Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
April 10, 2017

Open Thread 2017-14

News & views ...

Posted by b on April 10, 2017 at 8:32 UTC | Permalink

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Wikileaks antartica photos

Emails in the pedesta archive. This one has pictures attached. Looks like a photographer got more than he expected.
Maybe someone was trolling Pedesta. We know he had recieved emails encouraging "Disclosure" of the aliens. And looking at the emails with attached antartica photos from some dubious character (Johnson lo) (lol) and no to: shown, with some heading about climate change in chinese and pics attached. Well obviously its pic 13.
Take a look and tell me thats not a Photoshoped ufo.
Date: 2008-11-29 04:47
Subject: ??????? ....(Chinese) Icebergs in the quick dissolve

Subject: ?B?s?b???t???? .....garbled Japanese text

Posted by: Alogon | Apr 10 2017 8:53 utc | 1

Chas W. Freeman’s latest: - highly recommended

Reimagining the Middle East

The money line:

“The central objective of U.S. policy in the Middle East has long been to achieve regional acceptance for the Jewish settler state in Palestine.


But American diplomacy no longer even pretends to seek to halt Israel’s triumphant march toward existential implosion despite the obvious negative consequences of this for the security and international influence of the United States.

Posted by: pantaraxia | Apr 10 2017 10:11 utc | 3

Never betray your friends to court the favor of your enemies. If you betray your friends, the most principled and perceptive among them will drop you, leaving only the delusional and venal. That is not a good trade, given that the approval you gain is bound to be fleeting and contingent, whereas the contempt and distrust you create will be permanent.

Going to be so fun to watch those cucked by Trump are going to do next.

Posted by: ThatDamnGood | Apr 10 2017 11:29 utc | 4

Alogan i'm sorry but your post contains nothing... literally fucking nothing .... why are you bringing podesta in to anything? Are you a big pizzagate guy?

Posted by: Au | Apr 10 2017 13:11 utc | 5

#1 pic 13 does not contain a photoshopped ufo! Wtf ruining this board.

Posted by: Au | Apr 10 2017 13:13 utc | 6


I make it an iron-clad rule to never-ever make predictions, usually. But I have a hypothesis that simply begs to be released. Here it is:

The April 7 U.S. missile strike on the Syrian government's Shayrat airbase had nothing (directly) to do with the Syrian conflict. It will not be repeated. Instead, the U.S. will install large army bases and a large number of its troops within Syria. This will be done to create a somewhat fake war against Assad.

And this (as deemed by fools) is absolutely necessary in order to to cope with the imminent total economic crisis that was baked in the cake before Trump took office. Notice also that Trump is demanding an end to the so-called "war on coal" when he knows full well that this will contribute greatly to an ecological disaster.

So: Everything Trump will do from this point forward will focus on dealing with the economic collapse which he has just realized is about to occur.

(Just my own theory.)

Posted by: blues | Apr 10 2017 14:12 utc | 7

blues: not all that wild a theory. Everything, especially the stock market, is in bubble territory, and politicians are frantically seeking in advance a scapegoat to point at for when the bubble pops. I have been thinking that a war with Russia would serve that purpose, but maybe a war in Syria would do the job as well.

Posted by: Bill H | Apr 10 2017 14:17 utc | 8

Watch the French Election.

Macron must be defeated. I wonder if Hamon understands this???

Interesting article.

Le Pen (24%)
Macron (24%)
Melenchon (18%)
Fillon (17%)
Hamon (9%)
Other (8%).

Hamon should drop out and endorse Melenchon and then we would likely have a Le Pen (Nationalist) v Melenchon (Communist) run-off.

Something the EU/NATO all these creeps would hate.
Their man is Macron and he must be stopped by whatever means possible.

Posted by: Jules | Apr 10 2017 14:21 utc | 9

Now they're going for Tuksi Gabbard

"[Howard] Dean, who served as Vermont Governor from 1991 to 2003 and led the DNC from 2005 to 2009, branded Gabbard’s stance on Syria “a disgrace.”

“Gabbard should not be in Congress,” he wrote on Twitter on Sunday. Asked by one of the users why the former Governor did not display a similar indignation over “Hillary Clinton’s mistakes,” Dean responded: “Engaging in dialogue isn’t the problem. It’s claiming there is doubt Assad uses chemical warfare.”


Major Gabbard:

Despite being repeatedly pressed by CNN’s Wolf Blitzer to
unconditionally accept the so far unrevealed intelligence, Gabbard
retorted: “Last time I checked, Wolf, the Congress has the authority
and responsibility for declaring war, for authorizing use of military

“Whether the President or the Pentagon or the
Secretary of State say they have the evidence the fact remains that they
have not brought that evidence before Congress, they have not brought
that evidence before the American people and have not sought
authorization from Congress to launch this military attack on another
country,” Gabbard said.

Posted by: el sid | Apr 10 2017 14:40 utc | 10

The red line allegedly declared by Russia and Iran seems fake according to "russia-insider":

"Reuters, Others, Report Fake Iran/Russia Statement on Syria — 'Russia Insider' Blindly Follows"

Posted by: roamer | Apr 10 2017 14:46 utc | 11

Trump has lost control of his administration -- he is being blackmailed by the deep state (they have finally got him.

The false flag was arranged by some rogue elements of the United States, Nusra, and Turkey (possibly Israel) because the Syrian Arab Army was kicking so much ass that the United States was in danger of loosing the East altogether -- which would mean that it no longer would have anything to negotiate with, -- it wants to partition Syria, and to keep that part for themselves -- Israel is very interested in breaking up Syria, so that it becomes the Top Dog and easily able to dominate the region after the landscape there is full of broken, non-functioning stateltes (small states that had been divide through internal strife engineered from the outside).

This is the reason the Syrian Hit was ordered. And Trump had no choice. He is useless now. Although he will still want to convince his base that it will deliver on other things.

But how will he find the money? All our treasury has gone into these wars, all for Israel -- the only veheicle which enables largest transfer of riches from the many to the few.

Posted by: susetta | Apr 10 2017 14:46 utc | 12

Interesting analysis in the link below. I have my own thoughts about it but I'm more interested in hearing others' critiques, esp. b's.

Posted by: s | Apr 10 2017 14:47 utc | 13

@ el sid | Apr 10, 2017 10:40:00 AM | 10

[Howard] Dean, who served as Vermont Governor from 1991 to 2003 and led the DNC from 2005 to 2009, branded Gabbard’s stance on Syria "a disgrace.”

Gabbard should be proud of this attack by the scumbag Howard Dean. Like most of the rest of the Democrat Party shitstains, including Pocahontas, he's for Yinon first and USA last.

Posted by: PhilK | Apr 10 2017 14:57 utc | 14

Jules, it won't happen. Everyone expected Hamon to join Melenchon, who was always ahead, except for Hamon suddenly promessing 700 euros to everyone in France! Hamon's wife is working for LVMH. Unless they both want to end up tramps in New York, he knows that's the red line. Even after Valls, who signed a paper saying he would support the winner of the primary, joined Macron, as did other big shots in the "Socialist" party, Hamon did not move from his anti Putin pro MB gestures. Melenchon has been very strong in answering journalists about Syria in the latest days.

Posted by: Mina | Apr 10 2017 15:01 utc | 15

@13 He lost me at NORKs, Chicoms, & Russkies.

Posted by: dh | Apr 10 2017 15:07 utc | 16

Kudos to Tulsi Gabbard. If she's being dissed by capitulating grifter prostitute Howard Dean (who did some good thing at one time but then went blissfully over to the dark side to collect his grift and payola), then she's clearly on the right track.

I've been off-line for a bit so only know the bare bones outline of what's been happening in the swamp of WashDC and elsewhere. Speaking off the cuff and only from my own personal feelings, it seems to me that Trump's been captured by Deep State/the MIC. With N. Korea going wild with nukes, I think even Trump - as thick and narcissistic as he is - maybe finally realized just how in over his head he is.

Disclaimer: not sad that Clinton didn't win.

That said, no love lost on my part vis Trump. While I was willing to give him "a chance," all he's done is continue to prove what a low-life, know-nothing, worthless braggart con-man he is. I don't know if he was surprised to win, but he has no business being in the White House. Now he'll be captured and led around by the nose by the usual conservative forces in Deep State, and we will experience NeoCon/NeoLib governance yet again with as much pain inflicted on the hapless 99% as possible. We're screwed here in the USA. And that's the end of it.

What happens on the World Stage remains to be seen. My first thought when I heard about the tomahawks flying at Syria was False Flag. What else is new? Same old, diff'rent day right here in the Yew Ess Aaaay.

Good luck to us all.

Posted by: RUKidding | Apr 10 2017 15:22 utc | 17

@13 much too easy and simplistic Russian ships provocative give me a break and no concern on the stupidity of this "message" of "brush back" and inaccurate four children were killed. Trump exchanges dead chem children for dead missile strike children. Brilliant.

Posted by: Pislyak | Apr 10 2017 15:41 utc | 18

@2 nmb.. thanks.

@7 blues.. i agree with bill @8.. nothing out of place in your perspective as i see it either..

@16 dh.. written like someone who continues to believe, right or wrong, that the usa still remains top dog..

Tulsi Gabbard - one of the few voices of reason in the usa political system today... i suspect if she gets more traction, she'll get attacked more... goes with the terrain.. all the warmongering sycophants start rearing their ugly heads..

Posted by: james | Apr 10 2017 15:46 utc | 19

@ 13 & 16

Persisted until the following, only part way thru point 1 of 3, then abandoned all hope, counter-factual Cold War 2.0 propaganda for the Empire, tripe:

That said, the strike was a multifaceted message, and unfortunately one that absolutely had to be sent, somewhere, somehow.

Recall as many of you have posted, in the past two years, the Russkies have been getting extremely provocative, doing flybys of American ships, sailing into our waters, and so on. Forget who is "responsible" for Ukraine, the fact is Ukraine unloaded its nukes cuz we promised them we would protect them via NATO. Now that promise is vanishing. Our word certainly is not good from the Ukrainian perspective...

Re Tulsi Gabbard, more power to her, courageous articulate intelligent principled ... sadly fear they will take her down one way or the other, sooner or later, as she fails to comply nor conform to the requirements of Neocon/lib Chickenhawk Warmongers R Us Inc.

Posted by: Outraged | Apr 10 2017 15:48 utc | 20

Every US president is a mass murderer this is just American tradition. The more people Trump kills the better for his popularity. Americans love death, blood, misery, guns, wars, Rambos, crimes etc. This is very exciting for them. It seems that they are addicted to blood and death. If you are in the US and you turn on TV set there is always a lot of blood and corpses (movies, news ect.) This is strange but true. No remorse. No empathy. Just happy killing day by day. Maybe this country needs psychotherapy?

Posted by: blue peace | Apr 10 2017 15:51 utc | 21

the free republican article lost me. I think Russia/Putin has shown great restraint from the taunts that the US has been throwing at them. my view of the ongoing Ukraine episode - when the elected admin turned to Russia after nixing a deal from the EU in favor of a better one from Russia - Victoria Nulan (fuck the EU) set in motion the coup (with the Neo Nazi snipers (that the leaked phone call from Estonian foreign minister said they were hired by the coup coalition). Then the civil war, Crimea going back to Russia, then the Malaysian airliner downing - the downing by Turkey of the Russian bomber - the Deir Ezor bombing by the coalition and coordinated ISIS attack - happening when russia and the US were working on coordination - then less clear -the downing of Russian civilian aircraft in Egypt - the assassination of Russian Turkish ambassador - and more... Now the false flag chemical attack and the bombing of Syrian air base days after Tillerson said Assad can stay. It is obvious Russia does not want WW3 with the US - the US knows this and is pushing - hoping to get Russia to do something stupid.
I can remember when Chas Freeman was nixed for an important foreign policy position because he was not a fawning Israeli stooge. Howard Dean who was promising as a Presidential candidate - until the DNC kill switch was pulled (amazing how hard they had to work to stop Bernie) - has turned into a creature of the blob. The system is broken. Competent people interested in the general welfare of US citizens no longer get hired by the government. progressive reformers now longer have any influence to keep the system working for anybody but the top .1% Well actually it still works for the credentialed upper middle class for now.

Posted by: gepay | Apr 10 2017 15:53 utc | 22

@Jules, Mina
Hamon has a very decent progressive platform - which is probably why the media try their best to ignore him. I had somehow hoped for a Corbyn/Sanders-style grassroots social media momentum. Melenchon is an honest guy imo, but somewhat backward politically, stuck in the 70s.
Macron and Fillon wouldn't make much of a difference: Lower wages, less job security, less taxes for the rich, less public services, growing inequality - like your average 'elite' candidate.

Polls might be pretty far off though, sound hard to believe, don't you think?

@RUKidding 17
Trump's economic platform is (and has always been) about as Neolib as it gets - except for the free trade bit, but only bc US corporations aren't competitive any more. Foreign policy wise, he never seemed to have any discernible priorities or principles imv. In other words, his supposed 'anti-establishment' stance never existed.

Posted by: smuks | Apr 10 2017 15:57 utc | 23

In terms of manufacturing consent, did outrage at Russia over the election loosened the nuts and bolts in many minds wrt some sort of purported payback to Russia/Putin by supporting military intervention in Syria (since obviously few Americans cares -- or has ever cared -- about Syrians or Iraqis or Afghans or Yemeni or Libyans ... or, etc.)?

oh, over at Juan Cole, I think I saw a rising meme asking where proof from Syria/Russia that it was a routine strike on a warehouse (that accidentally exploded chemical weapons/raw materials)...

Posted by: Susan Sunflower | Apr 10 2017 16:02 utc | 24

Russian Foreign Ministry has released a very detailed and documented statement regarding chemical weapon usage and fake news/ngos within Syria that provides must know context that's never provided by any MSM. It was picked-up and republished by Southfront, where it may be in a better format for some users,

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 10 2017 16:06 utc | 25

@smuks 23
Agree. I didn't vote for either Trump or Clinton because why bother. One or the other, I figured it would be bad no matter what. There were many, though, who pinned some amount of hope on Trump to be different. I didn't see it, myself. I always figured he just ran as a lark and as a way to improve his family's brand and make some money.

Trump talked a "game" - I wouldn't even call it a good game - of supposedly helping US citizens who truly are desparate and really doing badly. Ignored by both so-called Republicans and Democrats, they've lost their livelihoods and aren't well enough educated (not that education prepares you for much anymore) to get jobs in another location. Supposedly Trump would bring jobs back for them, but I could never see it happening. Would be nice, but wasn't really credible.

Plus why would someone like Trump give a sh*t about "those people"?? He's only ever screwed over his workers and contractors countless times. He hires H1 visa workers from Eastern Europe to pay them less than US workers. He's hired many many undocumented workers to build his casinos and hotels. THIS is someone you "trust" to give you a helping hand?

But some people online, whom I generally trust, kept saying: give Trump a chance. People are desparate. You'll see: he'll do some good.

Well color me utterly unsurprised at what a complete clusterf*ck his first 100 days in office have been. Trump isn't exactly dumb, but he's clearly not very smart, nor is he clever enough to figure out what to do now that he's the dog that caught the car. His cabinet picks highlight how all Trump wants to do is rip off the USA as much as feasible before declaring bankruptcy - massiver bankruptcy - once again.

Would it have been "better" with Clinton? It's arguable, but possibly somewhat less disasterous than this is proving to be, imo. That said, I'm glad to see the Clinton dynasty kicked to the curb, and not sad about the Bush juggernaught also being kicked to the curb. Those 2 things may end up being the only 2 worthwhile things that Trump accomplishes.

Posted by: RUKidding | Apr 10 2017 16:08 utc | 26

Poverty in America

Wars are not just meant to keep the poor busy, it also helps having the rich stay quiet.

Posted by: Mina | Apr 10 2017 16:08 utc | 27

Xi's visit to Trump was a bit of an anti-climax judging by the platitudes from each leader in the aftermath. The only substantial outcome was an unsolicited suggestion from Xi that Trump visit Pyongyang with ROK and starts talking with them to resolve the issues.
My guess?
EVERY time AmeriKKKa blusters about the existential threat of North Korea, Xi will be on the phone to Trump...
"Hey Trumpster, ol' pal, have you actually TALKED with NK yet?"

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Apr 10 2017 16:23 utc | 28

Israel can always count on IS zombies for a little provocation. What next?

Posted by: Mina | Apr 10 2017 16:27 utc | 29


The more I see and hear of Gabbard the more I like her. No surprises she is smeared and hated, she brings much needed sense to the circus.

I've seen people calling her a fascist too. Political "debate" is pointless nowadays it's just a bunch of charlatans slinging hatred at anyone who shows them for what they are.

Posted by: Bob | Apr 10 2017 16:31 utc | 30


Due to recent unfortunat adverse publicity we have been obliged to rename our Brand to better protect our partners.

Please pay attention:

Al-Qaeda -> al-Nusra -> Ahrar al-Sham -> al-Wotta Sham

Posted by: el sid | Apr 10 2017 16:32 utc | 31

Things are going to be heating up in the Deir Ezzor area very soon. This is the lynchpin to any plan to partition eastern Syria away. If I were the Syrian Army General, I'd be asking the Russians to drop in a brigade of paratroopers soon...The Americans are on the way.

Posted by: str8arrow62 | Apr 10 2017 16:55 utc | 32

So, b, you still don't believe this IS the new operational plan, not a viagra-induced, neocon wet dream...?

Here's a challenge: I put $10 on the first "incident" involving Russians and Americans in Syria taking place before Easter, more specifically from Thursday to Sunday [(((They))) enjoy celebrating Christian holidays]. Any takers?

Posted by: LXV | Apr 10 2017 16:57 utc | 33

Two interesting things in the last 24-48 hours

#1. apparent ISIS attack on US 'moderate rebel' training base on the Jordanian border its Syria, required air strikes to defend base. In the same timeframe you have rebel forces pushing into Dara'a pressuring SAA defending city.

Is the ISIS attack in Jordan going to be used as a pretext to introduce US troops into southern Syria, allowing them to consolidate an area with the 'moderate rebels'?

Is the ISIS attack simply another attempt to draw US intervention into Syria and it is being orchestrated by other countries to manipulate the US?

#2. China moves 150,000 troops to the border with North Korea as the US strike group heads towards NK coast.

Is this a sign from China that any US attack on NK will result in Korean War 2.0? Surely China must realize that if NK government is overthrown by US that the THAAD missile defence will be shifted northward like a dagger into the heart of Chinese rocket forces.

Is the intent of this deployment to block any refugee flows after/if the NK government is toppled?

Posted by: WG | Apr 10 2017 17:09 utc | 34

@ 33 LXV
This is what happened - protecting an FSA Osoud al-Sharqiyah in outskirts of Rukban Camp from ISIS : 3 dead amongst the "coalition troops"

IS launched offensive on Tanf border crossing, FSA got surrounded so US/Jordanian troops moved in

Posted by: Yul | Apr 10 2017 17:12 utc | 35

The attack on Tulsi Gabbard (notably led by Borg-State Democrats like Howard Dean and neoliberal media conglomerates) is interesting - looks like questioning the basis of the "Assad launched a chemical attack" stories is a major sin. The only non-Internet media coverage that questions those claims is outside the American-British system, see dw:

The Syrian regime may not have had a compelling motive, believes Günther Meyer, the director of the Research Center for the Arab World at the Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz. “Only armed opposition groups could profit from an attack with chemical weapons,” he told DW. “With their backs against the wall, they have next to no chance of opposing the regime militarily. As President [Donald] Trump’s recent statements show, such actions make it possible for anti-Assad groups to receive further support.”

A real investigation would look for direct evidence, circumstantial evidence (motivation), and reliable witnesses. For direct evidence, if chemical tests of the composition of the poison gas matched various reference standards (Syrian sarin stockpiles? ISIS or Al Qaeda-manufactured sarin? Turkish sarin stockpiles? Libyan sarin stockpiles?) , then you can say it probably came from such-and-such a stockpile. So where are the victim's clothes, soil samples, etc.? Why haven't they been sent to testing labs around the world?

Then, as with any crime, one always wonders about motivation. Assad’s government has no plausible motivation since it is winning back territory from armed opposition groups using conventional means. Opposition groups do have the motivation, since a U.S. attack on Syrian government forces helps their agenda.

Thirdly, we have to ask, who is credible? If someone repeatedly lies about WMDs to justify military intervention, as the U.S. government has since Iraq WMD 2003, Syria Ghouta 2013, etc., are they a credible source? Is Donald Trump believable when he says there is “no doubt” the Syrian government launched a chemical weapons attack? Do major American and British media outlets have any credibility on such claims?

So in a real investigation, those are the questions: Is there direct evidence tying the suspect to the crime? Is there circumstantial evidence, i.e. is there a clear motive? Do we have reliable witnesses? If the suspect is the Syrian government, the answers are no, no and no. But if the suspect is armed opposition groups, then the answers are no, yes, and no.

This kind of analysis, the Borg-State doesn't like it at all. Not allowed on MSNBC, FOX, NYTimes, Guardian, WaPo, CNN, CBS, etc.

Posted by: nonsense factory | Apr 10 2017 17:12 utc | 36

Kucinich/Gabbard 2020

Posted by: Circe | Apr 10 2017 17:15 utc | 37


According to the Guardian "activists" have sent samples to Western intelligence agencies. No guessing what their findings will be.

I found this interesting because how does one send sarin to the CIA through the mail? They must have direct communications to facilitate such a transfer, which begs the question, how did these arrangements come into being?

Posted by: Bob | Apr 10 2017 17:21 utc | 38

Quote from Chaz Newman, linked above:

Fracking and horizontal drilling techniques have made the United States once again an energy exporter. Oil and gas shipments from the Persian Gulf now both complement and compete with oil and gas from America. Yet, preventing the disruption of access to Persian Gulf energy is a service that the United States continues to provide free of charge to the global economy. America does not ask the principal consumers of these exports – China, the EU, India, Japan, and Korea – to assume or even share the burden of assuring their own energy security. Arguably, this deprives these countries of reasons to build navies that might rival that of the United States and thus helps to preserve America’s global military primacy. But it’s hard to see what other U.S. interest it now serves.

This is educated stupidity. Freeman knows this and that, then builds a weird argument. For starters, there are extremely few countries, and I cannot find an oil exporter among them, that would refrain from collecting revenue from their mineral exports. Perhaps they may choose to do it in a way that U.S.A. elite does not like, but that dislike has nothing to do with "energy security". Moreover, occasional pirates attacking and hijacking oil cargo are collectively defended by fleets of various countries, and U.S.A. is not hugely involved. Thus "China, the EU, India, Japan and Korea" do no need any "American protection services" for securing oil trade.

Thus it is quite irrelevant if U.S.A. imports oil or not, Navy in its current size has very little to do with protecting "free trade". It is necessary if we want to enforce a maritime blockade, our Gulf allies seem to be doing imperfect job with Yemen right now: why did not those miscreants (in Yemen) die of hunger yet? But one should give it to the Gulfies: they have spent a good coin to purchase enough naval ships, I cannot find the link now, but I read that Saudis insisted to buy four times more expensive ships than the offer of another (also American) company. In any case, Gulfies are by Freeman (and Trump) logic perfect allies, wasting enormous money to purchase Western military supplies.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Apr 10 2017 17:53 utc | 39

@elsid "Real" Democrats hate Tulsi Gabbard. She didn't carry her share of the water for Clinton the Second, among other things. They will be out to primary her. I'm sending her a small monthly contribution.

Posted by: chuckvw | Apr 10 2017 18:06 utc | 41

It's good that the Russian Foreign ministry tries to set the record strait but I was a little disappointed like their reference to the Nobel Peace Prize for example. It's as co-opted as any MSM news agency so why giving it legitimacy by making a reference to it. Amongst the Peace prize winners are Barack Obama as US president who didn't knew how the oval office looked from the inside yet, the European Union for doing what, destroying Libya? Even Al Qaeda's crisis support team white helmets nearly won the Nobel Peace Prize.

Posted by: xor | Apr 10 2017 18:08 utc | 42

@WG 34

Sounds like a second front indeed, to make sure the partition works out the desired way, i.e. producing a north-south rather than a west-east axis. Whoever reaches Deir Ezzor first...but let's wait some days to confirm this.
nb, is this the same 'moderate' New Syrian Army that seemed to act as ISIS supply management in the past?

North Korea - China doesn't want any unilateral US action, so it demonstrates that it's ready to move in immediately to take control. Losing their east Asian bogeyman/ "threat" would be a strategic disaster for the US (and major win for China), so they won't do it.

Posted by: smuks | Apr 10 2017 18:09 utc | 43

@RUKidding 26

"Trump talked a "game" - I wouldn't even call it a good game - of supposedly helping US citizens who truly are desperate and really doing badly."

Standard operating procedure of right-wing politicians. Once people realize they're being f*cked over worse than ever, the govt. will resort to nationalism & either aggressive foreign (war) or domestic (racism, divide and rule) policy to distract them. Or both.

While Clinton herself is hardly better, I saw a certain chance that progressive democrats like Sanders would gain influence under her, esp. after the midterms. Not very probable I agree, but the best hope there was imo.

Posted by: smuks | Apr 10 2017 18:16 utc | 44

See Jared at the war!

Task and Purpose:

"Jared Goes To Iraq! A Picture Story"

Posted by: Dean | Apr 10 2017 18:23 utc | 45

@35 Yul

I hope you haven't fallen for the latest & greatest "problem creation" part of the problem-reaction-solution triptich...

This entire Syrian mess has been staged since the very beginnings and to this very day, so why should you suddenly believe in a report (coming from Mordor's mouthpiece, nevertheless) about coalition partners infighting? Oh, were both sides suddenly out of film so we can't see any video reports of the attack circulating the web?

So, what do you expect the US reaction to be concerning the problem with ISIS attacks on An Tanf Garrison?

Posted by: LXV | Apr 10 2017 18:28 utc | 46

smuks @ 44

An excellent, detailed, (long) article on the 2013 Ghouta gas incident is at SST. It gives all the background on sampling methods, etc for chemical attacks, and the politics behind what information gets released to the public. Well worth the read. It is something the MSM talking heads should read but won't.

Posted by: Dean | Apr 10 2017 18:32 utc | 47

"low-life, know-nothing, worthless braggart con-man" Posted by: RUKidding | Apr 10, 2017 11:22:53 AM | 17

The person referred here is rich, completed good school and occasionally can behave properly, so I would edit it to "know-nothing braggart con-man". Additionally, Trump is not that much of a con-man, he is basically a master of marketing. Did he praise neo-cons before elections? Yes, he did, e.g. John Bolton. If you can praise John Bolton then you can send missile flying in about as much time as it takes to prepare them (if rather few reached the target, that may be cause by the Navy personnel being flabbergasted by the sudden order, but they should not be).

Some were mislead by word salad in which sensible sentences appeared now and then, but when you buy a salad, you should pay attention to all its ingredients.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Apr 10 2017 18:37 utc | 48

nonsense factory 36
Seeing that from DW was a surprise since they normally talk to CFR types in the US on their PBS World Channel show. I wrote them to thank them for this. As someone pointed out in another thread, DW is like BBC but they are also in Germany and want peace between the players. Still, DW was the closest thing to an MSM player that did not derisively dismiss the Russian/Syrian account of the Khan Shaykhun chemical incident.

Posted by: Curtis | Apr 10 2017 18:37 utc | 49

xor @42--

I don't know what the intent was for the inclusion of what I'd call a throw away phrase that referenced OPCW's Nobel, as it certainly isn't necessary for context. I'm very pleased to see them suggest the investigation by the Swedes as reported in The Indicter, which I referenced here several days ago. Maria Zakharova has already used their investigation extensively; her presentations are all must sees, IMO, and can be found here, I also highly suggest this presentation by Lavrov despite its being 2 years old since it details the historical background of Russia's foreign policy,

IMO, the MFO release ought to be read in tandem with this excellent Sputnik article based on a long interview with Syria's Ambassador to Ukraine Hassan Haddur, I wonder how much longer truth telling Mr Haddur will be allowed to remain in Ukraine?

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 10 2017 18:40 utc | 50

The slave trade in Libya. Thanks, Secretary Clinton!

Posted by: chuckvw | Apr 10 2017 19:01 utc | 51

Sputnik debunks "chemical" attack - - with an interview by Professor Marcello Ferrada de Noli of Swedish Doctors for Human Rights - all a show.
One really wonders who can believe this stuff anymore... outside of the haley woman and UK's FM.

Posted by: GoraDiva | Apr 10 2017 19:20 utc | 52

Ziad provides a brief recap of the propaganda war waged against Syria aimed at enabling the invasion and its escalation,

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 10 2017 19:52 utc | 53

Excellent article!

Posted by: FecklessLeft | Apr 10 2017 19:52 utc | 54

It becomes even more comical as Centcom says it didn't mean to damage runways! You can't make this stuff up!

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 10 2017 20:15 utc | 55

The latest, it seems:


"The United States has concluded Russia knew in advance of Syria's chemical weapons attack last week, a senior U.S. official said Monday.

The official said a drone operated by Russians was flying over a hospital as victims of the attack were rushing to get treatment. Hours after the drone left, a Russian-made fighter jet bombed the hospital in what American officials believe was an attempt to cover up the usage of chemical weapons.

The official said the presence of the surveillance drone over the hospital couldn't have been a coincidence, and that Russia must have known the chemical weapons attack was coming and that victims were seeking treatment."

Posted by: Madeira | Apr 10 2017 20:41 utc | 56

The next False Flag against Syria is already being filmed, al Jazeera crews on the ground, it will be White Phosphorous blamed on Assad this time.

Now we can lay to rest all that speculation about what the first Trump attack was about, he was just laying the ground work for the Big One, mostly likely a massive attack, busting up what’s left of Syria.

Posted by: Greg Bacon | Apr 10 2017 21:03 utc | 57

@smuks | Apr 10, 2017 11:57:44 AM | 23

Hamon is an avatar of Hollande and a strong ally of Macron. He will become the French PM if Macron wins.

Like Macron he is a globalist and a strong supporter of NATO and sanctions against Russia.

If you want a progressive French President consider one of the six "minor" candidates such as Asselineau or the more environmentalist Melenchon!

Posted by: Krollchem | Apr 10 2017 21:12 utc | 58

Apparently there will be no Tillerson-Putin meeting .... and depending on who/what you read, this has been "known" since yesterday (Stratfor and others) although initially reported as "Angered at strike, Putin will not meet with Tillerson" ... there's since been some backtracking and claims that either Tillerson canceled or that there never was a scheduled meeting

Very very Alice in Wonderland ...

“When I use a word,” Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, “it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less.” “The question is,” said Alice, “whether you can make words mean so many different things.” “The question is,” said Humpty Dumpty, “which is to be master—that's all.”

Posted by: Susan Sunflower | Apr 10 2017 21:12 utc | 59

more then anything it is a propaganda war.. i guess it always has been.. countries are throwing a lot of good money after bad it seems, and it ain't just by supporting the financial and military sector.. i guess the msm, hollywood and all their servants have to get into the act too..

Posted by: james | Apr 10 2017 21:19 utc | 60

"The official said a drone operated by Russians was flying over a hospital as victims of the attack were rushing to get treatment. Hours after the drone left, a Russian-made fighter jet bombed the hospital in what American officials believe was an attempt to cover up the usage of chemical weapons."

It also could be that large quantities of chlorine gas were stored there for hospital disinfection.

Initial reports were of chlorine gas exposure.

Posted by: Les | Apr 10 2017 21:35 utc | 61

- In early april the US, Japan & South Korea held a 3 day military exercise.

- "Mattis: North Korea has to be stopped"

Posted by: Willy2 | Apr 10 2017 21:39 utc | 62

has this been posted?
The new double-down is a contention by AP that Russia “knew about the chemical strike days in advance” — because — there was a Russian drone over the medical facility (clinic/hospital) when the victims were arriving — before — that clinic was then (of course) deliberately bombed to conceal the evidence or something.

apparently — at this point — at least wrt the AP — there is no “bottom” to the evil that is Russia

WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States has concluded Russia knew in advance of Syria’s chemical weapons attack last week, a senior U.S. official said Monday.

The official said a drone operated by Russians was flying over a hospital as victims of the attack were rushing to get treatment. Hours after the drone left, a Russian-made fighter jet bombed the hospital in what American officials believe was an attempt to cover up the usage of chemical weapons.

The senior official said the U.S. has no proof of Russian involvement in the actual chemical attack in northern Syria.

Posted by: Susan Sunflower | Apr 10 2017 21:41 utc | 63

@ susan sunflower.. if you read more and posted less you would know the answer to your question ! see @ 57

Posted by: james | Apr 10 2017 21:45 utc | 64

"The official said a drone operated by Russians was flying over a hospital as victims of the attack were rushing to get treatment."

Meaning, perhaps, that a sharp-eyed drone operator saw lots of frantic activity going on, and decided to circle over it to see what's happening, dude.

After all, isn't that the *purpose* of a recon drone?

Honestly, the USA military thinks everyone is as foolish as they are.

Posted by: Yeah, Right | Apr 10 2017 21:56 utc | 65

Willy2 @62--

I differ with Mattis rather forcefully: It's the Outlaw US Empire that must be stopped--an opinion shared by the vast majority of the planet's people!

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 10 2017 21:58 utc | 66

- The US seem to have prepared an attack on North Korea in 2003

Posted by: Willy2 | Apr 10 2017 21:58 utc | 67

#9 Jules

Le Pen vs French Commies. That would be awesome. In theory, it would usher in the end of the entire NATO Zio-abomination.

Sadly, I don't trust either Le Pen or the Commies to stay true to Anti-Zionism. In fact, Marine's already abandoned all of it. And Commies have been compromised since the Bolshevik revolution or since their inception, depending on who you ask. They'd just go Syriza-cuck in all likelyhood.

So even in that scenario, a Trumpian final outcome is possible = a Kushner could still emerge as the ultimate winner. Still, it would be an awesome spectacle, and it would certainly expose more fakeness to not just the French but all other who still don't forcefully shut their eyes blind.

Posted by: Quadriad | Apr 10 2017 21:59 utc | 68

This seems like a good effort wrt the recent chemical attack.

Posted by: bakerpete | Apr 10 2017 22:13 utc | 69

This report by two real USA scientists deserves full read.
It contains the best technical descriptions and illustrations of what did/did not happen at Ghouta
along with the false assertions of Sec/State Kerry

Possible Implications of Faulty
US Technical Intelligence in the Damascus
Nerve Agent Attack of August 21, 2013
Richard Lloyd
Former UN Weapons Inspector
Tesla Laboratories Inc.|Arlington, VA
Theodore A. Postol
Professor of Science, Technology, and National Security Policy
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Washington, DC
January 14, 2
The Syrian Improvised Chemical Munitions that Were Used in the August 21,
Nerve Agent Attack in Damascus Have a Range of About 2 Kilometers
This Indicates That These Munitions Could Not Possibly Have Been Fired at
East Ghouta from the “Heart” or the Eastern Edge of the Syrian Government
Controlled Area Depicted in the Intelligence Map Published by the White
House on August 30, 2013.
This faulty Intelligence Could Have Led to an Unjustified US Military Action Based on False Intelligence.
A Proper Vetting of the Fact That the Munition Was of Such Short Range Would Have Led to a Completely Different Assessment of the Situation from the Gathered Data
Whatever the Reasons for the Egregious Errors in the Intelligence, the Source of These Errors Needs to Be Explained.
If the Source of These Errors Is Not Identified, the Problems That Led to this Intelligence Failure Will Go Uncorrected, and the Chances of a Future Policy Disaster Will Grow With Certainty

Posted by: mauisurfer | Apr 10 2017 22:19 utc | 70

Posted by: Circe | Apr 10, 2017 1:15:52 PM | 37

Kucinich/Gabbard 2020

demoblican operative unmasks himself, finally. and between now and 2020 endless war continues as normal and the paychecks continue to roll in.

Posted by: jfl | Apr 10 2017 22:31 utc | 71

Amazing! The Artist of the Deal has invented a whole new Deal (Reality?) The ReRepublic! Where the non-exceptional people pay money to the exceptional people who lie to their faces while mass murdering brownish humans. Continually. Without end. How's that for getting your money's worth.

"There's one born every minute." P. T. Barnum

Posted by: ALberto | Apr 10 2017 22:37 utc | 72

Look what Russia now accused of! (Already posted by Susan Sunflower 63 above.)

Official: Russia knew Syrian chemical attack was coming - AP Top News

The senior official said the U.S. has no proof of Russian involvement in the actual chemical attack in northern Syria. But the official said the presence of the surveillance drone over the hospital couldn't have been a coincidence, and that Russia must have known the chemical weapons attack was coming and that victims were seeking treatment.

The allegation of Russian foreknowledge is grave, even by the standards of the currently dismal U.S.-Russian relations. Although Russia has steadfastly supported Syrian President Bashar Assad's government, and they've coordinated military attacks together, Washington has never previously accused Moscow of complicity in any attack that involved the gassing of innocent civilians, including children.

I have now analyzed the video evidence that forms the alleged proof of alleged attack. I can state with high confidence that no victim of a gas attack received treatment at the White Helmets cave hospital (the one Russia allegedly helped bomb) on April 4th.

Victims were hosed with water outside the compound, but this is not treatment. (In fact it is creation of "massacre porn" for propaganda.)

Gas victims are seen in Khan Sheikhoun around noon of April 4, 2017.

These is no sign of anyone receiving treatment for gas at the White Helmets hospital after 9 am. The video record from then on is quite complete, so it is possible to rule that out.

There is the horror scene on the White Helmets site early in the morning, where victims are hosed with water. There is no visual indication that these videos were even filmed on April 4th. In fact it would be difficult to clean up the place and remove all trace of them by 9 am.

Water triage - ACLOS: Alleged Chemical Attack Khan Sheikhoun 4 April 2017

I have spent the night looking at my playlist of videos from the White Helmets cave complex. I could not find any obvious continuity errors. On the other hand, I found no proof that any chemical weapons victims were ever treated at the White Helmets hospital.

Ten of the videos form a timeline from about 9 am to late afternoon, that can with high confidence be dated to April 4th.

The White Helmets are being very secretive about the early morning events at the cave complex. The videos of the hosing scene appeared only in the afternoon. Screenshots of the videos appeared online earlier. It is uncertain if this scene happened on April 4th at all. The clips that are available are very heavily edited, 100% massacre porn with little if anything that could help in dating them. They were given to rebel news agencies and mixed with April 4 footage and interviews before publication. The strongest call for World War 3 is in the SMART media video that was viewed on Facebook 20 million times.

The hosing scene is typical White Helmets. Hysterical action and running around, without any purpose. The victims are likely brought in on white two flatbed pickup trucks. They are dumped on the ground and hosed with water from a fire engine parked inside the cave entrance. Later we see that the fire engine has been moved to near the entrance to the enclosed courtyard. At some point children are packed into ambulances to be taken away, but it is never clear if the victims are coming in or going out.

Later in the day (if this truly is the same day) there is something like an open house at the compound. Everything is very relaxed, except for the excitement caused by the midday bombing. No CW related medical work seems to be happening. Five bodies are shown, there may be ten total at the site. One girl is carried around in different levels of undress.

The first video in this series is by Orient News. Shadows show that it is about one hour later in the day than in the hosing scene. One child with blood on his feet is seen in the treatment room. One body lies covered in sheets on the rightmost table. One small child is carried outside wrapped in a red blanket. There is no sign outside of the hosing scene ever happening.

Some two hours later we see that the treatment room has been totally cleaned up. There are clean sheets on the beds, fresh IV solution bags hang from the stands, waiting for new patients. AFP interviews a medic, who said the sopital had received 200 patients today, 50 of whom were dead. The dead girl lies on the table. In the next video, by Aleppo Media Center she is carried outside. We see the body of one female outside ad the bodies of two adult men in the motorcycle garage. Earlier phots of the garage show four other bodies that have evidently been taken away. All fighting age men, most with beards.

Something happens around 11:30 am. A bomb explodes. The first we hear about it is in this fake video by a Yaman Khateeb, who reports on it on his Facebook page at 12:39. It is unlikely that a bomb outside would affect the treatment room. Instead someone seems to light a flair in the room.

Later videos show part of the building outside the cave destroyed. The same bodies are there, so it must be the same day. Hadi Alabdallah and his friend Maaz al-Shami seem extremely exited about the blasts outside. I am not sure any Syrian bomb ever fell on the compound. The building looks like it was blown up from the inside.

Posted by: Petri Krohn | Apr 10 2017 22:56 utc | 73

Perhaps a good time to pause for a little recap. Donald is going to bmob the crap out of North Korea and by extension give China a good spanking. He will also dismember Iraq and Syria and create friendly new states in the region. Israel will become safe and welcome in the area. Russia is going to be in big trouble if they don't smarten up. Iran is toast. NATO will pay their fair share of the costs or else. I'm not sure exactly how all this will make America Great Again but I'm sure Donald knows.

Posted by: dh | Apr 10 2017 23:08 utc | 74

NYT Staff wins Pulitzer Prize for something something Russia. Go one to announce themselves as winners on social media before prizes awarded. NYT Staff deny knowing results in advance, claim 'a mistake and some wishful thinking.' Classy.

@71 jfl

Posted by: MadMax2 | Apr 10 2017 23:16 utc | 75


Indeed my ass!

Where the f@@@@ck did I write they should run with the duopoly???

So who do you think should replace the grandpa Trump if he doesn't destroy the entire planet first???

I'm waiting...don't let the crickets beat you to it.

Posted by: Circe | Apr 10 2017 23:33 utc | 76

Wonder if Russia will respond to Trump aggression by doing something similar to Ukraine fascists. Say a cruise missile attack on a Ukraine base.

Posted by: Vollin | Apr 10 2017 23:34 utc | 77

Clarification on DW. Their video version on PBS World hews to the MSM side on this story like most. In fact, their coverage of the Syria story today had a couple of snippets from Khan Sheikhun with one little girl with a golden toy gun in her mouth and another little boy standing inside a stripped, bombed out car. Totally staged for effect.

Posted by: Curtis | Apr 10 2017 23:46 utc | 78

Yeah, right 65
So very true and shameless. Without any definite evidence, they declare this to be Russian prior knowledge. Rush to judgment seems to be standard now.
And it's a recon drone, not a Predator.
The news said the Syrians "targeted" the hospital again. And so it goes ...
But what of Collateral Murder, bombing a funeral, and killing people but then waiting as others rush in to help only to shoot at them, too?

Posted by: Curtis | Apr 10 2017 23:50 utc | 79

An interesting, and highly respectful, article about the new Syrian President, Dr. Bashar al-Assad, from the NY Times in 2000 ("The Shy Young Doctor at Syrias's Helm"). I wonder when they stopped referring to him as Dr. Assad?

Posted by: Madeira | Apr 11 2017 0:09 utc | 80

numbers are "better" than I feared

CBS: 57% approve of Syria strike, 70% want Congress approval for anything more, only 18% support ground troops

cbs news.

(fwiw, read tweet that said Trump bump up to 40% approval per Gallup, but can't find link to actual report. )

Posted by: Susan Sunflower | Apr 11 2017 0:14 utc | 81

No doubt YES to 34.

Is the ISIS attack in Jordan going to be used as a pretext to introduce US troops into southern Syria, allowing them to consolidate an area with the 'moderate rebels'?

Is the ISIS attack simply another attempt to draw US intervention into Syria and it is being orchestrated by other countries to manipulate the US?

Southfront is reporting:

The US military is reportedly concentrating troops and military equipment at the Syrian-Jordanian border. Local sources said that about 20 US Army armoured vehicles (including battle tanks and artillery pieces) carried on trucks were spotted in Al-Mafraq. US troops were allegedly accompanied with the Jordanian Army’s 3rd Division.

The US Special Operation Forces, the UK Special Operation Forces and units from some other countries [ which countries? KSA, Israel???] -have been conducting operations across the Syrian-Jordanian border for a long time. They even had a secret military facility inside Syria where members the so-called New Syrian Army militant group were deployed. However, it was the first time when a notable number of US armoured vehicles was reported there. The US Ro-Ro ship Liberty Passion, loaded with vehicles, had arrived to the Jordanian port of Al-Aqapa few days ago. These moves followed a meeting between the Jordanian King and the US president.

Thus, the US-led coalition could prepare a large-scale military operation in southern Syria. The goal of the operation will likely be to get control over the Syrian-Iraqi border and to reach Deir Ezzor.

It's as some of us suspected, the U.S. is aiming to control the Syrian-Iraqi border and Trumpster must be greenlighting troop escalation on the sly.

Posted by: Circe | Apr 11 2017 0:15 utc | 82

@69 bakerpete

thanks for the link, Analysis of evidence contradicts allegations on Syrian gas attacks

Posted by: jfl | Apr 11 2017 0:18 utc | 83

Curiosity killed the cat... or so they say.

Joint op statement - fake or not ?

At 5.02am twitter entity @NatDefFor, linked to al masdar news posts this tweet...
Allied forces in Syria(Russia&Iran&Syria&Hezbollah) will release an important statement soon

At 5.17am twitter entity @C_Military1 posts photo/screenshot of statement.

At 5.26am @NatDefFor (al masdar?) posts screenshot plus English translation.

The story was run in al masdar news in both English and arabic. Arabic version has full copy of statement. No English language news articles anywhere carry full translation.

Now it gets interesting. Russia officially declared it was "unaware" of the joint ops statement when asked by journalists.
Leith Fadel....This is kind of awkward:

The English language article then disappears from view at the al masdar news site, but the Arabic version remains.

It seems al masdar news, plus the @c_Military1 entity is where the story originated, with al masdar news having links to somebody involved in the joint operations room.

Posted by: Peter AU | Apr 11 2017 0:28 utc | 84

Any takers for the Russian response next time round?

I'd suggest a barrage of Kaliber missiles cluttering into the various US "air" bases in Northern Kurdish Syria and yes, destroying the runways.

Also, maybe a green light for the Turks to go after Manbij?

USAF builds massive airbase in Northern Syria to replace Turkey’s Incirlik

As the White House parried those questions, the Trump administration was going full steam ahead on the massive project of preparing to pull US air force units out of the Incirlik air base in southern Turkey, in active American use since 2002 [editor’s Note: nukes have already been relocated from Incirlik to Romania in August 2016 following the failed “coup attempt” in Turkey]. Those units were in the middle of a big moving job to the five new and expanded air bases in Syria. Their hub is to be Tabqa, which is just 110km west of the Islamic State’s Syrian capital, Raqqa. The other five are Hajar airport in the Rmelan region, two small air fields serving farm transport in Qamishli, which have been converted to military us; and a fifth in the Kurdish Kobani enclave north of Aleppo near the Syrian-Turkish border.

If that's really the reason - to replace Incirlik - then that is also a great reason to give the Turks the green light to grind the perfidious Kurds.

Surely this is the sort of direct asymmetrical response we should be looking for - and perhaps an offer for the Kurds. Kick out the Americans and this bombardment ends.

Posted by: Julian | Apr 11 2017 0:39 utc | 85


Trump saw a bump in his own poll numbers as well. The president's approval jumped to 43 percent after the missile strike. "The increase in approval is driven mainly by independents, who are now at 42 percent approval up from 34 percent, while Republicans have held steady," CBS reported.

The increase in approval is driven mainly by independents I'm not buying this. His approval increased among Neocons and Neolibs.

It's not deep state twisting his arm to bomb Syria; it's all politically motivated.

Posted by: Circe | Apr 11 2017 0:40 utc | 86

Posted by: Circe | Apr 10, 2017 8:15:34 PM | 82

I can't find reports of an ISIS attack in Jordan ... that really would be big news since Jordan "notoriously" closed it borders tightly shut a couple years ago (after its fighter pilot was tortured and killed) -- as I recall Jordan instituted a "shoot on sight" for all people crossing outside of border controls.

Posted by: Susan Sunflower | Apr 11 2017 0:42 utc | 87

To add to my 86: It's not America First; it's Trump First.

Posted by: Circe | Apr 11 2017 0:48 utc | 88

The other reason to turn on the Kurds is because it keeps the Turks relatively "neutral" vis-a-vis Russia/USA and it also allows them to keep their hold on their bargaining chip/ ransom hostage Incirlik airbase.

Sorry Kurds. You made your choice. You must lie in it or quickly wisen up.

Posted by: Julian | Apr 11 2017 0:54 utc | 89

@71 jfl
@75 MadMax2

Kucinich/Gabbard 2020 ?!

From the mouths of babes ;)

IIRC last position was option D, neither party, no-one, none of the above. Now ?

Posted by: Outraged | Apr 11 2017 1:34 utc | 90

> . . . .does not treat elite interest involved elections as if they were
> casual "hobby club" elections. Therefor it is able to effectively
> disrupt the spoiler effect, and thus, the two-party "system".
> The Approval method is inadequately differentiative for degree of
> preference, and thus cannot support any strategy to overcome the spoiler
> effect. Other methods are more complex, and increased complexity,
> however slight, generally leads to follow-on dilemmas that favor the
> strategies of the elites. The Strategic Hedge Simple Score Voting
> method is the only one that can effectively overcome elite strategies.
> You might be interested in my post at:
> - private
> Thank you in advance for your kind attention.
> blues (Robert K. Joyce)

--Wonder what Joyce is talking about?
Consulting said post, he wrote in his key paragraph:
Strategic hedge simple score voting can be described in one simple
sentence: Strategically bid no vote at all for undesired candidates
(ignore them as though they did not exist), or strategically cast from
one to ten votes (or five to ten votes, for easier counting) for any
number of candidates you prefer (up to some reasonable limit of, say,
twelve candidates, so people don't hog voting booths), and then simply
add all the votes up.

Well, not exactly a "simple sentence," sorry.
I do not know what he meant. It seems like he meant either
(a) What I call "score voting" aka "range voting," sum-based version:
Each ballot provides a numerical score for each and every candidate
on an 0-9 scale;
candidate with highest sum of scores wins; treat unscored candidates
as scored 0 by that ballot.

(b) What has been called "cumulative voting":
Same as (a) except the sum of all the scores on your ballot is
required to be <=10.

Either interpretation, I fail to see the "strategic hedge" new
contribution, if any.

Cumulative voting is neither as good nor as simple as range voting.
And I think average-based scoring, with unscored candidates
treated as "unscored" not as "0,"
is superior to the sum-based version in (a) above.

In any case I would recommend to Joyce that he actually clearly state
what the hell he is
talking about, in step-by-step fashion that is absolutely impossible
to misinterpret. Rather than just spew enthusiastic incoherence.

Warren D. Smith!topic/electionscience/9FgW-Urw8ZU

I painstakingly shun "social media" such as Facebook, Google Plus, etc. in order to make a token defense of what remains of my privacy.

Strategic Hedge Simple Score Voting is indeed not technically distinct from Score (or Range) voting, except for some inconspicuous details that are mandated by its special objectives. Its objectives include:

(+) It must effectively disrupt the spoiler effect, and thus end the two-party system.
(+) It must be very resistant to the influence of the entrenched political apparatus.
(+) It must be, and also give the appearance of being, very simple and comprehensible.
(+) It must be completely compatible with the decentralized hand counting of paper ballots.

For example, the possible votes on a ballot are: Ignore a candidate on the ballot as if they did not exist; give from one (or, say, five) to ten votes to a candidate on the ballot; or write in a candidate and similarly give from one (or, say, five) to ten votes to that candidate. And that is all.

Why give from one (or, say, five) to ten votes rather than give from zero to nine votes? Well, the common voters must employ strategy if they are to defeat the entrenched political apparatus. And having ten as the greatest vote simplifies this strategy, since giving eight votes is clearly seen to produce a sacrifice of 20% of the influence of a given vote entry, giving six votes produces a sacrifice of 40%, etc.

(To be continued.)

Posted by: blues | Apr 11 2017 1:42 utc | 91

The signals coming out of the White House right now are too confusing to draw any conclusions about Trump's intentions for Syria. I don't think he knows himself.

He's got his cassus belli now. There's no amount of evidence that the chemical attack was a false flag that will make the slightest bit of difference. Does anyone seriously think it will? Sean Spicer said today that maybe barrel bombs are a red line. So they will do what they want.

One can hope that the Tomahawks were a one-off meant to put the shit up everybody's back. Mission accomplished. Putin can live with the one but if the strikes continue it put's him in an untenable position. Does he pack up and fuck off? What about Iran and Hezbollah? Is it fight here or fight at home later?

We will have to wait for Tillerson and Lavrov's conflab to see if there's any hope of dialing this back.

So the war drums are beating in the ME and the home crowd is largely lapping it up. They say now that Trump is presidential. He has gravitas, In fact, he's got so much fucking gravitas that he's got a battle group steaming towards North Korea while at the same time poking a stick in Putin's cage in Syria. In a worst case scenario he could find himself embroiled in two wars on different sides of the globe. Did Mattis and McMaster dream this shit up? I guess if you got military guys at the top end then you're gonna get military solutions. Trump fired all the diplomats.

Anyway, if Trump elects to make war in Syria he's gonna need more of everything. The run-ups to the Gulf Wars took weeks and months and they are impossible to do discreetly. When we see that happening we'll know it's on.

It's too bad that he will get an inevitable bump in the polls. Trump desperately wants approval and if sabre rattling is what it takes then that is what we're gonna get.

Posted by: peter | Apr 11 2017 1:48 utc | 92

@74 dh.. it is going to become great again cause the american smuks are going to buy what donald sells them! buy american, lol... buy, buy, buy! or is it bye, bye, bye??

@80 madeira.. that is kinda like the saddam hussian story - he was the cia's man, until he wasn't... cia/nyt - some sort of weird connection their - same brain basically..

polls? for retards.. anyone who believes that shit needs to stop reading them and follow reality..

red lines.. the exceptional warmonger nation doesn't have one... they got a green light to bomb, bomb, destroy, murder and etc. 24/7.. don't need no stinkin' congress approval, un approval.. fuck international law.. remember - they are the exceptional nation! no red lines on anything.. green light for the war party 24/7...

Posted by: james | Apr 11 2017 2:10 utc | 93

Anyone still here that thinks Mr. Trump is the progressive answer for the American workers? Americans, as a whole, have to be some of the most gullible morons on the planet. "Make America hate again."

Posted by: ben | Apr 11 2017 2:15 utc | 94

Wilkerson: Trump Attack on Syria Driven by Domestic Politics

From TRNN:

Posted by: ben | Apr 11 2017 2:18 utc | 95

Re: Posted by: peter | Apr 10, 2017 9:48:44 PM | 92

In a worst case scenario he could find himself embroiled in two wars on different sides of the globe.

In a worst-case scenario?

No, that's not worst-case at all, that's almost guaranteed.

China will go the grab on Taiwan as well, they'll pour troops into the Korean Peninsula and try and kick the US off, sink the naval group.

As for Syria - a similar scenario.

The question, as it often seems to be, is what will European NATO countries do.

Will they try and support a NATO march on Moscow or will they yank support for NATO and leave the Yanks out to dry?

I'm less talking about the Eastern Euro nutcases here (Baltics, Poland, Ukraine), and more about Western & Central & Southern Europe.

If things really get serious, I'd expect a mass withdrawal from NATO in Europe.

A few phone calls from Putin/Lavrov should set them straight.

Withdraw from this insane venture and we'll re-program our nukes to other destinations far and wide.

Posted by: Julian | Apr 11 2017 2:20 utc | 96

I think the analysis of the strike on the air field is flawed, after watching this for the last 25 years. The strike was real and a probing attack in force. It was to get ready for a full scale invasion to setup safe zones and split up Syria since NATO does not have the required force or funding for a Iraqi style invasion. But they do have limited resources to keep Russia and allies at bay and enough support to keep anyone else from stepping in too deeply to oppose them. The response from Russia and allies also shows this and that if they openly defy then NATO will escalate it to the point of breaking any red lines that Russia imposes. The non official low level response via proxies like al manar and press tv shows there will be a response for breaking red lines. The US already said there will be follow up attacks. And unless Syria itself can defend itself much better than currently, things will worsen. Read the reaction from others to this openly setup false flag and aggression, the saudis still got a lot of money to hire anyone for anything. They cant defeat Syria, but they sure can achieve their goals which it seems currently to bypass Russia for Oil and Gas and the logistics between Iran and the Mediterranean. If anyone puts up a red line, Nato under the US will immediately break it under some pretext of R2P. Heck they have spent close to 100 billion on this adventure. Iran has been supplying Syria with pretty much all expenses at 5 bil or so per year in oil and food. Ofcourse it is all peanuts in the long run compared to the benefits.

Russia thought they could cow the US to fight the terrorists the US created and is funding. It is pretty clear if Russia takes it too far to defeat the Nato proxy force, the US will step in itself. It is an extinctional threat to the US hegemony and its vassals. Russia is making Syria strong but they are now out of time and anything left, they better do it fast. Especially now that the US has found out Russia wont oppose the US directly by calling not only its bluff. But its called Iran's, Syria's and Hezbollah's bluffs as well. Their response will be mild comparatively to what just was done openly and directly.

Posted by: Igor Bundy | Apr 11 2017 2:46 utc | 97

Required logistics lead time for materiel pre-deployment in advance of ~100,000-150,000 conventional combat troops deployed 'on the ground' is minimum ~3-6 months. Cannot be realistically fully hidden/disguised/concealed. And no, the support for existing SF/Advisors and support units in Syria nor reduced existing deployments in Iran locale/region nor in SK/Japan, doesn't count in any of the theaters. Same same whether Syria, Iran, North Korea. All very unlikely re current speculative 'chatter'.

The 'Threat of', sanctions, warmongering/profiteering and an escalated sustained strategy of 'tension' to feed the MICC, and corral vassals, yes indeed.

Actual War with Iran, North Korea or a conventional 'Invasion' of Syria all risk known catastrophic results and WWIII, especially NK/Syria. Chickenhawk warmonger neocon/libs have not a clue re the real world military risks/consequences involved. Then again, we do have Afghanistan/Iraq ... though Afghanistan was feeble and Iraqi forces/capabilities had been incrementally obliterated for 23 years, between '80 and 2002 via two wars and endless daily 'No-Fly-Zone' bombing for over a decade ...

Syria, Iran, NK are not comparative ...

Might even see a General/Admiral resign again, so as to speak freely, if it was being prepped for real. They're not all keen to commit their soldiers/sailors/airmen to death and maiming nor risk war with near peer militaries or nuclear Armageddon.

Abandoning Incirclik for supposed permanent facilities in NE Syria is fanciful. Such bases represent a massive sunk investment/asset, and are where they are for stability reasons, would expect Erdogans assassination/removal/couped before ever giving up Incirclik. If it was to be abandoned, however unlikely, then an equivalent would be runup or expanded, in advance, where ?

Just sayin'.

Posted by: Outraged | Apr 11 2017 2:55 utc | 98

jfl, MadMax2, Outraged: Circe's partisanship

1) Circe complains about the duopoly from time to time. He has even called for a "revolution" (while urging people to take to the streets to protest Trump).

Yet he supports a future Presidential ticket comprise of two leading Democrats

2) Circe supports Democrats from the "progressives wing" of the Party.

Yet he was silent when Obama-Clinton poodle Tom Perez was elected Chair of the DNC.

3) Circe complains bitterly about Trump as a Zionist stooge.

But said nothing about the dirty tricks used to elect to elect Tom Perez as DNC Chair. Haim Saban ("I am a one-issue guy, and that issue is Israel") led a smear campaign against progressive Ellison, painting him as anti-semetic:

Saban’s attack on Ellison has been decried by journalists and liberal leaders. Voices as diverse as Glenn Greenwald and ThinkProgress have labeled the comments part of a “smear campaign” against Ellison.

4) Circe's first comment at MoA deflected criticism of Hillary's Jewish support ("Top Five Clinton Donors Are Jewish" - How Anti-Semitic Is This Fact?). In his comment, Circe:

> added disinfo about Adelson's contributions to Trump, which were meager by comparison to financial and other support provided to Hillary;

> attacked on b/MoA: "too late for those that were banned for seeing this pattern first then daring to expose same";

> attacked Trump supporters at MoA as "... a bunch of Zionist rats congregating here in sheep's clothing."

<> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <>

Circe has proven to be right about some things about Trump but he has been wrong about a lot of other things. He strikes me as one of the "Never Trump" crowd. Trump's betrayal doesn't mean that Circe's attacks on him were prescient; only that the "Never Trump" crowd helped to pressure Trump in such a way that forced/excused Trump's betrayal.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Apr 11 2017 2:57 utc | 99

@ Jackrabbit

Suspect there is significantly more to it than just a never-Trump 'Idée fixe' ... yet hardly worth the effort nor even the pixels ... just abuse, mis-attribution, evasion/diversion & radio-silence in response. C'est La Vie.

Posted by: Outraged | Apr 11 2017 3:13 utc | 100

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