Colson Whitehead’s follow-up to his Pulitzer-winning The Underground Railroad is The Nickel Boys, a historical novel about two black teenagers, Elwood and Turner, and their time at the Nickel Academy in the early 1960s.
The academy is a fictional version of the Dozier School for Boys, an infamous Florida reformatory that operated for more than 100 years. In 2014, researchers began finding unmarked graves on the property.
Elwood is smart and eager to please. His favorite album is a recording of Martin Luther King speeches. He’s college-bound when he hitches a ride in a stolen car, is arrested, and gets sent to Nickel. He quickly discovers that well-manicured grounds hide the ugly reality of brutal corporal punishment, rape, and murder.
Elwood’s best friend at Nickel, Turner, is a runaway who sees the world as a con job. “In here and out there are the same,” he says, “but in here no one has to act fake anymore.” It’s a conundrum for the boys: If the rule of law is a genteel façade, then they have no hope of outside help. But if they submit to Nickel’s degradations to survive, it will ruin them.
The Nickel Boys is a short, haunting novel. Unlike The Underground Railroad, it includes no magical realism, which is to the point. Elwood and Turner are as powerless to wish Nickel away as we are to deny the truth still being discovered under the real-life Dozier School’s green lawns.
from Latest – Reason.com https://ift.tt/3716h6e
Last night we heard some knucklehead on the War Channel (CNN) braying about Ukraine as a vitally important “ally and strategic partner”. The implication, of course, was that the Donald’s attempted squeeze play on its new President was dangerously undermining national security.
What unadulterated tommyrot!
The safety and security of the American homeland has absolutely nothing to do with it. That’s because Ukraine is a no count, strategically irrelevant patch of earth that was long ago ruined by the old Soviet Union, and thereafter turned into an economic trainwreck by its own corrupt oligarchs – along with plenty of help from Washington interventionists.
The latter spent the post-Soviet years fomenting “color revolutions” and attempting to steer its politics toward the west and NATO membership. But when the Ukrainian people elected a pro-Russian president in 2010 and all efforts to bribe and bully him westward failed, Washington instigated, funded and instantaneously recognized an illegal putsch on the streets of Kiev in February 2014.
That blatant, unprovoked assault on a sovereign nation, in turn, set in motion a destructive civil war internally; a dangerous and utterly unnecessary politico-military confrontation with Russia on its own doorstep; and, now, a hysterical campaign by the House Dems and their Deep State allies to impeach a duly-elected American president for the sin of wading into the very cesspool of corruption that the Washington establishment itself foisted upon this hapless, $150 billion sliver of a failed state and crippled economy.
The latest dispatch from the Wall Street Journal on the stench wafting westward from Kiev reveals more about the rotten foundation of UkraineGate than its authors probably understood.
Burisma Holdings’ campaign to clean up its image in the West reached beyond the 2014 hiring of Hunter Biden, son of the then-U.S. vice president, to include other well-connected operatives in Washington, according to officials in both countries and government records.
The Ukrainian company, owned by tycoon Mykola Zlochevsky, also hired a lobbyist with close ties to then-Secretary of State John Kerry, as well as a consulting group founded by top officials in the Clinton administration that specialized in preparing former Soviet-bloc countries to join NATO (Blue Star Strategies).
Soon the efforts bore fruit. With the help of a New York-based lawyer, Mr. Zlochevsky’s U.S. consultants argued to Ukrainian prosecutors that criminal cases against the company should be closed because no laws had been broken.
Burisma later became a sponsor of a Washington think tank, the Atlantic Council, whose experts are often cited on energy and security policy in the former Soviet Union.
Simple translation: Zlochevsky was an ally, officeholder (minister of ecology and natural resources) and inner-circle thief in the ousted government of Viktor Yanukovych. He therefore needed to powder the pig fast and thoroughly in order to hold onto his ill-gotten billions.
Mykola Zlochevsky, former employer of Hunter Biden and current partner of the Atlantic Council
So he hired the best Washington influence peddlers that money could buy under the circumstances. First up was Hunter Biden, because his old man was running point on what amounted to the puppet government Washington had installed in Kiev, and Devon Archer, because he was a former bundler for former Senator (and then Secretary of State) John Kerry.
But so as to leave no stone unturned, Zlochevsky also had Burisma hire another Washington influence peddler just one month after Biden the Younger joined the board in April 2014. Again, according to the WSJ, the additional lobbyist firepower came from one,
David Leiter of Washington lobbying firm M.L. Strategies….. Mr. Leiter was John Kerry’s chief of staff when Mr. Kerry was a U.S. senator from Massachusetts….According to disclosure records, Mr. Leiter, who also had worked for the Energy Department, lobbied on behalf of Burisma on “promoting transparency and good corporate governances” at both chambers of Congress, the State Department, the Treasury Department, the Energy Department, and US AID.
Needless to say, only in Imperial Washington would all the above named arms of the US government care a whit about “transparency and good governance” at a two-bit gas producer in Ukraine. During 2018, for example, the company produced the trivial sum of 1.3 BCF of natural gas and booked revenues of just $400 million – a rounding error in just about any energy market that matters.
But as it happened, Washington was calling the shots in Kiev, and Burisma needed its government licenses and gas concessions. So the lobbying happened on the banks of the Potomac where the real power was actually exercised.
Finally, the Clinton wing of the Washington racketeering system had to be covered, too – hence the above mentioned Blue Star Strategies. And the bolded sentence from the WSJ story quoted below tells you all you need to know about its business, which was to “….help former Soviet countries prepare for NATO consideration”.
That’s right. With the Soviet Union gone, its 50,000 tanks on the central front melted-down for scrap and the Warsaw Pact disbanded, the rational order of the day was to declare “mission accomplished” for NATO and effect its own disbandment.
The great parachuter and then US president, George Bush the Elder, could have actually made a jump right into the giant Ramstein Air Base in Germany to effect its closure. At that point there was no justification for NATO’s continued existence whatsoever.
But the Clinton Administration, under the baleful influence of Washington busybodies like Strobe Talbot and Madeleine Albright, went in just the opposite direction. In pursuit of Washington’s post-1991 quest for global hegemony as the world’s only superpower and putative keeper of the peace, they prepared the way for the entirety of the old Warsaw Pact to join NATO.
So doing, however, they also laid the planking for a revival of the cold war with the Kremlin. As the father of containment and NATO during the late 1940s, Ambassador George Kennan, observed at the time, the Clinton Administration’s policy of expanding NATO to the very doorstep of Russia was a colossal mistake.
It not only violated Bush the Elder’s pledge to Gorbachev at the time of German reunification that NATO would not be expanded “by a single inch to the east”, but also set Washington on a confrontation path with the rump state of Russia that posed no threat whatsoever to America’s homeland security.
Moreover, in the case of Ukraine specifically, it had not simply been a Warsaw Pact “captive nation” like Poland or the Czech Republic. It had actually been an integral component of the old Soviet Union, and before that a vassal and sometimes province of Czarist Russia.
As the 1897 map below indicates, what is today Ukraine barely even existed as an independent state (dark yellow area) during the final centuries of the Russian Empire; and the Russian-speaking regions in what is today eastern Ukraine (yellow area on the map) had actually been known as “New Russia” owing to the Czarist policy of settling Russians there to provide a bulwark against encroachments by the Ottoman Turks.
Indeed, Crimea (orange area) had been actually purchased from them by Catherine the Great in 1783 to complete the Russification of the region north of the Black Sea. It had never been even remotely a part of Ukraine until its mainly Russian-speaking population was transferred to the Soviet Socialist Republic of the Ukraine by Khrushchev in 1954 as a reward to his Ukrainian compatriots for their support during the post-Stalin struggle for power in Moscow.
Moreover, the Ukrainian Soviet Republic, which had been largely incorporated by Moscow in 1923, had a modern bloody history that was always a civil war waiting to happen.
To wit, western Ukraine had sided with the Nazi and Hitler’s Wehrmacht as it brutally made its way through Ukraine to the siege of Stalingrad during WWII, while eastern Ukraine had lined up with the Red Army during its equally bloody campaign of destruction and revenge as it chased the defeated Nazi army back to Berlin after 1943.
So the very idea that Ukraine should be induced to join NATO was beyond the pale – and most especially after Washington had recruited modern-day political descendants of the WWII pro-Nazi brigades to replace the Yanukovych government in March 2014. Washington’s obtuseness to this history reflected pure imperial arrogance.
What is worse, of course, is that no count apparatchiks from the Clinton machine – Sally Painter and Karen Tramontano – had cashed in on this madness by setting up a practice in helping Washington to meddle in places where not an iota of homeland security was at stake.
Image result for 19th century map of the Ukraine as part of czarist Russia
As the Wall Street Journal noted, Blue Star Strategies had no compunction about using its Clinton and Biden connections in behalf of Burisma – notwithstanding the odor of oligarchical corruption which surrounded it,
Blue Star Strategies, which has been lauded in the West for its work to help former Soviet countries prepare for NATO consideration. Its founders: Sally Painter, a senior adviser to the Commerce Department in the Clinton administration, and Karen Tramontano, a deputy chief of staff in the Clinton White House.
At about the time of Mr. Shokin’s dismissal, Blue Star helped Burisma hire lawyer John D. Buretta, who argued before prosecutors in Ukraine that cases against Burisma should be closed, according to one Ukrainian official and others familiar with the matter.
“I thought I was meeting someone who was going to help with the investigations, and all he wanted to talk about was why they should be closed,” said one former Ukrainian prosecutor who met with Mr. Buretta.
So that’s how the Imperial City rolls. People make policies which extend the Empire while in office – as did these Clintonistas with the NATO expansion project – and then cash-in afterwards by peddling influence in the corridors of the beltway on behalf of Washington’s newly acquired vassals and supplicants.
In this case, all roads lead to the Atlantic Council, which is the semi-official “think tank” of NATO in Washington and is infested with Russophobes and Clinton/Biden operatives. The latter, of course, make a handsome living peddling anti-Putin propaganda – the better to grease the Washington purse strings for unneeded military spending and foreign aid, security assistance and weapons sales to the “front line” states allegedly in the path of Kremlin aggression.
In fact, so-called think tanks like the Atlantic Council are thinly disguised lobbying arms for both the Empire’s foreign supplicants as well as the U.S. agencies which feed them. Thus, in the racketeering wards of the Imperial City weapons contractors and foreign purchasers make common cause. So do the dispensers and recipients of foreign aid, security assistance and the multitude of Washington propaganda programs run through the State Department, Endowment for Democracy, Board for International Broadcasting and countless more.
In fact, the network of one hand washing the other is so pervasive and massive that it is not surprising that foreign policy and national security have become one giant racket enveloped in a bipartisan consensus in favor in intervention and meddling in the fairest parts of the planet.
The entire Ukraine intervention project, for instance, has been heavily choreographed by the Atlantic Council, which in turn derives its ample funding from virtually all parties – domestic and foreign – to the Empires far flung rackets.
Thus, US government contributors include the Pentagon, the U. S. State Department, the US Air Force, the US Navy, the Air Force Academy, the US Army War College, National Endowment for Democracy and even NATO itself.
Then there is an endless litany of foreign governments and quasi-official institutions including the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and embassies, foundations and sovereign funds representing Denmark, South Korea, Australia, Japan, Hungary, Sweden, Norway, Germany, Romania, Netherlands, Hong Kong and countless more.
Not surprisingly, the roster of military/industrial/intelligence contractors and international energy and financial institutions runs on for pages. It includes Chevron, HSBC Holdings, BP America Inc., Lockheed Martin Corporation, Raytheon, United Technologies, Boeing, ExxonMobil, Textron, Statoil, Bank of America, ConocoPhillips, JPMorgan and dozens more.
Also, amply represented in its contributor lists are other foreign policy advocacy and funding institutions including The Wallenberg Foundations, the Soros Open Society Foundations, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Arabia Foundation, Center for International Strategic Studies, the Starr Foundation, the Smith Richardson Foundation, the Carnegie Foundation etc.
Finally, there is an endless list of everyone and their brother who does business in Washington lead by the Victor Pinchuk Foundation. The latter is the influence peddling front of Ukraine’s leading billionaire who essentially stole much of its iron and steel industry after the Soviet Union collapsed and has been a leading funder of the Clinton Foundation ($6 million) and various Russophobe think tanks in addition to the Atlantic Council.
But that additional list also includes such odds and sots as Facebook, Inc., Google, Inc., Squire Patton Boggs, Starbucks Coffee Company, Twitter, McKinsey & Company, CNN and dozens more.
So it is not surprising that Burisma quickly put its money where its spotted reputation could be cycled through a refurbishment process at the Atlantic Council. Indeed, in an extensive expose, Max Blumenthal noted exactly hour the Atlantic connection came about:
Even with Hunter Biden on his company’s board, Zlochevsky was still seeking influential allies in Washington. He found them at the Atlantic Council in 2017, literally hours after he was cleared of corruption charges in Ukraine.
On Jan. 19, 2017 – just two days after the investigation of Zlochevsky ended – Burisma announced a major “cooperative agreement” with the Atlantic Council.
The deal was inked by the director of the Atlantic Council’s Eurasia program, a former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine named John Herbst.
Since then, Burisma helped bankroll Atlantic Council programming, including an energy security conference held this May in Monaco, where Zlochevsky currently lives.
The story actually gets even more convoluted from there as we will essay in Part 2.
As it turns out, virtually the entire caste of whistleblowers and Deep State testifiers now being called before the Impeachment Tribunal were in one way or another organized, financed or sponsored by the Atlantic Council.
Disruption And Deflation Decimates “World’s Oldest Profession” In Switzerland
What many considered a recession-proof occupation has been hit by tech disruption and its implicit deflationary pressure as RT reports that human prostitutes in the beautiful and civilized Swiss city of Lucerne are facing a serious squeeze (and not in a good way) as, at half the cost their human counterparts, hard-up punters prefer sex worker robots at a Swiss brothel.
At 90 Swiss francs ($90) an hour, sessions with a plastic partner at ‘Arsenal 51’ – an infamous Lucerne brothel – are half the price of genuine human female company.
However, all is not lost, as RT notes, for those not prepared to go totally virtual, a combination of a real woman and a ‘Sexpuppe’ for half an hour at 150 Swiss francs is also available. How the client divides the time is up to them.
With prostitution legal in Switzerland they have seemingly now got to the point where sex between two consenting adults is, yawn, a little humdrum. And all this time we’ve been thinking the Swiss were boring!
A survey by men’s health organization ‘Praeventionsangebot fuer Freier Don Juan’ of 9,000 men claimed that sex with a robot was a simple fetish of some men, like a preference for leather,according to spokesman Felix Neuenschwander.
So there you have it – not even the “world’s oldest profession” can stand in the way of technological progress…
The German government is considering new measures to fight extremism that would force social media companies to report hate speech to the government and to pass on the IP address of anyone posting hate speech. Social media companies are now only required to delete such posts. The proposal would also make it more difficult for German citizens to obtain firearms.
from Latest – Reason.com https://ift.tt/377zf4E
The German government is considering new measures to fight extremism that would force social media companies to report hate speech to the government and to pass on the IP address of anyone posting hate speech. Social media companies are now only required to delete such posts. The proposal would also make it more difficult for German citizens to obtain firearms.
from Latest – Reason.com https://ift.tt/377zf4E
Perhaps the only fact on James Le Mesurier about which I would agree with the MSM war cheerleaders is that he was a very busy man. It is remarkable therefore that he found the time and inclination to follow “Philip Cross” on twitter. Given that “Philip Cross” has virtually never posted an original tweet, and his timeline consists almost entirely of retweets of Nick Cohen, David Aaronovitch and openly pro-Israel propaganda accounts, why would Le Mesurier bother to follow him?
“Philip Cross” has never posted any news other than to retweet columnists. He has never given an insight into a story. In addition to James Le Mesurier, why then were all these MSM journailsts following “Philip Cross” from before “he” gained notoriety for his Wikipedia exploits?
Oliver Kamm, Leader Writer The Times
Nick Cohen, Columnist The Guardian/Observer
Joan Smith, Columnist The Independent
Leslie Felperin, Film Columnist The Guardian
Kate Connolly, Foreign Correspondent The Guardian/Observer
Lisa O’Carroll, Brexit Correspondent The Guardian
James Bloodworth, Columnist The Independent
Cristina Criddle, BBC Radio 4 Today Programme
Sarah Baxter, Deputy Editor, The Sunday Times
Iain Watson, Political Correspondent, The BBC
Caroline Wheeler, Deputy Political Editor, the Sunday Times
Jennifer Chevalier, CBC ex-BBC
Dani Garavelli, Scotland on Sunday
Bonnie Greer (frequently in The Guardian)
Mason Boycott-Owen (The Guardian, New Statesman)
Marko Attilla Hoare (The Guardian)
Guy Walters (BBC)
What attracted all of these senior MSM figures to follow an obscure account with almost no original content? No reasonable explanation of this phenomenon has ever been offered by any of the above. What a considerable number of them have done is to use the megaphone their plutocrat or state overlords have given them, to label those asking this perfectly reasonable question as crazed conspiracy theorists.
“Philip Cross” has been an operation on a massive scale to alter the balance of Wikipedia by hundreds of thousands of edits to the entries, primarily of politically engaged figures, always to the detriment of anti-war figures and to the credit of neo-con figures. An otherwise entirely obscure but real individual named Philip Cross has been identified who fronts the operation, and reputedly suffers from Aspergers. I however do not believe that any individual can truly have edited Wikpedia articles from a right wing perspective, full time every single day for five years without one day off, not even a Christmas, for 2,987 consecutive days.
I should declare here the personal interest that “Philip Cross” has made over 120 edits to my own Wikipedia entry, including among other things calling my wife a stripper, and deleting the facts that I turned down three honours from the Crown and was eventually cleared on all disciplinary charges by the FCO.
I hazard the guess that at least several of the above journalists follow “Philip Cross” on twitter because they are a part of the massive Wikipedia skewing operation operating behind the name of “Philip Cross”. If anybody has any better explanation of why they all follow “Philip Cross” on twitter I am more than willing to hear it.
The “White Helmets” operation managed for MI6 by Le Mesurier was both a channel for logistic support to Western backed jihadists and a propaganda operation to shill for war in Syria, as in Iraq or Libya. Wars which were of course very profitable for arms manufacturers, energy interests and the security establishment. It should surprise nobody that Le Mesurier intersects with the Philip Cross propaganda operation which, with the active support of arch Blairite Jimmy Wales, has for years been slanting Wikipedia in support of the same pro-war goals as pushed by the “White Helmets”.
* * *
Unlike the Integrity Initiative, the 77th Brigade, Bellingcat, the Atlantic Council and hundreds of other warmongering propaganda operations, Craig’s blog has no source of state, corporate or institutional finance whatsoever. It runs entirely on voluntary subscriptions from its readers – many of whom do not necessarily agree with the every article, but welcome the alternative voice, insider information and debate. Subscriptions to keep Craig’s blog going are gratefully received.
First Su-57 Stealth Fighter Jet Enters Russian Military Service
Several months ago, we reported that the Sukhoi Aircraft Company, part of Russia’s United Aircraft Corporation, started series production of Su-57 fifth-generation fighter jets.
Now a new report specifies that the first serial-produced Su-57 has rolled off the production line and has been delivered to Russia’s Aerospace Force, Deputy Defense Minister Alexei Krivoruchko told the press late last week.
“As for the program of creating fifth-generation aircraft, we can see together with you that the first serial-produced Su-57 plane is actually ready for its delivery to the troops. It will be delivered to the Aerospace Force before the end of this year,” Krivoruchko said.
Russia’s Aerospace Force is expecting to receive 76 Su-57s by 2028, he said.
“Next year, we are expecting to get another such plane, and subsequently, their production will grow manifold,” he added.
Back in August, Krivoruchko said the Su-57s are “the most advanced fifth-generation multirole fighter jet, which will boost the domestic Aerospace Force’s combat capabilities.”
The Su-57 is a multirole stealth fighter that is capable of maintaining supersonic cruising speed and is equipped with advanced onboard radio-electronic equipment, including a powerful onboard computer, advanced radar system, and armament placed inside its fuselage. The plane can track 60 targets and open fire at 16 of them concurrently.
The fifth-generation fighter jet has been battle-tested in combat conditions in Syria.
The Su-57 has the potential to evade US radar systems and launch hypersonic missile attacks at asset-heavy areas across Europe, Alaska, and even on the US West and East Coasts. The next world war will be fought with fifth-generation fighters and hypersonic weapons.
France is once again profoundly divided over Islam. Last Sunday, November 10, a “March against Islamophobia” was held in Paris in response to an appeal from 50 public figures. In an op-ed in the leftist newspaper Libération, the demonstrators pleaded to “stop Islamophobia and stop the growing stigmatization of Muslims, victims of discrimination and aggression”.
Two recent incidents ignited the public debate and served as a pretext for the march. On October 26, an 84-year-old man shot and injured two men while trying to set fire to the mosque of Bayonne. Earlier in October, in the Regional Assembly of Burgundy, a member of the National Rally party (RN) complained about the presence in the gallery of a woman wearing an Islamic headscarf. The French political class and media condemned both incidents almost unanimously.
Among the signatories of the op-ed are Jean-Luc Mélenchon, president of La France Insoumise (“Unsubmissive France”), the most prominent leftist political party in the French National Assembly; Benoît Hamon, the Socialist Party candidate in the last presidential election; Philippe Martinez, leader of the Communist trade-union General Confederation of Labor (CGT); Yannick Jadot, a prominent Member of European Parliament from the Green party and Edwy Plenel, editor of Mediapart, a successful online media news platform and former editor of the newspaper Le Monde.
The op-ed sparked a national debate. How could these established public figures sign a text alongside known Islamist sympathizers, such as Nader Abou Anas, an imam who believes that “women can only go out with the permission of their husband”, or Marwan Muhammad, the former CEO of the Collective against Islamophobia in France (CCIF) — an organization suspected of links with the Muslim Brotherhood — who compared the situation of Muslims in France today with those of the Jews in Germany in the 1930s, going so far as to add that “in France, mosques are machine-gunned” (“mitraillé“)?
The debate was particularly tense within the Left.Historically, the Left in France was always a powerful advocate of secularism (“laïcité” in French; a strong separation between church and state). However, a portion of the Left now chooses to support multiculturalism and so-called “identity politics” and to ally itself with Islamists whose agenda opposes having a secular state. The alliance between the traditional Left and Islamists is often described as “Islamo-gauchisme” (“Islamo-leftism”). The controversy became so great that some of the signatories even decided to abstain from participating in the demonstration.
The choice of the word “Islamophobia” as the central rallying call was, of course, not neutral. As noted by the journalist Stéphane Charbonnier, murdered in the Charlie Hebdo attack in 2015, in his posthumous book, Islamophobia “is not only a poorly chosen word but also a dangerous one.”
Historically, the word Islamophobia — coined in the 1910s by a French colonial administrator — was rarely used until the 1990s. After Iran’s 1979 Islamic Revolution, particularly after Ayatollah Khomeini’s fatwa against Salman Rushdie following the publication of The Satanic Verses, the term became used as a political weapon. The objective appears to have been to make Islam untouchable by placing any criticism of it as equivalent to racism or anti-Semitism.
The word “Islamophobia” deliberately intends to transform the critique of a religion — a fundamental right in Western societies — into a crime.
Pascal Bruckner, a French philosopher, suggested the role played by the concept. According to him:
“The term ‘Islamophobia’ serves several functions. It denies the reality of an Islamic offensive in Europe all the better to justify it. It attacks secularism by equating it with fundamentalism. Above all, however, the term is intended to silence Muslims who question the Koran, who demand equality of the sexes, who claim the right to renounce their religion, and who want to practice their faith freely and without submitting to the dictates of the bearded and dogmatic.”
Unfortunately, many media outlets and human rights groups fell directly into the trap and often use the word “Islamophobia” despite its lack of any legal basis or precise definition. Every time the word is used, it is a small victory for the Islamists.
A phobia is an extreme irrational fear or an aversion to something. Why, however, is it irrational to be afraid of Islam when terrorists murder, and call for murder, in the name of their God? — even if the perpetrators are but a small minority among Muslims. Forty years ago, who could have imagined that terrorist attacks could be perpetrated in the United States or Europe in the name of a religion? In this context, being “Islamophobic” (being afraid of a religion) is not a crime. And it is light years’ different from “hating” Muslims “for being Muslims”. It is not Muslims people “hate,” any more than they hate Hindus or Buddhists or Shintos. It is the violence and coercion that some adopt — what is known as jihad or holy war — that people reject.
The signatories were also severely criticized for their bias regarding the facts. Muslims are not targeted in France. According to the official records of the French government, last year, with 100 incidents, anti-Muslim acts were actually at their lowest level since 2010.
By comparison, after two years of decline, the number of anti-Semitic incidents in 2018 rose sharply: 541 compared to 311 in 2017 — an increase of 74%. Eighty-one of the incidents included violence, attempted homicide, or homicide. The number of recorded anti-Christian incidents reached 1063, ten times more than anti-Muslim ones.
The demonstration “against Islamophobia,” which drew 13,500 persons, took place on November 10, three days before the commemoration of the massive jihadi attacks in Paris in 2015 at the Bataclan Theater and other sites, in which terrorists murdered 131 persons and wounded 413. Is it irrational to remember who was calling those shots?
Propaganda is essential to the Deep State’s operation…
The Deep State is the small number of people who control the organizations that donate the majority of the funds which finance the political careers of national officials, such as Presidents, Prime Ministers, and members of the national legislature. Almost always, the members of the Deep State are the controlling stockholders in the international corporations that are headquartered in the given nation; and, therefore, the Deep State is more intensely interested in international than in purely national matters. Since most of its members derive a large portion of their wealth from abroad, they need to control their nation’s foreign policies even more than they need to control its domestic policies. Indeed, if they don’t like their nation’s domestic policies, they can simply relocate abroad. But relocating the operations of their corporations would be far more difficult and costly to them. Furthermore, a nation’s public know and care far less about the nation’s foreign than about its domestic policies; and, so, the Deep State reign virtually alone on the nation’s international issues, such as: which nations will be treated as “allies” and which nations will instead be treated as “enemies.” Such designations are virtually never determined by a nation’s public. The public just trust what the Government says about such matters, like, for example, the US regime’s standard allegation, for decades, that “Iran is the leading state sponsor of terrorism”, which is clearly a blatant lie.
Iran, of course, is the world’s leading Shia nation, whereas Saudi Arabia is the world’s leading Sunni nation; and the US aristocracy are bonded to the aristocracies of both Saudi Arabia and Israel, against Iran. This allegation against Iran has always been promoted by the royal family who own Saudi Arabia, the Saud family, and also by the billionaires who control Israel, as well as by the billionaires who control the US So: this allegation is by the Deep State, which controls at least these three countries: US, Saudi Arabia, and Israel.
But, as was just said, this allegation by the Deep State is false: On 9 June 2017, I headlined “All Islamic Terrorism Is Perpetrated by Fundamentalist Sunnis, Except Terrorism Against Israel” and listed 54 terrorist attacks which had been prominent in US-and-allied media during 2001-2017, and all of them except for a few that were against Israel were attacks by Sunni groups — not affiliated with Iran. Subsequently, Kent R. Kroeger’s 16 May 2019 study “Is Iran the biggest state sponsor of terrorism?” concluded that overwhelmingly the majority of terrorist attacks ever since 1994 have been by Sunni groups, but he attributed the attacks by Yemen’s Shiite Houthis against Sunni Saudi Arabia as being “terrorist” attacks, even though these were instead actually responses to the Sauds’ war against, and to eliminate, Houthis in Yemen. Also, Kroeger attributed those Houthi actions to “Iran,” which is absurd. (The Houthis simply did not like being exterminated. And the US, of course, supplied the weapons and the military planning, for this attempted ethnic cleansing operation.) There were many other methodological flaws. And yet, still, even with its methodological flaws, Kroeger, concluded: “The distorted US propagandized image of Iran’s aggression looming over the Middle East is, frankly, ‘fake news.’” This is how untrustworthy the Deep State’s ‘news’ actually is. The term “fake news” is, in fact, misleading (or itself fake news) if it is not referring to the Deep State’s propaganda. In my 27 November 2017 “How the US Came to Label Iran the Top State Sponsor of Terrorism”, I described specifically the Deep State’s operation that had created the phrase “Iran is the leading state sponsor of terrorism”. But this is the way the Deep State operates, routinely, on all international issues. It operates by deceit. This is how it achieves the consent of the public, whom it actually rules. This is entirely consistent with the scientific findings about the United States, that it is a dictatorship, not a democracy. All of the evidence is consistent.
The Deep State here is the US-and allied Deep State, no merely national organization. It consists mainly of America’s billionaires, plus of the billionaires in US-allied countries such as UK, France, Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Israel — but many more (including, for example, in Honduras, Brazil, etc.). These people number fewer than 2,000 in total, and they do deals together, and their contacts with one-another are both direct person-to-person, and indirect by means of representatives or agents. However, America’s billionaires lead the US-and-allied Deep State. That’s to say, the leaders are among the 607 US billionaires, the people who mainly fund American national political campaigns and candidates — and these 607 individuals determine who will get an opportunity to become a US President or member of Congress, and who won’t. For example: these individuals don’t necessarily select the politician who will become America’s President, but they do select who will get the opportunity to be among the serious contenders for that position. (Basically, what the mullahs do in Iran, these super-rich do in America. Whereas in Iran the clergy rule, in America the aristocracy rule.)
One, in particular, is George Soros, and this article will detail the views of one of his many beneficiaries. Another of these billionaires is Charles Koch, but he will not be discussed here, and inside the United States he is popularly considered to be an enemy of George Soros, only because the two men oppose each other on domestic issues. (Billionaires tend to be much more concerned with, and united about, foreign affairs than about domestic affairs, though they do oppose both their taxation and their regulation — they are for ‘free markets’, both domestically and abroad, and yet they also favor imposition of economic sanctions against countries which resist becoming controlled by them, and so they don’t really favor free markets except to the extent that free markets favor their own increase in power and thus tend toward oligopoly and away from competition.) Both men are much more alike than different, and both represent what’s called “neoliberalism,” which is the universal ideology of billionaires, or at least of all billionaires who donate to (i.e., invest in) politicians. Only few billionaires don’t invest in politicians; and, though politicians disagree with one-another, almost all of them are neoliberals, because politicians who aren’t that are not funded by the Deep State (the billionaires). The foreign policies of neoliberals are called “neoconservative” and this means supporting regime-change in any country that’s labeled by billionaires and their government an “enemy” nation. So, “neoconservative” is merely an extension of “neoliberal”: it favors extending neoliberalism to other nations — it is internationally aggressive neoliberalism; it is imperialistic neoliberalism. It is fascism, but so is neoliberalism itself fascist; the difference between the two is that neoconservatism is the imperialistic extension of fascism — it is the imperialistic fascism that, in World War II, was represented by the three Axis powers — Germany, Italy, and Japan — not by the purely domestic fascism that was represented by Spain. Whereas Spain was merely neoliberal, the Axis were also neoconservative (expansionist neoliberal), and the latter is what the Allies in WW II were warring against. But now the US has emerged as the world’s leading neoconservative regime, invading and occupying country after country, none of which had ever invaded nor even threatened to invade the United States. Propaganda is necessary in order to ‘justify’ doing that. This article will describe how that’s done.
The Deep State doesn’t concern domestic issues, because virtually all of its members control international corporations, and the Deep State is almost entirely about international issues: foreign policies, diplomacy, military issues, and international spying agencies called “intelligence agencies” — extending the empire. The Deep State controls all of that, regardless of what Party is nominally in power. (The public care little about foreign policy, pay little attention to it, and believe the government when it alleges that “national security” is about protecting them, and not about expanding the power and wealth of the billionaires.)
The dictatorship of the US Deep State really is more international than national; it provides the continuity in international relations, when it chooses and defines which nations (which foreign governments) are “allies” (meaning “we sell arms to them”) and which are instead “enemies” (meaning “we should sanction them and maybe even bomb them”). Both allies and enemies are essential in order for the military-industrial-press-government complex (here: “MIPGC”) to thrive, and the Deep State controls the entire MIPGC. In other words: the Deep State is an international empire, and, as such, its supreme aspiration is to conquer (via subversion, sanctions, coups, and/or invasions) all countries that it labels as “enemies.”
The way that the Deep State views things, there is no need for an ‘enemy’ to threaten or invade the United States in order for it to be “an enemy,” but, instead, the United States and its allies possess a God-given right to impose sanctions against, or coups overthrowing, or invasions of, any country they choose, so long as they can criticize that other country for being a ‘dictatorship’, or for ‘violating human rights’, or for otherwise doing what the Deep State itself actually does more than any other government on this planet does (and particularly does it to its selected ‘enemies’ — such as were Iraq, Libya, Syria, Iran, Venezuela, and any other country that’s either friendly toward, or else an ally of, Russia, which is the other nuclear super-power, and the Deep State’s central target).
However, though those few super-wealthy individuals (in addition to the general public’s taxes) fund its operations, their many operatives are true-believing followers (believers in neoliberalism-neoconservatism), and this is the reason why the masters fund those individuals’ careers. It’s why these masters provide the platforms and personal connections and employment which enable the true-believers to advance, while opponents of the Deep State (i.e., opponents of the billionaires’ collective dictatorship) cannot find any billionaires to patronize them. In a society that has extremely concentrated wealth, this means that there will be virtual penury for opponents of the billionaires’ collective dictatorship. Especially the major politicians need patrons amongst the aristocracy, the billionaires, in order to have successful careers.
The beneficiary of the Deep State who will be exemplified, discussed, and finally quoted, here, will be Jacek Rostowski, who is also known as Jan Anthony, and as Jan Anthony Vincent-Rostowski.Wikipedia’s article on him opens:
Jan Anthony Vincent-Rostowski, also known as Jacek Rostowski (Polish pronunciation: [ˈjan ˈvint͡sɛnt rɔsˈtɔfskʲi]; born 30 April 1951, London) is a British-Polish economist and politician who served as Minister of Finance and Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Poland.
He was a candidate for Change UK in London at the 2019 European Parliament election in the United Kingdom.
It also says:
From 1995 he has been Professor of Economics and was the head of the Department of Economics at the Central European University in Budapest during the periods: 1995–2000 and 2005–2006. …
Rostowski was a member of Britain’s Conservative Party. In the beginning of 2010, it was announced that two months prior he has become member of the Civic Platform party (PO). In the wake of the Parliamentary Elections of 2011, he became Member of Parliament, being elected from the list of Civic Platform Party (PO).
In late 2015, Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz appointed Rostowski as her top political adviser.
Vincent-Rostowski has published around 40 academic papers on European enlargement, monetary policy, currency policy and the transformation of post communist economies. He is the author of academic books including Macroeconomic Instability in Post-Communist Countries published by Oxford University Press.
On November 3rd, the Ukrainian ‘news’-medium Apostrophe interviewed him, and published the interview in Ukrainian. (The interviewee isn’t fluent in Ukrainian, but the article’s translator into Ukrainian isn’t identified.) What will be posted here is an English translation of that Ukrainian original.
The site was aimed to prepare informational and analytical materials, presentations of important events in politics, economics, society and culture. Apostrophe’s editorial policy is based on principles of impartiality, precision and veracity, velocity, objectivity and balance in the presentation of information. Apostrophe sticks to journalism ethical standards. That is why published materials should not propagate violence, cruelty, cause racial, national or religious hatred. Apostrophe is a proponent of the common humanism values, peace, democracy, social progress and human rights.
The project functions with the direct participation and use of the resources of the International Centre for Policy Studies (ICPS). Apostrophe’s idea lies within the framework of synergy between journalists and analysts.
A basic presumption of that interview, both by the interviewer and by the interviewee, is the Russian Government’s being wrong in everything, and the Ukrainian Government’s — the regime which Obama (another of Soros’s beneficiaries) had installed — being right in everything. Here is this interview, as an illustrative example of how propaganda is professionally done:
ORIGINAL OF THIS ARTICLE (in Ukrainian) (now translated here into English):
Apostrophe: How would you describe the current state of security in the European region?
Jan Anthony: Since 2014, military security has become a more important topic of discussion in Europe. After all, the events in Crimea and Donbass caused shock. After a long period of time, when defence issues were put on the back burner, they are now again becoming an important factor in the European security environment. Now there are serious problems requiring high priority and serious solutions. And, of course, there are other problems that relate to the same issue — the fight against terrorism, for example.
The EU and NATO work very closely together to prepare for different types of threats. Now there is a return to a potential military conflict with Russia. In addition, there is an unsustainable security situation in the south, in Africa, because of the conflict in Libya, and in the Sahara. They can also pose a terrorist threat. Therefore, the issue of European security has become more complex than it was 5-10 years ago.
“You specialize in managing military conflicts. How do you think the conflict in Ukraine can be solved?
“Conflict management and conflict resolution are different things. Now I see attempts to create a more positive context in the Donbass issue. We need to return to the Minsk agreements as a basic resolution on the conflict. As you know, discussions are under way on the so-called Steinmeier formula. Therefore, now there is an opportunity to return to the discussion of how the Minsk agreements should be implemented. There are serious questions about the sequence of points — what should be done in the first place. And there is also the question of how to confirm the parties’ compliance with their obligations, because now there is a very low level of trust among the participants. Therefore, everything that will be done, it is necessary to immediately demonstrate — behold, it is fulfilled.
“How about the implementation of Minsk? Especially given that it has not worked for almost 5 years.
“As I see it, no one is discussing any alternatives now. Perhaps among the people discussing ways to implement the agreements, there are other options, but I have no idea what they can be. The Minsk agreements are still in the spotlight.
“Let’s talk about Crimea. What are the threats on the peninsula?
“Of course, it is an extremely serious threat by its nature. Any use of it would be disastrous.
“Will the Kremlin decide to use these weapons in the near future? Or is it just a way to intimidate the West?
“The primary objective of nuclear weapons is deterrence. This is the main goal with which Russia placed it in Crimea.
“Is it possible to compare the situation with the Cuban crisis?
“I would not say that these two situations are similar. There the crisis came very, very close to escalating into an armed conflict. I don’t think we’re going to get to that level of confrontation. [NOTE HERE: Both the interviewer and the interviewee ignore that instead of the Soviet Union’s 1962 attempt to place nuclear missiles on the island of Cuba 95 miles from America’s border, the US ploy now is to place its nuclear missiles right on Russia’s 1625-mile border with Russia — the discussants’ assumption reverses the actual threat, and thus insults their readers’ — or else their own — basic intelligence.] But now it is a very dangerous situation. We need to find more stable mechanisms that cannot be developed by comparing the situation to the Cuban crisis.
“How can the Western world force Russia to take its weapons from Crimea?
“Of course, the sanctions have had an effect. I’m sure they’ll stay — I don’t see any reason to take them off. International pressure on Russia will continue. Normalization of relations with it is impossible as long as the current situation in Crimea remains. And since Russia has no intention of leaving the peninsula, we will live for a long time in difficult relations with it, including sanctions, as well as cooperation of Western countries, taking into account possible military confrontation.
“Let’s recall the attack on Ukrainian military vessels in the Kerch Strait, which occurred almost a year ago. How can we avoid the threat of further Russian attacks on Ukrainian and foreign ships?
“Ukraine has lost control of part of its navigation, as well as guaranteed access to the Sea of Azov — and this is a complex problem. This issue must therefore remain the focus of international attention. Ukraine should have access to the water area and carry out commercial operations in ports. Georgia faced the same problem — the loss of control over navigation in a certain area. A special mechanism is needed to address these issues. But I have no suggestions on what it should be.
“Russia recently blocked international waters in the Black Sea and thus blocked trade routes. How should the international community respond to such behaviour?
“We must respect the International Convention on Navigation. We must continue to conduct military exercises in the Black Sea and it is important that NATO countries participate in them. Of course, there remains a risk that Russia will also organize its exercises. I think the ships will enjoy the freedom of navigation established by the International Convention. Some issues may need to be discussed more broadly for the sake of a future long-term convention. We need to make it more relevant to modern security requirements. It is important to revise time limits on stay in the Black Sea for NATO ships. Nato’s defence and deterrence plans should also be changed. NATO must have greater access to the Black Sea and its naval forces spend more time there.
“Does the need to renegotiate international agreements on the weakness of international institutions, as well as their unpreparedness for strikes by Russia, speak?
“Many countries have entered into bilateral agreements with Russia to ensure their confidence in the use of the sea. I think such deals need to be modernized, as well as add another agreement, which spells out a mechanism for discussing maritime incidents on the basis of international organizations, for example, under the OSCE umbrella. This will avoid misunderstandings that may arise from disregard for the rules.
In the case of deliberate violations, for example, when military exercises block part of the Black Sea, other measures of influence will have to be used. And in that case, there must be a clear international response. If you look at the 2014 NATO summit at Brussels, there have been decisions that have had a very tough response in the event of any crisis. The only question is what to do to Ukraine, which is not a member of the Alliance and does not obey its decisions.
“Regarding Russian military power. During the “Grom-2019” exercises, which were held recently under the personal guidance of Vladimir Putin, the nuclear submarine cruiser K-44 “Ryazan” fired only one ballistic intercontinental missile R-29R. The other missile just didn’t come out of the mine. This is not the first time that the Russian army has failed. So the question arises, is Russia really a threat to peace, all this is just a demonstration?
“Russia can solve the problems that you have named. But no one doubts that it has an extremely powerful nuclear arsenal. Despite some problems with weapons, Russia is still very strong.
“The Kremlin has promised to develop short- and medium-range missiles and deploy them to confront the West (in fact, they already exist — Iskanders). Does this mean that now the situation in Europe is close to the state of the Cold War, when the USSR and the West deployed iCBM for mutual deterrence?
“Yes, Russia has already developed and deployed the ICBM. We don’t know if they’re all equipped with nuclear weapons. But for the balance of power, NATO must have a significant force with nuclear weapons.
There are differences with the Cold War. Then there was complete separation and no contact between East and West. And now we have significant economic cooperation. It is still possible to hold political discussions, including with the participation of intergovernmental organizations. So now the situation is not quite the same as during the Cold War. But, as I said, the security situation in Europe is very difficult and relations with Russia deteriorate. The absence of signs that this deterioration is coming to an end is worrying. There are no very effective ways to improve relations with Russia. Therefore, there are different reasons for concern.
“The Kremlin sent the S-400 division and the Panzir-S battery to Serbia to the Russian Air Defense Forces. This is, in fact, Russian military exercises near the EU. [NOTE HERE: The problem isn’t that Russia is moving too close to the EU — such as the discussants imply — but that NATO has moved right up to Russia’s borders. Again, the presumption insults readers’ — and/or their own — basic intelligence.] Is this preparation for a strike against the West?
“Serbia’s position is that they want to have good relations with both their neighbors and NATO countries, but also with Russia. Serbia is also training with NATO countries. Serbia wants a balance of power, but in the event of a conflict it will support EU membership. It is politically and economically related to Western countries. Therefore, I do not believe that such exercises are the Kremlin’s preparation for an attack on the EU.
“How would you assess the military threats to Europe in Ukraine, Belarus and Moldova?
“It is difficult to answer because these are three different countries and the situation in each of them is completely different from the other.
“Ukraine and Moldova have similar situations. Russian soldiers are still in Transnistria – the only difference is that the conflict there is frozen.
“Yes, they are there, but they do not fight like in Ukraine.
Do you believe that this frozen conflict can continue?
“Today we think it’s not very likely.
“Is Europe expecting a military strike from Russia?
“No, we don’t expect it and we don’t expect it. But we do not rule it out, we allow it in our defense plans. Preparations are under way for these attacks, which means that their probability is reduced.
“Russia invests heavily in European political parties like the French National Front or the League of the North in Italy. Is there any evidence that the Kremlin is investing in “militia” in EU countries and supplying weapons to Europe to shake up the situation. Perhaps it is funding crime to influence the situation in the EU?
“There have been many investigations into ties with the Kremlin, in particular financial ties from politicians. The EU discusses a lot of cyber threats, the possibility of attacks on infrastructure, as well as information attacks. But I have never seen the Kremlin supply weapons to non-state organizations, especially criminal groups.
“Russia has taken up the settlement of the issue in Syria. What’s going on out there now?
“Officially, Russia is helping Bashar al-Assad’s forces gain control over Syrian territory. But what is happening now is, from the Kremlin’s point of view, the formation of a single strategic space, including the Black Sea and the eastern Mediterranean. Russia has free access to the Black Sea and now the Russian Navy has gained much greater access to the waters of the eastern Mediterranean. They plan to use this strategic space for a possible confrontation with NATO forces.
“How can this affect Europe?
“It’s a very difficult question. One issue of concern is the influx of refugees and temporarily displaced persons to Turkey and Europe. On the other hand, again, Russia’s creation of a single strategic space, interference in the Mediterranean.
“Let’s go back to Ukraine. You are a nuclear safety expert. We have many nuclear power plants, can they pose a threat to the world in the event of full-scale aggression?
“Yes, this is a very big threat, first of all for Ukraine itself, then for the rest of the world. One of the Ukrainian officials stated that this is why there was a significant revision of the concept of Ukraine’s security. It includes so-called “internal threats” to nuclear equipment and the creation of national protection, will protect and defend nuclear reactors. I think that the threat to the infrastructure of the nuclear power plant in Ukraine is real. But the Ukrainian government takes this seriously and takes the necessary measures.
As can be clearly seen there, the basic method of the Deep State’s propagandists is to ask questions which have assumptions that are the reverse of reality, and to answer these questions in ways that confirm those falsehoods.
This is what many millions of people get paid to do.
And it creates “Big Brother” or the Deep State here, just as, in 1948, George Orwell might have been thinking that it would do in 1984. And a good example of how the Deep State ‘justifies’ itself in America, is shown here.
A one-bedroom apartment in Columbus, Ohio, costs $489 a month. It’s the only zip code on the list that’s under $500.
Rogers, Arkansas and Greenville, Texas, were tied for second least expensive, with monthly rents costing $510. Cities like Oklahoma City, Champaign, Illinois and Shreveport, Louisiana, cost under $550 per month.
Conway, Arkansas fell in the middle of the last with $555 per month for a one-bedroom apartment and Amarillo, Texas, Derby, Kansas, and Youngstown, Ohio finished off the least expensive zip codes by costing renters about $600 per month.