America is in trouble because Americans got lazy. Not so much physically but morally. They began to care more about some passing thing than about the things that truly matter; the things that made America unlike other places. Better than other places. Eric Peters is a Libertarian gearhead, columnist and author.
“Without the pen of the author of Common Sense, the sword of Washington would have been raised in vain.”– John Adams
Thomas Paine was born in 1737 in Britain. His first thirty seven years of life were pretty much a series of failures and disappointments. Business fiascos, firings, the death of his first wife and child, a failed second marriage, and bankruptcy plagued his early life. He then met Benjamin Franklin in 1774 and was convinced to emigrate to America, arriving in Philadelphia in November 1774. He thus became the Father of the American Revolution with the publication of Common Sense, pamphlets which crystallized opinion for colonial independence in 1776.
The first pamphlet was published in Philadelphia on January 10, 1776, and signed anonymously “by an Englishman.” It became an instantaneous sensation, swiftly disseminating 100,000 copies in three months among the two and a half million residents of the 13 colonies. Over 500,000 copies were sold during the course of the American Revolution. Paine published Common Sense after the battle of Lexington and Concord, making the argument the colonists should seek complete independence from Great Britain, rather than merely fighting against unfair levels of taxation. The pamphlets stirred the masses with a fighting spirit, instilling in them the backbone to resist a powerful empire.
It was read aloud in taverns, churches and town squares, promoting the notion of republicanism, bolstering fervor for complete separation from Britain, and boosting recruitment for the fledgling Continental Army. He rallied public opinion in favor of revolution among layman, farmers, businessmen and lawmakers. It compelled the colonists to make an immediate choice. It made the case against monarchy, aristocracy, tyranny and unfair taxation, offering Americans a solution – liberty and freedom. It was an important precursor to the Declaration of Independence, which was written six months later by Paine’s fellow revolutionaries.
Paine’s contribution to American independence 241 years ago during the first American Fourth Turning cannot be overstated. His clarion call for colonial unity against a tyrannical British monarch played a providential role in convincing farmers, shopkeepers, and tradesmen reconciliation with a hereditary monarchy was impossible, and armed separation was the only common sense option. He made the case breaking away from Britain was inevitable, and the time was now. Armed conflict had already occurred, but support for a full-fledged revolution had not yet coalesced within the thirteen colonies. Paine’s rhetorical style within the pamphlets aroused enough resentment against the British monarchy to rally men to arms, so their children wouldn’t have to fight their battles.
“I prefer peace, but if trouble must come, let it be in my time that my children may know peace.” – Thomas Paine
As concern over the last week of Obama’s tenure as President continues to mount and as tensions with Russia edge upwards more and more by the day, the United States and NATO are doing everything they can to signal that they are ready and willing for World War Three. After months of falsely accusing the Russian government of “war crimes,” “crimes against humanity,” and empire expansion simply for killing Western-backed terrorists in Syria, the U.S. government and corporate media followed up with months more of claims of “Russian hacking” even insinuating that the Russians “hacked the U.S. elections.” This was, of course, after over a year of claiming Russia shot down civilian air liners, invaded Ukraine, imprisons gays, and has no rights for women.
Over the course of the crisis in Ukraine, the U.S. has repeatedly moved troops into threatening positions close to the Russian border. Now, however, one of the biggest pushes yet has materialized in Eastern Europe, right on Russia’s doorstep in Poland, Estonia, Latvia, Hungary, and Bulgaria. Dubbed, Operation Atlantic Resolve, the massive NATO troop deployment is an obvious act of troop placement in order to prepare for an actual ground assault on Russia itself. At best, it is an incredibly foolish act of bullying and intimidation. At worst, it is preparation for a nuclear holocaust.
US tanks and armoured vehicles along with over 3,000 US soldiers begin arriving in Poland on Thursday, (12 January). The deployment, which falls under Operation Atlantic Resolve, is the largest exercise of US troops in Europe in decades.
Hundreds of armoured vehicles and over 80 main battle tanks have already arrived in Germany and are reportedly being moved by road and rail to Eastern Europe.
Operation Atlantic Resolve is a mission to show Moscow that Washington is committed to protecting its allies in Eastern Europe. It was launched in the aftermath of Russia annexing Crimea, which triggered fears that Moscow could move to make a similar land grab in Eastern Europe.
The US Armoured Brigade will also reportedly conduct military exercises in the Baltics. The exercise is a part of President Barack Obama’s plan to ease tensions among Nato allies who are concerned about Russian aggression. According to reports, the forces will rotate every nine months.
Tanks and other materials will eventually be stationed in Poland, Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, Romania and Hungary.
The Duran also describes the massive troop deployments in the following way:
Self-propelled Howitzers and hundreds of other armored fighting vehicles were landing on the shores of northern Germany. To those who had at least one eye on the news, it was like watching the US invasion at Normandy all over again. Over the last few days, some 2,800 pieces of military hardware and 4,000 troops have arrived at the port in Bremerhaven.
The delivery of US Abrams tanks, Paladin artillery, and Bradley fighting vehicles marks a new phase of America’s continuous presence in Europe, which will now be based on a nine-month rotation.
. . . . .
Operation Atlantic Resolve – as it is being called – is the newest phase in adding and keeping a US armored brigade on the European NATO front and will operate on a nine-month rotational basis. With its headquarters based in Germany, the brigade will first enter Poland and then disperse throughout seven countries from Estonia to Bulgaria; a military front much closer to the Kremlin in Moscow than was setup during the Cold War with the former USSR.
Since the announcement, Putin has had no choice but to counter the military move along Russia’s borders.
. . . . .
Great Britain will also be joining the military surge – sending fighter jets to the Black Sea and a battalion of troops, tanks and light armor to Estonia later in the spring. Those troops with be supported by French and Danish troops while Germany will be bolstering troops and sending tanks into Lithuania.
Other counties participating in the “Enhanced Forward Presence” are Canada, Romania, the Netherlands, Albania, Croatia, Belgium, Italy, Slovenia and Luxembourg. The US will also be relocating its Stryker Unit from Germany to Poland to join the vastly expanded military presence.
It should be clear enough by now that the U.S. is by no means acting defensively in Ukraine, Syria, Europe or anywhere else. The U.S. government is playing a very dangerous game that could very well end the lives of the overwhelming majority of the planet. Thankfully, Putin has proven to be a cooler head than any leader in the NATO infrastructure and his calm responses are most likely the only reason the world has not been incinerated by now. The American people had better start paying attention to the aggressive posturing of their government and begin speaking out before it is too late.
When American firms dominate a global market worth more than $70 billion a year, you’d expect to hear about it. Not so with the global arms trade. It’s good for one or two stories a year in the mainstream media,usually when the annual statistics on the state of the business come out.
There were ten times more air strikes in the covert war on terror during President Barack Obama’s presidency than under his predecessor, George W. Bush.
Obama embraced the US drone programme, overseeing more strikes in his first year than Bush carried out during his entire presidency. A total of 563 strikes, largely by drones, targeted Pakistan, Somalia and Yemen during Obama’s two terms, compared to 57 strikes under Bush. Between 384 and 807 civilians were killed in those countries, according to reports logged by the Bureau.
The US government today claimed it has killed between 64 and 116 “non-combatants” in 473 counter-terrorism strikes in Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia and Libya between January 2009 and the end of 2015.
This is a fraction of the 380 to 801 civilian casualty range recorded by the Bureau of Investigative Journalism from reports by local and international journalists, NGO investigators, leaked government documents, court papers and the result of field investigations.
While the number of civilian casualties recorded by the Bureau is six times higher than the US Government’s figure, the assessments of the minimum total number of people killed were strikingly similar. The White House put this figure at 2,436, whilst the Bureau has recorded 2,753.
Since becoming president in 2009, Barack Obama has significantly extended the use of drones in the War on Terror. Operating outside declared battlefields, such as Afghanistan and Iraq, this air war has been largely fought in Pakistan and Yemen.
On this edition of The Geopolitical Report, we look at Barack Obama’s legacy as a record breaking arms dealer. Obama has enabled Saudi Arabia to wage an illegal war in Yemen and has gifted the merchants of death with billions of dollars in new contracts with Taiwan and Vietnam. We also cover the Nye Commission and its investigation into the munitions industry after the First World War. Finally, we look at how the new Trump administration has promised to radically expand the US military and make the merchants of death billions more in profit from war and death.
In a truly remarkable bit of honesty and candor regarding the U.S. national-security establishment, new Senate minority leader Charles Schumer has accused President-elect Trump of “being really dumb.”
Was Schumer referring to Trump’s ideology, philosophy, or knowledge about economics or foreign policy?
None of the above. According to an article in The Hill, he told Rachel Maddow on her show that Trump was dumb for taking on the CIA and questioning its conclusions regarding Russia.
“Let me tell you, you take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you…. He’s being really dumb to do this.”
Maddow then asked Schumer what he thought the intelligence community might do to Trump to get back at him.
Schumer’s response was fascinating and revealing. He responded, “I don’t know.”
So, Schumer knows that there are six ways from Sunday for the intelligence community to get back at Trump but then, a few seconds later, can’t enumerate even one of those ways? That makes no sense, unless he was a bit scared to go into the details for fear that one of those “six ways from Sunday” might be employed against him.
In any event, Schumer’s point is a good one, even if he is reluctant to clarify it. No president since John F. Kennedy has dared to take on the CIA or the rest of the national security establishment or to operate outside the bounds of permissible parameters within the paradigm of the national-security state.
That might have been because post-JFK presidents just happened to find themselves on the same page as the Pentagon, the CIA, and the NSA.
But another possibility is that the one mentioned by Schumer: They knew that if they opposed the national-security establishment at a fundamental level, they would be subjected to retaliatory measures.
Kennedy had come into office as a standard Cold Warrior and as a supporter of the national-security state system, the totalitarian-like apparatus that was grafted onto America’s federal governmental system after World War II. But after he was set up and betrayed by the CIA with respect to the Bay of Pigs invasion, he was at loggerheads with that agency for the rest of his presidency. After the Bay of Pigs, he vowed to tear the CIA into a thousand pieces and scatter them to the winds. He also fired CIA Director Allen Dulles, who, in a rather unusual twist of fate, would later be appointed to the Warren Commission to investigate Kennedy’s murder.
Kennedy’s antipathy toward the CIA gradually extended to what President Eisenhower had termed the military-industrial complex, especially when it proposed Operation Northwoods, which called for fraudulent terrorist attacks to serve as a pretext for invading Cuba, and when it suggested that Kennedy initiate a surprise nuclear attack on the Soviet Union. (The latter suggestion caused Kennedy to indignantly leave the meeting of the Joint Chiefs of Staff when the suggestion was made and remark to an aide, “And we call ourselves the human race.”
The feeling was mutual. The CIA considered Kennedy to be a traitor for refusing to provide U.S. air support for the CIA’s invaders at the Bay of Pigs. One member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff considered the way Kennedy handled the Cuban Missile Crisis to be the biggest defeat in U.S. history and compared the president’s actions to Neville Chamberlain’s capitulation at Munich in 1938.
After the Cuban Missile Crisis, Kennedy’s war with his national-security establishment got even worse. That’s because Kennedy concluded that the Cold War was bunk, that it should be ended, and that the United States could peacefully coexist with the communist world. That’s when he delivered his famous Peace Speech at American University, which was broadcast all across the Soviet Union. He had failed to consult with the Pentagon or the CIA in preparing the speech. He also entered into a Nuclear Test Ban Treaty with the Soviets, over the fierce objections of his national-security establishment. He also ordered a partial withdrawal of troops from Vietnam and told close associates that he would order a complete withdrawal after defeating Barry Goldwater in the 1964 election. Worst of all, from the standpoint of the national-security establishment, he initiated secret personal negotiations with Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev and Cuban leader Fidel Castro, both of whom, by this time, were on the same page as Kennedy.
But that wasn’t the page that the CIA and the Pentagon were on. They were convinced that Kennedy was surrendering America to the communists. As far as they were concerned, there could never be peaceful coexistence with the communist world. There was only one way that the Cold War could end — by finishing off the Soviet Union once and for all.
It’s worth pointing out that Kennedy’s actions constituted a direct threat to the trillions of dollars in military and intelligence largess that would end up flowing into the coffers of the “defense” industry if the Cold War and hot wars (e.g., Vietnam) were to continue.
Kennedy was fully aware of the danger he faced by taking on such a formidable enemy. He understood precisely what Schumer just pointed out about the national-security establishment — that they have “six ways from Sunday” to retaliate.
One possibility, of course, was a military coup, the same type that the U.S. national-security establishment would initiate in Chile some ten years later to save the country from a democratically elected president who was deemed to be a threat to national security, especially owing to his desire to establish friendly relations with the Soviet Union and Cuba. Kennedy was so concerned about that possibility that he persuaded a friend in Hollywood to turn the novel Seven Days in May into a movie (I highly recommend it—it stars Burt Lancaster and Kirk Douglas) to serve as warning to the American people. The movie was an echo of the warning that President Eisenhower had given to the American people in his 1961 Farewell Address, when he pointed out that the military-industrial complex, which was new to the American way of life, posed a grave threat to the freedoms and democratic processes of the American people. Also, at the height of the Cuban Missile Crisis, JFK’s brother Bobby told the Russians that there was a grave danger of a U.S. military takeover if the matter wasn’t settled soon.
Another possibility, of course, was assassination, thereby elevating to president the vice-president, Lyndon Johnson, who just happened to reject Kennedy’s view on the Cold War and who just happened to embrace the Pentagon’s and CIA’s views on the Cold War. Once he assumed the presidency, Johnson immediately canceled JFK’s plans to withdraw from Vietnam and, working with the Pentagon, came up with the bogus Gulf of Tonkin attack that served as a pretext to expand U.S. involvement in the war. More than 58,000 American men would ultimately die for nothing in Vietnam.
Ever since the Kennedy assassination, no president has dared to tangle with the national-security establishment at a fundamental level. Everyone in Washington knows where the real power of the federal government is centered. (See the excellent book National Security and Double Government by Michael Glennon.) Every president knows that he is expected to operate within the parameters set forth by the national-security establishment and every president since Kennedy has dutifully complied.
Once he assumes the presidency, Donald Trump might be the first president since Kennedy to violate that sacred rule of the national-security establishment. If he does and if he refuses to do what previous presidents have done, it will be interesting to see the outcome. As Sen. Schumer has pointed out, the CIA and other intelligence agencies have “six ways from Sunday” by which to retaliate.
CIA Director John Brennan on Sunday offered a stern parting message for Donald Trump days before the Republican U.S. president-elect takes office, cautioning him against loosening sanctions on Russia and warning him to watch what he says.
When I read Trump’s defenders, such as Daniel Lazare, having to balance their defense with denunciations of Trump, I think the CIA’s propaganda is working. In his article, Lazare asks the rhetorical question, “Is a military coup in the works?” He then goes on to describe the CIA and presstitute coup against Trump unfolding before our eyes.
Having described the unprecedented frame-up of the president-elect of the United States by the CIA and the Western media, Lazare has to square himself with those doing the frame-up:
“This is not to say that the so-called President-elect’s legitimacy is not open to question. . . . Trump is a rightwing blowhard whose absurd babblings about Saudi Arabia, Iran and Yemen reveal a man who is dangerously ignorant about how the world works.”
Note that Lazare goes beyond the CIA and the presstitutes by elevating Trump from someone not sufficiently suspicious of Vladimir Putin to “dangerously ignorant.” I suppose Lazare means dangerously ignorant like Bill and Hillary Clinton, George W. Bush, and Obama. If this is what Lazare means, why is Trump any less qualified to be president than his three most recent predecessors and his opponent in the election?
Of course, Lazare has no idea what he means. He is simply afraid he will be called a “Trump deplorable,” and he stuck in some denuciatory words to ward off his dismissal as just another Russian agent.
At other times I conclude that the CIA is discrediting itself with its fierce and transparently false attack on the president elect. The attack on Trump from the CIA and its media agents at the New York Times, Washington Post, CNN, the network TV channels, the BBC, the Guardian, and every other Western print and TV source with the exception of Fox News, is based on no evidence whatsoever. None of the US 16 intelligence agencies can produce a tiny scrap of evidence. The evidence consists of nothing but constant repetitions of blatant lies fed into the presstitute media by the CIA .
We have witnessed this so many times before: “Tonkin Gulf,” “Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction,” “Iranian nukes,” “Assad’s use of chemical weapons,” “Russian invasion of Ukraine.”
General Smedley Butler, the most decorated Marine in the history of the US military said that he and the US Marines spent their lives defending the interests of the United Fruit Company and some lousy investment of the banks in Latin America. That’s all the attack on Trump is about. Trump is saying that “America first” doesn’t mean a license for America to rape and plunder other countries.
Normalized relations with Russia removes the orchestrated “Russian threat” justification for the $1,000 billion taxpayer dollars taken annually from ordinary Americans and given to the military/security complex via the federal budget.
Trump’s question about the relevance of NATO 25 years after the collapse of NATO’s purpose—the Soviet Union—threatens the power and position not only of the US military/security complex but also of Washington’s European vassals who live high in money and prestige as Washington’s servants. All European governments consist of Washington’s vassals. They are accustomed to supporting Washington’s foreign policy, not having had a policy of their own since World War II.
Trump is taking on a policy world long under the influence of the CIA. Little wonder WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange and a number of other clued-in people say that the CIA will assassinate Trump if he cannot be brought into line with a Western alliance organized for the power and profit of the few.
So what is Trump to do?
There are various alternatives. Trump could fire CIA director John Brennan, have the Attorney General indict him for treason, have the FBI locate all participants in the intelligence agencies and presstitute media who aided and abetted the attempted frame-up of the president-elect of the United States and put them all on trial. This would be the best and surest way for Trump to clean out the snakepit that is Washington, D.C. To call a snakepit a “swamp” is to use an euphemism.
Another alternative is for Trump to make the obvious point that despite the allegations of the CIA and the presstitutes, any hacking that occurred was not the fault of Trump and Russia, but the fault of the US intelligence agencies who were too incompetent to prevent it. Trump’s trump question to the CIA, NSA, FBI is: So, you know the Russians hacked us and you did not prevent it? If you repeat your incompetence, I am going to fire everyone of you incompetents.
The same goes for terror attacks. Trump should ask the intelligence agencies: “How were you so totally incompetent that a handful of Saudi Arabians who could not fly airplanes brought down three WTC skyscrappers and desroyed part of the Pentagon, humiliating the world’s sole super-power in the eyes of the world?”
Trump should make the point that the huge amount of money spent on security does not produce security. The massive security budget cannot prevent hacking of an American election and it cannot prevent humiliating attacks on the SuperPower by a handful of Saudi Arabians operating independently of any intelligence service.
Trump should raise the obvious question: Has the Saudi’s oil trillions purchased the CIA and the presstitutes so that the CIA and the corrupt Western media now serve foreign interests against the United States? The story is being established that the Saudis are responsible or 9/11 and nothing is done about it. Instead the Saudis are supplied with more weapons with which to murder women and children in Yemen.
All of the CIA’s propaganda can be turned against the agency. 9/11 was due to CIA failure, and to nothing else. Putin’s theft of the US presidential election was due to CIA failure, and to nothing else. All the bombings in France, UK, and Germany are due to intelligence failings, and to nothing else, as is the Boston Marathon bombing and every other alleged “terror event.”
I mean, really, the CIA is a sitting duck for Trump. He has every reason to abolish the agency that has traditionally operated in behalf of narrow interests. In his book, The Brothers, Stephen Kinzer documents the use of the CIA and State Department in behalf of the clients of the Dulles brothers’ law firm’s clients. The CIA serves no American purpose, only the private purposes of the ruling elites, who are the real deplorables who have used corrupt Western governments to solidify all income and wealth in a few greedy hands.
There is no reason for Trump to tolerate spurious charges against him by the CIA. At best the CIA is incompetent. At worst the agency is complicit in, or organizer of, terrorist events.
We have arrived at a point in our nation’s history that will define how our future will unfold. There are now only two Roads left to take:
The First Road continues our relentless pursuits of power, control and manipulation that can only spell destruction in our future: destruction of our liberties, destruction of our prosperity and destruction of our moral compass. For too long our CONTROLLERS have lied, cheated and stolen their way to the top only to discover that WE THE PEOPLE have been left behind in the process.
The Second Road completely destroys the global fiat monetary system erasing all forms of false wealth, false power and false governance. It is truly a Creative Destruction Event that has never been witnessed in the history of mankind. All paper and electronic debt forms of wealth will evaporate in the blink of an eye completely leveling the playing field in order to rebuild our monetary structures from the ground up. It is a lesson to be learned the hard way but it is a necessary lesson in order to create a new future for our country. A future built on hard work, complete honesty and good will towards others.
Down this Road our Founding Father’s ideals patiently await our return…
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
Our Country is standing at the Crossroads…the only question left is which Road we will Choose?
He chose the side of the globalist, central bankers, power elite and shadow state.
We Are Getting Worried About Paul Krugman | Zero Hedge
It appears The New York Times’ flip-flopping, hate-mongering, fact-twisting, Keynesian poster-boy Paul Krugman is not coping well with hearing “no” and being ignored, and his tirade last night in Twitter has us gravely concerned for his mental stability, which is ironic given how he began yesterday…