— Brentano emotion (@Brentano_only) March 3, 2017
— Brentano emotion (@Brentano_only) March 3, 2017
(Could you imagine a course like this being offered here in the states?)
from Tele Sur
Nicaragua’s ruling Sandinista National Liberation Front, FSLN, party is launching a new program at the country’s National Autonomous University dedicated to former Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez.
The program, named after the founder of the Bolivarian Revolution, will begin on Friday, two days before the fourth anniversary of his death.
“Students will study different aspects of the thought, legacy, practice and above all that path that illuminated the great Commander Hugo Chavez,” Nicaraguan Vice President and FSLN leader Rosario Murillo said, Prensa Latina reports.
Socialism, Bolivarianism, liberation theology, Afro-Indigenous history, and anti-colonial history are among the many topics students of the Chavez program will undertake. They will also collaborate with scholars from the Bolivarian and Central universities of Venezuela on projects related to Latin American integration.
Nicaragua isn’t the only Central American country that’s honoring Chavez’s legacy through education…
[read more here]
(The new spin on the botched Yemen raid is that it produced intel from cell phones harvested from the dead bodies of the women they killed during the raid. I guess they will locate those women’s friends and contacts, declare them “terrorists” as well and schedule black bag ops to go get them sometime in the future.)
from Press TV
The Pentagon has carried out its first major military operation in Yemen since a botched raid in January that killed women and children as well as an American commando.
US forces conducted more than 20 airstrikes involving a mix of manned and unmanned aircraft early on Thursday, the Pentagon said.
Navy Captain Jeff Davis said the airstrikes targeted al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula in three south-central provinces of Abyan, Shabwah and al-Bayda.
“The strikes will degrade the AQAP’s ability to coordinate external terror attacks and limit their ability to use territory seized from the legitimate government of Yemen as a safe space for terror plotting,” the Pentagon spokesman said.
The US military did not share a casualty estimate, but local officials said at least nine suspected al-Qaeda militants were killed.
Davis said the operation was coordinated with resigned president, Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, a strong ally of Saudi Arabia that has been engaged in its own military campaign against Yemen…
[read more here]
The General Command of the Army and Armed Forces announced on Thursday that units of army re-established control over the city of Tadmur (Palmyra) after inflicting heavy losses upon ISIS terrorist organization in personnel and equipment.
The Army’s Command said in a statement that the army units, in cooperation with the allied and backing forces, re-established control over the city of Tadmur (Palmyra) and the areas surrounding it following a series of successful military operations, supported by the Syrian and Russian air forces…
[read more here]
by Scott Creighton
On Jan. 29th 2017, Seal Team 6 launched a dusted-off raid plan in Yemen that had been devised under the previous Obama administration and ultimately rejected for reasons unknown. More than likely it was because the previous administration and their high level military advisors didn’t foresee a high enough “risk/reward” coefficient to justify the raid in a country we aren’t actually at war with.
That raid produced: one wrecked Osprey, 3 wounded servicemen, one deceased Navy Seal (Ryan Owens) and about 40 or so dead women and children, one which I wrote about yesterday, Nawar “Nora” al-Awlaki. It also produced one of the most off-putting moments in State of the Union addresses (I know it wasn’t technically a State of the Union address) when Ryan Owens’ wife Carryn Owens emoted for 3 long minutes as the gathered congress-critters applauded for way too long.
Many are arguing that Owens was used by Trump as a political prop. The fact that he seated her right next to his daughter so she would be in the photos and videos as well leads one to believe that is a definite possibility as does the decidedly “performance” feel of Carryn’s drawn out moment in the spotlight.
That night Trump said Ryan was a “hero” and that he had been “told” the raid produced invaluable intel that we would use against “the enemy” which is supposedly al-Qaeda… who, by the way, just won an Academy Award for their White Helmets propaganda.
Last night CNN held some town-hall thing with a bunch of carefully selected “townsfolk” asking per-approved questions of war-mongers Lindsey Graham and John “bomb Iran” McCain. One of the first questions dealt with that awkward moment from the Trump address to congress and both McCain and Graham emphasized repeatedly that the mission didn’t have to be “successful” for Ryan Owens to be viewed as a “hero”. Graham actually used the word “hero” about 40 times in his one minute response to the question.
So even though they disagree about the ultimate success or failure of the mission, everyone has to be on the same page when it comes to defining Seal Team 6 as “heroes” and by extension, the whole of the military and our interventionist policies in the Middle East. Don’t forget, while Trump is pushing for massive cuts in domestic spending to get our budget under control, he is also pushing for a massive increase in military spending for this adventurism. Ever since the phony raid that supposedly killed Osama bin Laden, Seal Team 6 has been the unofficial face of the Global War OF Terror and a raid in a country we aren’t even supposed to be in that ended so badly and killed so many women and children isn’t really helpful right now when it comes to glorifying the military and all the new money the MIC demands from Trump.
Military.com produced a bit of spin the day after the raid in which they tried to justify the large number of women and kids being killed by saying the women were combatants and attacked the Seals.
The New York Times wasn’t subtle when they spun the story of Carryn’s moment: With Nation Watching, Widow of Fallen SEAL Becomes a Face of Bravery
From CNN to ABC News to the Washington Post and Fox, the stories are all basically the same: Carryn and Ryan are the new faces the military industrial complex wants plastered on their foreign policy agenda because, quite frankly, who could possibly be derogatory about a fallen hero and his emotionally distraught white Anglo-saxon wife?
But there was a totally different face being exposed by the Intercept’s Matthew Cole on Jan. 10th 2017 that was quietly becoming the standard image of our war machine in certain informed circles across the country. And that face was quite disturbing.
Cole’s 4-year study of the practices of Seal Team 6 culminated in a 14,000 word expose titled quite simply and directly: The Crimes of Seal Team 6. The article itself received a good deal of attention. Here’s how the Daily Mail summed up the findings:
As bad as that is, the report from Cole is absolutely brutal. This is how it starts:
“Officially known as the Naval Special Warfare Development Group, SEAL Team 6 is today the most celebrated of the U.S. military’s special mission units. But hidden behind the heroic narratives is a darker, more troubling story of “revenge ops,” unjustified killings, mutilations, and other atrocities — a pattern of criminal violence that emerged soon after the Afghan war began and was tolerated and covered up by the command’s leadership.” Matthew Cole
Cole goes on to tell a rather disturbing story. He doesn’t come right out and say it, but the implication, along with that quote above, “revenge ops”, leaves a distinct impression in the mind of the reader.
The story is about a “mistake” attack launched by the Seals in Afghanistan where they took two teams, some helicopters and a couple bombers and attacked a convoy they said someone had thought bin Laden might be in. There were no weapons seen by the “intel” guys who gave them the target and bin Laden was identified as a guy wearing long white robes.
It turns out it was a wedding party, men women and children. Not one of them in military garb and only a few “family rifles” in the vehicles.
They dropped two bombs on the convoy which killed many of the wedding party members instantly and then went “weapons free” on the gunners on the helicopters who ended up “mopping up” survivors as they ran. One group was a man trying to get several women and children away from the slaughter. They were all mowed down.
Then the Seals hit the ground and some more shooting and head-cleaving took place.
All of this Cole tells from the perspective of a number of Seals, retired of course, who explain some of it was pretty horrible:
“According to this source, after shooting the man, who turned out to be unarmed, Hyder proceeded to mutilate his body by stomping in his already damaged skull. When Heath, who witnessed Hyder’s actions, reported them to his team leader in the presence of other members of the team, “several of the guys turned and walked away,” said the retired SEAL. “They were disgusted.” He quoted Heath as saying, “I’m morally flexible but I can’t handle that.” Heath refused to comment for this article.” Matthew Cole
Then Cole goes on in the very next paragraph and explains what happened in that little area just prior to this “accidental” mistaken identification of a wedding party as being Osama bin Laden:
“Less than 48 hours before Objective Bull commenced, a small reconnaissance group from SEAL Team 6’s Red Team had tried to establish an observation post on the 10,000-foot peak of Takur Ghar, overlooking the Shah-i-Kot valley, where forces from the Army’s 10th Mountain Division intended to strike the last redoubt of al Qaeda forces massed in Afghanistan. Neil “Fifi” Roberts, a member of the SEAL recon team, fell 10 feet from the back of a Chinook and was stranded as the helicopter took fire from foreign al Qaeda fighters who were already on the snow-covered mountaintop. Two hours passed before the SEALs in the damaged helicopter were able to return. They didn’t know it, but Roberts was already dead, shot at close range in the head shortly after his helicopter departed the mountaintop. A Predator drone video feed filmed an enemy fighter standing over Roberts’s body for two minutes, trying to behead the dead American with a knife.” Matthew Cole
The mission that took out the wedding party was not a mistake. It was a message. That’s the implication from Cole.
The message was as simple as it was savage: you do something to horrible to one of ours, we’ll do something much worse to you.
This goes beyond “revenge ops”. It’s a tactic typically used by occupying armies against growing insurgencies. When their guerilla fighters kill a member of the occupying force, they then target civilians in response in order to send a clear message to the insurgency and also to the civilian population that resistance will come at a terrible price. This kind of thing has gone on forever.
What’s new is the fact that the story was told.
After Roberts was killed, Seal Teams came in and fought the insurgents for several hours to retrieve his body. That story has been told.
“The battle of Roberts Ridge, as it came to be known, has been frequently described in books and press accounts. But what happened during Objective Bull, the assault on the convoy in the Shah-i-Kot Valley, has never been previously reported.” Matthew Cole
And now the massacre in the Shah-i-Kot Valley has also been told.
Without going into all the details of the Matthew Cole expose suffice too say it was not a glowing picture of the face of the Global War OF Terror. It was quite the opposite in fact.
And make no mistake, neither I nor Matthew Cole are trying to assert that all Seal Team members behave in this manner or serve this specific function. But the fact remains that over the years certain Seal Teams and certain members have become decidedly more brutal in places like Afghanistan and Iraq to the point where previous administrations were getting some blow back of sorts from out puppet regimes regarding the bloody trail they leave in their wake. This motivated various JSOC leaders to issue special orders in order to try to curb the ultra-violence being used by some Seals.
“The 14,000-word report describes a gradual erosion of the rules of engagement whereby SEALs became less scrupulous in shooting people who were perceived as enemy combatants.
Furthermore, it quotes SEAL Team 6 members as saying that senior commanders not only failed to discipline wrongdoing but also swept many details under the rug so as to avoid legal entanglements…
As the SEALs’ reputation for lawlessness began to gain traction and as complaints mounted from local Afghan government officials over nighttime raids and civilian deaths, the new head of the Joint Special Operations Command, Vice Admiral William McRaven, is reported to have to tried to rein in the outfit.
To the SEALs’ dismay, McRaven instituted a new set of regulations that required commandos to do ‘call outs’ before beginning an assault on a compound so as to allow women and children to escape.” Daily Mail
My article here is not about re-hashing the disclosures of the Matthew Cole piece. My article is about what happened on Jan. 29th this year and why it happened.
William Owens, the father of Ryan Owens who was killed during the raid in Yemen (a raid which once again produced a large number of women and children casualties), refused to meet with President Trump prior to that address before the members of congress where Carryn had her moment. He said he was angry about the mission and wanted an investigation into why President Trump authorized it in the first place.
“I told them I didn’t want to make a scene about it, but my conscience wouldn’t let me talk to him”, Mr Owens told The Miami Herald.
The father, who served in the military himself, called for a full investigation into the circumstances that led to his son’s death.
“Why at this time did there have to be this stupid mission when it wasn’t even barely a week into his administration?”, he said. “Why?” The Independent
That’s a good question and a valid one when someone offers up their child’s life overseas.
Especially considering the fact that this particular mission had been passed up by the previous administration when they deemed it wasn’t worth the risk and when you consider the end result which can’t by anyone’s standards be considered a success.
No, your mission doesn’t have to be successful to be considered a hero for your actions during it. It helps if scores of unarmed women and children aren’t slaughtered in the process. But all that morality stuff aside… it’s a fair question to ask why your son died in some little obscure patch of hell-hole on the other side of the world.
And if your son died because someone thought we needed a makeover for the face of our MIC adventures in the Middle East, I think it’s also fair to say that’s just not good enough.
by Scott Creighton
Thousands of news outlets are covering the “big moment” from last night’s presidential address to congress. You know the one. It was when President Trump mentioned Navy Seal Ryan Owens’ death in Yemen (without actually mentioning Yemen) and pointed out his widow, Carryn Owens, who was in attendance. I don’t have to tell you what happened after that. It was her moment to shine and shine she did.
She did a lot of that.A LOT of that. She milked it for everything it was worth and the audience ate it up. Her standing ovation lasted an uncomfortable 3 minutes. A painful 3 minutes.
Perhaps it was most painful for the wives of the two law enforcement officers who were killed ON DUTY by an illegal immigrant who had already been arrested and deported twice. They were there as well and the ovation they received for their fallen husbands lasted about 10 seconds. For both of them. I don’t see many articles this morning written about the suffering those women are enduring these days. I guess they were wearing the wrong uniforms? Maybe less important ones?
In MSNBC’s post mortem for the speech, slobbering Chris Mathews said Carryn was “talking” to her deceased husband. “That is love” he said as he went on to suggest soldiers can only hope to leave behind such dedicated spouses.
The president made the comment that he had been “told” by his Defense Secretary that the raid which cost the life of Carryn’s husband resulted in the collection of tons of valuable intelligence that would be critical in fighting “the enemy” over there.
That’s total bunk. That’s why he used the disclaimer that he had been “told” that and he didn’t say it as a fact. Because it isn’t a fact. The raid was not about gathering “intelligence” from some hard drives as we have been led to believe. It was about killing someone, a woman in fact.
“The official, and others briefed on the matter who spoke to NBC News, echoed the remarks of Sen. John McCain, R.-Ariz., that the raid was designed to kill or capture one or more militants — something the military did not initially acknowledge.” CNBC
This fact was verified early after the bungled mission by the grandfather of one of the youngest victims of the attack and a former official in the Yemeni puppet Saleh regime, a man who used to work for our interests in Yemen.
“They [the SEALs] entered another house and killed everybody in it, including all the women. They burned the house. There is an assumption there was a woman [in the house] from Saudi Arabia who was with al Qaeda. All we know is that she was a children’s teacher.”…
The child’s mother, Anwar al-Awlaki’s widow, survived the raid with a minor wound, according to Nasser al-Awlaki. However, Anwar al-Awlaki’s brother-in-law was killed in the raid. The death toll varies according to the sourcing, with the Pentagon saying 14 militants died, along with “numerous” civilians. Nasser al-Awlaki said Yemenis were circulating a body count of combatants and civilians as high as 59.” NBC News
They went there to kill or capture a “militant”… a woman… supposedly with al Qaeda who was a teacher and friend of their family.
The Pentagon admits a number of civilians were killed in that raid. Trump failed to mention that little tidbit of fact last night. If he had I doubt Carryn would have emoting for 3 minutes while “speaking” to her husband “in heaven”
The youngest of those victims of the slaughter was the daughter of a U.S. citizen, an 8-year-old girl named Nawar “Nora” al-Awlaki. She was shot in the neck at 2:30 in the morning after being woken by a massive MV-22 Osprey crash landing just outside of her home. She died terrified. Bled to death over the course of about two hours because they couldn’t get her medical attention. An 8-year-old daughter of a U.S. citizen.
“The senior military official said the 8-year-old girl, Nawar al-Awlaki, also known as Nora, was among the noncombatants killed in the raid, which also resulted in the death of several Yemeni women. U.S. officials said some of the women who were killed, however, were combatants and had opened fire on the SEALs as they approached the al Qaeda camp.
The girl’s grandfather, Nasser al-Awlaki, Yemen’s former agriculture minister, told NBC News a different story. He identified his granddaughter as the dead girl from a photo taken at the scene of the raid but based his description on what happened at the camp on conversations with what he characterized as Yemeni sources.
“My granddaughter was staying for a while with her mother, so when the attack came, they were sitting in the house, and a bullet struck her in her neck at 2:30 past midnight. Other children in the same house were killed,” al-Awlaki said. He said the girl died two hours after being shot.” NBC News
Here is a picture of Nora.
That little 8-year-old girl died on the same night that Ryan Owens died. She died along with about 30 other civilians, women and children included, depending on who’s numbers you trust. (go read this and judge for yourself)
She died in a “boots on the ground” raid in a country we have no business in, not for “intelligence gathering” but for a “snatch and grab” operation, a black bag op, which targeted, as best as I can tell, a woman… a teacher.
During last night’s painfully prolonged tribute to Carryn’s fallen husband, I wonder if anyone in that room gave a second’s thought to the other women sitting there wondering why their fallen spouses didn’t receive the same reverence that Ryan Owens did? Their husbands didn’t take part in a raid killing women and children on the other side of the world. They were fighting right here in this country against violent criminals bound and determined to cause direct harm to some of our citizens.
Don’t get me wrong. It wasn’t Ryan’s fault. He didn’t plan the raid he didn’t pick the target. He was “just following orders”… right?
And it isn’t Carryn’s fault that the sycophants in that room last night felt they had to stand and applaud forever because someone might be watching and we know what happens to congress critters who don’t back the glorious Endless War OF Terror. They get primaried by their own party because the Military Industrial Complex demands it.
They’re all just people caught up in something bigger than they are doing their level best to keep their heads above water like the rest of us.
They say Nora was wise beyond her years. I hope that is true. I hope Nora was looking down last night at Carryn with forgiveness. I hope she looks at us all with forgiveness. Because after last night’s little display, we need it. We don’t deserve it. But we need it.
by Scott Creighton
Jared Polis is bringing an illegal alien to Trump’s State of the Union address tonight. He’s using this human being as a prop just like Big Business used him as cheap labor for years. Exploiting him.
Polis went on Tucker Carlson’s show the other night and went on and on about how the “invisible hand” NEEDS cheap labor in America and how folks like this prop of his help Big Business by providing that cheap labor. And yes, he said “invisible hand”
Ever since George W. Bush announced his Comprehensive Immigration Bill proposal I have been writing that the whole thing was based on the desire to provide cheap labor for Big Business while deconstructing the wage scale, ultimately damaging the quality of life for millions upon millions of hard working American citizens.
Now that the Comprehensive Immigration program has been passed on to Obama and now Trump, the plan is still designed for the same purpose and this guy, this fascist member of the unDemocratic Party, makes it perfectly clear in this interview that everything he and his One Party buddies are doing is in service to Big Business. That’s fascism folks.
Tucker is watching this guy spout right-of-Reagan free market Milton Friedman talking points like his life (or his paycheck?) depends on it and he is quite literally stunned. Maybe he’s stunned because the neoliberal ass-clown is just so open in his disrespect for the American workers or maybe it’s because he can’t believe this is what passes for a Democrat these days.
The unDems have gone full on batshit, fascist crazy. They want slaves to save Big Business’ profit margins and they don’t give a shit who knows it and that includes working Americans who used to call themselves Democrats.
The mask is off, the Dems are raving fascists who would bring in real slaves from Africa for their friends at Walmart if they thought they could get away with it. These people are sick.
by Scott Creighton
Right before the DNC (unDemocratic National Committee) voted for Tom Perez as their new chair (Perez was Obama’s Labor Secretary who openly supported the TPP and said the Hillary campaign should call Bernie “racist” during the primary) they held a little vote on a proposal to keep Big Business money OUT of the campaign process. That suggestion was defeated.
Perez at one time said “yes, the Democratic primary was rigged for Hillary” and then he quickly revised that statement saying he “misspoke” and in fact Killary won fair and square. The mealy mouthed little worm was asked about that transformation of his position during the DNC chair primary and wiggled and wormed his way through a blather of an answer for about 5 embarrassing minutes… and he still “won” the chair position.
After his acceptance speech and a little “let’s get unified” cheer-leading session by another fake progressive Keith Ellison, the unDemocratic Party let party treasurer Andrew Tobias have the podium for a couple minutes to spout his goodbyes to the party faithful and announce his replacement. What followed was a stunning display of a corporatist zealot giving a little too much insight into the workings of the minds of the fascists at the DNC. (note: look at this crazy fuck’s eyes as he rants)
DNC Treasurer, Andrew Tobias on "rich business folks." pic.twitter.com/uRmlr8AW4h
— Dustin (@dustin_temple10) February 27, 2017
The “rich business folks” are gonna give em some kickback money. That’s all they think about. Telling businessmen their fascist Business-First party is gonna make them more money than the republicans and that they fully expect some kickbacks for doing it.
That’s the unDemocratic Party for you, right there. That’s WHY they lost to the joke of a candidate Donald Trump and that is WHY Democratic Party flight is a thing.
In three moves on that same day the unDems made SURE the progressive element of the party would leave and NEVER come back. It’s like Carl Rove is writing their scripts for them.
No one could be that stupid. The message they are sending is clear: the DNC is nothing more than the kiddies tables at the RNC. Progressive thinking liberals need not apply.
This is the One Party system, the Business Party system, that I have been writing about on this website for the past 10 years. Tobias’ little wild-eyed rant couldn’t have made it more clear. They are geared now to screw the working people of this country in favor of Big Business for kickbacks. That’s it. Nothing more too see.
(While the fake news and the unDemocratic Party distract us with tall tales of Russian boogeymen, The Donald is busy imposing reactionary neoliberal austerity cuts to America, turning us into Chile 1973.)
by Patrick Martin, WSWS
The Trump administration sent instructions to federal agencies Monday proposing a $54 billion increase in spending for the Pentagon, the intelligence agencies and the Department of Homeland Security, to be offset by $54 billion in cuts for other agencies, mainly those involved in domestic social services and regulation of business.
Trump’s budget outline sets the stage for his first address to Congress on Tuesday. It provides further evidence that the Trump administration will be dedicated to radically rolling back social spending to finance a dramatic escalation of military operations, both in the neo-colonial wars in the Middle East and against the United States’ ‘great power’ rivals: China and Russia.
Federal departments are being told to file budget requests for the fiscal year that begins October 1, 2017 based on the numbers they were given by the Office of Management and Budget. Each agency will be responsible for working out the cuts required to meet proposed reductions, while the Pentagon, CIA and DHS will propose expanded operations with the additional funds they are to be awarded.
There were no details made public about the exact budget ceilings given to each federal department, but White House officials made it clear that foreign aid programs in the State Department and anti-pollution regulation through the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) would suffer some of the largest cuts.
The total budget of the EPA is only $9 billion, so many other domestic programs are certain to be hard-hit, involving such departments as Education, Labor, Transportation, Agriculture (which includes food stamps), Housing and Urban Development and Health and Human Services.
The biggest federal social programs, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, are not affected by the budget order, which involves only funding for so-called discretionary programs, those financed through annual congressional appropriations. Entitlement programs, where benefits are paid out automatically to those who establish their eligibility, are covered by a separate budget process…
[read more here]
by Scott Creighton
Thanks to a Twitter post from Tim Anderson, I have found a MASSIVE collection of photos which prove the so-called “White Helmets” are actually al Qaeda-linked terrorists operating in Syria. I’ve seen a couple comparison photos before and posted articles which feature a few but I have seen nothing like this.
The collection was put together by someone over at Clarity of Signal which is a website I had never heard of but looks pretty good. I don’t know who runs it. Here are just a couple:
This is outstanding work and should be your go-to location to send folks when they have any questions about what the White Helmets really are. Well, here and Vanessa Beeley’s website. She just did a good interview over at RT by the way.
Who ever did this, it was obviously a massive undertaking and a labor of love. Love for the truth. Kudos to Clarity of Signal for putting this together. You should put it in your Favorites and link any trolls you come across to the collection. That’ll shut em up fast.
(Uh? Duh? No shit? We already knew that? This is news? Confirmed here by a news service that isn’t Russian. I wonder how stupid Bernie Sanders feels now? Oh wait, he will feel better when he goes and hangs out at the $600k lake house Killary bought for him. That’ll make him feel smarter.)
from RTThe House Intelligence Committee probe into possible improper contacts between Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and Russia has not found any evidence yet, according to the Republican committee chair.
“We still have not seen any evidence” that the Trump campaign communicated with Russia, Rep. Devin Nunes, the House Intelligence Committee chairman, told reporters on Monday.
“As of right now, I don’t have any evidence of any phone calls. It doesn’t mean they don’t exist,” Nunes said.“What I’ve been told by many folks is that there’s nothing there.”..
[read more here]