Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
May 05, 2019

The MoA Week In Review - OT 2019-25

In today's WaPo: Guaidó says opposition overestimated military support for uprising No kidding!

Caitlin Johnstone - Venezuela: Establishment Talking Points Translation Key

Other stuff:

Tim Shorrock on the North Korean embassy raid:

Did the CIA Orchestrate an Attack on the North Korean Embassy in Spain? - The Nation

A mostly good roundup on the 737 MAX by The VergeRedline - The many human errors that brought down the Boeing 737 MAX. But is this really a 'human error'?

The episode underscores what The Seattle Times found after a review of documents and interviews with more than a dozen current and former Boeing engineers who have been involved in airplane certification in recent years, including on the 737 MAX: Many engineers, employed by Boeing while officially designated to be the FAA’s eyes and ears, faced heavy pressure from Boeing managers to limit safety analysis and testing so the company could meet its schedule and keep down costs.

That pressure increased when the FAA stopped dealing directly with those designated employees — called “Authorized Representatives” or ARs — and let Boeing managers determine what was presented to the regulatory agency.

Who could have known? Capt. Sullenberger: "in this ultra-cost-competitive global aviation industry, when it comes to costs, nothing is more costly than an accident. Nothing."

Bloomberg has a rage against Chinese made computer equipment. A 2018 story, The Big Hack: How China Used a Tiny Chip to Infiltrate U.S. Companies, was denied by everyone involved, including Apple and Amazon who use the Chinese made computers. Recently Bloomberg made claims about a "backdoor" in Huawei equipment: The West Finally Has Its Huawei Smoking Gun. The "backdoor" turned out to be a diagnostics Telnet port on the non-public (LAN) side of some 3G access equipment. A non-issue that was found and fixed in 2011/2012. The always snarky Register responds: Sinister secret backdoor found in networking gear perfect for government espionage: The Chinese are – oh no, wait, it's Cisco again - Better ban this gear from non-US core networks, right?

NASA did not renew its contract for rides on the Russian Soyuz missiles to the International Space Station:  Russia to End U.S. Space Station Rides in April, Pressuring NASA. It was not concerned as SpaceX and Boeing were under contract to build new vehicles to transport U.S. astronauts. But now both projects are late and SpaceX just destroyed its crew capsule during a ground test. That will cause more delays. Will the 50% U.S. made space stations no longer have U.S. astronauts?


“The younger generation now tells me how tough things are, give me a break ... I have no empathy” - Joe Biden (video)

Excellent campaign slogan Joe. Excellent:


Use as open thread ...


Posted by b on May 5, 2019 at 17:08 UTC | Permalink

next page »

Oh, show us the way to the next whiskey bar!
Oh don't ask why,

Reading Nikolai Tolstoy's excellent new book on that monstrous regime, I kept thinking of Bertolt Brecht and what a fine Brechtian character Stalin was. But Brecht was a Communist Party member. Rather a typical intellectual dupe, really. He was too busy portraying Hitler as a gangster to look over his shoulder at Uncle Joe.

Posted by: FromTheHague | May 5 2019 17:36 utc | 1

We have also the nazis to worry about, the worse for us is that they now go over there disguised, even as "leftists" by trying to hijack some of the hisotric claims of the left to catch votes, and grab power again.
At least in the 40s-50s they talked like nazis, walked like nazis and seemd like nazis and even dressed and acted like nazis.

Young generations now have a prospect of life of quite worse quality than their parents, adding much lower wages, and much more insecurity in general with respect to everything. They start being indebted almost since the very moment they are born, and that not counting their sharing of the nation´s debt as they see the light. This is so at least in the US, but also, although not so hard, so far, in Europe.

But the worst of all is the total demobilization which they suffer after decades of depolitization and demonization of what is the only people´s possible ideology, the left.
Then is the general depressing mood the elders in charge inflict in the rest of society, especially the youngest so as to have them in low energy mod to avoid what otherwise would be mandatory demonstrations every day for every reason ,especially growing Us wars everywhere in the planet and their costs, monetary and reputational level. Soon, very soon, US Americans will have almost nowhere to go without being pointed out and resulting suspicious, as happens to the Israelis for the same reasons, and that is the result of theri government attitude.
Sow winds and gather storms....

Posted by: Sasha | May 5 2019 17:46 utc | 2

Measles is also present again, even in new York, and wait for polio as well, as soon as living conditions decay a it more, if needed, with already an important percentage of US population living in cars and caravans, because of another economic crack.

For to have no envy, we have even middle ages bubonic fever, as they are reporting an outbrick in Mongolia...

Joe Biden, as it is shown by his good teeth, has never suffered any economic need, nor have had to overcome any difficulty in all his life, so as to give lessons to the whole population which finds it difficult long ago to make ends meet

Posted by: Sasha | May 5 2019 17:55 utc | 3

Space X's costly mishap during tests of a mission-ready emergency crew-recovery system probably would have been less costly had they done a "Boeing" and cheated by using a cargo capsule instead of a capsule built for life-support. But their coy-ness is 'interesting' considering that ALL of the wreckage was available for scrutiny.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | May 5 2019 18:19 utc | 4

hey sasha.. i agree with your observations here today.. thanks..

cbc radio this morning had an interesting overview from michael enright.. hopefully this doesn't stir up a hornets nest..

Barack Obama was a greater enemy of the free press than Trump

jane yesterday and boki68 today.. oh wel..

Posted by: james | May 5 2019 18:36 utc | 5
"U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a March speech that anti-Zionism - opposition to Israel’s existence as a homeland for the Jewish people - was a form of anti-Semitism, or hostility toward Jews, that was on the rise worldwide and that Washington would “fight it relentlessly”.
The State Department’s special envoy for monitoring and combating anti-Semitism, Elan Carr, said this U.S. position could spell reviews of ties with foreign governments or leaders."

This comes after the Israeli attack on Gaza. I have put it here rather than the Gaza Israel thread as nothing can be done there until US power is destroyed. Same with the Wahhabi's of KSA and the Nazi's of eastern Europe.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | May 5 2019 19:06 utc | 6

Dismantling Uncle Joe, it seems that he was also young...long ago, one day in the past...although he seemed quite older at his 29 than Ilhan Omar or AOC today, is spite of not giving ever a hit to water during his whole life, since starting at politics just when he finished university to live from story telling...

The teeth he wears today are new,evidently, of other size of his own, but anyway, nothing you can afford when hardly making ends meet....

Posted by: Sasha | May 5 2019 19:12 utc | 7

Ilhan Omar is one of the only US politicians to oppose the US attacks on Venezuela.

Posted by: Sasha | May 5 2019 19:19 utc | 8

teleSUR's correspondent in Washington was subjected to racist abuse from Juan Guaido supporters in the US.

Then they say the elders that we do not have to cop with nazis? Well, just with all those nazis they support and finance in several locations at once...

Posted by: Sasha | May 5 2019 19:22 utc | 9

Counterpunch seems to be a shadow of its former self, but they still have some good stuff every now and then.

Roaming Charges: Biden in Plain Sight

Biden would be a more honorable politician if on an issue like abortion he would simply say as a Catholic he opposed it on moral grounds. Fine. That’s not what he does. He waffles and tries to restrict abortions so that in a practical sense they become only available to the rich.

"More honorable" in the current US political environment is a mighty low bar. Playing the "Catholic" card is just a way to weasel out. Good Catholics understand better than me how the Vatican is not interested in anything except maintaining and expanding Church power. In Rome they haven't given up on again becoming a major player in the world any more than the Brits have in London.

"Only available to the rich" is the way I expect it to play out. The States and the Congress and the Supreme Court will create so many barriers only the Wealthy will be able to either navigate them or bypass them altogether by flying overseas. Embryos and even "pre"-embryos are really precious things - until they get born. After that the little bastards are on their own. In fact, at this stage they're just as "precious" as a typical kid in Gaza or Yemen.

One other quote:

If you don’t think Biden’s the perfect person to represent the Democratic Party, you haven’t paid much attention to what the Democratic Party has become over the last 25 years: interventionist, anti-regulation, pro-austerity, merciless on black crime and devoted to Israel.

I still haven't heard of Pelosi speaking out on Trump's lawlessness in Venezuela. It may have happened, but none of my headline sites have bothered to mention such an event.

Posted by: Zachary Smith | May 5 2019 19:46 utc | 10

james @6

Jimmy Dore has a short video that describes the problem: Trump Is A Symptom Of A Larger Problem.

Dore makes the same point I have: "Trump is a Symptom of 40 years of NeoLiberalism and the Corporate Capture of the U.S. government." Railing against Trump only sets up the next smooth-talking stooge who will start a fresh new con.

Dore traces the problem primarily to Democratic Party's turning to identity politics instead of representing the working class. They sold us out. Clinton and Obama are just "Republican light" aka "Centrist" "Third Way" Democrats. "Centrist" = establishment-serving con artists.

"Managed democracy" or "guided democracy":

is a formally democratic government that functions as a de facto autocracy. Such governments are legitimized by elections that are free and fair, but do not change the state's policies, motives, and goals.

In other words, the government controls elections so that the people can exercise all their rights without truly changing public policy. While they follow basic democratic principles, there can be major deviations towards authoritarianism. Under managed democracy, the state's continuous use of propaganda techniques prevents the electorate from having a significant impact on policy.

The concept of a "guided democracy" was developed in the 20th century by Walter Lippmann in his seminal work Public Opinion (1922) and by Edward Bernays in his work Crystallizing Public Opinion.

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

RT has a good video on Yellow Vest protestors (on homepage). It's kind long for the info that it provides. I suggest skipping some parts.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | May 5 2019 20:00 utc | 11

thanks jr.. i agree with jimmy dore then! does his show ever releases transcripts? i can't stomach watching videos and supporting google! as for the quotes - i agree with them... i was reading cbc today) about the guy at the border having his cell phone and laptop confiscated... we're essentially in a totalitarian mindset here and plenty of canucks seem to be okay with it.. the top comment to the article, which i fully agree with is here -

"For some reason people come up with this gem, "If you have nothing to hide, why worry about it." Which totally misses the point. In a free and democratic society the onus is never placed on the citizen to prove their innocence. Only in a totalitarian state is such a arrogation demanded.

As Benjamin Franklin once aptly stated 280 years ago: "Those who would give up essential liberty, to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety."

Posted by: james | May 5 2019 20:12 utc | 12

Sasha's video of the early Biden interview sure highlights another aspect of US culture, one that has been around since USA began. Money politics, exceptionalism, and in the last 50 years or so, Zionism.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | May 5 2019 20:32 utc | 13

SSJ-100 jet burned down in Moscow

Reportedly 13 dead of 75+6 total.

Reportedly lightning strike on take-off (sky was heavy in Moscow starting around 15:00, with rain started about 17:00).

Reportedly first landing approach was cancelled for excessive velocity, second approach was too late - fly-by-wire system died. On the ground jet started turning which broke out landing gear to sides, which made them penetrate fuel tanks.

Posted by: Arioch | May 5 2019 20:33 utc | 14

news line (perhaps, unconfirmed hearsays grade yet) on SU 1492 disaster

21:47 - 13 certainly dead, includiong two children
23:33 - 37 of 78 cetainly survived

...passengers were picking luggage, slowing down evacuation

...evacuation was complete in 55 seconds, with legal minimum of 99 seconds

...jet was circling for about 20 minutes until trying to land, had no communication with ground

Posted by: Arioch | May 5 2019 20:43 utc | 15

... of 99 seconds

of 90

Posted by: Arioch | May 5 2019 20:44 utc | 16

The link above published anonymous passenger words, like "yes, it was the lightning, i saw white flash", later removed. When published it had queer timestamp like 0:30 or something, with actual time being like 23:40

Posted by: Arioch | May 5 2019 20:47 utc | 17

More links published, but hidden. Guess MoA limited me, happens....

Posted by: Arioch | May 5 2019 20:56 utc | 18

I'm betting the reason Trump is threatening to end the trade talks and increase tarriffs is because China refuses to quit buying Iranian oil.

Posted by: Sorghum | May 5 2019 21:11 utc | 19

Never Mind the Bollocks @1--

Thanks for the poll link! 11K votes=95% who think Assange isn't a criminal, while 570=5% think he's a criminal. The outcome is the polar opposite compared to views of BigLie Media propagandists like Maddow.

Pepe Escobar provides another BRI update about a week following the Massive BRI Forum held in Beijing. Within his item, Pepe links to an article [Membership required to view] by the founder of a now 10-year-old Chinese think tank, Center for China and Globalization whose English language versions of their Chinese originals lag but are at least available. For the first time that I can recall, Pepe cites the importance of Myanmar for BRI:

"At least nine of no fewer than 23 projects, part of the China-Myanmar Economic Corridor, are rolling – including a special economic zone (SEZ) in Kyauk Phyu in the west, the Kyauk Phyu-Kunming railway and three border cooperation zones in Kachin and Shan states. Myanmar is absolutely key for China to enjoy strategic access to the Indian Ocean."

The above shows why the push to promote a humanitarian crisis in Myanmar, just as one is pushed at every strategic node of the project. And as a development project, BRI already makes the long touted Marshall Plan small peanuts. And it's not like the IMF and World Bank could have come up with a very similar idea but didn't despite its obvious need thus begging the question, Why? IMO, the answer lies in the West's Zero-sum philosophical dogma that actually prevents a nation from developing while enslaving it to Neocolonialism. 131 out of the 191 Un-Member nations are now involved, which includes a good portion of NATO. All of which leave Trump, Pompeo and their neoliberalcon allies spouting their bluster while out blowing in the wind.

Posted by: karlof1 | May 5 2019 21:12 utc | 20

Posted by: Arioch | May 5, 2019 4:33:57 PM | 15
(Ru airliner lands in flames)

Al Jazeera had spectacular film of touch-down, huge flames and smoke plume from wing. Fuselage ahead of wings definitely not on fire. Only 1 fatality at time of A-J report but few facts known. An aviation expert declined to speculate on cause beyond 'probably mechanical failure'

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | May 5 2019 21:26 utc | 21

Just a short follow up to the news about China trade "breakdown"

Yep, and default on US debt is coming as part of the dance to ???

The elite have had since 2008 to set this up and its show time

I think I will go for my walk through the local park and see if the local Osprey has fledglings yet

Once empire is stymied in Venezuela for sure then Gaza is next or maybe Gaza events will outplay others.....the pot is boiling and the plates are spinning.

What a crazy species we are to negotiate so many human futures in this manner.

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 5 2019 21:31 utc | 22

karlof1 | May 5, 2019 5:12:19 PM | 21

speaking of Maddow...

Posted by: Desolation Row | May 5 2019 21:53 utc | 23

Good Caitlyn Johnstone piece on the difference between Maddow and Carlson's approach...


Posted by: KC | May 5 2019 21:57 utc | 24

Re: my above link (you're welcome those of you who have problems with long URLs!):

Contrast Maddow’s “Trump is making John Bolton act too nice” monologue with a recent segment on Fox News’ Tucker Carlson Tonight, conducted in the aftermath of last week’s attempt at a military coup by opposition leader Juan Guaido. Journalist Anya Parampil appeared on the show and delivered a scathing criticism of the Trump administration’s heinous actions in Venezuela based on her findings during her recent visit to that country. She was allowed to speak uninhibited and without attack, even bringing up the Center for Economic and Policy Research study which found Trump administration sanctions responsible for the deaths of over 40,000 Venezuelans, a story that has gone completely ignored by western mainstream media.

Carlson introduced the interview with a clip from an earlier talk he’d had with Florida Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart, who supports direct military action to overthrow Maduro and whose arguments Carlson had attacked on the basis that it would cost American lives and cause a refugee crisis. Parampil said the media is lying about what’s happening in Venezuela and compared Guaido’s coup attempt to a scenario in which Hillary Clinton had refused to cede the election, banded together 24 US soldiers and attempted to take the White House by force.

“I was there for a month earlier this year,” Parampil said. “The opposition has no popular support. Juan Guaido proved today, once again, that he will only ride in to power on the back of a US tank. And what’s more, we hear about a humanitarian crisis there, Tucker, but what we never hear is that is the intended result of US sanctions that have targeted Venezuelans since 2015, sanctions which according to a report that was released just last week by the Center for Economic and Policy Research has led to the deaths of 40,000 Venezuelans, and will lead to the death of thousands more if these sanctions aren’t overturned. President Trump, if he truly cared for the Venezuelan people, and the American people for that matter, he would end this disastrous policy. He would end the sanctions, and he would look into John Bolton’s eyes, into Elliott Abrams’ eyes, into Mike Pompeo’s eyes, and say you are fired. You are leading me down a disastrous path, another war for oil. Something the president said–he was celebrated by the American people when he said Iraq was a mistake, and now he’s willing to do it again.”

“I believe in an open debate,” Carlson responded. “And I’m not sure I agree with everything you’ve said, but I’m glad that you could say it here. And you were just there, and I don’t think you’d be allowed on any other show to say that.”

“No I certainly don’t,” Parampil replied. “And I really appreciate you giving me the opportunity, because President Trump promised to drain the swamp, and he flooded his national security team with that exact swamp.”

Posted by: KC | May 5 2019 21:59 utc | 25

Maddow is the MSM version of a liberal. She's a DNC warmonger's warmonger - the blue flavor warmonger to counter the red flavor warmonger. This became apparent 10 years ago. She is the MSM version of a lefty. Not leftist really, just a 1969 Nixon to put up against all the late model Bush Clinton Obama Trump lunatics.

Posted by: Kristan hinton | May 5 2019 22:07 utc | 26

Kristan hinton @27--

Maddow is known as Mad Cow in our household and seems to be Pelosi's pet. But then lots of people will take $7Million/yr to spout lies and not worry who dies from them.

Posted by: karlof1 | May 5 2019 22:15 utc | 27

Minister of Health said they are dealing with 34+4 survivors, she explicitly refused to speak about rest of 78, she said they were not presented to medics.

That sounds grave.

Posted by: Arioch | May 5 2019 22:22 utc | 28

Zachary Smith #11

Counter Punch is a wimp. Sometimes I regard it the same as Mother Jones:- taken over by some shady Soros team.

Name changes to accurately reflect content:

Pulled punches
Butterfly kiss
Stroke my ego
kiss my arse...

Posted by: uncle tungsten | May 5 2019 22:30 utc | 29

@Posted by: Arioch | May 5, 2019 6:22:34 PM | 29

What are you trying to mean? Sounds like you would be suggesting something....
Just take a view at Tass, RT, and Sputnik and they have declared the rest died, apart from 37 survivors, hence they were not presented to the medics.

Posted by: Sasha | May 5 2019 22:38 utc | 30

Thank you Karlof1 it certainly offers an explanation for why the west has been so keen on attacking Burma.

Why I keep saying Burma (could be unimportant), the following is from Wikipedia (who calls it Myanmar) and I've heard the same from Burmese:

In 1989, the military government officially changed the English translations of many names dating back to Burma's colonial period or earlier, including that of the country itself: "Burma" became "Myanmar". The renaming remains a contested issue.[19] Many political and ethnic opposition groups and countries continue to use "Burma" because they do not recognise the legitimacy of the ruling military government or its authority to rename the country.[20]

I find Chinese people extremely easy to like but I do know they can be the worst bosses ever (waaay too strict) :D What they're accomplishing is amazing though.

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | May 5 2019 22:47 utc | 31

KC @26--

Thanks for the excerpt. Caitlin in her conclusion first says, "It’s absolutely horrifying that this [Tucker Carlson's program on FOX] is the closest thing that America has to a platform for sanity in the mainstream media."

She then closes with how she sees things from her perch down under:

"America’s political landscape has restructured itself so much and the need to propagandize the masses has grown so severe that the liberal pundits are attacking the foreign policy of a widely reviled president for being insufficiently hawkish, and the only pundit with a foot anywhere near the brake pedal works on the news media network which was most aggressive in selling the American public on the Iraq invasion. Trump’s ostensible opposition are not just letting his worst foreign policy impulses run unchecked, but are actually egging him on, and the only ones asking meaningful questions about it are the leftists and antiwar voices who are aggressively silenced, and Tucker motherfucking Carlson. This is insane, and it needs to end."

The "restructuring" Caitlin refers to I interpret thusly: The Republicans have always lied about most everything they do policy-wise, foreign and domestically, then along came Obama-Biden which necessitated the Democrats now having to lie about everything just like Republicans. By contrast, Sanders hasn't gone along with this change as well as a few other D Party reps, nor has a populous that's grown independent enough in its actions that it requires greatly intensified "propagandizing". One tell-tale fulcrum is where all politicos stand on Medicare For All, which is now favored by over 80% of the nation. It's also a much more difficult issue to constantly lie about. And IMO, current domestic issues have broad enough support from the masses to put a spanner into the Corporate Duopoly, but Herculean efforts will be required to make that reality.

Posted by: karlof1 | May 5 2019 22:54 utc | 32

Sunny Runny - our host has written quite a bit about Myanmar. Just do a search on the site. I learned a lot! ( as always )

To quote Mark Stewart and the Mafia "As the veneer of democracy starts to fade..."

Posted by: roza shanina | May 5 2019 22:56 utc | 33

karlof1@ 33

Good for the US that it will likely never nationalize health care as is supported by 80% of the population, as that would be a tryrannical usurpation of the "democracy" of the 5% oligarchs and their hangers-on who currently profit on death and sickness in the true "entrepreneurial" spirit of American "democratic capitalism."

Posted by: WJ | May 5 2019 23:06 utc | 34

Guaidó said in interview to the WaPo that his parliament could approve an American invasion of Venezuela

My dear friend ambassador John Bolton, thank you for all the help you gave to this just cause. Thanks for the option, we'll study it and, probably, will take it into account to solve this crisis. If necessary, maybe we'll approve it. answered Guaidó at the question about if he would accept an American invasion of Venezuela.

Posted by: vk | May 5 2019 23:17 utc | 35

@ KC #25

I get paranoid real fast when unexpected URL difficulties arise. I cut/pasted your first link, then one I found myself into a word processor, and both of them had a string of numbers at the end. Different numbers! Finally learned those numbers were unnecessary and I had something which worked.

On Venezuela, Tucker Airs Anti-Trump Ideas While Maddow Wants John Bolton To Be More Hawkish

I can sometimes navigate the internet, but I'm aware there are people out there who can tie it in knots. Corporate meddling is becoming an issue as well. Yesterday or day before my Firefox browser suddenly had all the addons disabled. The Mozilla company must have gotten an earful, so they've half-fixed it. Now the addons are working again, but have a big warning label on each and every one of them.

Back to Maddow. There are people who adore her, and I believe I've mentioned being taken to task by one of them. Seems I hang out at "weird" sites like this one when I could be getting ALL my news from Maddow - just as this person bragged about doing.

Posted by: Zachary Smith | May 5 2019 23:18 utc | 36

Sasha @ 4:

Bubonic plague is endemic in Mongolia, it is where past outbreaks of plague have originated. The native rodents in Mongolia harbour the bacterium. Killing them all to eradicate the disease would severely disrupt the ecosystems in that part of Asia.

I should have thought most travel advice on Mongolia caution tourists against eating raw marmots or parts thereof. Mongolia actually forbids its own citizens from eating marmots.

A bubonic plague outbreak in the US is not impossible and may even be closer than we realise: it is endemic among squirrels in parts of the Rocky Mountains region in the western US. The disease was brought to that part of the world in the 1890s by ships travelling from southern China and Hongkong, where an outbreak was in progress at the time, to California. It spread via fleas from rats to another animals and then to the native wildlife. People who hunt rodents and other small animals out of necessity (because they can't afford food in cities and towns) will be most at risk of catching the disease from fleas that have fed on infected animals.

Posted by: Jen | May 5 2019 23:26 utc | 37

@ desert fox #35

Sometimes bad things happen because of carelessness, accidents, and Acts of God. Even if the cesspool state has created a wonder-weapon, I seriously doubt them using it on a commercial airliner in the capital of a distant foreign nation.

Posted by: Zachary Smith | May 5 2019 23:27 utc | 38

Plague is easily treated with antibiotics. People die of it in the U.S. because it is so rare that doctors do not recognize the symptoms. In an epidemic, they would recognize them.

Posted by: lysias | May 6 2019 0:04 utc | 39

Here's what is known so far about the Sheremetyevo SSJ-100 disaster:

1. The plane was flying from Moscow to Murmansk. Shortly after take-off, at the height of just 2 km, it was hit by a lightning, which disabled fly-by-wire controls and main radio equipment. The fall-back radio equipment barely worked. The pilot decided to land immediately, i.e. with a full tank. The combination of manual controls, full tank, and possibly subpar pilot skills resulted in a very hard landing, rupturing the fuel tanks and igniting fuel, which can be seen in the following video:

2. The plane then proceded to slow down, making a left turn before it came to a halt. Video from the outside: Video from inside the passenger cabin:

3. The passengers then evacuated via the front doors:

4. Out of the total of 78 passengers and crew, 37 are alive (including 3 hospitalised with severe burns) and 41 are dead.

My personal (completely unqualified) opinion is that if the pilot has burned through the fuel before the landing, everyone would survive. Also, the anti-lightning protection system clearly didn't work as intended (as far as I understand, it was foreign-made — the SSJ-100 is 80% foreign components).

My condolences to the families of the victims.

Posted by: S | May 6 2019 0:35 utc | 40

@ lysias #41


Drug-resistant form of plague identified

In 2007 the "major antibiotics" totaled 8. Twelve years later, who knows? You can bet your last dollar some bio-war types are resistant to all of them.

In just-in-time inventories of Bean Counter America, I've seen the drug store run out of common drugs. Another sure bet - come the epidemic there will be enough on hand to treat maybe 5% of the population. Maybe, but probably not.

Posted by: Zachary Smith | May 6 2019 1:31 utc | 41

I've already fed the troll once, so no more. But regarding that submarine:

She was launched on 28 September 1943 and commissioned in early 1945.

The Brits were cranking out crap late in the war. That the submarine lasted as long as it did was probably a small miracle.

Posted by: Zachary Smith | May 6 2019 1:39 utc | 42

FromTheHague @2

You read the rest of that guy's site, right?

He's some kind of RightWingNut lamenting the decline and loss of White Australia and it's "Traditions".

Posted by: Just Me | May 6 2019 1:55 utc | 43

@ Just Me #46

I hadn't examined that link before seeing your post, so I went there and found this in the "Stalin" stuff.

The Allies, as we all know now, were fools to trust the Russians and reading this book we must see that we are fools to trust them now.

Amazingly dumb stuff! When I clicked on the "science" tab what I found was even worse. DDT ought to have never been banned. HIV doesn't cause AIDS. The Red Shift doesn't exist. Global Warming is a myth.

Posted by: Zachary Smith | May 6 2019 2:22 utc | 44

Trump's former lawyer heads to U.S. prison that offers matzo ball soup and full-time rabbi

NEW YORK (Reuters) - With a menu that includes matzo ball soup and gefilte fish, as well as a full-time rabbi and a chance at the occasional visit home, the U.S. prison where Donald Trump’s former personal lawyer will spend the next three years is unique in the federal system.

Interesting stuff. I wonder of the Methodists or Catholics or Muslims have their very own special prisons. For some reason I doubt they do.

Posted by: Zachary Smith | May 6 2019 2:26 utc | 45

This podcast interview with Lisa Pease on her new 500-page primary-sourced book, A Lie Too Big To Fail, on the RFK assassination, is fascinating, sobering, terrifying.

It should put to rest any notion that US elections have fundamentally mattered since 1963. Amazing the stuff the CIA pulled off in quick succession in the 60's. Also did not yet know the likely Israel connection in the RFK assassination and the convenient framing of Sirhan Sirhan as "the first Palestinian terrorist..." RFK was according to Pease going to demand that Israel register its lobbying actions, and other connections to the six-day war also noted by interviewers...

Posted by: WJ | May 6 2019 2:27 utc | 46

@13 james

Thanks for the CBC link!
Who didn't see that coming?
And that is why I travel with a crap phone...
Been toying with the idea of traveling with a Fisher-Price phone just to see what happens... but I fear it might end up with me being water-boarded...

Posted by: xLemming | May 6 2019 2:44 utc | 47

@49 WJ - thanks for that link.

Laurent Guyénot has some good pieces at Unz Review on this topic. I don't think I can post a link to Unz here, but this piece covers both JFK and Bobby: "Did Israel Kill the Kennedys?" It shouldn't be hard to find over there, the search is good.

The incentive for Israel to kill JFK was large. Bobby was running for the presidency in order to reopen the investigation. Apparently the Kennedy family has never forgotten. John F. Kennedy, Jr was grooming himself for that same presidential run. He was killed when his small plane crashed, mysteriously.

Posted by: Grieved | May 6 2019 3:43 utc | 48

US-China trade talks fail and USA sends carrier task force to Persian Gulf.

Couldn't see THAT comin'!/sarc

Sorry trumptards, dembots, and assorted dreamers, the cynics win again.

Also: the notion that USA needs Venezuela oil before cutting Iranian oil out of world supply is just misdirection.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | May 6 2019 3:55 utc | 49


Here's the URL contained in my link:

That's all there is to it. No corporate trackers (such as FB or IG adding crap onto the end). That's as simple as they get, unfortunately, but still long enough to prompt me to shorten it for Circe and those who apparently have major issues with links.

Posted by: KC | May 6 2019 4:18 utc | 50

Hmm...Ok, so this part is "extra" %3Cbr%20/%3E

But I cannot identify that as any suspicious tracking info....very interesting.

Posted by: KC | May 6 2019 4:19 utc | 51

@karlof #23

No fact here's a great follow-on to your ideas on Medicare for All.

Same deal as with Venezuela, Russia, etc.

Posted by: KC | May 6 2019 4:22 utc | 52

Sorry meant karlof @ #33....

Posted by: KC | May 6 2019 4:23 utc | 53

Anngirfan on Venezuela,

Posted by: denk | May 6 2019 4:28 utc | 54

@ Jackrabbit with the China trade link

So the financial markets are already tanking as expected.

Empire is cranking the FEAR dial to max and will take advantage of any opportunity to keep it there. Its interesting that it will only have "domestic" effect and be seen as just more bullying and brinksmanship by others.

I have come to see the inter-elite cat fight as a conscious culling of the rich in preparation for the "New Order" that will evolve from these coming events. Trump may actually have been ordered to out the neocons in the way this is playing out as part of the world wide deals made behind the scenes as set up to this public kabuki transition to the "New Order" that leaves global private finance some niche.

Interesting times indeed.

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 6 2019 4:31 utc | 55

Grieved @51,

Thanks for that reference to the laurent guyenot piece. It holds together very well as a unified account of the JFK and RFK murders and contains several bits of info about the JFK assassination I was not aware of. It would seem to me that if we accept that Israel was behind both assassinations it must have been with *at least* the foreknowledge of and likely cooperation with certain elements within the CIA. The extent of direct CIA involvement in the RFK murder is likely (and surprisingly for most) easier to demonstrate than in the earlier JFK killing; and that makes sense, given Johnson's complicity in the murder and five-years of state cover up. By 1968, many people in the CIA had almost as much to fear as Israel did at the prospect of RFK's reinvestigating his brother's murder, so that the RFK was likely a joint operation between the two groups. At least I find it hard to imagine that the CIA was not actively involved in the latter. I also--and here perhaps I differ from Guyénot--do not believe that *if* elements of the CIA were involved in either murder it was only or largely due to these same elements having ties to Israel. Perhaps this is so; but I think it is likely not. Good ole American evil existed before foreign Zionist evil and, while
the two have often been inextricably linked since the mid 20th-century, I do not think either finally reduces to the other. I say this not because I believe you think this, but only to try to articulate my one quibble with Guyenot's approach. Yet it is a very minor quibble and I thank you again for pointing me to her work.

Posted by: WJ | May 6 2019 5:10 utc | 56

@james 13
You can use the proxy (created when hooktube ceased to be useful) to avoid having to load Youtube pages by replacing in URLs with It also provides options to download the audio/video in various formats and sizes.

While it spares you the need to visit that infernal site and its trackers, be warned that the video data is still pulled directly from Google's video servers.

Posted by: Drive-by Commenting | May 6 2019 5:12 utc | 57

Last week Trump hinted that US and China were close to a deal. Did the trade talks fail because China wouldn't stop buying Iranian oil?

Bolton uses pre-planned military rotations to increase tensions with Iran while blaming Iran for amorphous threats.

More info about Bolton's escalation

Rotations of aircraft carrier “strike groups” and bomber fleets happen routinely. At present there are none in the US Central Command region, which encompasses the Middle East and Afghanistan. The Abraham Lincoln carrier strike group, left its base in Norfolk, Virginia, on 1 April and was due to sail to the Mediterranean for exercises and then on to the Gulf.

The US withdrew its B-1 bombers from the Middle East in March for maintenance and upgrades amid concerns the bomber force was over-stretched.

While such changes in global deployment are made regularly, it is rare for the announcement of such deployments to be made by a national security advisor rather than the Pentagon.

“A carrier into CentCom is not unusual and was likely routine and long planned,” said Ilan Goldenberg, a former state department and Pentagon official, now a senior fellow at the Centre for a New American Security in Washington. “The inflammatory language from Bolton is unusual[ly] provocative but my guess is just an opportunity to try to intimidate the Iranians. Nothing more.”

US Media suggesting that Iran has some role in Gaza violence and that's one of the reasons that a Carrier task force and bombers have been sent to the Middle East

"In response to a number of troubling and escalatory indications and warnings, the United States is deploying the USS Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group and a bomber task force to the U.S. Central Command region to send a clear and unmistakable message to the Iranian regime that any attack on United States interests or on those of our allies will be met with unrelenting force," Bolton said.
The statement also comes as new violence flares between Israel and the Palestinians in Gaza. The group Islamic Jihad, which has a foothold in Gaza, is seen as an Iranian proxy.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | May 6 2019 5:33 utc | 58

Comminist Party Directive, 1943 is day to day life today

Posted by: TJ | May 6 2019 7:03 utc | 59

TJ @ 65
Ahh yes thanks for the link !
So with hind-sight the communists were right !
If only they’d been listened to, how many lives would have been saved ? How many wars avoided, how much povity prevented and public money put to good use not distruction ?

Posted by: Mark 2 | May 6 2019 7:58 utc | 60

@ Grieved 50:
In the somewhat distant past I read a lengthy piece on the circumstances surrounding JFK jr's untimely death and based on the available evidence it seemed fishy. I'll see if I can locate it...

Posted by: Chevrus | May 6 2019 12:58 utc | 62

@61 "What are the Chinese after?" The Chinese government basically wants full employment for a large population.

I'm sure the waiver on Iranian oil imports is a bargaining chip. We should know soon.

Posted by: dh | May 6 2019 13:08 utc | 63

As Guaidó is recognized as 'interim President' by the U.S and by the EU... puke! Mina 159 on prev Venez. thread

Yes, Mina, Eurotrash, disgusting...

Venezuela is considered a ‘regular, respectable’ country and Maduro was genuinely, properly elected, and *all* European Heads of State or otherwise in power positions know this. Plus, the UN has taken a position against interference.

Schröder and Chirac, the core of the EU, opposed the Iraq invasion, would not join the Coalition of the Willing.

The details about Venez. statements are confused .. MSM news had EU countries either calling for dialog or respecting the Parliament (which is just a sneaky way of keeping mum and not taking sides) or supporting the interim president (circumventing the qu. whether Guaido should be considered a legit interim prez - that is all Venez biz after all!) or flat out supporting Guaido. (A few made no statements at all.)

Many who made public statements called on ‘authority,’ often not specified, to champion *New Free and Fair Elections.* BS, as those making the statements know, as the same result as before, prob. even stronger, pro-Maduro, would be returned.

The point is that not ONE European country defended Maduro as a legitimately elected President (as a person is irrelevant) -> the vassalisation of the EU seems complete.

Merkel recognizes Guaido, 4 Feb


Macron calls the election of Maduro illegitimate, 24 Jan

France 24

Italy blocked an overall EU position

Al Jazzeera

Map from FP which hugely overstates support for Guaido (it all depends how one interprets the words and then lodges into some labelled boxes..)

Foreign Policy

Now they (EU) will pretend it as all just kinda a stormy tea-cup misunderstanding thing, but they should be vilified for their position(s.)

Posted by: Noirette | May 6 2019 14:00 utc | 64

U.S. Dispatches Carrier Group to Middle East to Send ‘Clear and Unmistakeable’ Message to Iran

National Review

"Sink Me."

Posted by: Bemildred | May 6 2019 14:15 utc | 65

re: Chinese trade deal.

My suspicion is that Trump does not actually want a trade deal and prefers sanctions.

A large part of U.S. imports from China are from U.S. corporations with off-shore operations in China. Trump wants to force these operations to be relocated back to the U.S. in order to rebuild America's manufacturing base. It is only through a strong industrial base that he can 'Make America Great Again'. And given the U.S.'s industrial weakness, the result of 30-plus years of globalization, only by protecting U.S. industry with tariffs will he able to foster the redevelopment of the U.S. industrial base.

Wall Street and large U.S. corporations, who have profited by globalization, desperately want a deal. Thus Trump is forced to play along with the trade negotiations. At the same time he is making demands that he knows China cannot accept in order to scuttle the negotiations and then blame China for their failure.

We'll have to wait to see who wins, Trump or the bankers and corporations that are pushing globalization.

Posted by: dh-mtl | May 6 2019 14:24 utc | 66

@49 xLemming.. you're welcome... good idea with the crap phone..

@59 drive-by commenting.. thanks.. that's interesting.. the other part of it for me is i like reading as opposed to watching a screen..

Posted by: james | May 6 2019 14:50 utc | 67

Why I keep saying Burma (could be unimportant), the following is from Wikipedia (who calls it Myanmar) and I've heard the same from Burmese:
In 1989, the military government officially changed the English translations of many names dating back to Burma's colonial period or earlier, including that of the country itself: "Burma" became "Myanmar". The renaming remains a contested issue.[19] Many political and ethnic opposition groups and countries continue to use "Burma" because they do not recognise the legitimacy of the ruling military government or its authority to rename the country.
Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | May 5, 2019 6:47:46 PM | 32

Sounds rather like recent US meddling in Venezuela, doesn't it? Wikipedia is massively distorted and unreliable, especially for anything affected by US strategic interests. Their claim that the reversion of Myanmar names to their pre-colonial names is "contested" is pure lies. The people of all ethnic groups in Myanmar are virtually unanimous in accepting and using the name "Myanmar" and in rejecting the British colonial name "Burma". That includes all ethnic groups, and it includes both supporters and opponents of the former military government, including supporters and opponents of the new Aung San Suu Kyi government. The name "Burma" is an anglicization of the name of the dominant ethnic group the Bama, who have only been in the region at all since they migrated from the Himalayas just over a thousand years ago, whereas the name Myanmar has been in use for over 2000 years, and is documented in texts written over 2000 years ago - at that time the Bama had not yet even arrived in the region. The name "Myanmar" is therefore regarded by the people of Myanmar as inclusive of different ethnic groups, unlike the racially discriminating word "Burma".

Is it fair for foreigners to dictate what name people should use for their own country? What if Pompeo should decree that Venezuela should be called New California, would that be acceptable? The British colonial occupation and exploitation of Myanmar was brutal and unpopular. It would be appropriate to respect the sensitivities of the people who suffered under it.

Posted by: BM | May 6 2019 15:08 utc | 68

@ Grieved # 50

@ WJ # 58

In his book FINAL JUDGMENT, Michael Collins Piper outlined the role of Israel's Mossad in the JFK assassination as a consequence of JFK's determined efforts to stop Israel from building nuclear weapons.

Ron Unz (of Unz Review) credits Michael Collins Piper, who worked for Willis Carto's American Free Press, with writing a very credible expose of Mossad involvement. Piper died at age 54 in poverty and an alcoholic. His book got no attention because journalists feared a similar fate if they cited it

Collins Piper also died under suspicious circumstances

Here’s what Veterans Today wrote after his death:

“It is best to assume Piper was murdered.  He was a target, he was living in a hotel in Idaho, he had been living in a cabin but it was “accidentally” burned down.  This put him in a hotel where his body could be conveniently found.”

Posted by: chloe | May 6 2019 15:43 utc | 69

@79 dh-mtl

I think you're correct about how Trump is playing the silly game. But I don't think globalization can be reversed that easily. After 100 years of neoliberal effort, capital is now free to flit from one taxing and regulatory jurisdiction to another at will, and with global central banks enabling this, and all the corporations wanting it, it can only be turned off by the actions of individual countries in new arrangements.

Alasdair Macleod has a new article that I think bears on this somewhat. I haven't read it yet but here's the exec summary:

Behind the Huawei story, we must not forget there is a wider financial war being waged by America against China and Russia. Stories about China’s banks being short of dollars are incorrect: the shortage is of inward capital flows to support the US Government’s budget deficit. By attracting those global portfolio flows instead, China’s Belt and Road Initiative threatens US Government finances, so the financial war and associated disinformation can be expected to escalate. Hong Kong is likely to be in the firing line, due to its role in providing China with access to international finance.

The US position is essentially one of trying to attract as much capital as possible to bolster its own dollar, so everything must be seen within this context. China and its OBR are essentially creating a new market that has new trading agreements and repudiate the old globalization. The war I suspect is one of the old guard against the new guard, and since the new guard is fortified by a socialist economy - which in these days of the end of capitalism, we now see clearly, is the strongest form of economy - it will prove impossible for the western system to compete against fairly.

The key word of course is "fairly". The US is employing its entire financial arsenal in the rearguard action, in my view, and sooner or later this will simply be exhausted - but it won't bring the new guard down with it. The old guard will become a supplicant.

The article is at ZeroHedge I think but I prefer to give the GoldMoney link, which is the source. I'll drop it in the next comment, because I'm not sure if Typepad will pass it through unmoderated.

Posted by: Grieved | May 6 2019 15:49 utc | 70


Here's the link to the Macleod article:
Cyber wars and all that

Posted by: Grieved | May 6 2019 15:50 utc | 71

@74 Speaking of Huawei it looks like China is putting the squeeze on Canada. Last week it was canola oil (Krysta Freeland take note) now they are going for the pork.

"Canada is leaning on the United States to help settle a dispute with China, which has started to block imports of vital Canadian commodities amid a dispute over a detained Huawei executive.

In a sign of increasing frustration at what it sees as a lacklustre U.S. response, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's government is signaling it could withhold co-operation on major issues.

China has upped the pressure on Canada in recent weeks over the arrest of Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou, arrested last December on a U.S. warrant."

Posted by: dh | May 6 2019 16:07 utc | 72


Thanks for the link. I had already read the article.

I think that the 'financial war' is a separate track from the 'tariff war'.

As I see it, the U.S. needs to attract up to $1.5 trillion in capital to fund its federal deficit and the Fed balance sheet reduction this year. It has trouble doing this, and this is driving up interest rates.

Among the causes of the U.S.'s difficulty in attracting this amount of capital, which far exceeds its current account deficit, is, as stated in the article that you mentioned, competing demands from China's BRI. Thus the U.S. is desperate to shut down the BRI. Another problem is de-dolarization. As countries such as Russia, Iran, China, Turkey, etc. increase their operations outside of the dollar, they no longer need as many dollar reserves to support trade, thus reducing foreign demand for U.S. Treasury paper.

The U.S. cannot deal with higher interest rates because of the already existing debt levels. For example, a 1% increase in interest rates would add $200 billion to the deficit due to interest payments. In addition higher interest rates drive up the value of the dollar, making U.S. products less competitive, exasperating the trade deficit and weakening the U.S. economy, adding even more to the budget deficit.

At the end of the day, with the U.S. unable to attract the capital it needs to fund its budget deficits without raising interest rates, it will have only one solution, to print money (i.e. endless Q.E.). The Federal Reserve will resist this, as it will trash the value of the dollar, but in the end the Fed will have no choice.

When this happens the U.S.'s dollar's value as a reserve currency will be put into question and its ability to project power around the world will greatly diminished. At the same time, a substantially lower U.S. dollar will contribute to the re-industrialization of the U.S.

A weaker U.S. dollar is something that Trump is continuously asking for, but is against the interests of the 'Globalist' banks and corporations, again pitting Trump against the 'Globalists'

Posted by: dh-mtl | May 6 2019 16:56 utc | 73

@ uncle tungsten #30

uncle tungsten: “Sometimes I regard it the same as Mother Jones:- taken over by some shady Soros team.”

Don’t you know the “reporters” at Mother JonesBergWitz are among the most fearless investigative journalists out there?

Each one of them risking poverty and early death to speak truth to power, and carry on the courageous work of Michael Collins Piper

Posted by: chloe | May 6 2019 17:01 utc | 74

Sri Lanka terrorists attack.

1] Who [benefits] ?

2] What's the crime ?

3] When ?

4] Why ? [ motive ]

5] How ?

When analysing FF, people tend to waste too much time on the How ?
Cue the 911 debate.

In fact, either [1] or [4] should narrow the search for suspects.
Whereas [1] & [4] would prolly pin down the culprits.

In the case of Sri lanka terrorism, two suspects
have the motive AND they both reap the benefits.

Posted by: denk | May 6 2019 17:18 utc | 75

More Bezopost Bologna:

"Today’s Washington Post front page might be 1 of the most propagandistic I’ve ever seen. Above the fold is a feature story on how Iran is taking over Iraq’s Shias. Below the fold is a story about how Bernie Sanders socialist views were influenced by the evil soviets in the 1980s."

As I've written previously, please boycott as it's even worse than Zionistan. There are a great number of small businessfolk who'd enjoy your patronage.

Posted by: karlof1 | May 6 2019 17:52 utc | 76

@ dh-mtl with the response to the Grieved link about the finance war.

Thanks for the detail for folks about some aspects of the war.

I want to add that countries also currently voluntarily keep some of their nations "savings" in US Treasuries because of its Reserve Currency status. As the trade war intensifies, China will become the defacto Reserve Currency for that Axis and the countries aligning with and increasing trade with China will keep more of their nations "savings" in the yuan

And then when the West goes bankrupt there will already be infrastructure set up for all to come under the umbrella of China.....isn't it nice that the elite were so farsighted to arrange the conflict in this manner?

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 6 2019 18:55 utc | 77

One last word on China. Ramin Mazaheri has Part 6 of his series on the Cultural Revolution (CR) at the Saker.

How the socioeconomic gains of China’s Cultural Revolution fueled their 1980s boom (6/8)

This one details the education aspects of the CR. Mazaheri makes a good point: we often hear that the CR marginalized intellectuals, but in fact it prodigiously created them. Because of the manifold increase in schools and teachers at the peasant level, an entire new generation of literacy was created. It's a nice test: can we hold our concept of "intellectual" in the same place as our regard for the "peasant"?

Because the rural villagers were sent by their village efforts to the universities, and the students were sent to the country, they both came to appreciate the other side of things. This cross-seeding had enormous results, as very practical matters came to fill the curricula and displace the merely elitist. An industrial revolution also occurred in the country from this education of the countryside.

As Mazaheri recounts, the CR created:

2 times more food and 2 times more money for the average Chinese person, 14 times more horsepower (which equates to 140 times manpower), 50 times more industrial jobs, 30 times more schools and 10 times more teachers during the CR decade in rural areas.

We can only understand these massive, unprecedented gains in rural areas when we accept that the CR was only able to create it only via local empowerment of worker/citizens. After grasping that, it becomes easier to accept Han’s primary, and revolutionary, assertion: that China’s post-1980s boom rested on this explosion of economic and human capital in the rural areas, which represented 80% of the country in 1980.

Posted by: Grieved | May 6 2019 19:47 utc | 78

Isadora Duncan confronts the war-monger and pedophile (((Daniel Cohn-Bendit))) on the Parisien Metro

“Do you have any idea what became of all those little children that you molested?”

Posted by: anon | May 6 2019 23:14 utc | 79

@ karlof1 with the Washington Post rant

I just went there (WP) from ZH to skim the Bannon article and had trouble not throwing up.

I can only hope this is over soon and the only words we have to listen to from Bannon are those he makes in court when the war crime prosecution starts

I also went to the another link from the firehose of ZH to a MintPressNews article about pre planning of Venezuela that the State Dept had out and then link because I am losing comments

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 7 2019 1:30 utc | 80

Very important Alfred de Zayas Interview - UN Human Rights & International Law Expert Exposes US Coup In Venezuela (90 minutes)

Posted by: Krollchem | May 7 2019 2:02 utc | 81

@78 mh-mtl

Interesting discussion. Here's what I'm trying to puzzle out.

The equation according to Macleod is that any region in the world that starts attracting capital to itself - and thus away from the US and its dollar - thereby becomes a target for US weapons of instability, to discourage capital from that region.

This is what happened in the South-East Asian crisis of 1997, started by a run on the Thai currency. But this was also seen and analyzed by a chief strategist of China's security state, Qiao Liang, who is still around and still calling the plays as they happen. So China knows deep in its bones that by attracting capital to its BRI, it is also attracting the destabilizing weapons of the US.

So yes, there is the trade war and also the financial war. But it seems the trade war is a subset of the larger war of destruction - using all financial weapons, especially crashing the currencies of target countries, but also to include the heavier covert and even military options if required.

Of these, Trump appears to have his hand on the weapon of sanctions. But as Alasdair Cooke shows in this piece linked by karlof1 in a different thread, the institutions of the US that use this weapon are actually warning against its use for regime change.

The premier author of sanctions use, David Cohen, says:

“The logic of coercive sanctions does not hold, however, when the objective of sanctions is regime change. Put simply, because the cost of relinquishing power will always exceed the benefit of sanctions relief, a targeted state cannot conceivably accede to a demand for regime change"

In other words, Trump is using the one weapon they've left to his hand (and perhaps which they may take away from future presidents) by going full-throttle and trying to make a difference. But sanctions cannot achieve the aim of regime change - not in Venezuela or Iran, or anywhere else - because they were never designed for that purpose.

This somewhat implies that Trump either doesn't have control of those methods that ARE designed for regime change, or that lesser goals are actually in play, underneath the grandstanding. As we know, this is the eternal question in our discussions here.

But the equation I want to suggest is that the weapons available to Trump are ineffective, and the weapons that are effective, are not subject to Trump's control.


Meanwhile, China is a target for destabilizing, because it is now attracting too much investment capital, away from the US. This would actually serve as the overarching casus belli for the US, if we were trying to understand the automatic reaction of the US state against other countries.

Macleod illustrates that China is somewhat immune to all the financial weapons that the US can bring to bear against it - and this is what I think is most important here. Trump's tariffs, a weapon of the White House, have served to diminish global trade, to the detriment of the US.

The more effective weapons - and probably not launched by Trump but by the permanent state of the US - will not be effective against China, however, because China has a different economic system:

The Chinese have long been on a financial war footing, as shown by Qiao Liang’s analysis of how America needs global portfolio flows and what they are prepared to do to attract them. Western thinking that the Chinese and their Russian allies are vulnerable to American hegemony has been disproved time and again. Financial analysts consistently fail to understand the Chinese are not muppets.

China will not be provoked, and by standing firm, they are sure to protect Hong Kong and get on with diverting investment flows from a failing US economy into its Belt and Road Initiative. This will force a financial crisis on the Americans of their own making.

That was my emphasis, but I share it gladly :)

The summation is this. China is not at the same stage of capitalism as the US, which is at the end stage of capitalism/imperialism according to the Marxist view. China is nothing like close to that stage, and because socialism is such a core foundation of the economic system, may never reach such a stage.

If Macleod is correct, we get to watch the weapons at work on Hong Kong, and fail. If this long and rambling surmise is correct, we get to watch the waning of US capitalism continue, and China's economic rise continue, all pretty much unabated.

Posted by: Grieved | May 7 2019 3:45 utc | 82

MSNBC poll on Julian Assange backfires epically

Posted by: Never Mind the Bollocks | May 5, 2019 1:16:13 PM | 1

The poll is still on, 12k votes, 5% of weirdos think Assange is criminal, 95% deserves protection (mainstream opinion, huh?). It is symbolic, but many Americans really think about normal/mainstream and weird/outside, so there can be some real impact.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | May 7 2019 9:34 utc | 83

The premier author of sanctions use, David Cohen, says:

“The logic of coercive sanctions does not hold, however, when the objective of sanctions is regime change. Put simply, because the cost of relinquishing power will always exceed the benefit of sanctions relief, a targeted state cannot conceivably accede to a demand for regime change"
In other words, Trump is using the one weapon they've left to his hand (and perhaps which they may take away from future presidents) by going full-throttle and trying to make a difference. But sanctions cannot achieve the aim of regime change - not in Venezuela or Iran, or anywhere else - because they were never designed for that purpose.


There is also another logic from "Fractured Fairy Tales". Sir Walter in his travels encounters a sleeping princess in a crystal coffin, and knows that she can be awaken with a kiss. He quickly concludes "Awake, she is just another princess, asleep, she is worth a fortune!" and build a theme park around the place.

Continuing "futile sanctions" allow the business of imposing secondary sanctions and fines on all and sundry, or granting waivers, allowing to collect good coin whatever happens and keeping vassals on their toes.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | May 7 2019 9:47 utc | 84

@88 Piotr Berman

I like your fairy tale. Sir Donald?

Posted by: Grieved | May 7 2019 13:42 utc | 85

fairy tale. Sir Donald?

Posted by: Grieved | May 7, 2019 9:42:03 AM | 89

It was clearly about Walter Disney. However, the idea is general: there may be benefits from working on a problem even if it never gets solved. Sanctions make Washington more important, and lobby industry thrives on that. And when lobby industry thrives, legislative branch is happy too -- even if they HAVE to protest this or that. The beauty of the setup is that enemies of the sanctioned ones can never be sure if the sanctions will be applied with ancient savagery (as they would prefer) or not, and the same applies to the victims and those who want to trade with the victims. Imagine that Venezuela or Iran suddenly collapse -- how many people will loose their livelihood?

Posted by: Piotr Berman | May 7 2019 14:01 utc | 86

outbrick in Mongolia... I think that traditional housing in Mongolia is made of felt, and the modern one, of concrete, so rather few bricks there

bubonic fever -> steppe marmots (very similar to ground hogs/woodchucks in USA) have the bacterium, but I guess that it is like with flu, namely, from time to time microbes mutate and cause virulent diseases, while most of the time it is no worse than, say, Lyme disease (just take antibiotics).

However, huge proportion of USA-ians live very close to woodchucks (I definitely do), so if they would get infected, hm. Woodchucks do not approach humans, but if if they would start getting snotty and sneezy ... I guess the real problem is when mutated plague can be harbored by other rodents that approach humans surreptitiously to eat their food.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | May 7 2019 14:31 utc | 87

Below is a link from Raw Story that is proof to me that Trump does not have a shred of humanity in him and would challenge those that think he is doing humanity an 11 dimensional favor to square this circle

Outrage erupts after Trump pardons US soldier who tortured and killed Iraqi prisoner

Mentally ill does as mentally ill is. Trump is a very hurt man and he is projecting that hurt at the behest of the global elite to their ends to maintain empire.

Square the circle all you Trump fans. Explain to me how this is not a sick wink/wink to faith breathers that it is ok to kill non-believers.

Monotheism is a cancer in society because of its better than others core. It can't be marginalized too soon, IMO

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 7 2019 19:49 utc | 88

'Not only are we not enemies, we are not even competitors with China, as the Americans plainly are. Still Australians would be naïve to overlook the glaring fact that the Communist Party of China regards liberal democracy as it enemy, domestically and internationally. Being a liberal democracy, Australia needs to be on its guard against those who would “make enemies of us.” The time has passed when we could complacently assume that the arc of history bends towards liberal democracy. Internationally now it is under siege on several fronts

hahahahhahahaha !

YOur comment is still under moderation

Posted by: denk | May 9 2019 8:38 utc | 89

Has Trump had enough Bolton?

"The president’s dissatisfaction has crystallised around national security adviser John Bolton and what Mr Trump has groused is an interventionist stance at odds with his view that the United States should stay out of foreign quagmires.

Mr Trump has said in recent days that Mr Bolton wants to get him “into a war” – a comment he has made in jest in the past but that now belies his more serious concerns, one senior administration official said."

Posted by: dh | May 9 2019 15:31 utc | 90

@dh.. maybe trump could drop israel too, as israel wants him to get into war... israel-bolton - 2 peas from the same pod..

Posted by: james | May 9 2019 15:38 utc | 91

Best wait for the next tweet james.... "Fake news! John Bolton is doing a great job."

Posted by: dh | May 9 2019 15:46 utc | 92

dh @91

Careful. Published by Washington Post and relies on anonymous source.

This just fans the propaganda narrative of Trump as populist hero. If Trump really was a populist hero, he never would have brought people like Bolton into his administration.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | May 9 2019 16:02 utc | 93

@91 Oh I'm careful JR. Even after many years of reading dubious news reports a few brain cells remain. I will continue to post articles that look like they may be of interest...but thanks for the warning.

Posted by: dh | May 9 2019 16:08 utc | 94

Caitlin Johnstone breaks down the disinfo of Trump's disagreeing with Bolton and spanks Cenk Uygur in the process:

Back to that Washington Post article. Paragraph four reads as follows (emphasis mine):
“The administration’s policy is officially unchanged in the wake of a fizzled power play last week by U.S.-backed opposition leader Juan Guaidó. But U.S. officials have since been more cautious in their predictions of Maduro’s swift exit, while reassessing what one official described as the likelihood of a diplomatic ‘long haul.'”

Paragraph twelve reads as follows:

“Despite Trump’s grumbling that Bolton had gotten him out on a limb on Venezuela, Bolton’s job is safe, two senior administration officials said, and Trump has told his national security adviser to keep focusing on Venezuela.“

Posted by: Jackrabbit | May 9 2019 16:29 utc | 95



The 'good guys ' are under siege [sic]

The 5liars, socalled 'liberal democracies' have bombed, invaded hundreds of countries since ww2.
If they'r are the 'good guys', there aint no more assholes in this world !

We never treat China as enemy, but the chicoms regard all 'liberal democracies' as their foes

So its the chicoms who organise a pivot to confront the 5lairs ?
Its the Chinese who have been screaming 'white terror' all these years ?
Its Xi who initiated a trade war , scheming to clobber the 5liars economy ?

Why so many shameless psychopaths from the 5liars ?

Its getting impossible to award the greatest hoax of the century, the way 5liars keep surpassing themselves with each new day,or by the next tweet !


my post didnt show up there.

Posted by: denk | May 9 2019 16:35 utc | 96

Ex USSR general warns China...

'Belive the unitedsnakes at your own risk'

The red army stripped itself naked in front
of merkkan enforcers !

Posted by: denk | May 9 2019 17:55 utc | 97

There's a new "Let's bash China" book.
It's called China's Vision Of Victory. The author, Jonathan DT Ward, is a right-wing crank with Atlanticist leanings and connections to the Center for a New AmeriKKKan Security. He's also the founder of Atlas Organisation which focuses on the National Strategies of China and India. DT is code for Delirium Tremens - a result of sustained alcohol abuse. He also has a problem with mental myopia.

According to Jonathan, it's China's fault that greedy Neolib AmeriKKKans afflicted with Middleman-itis, exported as many American jobs as the Govt they own would allow. And now that AmeriKKKa can't keep up with the Chinese Industrial Powerhouse (created by greedy penny-pinching Western Neoliberal opportunists) China must be feared, loathed and punished. He also thinks it would be a pity if China's emerging Might, on all fronts, enables it to challenge AmeriKKKa's Moral Leadership!?

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | May 9 2019 19:55 utc | 98

Hoarsewhisperer 99

Im re-posting this , many missed it the first time.
Why ?
Because this really deserve a NObel piss prize.

*'Not only are we not enemies, we are not even competitors with China, as the Americans plainly are.

Still Australians would be naïve to overlook the glaring fact that the Communist Party of China regards liberal democracy as it enemy, domestically and internationally. Being a liberal democracy, Australia needs to be on its guard against those who would “make enemies of us.” The time has passed when we could complacently assume that the arc of history bends towards liberal democracy. Internationally now it is under siege on several fronts*

Lets see....

*We 'liberal democracies' are under siege *

The 'liberal democracies' have been bombing the world non stop since ww2.

Currently laYing siege to Russia, China, Iran,Venezuela.

*We never consider China an enemy, its them chicoms who regards every 'liberal democracies' their foe.*

So according to this shithead,

Its China who organise that pivot against the 5liars !

Its China who's laying siege to the 5liars !

Its China who's been crying 'white terror are coming' !

Its China who's launching a blitzkrieg to clobber
the 5liars economy !

Its China's been using Muslim jihadists to attack
the 5liars !

OMFgawd !
This must be the gold standard in...

But with the 5liars you never know,
Pompeo, Trump,or the Kiwis or that Brit Gay Williamson might blow this record by their next tweet !

IM not one who talk at people's back,
But my comment there is still 'under moderation' !


Posted by: denk | May 10 2019 4:41 utc | 99

5liars hypocrisy.

Exhibit A
That thing they call freedom of speech.

Thats fine as long as they've the field all to themselves, they control the narrative,

The moment someone threatens to burst that bubble of delusion, fuck free speech,
censorship kicks in.

This is how liberal democracy works.

Tip of an iceberg.

Posted by: denk | May 10 2019 17:11 utc | 100

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