Archive | November 10th, 2015

Held in Guantanamo for 13 Years without Trial

NOVANEWS

Younous Chekkouri: Held in Guantanamo for 13 Years without Trial: Senator Feinstein Defends the Empire Against “Freeing the Innocent”

By William M. Boardman on November 09, 2015

US goes on punishing Younous Chekkouri for, well, nothing really….

Younous-headshot

What do you say about the blameless man who was held at the Guantanamo concentration camp for 13 years, without trial, without charges against him, without credible evidence that he had done anything remotely deserving of 13 years of torture and isolation, with no hope of anything remotely like justice?

If you happened to be US senator Dianne Feinstein, you might write a chilly op-ed piece for The New York Times, calling for the umpteenth time since 2007 for closing the festering moral abscess you previously supported. In your op-ed you won’t mention those eight years of failure to close the human rights crime scene in Cuba because, after all, you never tried very hard to get it closed. You just tried hard to get on the record appearing to try to get it closed. In 2008, you even sounded critical of Guantanamo, without actually challenging any of its underlying assumptions:

Cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment of prisoners under American control violates our nation’s laws and values….

It damages America’s reputation in the world and serves as a recruitment tool for our enemies….

Perhaps most importantly, it has also limited our ability to obtain reliable and usable intelligence to help combat the war on terror, prevent additional threats and bring to justice those who have sought to harm our country.

So now, in late 2015, do you stand up for the freedom of a former Guantanamo prisoner jailed in Morocco, after US promises of freedom were betrayed weeks ago? Not even close – instead you write this torpid op-ed in which you fester first over the way jihadists use Guantanamo as a recruiting tool (and why wouldn’t they? Even you sort of admit that our torture camp is “a violation of the rule of law” – and has been since the beginning, when you supported it). Then you fret over the expense of running a lawless prison camp (you don’t call it “lawless”) and you never, never mention any victim by name or acknowledge the ghastly injustices they have suffered. You certainly show no concern for Younous Chekkouri and his continued abuse with US complicity. Instead you only note, appallingly casually, that:

During the Bush administration, 779 people were brought to Guantánamo, all without charge. Over time we’ve learned that many were simply at the wrong place at the wrong time and shouldn’t have been detained in the first place. [emphasis added]

Feinstein, as a 1% rich California Democrat, has neatly portrayed herself as an ugly example of the worst of America’s callous disregard for the humanity of others. Feinstein has expressed the icy, imperial view with the familiar moral numbness, the hardened indifference that has characterized US national behavior in its extreme form since 2001. Anyone with an open mind, paying the slightest attention to the emergence of the Guantanamo gulag, learned quickly at the start that the place was a moral black hole and a vicious judicial sham. Guantanamo was created precisely to allow the US to operate outside the law, as literally an outlaw nation. The US was paying bonuses for prisoners, any prisoners, regardless of evidence, regardless of the credibility of the accuser, regardless of any rational process in the midst of the nation’s narcissistic post-911 panic.

For all her lack of humanity, Senator Feinstein is hardly the worst of Congress

Feinstein does not acknowledge her role in the crime of Guantanamo, nor does she acknowledge directly that it is a crime at all. Her appeal is to others in Congress who continue to insist that the US continue committing Guantanamo crimes in perpetuity. In this context, her suggestion that Congress allow the US to set free the 53 Guantanamo hostages already cleared for release is an almost radical idea. Yes, she almost calls outright for the US to free the innocent. But not quite. Her Guantanamo “solution” reads like an Andy Borowitz column, except the senator is serious:

In particular, we need a proposal for bringing detainees to the United States and holding them securely for as long as necessary.

That’s exactly the problem with Guantanamo! “Detainees” are extra-legal prisoners, they are hostages, they can be held indefinitely, without charges, without evidence of wrongdoing, with no more against them than “simply being at the wrong place at the wrong time” (a rather apt description of Feinstein as a senator). This solution is a corrupt manipulation that does nothing to restore the rule of international law, the principle of due process of law, or any of the other affronts to justice the US continues to make with impunity.

This is not an extreme rendition of Feinstein’s argument. She reiterated the lawlessness she endorses in even clearer terms a few paragraphs later, leaving it up to the US to decide what to do about people against whom there is no evidence:

Third, for those relatively few detainees who can’t be tried because of a lack of evidence but still need to be held until the end of hostilities, bringing them to the United States presents a more cost-effective option. [emphasis added]

So who decides that these people “need to be held”? And more important, who decided that we have reached “the end of hostilities”? Feinstein assumes the US is engaged in endless war, and expresses no objection to that. She wants to close Guantanamo as prison real estate. That’s all. She has no problem with continuing the lawless behavior Guantanamo represents as long as it’s more out of sight. Hers is the consensus view in national politics. Like her equally shabby peers, she’s a politician, she’s concerned only about looking good, she doesn’t care about doing good.

US bought Chekkouri as a hostage, paid good money for him

“779 people were brought to Guantanamo, all without charge,” writes Feinstein with the all-too-common official attitude: “stuff happens.” In a just world, stuff would be happening to the moral outlaws who perpetrated and still maintain the blatant criminal enterprise that Guantanamo has been from the start. If Feinstein had any compassion, she could highlight the Younous Chekkouri case as an example of the moral chaos created by US Guantanamo policy. Secret military files titled “Gitmo Files” published by Wikileaks, including Chekkouri’s case, have been available since April 2011.

In October 2005, officials at Guantanamo acknowledged in writing that Chekkouri was a relief worker who had done relief work and had no identifiable connection with any terrorist group (reiterating similar circumstantial, non-substantive findings in November 2004). Some of the assumed facts had been gathered by torturing Chekkouri and others. Nevertheless, these officials used conclusory inferences unsupported by any evidence as the basis for continuing to hold Chekkouri. The officials promised “a meaningful opportunity to be heard.” The 16-page, declassified transcript of an undated status review hearing (#002562) portrays the tribunal as merely reiterating the conclusory inferences without presenting supporting evidence. The transcript portrays Chekkouri as open, direct, responsive to all questions, and denying any terrorist activity or connection (except for fellow prisoners). After several similar hearings, Chekkouri was “recommended for further detention” in an official assessment in November 2008 that includes much more information (true or false) than was addressed in the available records of the “meaningful opportunities to be heard.”

Younous Abdurrahman Chekkouri, now 47, is represented by the UK human rights organization Reprieve, which says about its work: “We help people who suffer extreme human rights abuses at the hands of the world’s most powerful governments.” Reprieve is still pushing Chekkouri’s case because he is still not free, even though he has been released from Guantanamo 13 years after he was kidnapped:

Younous was doing charity work in Afghanistan and starting a business when he was rounded up with other Arabs and taken to a prison in Kandahar.

He was sold to US forces for a bounty and then taken to Guantánamo Bay. He was held without charge for 14 years before finally being released to his native Morocco in September 2015.

Now the US is tolerating a substitute “Morocc-antanamo” holding Chekkouri

In 2011, attorneys for Chekkouri challenged the supposed evidence against him in a habeas corpus hearing. The US government’s case fell apart and Chekkouri was eventually re-classified as suitable for transfer. In September 2015, the US transferred Chekkouri from Guantanamo to Morocco, where he was born in 1968. The Moroccans took Chekkouri into custody immediately and he remains in custody, under threat of a Moroccan trial based on the discredited US evidence. US officials have told Reprieve that they released Chekkouri into Moroccan custody on the understanding that he would not face charges and that he would be held no more than 72 hours for any reason. The Moroccan government says there was no such understanding. Attorney Cori Crider, who represents Chekkouri and is a director at Reprieve, said on November 5:

Someone is just not telling the truth here. Either US State Department officials misled me and my client about Morocco’s intentions when my client was in Guantánamo, or Moroccan officials have been making diplomatic promises freely and breaking them just as fast. Which is it? And if the State Department did tell Mr. Chekkouri the truth and the promises have been broken, why isn’t this being made a major issue in US-Moroccan relations now?

Attorney Crider also wrote to US attorney general Loretta Lynch, who was then visiting Morocco,asking her to “urgently intervene” to persuade Moroccan authorities to honor the assurances made by the US in order to get Chekkouri to agree to go to Morocco. So far, Attorney General Lynch is not known to have acted to honor her government’s promises. US ambassador to Morocco Dwight Bush has refused to offer any assistance. Officials at the US State Department have apparently done nothing for Chekkouri, even though they had assured him he would be held no more than 72 hours and he has in fact been imprisoned since September 15 in Morocco, where his next hearing is scheduled for December 3.

This is all of a piece of official US bad faith on Guantanamo. Let Morocco look bad doing American dirty work (like exporting prisoners for torture). The US can claim clean hands and no responsibility, and it’s all a degenerate lie in service of Dick Cheney’s version of American exceptionalism.

And Dianne Feinstein, along with most of the rest of Congress, is part of the corrupt charade. With all the moral fervor of a profitable plantation owner trying to weasel her way onto the right side of history, Feinstein calls for closing Guantanamo, sooner or later, some day, like the President says he wants, and “Congress should be working with him to finally shut it down.” Sure, the President ordered Guantanamo closed his first day in office, then dithered fecklessly from January 2009 till now, while Congress was led by fear-mongering torture-tolerating toadies who were determined to punish someone, anyone, regardless of guilt, so long as the person was some third world color. Feinstein speaks no truth to that power, she does not acknowledge that Guantanamo is an American outrage that is entirely of America’s making, entirely of America’s perpetuation, and entirely to America’s shame, were America capable of feeling shame any more.

By any reasonable standard, Guantanamo and the rest of the US secret torture and incarceration network represent a continuing, collective crime against humanity. Meanwhile, at Guantanamo, the US is again inflicting genital searches on prisoners before they can meet with their attorneys, sometimes keeping such simple due process from going forward. In all fairness, America is not at all exceptional in such crimes.

William M. Boardman has over 40 years experience in theatre, radio, TV, print journalism, and non-fiction, including 20 years in the Vermont judiciary. He has received honors from Writers Guild of America, Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Vermont Life magazine, and an Emmy Award nomination from the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

Posted in Middle East, USAComments Off on Held in Guantanamo for 13 Years without Trial

War, Repression and International Gangsterism: U.S. State Policy from Benghazi to Baltimore

NOVANEWS

By Ajamu Baraka

BARAKA_ObamaStroll

“Elements in Congress and the Obama administration suppressed the facts around the mission in Libya because those activities contravened both U.S. and international law.”

A mere two months after clashes between black youth and police in Baltimore following the murder of Freddie Gray while in police custody, President Obama’s Department of Justice (DOJ) announced the indictment of twenty-four year old Raymon Carter for his alleged involvement in the torching of a CVS pharmacy. The national government’s intervention into the case had an unmistakable message: if you engage in “unauthorized” forms of resistance – in this case, crimes against property – expect to confront the full power of the national government.

U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein made it even clearer: “Anyone in the future who participates in a ‘riot’ should know that police, prosecutors and citizens will track them down and send them to prison.”

This aggressive and speedy move on the part of the DOJ to criminalize poor, black kids in Baltimore differed sharply from the DOJ approach to high government officials, armed servants of the state at the local level and the big banks and investment firms. For the officials involved in torture under the Bush Administration, the financial gangsters who engineered the 2008 economic crisis, and the killer cops across the country who have yet to experience one indictment from Obama’s DOJ after months of “investigations,” DOJ-granted impunity has been the operative principle in practice.

But Obama’s DOJ has not been the only state institution involved in providing cover and impunity for repression and criminality in the service of the capitalist oligarchy.

Impunity for State Terrorism: The Real Story of Benghazi

What might seem oppositional and important in the game of U.S. politics is usually insignificant and diversionary. Hillary Clinton’s appearance before the House Select Committee, ostensibly established to conduct a bi-partisan investigation into the events that led to the death of Christopher Stevens and three other U.S. citizens on September 11, 2012, was a case in point.

Despite the supposed acrimony between the two ruling class parties in Congress, an ideological consensus exists around the overall strategic commitment to maintain U.S. global dominance. On that ultimate objective both corporate parties share an interest in shifting public attention away from state policies and actions that demonstrate Washington’s absolute commitment to the principle of “by any means necessary” for maintaining and advancing the interests of the White supremacist, patriarchal, colonial/capitalist order.

For example, initially the Republican majority’s decision to launch another investigation into the events of 2012 was met with a considerable amount of consternation on the part of some Democrats who saw the hearings as just another effort to sabotage Clinton’s run for the Presidency. However, when the Republicans settled on the issue of Clinton’s emails the Democrats were concerned that her use of a private server might cause some embarrassment for her candidacy, but it was also clear that the hearings were going to be rigged and the real questions related to Benghazi would never be raised.

If the House Committee had really been committed to public accountability and surfacing the truth, there were a number of questions that could have been raised such as: 1) what was the role of the facility that was attacked? Was it a U.S. Consulate, a CIA facility or some other entity? 2) Why were those facilities set up so quickly even before a stable government was established in the aftermath of the destruction of the Libyan state? 3) Why were there estimated to be more than twenty CIA personnel on the ground in Benghazi just miles from the facility on the night of the attack and what was the mission of those CIA personnel? And 4) Why did the U.S. government contract with an organization to provide security for the facility that had clear ties to Jihadist groups that the U.S. considered as part of the international terrorist networks?

“It was also clear that the hearings were going to be rigged and the real questions related to Benghazi would never be raised.”

These kinds of questions that would have delved into U.S. involvement in Libya were not raised for two reasons: 1) The Syrian issue – Congress didn’t want the public to focus too much attention on the question of the timeline of U.S. involvement. Although many right-wing Republicans were upset that the Obama administration was not more aggressive with more open and direct support for its regime change strategy, everyone in Congress knows that the narrative of reluctant and recent involvement on the part of the Obama administration in the events in Syria is pure fiction. And 2) elements in Congress and the Obama administration, with the full collaboration of the corporate press, have suppressed the facts around the mission of the CIA and the role of the State Department in Libya during the period leading to the attack on the two compounds because those activities contravened both U.S. and international law.

Investigative journalist Seymore Hersh revealed that a classified annex to a report prepared by the Senate Intelligence Committee on Benghazi that was not made public, discussed a secret agreement made in early 2012 between the Obama and Erdogan administration in Turkey to run an arms supply line from Libya, using arms secured with the overthrow of the Libya state, to the so-called rebel forces in Syria. The operation was run by CIA director David Petraeus, and the elements that received support included jihadist groups, including the Al Nusrah Front, al-Qaeda’s official Syrian affiliate.

So even though information on the real role of the U.S. in the war in Syria is getting more coverage, the elites in Congress and the Administration were still not interested in calling too much attention to the fact that the U.S. provided material support to groups that it defined as terrorists which technically under U.S. law should have made that assistance prosecutable.

Vice President Joe Biden even stated publically that governments allied with the U.S. and their nationals were supplying arms to elements that they knew were terrorists and U.S. officials knew it:

“They poured hundreds of millions of dollars and thousands of tons of weapons into anyone who would fight against Assad. Except that the people who were being supplied were al-Nusra and al-Qaeda and the extremist elements of jihadist coming from other parts of the world. ”

Yet not one of these individuals or government officials, many who travel on a regular basis to the U.S. and other Western nations, have been charged or had sanctions applied to them. In fact, in a pathetic and disingenuous comment, Biden claims that even though it was pointed out to those states by U.S. officials that their support was going to extremist jihadists forces, “We could not convince our colleagues to stop supplying them.”

“The elements that received support included jihadist groups, including the Al Nusrah Front, al-Qaeda’s official Syrian affiliate.”

Obviously for the Obama Administration charging them, freezing their bank accounts, slapping sanctions on the government as was done with the governments and individuals in Iran and Russia was out of the question.

This is why for anyone whose vision is not distorted by the myopia of white supremacist, capitalist ideology, the crude class politics of the DOJ’s decision to prosecute the young resisters in Baltimore is so outrageous.

Benghazi is only a symptom of a pattern of criminal activity on the part of U.S. officials from both parties. From the illegal attacks on Iraq and Libya, subversion in Syria and Venezuela, surveillance, police state repression and mass incarceration domestically, coups in Honduras and Haiti, support for genocide in Yemen, and the continued occupation of Palestine, it is clear that what unites the elites of both parties is their unshakable commitment to maintaining the power of the U.S./EU/NATO axis of domination as the institutional expressions of concentrated white power for as long as possible.

In the meantime, Raymon Carter is facing years in prison because the state claims it has a right to hunt down and prosecute whomever it defines as criminals.

But the social world is not static and the balance of forces is shifting. One day using that same logic but informed by an alternative ethical framework that centers real justice, the people will be in a position to hunt down and bring to justice the international colonial gangsters who destroy our earth, torture, exploit and bring death to countless millions.

 

Posted in USAComments Off on War, Repression and International Gangsterism: U.S. State Policy from Benghazi to Baltimore

I$raHell Cruelest Punishments Reserved for Palestinians

NOVANEWS

palestine

The Abu Jamal family lives in an apartment complex near the bottom of the valley in Jabal al-Mukabir, a neighborhood in occupied East Jerusalem.

On the building’s top floor, a thin trail of ash leads to what was once Ghassan Abu Jamal’s apartment.

It is now a chaotic mess of mangled iron, piles of jagged cement and destroyed furniture – the remains of a home that was blown up from the inside.

Ghassan Abu Jamal, along with his cousin Udai Abu Jamal, entered a synagogue in West Jerusalem one year ago and shot dead four people before being killed by an Israeli soldier.

On the morning of 6 October, the Israeli army placed enough explosives in Ghassan’s small apartment to destroy it, as well as that of his brother Mouria, who lived next door.

This was the first home to be demolished as part of an onslaught of reprisals Israel has implemented in Jerusalem since a sharp rise in violence began at the start of October.

Israel refers to the practice of destroying the homes of Palestinian resistance fighters or their families as punitive demolitions.

Since then, four more homes have been punitively demolished or sealed by Israel, while seven more demolition orders have been issued and at least 16 homes surveyed for possible destruction.

The policy is holdover from the emergency laws introduced by Palestine’s British colonial rulers in 1945.

Notably, Israel only implements the practice for suspected Palestinian attackers, never for Jewish perpetrators or suspects or their families.

Only for Palestinians

While sitting amongst these ruins under a ceiling that appears on the verge of collapse, Mouria Abu Jamal told The Electronic Intifada: “We don’t leave Jabal al-Mukabir anymore. There is nowhere to go.”

Israel has targeted the residents of Jabal al-Mukabir, especially the Abu Jamal family, with myriad forms of collective punishment: homes have been demolished, residency rights stripped, movement impeded.

When the soldiers arrived at Ghassan’s home the morning of 6 October, it was already empty. Nadia, Ghassan’s wife from a village east of the separation wall in the occupied West Bank, had already had her Jerusalem residency stripped by Israel when her husband died, a move human rights group B’Tselem called “unlawful punishment.”

She was forced to leave Jerusalem in July, along with her three children, aged 3, 4 and 6.

During the pre-dawn demolition of Ghassan’s home, soldiers had beaten Ghassan’s cousin Alaa with their rifles, seriously wounding him. Medical records from the clinic that treated him following the attack state that his right elbow was swollen from “trauma by a heavy object.”

A week later, Alaa drove his car into the Jerusalem light rail and reportedly stabbed several Israelis, killing one and seriously injuring another, before he was shot to death.

Yet Israel maintains that the practice of demolishing the family homes of Palestinian “terror” suspects deters future attacks.

But a decade ago, an Israeli army investigative committee disagreed.

It concluded, in the words of Haaretz, that “the damage caused by demolitions outweighs their benefits, since whatever discouragement they cause is significantly eclipsed by the level of hate and fury they create.”

Dalia Kerstein of Hamoked, one of the Israeli human rights organizations currently challenging the practice, says that the demolitions expose Israel’s discrimination. But she emphasizes that she is opposed to the practice for anyone.

According to a recent poll, however, 80 percent of Israeli Jews support punitive demolitions of Palestinian homes. More than half said they would oppose doing the same to Jews.

That popularity might be the real reason Israeli leaders continue the practice.

“They call us killers”

Israel occupied East Jerusalem along with the rest of the West Bank in 1967. Its subsequent annexation of the city has not been recognized by any country and was declared null and void by the UN Security Council.

 

The Fourth Geneva Convention, which the UN Security Council says applies to the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem, states that no one “may be punished for an offense he or she has not personally committed.”

The prohibition on collective punishment includes reprisals against “persons and their property.”

Mouria and his family of three, including a 4-month-old baby, now sleep in the room directly beneath the heavy rubble. The ceiling is cracked and leaking from the heavy weight of the debris, which Mouria says he can’t afford to remove.

There are three more homes in the Abu Jamal complex threatened with demolition: Alaa’s family home, where his 29-year-old wife and three children aged between 4 and 8 live, was immediately issued with a demolition order.

Other members of the family have also received administrative demolition orders from the Israeli-imposed Jerusalem municipality for building without a nearly impossible to obtain permit.

“The municipality does its part,” Hamoked’s Kerstein says, referring to how the city authorities work with the rest of the Israeli system to collectively punish the families of accused Palestinians.

Meanwhile, Israel has erected dozens of roadblocks and checkpoints within Palestinian neighborhoods in East Jerusalem.

Mouria, who is 42, says new roadblocks are concentrated inside Jabal al-Mukabir, rather than on the outskirts of the neighborhood as was the case during the second intifada of the early 2000s.

“They divided the village, families. We cannot reach others, children cannot go to school,” Mouria told The Electronic Intifada. He says young children are now forced to take two buses to reach their school instead of one because the routes are impeded.

Ir Amim has been closely monitoring the roadblocks in East Jerusalem.

The Israeli human rights group’s Betty Hirschman told The Electronic Intifada that “while some of the checkpoints and closures separate Palestinian from Jewish neighborhoods, some block internal roads – the most severe and inexplicable form of collective punishment, prohibiting school access for children among other ramifications.”

And at the checkpoints surrounding the neighborhood, Mouria says he and his family are singled out by the soldiers operating them: “We are forced to take off our clothes, they call us killers.”

Following his cousin Ghassan’s attack in November, Mouria was fired from his construction job and hasn’t been able to find work since.

Mutaz, Udai’s brother, was also fired from his gardening job following the attack.

“Once they see our name, it’s over.” Mouria says he has now stopped looking for work.

The fate of Alaa’s family, along with all families whose sons have been accused of perpetrating attacks, now rests with the Israeli high court, which has so far ruled consistently in favor of punishing family members.

On 22 October, the court temporarily stayed the demolitions, asking for more evidence that supports the state’s assertion that they function as a deterrent.

The Israeli government submitted secret evidence in support of its claims.

But for Mouria, the purpose of the home demolitions, the checkpoints and the constant harassment by soldiers is clear: “They want to show their power.”

Posted in Palestine Affairs, ZIO-NAZIComments Off on I$raHell Cruelest Punishments Reserved for Palestinians

Criminal Law Suit Against Latin American Media for Expressing “Solidarity with the Palestinian People”

NOVANEWS

Opened against the Director of “Resumen Latinoamericano”

Global Research
carlos Aznarez

This time I must speak in first person because, after 22 years of working for and directing the communication platform “Resumen Latinoamericano” (journal, radio and TV Station), sadly I find myself immersed confronted by an action that violates freedom of speech, of information and of thought, a human right that is explicitly protected by the Constitution.

How did everything start? A few days ago, I received in my e-mailbox, a message from Google Inc, written in English, in which they informed me that “in the next 10 days” Google would have to give access to the Justice system to all my e-mail accounts, because of an intimation formulated by the Court of First Instance for the Criminal, Contraventions and Offences No. 28, where the cause Number 7271/15 is radicated.

In this singular way, I found out about this incredible abuse of my privacy as a journalist, as my e-mail is primarily a medium of exchange of information with colleagues or media outlet, apart from the personal information that anyone has in their box. Such meddling is based on a criminal complaint made by the Delegation of Argentine Jewish Associations (in Spanish acronym, DAIA) accusing me for “being in solidarity” with the Palestinian people.

DAIA and its lawyers presented themselves before the Public Prosecutor’s Office No. 25 to accuse me of “discriminatory organization and propaganda”, brandishing the argument of “anti-Semitism”. The reasons given for that procedure are illogical and offend me as a citizen and as a journalist.

DAIA points to my participation in an activity of solidarity with the Palestine People in August 2014, when tons of Nazi Bombs were thrown in Gaza, causing thousands of innocent deaths —many of them children—, just as what is happening nowadays in West Bank. They consider my presence there to be criminal.

In that occasion, as in many others, due to my professional activity, carried out in Resumen Latinoamericano journal as well as in collaboration with international media, such as Russia Today, HispanTv or ALBA Tv, I had to broadcast the alternatives of the act and I was invited to express my opinion about what was happening in Gaza.

Just the fact of being there with other Argentinian men and women, crudely describing what was happening in Gaza and along all Palestinian territory, seems to be an offense to my accusers, and this is why they try to prosecute me, asking for a prison sentence, in order to commence an open persecution to the right to information, expression and opinion.To add with your solidarity write your name and place where you live to:

solidaridadconcarlosaznarez@hotmail.com,

Thanks to everyone

Carlos Aznarez Solidarity Committee

www.resumenlatinoamericano.org,

www.resumenmediooriente.org,

Global Research expresses its solidarity with Carlos Aznarez

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The New York Times’ 9/11 Propaganda

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Global Research
9-11

The New York Times led the propaganda behind 9/11 and the 9/11 Wars. It did so by ignoring many of the most relevant facts, by promoting false official accounts, and by belittling those who questioned the 9/11 events. The Times eventually offered a weak public apology for its uncritical support of the Bush Administration’s obviously bogus Iraq War justifications. However, it has yet to apologize for its role in selling the official account of 9/11, a story built on just as many falsehoods. Instead, the newspaper continues to propagandize about the attacks while putting down Americans who seek the truth about what happened.

The New York “newspaper of record” has published many articles that promote official explanations for the events of 9/11. These have included support for the Pancake Theory, the diesel fuel theory for WTC 7, claims based on the torture testimony of an alleged top al Qaeda leader, and accounts of NORAD notification and response to the hijackings. Since then, U.S. authorities have said that none of those explanations were true. However, the Times never expressed regret for reporting the misleading information.

tta53

Instead, the Times continued to sell every different official explanation. When a new government theory for destruction of the WTC was put forth, it was immediately promoted. The newspaper never reported any critical analysis of the official accounts, despite the fact that all of them, including the final reports for the Twin Towers and WTC 7, have been proven to be wrong.

When the fourth story for how the North American air defenses failed—the one that said U.S. military officers had spent three years giving “false testimony,” the Times pushed it as fact. Its article on the subject simply closed the matter with the statement that “someone will still have to explain why the military, with far greater resources and more time for investigation, could not come up with the real story until the 9/11 commission forced it to admit the truth.” The idea that military officers might have started out telling the truth, thereby leaving very sensitive questions to be answered, and that the 9/11 Commission was now being false, apparently never occurred to the editors.

Meanwhile, the newspaper has made considerable efforts to belittle Americans who question the official account of 9/11.

In June 2006, the Times published a snarky account of a grassroots conference of 9/11 investigators. The article focused on sensational descriptions of the participants, including what it called “a long­haired fellow named hummux who, on and off, lived in a cave for 15 years.’’ The fact that Dr. hummux was a PhD physicist who had worked on the Strategic Defense Initiative for 20 years was not mentioned. TheTimes simply distorted his experience living with a Native American tribe and falsely stated that he had lived in a cave. No mention was made of serious, undisputed facts that were presented at the conference.

A few months later, at the fifth anniversary of 9/11, the Times published another propaganda article in support of the politically timed reports from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). The article began by declaring that those who questioned 9/11 were “an angry minority,” while minimizing a national Scripps Howard poll, published just a month earlier. The poll showed that “More than a third of the American public suspects that federal officials assisted in the 9/11 terrorist attacks or took no action to stop them so the United States could go to war in the Middle East.” That is, the number of Americans who thought that federal officials were behind the attacks (36%) was on par with the percentage of Americans who had voted for the president. Yet the Times inferred that it was only a small fraction of the population who questioned 911.

The September 2006 article promoted one Brent Blanchard as a demolition expert, implying that hisrecent essay refuted any suggestions that the WTC buildings were demolished. As I told the reporter Jim Dwyer, when he interviewed me for the article, “Mr. Blanchard may be a good photographer, but the uninformative bluster that fills the first two and a half pages of this piece, and a good deal throughout the paper, shows that he is not a good writer.” The fact that Blanchard was only a photographer and not a demolition expert was not mentioned by Dwyer, nor was my point-by-point refutation of Blanchard’s limited arguments. Instead, Dwyer purposefully ignored the evidence and ended his article with another quote from Blanchard.

More recently, perhaps in response to another large billboard posted right outside the Times offices, the newspaper has renewed its 9/11 propaganda efforts. In one new article, reporter Mark Leibovich wonders “why is it good to tell the truth but bad to be a ‘Truther’.” Leibovich turns to former White House spokesman Ari Fleischer for support. Of course, the article does not refer to Fleischer’s curious behavior on the morning of 9/11, which stands among the unresolved questions. Instead, Fleischer’s input is that he uses the term “truther” as an epithet (read “truth nigger”), “floating a notion and letting it hang there to absorb sinister connotations.” Leibovich goes on to portray 9/11 questioning as just another form of ridiculous “trutherism” that is “stranger than fiction.“

Leibovich and his colleagues at the Times continue to suggest that they are unaware of the manyincredible facts about 9/11 that call out for critical investigation. At this point, however, that level of ignorance is not believable and the Times’ track record shows that it will never take an honest and objective approach to the events of 9/11. As one former Times reporter stated, the paper’s slogan that it provides all the news ‘fit to print’ really means that it provides all the news that’s fit to serve the powerful. And as long as the needs of the powerful differ from the needs of the people, the truth will be something that is unavailable at the New York Times.

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Gazing into the Abyss. Unending Illegal U.S. War-making Is Creating a “Domestic Monster”

NOVANEWS
Global Research
Image result for BUSH CARTOON

Is it impossible to conceive of a peacetime USA?

Culturally and politically, American leaders with both political parties have declined to provide a vision to the American people of a country that has declared an end to war in the Middle East and the resumption of a peace time society.

Instead, the last 14 years of war have produced an overgrown Executive branch, unconstrained by law, by Congress or the judiciary.

Inder Comar Esq

If nothing is done, the Executive branch, as a domestic institution, will almost certainly overwhelm Congress and the courts and will permanently disrupt the careful checks-and-balances system that is the hallmark of the American constitutional order. There is a real threat that unending war will create a domestic monster.

The hallmark of this overgrown Executive is the continued and unabashed violations of law with respect to military action.

Today, the Executive branch wallows in an aggressively militant governmental apparatus that routinely violates law and expands the boundaries — both legally and culturally — of permissible violent government conduct.

Bush-era illegality in the form of wars of aggression, torture, war crimes and domestic spying caused outrage amongst the public when these crimes were initially revealed.

But outrage without an outlet has, through some reverse osmosis, transmuted itself into a permanent cultural numbness.

The continued silence amongst members of the cultural, social and governmental elite with respect to Bush-era crimes permits a similar silence to surround illegal activities by the Obama Administration.

For example, the public seems to willingly accept the notion that the use of drone strikes (which in some instances may constitute illegal acts of aggression and crimes against humanity), the continued use of indefinite detentions at Guantanamo Bay and the normalization of domestic surveillance powers under national security auspices are the “new normal” — no matter whether laws are broken.

There is very little legal basis for Obama’s bombing of Syria, both internationally and domestically. In a functioning democracy, the bombing of a sovereign country would create widespread political discussion. Yet the decision in the US to bomb Syria was made practically overnight.

The same was true of the recent announcement — again, met with silence — that US ground forces would begin to enter Syria.

Even the bombing of a hospital in Kunduz, in what appears to be a clear prima facie war crime, produces mute commentary.

Carl Schmitt, the philosopher most associated with the intellectual defense of National Socialism, applauded a strong, law-breaking executive on the grounds of what he termed the “state of exception.”

Schmitt believed that in times of crises, a sovereign had to act outside of the normal constitutional framework in order to save society from existential threats. Schmitt thus defended the sovereign who violated the law, if in so doing, the sovereign could help a society delineate between friends and enemies, and give meaning to its citizens.

Nothing upset Schmitt more than the weakness of societies that had adopted liberalism, societies he viewed as hopelessly depoliticized and without the glory associated with a strong state.

Schmitt’s foul logic does much to explain the current “state of exception” in US politics. The supposed and ever present threat of terrorism is used as a means for the Executive branch to act outside of the law in order to save the law. Whether it is a Democrat or Republican in the White House, the law breaking remains the same.

Meanwhile, such illegal international actions threaten to shatter the remaining shards of what is left of the global peace. In attempting to “defend freedom” by the “war on terror,” the American government and its allies create further instability, which in turn creates additional violence directed against Americans. The CIA refers to this as “blowback.” It is not a difficult concept to grasp, and the fact that US leaders refuse to alter their conduct in the face of blowback means they are either too dense or too intentional in their use of military action abroad. Either conclusion should be frightening to a thinking person.

It is Hannah Arendt, another German thinker,  whose 20th century insights are even more profound in this current time. In her classic, Eichmann in Jerusalem, she coined the “banality of evil” as a phrase that described the seeming stupidity (or at least the clumsiness) of people like Adolph Eichmann, who were responsible for countless atrocities and yet were able to defend their actions with trite rationalizations that they were simply doing their jobs, or following orders.

Today, there is a similar caustic fog that shrouds the culture, a darkness that no one speaks of, and an acceptance of criminal conduct by those in power. Empathy towards the countless innocent victims (perhaps millions at this point) who have been killed in their homes, their schools, or even at their own weddings, all in the name of the War on Terror, is entirely absent from everyday discourse.

Americans need only look to their Founders to understand the consequences of illegal warmaking. James Madison, the chief drafter of the US Constitution, observed,

“Of all the enemies of true liberty, war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded, because it comprises and develops the germ of every other. War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debts and taxes; and armies, and debts, and taxes are the known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few.

“In war, too, the discretionary power of the Executive is extended; its influence in dealing out offices, honors and emoluments is multiplied; and all the means of seducing the minds, are added to those of subduing the force, of the people.”

As Madison observed, war itself becomes a threat to domestic security and individual liberty. It acts as the pretext for an overgrown Executive and the beginnings of a criminal state.

Madison’s classical liberalism is now threatened by the views of Schmitt and other statists, who seemingly welcome the growth of the “unitary Executive” and the beginnings of domestic despotism.

So long as Americans give their leaders carte blanche to wage war in their name, to break laws domestically and internationally, and to avoid scrutiny or oversight for such conduct, then criminality will only increase, and with it, an increase in the potential for sudden instability in the global economic and political order.

“He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you.” Frederick Nietzsche, Beyond Good and Evil, aphorism 146.

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The Re-enserfment of Western Peoples. The Corporate Power Grab Which Eliminates Political Sovereignty

NOVANEWS
Global Research
stoptppbanner

The re-enserfment of Western peoples is taking place on several levels. One about which I have been writing for more than a decade comes from the offshoring of jobs. Americans, for example, have a shrinking participation in the production of the goods and services that are marketed to them.

On another level we are experiencing the financialization of the Western economy about which Michael Hudson is the leading expert (Killing The Host). Financialization is the process of removing any public presence in the economy and converting the economic surplus into interest payments to the financial sector.

These two developments deprive people of economic prospects. A third development deprives them of political rights. The Trans-Pacific and Trans-Atlantic Partnerships eliminate political sovereignty and turn governance over to global corporations.

These so called “trade partnerships” have nothing to do with trade.

These agreements negotiated in secrecy grant immunity to corporations from the laws of the countries in which they do business. This is achieved by declaring any interference by existing and prospective laws and regulations with corporate profits as restraints on trade for which corporations can sue and fine “sovereign” governments. For example, the ban in France and other counries on GMO products would be negated by the Trans-Atlantic Partnership. Democracy is simply replaced by corporate rule.

I have been meaning to write about this at length. However, others, such as Chris Hedges, are doing a good job of explaining the power grab that eliminates representative government.

The corporations are buying power cheaply. They bought the entire US House of Representatives for just under $200 million. This is what the corporations paid Congress to go along with “Fast Track,” which permits the corporations’ agent, the US Trade Representative, to negotiate in secret without congressional input or oversight.

http://www.opednews.com/articles/Almost-200-Million-Donate-by-Paola-Casale-Banking_Congress_Control_Corporations-150620-523.html

In other words, a US corporate agent deals with corporate agents in the countries that will comprise the “partnership,” and this handful of well-bribed people draw up an agreement that supplants law with the interests of corporations. No one negotiating the partnership represents the peoples’ or public’s interests. The governments of the partnership countries get to vote the deal up or down, and they will be well paid to vote for the agreement.

Once these partnerships are in effect, government itself is privatized. There is no longer any point in legislatures, presidents, prime ministers, judges. Corporate tribunals decide law and court rulings.

It is likely that these “partnerships” will have unintended consequences. For example, Russia and China are not part of the arrangements, and neither are Iran, Brazil, India, and South Africa, although seperately the Indian government appears to have been purchased by American agribusiness and is in the process of destroying its self-sufficient food production system. These countries will be the repositories for national sovereignty and public control while freedom and democracy are extinguished in the West and among the West’s Asian vassals.

Violent revolution throughout the West and the complete elimination of the One Percent is another possible outcome. Once, for example, the French people discover that they have lost all control over their diet to Monsanto and American agribusiness, the members of the French government that delivered France into dietary bondage to toxic foods are likely to be killed in the streets.

Events of this sort are possible throughout the West as peoples discover that they have lost all control over every aspect of their lives and that their only choice is revolution or death.

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The Escalation to World War? Mission Creep Drags Britain Into Quagmire of Global Conflict

NOVANEWS
Global Research
Screen-Shot-2015-11-09-at-05.34.49

The escalation to world war appears to be in motion, just waiting for the first diplomatic row to explode into something considerably worse than fighting various hydra-like bandits in Syria. Countries are being slowly dragged into the continuing violence with ever greater weapons and destructive capabilities and vociferous verbal dogfights ever more frequent.

With Russia, Iran and China on one side and the US, France, Australia and Britain plus the GCC countries, Turkey and Jordan on the other and Iraq and Syria in the middle, a lot is a stake in the world’s tinderbox.

US president Obama promised no less than 15 times to the world that American troops would not be deployed to Syria. With intensifying U.S. military operations in both Iraq and Syria, dozens of bipartisan US lawmakers issued an open letter on Friday calling for Congress to fulfill its responsibility by voting “as quickly as possible” on whether to authorize a war that is well over a year old. In the meantime, Obama has just authorised the deployment of special forces troops to Syria as it intensifies airstrikes which has coincided with Washington’s shift in approach to the conflict. As Russia intensifies its efforts, Washington is spurred to take more effective action.

There is serious political unrest at the parliamentary level in Britain. Parliament unequivocally voted for no military action in Syria in 2013 yet PM David Cameron simply lied by omission and sent fighter jets in defiance.

Just yesterday the head of the British armed forces said “Britain is “letting down” its allies by not taking part in attacking Isil’s key strongholds in Syria,” General Sir Nicholas Houghton, the Chief of the Defence Staff, said it “makes no sense” that RAF airstrikes in Iraq stop at the border, when Britain knows Isil has based its stronghold in Syria. He seems to have forgotten that Britain is a democracy and its people are not answerable to the army.

Last week Michael Fallon, the Defence Secretary, said it was “morally indefensible” that Britain was not attacking the extremist group and even went as far as to say that we should be fighting in Syria because of ISIL’s involvement in the downing of the Russian passenger plane in Egypt.

In Britain and America the political gloves are off – democratic process is suspended. The big guns are on the way.

As WSWS reports –

The US will send a squadron of F-15C fighter jets to Turkey’s Incirlik air base, the US Defense Department (DOD) announced on Friday. The nature of the US war planes, which are specifically designed for dogfight combat operations with other highly advanced fighter jets, indicates that the deployment carries a significance far beyond what its small scale would suggest.

The US is preparing for aerial combat with exactly who in Syria – Russia?

Turkey is not happy with the situation as it currently prevails. Senior government officials in Turkey have now escalated the situation by insisting they would “not hesitate” to use force against any nation’s military might. The defiant pledge has sparked fears that Turkey would not discriminate and could risk even waging war with the US.

Prime Minister Davutoglu said: “We downed a drone yesterday. If it was a plane we’d do the same. Our rules of engagement are known. Whoever violates our borders, we will give them the necessary answer.”

Meanwhile, the Chinese have confirmed aerial activity in the region.

“The J-15 warplanes will take off from the Chinese Liaoning-CV-16 aircraft carrier, which reached Syrian shores on Sept. 26 (as debkafile exclusively reported at the time). This will be a landmark event for Beijing: its first military operation in the Middle East as well the carrier’s first taste of action in conditions of real combat.”

At the same time, the Syrian government halted all flights in and out of an airport in Latakia province and the airport is currently being used by Russia and Iran as an airbase. Thousands of Iranian troops have arrived, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights confirmed.

Despite Moscow’s denial of their own ‘boots on the ground’ they are present. “We have seen Russian servicemen way outside of their airbase in Latakia, contradicting reports that Russia is not engaged in the Syrian regime’s ground offensives,” reports the Moscow based Conflict Intelligence Team.

Britain sent its Special Forces (against a parliamentary vote) to mount hit and run raids against Islamic State deep inside eastern Syria dressed in black and waving ISIS flags as insurgent fighters. Part of a force known as the Coalition Joint Special Operations Task Force, the British troops are under American command. Dubbed “smash” the units, which travel in civilian pick-ups, launch their own unmanned aerial vehicles, to scan terrain ahead of them and attack.

What type of diplomatic emergency would it be if Russian troops or air forces engaged these black clad Britons, wiped them out and then found out who they were afterwards? Will the headlines read “Russia Attacks Britain”, what then?

Different types of wars are now taking place but the actors remain the same. The US is witnessing a rival financial world order and a direct threat to its blood soaked empire.  Global Research Reports –

As the financial architecture of the world is being altered by China and Russia, the US dollar is gradually being neutralised as one of Washington’s weapon of choice. Even the monopoly of Washington’s Bretton Woods system formed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank is being directly challenged.

In response, on September 12th –  EU sanctions pushed by the US, targeted even more of Russia’s state finances, energy and arms sectors. These are sectors managed by the powerful elite around President Vladimir Putin. Russian state banks are now excluded from raising long-term loans in the EU, exports of dual-use equipment for military use in Russia are banned, future EU-Russia arms deals are banned and the EU will not export a wide range of oil industry technology. Three major state oil firms are targeted: Rosneft, Transneft and Gazprom Neft, the oil unit of gas giant Gazprom.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has openly accused the West of seeking to force a regime change in Russia through sanctions by saying “The West is showing unambiguously that they do not want to force (Russia) to change policy, they want to achieve a change of regime.” Putin, a master strategist will have all these factors in mind when it comes to Syria. And unlike Obama, Cameron, Hollande and Co, Putin is unanimously supported by the Russian people.

In Syria, unrest began in the early spring of 2011 within the context of Arab Spring protests, with nationwide protests against President Bashar al-Assad’s government, whose forces responded with violent crackdowns. The conflict gradually morphed from prominent protests to an armed rebellion after months of military sieges.

Slowly and surely, through ‘mission creep’ the major global super-powers, already engaged in currency, commodity and economic conflict are being dragged into the quagmire from cold war to hot war. If it is true that Russia is preparing a ground offensive with 150,000 troops, supported by Iranian and Syrian troops, how will the west respond and what will it take for the last rung of the escalation ladder to be reached for all out conflict?

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Syrian Armed Forces Implement Large Scale Offensive in Darayya, Western Ghouta

NOVANEWS

International Military Review – Syria-Iraq Battlespace,

Global Research
Syrian army-Yabroud

The battle for Darayya in the Western Ghouta (collection of farms) of the Rif Dimashq province has recently intensified between the Syrian forces and the Ajnad Al-Sham and Liwaa Al-Shuhada Al-Islam terrorist groups. The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and its allies continue a large-scale offensive inside the city.

On Saturday afternoon, the SAA and the National Defense Forces (NDF) advanced the militants’ defenses inside the Al-Shayah District of Darayya and imposed full control over the Al-‘Arabiya Neighborhood which allows to control the road to Al-Mo’adhimiyah in rural west Damascus. According to the field reports, the SAA also destroyed the main Ajnad Al-Sham HQ building there.

The Syrian forces restarted military operations at the Dara’a Al-Balad Quarter to reclaim the southern part of the provincial capital. Despite the pro-Syrian media statements about successes resulting in capturing several building blocks, the recent clashes have shown that the Syrian forces don’t have a momentum there. The fights are continuing.

Separately, the SAA and the NDF carried out an assault at the eastern slopes of the Al-Hiyal Mountains (Jabal Al-Hiyal). 40 ISIS militants were killed. The SAA seized several ISIS points at the eastern slopes of the Al-Hiyal mountains and killed about 40 militants but it wasn’t enough to free this area. The pro-government forces have been continuing to advance east towards the city of Palmyra in the Homs province.

Three separate bomb attacks killed at least nine people in and around the Iraqi capital, Baghdad. No group or individual has taken responsibility for these attacks. However, the ISIS militants are often considered to be the main suspect in such attacks.

The Iraqi army conducted an operation against the terrorists in the area of Bu Hayat in the restive western province of Anbar on Saturday. The Iraqi forces destroyed a number of bridges constructed by the militants and killed five of them.

Local reports also said that four members of ISIS were killed in an attack on the hideout of the militants in the city of Fallujah in Anbar Province on Saturday.

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No Matter How Well Russian Media Expose Western Lies …

NOVANEWS
Global Research
MediaLiesTV

Western ‘news’ media simply refuse to report the lying that’s done by Western ‘news’ media and their governments.

Western media didn’t even report — and more than a decade after the fact, they still are not reporting — that George W. Bush was lying when he said on 7 September 2002 that the IAEA had just issued a report saying that Saddam Hussein was six months away from having a nuclear weapon — when he said this even though the IAEA repeatedly denied having ever issued such a report. (And: largely because Western media still  don’t report that he had lied  there, the Gallup Poll, on 20 June 2014, found that former President George W. Bush was continuing to be well-regarded by the American public: he still had an approval rating of 53%, and only 44% of Americans disapproved of him.

His approval-rating within his own Republican Party continued to be an astronomically high 88%. His failure to have acted on pre-9/11 intelligence about Al Qaeda, the massive needless bloodshed from foreign invasions, trillions of dollars wasted, millions of needless Iraqi refugees produced, tortures and ‘renditions’ in violation of international law, and the explosion of financial fraud and its resulting economic crash, all failed to cause him to be generally unpopular amongst the American people, whose nation he had actually almost wrecked. Such is the power of a constantly lying press, which claims that all these catastrophes were ‘well-intentioned’ by the ‘democratically’ ‘elected’ President.)

And, more than a decade later, the media are still not reporting that Barack Obama lies saying that the August 2013 sarin gas attack in Syria was from Assad’s forces and not from the rebel side — which it actually was. (Obama repeats this lie every time he ‘justifies’ his invasion of Syria. He’s actually supporting the people who did  that sarin attack — and he knows  it.)

When will Western ‘news’ media start behaving as if they’re actual news-media in an authentic democracy, instead of mere propaganda-outlets for their government against the various nations that the local aristocracy (the Western aristocrats who also own the ‘news’ media) want to take over or else destroy — first, Libya, then Ukraine, now Syria — all allies of Russia (as had been Saddam Hussein’s Iraq), which Russia is the American aristocracy’s actual ultimate target here.

It’s like George Orwell’s 1984, in “the West.” It’s no real democracy here. It’s fake. It’s built on lies. (Just as all U.S. Presidents since the end of the Soviet Union have been lying about Russia.)

And it has been going on like this for decades in the United States. For example, farther on, in that same video (at 3:17) which is linked here at the top of this article, is also the 1990 Congressional testimony of “Nurse Nayirah” about Saddam Hussein’s atrocities in her country Kuwait, which testimony was used in Congress to ‘justify’ Bush Senior’s war against Saddam’s army in Kuwait. That ‘evidence’ too was a U.S. government hoax, engineered with the assistance of Kuwait’s U.S. Embassy and the PR firm Hill and Knowlton. (And a fuller description of that PR campaign can be found here. And also here.)

It wasn’t publicly revealed, that Nayirah was a member of Kuwait’s royal al-Sabah family, she was the daughter of Kuwait’s Ambassador to the United States, Saud Nasser Al-Saud Al-Sabah. The al-Sabah family plus the National Parliament, own Kuwait (they jointly control the country and own its oil wells), and the al-Sabahs had hired Hill and Knowlton for this propaganda-operation. None of that was revealed to the public when “nurse Nayirah” was shown crying on U.S. television as she testified lying in Congress.

What the al-Sabah family were actually crying about was the theft of Kuwait from them, after they had (centuries earlier) largely stolen Kuwait from the Kuwaiti public and privatized it largely to themselves. For this theft from the al-Sabahs and from the National Parliament, the Bush family, long allied with the Saud family (friends of the Sabah family) sent America’s soldiers in to kill, and be killed, in Kuwait.

We know why the Bushes did this. Why is Obama doing it? Who are his  friends?

And, above all: When will the Western ‘news’ media start  reporting about their own fakeness? Isn’t that the pre-condition for any intelligent  consumer of news to start to take them seriously? (Perhaps Western ‘news’ executives don’t think so; perhaps they think that, instead, hiding  their fakery is the only way to keep  their ‘dumb’ audience’s trust.)

Here and here are two Western news-reporters who have gone public about those individual journalists’ personal refusals of demands by management to deceive the public. (Both of them were fired and then blackballed for doing this. Journalists are actually trapped.)

Personal note:

No one pays me to write this sort of thing. I offer my news reports and commentaries free to all American and many other Western news-media, in order to persuade them that they should start to become honest — and also in order to encourage readers to support the few that already are  honest enough to report the truth about what has actually happened to the media in the Western world (google the headline to this report between quotation-marks, and see who published this and who didn’t).

The reason that I do this is that the biggest news-story of all, to me, is actually about the press itself. (Incidentally: America’s self-styled ‘critics’ of the press, such as MediaMatters, FAIR, and AIM, don’t report this particular news-beat either — they too are mere propaganda-vehicles.) And, in fact, the biggest scandal is that there is no market for honesty in the journalism-profession in the West.

The West is all that I know about and have investigated; so, I can’t say whether this corruption is the same elsewhere, and I won’t speculate about that. My concern is the corruption here, not there. And I have found lots of that corruption, such as: here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here.

Until the Western press starts reporting its own corruptness, democracy will be impossible in the West. Wars and other catastrophes can be the result. Criminal invasions such as of Iraq in 2003, or perhaps even of Russia itself yet to come, can result from a lying press. That’s why I am concerned about this.

* Regarding the RT investigative news report that starts this article, the BBC even had the nerve to headline, after it was telecast, a ‘news’ report supposedly exposing the RT news report as false, while not identifying anything in it to be  false. On 21 September 2015 they headlined, very misleadingly, “UK regulator Ofcom backs BBC in Russian TV case,” and opened (also misleadingly saying what had allegedly been affirmed in what they had ‘won’): “The BBC has won a case against Russian TV channel RT, which claimed the corporation faked a report on Syria. The station [RT] said the BBC had ‘staged’ a chemical weapons attack for a news report, and digitally altered the words spoken by an interviewee.

The BBC complained to Ofcom, saying the ‘incredibly serious’ allegations struck ‘at the heart’ of its obligations to accuracy and impartiality.” (At least that much from the BBC was honest: this RT report really did strike at the heart of the BBC’s trustworthiness.) However, only at the end of this BBC ‘news’ article, after a lot of misdirection and side-tracking in the BBC’s article, was the actual decision from Ofcom quoted from, or even summarized, when it finally said:

“It [Ofcom] ruled: ‘We did not consider that viewers would have clearly understood that the ‘massive public investigation’… was a complaint by a member of the public to the BBC which had been responded to in detail by the BBC and that it was also based on a number of online articles detailing individuals’ opinions.’ RT has been directed to broadcast a summary of Ofcom’s decision that its programme was misleading.”

Nothing was identified in this BBC ‘news’ article as having been ‘misleading’ in the RT news report. And, specifically, RT’s allegation that the BBC had staged and “faked a report on Syria” wasn’t actually denied in the BBC’s article (though the opening of the BBC ‘news’ article misleadingly suggested that the charge that the BBC had engaged in fakery there had been found by Ofcom to be a false allegation by RT as the BBC was alleging — which wasn’t at all true). However, in order for RT to retain its license in UK, they had to comply with the British regulatory agency’s command. And Britain doesn’t have a censored ‘news’ media? The UK is a ‘democracy’? The Home Team (BBC) can use the home-nation’s media-regulator to punish a foreign competitor that has exposed the Home Team’s lies, and this is supposed to be ‘democracy’?

Here is what Ofcom’s actual report on this case actually said:

“Ofcom has not taken forward [i.e., accepted] the BBC’s complaint of due accuracy under Rule 5.1 as this rule applies to news reports and is therefore not applicable to the Programme which was an investigative current affairs programme. However, Ofcom considered that the [RT] Programme raised issues warranting investigation under Rule 2.2 of the Code which states: ‘Factual programmes or items or portrayals of factual matters must not materially mislead the audience.’”

In other words: Whereas the BBC’s ‘news’ story here had opened by alleging that, “The BBC has won a case against Russian TV channel RT, which claimed the [BBC] corporation faked a report on Syria,” that statement by BBC was false. Ofcom’s report had clearly stated that, “accuracy … is … not applicable to the program.” Furthermore: elsewhere in Ofcom’s report, there was also this:

“Ofcom’s functions do not extend to regulating the provision of the BBC’s services in so far as they concern the accuracy or impartiality of the content of any programme included in the BBC’s UK public broadcasting services.”

In other words: As regards the BBC itself, accuracy isn’t required, not only in “an investigative current affairs program” but in anything at all  which comes from the BBC. Wow! Why would Ofcom — supposedly the BBC’s (and all news-media’s) regulator, say such things? The reason is obvious once one reads the rest of Ofcom’s report. The BBC in its complaint to Ofcom, which had sparked this ruling by Ofcom, provided no documentation disproving or in any way contesting the truth of what the RT news-report had reported. For this reason, Ofcom instead applied a different, totally vague and therefore pliable standard, namely that “factual matters must not materially mislead the audience.” Even if the given “investigative current affairs programme” is 100% “accurate,” it must not “materially mislead” (unless it’s the BBC, which is free to falsify. The BBC is allowed to be entirely inaccurate anywhere, but RT isn’t allowed even to merely “materially mislead” — whatever that’s supposed to mean).

So: what was the basis for Ofcom’s ruling that this RT program did “materially mislead”? Ofcom presented details of where the progam was “misleading.” Most of them consisted of arguments to the effect that the private person who had investigated the BBC’s report, Robert Stuart, and who was quoted at several points in the RT report, had produced no ‘massive public investigation,’ though it was, in fact, massive and had, in fact, been made public on the Web, at

https://bbcpanoramasavingsyriaschildren.wordpress.com/.

The Ofcom report said that:

“The BBC said that the ‘extremely disturbing findings’ of the ‘massive public investigation’ referred to and relied on in the [RT] Programme were in fact the complaints of Mr Stuart and that the statement of Mr Stuart which is read out in the Programme is portrayed as the ‘outcome of an official public investigation’. The BBC said that these assertions are false and ‘un-evidenced’.”

Ofcom there stated the BBC’s accusation, using BBC’s original complaint from BBC.

However, in fact, Mr. Stuart’s investigative report was “massive,” and it was “public” in the sense of its being online; and, as far as “official”  is concerned, that three-word phrase “official public investigation” employed by the BBC in their complaint against RT, used by BBC in their charge filed at Ofcom against RT, describing RT’s references to RT’s investigation, that it was an ‘official public investigation,’ was a fabrication by the BBC: Not once in the RT news-report was that three-word phrase actually used. Never was Mr. Stuart’s report being referenced there as an “official public investigation,” nor was it referred to there as any “outcome of an official public investigation.” (You can easily confirm this fact by examining the transcript of the segment — you’ll need to click there on “Read the full transcript.”) The BBC lied there to Ofcom, and Ofcom simply took their lie on that as being the Gospel Truth.

Ofcom concluded its finding:

“For the reasons stated above, Ofcom was of the view that the Programme, in stating that the BBC was the subject of a ‘massive public investigation which made some extremely disturbing findings’ presented the audience with a materially misleading fact, and therefore, within the context of the Programme which was a current affairs programme, had the potential to cause harm to viewers.”

As if the BBC’s faked chemical-weapons attack by Assad’s forces hadn’t caused real harm to the BBC’s viewers — and to democracy itself? That’s right; that’s Ofcom.

Therefore, (p. 124)

“Ofcom found that the Programme as broadcast resulted in unfairness to the BBC. [Oh? It’s not ‘harm to viewers’ that Ofcom was actually concerned about here, after all?] Therefore, Ofcom has upheld the BBC’s complaint of unjust or unfair treatment in the Programme as broadcast.”

Clearly, by Ofcom’s phrase there, “unjust or unfair treatment,” they were referring to the BBC as being their client — not the BBC’s viewers, at all.

Therefore, RT, afraid that their license will be revoked if any further compaints against them by the BBC are filed at Ofcom, did whatever they were told.

According to Britain’s pro-imperialist New Statesman  magazine, RT is “Putin’s Mouthpiece” and is thus a threat. So: this is how Britain deals with that alleged situation — by imitating the Soviet Union.

A nation doesn’t need to be communist in order to be a dictatorship. Just ask Julian Assange, involuntarily imprisoned for years in the Ecuadorean Embassy in London because he runs an operation (wikileaks) that exposes dictatorships that call themselves ‘democratic’ though they aren’t. Perhaps the most-successful dictatorships are the ones that (like the U.S.) deny that this is what they are.

It’s a lot easier to lead the herd to slaughter if they don’t know what is happening behind the wall at the front of the line.

Ofcom’s real message to the British public: Get in line, herd!

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