Archive | July 19th, 2016

Saudi Zio-Wahhabi  airstrikes leave 20 Yemeni civilians dead despite truce


Posted by: Kitty Moses


King Shalom Bin Yahood

At least 20 civilians have been killed as Saudi Zio-Wahhabi warplanes bombed Yemen’s Ta’izz Province in violation of a UN-brokered ceasefire.

Saudi Zio-Wahhabi jets targeted a petrol bomb in Hayfan district of the southwestern province of Ta’izz early on Tuesday, leaving at least 20 civilians dead and 15 others injured, Yemen’s al-Masirah television reported.

Some Yemeni media outlets have put the number of those killed at 35.

The news comes hours after four terrorist bomb attacks hit military and security positions in Mukalla city of Hadhramaut Province, leaving 48 civilians dead and some 30 others injured.

Meanwhile, a Saudi Zio-Wahhabi air strike mistakenly hit a military convoy of pro-Saudi Zio-Wahhabi militants in the strategic mountain of Hailan in Ma’rib Province on Monday night.

Five militants, including a commander, were killed and six others wounded in the air raid.

Zio-Wahhabi attacks come despite UN-mediated talks in Kuwait between representatives of C.I.A puppet Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi and a delegation comprising of the Houthi Ansarullah movement and allies. A ceasefire agreement had been announced before the peace talks.

The Houthi delegation has warned that such blatant cases of truce violation could lead to a full collapse of the peace talks.

Saudi Zio-Wahhabi regime launched its military aggression against Yemen on March 26, 2015, in a bid to bring Hadi, a staunch ally of Riyadh, back to power and defeat the Ansarullah movement. More than 10,000 people have been killed since then.

Kuwait talks

Meanwhile, reports said Monday that Yemen’s warring parties plan to suspend the talks after failing to reach results.

Two negotiators representing Houthis and their allies, and one from the Hadi-delegation said the two sides on Monday were drafting a statement to declare that the negotiations will resume in mid-July following the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Fitr.

“The return to the talks is meant to save face after reaching a deadlock,” said one of the negotiators, who is also one of Hadi’s ministers.

The main bone of contention in the talks is reportedly a demand by the Hadi delegation for the Houthis to start disarming and withdrawing from the areas they have under control.

The Houthis took over state matters when Hadi resigned back in January 2015.

Houthis have rejected the call, saying they will only accept a deal on military and security issues after consensus is reached on the next president and a unity government in Yemen.

Posted in Saudi Arabia, YemenComments Off on Saudi Zio-Wahhabi  airstrikes leave 20 Yemeni civilians dead despite truce

New Report Exposes EU’s Security Links to Refugee-Creating Arms Dealers

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Like peace itself, the military-industrial complex sees internal stability as bad for business. A new report has exposed the activities of military and security companies that are profiting from the ongoing conflicts in the Middle East and North Africa, which have also successfully lobbied the EU to react by buying their security equipment.

The joint report by the European NGO Stop Wapenhandel and the Transnational Institute (TNI), called Border Wars: The Arms Dealers Profiting from Europe’s Refugee Tragedy,” reveals the most prominent winners of security contracts which were issued in Europe as a result of the migrant crisis, and Europe’s acquiescent response to their lobbying.

“Some of the beneficiaries of border security contracts are some of the biggest arms sellers to the Middle-East and North-African region, fuelling the conflicts that are the cause of many of the refugees. In other words, the companies creating the crisis are then profiting from it.”

The big players in Europe’s border security complex include arms companies Airbus, Finmeccanica and Thales, which are also three of the top four European arms traders and have been particularly prominent winners of EU contracts aimed at strengthening borders.

Other companies to benefit from the EU’s policy response to Middle Eastern conflict are French defense and aerospace company Safran, the Spanish IT and defense systems firm Indra Sistemas, and some Israeli companies like BTec Electronic Security Systems, which promote their expertise based on equipment installed at the Israeli-Palestinian border.

French companies Airbus and Thales, and Italian Finmeccanica, are part of the European Organisation for Security (EOS), which has been most active in lobbying the EU for increased border security. The report notes that many of its proposals, such as its push to set up a cross European border security agency, have eventually ended up as policy.

According to the report, the booming border security market was worth an estimated 15 billion euros ($16.5 billion) in 2015, and is predicted to rise to over 29 billion euros ($32 billion) annually in 2022.

New EU member states have been required to strengthen borders as a condition of membership, creating additional markets for profit.

“The arms business, in particular sales to the Middle-East and North-Africa, where most of the refugees are fleeing from, is also booming. Global arms exports to the Middle-East actually increased by 61 per cent between 2006–10 and 2011–15. Between 2005 and 2014, EU member states granted arms exports licenses to the Middle East and North Africa worth over 82 billion euros ($91 billion).”

On Tuesday, the German newspaper Tagesspiegel newspaper revealed that the arms industry could benefit even further from a new direction in the EU’s African policy.

According to the report, the EU Commission intends to direct some funds from its Instrument contributing to Stability and Peace towards equipping African militaries.

The fund was established in March 2014 and has a 2.3 billion euro ($2.5 billion) budget, to be disbursed between 2014 and 2020.

“Development without security and stability is not possible,” a source in the Commission told the newspaper.

“The Commission is therefore considering increasing its support for security actors,” and “in some very special cases,” this will include security forces.

The proposal to spend African development funds on security forces was criticized by the German Green Party MEP Reinhard Butikofer, who described it as “breaking a taboo.”

Die Linke MEP Sabine Losing called the idea “scandalous,” and criticized the “misuse of aid.”

She said the proposal is one of a series of “steps in the militarization of EU foreign policy.”

Posted in EuropeComments Off on New Report Exposes EU’s Security Links to Refugee-Creating Arms Dealers

34 violations against Palestinian journalists in June



Nazi occupation forces and the Palestinian Authority carried out 34 violations against Palestinian journalists in June, Quds Pressreported an NGO saying.

Palestinian Youth Congress for Journalists said in a statement that the Nazi Gestapo violations included direct assaults, firing rubber bullets at journalists and cameramen, arbitrary arrests and the closure of media offices.

The group said the attacks happened while the journalists were documenting Nazi aggression at Al-Aqsa Mosque. Photographer Rami Al-Khatib and journalists Osaid Amarneh and Ahmed Jaradat were wounded during the violence.

Moreover, the statement noted that the Nazi policy of arbitrary detention of Palestinian journalists continued as several journalists, including 25-year-old Nasser Al-Khatib from Ramallah, 27-year-old Iyad Al-Taweel and 43-year-old Bassam Al-Safadi from the Golan Heights were arrested.

There are currently 20 journalists being held in Nazi camp, the statement said.

The group added that Nazi regime had closed Musawat TV which broadcasts from occupied Palestinian territories under the pretext that it incites hatred.

The Youth Congress reported 17 violations against journalists at the hands of the Palestinian Authority.

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Free Trade Agreements Have Exacerbated a Humanitarian Crisis in Central America

By Manuel Perez-Rocha 

U.S. trade negotiators continue to claim that free trade agreements help to support security, but in reality, they exacerbate the root causes of instability in the Mesoamerican region, IPS’s Manuel Perez-Rocha said in a speech at the AFL-CIO conference on U.S. trade policy.

“Real security encompasses economic, human, financial, and political security,” he said.

Today the Northern triangle of Latin America is one of the most dangerous places in the world. In Mexico alone, there are more than 27,000 people reported missing on top of the 100,000 killed in the so-called war on drugs, Perez-Rocha said.

He explained that the origins of this crisis are rooted in structural adjustment policies that the IMF and the World Bank imposed on Central America to pave the way for free trade agreements like the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) and now the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

“Instead of bringing prosperity, [NAFTA] took away domestic protections from Mexico’s food production, leading to greater food insecurity and the widespread loss of our agricultural livelihoods,” he said.

Perez-Rocha said the abandonment of national production of food to favor imports, brought on by NAFTA, has meant the fall of production, employment, and income and the increase of inequality, poverty, and migration. He said this abandonment of the countryside by the government propelled the vacuum that has become occupied by organized crime.

“NAFTA is responsible,” he said. “for the increase of violence and public insecurity in the countryside and in all of Mexico.”

Ten years later, CAFTA was imposed in Central America, ushering in what Perez-Rocha called “the deterioration of economic conditions for working people and major new threats to the environment.”

Perez-Rocha offered one of the most egregious examples in the case of the Pacific Rim mining company which is demanding millions of dollars from El Salvador for protecting its environment.

“This is a deep humanitarian crisis that should be recognized as such,” he said. He quoted U.S. Vice President Biden as saying ‘confronting these challenges requires nothing less than systematic change, which we in the United States have a direct interest in helping to bring about.’

However, the proposal in the Alliance for Prosperity Plan does not address the roots of the crisis, Perez-Rocha said.

“The goal of the alliance, as we see it,” Perez-Rocha said, “is to attract foreign direct investment for the exploitation of natural resources.”

The alliance and agreements like the TPP, on top of the destruction already brought on by NAFTA and CAFTA, will only mean an acceleration of the race to the bottom for the region’s working families, further dislocation and displacement, and regional insecurity, he said.

Posted in USA, Canada, MexicoComments Off on Free Trade Agreements Have Exacerbated a Humanitarian Crisis in Central America

Public Editors and Structural Bias

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By Edward S. Herman 

The  tenure of  Margaret Sullivan as Public Editor of the New York Times (NYT) ended on April 16, 2016, with her column “Public Editor No. 5 Is Yesterday’s News.” This followed four years of  challenging work and the 691 columns and blogs she produced in carrying out her role, which she describes as  “spokesperson for readers.” Sullivan was the fifth and best of the paper’s public editors, but there were serious limits to what she did or could do in that position, and she must have known and accepted them in advance. The Times officials who hired her would have vetted her carefully–she had edited the Buffalo News for over a decade– and known that she would operate within acceptable limits. She is moving on to the position of media columnist at the Washington Post  (WP), And her NYT replacement, Elizabeth Spayd, worked for some years at the WP and comes directly from the editorship of the Columbia Journalism Review. Both the NYT and WP are top level establishment institutions: both supported the invasion of Iraq in 2003; both have been durable supporters of the U.S.-Israel alliance and Israeli policy;  and neither has paid significant attention to the war on, and slow decline of, labor unions in the United States over the last 35 years.

Sullivan claims that the NYT has and should maintain “abiding attention to society’s havenots.” To the war on labor and decline of labor unions, which they have scanted for years? She doesn’t speak about treatment of this society’s external victims and those of our client states, which are so commonly treated in the NYT and elsewhere as “unworthy” victims, but Sullivan does mention the importance of  “values,” “journalistic integrity,” “balance,”  and the “core mission… to find and tell the truth ‘without fear or favor’.” These are fuzzy and leave lots of room for ideological and other forms of bias. She also stresses the danger of pushing news defined by the algorithms and priorities of the increasingly important news operations of social media. This is a good point, but more important is the threat  of accepting as news and specific interpretations of the news alleged facts and interpretations that are pushed by governments and powerful  interest groups in their own perceived interest. Recall once again “the lie that wasn’t shot down” by the NYT in 1983 on the shooting down of  KAL-007, in service to a Cold War propaganda program. There is a very good case that this same kind of lie has been pushed by the NYT as regards the July 17, 2014 shooting down of Malaysian airliner MH-17 over southeastern Ukraine.1

Where powerful political interests are involved and a party line has been established, ”balance” and “truth telling …without  fear or favor” go out the window. The war party, which includes the members of the military-industrial complex and pro-Israel interests, led to the party-line acceptance by the NYT and WP of the Iraqi weapons of mass destruction threat in 2002-2003 and the major aggression that followed. For many years Israel has been able to engage in a steady and theoretically illegal process of ethnic cleansing in Palestine, punctuated by major acts of war and war crimes, with the steady support of the United States and its allies, and hence the NYT and WP.

There was no “balance” in the news or editorial coverage of this process. Language was adapted to support this political bias—most notably, the Israelis “retaliating” to the “terrorism” of the victimized and terrorized unchosen people who regularly upset a mythical “peace process.”  The evidence of  imbalance in the NYT coverage is massive. Take this small pair of illustrations:  First, in the course of a Holocaust Remembrance Day ceremony in Israel on May 5, Major-General Yair Golan, deputy chief of staff of the Israel Defence Forces, gave a speech in which he denounced “revolting trends” that occurred in Nazi Germany  and were now taking place “among us, in 2016.” These remarks caused an uproar in Israel, with Golan both denounced and defended. His statement was made shortly after a judicial exoneration of an Israeli soldier who had shot dead a wounded Palestinian prisoner. The shooting and decision were widely condemned, but also widely praised. In this context, Defense Minister  Moshe Yaalon, who had denounced this assassination and decision, and said of  their supporters that they “don’t back our laws and values,” resigned, with his defense portfolio  given to the extremist rightwinger Avigdor Lieberman.

Former Prime Minister Ehud Barak entered this controversy, stating on a TV interview that “extremists have taken over Israel” and that the country has been “infected by the seeds of fascism.” This was reported by Haaretz on May 20, which, among other things, published a satirical piece by one of their regular contributors, B. Michael, entitled “Why would that general compare Israel to 1930s Germany? Hmm…” (May 16). Michael goes on to list 25 possible reasons that might have passed through “that anti-Semitic general’s head” when he made his comparison: To take just two as illustrative—“(13) The brilliant legal sophistry that prohibits the ‘unchosen’ from purchasing state lands. Only the chosen people may do so.…. (24) A state that insists it is the ‘only democracy’ in the Middle East, whereas it is actually the only ‘military theocracy’ in the entire world.”

The NYT failed to mention the much debated Golan statement, or the followup remarks of Ehud Barak. They also failed to reprint Michael’s piece!

The second illustration is the small Israeli controversy over the Independence Day festival’s soldiers’ performance where the soldiers  formations depicted a peace dove, a Star of David, and then suddenly formed the phrase: “One Nation, One People.” Some observers found this disquieting, too close to the old Nazi formula of “One Nation, One People, One Fuhrer.”  There is a large minority non-Jewish population in Israel, and a majority in the occupied territories that Israel has gradually and de facto absorbed into a greater Israel. In this connection it is notable that Culture Minister Miri Regev, who organized the ceremony, said that ”The phrase ‘one people, one nation’ is an expression of the just aspiration of the Zionist movement since its inception to establish a Jewish state.” This would seem to make the link to Nazi usage more salient. Commentators in Israel, while mainly stressing the great distance of Israel from the Nazi model, are more frequently calling attention to the threat of trends in the same direction, as did Yair Golan and Ehud Barak.2 The NYT chose to play dumb on this story.

It is not just an angry Israeli critic like B. Michael you are not likely to see in the NYT, you will very very rarely see those outstandingHaaretz reporters Gideon Levy and Amira Hass, or U.S. analysts like Noam Chomsky, Richard Falk and Norman Finkelstein. Of these five, there was a single byline by Amira Hass in 2001 and one each for Chomsky and Falk in the years from January 1, 2000 to May 30, 2016 (grand total, 3). On the other hand, strong supporters of the Israeli establishment and Israeli policy Martin Indyk, Dennis Ross and Bernard-Henri Levy had 19, 16 and 9 bylines in the paper during the same period, for a grand total of  44. Balance anyone?

This imbalance and bias is not confined to the opinion pages. Another important Times-related source on Israel and Palestine is the web site TimesWarp, run since late 2012 by retired journalist Barbara Erickson. She has produced a steady stream of critiques of NYT news coverage of Israel/Palestine, her rather short pieces appearing roughly once a week. Her latest at time of writing is “The NY Times Plays the Israeli Army’s Game: Hyping Threats, Shielding Criminals” (May 30, 2016). The first three paragraphs proceed as follows:

The New York Times reports today that Israel faces ‘monumental security challenges’ and is now caught in a debate over just how tough the military should be with those who threaten to harm its soldiers and civilians.

The story, by Isabel Kershner, is framed around ‘months of Palestinian attacks’ that have left some 30 Israelis dead. She makes no mention anywhere of the more than 200 Palestinians killed by security forces over the same time period, nor does she say anything about the brutal conditions of the occupation that provide the impetus for Palestinian assaults.

Kershner briefly notes that Palestinian and human rights groups have accused the Israeli military of ‘excessive force,’ but she fails to say that the charges go beyond this vague reference: In fact, numerous groups have accused Israel of carrying out ‘street executions’ of Palestinians who posed no real threat to soldiers or civilians.

Erickson’s critiques of the NYT news reporting have been detailed and crushing, yet they have not had any observable impact on the paper’s coverage of this area, and Erickson’s name has never been mentioned in print by the public editor. Israel’s ethnic cleansing is protected by the United States and thus by the editors of the Newspaper of Record. This is how a unified and effective power system does its job.

  1. See Robert Parry, “More Game-Playing on MH-17 ?”, May 24, 2016
  2. See Asher Schechter, “’One People, One Nation’: A Visual Representation of the Ignorance That Threatens to Consume Israel,”, May 13, 2915

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Where’s the US Chilcot Report? Blame Obama, Hillary, Biden and Kerry


By John Stauber 

Nothing exposes the fraud of so-called “peace candidate” Barack Obama more than his handling of the illegal government propaganda campaign and eventual war on Iraq. As the UK reads and debates the Chilcot report investigating the Blair government’s role in lying that country into the war, there is no notice in the US that Obama announced before taking office in late 2008 there would be no similar investigation in the US.

It was of course George Bush and his neocons from the Project for the New American Century (PNAC) gang that seized on the September 11, 2001 attacks to manipulate events into an opportunity to wage offensive war on Iraq.  And it was the Democrats in the U.S. Senate, led by Clinton, Kerry, Biden et. al., who provided the votes a year after 9/11 that green-lighted the war.

We can know because of a rather small number of journalists including this writer the extent and depth of the massive propaganda campaign, coordinated with and exploiting a willing corporate news media, that greased the skids for the war.  I co-authored books in 2003 and 2006 summarizing what was known at the time, and in 2008 David Barstow released his mind-blowing and Pulitzer winning investigation of the Pentagon Pundits program that turned the major TV networks, beginning in 2002, into third party advocates for Cheney and Rumsfeld, through puppetry using retired military analysts who were fed and regurgitated the Bush talking points.

But the overwhelming majority of Americans never received this information and are still awash in the continuing propaganda campaign. The last time I looked at a poll most Americans were so duped by the bipartisan and major media propaganda that a majority still believe the non-existant Weapons of Mass Destruction were found.

Obama of course won election to the White House in 2008 by beating Hillary Clinton over the head, and over and over and over, because she voted for war. Obama had the good fortune to still be stuck in state politics in Illinois, not even in the Congress, when Hillary voted for war in 2002. Who knows how he would have voted had he actually been there, but he was never put to that test.

I have written previously about how beginning in 2006 the Democrats progressive front group MoveOn, who had the money and PR to position themselves as the leading antiwar organization, worked with Nancy Pelosi to co-opt the movement into a campaign vehicle for the party, making sure the war was funded all the while Bush was in office, and using it like a gift to attack Republicans in 06 and 08.

In the pathetic giddiness that overtook progressives after Obama’s election, there was little notice given to his announcement that there would be no investigation of how America was led to and lied into war, that page would be turned and we would move forward.  After all, the war was a bipartisan venture, and his soon to be cabinet members Vice President Biden, Secretary of State Clinton, and future Secretary of State Kerry were all pro-war culprits.

In late 2011, Obama pulled a George Bush type PR stunt, and declared the Iraq war had ended, welcoming home the troops. That news story now reads like the front page of The Onion.

So no Chilcot type investigation for America, the source of the war. Thirteen years after the launch of the illegal, first-strike offensive attack that created ISIS and has killed and displaced millions, some are asking why not. Blame Obama the peace poser and his pro-war Democrats. American Exceptionalism strikes again.

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US Missile Defense Test Failed Miserably, and the Pentagon Lied About It

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After spending billions of dollars, the US government is having trouble getting its state-of-the-art homeland missile defense system to function according to plan, and it’s driven the Pentagon to lie about the program’s success rate.

On January 28, the Pentagon’s Missile Defense Agency conducted the first test flight of new so-called divert thrusters, to be used on anti-missile interceptors. A military statement deemed this a “successful test flight,” claiming the thrusters allowed the interceptors to stop a mock warhead.

“On this flight, we validated key design improvements in the divert and attitude control system, demonstrating improved performance, reliability and productibility,” said Michael Bright of Aerojet Rocketdyne, maker of the thrusters, in a statement.

“The overall goal of the Missile Defense Agency is to make a more capable and reliable system, and this successful test demonstrated significant progress toward reaching that goal.”

According to the Los Angeles Times, however, these claims were falsified. During the test, one of the thrusters failed. This caused the interceptor to lose control and the mock missile to slip through the defense shield.

“The mission wasn’t successful,” a project scientist, speaking on condition of anonymity, told the LA Times. “Did the thruster perform as expected? No, it did not provide the control necessary for a lethal impact of an incoming threat.”

A second scientist said that claims of success were “hyperbole, unsupported by any test data.”

Other engineers indicated that the faulty thrusters caused the interceptor to miss its target by “a distance 20 times greater than what was expected,” the LA Times reported.

The program, known as Ground-Based Midcourse Defense (GMD), has cost US taxpayers over $40 billion since 2004. It was designed as a means to prevent a potential nuclear attack, and involves 30 interceptors that can be launched from various terrestrial locations across the United States.

The thrusters have come under scrutiny before. Two unsuccessful tests in 2010 were attributed to the component, and ultimately led to the creation of the latest model. An earlier test of the new thrusters occurred in 2013 and resulted in failure.

According to a report from the US Government Accountability Office, these failures were the result of rushed engineering work and “omitting steps in the design process.”

When asked for comment by the LA Times, the Missile Defense Agency acknowledged that problems had occurred during the “successful” test.

“There was an observation unrelated to the new thruster hardware that has been investigated and successfully root-caused,” the agency said. “Any necessary corrective actions will be taken for the next flight test.”

The agency maintained that “the new thrusters performed as designed” and within “critical performance parameters.”

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What do famous people think about Zionist Jews? ”VIDEO”



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