MCViewPoint

Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

Posts Tagged ‘John Bolton’

Lies About Iran Killing US Troops in Iraq Are a Ploy to Justify War – Antiwar.com Original

Posted by M. C. on July 10, 2019

https://original.antiwar.com/porter/2019/07/09/lies-about-iran-killing-us-troops-in-iraq-are-a-ploy-to-justify-war/

One of the many myths that have been used to justify the push for war with Iran led by National Security Adviser John Bolton and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is that Tehran is responsible for the killing of more than 600 U.S. troops during the Iraq War.

Special Representative for Iran Brian Hook, whose job is to round up international support for the Trump administration’s campaign of “maximum pressure” on Iran, presented the charge at a State Department press briefing on April 2. “I can announce today, based on declassified US military reports,” Hook said, “that Iran is responsible for the deaths of 608 American service members. This accounts for 17 percent of all deaths of US personnel in Iraq from 2003 to 2011.”

Navy Commander Sean Robertson followed up with an email to media outlets pushing that same line. When this writer asked Robertson for further clarification of the origins of that figure, however, he acknowledged that the Pentagon doesn’t have any study, documentation, or data to provide journalists that would support such a figure.

In fact, the myth that Tehran is responsible for killing over 600 US troops in the Iraq War is merely a new variant of a propaganda line that former Vice President Dick Cheney used to attempt to justify a war against Iran more than a decade ago. Reviewing the history of that earlier effort is necessary to understand why the new myth is a palpable lie…

The New York Times, Associated Press, and other outlets released stories claiming that Bergner had said Iranian agents helped plan the Karbala attack. Within hours, Sen. Joe Lieberman issued a press release saying that the Iranian government had “declared war on us.” Bergner’s comments and Lieberman’s statement set the stage for the unanimous passage the following week of a Senate resolution that the murder of American military personnel by Iran was “an intolerable act of hostility against the United States.”

Around the time Lieberman was introducing that resolution (in partnership with four Republican senators), Cheney proposed in a meeting with other senior officials that if the United States obtained hard evidence of Iranian support for Shiite militias killing US forces in Iraq, such as fighters or weapons crossing into Iraq from an IRGC base in Iran linked to that assistance.

Defense Department officials quashed the proposal, however, by demanding that Cheney’s staff explain how this military escalation would unfold, and how it would end, according to J. Scott Carpenter former deputy assistant secretary of state, in a 2008 interview with this writer. Cheney’s staff couldn’t provide satisfactory answers.

When officials of the Trump administration claim that Iran is responsible for US deaths in Iraq, they are following Dick Cheney’s playbook. As the Bolton-Pompeo team tries to steer the US toward attacking Iran, it is important to draw that parallel to Cheney’s strategy, and understand the history behind this push for war.

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Bolton Demands Iran Abandon Non-Existent Nuclear Arms Program – News From Antiwar.com

Posted by M. C. on July 9, 2019

https://news.antiwar.com/2019/07/08/bolton-demands-iran-abandon-non-existent-nuclear-arms-program/

US officials are continuing to express demands that Iran get rid of its nuclear weapons program. This is a long-standing demand, and Iran is well aware of it. The problem is Iran doesn’t have such a program, and has repeatedly disavowed ever having a program in the future.

They might as well not bother to have spent the last 16 years disavowing arms, with hawkish John Bolton clearly acting like it never happened, saying the US is determined to “increase the pressure on the Iranian regime until it abandons its nuclear weapons program.”…

US officials have been reiterating the idea of an Iranian “nuclear threat” so long, and against all reason, that at this point the facts don’t matter for most US officials. Policy is to escalate sanctions, and the escalation has become an end unto itself…

This puts Iran in a tough position with the US, because it plainly doesn’t matter what Iran promises, what Iran does, or what Iranian leaders declare as religiously forbidden. The US will always lead with the same nonsensical demand, and US officials will always feel justified with threatening Iran over plain lies.

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Trump: War President or Anti-Interventionist? – Antiwar.com Original

Posted by M. C. on June 25, 2019

Yet, what vital interest of ours does Iran today threaten?

https://original.antiwar.com/buchanan/2019/06/24/trump-war-president-or-anti-interventionist/

Visualizing 150 Iranian dead from a missile strike that he had ordered, President Donald Trump recoiled and canceled the strike, a brave decision and defining moment for his presidency.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, John Bolton and Vice President Mike Pence had signed off on the strike on Iran as the right response to Tehran’s shootdown of a U.S. Global Hawk spy plane over the Gulf of Oman.

The U.S. claims the drone was over international waters. Tehran says it was in Iranian territory. But while the loss of a $100 million drone is no small matter, no American pilot was lost, and retaliating by killing 150 Iranians would appear to be a disproportionate response.

Good for Trump. Yet, all weekend, he was berated for chickening out and imitating President Barack Obama. U.S. credibility, it was said, has taken a big hit and must be restored with military action…

Monday, the president tweeted: “The U.S. request for Iran is very simple – No Nuclear Weapons and No Further Sponsoring of Terror!”

But Iran has no nuclear weapons, has never had nuclear weapons, and has never even produced bomb-grade uranium.

According to our own intelligence agencies in 2007 and 2011, Tehran did not even have a nuclear weapons program.

Under the 2015 nuclear deal, the JCPOA, the only way Iran could have a nuclear weapons program would be in secret, outside its known nuclear facilities, all of which are under constant U.N. inspection.

Where is the evidence that any such secret program exists?

And if it does, why does America not tell the world where Iran’s secret nuclear facilities are located and demand immediate inspections?

“No further sponsoring of terror,” Trump says.

But what does that mean? Read the rest of this entry »

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The Fact That Americans Need To Be Deceived Into War Proves Their Underlying Goodness – Caitlin Johnstone

Posted by M. C. on June 24, 2019

https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2019/06/22/the-fact-that-americans-need-to-be-deceived-into-war-proves-their-underlying-goodness/

Last night Fox’s Tucker Carlson praised Trump’s decision not to go forward with a planned attack against Iran which the president claims would have killed approximately 150 people in response to a downed drone, which if true would have been a profoundly barbaric response to a broken toy plane and would have led to retaliations from Iran, followed by a chain of military actions which could have escalated God knows how far.

Carlson, who has been credited with persuading Trump against further military escalations with Iran, lit into the neoconservative elements of Trump’s cabinet with unprecedented viciousness. He called National Security Advisor John Bolton a “bureaucratic tapeworm” who never suffers any consequences for his relentless warmongering and accusing him and his collaborators of deliberately engineering a provocation to lead to direct military confrontation. Carlson urged Trump to expunge the influencers who are pushing for a war with Iran, and cautioned that it would cost him re-election.

“Bombing Iran would have ended [Trump’s] political career in a minute,” Carlson said. “There’d be no chance of re-election after that.”

Carlson’s first guest, The American Conservative‘s Robert Merry, plainly stated the likely reason for Bolton’s deceitful manipulations, saying that Americans are typically reluctant to go to war and citing a few of the historical instances in which they were tricked into consenting to it by those who desire mass military violence.

“So, you’re saying that there is a long, almost unbroken history of lying our way into war?” Carlson asked his guest rhetorically.

“Lying sometimes, not always lying, sometimes it’s manipulations, but yeah,” Merry replied. “America’s warmaking history indicates that there’s been significant instances of that kind of maneuvering, manipulations, and in some instances lying–Vietnam is a great example–to get us into wars that the American people weren’t clamoring for.”

Both men are correct. The US empire does indeed have an extensive and well-documented history of using lies, manipulations and distortions to manufacture consent for war from a populace that would otherwise choose peace, and a Reuters poll released last month found that only 12 percent of Americans favor attacking Iranian military interests without having been attacked first.

Watching Americans react online to the jarring report about how close they may have just come to a war which would have impacted most of the world to varying degrees, I’ve been experiencing a deep appreciation for what truly, sincerely good people they are underneath all the propaganda and deceit.

The fact that Americans have had to be tricked into every major military action since the Spanish-American War is telling in itself. If Americans were truly a war-hungry mob, the hawks wouldn’t need to do that. Notice too how these tricks almost always hinge on manipulating Americans’ desire to help others. The manipulators literally have to use people’s goodness to manufacture consent for war by making it all about a “dictator” who is harming his people or some variation of this theme. The hawks could try to play off of hatred or fear, but they know it wouldn’t work nearly as effectively as manipulating the already-installed “Save the day!” helping desire that most Americans live and breathe.

Now, these tricks are becoming more and more conscious for an increasing number of Americans. For instance, on the day of the Gulf of Oman incident, “Gulf of Tonkin” briefly trended on Twitter. As it becomes more apparent that they’ve been lied to, you could expect people to compartmentalize away from the bloodshed by arguing for exceptionalism and for strengthening the petrodollar and US geostrategic interests no matter the cost. They could simply switch gears and take their cues from Bolton and the neocons. But the large majority don’t. They are horrified. There is shame and there is palpable grief. They hate the thought that they might be the baddies, and they want to do what they can to stop the next senseless military bloodbath.

And then something like this near-miss happens in Iran and the responses on social media make it very clear that the will for war with Iran is almost non-existent everywhere except DC. On the contrary, Americans came out in force over the last two days to mock, deride, argue and demand that Trump cease this madness immediately. I’ve been reading all day and just swelling with so much love.

I’ve often had the thought that American culture creates the kind of people we need to save the world, but they’re also subject to the most sophisticated propaganda in the world, so so far they’ve put all that get-up-and-go goodwill into fighting shadows and each other. If the veil of the propaganda gets too thin, these guys might really end up being the superheroes, but for real this time.

And that gives me so much hope. If the US-centralized empire were built upon a foundation of cold, uncaring people, I’d probably pack it in right now and seek out a low-effort job so I can buy chips and booze to take the edge off while I wait for armageddon. But it’s not. All that’s holding our world back from health is a thin, wispy leash made of propaganda.

Whenever I try to talk about this I get a lot of pushback, not from outsiders like myself but from Americans themselves. When you’re in the thick of a society that keeps seeing itself manipulated into war after war after war, it can feel like being in the middle of an endless zombie apocalypse, and it’s easy to grow impatient with one’s countrymen.

But it’s so important that the blame be placed in the right place. We must be vigilant in directing our anger at the manipulators and not the manipulated. It’s always the conman’s fault, never the victim. That’s how it works in fraud law and how it works in life. Blaming people for being “stupid” is not only victim blaming, it’s also unlikely to be true. Being susceptible to propaganda has very little to do with intelligence. You will notice that some of the smartest people you know not only fervently believe the propaganda, they are able to gaslight themselves and others more effectively than most with their own clever arguments. A high IQ does not inoculate you against propaganda, in fact it can work against you because agile minds are able to create the most convincing kinds of reframes.

They’re not stupid, they’re trusting. And is being trusting something we really want to mock? Aside from mocking a beautiful attribute that we should be trying to protect, it also is a bad strategy if you want to help someone into seeing that they’ve been duped. Our brains are very adept at avoiding the feeling of shame, and people will use many strategies to avoid feeling the shame of being duped. So when you mock people as “stupid” you’re literally just strengthening their shame cage by making them defend it. Get angry at their abusers instead and encourage them to get angry at them too. It’s the manipulators who we should be staring down right now, not their victims.

What we are watching with Iran is a war propaganda narrative failing to get airborne. It was all set up and ready to go, they had the whole marketing team working on it, and then it faceplanted right on the linoleum. This is what a failed narrative management campaign looks like. It is possible for us to see this more and more.

Today I have a lot more hope. It’s becoming clear that the manipulations of the US war machine are becoming more and more obvious to more and more people and that everyday, regular Americans are reacting with a healthy amount of horror and revulsion. There was always the risk that the US population would already be sufficiently paced ahead of these revelations and there would be little to no reaction, but that didn’t happen. Americans are seeing what they’re doing, and they don’t like it, and they don’t want it.

And that makes me so happy. Come on Captain America. Save the day. The world is counting on you.

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The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity : Seven Reasons To Be Highly Skeptical Of The Gulf Of Oman Incident

Posted by M. C. on June 14, 2019

http://ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2019/june/14/seven-reasons-to-be-highly-skeptical-of-the-gulf-of-oman-incident/

Written by Caitlin Johnstone

In a move that surprised exactly zero people, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has wasted no time scrambling to blame Iran for damage done to two sea vessels in the Gulf of Oman on Thursday, citing exactly zero evidence.

“This assessment is based on intelligence, the weapons used, the level of expertise needed to execute the operation, recent similar Iranian attacks on shipping, and the fact that no proxy group operating in the area has the resources and proficiency to act with such a high-degree of sophistication,” Pompeo told the press in a statement.

“The United States will defend its forces, interests, and stand with our partners and allies to safeguard global commerce and regional stability. And we call upon all nations threatened by Iran’s provocative acts to join us in that endeavor,” Pompeo concluded before hastily shambling off, taking exactly zero questions.

Here are seven reasons to be extremely skeptical of everything Pompeo said:

1. Pompeo is a known liar, especially when it comes to Iran.

Pompeo has a well-established history of circulating blatant lies about Iran and the behavior of the Iranian government, and he recently told an audienceat Texas A&M University that when he was leading the CIA, “We lied, we cheated, we stole. We had entire training courses.”

2. The US empire is known to use lies and false flags to start wars.

The US-centralized power alliance has an extensive and well-documented history of advancing preexisting military agendas using lies, false flags and psyops to make targeted governments appear to be the aggressors. This is such a well-established pattern that “Gulf of Tonkin” briefly trended on Twitter after the Gulf of Oman incident. Any number of government agencies could have been involved from any number of the nations in this alliance, including the US, the UK, the KSA, the UAE, or Israel.

3. John Bolton has openly endorsed lying to advance military agendas.

I wrote an article about this last month because the Trump administration had already begun rapidly escalating against Iran in ways that happen to align perfectly with the longtime agendas of Trump’s psychopathic Iran hawk National Security Advisor. At that time people were so aware of the possibility that Bolton might involve himself in staging yet another Middle Eastern war based on lies that The Onion was already spoofing it.

On a December 2010 episode of Fox News’ Freedom Watch, Bolton and the show’s host Andrew Napolitano were debating about recent WikiLeaks publications, and naturally the subject of government secrecy came up.

“Now I want to make the case for secrecy in government when it comes to the conduct of national security affairs, and possibly for deception where that’s appropriate,” Bolton said. “You know Winston Churchill said during World War Two that in wartime truth is so important it should be surrounded by a bodyguard of lies.”

“Do you really believe that?” asked an incredulous Napolitano.

“Absolutely,” Bolton replied.

“You would lie in order to preserve the truth?”

“If I had to say something I knew was false to protect American national security, I would do it,” Bolton answered.

This would be the same John Bolton who has been paid exorbitant speaking fees by the pro-regime change MEK terror cult, promising the cult in a 2017 speech that they’d be celebrating regime change in Tehran together before 2019. This would also be the same John Bolton who once threatened to murder an OPCW official’s children if he didn’t stop getting in the way of his Iraq war agenda.

4. Using false flags to start a war with Iran is already an established idea in the DC swamp.

Back in 2012 at a forum for the Washington Institute Of Near East Policy think tank, the group’s Director of Research Patrick Clawson openly talked about the possibility of using a false flag to provoke a war with Iran, citing the various ways the US has done exactly that with its previous wars.

“I frankly think that crisis initiation is really tough, and it’s very hard for me to see how the United States president can get us to war with Iran,” Clawson began.

“Which leads me to conclude that if in fact compromise is not coming, that the traditional way that America gets to war is what would be best for US interests,” Clawson added. “Some people might think that Mr. Roosevelt wanted to get us into the war… you may recall we had to wait for Pearl Harbor. Some people might think that Mr. Wilson wanted to get us into World War One; you may recall we had to wait for the Lusitania episode. Some people might think that Mr. Johnson wanted to get us into Vietnam; you may recall we had to wait for the Gulf of Tonkin episode. We didn’t go to war with Spain until the USS Maine exploded. And may I point out that Mr. Lincoln did not feel that he could call out the Army until Fort Sumter was attacked, which is why he ordered the commander at Fort Sumter to do exactly that thing which the South Carolinians said would cause an attack.”

“So if, in fact, the Iranians aren’t going to compromise, it would be best if somebody else started the war,” Clawson continued. “One can combine other means of pressure with sanctions. I mentioned that explosion on August 17th. We could step up the pressure. I mean look people, Iranian submarines periodically go down. Some day, one of them might not come up. Who would know why? We can do a variety of things, if we wish to increase the pressure (I’m not advocating that) but I’m just suggesting that this is not an either/or proposition — just sanctions have to succeed or other things. We are in the game of using covert means against the Iranians. We could get nastier at that.”

5. The US State Department has already been running psyops to manipulate the public Iran narrative. Read the rest of this entry »

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Fake News does more for real journalism than “real journalism” | The Daily Bell

Posted by M. C. on June 14, 2019

https://www.thedailybell.com/all-articles/news-analysis/fake-news-does-more-for-real-journalism-than-real-journalism/

By Joe Jarvis

All these newspapers used to have foreign bureaus. Now they don’t. They call us to explain to them what’s happening in Moscow and Cairo.

Most of the outlets are reporting on world events from Washington. The average reporter we talk to is 27 years old, and their only reporting experience consists of being around political campaigns.

That’s a sea change. They literally know nothing.

-Ben Rhodes, Deputy National Security Adviser for Strategic Communications under Obama

“Real journalism” is propaganda from Washington DC.

The news simply quotes the politicians, believes the names of bills will become reality, and buys hook, line, and sinker what the spy-masters in the Pentagon tell them.

And here we are again, being sold a justification for yet another war in the middle east.

The US government claims that Iran attacked a Japanese shipping vessel with mines. Iran claims this is a lie.

I’m not going to pretend I know the truth, even though my initial reaction is always suspicion. Much like the reports that Assad attacked his people with chemical weapons in Syria, it is hard to see what Iran would gain from attacking the vessel.

The events just seem too perfect, justifying what America already wanted: to go to war.

It doesn’t even have to be an American-orchestrated false flag. It could simply be a misrepresentation, like the Gulf of Tonkin incidents which escalated the Vietnam War.

The US said that North Vietnam attacked its ship, but the truth was that the American ship fired the first “warning shots.” In the end, the American ship sustained one bullet hole and no casualties, while four North Vietnamese soldiers were killed.

But most Americans would never even hear about the Gulf of Tonkin if it wasn’t for fake news sites like Babylon Bee.

The headline reads: John Bolton: ‘When Has The Government Ever Lied About Attacks On Ships In A Gulf Somewhere Just To Provoke War?’

Then it offers a fake quote from Trump’s National Security Advisor John Bolton: Read the rest of this entry »

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The War Crimes That Don’t Get Punished – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on June 11, 2019

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2019/06/ron-paul/the-war-crimes-that-dont-get-punished/

By

Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA) found himself in hot water recently over comments he made in defense of Navy SEAL Edward Gallagher, who faces war crimes charges over his alleged conduct while serving in combat overseas. Gallagher is charged with stabbing a 15 year old ISIS member while in custody, of taking photos posing with the corpse of the teen, and with killing several civilians.

Defending Gallagher recently, Hunter put his own record up next to the SEAL to suggest that he’s an elected Congressman who has done worse things in battle than Gallagher.

That’s where Hunter’s defense earned him some perhaps unwanted attention. While participating in the first “Battle of Fallujah” in early 2007, by Hunter’s own account he and his fellow soldiers killed hundreds of innocent civilians, including women and children. They fired mortars into the city and killed at random.

In the sanitized world of US mainstream media reporting on US wars overseas, we do not hear about non-combatants being killed by Americans. How many times has there been any reporting on the birth defects that Iraqis continue to suffer in the aftermath of US attacks with horrific weapons like depleted uranium and white phosphorus?

Rep. Hunter described his philosophy when fighting in Iraq:

“You go in fast and hard, you kill people, you hit them in the face and then you get out…We’re going to hurt you and then we’re going to leave. And if you want to be nice to America, we’ll be nice to you. If you don’t want to be nice to us, we’re going to slap you again.”

This shows how much Duncan Hunter does not understand about war. When he speaks of hitting people in the face until they are nice to America, he doesn’t seem to realize that the people of Fallujah – and all of Iraq – never did a thing to the US to deserve that hit in the face. The war was launched on the basis of lies and cooked-up intelligence by many of the people who are serving in the current Administration.

And that brings us to the real war criminals. Read the rest of this entry »

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This is why America is persecuting Julian Assange, by Patrick Cockburn – The Unz Review

Posted by M. C. on June 3, 2019

Yemeni experts on the conflict say that Houthi arms acquisition today has likewise little to do with Iran. Yemen has always had a flourishing arms black market in which weapons, large and small, can be obtained in almost any quantity if the money is right. Anti-Houthi forces, copiously supplied by Saudi Arabia and UAE, are happy to profit by selling on weapons to the Houthis or anybody else.

http://www.unz.com/pcockburn/this-is-why-america-is-persecuting-julian-assange/

However, it was the friendly US official and I who were being naive, forgetting that the real purpose of state secrecy is to enable governments to establish their own self-interested and often mendacious version of the truth by the careful selection of “facts” to be passed on to the public. They feel enraged by any revelation of what they really know, or by any alternative source of information. Such threats to their control of the news agenda must be suppressed where possible and, where not, those responsible must be pursued and punished.

We have had two good examples of the lengths to which a government – in this case that of the US – will go to protect its own tainted version of events. The first is the charging of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange under the Espionage Act for leaking 750,000 confidential military and diplomatic documents in 2010.

The second example has happened in the last few days. The international media may not have always covered itself in glory in the war in Yemen, but there are brave journalists and news organisations who have done just that. One of them is Yemeni reporter Maad al-Zikry who, along with Maggie Michael and Nariman El-Mofty, is part of an Associated Press (AP) team that won the international reporting Pulitzer prize this year for superb on the ground coverage of the war in Yemen. Their stories included revelations about the US drone strikes in Yemen and about the prisons maintained there by the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The US government clearly did not like this type of critical journalism. When the Pulitzer was awarded last Tuesday in New York Zikry was not there because he had been denied a visa to enter the US. There is no longer a US embassy in the Yemeni capital Sanaa, but two months ago he made his way to the US embassy in Cairo where his visa application, though fully supported by AP and many other prestigious institutions, was rejected.

After AP had exerted further pressure, Zikry made a second application for a visa and this time he was seen by a Counsellor at the embassy. He reports himself as asking: “Does the US embassy think that a Yemeni investigative journalist doing reporting for AP is a terrorist? Are you saying I am a terrorist?”

The Counsellor said that they would “work” on his visa or, in other words, ask the powers-that-be in Washington what to do. “So, I waited and waited – and waited,” he says. “And, until now I heard nothing from them.”

Of course, Washington is fully capable of waiving any prohibition on the granting of a visa to a Yemeni in a case like this, but it chose not to.

Can what Assange and Wikileaks did in 2010 be compared with what Zikry and AP did in 2019? Some commentators, to their shame, claim that the pursuit of Assange, and his current imprisonment pending possible extradition to the US or Sweden, has nothing to with freedom of expression.

In fact, he was doing what every journalist ought to do and doing it very successfully...

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says that Iran has provided the Houthis “with the missile system, the hardware, the military capability” that they have acquired.

National Security Adviser John Bolton said on Wednesday that Iran risked a “very strong response” from the US for, among other things, drone attacks by the Houthis on Saudi Arabia for which he holds the Iranians responsible.

These accusations by the US, Saudi Arabia and whoever is their Yemeni ally of the day that the Houthis are stooges of Iran armed with Iranian-supplied weapons has a long history. But what do we know about what Washington really thinks of these allegations which have not changed much over the years?

This where Wikileaks comes to the rescue. Read the rest of this entry »

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Tomgram: Danny Sjursen, With Friends Like These… | TomDispatch

Posted by M. C. on May 31, 2019

http://www.tomdispatch.com/post/176569/tomgram%3A_danny_sjursen%2C_with_friends_like_these…/#more

By Danny Sjursen

Troika Fever

American foreign policy can be so retro, not to mention absurd. Despite being bogged down in more military interventions than it can reasonably handle, the Trump team recently picked a new fight — in Latin America. That’s right! Uncle Sam kicked off a sequel to the Cold War with some of our southern neighbors, while resuscitating the boogeyman of socialism. In the process, National Security Advisor John Bolton treated us all to a new phrase, no less laughable than Bush the younger’s 2002 “axis of evil” (Iran, Iraq, and North Korea). He labeled Venezuela, Cuba, and Nicaragua a “troika of tyranny.”

Alliteration no less! The only problem is that the phrase ridiculously overestimates both the degree of collaboration among those three states and the dangers they pose to their hegemonic neighbor to the north. Bottom line: in no imaginable fashion do those little tin-pot tyrannies offer either an existential or even a serious threat to the United States. Evidently, however, the phrase was meant to conjure up enough ill will and fear to justify the Trump team’s desire for sweeping regime change in Latin America. Think of it as a micro-version of Cold War 2.0…

strap yourself in for a bumpy ride. After all, the demonization of Latin American “socialists” and an ill-advised war in the Persian Gulf have already been part of our lived experience. Under the circumstances, remember your Karl Marx: history repeats itself, first as tragedy, then as farce.

And add this irony to the grim farce to come: you need only look to the Middle East to see a genuine all-American troika of tyranny. I’m thinking about the kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the military junta in Egypt, and the colonizing state of Israel — all countries that eschew real democracy and are working together to rain chaos on an already unstable region.

If you weren’t an American, this might already be clear to you. With that in mind, let’s try on a pair of non-American shoes and take a brief tour of a real troika of tyranny on this planet, a threesome that just happen to be President Trump’s best buddies in the Middle East.

America’s Favorite Kingdom Read the rest of this entry »

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Bolton: Iran ‘Almost Certainly’ Behind Gulf Oil Tanker Attacks

Posted by M. C. on May 29, 2019

almost certainly from Iran

Translation: Either Bolton doesn’t have a clue or it was his useful idiots.

Why do non-existent mobile germ labs, non-existent uranium stockpiles and non-existent poison gas come to mind.

Who else would you think would be doing it? Someone from Nepal? No, the pentagram.

Can Bolton say “False Flag” any louder?

The Trump administration has ordered non-essential diplomatic staff out of Iraq, citing threats

17+ years and countless US dead and maimed yet Baghdad isn’t safe.

Just when you think it can’t get any worse…John Bolton!

https://www.breitbart.com/middle-east/2019/05/29/bolton-iran-almost-certainly-behind-gulf-oil-tanker-attacks/

by SIMON KENT

U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton accused Iran Wednesday of “almost certainly” being behind attacks on four oil tankers moored off the coast of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) earlier this month.

Mr. Bolton is visiting Abu Dhabi amid the backdrop of soaring tensions between Washington and Tehran which the U.S. accuses of threatening American interests and allies in the region, including Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

His assertion came on the eve of emergency Arab and Gulf summits called by Iran’s regional arch-rival Saudi Arabia to discuss the standoff.

The four ships, including two Saudi tankers, were attacked by “naval mines almost certainly from Iran”, Mr. Bolton told journalists at the U.S. embassy briefing regarding the May 12 attacks.

“It’s clear that Iran is behind the Fujairah attack. Who else would you think would be doing it? Someone from Nepal?

“There is no doubt in anybody’s minds in Washington, we know who did this and it’s important Iran knows we know,” he added…

The Trump administration has ordered non-essential diplomatic staff out of Iraq, citing threats from Iranian-backed Iraqi armed groups, and moved an aircraft carrier and heavy B-52 bombers to the region…

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