Archive | March 9th, 2017

The Unknown Truth About Korea: U.S. Sanctioned Death Squads and War Crimes, 1945-1953

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 Image result for north Korea leader photo

The mostly unknown record of the brutal U.S. occupation and subsequent control of Korea following the Japanese defeat in August 1945, and the voluminous number of war crimes committed between 1950 and 1953, have been systematically hidden under mountains of accusations directed almost solely against the “red menace” of northern Korea. The Korean War itself grew out of U.S. refusal to allow a genuine self-determination process to take root. The Korean people were exuberant in August 1945 with their new freedom after being subjected to a brutal 40-year Japanese occupation of their historically undivided Peninsula. They immediately began creating local democratic peoples’ committees the day after Japan announced on August 14 its intentions to surrender. By August 28, all Korean provinces had created local peoples’ offices and on September 6 delegates from throughout the Peninsula gathered in Seoul, at which time they created the Korean People’s Republic (KPR).

The United States had a different plan for Korea. At the February 1945 Yalta conference, President Roosevelt suggested to Stalin, without consulting the Koreans, that Korea should be placed under joint trusteeship following the war before being granted her independence. On August 11, two days after the second atomic bomb was dropped assuring Japan’s imminent surrender, and three days after Russian forces entered Manchuria and Korea to oust the Japanese as was agreed to avoid further U.S. casualties, Truman hurriedly ordered his War Department to choose a dividing line for Korea. Two young colonels, Dean Rusk (later to be Secretary of State under President’s Kennedy and Johnson during the Vietnam War) and Charles H. Bonesteel, were given 30 minutes to resolve the matter. The 38th parallel was quickly, and quietly, chosen, placing the historic capital city of Seoul and 70 percent, or 21 of Korea’s 30 million people in the “American” southern zone. This was not discussed with Stalin or any other political leaders in the U.S. or among our allies. Surprisingly, Stalin agreed to this “temporary” partition that meant the Russians already present in the country would briefly occupy the territory north of the line comprising 55 percent of the peninsular land area. On August 15, the United States Army Military Government in Korea (USAMGIK) was formed and on September 8, 72,000 U.S. troops began arriving to enforce the formal occupation of the south.

The Korean People’s Republic officially formed just two days prior to the first arrival of U.S. forces was almost immediately shunned by the U.S. who decided its preference was to stand behind conservative politicians representing the traditional land-owning elite. The U.S. helped in the formation on September 16 of the conservative Korean Democratic Party (KDP), and brought Syngman Rhee to Korea on General MacArthur’s plane on October 16 to head up the new party. Rhee, a Korean possessing a Ph.D. from Princeton (1910) and an Austrian wife, had lived in the United States for more than 40 years. To his credit he had detested the Japanese occupation of his native country, but he hated the communists even more. Just before Rhee arrived to begin efforts to consolidate his power in the south, long-time resistance fighter Kim Il Sung returned from exile to begin his leadership in the  north. As a guerrilla leader Kim had been fighting the Japanese occupation of China and Korea since the early 1930s.

Rhee and his U.S. advisers quickly concluded that in order to build their kind of Korea through the KDP they must definitively defeat the broad-based KPR. While Kim, with the support of the Russian forces in the north, was purging that territory of former Japanese administrators and their Korean collaborators, the USAMG was actively recruiting them in the south. In November the U.S. Military Governor outlawed all strikes and in December declared the KPR and all its activities illegal. In effect the U.S. had declared war on the popular movement of Korea south of the 38th Parallel and set in motion a repressive campaign that later became excessively brutal, dismantling the Peoples’ Committees and their supporters throughout the south.

In December 1945 General John R. Hodge, commander of the U.S. occupation forces, created the Korean Constabulary, led exclusively by officers who had served the Japanese. Along with the revived Japanese colonial police force, the Korean National Police (KNP), comprised of many former Korean collaborators, and powerful right-wing paramilitary groups like the Korean National Youth and the Northwest Youth League, the U.S.Military Government and their puppet Syngman Rhee possessed the armed instruments of a police state more than able to assure a political system that was determined to protect the old landlord class made up of rigid reactionaries and enthusiastic capitalists.

By the fall of 1946, disgruntled workers declared a strike that spread throughout South Korea. By December the combination of the KNP, the Constabulary, and the right-wing paramilitary units, supplemented by U.S. firepower and intelligence, had contained the insurrections in all provinces. More than 1,000 Koreans were killed with more than 30,000 jailed. Regional and local leaders of the popular movement were either dead, in jail, or driven underground.

With total U.S. support Rhee busily prepared for a politically division of Korea involuntarily imposed on the vast majority of the Korean people. Following suppression of the October-December insurrection, the Koreans began to form guerrilla units in early 1947. There were sporadic activities for a year or so. However, in March 1948, on Korea’s large Island, Cheju, a demonstration objecting to Rhee’s planned separate elections scheduled for May 1948 was fired upon by the KNP. A number of Koreans were injured and several were tortured, then killed. This incident provoked a dramatic escalation of armed resistance to the U.S./Rhee regime. The police state went into full force, regularly guided by U.S. military advisors, and often supported by U.S. military firepower and occasional ground troops.

On the Island of Cheju alone, within a year as many as 60,000 of its 300,000 residents had been murdered, while another 40,000 fled by sea to nearby Japan. Over 230 of the Island’s 400 villages had been totally scorched with 40,000 homes burned to the ground. As many as 100,000 people were herded into government compounds. The remainder, it has been reported, became collaborators in order to survive. On the mainland guerrilla activities escalated in most of the provinces. The Rhee/U.S. forces conducted a ruthless campaign of cleansing the south of all dissidents, usually identifying them as “communists,” though in fact most popular leaders in the south were socialists unaffiliated with outside “communist” organizations. Anyone who was openly or quietly opposed to the Rhee regime was considered suspect. Therefore massive numbers of villagers and farmers were systematically rounded up, tortured, then shot and dropped into mass graves. Estimates of murdered civilians range anywhere from 200,000 to 800,000 by the time the hot war broke out in June 1950.

The hot war allegedly began at Ongjin about 3 or 4 A.M. (Korean time) June 25, 1950. Just how the fighting started on that day depends on one’s source of information. It is mostly irrelevant, since a civil and revolutionary war had been raging for a couple of years, with military incursions routinely moving back and forth across the 38th parallel.

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Poland’s Weird March Against Its Own Self

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Adelina Marini

Poland opened a new front of confrontation with the EU, but it seems that it will lose. This week the leaders of the member states are about to elect the former Polish prime minister Donald Tusk (EPP) to his second term at the head of the European Council, but the government of the ultra-conservative Law and Justice party refused to support him and came up with another applicant. Jaroslaw Kaczynski’s party has long had a problem with Donald Tusk, whom it accuses of betrayal because of the investigation of the crash in Smolensk, which killed the then president and brother of Jaroslaw Kaczynski – Lech Kaczynski. Since Law and Justice came to power in Poland in late 2015 it became clear that Mr Tusk could not count on support from Warsaw for his re-election.

Tusk was elected without much speculation in 2014 for several reasons. First of all, it was time that one of the new member states  assumed a key European post. At that time, Poland seemed the best candidate because its recent prime minister Donald Tusk managed within two mandates to transform Poland into an unavoidable force in the EU. Furthermore, the new Cold War with Russia had already begun after the occupation of Ukraine and Poland, together with the Baltic states, managed to show that the topic is extremely important for European security. Last but not least, the party of Donald Tusk – Civic Platform – is part of the family of the European People’s Party (EPP), which won the European elections in 2014.

It was the first time a little more transparency and democracy were brought  to the election of heads of institutions with the election of Jean-Claude Juncker (Luxembourg, EPP) as president of the EC, but for other posts the principle of horse-trading among member states on a geopolitical and party principle remained. The president of the European Council’s mandate is of two and a half years to allow for maximum satisfaction of the  ever increasing number of interests in the ever growing Union. Currently, however, the mood is not to open new battlefields but maintain stability. With all his shortcomings, Donald Tusk proved to be a good president of the European Council and therefore has the support of most of the member states for a new term.

In practise, there was no other application presented until Saturday when Polish Foreign Minister Witold Waszczykowski nominated EPP MEP Jacek Saryusz-Wolski. The decision is rather strange considering that Poland’s ruling Law and Justice party is a member of the third largest political force in the EU – European Conservatives and Reformists, dominated by the British Conservatives. There are several problems with the nomination of otherwise popular Polish MEP. The first is that nothing less than a former prime minister is sought for that position. Jacek Saryusz-Wolski has in his biography only the position of a MEP, to which he was elected through Donald Tusk’s party – Civic Platform. In the European Parliament he had risen to the position of a vice-president, the position he also occupied in the EPP. He is one of the notable members of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the EP.

The second problem is that the EPP has already announced that its candidate is Donald Tusk. Therefore Civic Platform officially informed the EPP that Jacek Saryusz-Wolski was expelled from the party. On this basis, the EPP also released the MEP from his positions, and meanwhile he himself left the centre-right European political family.

Poland has another problem – it should not think that the office is reserved for it, the more so that Warsaw has fallen out of grace because of the procedure for the protection of the rule of law that is ongoing against it. The European Commission initiated the procedure early last year because of the attempts of Beata Szydło’s government and the ruling majority to undermine the rule of law, separation of powers, and legal order in general by hasty legislative changes aimed at curtailing the powers of the Constitutional Court and the media. The procedure is now entering its final phase when the European Commission should propose to the Council to impose sanctions. This will probably not pass because of the support of Hungary, but it is clear that the Polish government is pushing the country further into isolation within the EU.

All this is developing at a time when two very important events must happen in the EU. One is to begin negotiations with Great Britain over its exit from the EU and hence Prime Minister Theresa May would find it advantageous if the head of the European Council was a friendly figure, given the fact that Law and Justice is part of the family British Conservatives in the EU. The other big event is that discussions begin on the future of the EU after European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker presented a White Paper with proposals for the future. Electing a eurosceptic head of the European Council would be a bad be called an eurosceptic. He is rather a eurorealist, which makes him very suitable for the post at this moment in history.

message. Donald Tusk is not known as a great europhile, but can hardly

The re-election of Donald Tusk does not need unanimity, which means that his victory is almost certain. Regardless of how events will unfold by the end of the week, when Tusk will possibly be confirmed, it is clear that this is not the end of the conflict between Warsaw and Brussels. And the fact that it involves the EPP as well means that the moment has finally come for European political parties to take responsibility for their members and their activities at national and European level. Jacek Saryusz-Wolski’s expulsion could be the bird to bring spring into European political parties, which have long held smoldering tension due to a mismatch in the system of values, views, and the direction of the entire European project.

Translated by Stanimir Stoev

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Syrian War Report: ISIS Defenses Collapsing in Aleppo Province

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Aleppo

The Syrian army’s Tiger Forces, backed by Russian warplanes, reached the Euphrates River in the province of Aleppo, liberating a large chunk of the area from ISIS.

The town of Khafsah and the nearby Water Treatment Station were the most important gains.

The liberation of the Khafsah Water Treatment Station will allow the Assad government to restore water supplies to the city of Aleppo which had been disrupted when ISIS terrorists [supported covertly by US-NATO] damaged the station.

The ISIS-held Jihar Military Airbase will likely become the next target in the province. While the airbase has a strategic value itself, controlling this site government forces will de-facto encircle the ISIS stronghold of Deir Hafer. This will allow to successfully retake this town from the terrorist group soon.

Russian and US military servicemen closely cooperate in the outskirts of the city of Manbij controlled by the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), the Times reported.

According to spokesman for the Pentagon, Jeff Davis, the both forces know about the location of each other in the area but have no desire to enter into a conflict with someone other than ISIS terrorists.

Syrian troops and some Russian military servicemen entered a number of villages west of Manbij, but the official list of these villages remains unclear. Photos show servicemen of the Russian Military Police near Manbij are also available online.

The Syrian army units took control over the al-Amiriyah mountain and the nearby hills located 5km north of the Palmyra Airbase in the province of Homs.

Ahrar Al-Sham and Tahrir Al-Sham reached a ceasefire deal which is aimed to end the infighting between rival terrorist factions in Idlib and Aleppo provinces.

The sides have to remove the recently created checkpoints and to release fighters captured in clashes. The groups are also creating a joint body to coordinate military actions against government forces.

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Anti-Imperialism, Pan-Africanism and Nkrumah’s Ghana. The Historic Role of Shirley Graham Du Bois

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Ghana Independence 60th Anniversary. A Towering Political Figure impacting the Radical Phase of the First Republic.

 
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With March 6 representing six decades of statehood for the West African nation of Ghana provides an excellent opportunity for a political, economic and historical assessment of post-colonial developments on the continent.

In 1957 there were very few liberated areas in Africa. Egypt had been considered independent for many years although prior to 1952, Cairo was largely a neo-colony of Britain as a result of its control over the Suez Canal. President Gamal Abdel Nasser, a co-leader in the Free Officers Movement which seized power on July 23, 1952, after consolidating power some two years later in 1954, nationalized the Canal in 1956.

In response Britain, France and the State of Israel invaded the North African state with the intent to remove the Nasser government. The United States under the-then President Dwight D. Eisenhower viewed the British-led intervention as an effort to reassert London’s imperialist project which had been severely curtailed as a result of World War II, threatened to withdraw Washington’s underpinning of their national economy if the intervention was not halted.

The action taken by Nasser represented the emerging assertiveness of African and other oppressed nations during the 1950s. It was in 1954 that the Algerian National Liberation Front (FLN) launched its armed struggle against French colonialism which had dominated the country since 1830. It has been estimated that one million Algerians died during the liberation war however the movement prevailed over the conventional military superiority of Paris.

Sudan gained its independence from Britain in early 1956. The people had engaged in anti-colonial revolts since the latter years of the 19th century.

During the European colonial period the nations of Ethiopia and Liberia were considered independent.  Nonetheless, with these states being surrounded and under the economic dominance by the imperialist countries they could in no genuine sense be considered sovereign nations. Ethiopia was invaded by Italy in 1896 and 1935 by Italy. Libyans fought a three decades-long war against Rome in the early years of the 20th century before being subsumed by imperialism.

The African Diaspora and the Anti-imperialist Struggle

Dr. W.E.B. Du Bois (February 23, 1868-August 28, 1963) was described by Dr. Kwame Nkrumah as the “Father of Pan-Africanism” due to his involvement in African affairs dating back to the late 19th century. In 1896, Dr. Du Bois completed his doctoral dissertation at Harvard University on the Suppression of the African Slave Trade, 1638-1870.

By 1900, Du Bois had traveled to London to participate in what is considered to be the First Pan-African Conference organized by Trinidadian Barrister Henry Sylvester Williams. Du Bois recalled that he was secretary of the Conference and drafted its resolutions.

Later he would convene a series of similar meetings known as the Pan-African Congresses from 1919 to 1923. By 1927, when the Fourth Pan-African Congress was held in New York City, it was being structured, organized and funded by the women’s organization the Circle for Peace and Foreign Relations headed by Addie W. Hunton, a prominent African American who had intervened in support of Black soldiers during their deployment in France for the U.S. at the conclusion of World War I.

Hunton and her predecessor Anna J. Cooper were instrumental in the rise of independent African organizational culture emanating from the late 19th, early 20th centuries. Both Cooper and Hunton were internationalists in their outlooks and had definite views on the essential role of women in social transformation and political development.

Lola Shirley Graham was born on November 11, 1896 in Indianapolis, Indiana, the daughter of an African Methodist Episcopal minister. She had initially met W.E.B. Du Bois through her father while she was a child.

Shirley Graham Du Bois with Malcolm X in Ghana, May 1964

Graham Du Bois attended the Sorbonne in France to study music and later enrolled at Oberlin College in Ohio, renowned for its training of African American women dating back to the pre-Civil War period. She obtained both a bachelor’s and master’s degree at Oberlin in music during 1934 and 1935 respectively.

Graham Du Bois became a prolific writer, composing plays, musicals and publishing biographies. She would spend decades in the theatre while maintaining an interest in political movements as well. She became an organizer for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), where her future husband was a co-founder, serving as the editor of the Crisis Magazine from 1910-1934.

Her politics moved more to the Left resulting in her joining the Communist Party of the U.S. during the 1940s and serving on a high level within its structures and concomitant mass groups and coalitions that were either controlled or influenced by the Marxist-Leninist Party. With the passing of W.E.B. Du Bois’ first wife Nina Gomer in 1950, Graham Du Bois became closer to the retired professor and prodigious author.

Her burgeoning personal relationship with Du Bois moved him further into left-wing circles becoming a consistent ally on the periphery of the CP. Du Bois was a leading member of the Council on African Affairs (CAA) which was founded in the late 1930s by perhaps the leading artist in the U.S., Paul Leroy Robeson, a graduate of Princeton and Columbia University Law School who became an actor, singer and social scientist.

By 1945, Du Bois would travel to Manchester, England to serve as Chairman of the Fifth Pan-African Congress. Other leading people within the conference were George Padmore, an African-Trinidadian who was the former leader of the Red International Labor Union (Profintern) and a member of the Communist Party in the U.S., who later broke with Moscow in 1934 after the rise of Germany as a fascist state. In addition to Padmore, Francis Kwame Nkrumah, was the organizing secretary for the Manchester gathering.

Nkrumah from the Nzima people of western Gold Coast had studied for ten years in the U.S. (1935-1945) at Lincoln University and the University of Pennsylvania. During his tenure in America in addition to obtaining undergraduate and graduate degrees in Philosophy, Economics and Theology, Nkrumah had become a licensed minister providing him with platforms to speak in African American churches and other social organizations.

After being involved in the Left, nationalist and Pan-African movements in the U.S., Nkrumah moved to England in 1945 with the hopes of pursuing a doctorate at the London School of Economics. Instead he became enmeshed in the anti-colonial milieu in Britain. He was embraced by Padmore, by then a well-known journalist who wrote extensively on African affairs.

The resolutions of the Fifth PAC were far more radical than preceding conferences held between 1900 and 1927. A stronger participation of labor and farmer organizations along with youth ensured a more forward looking political direction.

Moreover, the weakening of heretofore dominant European imperialist states such as England, France, Italy, Spain and Germany provided an incentive for colonial territories to adopt an aura of urgency in regard to the attainment of national independence and sovereignty. The U.S. which emerged triumphantly from World War II became the supreme imperialist center of global hegemony backed by international finance capital based in New York.

Although Washington paid lip service to the notions of self-determination for colonial peoples, there was still a protracted struggle to be waged against the rising Socialist camp. The Soviet Union, which bore the brunt of the fighting against Nazi Germany, was able to maintain its existence and expand anti-capitalist influence through the founding of several socialist governments in Eastern Europe.

Asia witnessed revolutions which consolidated after the War in North Korea, North Vietnam and mainland China provided a clear social and economic alternative for the colonized territories. Consequently, by 1947 a Cold War surfaced pitting the world capitalist system against the Socialist countries.

In 1950 full-scale war erupted again in Korea over the direction of the peninsula formally dominated by Japan from 1905 to 1945. The Korean War (1950-53) resulted in the deaths of four million people. The deployment of the 500,000-member Chinese People’s Volunteer Army beat back U.S. imperialism ensuring the survival of the North leading to the formation of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK). Increasing numbers of people and territories were seeking a way out of the capitalist and imperialist system.

The Du Boises, Pan-Africanism and Cold War Repression

The year 1948 became a watershed in the intensifying hostility among the two rival camps as the Left in the U.S. began to advocate for peaceful coexistence between the differing social systems of capitalism and socialism. President Franklin D. Roosevelt in an effort to stave off a total collapse of the capitalist system in the U.S., adopted socialistic reforms such as controls on the banking industry, the creation of social security, welfare, unemployment benefits, and public works projects aimed at infrastructural development and employment creation.

These programs did not emerge from the imagination of Roosevelt. They were demands advanced by the CP and other mass organizations aimed at tackling joblessness, hunger, home foreclosures and evictions as well as the threat of global class warfare. The inability of capitalism to resolve its own internal crises was revealed during the 1930s as the Great Depression did not end until the entrance of the U.S. into World War II in December 1941.

Threats of another imperialist instigated conflagration were all too real by 1948-49. Du Bois’ refusal to go along with the Cold War domestic policies of the administration of President Harry S. Truman which was the adoption of an anti-communist position in exchange for minimal reforms in the areas of Civil Rights. In the aftermath of the War, there was an upsurge in racist violence directed towards African Americans. Therefore, the symmetry of national oppression and hostility against the Socialist camp necessitated a duplicitous stance on the part of the U.S. ruling class.

Du Bois’ rejection of the Truman candidacy of 1948 and his embrace of Henry Wallace and the Progressive Party sped-up his inevitable departure from the NAACP for the second time in a decade-and-a-half. After his attendance at the Paris Peace Conference of 1949 and the advocacy of détente with the Soviet Union and China, Du Bois became a target of the federal government. By 1951 he and four associates were under indictment for failing to register as an agent of a foreign government.

It was during this period that Du Bois married Shirley Graham. They embarked upon a national tour of the U.S. to build support for his acquittal. The case against Du Bois collapsed under the weight of its own folly. Nonetheless, many other prominent Leftists were convicted on similar charges resulting in prison terms, deportations and professional isolation. Ethel and Julius Rosenberg were executed by the American government in 1953 for purportedly sharing nuclear information with the Soviet Union.

Shirley Graham Du Bois and her new husband had their passports confiscated by the U.S. government preventing them from traveling abroad during the years of 1950-1958. After the Supreme Court held that these measures were unconstitutional, the Du Boises went on a world tour of Europe, Asia and Africa.

Graham Du Bois visited Ghana in December 1958 to address the All-African People’s Conference held in Accra. The event attracted the participation of 62 national liberation organizations from around the continent.

The paper delivered by Graham Du Bois on behalf of her husband entitled, “The Future of All-Africa Lies in Socialism”, asserted that:

“Africa, ancient Africa, has been called by the world and has lifted up her hands! Africa has no choice between private capitalism and socialism. The whole world, including capitalist countries, is moving toward socialism, inevitably, inexorably. You can choose between blocs of military alliance, you can choose between groups of political union; you cannot choose between socialism and private capitalism because private capitalism is doomed.”

This address goes on to ask: But what is socialism? It is a disciplined economy and political organization in which the first duty of a citizen is to serve the state; and the state is not a selected aristocracy, or a group of self-seeking oligarchs, who have seized wealth and power. No! The mass of workers with hand and brain are the ones whose collective destiny is the chief object of all effort.

Gradually, every state is coming to this concept of its aim. The great Communist states like the Soviet Union and China have surrendered completely to this idea. The Scandinavian states have yielded partially; Great Britain has yielded in some respects, France in part, and even the United States adopted the New Deal which was largely socialism; though today further American socialism is held at bay by 60 great groups of corporations who control individual capitalists and the trade union leaders.”

Such an appeal to the national liberation movements and independent states would of course draw the negative attention of U.S. and world imperialism. This concern was reflected in the thousands of Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) files which were meticulously kept on both W.E.B. and Shirley Graham Du Bois in this period.

After traveling to the People’s Republic of China in 1959 the Du Boises were accused of being in violation of U.S. policy of entering Socialist states without authorization. Their passports were revoked once again. They then successfully appealed this decision which provided the activist couple with the capacity to visit Ghana in July 1960 to attend the Republic Day ceremonies and the Conference of the Women of Africa and African Descent.

Intelligence agencies were concerned about the travel plans of the couple. A confidential FBI memorandum from the office of John Edgar Hoover, Director, forwarded to the Office of Security Department of State dated June 20, 1960, noted that the Du Boises had been issued passports on June 7. The applications for the passports revealed the couple would leave New York by air on June 20 to visit Ghana to attend the ceremonies surrounding the establishment of the First Republic headed by Dr. Kwame Nkrumah.

This memo also made reference to the awarding of the Lenin Peace Prize to Dr. Du Bois by the Soviet government. Linking the Du Boises to the Communist movement the document reads:

“William Du Bois is Negro author, lecturer and scholar who has [a] long history of affiliation with communist front groups. He was a recipient of a 1958 international Lenin Peace Prize awarded by the Soviet Government. His wife has also had history of association with front groups. Subjects have received official invitation to attend the ceremonies of the inauguration of the new Government of Ghana.  Pertinent reports and memoranda concerning subjects have previously been furnished State and CIA, who are interested both in subject William Du Bois’ receipt of the Lenin Peace Prize and in the foreign travel of both subjects. Information re: passports telephonically furnished to Liaison Section by State Department.”

The Chicago Daily Defender, an African American publication, reported on September 4, 1960 that Graham Du Bois would be a featured speaker at an event planned for November 8 at Carnegie Hall in New York entitled “Rally for Peace and Friendship.” The event was sponsored by the National Council of American-Soviet Friendship (NCASF).

This same report indicated the Du Boises spent July and August in Ghana where in addition to participation in the Republic Day activities, Graham Du Bois served as head of a delegation of African American women who attended the Conference of Women of Africa and African Descent held in Accra. While in Ghana, the Du Boises toured the country visiting various villages, cities and rural communities in an effort assess the social and economic measures being implemented by the people.

Ghana, Socialist Construction and the African Revolution

Ghana gained independence in 1957 and became a Republic in 1960 with Kwame Nkrumah moving from being Prime Minister to President. The Du Boises were invited guests of the state ruled by the CPP and President Nkrumah. They were asked by the government to remain in Ghana and become full citizens. Du Bois was solicited to establish his long-planned Encyclopedia Africana Project aimed at the rewriting of African history from the perspective of the people themselves.

Although they returned to the U.S. in 1960, by the following year the Du Boises had relocated in Ghana. A report in the Ghana Evening News on October 11, 1961 stated the couple had arrived in the country that very morning. In another article published by the Evening News on October 16, reports the Du Boises had been paid a visit by the People’s Republic of China Ambassador to Ghana, Huang Hua and his wife, over the weekend of October 14-15. The article notes the ambassador “had a friendly talk with them.”

The following year on December 17, 1962, the FBI was advised by an undisclosed (redacted) source that high-ranking Communist Party African American official Henry Winston, while visiting Moscow had indicated during a personal conversation which took place in November, that Du Bois and his wife Shirley:

“after five weeks in China during late September and October, 1962, stayed in Moscow for twelve days in November, 1962. In China, the Chinese treated them lavishly and gave them many gifts. William Du Bois received medical attention, which, together with treatment received in Great Britain, he credits for saving his life. This same treatment was refused him by the Soviets due to his advanced age. The overall effect of the China visit on the Du Boises was great to the point that Shirley Du Bois thinks of the Chinese as ‘racial brothers’.”

This FBI document goes on to emphasize that:

“The Soviets are fearful of the Chinese influence on the Du Boises, in that they may lose their support in the ideological dispute with the Chinese. To counter this, the Soviets had Winston return to Moscow from Sofia, Bulgaria, to discuss matters with the Du Boises. The Soviets showered Du Bois with gifts and honors and arranged meetings with Brezhnev, President of the USSR, and with Khrushchev. Although the Soviets were not completely successful with William Du Bois, and much less successful with Shirley Du Bois, they were able to get William Du Bois to issue a public statement supporting the Soviet position in Cuba. Another reason why the Soviets tried to influence William Du Bois is that he is very close to President Nkrumah of Ghana, a leader of the neutralist camp. The Soviets believe that they can determine Nkrumah’s position and policy through Du Bois.”

Through other quotes attributed to either one or both of the Du Boises, whose sources are not cited in the FBI files from the above-mentioned report, says:

“We are the only American Negroes in Ghana who have visited the Peoples Republic of China. I assure you that none of the remarks attributed to these ‘American Negroes’ were ever uttered by either of us. As you know we were very recently in China as well as in the Soviet Union. During this time in both countries we talked with the highest leaders as well as people in all walks of life. But we do not feel equipped to hand out advice to either of these Socialist Giants as to how they should settle their differences.”

The FBI document then goes on to suggest that the Soviets being fearful of Chinese influence in Africa, were preparing Winston for a visit to the continent. Agencies apparently believed or had been informed that Dr. Du Bois had arranged for Winston to travel to Ghana. There was also the hope that Winston would visit other states in Africa as well in April 1963.

While in Ghana, Graham Du Bois continued to write extensively on the freedom movements of African Americans in the U.S. as well as the overall global anti-imperialist struggle.

In the February 1963 edition of The World Review, the journal of the NCASF, on page 17, there was an article by Graham Du Bois entitled “January 8 in Ghana.” This article reviewed the mass struggle of the Ghanaian people against British colonialism which resulted in the release of Nkrumah from prison in February 1951 and the development of a path towards the acquisition of national independence in 1957. January 8, 1950 was the day of “Positive Action” where the CPP called for a national strike demanding independence for the Gold Coast.

Political Affairs, the theoretical journal of the Communist Party in the U.S., published an article by Graham Du Bois entitled “Africa Must Save the Congo”, where the author traces the events inside the mineral-rich Central African state from the period of Prime Minister Patrice Lumumba’s appeal to the United Nations for assistance in the early days of independence in after June 30, 1960. She concludes that imperialism has created a disastrous crisis inside the country and consequently prevented the UN from bringing stability. She reports that African states were working towards a solution to the Congo problem.

Du Bois became the Director of Encyclopedia Africana and served in that capacity until his death inside the country on August 28, 1963. FBI files reveal that Graham Du Bois renounced her U.S. citizenship and became a citizen of the Republic of Ghana in October 1963.

A memorandum from the Department of Justice FBI dated October 10, says: “On October 4, 1963, the United States Embassy at Accra, Ghana, advised the Department of State that subject had renounced her United States Citizenship under Section 349 (A) (6) Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952, on that date. On October 5, 1963, the Embassy advised as follows: Subject intends to apply for United States visa for a Ghanaian passport in order to come to the United States in February, 1964, to attend a memorial rally in honor of her late husband, W.E.B. Du Bois. It was believed that Kwame Nkrumah, Chief of State of Ghana, and the Ghanaian press will be severely critical of the United States Government if subject is denied a visa.”

Subsequently, Graham Du Bois was denied a visa to reenter the U.S. By the concluding months of 1963, the Cold War atmosphere surrounding the direction of the Civil Rights Movement had become even more pronounced. The March on Washington of August 28, 1963 was held on the same day as the passing of Dr. Du Bois. Although NAACP Executive Secretary Roy Wilkins acknowledged the death of the co-founder of the organization, he slandered the legacy of Dr. Du Bois by claiming that he had taken another path in recent years.

The spring and summer months of 1963 were marked by heightened mobilizations on the part of the African American people against legalized segregation and national oppression. Events in Birmingham, Alabama; Danville, Virginia; Cambridge, Maryland; Somerville, Tennessee; Jackson, Mississippi, among many other areas, had aroused the national consciousness in the U.S. and around the world.

Mao-Tse-tung, the Chairman of the Communist Party of China (CPC), issued a statement in response to the unrest in the U.S. marred by the assassination of Medgar Evers, the NAACP Field Secretary in Jackson, Mississippi on June 12. Reviewing the events of 1963, Mao condemned the U.S. for its treatment of the African American people. He began the statement by acknowledging that former NAACP leader in Monroe, North Carolina, Robert F. Williams, then living in exile in Cuba, had urged him on two occasions to make a comprehensive appeal for global support of the African American struggle against the racist U.S. political system.

In concluding this statement issued on August 8, the CPC leader called upon the peoples of the world to express their unconditional solidarity with the African American people:

“I call upon the workers, peasants, revolutionary intellectuals, enlightened elements of the bourgeoisie, and other enlightened personages of all colors in the world, white, black, yellow, brown, etc., to unite to oppose the racial discrimination practiced by U.S. imperialism and to support the American Negroes in their struggle against racial discrimination.

In the final analysis, a national struggle is a question of class struggle. In the United States, it is only the reactionary ruling clique among the whites which is oppressing the Negro people. They can in no way represent the workers, farmers, revolutionary intellectuals, and other enlightened persons who comprise the overwhelming majority of the white people. At present, it is the handful of imperialists, headed by the United States, and their supporters, the reactionaries in different countries, who are carrying out oppression, aggression and intimidation against the overwhelming majority of the nations and peoples of the world. They are the minority, and we are the majority. At most they make up less than ten percent of the 3,000 million people of the world. I am deeply convinced that, with the support of more than ninety per cent of the people of the world, the just struggle of the American Negroes will certainly be victorious. The evil system of colonialism and imperialism grew on along with the enslavement of the Negroes and the trade in Negroes; it will surely come to its end with the thorough emancipation of the black people.”  (Peking Review, No. 33, Aug. 16, 1963)

The lingering Cold War mentality of two African American leaders of the Civil Rights Movement, James Farmer, the Executive Secretary of the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), who at the time was serving a jail sentence in Louisiana, and Roy Wilkins of the NAACP, immediately rejected the statement issued by Chairman Mao. Graham Du Bois in an article entitled “The Great Debate”, admonished Wilkins and Farmer for their anti-Communist responses.

Graham Du Bois accused Farmer of being brainwashed for symbolically biting the hand stretched out to assist him in his Louisiana jail cell. Wilkins’ championed the welcoming of the leadership of the March on Washington by President Kennedy and the legislation submitted to Congress for a Civil Rights bill in the summer of 1963 as proof that African Americans did not need the support of CPC. Conversely, Graham Du Bois noted that the anti-Communist statement by Farmer issued on August 20 could not free him from detention in Louisiana so he could participate in the March on Washington.

The recently-naturalized Ghanaian citizen stressed that people around the world had praised the call by the CPC Chairman to unite in support of the African American struggle. She stressed that never before had such an appeal been made by a large and powerful nation like China.

She went on saying:

“We, in soon-to-be-united Africa, hear this call and the accompanying statement with uplifted hearts. Africans know well that the discrimination practiced in the United States is indeed discrimination against Africa, than not only have the imperialists and racists robbed, plundered and ravaged this fruitful continent, but they have employed every means of degradation, oppression and shame to humiliate Africans and all the children of Africa. The wealth, prosperity and advancement of the United States were built on the annihilation of one people (the American Indian) and the enslavement of another. Beginning with all the back-breaking labor of clearing and developing wilderness and building cities, the Negro’s contribution mounts and expands through every field of endeavor—reaching particular heights in music, literature and science.” (Muhammad Speaks, Nov. 22, 1963, pp. 19-20)

In early 1964, Graham Du Bois was appointed by Nkrumah as Director of Ghana National Television. The project was a massive undertaking which required the solicitation of support from other sympathetic nations. Eventually the Japanese Sanyo Corporation agreed to supply much needed technical assistance.

Not only was she involved in the development of the first national television network in Ghana, Graham Du Bois was functioning on a high level within the CPP government as an administrator within the state publishing house. She worked directly with President Nkrumah and was a part of his inner circle of advisors.

After returning from the Second Summit of the Organization of African Unity (OAU) held in Cairo, Egypt in July 1964, where she consulted with Malcolm X (El Hajj Malik Shabazz) on the efforts of the newly-founded Organization of Afro-American Unity (OAAU) to build support for the struggle inside the U.S. among heads-of-state, the UN and national liberation movements, she would announce the convening of a course on television screenwriting in Accra. The aim was to train a cadre of writers for Ghana National Television which was due to be launched in a few months.

She had signed up Donald Ogden Stewart, the American Communist expatriate living in London, to serve as Director of Television Writing. Stewart was a screenwriter, widely known for his sophisticated comedies and melodramas, such as The Philadelphia Story (based on the play by Philip Barry), Tarnished Lady and Love Affair.

In a letter to her New York-based attorney, Bernard Jaffe, she reported that she had received nearly 150 letters of application for the class. The course began with 76 people in attendance. By October 17, 1964, after ten weeks, there was regular participation of fifty to sixty people every week. She pointed out the uneven development of the students which were lectured by her in basic writing and techniques for television broadcasting.

A subsequent letter to Jaffe from Graham Du Bois dated February 21, 1965, discusses the mounting pressure by the imperialist states on the CPP government. She conveys to her lawyer how:

“It would be silly to emphasize that Africa is going through a crucial period when the entire world seems to be hurtling through space bent on its own destruction. Until a few months ago Ghana seemed like a safe haven busily intent on attending to its own pressing business, organizing and developing at breakneck speed, working hard and running forward. We never attempted to isolate ourselves—but we do steer our own ship and hold high a pilot light for the rest of Africa. So what happens? Attempts at assassination fail. Attempts at stirring up internal dissension fail! We keep moving forward. So now the World Marketers close in! They are trying to strangle our economy, cut off our trade, freeze certain foreign exchange, while, at the same time, choke us with foreign goods. Nkrumah answers by refusing to release precious cocoa, imposing rigid import restrictions and telling us we must DO WITHOUT until new adjustments can be made with socialist countries! It will work. Nobody is going to starve, but new, industrial projects such as TELEVISION have been hard hit. Television must import everything in the line of equipment and working materials. And here we are—in the last quarter, ready to make final preparation for beginning and unable to get final essentials for our work. I must ‘hold the line’ ‘keep high the morale and spirits of my workers’, continue with everything it is possible to do—and there is much to do—and radiate assurance that everything will be all right!”

One year after this letter was written the CPP government under President Nkrumah was overthrown in a U.S.-engineered police and military coup. Nkrumah was out of the country on a peace mission to China and North Vietnam seeking to find a solution to the escalating imperialist war against the people of Southeast Asia. The coup led to the purging of the CPP from government and the elimination of hundreds of political and economic projects.

Graham Du Bois was placed under house arrest while being removed from her directorship of Ghana National Television. Many others were killed, imprisoned and driven into exile. Nkrumah left Peking after being told of the coup stopping over in Cairo en route to Conakry, Guinea led by President Ahmed Sekou Toure, Secretary General of the Democratic Party of Guinea (PDG).

Shirley Graham Du Bois with Malcolm X in Ghana, May 1964

Nkrumah was given not only political asylum in Guinea but was appointed by the government as co-president. He would settle there until 1971 when he was sent to Bucharest, Romania for treatment of cancer. He died on April 27, 1972.

Graham Du Bois was able to leave Ghana and would settle in Cairo and the People’s Republic of China where she died in 1976.

The role of Shirley Graham Du Bois and Dr. W.E.B. Du Bois in Ghana was indicative of the political character of the CPP government from the period of tactical action (1951-56) to independence (1957-66). Hundreds of African Americans either visited or settled in Ghana during this time period, many of whom making technical and political contributions to the African Revolution which was centered in Accra.

Since the 1960s, the work of the Du Boises has gained attention among many students, intellectuals and activists in the U.S. and internationally. Nevertheless, the political significance of their contributions remains highly obscured due to the continuing institutionally racist and anti-Communist social atmosphere which prevails in colleges and universities in America.

The current generation of activists and intellectuals must unearth and review these monumental achievements in order to gain clearer insight into the actual political, social and economic history of the U.S. There is much within this period of 20th century historical processes that could be utilized in building stronger movements for Pan-Africanism and Socialism in the contemporary era.

Posted in AfricaComments Off on Anti-Imperialism, Pan-Africanism and Nkrumah’s Ghana. The Historic Role of Shirley Graham Du Bois

MI6 SPY بالصور .. تعرف على عميل جديد للمخابرات البريطانية

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الارهابي عبد العزيز الماشي ولد في مدينة منبج ريف حلب ودرس في جامعة لندن وهو يعيش في لندن منذ ٨ سنوات.

يحرض على القتل ويشكل مجموعات للاغتيال وملاحقة كل الشرفاء الوطنيين الذين يدافعون عن سورية وشعبها ويتواصل  مع السفارة الصهيونية في بريطانيا ويساعدهم في جمع معلومات عن بعض الاشخاص العرب بالاضافة الى متابعة شؤون بعض جرحى المجموعات الارهابية الذين تعالجوا في مستشفيات الصهاينة في فلسطين المحتلة.

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Posted in SyriaComments Off on MI6 SPY بالصور .. تعرف على عميل جديد للمخابرات البريطانية

Erdogan: The Sultan Of An Illusionary Ottoman Empire

NOVANEWS
 
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This is the fourth and last in a series of articles based in part on eyewitness accounts about the rapidly deteriorating socio-political conditions in Turkey and what the future may hold for the country. The first, second and third articles are available here: First, Second, Third.

In many conversations and encounters I had over the years with former Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, he emphatically echoed his boss President Erdogan’s grandiose vision that by 2023 (the 100th anniversary of the Turkish Republic), Turkey will become as powerful and influential as the Ottoman Empire was during its heyday. Under the best of circumstances, Turkey cannot realize Erdogan’s far-fetched dream. Had he stayed the course, however, with his socio-political and judiciary reforms and economic developments, as he had during his first nine years in power, Turkey could have become a major player on the global stage and a regional powerhouse.

Sadly, Erdogan abandoned much of the impressive democratic reforms he championed, and embarked upon a systematic Islamization of the country while dismantling the pillars of democracy. He amassed unprecedented powers and transformed Turkey from a democratic to an autocratic country, ensuring that he has the last word on all matters of state.

In retrospect, it appears that Erdogan had never committed himself to a democratic form of government. The reforms he undertook during his first nine years in power were largely induced by the European Union’s requirements from any country seeking membership, which he exploited as a means by which to propel himself toward his ultimate goal. A quote attributed to him in 1999 describes precisely what his real intentions were from the day he rose to power. “Democracy” he said, “is like a bus, when you arrive at your destination, you step off.”

His role model is Mustafa Kemal Atatürk (meaning “Father of the Turks”), who founded the Turkish Republic in 1923.  Both share similar personal attributes as they sought to lead the nation with an iron fist while disregarding any separation of power. However, Atatürk was determined to establish a Westernized secular democratic state while Erdogan went in the opposite direction.

Erdogan steadily moved to create a theocracy where Islamic tradition and values reign supreme while assuming Atatürk’s image, which is revered by most Turks. Erdogan presents himself as one who leads with determination and purpose, generating power from his popular support, ultimately seeking to replace Atatürk; with the new amendments to the constitution, he will be endowed with powers even greater than Atatürk ever held.

With his growing popularity and most impressive economic growth, Erdogan successfully created the status of a strong and resolute leader—the “father” of a new Turkish Republic—and artfully penetrated the consciousness of the Turkish public while using Islam as the undisputed pathway that will lead Turkey to greatness. He is determined to preside at the 100th anniversary of the Turkish Republic over a powerful nation among the top ten largest global economies and that extends its influence East and West, akin to the prodigious influence that the Ottoman Empire enjoyed.

To realize his grand vision, Erdogan took several measures to consolidate his absolute power.

First, clearing the way: Erdogan embarked on the complete marginalization or elimination of anyone, in and outside the ruling AK Party, that challenged his authority or advanced new ideas for solving the country’s problems. Those who did not support his policies and dared to question his judgment were not spared. He resorted to conspiracy theories, accusing his political opponents of being enemies of the state aiming to topple his government, in order to continue unopposed to realize his vision for the country, analogous to the influence and outreach of the Ottoman Empire. He even fired his long-time friend and confidant Davutoglu because Davutoglu differed from him in connection with the Kurdish problem, and especially because of Davutoglu’s reluctance to support the constitutional amendments that will grant the president sweeping and unprecedented powers.

Second, the need for a culprit: Erdogan needed a scapegoat to blame for any of his shortcomings, and found the Gulen movement to be the perfect culprit that would provide him with the cover to overshadow the massive corruption that has swept his government. This also provided him with the “justification” to crack down on many social, political, and institutional entities, silencing the media, controlling the judiciary, and subordinating the military.

The aftermath of the attempted military coup in July 2016 gave him the ammunition to conduct a society-wide witch-hunt, providing him with the excuse to purge tens of thousands of people from academia, civil society, judiciary, military, and internal security. This has allowed him to assume total control of all departments in the government and private sector. He described his purge as a necessary evil to cleanse the public of the ‘cancer’ that has gripped the country. In so doing, he ensured that the political system revolves around the presidency, leaving him completely unchallenged to pursue his imperial dream to resurrect the stature of the Ottoman Empire as the country prepares to vote in the constitutional referendum on April 16.

Third, the creation of Ottoman symbolism: To project his grandiose vision, Erdogan needed to instill Ottoman images into the public consciousness, including the building of a 1,100-room ‘White Palace’ as his residence at a prohibitive cost to taxpayers. His most recent project was the Çamlica Mosque, the now-largest mosque in Istanbul, standing on the eponymous hill that overlooks the entire city.

Recently, Erdogan started the construction of another mosque in Taksim Square—once the site of the fiercest protests against Erdogan in his career—with all the style of the Ottoman era. Erdogan has even instructed that the national anthem be played on modified drums and brass instruments to make the music sound as if it were being played by bands of the Ottoman period. His purpose is to indoctrinate the public in a subliminal way to his perspective of the glorious Ottoman period.

Fourth, foreign policy assertiveness: Under Erdogan, Turkey has become increasingly assertive and forceful in the region. In Cyprus, he is determined to strike a deal largely on his terms. In Iraq, he placed Turkish troops over the objections of the Iraqi government to maintain his ruthless war against the Kurds. In Syria, he allowed thousands of foreign fighters, including many who have joined ISIS, to cross the border to strengthen the anti-Assad fight, while fighting the Syrian Kurds to prevent them from establishing their own autonomous rule, fearing that the Turkish Kurds would also demand autonomous rule of their own.

Erdogan further promoted the policy of “zero problem with neighbors,” and although presently Turkey has problems with just about every neighbor (and its prospective EU membership has completely diminished), he continues to claim that Turkey enjoys good relations internationally. Erdogan still uses Turkey’s membership in NATO as a sign of greatness; the fact that Turkey has the second-largest number of ground troops in  NATO reinforces his illusion that Ankara enjoys unrivaled military prowess in the region and commands the respect and attention of the international community that the Ottoman Empire was accorded.

Fifth, promoting Islam as a powerful tool: Erdogan is also using Sunni Islam to promote the country as a republic with Islamic ideals supported by a loyal state apparatus. He portrays himself as the leader of the Sunni world that would restore the Ottoman era of influence while cementing his authoritarian rule in the form of a neo-Sultan. To be sure, Erdogan is vigorously promoting – with the support of his party – Islamic nationalism systematically and meticulously. Mustafa Akyol, a Turkish analyst of politics and culture and author of the new book The Islamic Jesus says that “political propaganda is in your face every day, every single moment. If you turn on TV, if you open newspapers…”

Former Prime Minister Davutoglu said in 2015 that Turkey “will re-found the Ottoman state.” Although Davutoglu was fired, he—like most Turkish officials—depicts the government as the rightful heir of the Ottoman legacy. To that end, Erdogan uses Islam as the unifying theme that would propel Turkey to the greatness that the Ottoman Empire enjoyed. In fact, Turkish religious leaders have always thought of themselves as the standard-bearer of Islamic civilization, and though this failed with the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, to them it must now be corrected. As they would have it, “Turks once again should lead the ummah [Islamic community] as the new Ottomans.”

Sadly, Erdogan, who is still seen as a hero by nearly half of the Turkish population, is leading the country on a treacherous path. Turkey and its people have the resources, creativity, and institutions to make Turkey a significant power. Erdogan, who demonstrated an uncanny ability to harness his country’s natural and human resources, could have made Turkey such a power on the global stage. Indeed, he would have been the Atatürk of the new era had he simply continued with his historic reforms while protecting the rights of every individual and creating a real model of Islamic democracy.

The collapse of the Ottoman Empire was largely precipitated, among other things, by its internal political decadence, the arbitrary exercising of power, and gross violations of human rights that dramatically eroded the foundation on which the empire was built.

In whichever form Erdogan wants to resurrect the Ottoman Empire, he will fail because no country can survive, let alone become great, as long as the government walks on the backs of the people and stifles their freedom to act, speak, and dream.

There is where the greatness of any nation rests and endures—the Ottoman Empire never provided a model worthy of such emulation.

Posted in TurkeyComments Off on Erdogan: The Sultan Of An Illusionary Ottoman Empire

Dangerous Crossroads: America Threatens China

NOVANEWS

Dangerous Crossroads: America Threatens China, US Deploys THAAD Missile System in South Korea, Beijing Warns of Nuclear Arms Race

 
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The US has begun the installation of its Terminal High Altitude Area Defence (THAAD) anti-ballistic missile system in South Korea, provoking an angry reaction from China, which warned that it could trigger a nuclear arms race in the region. The provocative move will heighten the already tense situation on the Korean Peninsula as the US and South Korea engage in huge annual war games.

Two trucks, each mounted with a THAAD launch pad, were landed aboard a C-17 cargo plane at the US military’s Osan Air Base, south of Seoul, on Monday night. According to South Korean military officials, more equipment and personnel will arrive in the coming weeks. The THAAD battery installation is likely to be completed as early as May or June.

US officials exploited North Korea’s test launch of four ballistic missiles on Monday morning as the pretext for commencing the THAAD installation. However, the final go-ahead for the THAAD deployment, which was agreed by South Korea last July, occurred last week when the South Korean government acquired the planned site in a land swap deal with the conglomerate Lotte.

Washington also insists that the THAAD placement is purely defensive and needed to counter North Korea’s nuclear arsenal. In reality, the THAAD system is offensive in character. It is an important component of an expanding US anti-ballistic missile system in Asia that is primarily aimed at preparing for nuclear war against China, not North Korea.

US imperialism, which has an estimated 4,000 nuclear warheads, has never ruled out a first nuclear strike and is spending $1 trillion to upgrade its nuclear weapons and delivery systems. Its anti-ballistic missile systems are designed to neutralise the ability of any enemy to retaliate in the event of a US nuclear attack. The Federation of American Scientists estimated that China had about 260 nuclear warheads as of 2015.

The THAAD system is designed to intercept incoming ballistic missiles at high altitude. It consists of a powerful X-band radar system to track missiles at long range, linked to truck-mounted interceptors designed to destroy a hostile missile in flight. In the event of war with China, the THAAD system would not only protect key US military bases in South Korea and Japan. Its X-band radar could detect and track missile launches deep inside the Chinese mainland.

Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang yesterday reiterated Beijing’s opposition to the THAAD deployment. Geng warned that China would “take necessary measures to defend our security interests and the consequences will be shouldered by the United States and South Korea.”

Russia also condemned the THAAD installation. Victor Ozerov, who chairs Russia’s Federal Defense and Security Committee, branded the deployment as “another provocation against Russia” aimed, if not at encircling Russia, “then at least to besiege it from the west and the east.”

The Chinese government has already taken retaliatory moves against South Korea, closing more than 20 stores owned by Lotte in China on the pretext of safety violations, and has advised travel agents not to sell South Korean packages to Chinese tourists. The state-owned media has suggested a wider boycott of South Korean goods and even the severing of diplomatic relations with Seoul.

A commentary in the official Xinhua news agency warned that the THAAD deployment “will bring an arms race in the region.” Hinting that China would enlarge its nuclear arsenal to counter the US anti-ballistic missile systems, it declared: “More missile shields on one side inevitably bring more nuclear missiles of the opposing side that can break through the missile shield.”

The suggestion that China could expand its nuclear arsenal only underscores the reactionary character of the Chinese regime’s response to the escalating economic and military threats by the Trump administration. The Chinese Communist Party represents the interests of an ultra-rich oligarchy, not Chinese workers and the poor. Its military build-up and whipping up of Chinese nationalism heightens the danger of war and divides the working class.

A nuclear arms race between China and the United States would be profoundly destabilising in Asia and the world. An expansion of the Chinese nuclear arsenal could prompt South Korea and Japan to develop their own nuclear weapons, and encourage India to enlarge its nuclear arsenal, exacerbating tensions throughout South Asia, particularly with Pakistan.

The Trump administration has targeted China, warning of trade war measures, threatening military action against Chinese-controlled islets in the South China Sea and suggesting it could tear up the “One China” policy that forms the bedrock of US-China relations.

Trump has repeatedly accused China of not imposing crippling sanctions on its ally North Korea to force it to abandon its nuclear weapons and missiles. The White House is currently engaged in a review of US strategy toward North Korea, details of which have been leaked to the media, including proposals for pre-emptive military strikes on North Korea and regime-change operations.

North Korea provides a convenient pretext for the US military build-up in North East Asia against China. The New York Times reported that one option under consideration is the return of tactical nuclear weapons to South Korea—adjacent not only to North Korea, but also China.

Trump has already outlined a huge expansion of the US military and has tweeted that the US has “to greatly strengthen and expand its nuclear capacity.” Moreover, the US strategy is shifting from the use of nuclear weapons as a last resort to the active consideration of a limited nuclear war.

North Korea is rapidly emerging as a dangerous global flashpoint. A small incident, either accidental or calculated, has the potential to trigger a catastrophic conflict on the Korean Peninsula that would draw in nuclear-armed powers such as China and Russia.

The only social force capable of halting the drive to world war is the international working class, through building a unified anti-war movement based on socialist principles to put an end to capitalism and its outmoded nation-state system, which is the source of war.

Posted in USA, ChinaComments Off on Dangerous Crossroads: America Threatens China

Moscow Diplomacy and the Geopolitical Balance of Power in the Middle East

NOVANEWS
 
Middle-East-Map-460x319

In March, Moscow became the center of the diplomatic activity of global and regional powers involved in a number of the ongoing crises in the Middle East. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is due in Moscow March 9 for a two-day visit. He will meet his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin and will participate in a session of the Council on High-Level Cooperation between Russia and Turkey.

At the same time, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will visit Moscow to meet Putin. The two leaders will discuss the current situation in the Middle East and aspects of the Palestinian-Israeli settlement, according to the Kremlin press service.

UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson will meet Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in Moscow in the coming weeks. It will be the first UK foreign secretary visit to the country since 2012.

High profile Swiss diplomats involved in the so-called “Geneva format” aimed on “resolving the Syrian conflict” and some military and political officials of the Islamic Republic of Iran will also visit Moscow, according to available information. 

On March 8-9, Germany’s Foreign Minister Siegmar Gabriel will make a visit to Moscow to meet with his Russian counterpart.

Earlier this month:

  • On March 1, Deputy Foreign Minister and Special Presidential Representative for the Middle East and Africa Mikhail Bogdanov met with Secretary-General of the League of Arab States Ahmed Aboul-Gheit.
  • On March 2, Lavrov met with Prime Minister of the Government of National Accord of Libya Fayez al-Sarraj.
  • On March 3, Bagdanov meet with a representative of the leader of the Lebanese Progressive Socialist Party.
  • On March 7, Bagdanov met with Palestinian Ambassador to Russia Abdel Hafiz Nofal. At the same day, Bogdanov and Yitzhak Herzog, the head of the Zionist Union and the the Israeli Labor Party and the leader of the opposition in the Israeli parliament, discussed the situation in Syria and the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

The dramatic incensement of the diplomatic activity comes amid the increased instability in Libya, the de-facto predetermined collapse of ISIS in Syria and Iraq, the tensions in the Golan Heights area and the new round of the Israeli-Palestine crisis.

The new Israeli law which retroactively legalizes 4,000 Jewish settler homes built on private Palestinian property in the West Bank, the no-tolerance strategy towards Palestinian protesters push to the radicalization of the Israeli-Arab standoff in the region. After the collapse of ISIS, its former members could join existing or create new radical Sunni organizations exploiting the Israeli-Arab tensions in order to gain funds and support. The growth of terrorist activity and further deterioration of the security in Israel will be the easily expected result.

At the same time, the course of the Syrian conflict allows Hezbollah to get more free means and resources at the Syrian-Israeli and the Israeli-Lebanese border. This also sets a ground for further escalation amid the continued Israeli military strikes against Hezbollah and Syrian army targets.

The hardline anti-Iranian and pro-Israeli stance of the Trump administration is another fact in the expected crisis.

On the one hand, the Trump administration supports Israel in the growing confrontation and aims to limit the Russian-Iranian cooperation and the Iranian influence in the region.

On the other hand, White House has wide plans of anti-ISIS military operations in Syria’s Raqqah and Deir Ezzor, and Iraq’s Mosul. Iran plays a key role in both countries and the US-led coalition de-facto cooperates with pro-Iranian forces in Iraq. The Iranian-Syrian-Russian alliance also plays a key role in the standoff in northern Syria where Turkey aims to crack down US-backed Kurdish forces. In both cases, the White House is pushed to “cooperate” with Tehran directly or indirectly.

In this situation, Ankara pursues a goal of creating the Turkish-controlled puppet state in northern Syria and seeks to expand further its military and diplomatic influence with participating in the US-led Raqqah advance – what is not possible while the US directly backs Kurdish forces. The UK diplomacy plays a role of the medium of the global elites’ stance.

All these allow supposing that the ongoing Moscow-centered diplomatic developments will likely frame the balance of power in the Middle East in the post-ISIS period.

The aforementioned complex of meetings and events could be compared to the Teheran Conference in 1943 when all key players understand that the regional relations will shift dramatically but the prospects of this shift is not clear.

Posted in Middle East, RussiaComments Off on Moscow Diplomacy and the Geopolitical Balance of Power in the Middle East

Big Brother Spying in America. Perilously Close to a “Totalitarian State”

NOVANEWS
 
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US spy agencies trample on Bill of Rights protections. Their spying domestically and abroad is pervasive.

Anything goes is official policy, rule of law principles circumvented. Edward Snowden earlier said he hoped his revelations would make people worldwide aware of how their freedoms and protections are compromised.

Mass surveillance goes on in ways few people realize. Numerous techniques are used – metadata collected unrelated to national security without court authorized warrants.

Phone conversations are recorded, emails collected and stored. New WikiLeaks documents revealed that the CIA (and presumably the NSA, FBI and other US spy agencies) can circumvent encryption, turn television sets into listening devices, and monitor people in ways Orwell never imagined.

If its information is accurate, Langley has over 1,000 malware systems and other software, able to infiltrate and control personal electronics.

Documents WikiLeaks obtained perhaps came from the agency’s Center for Cyber Intelligence – operating in Langley, VA and Washington’s Frankfurt, Germany consulate.

Via Twitter, Snowden said the document trove “looks authentic.” Sophisticated spying capability leaves everyone vulnerable, including foreign leaders and the president of the United States.

William Binney is a cryptanalyst, mathematician, creator of the NSA’s global surveillance system turned whistleblower. Agency activities are unconstitutional, he stressed.

Earlier he said we’re perilously close to a “totalitarian state.” The NSA and other US intelligence agencies can spy on virtually everything we do.

Information obtained is laundered, making it look legitimate. Binney calls it “a total corruption of the justice system…a totalitarian process, (meaning) we are now in a police state.”

Monday on Fox News, he said Trump is “absolutely right” to claim he was wiretapped and monitored. “His phone calls, everything he did electronically, was being monitored.”

Everyone’s electronic communications are monitored and stored. Big Brother is real. Binney called the FISA court “irrelevant.” What’s going on is “outside of the courts…outside of the Congress.”

He designed the system enabling this type sophisticated spying on anyone. America’s intelligence community was likely behind sensitive leaks about Trump, gaining firsthand knowledge of his communications by monitoring him electronically.

It’s unclear whether Congress will subpoena spy agency officials to testify under oath about Trump’s accusations – and if so, how far will it go in exposing what likely went on.

Posted in USAComments Off on Big Brother Spying in America. Perilously Close to a “Totalitarian State”

Obama Awarded JFK Medal of Courage after Eight Years of War and Drone Bombings

NOVANEWS
 
obama drones

Former U.S. President Barack Obama was just named the 2017 recipient of the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award, “the most prestigious award for public servants.” Named after JFK’s 1957 book, Profiles in Courage, it is awarded annually by the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation to “public servants who have made courageous decisions of conscience without regard for the personal or professional consequences.

Obama will receive this award for his efforts in promoting democratic principles in the face of severe political opposition by members of Congress and a divided national political body.

Faced with unrelenting political opposition, President Obama has embodied the definition of courage that my grandfather cites in the opening lines of ‘Profiles in Courage’: grace under pressure,” Schlossberg said. “Throughout his two terms in office, he represented all Americans with decency, integrity, and an unshakeable commitment to the greater good.”

Obama is being recognized for “his enduring commitment to democratic ideals and elevating the standard of political courage in a new century,” the foundation said, citing the expansion of health care options for millions, restoring diplomatic relations with Cuba and leadership on an international climate change agreement. [Source]

Of course, Mr. Obama is humbled, as he should be; however, an award like this gives pause for those who wonder why so much of Obama’s legacy of war, military adventurism, surveillance, and indiscriminate drone bombings of Middle Eastern and African people is so under-represented in conversation about the merits of his eight-year tenure as president.

Humbled to be recognized by a family with a legacy of service. Who’s your ? Tell me about them: https://www.obama.org/your-voice/  https://twitter.com/JFKLibrary/status/837318374233354248 

Photo published for Add Your Voice: Obama Foundation
Add Your Voice: Obama Foundation

The Obama Foundation is a living, working start-up for citizenship — an ongoing project for us to shape, together, what it means to be a good citizen.

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Obama – 2009 Nobel Peace Prize Winner

In 2009, then President Obama was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his actions in the first year of his presidency including the “promotion of nuclear nonproliferation and a ‘new climate’ in international relations fostered by Obama, especially in reaching out to the Muslim world.” When the Nobel Prize was announced, many on both sides of the political spectrum rightfully thought it was a joke at first, and as Obama’s presidency ground on, it became absolutely clear that while although Obama was indeed a charismatic, charming, and visually appealing president, he in no way was concerned with halting U.S. imperialism or even slowing down the infamous drone bombings which have killed thousands of innocent people, including women and children.

The Nobel Peace Prize, and now the JFK Profile in Courage Award, are indeed jokes because Obama has never been a true supporter of democracy, liberty, or even peace. Not only did he fail to honor his promise to close Guantanamo Bay prison, but he also ended up being the first president in U.S. history to be at war for the entire duration of his presidency, averaging a whopping 72 bombs a day dropped on foreign countries, most of which were majority Muslim nations.

Every Tuesday — reported the New York Times — he personally selected those who would be murdered by mostly hellfire missiles fired from drones. Weddings, funerals, shepherds were attacked, along with those attempting to collect the body parts festooning the “terrorist target”. A leading Republican senator, Lindsey Graham, estimated, approvingly, that Obama’s drones killed 4,700 people. “Sometimes you hit innocent people and I hate that,” he said, but we’ve taken out some very senior members of Al Qaeda.” ~John Pilger

Furthermore, Obama’s accomplishments as president include the destruction of Libya, the financing of political coups in other nations, launching U.S. military intervention in Africa, massive advances in domestic and international surveillance, unprecedented persecution of whistleblowers, and the material support of Islamic terrorist organizations like Al Qaeda and ISIS.

An Anti-Democratic Legacy of Imperialism

While on the surface, awards like these are fantastic for public relations, we live in the era of half-truths, hypocrisy and ignored realities. A time when organizations which have historically promoted democracy, justice, peace and liberty openly engage in superficiality and sycophancy, choosing to remain blind in the presence of betrayal by our leaders. It is a sign of the times, though. People no longer seem to care for substance or truth, only style and bias confirmation. War mongers don’t deserve peace prizes, and presidents who leave behind a legacy of imperialism and warfare do not deserve to be honored for their so-called courage in the service of democracy.

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