Wednesday 23rd of January 2019

a religious nutcase's viewpoint about the next major conflict...

trump wants to sell more US weapons...

Philip Jenkins is Distinguished Professor of History at Baylor University — a "top Texas Christian University" — and Co-Director for the Program on Historical Studies of Religion in the Institute for Studies of Religion. He is a nutcase who sees the world from the little window of his crumbling religious castle.

He writes:

At the top of the threat table are two nations with nuclear weaponry sufficient not just to harm the United States, but to devastate it utterly - namely, China and Russia. (They would be destroyed in their turn, but that is small compensation).

It would be difficult to choose which of those situations poses the greater danger, and rivalries in the South China Sea could make the Pacific Ocean a lethally dangerous place within the next two to three years. All of these threats feature in a fun article by Robert Farley in a recent issue of National Interest.

A fun article indeed... The ABC should be ashamed of publishing Jenkins opinions as gospel... The main threat if there is one is coming from the elephant in the room — the USA. The hawks in the US see only the world as enemies to be conquered and vassals to keep underfoot. The 320 million Americans (actually only a very small fraction of the US population as the "deep state", but the belief of superiority is nationwide) own more than 70 per cent of the world arsenal in all military format. The US want to dominate the world, including China and Russia. This is the main threat. Not Russia nor China — that to say the least do not want the US format of being vassals in an empire. The US manufacture more lies about the rest of the world in order to conquer and be the self-appointed empire of situations created to deliberately destabilise countries. China and Russia (and Europe for that matter, but Europe is caught in a US money-honey trap) don't like this grand-standing attitude and prefer cooperation. But this would mean that the super-American-ego be restrained... Yes, are we nuts? The USA are the main threat to peace on this little planet.



the pentagon uses other people's money...

Massive works are emerging on our territory both in Northern Italy and Southern Italy. Are we talking about those for which the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport is responsible? Works that has every tongue wagging? Not at all! We’re talking about those thought up by the Pentagon that no one mentions. And yet most of these works are funded with our money and bring with them growing risks for us Italians:

 At Ghedi’s military airport (Brescia): the plan kicks off to spend more than 60 million euro (of Italy’s money), on building the infrastructure for 30 F-35s (US fighter planes), purchased by Italy and for 60 B61-12 (US nuclear bombs).

At the Aviano base (Pordenone): around 5,000 US soldiers are stationed here with the F-16 fighters armed with nuclear bombs (seven of which are currently in Israel for the 2017 Blue Flag drill). Other costly works have been carried out at Italy’s and Nato’s expense.

At Vicenza: 8 million euro has been picked from Italy’s pocket, to “revamp” the Ederle and Del Din barracks. Both these barracks are home to the US Army headquarters in Italy and the 173a air borne Brigade (now deployed in Eastern Europe, Afghanistan and Africa), and to extend the “Village of Peace” where US soldiers live with their families.

At Camp Darby (a US base located in Pisa/Livorno): the construction of a railway infrastructure is beginning in December. The cost of this: 45 million dollars, an expense allocated to the US plus other expenses, allocated to Italy. This infrastructure will enable linking up this base to the Livorno Port and Pisa Airport. This work entails demolishing 1,000 trees in the natural park. Camp Darby is one of the five sites that the US Army has around the world for “stocks stationed in advance” of weapons. The camp contains millions of missiles and projectiles, thousands of tanks and armoured vehicles. From here they are sent to the US Forces in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, with large militarized ships and cargo airplanes.

At Lake Patria (Naples): Nato’s new headquarters, costed at around 200 million euro of which around a quarter is borne by Italy, entails yet more expenditure on Italy’s part. For example, 10 million euro for the new road access close to the Nato Headquarters.

At the Amendola base (Foggia): works have been carried out for an un-quantified cost, to render the runways suitable for the F-35s and the US Predator drones that Italy has bought.

At the Sigonella Naval Air Station, in Sicily: works have been carried out for more than 100 million dollars. These expenses will be borne directly by the United States and NATO and therefore indirectly by Italy as well (following on from its membership of NATO). In addition to providing logistical support to the Sixth Fleet, the base is the launching pad for operations in the Middle East, Africa and Eastern Europe, with airplanes and drones of all types and special forces. As well as this function, it will perform another one: the advanced base of the US “anti-missile shield”, not for defence but for offense, especially against Russia: should it be able to intercept the missiles, the US could probably launch a first nuclear strike neutralizing a reprisal.

At Sigonella: the Jtags is on the verge of being installed. This is a station for satellite reception and transmission from the “shield”. Yet it is no coincidence that with the launch of the fifth satellite, Muos is on the verge of becoming fully operational. Muos is the US satellite system which has one of its four land stations in the vicinity of Niscemi.

On 7 June 2017, General James Dickson, Head of the US Strategic Command, in a Congressional Hearing declared: 
“This year we have secured support from the Italian government to deploy once again, in Europe, the Jtags at the Sigonella Naval Air Station”.

Was the Italian Parliament in the loop of a decision of such strategic significance, that upgrades our country to the front line of an increasingly dangerous nuclear confrontation? Was it at least discussed in the Defence Committees?


Read more:

selling lethal goods...

T​he Trump administration is ​developing a “Buy American” plan that would direct United States military attaches and diplomats to promote American weapons — including fighter jets, drones and warships — to drum up billions of dollars in sales overseas, a report said Monday.

President Trump is expected to announce as soon as February a “whole of government” push to ease export rules on US arms purchases by foreign countries, Reuters reported, citing people familiar with the plan.

The initiative seeks to fulfill Trump’s 2016 campaign pledge to create more US jobs by selling goods and services abroad and reduce the US trade deficit from a six-year high of $50 billion, the report said.

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mad nukular man in the tradition of US presidents...

Arms control advocates have voiced alarm at the new proposal to make smaller, more “usable” nuclear weapons, arguing it makes a nuclear war more likely, especially in view of what they see as Donald Trump’s volatility and readiness to brandish the US arsenal in showdowns with the nation’s adversaries.

The Trump administration plans to loosen constraints on the use of nuclear weapons and develop a new low-yield nuclear warhead for US Trident missiles, according to a former official who has seen the most recent draft of a policy review.

Jon Wolfsthal, who was special assistant to Barack Obama on arms control and nonproliferation, said the new nuclear posture review prepared by the Pentagon, envisages a modified version of the Trident D5 submarine-launched missiles with only part of its normal warhead, with the intention of deterring Russia from using tactical warheads in a conflict in Eastern Europe.

The new nuclear policy is significantly more hawkish that the posture adopted by the Obama administration, which sought to reduce the role of nuclear weapons in US defence.


The NPR also expands the circumstances in which the US might use its nuclear arsenal, to include a response to a non-nuclear attack that caused mass casualties, or was aimed at critical infrastructure or nuclear command and control sites.

The nuclear posture review (NPR), the first in eight years, is expected to be published after Donald Trump’s State of the Union speech at the end of January.

Read more:


up the ante...

Everyone is talking about the explosive book on Trump, packed with sensational revelations such as the following: how Donald sets his quiff; how he and his wife sleep in separate bedrooms; what those in the White House corridors whisper about him once his back is turned; what his eldest son did (he held a meeting a Russian lawyer at the Trump Tower in New York, betrayed his homeland and rigged the results of the presidential elections).

However hardly anyone is talking about a book the content of which is truly explosive. This book was released a little earlier and signed by President Donald Trump: the “US National Security Strategy”. It is a periodic document drafted by heavyweights from various administrations, notably from the military powers. Compared with the previous one published by the Obama Administration in 2015, the Trump Administration US National Security contains elements of substantive continuity. The fundamental concept that, to “put America first so that it is secure, prosperous and free”, we need to have “the strength and willingness to exercise US leadership in the world”. This concept expressed by the Obama Administration (as by previous administrations) is as follows: “To guarantee the safety of her people, America has to lead from a position of strength”.

Compared with the Obama Administration’s strategic document (talking of Russian aggression to Ukraine” and of “an alert for the military modernization of China and its growing presence in Asia”, the document prepared by the Trump Administration is far more explicit: 
“China and Russia challenge American power, influence and interests, attempting to erode American security and prosperity.

In this way, the authors of the strategic document reveal the cards showing what is really at stake for the United States: 
- the growing risk of losing its economic supremacy when faced with the emergence of new state and social subjects, especially China and Russia. The latter are adopting measures to reduce the dollar’s predominance. This allows the United States to maintain a dominant role, printing dollars the value of which are based not on the US’s real economic capacity but on the fact that they are used as a global currency.”

“China and Russia – the strategic documents emphasizes – want to shape a world antithetical to U.S. values and interests. China seeks to displace the United States in the Pacific region, expand the reaches of its state-driven economic model. Russia seeks to restore its great power status and establish spheres of influence near its borders. Russia aims to weaken U.S. influence in the world and to divide us from our allies and partners”.

This then leads on to what is tantamount to a true and proper declaration of war: “We with all tools of national power to ensure that the regions of the world are not dominated by one power,” that is to ensure that all are dominated by the United States. Clearly, among “all the instruments”, you will find the military instrument. This is an instrument with which the United States has maintained till now a clear superiority. As emphasized in 2015, in the Obama Administration’s strategic document: 
“we possess a military whose might, technology and geostrategic reach is unrivalled in human history”; we have Nato, the strongest alliance in the world”. So the “US National Security Strategy”, signed by Trump involves Italy and the other countries in Nato, which are called to strengthen the Eastern flank against “Russian aggression”, and to allocate at least 2% of their GDP to military expenditure and 20% of this to purchasing new forces and arms. Europe is going to war but this is not talked about in the course of televised debates: this is not an issue for the electoral campaign. 


Read more:

Europe is going to war but this is not talked about in the course of televised debates (bold by Gus)

drumming the drums of war, hot and cold...

Democrats have “joined hands” with neoconservative policies in sensationalizing Russia as an imminent security threat: a trope neocons worked decades to develop and can finally watch mature into a full-blown international scandal, journalist and author Max Blumenthal told Radio Sputnik.

"Obama ridiculed Mitt Romney for making Russia into an enemy," Jim Cavanaugh, editor of The Polemicist, told Radio Sputnik's Loud & Clear Wednesday. During the 2012 presidential debates, Obama blasted his Republican opponent for calling Moscow the top geopolitical threat facing America. "The 1980s are calling now for their foreign policy back, because the Cold War has been over for 20 years," Obama remarked at the time.

Now, Democrats "have absorbed the neocons," Cavanaugh said.

"If you look back to the 1990s, there was an atmosphere of triumphalism in the US among the national security establishment. The neoconservatives, at the same time, seemed disturbed by the fact that a national enemy hadn't emerged," Blumenthal told Loud & Clear hosts Brian Becker and John Kiriakou.

"If you look back at the 90s blockbusters, you have films that are about fighting aliens because we hadn't developed [a new enemy] — I think in ‘Independence Day' — the US actually joins with the Iraqi Air Force to fight aliens."

But then in the 2000s, The Project for a New American Century broke onto the scene, embodying "the effort to find a new enemy. They focused on the Middle East. But PNAC was a collection of neoconservatives that eventually developed into the Foreign Policy Institute, funded by Paul Singer, the major neocon billionaire and vulture capitalist," Blumenthal said.

One of the fellows at the Foreign Policy Institute, Jamie Kirchik, "helped engineer Liz Wahl's high-profile resignation on TV over the annexation of Crimea," the journalist said. "This was the opening shot of the new Cold War."

Later, Kirchik left the Foreign Policy Institute and promptly joined the Brookings Institution. Shortly after joining Brookings, Kirchik appeared at an obscure, early morning panel "railing against RT, demanding that RT be registered as a foreign agent," Blumenthal said.

"He claimed that RT regularly hosts Holocaust deniers and conspiracy theorists, which is false," he added. At the same panel, Kirchik presented a paper outlining the case for why Sputnik and RT should be registered as foreign agents.

Finally, the neocon plan to demonize Russia has actualized, and Kirchik's proposal has been put into practice by the US government.

On Wednesday, Sputnik News' editorial practices were defamed in a report from the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, accompanied by a letter from Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD). Meanwhile, the Justice Department demanded Sputnik News' US partner, RIA Global LLC, register under the Foreign Agents Registration Act.

Read more:

the warmongers idiots rule the world...

The United States and its NATO allies are facing an existential threat. But the threat has nothing to do with Russia, China, or any other external “enemy” for that matter.

The West’s own worst enemy is itself. Or more precisely, the intellectual bankruptcy of its political and military leaders and their dominant public discourse.

This week Nobel literature laureate Mario Vargas Llosa reportedly condemned the US for descending into "political and intellectual poverty." He said: "The consequences are predictable: China and Russia are taking the positions that the US is withdrawing from, gaining political and economic influence."

Perhaps the clearest expression of Western intellectual impoverishment and dishonesty is the relentless Russophobia touted by American and European politicians, military leaders, think-tanks and mainstream corporate news media.

Hardly a week goes by without repetition of this tired old trope alleging that Russia is a threat to Western societies. Russian President Vladimir Putin is portrayed as some kind of "evil genius" hellbent on undermining the West – without a plausible explanation ever being given for why the Russian leader would harbor such alleged dastardly designs.

And if it’s not Russia, it is some other supposed malevolent foreign force, such as China, Iran or North Korea. Yes, the latter has a nuclear weapons program. But the Western public rarely hears that North Korea has embarked on developing these weapons due to decades of warmongering threats from Washington and its allies.

Arguably, though, it is Russophobia that most preoccupies official discourse in the US and Europe.

For the past year and more, Russia is accused of "interfering" in US and European elections, "subverting" democratic processes, and "sowing divisions" among allies with "fake news."


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the US is killing innocent people with drones...

US drone strikes in Yemen have tripled under the Trump administration, as the US targets Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula while at the same time providing support to ally Saudi Arabia in its attacks there, a new study shows. 

“The Trump administration's subservience to Saudi Arabia's military adventurism in Yemen has lead to 8x the drone assassination rate of Obama,” WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange wrote on Twitter. “Most killed are civilians. Obama, in turn, had 10x the drone kills of Bush.”

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read from top...

a wannabe banana republic strongman...

Donald Trump has ordered the Pentagon to plan a military parade that would see soldiers marching and tanks rolling down the streets of Washington, it was reported on Tuesday.

The move was instantly criticised, with one veterans’ group comparing the president to “a wannabe banana republic strongman”.

Trump is seeking a grand parade similar to the Bastille Day celebration in Paris, according to the Washington Post. He outlined the plan at a meeting at the Pentagon on 18 January that included defense secretary Jim Mattis and joint chiefs of staff chairman General Joseph Dunford, the paper said, citing an unnamed military official.

“The marching orders were: I want a parade like the one in France,” the official told the Post. “This is being worked at the highest levels of the military.”

The White House confirmed that an event is in the works, though it did not offer further details. “President Trump is incredibly supportive of America’s great service members who risk their lives every day to keep our country safe,” press secretary Sarah Sanders said. “He has asked the Department of Defense to explore a celebration at which all Americans can show their appreciation.”

Trump, who did not serve in the Vietnam war after receiving five draft deferments, has long spoken of his admiration for tough military figures such as General George Patton and frequently makes reference to “my generals”.

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Had Donald not evaded the draft, he could have got killed in Vietnam and we would not have the pleasure of his fabulous Presidency now. Bush Junior was in the same boat I believe, except he did a bit of airforce duties, possibly as a broomstick manager...


impressed by one on bastille day ...

redbluewhite and blue

The military parade was planned for November 10, which is the anniversary of the end of World War I. US President Donald Trump requested the parade after he was impressed by one on Bastille Day during his visit to France in July 2017.

The US Defense Department said in a statement on Thursday that a military parade requested by Trump that had been planned in Washington has been postponed until next year.

"The Department of Defense and White House have been planning a parade to honor America's military veterans and commemorate the centennial of World War I," Pentagon Spokesman Col. Rob Manning said in a press release. "We originally targeted November 10, 2018 for this event but have now agreed to explore opportunities in 2019."

A Defense Department official with firsthand knowledge of an assessment done by the Pentagon and its interagency partners told CNBC earlier that the parade was estimated to cost at least $92 million.


The ABC News said in July, citing a US military official familiar with the planning that between 5,000 and 7,000 troops could have marched in November in Washington, DC, to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I.

In addition to troops, the parade would have featured a hundred vehicles, an equal number of horses and 50 aircraft.


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Read from top. Note the colours of the French flag got purposely muddled up into a "RussianFrenchy" smoke as the French were winning the soccer in Russia...