Aleppo is defended by Assad, not attacked

WAR – what is it good for? The military and weapons industry, of course. That’s what they do. When you have trained to become a chef, architect or musician your natural desire is to have people who want feeding, housing or entertaining. Soldiers are no different. Without wars there is no place to properly test new weapons and the skills of those who are trained to kill people. War is where soldiers get promoted through the ranks. They like it, as do the makers of death-dealing weaponry. So when the military industrial complex has its hands on the controls of a nation we can be horrified, but not surprised, that reasons to make war are fabricated. We don’t want to believe that fellow human beings could behave like this simply to get rich and powerful, but they can, and have done through history. Hundreds of thousands may die and millions be displaced by their crimes against humanity. They don’t care.

The war in Syria was planned long before any shots were fired. It is as phony as the WMD lies that initiated war upon Iraq, and as unrelated to “bringing democracy” as the war that turned a stable Libya into a mess for its people, a training ground for terrorists and a launch point for thousands of refugees fleeing the chaos we brought to the region. The Syrian conflict is NOT a civil war, but a foreign invasion, supported and led by the US, Saudi Arabia, Israel, Qatar and other interested parties.

Most of the news we are fed about Aleppo is lies. Did you know that 70% of its residents supported the Syrian government, according to a rebel commander in 2012? 600,000 residents fled eastern Aleppo to the safety of government secured western Aleppo when the so-called rebels (mostly foreign fighters) attacked in July 2012. The estimated 200,000 trapped in the east today are prevented by the insurgents from fleeing to safety. It is these so-called rebels who turned once-peaceful eastern Aleppo into a war zone, which is why civilians are getting killed. The White Helmets are not what you imagine, either. The so-called Rebels are good at PR, trained by their Western advisors.

We are barraged with talk of nasty “barrel bombs.” These explosives dropped from the air are, essentially, bombs not made by the likes of  LockheedBoeing and BAE Systems. All bombs tend to kill or injure those in a building being destroyed. Respectable branded bombs can cost anything from $100,000 (Hellfire) to $14 million (the MOAB) apiece (average cost of a US airstrike is $2.5 million ). To those at the receiving end, many of the branded products can be even more horrific than barrel bombs.

Top U.S. arms makers are straining to meet surging demand” for their lethal ordnance as a result of the various conflicts supported or prompted by western foreign policy in Syria and the Middle East. Its boom time and they’re lovin’ it. The Syrian conflict could have been over in 2013 had the US and its coalition not actively fanned the flames of war with men and munitions. It is all done for the Syrian people, of course.  Today they are still fanning those flames, seeking to escalate and prolong the conflict.

The western military industrial complex doesn’t really give a damn whether wars are won or lost anymore. When the US lost in Vietnam and abandoned mission in Iraq its generals did not surrender their swords and America was not invaded. Syria is or was a big stepping stone on the road to bringing down Iran. It was all planned ahead and paid for with our taxes.

It was the US that scuppered the recent cease-fire in its desperation to keep the conflict going. They spin their propaganda, demonizing Assad to justify military intervention. The ploy is to protect the Syrian people from his tyranny (ring any bells?). The aim is to prevent him defeating the so-called rebels intent upon taking over Aleppo against the wishes of its residents. That could bring peace – a major setback for Islamic State and the military industrial complex, putting a brake on America’s grand demolition plan for the Middle East.

This gripping piece by Robert F. Kennedy shows us the history of US/Syrian relations and shows  recommended interview clearly explains the situation in Syria.

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This book explores the alternative. It is possible for us to live in peace without slaughtering each other in its pursuit.





Peace in Syria – nearly there?

A cessation of hostilities is set to commence in Syria at sunset on Monday 12th Sept. The US and Russia have come up with a plan. It is excellent news but makes a mockery of the idea that this was a ‘civil war,’ when negotiations take place between outside nations.

In October last year, when Russia entered the Syrian conflict, I predicted that it would bring an end to this horrific war. I re-iterated this in March, when Islamic State were kicked out of Palmyra.  At the time it looked to me as if some key players were primarily interested in conflict and as it Russia actually wanted to end the war, not support the arms industry. It now looks as though they have.

Before Russia, there were countless forces on the scene, like when a bunch of drunks in a club pile into a fight that started between just two of them. When it’s escalated into a brawl it can be difficult to discern who is on what side.  After a year this particular brawl was going nowhere and in danger of fizzling out when Secretary of State Hillary Clinton arrived with sacks of cocaine and a tanker of Jack Daniels – figuratively speaking, of course.

Why was Hillary so keen to stoke-up this conflict, pumping in loadsa money and expertise? Thanks to Edward Snowden we now see that it was being done at the behest of Israel, as a tactical move against Iran. As she put it in her leaked memo, “The best way to help Israel deal with Iran’s growing nuclear capability is to help the people of Syria overthrow the regime of Bashar Assad.” The majority of people in Syria supported Assad before this conflict began and still do. Our ‘side’ was against Assad and we were conditioned to see him an insufferably evil tyrant to be deposed, despite the fact that there was no exodus from Syria before this conflict erupted. Now, we should see a reverse exodus as refugees return to their homeland and rebuild, as humans do.

Syria is a beautiful country and the one from which my father’s parents emigrated to America. The images we see are all of death and destruction but much of Syria has not been so terribly affected. Normal street life and night life and village life does go on but pictures of it don’t sell newspapers. Syrians are smart, industrious, and equipped for the task of rebuilding their nation.  Parts of London were obliterated by the Blitz in World War 2 but most of it survived intact and the city rose again. But why do we have to go through this shit?

We have been suffering at the hands of psychopaths who get to the top of our governing system for a few millennia now. The earliest state was conceived as a means to transfer money from the many to the few, because the few have the power to take it by force, having passed laws saying they can. Today’s state still transfers wealth, still upwards, despite a fraction of it getting sprinkled back. Whether by ballot or bullet, how rulers acquire power is irrelevant in the broader scheme of things. If they survived in their seized territory for long enough, Islamic State would get their seat at the United Nations. Rulers will from time to time be fighting over who rules which resources, including us, and when they do, we are the collateral damage. They are not a necessary evil. I feel a rant coming on, but since I wrote a book, there’ll be no need for that.

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From the BBC 

Russia and the US have announced an agreement on Syria starting with a “cessation of hostilities” from sunset on Monday. Under the plan, the Syrian government will end combat missions in specified areas held by the opposition. Russia and the US will establish a joint centre to combat so-called Islamic State and al-Nusra fighters.

The announcement follows talks between US Secretary of State John Kerry and his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov. The plan would need both the regime and opposition “to meet their obligations”, Mr Kerry said in Geneva. The opposition had indicated it was prepared to comply with the plan, he said, provided the Syrian government “shows it is serious”.

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John Pilger tells how UK, US, France create and feed upon terror in Mideast.

Award-winning journalist John Pilger pulls no punches in this riveting and clear analysis of how Western interests have fostered terrorism in the Middle East, directly and indirectly supplying their enemy Daesh/ISIL with military hardware. Our governments bear clear responsibility for the conflict in Syria, which has roots in Libya and Iraq. Pilger suggests that if the media had done its job and questioned propaganda three disastrous wars may have been prevented. This interview is from RT, not from British or US channels, which self-censor anything that counters official propaganda.

John Pilger, interviewed on RT by Afshin Rattansi, 26 Nov 2015

The military industrial complex that held the keys to American power after World War 2 was in trouble when the Cold War ended (as I mention in my book). The global War on Drugs never quite filled this conflict gap, though it did well for the prison industry. So the rise in terrorism brought these conflict-loving people the enemy of their dreams; an enemy that delivers the prospect of endless war and justification to take away our privacy and freedom.

The State Is Out Of Date, We Can Do It Better – from any book seller in print, or download a digital version at cup-of-tea prices. (for US, click)

Syria – is the end in sight?

Go Russia Go!

At last there may be an end in sight to the disaster that Western foreign policy has landed upon Syria, formerly one of the most stable and secular nations in the Middle East. One also with a strong military force that held stocks of unused chemical weapons primarily to counter the threat of Israel’s nuclear stockpile. It initially seemed clear that Assad had not used Sarin in a fight he was already winning at Ghouta, a suburb of Damascus where his soldiers were stationed.

After the propaganda machines weighed in though, you could be forgiven for thinking Assad would do something so incredibly stupid, soon after Obama declared use of chemical weapons to be America’s “red line.” Assad isn’t stupid. We should follow the money and ask who benefited? The rebel terrorists and the arms industry profited as countless millions of taxpayers’ money was poured into funding the “moderate” opposition, prolonging a conflict that was nearing its end. That opposition, the Free Syrian Army is now little more than a name, but one we hear more of than the hundreds of other militias in the field, predominantly Islamic.

If successful, the so-called revolution that we have been fanning and funding would inevitably lead to the absorption of Syria into the expanding Islamic State, a body that was underwritten by Western money and armaments, now supplemented by oil and taxation revenues from conquered lands. Islamic State are not stupid either, just a new and very upstart state. Should they succeed, it would not be revolution, but conquest. Western efforts to combat IS have been singularly ineffective, with the world’s mightiest war machine unable or unwilling to halt their progress. There is little doubt that if Assad falls Islamic State would rapidly incorporate or eliminate every other faction in the fight, destroy any remaining ancient monuments and be irreversibly en route to one day claiming a seat at the United Nations.

Is this where we want to go?

Is it not a strange turn of affairs that tough-guy Vladimir Putin, the West’s current faputin syriavourite bad guy, should be the only world leader to realize this is not a good place to go? He may be a gangster, but at least he’s his own gangster and not manipulated by the dark shadowy forces of the military industrial complex that American President Eisenhower warned us of and Kennedy strongly condemned. In Sept 2013 Putin narrowly stopped the US from going on a Syrian bombing spree (prompted by allegations of chemical weapons use) through getting Assad’s agreement to clear out and hand over Syria’s entire chemical weapons stock. Clever move, and one hugely frustrating to those who control the US.

So now Russia steps into the arena, openly and at the request of the legitimate Syrian government. They realize that terrorists are terrorists – these are not revolutionaries seeking democracy and would all meld into IS if Assad fell. Why screw around playing one side against the other, unless you are manipulated by those conflict-loving forces of which Kennedy and Eisenhower spoke? That’s the positive side of being a gangster boss politician – you’re in nobody’s pockets but your own and see no benefit in waging war for the sake of war itself. Even in Crimea, the minimal fighting stopped once Russia’s objective was achieved. Conflict for conflict’s sake is not on the Russian agenda. Curious how we rail about Russian jets straying into Turkish airspace while our jets bomb hospitals and our close ally Saudi Arabia kills thousands of civilians in Yemen with the weapons we supply.

Yes it’s strange for me, a passionate advocate of non-violence to be rallying behind military effort by a powerful state. As do most, I long to see the war over so that refugees can return to rebuild their lives, and believe Russian action could achieve this goal. When we watched refugees flooding into Germany they were fleeing the fighting, NOT politics or religious persecution. Most of them would love to go home. Human beings are amazing animals, able to rebuild lives, towns and cities, as did Europe and Asia after the last big war. Hiroshima and Dresden thrive today. We can do it.

The fighting has to stop.
Full power to you Russia.
History will be grateful.

 – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Peace is not defined by the absence of conflict.

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Beheadings – they’re just so yesterday

Whilst beheadings are undoubtedly savage and brutal the fundamental problem is that they are terribly old-fashioned. Today, civilized nations blow people up, obliterate them with drones, riddle them with bullets, and execute them with chemicals cocktails. Many of those killed with hi-tech weapons die slowly in excruciating pain, their bodies ripped to pieces. But this is somehow okay since it is the modern way and done from a distance – however savage, brutal and indiscriminate the results. Most of the weaponry involved comes from the guardians of peace and democracy in America and Britain, with average cost-per-kill running into tens of thousands of dollars per “insurgent,” millions by some estimates.

The drums of full-spectrum war are beating once again, stimulated by outrage and hysteria over this single video. Bearing in mind the fallacy of WMD it would behove us to see this war-worthy video but no, we are banned from doing so, with the mere viewing of it in the UK declared a potential terrorist act. Let me tell you right now that no execution takes place in the video, which is 4 minutes 32 seconds of propaganda. The other eight seconds of the video show a small knife being pressed against James Foley’s throat without drawing blood or cries of pain, then shifts to a prone headless corpse (or mannequin) with a severed head sitting on its chest looking almost as realistic as those in movies and TV series. James Foley may well have been killed, but it certainly did not happen on camera. Many who have viewed the video comment on the absence of copious blood, the green screen look, the omission of a neck on decapitated “body” or head, and even differences between the face of  this James Foley and the one we see in previous television interviews.

If journalist Foley is reading from an Islamic State script, then he does so without notes and appears to have spent considerable time rehearsing IS’s message to the world. He doesn’t falter or show any sign of fear and included messages to his family and his brother, a serving air force pilot. It is a crude but effective piece of propaganda and with the “execution” edited out is far less gruesome than the killing of innocents we see in other Islamic State actions, the Israeli bombardment of Gaza, the Syrian civil war, and even the cold-blooded shootings by US police in Ferguson and elsewhere. It may sway the minds of young Muslim men looking for purpose and excitement, with its twisted message being no more distorted than some of the blatant mendacity fed to us by our media – mendacity that led to phony wars killing over a hundred thousand innocents. Though difficult for a Westerner to find online (check LiveLeak), it must be easy for those searching in the Arab-language web.

The banned video is, of course, the propaganda of an evil and despicable group who have beheaded thousands of men and children, putting their heads on sticks, and abducting their wives and mothers. I despair at the appearance of this gruesome new player on the world stage; a player armed with the latest US hardware and rich with billions of US dollars seized in Iraq. For those who make the arms, of course, this is all good for business, as they effectively supply both sides in the conflicts of the Middle East. They will be rubbing their hands all the way to their bankster backers.

Responding to the beheading, Obama tells us emphatically that “no faith teaches people to massacre innocents.” Correction Mr President, your faith does. Let us briefly dip into the Bible, believed by fundamentalists of Judaism and Christianity to contain the indisputable word of God. Muslims credit this too, except for those bits that differ from the Quran. Perhaps this selection from Deuteronomy will help us better understand both the mentality of the Islamic State and that of fundamentalist Christians in the US who see themselves as players in  catastrophic events visited upon the Holy Land and predicted by the Bible.

Deuteronomy 13:12-16 New International Version (NIV)
If you hear it said about one of the towns the Lord your God is giving you to live in that troublemakers have arisen among you and have led the people of their town astray, saying, “Let us go and worship other gods” (gods you have not known), then you must inquire, probe and investigate it thoroughly. And if it is true and it has been proved that this detestable thing has been done among you, you must certainly put to the sword all who live in that town. You must destroy it completely, both its people and its livestock. You are to gather all the plunder of the town into the middle of the public square and completely burn the town and all its plunder as a whole burnt offering to the Lord your God. That town is to remain a ruin forever, never to be rebuilt.

If we seriously want to neutralize the threat posed by Islamic State then let us join with the well-organized forces of President Assad of Syria, a secular leader. It was Western efforts to bring down his government through aiding its Islamist enemies that gave new wings to Islamic State, originally born out of the turmoil in Iraq. Their brutal slaughter of innocents appalls me, whatever means they employ, as does the slaughter of innocents in Gaza, Ukraine, Syria, and wherever factions fight for ownership of the right to take money from a nation’s people and tell them how to think and what to do. It’s the same old stuff that has been playing out on the world’s stage since Sargon of Akkad started the ball rolling around 2250 BCE.

Is there anything we really cannot manage without a top-down coercive state running it, other than protecting us from other varieties of themselves? Many are rightly concerned about corporations running the state, though one could argue that it might be preferable to being ruled by fundamentalist Muslims of the Islamic State, or a military junta, or the sort of Christians who burn heretics. But as long as we accept the state as some kind of a “necessary evil” then somebody will always be calling the shots and we will always be arguing over whether we prefer cat shit to dog shit to chicken shit.

There is another way and we already self-govern the majority of our social structures. Civilization preceded, by a few thousand years, the top-down state that Sargon initiated, and has often survived its collapse. Humans are good at self-governing when they are well-connected, doing it with feedback loops instead of threats and sticks.

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The US media hawks linked to arms industry

In The Washington Post

“Military analysts who made frequent media appearances during the recent debate over a possible U.S. strike on Syria have ties to defense contractors and other firms with stakes in the outcome, according to a new study, but those links were rarely disclosed.The report by the Public Accountability Initiative, a nonprofit watchdog, details appearances by 22 commentators who spoke out during this summer’s Syria debate in large media outlets and currently have industry connections that the group says can pose conflicts of interest.”  full story

The Arms Industry Toilet, chapter 22

“The fundamental difference between the arms industry and the majority of other commercial enterprises is that the value of military product is negative. This is an important concept. Large sums of society’s money are spent manufacturing weapon products that we hope never to use. Assuming the weapons are not put to use, then considerable further sums are wasted looking after them, updating them, destroying old stocks, and maintaining a force of people ready and willing to use them if ever ordered to do so. And even though one country might seem to profit from selling these items to another, our global society as a whole is dragged down by the weight of their uselessness and literally torn apart if they are put to use. For if and when these products are used, an even greater cost becomes apparent. When weapon products are deployed they tend to dramatically decrease the value of other products that we already possess, including our lives.”

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Powerful puppet meets tough gangster

ObamPutinThis current cover of “The Week” is very apt. And now, with an intended attack on Syria looking foiled, it makes sense that a Russian gangster should be the one to out maneouver a US president reading from his autocue.  Unlike the shadowy puppet-masters of Western governments, even gangsters spare a thought for the world their children will inherit, knowing that unnecessary wars are both dangerous and damaging.  The banking, military, and arms establishment take a different viewpoint. Their industry would grind to a halt if armaments were never put to use, prompting replacements bought with bank loans by both sides.

With Putin at least, the nature of the beast is clear; the man is a ruthless boss who brooks no opposition, and twists the justice system as he plays the autocrat. Yet he is able to exercise his own thoughts and appears to be in control, rather than under control.  That increases the likelihood of rational actions reflecting the old-fashioned notion that a military is there to protect us from external aggressors. This boldly challenges the existing paradigm that wars of aggression are there to protect the profits of the Military Industrial Complex. We live in interesting times.From “A Terminal Toolbag” Chapter 10

The world’s military pow­ers were distraught when the Cold War ended, a situation helpfully resolved by invading Iraq and Afghanistan to fight terrorism and gift democracy. Consequently, terrorism is breaking out all over, serving to renew the fear and convince us to accept more shackles to feel safe. It’s straight out of George Orwell’s seminal book, 1984, with vague undefined enemies whose allegiances are always shifting. Our constantly cooked up fear of terrorists has provided the excuse to move the “cameras” inside our homes too, as the state gives itself the right to snoop through our phone calls, emails, and digital trails.”

Murdoch madness…who gives a damn?

This whole Murdoch business is such a trivial drama. Sure, he’s an excellent candidate for thMurdocke “Most Hated Magnate” prize but should we really give a flying fu*k about phone hacking by newspapers? It’s primarily prompted by OUR insatiable appetite for bullshit, whether it’s about the private lives of personalities or that of famous victims like Millie, the murdered schoolgirl. And now it will stop (in the private sector, at least) and it hasn’t exactly scarred the progress of civilization. Nice to see the Murdochs sweating though, it must be said.

Meanwhile: The baseless concocted wars in Iraq and Afghanistan proceed with little public or media concern beyond reporting every death of ‘one of ours.’ The Afghans had nothing to do with the Twin Towers and Saddam Hussein was an enemy of Al-Qaeda. Recent calculation show that drone strikes in Pakistan kill over 100 civilians for every targeted Drone
combatant. In WWI one civilian died for every ten soldiers. In WWII it was one to one. Vietnam was seven to three. In Iraq it is ten of us killed for every one soldier. This is not good. And why is it that targeted domestic homes are always called “compounds?” Depleted uranium weapons are at use in Libya, as they were in Iraq, where the consequence is a 10-15 fold increase in birth defects and a growing cancer rate from soil that will remain contaminated for over 100,000 years. Occupying an entire nation on false premises represents quite a high level of bad behaviour. European and American economies are imploding as a result of borrowing by states that stake our future productivity as collateral against the loans. US Debt is 15 trillion dollars. Amongst much else, that borrowing provides funds for fighting unnecessary wars in foreign countries.Thousand of us are dying every year as a result of continued inclusion of trans fats (hydrogenated oils) in our foodstuffs. It is acknowledged that there is no safe dose of these dangerous additives but they are still legally in use, and widely.

Three nuclear reactors are in an uncontained meltdown in Japan, continuing tFukuo release radioactive materials into the environment. They may stop the releases in ten years or so, maybe never. Much of northern Japan will remain uninhabitable for generations. Many millions throughout the world will suffer cancer for generations to come as a result of this catastrophe.

We are being denied the right to take responsibility for our own health by the suppression of our right to freely choose what route we take to healing.

Modern war targets people, not soldiers.

War is getting worse, not better.

Used to mainly be soldiers killing soldiers.Now it’s mainly soldiers killing innocent civilians.

In WW I civilian casualties were 10% of the total

In WW II civilian casualties were 50% of the total

In Vietnam civilian casualties were 70% of the total

In Iraq civilian  casualties  are  90% of the total

Why why why?

Perhaps the traditional ‘objectives’ of war have become less relevant. Used to be you fought a war to steal territory, plunder resources, impose religion, bring an ideology, or any combination thereof. The objective was to win the war and satisfy the objective. This usually involved trained militants in combat with each other, one eventually overcoming the other and doing/taking their thing. The war ends. William conquered and the fighting stopped.

Today, it looks like the prime objective of war is to maintain a ‘healthy’ Military Industrial Complex by expending weaponry. This is achieved through a state of perpetual war. Basra
With an undefined and loosely knit enemy, and no large bases or troop concentrations to aim for it is inevitable that civilians will be the main victims when ordinance is exploded. Nobody bombs and attacks empty unpopulated space, except for once-off destruction of infrastructure.

Division was created between Muslims, and the resistance, trained by the USA to fight Russians, is more successful at killing civilians than armour-clad American fighting machines.

With some 750 – 1000 military bases located in over 150 countries worldwide, we can appreciate the USA’s investment in conflict. Between them, the members of NATO account for another 200 bases worldwide. Russia keeps six bases in former Soviet states. China, the world’s largest nation has, by contrast, no military bases located in other countries. India, the world’s second largest population, has one base in Tajikistan. The Arab nations, the South, Central American and Canadian nations, the Africans, Far Eastern, and Antipodean nations have next to no bases and less combined military power than Israel.

The illegal Iraqi invasion could not have happened without that network of US and NATO bases. The bases serve to proliferate weapons, increase violence and undermine international instability. It’s obvious really, as it is during war that soldiers rise through the ranks, and that personnel and weapons systems are tested by fire.Aran13l

Yet is it any surprise that those economies ‘investing’ in military bases are the same ones sinking into economic collapse, whilst those who do not flush their wealth down the military toilet begin to boom? I dive right into this subject in the online chapter titled “The Arms Industry Toilet,” from my first book Uncommon Sense, the State is Out of Date.

What to do? First and foremost, do not let them thrive on our fear. That is their power. Then get the book.