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February 13, 2015

Open Thread 2015-08

News & views NOT related to current events in Ukraine.

For commenting on current events in Ukraine please go here.

Posted by b on February 13, 2015 at 18:17 UTC | Permalink

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US-NATO war games prepare massive military escalation in West Africa


Participating militaries include Mauritania, the Netherlands, Burkina Faso, Denmark, Belgium, Sweden, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Norway, Senegal, Spain, Great Britain, Mali, Czech Republic, Estonia, Lithuania and the US.

Statements from US and African military leaders make clear that the war simulations could transition to actual fighting against Boko Haram and other forces at any time. Asked about possible clashes between participating forces and Boko Haram, Special Operations Command Africa representative Bardha Azari said, “Our troops are fully prepared to handle everything.”

“Nothing is being ruled out or ruled in. These discussions are really just starting,” US Rear Admiral Kirby similarly commented Friday in response to questions about new US troop deployments to Nigeria and surrounding countries.

The launch of massive US-led war games in West Africa comes just days after Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan called for US troop deployments to Nigeria, home to the second largest proven oil reserves in all of Africa, after Libya.


As its 'work' in Ukraine implodes, NATO makes a grab for northwestern-central Africa.

Posted by: jfl | Feb 17 2015 23:26 utc | 101

whatever happens to the ebola pandemic global threat ?

https://birdflu666.files.wordpress.com/2015/02/ebola_vaccines_open_letter-pdf.pdf

Posted by: denk | Feb 18 2015 2:45 utc | 102

CNN/ORC poll: Most Americans oppose Netanyahu invite


A large majority of Americans believe that Republican congressional leaders should not have invited Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to speak to Congress ... shows 63% of Americans say it was a bad move for congressional leadership to extend the invitation without giving President Barack Obama a heads up that it was coming ... Americans overall believe the U.S. should stay out of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, with 66% in the new poll advocating the U.S. remain neutral ... 56% of those age 50 or older believe the U.S. should stay out of the Israeli-Palestinian fight, that number skyrockets to 75% of Americans under age 50.

The worm has turned. The immediate cause for the collapse of apartheid Israel's support in the US will go down as Boehner's Boner ... but Netanyahoo deserves most of the credit for making Israel the despised, genocidal pariah it has become, now even in the US of A.

And of course ... that view already obtaining in every country BUT the US of A ... it's the end for Israel. Netanyahoo and Boner have killed the goose that laid the golden egg.

As Noam Chomsky is fond of pointing out, apartheid South Africa could ignore the opprobrium of the entire world just as long as it had the US of A on its side ... but fell in about 1 NY minute once it lost US support. There are probably about 50 seconds left in apartheid Israel's 1 NY minute now.

Well, Chomsky was speaking about 'real' US support - arms and UN vetos - and Israel still has that.

But it won't take long now that popular support for the apartheid state has disappeared in the polls for 'real' support to disappear as well. So although the official minute has not started to be consumed ... but the countdown has officially started now.

Posted by: jfl | Feb 18 2015 7:55 utc | 103

US Will Let Syrian Rebels Call In Airstrikes


The US intends to provide every cell of 4-6 rebel fighters with a pickup truck that will include a mounted machine gun and a GPS system within, through which they can radio in targets to be attacked by US warplanes.

What's been keeping ISIS from exporting terror in big way has been its lack of an air force ... now, no longer a problem.

It now has the USAF at its beck and call.

Posted by: jfl | Feb 18 2015 7:59 utc | 104

@101

US-NATO war games prepare massive military escalation in West Africa


US and NATO forces launched massive war games Monday in West Africa, in tandem with a slate of African militaries.

Participating militaries include Mauritania, the Netherlands, Burkina Faso, Denmark, Belgium, Sweden, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Norway, Senegal, Spain, Great Britain, Mali, Czech Republic, Estonia, Lithuania and the US.

Asked about possible clashes between participating forces and Boko Haram, Special Operations Command Africa representative Bardha Azari said, “Our troops are fully prepared to handle everything.”

“Nothing is being ruled out or ruled in. These discussions are really just starting,” US Rear Admiral Kirby similarly commented Friday in response to questions about new US troop deployments to Nigeria and surrounding countries.

The launch of massive US-led war games in West Africa comes just days after Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan called for US troop deployments to Nigeria, home to the second largest proven oil reserves in all of Africa, after Libya.


No doubt they'll have recourse to the US biowarfare 'labs' in West Africa if they feel they need them. Again.

Posted by: jfl | Feb 18 2015 8:08 utc | 105


jfl 104

ebolagate scare kills four birds with one stone...
*prepping the sheeples for police state at home and one world govn world wide.
*disrupting chinese investments in africa
*facilitate recolonisation of africa thru africom,
*last but not least, follow the money...big pharma.


*No doubt they'll have recourse to the US biowarfare 'labs' in West Africa if they feel they need them. Again.*

yeah if ever they need to escalate the ebola scare again the *tools* are always right at hand.

daylight robbery playing out right before our very eyes on a daily basis.

Posted by: denk | Feb 18 2015 13:48 utc | 106

Obama’s Legacy: Permanent War and Liberal Accommodation?


The fact that the U.S. President could launch military attacks in Syria, supposedly a sovereign state and member of the United Nations, for six months without any legal justification and not face fierce criticism in the U.S. and internationally demonstrates the embrace of lawlessness that characterizes the current epoch of Western imperialist domination.

And the acquiescence of much of the left in the U.S. and Europe on the issue of Syria and the U.S. supported coup in Ukraine reveals the moderating and accommodating forces within the faux left that attempts to bully and intimidate anti-imperialist critics.


The Norwegians certainly got their $1.4 million dollars worth.

WAR IS PEACE!

You'd have thought it would take more than a measly million four to make that ring 'true', wouldn't you?

They did it though. Barack the Nihilist Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Obama, a man who should be in prison and the key to his cell thrown away, is instead still in the Whitehouse! And still devastating countries and killing their peoples.

WAR IS PEACE! ... FREEDOM IS SLAVERY! and IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH!

Posted by: jfl | Feb 18 2015 17:05 utc | 107


French government forces through austerity measures without vote in parliament


French Prime Minister Manuel Valls’ government yesterday forced through an unpopular bill imposing large-scale liberalization of the French economy without a parliamentary vote. Instead, Valls used the anti-democratic provision 49-3 of the French Constitution, which allows the executive to force the National Assembly to either adopt the bill or bring down the government.

The French people .. like Syriza, like Podemaos ... need to stand up on their hind legs and bring the government down. They needn't start a civil war as in Ukraine. Yet.

Posted by: jfl | Feb 19 2015 0:51 utc | 108

Former Panther Minister of Defense Speaks on Malcolm X's Legacy


He [Malcolm X] was very into resident organizing, in the community, around community control. He talked about organizing after the republicans and the democrats, but independent source to control the community, but he also talked about having the ability to protect the community, to defend the community. And use the community's resources to strengthening and enhance the community, I think today it’s protest, and the young people engage in that kind of activities.

They need to take a page from his book and move forward to building the foundation and broadening this particular face of the struggle into an international effort, take this issue to UN as some people had already done, and at the same time reach out into the Caribbean, and African Americans, but also activists, environmentalists, etc... and form and develop allies and move forward.

--Marshall “Eddie” Conway, the former Minister of Defense of the Baltimore Chapter of the Black Panther Party


As the Assembly of the Poor here in Thailand wrote on the assassination of Thai farmers by Thai agribusiness using the Royal Thai Army ...

Statement of Assembly of the Poor Condemning the Use of Violence against the Poor to Protect the Capitalists’ Interests


We do not have any demand to NPCO. We would only like to call on to people from all walks of life to oust the NPCO if the NPCO does not immediately return the sovereignty back to people.

The NPCO or NCPO, some oxymoron like the National Council for Peace and Order ... the Dictatorship headed by the most recent coupster, Prayuth Chan-o-cha, is crushing the Thai people, has invaded and occupied Isaan, is illegally projecting and protecting an American gas company's drilling rigs there and grabbing the peoples' land and dispossessing the peoples in doing so.

In southern Thailand they are assassinating local farmers protesting the smash and grab tactics of local palm-oil goons, like Suthep Thaugsuban, the 'Democrat Party' thug who orchestrated the overthrow of the last elected government by the Royal Thai Army knuckle draggers, the present gang in possession in Thailand.

Asking for change is fruitless. Effecting change on the ground, in the precincts, is essential.

I read a week or so ago that in Ferguson there were council seats unclaimed in the the last election there. No one ran.

What would Malcolm say? What would Malcolm do?

Posted by: jfl | Feb 19 2015 1:13 utc | 109

Argentina Tells US, Israel to Stay out of Its Affairs


White House spokesman Josh Earnest said Wednesday that the U.S. government is “concerned” about the rule of law in Argentina, after the death of prosecutor Alberto Nisman.

Argentine officials say the United States and Israel – who had been feeding information to Nisman prior to his death – are using the South American country as a site of confrontation with Iran.

"I can go to any country in the world, including those who launch missiles and have secret prisons, stand in front of them and say that here reigns the law and no Argentine can be detained except by a judge and if there is in effect the constitutional guarantees," Fernandez said.


Obama and the CIA never give up. Institutionalized hypocrisy is the Nihilist Nobel Peace Prize Laureate's most salient contribution to American politics. The CIA, the NSA, USAID and the NED ... all need to be put down, permanently.

Posted by: jfl | Feb 19 2015 1:21 utc | 110

@106

Ebolagate ... at first I thought it was a verb ... to devour by virus, like an alligator ... snap, snap ... and we four more birds disappear down it's gullet. Now I cannot shake that image. Ebolagator, ebolagated, ebolagation ... we humans are visually oriented creatures. Thanks for the image. It haunts me. It's apt.

Posted by: jfl | Feb 19 2015 1:27 utc | 111

When USreal expresses 'concern' -- bad things happen.

Posted by: Benu | Feb 19 2015 1:28 utc | 112

Phase I of the plan now completed. The Kyiv Post has Poroshenko's statement from earlier today. He is shocked, shocked to find a cease-fire violation.

I can inform now that this morning the armed forces of Ukraine together with the National Guard completed the operation on the planned and organized withdrawal of a part of units from Debaltseve. We can say that 80 percent of troops have been already withdrawn....

We can assert that the armed forces of Ukraine have fulfilled their tasks completely....

We were asserting and proved: Debaltseve was under our control, there was no encirclement, and our troops left the area in a planned and organized manner with all the heavy weaponry: tanks, armored personnel carriers, self-propelled artillery and vehicles....

As I promised, they repelled those who tried to encircle them and left Debaltseve pursuant to my command, which I gave yesterday....

We are holding the new defense lines. In the course of my negotiations with leaders of the United States and the EU, I demanded a firm reaction from the world to Russia's brutal violation of the Minsk agreements, the ceasefire regime and the withdrawal of heavy weaponry. We will prepare organized and coordinated actions together.

Mind you, KP has a link on this page to Escape from Debaltseve: Ukraine's soldiers tell how they got out alive. Photo caption sums it up: "Ukrainian soldiers retreat from Debaltseve on Feb. 18. President Petro Poroshenko said he gave the order to retreat on Feb. 17, but soldiers on the ground claim they were simply left in a trap under the fire of Russian troops."

Sounds like Poroshenko has a plan, perhaps one conveniently provided to him by his patrons. "Firm reaction... coordinated actions together."

Phase II -- Washington reacts. Round up the usual suspects. Excoriation by the hired help, aka, journalists & policy wonks. Money thrown at friends, cronies, contractors. Has a red line been crossed? Well, time to "raise the cost" for Russia. Training is already in the pipeline, fresh arms would complement that nicely, no?

Posted by: rufus magister | Feb 19 2015 2:21 utc | 113

In Chicago, a man with a magic name - and one who adds to its lustre on his own - takes on Obama's first pick: Israeli Rahm Emanuel as chief of staff, now the mayor of Chicago.

Time for change, bottom up.

Since Rahm - who is wringing Chicago like a sponge for the TNCs - brings the 'international flavor' to Chicago politics, the opposition's drawing parallels between itself and the 'world's poorest president' - and to Syriza, too, for good measure, holding its ground - can't hurt either.

Posted by: jfl | Feb 19 2015 3:18 utc | 114

Looks like ol' Wesley "Loose Lips" Clark finally admits that ISIS was created by "our friends and allies" to destroy Hezbollah.

Posted by: guest77 | Feb 19 2015 3:29 utc | 115

For Fuck's sake: A comment in a story about ISIS beheading the Copts -

Jasmine, New York City, United States, about 12 hours ago

Sponsored by China

And it had 21 upvotes! Unbelievable, the level of either stupidity or cynicism prevalent in the west. "Jasmine" is either an insipid idiot, a CIA shill, or something. But to call ISIS sponsored by China is truly the stupidest thing I've seen in ages.

Posted by: guest77 | Feb 19 2015 3:51 utc | 116

Another - just after:


Bombing ISIS...okay! But should the west not be looking for the sources from whence ISIS acquire their armaments? When identified...that's where the bombs need to go! The first thing to do surely, is to dry-up the arms supply. Some international armament manufactures are making a mint out of this! Who are they? Where are they? Put them out of business....or is that against the 'fair trade' rules or the TPP partnership?? Constructive comments please!!

And the reply:


Man on a Soapbox, London, United Kingdom, 13 hours ago

Turkey, Russia, China.

WTF. Is there a campaign underway to convince idiots that black is white? Obviously so.

Posted by: guest77 | Feb 19 2015 3:54 utc | 117

jfl 111

here's the source of *ebolagate*.

*It's very much what Jane Burgermeister suspected about Dr. Thomas and how weird he was on the downed flight MH370.
(Do they ever do just one thing when they do harm?) [1]

exactly,
one stone killing four birds. [ebolagate]
sobs always aim for the biggest bang per buck when they perpetrate a ff.

i counted six or was it seven birds in the mh370 ff.
but now the malaysian govn had declared mh370 an *accident* [my ass]

najib n co knew it was a fucking ff alright, dr mahathir even insinuated cia's complicity.
so why'r the malaysians changing their tunes now ?
co-opted or blackmail ?
i'd go for blackmail.
i dont blame them, three planes lost in one yr and they couldnt do shit !
they must be saying enuff is enuff.

[1]
http://exopolitics.blogs.com/ebolagate/2014/11/ebolagate-the-martians-are-coming-the-martians-are-coming-.html

Posted by: denk | Feb 19 2015 4:08 utc | 118

Sorry if someone has brought this up before. I found out about it at a Russian news site.

Breitbart: CIA Headquarters in Langley Reportedly on Lockdown

That is very strange, as Inspector Clouseau would say.

Posted by: Demian | Feb 19 2015 6:18 utc | 119

Ford now says the Syrian rebels are bad guys. So when their plans don't work out, they can just say they were mistaken?
http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2015/02/18/257024/once-a-top-booster-ex-us-envoy.html

Posted by: Mina | Feb 19 2015 6:29 utc | 120

mcohen at 82 --

I had a look at the Wiki on Bolano's life and work, fascinating character. I don't read a lot fiction, but I do like short stories and novellas, so I might pick something up.

I cued up "Caravanserai" on YouTube. All quality fusion, more of an edge than Pat Metheny. "Just in Time to see the Sun," "Every Step of the Way," esp. nice. I think my favorite was Song of the Wind. There's a live version from Edinburgh, this had better visuals over the original album cut.

Posted by: rufus magister | Feb 20 2015 3:12 utc | 121

@73

I still can't seem to find anyplace that has copies of Covert Action Information Bulletin though. Anyone got any leads?

Posted by: guest77 | Feb 15, 2015 10:18:34 PM | 73

I've never been able to find digital copies anywhere either. But you got me going and I found a guy in Washington DC who has all 78 issues for $165 ... original issues for the most part, 'Approximately a dozen of the back-issues are out-of-print, and are therefore being reproduced in high-quality photocopy format as part of the full back-issue set', and maybe he'll come down a bit on the price ... but it'd probably cost that again to ship them to Thailand. I'd like to scan and transcribe them using OCR, eliminate the problem once and for all. Maybe we could work together somehow? write me at jfmxl at yahoo dot com if you're interested.

Posted by: jfl | Feb 25 2015 12:36 utc | 122

There is an interesting document being peddled by Novaya Gazeta, purportedly a memo from Konstantin Malofeyev, a Russian oligarch with connections to the Orthodox Church and likely "voentorg" contributor. I came across it first at Kyiv Post, which has a semi-abridged version posted. It could pass for the hard-boiled prose of a typical foreign policy/national security flunky.

Reporting by The Daily Beast and on what's left of Newsweek is recommended for informational purposes only. No warranties, expressed or implied.

I would note two points, however. This is from The Daily Beast's account. I personally do not find this reassuring as to authenticity, which assuredly will become an item of some media speculation. "According to the paper’s deputy editor, Sergei Sokolov. Novaya Gazeta does not have conclusive material evidence but does have 'a strong sense' from its source that Putin reviewed the document in February 2014."

And that Newsweek reports that the purported author, through a spokesman "'categorically denied' his alleged involvement... Malofeev’s representative told the paper [Novaya Gazeta] he will pursue legal action because of their claims he is linked to the document."

Posted by: rufus magister | Feb 26 2015 3:50 utc | 123

@123 Rufus

That struck me as Swan Lake. Choreographed. The ballerina leaps high because she knows she will be caught safely ;-)

Posted by: Benu | Feb 26 2015 4:32 utc | 124

Benu at 124 -- Quite droll, and very much on point. The choreography is great, the soundtrack could be better though, too much Wagner. Our little dancer has no doubt been caught by the MSM by now. Cue the outrage, enters in great agitation from stage right.

Posted by: rufus magister | Feb 26 2015 5:21 utc | 125

jfl at 122 -- it will all be money well spent. I bought CAIB in the bookstores in Harvard Sq., in the 80's/90's, packed away somewhere. "Approximately a dozen of the back-issues are out-of-print, and are therefore being reproduced in high-quality photocopy format as part of the full back-issue set." This was the case even then, I wonder if it's someone from the editorial group, they were based in DC if memory serves.

Posted by: rufus magister | Feb 26 2015 5:31 utc | 126

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