What I find most interesting is that reports are circulating (with increasing frequency) of ISIS filtering back into liberated areas. Some blame corruption, others lack of followup security.
|English: Mocha, Yemen, 1996 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
Kicking Flynn out of his office has hurt Trump. His standing is diminished. The efforts against Flynn, mainly by the "deep state" in the intelligence agencies, were designed to change Trump's declared foreign policy aims. They worked. Yesterday the White House spokesperson said:
President Trump has made it very clear that he expects the Russian government to deescalate violence in the Ukraine and return Crimea.
Today Trump tweeted:
Donald J. Trump Verified account @realDonaldTrump
Crimea was TAKEN by Russia during the Obama Administration. Was Obama too soft on Russia?
4:42 AM - 15 Feb 2017
That is a position Trump had not preciously taken. "Return Crimea" is a no-no to any current and future Russian government. If Trump insists on this the prospective détente is already dead.
Several writers along the political spectrum point out that this show of raw power by the "intelligence community" is a great danger.
Damon Linker in The Week:
The whole episode is evidence of the precipitous and ongoing collapse of America's democratic institutions — not a sign of their resiliency. Flynn's ouster was a soft coup (or political assassination) engineered by anonymous intelligence community bureaucrats. The results might be salutary, but this isn't the way a liberal democracy is supposed to function.
In a liberal democracy, how things happen is often as important as what happens. Procedures matter. So do rules and public accountability. The chaotic, dysfunctional Trump White House is placing the entire system under enormous strain. That's bad. But the answer isn't to counter it with equally irregular acts of sabotage — or with a disinformation campaign waged by nameless civil servants toiling away in the surveillance state.
Robert Perry at Consortium News:
Flynn’s real “offense” appears to be that he favors détente with Russia rather than escalation of a new and dangerous Cold War. Trump’s idea of a rapprochement with Moscow – and a search for areas of cooperation and compromise – has been driving Official Washington’s foreign policy establishment crazy for months and the neocons, in particular, have been determined to block it.
The neocons and liberal hawks also hated Flynn because – as director of the Defense Intelligence Agency – he oversaw a prescient 2012 analysis that foresaw that their support for the Syrian insurgency would give rise to “a declared or undeclared Salafist principality in eastern Syria.”
Flynn’s resignation and its acceptance by Trump also prove that these tactics work and that “tough-guy” Trump is not immune to them.
The so-called permanent government of Washington and its complicit mainstream media – what some call the Deep State – have taught Trump a lesson and have learned a lesson, too. They now can be expected to redouble their march toward war and more war, ironically with progressives and leftists in tow.
Justin Raimondo at Antiwar:
Flynn was in the crosshairs of the War Party because he’s the most prominent of those around Trump who advocated for détente with Russia. Also, his somewhat loopy belief that Islam, per se, is a pernicious political ideology rather than a religion, made him a natural enemy of the pro-Saudi faction within the intelligence community, which had long worked with Riyadh to, among other things, overthrow the government of Syrian strongman Bashar al-Assad.
The Flynn resignation is just the beginning. As one Politico writer put it, it won’t stop there. They’ll move on to new targets, and they won’t rest until they’ve bagged their real target: the President of the United States
Eli Lake for Bloomberg:
[F]or a White House that has such a casual and opportunistic relationship with the truth, it's strange that Flynn's "lie" to Pence would get him fired. It doesn't add up.
A better explanation here is that Flynn was just thrown under the bus.
Normally intercepts of U.S. officials and citizens are some of the most tightly held government secrets. This is for good reason. Selectively disclosing details of private conversations monitored by the FBI or NSA gives the permanent state the power to destroy reputations from the cloak of anonymity. This is what police states do.
In the end, it was Trump's decision to cut Flynn loose. In doing this he caved in to his political and bureaucratic opposition.
Nunes told me Monday night that this will not end well. "First it's Flynn, next it will be Kellyanne Conway, then it will be Steve Bannon, then it will be Reince Priebus," he said. Put another way, Flynn is only the appetizer. Trump is the entree.
Trump will now cave in on foreign policy: on Russia, on Syria and everywhere else the borg demands it. He has been put "on notice" and will either do as he is told to do or he will be the prey in an even bigger hunt.
It is alarming that the so-called left part of the U.S. policy is lauding the "deep state" for this open attack on the elected government. They are now justifying the methods that will one day be turned against themselves. Why do they fail to see this?Please do visit the Moon of Alabama website - The comments on this article are interesting.
|Location map of Cameroon Equirectangular projection. Geographic limits of the map: N: 13.5° N S: 1.4° N W: 8.2° E E: 16.6° E (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
"Help,” my mother began our weekly phone conversation. “Marge and I aren’t speaking.” Marge is one of my mom’s best friends. When she moved houses, Marge showed up with curtains and a lamp and had her grown son heave boxes in from the car. When my mom found herself alone on Christmas one year, Marge set an extra spot at her table.
But here’s the thing: Marge is a Republican. My mom, a Democrat.
This hasn’t mattered for the better part of the last decade. Their friendship is built on warm conversations over lunches, shared confidences, and favors exchanged. But then, several weeks ago, Mom became so outraged by current events that she began posting a series of anti-Trump memes and quotes.
When analyzing the fear-based odyssey of today’s War On Terror era in America and in Europe, we see that the public has been subjected to highly sensationalized tragedy, false and misleading wartime agitprop and a ‘Wag the Dog’ reality that has deflected the true nature of organized criminality the world over.
Shawn Helton of 21st Century Wire
The purpose of this article is to illustrate how three rather large mainstream media lies were used as a pretext for war in the Middle East, three aspects that have separately, albeit symbiotically, altered the course of Western foreign policy by way of deception, and dramatically paved the way to destabilization in Iraq, and later to Libya, and finally to Syria.Read More
Government entities, along with mainstream TV news, print media and PR firms – have all worked hand in hand to heavily influence the public’s political perspective concerning the reality of modern warfare. Let’s take a look a three fabricated stories used to accelerate Western interests in the Middle East…
Amnesty International report on Syria: a response from a Syrian dissident (former political prisoner living in Europe)
Of course, the Syrian regime committed and is committing and will continue to commit human rights violations but this is about the Amnesty International report on Syria.
Western human rights organizations--specifically Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch--don't have any credibility among most Arabs about human rights. Their reputation has sunk far lower ever since the Arab uprisings in 2011, where they have been rightly perceived as propaganda arms of Western governments. So, I saw the report yesterday and read the Methodology section and immediately felt that it is not credible: given the mention of unnamed sources (not one of them willing to be identified and the reference to countries which host Syrian opposition groups). But I am not an expert on those details and specifics. I don't trust the Syrian regime, (and its sponsors) and I don't trust the Syrian rebels and their sponsors in the West and East.
How to judge the report? I asked a well-known Syrian dissident who, due to his leftist underground activities, served years in Syrian jails and was subjected to torture by the regime. His name is Nizar Nayouf. He wrote me those responses, and I can't judge the validity of the specific answers, but given that there is no scrutiny by Western media to anything coming out, which is in sync with Western government propaganda on Syria, I thought it would be useful. These are my (rush) translations (edited) of his answers:
"I have, for quite some period of time, been trying to get the Department of Justice to engage in some sort of a dialogue about what it is they are looking for," Pollack tells Mother Jones. "Where does Julian fit into whatever investigation they're doing? Have they charged him? Will they charge him? Are they seeking to extradite him? And the Department of Justice has just repeatedly refused to engage or provide any information whatsoever."Furthermore, Mother Jones quotes Assange:
"We look forward to having a conversation with the DOJ about what the correct way forward is," Assange said during a January 19 press conference. "We say, of course, that they should immediately drop their case, or they should unseal their extradition request if they have one, unseal their charges…But what is occurring in the United States is an attempt to prevent us and our lawyers getting our teeth stuck in to this case and getting standing by keeping it secret."Read entire article (MotherJones website)