Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
March 09, 2016

Ignatius, Off His Meds, Has Syria Delusions

The public relation functionary for the CIA, the Pentagon, Israel and the Saudis - David Ignatius of the Washington Post - forgot to take his meds. Thus he experienced an outbreak of acute delusions:

The campaign in eastern Syria is directed by about 50 U.S. Special Operations forces now on the ground there, joined by about 20 French and perhaps a dozen British commandos. They’re working with about 40,000 Syrian Kurdish and Arab fighters dubbed the Syrian Democratic Forces; all but about 7,000 are from the Syrian Kurdish militia known as the YPG.

Those numbers are waaay off. The more realistic numbers are some 10,000 YPG and some 1,000 Arabs. Even those numbers include lots of village guards that can not be counted on as soldiers. The core forces are in the low thousands.

U.S. commanders hope soon to augment the U.S. ground force in Syria to about 300 troops who can train and assist these fighters. With this broader U.S. base of operations inside Syria, it’s hoped that special forces from other countries, such as the United Arab Emirates, could play a role there.

Us.commanders may "hope" that they will be allowed 300 more forces on the ground. But I doubt that the Obama administration will now agree to such an escalation. It would risk to spoil the current understandings with the Russians. Likewise with the UAE contingent.

The next stage in the assault may come to the west of Raqqa. Syrian fighters backed by Turkish commandos appear poised to move south from Jarabulus, where the Euphrates River crosses from Turkey into Syria, toward the area around Manbij. Other U.S.-backed forces hold the Tishrin Dam, about 55 miles northwest of Raqqa. The Turkish-led campaign could finally close the gap in its border, through which the Islamic State has maintained its supply lines.

What a load of bollocks. The Turkish military has said laud and clear that will not commit any forces to Syria without an explicit UN mandate. No such mandate is likely to pass.

The "other U.S. backed forces" at the Tishirn Dam are YPG Kurds. The Turks have declared them to be terrorists and the Kurds see any Turkish soldier as their enemy. There is no way that they would let Turkish commandos pass towards Manbij. And why does Turkey need to invade Syria to close the "gap in its border"? How about closing the border on the Turkish side as is usual. Are there Mexican troops in Texas to close the southern U.S. border "gap"? If the Turks would invade through Jarablus their aim would be to protect their allies in the Islamic State, to keep the logistic line to it open and to fight the Kurds. The Ignatius take is completely off from any reality.

A limited southern push toward Raqqa was begun recently by a small unit of Jordanian and British special forces that captured a former regime outpost in southeastern Syria, close to the Iraqi and Jordanian borders.

Here is news Mr Ignatius. The "capture" of Al Tanaf crossing by some Jordanian trained Syrian "rebels" and with U.S. air support failed. The crossing is still in the hands of the Islamic State.

In Ignatius' fairy tale book the Syrian government forces and its allies are nowhere to be seen fighting against the Islamic State. But is the Syrian Arab Army and its allies who are squeezing the Islamic State from the west and the south with the current attacks on Palmyra, south-east of Aleppo and towards Tabqa. It is the Syrian army that is defending some 200,000 civilians which are besieged in Deir Ezzor. It is the Syrian army that just launched a big operation in the south-eastern desert that will clear the approaches towards Raqqa and Deir Ezzor.

A sane policy discussion on Syria will never take place in the U.S. when the news consists of such insane fantasies.

Posted by b on March 9, 2016 at 14:46 UTC | Permalink


US citizens live in the matrix of propaganda, the official party line of Washington dutifully spread by the 6 "news" corporations that control 90% of the US media.

Posted by: Perimetr | Mar 9 2016 15:13 utc | 1

Queue the apologists!

Deploy WMD! (Weapons of Mass Delusion):

Conflate, Mis-direct, Mis-construe.

We are the good guys! Defending our "interests in the region" (tyrannical religious allies). And true humanitarians (who support using extremists as a weapon). Trust us!

Hey look over there - it's the Trump & Hillary show!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Mar 9 2016 15:36 utc | 2

At first I mis-read the heading on b's piece as "Ignatieff," Off His Meds, Has Syria Delusions.

Well, he too, in this Feb. 10 R2P/humanitarian imperialist whine in David Ignatius's WaPo:

Back at Harvard after a disastrous dip into Canadian politics, M. Iggy of "empire lite" has gone empire heavy. He'd make a good SecState for Mrs. Clinton

Posted by: Captain Cook | Mar 9 2016 15:48 utc | 3

Poor old Dave, he's reminding me of Baghdad Bob. When the Syrian Arab Army and their allies mop up Our Qaeda and IS, poor old Dave will start shouting "We won".
How sad and pathetic.

Posted by: Stephen | Mar 9 2016 16:17 utc | 4

Cleary Obama's puppeteers are determined to keep their grip on syria. SAA's only recourse is speed. The faster they take objectives, the fewer options the West will have

Posted by: aaaa | Mar 9 2016 16:29 utc | 5

from the link @ 3
This downward path leads to the truly incredible possibility that as the Syrian dictator and his ruthless backers close in on Aleppo, the government of the United States, in the name of the struggle against the Islamic State, will simply stand by while Russia, Assad and Iran destroy their opponents...

Posted by: okie farmer | Mar 9 2016 16:38 utc | 6

2;To conflate the hell bitch and the Donald is a sign of complete ignorance.
And maybe,thank God,it will be the BS Trump show.
The MSM are finally pointing out the discrepancy of the black vote for the hell bitch,but still won't call it what it really is, black anti semitism.
I imagine the Southern black vote being predominantly women,as most of the black males have been incarcerated out of voting rights.So they are voting against their own selves,in some kind of self hating femenazi seppeku.
Ignatius is sh*t.
What motivates Idahoans to vote for a Cuban Canadian anchor baby?Are they that evangelical lobotomized?I don't get it.Especially rethugs.

Posted by: dahoit | Mar 9 2016 16:46 utc | 7

One of the few good things about the War on Terror® (abetted by the internet and wider access to news) is that it's exposed just how thorough and deep the US media/propaganda system is. I wouldn't have believed it if I hadn't seen it myself.

Posted by: NoOneYouKnow | Mar 9 2016 16:47 utc | 8

dahoit @7:

I'm not conflating them. They are simply the leading contenders. I used their names for effect. I might've said the "duopoly show" (maybe I should've).

I thought it would be clear given the context: that the public is distracted by the Presidential race.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Mar 9 2016 16:56 utc | 9

There's quite a good article in the Guardian about the image of the Arab in American cinema. Could well explain a lot about US fantasies in the Middle East.

‘Death to the infidels!’ Why it’s time to fix Hollywood’s problem with Muslims

Posted by: Laguerre | Mar 9 2016 16:57 utc | 10

Well, let's hope that either the SAA/RuAF/etc. have crushed ISIS and al Qaeda by the end of the year or Trump is elected president.

Posted by: blowback | Mar 9 2016 17:23 utc | 11

thanks b... there's no fixing the whacked out usa optic machine that keeps anyone ignorant enough to follow it in complete ignorance...

@ 10 laguerre... another arm of the optic machine - hollywood - primarily run by jewish money which might explain some of this.

turkey could seal there borders but they have erdogan the mighty trying to further a sunni run caliph which includes sections of syria and iraq with him as head honcho... it partly explains why he is so chummy with the headchoppers from saudi arabia and continues to lob bombs on the kurds in syria.. sunni is now wahabbi light according to him.. isis is helping further his personal goals as opposed to those rascally kurds who have been all designated terrorists by him... another good terrorist, bad terrorist scenario that baked brain ignatius is probably onside with.. love these american bozo's or canuck transplanted wannabe amerikkkan bozos..

Posted by: james | Mar 9 2016 17:24 utc | 12

okie farmer @6
Perhaps you would tell me ow many native residents of Aleppo there are in the terrorist-occupied part of Aleppo and how many there are in the government-held part. I'd be interested to know if you really are as ignorant and stupid as your comment above suggests?

Posted by: blowback | Mar 9 2016 17:28 utc | 13

@13 blowback... that is a really out of characteristic comment from okie farmer which leads me to believe the name hijacking continues at moa...

Posted by: james | Mar 9 2016 17:37 utc | 14

Name high-jacking ... really?

The comment allegedly written by OkieFarmer is ironic given the states license plates ... a Jacksonian dumping place referred to as "Indian Territory." I know, the historical allusion just went 'whoof' over the heads of many. While it is not a bad thing that most people have forgotten the myth of the 'good' white man, and the 'bad' red man as taught by historians, it is NOT a good thing that we ignore our own national and cultural 'holocaust.'

Posted by: Rg an LG | Mar 9 2016 17:50 utc | 15

How to make money in Qatar click here

Posted by: QATAR BHK | Mar 9 2016 18:38 utc | 16

David Ignatius is apparently a stenographer for any Kagan who rings his phone.

He is not very different from his stablemates at NPR, NYT, and others who are referred to as reporters. They report that which they are instructed to report no matter how falsely contrived.

Posted by: fastfreddy | Mar 9 2016 19:02 utc | 17

"Current understandings" with the Obama administration. What a meaningless phrase.

I guess the US doesn't have plans to break up Syria after all, you know, because of "current understandings".
And from now on because of "current understandings", that will mean all hands off against Syrian sovreignity.

And opening new bases in Syria is just an innocent accident.

Posted by: tom | Mar 9 2016 19:19 utc | 18

Blowback @13

Okie farmer was quoting from the article. Not hos own opinion.

Posted by: Aboiteau | Mar 9 2016 19:27 utc | 19

NoOneYouKnow @ 8 - One of the few good things about the War on Terror® (abetted by the internet and wider access to news) is that it's exposed just how thorough and deep the US media/propaganda system is. I wouldn't have believed it if I hadn't seen it myself.

Agreed. I think it's the best thing about this whole story. Like one of those sudden foreground/background shifts in focus where we see the completely different picture that was always there, we often think we're talking in the terms of the vile propaganda, when actually we're detailing the vile propaganda in sharp relief.

I have to think this makes it easier for those who come after to have their own epiphanies some day, and have a well condensed, distilled and articulated truthful narrative at hand to absorb. If so, then each piece of hateful crap that gets deconstructed is another small, incremental step on the way to massive tipping points, hopefully not too far away.

Posted by: Grieved | Mar 9 2016 19:36 utc | 20

Many people consider themselves to be well-informed by reading Ignatius WP, and or NYT and/or listening to NPR and/or watching Fox News or CNN. Perhaps their use of the internet is limited to facebook and Yahoo News and Email. Any news which does not fit the MS paradigm is discounted as conspiracy theory (a propaganda term coined by the CIA used to discredit those who may question authority).

The PTB do have the majority eating from their palms.

Posted by: fastfreddy | Mar 9 2016 19:59 utc | 21

To #7: Idaho is full of Mormon republicans. And they vote for whomever the church elders (aka Mittens) tells then to.

David Ignatius is a long-time CIA mouth-piece. Goes WAYYY back. To his WSJ days. And as Obama is ALSO a CIA-groomed sockpuppet. Ignatius shills for him. There are MANY such sockpuppets embedded throughout USG, media, think-tanks, Wall Street, etc. At one time they were difficult to recognize. At least to the muppets. But during the last 5 years its like shooting fish in a barrel. Cuz they're easy to spot. Sockpuppet whack-a-mole. And David Ignatius has gotten hit on the head one too many times. He's rapidly loosing what little credibility he had.

One would expect a guy like Ignatius, who has an elevated opinion of himself, would loathe being a laughingstock. Idunno. Maybe sociopaths have severe hearing loss. Or can't read social cues. Or have trouble co-relating the "Fuk You" vote for Trump as something directly attributable to the lies they've been shilling for deep state masters. Cuz the laughter is now loud enough to drown out their lies. Lord knows we all dearly need a laugh.

Posted by: 4H | Mar 9 2016 20:04 utc | 22

I gotta wonder whether David Ignatius would be better off going back onto his meds and staying off them when Killary Klintonator always looks soaked up to her eyeballs on whatever pharmaceutical witches' brew she's currently taking.

Posted by: Jen | Mar 9 2016 21:21 utc | 23

@7 what on EARTH are you talking about? Black anti-semitism????

Posted by: aaaa | Mar 9 2016 21:22 utc | 24

I read commenters waking to the blatant propaganda like this and am saddened by the thoughts that we are at/near the tipping point. While I would love to believe that, where is the evidence supporting real change coming for our species?

I post here regularly about the need to eliminate private finance and neuter inheritance as the corner stones of "Western society". Others have their favorite social keystones they support and all that happens is more lipstick is applied to the pig of a social organization we have.

I keep hoping either for an alien invasion or a less than extinction kick in the ass from Gaia (Mother earth).

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 9 2016 21:33 utc | 25

re 12 James. The point is slightly more subtle than that. It is not that we muppets are being inundated by a sea of sludge propaganda from Hollywood. That of course happens. But rather apparently the NeoCons in power are convinced by the same stuff too. As it's the only environment you are faced with, even the powerful end up thinking that way.

Posted by: Laguerre | Mar 9 2016 21:35 utc | 26

This seemed to resonate with the times...

there is a feeling that 'something must be done' - which is not a good feeling, in general...

Cheers Fred

Posted by: fredjc | Mar 9 2016 22:08 utc | 27

I'm not sure you're reading the situation with the Turks right, b (no thanks to Ignatius' misleading spew).

Turkish Intelligence and Turkish Special Forces have been training and equipping Syrian Turkmen to do Turkey's bidding for them in Syria since at least last summer. 10,000 strong by reports back then. Syrian Turkmen forces were always part of the imaginary FSA before that crashed and burned, but the Syrian Turkmen also had their own collective side-army as it were that reported to the Syrian Turkmen Assembly.

The Turkmen battalions are primarily Syrian citizens from Turkmen areas of Syria, not Turkish nationals. But I'm sure they'll have plenty of 'guest' soldiers from Turkey fighting alongside them in the near future. They were never too concerned with al Nusra or ISIS. The Kurdish YPG has always been their primary enemy in Syria - Assad was just a temporary distraction.

There are plenty of ethnic Turkmen areas of Syria in and alongside Kurdish areas - they've lived together there for centuries. I don't think there's any special animosity among the little people Kurds and Turkmens. One exception may be the formerly Kurdish areas of northern Syria. Turkey had engaged in decades of ethnic cleansing in the northern border towns and had replaced many of the former Kurdish residents with Arabs and Turkmen. That's a cause of resentment at the political level (PYD party), but I don't think the average Kurd and Turkmen neighborhood farmers go at each other with pitchforks much. Militant Syrian Turkmen 'join' the Turkmen Army, but the majority (millions in Syria) are apolitical.

From this Now article, Syria Turkmen move to form anti-Kurd army:

...The Turkmen official’s comments came as the Syrian Turkmen Assembly held a meeting in southern Turkey’s Gaziantep that brought together Turkmen representatives from Aleppo, Tal Abyad, Jarabulus, Latakia, Idlib, Raqqa and the Golan..."

Gaziantep is the 'big city' where everything comes from that goes across the Kilis/Azaz border crossing or other parts of the defunct Safe Zone. The list of cities the 'representatives' came from is probably a pretty good laundry list of where Erdogan and Turkish Intelligence want to control Syrian territory via the Turkmen Army. They already launched a failed attack on the Kurds in Tal Abyad, reportedly *WITH* ISIS head-choppers and supported by Turkish heavy artillery. That attack was from the Turkish side, but had the head-choppers simultaneously attacking from the rear.

Turkey tries to expel Kurds from Tel Abyad crossing to help ISIS export its oil to black market’: Kurdish official

The attempt angered Russia and oddly enough was repelled with help from U.S. airstrikes. The fighters were described as Turkish commandos or Turkish Special Forces, but these were likely mostly local Turkmen trained and equipped by the above. See? No invasion - just Syrians fighting Syrians. I expect them to use this tactic in all the other cities mentioned above. This has nothing to do with ISIS and everything to do with land-grabbing, Turkish influence in 'liberated' cities and - of course - blocking any Kurdish expansion.

I'm pretty sure David Ignatius is confused (or intends to confuse) details of Syrian Turkmen efforts with the other ones.

For the U.S.'s part, I think you got the inflated SDF numbers right. The YPG would be interested in taking Tishreen (for electricity for Kobane), but I really wonder about their resolve for Manbij. That may be why the current effort is stalled - they can't find enough Kurds or Arabs willing to die to retake it. Looks like they'll have to hire some mercs... er, U.S. Special Forces... 300 or so. Yeah, that's it.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Mar 9 2016 23:47 utc | 28

Does Ignatius' inner-journalist ever blush when transcribing uninformed drivel?

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Mar 10 2016 0:10 utc | 29

Thank you b.

Rg and LG @ 15 , Quit spitting your hate and guilt at Americans. Your only claim to moral superiority seems to be thumping your chest and shouting "I care more about indians dead 200 years than you do." Try condemning actually guilty individuals who are alive today-- like TPTB. As it is, seems like you're on the side of today's murderers: You are really saying "You Americans don't have a right to defend yourselves or any aspect of your nation because the ancestors of some of you sinned." I guess that's one way of being on the side of today's murderers.

Tom @ 18, please remember b's our host. You might ASK him what he means instead of inventing a meaning for him, or accusing him. Ok?

Posted by: Penelope | Mar 10 2016 0:20 utc | 30

Everyone seen Lavrov's article on Historical Background to Russian Foreign Policy?

Posted by: Penelope | Mar 10 2016 0:50 utc | 31

Off-topic: According to his Wikipedia page,

"Billmon is the pseudonym of an American blogger who wrote commentary on various political and economic issues of the day from a left-wing perspective. His blog was called Whiskey Bar."

Now, from the blog above:

"What a load of bollocks. The Turkish military has said laud and clear that will not commit any forces to Syria without an explicit UN mandate."

This text appears to be written by someone for whom English is a second language, but also by someone who learned English from a Brit, i.e., by a non-British European. Not an American. The MoA blogs are signed "b" but since Billmon is American I must assume that is merely coincidence. The About section of MoA says that:

"Moon Of Alabama was opened as an independent, open forum for members of the Whiskey Bar community. Bernhard started and still runs the site. Once a while you will also find posts and art from regular commentators."

Since Bernhard starts with a "b" and is a German(ic) spelling of the name, I'll assume that the "b" who pens MoA is Bernhard.

My question at this point is, what is the exact relation between MoA and Billmon's Whiskey Bar blog, and who is Bernhard in relation to Billmon?

Posted by: Emil Pulsifer | Mar 10 2016 1:12 utc | 32

@26 laguerre... my general outlook in real life is to never underestimate others intelligence.. on the other hand on the internut i regularly shoot my mouth off and have been known to refer to neo-cons as essentially braindead - mostly cause they act braindead... if they are guilty of swallowing their own pablum - that shows the extremes arrogance can reach.. after watching a few videos of breedlovefreak, you might be right in your analysis... if these folks weren't directly on the payroll, i would be curious to know how they see it.. they seem to all have a vested interest in seeing things a particular way, as opposed to people like you and i who aren't profiting off any of this death cult neo con shit..

Posted by: james | Mar 10 2016 1:28 utc | 33

P.S. For a native English speaker, "laud", though an English word, is not homophonic to "loud", hence would not explain the mistake. (Even native English speakers who know better sometimes write "there" for ""their", but those words are homophones.) But for a native German speaker, "laud" (as pronounced by a speaker of German) would be homophonic with the English word "loud".

Posted by: Emil Pulsifer | Mar 10 2016 1:39 utc | 34

Mr. B., as a frustrated amateur sleuth, I am bound to ask, did you ever live in Kaliningrad?

Posted by: Emil Pulsifer | Mar 10 2016 1:52 utc | 35

@32 Definitely off topic. You got that part right.

Posted by: dh | Mar 10 2016 2:01 utc | 36

I found nothing particularly strange in the prognostications of Ignatius. Perhaps he watched too much of Pinky and the Brain, or was perhaps personally briefed by the duo. And fortified by a fresh load of Captagon he managed to pen a cheery piece.

Compare with David Brooks of NYT. His latest fantasy was not about the lands of tales of 1001 nights, where jinns are raised and carpets fly (take that, pigs!) but about the current status of the political party that he knows and loves, GOP. He stated with an astute observation that as the things are going, number one vote getter in GOP primaries is a certain Trump whom he detests, but the number two is the most hated person in the entire chamber of the Senate, and number three is a robot who failed the Turing test and now in vain tries to convince voters of his home state to vote for him (using and army of robocallers, I perceive a group solidarity there). But, here David waxes optimistic, there is also number four! Kasich who is personable, reasonable etc. If Trump, Cruz and Rubio managed to split the convention delegates with a majority for none, then blah blah. For all I know, Kasich can be saved by a joint Kurdish-Turkoman effort.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Mar 10 2016 3:22 utc | 37

Perhaps a minor point.
I take "meds". I'm a septuagenarian now and I still take them to deal with civilian PTSD and with past incidents of torture where I finally confessed to things I did't do and told of things I didn't know just to stop the pain.

The same entity repeated the same torture 40 years later on a psychological level. I knew what was going on all the time but people believed my torturer until a friend later intervened.

Now, for the last five years I am again being bullied and psychologically tortured by an organized gang of bullies on amateur radio. The FCC has done less than nothing and the FBI is still scratching their heads (Amateur Radio Goes across state lines). The Bullying continues.

However, I have never been delusional except to expect those government entities to enforce the law. The bullies attack my meds. I'm still standing up to them so, "I must be off my meds".

So: David Ignatius a full fledged highly paid lying propagandist. He is on the order of Julius Streicher. He has not earned and doesn't deserve to own the excuse that he is off his meds. Ignatius like Julius Streicher is a sociopath. Julius Streicher was tried by the Nuremberg Tribunal, found guilty, an executed by hanging. The same should happen to David Ignatius and his Ilk although considering their economic condition a Guillotine would be more appropriate.

Posted by: Adam Michaels | Mar 10 2016 3:55 utc | 38

how long before ep gets banned? i realize b's tolerance level is high given wow's continued presence, but a guy can fantasize..

Posted by: james | Mar 10 2016 5:10 utc | 39

"A top ISIS emir, Mahmoud Ahmad Al-Kaleezi, has been assassinated by unknown assailants in the Tabaqa Military airport on Mar.8. Al-Kaleezi is the third ISIS emir to be killed in the last 7 days."

source -

Posted by: ALberto | Mar 10 2016 5:14 utc | 40

@Penelope #31 - I've read the Lavrov article twice so far, and it's going to take at least another couple of reads before I feel I've absorbed the full measure of what he's saying. He's articulating an entire diplomatic school of thought for Russia. As the 100th anniversary of the Revolution draws closer I hope to hear more from this. It's so rich, so Russian in its wealth of raw resource.

For those who like to cite the source, it's at the ministry's website in English here: Sergey Lavrov’s article "Russia’s Foreign Policy: Historical Background" for "Russia in Global Affairs" magazine, March 3, 2016

Lavrov is one of the very best European diplomats we have. He offers the perspective of an evolving sanity and coherence, such as Europe has desperately yearned for through all of its many centuries. And Russia has always been there for that, and Europe has failed time and again to accept this fact. Russia is the best part of Europe, the unifying anchor.

But Russia, reaching as she does into so many parts of the world outside of the European ken, has often failed to take the time to articulate all this to Europe.

It seems to be happening now. Can it be that Russia has decided to talk to Europe within their common, 1,000-year history, and speak to it almost as to a child, barring no holds now, speaking plainly the truths of their indissoluble relationship? Lavrov offers the hope that this is so. I hope the foreign ministry of Russia in all its parts takes this essay as a textbook.

Somewhere in his picture of Europe united with Russia and thus with Asia, from Lisbon to Vladivostok as the old vision goes, one can even imagine the Americas, North and South, as being the western end of this union. He didn't say that, I drew it out of his clear implications that the US has no business destroying the unity between Europe and Russia, which is all the US has ever done, and which history gives absolutely no mandate for.

I know there are many more comments I want to make from this. If you have time and any immediate thoughts about his essay, I would love to hear them.

By the way, with regard to the respect, and perhaps even gratitude, that Europe owes to Russia, there's a great piece at Fort Russ right now, started by a Finnish blogger, detailing all the "bad' things that Russia should be "ashamed" of - which are of course another astonishing list of all the good things Russia has done for Europe in the last few centuries. The article and this title are sardonic, don't be offended, it's the complete opposite of what it suggests: A List of Crimes, Which Russians Committed Against the Civilized World

Posted by: Grieved | Mar 10 2016 5:41 utc | 41

Re 37 (" David waxes optimistic, there is also number four! Kasich who is personable, reasonable etc. If Trump, Cruz and Rubio managed to split the convention delegates with a majority for none, then blah blah."):

A brokered convention might not help Kasich, or any other alternative candidates, since by current GOP rules the nominee must have won at least eight states, which Kasich is unlikely to do, and alternatives picked from the blue cannot do. However, the rules also allow for a suspension of the rules (provided that the suspension process follows the rules), so who can say.

Posted by: Emil Pulsifer | Mar 10 2016 5:56 utc | 42

Some posts ago there were doubts about identity hijacking for Emil Pulsifer.

What the heck this incarnation of that nick is trying to discuss here?
Go, do your own research, take your own conclusions and report back to your boss.

We're not here to discuss that. Fuck you very much!

Posted by: citizen X | Mar 10 2016 6:01 utc | 43

Re 39 (" how long before ep gets banned?")

And why should I be banned, james? Because I point out the obvious? Because I'm not a reflexively pro-Russian (or anti-American) sycophant? Speaking of high-tolerances, I notice that you said nothing about the commenter immediately preceding you, instead singling me out. Or are you one of the ubiquitous "trolls" that seem to have made a hobby of provocative impersonations here of late?

Re 36 (" Definitely off topic. You got that part right.")

And which part did I get wrong? Is there some reason to shroud such elementary facts in mystery?

Posted by: Emil Pulsifer | Mar 10 2016 6:15 utc | 44

Re: Posted by: Adam Michaels | Mar 9, 2016 10:55:27 PM | 38

First off, take a chill pill mate - "off his meds" is a clearly cynically humourous phrase directed at the pill popping culture pushed on the proles by so-called "Big Pharma".

Saying someone is "off their meds" doesn't at all preclude the possiblity thay are a sociopath.

Perhaps a minor point. I take "meds". I'm a septuagenarian now and I still take them to deal with civilian PTSD and with past incidents of torture where I finally confessed to things I did't do and told of things I didn't know just to stop the pain.

The same entity repeated the same torture 40 years later on a psychological level. I knew what was going on all the time but people believed my torturer until a friend later intervened.

Who or what was this entity? Was it a bank?

Now, for the last five years I am again being bullied and psychologically tortured by an organized gang of bullies on amateur radio. The FCC has done less than nothing and the FBI is still scratching their heads (Amateur Radio Goes across state lines). The Bullying continues.

How can you be bullied over radio? Just switch the damn thing off.

I have people telling me off on social media all the time. I couldn't give a stuff.

Posted by: Julian | Mar 10 2016 6:20 utc | 45

in re 39, 12 --

I'm disappointed. No calls for my banning as well? I thought you, john, and the killer rabbit were a tag team.

Yeah, blame it on the Jews and their money. That doesn't sound anti-semitic. Much.

It's not like there's about 1500 years of bad blood between the two largest monotheisms. Or a long history of orientalism.

Emil Pulsifer --

I can't say that I've followed the exchanges that closely, but you certainly seem to annoying all the right people. Keep up the good work.

Posted by: rufus magister | Mar 10 2016 6:26 utc | 46

Re: Posted by: Grieved | Mar 10, 2016 12:41:54 AM | 41

Lavrov is one of the very best European diplomats we have.

He is indeed. Who would you rate as your top American diplomats?

I would contend that John Kerry is just about the only one of any profile who actually looks like a diplomat at times. Can you name any others?

his clear implications that the US has no business destroying the unity between Europe and Russia, which is all the US has ever done,

Yes indeed, but that is a hand-me down policy from the United Kingdom. It's worked for them for several centuries.

Keep the Germans (or French (or Spanish (or whomever))) down in Europe, and keep the Russians out.

Posted by: Julian | Mar 10 2016 6:27 utc | 47

Re 43 (" Some posts ago there were doubts about identity hijacking for Emil Pulsifer.")

Some posts ago (in fact, in the preceding thread) there were doubts about identity hijacking for rufus magister, wayoutwest, and numerous others over the last dozen threads or so.

" Go, do your own research, take your own conclusions and report back to your boss. We're not here to discuss that. Fuck you very much!"

You seem quite defensive and insecure. Also rather stupid. Do you imagine someone collecting intelligence would ask such blunt questions so artlessly, or be unable to use Internet tools to trace IP address and other data back to the source? Never mind the "feckless left", someone should write an essay about the paranoid left. Now stop annoying me with childish nonsense. I shouldn't have thought that a simple question like the one I asked would have provoked such a firestorm of controversy.

Posted by: Emil Pulsifer | Mar 10 2016 6:28 utc | 48

in re 38 --

I love irony -- complain about being bullied. Then call for the execution of Ignatius after comparing him to Streicher, no bullying there. Perhaps others were merely doing unto you what you had done to them.

Now I need my meds. A Dewars straight, Bartender, and make it double.

Posted by: rufus magister | Mar 10 2016 6:35 utc | 49

Re: Posted by: Emil Pulsifer | Mar 10, 2016 12:56:27 AM | 42

A brokered convention might not help Kasich, or any other alternative candidates, since by current GOP rules the nominee must have won at least eight states, which Kasich is unlikely to do, and alternatives picked from the blue cannot do. However, the rules also allow for a suspension of the rules (provided that the suspension process follows the rules), so who can say.

Yep, Kasich won't have a hope of being nominated on the first ballot, nor will Rubio obviously.

If that ballot is indecisive then it is effectively thrown open.

You'd have to think there is some chance of a Trump-Cruz unity ticket to achieve the required number of delegates or perhaps Trump-Kasich if that exceeds 1,237 delegates.

A candidate for President ruling out running as the VP at this stage of the process is obviously meaningless. The moment they say they are open to running as the VP they are admitting defeat and what's the point of voting for them?

I predict Trump will win Florida and Rubio will then withdraw from the race next week while Kasich will win Ohio and soldier on. Kasich will obviously hope that in a 3 man race he can grab a few states along the way to prove his relevance.

That is not impossible. At that point he would be effectively running as one side of the coin versus two outsiders splitting the other side.

Posted by: Julian | Mar 10 2016 6:37 utc | 50

rufass.. you and ep make a lovely couple..

Posted by: james | Mar 10 2016 7:15 utc | 51
the Skynews article about the "isis phonebook" has a paragraph claiming that the betrayer explained the journos that YPG and Asad are actively collaborating with IS...
better than to check if the names are known for good relation with KSA/Turkish/French police, i guess

Posted by: Mina | Mar 10 2016 9:15 utc | 52

Thanks, Penelope @ 31, a couple of takeaways from your link:

Without a doubt, the Revolution of 1917 and the ensuing Civil War were a terrible tragedy for our nation. However, all other revolutions were tragic as well. This does not prevent our French colleagues from extolling their upheaval, which, in addition to the slogans of liberty, equality and fraternity, also involved the use of the guillotine, and rivers of blood.
Western propaganda habitually accuses Russia of “revisionism,” and the alleged desire to destroy the established international system, as if it was us who bombed Yugoslavia in 1999 in violation of the UN Charter and the Helsinki Final Act, as if it was Russia that ignored international law by invading Iraq in 2003 and distorted UN Security Council resolutions by overthrowing Muammar Gaddafi’s regime by force in Libya in 2011. There are many examples.
This discourse about “revisionism” does not hold water. It is based on the simple and even primitive logic that only Washington can set the tune in world affairs. In line with this logic, the principle once formulated by George Orwell and moved to the international level, sounds like the following: all states are equal but some states are more equal than others. However, today international relations are too sophisticated a mechanism to be controlled from one centre. This is obvious given the results of US interference: There is virtually no state in Libya; Iraq is balancing on the brink of disintegration, and so on and so forth.

Posted by: okie farmer | Mar 10 2016 9:56 utc | 53

rufus magister @ 46 says:

I thought you, john, and the killer rabbit were a tag team

i thought you, rufus, had taken your shuck 'n jive show and left town. no such luck. like Ignatius, you preening shit stains just can't get enough of your own voices.

Posted by: john | Mar 10 2016 11:47 utc | 54


The term 'indian' refers to mysogynist women rapers, mother stabbers and baby burners of the Indus Valley tribes, pouring into USA by the 747-load every day to serve the sub-minimum-wage needs of the Ubers and the Zucks, courtesy of an ever-widening Fed H-1B visa program, one which is about to expand to include unlimited no-visa 'indians' from Imelda Land, according to HRC inside sources.

The Native Americans you casually dismiss didn't die and disappear 200 years ago, they die every day, right now, looted and starved and disinfranchised of their land rights and royalties under Federal treaties by the BIA and BLM, and by the Kochs and the Bundies.

Koch's favorite story, in fact, of how they rose from rags to riches was by building a fleet of tanker trucks to service First Nations' stripper wells for oil deliveries, then under-reporting those deliveries and putting the difference into cash in their own pockets, because, you know, 'We won, you lost, it's just business, get over it, now get off my land.'

Haww, haww, haww. Whoo, whoo, whoo.

Posted by: Chipnik | Mar 10 2016 12:26 utc | 55

in re 54 --

No, I can't get enough of correcting the ignorant. Plenty of scope for it here. Please consult your documentation.

in re 51 --

And you have quite a Triumvirate there.

Posted by: rufus magister | Mar 10 2016 12:55 utc | 56

"A top ISIS emir, Mahmoud Ahmad Al-Kaleezi, has been assassinated by unknown assailants in the Tabaqa Military airport on Mar.8. Al-Kaleezi is the third ISIS emir to be killed in the last 7 days."
Posted by: ALberto | Mar 10, 2016 12:14:57 AM | 40

First thoughts...
After the Russian airliner fell out of the Sinai sky, Russia vowed to track down the culprits. Secret Service clean-up ops typically track down suspects one by one, keeping tabs on each as they add to the list. The killing only begins when the list is complete.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Mar 10 2016 13:13 utc | 57

Off topic: Emil Pulsifer will now tell us his real name and where he lives. He will also tell us where he was educated, his sexual preferences and what he was doing in Kaliningrad.

Posted by: dh | Mar 10 2016 14:06 utc | 58

Good comments by 4H@22 and HW@29

Thank you for another insightful post, b. Iggy's ignoble ignorance (forgive the token alliteration) may be due less to lapses in taking his meds than the result of a jaded scribe whose years of loyal shilling and spinning for his neocon sponsors has become more detached from any obligation to verify actual events being played out. There is but a modicum of difference between reading Ignatius in WaPo and flipping the pages of Action Comics. Since the requiem for real journalism is long past, this site, like an oasis in the midst of a searing wasteland of disinformation, provides a place to connect with kindred folks for whom the distinction between reality and mirage is a matter of critical concern.

Posted by: metni | Mar 10 2016 14:08 utc | 59

24;The deep South,overwhelmingly black democrats, has all voted overwhelmingly for the white bitch from hell over BS who will give them hope instead of sh*t the hell bitch and her bent dick pos husband.
Are you denying that Blacks aren't,or can't be antisemites?The carpetbagger legacy lives on,as they eschew a Jewish candidate in seppeku.
Imagine if it was the white(reps) voters down south rejecting BS,it would be all over the MSM,as they are the usual targets from the illiberal Zionist divide and conquerors.

Posted by: dahoit | Mar 10 2016 14:59 utc | 60

22;Yes,and some guy shot the mor(m)on who told them to vote Cruz,and the authorities arrested him outside the WH.
Cruz isn't a Mormon,correct?I'm still trying to wrap my head around for xenophobic rep cons voting for Hispanic border jumpers.WTF?The world turned upside down.
Stupid moonie loonies.

Posted by: dahoit | Mar 10 2016 15:09 utc | 61

49;Absolutely no one can be compared to the Nazis,right?Their crime was paramount,they didn't like the Jews,the most wonderful people to ever walk the earth.
Ignatius is a propagandist for empire where millions of people are dead,millions displaced,and a defender of the worst wacko racist state in this world,Israel,so spare US your propaganda,and selective criminals.

Posted by: dahoit | Mar 10 2016 15:22 utc | 63

I would never vote for Ted Cruz,so Trump,hopefully, will not commit suicide.
He'll probably choose a woman,or a guy from the western rural states as a running mate if nominated.He calls Cruz the worst liar he's ever seen.I can't see him picking Mr.Ineligible anchor baby.

Posted by: dahoit | Mar 10 2016 15:25 utc | 64

I'm new here and would like to say this has been a great "find". My comment is more with regards to the "Kerry plan B" article. I have been watching the possibility of an attack or other distraction, via Lebanon. There has been a lot of activity by Israeli military over the past few days on the border, fighter planes violated Lebanese airspace, and there have been military drills in the area. This just in from South Front:

"According to a report from Beirut, the Israeli army has heavily deployed troops and equipment along the Lebanese border and stepped up military activities there.

Beirut based news agency the Daily Star reported that for the second day on Wednesday, Israeli troops fired tear gas canisters at Lebanese herders and farmers working near the border with the occupied Palestinian territories."

This article has even more explanations of the possibilities of an Israeli attack:

A highly positioned Russian source that is involved in the Syrian war room told Al-Rai: “Israel is preparing for a war against Hezbollah as if it’s going to happen tomorrow; this is standard military procedure for any state that feels threatened from an opponent state or an armed militia that it considers to be a threat to national security. Israel is conducting frequent military drills, both on its own and with other allies. These drills simulate various war scenarios to maintain the readiness of their forces. They are also conducting drills that aim to repel any Hezbollah threat; intelligence reports have also indicated that Hezbollah have acquired new tactical weapons and that Israel constantly arranges their drills according to the weaponry acquired by Hezbollah. As far as not giving Israel an excuse to wage war against Hezbollah, the leaders in Tel Aviv don’t decide matters of war because of a provocation or a tactical excuse, rather they rely on their ability to reach their projected goals before the start of the war and the losses that their military might incur and the internal and international ramifications that must be considered after the end of the war”.

This would really change the Syrian situation for the worst.

Posted by: Dean | Mar 10 2016 15:28 utc | 65

Barack Obama says Saudi Arabia needs to learn to share region with Iran

He dismissed the argument that his failure to enforce the red line in Syria, or his broader reticence about using military force, had emboldened Russia. Putin, he noted, invaded Georgia in 2008 during the presidency of George W Bush, even though the United States had more than 100,000 troops deployed in Iraq.

Posted by: Virgile | Mar 10 2016 17:26 utc | 66

Dean@66 - It's only a matter of 'when' not 'if'. From New Fears Over Russia’s Role In Syria: Is policy reassessment imminent?

On Sunday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomed the cease-fire despite skepticism in Israel that it will hold over the long term. Netanyahu reminded the powers involved that Israel reserved the right to intervene to prevent weapons transfers to Hezbollah and to block Shia-allied groups from establishing a new hostile front along the Golan Heights.

“Israel wants to preserve its freedom of action,” said Ofer Zalzberg, an Israel analyst at the International Crisis Group.

“Netanyahu is concerned that there is a period now in which every use of arms is seen as a breach, which endangers the entire cease-fire.” Netanyahu is saying that Israel’s “red lines” are separate from the cease-fire and defending them doesn’t violate it, Zalzberg said.

Note the codeword Nettanyahu uses for the Syrian Army and loyalist militias: Shia-allied groups. Israel's Plan B - if they couldn't see Assad ousted - is to take over more Syrian and Lebanese land under the guise of 'protection' from Hezbollah. They can't wait until next year for an Israeli-firster U.S. president - they have to act now. Obama won't blindly obey Nettanyahu - I'm surprised Nettanyahu hasn't tried to take Obama out yet. A disobedient U.S. is an existential threat to Israel.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Mar 10 2016 17:59 utc | 67

re: virgile at 67

The hypocrisy would be comedy gold if it weren't so tragic:

Reflexively backing them against Iran, the president said, "would mean that we have to start coming in and using our military power to settle scores. And that would be in the interest neither of the United States nor of the Middle East."
Obama's frustration with much of the Arab world is not new, but rarely has he been so blunt about it. He placed his comments in the context of his broader struggle to extract the United States from the bloody morass of the Middle East so that the nation can focus on more promising, faster-growing parts of the world, like Asia and Latin America.
"If we're not talking to them," he said, referring to young people in those places, "because the only thing we're doing is figuring out how to destroy or cordon off or control the malicious, nihilistic, violent parts of humanity, then we're missing the boat."

Posted by: fastfreddy | Mar 10 2016 18:02 utc | 68

@61 they vote for hillary because they LIKE THE CLINTONS. They might like Bernie as well, but they prefer Hillary. So do a lot of baby boomers. It has little to do with anti-semitism

Posted by: aaaa | Mar 10 2016 18:06 utc | 69

The ceasefire in Syria seems to be improving daily, much to the consternation of the bloody war lovers and Russian Holy Warriors. The next stage may be taking shape with the meeting of Turkish and Iranian leaders possibly leading to an agreement on the removal of Assad so the war on the Islamic State can be attempted in the future with a more united and effective force.

Posted by: Wayoutwest | Mar 10 2016 18:14 utc | 70


It is a known fact that the US, allied with Israel, is heavily supporting proxies in Iraq and in Syria on behalf of Israel. Yinon Plan (PNAC Plan, New American Century) is fully operational.

It should be noted that Obama has turned a blind eye (at least) to the suffering and carnage inflicted upon Yemen by Saudi Arabia.

Obama talks one thing and does another. His support for Israel is assuredly sufficient. Any Obama chatter indicating otherwise is propaganda and misdirection.

Full Steam Ahead.

Posted by: fastfreddy | Mar 10 2016 18:15 utc | 71

If anyone believes that the US and NATO could not take out IS in relatively short order, I've got a bridge in Manhattan for sale.

First course of action would be to stop funding and equipment provisioning.

Posted by: fastfreddy | Mar 10 2016 18:21 utc | 72

Wow. So many topics to data mine and ponder on this site. It's a smorgasbord of intelligent and moronic pleasures. This moron thanks you.

In terms blacks not voting for Jews -- perhaps a visit to Newport RI -- the cradle of American slave trade -- would bring some puzzle pieces together. Newport is also not coincidently the home of the oldest synagogue on US soil. Where the "wealthy slave trading elite families" are buried. Oops. These families also made huge fortunes in rum-running (keeping native Americans drunk for generations) and opium (aka the reason Chinese won't vote for Jews either). Anyhoo. The beauty of TRADING is that you never have to maintain the asset. Boom! Get it off the books. Go grab more "assets" from evil scumbags who do the mining from populations they wish to weaken and eliminate. Sound familiar? Yeah. Well. Evil hasn't changed much over the centuries.

The problem with slavery is that the slaves don't much like being slaves. AND. When one OWNS slaves. Their cost of carry is prohibitive. One must maintain them. Feed, clothe, house, provide health care, etc. And to do so means living WITH them. Side by side. For generations. See Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, etc. And humans tend to build affinities and dependencies when living together in spite of circumstances.

It's also interesting US history "slavery" academics tend to be Jews. Gatekeepers. They have a bully pulpit (like Iggy) to make "facts" fit the narrative. White southerners bad. Jews good. Neatly constructed stories and myths. But American blacks have not been re-educated nearly well enough by "experts". Not enough to vote for Bernie. Perhaps low school attendance rates have SOME benefit after all? Cuz black families tend to hand down stories and family-lore from generation to generation. Untainted by public school propaganda and re-writes of US history. Such as which people did what to whom. It is what it is.

Posted by: 4H | Mar 10 2016 19:10 utc | 73

Another report of Turkish Special Forces (which I suggested are probably Syrian Turkmen Army) dressing as ISIS for the Tell Abyad (Giri Spi) attack at the end of Feb.

There were scattered reports of this tactic used in other parts of Syria to attack either Kurdish or Syrian positions. Interesting way to weasel around the cease-fire. Originally saw this regarding supposed ISIS attacks from Jordan and the Golan. I'm wondering if the U.S. scheme of bringing in UAE 'Special Forces' really means Arabic mercs dressed as ISIS to attack Syrian positions.

I guess if your hired head-choppers in ISIS can't defeat Assad, you have to hire mercs to play dress-up. Illegal wars are so complicated!

Posted by: PavewayIV | Mar 10 2016 22:02 utc | 74

PavewayIV @74

It fulfills the adage that the rich can hire half of the pond scum to kill the other half.

Others would call it genocide and people would be prosecuted for war crimes.

History is written by the winners.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 11 2016 1:35 utc | 75

Re Julian @ 50 and the Republican presidential nomination:

I pretty much agree with your prognostication. I do think it possible that Rubio could stay in the race even after losing Florida, simply to siphon delegates away from Trump and Cruz. Not only would that slow Trump's momentum toward the needed delegate total, it would also amass a reserve of delegates whose votes, in the event of a brokered convention, would be available for other purposes.

I'd be very surprised if, in the event that Trump is clearly ahead but lacks the crucial total, Trump doesn't make a deal with Cruz as VP in exchange for the support of his delegates. Cruz knows that he would not be the choice of a brokered free for all, and Trump is a pragmatist whose rhetoric about his opponents can change depending on which way the wind is blowing. Being a heartbeat away from the presidency would be far more attractive to Cruz than returning to a position as an ostracized and impotent also-ran in the Senate. There is far more overlap between the voter base of Trump and Cruz than some of the pundits assert, and frankly, each group would be glad to put up with the other if it means the success of their own candidate.

Posted by: Emil Pulsifer | Mar 11 2016 3:40 utc | 76

Re dh @58:

Very well:

(a) Dr. Hugo Z. Hackenbush

(b) Sauk City, Wisconsin

(c) Merton College, Oxford

(d) Afghan hounds with an overbite

(e) Admiring the fine concrete architecture, the shirtless clots of sullen, intravenous drug addicts and toothless prostitutes, and wondering what the hell happened to Koenigsburg.

Posted by: Emil Pulsifer | Mar 11 2016 3:54 utc | 77

@77 ep - go make an ass of yourself somewhere else.. take rufus and wow with you..

Posted by: james | Mar 11 2016 4:00 utc | 78

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