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16 September 2016

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Will

The strategy is to double down on Syria hoping to embarrass Putin and cause regime change in Russia. John Mearsheimer explains this stuff in his book "The Tragedy of Great Power Politics." It's the perpetual struggle for hegemony.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Tragedy_of_Great_Power_Politics


This is really sad if it's true. Our Special Forces have been inserted to help out the head choppers. And they have turned on us. It would be kinda like what happened in benGhazi. Is that the reason why the agreement with Russia has stuff that we want to stay secret? to protect our troops over there?
https://www.almasdarnews.com/…/video-us-troops-northern-sy…/
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RIfC0WaLD4o&feature=youtu.be

turcopolier

Will

USSF is with the Kurds. You consider them to be "head choppers?" the CIA are the people supporting Ahrar al-Sham, etc. "Is that the reason why the agreement with Russia has stuff that we want to stay secret? to protect our troops over there?" What are you taling about? pl

Dubhaltach

Meanwhile in parts further East the Russians have just finished their "Caucasus-2016" exercises during which an American P-8 Poseidon reconnaissance aircraft flew to within 60 Kilometres (40 miles) off the coast while the exercise was going on.

A Russian SU 27 intercepted it flying to within 10 feet of it according to American Officials speaking to CNN. The same report says the incident lasted 19 minutes ( http://edition.cnn.com/2016/09/07/politics/russia-us-jet-intercept/ )

If you dig through the verbiage and propaganda in this report from Fox News ( http://www.foxnews.com/world/2016/09/07/russian-jet-flies-dangerously-close-to-us-navy-spy-plane-over-black-sea.html ) it's apparent that the American plane had its transponder turned off. It's a major crime if the Russians do that but when the Americans do it it's perfectly alright, praiseworthy even.

Towards the end of the Fox item there's this:

"Photos and video also showed a series of provocative moves from Iran's powerful Revolutionary Guard targeting the U.S. military.

On Sunday, the Guard's fast-attack boats came within some 500 yards of the USS Firebolt, with one stopping right in front of the coastal patrol boat in the Persian Gulf, said Cmdr. Bill Urban, a spokesman for the U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet, based in Bahrain. Urban said the USS Firebolt turned and missed the boat by only about 100 yards. Iranian speedboats fired rockets near U.S. warships and commercial traffic in December, and an Iranian drone overflew an American aircraft carrier in January."

On the other side of the Globe the Sino-Russian exercise "Joint Sea-2016" started last Monday off the Guandong Coast (See: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-southchinasea-china-russia-idUSKCN11H051 and https://sputniknews.com/asia/20160911/1045201220/russia-south-china-sea-navy.html ) The Sputnik report gives a bit more detail including:

"The massive military exercise code-named "Joint Sea-2016" will feature destroyers, submarines, fighter jets, shipborne helicopters and marines according to the Chinese Navy’s official website. The countries will join forces in practicing defense, rescue and anti-submarine operations in addition to "island seizing" demonstrations.

Additionally marines will participate in live-fire exercises, defense and landing maneuvers in what is billed to be the single largest joint military operation between the two countries’ naval forces. The plan comes after China announced in July, before the situation in the South China Sea had fully escalated, that Beijing and Moscow planned to join forces in a “routine” naval exercise.

[snip]

Leading American think tanks, including the notorious RAND Corporation have also begun laying out the template for a war with China even taking to the pages of major publications to openly lobby for preemptive military action against Beijing substantially raising the stakes over the disputed waters."

Whatever happened to "never start a land war in Asia"? Has it been replaced with "let's start a land war in Asia and a separate but linked sea war just for the hell of it"?

Tigermoth

With regards to Russian methodology; IMO they are slowly painting the US further and further into a corner in regards to showing that the US consistently breaks international laws. Since Russia plays the long game (maybe very long game); I see the latest suggestion from FM Lavrov is to make the full COH documentation public. But, via a UN resolution in the SC. This would make it also part of international law.

With all of these UN resolutions becoming international law that the has US agreed to and then willful ignores, it shows how untrustworthy a "partner" the US is for all to see. As the world's balance of power is shifting away from the West these transgressions will come back and bite hard in the future.

turcopolier

TTG

Please give us your opinion as to what happened at al-Rai. The Americans there do not look like GBs to me. Maybe an air force forward control party? pl

Will

Fair enough, the Kurds are displeased at their perceived abandonment. Or maybe it was "turcomans" shouting as the advisors crossed over from Turkey. Nevertheless, the secret clauses are probably aimed at protecting our embedded assets from retribution after the embedees perceive they have been doublecrossed or abandoned. Eventually, the secret will be leaked, b/ hopefully they will be out of harm's way by then.

hmm- this ceasefire has some tough hurdles to overcome
https://www.almasdarnews.com/article/syrian-army-returns-strategic-aleppo-highway-rebel-attack/

turcopolier

Will

"as the advisors crossed over from Turkey." What? Do the Americans at al-Rai and Tel Abyad look and sound like GBs to you? pl

Will

my bad, it was probably like you suggested- military observers or coordinators. The SF are hi principled, and i mean that sincerely, per their motto. No double meaning intended, I really do think a lot of them.

Lemur

There's two basic establishment self narratives in the US. The rightist one goes "America has always been great because of its noble ideals, and we remain the last best hope of mankind." The leftist ones have been diffuse and shaded. Some are overtly anti-American. But after the election of Obama that liberal tendency started to moderate itself. Liberals started to see an America made in their image. This new center left narrative now states "America was not always great. America did terrible things! But we have overcome them! Civil Rights! Gay Marriage! A Black President! Perhaps next a female president!"

So John's elaboration of historically unexceptional things America has got up to has very little impact on a Democratic party and electorate that conceives of itself as a pure ideological subject. In the same way the Soviet Politburo would not have felt it necessary to deal with, say, the excesses of Ivan the Terrible, the New Clintonian Exceptionalism is exempted from all historical criticism.

The forces embodied technocratic global elite are almost unstoppable.

As Heidigger said, 'only a god can save us.'

LeaNder

the Russian annexation of the Crimea. There is a lot of talk about threats.

Interesting topic. We had an interview on our public channel with Putin in this context. ... apart that it is indeed an interesting topic, once compared to former Yugoslavia.

Although yes, there were reports of threatening movements of Russian airplanes "on the borders". Not lately though. To the extend I recall or pay attention to start with.

J

Colonel,

Speaking of France's 'sins', DGSE loose lips:

http://boingboing.net/2016/09/15/french-spy-boss-admits-france.html

turcopolier

J

Like you, I am shocked. SHOCKED! "Round up the usual suspects." pl

JohnsonR

"And then there is the over-arching problem of chauvinist Russophobia in the Borg, and now in the post Martin Dempsey world of Ash Carter's Department of Defense. I have asked many well connected people to tell me what the roots of this hostility may be."

Imo, there is definitely a degree of emotive irrationality behind the US regime's attitudes towards both Russia and Iran, based largely on (what should be) irrelevant past events. Both are countries the US regime should have been seeking to have a constructive relationship with for the past two decades, rather than provoking. In addition to the historic grievances, of course, there is also the malign influence of particular foreign governments and their lobbies, who see fomenting US confrontation of Russia or of Iran as being in their own interests.

China, on the other hand, is a real potential future peer rival and threat, unlike ether Russia or Iran. Which makes it all the more remarkable that so much of the US regime's efforts seem to have been directed at driving the latter two into the arms of the former.

Jack

Sir

Escalation of conflict with Russia in the belief that we are the hegemon and we can brook no competition seems very dangerous.

Since a president has a lot of sway in covert foreign operations, in your opinion would the Borg Queen ratchet up the heat another few notches if she ascends the throne?

A Pols

The real "threat" posed by these various independent operators like Russia and Iran is really not military per se, but rather to the future position of the US dollar as reserve currency and therefore to control of world finance, without which our "non negotiable lifestyle" is gone. That in my opinion is what undergirds everything else in our current machinations.
Money and power is what it's all about; all the rest is just furniture.

Liza

Col. Lang:

Russia and China are acting very effectively to end American control of the international financial system. Their objective is to end the status of the dollar as the reserve currency. They are establishing a multilateral financial system, in which no single nation or currency is dominant.

Wall Street and American government officials view this as an existential threat.

The US government can continue to increase its level of debt exponentially as long as the dollar retains its status as the reserve currency. Global trade is now conducted with American dollars, so nations will continue to purchase treasury bonds, even without interest.

Our debt is now approaching $20 trillion, the highest in the history of the world. And government expenditures will soon soar: Social Security and Medicare costs will soon increase exponentially with the retirement of the Baby Boomers. Three workers now support every social security recipient. By 2030, two workers will support every worker. At the same time, our economic growth has been dismal. Exports now account for less than 10 percent of the American economy. And American jobs are now going to Mexico.

The government has only one strategy to deal with this: accumulate more debt.

China is now building the Silk Road, which will revolutionize global trade. Russia is expanding the Eurasian Union, which will coordinate economic development between nations. (One example: Russia and Iran have launched plans to build a corridor to India and it's vast market). America has yet to develop a viable economic strategy for the future.


LA Sox Fan

This article is well worth reading. https://www.firstthings.com/article/2016/10/the-cold-war-is-over Too bad Hillary Clinton believes ginning up another Cold War might help her election chances.

simedogz212@yahoo.com

I am baffled. why seemingly are Americans manning the .50 cal guns on those technicals? Surely locals could do the job. Please advise.

jsn

When one assumes good faith in DC, your critique and puzzlement makes sense. This is not to propose that there are no good and honorable people in the halls of power there, but as our host's own previously stated experience with truth telling (TV during one our wars, IIRC) there shows, to stay active and to rise in that environment one is increasingly pressured to tailor one's narrative towards the interests of those yet closer to the center. Are their interest in food faith?

Without privy to the actual people there, one can only speculate and again our host experience with the "well connected", as noted today, is that they appear to have withdrawn into a content free echo chamber, of what? An idealism that our war waging, for whatever reason, is virtuous because we are doing it? Who's real world interest does this really support? Anyone outside the Borg is terrified by it, but I must note that DC no mints more millionaires than New York. There is, I submit, information in that.

I continue to believe there are lots of excellent career people in our government as my own experience in New York has introduced me to many, many excellent people in finance, an industry I personally think turned into a criminal conspiracy about the time of the First Gulf War.

I believe there is now a similar lawlessness at the heart of state and wonder what it will take to give those who do still care about the real interests of our nation the upper hand again:“For no society of men whatever can persevere its unity and continue to exist, if the criminal element is not punished, since, if the diseased member does not receive proper treatment, it causes all the rest, even as our own physical bodies, to share in its affliction…because when the wrong-doers have power they become more daring, and corrupt the excellent also by causing them to grow dejected and to believe that they will obtain no benefit from right behavior. For wherever the insolent element has the advantage there inevitably the decent element has the worst of it; and wherever wrong-doing is unpunished, there self-restraing also goes unrewarded… For it is not by any characteristic of birth that what is friendly is distinguished from what is hostile, but it is determined by men’s habits and actions, which, if they are good can make that which is alien like unto itself, but if bad can alienate everything, even that which is alien” Julius Caesar. Dio’s Roman History trans. E. Cary (1916)

Degringolade

I hope that you don't consider me rude to be chiming in here, but in the long ago, any GB who even smelled a camera would do everything he could to vanish.

All of these pix of pictures of "Green Berets" that are bandied about here in internet-land are suspect to me. Maybe the mission profiles have changed in these modern, selfie-driven times, but in the long ago past, the phrase "Quiet Professional" had real teeth.

Dubhaltach

In reply to JohnsonR 16 September 2016 at 12:32 PM

"Imo, there is definitely a degree of emotive irrationality behind the US regime's attitudes towards both Russia and Iran, based largely on (what should be) irrelevant past events. "

Those "irrelevant past events" may have been the original source of the American animus against those countries but it is their continued resistance that is the true source of the hatred for them within the American government.*

Both Iran and Russia continue to resist American hegemony. Both countries refuse to accept that America is in the right. Both countries continue to offer an alternative to the American way. Both countries continue offer a viable cultural alternative to the American way.

*In Russia's case there is also cultural hatred from the likes of Zbigniew Brzezinski and many of the Zionists.

Tyler

Sir,

I would be a lot of the animosity is driven by Russia's opposition to Western secular hedonism. You see some people talking and you'd think Putin had personally waterboarded every single person in Pussy Riot. Not allowing gay pride parades is the equivalent to Dachau. There's also the not so small influence of those like (((Masha Gessen))) who are still mad about the Tsar's cossacks kicking great grandpa out of Russia, or the revolt against (((communism))) in Russia.

This is what we are dealing with here - the Left will risk nuclear war for transgender bathrooms and historical grievances.

ex-PFC Chuck

The pervasive influence of Wall Street also deserves mention as a driver of Russophobia. The Too Big To Fail banks no longer see (if they ever did) their primary function as serving the financial needs of individuals and corporations that make and buy real products and real services that serve the needs of flesh and blood people. For the people who run these companies even the future health of the corporation they work for is not of major concern, except insofar as it amasses sufficient profits to continue providing them with fat seven, eight, and even nine figure year-end bonuses. This can best be achieved by extracting rents (in the economics sense) from as many toll booths in the “real” economy that they can set up. Among the most lucrative such opportunities are derivative securities based on underlying assets, and near the top of the attractiveness list of such assets are various natural resources. Russia, with its vast interior, is awash in natural resources, and Wall Street has been salivating for decades over them.

This characteristic of the finance industry of a society straying from its role as a facilitator of a society’s real economy is not a new thing. As Michael Hudson, perhaps the today’s foremost economic historian, points out in his many writings, and especially in his recent book “Killing The Host,” the phenomenon can be observed in the records of the societies of ancient Mesopotamia over five thousand years ago.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economic_rent
Killing The Host: http://amzn.to/1KN8T56
http://michael-hudson.com/2016/08/finance-is-not-the-economy/

turcopolier

simedogz212@yahoo.com

"Technicals" are junk put together in the third world. It is perfectly natural to have a pedestal mounted machine gun on a truck. We have always done that. i think these are probably USAF people. Would you really trust your close in security to "the locals" as you put it if you are USAF? pl

turcopolier

A Pols
"Money and power is what it's all about; all the rest is just furniture." The usual economic determinist BS. pl

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