International Campaign Is Criminalizing Criticism of Israel as ‘Antisemitism’

Truth is hate to those who hate the truth.

 

Delegates at the 2009 Inter-Parliamentary Coalition for Combating Antisemitism convention in London. The organization issued a declaration calling on governments to use an Israel-centric definition of antisemitism and to outlaw and prosecute such “antisemitism.”

Delegates at the 2009 Inter-Parliamentary Coalition for Combating Antisemitism convention in London. The organization issued a declaration calling on governments to use an Israel-centric definition of antisemitism and to outlaw and prosecute such “antisemitism.”

For two decades, some Israeli officials and Israel partisans have worked to embed a new, Israel-focused definition of antisemitism in institutions around the world, from international bodies and national governments to small college campuses in heartland America. This effort is now snowballing rapidly. As a result, advocacy for Palestinian rights is well on the way to being curtailed and even criminalized as “hate.”

As the world has witnessed the oppression and ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, many people have risen in protest. In response, the Israeli government and certain of its advocates have conducted a campaign to crack down on this activism, running roughshod over civil liberties (and the English language) in the process.

The mechanism of this crackdown is the redefinition of “antisemitism”[1] to include criticism of Israel, and the insertion of this definition into the bodies of law of various countries.

Where most people would consider “antisemitism” to mean bigotry against Jewish people (and rightly consider it abhorrent), for two decades a campaign has been underway to replace that definition with an Israel-centric definition. That definition can then be used to block speech and activism in support of Palestinian human rights as “hate.” Various groups are applying this definition in law enforcement evaluations of possible crimes.

Proponents of this Israel-centric definition have promoted it step by step in various arenas, from the U.S. State Department and European governments to local governments around the U.S. and universities.

While this effort has taken place over the last two decades, it is snowballing rapidly at this time. The definition is increasingly being used to curtail free speech and academic freedom, as well as political activism.

Furthermore, such politicizing of an important word may reduce its effectiveness when real antisemitism occurs, doing a disservice to victims of true bigotry.

As of this writing, the U.S. Congress has endorsed the distorted definition, the governments of the UK and Austria have officially adopted it (in December and April, respectively), various U.S. State legislatures are considering it, and numerous universities are using it to delineate permissible discourse. Many representatives and heads of other states around the world have embraced the new meaning, even if they have yet to officially implement it.

This article will examine the often interconnected, incremental actions that got us where we are, the current state of affairs, and the public relations and lobbying efforts that are promoting this twisting of the definition of “antisemitism” — often under cover of misleadingly named “anti-racism” movements.

Claims of “Antisemitism” Used to Silence Support for Palestinians

For many years, numerous respected organizations have documented Israeli violations of Palestinian human rights, including killing of Palestinian civilians, abuse of Palestinian children, torture of Palestinian prisoners, confiscation of Palestinian land, and other cases of systematic violence and oppression. Detailed reports have been compiled by Defense for Children International, the International Red Cross, Amnesty International, Foreign Service Journal, Physicians for Human rights, Christian Aid, Human Rights Watch, the National Lawyers Guild, Israel’s Public Committee Against Torture, Israel’s B’Tselem and others.

Israel long claimed that its 1948 creation was on “a land without a people for a people without a land,” and many people may still believe this founding myth. The fact is, however, that the land was originally inhabited by an indigenous population that was approximately 80 percent Muslim, 15 percent Christian, and a little under 5 percent Jewish. The Jewish State of Israel was created through the ejection of approximately three-quarters of a million people.

Over the decades since Israel’s founding in 1948, accusations of antisemitism have been leveled against many people who criticized Israeli actions. Indeed, the accusation was used effectively to silence very prominent critics.[2]

However, for most of that time, the meaning of the term itself was not in question. The standard definition was, in Google’s terms, “hostility to or prejudice against Jews.”[3]

Around the turn of this century, though, certain advocates began promoting official and even legal definitions of antisemitism that included various kinds of criticism of Israel.

Conflating Criticism of Israel with Antisemitism

Natan Sharansky, Israeli minister, in 2003: “The State of Israel has decided to take the gloves off and implement a coordinated counteroffensive against anti-Semitism.” Sharansky’s formulation formed the basis for the new Israel-centric definitions adopted around the world.
Natan Sharansky, Israeli minister, in 2003: “The State of Israel has decided to take the gloves off and implement a coordinated counteroffensive against anti-Semitism.” Sharansky’s formulation formed the basis for the new Israel-centric definitions adopted around the world.

Unsurprisingly, the new definitions appear to have originated from within the Israeli government, or at least with an Israeli government official.

The definitions adhere to a pattern set by a man named Natan Sharansky, who was Israel’s Minister for Jerusalem and Diaspora Affairs and chair of the Jewish Agency for Israel. Sharansky founded a Global Forum against Anti-Semitism in 2003, stating: “The State of Israel has decided to take the gloves off and implement a coordinated counteroffensive against anti-Semitism.”

But Sharansky apparently didn’t mean a counteroffensive against just anti-Jewish bigotry, but an offensive against criticism of Israel. The following year he wrote a position paper that declared: “Whereas classical anti-Semitism is aimed at the Jewish people or the Jewish religion, ‘new anti-Semitism’ is aimed at the Jewish state.”

Sharansky’s paper laid out what he called the “3-D Test of Anti-Semitism.” Sharansky applied the term “antisemitic” to criticism of Israel in three cases. First, he argued that statements that “demonize” Israel are antisemitic — by being, in his mind, unfairly harsh. (Some of those allegedly guilty of “demonizing” Israel are Jimmy Carter, Desmond Tutu, Alice Walker, Human Rights Watch, Swedish Prime Minister Olof Palme, French President François Mitterrand, and others.)

Second, Sharansky declared that it’s antisemitic to apply a “double standard” to Israel — in other words, to criticize Israel for actions that other states may also take. However, if one could never criticize, protest or boycott abuses without calling out every single other similar abuse, no one would ever be able to exercise political dissent at all.

Finally, Sharansky said it’s antisemitic to “delegitimize” Israel, or dispute its “right to exist” (a standard Israeli talking point for many years). In fact, insisting Israel has the “right” to exist amounts to saying it had the right to expel Muslim and Christian Palestinians in order to found a religiously exclusive state. (See “What ‘Israel’s right to exist’ means to Palestinians,” by John Whitbeck, published in the Christian Science Monitor.)[4]

Sharansky’s outline provided the pattern for a European agency to create a new definition of antisemitism the next year, 2005 — a definition that would then be adopted by a succession of organizations and governments, including the U.S. State Department.

There is a back story to how this all came about.

Jean Kahn (R) with French President Francois Mitterand. Kahn initiated the creation of the European Monitoring Centre, which released an Israel-centric “working” definition of antisemitism.
Jean Kahn (R) with French President Francois Mitterand. Kahn initiated the creation of the European Monitoring Centre, which released an Israel-centric “working” definition of antisemitism.

This European agency itself was founded and run by a man with important connections to Israel. It was called “The European Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia,” under the Council of the European Union. A Frenchman named Jean Kahn had convinced European heads of state to create it in 1997.

Kahn had been a President of the European Jewish Congress, elected in a plenary session in Israel, and said the Congress “would demonstrate its solidarity with Israel” and that he hoped European countries would “coordinate their legislation outlawing racism, anti-Semitism or any form of exclusion.”

Kahn was chairman of the Monitoring Centre’s management board and called the “personification” of the agency. Within three years, the Centre issued a position paper calling for the definition of anti-Semitic offenses to be “improved.”

A few years later, Israeli professor Dina Porat took up the effort to create a new definition. Working with her were Kenneth Stern and Rabbi Andrew “Andy” Baker of the American Jewish Committee. Stern reports that when the Monitoring Centre’s then head, Beate Winkler, had failed to deliver the desired definition, Andy Baker “smartly developed a working relationship with her.” Stern and others[5] then created a draft for the Monitoring Centre to use.

Israeli Dina Porat, Kenneth Stern, Rabbi Andrew Baker worked to draft what became the European Monitoring Centre definition of antisemitism.
Israeli Dina Porat, Kenneth Stern, Rabbi Andrew Baker worked to draft what became the European Monitoring Centre definition of antisemitism.

In 2005 the agency issued its “Working Definition of Anti-Semitism,” largely based on that draft. It included an array of negative statements about Israel as examples of antisemitic offenses. While standard dictionary definitions of antisemitism didn’t even mention Israel, fully half of the newly devised Monitoring Centre definition referred to Israel.

Once the Monitoring Centre had created its expanded definition, certain Israel partisans used it to promote similar definitions elsewhere. And while the Monitoring Centre itself continued to term it only a “working” definition and its replacement organization eventually withdrew the definition, in other countries and agencies the expanded definition became official.

In addition, quite frighteningly, proponents pushed successfully to begin applying the Israel-centric definition to law enforcement.

In the United States

The same year Sharansky created his “3-D” antisemitism test — a year after he founded the Global Forum against Anti-Semitism — the U.S. Congress passed a law establishing exceptional government monitoring of antisemitism. The law created a special State Department envoy and office for this monitoring, over objections of the State Department itself.

The law, called the “Global Anti-Semitism Review Act,” included a line that subverted its meaning by enshrining a new definition of antisemitism aligned with Sharansky’s: “Anti-Semitism has at times taken the form of vilification of Zionism, the Jewish national movement, and incitement against Israel.”

The bill was introduced in April 2004. That June, a Congressional hearing was conducted about how to combat antisemitism. A major witness was Israeli minister Sharansky. In his testimony Sharansky proposed his “3-D” Israel-connected definition for anti-Semitism.[6]

State Department officials objected to the proposed legislation, saying the new office was unnecessary and would be a “bureaucratic nuisance” that would actually hinder the Department’s ongoing work. A State Department press release opposing the new office described the many actions that State was already taking against antisemitism.

Despite this opposition, the Senate bill acquired 24 cosponsors representing both parties, including Hillary Clinton, John Kerry, Diane Feinstein, Russ Feingold, Sam Brownback, Saxby Chambliss and Ted Stevens. Similar bills (here and here) were introduced in the House of Representatives, acquiring 35 cosponsors, again including both Republican and Democratic leaders. The legislation passed easily and quickly became law.

Gregg Rickman, first U.S. antisemitism envoy, later worked for AIPAC.
Gregg Rickman, first U.S. antisemitism envoy, later worked for AIPAC.

The first Special Envoy, Gregg Rickman, endorsed the European Monitoring Centre’s Working Definition in 2008. Rickman’s report called it a “useful framework” for identifying and understanding antisemitism. After Rickman left the State Department, he went to work for the American Israel Political Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the major Israel advocacy organization that lobbies Congress.

The next Special Envoy, Hannah Rosenthal, took this campaign a major step forward: In 2010 the office officially adopted the European Monitoring Centre’s definition.

Rosenthal was extremely proud of having achieved this “breakthrough” definition. She began making use of it quickly, establishing a 90-minute course on the new antisemitism at the Foreign Service Institute, the training school for diplomats.

“We have now a definition we can train people on,” she told the Times of Israel, “and we’ve been very aggressive in training foreign service officers.”

Hannah Rosenthal adopted the “breakthrough” Israel related definition and promptly used it in training U.S. diplomats.
Hannah Rosenthal adopted the “breakthrough” Israel related definition and promptly used it in training U.S. diplomats.

Rosenthal announced that with the new definition including criticism of Israel, their reporting on antisemitism improved “300 percent,” even though, she said, that didn’t mean that antisemitism had actually increased in all the countries monitored.

The gloves were off. Now fully half of the official U.S. State Department definition of antisemitism had gone beyond the normal meaning of the word to focus on Israel.

Applying the New Definition to U.S. Citizens

The State Department uses the new definition to monitor activities overseas. But once the State Department definition was in place, efforts began to use it to crack down on political and academic discourse and activism within the U.S.

This past December (2016) the U.S. Senate passed a law to apply the State Department’s definition (i.e. the Sharansky-Stern-Rosenthal definition) of antisemitism to the Education Department, for use in investigating reports of religiously motivated campus crimes.

A companion bill for the House is supported by AIPAC, the ADL, the Jewish Federations of North America and the Simon Wiesenthal Center.

South Carolina’s House of Representatives recently passed legislation under which the State Department’s definition “would be used in probes of possible anti-Semitism at state colleges and universities.” The state senate will consider this in 2018. If passed, it will mean that the state will now probe criticism of Israel on state campuses.

Similar bills are being considered in Virginia and Tennessee but as of now are tabled. [The Virginia bill was tabled and reportedly will not be considered in 2017. Consideration of the Tennessee bill has also been delayed, but efforts to pass it continue.]

Such efforts are also ongoing in California. In December Democrat Brad Sherman called on the California Secretary of Education to “expand its definition to include certain forms of anti-Israel behavior.” Pro-Israel organizations such as the Amcha Initiative have also been pushing the state legislature for several years to officially adopt the State Department definition. So far these have been defeated but continue to be promoted.

U.S. Campuses

A parallel effort has been occurring on U.S. campuses. In 2003 Sharansky said that college campuses were “one of the most important battlefields” for Israel.

In 2015 University of California President Janet Napolitano (head of 10 campuses) publicly supported adopting the state department definition, after 57 rabbis sent a letter to her and the University Board of Regents promoting the definition.

Student councils or other groups at various universities have passed resolutions adopting the State Department definition, which can then be used to block campus events about Palestine.

An AIPAC official announced at the 2010 convention: “We’re going to make certain that pro-Israel students take over the student government. That is how AIPAC operates in our nation’s capitol. This is how AIPAC must operate on our nation’s campuses.”
An AIPAC official announced at the 2010 convention: “We’re going to make certain that pro-Israel students take over the student government. That is how AIPAC operates in our nation’s capitol. This is how AIPAC must operate on our nation’s campuses.”

An ongoing campaign to ensure Israel partisans become influential in student government has supported these efforts. This campaign was announced by an AIPAC leader in 2010: “We’re going to make certain that pro-Israel students take over the student government,” he said. “That is how AIPAC operates in our nation’s capitol. This is how AIPAC must operate on our nation’s campuses.” (Video here.)

Resolutions referencing the Israel-centric definitions have now been passed by student governments at UC Santa Barbara, UCLA, East Carolina University, Indiana University, Ohio’s Capital University, Ohio’s Kent State, Orange County’s Chapman University, San Diego State University, and other campuses around the country.[7]

An example of these resolutions is the 2015 bill at Indiana University. The resolution denounced anti-Semitism “as defined by the United States State Department” and stated that the student government would not fund antisemitic activities or activities that “undermine the right of the Jewish people to self-determination.” It also said that student government executives and Congress members would undergo diversity training on anti-Semitism.

According to the student newspaper, the bill was written by Rebekah Molasky, a fellow with the international pro-Israel organization Stand With Us. After the resolution was passed, “the bill’s sponsors and outside supporters hugged and high-fived before gathering in the hallway to take a picture to commemorate the moment.”

As evidenced above, such resolutions can now be used to censor student events. The UC San Diego resolution largely replicated the Indiana format, announcing that the student government will not support activities that “promote anti-Semitism” under the new definition, including “denying Israel the right to exist.” Stand With Us applauded the resolution.

In 2012, an organization called the Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under the Law was founded and immediately began promoting the new definition. Within a year it launched an initiative to establish student chapters at law schools throughout the U.S. to advance “the organization’s mandate to combat campus anti-Semitism through legal means.” The Center helped push the South Carolina legislation. It is one of numerous organizations promoting the new definition.

(Incidentally, former Supreme Court Justice Brandeis was a leader in the world Zionist movement and worked in public and covert ways to promote it — see here.)

“Thought Policing”

A number of analysts have pointed out some of the many significant flaws with such legislation.

Anthony L. Fisher at Reason.com writes of Congress’s December law applying the State Department definition to the Education Department: “It gives the federal government the authority to investigate ideas, thoughts, and political positions as violations of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.”

Fisher continues: “By specifically using the broad language of a 2010 State Department memo attempting to define anti-Semitism, the Senate bill wades into thought policing.”

Attorney Liz Jackson wrote in an opinion piece in the Los Angeles Times: “Anyone who values the constitutional right to express political dissent should worry about this development.”

NY Times columnist Bret Stephens says Jewish Americans should “do all we can to assure the survival of the Jewish State.”
NY Times columnist Bret Stephens says Jewish Americans should “do all we can to assure the survival of the Jewish State.”

On the other side of the debate is New York Times columnist Bret Stephens, formerly Wall Street Journal deputy editorial page editor and before that editor of an Israeli newspaper. Stephens, extremely hawkish on Israel, writes and speaks fervently against the movement to boycott Israel (BDS) and what he says is antisemitism on US campuses and elsewhere. In a Wall Street Journal editorial, he claimed that “anti-Semitism is the disease of the Arab world.”

In 2014 Stephens spoke at the Tikvah Fund, a philanthropic foundation committed to supporting the “Jewish people and the Jewish State,” opining that it would be a scandal if Jewish people failed “to do all we can to assure the survival of the Jewish State.”

U.S. and European Lawmakers Pressure Governments to Ban Criticism of Israel

During all this time, parallel efforts to promote the new definition continued in Europe.

In 2009 an organization called the Inter-parliamentary Coalition for Combating Antisemitism (ICCA) took up the effort to spread the expanded definition. The group says it brings together parliamentarians from “around the world” to fight antisemitism and lists a steering committee of six European and U.S. legislators.

UK politician (and later Prime Minister) David Cameron signed the Inter-Parliamentary Coalition statement calling on governments to outlaw certain forms of criticism of Israel, including calls to boycott Israel; to regulate criticism of Israel in the media; to monitor criticism of Israel online and elsewhere; and to prosecute critics of Israel under “hate crimes” legislation.
UK politician (and later Prime Minister) David Cameron signed the Inter-Parliamentary Coalition statement calling on governments to outlaw certain forms of criticism of Israel, including calls to boycott Israel; to regulate criticism of Israel in the media; to monitor criticism of Israel online and elsewhere; and to prosecute critics of Israel under “hate crimes” legislation.

The group held a conference in London in 2009 at which it issued a “London Declaration on Combating Antisemitism,” which was signed by then British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and other heads of state and legislators. This declaration called on governments to use the European Monitoring Centre’s definition and to outlaw and prosecute such “antisemitism.”

It was couched in “anti-racism” terms, but when we look at the declaration’s recommendations combined with its definition of antisemitism, one thing becomes clear: In the declaration, numerous lawmakers of the Western world called on world governments to restrict political dissent.

Specifically, they called on governments to outlaw certain forms of criticism of Israel, including calls to boycott Israel; to regulate criticism of Israel in the media; to monitor criticism of Israel online and elsewhere; and to prosecute critics of Israel under “hate crimes” legislation.

Among numerous other demands, the lawmakers declared that governments:

  • “must expand the use of the EUMC [Monitoring Centre] ‘Working Definition of antisemitism’” including “as a basis for training material for use by Criminal Justice Agencies;”
  • should “isolate political actors” who “target the State of Israel;”
  • “should legislate ‘incitement to hatred’ offences and empower law enforcement agencies to convict;”
  • “should … establish inquiry scrutiny panels;”
  • “should utilise the EUMC [Monitoring Centre] ‘Working Definition of antisemitism’ to inform media standards;”
  • “should take appropriate and necessary action to prevent the broadcast of antisemitic programmes on satellite television channels, and to apply pressure on the host broadcast nation to take action to prevent the transmission of antisemitic programmes” (keeping in mind here that the declaration’s definition of “antisemitic” includes various criticism of Israel);
  • “should use domestic ‘hate crime’, ‘incitement to hatred’ and other legislation … to prosecute ‘Hate on the Internet’ where racist and antisemitic content is hosted, published and written” (again keeping in mind what is defined as “antisemitic”);
  • and that “education authorities should … protect students and staff from illegal antisemitic discourse and a hostile environment in whatever form it takes including calls for boycotts.”

In 2015 the European Commission created a special position to coordinate work on combating antisemitism and appointed German national Katharina von Schnurbein to the post. Schnurbein proceeded to promote the use of the Israel-centric definition.[8]

UK and Austria Adopt Definition

In December 2016, the UK announced it would formally adopt the Israel-centric definition. It was quickly followed by Austria, which adopted the definition in April 2017. The Austrian justice minister had previously announced that the new definition would be used in the training of new judges and prosecutors.

British Prime Minister Theresa May announced the adoption of the Israel-centric definition at a Conservative Friends of Israel event.
British Prime Minister Theresa May announced the adoption of the Israel-centric definition at a Conservative Friends of Israel event.

UK Prime Minister Theresa May made the announcement during a talk before 800 guests at the Conservative Friends of Israel’s annual lunch.

UPI reported: “The British police are already using this definition[9], which can now also be used by other groups, such as municipal councils and universities. The definition is not a law, but provides a formal interpretation of an illegal act that can serve as a guideline for criminal proceedings.” Shortly afterward the UK’s higher education minister sent a letter informing universities that the government had adopted the IHRA definition and directing them to utilize it.

(The London council quickly followed suit with its own adoption of the definition, and other cities have now done the same. In May the Israel-Britain Alliance (IBA) began asking candidates for Parliament to sign a pledge that they would support the new definition.)

A number of groups objected to the definition, arguing that the definition “deliberately equates criticism of Israel with hatred of Jews.”

Opponents said it was “vigorously promoted by pro-Israel lobbyists to local authorities, universities, Labour movement organisations and other public bodies.”

They stated that after its adoption there had been “an increase in bannings and restrictions imposed on pro-Palestinian activities, especially on campuses.” Some of the cancellations cited the IHRA definition. Oxford Professor Stephen Sedley wrote in the London Review of Books that the IHRA definition gives “respectability and encouragement to forms of intolerance which are themselves contrary to law.”

Professor Jonathan Rosenhead, recipient of the President’s Medal of the British Operational Research Society and Chair of the British Committee for the Universities of Palestine, said there were many examples of the definition creating a “chilling effect” on institutions’ willingness to permit lawful political activity, “even when the definition was not specifically cited.”

AJC’s Rabbi Andrew “Andy” Baker helped create and disseminate the new definition throughout Europe, Eurasia, the U.S., and Canada.
AJC’s Rabbi Andrew “Andy” Baker helped create and disseminate the new definition throughout Europe, Eurasia, the U.S., and Canada.

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), which represents all of Europe, Eurasia, the U.S., and Canada — a billion people — was also pushed to adopt the definition at its December 2016 conference.

The American Jewish Committee, which has offices in Berlin, Brussels, Paris, Rome, and Warsaw, reported that it had “met with senior European government officials to encourage OSCE adoption of the definition.” However, adoption of the definition has so far been blocked by one member: Russia.

AJC leader Rabbi Andrew Baker wrote that the AJC would now work “to foster its greater use by the individual states of the OSCE and members of the European Union.”

Inter-Parliamentary Coalition’s American Representatives

Two American Congressmen are among the six-member steering committee of the Inter-parliamentary Coalition for Combating Antisemitism (CCA).

One is Florida Congressman Ted Deutch. Deutch’s Congressional website highlights his support for Israel as well as his work against antisemitism.

Florida Congressman Ted Deutch has pushed the use of the Israel-centric definition to curtail academic freedom and campus political dissent within the United States. Deutch’s website declares him “a passionate supporter of Israel whose advocacy for a strong U.S.-Israel relationship stretches back to his youth.”
Florida Congressman Ted Deutch has pushed the use of the Israel-centric definition to curtail academic freedom and campus political dissent within the United States. Deutch’s website declares him “a passionate supporter of Israel whose advocacy for a strong U.S.-Israel relationship stretches back to his youth.”

According to the site, Deutch “works closely with his colleagues in the House and Senate to… pass resolutions strongly opposing manifestations of anti-Semitism at home in South Florida, across the United States, and around the world.”

The website reports: “Congressman Ted Deutch is a passionate supporter of Israel whose advocacy for a strong U.S.-Israel relationship stretches back to his youth. Ted spent his summers at Zionist summer camp, worked as a student activist in high school and college, and served in leadership roles on several local and national Jewish organizations throughout his professional career. Today, Ted serves as Ranking Member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee’s influential Middle East and North Africa Subcommittee, where he continues to champion Israel’s security during a time of great volatility in the Middle East.”

Deutch is also a member of the Subcommittee on Europe, Eurasia, and Emerging Threats. His ICCA bio announces that he plans to use this position “to continue to publicly condemn anti-Semitism.”

Deutch receives considerable funding from the pro-Israel lobby.

In March Deutch led a bipartisan letter to Trump “Urging Forceful Action on Anti-Semitism.” It demanded ‘a comprehensive, inter-agency strategy that called for the Justice Department to investigate “anti-Semitic crimes” and “ensure the perpetrators are brought to justice.”

Deutch was one of two Congresspeople who introduced the December law to apply the State Department definition to education.

New Jersey Congressman Chris Smith, member of the Inter-Parliamentary Coalition, brought Sharansky to testify before Congress about his new definition.
New Jersey Congressman Chris Smith, member of the Inter-Parliamentary Coalition, brought Sharansky to testify before Congress about his new definition.

The other U.S. Congressman on the steering committee of the ICCA is Republican Chris Smith of New Jersey. Smith is also a senior member on the House Foreign Affairs Committee. According to the website Open Secrets, a large proportion of his campaign donations are also from pro-Israel sources.

Natan Sharansky twice testified at hearings Smith chaired. In a speech at an event honoring Smith for his work against antisemitism, Smith remembered that Sharansky had “proposed what he called a simple test to help us distinguish legitimate criticism of Israel from anti-Semitism. He called it the three Ds: Demonization, double standard, and de-legitimization.”

Spreading the New Definition Under Cover of “Anti-Racism” Movement

UK universities have seen repression of pro-Palestinian activism on an epic scale. In 2007 the UK’s National Union of Students (NUS) adopted the new antisemitism definition at its national conference, when pro-Israel students introduced a motion entitled “AntiRacism: Challenging Racism on Campus and in Our Communities.” Some student unions at various UK universities then did the same.

This was a particularly ironic name for a pro-Israel motion, given that many people around the world consider Israel’s founding ideology, political Zionism, racist. In fact, in 1975 the UN General Assembly specifically passed a resolution that “Zionism is a form of racism.”

(The resolution was revoked In 1991, but not because the world body had changed its mind. In that year President Bush was pushing for the Madrid Peace Conference, which he hoped would end the “Arab-Israeli” conflict. When Israel said it would only participate in the conference if the UN revoked the resolution, the U.S. pressured member states to do just this.)

Through the years numerous entities have affirmed that Zionism is a type of racism, including conferences in South Africa and a recent UN commission which reported that Israel was practicing apartheid. (This report was then removed by the UN Director General, after Israeli and U.S. pressure.)

The UK student actions exemplify a trend that has pervaded this movement since the beginning: Efforts to shut down pro-Palestinian activism, curtail free speech and police thought both online and off are repeatedly packaged as “anti-racism” and sometimes “anti-fascism.”[10]

Campaign for New Definition Overcomes Hiccups

Taken together, these steps towards redefining “antisemitism” to include criticism of Israel, and then ban it, are effectively (and increasingly rapidly) producing significant results in terms of actual regulation and even law enforcement. Nevertheless, there apparently has been some resistance to the change.

In 2013, the successor organization to the European Monitoring Centre (called the European Fundamental Rights Agency) quietly dropped the working definition from its website. Without any public announcement, the definition was simply no longer on its site. When questioned about this, the agency’s director simply said that the organization had “no mandate to develop its own definitions.”

Proponents of the definition were outraged. Shimon Samuels of the Simon Wiesenthal Center complained that the agency’s “disowning of its own definition is astounding” and that “those who fight antisemitism have lost an important weapon.” (The Wiesenthal Center is a global organization that declares it “stands with Israel” with offices in Los Angeles, New York, Toronto, Miami, Chicago, Paris, Buenos Aires, and Jerusalem.)

However, the fact that the Monitoring Centre had never officially adopted the definition, and that its successor organization now had apparently discarded it, seems to have been ignored by those who had adopted it.

The U.S. State Department continues to use the discarded version. The only difference is that the PDF that gave its Monitoring Centre origins has been removed from State’s website.

The World Jewish Congress convention 2014, chaired by David de Rothschild, urged “all countries to adopt a binding definition of anti-Semitic crimes” based on the Israel-centric definition.
The World Jewish Congress convention 2014, chaired by David de Rothschild, urged “all countries to adopt a binding definition of anti-Semitic crimes” based on the Israel-centric definition.

The following year, the World Jewish Congress, which represents Jewish umbrella bodies in 100 countries, called on “all countries to adopt a binding definition of anti-Semitic crimes based on the Working Definition of Anti-Semitism developed by the former European Union Monitoring Commission (EUMC) and used in a number of states’ law enforcement agencies.”

IHRA Picks Up the Ball

Other groups stepped into the vacuum and kept the definition alive. In 2016 The International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) adopted the definition.

The IHRA consists of 31 Member Countries, ten Observer Countries, and seven international partner organizations. Its chair announced that the IHRA’s goal was to inspire “other international fora” to also adopt “a legally binding working definition.” It’s working: Britain and Austria almost immediately followed suit.

The U.S. Brandeis Center applauded the move, saying that “because the IHRA has adopted it, the definition has now officially been given the international status that it was previously lacking.”

The Brandeis Center reported that this was the “culmination of a process initiated by Mark Weitzman, Director of Government Affairs at the Simon Wiesenthal Center, two years ago, with help from others including Ira Forman and Nicholas Dean of the U.S. Department of State.”

Ira Forman, antisemitism envoy under Obama and formerly of AIPAC, played a pivotal role in the IHRA adoption of the new definition.
Ira Forman, antisemitism envoy under Obama and formerly of AIPAC, played a pivotal role in the IHRA adoption of the new definition.

Forman was the State Department Special Anti-Semitism Envoy under Obama, reportedly led Obama’s reelection campaign in the Jewish community, had worked for Bill Clinton, and had served as Political Director and Legislative Liaison for AIPAC, the pro-Israel lobbying organization. Nicholas Dean had been the State Department Special Envoy for the Holocaust.

The New York Jewish Week reported that Forman and Dean “played a pivotal role in diplomatic efforts that led to the recent adoption by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance of a Working Definition of Anti-Semitism.”

“This is the first-ever formal international definition of anti-Semitism, and a potentially crucial tool for forcing governments and international agencies to confront and take action against it,” the article continued.

Pressure On State Department to Continue Extra Monitoring

Among much budget slashing proposed by President Donald Trump were cuts to the State Department that would have ended funding for the antisemitism monitoring office and special envoy (though State Department monitoring of antisemitism would continue even after the cuts).

Various organizations are lobbying to keep the office and envoy, including the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), a U.S. organization whose mission is to “stop the defamation of the Jewish people” but which in effect seems to serve as an American extension of the most right-wing elements of Israel’s government. It has a long and infamous history of attacking critics of Israeli policy as “antisemites” and also uses an Israel-centric definition of antisemitism.

The ADL and allies pointed to a rash of bomb threats against Jewish institutions to strengthen their argument that this exceptional office must be funded. A letter with over a hundred signatories was sent to Trump demanding that he keep the dedicated State Department position, a bipartisan letter in support of retaining that special monitor was circulated in Congress, and over 100 Holocaust memorial groups and scholars urged Trump to keep the office.

As this political fight has raged, the ADL, which has a budget of over $56 million, sent out press releases to national and local media around the country reporting that antisemitic incidents have soared. The release was repeated almost verbatim in numerous national media and in individual states (as a random example, a Massachusetts headline declared: “Report: Anti-Semitism on the rise in Massachusetts.”)

However, it is impossible to know how many of the antisemitic incidents reported by the ADL were actually related to criticism of Israel, because the ADL didn’t release the data on which these results were based.

Israeli man arrested for over 2,000 bomb threats.
Israeli man arrested for over 2,000 bomb threats.

In addition, the ADL’s reported spike includes a spate of threats called in to Jewish organizations, schools and community centers that, thankfully, were hoaxes. The vast majority of threats (reportedly to over 2,000 institutions) apparently were perpetrated by an 18-year-old Jewish Israeli who reportedly suffers from medical and mental problems. (This alleged perpetrator is also accused of trying to extort a US Senator, threatening the children of a US official, and a range of other crimes.)

Another individual, an American in the U.S., apparently perpetrated eight hoax bomb threats in a bizarre campaign to get his former girlfriend in trouble.

A Jewish News Service article says the threats by the Israeli teen made up a significant percentage of the ADL’s spike and reported: “The Anti-Defamation League’s (ADL) decision to count an Israeli teenager’s alleged recent bomb hoaxes as ‘anti-Semitic incidents’ is prompting criticism from some Jewish community officials.”

An ADL official admitted that the audit is an approximation, saying “the science on it is currently being written.” A regional ADL director said that “this is not a poll or a scientific study,” but rather “an effort to get a sense of ‘what’s going on in people’s hearts.’”

Regarding hard data, the report said that anti-Semitic assaults across the nation had “decreased by about 36 percent.”

The ADL blames various groups for antisemitism, pointing the finger at people of color with claims that Hispanic Americans and African Americans are “the most anti-Semitic cohorts,” at “white supremacists” and at Trump’s election — but not at the Israeli teen responsible for 2,000+ hoax threats that terrorized Jewish institutions, nor at its own distorted, Israel-connected definition.[11]

Claims of increased antisemitism are cited repeatedly in calls for the U.S. government to maintain funding for the special State Department monitoring.

Former US Ambassador to UN Samantha Power tweeted that the entire Trump administration should focus on antisemitism.
Former US Ambassador to UN Samantha Power tweeted that the entire Trump administration should focus on antisemitism.

Former Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power and two Democratic congressional representatives, Reps. Nita Lowey of New York and Deutch of Florida, are among those demanding that Trump appoint a new antisemitism monitor and maintain this office at full strength, even while he cuts other federal spending.

Power tweeted: “Anti-semitism is surging in world. Entire Trump admin needs to focus on it & envoy position must be kept.”

Lowey demanded: “The president must show he takes the rise of anti-Semitism seriously by immediately appointing a special envoy to monitor and combat anti-Semitism and fully staffing the Special Envoy’s office.”

In a May 2017 speech, World Jewish Congress leader Ronald Lauder said, “Being anti-Israel is being anti-Semitic.” He announced that the congress “is creating a new communications department, or what you might call Hasborah” to counter this new “antisemitism.”

Dissenting Views

Many Jewish writers and activists dispute Lauder’s contention and oppose the campaign to conflate antisemitism with criticism of Israel. An article in Israel’s Ha’aretz newspaper points out that “were anti-Zionism a cover for the abuse of individual Jews, individual Jews would not join anti-Zionist groups. Yet many do. Jewish students are well represented in anti-Zionist groups like Students for Justice in Palestine.”

Rabbi Ahron Cohen of Naturei Kartei (“Guardians of the Faith”) writes that “Judaism and Zionism are incompatible and mutually exclusive.” Cohen states that antisemitism is “an illogical bigotry. Anti-Zionism, however, is a perfectly logical opposition, based on very sound reasoning, to a particular idea and aim.”

Cohen argues: “According to the Torah and Jewish faith, the present Palestinian Arab claim to rule in Palestine is right and just. The Zionist claim is wrong and criminal. Our attitude to Israel is that the whole concept is flawed and illegitimate. So anti-Zionism is certainly not anti-Semitism.”

Antisemitism?

Recently Israel’s Ha’aretz newspaper published a column entitled, “An Israeli Soldier Shot a Palestinian in Front of Her Kids. Where’s Her Compensation?”

The article, by Israeli journalist Gideon Levy, begins: “For three months, Dia Mansur was certain his mother was dead. He was 15 years old when he saw her collapse in the living room of their home, felled by a bullet fired by an Israel Defense Forces soldier that sliced into her face, tearing it apart. He saw his mother lying on the floor, blood oozing from her mouth…”

Gaza, 2014. Israel’s invasions and shelling of Gaza killed and injured thousands of children and left multitudes homeless.
Gaza, 2014. Israel’s invasions and shelling of Gaza killed and injured thousands of children and left multitudes homeless.

Levy, citing a report by an Israeli human rights organization, writes that from September 2000 to through February 2017, “Israel killed 4,868 noncombatant Palestinian civilians, more than one-third of them (1,793) were children and adolescents below the age of 18.” (More info here.)

He continued: “Thousands of others, who were also not involved in fighting, have been wounded and permanently incapacitated.” (Photos here.)

Shifa Hospital, Gaza, 2014
Shifa Hospital, Gaza, 2014

A few weeks before that report, Ha’aretz published an article that described Israel’s month-long imprisonment of a 12-year-old Palestinian boy, one of over 200 Palestinian children taken by Israeli forces in a little over three months. The boy, accused of throwing stones against Israeli soldiers, would have been released from incarceration earlier, except that his impoverished family didn’t have enough money to pay the fine.

In the article, Israeli journalist Amira Haas reported that the boy’s father said that his son “wasn’t how he used to be before he was arrested.” “He used to joke,” the father said, “and he stopped doing that. He talked a lot, and now he is silent.”

Haas wrote that UNICEF had issued a report four years ago that Israel was “extensively and systematically abusing detained Palestinian children and youth.” Today, she reported, “The stories of physical violence, threats, painful plastic handcuffs and naked body searches remain almost identical.”

Sadly, every week there are similar stories.

Israeli soldiers arrest Palestinian boy in West Bank town of Hebron, June 20, 2014. “Human Rights Watch on Monday accused Israel of ‘abusive arrests’ of Palestinian children as young as 11 and of using threats to force them to sign confessions.” – AFP
Israeli soldiers arrest Palestinian boy in West Bank town of Hebron, June 20, 2014. “Human Rights Watch on Monday accused Israel of ‘abusive arrests’ of Palestinian children as young as 11 and of using threats to force them to sign confessions.” – AFP

To the multi-billion dollar network of lobbies advocating for conflating criticism of Israel with antisemitism, those who work to get such information to the American people – whose government gives Israel $10 million per day – are antisemitic.

Many others of all faiths and ethnicities have a different view.

Sixteen years ago I wrote: “Equating the wrongdoing of Israel with Jewishness is the deepest and most insidious form of anti-Semitism of all.”

It is ironic that it is the Israel lobby that is today doing this equating, and that it has worked to invert the very meaning of antisemitism itself. Rather than denoting only abhorrent behavior, as it once did, today the term is often officially applied to what many consider courageous actions against oppression.

More troubling, still, these lobbying groups are working to outlaw conduct that numerous people (including many Israelis and Jewish Americans) consider morally obligatory.

It seems imperative for Americans who wish for justice and peace in the Middle East, and who oppose Orwellian distortions of language and law, to speak out against this campaign – while we can.

* * *

N.B. I deeply hope that no one will exaggerate or misrepresent the information this article reveals. The actions above were taken by specific individuals and organizations. They alone are responsible for them, not an entire religious or ethnic group, most of whom quite likely have little idea that this is occurring.


Alison Weir is executive director of If Americans Knew, president of the Council for the National Interest, and author of Against Our Better Judgment: The Hidden History of How the U.S. Was Used to Create Israel.

Timeline for creating new Israel-centric definition of antisemitism

Following is a timeline of some of the key events in the creation, promotion and adoption of the Israel-focused definition of antisemitism. It provides an outline, but does not include every step of the process, all the key players, or every action.

1991 – Jean Kahn is elected president of the European Jewish Congress at its plenary session in Israel. He announces an ambitious agenda, including demonstrating solidarity with Israel and European countries coordinating legislation to outlaw antisemitism.

1997 – Kahn “convinces 15 heads of state” to create the The European Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia to focus on “racism, xenophobia and antisemitism.”

2000 – The Monitoring Centre issues a position paper calling for the definition of antisemitic offenses to be “improved.”

2003 – Israel’s minister for diaspora affairs Natan Sharansky founds the Global Forum against Anti-Semitism, stating: “The State of Israel has decided to take the gloves off and implement a coordinated counteroffensive against anti-Semitism.”

2004 – Sharansky, who is also chair of the Jewish Agency for Israel, issues a position paper that lays out the “3-D Test of Anti-Semitism:” statements that “demonize” Israel, apply a “double standard” or “delegitimize” Israel are “antisemitic.” These will form the blueprint for new definitions adopted by lobbying organizations and finally governments.

2004 – US Congress passes law establishing special office and envoy in the State Department to monitor antisemitism that includes statements about Israel under this rubric. (Sharansky is witness at Congressional hearing.)

2004 – American Jewish Committee directors Kenneth Stern and Rabbi Andrew “ Andy” Baker work with Israeli professor Dina Porat to draft a new antisemitism definition and push the Monitoring Centre to adopt it, according to Stern. Their draft drew on Sharansky’s 3 D’s.

2005 – Monitoring Centre issues a “Working Definition of Anti-Semitism” that includes Sharansky’s 3 D’s, based on Stern et al’s draft. While standard dictionary definitions of antisemitism didn’t even mention Israel, fully half of the newly devised Monitoring Centre definition referred to Israel.

2007UK’s National Union of Students (NUS) adopts the new antisemitism definition focused on Israel, after pro-Israel students introduce a motion misleadingly entitled “AntiRacism: Challenging Racism on Campus and in Our Communities.” Some student unions at various UK universities then follow suit.

2008 – The first U.S. State Department Special Envoy on antisemitism, Greg Rickman, endorses the Monitoring Centre working definition in State Department report to Congress. (Rickman later went to work for AIPAC.)

2009 – The Inter-parliamentary Coalition for Combating Antisemitism (CCA), which brings together parliamentarians from around the world, issues the London Declaration signed by then British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and others. The Declaration calls on governments to use the Monitoring Centre definition and to outlaw and prosecute such “antisemitism.” US Congressmen Ted Deutch and Chris Smith are members of the CCA’s steering committee.

2010 – Second US State Department Special Envoy on antisemitism Hanna Rosenthal officially adopts European Monitoring Centre definition; this is subsequently referred to as the State Department definition of antisemitism. Rosenthal creates course on antisemitism using this definition to train Foreign Service Officers.

2012Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under the Law is founded and immediately begins promoting the new definition. Within a year it launches an initiative to establish student chapters at law schools throughout the U.S.

2013 – Successor organization to the European Monitoring Centre (called the European Fundamental Rights Agency) quietly drops the working definition from its website. When questioned about this, the agency’s director says the organization had “no mandate to develop its own definitions.” (Groups using the definition continue to use it.)

2014 – Mark Weitzman, Director of Government Affairs at the Simon Wiesenthal Center, with help from Ira Forman and Nicholas Dean of the U.S. Department of State, initiates efforts for another agency to adopt and promote the working definition of antisemitism.

2015 – European Commission creates a special position to coordinate work on combating antisemitism, appointing German Katharina von Schnurbein to the post. Schnurbein proceeds to promote use of the Israel-centric definition.

2015 – Indiana University passes resolution denouncing “anti-Semitism as defined by the United States State Department and will not fund or participate in activities that promote anti-Semitism or that ‘undermine the right of the Jewish people to self-determination.’” University of California Santa Barbara and UCLA also pass such resolutions.

2016 – The International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA), consisting of 31 Member Countries, adopts the definition; the goal is to inspire others to also adopt “a legally binding working definition.” An analyst writes that the IHRA action is “a potentially crucial tool for forcing governments and international agencies to confront and take action.”

December 2016 – U.S. Senate passes law to apply the State Department’s definition of antisemitism to the Education Department, for use in investigating reports of religiously motivated campus crimes. Now the law defines actions connected to criticism of Israel as “religiously motivated.”

December 2016 – UK announces it will formally adopt the Israel-centric definition–the first country to do so besides Israel. UK Prime Minister Theresa May made the announcement during a talk before 800 guests at the Conservative Friends of Israel’s annual lunch.

December 2016 – Adoption of the definition by the 57-member Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), which had been heavily lobbied by the American Jewish Committee, is blocked by Russia. The AJC then says it will push for individual member states to adopt it.

March 2017 South Carolina House of Representatives passes legislation under which the State Department’s definition “would be used in probes of possible anti-Semitism at state colleges and universities.” The Senate version will be discussed in 2018. Similar bills are being considered in Virginia and Tennessee.

March – May 2017 – Resolutions adopting the Israel-centric definitions are passed by student governments at Ohio’s Capital University and Kent State, California’s San Diego State University and at other campuses around the U.S.

April 2017

  • Austria adopts the definition. (The Austrian justice minister previously announced that the new definition would be used in the training of new judges and prosecutors.)
  • The ADL, which uses Israel-centric definition of antisemitism, announces that antisemitism has risen by 86 percent in 2017, but includes questionable statistics. News organizations throughout the U.S. report the ADL claim.
  • Reports that Trump administration budget cuts might cause special antisemitism envoy position to remain vacant provokes outrage among Israel lobby groups and others. Samantha Power calls for entire Trump administration to focus on antisemitism. Soon, Trump administration says it will fill post.
  • All 100 US Senators send a letter to UN demanding it stop its actions on Israel and connects these to antisemitism.

May 2017 –

  • Israel-Britain Alliance begins asking candidates for Parliament to sign a pledge that they will support the new definition.

Endnotes

[1] I’m using the newer, unhyphenated spelling of this word, which seems to be growing in popularity. I feel it is a more appropriate spelling, since the hyphenated version suggests that it refers to all Semites, which is incorrect. The word was created in 1879 specifically to refer to anti-Jewish prejudice.

[2] Former Israeli parliament member Shulamit Aloni explained this in a 2002 interview with Amy Goodman on Democracy now. “It’s a trick. ” she said. “We always use it. When from Europe somebody is criticizing Israel, then we bring up the Holocaust. When in this country people are criticizing Israel, then they are ‘anti-Semitic’.

Aloni noted that the pro-Israel lobby in the United States “is strong, and has a lot of money.” She continued: “Ties between Israel and the American Jewish establishment are very strong … their attitude is ‘Israel, my country right or wrong.’”

“It’s very easy,” she said, “to blame people who criticize certain acts of the Israeli government as ‘anti-Semitic’ and use that claim to justify everything Israel does to the Palestinians.”

Examples abound of critics of Israel silenced in this way. One telling story is that of once-famous journalist Dorothy Thompson, who was virtually erased from history after writing about the Palestinian cause. Read about her here and here.

[3] Dictionaries all agreed on this meaning, with one exception that caused considerable outrage. This was Merriam-Webster’s mammoth unabridged dictionary, which included a second meaning: “opposition to Zionism: sympathy with opponents of the state of Israel.”

When some people discovered this extra, Israel-related meaning in 2004 and raised objections to it, there was a general outcry that the additional meaning was inaccurate and should be removed, including by New York Times columnist and linguistics arbiter Jeffrey Nunberg, who wrote that it “couldn’t be defended.”

Merriam-Webster responded by saying that the extra meaning would “probably be dropped when the company published a new unabridged version in a decade or so.” The company hasn’t published a new version yet, but it seems to have followed through with this decision. The online version of the unabridged dictionary, which says it is updated with the latest words and meanings, makes no mention of Israel or Zionism.

[4] An increasingly common Israeli talking point is the claim that it’s antisemitic to deny the Jewish people their “right to self-determination.” This is disingenuous: Self-determination is the right of people on a land to determine their own political status, not the right of some people to expel others in order to form an exclusive state on confiscated land. In reality, the principle of self-determination would have had the Muslim, Christian and Jewish residents of historic Palestine forming a government for all of them, and today would give Palestinians living under Israeli occupation the freedom to determine their own destiny.

[5] Michael Whine, Jeremy Jones, Israeli Roni Stauber, Felice Gaer, Israeli Yehuda Bauer, Michael Berenbaum and Andy Baker, and later on, AJC’s Deidre Berger, previously an NPR reporter.

[6] The other witnesses were representatives of the Orthodox Union of Jewish Congregations, American Jewish Committee, U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council, Anti-Defamation League, National Conference for Soviet Jewry, B’nai B’rith International, World Jewish Congress, Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, Simon Wiesenthal Center, Shai Franklin, and Jay Lefkowitz of Kirkland & Ellis, LLP.

[7] An organization called Students Supporting Israel (SSI) takes credit for most of these initiatives. Created in 2012 at the University of Minnesota by Israeli Ilan Sinelnikov and his sister, Valeria Chazin, SSI now has chapters on over 40 college campuses around the U.S., at least three high schools, and some campuses in Canada. In 2015 Israel’s Midwest Consulate chose SSI to receive the award for “Outstanding Pro Israel Activism.” Campus Hillels are also frequently involved.

The bill at Chapman University passed but was vetoed. Another vote will probably be proposed in in the fall.

[8] For information on additional Israel-centered campaigns, see the works of Israeli strategist Yehezkel Dror, such as his paper “Foundations of an Israeli Grand Strategy toward the European Union

[9] The AJC’s Andy Baker reported: “It is part of police-training materials in the UK.”

[10] An antifa group in France, for example, reportedly shut down a talk by an anti-Zionist intellectual.

[11] A number of analysts have also suggested that some antisemitism may at times be an (inappropriate) response to Israeli violence and oppression of Palestinians. Yale Chaplain Bruce Shipman pointed out in a letter to the New York Times that an earlier period of reported rising antisemitism in Europe paralleled “the carnage in Gaza over the last five years, not to mention the perpetually stalled peace talks and the continuing occupation of the West Bank.” Israel partisans were outraged and Shipman was soon required to resign.

 

Paul Craig Roberts

May 6, 2017

Dear Readers: I very much appreciate the support you show for me in your emails. I seldom receive a rude email from you, and when I do it is usually something off subject, such as a reader angry with Israel and unloading on me with an accusation that I am a coward and a “Jew-lover” because I don’t do enough to expose the crimes of the Jews.

 

This accusation always amuses me as the ADL lists me as an anti-Semite because I occasionally make an entirely justified criticism of Israel’s mistreatment of Palestinians and excessive influence over US foreign policy, as have many outstanding scholars, such as John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt, and many Jews themselves.

My friends find my designation by the ADL as an anti-Semite hilarious. The person whom I selected as my principal deputy in the US Treasury is a Jew. David Meiselman, my friend and co-author with me of an important study of the Congressional Budget Office, is a Jew (deceased). I went to Oxford for the express purpose of studying under Michael Polanyi, a Jew who had to leave his scientific post in Germany to escape the Nazis. Milton Friedman, an early supporter of the Institute for Political Economy, is a Jew (deceased). When my book (1971) on the Soviet economy was republished in 1990 without a word changed, it was a Jew who wrote the Introduction. He asked, “Why did only Roberts get it right?”

I have had Israelis as house guests.

And the ADL labels me an anti-Semite. Clearly, the term no longer means anything.

I hold Israel and the Israel Lobby accountable, just as I held accountable the Reagan administration, the George H.W. Bush administration, the Clinton regime, the George W. Bush regime, the Obama regime, and the Trump regime. (I differentiate between administration and regime on the basis of whether the president actually had meaningful control over the government. If the president has some control, he has an administration.)

According to the ADL’s logic, I am both anti-Reagan and anti-American. But readers see me as a true patriot, and Reagan-haters see me as a Reagan-apologist. Clearly, something is wrong with the ADL’s logic.

Obviously, the Israel Lobby has destroyed the meaning of anti-Semite. In its effort to control the explanation of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the Israel Lobby has made “anti-Semite” into a badge of honor.

Control over explanations is important to Zionist Israel. If Americans can be convinced, as many have been, that Palestinians are terrorists out to kill all Jews, Israel’s theft of Palestine and mistreatment of Palestinians is not the issue that it would otherwise be. The Israel Lobby also works hard to control which voices are acceptable and which are not. For example, no one is permitted to investigate the Holocaust. Some European countries have a law against Holocaust investigation, and historians have been sent to prison for challenging the official explanation, which it is mandatory to believe.

In the US the Israel Lobby can even overturn decisions on academic tenure. For example, the outstanding scholar, Norman Finkelstein, a Jew and a critic of Israel, was denied tenure at a Catholic University solely on the basis of objection from the Israel Lobby. I find it extraordinary that not even Catholic Universities can stand up to the power of the Israel Lobby. The tenure committee and the faculty voted Finkelstein’s tenure, and the Israel Lobby interceded with the university president and blocked it.

Similarly, Steven Salaita was offered a tenure appointment at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, accepted it, resigned his tenure at Virginia Tech, sold his house and moved his family to Illinois only to have the president of the University of Illinois illegally cancel his appointment, apparently on orders from the Israel Lobby. Salaita’s attitude toward Israel was not acceptable to Israel.

The Israel Lobby succeeded in eliminating two outstanding scholars from American academic life, thereby extending Zionist control of the Israeli/Palestinian explanation by eliminating alternative explanations. As far as I can ascertain, neither scholar has been able to overcome the slander and obtain an academic appointment, a great loss to students and scholarship.

If a writer so much as reports these factual events, the writer is branded an anti-Semite by the Israel Lobby. In former times, an anti-Semite meant a person who hated Jews. But today it means anyone who makes even a mild criticism of Israel’s policy toward the Palestinians whose lands Israel occupies and is stealing. Indeed, practically nothing is left of Palestine except the Gaza ghetto that is totally controlled by Israel. All movements of supplies and people in and out are controlled by Israel. Essentially, Gaza is the Warsaw Ghetto.

These are simple irrefutable facts. Every aware person knows this, but if you say it or write it, you are a “Jew-hater.”

Many Jews have been conditioned to believe that any criticism of Israel, no matter how justified, is anti-Semitic. Even Israel’s friend, former US President Jimmy Carter, is reviled by the Israel Lobby as an anti-Semite. Carter cautioned Israel against mistreatment of the Palestinians and was instantly branded a “Jew-hater.” The Jews on the board of the Carter Center resigned.

How do we account for the vast power of the lobby of a foreign power whose entire consequence in the world depends solely on Washington’s support? How does a dependent country control, or if control is too strong, so heavily influence, Washington’s policy in the Middle East, resulting in millions of deaths of Muslims and the destruction of entire countries, and also overturn the tenure decisions of US Catholic and state universities? If the US is a superpower, clearly Israel is the Hyperpower.

Israel owes much of its influence to the billions of US taxpayers’ dollars that Washington gives each year to Israel. Money is fungible, and it comes back to the US in the form of political campaign contributions to support Israel’s friends and defeat Israel’s critics. It come back in support for friendly media, academics, and university administrations. It influences entertainment and some say court cases, not by paying off judges, but by influencing the explanation of the case. And so on. In other words, US taxpayers’ money is used to give a foreign government more control over the US than US citizens have.

There is a great deal of hostility toward the Zionist government among European populations and Muslims. But this hostility does not transfer to all Jews. People are capable of differentiating the responsible from the powerless.

All Jews are not Israelis and all Israelis are not Zionists. Some Israelis complain that the Zionist government is squeezing morality out of the Israeli population, and they pay a price for saying so. Israelis who organize in protest to the Zionist policies against the Palestinians, such as Jeff Halper, coordinator of the Israeli Committee Against Home Demolitions, are branded “self-hating Jews” by the Zionist government.

Few Americans know that the Israeli government confiscates entire Palestinian villages and demolishes Palestinians’ homes, using specially built equipment by the American corporation, Caterpillar, and constructs housing for Israelis. The Israel Lobby will deny this despite the fact that Israeli citizens have formed an organization that seeks to use law and Israeli courts to prevent it. Western governments and presstitutes are not interested in what becomes of the dispossessed Palestinians.

Halper is Jewish, but the Palestinians do not hate him. He can go to Gaza without any danger from the Muslims. The only danger he faces is from the Israeli government who arrested him for going to Gaza. Indeed, distinguished Israelis, such as Gilad Atzmon and Ilan Pappe have left Israel for safety in Europe. Both are demonized by the Israel Lobby. If you care to understand Zionist Israel, read Atzmon’s book, The Wandering Who? For Palestine, read Pappe’s books.

Think about this more generally. As Muslims have been under foreign occupation for a very long time, they are aware that they have no control over “their” governments. Some of them are aware that Europeans and Americans also have no control over their governments. Just as Muslims in Palestine do not hold Halper responsible for Israel’s murderous policies toward Palestinians, what sense does it make for Muslims to hold hapless Europeans and Americans responsible for the evil policies of the US and European governments?

If you think about this, you can see why it is suspicious that “Muslim terrorism” commits acts only against innocents, who have no influence over government policy, and not against the responsible government officials.

If Muslim terrorists are so sophisticated that they can pull off events such as 9/11 and the Nice truck attack, they are sufficiently sophisticated to understand who their real enemies are. They know that the enemy is not Frenchmen enjoying an evening on French streets.

As I have previously observed, the main neoconservatives are well known from their high positions in the George W. Bush and Obama regimes. Their responsibility for the years of US invasions, bombings, and destruction of millions of Muslim peoples is known. None of the neoconservatives have any protection. Yet there has never been a terrorist attack against any of them.

Considering that the alleged Muslim terrorists are so inconsiderate of their own lives, they could easily take out former VP Dick Cheney, who has only minimal protection. Consider that there have been no Muslim terror attacks on unprotected US Senators and Representatives and presstitutes who have fervently supported two decades of murderous warfare against Muslims. Consider that the US and Europe are now full of Muslim refugees from Washington’s wars, and terrorist events (which are probably false flag events) are rare.

In a real democracy with a real media and real opposition parties, these questions would be investigated and part of public debate, not dismissed as “conspiracy theory.” As I reported in a previous column, CIA documents were discovered that show that the CIA invented the use of “conspiracy theory” to prevent a real investigation into the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. http://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2016/08/31/are-you-a-mind-controlled-cia-stooge-paul-craig-roberts/

To return to the purpose of this missive, which is to thank you for your support, I agree with the numerous readers who wrote to tell me that they do not waste time reading comment sections in which the majority of comments are the work of narcisstic idiots and paid trolls, and in which anonymous commentators slander not only the columnist but also one another. Readers advise me to treat the comments as water off the duck’s back.

I did not protest because of thin skin. As I understand it, many governments, agencies of governments, and private interest groups and individuals with agendas, such as Monsanto and George Soros, finance trolls to attack Internet writers who are critical of their agendas. Other reports say that Google is cooperating with the government’s control over explanations by making it more difficult to find truth-tellers online. Other reports say that Twitter and Facebook are censoring what can be posted.

The process of discrediting truth-tellers works as follows: A writer provides an explanation that differs from the official explanation. He or she is set upon both by narcissists full of themselves and by trolls.

His or her argument is mischaracterized. He or she is branded a “conspiracy theorist,” a “Putin dupe” or “Russian agent,” an “anti-Semite,” an “anti-American,” a “Reagan apologist.” Once these comments are posted, the troll network spreads them into social media, with the intention of discrediting the writer and creating suspicion about his or her motives and sanity. As most people are poorly informed and have difficulty differentiating The Matrix from The Reality, the trolls succeed in limiting the writer’s audience.

It is not “thin skinned” to object to a process that discredits those who provide real information when the purpose of the discrediting is to protect the official disinformation used to control explanations.

Readers continually ask me what can be done to regain control over the government. My answer is that the people cannot do anything until they understand the situation. Without good information, they cannot understand the situation. Narcissists and trolls work to keep people confused about legitimate sources.

If comment sections required real names and real email addresses, comments would be less damaging to the truth as commentators would be less inclined toward irresponsibility and malice.

Everywhere in the Western World, and this includes the Asian provinces of the American Empire, it is close to impossible to acquire accurate information. The only purpose of information from Washington and from the print and TV media and NPR is to get the captive populations to accept the officlal explanation that serves the ruling agenda. Those who provide real news, such as RT, are attacked as fonts of “fake news.” In other words, for Washington truth is an enemy. As George Orwell said, “In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.”

The Saker says that the agenda most in need of our attention is the “anglo-zionist agenda” of US/Israeli domination. The overriding fact of our time is that any country or person in the way of US/Israeli domination is destined for destruction.

That is our reality.

Russia and China have finally caught on that the democratic rhetoric issuing from Washington is a cloak for the evil that is the operating force of the US government.

Will Russia and China accept the hegemony of this evil or will they not? It is a very serious matter that Washington has convinced the Russian and Chinese governments that Washington is preparing a preemptive nuclear strike against them. This is extremely serious, not something for narcissists and trolls to play with.

For all who ask what to do, the answer is to speak out strongly against Washington for risking all life by convincing Russia and China that Washington is preparing to nuke them. To understand how dire the situation is, ask yourself why you hear no protests against such provocation of Russia and China from the West’s print and TV media, from the US Senate, from the House of Representatives, from European political leaders, from hardly anyone.

The absence of protest tells the Russians and Chinese that the American Empire is OK with the preemptive attack. Where is Merkel’s voice? Where is May’s? Where is any leader’s voice?

The absence of protest voices tells Russia and China that the die is cast.

 


 

Paul Craig Roberts has had careers in scholarship and academia, journalism, public service, and business. He is chairman of The Institute for Political Economy.

 

By Michael Howard

May 3, 2017

The person with the sign left out a few lies…
You lied about the Maine.
You lied about Pearl Harbor.
You lied about the Gulf of Tonkin.
You lied about the JFK assassination.
You lied about the Liberty.
You lied about 9/11.

 

In his essential study of the ongoing crisis in Ukraine, University of Kent Professor Richard Sakwa writes that, somewhere down the road, Western media’s reductive, ideological coverage of the conflict “will undoubtedly become the subject of many an intriguing academic study.” That’s if the human race isn’t wiped out by environmental catastrophe or nuclear holocaust first—far from a sure thing, especially with the Trump regime running amok, lobbing cruise missiles and sending armadas (or not) and dropping MOABs, and all of it to quell suspicions that the president’s undersized hands might reflect a certain priapic compactness.

But while, as Sakwa says, the reportage of Ukraine’s civil war by our renowned newspapers has been abysmal and embarrassing, it doesn’t hold a candle to that of Syria, where any pretense of real journalism was done away with long ago. Syria is proof of how low mainstream Western media are prepared to sink in the service of state power; it’s where journalistic standards, like global jihadists, go to die. Rank propaganda is the order of the day. Honest observers are appalled. Stephen Kinzer wrote that “coverage of the Syrian war will be remembered as one of the most shameful episodes in the history of the American press,” while Robert Fisk described the war as “the most poorly reported conflict in the world.” Patrick Cockburn registered a similar concern, writing that “Western media has allowed itself to become a conduit for propaganda for one side in this savage conflict.” This has grave implications:

News organizations have ended up being spoon-fed by jihadis and their sympathizers who make it impossible for independent observers to visit areas they control. By regurgitating information from such tainted sources, the media gives al-Qaeda type groups every incentive to go on killing and abducting journalists in order to create and benefit from a news vacuum they can fill themselves.

So the ideology-driven Western media, in allying themselves with the armed opposition in Syria, have helped to create a situation in which it pays to kidnap and murder people who seek to report the truth. Ergo, they have violated the canons of their profession in the most egregious manner possible. And you’ll have noticed that they’re totally shameless about it. None of this gives them a moment of pause. They keep pumping out the propaganda, day in, day out, never stopping to reflect on the potential consequences. When one story falls apart, they move on to the next one. The most, or perhaps only, important thing is to manipulate public opinion so that it corresponds to government policy. Beyond that, who cares?

The list of media half-truths and outright lies in the context of Syria is endless. Take chemical weapons. Numerous incidents have been cited in the news, most of them small-time (meaning crude attacks with no casualties), all of them blamed on the government. And yet the UN has documented numerous cases in which terrorist outfits, including ISIS, used chemical weapons against civilians and Syrian soldiers. It also heard testimony from witnesses on the ground that opposition fighters were staging chemical attacks with the goal of framing the Syrian military. And contrary to every major media outlet in the West, the UN did not blame Assad for the infamous sarin attack of August 2013, stating after an investigation that “surface-to-surface rockets containing the nerve agent sarin were used” by one of “the parties in the Syrian Arab Republic.” The culprit was not identified. But all of this is irrelevant. We want Assad to be responsible for every chemical incident; therefore, he is. See Trump’s Tomahawk salvo.

Then there’s the so-called White Helmets, the subject of an Academy Award-winning Netflix documentary. Billed as a volunteer, nonpartisan rescue organization, the White Helmets have become a symbol of heroic resistance to the Syrian government’s barbarism. But appearances can be deceiving, and they most certainly are in this case. Some salient facts: the White Helmets program was put together not in Syria but in Turkey, by James Le Mesurier, a former British military contractor; the White Helmets operate exclusively in “rebel”-held territory, meaning they’re embedded with groups like al-Nusra (al-Qaeda); the White Helmets are paid tens of millions of dollars by the US, UK and other Western governments; the White Helmets have repeatedly called for a NATO-imposed no-fly zone over Syria (think Libya); the White Helmets rail against the United Nations for recognizing the legitimacy of the Syrian government. Curious work for a neutral NGO. It should be noted that the White Helmets have been accused of staging rescue videos for propaganda purposes. Naturally, they deny this indignantly. And yet a video exists in which the White Helmets quite literally do stage a rescue as part of the “mannequin challenge,” whatever the hell that is. Take from that what you wish.

In any case, it’s plain to see that the White Helmets are not exactly who they purport to be. The Oscar-winning Netflix “documentary” is nothing more than a glossy advertisement, or “contrived infomercial,” as investigative journalist Rick Sterling put it. The film is shot in Turkey, not Syria, and it contains no useful information whatsoever, unless you count the fact that one of the White Helmets admits to having been a rebel fighter for a period of three months, and thus can hardly be regarded as neutral. It’s also a very boring documentary, but that’s beside the point. That such a thinly-veiled propaganda film about such a thinly-veiled propaganda organization won an Academy Award should, by rights, engender a minor scandal. But we’re living in the era of fake news, as The New York Times ironically insists.

What else? There was the notorious “Caesar” hoax, in which a self-described defector from the Syrian army—a former army photographer with the codename “Caesar”—claimed to have photographic evidence that the Syrian government had tortured to death 11,000 political prisoners. As it happens, something like half of the 55,000 images depict dead and mutilated Syrian soldiers and pro-government militia. They’re war photos. Tons of dead bodies from both sides of the conflict, some of them blown apart by car bombs, others beaten and emaciated, were photographed for documentary evidence. As Rick Sterling wrote last year, “The photographs show a wide range of deceased persons, from Syrian soldiers to Syrian militia members to opposition fighters to civilians trapped in conflict zones to regular deaths in the military hospital.” Had some been tortured by Assad’s security forces? No doubt. But the story was grossly misrepresented in the Western press, leading us to believe that the 55,000 images proved the existence of a network of Nazi-style death camps run by the Syrian government. They didn’t.

Speaking of atrocity propaganda—very chic these days—the eminent BBC joined the club in 2013, throwing journalistic integrity to the wind with its broadcast of Saving Syria’s Children, a documentary that ostensibly showed the aftermath of an incendiary bomb raid. According to the report, the Syrian government used either napalm or thermite to attack schoolchildren in a remote district of Aleppo. The resulting footage, filmed in a nearby hospital, is bizarre in the extreme, with the alleged burn victims clearly taking stage directions from people off-camera. The story was dissected and ultimately exposed as a sham by journalist Robert Stuart, at which point the BBC began removing all traces of the film from YouTube, citing copyright issues. No formal retraction was ever made, to the BBC’s everlasting shame. But perhaps I shouldn’t fault them for exercising prudence. After all, if the BBC began retracting every false and/or inaccurate report on the Syrian conflict there would be very little left.

The fake news reached its acme toward the end of last year as the Syrian military, backed by Russian air support, closed in on eastern Aleppo, then occupied by al-Nusra and some other Wahhabi gangs. Fresh war crimes were being reported almost daily. The “last hospital in Aleppo” was destroyed twelve different times. Women were committing suicide en bloc to avoid being raped (source: “rebel” commander). Assad and Putin were starving and/or bombing to death 250,000 civilians. We heard that figure over and over again: a quarter of a million people trapped in the jihadist enclave. It was drilled into our heads like a religious precept. Nobody seemed to care very much when the real number turned out to be something like 100,000 (or perhaps only 40,000). Presumably the old amnesia kicked in. As they say in the psychology world, motivated forgetting: America’s go-to defense mechanism.

Our memory is very selective indeed. There does appear to be at least one aspect of the battle we haven’t quite forgot: Bana Alabed, aka The Face (or Voice) of Aleppo. The seven-year-old earned that moniker by narrating the city’s gradual “fall” via Twitter. It mattered not that she was being cynically exploited as an instrument of pathos by her mother, who obviously controlled the account and who evidently forgot on occasion that she was tweeting on behalf of a seven-year-old girl (at one point, in a tweet that has since been taken down, she explicitly lobbied for World War Three). Bana, or the idea of Bana, served a useful propaganda function. You see, people in the West need to be shown dead or suffering children before they can, on the one hand, apprehend how despicable war is and, on the other, support another bloody US military adventure in the name of humanitarianism. Because you’d have to be a monster to look at the child and not feel motivated to “do something.”

That’s the way it works. Hence the image of the dead three-year-old refugee who washed up on a beach, or the one of the dust-covered boy sitting in the back of an ambulance, or Trump’s talk of “beautiful babies.” Of course, the effects of the humanitarian escalation, should it come to pass, are duly sanitized. We didn’t, for instance, see any pictures of dead Iraqi children that were killed as a result of the US invasion. Nor do we keep up with the Twitter account of some seven-year-old child living under siege in Mosul, where American bombs continue to rain down on civilian sites. That would be bad for business. But Bana is good for business. So good, in fact, that she now has a book deal with Simon & Schuster. You’ve just crossed over into The Twilight Zone.

How to Bring Down the Elephant in the Room

 

By The Saker

April 16, 2017 • 6,300 Words

First, a painful, but needed, clarification:

Basement crazies. Neocons. Zionists. Israel Lobbyists. Judaics. Jews. Somewhere along this list we bump into the proverbial “elephant in the room”. For some this bumping will happen earlier in the list, for others a little later down the list, but the list will be more or less the same for everybody. Proper etiquette, as least in the West, would want to make us run away from that topic. I won’t. Why? Well, for one thing I am constantly accused of not discussing this elephant. Furthermore, I am afraid that the role this elephant is playing is particularly toxic right now. So let me try to deal with this beast, but first I have to begin with some caveats.

First, terminology. For those who have not seen it, please read my article “Why I use the term AngloZionist and why it is important“. Second, please read my friend Gilad Atzmon’s article “Jews, Judaism & Jewishness” (or, even better, please read his seminal book The Wondering Who). Please note that Gilad specifically excludes Judaics (religious Jews,) from his discussion. He writes “I do not deal with Jews as a race or an ethnicity. I also generally avoid dealing with Judaism (the religion)”. I very much include them in my discussion. However, I also fully agree with Gilad when he writes that “Jews Are Not a Race But Jewish Identity is Racist” (those having any doubts about Jews not being a race or ethnicity should read Shlomo Sand’s excellent book “The Invention of the Jewish People“). Lastly, please carefully review my definition of racism as spelled out in my “moderation policies“:

Racism is, in my opinion, not so much the belief that various human groups are different from each other, say like dog breeds can be different, but the belief that the differences between human groups are larger than within the group. Second, racism is also a belief that the biological characteristics of your group somehow pre-determine your actions/choices/values in life. Third, racism often, but not always, assumes a hierarchy amongst human groups (Germanic Aryans over Slavs or Jews, Jews over Gentiles, etc.). I believe that God created all humans with the same purpose and that we are all “brothers in Adam”, that we all equally share the image (eternal and inherent potential for perfection) of God (as opposed to our likeness to Him, which is our temporary and changing individual condition).

To sum it all up, I need to warn both racists and rabid anti-anti-Zionists that I will disappoint them both: the object of my discussion and criticism below will be limited to categories which a person chooses to belong to or endorse (religion, political ideas, etc.) and not categories which one is born with (race, ethnicity).

Second, so what are Jews if not a race? In my opinion, they are a tribe (which Oxford Dictionaires defines as: a social division in a traditional society consisting of families or communities linked by social, economic, religious, or blood ties, with a common culture and dialect, typically having a recognized leader). A tribe is a group one can chose to join (Elizabeth Taylor) or leave (Gilad Atzmon).

Third, it is precisely and because Jews are a tribe that we, non-Jews, owe them exactly nothing: no special status, neither bad nor good, no special privilege of any kind, no special respect or “sensitivity” – nothing at all. We ought to treat Jews exactly as we treat any other of our fellow human beings: as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise (Luke 6:31). So if being Jewish is a choice and if any choice is a legitimate object of discussion and criticism, then (choosing to) being Jewish is a legitimate object of discussion and criticism. Conversely, those who would deny us the right to criticize Jews are, of course, the real racists since they do believe that Jews somehow deserve a special status. In fact, that notion is at the core of the entire Jewish identity and ideology.

Now let’s come back to our opening list: Basement crazies. Neocons. Zionists. Israel Lobbyists. Judaics. Jews. I submit that these are all legitimate categories as long as it is clear that “Jews by birth only”, what Alain Soral in France calls “the everyday Jews”, are not included in this list. Thus, for our purposes and in this context, these terms are all interchangeable. My own preference still goes for “Zionist” because it combines the ideological racism of secular Jews with the religious racism of Judaics (if you don’t like my choice, just replace “Zionist” with any of the categories I listed above). Zionism used to be secular, but it has turned religious during the late 20th century now and so for our purposes this term can encompass both secular and religious Jewish supremacists. Add to this some more or less conservative opinions and minsets and you have “Ziocons” as an alternative expression.

[Sidebar: it tells you something about the power of the Zionist propaganda machine, I call it the Ziomedia, that I would have to preface this article with a 700+ explanatory words note to try to overcome conditioned mental reflexes in the reader (that I might be an evil anti-Semite). By the way, I am under no illusions either: some Jews or doubleplusgoodthinking shabbos-goyim will still accuse me of racism. This just comes with the territory. But the good news is when I will challenge them to prove their accusation they will walk away empty-handed].

* * *

The reason why I decided to tackle this issue today is that the forces who broke Trump in less than a month are also the very same forces who have forced him into a political 180: the Neocons and the US deep state. However, I think that these two concepts can be fused into on I would call the “Ziocons”: basically Zionists plus some rabid Anglo imperialists à la Cheney or McCain. These are the folks who control the US corporate media, Hollywood, Congress, most of academia, etc. These are the folks who organized a ferocious assault on the “nationalist” or “patriotic” wing of Trump supporters and ousted Flynn and Bannon and these are the folks who basically staged a color revolution against Trump. There is some pretty good evidence that the person in charge of this quiet coup is Jared Kushner, a rabid Zionist. Maybe. Maybe not. This does not really matter, what matters now is to understand what this all means for the rest of us in the “basket of deplorables”, the “99%ers” – basically the rest of the planet.

Making sense of the crazies

Making sense of the motives and goals (one cannot speak of “logic” in this case) of self-deluded racists can be a difficult exercise. But when the “basement crazies” (reminder: the term from from here) are basically in control of the policies of the US Empire, this exercise becomes crucial, vital for the survival of the mentally sane. I will now try to outline the reasons behind the “new” Trump policies using two examples: Syria and Russia.

Syria. I think that we can all agree that having the black flag of Daesh fly over Damascus would be a disaster for Israel. Right? Wrong! You are thinking like a mentally sane person. This is not how the Israelis think at all. For them, Daesh is much preferable to Assad not only because Assad is the cornerstone of a unitary Syria, but because Daesh in power gives the Israelis the perfect pretext to establish a “security zone” to “protect” northern Israel. And that, in plain English, means fully occupying and annexing the Golan (an old Israeli dream). Even better, the Israelis know Daesh really well (they helped create it with the USA and Saudi Arabia) and they know that Daesh is a mortal threat to Hezbollah. By putting Daesh into power in Syria, the Israelis hope for a long, bloody and never ending war in Lebanon and Syria. While their northern neighbors would be plugged into maelstrom of atrocities and horrors, the Israelis would get to watch it all from across their border while sending a few aircraft from time to time to bomb Hezbollah positions or even innocent civilians under whatever pretext. Remember how the Israelis watched in total delight how their forces bombed the population of Gaza in 2014? With Daesh in power in Damascus, they would get an even better show to take their kids to. Finally, and last but most definitely not least, the Syrian Christians would be basically completely wiped out. For those who know the hatred Judaics and Jews have always felt for Christianity (even today) it will be clear why the Israelis would want Daesh in power in Syria: Daesh is basically a tool to carve up an even bigger Zionist entity.

Russia. Ziocons absolutely loathe Russia and everything Russian. Particularly the ex-Trotskyists turned Neocons. I have explained the origins of this hatred elsewhere and I won’t repeat it all here. You just need to study the genocidal policies against anything Russian of the first Bolshevik government (which was 80%-85% Jews; don’t believe me? Then listen to Putin himself). I have already discussed “The ancient spiritual roots of russophobia” in a past article and I have also explain what rabbinical Phariseism (what is mistakenly called “Judaism” nowadays) is little more than an “anti-Christianity“(please read those articles if this complex and fascinating history is of interest to you). The bottom line is this: modern Neocons are little more than former Trotskyists who have found a new host to use. Their hatred for everything Russian is still so visceral that they rather support bona fide Nazis (isn’t this ironic?) in the Ukraine than Russia, which is even more paradoxical if you recall that before the 1917 Bolshevik coup anti-Jewish feelings were much stronger in what is today the Ukraine than in what is the Russian Federation today. In fact, relations between Russians and Jews have, I would argue, been significantly improving since the Nazi coup in Kiev, much to the chagrin of the relatively few Russians left who truly hate Jews. While you will hear a lot of criticism of organized political Jewry in Russia, especially compared to the West, there is very little true anti-Jewish racism in Russia today, and even less publicly expressed in the media (in fact, ‘hate speech’ is illegal in Russia). One thing to keep in mind is that there are many substantial differences between Russian Jews and US Jews, especially amongst those Russian Jews who deliberately chose not to emigrate to Israel, or some other western country (those interested in this topic can find a more detailed discussion here). Jews in Russia today deliberately chose to stay and that, right there, show a very different attitude than the attitude of those (Jews and non-Jews) who took the first opportunity to get out of Russia as soon as possible. Bottom line – Ziocons feel an overwhelming and always present hatred for Russia and Russians and that factor is one of the key components of their motivations. Unless you take that hatred into account you will never be able to make sense of the Ziocons and their demented policies.

Making sense of Trump

I think that Trump can be criticized for a lot of things, but there is exactly zero evidence of him ever harboring anti-Russian feelings. There is plenty of evidence that he has always been pro-Israeli, but no more than any politician or businessman in the USA. I doubt that Trump even knows where the Golan Heights even are. He probably also does not know that Hezbollah and Daesh are mortal enemies. Yes, Trump is a poorly educated ignoramus who is much better suited to the shows in Las Vegas than to be President of a nuclear superpower, but I don’t see any signs of him being hateful of anybody. More generally, the guy is really not ideological. The best evidence is his goofy idea of building a wall to solve the problem of illegal immigration: he (correctly) identified a problem, but then he came up with a Kindergarten level (pseudo) solution. The same goes for his views on Russia. He probably figured out something along these lines: “Putin is a strong guy, Russia is a strong country, they hate Daesh and want to destroy it – let’s join forces”. The poor man apparently had absolutely no idea of the power and maniacal drive of the Neocons who met him once he entered the White House. Even worse is the fact that he apparently does not realize that they are now using him to try out some pretty demented policies for which they will later try to impeach him as the sole culprit should things go wrong (and they most definitely will). Frankly, I get the feeling that Trump was basically sincere in his desire to “drain the swamp” but that he is simply not too clever (just the way he betrayed Flynn and Bannon to try to appease the Ziocons is so self-defeating and, frankly, stupid). But even if I am wrong and Trump was “their” plant all along (I still don’t believe that at all), the end result is the same: we now have the Ziocons in total control of BOTH parties in Congress (or, more accurately, both wings of the Ziocon party in Congress), in total control of the White House, the mass media and Hollywood. I am not so sure that they truly are in control of the Pentagon, but when I see the kind of pliable and spineless figures military Trump has recently appointed, I get the feeling that there are only two types of officers left in the top ranks of the US military: retired ones and “ass-kissing little chickenshitsà la Petraeus. Not good. Not good at all. As for the ridiculously bloated (and therefore mostly incompetent) “three letter agencies soup”, it appears that it has been turned from an intelligence community to a highly politicized propaganda community whose main purpose is to justify whatever counter-factual insanity their political bosses can dream up. Again. Not good. Not good at all.

Living with ZOG :-)

ZOG. Or “Zionist Occupation Government”. That used to be the favorite expression of various Jew-haters out there and it’s use was considered the surefire sign of a rabid anti-Semite. And yet, that is precisely what we are now all living with: a Zionist occupation government which has clearly forced Trump to make a 180 on all his campaign promises and which now risks turning the USA into a radioactive desert resulting from a completely artificial and needless confrontation with Russia. To those horrified that I would dare use an expression like ZOG I will reply this: believe me, I am even more upset about having to admit that ZOG is real than you are: I really don’t care for racists of any kind, and most of these ZOG folks looks like real racists to me. But, alas, they are also right! Facts are facts, you cannot deny them or refuse to correctly qualify them that because of the possible “overtones” of the term chosen or because of some invented need to be especially “sensitive” when dealing with some special group. Remember – Jews are not owed any special favor and there is no need to constantly engage in various forms of complex linguistic or mental yoga contortions when discussing them and their role in the modern world. Still, I am using ZOG here just to show that it can be done, but this is not my favorite expression. I just feel that committing the crimethink here will encourage others to come out of their shell and speak freely. At the very least, asking the question of whether we do or do not have a Zionist Occupation Government is an extremely important exercise all by itself. Hence, today I ZOG-away :-)

Some might argue with the “occupation” part of the label. Okay – what would you call a regime which is clearly acting in direct opposition to the will of an overwhelming majority of the people and which acts in the interests of a foreign power (with which the USA does not even have a formal treaty)? Because, please make no mistake here, this is not a Trump-specific phenomenon. I think that it all began with Reagan and that the Ziocons fully seized power with Bill Clinton. Others think that it all began with Kennedy. Whatever may be the case, what is clear is that election after election Americans consistently vote for less war and each time around they get more wars. It is true that most Americans are mentally unable to conceptually analyze the bizarre phenomena of a country with no enemies and formidable natural barriers needs to spend more on wars of aggression then the rest of the planet spends of defense. Nor are they equipped to wonder why the US needs 16/17 intelligences agencies when the vast majority of countries out there do fine with 2-5. Lastly, most Americans do believe that they have some kind of duty to police the planet. True. But at the same time, they are also sick and tired of wars, if only because so many of their relatives, friends and neighbors return from these wars either dead or crippled. That, and the fact that Americans absolutely hate losing. Losing is all the USA has been doing since God knows how long: losing wars against all but the weakest and most defenseless countries out there. Most Americans also would prefer that the money spent aboard on “defending democracy” (i.e. imperialism) be spent at home to help the millions of Americans in need in the USA. As the southern rock band Lynyrd Snynyrd (which hails from Jacksonville, Florida) once put it in their songs “Things goin’ on“:

Too many lives they’ve spent across the ocean
Too much money been spent upon the moon
Well, until they make it right
I hope they never sleep at night
They better make some changes
And do it soon

Soon? That song was written in 1978! And since then, nothing has changed. If anything, things got worse, much worse.

Houston, we got a problem

ZOG is not an American problem. It is a planetary problem, if only because right now ZOG controls the US nuclear arsenal. And Trump, who clearly and unequivocally campaigned on a peace platform, is now sending a “very powerful armada” to the coast of the DPRK. Powerful as this armada might be, it can do absolutely nothing to prevent the DPRK artillery from smashing Seoul into smithereens. You think that I am exaggerating? Business Insider estimated in 2010 that it would take the DPRK 2 hours to completely obliterate Seoul. Why? Because the DPRK has enough artillery pieces to fire 500,000 rounds of artillery on Seoul in the first hour of a conflict, that’s why. Here we are talking about old fashioned, conventional, artillery pieces. Wikipedia says that the DPRK has 8,600 artillery pieces and 4,800 multiple rocket launcher systems. Two days a go a Russian expert said that the real figure was just under 20’000 artillery pieces. Whatever thee exact figure, suffice to say that it is “a lot”.

The DPRK also has some more modern but equally dangerous capabilities. Of special importance here are the roughly 200’000 North Korean special forces. Oh sure, these 200’000 are not US Green Beret or Russian Spetsnaz, but they are adequate for their task: to operate deep behind enemy lies and create chaos and destroy key objectives. You tell me – what can the USS Carl Vinson carrier strike group deploy against these well hidden and dispersed 10’000+ artillery pieces and 200’000 special forces? Exactly, nothing at all.

And did I mention that the DPRK has nukes?

No, I did not. First, I am not at all sure that the kind of nukes the DPRK has can be fitted for delivery on a missile. Having a few nukes and having missiles is one thing, having missiles capable of adequately delivering these nukes is quite another. I suppose that DPRK special forces could simply drive a nuke down near Seoul on a simple army truck and blow it up. Or bring it in a container ship somewhere in the general vicinity of a US or Korean base and blow it up there. One neat trick would be to load a nuke on a civilian ship, say a fishing vessel, and bring it somewhere near the USS Carl Vinson and then blow it up. Even if the USN ships survive this unscathed, the panic aboard these ships would be total. To be honest, this mostly Tom Clancy stuff, in real warfare I don’t think that the North Korean nukes would be very useful against a US attack. But you never know, n ecessity is the mother of invention, as the British like to say.

I don’t believe that Trump is dumb enough to actually strike at North Korea. I think that his dumbass plan is probably to shoot down a DPRK missile to show that he has made “America great again” or something equally asinine. The problem here is that I am not sure at all how Kim Jong-un and his Party minions might react to that kind of loss of face. What if they decided that they needed to fire some more missiles, some in the general direction of US forces in the region (there are fixed US targets all over the place). Then what? How will Trump prove that he is the biggest dog on the block? Could he decide to “punish” the offending missile launch site like he did with the al-Sharyat airbase in Syria? And if Trump does that – what will Kim Jong-un’s reaction be?

To be totally honest, I don’t think that the “very powerful armada” will do anything other than waste the US taxpayer’s money. I am getting a strong sense that Trump is all about appearance over substance, what the Russians call “показуха” – a kind of fake show of force, full with special effects and “cool” photo ops, but lacking any real substance. Still, being on the receiving end of Trump’s показуха (po-kah-zoo-kha) must be unnerving, especially if you already have natural paranoid tendencies. I am not at all sure the Kim Jong-un will find the presence of the US carrier strike group as pathetic and useless as I do.

Both Russia and Syria have shown an amazing about of restraint when provoked by Turkey or the US. This is mostly due to the fact that Russian and Syrian leaders are well-educated people who are less concerned with loss of face than with achieving their end result. In direct contrast, both Kim Jong-un and Trump are weak, insecure, leaders with an urgent need to prove to their people (and to themselves!) that they are tough guys. Exactly the most dangerous kind of mindset you want in any nuclear-capable power, be it huge like the USA or tiny like the DPRK.

So what does that have to do with the ZOG and the Ziocons?

Everything.

They are the ONLY ONES who really want to maintain the AngloZionst Empire at any cost. Trump made it clear over and over again that his priority was the USA and the American people, not the Empire. And yet now is is playing a crazy game of “nuclear chicken” with the DPRK. Does that sound like the “real Trump” to you? Maybe – but not to me. All this crazy stuff around the DPRK and the (few) nukes it apparently has, is all just a pretext to “play empire”, to show that, as Obama liked to say, the USA is the “indispensable nation“. God forbid the local countries would deal with that problem alone, without USN carrier strike groups involved in the “solving” of this problem!

[Sidebar: by the way, this is also the exact same situation in Syria: the Russians have single-handedly organized a viable peace-process on the ground and then followed it up with a multi-party conference in Astana, Kazakhstan. Looks great except for one problem: the indispensable nation was not even invited. Even worse, the prospects of peace breaking out became terribly real. The said indispensable nation therefore “invited itself” by illegally (and ineffectually) bombing a Syrian air base and, having now proven its capacity to wreck any peace process, the USA is now right back in center-stage of the negotiations about the future of Syria. In a perverse way, this almost makes sense.]

So yes, we have a problem and that problem is that ZOG is in total control of the Empire and will never accept to let it go, even if that means destroying the USA in the process.

I can imagine the gasp of horror and disgust some of you will have at seeing me use the ZOG expression. I assure you, it is quite deliberate on my part. I want to 1) wake you up and 2) show you that you cannot allow the discomfort created by conditioning to guide your analyses. As with all the other forms of crimethink, I recommend that you engage in a lot of it, preferably in public, and you will get used to it. First it will be hard, but with time it will get easier (it is also great fun). Furthermore, somebody needs to be the first one to scream “the emperor has no clothes“. Then, once one person does it, the others realize that it is safe and more follow. The key thing here is not to allow ideological “sacred cows” to roam around your intellectual mindspace and limit you in your thinking. Dogmas should be limited to Divine revelations, not human ideological constructs.

Where do we go from here?

Things are coming to a head. Trump presented himself as a real alternative to the ultimate warmongering shabbos-shiksa Hillary. It is now pretty darn obvious that what we got ourselves is just another puppet, but that the puppet-masters have not changed. The good news is that those who were sincere in their opposition to war are now openly speaking about Trump great betrayal. From Ann Coulter to Pat Buchanan, many paleo-Conservatives clearly “got it”. As did the real progressives. What we are left with is what I call the “extreme center”, basically zombies who get their news from the Ziomedia and who have so many mental blocks that it takes weeks of focused efforts to basically bring them back to reality.

The key issue here is how do we bring together those who are still capable of thought? I think that a minimalist agenda we can all agree upon could be composed of the following points:

  1. Peace/pacifism
  2. International law
  3. Human and civil rights
  4. Democracy
  5. Pluralism
  6. Anti-racism
  7. Ethics and morality

Sounds harmless? It ain’t, I assure you. ZOG can only survive by violence, terror and war. Furthermore, the AngloZionist Empire cannot abide by any principles of international law. As for human and civil right, once quick look at the Patriot Act (which was already ready by the time the 9/11 false flag operation was executed) will tell you how ZOG feels about these issues. More proof? How about the entire “fake news” canard? How about the new levels of censorship in YouTube, Facebook or Google? Don’t you see that this is simply a frontal attack on free speech and the First Amendment?! What about Black Lives Matter – is that not a perfect pretext to justify more police powers and a further militarization of police forces? To think that the Zionists care about human or civil rights is a joke! Just read what the Uber-Zionist and [putative] human right lawyer, the great Alan Dershowitz writes about torture, Israel or free speech (for Norman Finkelstein). Heck, just read what ultra-liberal super-mega human righter (well, after he returned to civilian life) and ex-President Jimmy Carter writes about Israel! Or look at the policies of the Bolshevik regime in Russia. It it pretty clear that these guys not only don’t give a damn about human or civil right, but that they are deeply offended and outraged when they are told that they cannot violate these rights.

What about democracy? How can that be a intellectual weapon? Simple – you show that every time the people (in the USA or Europe) voted for X they got Y. Or they were told to re-vote and re-vote and re-vote again and again until, finally, the Y won. That is a clear lack of democracy. So if you say that you want to restore democracy, you are basically advocating regime-change, but nicely wrapped into a “good” ideological wrapper. Western democracies are profoundly anti-democratic. Show it!

Pluralism? Same deal. All this takes is to prove that the western society has become a “mono-ideological” society were real dissent is simply not tolerated and were real pluralism is completely ascent from the public discourse. Demand that the enemies of the system be given equal time on air and always make sure that you give the supporters of the system equal time on media outlets you (we) control. Then ask them to compare. This is exactly what Russia is doing nowadays (see here if you are interested). Western democracies are profoundly anti-pluralistic. Again, show it!

Anti-racism. Should be obvious to the reader by now. Denounce, reject and attack any idea which gives any group any special status. Force your opponents to fess up to the fact that what they really want when they claim to struggle for “equality” is a special status for their single-issue minority. Reject any and all special interest groups and, especially, reject the notion that democracy is about defending the minority against the majority. In reality, minorities are always much more driven and motivated by a single issue which is why a coalition of minorities inevitably comes to power. What the world needs is the exact opposite: a democracy which would protect the majority against the minorities. Oh, sure, they will fight you on this one, but since you are right this is an intellectual argument you ought to be capable of winning pretty easily (just remember, don’t let accusations of crimethink freeze you in terror).

Last, my favorite one: ethics and morality. The modern western society has been built on a categorical rejection of ethics and morality. Slogans like “God is dead” or “Beyond good and evil” resulted in the most abject and viciously evil century in human history: the 20th century. Furthermore, most people by now can tell that Hollywood, and its bigger brother, the US porn industry, have played a central role in basically removing categories such as “good” or “truth” or “honor” from the mind of those infected by the US mass media, especially the Idiot-box (aka “telescreen” in Orwell’s 1984). Instead unbridled greed and consumption became the highest and most sacred expression of “our way of life” as Americans like to say. Hollywood movies proclaimed that “greed is good“. In fact, at the very core of the capitalist ideology is the belief that the sum total of everybody’s greed yields the happiest and most successful society possible. Crazy and sick stuff, but I don’t have the place to discuss this here. All I will say that that rehabilitating notions such as right and wrong, good and evil, truth and falsehood, healthy and natural versus unnatural and pathological is a great legal way (at least so far) to fight the Empire. Ditto for sexual morality and family. There is a reason why all Hollywood movies inevitably present only divorced or sexually promiscuous heroes: they are trying to destroy the natural family unit because they *correctly* identify the traditional family unit as a threat to the AngloZionist order. Likewise, there is also a reason why all the western elites are constantly plagued by accusations of pedophilia and other sexual scandals. One Russian commentator, Vitalii Tretiakov, recently hilariously paraphrased the old communist slogan and declared “naturals of all countries – come to Russia” [in modern Russian “naturals” is the antonym of “homosexual”). He was joking, of course, but he was also making a serious point: Russia has become the only country which dares to openly uphold the core values of Christianity and Islam (that, of course, only adds to the Ziocon’s hatred of Russia).

[Sidebar: by the way, and contrary to popular belief, Russia is not an especially religious country at all. While only a minority of Russians is truly religious, a majority of Russians seem to support religious values as civilizational ones. I don’t think that this is sustainable for too long, Russia will either become more religious or more secularized, but for the time being we have this apparently paradoxical situation of a generally secular society standing for traditional and religious values]

BookmarkYou might wonder how pacifism, international law, human and civil rights, democracy, pluralism, anti-racism, ethics and morality can help avert a nuclear war in Korea. In truth – they cannot directly do this. But in the long term, I firmly believe that these values can corrode the AngloZionist Empire from within. And look at the alternatives: Organizing political parties does not work in a system where money determine the outcome. “Direct action” does not work in a system which treats libertarians and ecologists as potential terrorists. Public protests does not work in a regime where the Ziomedia gets to decide which demonstration gets coverage and which one does not. Civil disobedience does not work in a regime which has no problem having the highest per capita incarceration rate on the planet. Running for office does not work in a regime which selects for spinelessness, immorality and, above all, subservience. Even running away abroad does not work when dealing with an Empire which has 700-1000 (depends on how you count) military bases worldwide and which will bomb the crap out of any government which strives at even a modicum of true sovereignty. The only other option is “internal exile”, when you build yourself you own inner world of spiritual and intellectual freedom and you basically “live there” with no external signs of you having “fled” the Empire’s ugly reality. But if nuclear-tipped ICBMs start flying no amount of “internal exile” will protect you, not even if you combine that internal exile with with a life far away in the boonies.

Orthodox Christian eschatology teaches that the End Times are inevitable. However, the Fathers also teach that we can push the End Times back by our collective actions, be it in the form of prayers or in the form of an open resistance to Evil in our world. I have three children, 1 girl and 2 boys, and I feel like I owe it to them to fight to make the world they will have to live even marginally better. And even if all my efforts are vain, it least I know that I resisted with everything I got. At the very least, I hope that it will inspire them to fight for their own children. I also believe that I have to resist this Empire because of all the good, decent and kind people I met in my life, including the Americans I have been living next to for so many years now. I don’t want any of them to die in a useless and stupid war triggered by the demented minds of a tiny demonic minority of mankind-hating psychopaths who, driven by their apparently infinite capacity for evil and self-delusion, apparently have convinced themselves that either they will own the planet or they will destroy it.

Saint Paul very accurately explained that “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:12). As for Ernesto Che Guevara, he wrote that “the true revolutionary is guided by a great feeling of love” (Love of living humanity). Today is Holy Paskha, the most joyful and sacred day in the Orthodox year, the day which marks the victory of Christ even against death itself! In the beautiful words of Saint John Chrysostomos:

O Death, where is your sting? O Hell, where is your victory? Christ is risen, and you are overthrown. Christ is risen, and the demons are fallen. Christ is risen, and the angels rejoice. Christ is risen, and life reigns. Christ is risen, and not one dead remains in the grave.

These words and this promise should give us the courage to resist no matter how ugly, evil and insane the world around us can become. Because we do not struggle against flesh and blood, but against wickedness in high places, and because we are not moved by hatred, but by the love for our fellow human being. Finally, the following words written by a true Jew several millennia ago will, I hope, give us all the courage to struggle until our victory: “I will not be afraid of ten thousands of people, who beset me round about. Arise, Lord; deliver me, my God: for thou hast smitten all who were without cause mine enemies; thou hast broken the teeth of sinners. Deliverance is the Lord’s, and thy blessing is upon thy people” (Ps. 3).

I greet you all with the ancient Christian greeting of Christ is Risen!

 

 

 

Beware the Dogs of War: Is the American Empire on the Verge of Collapse?

By John W. Whitehead

Of all the enemies to public liberty war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded because it comprises and develops the germ of every other. War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debts and taxes… known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few.… No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare. — James Madison

April 16, 2017

Waging endless wars abroad (in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and now Syria) isn’t making America—or the rest of the world—any safer, it’s certainly not making America great again, and it’s undeniably digging the U.S. deeper into debt.

In fact, it’s a wonder the economy hasn’t collapsed yet.

Indeed, even if we were to put an end to all of the government’s military meddling and bring all of the troops home today, it would take decades to pay down the price of these wars and get the government’s creditors off our backs. Even then, government spending would have to be slashed dramatically and taxes raised.

You do the math.

The government is $19 trillion in debt: War spending has ratcheted up the nation’s debt. The debt has now exceeded a staggering $19 trillion and is growing at an alarming rate of $35 million/hour and $2 billion every 24 hours.  Yet while defense contractors are getting richer than their wildest dreams, we’re in hock to foreign nations such as Japan and China (our two largest foreign holders at $1.13 trillion and $1.12 trillion respectively).

The Pentagon’s annual budget consumes almost 100% of individual income tax revenue. If there is any absolute maxim by which the federal government seems to operate, it is that the American taxpayer always gets ripped off, especially when it comes to paying the tab for America’s attempts to police the globe. Having been co-opted by greedy defense contractors, corrupt politicians and incompetent government officials, America’s expanding military empire is bleeding the country dry at a rate of more than $57 million per hour.

The government has spent $4.8 trillion on wars abroad since 9/11, with $7.9 trillion in interest: That’s a tax burden of more than $16,000 per American. Almost a quarter of that debt was incurred as a result of the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan and Syria. For the past 16 years, these wars have been paid for almost entirely by borrowing money from foreign nations and the U.S. Treasury. As the Atlantic points out, we’re fighting terrorism with a credit card. According to the Watson Institute for Public Affairs at Brown University, interest payments on what we’ve already borrowed for these failed wars could total over $7.9 trillion by 2053.

The government lost more than $160 billion to waste and fraud by the military and defense contractors: With paid contractors often outnumbering enlisted combat troops, the American war effort dubbed as the “coalition of the willing” has quickly evolved into the “coalition of the billing,” with American taxpayers forced to cough up billions of dollars for cash bribes, luxury bases, a highway to nowhere, faulty equipment, salaries for so-called “ghost soldiers,” and overpriced anything and everything associated with the war effort, including a $640 toilet seat and a $7600 coffee pot.

Taxpayers are being forced to pay $1.4 million per hour to provide U.S. weapons to countries that can’t afford them. As Mother Jones reports, the Pentagon’s Foreign Military Finance program “opens the way for the US government to pay for weapons for other countries—only to ‘promote world peace,’ of course—using your tax dollars, which are then recycled into the hands of military-industrial-complex corporations.”

The U.S. government spends more on wars (and military occupations) abroad every year than all 50 states combined spend on health, education, welfare, and safety. In fact, the U.S. spends more on its military than the eight highest-ranking nations with big defense budgets combined. The reach of America’s military empire includes close to 800 bases in as many as 160 countries, operated at a cost of more than $156 billion annually. As investigative journalist David Vine reports, “Even US military resorts and recreation areas in places like the Bavarian Alps and Seoul, South Korea, are bases of a kind. Worldwide, the military runs more than 170 golf courses.”

Now President Trump wants to increase military spending by $54 billion. Promising “an historic increase in defense spending to rebuild the depleted military of the United States,” Trump has made it clear where his priorities lie, and it’s not with the American taxpayer. As The Nation reports, “On a planet where Americans account for 4.34 percent of the population, US military spending accounts for 37 percent of the global total.”

Add in the cost of waging war in Syria (with or without congressional approval), and the burden on taxpayers soars to more than $11.5 million a day. Ironically, while presidential candidate Trump was vehemently opposed to the U.S. use of force in Syria, as well as harboring Syrian refugees within the U.S., he had no problem retaliating against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on behalf of Syrian children killed in a chemical attack. The cost of launching a 59 Tomahawk missile-strike against Syria? It’s estimated that the missiles alone cost $60 million. Mind you, this is the same man, while campaigning for president, who warned that fighting Syria would signal the start of World War III against a united Syria, Russia and Iran. Already oil prices have started to climb as investors anticipate an extended conflict.

Clearly, war has become a huge money-making venture, and the U.S. government, with its vast military empire, is one of its best buyers and sellers.

Yet what most Americans—brainwashed into believing that patriotism means supporting the war machine—fail to recognize is that these ongoing wars have little to do with keeping the country safe and everything to do with enriching the military industrial complex at taxpayer expense.

The rationale may keep changing for why American military forces are in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan and now Syria. However, the one that remains constant is that those who run the government—including the current president—are feeding the appetite of the military industrial complex and fattening the bank accounts of its investors.

Case in point: President Trump plans to “beef up” military spending while slashing funding for the environment, civil rights protections, the arts, minority-owned businesses, public broadcasting, Amtrak, rural airports and interstates.

In other words, in order to fund this burgeoning military empire that polices the globe, the U.S. government is prepared to bankrupt the nation, jeopardize our servicemen and women, increase the chances of terrorism and blowback domestically, and push the nation that much closer to eventual collapse.

Clearly, our national priorities are in desperate need of an overhauling.

As Los Angeles Times reporter Steve Lopez rightly asks:

Why throw money at defense when everything is falling down around us? Do we need to spend more money on our military (about $600 billion this year) than the next seven countries combined? Do we need 1.4 million active military personnel and 850,000 reserves when the enemy at the moment — ISIS — numbers in the low tens of thousands? If so, it seems there’s something radically wrong with our strategy. Should 55% of the federal government’s discretionary spending go to the military and only 3% to transportation when the toll in American lives is far greater from failing infrastructure than from terrorism? Does California need nearly as many active military bases (31, according to militarybases.com) as it has UC and state university campuses (33)? And does the state need more active duty military personnel (168,000, according to Governing magazine) than public elementary school teachers (139,000)?

Obviously, there are much better uses for your taxpayer funds than trillions of dollars being wasted on war. The following are just a few ways those hard-earned dollars could be used:

  • $120 billion a year to fix the nation’s crumbling infrastructure. With 32% of the nation’s major roadways in poor or mediocre condition, it’s estimated that improving the nation’s roads and bridges would require $120 billion a year through 2020, although it will take “many trillions … to fix the country’s web of roads, bridges, railways, subways and bus stations.”
  • $251 million for safety improvements and construction for Amtrak.
  • $11 billion per year to provide the world—including our own failing cities—with clean drinking water.

As long as “we the people” continue to allow the government to wage its costly, meaningless, endless wars abroad, the American homeland will continue to suffer: our roads will crumble, our bridges will fail, our schools will fall into disrepair, our drinking water will become undrinkable, our communities will destabilize, and crime will rise.

Here’s the kicker, though: if the American economy collapses—and with it the last vestiges of our constitutional republic—it will be the government and its trillion-dollar war budgets that are to blame.

Of course, the government has already anticipated this breakdown.

That’s why the government has transformed America into a war zone, turned the nation into a surveillance state, and labelled “we the people” as enemy combatants.

For years now, the government has worked with the military to prepare for widespread civil unrest brought about by “economic collapse, loss of functioning political and legal order, purposeful domestic resistance or insurgency, pervasive public health emergencies, and catastrophic natural and human disasters.”

Having spent more than half a century exporting war to foreign lands, profiting from war, and creating a national economy seemingly dependent on the spoils of war, the war hawks long ago turned their profit-driven appetites on us, bringing home the spoils of war—the military tanks, grenade launchers, Kevlar helmets, assault rifles, gas masks, ammunition, battering rams, night vision binoculars, etc.—and handing them over to local police, thereby turning America into a battlefield.

This is how the police state wins and “we the people” lose.

Eventually, however, as I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, all military empires fail.

At the height of its power, even the mighty Roman Empire could not stare down a collapsing economy and a burgeoning military. Prolonged periods of war and false economic prosperity largely led to its demise. As historian Chalmers Johnson predicts:

The fate of previous democratic empires suggests that such a conflict is unsustainable and will be resolved in one of two ways. Rome attempted to keep its empire and lost its democracy. Britain chose to remain democratic and in the process let go its empire. Intentionally or not, the people of the United States already are well embarked upon the course of non-democratic empire.

This is the “unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex” that President Dwight Eisenhower warned us more than 50 years ago not to let endanger our liberties or democratic processes. Eisenhower, who served as Supreme Commander of the Allied forces in Europe during World War II, was alarmed by the rise of the profit-driven war machine that emerged following the war—one that, in order to perpetuate itself, would have to keep waging war.

We failed to heed his warning.

Yet as Eisenhower recognized, the consequences of allowing the military-industrial complex to wage war, exhaust our resources and dictate our national priorities are beyond grave:

Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. The cost of one modern heavy bomber is this: a modern brick school in more than 30 cities. It is two electric power plants, each serving a town of 60,000 population. It is two fine, fully equipped hospitals. It is some 50 miles of concrete highway. We pay for a single fighter with a half million bushels of wheat. We pay for a single destroyer with new homes that could have housed more than 8,000 people. This, I repeat, is the best way of life to be found on the road the world has been taking. This is not a way of life at all, in any true sense. Under the cloud of threatening war, it is humanity hanging from a cross of iron.

Wake up, America. There’s not much time left before we reach the zero hour.

Constitutional attorney and author John W. Whitehead is founder and president of The Rutherford Institute. His new book Battlefield America: The War on the American People (SelectBooks, 2015) is available online at http://www.amazon.com. Whitehead can be contacted at johnw@rutherford.org

 

Many Americans are aware of the direct benevolence of the U.S. toward this wealthy foreign nation. What about the opportunity cost of Israel? The wars we fight on its behalf? The ill will that our lopsided and unequivocal support for Israel generates? Under the Kushner-Trump axis this relationship will not change. Israel will remain entitled above the best interests of the U.S. and its own citizens. There must surely be brave American politicians who are well qualified for a chapter Profiles in Courage and will stand up against this morphing of our resources and national policies?

By Philip Giraldi 

April 12, 2017

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) concluded its annual conference late last month, triggering the usual debate in various alternative media outlets. Why does so much U.S. taxpayer money go to a small and not particularly useful client state that has a vibrant European-level economy and is already a regional military colossus?

Those who support the cash flow argue that Israel is threatened, most notably by Iran; they claim the assistance, which has been largely but not completely used to buy American-made weapons, is required to maintain a qualitative edge over the country’s potential enemies. Those who oppose the aid would counter that the Iranian threat is largely an Israeli and Saudi Arabian invention, used to justify continued American support for the national-security policies of both countries. And they would add that Tel Aviv is more than able to defend itself and pay for its own military establishment.

In truth, American aid to Israel is something like a pot of gold that keeps on giving. Both sides in the discussion would probably agree that the domestic Israel Lobby has been instrumental in sustaining the high level of aid, though they would undoubtedly disagree over whether that is a good or bad thing. The operation of “The Lobby,” generally regarded as the most powerful voice on foreign policy in Washington, led Professors Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer to ask, “Why has the U.S. been willing to set aside its own security … in order to advance the interests of another state? [No] explanation can account for the remarkable level of material and diplomatic support that the U.S. provides.” They observed that “Other special interest groups have managed to skew foreign policy, but no lobby has managed to divert it as far from what the national interest would suggest, while simultaneously convincing Americans that U.S. interests and those of the other country—in this case, Israel—are essentially identical.”

Since the foundation of the state of Israel in 1948, it has been “the largest cumulative recipient of U.S. foreign assistance since World War II,”  according to the Congressional Research Service. The United States has provided Israel with $233.7 billion in adjusted for inflation aid between 1948 through the end of 2012, reports Haaretz. Current discussions center on the Obama administration’s memo of understanding with Israel that promised it $38 billion in military assistance over the next 10 years, a considerable sum but nevertheless a total that is far less than what is actually received annually from the United States Treasury and from other American sources.

Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), speaking in the most recent legislative discussion over Israeli aid, stated that the $38 billion should be regarded as a floor, and that Congress should approve additional funds for Israeli defense as needed. It has, in fact, done so. At its most recent meeting, AIPAC announced the latest windfall from America, applauding “the U.S. House of Representatives for significantly bolstering its support of U.S.-Israel missile defense cooperation in the FY 2017 defense appropriations bill. The House appropriated $600.7 million for U.S.-Israel missile defense programs.” And there is a long history of such special funding for Israeli-connected projects. The Iron Dome missile-defense system was largely funded by the United States, to the tune of more than $1 billion. In the 1980s, the Israeli Lavi jet-fighter development program was funded by Washington, costing $2 billion to the U.S. taxpayer before it was terminated over technical and other problems, part of $5.45 billion in Pentagon funding of various Israeli weapons projects through 2002.

The admittedly unreliable former Congressman James Traficant once claimed that “Israel gets $15 billion per year from the American taxpayers.” Indeed, how Israel gets money from the United States is actually quite complex and not very transparent to the American public, going well beyond the check for $3.8 billion handed over at the beginning of the fiscal year on October 1. Even that check, uniquely given to aid recipient Israel as one lump sum on the first day of the year, is manipulated to produce extra revenue. It is normally immediately redeposited with the U.S. Treasury, which then, because it operates on a deficit, borrows the money to pay interest on it as the Israelis draw it down. That interest payment costs the American taxpayer an estimated $100 million more per year. Israel has also been adept at using “loan guarantees,” an issue that may have contributed to the downfall of President George H.W. Bush. The reality is that the loans, totaling $42 billion, are never repaid by Israel, meaning that the United States Treasury picks up the tab on principle and interest, a form of additional assistance. The Bush-era loan amounted to $10 billion.

Department of Defense co-production projects, preferential contracting, “scrapping” or “surplusing” of usable equipment that is then turned over to the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), as well as the forward deployment of military hardware to an Israeli-run base in Israel (used to support local military operations), are considerable benefits to Tel Aviv’s bottom line. Much of this assistance is hidden from view.

In 1992, AIPAC President James Steiner bragged how he “got almost a billion dollars in other goodies [in negotiations with Secretary of State Jim Baker] that people don’t even know about.” In September 2012, Israel’s former commander-in-chief, Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi, admitted at a conference that between 2009 and 2012 American taxpayers had paid for more of his country’s defense budget than had Israeli taxpayers. Those numbers have been disputed, but the fact remains that a considerable portion of the Israeli military spending comes from the United States. It currently is more than 20 percent of the total $16 billion budget, not counting special appropriations.

Through tax exemptions, the U.S. government also subsidizes the coordinated effort to provide additional assistance to Israel. No other lobbying effort to promote the interests of a foreign country benefits in like fashion, and, indeed, most similar groups are required to register under the Foreign Agents Registration Act of 1938, as former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn has learned to his chagrin regarding Turkey.

Most organizations and foundations that might reasonably be considered active parts of the Israel Lobby are generally registered with the Department of the Treasury as 501(c)3 tax-exempt educational foundations. Grant Smith, speaking at a conference on the U.S. and Israel on March 24, explained how the broader Israel Lobby uses this legal framework:

Key U.S. organizations include the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the American Jewish Committee (AJC), the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) and the Anti-Defamation League (ADL). Hundreds more, including a small number of evangelical Christian organizations, play a role within a vast ecosystem that demands unconditional U.S. support for Israel. In the year 2012 the nonprofit wing of the Israel lobby raised $3.7 billion in revenue. They are on track to reach $6.3 billion by 2020. Collectively they employed 14,000 and claimed 350,000 volunteers.

The $3.7 billion raised in 2012 was largely tax exempt and it does not include the billions in private donations that go directly to Israel, as well as the billions in contributions that are regarded as covered by “religious exemptions” for groups that don’t file at all. There are also contributions sent straight to various Israeli-based foundations that are themselves often registered as charities. The Forward magazine investigated 3,600 Jewish tax-exempt charitable foundations in 2014 and determined that they had net assets of $26 billion, $12–14 billion in annual revenue, and “focuse[d] the largest share of [their] donor dollars on Israel.” That share amounted to 38 percent of total income. The Forward adds that it is “an apparatus that benefits massively from the U.S. federal government and many state and local governments, in the form of hundreds of millions of dollars in government grants, billions in tax-deductible donations and billions more in program fees paid for with government funds.”

Some pro-Israel foundations are in-your-face about their goals. The Friends of the Israel Defense Forces, which “Support[s] the wellbeing and education needs of Israel’s brave soldiers,” is a registered tax-exempt charity that conducts fundraisers throughout the United States. Money being fungible, some American Jews have been surprised to learn that the donations that they had presumed were going to what they regard as charitable causes in Israel have instead wound up in expanding the illegal settlements on the West Bank, an objective that they might not support. It was recently reported that Donald Trump’s son-in-law and advisor Jared Kushner has a family foundation that has made donations to Israel, including funding of West Bank settlements, which is illegal under U.S. law.

Israel also benefits in other ways, frequently due to legislative action by Congress. It enjoys free and even preferential trade status with the United States and runs a $9 billion trade surplus per annum. Its companies and parastatal organizations can, without any restrictions, bid on U.S. defense and homeland-security projects—a privilege normally only granted to NATO partners—which has given it dominance in some U.S. law-enforcement, telecommunications, and travel-security sectors. Its involvement in the development and use of classified military technologies developed by U.S. arms producers has sometimes led to claims that Israel has adopted and adapted—or even stolen—proprietary information and then used it to develop its own arms industry, which is now ranked sixth in the world by volume of sales. Ironically, U.S. taxpayers have subsidized an Israeli industry that then competes directly with American companies, producing a loss of jobs in the United States.

There has also been considerable collateral damage derived from the relationship with Israel, including the Arab Oil embargo and possibly even some blame for the ruinous cost of Iraq, which many believe to have been fought in part for Israel. But even without that war, the U.S.-Israeli bilateral relationship has been an expensive proposition for Americans. Whether Israel is a strategic liability or not, or whether its complicated geostrategic situation merits virtually unquestioning support from the United States, the reality is that it has a lopsided relationship with Washington. This has long been and continues to be largely paid for by the United States taxpayer, who is not as well off as he once was.

The U.S.-Israel relationship is yet another instance where the perceived needs of an American “ally” take precedence over genuine national interests. Tens of billions of dollars need not necessarily be spent to placate a wealthy foreign country and its powerful domestic lobby. Indeed, other options to employ the money closer to home—in the form of schools, highways, and hospitals—may become increasingly attractive to American voters.

Philip Giraldi, a former CIA officer, is executive director of the Council for the National Interest.

 

 

The Deep State-controlled mainstream press and Neocons are peddling war and propaganda AGAIN.

April 11, 2017

via THE SAKER

The latest US cruise missile attack on the Syrian airbase is an extremely important event in so many ways that it is important to examine it in some detail.  I will try to do this today with the hope to be able to shed some light on a rather bizarre attack which will nevertheless have profound consequences.  But first, let’s begin by looking at what actually happened.

The pretext:

I don’t think that anybody seriously believes that Assad or anybody else in the Syrian government really ordered a chemical weapons attack on anybody.  To believe that it would require you to find the following sequence logical: first, Assad pretty much wins the war against Daesh which is in full retreat.  Then, the US declares that overthrowing Assad is not a priority anymore (up to here this is all factual and true).  Then, Assad decides to use weapons he does not have.  He decides to bomb a location with no military value, but with lots of kids and cameras.  Then, when the Russians demand a full investigation, the Americans strike as fast as they can before this idea gets any support.  And now the Americans are probing a possible Russian role in this so-called attack.  Frankly, if you believe any of that, you should immediately stop reading and go back to watching TV.  For the rest of us, there are three options:

  1. a classical US-executed false flag
  2. a Syrian strike on a location which happened to be storing some kind of gas, possibly chlorine, but most definitely not sarin.  This option requires you to believe in coincidences.  I don’t.  Unless,
  3. the US fed bad intelligence to the Syrians and got them to bomb a location where the US knew that toxic gas was stored.

What is evident is that the Syrians did not drop chemical weapons from their aircraft and that no chemical gas was ever stored at the al-Shayrat airbase.  There is no footage showing any munitions or containers which would have delivered the toxic gas.  As for US and other radar recordings, all they can show is that an aircraft was in the sky, its heading, altitude and speed.  There is no way to distinguish a chemical munition or a chemical attack by means of radar.

Whatever option you chose, the Syrian government is obviously and self-evidently innocent of the accusation of having used chemical weapons. This is most likely a false flag attack.

Also, and just for the record, the US had been considering exactly such a false flag attack in the past.  You can read everything about this plan here and here.

The attack:

American and Russian sources both agree on the following facts: 2 USN ships launched 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles at the Al Shayrat airfield in Syria.  The US did not consult with the Russians on a political level, but through military channels the US gave Russia 2 hours advance warning.  At this point the accounts begin to differ.

The Americans say that all missiles hit their targets.  The Russians say that only 23 cruise missiles hit the airfield.  The others are “unaccounted for”.  Here I think that it is indisputable that the Americans are lying and the Russians are saying the truth: the main runway is intact (the Russian reporters provided footage proving this) and only one taxiway was hit.  Furthermore, the Syrian Air Force resumed its operations within 24 hours.  36 cruise missiles have not reached their intended target.  That is a fact.

It is also indisputable that there were no chemical munitions at this base as nobody, neither the Syrians nor the Russian reporters, had to wear any protective gear.

The missiles used in the attack, the Tomahawk, can use any combination of three guidance systems: GPS, inertial navigation and terrain mapping.  There is no evidence and even no reports that the Russians shot even a single air-defense missile.  In fact, the Russians had signed a memorandum with the USA which specifically comitting Russia NOT to interfere with any US overflights, manned or not, over Syria (and vice versa).  While the Tomahawk cruise missile was developed in the 1980s, there is no reason to believe that the missiles used had exceeded their shelf live and there is even evidence that they were built in 2014.  The Tomahawk is known to be accurate and reliable.  There is absolutely no basis to suspect that over half of the missiles fired simply spontaneously malfunctioned.  I therefore see only two possible explanations for what happened to the 36 missing cruise missiles:

Explanation A: Trump never intended to really hit the Syrians hard and this entire attack was just “for show” and the USN deliberately destroyed these missiles over the Mediterranean.  That would make it possible for Trump to appear tough while not inflicting the kind of damage which would truly wreck his plans to collaborate with Russia.  I do not believe in this explanation and I will explain  why in the political analysis below.

Explanation B: The Russians could not legally shoot down the US missiles.  Furthermore, it is incorrect to assume that these cruise missiles flew a direct course from the Mediterranean to their target (thereby almost overflying the Russian radar positions).  Tomahawk were specifically built to be able to fly tangential courses around some radar types and they also have a very low RCS (radar visibility), especially in the frontal sector.  Some of these missiles were probably flying low enough not to be seen by Russian radars, unless the Russians had an AWACS in the air (I don’t know if they did).  However, since the Russians were warned about the attack they had plenty of time to prepare their electronic warfare stations to “fry” and otherwise disable at least part of the cruise missiles.  I do believe that this is the correct explanation.  I do not know whether the Russian were technically unable to destroy and confuse the 23 missiles which reached the base or whether a political decision was taken to let less than half of the cruise missiles through in order to disguise the Russian role in the destruction of 36 missiles.  What I am sure of is that 36 advanced cruise missile do not “just disappear”.  There are two reasons why the Russians would have decided to use their EW systems and not their missiles: first, it provides them “plausible deninability” (at least for the general public, there is no doubt that  US signal intelligence units did detect the Russian electronic interference (unless it happened at very low power and very high frequency and far away inland), and because by using EW systems it allowed them to keep their  air defense missiles for the protection of their own forces.  Can the Russian really do this?

Take a look at this image, taken from a Russian website, which appears to have been made by the company Kret which produces some of the key Russian electronic warfare systems.  Do you notice that on the left hand side, right under the AWACs aircraft you can clearly see a Tomahawk type missile turning around and eventually exploding at sea?

How this is done is open to conjecture. All that we are told is that the missile is given a “false target” but for our purposes this really does not matter.  What matters is that the Russians have basically leaked the information that they are capable of turning cruise missiles around.  There are other possibilities such as an directed energy beams which basically fries or, at least, confuses the terrain following and or inertial navigation systems.  Some have suggested a “kill switch” which would shut down the entire missile.  Maybe.  Again, this really doesn’t matter for our purposes.  What matters is that the Russian have the means to spoof, redirect or destroy US cruise missiles.  It sure appears to be that for the first time these systems were used in anger.

[Sidebar: for those interested in seeing what such a system looks like here is a short video made by the Russians themselves showing how such a system is deployed and operated:

In terms of technical details, or we are told that this system can jam any airborne object at a distance of 200km]

I would note that those who say that the Russian air defense systems did not work don’t know what they are talking about.  Not only did Russia sign an agreement with the US not to interfere with US flight operations, the Russian air defenses in Syria are NOT tasked with the protection of the Syrian Air Space.  That is a task for the Syrian air defenses.  The Russians air defenses in Syria are only here to protect Russian personnel and equipment.  This is why the Russians never targeted Israeli warplanes.  And this is hardly surprising as the Russian task force in Syria never had the mission to shut down the Syrian air space or, even less so, to start a war with the USA or Israel.

However, this might be changing.  Now the Russians have withdrawn from their agreement with the USA and, even more importantly, have have declared that the Syrians urgently need more advanced air defense capabilities.  Currently the Syrians operate very few advanced Russian air defense systems, most of their gear is old.

Legal aspects of the attack:

The US attack happened in direct violation of US law, of international law and of the UN charter.  First, I would say that there is strong legal evidence that the US attack violated the US Constitution,  Presidential War Powers Act and the 2001 Authorization of Military Force (AUMF) resolution.  But since I don’t really care about this aspect of Trump’s criminal behavior, I will just refer you to two pretty good analyses of this issue (see here and here) and just simply summarize the argument of those who say that what Trump did was legal.  It boils down to this: “yeah, it’s illegal, but all US Presidents have been doing it for so long that they have thereby created a legal precedent which, uh, makes it legal after all“.  I don’t think this kind of “defense” is worthy of a reply or rebuttal.  So now let’s turn to international law.

Most people think that crimes against humanity or genocide must be the ultimate crime under international law.  They are wrong.  The ultimate crime is aggression.  This is the conclusion of the Nuremberg Trial on this topic:

To initiate a war of aggression, therefore, is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole.

So, following the long and prestigious list of other US Presidents before him, Donald Trump is now a war criminal.  In fact, he is a “supreme war criminal”.  It only took him 77 days to achieve this status, probably some kind of a record.

As for the UN Charter, at least for articles (1, 2, 33, 39) ban the kind of aggression the USA took against Syria.

I think that there is no need to dwell on the total illegality of this attack.  I would just underscore the supreme irony of a country basically built by and run by lawyers (just see how many of them there are in Congress) whose general population seems to be totally indifferent to the fact that their elected representatives act in a completely illegal manner.  All that most American people care about is whether the illegal action brings victory or not.  But if it does, absolutely nobody cares.  You disagree?  Tell me, how many peace demonstrations were there in the USA about the totally illegal US aggression on Yugoslavia?  Exactly.  QED.

Political consequences (internal)

My son perfectly summed up what Trump’s actions have resulted in: “those who hated him still hate him while those who supported him now also hate him“.  Wow!  How did Trump and his advisors fail to predict that?  Instead of fulfilling his numerous campaign promises (and his own Twitter statements) Trump decided to suddenly make a 180 and totally betray everything he stood for.  I can’t think of a dumber action, I really can’t.  I have to say that Trump now appears to make Dubya look smart.  But there is much, much worse.

The worst aspect of this clusterf**k is how utterly immoral this makes Trump appear.  Think of it – first Trump abjectly betrayed Flynn.  Then he betrayed Bannon.

[Sidebar: I mostly liked Flynn.  I had no use for Bannon at all.  But the fact is that they were not my best friends, they were Trump’s best friends.  And instead of standing up for them, he sacrificed them to the always bloodthirsty Neocons in the hope of appeasing them.  This is what I wrote about this stupid and deeply immoral betrayal the day it happened:

Remember how Obama showed his true face when he hypocritically denounced his friend and pastor Rev. Jeremiah Wright Jr.?  Today, Trump has shown us his true face.  Instead of refusing Flynn’s resignation and instead of firing those who dared cook up these ridiculous accusations against Flynn, Trump accepted the resignation.  This is not only an act of abject cowardice, it is also an amazingly stupid and self-defeating betrayal because now Trump will be alone, completely alone, facing the likes of Mattis and Pence – hard Cold Warrior types, ideological to the core, folks who want war and simply don’t care about reality.

The worst aspect of that is that by betraying people left and right Trump has now shown that you cannot trust him, that he will backstab you with no hesitation whatsoever.  Would you ever take a risk for a guy like that?  Contrast that with Putin who is “notorious” for standing by his friends and allies even when they do something really wrong!  There is a reason why the AngloZionists could not break Putin and why it only took them one month to neuter Trump: Putin is made of titanium, Trump is just an overcooked noodle]

And now Trump has betrayed HIMSELF by turning against everything he, himself, stood for.  This is almost Shakespearean in its pathetic and tragic aspects!

During his campaign Trump made a lot of excellent promises and he did inspire millions of Americans to support him.  I personally believe that he was sincere in his intentions, and I don’t buy the “it was all an act” theory at all.  Just look at the total panic of the Neocons at the prospects of a Trump victory and tell me this was all fake.  No, I think that Trump was sincere.  But when confronted with the ruthless opposition of the Neocons and the US deep state, Trump snapped and instantly broke because he is clearly completely spineless and has the ethics and morals of a trailer park prostitute.

So what we really have is a sad and pathetic version of Obama. A kind of Obama 2.0 if you want.  The man inspired millions, he promised change you can believe in, and he delivered absolutely nothing except for an abject subservience to the real masters and owners of the United States: the Neocons and the deep state.

Trump did get what he apparently wanted, though: the very same corporate media which he claimed to despise is now praising him.  And nobody is calling him a “Putin agent” any more.  None of which will prevent the Neocons from impeaching him, by the way.  He chose a quickfix solution which will stop acting in just days.  How totally stupid of him.  He apparently also chose the option of an “attack for show” to begin with, which turned into one of the most pathetic attacks in history, probably courtesy of Russian EW, and now that the USA has wasted something in the range of 100 million dollars, what does Trump have to show?  A few flattering articles from the media which he has always hated and which will return to hate him as soon as ordered to do so by its Neocon masters.  Pathetic if you ask me.

Ever since he got into the White House, Trump has been acting like your prototypical appeaser (it makes me wonder if his father was an alcoholic).  How a guy like him ever made in business is a mystery to me, but what is now clear is that the Neocons totally submitted him and that they will now turn him into political roadkill.

I am afraid that the next four years (or less!) will turn into a neverending Purim celebration…

Political consequences (external)

Trump has single handedly destroyed any hopes of a US collaboration with Russia of any kind.  Worse, he has also destroyed any hopes of being able to defeat Daesh.  Why?  Because if you really believe that Daesh can be defeated without Russian and Iranian support I want to sell you bridges all over the world.  It ain’t happening.  What is much, much worse is that now we are again on a pre-war situation, just as we were with Obama and would have been with Clinton.  Let me explain.

The following are the measures with Russia has taken following the US attack on Syria:

  1. Denunciation at UN (to be expected, no big deal)
  2. Decision to strengthen the Syrian air defenses (big deal, that will give the Syrians the means to lock their airspace)
  3. Decision to cancel the Memorandum with the USA (now the Russians in Syria will have the right to decide whether to shoot or not)
  4. Decision to shut down the phone hot line with the US military (now the US won’t be able to call the Russians to ask them to do or not do something)

The combination of decisions 2, 3 and  4 does not mean that the Russians will shoot the next time, not by itself.  The Russians will still be restricted by their own rules of engagement and by political decisions.  But this will dramatically affect the US decision-making since from now on there will be no guarantee that the Russians will not shoot either.  The Russians basically own the Syrian airspace already.  What they want to do next is to give a similar capability to the Syrians.  Not only will that allow the Syrians to defend themselves against any future US or Israeli attacks, it will provide the Russians plausible deniabilty the day they decide to shoot down a US aircraft or drone.  Finally, the Russians are rushing back some of their most advanced ships towards the Syrian coast.  So after giving Trump the benefit of the doubt, the Russians are now returning to a Obama-times like posture in Syria.  Bravo Trump, well done!

Yes, I know, Tillerson is expected to meet Lavrov this week.  This was discussed ad nauseam on Russian TV and the consensus is that the only reason why the Russians did not cancel this meeting is because they don’t want, on general principle, to be the ones to refuse to speak to the other side.  Fine.  Considering that we are talking about a potential international thermonuclear war, I can see the point.  Still, I would have preferred to say Lavrov telling Tillerson to go and get lost.  Why?  Because I have come to the conclusion that any and all types of dialog with the United States are simply a meaningless and useless waste of time.  For one thing, there is no US policy on anything.  Over the past week or so we saw both Nikki Haley and Rex Tillerson completely contradict themselves over and over again: “no we don’t want to overthrow Assad.  Yes we do want to overthrow Assad.  Yes we do. No we don’t“.  This is almost painful and embarrassing to watch.  This just goes to show that just like the Obama Administration, the Trump people are “недоговороспособны” or “not agreement capable”.  I explain this term in this analysis (written about Obama!  Not Trump):

The Russians expressed their total disgust and outrage at this attack and openly began saying that the Americans were “недоговороспособны”.  What that word means is literally “not-agreement-capable” or unable to make and then abide by an agreement.  While polite, this expression is also extremely strong as it implies not so much a deliberate deception as the lack of the very ability to make a deal and abide by it.  For example, the Russians have often said that the Kiev regime is “not-agreement-capable”, and that makes sense considering that the Nazi occupied Ukraine is essentially a failed state.  But to say that a nuclear world superpower is “not-agreement-capable” is a terrible and extreme diagnostic.  It basically means that the Americans have gone crazy and lost the very ability to make any kind of deal.  Again, a government which breaks its promises or tries to deceive but who, at least in theory, remains capable of sticking to an agreement would not be described as “not-agreement-capable”.  That expression is only used to describe an entity which does not even have the skillset needed to negotiate and stick to an agreement in its political toolkit.  This is an absolutely devastating diagnostic.

This is bad.  Really bad.  This means that the Russians have basically given up on the notion of having an adult, sober and mentally sane partner to have a dialog with.  What this also means is that while remaining very polite and externally poker faced, the Russians have now concluded that they need to simply assume that they need to act either alone or with other partners and basically give up on the United States.

That applies only to the official Kremlin.  Independent Russian analysts are not shy about expressing their total contempt and disgust for Trump.  Some of them are suggesting that Trump decided to show how “tough” he is in preparation for the Tillerson trip to Moscow.  If that is the case, then he is badly miscalculating.  For one thing, a lot of them as saying that what Trump has engaged in is “показуха” – a totally fake shows of force which really shows nothing.  What is certain is that demonstrations of force are very much frowned upon on the Russian culture which strongly believes that a really tough guy does not have to look the part.

[Sidebar: if John Wayne is the prototypical American hero, Danilo Bagrov, from the movies “Brother” and its sequel “Brother 2” is the prototypical Russian hero: rather shy, softly spoken, of modest means, a times charmingly clumsy and naive, but in reality “the toughest of us all” (as he is called by another character in the sequel (if you have not seen these two movies, I highly recommend them though I don’t know if they exist with English subtitles (dubbing them would be a crime)).

American hero and Russian hero

What is sure is that the John Wayne types would never survive in the Russian street, they would be immediately perceived as fake, weak and showing off to try to conceal their lack of strength and they would be crushed and humiliated.  Nowadays when Americans adopt what I call the “Delta Force/Blackwater style” (pointy beard, long hair, dark sunglasses, and a ton of muscles etc.) they look comical by Russian standards,  Russian special forces (and I have met a lot of them) *never* look the part if only because they try hard not to look it].

Personally I don’t think that impressing the Russians was Trump’s plan.  Nor do I believe, like some, that launching that attack during the visit of Chinese Premier Xi was a deliberate affront or some kind of “message”.  In fact, I don’t think that there was much of a plan at all beyond showing that Trump is “tough” and no friend of Putin.  That’s it.  I think that the so-called “elites” in charge running the USA are infinitely arrogant, stupid, uneducated, incompetent and irresponsible.  I don’t buy the “managed chaos” theory nor do I buy the notion that if before the Anglo-Zionists imposed their order on others now they impose their dis-order.  Yes, that is the consequence of their actions, but it’s not part of some diabolical plan, it is a sign of terminal degeneracy of an Empire which is clueless, frightened, angry and arrogant.

I have already explained in my previous analysis why Trump’s plan to defeat ISIS is a non-starter and I won’t bother repeating it all here.  What I will say is that Erdogan’s endorsement of Trump’s attack is equally stupid and self-defeating.  I really wonder what Erdogan is hoping to achieve.  Not only did the Americans almost kill him in a coup attempt, they are now working on creating a semi-independent Kurdistan right on the border with Turkey.  Yes, I know, Erdogan wants to get rid of Assad, fair enough, but does he really believe that Trump will be able to remove Assad from power?  And what if Assad is removed, will Turkey really be better off once the Emirate of Takfiristan is declared in Syria? I very much hope that after the referendum Erdogan will recover some sense of reality.

What about the Israelis, do they really believe that dealing with Assad is worse than dealing with this Caliphate of Takfiristan?!  But then, we can expect anything from folks with such a long history of making really bad decisions.

Still, it really looks like the all have gone completely insane!

Then there is the embarrassing standing ovation coming out of Europe and the Ukraine.  I really am embarrassed for them.  They are rejoicing at the attempted removal of one of the last mentally sane and secular regimes in the Middle-East.  Don’t these European “leaders” realize that if Syria is replaced by a Caliphate of Takfiristan all hell will really brake loose for Europe?  I am amazed at how blind these people are…

The US’ “subtle hint” to the DPRK and China

Now let’s look at what happened from the point of view of China and the DPRK.  First, as I mentioned, I don’t think that Xi felt that the attack during his visit to the USA was a slap or an affront.  From another civilized country, maybe.  But  not from the USA.  The Chinese are absolutely under no illusion of the total lack of sophistication and even basic manners of US Presidents.  That is not to say that they were not outraged and very concerned.  It goes without saying that they also noticed the “coincidence” that The USN has canceled planned port calls in Australia for the USS Carl Vinson and is instead sending the aircraft carrier and attached group towards the Korean Peninsula.  They also noticed that this move has been given maximal visibility in the US propaganda machine.  One “show of force” in Syria is now followed by another “show of force” in East Asia.

Typical, isn’t it?

If anything, this move will only strengthen the informal but very strong and deep partnership between China and Russia.  Just like the Russians, the Chinese will keep on smiling and make very nice statements about international peace and security, negotiations, etc.  But everybody who matters in China will understand that the real message of out Washington DC is simple: “now it’s Assad – but you could be next”.

Which leaves the DPRK.  I am no mind-reader and no psychologist, but I ask myself the following question: what is worse – if the Americans fail to really scare Kim Jong-un or if they successfully do?  I don’t have the answer, but considering the past behavior of the DPRK leaders I would strongly suggest that both scaring them and failing to scare them are very dangerous options.  The notion of “scare” should not be included in any policies dealing with the DPRK.  But instead of that, the dummies in DC are now leaking a story (whether true or not) that the US intelligence agencies have finalized plans to, I kid you not, “eliminate Kim Jong-un“.  And just to make sure that the message gets through, the latest US harpy at the UNSC threatens the DPRK with war.

Have they all really gone totally insane in Washington DC?

Do I really need to explain here why war with the DPRK is a terrible idea, even if it had no nuclear weapons?

Conclusion: what happens next?

Simply reply: I don’t know.  But let me explain why I don’t know.  In all my years of training and work as a military analyst I have always had to assume that everybody involved was what we called a “rational actor”.  The Soviets sure where.  As where the Americans.  Then, starting with Obama more and more often I had to question that assumption as the US engaged in what appeared to be crazy and self-defeating actions.  You tell me – how does deterrence work on a person with no self-preservation instinct (whether as a result of infinite imperial hubris garden variety petty arrogance, crass ignorance or plain stupidity)?  I don’t know.  To answer that question a what is needed is not a military analyst, but some kind of shrink specializing in delusional and suicidal types.

Some readers might think that this is hyperbole.  I assure you that this is not.  I am dead serious.  Not only do I find the Trump administration “not agreement capable”, I find it completely detached from reality.  Delusional in other words.  You think Kim Jong-un with nukes is bad?  What about Obama or Trump with nukes?  Ain’t they much, much scarier?

So what can the world do?

First, the easy answer: the Europeans.  They can do nothing.  They are irrelevant.  They don’t even exist.  At least not in the political sense.

Some countries, however, are showing an absolutely amazing level of courage.   Look at what the Bolivian representative at the UNSC dared to do:

Bolivia: a profile in courage

And what a shame for Europe: a small and poor country like Bolivia showed more dignity that the entire European continent.  No wonder the Russians have no respect for the EU whatsoever.

What Bolivia did is both beautiful and noble.  But the two countries which really need to step up to the plate are Russia and China.  So far, it has been Russia who did all the hard work and, paradoxically, it has been Russia which has been the object of the dumbest and most ungrateful lack of gratitude (especially from armchair warriors).  This needs to change.  China has many more means to pressure the USA back into some semi-sane mental state than Russia.  All Russia has are superb military capabilities.  China, in contrast, has the ability to hurt the USA where it really matters: money.  Russia is in a pickle: she cannot abandon Syria to the Takfiri crazies, but neither can she go to nuclear war with the USA over Syria.  The problem is not Assad.  The problem is that he is the only person capable, at least at this point in time, to protect Syria against Daesh.  If Assad is removed, Syria falls and Iran is next.  Russia absolutely cannot afford to have Iran destroyed by the Anglo-Zionists because after Iran, she will next.  Everybody in Russia understands that.  But, as I said, the problem with military responses is that they can lead to military escalations which then lead to wars which might turn nuclear very fast.  So here is my central thesis:

You don’t want Russia to stop the USA by purely military means as this places the survival of of mankind at risk.

I realize that for some this might be counter-intuitive, but remember that deterrences only works with rational actors.  Russia has already done a lot, more than everybody else besides Iran.  And if Russia is not the world’s policeman, neither is she the world savior.  The rest of mankind also needs to stop being a silent bystander and actually do something!

Russia and China can stop the US, but they need to do that together. And for that, Xi needs to stop acting like a detached smiling little Buddha statue and speak up loud and clear.  That is especially true since the Americans show even less fear of China than of Russia.

[Sidebar: the Chinese military is still far behind the kind of capabilities Russia has, but the Chinese are catching up really, really fast.  Just 30 years ago the Chinese military used to be outdated and primitive.  This is not the case today.  The Chinese have done some tremendous progress in a record time and their military is now a totally different beast than what it used to be.  I have no doubt at all that the US cannot win a war with China either, especially not anywhere near the Chinese mainland.  Furthermore, I expect the Chinese to go full steam ahead with a very energetic military modernization program which will allow them to close the gap with the USA and Russia in record time.  So any notions of the USA using force against China, be it over Taiwan or the DPRK, is an absolutely terrible idea, sheer madness.  However, and maybe because the Americans believe their own propaganda, it seems to me like the folks in DC think that we are in the 1950s or 1960 and that they can terrify the “Chinese communist peasants” with their carrier battle groups.  What the fail to realize is that with every nautical mile the US carriers make towards China, the bigger and easier target they make for a military which has specialized in US carrier destruction operatons.  The Americans ought to ask themselves a simple question: what will they do if the Chinese either sink or severely damage one (or several) US Navy carriers?  Go to nuclear war with a nuclear China well capable of turning many US cities into nuclear wastelands?  Really? You would trade New York or San Francisco for the Carl Vinson Strike Group?  Think again.]

So far China has been supporting Russia, but only from behind Russia.  This is very nice and very prudent, but Russia is rapidly running out of resources.  If there was a sane man in the White House, one who would never ever do something which might result in war with Russia, that would not be a problem.  Alas, just like Obama before him, Trump seems to think that he can win a game of nuclear chicken against Russia.  But he can’t.  Let me be clear he: if pushed into a corner the Russian will fight, even if that means nuclear war.  I have said this over and over again, there are two differences between the Americans and the Russians

  1. The Russians are afraid of war.  The Americans are not.
  2. The Russians are ready for war.  The Americans are not.

The problem is that every sign of Russian caution and every Russian attempt to de-escalate the situation (be it in the Ukraine, with Turkey or in Syria) has always been interpreted by the West as a sign of weakness.  This is what happens when there is a clash between a culture which places a premium on boasting and threatening and one which believes in diplomacy and negotiations.

[Sidebar.  The profound cultural differences between the USA and Russia are perfectly illustrated with the polar difference the two countries have towards their most advanced weapons systems.  As soon as the Americans declassify one of their weapon systems they engage into a huge marketing campaign to describe it as the “bestest of the bestest” “in the world” (always, “in the world” as if somebody bothered to research this or even compare).  They explain at length how awesome their technology is and how invincible it makes them.  The perfect illustration is all the (now, in retrospect, rather ridiculous) propaganda about stealth and stealth aircraft.  The Russians do the exact opposite.  First, they try to classify it all.  But then, when eventually they declassify a weapons system, they strenuously under-report its real capabilities even when it is quite clear that the entire planet already knows the truth!  There have been any instances when Soviet disarmament negotiators knew less about the real Soviet capabilities than their American counterparts!  Finally, when the Russian export their weapons systems, they always strongly degrade the export model, at least that was the model until the Russians sold the SU-30MKI to India which included thrust vectoring while the Russian SU-30 only acquired later with the SU-30SM model, so this might be changing.  Ask yourself: did you ever hear about the Russian Kalibr cruise missile before their first use in Syria?  Or did you know that Russia has had nuclear underwater missiles since the late 1970s capable of “flying under water” as speeds exceeding 230 miles per hour?]

Russia is in a very difficult situation and a very bad one.  And she is very much alone.  European are cowards.  Latin Americans have more courage, but no means to put pressure on the USA.  India hopes to play both sides.  Japan and the ROK are US colonies.  Australia and New Zealand belong to the ECHELON/FIVE EYES gang.  Russia has plenty of friends in Africa, but they more or less all live under the American/French boot. Iran has already sacrificed more than any other country and taken the biggest risks.  It would be totally unfair to ask the Iranians to do more.  The only actor out there who can do something in China.  If there is any hopes to avoid four more years of “Obama-style nightmare” it is for China to step in and tell the US to cool it.

In the meantime Russia will walk a very fine like between various bad options.  Her best hope, and the best hope of the rest of mankind, is that the US elites become so involved into fighting each other that this will leave very little time to do any foreign policy.  Alas, it appears that Trump has “figured out” that one way to be smart (or so he thinks) in internal politics is to do something dumb in external politics (like attack Syria).  That won’t work.

Maybe an impeachment of Trump could prove to be a blessing in disguise.  If Mike Pence becomes President, he and his Neocons will have total power again and they won’t have to prove that they are tough by doing stupid and dangerous things?  Could President Pence be better than President Trump?  I am afraid that it might.  Especially if that triggers a deep internal crisis inside the USA.

Is she the last hope for the USA?

The next four years will be terrible, I am sorry to say.  Our next hope – however thin – for somebody sane in the White House might be for 2020.  Maybe Tulsi Gabbard will run on a campaign promise of peace and truly draining the swamp?  Maybe “America first” will mean something if Gabbard says it?  Right now she seems to be pretty much the only one refusing the accept the “Assad did it” nonsense.  So maybe she can provide the mix of peace and progressive social policies so many Americans really want?  Maybe she could become the first woman President for all the right, rather then wrong, reasons. I don’t know.  2020 is still very, very far away, let’s just hope we all make it to that date before some imbecile in DC decides that war with Russia is a good idea.

What is certain is that the Democrat vs. Republican and Conservative vs Liberal dichotomy only serves to perpetuate a system which manages to betray the values of BOTH the Left and the Right.  This is paradoxical because it is pretty darn clear that most Americans want their country to be at peace, to stop being constantly at war, and with civilized social and labor standards.  Sure, the hardcore libertarians still believe that laisser-faire is a great solution, even if that hands all the power to corporations and even if that leaves the individual citizen defenseless against the oligarchy.  But bet you that even hardcore libertarians would prefer “statism” (as they would say) with peace than “statism” with war.  Likewise, many hardcore progressives want to severely limit the freedoms of many Americans (small business entrepreneurs, gun owners), but even they would prefer peace without rules and regulations than war without rules and regulations.  So I think that the possibly unifying platform could be expressed in the notion of “peace and civil rights”.  That is something which the vast majority of Americans can agree upon.  Even the Black Lives Matter folks should agree to that kind of “peace and civil rights platform”.  That, I think, ought to be the priority of the Federal government – dismantle the war machine and dismantle the state repression machine: a full pull-out of US forces deployed worldwide combined with a full restoration of civil and human rights as they were before the 9/11 false flag.  And let the States deal with all the other issues.

Alas, I am afraid that the plutocracy in power will never allow that.  The way the crushed Trump in one month tells me that they will do that to anybody who is not one of their own.  So while hope is always a good thing, and while I like dreaming of a better future, I am not holding my breath.  I find a sudden and brutal collapse of the Anglo-Zionist Empire followed by a break-up of the USA (as described here) far more likely.

We better prepare ourselves for some very tough times ahead.

Our only consolation is that all the dramatic events taking place right now in the USA are signs of weakness.  The US elites are turning on each other and while the Neocons have broken Trump, this will not stop the fratricidal war inside the US plutocracy.   Look at the big picture, at how the empire is cracking at every seam and remember that all this is taking place because we are winning.

Imperialism will die, discredited and hated by all those who will have to live through the upcoming collapse of the US-based AngloZionist Empire.  Hopefully this time it will be the last empire in history and mankind will have learned its lesson (it would be about time!).

The Saker