The Deep State Goes to War with President-Elect, Using Unverified Claims, as Democrats Cheer 2

By Glenn Greenwald

The Intercept

Dwight Eisenhower delivered his farewell address after serving two terms as U.S. president; the five-star general chose to warn Americans of this specific threat to democracy: “In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.” That warning was issued prior to the decadelong escalation of the Vietnam War, three more decades of Cold War mania, and the post-9/11 era, all of which radically expanded that unelected faction’s power even further.

This is the faction that is now engaged in open warfare against the duly elected and already widely disliked president-elect, Donald Trump. They are using classic Cold War dirty tactics and the defining ingredients of what has until recently been denounced as “Fake News.”

Their most valuable instrument is the U.S. media, much of which reflexively reveres, serves, believes, and sides with hidden intelligence officials. And Democrats, still reeling from their unexpected and traumatic election loss as well as a systemic collapse of their party, seemingly divorced further and further from reason with each passing day, are willing — eager — to embrace any claim, cheer any tactic, align with any villain, regardless of how unsupported, tawdry and damaging those behaviors might be.

The serious dangers posed by a Trump presidency are numerous and manifest. There are a wide array of legitimate and effective tactics for combatting those threats: from bipartisan congressional coalitions and constitutional legal challenges to citizen uprisings and sustained and aggressive civil disobedience. All of those strategies have periodically proven themselves effective in times of political crisis or authoritarian overreach.

But cheering for the CIA and its shadowy allies to unilaterally subvert the U.S. election and impose its own policy dictates on the elected president is both warped and self-destructive. Empowering the very entities that have produced the most shameful atrocities and systemic deceit over the last six decades is desperation of the worst kind. Demanding that evidence-free, anonymous assertions be instantly venerated as Truth — despite emanating from the very precincts designed to propagandize and lie — is an assault on journalism, democracy, and basic human rationality. And casually branding domestic adversaries who refuse to go along as traitors and disloyal foreign operatives is morally bankrupt and certain to backfire on those doing it.

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Keith Preston: Intel services seek to cause ‘friction between US and Russia’ Reply

Press TV. Listen here.

The American intelligence community is seeking to cause “friction” between the United States and Russia as President-elect Donald Trump has signaled willingness to improve relations with Moscow, says a political analyst.

Keith Preston, the chief editor of AttacktheSystem.com, made the remarks on Wednesday in an interview with Press TV when asked about new legislation introduced in the Senate to impose sweeping new sanctions on Russia.

Five Democrats and five Republicans unveiled the new punishments on Tuesday after the intelligence community concluded in a report that the Russian government had sought to influence the outcome of the November election through cyberhacking and a smear campaign, a claim that Trump and Moscow have both rejected.

“It’s extraordinarily foolish for the American Congress to try to impose any kind of sanctions on Russia on the grounds that Russia has supposedly interfered in the American election, that has not been proven,” Preston said.

“The intelligence services are trying to create a greater degree of friction between the United States and Russia, and the Democratic Party is going along with this, in part because they want to blame the Russians for their loss in the election,” he added.

The proposed legislation would solidify many of the sanctions President Barack Obama’s outgoing administration has imposed against Russia and limit Trump’s ability to improve relations with Moscow.

Preston said, “the intelligence services and the political establishment are trying to undermine (Trump)’s efforts to bring the United States closer to Russia,” adding, “they have allies in Congress, particularly in the Democratic Party” to help them achieve their goal.

He said one reason they do not want better ties with Russia is that “the military industrial complex wants to expand NATO right up the Russia’s border and they also want to circle Russia with military bases in Central Asia.”

“This is part of a wider program of establishing and maintaining the American hegemony in that particular region,” the analyst added.

The new sanctions against Russia include visa bans and financial asset freezes against those the US intelligence claimed were behind the cyberattacks against US Democratic organizations and officials. The measure, called “Countering Russian Hostilities Act of 2017,” would also target Russia’s vast energy sector and companies that invest in or help develop its civil nuclear projects.

 

US Intel Agencies Try to Strong-Arm Trump into War With Russia Reply

Mike Whitney

Counterpunch

Powerful elites are using the credibility of the US Intelligence agencies to demonize Russia and prepare the country for war. This is the real meaning of the “Russia hacking” story which, as yet, has not produced any hard evidence of Russian complicity.

Last week’s 25-page report, that was released by the Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, illustrates to what extent intelligence is being “fixed around the policy”.  Just as the CIA generated false information related to Weapons of Mass Destruction to soften public resistance to war with Iraq, so too, the spurious allegations in the DNI’s politically-motivated report are designed to depict Russia as a growing threat to US national security. The timing of the report has less to do with the election of Donald Trump as President than it does with critical developments in Syria where the Russian military has defeated US-proxies in Syria’s industrial hub, Aleppo, rolling back Washington’s 15-year War of Terror and derailing the imperialist plan to control vital resources and pipeline corridors across the Middle East and Central Asia. Russia has become the main obstacle to Washington achieving its strategic vision of pivoting to Asia and maintaining its dominant role into the next century. The Intelligence Community has been coerced into compromising its credibility to incite fear of Russia and to advance the geopolitical ambitions of deep state powerbrokers.

he “Russia hacking” flap shows how far the Intel agencies have veered from their original mandate, which is to impartially gather and analyze information that may be vital to US national security. As we have seen in the last two weeks, the leaders of these organizations feel free to offer opinions on  issues that clearly conflict with those of the new President-elect. Trump has stated repeatedly that he wants to reduce tensions and reset relations with Russia, but that policy is being sabotaged by members of the intelligence community, particularly CIA Director John Brennan who appeared just last week on PBS Newshour with Judy Woodruff. Here’s an excerpt from the interview:

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Overthrowing other people’s governments: The Master List Reply

Q: Why will there never be a coup d’état in Washington?

A: Because there’s no American embassy there.

By William Blum

The Empire Report

  • China 1949 to early 1960s
  • Albania 1949-53
  • East Germany 1950s
  • Iran 1953 *
  • Guatemala 1954 *
  • Costa Rica mid-1950s
  • Syria 1956-7
  • Egypt 1957
  • Indonesia 1957-8
  • British Guiana 1953-64 *
  • Iraq 1963 *
  • North Vietnam 1945-73
  • Cambodia 1955-70 *
  • Laos 1958 *, 1959 *, 1960 *
  • Ecuador 1960-63 *
  • Congo 1960 *
  • France 1965
  • Brazil 1962-64 *
  • Dominican Republic 1963 *
  • Cuba 1959 to present
  • Bolivia 1964 *
  • Indonesia 1965 *
  • Ghana 1966 *
  • Chile 1964-73 *
  • Greece 1967 *
  • Costa Rica 1970-71
  • Bolivia 1971 *
  • Australia 1973-75 *
  • Angola 1975, 1980s
  • Zaire 1975
  • Portugal 1974-76 *
  • Jamaica 1976-80 *
  • Seychelles 1979-81
  • Chad 1981-82 *
  • Grenada 1983 *
  • South Yemen 1982-84
  • Suriname 1982-84
  • Fiji 1987 *
  • Libya 1980s
  • Nicaragua 1981-90 *
  • Panama 1989 *
  • Bulgaria 1990 *
  • Albania 1991 *
  • Iraq 1991
  • Afghanistan 1980s *
  • Somalia 1993
  • Yugoslavia 1999-2000 *
  • Ecuador 2000 *
  • Afghanistan 2001 *
  • Venezuela 2002 *
  • Iraq 2003 *
  • Haiti 2004 *
  • Somalia 2007 to present
  • Honduras 2009
  • Libya 2011 *
  • Syria 2012
  • Ukraine 2014 *

Keith Preston: Obama wants to prevent close ties between Trump, Putin Reply

Listen here.

The administration of US President Barack Obama is trying to muddy the waters with Russia before the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump, says an American political analyst.

Keith Preston, the director of the attackthesystem.com made the remarks with regards to Obama’s reported plans to introduce new sanctions against Russia.

Washington is set to announce measures designed to retaliate against what it considers Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election to allegedly help Trump with his victory, CNN reported Wednesday, citing government officials.

“Well, what this seems to be is a case of domestic partisan politics in the United States intruding into American foreign policy and international relations,” Preston told Press TV on Thursday.

Preston said the presidential race between Trump and his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton as “one of the most contentious” votes in the US history and the political fallout was inevitable.

“Hillary Clinton actually won the popular vote, Donald Trump was elected by to the electoral votes,” he said, noting that the Democratic Party was looking for a scapegoat.

Pointing to the Obama administration’s “unsubstantiated” claims that Moscow interfered in the vote, Preston predicted that the allegations would continue until Trump takes office on January 20.

“Given that the Democratic Party is till the ruling party for the time being… it appears that the Democratic Party is trying to retaliate against Russia, on the belief that Russia cost them the election,” the analyst explained.

“There are a lot of foreign policy hawks in the Obama administration with a very negative view of Russia,” he added.

Unlike the current administration, however, Trump and his incoming administration have taken a reconciliatory line with Moscow.

“So it maybe that various elements in the American government are trying to retaliate or act against Russia before Trump takes office,” Preston argued.

Economic sanctions against Moscow were originally introduced in March 2014, after the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea joined Russia following a referendum.

The new sanctions are going to be a “token gesture” more than anything else, Preston said.

According to Obama, the CIA and other US intelligence agencies are in possession of evidence that shows Russian President Vladimir Putin supervised the hacks, which targeted the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and John Podesta, a top aide to Clinton.

Putin has categorically denied Washington’s hacking claims, calling on Obama and his administration to either provide evidence or stop their accusations.

Keith Preston: US unremittingly aligned with Israel on Palestinian issue Reply

Press TV. Listen Here.

The United States has protected Israel from UN action and international criticism for decades, despite Tel Aviv’s violation of a broad range of international laws, and President-elect Donald Trump will maintain that cynical policy, an American political analyst in Virginia says.

“The United States has always been unremittingly aligned with Israel and when comes to the United Nations, rarely has the United States ever broken with Israel on any issues in the region, certainly when it comes to the Palestinian issue,” said Keith Preston, the chief editor of AttacktheSystem.com.

“Donald Trump will be continuing what previous presidents have done,” Preston told Press TV on Thursday.

“It was predicted, even during the campaign, that Donald Trump will have a very pro-Israel position and he seems to be following up on that,” he added.

On Thursday, Trump urged the outgoing Obama administration to veto a UN Security Council draft resolution that calls for an immediate halt to illegal settlement building on the occupied Palestinian land.

“The resolution being considered at the United Nations Security Council regarding Israel should be vetoed,” the incoming Republican president said in a statement.

“As the United States has long maintained, peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians will only come through direct negotiations between the parties, and not through the imposition of terms by the United Nations,” he said.

The UN resolution calls for “the cessation of all Israeli settlement activities is essential for salvaging the two-state solution,” stating that the activities are dangerously imperiling” and threatening the viability of any future Palestinian state in the occupied West Bank.

Last week, Trump nominated David Friedman, a hardline Zionist, as US ambassador to Israel, likely paving the way toward a controversial decision to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem al-Quds.

Over half a million Israelis live in more than 230 illegal settlements built since the 1967 Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem al-Quds.

All Israeli settlements are illegal under international law. Tel Aviv has defied international calls to stop the settlements expansion in the occupied Palestinian territories.

Trump To Nominate Extreme Militant John Bolton As State Department’s No. 2 Reply

If Bolton makes it in, the neocons’ strategy will likely be to have him play the role of Wolfowtiz to Mattis’ Rumsfeld and Pence’s Cheney. Bolton will try to sell the other two on war with Iran and try to get them to start whispering sweet nothings in Trump’s ear. Hopefully, Trump is not as foolish or stupid as Bush, and would avoid heeding their counsel. If nothing else, maybe Putin could be a restraining force. Trump’s lack of Russophobia is one of his best assets.

By Jessica Schulberg and Ryan Grim

Huffington Post

WASHINGTON ― President-elect Donald Trump will nominate John Bolton to be the nation’s No. 2 diplomat, handling day-to-day operations at the State Department, according to NBC’s Andrea Mitchell and confirmed to HuffPost by a source close to the transition.

Bolton, who had been on Trump’s short list for secretary of state at one point, is among the most hawkish members of the Republican foreign policy community, a bellicose enemy of Russia and Iran.

He is a former acting U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, but served less than two years, as Democrats banded together to block his long-term appointment. His time at the U.N. was marked by a rapid uptick in anti-American sentiment among the global diplomatic community. Bolton remains one of the most disliked foreign policy operators on the world stage.

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Keith Preston: US sends more forces to escalate insurgency in Syria Reply

PressTV. Listen here.

The success of the Syrian armed forces in fighting the Daesh (ISIL) terrorist group has prompted the United States to escalate the militancy in Syria, in an effort to undermine the government of  President Bashar al-Assad, says a political commentator.

US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said on Saturday that Washington will deploy approximately 200 additional US forces in Syria to support the ongoing campaign to retake the Syriancity of Raqqah from the Daesh terrorist group.

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The Fourth Generation vs. an Alliance of States Reply

I generally agree with Bill’s analysis here, although I’m personally rooting for the Fourth Generation forces.

“…we need a new Triple Alliance or Quintuple Alliance, and here as so often in grand strategy context is important. It is, again, the need for all states to work together against Fourth Generation, non-state entities that wage war. The alliance is a means, not an end.

The end is that whenever 4GW manifests itself, wherever it does so, all states work together to defeat it. The power of Fourth Generation entities, or at least some of them, at the moral level of war is so great that, even with all the states in the world against them, beating them will not be easy. Let me say it once more: what is at stake in the 21st century is the state system itself. If events remain on their current course, by the year 2100 the state will probably be just a memory..”

By William S. Lind

Traditional Right

The election of Donald Trump opens the door to change and reform in many areas. The most important, in terms of our country’s future, is grand strategy and foreign policy (the latter, understood correctly, is a subset of the former). The United States needs a grand strategy aimed at preserving the state system.

Our present grand strategy was conceived in a world of states in conflict with each other. Its purpose is to make America dominant over all other states. The U.S. is not the first state to attempt this. Like its predecessors, it is failing. No state has ever been powerful enough to establish the “universal monarchy”, as it was once known. Attempts to do so have always resulted in overreach, then fall. Remember, Portugal once ruled half the world.

But the most important thing is not that we reduce our goals to match our power in the world of conflict between states. The most important thing is that we realize Fourth Generation war poses so serious a threat to the whole state system that conflict between states has become obsolete. We need an alliance of all states against Fourth Generation entities. If we and other Great Powers, especially Russia and China, continue to squabble among ourselves, the 21st century is likely to witness the end of the whole state system. Mere anarchy will be loosed upon the world.

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Keith Preston: US Extension of ISA to Serve Israel’s Regional Interests: American Analyst Reply

Tasnim News Agency

پرتسون

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – An American political analyst said the US Senate vote to extend the Iran Sanctions Act (ISA) is “clearly a violation” of the JCPOA, the July 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers, adding that the move aims to serve Israel’s interests in the region.

“The vote by the US Senate to grant the President the authority to renew the sanctions against Iran for another 10 year period is clearly a violation of the original nuclear agreement, in which the United States promised to begin lifting the sanctions pending Iran’s compliance with the terms of the agreement,” Keith Preston, the chief editor and director of attackthesystem.com, from Virginia told the Tasnim News Agency in an interview.

He added, “The ambition of US policy makers is not merely the control of Iran’s nuclear capabilities, but to oppose Iran as an autonomous Middle Eastern nation that refuses to be incorporated into the Washington Consensus. It must also be recognized that the political class in the United States is enthralled to the domestic Israel Lobby, which is in turn closely aligned with Israel’s Likud Party and the Netanyahu regime. The ambition of the Israel Lobby is the elimination of Iran as a regional competitor to Israel. The sanctions are a means towards that particular end.”

Following is the full text of the Tasnim’s interview with Preston:

Tasnim: As you know, the US Senate on Thursday passed a 10-year extension of sanctions against Iran, sending the measure to the White House for President Barack Obama to sign into law. Members of Congress and administration officials have said the renewal of the Iran Sanctions Act (ISA) would not violate the nuclear agreement with Iran reached last year. Do you think so? What might the future hold as the move by the GOP-controlled House came after Republican Donald Trump won the election last month?

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Trump and the Neoconservatives 4

By Jon Basil Utley

The American Conservative

Image result for john bolton

Even before the Iraq War, John Bolton was a leading brain behind the neoconservatives’ war-and-conquest agenda. Long ago I wrote about him, in “John Bolton and U.S. Lawlessness,” “The Bush administration’s international lawlessness did not come from nowhere. Its intellectual foundations were laid long before 9/11 by neoconservatives.” I quoted Bolton, “It is a big mistake to for us to grant any validity to international law … because over the long term, the goal of those who think that it really means anything are those who want to constrict the United States.” In fact I set up a web page, the John Bolton File, containing various links about him and the neocons.

Nearly all of Donald Trump’s appointments to his transition team are very encouraging. Indeed, I have known many of them for years. But he could undermine his whole agenda by allowing neocons back into their former staffing and leadership role over Republican foreign policy. The New York Times reported how many are now scrambling to get back into their old dominant positions. And now National Review, which supported all the disasters in Iraq, has come out to promote Bolton for secretary of state.

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Presidential candidate Clinton says removing Assad in Syria is No. 1 priority 1

Reuters

Syria, Russia, and the American Candidates: Scott Horton Gives Us the Scoop Reply

A must listen interview with Scott Horton by Tom Woods that provides a comprehensive overview of the situation in Syria, US-Russia relations, and where the presidential candidates really stand on these questions. Listen here.

The situation in Syria is dangerous and volatile, with the potential for an American conflict with Russia very real. Scott Horton helps us evaluate what the two major candidates have had to say about this critically important subject.

About the Guest

Scott Horton, managing director of the Libertarian Institute, is the host of Antiwar Radio on KPFK 90.7 FM in Los Angeles, and Opinion Editor of Antiwar.com. The Scott Horton Show features daily interviews on foreign policy from a libertarian perspective.

U.S. and Britain Pledge to Send Planes, Troops and Tanks to Eastern Europe Reply

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg Presser
Olivier Hoslet—EPA North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg gives a press conference ahead of the Defense Ministers Council at Alliance headquarters in Brussels, Belgium, 25 Oct.2016.

It will be the biggest build up of NATO forces since the end of the Cold War

NATO allies including the U.S., Britain and Canada pledged Wednesday to deploy forces, tanks, jets and artillery in Eastern Europe amid escalating tensions with Russia.

Following a NATO defense ministers meeting in Brussels, Britain announced it would send fighter jets to Romania in 2017, while the U.S. promised tanks, artillery and more than 900 troops to Poland, Reuters reports. The U.K., Germany, Canada and other allies had also committed to contribute to a 4,000-strong ground force in the Baltic states and Eastern Europe, which aims to check Russian belligerence in the region.

Speaking at a press conference, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said the reinforcement would be the biggest build up of NATO forces since the end of the Cold War.

NATO accuses Moscow of continuing to support pro-Russian rebels in Ukraine following the annexation of the Crimean peninsula in 2014, and the alliance believes Russia has stationed around 330,000 troops close to its western border.

Stoltenberg said the build up of troops was a measured response to Moscow’s actions. “This month alone, Russia has deployed nuclear-capable Iskander missiles to Kaliningrad and suspended a weapons-grade plutonium agreement with the United States,” he said according to Reuters.

The announcement came as Russian warships sailing through the English Channel, believed to be on their way to Syria, withdrew a request to stop to refuel in Spain amid international opposition, the BBC reports.

At a July summit in Warsaw, NATO said it expected to deploy four battalions by early 2017. “I am pleased to confirm that we are on track. This Alliance does what it says. And we deliver on our promises,” Stoltenberg told reporters.

A 40,000-strong rapid-reaction force would support the four battalions, with follow-on forces on hand if necessary.

[Reuters]

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Washington’s foreign policy elite breaks with Obama over Syrian bloodshed Reply

Regardless of who the next President is, I suspect we are going to miss Obama eventually. Whatever his limitations, his performance on foreign policy has probably been as good as any US President’s is going to be.

By Greg Jaffe

Washington Post

There is one corner of Washington where Donald Trump’s scorched-earth presidential campaign is treated as a mere distraction and where bipartisanship reigns. In the rarefied world of the Washington foreign policy establishment, President Obama’s departure from the White House — and the possible return of a more conventional and hawkish Hillary Clinton — is being met with quiet relief.

The Republicans and Democrats who make up the foreign policy elite are laying the groundwork for a more assertive American foreign policy, via a flurry of reports shaped by officials who are likely to play senior roles in a potential Clinton White House.

It is not unusual for Washington’s establishment to launch major studies in the final months of an administration to correct the perceived mistakes of a president or influence his successor. But the bipartisan nature of the recent recommendations, coming at a time when the country has never been more polarized, reflects a remarkable consensus among the foreign policy elite.

This consensus is driven by a broad-based backlash against a president who has repeatedly stressed the dangers of overreach and the need for restraint, especially in the Middle East. “There’s a widespread perception that not being active enough or recognizing the limits of American power has costs,” said Philip Gordon, a senior foreign policy adviser to Obama until 2015. “So the normal swing is to be more interventionist.”

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The last to understand the collapse of an empire are those who live within it 1

This is an interesting question to reflection on: What does it mean for the future of anarchist movements given that the center of world power is slowly shifting from the US-NATO-Israeli-Saudi-Sunni axis to the BRICS-Shia-Mercosur axis?

By Jeff Thomas
Ron Paul Liberty Report

Throughout history, political, financial, and military leaders have sought to create empires. Westerners often think of ancient Rome as the first empire. Later, other empires formed for a time. Spain became an empire, courtesy of its Armada, its conquest of the New World, and the gold and silver extracted from the West. Great Britain owned the 19th century but lost its empire due largely to costly wars. The US took over in the 20th century and, like Rome, rose as a republic, with minimal central control, but is now crumbling under its own governmental weight.

Invariably, the last people to understand the collapse of an empire are those who live within it. As a British subject, I remember my younger years, when, even though the British Empire was well and truly over, many of my fellow Brits were still behaving in a pompous manner as though British “superiority” still existed. Not so, today. (You can only pretend for so long.)

But this does suggest that those who live within the present empire—the US—will be the last to truly understand that the game is all but over. Americans seem to be hopeful that the dramatic decline is a temporary setback from which they will rebound.

 

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