Tip of the Hat to Jaime Enoch Ortega at LinkedIn.
The truth at any cost lowers all other costs
Tip of the Hat to Jaime Enoch Ortega at LinkedIn.
“Most Americans Don’t Have a Clue”
by GARY LEUPP
Counterpunch, SEPTEMBER 15, 2014
Patrick Cockburn reports that Prince Bandar bin Sultan, the Saudi ambassador to Washington (1983-2005), once told M16 head Sir Richard Dearlove: “The time is not far off in the Middle East, Richard, when it will literally be ‘God help the Shia.’ More than a billion Sunni have simply had enough of them.”
There are thus deep animosities within Islam, as there have been, historically, within Christianity.
There was a time when Protestants viewed Roman Catholics as idolatrous heretics and bloody wars of religion ravaged Europe. ISIL is now fighting such a war against Shiites, Christians, Yezidis, secularists, and others it sees as unbelievers and as stooges of the west. But its primary target is the Shiites.
Isis cannot be beaten as long as there is civil war in Syria
BY PATRICK COCKBURN
CounterPunch • SEPTEMBER 11, 2014
A letter printed at the bottom of this article was emailed by a friend soon after her neighbourhood in Mosul was hit by Iraqi airforce bombers. This was some hours before President Barack Obama explained his plan to weaken and ultimately destroy Isis, which calls itself Islamic State, by a series of measures including air attacks. The letter illustrates graphically one of the most important reasons why American air power may be less effective than many imagine.
I started out today writing a short essay on my views about this new war, then came across this, with which I agree. It makes my main point: You would think after 11 years of war in the Islamic world, we would learn something about the culture and how to work with it. Apparently not. I think one really has to ask now: Cui bono? Who benefits?
Why Obama Will Lose His Endless War in Syria and Iraq
STEVE WEISSMAN – Reader Supported News
Never bet on another man’s game,” my father loved to say. It’s a lesson Barack Obama never learned, especially in his military strikes against Islamic State.
Islamic State, or ISIL, has only one way to keep the support of Iraq’s Sunni tribesmen and former Baathist supporters of Saddam Hussein. The blood-thirsty ‘fools of God” need to be seen defending their people against a Western invasion, which is precisely what Obama gives them.
He plays the role they purposely provoked with their brutal beheadings, summary executions, and sickening use of mass rape to keep their fighters happy. He becomes the foreign, Christian crusader defiling a Muslim land, and he does it in company with Iranian as well as Iraqi Shiites, whom Islamic State despises as heretics, and with the blessing of Sunni Arab leaders it correctly sees as outrageously corrupt.
In other words, the more jihadis Obama kills, the more Sunnis that Obama recruits to their ranks. Not a winning strategy.
If you embark on something with your eyes half-open, you are likely to lose sight of reality
Financial Times, 14 September 2014
The reality is the US war on terror has succeeded where it was supposed to. Mr Bush’s biggest innovation was to set up the Department of Homeland Security. If you chart domestic terror attempts in the US since September 11 2001, they have become increasingly low-tech and ineffectual. From the foiled Detroit airliner attack in Mr Obama’s first year to the Boston marathon bombings in his fifth, each attempt has been more amateur than the last. The same is true of America’s allies. There has been no significant attack in Europe since London’s July 7 bombings nine years ago. Western publics have acclimatised to an era of tighter security.
If this is the balance sheet of the US war on terror, why lose sleep? Chiefly because it understates the costs. The biggest of these is the damage an undeclared war is doing to the west’s grasp on reality. Myopic thinking leads to bad decisions. Mr Obama pointedly avoided using the word “war” last week. Although there are more than 1,000 US military personnel in Iraq, and more than 160 US air strikes in the past month, he insisted on calling his plan to destroy Isis a “campaign”. Likewise, the US uniforms are those of “advisers” and “trainers”. These kinds of euphemism lead to mission creep. If you embark on something with your eyes half-open, you are likelier to lose your way.
Astonished, we are.
Lessons outlined in below video:
01 Don’t always take the bait.
02 Don’t overestimate the enemy
03 Remember politics (over there).
Phi Beta Iota: It is worth noting that none of the regional countries including Jordan is ready to provide ground troops. They are all — without exception — sucking the USA in to be the target. On a positive note, for the first time in 50 years, there is a break in the ranks of the “insiders.” This is a very positive development. Any and all US activity — from mediocre intelligence support to repressive regimes to air strikes to boots on the ground — should be forbidden by the public — sadly, big money wants this war and is paying to make the public stupid in time for the 2014 elections. We are reminded of Martin Luther King, John F. Kennedy, John Lennon, the Dixie Chicks. All right and all righteous in their time. All were also assassinated or marginalized for daring to confront the national security state that is formed and operated by traitors the FBI dares not go after. Can the Director of the FBI reconnect with his oath of office and his integrity and start making some inroads against traitors? We are not holding our breath.
Follow the Money, Follow the Oil
Counter-Punch, 12-14 September 2014
Missing from the chorus of outrage, however, has been any acknowledgement of the integral role of covert US and British regional military intelligence strategy in empowering and even directly sponsoring the very same virulent Islamist militants in Iraq, Syria and beyond, that went on to break away from al-Qaeda and form ‘ISIS’, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or now simply, the Islamic State (IS).
. . . . . . .
In other words, US forces will pursue public legitimacy through conventional social welfare while simultaneously delegitimising local enemies by escalating intra-insurgent violence, knowing full-well that doing so will in turn escalate the number of innocent civilians “caught in the crossfire.” The idea is that violence covertly calibrated by US special operations will not only weaken enemies through in-fighting but turn the population against them.
-This 3rd video is following the same script and format as the previous two
-Again it was first reported by SITE Intelligence
-Again the actual beheading is not shown
-The result of the beheading is shown in a still
-This video is specifically directed at the allies of the US, the UK in particular
-Again this video ends with the warning that another ISIS hostage will be beheaded in the next video
Intelligence Budget Data
On March 4, 2014, the Administration submitted its Fiscal Year 2015 budget request, including a base funding request of $45.6 billion for the National Intelligence Program (NIP), and a base funding request of $13.3 billion for the Military Intelligence Program (MIP). On June 30, the DNI submitted an updated FY2015 budget request of $49.4 billion for the NIP including funding for overseas contingency operations. An updated budget request figure for the MIP has not yet been disclosed.
Phi Beta Iota: We consider these figures to be severely deceptive and roughly 70% of the actual combined total budget for green and black intelligence capabilities that are secret, toxic, and a mix of benignly worthless (standing armies of ignorant analysts, collection that is not processed) and pathologically dangerous (drones, renditions, covert operations, subsidies to foreign intelligence services). Our best guess of the actual total US secret intelligence budget remains US$100 billion per year, inclusive of thousands of private sector “intelligence” capabilities (many of them “open source” and extremely mediocre) that are embedded within acquisition and other contracts, all out of control and of dubious value.
President Obama said not long ago that his foreign policy principle was “not doing stupid stuff.” At about the same time his State Department and CIA were conspicuously guiding and supporting a coup d’etat in Ukraine that was the exact contradiction to the Obama policy statement. The Ukrainian Parliament’s first post-coup act was to pass a resolution outlawing the use of the Russian language in the Ukraine, which is the native language of more than a fifth of the population of a country that has always been intimately involved in the history, religion and culture of the Russian nation. Nothing could have been more stupid.
[Until Obama's next move...]
Chuck Spinney and Pat Buchanan below the fold.