Archive | June 29th, 2014

Target China by F. William Engdahl


Target China by F. William Engdahl

…by  Cara  St. Louis



“Step-by-step, just as with the boiling of frogs, Washington has been turning the heat up on China since about 2005. Today it is dangerously close to a boil.

It is not too late for China but its people and leaders must have absolutely no illusions about the ruthlessness and determination of their adversary, the elite policy circles of the Anglo-American axis.

The book you are about to read details how US policy circles increasingly plan to mortally wound and eventually kill China’s economic wonder.” (Engdahl, Target China).

F. William Engdahl, Geopolitical Analyst, Lecturer, AuthorF. William Engdahl, Geopolitical Analyst, Lecturer, Author

So says F. William Engdahl, one of today’s pre-eminent geopolitical analysts, who has spent years studying China and the west’s vendetta upon that country.

Target China is about to make its debut in English. Engdahl accounts for the whole strategy: everything from currency and debt manipulation to the all-out attack by Monsanto, which ultimately isn’t what we think it is. It’s much worse than that.

In other words, the brutally effective full spectrum dominance attack that has been honed to a fine ‘art’ and is now turned as a deadly accurate cultural and social water cannon upon any population in the path of what the ravenous powers desire. The good news? Engdahl is a master at taking the overwhelmingly complex and making it understandable to Everyman.

It is profoundly important to understand this mechanism as it is as often used on the United States population itself as on any other country. One can easily, after reading this book, turn around and face the nation and be horrified by the absolute similarities. It is, after all, The Weapon. Why would anyone be immune?

The US, in what might be considered both a move of desperation and of inestimable greed, backed China into a corner, forcing them to buy dollars — buy the debt. The US used this leverage to fund the invasions of the Middle East. “A perverse, unholy alliance was developing between the sole hegemonic superpower United States and the world’s fastest growing economy, China. Washington never intended for China to massively revalue. It was a bluff, a pressure point.”

Also, China became an importer of oil as of 1994, a turn of events which has never situated a country well. Thus they demonstrated a weak spot, a point of leverage and blackmail. Couple this with the enormous demand for cars in China and a insatiable hunger is born; a hunger which we imagine must be fed. It is a shame China walked into the same trap so many others did in just the last few decades.

However, China had the means to go looking for oil, which it found in Africa. Not only has China established good relations with many African nations but they have offered an alternative to the slavery imposed by the IMF and the World Bank. This has not gone down well with the Oilmen and the Banks. One of the richest strikes was found in Dafur, which would be funneled toward the Sudan via a pipeline and, as Engdahl put it, “it was time to draw the noose around the neck of Sudan.” Much of the turmoil and confusion in Africa has had to do with strangling China’s attempts to do business there.

“In November 2006, Beijing hosted an extraordinary summit of 40 African heads of state. They literally rolled out the red carpet for the heads of among others Algeria, Nigeria, Mali, Angola, Central African Republic, Zambia, South Africa and Sudan.

China signed an oil deal, linking the Peoples’ Republic of China with the continent’s two largest nations – Nigeria and South Africa. China’s CNOC would lift the oil in Nigeria, via a consortium that included South African Petroleum Co. giving China access to what could be 175,000 barrels a day by 2008. The $2.27 billion deal gave state-controlled CNOC a 45% stake in a large off-shore Nigeria oil field. Previously, Nigeria had been considered in Washington to be an asset of the Anglo-American oil majors, ExxonMobil, Shell and Chevron.

The US Senate adopted a resolution in February 2006 that requested NorthAtlantic Treaty Organization troops in Darfur, as well as a stronger UN “peacekeeping” force with a robust mandate. A month later, President Bush also called for additional NATO forces in Darfur. The aim was to gain NATO control on China’s huge new oil potential.”

Well, you get the idea. This story is one of the primary scenarios of the 20th century.

Hands off our rice?Hands off our rice?

” Over the past thirty or more years the most dramatic change in the food consumption in the history of China has taken place. The change has occurred slowly such that most Chinese consumers greeted new products from mostly American food outlets as a tasty modern alternative to traditional Chinese food. Today this subtle destruction of the nutritional content of the Chinese diet has manifested in a crisis of explosive dimension.”

As with any other infiltration of a nation by Pirate Corporate America, one saw the rise of ambassadors such as KFC, McDonalds’s and Subway. However, these were just the first wave of troops off the landing craft at D-Day. The real tanks and assault weapons arrive flying the flag of Monsanto. It is on this front that utter control of feeding a population is wrested away from the country itself.

Since our bodies never recognized any of the above as ‘food,’ but rather as foreign invaders…well, any time Monsanto shows up it’s disastrous news for agriculture and health. This is becoming very well-documented thanks to these sorts of observations. Monsanto has actually introduced a form of rice which may eliminate the Chinese single-handedly.

Engdahl examines the effects of this destabilization and physiological assault strategy on China in detail, even referring to this as the new Opium War. Since this is a standard war tactic now, it behooves us to walk through this by the numbers with him.

“The deadly or crippling Anglo-American Pharmaceutical drug system has been developed over decades to use medical drugs to literally weaken whole populations, referred to by them as “herds.” The entire vaccine and drug industry almost without exception in the US, UK and Switzerland and Japan has been developed since World War II as a vital part of the eugenics agenda of the Rockefeller family circles of the Anglo-American establishment. Responsible persons concerned with the future health of the Chinese people would do well to examine this highly strategic form of warfare.” 

Yes, Engdahl did say that the pharmaceutical industry refers to us as ‘herds.’ Could that be all we need to know? Maybe, except that the rest of his analysis here is as deep and unexpected as the rest of this material. This is not the stuff one reads every day. His research has taken him down amazing paths.

‘Aldous Huxley stated already back in 1961:

“There will be, in the next generation or so, a pharmacological method of

Aldous Huxley striking the famous one-eye pose we see so often in these circles.Aldous Huxley striking the famous one-eye pose we see so often in these circles.

making people love their servitude, and producing dictatorship without tears, so to speak, producing a kind of painless concentration camp for entire societies, so that people will in fact have their liberties taken away from them, but will rather enjoy it, because they will be distracted from any desire to rebel by propaganda or brainwashing, or brainwashing enhanced by pharmacological methods. And this seems to be the final revolution.”


Today the West is fully in that “next generation or so.” It must be understood that Huxley was not merely a writer.

He was part of a tight-knit group working secretly with CIA director Allen Dulles and President Eisenhower’s Special Advisor for Cold War Strategy, Nelson Rockefeller, under sponsorship of the private Ford Foundation, on a top secret “mind-control” project called MK-Ultra, which created the 1960’s LSD, drug “hippie revolution” in the US as a project of ultimate social control experimentation.

Dr. Humphrey Osmond, Timothy Leary, author Ken Kesey and others were involved in the secret CIA experiments together with leading pharmaceutical companies.’

CIA techniques introduced into the human population presently targeted for control — the grand experiment results from the USA, now an electro-magnetic concentration camp — packaged in the most effective missile to the next target. Engdahl is explicit in detailing the deep ways this is done here and abroad and to what aim.

Production and distribution of these pharmaceuticals, under their various names and disguises, in China? You do the math.

“China today, because of its dynamic economic growth and its determination to pursue sovereign Chinese national interests, merely because China exists, is becoming the Pentagon new “enemy image,” now replacing the false “enemy image” of Islam used after September 2001 by the Bush-Cheney Administration to justify the Pentagon’s global power pursuit. The new US military posture against China has nothing to do with any aggressive threat from the side of China. The Pentagon has decided to escalate its aggressive military posture to China merely because China has become a strong vibrant independent pole in world economics and geopolitics.”

Andrew Marshall, mentor of Dick Cheney and Don Rumsfeld...what a claim to fame. Andrew Marshall, mentor of Dick Cheney and Don Rumsfeld…what a claim to fame.

China spends about 10% of what the US does on the military. “The new US military posture against China has nothing to do with any aggressive threat from the side of China. The Pentagon has decided to escalate its aggressive military posture to China merely because China has become a strong vibrant independent pole in world economics and geopolitics.”

The Pentagon is after China. End of story. The plan is referred to as String of Pearls.

“The architect of the Pentagon anti-China strategy of Air-Sea battle is Andrew Marshall, the man who has shaped Pentagon advanced warfare strategy for more than 40 years and among whose pupils were Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld. Since the 1980s Marshall has been a promoter of an idea first posited in 1982 by Marshal Nikolai Ogarkov, then chief of the Soviet general staff, called RMA, or ‘Revolution in Military Affairs.’ The best definition of RMA was the one provided by Marshall himself:

“A Revolution in Military Affairs (RMA) is a major change in the nature of warfare brought about by the innovative application of new technologies which, combined with dramatic changes in military doctrine and operational and organizational concepts, fundamentally alters the character and conduct of military operations.” 

To interrupt China’s strategic ties with its geographical partners in an effort dubbed ‘The String of Pearls,’ by the Pentagon is Job One. Corporations approaching some of these countries are “hand-picked by Washington to do the most harm.” Failing that, sanctions of all kinds are being imposed on friends of China. The fact that they are geographically joined with China matters not in the least. The Navy is deploying its mightiest ‘recon# and surveillance along this so-called string of pearls. This is one hell of an all-out effort under way simply to stop one nation from succeeding economically. The details, so carefully and engagingly laid out in Target China, are staggering…and important.

Not left out, of course, is that well-oiled social engineering monolith, Hollywood, and its nefarious cousin, the so-called media. This weapon is being used, as always, to full effect.

“Since President Woodrow Wilson openly enlisted the cooperation of Hollywood film makers to create propaganda to stir war fever among Americans, Hollywood and US media have been intimately linked with shaping consensus for US national strategy. By 2012 that combinationwas being turned to slowly make the Peoples’ Republic of China into what in perhaps a few short years would be portrayed as the new “Hitler Germany” adversary. The US Pentagon and the military industrial complex, together with the elites at the New York Council on Foreign Relations and other select organizations of power brokers, developed a form of culture and media warfare which China was very susceptible to.”

Coincidentally, two major newspaper publishers in London did the very same thing at the behest of The Tavistock Institute in order to bring a British population had no quarrel at all with Germany into WWI. Hmmmm….. Well, on with our tale.

The following discussion is deeply interesting: which revolutions do Google executives brag about being at the helm of? Where have they and their arms and outlets played a significant and strategic role in bringing down leaders and governments? They never try to hide these things but we are trained to attend to the mainstream media and one will not find the truth there. Does China, in fact, have a reason to be suspicious of Google and Facebook and Twitter and youtube and….

The reality is that China faces a situation today that it has never faced. On top of a three-decade long hurtle into wealth and prominence on the world stage, China now faces the wrath of the established territory holders. Arguably there may only be one but it uses all the nations as arms to get what it wants, which is everything.

Fair enough. The discussion around China is an opportunity that cannot be missed for it will be in seeing and understanding this example that the world can be shaken awake and save itself from the Ravenous Beast. Additionally, the idea of a ‘counter-pole’ to totalitarian power rocking the world today is an intriguing one.

Engdahl concludes Target China by asking an important question: “What then shall we do?” as Tolstoy expressed it. He then pursues some thinking on the matter, including a look at what brought down the first Roman Empire. He highlights the Achilles Heels of China, the EU and the US, for after all, the west does have an Achilles Heel, and Engdahl knows what it is. Get this book!

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European Royals Killing Naked Children for Fun at Human Hunting Parties



Teens were drugged, stripped naked, raped, hunted down in the woods and killed by European royals according to this week’s latest eyewitness to testify before theInternational Common Law Court of Justice in Brussels. The woman was the fourth eyewitness to give accounts about these human hunting parties of the global elite Ninth Circle Satanic Child Sacrifice Cult network. A former member of the Netherlands criminal drug syndicate known as Octopus testified that victims were obtained for these human hunting parties from juvenile detention centers in Belgium and Holland.

Photo:Angelfire“In 2004 I was an involuntary witness to torture, rape and murder sessions of drugged children performed for a group of high ranked people of the Netherlands” stated a woman. “I was taken to a hunting party in Belgium close to Brussels where I saw two boys and a girl ages 14 to 16, hunted and killed by global elites. The human hunting party was heavily guarded by the Netherlands Royal Guards. I was told that King Albert of Belgium was present.”Four eyewitnesses confirmed that as children and youths they were forced to attend human hunting parties where they and other children were raped, with some killed, and deceased boy’s penises were cut off. Allegedly there was a Dutch countryside palace where boys’ penises were displayed like trophies on a wall. Some hunting parties were hosted on the grounds of Belgium Queen Beatrix’s Palace.Dutch therapist Toos Nijenhuis claimed that as a four year-old she was forced to witness murders of children that involved former Pope Ratzinger, a Dutch Catholic Cardinal, plus the father of Netherlands Belgium Queen Beatrix and Bilderberger Founder, Dutch Crown Prince Alfrink Bernhard. “I saw the former Pope Joseph Ratzinger murder a little girl″ another witness confirmed. “It was at a French chateau in the fall of 1987. It was ugly, horrible and didn’t happen just once. Ratzinger and Bernhard were some of the more prominent men who took part.”

In Ireland, Spain and Canada 34 child mass grave sites were discovered and appeared linked to Ninth Circle activities. The largest was the Mohawk Indian Residential School in Brantford Ontario where child remains were identified in 2008 before the Catholic Church, Canadian government and English Crown shut down the dig by professional archeologists. The 2013 ICLCJ Court had found Queen Elizabeth and Prince Phillip guilty for the Oct. 10 1964 disappearance of ten native children from the Catholic residential school in Kamloops British Columbia. In the first two weeks of the 2014 court witnesses identified Dutch and Belgian royal participants in the rape and killing of Mohawk children and newborns. Named were Bernhard and King Hendrick, consort to Queen Wilhelmina of Holland.


Alleged to be present during the human hunting parties were the late Prince Johan Friso and his wife Mabel Wisse Smit, former ministers, the top man of the Dutch army, the under secretary of the Raad Van State in the Netherlands, the Vice-Roy next to Queen Beatrix and other global business and political leaders including some from the US. “Surely the present King Willem Alexander and King Filip and their wives know about this abuse and murder of children” said one eyewitness.”They do nothing about it and likely are the ones to stop investigations and prosecutions.”

In January 2014 the brother of the king of Holland Prince Johan Friso passed away in a coma after these three Dutch-language websites shown here reached the internet. The websites revealed that Friso was at the human hunting and killing parties.”The story came on the internet after years of trying to move the policy and justice department in the Netherlands to act against the criminals,” an eyewitness said. “Nobody did anything to stop these criminals, probably because Queen Beatrix and King Albert likely interfered with the investigations.”

Human hunting parties were said to take place on the grounds of Belgium Queen Beatrix’s Palace in the Netherlands. Two witnesses have named former Pope Joseph Ratzinger and Queen Beatrix’s father the deceased Prince Alfrink Bernhard, as being present at child sacrifices. Both were said to be Nazi sympathizers.

The ICLCJ Court received a collection of Jesuit archival records about a child sacrificial cult known as the Knights of Darkness. In 1933 the Knights were established by the Catholic Jesuits and Nazi Waffen S.S. Division. The records showed Ratzinger was identified as a member of the Knights while working as an S.S. Chaplain’s assistant at the Ravensbruck Concentration Camp in Germany. The records also stated that Ratzinger participated in child sacrificial rites using kidnapped children from the camps or political prisoners.

Another court document called the Magisterial Privilege indicated child sacrifice was a regular occurrence at the Vatican. At the tender age of 12 “Svali” of San Diego County California claimed she was brought to catacombs beneath the Vatican to witness the sacrifice of a three year-old drugged boy. In this video her interviewer said that 24 years prior a “Maria” told him she witnessed another satanic child sacrifice rite in the same Vatican Catacombs.

Last week an Irish police investigator reported to the ICLCJ Court that the close to 800 babies buried in a Catholic Nun’s septic tank were dismembered, decapitated and in bits and pieces – signs that they could have been murdered in Satanic child sacrifice rites. In the last two months the ICLCJ Court has heard these heart-wrenching testimonies about the rape, torture and murder of children as recently as 2010 by Catholic leaders, European royal family members and other global elites. Murder sites of the Ninth Circle Satanic Child Sacrifice Cult were said to be in the catacombs of Catholic Cathedrals including the Vatican and on private estates, military establishments and groves in Belgium, Holland, Spain, Australia, France, England and the US.

The ICLCJ Court has been overwhelmed with newly discovered evidence and a number of new witnesses coming forward to testify about Ninth Circle Satanic Child Sacrifice Cult activities. They have uncovered Ninth Circle Satanic Cult member possible involvement in international child sacrifice, kidnapping, exploitation and drug rings. The five international judges and 27 jury members were expected to remain in session for at least a year due to the complexity of the cases.

Amnesty has been offered to citizens or employees of the Vatican, Crown of England, churches or governments willing to give sworn testimony or evidence that leads to the prosecution of these global elites suspected of committing crimes. Rewards up to 10,000 euros or around 13,660 dollars was available through the ICLCJ court.


This article was originally published in Top info Post and can be accessed here.

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Syrian ‘moderates’ aren’t so moderate in Iraq


Who are the ‘moderate’ rebels President Obama wants to train and arm?

Well, God bless Barack Obama – he’s found some “moderate” rebels in Syria. Enough to supply them with weapons and training worth $500m. Congress wants to arm these brave freedom fighters, you see. And Obama, having sent his 300 elite Spartan lads to Iraq to help Nouri al-Maliki fight the rebels there, needs to send help to the rebels in Syria – even though most of them are on the side of the rebels in Iraq whom Obama wants Maliki to defeat.

Confusing? You bet. So first steps first. Who are the “moderate” rebels whom Obama wants to train and arm? He doesn’t name them – and he can’t, because the original “moderates” whom America swore to arm (with the help of the CIA, the Brits, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey) were the so-called “Free Syrian Army”, mostly composed of deserters from Assad’s government forces. But the FSA – briefly beloved of John McCain until he discovered a pro-al-Qa’ida fighter sharing a photo-op with him in northern Syria – has decomposed.

Its men have gone home, switched to the bearded Islamists of the Nusrah or Isis – or Isil if we heed the latest acronym – or re-deserted to the government army and taken up arms for Assad again. Some freedom fighters! They weren’t given enough weapons, we are told. Now they’ll get more. And no doubt sell them – as they did the last lot. For it is a sad fact of war that whenever a gun crosses a border, it represents not loyalty but cash.

Give an FSA man – if you can find one – an anti-aircraft missile and it will be sold to the highest bidder. In all the civil wars I’ve covered, I’ve never seen a weapon in the hands of a militia which hasn’t bought it from someone else. In a humiliating interview on Channel 4, our own Defence Secretary admitted that weapons given to Syrian rebels had fallen into the hands of the bad guys. How do you monitor all the guys whom you give a gun to? Send them off with a personal drone to make sure they don’t sell it?

Besides, how do you actually find a “moderate” these days in Syria’s war? The Islamist rebels fight to the death. No “moderates” they. And – accursed facts now intervene – these are the very same Islamist rebels now threatening the Iraqi state. And just to make things even more confusing, Maliki has just been thanking Assad’s boys for air-raiding his own rebel enemies on the Iraqi-Syrian border on the grounds that Syria and Iraq are “friends”.

So now to our own real friend, the Department of Home Truths. What’s left of the FSA has been fighting the Islamist Isis-Isil forces. So have the Kurdish militias in northern Syria. So have a few village militias. And the Syrians have a suspicion that this is Obama’s half-baked plan: to arm the anti-Islamist Syrian rebels to fight the pro-al-Qa’ida rebels and thus – indirectly – keep both the Assad and Maliki regimes in power.

The problem is that Obama must do this without revealing that the Syrian-Iraqi battle against Sunni Wahabis is one and the same war, that Assad’s Syrian army – using Russian jets – is struggling against exactly the same enemy as Maliki’s Iraqi army, also soon to be augmented (if we are to believe Maliki’s blather to the BBC Arabic Service) with Russian jets. In other words, Assad not only has the public support of Moscow; he has the private support of Washington (and therefore, of course, of Israel).

Why else would the White House say that the money for Syrian “moderates” would help “counter terrorist threats” – “terrorist” being Assad’s description of his enemies. But of course, Obama must keep calling Assad a “brutal dictator”. Difficult to explain all this on Fox News, of course. So just keep repeating the word “moderate”. Over and over again.

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Robert Fisk: How on earth can I$raHell tolerate this filth from B’nai Brith Canada?


Four million Canadians carrying the anti-Semitic ‘disease’? We’ve heard this kind of despicable propaganda before.

Not long ago, I was handed the most outrageous, vile, dishonest and slanderous calumny uttered against the people of Canada. It was contained in a full-page advertisement in the National Post (founder, Conrad Black), a newspaper handed out – free, I’m happy to say – on my Air France flight out of Toronto. Here is the headline: “Almost 4 million Canadians are afflicted by this disease.”

Beneath this title is a half-page, very blurred and uncaptioned colour photo of a large crowd – they could be football supporters, rush-hour commuters in Vancouver, you name it; they are mostly white males but include women and with at least one dark-skinned man close to the camera. Beneath the picture, this incredible ad continues: “Left unchecked, it [the disease] can result in violence tendencies. Many times, those infected haven’t been diagnosed and may pass it on to their children, grandchildren, colleagues or friends. Please help stop the spread of this disease before it contaminates your community.”

This is frightening stuff, of course. Could this refer to some of the six million Canadians who may be living with HIV/Aids? Or the 4.5 million Canadians affected by arthritis? Or the 2.5 million Canadians believed to have diabetes? Or even some of the estimated 7.8 million Canadians treated for depression each year? Nope. This is far more serious. For the “disease” afflicting “almost 4 million Canadians” is “anti-Semitism” and this disgusting advertisement – published without comment by one of Canada’s leading right-wing newspapers – was produced by B’nai Brith Canada and the “Jewish Christian Alliance”. “At the first sign of anti-Semitism,” this appalling ad concludes, “call the B’nai Brith Canada Anti-Hate Hotline…” In other words, this pro-Israeli Jewish group – whose exaggerations and hateful propaganda have been rightly condemned by Jewish Canadians – claims that four million of their fellow-countrymen and women are sick, racist neo-Nazis. What other conclusion are we supposed to draw if almost 9 per cent of the Canadian population is “diseased”, “infected” and “contaminated”.

Now let’s forget that B’nai Brith regards any criticism of the state of Israel – however justified, however mild, made by Jews and non-Jews alike – as anti-Semitic. Let’s forget previous protests by Jewish Americans against the organisation’s grotesque exaggerations. Let’s even ignore its equation of Palestinians with Nazis, a comparison that led it to publish a bowdlerised version of the infamous photograph of the wartime Grand Mufti of Jerusalem meeting with Hitler – the Nazi dictator was “moved” in the B’nai Brith version of the snapshot about three feet closer to the Palestinian so that Hitler appears to be almost sitting on his visitor’s lap.

And let’s not ask why the Canadian Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, did not immediately leap to the defence of his own Canadian people when confronted by this disgusting statement of “disease”. For alas, Harper told the Israeli Knesset last January – while archly claiming “criticism of Israeli policy is not in and of itself necessarily (sic) anti-Semitic” – that condemnation of Israeli policies amounted to anti-Semitism. This included those who supported the boycott campaign against Israel or referred to it as an apartheid state. “On some campuses,” said Harper, “intellectualised (sic) arguments against Israeli policies thinly mask the underlying realities, such as the shunning of Israeli academics and the harassment of Jewish students.”

“Sickening,” Harper called this. Yes, the Canadian Prime Minister himself was using the “disease” metaphor employed by B’nai Brith. And why not? Because there’s another reason Canadians can expect no protection from their own Prime Minister, who in his speech might have been a member of the Knesset rather than a guest of its members: Stephen Harper was awarded the “International Presidential Gold Medal” for “his commitment to the Jewish people and the State of Israel” in 2008 – by B’nai Brith.

But what, we have to ask, possesses Israel’s “friends” to publish this pernicious material about 4 million “diseased” Canadians? Does B’nai Brith Canada not realise that these very same despicable lies were used by the Nazis in their hate propaganda against the Jews of Europe? In Hitler’s Germany, Jews were described as microbes. Jews, according to Julius Streicher, were “the carriers of disease and vermin among men”. In August 1941, Goebbels called Jews “the carriers of infectious diseases” and two weeks later referred to Jews as “parasites”. By November, he was calling them “lice”.

But now, 4 million Canadians carry “disease”. Undiagnosed “infections” will be passed on to children and grandchildren. The “community” is in danger of being “contaminated”. If this stuff was not so revolting, it could be laughed off. It’s not just a question of how Stephen Harper can tolerate this garbage. How can Canadians? And – here I draw only on my own experience of visiting Israel itself dozens of times – how on earth can Israel tolerate this filth from B’nai Brith Canada? Disgrace is the word that comes to mind. And it prompts two grim thoughts. If this dangerous material is really supposed to defend Israel, then Israel must be in much greater danger than it believes. And with a Canadian outfit such as B’nai Brith and the National Post as its “friends”, Israel doesn’t need Arab enemies.

So, that’s what Isis has been up to

While the Iraqi army supposedly fights back against Isis, it’s worth remembering that the cities at either end of the Islamists’ new self-proclaimed caliphate – Aleppo in Syria and Mosul in Iraq – have historic links which precede the post-First World War Anglo-French Mandates that divided them with a Syrian-Iraqi frontier. I’m indebted to a short but enlightening monograph by John McHugo (chair of the Liberal Democrat Friends of Palestine) which points out that “in 1919-20… the separation of Iraq from Greater Syria was still only a division between occupation zones. Aleppo had stronger links and greater fellow feeling with Mosul than with Damascus.”

Both, says McHugo, were cosmopolitan, merchant cities “which had been trading partners for hundreds of years, if not for millennia, along the Silk Road, and there was no natural frontier between them.”

It gets better. According to McHugo – a lawyer by trade, as well as an Arabist – Aleppo, “still at the time probably Syria’s largest city and certainly the country’s commercial hub, had retained its links with Mosul and Baghdad throughout the Mandate years. Many politicians from the city favoured Syria joining Iraq in a federation, or even a full union…” So there you have it. The Silk Road reconnected. Now we know why the Isis lads have been bulldozing the border ramparts between Iraq and Syria.

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Forcible Feeding Constitutes Torture Crime


PCHR Warns of Zio-Nazi Efforts to Legitimize Forcible Feeding against Palestinian Detainees and Calls upon the International Community to Immediately Intervene


The Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) warns of the serious implications of Israeli efforts to pass a law granting powers to the Israeli prison authorities to forcibly feed Palestinian detainees.  The bill will be presented to the Israeli Knesset on Monday, 30 June 2014, to be passed in the second reading. PCHR stresses that this bill constitutes a flagrant violation of the Convention against Torture and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and is intended to deny international and human rights demands to stop the policy of administrative detention adopted by Israel as a form of punishment against Palestinians.  These demands have notably increased following the declaration of a hunger strike by Palestinian administrative detainees, and in this context, the UN Secretary General demanded Israel to release Palestinian administrative detainees.

Israeli authorities initiated efforts to enact such law after Palestinian administrative detainees in Israeli prisons declared an open hunger strike in April, in protest against detaining them without charges or trials. This bill was proposed by the Israeli Ministry of Internal Security, and it was passed in the first reading in the Israeli Knesset on 09 June 2014.

PCHR believes that forcible feeding or threatening to use it is a form of cruel and degrading treatment that is prohibited by the Convention against Torture and criminalized under the International Criminal Law.  It constitutes an unjustified violation of a detainee’s personal freedom, physical safety and right to protest and declare strikes.  Having reached the same conclusion, the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right of Health and the ICRC demanded Israel not pass the bill of forcible feeding.

Forcible feeding constitutes a threat to the lives of detainees on hunger strike, as it is carried out by forcibly inserting a tube in the nose or the mouth to push food through it into the stomach directly.  It causes severe pains, and is often accompanied by using severe violence against the victim to cripple his/her resistance.  It is worth noting that 3 Palestinian detainees died because of forcible feeding in 1980 and 1983: Rassem Halawa; Ali al-Ja’fari; and Ishaq Marawgha.

Moreover, forcible feeding seriously violates the minimum standards of the ethics of the medical profession, and the right to abstain from receiving treatment. In this context, the World Health Assembly, Union of Israeli Hospitals and Israel Medical Association sent separate letters to the Israeli Prime Minister stressing their rejection of any law compelling physicians to forcibly feed the detainees, and indicating that forcible feeding involves violence, coercion and pains that may amount to torture.  The ICRC also warned Israeli physicians that they could be prosecuted before international mechanism if they participate in forcible feeding.  It should be noted that the Declaration of Malta on Hunger Strikers adopted by the World Medical Association in November 1991 stresses that medical intervention for the interest of a hunger striker must be based on his/her explicit or implicit consent and without a third party’s intervention.  The Declaration states also:

“Forcible feeding is never ethically acceptable. Even if intended to benefit, feeding accompanied by threats, coercion, force or use of physical restraints is a form of inhuman and degrading treatment. Equally unacceptable is the forced feeding of some detainees in order to intimidate or coerce other hunger strikers to stop fasting.”  “It is ethical to allow a determined hunger striker to die in dignity rather than submit that person to repeated interventions against his or her will.”

It is noted that Israeli physicians operating in Israeli prison do not report to the Israel Medical Association, as they report only to the Israeli Ministry of Health, which is one of the major supporters of the bill of forcible feeding.  So, the Israel Medical Association’s declaration does not represent the position of physician working in Israeli prisons, and PCHR’s follow-ups of detention conditions of Palestinians in Israeli prisons strongly indicate that physicians of prisons might be involved in many crimes and violations.  PCHR warns of possible use of this law by physicians of Israeli prisons to cover their perpetration of more crimes and violations against Palestinian detainees.

The Israeli Knesset decided on 23 June 2014 to adjourn the voting on the bill in the second and third readings to Monday, 30 June 2014, in order for the Israeli leadership to create an appropriate political atmosphere to ensure passing the law, as there is international opposition to the bill. Drafters of the bill made some amendments to the bill in an attempt to ensure passing it.  PCHR emphasizes that such proposed amendments or other one will never change the reality that forcible feeding constitutes a form of torture and an assault on the personal freedom.  PCHR calls upon the international community and concerned international and local organizations to declare their explicit rejection of any law for forcible feeding, and not to be misled by flimsy guarantees added by Israel to the bill in an attempt to pass it in the Israeli Knesset.

On 24 April 2014, 130 out of 191 Palestinian administrative detainees in Israeli prisons declared an open hunger strike, joining Ayman Tbaish, who started a hunger strike on 28 February 2014, in protest against being detained without charges or trials, and to urge the international community to pressurize Israel to abolish the administrative detention policy. The detainees suspended their strike on 25 June 2014; that is, following 62 days of complete abstention form having food, depending on water and salt only.  At least 90 detainees were evacuated to hospitals.  Reasons for suspending the hunger strike have not been revealed.

It is worth noting that about 2,000 Palestinian prisoners declared a hunger strike on 17 April 2012, which continued for 28 days, demanding stopping the administrative detention policy used without any restraints to punish Palestinian activists.  At the time, more than 300 Palestinian had been placed under administrative detention, some of whom had been detained for years without charges or trials.  The prisoners suspended the strike as Israeli prison and security authorities promised to release some administrative detainees and review the cases of others.  The number of administrative detainees decreased as it dropped to 124 in July 2013, but the number has recently increased to 331 administrative detainees, 140 of whom were arrested in the past two weeks.

Posted in Palestine Affairs, ZIO-NAZI, Campaigns, Human RightsComments Off on Forcible Feeding Constitutes Torture Crime

Pakistan: Entire Nation at War


By Sajjad Shaukat

Unlike the past wars, the arena of war has changed. In the ongoing era, lethal weapons and

subversive tactics used by the terrorists including foreign support to internal entities and

propaganda can be more harmful in damaging the interest of a target country. The new warfare

has made it difficult for the military to serve alone as the automatic dominant sphere in every

war, covering all domains. This sort of war requires the cooperation of the entire nation.

In these terms, Pakistan has become the target of the different war, while country’s armed forces

and other intelligence and law-enforcing agencies have intermittently been coping with the

enemy which employs subversive activities of various kinds such as suicide attacks, targeted

killings, assaults on the Army and security agencies, kidnappings, sectarian and ethnic violence.

In this regard, having connection with each other, militant outfits, especially Tehreek-e-Taliban

Pakistan (TTP) and Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA) and Balochistan Republican Army

(BRA) including other banned organizations have claimed responsibility for a number of terror-
attacks. Karachi, Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa and Balochistan have become vulnerable to their acts

of sabotage. On June 8, 2014, the most tragic attack on Zaireen at Taftan Balochistan is quite

alarming where two suicide bombers armed with SMGs attacked and exploded themselves, after

conducting indiscriminate firing on Shias. Resultantly, 24 individuals were killed and 14 injured.

Spokesman of the extremist group Jash-e-ul-Islam accepted responsibility. The brutal attack

seeks immediate attention of Provincial Government and law-enforcing agencies.

Foreign backed subversive activities by the Baloch Sub-Nationalities (BSNs) go on, as

miscreants carried out rocket attacks, target-killings, exploding gas pipelines and firing on

security forces particularly in Awaran, Kech, Dera Bugti, Khuzdar and Pangur areas.

In fact, India has set up secret training centers in Afghanistan where its military personnel in

connivance with Israeli RAW and CIA have been imparting training of guerilla warfare to

the youngsters, having links with TTP, BLA, BRA and other similar insurgent outfits. These

anti-Pakistan agencies send heavily-armed militants who not only target the outposts of Pak

Army, but also commit various sorts of terror-activities in order to destabilize Pakistan. These

insurgents are fighting proxy war with Pakistan. In this context, question arises that the terrorist

Fazalullah is hiding in Kunar, Afghanistan, as to why US did not kill him through CIA-drone

attack, as it did to Hakimullah in North Waziristan.

It is notable that when idea of initiating ‘Aman-Ki-Asha’ (Desire for peace) was presented, the

exponents of this initiative argued that it will provide a platform to Pakistan to make peace with

India and to facilitate resolution of core issues like Kashmir, Siachen, Sir Creek, and Water

through a dialogue process with New Delhi. But, Aman-Ki-Asha, promoted by the Geo and Jang

Media Group in lines of Indian shrewd diplomacy provided India with pretext not only to keep

all the issues with Islamabad unsettled, but also to distort the image of Pakistan, its ideology,

Two Nation Theory, its Army and Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI).

The collaboration between Geo network and India has been exposed, as leaders of various

political and religious parties including all the segments of society have been condemning the

Geo and Jang Group by showing solidarity with Pakistan’s armed forces and ISI, in the aftermath

of Hamid Mir episode which was manipulated by this media group. In this respect, , on April 28,

2014, voicing his support for the Pakistani journalist Hamid Mir, BJP leader Yashwant Sinha

called upon Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif through a letter to stop ISI from suspending Geo TV

GEO network is trying to garner international support for pressurizing Pakistani government

in its favour. Recently, a meeting between the owner of the Geo Media Group, Mir Shakeel-
ur-Rehman and US Congressmen of Indian lobby was arranged in USA by Pakistan’s former

ambassador to the US, Hussain Haqqani who escaped to America to avoid judicial inquiry,

as he proved disloyal to Pakistan due to his assistance to external enemies. However, such

confluence indicates converging interests of anti-Pakistan forces at national and international

level, manifested through GEO network.

Question is that who are supporting GEO? It is the Indian hawkish leadership alongside global

establishment which are self-proclaimed proponents of free media like Committee to Protect

Journalists, Reporters without Borders, EU Trade Commission and International and Federation

of Journalists including various so-called human rights organizations and NGOs. They do not

have any interest to see a strong and stable Pakistan.

No doubt, GEO is acting as a compliant tool of foreign forces, working to weaken the

government and state institutions of Pakistan. In a shameless attempt to gain public sympathies,

GEO network is orchestrating plans to attack its own employees, while projecting that it was

done by ISI and Pak Army. Pakistani nation cannot be befooled by such a dramatization of self-
infliction. We know who you really are…then why are you inflicting sufferings onto your poor

employees? GEO has lost its popularity in the whole Pakistan. Patriotic Pakistanis have rejected

foreign sponsored ‘JEW TV,’ if it is not true, then why has GEO removed its logo from its vans?

It is mentionable that Hindu politics and culture, dominated by the fundamentalist parties such

as BJP, RSS, VHP, Shiv Sena and other similar groups which have been propagating Hindutva

(Hindu nationalism) are feeling pleasure because BJP hardliner Prime Minister Narendra Modi

speaks of Hindu deep seated animosity against Pakistan. Instead of resolving the issues with

Islamabad, especially Kashmir dispute, Modi Govt in India, wants to revoke the article 370 of

the Indian constitution which grants special status to the Indian Occupied Kashmir. Thus, Modi

has ignored the Kashmiri liberation movement, and UNO resolutions about the independence

of Kashmir. Without any progress on core issues like Indian-held Kashmir, Water, Siachen, Sir

Creek and Indian proxies in Balochistan and FATA, there can be no peace with New Delhi. So,

measures like granting the status of Most Favourite Nation to India will prove fruitless.

Meanwhile, since June 15, this year, Pakistan’s armed forces started a full scale operation

“Zarb-e-Azb” against terrorists in North Wazirastan Agency. In this regard, DG, ISPR, Gen.

Asim Saleem Bajwa said: “On the directions of the Government, Armed forces of Pakistan

have launched a comprehensive operation against foreign and local terrorists…these terrorists

had been waging a war against the state of Pakistan by disrupting our national life in all its

dimensions, stunting our economic growth and causing enormous loss of life and property…with

the support of the entire nation, these enemies will be denied space across the country.” Chief of

Army Staff, General Raheel Sharif also expressed similar views on June 16, saying that military

operation was aimed to eliminate all terrorists to get rid of the menace of terrorism.

Since then, jets of Pakistan Air Force have bombed militants’ hideouts in North Waziristan, and

killed more than 300 insurgents including foreign militants, while Pak Army has also started

ground offensive which has successfully been achieving its goals. Recently, several militants of

the TTP have been killed and more than 10 surrendered before the Army.

It is a good sign that taking it as a war of the entire nation against the external and internal

enemies, Pakistan’s media, politicians, leaders of religious parties and general masses are

showing solidarity with the armed forces. It could be judged from the countrywide protests

and rallies in support of the North Waziristan operation, assistance to the Internally Displaced

Persons (IDPs), and against the Geo Media Group—its foreign funding, particularly from India.

Nevertheless, TTP militants have been using suicide bombing as their main weapon against

their own country by calling suicide bombers-the followers of Islam. In this context, Imam-e-
Kaaba, Sheikh Abdul Rahman during his visit to Pakistan and during his Khateeb-e-Hajj had

clearly stated that suicide attacks are illegal (Haram). He explained, “Such acts fall under the

category of crime and suicide bombers or attackers are destined to go to Hell…they represent

enemy of Muslims and they commit crimes against humanity, while misguiding other Muslims.”

Denouncing terrorism as un-Islamic, he pointed out that terrorists’ activities are part of a

conspiracy to defame Islam and destroy Muslims.

Still, there is a need to highlight TTP’s “TAKFIRI” (Unbelievers) ideology and declaring

them as “KHAWARJI” (Out of Islam) by prominent religious scholars and intelligentsia. TTP

terrorists must not be addressed as “Maulana or “Maulvi.” While indicating their names, our

print and electronic media must mention them as “terrorists” or “rebels of the state.”

Combating terrorism is a case in point. For the purpose, PTV and other electronic TV channels

must be forbidden to air even a single minute interview or statements of terrorists. No nation

allows anti-state elements to present their distorted ideology as effectively as it happened in

Pakistan. This must be ended immediately.

Unfortunately, Budget 2014-15 shows that hardly any resources are earmarked for improving

capability of own law-enforcing and intelligence agencies. Instead, billions of rupees are

allocated for mega projects like METRO bus.

Nonetheless, today our nation stands at the crossroads of its destiny, facing multiple challenges

to the country. So, it is not the war of the armed forces and security agencies alone, because the

entire nation is at war which demands cooperation of every citizen and politician with the latter.

It is the right hour to stand united against all the foreign funded and foreign sponsored anti-
Pakistan forces like terrorism, Geo network, propaganda campaign of Aman Ki Asha, Hindutva

and Modi’s fundamentalist approach against Pakistan.

Sajjad Shaukat writes on international affairs and is author of the book: US vs Islamic Militants,

Invisible Balance of Power: Dangerous Shift in International Relations

Posted in Pakistan & KashmirComments Off on Pakistan: Entire Nation at War

Bankers Could Go To Jail


Photo: brads651/cc/flickrMorning Edition had a strange piece discussing how regulators can punish banks for breaking the law. The piece focused on the various fines and regulatory measures that can be imposed as penalties when banks are found to have broken the law. Remarkably it never considered the underlying logic of the punishment and the likely deterrent effect on criminal activity.

While banks are legal institutions, ultimately it is individuals that break the law. The question that any regulator should be asking is the extent to which the penalties being imposed will discourage future law breaking. As a practical matter, the immediate victims of the measures mentioned in the piece are banks’ current shareholders. Since there is often a substantial period of time between when a crime is committed and when regulators discover it and succeed in imposing a penalty, the shareholders facing the sanction will be a different group from the shareholders who benefited from the original crime. This makes little sense either from the standpoint of justice or from the standpoint of deterring criminal activity by bankers.

The imposition of large fines may cause current shareholders to demand the executives who broke the law be fired, but in many cases they will have already moved on to other jobs or retired. In the case of the fraudulent loans that were passed on in mortgage backed securities (MBS) in the housing bubble years, most of the top executives had already left their banks by the time actions were brought by the Justice Department.

In this case, they made enormous amounts of money by breaking the law. The financial crisis may have caused them to retire or leave their banks somewhat sooner than they would have preferred, but almost all of them come out as net gainers from their actions.

The one sanction that would clearly be effective in deterring bankers from breaking the law would be putting them in jail for breaking the law. It is likely that the prospect of spending several years in prison, along with fines taking away most of their monetary gains, would provide a serious disincentive to bankers who might otherwise break the law. The Justice Department could have pressed cases by showing that top officials in banks had good reason to believe that many of the mortgages they were passing along in MBS were fraudulent.

It is likely that top executives at major investment banks had some knowledge that many of the loans they were securitizing were fraudulent, since there were numerous accounts in the business press about bad loans. There were also widely circulated jokes about the quality of these loans. (It was common to talk about “NINJA” loans, referring to loans where the borrower had no income, no job, and no assets.) It is likely that the top officials at these banks had at least as much knowledge of the loans their banks were securitizing as the people writing about them in the business press. (Deliberately passing along fraudulent loans is fraud.)

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Communities Protest That UK’s Equatorial Palm Oil Are Poised to Seize Land in Liberia



The UK-listed company, Equatorial Palm Oil (EPO), which is threatening to seize land owned by Liberians in defiance of commitments by Liberia’s President, will today receive a visit from affected communities. Members of the Jogbahn Clan, together with representatives from Liberian and international NGOs, will deliver a petition with over 90,000 signatures, reminding EPO that it does not have community consent to expand onto their lands, and that doing so could escalate violence. [1] EPO’s past operations in Liberia have triggered allegations of conflict and human rights abuses. The company has maintained that any expansion is legal. [2]

“EPO’s recent expansion efforts are a brazen example of a company defying international law, government orders and the rights of communities,” said Silas Kpanan’Ayoung Siakor, campaigner at the Sustainable Development Institute. “EPO has no claim to this land, it is owned by the communities who live on it.” [3]

Residents from the Jogbahn Clan in Liberia’s Grand Bassa County say that EPO has begun demarcating blocks of land in preparation for clearing, and have accused its security officers of threatening community members. These actions defy the March commitment by Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf that EPO could not expand onto the lands of the Joghban Clan without their permission. [4] The right of Liberian communities such as the Joghban Clan to give or withhold consent to projects that could have an impact on their land and resources is also provided under international human rights law, as well as the Principles and Criteria of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) of which EPO is a member. [5] The Joghban people have refused to give such consent.

EPO has a very poor track record in Grand Bassa County. In September of last year, officers from the EPO security team and the Liberian Police reportedly worked together to assault and beat Joghban community members who were peacefully protesting the company’s operations. Those arrested were soon released after it was determined by the government’s Grand Bassa attorney that there was no justification for continued detention. No government investigation report regarding this incident has been made public. [6]

EPO denied any involvement in the violence, saying that it had been “falsely accused”, and does not “condone or encourage such described behaviour,” and “never instructed or directed any of its staff or PSU officers to intimidate Jogbahn community members in September or at any time.” However, EPO admitted to Global Witness that it provided logistical support to the Liberian police who are accused of intimidating villagers on the plantation. The company further stated that it “respect[s] the Liberian community rights and land, and ha[s] followed the law and procedures laid out”, had taken “strict steps” to ensure that it only plants oil palm on its concession land and legally-acquired community land, and  is “a responsible company and committed to sustainable oil palm development.” [7]

EPO’s concessions in Liberia total 8,900 km2 of land, which the company believes gives it the legal right to use the land to develop a palm oil concession.  The company is listed on the London-based AIM stock market, and is now majority owned by Malaysian palm oil giant Kuala Lumpur Kepong Bhd (KLK). Major brands including Kellogg’s, Kraft, Nestle, Unilever, Procter & Gamble, and General Mills have been reported as direct or indirect consumers of KLK palm oil. [8]

“We demand that EPO stops inciting conflict by preparing to clear our land,” commented Jogbahn Elder Joseph Chio Johnson, “EPO must stop threatening our people and accept that our no means no.”

Notes to editor

  1. Sustainable Development Institute and Friends of the Earth International, Tell Equatorial Palm Oil NO means NO!, Rainforest Rescue, Wir stoppen die Walddiebe!, Friends of the Earth US, Stop an abusive palm oil company from grabbing Liberian land, Milieudefensie, Laat Equatorial Palm Oil weten dat NEE echt NEE betekent!
  2. Equatorial Palm Oil, Letter to Global Witness, 17 December 2013.  EPO’s full response can be found on Global Witness’ website at:
  3. Customary land rights are protected under a range of international human rights laws applicable to Liberia, including the African Charter on Human & Peoples’ Rights (1981), the International Covenant on Economic, Social & Cultural Rights (1966), the International Covenant on Civil & Political Rights (1966), the Convention on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (1965), as well as principles of customary international law expressed in the Universal Declaration on Human Rights (1948) and UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (2007).
  4. Sustainable Development Institute, SDI welcomes President Sirleaf’s commitment to protecting Joghban clan’s land from further encroachment by British palm oil company Equatorial Palm Oil, 6 March 2014; Global Witness,NGOs welcome Liberian President’s commitment to stop British palm oil company “taking” community land, 10 March 2014.
  5. Free Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) is a key principle of Liberia’s Community Rights Law with respect to Forest Lands (2009), which provides communities with a right to give or withhold their consent to activities planned on community land or which may impact on that land and the community. Article 7 of the Liberian Constitution provides for the maximum feasible participation by citizens of Liberia, in the management of Liberia’s natural resources. FPIC is also an established legal principle supported by numerous regional and international legal instruments to which Liberia is legally bound, including the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR). The decision of the African Commission on Human & Peoples’ Rights in the case of Endorois Welfare Council v. Kenya (276/2003) e.g. at para 209, including with regard to right to property (Art. 14 ACHPR), as well we the right to development (Art. 22 ACHPR). See also ACHPR Resolution 224 on a Human Rights-Based Approach to Natural Resources Governance, the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples as well as numerous other provisions and jurisprudence elaborated under the International Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Racial Discrimination, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
  6. Sustainable Development Institute, SDI calls on Equatorial Palm Oil to immediately cease land survey in Grand Bassa District #4, 25 September 2013. Sustainable Development Institute, Global Witness, FoE EWNI, FERN, Save My Future Foundation, UK’s Equatorial Palm Oil accused of human rights abuses in Liberia, 20 December 2013.
  7. Equatorial Palm Oil, Letter to Global Witness, 17 December 2013.  EPO’s full response can be found on Global Witness’ website at: Meeting between Global Witness and EPO in London on 14 November, 2013. EPO, “Letter to Global Witness,” 17 December 2013.
  8. Rainforest Action Network, Conflict Palm Oil in Practice: Exposing KLK’s role in rainforest destruction, land grabbing and child labour, 2 April 2014.

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The Plunder of Detroit and Iraq


“Iraq was invaded with soldiers, guns and bombs. Detroit was invaded by the corporate ‘suits’ who made a fast buck for themselves.” Both are plundered by the same bandits.

Cadillac Square from City Hall looking east towards county building, Detroit, Mich. (Image: Boston Public Library)The ugly face of empire and disaster capitalism is visible all over the world. Detroit, Michigan, was once a thriving city but was sent into a tailspin by the deindustrialization of the United States, white flight, and institutional racism which blamed black people who were in fact the victims of catastrophe. The coup de grace was delivered by big banks like UBS, Bank of America and Barclays, which sold risky derivatives schemes to corrupt Detroit politicians. When the financial deal inevitably headed south, the banks were the creditors first in line for a payout.

Far back in that line were the workers and people of Detroit. The emergency manager, Kevyn Orr, whose very position they had voted against establishing, rules the city. The new mayor is a figurehead and the people have no representation as the Republican governor and emergency manager remake the city for capital and the gentrifying settler class.

A world away in Iraq, a nation is crumbling under the weight of eleven years of violent occupation by the United States. The once developing nation is now a ruin, with all of its infrastructure and systems from health care to education destroyed by western avarice. The prime minister who was chosen with America’s blessing, Nouri al-Maliki, has now become an inconvenience and faces a bleak fate.

“In the United States, residents of a major city must plead to the international community for the right to access water.”The Bush administration and now the Obama team determined that promoting one side in sectarian political disputes would make for a smooth running and profitable occupation. Instead they brought war between Sunni and Shia and with goal of knocking down more dominoes, continued to fund jihadistswho always upset their plans. Now Maliki is being told to get out of office if he wants help in crushing the enemies that America made for his country.

Just as Iraq’s infrastructure has been destroyed, Detroit residents now live without basic services which ought to be regarded as the right of every human being. In the United States, a country which boasts of its high level of advancement, residents of a major city must plead to the international community for the right to access water.

In a city already on the brink, the powers that be chose to pressure struggling people to pay increased fees for water. They have also used harsh and sometimes improper methods to deprive even those who have paid their bills. No one can survive at all without water to drink, and one cannot survive very well without water for cooking, cleaning and sanitation. Very powerful people in boardrooms and government offices made decisions that turned Detroit into an Iraq in America’s midst and now sneer at pleas for mercy.

Desperate Detroiters represented by the Blue Planet Project, the Michigan Welfare Rights Organization, Food & Water Watch and the Detroit People’s Water Board, have made their case to the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Human Right to Safe Drinking Water. They issued a report which outlines the latest scheme to destroy Detroit as a city and as a home to poor and working people. The plan will ultimately privatize the water system and make Detroit another location for prime real estate and riches for the few.

“Very powerful people in boardrooms and government offices made decisions that turned Detroit into an Iraq in America’s midst and now sneer at pleas for mercy.”President Obama and his cohorts in the Democratic and Republican parties will go to any lengths to prop up the empire, but do little to help people in need. American allies in Ukraine or Iraq and other countries receive astronomical sums of money in order to help maintain Manifest Destiny. Poor people in Detroit and the rest of the country are not so lucky. They are seen only as obstacles to putting the rule of capital firmly in place.

Iraq was invaded with soldiers, guns and bombs. Detroit was invaded by the corporate “suits” who made a fast buck for themselves. The end result is the same for Michiganders and Iraqis alike. They end up suffering in a plundered society while other people make out like the bandits that they really are.

The organizations which reached out to the U.N. took an important step in changing the Detroit narrative. Politicians and the corporate media dismiss the city’s troubles as the fault of incompetent black people. All of former mayor Kwame Kilpatrick’s incompetence could not have created the ongoing occupation of Detroit by the thieves in high places. The outreach to the United Nations is important for another reason. It points out that millions of Americans live an existence far from the myth of the great country. They are struggling to survive just like millions in the so-called third world. It is the gangsters who run the show in Baghdad and in Michigan too.

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TIME on Iraq War: What Did We Do to Deserve This?


(Credit: U.S. Army/cc/flickr)With Iraq in crisis, many corporate news accounts treat the US war there as if it was something that was done to us, and the ensuing chaos proof that the good intentions of a US superpower cannot overcome tribal grievances.

Michael Crowley‘s cover story for Time (6/19/14), “The End of Iraq,” might be the quintessential example. He writes:

The rapid march by ISIS from Syria into Iraq is only partly about the troubled land where the US lost almost 4,500 lives and spent nearly $1 trillion in increasingly vain hopes of establishing a stable, friendly democracy.

We tried to bring them a stable democracy, and look at what they’re doing.

Crowley’s statistic, of course, dismisses roughly 99 out of 100 human lives lost as a result of

(Photo: invasion of Iraq. But he wants to say that this is not even just about Iraq, but about Islamic radicalism from Nigeria to Pakistan. To Crowley, Osama bin Laden’s “fundamentalist ideology–and its cold logic of murder in God’s name–arguably has broader reach than ever.” And so in Iraq, the story is less about the brutal US invasion and more about inevitable history, a place where

ancient hatreds are grinding the country to bits. Washington has reacted with shock–no one saw it coming–and the usual finger pointing, but today’s Washington is a place where history is measured in hourly news cycles and 140-character riffs. What’s happening in Iraq is the work of centuries, the latest chapter in the story of a religious schism between Sunni and Shi’ite that was already old news a thousand years ago.

Why feel too bad about a 10-year-old invasion if what’s really happening is “the work of centuries”? The notion of an intractable, tribal religious war is popular in the press, but it has been questioned; see Murtaza Hussain’s “The Myth of the 1,400-Year Sunni/Shia War” (Al Jazeera7/9/13), for instance. And it functions as a way of letting the US off the hook for unleashing it. As Crowley writes, “To Americans weary of the Middle East, the urge is strong to close our eyes and, as Sarah Palin once put it so coarsely, ‘let Allah sort it out.'”

To be clear, Crowley doesn’t agree with regional expert Palin:

As long as the global economy still runs on Middle Eastern oil, Sunni radicals plot terrorist attacks against the West and Iran’s leaders pursue nuclear technology, the US cannot turn its back.

Time’s view of the Middle East, a place where “hatred, greed and tribalism” overwhelm “the spirit of liberty.” (Photo:

One might assume that “nuclear technology” is code for weapons; Iran says it has no interest in the bomb, and there is no evidence that they do. But Time knows otherwise, as Crowley later writes of “Shi’ite Iran’s march toward a nuclear weapon.”

The language about “turning its back” seems to want to let the US off the hook for starting the Iraq War–and give a green light for intervening in its next phase with a clear conscience. If you don’t think that line quite does it, Crowley also writes:

What Leon Trotsky supposedly said about war is also true of this war-torn region: Americans may not be interested in the Middle East. But the Middle East is interested in us.

Crowley is back to arguing that the region’s problems are due to a religious conflict the West simply cannot fathom, as he wonders: “But how could the secular West hope to understand cultures in which religion is government, scripture is law and the past defines the future?”

The piece closes by stating its premise quite clearly, with Time explaining:

On a deeper level, the blame belongs to history itself. At this ancient crossroads of the human drama, the US’s failure echoes earlier failures by the European powers, by the Ottoman pashas, by the Crusaders, by Alexander the Great. The civil war of Muslim against Muslim, brother against brother, plays out in the same region that gave us Cain vs. Abel. George W. Bush spoke of the spirit of liberty, and Obama often invokes the spirit of cooperation. Both speak to something powerful in the modern heart. But neither man–nor America itself–fully appreciated until now the continuing reign of much older spirits: hatred, greed and tribalism. Those spirits are loosed again, and the whole world will pay a price.

We offered them the spirits of cooperation and liberty and the modern heart, and this is the thanks we get. It’s almost as if some people don’t appreciate being invaded.

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