Arctic sea ice extent has been at a record low for the time of year for most of 2018, as illustrated by above image. In 2012, extent went below 3.4 million km². The question is what minimum 2018 extent will be.
Arctic sea ice could disappear altogether in 2018.
We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up
Thursday, April 19, 2018
Wednesday, April 18, 2018
I particularly was impressed by the last paragraph in this article which I am quoting below:
We need to learn more about the actual conditions in the lives of people in other places but we first need to fully understand our own homeland and what our rulers do to the rest of the world in our name, while keeping us in the dark about reality. As in Syria, Yemen, Iraq, Libya, Palestine and Ukraine, to mention only a few places where we murder, maim and prevent social justice and democracy while piously extolling their virtues. They can only continue to do that if we continue to let them, and inspiration can come from actually learning what people in other nations have achieved, against seemingly impossible odds, to enable us to not only believe in creation of a better world, but actually bring it from theoretical dream to practical reality. That means clearing the poisoned political gas filling our heads and analyzing reactionary rule in order to replace it with revolutionary democracy. Soon. Like now.
|Joseph Werner: Diana of Ephesus as allegory of Nature, c. 1680|
To paraphrase a famous quote by American revolutionary Patrick Henry, now is the time for all good men and women to come to the aid of their country and humans throughout the world. To do this we must seek the truth which has become a monumental task in a world of lies and deceptions spread by our insane masters. The latter who control much of the world are headed for their demise and they are taking us with them. Shall we, their subjects, offer no resistance like sheep going to the slaughterhouse; or will we as thinking humans refuse to be guided by their fakery and poison gas filling our heads; and shall we take from them the reins of power and affirm life, and stop them from exploiting us and abusing other humans, and, most of all, our Mother Nature? You must make the most important decision of your life, a decision which is probably the most important that humans have ever been confronted with: "To be or not to be."
Tuesday, April 17, 2018
- Ron Paul’s Liberty Report Talks with Vanessa Beeley in Damascus from 21st Century Wire. (Added interview with Eva Bartlett at 5:30 PM Seattle time.)
- An Interview [with Edward Curtin] about the JFK Assassination & The Attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 posted Curtin's website that originated from It's the Empire, Stupid! on April 5.
- The US secret plan on Damascus foiled by Elijah J. Magnier from his website. This independent Kuwaiti journalist usually has impeccable sources. The sources told him of the coordinated plans between Trump and the Russians, and the plans seem very convincing from the evidence reported after the US, British, and French missile attack on Douma (Duma), a suburb of Damascus.
- Talk Nation Radio: Scott Ritter: Syria and the Myth of Ethical Wars, a 29 minute interview with Scott Ritter, a former Marine Corps intelligence officer, posted by David Swanson on Washington's Blog.
- New sinews of working class power, a review by Mark Thomas of a book entitled On New Terrain: How Capital is Reshaping the Battleground of Class War authored by Kim Moody that was posted on Socialist Review (Britain).
Moody’s argument not only insists the working class still exists but that its structural capacity to organise and paralyse production has grown as the restructuring and consolidation of capital has created a “new terrain” for the class struggle. Such a case is highly welcome to socialists who argue that workers possess the collective power to not just challenge capital but to break it.
- Washington forces its allies to accept a bipolar world by Thierry Meyssan who is a prominent French geopolitical analyst. Read the article to see how the author reaches this dramatic conclusion:
This grand show [the missile attack on Syria], then, was no more than a futile gesture. After a quarter of a century of unilateral domination by the West, its three main military powers have just been down-graded. The world has returned to a bipolar situation like that of the Cold War, although the new rules still need to be defined. The Third World War will have to wait.
- Eva Bartlett on Syria & Smear Campaign, an approximately one hour video interview with Bartlett, conducted by Nathan Stolpman of the YouTube channel "Lift the Veil", in which she responds to questions about the smears she has received from several sources, and general questions about what is going on in Syria.
Also I should direct you to the post of the interview on Bartlett's website In Gaza where she provides a number of links most especially to other writers she respects for their honest reporting of events in Syria and the nearby region. (You may need to wait a few seconds for the video to upload on your device.)
Monday, April 16, 2018
While the directorate (Deep State) of the ruling capitalist class wants to continue to occupy a large part of Syria to harass and wear-down Syrians and its allied populations into accepting a different government that is more favorable to the Empire's interests of profit and power, Gowans points to the strategy's weaknesses:
... the US occupation of Syrian territory is kept largely under the radar of public awareness through its infrequent coverage by the mainstream media and minimization as a small scale effort involving “only 2,000 US military personnel,” a miscounting the Pentagon acknowledges. ....I believe that Gowans is correct in his analysis. Thus it follows that it is urgent that we in alternative media prevent their success by influencing our fellow Americans as to the truth about what our criminal masters are doing in Syria, as well as elsewhere in the world.
The vast majority of the citizens of the United States, the UK, France and other Western satellites of the United States, do not benefit in the least from Washington’s long war on Syria, and on the contrary, are disadvantaged by it; they bear its monetary costs. And ordinary Syrians certainly do not benefit either; on the contrary, the war casts them as victims of a blackmail.
US policy, then, rests on untenable foundations. It is illegal and in principle unsupportable by public opinion. These are weaknesses that can be used against Western governments to pressure them to abandon their unlawful, wasteful and morally unconscionable plans for the prolonged infliction of misery on Syrians.
- Voices of the Syrian People by Andre Vltchek from New Eastern Outlook.
- The MoA Week In Review And Open Thread 2018-17 by Bernhard from Moon of Alabama.
- Lawyers and Victims’ Families File Petition for Federal Grand Jury Investigation by Ted Walter from Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth.
- How the US Occupied the 30% of Syria Containing Most of its Oil, Water and Gas by Whitney Webb from Mint Press News.
In January, Tillerson made this objective clear. Speaking at Stanford University, Tillerson noted that “diminishing” Iran’s influence in Syria was a key goal for the U.S. and a major reason for its occupation of the northeast.
By cutting off the route between Tehran and Damascus, the U.S. would greatly destabilize and weaken the region’s “resistance axis” and the U.S. — along with its regional allies – would be able to greatly increase its regional influence and control. Given the alliance between Syria and Iran, as well as their mutual defense accord, the occupation is necessary in order to weaken both nations and a key precursor to Trump administration plans to isolate and wage war against Iran.
With internal reports warning of the U.S.’ waning position as the “world’s only superpower,” the U.S. has no intention of leaving Syria, as it is becoming increasingly desperate to maintain its influence in the region and to maintain as well the influence of the corporations that benefit the most from U.S. empire.
The evidence of significant damage to Syria is starting to come in from independent journalists.
One target, at which 76 missiles were fired, was the Barzeh scientific research centre in heavily-populated Damascus itself, which Dunford claimed was involved in the “development, production and testing of chemical and biological warfare technology.”Further on, Barlett writes:
This ‘target’ is in the middle of a densely-inhabited area of Damascus. According to Damascus resident Dr. (of business and economy) Mudar Barakat, who knows the area in question, “the establishment consists of a number of buildings. One of them is a teaching institute. They are very close to the homes of the people around.”
Regarding the actual nature of the buildings bombed, Syrian media, SANA, describes the Pharmaceutical and Chemical Industries Research Institute as “centered on preparing the chemical compositions for cancer drugs.” The destruction of this institute is particularly bitter, as, under the criminal western sanctions, cancer medicines sales to Syria are prohibited.
Sunday, April 15, 2018
- Syria: What Just Happened by Eric Zuesse from Strategic Culture Foundation.
- The Democratic “Deep State” Takeover and the Moribund State of American Politics by Danny Haiphong from Black Agenda Report.
The American ruling class is in a panic over its waning global influence and has consistently sought to obliterate any opposition to its rule. Conditions of decline are also evident inside of the American nation-state. The hoarding of wealth by the top 1 percent has reached astronomical levels. Mass shootings dominate headlines. Teachers in West Virginia, Kentucky, and Oklahoma have all partaken in strikes against the austerity and privatization currently ravaging public education. All American imperialism has to offer is more war, more poverty, and more suppression of the legitimate problems afflicting workers and poor people.
- Washington strikes Syria again: was that it? by Aram Mirzaei from A bird's eye view of the Vineyard.
- An Excessive Emphasis on Theatrics Exposes US Hypocrisy on Syria by Peter Korzun from Strategic Culture Foundation.
- Here’s why chemical attack in Syria’s Douma is just another FAKE of White Helmets from Inside Syria Media Center.
- First Step to Resolving Syria Crisis: Distribute Copies of the UN Charter to Washington, London and Paris by Stephen Gowans from What's Left.
Domination is the driving force of US Empire builders. But today’s empire is built on fragile economic foundations. An Empire, which has aimed to dominate the world for the long duration, now stumbles over a series of military defeats abroad and increasingly relies on instilling fear, intimidation and propaganda on its domestic citizenry to regain its dominance.This method of choice works every time, and 9/11 was their master feat. Petras arrives at this distressing conclusion.
Inculcating fear, especially at home, is the method of choice.
By the time the masses finally discover that the greatest menace stalking the country is the fear-mongering propaganda: They will have read an epitaph for their untimely nuclear death.
Saturday, April 14, 2018
Is the Empire's Deep State merely using the attack on Syria to further prepare for Trump's removal? (fully edited version)
The other day I was astonished while viewing Fox New's Tucker Carlson rationally arguing against the official narrative regarding a chemical attack on Syrian's by President Assad of Syria.
My immediate reaction was that he was going to be fired. Then doubts set in. Why didn't Fox News immediately cut his microphone off with some phony excuse? What if Fox News ordered him to do this? Carlson doesn't look at all strained by opposing the official line. This sort of departure from scripted broadcasts by "talking heads" in corporate media is unprecedented in recent decades.
This morning, after digesting the latest attack on Syria by forces of the US Empire, I viewed this astonishing video by Jeffrey Sachs who I regard as a member of the Deep State:
I began to think that a move is on by the Deep State to terrify Americans and to prepare for the removal of Trump as head of state.
Then I read this article entitled "Airstrikes and Slime Balls" from a dissident British website about a book review by the former FBI head James Comey entitled A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies and Leadership. Now I am rather convinced that the Deep State planned this scam on the American people by pressuring Trump to execute this latest missile attack on Syria as another step in their planned removal of Trump from office. In other words, the Deep State (top financiers, corporate executives, and their ideologue followers who control every institution of our society) used a false-flag attack on Syria in which the real target was Trump. It was not a serious attack on Syria, nor was it designed to harm Russians because the attack was well coordinated with the Russian government. Preliminary indications are that the missile attack inflicted minimal damage.
The Deep State's underlying thought process was something like this: Americans are always prepared to "throw the rascals out" of office when they are offended by the existing administration by electing members of the other party in the next election. So the Deep State is using this event to increase the widespread disapproval of Trump by pressuring him into a missile attack which would likely bring the US Empire in military conflict with Russia. Indeed, there has been widespread fear among all Americans (both ordinary and more informed) of an attack that could provoke a war with the Russians.
The catch is that the other party, the Democratic Party or the "good cop", is the favored party to pursue policies by the Empire's Deep State. (Trump's election was a mistake caused by the Deep State's underestimation of the widespread disapproval of aggressive policies supported by Hillary Clinton.) My thinking is that the Deep State is preparing for the removal of Trump from office at least by the next election or even sooner via an impeachment process.
- Syria - Manipulated Videos Fail To Launch World War III - Updated by Bernhard from Moon of Alabama.
- "People Are Dancing In The Streets": Syria, Russia, Iran Shrug Off "More Limited Than Feared" Airstrikes by Tyler Durden from ZeroHedge.
- The new US concept of a “perfect” mission: 32 out of 103 by "The Saker" from A bird's eye view of the Vineyard.
- Trump Attacks Syria With Chemical Experts on the Way by Joe Lauria from ConsortiumNews.
- US and imperialist allies launch strikes against Syria by editors of World Socialist Web Site.
- Are We Over the US/UK Fomented Crisis In Syria? by Paul Craig Roberts. (Credit must go to an activist for this post.)
The US ambassador to Russia said that the US strikes were coordinated with Russia to avoid a great power confrontation.
- Anger grows over union effort to sabotage Oklahoma teachers strike by Jerry White from World Socialist Web Site.
- I Love the Smell of Imperial Meltdown in the Morning by Aidan O'Brien from CounterPunch.
Friday, April 13, 2018
- What Price for Collapse of the Empire? by "The Saker" from The Unz Review.
We are currently living the most dangerous days in human history. You think that this is hyperbole?
- Why even a trade war won’t derail Made in China 2025 by Pepe Escobar from Asia Times.
- China could be the wild card if US attacks Syria by Christina Lin from Asia Times.
... high-tech weaponry and “smart” bombs have dehumanized war and turned it into a video-game-like experience, “in which terms such a ‘surgical strikes’ or ‘collateral damage’ camouflage the actual brutality and consequences of aerial attacks.” War thus becomes a more manageable solution than other non-military options for US leaders, as they are geographically far removed, lack understanding of the complexity and horrors of war when it’s in one’s territory, and turn war into a more scientific, clean, and enlightened endeavor.
However, this experience is not shared by others with recent memories of mass-scale war horrors and conflict in their own territories, and they may react to military threats in a powerful way.
- War, lies and censorship by Andre Damon from World Socialist Web Site.
The real target of the censorship campaign is not “fake news,” but true news—that is, genuine journalism and independent reporting, which by its very nature contradicts the lies of the war-mongers in Washington, London and Paris.
- Gun Profiteers: Who’s Getting Rich off the US Gun Crisis? by Derek Seidman from LittleSis.
It’s not that the American people are inherently stupid to believe such absurd claims; it’s that they are woefully misinformed by a media machine that is marching in lockstep – sometimes even owned – by the military industrial complex. Mark Twain summed up the Catch-22 situation confronting Americans: “If you don't read the newspaper, you're uninformed. If you read the newspaper, you're mis-informed.”Bridge arrives at this final conclusion:
And it is not just the run-of-the-mill news sources that are serving as cheerleaders for imperialistic regime change operations. The purportedly intelligent ‘thinking man’ publications are also peddling a shameless pro-war stance, which takes the government line for granted.
This only serves to prove that the United States, and its people, learned absolutely nothing from the Iraq War, which saw the same brazen disregard for legal precedent by launching an attack against Saddam Hussein in 2003, the consequences of which we are experiencing to this day. As the UN weapon inspectors were on the ground, practically screaming that they could not locate weapons of mass destruction, the Bush administration shrugged off these uncomfortable truths and carried out its diabolical designs anyways.I would go much further back to the assassinations of John and Robert Kennedy, Martin Luther King, Malcolm X and many activists. Then there was the fairy tale about the biggest false-flag event of them all: 9/11.
In reality, the US did learn one valuable lesson from the Iraq War. It learned it can manipulate the opinions of the people to an astonishing degree. By using the entire media leviathan to coordinate a hate campaign against one state leader, in this case Bashar Assad, it can make the people forget legal precedent, not to mention common sense.