Breaking: Journalist Interrogated & Sacked for Exposing CIA-NATO Arming of Terrorists

An investigative journalist has been interrogated by government national security forces and fired from her job for documenting and exposing covert CIA-NATO operations directly arming ISIS and Al Qaeda terrorists- a covert operation involving NATO, CIA, U.S.-based Mega Arms Trafficker(s), a shady U.S. organization ran by well-known Deep State Players, and much more.

Watch this Newsbud exclusive breaking story and investigative report, including our exclusive interview with investigative journalist Dilyana Gaytandzhieva, a candid commentary by Sibel Edmonds, leaked documented evidence, and glaring direct connections to some of the biggest names and entities connected to the Deep State, and CIA-NATO Operation Gladio B.

Correction: At 2:05 Spiro stated Trud Newspaper was based in Belgium, Trud Newspaper is based in Bulgaria

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Show Notes

350 Diplomatic Flights Carry Weapons for Terrorists!

Anonymous Bulgaria Leaks Massive 10GB Of Data: “Silk Way Airlines Helps Terrorists”

The U.S. and Europe Must Investigate Azerbaijani Shipments of Weapons to Terrorists

Connecting the Dots: Afghan Heroin NATO-Azerbaijan Hub

Newsbud Exclusive- NATO-CIA-Pentagon: Junction of the Real Druglords & Warlords

Sibel Edmonds: Azerbaijan- Operation Gladio B

"The Lone Gladio" reveals Washington's strategy for winning the New Great Game

Azerbaijan Keeps Mum about Bust on Georgia Heroin Highway

US-Azerbaijan Chamber of Commerce

‘Worth killing over’: How a plane mogul dodged US scrutiny

Spies and shadowy allies lurk in secret, thanks to firm’s bag of tricks

Iranian-born KC aviation figure with colorful past appears in Panama Papers

Farhad Azima: Panama Papers Expose

Meet The Iranian-Born, Major Clinton Donor Caught Up In The Panama Papers Scandal

Project for the New American Century (PNAC)

Israel Signs $1.6 Billion Arms Deal with Azerbaijan

Israel, Azerbaijan united by arms trade and respect, Netanyahu says on visit

Journalist Interrogated, Fired for Story Linking CIA And Syria Weapons Flights

The Balkanization of Syria & Iraq: The Roadmap to US-Israeli Hegemony in the Middle East

Processing Distortion with Peter B. Collins: Will US Deploy Mercenaries in Syria, Iraq?

Peter B. Collins Presents William Hartung

As the US embarks on a new open-ended war in Iraq and Syria, initial funding is from a Pentagon slush fund, the Overseas Contingency Operations account. Bill Hartung has been analyzing the American war machine for years, and he predicts that military contractors will provide the first “boots on the ground” as trainers and fighters—likely to be followed by uniformed troops. He notes that, so far, no inspector general has been authorized for the new war, so there are few obstacles to profiteers.

*William D. Hartung is director of the Arms And Security Project at the Center for International Policy, and the author of Prophets of War: Lockheed Martin and the Making of the Military-Industrial Complex.

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Empire, Power & People with Andrew Gavin Marshall- Episode 123

America to the Rescue... of Dictators!!

EPPSo, America has begun bombing Syria with the support of an "international coalition" made up of five Arab dictatorships, all of which have been involved in plunging Syria into civil war and in some cases, even supporting the creating of ISIS in the first place. When it comes to the Middle East, to the Arab world, to ISIS, Syria and America's relationship with and actions in that world, we have a game of power politics, leverage, back-room deals, deep state secrets, terrorism, tyranny, drugs and guns. As American bombs fall on Syria, it's important to remind ourselves that they fall with the empty rhetoric of "humanitarian" considerations. The US is not bombing ISIS and Syria to help the populations of the region, but to help the most ruthless dictators in the region.

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De-Manufacturing Consent- “Humanitarian Wars” for Imperial Dreams: Iraq, the Islamic State & James Foley

Guillermo Jimenez Presents Daniel McAdams

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 Syria, 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.

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Iran Sanctions: US Plays Dirty Game

Washington’s Middle East policies are only meant to incite chaos, to capitalize on the chaos and turn things to its own benefit.

The nuclear talks which were infused with unnecessary optimism are no longer seen by many to yield much fruit as Washington once again reveals its true colors and pernicious intentions by imposing further sanctions on Iranian companies and individuals.

As a rule, Washington has never proved to be a trustworthy and reliable dialogical partner and any idea to the contrary stems from a naïve perception of the realities on the ground.

On Friday, the US government announced the imposition of a new round of sanctions on over 25 Iranian individuals and companies, including shipping firms, oil companies, airlines and six banks despite the fact that Iran and the six world powers Russia, China, France, Britain and the US and Germany are in the process of talks with the intention of resolving the West’s nuclear standoff with Iran.

What seems to be the truth of certitude in this regard is that Iran will by no means back down on its rights in the least bit and that further sanctions imposed by the West will only conduce to the complication of an issue which could be resolved if the West really wanted.

In point of fact, the new sanctions which fly in the face of international laws and regulations have exasperated the Iranians and the Iranian officials and fortified the swelling distrust of the Iranian nation in Washington.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has said the sanctions must be confronted because they invade the rights of a nation.

"Sanctions are an invasion of the Iranian nation. We should resist the invasion and put the invaders in their place," Iranian president Hassan Rouhani told officials on Saturday. "We should not allow the continuation and repetition of the invasion."  

The paradox is that Washington has frequently voiced its concern over Iran’s ‘nuclear ambitions’, saying the country may achieve the required technology to produce nuclear weapons while at the same time, it is Washington which capitalizes on chaos and commotion in the world in general and in the Middle East in particular by funding and arming the Takfiri groups in Syria in cahoots with the West in order to oust a legitimate government and replacing it with a US-friendly. And quite brazenly, it turns a blind eye to the subhuman atrocities committed at the hands of the ISIL Takfiri groups in Iraq and Syria.

To crown it all, Iranian pseudo-scholars in the West come up with their uniquely ludicrous remarks concerning the chaos in the Middle East and seek to downplay the mounting sway of the Islamic Republic in the region and instead aggrandize the waning influence of Washington in the world.

In a recent post, Payam Mohseni who runs the Iran Project at the Harvard Kennedy School said, “I perceived the Iranians to be very confident about their rising power ….,” remarking that “Iran has gained much from the regional turmoil, including in Syria and recently in Iraq with the rise of ISIS. This perception was particularly striking during my discussions with leading conservative figures of the state.”

Apparently, he is far removed from the realities as he is physically removed from his country. By far, almost everyone excepting those bereft of political perception knows that it is Washington that is benefiting hugely from the chaos in the Middle East.

Even American officials have admitted to the fact that the ISIL Takfiris are being supported by the West.

Senator Rand Paul has told NBC News’s ‘Meet the Press’ that the US government has been funding ISIL allies and supporting the terrorist group in Syria.

“They're emboldened because we've been supporting them … It could be Assad [could have] wiped these people out months ago,” the Kentucky senator said.

“I personally believe that this group would not be in Iraq and would not be as powerful had we not been supplying their allies in the war.”

Besides, a document released by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden revealed that Ibrahim al-Samarrai AKA Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the man who leads ISIL, is an intelligence asset. The document reveals the United States, Israel, and Britain are responsible for the creation of ISIL.

Nabil Na’eem, the founder of the Islamic Democratic Jihad Party and former top al-Qaeda commander, has told the al-Mayadeen channel that all current al-Qaeda affiliates including ISIS work for the CIA.

To the horror of many, the NSA document disclosed that the group was formed by US, UK and Israel intelligence apparatus as part of a strategy known as the hornet’s nest in order to attract the fundamentalists from around the world to Syria.

After all, if the US has recently shown a sudden interest in combating the ISIL Takfiris who are currently on a beheading spree in Iraq, it seeks other ulterior motives. Just recently, General Martin E. Dempsey, US chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff summarized his perception of the ISIL Takfiris and said, “This is an organization that has an apocalyptic end-of-days strategic vision that will eventually have to be defeated.”

Dempsey noted that destroying ISIL will require "the application of all of the tools of national power — diplomatic, economic, information, military.”

Then he enunciated that liquidating the ISIL militants is only possible through invading Syria.

“Can they be defeated without addressing that part of the organization that resides in Syria? The answer is no," Dempsey told reporters at the Pentagon.

To sum up, Washington’s policies on Syria, Iraq and Iran are purely paradoxical and are only meant to incite chaos, to capitalize on the chaos and turn things to its own benefit. 

In the final analysis, chaos, crisis, sanctions are tools in the hands of Washington to achieve its sinister goal in the Middle East region in the first place i.e. giving a practical shape to a long-envisioned plan in the first place, that is, creating a Greater Middle East utterly servile to the USA and in the second, to strategically stifle Iran as a burgeoning and snowballing power.

# # # #

Dr. Ismail Salami is an internationally published author, literary scholar, Quranologist, political commentator, and lexicographer. He writes extensively on the US and Middle East issues and his writings have been translated into a number of languages. Salami is a former editor-in-chief of the Tehran Times International Daily. He currently teaches English literature at the University of Tehran.

De-Manufacturing Consent- The Snowden-ISIS Hoax

Guillermo Jimenez Presents Tom Secker

On this edition of De-Manufacturing Consent: Guillermo is joined by Tom Secker, host of the ClandesTime podcast and author of the book Secret, Spies, and 7/7.

We discuss the "Snowden-ISIS hoax," the false "news" story that has been circulating through the internet over the past few weeks that claims former NSA contractor Edward Snowden released documents proving the CIA/MI6/Mossad are running the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and its leader Al-Badhdadi.

We explain the origins of this story, why it's completely bogus, and who may have been responsible for its propagation. We also get into the "real story" of ISIS and discuss the evidence that is actually available that suggests the CIA/NATO have been pulling the strings all along.

Lastly, we round out our conversation with a discussion on the alternative media, the pitfalls of "breaking news," and how we can work together to avoid being misled by false information gone viral.

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The New Great Game Round-Up: July 20, 2014

Halliburton's Fracking Deal in Xinjiang, Turkish Airlines Transporting Tajik Jihadists to Syria and Iraq & 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 in Central Asia and the Caucasus region between a U.S.-dominated NATO, its GCC proxies, Russia, China and other regional players.

Europe's dependence on Russian gas has been a thorn in Washington's side for quite some time. In recent weeks, the United States and its lackeys in Brussels tried hard to sabotage Gazprom's South Stream pipeline, to no avail. Austria, Italy, Serbia and a few other European countries are not willing to give up on the project. Washington and Brussels will certainly exploit the MH17 tragedy to put more pressure on these "traitors". The U.S. collaborators in Europe have demonstrated repeatedly that they will do everything in their power to reduce Russia's influence in the European energy sector, if necessary at the expense of EU energy security. Gas from the Caspian Sea region is seen as the solution and UK Energy Minister Michael Fallon vowed during his recent visit to Azerbaijan that the West will counteract Russia's attempts to "interfere" with the Southern Gas Corridor. It is not exactly clear which interference Fallon is alluding to but his other statements suggest that he is full of it:

Implementation of Trans-Caspian gas pipeline to increase stability in region

The implementation of Trans-Caspian gas pipeline will increase stability in the region, UK Energy Minister Michael Fallon told journalists in Baku.

Commenting on the opinion that Russia's position on the said project is fairly rigid, Fallon noted that the Russia was sanctioned for actions against Ukraine. 

"We will continue to use them in order to make it clear: any escalation of tensions in the southeast of the country will lead to new sanctions. We work on these issues with partners in Europe. The existing tension makes more relevant the issue of reducing Europe's dependence on Russian gas," Fallon said.

Tony Blair to Reduce Europe's Dependence on Russian Gas

Fallon seems to confuse stability with war. Threatening Russia with more sanctions in order to implement the Trans-Caspian project is a great idea but only if you are trying to provoke a war with Russia. Gazprom has already made clear that this is a real possibility if the project goes forward. Without the Trans-Caspian pipeline the Southern Gas Corridor is only a minor threat to Gazprom. Given that the U.S. and the EU have high hopes for this initiative of the European Commission, there will be increasing efforts to build the Trans-Caspian pipeline along with other Southern Corridor projects. Western companies recently set up an advisory panel to guide the development of the Southern Gas Corridor and the hired personal indicates that they are dead serious about it:

Tony Blair to advise on Azerbaijan gas project

Tony Blair, the former British prime minister, has been hired to advise a BP-led consortium on the export of natural gas from Azerbaijan to Europe, in a sign of the efforts now being made by western companies to reduce reliance on Russian supplies.

Mr Blair will join former German foreign minister Hans-Dietrich Genscher and the chairman of Goldman Sachs International, Peter Sutherland – a former chairman of BP – on an advisory panel being set up by
BP and its partners, a person close to the Azeri project said.

BP said the Southern Corridor Advisory Panel will “advise on political, environmental, reputational and societal challenges that may be faced by the Shah Deniz 2, TANAP and TAP projects during their early years”.

War criminal Tony Blair surfaced a few days ago, when he initiated the so-called "ceasefire", which was proposed by Israel and Egypt during the ongoing massacre in Gaza. Hamas rejected the ceasefire because the terms amounted virtually to a surrender by Hamas. One European diplomat described it rightly as a trap. The purpose of Blair's ceasefire was not to stop the killing of Palestinians but to get rid of Hamas in order to pave the way for the "development" of the Gaza gas fields. Blair has been championing this cause for several years. The former UK Prime Minister will now also play a growing role in the development of the gas fields in the Caspian region. Considering that Blair already advised the Kazakh government on a "reform program" from 2011 until last year, he should not have problems in dealing with the region's authoritarian regimes, unlike some fellow warmongers:

Baku comments on Carl Bildt’s statements regarding Azerbaijan

Deputy Head of the Azerbaijani Presidential Administration, Head of the Foreign Relations Department, Novruz Mammadov commented on the opinions expressed by Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt regarding Azerbaijan at the Atlantic Council meeting in Washington,
APA reports.

“Unfortunately, there are many such politicians in the international community. They think that everybody should accept and obey what they say. However they don’t understand yet that their irresponsible and narrow-minded thoughts have led the world to such a situation. Today, the ongoing negative processes, conflicts, political instability and tensions in different countries are the result of their thoughts and activities. They are unable to understand the essence of processes in the world. They just memorize some expressions and words, like parrots, and think that they fulfill their duties by using them as a means of pressure”, he said.

Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt said at the Atlantic Council’s meeting in Washington that he has serious doubts about the sincerity of Azerbaijan’s participation in the Eastern Partnership program as an authoritarian regime is dominating in the country.

Carl Bildt's criticism comes amid increasing tensions between Baku and Washington. Although Azerbaijan-NATO cooperation continues unabated, the rift is visible. This week, CIA's Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) released a fairly comprehensive report about the shady business dealings of the Aliyev family emphasizing that the Azerbaijani authorities "are capable of monitoring phone calls and website visits on a massive scale." Meanwhile, the Azerbaijani media turned the spotlight on the suspicious activities of USAID in the country and announced that cooperation with the Peace Corps has been terminated:

Azerbaijan is using “operational pause" against Peace Corps

On June 20th, Azerbaijan Ministry of Foreign Affairs sent a diplomatic note to the Peace Corps, kindly informing them of the government’s intention to cancel the Memorandum of Understanding (MEU) between a US-run volunteer program and the Ministry of Economic Development, TURAN’s Washington DC correspondent was informed by sources that closely follow the issue.

The move comes just months after the Azeri government
terminated Peace Corps' two other major programs focusing on youth development and English education sector in the country. Peace Corps’ programs in Azerbaijan have seen more than 500 volunteers rotate through since 2003. Since later last year, however, the Azeri government started refusing to accept a large number of volunteers without any official explanation.Some Baku authorities reportedly said it was a “logical step as the country is not poor and does not require such help.”

Halliburton's Fracking Deal in Xinjiang

As previously discussed, the Aliyev regime might be tempted to establish closer ties with Beijing in the light of the latest quarrel with Washington. China prefers not to meddle in other countries' affairs, in contrast to the United States. At the beginning of this month, Baku offered the Chinese government to expand cooperation "in all fields" and a few days ago, there was some talk about closer cooperation in the security sphere. Azerbaijan would blend in well with China's other questionable partners in the War on Terror. This week, China and the U.S. held high-level talks on anti-terror cooperation. Knowing that China's terror problem can be traced back to Washington, the Chinese officials urged the Americans to "abandon double standards in addressing terrorism" and "support China's efforts to strike the East Turkestan terrorists." This will hardly prompt Washington to drop the East Turkestan project but, given Halliburton's latest deal in Xinjiang, at least China's extraction of oil and shale gas will not be impeded by the 'East Turkestan forces':  

Halliburton's new China JV targets Xinjiang tight oil, gas 

A newly formed oil service joint venture between a private Chinese firm and U.S. oil service giant Halliburton Co plans to focus on tapping tight oil and gas reserves in China's remote western region of Xinjiang.

China is stepping up development of more difficult-to-extract resources including tight oil and shale gas, leading more local firms to seek alliances with global oilfield service companies with high-end drilling technology and experience.

The latest venture between Halliburton and China's SPT Energy, known as Xinjiang HTDT, joins similar tie-ups between U.S.-listed Weatherford and China's Sinopec Group and U.S. fracking giant FTS International with Sinopec.

The Chinese authorities are probably hoping that the Halliburton deal will contribute to the stability of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region. After all, this is their primary concern. Lately, a $3.2 billion fund was set up to boost the textile industry in Xinjiang in an effort to enhance stability by tackling the unemployment problem. However, unemployment is not the only thing fuelling ethnic tension. China's actions in the War on Terror often have counterproductive effects. The new posters, showing the stereotypical image of Uyghur insurgents with the purpose of warning citizens against helping bearded terrorists, are the latest example. CIA's Radio Free Asia (RFA) is always doing its best to highlight the ethnic tensions in Xinjiang and according to the anti-Chinese propaganda outlet, last week another deadly incident took place:

Six Han Chinese Farmers Stabbed to Death in Xinjiang

Six ethnic majority Han Chinese farmers have been stabbed to death in the latest outbreak of violence in China's western Xinjiang region, police and local officials said.

Police shot dead an ethnic minority Uyghur man and captured three other Uyghur suspects following the incident last Wednesday in Uchturpan (in Chinese, Wushi) county in Aksu prefecture in mid-western Xinjiang, the officials said.

A copy of a warrant of arrest was published online naming six suspects in the stabbing incident, which occurred in Uchturpan's No. 7 village in Imamlirim township on July 9. Their names all sounded Uyghur. 

These were probably just "freedom-loving Uyghurs demanding dignity in China", as Alim Seytoff, President of the NED-funded Uyghur American Association (UAA), put it in his recent propaganda piece in The Huffington Post. Seytoff's arguments fail to convince the authorities in Xinjiang, where the fight against Seytoff's "freedom-loving Uyghurs" has reached worrying levels. Even matches are now being banned and destroyed to ensure that they are not used by "terrorist groups or individual extremists to carry out criminal activities." Furthermore, the military is supposed to play a bigger role in everyday life. The vice chairman of China's Central Military Commission Xu Qiliang urged the troops stationed in Xinjiang "to help local people in practical things" in order to stabilize the region. At the end of the day, it is all about the stability of the region. Therefore, China is also keeping a close eye on the situation in neighboring Afghanistan and the latest move suggests that Beijing is prepared to step up its activities in the war-torn country: 

China appoints special envoy for Afghanistan

China's Foreign Ministry said on Friday that it had appointed a special envoy for
Afghanistan, underscoring Beijing's concerns that the withdrawal of NATO troops will leave a hotbed of militancy on its doorstep.

Sun Yuxi, a former ambassador to both
Afghanistan and India, has been named to the new position and will have "close communication" with Afghanistan and other relevant parties, the ministry said in a statement.

One of China's chief worries is that Uighur militants who want a separate state in western China's Xinjiang region will step up their fight by exploiting the security vacuum left after the bulk of NATO forces withdraw by the end of the year.

Turkish Airlines Transports Tajik Jihadists to Syria & Iraq

China is already very involved in safeguarding the stability of the Central Asian republics. Chinese investments in Kyrgyzstan's infrastructure were recently discussed (here and here) and Tajikistan will get some assistance as well. Chinese companies are reportedly looking to construct a large cement plant in Gorno-Badakhshan and to invest about $200 million in Tajikistan's cotton industry, which would create thousands of jobs according to the Tajik authorities. Jobs are badly needed considering that the dire socioeconomic conditions are driving many young Tajiks to pursue a career as jihadi mercenary: 

Turkish Airline Transporting Tajik Militants to Syria, Iraq

"The airliner transported 91 Takfiri Tajiks from Dushanbe to Istanbul at 21:10 on July 2 onboard flight 254," a source, who asked to remain unnamed for fear of his life, told FNA, and added, "The militants were later transferred to Iraq to join their ISIL co-fighters."

According to the source, the Saudi embassy in Dushanbe acts as the headquarter for recruiting, organizing and leading the terrorists in Tajikistan to send them to Syria and Iraq.

"Abu Tariq, the first secretary of the Saudi embassy, is in charge of payments and costs of the militants' transportation fees," he added.

The source also mentioned that "Turkish Air has transferred about 1,000 Takfiri Tajik fighters to Iraq so far".

The Iranians have previously pointed out that Turkish Airlines transported Albanian terrorists from Tirana to Istanbul after they had been recruited by one of the infamous Turkish "aid organizations" for jihad in Syria. More recently, Turkish Airlines made the headlines, when tapes, leaked by the Gülen movement, incriminated the airline in arms shipments to Nigeria. The involvement of the Saudi embassy in the Tajik terrorist recruitment scheme should come as no real surprise either. Besides the U.S. and Turkey, Saudi Arabia is the driving force behind the current offensive of the Islamic State (IS) and the Saudis have been meddling in Tajikistan for quite some time. The Tajik regime turns a blind eye to these activities as long as the insurgents fight abroad. However, Tajik terrorists who return home from Syria are usually taken off the streets since the Tajik authorities are not planning to turn the country into an international jihadi paradise:

Citizen of Iraq detained in Tajikistan while trying to cross Tajik-Afghan border

A citizen of Iraq, 47, was detained by officers of the Tajikistan's Interior Ministry while trying to illegally cross the Tajik-Afghan border, the press service of the Ministry reported.

The man was detained in the framework of search operations conducted on July 13 in Farkhor district near the border with Afghanistan.

Tajik Interior Minister Ramazon Rahimzoda boasted this week about the number of detained terrorists in the last few months. According to Rahimzoda, 49 members of terrorist or extremist groups were arrested in the first half of this year, including five members of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) and 12 members of the IMU splinter group Jamaat Ansarullah. This is of course only the tip of the iceberg, as the search for several families from Tajikistan's Sughd Province demonstrates:

87 Sughd Oblast residents sought in extremism inquiry

Eighty-seven Sughd Oblast residents, including 24 women and 34 children, are wanted on suspicion of going abroad to join various extremist and terrorist groups, media reported July 17, quoting oblast police chief Sharif Nazarov at a July 16 news conference.

The extremist movements include Jamaat Ansarullah, Jundullah and the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU), Avesta.tj reported. Destinations of the 87 fugitives include Syria, Nazarov said.

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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

De-Manufacturing Consent- Mission Accomplished?! Iraq Crisis Continues with Latest US-Trained Boogeymen

Guillermo Jimenez Presents Peter Van Buren

On this edition of De-Manufacturing Consent: Guillermo is joined by Peter Van Buren, State Department whistleblower, and author of the books We Meant Well: How I Helped Lost the Battle for the Hearts and Minds of the Iraqi People, and Ghosts of Tom Joad: A Story of the 99 percent. We discuss Peter's time in the State Department, leading two Provincial Reconstruction Teams in Iraq from 2009 to 2010, what he saw, and why he blew the whistle. Peter summarizes the complex situation in Iraq, the various competing interests involved, and the disastrous consequences of US intervention. We also discuss the recent redeployment of US "advisors" and Apache gunships to combat the latest US trained and funded bogeymen in ISIS (the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria).

We round out our conversation by talking about the "crime" of linking online, how Peter's whistleblowing case relates to Barrett Brown's, and the motivation for writing Ghosts of Tom Joad.

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Washington’s Iraq “Victory”

The Neoconservative conquest of the Middle East is becoming an al Qaeda conquest

The citizens of the United States still do not know why their government destroyed Iraq. “National Security” will prevent them from ever knowing. “National Security” is the cloak behind which hides the crimes of the US government.

George Herbert Walker Bush, a former Director of the Central Intelligence Agency who became President courtesy of being picked as Ronald Reagan’s Vice President, was the last restrained US President. When Bush the First attacked Iraq it was a limited operation, the goal of which was to evict Saddam Hussein from his annexation of Kuwait.

Kuwait was once a part of Iraq, but a Western colonial power created new political boundaries, as the Soviet Communist Party did in Ukraine. Kuwait emerged from Iraq as a small, independent oil kingdom.

According to reports, Kuwait was drilling at an angle across the Iraq/Kuwait border into Iraqi oil fields. On July 25, 1990, Saddam Hussein, with Iraqi troops massed on the border with Kuwait, asked President George H. W. Bush’s ambassador, April Glaspie, if the Bush administration had an opinion on the situation. Here is Ambassador Glaspie’s reply:

“We have no opinion on your Arab-Arab conflicts, such as your dispute with Kuwait. Secretary [of State James] Baker has directed me to emphasize the instruction, first given to Iraq in the 1960’s that the Kuwait issue is not associated with America.”

According to this transcript, Saddam Hussein is further assured by high US government officials that Washington does not stand in his way in reunifying Iraq and putting a halt to a gangster family’s theft of Iraqi oil:

“At a Washington press conference called the next day, State Department spokesperson Margaret Tutweiler was asked by journalists:

‘Has the United States sent any type of diplomatic message to the Iraqis about putting 30,000 troops on the border with Kuwait? Has there been any type of protest communicated from the United States government?’

“to which she responded: ‘I’m entirely unaware of any such protest.’

“On July 31st, two days before the Iraqi invasion [of Kuwait], John Kelly, Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern affairs, testified to Congress that the ‘United States has no commitment to defend Kuwait and the U.S. has no intention of defending Kuwait if it is attacked by Iraq’.”

Was this an intentional a set-up of Saddam Hussein, or did the Iraqi takeover of Kuwait produce frantic calls from the Bush family’s Middle Eastern business associates?

Whatever explains the dramatic, sudden, total change of position of the US government, the result produced military action that fell short of war on Iraq itself.

From 1990 until 2003 Iraq was acceptable to the US government.

Suddenly, in 2003 Iraq was no longer acceptable. We don’t know why. We were told a passel of lies: Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction that were a threat to America. The specter of a “mushroom cloud over an American city” was raised by the National Security Advisor. The Secretary of State was sent to the UN with a collection of lies with which to build acceptance of US naked aggression against Iraq. The icing on the cake was the claim that Saddam Hussein’s secular government “had al Qaeda connections,” al Qaeda bearing the blame for 9/11.

As neither Congress nor the US media have any interest to know the reason for Washington’s about face on Iraq, the “Iraq Threat” will remain a mystery for Americans.

But the consequences of Washington’s destruction of the secular government of Saddam Hussein, a government that managed to hold Iraq together without the American-induced violence that has made the country a permanent war zone, has been ongoing years of violence on a level equal to, or in excess of, the violence associated with the US occupation of Iraq.

Washington is devoid of humanitarian concerns. Hegemony is Washington’s only concern. As in Afghanistan, Libya, Somalia, Pakistan, Yemen, Ukraine, Syria, and Iraq, Washington brings only death, and death is ongoing in Iraq.

On June 12, 500,000 residents of Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city, benefactors of Washington’s “freedom and democracy” liberation, fled the city as the American trained army collapsed and fled under al Qaeda attack. The Washington-installed government, fearing Baghdad is next, has asked Washington for air strikes against the al Qaeda troops. Tikrit and Kirkuk have also fallen. Iran has sent two battalions of Revolutionary Guards to protect the Washington-installed government in Baghdad.

(After this article was published, Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani dismissed the widespread news reports–Wall Street Journal, World Tribune, The Guardian, Telegraph, CNBC, Daily Mail, Times of Israel, etc.–that Iran has sent troops to help the Iraqi government. Once again the Western media has created a false reality with false reports.)

Does anyone remember the propaganda that Washington had to overthrow Saddam Hussein in order to bring “freedom and democracy and women’s rights to Iraqis”? We had to defeat al Qaeda, which at the time was not present in Iraq, “over there before they came over here.”

Do you remember the neoconservative promises of a “cakewalk war” lasting only a few weeks, of the war only costing $70 billion to be paid out of Iraqi oil revenues, of George W. Bush’s economic advisor being fired for saying that the war would cost $200 billion? The true cost of the war was calculated by economist Joseph Stiglitz and Harvard University budget expert Linda Bilmes who showed that the Iraqi war cost US taxpayers $3 trillion dollars, an expenditure that threatens the US social safety net.

Do you remember Washington’s promises that Iraq would be put on its feet by America as a democracy in which everyone would be safe and women would have rights?

What is the situation today?

Mosul, the second largest city in Iraq, has just been overrun by al Qaeda forces. These are the forces that Washington has claimed a number of times to have completely defeated.

These “defeated” forces now control Iraq’s second largest city and a number of provinces. The person Washington left in charge of Iraq is on his knees begging Washington for military help and air support against the Jihadist forces that the incompetent Bush regime unleashed in the Muslim world.

What Washington has done in Iraq and Libya, and is trying to do in Syria, is to destroy governments that kept Jihadists under control. Washington faces the prospect of a Jihadist government encompassing Iraq and Syria. The Neoconservative conquest of the Middle East is becoming an al Qaeda conquest.

Washington has opened Pandora’s Box. This is Washington’s accomplishment in the Middle East.

Even as Iraq falls to al Qaeda, Washington is supplying the al Qaeda forces attacking Syria with heavy weapons. It is demonized Iran that has sent troops to defend the Washington-installed regime in Baghdad! Is it possible for a country to look more foolish than Washington looks?

One conclusion that we can reach is that the arrogance and hubris that defines the US government has rendered Washington incapable of making a rational, logical decision. Megalomania rules in Washington.

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Paul Craig Roberts, Boiling Frogs Post contributing author, is a former Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury and former associate editor of the Wall Street Journal. He has been reporting on executive branch and cases of prosecutorial abuse for two decades. He has written or co-written eight books, contributed chapters to numerous books, and has published many articles in journals of scholarship. Mr. Roberts has testified before congressional committees on 30 occasions on issues of economic policy, and has been a critic of both Democratic and Republican administrations. You can visit his website here.

© PaulCraigRoberts.org

Obama- “Remaking the Middle East”: The American Gulag

The Scale & Scope of Political Repression in Each US Backed Police State

During the beginning of his first term in office President Obama promised “to remake the Middle East into a region of prosperity and freedom”. Six years later the reality is totally the contrary: the Middle East is ruled by despotic regimes whose jails are overflowing with political prisoners.

The vast majority of pro-democracy activists who have been incarcerated, have been subject to harsh torture and are serving long prison sentences. The rulers lack legitimacy, having seized power and maintained their rule through a centralized police state and military repression. Direct US military and CIA intervention, massive shipments of arms, military bases, training missions and Special Forces are decisive in the construction of the Gulag chain from North Africa to the Gulf States.

We will proceed by documenting the scale and scope of political repression in each US backed police state. We will then describe the scale and scope of US military aid buttressing the “remaking of the Middle East” into a chain of political prisons run by and for the US Empire.

The countries and regimes include Egypt, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Iraq, Yemen, Jordan and Turkey . . . all of which promote and defend US imperial interests against the pro-democracy majority, represented by their independent social-political movements.

Egypt: Strategic Vassal State

A longtime vassal state and the largest Arab country in the Middle East, Egypt’s current military dictatorship, product of a coup in July 2013, launched a savage wave of repression

subsequent to seizing power. According to the Egyptian Center for Social and Economic Rights, between July and December 2013, 21,317 pro-democracy demonstrators were arrested. As of April 2014, over 16,000 political prisoners are incarcerated. Most have been tortured. The summary trials, by kangaroo courts, have resulted in death sentences for hundreds and long prison terms for most. The Obama regime has refused to call the military’s overthrow of the democratically elected Morsi government a coup in order to continue providing military aid to the junta.In exchange the military dictatorship continues to back the Israeli blockade of Gaza and support US military operations throughout the Middle East.

Israel: The Region’s Biggest Jailer

Israel, whose supporters in the US dub it the “only democracy in the Middle East”, is in fact the largest jailer in the region.

According to the Israeli human rights group B’Tselm, between 1967 and December 2012, 800,000 Palestinians have been imprisoned at some point, over 20% of the population. Over 100,000 have been held in “administrative detention” without charges or trial. Almost all have been tortured and brutalized. Currently Israel has 4,881 political prisoners in jail. What makes the Jewish state God’s chosen… premier jailer, however, is the holding of 1.82 million Palestinians living in Gaza in a virtual open air prison. Israel restricts travel, trade, fishing, building , manufacturing and farming through air, sea and ground policing and blockades. In addition, 2.7 million Palestinians in the Occupied Territories (West Bank) are surrounded by prison-like walls, subject to daily military incursions, arbitrary arrests and violent assaults by the Israeli armed forces and Jewish vigilante settlers engaged in perpetual dispossession of Palestinian inhabitants.

Saudi Arabia: Absolutist Monarchy

According to President Obama’s ‘remaking of Middle East’ Saudi Arabia stands as Washington’s “staunchest ally in the Arab world”. As a loyal vassal state, its jails overflow with pro-democracy dissidents incarcerated for seeking free elections, civil liberties and an end to misogynist policies. According to the Islamic Human Rights Commission the Saudis are holding 30,000 political prisoners, most arbitrarily detained without charges or trial.

The Saudi dictatorship plays a major role bankrolling police state regimes throughout the region. They have poured $15 billion into the coffers of the Egyptian junta subsequent to the military coup, as a reward for its massive bloody purge of elected officials and their pro-democracy supporters. Saudi Arabia plays a big role in sustaining Washington’s dominance, by financing and arming ‘jailer-regimes’ in Pakistan, Yemen, Bahrain, Jordan and Egypt.

Bahrain: Small Country – Many Jails

According to the local respected Center for Human Rights, Bahrain has the dubious distinction of being the “top country globally in the number of political prisoners per capita”. According to the Economist (4/2/14) Bahrain has 4,000 political prisoners out of a population of 750,000. According to the Pentagon, Bahrain’s absolutist dictatorship plays a vital role in providing the US with air and maritime bases, for attacking Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan. The majority of pro-democracy dissidents are jailed for seeking to end vassalage , autocracy, and servility to US imperial interest and the Saudi dictatorship.

Iraq: Abu Ghraib with Arab Characters

Beginning with the US invasion and occupation of Iraq in 2003 and continuing under its proxy vassal Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki, tens of thousands of Iraqi citizens have been tortured, jailed and murdered. Iraq’s ruling junta, has continued to rely on US military and Special Forces and to engage in the same kinds of military and police ‘sweeps’ which eviscerate any democratic pretensions. Al-Maliki relies on special branches of his secret police, the notorious Brigade 56, to assault opposition communities and dissident strongholds. Both the Shi’a regime and Sunni opposition engage in ongoing terror-warfare. Both have served as close collaborators with Washington at different moments.

The weekly death toll runs in the hundreds. The Al-Maliki regime has taken over the torture centers (including Abu Ghraib), techniques and jails previously headed and run by the US and have retained US ‘Special Forces’ advisers, overseeing the round-up of human rights critics, trade unionists and democratic dissidents.

Yemen: A Joint US-Saudi Satellite

Yemen has been ruled by US-Saudi client dictators for decades. The autocratic rule of Ali Abdullah Saleh was accompanied by the jailing and torture of thousands of pro-democracy activists, secular and religious, as well as serving as a clandestine torture center for political dissidents kidnapped and transported by the CIA under its so-called “rendition” program. In 2011 despite prolonged and violent repression by the US backed Saleh regime, a mass rebellion exploded threatening the existence of the state and its ties to the US and Saudi regimes. In order to preserve their dominance and ties to the military, Washington and Saudi orchestrated a ‘reshuffle’ of the regime: rigged elections were held and one Abdo Rabbo Mansour Hadi, a loyal crony of Saleh and servant of Washington, took power. Hadi continued where Saleh left off: kidnapping, torturing, killing pro-democracy protestors… Washington chose to call Hadi’s rule “a transition to democracy”. According to the Yemen Times (4/5/14) over 3,000 political prisoners fill the Yemen prisons. “Jailhouse democracy” serves to consolidate the US military presence in the Arabian Peninsula.

Jordan: A Client Police State of Longstanding Duration

For over a half century, three generations of reigning Jordanian absolutist monarchs have been on the CIA payroll and have served US interests in the Middle East. Jordan’s vassal rulers savage Arab nationalists and Palestinian resistance movements; signed off on a so-called “peace agreement” with Israel to repress any cross-border support for Palestine; provide military bases in support of US, Saudi and EU training, arming and financing of mercenaries invading Syria.

The corrupt monarchy and its crony oligarchy oversee an economy perpetually dependent on foreign subsidies to keep it afloat: unemployment is running over 25% and half the population is subsisting in poverty. The regime has jailed thousands of peaceful protestors. According to a recent Amnesty International Report (Jordan 2013), King Abdullah’s dictatorship “has detained thousands without charges”. The jailhouse monarchy plays a central role in buttressing US empire-building in the Middle East and facilitating Israeli land grabbing in Palestine.

Turkey: NATO Bulwark and Jailhouse Democracy

Under the reign of the self-styled “Justice and Development Party” led by Tayyip Erdoğan, Turkey has evolved into a major military operational base for the NATO backed invasion of Syria. Erdoğan has had his differences with the US; especially Turkey’s cooling relations with Israel over the latters’ seizure of a Turkish ship in international waters and the slaughter of nine unarmed Turkish humanitarian activists. But as Turkey has turned toward greater dependence on international capital flows and integration into NATO’s international wars, Erdoğan has become more authoritarian. Facing large scale public challenges to his arbitrary privatization of public spaces and dispossession of households in working class neighborhoods, Erdoğan launched a purge of civil society ,class based movements and state institutions. In the face of large scale pro-democracy demonstrations in the summer of 2013, Erdoğan launched a savage assault on the dissidents. According to human rights groups over 5,000 were arrested and 8,000 were injured during the Gezi Park protests. Earlier Erdoğan established “Special Authorized Courts” which organized political show trials based on falsified evidence which facilitated the arrest and imprisonment of hundreds of military officers, party activists, trade unionists, human rights lawyers and journalists, particularly those critical of his support for the war against Syria. Despite conciliatory rhetoric, Erdogan’s jails contain several thousand Kurdish dissidents, including electoral activists and legislators (Global Views 10/17/12).

While Erdoğan has served as an able and loyal Islamist anchor against popular democratic and nationalist movements in the Middle East, his pursuit of greater Turkish influence in the region, has led the US to deepen its political ties with the more submissive and pro-Washington , pro-Israel Gulenist movement embedded in the state apparatus ,business and education. The latter has adopted a permeationist-strategy: purging adversaries in its quiet march to power from within the state. The US still relies on Erdoğan’s “jailhouse democracy” to repress anti-imperialist movements in Turkey; to serve as a military anchor for the war against Syria; to back sanctions against Iran and to support the pro-NATO Maliki regime in Iraq.

The Middle East Gulag and US Military Aid

The police state regimes and the long-term authoritarian political culture in the Arab world is a product of long-term US military support for despotic rulers. The absence of democracy is a necessary condition for expanding and advancing the US imperial military presence in the region.

A small army of US Islamophobic academics, “experts”, journalists and media pundits totally ignore the role of the US in promoting, sustaining and strengthening the ruling dictators and repressing the profoundly democratic mass movements which have erupted over a prolonged period of time. Spearheaded by long-time pro-Israel Middle East scribes and scholars, in Ivy League universities, these propagandists, claim that Arab dictatorships are a product of “Islamic culture”,or the “authoritarian personality of Arabs” in search of a ‘strongman’ to guide and rule them. Ignoring or distorting the history of working class struggles, pro-democracy protests and affirmations, in all of the major Arab countries, these scholars justify the US ties to the dictatorships as “realistic policies” given the “available options”. Wherever real democracy begins to emerge, where political rights begin to be exercised, Washington provokes coups and intervenes to bolster the repressive apparatus of the state (Bahrain 2011-14, Yemen 2011 to 2014, Egypt 2013, Jordan 2012 among numerous other cases). While the bulk of the Middle East “experts” blame the Arab citizens for authoritarian rule, they completely ignore and cover-up Israel’s racist majority which solidly backs the incarceration and torture of hundreds of thousands of pro-democracy Palestinians.

To understand the Middle East gulag requires a discussion of US ‘aid policy’ which is central to sustaining the ‘jailhouse regimes’.

US Aid to Egypt: Billions for Dictators

The Egyptian police state anchors the US ‘arc of empire’ from North Africa to the Middle East. Egypt has been actively engaged in destabilizing Libya, Sudan, Lebanon, Syria and collaborating with Israel’s dispossession of Palestinians. The Mubarak dictatorship received $2 billion dollars a year from Washington – nearly $65 billion for its imperial services. US aid strengthened its capacity to jail, and torture pro-democracy and trade union activists. Washington continued its military support of dictatorial rule after the military coup against Egypt’s first democratically elected government, to the tune of $1.55 billion dollars for 2014 . Despite “expressions of concern” over the murder of thousands of pro-democracy protestors by the new military strongman General Abdul Fattah al-Sisi, there was no cut in funding for so-called “counter-terrorism” and “security”. To continue funding the dictatorship under US Congressional legislation, Washington refused to characterize the violent seizure of power as a coup . . . referring to it as a “transition to democracy”. The key role of Egypt in US foreign policy is to protect Israel’s ‘eastern flank’. US aid to Egypt is product of the pressure and influence of the Zionist power configuration in Congress and the White House: US aid is conditioned on Egypt’s ‘policing’ of the Gaza border, ensuring that Israel’s blockade is effective. The White House supports Cairo’s repression of the majority of nationalist, anti-colonial Egyptians opposed to Tel Aviv’s dispossession of the Palestinians. Insofar as Israel’s interests’define US Middle East policy, Washington’s financing of Egypt’s jailhouse dictatorship is in accord with Zionist Washington’s strategy.

Israel: The US “Pivot” in the Middle East

Most independent and knowledgeable experts agree that US Middle East policy is largely dictated by a multitude of Zionist loyalists occupying key policymaking positions in Treasury, State Department, the Pentagon and Commerce as well as Congressional dominance by the Presidents of the 52 Major American Jewish Organizations and their 171,000 full time paid activists. While there is some truth in what some critics cite as the divergence of the ‘real’ US ‘national interest’ from Israel’s colonial ambitions, the fact is that US leaders in Washington perceive a convergence between imperial dominance and Israeli militarism. In point of fact a submissive Egypt serves wider US imperial and Israeli colonial interests. Israel’s war on Lebanon against the anti-imperialist Hezbollah movement served US efforts to install a docile client as well as Israeli’s effort to destroy a partisan of Palestinian self-determination. Washington’s divergence with Israel over Israel’s dispossession of all Palestine does run counter to Washington’s interest in a Palestinian mini-state run by neo-colonial Arab officials. As a result of Zionist influence, Israel is the biggest per-capita US aid recipient in the world, despite having a higher standard of living than 60% of US citizens. Between 1985-2014, Israel received over $100 billion dollars, of which 70% was military, including the most advance high technology weaponry. Israel ,the country which has the world record for political prisoners and military attacks on its neighbors over the past forty years, holds the record for US military aid. Israel as the premier ‘jailhouse democracy’ is a key link in the chain of gulags extending from North Africa to the Gulf States.

Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia competes with Israel as an incarceration center of pro-democracy dissidents; the Saudi’s recycle hundreds of billions of petro-rents through Wall Street, enriching local Saudi despots and overseas pro-Israel investment bankers. The Saudi-US-Israeli convergence is more than incidental. They share military interests in warring against pro-independence, pro-democracy Arab movements throughout the Middle East. Saudi houses the major US military base and the biggest intelligence operations in the Gulf. It backed the US invasion of Iraq. It finances thousands of Islamic mercenaries in the US-NATO proxy war against Syria. It invaded Bahrain to smash the pro-democracy movement. It intervenes with Washington in support of the Yemen police state. It is the biggest and most lucrative market for the US military-industrial complex. US military sales between 1951 – 2006 totaled $80 billion. In October 2010 it signed off on a $60.5 billion purchase of US arms and services.

Bahrain: A US Aircraft Carrier called a Country

Bahrain serves as the naval base for the US Fifth fleet – and an operative base for attacking Iran. It has been servicing the occupation of Afghanistan and US control of oil shipping routes. The Al-Khalifa dictatorship is extremely isolated, highly unpopular and faces constant pressure from the pro-democracy majority. To bolster their vassal rulers, Washington has increased its military sales to the tiny statelet from $400 million between 1993-2000 to $1.4 billion in the subsequent decade. Washington has increased its sales and military training program in direct proportion to the growth of democratic discontent, resulting in the geometrical growth of political prisoners.

Iraq: War, Occupation, and the Killing Fields of a Jailhouse Democracy

The US invasion and occupation of Iraq led to the slaughter of nearly 1.5 million Iraqis (mostly civilians, non-combatants) at a cost of $1.5 trillion dollars and 4,801 US military deaths. In 2006 the US engineered ‘elections’ led to the installation of the Maliki regime, buttressed by US arms, mercenaries, advisers and bases. According to a recent study for the Congressional Research Office (February 2014), by Kenneth Kilzman, there are 16,000 US military personnel and “contractors” currently in Iraq. Over 3,500 US military contractors in the Office of Security Cooperation bolster the corrupt Maliki police state. The jailhouse democracy has been supplied with US missiles and drones and over $10 billion dollars in military assistance :this includes $2.5 billion in aid and $7.9 billion sales between 2005 – 2013. For 2014 -2015 Malaki has requested $15 billion in weapons, including 36 US F-16 combat aircraft and scores of Apache attack helicopters. In 2013 the Malaki regime registered 8,000 political deaths resulting from its internal war.

Iraq is a crucial center for US control of oil, the Gulf and as a launch pad to attack Iran. While Maliki makes ‘gestures’ toward Iran, its role as an advanced link in the US imperial gulag defines its real ‘function’ in the Gulf region.

Yemen: The Desert Military Outpost for the American Gulag

Yemen is a costly military outpost for Saudi despotism and US power on the Arabian Peninsula. According to a study, Yemen: Background and US Relations by Jeremy Sharp for the Congressional Research Service (2014), the US has supplied $1.3 billion in military aid to Yemen between 2009-2014. Saudi Arabia donated $3.2 billion in 2012 to bolster the Saleh dictatorship in the face of a mass popular anti-dictatorial uprising. Washington engineered a transfer of power from Saleh to “President” Hadi and ensured his continuity by doubling military aid to keep the jails full and the resistance in check. According to the New York Times (6/31/13) Hadi was “a carry-over of dictator Saleh”. The continuity of a jailhouse democracy in Yemen is a crucial link between the Egypt-Israel-Jordan axis and the Saudi-Bahrain imperial gulag.

Jordan: Eternal Vassal and Mendicant Monarchy

Jordan’s despotic monarchy has been on the US payroll for over a half century. Recently it has served as a torture center for kidnapped victims seized by US Special Forces engaged in the “rendition” program. Jordan has collaborated with Israel in assaulting and arresting Palestinians in Jordan engaged in the freedom struggle. Currently Jordan along with Turkey serves as a training and weapons depot for NATO backed mercenary terrorists invading Syria. For its collaboration with Israel, Washington and NATO, the corrupt jailhouse monarchy receives large scale long-term military and economic aid. The monarchy and its extended network of cronies, jailers and family, skim tens of millions of dollars in foreign aid, laundered in overseas accounts in London, Switzerland, Dubai and New York. According to a Congressional Research Service Report (January 27, 2014), US aid to the Jordanian royal dictatorship amounts to $660 million per year. An additional $150 million for military aid was channeled to the regime with the onset of the NATO intervention in Syria. The fund was directed to build-up the infrastructure around the Jordan-Syria border. In addition, Jordan serves as a major conduit for arms to terrorists attacking Syria: $340 million destined for “overseas contingencies” probably is channeled through Amman to arm the terrorists invading Syria. In October 2012, Jordan signed agreements with the US allowing a large contingent of Special Forces to establish airfields and bases to supply and train terrorists.

Turkey: A Loyal Vassal State with Regional Ambitions

As the southern military bulwark of NATO, on Russia’s frontier, Turkey has been on the US payroll for over 66 years. According to a recent study by James Zanotti Turkey – US Defense Co-Operation: Prospects and Challenges (Congressional Research Service, April 8, 2011) in exchange for bolstering the military power of Turkey’s “jailhouse democracy”, the US secured a major military presence including a huge air base in Incirlik a major operational center housing 1,800 US military personnel. Turkey collaborated with the US invasion and occupation of Afghanistan and supported the NATO bombing of Libya. Today Turkey is the most important military operational center for jihadist terrorists invading Syria. Despite President Erdoğan’s periodic demagogic nationalist bombast, the US empire builders continue to have access to Turkish bases and transport corridors for its wars, occupations and interventions in the Middle East and South and Central Asia. In exchange the US has stationed missile defense systems and vastly increased arms sales, so-called “security assistance”. Between 2006 – 2009 US military sales exceeded $22 billion dollars. In 2013-14, tensions between Turkey and the US increased as Erdoğan moved to purge the state of the Gulenists, a US backed fifth column, which permeated the Turkish state and used its position to support closer collaboration with Israel and US military interests.

Conclusion

The expansion of the US Empire throughout North Africa and the Middle East has been built around arming and financing vassal states to serve as military outposts of the empire. These vassal regimes, ruled by dictatorial monarchies, and authoritarian military and civilian rulers, rely on force and violence to sustain their rule. The US has supplied the weapons, advisers, and financing allowing them to rule. The US arc of imperial military bases stretching from Egypt through Israel, Turkey, Jordan, Yemen, Iraq , Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, is protected by a chain of prison camps containing tens of thousands of political prisoners.

The US engagement, its pervasive presence throughout the region, is accompanied by a chain of jailhouse democracies and dictatorships. Contrary to liberal and conservative policy pundits and academics, US policy for over 50 years has actively sought out, installed and protected bloody tyrants who have pillaged the public treasury, concentrated wealth, surrendered sovereignty and underdeveloped their economies.

Pro-Israel academics at prestigious US universities have systematically distorted the structural bases of violence, authoritarianism and corruption in the Islamic world: blaming the victims, the Turkish and Arab people, and ignoring the role of US empire builders in financing and arming the authoritarian civilian and military rulers and absolutist monarchies and their corrupt military, judicial and police officials.

Contrary to the mendacious tomes published by the prestigious University presses and written mostly by highly respected pro-Israel political propagandists, the remaking of the Middle East depends on the strength of the democratic currents in Islamic society. They are found in the student movements, among the trade unionists and unemployed, the nationalist intellectuals and Islamic and secular forces who oppose the US Empire for very practical and obvious reasons. Along with Israel the US is the main organizer of the vast chain of political prison camps that destroy the most creative and dynamic forces in the region. Greater Arab vassalage provokes the periodic explosion of a vibrant democratic culture and movement; unfortunately it also results in greater US military aid and presence. The real clash of civilizations is between the democratic aspirations of the Eastern popular classes and the deeply embedded authoritarianism of Euro-American- Israeli imperialism.

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Professor James Petras, Boiling Frogs Post contributing analyst, is the author of more than 62 books published in 29 languages, and over 600 articles in professional journals, including the American Sociological Review, British Journal of Sociology, Social Research, and Journal of Peasant Studies. He has a long history of commitment to social justice, working in particular with the Brazilian Landless Workers Movement for 11 years. He writes a monthly column for the Mexican newspaper, La Jornada, and previously, for the Spanish daily, El Mundo. Dr. Petras received his B.A. from Boston University and Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley. You can visit his website here.

Not All Lives are Equal-According to the Inhabitants of the Barbarically Civilized Nation

I rarely accept invitations for speaking arrangements. It is not my cup of tea. When I rarely do I insist in dividing my allocated time into 1/3 for speaking and 2/3 for Q & A. I don’t like canned speeches, but I happen to truly like lengthy Q & A sessions. Why? Because: It enables me to talk about what my audience really wants to hear about, it gives me a chance to get to know others’ points of view and perceptions, and let’s face it, it just makes the whole process less boring, more interactive, less predictable, thus more fun.

Two months ago, during one of my very rare speaking arrangements, the topics of discussion took many spontaneous turns and twists and ended up in the area of our wars- our never-ending, perpetual wars. Of course you know where I stand on that. And most likely you won’t be surprised to hear that not many people share my stand; at least not as bold and vehemently.  Most public figures who engage in public speaking know how to frame their talking points and answers very diplomatically so that they will get uniformed nods from their audience; at least most of them. And they do. I know the trick, and I know how it is done. But I never use it. Meaning, I do not engage in public speaking for the purpose of being liked and admired uniformly, and to play it safe. It is not me. In fact I do exactly the opposite, meaning, I actually try to push buttons, and as a result bring out the real inner thinking of my audiences.  So what if that makes me not-so-popular and not likely to be invited again? I ain’t running for public office!

Now that we have established my modus operandi when it comes to public speaking, let’s go back to my Q & A session from my latest ‘engagement.’

We began discussing our latest wars-our wars since September 11, 2001. One lady raised her hand and proposed that these wars were highly justified based on what took place on 9/11. After all, she said, we were attacked, thus, we had to defend ourselves.

I provided her with the conservative estimate of our civilian casualties in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Yemen. She responded to that: ‘Don’t take me wrong. I am sorry that these innocent people had to die, but we had to do what we had to do, and the loss of innocent people does not change this reality.’

I asked her: ‘Would you see the reverse as justified? Meaning, would you see it as justified when those people attack us in defending against our perpetual attacks on them, and as a result kill tens of thousands of our innocent people?’ She said: ‘But that is not the same. They are terrorists. We are not. Wars are not the same as terrorism.’

Basically, she was entering the many-times-argued ‘One man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter’ area. So I kept pushing, respectfully, until the real her began surfacing. She said: ‘What we are seeing is an inevitable clash. It is the clash of civilized democratic people with the barbaric third world countries’ inhabitants.’

And that, my friends, brings me to one of the macro topics we frequently discuss here at Boiling Frogs Post: Why don’t we see major backlash and protests in the face of our atrocious wars waged around the globe?

Sure. We can talk about how awful the media has been in framing, thus justifying our unjustifiable wars. We can discuss the fear-mongering factor being played by all our politicians and media outlets. We can talk about all that, but let’s talk about another factor that is rarely discussed: The Us versus them. The civilized vs the barbaric. The White vs Yellow or Olive or Black. The Christians vs the Muslims. The Superior  Westerners vs the Inferior Easterners or Southerners. The superiority complex that says not all lives are equal. The Exceptionalism that says we are far more superior, valuable and worthy of life and liberties.

I usually don’t cover the highly polarizing, and frequently misused notions of racism, sexism, religion-ism, classism, etc. Not because these factors and notions are not highly prevalent in our daily lives, including in our media, politics, education, and yes, foreign policy. But because there are only so many topics and areas I can possibly cover, it is due to not wanting to get into one of those highly polarized discussion areas where tempers and biases and hatred easily boil to the top, and also it is due to not considering myself an expert in sociology and or psychology. All that said, this topic keeps coming up. In one form or another. It ends up being one of those gigantic elephants in the room. So, let’s go ahead and discuss it, and then, face it.

The over a million deaths caused by our Vietnam War did not mean anything compared to 50,000+ deaths of our soldiers. Was that war in self-defense? No. But, that doesn’t matter. Was it a justified war? Surely not, but that doesn’t matter. Who were those people anyway? They were not like us. They didn’t look like us. They didn’t eat like us, and didn’t talk like us.

The estimates of killed and wounded in Hiroshima (150,000) and Nagasaki (75,000) are overly conservative. The atomic bomb we dropped in Hiroshima alone was the equivalent of 20,000 tons of TNT. Was it justified to use the worst kind of weapons of mass destructions and killing hundreds of thousands of civilians, and affecting their offspring to come? No. Should it be categorized as a type of genocide and war atrocity? Yes. Do most people in our nation see it as such? No. We can go around the world and point fingers at nations who may or may not possess WMD, and begin bombing the hell out of them. On the other hand, it is perfectly okay for us to have the world’s biggest WMD cache, and be the only nation that has repeatedly used WMD, and atrociously killed hundreds of thousands using them. Why? Because we consider ourselves civilized. However barbarically. Even when we engage in the most barbaric atrocities, we are still civilized- barbarically civilized, that is.

Here is an example of how we can be Barbarically Civilized, or Civilized Barbarically:

The Volume of American bombing in Vietnam exceeded the 2.7 million tons of bombs dropped by the Allied Forces in all theaters during World War II. The estimated war casualties range from 195,000 to 430,000 civilian war deaths. The lowest total estimate is 1,234,000 military and civilian deaths from 1965 to 1974.

It is a fact that we, the world civilized super power nation, have been the world’s most atrocious WMD possessor and user:

In Korea over a three-year period, U.S./UN forces flew 1,040,708 sorties and dropped 386,037 tons of bombs and 32,357 tons of napalm. If one counts all types of airborne ordnance, including rockets and machine-gun ammunition, the total tonnage comes to 698,000 tons

For South Vietnam, the figure is 19 million gallons of defoliant dropped on an area comprising 20 percent of South Vietnam—some 6 million acres. In an even briefer period, between 1969 and 1973, 539,129 tons of bombs were dropped in Cambodia, largely by B-52s, of which 257,465 tons fell in the last six months of the war (as compared to 160,771 tons on Japan from 1942–1945). The estimated toll of the dead, the majority civilian, is equally difficult to absorb: 2 to 3 million in Korea; 2 to 4 million in Vietnam.

Three million tons were dropped on Laos, exceeding the total for Germany and Japan by both the U.S. and Great Britain.

Did Vietnam or Laos attack our nation, or even threaten to attack our nation? No. Does it matter? No. Why not? Because our super government of our super civilized nation knows best. Because let’s face it: who are these people anyway? They are yellow, and most of them are Buddhist or something like that, they eat too much rice …and they are not civilized like us. As simple as that. So the massive civilian casualty number doesn’t bother us; it doesn’t move us. We may be ‘sorry,’ and that is, later, a little sorry, that is, but that’s all.

That brings us to olive colored people. The barbaric Muslims. The Arabic speaking third world Easterners. The Middle Easterners. We have killed massive numbers of them as well, and we continue killing:

The first household survey that appeared was published in The Lancet in October 2004, measuring the war-related mortality in the war's first 18 months. The researchers--mainly epidemiologists from Johns Hopkins School of Public Health and medical personnel in Iraq--estimated 98,000 "excess deaths" due to war.

The second household survey, conducted by the Hopkins scientists again, was completed in June 2006 and published four months later in The Lancet. Its findings: 650,000 people (civilians and fighters) died as a result of the war in Iraq.

More conservative (biased?) reports estimate that Afghanistan and Iraq wars have killed 132,000 Civilians.

Did Iraq have anything to do with 9/11? Of course not. Did Iraq in any way threaten us? Nope. Then, why did we go invade them a few months after 9/11? Who cares! They are olive colored, most of them have beards, they speak a language that sounds like a terrorist language, they are Muslims … and all that make them: Barbaric. Not civilized like us. Why should we be moved by tens of thousands of their children and women being blown to bits? Really? As that woman said during my last speaking event: ‘Let’s face it, they are not like us. They are barbaric terrorists.

A few days ago, as I was researching, I came across a very-well written editorial on this topic. To my shock the source was none other than the awful Washington Post. As you know I do not cite anything from propaganda publications such as the Washington Post. In fact, we even call it a boycott here at Boiling Frogs Post. Maybe it was one of those rarities buried in the back pages somewhere. Maybe an aberration? Whatever it was, I was impressed, and I am going to quote a few excerpts:

Even civilian atrocities tend to fade quickly from view, or else become rallying points for the accused troops. My Lai, where about 400 Vietnamese were murdered by a U.S. Army unit in 1968, at first shocked the nation, but Americans quickly came to support Lt. William L. Calley Jr. — who was later found guilty of killing 22villagers — and the others involved. More recently, eight Marines were charged in the 2005 Haditha massacre in Iraq, and none has been convicted. (The last defendant’s trial started this past week.) Indeed, each atrocity that fails to alter public opinion piles on to further prove American indifference.

Why the American silence on our wars’ main victims? Our self-image, based on what cultural historian Richard Slotkin calls “the frontier myth” — in which righteous violence is used to subdue or annihilate the savages of whatever land we’re trying to conquer — plays a large role. For hundreds of years, the frontier myth has been one of America’s sturdiest national narratives.

When the challenges from communism in Korea and Vietnam appeared, we called on these cultural tropes to understand the U.S. mission overseas. The same was true for Iraq and Afghanistan, with the news media and politicians frequently portraying Islamic terrorists as frontier savages. By framing each of these wars as a battle to civilize a lawless culture, we essentially typecast the local populations as the Indians of our North American conquest. As the foreign policy maven Robert D. Kaplanwrote on the Wall Street Journal op-ed page in 2004, “The red Indian metaphor is one with which a liberal policy nomenklatura may be uncomfortable, but Army and Marine field officers have embraced it because it captures perfectly the combat challenge of the early 21st century.”

Politicians tend to speak in broader terms, such as defending Western values, or simply refer to resistance fighters as terrorists, the 21st-century word for savages. Remember the military’s code name for the raid of Osama bin Laden’s compound? It was Geronimo.

This well-written editorial piece makes a very troubling and reality-based point: Our apathy towards mass civilian casualties and atrocities caused by our nation is mainly due to a strong sense of Superiority and Exceptionalism. We see it with our aggression and atrocities around the world. It is the barbaric tribal black people in Africa. Or it is the yellow savage communist Asians. Or the bearded olive terrorist Muslim Arabs. We see it in our domestic events as well. Does the media cover a murdered black child as extensively and dramatically as a blue-eyed blond one like Jan Benet Ramsey? Of course not. Not all murdered or abused children are equal. Does our media cover the Palestinian children killed by Israeli terrorism as in-depth and extensively as the Israeli children who fall victim to the terrorism by the other side? Of course not. Not all destructions and deaths caused by terrorism and savagery are equal.

That lady whose button I pushed is not alone. Unfortunately many, even if subconsciously, share this arrogant sense of superiority. Our majority believes our nation to be a civilized one, even if barbarically civilized. We see our barbarism justified, and do not consider all lives and liberties equal. And as long as this remains the case we shall not see the needed logical reaction and opposition to the atrocities committed around the globe and at home in our name, and in our behalf.

# # # #

Sibel Edmonds is the Publisher & Editor of Boiling Frogs Post and the author of the Memoir Classified Woman: The Sibel Edmonds Story. She is the recipient of the 2006 PEN Newman's Own First Amendment Award for her “commitment to preserving the free flow of information in the United States in a time of growing international isolation and increasing government secrecy” Ms. Edmonds has a MA in Public Policy and International Commerce from George Mason University, a BA in Criminal Justice and Psychology from George Washington University.

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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Found at Last: After Searching for 10 Years, the Iraqi WMD Have Finally Been Found – in Syria!

The World Might Be Finally Losing the Stars in Their Eyes About US Foreign Policy

Secretary of State John Kerry: “There is no doubt that Saddam al-Assad has crossed the red line. … Sorry, did I just say ‘Saddam’?”

A US drone has just taken a photo of Mullah Omar riding on a motorcycle through the streets of Damascus. 1

So what do we have as the United States refuses to rule out an attack on Syria and keeps five warships loaded with missiles in the eastern Mediterranean? [Read more...]

Geopolitics with Ryan Dawson-“Search & Destroy: The Rape of Iraq”

Ryan Dawson Presents Pepe Escobar

GPInvestigative journalist and geopolitical analyst Pepe Escobar joins us to explain what really happened with the so called "surge" in Iraq, how the sectarian violence was fostered to divide and conquer, and what a time bomb Iraq still may be. How did the pentagon and press turn 9/11 into a psychological hammer to dehumanize and demonize Iraqis? Is the media on Syria any better than it was with Iraq?

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This site depends exclusively on readers’ support. Please help us continue by SUBSCRIBING, and by ordering our EXCLUSIVE BFP DVDs.

Corbett Report- Sibel Edmonds on Gladio Part III: Turkey-Iraq, the Hood Event, Israel & Gladio B

Sibel Edmonds of BoilingFrogsPost.com joins us for the third part of our series on Gladio B, the NATO-directed effort to radicalize, enable and protect Islamic terrorists to further their own geopolitical ends. In this edition we discuss the Hood Event, the Gladio A / B transition, Israel’s role in funding both sides of the regional conflict, and how the Kurds have been used and abused by every would-be regional power in the area. Sibel also takes questions on Ayman al-Zawahiri and begins to discuss Huseyin Baybasin (aka “Europe’s Pablo Escobar”) and the NATO-protected heroin operations in Europe.

 

 

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To listen to the previous installments in this series: CLICK HERE FOR PART ONE and CLICK HERE FOR PART TWO