Archive for the ‘(Politics) CURRENT AFFAIRS’ Category

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A story that has appeared in a few outlets in recent days, principally the Times of Israel, may provide a clue to the real reason why Trump’s short-lived National Security Advisor Michael Flynn has been made to resign – and it has nothing to do with Russia.
It is also something people should really be paying attention to.

According to a report in the Times of Israel, ‘Trump wants Jewish billionaire to vet spy agencies’. President Trump is reportedly looking into assigning an Israeli/US billionaire from the world of finance ‘to lead a broad review of intelligence services’. (more…)

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You couldn’t really get a better – or more tragic – illustration than this of the continuity of agenda when it comes to US foreign policy and of how it doesn’t actually matter what administration happens to be in the White House.

It’s all about perspective, of course: but if you’re a child in Yemen, for example, it makes little difference to you whether you’re being murdered by US soldiers under a Donald Trump administration or by US soldiers under a Barack Obama or George W. Bush administration (or by Saudi airstrikes).

The striking story that illustrates this point came to my notice initially via the Free Thought Project, primarily citing Glenn Greenwald at The Intercept and the work of Jeremy Scahill: it involves two children from the same family, both having been murdered by American actions – one of them during the Obama administration and the other now in the Trump administration. (more…)

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Opponents of US-led foreign interventions and wars may find themselves disappointed by the foreign policy paths the Trump-led White House ends up taking.

It hasn’t taken very long at all for the ill omens to appear. For all the talk of a new, inward-looking protectionism and a backing away from Neo-Con activity in the Middle East, suspicions build that the new administration may be all set to continue the Neo-Con agenda and soon commence hostile activity against Iran.

The accusations being leveled at Iran by President Trump and his Islamophobic National Security Adviser Michael Flynn (the “Islam is a cancer” guy) concerning alleged Iranian violations of the nuclear treaty are likely manufactured to try to mislead the American public into accepting military action against Iran. (more…)

I was recently asked to do a new interview, this one for William Ramsay Investigates‘ You-Tube channel and the Ed Opperman Report radio network.

This is the You Tube video upload on William Ramsay’s main channel. The audio/radio version should be airing on Awake radio at 22.00 tomorrow (Saturday 4th February) and then otherwise available on all channels of the Ed Opperman Report. (more…)

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I have decided – due to requests from several people – to stop writing negative things about Donald Trump or the Steve Bannon administration that has just come into the White House.

Even though I have serious misgivings about this new administration and its outlook (along with some more positive views on some specific ideas), I will – for a little while, at least – refrain from upsetting anyone any further or bursting any bubbles by asking questions or being too critical about the Trump White House.

Barring any particularly extraordinary event, this will be a Trump-free zone for a while. (more…)

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Just as quick add-on to yesterday’s post about the Cheney/Rumsfeld regime’s torture programs and their psychological role in provoking so much of the modern radicalism and terrorism coming from the Middle East, there is another angle to this subject I wanted to touch on.

The interesting thing about torture – aside from its ineffectiveness in information-gathering – is that it is, conversely, regarded as highly effective in a completely different regard: as a form of mind control or psychological conditioning. (more…)

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Torture exists. It goes on in the world. We all know that.
30 years after the UN Convention Against Torture established measures to eradicate the practice, it is in fact still going on in at least 141 countries; including countries that are signatories to the UN convention, according to Amnesty International’s  annual report (the one I’m quoting is from 2014).

The 1948 Universal Declaration on Human Rights is unambiguous: “No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.”

That ruling, as well as the Geneva Conventions and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, dictates an absolute ban on torture for any purpose; note that there’s no special allowance for ‘times of war’ or ‘urgent matters of national security’ or any other excuse any governments or agencies might offer for their illegal actions. (more…)

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So Inauguration Day in Washington came across as a decidedly odd, even slightly unsettling, affair: which is perhaps the only fitting end-point for what has been a decidedly odd, even slightly unsettling, presidential race.
It also seemed to affirm my fears that we’re falling deeper into a bad place.

What was most striking about the scenes is how low-key, even grim, the mood and atmosphere was, feeling slightly more like a Soviet-style event than an American presidential inauguration. Something similar was noted by Russian chess legend Garry Kasparov recently in regard to Trump’s first press event. (more…)

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To conclude this series of posts anticipating the imminent change of residents at the White House, it is worth paying mind to the issue of foreign policy.

It’s funny how quickly the Trump campaign mantra of “drain the swamp” really, properly stopped being a thing.

Not that I ever thought it was a thing anyway; but Trump’s ‘movement’ hasn’t even taken office yet and has already exposed itself as a cabal of extremely wealthy banking and business interests, hawkish figures, evangelicals and – to be frank – a couple of psychopaths for good measure. (more…)