Saturday, October 25, 2014

Ottawa 'Terror Attacks' Lucky Break for Harper and the Warmongers

SOTT | Oct 25, 2014 | Joe Quinn
"....why would they consider it a wise move to launch ineffective attacks Western targets, thereby providing their Western enemies with an apparently genuine pretext to continue invading, occupying and bombing Middle Eastern countries? It's almost as if these jihadis are silent partners in the West's 'war on terror'. "
At what point do we start getting suspicious?

Three weeks ago, on October 3rd, Canadian PM Stephen Harper's Conservative party narrowly passed a motion to "launch combat missions" in Iraq alongside other Western warmongering nations and their clients in the Middle East. The motion was passed (157 for to134 against) despite stiff opposition from the NDP and Liberal opposition parties and a Canadian public traditionally averse to any kind of foreign military campaigns. On the day of the vote, an online poll showed almost 60% of respondents were against Canada joining the 'coalition'.

NDP opposition leader Tom Mulcair said that the Harper government was "plunging Canada into a prolonged war without a credible plan" and that bombing ISIS "will only create more recruits for ISIS and can, in fact, prove to be disastrously counterproductive". On Monday, former prime minister Jean Chretien again criticized Canada's military involvement in Iraq saying that it was "just the latest in a long history of interventions by western countries that have left "scars" on the Middle East" and that "Canada should be putting its emphasis on humanitarian assistance for the refugees in the region."

The pusillanimous PM Harper responded by reading a gospel from the Neocon book of public scaremongering:
"It is imperative that we act with our allies to halt ISIL's spread in the region and reduce its capacity to launch terrorist attacks outside the region, including against Canada. As a Government, we know our ultimate responsibility is to protect Canadians, and to defend our citizens from those who would do harm to us and to our families.
In urging all parliament members to support the motion, Harper admitted that involving Canada in another war was not only unpopular but politically risky in the run up to next year's general election. Then again, given the widespread allegations of vote fraud leveled against Harper's Conservative party during the last general election, Harper may not have much to worry about.

Read more..

FALSE FLAG: Ottawa Shooting Attack Reveals Evidence of ‘October Drill’

IMAGE: ‘Drills goes live’ – Police squads
gather in front of Centre Block at Parliament
Hill in Ottawa, Canada (Photo o.canada.com)
21st Century Wire | Oct 25, 2014 | Shawn Helton

Was the Ottawa shooting staged?

In Ottawa, on Wednesday, October 23rd, we were told that there was a shooting attack on the National War Memorial resulting in the death of soldier Nathan Crillo, followed by multiple shots at Centre Block in the government complex at Parliament Hill – but is that really the entire story?

IMAGE: ‘Canada Shooter’ – 
Michael Zehaf-Bibeau
(Photo link md1.libe.com)
A number of evidence points have emerged which we will cover – that there was in fact a security services and law enforcement drill (see ‘When Live Drills Go Dark’, below), taking place around the time of this bizarre shooting event in Canada.


According to news reports, the shooter’s photograph (above) was obtained from an ‘unknown source’ but is considered authentic according to police. Oddly, the photograph appears to have a strange light reflection that looks as though it was taken through glass or perhaps from a screen.

Read more..

MH-17: The Untold Story (Documentary)


SOTT | Oct 24, 2014

Three months after Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 was violently brought down from the skies over Ukraine, there are still no definitive answers to what caused the tragedy. Civil conflict in the area prevented international experts from conducting a full and thorough investigation. The wreckage should have been collected and scrupulously re-assembled to identify all the damage, but this standard investigative procedure was never carried out. Until that's done, evidence can only be gleaned from pictures of the debris, the flight recorders or black boxes and eye-witnesses' testimonies. This may be enough to help build a picture of what really happened to the aircraft, whether a rocket fired from the ground or gunfire from a military jet.


Source: RT

UK Parliament Death Spiral: Occupy Movement Attempts Wake Up Call

Voice of Russia UK | Oct 24, 2014 | Tim Walklate

The protest group ‘Occupy’ is back. This time they’ve moved their demonstration to Parliament Square - directly opposite Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament. They want to show Britain’s MPs that they’re keen to push for a change to the political system in the country - that both wealth and power should be more evenly distributed. VoR's Tim Walklate went along to find out more.

Parliament Square is usually swarming with people - mostly tourists taking holiday snaps of the capital’s sights and the occasional MP or civil servant making their way to or from Whitehall. It has a large open green area in the centre, tree-lined to the west and is filled with statues of statesmen like Nelson Mandela and Winston Churchill.

But this week, the square has been “occupied” by some new residents. The “Occupy” movement, an international protest group against social and economic inequality, which maintained bases in both London’s Finsbury Square and outside St Paul’s Cathedral between 2011 and 2012, has now returned to London.

Now, in much smaller numbers, it frequents a place where numerous demonstrations and protests have previously been held in the past. Here for just one week until Monday evening, the Occupy Democracy campaign say on their website that they intend to “direct the energy from current single-issue struggles into a critical mass that can radically challenge the corrupt and unrepresentative system.”

Is this anything different from the Occupy movement of three years ago, you may ask? One of the organisers, George Barda, says that this time they want to demonstrate against the monopoly held by the three main Westminster parties: the Conservatives, Labour and the Liberal Democrats. He believes that they only represent the interests of big business and the wealthy: “There is an alternative and it’s not rocket science. We are the inheritors of the struggles of previous generations and of the post-war period, which was far from perfect.

"This gave us the broad-brush of what you can do when the people take some meaningful control of democracy. You can tax the absurdly wealthy, who otherwise have an incredibly unfair share of the economic pie and you can use that money to pay for social housing, hospitals and benefits for people in need. When you spread the wealth effectively you have a far more stable economy.

"If you educate people properly then they are far more effective contributors to the tax base. It works much better for everybody. When you have this incredible concentration of wealth then you get an increasingly dysfunctional economy - fewer and fewer people actually have money in their pockets required to pay for things, so all the local businesses suffer and more and more people have to go into debt to pay for things that they need.”

The protesters have been at Parliament Square since the 17th of October and plan to stay until Monday. However, during their brief time outside Westminster, they’ve had to deal with a growing police presence. On Sunday a group of protesters were forcibly removed from a sheet of tarpaulin laid out on the square - because the sheet was classified as sleeping equipment by the police.

Two days later on Tuesday around 30 people, including Jenny Jones from the Green Party, were arrested and fencing was erected around the grassy area of the square by the Greater London Authority for maintenance work.In spite of these scuffles with the authorities, the protesters remain, though in far smaller numbers than the hundreds who occupied the square earlier in the week.

The protesters will remain here at Parliament Square for just a few more days. But people like George say that they will continue to hold spontaneous demonstrations up and down the country in the coming months. They say that there’s a lot wrong with democracy in this country and that the Westminster parties need to better represent the interests of the British people.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Ebola, ISIS and Ottawa Shooting Conspiracies with Patrick Henningsen

The Lip TV | Oct 24, 2014


Ebola and ISIS funding conspiracies and a potential hoax surrounding the recent shootings in Ottawa are looked at with investigative journalist Patrick Henningsen. We also discuss secret 9/11 documents, biological attacks and Islam in the media, in this Buzzsaw episode with Sean Stone.

GUEST BIO:
Patrick Henningsen is a writer, investigative journalist, and filmmaker and founder of the news website 21stCenturyWire.com. He has appeared on RT news and has also written for the Guardian.co.uk, GlobalResearch.ca, and Infowars.com. He is currently investigating issues on location in the Middle East and in Southern Europe. Patrick is a graduate of California State University at San Luis Obispo.

ADD’L LINKS:
https://www.youtube.com/user/21stCent...
https://twitter.com/21WIRE
http://21stcenturywire.com/

Putin: US trying to impose will on other nations

Press TV | Oct 24, 2014

Russian President Vladimir Putin has accused the US of trying to impose its will on other countries.

Putin said Washington’s policy has destabilized the world. The Russian president also criticized US interference in other countries as arbitrary. Instead, he urged talks on internationally acceptable conditions for any use of force. Putin also condemned Western sanctions against Moscow over the crisis in Ukraine. He however said the sanctions will not force his country to beg as Russia is strong. Putin added that Russia did not initiate the ongoing tensions between Moscow and the West. He said the quote-so-called winners of the cold war want to redraw the entire world exclusively for themselves. Tensions between Russia and the West have hit levels unprecedented since the cold war era, which came to an end in the early 1990s.

'Flying Man' UFO baffles aviation experts - Spacing Out!

Open Minds TV | Oct 24, 2014


The UK Airprox Board recently investigated a case where a "flying man" UFO flew past a plane. That and other UFO news on this episode of Spacing Out!

Stories discussed on this episode:

- Brazil UFO turns night to day
http://www.openminds.tv/ufo-turns-nig...

- Documentary says Roswell mystery is solved
http://www.openminds.tv/roswell-myste...

- Travis Walton's Skyfire conference
http://www.openminds.tv/travis-walton...

- 3 football field-sized UFOs in West Virginia
http://www.openminds.tv/three-footbal...

[...]

Journalists under attack, hypocritical Western media remains silent

Reuters / Louafi Larbi
RT | Oct 24, 2014 | Eric Draitser

The suspicious death of US-born journalist Serena Shim, and the deafening silence on the story in the US, is merely the latest example of the blatant double standard employed by the Western media.

Shim, a 29 year old American journalist of Lebanese descent, had been covering the ongoing war in Syria, specifically the current battle between ISIS militants and Kurdish forces near the Syrian town of Kobani, from the Turkish-Syrian border. Shim was traveling in a rental car back to her hotel after reporting from the Turkish town of Suruc near the Syrian border, when the car was allegedly struck by a heavy vehicle, killing Shim.

While Turkish authorities quickly contended that her death was an accident, many around the world, including executives and senior staff members of Press TV – the Iranian news agency for which Shim was working – have expressed doubts about the circumstances of her death, describing it as “suspicious.” Such suspicions are clearly warranted as the alleged accident came just one day after Shim expressed fears for her own safety after receiving death threats from Turkish intelligence (MIT). In an interview with Press TV just after being accused of being a spy and receiving the threats, Shim stated:

“I’m very surprised at this accusation – I even thought of approaching Turkish intelligence because I have nothing to hide... I am a bit worried, because...Turkey has been labeled by Reporters Without Borders as the largest prison for journalists…so I am frightened about what they might use against me... We were some of the first people on the ground –if not the first people – to get that story of…militants going in through the Turkish border…I’ve got images of them in World Food Organization trucks. It was very apparent that they were militants by their beards, by the clothes they wore, and they were going in there with NGO trucks.”

This revealing interview highlights the fact that Shim, unlike many Western journalists reporting on the Syrian conflict, was actually involved in a serious investigation, including documenting the collusion between Turkish intelligence and militant extremists to smuggle fighters and weapons into Syria. While this aspect of the Syrian conflict has been documented by Reuters, the New York Times, and others, Shim was on the ground covering the story, getting documentary evidence including photos and video of the militants in NGO trucks, a blatant violation of international law. It is precisely this damning evidence of Turkey’s involvement in the Syrian war that likely sparked the death threats against her and, quite likely, led to her possible assassination.

Shim’s tragic death has sparked outrage, not to mention tremendous grief, from her family and colleagues who have called for a thorough and impartial investigation into the circumstances of her death. Condolences and expressions of sorrow from around the world have come pouring in to both Press TV and the Shim family. However, quite conspicuously, there has been a near total media blackout in the West, especially in the United States, the country of which Shim was a citizen.

Serena Shim (Screenshot from youtube
video by PressTV News Videos)
When Are Journalists’ Deaths Newsworthy?  

In the wake of Shim’s death and the shameful lack of coverage it has received in the West, disturbing questions emerge as to the attitude of Western media toward the assaults, kidnappings, and killings and/or suspicious deaths of journalists. Specifically, major media outlets and their respective governments and corporate owners must explain why certain journalists’ deaths are international news stories sparking global outrage and serving as the pretexts for military engagement, while others are conveniently swept under the rug, receiving at best a passing mention.

The international outcry over the kidnapping and beheading of James Foley dominated the headlines for weeks, and served as the immediate justification for the US-led airstrikes against ISIS in Syria. Aside from glowing tributes to Foley from nearly every major media organization, and a memorial page dedicated to him and his fans established by Reporters Without Borders, even President Obama spoke of Foley, describing him as “a man who lived his work, who courageously told the stories of his fellow human beings, who was liked and loved by friends and family...We will do everything we can to protect our people and the timeless values that we stand for.” Such high praise coming from the President himself demonstrates the political and social significance of Foley’s death for the US.

And yet, Serena Shim who, like Foley, was a US citizen receives no such coverage. There are no glowing tributes from news organizations, most of which haven’t even bothered to report on her suspicious death. There are few stories even mentioning the incident and, the few that there are, painstakingly attempt to frame the incident as an accident, validating the assertions of Turkish officials, despite there having been no investigation, and the more-than-coincidental death threats she had received just hours before. There has been no public statement as yet from Reporters Without Borders or any other press freedom organization charged with protecting and promoting freedom of the press and the universal protection of journalists. Why? What is the difference between Serena Shim and James Foley that explains the striking disparity in the media coverage and public outcry?

US freelance reporter James Foley
(AFP Photo / Nicole Tung)
It’s What You Say and Who You Work For 

  Serena Shim’s death illustrates quite clearly the double standard applied by Western media and policymakers; Foley’s death was a national tragedy, Shim’s death a mere footnote at best. The inescapable fact is that this disparity is due not to whom they were, but rather who they worked for. Foley was a willing participant in the US-NATO war in Libya, “embedding” himself with the so called “rebels” who, thanks to a massive NATO bombing campaign that effectively destroyed Libyan military capabilities, participated in the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi and the government of the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya.

Foley presented a picture of heroism and self-sacrifice on the part of the rebels, many of whom had direct links to al-Qaeda and global terrorist networks stretching from Afghanistan to Saudi Arabia, portraying them as true patriots liberating their country of a brutal dictator. In effect, Foley was one of the chief propagandists for the NATO operation in Libya, shooting photographs that became central to the image Washington and NATO wanted to portray.

In stark contrast, Shim was working for Iran’s Press TV, a news outlet funded by the Iranian government which provides a counter-narrative to the one presented in the Western media. Press TV’s reportage has been critical of the international operation against Syria, including countless reports, debates, and analysis of the role of Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Washington, Tel Aviv, and others in fomenting the war thus far.

Press TV has been deeply critical of US policy vis-à-vis Syria and Iraq, and has presented numerous reports questioning the role of international actors in those conflicts. Shim herself was killed just hours after breaking the news of militant extremists crossing the border into Syria with the assistance of Turkish intelligence, using World Food Program trucks. This bombshell story substantiated the countless other reports dating back to 2012 of Turkish intelligence’s involvement in precisely this sort of operation.

And so, it is clear that the media and government response to the death of journalists directly correlates to the kind of reporting being done. If you are journalist who works for a Western media outlet, and substantiates and propagates the Western narrative, then you are a hero and your death is a national tragedy that elicits a swift response. If, however, you are a journalist who works for a non-Western news organization, and is critical of the West and its policies and actions, then your death is simply not newsworthy and will be quickly forgotten. Such double standards, hypocrisy, and egregious immorality typify Western attitudes towards journalists and the role of the media.

Reuters / Yannis Behrakis
Sadly, Not the First or Last Time  

Perhaps the most appalling aspect of this story is the fact that Shim’s death is only the latest in a long line of journalists’ deaths in recent months and years that have been almost entirely ignored by the Western media. From Ukraine to Syria and Gaza, journalists have been killed in alarming numbers while their stories are suppressed in the West.

In Eastern Ukraine, a number of Russian journalists have been assaulted, kidnapped, tortured, and/or killed by the US-backed regime’s military and paramilitary forces. In June 2014, Igor Kornelyuk and Anton Voloshin, both employed by Russia’s Rossiya TV channel, were killed near Lugansk. Despite repeated denials from the Kiev regime regarding the deliberate targeting of journalists, eyewitness accounts from the scene allege that the Russian journalists were specifically targeted by the Ukrainian forces. Viktor Denisov, the surviving member of the news crew, explained, “One hundred percent it was not accidental fire, it was an aimed action from the National Guards’ side.” Despite this eyewitness account, coupled with the shocking footage that Denisov obtained of the attack, there was almost no coverage of the incident in the international press.

Also in June 2014, Anatoly Klyan, a cameraman from Russia’s Channel One television, was killed by forces loyal to the US-backed regime in Kiev. Shot in the stomach while aboard a bus full of mothers of army conscripts that was shelled by Kiev’s military forces, Klyan died before he could make it to a hospital. While there were initial stories covering the incident in the Western media (mostly from British news outlets), there was no international outcry to protect journalists in Ukraine, no heightened scrutiny of the crimes of the Kiev military and paramilitary forces, no pressure exerted on President Poroshenko by his Western backers. One could be forgiven for thinking that the incident was quietly swept under the rug in hopes that it would be forgotten.

In August 2014, Rossiya Segodnya (formerly RIA Novosti) photojournalist Andrey Stenin was killed when the car he was travelling in was attacked by Ukrainian forces, along with a number of other cars carrying civilians out of the conflict zone. Stenin was reportedly missing for over a month until it was finally confirmed that he had been killed. While he was believed to have been kidnapped, there were some expressions of support and calls for his release, particularly from the Committee to Protect Journalists which has documented a number of crimes committed against journalists, especially Russian journalists, by Ukrainian authorities. However, beyond the professional community, there was decidedly little outcry, especially in the West where news of his disappearance and death went nearly unmentioned.

People walk past a coffin with the body of Russian
photojournalist Andrey Stenin during a memorial service
in Moscow, September 5, 2014 (Reuters / Sergey Karpukhin)
The deaths of these and other Russian journalists in Ukraine are, sadly, not the only attacks on non-Western journalists. Iran’s Press TV, which is now mourning the loss of Serena Shim, is all too familiar with this story. In September 2012, Press TV’s Damascus correspondent Maya Nasser was killed by a sniper while on air reporting on the attack on the Syrian army’s general staff headquarters. The fact that he was killed by a sniper, an obvious deliberate targeting of a journalist, should have made him a cause célèbre for media organizations around the world. And yet, they remained mostly silent because Nasser was not part of the Western media, and was instead reporting inconvenient facts that disputed the Western narrative of “moderate rebels” fighting against “the brutal dictator Assad.” The obvious lesson here is that journalists are legitimate targets if their reporting runs counter to the agenda of Washington and its allies.

Finally there is the tragic case of Gaza, a veritable killing field for journalists, where at least eight journalists were killed by Israeli forces during their war on Gaza in the summer of 2014. While the International Federation of Journalists lodged its formal protest with the United Nations against the targeting of its colleagues, and other organizations such as Al Haq conducted thorough investigations of the incidents, the issue was almost entirely ignored by Western media, especially US media which rather predictably provided a one-sided portrayal of events on the ground in Gaza. While much of the US media uncritically reported from the comfort and safety of Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Amman, and other cities, Palestinian journalists were losing their lives to report the horror taking place on the ground in Gaza. The silence from Western media was deafening.

It is critical to reiterate the fact that the Western media, which is always so keen to trumpet its commitment to freedom of the press, among many others, is conspicuously silent on the deaths of colleagues who happen to work for non-Western outlets. It would seem that outrage is more a function of ideology than of genuine support for fellow journalists. In this way, the Western media makes itself complicit in the crimes. By abrogating their responsibility to objectively report the facts, not to mention stand in solidarity with fallen colleagues around the world, the Western media exposes itself as an appendage of the US-NATO imperial system. 

Hollow Justice and Courts of Order in an Age of Government-Sanctioned Tyranny

© unknown

“The Constitution is not neutral. It was designed to take the government off the backs of the people.”—Justice William O. Douglas
Justice in America makes less sense with each passing day.

A Michigan couple that has been raising chickens in their backyard as a source of healthy food for their family could get up to 90 days in jail for violating a local ban on backyard hens. A Kentucky prison guard who was charged with 25 counts of sexual abuse against female inmates, trafficking controlled substances, and 50 counts of official misconduct walks away with no jail time and seven years’ probation. A 53-year-old Virginia man is facing 20 years in jail for kidnapping, despite the fact that key evidence shows him to be innocent and his accuser a liar, yet the courts claim they’re unable to do anything about it. Meanwhile, thanks to the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent refusal to hear the case of Jones v. U.S., judges can now punish individuals for crimes of which they may never have been convicted or even charged.

With every ruling handed down, it becomes more apparent that we live in an age of hollow justice, with government courts, largely lacking in vision and scope, rendering narrow rulings focused on the letter of the law. This is true at all levels of the judiciary, but especially so in the highest court of the land, the U.S. Supreme Court, which is seemingly more concerned with establishing order and protecting government agents than with upholding the rights enshrined in the Constitution.

Given the turbulence of our age, with its police overreach, military training drills on American soil, domestic surveillance, SWAT team raids, asset forfeiture, wrongful convictions, and corporate corruption, the need for a guardian of the people’s rights has never been greater.

Yet when presented with an opportunity to weigh in on these issues, what does our current Supreme Court usually do? It ducks. Prevaricates. Remains silent. Speaks to the narrowest possible concern. More often than not, it gives the government and its corporate sponsors the benefit of the doubt. Rarely do the concerns of the populace prevail.

In this way, preoccupied with their personal politics, cocooned in a priggish world of privilege, partial to those with power, money and influence, and narrowly focused on a shrinking docket (the court accepts on average 80 cases out of 8,000 each year), the justices of the current Supreme Court rarely venture beyond their rarefied comfort zones.

Every so often the justices toss a bone to those who fear they have abdicated their allegiance to the Constitution. In Riley v. California, for instance, a unanimous Court ruled that police need warrants in order to physically search the cellphones of people they arrest. Even in that instance the victory rang hollow to those who understand that government agents, equipped with military-grade surveillance equipment, don’t need physical access to our phones in order to know who we’ve been talking to or texting and what we’ve been saying.

Too often, however, as I document in A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State, the Supreme Court tends to march in lockstep with the police state.

In recent years, for example, the Court has ruled that police officers can use lethal force in car chases without fear of lawsuits; police officers can stop cars based only on “anonymous” tips; Secret Service agents are not accountable for their actions, as long as they’re done in the name of security; citizens only have a right to remain silent if they assert it; police have free reign to use drug-sniffing dogs as “search warrants on leashes,” justifying any and all police searches of vehicles stopped on the roadside; police can forcibly take your DNA, whether or not you’ve been convicted of a crime; police can stop, search, question and profile citizens and non-citizens alike; police can subject Americans to virtual strip searches, no matter the “offense”; police can break into homes without a warrant, even if it’s the wrong home; and it’s a crime to not identify yourself when a policeman asks your name.

The cases the Supreme Court refuses to hear, allowing lower court judgments to stand, are almost as critical as the ones they rule on. Some of these cases have delivered devastating blows to the rights enshrined in the Constitution. By remaining silent, the Court has affirmed that: legally owning a firearm is enough to justify a no-knock raid by police; the military can arrest and detain American citizens; students can be subjected to random lockdowns and mass searches at school; and police officers who don’t know their actions violate the law aren’t guilty of breaking the law.

What a difference nine people can make.

Contrast the Roberts Supreme Court and its occupants’ preoccupation with personal politics, its cocooned, priggish world of privilege, its partiality to those with power, money and influence, and its narrowly focused on a shrinking docket (the court accepts on average 80 cases out of 8,000 each year) with the Warren Court (1953-1969), when Earl Warren served as Chief Justice, alongside such luminaries as William J. Brennan, Jr., William O. Douglas, Hugo Black, Felix Frankfurter and Thurgood Marshall.

The Roberts Court’s decisions in recent years, characterized most often by an abject deference to government authority, military and corporate interests, have run the gamut from suppressing free speech activities and justifying suspicionless strip searches and warrantless home invasions to conferring constitutional rights on corporations, while denying them to citizens.

The Warren Court, on the other hand, handed down rulings that were instrumental in shoring up critical legal safeguards against government abuse and discrimination. Without the Warren Court, there would be no Miranda warnings, no desegregation of the schools and no civil rights protections for indigents. Yet more than any single ruling, what Warren and his colleagues did best was embody what the Supreme Court should always be—an institution established to intervene and protect the people against the government and its agents when they overstep their bounds.

Justice Douglas, who served on the Supreme Court for 36 years, was particularly vocal in his belief that Americans have a right to be left alone (“The right to be let alone is indeed the beginning of all freedom”).

Considered the most “committed civil libertarian ever to sit on the court,” Douglas was frequently controversial and far from perfect (he was part of a 6-3 majority in Korematsu vs. United States that supported the government’s internment of American citizens of Japanese descent during World War II.)

Even so, his warnings against a domineering, suspicious, totalitarian, police-driven surveillance state resonate still today. They stand as a potent reminder that while the technology and social concerns of Douglas’ day have undergone dramatic transformations in our time, the rights we are struggling to safeguard remain the same, as do the threats posed by the government.

Then, as now, government surveillance was invasive and unregulated. As Douglas observed:
We are rapidly entering the age of no privacy, where everyone is open to surveillance at all times; where there are no secrets from government. The aggressive breaches of privacy by the Government increase by geometric proportions. Wiretapping and “bugging” run rampant, without effective judicial or legislative control. Secret observation booths in government offices and closed television circuits in industry, extending even to rest rooms, are common. Offices, conference rooms, hotel rooms, and even bedrooms are “bugged” for the convenience of government.
Although the Roberts Court has so far remained silent on the NSA’s domestic surveillance program, Douglas had plenty to say about “the privacy of our citizens and the breach of that privacy by government agents”:
Once electronic surveillance … is added to the techniques of snooping which this sophisticated age has developed, we face the stark reality that the walls of privacy have broken down and all the tools of the police state are handed over to our bureaucracy on a constitutional platter… The dangers posed by wiretapping and electronic surveillance strike at the very heart of the democratic philosophy. A free society is based on the premise that there are large zones of privacy into which the Government may not intrude except in unusual circumstances…
Here’s Douglas on the dangers posed by electronic surveillance:
[W]iretapping and electronic “bugging” invariably … lay down a dragnet which indiscriminately sweeps in all conversations within its scope, without regard to the nature of the conversations, or the participants. A warrant authorizing such devices is no different from the general warrants the Fourth Amendment was intended to prohibit… Such practices can only have a damaging effect on our society.
Douglas on the ramifications of indiscriminate government surveillance:
Once sanctioned, there is every indication that their use will indiscriminately spread. The time may come when no one can be sure whether his words are being recorded for use at some future time; when everyone will fear that his most secret thoughts are no longer his own, but belong to the Government; when the most confidential and intimate conversations are always open to eager, prying ears. When that time comes, privacy, and with it liberty, will be gone. If a man's privacy can be invaded at will, who can say he is free? If his every word is taken down and evaluated, or if he is afraid every word may be, who can say he enjoys freedom of speech? If his every association is known and recorded, if the conversations with his associates are purloined, who can say he enjoys freedom of association? When such conditions obtain, our citizens will be afraid to utter any but the safest and most orthodox thoughts; afraid to associate with any but the most acceptable people. Freedom as the Constitution envisages it will have vanished.
Douglas would undoubtedly have had a lot to say about the NSA’s efforts to get the country’s “biggest spy center” in Bluffdale, Utah, fully operational, as well as government data collecting programs such as MAINWAY. Here’s his take on government data repositories on citizens:
The dossiers on all citizens mount in number and increase in size. Now they are being put on computers so that by pressing one button all the miserable, the sick, the suspect, the unpopular, the offbeat people of the Nation can be instantly identified. These examples and many others demonstrate an alarming trend whereby the privacy and dignity of our citizens is being whittled away by sometimes imperceptible steps. Taken individually, each step may be of little consequence. But when viewed as a whole, there begins to emerge a society quite unlike any we have seen—a society in which government may intrude into the secret regions of man's life at will.
Perhaps the greatest difference between Justice Douglas and his contemporaries and those who occupy the bench today can be found in his answer to a government that refuses to listen to its citizen or abide by the rule of law. “We must realize that today’s Establishment is the New George III,” noted Douglas. “Whether it will continue to adhere to his tactics, we do not know. If it does, the redress, honored in tradition, is also revolution.”

Breaking a delusion of cause and effect

© ourprg.com
No More Fake News | Oct 23, 2014 | Jon Rappoport

Human beings tend to define themselves. They sum themselves up. They present themselves with a picture of what they are.

They may not do this with precision, but they do it. And the common factor is all about limitation because, after all, definitions involve drawing boundaries. Definitions describe what is inside those boundaries and exclude what’s outside. That’s limitation.

The most pervasive way this process is carried out is through making “the past” the great determinant of the present, as if the past is a series of links that, naturally, shape the ongoing Now.

“The past adds up to the present.”

Cause and effect.

It’s a nice neat package.

And if past history isn’t enough, people can resort to a vague idea of genetic determination. Or inherent and permanent IQ. Or the pressure exerted on them by their environment. More cause and effect.

Finally, you can add a cherry on the cake: open possibility for the future, if it exists at all, comes from the universe, or The Force, or the cosmos, squeezed out of a tube like toothpaste and passed to a person by the grace of a Something that responds to good behavior and patience…

The whole notion of cause and effect as a chain is a reality that is perceived at a certain level—and what breaks the chain is entering into a level where that rule doesn’t apply.

This higher level flows from creation.

This is where creating and imagination and greater energy combine to produce new realities.

This is where and how a life undergoes a great and unprecedented change.

Societies and civilizations operate within a context of cause and effect. They thrive, to the extent they do, on that principle. They promote the principle and educate according to it.

But societies and civilizations, sooner or later, abandon the individual in favor of the group. They explain this preference in many ways, just as a drug addict spools out his reasons for using drugs.

However, the individual can take action on a very different basis.

Imagination has nothing to do with conventional cause and effect. It isn’t interested in adhering to sequential time or “the one and only space.”

Because of this, people believe imagination doesn’t really fit into the world.

People are disposed to using imagination as if it were a cause-and-effect blueprint that mirrors physical reality. This is backwards. Imagination creates its own worlds and these worlds can be fashioned without such limits.

Energy-imagination-creation is the jumping-off point from traditional cause-and-effect.

This is why, ultimately, philosophy takes a backseat to imagination. Philosophy is an attempt to sum up What Exists. Imagination creates new shapes that didn’t exist before.

Logic, which is an indispensable tool for grasping reality at the level of perceiving cause and effect, may state that A implies B, but imagination can say A implies Z or A implies B, Z, and Q.

If physical reality could send a message it would be, “Here I stand. I am a chain of cause and effect, and you are part of that chain.”

The individual says, “I create beyond that message.”

The individual can delete his own knowledge of what his imagination does, and this is what is meant by self-hypnosis. Self-hypnosis operates by inducing frequencies and vibrations that bring on amnesia. It’s a parlor trick that shrinks space.

What you imagine and create…you can then insert into the world, and even though the world may view that creation within its hypnotic context of cause and effect, that isn’t how it was produced by you.

The physics of energy, space, and time works the territory of various limited types of causation, even when it is speculating about quantum events. Your imagination goes farther. Much farther.

Consider this whole business as a stage play, in which imagination creates reality…and then the human being WHO DID THE IMAGINING steps down his own perception and views what he did within a self-hypnotic space of cause and effect AND PRETENDS REALITY IS COMING FROM SOMEPLACE ELSE.
It’s a joke. A cosmic joke.

When you sleep at night, and dream, when the chains come loose for a little while, you are laughing at the punch line.

If you care to admit it.

From this point of view, the whole concept of Collectivism, The Group, or as I like to call it, the Great Societal Cheese Melt, takes on an interesting aspect:

“Let’s all (each one of us) pretend (imagine) the individual doesn’t exist. Let’s pretend (imagine) we’re all a great Glob. Then let’s step back and view what we’ve done and pretend (imagine) The Universe or some other Force created, in its wisdom, The Collective.”

I pick this example because it underlies the whole effort of Globalism to institute One Planet under One Guiding Hand.

Globalism depends, for its success, on the acceptance of Glob-u-lism.

The recent history of phony epidemics has yet another motive: to convince us that “we’re all in the same boat,” we’re all equally under threat, we all need The Guiding Hand to tell us how we should respond.

These phony epidemics also justify the expansion of the Surveillance State: “We’re all in this together. We need more tracking to identify ‘carriers of the virus’ in our midst, so we can purify The Collective.”

Many, many government programs and edicts are designed to bolster the concept of the Collective. That is their underlying goal.

At the root is a psychology of the group: the individual is a fiction, an outmoded concept that may have been useful at one time, but has no currency now—because we have ascended to a “higher state of consciousness.”

This is the pernicious, driving psychology of the 21st century.

Any individual who is seeking an out and an excuse can surrender to the Glob.

This is the wider meaning of the preposterous concept used to justify universal vaccination: “herd immunity.”

“Yes, welcome. Join us. You’re now protected because you’re part of us. You’re absorbed in the Great Body.”

Jon Rappoport

The author of three explosive collections, THE MATRIX REVEALED, EXIT FROM THE MATRIX, and POWER OUTSIDE THE MATRIX, Jon was a candidate for a US Congressional seat in the 29th District of California. He maintains a consulting practice for private clients, the purpose of which is the expansion of personal creative power. Nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, he has worked as an investigative reporter for 30 years, writing articles on politics, medicine, and health for CBS Healthwatch, LA Weekly, Spin Magazine, Stern, and other newspapers and magazines in the US and Europe. Jon has delivered lectures and seminars on global politics, health, logic, and creative power to audiences around the world. You can sign up for his free emails at http://www.nomorefakenews.com

‘Canadian govt to use Ottawa shootings to justify its preconceived M.E. agenda‘

Ottawa police officers with guns walk up Wellington St. near
the National War Memorial where a soldier was shot
earlier in the day, just blocks away from Parliament Hill,
on October 22, 2014 in Ottawa, Canada
(AFP Photo / Mike Carroccetto)
RT | Oct 23, 2014 | Eric Draitser

Ottawa shootings are convenient for the Canadian authorities who are in an internal political conflict over their decision to join with the US in the Middle East in the “war on the Islamic State,” geopolitical analyst Eric Draitser told RT.

RT: The incident occurred in broad daylight and the assailant managed to get inside the Parliament. How was this allowed to happen?

Eric Draitser: Certainly, that’s an open question, but I think that the statement that was made regarding the tracking of the certain individuals by intelligence services also raises a number of important questions. Remember that we have a repeated pattern, a historic pattern in recent years, for instance, of the US, of the FBI tracking many of these so-called terrorists and in many ways entrapping them and/or enabling them. So if Canadian Intelligence or any other intelligence agency had eyes or ears on this individual or other individuals, there certainly is going to be an investigation needed into that. I would be very excited and anxious to know exactly what would come out of such an investigation because it is clear that this sort of incident, not only that it is not a norm in Canada, but it is certainly well-coined and convenient for the Canadian authorities who have had an internal political conflict emerging over their decision to join with the US in the Middle East in a so-called “war on the Islamic State”. Not only is the timing and intelligence angle interesting, but also the larger political question of Canada’s role within the US-led coalition. All that is on the table and all of that has turned into questions after yesterday’s events.

A tactical vehicle leaves the security perimeter on Wellington
Street, just a couple blocks away from Parliament Hill, on
October 22, 2014 in Ottawa, Canada.
(AFP Photo / Mike Carroccetto)
RT: The first shooting occurred near the National War Memorial and then the suspected attacker rushed into the Parliament. What do you make of the targets chosen by the assailant?

ED:There are targets; you can call them soft-targets that are designed to inflict maximum anxiety on the Canadian people. Remember that in order to justify any kind of a military operation; particularly for a country as demilitarized in many ways as Canada is, they are going to need to sell it to the public. A well-timed event like this certainly has that function. But again, we need to dig a little bit deeper and ask ourselves what role has Canada played not only in inspiring these individuals but also in infusing this sort of radical element into its own culture, into its own society. There is a very important domestic political struggle happening in Canada, and it is a reaction against what we call neo-con ideology and the agenda of Prime Minister Harper, someone who harkens back towards (in US politics) the Bush era. So in many ways you are seeing the transformation and radicalization of Canadian domestic politics and in many ways we could interpret yesterday’s events as a spillover or the off-shoot of this transformation.

RT: The attack has raised fears of terrorism within Canada. What reaction do you expect from the government? Would it think twice about being part of the anti-ISIS coalition?

ED: Absolutely not. It will be taken as further confirmation that it needs to move forward and be even more militant and more aggressive. This is precisely how these events are translated into the political currency that is needed in order to pursue a particular agenda. There is no real base of support for Canada’s involvement in the US-sponsored war in the Middle East. In many ways there is not that massive support in the US despite what these polls might tell you. So really then the question becomes to what extent the event will be capitalized on by the Canadian ruling class, by the Canadian elites and how it is going to translate into Canada’s foreign policy. No country and no leader of any country wants to be made to look cowardly and certainly Harper is one of these individuals, one of these leaders going to use the event in order to justify his preconceived agenda in the Middle East.

Canadian Terror Wave a Modern-Day Gladio


Global Research | Oct 23, 2014 | Tony Cartalucci

As warned, after multiple staged incidents used to ratchet up fear and paranoia in the build-up to US and its allies’ military intervention in Syria and Iraq, at least two live attacks have now been carried out in Canada – precisely as they were predicted. 

The first attack involved a deadly hit-and-run that left one Canadian soldier dead. AP would report in its article, “Terrorist ideology blamed in Canada car attack,” that: 
A young convert to Islam who killed a Canadian soldier in a hit-and-run had been on the radar of federal investigators, who feared he had jihadist ambitions and seized his passport when he tried to travel to Turkey, authorities said Tuesday.
 The second, most recent attack, involved a shooting in Ottawa injuring several and killing another Canadian soldier on parliament Hill. RT in its article, “Ottawa gunman ‘identified’ as recent Muslim convert, high-risk traveler,” would report that: 
While the name of the Ottawa gunman is yet to be announced, a number of officials told numerous media that the shooter is believed to be Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, a recent Muslim convert, allegedly designated as a high-risk traveler. 
Michael Zehaf-Bibeau was born in Quebec as Michael Joseph Hall north of Montreal, two US officials told Reuters, claiming that American law enforcement agencies have been advised that the attacker recently converted to Islam.  
AP sources also identified the man to be Zehaf-Bibeau. A Twitter account associated with Islamic State militants tweeted a photo they identified as the Ottawa shooter. The Globe and Mail reports that the shooter was designated a “high-risk traveler” by the Canadian authorities with his passport seized.
Clearly, both suspects were under the watch of not only Canadian authorities, but also US investigators, before the attacks. 

Canada’s Attacks Were Predictable – Western Security Agencies are Prime Suspects

It was warned last month after security agencies staged scares in both the US and Australia, that suspects under investigation, being walked through planned terrorist attacks by Western security agencies as part of “sting operations” would inevitably be switched to live terrorist attacks.

In mid-September A Rochester man, Mufid A. Elfgeeh, was accused by the FBI of attempting to provide material support to ISIS (undercover FBI agents), attempting to kill US soldiers, and possession of firearms and silencers (provided to him by the FBI). The FBI’s own official press release stated (emphasis added):
According to court records, Elfgeeh attempted to provide material support to ISIS in the form of personnel, namely three individuals, two of whom were cooperating with the FBI. Elfgeeh attempted to assist all three individuals in traveling to Syria to join and fight on behalf of ISIS. Elfgeeh also plotted to shoot and kill members of the United States military who had returned from Iraq. As part of the plan to kill soldiers, Elfgeeh purchased two handguns equipped with firearm silencers and ammunition from a confidential source. The handguns were made inoperable by the FBI before the confidential source gave them to Elfgeeh.
It was warned that only an inoperable firearm stood between Elfgeeh’s arrest and his successful execution of deadly plans hatched by him and his undercover FBI handlers. This script, written by the FBI to entrap Elfgeeh, would be followed almost to the letter in live attacks subsequently carried out in Canada resulting in the death of two Canadian soldiers. Conveniently, both suspects are now dead and little chance remains of ascertaining the truth of who they were in contact with and how they carried out their deadly attacks. 

With both suspects having been on both US and Canadian watch lists – it is very likely undercover agents were involved in either one or both cases. While many possibilities exist, Western security agencies should be among the first suspects considered as potential collaborators. 
 
A Modern-Day Operation Gladio - Inducing Fear, Obedience, and Control

Before Elfgeeh’s entrapment and later live attacks in Canada, US policymakers and pundits had begun in earnest setting the rhetorical stage for eventual staged attacks. With serial beheadings failing to raise Western public support necessary for an expedient intervention in Syria, more insidious provocations appeared to be in the works. Setting the stage, a CBS/Associated Press story titled, “Former Deputy CIA Director: ‘I Would Not Be Surprised’ If ISIS Member Shows Up To US Mall Tomorrow With AK-47,” would claim immediately after the initial James Foley ISIS execution video that:
“The short-term concern is the Americans that have gone to fight with ISIS and the west Europeans that have gone to fight with ISIS could be trained and directed by ISIS to come to the United States to conduct small-scale attacks,” Morell stated. “If an ISIS member showed up at a mall in the United States tomorrow with an AK-47 and killed a number of Americans, I would not be surprised.”

Morell warned that over the long-term the extremist group could be planning for a 9/11-style attack that killed thousands of Americans.

The FBI has a long list of foiled terror plots of its own creation. More disturbingly are the plots they conceived but “accidentally” allowed to go “live.” One might recall the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. FBI agents, according to the New York Times, were indeed overseeing the bombers that detonated a device killing six and wounding many more at the World Trade Center.

In their article, “Tapes Depict Proposal to Thwart Bomb Used in Trade Center Blast,” NYT reported:
Law-enforcement officials were told that terrorists were building a bomb that was eventually used to blow up the World Trade Center, and they planned to thwart the plotters by secretly substituting harmless powder for the explosives, an informer said after the blast. 
The informer was to have helped the plotters build the bomb and supply the fake powder, but the plan was called off by an F.B.I. supervisor who had other ideas about how the informer, Emad A. Salem, should be used, the informer said. 
The account, which is given in the transcript of hundreds of hours of tape recordings Mr. Salem secretly made of his talks with law-enforcement agents, portrays the authorities as in a far better position than previously known to foil the Feb. 26 bombing of New York City’s tallest towers. The explosion left six people dead, more than 1,000 injured and damages in excess of half a billion dollars.
Considering the 1993 bombing and the fact that the FBI literally oversaw the construction and deployment of a deadly bomb that killed 6, it is clear that the FBI can at any time through design or disastrous incompetence, turn one of their contrived entrapment cases into a live terror attack. One can only guess at how many similar FBI operations are currently taking place within the United States involving ISIS sympathizers – any one of which could be turned into a live terror attack provided the weapons handed over to potential terrorists are functioning, just as the bomb was in 1993 when it was driven into the lower levels of the World Trade Center.

It is very likely that the recent attacks in Canada involved at least one “informant” working for the FBI. Because the FBI uses confidential informants to handle suspects, if a plot is switched ”live,” the informant will be implicated as an accomplice and the FBI’s covert role will remain uncompromised. 


Image: The FBI has an impressive portfolio of intentionally created, then foiled terror
plots. Its methods include allowing suspects to handle both real and inoperable weapons
and explosives. These methods allow the FBI to switch entrapment cases “live” at
any moment simply by switching out duds and arrests with real explosives and
successful attacks. Because the FBI uses “informants,” when attacks go live,
these confidential assets can be blamed, obfuscating the FBI’s involvement.

Everything from a mass shooting to a bombing, and even an Operation Northwoods-style false flag attack involving aircraft could be employed to provide Wall Street and London with the support it needs to accelerate its long-stalled agenda of regime change and reordering in both Syria and across the Iranian arc of influence. Readers may recall Operation Northwoods, reported on in an ABC News article titled, “U.S. Military Wanted to Provoke War With Cuba,” which bluntly stated:
In the early 1960s, America’s top military leaders reportedly drafted plans to kill innocent people and commit acts of terrorism in U.S. cities to create public support for a war against Cuba.  
Code named Operation Northwoods, the plans reportedly included the possible assassination of Cuban émigrés, sinking boats of Cuban refugees on the high seas, hijacking planes, blowing up a U.S. ship, and even orchestrating violent terrorism in U.S. cities.
In addition to Operation Northwoods, the public must also consider NATO’s Operation Gladio, and its larger “stay behind” networks established after World War II across Europe and at the center of multiple grisly assassinations, mass shootings, and terrorist bombings designed to demonize the Soviet Union as well as criminalize and crush support for left-leaning political parties growing in popularity in Western Europe. It would be determined that NATO’s own covert militant groups were killing innocent Western Europeans in order to effect a “strategy of tension” used to instill fear, obedience, and control over Western populations. 




That the FBI and Australian authorities had coordinated staged security operations in tandem on opposite ends of the globe to terrify their respective populations into line behind an impending war with Syria, and now two highly suspicious attacks have been carried out using the very script Western security agencies were using to lead suspects through “sting operations,” suggests a new “Operation Northwoods” or “Operation Gladio” of sorts is already being executed. 

Staged executions on cue by ISIS in the Middle East of US and British citizens at perfectly timed junctures of the West’s attempt to sell intervention both at home and abroad, and now live shootings just in time to heighten a new “strategy of  tension” reek of staged mayhem for the sole purpose of provoking war. Could grander and ultimately more tragic mayhem be in store? As ABC News’ article on Operation Northwoods and the Military Channel’s documentary on Operation Gladio suggest, there is no line Western special interests will hesitate to cross. 

With the West attempting to claim ISIS now has a “global” reach, the US and its partners’ attempts to obfuscate the very obvious state-sponsorship it is receiving will become exponentially more difficult. That the FBI is admittedly stringing along easily manipulated, malevolent patsies who at any time could be handed real weapons and sent on shooting sprees and/or bombings – and now apparently have been – Americans, Canadians, Europeans, and Australians would be foolish to conclude that their real enemy resides somewhere in Syria and not right beside them at home, upon the very seats of Western power. 

Thursday, October 23, 2014

US creates terrorist groups to justify wars: American journalist

© Press TV
Press TV | Oct 23, 2014

The United States is creating terrorist groups to justify its wars on foreign lands, an American journalist says.

“It is becoming very obvious…that the US intelligence community is involved in funding ISIS if you look at the military support that ISIS receives,” Mike Harris, an editor at the Veterans Today online journal, told Press TV in an interview on Thursday.

He was commenting on the Pentagon’s admission on Wednesday that ISIL terrorists captured a bundle of US weapons airdropped in the Syrian border town of Kobani earlier this week.

“The Pentagon confirmation that ISIS recently intercepted a weapons airdrop is very troubling,” Harris said, using an alternative acronym for the terrorist group, which is operating in Syria and Iraq.  

“There have been a number of anomalous things, that ISIS has captured a number of ground vehicles that were conveniently prepositioned. All of this gives me the implication that perhaps we have treasonous elements within our government,” he noted.

He went on to say that “terrorists don’t put themselves on the ground for free; it takes money to be able to arm them, to equip them, to get them trained and they have to be paid; where this money coming from.”

According to reports, ISIL terrorists were trained by the CIA in Jordan in 2012 to destabilize the Syrian government. They now control large parts of Syria and Iraq.

According to the Pentagon, US warplanes have conducted more than 260 airstrikes against ISIL in Iraq since mid-August. Some Western states have also participated in some of the strikes in Iraq.

Since late September, the US and some of its Arab allies -- Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, Jordan and the United Arab Emirates -- have been carrying out airstrikes against ISIL inside Syria without any authorization from Damascus or a UN mandate.

Harris, of the Veterans Today, said, “We had a series of whistleblowers come forward and tell us about the 90,000 bank accounts that have been discovered and detected through the Union Bank of Switzerland, but there has been no action on this.”

“Our own Congress has been notified of this and they’re still taking no action on this. Significant members of armed services got familiar [with it]…and yet they are doing nothing to track down where the martial support for ISIS is coming from. This is embarrassment,” he added.

He stated that this implies treason at “the highest levels within the US government. The implication is that the US is creating terrorism around the world in order to justify military adventurism.”

Listen now..

How Words Absolve Mass Murder | Brainwash Update

Breaking the Set | Oct 23, 2014

Abby Martin goes over some of the phrases and terms that are used by politicians in order to dehumanize victims of war and absolve top policy makers from responsibility.

Ottawa under attack: 'ISIS' assault on Canadian capital another false-flag terror event

The ISIS PR department has tweeted this photo
they say is "the Ottawa shooter" ... although it's unclear
how ISIS in the Middle East figured out what Ottawa
police officials don't yet know (that "multiple
shooters" is soon to become "the lone gunman"):
SOTT | Oct 22, 2014 | Niall Bradley

In Ottawa today, in an event "unprecedented in Canada's history", someone shot dead - at point blank range - one of the two soldiers who stand guard at Canada's National War Memorial. From there the suspect(s) hijacked car(s) and made their way to Parliament Buildings, where they opened fire in close proximity to Canadian government ministers and legislators. Canada's capital city is currently on lockdown as thousands of personnel from multiple security forces patrol the area and set up checkpoints to monitor vehicles going in and out of the city.

One of the shooters has been killed, allegedly by a security guard inside the Parliament. At least two patients have turned up with gunshot wounds at a local hospital. Eyewitnesses told local news outlet CTV that "a man with long hair carrying a rifle" fired four shots at a soldier next to Canada's 'Tomb of the Unknown Soldier'. That soldier has since died.

Read more..

Turks, Kurds, Americans: the Kobani riddle

Smoke and dust rise over Syrian town of Kobani
after an airstrike, as seen from the Mursitpinar
crossing on the Turkish-Syrian border in the
southeastern town of Suruc in Sanliurfa province
October 22, 2014. (Reuters/Kai Pfaffenbach)
RT | Oct 22, 2014 | Pepe Escobar

Pay close attention to the women of Kobani, where Syrian Kurds are desperately fighting ISIS/ISIL/Daesh. They are also fighting the treacherous agendas of the US, Turkey, and the government of Iraqi Kurdistan. Who will prevail?

Let’s start by talking about Rojava. The full meaning of Rojava - the three mostly Kurdish provinces of northern Syria - is conveyed in this editorial (in Turkish) published by jailed activist Kenan Kirkaya. He argues that Rojava is the home of a “revolutionary model” that challenges “the hegemony of the capitalist, nation-state system” – way beyond its regional “meaning for Kurds, or for Syrians or Kurdistan.”

Kobani – an agricultural region - happens to be at the epicenter of this non-violent experiment in democracy, made possible by an arrangement between Damascus and Rojava (you don’t go for regime change against us, we leave you alone). Here, for instance, it’s argued that “even if only a single aspect of true socialism were able to survive there, millions of discontented people would be drawn to Kobani.”

In Rojava, decision making is via popular assemblies - multicultural and multi-religious. The top three officers in each municipality are a Kurd, an Arab and an Assyrian or Armenian Christian; and at least one of these three must be a woman. Non-Kurd minorities have their own institutions and speak their own languages.
Among a myriad of women’s and youth councils, there is also an increasingly famous feminist army, the YJA Star militia (“Union of Free Women”, with the “star” symbolizing Mesopotamian goddess Ishtar).

Turkish Kurdish women mourn during the funeral of
Kurdish fighters killed during clashes against Islamic
State in Kobani, at a cemetery in the southeastern
town of Suruc, Sanliurfa province October 21, 2014.

(Reuters/Kai Pfaffenbach)
The symbolism could not be more graphic; think of the forces of Ishtar (Mesopotamia) fighting the forces of ISIS (originally an Egyptian goddess), now transmogrified into an intolerant Caliphate. In the young 21st century, it’s the female barricades of Kobani that are at the forefront of fighting fascism.
Inevitably there should be quite a few points of intersection between the International Brigades fighting fascism in Spain in 1936 and what is happening in Rojava, as stressed by one of the very few articles about it published in the mainstream Western media.

If these components were not enough to drive crazy deeply intolerant Wahhabis (and their powerful Gulf petrodollar backers) then there’s the overall political set up.

The fight in Rojava is essentially led by the PYD, which is the Syrian branch of the Turkish PKK, the Marxist guerrillas at war against Ankara since the 1970s. Washington, Brussels and NATO – under relentless Turkish pressure – have always officially ranked both PYD and PKK as “terrorists.”

Careful examination of PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan’s must-read book Democratic Confederalism reveals this terrorist/Stalinist equation as bogus (Ocalan has been confined to the island prison of Imrali since 1999.)

What the PKK – and the PYD - are striving for is “libertarian municipalism.” In fact that’s exactly what Rojava has been attempting; self-governing communities applying direct democracy, using as pillars councils, popular assemblies, cooperatives managed by workers – and defended by popular militias. Thus the positioning of Rojava in the vanguard of a worldwide cooperative economics/democracy movement whose ultimate target would be to bypass the concept of a nation-state.

Not only is this experiment taking place politically across northern Syria; in military terms, it was the PKK and the PYD who actually managed to rescue those tens of thousands of Yazidis corralled by ISIS/ISIL/Daesh in Mount Sinjar, and not American bombs, as the spin went. And now, as PYD Co-President Asya Abdullah details, what’s needed is a “corridor” to break the encirclement of Kobani by Caliph Ibrahim’s goons.

Sultan Erdogan’s power play  

Ankara, meanwhile, seems intent in prolonging a policy of “lots of problems with our neighbors.”

For Turkish Defense Minister Ismet Yilmaz, “the main cause of ISIS is the Syrian regime.” And Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu – who invented the now defunct “zero problems with our neighbors” doctrine in the first place – has repeatedly stressed Ankara will only intervene with boots on the ground in Kobani to defend the Kurds if Washington presents a “post-Assad plan.”

And then there’s a larger than life character; Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, a.k.a. Sultan Erdogan.
Sultan Erdogan’s conditions are well known. Syrian Kurds should fight against Damascus under the command of that lousy fiction, the reconstituted (and to be trained, of all places, in Saudi Arabia) Free Syrian Army; they should forget about any sort of autonomy; they should meekly accept Turkey’s request for Washington to create a no-fly zone over Syria and also a “secured” border on Syrian territory. No wonder both the PYD and Washington have rejected these demands.

Turkey's President Tayyip Erdogan.
(Reuters/Umit Bektas)
Sultan Erdogan dreams of rebooting the peace process with the PKK - and he wants to lead it in a position of force. So far his only concession has been to allow Iraqi Kurd Peshmerga to enter northern Syria to counter-balance the PYD-PKK militias, and thus prevent the strengthening of an anti-Turkish Kurdish axis.

At the same time Sultan Erdogan knows ISIS/ISIL/Daesh has already recruited up to 1,000 Turkish passport holders. His supplemental nightmare is that the toxic brew in “Syraq” will sooner rather than later mightily overspill Turkish borders.

Barbarians at the gates  

Caliph Ibrahim’s goons have already telegraphed their intention to massacre and/or enslave the entire civilian population of Kobani. And yet Kobani, per se, has no strategic value for ISIS/ISIL/Daesh (that’s what US Secretary of State John Kerry himself said last week; but then, predictably, he reversed himself). This very persuasive PYD commander though is very much aware of the ISIS/ISIL/Daesh threat.

Kobani is not essential compared to Deir ez-Zor (which has an airport supplying the Syrian Arab Army) or Hasakah (which has oil fields controlled by Kurds helped by the Syrian Arab Army). Kobani boasts no airport and no oil fields.

On the other hand, the fall of Kobani would generate immensely positive P.R. for the Caliph’s goons – widening the perception of a winning army especially among new, potential, EU passport holder recruits, as well as establishing a solid base very close to the Turkish border.

Essentially, what Sultan Erdogan is doing is to fight both Damascus (long-term) and the Kurds (medium- term) while actually giving a free pass (short-term) to ISIS/ISIL/Daesh. And yet, further on down the road, Fehim Tastekin is right; training non-existent “moderate” Syrian rebels in Saudi Arabia will only lead to the “Pakistanization” of Turkey.

As if this was not muddled enough, in a game changer - and reversing its “terrorist” dogma - Washington is now talking to the PYD. And that poses an extra headache for Sultan Erdogan.

This give-and-take between Washington and the PYD is still up for grabs. Yet some facts on the ground spell it all out; more US bombing, more US air drops. A key fact though should not be overlooked. As soon as the PYD was more or less “recognized” by Washington, PYD head Saleh Muslim went to meet the wily Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) leader Masoud Barzani. That’s when the PYD promised a “power sharing” with Barzani’s Peshmergas on running Rojava.

AFP Photo/Al-Furqan Media
Syrian Kurds who were forced to abandon Kobani and exile themselves in Turkey, and who support the PYD, cannot return to Syria; but Iraqi Kurds can go back and forth. This dodgy deal was brokered by the KRG’s intelligence chief, Lahur Talabani. The KRG, crucially, gets along very well with Ankara.

That sheds further light on Erdogan’s game; he wants the Peshmerga – who are fierce enemies of the PKK – to become the vanguard against ISIS/ISIL/Daesh and thus undermine the PYD/PKK alliance. Once again, Turkey is pitting Kurds against Kurds.

Washington for its part is manipulating Kobani to completely legitimize its crusade against ISIS/ISIL/Daesh (we should always remember how the whole thing started with a barrage of spin about the bogus, ghostly Khorasan group preparing a new 9/11).

What that means, in the long run, is a serious threat to the direct democracy experiment in Rojava – which Washington cannot but interpret as a return of communism.

Kobani is now a huge pawn in a game manipulated by Washington, Ankara and Irbil. None of these actors want the direct democracy experiment in Kobani and Rojava to bloom, expand and start to be noticed all across the Global South. The women of Kobani are in mortal danger of being, if not enslaved, bitterly betrayed.

And it gets even more ominous when the ISIS/ISIL/Daesh play on Kobani is seen essentially for what it is; a diversionary tactic, a trap for the Obama administration. What the Caliph’s goons are really aiming at is Anbar Province in Iraq – which they already largely control - and the crucial Baghdad belt. The barbarians are at the gates – not only Kobani’s but also Baghdad’s.