Behind The Scenes Look At Newsbud’s War Against The Mainstream Propaganda Machine

In this rare behind the scenes episode Spiro Skouras is joined by Broc West to share with our viewers what goes into Newsbud video productions and how we use them to counter the mainstream media propaganda.

***Join our effort and support this one of a kind people funded media with integrity- Because, together, we can!

Montenegro Ready to Join NATO: Visiting NATO Official

BELGRADE, Nov. 3 (Xinhua) -- Montenegro is ready to take responsibilities within the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), visiting NATO deputy secretary general Rose Gottemoeller said in Montenegro on Thursday.
According to the press release of the government, after meeting with Montenegro's Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic, prior to the closing ceremony of the four-day 16th international field exercise "Montenegro 2016," Gottemoeller said that the quality of the organization convinced her that "Montenegro proved full readiness and capacity to take responsibility for the realization of complex activities within the NATO alliance."

Appeals Court Affirms NSA Surveillance Can Be Used To Investigate Domestic Criminal Suspects

The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals confirms what's already known about the NSA's domestic surveillance: it's not just for terrorism.
The NSA collections -- done in the FBI's name -- are supposed to only gather info related to international terrorism. But that requirement has been phased out. The NSA "tips" a certain amount of data to the FBI for its own use and it has been shown in the past to do the same for the DEA, which it then instructs to obscure the origin of its info.
An opinion [PDF] just released by the Appeals Court, says basically the same thing: although the NSA's surveillance is supposed to be used to sniff out terrorists, there's nothing in the law that prevents it from using its collections to go after criminals.

MSM Syria Lies NEED TO BE EXPOSED…Before It’s Too Late

The world once again finds itself hurtling to the brink of war, and once again the establishment mouthpiece puppet propaganda media is leading the charge. This time around their lies defy description. In the sick world of the would-be warmongers, child beheading terrorist scum are now the heroes. The blood of the innocents that spill from here on in covers the hands of the mainstream media propagandists.

*For the show notes visit Corbett Report here

Corbett Report Presents: “5 Mind-Blowing Spying Technologies”

Scientists and engineers can spend years of their lives in painstaking trial-and-error experimentation to develop a breakthrough new technology…and the military-industrial complex can find a way to militarize it in mere hours. Sadly the military aren’t the only ones interested in the latest gadgets and inventions, though. The alphabet soup agencies are equally voracious for innovative new ways to spy on the public. Today let’s examine five of the most amazing technological breakthroughs…that are about to be turned into nightmarish spying tech.

*Read the article here

Corbett Report- The REAL Cost of the War of Terror

We all know by now that the real terrorists (the politicians in the suits and ties and the banksters that pull their strings) are waging their war of terror on multiple fronts for multiple reasons. Domestically, it rallies the population around the flag, keeping the flock in check. At the same time it justifies the build up of the police state control grid to catch the thought criminals who resist. It also writes a blank check for the illegal wars of aggression abroad. Simply place your terrorist boogeyman in the square of the chessboard you're looking to occupy and -- hey presto! -- you've got yourself an excuse to invade. (Even if you "accidentally" end up supporting them, right Uncle Sam?).

But of course the politicians, their string pullers and their fellow travelers benefit from the war of terror in a more straightforward sense. They get to use the terror scares that they themselves create to drum up billions upon billions in the name of fighting the boogeymen.

*For show notes and transcript click here

Corbett Report- 9/11 Suspects: General Ralph Eberhart

The official story of 9/11 is a lie. But Eberhart's story is a lie within that lie, designed to absolve himself and other members of the US military charged with defending American airspace that morning from the most catastrophic failure in that mission in their history. And not only did Eberhart survive with his career intact, he was praised as a "9/11 hero" and moved into the private sector after leaving NORAD in 2004, as chairman and board member of a number of companies that directly benefited from the post-9/11 police state and the post-9/11 war on terror.

*For show notes & MP3 visit Corbett Report here

Corbett Report- 9/11 Suspects: Robert Baer

Given the exceptionally grave nature of this admission and its repercussions, one would suppose that Baer has been questioned by other media and/or the FBI and made to discuss in detail precisely who it was who cashed out and how he knew about the 9/11 plot in advance. But one would be wrong. Since making this stunning admission to the cameras of We Are Change Los Angeles, no one has ever asked Baer for more information about the case. So why is Robert Baer hiding the identity of a 9/11 accomplice or co-conspirator? And will the FBI be asking him for details of this story any time soon? Until the American public show some interest in this shocking admission, it is unlikely that anything will happen.

*For show notes & MP3 visit Corbett Report here

The Tyranny of 9/11: The Building Blocks of the American Police State from A-Z

The U.S. government now poses a greater threat to our freedoms than any terrorist, extremist or foreign entity ever could!

“No one man can terrorize a whole nation unless we are all his accomplices.” ― Edward R. Murrow

We’ve walked a strange and harrowing road since September 11, 2001, littered with the debris of our once-vaunted liberties.

We have gone from a nation that took great pride in being a model of a representative democracy to being a model of how to persuade the citizenry to march in lockstep with a police state. In doing so, we have proven Osama Bin Laden right. He warned that “freedom and human rights in America are doomed. The U.S. government will lead the American people in — and the West in general — into an unbearable hell and a choking life.”

These past 15 years have indeed been an unbearable, choking hell.

What began with the passage of the USA Patriot Act in October 2001 has snowballed into the eradication of every vital safeguard against government overreach, corruption and abuse.

The citizenry’s unquestioning acquiescence to anything the government wants to do in exchange for the phantom promise of safety and security has resulted in a society where the nation is being locked down into a militarized, mechanized, hypersensitive, legalistic, self-righteous, goose-stepping antithesis of every principle upon which this nation was founded.

This is not freedom. This is a jail cell.

Set against a backdrop of government surveillance, militarized police, SWAT team raids, asset forfeiture, eminent domain, overcriminalization, armed surveillance drones, whole body scanners, stop and frisk searches, roving VIPR raids and the like—all of which have been sanctioned by Congress, the White House and the courts—our constitutional freedoms have been steadily chipped away at, undermined, eroded, whittled down, and generally discarded.

Our losses are mounting with every passing day.

Free speech, the right to protest, the right to challenge government wrongdoing, due process, a presumption of innocence, the right to self-defense, accountability and transparency in government, privacy, press, sovereignty, assembly, bodily integrity, representative government: all of these and more have become casualties in the government’s war on the American people, a war that has grown more pronounced since 9/11.

Since the towers fell on 9/11, the American people have been treated like enemy combatants, to be spied on, tracked, scanned, frisked, searched, subjected to all manner of intrusions, intimidated, invaded, raided, manhandled, censored, silenced, shot at, locked up, and denied due process.

In allowing ourselves to be distracted by terror drills, foreign wars, color-coded warnings, underwear bombers and other carefully constructed exercises in propaganda, sleight of hand, and obfuscation, we failed to recognize that the true enemy to freedom was lurking among us all the while.

The U.S. government now poses a greater threat to our freedoms than any terrorist, extremist or foreign entity ever could.

While nearly 3,000 people died in the 9/11 attacks, the U.S. government and its agents have easily killed at least ten times that number of civilians in the U.S. and abroad since 9/11 through its police shootings, SWAT team raids, drone strikes and profit-driven efforts to police the globe, sell weapons to foreign nations, and foment civil unrest in order to keep the military industrial complex gainfully employed. (Syria’s bloody civil war in which CIA-armed militias have been fighting FBI-armed militias is a prime example of the government’s Machiavellian schemes gone awry.)

No, the U.S. government is not the citizenry’s friend, nor is it our protector, and life in the United States of America post-9/11 is no picnic.

Here’s an A-to-Z primer to spell out exactly what government tyranny means post 9/11.

A is for the AMERICAN POLICE STATE. A police state “is characterized by bureaucracy, secrecy, perpetual wars, a nation of suspects, militarization, surveillance, widespread police presence, and a citizenry with little recourse against police actions.”

B is for our battered BILL OF RIGHTS. In the cop culture that is America today, where you can be kicked, punched, tasered, shot, intimidated, harassed, stripped, searched, brutalized, terrorized, wrongfully arrested, and even killed by a police officer, and that officer is rarely held accountable for violating your rights, the Bill of Rights doesn’t amount to much.

C is for CIVIL ASSET FORFEITURE. The latest governmental scheme to deprive Americans of their liberties—namely, the right to property—is being carried out under the guise of civil asset forfeiture, a government practice whereingovernment agents (usually the police) seize private property they “suspect” may be connected to criminal activity. Then, whether or not any crime is actually proven to have taken place, the government keeps the citizen’s property.

D is for DRONES. It is estimated that at least 30,000 drones will be airborne in American airspace by 2020, part of an$80 billion industry. Although some drones will be used for benevolent purposes, many will also be equipped with lasers, tasers and scanning devices, among other weapons—all aimed at “we the people.”

E is for ELECTRONIC CONCENTRATION CAMP. In the electronic concentration camp, as I have dubbed the surveillance state, all aspects of a person’s life are policed by government agents and all citizens are suspects, their activities monitored and regulated, their movements tracked, their communications spied upon, and their lives, liberties and pursuit of happiness dependent on the government’s say-so.

F is for FUSION CENTERS. Fusion centers, data collecting agencies spread throughout the country and aided by the National Security Agency, serve as a clearinghouse for information shared between state, local and federal agencies. These fusion centers constantly monitor our communications, everything from our internet activity and web searches to text messages, phone calls and emails. This data is then fed to government agencies, which are now interconnected: the CIA to the FBI, the FBI to local police.

G is for GRENADE LAUNCHERS and GLOBAL POLICE. The federal government has distributed more than $18 billion worth of battlefield-appropriate military weapons, vehicles and equipment such as drones, tanks, and grenade launchers to domestic police departments across the country. As a result, most small-town police forces now have enough firepower to render any citizen resistance futile. Now take those small-town police forces, train them to look and act like the military, and then enlist them to be part of the United Nations’ Strong Cities Network program, and you not only have a standing army that operates beyond the reach of the Constitution but one that is part of a global police force.

H is for HOLLOW-POINT BULLETS. The government’s efforts to militarize and weaponize its agencies and employees is reaching epic proportions, with federal agencies as varied as the Department of Homeland Security and the Social Security Administration stockpiling millions of lethal hollow-point bullets, which violate international law. Ironically, while the government continues to push for stricter gun laws for the general populace, the U.S. military’s arsenal of weapons makes the average American’s handgun look like a Tinker Toy.

I is for the INTERNET OF THINGS, in which internet-connected “things” will monitor your home, your health and your habits in order to keep your pantry stocked, your utilities regulated and your life under control and relatively worry-free. The key word here, however, is control. This “connected” industry propels us closer to a future where police agencies apprehend virtually anyone if the government “thinks” they may commit a crime, driverless cars populate the highways, and a person’s biometrics are constantly scanned and used to track their movements, target them for advertising, and keep them under perpetual surveillance.

J is for JAILING FOR PROFIT. Having outsourced their inmate population to private prisons run by private corporations, this profit-driven form of mass punishment has given rise to a $70 billion private prison industry that relies on the complicity of state governments to keep their privately run prisons full by jailing large numbers of Americans for inane crimes.

K is for KENTUCKY V. KING. In an 8-1 ruling, the Supreme Court ruled that police officers can break into homes, without a warrant, even if it’s the wrong home as long as they think they have a reason to do so. Despite the fact that the police in question ended up pursuing the wrong suspect, invaded the wrong apartment and violated just about every tenet that stands between us and a police state, the Court sanctioned the warrantless raid, leaving Americans with little real protection in the face of all manner of abuses by law enforcement officials.

L is for LICENSE PLATE READERS, which enable law enforcement and private agencies to track the whereabouts of vehicles, and their occupants, all across the country. This data collected on tens of thousands of innocent people is also being shared between police agencies, as well as with fusion centers and private companies. This puts Big Brother in the driver’s seat.

M is for MAIN CORE. Since the 1980s, the U.S. government has acquired and maintained, without warrant or court order, a database of names and information on Americans considered to be threats to the nation. As Salon reports, this database, reportedly dubbed “Main Core,” is to be used by the Army and FEMA in times of national emergency or under martial law to locate and round up Americans seen as threats to national security. As of 2008, there were some 8 million Americans in the Main Core database.

N is for NO-KNOCK RAIDS. Owing to the militarization of the nation’s police forces, SWAT teams are now increasingly being deployed for routine police matters. In fact, more than 80,000 of these paramilitary raids are carried out every year. That translates to more than 200 SWAT team raids every day in which police crash through doors, damage private property, terrorize adults and children alike, kill family pets, assault or shoot anyone that is perceived as threatening—and all in the pursuit of someone merely suspected of a crime, usually possession of some small amount of drugs.

O is for OVERCRIMINALIZATION. Thanks to an overabundance of 4500-plus federal crimes and 400,000 plus rules and regulations, it’s estimated that the average American actually commits three felonies a day without knowing it. As a result of this overcriminalization, we’re seeing an uptick in Americans being arrested and jailed for such absurd “violations” as letting their kids play at a park unsupervised, collecting rainwater and snow runoff on their own property, growing vegetables in their yard, and holding Bible studies in their living room.

P is for PATHOCRACY and PRECRIME. When our own government treats us as things to be manipulated, maneuvered, mined for data, manhandled by police, mistreated, and then jailed in profit-driven private prisons if we dare step out of line, we are no longer operating under a constitutional republic. Instead, what we are experiencing is apathocracy: tyranny at the hands of a psychopathic government, which “operates against the interests of its own people except for favoring certain groups.” Couple that with the government’s burgeoning precrime programs, which will usefusion centers, data collection agencies, behavioral scientists, corporations, social media, and community organizers and by relying on cutting-edge technology for surveillance, facial recognition, predictive policing, biometrics, and behavioral epigenetics in order to identify and deter so-called potential “extremists,” dissidents or rabble-rousers. Bear in mind that anyone seen as opposing the government—whether they’re Left, Right or somewhere in between—is now viewed as an extremist.

Q is for QUALIFIED IMMUNITY. Qualified immunity allows officers to walk away without paying a dime for their wrongdoing. Conveniently, those deciding whether a police officer should be immune from having to personally pay for misbehavior on the job all belong to the same system, all cronies with a vested interest in protecting the police and their infamous code of silence: city and county attorneys, police commissioners, city councils and judges.

R is for ROADSIDE STRIP SEARCHES and BLOOD DRAWS. The courts have increasingly erred on the side of giving government officials—especially the police—vast discretion in carrying out strip searches, blood draws and even anal probes for a broad range of violations, no matter how minor the offense. In the past, strip searches were resorted to only in exceptional circumstances where police were confident that a serious crime was in progress. In recent years, however, strip searches have become routine operating procedures in which everyone is rendered a suspect and, as such, is subjected to treatment once reserved for only the most serious of criminals.

S is for the SURVEILLANCE STATE. On any given day, the average American going about his daily business will be monitored, surveilled, spied on and tracked in more than 20 different ways, by both government and corporate eyes and ears. A byproduct of this new age in which we live, whether you’re walking through a store, driving your car, checking email, or talking to friends and family on the phone, you can be sure that some government agency, whether the NSA or some other entity, is listening in and tracking your behavior. This doesn’t even begin to touch on the corporate trackers that monitor your purchases, web browsing, Facebook posts and other activities taking place in the cyber sphere.

T is for TASERS. Nonlethal weapons such as tasers, stun guns, rubber pellets and the like have been used by police as weapons of compliance more often and with less restraint—even against women and children—and in some instances, even causing death. These “nonlethal” weapons also enable police to aggress with the push of a button, making the potential for overblown confrontations over minor incidents that much more likely. A Taser Shockwave, for instance, can electrocute a crowd of people at the touch of a button.

U is for UNARMED CITIZENS SHOT BY POLICE. No longer is it unusual to hear about incidents in which police shoot unarmed individuals first and ask questions later, often attributed to a fear for their safety. Yet the fatality rate of on-duty patrol officers is reportedly far lower than many other professions, including construction, logging, fishing, truck driving, and even trash collection.

V is for VIPR SQUADS. So-called “soft target” security inspections, carried out by roving VIPR task forces, comprised of federal air marshals, surface transportation security inspectors, transportation security officers, behavior detection officers and explosive detection canine teams, are taking place whenever and wherever the government deems appropriate, at random times and places, and without needing the justification of a particular threat.

W is for WHOLE-BODY SCANNERS. Using either x-ray radiation or radio waves, scanning devices and government mobile units are being used not only to “see” through your clothes but to spy on you within the privacy of your home. While these mobile scanners are being sold to the American public as necessary security and safety measures, we can ill afford to forget that such systems are rife with the potential for abuse, not only by government bureaucrats but by the technicians employed to operate them.

X is for X-KEYSCORE, one of the many spying programs carried out by the National Security Agency that targets every person in the United States who uses a computer or phone. This top-secret program “allows analysts to search with no prior authorization through vast databases containing emails, online chats and the browsing histories of millions of individuals.”

Y is for YOU-NESS. Using your face, mannerisms, social media and “you-ness” against you, you can now be tracked based on what you buy, where you go, what you do in public, and how you do what you do. Facial recognition software promises to create a society in which every individual who steps out into public is tracked and recorded as they go about their daily business. The goal is for government agents to be able to scan a crowd of people and instantaneously identify all of the individuals present. Facial recognition programs are being rolled out in states all across the country.

Z is for ZERO TOLERANCE. We have moved into a new paradigm in which young people are increasingly viewed as suspects and treated as criminals by school officials and law enforcement alike, often for engaging in little more than childish behavior. In some jurisdictions, students have also been penalized under school zero tolerance policies for such inane "crimes" as carrying cough drops, wearing black lipstick, bringing nail clippers to school, using Listerine or Scope, and carrying fold-out combs that resemble switchblades. The lesson being taught to our youngest—and most impressionable—citizens is this: in the American police state, you’re either a prisoner (shackled, controlled, monitored, ordered about, limited in what you can do and say, your life not your own) or a prison bureaucrat (politician, police officer, judge, jailer, spy, profiteer, etc.).

As I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, the reality we must come to terms with is that in the post-9/11 America we live in today, the government does whatever it wants, freedom be damned.

The choices before us are straight-forward.

We can live in the past, dwell on what freedoms we used to enjoy and shrug helplessly at the destruction of our liberties.

We can immerse ourselves in the present, allowing ourselves to be utterly distracted by the glut of entertainment news and ever-changing headlines so that we fail to pay attention to or do anything about the government’s ongoing power-grabs.

We can hang our hopes on the future, believing against all odds that someone or something—whether it be a politician, a movement, or a religious savior—will save us from inevitable ruin.

Or we can start right away by instituting changes at the local level, holding our government officials accountable to the rule of law, and resurrecting the Constitution, recognizing that if we fail to do so and instead follow our current trajectory, the picture of the future will be closer to what George Orwell likened to “a boot stamping on a human face—forever.”

# # # #

John W. Whitehead is an attorney and author who has written, debated and practiced widely in the area of constitutional law and human rights. He is the president and spokesperson of the Rutherford Institute. Mr. Whitehead is the author of numerous books on a variety of legal and social issues, including A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Arkansas and a Juris Doctorate degree from the University of Arkansas School of Law, and served as an officer in the United States Army from 1969 to 1971.

Corbett Report- 9/11 Suspects: Rudy Giuliani

Mayor Giuliani oversaw the illegal destruction of the 9/11 crime scene and is criminally liable for the deaths of hundreds of emergency workers for not passing on prior warnings about the collapses of the Twin Towers. It is no wonder, then, that the Fire Department of New York so passionately detest Giuliani for his actions in disgracing their fallen brothers and covering up the 9/11 crime.

*For show notes & MP3 visit Corbett Report here

The New Great Game Round-Up: March 23, 2014

New Poster Boy for North Caucasus Insurgency, Central Asia Struggles with IMU, NED's "Democratic Reforms" In Tajikistan & More!

The Great Game Round-Up brings you the latest newsworthy developments regarding Central Asia and the Caucasus region. We document the struggle for influence, power, hegemony and profits between a U.S.-dominated NATO, its GCC proxies, Russia, China and other regional players.  

Numerous reports about the death of Russia's most wanted terrorist, Doku Umarov, have surfaced over the years only to be refuted by another video supposedly shot in the forests of the North Caucasus. Like the phony bin Laden tapes these videos are then subsequently propagated by CIA's Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, U.S.-Israeli "terrorism expert" organizations, which manage to beat al-Qaeda & Co. to the release of their own videos, and the mouthpiece of the Caucasus Emirate, the Kavkaz Center. The servers hosting the Kavkaz Center website are of course not to be found in the forests of the North Caucasus but rather in Sweden and Finland, where people like Mikael Storsjö do their bit to enable the Islamist insurgency in Russia. Since the Kavkaz Center has now finally confirmed Doku Umarov's death, this foreign-backed insurgency needs a new poster boy:

North Caucasus rebel leader Umarov dead, replaced: website

Russia's most wanted man, Doku Umarov, is dead and has been replaced as the leader of an Islamist insurgency in the North Caucasus, a website that sympathizes with the militants said on Tuesday.

The Kavkaz Centre website issued an obituary, calling Umarov a martyr who had "given 20 years of his life to the Jihad."

It did not say when or how he had died, but the simultaneous release of a video address by a militant introducing himself as Umarov's replacement indicated it may have been some time ago.

 
New Poster Boy for North Caucasus Insurgency
Ramzan Kadyrov, the head of the Chechen Republic, saw this as a confirmation of his proclamation of Umarov's death a few weeks earlier and argued that his nemesis had been killed in a special operation without offering any proof. Israeli scholar Avrom Shmulevich on the other hand claimed a month ago that the Chechen terrorist leader had been poisoned last fall. But while the details of Umarov's end remain unclear, life goes on for terrorists in Russia and RFE/RL is already promoting the new poster boy of Washington's "freedom fighters" in the North Caucasus:

Avar Theologian Named To Succeed Umarov As Insurgency Leader

Aliasaskhab Kebekov (aka Ali Abu-Mukhammad), the "qadi" (supreme religious authority) of the Caucasus Emirate proclaimed in 2007 by then-Chechen Republic Ichkeria President Doku Umarov, says he has been chosen to succeed Umarov as Caucasus Emirate leader. In a 12-minute video clip posted on March 18, Kebekov confirms the earlier reports of Umarov's death. He further explains that a six-man "shura" (council) appointed by Umarov has selected him as Umarov's successor.

Umarov represented an older generation of terrorists who were primarily concerend with the fight for Chechen independence. His successor Kebekov was born in Dagestan and is thus the first non-Chechen to head the Islamist insurgency in the North Caucasus. With terrorist activities in Chechnya declining and neighboring Dagestan becoming Russia's new terror hotspot, Kebekov's appointment makes sense. Yekaterina Sokirianskaya, North Caucasus director of the infamous International Crisis Group, used this opportunity to explain the way forward:

"Overall, Dagestan rebels have always been tougher than Chechen rebels," Sokirianskaya said. "It will be a more battle ready, more ruthless cell, even more integrate into the global jihad."

So the Russians have to expect more horrific terrorist attacks similar to the December 2013 Volgograd bombings, which were carried out by the "Vilayet of Dagestan", the Dagestani branch of the Caucasus Emirate, where Kebekov started his jihadi career as "qadi" of the "Mountain Sector". But the new leader of the Caucasus Emirate and his minions are of course dependent on outside assistance and so the Russian authorities try to stem the flow of weapons to the North Caucasus: 

Russia Uncovers Arms Smuggling Route Through Ukraine

Agents at a Ukrainian-Russian land border crossing detained several of the smugglers, who had in their possession pistols made by Desert Eagle, Smith & Wesson, SIG Sauer and others.

“Information was received about the procurement of a significant number of handguns from a member country of the EU, which were delivered to the territory of Ukraine,” the agency said in a statement.

“From there, the weapons were hidden in recessed areas in cars and shipped to regions in the North Caucasus,” the statement added.

Simultaneously, Russia's FSB detained two other members of the criminal group in the North Caucasus, where they were caught red-handed in an attempt to sell some of the smuggled weapons. This operation was an elegant way to get back at the European Union in the ongoing disput about Ukraine. The Kremlin is obviously annoyed with Washington's lackeys in Brussels, who are coming up with one stupid idea after another to punish Russia. The latest masterstroke is to abandon Gazprom's South Stream pipeline project:  

UPDATE 1-Future of South Stream pipeline "gloomy" - Eni CEO

The future of the South Stream pipeline project to carry Russian gas to Europe has been put in question by the escalating dispute over Ukraine, the chief executive of Italian oil major Eni said on Thursday.

The future of the pipeline is "somewhat gloomy", Paolo Scaroni said during a parliamentary hearing in Rome.

"It will put into question the many authorisations that European countries must give to complete the project," Scaroni said.

This would be neither the first nor the last time the EU acts against its own interests in order to please the United States. But besides rumors that the project is "dead", there are no definite actions so far and the involved companies continue with their work.

Turkmenistan Boosts Defense Against Taliban

Russia had to take a lot of criticism from the so-called "international community" for the "invasion" of Crimea and the debate about the legality of the Crimean referendum will not end anytime soon. However, some governments have the guts to stand up to the United States and endorse the Crimean referendum. To the great displeasure of Washington, Kabul also joined this club yesterday, when Afghan President Hamid Karzai told a congressional delegation that Afghanistan respects Crimea's decision to join Russia. Karzai's support for Moscow can be attributed to his new favorite hobby of getting on Obama's nerves as well as to Russian investments in Afghanistan:

As U.S. war ends, Russia returns to Afghanistan with series of investment projects

As the U.S.-led war winds down and Russia reasserts itself in Ukraine and the Middle East, Moscow is also ramping up its investment in Afghanistan. It is rebuilding the relics of the Soviet occupation and promoting its own political and cultural prowess.

“You see Russia’s interest in Afghanistan rising. It’s visible,” said Stepan Anikeev, the spokesman for the Russian Embassy in Kabul. “We want to enlarge our role in the region. It’s not only for Afghanistan, but for our own goals.”

The Russian government has compiled a list of 140 Soviet-era projects that it would like to rehabilitate, according to the embassy. The Kabul Housebuilding Factory, the country’s largest manufacturing facility, was the first to receive assistance last fall: $25 million in new equipment.

In the run-up to the presidential elections in Afghanistan, the "success" of Operation Enduring Freedom is again being highlighted by a dramatic rise in violence. This week, the widely covered attack on the Serena Hotel in Kabul and a suicide bombing in the capital of Faryab Province, resulting in the death of at least 17 civilians, shocked the country. Faryab, one of the remotest northern provinces, experienced recently a sharp increase in terrorist activites. This causes concern in neighboring Turkmenistan, which relies among others on local village militias to protect the Afghanistan-Turkmenistan border:

Turkmens in Afghanistan bar Taliban from crossing border

Ethnic Turkmens in northern Afghanistan are taking up arms to protect Turkmenistan from the Taliban.

Residents of Karkin, Faryab Province, stand ready to defend their homes and protect the border with Turkmenistan from encroachment by Taliban fighters, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL)'s Turkmen service reported March 11.

The Karkin men are taking up arms to address the situation brought about by the emergence of Taliban militants in the region, Gurbandurdy, a former insurgent field commander who fought the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan (1979-1989), told RFE/RL.

In return for the protection of the border, the Turkmen government has pledged to help in reinforcing the riverbank on the Afghan side of the Amu-Darya, the river that separates Afghanistan from Turkmenistan in this area. If the situation deteriorates further, the Turkmen authorities will certainly consider providing more assistance to Gurbandurdy and his men. After at least three Turkmen border guards were killed a few weeks ago supposedly by Taliban fighters, Turkmenistan's inexperienced military, which is even by Central Asian standards poorly maintained and funded, might be called into action anytime soon:

After Afghan Border Violence, Turkmenistan Reportedly Calls Up Reservists

Turkmenistan has called up military reservists to train on its border with Afghanistan following reports of recent skirmishes with Afghanistan-based militants.

On March 18 the Alternative Turkmenistan News (ATN) service reported that Turkmen reservists were being summoned to military enlistment offices to "undergo retraining" near Afghanistan. "In particular, several tens of people have been sent to Serhetabad (formerly Kushka) in the country's south in the past few weeks," ATN said, citing "reliable sources.” The soldiers are being housed in separate barracks without leave and are subject to strict military discipline, ATN said: "There is no more information but there is no talk of full mobilization. Our sources in Ashgabat haven't yet received summons to military enlistment offices."

 
Central Asia Struggles with IMU
Afghanistan's other Central Asian neighbors are also keeping a close eye on the situation. As previously discussed, the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) has established a strong presence in Badakhshan Province in northern Afghanistan and Uzbekistan would prefer if the terrorists stayed there:

Uzbekistan works to bottle up IMU in Afghanistan

In connection with reports of an increase in IMU activity in Afghanistan, Uzbek authorities are discussing ways to keep the terrorist organisation out of Uzbekistan.

The IMU is numerous in Afghanistan, but Uzbek security forces keep the situation under control, Uzbek National Security Service (SNB) spokesman Khotib S. said.

"The IMU has more than 5,000 militants, according to our information," he said. "Just several years ago [they] were mostly based along the Afghan-Pakistani border. Today we are troubled by the combination of increased IMU activity and deployment in northern [Afghanistan], that is, along the border of the former Soviet republics."

Tashkent-based political scientist Rustam Khaydarov also pointed to reports that the IMU has joined forces with the East Turkestan Islamic Movement (ETIM). Since both terrorist groups have vowed to fight against China in accordance with Washington's East Turkestan project, this merger would be hardly surprising. Meanwhile, the IMU has still not given up on NATO's campaign in Syria:

Member of Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan suspected of terrorism detained in Osh Airport

A member of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, suspected of mercenary activities and terrorism, was detained in Osh Airport of Kyrgyzstan, the press service of the Osh police department reported on February 24.

The man, according to the operational data, received military training in Waziristan region of Pakistan within the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan. Then he moved to Turkey where he actively recruited Kyrgyz citizens to fight on the side of the Syrian opposition.

According to Kyrgyzstan's intelligence agency, over 100 natives of Osh region have received military training in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Syria and other countries in recent time and the IMU as well as Hizb ut-Tahrir manage to recruit more and more Kyrgyz citizens. Although the Kyrgyz authorities busted several terrorist recruiters and detained countless members of Hizb ut-Tahrir since the beginning of this year, they fail to get on top of the problem. The same goes for neighboring Tajikistan:

One of Cholov brothers arrested for calling on Kulob youth to participate in jihad in Syria

One of former field commanders of the Popular Front of the Popular Front of Tajikistan (PFT -- a paramilitary group that supported the government during the five-year conflict), Davlat Cholov, has been arrested for calling on Kulob youth to fight on the side of antigovernment forces in Syria, a source at the Ministry of Interior (MoI) told Asia-Plus today.

“There is suspicion that over the past several months, Davlat Cholov has participated in mutiny in Egypt and on return to Tajikistan he was going to call on young men to go with him to Syria to fight on the side on Syrian rebel forces,” the source said.

This week, Tajikistan's Supreme Court sentenced IMU member Alimurod Makhanov, the leader of the terrorist group, which had planned to disrupt last year's sham elections in the Central Asian Republic, to 21 years in prison. The Tajik authorities are very nervous with regards to terrorist activities, as demonstrated by the recent killing of two Afghan fishermen at the hands of Tajik border guards, who had probably mistaken the fishermen for Taliban. 
NED's "Democratic Reforms" In Tajikistan
But Taliban and other terrorists are only a minor threat to the rule of the Tajik regime in comparison with Washington's efforts to implement "democratic reforms" in the country [emphasis mine]:

IWPR holds a training workshop on human rights activists – media cooperation

The representative office of the Institute for War & Peace Reporting (IWPR) in Tajikistan completed a two-day training workshop on Human Rights Defenders and Media Cooperation on March 17.

‘The training workshop was implemented within the framework of a new three-year project “Empowering Media and Civil Society Activists to Support Democratic Reforms in Tajikistan” supported by the European Union under the European Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR) as well as Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and National Endowment for Democracy (NED). 

IWPR's partner organizations include among others the above mentioned International Crisis Group, Freedom House and George Soros' Open Society Institute. So it is only logical that the National Endowment for Democracy, CIA's overt branch, is supporting this project as well. The World Bank, which is also very active in Tajikistan, boasted recently about the large number of NGOs in the Central Asian country:

 

Strengthening Ties with Civil Society in Tajikistan

Civil society in Tajikistan has grown leaps and bounds over the past decade. Registered non-profit or non-governmental organizations grew tenfold from 1997, rising from 300 to 3,000 in 2013.

Dushanbe would be well-advised to follow Moscow's example by examining the funding of these NGOs with a foreign agent law. If Tajik leader Emomalii Rahmon does not realize what the NED, Soros & Co. are up to, he can ask Viktor Yanukovych to explain it to him. In the meantime, Washington is already grooming Rahmon's successor [emphasis mine]:

Oynihol Bobonazarova among 10 women given US bravery award

Ms. Oynihol Bobonazarova, a pioneer of the human rights movement in Tajikistan, was among 10 women awarded as "International Women of Courage" by the U.S. Department of State.

A lawyer by profession, Ms. Bobonazarova is best known for her advocacy of human rights and her work with the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and the Open Society Institute/Assistance Foundation.

# # # #

 

Christoph Germann- BFP Contributing Author & Analyst
Christoph Germann is an independent analyst and researcher based in Germany, where he is currently studying political science. His work focuses on the New Great Game in Central Asia and the Caucasus region. You can visit his website here

Soothing the Beast: Saturday Night BFP-Jamiol Music, Episode 88

BeBe & CeCe Winans – “I'll Take You There”

Last week it was all about soul on the Soothing the Beast BFP/Jamiol Music Pick with Aretha doin' her thing. This week we segue into a little gospel with brother/sister Gospel duo BeBe and CeCe Winans performing their version of the Staple Singers' 1972 hit song I'll Take You There. The Winan cover is one of the better covers of this great song...Enjoy...DJPJ. [Read more...]

Empire, Power, and People with Andrew Gavin Marshall- Episode 88

Iraq Under Obama's Empire

EPPThis episode takes a look at the interaction between Iraq and its imperial patron, the United States, from the parliamentary elections in early 2010, through U.S. efforts to form a government, to the increasing authoritarianism of Prime Minister Maliki, his reaction to Iraq's experience of the Arab Spring, and the US-led effort to pressure the Iraqis to have US forces remain in the country past the planned December 2011 withdrawal. The relationship is complex, hubristic, and imperialistic, and reveals the mere rhetoric of Obama, while retaining the substance of George Bush.

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The EyeOpener Report- 9/11 Truth & the Way Forward: Starting a Real Criminal Investigation

BFP VideoPreserve the crime scene. Follow the money trail. Establish the motive. Look for those with the means to pull off the crime. Any criminal investigator will tell you that these are the most basic principles of any investigation. But none of them were followed on 9/11. Of course, there was no serious criminal investigation. No attempt to preserve the evidence or establish the means, motive or opportunity. No inclination to follow the money. Even the 9/11 commission concluded that the funding of the attacks were of "little practical significance." From the very first moments after the attack, the fix was in.

Find out more about the research and researchers attempting to identify and investigate the real suspects of the crime of 9/11, and how the exposure of these individuals and corporations could help us to reach 9/11 justice in this edition of The EyeOpener Report with James Corbett.

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BFP Select Nightly News & Editorials- August 19, 2013

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“We need to revitalize the American spirit. People are always asking ‘What would the founding fathers do,’ but I have yet to witness a single séance.” --Bauvard, Evergreens Are Prudish

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Syria Rebels Move HQ from Egypt to Turkey

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