Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
August 01, 2019

State Department Issues Manipulated Photo As B-Team Pushes Trump Towards War On Iran

An old propaganda trick is to paint one's enemies in darker colors than oneself.

Carl Zha @CarlZha - 1:25 UTC · Jul 31, 2019

Dark skinned Hong Kong cops vs white skinned Hong Kong protesters 👇🏼

I completely missed it, but someone pointed out pro-protesters Graphic designer DDED comics depicted “baddies” HK cops and white shirts in Yuen Long as dark skinned while Hong Kong protesters light skinned

bigger - bigger

Also note the blond/black hair colors used which of course contradict the physiognomic realities of the people in Hong Kong. One wonders which U.S. color-revolution workshop gave the protesters graphic designers such racist ideas. Such manipulative us-them graphics are despicable propaganda.

But it is even more malign when the U.S. State Department openly engages in such tactics and manipulates original photos to achieve a similar effect:

Secretary Pompeo @SecPompeo - 22:45 UTC · Jul 31, 2019

Recently, President @realDonaldTrump sanctioned Iran’s Supreme Leader, who enriched himself at the expense of the Iranian people. Today, the U.S. designated his chief apologist @JZarif. He’s just as complicit in the regime’s outlaw behavior as the rest of @khamenei_ir’s mafia.


A screenshot of the original tweet and attached graphic.

A reverse image search via finds that the original picture used in the above graphic was first published by the Seattle Times on June 10. It is the second one in the gallery above this piece. In that picture Iran's Foreign Minister Javad Zarif is listening to a journalist's question. It is the only picture in the series in which Zarif is not smiling:


The caption of the whole series is:

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif speaks during a press conference with his German counterpart Heiko Maas after their talks in Tehran, Iran, Monday, June 10, 2019. [...] (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)

The AP picture and Pompeo's tweet graphics cut for the same detail and size:

bigger - bigger

Same as above with the color saturation in the second picture set to zero:

bigger - bigger

It is obvious that the picture Pompeo distributed was artificially darkened to make Zarif look more "devilish". The background was manipulated to make it look like a rough unpainted wall. Additionally a vignette was added to put a dark halo around Zarif's head.

The given reasons for the sanction against Iran's foreign minister are laughable. A press statement by Pompeo says:

Today, the United States designated the Iranian regime’s Foreign Minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, who has acted on behalf of the Supreme Leader.

Iran’s Foreign Ministry is not merely the diplomatic arm of the Islamic Republic but also a means of advancing many of the Supreme Leader’s destabilizing policies. Foreign Minister Zarif and the Foreign Ministry he runs take their direction from the Supreme Leader and his office. Foreign Minister Zarif is a key enabler of Ayatollah Khamenei’s policies throughout the region and around the world. The designation of Javad Zarif today reflects this reality.

The U.S. Treasury put Zarif on its Specially Designated Nationals And Blocked Persons List:

Collectively, such individuals and companies are called "Specially Designated Nationals" or "SDNs." Their assets are blocked and U.S. persons are generally prohibited from dealing with them.

Despite the new sanctions Zarif is still on Twitter. This is likely to change soon as Twitter will now have to block him:

Javad Zarif @JZarif - 22:33 UTC · Jul 31, 2019

The US' reason for designating me is that I am Iran's "primary spokesperson around the world"
Is the truth really that painful?
It has no effect on me or my family, as I have no property or interests outside of Iran.
Thank you for considering me such a huge threat to your agenda.

Javad Zarif @JZarif - 1:23 UTC · Aug 1, 2019

We know that calling for dialog & peace is an existential threat to #B_Team.
And since reason for designating me is my words, would "US persons" need OFAC license to "engage" with me by reading my writings or listening to interviews?

cc: @stevenmnuchin1
cc: @SecPompeo
cc: @jack

The B-team members are John Bolton, the Saudi clown prince Bin Salman, UAE sheik Bin Zayed and "Bibi" Netanyahoo.

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani called the U.S. behavior "childish".

The stupid sanctions against Zarif were introduced to divert public attention from the fact that the Trump administration did not dare to eliminate sanction waivers for the delivery of nuclear fuel to Iran and for other civil nuclear activity. Iran would respond to the elimination of those waivers by increasing its own enrichment and fuel production:

Even as the White House unveiled the sanctions against Zarif, it quietly renewed waivers that will allow Iran to continue to receive international assistance for its civilian nuclear projects. Under those waivers, China and other countries are helping Iran transform Iran's nuclear facilities to ensure they cannot be used to produce weapons-grade uranium or plutonium.

Iran hawks had lobbied the Trump administration to sanction countries engaged in that work, while critics said it would encourage Iran to pursue a nuclear weapon. The administration's decision to sanction Zarif drew attention away from its waiver of the sanctions, and it could defuse some anger among hardliners who wanted the White House to take a tougher line.

The latest crazy idea the Trump people had was to ask the most hawkish senator to prepare a new Iran deal:

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) is working in close coordination with senior Trump administration officials who focus on Middle East policy to find an alternative to the Obama administration’s Iran deal, four people with knowledge of the efforts tell The Daily Beast. Part of that effort includes fielding ideas from outside actors, including foreign officials, two of those sources said.

There is no guessing needed who those "foreign officials" are:

It is unclear how far along the team is in crafting a proposal, but Graham did travel to Israel earlier this month to meet with officials about the situation with Iran.

In an interview with The Daily Beast on Wednesday, Graham said he had spoken to Trump about his ideas for a new nuclear deal several times and that the president was contemplating them. The senator said the U.S. should ask the Iranian regime to agree to a so-called 123 Agreement—a key, legally binding commitment that requires countries doing nuclear deals with the U.S. to sign on to nonproliferation standards. The U.S. has entered into those agreements with more than 40 countries.

Graham does not really want to Iran to sign on to the 123 standard. It is a trick he wants to use to pull Europe to the U.S. side:

“I told the president: Put the 123 on the table with the Iranians. Make them say ‘no,’” Graham told The Daily Beast. “I think the Iranians will say no. And I think that will force the Europeans’ hands.”

The U.S. should also require Iran to sign on to the “gold standard,” a pledge not to enrich and reprocess nuclear fuel, Graham said. Enrichment and reprocessing are key steps on the way to a nuclear weapon.

Enrichment and reprocessing are key steps to make ones own nuclear fuel. The U.S. several times sanctioned Iran's purchase of nuclear fuel. The country would be crazy to forever depend on others to provide it.

Graham's idea is stupid. The Europeans would not fall for his cheap trick. The JCPOA nuclear agreement with Iran, which the Europeans co-signed, expressly recognize Iran's inalienable right to enrich nuclear fuel under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). Only after the Obama administration conceded that Iran has that right was Iran willing to negotiate that nuclear deal. That position will not change.

Trump seems to really want a deal with Iran. But he has surrounded himself with childish people, Bolton, Pompeo and now even Graham, who all do not want a deal. These folks want war. They want to push Trump into a corner where the only way out for him is to wage war on Iran.

As Trump lacks knowledge of the issue and has no idea of how to make a deal with Iran, their chance of getting him there is quite high.

Posted by b on August 1, 2019 at 18:59 UTC | Permalink

Comments about racism, prejudices and white privileges >_<

Posted by: Arioch | Aug 1 2019 19:04 utc | 1

Zarif should stop focusing on this bs and bait by US/Pompeo on Twitter. He should by any means get the facts out. Period.

Posted by: Zanon | Aug 1 2019 19:17 utc | 2

Here is an article that explains the dangers of further sanctions against Iran and how this has been a concern for decades:

Washington is alienating its potential partners in any military coalition that will be required if a war with Iran takes place.

Posted by: Sally Snyder | Aug 1 2019 19:23 utc | 3

(Hi b, the link for hkcolor1.jpg has an extra character at the end)

Those sure are some ugly graphics. Perhaps they have to scrape the bottom of the barrel to find artists willing to help Uncle Sam interfere in the affairs of other nation states. One can only hope.

Posted by: Trailer Trash | Aug 1 2019 19:23 utc | 4

Trump will not agree to anything unless he can sell it as a 'win' ... the US demands to date are so unrealistic as to be laughable.

Posted by: chet380 | Aug 1 2019 19:28 utc | 5

thanks b.. good insights on the pictures which will escape a casual look by most..

as for the usa's approach on iran - it is really bonkers.. they have been trying to describe iran as a terrorist state and isolate them for some time now.. add to that pomopeo and state depts constant mis characterizations which are meant to cultivate a negative view on iran when in fact - the negativity is coming straight out of the usa - 24/7... unfortunately some of this repetitiveness works.. someone on a previous thread referred to is as 'echo'.. propaganda works with an ignorant public.. the usa is being fed this stupidity 24/7.. i am not sure how they avoid it.. the picture alternation on zarif is just one small part of it... these folks are really malicious!

ditto @1 ariochs comment...

Posted by: james | Aug 1 2019 19:33 utc | 6

Heard Zarif being interviewed at length on NPR a week or so ago (to their credit). He sounded quite reasonable, despite the generally hostile questioning by the reporter, so much so that I wondered if some people might have their minds changed if they happened to be listening. Not surprised to hear that the dishonest US govt considers such a situation unacceptable, and decides to shut him down with their thuggery.

Posted by: Dave | Aug 1 2019 19:43 utc | 7

The reason that graphic is the way it is is very simple: it was made for American, not Hongkonger, consumption.

Every culture has its own language to express class struggle relations.

In the case of, e.g., Brazil, the rhetorical weapon is the "corrupts vs. good people". The corrupts, obviously, are the socialists/poor working classes; the "good people" (clearly taken from the Roman Republic boni, a term the anti-Julius Caesar senators used in correspondence letters to designate themselves) are the heirs of the old colonial oligarchy and the members of the traditional middle class (in the Third World, the middle class is more akin to the upper middle class in the First World countries, since they don't have a blue collar origin).

In the USA, the rhetoric is, undoubtedly, race. Americans separate themselves between races since the times of the puritans in the original Thirteen Colonies. And the reason is clear: the narrative that legitimized the USA was that it was a classless society, inhabited by free-willing people in search of religious freedom. But the reality was that religion don't feed you body and don't develop societies. There was no King in the Thirteen Colonies, so they had to invent an all-encompassing narrative that could legitimize class division (exploitation).

The race card in that case was perfect, since it fit the immediate observation of the small/medium farmer/planter: human breed horses, pigs and plants in general in order to select certain specialized characteristics in order to better satisfy their needs. So, to justify the poor pilgrims being servants to rich pilgrims in New England, they used differences in physical traits -- inevitable, given the discrepancy in wealth -- to hide class divisions. Hence the infamous White Trash was born: the toothless, full of worms, barefoot, inbred and demented swamp-dweller Anglo-Saxon.

The fact that the Natural Selection theory was born at the end of the 19th Century only gave more fuel to this race card tradition in the USA -- Darwin himself endorsed Eugenics (precisely under the farmer point of view logic) and it immediately became a very popular pseudo-scientific theory both in the USA, Europe and also Japan. It was used as a legitimizating narrative to justify slavery in the future Confederate States of America, in the occasion of the Civil War of 1861.

Posted by: vk | Aug 1 2019 19:55 utc | 8


Trump just said that he will impose 10 % new tarrifs on additional 300 billion of chinese goods.

I just mention that to those who tend to underestimate US hostility and aggressivness.

Posted by: Passer by | Aug 1 2019 19:56 utc | 9

Could the yellow "hair" things be yellow hardhats? Chinese culture has its own ancient focus/appreciation/biased appraisal/preference of white or pale skin color which is almost identical to the European original concept of "whiteness" and which has nothing at all to do with race and everything to do with people who are well off and not having to do any manual labor being able to choose not to have any hint of a tan. This has even spread to Africa and Africans with "whitening" skin products (not entirely unreasonable considering how quickly dark-skinned people lose a bit of color if they live far enough north). For the same reasons umbrellas (hmm coincidence?) were historically used against the sun both in Europe and Asia: to not tan.

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Aug 1 2019 20:08 utc | 10

@vk - Very insightful input, but I am not sure your original premise is correct, at least with respect to the HK. You say that the HK graphics were meant for American consumption, but I don't agree. The text is all in a foreign language, Chinese, which would mean that if indeed it was intended for American consumption, it would be aimed at a small minority who 1) read Chinese and 2) have a stake (perceived or otherwise) in the affair. I suppose there's a third option that it was a subtle psyop of sorts designed to get Americans to THINK it's intended for HK'ers so I won't write off your theory out of hand.

You're obviously 100% right about the photo in the Zarif tweet by Pimpeo - and I think b did a good job of making that point too without going into the level of detail that you did. That one was obviously intended for Western/American viewers.

Posted by: KC | Aug 1 2019 20:08 utc | 11

The yellow "hair" in the graphic is yellow helmets. The skin colour of the protestors is depicted as lighter though.

Posted by: Another Dude | Aug 1 2019 20:09 utc | 12

I think SRB is correct - those yellow heads are meant to depict some sort of hat, not hair color. The second "bigger" link is broken, so I didn't examine that one closely.

Posted by: KC | Aug 1 2019 20:10 utc | 13


New thread suggestion for b - the coming economic crisis in light of Trump's latest trade war escalation. Who loses the most. And the odds of Trump reelection in such conditions.

Posted by: Passer by | Aug 1 2019 20:22 utc | 14

b: The Europeans would not fall for his [Lindsey Graham] cheap trick.

The Europeans have already essentially fallen in line with USA. Did you miss Iran's urgent appeal for Europeans to trade with Iran?

b: Trump seems to really want a deal with Iran.

Except he doesn't. He put the "B-team" in place and he could replace them at any time. Trump's two-faced undiplomatic Iran policy (impose crippling sanctions then complain that Iran is not a "normal country" and is unwilling to engage in peace talks as they suffer) is consistent with his/his Aministration's duplicitous treatment of other adversaries: North Korea, Venezuela, and Russia.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Aug 1 2019 20:23 utc | 15

Zarif should stop focusing on this bs and bait by US/Pompeo..

It's called a plot device. Zarif can no more ignore Porklet Pompeo than could Hamlet ignore the ghost of his father or the uncle who killed him.

I'll have grounds

More relative than this—the play's the thing

Wherein I'll catch the conscience of the King.

Hamlet Act 2, scene 2, 603–605

Posted by: C I eh? | Aug 1 2019 20:23 utc | 16

Most interesting. The photo comparisons effectively demonstrate how low these people will stoop in their degeneracy.

On the other hand, Magnier has a new piece out about the Iranians taking the brit-flagged tanker. He says the IRGC warned the UK/US ships in the area to back off, as they were taking the ship. Meanwhile, the missile complexes in Iran radar-lock on the UK/US ships. They are locked and loaded. The US/UK ships stand down as the IRGC boards and takes the tanker, in what must have been a hugely humiliating defeat to the US/UK, and one that was quickly seen worldwide. Any way you cut it, the US/UK look like wankers with their pants around their ankles, which seems like a good thing for the world.

The stand down suggests that someone, somewhere does not want an actual shooting war. They want floating Potemkin Village-style ships in the Gulf to look tough, but when push comes to shove, they back down. Maybe the B-team is not so much in charge as they appear to be.

Posted by: casey | Aug 1 2019 20:28 utc | 17

@jackrabbit - or did the "b-team" put Trump in place, so to speak?

Posted by: KC | Aug 1 2019 20:33 utc | 18

@17 casey... i linked to the magneir post yesterday on the open thread, but here it is again for those who missed it..

Posted by: james | Aug 1 2019 20:54 utc | 19

Mmmmmm, good thing our POTUS isn't enriching himself at the public's expense..

Posted by: ben | Aug 1 2019 20:55 utc | 20

U.S. persons are generally prohibited from dealing with them. Um what? What does that mean?

Posted by: goldhoarder | Aug 1 2019 21:13 utc | 21

Lately, MBZ and the UAE have been looking interested in getting traded off the “B Team”.

(Things are much nicer here on the b team.) ^_^

Posted by: David G | Aug 1 2019 21:24 utc | 22

Haha David G yeah this b team is much better :D

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Aug 1 2019 21:25 utc | 23

Awesome job by the propagandist designer, but he/she really missed an opportunity to add little fangs to Zarif's mouth. Oh well, maybe next time.

Posted by: S | Aug 1 2019 21:26 utc | 24

casey, james: Magnier

Hasn't it been reported that the British ship had turned off it's navigation tracking? IIRC, Iran seized the ship for this violation.

Magnier doesn't mention Iran's reason for seizure, making it seem as though it is entirely a "tit for tat" (Magnier's words) action - and just as illegal as UK's seizure of the Iranian ship.

Magnire also claims that UK govt now refuses a mutual release because they are butt-hurt about their ships being targeted for attack. Magnier excuses UK's intransigence as "saving face" when it's much more likely to simply be following orders (from USA).

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Aug 1 2019 21:31 utc | 25

Reply to Casey #17

I copied a line from your comment

Magnier has a new piece out about the Iranians taking the brit-flagged tanker
and did a search on Google. Magnier is not a search term. Hence no hit

did a search on duckduckgo and they had lots of links to Magnier, but it looks like Casey's article not linked yet

did a search on Edge and they had a sorta OK search result. Better than Google, worse than duckduckgo

Posted by: Don Utter | Aug 1 2019 21:45 utc | 26

@26 don... check out the link @19.. pays to read the posts..

jr - yes - as i recall the excuse was they turned off the the navigation tracking.. i think it is a tit for tat either way and i think uk is stooge for usa.. in fact, on the international warmongering stage, it is hard to see much of any separation between usa-uk... and of course this will continue so expect more, especially into the fall..

Posted by: james | Aug 1 2019 21:48 utc | 27

SRB @ 10, Another Dude @ 12, KC @ 13:

Those are indeed yellow helmets.

Go to Carl Zha's original tweet and right-click the mouse on either of the two pictures. The resulting blow-up clearly shows the female figure or figures having long black hair. Note also the yellow helmets have little pointy dots sticking out of the top. (One supposes that's to help make room inside for pointy craniums.)

Or you can click on these links:

Posted by: Jen | Aug 1 2019 22:06 utc | 28

Anglo-Dutch Shell dropped British-flag!

LONDON (Reuters) - Royal Dutch Shell is not taking any British-flagged tankers through the Strait of Hormuz amid heightened tensions with Iran in the vital chokepoint for oil shipments.

MarketWatch , and FT, reported the British-Dutch oil giant quarterly profit 42% dropped , $3.03 billion, down from $5.23 billion a year earlier.


Posted by: arata | Aug 1 2019 22:06 utc | 29

"One wonders which U.S. color-revolution workshop gave the protesters graphic designers such racist ideas. Such manipulative us-them graphics are despicable propaganda.

But it is even more malign when the U.S. State Department openly engages in such tactics and manipulates original photos to achieve a similar effect"-B

Racism is baked into the Anglo-Zionist empire cake. From "god's chosen'" to manifest destiny, to white man's burden all the way down to full spectrum dominance, this is the unbroken line of racial supremacist thought.

Is it really any wonder that the US and Israel were the staunchest and last supports of apartheid South Africa?

Posted by: O | Aug 1 2019 22:23 utc | 30

While Pat Lang asure us "Trump has no policy in the Middle East", I wonder who could be the misterious client of Black Cube mentioned in this article who was so interested in discrediting the JCPOA signed by the Obama administration in 2015....

The Weinstein case is not the only case in which the reputation of Black Cube has been seriously compromised. Another one of them is the espionage, uncovered in May, on former assistants of former President Barack Obama. The company alleged that its client was private and that it was a "commercial order" away from political interests, while other sources related its intervention with an interest in discrediting the Nuclear Pact signed by this Administration with Iran in 2015.

Posted by: Sasha | Aug 1 2019 22:26 utc | 31

Analysis like this helps bump up defense stocks and keeps the recruiting offices busy. It also helps keep the web page counts up.

This is a big nothing burger, just like all the other foreign policy crises of the week/month. Remember Fire and Fury, anyone?

In democracies, major military action requires sufficient support to tolerate the inevitable body bags and defeats. That support isn't there and I don't think Trump has it in him to be uniter-in-Chief. There's no event like Pearl Harbor or 9/11 to galvanize public support. Even if there was, the support may well not be there- the government and its official reports have scant credibility left.

If the support is not there, 2 options. First, no war. Second, do the war and do whatever it takes to squash dissent.

I view Trump as a guy more likely to write a bad check and joke about it later than a guy inclined to turn the U.S. into a police state to serve Bibi and Bolton. Every diplomatic corner has an escape hatch. I could be wrong, but my bet is for no war.

FWIW, I'm far more concerned about the overall debt levels, the hallowing out of US industry, and the overall lack of political talent and vision on the national US political scene than I am about what some people who have foamed about war with Iran for years are up to lately.

Different warmongers/President/target country, but it should be noted that some chicken hawks tried to pin Obama into a corner with Syria and the chemical weapons red line. Well....

Posted by: OutOfThinAir | Aug 1 2019 22:33 utc | 32

Hehe Jen "pointy craniums" XD Hard hats sometimes have such crests (one or three) in the middle (it might be old-fashioned?).

Out of curiosity I tried translating the text despite not speaking Chinese (neither Mandarin, Cantonese, Hokkien or anything else).

I think this is right:


which becomes:
Hong Kong
Are you in?
A state of war?

There is certain to be much better ways to do this but I used to find the hanzi/hon-jih logograms using their radicals combination thing (it is intended for Japanese kanji but they are the same) and then (set on auto-detect and translating to English —I know just about enough Cyrillic to do that) for the translation.

But it takes only one small error:


to make it:
Hong Kong
The apricot has entered
A state of war?


Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Aug 1 2019 22:58 utc | 33

OutOfThinAir @32,

Another bourgeois desk jockey trying to sell us neoliberal narratives of bourgeois indispensability? Go back to 4chan.

Posted by: Jonathan | Aug 1 2019 23:22 utc | 34

There will be nothing but more and more pressure applied to Iran until a spark ignites the flame somewhere somehow. This is what Israel wants and this is what Israel will get at the expense of many Iranian lives and other untermenchen lives.

Forget Trump. He wouldn't be able to find Iran on a map. He's simply the spokesman for Bibi and the greater Israel project. They will get their war and Trumps job will be trying to assuage Americans that it was necessary for their own security.
How big and ugly this gets will be determined by Russia and China's backbone. Nothing would surprise me as to what extent the US/Israel/British will go to exert their will.
This may get very ugly and may just explode way past the borders of Iran

Posted by: pestercorn | Aug 1 2019 23:27 utc | 35

Came across this article that throws a new twist to world politics and empire as it stands. It poses Britain as the main adversary of the US and how it has manipulated the US government ever since WWII.

And furthermore, not only the war in-the-making with Iran Is a British plan that has been in the books since the 90’s but the whole neocon movement is one of their making. I tend to believe that. British have always been thinkers and manipulators.

I also tend to believe some of the authors other assertions. I know for a fact that during the reign of the Shah, it was the British and its agents within Iranian government that pulled the strings, not the US.

Asadollah Alam, The Shah’s most trusted adviser was a Freemason and a British agent as was the deputy chief of SAVAK, Hossein Fardoust, also The Shah’s closest friend, who did his training in London with the MI6. This is the same man that finally betrayed the Shah.

Alam was the chief adviser and policy maker, as well as chief of staff. Of course, he took his marching orders from elsewhere.

Trumps refusal to attack Iran was a blow to British policy prompting Kim Darroch to spew the vitriol about Trump. Bolton and others, I believe are pushing for war because that is what the Brits have planned. We should see a replacement for this evil man soon as Trump is on to these characters. Wonder if a purge is on the way in the White House.

But, this creates a dilemma for the true empire. And this will place Trump in jeopardy. He is going against the free trade that only benefits City of London and its agents in Wall Street. Also, trying to open relations with Russia and China.

I wonder if Trump will pull back completely if Britain gets into a conflict with Iran which is highly likely.

Posted by: Uncle Jon | Aug 1 2019 23:58 utc | 36

The United States' problem is that it must negotiate a 'resolution' to the Iran Crisis that it has created by unilaterally violating, and in so doing wrecking, the negotiated resolution already negotiated and implemented.

The United States' conundrum is that it cannot resolve the problem it created except by backing itself out from its creation of its problem, to do which it will have to acknowledge it erred and that its error created the problem, and acknowledge its responsibility, and liability, for damages that its erring and its error have caused to Iran. To do this will, of course, constitute tacit admission of the clear, obvious and patent stupidity of its initial error, unilaterally backing out from a contract, and its compounding of its error by then attempting to coercively force the parties it wronged by its error to sublimate its error by pretending the error not an error in order to 'renegotiate' a resolution as if no agreement had een previously negotiated, and agreed, and signed by all parties to form a contract between all parties, binding all parties, including the United States.

A contract is a contract. Unilateral renege of a contract is unilateral renege of a contract. Ther is no law anywhere, under any system, that provides any support of any kind for the United States' action of renege. Thus, the United States has no option. No 'way out'.

Nor does Iran, really, since the validity of contract is the bed-rock corner-stone to all negotiating and all agreeing, without which there would be, will be, nowt but anarchy. Trump's renege is a petulant child's anarchy. The West's (Europe's) adherence to its admired buddy Trump's Antifa-Stance style anarchy is juvenile gang admiration and support for stupid self-assertion. Iran's acceding, on the other hand, would be acquiescence to petulant-children and their petulant-child demands, which would be dynamiting the already crumbled and rotten foundation under the current world’s civilization.

What if Iran should do this? Where is there an agreement, or contract, anywhere between nations that would not be crumbled by the precedent that any contract may be reduced to nullity by petulant demand for dissolution?

There is not much left of international law in any case after the deliberate destroying actions by first, the Allies, at Nuremberg, trying 'war crimes' that were not war crimes when committed, then Israel's trying of Eichmann for 'war crimes' that were not war crimes when committed in a jurisdiction that could not have had jurisdiction, because it did not exist, and the United States' justification for its Vietnam war aggression by theory of the case incident providing the legal precedent requisite for the case incident. A case setting precedent for a contract to not be a contract if a succeeding elected successor dislikes it would pretty much blow the last remnant shards of the bottom out of the already shredded international law basket.

I think we can count on Iran to not do that, when they have, for an alternative, to let Trump, Pompeo and their child-gods fellow fools, of Europe and of Israel and Israel’s Western-World Ruling Lobbies, twist in the wind, unable to undo, except by back-down, what they have brazened themselves into.

Posted by: Evangelista | Aug 2 2019 0:35 utc | 37

The chances of an Iran war breaking out are still relatively low. I think the drone shoot done in June is the closest things will ever get to an actual shooting conflict. Still highly tense don't get me wrong but it's no worse than it was two months ago. Still of the view there will be no war with Iran certainly not between now and November 2020 though despite the best efforts of John Bolton, Mike Pompeo, Bibi and bin Salmon. This isn't like Iraq 2003.

Posted by: Jonathan Gillispie | Aug 2 2019 0:49 utc | 38

Posted by: Uncle Jon | Aug 1 2019 23:58 utc | 36

I read this guy (Matthew Ehret) several times and i think he is living in his own universe.

"Think what you may of Donald Trump. The fact is, that he has not started any wars which a Jeb or Hillary were happy to launch. He has reversed a regime change program active since 9/11. He has fought to put America into a cooperative position with Russia."

It is only because the US no longer has the money to wage wars, not because it does not want to, but because it can't. It will bankrupt itself if it starts another one. But this does not mean that the US is not waging hybrid wars against the world, with the aim of ruling the world and disrupting international cooperation. The aggression, hostitlty and the hatred against the multipolar world is still there, but wars nowadays are waged in another way, not only with tanks and bombers.

"He has reversed a regime change program active since 9/11"

"America now has a real opportunity to rediscover its true anti-imperial nature by working with Russia, China, India and other nations under the new cooperative framework of space exploration and the Belt and Road Initiative."

Is this guy in lala land?

"He has fought to put America into a cooperative position with Russia."

The US implemented far more sanctions against Russia during Trump than during Obama. Including capturing a Consulate, selling weapons to Ukraine, far bigger pressure (compared to Obama times) against Nord Stream 2, exiting the INF and the coming exit from START, and having military presence on the Russian borders at an all time high for the last 30 years. There is now almost no day without some NATO aircraft poking Russia's borders.

The US is in escalating war against the multipolar world during Trump, see the increase in US destabilisation activities in Latin America, the attacks on Turkey, the attacks on Iran, and the escalating trade war against China.

Trump is a military puppet (see their budgets go up when almost anything else gets cut) and an israeli puppet.

Far more aggressive than Obama. I now have the feeling that democrat presidents are a bit better for the world after all, since they are not anymore white guys trying to prove that they have bigger D than anyone else.

A democratic president, while hostile to Russia, would be less hostile in Latin America, the Middle East and China. Which is good for multipolarity. They are forced to spend money more on domestic needs, which is always bad for the military/intelligence complex, as it takes some of their money.

For all the talk about HRC's aggressivness, she was not ready to increase the military budget, and against leaving the INF and the JCPOA.

Trump is bad president for multipolarity, he is fighting very hard to sustain the US empire.

Believe it or not, i say that as someone who initially prefered Trump. But i changed my opinion. Better late than never, as they say.

Posted by: Passer by | Aug 2 2019 0:52 utc | 39

Opps, that's just incoming -

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Thursday he was considering a quarantine or blockade of Venezuela, as the United States steps up pressure on President Nicolas Maduro to relinquish power.

Posted by: Passer by | Aug 2 2019 1:26 utc | 40

As Trump lacks knowledge of the issue and has no idea of how to make a deal with Iran, there chance of getting him there is quite high.

Sorry, can't agree with that conclusion. President Teflon's 'knowledge' waxes and wanes depending on which way the wind is blowing and whom he's chosen to make a fool of today. In 2016 he loved Wikileaks. This year he doesn't know who Wikileaks is but he does Know that they're fake news. What Trump doesn't know about manipulating people and situations, and hijacking a narrative, isn't worth knowing.

I'll stick with my speculation that he's going to keep pressuring and provoking Iran until Bibi or his replacement begs him to stop. I've read unconfirmed reports that Iran has threatened to obliterate "Israel" if Iran is attacked by anyone. Imo, Trump wants Iran to make it crystal clear that Iran is firmly committed to such a policy.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Aug 2 2019 1:50 utc | 41

@ Passer by with the response to Uncle Jon about his myopia about Trump....thanks

What I am seeing is a cross between the Wag the Dog strategy and Ground Hog Day repetition.

Trump is a TV personality with a bigger ego than Ronnie Raygun, but they both were/are actors to a script. I continue to roll my eyes at folks, including b, that continue to cast Trump as a well meaning sort fighting off the perfidy of associates.

Late empire is executing a tightening circle of wagons around the core of global private finance and many at the upper levels will be dross in the process. What the elite are continually fighting for is their place at the table of reconciliation at the end of WWIII that we are engaged in. Will private finance shrink down to a size that the rest of the world will allow to exist?

How much more suffering will occur before the end of WWIII?

Posted by: psychohistorian | Aug 2 2019 1:50 utc | 42

"What I am seeing is a cross between the Wag the Dog strategy and Ground Hog Day repetition.

Trump is a TV personality with a bigger ego than Ronnie Raygun, but they both were/are actors to a script. I continue to roll my eyes at folks, including b, that continue to cast Trump as a well meaning sort fighting off the perfidy of associates."

Posted by: psychohistorian | Aug 2 2019 1:50 utc | 42

On this I totally agree with you.

Posted by: O | Aug 2 2019 1:56 utc | 43

Zarif has been very effective. Therefore he had to be shut out.

Posted by: paul | Aug 2 2019 2:02 utc | 44

As Trump lacks knowledge of the issue and has no idea of how to make a deal with Iran, there chance of getting him there is quite high.

Trumps lacks knowledge in everything, he is Zaphod Beeblebrox without the second head. Anyone who has ever heard his interviews with Howard Stern over the years know the guy is about as deep as a puddle on a warm summer day. He is led by his reflection on tv. His masters know how to use this.

Posted by: O | Aug 2 2019 2:12 utc | 45

"The latest crazy idea the Trump people had was to ask the most hawkish senator to prepare a new Iran deal:..Lindsey Graham"

The same Lindsey Graham who wanted nothing to do with Trump back in 2016

The ZOG of the USA is telling Graham what to do, and "Trump's people" are just following orders as well.

Posted by: O | Aug 2 2019 2:31 utc | 46

It is difficult to distinguish who is driving the anti-Iran circus between the following three: 1) Israel, 2) UK and 3) US. I would guess that Israel is, as always, di capo dei tutti capi, UK dreams of colonial restoration, whilst US is just a dumb muscle the other two are taking along. This does assume that we can distinguish the interests of US Zionists from the interest of the US nation. The US population is rather severely brainwashed, so whether the zombies are providing the muscle because they do not understand their true interest or because they see Israel's control of the ME region as in their own interest is almost irrelevant. It is up to the very brave US individuals such as Mr Philip Giraldi to make this distinction.

What is really fascinating to me is how totally ruthless the Zionists are and how US people in general are incapable of a clear thought. I always compare US with a nag, poor old horse used and abused, whipped and spurred whilst almost (financially) collapsed. But the rider/parasite does not even pause. Zero compassion, zero consideration, the Zionists are just like the type of bacteria which kill their host instead of maintaining the parasitic state forever. Agreement-incapable, without any remaining trace of reputation, like an old worn-out madam whore, with teeth falling out (SpaceShuttle, F35, 737Max, staged and real mass shootings and numerous other), having used, abused and upset all the whores who work for it (aka allies), US just stumbles into new conflicts before resolving any past ones. As the shameless Asians would say: what a shameless country (that is, worst of the worst). The pimp/whore is now preparing for the totally depressing talent show called The US Presidential Election, a national parade of worthless characters promising Free-Shit-Heaven to dumbos to vote, whilst desperately endearing themselves to the deep men and women behind the curtain with puppet strings in their hands.

Posted by: Kiza | Aug 2 2019 3:45 utc | 47

"the totally depressing talent show called The US Presidential Election, a national parade of worthless characters promising Free-Shit-Heaven to dumbos to vote, whilst desperately endearing themselves to the deep men and women behind the curtain with puppet strings in their hands."


Posted by: Anacharsis | Aug 2 2019 4:56 utc | 48

I'm really quite surprised that b hasn't issued an update or correction on the allegation/theory that the yellow helmets were meant to be "blonde hair"....

Posted by: KC | Aug 2 2019 5:28 utc | 49


I still have to contemplate your theory but my instincts already had me placing the english on a list of only one nation and nationality I'm prejudice against by nature.

Posted by: nJH | Aug 2 2019 5:37 utc | 50

Fourteen  Cartoonists  set an exhibition of  cartoons of Queen Of Pirates, with 35 cartoons, in Tehran ( see some of them on above link).


Posted by: arata | Aug 2 2019 6:53 utc | 51

When arguments fail, implied ad hominem insults begin. Thus, the racism. Remember Willy Horton and OJ Simpson, their photos were darkened for sinister effect.

Posted by: El Cid | Aug 2 2019 7:48 utc | 52

@33 Sunny Runny Burger

With the significant help of a Chinese native speaker, I think the Chinese statement in the picture can be translated as: "Has Hong Kong entered war status?".

Posted by: dynkyd | Aug 2 2019 7:49 utc | 53

Thank you dynkyd that makes sense, if one takes that and compares it one can imagine where the automated translation went a little wrong if the the "you" in that translation refers to the "Hong Kong" at the start rather than anyone reading it in Hong Kong. I should have tried putting it all on a single line.

At least no apricots went to war, the apricot error was my first attempt and I was scratching my head wondering if it was some kind of slang or code :D

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Aug 2 2019 8:47 utc | 54

Who owns the Persian Gulf now?

It seems sentiment is changing in the west. Foreign Policy Magazine says " Iran Owns the Persian Gulf Now".

" It has long been an accepted fact within the U.S. foreign-policy community that if any country blocked or interfered with shipping in the Strait of Hormuz, the United States and its allies would use the awesome force at their disposal to defend freedom of navigation. Yet like so much else in this era, long-held truths and ironclad laws have turned out to be elaborate fictions."

Posted by: arata | Aug 2 2019 9:09 utc | 55

What war would destroy Iran totally? It would be difficult. Nukes?

Posted by: j | Aug 2 2019 11:35 utc | 56


I believe the move was too bold of a gamble for Iran. The piece also portrays it as a religiously made decision by the Ayatollah. It seems they think of themselves as already at war.

Posted by: j | Aug 2 2019 11:46 utc | 57

@ arata | Aug 2 2019 9:09 utc | 55

"Who owns the Persian Gulf now?"

“The fruits of the earth belong to all, and the earth itself to none.” --Rousseau, Discourse on the Origin and Basis of Inequality Among Men.

Posted by: Anacharsis | Aug 2 2019 11:48 utc | 58

Yes, the picture clearly depicts yellow helmets -- not blond hair.

However, the color of the skin of the picture bellow clearly depicts the "yellow helmets" as north Asians (Chinese, Korean and Japanese), while the picture above depicts the "white shirts" as southern Asians (i.e. brown Asians).

There's a lot of prejudice in the North against brown skin -- specifically, against the "southern Asians" (SE Asians, Indonesians, Filipinos, Indians etc. etc.). Asians don't have prejudice against black people per se -- on the contrary, they think of them as rather exotic (specially in Japan). True "racism" in Asia is between white and brown Asians.

The Westernized elite from Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and other "westernized" parts of Asia have a huge inferiority complex in realtion to the Western whites (Europeans, Canadians and Americans) -- specially in relation to the nordic fenotype (blond, white, blue eyes). It is important -- and morele boosting -- for them to be depicted, even in an illusory way, as similar, or analogous to the western white.

Posted by: vk | Aug 2 2019 12:00 utc | 59

The reason that graphic is the way it is is very simple: it was made for American, not Hongkonger, consumption.

Every culture has its own language to express class struggle relations. <-- vk

I would add that there seem to be a clear "graphic connotation" of blond hairs in the region. Obviously, countries of East Asia have plenty of blond people, but very few natural blonds. For young men, bleaching hair is a sign of non-conformism and even of membership in youth gangs. For this reason, in many schools (including ALL in Thailand), changing hair color is forbidden. So a crowd of blond young men is a crowd of hooligans. That said, I have no idea what is the message in the poster.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Aug 2 2019 12:17 utc | 60

@ b "Trump seems to really want a deal with Iran. But he has surrounded himself with childish people"

No, he surrounded himself with Zionists.

I believe there was a warning that Trump could be compromised (blackmailed). What was never said was that it was buy folks within the US (and NOT by Russians).

As to what he "wants," who the hell knows? I wonder whether he even knows. His entire life is built upon corpses of folks he's "fired." "How to succeed by failing." When things don't turn out well he then only needs to point to others.

Inside Trump's brain: "I will do 'A';" 'A' fails, in which case it's- "Squirrel!"

Posted by: Seer | Aug 2 2019 12:28 utc | 61

To add to my above post:

The reason why Trump is go good at firing people is because he's so crappy at hiring them.

He goes for the most obnoxious folks he can get as they are assured of speaking his name more (and in suck-up tones).

Posted by: Seer | Aug 2 2019 12:31 utc | 62

Interesting article re. Zarif:

You would think the U.S. could somehow afford some staff who are not idiots.

Posted by: jared | Aug 2 2019 12:45 utc | 63

More and more 'childish' actions from the White House on Iran. It seems that it has exhausted the 'maximum pressure' options. The neocon team is now resorting to the classical 'demonization' strategy to justify a military action on Iran.
In addition the neocons are encouraging Trump to exert more economical 'maximum pressure' on China. They hope that the possible negative impact of these sanctions on the US economy will oblige Trump to jump into war to hide the fall of the economy. Trump will do anything to be re-elected, even going to war after a huge campaign of demonization of 'aggressive' Iran. It is a gamble but he got no other choice now. Unless miraculously China and Iran bow to his demand or unless he fires the whole of his team at the risk of losing the financial support of the Jewish lobby, he is engaged too far to go back...

Posted by: virgile | Aug 2 2019 13:16 utc | 64

The senate never ratified The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, so Trump was dumb to "pull out" rather than simply state the US was never part of it and that Obama was acting outside his authority and thus should have been impeached.

That would have allowed him to shift focus to Obama and his refusal to submit the agreement for ratification instead of what has happened.

Posted by: MK | Aug 2 2019 13:37 utc | 65

In my opinion the Iranians did the right thing in detaining the UK registered ship it shows an intent not to be messed around with, something the UK/US are masters at, in this case, some call it tit for tat but in International law it is called a reprisal...
Belligerent reprisals are usually committed in times of war however a reprisal is a limited and deliberate violation of international law to punish another sovereign state that has already broken them.
Reprisals refer to acts which are illegal if taken alone, but become legal when adopted by one state in retaliation for the commission of an earlier illegal act by another state.
Before reprisals could be legally undertaken, a number of conditions had to be satisfied:
• There had to be a previous act by the other party that violated international law.
• Reprisals had to be preceded by an unsatisfied demand for reparation or compliance with the violated international law.
• There must be proportionality between the offence and reprisal.
Can I use a sporting metaphor, supposing a Boxer upon starting a contest immediately kicks his opponent in the stomach then stands on his neck, his opponent will be dead in 15 seconds, his opponent is allowed to strike out with his feet in order to stop the illegal assault, even though kicking is also illegal. It is called common sense.

Posted by: Harry Law | Aug 2 2019 14:20 utc | 66

Trump seems to really want a deal with Iran. But he has surrounded himself with childish people, Bolton, Pompeo and now even Graham, who all do not want a deal.

b: Do you really believe that Trump has any say in US foreign policy? Surrounded himself? Why do we persist in thinking that Trump is a real president who makes policy? It's a ludicrous idea. Why do you think he conducts 'foreign policy' from his Twitter account? It's meaningless, pointless fake news and fake policy, a toy the barbarians let him play with. He makes Ronald Reagan look like a fucking scholar!

And of course, Trump's utterances sometimes actually coincide with the reality of US actions, but who cares, it makes not a whit of difference! The US is a racist, barbarian nation, build with blood and slavery! Trump is a capitalist and hews to the interests of the capitalist class and like the rest of his class, a sexist, racist pig of a human being but does anyone object in the Western world's media and political classes? Of course not! He speaks what they all secretly think.

Posted by: Barovsky | Aug 2 2019 14:35 utc | 67

US Navy’s most expensive ship ever can’t get ammo to deck, can’t launch new F-35 fighters

Compounding the snafu is the fact that the Ford has not yet been subjected to ‘shock trials.’ This testing involves detonating underwater explosives near a fully-crewed ship to simulate the forces and stresses of combat. If the trials were to find the Gerald R. Ford lacking, the Kennedy too would be scuppered, and the Navy would be left with two combat-unready ships and a $24 billion bill.
Despite the ambiguity surrounding the Ford-class carriers’ combat effectiveness and cost, one party in the story is likely pleased: manufacturer Huntington Ingalls Industries, a shipbuilding spinoff of defense giant Northrop Grumman. In addition to the Ford and Kennedy, the US Navy has awarded the firm a block contract for the construction of two additional Ford-class carriers. Before the contract was awarded, more than 100 lawmakers wrote a letter to then-Defense Secretary Jim Mattis pushing for the two-carrier deal.

During the years preceding WWII (1938-1945), FDR temporarily installed socialism in the USA and developed a "dual industry" in the country. The purpose of the dual industry is to develop a war economy which can be converted back to a "peacetime industry" when the war is over. The concept of dual industry is not revolutionary by itself and certainly wasn't an American invention (the Soviets also applied this concept, hence the myth it spent 18% of its GDP in the military). However, the Americans were, by far, the ones who benefitted the most from it in the aftermath of WWII.

This post-war "boom" made the subsequent POTUS to transform this vice into virtue. The difference was that FDR did what he did by necessity, while his successors did it because they thought that was the way to go for perpetuity. A successful tactic can become a disaster when transformed into a strategy.

Posted by: vk | Aug 2 2019 15:19 utc | 68

Harry Law @66: Reprisal

Great point about legitimacy of reprisals but AFAIK Iran's "reprisal" was further legitimized by British-flagged vessels turning off their identification systems.

See my comment @25 for more.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Aug 2 2019 15:44 utc | 69

Vk wrote:

The Westernized elite from Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and other "westernized" parts of Asia have a huge inferiority complex in realtion to the Western whites (Europeans, Canadians and Americans) -- specially in relation to the nordic fenotype (blond, white, blue eyes).

What do you base this upon? What makes you think it is an inferiority complex rather than something else like perhaps friendship or getting along well, or in the case of the US a large degree of painful diplomacy and foreign relations necessity more than anything else except perhaps for outright patience?

Additionally I'm not so sure any occasional similarity of appearance can hide the chasms of cultural differences in the west, at least not all of them; any such would probably be blown away at first significant personal contact despite all the rigamarole of protocol and such, and hey the US presidents puke during dinner anyway... :D

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Aug 2 2019 15:58 utc | 70

clarification @69

British-flagged or owned

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Aug 2 2019 16:55 utc | 71

Such beautiful music ...

Why did the UK commander of HM Montrose refrain from firing on the IRGC? Who in Iran gave orders to capture the “Stena Impero”?

Tiny little Iranian speedboat to British warship:

“I order you not to intervene in my operation. The tanker is under my control. Do not put your life in danger”.

Backed up by hundreds of missiles on the shores of the Straits of Hormuz ready to fire, the British ship backed down.

This event of the Iranians is world-shattering - they have stood their ground, and the paper tigers of the US-UK got blown over in a gust of wind, their fragility bared to the world.

Posted by: BM | Aug 2 2019 17:26 utc | 72

@vk #8
I'm sorry, but your comment is full of flat-out errors.
Darwin didn't publish his book until 1858. The United States had slaves literally from the beginning; the Founding Fathers were negotiating terms acceptable to the Southern slave-holding colonies before the Constitution was ratified.
The cotton gin was invented in 1794, and its use expanded - along with slavery - throughput the first half of the 1800s.
Yes, Darwin was definitely racist in the modern sense - but difficult to say if he was unusually so for a white male in that period.
As for classless: that's nonsense. The early American colonies were riddled with indentured servants and outright prisoners. Something like half of all colonists fell into these 2 categories - so it isn't like it was a small number that was invisible.

Posted by: c1ue | Aug 2 2019 17:34 utc | 73

@Sunny Runny Burger #10
Its pretty simple: what rich people do, is considered fashionable while what poor people are, isn't.
When rich people were pasty and gouty because they ate lots of meat and drank wine, that was fashionable in contrast to the average person who worked in the fields and was thin and tanned.
Now that poor and middle class people are pasty and overweight, it is fashionable to be tanned and thin because it is extra work and leisure to be that way.

Posted by: c1ue | Aug 2 2019 17:37 utc | 74

@ Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Aug 2 2019 15:58 utc | 70

There is ample evidence of preference of white males to Asian males in Northern Asia (China, South Korea and Japan).

There's also a cultural, deep-ingrained factor to that: white Europeans have lighter skin than the average North Asian, and white skin is a status symbol because that meant he/she didn't work (therefore didn't catch any sun) for millenia.

But the main factor is recent white European dominance of the world led by the British Empire. Even the Japanese imperialist elite admitted they were inferior to the European, as we can attest documentally (see DRISCOLL, Mark, Absolute Erotic, Absolute Grotesque, Duke, 2010).

As for modern inferiority complex, it's been sometime since I kinda researched this object. There are a lot of primary sources you can find on the internet (to my knowledge, there are no academic research on this).

Posted by: vk | Aug 2 2019 17:41 utc | 75

@Kiza #47
It would be a mistake to think that the "US" position towards Iran is unified.
The Bolton et al crowd are one branch; Israel is another; Saudi Arabia is a 3rd. They share a general antipathy towards Iran but have different specific goals.
Even in the US, the Bolton et al crowd is just one branch. There are economic interests that don't want the US to rapproach with Iran such as the Sinclairs. The Sinclairs are an LA billionaire couple who made the jump into the 1st tier by buying up tens of thousands of San Joaquin valley land around Bakersfield and planting pistachios after the Iran revolution and subsequent US embargo. They control 60% (as of 2 years ago) of the $800+ million a year pistachio market in the US - a market which Iran used to dominate around the world. Incidentally, this couple also created Pom and Fiji water...

Posted by: c1ue | Aug 2 2019 17:45 utc | 76

The Outlaw US Empire has again lied to its own people and the world--why should anyone be surprised at the perpetuation of a behavior well over 75 years old? After decades of slumber, the world has awoken to discover where the monster tormenting it all that time lives--North America. How and for what ends the Outlaw US Empire operates was there to discover for those knowing where to look--the book series published as Foreign Relations of the United States, which are available here through 1993. Other collections exist, like the one here. I prefer university libraries where the most recently published volumes are usually available. (Note that they are in the Reference Section and usually cannot be checked-out.) For example, the discussion about Palestine in 1948 cane be found mostly within this volume. George Kennan's writings are a must, and fortunately some of the most important were marshalled together here by Dr. Chossudovsky, with this observation by Kennan being perhaps his most important:

"We have about 50% of the world's wealth but only 6.3% of its population. This disparity is particularly great as between ourselves and the peoples of Asia. In this situation, we cannot fail to be the object of envy and resentment. Our real task in the coming period is to devise a pattern of relationships which will permit us to maintain this position of disparity without positive detriment to our national security. To do so, we will have to dispense with all sentimentality and day-dreaming; and our attention will have to be concentrated everywhere on our immediate national objectives. We need not deceive ourselves that we can afford today the luxury of altruism and world-benefaction." (The entirety of this extremely important policy planning memo can be found here and in its original form with all footnotes here large pdf )

The memo remained Classified until 1974 for what ought to be obvious reasons, yet very few scholars have remarked upon it--I first encountered it in Robinson's Promoting Polyarchy: Globalization, US Intervention, and Hegemony, (1996) that I bought in 1998. It's this sort of information that's either withheld, goes unnoticed, or is deliberately ignored that renders the USA's body politic illiterate when it comes to understanding its condition and the Why of the Outlaw US Empire's policy--Clearly, Full Spectrum Dominance is the logical outcome of Kennan's memo. I'm willing to wager the national debt that no D-Party candidate knows of Kennan's memo or its significance and connection to current policy. Indeed, it's highly likely that analysts within the Russian and Chinese governments know more about the Outlaw US Empire than any US academic, and only a fortunate few get to learn what they know.

So, lets spread the wealth of knowledge we gain from interacting here and elsewhere.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 2 2019 18:21 utc | 77

@ Posted by: c1ue | Aug 2 2019 17:34 utc | 73

I didn't say slavery only happened in America because Darwin published his book.

What I'm saying is that his Origin of Species was immediately interpreted as a (scientific) vindication for the defenders of slavery. Eugenics was very popular right out of the bat; it was far from being Hitler's invention (Hitler, by the way, was a late phenomenon of both the eugenics and the anti-semitic fevers that took over Europe at the end of the 19th Century).

Of course slavery wasn't born because of a book.

Posted by: vk | Aug 2 2019 18:27 utc | 78

Posted by: vk | Aug 2 2019 18:27 utc | 78

I think you're misinterpreting the role of 'Origin of the Species' in justifying not only slavery but capitalism itself. The Victorian propagandists distorted Darwin's theory concerning the 'survival of the fittest' to justify capitalist exploitation, the strongest will survive and so forth.

And Darwin's grandfather Josiah Wedgewood, was one of the founders of the anti-slavery movement.

Posted by: Barovsky | Aug 2 2019 19:48 utc | 79

@vk #78
You said in your previous post: "It was used as a legitimizating narrative to justify slavery in the future Confederate States of America, in the occasion of the Civil War of 1861."
I understand what you're trying to say. It is still very unclear how slavery needs "legitimizing" when it was an accepted practice since the literal founding of the United States.
Agreed on eugenics - it is policy masquerading as science, and sucks at both.

Posted by: c1ue | Aug 2 2019 20:25 utc | 80

@vk #75
White skin is primarily sought after by Asian females. The men don't give a crap about themselves being white.
I think it is simplistic to assign caucasian "attractiveness" to just skin color, however.
Among other potential factors:
1) Blockbuster movies - pretty much always a central white guy. I've told this joke (?) before: it seems many asians have a similar problem distinguishing white people from each other, only for them, the output is a centered towards some movie star as opposed to some strange looking other.
2) Asian men - not all but definitely many - are chauvinistic pigs. Europeans and Americans, in contrast, are thoroughly broken in.
3) Societal factors. In Japan, women are considered "old maids" at 27. Foreigners don't care. There are also factors bridged with 1) above concerning women working, raising children, wanting to move out, etc.

Posted by: c1ue | Aug 2 2019 20:34 utc | 81

@Passer by and pschohistorian

Perhaps I should have put a disclaimer about my feelings about Trump. But he is the lesser evil that we are stuck with at the moment and I can tell you I prefer this idiot a thousand time to Killary for we would certainly be at war in two maybe three fronts.

Trump has too many defects to name here, but having these defects does not make me blind to appreciate some of the good he has done and number on the list is keeping us out of a new war and a catastrophic one at that with far.

If and when he gets rid of the Boltonator, then maybe you can start seeing my point of view. Not so myopic after all.

Posted by: Uncle Jon | Aug 2 2019 20:37 utc | 82

@karlof1 #77
I don't really see the United States' policies as being secret - only not advertised.
The function of the World Bank and IMF, for example, is very transparent and obvious.
Ditto US maneuvers on international monetary policy ranging from going off the Bretton Woods gold standard/closing the gold window to the Plaza Accords and more. Nor have US military actions for sovereign or multinational gain, anything new. Smedley Butler wrote about it in the 1930s from his experiences from the late 1800s to post World War I, and the US has been "peacekeeping" since 1801 and the First Barbary War.

Posted by: c1ue | Aug 2 2019 20:40 utc | 83

Does anyone know what public opinion on starting a war with Iran inside of Israel? I know Netanyahu barely won against a more reasonable candidate who was talking deescalation. I guess my question is: are the Israeli people ready for the rain of Hezbollah rockets if US/Israel starts bombing Iran? Is fighting a full on war with Iran/Hezbollah/Syria/PMU for the next decade a popular concept in Israel? Seems unlikely considering the life style that many Israeli's live, such as chilling at beaches, shopping, and going to clubs and stuff.

Posted by: Jason | Aug 3 2019 0:11 utc | 84

This is not meant to be harsh or unkind or personal, it is meant to be something to think about and consider. I could be misunderstanding what people write.

People can keep their opinions (whether or not I agree), this is about method.

Maybe it will only be a reminder (to me a well) because I got it wrong. I'm fine with that.

We all generalize in order to cut corners and save time but it becomes outright racist stereotypes about both Asians and others when one assumes intents and attributes to billions of people —in essence as if they were all one. I've seen this so many times within the European left (and a few times on the right) but if I were to assume it represented everyone on the left in Europe I would be making precisely the same mistake, so I don't or at least try not to. As a further example vk could possibly be Brazilian but again it would be exactly the same error to think he or she whether correct or incorrect represents everyone in Brazil (whether or not vk is Brazilian which could easily not be the case and which is essentially unprovable on the internet), so I don't.

"These billions go into this little neat box and this billion goes into that little neat box" and so on some might think to themselves as they "make sense" of why the thoughts they've already had must obviously be correct, and any experiences or impressions they might have got from some (correctly or incorrectly, first impressions without self-criticism or otherwise) are applied to all or some "general majority".

If anyone does this they end up with a cartoon world, a badly drawn and meaningless one where all the little mistakes anyone is sure to make and aggregate (no matter what opinion) can easily distort into giants.

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Aug 3 2019 5:14 utc | 85

@ Uncle Jon 36

I read that Matthew Ehret article with great interest.

Also a previous one that talked about the British influence on Bretton Woods, after the untimely death of FDR.

Ehret's essays are is absolutely true that the British elite and their very substantial and long-running deep state has been manipulating the United States for a long time...

FDR clashed with Churchill vehemently on the basics of the postwar order that the major powers were architecting...he was an anti-imperialist and aligned more closely with Stalin in terms of a socialist direction...

In Africa, in the Middle East, throughout the Arab world, as well as in China, and the whole Far East, freedom means the orderly but scheduled abolition of the colonial system. I can assure you that this is true. I can assure you that the rule of people by other people is not freedom and not what we must fight to preserve...

But that benign and benevolent US world vision took a dramatic U turn after FDR's passing, and the elevation of Truman, who was forced onto FDR by the establishment.

FDR railed repeatedly against the outsize influence the British had on the US diplomacy...

You know, any number of times the men in the State Department have tried to conceal messages to me, delay them, hold them up somehow, just because some of those career diplomats over there aren’t in accord with what they know I think. They should be working for Winston. As a matter of fact, a lot of the time, they are [working for Churchill].

Mostly this British 'soft power' came by way of the Rhodes scholarships of carefully chosen elite American students...who then went on to prominent positions in the US establishment...

Rhodes himself had openly propagated that his main goal was to bring America back into the British Empire...

The Chicago Tribune in 1951 ran a tremendous series of articles 'documenting the cancerous penetration of hundreds of Oxford Trained Rhodes Scholars who had taken over American foreign policy and were directing America into a third world war.'

The malign influence of the British in American politics is probably stronger than ever. For instance the Russiagate hoax and the Skripal hoax [the two possibly closely connected].

A lot has been written about Israel's malign influence, and rightly so, but the subversive role of 'perfidious Albion' has hardly been touched upon...

There is much material here to explore for investigators and historians.

Posted by: flankerbandit | Aug 3 2019 12:57 utc | 86

@ MK 65

The senate never ratified The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action...

That's meaningless...The US voted for UNSC Resolution 2231 which passed unanimously and is thus INTERNATIONAL LAW.

We recall that UNSC Resolutions are LEGALLY BINDING on all UN member states.

So internal ratification doesn't mean diddly.

Posted by: flankerbandit | Aug 3 2019 13:08 utc | 87

Just read the other day that kid gloves Epstein had asked for a delay in his prosecution of one year. That would put his trial to begin around the beginning of August 2020. Just as the election goes into overdrive. How is it that he was brought in from the cold and out of the blue offered himself to federal prosecution in NY if not to put Trump’s feet to the fire? The Anglo-Zionist cabal seek to force his hand on Iran. It’s either re-election or kiddie infamy for the Donald

Posted by: LJ Hekaya | Aug 3 2019 18:11 utc | 88

@ flankerbandit 86

“A lot has been written about Israel's malign influence, and rightly so, but the subversive role of 'perfidious Albion' has hardly been touched upon...”

They are one in the same. The Queen and Evelyn Rothschild are best friends. And way too many Jewish connection and symbolism in the royal family to ignore.

As for your comment in 87, Us, especially the current administration have total contempt for the UN and don’t fewer obliged to follow any treaties as evident by the exodus from many of its agencies. See below.

Posted by: Uncle Jon | Aug 3 2019 19:20 utc | 89

Sorry for the typos above.

Posted by: Uncle Jon | Aug 3 2019 19:21 utc | 90

And here is some further proof as to the machinations of the British, the true hegemon, explained by the French foreign minister Roland Duma. Truly eye-opening.

The British are the brain who get their way through politics and planning with subtlety while the US is the loud mouth bully who realize their policies through the tip of the spear and you can see them coming a mile away.

Perhaps the esteemed commenters that took an issue with my post earlier pay attention.

Posted by: Uncle Jon | Aug 3 2019 20:05 utc | 91

@ karlof1 | Aug 2 2019 18:21 utc | 77

Indeed, it's highly likely that analysts within the Russian and Chinese governments know more about the Outlaw US Empire than any US academic, and only a fortunate few get to learn what they know.

So, lets spread the wealth of knowledge we gain from interacting here and elsewhere.

"…the book series published as Foreign Relations of the United States, …". These were extensively quoted in Paul Preston's magnificent biography of Franco, A Biography ISBN 978-0-00-686210-9 Fontana Press.

I could not agree more with your statements, particularly concerning original documents and contemporary documentary correspondence by the prime actors of history. All too much current history has been spun for one agenda or another and renders the mirror highly distorted - better no history at all.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Aug 3 2019 20:26 utc | 92

Uncle Jon @91

Great link. Important personal account offered by the ex-French FM.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Aug 3 2019 20:51 utc | 93

Reposting as it seem relavent here as well

The establishment press is shocked ... SHOCKED! to find that there's a new Cold War

But have no fear, because Alastair Crooke is on the case. Breathlessly exclaiming that "something is up", he quotes ft columnist Luce:

The speed with which US political leaders of all stripes have united behind the idea of a ‘new cold war’ is something that takes my breath away. Eighteen months ago the phrase was dismissed as fringe scaremongering. Today it is consensus.

Crooke illustrates this Cold War mentality with a description of Jefferies remarks at the recent Aspen Conference:
“Hammering Russia” (he insisted repeatedly), will continue until President Putin understands there is no military solution in Syria (he said with heightened verbal emphasis). Russia falsely assumes that Assad has ‘won’ war: “He hasn’t”, Jeffrey said. And the US is committed to demonstrating this fundamental ‘truth’.

Therefore, the US plans to ‘up the pressure’; will escalate the cost to Russia, until a political transition is in place, with a new Syria emerging as a “normal nation”. The US will ‘leverage’ the costs on Russia across the board: Through military pressure – ensuring a lack of military progress in Idlib; through Israelis operating freely across Syria’s airspace; through ‘US partners’ (i.e. the Kurds) consolidating in NE Syria; through economic costs (“our success” in stopping reconstruction aid to Syria); through extensive US sanctions on Syria (integrated with those on Iran) – “these sanctions are succeeding”; and thirdly, by diplomatic pressure: i.e. “hammering Russia” in the UN.

And then summarizes:

... the picture seems to be one in which US bellicosity is somehow consolidating as an élite consensus ...

But this is where Crooke (predictably) goes off the rails as he returns to his elites are divided mantra, claiming that despite their disparate aims, various elite groupings find a belligerent stand to be useful to achieve their goals. He further goes on to explain that peace-loving Trump may be susceptible to this malevolent elite consensus. Oh my!

I've often taken issue with the notion that US elites are divided. IMO those who put forth this theory confuse and conflate the many issues involved. For one thing, elite power varies greatly by subject area, for example: neocons and MIC have vastly greater power in military-related foreign policy than financial, healthcare or agricultural 'elites'. "Divided elites" pretends that there a change in policy is more possible than it is.

Crooke also continues to credit Trump as anti-war and to push the propaganda meme that he's an independent actor that is pressured or influenced to do things that he doesn't want to. As I've written so many times before, it's inconceivable that the Deep State allows someone that is not a well-vetted team player to assume the office of President. Trump is not a dictator or a puppet - he's a team player who will receive yuuge gratuities for his teamwork after he leaves office - just like the Presidents that came before him.

Perhaps in another 18 months, Crooke will again breathlessly express new revelations that will, as with the "new Cold War", bring his thinking more into line with reality. Or maybe he should just read MoA more frequently.

The Citadels of America’s Elites: Fractured and At Odds with Each Other

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Aug 4 2019 5:23 utc | 94


To see the folly of Alastair Crooke's viewpoint, consider that his latest - which I reviewed @60 - is something of a rehash of what he wrote in September 2016: New Cold War Spins Out of Control

Both warn of elites that seek to overcome the President's peaceful intent. But we now acknowledge that Obama's intentions were not really peaceful - despite his packaging as Nobel Peace-prize winning Constitutional lawyer, he approved several belligerent and destabilizing initiatives including: remaining in Iraq and Afghanistan (contrary to his campaign promises); illegally bombing Lybia (UN only approved a 'no-fly' zone); the overthrow of Ukraine's government (Nuland: "Fuck the EU!); and supporting ISIS (equip and train program; bogus air campaign, etc.).

Why doesn't Crooke reference his earlier article and take MSM to task for not seeing the development of a Cold War in 2016 (as Crooke had)? IMO this is because the establishment desperately wants to avoid people's making a connection between a new 'Cold War' and Russiagate.

But for anyone paying attention, the connection is impossible to avoid. As I've written many times: Russiagate was fundamentally a set up to initiate a new McCarthyism. The set up for Russiagate appears to have been a CIA project outsourced to MI6 and planning for it likely came after Kissinger called for MAGA in a 2014 WSJ Op-Ed (Trump was the MAGA candidate) to meet the challenge from Russia and China.

Welcome to the rabbit hole.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Aug 4 2019 15:08 utc | 95

Was Acosta given the cabinet post for services rendered re epstein? If so Trump has been compromised all along,An Iran war must be on the cards before Nov 2020, Trump will lose his voter base after being constrained by El Paso so his owners cannot take the chance that he fails re-election.

Posted by: Anon | Aug 6 2019 11:51 utc | 96

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