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December 13, 2018

British Spies Infiltrated Bernie Sanders' Campaign?

The Integrity Initiative, a British pseudo-NGO tasked with running anti-Russian propaganda operation, was recently exposed. Further digging into it revealed a much wider operation. It seems to involve a mole British spies inserted into the Bernie Sanders campaign.

Three weeks ago internal budget proposals and member lists of the Integrity Initiative were posted anonymously on some website. We discussed those in detail under the headline: British Government Runs Secret Anti-Russian Smear Campaigns:

In 2015 the government of Britain launched a secret operation to insert anti-Russia propaganda into the western media stream.

We have already seen many consequences of this and similar programs which are designed to smear anyone who does not follow the anti-Russian government lines. The 'Russian collusion' smear campaign against Donald Trump based on the Steele dossier was also a largely British operation but seems to be part of a different project.

The 'Integrity Initiative' builds 'cluster' or contact groups of trusted journalists, military personal, academics and lobbyists within foreign countries. These people get alerts via social media to take action when the British center perceives a need.

The leaked papers of the Initiative have since been confirmed as genuine. More relevant details continued to emerge:

We have barely scratched the surface of what it, and it’s project Integrity Initiative are. Everywhere we look we find links to what could be described as the ‘deep state’, including, but not limited to (by a long way), the Institute of Modern Russia, 77th Brigade, the Information Warfare Initiative, Prop or Not and a host of other organisations which, rather than protecting us against disinformation, appear to be running covert disinformation operations via the corporate media and on social media.

The Initiative, and its parent organization the Institute for Statecraft, are registered as a Scottish charity at a disused Scottish mill. The mill is owned by one of the institutes directors, Daniel Lafayeedney, who was a member of an SAS Regiment and later of the British Military Intelligence.

The British government confirmed that it paid £2.2 million to the Initiative but it refused to disclose "the nature and purpose" of the funding citing "national security". It also confirmed that three of the employees of the Initiative are members of UK Forces.

The BBC reported on the Initiative but, after talking to the government, completely changed its original story.

Several tweets by the Initiative's Twitter account were directed against the Labour party and its head Jeremy Corbyn:

One tweet quotes a newspaper article calling Corbyn a “useful idiot”, that goes on to state: “His open visceral anti-Westernism helped the Kremlin cause, as surely as if he had been secretly peddling Westminster tittle-tattle for money.”

Labour members of the parliament have asked why the British government would pay for such Tweets. In its answer the government tried to claim that it had nothing to do with the tweets. But the propaganda use of the Initiative's Twitter account was explicitly part of its budget proposal and the Labour MP Emily Thornberry continues to ask detailed questions:

Cont. reading: British Spies Infiltrated Bernie Sanders' Campaign?

Posted by b at 02:26 PM | Comments (10)

December 12, 2018

Short Term Thinking Dooms U.S. Anti-China Strategy

The United States issued an arrest warrant against the chief financial officer and heir apparent of Huawei, Meng Wanzhou. At issue is a six years old alleged violation of sanctions against Iran. Mrs. Meng was arrested in Canada. She has been set free under a stringent $10 million bail agreement. An extradition trial will follow in February or March.

It is unprecedented that an officer of a large company is personally indicted for the alleged sanction violations by a subsidiary company:

The US rarely arrests senior businesspeople, US or foreign, for alleged crimes committed by their companies. Corporate managers are usually arrested for their alleged personal crimes (such as embezzlement, bribery or violence) rather than their company’s alleged malfeasance.
...
Meng is charged with violating US sanctions on Iran. Yet consider her arrest in the context of the large number of companies, US and non-US, that have violated US sanctions against Iran and other countries. In 2011, for example, JPMorgan Chase paid US$88.3 million in fines for violating US sanctions against Cuba, Iran and Sudan. Yet chief executive officer Jamie Dimon wasn’t grabbed off a plane and whisked into custody.

The U.S. indicted dozens of banks for violating its sanction regime. They had to pay huge fines (pdf) but none of their officers were ever touched.

We called this U.S. operation a hostage taking to blackmail China. President Trump confirmed that this is indeed the case:

U.S. President Donald Trump told Reuters on Tuesday he would intervene in the U.S. Justice Department’s case against Meng if it would serve national security interests or help close a trade deal with China.

The arrest of Meng is but one part of a larger political campaign against China directed out of the office of National Security Advisor John Bolton:

The Trump administration is preparing actions this week to call out Beijing for what it says are China’s continued efforts to steal American trade secrets and advanced technologies and to compromise sensitive government and corporate computers, according to U.S. officials.

Multiple government agencies are expected to condemn China, citing a documented campaign of economic espionage and the alleged violation of a landmark 2015 pact to refrain from hacking for commercial gain.

In typical propaganda style the U.S. media depict the Chinese as enemies:

Cont. reading: Short Term Thinking Dooms U.S. Anti-China Strategy

Posted by b at 07:07 AM | Comments (134)

December 11, 2018

Open Thread 2018-67

News & views ...

Posted by b at 01:43 PM | Comments (132)

December 10, 2018

William Blum Died

William Blum died yesterday at the age of 85. He has written about the misdeeds of the U.S. government since the late 1960s. I have read many, many of his pieces and benefited from his knowledge. I especially liked his dry humor or snark that he sprinkled over them.

In its obit the Covered Action Magazine notes:

Initially an anti-communist with dreams of becoming a foreign service officer, he became disillusioned by the Vietnam War.

m is also the author of America’s Deadliest Export: Democracy – The Truth About U.S. Foreign Policy and Everything Else (2013), Rogue State: A Guide to the World’s Only Superpower (updated edition 2005), West-Bloc Dissident: A Cold War Memoir (2002), and Freeing the World to Death: Essays on the American Empire (2004).  His books have been translated into more than 15 languages.

In 2006 Blum's book 'Rogue State' was once recommend by Osama bin Laden which greatly increased its sales.

More than 150 of Blum's pieces were published by Counterpunch and are available here. On his website Blum also published the Anti Empire Report.

In July he took part in a panel and explains (vid) why the U.S. public is largely content with U.S. foreign policy. They believe, falsely, that the U.S. is always well intended. Mistakes are made, there are fuck ups, but the U.S. always means well. It is that illusion that must be eradicated to change U.S. foreign policy.

An hour long interview with him was recently published here (vid).

William Blum lived a long and fruitful life. Still, his death is a great loss for us.

May he rest in peace.

Posted by b at 02:00 PM | Comments (52)

December 09, 2018

The MoA Week In Review - OT 2018-66

Last week's posts on Moon of Alabama:

Official numbers show a downtrend of participants in the recent demonstrations and an uptrend of arrests. These numbers may be true or may not be true:


Via AFP - bigger

As of Friday support for the yellow vest protests still stood at 66%. On Tuesday Macron will hold a speech to the nation. What concessions, if any, is he willing to make? Will they be sufficient?

---

On December 2 the Israeli police recommended to the general attorney to indict prime minister, foreign minister, health minister, defense minister, etcetera minister Benjamin Netanyahoo for corruption. Two days later the Israeli Army made a big show of digging up some disused tunnels at the Lebanese borders. Netanyahoo personally announced the operation in a Monday night TV speech. It was a classic 'wag the dog' move. It is now turning into an embarrassment.

First Hezbullah media made jokes about the whole endeavor. Hizbullah itself did not even raise its readiness status. It knows that Netanyahoo is deterred and does not dare to attack Lebanon. Yesterday Hizbullah's military media unit published pictures of Israeli soldiers operating at the border. The shots were taken from behind the Israeli lines!


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The same day Israeli media report that the IDF soldiers at the border are missing two machine guns:

The guns were stolen after being found, as it appears, unattended.

The missing FN MAG machine guns were attached to vehicles and weight 12 kilogram each. Hizbollah's secretary general Hassan Nasrallah is likely to show them during his next public speech.

Use as open thread ...

Posted by b at 09:15 AM | Comments (238)

December 08, 2018

Les Déplorables Demand The Fall Of The Regime

Today we will again (read the comments) see large, and mostly peaceful gilets jaunes gatherings all over France to protest the neo-liberal policies of the Macron regime. The biggest ones will naturally occur in the capital Paris. They are likely to later develop into riots. The regime ordered 89,000 policemen onto the streets to counter any potential violence. 8,000 of them will be in Paris alone.

A problem is that police are often the cause of riots. Dressed like storm troopers and angry after way too many hours on the street they tend to attack with much brutality even when calm defense would be more appropriate.

After last week protest the Macron regime first delayed and then abolished the planned fuel tax hike that was the immediate cause of the yellow vest protests. That was too little too late and made his regime look weak. The people are now demanding more measures like a reintroduction of the wealth tax which Macron had abolished in one of his first acts in power.

Over the last week fireman, ambulance drivers, students and the administrative police union have joined the protests.

Luxury shops have been boarded up, museums and landmarks were closed. (An English language livestream can be watched here. Please point to others in the comments.) The police are an running early interdiction tactic, closing off roads and applying tear gas to kettle the people and to prevent larger gatherings at the Champs-Élysées. Hundreds have already been arrested. Meanwhile the protesters sing la Marseillaise. It is way too early for the police to use such force and it is not going to work. This only increases the anger of the protestors and will cause more conflagrations.


Les déplorables demand the fall of the regime.
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In a France24 report from a small town in the country side shows extraordinary solidarity between the people. Police passing through an occupied toll road entry sign the protesters petition, other pass by and gift food to the middle-aged protestors.

One woman makes an good point. Yes, the violence as seen in Paris last weekend was not nice. But only after last weeks protest went violent were the yellow vests really noted by the media and by the otherwise tone deaf politicians.

If the protestors today try to storm the Bastille, the Elyssée palace or whatever, if there are more casualties, more people will join protests and strikes during the next week. Macron will come under even more pressure. He will have to dismiss his prime minister and government. More pressure and he will have to dissolve the parliament and call for new elections. That would likely mean the end of his policies of further enriching the very rich while impoverishing the lower middle class and the poor.

Posted by b at 06:26 AM | Comments (154)

December 07, 2018

Neocons Sabotage Trump's Trade Talks - Huawei CFO Taken Hostage To Blackmail China

CNN reports that White House chief of staff John Kelly is expected to resign soon. There have been similar rumors before, but this time the news may actually be true. That is bad for Trump and U.S. policies. Kelly is one a the few counterweights to national security advisor John Bolton. His replacement will likely be whoever Bolton chooses. That will move contFrol over Trump policies further into the hands of the neo-conservatives.

It was Bolton who a week ago intentionally damaged U.S. relations with China.

The U.S. Justice Department arranged for Canada to arrest the chief financial officer of Huawei, Meng Wanzhou, over alleged U.S. sanctions violations with regards to Iran. The case is not over the sanction Trump recently imposed, but over an alleged collision with the sanction regime before the nuclear deal with Iran. The details are still unknown.

Meng Wanzhou is a daughter of the founder and main owner of Huawei, Ren Zhengfei, and was groomed to be his successor. The company is extremely well regarded in China. It is one of its jewel pieces and, with 170,000 employees and $100 billion in revenues, an important political actor.

The arrest on December 1 happened while president Trump was negotiating with president Xi of China about trade relations. Trump did not know about the upcoming arrest but Bolton was informed of it:

While the Justice Department did brief the White House about the impending arrest, Mr. Trump was not told about it. And the subject did not come up at the dinner with Mr. Xi.

Mr. Trump’s national security adviser, John R. Bolton, said on NPR that he knew about the arrest in advance, ..

Bolton surely should have informed Trump before his dinner with Xi, in which Bolton took part, but he didn't.


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It was a trap. The arrest is a public slap in the face of China and to Xi personally. It will not be left unanswered. Whatever Trump may have agreed upon with Xi is now worthless. John Bolton intentionally sabotaged the talks and the U.S. relations with China.

Cont. reading: Neocons Sabotage Trump's Trade Talks - Huawei CFO Taken Hostage To Blackmail China

Posted by b at 02:00 PM | Comments (161)

December 06, 2018

Whitewash - The 'Last Bastion Of Freedom' Is An Al-Qaeda Infested Town

This week the New Yorker published a long piece on Saraqib, a town in Idleb governorate in Syria.

Syria’s Last Bastion of Freedom
Amid the brutal civil war, a town fought off the regime and the fundamentalists—and dared to hold an election. Can its experiment in democracy survive?

The piece tells us that, despite the fact that al-Qaeda rules Idleb since at least 2015, it is really a cradle of genuine democracy:

In the summer of 2017, for the first time anywhere in Syria since 1954, the residents of the town of Saraqib decided to seize control of their future—and hold a genuinely free election.

On the morning that polls were to open, an activist named Osama al-Hossein woke up at five o’clock, feeling anxious. He soon headed to Idlib Gate, a former department store that had been turned into a meeting hall. A small crowd was milling about: local journalists, election monitors, and suited dignitaries who, in international circles, represented the Syrian opposition. The election was meant to choose the leader of the Local Council, a civilian body that governed the town. Poll workers checked their phones for reports of air traffic: Syrian and Russian jets were known to attack public gatherings, and activists had posted sentries around the province.

We are told that this one town, Saraqib, is really standing out:

One Syrian town after another fell out of government control, and from this anarchy new horrors arose. The flags of ISIS and Al Qaeda were raised across the country. Child refugees drowned at sea; Western hostages were murdered on camera.
...
Somehow, Saraqib had avoided this fate. It offered an alternative history for the entire Syrian conflict—and, Hossein believed, its citizens embodied the true soul of the revolution. That evening, he imagined other tiny democracies flowering across Syria, and the rest of the world coming to understand, at last, that his country had more to offer than bloodshed and tragedy.

In reality "an alternative history" is not what happened to Saraqib, but what is presented in the New Yorker piece. It is a whitewash of a brutal international attack on Syria. A hagiography of one Osama al-Hossein, a Muslim Brotherhood 'activist', who got funding from the United States. It includes every false propaganda cliche about 'barrel bombs' and 'moderate rebels', who never were moderate, that the 'western' agencies inserted into the news stream. It is also full of stupid and nonfactual assertions. How, for example, did the New Yorker fact checkers let these 'Humvees' pass by:

Cont. reading: Whitewash - The 'Last Bastion Of Freedom' Is An Al-Qaeda Infested Town

Posted by b at 09:13 AM | Comments (97)

December 05, 2018

Open Thread 2018-65

News & views ...

Posted by b at 12:41 PM | Comments (165)

December 04, 2018

Fundraiser - Please Support Moon of Alabama

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Moon of Alabama provides news and analysis which mainstream media cover late or not at all. This site is free. It serves original thought and no-nonsense analysis on a (nearly) daily basis. It has an open and lively comment section. It is the full-time effort of this single person.

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The growing readership of the blog and your feed back keep me going. But I also need to eat and pay rent. I have no other income. Each donation to this Poor Poet, be it $5, $50 or $500, is welcome and urgently needed. A recurring contribution or sponsorship would be great.

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Thank you!

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Posted by b at 11:55 AM | Comments (67)

Reuters Creates Fakenews About Iran - Intentionally Conflates Two Different Missiles - Misquotes Official

A just published Reuters piece claims:

    Iran wants to expand missile range despite U.S. opposition.


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That claim is false and is based on a willful misrepresentation of the source Reuters cites.

GENEVA (Reuters) - Iran wants to increase its missiles’ range, a senior military official was quoted as saying on Tuesday, a move that would irk the United States which views Tehran’s weapons program as a regional security threat.

U.S. President Donald Trump pulled out of an international nuclear agreement in May and reimposed sanctions on the Islamic Republic, criticizing the deal for not including curbs on Iran’s development of ballistic missiles.

“One of our most important programs is increasing the range of missiles and ammunition,” said the head of the Iranian air force, Brigadier General Aziz Nasirzadeh, according to the semi-official Fars news agency.

“We don’t see any limitations for ourselves in this field.”

Iran’s military has cited 2,000 km (1,240 miles) as the current missile range, and said U.S. bases in Afghanistan, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar, plus U.S. aircraft carriers in the Gulf, were within range.

The Reuters piece conflates ground launched ballistic missiles with air-to-air missiles that the air force commander wants to develop. The U.S. does not care about Iran's air-to-air missiles. It itself has far superior ones. The U.S. does care about Iran's ballistic missiles. But the Iranian general did not talk about those at all. The quote Reuters attributes to the Iranian general it is taken out of context and used to propagandize a non-issue.

The FARS piece Reuters cites is absolutely clear with what the air force commander means, even while its headline is probably too generalized:

Cont. reading: Reuters Creates Fakenews About Iran - Intentionally Conflates Two Different Missiles - Misquotes Official

Posted by b at 11:50 AM | Comments (35)

Syria - 'Activist' Posts Fake Picture - Fact Checkers Fall For It

The war on Syria brought up dozens of propagandist. Asaad Hanna is one of them. His screeds were published in the disgraced Guardian, on TRT World, Time, AL-Monitor and elsewhere. He is introduces himself as "a Syrian civil society and human rights activist and an economics graduate from Damascus University" and as "a member of the Free Syria Army Northern Division's political office".

Yesterday at 9:46 utc he tweeted a picture:


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The Syria Campaign is the U.S. organization that runs the Al-Qaeda clean-up and propaganda squad the White Helmets. It copied the photo from Asaad Hanna's earlier tweet and tweeted it as if it were the original source.

The Syria Campaign Verified account @TheSyriaCmpgn - 14:34 utc - 3 Dec 2018

A brave person took this photo from central Damascus. It shows chained young men being watched by a regime soldier. The photo has gone viral among Syrians with many saying the men were being forcibly conscripted into the army. Is this the safety Assad promises the Syrian people?

Cont. reading: Syria - 'Activist' Posts Fake Picture - Fact Checkers Fall For It

Posted by b at 04:38 AM | Comments (25)

December 03, 2018

The People Of France Reject Macron's Policies - How Long Can He Survive?

The current wave of protests in France, which started two weeks ago, is growing in impact and applied violence. On Saturday some 120,000 people took part in demonstrations around the country. The movement was initiated from the political right but many other parties also support it. Most of the participants seem to take part spontaneously. The movement is supposedly leaderless. But it is too early to exclude that there is some larger organizing power behind it.

In short: The Arab spring arrived in Europe.


"The people demand the fall of the regime." - bigger

Like the 1968 May protests that started in Paris this new movement will have echos in other countries.


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While mostly peaceful protest were held in all parts of France the situation in Paris caught the most attention. On Saturday the protesters stormed the Arc de Triomphe. They rearranged the interior, damaged a statue of Marianne, and redecorated the outside.

Cont. reading: The People Of France Reject Macron's Policies - How Long Can He Survive?

Posted by b at 03:21 PM | Comments (139)

December 02, 2018

The MoA Week In Review - OT 2018-64

Last week's posts on Moon of Alabama:

A former German Foreign Minister, Siegmar Gabriel, warned that the Ukraine is trying to pull others into its war:

"I think we should not let Ukraine draw us into a war, and Ukraine tried to do that," Gabriel said in an interview, voicing concerns over the situation in the Sea of Azov.

Robert Fisk has the same concern expressed in the above piece and an earlier one. It is Trump's Middle East policy, build around Saudi Arabia, that will bring him down:

So I have a prediction. If the Trump regime collapses – for regime it is – I suspect it will not be his frolics with the Russians which destroy it. Nor his corruption, nor his domestic lies. Nor his misogyny. Nor his anti-immigrant racism. Nor his obvious mental instability, though this clearly connects him to his friends in the Arab world. The Middle East has already got its coils into the White House. Trump is a friend of a highly dangerous state called Saudi Arabia. He has adopted Israeli foreign policy as his own, including the ownership of Jerusalem and wholehearted support for Israel’s illegal colonisation of Palestinian Arab land. He has torn up a solemn treaty with Iran. He has joined the Sunni side in its sectarian war with the Shias of the Middle East, in Iran, in Lebanon, in Syria, in Bahrain and, of course, in Saudi Arabia itself.
...
[T]he Arabs and Muslims who live in territory which many of the American supporters call the holy land may well decide his future; after all, he thinks he can decide theirs.

Use as open thread ...

---
This is a Moon of Alabama fundraiser week.
No one pays me to write these blog posts. If you appreciated this one, or any of the 7,000+ others, please consider a donation.

Posted by b at 09:34 AM | Comments (104)

December 01, 2018

What Poroshenko Gets Wrong - H.W. Bush And The Ukraine

Earlier this week Petro Poroshenko, the president of Ukraine, tried to provoke a war with Russia in attempt to stay in power by cancelling the upcoming elections.

Today he attempts to curry favor in the U.S. with remarks about the death of the former U.S. President George H.W. Bush.

Петро Порошенко @poroshenko - 10:59 utc - 1 Dec 2018

The former US President George W. Bush passed away. True leader and statesman. This man - the legend, under whose presidency the world saw the end of the Cold War. This man - the era, who then witnessed the restoration of Ukraine’s independence.


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Poroshenko not only mourned the wrong President Bush, he also mislead about the historic record. Bush the first indeed "witnessed the restoration of Ukraine’s independence". But it happened against his strong advice.

Bush had feared that the Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev was too weak, and that a dissolution of the Soviet Union would end in utter chaos. He traveled to Moscow and Kiev in an attempt to keep the union together. On August 1, 1991, months before a December referendum in which the Ukraine voted to withdraw from the Soviet Union, he visited Kiev and held a speech in the Ukrainian parliament.

The core sentences:

Cont. reading: What Poroshenko Gets Wrong - H.W. Bush And The Ukraine

Posted by b at 12:24 PM | Comments (91)

November 30, 2018

Seeing Social Decline As A National Security Threat May Change Conservative Policies

Micah Zenko, previously at the Council on Foreign Relations and now at Chatham House, is one of the sane analysts of U.S. security policies.

His tweet was in response to the 2017 CDC report on mortality in the United States. Its key findings include:

  • Life expectancy for the U.S. population declined to 78.6 years in 2017.
  • The age-adjusted death rate increased by 0.4% from 728.8 deaths per 100,000 standard population in 2016 to 731.9 in 2017.
  • Age-specific death rates increased from 2016 to 2017 for age groups 25–34, 35–44, and 85 and over, and decreased for the age group 45–54.

Last year was the third year in a row that life expectancy in the United States decreased and mortality increased.

This only happened once before between 1915 to 1918. The cause was the Spanish Flu, which alone killed 675,000 people in the United States, and the 1st World War. That drop in life expectancy was extremely sharp but so was the rise that followed when the epidemic and war were over. The current phenomenon is different.

For a '1st world' country like the U.S. one would expect that life expectancy increases each year because of scientific progress in medicine, a cleaner environment, a reduction of accidents and the absence of large epidemics and war. An increase is what we see in other developed countries. It is only the U.S. that experiences such a decline and that fall does not come from a high level. In the 2015 WHO and UN lists of life expectancy by country the U.S. ranks as number 31 and 43. The new data will likely take it even lower.

The main causes of the current decline are an increase in overdoses from opioids and a higher suicide rates:

Since 1999, the number of drug overdose deaths has more than quadrupled. Deaths attributed to opioids were nearly six times greater in 2017 than they were in 1999.
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Overall, suicides increased by a third between 1999 and 2017, the report showed. In urban America, the rate is 11.1 per 100,000 people; in the most rural parts of the country, it is 20 per 100,000.

It is not only life expectancy that shows the U.S. as a-not-so healthy country. Maternal and infant mortality also increased during the last decade and are much higher than in other developed countries. All these social indicators describe a society in decline.

Absent of war the only other industrialized country which experienced a long drop in such social indicators was Russia in the early 1990s.

Cont. reading: Seeing Social Decline As A National Security Threat May Change Conservative Policies

Posted by b at 03:35 PM | Comments (107)

November 29, 2018

This Guardian Fake News Story Proves That The Media Can't Be Trusted

In 2015 the British Guardian appointed Katherine Viner as editor in chief. Under her lead the paper took a new direction. While it earlier made attempts to balance its shoddier side with some interesting reporting, it is now solidly main stream in the worst sense. It promotes neo-liberalism and a delves into cranky identity grievances stories. It also became an main outlet for manipulative propaganda peddled by the British secret services.

Its recent fake news story about Paul Manafort, Wikileaks and Julian Assange aptly demonstrates this. The documentation of it is a bit lengthy but provides that it was a willful fake.

On November 27 the Guardian prepared to publish a story which asserted that Paula Manafort, Trump's former campaign manager, had met Julian Assange, the publisher of Wikileaks, in the Ecuadorian embassy in London on at least three occasions. Some two hours before the story went public it contacted Manafort and Assange's lawyers to get their comments.

Assange's Wikileaks responded through its public Twitter account which has 5.4 million followers. On of those followers is Katherine Viner:

WikiLeaks @wikileaks - 13:06 utc - 27 Nov 2018

SCOOP: In letter today to Assange's lawyers, Guardian's Luke Harding, winner of Private Eye's Plagiarist of the Year, falsely claims jailed former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort had secret meetings with Assange in 2013, 2015 and 2016 in story Guardian are "planning to run".

It attached the email the Guardian's Luke Harding had send.


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90 minutes later the Guardian piece went life. It led the front page and also appeared in print.


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Cont. reading: This Guardian Fake News Story Proves That The Media Can't Be Trusted

Posted by b at 10:23 AM | Comments (91)

November 28, 2018

If The Saudi's Oil No Longer Matters Why Is Trump Still Supporting Them?

Why are U.S. troops in the Middle East?

In an interview with the Washington Post U.S. President Donald Trump gives an answer:

Trump also floated the idea of removing U.S. troops from the Middle East, citing the lower price of oil as a reason to withdraw.

“Now, are we going to stay in that part of the world? One reason to is Israel,” Trump said. “Oil is becoming less and less of a reason because we’re producing more oil now than we’ve ever produced. So, you know, all of a sudden it gets to a point where you don’t have to stay there.”

It is only Israel, it is no longer the oil, says Trump.  But the nuclear armed Israel does not need U.S. troops for its protection.

And if it is no longer the oil, why is the U.S. defending the Saudis?

Trump's Secretary of State Mike Pompeo disagrees with his boss. In a Wall Street journal op-ed today he claims that The U.S.-Saudi Partnership Is Vital because it includes much more then oil:

[D]egrading U.S.-Saudi ties would be a grave mistake for the national security of the U.S. and its allies.

The kingdom is a powerful force for stability in the Middle East. Saudi Arabia is working to secure Iraq’s fragile democracy and keep Baghdad tethered to the West’s interests, not Tehran’s. Riyadh is helping manage the flood of refugees fleeing Syria’s civil war by working with host countries, cooperating closely with Egypt, and establishing stronger ties with Israel. Saudi Arabia has also contributed millions of dollars to the U.S.-led effort to fight Islamic State and other terrorist organizations. Saudi oil production and economic stability are keys to regional prosperity and global energy security.

Where and when please has Saudi Arabia "managed the flood of refugees fleeing Syria’s civil war". Was that when it emptied its jails of violent criminals and sent them to wage jihad against the Syrian people? That indeed 'managed' to push millions to flee from their homes.

Cont. reading: If The Saudi's Oil No Longer Matters Why Is Trump Still Supporting Them?

Posted by b at 03:12 PM | Comments (61)