Archive | January 22nd, 2017

Syrian Opposition to Focus on Ceasefire at Astana Talks – Delegation Member

NOVANEWS

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The Syrian opposition will discuss the consolidation of a ceasefire brokered by Russia and Turkey late last year without delving into political matters at upcoming talks with the Syrian government, opposition delegation member Sayeed Nakrash told Sputnik on Monday.

ASTANA (Sputnik) — The armed opposition is holding final consultations before direct talks with the Syrian government delegation in the Kazakh capital.

“Today we will discuss only the strengthening of the ceasefire and the implementation of the 12, 13 and 14 articles of the UN Resolution 2254. The political aspect of the Syrian crisis will not be discussed today,” Nakrash said, adding that the delegation is ready for direct talks with the government.

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NEO – Truth or Consequences in Astana peace talks

NOVANEWS

What Should One Expect from the Syrian Peace Talks in Astana?
by  Yuri Zinin,  … with New Eastern Outlook,  Moscow

Will the Turkish people have any say in the peace talks, or are they just along for the ride?

[ Editor’s Note: The sands are shifting in the Mideast, but no one has a crystal ball to see how the Syrian mess will shake out when the dust storm passes. We are all optimistic, but not overly so, as bitter enemies will not take defeat gracefully.

Yuri Zinin, one of NEO’s top analysts, keys in below on the “Turkish Pivot” as being the key to any breakthrough, as it would have physical control over some of the key opposition groups via their direct support out of Ankara. This includes weapons, ammo and all the needed supplies to keep them flowing over the Turkish border.

The coming IS defeat in Mosul has Turkey pulling its forces back from Iraq, and the Kurd’s Barzani signaling his retirement, which we did not see coming. Concern seems to have shifted as to where the surviving and very angry IS fighters from Mosul will be transferred to next, with indications already that this will be Deir-Ezzur, with the US’ hand clearly revealed as facilitating. Trump’s credibility on wiping out IS will sink or swim on whether he continues to pretend that the US has not been supporting them.

And let me make one point clear. It is not a deal killer in having to get all the opposition groups to join a political process, as just a good majority of them need to join. Those that refuse will shift themselves over to the bombing list with IS and al-Nusra, and that should include any of the Turkey-backed groups, or it would in itself be breaking its own deal.

This shakeout would allow the Syrian coalition to concentrate on the dual tasks of cleaning out the remaining opposition groups that refuse to join the political process, where Syria could then concentrate more forces into defeating the remaining groups on the battlefield.

Those choosing not to join the political process would be kissing away having any future influence, as those Syrian people under their control, for now, would have to gravitate to one of the other groups for political representation. The key is to get the various opposition groups competing among themselves for political powers.

Frankly, the Islamic State has crushed the Turkish offensive on al-Bab

To be successful at that will require their being instrumental in improving people’s lives, and the name of the game there is ending the fighting and start the rebuilding.

Anyone viewed as an obstructionist will find themselves left at the altar. If their funding is removed, then they will have zero to offer the people and will find themselves one step away from becoming refugees themselves.

Iran is already moving on some rehabilitation deals; the biggest so far is an agreement to help rebuild the cell phone system. This is Balkanization of a different sort. Iran is not lending Syria the money to do this. Iran will own it.

There is nothing really wrong with this, as Iran has lost 1000 of its fighters, totally ignored in the Western press, and also has funded Hezbollah’s participation, without which more Syrian soldiers would be dead and more of the country destroyed.

But with so much hanging on what Turkey does, meaning Erdogan, that makes him the weak link in the chain, as in his being removed. He has suffered a humiliating defeat at al-Bab, the huge Turkish military not being able to capture a medium-sized town from the IS, who basically has no armor or air defense.

This defeat has exposed the Turkish military as a palace guard one. Questions will be asked if Erdogan’s gutting the post-coup military went too far and rendered the country impotent, other than fighting lightly armed Kurdish guerrillas.

Despite his move to concentrate presidential authority, which is moving through the parliament now, that also is a double-edged sword as a rallying point for the non-Gulen opposition. War and Peace are still both in play, and either one may still win the dayJim W. Dean ]

Will Erdogan’s defeat in al-Bab (so far) take the wind out of his sails?

The international meeting on the Syrian settlement in Astana has been attracting the attention of numerous experts across the Middle East.

Most experts agree that the meeting will be a major international and regional step towards the shift of balance of forces on the ground, transforming a bitter military face-off into a political process. The meeting will clarify the positions and the influence enjoyed by the conflicting parties before a new round of negotiations in Geneva starts.

According to the newspaper “Al-Quds Al-Arabi” that is being published in London, the current balance of forces suggests that for the first time since the beginning of the crisis Turkey gravitates towards Russia’s position on the Syrian settlement, that dictates the need to put all the parties of conflict at the negotiating table.

Who is leading who by the nose now? Is the Saudi influence gone in Turkey?

This view is shared by a prominent Arab media figure and political analyst Abdel Bari Atwan. He stresses the fact that the Russian-Turkish alliance, which became the “dominant driving force” of the Syrian settlement. While Moscow supports the Syrian government, Turkey is in position to act on behalf of the armed opposition groups that has the capacity of applying pressure on them.

In these circumstances, there is a pushing of the political opposition. We’re speaking about the so-called Supreme Negotiations Committee (with headquarters in Riyadh) and the National Coalition of Opposition and the Revolutionary Forces (with headquarters in Istanbul).

According to the above mentioned analyst, the Supreme Committee is losing its “monopoly” to represent opposition groups, which it enjoyed at the previous stages of the negotiations in Geneva, since armed groups are turning their backs, both completely or partially, on the their foreign sponsors, including the Persian Gulf monarchies.

This Arab analyst is convinced that we can be talking about a veritable breakthrough. It is possible, he notes, that the conference in Astana will be the turning point in the Syrian conflict where the previous regional balance of powers will change.

Other Arab authors still warn the negotiators that there is a significant number of militant groups who have not accepted the ceasefire and who still control a pretty large chunk of the Syrian territory.

The majority of the representatives of the so-called Syrian political opposition are warily watching the preparations for the Astana meeting. They carry on their claims that Damascus is getting “increasingly dependent” on its partners, while a number of media sources are making all sorts of allegations about “new contradictions between Damascus and its allies,” etc.

According to the Jordanian journalist Muhammad Khatyn, Astana has become a real alternative to Geneva, opening the road for the creation of a Syrian federal state.

The freeing of Aleppo from the foreign backed jihadis is a symbol for the whole country now as to who the real enemy is

A number of regional media sources perceives the importance of the meeting in Astana in a broader context that goes far beyond the scope of the Syrian crisis. Thus, according to the Lebanese TV channel “Al-Mayadin,” the trilateral statement of the Iran-Russia-Turkey in Moscow opens the field for broader political talks between them to expand the vital economic and other ties enjoyed by these states.

The TV station is convinced that Russia and Iran are happy to get Turkey involved in the implementation of the major Eurasian project, as an alternative to the European Union. The fact that former Soviet republics will get involved in this project will make it easier for Ankara to make a choice, since it has a common linguistic, ethnic and historical background with a number of those.

On the other hand, those states have fully developed ties with Iran, while the latter is also interested in deepening them in the light of the new US administration planning to review the bilateral nuclear deal. However, the ongoing crisis in Syria, fueled from outside, prevents the three states from reaching a higher level of economic cooperation.

This is an important factor to consider when assessing the upcoming meeting in Astana and its results, concludes the Al-Mayadin television channel. It’s pretty symbolic that the name Astana is of Turko-Iranian origin.

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Madonna contemplates “blowing up the White House”

NOVANEWS

There is no such thing as “diversity.” Madonna talks about choosing “love” instead of “hate,” but she can never love her enemy because this is not part of her ideology.

Who are you working for, Ms. Material Girl?

One can historically say that the current presidential inauguration has been somewhat unique. It has indeed generated violent reactions in Washington and elsewhere. Madonna has recently come out of the woodwork and declared:I’m angry. Yes, I am outraged. Yes, I have thought an awful lot about blowing up the White House.”

Obviously some psychopaths were listening to Madonna’s potent message. They smashed windows and vandalized cars.[1] It has been reported that at least 217 people have been arrested, and areas of downtown Washington has been damaged. Long before the debacle, Michael Moore was already calling for “disruption” during the inauguration.[2]

Is this how you treat your presumed enemy? Does it really help to go out on the streets and act like wild animals? Nonviolent protest is of course legitimate, but smashing cars and windows?

As we have argued in the past, Trump is indeed inconsistent when it comes to Israel. In fact, Trump hasn’t really fleshed out a consistent foreign policy.

But violent protesters are doing a disservice to all Americans and to their own cause by appealing to vandalism to get things done. They seem to forget that the entire world is watching them.

This also shows that there is no such thing as “diversity.” Madonna talks about choosing “love” instead of “hate,” but she can never love her enemy because this is not part of her ideology.

Then it was Scarlett Johansson’s turn to jump on the political bandwagon. “‘Have you been to the gynecologist yet?’  That was the question my mom asked me at 15 when I informed her about a change that I noticed in my body,” Johansson declared.

“I’m not the type to divulge facts about my personal life, but I feel that in the face of this current political climate, it is vital that we all make it our mission to get really, really personal. So, yes, at 15, I had been to a gynecologist.”

She didn’t stop there:

“I was living in New York City and had visited a Planned Parenthood there. It was actually my clinician at Planned Parenthood who suggested I speak with my pediatrician if I was seeking a referral. She was compassionate and professional and told me she was happy to treat me for regular checkups, and when the time came, for STD and cancer screenings. No judgment. No questions asked. Planned Parenthood provided a safe place where I could be treated with gentle guidance.”

Scarlett Johansson

In other words, she had an abortion. But let us start and think about this for a moment. If Johansson’s mother took the same route, would she be able to make those statements today? That perennial puzzle has never been answered in a logical manner because the ideological foundation of the abortion issue is morally and intellectually bankrupt.

What people like Johannsson don’t usually understand is that Planned Parenthood was created by Margaret Sanger specifically to depopulate the earth, most specifically by eliminating the “imbeciles,” namely, blacks and Catholics.

It must also bes said that abortion is a sanitized version of eugenics, an ideology which started by a sizable number of British intellectuals and which quickly got spread like a virus in America with serious political consequences.[3]

Margaret Sanger made it very clear in her book Pivot of Civilization that “the most urgent problem today is how to limit and discourage the over-fertility of the mentally and physically defective [and that] possibly drastic and Spartan methods may be forced upon American society if it continues complacently to encourage the chance and chaotic breeding that has resulted from our stupid, cruel sentimentalism.”[4] Sanger again declared:

“The mass of Negroes, particularly in the South, still breed carelessly and disastrously, with the result that the increase among Negroes, even more than among whites, is from that portion of the population least intelligent and fit, and least able to rear children properly.”[5]

Where is Black Lives Matter when you really need them? Where are puppets and racketeers like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson?

Sanger was heavily influenced by Social Darwinism. She took that ideology and spread it through Planned Parenthood and her sterilization program. Throughout much of her life, Sanger sought to find a black minister who would understand the sterilization process. She wrote,

“What I wish to see is the employment of an up and doing modern minister, colored, and up and doing modern colored medical man, both to come to New York and train at the Clinic [her clinic] and at the [International Planned Parenthood] Federation until they are oozing with birth control as well as population.”[6]

This black minister would spread her ideology “as to our ideals and the goal that we hope to reach.”[7] Sanger got what she was looking for in 1929 when a black social worker by the name of James H. Hubert, executive secretary of New York’s Urban League, answered Sanger’s call. Historian Cathy Moran Hajo writes,

“Opened in February 1930 with the backing of Harlem’s elite, the branch clinic had its own fifteen-member advisory board of African American doctors, clergymen, nurses, journalists, and social workers who advised and promoted the clinic.

“The clinic was publicized in the African American press, in the pulpits of some of Harlem’s most respected churches, and through medical channels.

“Sanger funded the clinic through grants from the Chicago-based Julius Rosenwald Fund and the donations of other white donors.

“The Harlem Branch treated 1,737 patients in its first year, about half of them African Americans. Sanger continued funding the branch, asking its advisory council to focus on ways of increasing black attendance.”[8]

Central to Sanger’s entire weltanschauung is the elimination of the moral order. She wrote again:

“Slowly but surely we are breaking down the taboos that surround sex; but we are breaking them down out of sheer necessity. The codes that have surrounded sexual behavior in the so-called Christian communities, the teachings of the churches concerning chastity and sexual purity, the prohibitions of the laws, and the hypocritical conventions of society, have all demonstrated their failure as safeguards against the chaos produced and the havoc wrought by the failure to recognize sex as a driving force in human nature—as great as, if indeed not greater than, hunger.”[9]

Since this was the case, then it was ideologically permissible for Sanger to get involved in multiple sexual relationships with a wide-range of people, including Havelock Ellis, Lorenzo Portet, Jonah Goldstein, Hugh de Selincourt, J. Noah Slee, H. G. Wells, Herbert Simonds, Harold Child, Angus MacDonald, Hobson Pitman, etc.

But that is not the end. Biographer Madeline Gray writes that “Margaret was seeking poise and surcease from her recurrent depression through astrology, numerology, sex, religious cults, and friends. No wonder, despite all the talk of her twinkling laughter, most of the pictures of her taken after 1925 reveal her as sad.”[10]

Sanger stated:

“We must teach men the overwhelming power of this radiant force…Through sex, mankind may attain the great spiritual illumination which will transform the world, which will light up the only path to an earthly paradise. So must we necessarily and inevitably conceive of sex-expression?”[11]

Aleister Crowley died too soon. He almost certainly would have been pleased to honor Sanger for her work. About children, Sanger wrote: “The most merciful thing a large family can do to one of its infant members is to kill it.”[12]

Once again, Sanger would not have been able to make such a bold statement if her own mother applied the same formula. Was it good or bad that she didn’t? If the answer is that it was good that her mother decided to nurture her, then didn’t Sanger give other babies a chance to live?

Sanger applied essentially Darwinian principles to get her dirty work done, but the laughable thing is that Darwin’s intellectual children are now complaining that they need more babies for the next generation. One needn’t be an intellectual to see that this is really dumb.


[1] “Anti-Trump Protesters Smash Windows, Vandalize Cars On Streets of Washington,” Sputnik News, January 20, 2017.

[2] “Michael Moore Calls for ‘Disruption’ of Trump’s Inauguration,” Sputnik News, December 9, 216.

[3]  See for example Daniel J. Kevles, In the Name of Eugenics: Genetics and the Uses of Human Heredity (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1998); Mark B. Adams, eds., The Wellborn Science: Eugenics in Germany, France, Brazil and Russia (New York: Oxford University Press, 1990); Gunnar Broberg and Nils Roll-Hansen, eds., Eugenics and the Welfare State: Sterilization Policy in Denmark, Sweden, Norway, and Finland (East Lansing: Michigan State University Press, 1996); Frank Dikotter, Imperfect Conceptions: Medical Knowledge, Birth Defects, and Eugenics in China (New York: Columbia University Press, 1998); Edward J. Larson, Sex, Race, and Science: Eugenics in the Deep South (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1995).

[4] Margaret Sanger, Pivot of Civilization (New York: Humanity Books, 2003), 64.

[5] Angela Franks, Margaret Sanger’s Eugenic Legacy: The Control of Female Fertility (Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Company, 2005),, 266.

[6] Ibid., 44.

[7] Ibid.

[8] Cathy Moran Hajo, Birth Control on Main Street: Organizing Clinics in the United States, 1916-1939 (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2010), 85.

[9] Sanger, Pivot of Civilization, 246, 271.

[10] Grey, Margaret Sanger, 249.

[11] Sanger, Pivot of Civilization, 246, 271.

[12] George Grant, Killer Angel: A Short Biography of Planned Parenthood’s Founder Margaret Sanger (Nashville: Cumberland House Publishing, 2001), 115.

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Nazi forces continue systematic crimes in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt)

NOVANEWS
 (12 – 18 January 2016)

Israeli Forces Demolish Civilian Faculties in Qalendia Refugee Camp.
  • Nazi forces killed 2 Palestinian civilians in the West Bank.

–          7 Palestinian Civilians were wounded, including a child and woman, in the West Bank.

  • Nazi forces continued to target the Gaza Strip border areas, but no casualties were reported.

–         A military checkpoint established by Palestinian armed groups was destroyed and another civilian was wounded.

  • Nazi forces conducted 60 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and 3 limited ones into the Gaza Strip.

–         62 civilians, including 17 children; woman and PLC Member, were arrested in the West Bank.

–         23 of them, including 13 children and the woman, were arrested in illegally occupied Jerusalem.

  • Nazi forces continued their efforts to create Jewish majority in occupied East Jerusalem.

–         A Civilian was forced to self-demolish his house in al-‘Issawiyah village.

–         5 brothers were forced to self-demolish 8 commercial and agricultural facilities and another civilian to remove 4 containers in al-Mukaber Mount.

–         A livestock and poultry barn was demolished in Ras al-Mukaber Mount neighbourhood.

  • Nazi Jewish Settlement activities continued in the West Bank.

–         An agricultural road, dwelling and 4 other facilities were demolished in Kherbet Tana, southeast of Nablus.

–         A 172-dunum land was levelled, and 1200 old olive trees were uprooted in ‘Azoun village, east of Qalqilya, for the interest of establishing a bypass road.

  • Nazi forces continued to target Palestinian Fishermen in the Gaza Sea.

–         Two fishermen were wounded, 5 others were arrested and two boats were confiscated.

  • Nazi forces turned the West Bank into cantons and continued to impose the illegal closure on the Gaza Strip for the 9th year.

–         Dozens of temporary checkpoints were established in the West Bank and others were re-established to obstruct the movement of Palestinian civilians.

–         7 Palestinian civilians, including a child and journalist, were arrested at military checkpoints.

–         Nazi forces arrested 3 Palestinian traders at Beit Haoun “Erez” Crossing in the northern Gaza Strip.

–         Nazi forces detained a number of Gaza prisoners’ families at Erez Crossing and prevented a woman from visiting.

Summary

Nazi violations of international law and international humanitarian law in the oPt continued during the reporting period (12 – 18 January 2017).

 

Shooting:

During the reporting period, Nazi forces killed two Palestinian civilians, including a child, in the West Bank.  Nazi forces also wounded ten other civilians, including a child and woman; 3 of whom were in the Gaza Strip and the rest were in the West Bank.  In the Gaza Strip, Nazi forces continued to chase Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Sea and open fire at farmers in the border areas.

In the West Bank, on 16 January 2017, during clashes between young men and Nazi soldiers at the southern entrance to the village, Nazi forces killed Qosay ‘Amour (17) after directly shooting at him and wounded his brother.  Both live in Taqou’a village, southeast of Bethlehem.

In a new crime of excessive use of armed force, Nazi forces stationed at “Checkpoint 104”, west of Tulkarm, shot dead Nedal Mehdawi (44) from Shweikah Suburb and living in Western Baqah village in occupied Palestine 1948.  Nazi forces claimed that Mehdawi threw stones at the Nazi soldiers and then pulled out a knife trying to stab one of the.  As a result, the Nazi soldiers opened fire at him and he was immediately killed.  Investigations indicate that the Nazi forces could have used less lethal force and arrested him.

On 13 January 2017, 3 Palestinian civilians, including a child, were wounded during their participation in Bal’in village, northwest of Ramallah.  On the same day, 3 other civilians during a protest against the Nazi soldiers who moved into Hezma village, northeast of occupied Jerusalem.

 

The full report is available online at:

http://pchrgaza.org/en/?p=8722

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RSS Agenda: India, Again, Threatens Surgical Strikes

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By Sajjad Shaukat

In the aftermath of the terror attack at a military base in Uri, close to the Line of Control (LoC)

with Pakistan, India has been deliberately increasing war hysteria against Pakistan in accordance with the agenda of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).

The situation developed after the Uri base assault has clearly proved that with the help of Indian

intelligence agencies, particularly RAW, India has itself arranged the attack not only to defame

Pakistan, but also to achieve a number of sinister aims.

After the Uri episode, without any investigation, India’s top civil and military officials, including

their media started propaganda against Pakistan by accusing that the militants who target the Uri base came from Pakistan’s side of Azad Kashmir and the banned Lashkar-e-Taiba controlled by Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) were involved in it. Under the mask of the Uri base

assault, India started mobilization of troops near the LoC to wage a limited war with Pakistan,

while considering surgical strikes on the Azad Kashmir.

New Delhi claimed on September 29, 2016 that it carried out surgical strikes on terrorist launch

pads across the LoC in Pakistani side of Kashmir.

On the other side, in a statement, the Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) rejected Indian

claims by saying, “There has been no surgical strike by India, instead there had been cross border fire initiated by India. Pakistani troops befittingly responded to Indian unprovoked firing across the LoC…the notion of surgical strike linked to alleged terrorists bases is an illusion being

deliberately generated by Indian to create false effects…to create media hype by rebranding

cross border fire as surgical strike is a fabrication of truth.”

Meanwhile, the representatives of The Washington Post and The New York Times, who visited

the villages adjoining LoC in the disputed Kashmir region have reported that the people they met

there told them that there were no surgical strikes.

Reports suggest that myth of Indian surgical strikes was exposed. Hence differences existed

between the civil and military leadership—as to how cover the falsehood. In this regard, Indian

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and country’s former Army Chief Gen. Dalbir Singh Suhaag had

decided to prepare a ‘fake video’ of surgical strikes so as to pacify the Indian public and media.

In this context, Indian Express wrote on October 5, 2016, “Mumbai Congress chief Sanjay

Nirupam on Wednesday attacked BJP even as he continued to face flak from several quarters for

suggesting army’s surgical strikes could be “fake” Unfazed by the heat, even from within his

party, Nirupam fired a fresh salvo accusing BJP of trying to extract political mileage out of the

national security issue with eyes set on ensuing elections in the state to be held next year.”

It is mentionable that since July 8, 2016 against the martyrdom of the young Kashmir leader

Burhan Wani by the Indian security forces in the Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK) in wake of

continued sieges and prolonged curfews, Indian forces have martyred more than 150 innocent

persons who have been protesting against the martyrdom of Burhan Wani.

In wake of new phase of uprising in the Indian Held Kashmir, pressure on the BJP-led Indian

government of Modi has been mounting both domestically and internationally.

But, setting aside the internal and external pressure, days after being named the new Indian

Army Chief, Gen. Bipin Rawat said on January 3, this year that so-called “surgical strikes”

against Pakistan were meant to deliver a message. While threatening Islamabad, Gen. Bipin

Rawat told NDTV in an exclusive interview that the possibility of similar action in the future

could not be ruled out by adding, “If there are terrorist bases across and if they continue to

disrupt the situation on our side of the Line of Control then we have a right to take action against

the terrorists.”

In response, Pakistan’s Army Chief Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa on January 5, 2016 rejected claims

by his Indian counterpart Gen. Bipin Rawat about “so-called surgical strikes” and their possible

recurrence.

According to ISPR, Army Chief Gen. Qamar Bajwa made it clear that “Pakistan Armed Forces

were fully geared to respond to any aggression by India.”

However, like the BJP-led Modi government, Indian new army chief is also following the RSS

agenda which is, the real controller of Indian internal and external policies, based upon anti-

Muslim and anti-Pakistan approach.

Taking cognizance of various developments such as unprecedented rise of Hindu extremism,

persecution of minorities, forced conversions of other religious minorities into Hindus, ban on

beef and cow slaughter, inclusion of Hindu religious books in curriculum and creation of war-

like situation with Pakistan, analysts have still been opining that being the leader of the BJP,

Indian Prime Minister Modi is implementing the fundamentalist agenda of his party with the

support of other Hindu fanatic outfits. But, a Mumbai-based writer, author and lawyer, A. G.

Noorani in his article, “Modi’s loyalties,” published in a Pakistan’s leading daily, on October 10,

2015 proved with authentic events and arguments that Hindu fundamentalist party, RSS is the

real controller of India and BJP is only a show piece.

In the article, A. G. Noorani said, “It was an unprecedented journey; but caused little surprise.

On September 4, Prime Minister Narendra Modi went to Nagpur, the headquarters of the

Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, to present himself before the RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat.

Almost his entire council of ministers and the BJP’s parliamentary board were there to

demonstrate their accountability to the RSS. On Oct 2, a dozen or so junior ministers of state got

into a huddle with senior RSS functionaries in New Delhi in what was described as a regular

review meeting. A press release issued thereafter revealed: The prime minister said he was proud to be a Swayamsevak and he had reached where he had because of the values he had imbibed as

a member of the RSS.”

A. G. Noorani elaborated, “Modi is a lifelong RSS activist (pracharak), having left his family to

dedicate himself to the organisation. It, in turn, ensured his rise to the post of the highest

executive of the country. The entire exercise was a flagrant violation of the fundamentals of the

parliamentary system.”

The writer pointed out, “The BJP general secretary Ram Madhav is an RSS man who was

seconded to the BJP along with many others—recently the RSS model is unique. It has a parivar

[family] of 40-plus organisations. The RSS is their ideological fountainhead. It is also the BJP’s

muscle; it provides the cadres and foot soldiers who are indispensable at election time. Bhagwat

disapproves of the personality cult which Modi and his men have built up ever since he became

prime minister.”

He wrote, “The stark reality is that the BJP can never be a right-wing party in the traditional

sense. Its ideology binds it to the RSS which also controls it organizationally.”

He explained, “The word ‘fascist’ was aptly chosen. As Donald E. Smith says in his classic India

as a Secular State—The leader principle, the stress on militarism, the doctrine of racial-cultural

superiority, ultra-nationalism infused religious idealism, the use of symbols of past greatness, the emphasis on national solidarity, the exclusion of the religious or ethnic minorities from the

nation-concept—all of these features of the RSS are highly reminiscent of fascist movements in

Europe. A responsible correspondent reported in August that the RSS membership is growing at

10,000 to 15,000 recruits every month and says it has reached every district except parts of

Kashmir and Assam. The RSS influence on governance was obvious when Atal Behari Vajpayee

was prime minister. It successfully vetoed Jaswant Singh’s appointment as finance minister. The

RSS shadow lurks ominously on issues dear to it. Ram Madhav specifically mentioned Kashmir

as one of them; which implies also relations with Pakistan.”

Nevertheless, these new revelations prove that all the extremist parties like VHP, Bajrang Dal,

Shiv Sena and other extremist outfits including his own ruling party are subsidiaries of the RSS,

while under the influence of RSS; Prime Minister Modi has been rapidly radicalizing India.

While, the constitution declares India to be a secular state, granting equal rights to the religious

minorities, but in practice, ideology of Hindutva (Hindu nationalism) prevails. Hindu politics and culture dominated by the fundamentalist parties—under the control of RSS have been

propagating Hindutva. Provocative utterances of their extremist leaders have resulted into

unending violence against the Muslims and Christians including other minority groups.

In fact, Modi who was also a volunteer worker of the extremist Hindu terrorist outfit RSS since 8

years of age is a natural born Hindu extremist, while RSS involved in Muslim genocide, rape of

women, demolition of mosques and alive burnings of the innocent persons.

It is noteworthy that especially, on the basis of anti-Muslim and anti-Pakistan slogans, BJP got a

land sliding triumph in the Indian elections 2014, and enabled BJP hardliner, Narendra Modi to

become Indian prime minister who was so far seemed to be implementing his party’s extremist

agenda by giving impetus to Hindu chauvinism—not only against other minorities, but also

against Pakistan, as under his direction, New Delhi has intensified unprovoked firing at the Line

of Control in Kashmir and Working Boundary across Pak-Indian border. Now, these latest

revelations clearly indicate that the Indian Prime Minister Modi follows the instructions of the

RSS which is the main decision-making party and real controller of India.

In this respect, some reliable online sources have disclosed that a secret meeting of RSS took

place under Mohan Bhagwat, Chief of RSS which was also attended by Suresh Bhaiyyaji Joshi,

serving 3 rd  term as General Secretary of RSS, Sureshi Sony (Secretary), Krishna Gopat, Majoj

Biyani and Dr Subhash Bhambre (Minister of State for Defence). Important details reported

about the meeting are—RSS wants BJP to be more aggressive towards Pakistan. Across Line of

Control/Working Boundaries/International Boarder operation has been planned against Pakistan in the near future, most likely before UP election to favorably impact the outcome of elections.

These reports also revealed that RSS wants BJP to build Ayodhya Temple after forming

government in UP. Prime Minister Modi has made important appointments recently including

COAS, RAW and IB Chiefs. BJP/RSS now have their “own men” to lead these organizations.

Modi with ambitious newly appointed Chief’s and DGMO may resort to some limited action

against Pakistan which can be used for political gains through inflated projection. Possibility of a

“False Flag” act of violence followed by a limited cross LOC/WB/IB action by Special Forces or

infantry will be high until the elections are over.

Indian new army chief has been portrayed as an expert of “Surgical Strikes” to domestic

audience, as Corps had conducted “cross border strikes” against Naga rebels in Myanmar.

Para-drop practices have been conducted recently in Kishtwar in Indian Occupied Kashmir

(IOK)—Samba, Jammu and Bhatinda. Practice of “Surgical Strikes” was conducted by D Force

RRF in Batote (IOK). Possible objective of these exercises could be—make videos/ photographs

which can be used to add credibility to a future fake activity.

New Delhi can use any pretext to obtain its sinister designs against Islamabad. In this

connection, Kashmiri freedom fighters attacked on General Res Engineers Force (GREF) Camp

in Batal (Akhnoor) on January 9, 2017. In this connection, Indian media reported that 3 x GREF

employees were killed in an attack by terrorists on January 9, 2017 at GREF camp, located 2 km

from LOC in Batal village. Indian media also stated that the attackers came from across the

LOC. The exact number of attackers is still not confirmed contrary to that, actual facts are GREF

is a subordinate organization of border Roads Organization (BRO).

The Indian authorities have been quick to link them to Pakistan. Indian media is not giving it due coverage, as has been done in previous incidents. Because, Indian Army might be making the groups for launching another surgical strikes—Indian designs to use such fake incidents to

malign Pakistan and to use them as a justification for any surgical strikes may be exposed.

Nonetheless, the Modi government and its new army chief who are acting upon RSS agenda by

considering surgical strikes in Azad Kashmir or limited war in Kashmir in wake of intermittent

firing across the LoC by targeting the villages of Azad Kashmir are badly mistaken, if they

overestimate India’s power and underestimates Pakistan’s power. Pakistan’s Armed Forces are

fully prepared to give a matching response to any such an attack by Indian forces. So, our forces

are ready to conduct a real strike on an opportune moment.

Posted in IndiaComments Off on RSS Agenda: India, Again, Threatens Surgical Strikes

Audio Evidence: Kerry privately confirms supporting and arming Daesh

NOVANEWS

On 30 September 2016, The New York Times published extracts of an audio recording of a conversation between the Secretary of State, John Kerry and members of the Syrian “opposition” [1]. The conversation took place on 22 September 2016, at the sidelines of the UN General Assembly. We hear him berating the US Congress for refusing to send men to bring down the Syrian Arab Republic and advising the opposition to find another military power to take over from the US and to bring it to power.

The extracts chosen by the New York Times lead us to understand that the State Department could no longer support the National Coalition of Opposition and asked it to look to other sponsors.

The complete recording (36 minutes) was published on 1 January by The Last Refuge [2]. It completely alters the sense of the conversation and accordingly is evidence that the extracts which the New York Times initially sought to publish do not actually seek to inculpate the Obama Administration but to protect it.

In the complete recording, we hear the Secretary of State
- confirm that the strategic aim of the war that the Obama Administration led since 2011 against the Arab Syrian Republic is to topple the regime.
- confirm that the Obama administration was hoping that [a subrogation would take place] and Daesh would be able to step into its place it take down the Syrian Arab Republic.
- confirm that the Obama administration provided Daesh with arms to topple the Syrian Arab Republic.

This recording dispels the myth of a so-called Syrian revolution and equally the myth that the West is fighting Daesh. It gives us a more meaningful understanding of the tensions within the Obama administration and why General Michael Flynn resigned. Under international law, supporting Daesh is a crime against Humanity.

Posted in USA, SyriaComments Off on Audio Evidence: Kerry privately confirms supporting and arming Daesh

Could Turkey swing over to the Russian camp?

NOVANEWS

Even though, historically, Russia has a weighty past with Turkey, and even though it has not forgotten the personal rôle played by current President Erdoğan, to its detriment, during the the first Chechen war, it can not fail to be interested by the possibility of Ankara leaving NATO. On the other hand, the deep US state, which continues to pursue its imperial ambitions despite the election of Donald Trump, is ready to do whatever it takes to keep Turkey in the Atlantic Alliance.

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What John Kerry does in daylight, Victoria Nuland undoes at night.

In order to guarantee his personal survival, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has launched a vast purge of all the pro-US elements in his country — a purge which he must add to the combats in which he is already engaged against Syria, against the PKK, and now also against his ex-mercenaries from Daesh.

The destruction of US influence began with the eradication of Fethullah Gülen’s Hizmet — Gülen is the Islamist preacher who works for the CIA from Pennsylvania. It continues today with the dismissal and often the arrest not only of all the military personnel linked to the United States, but also all secular military personnel in general. You can’t be too careful.

450 of the 600 Turkish senior officers in service at NATO have been called back to Turkey. More than 100 of them, and their families, have requested political asylum in Belgium, headquarters of the Atlantic Alliance.

The first consequence of this anti-secular purge is that the Turkish army will be headless for a long time. In the space of five months, 44% of the generals have been fired, and this, despite the fact that during the Ergenekon scandal, 70% of the senior officers at the time were dismissed, arrested and imprisoned. Deprived of its command structure, operation «Euphrates Shield» is at a standstill.

Erdoğan is therefore obliged to revise his military ambitions downwards for the next few years — in Syria, Iraq and Cyprus — three states he partially occupies. He has therefore let go of East Aleppo (Syria) — but not Idleb — and is preparing to withdraw from Bachiqa (Iraq).

Seen from Washington, a possible exit by Turkey from NATO, or at least from the Integrated Military Command of the Atlantic Alliance, has the imperialist faction of Power in a cold sweat. In terms of numbers, the Turkish army is in fact the second NATO power after the United States. However, a possible exit from the Alliance may be something of a relief for the Donald Trump faction, for whom Turkey is a rudderless country.

This is the source of the neo-conservative «forcing» aimed at bringing Turkey back into the «course of History» (meaning that of the «New American Century»). Thus, the assistant Secretary of State, Victoria Nuland, is attempting to offer Cyprus to Recep Tayyip Erdoğan — a project she conceived after the elections of November 2015, when President Barack Obama ordered the elimination of the Turkish President.

By blackmailing Cypriot President Níkos Anastasiádis, Mrs. Nuland pressured him to accept her «peace plan» for Cyprus — the island would be reunified and demilitarised (in other words, deprived of its army) — while NATO (in real terms, Turkish troops) — would be deployed. In this way, the Turkish army could complete its conquest of the island without having to fight. In case he should refuse this fool’s bargain, President Anastasiádis could be tried in New York for his implication as a lawyer in the business dealings for Imperium, the company belonging to his Russian friend Leonid Lebedev – a two billion dollar affair.

Thus, the split with NATO would cost Turkey the North-East part of Cyprus, which it currently occupies, while remaining in the Atlantic Alliance would offer it the whole of the island.

Of course, in a few weeks Victoria Nuland should be replaced by the new Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, but the group she represents will probably not lose all its power. Mrs.Nuland is a member of the founding family of the Project for a New American Century, which played a part in the planning of the events of 11 September 2001. Her father-in-law, Donald Kagan of the Hudson Institute, trained the neo-conservatives and the disciples of Leo Strauss in the military history of Sparta. Her brother-in-law, Frederick Kagan, from the American Entreprise Institute, looked after public relations for Generals David Petraeus and John R. Allen. Her sister-in-law, Kimberly Kagan, created the Institute for the Study of War. Her husband, Robert Kagan, is today salaried by the ex-Emir of Qatar at the Brookings Institution. Four personalities, five think-tanks, but a single ideology.

As for Victoria, she was successively ambassador to NATO, spokeswoman for Hillary Clinton, and organiser of the coup d’etat in Kiev in February2014. She helped Presidents Petro Porochenko and Erdoğan with the official creation of the «Islamic International Brigade», which organised vast sabotage operations in Russia. Her actions will probably be continued by the US deep state against the Trump administration.

It is the group behind the Kagans which is pursuing the war in Syria, with no other motive than remaining in power. Not only was President Barack Obama incapable of expelling them from his administration, but a personality like Victoria Nuland, who was considered to be a figurehead of the Bush administration, had no difficulty in rising through the ranks of the Democratic administration and organising a wave of Russophobia. While she worked in close collboration with Hillary Clinton, she never stopped sabotaging the diplomacy of Secretary of State John Kerry, aided and abetted by her friend Jeffrey Feltman, the real commander of UNO.

Knowing Erdoğan’s capacity for sudden changes of strategy, Moscow will either have to soothe the anxieties of Anastasiádis, or propose something more attractive to Ankara in order to keep it midstream betweeen the United States and Russia.

Posted in TurkeyComments Off on Could Turkey swing over to the Russian camp?

The confession of the criminal John Kerry

NOVANEWS

The war against Syria is the first to have been waged, for more than six years, in the digital era. A wealth of documents which should have remained secret for many years have already been published. Although they have been released in different countries, so that international public opinion is unaware of them, they already enable us to piece together the events concerned. The release of a recording of comments made in private by John Kerry last September reveals the policies of the Secretary of State and obliges all observers — including ourselves — to review our previous analyses.

The broadcast by The Last Refuge of the complete recording of the meeting between Secretary of State John Kerry and the members of the National Coalition (22 September 2016, at the Dutch delegation to the United Nations) calls into question what we thought we knew about the US position on Syria.

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First of all, we believed that while Washington had launched the operation known as the «Arab Spring» in order to overthrow the secular Arab régimes for the benefit of the Muslim Brotherhood, it had left its allies to assume the second war against Syria on their own, as from July 2012. Since these states pursued their own objectives — recolonisation for France and the United Kingdom, theft of gas reserves for Qatar, expansion of Wahhabism and revenge for the Lebanese civil war for Saudi Arabia, annexation of the North of the country for Turkey on the Cypriot model, etc. — the original objective had been abandoned. However, John Kerry states in this recording that Washington has never stopped seeking to overthrow the Syrian Arab Republic, which implies that it supervised the work of its allies at every stage. It follows that, over the last four years, the jihadists have been commanded, armed and coordinated by NATO Allied LandCom (ground forces command) based in Izmir (Turkey).

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Second, John Kerry confirms here that Washington could go no further because of international Law and the position of Russia. Let’s be clear about this – the United States have never ceased exceeding their rights. They have destroyed most of Syria’s oil and gas infrastructures, on the pretence of fighting the jihadists (which is allowed under international Law), but without having been invited by President el-Assad (which violates intenational Law). However, they did not dare to deploy their troops on the ground and openly fight the Republic, as they did in Korea, Vietnam and Iraq. For that job, they chose to put their allies in the front line — leadership from behind — and to support mercenary forces without discretion, as they did in Nicaragua, at the risk of being sanctioned by the International Court of Justice (UN internal tribunal). Washington does not want to engage in a war against Russia, which, although it had not opposed the destruction of Yugoslavia and Libya, stood up and drew a new line which must not be crossed. Moscow has the capacity to defend the Law by force if Washington were to openly engages in a new war of conquest.

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Third, John Kerry confirms here that Washington hoped for the victory of Daesh over the Republic. Until now — on the basis of the report by General Michael Flynn on 12 August 2012 and the article by Robin Wright in the New York Times on 28 Septembre 2013 — we had understood that the Pentagon intended to create a «Sunnistan» straddling Syria and Iraq, in order to cut the «Silk Road». However, he admits that the plan went much further than that. Probably, Daesh was to take Damascus, and then be chased out by Tel-Aviv (in other words, they would be pushed back to the «Sunnistan» which had been allotted to them). Syria would then be shared between Israel in the South, Daesh in the East, and Turkey in the North.

This point enables us to understand why Washington gave the impression of no longer being able to control events, of giving its allies «free rein» — indeed, it engaged France and the United Kingdom in the war by leading them to believe that they would be able to recolonise the Levant, while in fact it had planned to divide Syria without them.

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Fourth, by admitting that Washington «supported» Daesh, John Kerry recognises that it armed them, which destroys the rhetoric of the «war on terror».
- Since the attack against the al-Askari mosque in Samarra, on 22 February 2006, we knew that Daesh (originally known as the «Islamic Emirate of Iraq») had been created by the national director of US Intelligence, John Negroponte, and Colonel James Steele — on the model they had used in Honduras — in order to put an end to the Iraqi Resistance and to spark a civil war.
- We knew, since the publication by the PKK daily, Özgür Gündem, of the minutes of the planning meeting held in Amman on 1 June 2014, that the United States had organised the joint offensive of Daesh on Mosul and the Kurdistan Regional Government on Kirkuk.
- We now know with certainty that Washington has never stopped supporting Daesh.

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Fifth, we had interpreted the conflict between the Allen/Clinton/Feltman/Petraeus clan on one hand, and the Obama/Kerry administration on the other, as being concerned with the question of whether or not to support Daesh. This interpretation was wrong. Both sides had no qualms about organising and supporting the most fanatical of jihadists. Their disagreement concerned only the recourse to open warfare — and the risk of potential conflict with Russia — or the choice of secret action. Only Flynn — Donald Trump’s current security advisor — is opposed to jihadism.

If, in a few years, the United States should collapse as the USSR did, this recording of John Kerry could be used against him, and against Barack Obama, before an international court — but not before the International Criminal Court, which today is discredited. Having recognised the extracts of this conversation which have been published by the New York Times, he would no longer be able to contest the authenticity of the whole dossier. The support that Kerry offers to Daesh violates several UN resolutions and constitutes proof of his responsibility and that of Obama in the crimes against humanity committed by the terrorist organisation.

Posted in USA, SyriaComments Off on The confession of the criminal John Kerry

Chomsky on the Long History of US Meddling in Foreign Elections

NOVANEWS

By C.J. Polychroniou, Truthout 

Supporters watched as unfavorable returns came in during Hillary Clinton’s election night rally at the Javits Center in New York, on November 9, 2016. Many of Clinton's closest aides believe that Russian hacking and information leaks had a profound impact on the election, while conceding that other factors were also important. (Photo: Todd Heisler / The New York Times)

Supporters watch as unfavorable returns come in during Hillary Clinton’s election night rally at the Javits Center in New York, on November 9, 2016. As Americans grapple with reports of the impact of Russian hacking on US elections, it’s important to also acknowledge our own long history of meddling in other countries’ elections. (Photo: Todd Heisler / The New York Times)

A wide range of politicians and media outlets have described the alleged Russian interference in the last US presidential election (by way of hacking) as representing a direct threat to American democracy and even to national security itself. Of course, the irony behind these concerns about the interference of foreign nations in the domestic political affairs of the United States is that the US has blatantly interfered in the elections of many other nations, with methods that include not only financial support to preferred parties and the circulation of propaganda but also assassinations and overthrows of even democratically elected regimes. Indeed, the US has a long criminal history of meddling into the political affairs of other nations — a history that spans at least a century and, since the end of World War II, extends into all regions of the globe, including western parliamentary polities. This interview with Noam Chomsky reminds us that the United States is no stranger to election interference; in fact, it is an expert in this arena.

  1. J. Polychroniou: Noam, the US intelligence agencies have accused Russia of interference in the US presidential election in order to boost Trump’s chances, and some leading Democrats have actually gone on record saying that the Kremlin’s canny operatives changed the election outcome. What’s your reaction to all this talk in Washington and among media pundits about Russian cyber and propaganda efforts to influence the outcome of the presidential election in Donald Trump’s favor?

Noam Chomsky: Much of the world must be astonished — if they are not collapsing in laughter — while watching the performances in high places and in media concerning Russian efforts to influence an American election, a familiar US government specialty as far back as we choose to trace the practice. There is, however, merit in the claim that this case is different in character: By US standards, the Russian efforts are so meager as to barely elicit notice.

Let’s talk about the long history of US meddling in foreign political affairs, which has always been morally and politically justified as the spread of American style-democracy throughout the world.

The history of US foreign policy, especially after World War II, is pretty much defined by the subversion and overthrow of foreign regimes, including parliamentary regimes, and the resort to violence to destroy popular organizations that might offer the majority of the population an opportunity to enter the political arena.

Following the Second World War, the United States was committed to restoring the traditional conservative order. To achieve this aim, it was necessary to destroy the anti-fascist resistance, often in favor of Nazi and fascist collaborators, to weaken unions and other popular organizations, and to block the threat of radical democracy and social reform, which were live options under the conditions of the time. These policies were pursued worldwide: in Asia, including South Korea, the Philippines, Thailand, Indochina and crucially, Japan; in Europe, including Greece, Italy, France and crucially, Germany; in Latin America, including what the CIA took to be the most severe threats at the time, “radical nationalism” in Guatemala and Bolivia.

Sometimes the task required considerable brutality. In South Korea, about 100,000 people were killed in the late 1940s by security forces installed and directed by the United States. This was before the Korean war, which Jon Halliday and Bruce Cumings describe as “in essence” a phase — marked by massive outside intervention — in “a civil war fought between two domestic forces: a revolutionary nationalist movement, which had its roots in tough anti-colonial struggle, and a conservative movement tied to the status quo, especially to an unequal land system,” restored to power under the US occupation. In Greece in the same years, hundreds of thousands were killed, tortured, imprisoned or expelled in the course of a counterinsurgency operation, organized and directed by the United States, which restored traditional elites to power, including Nazi collaborators, and suppressed the peasant- and worker-based communist-led forces that had fought the Nazis. In the industrial societies, the same essential goals were realized, but by less violent means.

Yet it is true that there have been cases where the US was directly involved in organizing coups even in advanced industrial democracies, such as in Australia and Italy in the mid-1970s. Correct?

Yes, there is evidence of CIA involvement in a virtual coup that overturned the Whitlam Labor government in Australia in 1975, when it was feared that Whitlam might interfere with Washington’s military and intelligence bases in Australia. Large-scale CIA interference in Italian politics has been public knowledge since the congressional Pike Report was leaked in 1976, citing a figure of over $65 million to approved political parties and affiliates from 1948 through the early 1970s. In 1976, the Aldo Moro government fell in Italy after revelations that the CIA had spent $6 million to support anti-communist candidates. At the time, the European communist parties were moving towards independence of action with pluralistic and democratic tendencies (Eurocommunism), a development that in fact pleased neither Washington nor Moscow. For such reasons, both superpowers opposed the legalization of the Communist Party of Spain and the rising influence of the Communist Party in Italy, and both preferred center-right governments in France. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger described the “major problem” in the Western alliance as “the domestic evolution in many European countries,” which might make Western communist parties more attractive to the public, nurturing moves towards independence and threatening the NATO alliance.”

US interventions in the political affairs of other nations have always been morally and politically justified as part of the faith in the doctrine of spreading American-style democracy, but the actual reason was of course the spread of capitalism and the dominance of business rule. Was faith in the spread of democracy ever tenable?

No belief concerning US foreign policy is more deeply entrenched than the one regarding the spread of American-style democracy. The thesis is commonly not even expressed, merely presupposed as the basis for reasonable discourse on the US role in the world.

The faith in this doctrine may seem surprising. Nevertheless, there is a sense in which the conventional doctrine is tenable. If by “American-style democracy,” we mean a political system with regular elections but no serious challenge to business rule, then US policymakers doubtless yearn to see it established throughout the world. The doctrine is therefore not undermined by the fact that it is consistently violated under a different interpretation of the concept of democracy: as a system in which citizens may play some meaningful part in the management of public affairs.

So, what lessons can be drawn from all this about the concept of democracy as understood by US policy planners in their effort to create a new world order?

One problem that arose as areas were liberated from fascism [after World War II] was that traditional elites had been discredited, while prestige and influence had been gained by the resistance movement, based largely on groups responsive to the working class and poor, and often committed to some version of radical democracy. The basic quandary was articulated by Churchill’s trusted adviser, South African Prime Minister Jan Christiaan Smuts, in 1943, with regard to southern Europe: “With politics let loose among those peoples,” he said, “we might have a wave of disorder and wholesale Communism.” Here the term “disorder” is understood as threat to the interests of the privileged, and “Communism,” in accordance with usual convention, refers to failure to interpret “democracy” as elite dominance, whatever the other commitments of the “Communists” may be. With politics let loose, we face a “crisis of democracy,” as privileged sectors have always understood.

In brief, at that moment in history, the United States faced the classic dilemma of Third World intervention in large parts of the industrial world as well. The US position was “politically weak” though militarily and economically strong. Tactical choices are determined by an assessment of strengths and weaknesses. The preference has, quite naturally, been for the arena of force and for measures of economic warfare and strangulation, where the US has ruled supreme.

Wasn’t the Marshall Plan a tool for consolidating capitalism and spreading business rule throughout Europe after World War II?

Very much so. For example, the extension of Marshall Plan aid in countries like France and Italy was strictly contingent on exclusion of communists — including major elements of the anti-fascist resistance and labor — from the government; “democracy,” in the usual sense. US aid was critically important in early years for suffering people in Europe and was therefore a powerful lever of control, a matter of much significance for US business interests and longer term planning. The fear in Washington was that the communist left would emerge victorious in Italy and France without massive financial assistance.

On the eve of the announcement of the Marshall Plan, Ambassador to France Jefferson Caffery warned Secretary of State Marshall of grim consequences if the communists won the elections in France: “Soviet penetration of Western Europe, Africa, the Mediterranean, and the Middle East would be greatly facilitated” (May 12, 1947). The dominoes were ready to fall. During May, the US pressured political leaders in France and Italy to form coalition governments excluding the communists. It was made clear and explicit that aid was contingent on preventing an open political competition, in which left and labor might dominate. Through 1948, Secretary of State Marshall and others publicly emphasized that if communists were voted into power, US aid would be terminated; no small threat, given the state of Europe at the time.

In France, the postwar destitution was exploited to undermine the French labor movement, along with direct violence. Desperately needed food supplies were withheld to coerce obedience, and gangsters were organized to provide goon squads and strike breakers, a matter that is described with some pride in semi-official US labor histories, which praise the AFL [American Federation of Labor] for its achievements in helping to save Europe by splitting and weakening the labor movement (thus frustrating alleged Soviet designs) and safeguarding the flow of arms to Indochina for the French war of re-conquest, another prime goal of the US labor bureaucracy. The CIA reconstituted the mafia for these purposes, in one of its early operations. The quid pro quo was restoration of the heroin trade. The US government connection to the drug boom continued for many decades.

US policies toward Italy basically picked up where they had been broken off by World War II. The United States had supported Mussolini’s Fascism from the 1922 takeover through the 1930s. Mussolini’s wartime alliance with Hitler terminated these friendly relations, but they were reconstituted as US forces liberated southern Italy in 1943, establishing the rule of Field Marshall [Pietro] Badoglio and the royal family that had collaborated with the Fascist government. As Allied forces drove towards the north, they dispersed the anti-fascist resistance along with local governing bodies it had formed in its attempt to establish a new democratic state in the zones it had liberated from Germany. Eventually, a center-right government was established with neo-fascist participation and the left soon excluded.

Here too, the plan was for the working classes and the poor to bear the burden of reconstruction, with lowered wages and extensive firing. Aid was contingent on removing communists and left socialists from office, because they defended workers’ interests and thus posed a barrier to the intended style of recovery, in the view of the State Department. The Communist Party was collaborationist; its position “fundamentally meant the subordination of all reforms to the liberation of Italy and effectively discouraged any attempt in northern areas to introduce irreversible political changes as well as changes in the ownership of the industrial companies … disavowing and discouraging those workers’ groups that wanted to expropriate some factories,” as Gianfranco Pasquino put it. But the Party did try to defend jobs, wages and living standards for the poor and thus “constituted a political and psychological barrier to a potential European recovery program,” historian John Harper comments, reviewing the insistence of Kennan and others that communists be excluded from government though agreeing that it would be “desirable” to include representatives of what Harper calls “the democratic working class.” The recovery, it was understood, was to be at the expense of the working class and the poor.

Because of its responsiveness to the needs of these social sectors, the Communist Party was labelled “extremist” and “undemocratic” by US propaganda, which also skillfully manipulated the alleged Soviet threat. Under US pressure, the Christian Democrats abandoned wartime promises about workplace democracy and the police, sometimes under the control of ex-fascists, were encouraged to suppress labor activities. The Vatican announced that anyone who voted for the communists in the 1948 election would be denied sacraments, and backed the conservative Christian Democrats under the slogan: “O con Cristo o contro Cristo” (“Either with Christ or against Christ”). A year later, Pope Pius excommunicated all Italian communists.

A combination of violence, manipulation of aid and other threats, and a huge propaganda campaign sufficed to determine the outcome of the critical 1948 election, essentially bought by US intervention and pressures.

The CIA operations to control the Italian elections, authorized by the National Security Council in December 1947, were the first major clandestine operation of the newly formed agency. CIA operations to subvert Italian democracy continued into the 1970s at a substantial scale.

In Italy, as well as elsewhere, US labor leaders, primarily from the AFL, played an active role in splitting and weakening the labor movement, and inducing workers to accept austerity measures while employers reaped rich profits. In France, the AFL had broken dock strikes by importing Italian scab labor paid by US businesses. The State Department called on the Federation’s leadership to exercise their talents in union-busting in Italy as well, and they were happy to oblige. The business sector, formerly discredited by its association with Italian fascism, undertook a vigorous class war with renewed confidence. The end result was the subordination of the working class and the poor to the traditional rulers.

Later commentators tend to see the US subversion of democracy in France and Italy as a defense of democracy. In a highly-regarded study of the CIA and American democracy, Rhodri Jeffreys-Jones describes “the CIA’s Italian venture,” along with its similar efforts in France, as “a democracy-propping operation,” though he concedes that “the selection of Italy for special attention … was by no means a matter of democratic principle alone;” our passion for democracy was reinforced by the strategic importance of the country. But it was a commitment to “democratic principle” that inspired the US government to impose the social and political regimes of its choice, using the enormous power at its command and exploiting the privation and distress of the victims of the war, who must be taught not to raise their heads if we are to have true democracy.

A more nuanced position is taken by James Miller in his monograph on US policies towards Italy. Summarizing the record, he concludes that “in retrospect, American involvement in the stabilization of Italy was a significant, if troubling, achievement. American power assured Italians the right to choose their future form of government and also was employed to ensure that they chose democracy. In defense of that democracy against real but probably overestimated foreign and domestic threats, the United States used undemocratic tactics that tended to undermine the legitimacy of the Italian state.”

The “foreign threats,” as he had already discussed, were hardly real; the Soviet Union watched from a distance as the US subverted the 1948 election and restored the traditional conservative order, keeping to its wartime agreement with Churchill that left Italy in the Western zone. The “domestic threat” was the threat of democracy.

The idea that US intervention provided Italians with freedom of choice while ensuring that they chose “democracy” (in our special sense of the term) is reminiscent of the attitude of the extreme doves towards Latin America: that its people should choose freely and independently — as long as doing so did not impact US interests adversely.

The democratic ideal, at home and abroad, is simple and straightforward: You are free to do what you want, as long as it is what we want you to do.

Note: Some of the material for this interview was adapted from excerpts from Deterring Democracy (Verso).

Posted in USAComments Off on Chomsky on the Long History of US Meddling in Foreign Elections

China Voices Readiness to Lead World in Free Trade After US’ Pullout From TPP

NOVANEWS

China is prepared to become the top global proponent of free trade and lead the fight against protectionism, Chinese International Economic Affairs Department head Zhang Jun said Monday.

BEIJING (Sputnik) — During his presidential campaign, Trump promised to scrap the TPP during his first day in office, a pledge which has apparently been followed up. Trump has also often criticized and pledged to repeal the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) unless the agreement was renegotiated in a way that would prove more favorable to the United States. The new administration is also expected to at least delay talks on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP).

“China is not seeking such leadership. But speaking of the situation today, it must be stressed that it was not China which surged ahead, but it was the West, which used to support openness, multilateralism and globalism, that took a step backward, leaving the space open for China… In such conditions, China will have to accept such responsibility if it must play the leading role in the fight against protectionism,” Zhang said during a briefing on Chinese leader Xi Jinping’s recent speech in Davos.

Last Tuesday, Xi’s opening speech at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos took a swipe at encroaching protectionism and staunchly advocated globalization and free trade. The Chinese leader stated that no country would benefit from trade wars in an apparent dig at new US President Donald Trump, who is scrapping the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), has threatened to impose higher import barriers and has accused China of manipulating its currency.In the briefing, Zhang rejected that the speech was a reaction to Trump’s statements, but acknowledged that it was relevant to the US president’s protectionist policies.

“I think that Xi Jinping did not want to start a public debated with Donald Trump by opposing protectionism, but wanted to peacefully discuss ways to jointly resolve problems in the global economy,” the diplomat said.

Posted in ChinaComments Off on China Voices Readiness to Lead World in Free Trade After US’ Pullout From TPP

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