Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
May 08, 2018

Trump Ends The Nuclear Deal With Iran - What's Next?

With a very belligerent speech Trump nixed the nuclear deal with Iran. He also lied a lot in it. Neither is a surprise. The United States only keeps agreements as long as they are to its short term advantage - just ask native Americans. One can never count on the U.S. to keep its word.

Trump will reimpose U.S. sanctions on Iran because:

  • The nuclear deal was negotiated by the Obama administration and thus must be bad;
  • Israel wants to keep Iran as the boogeyman;
  • the Zionists and right wing nuts in the U.S. want the U.S. to attack Iran;
  • MAGA - Trump needs Iran as enemy of the Gulf states to sell more U.S. weapons.

Three European countries, Britain, France and Germany, were naive enough to think they could prevent this. The EU3 offered the U.S. to put additional sanctions on Iran for other pretended reason - ballistic missiles and the Iranian engagement in Syria. I was disgusted when I first read of the plan. It was obvious from the beginning that it  would only discredit these countries AND fail.

Luckily Italy and some eastern European countries shot the effort down at the EU level. They were not willing to sacrifice their credibility over the issue. The nuclear agreement was signed and should be followed by all sides. They pointed out that there was no guarantee from Trump that any additional European effort would change his view.

Over the last weeks some last EU3 attempts to influence Trump were made. They were in vain:

On Friday, Pompeo organized a conference call with his three European counterparts. Sources who were briefed on the call told me Pompeo thanked the E3 for the efforts they had made since January to come up with a formula that will convince Trump not to pull out of the nuclear deal — but made it clear the President wants to take a different direction.
...
After Trump's statement, the European powers want to issue a joint statement which will make it clear they are staying in the Iran deal in an attempt to prevent its collapse.

The sanctions Trump will reintroduce are not just limiting U.S. dealings with Iran, but will also penalize other countries. That will lead to a flurry of protective measures as at least some of those other countries will limit their exposure to U.S. rules and may even introduce counter sanctions:

“We are working on plans to protect the interests of European companies” Maja Kocijancic, EU spokeswoman for foreign affairs, told reporters in Brussel.

Iran will largely stick to the nuclear deal if the EU effectively defends it and does not hinder Iranian deals with European companies. If the EU fails to do so the nuclear agreement will be null and void. Iran will leave the deal. The neoliberal Rouhani government that agreed to the deal will fall and the conservatives will be back. They will defend Iran's sovereignty at all costs.

The U.S. seems to believe it can go back to the same position Obama had build up in the years before the nuclear deal. Iran was under UN sanctions and all countries, including China and Russia, held them up. The Iranian economy was in serious trouble. It needed to negotiate a way out. That situation will not come back.

U.S. credibility has been seriously damaged. Its soft power is gone. Its hard power has shown to be inadequate in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria.

China and Russia are both making huge deals with Iran and are now effectively its protectors. While they have no common ideology all three oppose a globalized world under exclusive "western" rules. They have the economic power, the population and resources to do so. Neither the U.S. nor Europe has come to terms with that.

Iran has not only new allies but gained in the Middle East because of U.S., Israeli and Saudi stupidity. The wars on Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen have all strengthened Iran's position while it largely kept largely out of them. The recent election in Lebanon went well for the 'resistance' camp. Within Lebanon Hizbullah can no longer be challenged. The upcoming elections in Iraq will result in another Iran-friendly government. The Syrian army is winning the war waged against the country. The U.S. position in Afghanistan is hopeless. Saudi Arabia is now in a fight with the UAE over the war on Yemen. The GCC spat with Qatar is still unsolved.

While Israel wants to keep Iran as a boogeyman to divert attention from its genocidal campaign against Palestinians, it does not want a large war. Hizbullah in Lebanon has enough missiles to make modern life in Israel untenable. A war on Iran could easily end up with Tel Aviv in flames.

There are some people in the Trump administration who will want to wage war on Iran. The Bush administration also had such plans. But any war gaming of a campaign against Iran ended badly for the U.S. and its allied states. The Gulf countries are extremely vulnerable. Their oil output could be shut down within days. That situation has not changed. The U.S. is now in a worse strategic position than it was after the invasion of Iraq. As long as somewhat sane people lead the Pentagon they will urge the White House not to launch such an endeavor.

The U.S. withdrawal from the nuclear deal is a huge mistake. Defense Secretary Mattis spoke against it. Will Trump make an even bigger mistake despite the opinion of his military advisors? Will he wage war on Iran?

Posted by b on May 8, 2018 at 02:21 PM | Permalink

Comments
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Personally, I think it is an ego trip by Trump to vanquish his predecessor and to see if he and he alone can push things around. He has been unable to get various agencies and people to follow his lead so this is a stunt to make him feel good.

Just how many more lies can the world take ? Israel must be losing credibility hourly for its lying in recent times. Surely it couldn't expect support from anyone now ? Surely they couldn't be so idiotic to start a war ...

What on earth should Kimbo in NK be thinking ? Pompeo is due there today !!

American diplomacy ...

Posted by: imoverit | May 8, 2018 7:08:17 PM | 101

I'm kinda suprised I have to do this at MoA, there have been other sites other 'discussions' with exceptionalists and zionists where I have felt obliged to refer to this article where Robert Fisk writes about Iran's alleged presence in Syria. Read the article if you are interested but here is a taste of what neolib interventionist and general imperial brown-nose says:

"The idea, by the way, that the Iranians dominate Syria is a myth, much repeated by Benjamin Netanyahu. Nor, I might add, are they terribly popular. On all my travels, I haven’t seen an Iranian on the Syrian front lines for more than a year."

While it has been gratifying to see b's work rewarded with a vastly increased readership, it does mean that the percentage of weak exceptionalists in drag, disordered types unable to distill their beliefs into a coherent view of the world and out and out actual agents of influence has also increased.
We see it today with the slimebags who are trying to divert attention away from amerikan duplicity and fraud by accusing other states of being hypocrites too.
I don't give a damn about other states, here and now is what we are discussing - whether or not amerika has once again deliberately broken its word out of short term self interest and the answer to that is yes.
Some of the personality disordered types who are earnestly attempting the impossible, that is to portray the weasel like actions of little donnie trump as a good thing will take this reaction to their ignorant ravings personally, but it isn't personal these types have been born with a weak will that has left them permanently impaired by 24/7/365 indoctrination. It isn't their fault that they are spineless, that was how they were born.

Aotearoa went through two decades of gutless hypocrites trying to arm twist succesive governments into not 100% honouring the Waitangi Treaty signed in 1840 by a majority of Tangata Whenua chieftains and the englander government which Aotearoa accepted as its foundation document when it was established as a sovereign nation in 1853 nearly 50 years before federation in Australia which is probably a reflection of the low value the englanders placed on Aotearoa as a target for resource theft.
Anyway Aotearoa has as many cowards as anywhere else, by cowards I mean low life types who rate fear of change a more important determinant of decision-making than justice or equity. Both the conservative and neolib political movements attempted to exploit the coward's fear to achieve political victory and both failed thanks to the staunchness & unity of Tangata Whenua and the simple fact that most long term whitefella settler whanau now have familial connections to at least one hapu.

One day amerikans will be forced to confront the evil perpetrated in their name but that is still a while off, plus it never happens in one hit. It took several centuries for Romans to acknowledge that they were not blessed with 'specialness' and whilst it took a lot less time for englanders to arrive at the same conclusion there are still drongo little englanders about - such as those who voted for brexit on the specious grounds they "wanted to put the great back into Great Britain".

It just isn't possible to cull the indoctrinated amerikans into sub-groups of the cowardly, the hypocritical and the greedy without expending too much energy on the worthless, so I for one am just going to ignore the grubby sooks from here on in.

Posted by: Debsisdead | May 8, 2018 7:11:33 PM | 102

On the CNN home page right now, the top Iran related story is a story on how this decision will affect oil prices. Prices are going up, which means fracking will be profitable again. Also good news for Russia, Saudi, Iran. Good also for USA's oil industry which acts through the GOP. Snippet from the story: "The Treasury Department said on Tuesday that sanctions targeting Iran's oil trade and energy industry will come with a six-month lag."

China is certainly going to continue buying Iranian oil, as will India. If Trump cannot coerce Europe into accepting new sanctions, that will be a pretty strong indication that American power is in trouble.

Posted by: Almand | May 8, 2018 7:37:10 PM | 103

This is beginning of the end. The neo-cons surrounding Trump want to replay the Kosovo war. Serbia surrendered without one American casualty. The insanity is that the world has turned upside down since 1999. Russia has reformed. The European Union’s austerity is depressing its economy. Joining the EU at the same time as Great Britain is leaving is not too smart. China is the second wealthiest nation in the world. Iran has withstood the American hybrid war since 1978. Any nation would be insane to take the USA at its word. The American Empire is splintering apart. Tonight the convicted coal baron Don Blankenship could win the Republican Senate nomination in the West Virginia. He exploits racism to point out to the Western middle class income has gone to China.
https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2014/01/the-story-of-globalization-in-1-graph/283342


History indicates that a hegemon like the Spanish Empire will inevitably tear itself apart. The question is will Europe see the light like South Korea just did and adjust to a multi-polar world? Will Homo sapiens, despite themselves, avoid an extinction event?

Posted by: VietnamVet | May 8, 2018 7:39:31 PM | 104

Zico @87

You have the history wrong. Putin went against the money men with Israeli passports in the mid 2000s. He was very clear: you can keep your money if you don't try to run the country or our politics. Those that wanted political power were either imprisoned (legitimately, they were crooks, Khodorofsky being the poster boy) or moved out of the country trying to establish a new "base" elsewhere (Berezofsky).

The CIA, the US Secretary of State and Treasury all played very large roles in insuring that the money men with Israeli passports "inherited" Russia's vast resource wealth. Putin stood up to their unified power and won, although this is blocked in western media. The people of Russia are hyper aware of all this, and they remain grateful to him.

You may want to take a look, too, at a more recent phenomenon.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5352661/Russian-billionaires-London-beg-Putin-return-home.html

Posted by: Castellio | May 8, 2018 8:11:17 PM | 105

Every time I think the US can't go any lower it finds another trap door to go lower.
Carl Jung when talking of the German people and the Nazis said 'what if again something goes (that) wrong with the Psyche?'.
It's happening again - this time in the US.

Posted by: AriusArmenian | May 8, 2018 8:49:25 PM | 106

This may be just a push by Trump for sanctions rather than war. Trump wants to export US fracked oil and gas. Oil and gas are I take it Iran's main export commodity. Get in a few hits for Israel and boost US fracking. If that is his aim, hopefully it will backfire bigly.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | May 8, 2018 8:49:43 PM | 107

Trump & Netenyahoo + one swine with it's nose rammed up the others backside.

Posted by: ross | May 8, 2018 9:10:49 PM | 108

b's argument is absolutely correct. Once again the United States puts another nail into its own coffin. China and Russia could not have asked for Trump to do more.
The question now is how long it will take European governments to throw off the Atlanticist straitjacket preventing them from cashing in on the vast opportunities that Eurasia offers them.
The bad news is that as the USA retreats from the rest of the world it will compensate by increasing its interventions in Latin America.

An explanation for American gambling might be this:
"I argue that in the current stand-off with Putin’s Russia, the West operates from a perspective inspired by the mentality of extreme risk-taking that stems from the dominant role of speculative finance in contemporary capitalism."
Prof. Kees van der Pijl In his article at Off Guardian today.

Posted by: bevin | May 8, 2018 9:11:33 PM | 109

No inflation ?
Really. No admitted inflation, same as unemployment is 3.9%.
If you can handle the truth, which if you're on MoA you should be able to,try
shadowstats.com for the un-fudged numbers.
Unemployment is really 22%+ if you measure it the way the govt.used to.
As for Iran, they dropped the petrodollar completely a couple of months ago.
Saddam and Gaddaffi found out really quick what that means,it means war.
The irony is to defend the petrodollar this time will finally bankrupt the USA.
Look at the demographics of Irans' 80 million population.A conventional war is impossible.
One last hurrah for Pax Americana.Exceptionally dumb.

Posted by: Winston | May 8, 2018 9:12:04 PM | 110

@102 go ahead and ignore me all you want, but don't think you can call someone a slimebag without inviting a proper response (your ad hominem was so eloqent debs!)

I'm a slimebag for calling out b's reference to native american land-treaty renigging for what reason exactly? For pointing out that there is a clear anti-american sentiment running through the greater-European-continental posters here?

"We're the World Police! Look at us! We pull all the strings! We fly all the sorties! No one else supports Israel!" Is that what you believe?

"I don't care about what other countries do..." Like Peter (both of you aussies, yes?), there is a subconscious urge to point out the obvious that America is the greatest source of technological brutality in the world. AD-FUCKING-NAUSEUM! I don't know if it has something to do with us saving your guys asses in WW2 or if you are so sickened by the treatment of your natives that you have to look to America and their atrocities to somehow reaffirm your mantra that "IT'S THE AMERICANS...AND NO ONE ELSE!" Where have I ever contradicted this claim of our brutality, other than mention that it is superflous as a comment because everyone that comes to MOA has already internalized this truth (and some even to the point of self-hatred).

Our country is being hallowed-out, lobotomized, and reconstructed to die for globalists who reside the world over though mostly in Washington, London, and Brussels. And you think that "One day..." there will be a reckoning? Maybe you haven't been keeping up on current events, bud, but the USofA ain't the shining city on the hill it used to be before the demon-scourge dug its nails into our scalp. I don't disagree that a lot of the population are already husks. I deal with the public day-in and day-out. But there is also the ongoing indoctrination of our youth, and one of the crux of this treatment is the simplification of OUR history (THE US) into mostly one bag: EVIL. Now if you need me to go ahead and spell out my worldview of the question of technology and the west, well, that might take all day. But suffice to say, the west as a whole has a very large problem. It does not belong solely to the US, nor to England, nor to Germany, nor to Australia. It belongs to us all. But if you think that for peace all the world needs is for Uncle Sambo to stand-down...well...you may be right...for a while. But like I told Peter, don't be surprised if the fundamentally-spiritual question of the direction of western culture rears its ugly-head to your surprised mug.

In the mean time, I will go back to downtrodden family-life in America whilst I interact with dullards and fools as our taxpayer money claims more lives in the greater MENA region. Please continue to judge us in all your snobbery.

Posted by: NemesisCalling | May 8, 2018 9:19:11 PM | 111

Regarding Putin folded because Medvedev is PM again and Netanyahu is guest of honour.

Let's revisit some basics.

A gas pipeline from EITHER side of the Straits of Hormuz is NOT in Russia's interest.

So who left to stop the pipeline from from Iran now that ISIS is more or less dead in Syria? Well good ole Netanyahu volunteered Israeli blood for this mission and for that, he gets due recognition from Putin.

I don't think The Saker is a very good analyst or has an understanding of how one actually runs a country. He can be said to be informed but the conclusions he draws can be very off the mark. Same for Helmer.

In China, The Shanghai Youth Group represented by Li Keqiang, well they have seen better days. So can they be just thrown aside just like that? Or rather can they be co-opted to a greater degree by Xi Jumping?

Likewise, can Medvedev group be further co-opted by Putin? Yes. This is realpolitik.

The Saker and Helmer best stay out of politics cos they sure would not get very far.

Posted by: ThatDamnGood | May 8, 2018 9:20:00 PM | 112

VietnamVet @104:

If its a replay of the Kosovo war, I sure hope China has a plan to protect it's embassy.

Posted by: Ian | May 8, 2018 9:21:02 PM | 113

@39 Paul

This article explains entirely the complexity of the geostrategic and domestic reasons for Russia-Israeli decent relations in spite of differences:

http://theduran.com/israels-netanyahu-to-be-guest-of-honour-at-russias-9th-may-victory-day-celebration/

Posted by: Loz | May 8, 2018 9:22:57 PM | 114

@ 84: Definitely, there's a point to be made. Someone, someday, will have to step up.


If there truly was a biblical old testament God, now's the time to destroy the evil empire and it's minions.

Posted by: ben | May 8, 2018 9:24:13 PM | 115

MoA just got entertaining again because of this new character that goes by the handle NemesisCalling...

"Maybe you haven't been keeping up on current events, bud, but the USofA ain't the shining city on the hill it used to be before the demon-scourge dug its nails into our scalp."

It once was?!

Posted by: ThatDamnGood | May 8, 2018 9:25:52 PM | 116

@94

Do you believe there is any difference in loyalty to Zionism between one and the other party that occupy the U.S. Congress? It's all about holding power. So the vassals for Zionism on the Dem side are trying to dethrone the newly-installed vassal emperor on the Republican side; big deal. Trump had bigger gifts for Zionism and Adelson bankrolled. 'Nuf said.

Everyone's man-god Trump fellated the Zionist donkey today with this Iran move. He praised the Netanyahoo dog and pony show on intelligence sneaked out of Iran by digital carrier pigeon. He declared Jerusalem the capital of Israel.

Trump is so up Netanyahoo's colon; he sees polyps. Never mind golden showers; Netanyahoo has more dirt on Trump than Putin and all the Russian oligarchy could dream of. That's why Zionism's advocate Dershbag has been on every Ziomedia outlet clearing Trump, dining with Trump, and feeding him legal strategy to get out of Mueller's crosshairs. Trump is Zionists' old boy.

Posted by: Circe | May 8, 2018 9:30:13 PM | 117

Winston @ 110 said:"As for Iran, they dropped the petrodollar completely a couple of months ago.
Saddam and Gaddaffi found out really quick what that means,it means war."

Yep, if not outright war, they'll destroy their economy..

Posted by: ben | May 8, 2018 9:31:32 PM | 118

@116 TDG

You haven't noticed that smell? Oh well. I guess you must live in the part of San Francisco that isn't covered with human waste.

Posted by: NemesisCalling | May 8, 2018 9:34:42 PM | 119

There is no doubt that, from its birth the US has specialised
in breaking treaties and agreements.
As someone pointed out above one of the basic reasons for the 1776 'revolution' was the Royal Proclamation of 1763 which prohibited colonists from 'buying' land or otherwise encroaching on the lands beyond the Allegheny mountain range. British motives in the matter are unimportant-suffice it to say that they wanted to minimise costs and undercut French alliances with the first nations- what is important is that the colonists were fixated on the quick money to be made by speculating in lands that they 'bought' from people who had no right to sell and then made their own by lynch law and genocide.
There is no doubt that other imperialists committed crimes at least as egregious but the point, which b makes, is that from the days before its birth the USA has made a habit of breaking treaties.
It is a record which Zionists have always regarded as a precedent (just as Hitler did when he set out to colonise Ukraine and Russia). Which is why it is always worth remembering.
The International Treaties-ratified by the US- against torture are another area in which US exceptionalism is currently being displayed.
Both are reasons why Nemesis is, indeed, calling.

Posted by: bevin | May 8, 2018 9:46:33 PM | 120

118
They never stopped trying, sanctions were never lifted,that's why they got off the petrodollar.
No coincidence that the petroyuan was launched on 3/26 in Shanghai.
Russia also made an agreement to buy Irans' oil bypassing the petrodollar around the same time.
I expect Iran to become a full member of the SCO this coming June meeting.
I also expect that an existing secret defense pact between Russia/China/Iran will be made
public.

Posted by: Winston | May 8, 2018 9:49:03 PM | 121

What I truly love about Mr. Trump is his ability to strip away the illusions of the American Empire as the "benefactor of the world". Never before have so many sophistries about the "exceptional policeman of the world" been destroyed in such a short period of time. He can always be counted on doing the wrong thing at the wrong time.

Great work, indeed! I am a fan, although not an admirer.

Posted by: Michael | May 8, 2018 9:53:51 PM | 122

Wow! Quite the Colorful thread. Must be the orange hair. Don't know if anyone bothered to read to the bottom of previous thread for my comments that anticipated Trump's idiocy(one person did provide a reply), so I'll post them again. The first has to do with that secret weapon Nuttyahoo mentioned:

"That "new weapon" is something no Zionist can defeat as it's psychological--Fearlessness in the face of Zionist provocations and undying faith in Zionism's eventual defeat. It's something Hezbollah was able to instill in its people and is spreading within Lebanon, and all Syrians are learning it too--this weapon's not restricted to just Shiites, but is multiconfessional. The same fearlessness is seen in Houthis. And many Iraqis learned how to use that weapon against the Outlaw US Empire's occupation. For a long time the unofficial slogan of Zionists and the Outlaw US Empire was: We don't care if they hate us just as long as the fear us. Well, fear has vanished from the formula--just look at Gazans!"

The second deals with Alastair Crooke's essay that also anticipates Trump's idiocy:

"Alastair Crooke asks: Is Israel Preparing For War? But then he delves into the new initiatives developed by China and Russia and the illgotten idea that there's no ideological component within those initiatives, which I've proven to be incorrect, to which Crooke agrees. Crooke sees the rise of those initiatives as indicative of the Outlaw US Empire's failures to achieve its goal--the implementation of the Yinon Plan--thus changing the regional dynamic/status quo: A change Zionists see as the existential threat. IMO, it makes no difference to Zionists if Trump stays or withdraws from JCPOA--the dynamic has already been altered in the negative as seen by Zionists, thus their desperation to return to status quo ante. However, by the Zionists's own admissions, they are incapable of winning the war they must wage, which is why they need the Outlaw US Empire to wage their war for them."

Very little changes with Trump's idiocy as the Outlaw US Empire never complied with the JCPOA to begin with, so the reneging on the deal has existed ever since the ink was applied to paper. As for what this means for any potential treaty with Korea, a Peace Treaty can be negotiated by North and South under the aegis of China, signed, the economic components implemented followed by the political aspects. The South can then just push the Imperial Stormtroopers off through its own legislation. Trump has embarked on the journey that will result in the Outlaw US Empire finally becoming an outcast nation--universally unloved and unwanted except by the Zionist settler state, no longer feared, just hated.

Posted by: karlof1 | May 8, 2018 10:06:45 PM | 123

i'm happy nemesiscalling is here and commenting.. i generally always enjoy their posts and i think the earlier post they made today made the thread more interesting. i think nc is wanting to include all the other western countries in the mix with that comment from b at the beginning (just ask native americans about treaties being broken).. i agree, no western colonized country has clean hands historically... i enjoy debs posts most of the time, but he can be like a grumpy old curmudgeon too. sometimes..

the fact is not only is the usa being torn apart, all of western society seems subject to this insane neo con, neo liberalism run amok.. canada as the loser country it is presently, takes all it's talking points from the usa.. i guess that is why i have such a hard time with where the usa is going at present and why i tend to lash out at the usa for all the stupidity - the country i live in is following in the same gutter... i would say the same for western europe, australia and new zealand too... not one of these countries has the ability of clarity to stand up to the usa's bullshit.. as a result - all are guilty of hubris and thinking that going along with the norm is something other then a recipe for disaster here.. it doesn't change much of where we are at this moment in time to say all this.. we need some leader who is capable of addressing it.. that leader seems to be putin more then anyone i can think of.. the west has a plethora of inept or worse leaders at this point in time.. trump definitely falls into this category too..

Posted by: james | May 8, 2018 10:13:53 PM | 124

@Rob 96
The U.S. government never seems to run short of funds for "defense" purposes.
The ignorant prattle about how the US wastes money on "entitlements," referring to the needy, when actually Social Security and Medicare are self-funded while the two billion a day wasted on the military is in fact considered as an entitlement for the military-industrial-congressional complex with money from the general fund which robs citizens of sufficient funding for education, transportation, health care etc.

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 8, 2018 10:23:05 PM | 125

b

Here is my take on it.

Trump and Kushner are running a payola scam. Kushner sets up a $2B US arms sale to KSA, Trump launches some cruise missiles, Congress approves the sale, and Kushner gets a 1% commish, which is standard for setting up these deals.

But Kushner needsa lotta commish if he's going to save 666 5th from default. So Kushner flies back between Tel Aviv and Riyadh, Netanyahu gets Jerusalem and KSA gets $70!crude, earning them an extra $220M a day in excess oil profits. And all Kushner had to do to get his $2M a DAY commish is get Uncle Donald to pull out of JCPOA.

I'm sure it's all money laundered a couple times through Trump Casinos, and Bibi is undoubtedly going to prevail over his indictments, just as Trump is going to prevail with Bolton, Pompeo and North.

Sick f'g world. Cheney's little Yellow Cake gambit cost Americans $1B a DAY in excess oil profits to KSA and the champagne flowed at Halliburton when they moved to UAE.

Anyway, Tehran and Pyongyang are too smart to get pulled in, and Congress is too venal and corrupt, so nothing will happen except the 'bicycling' of US Treasury funds from our hands into the private offshore tax havens.

A full century of oil and gas development has blown 100S OF TRILLIONS of wealth upon the American continent for a 100 years, more wealth than all the wealth of all the centuries before it, combined. Where did it disappear to?

E pluribus Work or Starve.

Posted by: Chipnik | May 8, 2018 10:25:03 PM | 126

I've heard it said that as the US declines in power and loses its world hegemony there will be mayhem everywhere without the wise US/UK hands to guide the masses. I don't believe it. Westerners don't understand Asians, where the growth is, for one thing. So the thought is that these people from the East will be as imperialistic as the West has been, once they get clearance to act badly. I don't believe that either. I've lived in the East and the fact is they ain't like the West. It's a fact.

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 8, 2018 10:35:54 PM | 127

Even though they revealed a ridiculous ability to misinterpret the simplest, most straight-forward post, the hourly recaps were less irritating than the tosh now being posted by the person who attempts to ape the lyrics of a song penned by that R Stones bloke. - To wit:
"I'm just sittin' on a fence
You can say I got no sense
Trying to make up my mind
Really is too horrifying
So I'm sittin on a fence"

Posted by: Debsisdead | May 8, 2018 10:36:46 PM | 128

WJ @52. Please tell us your suggestion that forcibly ethnically cleansing 6 million Palestinians from the land their ancestors have lived for more than 5,000 years would bring peace is actually a hysterical satire.

Posted by: Daniel | May 8, 2018 10:47:46 PM | 129

The amusing thing about Trump Russian collusion is that the oligarchs (specifically Blavatnik/Vekselberg) that bankrolled Trump's post election activities (not to mention the pre-election bankrolling we still don't know about) are Russian, second and Zionist FIRST. So really, Mueller is shaking the wrong tree. There's probably more Zionist collusion than Russian collusion in Trump's swampy dealings and his latest move on Iran is yet more proof that the Zionist American and Russian oligarchy are getting their money's worth. Oh and the little, hick redneck people in West Virginia and other hick villes who believe Trump cares a hoot about them and bought the con job, and who continuously vote against their best interests be damned. They all deserve the Trump oligarch fleecing. Ignorance ain't bliss; it's just plain stupid.

Posted by: Circe | May 8, 2018 10:48:08 PM | 130

@Don Bacon 125

Have you seen the work of Prof. Mark Skidmore at MSU? He is an economics professor specializing in government budgets. According to his analysis (all based on USG FOI obtained documents), U.S. military had a 2015 budget of $122 billion with unaccounted for spending of $6.5 TRILLION!

I have not seen any analysis refuting his claims. I can't understand why that information is not being used to reign in these psychopathic fucks. Yet we have a nation of people that think supporting a global military empire costs less than funding social services for 5% of the world population.

Posted by: Citizen621 | May 8, 2018 10:53:00 PM | 131

@ karlof1 who wrote:
"
Trump has embarked on the journey that will result in the Outlaw US Empire finally becoming an outcast nation--universally unloved and unwanted except by the Zionist settler state, no longer feared, just hated.
"

I think this is and has been the plan for Trump from the beginning. The faction behind Trump want to throw America under the bus using the guise of MAGA. I see the global elite as seeing the end of American fronted empire but wanting to end up in the transition meeting with ownership of all the hard assets and none/as-little-as-possible of the global debt overhang.

You and I will not be at the coming "Bretton Woods" transition type meeting but they or their representatives likely will be. The politics and agreements at that meeting (assuming it ever happens) will set the rules for the human experiment going forward.

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 8, 2018 10:58:16 PM | 132

@ Citizen621 131
The annual Pentagon budget is nearly $700 billion, a couple billion per day, and Trump is increasing it especially the ground force which the nation has no earthly need of.
. . .from the web on Skidmore:
On July 26, 2016, the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) issued a report “Army General Fund Adjustments Not Adequately Documented or Supported”. The report indicates that for fiscal year 2015 the Army failed to provide adequate support for $6.5 trillion in journal voucher adjustments.

I have no idea what this means.

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 8, 2018 11:06:44 PM | 133

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-05-08/peter-thiel-and-palantir-are-key-players-iran-deal

important article. Thiel's data churning was used by CIA to frame Iran with frightening possibilities. As the article states, when assumptions lack qualifiers, you end up jousting with shadows. Or put differently: Algorithms can produce any result, depending on the definitions. Which nobody asks about. Modern culture wars are all over definitions. They really set the scope of crime and punishment. Inquisition by Algorithm I call it.

The Jews want a new deal that involves inspections at Iran's military facilities, which are not included in the current agreement. Data picked up there will/could be factored into Thiel's assumption grinder to prove --some dark vision.

Posted by: mireille | May 8, 2018 11:21:24 PM | 134

@123 karlof1

Nicely said on all points.

Your Alastair Crooke article - yes I did see it at the end of the last thread and just read it. By the way, b links to it in his article here, not very explicitly, but he uses it to make the point that China and Russia are making huge deals with Iran and are now effectively its protectors.

I really like the two maps that Crooke uses to show the tremendously important geopolitical position that Iran occupies in the world geographically. These are a map that shows the 6 economic corridors of the Silk Road, and a map that redraws McKinder's world into 3 vertical areas, with a core of energy resource producers flanked by Europe and Asia to the west and east, respectively, as energy consumers.

The links to the maps, and the meaning of them as they pertain to Iran, are all in this quote:

Whether one looks at the bold, red, East-West swath of China’s massive ‘Road and Corridor’ sprawling across Eurasia (see here); or, look at Russia’s vertical, ‘McKinderesque’, heartland of energy producers (see here), stretching from the Arctic, through Russia to the Middle East, supplying the consumers to the East on one side and to the west, on the other, one thing stands out clearly: Iran, and the northern tier of the Middle East, lie smack in the middle of both maps. But just to be clear: these may be articulated as mainly trade and energy projects – but they are primordially political-cultural projects too.

These two visions – the Chinese map and the Russian – are complementary. One highlights resource influence, and the other, its flows and the concomitant economic fecundity likely to arise from the flow of energy and the ebb of manufactured goods along this corridor. In this northern sphere of the Middle East, it is Russia that has diplomatic and security ‘heft’ – and not America. In this northern tier, it is China that has economic and influence ‘heft’ – and not America.
- Is Israel Readying for War?

It doesn't matter much if the US leaves the Iran agreement, as others have commented. It is a further isolation of the US and that's a good thing. I think as Crooke explains, Israel knows it can't really fight Iran, but would scheme to draw the US into a war. I have serious doubts that the US would enter one, personally. As Crooke points out, Trump needs to win the mid-terms or the Democrats will impeach him - but whether this means staying out or plunging in, I can't say.

I am continually amazed at the US's ability to diminish itself, and Trump seems like a god-send for this. But it's not the US - Israel is similarly shrinking, and Europe. It's a function of the tides of history and hubris mixing in a King Canute kind of result, but I don't have the words at the moment to describe it further.

Posted by: Grieved | May 8, 2018 11:23:56 PM | 135

Fast Freddy @94.

Let me give you one example that should open the door for understanding the psyop that is MSM "war" against Trump.

Jeff Zucker was CEO of NBC (when it was fully owned by General Electric, one of the world's largest military contractors). Zucker gave Trump his very own Reality TV Show to bolster #theRealDonaldTrump's Brand nationwide. Though ratings dropped year after year, NBC kept pumping more and more assets in. And other MSM outlets covered Trump constantly, as they had been doing for decades already.

Later, Jeff Zucker became CEO of "the most trusted name in news.". CNN proceeded to break into programming to broadcast live Trump's escalator ride down into history where paid actors wearing Donald Trump/MAGA t-shirts cheered on demand. Trump's was the ONLY candidate announcement so treated.

Zucker's CNN (and the other major 'resistance" network, MSDNC) proceeded to broadcast live and uninterrupted every Trump rally, to discuss at length every Trump tweet and basically to suck all the oxygen out of every other candidate's coverage.

BTW: Uninterrupted is key because that meant NO ADVERTISEMENTS were sold. Hence, the official excuse that they did it for ratings was BS.

Bearing in mind that even before the campaign, at least 2/3 of USAmericans already said they didn't trust the MSM and hated the way MSM condescended to them and tried to direct their beliefs and actions, CNN and MSDNC ridiculed Trump... but more importantly, they ridiculed TRUMP SUPPORTERS!

Anyone who's taken Psych 101 knows how people would respond to that. Certainly the PR/Propaganda experts in MSM knew exactly what they were doing.... and have continued to do ever since the election.

Trump supporters today are making excuses for Trump's actions by claiming the MSM and DNC are cornering him into doing those things.

What would propaganda designed for people who already know the MSM is propaganda look like? One answer is exactly this.

Posted by: Daniel | May 8, 2018 11:27:07 PM | 136

@132 psychohistorian

I love that theory.

I'm starting to think events take longer than I assumed. There is indeed "a lot of ruin in a country" and I think it can take quite a while longer yet to drain all the asset ownership and vitality out of the US. The time period is quite a bit longer than Trump's term, I suspect. I think that the results of self-destruction that we're seeing now would be approximately the same if the Democrats ran the Congress with Clinton at the helm. The working dynamics would be the same.

I agree with your scenario but I ascribe it to the dynamics of greed and expendability working rather more without direction than with direction. And working not towards any specific goal, but even so, known by the players to be leading inexorably to an end.

In the same way that the too-big-to-fail banks didn't really care when the scheme went bust because they knew they had to be bailed out, the forces plundering and shriveling the US, I suspect, don't much care about timelines. When it goes bust, your new Bretton Woods has long been waiting in the wings, and is in no particular hurry.

Posted by: Grieved | May 8, 2018 11:51:26 PM | 137

The US is on the verge of sanctioning every other nation on the planet, guess Trump is more of a "Uniter" than Dubya.

Just as in the waning days of Obama, the Chinese made BHO descend out the back end of Air Force One, it would be awesome for honored guest Bibi, in Moscow on 5/9, to be conspicuously placed in an inferior position to other "honored" guests such as Hassan Nasrallah or Hassan Rouhani. It would never be broadcast in the USA, but the world would get the message.

Posted by: Enrico Malatesta | May 8, 2018 11:55:10 PM | 138

MAGA -- "Make America Grate Again"

Posted by: dunno | May 8, 2018 11:57:02 PM | 139

The Labor Force Participation Rate is a slightly better metric than “Unemployment Rate.” Currently, the US LFPR is 62.8%, ranking 10th in the world. Russia is 11th at 62.7%.

https://tradingeconomics.com/united-states/labor-force-participation-rate

Posted by: Daniel | May 8, 2018 11:58:37 PM | 140

For me, more appalling than US blatant belligerence and criminal intimidation is meek response of Iran or Russia, China to what was widely anticipated for months.

What they think they are doing is nothing but encouraging bully to escalate agression.

Is that not exactly the same attitude of Europe and Soviets leadership to raising of Hitler to power blatantly violating WWI Versailles Peace accord and INTERNATIONAL LAW as established by League of Nations step by step with no consequence whatsoever?

Tell me different!

Israel still bombing Syria, threatens Russian military at will while Netanyahu is in Moscow doing exactly what?

Strangely nobody here is much interested in that, even b.

Posted by: Kalen | May 9, 2018 12:03:16 AM | 141

Vietnam Vet @104,

Yours is a great comment.

Posted by: WJ | May 9, 2018 12:04:44 AM | 142

94

The US media attacks give plausible deniability of their complicity as megaphones (but they Big Lie banner 10x a day to compensate).

They also are code-talking to circle the wagons. We have learned to decipher it on MoA. More than anything, the Sinclair media are constantly stress positioning to rile up the AWGN base, until they pop off 26 mass murders like last year, which brings double-digit funding dollops to Totalitarian Police State.

That dulls by repetition the Never Trumps, until they're playing rope-a-dope and saying No mas! No mas! Then Trump moves US to Jerusalem. No mas! No mas! Then Trump cuts school lunch funding. No mas! No mas! Then Trump siphons $1.5T out of SS and MC. No mas! No mas!

The greatest Big Lie I see perpetrated in liberal political discourse is the Occum's Razor trope. "The least complicated reason (for some political event) is They are incompetent!"

In reality, the least complicated reason is the prols are dumb as *fuck*, the Chosen can hire as many quants as they need, the police are all paid off, and the Mafiya has gutted the US Treasury.

That's the Chicago Way.

Posted by: Chipnik | May 9, 2018 12:06:43 AM | 143

@ Grieved with his feedback on my "theory"...thanks

I think that the dynamics of greed and expendability that you write of is at a level down from the elite and their planners.

The brinksmanship that is being played now reeks of false bravado and chicken shit moves.

What I am intrigued by is the intertwining of private finance with the Israel situation with the Israel situation as the proxy. The global moves to reign in Israel war crimes are different but connected to the moves necessary to evolve from global private finance to totally sovereign finance. And all those pieces are in motion both in public and behind the scenes......I hope someone is taking notes......

Yes, events take longer than guessed regularly but what we see in front of us is certainly not going to take 5 years to culminate. We just don't know for sure how it will all work out but are liking the measured response of China and Russia seemingly towards the end I keep drumming about...replace private finance with public finance.

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 9, 2018 12:07:52 AM | 144

ThatDamnedGood @112. Many people downplay or deny that competing natural gas pipelines is one of the principle reasons for the “regime change” war against Syria (and likely the Saudi Arabia v. Qatar situation as well). But rarely do I see anyone recognize that Russia would see either route as competition. That has to play a part in Putin’s policies regarding Syria and Iran.

I do tend to believe that Putin regrets allowing Libya to fall, and he surely knows that Russia is in the crosshairs, so he has good reason to put a stopper in as the last of the MENA countries are sucked down the Oded Yinon drain. It can’t be good for Russia to lose its footholds there, and see the AZ Empire checkmate MENA resources.

Over the past 8 years, I have come to genuinely respect and like the Syrian people, and it breaks my heart to have to consider that their lives and future are likely being considered as bargaining chips in the realpolitik “Grand Chessboard” game being played by the AZ Empire and Russia.

Posted by: Daniel | May 9, 2018 12:12:20 AM | 145

bevin @120. Yep. I’d add that one George Washington apprenticed as a land surveyor. He married well, but had to work for a living in his younger years. He went over the summit of the Alleghany Mountains and surveyed land parcels with the intention of making a killing in real estate.

That’s probably why he volunteered to fight in the “French/Indian Wars” so England would gain control over all that real estate. Losing that war - and so access to that land - might have influenced him to dust off that uniform to fight against the army he’d fought for a decade earlier.

We might not know his thinking, but what the records show is that Georgie Boy was selling those land parcels DURING the “War for Independence.”

Posted by: Daniel | May 9, 2018 12:24:55 AM | 146

@bevin 120

Bonus points for, "Both are reasons why Nemesis is, indeed, calling"

But I'm afraid the day's prize for iceberg wit goes to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani:

Rouhani blasted Trump immediately after Tuesday's speech.

'Iran will be conferring with the world's two super powers, Russia and China,' he sniped, insisting that Trump's 'psychological war and economic pressures will not work.'

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5705517/Trump-pulls-U-S-Iran-deal-calling-DISASTER.html#ixzz5EyWKZMng

Posted by: Emily Dickinson | May 9, 2018 12:30:21 AM | 147

If Trump really wanted to renegotiate the Iran agreement, wouldn’t he pull out of the agreement (to show he was serious) but only threaten to impose harsh sanctions? Is there any practical advantage to immediately bringing down the ‘hammer’ of severe sanctions?

Could it be that he wanted to immediately confound Iran’s deal with Airbus? Is that reason enough or an excuse?

Posted by: Jackrabbit | May 9, 2018 12:45:41 AM | 148

@james #74 - Speaking of 'Canadian politicians with no character or backbone', here is our 'Left' parliamentary opposition No Difference Party (NDP) foreign affairs 'critic' hanging out with Al Qaeda's White Helmets. She is equally comfortable doing 'Slava Ukrainis' with Right Sektor fascists as well. Voted to bomb Libya too. Canada has to be the only place in the world, where a neocon imperialist can call themselves 'left'. Complements FM Chrystia Freeland perfectly I'd say...

Syrian Civilization Confronts Western Barbarism
https://viralmount.com/2018/05/08/syrian-civilization-confronts-western-barbarism/

Posted by: John Gilberts | May 9, 2018 12:55:10 AM | 149

Jackrabbit @148. FWIW: I read that the new US sanctions won't begin for 3 months, and won't be in full effect for 6 months.

Posted by: Daniel | May 9, 2018 12:59:26 AM | 150

I see b’s Twitter linked to the “Moderate Rebels” discussion of Blumenthal/Cohen/Khalek. I hope y’all don’t mind my posting the below. I originally wrote it as an “open letter” to the above triumverate, but changed pronouns for this audience.

Max Blumenthal, Ben Cohen and Rania Khalek talk about their late “evolution” on the war against Syria in this episode of “Moderate Rebels.”

https://soundcloud.com/moderaterebelsradio/syria-palestine-salafism-wahhabism-islamophobia-rania-khalek-episode-18


For those who don’t know, each was pro-“oppositon,” anti-Syrian government for years, but changed positions sometime in around 2016.


I’m glad to hear Max finally directly address his anti-Syrian stance from 2011 to 2016. He acknowledges that Sharmine Narwani was correct all along. It would be nice to hear him actually apologize to Sharmine and other journalists he disparaged, but especially to the Syrian people who sure could have used the support of a well known Arab/Palestinian Rights advocate with a large audience and influence.

Yes, Max “didn’t take a serious look at what was actually going on” in Syria. And didn’t for 5 more years. He began writing for Al Aqbar from Lebanon in July, 2011. As a journalist, he was obligated to inform himself about what was happening just a couple hour drive away from his desk before writing about it. Syrian police and military had already been massacred by then. Post office workers had been thrown to their deaths from the roof because they were “government supporters.” The violence of the “protesters” was even being reported in Israeli newspapers.

He says he “didn’t think it was going to become, you know, the 7-year devastating conflict that it became.” That is apparent. Libya was already descending into the F-UK-US “Mission Accomplished” with NATO bombers warming up to finish the job. Perhaps Max’s dad had assured him that Syria would follow the same pattern his emails with Hillary Clinton show he had helped plan/define in Libya.

BTW: Has he ever addressed his father’s role in the destruction of the once most prosperous country on the African continent? I haven’t read or heard anything from Max on Syd Blumenthal’s pre-Qaddafi “removal” explanation that Libya had to be destroyed to:
1. Steal their nationalized oil.
2. Confiscate the hundreds of tons of gold and silver Libya held.
3. Prevent Libya from establishing a gold-backed currency and pan-African development bank to compete with the US petro-dollar and IMF, and lift Africa out of neo-colonial subservience.

Yeah. Max was “pretty quiet on Libya and not really - didn’t really make any coherent statements on that either.”

That newspaper that Max publicly maligned and quit (“grandstanding” as he now says) “had taken an anti-imperialist agenda.” Did that paper ever reject any articles Max wrote defending “the Syrian revolution?” I didn’t think so. Who had “an agenda?” Because it sure sounds like it was Max who was so focused on his new book release and 2 upcoming book tours that at the least he abandoned journalistic values. Or did he fear that “being associated” with a paper that also published articles critical of “the revolution” could hurt book sales?

After all, he thought it was all going to be over soon anyway.

It would also be nice for Max to explain why, once he changed his position on Syria after Russia had helped turn the tide, he, Ben and Rania scrubbed all their anti-Syrian/pro-“rebel” posts from the internet without explanation. How Orwellian.

But he “just haven’t really had the chance to sit down and write” an apology and explanation.

And once Russia stepped in, Max was “pretty relieved” he didn’t “have to engage in” the Syrian disaster and so he ‘’sort of tapped out.” Wait. I thought he just said that was when he finally “tapped in” and began investigating and writing about what had really been going on.

So, he goes on to say that after the “eastern Aleppo operation,” he “started to come to” his “senses” “BECAUSE I STARTED TO REALIZE THAT AN INTERVENTION AT THIS POINT BY THE US WOULD BE A RECIPE FOR CATASTROPHE!” Wait! What? It was too late for “intervention,” so Max changed horses? And then he finally took a few weeks to read what he could about Syria and do his “due diligence.”

Another BTW: Why did Max write those articles on the White Helmets without crediting Cory Morningstar, Vanessa Beeley and other journalists whose work he so obviously relied on? I read those articles, and saw NOTHING that I hadn’t already read at 21st Century Wire. What “independent investigative journalism” did Max and Ben do?


Rania says she has Druze Syrian relatives, and somehow that kept her from investigating and reporting on the sectarian “rebels” in Syria. Huh? Everything I hear is that most Syrians don’t really classify people by their religion. Yes, as she says, the Syrian war has engendered the most deluded propaganda. Yes, the reporting (MSM that is) was horrible. But those are not excuses to avoid it. Those are reasons for her to have deeply investigated and reported the truth.

Ben notes that the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine always supported the Syrian government against the Zionist-supported “rebels” and wrote that quite clearly by 2013. Ben specifies that one cannot support Palestinian Liberation AND the “rebels” in Syria. Yet, he did. For years. Ben’s explanation of his “evolution” on Syria is the least legitimate of this group. But they ran out of time while Ben was talking, so maybe he’ll do better in episode 3.

Posted by: Daniel | May 9, 2018 1:08:00 AM | 151

Jackrabbit 100

Again, even IF Hezbollah have missiles, why are you trying to justify Israeli attacks on them?
And NO China have NEVER said they would "defend" NK against US attacks. You guys never learn, its like you guys claimed "Russia will defend Syria"! Didnt and wont happen!

Posted by: Anon | May 9, 2018 1:34:16 AM | 152

No false flag is necessary, Israel will poke and poke Syria and Iran until one of them pokes back, then the principle that "history" starts when the Israeli government wants it to will be used to explain that Syria/Iran's wanton act of aggression requires a massive response.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | May 9, 2018 1:44:15 AM | 153

John Bolton: Washington Hopes EU to Reimpose Anti-Tehran Sanctions
https://sputniknews.com/us/201805091064273837-usa-iran-europe-sanctions-bolton/

There is no way EU will reject Trump now, they will def. pull out of the deal too.

Posted by: Anon | May 9, 2018 1:47:14 AM | 154

Thanks for the interesting commentary, Daniel @151, I had listened to that podcast and enjoyed their conversation and was not aware of the general background you provided. They certainly seem to be atoning for their "sins" in a way, it is difficult for people to admit they were wrong and even harder to admit one's failures of character, so good on them for sticking now to a principled stance, it has certainly gotten them attacked both by establishment types as well as "pro-NATO anti-imperialists" like Louis Proyect. You have a point though on your criticism of the development of this principled stance taking well longer than necessary given the circumstances.

Interesting that you bring up the lack of acknowledgement of journalists like Vanessa Beely in Max Blumenthal's articles on the White Helmets and Syria Campaign, perhaps association with them would be too much "discrediting" of them in the "mainstream", since someone like Beely is in the "crazy conspiracy theorist" category for the general western audience (apologies for all the scare quotes in that sentence). I hesitate to speculate on plagiarism as you seem to do, but it is a possibility, I just like to give people the benefit of the doubt here.

Posted by: George Lane | May 9, 2018 1:59:26 AM | 155

Defense spending in the US is also a politicially acceptable means of Keynesian revenue redistribution: military contractors and facilities are a major source of jobs and tax revenue, especially in states without a lot of other sources of employment.
And that is another factor that keeps defense spending high: it is in fact a form of social program but does not share the same "leftist" political stigma that other social programs share.

Posted by: ralphieboy | May 9, 2018 2:08:31 AM | 156

The US withdrawal from the nuclear deal with Tehran on Tuesday is the first step in the American plan for a regime change in Iran carried out in accordance with the Iraqi scenario, Middle East expert Sami Ramadani told RT.
https://www.follownews.com/us-wants-iraqistyle-regime-change-in-iran-4fow1

Posted by: Anon | May 9, 2018 2:38:03 AM | 157

The best way to effect a "regime change" in Iran is to let the young generation vote one into place. US actions are effecting just the opposite.

Posted by: ralphieboy | May 9, 2018 2:48:34 AM | 158

@153 The Syrians will continue to take this on the chin until they have the S-300 in place. Then they will attempt to shoot down a couple of Israeli F-15 over Lebanese airspace and - ideally - do so when those Israeli jets are just about to fire off some cruise missiles into Syria.

The Israelis can - and undoubtedly will - throw a hissy-fit if the Syrians succeeded but, let's face it, if Israel wanted to use that as an excuse for an all-out war then they'll look pretty pathetic.

After all, under those circumstances it will be undeniable that those jets will be were they were not supposed to be when they were brought down.

Posted by: Yeah, Right | May 9, 2018 2:57:06 AM | 159

@anon 154

The idea you want to push is that the USA coalition can militarily operated with absolute impunity which it actually can't. Otherwise they'd uses fighter planes sorties to take out the Syrian Air defense instead of slow limited and expensive ground attack cruise missiles.
Other being the Chinese continually arming their artificially built islets in the south china sea. What ? Can the USA prevent that ? That bases is the response the China do for the USA repeated economic sanctions and blockade to themselves. Now those islands extended the PLA strategic projection as close as the Philippines bases which enjoyed immunity being behind Japan and SKorea.

Posted by: cbrown | May 9, 2018 3:01:02 AM | 160

@154 I do not doubt that the American thinking (if they think at all) is that the Europeans can be relied upon to show the same gutless servitude to American diktats as ever.

Paul Craig Roberts discussed this at length some time ago, when he said that it is all up to the Europeans now. If they continue to bend the knee to the likes of Bolton then war is inevitable, much of Europe will be in ruins, and the human cost will be astronomical.

Or the Europeans will grow a spine, in which case NATO is history, the USA is humiliated, and everyone lives.

To my mind there is only one sensible option there, but I'm inclined to believe that the Europeans will, indeed, go full-Lemming.

Posted by: Yeah, Right | May 9, 2018 3:08:01 AM | 161

Thanks for the recognition, George Lane. I’ve been more or less a fan of Max for some years now. And I do appreciate that he, Ben and Rania are finally making clear how wrong they were, though again, I do question why he hasn’t found the time to write a bold and public mea culpa in the two years or so since they had their “road to Damascus” epiphany. The harm they caused in creating the "animal Assad" narrative that drove liberal interventionism is immeasurable.

But he does exhibit some qualities that make me wonder how much is limited hangout. Not least of which is the fact that his father is a decades-long Clinton advisor whose fingerprints are on every deadly policy targeting Muslims that the Clintons engaged in over that time.

For instance, the very title of his book on the merciless IOF slaughtering of Palestinians in 2014, “The 51 Day War” is a lie. The 51 day measure comes from the Israeli claim that the “war” began on July 8. They choose that day because on July 7, Hamas fired the first rockets they had fired since signing the cease fire 18 months earlier. So, the “war” is framed once again as an Israeli “response” to Palestinian aggression.

In reality, the IOF had already been bombing Gaza for three weeks by then, killing more than a dozen people including an infant. On July 7, the IOF bombed a Hezbollah headquarters, killing several, so the rocket firing was actually a response to Israeli aggression.

In addition, in those preceding weeks, Israeli police or military had killed several Palestinians in the West Bank, destroyed three homes and arrested hundreds. All of this was allegedly a “response” to the heinous murder of three teen-aged “settlers” on June 12. NuttyYahoo blamed Hamas, and even suggested the settlers were still alive, even though their deaths had been recorded in an emergency phone call they made, and the Israelis knew the suspects were not Hamas members.

A journalist researching and writing a “definitive” and critical study of Israel’s most recent “mowing the lawn” should have known and acknowledged those facts. Instead of exposing that “war” as yet another Israeli aggression, Max criticizes it as an “overreaction” to Palestinian aggression.

Another point worth considering is that Max relentlessly harasses Israel-born Jewish musician and author, Gilad Atzmon, calling him an “anti-semite” and “holocaust denier” at every opportunity.

Atzmon’s Zionist heritage is indisputable. His family was among the early European Jewish immigrants to Palestine. His grandfather was what he now calls “a terrorist” in the Irgun gang that murdered British and non-Jewish Palestinians both before and DURING WW II.

Gilad was conscripted into the IDF, and served during the 1982 war against Lebanon. It was visiting Israeli POW camps for Palestinians that first began to open his eyes to the reality of “the Jewish State.” Peering through the barbed wire at underfed and mistreated Palestinians reminded him of nothing except his ancestors who’d died at the hands of the Nazis. He came to refer to Zionism as "very much a supremacist, racist tendency.”

Many of the things he wrote about that earned him the “holocaust denier” label are now accepted parts of Israeli history, such as the Haavra (Transfer) Agreement the Zionists made with the Nazis in 1933.

And he came to see that the Zionists used the Holocaust much to their benefit, regardless of the harm it caused others (including actual “Holocaust survivors,” 25% of whom in Israel live in poverty while more recent immigrants “making aliyah” are paid substantial fees to move to Israel and receive subsidized housing in the occupied territories.

So, Gilad is a much more critical Jew than Max, willing to lift curtains that are verboten (and actually illegal in many countries). Max uses his mainstream platform to demonize him, no doubt warning away many people from examining too closely Gilad and the claims/observations that he and others make.

Posted by: Daniel | May 9, 2018 3:16:22 AM | 162

ralphieboy

Iran have elections, why do you propose a regime change?
Besides hawks in Iran benefit from Trump/Israeli threats now.


Yeah, Right

Israel will bomb until Assad is dead. S300 will never be sold to Syria.

Concering EU. Yes they will approve Trump even if it means suicide (economically) with the sanctions that will
be restarted again.
I sense the pathetic EU also will be on board to sanction Iran for its missile program now.

cbrown

They dont need to take out the jets at this moment but have all the power to do it, and I am sure they will within a year from this.

Posted by: Anon | May 9, 2018 3:20:18 AM | 163

The nuke deal meant the end of UNSC sanctions on Iran related to nukes. What the EU does is neither here nor there. EU is a non entity. Russia and China and any other countries that chooses or has the balls to do so, can trade with Iran, in line with international law.
Unlike the US, a number of countries do observe i international law and do stick to agreements.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | May 9, 2018 3:25:05 AM | 164

MAGA people are unhappy about this; the traditional cuck wing of the GOP is ecstatic.

Some potential positives from an anti-globalist point of view.

1. This further erodes the global power structure dominated by American hegemony. The rest of the world will rally to Iran's cause since they are no doubt seen as the good guys while Trump and Israel are the evil ones.

2. The question of Israeli influence on US foreign policy gets raised; this time by the establishment Left. Should be interesting to see how US Zionists who normally hide behind the camouflage of goodthink, will react publicly.

3. This further increases the influence of Russia and China; leading us one step closer to a true multi-polar world.

Posted by: Working Class Nero | May 9, 2018 3:48:27 AM | 165

For a while there I thought Russia was actually going to do something about Israel bombing Syria at will, but it looks like Putin is willing to let his work be undone so as not to offend NutYahoo and company. There is no justice in this world.

Posted by: rcentros | May 9, 2018 3:49:23 AM | 166

It is good that not only me who suspect Jackrabbit is a neocon plant tasked here in MoA. Back during the Turkey coup , Jackrabbit constantly post about the coup as erdogan's covert ops and totally dismiss possibility that it is a US led coup.

there's categories of trolls/astroturfers/hasbaras , some acted like imbecile posting nonsense like Anon , Paul and the regular trolls here who so blatantly obvious , and some only post disinformation when time comes and they posted in rather civilized manners.

It is the basics of Astroturfing 101 , Tag Teaming and Sock Puppetry..

Posted by: Lufasu Mafalu | May 9, 2018 4:05:25 AM | 167

@anon #163

"Iran have elections, why do you propose a regime change?"

I am not for imposing a regime change from outside, I am for letting the people vote to change the regime to one that is less Fundamentalist.

Every time the USA makes threatening gestures towards Iran, they strengthen the position of the hardliners. Totally counterproductive to US interests, unless that interest is more conflict.


Posted by: ralphieboy | May 9, 2018 4:06:31 AM | 168

Yeah, Right #161

"Or the Europeans will grow a spine, in which case NATO is history, the USA is humiliated, and everyone lives.

To my mind there is only one sensible option there, but I'm inclined to believe that the Europeans will, indeed, go full-Lemming."

Europe is being called upon to think in its long-term interests. China and Russia will continue to support the deal, and those powers are in ascendancy while America holds steady or even declines as a result of relentlessly pursuing "America First".

And they know that Trump and his policies will not last forever.

Posted by: ralphieboy | May 9, 2018 4:09:07 AM | 169

Loz @114. I’m afraid I find that Duran article rather weak tea. Most of the digital ink is spilled describing the official Zionist Israel perspective. But what does Russia get out of this?

Try a shot of Vodka, distilled in Jerusalem and served up by an Australian. I don’t necessarily concur with his conclusions, but the rabbit hole he presents provides much irrefutable evidence of deeper workings of the supra-national financial interests behind the whole show.

And do follow some of the links he provides.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AQgAf3e2eKA&app=desktop

Posted by: Daniel | May 9, 2018 4:11:29 AM | 170

ralphieboy

Well thats the issue becuase Iran already have elections, they have voted a reform candidate to power - Rouhani.
Why do you propose a "regime change" by iranian people when they have already voted for their candidate?
This is close to neocon talk about MENA states must turn liberal and democratic-like as the west.

Posted by: Anon | May 9, 2018 4:11:39 AM | 171

@Anon 164
Just as capable the Russia and China can launch nuclear war that theoretically they could win by a push of button.
If we reverse that then The USA can't stop Russian annexation of crimea, stopping Syrian government advance, or militarization of the south China sea. Can you see the contradiction ?

Posted by: cbrown | May 9, 2018 4:20:58 AM | 172

@Anon

and the people of Iran (which has a burgeoning youth population) did well to elect a progressive candidate despite the country having an Islamic "Guardian Council" with the power to disqualify any candidate that it disproves of.

I would like to see the day that the Islamic Council is deprived of its theocratic power. That is the sort of "regime change" I would favor. But not one imposed by force from outside.

Posted by: ralphieboy | May 9, 2018 4:33:05 AM | 173

Amazing how many believers in US and Israeli supremacy are still commenting on this thread, even if they're pretending (to themselves) not to be. I haven't seen Pat Lang's recent commentary "Israel's Juvenile Ground Army" mentioned very much over the coming war (if indeed it is coming). He is right - the Israeli ground army is reduced to virtual impotence, only capable of slaughtering unarmed Palestinian civilians. In fact, although he obviously depends much on 2006, he doesn't mention that much the same happened during Gaza 2014. The ground force made very little progress at all against the irregular light-armed Gaza militias, and they went back to air-bombing. Not no progress, just a few hundred metres, so not that they were not trying. Very quickly dropped from the media at the time.

The fact is, Israel has a functioning airforce, but nothing else. Well, we all know what you can do with just an airforce, and the limits it has.

Obviously I don't know what the Israeli military are advising Netanyahu, but I'd be surprised if it's changed very much. Israel trying to provoke Iran to respond in Syria seems to me childish (but not far off the limit of what Israel can really do). Both Russia and Iran are brighter than that (even if Trump isn't).

Posted by: Laguerre | May 9, 2018 5:06:36 AM | 174

170
Mercouris is generally accurate on law and politics.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | May 9, 2018 5:08:19 AM | 175

Danial 170

Had a click through your link. What shit are you on? Something served up by a yank, heavily spiced by zion?

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | May 9, 2018 5:17:29 AM | 176

@ ralphieboy

and what exactly is wrong with theocratic government? Just because you are atheist? Actually its a perfect government for Iran. It provides a cultural, political, moral backbone vast majority of "Western" democracies dont have. ALL of them sooner or later become oligarchies and are ruled by 0,001% globalists, with MSM in their pocket.

Its much better if leader is clearly visible (like Khamenei) instead of being in the shadows, playing heads of states like puppets (Trump, Macron, etc).

I also dislike the term "hardliner", its a derogatory term to denigrate those who see their country as priority (Assad, Putin, Khamenei, Ahmadinejad), as opposed by "liberals" and "reformers" who care less about their country than to play along with globalists and increase own bank balance (pick any oligarch of your choice).

Posted by: Harry | May 9, 2018 5:24:32 AM | 177

ralphieboy

Why does it bother you what kind of system they have in Iran? The iranian people are fine without these kind of judgments I am sure.


Laguerre

Israel is the strongest force in the region with the US, why wouldnt one point out such obvious facts?
We have seen how the refusal to acknowledge this led to the errornous claims that Russia would respond to Syria attacks militarly, apparently without the knowledge that Russia wouldnt win such a war to say atleast.

Posted by: Anon | May 9, 2018 5:26:24 AM | 178

I agree with post 7. B, this post is so lop-sided it begs the question: why did you also leave out the fact obummer worked the cash-bribe iran nuke deal behind closed doors, without the US congress. ??? QAnon's many revelations since last November obviously prove the case of the outlaw US empire is in fact "pre-Trunp" and though he seems Deep State, it is just the way he works his art of the deal to flush out the real criminals and all the billions in cash they looted from us via the plane loads of multiple currancies to "IRAN." Iran makes threats of war to keep Trump from uncovering their scam for cash via kerry and obummer...WHER WE GO ONE, WE GO ALL.

Posted by: 46ZERing | May 9, 2018 5:46:23 AM | 179

@46ZERing 181
Which one were scam or which one is the bribe ? Don't say where it unloaded cash of USD in Iran by plane again.

Posted by: cbrown | May 9, 2018 6:00:17 AM | 180

re 180

Israel is the strongest force in the region with the US, why wouldnt one point out such obvious facts?
We have seen how the refusal to acknowledge this led to the errornous claims that Russia would respond to Syria attacks militarly, apparently without the knowledge that Russia wouldnt win such a war to say atleast.
You're a real believer, aren't you? You're like the Brexiter cultists in Britain.

If you can't see that Putin is brighter than to respond to pointless Israeli provocations, you won't get very far. Russia has won very handily in Syria so far, and the two US missile attacks (the 59 and 102) show very well that the US is unwilling to commit to war against Russia. Why waffle on about Russia losing? Russia is not losing.

Posted by: Laguerre | May 9, 2018 6:13:07 AM | 181

Laguerre

If you deny that Israel is the biggest force in the region along US, then there is no need to advance this argument.

Putin, Putin Putin, guys like you needs to stop idolizing him and see whats going on in the real world.
Fact is that Putin worked with US/EU/UK/France on the illegal bombings of Syria. He was notified of the bombings etc. Add to that his rejection to place S300 in Syria, why? Because US/Israel dont want him to. He worked with these same warcriminals not only in Syria but also Libya etc.

If we could turn back time, you would probably naively yell out that "Qhadaffi is winning, cant you see that!".


Posted by: Anon | May 9, 2018 6:32:22 AM | 182

Israel once again attacks Syria and Iran and hours later Putin is palling around with Netanyahu. I don't think Putin could find a more obvious way to send a message: Russia is on the side of the rich and powerful, period, full stop. It will not defend Syria or Iran in any way. Syria must accept that it has been carved up. Iran must kneel to Israel. The Palestinians must accept the 'peace' that is thrust on them. The strong win. The weak lose. This is the real Putin. The one who seemed passionate about a better, more fair, more just, more diverse world system was a mask. Putin used that mask to gain credibility on the global stage, somewhat aping the role played by far better human beings and leaders, such as Chavez. He was perhaps history's greatest example of 'controlled opposition' to the Hegemon's final rampage. All this sucks for the future of humanity. The bottom line, so to speak, is that Iran must realize that it has no ally in Russia. Russia is a lot more dedicated to its relationship with Israel and much more desirous of a relationship with the US. Iran has no friends at this point.

For God's sake, I know we mere humans can do nothing at this point. The global system is nearly inescapably in place and will be based on predatory capitalism, centralized control and surveillance, etc.. But at least the commentariat should stop making excuses for Putin. What he is doing on the global stage at this point is despicable, to put it mildly. He could have given the world a chance at a better future. But he thought there was more money to be made in vassalage to the Hegemon.

Watch your back, Iran. Same to you Assad. Not that it will do you any good...

Posted by: paul | May 9, 2018 6:39:01 AM | 183

Several people here appear to have forgotten that from 2008 to 2012, Vladimir Putin was only Prime Minister of Russia and thus had little influence on Russian foreign policy. Dmitri Medvedev was President at the time. It was under his Presidency that Russia agreed to a no-fly zone over Libya in 2011.

I believe Dmitri Medvedev has become Prime Minister of Russia again.

Posted by: Jen | May 9, 2018 7:00:43 AM | 184

1939 Paul:
Germany once again attacks Czechoslovalia and hours later Stalin is palling around with Hitler. I don't think Stalin could find a more obvious way to send a message: USSR is on the side of the rich and powerful, period, full stop. It will not defend Czechoslovakia or Poland in any way. Poland must accept that it has been carved up. Czechoslovakia must kneel to Germany. The Europeans must accept the 'peace' that is thrust on them. The strong win. The weak lose. This is the real Stalin.

Posted by: Clueless Joe | May 9, 2018 7:37:16 AM | 185

Snap back- See Anon, you don't interrupt a enemy when he is making mistakes....You let him carry on ! The American cancelling or pullout of JCPOA in my opinion cancels the snap back provision.
Dumb Trump should have went the route of snap back. Now TRump can't because the US is not part of JCPOA as my TV tells me constantly today. The Iranian position would be, if your not part of the agreement anymore you can't avail yourself to it's disputation process so you cant snap back..!
What is snap back, from CIA approved wiki
If Iran violates the agreement, any of the P5+1 can invoke a "snap back" provision, under which the sanctions "snap back" into place (i.e., are reimplemented).[62][63][107]

Specifically, the JCPOA establishes the following dispute resolution process: if a party to the JCPOA has reason to believe that another party is not upholding its commitments under the agreement, then the complaining party may refer its complaint to the Joint Commission, a body created under the JCPOA to monitor implementation.[64][108] If a complaint made by a non-Iran party is not resolved to the satisfaction of the complaining party within thirty-five days of referral, then that party could treat the unresolved issue as grounds to cease performing its commitments under the JCPOA, notify the United Nations Security Council that it believes the issue constitutes significant non-performance, or both.[108] The Security Council would then have thirty days to adopt a resolution to continue the lifting of sanctions. If such a resolution is not adopted within those thirty days, then the sanctions of all of the pre-JCPOA nuclear-related UN Security Council resolutions would automatically be re-imposed. Iran has stated that in such a case, it would cease performing its nuclear obligations under the deal.[53][108] The effect of this rule is that any permanent member of the Security Council (United States, United Kingdom, China, Russia and France) can veto any ongoing sanctions relief, but no member can veto the re-imposition of sanctions.

Well if Trump bothered to read the JCPOA and UNDERSTOOD it he might have gone this route and how easy it would have been, trumped up charges of Yellowcakle in Niger, hay presto UN sanctions back on..Their is stupid and then their ...?

Posted by: col from OZ | May 9, 2018 7:38:52 AM | 186

re 184.

If you deny that Israel is the biggest force in the region along US

Like I say, you're a real believer (in old-fashioned power politics). I bet you thought the US was going to win in Vietnam. Nearly everybody like you did at the time. They just changed their tune, and pretended they always knew, after the fall of Saigon.

Israel has reached the limit of what it can do. It can't go further, without putting its survival very seriously at risk. I think the Israeli military understand this, but Netanyahu is pushed by his corruption accusations, and may do something stupid.

The US is on the decline in Syria. They're just not ready to admit it yet. That's why they talk about eternal war. They're trying to convince themselves as much as anyone. Trump said it by talking about withdrawal. He can't unsay it, however much he may deny it now, on advice. There's really no need for Putin to be goaded into war, nor Iran either. The two US attacks so far have just been political shows for internal consumption in the West. Only a mass invasion could turn the war around now, and the US is not going to do that. and even that would not lead to a victory for the US. It's all a big noise, with Trump.

Posted by: Laguerre | May 9, 2018 7:53:42 AM | 187

Laguerre

"Israel has reached the limit of what it can do. It can't go further, without putting its survival very seriously at risk. I think the Israeli military understand this, but Netanyahu is pushed by his corruption accusations, and may do something stupid."

"The US is on the decline in Syria"

Israel like US have started pounding Syria every other week/month now, a clear escalation by them and just recently threatened to assassinated al-Assad and also threatened to bomb Libanon
Its this naive thinking again.

"Israel is weak, they have reached their limit, no worry.."
"US is weak, they cant do anything, you are stupid"

The same arguments that got US stuck in Vietnam. The hubris you are portraying so well here.

Would be interesting to go back to your comments when US/Israel start bombing Iran/Lebanon/Syria even more. Maybe you understand then, for now I got nothing more to add.

Posted by: Anon | May 9, 2018 8:08:16 AM | 188

Trump is killing the treaty for one reason only.

The government of Israel wants it killed. Netanyahu went out of his way to thank Trump immediately for this grotesque blunder.

By pleasing the government of Israel in a big way – and there’s the double-plus of the insane embassy move - Trump is assuring himself of the most generous support possible in 2020 from the American Israel Lobby.

It could be called playing the Truman card, President Truman having won the 1948 election he had been forecast to lose after bowing to pressure, and against his best judgment as he told us in memoirs, from Israel supporters to immediately recognize the self-declared state of Israel.

He has assured himself lots of good publicity in high-end newspapers and by the major broadcasters plus generous campaign finance contributions.

That is the way politics work in America.

All at the cost to the world of stability and security.

And at the cost to America’s reputation for holding to its agreements, something which could prove extremely costly in the near future.

And the cost of adding a new element of hostility and risk of war in a very turbulent world.

What a way to run a government, the most consequential government on earth.

Posted by: JOHN CHUCKMAN | May 9, 2018 8:25:20 AM | 189

@112

Oh, so, let me get this straight: Putin has a problem with an Iranian gas pipeline through Syria to Europe but he has no problem with his guest of honor's Netanyahoo's pipeline to Europe???

I think I'll stick to Saker's skepticism over your spin. Thanks.

http://business.financialpost.com/pmn/business-pmn/cyprus-israel-greece-push-east-med-gas-pipeline-to-europe

Posted by: Circe | May 9, 2018 8:35:55 AM | 190

Which came first, the chicken or the egg? Which came first, Russian Zionist oligarchy or Putin?

I thought Putin wanted to counter-balance global power. Now I'm starting to think all those Syrians were massacred for Zionism of a Russian flavor.

The Empire isn't America; the Empire is Zionist ruled and Putin is starting to look like he has no problem with that.

Posted by: Circe | May 9, 2018 8:45:59 AM | 191

190

Your ignorance of the Middle East isn't helping you.

Would be interesting to go back to your comments when US/Israel start bombing Iran/Lebanon/Syria even more.
You're a cult believer, as I said before. No logical reason will ever affect you. The Israelis have all got their second passports ready to fly out when Haifa gets rendered uninhabitable. The Israeli people aren't interested in going through a war that actually affects them. And they can't do anything to stop the missiles. Only Netanyahu is a lunatic, along with his fellow wildmen.

Posted by: Laguerre | May 9, 2018 9:03:44 AM | 192

Daniel @129

I am deadly earnest.

Posted by: WJ | May 9, 2018 9:10:42 AM | 193

Jackrabbit @ 148, good question

It seems that Trump lets/is forced to play out these neocon/neolib dramas to some extent. I think it helps to point out the absurdity of some of these positions without letting them go over the brink. I see the Mueller investigation in somewhat the same light, backfiring on its proponents.

Posted by: financial matters | May 9, 2018 9:23:02 AM | 194

I have to wonder how thick some people are that they haven't worked out why President Putin is hosting the repulsive Bibi at the military parade.
For goodness sake - take a look folks.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=2257&v=SdYFFo_tsfk
Here you are.
A brilliant sight - what magnificent troops - the cream of Russia and real cream too not just the top of the milk.
Enough to put the fear of God into any two bit bully and mass murderer whose forces couldn't withstand Hezbollah.
Here we are Israel - Putin is saying.
Meet the boys and girls on OUR block.
And take the message home to your White House puppets.
Tangle with us if you DARE.
This is Russia TODAY.
These are our real men.
The real thing and I for one, stand squarely with them.
Two fingers raised....
Well done Sir.

Posted by: Emily | May 9, 2018 9:26:18 AM | 195

Here's an analogy for who pulls the strings: America thinks Zionism is its exclusive lover; but Zionism is screwing around with Russia on the side and the Saudi Kingdom is also a client, and I'm starting to suspect Putin is all in and obviously Trump doesn't mind sharing with Putin as long as they reap the power in their respective vassal states. The only ones who mind are those Americans who want exclusive control, but Zionism is a whore at heart and a blood-thirsty war monger who will stop at nothing and use whatever power source is convenient to impose its world order.

Now, I know that many continue to believe that it's the other way around, that Zionism is the vassal of the U.S., but, that's because they mistakenly equate Zionism only with Israel when Israel is merely the biblical excuse, the symbolic Shangri-la that extorts through guilt to secure and ensure Zionist power around the world. Zionism is a global multi-national with unlimited financial, political and propaganda resources derived from global financial tyranny and influence; it's not just the puny country with hundreds of nukes in the Middle East that bitches a lot about being a quintessential victim of potential existential annihilation. Zionism is the Empire; it looms over all geopolitics and I don't see any significant resistance that is adversely affecting its expansion. The only countries that could pose a threat are top oil producers still resisting this expansion, Iran being top of the list and Venezuela being a nuisance, as without military strength; they're powerless. Then there's the enigma of China; which although not an oil/gas producer is a major economic/military force to be reckoned with especially since its need for oil and gas is expanding exponentially. No doubt China is an unpredictable roadblock to Zionist expansion but not without Iran as its main fuel provider. Alas, I'm starting to think that Russia is not a resistor after all; instead, I'm seeing another one biting the dust.

Posted by: Circe | May 9, 2018 9:59:43 AM | 196

@196

Methinks the show is mostly for the Russian people and not meant to drive the fear of God into Netanyahoo. If you're falling for the spectacle; then no doubt many Russians are too. The ones holding the purse strings have all the power; and Netanyahoo is their messenger.

Posted by: Circe | May 9, 2018 10:10:58 AM | 197

Circe 197.

Look at the Russian Military.
Look at the Russian Ministers and generals.
Do you really really think that men of that calibre would be supporting a possible traitor suspected of selling out to zionism and the NWO?
Secretly in league with Israel and the neo cons.
If you can't trust Putin himself - trust the people around him.
They are not traitors and pushovers - they love their country and intend to keep it, protect it, nurture it and continue making it great.
I wish we had such mighty men and great leaders in Britain.
We have Theresa May and Boris the clown - heaven help us.
Now, there is traitor to the country - a sell out to the neo libs and neo cons and to globalism.
And its not pretty.

Posted by: Emily | May 9, 2018 10:12:10 AM | 198

Okay, 'read' all the comments and still no excellent take on the larger significance of Trump's decision to do what Netanyahu told him to do and blow up the Iran agreement. Many including b are merely in the right ballpark with the following take:

This further increases the influence of Russia and China; leading us one step closer to a true multi-polar world. [@165]

But, no. True, the Israel crybaby gets its way and this not only has major repercussions at a critical time but also tells all that the US has no chance for the foreseeable future of escaping Israel's power to decide the US empire's #1 strategic priority (which will be, no surprise, whatever Israel's #1 priority is) but the results of that are mixed up and lack a sense of realpolitik. For starters, Russia is a minor consideration (its economy is natural resources based, about the size of Spain's and not growing) and 'multi-polar' is just biased against China.

What has been stopped by Israel forcing the US to obsess on Iran -- and big picture to continue to be masively over-focused on the Middle East -- is the major shift the U.S. military and imperial establishment knows it needs to make quickly, toward stopping China's consolidation of power in northeast Asia. I mean, look at the choices Trump is making, to do Israel's foolish dirty work against Iran while on the other hand allowing if not being manipulated into 'leading' detente between the two Koreas. Peace between the two Koreas is the #1 thing a realpolitik U.S. imperialist would want to stop. But instead it looks like a choice has been made that all the usual demonization propaganda, false flags, economic warfare, and lies leading up to war will focus on Iran. Smart US imperialism would want all that stuff primarily focused on China by now, but instead it looks very likely China is getting a free hand to bring both Koreas firmly, happily and pretty quickly into its orbit of influence.

So the end result of rejecting the Iran deal is not multipolar, it's China. Somebody do the compound interest for me, how fast will China double the size of its economy at 6 to 6.5% growth rate? How fast are the neoliberalized economies growing?

Great comment below by Don Bacon @127. I'm also relatively optimistic (the US & UK having set a low bar) about how the cautious, balanced east Asian mentality will handle the burden of being the world #1:

Westerners don't understand Asians, where the growth is, for one thing. So the thought is that these people from the East will be as imperialistic as the West has been, once they get clearance to act badly. I don't believe that either. I've lived in the East and the fact is they ain't like the West. It's a fact.

Posted by: fairleft | May 9, 2018 10:17:53 AM | 199

@Harry # 179

"and what exactly is wrong with theocratic government? Just because you are atheist? Actually its a perfect government for Iran. It provides a cultural, political, moral backbone vast majority of "Western" democracies dont have. ALL of them sooner or later become oligarchies and are ruled by 0,001% globalists, with MSM in their pocket."

A council of clerics who have the power to ban candidates or overturn laws is not in keeping with any form of democracy that I am aware of.

I am aware that Iran had a democratically elected a leader who was overthrown by the CIA in 1956 because he was threatening to nationalize their oil industry. We all know what that led to: Repressions by the Shah culminating in an Islamic revolution that installed a theocratic state.

But I would like to see Iran turned into a democracy by a popular and internal movement. I am anti-clerical: I do not think that religious leaders should play an active role in determining the government of any nation.

Posted by: ralphieboy | May 9, 2018 10:18:37 AM | 200

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