Fake WMD “Intelligence” and Orwellian Double-speak: Washington Is Insane

Paul Craig Roberts

In the 21st century the two hundred year-old propaganda that the American people control their government has been completely shattered. Both the Bush and Obama regimes have made it unmistakenly clear that the American people don’t even influence, much less control, the government. As far as Washington is concerned, the people are nothing but chaff in the wind.

Polls demonstrate that 65% of the US population opposes US intervention in Syria. Despite this clear indication of the people’s will, the Obama regime is ramping up a propaganda case for more arming of Washington’s mercenaries sent to overthrow the secular Syrian government and for a “no-fly zone” over Syria, which, if Libya is the example, means US or NATO aircraft attacking the Syrian army on the ground, thus serving as the air force of Washington’s imported mercenaries, euphemistically called “the Syrian rebels.”

Washington declared some time ago that the “red line” that would bring Syria under Washington’s military attack was the Assad government’s use of chemical weapons of mass destruction against Washington’s mercenaries. Once this announcement was made, everyone with a brain immediately knew that Washington would fabricate false intelligence that Assad had used chemical weapons, just as Washington presented to the United Nations the intentional lie via Secretary of State Colin Powell that Saddam Hussein in Iraq had dangerous weapons of mass destruction. Remember National Security Advisor Condi Rice’s image of a “mushroom cloud over American cities?” Propagandistic lies were Washington’s orders of the day.

NSA whistleblower Snowden issues defiant response to government threats and media lies

Eric London

Whistleblower Edward Snowden spoke publicly yesterday for the first time in a week and issued a defiant response to denunciations of his actions by both corporate-controlled parties in the US. He declared, “All I can say right now is the US government is not going to be able to cover this up by jailing or murdering me. Truth is coming and it cannot be stopped.”

Since releasing documents exposing secret spying programs targeting Americans and non-Americans alike, Snowden has been the target of an increasingly vicious campaign in the media and from government officials. The Obama administration is preparing criminal charges, and Democrats and Republicans have denounced him as a “traitor.” Meanwhile, polls show broad public support for the 29-year-old former contractor for the National Security Agency (NSA).

In comments posted Monday on the web site of the British Guardian newspaper, Snowden maintained that he is not deterred by the political establishment’s slanderous campaign or the fact that he could be targeted for assassination by US intelligence agencies. [He] issued a stinging response to accusations from former Vice President Dick Cheney and others that he is a “traitor.” He said,

“[I]t’s important to bear in mind that I’m being called a traitor by men like former Vice President Dick Cheney. This is a man who gave us the warrantless wiretapping scheme as a kind of atrocity warm-up on the way to deceitfully engineering a conflict that has killed over 4,400 and maimed nearly 32,000 Americans, as well as leaving over 100,000 Iraqis dead."

“Being called a traitor by Dick Cheney is the highest honor you can give an American, and the more panicked talk we hear from people like him, [Democratic Senator Dianne] Feinstein, and [Republican Representative Peter] King, the better off we all are. If they had taught a class on how to be the kind of citizen Dick Cheney worries about, I would have finished high school.”

Excuse Me, But Israel Has No Right To Exist

Sharmine Narwani

The phrase “right to exist” entered my consciousness in the 1990s just as the concept of the two-state solution became part of our collective lexicon. In any debate at university, when a Zionist was out of arguments, those three magic words were invoked to shut down the conversation with an outraged, “are you saying Israel doesn’t have the right to exist??”

Of course you couldn’t challenge Israel’s right to exist – that was like saying you were negating a fundamental Jewish right to have…rights, with all manner of Holocaust guilt thrown in for effect.

Except of course the Holocaust is not my fault – or that of Palestinians. The cold-blooded program of ethnically cleansing Europe of its Jewish population has been so callously and opportunistically utilized to justify the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian Arab nation, that it leaves me utterly unmoved. I have even caught myself – shock - rolling my eyes when I hear Holocaust and Israel in the same sentence.

What moves me instead in this post-two-state era, is the sheer audacity of Israel even existing.

What a fantastical idea, this notion that a bunch of rank outsiders from another continent could appropriate an existing, populated nation for themselves – and convince the “global community” that it was the moral thing to do. I’d laugh at the chutzpah if this wasn’t so serious.

Even more brazen is the mass ethnic cleansing of the indigenous Palestinian population by persecuted Jews, newly arrived from their own experience of being ethnically cleansed.

New reports detail vast scale of NSA “mega data collection”

Thomas Gaist

New reports indicate that the NSA engages in warrantless wiretapping of the audio content of telephone communications of Americans, and records and archives virtually all internet usage, everywhere.

The primary concern of the Obama administration, congressional leaders and top intelligence officials is to lie and obfuscate in order to conceal the true nature and extent of the spying.

The rapid pace of new revelations has been catching leading representatives of the American state in one blatant lie after another. On almost a daily basis, new information surfaces illustrating the vast, all-pervading scale of the NSA surveillance apparatus.

Bush administration officials and leading congressmen have repeatedly asserted that the American government does not monitor the content of telephone and other communications without a warrant. During a House Judiciary hearing on Thursday, however, Representative Jerrold Nadler cited a secret briefing with US intelligence officials exposing these assertions as lies.

When FBI director Robert Mueller claimed that the NSA required “a special, particularized order from the FISA court direct at that particular phone of that particular individual” in order to monitor communication content, Nadler responded, “We heard precisely the opposite at the briefing the other day. We heard precisely that you could get the specific information from that telephone simply based on an analyst deciding that…In other words, what just said is incorrect. So there's a conflict.”

Nadler's comment corroborate Snowden's assertion that, working as a low level analyst in Hawaii, he was able to “wiretap anyone from you or your accountant to a federal judge to even the president.”

Israel's «Golan Poker»: Tel Aviv and Doha vs. Damascus

Dmitriy Sedov

Israel's collaboration with terrorists is becoming clearer and clearer.

The events which are unfolding in the Golan Heights, in the buffer zone between Syria and Israel, are difficult to explain at first glance.

The first question is why the terrorist groups of the Syrian opposition are trying to seize positions in the Golan Heights and kidnap UN peacekeepers. What sense does that make if it has no direct influence on the course of the armed conflict within the country?

There is no question as to why, for example, there were battles for control of the border town al-Qusayr. Transit routes from Lebanon to Syria by which the rebels received aid pass through it. But the routes through the Golan Heights from Israel to Syria have been blocked since 1974, and only one border crossing through which few people passed operated there.

But at the beginning of the crisis, armed opposition groups penetrated the 25-kilometer-long demilitarized zone in the south of the Golan heights, which is patrolled by UN peacekeepers, and made it their refuge.

Obama Ups the Stakes in Syria

Stephen Lendman

Obama accuses Assad, but his "Syrian" "rebels" are constantly
becoming more and more violent. They've used sarin gas too...

Obama lied. He's a serial liar. He claims Syria used chemical weapons. His so-called red line was crossed. No verifiable evidence provides proof. Clear facts prove he lied.

Syria's Foreign Ministry called Obama's accusations "a caravan of lies" and "fabrications." On May 5, Reuters headlined "UN has testimony that Syrian rebels used sarin gas: investigator." Geneva-based

"UN human rights investigators have gathered testimony from casualties of Syria’s civil war and medical staff indicating that rebel forces have used the nerve agent sarin, one of the lead investigators said on Sunday." "The United Nations independent commission of inquiry on Syria has not yet seen evidence of government forces having used chemical weapon."

Under heavy pressure, UN investigators back-tracked. They about-faced. They recanted. They lied. They claimed no "conclusive findings as to the use of chemical weapons in Syria by any parties to the conflict." Investigators failed "to determine the precise chemical agents used, their delivery systems or the perpetrator."

Clear facts don't matter. Obama manufactured his own. He twisted reality to fit policy. He replicated a familiar scenario. Doing so reflects another Colin Powell moment. His infamous February 5, 2003 Security Council speech led to war. It was shameless deception. WMD claims were false. Powell later recanted. It was too late to matter. Iraq was ravaged and destroyed.

Waging war requires reasons to do so. When none exist, they're invented. At issue is greater intervention in Syria. Lies substitute for truth. Claims about Syria using chemical weapons don't wash. Repetition gets people to believe them. We've seen it all before.

NSA Chief Lies to Congress

Stephen Lendman

General Keith Alexander is NSA director. He's US Cyber Command head. He's in charge of lawlessly spying. He directs illegal hacking. He does both globally. He's a serial lawbreaker. He violates fundamental constitutional law. He testified before Congress. More on that below.

Edward Joseph Snowden revealed what vital to know. He exposed unconstitutional spying. He said more. He accused NSA of lawless hacking. He knows. He was there. He revealed what he saw firsthand. On June 14, Russia Today headlined "Snowden's asset: NSA hacking exposer knows secrets China wants," saying: He's currently in Hong Kong. He's a wanted man. Washington wants him extradited, arrested, prosecuted, disappeared or murdered. He fears for his safety. According to the Chinese daily Global Times:

"The US is accumulating all the advanced powers of the Internet to forge a state-level 'fist' in order to launch cyber attacks on other countries." "The unparalleled power of this 'fist' is beyond our imagination, which should be an alarm bell for us to catch up with the development of the internet."

On June 14, the South China Morning Post headlined "Edward Snowden: Classified US data shows Hong Kong hacking targets." Records show specific NSA-hacked Hong Kong and mainland dates and IP addresses over a four year period. According to Snowden:

"The primary issue of public importance to Hong Kong and mainland China should be that the NSA is illegally seizing the communications of tens of millions of individuals without any individualised suspicion of wrongdoing." "They simply steal everything so they can search for any topics of interest." Exposure "demonstrated (America's) hypocrisy and arrogance" on matters regarding cyber warfare.

Resist Istanbul: Or how I got teargassed again and started losing hope that this government will ever stop the violence

Deniz Erkmen

Here we go: I have been attacked; yet again, tear-gassed brutally by my own government. By my government, which is supposed to protect me. By my government which is supposed to work for me. By police officers whose salaries, armors, batons and ammunition is paid by my friends’, by our families’, and by my taxes.

Make no mistake. We were not exactly protesting when the police started attacking us. Not that it is illegal to protest democratically in Turkey – though you would be hard pressed to believe that seeing how we are treated. We were just a lot of people standing together at the Taksim Square. We were not even chanting. I was talking to two friends standing next to me; an architect and a historian. The square was full with people arriving after work. We were in a good mood; worried, as there have been continuous police interventions during the day after police moved in onto the square, claiming they wanted to take some banners down; but with friends, running into people we know, just chatting; debating if we should move into the park where more friends were hanging out.

That’s when the gas canisters appeared, without any warning, like comets in the sky. I saw the white cloud afar on the other side of the square; I saw some commotion. But by now, we, the protestors of Turkey, are very much familiar with this particular sight and sound; tear gas canisters being fired – so I didn’t start moving immediately.

The National Security Agency: A Global Superpower

Wayne Madsen

Recent revelations that the U.S. National Security Agency is conducting massive meta-data vacuuming of the phone calls and Internet transactions of tens of millions of Americans and, perhaps, billions of people around the world, with little or no effective oversight by President Obama, the U.S. Congress, or the federal court system means that the intelligence agency has become, in its own right, a global superpower.

NSA acts like a virtual «state within a state». The director of NSA, a four-star flag officer, also wears the hat of Commander of the U.S. Cyber Command, the chief cyber-warfare echelon within the Department of Defense. Just as any nation-state, NSA also has alliances with similar signals intelligence and cyber-warfare agencies around the world, including Britain’s Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), Australia’s Defense Signals Directorate (DSD), Communications Security Establishment Canada (CSEC), and the Government Communications Security Board (GCSB) of New Zealand. These English-speaking partners are known as the «Five Eyes» countries and the signals intelligence alliance began after World War II and grew in scope during the Cold War.

NSA also has «third party» intelligence sharing agreements with a number of other signals intelligence agencies, but these smaller agencies are like NSA;’s very own colonial territories. Third party signals intelligence agencies of countries like Germany, Japan, South Korea, Denmark, Norway, Italy, Spain, and Thailand are expected to feed their intelligence «take» into the massive computer databases NSA maintains at its headquarters in Fort Meade, Maryland, but these Third Party entities receive very little intelligence in return. In fact, the Five Eyes «Second party» partners of NSA receive relatively little intelligence from NSA in exchange for the massive amounts of intercepted communications they make available to NSA. Even more secretive are NSA’s «Fourth Party» partners, including neutral Sweden, Finland, Austria, and Switzerland and, in what may pose a problem for Snowden, last reportedly in Hong Kong, the People’s Republic of China has been a «Fourth Party» partner of NSA since the early 1980s. NSA maintained two eavesdropping stations in western China directed against the nuclear testing facilities of the Soviet Union and then Russia.

Snowden defends actions as Obama administration pushes for prosecution of whistleblower

Thomas Gaist

The accumulation of vast amounts of data will be used against any opposition that emerges to the policies of the American ruling class.

Edward Snowden, the former intelligence employee, is facing extradition and prosecution by the US government for his actions in exposing the National Security Agency's massive police-state surveillance system.

In an interview with the South China Morning Post, Snowden asserted that the US government has been “trying to bully” Hong Kong into extraditing him.

“I am not here to hide from justice,” he said from an undisclosed location in Hong Kong. “I am here to reveal criminality.” Snowden left the hotel he was previously staying in out of concern that he would be targeted by US intelligence. “The US government will do anything to prevent me from getting this into the public eye, which is why they are pushing so hard for extradition,” he told the Post.

In testimony before a House committee on Thursday, FBI Director Robert Mueller said that “all necessary steps” are being taking to prosecute Edward Snowden. “As to the individual who has admitted to making these disclosures, he is the subject of an ongoing criminal investigation,” Mueller said.

ABC News reported Thursday that US officials now consider Snowden’s case a “foreign espionage matter” due to supposed concerns that he “may be attempting to defect to China with a trove of America’s most sensitive secrets.”

Iranians Vote

Stephen Lendman

Post-election, expect stepped-up anti-Iranian post-mortems. Congratulating the winner won't be forthcoming. Nor will acknowledging his legitimacy. It's standard US practice.

On June 14, Iranians began voting. They'll choose their 11th president. By law, incumbent Mahmoud Ahmadinejad can't compete. He's limited to two terms. He's been president since August 2005.

Six candidates are running. Two of the original eight withdrew. They did so days earlier. Gholam-Ali Haddad-Adel and Mohammad Reza Aref chose not to run. A previous article profiled participating candidates. If none win a majority, a June 21 runoff follows. On the same day, voters are choosing local city and village officials. Thousands of aspirants registered to participate. In 2012, parliamentary elections were held.

Iran's an Islamic Republic. Its elections are open, free and fair. They shame America's sham process. (More on that below.) The Guardian Council vets candidates. At issue is protecting Iran's Islamic character. It's also to preserve its sovereignty. Preventing imperial interests from gaining control is key.

See you on the dark side

Pepe Escobar

From now on, it's just a matter of carefully, gradually guiding US public opinion to fully "normalize" TIA.

Let's talk about PRISM. And let's see some implications of the Edward Snowden-leaked National Security Agency (NSA) Power Point presentation for Total Cyber-Domination.

What's in a name? A prism breaks light into a spectrum of color. PRISM, as expressed in its Dark Side of the Moon-ish logo, is no less than a graphic expression of the ultimate Pentagon/neo-con wet dream; the Full Spectrum Dominance doctrine.

The NSA - also known as No Such Agency - is part of the Pentagon.

Full Spectrum Dominance was conceptualized in the Pentagon's 2002 Joint Vision 2020. [1] It's the Pentagon/NSA blueprint for the foreseeable future; in trademark Pentagonese, it identifies "four capabilities - "dominant maneuver, precision engagement, focused logistics and full-dimensional protection".

In sum: Total Information Awareness (TIA).

US congressman calls for prosecution of journalist over NSA leak

Thomas Gaist

The Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald (Salon.com)

Representative Peter King of New York said late Tuesday that he supports prosecution of journalist Glenn Greenwald who published material leaked last week by Edward Snowden. The leaks exposed two secret and unconstitutional programs run by the Pentagon-based National Security Agency that collect the electronic communications of tens of millions of Americans and hundreds of millions more around the world.

King, a Republican, said in an interview with CNN's Anderson Cooper: “If they [journalists publishing leaked material] willingly knew that this was classified information, I think actions should be taken, especially on something of this magnitude.” Asked directly whether he would support punishment of journalists, King replied, “The answer is yes, to your question.”

On Wednesday, King was asked whether he thought Washington Post reporter Barton Gellman, who has also been in contact with Snowden and has written on the leaks, should be prosecuted. “I’m talking about Greenwald,” King told Fox News, claiming without any foundation that the journalist was threatening to release the names of CIA agents. “The last time that was done in this country, we saw a CIA station chief murdered in Greece.” King added that the leaks released so far are “putting American lives at risk and this is clearly done to hurt Americans.”

By the perverse logic of the state, attempts to reveal to the American people the unconstitutional actions of the government amount to efforts to “hurt Americans.” While King’s remarks bear the fascistic sentiment that has become his hallmark, they are in fact entirely in line with the assault on press freedom that is being spearheaded by the Obama administration.

Obama administration initiates criminal prosecution of NSA whistleblower

Thomas Gaist

National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower Edward Joseph Snowden’s release of classified documents detailing massive government spying has provoked a chorus of threats and denunciations across the US political establishment. The Federal Bureau of Investigation has launched a manhunt to find Snowden, who left his hotel room in Hong Kong out of concern for his safety. The Justice Department has commenced a criminal investigation into the leaks, confirmed spokeswoman Nanda Chitre over the weekend.

In material released to the British Guardian and Washington Post last week, Snowden exposed two secret programs run by the Pentagon-based NSA that collect the telephone records of virtually all Americans and intercept the electronic communications of millions of people all over the world. The revelations have provoked criticism from politicians and the press in Europe and elsewhere, where the global spying operations are seen as a threat to the national interests of US opponents and allies alike.

In the US, for the most part, the sweeping and flagrant violations of the US Constitution’s Bill of Rights have been defended by representatives of both big business parties, who have echoed the claims of President Obama and intelligence officials that the programs are needed to ferret out terrorists. In fact, the targets of these surveillance programs are not terrorists, but workers, young people, students and others deemed by the ruling class to be potential political opponents.

Rather than calls for impeachment proceedings or congressional hearings to investigate the police state surveillance architecture erected by the NSA, what has predominated are demands for retribution against Snowden.

Digital Blackwater rules

Pepe Escobar

The Panopticon was the ultimate surveillance system - a tower surrounded by cells, a pre-Orwellian example of "architecture of oppression". [It] was not originally conceived for the surveillance of a prison, but for a factory crammed with landless peasants on forced labor...

The judgment of Daniel "Pentagon Papers" Ellsberg is definitive; "There has not been in American history a more important leak than Edward Snowden's release of NSA material". And that includes the release of the Pentagon Papers themselves. Here is the 12-minute video by The Guardian where Snowden details his motives.

By now, everything swirling around the US National Security Agency (NSA) points to a black box in a black hole. The black box is the NSA headquarters itself in Fort Meade, Maryland. The black hole is an area that would include the suburbs of Virginia's Fairfax County near the CIA but mostly the intersection of the Baltimore Parkway and Maryland Route 32.

There one finds a business park a mile away from the NSA which Michael Hayden, a former NSA director (1999-2005) told Salon's Tim Shorrock is "the largest concentration of cyber power on the planet". [1] Hayden coined it "Digital Blackwater".

Here is a decent round up of key questions still not answered about the black hole. But when it comes to how a 29-year old IT wizard with little formal education has been able to access a batch of ultra-sensitive secrets of the US intelligence-national security complex, that's a no-brainer; it's all about the gung-ho privatization of spying - referred to by a mountain of euphemisms of the "contractor reliance" kind. In fact the bulk of the hardware and software used by the dizzying network of 16 US intelligence agencies is privatized.

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