Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
March 24, 2023

The Rebirth Of The Axis of Evil

Twenty years ago the U.S. launched its war on Iraq. This proceeded by a massive propaganda campaign payed for and directed by the Pentagon.

Selling the Iraq War: a How-to Guide - Mar 23, 2023 - Jeffrey St. Clair / Counterpunch

According to the trade publication PR Week, the Rumsfeld Group sent “messaging advice” to the Pentagon. The group told Clarke and Rumsfeld that in order to get the American public to buy into the war on terrorism, they needed to suggest a link to nation states, not just nebulous groups such as al-Qaeda. In other words, there needed to be a fixed target for the military campaigns, some distant place to drop cruise missiles and cluster bombs. They suggested the notion (already embedded in Rumsfeld’s mind) of playing up the notion of so-called rogue states as the real masters of terrorism. Thus was born the Axis of Evil, which, of course, wasn’t an “axis” at all, since two of the states, Iran and Iraq, hated each other, and neither had anything at all to do with the third, North Korea.

Twenty years later we see the rebirth of that propaganda meme. First as a drip drip in rarely read magazines, then in rightwing mass media and into Congress. That then legitimates librul media to pick it up.

P.S.: Just as I launch this I see that Caitlin Johnstone picked up the same scheme with lots of additional sources:

They're Rebooting "Axis Of Evil" On The 20th Anniversary Of The Iraq Invasion

Posted by b on March 24, 2023 at 12:56 UTC | Permalink

next page »

let me be first!

a new piece by B. Marcetic on Responsible Statecraft, among others with following nice quote by Joe Biden in 2002:

“No Russian leader since Peter the Great has cast his lot as much with the West as Putin has”.

And this touching observation in the L.A.Times:

"Secretary of State Colin L. Powell showed up at the busy subway station on Pushkin Square here to place a bouquet of red roses beneath a plaque marking the spot where a suitcase bomb killed 13 and injured dozens Aug. 8, 2000. Powell bowed his head as Russian TV cameras filmed the scene."

RS 23/3/23
” For Putin, Iraq War marked a turning point in US-Russia relations – Leaked diplomatic cables show an increasingly skeptical Moscow, souring by the day on Washington’s determination to impose its will”:

Posted by: AG | Mar 24 2023 13:07 utc | 1

I notice propaganda a lot more now. The question is, was there always a lot of propaganda and we just notice it more now. Or if propaganda has really increased recently and that it might not be as effective as before. In any case, the common man is always the looser.

Posted by: meshpal | Mar 24 2023 13:11 utc | 2

meshpal | Mar 24 2023 13:11 utc | 2


Posted by: paddy | Mar 24 2023 13:14 utc | 3

I wonder what 'Déjà vu' is in Americanese?

Posted by: Merkin Scot | Mar 24 2023 13:17 utc | 4

The real "axis of evil" is AUKUS with NATO as the pet poodles/barking chihuahuas. Japan is betting on the wrong side, imho

Posted by: ctiger | Mar 24 2023 13:26 utc | 5

As the Twitter Files have recently reinforced, the US empire is a melding of corporate, billionaire, and state power, aka corporatocracy, aka fascism. The veneer of liberalism it gives itself serves to divide and conquer while putting a mask of generosity and kindness over its limitless hatred for everyone except it’s elites. To think that the US is in any way Marxist or “hard-left” demonstrates the power of propaganda.

Posted by: NoOneYouKnow | Mar 24 2023 13:28 utc | 6

RE bob sykes #4 above. Your comments are interesting since I consider US media and government to be far to the right. Socialist and Marxist? Have they been concerned with class struggle and the rights of the oppressed? Sure they are concerned with it, concerned with keeping citizens poor, confused and divided. Don't confuse today's Democrats as being "the left". Michael Hudson recently opined that the Democrats are the right wing of the Republican party, and I agree with that assessment. I'm pretty sure most Americans (even hyperconcerned patriots) have rarely if ever met a "commie" or "marxist".

Posted by: ThufferingThukotash | Mar 24 2023 13:28 utc | 7

This is a very useful link on the origins of the Iraq War. It was originally published by the Swiss journal Current Concerns. It has memory holed from that site now. Ouch. 

"The war on Iraq: Conceived in Israel", by Stephen J. Sniegoski.

Posted by: Paul GV | Mar 24 2023 13:29 utc | 8

I wonder what 'Déjà vu' is in Americanese?

Posted by: Merkin Scot | Mar 24 2023 13:17 utc | 4

"Same Old Shit" - - - - in my note-book.

Posted by: Engineer-John | Mar 24 2023 13:32 utc | 9

20 years ago on this date 24.03. NATO started with aggression on Serbia (78 days of bombing) to occupy 15% of Serbian territory Kosovo - Serbian holy land and to give it to Albanian Islamic terrorist. And we were allays in both world wars, together against AU empire (Serbia lost 70% of male population in WW1 and made decisive strike with brake of Salonica front) and later against Hitler and his allays (Croats and Bosnian Muslims killed more than 1M Serbs living there in Jasenovac genocide) also Albanians were Hitlers allays. After all this suffering from common enemies US decide to support them during 90ts when brake of Yugoslavia happened and to bomb Serbia in 1999 illegally braking international law with such power that in history of warfare there wasn't such a huge disproportion between 2 sides in war. Hole west with all superb aviation, missiles etc against Serbs alone. This is one of biggest backstabbing in human history. US became opposite of itself, instead land of freedom and liberty became land of lies and evil imperialism who is striving to satanic madness.

Posted by: Dach | Mar 24 2023 13:35 utc | 10

We've had a whole load of "axis of evil" and "State sponsors of terrorism".
The one consistent agent of state-sponsored terrorism in all my life has been (you guessed it) - The U $ of A.

Posted by: Engineer-John | Mar 24 2023 13:36 utc | 11

Axis of Evil, then and now... London, Washington, Tel Aviv.

Posted by: William Colby | Mar 24 2023 13:37 utc | 12

It looks like Rupert Murdoch & Co. network is quite busy these days trying to come up with some kind of effective storyline against the upcoming Eurasian World Order and its members, without much success.

Posted by: maskazer | Mar 24 2023 13:43 utc | 13

Merkin [email protected]

Cheers M

Posted by: sean the leprechaun | Mar 24 2023 13:52 utc | 14

The US needs a villain, always has, in order to have an identity, as corporate branding doesn't quite do it. Says a lot about the country, doesn't it?

For another expose of the selling of the Iraq war, Frank Rich's book The Greatest Story ever Sold is very good. The thoroughness of the propaganda system is quite amazing, and I'm assuming that it has only gotten worse in the two decades since.

Posted by: Mike R | Mar 24 2023 13:53 utc | 15

How about a genuine and obvious axis of evil: US-UK-EU.

Posted by: Art Thomas | Mar 24 2023 13:53 utc | 16

Unless England is annihilated or atleast neutered militarily on her own dirty English soil, the world will be seeing succession of false axis of evil. The real satanic evil is england which must be destroyed Russia has been foolish not to even recognise that only by killing England, can Russia survive.

Posted by: San | Mar 24 2023 13:53 utc | 17

This is projection, considering that the Trilateral Commission is indeed the axis of evil.

Posted by: Colin | Mar 24 2023 13:54 utc | 18

The 'right wing' in the United States, represented by Senators Vance and Paul and Representatives Gaetz and Massie, is against the continuation of American involvement in foreign conflicts.

The 'liberal' media does not take its cues from right-wing sources. It is bought and paid for directly by the Pentagon and the State Department, which are staffed by graduates of the same Ivy League schools that produce 'journalists' who work for mainstream media institutions.

The role of the international left, especially its corporate, neoliberal elements, in bringing about the beginnings of the Third World War, cannot be ignored.

Posted by: Nimrod | Mar 24 2023 13:58 utc | 19

You'd think they'd at least come up with a new propaganda term after they failed to bring down the first Axis of Evil (Iran and N Korea still being "evil", i.e. independent, and Iraq will get out of the empire's grip sooner or later). It wasn't an axis anyway.

Eventually, the Axis of Evil will be the entire world minus the U.S. and Israel.

Posted by: aquileia | Mar 24 2023 14:01 utc | 20

Discussion of the resurfacing of US media propaganda regarding the “Axis of Evil” serves to remind me that we are all casualties of war, for it has been a War on Truth for quite some time. While relatively few of the billions of people targeted by the War on Truth have lost neither life nor limb, we will lose our humanity unless we keep fighting to discern truth, for truth—what is real—is the object of the human intellect, and our human intellect is our highest faculty.

I, for one, would rather die, be disabled, or be imprisoned rather than accept the lies. Keep fighting for the truth.

Posted by: Ciaran | Mar 24 2023 14:03 utc | 21

Maybe it is just me turned cynical in my old age, but it seems like our side lies about so much now that getting the same level of belief will be challenging. Can the same folks who say a man can get pregnant sell a war convincingly?

Posted by: Jmaas | Mar 24 2023 14:04 utc | 22

a friend of mine does some work for the israel and he said that they are really concerned in the knesett in the democratic government in jerewsalem as they believe animal assad and putin new hitler have gone insane not to mention using depleted uranoium bombs missiles in new khazaria
we nee a new coalitions of the gentiles to protect us like we did in 1945 in germany already

Posted by: mo hess | Mar 24 2023 14:11 utc | 23

The difference between us in liberal democratic societies and those of 'autocratic regimes' is that we are lead to believe all propaganda and lies by our governments while they know they are being lied to.

Many moons ago during Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, I was watching US network news segment about evils perpetrated by Soviet forces on Afghan civilians with rural Afghan man voiced over with details of abuses. Being Afghan and speaking Farsi; I found what man was saying in Farsi was how this has been third year of drought. On first year of drought his crops failed and he sustained family with savings and planted saved seeds following year. Drought again second year caused crop failure and forced him to take loans and mortgage farm in hope of better crops next year only to lose everything now due to third year of drought.

Propaganda machines are at work yet again trying to thwart the demise of Pax Americana.

It shall be turbulent and bloody couple of decades as this struggle plays out.

Posted by: Saag | Mar 24 2023 14:13 utc | 24

I notice propaganda a lot more now. The question is, was there always a lot of propaganda and we just notice it more now. Or if propaganda has really increased recently and that it might not be as effective as before. In any case, the common man is always the looser.

Posted by: meshpal | Mar 24 2023 13:11 utc | 2

The propaganda becomes less and less effective, and so there is more of it to try to make up the difference. Of course, this is an arms race and comes out where we are now, mostly advertising presented as such, or as "content".

Posted by: Bemildred | Mar 24 2023 14:18 utc | 25

How The Threat Of China Was Made In The USA

I recently came across this 2022 Al Jazeera video by Sana Saeed outlining how US demonization of China has been going on for well over a century already. Worth watching.

Posted by: farm ecologist | Mar 24 2023 14:21 utc | 26

Posted by: Nimrod | Mar 24 2023 13:58 utc | 19

I prefer b's bastardization of liberal into librul to describe Western politics/politicians. They are not left - the left has virtually no power in the West and particularly in the US. When the US president breaks a rail strike, he is not "left". Some of the politicians make pro-labor noises, but nothing really happens. To me libruls are mostly concerned with access of minorities and alphabet groups to status, money and privilege while maintaining the current power structures.

Posted by: JMW | Mar 24 2023 14:26 utc | 27

There really is nothing new under the sun. They gotta re-use 20 year old propaganda. I have been picking up this vibe for a few months now with all the talk of "defending democracy"; it just smacks of the same attitude of the early GWOT when we were told "terrorists hate us for our freedoms!".

Posted by: right2remainviolent | Mar 24 2023 14:32 utc | 28

I prefer the unambiguous term « fake left ».

Posted by: Featherless | Mar 24 2023 14:33 utc | 29

In response to
I wonder what 'Déjà vu' is in Americanese?

Posted by: Merkin Scot | Mar 24 2023 13:17 utc | 4

Wag The Dog

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 24 2023 14:34 utc | 30

Bloomberg: US Fears a War-Weary World May Embrace China’s Ukraine Peace Bid

And on top of that, it looks like peace is breaking out in the Middle East. It would be their worst nightmare come true.

Posted by: aquileia | Mar 24 2023 14:44 utc | 31

@Nimrod #19:

The role of the international left, especially its corporate, neoliberal elements, in bringing about the beginnings of the Third World War, cannot be ignored.

People you are describing are not “left”. The term “international left” is well-established and means various non-coopted Communist and Socialist parties, movements and individuals around the globe, many in developing countries. It has nothing to do with U.S. men in drag reading fairytales to children in kindergartens or fake left U.S. women using left-wing rhetoric to raise funds from gullible people while actually serving U.S. Democratic Party (a right-wing party).

Posted by: S | Mar 24 2023 14:47 utc | 32

Seriously, fuck them. The old saying "haters gonna hate" stands true. This will not be decided by libruls in the west sitting in their coffee shops, wringing their hands about Diktators from the East.

It'll be decided by the ROW getting together and just getting on with it. Let the western MSM pundits spin their dits. We have to learn not to care anymore, because they are just bumping their gums.

Posted by: SimonC | Mar 24 2023 14:52 utc | 33

There is no Axis, but there is a great evil in the officially called USA. This evil correctly identified by the Grand Ayatollah as the Great Satan is surely more precise than "the greatest country in the history of the world."

As we backseat drive our way to Armageddon, we mustn't forget we're not dealing with 'strategery' but with a death cult that worships gold and believes most of humanity are cockroaches.

Putin/Xi know what they are dealing with, and will act accordingly which will be a bigger surprise to the USA than the Hollywood production of 911.

Posted by: gottlieb | Mar 24 2023 14:59 utc | 34

Wait till they hear about the Group of Friends in Defense of the UN Charter lol

Posted by: Bart | Mar 24 2023 15:13 utc | 35

Back in the 1940's who was known at the Tibetan, the head of a Lamasary in the Himalayas, dictated extensively to his 'secretary', Alice Bailey, on global affairs and other matters. She published:

"The area of difficulty—as is well known—is the Near East and Palestine. The Jews, by their illegal and terroristic activities, have laid a foundation of great difficulty for those who are seeking to promote world peace. As a Jewish member of my Ashram pointed out (and I commend him on his soul vision), the Jews have partially again opened the door to the Forces of Evil, which worked originally through Hitler and his evil gang. The "sealing" of that door had not been successfully accomplished, and it is the part of wisdom to discover this in time. These Forces of Evil work through a triangle of evil, one point of which is to be found in the Zionist Movement in the United States, another in central Europe, and the third in Palestine. Palestine is no longer a Holy Land and should not be so regarded."

Benjamin Creme, who provided information in regard to the presence and teachings of the current head of the Spiritual Hierarchy, Maitreya, commented in 2004 on that perspective:
"After the defeat of the Axis powers by the Allies in 1945, the “forces of evil”, as we call them - “the Lords of Materiality” as they are known by the Hierarchy of Light - were being gradually sealed off to their own domain: the upholding of the Matter aspect of the planet. With the creation of the state of Israel, in 1948, by terrorist action against the British Mandatory Power and the people of Palestine, it was, according to the Master DK, “as if the forces of evil got a foot in the door again”. Israel is the central point of a triangle of evil which works through Israel, the Pentagon in the US and certain states in Eastern Europe. What we are witnessing now is an explosion of this evil force which must be countered and resolved by humanity with the aid of the Hierarchy of Light - Maitreya and His group of Masters of the Wisdom."

The battle in Ukraine from that perspective takes on a different light.

Posted by: westly | Mar 24 2023 15:27 utc | 36

there's a very interesting article at Counterpunch today, advising S Korea to acquire nuclear weapons ASAP!!! the US umbrella is not enough, get your own! will CP be advising Japan to acquire nukes next? because of what a threat China is to Japan?

one does quickly learn from the article that N Korea is unafraid of the US military. or at least NK will not be dictated to.

now, if CP published this garbage because it reveals something about the state of the USM, why can't St Clair or someone simply link to it and discuss its implications, rather than promoting it on the website?

if it's not obvious enough which article i refer to,

A South Korean Aircraft Carrier Won’t Scare North Korea, But Sadly Nukes Might

if it's sad, why is he endorsing it?

and why does CP promote any writer who does not explicitly endorse eviction of US/foreign forces and reunification of Korea?

Posted by: rjb1.5 | Mar 24 2023 15:41 utc | 37

Again with the Manichean rhetoric attempting to promote the never-ending struggle of Good Vs Evil that's been a Western staple for centuries. The truth of course is rather different: We have one rather large Bloc comprising @60% of the world's nations versus a very small Bloc of @18% of the world's nations with the remaining 22% leaning to the larger Bloc but still sitting on the fence. When looked at in terms of global population, the difference is even larger with 75% versus 17% with only 8% fence sitting. The genuine Allies are clearly the majority compared to the genuine Axis. The meme is clearly directed at the real Axis to try and whip up War Fervor. Unfortunately for the genuine Axis, Truth and Genuine History are not on its side; rather, those two sentinels condemn the Axis as THE AXIS, and the genuine evil--facts that remain easy to find and distribute.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 24 2023 15:50 utc | 38

china-russia-nk, or usa-uk-israel

the choice is pretty obvious... we ought to have a poll done at moa!! show the results of the poll to the western msm, lol... you know they will run with it, as in runaway as far as they can from it...

Posted by: james | Mar 24 2023 15:56 utc | 39

I had just about started blogging (under a different name,) when President Dubya launched The Axis of Evil. Having been an anti - war campaigner since the 1960s I responded by creating my own imperialist monster, consisting of France, the UK and The US - The FUKUS Axis.
Now I can claim that at least my warmongering triumvirate is still in business.

Posted by: arthur foxake | Mar 24 2023 15:59 utc | 40

Lavrov has written an article for the Scout publication, "Russian Diplomacy in a Changing World", the following being his introduction:

I am glad to have this opportunity to address the readers of the socio-political magazine Scout, to share my assessment of the current situation on the world stage and the priorities of Russian foreign policy.

We are living in a time of geopolitical change of truly historic proportions. As President Vladimir Putin noted, "the change of milestones is a painful process, but natural and inevitable. The future world order is being formed before our eyes."

I have repeatedly had to say that the main trend of modern international development is the strengthening of multipolarity. New world centers in Eurasia, the Asia-Pacific region, the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America are achieving impressive success in various fields – based on independence, state sovereignty and cultural and civilizational identity. Guided, first of all, by their fundamental national interests, they pursue an independent foreign policy. Thus, they objectively contribute to the formation of a new, more stable, fair, democratic polycentric world order, reflecting the natural, inalienable right of peoples to determine their own destiny, models of internal political and socio-economic development.

For those who've closely followed Lavrov's statements over the last 18 months, most of this will be a reiteration, but many have not had that exposure; so, I'll be adding it to my VK Wall later today.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 24 2023 16:00 utc | 41

"The emerging China-Russia-Iran axis may force the United States to choose between some unappealing options."

Let me guess...

- Realise USA is out of its depth?

- Stop blathering and start listening?

- Sober up?

- Apologise for all the hatred, bullshit & Penis Envy?

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Mar 24 2023 16:03 utc | 42

Axis of Evil = US, UK, NATO.
US whining about Russia flying over US bases. Turns out it is illegal US bases in Syria. Perhaps US should go home.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Mar 24 2023 16:08 utc | 43

Propaganda works even if then themes are recycled. The propaganda against both China and Russia has been going on for 10 to 20 years at least. Propaganda does not start with some big event but is more like laying little turds day after day in a field until the field becomes fertile to plant physical or economic war if need be.

Following are two links to Pew Research showing the hostile and favorable view of both Russia and China over time. They cover the rules based lackies.

Unfavorable Views of China Reach Historic Highs in Many Countries

Views of Russia and Putin remain negative across 14 nations

Speaking of recycled propaganda, check out these two illustrations.

Posted by: Erelis | Mar 24 2023 16:10 utc | 44

Top Pentagon officials are lobbying Congress for a $842-billion defense budget, including a 40% increase directed to military capabilities in the Pacific. The cost is justified, the officials say, because China’s response to the US buildup is itself aggressive:

“China's actions, said Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, ‘are moving it down the path toward confrontation and potential conflict with its neighbors and possibly the United States.’ He said deterring and preparing for war ‘is extraordinarily expensive, but it’s not as expensive as fighting a war. And this budget prevents war and prepares us to fight it if necessary.’"

Also - defending the rules-based order is also expensive, but not as expensive as fighting for the rules-based order:

"Milley said the intent is to make sure that Ukraine remains a free and independent country with its territory intact, maintaining global security and the world order that has existing since World War II.
‘If that goes out the window,’ he said, ‘we’ll be doubling our defense budgets at that point, because that will introduce not an era of great power competition, that will begin an era of great power conflict. And that will be extraordinarily dangerous for the whole world.’”

Posted by: jayc | Mar 24 2023 16:20 utc | 45

There is certainly an Axis of Evil on this planet.

But it's the Axis of Evil that wages pre-emptive wars of aggression around the world based upon Orwellian lies about "defending Freedom"; non-existent Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq; or a War on Terrorism that is not really about fighting terrorism.

This Axis of Evil is guilty of murdering millions of people as a result--all the while, it tries to cloak itself as a crusader for Freedom, Democracy, Liberty, Human Rights, LGBTQ+ and 101 flavors of gender, and a Rules-Based New World Order.

How Many Millions of People Have Been Killed in America’s Post-9/11 Wars? – Part One: Iraq

How Many People Has the U.S. Killed in its Post-9/11 Wars? Part 2: Afghanistan and Pakistan

How Many Millions Have Been Killed in America’s Post-9/11 Wars? Part 3: Libya, Syria, Somalia and Yemen

If this is not evil, nothing is.

This Axis of Evil is called the American Axis--the American Empire and its war criminal allies in the Anglosphere, Europe (like Germany), and Coalition of the Willing/Killing.

During the Cold War, Ronnie Reagan (the original Dementia-Patient-in-Chief before Joe Biden) called the Soviet Union the "evil empire."

That was a classic example of American psychological projection where the self-styled Land of the Free projects its own malevolent character onto its opponents.

Indeed, Psychological Projection is a defining pathology of the American Evil Empire and its assorted crime partners--right up there with bombing other nations back to the Stone Age with Shock 'N Awe.

Posted by: ak74 | Mar 24 2023 16:29 utc | 46

it was always just the boomers recycling "axis" and then adding the childish and even more retro "EVILLLLL!!!" to appeal to the hicks who failed history class and worship a jewish zombie. i guess we need to hang garlic and burn sage to keep the EVILLLLL!!! yellow devils out of our mud huts.

the first iteration had the advantage of pure, seething post-9/11 rage and the way it supposedly brought the country "together". this time "americans" are in their normal mode of hating each other and the government so i doubt it will stick among any but the most indoctrinated swamp scum and MSM drones. there's also the unfortunate distraction of the western financial "system" having its collective bullshit called on the way to a glorious implosion.

Posted by: the pair | Mar 24 2023 16:31 utc | 47

I wonder what 'Déjà vu' is in Americanese?
Posted by: Merkin Scot | Mar 24 2023 13:17 utc | 4

It’s Americanese when you say it like Yogi Berra: It’s deja vu all over again.

Posted by: Sakineh Bagoom | Mar 24 2023 16:35 utc | 48

Same lying shit.
Coming from different assholes.

Posted by: jpc | Mar 24 2023 16:52 utc | 49

Speaking of pariah nations, wouldn't the apartheid State of Israel, which refuses to sign Nuclear non-proliferation, and even extradition agreements, fit the bill perfectly?

Posted by: pyrrhus | Mar 24 2023 16:59 utc | 50

None of this is going to end well. Everyone gets damaged when old empires die and new empires are born.

Posted by: circumspect | Mar 24 2023 17:04 utc | 51

Timely reminder of the depraved wars that GAE started and are still concocting. It seems that these neocons are trapped until the illusion of facing 1990s' Russia or even further back in a time of American hegemony still got both firm
financial and geopolitical grasps on maajority of the world sans Soviet bloc. Don't they have any new scripts or plans to offer? This is no longer a case of, if it ain't broke don't touch it. The plans are at best SNAFU, but more like FUBAR and ain't no plan B to slow down the empire's downfall. With the sme ol' lying and threatening before resorting to bullying tactics, these globalist cowards who only dared to directly intervene in small/medium countries, are now being punched in the face by one big guy and get out-debated by the other.

Satisfying to observe recent unfolding events especially China-Russia presidential meeting. The geopolitical adults are mmending ties in Middle East and forging/reinforcing African ones, in contrary to tantrum-throwing democratic freedom-loving genderfluid rules-based order of liars, murderers and thieves.

Posted by: _newbie_ | Mar 24 2023 17:06 utc | 52

They got nothing. They got nothing else and nothing better.

Impossible to hire good writers when education has been destroyed for generations. If there were somehow a good writer he would not be recognized. If the general editor saw good writing he would fire the freak rather than advance him. No one with IQ above room temperature would want to work for these creeps.

Now add gerontocracy and nepotism and institutional inertia.

USA has long been about Hollywood and the military. Hollywood is boring and dead. Can't even write a simple romantic comedy any longer - which of the possible 240 genders shall our romantic leads be? Military is dead, all the rcruits are fat illiterate slobs, officers a version of same.

This is exactly the same as the 'junior partner' story yesterday. No one can write, no one has anything to say.

Posted by: oldhippie | Mar 24 2023 17:12 utc | 53

Ah, the Axis of Evil makes its triumphant return.

But I am trepidatious to say that there is no evil. There is only spirit running up against itself in the form of its own dialectic.

The evil in this case is those on the other side of the wall that are not afraid of the rational. They are not afraid to "let er rip." (Spirit, that is)

Spirit is the genie in the bottle that the Talmudists in their disgusting stupidity thought they could keep forever locked away. But like the game of whack-a-mole, eventually, spirit begins to appear out of two holes at once and then three, and then four, and so on. It can not be smashed down by any force, no matter how authoritarian or crazed.

Are we there yet, Lord?

Posted by: NemesisCalling | Mar 24 2023 17:12 utc | 54

In my memory span, propaganda was always there quite alot of it, but it was never blanket propagander vertualy 100% total coverage.
Where are the media descending voices, and aggressive interview techniques holding the polatitans to account. Onesided coverage of a war has to be an unreality.

Even in America you had 'Watergate' and Nixion got thrown out by media.
No this is a whole new level of misinformation and mind control.
Also I note....
The algorithms have smothered all activist sites on the net.

Posted by: Mark2 | Mar 24 2023 17:31 utc | 55

b on March 24, 2023 at 12:56 UTC
‘P.S.: Just as I launch this I see that Caitlin Johnstone picked up the same scheme with lots of additional sources:’

It’s worth repeating Caitlin’s previous message. She is a good writer.

‘The illusory truth effect is a cognitive bias which causes people to mistake something they have heard many times for an established fact, because the way the human brain receives and interprets information tends to draw little or no distinction between repetition and truth. Propagandists and empire managers often take advantage of this glitch in our wetware, which is what's happening when you see them repeating key phrases over and over again that they want people to believe.’

Posted by: olaf22 | Mar 24 2023 17:41 utc | 56

Mark2 @ 55

Watergate was as tightly managed as an information operation could be. If you believe Woodward & Bernstein and Washington Post were brave heroes you bought the narrative hook, line, sinker.

Posted by: oldhippie | Mar 24 2023 17:41 utc | 57

@ Dach | Mar 24 2023 13:35 utc | 10

The date was 1999 not 2003, done by Bill Clinton. The first “Axis of Evil” concocted for the public, by Clinton’s unelected successor Bush Jr, was already in the making with the articulation of the Wolfowitz Doctrine that was concocted by the Strausians who grabbed the reins of power of unelected permanent state (deep state) after the peaceful dissolution of the Soviet Union.

24 years ago today [March 24, 1999], NATO began its illegal war against Yugoslavia. When the media criticized the bombing - NATO bombed the media outlet. When China criticized the bombing - NATO bombed the Chinese embassy. Then a criminal tribunal was set up that would not investigate NATO. Glenn Diesen @ twitter

Posted by: suzan | Mar 24 2023 17:46 utc | 58

Oldhippy @ 57
Maybe your right.
The saying is 'theirs one born every minute '
Which meens were all fools !
Some of us are aware of that and some not.

Posted by: Mark2 | Mar 24 2023 17:52 utc | 59

The only no good entity here is the US government located in our nation’s capital which I humbly labeled Washington District of Caligula. They call themselves policemen of the world, but the only police man that they resemble is that corrupt police chief in the film The Godfather, who the character Micheal Corleone labeled corrupt and into criminal rackets. Very similar to those ruling over use.

Posted by: Jose Garcia | Mar 24 2023 17:58 utc | 60

The real axis of evil is US-UK-EU led by the terror state USA under the neocon regime of Biden.

We should really coordinate to flood social media with that, get it trending on Twitter etc.

Posted by: Zet | Mar 24 2023 18:15 utc | 61

Oh and let’s not forgot John Bolton’s ‘Troika of Tyranny,’ Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua, which somehow threatens ‘our democracy.’ Apparently the neoconservatives suffer from some form of arrested development, leaving them unable to address real-life complexities with anything other than grammar-school chants and alliterative slogans.

Posted by: jmj59 | Mar 24 2023 18:39 utc | 62

@ karlof1 | Mar 24 2023 15:50 utc | 38

Some very good points.

“Evil” seems to be so very prevalent in today’s propaganda. When I hear it I immediately cringe, as I know somebody has a bridge they want to sell me.

The intent of the usage is for the victim of the word to revert to base emotional state and suspend all rational thought. Forget about history, facts and anything empirical, as “ the devil” Is play. IMHO there is no evil, just greed ( narcissism) and stupidity.

The truly sad thing is that I also know the person is spewing the bs is unworthy the time of day, as they are incapable of an original thought.

What the RoW is currently encountering is the “Axis of Stupidity”.

Posted by: Michael.j | Mar 24 2023 18:42 utc | 63

Propaganda about climate change and global warming are overwhelming this 78 year old who has seen a lot of different weather. The propaganda is invasive in daily life and so obvious as to be insulting.

Posted by: PhCheese | Mar 24 2023 18:51 utc | 64

I can see two negative outcomes for America over lets say the next three years.

But surely their must be one single optimistic way out of the hole they have made for them selves ?

Joking aside America needs to find its very own Putin.

Or maybe get one on loan from Russia.
They don't seem to have a problem with duel-nationals.

Wink wink.

Posted by: Mark2 | Mar 24 2023 19:05 utc | 65

. Can the same folks who say a man can get pregnant sell a war convincingly?

Posted by: Jmaas | Mar 24 2023 14:04 utc | 22

HA! Of course not. But they aren't going to try. All they need - and already have - are enemies and a war narrative involving them. Then as everything starts collapsing all around us rather than blame it on ourselves and the corrupt elites we have enabled with our submissive complacency, we will do as we are bid and blame it on the enemies. And then - irony of ironies - we will ask those same elites to rescue and then take care of us.

All over again...


Unless what? Aye, there's the rub. We have no alternative - unless (gasp) the unthinkabke: DRUMPF!!

Posted by: Scorpion | Mar 24 2023 19:18 utc | 66

None of this is going to end well. Everyone gets damaged when old empires die and new empires are born.

Posted by: circumspect | Mar 24 2023 17:04 utc | 51


Posted by: Scorpion | Mar 24 2023 19:42 utc | 67

Deja vu in Americanese is "Different day, same shit".

Posted by: wagelaborer | Mar 24 2023 19:53 utc | 68

Speaking of state sponsored terrorism, what should we hear about Nord Stream ?
20 years after the US proved to be the real Axis of Evil, the pro-Ukrainian group of 6 not-seals are so conveniently independant that they remind me of bad old al-CIAda.

Posted by: chb | Mar 24 2023 19:58 utc | 69

Medical @ 2:

The propaganda has always been present but it had to compete for attention with films, TV shows, music, literature and other cultural outputs about other topics and issues of concern to the general public. As long as people had the money and security to support this output, the political propaganda remained in the background.

Then, starting in the 1980s, with govts privatising state industries, and the beneficiaries of privatisation hoarding money in tax havens and speculation instead of investing in manufacturing and creating useful and meaningful employment, Western culture and society gradually deteriorated over time as the general public (b/c of loss of jobs and stagnation of wages amid rising costs of living and property speculation raising housing prices) could no longer support mainstream and non-mainstream cultural activities. What activities were supported by public funding also had to adhere to demands and requirements supporting an identity-politics agenda spouting false tolerance and diversity. In this new climate, political propaganda could come to the fore.

However, because of the deterioration over time in Western living standards, education has also declined, and with that decline the quality of propaganda (for want of a better term) has also declined. It's not only now more repetitive, it's much more crude, blatant and (most of all) tired and lacking any original ideas. Hence the reuse of tropes like "Axis of Evil" and other expressions from World War II to describe nations that clearly have little in common with one another but have to be lumped together somehow.

The arrival of AI may make propaganda even more shrill, banal and repetitive, as the AI is likely to imitate the already depleted and exhausted intellectual source material. At what point the general public becomes so alienated from those producing increasing amounts of rubbish that people rebel instead of ignore it becomes the issue.

Posted by: Refinnejenna | Mar 24 2023 20:11 utc | 70

I think the big question to ask and answer is this....
Should America have a president that can win against Russia and China. (Might is right style)
Should America find a leader who will compete for the moral high ground.
Fair trade with other countrys,
Peace loving and respecting his public no matter what skin tone.
Putting people before money.

Posted by: Mark2 | Mar 24 2023 20:27 utc | 71

“The group told Clarke and Rumsfeld that in order to get the American public to buy into the war on terrorism”
They don’t deem that necessary anymore!

Posted by: M | Mar 24 2023 20:39 utc | 72

re 45, jayc

"Top Pentagon officials are lobbying Congress for a $842-billion defense budget, ..."

Which doesn't include, according to Ritter, nearly $300 million of in-kind aid given already to 404.

No doubt these will be fabulous functional fearsome weapons. oh, 'Merikans can't afford them? Never mind that, print the money, impoverish the nation. Besides, we'll be in a war. Probably one right here on US soil. It's going to be interesting to see what that looks like.

Posted by: oracle | Mar 24 2023 20:40 utc | 73

From the "Axis of Evil" archive:
Evil Upheaval

Posted by: poli sci | Mar 24 2023 20:47 utc | 74

Posted by: Refinnejenna | Mar 24 2023 20:11 utc | 70

‘The arrival of AI may make propaganda even more shrill, banal and repetitive, as the AI is likely to imitate the already depleted and exhausted intellectual source material. At what point the general public becomes so alienated from those producing increasing amounts of rubbish that people rebel instead of ignore it becomes the issue.’

Ah I like that. Yes, ‘life’ as advertised, promoted in the media becomes ever more bland. An ever increasing minority ignores it, and media ‘life’ does not reflect reality but is a circle of tv media ‘personalities’, characters with no plot, only influencing each other into insanity. Perhaps ignoring is a rebellion. I recall Ken Kesey’s speech in the 1960’s. ‘If you don’t like what you are offered, turn around and look the other way’. Ie vote with your feet.

Governments do not generate ideas, they usually only copy and follow trends, are reactive rather than creative. I live in hope that there is ‘intelligent’ AI however, and there are game writers out there who research more authentic versions of reality and do a lot of fact checking.

Posted by: olaf22 | Mar 24 2023 20:50 utc | 75

Olaf22 @ 75
Now that's an idea !
Dispense with a president and just run the govenment with an app !
Could it actually do a worse job ?

Posted by: Mark2 | Mar 24 2023 20:55 utc | 76

“Axis of evil” sound like a marketing campaign
Created by an advertising firm

Posted by: Dingo | Mar 24 2023 20:56 utc | 77

Posted by: ctiger | Mar 24 2023 13:26 utc | 5:

Japan is betting on the wrong side, imho

Japan is aware of the blood debts it owes. Japan will bet on any side that confronts China. This will be the case until the debt is repaid.

Posted by: Oriental Voice | Mar 24 2023 20:57 utc | 78

Mark2 @ 59

Seymour Hersh has been getting good notices lately. Read his book Price of Power. Bob Woodward was a captain in Naval Intelligence detailed to Henry Kissinger's personal staff. He left that assignment for no apparent reason, got a job with a suburban D.C. shopping newspaper. A few months of that and he became a byline reporter with Washington Post. And immediately put on the Watergate story. This career path is nonpossible.

There are a hundred other ways to know it was all scripted, this one is pretty definitive. And who talks from deep in his throat? Hints above.

Posted by: oldhippie | Mar 24 2023 21:09 utc | 79

I wish Deja Vu americana would be that great album with CSN&Y. Unfortunately does not seem to be the case. But let us rejoice and carry on, love is coming to us all.

Where are you going now, my love?
Where will you be tomorrow?
Will you bring me happiness?
Will you bring me sorrow?

Posted by: Paco | Mar 24 2023 21:10 utc | 80

Only dunderheads read these degenarates.

Posted by: Mohale Thoka | Mar 24 2023 21:13 utc | 81

Oldhippie @ 79
Thanks for that.
Watergate was a long time ago, just when I was becoming aware of what was really going on. So i must
admit I haven't been aware of that,
I only waded through half the conspiracy theorys. It became impossable. As you know the other half being deliberately placed by the CIA to discredited the true half.
We swim in muddy waters.

Posted by: Mark2 | Mar 24 2023 21:19 utc | 82

Michael.j @63--

Thanks for your reply. IMO, the Greeks had it correct with the afterlife being the same for all. Greek drama and its most famous Sagas almost universally call out greed as the #1 human failing, and so we have concepts like hubris, pleonexia, megalomania, and others that spring forth from that initial base. I'd argue that Mosaic Law is premised similarly as greed drives all the prohibited behaviors, and the worship of greed is what caused the tablets to be canceled in what we might call the first act of wokeness--the Hebrews clearly weren't worthy and those saying they're their descendants are acting just as badly. Greed from my anthropological POV is a recent phenomenon in humans as materialism is required for greed to exist, and materialism didn't exist until settled existence began that allowed accumulation. Existing cultures that were every society's control device were incapable of dealing with greed and those factors that caused its existence, and that remains the case today.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 24 2023 21:24 utc | 83

A better example of projection could hardly be devised. The US referring to an Axis of Evil. What entity bombed Serbia? Destroyed Iraq and Libya? Funded terrorists in, and continues to steal from, Syria? Who cooked up this Ukrainian hell? Which government pushes the LGBTQWERTY the hardest?

Posted by: catbonez | Mar 24 2023 21:24 utc | 84

Mark2 | Mar 24 2023 17:52 utc | 59
It’s *always* been in play.
We @bar are among the privileged few who can see some of it, some of the time.
Someone in recent threads demonstrated they were ignorant of the POS Churchill. As a war correspondent he managed to spin a narrative about himself that extends to this day. Craven celebrity CNN correspondents would blush at the blatant self-promotion.
My father went to his grave believing Churchill’s lies about the Fall of Singapore, and how and why he ended up a Prisoner of War on the Burma Railway.
The Brutish documents and cables were locked away for 75 years.
Some have been released (others withheld still as Official Secrets).
Reading, it can be seen clearly the Brutish knew exactly what the Japanese were doing, and the “defence” of Singapore would fail. (As it was intended to fail). That’s just one example of Lies. My dad, just one example of millions of men scared physically, mentally and spiritually, by wars that need never have been fought.

There’s barely anything you’ve been told about anything “significant” that isn’t a lie. And the Biggest Lie of them all concerns British Palestine, “six million” and Israel.
If the response to that suggestion is shock, outrage and anger - you’ve been “triggered” emotionally. Ask yourself why. Answer. The programming and self-censorship has worked.

Posted by: Melaleuca | Mar 24 2023 21:29 utc | 85

Melaleuce @ 85
Yep I agree and am aware of all you say. We are all guilty of it.
All we can do is critical thinking, speaking up to call out the bad stuff.
Which is what i'v done for 50 years as an anti-fascist.
We can only do what we can do.
The people that close their minds to the geopolitical crimes are the guilty.
But thanks.

Posted by: Mark2 | Mar 24 2023 21:42 utc | 86

Hmm. The propaganda doesn’t “compete” with movies.
Movies ARE the propaganda.
Picking up on Old Hippy re Watergate. And Woodwood’s improbable career.
For decades, what I “knew” about Watergate was what I “learned” watching the movie “All the President’s Men”.
I had no reason to question it, until 9/11, when I fell down the rabbit hole and learned to question EVERYTHING.
Especially the “Truths” that must never be questioned.
After all, what are “conspiracy theories”. ?
There’s nothing “theoretical” about the conspiracies. The players just don’t want anyone to look or think too intently - so they mock those that inquire as “nut jobs”. …

Posted by: Melaleuca | Mar 24 2023 21:47 utc | 87

Posted by: Dach | Mar 24 2023 13:35 utc | 10

Breakup of Yugoslavia and subsequent bombardment of Bosnian Serbs and Serbia proper was an exercise aimed at Russian audience. This was to show how Russian Federation will be treated in case it resorts to force to protect its interests. Serbian territory was grabbed ignoring international law and NATO bases were installed to control the region. Satanisation of Serbian people and their elected leaders served as in exercise in vicious propaganda that we observe nowadays repeated. Serbs paid a high price for standing up against the US but at least we helped Russian people realise with whom they are dealing with .That hopefully gave them time to properly prepare for the current proxy war in Ukraine. Once the West collapses financially and militarily I hope that US and NATO presence will disappear from territory of the former Yugoslavia, the sooner that happens the better.

Posted by: Milos | Mar 24 2023 21:54 utc | 88

Posted by: Melaleuca | Mar 24 2023 21:29 utc | 85

Good post and interesting family history. My father believes the narrative bout Putin. Try talking to an American liberal, or even most conservatives, and they have been 100% pre-programmed by the ubiquitous, non-stop propaganda that he's evil incarnate. Instead of trying to argue facts with them anymore, I just ask them "If the whole of the American establishment including corporations, D.C. and Wall Street have all "concluded" something about a foreign leader, doesn't that point to something he must be doing right?"

They still don't get it. I am accused of being a Putin fan or fool more often than not.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Mar 24 2023 21:56 utc | 89

The question of whether the epistemic violence we call "propagandizing" is at a higher pitch or volume today (in "the west") than before -- this is interesting to me. For my part, I'm much more skeptical of nearly everyone, especially imperialistic clowns who flagrantly insult my intelligence (what little remains).

But how deep is the taproot of official deception, so ubiquitous today? Caitlin Johnstone casually observes that USA is now allied with all three of the WWII "axis" powers. Ward Churchill and others have documented the seamless integration of Nazi officials into "the west" after that unpleasantness in 1945.

Tom Lehrer even wrote a song about it:

Don't say that he's hypocritical
Say rather that he's apolitical
"Once the rockets are up, who cares where they come down?
That's not my department!" says Werner von Braun

Posted by: Aleph_Null | Mar 24 2023 22:01 utc | 90

Tom-Q-collins @ 89
Thanks for your input Tom, always worth reading.
I agree with your point, what's all the Putin hate about ?
It's envy and jealously pure and simple the green eyed monster,
Granny red eye.
When they look at Vladimir Putin they see all the qualitys they lack, and they hate that and him.
You only have see video of him in front of a large crowd or parade.
Humble, compasanate. Understated.

Posted by: Mark2 | Mar 24 2023 22:09 utc | 91

another Responsible Statecraft:

about a little drill to erase Iraq War history:

"AIPAC, FDD websites erase all evidence of their Iraq War cheerleading -They aren’t alone in trying to memory-hole their roles in pushing false WMD and Iraq-9/11 connections.":


Posted by: AG | Mar 24 2023 22:14 utc | 92

Tom_Q_Collins | Mar 24 2023 21:56 utc | 89
In the decade post 9/11, I went proselytising. I believed (with religious fervour) that once people realised how and why they’d been lied to… they’d be angry and demand the lies stop.
Nope. *I* was the one they wanted to stop and just STFU. “We want to have a nice relaxed family bbq or gathering without you ruining it with your stupid conspiracy theories”.
Convid was the clincher. I knew it was lab-created in March 2020. I knew to avoid the jabberwocky. I told no one, unless I was asked. And then only tentatively.
By Ukraine Feb 22, I’m as silent as a monk.
The only place for discussion is here. And even here I find I can be bothered “arguing” less and less. By the time someone stumbles their way to this bar, they should already be aware the “narrative” on any event is just that: stories and lies.

Posted by: Melaleuca | Mar 24 2023 22:15 utc | 93

Here in reality world the axis of evil has been the US, Israel, & KSA for the longest time. Now that KSA has made peace with Iran, the axis is about to topple. #BRICS+ will end the #EmpireOfLies

Posted by: ZimInSeattle | Mar 24 2023 22:31 utc | 94

US and her European satrapies are truly the empire of tyrannies. No other world can describe this self serving global evil.

Posted by: Kooshy | Mar 24 2023 22:47 utc | 95

Jmaas | Mar 24 2023 14:04 utc | 22
I wasn't aware that the US and UK ruling classes were advocating uterine implantation champ. So your non-sequitur is not only wrong but inappropriate. Hugely irrelevant swing and a miss. The Axis of Stupidity appears to be alive and well.

Posted by: Paul McGrory | Mar 24 2023 23:10 utc | 96

I nominate the Scorpions "China White" as the song for this thread since it tells us "Evil rules the world" in 1982 and there's a real need to "stop the senseless wars" thus making it rather easy to determine who's the evil nation.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 24 2023 23:20 utc | 97

If only Russia is able to stand up for an entire year to full Military power of the collective western tyrannies and defeat them militarily and economically then Russia is a mighty strong junior partner to have. And in same way if Iran was able to stand alone for eight years against the full support of Iraq by western tyrannies suppling Saddam with satellite intelligence, fighter jets, precision bombs in addition to forty years of economic sanctions, then Iran is also a mighty junior partner. One can conclude is a lot better to have partners like Iran and Russia rather than incompetent partners that left Iraq and Afghanistan with their tails between their legs.

Posted by: Kooshy | Mar 24 2023 23:24 utc | 98

@suzan #10
I essentially agree with you. But the bombing of the Chinese embassy was about China gathering intelligence about NATO (read: USA) military hardware and weapons. When the U.S. discovered that their destroyed equipment/technology was being sent back to China for analysis and reverse engineering, they bombed the embassy to stop that.
Fast forward to March 2023. There was a lot of speculation about Xi's trip to Moscow. One western fake analysis was that Russia is running out of hardware - a fake story that the MSM has been repeating since June 2022.
And Putin did not go to Beijing, hat in hand. Xi went to Moscow, because he was the petitioner.
The trip was about the Chinese obtaining weapons intel.
Xi can see the war clouds on the horizon. He also does not trust the competence and abilities of his own PLA and military-industrial complex, which is about as corrupt as NATO (no telling which is more corrupt, but Xi is only worried about his side).
Xi was in Moscow to arrange for some Chinese weaponry and munitions to be tested in the biggest conflict zone right now, in Ukraine. There are probably a lot of issues involved that can only be cleared by the heads of state. What does China supply, how do they need it tested, does China provide some training, tech support, knowledgeable personnel, what does China need to see in the test, how does the feedback mechanism work...and the RF wants to make sure this doesn't interfere with their own plans, can the RF get a glimpse into the nuts and bolts of these Chinese military secrets, and so on. Some touchy areas.
Washington tried to scare Xi with their 'China will be sanctioned if they supply arms'. But Xi needs to know what his resources really are when the U.S. threatens.

Posted by: Richard Whitney | Mar 24 2023 23:31 utc | 99

I nominate the Scorpions "China White" as the song for this thread since it tells us "Evil rules the world"

Do you know what China White is?
I'm sure the Scorpions do.

Posted by: Duncan Idaho | Mar 24 2023 23:42 utc | 100

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