« Open Thread - 18 April 2017 | Main | My thoughts on Korea - Chapter 1 - 19 April, 2017 »

18 April 2017


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.


Jackrabbit, admittedly I am not too fond of the "selected con" theme? ... Besides I am in a highly melancholic state of mind, for quite some time now.

I made Husseini's argument too, admittedly, around here. Without ever, admittedly being interested in parallel evidence collection, more surfaces. Trump and/or his adviser's no doubt witnessed the success of the Trump campaign. Isn't "Challenging the elites" vaguely the core? A better life? The desire for less wars, minus fighting the by now no doubt existent ISIS, both its warriors and its supporters. It offers a clear image of the enemy after all, that can be solidly rooted in the reality too.

Besides: Is there any chance that a candidate can win without being solidly rooted in whatever type of elite support?

But without looking it up more closely:

...because [Obama] had given a speech years earlier against the then-impending invasion of Iraq.


I still respect him for that. But obviously got more skeptic about his government after. As anyone else around here. Minus the treaty with Iran, that is, in my case. But I also somewhat respect him still for some matters that made him visibly vulnerable to attacks.

Obama's core problem was the fraction of the reality-creators, who succeeded beyond our wildest fears. However you define that camp. He would have been too late anyway. The train had left the station way too long ago.

To what extend does this changed-outer-reality change us too?

E.g. I stopped supporting a group working in the field of humanitarian aid, when i discovered their cooperation with Adopt a Revolution. Could I be sure that the money would only flow into "unarmed resistance". Beyond that what would be wrong by creating structures for a civil society in Syria? Providing help for self-help?


If I lean back and basically assume that all NGO's cannot be trusted, then I have indeed arrived full circle in the perception of a NGO hunter in Israel. Who incidentally also targets group my above mentioned friends supported earlier. Who I also deeply disliked.


The elephant in the room.


tim s


I don't know where you are seeing this public erection over this missile strike. I don't see it anywhere around me, and I'm in a pretty red area. If it is being presented through the media, either through surveys or video clips, it is likely their garden variety BS. All I know is that the majority of people have voted for the candidate who promised to end all of these wars over the past few elections. If there's any bamboozling, it's in the fact that people still believe that we have choice in our elections for high office.

As far as defiling our culture, I'd argue that we have no defined culture in the USA, and haven't for a very long time, unless you want to consider the continuous herding by deception that has been the norm for our entire lives here. How that can be defiled is beyond me.

An analogy to Hitler is not a good one. He was actually a nationalist. What we have here with all of our past presidents are people posturing as nationalists to get the vote, and then showing either their true colors as a globalist or being coerced into hauling their water. Germany in the 20s & 30s was under the heel of the WW1 victors. We, however are the "victors" of the last major war. Germany at that time was trying to get rid of their "neocons" while we in the west are fairly well controlled by them.

Hood Canal Gardner

Fair lament..good pencil OM. I guess for our age (at least) it has been conditioned to accept, even sometimes worship, that money is the measurer of all. OM, surely it matters who the "we" are when measuring/calculating return on investment/s.

".... At least we would have something positive to show for going $20 Trillion into debt."


Kurt of Vlaanderen? Kurt of Flanders?

sorry can't help this:


"25 bil"? Did you mean $2.5 billion?

... one simple way to value any business is to capitalize the income that it generates using an earnings multiple. If you take a multiple of twenty (which is high) and apply it to $128 million, you get a figure of $2.56 billion. [BUT] ... in addition to overstating his income, has seriously understated the amount of debt that his businesses are carrying.

Gawker: $4 billion

Fortune: #3.0 - 3.9 billion

Shady accounting underpins Trump’s wealth

“If he is swimming in so much cash for all his holdings, why is he selling this stuff to raise cash [for his campaign] ?” asked another ultra-high-net-worth individual who also reviewed the filings

Seamus Padraig

What he means by 'fake', I'm sure, is that the attack achieved no military objective at all; its purpose was clearly political in nature. I think we're all in agreement on that point. As I see it, the only significant disagreement here is whether the political objective in question was domestic or foreign.


... what will be our Night of the Long Knives? ...
What indeed? Events have proved one thing about Trump: The dumbest thing you can do is to underestimate him. They also proved one thing about the neocons: The dumbest thing about them is their complacency ! So wheen the sarin-fraud blows up, they might try to impeach him, but he might turn around and arrest McMaster and Comey(dian) etc. for having deceived him. Interesting times ahead.

robt willmann

Professor Theodore Postol appears to have a fourth article out about what now looks like (another) false flag operation in Syria about toxic gas to influence the public to support more violence against the Syrian people encouraged, assisted, or carried out by the U.S. and others. The "official" story is that Syria used an airplane(s) to drop one (or more) containers with toxic sarin gas on 4 April 2017 that killed civilians, including babies. Prof. Postol's 13-page report is here--


Postol uses the angle of the sun as part of his analysis. This reminds me of another patriot who was a scientist who used the angle of the sun in a different situation. Mac Cox was a retired scientist who had most likely worked at the National Reconnaissance Office. When a FLIR video that had been recorded the day of the FBI assault (possibly including elements of the military) on 19 April 1993 in Waco, Texas that resulted in many deaths and the Branch Davidian's building being burned to the ground, the tape showed flashes of heat outside the building, which some interpreted as heat plumes from weapons being fired at the building. The FBI said that the flashes were merely sun reflections off of reflective material or glass on the ground in the area.

Mr. Cox decided to check it out for himself, and proved that based on the position of the sun at the time of the attack on the building and the position of the airplane and the FLIR sensor at that time, it was impossible for the heat flashes on the tape to be from sun reflections. After Mr. Cox's work appeared on his website, the FBI/government dropped its position on sun reflections. Being the detailed person he was, Mr. Cox said that although he proved that the flashes were not sun reflections, what actually caused the heat flashes on the tape was a separate question that he did not address. Because of Internet archives, some of his work is here--




Toxins in Flint`s drinking water killed zero.


So far.

That's part of the problem isn't it? Actions resulting in statistical deaths are treated as a political problem. Don't like it? Then vote in the alternative candidate that will also serve corporate interests. Rinse, repeat.

Elite non-accountability is why Trump said that he could kill someone in Times Square and get away with it.


Do not be too hard with your fellow citizens, in France (and in Switzerland, I live in Geneva), we all too often see the same reaction to bombing: the people are asking for more. Since ancient Rome, the human has remained the same ..... unfortunately.


With respect, in my opinion the analogy to Reichstag fire --> Nazis taking absolutist powers ---> etc. is inapt.
I believe the well-worn, relentlessly-repeated narrative suffers from failure to assess all of the evidence from a broader range of sources, in much the same way as the oft-repeated Syria narrative suffers.

One example of details re the Reichstag fire that could change the assessment of how much power Hitler had, and who/what was behind that power: Ernst "Putzi" Hanfstaengel is the person who contacted Hitler at Goebbel's home (iirc) to inform him of the fire.

Putzi was a friend of Teddy Roosevelt and of FDR; they lunched together at Harvard.
Putzi wrote in his memoirs that the "Heil" routine was borrowed from Harvard football cheers; and the swastika/flag was a minor redesign of a sports banner that appeared in Harvard sports video from that era. (I'm a quilter; When I look at film of Nazi parades, etc., the first question that pops into my head is, Who paid for all the fabric in those banners, and for the Hugo Boss uniforms? Germany was financially prostrate in Jan. 1933. Clearance sale at the local fabric shop? Here's something interesting: In 1934 Congressman Nye caused this article from Fortune magazine to be entered into the Congressional Record: http://www.fredsakademiet.dk/tid/1900/1934/nye.pdf TEXT OF

Putzi encouraged, assisted and financed Adolf to write Mein Kampf.

Putzi brought Mein Kampf to the attention of FDR.

Putzi gave Hitler shelter and support in the aftermath of the failed Beer Hall putsch.

Putzi became a member of the Nazi party.

Putzi later defected to USA and became an informant to the US gov.

Before the Reichstag fire, FDR had cast the support of US government and his administration to Josef Stalin, who had already caused the deaths of several millions of Russians and Ukrainians.

Communist films from the era when USSR still occupied E Berlin portray Hitler as a useful carry-out boy for the major financial concerns in Germany, other European states, as well as United States -- the people who were actually calling the shots.

Moreover, at the time of the Reichstag fire, Hitler / Germany was not engaged in wars, did not have military assets in numerous places around the globe, did not even have much more than the constrained force permitted by Versailles; as Gerd Schultze-Rhonhof explains in "1939: The War that had many fathers," Germany's neighbors had over 12 times the martial strength of Germany -- contrast to USA, which spends multiples more than major states combined. Germany in 1933 was operating from a position of weakness & defensiveness, not of superpower strength and projection of power.

What does it all mean? I don't know. But they are facts, ineluctable facts that demand to be factored into judgments about the era and included in a full and complete history.
I don't think we have a complete and honest history of many WWII events (and punitive censoring of any and every attempt to reform the dogmatized narrative seems to me an indication that there are some awful truths that someone does not wish to be exposed).
Thus, in my contrarian view, to use the Reichstag fire as an analogy to the present Syria debacle is to commit similar fallacies and lapses of critical judgment as Trump and the Borg are accused of committing in their propaganda on the situation.

That said, and considering Mike Pompeo's comments at his "first public speaking engagement" since his appointment as CIA director, at a CSIS event moderated by (neocon) Juan Zarate,
I suggest that a more appropriate analogy of Trump's Syria actions would be to the Cuba missile crisis.

Pompeo's remarks suggested to me that he functioned as a "Yes-man."
Pompeo gushed over his pride in being placed in his position, and pride in how "not just the CIA but the entire intelligence community, in short order . . . tested the hypotheses and . . . concluded that Assad did it."

Russia's and Assad's "disputation" of that conclusion were the expressions of "a man (Putin) who has no credibility . . . for whom the word veracity does not translate into English." [er, Russian, Mr. Pompeo]

According to one analysis of the decision-making at the time of the Cuban crisis, JFK felt himself surrounded by Yes men as he worked to resolve the threat.
He was able to break through the ego-driven responses as well as his own impulses and act in a more statesman like fashion.
Trump failed that test.

I have implied that Hitler was a tool of larger powers -- primarily financial and armaments interests engaged in a global geostrategic game from which USA emerged on top, by hook or by crook.
Is Trump a similar tool? Does he know it? I think he does.

Finally, I don't think the Borg can be unraveled and exposed and defanged until the entire history of "the Reichstag fire" and all its precedents and consequences are thoroughly and honestly brought to light, damn the cries of Holocaust denial. This is our history and our patria, -- O mia patria, si bella et perduta . . . (If you love your country, Step Forward.)

ONE MORE final finally -- Maurizio Viroli is my guide to the study of Machiavelli. He shares his time between USA (Univ. of Texas at Austin) and Italy, where he is active in teaching on civic engagement. He wrote on the Berlusconi years a book titled "The Liberty of Servants"

"Challenging our most cherished notions about liberty, Viroli argues that even if a power like Berlusconi's has been established in the most legitimate manner and people are not denied their basic rights, the mere existence of such power makes those subject to it unfree. Most Italians, following the lead of their elites, lack the minimal moral qualities of free people, such as respect for the Constitution, the willingness to obey laws, and the readiness to discharge civic duties. As Viroli demonstrates, they exhibit instead the characteristics of servility, including flattery, blind devotion to powerful men, an inclination to lie, obsession with appearances, imitation, buffoonery, acquiescence, and docility. Accompanying these traits is a marked arrogance that is apparent among not only politicians but also ordinary citizens."


YT, no, the chosen people are were not included in the Kurt v. V.' piece. By the way, the German poet, R.M. v. Rilke said something like that - apparently fitting the different kinds of best people or best religions - "du bist nicht naeher an Gott, wir sind ihm alle weit.."
(you are not nearer the Lord, for him we are all far away)


Our "reasons" for conducting the tomahawk attack? Your claim that it was done "merely" for political reasons puts me in a rather violent frame of mind. There will be payback for this piece of theatrical stupidity and our troops are the ones most likely to suffer.
You walk into a bar with girlfriend, pick some weedy dude and sucker punch him to impress your girl. This is smart? Imagine you are the weedy dude. Absolutely no thoughts of payback?
Oh, BTW, the girlfriend just split, the other patrons loathe you, and your wallet was lifted so the bar tab is a problem.



Too 'complicated' these thoughts for chinks (who worship only mammon or authority).


Such 'feelings' as described by said poet only apt for dreamers of "multiculturalist" pax britannia or pax americana (whose acts abroad are anything but 'pax').


Besides, said 'chosen people' you referred to are themselves deplorable by their ostracizing of own dark-skinned 'brethren' or those other ethnics from the Dark Continent...

Babak Makkinejad

These are the common characteristics of ancient peoples everywhere; they could not survive those past millenia in any other way.

Italy, specifically, was a better place before the fall of the Berlin Wall; when all the East European unwashed and unwashable riff-Raff drifted into their country.


re: blind devotion to powerful men

'Twas Honoré de Balzac who quipped:"Behind every great fortune lies a great crime."




Sadly, to date, hoi polloi who worship mammon are still servile only to cretins with vast hoards.




I'm not American and feel slightly uncomfortable jumping into a conversation that feels kind of raw and personal.

Still, FWIW, I wonder if comparisons to the Reichstag fire are any more useful than those to Chamberlain and Munich. Don't dramatic analogies of this kind, with known catastrophic outcomes, run the danger of locking our thinking into rigid patterns rather than staying open to unfolding reality?

Germany, in the years leading up to Hitler, had lost a disastrous war, suffered under an ignominious, highly controversial and impossibly punitive treaty, teetered on the edge of civil war, had its middle-class mostly wiped out by hyperinflation, endured continual weak and vacillating governments and then plunged into depression. It was primed for Hitler, or someone like him.

Is the US also "in peril"? Seen from the outside, I think it probably is but is it in any meaningful way comparable to Germany in the 30s?

As for "culture of death", outside of (arguably) the adherents of the "war party", does that phrase reasonably describe the US? Perhaps "tim s" is closer to the truth: "All I know is that the majority of people have voted for the candidate who promised to end all of these wars over the past few elections." Again, from the outside, the "culture" of the US (to the extent that term is even meaningful) seems more like one of deeply embedded, almost blind self-perception as the exceptional nation, combined with a disinterest verging on carelessness about what that might actually mean in practice. That self perception may in parts be loosening its grip, but what remains nevertheless still gives the powers that be an awful lot of rope to play with.

One of the big questions, to my mind, is whether there's any real plan behind their (mostly) chaotic efforts in recent decades. Here, I'm with the Colonel in believing there's far more stupidity involved than clever malice. Lots of competing factions, for sure, lots of greed, ambition, even zealotry, but well thought out grand plans? I don't think so.


That's really good , thanks for posting it. Almost a century later , and we haven't learned a damn thing.

" Very few people like us, and very few would be sorry to see misfortune fall upon us. "

I'm certainly not one of the "very few " , and I'm us.


It sounds like that pdf would mesh well with this :




While in broad agreement with your point , I think there are still some specific examples of stark cultural defiling that present themselves now and then.

A recent case I found heartbreaking : Warmongering propagandist Brian Williams taking a dump on the grave of songwriter Leonard Cohen.


I thought the video above was far too smartass to be effective.

It cracked through all the reasons to doubt Assad's use of sarin gas at such a rate that only people who already understand all the arguments would be able to follow it. Newcomers - the people we want to convert - would be completely baffled by it.


What an idiot that Brian Williams is! he obviously did not understand any thing Leonard Cohen said in the song that he quoted.


No worries.

I've no wish to see misfortune befall US citizens - many of whom mostly I've had pleasant encounters with even in my backwater neck-o'-the-woods (unlike other xenophobic white trash economic refugees from other hemispheres that have the temerity to view us Asiatics with disdain even tho their spouses are also Asiatic).

Dude, I feel for y'all in the Nort Americas...





People who've never experienced or gone thru the worst in life - all manner of trial & tribulation - can never hope to understand or have Empathy for those others in far-flung lands.

Whatever the sins of US foreign policy or military misadventure, its citizens do not deserve such miseries...

The comments to this entry are closed.

My Photo

February 2021

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
  1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
Blog powered by Typepad