Societies generate their own economies of tolerable cruelties and injustices. Poverty, for instance, will be allowed, as long a sufficient number of individuals are profiting. To an extent, crime and violence can be allowed to thrive. In the United States, the economy of tolerable massacres, executed by military grade weapons, is considerable and seemingly resilient. Its participants all partake in administering it, playing their bleak roles under the sacred banner of constitutional freedom and psychobabble.
Just as prison reform tends to keep pace with the expansion of the bloated system, the gun argument in the US keeps pace, barely, with each massacre. With each round of killings, a script is activated: initial horror, hot tears of indignation of never again, and then, the stalemate on reform till the next round of killings can be duly accommodated. “It isn’t enough to reiterate the plain truth that the assault weapons used in mass shootings must be banned and confiscated,” observes Benjamin Kunkel. “Instead, every fresh atrocity must be recruited into everyone’s preferred single-factor sociological narrative.”
In Uvalde, Texas, a teenage gunman (they do get younger) made his way into an elementary school and delivered an unforgettable May 24 lesson. When he had finished at Robb Elementary School, 19 children and 2 adults had perished. But even this effort, in the premier league ranking of school killings, failed to top the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut in December 2012. On that occasion, 26 lost their lives.
The horror and indignant tears were duly cued. President of the United States, Joe Biden: “Why are we willing to live with this carnage? Why do we keep letting this happen?” he rhetorically intoned at a press conference. “For every parent, for every citizen in this country, we have to make it clear to every elected official in this country: it’s time to act.” This would involve the passing of “common sense gun laws” and combating the gun lobby.
The next day, Vice President Kamala Harris reiterated the formula. “We must work together to create an America where everyone feels safe in their community, where children feel safe in their schools.”
The politicians are duly accompanied by the talking heads, such as Ron Avi Astor, described by NPR as “a mass shooting expert”. With this unsavoury appellation, we are told that this UCLA professor is puzzled as to why negligible changes to gun laws have taken place since Sandy Hook. In coping with such puzzlement, he suggests an old academic trick: reframe the problem to lessen its gravity.
With some gusto, Astor proceeds to say that schools in the US have been doing fabulously well in coping with violence – as long as you take the long view. “If you look over the last 20 years, really since Columbine, there’s been a massive, massive, massive … decrease in victimization and violence in schools.” Diving into the silver lining in his own massive way, he finds “reductions” in violence in the order of 50 to 70 percent.
It never takes long for the economy of tolerable massacres to generate the next round of scrappy arguments, with the corpses barely cold. The common one is that of shooting frequency. Was this a good year relative to the last? This year, the United States has suffered 27.
Since 2018, Education Week, showing how school deaths should very much feature in planning curricula, has taken a grim interest in the whole matter. Reading its compiled figures – “heartbreaking, but important work”, the journal claims – is much like dipping into stock market returns with the requisite amount of sensitivity. In 2021, there were 34 school shootings, a real bumper year. In 2020, it was poor on that front: a modest 10. Both 2019 and 2018 saw higher returns: 24 each.
If you wish to be entertained by the ghoulish nature of it all, Education Week also gives us some infotainment with a graphic on “Where the Shootings Happened.” Dots feature on a map of the country. “The size of the dots correlates to the number of people killed or injured. Click on each dot for more information.” Where would we be but for such valuable services?
To give credence to the seemingly immutable nature of this economy on shootings, platoons of commentators, equipped with various skills, argue about responses, most showing that common sense, in this field, is a noble dream. The conservative National Reviewtakes the view that “tougher background checks” would hardly have worked for the Uvalde shooter. There was no paper trail flagging him as a threat, nothing to suggest that he should have been prevented as a “legal adult from purchasing a firearm.” The implicit suggestion here: only nutters kill.
The business of guns is the business of a particular American sensibility. With the school shooting still fresh, various members of the GOP and Donald Trump affirmed their interest in appearing at a Memorial Day weekend event hosted by the National Rifle Association. In a statement on the shootings, the NRA expressed its “deepest sympathies” for the families and victims of “this horrific and evil crime” but preferred to describe the killings as the responsibility “of a lone, deranged criminal.” Leave gun regulation alone; focus on school security instead.
With that brief formality discharged, the NRA expressed its delight at its forthcoming Annual Meetings and Exhibits event to take place at the George R. Brown Convention Center, Houston between May 27 and May 29. “The Exhibit Hall is open all three days and will showcase over 14 acres of the latest guns and gear from the most popular companies in the Industry.” It promises to be fun for the whole family.
Then comes the thorny matter of definitions, a sure way to kill off any sensible action. From boffin to reactionary, no one can quite accept what a “school shooting” is. Non-profit outfits such as the New York-based Everytown for Gun Safety include any discharge of a firearm at school as part of the definition. “In 2022,” the organisation claims, “there were at least 77 incidents of gunfire on school grounds, resulting in 14 deaths and 45 injuries nationally.”
Everytown for Gun Safety is keen to paint a picture of annual murderous rampage: 3,500 children and teens being shot and killed; 15,000 shot and injured. Some 3 million children in the US are exposed to shootings each year.
The tone underlying such a message is much at odds with the rest easy approach taken by Astor – what Australians would call the “she’ll be right, mate” caste of mind. It is certainly Panglossian in nature, aligning with the views of cognitive psychologist Steven Pinker, optimist extraordinaire on the human condition. Taken holistically, he keeps insisting, we live in far better, less violent times than our forebears. Such massacres as those at Sandy Hook should not be taken to mean that schools have become less safe. “People always think that violence has increased because they reason from memorable examples rather than global data.” For Pinker, the 2013 joint survey by the Departments of Justice and Education on such statistics as rates of victimisation since 1992 to non-fatal victimisations was sufficient rebuke against the pessimists and moaners.
The Uvalde massacre will, in time, be absorbed by this economy of tolerable violence. The anger will dissipate; collective amnesia, if not simple indifference, will exert its dulling sleep. The dead, except for the personally affected, will go the way of others, buried in the confetti and scrapings of statistics.
There is a reason why Israel is insistent on linking the series of attacks carried out by Palestinians recently to a specific location, namely the Jenin refugee camp in the northern West Bank. By doing so, the embattled Naftali Bennett’s government can simply order another deadly military operation in Jenin to reassure its citizens that the situation is under control.
Indeed, on April 9, the Israeli army has stormed the Jenin refugee camp, killing a Palestinian and wounding ten others. However, Israel’s problem is much bigger than Jenin.
If we examine the events starting with the March 22 stabbing attack in the southern city of Beersheba (Bir Al Saba’) – which resulted in the death of four – and ending with the killing of three Israelis in Tel Aviv – including two army officers – we will reach an obvious conclusion: these attacks must have been, to some extent, coordinated.
Spontaneous Palestinian retaliation to the violence of the Israeli occupation rarely follows this pattern in terms of timing or style. All the attacks, with the exception of Beersheba, were carried out using firearms. The shooters, as indicated by the amateur videos of some of the events and statements by Israeli eyewitnesses, were well-trained and were acting with great composure.
An example was the March 27 Hadera event, carried out by two cousins, Ayman and Ibrahim Ighbariah, from the Arab town of Umm al-Fahm, inside Israel. Israeli media reported of the unmistakable skills of the attackers, armed with weapons that, according to the Israeli news agency, Tazpit Press Service, cost more than $30,000.
Unlike Palestinian attacks carried out during the Second Palestinian Intifada (2000-05) in response to Israeli violence in the occupied territories, the latest attacks are generally more pinpointed, seek police and military personnel and clearly aimed at shaking Israel’s false sense of security and undermining the country’s intelligence services. In the Bnei Brak attack, on March 29, for example, an Israeli woman who was at the scene told reporters that “the militant asked us to move away from the place because he did not want to target women or children.”
While Israeli intelligence reports have recently warned of a “wave of terrorism” ahead of the holy month of Ramadan, they clearly had little conception of what type of violence, or where and how Palestinians would strike.
Following the Beersheba attack, Israeli officials referred to Daesh’s responsibility, a convenient claim considering that Daesh had also claimed responsibility. This theory was quickly marginalized, as it became obvious that the other Palestinian attackers had other political affiliations or, as in the Bnei Brak case, no known affiliation at all.
The confusion and misinformation continued for days. Shortly after the Tel Aviv attack, Israeli media, citing official sources, spoke of two attackers, alleging that one was trapped in a nearby building. This was untrue as there was only one attacker and he was killed, though hours later in a different city.
A number of Palestinian workers were quickly rounded up in Tel Aviv on suspicion of being the attackers simply because they looked Arab, evidence of the chaotic Israeli approach. Indeed, following each event, total mayhem ensued, with large mobs of armed Israelis taking to the streets looking for anyone with Arab features to apprehend or to beat senseless.
Israeli officials contributed to the frenzy, with far-right politicians, such as the extremist Itamar Ben Gvir, leading hordes of other extremists in rampages in occupied Jerusalem.
Instead of urging calm and displaying confidence, the country’s own Prime Minister called, on March 30, on ordinary Israelis to arm themselves. “Whoever has a gun license, this is the time to carry it,” he said in a video statement. However, if Israel’s solution to any form of Palestinian resistance was more guns, Palestinians would have been pacified long ago.
To placate angry Israelis, the Israeli military raided the city and refugee camp of Jenin on many occasions, each time leaving several dead and wounded Palestinians behind, including many civilians. They include the child Imad Hashash, 15, killed on August 24 while filming the invasion on his mobile phone. The exact same scenario played out on April 9.
However, it was an exercise in futility, as it was Israeli violence in Jenin throughout the years that led to the armed resistance that continues to emanate from the camp. Palestinians, whether in Jenin or elsewhere, fight back because they are denied basic human rights, have no political horizon, live in extreme poverty, have no true leadership and feel abandoned by the so-called international community.
The Palestinian Authority of Mahmoud Abbas seems to be entirely removed from the masses. Statements by Abbas reflect his detachment from the reality of Israeli violence, military occupation and apartheid throughout Palestine. True to form, Abbas quickly condemned the Tel Aviv attack, as he did the previous ones, making the same reference every time regarding the need to maintain “stability” and to prevent “further deterioration of the situation”, according to the official Wafa news agency.
What stability is Abbas referring to, when Palestinian suffering has been compounded by growing settler violence, illegal settlement expansion, land theft, and, thanks to recent international events, food insecurity as well?
Israeli officials and media are, once again, conveniently placing the blame largely on Jenin, a tiny stretch of an overpopulated area. By doing so, Israel wants to give the impression that the new phenomenon of Palestinian retaliatory attacks is confined to a single place, one that is adjacent to the Israeli border and can be easily ‘dealt with’.
An Israeli military operation in the camp may serve Bennett’s political agenda, convey a sense of strength, and win back some in his disenchanted political constituency. But it is all a temporary fix. Attacking Jenin now will make no difference in the long run. After all, the camp rose from the ashes of its near-total destruction by the Israeli military in April 2002.
The renewed Palestinian attacks speak of a much wider geography: Naqab, Umm Al Fahm, the West Bank. The seeds of this territorial connectivity are linked to the Israeli war of last May and the subsequent Palestinian rebellion, which erupted in every part of Palestine, including Palestinian communities inside Israel.
Israel’s problem is its insistence on providing short-term military solutions to a long-term problem, itself resulting from these very ‘military solutions’. If Israel continues to subjugate the Palestinian people under the current system of military occupation and deepening apartheid, Palestinians will surely continue to respond until their oppressive reality is changed. No amount of Israeli violence can alter this truth.
Interesting Teach-in, well, discussion, with the speakers below. You will hear Scott Ritter divert from some of these speakers saying that the actions by Russia in Ukraine are legal, ethical and necessary.
Here is Ritter, just interviewed, Strategic Culture. Note that Ritter is called a traitor (for looking at the Russian military and political angles) and a Putin Stooge (this is it for Western Woke Culture) and he’s been banned on Twitter for a day, and then back up, and the seesaw of social media continues (more McCarthy: The New Democratic Opperative). You do not have to agree with militarism, but here we are, so the Western Woke Fascist Media and the Mendacious Political Class want nothing to do with, well, military minds looking at Russia (Ritter studied Russia big-time, and studied their military big time, both Soviet Union and Russia). He also is married to a Georgian. But again, this is it for the Western Intellect (sic).
Like we can’t watch Graham Phillips work, without being called, well, Russian Stooges. The Mainlining Mendacious Media calls him a Russian Sympathizer. Imagine that. For years,, he’s been a sympathizer (he is British, speaks Russian and goes to the actual places with camera in hand. Look at the one on Ossetia, the breakaway republic of Georgia. It is delightful (note the dinner he is served by the typical family):
Here, from, “The Ukrainian Conflict Is a U.S./NATO Proxy War, but One Which Russia Is Poised to Win Decisively – Scott Ritter” by Finian Cunningham, April 9, 2022
Question: Do you think that Russia has a just cause in launching its “special military operation” in Ukraine on February 24?
Scott Ritter: I believe Russia has articulated a cognizable claim of preemptive collective self-defense under Article 51 of the UN Charter. The threat posed by NATO expansion, and Ukraine’s eight-year bombardment of the civilians of the Donbass fall under this umbrella.
Question: Do you think Russia has legitimate concerns about the Pentagon sponsoring biological weapons programs in laboratories in Ukraine?
Scott Ritter: The Pentagon denies any biological weapons program, but admits biological research programs on Ukrainian soil. Documents captured by Russia have allegedly uncovered the existence of programs the components of which could be construed as having offensive biological warfare applications. The U.S. should be required to explain the purpose of these programs.
Question: What do you make of allegations in Western media that Russian troops committed war crimes in Bucha and other Ukrainian cities? It is claimed that Russian forces summarily executed civilians.
Scott Ritter: All claims of war crimes must be thoroughly investigated, including Ukrainian allegations that Russia killed Ukrainian civilians in Bucha. However, the data available about the Bucha incident does not sustain the Ukrainian claims, and as such, the media should refrain from echoing these claims as fact until a proper investigation of the evidence is conducted, either by the media, or unbiased authorities.
While one may be able to mount a legal challenge to Russia’s contention that its joint operation with Russia’s newly recognized independent nations of Lugansk and Donetsk constitutes a “regional security or self-defense organization” as regards “anticipatory collective self-defense actions” under Article 51, there can be no doubt as to the legitimacy of Russia’s contention that the Russian-speaking population of the Donbass had been subjected to a brutal eight-year-long bombardment that had killed thousands of people.
Moreover, Russia claims to have documentary proof that the Ukrainian Army was preparing for a massive military incursion into the Donbass which was pre-empted by the Russian-led “special military operation.” [OSCE figures show an increase of government shelling of the area in the days before Russia moved in.]
Finally, Russia has articulated claims about Ukraine’s intent regarding nuclear weapons, and in particular efforts to manufacture a so-called “dirty bomb”, which have yet to be proven or disproven. [Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky made a reference to seeking a nuclear weapon in February at the Munich Security Conference.]
The bottom line is that Russia has set forth a cognizable claim under the doctrine of anticipatory collective self defense, devised originally by the U.S. and NATO, as it applies to Article 51 which is predicated on fact, not fiction. (Ritter, Russia, Ukraine & the Law of War: Crime of Aggression)
All the speakers, except maybe excluding John Kiriakou, have great points to make: Andrei Martyanov, expert on Russian military affairs, author The Real Revolution in Military Affairs; Chris Kaspar de Ploeg, author Ukraine in the Crossfire; James Carden, Adviser U.S.-Russia bilateral commission during the Obama administration & Ex. Editor of The American Committee for East-West accord; Scott Ritter, former U.S. Marine Intelligence officer, UN Arms Inspector, exposed WMD lie in U.S. push to invade Iraq; John Kiriakou, CIA whistleblower and Radio Sputnik host; Ron Ridenour, peace activist, author The Russian Peace Threat; Gerald Horne, historian, author, Chair of History and African American Studies at the University of Houston; Jeremy Kuzmarov, CAM Managing Editor and author of The Russians Are Coming, Again: The First Cold War as Tragedy, the Second as Farce.
Imagine, the provocations.
The US government invoked self-defense as a legal justification for its invasion of Panama. Several scholars and observers have opined that the invasion was illegal under international law.
Oh, those Freedom Fighters, the back-shooting, civilian-killing, village-burning Contras:
Appendix A: Background on United States Funding of the Contras
In examining the allegations in the Mercury News and elsewhere, it is important to understand the timing of funding of the Contras by the United States. The following dates explain the periods during which the United States government provided funding to the Contras or cut off such funding.
Anastasio Somoza Debayle was the leader of Nicaragua from 1967 until July 1979, when he was overthrown by the Sandinistas. When President Ronald Reagan took office in January 1981, he promptly canceled the final $15 million payment of a $75 million aid package to Nicaragua, reversing the Carter administration’s policy towards Nicaragua. On November 17, 1981, President Reagan signed National Security Directive 17, authorizing provision of covert support to anti-Sandinista forces. On December 1, 1981, Reagan signed a document intending to conceal the November 17 authorization of anti-Sandinista operations. The document characterized the United States’ goal in Nicaragua as that of interdicting the flow of arms from Nicaragua to El Salvador, where leftist guerrillas were receiving aid from Sandinista forces.
In late 1982, Edward P. Boland, Chairman of the House Select Committee on Intelligence, introduced an amendment to the Fiscal Year 1983 Defense Appropriations bill that prohibited the CIA, the principal conduit of covert American support for the Contras, from spending funds “for the purpose of overthrowing the government of Nicaragua.” However, the CIA could continue to support the Contras if it claimed that the purpose was something other than to overthrow the government. In December 1983, a compromise was reached and Congress passed a funding cap for fiscal year 1984 of $24 million for aid to the Contras, an amount significantly lower than what the Reagan administration wanted, with the possibility that the Administration could seek supplemental funds later.
This funding was insufficient to support the Administration’s “Contra program” and the decision was made to approach other countries for monetary support. In April 1984, Robert McFarlane convinced Saudi Arabia to contribute $1 million per month to the Contras through a secret bank account set up by Lt. Col. Oliver North.
In October 1984, the second Boland amendment took effect. It prohibited any military or paramilitary support for the Contras from October 3, 1984, through December 19, 1985. As a result, the CIA and Department of Defense (DOD) began withdrawing personnel from Central America. During this time, however, the National Security Council continued to provide support to the Contras.
In August 1985, Congress approved $25 million in humanitarian aid to the Contras, with the proviso that the State Department, and not the CIA or the DOD, administer the aid. President Reagan created the Nicaraguan Humanitarian Assistance Office (NHAO) to supply the humanitarian aid. In September 1985, Oliver North began using the Salvadoran air base at Ilopango for Contra resupply efforts.
On October 5, 1986, a plane loaded with supplies for the Contras, financed by private benefactors, was shot down by Nicaraguan soldiers. On board were weapons and other lethal supplies and three Americans. One American, Eugene Hasenfus, claimed while in custody that he worked for the CIA. The Reagan Administration denied any knowledge of the private resupply efforts.
On October 17, 1986, Congress approved $100 million in funds for the Contras. In 1987, after the discovery of private resupply efforts orchestrated by the National Security Council and Oliver North, Congress ceased all but “non-lethal” aid in 1987. The war between the Sandinistas and the Contras ended with a cease-fire in 1990.
Although the Contras were often referred to as one group, several distinct factions made up the Contras.
In August 1980, Colonel Enrique Bermudez, a former Colonel in Somoza’s National Guard, united other former National Guard officers and anti-Sandinista civilians to form the Fuerza Democratica Nicaraguense (FDN). This group was known as the Northern Front because it was based in Honduras. In February 1983, Adolfo Calero became the head of the FDN.
In April 1982, Eden Pastora split from the Sandinista regime and organized the Democratic Revolutionary Alliance (ARDE) and the Sandinista Revolutionary Front (FRS), which declared war on the Sandinista regime. Pastora’s group was based in Costa Rica and along the southern border of Nicaragua, and therefore became known as the Southern Front. Pastora refused to work with Bermudez, claiming that Bermudez, as a member of the former Somoza regime, was politically tainted. The CIA decided to support the FDN and generally declined to support the ARDE.
Again, let’s think about what is actually happening in Ukraine, and where the country is, and what the Russians in that country are facing, and, gulp, where is Ukraine? Thousands of miles away, like Panama and Nicaragua are from USA?
Here, a Dutch journalist:
Read her work:
As the war in Ukraine rages on, I visited the republics of Donetsk and Luhansk as an embedded reporter with the Russian army.
Both of the republics are the trigger of the current conflict.
Russian President Vladimir Putin declared their independence on February 24, 2022, something a lot of people were waiting for since the CIA backed coup in Ukraine of February 2014. That coup had resulted in the ouster of Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych and new laws forcing the Ukrainian language on Russian-speaking residents. Luhansk and Donetsk consequently voted on their independence and Ukraine attacked them, precipitating the war.
European support for the so-called Maidan coup was considerable: the Dutch MP Hans van Baalen from the ruling Dutch VVD party (Mark Rutte), for example, was at the protests that helped trigger the coup, as was the former Prime Minister of Belgium Guy Verhofstadt. Both were seen cheering on the crowds, surrounded by right-extremists on the stage, shouting “democracy.”
So what is preemptive defense? Right to Protect? What is big ugly history of Nazi’s in Poland and Ukraine? What is that all about, uh, Americanum?
So, plans by ZioLensky for Dirty Bombs from the wasteland of Chernobyl, not a provocation?
How many were immolated in Waco? Why? Mount Carmel Center became engulfed in flames. The fire resulted in the deaths of 76 Branch Davidians, including 25 children, two pregnant women, and David Koresh himself.
Oh, the impatience of the USA, FBI, ATF, Attorney General, Bill Clinton, the lot of them.
Or, dropping bombs on Philly, to kill, well, black people:
How many died, and what happened to the city block? Bombs dropped on our own people, again! Police dropped a bomb on a West Philly house in 1985. The fire caused by the explosion killed 11 people, an atrocity that Philadelphia still grapples with today.
Oh, the irony.
Black Lives Do Not Matter, here, or in Ukraine. Below, representation of those lives killed by cops, of all races, in one year. Many of these in a year, 60 percent, did not involve a person with a gun, and a huge number, 40 percent, involved people going throug mental health crises.
Yes, the first casualty of war is truth, and with the USA as the Empire of Lies and Hate, the casualty is now a larger framework of a Zombie Nation of virtue signalers and those who want the fake news to be real, please!
So far as I know, this is the first war in modern history with no objective, principled coverage in mainstream media of day-to-day events and their context. None. It is morn-to-night propaganda, disinformation and lies of omission — most of it fashioned by the Nazi-infested Zelensky regime in Kiev and repeated uncritically as fact.
There is one thing worse than this degenerate state of affairs. It is the extent to which the media’s malpractice is perfectly fine to most Americans. Tell us what to think and believe no matter if it is true, they say, and we will think and believe it. Show us some pictures, for images are all.
There are larger implications to consider here. Critical as it is that we understand this conflict, Ukraine is a mirror in which we see ourselves as we have become. For more Americans than I wish were so, reality forms only in images. These Americans are no longer occupants of their own lives. Risking a paradox, what they take to be reality is detached from reality.
This majority — and it is almost certainly a majority — has no thoughts or views except those first verified through the machinery of manufactured images and “facts.” Television screens, the pages of purportedly authoritative newspapers, the air waves of government-funded radio stations — NPR, the BBC — serve to certify realities that do not have to be real, truths that do not have to be true.
Before proceeding to Bucha, the outrage of the moment, I must reproduce a quotation from that propaganda-is-O.K. piece The Times published in its March 3 editions. It is from a Twitter user who was distressed that it became public that the Ghost of Kiev turned out to be a ghost and the Snake Island heroes didn’t do much by way of holding the fort.
‘Why can’t we just let people believe some things?’ this thoughtful man or woman wanted to know. What is wrong, in other words, if thinking and believing nice things that aren’t true makes people feel better? (Patrick Lawrence, Special to Consortium News)
Daniel Boorstin’s The Image: A Guide to Pseudo- Events in America, has been cited by yours truly several times. It is a completely amazing work, sixty years ahead of its time, and it is almost completely ignored!.
I describe the world of our making, how we have used our wealth, our literacy, our technology, and our progress to create the thicket of unreality which stands between us and the facts of life. …. The reporter’s task is to find a way to weave these threads of unreality into a fabric the reader will not recognize as entirely unreal. (Boorstin)
Three separate, deadly Palestinian attacks in Israeli cities in a week have elicited a predictable response. The Israeli army has drafted large numbers of extra soldiers into the West Bank and around Gaza, Palestinian territories already under decades of brutal military occupation.
But the fact that, unusually, two of the attacks were carried out by Israeli citizens – members of a large Palestinian minority whose rights are severely circumscribed and inferior to those of the Jewish majority – has raised the stakes considerably for the Israeli right.
A total of 11 Israelis died in the attacks a few days apart in the cities of Beersheba, Hadera and Bnei Brak, a suburb of Tel Aviv. Trigger-happy Israeli forces killed three Palestinians in separate incidents on Thursday, in the immediate wake of the attacks.
The lethal attacks were an opportunity for Naftali Bennett, the far-right leader who snatched the Israeli premiership from Benjamin Netanyahu last summer, to prove his credentials to his party’s main constituency: Jewish settlers determined to drive Palestinians off their lands and reclaim a supposed biblical birthright.
In a video statement, Bennett told “whoever has a gun licence” – meaning overwhelmingly Jewish citizens – “this is the time to carry a gun”. And if that wasn’t enough, he went on to announce that the government was considering “a larger framework to involve civilian volunteers who want to help and be of assistance”.
What that means in practice is not hard to decipher. Nearly a year ago, the intensification of long-running moves to ethnically cleanse the Palestinian neighbourhood of Sheikh Jarrah in occupied East Jerusalem became one of the triggers for the worst inter-communal violence in Israel in at least a generation.
Palestinian citizens who staged angry demonstrations found themselves not just facing the expected crackdown from Israel’s paramilitary police, but street violence from far-right Jewish mobs that appeared to be operating in tandem with Israeli security forces.
For the first time it looked as though the Israeli leadership was moving a key feature of the occupation inside the Green Line.
The aim of both the settlers and the Israeli state is the same: to drive Palestinians from their homes so Jewish settlers can take over the vacated land.
Last spring, the use of that same model inside Israel became harder to disguise. The Israeli government appeared to be contracting out parts of its domestic security to the same fanatical and violent settlers, allowing them to be bussed into Palestinian communities inside Israel unhindered. There they acted as vigilantes.
They smashed Palestinian shops, chanted “Death to the Arabs“, and beat up Palestinian citizens who crossed their path. At the same time, Israeli politicians from across the spectrum incited against the Palestinian minority.
Now Bennett gives every appearance of hoping to exploit the three attacks to put this earlier arrangement on a more formal footing.
Notably, a “Barel Rangers” militia has already been formed in the Negev region, in Israel’s south, where one of the attacks occurred. The founder, a former police officer, set out its purpose in a social media post: “When your life is under threat, it’s only you and the terrorist. You are the policeman, the judge and the executioner.”
Another militia has recently been established in Lod, a city near Tel Aviv, that saw the worst violence last May.
Playing with fire
Bennett’s call for “civilian volunteers” to defend the Jewish state was presumably intended to echo Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky, who has urged Ukrainian civilians to fight the invading Russian army. Bennett may hope that in the current international climate there will be little criticism of Jewish militias acting similarly.
But whereas Zelensky has called on Ukrainians to fight foreign invaders, Bennett is rallying militias to attack his country’s own citizens, based on their ethnicity. He is playing with fire, stoking a mood of civil war in which one side, Jewish Israelis, have the weapons and state resources, while the other – the Palestinian minority – is largely defenceless.
Notably, after the second recent attack in the Jewish city of Hadera on Tuesday – by two Palestinian citizens – a mob formed chanting “Death to the Arabs”.
Where this might lead was underscored by a retired army general, Uzi Dayan, now a member of the Israeli parliament for Netanyahu’s Likud party. He warned all of Israel’s 1.8 million Palestinian citizens to “be careful”. They faced, he said, another Nakba, or Catastrophe – the mass ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from their homeland by Israeli militias and the army in 1948.
“If we reach a civil war situation, things will end in one word and a situation you know, which is Nakba,” he said. “This is what will happen in the end.” He added: “We are stronger. We are holding back on a lot of things.” The ethnic cleansing associated with the Nakba “was not completed”, he noted.
That is not a situation Palestinian citizens will be able to avoid if Israeli leaders will it. Many in the minority have been afraid to leave their homes, go to work or venture into Jewish areas – which is most of the country – for fear of reprisals. And that is precisely because Bennett and Dayan represent a vast swathe of opinion in Israel that views Palestinians – even Palestinian citizens – as the enemy.
The measures being “held back”, as Dayan phrased it, could include not only more state-backed violence but efforts to strip the Palestinian minority of even their degraded citizenship status.
For nearly two decades, leaders of the far-right such as Avigdor Lieberman have been calling for loyalty pledges and transfer policies to undermine the rights of Palestinian citizens. The controversial nation-state law of 2018 chipped away further at those rights. The stage has already been set for a renewed assault on citizenship.
Lethal attacks carried out by members of Israel’s Palestinian minority, like the two that occurred in quick succession, are rare. They are invariably carried out by what Israel terms “lone wolves”, deeply disillusioned and alienated individuals, rather than organised by Palestinian movements inside Israel.
The Palestinian minority has preferred to deal with the systematic discrimination and oppression of living as a non-Jewish population in a self-declared Jewish state using the limited legal and political tools at its disposal.
Over the past year, more and more human rights and legal groups have come forward declaring that Israel is an apartheid state, both in the occupied territories and inside Israel itself. The structural discrimination exposed by the Palestinian minority has played a crucial part in helping these organisations reach such a severe conclusion.
Leaders like Bennett, therefore, have every reason to try to exaggerate the significance posed by these attacks, suggesting as he did this week that they are part of a new “terror wave“. He has vowed to expand the scope of draconian administration detention orders – imprisonment without charge or evidence made public – to deal with this supposed wave.
Making the case more plausible for him, the three Palestinian citizens involved in the two attacks – in Beersheba and Hadera – had loose affiliations with the Islamic State (IS) group.
Grain of salt
But in reality, while the three perpetrators appear to have had ideological sympathy with IS – one even tried unsuccessfully to reach a training camp in Syria in 2016 – the group has no meaningful presence in the Palestinian population, either in the occupied territories or in Israel.
Identification with IS among a tiny section of the Palestinian public peaked five years ago, when the group looked like it might be offering a successful model for unseating the region’s corrupt and sclerotic Arab tyrants. IS’s failures and its brutality soon eroded even that small pool of support.
Assessments are that, despite its intensive spying and surveillance of Palestinians on social media, Israel has been able to identify only a few dozen IS supporters, who are in its prisons. Even in those cases, most have been detained because of ideological sympathy with the group, not because of tangible ties.
And in any case, IS has never expressed any pressing interest in attacks on Israel. A statement in 2016 made clear that the group prioritised struggle against Muslim governments that had, in its view, broken with the central tenets of Islam.
By contrast, Islamist Palestinian factions are committed to liberating the Palestinian homeland, not trying to reinvent a mythic golden era of unified Islamic rule across the Middle East. They are Palestinian national liberation movements, not jihadists.
For that reason alone, the claim by IS of responsibility for the two attacks needs to be taken with a large grain of salt. The group has an incentive to suggest involvement in the attacks because they coincided with the arrival in Israel last week of leaders of four Arab states – Egypt, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Morocco – for a summit.
These Arab states – and others waiting in the wings – wish to make Israel the linchpin of a new shared regional security and intelligence pact designed to prevent threats to their rule, including a revival of the Arab Spring.
For IS supporters, the move is yet another humiliation, and proof of the illegitimacy of the region’s Arab autocracies.
These attacks were carried out by lone wolves – and in one case, a pair of lone wolves – who have become increasingly desperate, angry and vengeful after decades of Israel’s oppression of Palestinians, and the complicity and betrayal by western and Arab governments.
The attackers’ surge of rage coincided with one part of the agenda of IS. But in their case, the roots penetrate much deeper.
The Palestinian perpetrators from Israel did not need indoctrination by the foreign leadership of IS to carry out their attacks. They had plenty of homegrown reasons to want to strike out – no different from the “lone-wolf” Palestinian from the West Bank who carried out a third attack near Tel Aviv but had no ties to IS.
Decades of brutal military rule in the occupied territories and systematic discrimination and oppression inside Israel were the real causes.
One cannot overlook either the double whammy from Israel against the more devout section of Israel’s Palestinian minority.
First, the best organised and most politically astute religious party in Israel, the Northern Islamic Movement under Sheikh Raed Salah, was outlawed in 2015. Israeli critics, even within the security establishment, warned at the time that the move would drive some Islamic protest underground and encourage greater extremism.
And second, the rival Southern Islamic Movement, under Mansour Abbas, threw its hand in with Bennett last summer to oust Netanyahu from power. Abbas’s party became the first to join an Israeli government, in return for a few crumbs from the far right.
Both developments have left devout Muslims who oppose Israel’s occupation and the crushing of Palestinian rights with no serious, legitimate channel for protest. They have been disempowered and humiliated – ready conditions to provoke a fringe into staging violent attacks of the kind seen in the past few days.
There is a lesson here that Israel willfully ignores, just as the western states who serve as its patron do too.
If you treat populations with structural violence, if you strip them of rights, if you demean and humiliate them, and if you deny them a voice in their future, you cannot be surprised – even less maintain a self-righteousness – when some lash out with their own forms of violence against you.
The wrong, self-serving lesson Israel will learn – as it has for decades – is that the correct response must be greater violence, greater humiliation, and an intensified demand for submission. The oppression will continue, as will the resistance.
The West’s unlimited support for Israel, and the Arab autocracies that are now openly cosying up to Israel, has a cost. Dismissing it as simply the savagery of IS may offer reassurance. But it will not stop the pressure from building – or the explosion to come.
It is the large crime of multiple dimensions. Spousal abuse. Hundreds of millions of women trapped. Trapped not of their own doing, though every sort of flippant or fierce man, and some women, will turn blue on their room temperature IQ faces stating, drum roll:
how can a woman stay in that sort of relationship?
she could have left anytime
didn’t see the red flags before committing?
how can this go on for one, three, five, ten years . . . something is wrong with that woman
it takes TWO to tango . . .
women expect too much from men . . . yelling back and forth is not abuse
leave this up to the courts and cops . . . if they can’t charge a man with DV, then leave it alone
something is broken in this woman . . . she attracts that sort of relationship . . .
Oh, the stories go on and on. Even judges throughout this rot-gut land, blaming the victim, of course, in open court. Rape victims in their late teens, told they CAUSED the sexual assault by the way they dressed, where they went for drinks and for the drinks they drank.
Do the Gulag Google search — “judge blames girl for dress for rape”
Here ya go:
Judge accused of victim-blaming in comments on rape case…
Mar 10, 2017 — Campaigners say Lindsey Kushner QC’s sentencing remarks were ‘the kind of thing that deters women from reporting assaults’.
Here Are 9 Times Clothing Was Blamed for Sexual Assault – Mich
Apr 27, 2016 — A judge in 2006: “They made their intentions publicly known that they wanted to party.” · A police officer in 2011: “Women should avoid dressing …
Jury blames woman’s clothing in rape case – UPI …
Oct 5, 1989 — Broward County Circuit Judge Mark Speiser had the woman picked up by deputies after she failed to respond to subpoeanes for court appearances.
Manitoba judge criticized for saying victim’s clothing, attitude …
Feb 24, 2011 — A legal expert says a Manitoba judge’s comment during a rape sentencing that “sex was in the air” is a troubling legal throwback.
Peru judge throws out rape case as woman was wearing red …
Nov 4, 2020 — A Peruvian court has declared that a woman who wore red underwear to a party could not have been raped because the garment signalled she …
Judge Tosses Teen’s Sexual Assault Conviction, Drawing …
Jan 13, 2022 — Clinton’s conviction was “a clean and clear example of victim blaming.” By highlighting the girl’s clothing and chastising the hosts of the …
Canadian Judge Robin Camp to woman in rape case – CNN
Sep 13, 2016 — He blamed it on his “non-existent” knowledge of Canadian criminal law.
Rape victim ‘inviting,’ so no jail: Judge rules woman’s clothes …
It should be noted that the supposition that the judge is blaming the victim is … To say that a judge let a rapist off BECAUSE of the woman’s dress, …
Now, Google this — “domestic abuse blame the victim in USA”
The Psychology of Victim Blaming – The Atlantic
Oct 5, 2016 — After the Upright Citizens Brigade theater in New York banned a performer in the wake of several women accusing him of sexual assault and abuse, …
Why We Blame Victims for Domestic Violence
Aug 23, 2017 — At its core, says Elise Lopez, a researcher in sexual and domestic violence prevention and response at the University of Arizona, victim-blaming …
Rape Culture, Victim Blaming, And The Facts
What is Rape Culture? Rape Culture is an environment in which rape is prevalent and in which sexual violence is normalized and excused in the media and …
Victim blaming – Wikipedia
Secondary victimization of sexual and other assault victims — In efforts to discredit alleged sexual assault victims in court, a defense attorney may delve into an …
Helping Survivors Can Be as Simple as Changing the Way …Dec 9, 2020 — In relation to domestic violence, victim blaming places the responsibility for the abuse on the survivor instead of the abuser. Blaming domestic …
Victim Blaming: Why is it that some victims and survivors of violent crime get blamed for what has happened to them through no fault of their own? Crime victims are often …
4 Reasons Why Victims Blame Themselves For Domestic …Jul 20, 2020 — As an experienced Fort Lauderdale domestic violence attorney, Vanessa L. Prieto can help you take the steps needed to protect yourself.
Victim Blaming in Abuse and Relationships: In the arena of domestic violence, victim blaming is applied with a vengeance against survivors who stay with a primary aggressor beyond the first obviously …
Why does everyone blame the victim in domestic violence …
Abusers only abuse intimate partners behind closed doors. They are very charming and nice to the partner in front of others. Abusers are very manipulative and …
Gaslighting & Abuse – House Of Ruth:
Abuse may be physical, sexual, emotional, or financial. Learn the behaviors to be aware of. Domestic abuse comes in many forms. Understand emotional, verbal, physical & abuse signs.
Yes, there are a million graphics and reports and ways to frame this epidemic in the world:
But, when it comes to your door or your circle of life, you will deal with all manner of what happened and how to help a woman extract herself from the abuse. And, you will find that many communities do NOT have great domestic violence “resources,” and that shelters are few and far between. When a woman is single, has a big dog, and has no car, no bank account, no one in a new community where she and her spouse have ended up, the amount of emotional and psychic turmoil is magnified.
This one person just three days ago reached out via email to ask me for help. I barely knew her, having met her at a hardware store. And, also, I did briefly meet the woman and the construction guy at the house just up the way: amazing house, a dream, the ocean, and, well, I didn’t spend time with the woman and her husband, so the red flags or tremors of an abusive dude never hit me.
But, the email, then the phone call, then meeting the person away from the almost-completed-house, and then some plan of action. It turns out that the person is legally married, but she is working on a green card. She’s from the UK. She was in New Mexico, before the couple ended up here of all places, to build the dream home. They were working on a green card. They had flown out to NM, last Friday, and the dude, a massive alcoholic, started gulping down airline shots. A bender. And, then, the Albuquerque mother of this guy, well, she was beat down too, as a wife of this guy’s dad, who ended up flying bombers in the USA Air Force, and giving shots to the my friend’s husband and his younger brother when they were 9 and 7 respectively.
The Brit gets her Social Security card, but there are no photos of the married couple together. More than five years married, and he manipulated that. Five years now, and the house and land are in his name. One vehicle, that too in his name. He held all the money from a sale of a house from Santa Fe, which he took as cash up here. The green card is now precarious, an unknown, a probable “no.”
Now, the story really is of the woman, whose parents have heard the cry wolf story many times. Her friends, they too, although this woman, Vicky, has kept some friends in the dark about this guy’s consistent behavior. That’s typical — embarrassment, recrimination, fear, and shame.
We are talking about a 38-year-old woman. She speaks three languages. She had a restaurant in Spain. She’s traveled the world. But that fateful day in 2017, she tied the knot. And he has been a constant up and down freak show, emotionally abusive, and many times, physically abusive. She says she always thought she could fix him. This last time there was no hitting or punching. She has on her phone a video of him attempting to throw her out of the car with the dog. He says it all: “You own nothing. You are nothing without me signing over the Green Card paperwork. You are worthless and can’t do anything without me. I have all the cards. If you cross me, I’ll kill you.”
That, under the state of Oregon, is not an arrestable offense, and while it should be, don’t expect much in this rot-gut of a patriarchal killer society.
No vehicle, no savings, and thus, people like me had to fall into action, because, a, it takes a village/community to do something about this shit, and, b, the idea of a death or a beating on my watch is horrendous for a radical writer.
I found the place for her to stay, some 30 miles away, in the woods, with an amazing woman, aged 83, with her horses and dogs and chickens and trees and garden. The lady, Alice, told Vicky that she has a safe place for a few weeks. She also related how her second husband, a lawyer, fought for three years her attempt to divorce. There were two children involved, and this Alice’s original farm (as she calls it) was in this guy’s sights (he was a lawyer).
My sister is a social worker coordinator in Arizona. She came to the rescue since she also ran domestice violence shelters. She knows Arizona and New Mexico. She’s connected. She has helped this woman get some sort of stability. She’s talked to her, counseled her, and directed her to some resources once she hits NM.
This woman is now on the road, as the New Mexico mother-in-law is helping out with rental car and cash for gas. Flights to NM were prohibitive. Just for the big dog, $775 one way, and that’s without the costs of a final vaccination and the big kennel bitive. The rental car was a huge hassle since they do not take debit cards, and they want the owner of a credit card to be there, in person. The mother-in-law is in New Mexico, an RN in her sixties.
This mother-in-law is warning Vicky “to get away from my son forever.” This mother-in-law was abused by her sons’ father big time. The kids were beaten by the father. And, even after she divorced this fascist pilot, the guy’s second wife had enough of the raging and hitting and so she shot him square between the eyes. Later days for an abuser. A week later, that second wife turned the gun on herself.
“I have lost myself. I can’t believe this has gone on and on. I used to be independent, gutsy. Heck, I set up my own restaurant in Basque country. I did that for six years. That’s where I met him.”
Yes, this entire society — male, female, LGBTQA+, young, old — gets into victim blaming as a common reaction to any sort of violence or assault on women in a domestic relationship.
Victim-blaming attitudes marginalize the victim/survivor and make it harder to come forward and report the abuse. If the victim/survivor knows that you or society blames survivors for abuse, they will not feel safe or comfortable coming forward and talking to you.
Victim-blaming attitudes also reinforce the manipulative tactics that abusers use to control their partner; abusers tell survivors that it is their fault this is happening. Committing violence is always the choice of the person who is abusing. It is NOT the victim/survivor’s fault or responsibility to fix the violence that an abuser is committing against them. By engaging in victim-blaming attitudes, society allows abusive people to perpetrate relationship abuse or sexual assault while avoiding accountability for those actions.
Victim-blaming attitudes prevent society from acknowledging and changing toxic masculinity and rape culture.
In order to stop victim-blaming, it is helpful to understand why it occurs in the first place. One reason that people blame a victim/survivor is to distance themselves from an unpleasant occurrence. This gives a false sense that this could not happen to them. By labeling or accusing the victim/survivor, others can see the victim/survivor as different from themselves. People use the Just World theory, Invulnerability theory, and Assumptive World theory in an attempt to feel like they have control over situations where they do not have control. People reassure themselves by thinking, “Because I am not like the victim/survivor, because I do not do XYZ, this would never happen to me.” We need to help people understand that a survivor’s actions do not contribute to a perpetrator’s decision to commit relationship abuse and sexual violence. It is our responsibility as members of society to support survivors and hold abusers accountable. (source)
Again, we are not in any enlightened moment. It’s 2022, but story after story shows the courts, the cops, the citizens, the collective we blame victims. We blame women when they come forward to accuse the rich and famous. Just look at the women accusing Weinstein or Trump or Biden. This is how these guys and their male and female handlers work the system. Having a standing president, Clinton, coerce Monica for sex, well, how many have said — “She was 22 and knew perfectly well what she was doing.”
Think about all the feminists and apologists defending that Clinton. Imagine, as a school teacher, if I coerced a student in my college class to have oral sex with me for benefit of her grade or in Monica’s case, advancement. These millions of men are criminals, sure, but worse. I’ve been lucky to take a bat to the heads of several rapists, when I was a senior in High School, and a few times in my 20s. Not now, Cancel Me Joe McCarthy!
And then, all the affairs this guy had as governor. And his “fun” with the royals, legals, governmentals, rich creeps who went to Epstein’s pedophilia island. Imagine that, a society that lets this just pass. And, then the Genocidal Joe, and his lies and his accusers:
A NEW PIECE of evidence has emerged buttressing the credibility of Tara Reade’s claim that she told her mother about allegations of sexual harassment and assault related to her former boss, then-Sen. Joe Biden. Biden, through a spokesperson, has denied the allegations. Reade has claimed to various media outlets, including The Intercept, that she told her mother, a close friend, and her brother about both the harassment and, to varying degrees of detail, the assault at the time. Her brother, Collin Moulton, and her friend, who has asked to remain anonymous, both confirmed that they heard about the allegations from Reade at the time. Reade’s mother died in 2016, but both her brother and friend also confirmed Reade had told her mother, and that her mother, a longtime feminist and activist, urged her to go to the police.
In interviews with The Intercept, Reade also mentioned that her mother had made a phone call to “Larry King Live” on CNN, during which she made reference to her daughter’s experience on Capitol Hill. Reade told The Intercept that her mother called in asking for advice after Reade, then in her 20s, left Biden’s office. “I remember it being an anonymous call and her saying my daughter was sexually harassed and retaliated against and fired, where can she go for help? I was mortified,” Reade told me. (source)
I only make these asides because, a, the society is sick. The media are sick. The people behind powerful figures are sick. But, even the dirt-poor or the deplorables or the mid-level folk, if men, accused of date rape, acquaintence rape, assault on a wife, beating a spouse, they are entitled on many levels since toxic masculinity is a face, and that we are in a rape culture. Forget about the Matt Taibbi types, or any of them, questioning the accusers of any number of thousands of powerful and in-the-news folk. They think the #MeToo movement is fake, on all accords.
Remember, here on these pages and elsewhere, I have written about my clients as a social services dude: homeless veterans and homeless folk. All my clients who were female were RAPED by their own soldiers, in this country, and some out of this country. Nah, not a rape culture, right?
It turns out that Vicky’s husband was a big shot at the University of New Mexico. Big shot in the fraternity. Big shot lording over women. Doing the old Ted Bundy soft shoe, but deep down hating women. He had many female friends — he’s tall, well built, a charmer, and, an amazingly open misogynist. Hates his mother. Uses the word “cunt” all the time, and bitch. Is he a product of a father with toxic military masculinity? A product of a military father who killed “the enemy” and bragged about it? A product of a death society enamored of military and macho and might? Is her 35-year-old husband worthless as a man? Full of sociopathic tendancies? Broken at a young age? Destroyed by booze? Determined to be all he can be as a sexist and shitty pig because he has no role models other than violent, piggish, misanthropes? The pigs and military, two of the highest rates of domestic violence of all sub-groups of baboon homo sapiens males. He is a product of that! TV, movies, sports, and toxic rape culture trapped in the DNA of men,
So, this person, Vicky, is out of here. She will have to withdraw from the toxicity. She’ll have to rewire her brain. Right now, she’s 800 miles away from the guy, but she had the shakes this morning, sweating, sick to her stomach. It’s the weight off of her soul, and it feels, well, discombobulating. Serotonin, dopamine, all the hormones in the fight or flight discharge. Cortisol loads. It’s an ugly reality that getting out of a toxic violent relationship is like getting off booze, coke, heroin. Or pills.
The body does rewire under strain and pressure and living in hell. It does create holes in mind processing. The body reacts to the hormones, the adrenal gland, all of that, including the gut and entire systems that keep a person from failing over with a heart attack at age 38.
Here, one of thousands of offending “judges”:
After the judge in her Wisconsin divorce case ruled that her ex-husband — a man who had sought treatment for anger and alcohol issues — would get legal custody of and equal time with their four children, Julie Valadez vowed to fight back.
But in every key ruling that followed, the Waukesha County Circuit Court judge overseeing her case, Michael J. Aprahamian, found Valadez’s concerns about her ex-husband not credible and her actions unacceptable. Aprahamian took away her ability to co-parent her children. He held her in contempt four times. And after Aprahamian ordered her arrest, she braced herself for jail.
Valadez, whose accusations of domestic abuse had led to her husband’s arrest, ran through a string of attorneys and represented herself at times. Eventually she found a Milwaukee civil rights attorney to represent her, along with a public defender, and enlisted the help of a Washington, D.C., legal service for domestic violence survivors. (source)
Yes, the court system — For Domestic Violence Survivors, Courts Can Be Another Abuse. They are living hells. There is no ethics in the law, and the rule of law, it is stacked against, well, fill in the blank_______________________________! The Court System Is Stacked Against Survivors Of Sexual Violence!
The systems for Vicky are stacked against her. She’s been married to this felon (he has two DUI’s and an assault from his drunkenness) who has managed to not get any couple photos taken. She is at his whim. She is about to be in another state to work on counseling. DV services. Getting support for herself and her dog. A shelter? Can this punk track her down? She will need help with a divorce. She deserves half of whatever this house is worth — $350,000. He’s managed to beat her, and there is a hospital report of broken ribs and concussion with the words “assaulted by husband” on the report. That was 1.5 years ago. She never filed charges.
The healing process will take time. Funny thing, the lady who owns the rent-a-car outfit in Corvallis is a survivor, too. Ten years, no kids, and she said she hit the bottle when she got out of that hellhole. She now owns her own business.
And so there we go. It takes more than a village. It takes proactive and empathetic people to help lead a way or pathway out of people’s hell’s. Most people I know will not get involved, but their sick minds are putting those UkiNazi blue and yellow stripes up on their Facebook. They’ll give a dollar of their Big Mac order for guns for more UkiNazi’s in Ukraine, but they say — “Man, don’t get involved with her. Domestic Violence. If he finds out who’s helping her, man, he’ll come after you.”
That is the jelly consistency of most Americans’ spines. Except for the lady at the rent-a-car place. And my friend Alice in the mountains with her goats and dogs and fruit trees. She even gave Vicky a $100 for the road. This Vicky, mind you, is a new friend to both of us. No one I knew except for a 45-minute conversation in that hardware store parking lot a month ago.
Now, she is connected to me, to my friend, Alice, to my sister, to that car rental lady, to many many more folk. That’s how you help a person. It’s a team effort. And while the guy deserves a bat to the head, I am 65, with a spouse who is not into that sort of justice (she is, but not for the consequences of me going to jail). I have no problem with that sort of justice, but again, missiles and cluster bombs and napalm for UkiNazi’s, but not a finger lifted for a fellow human right in their community.
Note: Names, demographic and biographic stuff changed to protect the heroes and the victim. But the story is absolutely true crime, right from this writer’s horse’s mouth. I just got a text from her on the road. She’s in LA now, listening to Steve Miller, and the dog’s head is sticking out the window, and Vicky is moving on, south, a million mental miles away from a very bad relationship that would have ended in, well, a broken neck, or her death.
And, another final note: Epstein, FBI, CIA, pedophiles, all that sickness. Politicians are about power and lust. These are the elected officials, from Republican guy who was wrestling coach going after boys, to Clinton and Gates going after underage females. The media are complicit. Heads do not roll. Conviction upheld for Ghislaine Maxwell. Interview with Nick Bryant, publisher of the Epstein ‘Little Black Book’ and author of ‘The Franklin Scandal’.
I’m finishing up a “children’s book.” It’s longish. Kati the Coatimundi Finds Lorena. It’s about a precocious (actually, super smart) 12 year old, Lorena, who is in a wheelchair (paraplegic) who ends up finding out the family trip to Playa del Carmen back to San Antonio, Texas, brought with them a stowaway animal — a coati. Yep, the world of the 12 yeare old is full of reading, drawing, smarts. Yep, the girl and the animal can communicate with each other. Yep, lots of struggle with being “the other,” and, well, it’s a story that I hope even keeps grandma on the edge of her seat, or at least wanting to read more and more. She is a mestizo, too. We’ll see how that goes with the woke folk. I think I have a former veterinarian who is retired and now is working on illustrations, art. We shall see where this project heads.
Under this veil of creativity, of course, it’s difficult to just meld into pure art when the world around me is very very pregnant with stupidity, injustice, despotism, and Collective Stockholm Syndrome. Being in Oregon, being in a small rural area, being in the Pacific Northwest, being in USA, now that also bogs down spirits.
It’s really about how stupid and how inane and how blatantly violent this so-called Western Civilization has become. The duh factor never plays in the game, because (a) the digital warriors writing stuff like this very blog are not engaged with centers of power, influence or coalescing. Then (b) so many people are in their minds powerful because with the touch of a keyboard, they can mount an offensive on or against facts . . . or deeply regarded and thought out opinions. So, then (c) everyone has a right to their opinion . . . . that is how the American mind moves through the commercial dungeons their marketing and financial overlords end up putting them.
No pitchforks? How in anybody’s room temperature IQ does this make any sense? Demands for daily procurement of weapons for imbalanced, losing, and Nazified Ukraine?
It is about the food, stupid, okay, Carville?
So, before we move on, this is a communique from the G7 summit of the world’s biggest economies. And, no, EU and USA and Canada, not prepared for the Russian offensive’s affect on global food security. Alas, March 24, the G7 leaders agreed to use “all instruments and funding mechanisms” and involve the “relevant international institutions” to address food security, including support for the “continued Ukrainian production efforts.”
Ukraine has told the US that it urgently needs to be supplied with 500 Javelin anti-tank missiles and 500 Stinger air defense missiles per day, CNN reported on Thursday, citing a document presented to US lawmakers.
Western countries have been sending weapons and military gear to Kiev but President Volodymyr Zelensky says it is not enough to fend off the Russian attack that was launched a month ago.
CNN quoted sources as saying that Ukraine is now asking for “hundreds more” missiles than in previous requests sent to lawmakers. Addressing the leaders of NATO member states via video link on Thursday, Zelensky said he had not received a “clear answer” to the request of “one percent of all your tanks.” (source)
And, again, this is not blasphemy? Imagine, this “leader” and those “leaders,” smiling away during what is the 30 seconds to midnight doomsday clock. Smiling while Ukraine kills humanitarian refugees, while the biolabs sputtering on in deep freeze (we hope), and while the food prices are rising. Gas cards in California, and food coupons in France?
In a normal world, a million pundits would be all over this March 24 group/grope photo. Smiles, while we the people have to watch billions go to ZioLensky and trillions more shunted to these world leaders’ overlords?
As I alluded to in the title — the mighty warring UK, with the highrises in London, with those jet-setters and those Rothschild-loving royal rummies, it has food banks set up for the struggling, working class, and, alas, the gas is so pricey that people can’t boil spuds! Bring back the coal stoves!
These are leaders? The elites? The best of the best?
In an interview with the BBC Radio 4 Today program on Wednesday, Richard Walker said the “cost of living crisis is the single most important domestic issue we are facing as a country.” He cited reports from some food banks that users are “declining products such as potatoes and other root veg because they can’t afford to boil them.” Walker suggested that the UK government could implement measures to take the heat off retailers. He urged that the energy price cap on households could be extended to businesses, which he said would translate into some £100m in savings on consumers. He also called on authorities to postpone the introduction of the planned increase in national insurance, as well as some new environmental taxes. (source)
The operative words are “crumbling,” and, then, “malfescence,” and then, “hubris,” and then, “bilking.”
I just heard some inside stuff from someone working for a high tech company. I can’t get into too much about that, but here, these “engineers” in electronics or in data storage systems, they are, again, the height of Eicchmanns, but with the added twist of me-myself-and-I. Their expectations are $180,000 a year, with six weeks paid vacation, stocks, and, well, the eight-hour day.
I don’t think the average blog reader gets this — we are not talking about celebrities, or the executive team for Amazon or Dell or Raytheon. Yep, those bastards pull in millions a year, like those celebrities, the pro athletes and the thespians of note, or musicians. These are people who are demanding those entry pay rates who have no empathy for the world around them. Sure, they believe they have kids to feed, and they might rah-rah the Ukraine madness (that, of course, means, more diodes, batteries, computer chips, communication systems, et al for the monsters of war), but they laugh at the idea of real people with real poverty issues getting a cheque from Uncle Sam.
These are the everyday folk. I harken to the Scheer Report, tied to this fellow: It’s almost surreal and schizophrenic to valorize this fellow. Here, his bio brief, Ted Postol, a physicist and nuclear weapons specialist as well as MIT professor emeritus, joins Robert Scheer on this week’s edition of “Scheer Intelligence” to explain just how deadly the current brinkmanship between the U.S. and Russia really is. Having taught at Stanford University and Princeton prior to his time at MIT, Postol was also a science and policy adviser to the chief of naval operations and an analyst at the Office of Technology Assessment. His nuclear weapons expertise led him to critique the U.S. government’s claims about missile defenses, for which he won the Garwin Prize from the Federation of American Scientists in 2016. (source)
I’ll go with Mr. Fish, as his illustration, even though it has words, speaks volumes —
It all begs the question, so, now this weapons of war fellow, this US Navy advisor, physcist, he is now having his coming to Allah-Jesus-Moses moment? He gets it so wrong, and, one slice of the Ray-gun play, well, he also misses the point that people brought up in the warring world, and those with elite college backgrounds, or military and elite college backgrounds, and those in think tanks, or on the government deep or shallow state payroll, those in the diplomatic corps, those in the Fortune 5000 companies, the lot of them, and, of course, the genuflect to the multimillionaires and billionaires, they are, quite frankly, in most cases, sociopaths.
But, here, a quote from his interview with Robert Scheer:
And unfortunately, most of what people believe—even people who are quite well educated—is just unchecked. You know, only if you’re a real expert—and these people were not, in spite of the fact they viewed themselves that way—do you understand something about the reality of what these weapons are about. And so basically, to use a term that gets overused a lot, I think the deep state in both Russia and the United States—more the United States than Russia, at least as far as I can see—the deep state in the United States mostly, basically undermined the ideas and objectives of Ronald Reagan. And of course Gorbachev was facing a similar problem in Russia.
So there’s these giant institutions inside both countries. They’re filled with people who, at one level, honestly believe these bad ideas, or think they are right; and because they think they are right, and they convince themselves that it’s in the best interest of the country, what’s really going on, it’s in their best interest as professionals but they mix up their best interest with the interest of the country. They, these people take steps to blunt the directives of the president, and basically the system just moves on without any real modification, independent of this remarkable and actually extraordinarily insightful judgment of these two men. (source)
We know Reagan’s pedigree, and we know the millions who have suffered and died under his watch. And his best and brightest in his crew, oh, they are still around. Imagine, that, Trump 2024. Will another war criminal and his cadre of criminals rise again to national prominence. He will be seeking counsel:
Then, alas, the flags at the post office, half mast, yet again and again and again — Today, that other war criminal:
Go to minute 59:00 here at the Grayzone, and watch this woman (Albright) call Serbs disgusting. Oh well, flags are flapping once again for another war criminal!
Sure, watch the entire two hours and forty-five minutes, and then try and wrap your heads around 1,000 missiles a day on the road to Ukraine, and no-boiling spuds in the UK. And it goes without saying, that any narrative, any deep study of, any recalled history of this entire bullshit affair in the minds of most Yankees and Rebels, they — Pepe Escobar, Scott Ritter, Abby Martin, et al — are the fringe. Get to this one from Escobar, today:
A quick neo-Nazi recap
By now only the brain dead across NATOstan – and there are hordes – are not aware of Maidan in 2014. Yet few know that it was then Ukrainian Minister of Interior Arsen Avakov, a former governor of Kharkov, who gave the green light for a 12,000 paramilitary outfit to materialize out of Sect 82 soccer hooligans who supported Dynamo Kiev. That was the birth of the Azov batallion, in May 2014, led by Andriy Biletsky, a.k.a. the White Fuhrer, and former leader of the neo-nazi gang Patriots of Ukraine.
Together with NATO stay-behind agent Dmitro Yarosh, Biletsky founded Pravy Sektor, financed by Ukrainian mafia godfather and Jewish billionaire Ihor Kolomoysky (later the benefactor of the meta-conversion of Zelensky from mediocre comedian to mediocre President.)
Pravy Sektor happened to be rabidly anti-EU – tell that to Ursula von der Lugen – and politically obsessed with linking Central Europe and the Baltics in a new, tawdry Intermarium. Crucially, Pravy Sektor and other nazi gangs were duly trained by NATO instructors.
Biletsky and Yarosh are of course disciples of notorious WWII-era Nazi collaborator Stepan Bandera, for whom pure Ukrainians are proto-Germanic or Scandinavian, and Slavs are untermenschen.
Azov ended up absorbing nearly all neo-Nazi groups in Ukraine and were dispatched to fight against Donbass – with their acolytes making more money than regular soldiers. Biletsky and another neo-Nazi leader, Oleh Petrenko, were elected to the Rada. The White Führer stood on his own. Petrenko decided to support then President Poroshenko. Soon the Azov battalion was incorporated as the Azov Regiment to the Ukrainian National Guard.
They went on a foreign mercenary recruiting drive – with people coming from Western Europe, Scandinavia and even South America.
That was strictly forbidden by the Minsk Agreements guaranteed by France and Germany (and now de facto defunct). Azov set up training camps for teenagers and soon reached 10,000 members. Erik “Blackwater” Prince, in 2020, struck a deal with the Ukrainian military that would enable his renamed outfit, Academi, to supervise Azov.
It was none other than sinister Maidan cookie distributor Vicky “F**k the EU” Nuland who suggested to Zelensky – both of them, by the way, Ukrainian Jews – to appoint avowed Nazi Yarosh as an adviser to the Commander-in-Chief of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, Gen Valerii Zaluzhnyi. The target: organize a blitzkrieg on Donbass and Crimea – the same blitzkrieg that SVR, Russian foreign intel, concluded would be launched on February 22, thus propelling the launch of Operation Z. (Source: “Make Nazism Great Again — The supreme target is regime change in Russia, Ukraine is just a pawn in the game – or worse, mere cannon fodder.”)
In the minds of wimpy Trump and wimpy Biden, or in those minds of all those in the camp of Harris-Jill Biden disharmony, these white UkiNazi hombres above are “our tough hombres.” Send the ZioLensky bombs, bioweapons, bucks, big boys. Because America the Ungreat will be shaking up the world, big time.
So, I slither back to the writing, finishing up my story about a girl, a coati, Mexico, what it means to be disabled, and what it means to be an illegal animal stuck in America, Texas, of all places, where shoot to kill vermin orders are a daily morning conversation with the oatmeal and white toast and jam.
If only the world could be run by storytellers, dancers, art makers, dramatists, musicians everywhere. Here, a great little thing from Lila Downs — All about culture, art, dance, language, food, color. Forget the physicists, man. And the electrical and dam engineers.
If you do not understand Spanish, then, maybe hit the YouTube “settings” and get the English subtitles.. In either case, magnificent, purely magnificent!
I’m rushing this since it is officially, November 11, the dreaded day of dishonor we call Veterans Day. Parades, ceremonies, and a fake day off—Veterans Day, observed on November 11 each year, is one of the country’s 12 Congressionally designated federal holidays. Make now bones about it — this holiday is distinct from Memorial Day: more nonsense with roots from a Civil War-era tradition of decorating the graves of deceased soldiers.
Veterans Day didn’t always celebrate all military veterans. Once tagged as Armistice Day, November 11 has roots in one of the most perverted and destructive rich man’s conflicts in history.
Go back to 1918, when a world of direct and collateral damaged souls wanted an end of what was commonly called the “Great War.” World War I had slashed and burned European landscapes, but it was the beginning of that use of deadly new scientifically-approved technology — poison gas — which got things going from thereon out, war-wise. Ecocide, genocide, and entire industries on exploding things and projectiles from space. More than 30 nations were dragged into this ugly great war of planes, tanks, bombs hitting all fronts with trenches and clouds of chlorine gas against galloping horse Cavalries. Revolutions had upended the governments of many of the combatant countries, and an influenza pandemic was sweeping the world.
On November 11, 1918 at 11:00 a.m. Paris time, an armistice came into effect.
World War I was over, but wars implanted in other countries were just beginning. 10 million men were killed in action, and another 20 million were wounded worldwide. The U.S. threw into the conflict in 1917, but it alone had lost over 116,000 lives and seen about 320,000 other casualties. These are just the ledger counts, because capitalists do not count the epigenetic trauma, the death by slow PTSD, the collective horror, guilt, shame and disease of war’s multiple fronts, victims and tragedies.
The bell tolled and silence rang at 11 a.m. Armistice day was nationwide. Multiple governors declared legal holidays. All those rah-rah veterans’ associations and groups made plans to commemorate the occasion with ceremonies, religious ceremonies, and fundraising for the American Red Cross. On November 11, 1919, the New York Times noted that people around the world would hold moments of silence at 11:00 a.m.
No great speeches on peace, no great conferences on structural violence, or why blockades are deadly, or how the financial felons of war keep on taking, or what sort of torture would be befitting of the war profiteers, or no great treatises on Wall Street’s hand in things. No War is a Racket intimations, that is, in the public at large, until, well, until 1935!
I spent 33 years and four months in active military service and during that period I spent most of my time as a high class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism. I helped make Mexico and especially Tampico safe for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefit of Wall Street. I helped purify Nicaragua for the International Banking House of Brown Brothers in 1902-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for the American sugar interests in 1916. I helped make Honduras right for the American fruit companies in 1903. In China in 1927 I helped see to it that Standard Oil went on its way unmolested. Looking back on it, I might have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I operated on three continents.
I’m named after a grandfather, Paul Haeder, who was a lieutenant in the German Navy during World War. He was one of seven brothers, and his life in Dortmund changed when he was recruited at age 17 into the Navy, as he lived on a German tall ship, where he would spend a year learning the trade of militarism, German style. Many ports that ship went to, and alas he ended up in a tri-plane, fighting the British and French. They carried hunting rifles with them to shoot at the pilots and engines. They carried round rocks to drop on the cloth wings. They had grenades to toss on trucks and soldiers below. There was no synchronized propellers for front mounted machine guns, hence the hunting rifles.
I did grow up on the Azores (USAF father) and then in France (same father, but officer, US Army). I spent time with aunts and uncles and cousins in Scotland, England and Germany. For a child — I was precocious and always around smart people who had at least THAT history under their belts. I was in the middle of old wise adults, war survivors, and young adults with education under their belts. It was an international upbringing. I was anti-military even though I was forced to be a military brat. My father was shot twice in Vietnam, and he was wounded in Korea as a 19 year old. He was a socialist, but he was also so tied to the military — cryptography — that I blasted his philosophy out of my life. He was always supportive of my education, and he threw in bucks when I needed things to survive in college. He was not a hard-ass like myself, and alas, I did the ROTC thing with my long hair while working as a journalist for the college daily rag. I wanted to learn the insights of war makers to be a revolutionary. Look where that got me, now age 64, aging out of all relevance in this by hook or by crook country.
So, that grandfather’s brothers had all emigrated to the US, Iowa and South Dakota, and Minnesota. My grandfather was in post-WWI German, trying to survive, trying his hand at anything, including Pinkerton guard on the trains (bread trains they called them) in order to shoot to kill Germans who were starving. He didn’t last long doing that, nor did he last long in the coal mines.
Ironically, he was on the Rostock, in the Battle of Jutland.
It was a huge battle off Denmark. My grandfather was on the ship being transported to another front to fly. The ship was hit, he broke his jaw, and he held up a seaman with a broken arm and shoulder and watched that war theater between the Germans and British.
The point is that war is more than just messy. You can read about the Rostock and Jutland in Wikipedia. Whoever wrote the entry loves naval war.
Rostock also participated in the Battle of Jutland, on 31 May 1916. She served as the leader of the torpedo boat flotillas, flying the flag of Kommodore Andreas Michelsen. The flotilla was tasked with screening for the battle squadrons of the High Seas Fleet. As the German fleet reached the engagement between the British and German battlecruiser squadrons at 17:30, a pair of destroyers, HMS Nestor and Nicator attempted to attack the German battle line. Rostock and a number of the battleships engaged the destroyers, which were both disabled by the heavy German fire. The battleships destroyed Nestor and Nicator and their crews were picked up by German torpedo boats.
At 19:32, Rostock and several torpedo boats crossed through the German line and began to lay a smoke screen to cover the withdrawal of the German fleet. Some twenty minutes later, Michelsen detached several torpedo boats to assist the badly damaged battlecruiser Lützow. By the time the German fleet had assumed its night cruising formation, Rostock fell in with the light cruisers of IV Scouting Group on the port side of the fleet. Shortly before midnight, Rostock and IV Scouting Group came into contact with the 2nd Light Cruiser Squadron. Shortly after midnight, the British 4th Destroyer Flotilla attacked the German line, where Rostock was positioned. She joined the cannonade directed against the destroyers as they pressed home their attack. The destroyers launched several torpedoes at the Germans, forcing Rostock and the other cruisers to turn away to avoid them; this pointed the ships directly at the battleships in I Battle Squadron. Rostock successfully passed through the formation, but the cruiser Elbing was rammed by one of the battleships and disabled.
In the chaos of the night engagement, Rostock’s search lights illuminated the destroyer Broke. Gunfire from Rostock and the battleships Westfalen and Rheinland smothered the British destroyer; although heavily damaged, she managed to limp back to port. The ship was attacked by the destroyers Ambuscade and Contest; the two ships each fired a single torpedo at high-speed settings at a range of about 1,000 yd (910 m). One torpedo struck Rostock at 1:30, though it is unknown which destroyer launched it. Rostock was also hit by three 4 in (100 mm) shells, probably from the destroyer Broke. The disabled Rostock called the destroyer S54 to join her; S54 took Rostock in tow, at times making up to 10 kn (19 km/h; 12 mph). The pair was subsequently joined by the destroyers V71 and V73, which had been detached from the flotilla to escort Rostock back to port.
At around 03:55 on 1 June, the four German ships encountered the British cruiser Dublin. The three destroyers went alongside the crippled cruiser and evacuated her crew, while flashing the first two letters of the British signal challenge. Smoke screens were laid to obscure the identity of the German warships. After about ten minutes, S54 departed with Rostock’s crew aboard, while V71 and V73 remained. Scuttling charges had been set in the cruiser, but to ensure Rostock sank faster, the two destroyers fired a total of three torpedoes into the ship. Rostock sank bow-first at approximately 04:25, after which V71 and V73 made for Horns Reef at high speed. Of Rostock’s crew, 14 men were killed and 6 were wounded during the battle. In the course of the battle, Rostock fired some 500 rounds of 10.5 cm ammunition, more than any other German ship. A second Rostock, of the Cöln class, was launched in April 1918, but was not completed before the end of the war.
So, back in the USA, the Haeders — all those brothers and their families — believed that the eldest brother, Paul, had perished in the Battle of Jutland. They even held a memorial for him in Waterloo, Iowa. News back then did not travel fast.
This legacy of war is in a box. Iron Cross and other German awards. The two purple hearts and one slug dug out of my old man’s chest when his helicopter was shot down in Vietnam. Bronze star, all sorts of medals, and the tri-folded American Flag given to his wife (divorced, my mom) at his graveside service at Fort Huachuca where his ashes are in a cemetery near where I used to go javelina hunting when I was still a meat eater (age 17).
Ironically, everything in my life has been anti-war, anti-imperialism, and yet, I was a college teacher in Texas, New Mexico and Washington, working on military bases teaching college composition and literature. Before that, I was a reporter for newspaper in Southern Arizona, with one of my many beats being the US military, Fort Huachuca and the aerostat balloons in the first part of militarizing the border around drugs and immigrants.
I even taught college courses at Biggs Field, Texas, at the Sergeants Major Academy. My entire life has been pulling the scales off the eyes of my students, whose vision is infused with propaganda and false history of this country, from sea to shining sea. Many of my students agreed with Butler’s short book on the racket of war. I did get some off-the-record detailed accounts of many of those soldiers’ dealings in Vietnam, the Middle East, Central America, Africa.
What this country is all about is this smoke and mirrors gambit, facades, a disjointed fake right-left divide. What this country does around the military is more than criminal. Right from the playbook of the Roman Empire. But on steroids. So much more entangled in everything, now that the world runs on finance, trillions held in BlackRock and Blackstone and 100 banks. A world where media — books, history texts, TV, film, radio, Internet — are controlled by a dozen outfits. Who owns the world are those who need public and private armies to keep us, the 80 percent, in line. It’s keeping us in line with chaos of information, with disjointed fears, with people at each other’s throats.
That’s the same task faced by every agency of the government which has a connection to foreign policy. The same task faced by the mainstream media. They want to make it look good. They never use the word imperialism. They never say this is a big lie or it’s totally immoral, so they’re all on the same side. They all have to find ways of putting it in the best light. That’s the joint task of all these institutions. It’s as bad as World War I. These young people, they have little idea of the extreme acts of terrorism carried out by our Al Qaeda types. I’m sure the average American shares this view that suicide bombings are inhuman, but one can raise the same questions about the average American soldier. What’s been done to the people of Iraq and Afghanistan is as horrible as anything done by Al Qaeda. So, we don’t have to look for Islamic brainwashing, we have American brainwashing.
We know about Blum’s writing tied to the number of interventions (wars, killings) the US had engaged in from 1945 to 1999, when Blum’s book concludes: Killing Hope: US Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II. Portions of the book can be read at: this site:
The engine of American foreign policy has been fueled not by a devotion to any kind of morality, but rather by the necessity to serve other imperatives, which can be summarized as follows:
* making the world safe for American corporations;
* enhancing the financial statements of defense contractors at home who have contributed generously to members of congress;
* preventing the rise of any society that might serve as a successful example of an alternative to the capitalist model;
* extending political and economic hegemony over as wide an area as possible, as befits a “great power.”
This in the name of fighting a supposed moral crusade against what cold warriors convinced themselves, and the American people, was the existence of an evil International Communist Conspiracy, which in fact never existed, evil or not.
The United States carried out extremely serious interventions into more than 70 nations in this period.
That war debt for Germany was so crushing it took 92 years after the defeat in WWI to pay off. That is the racket of the slimy ones — the bankers, the psychologists, the propagandists, the marketers, the offence weaponry corporations, the entire system propped up by royalty of all brands, as well as the elite, the money hoarders, the purveyors of death who use soldiers, civilians, crops, rivers, hospitals, schools, industries as weapons, as the casualties of war. Don’t forget about the inept media (but really stealth and capable tools for oligarchs and militarists). The Military Industrial Complex is so much more than rivets, TNT, missile parts, bombers, napalm.
Again, back to Rusty Nelson, who was asked to speak at a commencement, and he was part of the Peace and Justice Action League of Spokane, and he worked hard at anti-war activism, and activism tied to environmental and educational justice. He said a few words in that address which got him promptly scolded by the superintendent and banned from ever stepping foot on a Spokane campus (K12) again.
This issue led to an insurrection in Seattle last spring. Parents at Garfield High School didn’t want recruiters targeting kids just because they are low-income or black, and the parent-teacher-student association voted to keep recruiters out.
“One piece of research I did was to find out how many times recruiters go to Lakeside, which is our (Seattle School District’s) prep school,” says Amy Hagopian, president of the Garfield PTSA. “And recruiters don’t go there. The guy I talked to, in 10 years as a career counselor, said he’s never seen Lakeside kids join the regular military. They go to the academies, like West Point. They don’t just join the Marines.”
There appears to be a similar dynamic in Spokane. Military recruiters visit Lewis and Clark High School as little as once a year, even though they are allowed in the building as many as four times a year.
At Rogers High, the recruiters come once a month. Rogers is also the only Spokane high school with an ROTC program.
There isn’t the same sense of outrage, however, that the district isn’t sticking up for more options for the kids at Rogers.
“The Peace and Justice Action League has a campaign to educate high school students about the pitfalls of recruiting. But it hasn’t taken off. We are not seeing the interest we expected from students or parents,” says Rusty Nelson of PJALS.
“Each school is different. Some schools say come anytime you want. Others say come once a quarter,” says Capt. John Richardson, an Army recruiter in Spokane.
In Spokane, a more conservative and more low-income city than Seattle, military careers have long been an honorable choice for high school grads. The military has seen little falloff in enlistments here, Richardson says: “Our enlistments have not changed over historic numbers.”
The continuing war in Iraq and the stepped-up search for recruits “has not been a concern for the school district,” says Emmett Arndt, director of teaching and learning for Spokane Public Schools. “We perceive that a military career is a viable and high-interest career for students.”
But parents and groups such as Spokane’s Peace and Justice Action League say the pressure to get recruits has increased in recent years, and students need to be shielded from high-pressure sales.
The nation’s 7,500 recruiters had a “stand-down” day on May 20 for retraining and refocus in the wake of embarrassing, and widely publicized, ethical lapses. There were no such lapses in the Spokane office, Richardson says.
Rusty and Nancy Nelson retired from the PJALS in 2009. Both people I considered friends during my 10 year stint in Spokane. Things in the MIC and the embedded encircling business and finance realm are so so much worse in 2021. An explosion of perversity and crime in the entire offence weapon game, and the tethered industries of oppression. All those collateral casualties are worth it not just in the mind of Albright, but in the minds of all those bankers and hedge fund and politicians, et al. All of them, every single one of them. who supports and defends this country.
This image is what the robber barons and the money changers and the depopulation gurus want in every country: “During a period of hyperinflation in 1920s Germany, 100,000 marks was the equivalent one U.S. dollar.”
This story of war, this history of lies, this ramping up of rah-rah rot, oh, I could go on and on, but I am on my own deadlines, hoping Dissident Voice runs this through today on the United States of Armaments’ holy day, Veterans Day, a mental place where there are no peace colleges, no peace studies (mandatory) in K12. Yes, without that version of humanity — peace, ending cold and hot wars, stopping the deadly sanctions and blockades and financial dirty dealings — our youth are handcuffed by lie after lie after lie.
Armistice — “an agreement made by opposing sides in a war to stop fighting for a certain time; a truce.”
Oh, do the Google gulag thing, and try and find any robust, true, four year or graduate program on “peace studies.” You know, antiwar studies, teaching teachers or thinkers to pursue the antiwar ethos, the entire complicated message of getting war out of everything. There is no antiwar movement, and you will not find Peace Colleges, but you will find War Colleges, and you will find ROTC units on Jesuit campuses. Crocodile tears for mercenaries, and SEAL teams with knives and C4 explosives. This is our guy, our book seller, our celebrity, our pardoned fellow, our hero. Chief Petty Office Gallagher, US Navy:
Not in the brig for long, for murdering prisoners — see him wrist-cuffed?
And, it wouldn’t be Disneyland, La-La Land, America, without a murderer blessed by a wannabe murderer, Trump:
President and CEO, Northrop Grumman
Effective Jan. 1, 2019
President and CEO, Lockheed Martin
Effective Jan. 1, 2013
Chairman and CEO, General Dynamics
Effective January 2013
President and CEO, Boeing Defense, Space & Security
Effective February 2016
Undersecretary of defense for acquisition and sustainment
Effective August 2017
Secretary of the Air Force
Effective May 16, 2017
Administrator, National Nuclear Security Administration
Effective Feb. 22, 2018
Undersecretary of state for arms control and international security
Effective June 19, 2018
Amen! May they all go the way of the Dodo, and I mean that figuratively. Because we know what harsh minds they have, what machinations are brewing in their violent brains, and how their violent tendencies are washed away with Georgetown and Harvard university MBA’s/JD’s and inside their rich lives and with their jet-setting ways, all part of the War is a Racket formula, updated AI and Drone and Pathogens and Satellite style, 2021.
Turned into this, thank goodness —
Ahh, Butler, stopping a coup against Roosevelt, against the elected (sic) president, and, of course, a Bush in Hand is involved:
In 1934, a colossal claim reached the American news media: There had been a plot to overthrow President Franklin D. Roosevelt, in favor of a fascist government. Supposedly in the works since 1933, the claims of the conspiracy came from a very conspicuous and reliable source: Major General Smedley Butler, one of the most decorated war heroes of his time. Even more unbelievable were his claims of who was involved in the plot – respected names like Robert Sterling Clark, Grayson M.P. Murphy, and Prescott Bush. While news media at the time mocked Butler’s story, recently discovered archives have revealed the truth behind Major General Butler’s claims. (light reading source)
The vast economic impact of the post-9/11 wars in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Syria, and elsewhere is poorly understood by the U.S. public and policymakers. This paper estimates the budgetary costs of war, including past expenditures and future obligations to care for veterans of these wars.
The number of people killed directly in the violence of the wars in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Syria, Yemen and elsewhere are approximated here. Several times as many civilians have died due to the reverberating effects of these wars. The methods of accounting are described in this paper.
From 2018 to 2020, the U.S. government undertook what it labeled “counterterrorism” activities in at least 85 countries, in an outgrowth of President George W. Bush’s “Global War on Terror.” This map displays air/drone strikes, on-the-ground combat, “Section 127e” programs, military exercises, and operations to train and/or assist foreign forces.
Zakaria Zubeidi is one of six Palestinian prisoners who, on September 6, tunneled their way out of Gilboa, a notorious, high-security Israeli prison. Zubeidi was recaptured a few days later. The large bruises on Zubeidi’s face told a harrowing story, that of a daring escape and of a violent arrest. However, the story does not begin, nor end, there.
Twenty years ago, following what has been etched in the collective Palestinian memory as the ‘Jenin Massacre’, I was introduced to the Zubeidi family in the Jenin refugee camp, which was almost entirely erased by the Israeli army during and following the Jenin battle.
Despite my repeated attempts, the Israeli army prevented me from reaching Jenin, which was kept under total Israeli military siege for months following the most violent episode of the entirety of the Second Palestinian Uprising (2000-2005).
I could not speak to Zakaria directly. Unlike his brother, Taha, Zakaria survived the massacre and subsequently rose in the ranks of Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, the armed wing of the Fatah movement, to become its leader, thus topping the list of Israel’s most wanted Palestinians.
Most of our communication was with his sister, Kauthar, who told us in detail about the events that preceded the fateful military siege of April. Kauthar was only 20 years old at the time. Despite her grief, she spoke proudly about her mother, who was killed by an Israeli sniper only weeks before the invasion of the camp and about her brother, Taha, the leader of the Al-Quds Brigades, the armed wing of the Islamic Jihad in Jenin at the time; and of Zakaria, who was now on a mission to avenge his mother, brother, best friends and neighbors.
“Taha was killed by a sniper. After he was killed, they fired shells at him, which completely burned his body. This was in the Damaj neighborhood,” Kauthar told us, adding, “The Shebab gathered what remained of him and put him in a house. Since that day, the house has been known as ‘The Home of the Hero’.”
Kauthar also told me about her mother, Samira, 51, “who spent her life going from one prison to another” to visit her husband and her sons. Samira was loved and respected by all the fighters in the camp. Her children were the heroes that all the youngsters attempted to emulate. Her death was particularly shocking.
“She was hit with two bullets in the heart,” Kauthar said. “Once she turned around, she was hit in the back. Blood poured out of her nose and mouth. I did not know what else to do but to scream.”
Zakaria immediately went underground. The young fighter was feeling aggrieved at what had befallen his beloved Jenin, family, mother and brother – the latter’s wedding was scheduled one week from the day he was killed. He was also feeling betrayed by his Fatah ‘brothers’ who continued to openly collaborate with Israel, despite the mounting tragedies in the occupied West Bank, and by the Israeli left that abandoned the Zubeidi family despite promises of solidarity and camaraderie.
“Every week, 20-30 Israelis would come there to do theatre,” Zakaria said in an interview with The Time magazine, with reference to the ‘Arna’s House’ theater, which involved Zakaria and other Jenin youngsters, and was established by Arna Mer-Khamis, an Israeli woman who was married to a Palestinian. “We opened our home and you demolished it … We fed them. And, afterwards, not one of them picked up the phone. That is when we saw the real face of the left in Israel.”
Of the five children who participated in the ‘Arna’s House’ theatre, only Zakaria survived. The rest had joined various armed groups to fight the Israeli occupation and were all killed.
Zakaria was born in 1976 under Israeli occupation, therefore never experienced life as a free man. At 13, he was shot by Israeli soldiers for throwing stones. At 14, he was arrested for the first time. At 17, he joined the Palestinian Authority security forces, believing, like many Palestinians at the time, that the PA’s ‘army’ was established to protect Palestinians and to secure their freedom. Disillusioned, he left the PA less than a year later.
Zakaria only committed to armed struggle in 2001, as a way of achieving freedom for his people, months after the start of the Second Intifada. One of his childhood friends was one of the first to be killed by Israeli soldiers. In 2002, Zakaria joined the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, around the time that his mother, Samira, and his brother, Taha, were killed.
2002, in particular, was a decisive year for the Fatah movement, which was practically, but unofficially, divided into two groups: one that believed that armed struggle should remain a strategy for liberation, and another that advocated political dialogue and a peace process. Many members of the first group were killed, arrested or marginalized, including Fatah’s popular leader, Marwan Barghouti, who was arrested in April 2002. Members of the second group grew rich and corrupt. Their ‘peace process’ failed to deliver the coveted freedom and they refused to consider other strategies, fearing the loss of their privileges.
Zakaria, like thousands of Fatah members and fighters, was caught up in this ongoing dilemma, wanting to carry on with the struggle as if PA President Mahmoud Abbas’ leadership was ready to risk it all for the sake of Palestine, while remaining committed to the Fatah party, hoping that, perhaps, someday the movement would reclaim the mantle of Palestinian resistance.
The trajectory of Zakaria’s life, so far, is a testament to this confusion. He was not only imprisoned by the Israelis, but also by the PA. Sometimes, he spoke highly of Abbas only to, later, disown all the treachery of the Palestinian leadership. He surrendered his weapon several times, only to retrieve it with the same determination as before.
Though Zakaria is now back in prison, his story remains unfinished. Scores of young fighters are now roaming the streets of the Jenin refugee camp, vowing to carry on with armed struggle. Namely, Zakaria Zubeidi is not just a single person but a whole generation of Palestinians in the West Bank who are caught up in an impossible dilemma, having to choose between a painful, but real, struggle for freedom and political compromises, which, in Zakaria’s own words, “have achieved nothing”.
You get a story on the supposed Havana Syndrome, and then you also get the concept of mass psychogenic illness (you know, it’s all in your head, buster, those heart palpitations, the sweats, the throbbing veins, after getting mRNA “vaccinated”) explained, and, well, no huge outrage on these weapons of mass destruction created by USA, Israel, UK, France other shit-holes. None. Yes, of course, China and Russia, they have their directed energy weapons, their lasers, their rail guns.
As a collective, we just take it up the rear end daily, a thousand times, with these illustrations of the perversion of the inventors (scientists) and the CEOs and their armies of Eichmanns and then their armies of wrench turners and computer motherboard makers to help build these tools of oppression and murder. .
Get this one here:
The United Kingdom deployed an American-made Long Range Acoustic Device (LRAD), in essence, a sound cannon, during the London 2012 Olympics. Products like LRAD represent a shift from military to domestic usage of directed energy weapons, Dawson noted, explaining:
DEW manufacturers seem to be developing more hand-held versions of what was industrial-scale military weaponry. So they are transitioning from something that was the size of a truck used in Afghanistan or Iraq and turning it into something more like a taser that can be held by a police officer. In fact, the Taser Corporation, as well as other manufacturers of crowd-control weaponry, are listed in the WikiLeaks files as being manufacturers of directed energy weapons.”
LRADs are used at airports to deter wildlife from runways. But they are also commonly used by law enforcement against protestors, such as at Occupy Oakland, the George Floyd protests, and at the 2017 Women’s March.
[An EU police officer deploys an LRAD near a popular refugee crossing point on the Greek – Turkish border, May 21, 2021. Giannis Papanikos | AP]
LRAD focuses a piercing and unbearable noise at those at whom it is pointed, leaving targets dizzy and suffering headaches. It is undoubtedly effective, but also poses a risk to human health. The National Institutes of Health advises that permanent hearing loss can begin when exposed to sounds of more than 85 dB. Yet police LRADs are capable of producing sounds of higher than 150 dB. There are serious concerns that the LRAD will be used liberally and illegally to disperse peaceful demonstrations. This is already happening: in 2017, the city of New York was forced to pay $748,000 to Black Lives Matter protestors targeted with LRAD. The NYPD suspended its use.
So, look at the thug, with earplugs and fake mask on, while using a weapon turned on refugees. Now if this is not a picture of the Great White Sadistic Race, then, I can’t begin to help you, kind reader.
So, from illegal and unethical and monstrous weapons against we the people, to the power of the Food and Drug Administration’s prostitutes in the employ of Big Pharma and Big Med:
Yep, emergency use authorization to approve the universal jabbing of hundreds of bottles of boosters on the wall, that FDA is something else —
Resveratrol, a plant-derived polyphenol found in grapes, could be eliminated in supplement form like pyridoxamine (B6) was a number of years ago due to an FDA back-channel that lets Big Pharma turn supplements into drugs. If Big Pharma asks the FDA to remove resveratrol, the agency’s job of eliminating these supplements is made much easier if it gets the “mandatory filing” requirement that it wants. We need to fight for major changes in the law and to block this “mandatory list” from ever passing to protect our access to important supplements.
Resveratrol has been available as a supplement for years. But we know from FDA documents that the agency rejected a “new supplement” notification for resveratrol, stating that resveratrol doesn’t meet the legal definition of a supplement because a drug company started investigating it as a drug in 2001, and the agency has no evidence that resveratrol was sold as a supplement before that date. This means that the drug company could, at any time, petition the FDA to remove resveratrol supplements from the market. This is what happened to pyridoxamine, a form of B6, and it still isn’t available as a supplement even though no drug ever came to market; it could also happen to CBD and l-glutamine.
So, imagine, all those supplements, all those proven natural elements to keep us out of the medical system. Out of the death chambers of doctors’ offices and mass murder hospitals. You know, this FDA and CDC and NIH group of liars, or in some camps, poison delivery villains:
Rumble — Expert Testimony provided by Dr. Christina Parks, Ph.D, to the Michigan House of Representatives in hearing on HB 4471. This is an unedited screen recording. This science of viruses, what they can and cannot do, and that is a huge discussion point, though I see this doctor talking to glazed eyes in the Michigan House — Eight minutes to get illuminated so please, watch. This absurdity, using boosters of those mRNA jabs to stop the Delta Variant? Makes zero sense. Listen, watch, and enlighten yourself.
If there are no national leaders, folks with bully pulpits, with media stages, to really drill down on the absurdity of this country, these trillions lost/stolen of our tax dollars, then the cascading number of stories will continue to come out with no umph, no fanfare, no repercussions.
The Pentagon doesn’t care that it snuffed out innocent lives in an airstrike; it does that all the time and its officials would do it a lot more if that’s what it took to secure their futures as lobbyists, consultants, board members and executives for defense industry corporations after they retire from the military. And the mass media don’t care either; they only cared about this one particular highly politicized airstrike during a withdrawal from a military engagement the mass media vehemently opposed.
“Pentagon acknowledges Aug. 29 drone strike in Afghanistan was a tragic mistake that killed 10 civilians.” Can you believe that headline? Not “admits” but “acknowledges”. Not “killed children while targeting an aid worker based on flimsy evidence” but “was a tragic mistake”. How many times did New York Times editors rewrite this? Imagine if this had been a Russian airstrike.
It’s the CIA (and assassinations) Stupid!
And so, we get back to the USA, CIA, all those nefarious mutants from the UK, Israel, et al. I was almost five when Dag Hammarskjoild was murdered (1961). This documentary goes around the evidence, gets into the ugly reality of MI6 and CIA and apartheid whites wanting to eradicate the Blacks in, well, Black Africa. Lo and behold, the documentary that looks into the UN chief’s murder exposes another reality — a clandestine group using fake medical doctors and fake clinics to inoculate Blacks (poor, of course) with HIV, to help spread the deadly virus.
Former President Harry Truman told reporters two days after Dag Hammarskjöld’s death on Sept. 18, 1961 that the U.N. secretary-general “was on the point of getting something done when they killed him. Notice that I said ‘when they killed him.’”
The mystery of the second U.N. secretary-general’s death festered until the 2011 book Who Killed Hammarskjöld? by British researcher Susan Williams, who uncovered new evidence that pointed to the likelihood that U.S., British and South African intelligence had a hand in his death in a plane crash in Northern Rhodesia, today’s Zambia. He was on his way to negotiate a cease-fire in Katanga’s separatist war from the Congo.
Williams’ findings led to an independent commission that called on the U.N. to reopen its 1962 probe in the killing, which ended with an open verdict. “The possibility … the plane was … forced into descent by some form of hostile action is supported by sufficient evidence to merit further inquiry,” the commission concluded.
All roads lead to hell, when it comes to USA, Israel, UK, EU and Canada. Exterminate all the Brutes!
As the armed conflict between Ethiopia and the Tigray Peoples Liberation Front (TPLF) enters a new phase, Ethiopians are uniting against their common enemy. The TPLF is not a group of freedom fighters standing up for the downtrodden; they are a terrorist insurgent force waging a war against a sovereign state. Murdering, raping, destroying property and the lives of Ethiopians, the TPLF is a cancer that for decades has thrown a suffocating shadow of fear and division over the country, a cancer that must be cut out totally if Ethiopia is to flourish.
For 27 years they were the dominant force within a so-called coalition government. Corrupt and brutal, the TPLF stole election after election, trampled on human rights, embezzled federal funds and aid money and committed State Terrorism in various regions of the country. Administering a policy of Ethnic Federalism, they ruled through fear, divided the people along ethnic lines and are widely hated by most Ethiopians.
In 2018, after sustained public protests, they were ousted. However, after such a long period in power their divisive methodology and ideals still have influence. Senior members retreated to their Tigray heartland after losing office, regrouped, plotted, and waited for an opportunity to rise up against the government.
On 4 November 2020 they attacked the Ethiopian National Defense Forces Base in the northern region of Tigray. They killed soldiers, took control of the military’s Northern Command in Mekelle (capital of Tigray) and raided federal armories. This act of terrorism set in motion an armed conflict in the northern region of Tigray; a fight the TPLF had been itching for, which has now spread into the neighboring region of Ahmara.
Thousands have died, combatants and civilians; claims of rape and sexual violence are widespread; tens of thousands have been displaced, homeless and hungry, with large numbers, frightened and distressed, making their way to camps in neighboring Sudan.
The TPLF’s brutal actions should be condemned unreservedly by foreign governments, particularly Ethiopia’s major donors. But, far from standing with the government, the US, UK and EU have consistently supported the terrorists, circulating misinformation, making false claims against Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, his government and Ethiopian forces.
In an attempt to stop the killing and defuse the situation, on 28 June, the Government declared a “unilateral humanitarian ceasefire” and withdrew its forces from Tigray. In response, the TPLF marched into the regional capital and issued a series of outlandish conditions for complying: They demanded the release of all Tigray political prisoners (imprisoned for atrocities committed over many years), falsely accused Prime Minister Abiy of starting the war, and claimed that Tigrayans “have been subjected to…genocide and ethnic cleansing”. Federal forces are fighting the TPLF not the people of Tigray. But, as a result of the TPLF instigated conflict, civilians in Tigray have been severely impacted.
Unrelenting, obdurate, Tigray forces, which have now combined with another extremist group, the Oromo Liberation Army (OLA), have ignored the ceasefire and continued their attack on Ethiopia, moving into the Afar and Amhara regions bordering Tigray. Death, destruction and chaos is left in their wake with distressing reports of civilian killings, rapes, kidnapping and robbery. Homes are destroyed, office buildings, including Kabele (local government) headquarters vandalized, documents burnt, water and electricity supplies cut, Churches and schools damaged or demolished, cattle killed, crops destroyed.
Over 200 civilians were killed in Afar including more than 100 children, according to UNICEF, and around 300,000 were displaced. Federal forces have now driven the aggressors out of this region. In Deber Tabor in Ahmara, the main hospital was attacked and homes destroyed. A local resident, Mr. Deres Nega told Ethiopian media how his wife, children and friends had been killed by the TPLF. His life has been torn apart. His agony is being repeated throughout the area, his pain is the pain of a nation, a pain that has but one cure, the eradication of the TPLF.
Over 200 km north of Deber Tabor, in Chena Teklehaymanot, mass graves were recently discovered containing 124 bodies, many more people (over 100) are missing feared dead. Witnesses state that the TPLF went house to house and slaughtered men, women, children, even priests (revered throughout Ethiopia) were killed. The massacre, which has been confirmed by Gizachew Muluneh, Director of Communications for the Amhara Regional State, is but one atrocity in a series of coordinated assaults by the TPLF since the government ceasefire. Getachew Shiferaw, a leading Ethiopian activist, relates that, “Civilians were massacred [by the TPLF] in Woldia, Kobo, Alamata, Lalibela, Abergele, Maytemri, Gaint, Gashena and Mersa, among others towns.” He warns that, “Chena is just the tip of the iceberg.”
Prime Minster Abiy Ahmed’s press secretary, has said that TPLF atrocities in Ahmara “were carried out to avenge the military loss the clique suffered by federal and state troops,” as its fighters were routed from Afar. The government believes the Chena massacre was carried out by “the TPLF’s Samri youth group”, who are also thought to be responsible for killing over 1,000 civilians in “the town of Maikadra…last November.” After which they escaped to Sudan and hid in a UNHCR refugee camp.
Such brutal attacks, which are consistently ignored by western governments (who know very well what is actually happening) and prominent mainstream media, are forcing the Ethiopian government, until now relatively restrained, to respond and mobilize its forces. Ethiopia’s foreign ministry recently said the TPLF was pushing the government to “change its defensive mood which has been taken for the sake of the unilateral humanitarian ceasefire,” and that unless (government) overtures for a peaceful resolution were reciprocated, “Ethiopia could deploy the entire defensive capability of the state.”
The government, which has been weak on law and order enforcement, cannot simply sit back and allow the TPLF to murder civilians. They must respond swiftly and decisively, including, if necessary, deploying the air force, something they are reluctant to do because of potential civilian casualties.
Malicious foreign forces
Since the conflict began the Ethiopian government has been battling, not just the terrorists, but malicious foreign forces and misleading information from western governments and mainstream media – the BBC, CNN, New York Times, Facebook etc. The US, which is widely believed to be indirectly arming the TPLF, has led the misinformation campaign, and appear (together with the UK and EU) to have sanctioned the TPLF’s attack on Ethiopia.
To its utter shame the Biden administration (and UK and EU) has failed to condemn the TPLF attacks, and has undermined the Ethiopian government from the outset. They repeatedly call for reconciliation (thereby legitimizing the terrorists), and instruct PM Ahmed to negotiate with the TPLF, which is not only unacceptable to the government, but to the vast majority of Ethiopians, who liken the TPLF to a pack of hyenas, pointing out the impossibility of negotiating with wild animals.
In response to their international backers’ call for ‘negotiations’ the TPLF drafted a list of preposterous demands for any such talks. Among other fantasies, they wanted PM Ahmed to step down and be replaced with one of their own, and a power-sharing arrangement introduced. This would amount to the overthrow (with US backing) of a democratically elected government: The Prosperity Party (a party of national unity founded by Abiy) has a huge mandate, taking 410 out of 436 seats in the June 2020 general election. The formation of a new government, which will include opposition parties, is expected by the end of September/early October, and is eagerly awaited.
As these malicious foreign forces seek to destabilize Ethiopia for their own corrupt geo-political reasons, and the TPLF commit atrocity after atrocity, the Ethiopian people are laying aside long held divisions (largely caused by TPLF policies) and coming together, standing shoulder to shoulder with their brothers and sisters against the poison of the terrorists and the Imperial arrogance of America and Co.
While this is unquestionably a deeply troubling moment for Ethiopia, at the same time there is cause for celebration and real optimism: The staging of the first democratic elections in the country’s long and rich history was a major achievement, as was the second filling of The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (the largest dam in Africa) reservoir. These, along with the imminent formation of a new and democratically elected government, are unifying national events. Significant development which the Ethiopian people can take great pride in as they unite against the TPLF/OLA terrorists. Destructive groups, which must be purged from the country completely and utterly if peace and social harmony are to be established, and the needed work of national transformation is to go ahead.