Obama in Cuba: Will the Visit Advance the US Cultural War Against Cubans?

NOVANEWS
Global Research

There are several aspects to this cultural war, in its broadest sense, which is presently being waged against Cuban socialist culture. One of these themes is the massive US media war and political disinformation campaign on the issue of civil rights in Cuba as part of human rights.

With only several days until Obama’s arrival in Cuba, the new Cuba–US relationship is entering into a very crucial and difficult stage. As part of yet another profound historical analysis of Cuba–US relations, Dr. Elier Ramírez Cañedo, one of Cuba’s most outstanding historians and experts on the confrontation and attempts toward “normalization” between the two countries, wrote an astute observation in reference to a remark Obama made on December 19, 2014. In the context of the US’s desire to bring about change in Cuba, the President said, “…how societies change is country-specific, it’s culturally specific.”

Ramírez Cañedo deduced:

In the face of this open declaration of cultural war, understanding culture in its broadest sense, beyond the artistic and literary meaning, it would be naive to think that history will not be – indeed it already is – one of the fundamental targets of those who seek to undermine from within the socialist culture in Cuba.

He also wrote in this same article:

But if some in Cuba or outside, especially in the revolutionary ranks, make the mistake of forgetting or neglecting the importance of study and deep knowledge of the past in the present circumstances, it would play into the hands of those who now with new clothes persist in their goals of destroying the Cuban revolution at its very roots.

The Massive US Media and Political War

There are several aspects to this cultural war, in its broadest sense, which is presently being waged against Cuban socialist culture. One of these themes is the massive US media war and political disinformation campaign on the issue of civil rights in Cuba as part of human rights. The US narrative is that indirectly or directly – and grudgingly – it acknowledges Cuba’s accomplishments in the realm of social rights, as a subset of human rights, with regard to health services, education, culture and sports. However, it accuses Cuba of violating individual civil rights and political rights, referring, as an example, to the often-cited US-centric double standard of the “right to free speech, free press and protest.” Thus, according to this anecdotal explanation, Cuba is not a democracy, since it violates civil/political rights and, by extension, human rights.

However, civil rights, such as political rights, comprise an important part of the foundation that safeguards and promotes the full spectrum of human rights. The most significant civil right afforded to Cubans – and demanded by Cubans – is to participate in its own political system. This tradition, while not perfect and thus always in evolution, stems back to the collective mass revolutionary struggle leading to the victory of the Cuban Revolution and thus to the people’s political power in January 1959. One cannot forget this history.

Civil Rights

This legacy has continued through many forms while seeking to improve participatory democracy. If Cubans had not had – and did not now have – the capacity to exercise their own political power, how could other human rights have been won and guaranteed? For example, if Cubans had not exercised their individual politics rights in the 1950s to win political power, how would the securing of social rights – such as the right to health, education, culture and sports – have been accomplished in the first place?

Since 1959, the Cuban Revolutionary Government strives to involve the participation of the people to improve these social civil rights. The citizens, for their part, endeavour to strengthen their own real political power to safeguard and upgrade their social/economic/cultural human rights. There is ample space within the Cuban socialist culture for this debate and action to flourish in order to move Cuban socialism from one stage to the next. However, this democracy in motion is ignored by the US ruling circles.

Washington and most of the US mainstream media only recognize those civil political rights as a component part of human rights defined and demanded by what they call Cuba’s “civil society.” This very marginal “opposition” is ideologically and/or financially dependent on the US, which has created it in the first place. Their goal is to act as a US Trojan horse to destroy the Cuban Revolution from within. Of course, this fringe is hardly a basis for undermining the Cuban Revolution. Thus, in order to reinforce the Trojan horse, the US also targets the more than 500,000 self-employed workers. This growing section of Cuban society is wrongly perceived by Cuba’s neighbours to the North as natural fifth column recruits to the US “way of life and values” (capitalism and dependence on the US) to undermine Cuban socialist culture. The US may underestimate the patriotism of the vast majority of Cubans, including the growing number of self-employed, who the US unjustifiably refers to as the “private sector,” as though they are detached from Cuban society and its socialist culture, which is not the case.

The “civil rights” of US-fabricated opposition and any other sections of the society that can be grafted on to them defy the civil and political rights of the vast majority of the Cuban people.

Challenges on the Horizon

There are several elements complicating the current situation in Cuba since the thaw that was initiated by both countries on December 17, 2014.

Within Cuba itself, Ramírez Cañedo is concerned, and rightly so, about some “in the revolutionary ranks” that become victim to this US-fuelled cultural war. This would come about, as seen by the author of this piece, among other hurdles, by forgetting Cuba’s past regarding civil/political and social human rights. Thus, individuals would fall into the trap of referring to the false dichotomy between civil/political rights and other human rights, such as health, education, culture and sports.

Outside of Cuba, the situation has also become more complex. Before December 17, 2014, many commentators had been strongly opposed to the US policy on Cuba. There was a gap between them and Washington. Now the situation has changed. Some of them have become the vanguard of Obama–Cuba policy, forgetting that the US has only changed tactics. They have morphed into apologists of the new policy, which serves to finally achieve its strategic goal of undermining – now from within – the Cuban Revolution. One of the political/ideological foundations of this new vocation is to say, in effect, “We concede that Cuba has made many achievements on social rights such as health and education as part of human rights, but civil and political rights are being violated in Cuba.” Political civil rights are thus set in contrast to social/economic/cultural rights. Alternatively, some may remain silent on Cuba’s revolutionary style of political civil rights, thus, wittingly or not, also assisting the US in its cultural war against Cuba.

For its part, the Cuban official newspaper Granma correctly wrote, in a decisive and cutting editorial on March 8, 2016, that “Cuba defends the indivisibility, interdependence and universality of civil, political, economic, social and cultural human rights.”

The question is, will Obama’s visit to Cuba provide Cubans the opportunity to make headway against the cultural war, or will it allow the US to make inroads? Or are both these scenarios on the horizon?

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US Foreign Policy Gurus Say Souring Relations with Russia Was Washington’s Fault

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By Andrei AKULOV 

It was quite different in the 1990s — early 2000s. Significant improvements were achieved in the relations between the US and Russia, including in the sphere of military cooperation. Those days there was no doubt the Russia-US relationship had a great future.

The military met each other as friends and allies to discuss what could be done to boost cooperation and prepare for joint actions to counter terrorist threats. Then the process got stalled. The relations deteriorated. All the efforts applied went down the drain. What really caused it to happen? Today US foreign policy old timers and savvies have something to say about it.

Consistent disregard for Russia’s interests by the US, as well as Washington’s dismissive attitude towards Moscow in the post-Cold War era, have led to strained relations between the two, former US Defense Secretary William Perry told The Guardian on March 9.

Perry said that a complete lack of regard for Russia as a power or a dialogue partner from Washington officials played a crucial role in this reversal.

According to the opinion of former US Defense Chief, reckless expanding NATO, making plans to deploy a missile defense system in Eastern Europe, and supporting the so-called «color revolutions» in former Soviet republics were all steps in the wrong direction, which were all taken without ever even considering Russia’s concerns.

Perry also denounced the George W. Bush administration’s decision to station a US missile defense system in eastern European countries – particularly in Poland. He also emphasized that the US support of the so called «color revolutions», was another serious blow to bilateral relations between Moscow and Washington.

Jack F. Matlock Jr., ambassador to the USSR from 1987 to 1991 and the author of the book titled Reagan and Gorbachev: How the Cold War Endedhas his own views on the matter.

According to him, after the USSR ceased to exist the United States insisted on treating Russia as the loser. The former ambassador writes that Russian President Vladimir Putin was the first foreign leader to call and offer support when terrorists attacked the United States on Sept. 11, 2001. He cooperated with the United States when it invaded Afghanistan, and he voluntarily removed Russian bases from Cuba and Cam Ranh Bay in Vietnam. In return, he got further expansion of NATO in the Baltics and the Balkans, and plans for American bases there; withdrawal from the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty; invasion of Iraq without UN Security Council approval; overt participation in the «color revolutions» in Ukraine, Georgia and Kyrgyzstan; and then, probing some of the firmest red lines any Russian leader would draw, talk of taking Georgia and Ukraine into NATO.

Speaking at the meeting of the Committee for the Republic, an organization established by former diplomats and government officials, Mr Matlock went on to lambaste Obama for using the State of the Union to personally attack Russian President Putin.

«His comments were totally out of place», Matlock said. He also attacked Congress for their own interference in passing the Magnitsky Act. «The Russians are reacting to a policy of insufferable arrogance and humiliation», he said. He criticized the whole policy with regard to Ukraine and «regime change». «If you can think that you can solve all problems by removing a leader, you’re wrong. Didn’t we learn the lessons from Iraq?» asked the former ambassador.

Henry Kissinger is clearly still one of America’s foremost foreign policy gurus who served as National Security Advisor and later concurrently as United States Secretary of State in the administrations of presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford. He believes that instead of trying to break Russia, America’s goal should be to «integrate» it into the international order taking Moscow’s interests into account.

According to the US foreign policy vet, that would begin with recognition of the realities of Russian power and interests, treating Russia like the great power that it is, and on that foundation exploring «whether their concerns can be reconciled with our necessities».

The opportunities to change the relationship for the better are here to stay.

On March 3, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov stressed that a policy of confrontation with the West is not something that Moscow wants. «We are not seeking confrontation with the United States, or the European Union, or NATO. On the contrary, Russia is open to the widest possible cooperation with its Western partners. We continue to believe that the best way to ensure the interests of the peoples living in Europe is to form a common economic and humanitarian space from the Atlantic to the Pacific, so that the newly formed Eurasian Economic Union could be an integrating link between Europe and Asia Pacific», the Russian foreign policy chief wrote in an article.

US candidates in the presidential race (except Republican candidate Donald Trump), as well as many in the Obama administration, find the idea of trying to work with Russia appalling when they speak in public. There is a reason to believe they don’t entirely share that view, but at least that’s what they say. No matter who wins in November, a new president will have to shape new policy on Russia. He or she will have to make decisive choices. It presupposes immense responsibility. The Americans are normally reluctant to admit mistakes, but it’s important to understand what is the root of the problem. That’s when the opinion of foreign policy gurus stands one in good stead.

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Is the Media an Accomplice in Drone Murders?

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By Emran Feroz – teleSUR 

Since 2001, the United States has been killing people with weaponized drones, most times not knowing the identities of the victims.

The victims of drone strikes are nameless and invisible, despite the fact that most of them are civilians.

The Pentagon announced this week that more than 150 al-Shabab fighters have been killed by a U.S. drone strike in Somalia. The Pentagon spokesmen repeatedly talked about “fighters” and “terrorists” which “posed an imminent threat to the U.S.” But as usual, he offered no proof of his claims.

This kind of language has become normalized when it comes to the U.S. drone war, which is not just taking place in Somalia, but also in countries like Yemen, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iraq. What is significant regarding the regular attacks in these countries is the media coverage. In fact, it practically does not exist. The many victims of drone strikes are nameless and invisible. And if they appear in any media reports, all of them are completely dehumanized and described as “terrorists,” “suspected militants” or any other similar euphemism.

This was also the case after the latest strike in Somalia, a country the U.S. is officially not at war with. Shortly after the Pentagon’s announcement, many news outlets adopted the U.S. government’s version of the incident. The New York Times, for example, wrote about the killing of “150 fighters who were assembled for what American officials believe was a graduation ceremony.” “Militants” was also the term the Washington Post used to describe all the victims. It is necessary to point out that many other well-known media outlets from all over the world did the very same thing. As usual, there was a huge lack of any critical scrutinizing. Instead, media once again became a mouthpiece of the U.S. government by quoting its military officials and spreading their one-sided views constantly.

Since 2001, the United States has been killing people with weaponized drones, most times not knowing the identity of the victims. As of today, at least 6,000 people have been killed by these drone strikes. According to the London-based Bureau of Investigative Journalism, only 4 percent of drone victims in Pakistan were identified as a-Qaida members. But vastly more than 2,000 people have been killed there by drones during the last years.

Another country which is suffering heavily under drone strikes is Afghanistan, the most drone bombed country in the world. Between 2001 and 2013, 1,670 drone strikes took place in the country. It was in the city of Kandahar, the Taliban’s former stronghold, where the first strike by a weaponized drone took place in October 2001. The target, Taliban founder Mullah Mohammad Omar, was not killed on this day, but many other unknown people have been in the years since.

One of these people was Sadiq Rahim Jan, a 21-year-old food vendor from Paktia, eastern Afghanistan. He was murdered by a drone strike in July 2012. A few days later, media outlets in Kabul described him as a “Taliban commander.” The family members of Aisha Rashid have also been killed by a drone strike. The Afghan girl was four years old when a missile hit the pick-up of her family in Kunar, also in the east of the country. Fourteen passengers, including Aisha’s parents, were murdered. Only she survived – barely – with a ragged face. Initially, all the victims were described as “militants” by Afghan government officials and local media outlets.

Tariq Aziz, from North Waziristan shared a similar destiny. The 16-year-old anti-drone activist was killed by a drone strike in November 2011, together with his 12-year-old cousin Waheed. Unlike the case of Malala Yousafzai, the young Pashtun girl which was nearly killed by a member of the Pakistani Taliban and received a Nobel Peace Prize, Tariq’s case is widely unknown.

In all the mentioned cases, as well as many other, significant media coverage was nonexistent – or it described the victims as terrorists, extremists, militants, al-Qaida members, and so on. This is happening on a daily basis and there are also reasons why it is happening.

In the case of Sadiq, for example, his family became outraged after they noticed that local media outlets described their son and brother as a “Taliban commander.” On that day, the young Afghan was the only person who has been killed in the area. He never had any connection with any insurgent group, not to mention being a commander of them. One of the media outlets which spread these news was Radio Azadi, an Afghan branch of the US government’s external broadcast services. It should be more than obvious that the main aim of such a media platform is not spreading objective information.

Another example for this behaviour is Tolo TV, Afghanistan’s leading mainstream television channel. Last year, the channel’s news website reported that in July 2015 drone strikes in the eastern province of Nangarhar killed “nearly 250 Taliban and Daesh [Islamic State] insurgents.” The main source for this “reporting” was the National Directorate of Security (NDS), the Afghan intelligence service, which was built by the U.S. in the first days of the NATO invasion.

Tolo TV was created in 2004 by Saad Mohseni, an Afghan businessman who is being called an “Afghan Rupert Murdoch” and is considered one of the most powerful men in Afghanistan. The channel’s creation was mainly funded by the notorious United States Agency for International Development (USAID), which is widely known as one of the most important foreign policy tools of the White House.

In general, one can assume that many media outlets in Afghanistan were not created to support journalism and press freedom but to install media institutions who can be useful to represent particular interests. This is also the case in other countries which suffer from drone strikes.

Noor Behram, an investigative journalist from Northern Waziristan, is known for taking pictures of the drone murder scenes and spreading the victims’ faces. After Behram talked with journalists from Islamabad, Pakistan’s capital, he experienced that for them, a beard, long hair and a turban or a pakol, a traditional Afghan cap, is enough to describe male drone victims as “terrorists.” But nearly every man in this area looks like that. According to this logic, everyone, even myself when I am staying there, must be a terrorist.

Besides, Behram’s results fit into Washington’s practice that all military-aged males in a strike zone are considered as “militants.”

The U.S. and its allies needed propaganda organs to construct and justify their war on a medial level. Despite the question if this is moral or not, one should agree that it is also very logical because every war is based on propaganda – it was always like that and probably will never change.

But what remains is the question why so many people still believe such a biased media coverage and its constructed narrative of a good war which is only hitting the bad guys.

Posted in USA, Campaigns, PoliticsComments Off on Is the Media an Accomplice in Drone Murders?

Canadian duplicity and Nazi Apartheid

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Author’s Note: An elaboration of the Israeli-imposed deprivations on the Palestinian population is presented in an extraordinary , data-driven web-site called “Visualizing Palestine”, which also formed the basis of a student presentation at Hamilton’s (ON, Canada) McMaster University.

Information from the site, and the McMaster outdoor presentation, form the basis of much of the information in this article.

Special thanks to McMaster Muslims For Peace and Justice, and Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights.

By Mark Taliano 

If Canada were to support real, productive change, it would support rather than condemn peaceful citizen initiatives such as theBoycott Divest Sanction (BDS) campaign.

Instead, Canada continues to support international lawlessness abroad, and an on-going domestic policy of police state repression, welded to a nexus of complicit agencies — most notably mainstream media — to stifle our freedom of dissent.

International law presents a powerful case against apartheid Israel.

In an earlier article, for example, this author noted that,

“The International Criminal Court (ICJ) ruled in 2004 that the West Bank wall was ‘illegal in its entirety,’ and that compensation should be paid to those affected. Additionally, the U.N General Assembly passed a resolution supporting the ICJ’s call to dismantle the wall.”

Not only is the wall a breach of international law, but it also represents a “land-grab”. 85% of the wall is located on the occupied West Bank. Upon completion, 46% of the West bank will be locked into ghettos.  Even now, there are separate, apartheid road systems which separate Israeli from Palestinian drivers.

The territory of Gaza is accurately described as an “open air prison”. The illegal blockade of the land, air, and sea, is itself is a form of collective punishment, and a violation of the Geneva Conventions and international humanitarian law.

Israel imposes a “diet” on Palestinians. A 2010 study entitled, Humanitarian Minimum| Israel’s Role in Creating Food And Water Insecurity in the Gaza Strip provides strong evidence that Israel’s imposition of food and water insecurity on Gaza is part of its illegal military strategy of collective punishment.

According to REPORT TO UNRWA: THE GAZA HEALTH SECTOR AS OF JUNE 201490 % of the water in Gaza is unfit for human consumption. A June, 2006 Israeli airstrike on the Gaza Power Plant contributed to a nexus of health deprivations, one symptom of which is that one third of Gazan households are provided with running (unclean) water for 6-8 hours once every four days. Whereas an Israeli uses about 300, liters of (clean) water per person, per day, Gazans are restricted to 70 litres (contaminated) water per day. Again all of these deprivations were pre-planned.

Meanwhile, cement quotas undermine rebuilding efforts: it would take 17 years to adequately rebuild infrastructure. Despite the fact of power shortages and poor healthcare infrastructure — 50% of Gazan hospitals were damaged in 2008/09 — 21% of medical permits to exit through the Eretz crossing are denied.

Engineered homelessness also adds to the deprivations: In 2014 alone, 18,000 Palestinian housing units were destroyed, and 108,000 Palestinians remain homeless.

Israel also breaches the Fourth Geneva Convention in terms of its treatment of Palestinian prisoners:

  • Whereas prisoners must not be detained outside the territory under occupation, Israel detains all Palestinian prisoners in Israel. There are 6,700 Palestinians in Israeli prisons, but there are no Israelis in Palestinian prisons.
  • Whereas prisoners are not to be subjected to torture, Palestinian prisoners are regularly tortured.  200 prisoners have been killed by torture, medical negligence, or the use of fatal force.
  • Whereas prisoners are not to be sentenced without a proper trial, since 2000, Israel has placed 20,000 Palestinians under administrative detention – without charge or trial.

The institutionalized racism, the war, the occupation, the imprisonment, and the intentional denial of human rights and freedoms takes a tremendous, sometimes hidden, toll. The United Nations (UN) estimates that about 370,000 children in Gaza require psycho-social support.

The totality of these imposed restrictions amounts to genocide:

The definition of “genocide”, as defined by Articles II and III of the 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide:

“Article II: In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group, as such:

(a) Killing members of the group;

(b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;

(c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;

(d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;

(e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.

Article III: The following acts shall be punishable:
(a) Genocide;

(b) Conspiracy to commit genocide;

(c) Direct and public incitement to commit genocide;

(d) Attempt to commit genocide;

(e) Complicity in genocide. ”

All of this illegality is an outgrowth of a racist settler-colonial dynamic where illegal discrimination is politicized. Political operatives have distorted and degraded the teachings of Judaism and Islam to the point that engineered religious facades are used as instruments of division to wage illegal war and genocide.

The duplicity of the Canadian government in condemning the BDS movement on the one hand, while publically stating on the other that Canada will be a frank voice in the Middle East” is a symbol of Canada’s duplicity.

The “perception management” wing of our military –industrial-media complex presents Canada in a favourable, judicious light; whereas sustainable evidence demonstrates that our foreign policy posturing conceals a deeply-rooted and degenerate criminality.

 

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Cruz Thinks That Egypt’s President El-Sisi is Doing a Great Job

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If we were unclear what kind president Ted Cruz would be if he won the race to the White House, his recent comments on who he considers a good role model leave little room for doubt.

The Texas Senator expressed his admiration for the Egyptian President, Zionist puppet Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, who has imprisoned thousands of journalists and protesters and has unleashed a brutal police force, as an “example” of a Muslim ally.

“Let me give you an example of a Muslim, for example, we ought to be standing with,” Think Progress reports Cruz said at a campaign rally in Miami. “President El-Sisi of Egypt, a president of a Muslim country who is targeting radical Islamic terrorists,” he added.

But Cruz is no fair-weather friend to the blood-stained El-Sisi, he mentioned his admiration for El-Sisi last year.

“Why don’t we see the president of the United States demonstrating that same courage [as El-Sisi] just to speak the truth about the face of evil we’re facing right now?” Cruz asked during the first Republican presidential debate last year.

In February, charges were dropped against a four-year-old in Egypt. He had been sentenced to life for four counts of murder, eight counts of attempted murder, vandalizing state property during protests in January 2014, when the boy was 16-months-old.

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President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker Damns Obama’s Plan for Ukraine

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Global Research
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Jean-Claude Juncker, the most powerful person in Europe, the chief of the European Commission and therefore Europe’s closest equivalent to America’s President, said, in a little-noticed comment on March 3rd, “Ukraine will definitely not be able to become a member of the EU in the next 20-25 years, and not of NATO either.” The article reporting this, at europeonline.magazine, also observed that, “The commission, the EU‘s executive, plays a leading role in accession negotiations between the bloc and aspiring members.”

The main reason why U.S. President Barack Obama had perpetrated his coup in Ukraine in February 2014, and why his CIA hired racist anti-Russian paramilitaries to carry it out as they did behind the cover of the popular anti-corruption “Maidan” demonstrations in Kiev, was in order to get Ukraine into NATO, so that U.S. missiles will be able to be placed near-enough to Moscow for a blitz-attack so as to conquer Russia. That would be America’s ultimate “regime-change” operation (toward which the regime-change in Ukraine is merely one of the most important steps); but the European Commission’s Jean-Claude Juncker has here said it’s not going to happen.

This isn’t only a reversal of what the EU had been promising to Ukraine’s government (especially promising to the post-coup government), but it’s also a drastic separation of Europe from America’s empire: a severe limitation of the control by the U.S. aristocracy, which has, ever since the time of U.S. President George Herbert Walker Bush, been executing his plan to strangulate Russia by surrounding it with NATO member-nations on Russia’s western borders, and so cutting off Russia’s major trading-partner (Europe), thus squeezing Russia’s economy until a regime-change can be carried out there like was done in Ukraine, ‘democratically’ instead of by an outright invasion of Russia. This way, the threat of a NATO blitz-attack won’t even need to be acted upon, and the world’s most resource-rich nation, Russia, can thus be added to the U.S. international-corporate fold without NATO needing first to attack Russia by any such super “Prompt Global Strike” — a PGS that can destroy Russia’s command-and-control within just a few minutes, instead of within an hour or even more.

Juncker is thus challenging the U.S. aristocracy here; he’s saying that GHW Bush’s plan isn’t going to go all the way. The U.S. aristocracy can benefit bysurging U.S. arms-sales that are generated from NATO’s expansions, but not into Ukraine.

As the representative of Europe’s aristocracies, Juncker is finally saying, to the U.S. aristocracy: You’re not going to control us entirely. We want to work with you on things such as TTIP, which will benefit the aristocracies of every participating nation; but, we’re not going to follow your lead regarding the conquest of Russia; we European aristocrats (the billionaires whom these government-officials represent) will instead pursue our own independent policies regarding Russia. We’re not going all the way with you on that.

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Imperialism via Data: The Digitization of Human Behavior

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“Social Radar”, Sensors and Neuroscience

Global Research
Brain

In 2007 I wrote and presented a conceptual paper to an international studies group in Portugal. The subject matter was, generally, the use of Evolutionary Cognitive Neuroscience (ECN) to manage humanity. That paper would eventually finds its way, remarkably, into Rebecca Costa’s seminal The Watchman’s Rattle.

I said back in 2007 that America’s ongoing obsession with national security and the enormous funding necessary to soothe a national psyche of fear and war was a key driver for enhancing security thereby eliminating the uncertainty of daily living. I suggested that ECN could generate predictive and diagnostic biotechnologies to reduce tension. Such a development could eliminate much uncertainty and concomitant drama in human affairs by providing leaders with assets to manage the complexities in brain-behavior relationships. To get there though, reliable data on human beings, as they function as interconnected consumers, warfighters, enemies, refugees, diplomats, criminals, and citizens of their respective nations would need to be collected and assessed.

I went on to say that a comprehensive knowledge base of planetary ecosystems and how humans interface with those ecosystems would have to be constructed and meshed with the findings of brain-behavior functions. The dissection of the individual and global organism may lead to unprecedented forecasting capability with the ultimate outcome the creation of biomachine systems that suggest procedures and diagnostics with which to anticipate and/or minimize a wide range of human problems. Biomachine tools might become available that could suggest courses of action such as military intervention, diplomacy, containment, stability and consequence management operations, economic aid, covert operations, etc. I also briefly mentioned that one of the dangers in such a pursuit would likely be the development of neuroweaponry.

In just under ten years, the topics alluded to in my 2007 paper have taken the form of four converging and accelerating movements that seem likely to usher in drastic change in the human condition: The digitization of human behavior; cracking open the brain through neuroscience; the engineering andmanipulation of human and non-human genomes; and the proliferation of the Internet of Things, which is code for the sensorization of the human/non-human, home, work, school, automobile, street, global commons, etc.

Is it any surprise that the Anthropocene is upon us?

What Happens Next?

Shoshana Zuboff, in the article, The Secrets of Surveillance Capitalism, thinks that humanity will become mentally displaced, perhaps disembodied, as behavior becomes totally predictable and free will vanishes.

The significance of behavioral surplus was quickly camouflaged, both at Google and eventually throughout the Internet industry, with labels like “digital exhaust,” “digital breadcrumbs,”…These euphemisms for behavioral surplus operate as ideological filters, in exactly the same way that the earliest maps of the North American continent labeled whole regions with terms like “heathens,” “infidels,” “idolaters,”  “primitives,” “vassals,” or “rebels.”  On the strength of those labels, native peoples, their places and claims, were erased from the invaders’ moral and legal equations, legitimating their acts of taking and breaking in the name of Church and Monarchy. We are the native peoples now whose tacit claims to self-determination have vanished from the maps of our own behavior. They are erased in an astonishing and audacious act of dispossession by surveillance that claims its right to ignore every boundary in its thirst for knowledge of and influence over the most detailed nuances of our behavior.  For those who wondered about the logical completion of the global processes of commodification, the answer is that they complete themselves in the dispossession of our intimate quotidian reality, now reborn as behavior to be monitored and modified, bought and sold.

Radar Love

Social Radar has been a goal of the government and business for some time.  Its applications are legion: Predictive behavioral algorithms to ensure consumers are directed to the right product to ensure steady profits; underlying predictive mathematical models that allow the military commander a quantitative, geospatial view of open or urban terrain with humans moving predictably like aircraft on an air traffic controller’s screen; and the creation of a predictive reality in which the masses believe they are “free”, but are, unknown to them, being behaviorally shaped for the larger system. These notions can be found in military doctrine and a host of academic and marketing organizations. It’s all there out in the open if anyone cares to look.

Consider The MITRE Corporation’s development of Social Radar. In Social Radar for Smart Power, Mark Maybury writes:

“Conventional radar requires signatures for different kinds of objects and events: it needs to be tuned to different environmental conditions to provide accurate and reliable information.  Analogously, a social radar needs signatures, calibration, and correlation to sense, if not forecast, a broad spectrum of phenomena (e.g., political, economic, social, environmental, health) and potentially forecast changing trends in population perceptions and behaviors.  For example, radar or sonar enable some degree of forecasting by tracking spatial and temporal patterns (e.g. they track and display how military objects or weather phenomena move in what clusters, in which direction(s) and at what speed.)  A user can thus project where and when objects will be in the future.  Similarly, a social radar should enable us to forecast who will cluster with whom in a network, where, and when in what kinds of relationships…Public Opinion Polling by Proxy (POP/P) [is] an exploration of the ability of social media (e.g., Twitter) to serve as a proxy for traditional opinion polling methods to overcome their latency, expense, and invasiveness.”

If We Kick the Ant Hill, Where will the Ants Go?

The US national security community’s dream is to have a Social Radar–like the one described above by Maybury—that would allow military commanders to lord over other countries. The Pentagon’s Sociocultural Behavior Research and Engineering in a Department of Defense Context contains this statement:

“Mastery would mean that U.S. forces would have the data on indigenous populations and the training they need to move easily in those populations; could see the parameters of culture and society and integrate those with conventional mapping of the physical terrain; could detect often complex and dynamic networks, where adversaries and civilian populations are intermingled; and would possess non-kinetic tools as well as the ability to anticipate both the near-term and long-term impacts of applying those tools.”

It’s easy to pick on the Pentagon on these matters, of course. But the insidious reality is that for profit, commercial enterprises with global reach—and the many lobbyists and non-profits who work on their behalf to distort regulatory regimes designed to oversee their activities—must modify human behavior in order to control/corner global markets, turn a profit and survive. These are the new colonialists who now brandish the US military as a tool for their own ends.

If Zuboff is correct, then Google–and corporations colluding with them or like them—are engaging in a type of intellectual property theft from unwitting customers. The thoughts, feelings, the sense of individual uniqueness of a human being (or his/her genetic structure) ultimately ends up getting copyrighted, trademarked or patented by corporations. It is the Internet of Sensors, Neuroscience, Genetic Engineering and the Digitization of Earth in the techno-dictatorial hands of corporate boardrooms and financiers that may well prove to be apocalyptic for all life on Earth.

Unfortunately the leadership of the dangerously privatized US military has become an extension of this techno-corporate collective and the governing civilians the collective owns. Indeed, so much so that US military leadership, while on “active duty”, emulates its mentors in the corporate world because (a.) rampant internal privatization has distorted the US military; and (b.) the private sector is where US military leaders long to be when it’s retirement time. It’s all about networking for the big payday in the private sector, or developing networking diagrams to see who the bad guys affiliate with in some remote corner of the African continent.

So it is no surprise that

“…the worldview that governs the U.S military’s approach…is one where populations are de-coded as networks. To see like the twenty-first century US military is to see a world of networks. This world of networks is a secular cosmological vision derivative from the human-machine assemblages where US military personnel and institutions are imbricated. These human-machine assemblages have been violently extended…through new technologies like iris-scan biometrics devices and data-base management…many new twenty-first century technologies, like big data mining and computational social network analysis, are rooted in colonial practices.” (The Afterlives of Counterinsurgency:  Postcolonialism, Military Social Science, and Afghanistan 2006-2012 by Oliver Christian Belcher)

Posted in USAComments Off on Imperialism via Data: The Digitization of Human Behavior

The CIA’s war on the mind

NOVANEWS

Image result for CIA CARTOON

  1. Watched the video…thanks. A bit more background would be helpful: when, where, context (were these monologues part of a broader conference or broadcast?)….

    Comment by roberthstiver | March 13, 2016 | Reply

    • There was a very short segment of the beginning video in which it mentions “Covert Action Information Bulletin”, and my own knowledge of technology puts it in the late 80s to early 90s. So with that in mind, I searched google for it, and you may want to check out https://archive.org/details/pdfy-xGyFKQCjORitMNOE for more. And search google as well, as there were quite a few other hits.

Posted in USAComments Off on The CIA’s war on the mind

The United States Is Led by Two Corrupt Establishments

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Global Research
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The United States is led by two corrupt establishments, one Democratic and one Republican, both deeply dependent on special-interest money, both sharing a similar perspective on world affairs, and both disdainful toward the American people who are treated as objects to be manipulated, not citizens to be respected.

There are, of course, differences. The Democrats are more liberal on social policy and favor a somewhat larger role of government in addressing the nation’s domestic problems. The Republicans embrace Ronald Reagan’s motto, “government is the problem,” except when they want the government to intervene on “moral” issues such as gay marriage and abortion.

But these two corrupt establishments are intertwined when it comes to important issues of trade, economics and foreign policy. Both are true believers in neo-liberal “free trade”; both coddle Wall Street (albeit seeking slightly different levels of regulation); and both favor interventionist foreign policies (only varying modestly in how the wars are sold to the public).

Because the two establishments have a chokehold on the mainstream media, they escape any meaningful accountability when they are wrong. Thus, their corruption is not just defined by the billions of special-interest dollars that they take in but in their deviations from the real world. The two establishments have created a fantasyland that all the Important People treat as real.

Which is why it has been somewhat amusing to watch establishment pundits pontificate about what must be done in their make-believe world – stopping “Russian aggression,” establishing “safe zones” in Syria, and fawning over noble “allies” like Saudi Arabia and Turkey – while growing legions of Americans have begun to see through these transparent fictions.

Though the candidacies of Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders have many flaws, there is still something encouraging about Americans listening to some of straight talk from both Trump and Sanders – and to watch the flailing reactions of their establishment rivals.

While it’s true Trump has made comments that are offensive and stupid, he also has dished out some truths that the GOP establishment simply won’t abide, such as noting President George W. Bush’s failure to protect the country from the 9/11 attacks and Bush’s deceptive case for invading Iraq. Trump’s rivals were flummoxed by his audacity, sputtering about his apostasy, but rank-and-file Republicans were up to handling the truth.

Trump violated another Republican taboo when he advocated that the U.S. government take an evenhanded position on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and even told pro-Israeli donors that they could not buy his support with donations. By contrast, other Republicans, such as Sen. Marco Rubio, were groveling for the handouts and advocating a U.S. foreign policy that could have been written by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Trump’s Israel heresy brought the Republican foreign-policy elite, the likes of William Kristol and other neoconservatives, to full battle stations. Kristol’s fellow co-founder of the neocon Project for the New American Century, Robert Kagan, was so apoplectic over Trump’s progress toward the GOP nomination that he announced that he would vote for Democrat Hillary Clinton.

Clinton’s Struggles

Clinton, however, has had her own struggles toward the nomination. Though her imposing war chest and machine-driven sense of inevitability scared off several potential big-name rivals, she has had her hands full with Sen. Bernie Sanders, a 74-year-old “democratic socialist” from Vermont. Sanders pulled off a stunning upset on Tuesday by narrowly winning Michigan.

While Sanders has largely finessed foreign policy issues – beyond noting that he opposed the Iraq War and Clinton voted for it – Sanders apparently found a winning issue in Michigan when he emphasized his rejection of trade deals while Clinton has mostly supported them. The same issue has worked well for Trump as he lambastes U.S. establishment leaders for negotiating bad deals.

What is notable about the “free trade” issue is that it has long been a consensus position of both the Republican and Democratic establishments. For years, anyone who questioned these deals was mocked as a know-nothing or a protectionist. All the smart money was on “free trade,” a signature issue of both the Bushes and the Clintons, praised by editorialists from The Wall Street Journal through The New York Times.

The fact that “free trade” – over the past two decades – has become a major factor in hollowing out of the middle class, especially across the industrial heartland of Middle America, was of little concern to the financial and other elites concentrated on the coasts. At election time, those “loser” Americans could be kept in line with appeals to social issues and patriotism, even as many faced borderline poverty, growing heroin addiction rates and shorter life spans.

Despite that suffering, the twin Republican/Democratic establishments romped merrily along. The GOP elite called for evermore tax cuts to benefit the rich; demanded “reform” of Social Security and Medicare, meaning reductions in benefits; and proposed more military spending on more interventions overseas. The Democrats were only slightly less unrealistic, negotiating a new trade deal with Asia and seeking a new Cold War with Russia.

Early in Campaign 2016, the expectations were that Republican voters would again get behind an establishment candidate like former Florida Jeb Bush or Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, while the Democrats would get in line behind Hillary Clinton’s coronation march.

TV pundits declared that there was no way that Donald Trump could win the GOP race, that his high early poll numbers would fade like a summer romance. Bernie Sanders was laughed at as a fringe “issue” candidate. But then something unexpected happened.

On the Republican side, blue-collar whites finally recognized how the GOP establishment had played them for suckers; they weren’t going to take it anymore. On the Democratic side, young voters, in particular, recognized how they had been dealt an extremely bad hand, stuck with massive student debt and unappealing job prospects.

So, on the GOP side, disaffected blue-collar whites rallied to Trump’s self-financed campaign and to his promises to renegotiate the trade deals and shut down illegal immigration; on the Democratic side, young voters joined Sanders’s call for a “political revolution.”

The two corrupt establishments were staggered. Yet, whether the populist anti-establishment insurrections can continue moving forward remains in doubt.

On the Democratic side, Clinton’s candidacy appears to have been saved because African-American voters know her better than Sanders and associate her with President Barack Obama. They’ve given her key support, especially in Southern states, but the Michigan result suggests that Clinton may have to delay her long-expected “pivot to the center” a bit longer.

On the Republican side, Trump’s brash style has driven many establishment favorites out of the race and has put Rubio on the ropes. If Rubio is knocked out – and if Ohio Gov. John Kasich remains an also-ran – then the establishment’s only alternative would be Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, a thoroughly disliked figure in the U.S. Senate. It’s become increasingly plausible that Trump could win the Republican nomination.

What a Trump victory would mean for the Republican Party is hard to assess. Is it even possible for the GOP establishment with its laissez-faire orthodoxy of tax cuts for the rich and trickle-down economics for everyone else to reconcile with Trump’s populist agenda of protecting Social Security and demanding revamped trade deals to restore American manufacturing?

Further, what would the neocons do? They now control the Republican Party’s foreign policy apparatus, which is tied to unconditional support for Israel and interventionism against Israel’s perceived enemies, from Syria’s Bashar al-Assad, to Iran, to Vladimir Putin’s Russia. Would they join Kagan in backing Hillary Clinton and trusting that she would be a reliable vessel for neocon desires?

And, if Clinton prevails against Sanders and does become the neocon “vessel,” where might the growing ranks of Democratic and Independent non-interventionists go? Will some side with Trump despite his ugly remarks about Mexicans and Muslims? Or will they reject both major parties, either voting for a third party or staying home?

Whatever happens, Official Washington’s twin corrupt establishments have been dealt an unexpected and potentially lasting punch.

Posted in USA1 Comment

Elizabeth May’s distorted understanding of crisis in Syria

NOVANEWS

Elizabeth May a3d9a

By Eva Bartlett

Canadian Green Party leader, Elizabeth May, puts forth such a distorted understanding of Syria that she has either fallen prey to the corporate media’s false rendition of Syria, or she is towing the line for political gain. In either case, the rhetoric she has employed over the past five years has gone from dismaying to appalling, considering that we are not in the early “confusing” months of the war on Syria, we are five years in, and the anti-Syria lexicon she repeats has long been discredited.

In June 2011, May’s Green Party described the situation in Syria as a “pro-democracy uprising,” and called for “more robust sanctions to include an international trade and energy embargo and not just sanctions against specific individuals and Syrian security organizations.”

Apparently the Iraq lesson—wherein 1.7 million Iraqis died as a “direct result of the genocidal sanctions” (source)—is not relevant to May. She would do well to read the Lancet’s report, “Syria: end sanctions and find a political solution to peace,” as of May 2015:

“The cost of basic food items has risen six-fold since 2010, although it varies regionally. With the exception of drugs for cancer and diabetes, Syria was 95 percent self-sufficient in terms of drug production before the war. This has virtually collapsed as have many hospitals and primary health-care centres.

Economic sanctions have not removed the President: … only civilians are in the line of fire, attested to by the dire state of household and macro-economies. Sanctions are among the biggest causes of suffering for the people of Syria.”

Perhaps May doesn’t care about the effects of sanctions on the Syrian people, but instead supports the US plan to destabilize Syria through various means, including sanctions, as noted even in 2005:

“As an alternative to direct military intervention to topple the Syrian government, the United States chose to pressure Damascus through sanctions and support for the internal Syrian opposition.”

As for the “pro-democracy uprising,” it has thoroughly been revealed to have been an armed insurrection from the very earliest protests, with sectarian chants and killings occurring by the so-called “democracy-loving” “unarmed” protesters from the very first months. The CIA has a long history of supporting such violence in Syria.  For more on this, and the mythology on Syria in general, see my extensively-linked earlier article, “Deconstructing the NATO Narrative on Syria.”

Vilifying Assad and Russia; Silence on Turkey, Sauds

In October 2015, after Russia had been invited by the Syrian government to fight terrorists in Syria, May issued a statementcondemning Russian airstrikes, stating bizarrely: “The bombing by Russian forces within Syria of rebel groups trained by the CIA under cover of a claim their target is ISIS brings into sharp relief the perils of air strikes against one rebel group in a civil war.”

She is upset that Russian strikes also target al-Qaeda terrorists in Syria, who she admits were CIA-trained? She continues with the “civil war” refrain?

Fellow Canadian and journalist Mark Taliano, in a January 2016 article noted:

“There are no “moderate” terrorists.  The mercenaries are all being paid and enabled by the West and its allies, including Turkey (a NATO member),Wahhabi Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Jordan.”

Later in the article, Taliano pointed out:

“Assad – … is defending his country from foreign terrorists, not “killing his own people” – the Western invaders arekilling Assad’s people.”

In a February 23, 2016 post, May again referred to Russia’s role in Syria, stating it is “legitimized by US and its allies own bombing campaigns”. Apparently May, a lawyer, misunderstood the legalities of both parties roles in Syria. The US-led coalition’s violations of Syrian airspace are in contradiction to international law. Russia’s presence, on the other hand, is not in violation of international law: Russia was invited by the Syrian government.

In the post, May on the one hand acknowledged that Western intervention in Iraq and Libya have been the cause of the subsequent chaos that continues to this day in those countries, while on the other hand still voiced lexicon and arguments which endorse intervention in Syria.

This is May’s (2016) nutshell interpretation of the war on Syria:

“Syria is a giant mess of competing nasty forces. The government (if one can still call it that) is run by a brutal dictator Bashar Al-Assad. Assad is supported by Iran and Hezbollah, while Al-Qaeda, al-Nusra, and ISIS want to over-turn Assad. Saudi Arabia is reported to be supporting ISIS. Russia supports Assad and is using its access to bombing, legitimized by US and its allies own bombing campaigns, to hit hard at Assad’s enemies – whether they are ISIS or not.”

Overlooking the childish terminology she employed, in the entire post, the only mention of the nefarious Saudi role in Syria is this one passing reference, of the Wahhabi kingdom being “reported to be supporting ISIS”. Why is May wilfully overlooking the deeply-entrenched role of the Saudis in funding, training, and brainwashing Wahhabi mercenaries to kill in Syria?

Regarding her, “Assad’s enemies—whether they are ISIS or not”— May seems to be attempting to convey that long-dead myth that there are “moderate” terrorist-rebels. The reality is that Russia and Syria are fighting Da’esh (ISIS), al-Nusra, FSA and any other terrorist factions warring against the Syrian state and people.

Further on in the post May disingenuously suggested, “We could do more to stop the flow of weapons and money to ISIS through its black market activities,” but again failed to mention Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, ‘Israel’ or the CIA ties to, and support of, ISIS and like terrorists.

By continuing (five years on) to claim the war on Syria is a “civil war” and its president a “brutal dictator”, May is feeding the line-of-logic that the only way to bring peace to Syria is the removal of its elected president and the supporting of Wahhabi-backed “opposition”—who themselves could not even come to an agreement to attend the last (Feb 2016) Geneva talks, which Syrian government representatives did, in contrast.

Following the collapse of those talks, Syria’s ambassador to the UN, Dr. Bashar al-Ja’afari, clearly explained that fault lay with the Saudis and their “opposition” puppets, and with the UN itself.

In a February 16 briefing, he explained that de Mistura had told the Ambassador he had “decided to suspend the talks because he knew earlier that the Riyadh group decided to withdraw from Geneva before even engaging in the indirect talks.”

In contrast, according to al-Ja’afari, “the delegation of the Syrian Arab Republic was the only delegation to engage twice with the special envoy. … We didn’t know how many delegations there should be there. We didn’t know the names. In the last couple hours before we left Geneva, the deputy of Mr. de Mistura came to me at the hotel and gave me a partial list of names, not the full list of names….” Yet the media blamed Syria, unsurprisingly, and not the Wahhabi “opposition”.

Secular Syria; Women-Strong

Bizarrely, May’s February 2016 post acknowledged that that Saddam Hussein’s Iraq was secular, its “cabinet included women and had no Islamist doctrine,” but failed to recognize that of secular Syria, whose leadership includes:

-Numerous women (including, but not all of): Vice President, Dr. Najah al-Attar, also Minister of Culture, a Sunni with a Western education and a PhD. Political and Media Advisor to the Syrian President, Dr. Bouthaina Shaaban, also Sunni and holding a PhD, Western-educated; former Minister of Tourism, Lamia Assi (also former Minister of Economy and Trade); Minister of Social Affairs, Rima al-Qadiri;former Minister of Social Affairs, Dr. Kinda al-Shammat.

-Sunnis (including, but not all of): Prime Minister, Dr. Wael al-Halqi; Foreign Minister, Walid Muallem; Minister of Defense Fahd Jassem al-Freij, Parliament Member Mohammad Jihad al-Laham.

Further, as Professor Tim Anderson noted:

“President Bashar al Assad himself is married to a Sunni woman. The Grand Mufti of Syria, Sheikh Ahmad Hassoun, is a strong Sunni supporter of the secular state. Sheikh Mohamad Al Bouti, murdered along with 42 others by an FSA suicide bomber in March 2013, was a senior Sunni Koranic scholar who backed the secular state.

Syria’s secular tradition is nowhere stronger than in the Syrian Arab Army. Making up about 80% of Syria’s armed forces and with half a million members, half regulars and half conscripts, the army is drawn from all the country’s communities (Sunni, Alawi, Shiia, Christian, Druze, Kurd, Armenian, etc). However they identify as ‘Syrian’ and ‘Arab’ and confront a sectarian enemy that brands itself ‘real Sunnis’.”

On the issue of women in Syria, Anderson explained:

“The Syrian Arab Republic was the first country in the Middle East and North African region (MENA) to give women the vote (1949, 1953) and the second after Lebanon to allow women to stand for election (1953). Syria was the first to have a woman elected to parliament (1973). Syria has by far the highest level of paid maternity leave in the MENA region – a minimum of 17 weeks paid leave, 100% paid by employers. Although one of the poorer MENA countries, the Syrian Arab Republic has a maternal mortality rate (per 1000,000 live births) of 46 in 2008, well below the MENA average (91); that is linked to skilled assistance at birth much higher than average (93% Syria / 79% MENA). In Syria, …‘women’s health adjusted life expectancy’ is the best in the MENA region (Sources: UNDP 2014; UN Women 2011).”

Journalist Julie Lévesque wrote on the US history of meddling and destroying women’s rights in Afghanistan, and their attempts to do so now in Syria. She cited a (2013) US State Department conference in Qatar (of all places) promoting “women’s rights,” hosted by the Women’s Democracy Network (WDN), which Lévesque points out “is an initiative of the International Republican Institute, well-known for supporting dissidents in various countries defying US imperialism.”

On the US meddling in Syria, she wrote:

“…the US along with Qatar and Saudi Arabia is supporting Islamist extremist groups fighting against the secular Syrian government. Some so-called “liberated areas” in Syria are now run by religious extremists.

…Were a US proxy regime to be installed in Damascus, the rights and liberties of Syrian women might well be following the same “freedom-threatening path” as that of Afghan women under the US-backed Taliban regime and continuing under the US-NATO occupation.”

Doh, Canada! Supporting Terrorism in Syria

In March 2016, May at least issued a statement against Canada’s “military contributions against Daesh (ISIL) in Iraq and Syria.” She also said, “We need to work with our international partners to cut off Daesh’s funding.”

Yet no mention was made of the gigantic elephants in the room: Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey, ‘Israel’ and the CIA, among other US departments. Further, Da’esh are but one of numerous foreign terrorist factions warring on Syria.

Nor was any mention made of the fact that since the beginning of the war on Syria, Canada has been funding and abetting terrorists in Syria.

Ken Stone’s detailed November 2015 article explains the manifold ways Canada has aided terrorists in Syria, as well as the attempt at “regime change”, including:

  1. “organizing the covert mercenary war against Syria through the Group of Friends of the Syrian People (“Friends of Syria Group”);
  2. establishing a regime of economic sanctions against Syria and hosting, in Ottawa, the Friends of Syria Group’s International Working Group on Sanctions;
  3. funding and supporting the so-called “rebel” side;
  4. planning for an overt western military action against Syria;
  5. working with Syrian-Canadians antagonistic to the Assad government;
  6. contributing to the demonization of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and to the de-legitimation and isolation of his government.”

With regard to Canada-Saudi relations (which May never seems to address), journalist Stephen Gowans wrote:

“To claim that Canada’s intervention against the violent Sunni Muslim fundamentalists is motivated by opposition to the organization’s barbarity is a demagogic sham. ISIS is virtually indistinguishable in the cruelty of its methods and harshness of its ideology from Saudi Arabia, which Canada strongly supports. If Ottawa truly abhorred ISIS’s vicious anti-Shia sectarianism, cruel misogyny, benighted religious practices, and penchant for beheadings, CF-18s would be bombing Riyadh, in addition to ISIS positions. Instead, Saudi Arabia, a theocratic absolutist monarchy, one of the last on earth, continues to receive Canada’s undiminished support.”

Stop The NATO-Speak, Stop The War Propaganda

Although Elizabeth May purports an anti-war stance, her puerile NATO-esque rhetoric serves the war agenda. This rhetoric includes:

-Demonizing a government that the vast majority of the Syrian people support, with infantile and tired, incredibly loaded, rhetoric;

-Endorsing criminal sanctions which only hurt the Syrian people;

-Continued lack of any condemnation of the Gulf, Turkish and ‘Israeli’ roles in creating, supporting, funnelling, andtreating terrorists and sending them back into Syria;

-Her refusal to acknowledge the will of the Syrian people—which is overwhelmingly that they want President al-Assad to remain, they want the NATO alliance to stop sending terrorists into Syria, they want their sovereignty and an end to the foreign war on Syria which May to this day insists on wrongly calling a ‘civil war’.

In employing the lexicon of the NATO axis’ propagandists, May is potentially more dangerous to Canadians than easily detestable politicians like Harper, Trudeau or Kinney, who are overtly supportive of the war on Syria. She is slyly misleading those Canadians less-versed on Syria into believing the same stereotypes and myths that confused many in the early months of 2011 but which have now been laid to rest. It’s time May lays her rhetoric to rest, and grows a political spine.

Posted in Canada, SyriaComments Off on Elizabeth May’s distorted understanding of crisis in Syria

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