Category Archives: Uncategorized

afterthoughts regarding charlottesville

“Blood On Your Hands”: Protesters Blame City Council For Violence In Charlottesville
Tyler Durden, Zero Hedge, Aug 22 2017

Why did you think you could walk in here and it would be business as usual?

That was one of many harshly worded questions and insults lobbed at the Charlottesville city council during a Monday night meeting that was beset by protesters angrily demanding an explanation for what they alleged was the city’s botched response to Aug 11 “Unite the Right” rally. The rally, which revived a national conversation about the line between heritage and hate speech that continues to this day, devolved into violence as white nationalists, who had earlier marched through the University of Virginia’s campus carrying torches, clashed with counter-protesters. The weekend ended in tragedy when one of the young men in attendance rammed his Dodge Charger into a crowd of counter protesters, killing a 32-year-old woman, and injuring dozens of others.

At the council meeting, protesters “shouted down the mayor, “took over city council chambers,” “broke out into furious chants of ‘shame’ and “gave four hours of impassioned testimony.” Their efforts resulted in a small victory: the city authorized a third-party review of the city’s planning and response to the rally, according to the NYT.

2017.08.22charlottesville_0

Of course, there was no shortage of drama. Tracy Saxon, 41, cried:

I’m outraged!I watched my people get beat and murdered! They let Nazis in here have freedom of speech, and they protect them? And we can’t have freedom of speech?

At one point, two people stood on the dais and unfurled a banner with the words “Blood on your hands!” as council members and the mayor left the room. The residents refused to cede control of the room until the authorities promised to release the residents who had been taken away and let people have their say. As the chaos intensified, most of the council members and the mayor briefly left the meeting. The sole council member who stayed behind negotiated with the protesters and agreed to scrap the agenda to instead allow each person the opportunity to speak:

Vice Mayor Wes Bellamy, the only Afro-Pindosi on the council, was the sole ember who remained. He negotiated with residents to restore order in exchange for scrapping the meeting’s regular agenda and giving each person one minute to speak. It took about a half hour for order to be restored, and the meeting stretched for several hours, as speaker after speaker spoke about their anguish over what the community had experienced. Several people wept and said they had been unable to sleep since witnessing violence against their neighbors. ‘I’m not the same person I was that day,’ said Paul Hurdle, who shook as he described the mayhem on Aug 12.

At one point, three protesters were ejected by the police, drawing a chant of “let them go!” from the crowd.

The councilmembers repeatedly pleaded with the protesters for calm, stressing the fact that it had tried to deny a permit for the “Unite the Right” rally, but had been overruled by a federal court. But for whatever reason, the protesters rejected the council’s version of events, which has been documented in the media. Mayor Mike Signor said:

We tried really hard. A federal judge forced us to have that rally downtown.

His account was met with jeers, and the shouting continued. Mr Signer took the brunt of the community’s ire, as many people demanded his resignation. Once the chaos had subsided, the city council voted unanimously to drape statues of Robert E Lee and Stonewall Jackson in black. Maybe if protesters escalate their tactics, at the next meeting the council will simply decide to tear the statues down, resulting in a progression of even more escalating social discontent within a society that according to Ray Dalio has not been so polarized since 1937…

The Story of Charlottesville Was Written in Blood in the Ukraine
Ajamu Baraka, Counterpunch, Aug 17 2017

Screen-Shot-2017-08-16-at-10.30.39-PMPhoto: Sasha Maksymenko

What is the character of racist right-wing politics today? Is it the crazed white supremacist who plows into an anti-fascist demonstration in Charlottesville, or can it also be the assurance by Lindsay Graham that an attack against NK would result in thousands of lives lost, but those lives will be “over there”? What about the recent unanimous resolution by both houses of Congress in support of Israel and criticism of the UN for its alleged anti-Israeli bias? Would that qualify as racist and right-wing, since it appears that the ongoing suffering of the Palestinians is of no concern? And what about the vote by the House of Representatives to go even beyond the obscene proposal of the Trump administration to increase the military budget by $54b and instead add a whopping $74b to the Pentagon budget? What I find interesting about the current discussion around what many are referring to as the emboldening of the radical white supremacist right is how easy it is to mobilize opposition against the crude and overt white supremacists we saw in Charlottesville. So easy, in fact, that it’s really a distraction from the more difficult and dangerous work that needs to be done to confront the real right-wing power brokers. The white supremacy that some of us see as more insidious is not reflected in the simple, stereotypical images of the angry, Nazi-saluting alt-righter or even Donald Trump. Instead, it is the normalized and thus invisible white supremacist ideology inculcated into cultural and educational institutions and the policies that stem from those ideas. That process doesn’t just produce the storm troopers of the armed and crazed radical right but also such covert true believers as Robert Ruben from Goldman Sachs, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Tony Blair and Nancy Pelosi: “decent” individuals who have never questioned for a moment the superiority of Western civilization, who believe completely in the White West’s right and responsibility to determine which nations should have sovereignty and who should be the leaders of “lesser” nations. And who believe that there is no alternative to the wonders of global capitalism even if it means that billions of human beings are consigned permanently to what Fanon called the “zone of non-being.” This is the white supremacy that I am concerned with. And while I recognize the danger of the violent right-wing movement, I am more concerned with the right-wing policies that are being enacted into law and policy by both Demagogs and Thugs at every level of government. More than two years ago I wrote:

The brutal repression and dehumanization witnessed across Europe in the 1930s has not found generalized expression in pindostan and Europe, at least not yet. Nevertheless, large sectors of the pindo and European left appear to be unable to recognize that the pindo/NATO/EU axis that is committed to maintaining the hegemony of Western capital is resulting in dangerous collaborations with rightist forces both inside and outside of governments.

The impetus of that article was to critique the inherent danger of the Obama administration’s cynical manipulation of right-wing elements in Ukraine to overthrow the democratically elected government of Viktor Yanukovych. Not only was it dangerous and predictably disastrous for the Ukrainian people, but because pindo support for a neo-fascist movement in Ukraine took place within a context in which the political right was gaining legitimacy and strength across Europe, the political impact of the right gaining power in Ukraine could not be isolated from the growing power of the right elsewhere. Which meant that the Obama administration’s selfish, short-term objective to undermine Russia in Ukraine had the effect of empowering the right and shifting the balance of forces toward the right throughout Europe. But because Obama was incorrectly seen as a liberal, he was able to avoid most criticism of his policies in Ukraine, in Europe and domestically. In fact, liberals and the left both in pindostan and in Europe generally supported his Ukraine policies. However, playing footsie with right-wing elements in the Ukraine and underestimating the growing power of the right has resulted in powerful and dangerous right-wing movements on both sides of the Atlantic who have effectively exploited endemic white racism and the contradictions of neolib capitalist globalization. The ascendancy of Donald Trump cannot be decontextualized from the racial, class and gender politics of this moment here and abroad. The alt-right that showed up in Charlottesville this past weekend was mimicking the tactics of the front-line neo-fascist soldiers who orchestrated the coup in the Ukraine, yet everyone is saying this is a result of Trump. The objective fact is that pindostan has become a dangerous right-wing society as a result of a steady shift to the right over the past four decades. The idea that Trump’s election somehow “created” the right cannot be taken seriously and cannot be reduced to the crude expressions of the alt-right.

The structures of white power, that is the structures and institutions that provide the material base for Euro-American white supremacy and its ideological reproduction, should be the focus of radical opposition. But the capitalist order and its institutions, such as the WTO, the IMF, the World Bank, and global Westernized higher education that serves as the material basis for hegemonic white supremacist power, escape critical scrutiny because popular attention is directed against a David Duke and a Donald Trump. Trump and the alt-right have become useful diversions for white supremacist liberals and leftists who would rather fight against those superficial caricatures of racism than engage in more difficult ideological work involving real self-sacrifice, purging themselves of all racial sentimentality associated with the mythology of the place of white people, white civilization and whiteness in the world in order to pursue a course for justice that will result in the loss of white material privilege. Looking at white supremacy from this wider-angle lens, it is clear that support for the Israeli state, war on NK, mass black and brown incarceration, a grotesque military budget, urban gentrification, the subversion of Venezuela, the state war on black and brown people of all genders and the war on reproductive rights are among the many manifestations of an entrenched right-wing ideology that cannot be conveniently and opportunistically reduced to Trump and the Thugs. And when we understand that white supremacy is not just what is in someone’s head, but is also a global structure with ongoing, devastating impacts on the people of the world, we will understand better why some of us have said that in order for the world to live, the 525-year-old white supremacist Pan-European, colonial/capitalist patriarchy must die. Your choice will be clear: either you join us as gravediggers or you surrender to class and racial privilege and join the cross-class white united front. The alt-right is waiting, and they are taking recruits from the left who are tired of “identity politics.”

oh radar, up yours

Back to Back Drone Crashes In Turkey
Tyler Durden, Zero Hedge, Aug 22 2017

Two pindo MQ-1 Predator drones have crashed in Turkey within four days, possibly cutting the operational fleet of drones at NATO’s main Turkish base down to half. This comes at a moment when the future of drone operations in the regions remain in question due to heightened political tensions with the Erdogan government and the uncertain future of the war in Syria. On Monday, Incirlik AFB released a statement confirming the crash of the drone in southeast Turkey at around 11:50 am, with no further details given. Incirlik had confirmed an earlier Predator drone crash just last Thursday (8/17) near the air base. Last week’s statement quoted the commander of the 39th Air Base Wing as saying:

At this time the safety of our host nation civilians and the recovery and security of our asset is paramount. Our airmen train continuously to respond to incidents such as this, and we are working closely with our host nation partners to ensure this is resolved without conflict.

Both incidents, which are being described in official statements as accidents, are currently under investigation. While no fatalities or injuries have been reported in connection with either crash, the 39th issued a notice to Turkish residents indicating that any possible property loss or damage claims could be submitted for potential reimbursement. Photos of the second crash quickly emerged on social media and appear to show a downed drone in a private cornfield. After the formal withdrawal of pindo grunts from Iraq in 2011, the USAF negotiated the transfer of one combat air patrol unit (or PAC) of Predators to Incirlik. A PAC consists of a total of four drones, which theoretically allows for constant 24 hour aerial operations within a drone unit (one aircraft over the target area, one preparing to take over operations, one returning to refuel, and one in reserve). Though it’s unknown if the USAF later added additional units, a DoD internal briefing from 2013 indicates that the original MoU between Pindostan and Turkey to allow a single drone unit transfer took five months to negotiate.

us drone crash turkey2013 DoD slide on the original deployment of Predators to Incirlik.

Assuming there was a single PAC in continued operation at Incirlik, this means the recent back to back crashes in southern Turkey have, at least temporarily, reduced the fleet by half. This comes at sensitive time for Pindostan, which desires to maintain a drone presence at the strategically located Turkish host base. The USAF has further already planned to phase out the Predator drones, which are set to be completely replaced by the larger MQ-9 Reapers by 2018. But it’s the rocky and worsening pindo-Turkish relationship which may ultimately deal a death blow for future drone operations out of Turkey, due to the heightened diplomatic stand-off over official pindo support for the Kurdish YPG in Syria. Last May, pindostan rebuffed repeated Turkish requests not to move forward with arming the YPG, something widely seen as pushing Turkey into closer cooperation with Russia. The following month pindo boxtops announced plans to charge members of Pres Erdogan’s security service after they were filmed attacking protesters outside of the Turkish embassy in Faschingstein, further harming diplomatic relations. But perhaps the greatest outrage came in July, when Turkish state media leaked the locations of pindo bases in Syria, putting pindo SOF and local partners on the ground at risk. A prominent pindo analyst described the incident as “a Fuck you” which threatened to permanently destroy pindo-Turkish cooperation in the Middle East. Furthermore, among the general Turkish public, anti-Pindoism has long been on the rise over the past years, and drones falling from the sky over inhabited areas will not make things any better. With Daesh now in retreat, and with both the Iraqi and Syrian governments looking increasingly confident in terms of regaining their sovereign territory, it is unclear what purpose drones in Turkey will serve other than to prop up the SDF in Syria. This is something Turkey already sees as intolerable. The latest drone crashes could signal the beginning of the end for such operations at Incirlik.

same old, same old, bollocks

Lindsey Graham Says Those Who Oppose Trump’s Surge Will Own ‘Next 9/11’
Dr Fly, iBankCoin, Aug 22 2017

Why was this man so happy last night? Anytime war or potential for war is announced, Graham jumps on the teevee to ejaculate his exuberance for the President’s decisions. On the contrary, whenever the President isn’t towing the ‘establishment’ line, he’s very very stern and critical. Am I missing something here or is this man insane? In summary, if you vote against sending more pindos into a meat grinder of nothingness in Afghanistan, you will own the next 9/11.

Farid Zakaria: ‘Where Is Steve Bannon When You Need Him?’
Pam Key, Breitbart News, Aug 21 2017

Monday night on “CNN Tonight,” while analyzing Pres Trump‘s new AfPak strategy calling for a troop increase, network host Farid Zakaria asked where was Steve Bannon “when you need him?” Partial transcript as follows:

Q: You think his approach was right? You think it’s the only viable approach?
A: No, I think this was a moment, This was a real lost opportunity. I actually feel like, where is Steve Bannon when you need him? This was an opportunity to really have a rethink, to sit back and ask fundamentally what can we do? Wes Clark I think was closest to the truth when he said the fundamental challenge is actually diplomatic. You know, in any one of these wars, when you’re the country that’s 8,000 miles away, the locals know one day you’re going to go home, so the question is, how do you construct some kind of political settlement that will last when you leave? That means getting the Pakistanis involved, the Indians involved, but also the Russians, also the Iranians, who we don’t talk to. Unless they’re all buying in … Right now you have a situation where none of them are buying into the pindo war, they’re all undermining it in various ways, except for the Indians really, and we’re surprised it’s not working. We don’t have any really local traction. What you need, it seems to me, is a regional diplomatic effort, not 4,000 more troops. What will 4,000 pindo grunts do that 140,000 couldn’t do five years ago?

Update (Aug 22 2017): Trump announced exactly what we predicted below. The military dictated the plan to him just like it did to Obama. Here is the transcript of Trump’s speech. It is no different from the one Obama gave in 2009: undefined aims, undefined troop numbers, undefined time limits, bashing Pakistan (which will bash back) and no new ideas at all. As long as pindostan does not pull out, the war will continue without any end in sight:

Afghanistan: Trump To Announce Four More One-Year Wars
Moon of Alabama, Aug 21 2017

This evening Trump will announce a new “path forward” in the occupation of Afghanistan. According to the usual leaks, it will be very same path that pindostan has taken for 16 years. Several thousand grunts from pindostan and various NATO countries will try to train the Afghan army (in vain). SOF and CIA goons will raid this or that family compound on someone’s say-so. Bombs will be dropped on whatever is considered a target. Trump will announce that 1,000 or so troops will be added to the current contingent. About 15,000 foreign troops will be in Afghanistan. About three contractors per each soldier will be additionally deployed. Trump knows that this “path forward” is nonsense that leads nowhere, that the best option for all foreign troops in Afghanistan is to simply leave:

But neither the military nor the CIA nor the local Afghan government will let pindostan leave. Fearmongering is abounding: “What happens if Afghanistan becomes a hotbed for international terrorists?” But few if any international terrorist incidents in the “west” were ever organized in Afghanistan. In all recent incidents, the culprits were locals. For the military it is all about optics. The generals do not want to concede that they lost another war. The CIA wants to keep its militarized forces and drones, which it justifies through its engagement in Afghanistan. The drug production in Afghanistan, which pindostan never really tried to suppress, is rumored to finance “black” CIA operations just like it did during the Vietnam war and throughout various South American conflicts. The members of the Afghan government all live off pindo largesse. The war in Afghanistan is a racket paid for with the lives of countless Afghans and pindo taxpayer money. Now tightly under control of neocon-leaning generals, Trump had little chance to make a different decision. He had asked his team for alternatives but none were given to him. One official said (meaning that Trump told McMaster):

He told him to go back to the drawing board, but he just kept coming back with the same thing.

Steve Bannon promoted an idea of Eric Prince, a shady provider of international mercenaries: Afghanistan would be given to a private for-profit entity comparable to the British East India Company, which with its own large army robbed India of all possible valuables and nearly became a state of its own. But Prince and Bannon forgot to tell the end of that company’s story. It came down after a large mutiny in India defeated its armed forces and had to be bailed out by the government. The end-state of an East-India-Company-like entity in Afghanistan would the same as it is now. Then there is the fairy tale of the mineral rich Afghanistan. $1 trillion of iron, copper, rare metals and other nice stuff could be picked out of the ground. But in reality the costs of picking minerals in Afghanistan is prohibitive, for various reasons. The Bannon/Prince plan was lunatic, but it was at least somewhat different than the never-changing ideas of the military. Apparently, Mad Dog Mattis has been using this line at meetings:

Mr President, we haven’t fought a 16-year war so much as we have fought a one-year war 16 times.

That line has already been used five years ago to describe the war on Afghanistan. It originally described the 10-year war in Vietnam. Mattis did not explain why or how that repetitive one-year rhythm would now change. A “new” part of the plan is to put pressure on Pakistan to stop the financing and supplying of Taliban groups. That is not in Pakistan’s interest, and is not going to happen. The Trump administration wants to hold back the yearly cash payment to the Pakistani military. This has been tried before and the Pakistani response was to close down the pindo supply route to Afghanistan. An alternative supply route through Russia had been developed but has now been shut down becausae of pindo hostilities towards that country. Pindostan can not sustain a deployment in Afghanistan without a sea-land route into the country. Like the government, the Afghan army is utterly corrupt and filled with people who do not want to engage in fighting. More “training” will not change that. The pindo proxy government is limited to a few larger cities. It claims to control many districts, but its forces are often constricted to central compounds while the Taliban rule the countryside. In total, the Taliban and associated local warlords hold more than half of the country and continue to gain support. The alleged Daesh derivative in Afghanistan was originally formed out of Pakistani Taliban by the Afghan National Directorate of Security, which is under the control of the CIA:

In Nangarhar, over a year ago, the vanguard of the movement was a group of Pakistani militants who had lived there for years as ‘guests’ of the Afghan government and local people. While initially avoiding attacks on Afghan forces, they made their new allegiances known by attacking the Taleban and taking their territory.

Daesh in Afghanistan, founded as an anti-Taliban force, is just another form of the usual Afghan warlordism. During 16 years, pindostan failed to set a realistic strategic aim for the occupation of Afghanistan. It still has none. Without political aims, the military is deployed in tactical engagements that make no long-lasting difference. Any attempts to negotiate some peace in Afghanistan require extensive engagement with the Taliban, Pakistan, China, Russia and Iran. No one in Faschingstein is willing to commit to that. Trump’s likely decision means that the story of the pindo occupation of Afghanistan will continue throughout the next years exactly as it happened during the last 16 years. The decision, once made, is unlikely to change until the next presidential election. The 16 one-year-wars in Afghanistan will become 20 one-year-wars for no perceivable gain. The only conceivable event that could change the situation is an incident with a large number of pindo military casualties. That could lead to a groundswell of anti-war sentiment which could press Congress into legislating an end of the war. But are the Taliban interested in achieving that?

Trump’s Base Goes Ballistic Over His ‘Unlimited War’
Lachlan Markay, Sam Stein, Daily Beast, Aug 21 2017

President Donald Trump acknowledged on Monday night that the new Afghanistan strategy he unveiled is a reversal of his long-held objection to the very idea of having a Pindosi military presence in the country. But in announcing a ramp-up of Pindo forces with no defined timeline for their departure, Trump tailored and mangled and obscured the policy to such a degree so as to make it both difficult to understand and palatable to his base. At one point, he asserted that his strategy was to have no publicly-stated strategy at all. Trump told a crowd of servicemen at Virginia’s Fort Myer on Monday:

We will not talk about numbers of troops or our plans for further military activities.

Presidents have made abrupt foreign policy reversals before, often breaking with campaign pledges when presented with a new set of geopolitical realities. Trump has called for total Pindo withdrawal from Afghanistan and for handing the country over to an army of mercenaries. His reversal stands out not just for the outright vehemence with which he previously argued that Pindostan needed to put an end to its 16-year-long war, but also because of what it says about his foreign policy at large. In the seven months since taking office, Trump has expanded military operations in Yemen, Syria, Iraq, Somalia, Libya and, now, Afghanistan. And that’s in addition to an escalated nuclear stand-off with NK, so when pitching the notion that the time had come to enlarge Pindostan’s military presence, the president used a variety of different selling-points to reframe the context. This was, he stressed, an agenda based on counter-terrorism principles and devoting Pindosi blood and treasure purely to the country’s first-order military interests. He said:

We are not nation-building again, we are killing terrorists.

It was “Pindostan First” rhetoric plastered atop a military-oriented interventionist policy. And it was done, ostensibly, to ensure that Trump’s base, disillusioned with decades of Thug-led foreign policy adventurism, heard someone who remained skeptical. Alas, many didn’t.

The pushback that came after Trump’s speech was apparent in the process leading up to it as well. Inside the White House, the draw-down and ramp-up camps battled over the president’s plan, in an internal debate that contributed to the departure last week of White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, the West Wing’s most vocal critic of escalation in Afghanistan. Bannon returned to Breitbart News, the prominent right-wing website that has favorably covered Trump for years, and in the run-up to Trump’s speech on Monday evening, as details of the troop surge announcement trickled out, Breitbart’s coverage ranged from skeptical to hostile. One headline “Pindostan First? With Steve Bannon Out, Globalists Push For More War Abroad.” After Trump’s speech concluded, the lead story on Breitbart’s homepage braced readers for “UNLIMITED WAR.” The site later took that headline down.

Screen_Shot_2017-08-21_at_10.54.19_PM_vru292

Bannon, Cernovich, and other elements of Trump’s less interventionist political base hoped for foreign policy more in tune with the president’s pre-White House rhetoric, when he dubbed the war in Afghanistan “a total disaster” and “a complete waste” and repeatedly called on Obama to withdraw completely. Senator Rand Paul, one of the few elected Thugs to echo this hope, was critical of Trump even before he spoke. Paul said in a statement:

The mission in Afghanistan has lost its purpose and I think it is a terrible idea to send any more troops into that war.

In a rare bit of self-reflection, Trump explained that the reason he changed his tune on Afghanistan was precisely because of the weight of his office. “All my life I have heard decisions are much different when you sit behind the desk in the Oval Office,” he said. And he tried to couch the shift by repeatedly invoking the possibility of another attack homeland. Twice, Trump referenced the attacks of 9/11. “A hasty withdrawal would create a vacuum that terrorists, including Daesh and AQ, would instantly fill,” he said. But instead of placating his base, Trump ended up drawing plaudits from an unfamiliar crowd. Senator Marco Rubio, a GOP defense hawk and 2016 campaign rival, defended Trump’s apparent reversal. The president “has made a decision based on information now available to him in office & on advice of wide array of experts,” Rubio wrote on Twitter. Senator John McCain, one of the more pro-interventionist voices in the GOP and someone who has repeatedly butted heads with Trump in recent weeks, called the new policy “a big step in the right direction.” Trump, he added, “is now moving us well beyond the prior administration’s failed strategy of merely postponing defeat.” And then there was Marc Thiessen, one of the more prominent neocons in media and a former speechwriter to Bush 43, a man whose foreign policy record Trump has called an unmitigated disaster. Reacting to Trump’s pledge that withdrawal from Afghanistan be hinged on “conditions on the ground, not arbitrary timetables,” Thiessen wrote:  “How many times did I write that?”

Trump Chooses McMaster Plan, Commits 4,000 More Troops To Afghanistan
zeropointnow, iBankCoin, Aug 21 2017

President Trump has approved a plan to send 4,000 pindo grunts to risk their lives in Afghanistan, fighting Islamic terror and guarding the most valuable opium crop on the planet, which happens to be sitting atop $1 trillion in untapped resources. Where we’ve been for 15 years.

My original instinct was to pull out and, historically, I like following my instincts, but all my life I’ve heard that decisions are much different when you sit behind the desk in the Oval Office, in other words when you’re POTUS. So I studied Afghanistan in great detail and from every conceivable angle. After many meetings, over many months, we held our final meeting last Friday at Camp David, with my Cabinet and generals, to complete our strategy.

But hey, if shit talking Marco Rubio’s happy, Trump’s happy!

Who else is happy? #NeverTrumpers Lindsey Graham and John McCain!

Let’s be fair though. A lot can change in 7 months. For example, one might run for President on a non-interventionist, Pindostan First platform, railing against your globalist opponent and the ‘never ending wars’ they support. Then, after winning said presidency, two major players on your anti-war / Pindostan First platform who convinced a ton of like-minded pindos to vote, Flynn and Bannon, might get railroaded out of the West Wing, along with any other pesky patriots. In their stead, you’d find yourself flanked by Goldman Sachs & Patraeus protege McMaster, and the very liberal Jared and Ivanka. Coincidentally, you might be convinced by those around you, despite your ‘original instinct,’ that sending 4,000 more kids to Afghanistan is a good idea. Trump had three choices:

  1. A full-scale pullout similar to the one that created the vacuum in Iraq when Obama was at the helm,
  2. A troop increase McMaster’s plan, or
  3. Scaling Afghanistan back to a smaller leaner footprint, a move supported in July by Blackwater founder Erik Prince and reportedly Steve Bannon.

Per Breitbart, Prince pointed out:

Right now, pindostan is spending more than when there were five times as many troops in-country. We’re spending more than the entire pindo infrastructure budget in Afghanistan. I think the president is looking for a more Pindostan First focus, and not what amounts to a large wealth transfer to Afghanistan.

So the neocons love this idea. Who doesn’t? Mike Flynn Jr, for starters.

Neither does Ron Paul:

Nor do many of the pundits who convinced countless voters to show up at the polls:

Alas,

1503031199186

Trump gives military green light to escalate Afghanistan war
Patrick Martin, WSWS, Aug 22 2017

Pres Trump announced a major escalation of the war in Afghanistan in a nationally televised speech Monday night, although he gave no details either about the number of additional troops that will be sent or the extent or duration of the military commitment. Trump also made menacing threats against Pakistan, in remarks clearly crafted in close coordination with the top military generals who dominate his administration. While Trump pleaded military necessity as the reason for not disclosing how many grunts will be added to the 8,400 already deployed in Afghanistan, or how long they will remain there, his goal was not to keep these facts secret from the Taliban, who will know soon enough, since they have sympathizers throughout the Afghan government and in every district of the country. Trump is mainly concerned about keeping the extent of the escalation secret from the Pindo sheeple, who he admitted were “weary of war.” Mad Dog Mattis has been authorized since June to send up to another 4,000 grunts to Afghanistan, but the action has been postponed while boxtops conducted what was described as a comprehensive review of Pindo strategy in South Asia. The grunts are expected to move quickly into position now, so that they can participate in an ongoing series of bloody battles across Afghanistan, seeking to blunt the traditional summer offensive by the Taliban. In the past month, five district capitals have fallen to them, and they now control 48 of the 407 districts. Government-controlled districts number barely 100, less than one quarter of the total, while the remainder are contested, in some cases government-run by day and Taliban-run by night.

Aside from a brief reference to 9/11, which was the pretext for the initial pindo invasion and overthrow of the Taliban regime in Kabul, Trump made no attempt to provide an explanation, let alone a justification, for the longest war in pindo history. In fact, the sheer length of the war and the thousands of casualties suffered by pindo forces were one of Trump’s arguments for continuing and expanding the conflict. The first conclusion of the administration’s review of the war was the necessity of “an honorable and enduring outcome worthy of the tremendous sacrifices that have been made, especially the sacrifices of lives.” Death justifies more death. The number of dead and maimed among the Afghan population is many hundreds of thousands, together with millions of refugees. This colossal toll will only rise rapidly as the scale and ferocity of pindo military operations increases. The war in Afghanistan will take on an even bloodier character under the new policies announced by Trump. “Micromanagement from Faschingstein does not win battles,” he declared, announcing that he is lifting all restraints on military operations, giving on-the-ground commanders the green light to use force as they see fit. This means rescinding restrictions established under the Bush and Obama administrations after well-documented atrocities, such as the bombing of Afghan wedding parties and helicopter gunship attacks that wiped out hospitals and entire villages. Even more reckless and inflammatory is the pindo shift in policy towards Pakistan, which Trump denounced for “continuing to harbor criminals and terrorists.” He complained:

We have been paying Pakistan billions and billions of dollars, at the same time they are housing the same terrorists that we are fighting. But that will have to change. And that will change immediately.

Trump is not speaking merely about the continuation of the illegal drone missile strikes against Taliban and other Afghan militias hiding out in Pashtun tribal areas of western Pakistan. He is threatening an openly hostile stance by pindostan toward to a nuclear-armed country with a population of 190 million people, beginning with a possible cut-off of financial and military aid. Trump menaced Pakistan with the specter of Faschingstein further developing its “strategic partnership with India,” which he called “a key security and economic partner of Pindostan.” Faschingstein has cultivated military-diplomatic ties with India over the past two decades, seeking to transform India into a front-line state in the pindo strategy of surrounding and isolating China. Trump’s speech was a warning to Pakistan that pindostan is prepared to openly side with India against Pakistan in the longstanding conflict between the two nuclear powers in South Asia. Trump also touched briefly on the material interests that underlie the pindo intervention in Afghanistan, saying:

As the PM of Afghanistan (sic) has promised, we are going to participate in economic development to help defray the cost of this war to us.

Behind this vague language is naked imperialist plundering. Trump has recently cited studies showing that Afghanistan possesses at least $3 trillion in natural resources, more than four times the estimated $714b in military spending and reconstruction in the country since 2001. As CNBC reported Saturday:

Trump is seeking a military win in Afghanistan, but pindo efforts there may yet reap financial gains. Afghanistan possesses rare minerals crucial for industrial manufacturing, including copper, gold, uranium and fossil fuels.

Trump’s announcement of a more aggressive stance in Afghanistan is the first major policy decision by the White House since Trump began a reshuffle of senior White House staff, replacing Reince Priebus with Gen Kelly and sacking Stephen Bannon. In discussions within the administration going back at last to the spring, Bannon had opposed sending more troops to Afghanistan, clashing with both Gen Mad Dog Mattis and Gen H R McMaster. He has opposed most military actions in the Middle East as a diversion from the Pindo-China conflict, declaring in an interview last week:

The economic war with China is everything.

The top generals in the Trump administration were also furious over Bannon’s statement last week that there were no viable military options for Pindostan in NK. Following Bannon’s departure, the NYT carried a front page article Monday reporting that discussions over “preemptive war” against NK are “rising in the White House.” The newspaper reported:

General McMaster and other administration officials have challenged the long-held view that there is no real military solution to the NK problem.

Apparently, the administration is seriously considering a first-strike on NK, an action that would lead to the deaths of tens of millions of people. Trump’s speech Monday night, announced only 24 hours in advance, was clearly an effort to cement his relations with the Pentagon brass in the wake of the Bannon firing and the political crisis that erupted after Trump’s declaration of sympathy for the neo-Nazis who rioted Aug 11 in Charlottesville, Virginia, leading to death of one anti-Nazi protester. The speech began with a lengthy declaration by Trump that there was no place for bigotry or racism within the military. The language was taken straight from the declarations of members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who all issued statements after Charlottesville deploring racists and white supremacists and presenting the military as a model of unity across race and gender lines. Trump’s speechwriter combined the disavowal of racial hatred with a paean to the armed services as the model for pindo society as a whole. Using language that would not be out of place in a military dictatorship, Trump said:

In the men and women of the military, our country has produced a special class of heroes whose selflessness, courage and resolve is unmatched in human history.

Throughout the Trump administration, and in the aftermath of the events in Charlottesville, the Demagogs have attempted to subordinate and redirect all opposition to Trump behind the military and intelligence agencies, hailing figures like Kelly and Mattis for providing “stability” to the administration. The announcement of a new stage in the bloody war in Afghanistan is the fruit of their efforts.

carol rosenberg is the stenographer from the miami herald who goes to gitmo and takes dictation from the torturers

Trump’s Pentagon wants to spend almost $500m on Gitmo construction
Carol Rosenberg, Miami Herald.com, Aug 20 2017

migrantops

Behind the scenes, the Pentagon is planning for nearly a half billion dollars in new construction during the Trump administration, including a Navy request to build a $250m five-bed hospital here that has been singled out for study by a Senate committee. Despite Pres Trump’s campaign promise to reduce costs at the remote Navy base, the Pentagon’s appetite to spend at this outpost of about 5,500 residents and 41 wartime prisoners continues unsated. In two other major projects, Congress is poised to give the Army $124m to build a new barracks for 848 prison troops to be ready four years from now. And on a different corner of the base, the Pentagon is soliciting bids of up to $100m to build a skeletal structure for a 13,000-migrant tent city and housing for 5,000 pindo grunts. But it was the hospital plan that prompted the Thug-led Senate Armed Services Committee to ask Mad Dog Mattis to conduct an analysis of “remote locations with high family support costs,” noting the “proposed $250m replacement hospital at Guantánamo Bay would cost $50m per bed.” The Senate tasked Mattis to undertake a “comprehensive study” that essentially asks the Pentagon to take a hard look at the costs of bringing families to distant, remote places like Guantánamo Bay. The Pentagon proposes to build 52 family homes at a cost of $1.3m each on the Kwajalein atoll in the South Pacific Marshall Islands. The Senate called small-post so-called unaccompanied tours costly, “which is a primary reason why locations such as Diego Garcia are unaccompanied.” It cited as an example the “significantly higher” costs of “school construction.” At Guantánamo, a Miami-based Cuban-American construction firm is building a new pre-kindergarten through Grade 12 school for up to 275 students with imported labor, materials and equipment for a whopping $66m. It’s all part of the mix-and-match nature of life on the 45 sq m base. Sailors who come on long-term tours of duty bring their families and move into suburban-style tract housing, while the prison personnel who come for about nine months are housed in townhouses and containerized housing units (CHUS) for which the Army pays rent to the Navy. The base’s workforce of about 2,200 Jamaicans and Filipinos, meantime, live in old barracks and separate trailer camps. The Defense Health Agency said in a statement that it wants to replace the many times renovated, current 12-bed hospital with one that can better withstand earthquake tremors rattling the region. The statement said:

The facility has a significant risk of collapse in a major seismic event due to the lack of seismic design features.

It was built in 1956 and needs upgrades, to continue “providing comprehensive, ambulatory and specified specialty care services” to 3,200 of the 5,500 or so people on base who are covered by TriCare, the Pentagon’s health system. Troops in need of specialized care are flown to pindostan. Jamaican and Filipino guest workers are entitled to emergency services but are not explicitly entitled to Navy healthcare. A base Subway restaurant worker who was discovered to have an active tuberculosis case was quarantined there. Hospital staff also sometimes provide care to the 41 prisoners and the Detention Center’s 1,500 troops, who have their own clinic. A new $8.4m clinic for the captives is under construction, as is a new $12.4m dining room for prison staff. The proposed $124m barracks would consolidate the grunts into one or two large dormitories near the base church and McDonald’s, far from the Detention Center Zone where the prisoners are kept. Trump’s chief of staff, Gen Kelly, had championed the replacement for the CHUs when he was in charge of SOUTHCOM, but the Obama administration repeatedly rejected the idea as an unnecessary investment in dwindling detention operations it sought to close. Now DoD under Trump has blessed the request and committees in both chambers of Congress have supported it. A document obtained by the Herald shows the barracks would be ready in 2021, the GWOT Detention Center’s 20th year, if Congress funds it soon.

The proposed up-to-$100m migrant camp project is a bit mysterious. In 2007, the Bush 43 administration invested $17m in preparing empty fields on the leeward side of the base, not far from Gitmo’s lone functioning airfield, for a series of pop-up tent cities capable of housing 30,000 migrants. A northern Florida contractor, Islands Mechanical, leveled fields, built cement block bathhouses and set up sewage treatment capacity. The Navy spent another $6m on a firm to scavenge the area for unexploded ordinance from abandoned firing ranges nearby. Now the Navy is soliciting bids for work on the same site to include demolition of certain structures, addition of concrete slabs for field kitchens, dumpsters and a new headquarters building. A PA system atop utility poles is also to be added for a population of up to 13,000 migrants and a potential staff of 5,000 guards. The migrants, according to design plans released with the $25m to $100m project solicitation, are to be housed in five pop-up tent cities and a 900-person medical unit. SOUTHCOM spox said the site would be accessible to people with disabilities and have a “minimum life of 50 years.” The Navy said it was handling the bid process for SOUTHCOM, but could not explain why, if Congress appropriated $33m for the project in its FY 2017 budget, the solicitation exceeded funding by $67m. Moreover spox for the Navy, SOUTHCOM and the DHS were unable to say why the military had concluded it needed to bring in and house 5,000 guards and other staff at the base to run an encampment housing 13,000 people. A surge of that size would more than quadruple the population on base. The Army holds regular training exercises there, spending millions of dollars to rehearse a mock migration crisis. This year, it flew in 400 troops plus DHS and State Dept officials, and housed them around the base for the drill, which was closed to press coverage. DHS spox said by email:

ICE was not directly involved in this contract. ICE does not have any plans to use this facility for any new/additional detention.

Separately, the DoD’s Information Technology division disclosed in April that it plans to have a Texas firm called Xtera Inc build a Guantánamo-Puerto Rico fiberoptic link to complement its link from Florida. The first leg was funded at $40m. The Defense Information Systems Agency said in a statement that an undisclosed amount of money to pay for the spur was included in the Army’s 2015 Procurement Funds budget, and that a contract must be awarded by Sep 30, or the undisclosed sum available to build it will expire.

Guantanamo Bay Naval Base (Gitmo) Documentary

ATMO productions, approx 100 minutes.

In the wake of 9/11, pindostan opened a prison camp at Guantanamo Bay. The hundreds of prisoners believed to be detained there are not afforded prisoner of war status according to the Geneva Convention. They are labelled unlawful combatants, held indefinitely with no right to a lawyer or a trial. This documentary looks at the link between Guantanamo Bay and the torture methods used in Iraq, and the roots of how pindo forces tackle the task of retrieving information from the detainees. Ex-detainee Mehdi from Sweden breaks his vow of silence and talks about his time at Cuba. Interviews with senior officers within the Cuban base. An ex-officer from within the Iraqi prisons speaks of how she was misled on treatment of prisoners and how direct orders from the top were given authorising torture methods. She says:

You really need to treat them like dogs, or else if you treat them any better then that you have effectively lost control of the interrogation.

marxists are usually reluctant to address the financial sector at all, for fear of arousing antisemitism

Behind the political warfare in Pindostan:
Rising fears of financial collapse, social unrest

Nick Beams, WSWS, Aug 22 2017

There are growing concerns in pindosi and global financial circles that the rise in the pindo stock market that accelerated with the election of Donald Trump is heading for a major downturn. These concerns shed a revealing light on some of the underlying forces driving the virtual civil war in the pindo political establishment. The growing view among Wall Street speculators and corporate executives is that the “Trump trade” which sent the Dow Jones and other market indexes to record highs, has run its course, with the president increasingly becoming an economic liability. The tipping-point in business sentiment came in the wake of the conflict over the Charlottesville Nazi rampage (sic – RB). Trump’s remarks defending neo-Nazis were seen as undermining the interests of pindo imperialism internationally and threatening social and political instability at home. However, concerns over the instability caused by Trump reflect deeper fears. The pindo ruling class confronts problems that extend far beyond the current occupant of the White House. In a comment published yesterday, Ray Dalio, the head of Bridgewater, the world’s largest hedge fund, said that politics was now set to “probably play a greater role than we have experienced before in a manner that is broadly similar to 1937.” Whether pindostan was able to overcome political conflicts would have a greater effect on the economy than “classic monetary and fiscal policies.” The reference to 1937 is significant. The first half of that year saw a major downturn in the pindo economy. The decline took place at an even faster rate than in 1932, in the midst of the Great Depression. The year also saw the eruption of the class struggle in the auto and steel industries. Dalio wrote that the economic and social divisions in pindostan are similar to the revolutionary upheavals of this previous period. He added that he could not say how bad it would get, but he was not encouraged. He wrote

During such times conflicts (both internal and external) increase, populism emerges, democracies are threatened and wars can occur. … Conflicts have now intensified to the point that fighting to the death is probably more likely than reconciliation.

Almost 170 years ago, in his work The Class Struggles in France, Marx noted that the eruption of the class struggle has a major impact on the financial system because it calls into question confidence in the very viability of the economic system over which the ruling class presides. In his comment, Dalio wrote:

When one looks at average figures, one might conclude that the pindo economy is doing just fine, yet when one looks at the numbers that comprise those averages, it’s clear that some are doing extraordinarily well and others are doing terribly, with gaps in wealth and income being the greatest since the 1930s.

Dalio and others couch references to the growing social and political divide in terms of “populism,” but their real fear is the emergence of overt class conflict. He wrote:

The majority of pindosis appear to be strongly and intransigently in disagreement about our leadership and the direction of our country. (They are) more inclined to fight for what they believe in than to try to figure out how to get beyond their disagreements to work productively based on shared principles.

In other words, the nostrums of the “pindo dream” and pindostan as the “land of economic opportunity,” which functioned historically as a kind of political glue, have disintegrated. What terrifies the ruling class is that the working class will intervene, under conditions in which all signs point to a collapse of the financial bubble created by the world’s central banks since the financial crisis of 2008. The complete disintegration of financial markets nine years ago was only prevented by the injection of trillions of dollars into the global financial system. The pindo federal reserve banks alone poured in more than $4 trillion. But the chief effect of these measures has not been to stimulate a significant recovery in the “real” economy, but to facilitate a financial market boom. Investment rates in the pindo and other major economies remain at historically low levels. The latest expression of the speculative mania is the rise of the crypto currency Bitcoin. After taking more than 3,000 days to reach a level of $2k, the currency which is used in Internet trading went from $2k to more than $4k in just 85 days. The overall market valuation of Bitcoins has expanded to $140b as major investors including Goldman Sachs move in. This is only one expression of bubbles that have developed in virtually every financial asset. With the provision of ultra-cheap money by the Fed and other central banks, one of the chief mechanisms by which companies have been able to maintain share values is by using borrowed funds to organise share buybacks. But this process is reaching its limit, as already over-leveraged companies cannot borrow more to sustain their share values. As the Financial Times noted in a comment yesterday:

Based on longer-term historical valuations, pindo stocks appear more expensive than at any time bar the months before the great crash of 1929 and the bursting of the dotcom bubble in 2000.

Under what were once considered to be normal circumstances, money would move into bond markets to take advantage of higher rates of return. However, bond markets are also in a bubble, trading at historically highs, with interest rates (which move in an inverse relationship to the price) at record lows. In 2008, the pindo ruling class responded to the financial collapse through political and economic mechanisms. On the one hand, they installed Obama to the presidency with the support of the trade union bureaucracy and the various organisations of the privileged middle class, who hailed his election as a “transformative” moment: the “audacity of hope” and “change you can believe in.” On the other, they undertook the greatest injection of money into the financial system seen in economic history, to finance an orgy of speculation and organize a massive transfer of wealth from the working class to the rich. Far from resolving the contradictions, these measures have reproduced them at a higher level. While sections of the ruling class are terrified of the growth of class conflict, they can propose no measures to address the conditions that are leading inexorably toward social explosions. While Trump has pursued a policy of developing an extra-parliamentary movement of the extreme right, his critics within the ruling class are working to reorganize his administration to place it even more firmly under the direction of the military and the financial elite.

oy vay

Mnuchin’s Trophy Wife Blasted After Instagram Spat Goes Viral
Tyler Durden, Zero Hedge, Aug 22 2017

-1x-1 (6)

Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin’s 36-year-old (he’s 52 btw) trophy wife Louise Linton has landed herself in a bit of hot water this morning after an epic social media rant against a taxpayer who took issue with one of her Instagram posts. Apparently, @jennimiller29 didn’t appreciate Linton hastagging her entire expensive wardrobe (including #rolandmouret, #tomford, #hermesscarf, and #valnetinorockstudheels) while traveling on a taxpayer-funded private plane, during her husband’s trip to “check” if the gold at Fort Knox is still there, which prompted the following snarky comment:

And while most folks have learned to simply ignore the social media trolls, Linton apparently has not, which is great news for everyone else, because it prompted the following epic rant in reply:

Others quickly chimed in. Following her taxpayer-funded day trip to Kentucky, Matt McDermott, a pollster and Associate Director at Whitman Insight Strategies, joked:

Quite the populist hashtags on Louise Linton’s Instagram (Mnuchin’s wife).

nintchdbpict000302289828_0

One Twitter user wrote:

Curiously this Instagram post is no longer available. Fucking hedge funders

Another said:

Louise Linton is a hideous person, growing fat off of our tax dollars.

gettyimages-632209368

At one point during the evening, someone even went so far as to change Linton’s Wikipedia page to reflect her IG comment. The page read as of 10:30 p.m:

Never forget she posted this on Instagram.

Alas, in the end, it seems that only the President is permitted to post outlandish social media rants as Linton’s post has since been deleted and her account turned private. Finally, since we know this is the only reason you clicked on this post anyway … here you go:

2017.08.21 - LintonLink for Linton’s Maxim photoshoot

Goldman’s CEO Declares War on Trump, Via Twitter
Dr Fly, iBankCoin, Aug 21 2017

This wasn’t uncommon during the Obama era, where CEOs like Steve Wynn would regularly defecate all over his Presidency. Back then the country was scared that Obama was a secret Muslim agent, sent from Kenya in tow with a ‘fake as fuck’ birth certificate, hellbent on destroying Pindostan. Today, we merely have to deal with a mentally addled orange gorilla who wants nuclear war. Goldman’s Lloyd Blankfein boldly takes a passive-aggressive step towards full revolt at House Goldman. Take notice.

joe scarborough tries to figure it out

Morning Joe Panel Melts Down After July Fundraiser Data Shows the RNC is Crushing the DNC
Dr Fly, iBankCoin, Aug 21 2017 

The Morning Joe staff have been energetically suggesting the Trump presidency would mark an end to the Thug Party as we know it. Just before the recent elections, which demonstrated widespread support for the GOP, former Thug Joe Scarborough predicted widespread losses for the party of Lincoln.

joe 

After the exact opposite occurred, Joe took to the TV in shock, hemming and hawing about how Pindostan could still vote for the party of Lincoln, in spite of Trump.

Morning-Joe-Ossoff-election-loss-e1498047428305-620x435 

Today, July fundraising data showed the RNC absolutely crushed the beleaguered DNC, prompting Joe to find religion as to why this is happening. He concluded that ‘identity politics’ was hurting the DNC, which drew the ire of Share Blue, the DNC backed propaganda arm responsible for spamming conservative websites with pro-DNC messages.

July 

Watch the Morning Joe panel lament over the utter and complete failure of the DNC to capitalize on Trump’s White House discord, pointing to the fact that recent polling shows Thug candidates pulling ahead of Demagogs, outraising them by 3 to 1. Joe just doesn’t understand how the DNC keeps losing.

Maybe they can retake the house in 2018 with a completely inept message.

And here was Joe’s twitter screed, lecturing the democrats on how to beat his former party.

Explain how this is happening, democrats?

yikes

Pindo Commanders To Issue “Rare Warning” To NK As Kim Threatens “Merciless Revenge”
Tyler Durden, Zero Hedge, Aug 21 2017

As the Ulji Freedom Guardian joint military drills begin near the Korean Peninsula, Kim Jong Un has threatened “merciless revenge” against the “Pindo Imperialists and SK war maniacs” for ignoring his warnings. NK’s state-run Korean Central News Agency reports that:

The Pindo imperialists and the SK war maniacs launched the Ulji Freedom Guardian joint military drills aimed at a preemptive attack on the DPRK. Despite the repeated warnings of the DPRK, they have kicked off the war in the pretext of resolving “countering” the “provocation by the north.” This is aimed at igniting a nuclear war on the Korean peninsula at any cost. What is more serious is the fact that on the eve of the war exercises, Pindo brass including the PACOM and STRATCOM Commanders flew to the South, contributing far more Pindo grunts from overseas, as well as seven vassal states including Australia and Britain. The Korean peninsula has plunged into a critical phase due to the reckless north-targeted war racket of the war maniacs.

As Bloomberg notes, KCNA further cites an unidentified military spox as saying it would be a misjudgment for Pindostan to think that NK will “sit comfortably without doing anything” during the Pindo-SK joint military drills.

Ongoing drills and visits of Pindo military boxtops to SK create the circumstances for a “mock war” on the Korean peninsula, KCNA says. Pindostan can’t avoid “merciless revenge” by NK. Pindostan should never forget NK is watching its moves closely with< "fingers on triggers, ready to pour a fire shower of penalties at any time."

Additionally, adding further tension, Yonhap reports that three top Pindo military commanders plan to issue a “strong warning message” to NK in a rare joint press availability here later Tuesday, officials said.

PACOM chief Adm Harry Harris, STRATCOM head Gen John Hyten and Missile Defense Agency Director Lt-Gen Samuel Greaves are scheduled to hold a press conference at a local Pindosi Forces Korea (USFK) base. It’s quite unusual for Pindo top brass serving abroad to gather in SK and release public statements together. It apparently reflects Faschingstein’s alertness against North Korea’s rapid development of nuclear bombs and missiles.

Given the fact that the Navy has had two ‘accidental collisions’ with slow-moving vessels in recent months, what are the chances this all ends without incident?

move on nothing to see here etc etc etc

Awan Plot Thickens As NY Democrat Yvette Clarke “Quietly” Wrote-Off $120k Of Missing Tech Equipment
Tyler Durden, Zero Hedge, Aug 21 2017

When we reported last week that Imran Awan and his wife had been indicted by a grand jury on 4 counts, including bank fraud and making false statements related to some home equity loans, we also noted that those charges could simply be placeholders for further developments yet to come. Now, according to a new report from the Daily Caller, the more interesting component of the FBI’s investigation could be tied to precisely why New York Demagog Rep Yvette Clarke quietly agreed in early 2016 to simply write-off $120k in missing electronics tied to the Awans.

A chief of staff for Demagog Rep Yvette Clarke quietly agreed in early 2016 to sign away a $120k missing electronics problem on behalf of two former IT aides now suspected of stealing equipment from Congress, The Daily Caller News Foundation has learned. Clarke’s chief of staff at the time effectively dismissed the loss and prevented it from coming up in future audits by signing a form removing the missing equipment from a House-wide tracking system after one of the Awan brothers alerted the office the equipment was gone. The Pakistani-born brothers are now at the center of an FBI investigation over their IT work with dozens of Congressional offices. The $120k figure amounts to about a tenth of the office’s annual budget, or enough to hire four legislative assistants to handle the concerns of constituents in her New York district. Yet when one of the brothers alerted the office to the massive loss, the chief of staff signed a form that quietly reconciled the missing equipment in the office budget, the official told TheDCNF. Abid Awan remained employed by the office for months after the loss of the equipment was flagged.

If true, of course this new information would seem to support previously reported rumors that the Awans orchestrated a long-running fraud scheme in which their office would purchase equipment in a way that avoided tracking by central House-wide administrators and then sell that equipment for a personal gain while simultaneously defrauding taxpayers of thousands of dollars. Meanwhile, according to the Daily Caller, CDW Government could have been in on the scheme.

They’re suspected of working with an employee of CDW Government Inc, one of the Hill’s largest technology providers, to alter invoices in order to avoid tracking. The result would be that no one outside the office would notice if the equipment disappeared, and investigators think the goal of the scheme was to remove and sell the equipment outside of Congress. CDW spox told the DCNF the company is cooperating with investigators, and has assurance from prosecutors its employees are not targets of the investigation.

Not surprisingly, Clarke’s office apparently felt no need whatsoever to report the $120k worth of missing IT equipment to the authorities. It’s just taxpayer money, after all.

According to the official who talked to the DCNF, Clarke’s chief of staff did not alert authorities to the huge sum of missing money when it was brought to the attention of the office around Feb016. A request to sign away that much lost equipment would have been “way outside any realm of normalcy,” the official said, but the office did not bring it to the attention of authorities until months later when House administrators told the office they were reviewing finances connected to the Awans. The administrators informed the office that September they were independently looking into discrepancies surrounding the Awans, including a review of finances connected to the brothers in all the congressional offices that employed them. The House administrators asked Clarke’s then-chief of staff, Wendy Anderson, whether she had noticed any anomalies, and at that time she alerted them to the $120k write-off, the official told the DCNF.

Of course, the missing $120,000 covers only Clarke’s office. As we’ve noted before, Imran and his relatives worked for more than 40 current House members when they were banned from the House network in February, and have together worked for dozens more in past years so who know just how deep this particular rabbit hole goes. Also makes you wonder what else Debbie Wasserman-Schultz and the Awans might be hiding.  Certainly the decision by Wasserman-Shultz to keep Awan on her taxpayer funded payroll, right up until he was arrested by the FBI while trying to flee the country, is looking increasingly fishy with each passing day.

this guys’s book is published by snoggsworthy, swaine & cormorant

His debut novel, ZONE 23, is published by Snoggsworthy, Swaine & Cormorant – RB

Deputinazification of Pindostan Update
C J Hopkins, Counterpunch, Aug 18 2017

Screen-Shot-2017-08-17-at-9.29.57-PMPhoto: Frankie Leon

So the deputinazification of Pindostan couldn’t be going much better at the moment. In terms of emotionally manipulating people (and especially any heretofore wayward members of the Pindosi “left”) into forming a mindless, hysterical mob and running around like headless chickens branding anyone who didn’t vote for Hillary Clinton a goose-stepping Nazi, this past week has been a huge success. At this point, if you haven’t yet posted an anti-Nazi loyalty oath on Twitter, Facebook, or some other platform, you’re a potential “Nazi sympathizer,” and you don’t want to be one of those, now, do you? No, I didn’t think you did! So, if you haven’t done that, you’d better get on it! Here are few tips to get you started. Your anti-Nazi loyalty oath should include a clearly-worded statement acknowledging that Donald Trump is Hitler, or at least the leader of the tens of hundreds of imbecilic neo-Nazi losers who, according to most of the mainstream media, are on the verge of overthrowing the entire Pindosi ruling establishment. It should also include a threat to unfollow, defriend, and otherwise socially ostracize anyone who hasn’t posted such an oath, or who, despite the Charlottesville Kristallnacht, stubbornly continues thinking critically, or maintains any form of historical awareness, or presents any kind of rational arguments challenging the prevailing Nazi hysteria. It should also include one or more of the following:

  1. If not an outright call for the First Amendment to be repealed, then at least a demand for a ban on “hate speech,” and the removal of every hate-based statue, flag, painting, book, film, song, joke, or other expression of racism, hatred, religious bigotry, misogyny, extremism, general rudeness (and any other forms of speech or expression that you don’t like) from public view. Don’t worry about the ramifications of this ban. It will never, ever, be used against you, or anyone that you agree with, or against any authors or artists that you like. It’ll be a ban on “hate-speech,” after all, and it’s not like that term is completely subjective, or subject to the whims of those in power, or anything like that.
  2. A demand that the already overly-broad definition of “terrorism” now be expanded even further, to include the fascist who drove his car into a crowd of counterprotesters in Charlottesville, killing one and wounding many others. Never mind that this murderous idiot seems to have done this on the spur of the moment (or, if it was a planned attack, that he’s even more of an idiot than he seems, which, judging from his mug shot, is hard to believe). The important thing is to help the Resistance expand the definition of “terrorism” to the point where they can slap it onto anyone. Again, don’t worry about the ramifications. The “terrorist” label will never, ever, be used against groups that you approve of, or innocent people in faraway countries that some future president wants to murder with drones. The Resistance would never, ever, do that. They know who is and who isn’t a terrorist. And if they don’t, they can always check with Obama.
  3. A reference (either veiled or direct) to someone who may be a Nazi-sympathizer. This is crucial in terms of motivating others to post their loyalty oaths, and fostering an atmosphere of paranoia, which is always so helpful at times like this. Surely, you know of someone who has said, tweeted, published, or posted something that could be interpreted as “Nazi-friendly.” Don’t bother with the Trump supporters. The corporate-owned media will take care of them. You want to go after other leftists, specifically leftists who have been reluctant to call Trump Hitler, or a Putinist agent, or who disagree with you about Syria, or, you know, just people who get on your nerves. This is a golden opportunity to pore through their tweets and Facebook posts, find something you can use against them, and then accuse them of harboring Nazi sympathies. Given the current level of hysteria, few people are going to check your facts. This is one you can really have fun with. See how far you can push the paranoia. Make up elaborate conspiracy theories. If you’re not quite sure how to go about that, check NYT or WaPo. They’re masters of that kind of thing.

Your anti-Nazi loyalty oath should definitely not include any of the following:

  1. Any mention of the Ukrainian Nazis that Obama, Clinton, and the rest of the Resistance (before it was the Resistance, of course) helped regime-change the Ukrainian government when it wouldn’t play ball with the EU and NATO. Mentioning the Resistance’s support of these Nazis would only confuse those reading your oath, who might not understand that there are good Nazis and bad Nazis, and who have probably forgotten how the Pindo government smuggled a number of actual Nazis (ie members of the NSDAP) into Pindostan after WW2, or how since the end of that war, Pindostan has mass-murdered countless millions of people all over the planet but, technically, not in a genocidal fashion, so that doesn’t make us the same as Nazis.
  2. Actual membership figures on neo-Nazi and white supremacist groups, because those figures are pathetically small. Doing this would make your loyalty oath (not to mention the whole Nazi hysteria thing, generally) seem, if not paranoid, then at least absurd, or like part of some manufactured effort to whip up support for a ruling class coup by waving Nazis in front of everyone’s faces. This would be extremely counter-productive. Remember, one of the primary goals of the deputinazification program is to convince the public that Richard Spencer and the handful of other insignificant idiots that the corporate media is showering with publicity are about to lead an overwhelming force of tiki-torch-bearing neo-Nazis into the streets of Pindo cities to battle the hyper-militarized police, the national guard, and the military, or some other preposterous scenario like that
  3. Any reference whatsoever to the corporatocracy that runs the country, and that normally decides who can run for president, and which is currently making an example of Trump in order to dissuade any future billionaires from having the audacity to fuck with them. You’ll be better off avoiding this subject entirely, as it only reminds folks how screwed they are, and how the odds are that they’re probably all worked up about something the corporate-owned media wanted to get them all worked up about, neo-Nazis, Russian hackers, nuclear war with NK, Syrian gas attacks, lone wolf terrorists, weapons of mass destruction, or whatever. Take it from someone who’s worked in show business. No one likes being made aware of how they are being manipulated … or provided with a binary set of officially acceptable contextual parameters within which they can think and speak. But don’t worry too much about that binary stuff. There’ll be plenty of time to get into all that after we rid the world of these Nazis, and these racists, and all these Confederate statues. And Trump, of course. That’s the main thing … getting rid of Donald Trump, and getting a Demagog back in office.

Oh, yeah … and the books. We need to look at the books. God knows how many Confederate books are still out there in the public libraries, and in people’s homes, where children can read them. We’ll need to get to the books eventually. In the meantime, focus on Priority One. Go hard on the Nazi hysteria, at least throughout the rest of the weekend, after which they’ll probably need to switch us back to the Russia hysteria, or possibly the NK hysteria, or … damn, see? Here I go with that contextual parameter stuff again. I’ve really got to stop doing that. The last thing I need is to get myself accused of being some kind of Nazi sympathizer, or Confederate apologist, or Russian propagandist, or extremist, or terrorist, or, you know … whatever.