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Military Industrial Complex - The Hunger Games Economy

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The Hunger Games Economy
Jeff Faux: Dreams of Wall St. and Military Industrial Complex are not compatible with dreams of American middle class
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Jeff Faux is the Founder and now Distinguished Fellow of the Economic Policy Institute in Washington, DC. He is an activist, economist and writer, He has written extensively on issues from globalization to neighborhood development. His latest book is “The Servant Economy; Where America¹s Elite is Sending the Middle Class.”
Transcript
PAUL JAY, SENIOR EDITOR, TRNN: Welcome to The Real News Network. I'm Paul Jay in Baltimore.
There's been some debate amongst the American governing elite about America's place in the world and its declining power. Barack Obama went to Australia not long ago and declared that America will continue to be an Asia-Pacific power. And the issue of the Brzezinskian grand chessboard is still very much on their mind. But what does this maintaining America's position in the world mean for ordinary Americans? Who's going to pay for all this? When it comes to competitiveness, it really means wages, although that word doesn't get talked about very much, not in the mainstream press or in the halls of Congress.
Well, it does get talked about in a piece written by Jeff Faux, and he's now joining us. Jeff is a founder and distinguished fellow of the Economic Policy Institute in Washington, D.C. He's an activist, economist, and writer. He's written extensively on issues from globalization to neighborhood development, and his latest book is The Servant Economy: Where America's Elite is Sending the Middle Class. Thanks very much for joining us, Jeff.
JEFF FAUX, AUTHOR: Oh, it's great to be here, Paul. Thank you.
JAY: So, I mean, clearly we are dealing with a different world. And it's not just that it's militarily different, in the sense that China's now somewhat of a power, so is Russia and—back somewhat of a power—I mean, nothing on the scale of the United States, but the geopolitics and chessboard has changed somewhat. But where it's changed a lot more is with this massive industrial capacity in areas of the world where 20, 30 years ago there was nothing like it—advanced technology, high-quality production, very low wages. And America wants to maintain its competitiveness in all of this. So talk a bit about that and what that might mean for ordinary Americans, and maybe what the word competitiveness means.
FAUX: Well, I think—start from what I think is the basic assumption, and that is the United States can no longer satisfy the three great dreams that have driven American politics over the last decades. The first dream is the dream of Wall Street and business for unregulated access to speculative profits. The second dream is the dream of the military and foreign-policy elite and the military-industrial complex for global hegemony. The third dream is the dream of ordinary Americans for a rising living standard.
Now, we can have one out of three, certainly. Two out of three, maybe. Three out of three? No way. So in effect the decision is being made right now—or has been made—by this country's elite.
There's a lot of talk in Washington, as you know, about the grand bargain between Republicans and Democrats over budgets and taxes. But the real deal has already been cut. The average American income in real wages is going to decline over the next 10 years, 15 years, as far into the future as we can see. Now, this has been coming for a long time. It's not just about the recession and it's not temporary. As you probably know, for the last 30 years we've had stagnant wages in America. After wages rise steadily since World War II, they flattened out after 1979 and essentially have been flat.
So the question is: if wages were flat, how come everything looked so good? That is, people went to shopping centers and bought cars and houses during those 30 years that ended in 2008. And the reason is two. One, family incomes kept up because we sent more members of the family to work, usually the wife. Now there are more women than men in the labor force so that that strategy for most people is exhausted. The second is debt. People weren't getting raises, but they were getting access to cheaper and accessible credit. That has evaporated with the collapse of the financial sector.
JAY: Jeff, before you continue, let me ask: so if this process more or less began in the '70s, why? What happened? Why? If you could—you know, to some extent one could say that third dream of ordinary Americans, you know, to own a house, send the kids to college, not to be terrified of losing their job, to some extent that's—dream was still possible, at least in the early '60s.
FAUX: Oh, yeah. And the reason—.
JAY: So what happens?
FAUX: Yeah. There are three things that happened since the end of the '70s. The data starts from 1979; the kink in the curve starts from 1979. One was globalization, and by that I mean, essentially, exposing American workers to a very brutal and competitive global labor market before they were prepared.
Second, the weakening of the bargaining position of the average American worker. A lot of that had to do with the decline of unions. But it affected union members and nonunion members. The second thing that happened was the weakening of the bargaining position of the average American worker. This was not just about weaker unions, but weaker unions played a key role, not just for union members, but for people who aren't union members. Because unions were strong—or certainly stronger than they are now—the threat of unionization kept the bosses and kept the employers from cutting wages too much, cutting pensions too much, even though they would have liked to. So weaker unions, weaker bargaining positions [crosstalk]
JAY: And is weaker unions and bargaining positions linked to number one, which is globalization and the threat of moving offshore?
FAUX: That's right, certainly linked to number one. And number three, later, was the shredding of the safety net, the real value of the minimum wage, and the kinds of New Deal protections for labor that have been frayed away over the last 10 or 15 years.
But on the first, on globalization, there's something very important here to remember, and that is it not only affected working people, but it changed the culture of the American elite. You know, if you go back to the early part of the 20th century, labor and capital were in fierce struggles. But both labor and capital knew that they needed each other and were stuck in the same country. So, you know, when Henry Ford raised the wages of his Ford employees to $5 a day, the Wall Street guys said, Henry, what are you doing here? I mean, you can't pay—you're spoiling these people, you're paying them too much. And Henry Ford, who was a SOB union buster, said, look, I've got to pay them enough to come in to make the cars, but I also need to pay them enough to buy the cars. So it was an economy in which, while there were labor and capital disputes, we were all in it together.
What happened—what's happened since the 1980s is that globalization, the deregulation of trade and investment, has allowed the American commercial and economic elite to roam the world in search of lower wages, in search of government subsidies by Third World countries, etc.
JAY: Yeah, so you now have a situation where they saved GM and Chrysler, but workers'—starting worker wages go from, what, $26 to $14 an hour, and you probably couldn't buy a new car at $14 an hour.
FAUX: Exactly. And unlike Henry Ford, the people who run the Ford Motor Company today, you know, have other people they can use to sell their cars to. And so high wages, which we sort of learned after the 1930s were good for the economy because it created consumer demand and consumers bought the goods that were being produced, high wages in America are no longer what they were. They're now a threat to multinational corporations who still produce and sell things. And that's been a critical change.
JAY: They also seem to no longer think they need an educated workforce. I used to—in the '50s and '60s, all this talk about, you know, America will compete because it's going to be the most educated working class and this and that, they don't seem to care anymore. The public school system can go to hell and they don't seem to care.
FAUX: They don't care. But that's sort of the last excuse of the political governing class. I mean, whether it's, you know, Barack Obama, George Bush, Bill Clinton, they're all the so-called education presidents, and their answer to this decline in living standards and wages is not to worry, just go get an education. Barack Obama was in Florida about a year ago touring the country, saying the way we're going to compete in the world is to out-educate everyone.
Well, first what's obvious: that we're shrinking the schools, we're laying off teachers, kids can't go to college because it costs too much. But second, which is really important, we are not creating jobs for educated young people. You go into Apple, in the Apple Store, there is the future. And it's not the technology. It's in all those smart college-educated kids working as retail clerks for $10, $12 an hour. The Bureau of Labour Statistics—government agency—projects that between 2010-2020, the largest, fastest-growing occupations in this country, of the ten largest and fastest-growing, only one requires a college education.
JAY: Well, Jeff, we're going to pick this up in part two, and what I'll be asking in part two is it seems to me while this may make sense for Apple and it may make sense for a lot of individual companies to drive wages down and have more and more service jobs, as an economy somebody's got to be making money to buy all this stuff, and that seems to be where the rub is. So join us for part two of our series of interviews with Jeff Faux on The Real News Network.

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نیک پاکپور - تراژدی تاریخی 28 مرداد Image

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نیک پاکپور - تراژدی تاریخی 28 مرداد

تراژدی تاریخی 28 مرداد

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گوینده: نیک پاکپور

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"Negro Spring": Ferguson Residents, Friends of Michael Brown Speak Out for Human Rights
As peaceful protests continued Wednesday in Ferguson, Missouri, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder arrived in the city to meet with residents and FBI agents investigating the police shooting of Michael Brown. Democracy Now! traveled to Ferguson this week and visited the site where the 18-year-old Brown was killed. We spoke to young people who live nearby, including some who knew him personally. "He fell on his knees. Like, ’Don’t shoot.’ [The police officer] shot him anyway in the eye, the head, and four times down here," said one local resident Rico Like. "Hands up, don’t shoot is all I got to say. RIP Mike Brown."
Transcript
This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.
JUAN GONZÁLEZ: Peaceful protests continued last night in Ferguson, Missouri, over the fatal police shooting of unarmed African-American teenager Michael Brown. Police said six arrests were made last night. U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder traveled to Ferguson on Wednesday. He told residents "change is coming."
    ATTORNEY GENERAL ERIC HOLDER: Why would I be anyplace other than right here, right now, you know, to talk to—with the people in this area who are deserving of our attention? We want to help, as best we can. And we also want to listen. That’s the main part of this trip. We want to listen, to hear about the issues that you all are dealing with and seeing. Are there ways in which we can help?
JUAN GONZÁLEZ: Eric Holder met with high school students in Ferguson and recalled how he had repeatedly been targeted by police officers because of his race. The nation’s first African-American attorney general also penned an editorial in the St. Louis Dispatch, in which he vowed to, quote, "ensure that this tragedy can give rise to new understanding—and robust action—aimed at bridging persistent gaps between law enforcement officials and the communities we serve."
AMY GOODMAN: Also on Wednesday, St. Louis County prosecutors began presenting evidence to a grand jury that will determine whether police officer Darren Wilson is charged with a crime for killing Michael Brown. County Prosecutor Bob McCulloch said the process could last through October. His team has already interviewed Wilson and says he’ll be offered the opportunity to testify. Outside the courthouse, protesters called for McCulloch to be replaced by a special prosecutor. They note McCulloch’s father, a police officer, was killed by an African American while on duty. McCulloch responded to the calls Wednesday during an interview on KTRS radio.
    ROBERT McCULLOCH: I have absolutely no intention from walking away from the duties and the responsibilities entrusted in me by the people of this community. I’ve done it for 24 years. I’ve done, if I say so myself, a very good job at that. I’m fair and impartial in every matter that comes before us. So, when others come to me and say, you know, "We want you to go away"—and I understand that. That’s certainly—they have the ability and the right to do that. But I’ve tried to directly say, "Listen, I’m not going to do that. I am not walking away from this. I’ve been entrusted with these responsibilities." But I understand, of course, that having declared a state of emergency, Governor Nixon has the authority right now to say, "McCulloch is out of this case."
AMY GOODMAN: All of this comes as Officer Wilson remains on paid leave.
Meanwhile, a police officer caught on video threatening to kill peaceful protesters in Ferguson has been suspended indefinitely. The video from Tuesday night shows the officer pointing his semi-automatic assault rifle at protesters, saying he’ll kill them and telling them to, quote, "Go F— yourself."
Well, last night I returned from Ferguson, Missouri. While there, we visited the site where Michael Brown was killed, the road just outside the Canfield apartments. I spoke to young people who live nearby, including some of them who knew him. But first we stopped by a protest outside the Ferguson police station.
    PROTESTER 1: Lean to the right! Lean to right!
    CROWD: No justice, no peace!
    PROTESTER 1: Lean to the left! Lean to the left!
    CROWD: No justice, no peace!
    PROTESTER 1: Lean to the right! Lean to right!
    AMY GOODMAN: Can you tell me your name?
    CAT DANIELS: Cat Daniels.
    AMY GOODMAN: And is this your son?
    CAT DANIELS: This is my grandson.
    AMY GOODMAN: Your grandson. What’s your name?
    DEANDRE SMITH: DeAndre Smith.
    AMY GOODMAN: DeAndre, how old are you?
    DEANDRE SMITH: Ten.
    AMY GOODMAN: And what are you doing out here tonight?
    DEANDRE SMITH: Well, I was hanging with my nana.
    AMY GOODMAN: So, why are you here?
    CAT DANIELS: I’m here because we want to know the truth. I think we deserve to know the truth. I think the Brown family deserves some justice. So, until, you know, we get some—I mean, you’ve got to, like, charge this guy or something. Can’t just kill a kid and think that everything’s going to be all right. It’s not.
    AMY GOODMAN: Tell me what your T-shirt says.
    CAT DANIELS: My T-shirt say, "Hands up, don’t shoot."
    AMY GOODMAN: And your sign?
    CAT DANIELS: My sign say, "You shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free."
    AMY GOODMAN: Do you know the Brown family?
    CAT DANIELS: I don’t know the Brown family, but I don’t have to know them. We all standing behind them.
    AMY GOODMAN: Where are we standing right now?
    CAT DANIELS: Right now, we’re on Florissant, South Florissant Road, yeah. So, we’re over here by the Ferguson Police Department.
    AMY GOODMAN: Why here? Why are you protesting here?
    CAT DANIELS: Well, because this is a Ferguson police officer, so we need to come here, and we need to make them understand that we want justice. We’re not going to just stand around and let you just keep on running over people. This young man is 10 years old. I want to see him grow. I want to see him do something. My oldest grandson grew up, and you know what he did? He’s serving his country. So, you know, I think that young man should have had a chance to go to school and realize some dreams.
    AMY GOODMAN: Your son, did he go to Iraq or Afghanistan?
    CAT DANIELS: No, my daughter—we’re a Navy family, by the way. My husband is retired. My daughter’s still serving in Pearl Harbor, and my grandson’s in San Diego. Other son got out, and he’s in college. But I want these young ones to have their same chance.
    AMY GOODMAN: DeAndre, what do you want to be when you grow up?
    DEANDRE SMITH: Well, I want to be—I just want to serve our country so I can make a difference in the world.
    PROTESTER 2: I’m a mother before I’m anything else. My young people, I know, y’all, we’ve been wronged right now. I know we’ve been wronged. They know they’ve been wrong. But it only changes when we work together as one.
    AMY GOODMAN: So tell me your name, and tell me what your sign says. And what do you think?
    RONA: My name is Rona. And my sign is "Negro Spring." The same as the Arabs fought for their rights, for their civil rights, to oust their corrupt government, we’re fighting for our civil rights, our human rights. We would like, as an end result to this, one of the end results, for there to be a law. Police officers should not be allowed to hide behind a badge when they commit a crime. When we commit a crime, we have the penalties. They should have penalties. It’s not fair. They should not be treated like extra special humans.
    PROTESTER 3: What do we want?
    CROWD: Justice!
    PROTESTER 3: When do we want it?
    CROWD: Now!
    AMY GOODMAN: It’s around 10:00 at night, a gathering of several hundred people holding all sorts of signs, from "Negro Spring" to "Hands up, don’t shoot." They seem to be heading on down Florissant. They’re right across from the Ferguson police station, and there’s a line of riot police in front of the station. We’ll go over and talk to them, ask them what are their plans for tonight.
    I was wondering what the plans are for the police tonight.
    POLICE OFFICER 1: Ma’am, you’ll have to talk to the incident commander.
    AMY GOODMAN: Is there any curfew tonight?
    POLICE OFFICER 2: No, ma’am.
    AMY GOODMAN: Have there been any charges announced or anything like that yet?
    POLICE OFFICER 2: Not tonight that we’re aware of.
    AMY GOODMAN: OK.
    We leave the police station where the protesters have gathered across the street, and we headed to the Canfield apartments, the home of Michael’s grandmother. And there, in the middle of the road, just beyond the barricade, is the memorial for Mike Brown. The residents leave roses, pay their respects, walk around it, drive past. And people want to talk.
    Hey, can you tell me your name?
    STEVON STATOM: My name is Stevon Statom.
    AMY GOODMAN: So you live here in the Canfield apartments?
    STEVON STATOM: Yes, I do. I moved here last Friday. And—
    AMY GOODMAN: Friday, August 8?
    STEVON STATOM: Yes, August 8, yes, last Friday. And when I moved in that day, it was peaceful. Then, like, the next morning—I came, and I stayed right in that house right there. And that next morning, I woke up, and I found the body dead in the middle of the street. They left it out for like a good six to seven hours before they even tried to pick it up off the street.
    AMY GOODMAN: This was Mike Brown’s body?
    STEVON STATOM: Yes, Mike Brown.
    AMY GOODMAN: In the middle of the street here.
    STEVON STATOM: Yes, in the middle of the street. His monument is right there, if you want to go walk over there. It’s right in the middle of the street.
    AMY GOODMAN: OK. Why don’t we go with you?
    STEVON STATOM: We can go over there.
    AMY GOODMAN: So, you moved here a day before he was killed. You walked outside on Saturday, August 9th, and you saw his body laying in the road. Was anyone around his body?
    STEVON STATOM: Yes, it was a—they had, like—when I came outside, it was all blocked off, like the police blocked it off. But, like, they didn’t really try to pick the body up. They just left it there for like the whole world to see, just like everybody in the neighborhood. Like, I guess they was trying to show a point, like, "Don’t disrespect me, or this is going to happen to you." They just left it there for like a good seven or six hours. You know, they didn’t even try to pick it up.
    AMY GOODMAN: Was his body covered when you saw him?
    STEVON STATOM: No, no, no, no, no. He was just laying face down and dead in the middle of the street for hours.
    AMY GOODMAN: You just laid a rose down?
    STEVON STATOM: Yes, I did, to show my respect.
    QUENTIN BAKER: That’s what they said they stole from the gas station, the ’rillos, the cigarillos. They got those laying down here.
    AMY GOODMAN: Tell me your name.
    QUENTIN BAKER: My name’s Quentin Baker.
    AMY GOODMAN: And tell me what you’re wearing on your face. You’ve got the headband.
    QUENTIN BAKER: I’ve got the Mike Brown headband, and the "No justice, no peace" over around my mouth.
    AMY GOODMAN: And why around your mouth?
    QUENTIN BAKER: I don’t know, just to cover up my face, just for the tear gas, you know?
    AMY GOODMAN: Have you been tear-gassed yet?
    QUENTIN BAKER: Yeah, twice. Two nights in a row.
    AMY GOODMAN: And how old are you?
    QUENTIN BAKER: I’m 19 years old.
    AMY GOODMAN: And where do you live?
    QUENTIN BAKER: I live in South County, South St. Louis.
    AMY GOODMAN: And what brought you here?
    QUENTIN BAKER: Mike Brown, all this. Came to support my city, that’s all.
    AMY GOODMAN: Are you shocked by this?
    QUENTIN BAKER: Yeah. Yeah, it’s very crazy. It’s wild. This is—I came to show some peace, you know?
    AMY GOODMAN: What do you see here in this monument to Mike Brown that’s in the middle of the street—
    QUENTIN BAKER: Just candles—
    AMY GOODMAN: —where constantly cars are going by either side?
    QUENTIN BAKER: Just candles and flowers and a cross, pictures of him, all over. There’s still blood. His blood is still on the street underneath the candle wax that’s been burned.
    UNIDENTIFIED: So, this is like our awakening call to cry out for justice, to be heard. And that’s the only way that the youth know how to portray it. And hopefully we learn more and learn better ways to show it. But for now, this is our cry out for it.
    AMY GOODMAN: Do you live here at the Canfield apartments?
    UNIDENTIFIED: Yes. Yes, I live out here in St. Louis. I live out here in St. Louis on the south side. And I come out here to share my condolences, because I also knew the young fellow.
    AMY GOODMAN: You knew Mike Brown?
    UNIDENTIFIED: Yeah, and it’s tragedy, because he wasn’t the type of person that the news portray it. So—
    AMY GOODMAN: Can you tell us about Mike?
    UNIDENTIFIED: A humble guy, Michael Brown was actually a good, kind-hearted person and had a good future, had a good head on his shoulders.
    AMY GOODMAN: What’s your name?
    UNIDENTIFIED: Undisclosed. Thank you.
    RICO: I’m Rico, known in the neighborhood as Rico. I’m 22 years old.
    AMY GOODMAN: Did you know Mike Brown?
    RICO: Yes, I did. Yes, ma’am. He was a good friend of mine. Him and Dorian.
    AMY GOODMAN: Dorian Johnson?
    RICO: Yes. Yes, ma’am.
    AMY GOODMAN: They were together.
    RICO: Yes, ma’am.
    AMY GOODMAN: Were you around on August 9?
    RICO: I came after the shooting, after Mike was already pronounced dead.
    AMY GOODMAN: Can you tell me a little about him? Did he live here?
    RICO: Well, he got family that live over here in this building beside us and on up through Northwinds. He was a good friend of mine. He was a school graduate. I mean, a lot of people from black communities—you know, a lot of black people don’t graduate and finish school. They read about other stuff. And, you know, a lot of people in our community have drug addicts parents and stuff, so they have to feed for theirself and stuff and, you know, engage in stuff. And Mike wasn’t one of them. He was one of them guys who went to school, finished school. He had parents that was on him and supported him, you know.
    So, this is just uncalled for. That’s how I feel. For real, that’s how I feel. This is really uncalled for, you know. Lost a good friend, you know? It’s just not right, when we live in captivity in this neighborhood, where they want to block us in and make us feel like we’re nothing, you know what I’m saying? Where like our word don’t—we have no say so. And we live here, and we pay rent here, and we’ve been here forever. Forever.
    I just want justice served. I want to see Mike’s family happy and proud, knowing that this cop killer is off the streets and knowing that my black people is not being killed by another officer, by Darren Wilson or whoever he is, you know? But he hurt a lot of people. And my pain don’t stop. And I’m out here, and I’m going to continue being out here. I’m not going to stop. I’m not going to stop. Continue being out here supporting all my black brothers and stuff. I want them to know, I’m out here supporting, and I’m out here doing it for y’all. I like to see my young black people come together. And we all have—we all do this for Mike. I don’t want to see nobody out here looting, doing none of that stuff. I just want everybody to be peaceful, calm, when we do this for Mike. We march and everything, do this the right way.
    AMY GOODMAN: Is there usually this much air traffic in the sky?
    RICO: Yes, this has been going on every night. And there’s been kids getting maced, tear-gassed, rubber bullets. And the thing about it, it’s innocent people who live in this area. So you throw tear gas and all this stuff, and it’s messing up everybody. Everybody who want to step outside and go to their cars, they’re feeling this stuff in the air. It’s coming. Like, I had a struggle to fight just to walk from West Florissant back here to the Northwinds Bridge. I had to struggle and fight and just tell myself, "Keep going, keep going," because the tear gas was so strong, and it was breaking me down. I have asthma.
    AMY GOODMAN: And in these apartments, you’re smelling the tear gas?
    RICO: And the tear gas. The tear gas is all through here, in the homes, in everything. And they told us no curfew yesterday. By 9:00, 9:30, there was tear gas and everything. And the police officers told us theirself, "No curfew tonight. We’re going to do this the right way." But they lied to us. So, there it goes again. How are we supposed to feel like these officers can be trusted, and we’re supposed to call them for help and stuff, when at the same time we’re being abused and being lied to by you officers and being killed? And being killed, as black people. It hurts, you know? It hurts. It hurts.
    AMY GOODMAN: Who made that sign behind you?
    RICO: Which one? This cross?
    AMY GOODMAN: Right under the cross. What does it say?
    RICO: "Beware, killer cop on the loose. Watch out, children. Watch out, children." They say, "Watch out, children," because he killed the child, someone’s child. I have kids of my own. And it just hurts. Like I said, it hurts.
    AMY GOODMAN: What’s your name?
    JERODNEY MEEKS: My name’s Jerodney Meeks.
    AMY GOODMAN: And how old are you?
    JERODNEY MEEKS: I’m 26. So, he stopped the man for walking in the streets. Now, how do you get shot in your head two times and four times in your body? And he had his hands up, from the autopsy.
    RICO: And if you’re trying to stop someone, and it’s to the point where you need to fire—the officers are trained. The officers are trained to fire at legs, tase, mace, whatever. There’s no reason for—
    JERODNEY MEEKS: How did a headshot—
    RICO: Yeah, how did that all happen?
    AMY GOODMAN: Did you know Mike Brown?
    JERODNEY MEEKS: I didn’t know him, but I always be over here in this community, and heard. You know, I’m not saying I’m a perfect man, but I have a past history. And, you know, I did done things in my past that I had to face my time in courts, you know? So, to see that happen to him, and I know I have done wrong, I don’t feel like it’s right, because I know my history. So, to see that innocent person to get killed on that matter—and it had nothing to do with what happened at Ferguson Market. It’s because he was walking in the street and refused to get on the side of the sidewalk. It’s not right. And I didn’t—you know, I’m not going to criminalize myself, but I did done a lot more wrong. And I did my time, you know, and I’m out. I’m a free man. I’m a changed man. You know, I got kids to take care of. But to see that that man didn’t have an opportunity to face his day in court, it all changed—and it didn’t even have nothing to do with Ferguson Market. So, at that moment, he wasn’t being charged with nothing. It’s just that the police seen him walking in the streets, told him to get on the side, he refused to. And whatever happened from that moment, I mean, I can’t really make accusations, because I wan’t here, but from what was told, you still shouldn’t have took that man’s life. Now, he can’t see—no, he can’t have kids, see his kids grow, teach them things about life. You know, he left nothing behind. And his family never—it’s like, all the years they took to shape him and to be this person, to go to school and better theirself—like me, I didn’t go to college, I didn’t graduate from high school. So, to see a man actually do something for himself to try to change, and get his life taken, it ain’t right.
    AMY GOODMAN: Can you tell me your name and where you live?
    KOREI MOORE: Korei Moore, and I stay in Northwinds Apartments. This is not only a African-American man, but a child, nonetheless. And another mother is, you know, burying their child or, you know, putting her child to rest. I was very disturbed by it, very upset by it, because I have a 16-year-old myself, and that could have been my child or anyone else’s child out here. So, it’s very disturbing.
    AMY GOODMAN: What do you tell your 16-year-old son?
    KOREI MOORE: I tell him—I allowed him to walk with us, so I can show him that: "This could have been you. This could have been your cousins. You’re not exempt from this. It only takes seconds, the wrong identity, and I could be burying you." And like I tell him, even just beyond this setting, it’s so many things going on in the world. It’s so much just envy and grief in the world that I just—I don’t want him to be a part of it. So I make sure he’s learning things like to protest and to stand up for your rights, and also to know how to cope with the police and things of that nature, and to stay away from anything that might, you know, deter him from a good thing, because as the mother said, it is hard to get a young black man to graduate. And once you get them to graduate, this is what they succumb to. So, yeah.
    AMY GOODMAN: Did you see Mike Brown’s mother out on Saturday?
    KOREI MOORE: Yes, I did.
    AMY GOODMAN: With his body here?
    KOREI MOORE: Yes, I did.
    AMY GOODMAN: Where was his head?
    KOREI MOORE: His head was facing this way, and his body was this way, like—his head was facing towards Florissant.
    AMY GOODMAN: And he was on his stomach?
    KOREI MOORE: Yes, ma’am.
    AMY GOODMAN: He was facing down.
    KOREI MOORE: Yes, ma’am, facing down, on his stomach.
    RICO LIKE: My name’s Rico Like. I used to see him all the time, walking around—I mean, everywhere. He ain’t did nothing, don’t do nothing. That’s a peaceful guy. And what they did was wrong, man. And they’re saying that the—the police saying they either beat him up, did all this and did all that. Where he at? We want to see your face. We want to see did you got beat up. We want see—we want to see everything. Why is he hiding? Because he didn’t get beat up. I mean, God be the judge. God be the judge. And he didn’t—he an innocent man. He fell on his knees. Like, "Don’t shoot." He shot him anyway in the eye, then in the head and four times down here.
    AMY GOODMAN: Are you participating in the protests?
    RICO LIKE: Yes. I was up here yesterday, got tear-gassed and everything, couldn’t even breathe. But I made it out, though. Just "Hands up! Don’t shoot!" That’s all I got to say. RIP Mike Brown.
AMY GOODMAN: "RIP Mike Brown." Residents of the area around the Canfield apartments in Ferguson, standing around the makeshift memorial of signs, candles, stuffed animals and flowers, sitting in the middle of the road where Michael Brown took his last breaths after being gunned down by police officer Darren Wilson on August 9th. Brown’s body lay in the road for more than four hours. Near the memorial was a sign that said "Beware, killer cop on the loose. Watch out, children." This is Democracy Now!, democracynow.org, The War and Peace Report. When we come back, we’ll be joined by the head of UNICEF in Gaza, Pernille Ironside. Stay with us.
[break]
AMY GOODMAN: Lauren Hill performing a sketch of "Black Rage." She posted it online yesterday in response to the Ferguson protests and the death of Michael Brown. This is Democracy Now!, democracynow.org, The War and Peace Report. I’m Amy Goodman, with Juan González.
USA:Police fire smoke - Protesters defy curfew Image

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USA:Police fire smoke - Protesters defy curfew
USA: Police fire smoke canisters as Ferguson protesters defy curfew
One shot, 7 arrested as Ferguson police disperse protesters defying curfew
One person is in critical condition and seven people have been arrested in the latest Ferguson protest, local police said in a news conference. They also confirmed the use of tear gas.
Lessons to Learn - Ferguson Protests Image

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Lessons to Learn - Ferguson Protests
The Lessons to Learn From Ferguson Protests
Rev. Heber Brown III discusses the history of police brutality in the black community and how communities need to begin to police the police to hold them more accountable -   15 min ago

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  • Second American journalist beheaded by ISIS terrorists
    By RT A new video has been posted on the internet purported to show Islamic State militants beheading American journalist Steven Sotloff.The Associated Press and the SITE Intel Group, an organization that tracks the online activity of terrorist groups, both reported on Tuesday that the Islamic State has posted a video of the execution barely two weeks after the group formerly known as ISIS published a similar clip of American photojournalist James Foley suffering the same fate.“I’m back, Obama, and I’m back because of your arrogant foreign policy towards the Islamic State,” a masked militant believed to be the same who executed Foley addresses the president in the latest video.Kneeling in an orange jump suit, Sotloff is seen in the clip reading a statement to the president as Foley did before him.“Obama, your foreign policy of intervention in Iraq was supposed to be for preservation of American lives and interests, so why is it that I am paying the price of your interference with my life?” Sotloff asks."As your missiles continue to strike our people, our knife will continue to strike necks of your people," the masked man says before killing Sotloff. Another captured civilian — David Cawthorne Haines of the UK — will be the next murdered unless "this evil alliance of America against the Islamic State" ends, militants warn in the video. The White House could not immediately confirm the authenticity of the latest video, “A Second Message to America,” but press secretary Joshua Earnest said during a briefing on Tuesday that the administration’s “thoughts and prayers” are with Sotloff’s family. Jen Psaki, a spokesperson for the US Department of State, said she was “sickened” by the news, and British Prime Minister David Cameron called it an "absolutely disgusting, despicable act."A 31-year-old freelance journalist who has written for Time magazine and the Christian Science Monitor, among others, Sotloff was kidnapped near Aleppo, Syria in August 2013. According to a profile published in the New York Times last month, Sotloff’s family tried desperately during the last year to keep his abduction quiet due to fears that the publicity would endanger him further, but changed course recently after the Islamic State warned that he’d be among the next executed lest the United State end its campaign against the militants.Upon release of the Foley video last month, the Islamic State demanded that US President Barack Obama cease attacks on the group or else risk Sotloff becoming the next casualty of the group’s violent campaign in Iraq and Syria.Sotloff’s fate, a militant warned Pres. Obama last month, “depends on your next decision.” In response, Sotloff’s mother posted a minute-and-a-half-long video plea asking Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi to release her son.“You, the caliph, can grant amnesty. I ask you please to release my child. I ask you to use your authority to spare his life,” Shirley Sotloff pleaded. The US has since ramped up its attacks on the Islamic State, and international efforts are expected to be discussed by NATO member state’s during this week’s summit in Wales. During Tuesday’s State Dept. briefing, Psaki said that Pres. Obama has so far authorized at least 100 air strikes in Iraq against the Islamic State.
  • De-Manufacturing Consent- “Humanitarian Wars” for Imperial Dreams: Iraq, the Islamic State & James Foley
    Guillermo Jimenez | September 1, 2014 On this edition of De-Manufacturing Consent: Guillermo is joined by Daniel McAdams, executive director of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity. McAdams gives us his take on the current situation in Iraq and, as the US war machine churns out a steady stream of fear-driven propaganda and prepares for another full-on military invasion.Cutting through the media spin, this episode raises important questions regarding the Islamic State (IS/ISIS/ISIL), its origins, and motivations. Why does John McCain (interventionism’s “Energizer bunny”) like taking pictures with “bloodthirsty terrorists” so much? How does the decapitation of a US journalist stack up against red, white, and blue drone strikes, carpet bombs, and genocide? Was the James Foley video staged? Given Foley worked for USAID until at least 2010, could he have been more than just a journalist.Listen to the Preview Clip Here  
  • The Grand Saudi Reversal
    By Thierry Meyssan "Voltaire Network" While for the past 35 years Saudi Arabia has supported all the jihadist movements to the most extremist, Riyadh seems suddenly to have changed policy. Threatened in its very existence by a possible attack from the Islamic Emirate, Saudi Arabia has given the signal for the destruction of the organization. But contrary to appearances, the EIS remains supported by Turkey and Israel who sell their looted oil. Preliminary: the EIS is a Western creationThe unanimity of the Security Council against the Islamic Emirate (EIS) and the passage of the 2170 resolution are only a facade attitude. This cannot induce us to forget the state support provided the EIS and which it still has.To take only the recent events in Iraq, everyone has observed that EIS fighters entered the country in columns of brand new Humvees, straight from US American Motors factories and armed with Ukrainian materials, also new. With this equipment they seized the US weapons of the Iraqi Army. Also, everyone was amazed that the EIS had civil administrators instantly capable of taking over the management of the conquered territories and communications specialists that promote its activities on the Internet and on television; personnel obviously trained at Fort Bragg.Although US censorship has forbidden any review, we know from the British news agency Reuters that, in January 2014, a secret session of Congress voted financing and arming the Free Syrian Army, the Islamic Front, and Al-Nosra Front of the Islamic Emirate until September 30, 2014 [1]. A few days later, Al-Arabiya boasted that Prince Abdul Rahman was the real leader of the Islamic Emirate. [2] Then, on February 6, the US Secretary of Homeland Security brought together major European Interior Ministers in Poland asking them to maintain European jihadists in the Levant by prohibiting their return to their countries of origin, so the EIS would be numerous enough to attack Iraq. [3] Finally, in mid-February, a two-day seminar at the US National Security Council was attended by heads of allied secret services involved in Syria, definitely to prepare the EIS offensive in Iraq. [4] (Report of August 2012 on the alleged religious fanaticism of the "democratic opposition")It is extremely shocking to observe the international media suddenly denounce the crimes of the jihadists even though they proceeded without interruption for three years. There is nothing new in public butcheries and crucifixions: for example, the Islamic Emirate of Baba Amr, in February 2012, had established a "religious court" which condemned to death by slaughtering more than 150 people without raising any Western response nor at the United Nations [5]. In May 2013, the commander of the Al-Farouk Brigade of the Free Syrian Army (the famous "moderate") aired a video in which he cut a Syrian soldier and ate his heart. At the time, the West continued to portray the jihadists as the "moderate opposition", desperately fighting for "democracy". The BBC even gave the floor to the cannibal in order that he justify himself. There is no doubt that the difference established by Laurent Fabius between "moderate" jihadists (the Free Syrian Army and the Frente Al-Nosra-that is to say Al-Qaïda- until early 2013) and "extremist" jihadists (the Al-Nosra Front from 2013 and the EIS) is a pure artifice of communication. The case of Caliph Ibrahim is illuminating: in May 2013, during the visit of John McCain to the ASL, he was both a member of the "moderate" staff and leader of the "extremist" faction [6]. Identically, a letter from General Salim Idriss, Chief of Staff of the ASL, dated January 17, 2014, certified that France and Turkey were delivering ammunition to the ASL (one third) and to Al Qaeda (two thirds) via the ASL. Presented by the Syrian ambassador to the Security Council, Bashar Jaafari, the authenticity of the document has not been disputed by the French delegation. [7 That said, it is clear that the attitude of some NATO powers and GCC changed in August 2014 to pass from secret support to massive and ongoing support to outright hostility. Why?The Brzezinki doctrine of jihadismOne must go back 35 years to understand the importance of the transformation that Saudi Arabia-and perhaps the United States-are in the process of undergoing. Since 1979, Washington, at the instigation of the National Security Adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski, decided to support political Islam against Soviet influence, reviving the policy adopted in Egypt to support the Muslim Brotherhood against Nasser.Brzezinski decided to launch a major "Islamic revolution" from Afghanistan (then governed by the Communist regime of Muhammad Taraki) and Iran (where he himself organized the return of Imam Ruhollah Khomeini. Subsequently, this Islamic revolution was to spread throughout the Arab world and take with them the nationalist movements associated with the USSR.The operation in Afghanistan was an unexpected success: the jihadists of the World Anti-Communist League (WACL) [8] recruited Muslims and, led by the anti-Communist billionaire Osama Bin Laden Brothers, launched a terrorist campaign that led the government to appeal to the Soviets. The Red Army entered Afghanistan and was bogged down there for five years, accelerating the fall of the USSR.The operation in Iran was rather a disaster: Brzezinski was amazed to find that Khomeini was not the man he was told - an old Ayatollah trying to recover his estates confiscated by the Shah -, but a genuine anti-imperialist. Considering a little later that the word "Islamist" held not at all the same meaning for all, he decided to distinguish good Sunnis (collaborators) from the poor Shiites (anti-imperialist) and entrust the management of the former to Saudi Arabia.Finally, considering the renewal of the alliance between Washington and Saud, President Carter announced, during his speech on the State of the Union on January 23, 1980, that henceforth access to Gulf oil was a goal related to US national security.Since then, jihadists were tasked with all the low blows against the Soviets (and Russians) and against nationalist or recalcitrant Arab regimes. The period running from the accusation against the jihadists of plotting and carrying out the attacks of Sept. 11 until the announcement of the alleged death of Osama bin Laden in Pakistan (2001-11) complicated matters. The idea was both to deny any relationship with jihadists and to use them as a pretext for interventions. Things have returned to clarity in 2011 with the formal collaboration between the jihadists and NATO in Libya and Syria.The Saudi August 2014 shiftFor 35 years, Saudi Arabia has financed and armed all political Muslims as long as (1) they were Sunnis, (2) they afirmed the business model of the United States as consistent with Islam and (3 ) that in the event their country had signed an agreement with Israel it would not be questioned.For 35 years, the vast majority of Sunnis turned a blind eye to the collusion between the jihadists and imperialism. It expressed solidarity with all they have done and all that was attributed to them. Finally, it legitimized Wahhabism as an authentic form of Islam despite the destruction of holy sites in Saudi Arabia.Observing the "Arab Spring" with surprise, not having been privy to its preparation, Saudi Arabia worried about the role given by Washington to Qatar and the Muslim Brotherhood. Riyadh was soon competing with Doha in sponsoring jihadists in Libya and especially in Syria.Also, King Abdullah saved the Egyptian economy when General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, having become President of Egypt, sent him (and also the UAE) a complete copy of the police records of the Muslim Brotherhood. However, in the context of the fight against the Brotherhood, General Al-Sissi discovered and transmitted in February 2014 the Brotherhood’s detailed plan to seize power in Riyadh and Abu Dhabi. Within days the plotters were arrested and confessed, while Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates threatened Qatar, the sponsor of the Brothers, with immediate destruction if it did not abandon the Brotherhood.Riyadh did not take long to discover that the Islamic Emirate was also plagued and was about to attack it after seizing a third of Iraq.The ideological lock patiently built for 35 years has been pulverized by the UAE and Egypt. On August 11, the grand imam of Al-Azhar University, Ahmad al-Tayyeb, severely condemned the Islamic Emirate and Al-Qaeda. He was followed the next day by the Grand Mufti of Egypt, Shawki Allam [9]On August 18th and again on the 22nd, with the assistance of Cairo, Abu Dhabi bombed terrorists in Tripoli (Libya). For the first time, two Sunni states allied themselves to attack Sunni extremists in a third Sunni state. Their target was none other than an alliance including Abdelhakim Belhaj, former number three of al Qaeda, appointed military governor of Tripoli by NATO. [10] It seems that this action was undertaken without informing Washington.On August 19th, the grand mufti of Saudi Arabia, Sheikh Abdul-Aziz Al al-Sheikh, finally decided to call jihadists of the Islamic Emirate and Al Qaeda "Public Enemy #1 of Islam". [11]The consequences of the Saudi about faceSaudi Arabia’ about face was to be so rapid that regional actors have not had time to adapt and therefore find themselves with contradictory positions depending on issues. Overall, Washington’s allies condemn the Islamic Emirate in Iraq, but not yet in Syria.More surprisingly, while the Security Council has condemned the Islamic Emirate in its presidential statement of July 28th and in its resolution 2170 of August 15th, it is clear that the jihadist organization still has state support: in violation of the principles recalled or enacted by these texts: Iraqi oil plundered by the EIS transits through Turkey. It is loaded at the port of Ceyhan on oil tankers calling in Israel, then returning to Europe. For now, the names of corporate sponsors are not established, but the responsibility of Turkey and Israel is evident.For its part, Qatar, which continues to host many Muslim Brotherhood personalities, still denies supporting the Islamic Emirate. At coordinated press conferences, Russian and Syrian foreign ministers, Sergey Lavrov and Walid Moallem, called for building an international coalition against terrorism. However, the United States, while preparing ground operations on Syrian territory with the British ("Force Black intervention" [12]), refuses to ally itself with the Syrian Arab Republic and continues to demand the resignation of the elected President Bashar al-Assad. The clash which has put an end to 35 years of Saudi policy is transforming itself into a confrontation between Riyadh and Ankara. From now on, the Turkish and Syrian Kurdish party, the PKK, which is still considered by Washington and Brussels as a terrorist organization, is supported by the Pentagon against the Islamic Emirate. Indeed, contrary to the misleading presentations of the Atlanticist press, Turkish and Syrian PKK fighters, not Iraqi peshmerga of the Local Government of Kurdistan, have repelled the Islamic Emirate in recent days, with the help of US Aviation.Provisional conclusion It is unclear whether the current situation is staged or reality. Does the United States really have the intention of destroying the Islamic Emirate they created and no longer control or will they simply weaken it and keep it as a regional policy tool? Do Ankara and Tel Aviv support the EIS on behalf of or against Washington? Or again, are they playing on internal dissent in the United States? Will the the Saudis, in order to save their monarchy, resort to allying themselves with Iran and Syria, bringing down Israel’s protective buffer?Thierry Meyssan
  • Obama's 'stupid stuff' legacy
    Obama's 'stupid stuff' legacy By Pepe Escobar "Asia Times"But whether people see what's happening in Ukraine, and Russia's aggression towards its neighbors in the manner in which it's financing and arming separatists; to what's happened in Syria - the devastation that [President Bashar al-]Assad has wrought on his own people; to the failure in Iraq for Sunni and Shia and Kurd to compromise - although we're trying to see if we can put together a government that actually can function; to ongoing terrorist threats; to what's happening in Israel and Gaza - part of peoples' concern is just the sense that around the world the old order isn't holding and we're not quite yet to where we need to be in terms of a new order that's based on a set of different principles, that's based on a sense of common humanity, that's based on economies that work for all people. - President Barack ObamaLooks like US President Barack Obama made a royal mess ofwhat his mentor Dr Zbigniew "Grand Chessboard" Brzezinski taught him.Dr Zbig always quotes Sir Halford John Mackinder's three grand imperatives of imperial geostrategy; to prevent collusion and maintain security dependence among the vassals; to keep tributaries pliant and protected; and to keep the barbarians from coming together.After dabbling briefly with "leading from behind" - a non-starter - Obama finally went Mackinderesque with his stellar "Don't Do Stupid Stuff" foreign policy doctrine.Nevertheless, an always alert former secretary of state Hillary Clinton said "Don't do Stupid Stuff" isn't a "foreign policy organizing principle". Yet "Stupid Stuff" is all that the Obama foreign policy team knows how to do.Starting with Obama treating Russia under President Vladimir Putin the way Hillary's husband treated Russia under vodka container Boris Yeltsin. Then came the decision - without any public debate - to start bombing Iraq all over again. And soon Syria. Bombs Away in Syraq!So "protect" Yazidis, yes. Protect Gazans, no. "Protect" Kiev's bunch of neo-Nazis, fascists and shady oligarchs, yes. Protect Russophones in Eastern Ukraine, no.It all started with protecting Irbil - already protected by Sumerian goddess Ishtar for millennia. Then protecting Irbil and Baghdad. Then protecting all "strategic" sites in Iraq.Retired General Carter Ham of AFRICOM/"We came, we saw, he died" fame, was adamant that it will be "very difficult" to pull off so much protecting with only a few fighter jets. So drones will be needed. And troops on the ground.From protecting ExxonMobil and Chevron to double bombing in Syraq. No wonder the Return of the Living (Neo-Con) Dead are so excited. It's the Greater Middle East all over again. And guess who will be part of the coalition of the willing to fight the Caliph? Britain, Australia, Turkey, Jordan and Gulf Cooperation Council stalwarts Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.Almost the same bunch (five among seven) that enabled the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in the first place, from "Assad must go" to "good" and "bad" jihadis, and finally to ISIS (now the Islamic State) configured as the sprawling abode - complete with flush private army - of Caliph Ibrahim.And no, there's no strategy. Hee haw!Bye bye petrodollarNow let's see the dividends of "Don't Do Stupid Stuff" as applied to Ukraine.Back to the Mackinderesque Dr Zbig. Some vassals - the usual NATO/GCC suspects, but not all of them - may still believe they profit from "security dependence", while others remain nervously pliant and, in theory, feel "protected" by the Empire of Chaos.But then the Empire of Chaos "encouraged" a de facto coup. And gave the green light for the new Kiev mob to do in Eastern Ukraine roughly what Israel does in Gaza. The idea in Ukraine was to bog down Russia in its western borderlands and cut off the economic/trade link between Russia and Germany. Cut Eurasia in half.But then Obama launched a Cold War 2.0 that could easily turn hot. He destroyed the relationship with chancellor Angela Merkel and Germany and amplified the strategic embrace between the Bear and the Dragon, with the result that Beijing started paying less attention to the "pivoting to Asia" because now it enjoys even more backing from Moscow. Meanwhile, Moscow further stalls Washington's advances in Central Asia.Sanctions on Russia not only reinforce its internal market but also boost its foreign trade - way beyond European shores. Yet still it was not enough to totally sell out to Wall Street and totally wreck US foreign policy. With aides/advisors like National Security Advisor Susan Rice, Deputy National Security Advisor Benjamin Rhodes, US Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power, and Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland, who needs enemies?Obama's sanctions hysteria is leading the way to the progressive end of the US dollar as reserve currency, and the end of the petrodollar.Witness this - the most important news of these last few months after the Russia-China "gas deal of the century".Obama is accelerating the now uncontrolled collapse of the Empire of Chaos. The new axis of the future - Beijing, Moscow, Berlin - is slowly but surely coming together. There's nothing "barbarian" about them. And the bulk of the Global South supports them."The old order isn't holding" - indeed. "The Caliph is evil. So I'm applying more sanctions on Russia." How's that for Empire management? Good boy. Now pivot. With yourself. And with no strategy.Pepe Escobar is the author of Globalistan: How the Globalized World is Dissolving into Liquid War (Nimble Books, 2007), Red Zone Blues: a snapshot of Baghdad during the surge (Nimble Books, 2007), and Obama does Globalistan (Nimble Books, 2009). He may be reached at pepeasia@yahoo.com.
  • US military conducts op against extremists in Somalia
    US military conducts op against extremists in Somalia By Rt The Pentagon conducted an aerial strike against the extremist Al-Shabaab group in Somalia on Monday, US authorities said. It is reported the strike was aimed at the leader of the notorious network behind Kenya’s Westgate Mall massacre in 2013. "US military forces conducted an operation in Somalia today against the Al-Shabaab network. We are assessing the results of the operation and will provide additional information as and when appropriate," said Pentagon Press Secretary Rear Adm. John Kirby. Revealed: US operating secretly in Somalia since 1997 The American drone targeted Al-Shabaab leader Ahmed Abdi Godane as he left a meeting of the group's top leaders, a senior Somali intelligence official said, as quoted by AP. Godane is the leader of the Sunni extremist group, which is believed to have formed a partnership with Al-Qaeda. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the aerial attack occurred in a forest near the Sablale district, 105 miles (170 kilometers) south of Mogadishu, where Al-Shabaab has a training base. "There was an airstrike near Sablale. We saw something," Abdiqadir Mohamed Nor, governor of Somalia's Lower Shabelle region, told AP. US forces reportedly launched Hellfire missiles from a drone at two vehicles in southern Somalia with the intention of taking out Al-Shabaab's top leader, NBC news reported, citing an unnamed US official. The military action against the East African country comes almost exactly one year after the terrorist group attacked the upscale Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya, killing at least 67 people and injuring dozens. Journalists in Somalia said suspected US drones fired missiles near the port city of Barawe, a stronghold for Al-Shabaab, The Washington Post reported. The Pentagon is still awaiting word on whether the attack was successful.   Islamist fighters loyal to Somalia’s Al-Qaida inspired al-Shebab group perform military drills at a village in Lower Shabelle region, some 25 kilometres outside Mogadishu.(AFP Photo / Abdurashid Abdulle ) This is not the first time this year that the US has conducted airstrikes in the region. Last October, the Pentagon initiated a drone strike that killed Al-Shabaab's top explosives expert, while another missile strike, in January of this year, killed a high-ranking intelligence officer of the group. The latest US drone strike comes after a group of suspected Al-Shabaab members had attempted to free other militants held in a high-security prison in Mogadishu. Somalia's government forces, which have been battling the Sunni militant group since 2006, regained control of the prison on Monday. Al-Shabaab is now mostly active in Somalia's rural regions after being ousted from the capital by African Union forces in 2011. Also on Monday, the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), a regional peacekeeping mission operated by the African Union announced its forces, working jointly with the Somalia National Army, had liberated several towns as they advanced on the strategic town of Jalalaqsi. "The Somali National Army supported by AMISOM forces have faced little resistance from their advancement as Al-Shabaab simply melted away when they heard the aligned forces [were] approaching," AMISOM announced in a statement. Al-Shabaab, which joined forces with Al-Qaeda in 2012, is considered a terrorist organization by the United States and several other Western countries.
  • Ukraine: the Ugly Truth
    Ukraine: the Ugly Truth Kiev's War Against Freedom of Speech September 02, 2014  "Counter Punch" By VLADISLAV GULEVICH The US State Department has given its support to the military operation undertaken by Kiev in Donbass. Jen Psaki, spokesperson for the US Department of State, stated that Kiev has the right to secure order and peace on its territory.How Ukrainian authorities secure order and peace, Jen Psaki should ask the people of Donbass. But Western journalists prefer not to speak with the people living in the war zone. They avoid citing any word which could cast doubt on Kiev`s policy.On the other hand, they easily rely on official Ukrainian sources and repeat their false, office-made “news” about Russian aggression and rebels killing their own population. Although only insane people would kill those who give them food and other support, a support essential to the Donbass guerillas, the myth about rebels killing their own families is still alive.If Westerners could see what is really going on in Donbass, they would have a completely different picture. Plenty of videos can be found on various websites showing dead civilians, slaughtered by Ukrainian artillery or aviation. On the videos, survivors say clearly that people are being killed by Ukrainians from Kiev and not by the rebels. But pro-Kiev media and its Western allies turn a deaf ear to their sufferings.After the Lugansk administration building was bombed by a Ukrainian aircraft on June 2, it became clear to all that the pro-Western government in Kiev was ready to cross the red line. Here is a video taken just after the bombing. Among the victims were several women and the video shows them still alive but mortally wounded.On July 27, after the bombing of Gorlovka, there were as many as 30 corpses in the streets. Among them were a 23-year-old mother embracing her little daughter, as witnessed in this video. Here one can see the aftermath of the Ukrainian bombing of civilian neighborhoods near Lugansk on August 15: two old ladies torn apart by missiles from Kiev. Their companion tells the cameraman the details of their death: the women didn`t manage to reach the basement in time, where locals habitually hide from the “Ukrainian liberators”.Four days later a similar event took place: at least five residents of Makeevka near Donetsk were killed by Ukrainian bombs. Here are the victims of the Ukrainian bombing of Zugres, in the Donetsk region: a van full of corpses including a five year-old child. And here is the result of another bombing in Donetsk: women and children are regular victims of the Ukrainian army.Such events have become part of everyday life for the inhabitants of Donbass. Independent cameramen are trying to bring the truth to the Ukrainian and Western public but this is no easy task.Firstly, it is very difficult to publish the videos, because internet connection is now a luxury for Donbass. The Ukrainian army has destroyed not only electricity plants but water pipes and gas lines as well.Secondly, Ukrainian forces are arresting journalists and people making videos, and treating them as criminals. Kiev has unleashed a real war against freedom of speech. Any video or text criticizing the Ukrainian government is considered as “support for Donbass terrorists.” Making such videos means risking your life or freedom.This affects journalists beyond Donbass as well. The Security Service of Ukraine (the equivalent of the American FBI) pays regular visits to intractable reporters and throws them in prison with no scruples. Recently my empty apartment in Kirovograd was visited by agents of the Security Service of Ukraine. I was lucky enough to be in Russia but my neighbors were questioned about me.The desire to smash any kind of resistance in the country has become an obsession of the Ukrainian authorities. The declaration recently made by the head of Ukrainian Officers’ Union, Evgeniy Lupakov, where he said he wanted to hang the “Donbass terrorists” on street poles, is of utmost importance and direst foreboding.Will peace come to Ukraine? Will Ukrainians be able to freely express their opinion? The future will tell.Vladislav Gulevich is a Ukrainian journalist and political analyst who has recently fled to Russia. He can be reached at kwonltd@rambler.ru.
  • Iran unveils high-tech radar systems
    Iran unveils high-tech radar systems By PressTV Iran has unveiled two domestically-manufactured state-of-the-art radar systems capable of detecting stealth aircraft and long-distance targets.The advanced radar systems, Arash-2 and Kayhan, were unveiled on Monday on the occasion of the national Iranian Air Defense Day in a ceremony attended by high-ranking military commanders, including Commander of Khatam al-Anbiya Air Defense Base Brigadier General Farzad Esmaili.The Iranian commander said Kayhan, which is a two-dimensional radar system, is capable of detecting and tracking hostile aerial targets, including conventional aircraft and stealth jets that fly on high altitudes.The Arash-2 radar system can track targets at an estimated altitude of 100,000 feet, Esmaili stated.The Iranian commander also said Talash-3, which is a new indigenous surface-to-air missile defense system and which was successfully test-fired recently, will be unveiled on September 22.September 22 marks the beginning of the Sacred Defense Week, which commemorates the bravery and sacrifices of the Iranian soldiers who fought in the 1980-1988 Iraqi-imposed war and defended their country against enemy aggression.In recent years, Iran has made great strides in its defense sector and attained self-sufficiency in producing essential military equipment and systems.The Islamic Republic has repeatedly assured other countries that its military might poses no threat to other states, saying that its defense doctrine is entirely based on deterrence.YH/HSN/HJL
  • Russia to adjust military doctrine due to NATO expansion, Ukraine crisis
    Russia to adjust military doctrine due to NATO expansion, Ukraine crisis By RT Moscow is to review its military doctrine, a move that is caused by expansion of NATO in Eastern Europe, problems of missile defense and the crisis situation in neighboring Ukraine, says an official from the Russia’s Security Council. “I have no doubts that the issue of drawing of military infrastructure of NATO member-countries to the borders of our country, including via enlargement, will remain one of the external military threats for the Russian Federation,” Mikhail Popov, deputy secretary of the Security Council said in an interview to RIA Novosti. All NATO’s actions show that both the US and NATO are trying to escalate a deterioration of relations with Russia, he added. “We consider that defining factor in [Moscow’s] relations with NATO will remain the unacceptability for Russia of the expansion plans of alliance’s military infrastructure to our borders, including via enlargement,” he stated. Establishing and deploying of strategic missile defense systems which are undermining the global stability, as well as bringing the weapons into space, will also remain major military threats for Russia, he added. “The USA wants to strengthen its troops in Baltic States. [They] have already decided to transfer its heavy weapons and military equipment, including tanks and armored infantry vehicles, to Estonia. And all this next to Russia’s border.” The acting military doctrine was adopted in 2010. The new version will be released by the end of 2014, said Popov. According to Popov, the pursuit of the USA and NATO members to increase its strategic offensive potential is becoming more evident. They are trying to do this “at the expense of development of a global missile defense system” and “the elaboration of new weapons, including advanced hypersonic weapon (AHW).”   Reuters / Kacper Pempel The 2010 military doctrine caused the most acute reaction in the USA and NATO, said Popov. “Many high-ranked officials reproached the leaders of our country saying that NATO isn’t a Russia’s enemy and will never attack Russia. But is that true?” he asked. “We were assured of good intentions, but the actions of recent years show entirely different things.” He added that Russia had not managed to establish an equal dialogue with its Western partners. “Everyone waits one-sided concessions from Russia in many international relations issues.” According to Popov, “the role of Russia in the Ukraine crisis is subjectively defined and thus wrong conclusions are drawn and wrong measures are applied." “There is an unprecedented informational-propagandist campaign against Russia. The image of the enemy is presented in the face of Russia and its politics is considered as a new threat to NATO.” ‘We’re open to cooperation in Arctic’ The military doctrine will also take into account the stable development of the Arctic – a region thought to contain vast reserves of oil and gas. “The major national interests of Russia in this region will be the use of the Arctic as a resource base capable of providing the needs of Russia in hydrocarbon riches, water bio resources and other strategic material for solving social-economic tasks.” Popov added that Russia “is open for cooperation in the Arctic.” “We not only call for cooperation, but also confirm this intention. Russia’s Security Council in the Arctic Circle is organizing meetings with the officials of the countries of the Arctic Council which show our objects,” he said. “By the way, not all the countries of the region show the same goodwill and openness.” The five Arctic states - Canada, Denmark, Norway, Russia and the US – have for several years now been in a bitter dispute over how to divide up this resource-rich region. ‘Any aggression against Crimea is aggression against Russia’ “Today Crimea is a territory of Russian Federation, and military aggression against Crimea will be considered as aggression against Russian Federation with all ensuing consequences,” said Popov. “The military unit in Crimea, set by the president’s [Vladimir Putin] decision, is self-sufficient and is capable of repelling an attack of a potential aggressor on the territory of Russia,” he added. The tasks of Black Sea fleet and the military units on the peninsula remain the same in Crimea – to provide military security of the country. “I would like to stress that the borders of the Russia Federation with the CIS [Commonwealth of Independent States], including those with Ukraine, are not covered by the military, its control is performed via customs services,” said Popov.
  • IAEA investigators: Audit reveals US, not Iran the problem
    IAEA investigators: Audit reveals US, not Iran the problem by  Gordon Duff, VT  Sr. Editor   … with  Press TV, Tehran Editor's note:  Veterans Today has been releasing the proof that the 9-11 event was not only the hoax of the century, but hiding what really happened from the public has put the US and the rest of the world in more danger than the threat of all the real terrorist groups put together a 100-fold. The death and destruction that was triggered with the insider-outsider attack on that day continues to be an ongoing breach of national security, because some extremely dangerous people were left fully operational. We have heard whispers of nuclear blackmail having something to do with it. But we don't need to focus on what-ifs when we have the two most important sources we could possibly have -- the IAEA highly trained inspectors and the boutique nuke weapons designers themselves -- both motivated to force something being done to arrest the real perpetrators and hunting the remaining weapons down. Nuclear blackmail is a game that two, or even three can play. The US and the West have killed 170,000 Syrians so far, when they presented no military threat whatsoever. Gaza added 12,000 casualties recently, and the Ukrainians are way above that because their released figures are a bad joke. NATO wants to take on Russia, a mistake, and yet Moscow has also been victim to these mini nuke bombings. Gosh, who looks like they might be in the terrorism business? Do body-counts not matter any more? Is NATO or any country's security organs making a public effort to protect us from these nuclear terrorists? There are only a few options. One, they are among the perpetrators themselves. Two, they know who they are, but have done nothing because they would fear a revolution if their people learned they have stood down. And last, they know who it is, but have been compromised somehow. Gordon has been fighting since 1969. It’s time to give him some help. Despite our long series of Gordon’s articles already published, the phone has not rung once from any mass media, or the White house. No political person has wanted to lean more, no think tank, academic institution, major vet org, religious group or ex-president. No institution has shown any interest, other than the weapons designers and the IAEA people. That convinces me that nothing will be done until the public forces “them” to. So it’s time to pony up to the table, folks, and carry the fight to the front doors where the chickenhawks are hiding. We appreciate the Facebook postings, and you all sending these articles out to your email lists. But I have to ask you to do more — you have to engage these people locally where you are… face to face. Those who have been dropping this material on us are going to stop when they see the public has quit. They have done this so the public would have one last shot, and if they blow it… there won’t be any more. They will retire from the field… Jim W. Dean ] ________________________________   -  First published  …  August 27, 2014  -   Plutonium Pit Bisector – Livermore Laboratory Over a period of 20 years, hundreds of weapons-grade nuclear “pits” were stolen from the US by high ranking government officials and handed out “like candy bars” as bribes, for making terror weapons and generating billions in revenue used to rig American elections. Weapons from these demolished the World Trade Center on 9/11, according to the classified Department of Energy report and make up Israel’s entire nuclear arsenal. Now, facts gleaned during an ongoing highly classified audit of these crimes threatening the entire globe are being leaked to the public. All information within this article is fully confirmed by multiple sources including IAEA investigators, members of the US Department of Energy/IAEA audit team and sources within US military intelligence. Investigators for the International Atomic Energy Agency, tasked with, among other things, guaranteeing that Iran’s nuclear program is peaceful, initially came forward with a startling story about the illegal diversion of weapons-grade nuclear material by the United States. The IAEA, a UN agency that investigates issues of nuclear proliferation around the world, despite newspaper reports to the contrary, has found egregious threats far greater than anything the public is told Iran may or may not pose. In an interview with an IAEA investigator and nuclear physicist, a timeline that ties Israel and the US, not only to 9/11 as an “inside job” but other global threats as well, is established. ______________________________ VANUNU We all owe Vanunu a huge debt of gratitude. Israeli nuclear whistleblower Mordechai Vanunu, kidnapped and imprisoned in Israel for decades, had told the world about Israel’s supposedly secret nuclear program. Now, for the first time, we have access to information covering the time period after Vanunu fled Israel, information tying Israel to nuclear weapons theft, to nuclear proliferation and to nuclear terrorism. Vanunu, while working at Israel’s nuclear weapons production facility, got “laid off” due to the shutdown of Dimona in the 1986/88 time period. No PU (plutonium) to process, no work. The Dimona reactor had stopped producing nuclear material above 20% grade as the result of an accident tied to overuse and poor design of cooling and other systems. Dimona was and is a “death trap.” IAEA sources tell us that Israel’s nuclear arsenal at the time, because of low quality “unmatchable” pits, low production levels and an aging inventory, was a few years from non-existence. Normal deterioration would, by 9/11/2001 leave Israel “nuclear weapons free” unless something could be done to correct that problem. ________________ STEALING AMERICAN NUKES The Davy Crockett tactical nuke The W-54 warhead has a large, high quality oblong plutonium pit. 400 of these weapons were made for use in nuclear artillery and other weapons, with design variations allowing vastly different output from the same basic design. At the end of the Cold War, these weapons were, as a result of a combination of obsolescence and treaty, retired from service. Our IAEA sources report: “The W-54′s were placed in military cold storage after 1986, and they were retired in 1993 by Bush 41. They were then written off the books during the Clinton era, 1994-2000, and allegedly disposed of by converting them into MOX (multiple oxide, as used in Fukushima) fuel at the Savannah River complex. The Savannah River recycling plant had, for decades, and still has serious security and safety concerns. ‘Someone’ or ‘some people’ at a very high level simply did a paperwork switch and shipped the non-destroyed pits out the back door. The thefts started under Clinton and ended under Bush 2. Cheney controlled it under Bush 1 and 2, and Bill Richardson (a “rabid Zionist”) at DOE under Clinton. In order to pull off the largest theft of WMDs in world history, they had to put their people in place first. Wayne Madsen’s article and the murder of former CIA agent Roland Carnaby by Houston Police working with the Mossad put too much heat on “them”, so they had to lay low. Our source at the IAEA states that he believes “Barky” (President Barack Obama’s nickname) allegedly stepped in after sacking Rahm Emanuel for obvious security breaches, as documented by counter intel. According to our source, Rahm Emanuel, no surprise to anyone, was acting as an Israeli operative and using his position in the White House to cover up discrepancies in America’s nuclear inventory and to derail any audit and/or subsequent investigation. This was made easy for Rahm Emanuel because the problem is that the DOE (Department of Energy) is civilian-run, while the DoD is military-run. The compartmentalization of the two services for security reasons simply helps in allowing the material to disappear that much easier, and in the process, for the theft of nuclear weapons from the US to be surprisingly simple. ___________________________________ “IS THAT A NUKE IN YOUR POCKET…or are you happy to see me?” According to sources at both the US Department of Energy and IAEA, there is no accurate count or any record of where American weapons-grade nuclear materials are. From the IAEA: “There is no independent cross auditing of the two services. The military can simply write off warheads without explanation to any other agency and once they are written off by the military and transferred to DOE, they don’t have to account for them to the military. There is no independent nuclear accounting agency for this stuff that reports directly to congress. They don’t audit these things like banks do. They just review the paper work and rubber stamp its approval. The paperwork is nowhere near reality. So it’s very easy to illegally transfer these to third parties, so long as they are dismantled pits only.” ________________________________ ISRAEL LOBBY CONVINCES WHITE HOUSE NUKE “PITS” ARE “USELESS”   Israeli nuclear pit – Dimona…Vanunu photo Israel’s virtual stranglehold on the Pentagon during the Bush 2 administration had serious consequences on US nuclear policy. At a time when American nuclear scientists and defense strategists were moving toward mini and micro nukes, inexpensive and simple to produce using decommissioned nuclear weapons, Israeli operatives who virtually “ran” the Pentagon under Bush 2, pushed through orders to “discard” much of America’s plutonium inventory. The plan was to “redirect” it leaving virtually no trail, other than tracking done by John O’Neill, Roland Carnaby and John Wheeler III, all of whom met mysterious violent deaths. From the IAEA: “The stupid generals did not know that they were perfectly good for making mini and micro nukes. The knowledge of how to make a mini nuke was so compartmentalized that no one in power knew. The statements made by Condoleezza Rice after 911 about how small a nuke could be was the result. Most of that testimony to congress is still classified.” ______________________________________ INSIDE THE AUDIT When America finally awakened, up to a third of its nuclear arsenal was unaccounted for, with 350 W54 “nuclear pits” simply missing, presumed stolen. In an interview with a member of the audit team tasked with locating the missing nukes, including those used on 9/11, a team member told us: “My work on the ‘counter intel project’ (independent outside audit) was limited to pit counting and matching only (metallurgy). I was not allowed to know anything else officially. That I got thru third parties whom I was working with, who got the full audit report, and what they did with it, I was never told. All I know is that I was interviewed, questioned and had to sign a sworn legal statement on my work for ‘G-2’ and I was advised of my security agreements on non-disclosure of classified information. That is all that I am legally allowed to tell you.” Our source went on to provide context material, telling us why these missing nuclear pits were so dangerous, and the potential consequences of pervasive high-level corruption within America’s government. “There were over 1 to 2 thousand pits manufactured using the original W54 pit molds and implosion design. They made more of this design than any other nuclear weapon implosion system. The simplicity of the implosion system made it very cheap and easy to copy. All you need is the pit. Even after reprocessing, it would still work at lower yields. No fancy electronics or exotic and hard-to-copy shape charges needed. It is the simplest nuclear warhead design to make. Anyone with a really good automotive machine shop can copy the casing and implosion system. RDX or plastic explosive can be used for the compression charges. The compression pistons are made of tungsten alloy. The pit geometry and size is the only part that is classified. Under Rumsfeld, Richardson, ETC, and company, they were written off the books and passed out to our ‘friends’ (including enough to make up the entire Israeli nuclear arsenal) like candy bars for good behavior and UN votes.”  _______________________________ 9/11 From a White House and Pentagon aide on the staff of Paul Wolfowitz: “Once the Israelis got the nuclear pits, they double crossed us. No one ever thought that they would be so ruthless to do what they did in using them to destroy the World Trade Center on 9/11.  The problem is the chemical fingerprint of leftover PU-239 fallout proves that it was made in the USA at Hanford. You can’t hide this. A simple chemical mass spectrometry test will reveal it. That’s the problem. Half of Washington has known for a decade that 9/11 was an ‘inside job’ done with stolen American weapons”   CONCLUSION In 2003, the original Department of Energy 9/11 report was released to the White House, select members of the Department of Defense, senior Pentagon staffers and select Federal Judges. These judges were tasked with “killing” any civil or criminal cases filed related to 9/11. More than two dozen senior members of Congress were briefed also. For over a decade, this cabal, most of whom are still in military, government or judicial posts of some kind, continue to facilitate this betrayal.
  • NATO’s Options in Ukraine. “Aggressive Military Aid” Directed against Russia
    NATO’s Options in Ukraine. Propaganda Retrenchment Before “Aggressive Military Aid” Directed against Russia By Tony Cartalucci "New Eastern Outlook" After provoking what is increasingly a devastating and expanding conflict in Ukraine, NATO appears to be out of options as its proxy regime loses its grip on both its military campaign against its own population in eastern Ukraine, as well as political control in the capital of Kiev itself. However, despite the turn of events, with NATO apparently rudderless, those seeking to undo and reserve the damage the West has created in Eastern Europe must not become complacent. NATO still possesses several options with which it can respond to its deteriorating proxy regime and the eroding of its interests both in the region, and around the world. Propaganda Retrenchment Before Aggressive Military Aid  As the West has done in Syria, it now seeks to do in Ukraine – a complete retrenchment of the official narrative regarding the nature of the ongoing conflict. Previously, the Western media has gone through great lengths to obscure overt Nazism running throughout both the political front it is propping up in Kiev, as well as across the irregular forces sent alongside what remains of Ukraine’s national army. Western media outlets have briefly touched on the issue in attempts to mitigate and manage growing public concern. Regarding the formation by the Interior Ministry in Kiev of a battalion of Nazis – the Azov Battalion – the BBC would publish, “Ukraine conflict: ‘White power’ warrior from Sweden,” the Telegraph would publish, “Ukraine crisis: the neo-Nazi brigade fighting pro-Russian separatists,” and Al Jazeera would publish, “Driven by far-right ideology, Azov Battalion mans Ukraine’s front line.” Each would in turn, admit that literal Nazis are fighting on behalf of the NATO-backed regime in Kiev – with the regime itself raising ultra-right, Neo-Nazi battle formations. But each would also attempt to downplay the implications and role of Nazism within the ongoing conflict. That was until Foreign Policy magazine published its article, praising what it called, “fascist defenders of freedom.” It’s article titled, “Preparing For War with Ukraine’s Fascist Defenders of Freedom,” claims: The Azov Battalion — so named for the Sea of Azov on which this industrial city is located — is one of dozens of volunteer battalions fighting alongside pro-government forces in eastern Ukraine. After separatist troops and armor attacked from the nearby Russian border and took the neighboring town of Novoazovsk, this openly neo-Nazi unit has suddenly found itself defending the city against what Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko called a Russian invasion. Pro-Russian forces have said they are fighting against Ukrainian nationalists and “fascists” in the conflict, and in the case of Azov and other battalions, these claims are essentially true. Effectively, Foreign Policy finally admits that indeed, warnings that NATO was backing literal Nazis in Ukraine were more than mere “Kremlin propaganda,” but rather the unequivocal truth. Foreign Policy would continue by reporting: Besides a strong defense, Ukraine needs the support of the West to defeat the invaders, Odnorozhenko argued. He called for the Europe and the United States to take a more aggressive stance on Russia and begin shipping weapons to Ukrainian pro-government forces. And that is precisely what the United States and Europe are attempting to do – begin shipping more weapons and other forms of lethal aid to continue propping up the regime in Kiev. By embracing the Nazi militants fighting on behalf of Kiev, and simply claiming Russia is “worse,” the West can repeat the strategy it used in Syria after it became apparent that militants fighting the government in Damascus were hardcore terrorists driven by sectarian extremism and aligned to Al Qaeda. In fact, it was also Foreign Policy who, in mid-2012, published an article titled, “Two Cheers for Syrian Islamists: So the rebels aren’t secular Jeffersonians. As far as America is concerned, it doesn’t much matter.” The FP article also attempted to create a narrative that portrayed the Syrian government as a more pressing issue than revelations that NATO-backed militants were sectarian extremists, not the “pro-democracy freedom fighters” they were portrayed as being during and directly after the so-called “Arab Spring.” Foreign Policy would also create an array of excuses explaining why militants were extremists – a strategy expected to play out again as Kiev’s Nazism continues to emerge into greater public view. By embracing and excusing two abhorrent ideologies and the heavily armed militant groups espousing them, NATO is able to continue backing both terrorists in Syria and Nazis in Ukraine. With the burden of covering up Nazism in Ukraine “off NATO’s chest,” it can commit to a more aggressive strategy of arming and aiding them. Direct NATO Intervention  The self-destructive fleeing forward of the West generally takes the form of political destabilizations, terrorism, false-flag attacks, incremental mission creep, and covert proxy wars. What it has learned from Russia in both 2008 in Georgia and again this year in Crimea, is that direct, unpredictable, bold moves can pay off. NATO recently has been very public in stating it has no intention of intervening in Ukraine. Since NATO perpetually keeps the threat of military intervention “on the table” for all other conceivable conflicts across the planet, it is strange that both it, and its proxy regime in Kiev, have gone through extra efforts to insist such a scenario in Ukraine is neither desired, nor even “on the table.” With NATO building up troops in Eastern Europe, and its attempts to lull Russia into a false sense of security, planners in Moscow, eastern Ukrainians confronting NATO-backed troops on the battlefield in Ukraine, and in theaters across the region, sudden NATO intervention must be accounted for, as well as a swift counterstroke to disrupt what will be a precarious proposition for Western interests unaccustomed to such a risky move, and merely depending on shock, awe, and surprise to follow it through. Incremental Escalation  Barring a negotiated settlement brokered by Kiev that sees its forces withdrawn from eastern Ukraine and contested provinces forfeited to rebels, it is likely NATO will continue incremental escalation combining both an increasingly aggressive strategy of arming and aiding Kiev’s forces regardless of their overt Nazism, as well as an incremental NATO build-up along Ukraine’s borders and covertly within them. Whether NATO commits to a more desperate strategy entirely depends on whether or not this incremental escalation can continue at a quicker pace than the regime in Kiev can collapse. With NATO and the special interests driving its agenda failing in Ukraine and floundering in Syria, the West has exhibited signs of dangerous desperation causing lapses in judgement and an overall lack of deep, coherent, strategic planning. It has gone from forcing its enemies to react to its provocations in 2011, to a series of backpedaling reactions in the face of formidable counterstrokes made in return ever since. An enemy that is desperate, is an enemy that is dangerous. Feeling it has nothing to lose, it may commit to an increasingly reckless strategy of provocations in hopes that its enemies’ caution and reason force them to back down. Tony Cartalucci, Bangkok-based geopolitical researcher and writer, especially for the online magazine