By Vladimir Suchan
April 8, 2017
Politically the most significant fact about Trump’s strike on the Syrian base is that it was also a Russian military base and that the 59 US missiles were dropped on the heads of the Russian soldiers as well: That’s why this is a watershed event, but, because of this, neither the White House wants to emphasize this much or gloat over this yet and the Kremlin has to try to look as the Russian presence was not much of a presence or that much important anyway–better not to talk about it; but the message was delivered.
To save himself from impeachment over “the Russian connection,” Trump bombed the Syrians and 100 Russians at the base. It might have worked.
US military sources (reported on US networks, i.e. Fox News) say about 100 Russian soldiers were present at the Syrian airbase during the attack ordered by President Trump. The Kremlin was informed. But the Russian personnel at the Syrian base remained. Possibly in the dark.
Conway Kellyanne @KellyannePolls on Fox News tonight: By bombing Syrians who are under attack by al Qaeda, ISIS, President Trump acted like “a true father and a grandfather” …. like a true Godfather of al Qaeda.
Trump’s spokesman Sean Spicer on Fox News: His bombing of brave Syria fighting a long war against al Qaeda+ISIS was for Trump “pleasing and gratifying.”
After bombing Syria over videos staged by al Qaeda, Washington’s political establishment, i.e. the machines of the both parties whom he upset, has re-adopted and welcomed Trump as their lost, but newly found son who has just recovered from his notion and temporary insanity of “power to the people.” He is again safely one of them. The swamp and the order in the universe has been reestablished.
By Tyler Durden
March 12, 2017
Ron Paul, the prominent libertarian communicator and three-time US presidential candidate, declared this week in a Fox Business interview that it is “fantastic” that WikiLeaks revealed on Tuesday thousands of US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) documents and files.
Speaking with host Kennedy, Paul further says that the information exposed “indicates that liberty is in big trouble” and states his concern about there having been insufficient media coverage of the information and outlines the potential dangers related to technology…
Paul’s discussion raises the very crucial question “do we live in a police state?” As AntiWar’s Justin Raimondo warns, the latest wikileaks revelations tell us the answer is ‘Yes’.
WikiLeaks and Julian Assange would have gone down in history as the greatest enemies of government oppression of all kinds in any case, but their latest release – a comprehensive exposé of the US intelligence community’s cyberwar tools and techniques – is truly the capstone of their career. And given that this release – dubbed “Vault 7” – amounts to just one percent of the documents they intend to publish, one can only look forward to the coming days with a mixture of joyful anticipation and ominous fear.
Fear because the power of the Deep State is even more forbidding – and seemingly invincible – than anyone knew. Joyful anticipation because, for the first time, it is dawning on the most unlikely people that we are, for all intents and purposes, living in a police state. I was struck by this while watching Sean Hannity’s show last [Wednesday] night – yes, Fox is my go-to news channel – and listening to both Hannity and his guests, including the ultra-conservative Laura Ingraham, inveigh against the “Deep State.” For people like Hannity, Ingraham, and Newt Gingrich (of all people!) to be talking about the Surveillance State with fear – and outrage – in their voices says two things about our current predicament: 1) Due to the heroic efforts of Julian Assange in exposing the power and ruthlessness of the Deep State, the political landscape in this country is undergoing a major realignment, with conservatives returning to their historic role as the greatest defenders of civil liberties, and 2) American “liberalism” – which now champions the Deep State as the savior of the country – has become a toxic brew that is fundamentally totalitarian.
On the first point: yes, there are more than a few holdouts, like Bill O’Reilly and the neocons, but the latter are increasingly isolated, and the former is increasingly irrelevant. What we are seeing, as the role of the “intelligence community” in basically leading a seditious conspiracy against a sitting President is revealed, is a complete switch in the political polarities in this country: what passes for the “left” has become the biggest advocate of the Surveillance State, and the rising populist right is coming to the hard-won conclusion that we are rapidly becoming a police state.
Ah, but wait! That’s not the whole story: bear with me for a while.
The material in “Vault 7” is extensive: it ranges from examining the ways in which a Samsung television set that is seemingly turned off can be– and no doubt has been – used to spy on the conversations and activities of a room’s occupants, to the various ways in which our spooks infiltrate and subvert common electronic devices, such as the I-Phone, in order to gather information. “Infected phones,” we are told in the introduction to the material, “can be instructed to send the CIA the user’s geolocation, audio and text communications as well as covertly activate the phone’s camera and microphone.” The CIA is even working on remotely controlling the electronic steering systems installed in cars – a perfect route to pulling off an assassination that looks like an “accident.” Not that the intelligence services of the “leader of the Free World” would ever consider such an act.
The massive infection of commonly used software and electronic devices leads to a major problem: proliferation. As these viruses and other invasive programs are unleashed on an unsuspecting public, they fall into the hands of a variety of bad actors: foreign governments, criminals, and teenagers on a lark (not necessarily in descending order of malevolence). This plague is being spread over the Internet by a veritable army of CIA hackers: “By the end of 2016,” WikiLeaks tells us, “the CIA’s hacking division, which formally falls under the agency’s Center for Cyber Intelligence (CCI), had over 5000 registered users and had produced more than a thousand hacking systems, trojans, viruses, and other ‘weaponized’ malware.” The inevitable end result: a world infected with so much malware that computers become almost useless – and this parlous condition is paid for by you, the American taxpayer.
This is, in effect, the cybernetic equivalent of the Iraq war – an invasion that led to such unintended consequences as the rise of ISIS, the devastation of Syria, and the empowerment of Iran. In short, a war that made us less safe.
One aspect of the Vault 7 data dump that’s drawing particular attention is the CIA’s Remote Devices Branch’s “Umbrage group,” which, we are told, “collects and maintains a substantial library of attack techniques ‘stolen’ from malware produced in other states including the Russian Federation.” The idea is to mask the Agency’s . . . READ MORE at ZeroHedge>> [VIDEO available at source.]
It’s Happening: France’s Le Pen Declares War on Germany’s Merkel,
To Her Face, At EU Assembly
March 1, 2017
Posted Quemado Institute
March 3, 2017
This is a savage assault upon Merkel, delivered with fierce Marine Le Pen — who called Germany a ‘servant to America.’ I’ve never seen anything quite like it, frankly. It bordered on sabre rattling before a declaration of war.
Le Pen emphatically rejected the subjugation and ‘vassilisation’ of Europe by Germany — declaring her intentions to break off from it — representative of an ‘intelligent protectionism’, individual liberties and defense of safety and identity.
By Jessica Vaughan
Center for Immigration Studies
February 11, 2017
A review of information compiled by a Senate committee in 2016 reveals that 72 individuals from the seven countries covered in President Trump’s vetting executive order have been convicted in terror cases since the 9/11 attacks. These facts stand in stark contrast to the assertions by the Ninth Circuit judges who have blocked the president’s order on the basis that there is no evidence showing a risk to the United States in allowing aliens from these seven terror-associated countries to come in.
In June 2016 the Senate Subcommittee on Immigration and the National Interest, then chaired by new Attorney General Jeff Sessions, released a report on individuals convicted in terror cases since 9/11. Using open sources (because the Obama administration refused to provide government records), the report found that 380 out of 580 people convicted in terror cases since 9/11 were foreign-born. The report is no longer available on the Senate website, but a summary published by Fox News is available here.
The Center has obtained a copy of the information compiled by the subcommittee. The information compiled includes names of offenders, dates of conviction, terror group affiliation, federal criminal charges, sentence imposed, state of residence, and immigration history.
The Center has extracted information on 72 individuals named in the Senate report whose country of origin is one of the seven terror-associated countries included in the vetting executive order: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen. The Senate researchers were not able to obtain complete information on each convicted terrorist, so it is possible that more of the convicted terrorists are from these countries.
The United States has admitted terrorists from all of the seven dangerous countries:
According to the report, at least 17 individuals entered as refugees from these terror-prone countries. Three came in on student visas and one arrived on a diplomatic visa. At least 25 of these immigrants eventually became citizens. Ten were lawful permanent residents, and four were illegal aliens.
These immigrant terrorists lived in at least 16 different states, with the largest number from the terror-associated countries living in New York (10), Minnesota (8), California (8), and Michigan (6). Ironically, Minnesota was one of the states suing to block Trump’s order to pause entries from the terror-associated countries, claiming it harmed the state. At least two of the terrorists were living in Washington, which joined with Minnesota in the lawsuit to block the order.
Thirty-three of the 72 individuals from the seven terror-associated countries were convicted of very serious terror-related crimes, and were sentenced to at least three years imprisonment. The crimes included use of a weapon of mass destruction, conspiracy to commit a terror act, material support of a terrorist or terror group, international money laundering conspiracy, possession of explosives or missiles, and unlawful possession of a machine gun.
Some opponents of the travel suspension have tried to claim that the Senate report was flawed because it included individuals who were not necessarily terrorists because they were convicted of crimes such as identity fraud and false statements. About a dozen individuals in the group from the seven terror-associated countries are in this category. Some are individuals who were arrested and convicted in the months following 9/11 for involvement in a fraudulent hazardous materials and commercial driver’s license scheme that was extremely worrisome to law enforcement and counter-terrorism agencies, although a direct link to the 9/11 plot was never claimed.
The information in this report was compiled by Senate staff from open sources, and certainly could have been found by the judges if they or their clerks had looked for it. Another example that should have come to mind is that of Abdul Razak Ali Artan, who attacked and wounded 11 people on the campus of Ohio State University in November 2016. Artan was a Somalian who arrived in 2007 as a refugee.
President Trump’s vetting order is clearly legal under the provisions of section 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, which says that the president can suspend the entry of any alien or group of aliens if he finds it to be detrimental to the national interest. He should not have to provide any more justification than was already presented in the order, but if judges demand more reasons, here are 72.
Quemado Institute comments: Opponents of the travel ban claim no Americans have been killed by immigrants from the above countries, and that the largest number have been killed by citizens of Saudi Arabia, conspicuously not on the list. We’re looking for further confirmation either way.
By Andre Vajra (Alternatia.org)
Translated by Kristina Kharlova
January 4, 2017
The Last Days Of Global Order?
At the moment such concepts as ‘national interests of the United States’ or ‘U.S. foreign policy’ are meaningless, as indeed there are only ‘interests’ and ‘policies’ of transnational oligarchy using the muscle of the United States for its narrow corporate goals…. Figuratively speaking, at this point, the United States is a kind of icebreaker without breaks, speeding at maximum speed, aimed at breaking the existing world order. And then it will be sunk, as the only way to stop the US. This is why the brunt of the war against the non-Western world lies on the United States.
I wrote this in the late 90’s of the last century. If we proceed from what is happening with the United States today, the process of sinking this country has already begun. Look at the disastrous condition of the economy and finances of America.
The real production of the country has been shipped out, and the financial system is a giant bubble of loans, securities, and unsecured dollars, ready to burst at any moment. The material and social situation of the masses of this country is getting worse with each new president.
Authority turned into a corrupt monolith, which lies at the basis of global domination by transnational oligarchy. Infrastructure is rotting. The armed forces are regressing. Crime is off the charts. And most importantly, over the last ten years, the split in the American ruling elite is growing.
Today in the United States several powerful oligarchic clans clashed in a fierce battle for control of Washington for the future of the country and the world. Trump and Clinton are just visible vertices of the clashing icebergs. They publicly personify the opposing forces, remaining in the shadows behind media images, news releases and political battles.
In fact, at this point Trump is trying to hijack control of the US from transnational oligarchic clans, whose interests are represented by Clinton. Trump is a tank, ramming ahead through the dense ranks of the American ruling elite regardless of party affiliation. That’s why Trump first broke the defense of the Republicans, becoming the presidential candidate of the Republican party, and then in the elections broke the defense of the Democrats, becoming President.
His goal is to save the United States, expanded in the interests of transnational oligarchy. Trump wants to stop the sinking of his country.
Trump is not alone. He has a company of very influential people within America and abroad. Additionally, he enjoys full support of the part of American patriotic establishment (officials, the military, agents of security services), who dream of rescuing America from the control of transnational oligarchy.
So, in fact, what is happening now in America, is a revolution. Not just American, but global. If Trump will be able to take control of the United States, transnational oligarchy will lose the most important tool of its power and influence in the world.
If this happens, the current global order will collapse.
The official death of establishment media control
By Kit Daniels
January 2, 2017
Incoming President Donald Trump will go around the mainstream media by making public policy announcements directly on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. The move, which is unprecedented for a president, is designed to limit the mainstream media’s role as an information filter by reaching the American people directly through social media.
“The fact of the matter is that when he tweets, he gets results,” incoming Press Secretary Sean Spicer said Sunday. “You know, with all due respect, I think it freaks the mainstream media out that he has this following of over 45 plus million people that follow him on social media, that he can have a direct conversation.” “He doesn’t have to have it funneled through the media.”
The president’s use of Twitter will curtail the media’s ability to spin his message because mainstream reporters will no longer have insider privilege at the White House, which they did under past administration thanks to press events closed to the public. And Trump’s move will likely spark a new era of citizen-journalism similar to colonial America in which independent newspapers thrived because, at the time, there wasn’t an establishment media controlling the flow of information. The public will now have the same sources of information as mainstream reporters, which means the public will be able to draw their own conclusions about the Trump administration without being led like cattle to a predetermined “opinion” pushed by the establishment media. Without public ignorance to the truth, the media will fail to advance the globalist agenda which accelerated after the technocratic takeover of the Carter administration.
It’s a new era of independent thought, so it’s not surprising why the mainstream media is having a panic attack.
“…The fact that the media suddenly finds itself locked out in this most important of information dissemination and filtration pathways, has unleashed the biggest period of soul-searching for the conventional press in decades,” Zero Hedge pointed out.
The new era of adjustment has only just begun.
By Chris Martenson
PeakProsperity – December 31, 2016
Watch human population grow exponentially in shock-provoking animation.
Click for Video.
For full article click here.
By Kennedy Applebaum
December 30, 2016
In The Duran article, FBI-Homeland Security report fails to prove Russians behind Clinton leaks, author Alexander Mercouris informs us today that the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security have published a 13-page report on their “investigation” into the now infamous Russian hacking allegations. This comes on the heels of the current acting U.S. President’s announcement of new sanctions against Russia and the expelling of 35 Russian diplomats on 72-hour notice.
A perusal of the Homeland Security-FBI investigation report reveals a compilation of dense computer buzz words, apparently meant to conceal the fact that not a single item of evidence has been given to support the veracity of the Russian hacking allegations. See for yourself:
US Department of Homeland Security and Federal Bureau of Investigation Joint Analysis Report. To view 13-page pdf file, click here: GRIZZLY STEPPE – Russian Malicious Cyber Activity.
For an idea of the intent of the document, the USDHS-FBI Report begins:
“This Joint Analysis Report (JAR) is the result of analytic efforts between the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). This document provides technical details regarding the tools and infrastructure used by the Russian civilian and military intelligence Services (RIS) to compromise and exploit networks and endpoints associated with the U.S. election, as well as a range of U.S. Government, political, and private sector entities. The U.S. Government is referring to this malicious cyber activity by RIS as GRIZZLY STEPPE.”
The good news is, Vladimir Putin played a master chess move today against his soon-to-be stalemated US Presidential antagonist in the form of a deadly knight fork. Adam Garrie, also of The Duran, tells us the Russian President “will not retaliate against US sanctions.”
Vladimir Putin says:
“We reserve the right to retaliate, but we will not sink to the level of this irresponsible ‘kitchen’ diplomacy. We will take further moves on restoring Russian-American relations based on the policies that the administration of President-elect Donald Trump adopts”.
Update – Obambino tantrum irrelevant:
Rumors that Russia is expelling 35 diplomats in retaliation for US President’s latest tantrum have been dispelled. In the Zero Hedge article Putin Stunner: “We Will Not Expel Anyone; We Refuse To Sink To ‘Kitchen’ Diplomacy”, Tyler Durden further elaborates:
Following this morning’s reports that Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov would recommend to Russian President Vladimir Putin a retaliation in kind, and expel 35 American diplomats, saying that “we cannot leave such acts unanswered. Reciprocity is part of diplomatic law” with Putin spokesman Peskov adding that “there is no doubt that Russia’s adequate and mirror response will make Washington officials feel very uncomfortable as well”, it was ultimately up to Putin to decide how to respond to the US.
Which he did on Friday morning, when in a stunning reversal, the Russian leader took the high road, rejected the Lavrov proposal, and in a statement posted by the Kremlin said that Russia won’t expel any Americans in retaliation to US moves, in a brutal demonstration of just how irrelevant Obama’s 11th hour decision is for US-Russian relations.
By Tyler Durden
December 25, 2016
OK, this is actually pretty obvious – but it is worth pointing out that the “archipelago” of islands across the vast expanse of the United States that carried the vote for Hillary Clinton during the election – also happens to be a ring of the liberal cities that:
a) have exploded with crime, riots and unrest
b) have provided sanctuary for millions of illegal immigrants that have destabilized the country
c) are going bankrupt and will be unable to fulfill pension obligations, or pay their share of social security, welfare, etc.
d) have been foremost in advocating gun control, and ensuring that only criminals and police have guns, while 2nd Amendment arm-bearing citizen have flocked to the rural areas where their rights are not generally restricted
e) will be the first places to be become unstable during any major crisis – as soon as grocery store shelves go empty. Martial law will be the only way to maintain stability, and that will come at a further price to liberty.
f) will be the first place to line up for FEMA camps and beg for food, shelter and rations, again, at a further price to liberty
Of course, there are many more items that could be added to the list, but it gets tedious, and I think everyone gets the point.
Liberal havens have become largely clueless about the real world about them, and have turned a blind eye to the destabilizing forces that are compounding upon them.
IF/WHEN the SHTF, these will be the absolute last places you’d want to be caught dead.
December 2, 2016
I know these stats/quotes have been making the rounds for the past day or two, but I wanted to post them up here:
There are 3,141 counties in the United States. Trump won 3,084 of them. Clinton won 57. There are 62 counties in New York State. Trump won 46 of them. Clinton won 16.
Clinton won the popular vote by approx. 1.5 million votes. In the 5 counties that encompass NYC, (Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Richmond & Queens) Clinton received well over 2 million more votes than Trump. (Clinton only won 4 of these counties; Trump won Richmond) Therefore these 5 counties alone, more than accounted for Clinton winning the popular vote of the entire country.
These 5 counties comprise 319 square miles. The United States is comprised of 3, 797,000 square miles. When you have a country that encompasses almost 4 million square miles of territory, it would be ludicrous to even suggest that the vote of those who inhabit a mere 319 square miles should dictate the outcome of a national election.
Large, densely populated Democrat cities (NYC, Chicago, LA, etc) don’t and shouldn’t speak for the rest of our country. This is just a reminder why the Founding Father’s created the Electoral College. It was to prevent the population centers deciding Presidential elections. Pure genius.
Trump the Strong Victor
By Kennedy Applebaum
October 10, 2016
U.S. Republican Presidential nominee Donald Trump put on a powerful performance in the second U.S. Presidential debate of October 9, 2016, stressing the issues while managing to keep Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton on the defensive. The billionaire executive again came out strongly for getting along with Russia, repealing Obamacare, and halting immigration from countries harboring radical Islamic terrorist until proper vetting procedures are in place.
Trump displayed shrewd presence of mind in the face of inevitably rigged questions. When the moderator predictably harped on the petty (petty, that is, compared to the chaos in Syria and threats of World War III associated with Hillary Clinton) issue of Trump’s “lewd” tape release, he successfully parried with attacks on Bill Clinton for raping four women—women who happened to be sitting in the audience at Trump’s request. Trump was impressively candid, not wavering about his vetting policy when asked by a Muslim about the proposed temporary ban on Islamics entering the U.S.
According to a sampling from the 23 nationwide polls posted at theconservativetreehouse.com, Trump was chosen the victor by about 80% of voters out of some 3.5 million online poll participants.
Sample poll results:
Drudge Report: Trump 71.88% — 782,556 votes / Clinton 28.12% — 306,208 votes
Buzzfeed.com: Trump 92% — 3.2 million votes / Clinton 2% — 55,000 votes
Fox5 San Diego: Trump 85.27% — 54,342 votes / Clinton 12.79% — 8,149 votes
Breitbart News: Trump 92.64% — 171,381 votes / Clinton 7.36% — 13,612 votes
Politopinion.com: Trump 92.48% — 31,834 votes / Clinton 7.52% — 2590 votes
5NewsOnline.com: Trump 78.61% / Clinton 21.39%
Other recent QI editorials:
American Bombing No Mistake
By Karl Pomeroy
Original Post: Quemado Institute
September 19, 2016
Evidence continues to accumulate that the United States is supporting terrorism overseas. The American air strikes in Syria’s eastern province of Deir el-Zour on Saturday, September 17, 2016, which killed some 80 Syrian troops and allowed ISIS to expand in the area, constitute de facto proof of deliberate Pentagon military aid to terrorists and in particular ISIS.
The US government claims the bombing was a mistake. This is impossible to believe. The air strikes violated the new US-Russian ceasefire, constituting a crime on that basis alone. But that’s not the most important clue. No sane person could conceivably accept the claim that the Pentagon is so ignorant it did not know what it was doing.
Place the Criminals in Isolation
It is time Obama be impeached, and his terrorist cohorts infiltrating the American government be put on public trial. The people of this country, along with officials and observers all over the world, must demand action to end US war-mongering.
All foreign nations should boycott every event attended by US officials who back regime change or ISIS, and should conduct summits in the absence of complicit US “diplomats”. Cuba and China have tiptoed down this rocky path, cheekily snubbing Obama’s grand entrance to their airports.
Sanctions against the United States might also be in order. Samantha Power should be roundly condemned at the UN by every member present. She should not be allowed to finish a sentence, much less give a speech, and should be treated firmly and rudely. Her lies are a disgrace to the ears of intelligent people.
Enforced isolation imposed on the US would not start World War III. It would simply send a message so strong, American policy would have to change. Obama seems intent to do as much damage as possible in the last 100 deadly days of his term. He must be stopped by any legal nonviolent means at the world’s disposal.
What Has Happened to Vladimir Putin?
Moscow claims to have finally reached the obvious conclusion that the US supports ISIS. They’re lying. The Kremlin has known for several years that the US is aiding terrorists. Why has Putin been too timid to simply come out and say so? Why wait until now? The Russian President’s defeatist behavior is perplexing.
Or is it?
Something happened to Putin after he adopted the Crimean peninsula. Something changed him radically at the time of the Sochi Olympics, where pride flamed from his blazing face over the achievements of his great nation, a pride prescient of his ultimate humiliation and retreat into slimebag diplomacy. Never again has he made a great move.
Something happened to the Russian President when he found new romance at the Sochi Olympics and betrayed, then eventually divorced, his long-devoted wife Lyudmila. The global superhero wilted psychologically—went from firebrand to basket case in the space of a few weeks.
Putin then betrayed Donbass, first by discouraging the May 11, 2014 referendum; second by non-recognition of the newly formed Republics; third by failure to defend Donbass militarily; fourth by overturning the Duma’s decision allowing armed intervention; fifth by failing to defend Donetsk and Lugansk diplomatically; and sixth by embracing the illegal Ukraine government—even calling the Kiev war criminals “partners”. He pansy-assed to the West, and never regained his global leadership. It was the fall of a great man—one of the most admirable leaders in history.
The following four articles support many, though not all, of my contentions.
In the first, Daniel McAdams elucidates supsicious facts on the ground in Deir el-Zour. Following that, Paul Craig Roberts exposes Moscow’s vacillating weakness in a biting analysis of Russia’s failure to confront Washington over Syria. In the next, antiwar.com’s Jason Ditz illustrates the curious benefits of the bombings to the American neconservative contingent.
Finally, Russia’s UN envoy Vitaly Churkin, in a report from rt.com, gives further damning evidence against US government motives, a stance that highlights the recent turnabout in Russia’s diplomatic posture.
US Bombs Assads Troops, Kills 62, Enables Big ISIS Advance,
Infuriates New Russian Allies
By Danial McAdams
The US military has bombed Syrian government positions in the eastern province of Deir el-Zour today, where the Syrian military had been battling ISIS. According to the report, the US attack on Syrian troops “enabled an [ISIS] advance on the hill overlooking the air base.” This is the second time US forces have directly targeted Syrian government troops inside Syria. It would be the first time such an attack produced a battlefield advantage to ISIS.
The US attack has killed at least 62 and perhaps as many as 100 Syrian government troops.
Earlier today it was reported that the Syrian government had sent some 1,000 members of the elite Republican Guard into the Deir el-Zour province, as battles with ISIS in the area increase. This US attack has wiped out perhaps ten percent of this force and has obliterated Syrian army weapons and other materiel.
The US government has admitted to the attack, but claims it was all a mistake. As some observers have pointed out, however, ISIS does not behave as traditional military units. They do not generally gather in large numbers like this or establish “bases.” The US Central Command released a statement earlier today claiming that the US coordinated the strike with the Russians, but Moscow has vehemently denied the claim. In fact, spokesman for the Russian Foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova was quoted by the state news agency Tass as saying that “after today’s attack on the Syrian army, we come to the terrible conclusion that the White House is defending the Islamic State.”
This dramatic development comes as the latest ceasefire begins to crumble. Russia has condemned Washington’s refusal to implement a key component of the agreement, to press US-backed rebels to cease fighting alongside al-Qaeda; and the main US-backed “moderate” Islamist group, Ahrar al-Sham, has refused to take part in the ceasefire at all. Yesterday, US-backed FSA “moderate” opposition troops chased US Special Forces out of one town in Syria.
Is today’s attack a turning point in the war, where the US will begin to strike Syrian government forces more frequently? If so, how will Russia and Iran react to this overt shift in US strategy? Is this the flashpoint?
Russia Has No Partners In The West
By Paul Craig Roberts
Paul Craig Roberts
September 19, 2016
The Russian government is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. The Russian government keeps making agreements with Washington, and Washington keeps breaking them.
This latest exercise in what Einstein defined as insanity is the latest Syrian cease fire agreement. Washington broke the agreement by sending the US Air Force to bomb Syrian troop positions, killing 62 Syrian soldiers and wounding 100, thus clearing the way for ISIS to renew the attack.
Russia caught Washington off guard in September 2015 when the Russian Air Force was sent to bomb ISIS positions in Syria, thus enabling the Syrian Army to regain the initiative. Russia had the war against ISIS won, but pulled out unexpectedly before the job was done. This allowed the US or its agents to resupply ISIS, which renewed the attack.
So Russia had to return to Syria. In the interval Washington had inserted itself. Now the Russian air attacks on ISIS are more complicated, as is the sky over Syria. Russia notifies Washington of its planned attacks on ISIS, and Washington warns ISIS and perhaps Turkey which shot down a Russian plane. Nevertheless, the Syrian Army gained ground.
But each time victory was stymied by “peace talks” or a “cease fire,” during which the US supported forces would regroup. Consequently, a war that Russia and Syria could have already won continues, and with a new element. Now Washington has directly attacked the Syrian army.
The US military claims it thought it was striking ISIS. Think about that a minute. The US claims to be a military superpower. It spies on the entire world, even on the personal emails and cell phone calls of its European vassals. Yet, somehow all this spy power failed to differentiate a known Syrian Army position from ISIS. If we believe that, we must conclude that the US is militarily incompetent.
This is what has happened: Prior to the current “cease fire,” the Russians could attack the US-supported jihadists, but the US could not attack Syrian forces directly, only through its jihadist proxies. The US has used the “cease fire” to create a precedent for US direct attacks on the Syrian Army.
The Russians, who almost had the war won, have shifted their focus to “peace talks” and “cease fires” that the US has used to introduce Washington’s direct participation into the conflict.
It is a mystery that the Russian government believes Washington and Moscow have any common interest in the outcome in Syria. Washington’s interest is to remove Assad and put Syria into the chaos that rules in Libya and Iraq. Russia’s interest is to stabalize Syria as a bulwark against the spread of jihadism. It is extraordinary that the Russian government is so misinformed that it thinks Moscow and Washington have a common interest in fighting terrorism, when terrorism is Washington’s weapon for destabilizing the Middle East.
How can the Russian memory be so short? Washington promised Gorbachev that if he permitted the reunification of Germany, NATO would not move one inch to the East. But the Clinton regime placed NATO on Russia’s border.
The George W. Bush regime violated the ABM Treaty by pulling out of it, and the Obama regime is putting missile bases on Russia’s border.
The neoconservatives deep-sixed no first use of nuclear weapons and elevated them to pre-emptive first strike in US war doctrine.
The Obama regime overthrew the Ukrainian government and installed a US puppet government in a former constituent part of Russia. The puppet government launched a war against the Russian populations in Ukraine, causing secession movements that Washington has mischaracterized as “Russian invasion and annexation.”
Yet, the Russian government thinks Washington is a “partner” with whom it has common interests.
ISIS Overruns Syrian Army Base After US Bombings
US warplanes Killed 83 Syrian Troops Ahead of ISIS Incursion
By Jason Ditz
September 18, 2016
In the defense of the Deir Ezzor Airport, the Syrian military has long depended on an army base in Jebel Tharda to repel ISIS advances. That base has been lost this weekend, after a disastrous series of US-led airstrikes killed a large number of Syrian troops defending the base, and ISIS quickly overran what was left.
For over 20 minutes, the coalition warplanes attacked the base. According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the attack killed at least 83 Syrian troops and wounded 120 others. The US Central Command claimed they thought the base belonged to ISIS.
It does now. With the forces decimated by the US attack, ISIS quickly overran the base. Syrian state media claimed an ongoing effort to recover the site, but it does not appear to have been successful yet, as ISIS managed to shoot down a Syrian warplane, flying out of Deir Ezzor Airport, over Jebel Tharda.
The US continued attacking the Syrian troops until they were warned by Russia that they were attacking the wrong site. The US has since expressed “regret” but also condemned Russia for calling an emergency UN Security Council meeting over the matter, insisting everyone knows the US “would not intentionally strike a known Syrian military unit.”
Protracted anti-Russia speeches by the US Ambassador ended the emergency meeting prematurely, and has led Russian officials to remark that the incident is “suspicious” and reflective of the US refusal to coordinate in the air war against ISIS.
The US and Russia had brokered a ceasefire which went into effect last week, and included the Syrian government, meaning the airstrikes were a major violation of that ceasefire. Though the ceasefire was supposed to, after seven days, give way to a new coordinated US-Russia bombing campaign, it is unclear at this point if Russia has any appetite to attempt this anymore, as US officials continue to complain that they don’t trust Russia to keep up their end of the bargain.
Timing and Other Aspects of US Strike on Syrian Army
Suggest Intentional Provocation – Churkin
September 18, 2016
The US’ sudden attempt to “help” the Syrian army fighting ISIS in the eastern city of Deir ez-Zor, which resulted in a strike that killed and injured dozens of soldiers, does not look like an honest mistake, Russia’s UN envoy told journalists at the UNSC meeting.
“It is highly suspicious that the United States chose to conduct this particular air strike at this time,” Russia’s ambassador Vitaly Churkin said.
Churkin questioned why the US suddenly chose to “help” the Syrian army defend Deir ez-Zor after all these years, recalling how American forces just observed terrorists’ movements and did “nothing when ISIS advanced on Palmyra.”
“It was quite significant and not accidental that it happened just two days before the Russian-American arrangements were supposed to come into full force,” Churkin added.
Churkin also questioned why the US decided to classify and not share with the public or even members of the Security Council the text of the US-Russia deal reached in Geneva, before reading out two passages from the document.
The preamble of the document signed by both nations on September 9 read that the US and Russia are prepared to undertake “joint efforts” to stabilize the situation in Syria with special emphasis on the Aleppo region,and would separate moderate opposition forces from those of Al-Nusra. The second passage, presented by Churkin, read that the purpose of the Joint Implementation Group (JIG) is to “enable expanded coordination” between the US and Russia to work together to defeat Jabhat Al-Nusra and Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) and support the political transition process.
“The beginning of work of the Joint Implementation Group was supposed to be September 19. So if the US wanted to conduct an effective strike on Al-Nusra or ISIS, in Deir ez-Zor or anywhere else, they could wait two more days and coordinate with our military and be sure that they are striking the right people.”
“Instead they chose to conduct this reckless operation,” Churkin said.
He also noted that the US has been voicing its concern over the humanitarian situation in Syria, claiming that because of it, “there are no conditions to start implementing the arrangements of the Joint Implementation Group.” But the Syrian government cleared all obstacles for the humanitarian aid it be delivered, leaving the US with “no serious ground” to halt or postpone the start date of the JIG’s work.
“So it may well be, one has to conclude, that the airstrike has been conducted in order to derail the operation of the Joint Implementation Group and actually prevent it from being set in motion,” Churkin said. “It may well be that the United States is trying to hide the fact that they are actually not in control of the situation, that they allowed the situation to get out of control.”
Vitaly Churkin spoke to journalists after briefly leaving the closed-door UN Security Council meeting, which was convened by Moscow to give Washington a chance to offer an explanation for the actions of its military.
However, instead of discussing the issue, US ambassador Samantha Power immediately left the room to address the press and accuse Russia of hypocrisy.
The US envoy to the UN spent some 30 seconds expressing “regret” over the unfortunate coalition airstrike that resulted in the loss of the lives of Syrian soldiers, and insisting that even if the ongoing investigation proves the US military is indeed to blame, it had never been their “intention” to strike Syrian military.
After that, Power spent the next 15 minutes slamming Moscow’s “uniquely hypocritical and cynical” attempt to make Washington explain itself at an urgent UNSC meeting.
“Why are we having this meeting tonight? It is a diversion from what is happening on the ground. If you don’t like what is happening on the ground then you distract. It is a magician’s trick… we encourage the Russian Federation to have emergency meetings with the Assad regime and deliver them to this deal,” said Samantha Power.
“What Russia is alleging tonight is that somehow the United States is undermining the fighting against ISIL. The Russian spokesperson even said that the United States might be complicit in this attack … this is not a game,” she added, before going into details of how Assad government is to blame for the dire situation in Syria.
Original post: Quemado Institute
Copyright (Introduction) Karl Pomeroy, September 19, 2016
Americans Have the Power to Vote for Peace
By Karl Pomeroy
September 13, 2016
There should be no confusion about who to vote for in the 2016 US elections. Donald Trump is the peace candidate, Hillary Clinton the war candidate. This is the logical conclusion.
On US Foreign Aggression
First of all, Trump has never deviated from his noninterventionist stance. Whether or not he can fully overcome status quo opposition to his foreign policy, his America First principle has been unwavering. Martin Sieff describes it this way (War or Peace: For Whom Do We Vote on November 8th?):
“There can be no guarantee that Trump will succeed in achieving his expressed goals in foreign policy. He will certainly not be a dovish or disarming president. But he has been totally consistent in his expressed determination to be a more cautious and responsible one. By contrast, a vote for Hillary Clinton will ensure, at the very best, more of the existing collection of aggressive and dangerous US global security policies posing, to the apparent contentment of the American public as ‘responsible’ ones of ‘containment’ and ‘stabilization.'”
The Republican candidate’s only exception to a cautious noninterventionist policy is his determination to destroy ISIS (Daesh), whose rise was an unintended—or possibly an intended—consequence of US aggression promulgated by G.W. Bush, Obama and H.R. Clinton, as well as presidents before them.
Kenneth R. Timmerman describes Clinton’s active role in the creation of ISIS (The Media Elites Feel That Shiver Up the Spine—And It’s Not Victory, September 11, 2016):
“I have already ‘fact-checked’ Trump’s claim that Clinton and Obama were ‘founders of ISIS’ and found it to be true not just because the precipitous U.S. withdrawal created a security vacuum for ISIS to exploit, but because it was the policy of the U.S. government at the time to reinforce and arm the groups that morphed into ISIS, as a now-declassified Defense Intelligence Agency report from August 2012 shows.”
The fact that hypocritical US military policy is responsible for the rise to ISIS does not mean we’ve lost the moral right to fight jihadists today. Stopping the spread of ISIS is arguably a matter of self-defence for Christians and the whole secular world. ISIS, not Russia, will be the military target of Donald Trump as Commander-in-Chief.
American political historian Eric Zuesse emphasizes this distinction between the policies of the two nominees (Clinton vs Trump on War with Russia, September 6, 2016) :
“The biggest difference between the two major-Party U.S. Presidential candidates is that Hillary Clinton wants to continue the Obama-Administration’s policy of regime-change in nations that aren’t hostile towards Russia (such as Iraq, Libya, Ukraine and now Syria), and that Donald Trump doesn’t. Trump wants to focus U.S. national-security policies instead upon eliminating jihadists (a problem that the U.S. and Saudi governments actually gave birth to in Pakistan and Afghanistan starting in 1979, in order to cripple the Soviet Union—which ended in 1991). Trump says that the Cold War is over, but Hillary says ‘Russia must pay a price’.
“However, neither candidate has provided any fleshed-out position on the matter. Hillary Clinton doesn’t need to do so, because she has already shown by her actions in public office, that she has consistently favored overthrowing heads-of-state who were either neutral or else downright friendly toward Russia, of which there have been four cases that are especially prominent: Saddam Hussein, Muammar Gaddafi, Viktor Yanukovych, and Bashar al-Assad. Clearly, fighting Russia is Hillary Clinton’s top foreign-policy priority. However, Donald Trump can be evaluated only by what he has said, and by the consistency of his statements on the matter. He has consistently said: America must, for the first time since the end of the Cold War, concentrate its national-security focus upon only one enemy: jihadism—no longer international communism (which ended anyway)….
“The issue between Trump and Clinton, regarding the military, is that Trump wants to focus against jihadists, whereas Hillary wants to focus against Russia. Not only does the focus determine the target, but it determines what the alliances can be. It affects everything in international affairs. It profoundly affected Hillary Clinton’s actions while she was the U.S. Secretary of State, and it will profoundly affect the type of person who will be occupying the Oval Office starting in 2017; so, it will affect not only the future and character of our nation, it will affect whether or not there will be a nuclear war.”
Self-defence, in this case against ISIS, is of course consistent with a platform of peace. Foreign invasion and regime change are not. Hillary Clinton has pushed repeatedly for US military intervention and foreign regime change—in Iraq, Libya, Syria, Ukraine, and now even possibly Iran.
Patrick Armstrong analyses Clinton’s exceptionalist psychopathology (Trump is a Deal Maker, Which Means Less Risk of War If He Wins, September 10, 2016):
“To me, the choice in the US election is utterly simple: the most important thing is stopping the perpetual wars of the New American Century. President Clinton means more wars. Deeply implicated in the wars in Yugoslavia, Libya and Syria, she is contaminated by the noxious gospel of American Exceptionalism; the arrogant (and profoundly ignorant) assumption that the US is morally justified in doing anything anywhere to anyone at any time because its intentions are pure.
“‘American Exceptionalism’ is manifested today chiefly by armed force: military bases around the world, US special forces active in half the countries and war after war since the close of the Cold War a quarter of a century ago. It should be clear—even if it isn’t to the Exceptionalists—that the US is losing these wars, that each sets up the conditions for the next and that their consequences, far from the ‘stability’ fantasised by the Exceptionalists, are uniformly disastrous. Clinton will end none of them and will start new ones.”
Bruce Fein of The Huffington Post slams Clinton’s policies as first-degree murder, a category of crime neconservative hypocrites rarely apply to foreign victims (A Vote for Hillary is a Vote for War with Russia and China, September 9, 2016):
“We can deduce Ms. Clinton’s conception of peace, progress, and freedom by examining her actions and advocacy as a United States Senator, secretary of state, and presidential candidate. She supported and continues to support United States wars, i.e., the wholesale legalizations of first-degree murder, in Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen Somalia, Libya, and against ISIL and Al Qaeda everywhere on the planet. If she had her way, we would also be at war with Syria. In all of these conflicts, however, the promotion of freedom is a pretext for global dominance …”
The GOP candidate, in contrast, opposes foreign military aggression, thereby defying the neoconservative concensus. Michael Tracey of the New York Daily News, in his review of NBC’s September 7 “Commander-in-Chief Forum” says:
“By assessing the full body of Trump’s statements … it’s possible to glean a pattern of deviation from the U.S. foreign policy consensus. As far back as 1987, Trump publicly questioned the utility of maintaining vast U.S. military commitments abroad (an impulse which has manifested years later in his skepticism of orthodoxies around the proper role of NATO). He may not have full-throatedly denounced the Iraq War until 2004, but even doing so at that time separated him from most U.S. national politicians—especially Republicans, whose vociferous support for the war then was near-universal….
“At the Wednesday forum, Hillary alleged that there is ‘no difference’ between her position on the 2011 Libya intervention and Trump’s. This is on-its-face ludicrous. There’s simply no equivalence between her explicit role in the carrying out the military engagement—agitating within the Obama administration for it as secretary of state over the objections of wary colleagues—with Trump’s position … It’s also worth recalling that the Obama administration initially sold the intervention as a limited humanitarian effort to save civilians on the verge of being slain by Gadaffi. However, it later morphed into a full-fledged regime change boondoggle, at Hillary’s behest. Trump never voiced support for such an expanded mission.”
The Russian “Threat”
Secondly, Trump has consistently advocated friendship with Russia, while Clinton seeks to escalate tensions. Some analysts see Clinton’s hawkish stance as a flirtation with nuclear war. Paul Craig Roberts explains it as follows (Trump vs. Hillary: A Summation, August 25, 2016):
“We know that Hillary is a warmonger. We know that Hillary made the most irresponsible statement ever uttered by a presidential candidate when she declared the President of Russia to be the ‘new Hitler,’ thereby raising tensions between the nuclear powers to a higher level than existed during the Cold War. We know that Hillary is allied with the neoconservatives and that her belief in the neocons’ ideology of US world hegemony is likely to result in war with Russia and China….
“All we know about Trump is that the oligarchs, who sent America’s jobs overseas, who flooded the country with difficult-to-assimilate immigrants, who destroyed public education, who bailed out Wall Street and the ‘banks too big to fail,’ who sacrificed American homeowners and retirees living on a fixed income, who intend to privatize both Social Security and Medicare, who have given the public killer cops, relentless violations of privacy, the largest prison poplulation in the world, and destroyed the US Constitution in order to increase executive power over the American people, are violently opposed to Trump. This opposition should tell us that Trump is the person we want in the Oval Office. … If Hillary gets into the Oval Office, nuclear war is likely before her first term is over. A vote for Hillary is a vote for nuclear war.”
Geopolitical commentator Andre Akulov of Strategic Culture Foundation further substantiates Trump’s desire for friendly relations with Moscow and stresses the danger of increased provocation (US Military Vets Come Out in Support of Donald Trump, September 9):
“It should be mentioned that Donald Trump is also backed by Lieutenant General Michael Flynn, the former director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, who favors better relations with Russia. Visiting Moscow last year, Flynn told Russia Today in an interview that the United States and Russia should work together to resolve the Syrian civil war and defeat Islamic State. ‘Americans must understand that Russia also has a foreign policy and a national security strategy, and that Moscow launched the campaign against ISIS in Syria after its «unstated red lines were crossed,’ he said adding that ‘…the best way forward is for us to mutually agree that we have common interest and we’ve got to figure out how to work together, to achieve those common interests’ …
“On September 7, the rival presidential nominees appeared back-to-back at an NBC News town hall in New York—a forum highlighting their differences on matters of concern to the military audience. … The Republican candidate renewed his support for Russian President Vladimir Putin, noting among other things his ’82 percent approval rating’. And Trump accused Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton of having a ‘happy trigger’, a suggestion that she is too eager to insert the United States into international conflicts. Both candidates agreed the 2003 invasion of Iraq was a mistake. Clinton had to admit she was wrong voting for the war as a senator. Donald Trump sharply criticized the US intervention in Libya.The event shows the GOP candidate enjoys broad support among military for his stance on the foreign policy issues, including the relationship with Russia. … Many Americans with military experience know better than others how dangerous the current downturn could be. And they are trying to do what they can under the circumstances. One of the ways to address the issue is to support the GOP candidate who stands for better relations between Russia and the US.”
Ramping up tensions with foreign nuclear powers, an apparent Clinton obsession, brings the world closer to Armageddon. Gilbert Doctorow elucidates the hazards and explains why we should trust Trump’s promises (War or Peace: For Whom Do We Vote on November 8?):
“[The] issue is precisely America’s future foreign policy and whether we face 4 years of peace with Donald and his accommodative approach to world governance or a high probability of nuclear war with Hillary and her constellation of Neocon advisers egging us on to ever more provocative assertions of a global hegemony, and in particular, to brazen attempts to ‘contain’ both Russia and China. The question for our panel is whether and why we can trust Donald Trump to deliver a peaceagenda once he is in the Oval Office? Do we take on good faith or do we have demonstrable reasons to believe his promises to get along with Russia and China, to pull back from America’s over-exposed positions in NATO, especially in defense of the Baltic States against a fictive Russian aggressor? Should we be ready for yet another bait-and-switch election as we had with Obama eight years ago? My personal reassurance that I am backing the right man is to look at his enemies. The whole US foreign policy Establishment, led by its Neocon cheerleaders, is doing what it can to prevent his election. Is that enough of an insurance policy?”
Patrick Armstrong elucidates further, pointing out Trump’s talent as an experienced business negotiator (Trump Is A Deal-Maker, Which Means Less Risk of War If He Wins):
“Given [Hillary Clinton’s] extreme rhetoric, there is the non-zero possibility of bringing us to World War Last against Russia and China. Trump, on the other hand, boasts of his skills at negotiating The Deal. This deserves more attention than it has received. ‘American Exceptionalism’ never negotiates because there is nothing to negotiate about: there’s the Exceptionalist way, the correct way, and there are all the other ways and they’re all wrong; other countries’ national interests count for nothing against the Exceptional. For the Exceptionalists a ‘negotiation’ is a command to do it our way—the right way—or we bomb you. This is not what Trump is talking about: in a real deal both parties feel that they have achieved a good result; a real negotiator respects the other side’s interests and takes them into account; a real deal doesn’t need to be bombed into place.”
Provoking tension is especially disingenuous when the targeted nuclear power poses no threat to any nation. Those who contend that Russia invaded Ukraine and is therefore a threat to Europe are either ignorant, brainwashed, employed in the weapons business, or cozy with the Bilderberg New-World-Order clique. After all, it was the US, not Russia, that arranged the coup in Kiev.
Peace through Strength
Thirdly, the fact that Trump champions a strong military does not signal he plans for military aggression. Quite the reverse. Weakness invites attack, and attack necessitates war. There is no contradiction between peace and strength, an obvious truth missed by some observers.
Saddam Hussein is a case in point. As soon as he gave up his advanced weapons program, no amount of diplomacy could save Iraq from destruction. Vladimir Putin is another case in point. Moscow has no intention of attacking other nations, yet Russia has built up impressive military strength.
The Question of Looming Threats
If Trump is a peace candidate, why doesn’t he say so? A lot of people would vote for peace.
The subtle answer is, the billionaire businessman is too smart to give away his intentions. The world, after all, is not without threat. Treachery abounds, especially from China. Whether it’s politically correct to say so or not, China is a danger to the world at large. Moscow gave up all the foreign countries it governed in the twentieth century. Beijing did not. China still occupies Tibet and Xinjiang, an area larger than Argentina and almost the size of India. And the Beijing regime enacts hideous oppression of Tibetans and their ancient religious traditions.
China works on long time scales. But don’t be fooled by that. Chinese philosophers have claimed for centuries that the whole world belongs to China, that China is lending it to the rest of us as a temporary act of benevolence, and that someday they will take it all back. So when Beijing claims foreign lands are “ancient provinces of China”, they believe this applies to the whole world. China’s advance into the South China Sea is not a benign development. It’s an expansionist strategy spanning milennia.
Trump has not dwelled on the issue of Chinese military expansionism. I mention this to point out threats that might loom in the future, in order to emphasize the need for discretion in what candidates reveal today.
Trump’s stated policies and his eventual accomplishments as President may of course be two different things. Patrick Armstrong, however, gives plenty of reason for optimism:
“Can President Trump deliver on his promise to step away from confrontation and wars? There’s a very good reason to expect he can. The years of the so-called ‘imperial presidency’ have shown us that while American presidents have to struggle to achieve anything domestically they can start wars ad libitum—especially now that the secret of disguising neocon aims behind a froth of humanitarian rhetoric has been discovered. So all President Trump has to do is not start them. Therefore Trump is the obvious candidate to hope for and there are good reasons to think Trump can deliver: his starting approach is to negotiate and all he has to do to prevent a new war is to not start it. The other differences between the two candidates fade into froth and bubbles: no more Exceptionalist wars trumps—if my feeble pun may be accepted—everything else.”
Some media journalists, after viewing NBC’s Commander-in-Chief program, leaped to the conclusion—or so they claim—that Trump wants war as much as Hillary. Not so. The transcript of the event proves this is false. The GOP nominee only reiterated his desire to work with Russia:
“TRUMP: I think I would have a very, very good relationship with Putin. And I think I would have a very, very good relationship with Russia. As I said, take a look today. Take a look at what happened with their fighter jets circling one of our aircraft in a very dangerous manner. Somebody said less than 10 feet away. This is hostility. And I saw, just two or three days ago, they looked like they were not exactly getting along, but I looked at President Obama and Putin staring at each other. These were not two people that were getting along. And, you know, the beautiful part of getting along, Russia wants to defeat ISIS as badly as we do. If we had a relationship with Russia, wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could work on it together and knock the hell out of ISIS? Wouldn’t that be a wonderful thing?”
Trump also emphasizes his disagreement with the Libya invasion:
“LAUER: You said in the speech today, you said history shows that when America is not prepared is when the danger is the greatest.
“TRUMP: And we’re not prepared.
“LAUER: Will you be prepared on day one, if you’re elected president of the United States, to tackle these complex national security issues?
“TRUMP: One hundred percent. Hey, Matt, again, she made a mistake on Libya. She made a terrible mistake on Libya. And the next thing, I mean, not only did she make the mistake, but then they complicated the mistake by having no management once they bombed you know what out of Gadhafi. I mean, she made a terrible mistake on Libya. And part of it was the management aftereffect. I think that we have great management talents, great management skills.
“LAUER: But you are prepared?
“TRUMP: And I have to tell you—totally prepared. But remember this. I found this subject and these subjects of interest all of my life, Matt. This hasn’t been over the last 14 months. I’ve found these substantiates of tremendous interest. That’s why they were asking me about Iraq 14 years ago. They were asking me these questions. They don’t ask businesspeople those questions.”
A full inspection of the Commander-in-Chief Forum transcript shows no change in Trump’s views. The GOP candidate said in his Foreign Policy speech of April 27, 2016:
“Unfortunately, after the Cold War our foreign policy veered badly off course…. Logic was replaced with foolishness and arrogance, which led to one foreign policy disaster after another. We went from mistakes in Iraq to Egypt to Libya, to President Obama’s line in the sand in Syria. Each of these actions have helped to throw the region into chaos and gave ISIS the space it needs to grow and prosper…. It all began with a dangerous idea that we could make western democracies out of countries that had no experience or interests in becoming a western democracy. We tore up what institutions they had and then were surprised at what we unleashed. Civil war, religious fanaticism, thousands of Americans just killed [and] lives, lives, lives wasted…. The vacuum was created that ISIS would fill.
“[T]he legacy of the Obama-Clinton interventions will be weakness, confusion and disarray, a mess. We’ve made the Middle East more unstable and chaotic than ever before. We left Christians subject to intense persecution and even genocide…. Our actions in Iraq, Libya and Syria have helped unleash ISIS, and we’re in a war against radical Islam, but President Obama won’t even name the enemy, and unless you name the enemy, you will never ever solve the problem.
“After Secretary Clinton’s failed intervention in Libya, Islamic terrorists in Benghazi took down our consulate and killed our ambassador and three brave Americans. Then, instead of taking charge that night, Hillary Clinton decided to go home and sleep…. Clinton blames it all on a video, an excuse that was … proven to be absolutely a total lie. Our ambassador was murdered and our secretary of state misled the nation.
“We desire to live peacefully and in friendship with Russia and China.”
The issue couldn’t be any clearer.
A vote for Trump is a vote for peace.
Hillary’s Ill Health
The issue of Clinton’s failing health has become critical since her collapse on Sunday. Her doctor claims she has pneumonia, but some journalists report she has no more than 18 months to live. This raises questions about how the Democratic Party will handle the campaign. Will Hillary be well enough to conduct the debate on September 26, now less than two weeks away? If not, Trump will be cheated out a chance to compete against her.
Will the Democratic party select a new candidate? And if so, who would that be? Bernie Sanders is a likely pick, and in his case the foreign policy question becomes blurred. I was never sure Bernie is really willing to oppose the neocons; his statements on the subject are vague. A true politician, he seems ready to placate existing powers.
But that’s a topic for another day.