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The risk of reporting US drone strikes – Features – Al Jazeera English

The risk of reporting US drone strikes – Features – Al Jazeera English.

Yemen researcher says he received a death threat after investigating deadly wedding-convoy attack.

 Last updated: 12 Feb 2014 14:17

A photo of alleged victims killed in a December 12, 2013 drone strike in central Yemen [Reprieve]
The disturbing phone call came after Baraa Shiban investigated a drone strike on a wedding party that killed 12 people in central Yemen in December. A clear message was delivered to the human rights researcher over the phone after a major news network reported the story based on his research.

“The caller refused to identify himself and threatened my life if I continued my investigation of the strike,” Shiban told Al Jazeera, noting he conducted similar studies of US drone operations in the past, but had never before received death threats.

Shiban works for the UK-based human rights group Reprieve and interviewed survivors two days after the attack. His investigation ascertained that 12 people were killed after four missiles were fired at the convoy. There were also 14 victims with severe wounds; some lost limbs, others their eyes.

Along with the eyewitness testimony, Shiban gained access to video and still images of the alleged victims of the drone strike. Photos of the aftermath of drone attacks – whether in the tribal regions of Pakistan, or in the deserts of Yemen – are rarely captured. Most occur in obscure regions with hostile terrain, making access difficult for journalists and activists.

I was in the front car and I heard a huge explosion. I went out to see what happened and suddenly another two missiles hit the place. Everyone in the car behind us got killed.

– Mohammed Abdullah al-Taisi,drone victim

 

On December 12, 2013 , about 60 people were traveling in a convoy to attend the wedding near the city of Radda, in Yemen’s central province of al-Bayda. At about 4:30pm, the drivers halted the vehicles when they heard an aircraft approach.

“I was in the front car and I heard a huge explosion,” recalled victim Mohammed Abdullah al-Taisi. “I went out to see what happened and suddenly another two missiles hit the place. Everyone in the car behind us got killed.”

Equipped with the evidence Shiban went to the media, and a day later he received the call threatening his life.

“Just because the people were in a convoy of trucks, they were assumed to be militants and the decision was made to target them,” he said. “The people who died were shepherds and farmers. There was clearly a wedding party.”

Fear and anger

Drones piloted by the CIA and the Pentagon have operated in Yemen since 2002, killing hundreds of people – mostly members of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, but also dozens of civilians.

Peter Schaapveld is psychologist who traveled to Yemen to study the programme’s effects. He told British members of parliament in March 2013 that the constant presence of drones in the skies was causing a “psychological emergency” in the country.

“What I saw in Yemen was deeply disturbing,” Schaapveld said . “Entire communities – including young children who are the next generation of Yemenis – are being traumatised and re-traumatised by drones. Not only is this having truly awful immediate effects, but the psychological damage done will outlast any counter programme and surely outweigh any possible benefits.”

Reports of the missile strike, on a seemingly innocent wedding party, have infuriated nearly every sphere of Yemeni society, including many of the country’s top politicians.

Family members of drone strike victim Aref al-Shafee [Abubakr al-Shamahi/Reprieve] 

“The fact that the Yemeni parliament has just passed a resolution banning drones in Yemeni airspace, and that the National Dialogue has criminalised the use of drones for extrajudicial killing, demonstrates that a national consensus has been reached that these brutal and unlawful attacks are unacceptable,” Shiban said.

Reprieve said the US government is now investigating the strike in Radda following Shiban’s work. The human rights group said the Defense Department was targeting Shawqi Ali Ahmed al-Badani , whom the White House accused of organising a bomb plot that led to 19 US embassies being closed last year.

‘US values and policy’

Caitlan Hayden, a spokeswoman for the US National Security Council, noted that Yemen’s government had stated the targets of the operation were “dangerous” senior al-Qaeda figures. She said she couldn’t comment on this specific attack.

“We take extraordinary care to make sure that our counterterrorism actions are in accordance with all applicable domestic and international law and that they are consistent with US values and policy … And when we believe that civilians may have been killed, we investigate thoroughly,” Hayden told Al Jazeera .

But one survivor of the December drone attack, Salam al-Taisi, insisted no one from the wedding party was involved in terrorism. “None of the victims had anything to do with al-Qaeda or any other group. They were all from the area and all were poor villagers,” he said.

The deaths in Baydah have more resonance considering President Barrack Obama’s announcement upholding the “highest standard” when conducting operations using unmanned aerial vehicles.

“Before any strike is taken, there must be near-certainty that no civilians will be killed or injured,” Obama said in a speech at the National Defense University on May 23, 2013.

Yemen’s security forces have also scrutinised Shiban’s work on the US drone programme. But it’s not just the Yemeni police that have shown interest in him.

Baraa Shiban from human rights group Reprieve [Al Jazeera]

On September 23 last year, he arrived in the United Kingdom with the intention of speaking at a conference at Chatham House . But at Gatwick Airport he was stopped by police and questioned under Schedule 7 of the British government’s Terrorism Act 2000.

“I was asked about my investigation of the covert US drone attacks in Yemen. When I asked why the question was relevant, I was threatened with further detention,” Shiban said.

Drone-reporting dangers

Apparent attempts to suppress any kind of criticism of US covert operations are not new.

In Pakistan, an anti-drone campaigner set to testify before European parliaments has gone missing in the city of Rawalpindi. Kareem Khan , whose brother and teenage son were killed in a drone attack in December 2009, was picked up at his home by security forces in the early hours of February 5, his lawyer said. He hasn’t been heard from since.

Shiban said he is also well aware that the path he’s on now could lead to the same fate of Yemen-based journalist Abdulelah Haider Shaye .

On December 17, 2009, the Yemeni military announced it had successfully destroyed an al-Qaeda camp in al-Majala in Abyan province. But after travelling to the town, Shaye discovered it wasn’t at all an operation carried out by his government, but in fact a US cruise missile strike. And he discovered the people who died weren’t al-Qaeda fighters but innocent civilians. Among the 41 people killed, more than two-thirds were women and children.

Shaye was arrested on August 6, 2010 by Yemeni security forces and charged that October with aiding al-Qaeda by recruiting new operatives for the group. By January 2011, he was convicted and sentenced to five years in prison.

International human rights groups condemned his trial as a sham , which couldn’t provide any credible evidence of his alleged al-Qaeda associations. Shaye was being punished for exposing a US covert operation that resulted in a massacre.

After being incarcerated for nearly three years, Shaye was pardoned in July 2013 but one of the conditions of his release is he must not leave the Yemeni capital, Sanaa, for two years.

Asked about Shaye’s case, and the threats he’s received to his own life, Shiban said he’s determined to carry on highlighting the impact of drone strikes.

“This is an issue of vital importance to Yemen’s future, and I and other human rights activists will continue to defend the basic rights and democratic wishes of the Yemeni people,” he said.

Mark Udall Demands CIA Report Amid Dispute Over Torture Study

Mark Udall Demands CIA Report Amid Dispute Over Torture Study.
WASHINGTON, Dec 17 (Reuters) – A member of the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee on Tuesday disclosed the existence of a secret Central Intelligence Agency document that committee members believe supports their conclusions in a study highly critical of “waterboarding” and other harsh counterterrorism practices.

Senator Mark Udall, a Colorado Democrat, demanded the document – a CIA study of the interrogation techniques – at a confirmation hearing for Caroline Krass, President Barack Obama’s nominee to be the CIA’s general counsel.

Udall said he would not support Krass’ nomination until the previously undisclosed document was provided, raising the possibility that he might use a “hold” to stop the nomination.

The intelligence panel’s disagreement with the CIA over its 6,300-page report and the need for cooperation with Congress were a major focus of Tuesday’s hearing, which also covered the nomination of Daniel Smith to be assistant secretary of state for intelligence and research.

The dispute over the report – and revelations by former contractor Edward Snowden about sweeping electronic surveillance by the National Security Agency – have sparked debate over whether congressional oversight of U.S. spy agencies is effective enough.

The Senate panel approved a draft of its report a year ago. But the CIA disputes many of its findings and has not met lawmakers’ requests that parts of it be made public, leaving some senators frustrated at what they see as a lack of cooperation.

During the hearing, Krass told Senator Dianne Feinstein, who chairs the committee, that she did not believe members of the Senate panel had the right to see documents that provide the legal basis for CIA actions, such as waterboarding.

Maine Republican Senator Susan Collins said she was “troubled” by Krass’ answer.

‘FUNDAMENTAL QUESTIONS’

Udall asked Krass to ensure that the CIA provide the committee a copy of the internal review initiated under former CIA Director Leon Panetta of the agency’s detention and interrogation program.

“It appears that this review … is consistent with the Intelligence Committee’s report, but, amazingly, it conflicts with the official CIA response to the committee’s report,” Udall said.

“If this is true, it raises fundamental questions about why a review the CIA conducted internally years ago and never provided to the committee is so different from the CIA’s formal written response to the committee’s study,” he added.

The report’s existence was not public knowledge until Udall questioned Krass during the hearing.

Committee Democrats have concluded that the CIA obtained little or no critical intelligence from its use of secret prisons and harsh interrogation. Several panel members offered tough criticism and closely questioned Krass over her view of such techniques.

“It (the use of such techniques) was a tragic mistake of great significance in the history of this country,” West Virginia Senator Jay Rockefeller said.

Krass said she considered waterboarding to be torture.

Udall said he also wanted the White House to make a public statement committing to “the fullest possible declassification” of the committee’s study, and the CIA’s response, before he could support Krass’ nomination.

Asked if Udall would use a hold, his spokesman Mike Saccone said the senator was committed to working with the committee and the CIA on the nomination and to get the information he requested.

But Saccone added: “He will have a full range of procedural tools to pick from to accomplish this objective.” (Additional reporting by Mark Hosenball; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)

Expect Devastating Global Economic Changes In 2014

Expect Devastating Global Economic Changes In 2014.

By any reasonable measure, I think it is safe to say that the last quarter of 2013 has been an insane game of economic Russian Roulette.  Even more unsettling is the fact that most of the American population still has little to no clue that the U.S. was on the verge of a catastrophic catalyst event at least three times in the past three months alone, and that we face an even greater acceleration next year.

The first near miss was the Federal Reserve’s announcement of a possible “taper” of QE stimulus in early fall, which sent shivers through stock markets and proved what we have been saying all along – that the entire recovery is a facade built on an ever thinning balloon of fiat money.  Today, markets function entirely on the expectation that the Fed will continue stimulus forever.  If the Fed does cut QE in any way, the frail psychology of the markets will shatter, and the country will come crashing down with it.

The second near miss was the possible unilateral invasion of Syria demanded by the Obama Administration.  As we have discussed here at Alt-Market for years, any invasion of Syria or Iran will bring detrimental consequences to the U.S. economy and energy markets, not to mention draw heavy opposition from Russia and China.  Though the naïve shrug it off as a minor foreign policy bungle, Syria could have easily become WWIII, and I believe the only reason the establishment has not yet followed through with a strike in the region is because the alternative media has been so effective in warning the masses.  The elites need a certain percentage of support from the general public and the military for any war action to be effective, which they did not receive.  After all, no one wants to fight and die in support of CIA funded Al Qaeda terrorist cells on the other side of the world.  The establishment tried to hide who the rebels were, and failed.

The third near miss was, of course, the debt ceiling debate, which has been extended to next spring.  America came within a razor’s edge of debt default, which many people rightly fear.  What some do not yet grasp, though, is that debt default of the U.S. was NOT avoided last month, it is INEVITABLE.  Debt default will ultimately result in the death of the dollar as the world reserve currency, and the petro-currency.  This final gasp will lead to hyperstagflation within our financial system, and third world status for most of the citizenry.  It is only a matter of time, and timing.

“Timing” is truly what we are all concerned about.  Those of us in the field of alternative media and economics understand well that the U.S. is on a collision course with disaster; it is a mathematical certainty.  We no longer think in terms of “if” it happens – we only question “when” it will happen.  Our fiscal structure now hangs by the thinnest of threads, a thread which for all we know could be cut at a moments notice.  However, economic and political storms appear to be brewing with the year 2014 as a target.

Globalists have been openly seeking the destabilization of U.S. sovereignty, and they have openly admitted that the destruction of the dollar and our economic foundations will aid them in their goal.  It is important to never forget that international financiers WANT to absorb America into a new global economic structure, and that the U.S. must be debased before this can be accomplished.   Here are a few reasons why I believe 2014 may be the year they make their final move…

Debt Debate On Steroids

Nothing concrete was decided during the highly publicized “battle” between Democrats and the GOP on what would be done to solve the U.S. debt addiction.  Some people might assume that the fight will go on indefinitely, and that the “can” will be kicked down the road for years to come.  This assumption is a dangerous one.  If you thought the last debt debate was hair raising, the next is likely to give you a coronary.  Think of 2013 as a practice run, a warm up to the main event in 2014.  Why will next year be different?  Because the motivations behind a debt ceiling freeze (and thus debt default) are now supported by the obvious failure of Obamacare.

Funding for Obamacare was the underlying issue that gave strength to the push for new debt ceiling extensions.  The U.S. government has overreached financially in ever way imaginable.  We have long running entitlement programs that have been technically bankrupt for years.  But, Obamacare was so pervasive during the debt debate that we heard nothing of these existing liabilities.  Ultimately, Obamacare is the primary reason why so many Americans on the “left” want unlimited spending and inflation, and why so many Americans on the “right” are actually seeking debt default.

We all know that at the top of the pyramid the debt debate itself is false left/right theater, but it is still theater with a purpose.

In my articles ‘The Socialization Of America Is Economically Impossible’ and ‘Obamacare: Is It A Divide And Conquer Distraction’, I discussed why universal healthcare could not be implemented in America, and I predicted in advance that Obamacare was actually a farce that was designed to fail.  The program’s only purpose is to provide a vehicle by which divisions between the fake left and the fake right could be solidified in the minds of the common populace.  A lot of cynicism was directed at the notion that the government might create a socialized healthcare initiative and then allow it to fail.  Of course, we now know that is exactly what they had in mind.

During the last debt debate, Obamacare was just a policy waiting to be implemented; next debate, that policy will be rightly labeled a train wreck.  Obamacare is falling apart at it’s very inception, and evidence makes clear that the White House KNEW in advance that this would occur.  In the days before it’s launch, performance tests on the Obamacare website showed conclusively that the system could not handle more than 500 users.

Obama promised that preexisting healthcare plans would be retained by Americans and that the Affordable Care Act would not do damage to established insurance models.  He made this promise knowing full well that he could not or would not keep it.  This dishonesty has resulted in rebellion by Democrats who have sided with Republicans to pass a bill which obstructs the erasure of existing health coverage.

States once disturbingly loyal to the White House are now moving to limit the application of the Obamacare structure.

The White House had foreknowledge that the program was nowhere near ready, yet, they moved forward anyway.  Why wouldn’t they stall?  Why would Obama knowingly unleash his “opus” before it was finished?  He had it in the bag, right?  He won, right?  All he had to do was build a functioning website and keep his promises at least long enough to sucker the majority of Americans into the system.  Instead, he throws the fight and hits the canvas before he’s even punched?  Why?

It all sounds rather insane if you aren’t aware of the bigger picture, and I’m sure the average Democrat out there is wide-eyed and bewildered.  Some might blame it on “ego”, or “hubris”, but this makes little sense.  Obamacare is an American socialist’s dream.  With a simple working public interaction model, Obama would be worshiped by leftists for decades to come as the next Franklin Delano Roosevelt.  Hubris should have ENSURED that the White House launch of Obamacare would be flawless.

Once you realize that this is not about Obama, and that Obama is nothing but a middle-man for the globalists, and that the actual implementation of Obamacare never mattered to the establishment, the fog begins to clear.

With Obamacare in shambles, the dynamic of the debt debate theater changes completely.  Some Democrats may well show support for a hold on the debt ceiling, for, what reason do they have to champion more spending?  Obama has already made fools of them all, and the Obamacare motivator is essentially out of the picture.  The GOP will be energized and more unified than the last debate, giving more momentum to a debt ceiling lock.  The argument will be made that a resulting debt default will not be harmful, and that the U.S. can carry the weight of existing liabilities until the budget is balanced.
This is certainly a lie, but it is a fashionable lie that Americans will want to hear.

Americans do not want to hear that our economy is too far gone and that any motion, to spend, or to cut, will have the same result – currency collapse and fiscal implosion.  They do not want to hear that pain must be suffered before a realistic solution can be applied.  They do not want to hear the the system will have to be brought down before it can be rebuilt.  And, they definitely do not want to hear that the system will be deliberately brought down and replaced with something even worse.

Will the next debt debate in Spring 2014 end in debt default and the collapse that globalists desire so much?  It’s hard to say, but many insiders appear to be preparing for just such a scenario…

The Fed’s Buzz Kill 

No one, and I mean no one, believes the private Federal Reserve will ever commit to a taper of fiat stimulus.  Hell, I barely believe it’s possible, and I’m open to just about any scenario.  That said, I have to ask a question which few analysts seem to be asking – why does the Fed keep pre-injecting the concept of taper into the mainstream if they never intend to implement it?  When has the Fed ever pre-injected a plan into the MSM which it did not eventually implement?

The banksters have the markets in the palm of their hand, or at least they seem to.  Stocks now rise and fall according to whatever meaningless press release the central bank happens to put out on any given morning.  What do they have to gain by consistently shaking the confidence of investors around the world by suggesting that the fiat party they created will abruptly end?

The impending approval by the Senate of Janet Yellen, a champion of the printing press, would suggest to many that QE-infinity is assured.  We know that the black hole generated by the derivatives implosion cannot be filled (debts still exist in the quadrillions of dollars), and that the Fed will have to print endlessly in order to slow the deterioration of the the banking sector.  We know that none of the currency flows created by the Fed are trickling down to main street, which is why credit remains mostly frozen,  real unemployment counting U-6 measurements remains at around 25%, food stamp recipients have risen to around 50 million, and the only sales boosts to property markets are those caused by big banks buying bankrupt houses and then reissuing them as rentals.

We know that it makes sense for the central bank to continue QE, if only to continue pumping up banks and the stock market and hide the truly dismal state of the overall system.  But let’s forget about what we think “makes sense” for just a moment…

What if the Fed no longer WANTS to hide the true state of the system anymore?  What if QE is now giving back diminishing returns, and will soon be no longer effective at hiding economic weakness?Central bankers surely don’t want to take the blame for a collapse, but what if the perfect patsy is already lined up?  A patsy so hated and despised that no one would think twice about their guilt?  I am, of course, talking about the Federal Government itself.

Think about it; the failure of Obamacare promises a debt debate in the Spring of 2014 that will rock the very foundations of the global economy.  Both sides, Democrat and Republican, are ready to blame the other fully for any disastrous outcome, though “Tea Party” conservatives have been painted by the mainstream media as the lead culprits behind a financial catastrophe that began before the Tea Party was born.  The idea of “gridlock” leading to impasse and calamity is already built into the country’s consciousness.  The general public’s opinion of all areas of government has recently hit all time lows.  In fact, our opinion of government could scarcely go any lower than it already has.  Everyone HATES what government is, or what they think it is.  Most Americans would be happy to place the brunt of the blame for an economic disaster on the shoulders of Washington DC.

The genius of it is, they deserve a large part of the blame.  They helped to make possible all of the horrors the citizenry will face in the coming years.  The problem is, the public may become so blinded with rage over the failure of the political system, that they may completely forget about the role of international and central banks and turn on each other instead.

Why is the Fed now discussing, just before the possible confirmation of Janet Yellen, a stimulus dove, the need for taper measures by 2014? 

Is it just coincidence that the taper discussion is taking place parallel to the debt ceiling battle, or are these two things related?  What if the Fed plans to apply QE cuts during or after the renewed debt debate in order to make the market effects even more negative?  What if the Fed is timing the taper to give energy to a debt default?  What if the Fed wants to reduce support, so that later, when all hell breaks loose, we’ll come begging them for support?

Whether you believe a debt default will be deliberately induced or not, certain foreign investors have been preparing for such a U.S. breakdown for years, and once again, the apex investor, China, has made plans for dramatic economic policy changes to take place in 2014…

China Is Ready To File For Divorce 

The economic marriage between China and the U.S. has been touted Ad nauseum as an invincible relationship chained in eternity by unassailable interdependency.  I’ve just never bought this fanciful tale.  For years I’ve written about the likelihood that China will decouple from the American dollar apparatus, and so far, most of my warnings have come to pass.

China has pushed forward with massive physical gold purchases despite all arguments by skeptics that gold is no longer necessary or prudent as a safe haven investment.  Apparently, the Chinese know something they do not.  China is on pace to become the largest holder of gold in the world as early as 2014.

China has now issued Yuan denominated bonds and other assets around the globe, and its central bank has expanded its total balance sheet to at least $24 Trillion, outmatching the reported increased balance sheets of all other central banks:

Now, some feel that this Chinese liquidity should be considered a massive bubble on the verge of exploding, and that it will be Chinese instability, not U.S. instability, that triggers renewed crisis.  I would like to offer an alternative view…

I am not shocked at all by this incredible spike in Yuan circulation.  In fact, I expected it.  The fall back argument against China dumping the dollar as the world reserve has always been that there is no alternative currency that boasts as much liquidity as the dollar.  Well, as we now know, China has been raining Yuan down on every continent.  International banks like JP Morgan have been HELPING them do it.

China is not desperately attempting to prop up its own markets like we are in the U.S.  China is DELIBERATELY generating massive liquidity because they seek to aid the IMF in its longtime plan to replace the greenback as the world reserve currency.  These are not the activities of an investor that wants to stick with the U.S. or the dollar.  These are not the activities of a nation that wishes to continue its limited role as a source of cheap industrial labor.

China, being the largest importer of petroleum surpassing the U.S., is now planning to price its crude oil futures in Yuan, instead of the dollar.

And, the Chinese central bank has announced that it now plans to stop all purchases of U.S. dollars for its reserves.

These decisions are part of a precision strategy, a formula which was finalized during a little discussed and very secretive economic policy meeting which took place in China this past month.

While much of the media was focused on China’s call for softer restrictions on its one-child policy, they ignored the thrust of the meeting, which was to establish Chinese consumption over exports, and internationalize the Yuan.  All that is left is for China to “float” the Yuan’s value on the open market, which is an action the head of the PBOC, Zhou Xiaochuan, says he plans to expedite.

All of the reforms discussed at China’s Third Plenum meeting are supposed to begin taking shape in…that’s right…2014.

A Storm Of Septic Proportions

As I have always pointed out, economic collapse is not necessarily an event, it is a process.  The most frightening elements of this process usually do not become visible until it is too late for common people to react in a productive way.  All of the dangers covered in this article could very well set fires tomorrow, that is how close our nation is to the edge.  However, the culmination of events so far seems to be setting the stage for something, an important something, in 2014.  If the worst is possible, assume the worst is probable.  The next leg down, or the next economic carpet bombing.  Maybe slightly painful, maybe mortal.  Sadly, as long as Americans continue to remain dependent on the existing corrupt system, global bankers can pull the plug at their leisure, and determine the depth of the wound with scientific precision.

 

 

Americans Are Finally Learning About False Flag Terror Washington’s Blog

Americans Are Finally Learning About False Flag Terror Washington’s Blog.

Painting by Anthony Freda

Governments Admit They Carry Out False Flag Terror

Governments from around the world admit they carry out false flag terror:

  • A major with the Nazi SS admitted at the Nuremberg trials that – under orders from the chief of the Gestapo – he and some other Nazi operatives faked attacks on their own people and resources which they blamed on the Poles, to justify the invasion of Poland. Nazi general Franz Halder also testified at the Nuremberg trials that Nazi leader Hermann Goering admitted to setting fire to the German parliament building, and then falsely blaming the communists for the arson
  • Soviet leader  Nikita Khrushchev admitted in writing that the Soviet Union’s Red Army shelled the Russian village of Mainila in 1939, and declared that the fire originated from Finland as a basis launching the Winter War four days later
  • Israel admits that an Israeli terrorist cell operating in Egypt planted bombs in several buildings, including U.S. diplomatic facilities, then left behind “evidence” implicating the Arabs as the culprits (one of the bombs detonated prematurely, allowing the Egyptians to identify the bombers, and several of the Israelis later confessed) (and see this and this)
  • The CIA admits that it hired Iranians in the 1950′s to pose as Communists and stage bombings in Iran in order to turn the country against its democratically-elected prime minister
  • As admitted by the U.S. government, recently declassified documents show that in the 1960′s, the American Joint Chiefs of Staff signed off on a plan to blow up AMERICAN airplanes (using an elaborate plan involving the switching of airplanes), and also to commit terrorist acts on American soil, and then to blame it on the Cubans in order to justify an invasion of Cuba. See the following ABC news reportthe official documents; and watch this interview with the former Washington Investigative Producer for ABC’s World News Tonight with Peter Jennings.
  • 2 years before, American Senator George Smathers had suggested that the U.S. make “a false attack made on Guantanamo Bay which would give us the excuse of actually fomenting a fight which would then give us the excuse to go in and [overthrow Castro]“.
  • And Official State Department documents show that – only nine months before the Joint Chiefs of Staff plan was proposed – the head of the Joint Chiefs and other high-level officials discussedblowing up a consulate in the Dominican Republic in order to justify an invasion of that country. The 3 plans were not carried out, but they were all discussed as serious proposals
  • The South African Truth and Reconciliation Council found that, in 1989, the Civil Cooperation Bureau (a covert branch of the South African Defense Force) approached an explosives expert and asked him “to participate in an operation aimed at discrediting the ANC [the African National Congress] by bombing the police vehicle of the investigating officer into the murder incident”, thus framing the ANC for the bombing
  • An Algerian diplomat and several officers in the Algerian army admit that, in the 1990s, the Algerian army frequently massacred Algerian civilians and then blamed Islamic militants for the killings (and see this video; and Agence France-Presse, 9/27/2002, French Court Dismisses Algerian Defamation Suit Against Author)
  • Senior Russian Senior military and intelligence officers admit that the KGB blew up Russian apartment buildings and falsely blamed it on Chechens, in order to justify an invasion of Chechnya (and see this report and this discussion)
  • According to the Washington Post, Indonesian police admit that the Indonesian military killed American teachers in Papua in 2002 and blamed the murders on a Papuan separatist group in order to get that group listed as a terrorist organization.
  • The well-respected former Indonesian president also admits that the government probably had a role in the Bali bombings
  • As reported by BBC, the New York Times, and Associated Press, Macedonian officials admit that the government murdered 7 innocent immigrants in cold blood and pretended that they were Al Qaeda soldiers attempting to assassinate Macedonian police, in order to join the “war on terror”.
  • Former Department of Justice lawyer John Yoo suggested in 2005 that the US should go on the offensive against al-Qaeda, having “our intelligence agencies create a false terrorist organization. It could have its own websites, recruitment centers, training camps, and fundraising operations. It could launch fake terrorist operations and claim credit for real terrorist strikes, helping to sow confusion within al-Qaeda’s ranks, causing operatives to doubt others’ identities and to question the validity of communications.”
  • United Press International reported in June 2005:

    U.S. intelligence officers are reporting that some of the insurgents in Iraq are using recent-model Beretta 92 pistols, but the pistols seem to have had their serial numbers erased. The numbers do not appear to have been physically removed; the pistols seem to have come off a production line without any serial numbers. Analysts suggest the lack of serial numbers indicates that the weapons were intended for intelligence operations or terrorist cells with substantial government backing. Analysts speculate that these guns are probably from either Mossad or the CIA. Analysts speculate that agent provocateurs may be using the untraceable weapons even as U.S. authorities use insurgent attacks against civilians as evidence of the illegitimacy of the resistance.

  • Undercover Israeli soldiers admitted in 2005 to throwing stones at other Israeli soldiers so they could blame it on Palestinians, as an excuse to crack down on peaceful protests by the Palestinians
  • Quebec police admitted that, in 2007, thugs carrying rocks to a peaceful protest were actually undercover Quebec police officers (and see this)
  • At the G20 protests in London in 2009, a British member of parliament saw plain clothes police officers attempting to incite the crowd to violence
  • A Colombian army colonel has admitted that his unit murdered 57 civilians, then dressed them in uniforms and claimed they were rebels killed in combat
  • U.S. soldiers have admitted that if they kill innocent Iraqis and Afghanis, they then “drop” automatic weapons near their body so they can pretend they were militants
  • The highly-respected writer for the Telegraph Ambrose Evans-Pritchard says that the head of Saudi intelligence – Prince Bandar – admitted last the Saudi government controls “Chechen” terrorists

So Common … There’s a Name for It

This tactic is so common that it was given a name for hundreds of years ago.

“False flag terrorism” is defined as a government attacking its own people, then blaming others in order to justify going to war against the people it blames. Or as Wikipedia defines it:

False flag operations are covert operations conducted by governments, corporations, or other organizations, which are designed to appear as if they are being carried out by other entities. The name is derived from the military concept of flying false colors; that is, flying the flag of a country other than one’s own. False flag operations are not limited to war and counter-insurgency operations, and have been used in peace-time; for example, during Italy’s strategy of tension.

The term comes from the old days of wooden ships, when one ship would hang the flag of its enemy before attacking another ship in its own navy. Because the enemy’s flag, instead of the flag of the real country of the attacking ship, was hung, it was called a “false flag” attack.

Indeed, this concept is so well-accepted that rules of engagement for navalair and land warfare all prohibit false flag attacks.

Leaders Throughout History Have Acknowledged False Flags

Leaders throughout history have acknowledged the danger of false flags:

“This and no other is the root from which a tyrant springs; when he first appears he is a protector.”
– Plato

“If Tyranny and Oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy.”
– U.S. President James Madison

“A history of false flag attacks used to manipulate the minds of the people! “In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations, and epochs it is the rule.”
― Friedrich Nietzsche

“Terrorism is the best political weapon for nothing drives people harder than a fear of sudden death”.
– Adolph Hitler

“Why of course the people don’t want war … But after all it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship … Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is to tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.”
– Hermann Goering, Nazi leader.

“The easiest way to gain control of a population is to carry out acts of terror. [The public] will clamor for such laws if their personal security is threatened”.
– Josef Stalin

People Are Waking Up to False Flags

People are slowly waking up to this whole con job by governments who want to justify war.

More people are talking about the phrase “false flag” than ever before.

 

Recognizing oil as an absolute evil US CRIMINAL empire: a factual analogy Washington’s Blog

Recognizing oil as an absolute evil US CRIMINAL empire: a factual analogy Washington’s Blog.

A rogue US 1% renew threats of war on Iran, including US Secretary of State John Kerry lying to pretend Iran is hostile. The US 1% criminal threat of war continues a history of US lies and War Crimes on Iranand Iraq that most Americans know aspects of, but do not see clearly and comprehensively apart fromconstant political spin.

These “Big Lies” may be more easily recognized, exposed, and ended through analogy; a story of US relations with Iraq and Iran in absolute harmony with today’s conservative history (and here). Documentation also listed below; I wrote this ~four years ago:

Once upon a time, “Uncle” Sam had a Machiavellian business partnership with 40 years of history with Saddam; a history that included transactions worth billions in profits. Sam helped Saddam attack his neighbor Mahmoud from 1980-1988 after Mahmoud refused Sam’s control over his area of the business. Sam overthrew Mahmoud’s control over business from 1953-1979, making billions. After further complex history between Sam and Saddam, Saddam began selling product for currencies other than Sam’s.

In response, Sam used his media partners to claim Saddam had deadly weapons with intent to use them on innocent people. Saddam had a previous conviction, was forbidden to possess weapons, and was subject to regular police searches. After Sam made public statements that “someone” should assassinate Saddam, and Sam wanted his own agents with the police to “search” Saddam’s living quarters, Saddam stopped cooperating with searches. When Sam threatened to attack Saddam no matter what the police said or did, Saddam agreed to a full police search.

While the police were searching Saddam, with no weapons found and the search almost complete, Sam shot and killed Saddam.

Sam’s story for shooting Saddam is “legal self-defense.” He explains that the law allows the police to shoot dangerous people with weapons. Sam says that because he had “credible intelligence” Saddam had weapons he was certain to use, Sam was justified in killing Saddam in “pre-emptive self-defense” to “make the world a safer place.”

The facts that Saddam was being searched by the police, that the police have the authority to do the shooting and not Sam (unless Sam was under imminent threat of Saddam shooting, which Sam admits was not the case), and that the police explicitly reminded Sam that the law was a “cease-fire” that only the police have authority to manage, are all somehow immaterial in Sam’s argument.

In fact, Sam insists people like Saddam simply hate freedom.

And yes, after police silence and refusal to stop Sam and Saddam from attacking Mahmoud for 8 years, refusing to arrest Sam for killing Saddam, you should conclude police interests are different from law enforcement. And yes, because Sam’s media continues lying to protect Sam’s crimes, you should conclude Sam’s media interests are different from reporting facts.

In 2004, Mahmoud began selling product for multiple currencies rather than only Sam’s. Sam began threatening Mahmoud again, with claims Mahmoud has secret deadly weapons with intent to use them on innocent people. Mahmoud voluntarily agrees to police searches, and no evidence of any weapon has ever been found. Sam claims Mahmoud threatens his friend, Benjamin, to “wipe him off the map.” The source of the accusation is a speech Mahmoud made protesting Benjamin’s attacks on his neighbor, with the transcript proving Sam and Ben are lying.

Despite the facts, Sam and Benjamin continue saying that Mahmoud is the dangerous one, that his part of the business needs “regime change,” and the time for talk is coming to an end. Benjamin has about 400 of these deadly weapons Mahmoud is being searched for. Sam admits to having over 5,000 that he continuously upgrades, despite his legally-binding promise to get rid of all the weapons.

The police and Sam’s media never point-out that Benjamin and Sam refuse to be inspected, Sam is in violation of the law for improving rather than eliminating his weapons, and the bottom-line is that all evidence shows Mahmoud is within the law and cooperating to be searched to show he has no weapons.

Police and Sam’s media never point-out the history that Sam criminally took-over Mahmoud’s business from 1953-1979, and from 1980-1988 helped Saddam attack Mahmoud while doing nothing to stop the continuous attacks.

Police and Sam’s media are setting-up Mahmoud just as they did with Saddam, of course.

Police officially report that while there is no evidence Mahmoud has weapons, one never can tell if he has them hidden somewhere, or is planning to make them, or will make them sometime in the future. Sam’s media attempts to fear-monger about Mahmoud being a threat to peace, while remaining silent about Sam and Benjamin’s obvious lies and crimes.

One wonders… will the communities suffering under Sam’s gangster violence behind paper-thin propaganda finally rise-up and demand Sam’s arrest for OBVIOUS crimes???

Maybe. Just maybe…

Documentation:

I wrote a brief that began circulating among Congress in 2007. This published version was framed for high school seniors: War with Iraq and Afghanistan, rhetoric for war with Iran

Casualties: US Wars of Aggression: cost in money and livesAntiwar’s casualties, and Unknown News.

Iraq WMD evidence: lies, dictatorship, and evil. Part 2

US overthrew Iran’s democracy 1953-1979, armed Iraq to invade 1980-1988: now…?

Are US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan well-intended mistakes? What we now know from the evidence

US war laws explained, why Afghanistan and Iraq wars are unlawful, how to end them

What Iran’s president said about Israel, and how US War Criminal 1% lie for war

Iran’s Nuclear Program: Iran truthful, in treaty compliance; US/Israel lying, in treaty violation

WMD treaty violations and inspection refusal for biological, nuclear, chemical weapons. Iran? No, US

If the US was attacked by a criminal empire: analogy to confront US-Iran history

9/11 killed 1, injured 2 if US was a city of 100,000. US wars: CRIMINAL response

Analogy: US wars on Iraq, Iran as US criminal gangster “business”

US war history in 2 minutes: arrest US War Criminals to stop war on Iran

UK Chilcot inquiry and British lies to attack Iran: Blair admits “legal” basis for Iraq war an Orwellian lie; psychopathic monster then threatens Iran

Why Occupy? A government/economics teacher explains.

Occupy This: US History exposes the 1%’s crimes then and now (6-part series)

 

CIA Database Tracks All US Money Transfers | Zero Hedge

CIA Database Tracks All US Money Transfers | Zero Hedge.

While hardly as dramatic as ongoing revelations of Big NSA Brother probing every aspect of Americans’ lives, overnight the WSJ reported that in addition to the complete loss of privacy – which should now be taken for granted – the CIA has been added to the list of entities that scrutinize every online interaction, and is “building a vast database of international money transfers, including Western Union, that includes millions of Americans’ financial and personal data, officials familiar with the program say.” The program will be (and is) carried out under the same provision of the Patriot Act that enables the National Security Agency to collect nearly all American phone records. In other words, instead of being upfront that all the CIA, and administration, care about is tracking large flows of money that may have “evaded” taxation, and is traditionally used by expats to send modest amounts of money back to their host countries, what the CIA is instead focusing on is whether mom and pop are using Western Union to deposit $500 in Al-Qaeda’s account in Afghanistan.

The WSJ explains as much:

The data is obtained from companies in bulk, then placed in a dedicated database. Then, court-ordered rules are applied to “minimize,” or mask, the information about people in the U.S. unless that information is deemed to be of foreign-intelligence interest, a former U.S. official said.

 

limited number of analysts are allowed to search the database with queries that meet court-approved standards. This is similar to the way NSA handles its phone-data program.

 

 

The CIA, as a foreign-intelligence agency, is barred from targeting Americans in its intelligence collection. But it can conduct domestic operations for foreign intelligence purposes. The CIA program is meant to fill what U.S. officials see as an important gap in their ability to track terrorist financing world-wide, current and former U.S. officials said.

 

The program serves as the latest example of blurred lines between foreign and domestic intelligence as technology globalizes many activities carried out by citizens and terrorists alike. The CIA program also demonstrates how other U.S. spy agencies, aside from the NSA, are using the same legal authority to collect data such as details of financial transactions.

Ah yes, “limited number.” And since every single American is a potential sponsor of terrorism, it is only logical that this latest dragnet covers absolutely every single US citizen. And in the outlier case that the CIA also taps, investigates, records, and just happens to forward to the IRS, every single money transfer originating or terminating in the US, oh well.

The data collected by the CIA doesn’t include any transactions that are solely domestic, and the majority of records collected are solely foreign, but they include those to and from the U.S., as well. In some cases, it does include data beyond basic financial records, such as U.S. Social Security numbers, which can be used to tie the financial activity to a specific person. That has raised concerns among some lawmakers who learned about the program this summer, according to officials briefed on the matter.

What is peculiar is that unlike wire transfers which are virtually unlimited in size, and scrutinized by all relevant, and irrelevant, authorities money transfers are for the most part tiny and anything that is of a more sizable amount, over $3000, is already subject to the microscope treatment:

Money transfer forms differ depending on location and type. But they ask for the names, addresses and telephone numbers of senders and receivers. Depending on the transfer, senders and receivers also may be asked to provide the date and place of their birth. In most locations in the U.S., people sending $1,000 or more must provide an ID such as a driver’s license. People sending $3,000 or more must provide additional ID, such as a Social Security number or passport.

However, it appears the small transfer limit did not trouble Al-Qaeda:

The money-transfer program appears to have been inspired by details of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist plot, in which the al Qaeda hijackers were able to move about $300,000 to U.S.-based bank accounts without arousing suspicion. In part, it was because the transactions were comparably small and fit the pattern of the remittances used by immigrants or foreign visitors to send money home.

 

Some of the transfers were between bank accounts, but some moved through person-to-person transfers. In 2000, Sept. 11 plot facilitator Ramzi Binalshibh made a series of transfers, totaling more than $10,000, from Germany to the U.S., where they were collected by hijacker Marwan al-Shehhi. Two transfers were through MoneyGram and two through Western Union.

And while hardly as dramatic in the grand scheme of things, the WSJ report shows just how much, or little, personal privacy hinges on one simple word:

That program was institutionalized by 2006 and continues under a controversial authority tucked into a part of the Patriot Act known as Section 215. That law permits the government to obtain “tangible things,” including records, as long as the government shows it is reasonable to believe they are “relevant” to a terrorism investigation.

 

Under that provision, the U.S. government secretly interpreted the term “relevant” to permit collection of records on millions of people not necessarily under suspicion. That secret interpretation, used to justify the legality of the phone-records program, was brought to light in the wake of the revelations by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

 

The interpretation also was used by CIA as the legal underpinning of its bulk financial-records effort under the money-transfer program, officials said.

One doesn’t need to clarify that just like with the NSA, the CIA is logging, recording and analyzing every single money transfer of even the most nominal amount. Which, quite simply, continues to build an architecture for the full tracing of all electronic monetary transactions in the US. Because once every flow of funds is logged at even the most micro level, the US will be able to not only regulate and supervise, but to implement any type of capital and fund flow controls it desires. Which it will in due course.

 

Edward Snowden Releases “A Manifesto For The Truth” | Zero Hedge

Edward Snowden Releases “A Manifesto For The Truth” | Zero Hedge. (source)

While Edward Snowden may be reviled at the top echelons of Western developed nations and is wanted in his native US on espionage charges for peeling back the curtain on how the gargantuan government machine truly works when it is not only engaged in chronic spying on anyone abroad, but worse, on its own people, the reality is that his whistleblowing revelations have done more to shift the narrative to the topic of dwindling individual liberties abused pervasively in the US and elsewhere, than anything else in recent years. And alongside that, have led to the first reform momentum of a system that is deeply broken. Which also happens to be the topic of a five-paragraph opinion piece he released today in German weekly Der Spiegel titled “A Manifesto For The Truth” in which he writes that his revelations have been useful and society will benefit from them and that he was therefore justified in revealing the methods and targets of the US secret service.

In the Op-Ed we read that “Instead of causing damage, the usefulness of the new public knowledge for society is now clear because reforms to politics, supervision and laws are being suggested.”

RT adds“Spying as a global problem requires global solutions, he said, stressing that “criminal surveillance programs” by secret services threaten open societies, individual privacy and freedom of opinion.

“Citizens have to fight against the suppression of information about affairs of essential importance for the public,” Snowden said in his five-paragraph manifesto. Hence, “those who speak the truth are not committing a crime.”
Even with the existence of mass surveillance, spying should not define politics, Snowden said.

We have a moral duty to ensure that our laws and values limit surveillance programs and protect human rights,” he wrote.

The type of persecution campaigns that governments started after being exposed, and threats of prosecution against journalists, who blew the whistle, were “a mistake” and did not “serve the public interest,” Snowden concluded.

But “at that time the public was not in a position to judge the usefulness of these revelations. People trusted that their governments would make the right decisions,” he said.

Needless to say, all of the above points are spot on, which is why one hopes that Snowden does not intend on returning to the US to defend himself with only truth and justice to lean on, because the US Judicial system is just as broken, if not more, as every other aspect of a tentacular government, intent on growing to even more epic proportions and silencing anyone and everyone who stands in its way.

 

Supreme Propaganda on the Road to Global Tyranny | The Daily Sheeple

Supreme Propaganda on the Road to Global Tyranny | The Daily Sheeple. (source)

It happens every once in a while. When you come across stories and news articles that are so unique you wonder to yourself, this has got to be a first. Or perhaps you hear an odd story or even a plot in a movie or real-life scenario when you say to yourself, ‘that’s incredible, this is no doubt a first’, or ‘I’ve never seen such a thing’. It’s that feeling of being blind sided with a fresh new item you are pretty sure you’ve never seen or heard about before. That feeling occurred to me with a recent article I came across.

Knowing the global government agenda and knowing the impetus of their long-term plans for control and knowing how dependent they are on the controlled media, didn’t prevent me from gasping at the level of propaganda in this article. Despite knowing that no level of propaganda is unobtainable to those pushing for a new world order of human slavery, still I was taken aback in admiration of this possibly new or perhaps recycled form of propaganda.

My admitted state of ignorance about this level of propaganda notwithstanding, there it was, an article about the “perceived American inaction” in Syria. Wow, I thought at first, I didn’t know the U.S. was “inactive” in Syria, since the world has known for months about the U.S. support and supplying of weapons including chemical weapons to the terrorists (or “rebels”). As if there has been no illegal funding of the opposition and support of terrorists leading to the breakdown of order and leading to the arrest, detention, torture and murder of civilians including Christians. As if none of this has happened, the article implies all of the support given to the terrorists (rebels) qualifies as non-intervention and shameful lack of action on the part of the United States. Despite the known CIA ongoing operations in Benghazi and throughout Syria, the article completely ignores the existence of the CIA and all of the US illegal activities in Syria.

The narrative is accomplished with a few clever techniques. Perhaps the question was asked – How can a news article be used to help advance the global government agenda that is consistent with the Project for a New American Century? This article answers that question. By simply reporting the story framed so that the reader sympathizes with one of the players (villains) in the game. Focus the message of the article to the agenda of something you want them to consider, which you then hook the audience to, and hope they ride on with the idea. This IS the essence of propaganda. A mental tool (by distraction and appealing to irrational emotions) to persuade the masses to believe an idea that will push a particular political agenda. The idea is to present an alternative argument that is unrelated to the ethical or legal issue. For example, imagine a criminal considering why should I storm into a bank, shoot everyone and take the money? Then rationalizing the action in order to keep the (crime) boss happy who then will take care of me. This is a similar type of logic being offered here.

Amazingly, “Reuters Reporter” provides this example of undeniable supreme propaganda with this article. (Saudi Arabia Severs Diplomatic Ties With U.S. Over Response to Conflict in Syria). Why am I singling out this article? It doubles up the propaganda nicely. The article first wipes away all the U.S. war crimes in Syria, the known CIA operation in Benghazi, the U.S. funded and supported slaughter of countless civilians and much more. Since none of this ever happened, then by presenting a random country’s perspective, one can build an entire article based on say the U.S. obligation to maintain a good relationship with say, Saudi Arabia. In this paradigm the U.S. would be foolish to do anything that would anger this important ally like, say, not attack Syria or Iran…

This is a blitzkrieg of propaganda for your mind. These attacks only occur every once in a while. These occasional intense attacks of blatant mind-bending propaganda cannot go by without proper acknowledgment, and we owe the storm a little attention to recognize that it is there. Yes this is a little deeper level of propaganda worth reviewing. To round up our breakdown, note that the article skips from one talking point to another. Since the U.S. should be concerned with keeping Saudi Arabia happy, maybe it should then do the right thing (that is attack Syria… MORE than it is attacking it now and, yes, kill even more people) which will preserve the relationship with Saudi Arabia.

This relationship with Saudi Arabia is presented as the most important goal. No mention in the article about human rights, war powers act, Nuremberg Charter, the history of war and human suffering, ethics and the legal ramifications of waging illegal war. Instead, the reader is told all the reasons why it may not be a good idea to upset Saudi Arabia. The article and talking points are then used to rationalize and justify John Kerry’s aggressive position.

U.S. illegal intervention in Syria is already on record with many calling for the immediate impeachment of Obama. No amount of propaganda can change that. Not even making the audience view the crime from the perspective of another country or political partner will change the view of the people who are awakened. We are happy to call out their propaganda and use it as a teaching tool for others to become better at recognizing their lies.

This is an aggressive attempt to get readers to formulate an opinion on the matter based on their irrational unconscious drive. This propaganda attempts to steer the audience toward connecting emotionally with the idea of keeping a potential friend (Saudi Arabia) happy.

These are the moments that pave the road to global tyranny one step at a time. This is how they perpetuate war. They do it with propaganda, and seeing their lies and tricks is all one needs to be completely free of their mental prison. Can you see the hand being played by the globalists? Do you see the propaganda for what it is? Can it be any clearer?

Bernie Suarez is an activist, critical thinker, radio host, musician, M.D, Veteran, lover of freedom and the Constitution, and creator of the Truth and Art TV project. He also has a background in psychology and highly recommends that everyone watch a documentary titled The Century of the Self. Bernie has concluded that the way to defeat the New World Order is to truly be the change that you want to see. Manifesting the solution and putting truth into action is the very thing that will defeat the globalists. 

– See more at: http://www.thedailysheeple.com/supreme-propaganda-on-the-road-to-global-tyranny_102013#sthash.SdRtPjLD.dpuf

 

This Lack Of Syrian Aggression Will Not Stand, Man: Saudi’s Bandar Bin Sultan Furious At US | Zero Hedge

This Lack Of Syrian Aggression Will Not Stand, Man: Saudi’s Bandar Bin Sultan Furious At US | Zero Hedge. (source)

That Saudi Arabia has been furious at the US for refusing to be the monarchy’s puppet Globocop, and in the last minute declining to bomb Syria following Putin’s gambit in which World War III seemed a distinctly possible consequence of John Kerry’s hamheaded “YouTube-substantiated” false flag campaign, is no secret. However, while the US has largely forgotten this latest foreign policy debacle and the humiliation it brought upon the Department of State, Saudi Arabia is nowhere close to forgetting. Or forgiving. And this time the anger comes from the one man who truly matters, and whom we dubbed several months ago as the puppetmaster behind the Syrian campaign: the man in charge of Saudi intelligence, Prince Bandar Bin Sultan.

The WSJ reports overnight, that Prince Bandar told European diplomats this weekend that he plans to scale back cooperating with the U.S. to arm and train Syrian rebels in protest of Washington’s policy in the region, participants in the meeting said.  This demonstratively framed announcement follows Saudi Arabia’s surprise decision on Friday to renounce a seat on the United Nations Security Council. “The Saudi government, after preparing and campaigning for the seat for a year, cited what it said was the council’s ineffectiveness in resolving the Israeli-Palestinian and Syrian conflicts.”

In short: Bin Sultan has decided to take the stage and make it quite clear that this lack of aggression by the US will not stand. The question is: what can or will he do?

Diplomats here said Prince Bandar, who is leading the kingdom’s efforts to fund, train and arm rebels fighting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, invited a Western diplomat to the Saudi Red Sea city of Jeddah over the weekend to voice Riyadh’s frustration with the Obama administration and its regional policies, including the decision not to bomb Syria in response to its alleged use of chemical weapons in August.

“This was a message for the U.S., not the U.N.,” Prince Bandar was quoted by diplomats as specifying of Saudi Arabia’s decision to walk away from the Security Council membership.

U.S. officials said they interpreted Prince Bandar’s message to the Western diplomat as an expression of discontent designed to push the U.S. in a different direction. “Obviously he wants us to do more,” said a senior U.S. official.

Obviously. What is odd is that the “proxy” intelligence chief appears to have usurped foreign policy decision-making from the Saudi king himself.

 Top decisions in Saudi Arabia come from the king, Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al Saud, and it isn’t known if Prince Bandar’s reported remarks reflected a decision by the monarch, or an effort by Prince Bandar to influence the king. However, the diplomats said, Prince Bandar told them he intends to roll back a partnership with the U.S. in which the Central Intelligence Agency and other nations’ security bodies have covertly helped train Syrian rebels to fight Mr. Assad, Prince Bandar said, according to the diplomats. Saudi Arabia would work with other allies instead in that effort, including Jordan and France, the prince was quoted as saying.

If there was any confusion that the entire Syrian campaign was purely at the behest of the Qataris and the Saudis as we first suggested in May, it can finally be put to bed.

The monarchy was particularly angered by Mr. Obama’s decision to scrap plans to bomb Syria in response to the alleged chemical-weapons attack in August and, more recently, tentative overtures between Mr. Obama and Iran’s new president.

Diplomats and officials familiar with events recounted two previously undisclosed episodes during the buildup to the aborted Western strike on Syria that allegedly further unsettled the Saudi-U.S. relationship.

In the run-up to the expected U.S. strikes, Saudi leaders asked for detailed U.S. plans for posting Navy ships to guard the Saudi oil center, the Eastern Province, during any strike on Syria, an official familiar with that discussion said. The Saudis were surprised when the Americans told them U.S. ships wouldn’t be able to fully protect the oil region, the official said.

Disappointed, the Saudis told the U.S. that they were open to alternatives to their long-standing defense partnership, emphasizing that they would look for good weapons at good prices, whatever the source, the official said.

In the second episode, one Western diplomat described Saudi Arabia as eager to be a military partner in what was to have been the U.S.-led military strikes on Syria. As part of that, the Saudis asked to be given the list of military targets for the proposed strikes. The Saudis indicated they never got the information, the diplomat said.

“The Saudis are very upset. They don’t know where the Americans want to go,” said a senior European diplomat not in Riyadh.

To be sure, not just Prccne Bandar is angry – everyone else in Saudi is now fuming at Obama too:

 In Washington in recent days, Saudi officials have privately complained to U.S. lawmakers that they increasingly feel cut out of U.S. decision-making on Syria and Iran. A senior American official described the king as “angry.”

Another senior U.S. official added: “Our interests increasingly don’t align.”

Fair enough: but what can it do? It is no secret, that as the primary hub of the petrodollar system which is instrumental to keeping the dollar’s reserve status, Saudi has no choice but to cooperate with the US, or else risk even further deterioration of the USD reserve status. A development which would certainly please China… and Russia, both of which are actively engaging in Plan B preparations for the day when the USD is merely the latest dethroned reserve currency on the scrap heap of all such formerly world-dominant currencies.

Perhaps the only party that Saudi can lash out at, since it certainly fears escalating its animosity with the US even more, is Russia. And perhaps it did yesterday, when as we reported, a suicide-bombing terrorist incident captured on a dashcam killed many people, and was supposedly organized by an Islamist extremist – of the kind that Bandar told Putin several months ago are controlled and funded by Saudi intelligence chief.

If true, and if Saudi wants to project its impotence vis-a-vis the US by attacking Russia, this will likely culminate with the Sochi winter Olympics. So will Prince Bandar be crazy enough to take on none other than the former KGB chief? And more importantly, just like in the US Syrian fiasco, what happens when and if Putin retaliates against the true power that holds the USD in place?

 

CIA ramping up covert training program for moderate Syrian rebels – The Washington Post

CIA ramping up covert training program for moderate Syrian rebels – The Washington Post. (FULL ARTICLE)

The CIA is expanding a clandestine effort to train opposition fighters in Syria amid concern that moderate, U.S.-backed militias are rapidly losing ground in the country’s civil war, U.S. officials said.But the CIA program is so minuscule that it is expected to produce only a few hundred trained fighters each month even after it is enlarged, a level that officials said will do little to bolster rebel forces that are being eclipsed by radical Islamists in the fight against the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad…

The CIA’s mission, officials said, has been defined by the White House’s desire to seek a political settlement, a scenario that relies on an eventual stalemate among the warring factions rather than a clear victor. As a result, officials said, limits on the agency’s authorities enable it to provide enough support to help ensure that politically moderate, U.S.-supported militias don’t lose but not enough for them to win…..

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