Happy Birthday, Patti Smith!
The way I see it 2015 will ring in either the wake-up call we've all been awaiting since the election of our non-progressive nightmare in 2008 or the final death knell of representative democracy in the United States of America.
And there is nothing that can be done about it at this point in history (as the rise of Jeb Bush as a serious candidate for the Republicans proves (not to mention Hillary Clinton as the other choice)). (If a largely turned-off or apathetic out of political PTSD population doesn't get involved in an organizational effort that leaves the one trying to end the Vietnam War in the dusty tracks of history.) And I do think that the only changes that will make any difference have to come from the citizens and not from the political apparatuses.
The forces that control the power (and money) that have been driving the U.S. (and the rest of what is thought of as the "civilized" west) over the cliff as quickly as possible prepared this dream scenario of their ultimate conquest long ago (see PNAC history here, here , here and here) and had planned for it to have been over after the quick fall of Iraq (if only things had gone according to their initial victory time table).
And don't forget that the administrations of both George W. Bush and Obama cut the health care budgets for those injured in these continuing wars. They both have depended and planned for a desperate lower/middle class to provide the muscle and taxes needed for this new American superstate.
Now, when the Christmastime TV screens are bleeding with ads about wounded veterans in need of donations from unwounded (so to speak) citizens, we are reaping the final scenes brought to us by the decades-ago sneaking of the dead and mangled bodies back into the country that began under George W. Bush's regime.
Of course. This might all be just more sordid fantasy from those fruitcakes and nuts who want to see the U.S. pursue a peaceful 21st century agenda.
And the next speech we hear from the Obama administration could have a reasonable, easily-agreed-to-by-all-parties plan for taxing those who have benefitted from the tax cuts under George W. Bush, which will guarantee for generations the benefits needed by the lower and middle classes in order to survive with some power and influence in the years ahead.
But don't let reality startle you overmuch as you entertain visions of lollipops and sunshiny days to come.
Dear Readers: The conflict that Washington has initiated between the West and Russia/China is reckless and irresponsible. Nuclear war could be the outcome. Indeed, Washington has been preparing for nuclear war since the George W. Bush regime.
Washington has revised US war doctrine in order to initiate conflict with a first strike nuclear attack.
Washington has discarded the ABM treaty in order to build and deploy anti-ballistic missiles that are intended to prevent a retaliatory strike against the US. Washington is engaged in a buildup of military forces on Russia’s borders, and Washington is demonizing Russia’s government with false charges.
As the Bush/Obama regimes dismantled the safeguards put in place in order to minimize the risk of nuclear war, no protests came from the American public or the media. Washington’s European vassal states have also been silent.
Washington’s drive for hegemony has brought nuclear insanity to the world.
Moscow and Beijing understand that they are Washington’s targets. As Larchmonter explains, Russia and China are conjoining their economic and military capabilities in order to protect against Washington’s attack. Read what Larchmonter reports. Open the URL in my column below and run your cursor over the bottom of the page and click “page fit.” Choose 50% and readable text will fill your screen.
Washington’s demonization of Saddam Hussein, Gaddafi, and Assad were preludes to military attacks on Iraq, Libya, and Syria. In view of these precedents, it is reasonable to regard Washington’s demonization of Vladimir Putin as a prelude to military action.
Russia is not Iraq, Libya, or Syria. Russian war doctrine states that Russia can use nuclear weapons in response to a nuclear or conventional attack on Russia. For the world to sit silent while Washington’s arrogance provokes armageddon telegraphs total political failure. Where are the voices in behalf of humanity?
December 29, 2014
Washington has shaped 2015 to be a year of conflict. The conflict could be intense.
Washington is the cause of the conflict, which has been brewing for some time. Russia was too weak to do anything about it when the Clinton regime pushed NATO to Russia’s borders and illegally attacked Yugoslavia, breaking the country into small easily controlled pieces.
Russia was also too weak to do anything about it when the George W. Bush regime withdrew from the ABM treaty and undertook to locate anti-ballistic missile bases on Russia’s borders. Washington lied to Moscow that the purpose of the ABM bases is to protect Europe from non-existent Iranian nuclear ICBMs. However, Moscow understood that the purpose of the ABM bases is to degrade Russia’s nuclear deterrent, thereby enhancing Washington’s ability to coerce Russia into agreements that compromise Russian sovereignty.
By summer 2008 Russian power had returned. On Washington’s orders, the US and Israeli trained and equipped Georgian army attacked the breakaway republic of South Ossetia during the early hours of August 8, killing Russian peacekeepers and civilian population. Units of the Russian military instantly responded and within a few hours the American trained and equipped Georgian army was routed and defeated. Georgia was in Russia’s hands again, where the province had resided during the 19th and 20th centuries.
Putin should have hung Mikheil Saakashvili, the American puppet installed as president of Georgia by the Washington-instigated “Rose Revolution”, and reincorporated Georgia into the Russian Federation. Instead, in a strategic error, Russia withdrew its forces, leaving Washington’s puppet regime in place to cause future trouble for Russia. Washington is pushing hard to incorporate Georgia into NATO, thus adding more US military bases on Russia’s border. However, at the time, Moscow thought Europe to be more independent of Washington than it is and relied on good relations with Europe to keep American bases out of Georgia.
Today the Russian government no longer has any illusion that Europe is capable of an independent foreign policy. Russian President Vladimir Putin has stated publicly that Russia has learned that diplomacy with Europe is pointless, because European politicians represent Washington’s interest, not Europe’s. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov recently acknowledged that Europe’s Captive Nation status has made it clear to Russia that Russian goodwill gestures are unable to produce diplomatic results.
With Moscow’s delusion shattered that diplomacy with the West can produce peaceful solutions, reality has set in, reinforced by the demonization of Vladimir Putin by Washington and its vassal states. Hillary Clinton called Putin the new Hitler.
While Washington incorporates former constituent parts of the Russian and Soviet empires into its own empire and bombs seven countries, Washington claims that Putin is militarily aggressive and intends to reconstitute the Soviet empire. Washington arms the neo-nazi regime Obama established in Ukraine, while erroneously claiming that Putin has invaded and annexed Ukrainian provinces. All of these blatant lies are echoed repeatedly by the Western presstitutes. Not even Hitler had such a compliant media as Washington has.
Every diplomatic effort by Russia has been blocked by Washington and has come to naught. So now Russia has been forced by reality to update its military doctrine. The new doctrine approved on December 26 states that the US and NATO comprise a major military threat to the existence of Russia as a sovereign independent country.
The Russian document cites Washington’s war doctrine of pre-emptive nuclear attack, deployment of anti-ballistic missiles, buildup of NATO forces, and intent to deploy weapons in space as clear indications that Washington is preparing to attack Russia.
Washington is also conducting economic and political warfare against Russia, attempting to destabilize the economy with economic sanctions and attacks on the ruble. The Russian document acknowledges that Russia faces Western threats of regime change achieved through “actions aimed at violent change of the Russian constitutional order, destabilization of the political and social environment, and disorganization of the functioning of governmental bodies, crucial civilian and military facilities and informational infrastructure of Russia.” Foreign financed NGOs and foreign owned Russian media are tools in Washington’s hands for destabilizing Russia.
Washington’s reckless aggressive policy against Russia has resurrected the nuclear arms race. Russia is developing two new ICBM systems and in 2016 will deploy a weapons system designed to negate the US anti-ballistic missile system. In short, the evil warmongers that rule in Washington have set the world on the path to nuclear armageddon.
The Russian and Chinese governments both understand that their existence is threatened by Washington’s hegemonic ambitions. Larchmonter reports that in order to defeat Washington’s plans to marginalize both countries, the Russian and Chinese governments have decided to unify their economies into one and to conjoin their military commands. Henceforth, Russia and China move together on the economic and military fronts. http://www.mediafire.com/view/08rzue8ffism94t/China-
The unity of the Bear and the Dragon reduces the crazed neoconservatives’ dream of “an American century” to dangerous nonsense. As Larchmonter puts it, “The US and NATO would need Michael the Archangel to defeat China-Russia, and from all signs Michael the Archangel is aligned with the Bear and its Orthodox culture. There is no weapon, no strategy, no tactic conceivable in the near future to damage either of these rising economies now that they are ‘base pairs.’”
Larchmonter sees hope in the new geopolitics created by the conjoining of Russia and China. I don’t dispute this, but if the arrogant neoconservatives realize that their hegemonic policy has created a foe over which Washington cannot prevail, they will push for a pre-emptive nuclear strike before the Russian-Chinese unified command is fully operational. To forestall a sneak attack, Russia and China should operate on full nuclear alert.
The US economy–indeed the entire Western orientated economy from Japan to Europe–is a house of cards. Since the economic downturn began seven years ago, the entirety of Western economic policy has been diverted to the support of a few over-sized banks, sovereign debt, and the US dollar. Consequently, the economies themselves and the ability of populations to cope have deteriorated.
The financial markets are based on manipulation, not on fundamentals. The manipulation is untenable. With debt exploding, negative real interest rates make no sense. With real consumer incomes, real consumer credit, and real retail sales stagnant or falling, the stock market is a bubble.
With Russia, China, and other countries moving away from the use of the dollar to settle international accounts, with Russia developing an alternative to the SWIFT financial network, the BRICS developing alternatives to the IMF and World Bank, and with other parts of the world developing their own credit card and Internet systems, the US dollar, along with the Japanese and European currencies that are being printed in order to support the dollar’s exchange value, could experience a dramatic drop in exchange value, which would make the import-dependent Western world dysfunctional.
In my opinion, it took the Russians and Chinese too long to comprehend the evil that has control in Washington. Therefore, both countries risk nuclear attack prior to the full operational capability of their conjoined defense. As the Western economy is a house of cards, Russia and China could collapse the Western economy before the neoconservatives can drive the world to war. As Washington’s aggression against both countries is crystal clear, Russia and China have every right to the following defensive measures.
As the US and EU are conducting economic warfare against Russia, Russia could claim that by wrecking the Russian economy the West has deprived Russia of the ability to repay loans to the European banks. If this does not bring down the thinly capitalized EU banks, Russia can announce that as NATO countries are now officially recognized by Russian war doctrine as an enemy of the Russian state, Russia can no longer support NATO’s aggression against Russia by selling natural gas to NATO members. If the shutdown of much of European industry, rapidly rising rates of unemployment, and bank failures do not result in the dissolution of NATO and thus the end of the threat, the Chinese can act.
The Chinese hold a very large amount of dollar-denominated financial assets. Just as the Federal Reserve’s agents, the bullion banks, dump massive shorts onto the bullion futures markets during periods of little activity in order to drive down the bullion price, China can dump the equivalent in US Treasuries of years of Quantitative Easing in a few minutes. If the Federal Reserve quickly creates dollars with which to purchase the enormous quantity of Treasuries so that the financial house of cards does not implode, the Chinese can then dump the dollars that they are paid for the bonds in the currency market. Whereas the Federal Reserve can print dollars with which to purchase the Treasuries, the Fed cannot print foreign currencies with which to buy the dollars.
The dollar would collapse, and with it the power of the Hegemon. The war would be over without a shot or missile fired.
In my view, Russia and China owe it to the world to prevent the nuclear war intended by the neoconservatives simply by replying in kind to Washington’s economic warfare. Russia and China hold all the cards. Not Washington.
Russia and China should give no warning. They should just act. Indeed, instead of step by step, Russia and China could simultaneously use the counter-measures. With four US banks holding derivatives totaling many times world GDP, the financial explosion would be the equivalent to a nuclear one. The US and Europe would be finished, and the world would be saved.
Larchmonter possibly is correct. 2015 could be a very good year, but pre-emptive economic moves by Moscow and Beijing could be required. Putin’s current plan seems to be to turn away from the West, ignore the provocations, and mesh Russia’s strategic and economic interests with those of Asia. This is a humane and reasonable course of action, but it leaves the West untroubled and undistracted by its economic vulnerabilities. An untroubled West remains a grave danger not only to Russia and China but also to Americans and the entire world.
(Dr. Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Economic Policy and associate editor of the "Wall Street Journal." He was columnist for Business Week, Scripps Howard News Service, and Creators Syndicate. He has had many university appointments. His internet columns have attracted a worldwide following. Roberts' latest books are The Failure of Laissez Faire Capitalism and Economic Dissolution of the West and How America Was Lost.)
And believe it or not.
The following news article was casually published in the pages of the national paper-of-record on December 10, 2014.
And most people (it would seem) pretended that it made sense and then ignored it. Or something. After all, it was in the New York Times. The same paper which made its reputation from courageously publishing the Pentagon Papers. (Or so we thought - see WhoWhatWhy on the hidden history of this event.)
No mass revulsion began.
And life rolled on (for a while) for the citizens of the indispensable nation.
from the New York Times:
The ciasavedlives.com website was organized by Bill Harlow, the C.I.A.’s director of public affairs from 1997 to 2004, who still acts as a spokesman for George J. Tenet, the C.I.A. director when the interrogation program began.Bill Harlow told the CIA’s most blatant lie about Iraq and weapons of mass destruction, just weeks before the U.S. invaded in March, 2003. Here’s what happened:
“Our concern is that right now people are reporting the Feinstein report as if it’s true,” Mr. Harlow said. “We don’t think it’s true.”
By the end of February, 2003, the U.S. case for war with Iraq was disintegrating. That February 15th had seen demonstrations of millions across the world in the biggest antiwar rallies in human history; the British parliament was showing signs it might vote against participating in the invasion; and most crucially, the UN had found no trace of WMD in Iraq.
At that point Newsweek published what was, to the Bush administration and CIA, the most terrifying story possible – that Iraq likely had no WMD, and the United States knew it.
What Newsweek revealed was that in 1995, when Hussein Kamel – Saddam’s son-in-law and head of Iraq’s WMD programs – had defected to Jordan, he told the UN, CIA and British intelligence that in fact Iraq had no WMD left.
According to Newsweek, "The CIA did not respond to a request for comment.” But the story quickly gained traction online, and when Reuters followed up on the Newsweek story, they went to Bill Harlow:
The CIA on Monday denied a Newsweek magazine report that Saddam Hussein's son-in-law told the U.S. intelligence agency in 1995 that Iraq after the Gulf War destroyed all its chemical and biological weapons and missiles to deliver them. "It is incorrect, bogus, wrong, untrue," CIA spokesman Bill Harlow said of the Newsweek report's allegations that Hussein Kamel told the CIA that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein had destroyed all of his weapons of mass destruction.Newsweek said Kamel, who headed Iraq's nuclear, chemical, biological and missile programs for 10 years, told CIA and British intelligence officers and U.N. inspectors in the summer of 1995 that Iraq had destroyed all its chemical and biological weapons stockpiles after the 1991 Gulf War."We've checked back and he didn't say this," a British government source told Reuters. "He said just the opposite, that the WMD program was alive and kicking."Harlow of the CIA said: "Newsweek failed to ask us this question.”There’s absolutely no ambiguity here; Harlow was lying through his teeth. He wasn’t addressing what Iraq was doing in 2003, or even whether what Hussein Kamel had said in 1995 was true. Rather, he was simply addressing what Kamel said, something that the CIA knew with 100% certainty.
But don't take my word for it. The notes from Kamel's debriefing are now online, and anyone with an internet connection can see for themselves:
Bill Harlow is a liar, and nothing he says should be believed.
P.S. It wasn't just Bill Harlow who lied about Hussein Kamel. Dick Cheney also lied about him in his biggest pre-war speech, claiming that Kamel had said that Saddam had "resumed his efforts to acquire nuclear weapons," when in fact Kamel had said exactly the opposite.
P.P.S. Weirdly, Harlow wrote a pretty good thriller in 1999 about terrorists trying to hijack a plane and crash it into the Knesset in Israel.
UPDATE: Newsweek has published a story about CIASavedLives.com which mentions Harlow:
"The former CIA officials behind the site include Bill Harlow, a top CIA spokesperson during the George W. Bush administration..."
Unfortunately, there's so little institutional memory at media outlets now that there's no mention of the fact that Harlow lied about what should have been one of the most important stories in Newsweek's history.
Posted at December 10, 2014