BREXIT, FREXIT, GREXIT – where’s everybody going? The recent vote in the United Kingdom to get out of the European Union is a telling example of how ill-served citizens in the political/financial union are feeling about their status. Such feeling suggests the potential for contagion with other European nations souring on the control of the unelected bureaucrats in Brussels. Ellen talks with a noted international observer Stephen Lendman about this vote and the politics that led up to it and are now playing out.
Matt Stannard reports on another political stage, in NC, where money for local infrastructure depends on compliance with onerous immigration policies. And our What Wall Street Costs America report focuses on the tragic human costs inflicted on Puerto Rico by American hedge funds.
Among an array of deplorable Republican and Democrat presidential aspirants, Clinton stands out as the most dangerous and sinister of the bunch – an unrequited war goddess, risking nuclear confrontation if elected. Her record in office and since leaving government shows support for imperial lawlessness, indifference to human suffering, and addiction to self-aggrandizement, along with using her high office to accumulate great wealth. Clinton Foundation donors have direct ties to foreign nations, including a Saudi royal family member, corrupt Ukrainian oligarch/former Kiev parliamentarian, and anti-Chavista Venezuelan media mogul. After she became Obama’s Secretary of State, over a dozen foreign influence peddlers contributed around $68 million. Read
CIA operatives, US special forces and their rogue state counterparts train ISIS recruits in the fine art of committing gruesome atrocities, including beheadings, use of chemical and other toxic agents, as well as mass slaughtering civilians. US-led Western imperial ruthlessness bears full responsibility for the latest horrific incident. Dier Ezzor is Syria’s seventh largest city, its largest eastern one, located 280 miles northeast of Damascus. Pre-war, its population exceeded 200,000. Syrian oil fields are located in the area. The province connects ISIS’ declared capital Raqqa with Iraqi territory it controls. Read
Washington’s view on Russia’s Syrian campaign depends on who’s commenting at different times along with what the Western media reports or suppresses. Pentagon commanders are awestruck by Moscow’s formidable military power, its sophisticated weapons matching or exceeding their own capability, outdoing the prowess of other NATO countries. Its navy once derisively called “more rust than ready” is reinventing itself impressively. Its overall military capability dispels the myth about unmatched US superiority. Its Syrian campaign since September 30 has been devastatingly effective by any standard, permitting government ground forces to recapture lost territory, making slow and steady gains. Peace remains elusive. Expect late January talks to be no more successful than earlier ones. Washington wants US-controlled puppet governance replacing Syrian sovereign independence. Russia’s intervention changed the dynamic on the ground dramatically – short of hastening an end of conflict. Read
Before Iraqi forces retook Ramadi last week, Washington was accused of evacuating around 2,000 ISIS terrorists from the city. Iraqi People’s Mobilization Shiite militia umbrella group commander Hashd al-Shaabi said America delayed the liberation of Ramadi and Fallujah to enable “evacuat(ion) of (ISIS) ringleaders (and fighters) secretly to unknown places” by helicopter. Fort Russ reported an unnamed high-ranking Iraqi official, saying “(o)ur signals and human intelligence informed the Americans…about ISIS movement(s).” Read
The latest Monmouth University poll has him way out in front with 41% support – besting his closest rival, Senator Ted Cruz, at 14%, by nearly three-to-one margin. Most other Republican candidates scored in the low single digits, including party favorite Jeb Bush at 3%. According to Monmouth director Patrick Murray, “(i)t has become abundantly clear that Trump is giving his supporters exactly what they want, even if what he says causes the GOP leadership and many Republican voters to cringe” – including his Islamophobic rants, wanting Muslim immigrants banned from entering America. Hillary Clinton remains virtually uncontested so far for the Democrat party nomination – besting Bernie Sanders by a 59% – 26% margin, better than two to one. Read
On November 8, the Wall Street Journal headlined “US Military Officials Aim to Bolster Troop Presence in Europe” – to deter a nonexistent Russian threat. Pentagon commanders “proposed sending more forces into Europe on a rotating basis to build up the American presence and are stepping up training exercises to counter potential Russian interference with troop transfers in the event of a crisis with Moscow,” said the Journal. NATO commander General Philip Breedlove said decisions on greater US troop deployments will be made “in the next couple of months.” Read
On Sunday, Fars News said US warplanes killed 27 ISIS field commanders – 26 in a bombing raid on a Raqqa, Syria command center, the sole survivor eliminated separately. According to Fars, they “sought to break allegiance with Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the…main (ISIS) ringleader, a move (looked on as) surprising (and) suspicious.” It’s more evidence of ISIS in disarray since Russia’s Syrian air campaign began, as well as Washington unable to do anything about it. Putin’s determination to smash ISIS has been devastatingly effective. The Pentagon has no counter-strategy able to challenge it. Read
America’s founders believed education was insurance against loss of liberty. Jefferson said “(e)very government degenerates when trusted to the rulers of the people alone. The people themselves, therefore, are its only safe depositories. And to render them safe, their minds must be improved…” Public education is vital because it serves the public interest – giving meaning to “we the people.” Father of American education Horace Mann called “(t)he common school…the greatest discovery ever made by man.” He meant public, not privatized, prioritizing profits over teaching. He believed all students should be educated equally and responsibly. Read
On Friday, Sputnik News, RT International, the Jordan Times and Reuters said Russian and Jordanian officials agreed to establish a “special working mechanism” to share information on counterterrorism operations in Syria. “Under an agreement between His Majesty King Abdullah II and Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, the militaries of the two countries have agreed to coordinate their actions, including military aircraft missions over the Syrian territory,” Sergey Lavrov explained. He urged other nations to join their coalition against a common enemy. Read