Saturday, September 28, 2013
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
I wrote this before Obama made his concession to common sense, but it is still accurate. I was opposed to unilateral action for a number of reasons:
- One: Syria hasn't attacked the USA. Traditionally the USA has had a rule, and the UN Charter establishes the same guideline, that it doesn't attack a country merely because it may be a threat, but only if it actually attacks us, or according to the imperialist Bush doctrine poses an "imminent threat." For us to move along the imperial route shows that we are now working for the oil interest rather than for ourselves.
- Two: the only legal mechanism for redressing human rights violations is diplomacy or the UN. That is where we put the locus for dealing with human rights, not unilateral action.
- Three: Putin is offering a way out of unilateral action. [Post Script, Obama accepted his offer].
- Four: Putin may be right in that the Al Qaeda types are almost always Salafists in the Saudi Arabian Mold; Al Nusra is universally labeled as Al Qaeda by even it's allies, and there is credible circumstantial and eye witness evidence that they ran a false flag on August 21st; because there are credible reports that Al Nusra acquired chemical weapons through Bandar, threatened to use them, and was setting up to use them. Local rebels tell the story of receiving these weapons and putting them in the same storage bunkers the Syrians attacked when the people died. So a cook-off of chemical weapons is plausible.
- Five: One does not engage in conflict resolution by blowing the other side to smithereens. That only works if one can do a complete genocide. Otherwise the "other side" finds a way to extract revenge.
- Six: Many of these anti-Assad rebels are even more stridently anti-Israel and anti-Christian than Assad is.
- Seven: The Saudis have been playing both sides since the 80's. They fund Salafist anti-Christian, anti-Jewish, anti-Israel and militant propaganda, and reports show they fund Al Qaeda.
- Eight: Bandar is the one who originally trained Al Qaeda when he was working with the CIA against the Russians in Afghanistan during the 80's. Bin Laden was his asset.
I think Obama saw the intelligence, heard all his advisers and their drumbeat for war, and thought twice about the subject. He still insists the Syrians launched those rockets, but that's his intelligence service. And if there are CIA folks or other officials who have more loyalty to Bandar, Big Oil and our Oily Industries, then the USA, they aren't going to confess that to him. Folks have a way of convincing themselves that the truth is whatever they want it to be. That could be me. So here are some facts:
Bandar and the Bandits
Bandar is popular among some CIA types and these Al Nusra rebels. I quoted a Wall Street article:
"Officials inside the Central Intelligence Agency knew that Saudi Arabia was serious about toppling Syrian President Bashar al-Assad when the Saudi king named Prince Bandar bin Sultan al-Saud to lead the effort."
Our CIA loves Bandar, even in the face of circumstantial evidence linking him to Al Qaeda. They know he has "Wasta:"
"They believed that Prince Bandar, a veteran of the diplomatic intrigues of Washington and the Arab world, could deliver what the CIA couldn't: planeloads of money and arms, and, as one U.S. diplomat put it, wasta, Arabic for under-the-table clout."
But Bandar created Al Qaeda, and we don't know if he continued to have relations with Al Qaeda after it attacked the USA on 9/11 but we do know that they got most of their funding from Al Qaeda, and that the Saudis embrace the same ideology. My own suspicion is that Bandar was running Al Qaeda and still is as a proxy war false flag to keep his enemies distracted and portray himself as a hero. The fact that he supports the Chechens and boasted during his negotiations with Putin that he controlled them, indirectly threatening that he could cause them to attack the Russian Olympics coming up. The Chechens have been increasingly radicalized over the year. My suspicion is that he's Al Qaeda and that some of our CIA know this. But it's a secret of course -- to innocent folks living in the USA. Not so much in the rest of the world. The AL Monitor reports:
" As an example, I can give you a guarantee to protect the Winter Olympics in the city of Sochi on the Black Sea next year. The Chechen groups that threaten the security of the games are controlled by us, and they will not move in the Syrian territory’s direction without coordinating with us."
Read more: http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/politics/2013/08/saudi-russia-putin-bandar-meeting-syria-egypt.html
Bandar is great at portraying himself as moderate, while we hear other leaders portray themselves as blood thirsty. But this doesn't mean that is his reality. In Arabia moderate rulers have to pretend to be tough & even genocidal even when they really are more moderate. For example in the 1948 war Abdullah is the one who really saved Israel when he had the only army that could have crushed the country. He really did not want to exterminate Jews or Israel; and he was assassinated for it. And of course it goes the other way too. The Saudis pretend to be moderate while selling Salafism and extremism. To get real Wasta, we need to be more savvy and recognize when we are being had by our own experts, monied interests, or politicians. Likewise our Arab friends need to make some major changes in their own societies so that their own people know the real deal and aren't being sold substitutes. You can't call everyone you don't like "baddies." Christians aren't necessarily blood thirsty Crusaders, and not all Arabs are blood thirsty Jihadis. That doesn't mean one can always trust governors of any country. It's all a matter of interests and working out those interests either for selfish or even violent interests, or for the common good. We have to setup the calculations so it stops being in their interests to both be our "friend" and sponsor Al Qaeda; and for our Arab friends to want to settle with Israelis, and our Israeli friends to settle with the Arabs.
If we can setup some confidence building, educational efforts, and economic exchanges that actually result in schools, infrastructure and social improvement for the folks who actually live there -- then maybe the officers won't have such an interest in keeping their people distracted. But that is not the case anywhere yet -- least of all at home.
Economic interest and Common Interest.
My Internet friend Thomas B. Nielson posted some information that helps put all this talk about gassed children into perspective. The administration appears to be trying to justify something that probably has nothing to do with misuse of chemical weapons and everything to do with geopolitical economic proxy battles between giant petro-chemical companies and their proxy countries. The more I dig into the reality the more it becomes obvious that if they really cared about little children they'd do more to stop Prince Bandar from providing chemical weapons to the rebels, or to lessen the stakes for the Assad regime and their personal survival, but Cruise Missile attacks won't do that. On the contrary that agenda seems to come from Prince Bandar and his faction trying to stop, or gain control of a pipeline.A number of internet sources reference the Kirkut-Banias pipeline. This report from pipelines international on the pipeline tells us:
"The Strategic Pipeline was constructed in 1975, which comprised two parallel 700,000 bbl/d pipelines capable of transporting crude from Kirkuk south to the Arabian Peninsula. In 1976 Iraq ceased pumping oil through the Kirkuk – Banias Pipeline. Oil flow through the pipeline resumed in February 1979 but again ceased following the Iraqi invasion of Iran in September 1980. In March 1981 Iraq once again resumed pumping oil through the pipeline to Syria; however when Syria concluded a deal with Iran to import significant volumes of crude oil, the pipeline was shut down in 1982."
The pipeline was destroyed in part in 2003, but the oil interests in the local region knew that eventually a new pipeline would be needed:
"In late 2010, his government signed a memorandum of understanding with Iraq for the construction of two oil and one gas pipeline to carry gas and oil from Iraq’s Akkas and Kirkuk fields, respectively, to the Syrian port of Banias on the Mediterranean Sea. In July 2011 Iranian officials announced a $10 billion gas pipeline deal between Syria, Iraq and Iran that would transport gas from Iran’s South Pars gas field, the world’s biggest, through Iraq to Syria. Also planned was an extension of the AGP from Aleppo, in Syria, to the southern Turkish city of Kilis that could later link to the proposed Nabucco pipeline linking Turkey to Europe, if that pipeline ever materializes."
"The Kirkuk-Banias pipeline runs from Kirkuk in Northern Iraq, to the Syrian town of Banias, on the Mediterranean Sea between Turkey and Lebanon. Ever since US forces inadvertently destroyed it in 2003, most of the pipeline has been shut down. While there have been plans in the works to make the Iraqi portion of the pipeline functional again, those plans have yet to come to fruition. And Syria has at least 2.5 billion barrels of oil in its fields, making it the next largest Middle Eastern oil producer after Iraq. After ten unproductive years, the oil companies dependent on the Kirkuk-Banias pipeline's output are eager to get the pipeline operational again. The tension over the Syrian oil situation is certainly being felt by wealthy investors in the markets, who are thus dictating US foreign policy."(Reader Supported News article)
And not just US investors, as I've developed, the primary driver for the rebel effort and the anti-Syrian Government rebels has been the Saudis. So US investors and the Oily Sheikhs all have an interest in quickly resolving Syria's conflict. Some of them have an interest in sabotaging it. And some in preserving it. Gibson claims:
"It's easy to see why the oil-dominated US government wants to be involved in Syria's outcome. The Free Syrian Army has since taken control of oil fields near Deir Ezzor, and Kurdish groups have taken control of other oil fields in the Rumeilan region. Many of the numerous atrocities that Assad's government committed against unarmed women and children were in Homs, which is near one of the country's only two oil refineries. Israel, the US's only ally in the Middle East, is illegally occupying the Golan Heights on the Syrian border and extracting their resources. The US wants to get involved in Syria to monopolize its oil assets, while simultaneously beating our competition – Iran, Russia and China – in the race for Syrian black gold.(Reader Supported News article)
And Global Research claims that Syria and Iraq have plans to build a new pipeline that would share that countries oil directly to the Mediterranean. That would directly threaten Russian monopoly over central Asian Oil, and Iran's control of the Straits of Hormuz. Ending the war is clearly in the interest of some investors, while others have an interest in keeping Syria preoccupied.
Apparently the Qataris and Turks are for a new pipeline and the Saudis are against it. Hence the Saudis supporting their Al Nusra assets and the Syrian rebels, while the Qataris are not. This explains a lot of the current line up.Further reading:
Additional Sources for article in addition to digestion from Facebook posts and other sources:
Friday, September 20, 2013
about the evils of overspending amid poverty's reaches.
One after another, they pose for the folks back home.
And then they dine on lobster and lamb
They pontificate and they spew,
while their colleagues eat and chew,
Filmed for campaign commercials they plan to fund,
from moneys taken from schools they plan to defund and throttle.
And they pass the bottles of fine 300$ a bottle,
no cheap soda for them, dining on lobster and lamb
Meanwhile, the lambs await the slaughter,
The children wait for food.
And poor mothers can no longer feed their brood.
At the risk of sounding somewhat rude;
What the hell are these people doing?
Turning the heat up on all of us,
and the people to slaughter, lobster and lamb
Christopehr H. Holte
Tuesday, September 17, 2013
The way we are constituted our Trade Representation is creating an opportunity to corrupt world law for oligarchic rule by creating special courts that can run roughshod over democratic institutions. This is undemocratic in addition to being abusive to everyone but the CEOs and the wealthiest families in the world who support these kinds of laws. We need Trade Representatives who are actually representative of the people and not stooges for mighty corporations. Since I wrote this article in 2013, I've been waiting for a new version of the draft treaty. I still don't have that but I do have what they say will be the new version and the issues really haven't changed as of 3/16/2015. For current status read [http://holtesthoughts.blogspot.com/2015/03/tpp-and-its-assault-on-sovereignty-and.html]
Any of you who feel as strongly as I do, not only about particular trade bills but the way we constitute our various government organelles, should sign the Move On petition to defeat Presidential Fast Track Authority so that the TPP bill will actually have to be debated and so that people will see how the legal provisions of the bill are written for the benefit of the usual suspects in our giant oligarchic monopolistic international corporations, who have representation in our Trade Negotiators while labor, consumers and ordinary citizens don't. The Petition states:
"The White House and the U.S. Trade Representative are urging Congress to abdicate some of its power over approval of trade agreements by renewing "fast track" authority. Fast track would allow the controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership to leapfrog customary legislative protocol and be put to a rapid "up or down" vote without a public hearing, floor debate, or amendments. Forcing Congress to vote on an agreement this complex without adequate time for open hearings, review, and public scrutiny, sets a dangerous precedent. Congress, we urge you: just say NO to fast track!"
Moveon further notes in background:
"For three years, a group of some 600 multinational corporations and trade associations have been quietly negotiating a trade pact IN SECRET that could void American laws that protect workers, jobs, health, and the environment. During negotiations here last summer, news leaked of some of the provisions U.S. trade officials were prepared to approve, and a public outcry derailed the talks. Trade Representative Ron Kirk resigned. Now that Michael Froman has been confirmed as the new U.S. Trade Representative he is pushing to renew "fast track" authority so President Obama can sign the agreement first, and then force a quick vote in Congress without any public scrutiny, floor debate, or revisions."
And it is a secret to the citizens, but not to the massive companies like Exxon, Bayer, etc... who have representation among the Trade Negotiators while labor and citizens don't.
"Rep. Keith Ellison has called TPP "the largest corporate power grab you've never heard of." Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, (who happens to share my name!) is one of just four U.S. Senators who voted against Froman's confirmation this summer. She said of TPP, “I have heard the argument that transparency would undermine the Trade Representative’s policy to complete the trade agreement because public opposition would be significant.” Warren explained, “In other words, if people knew what was going on, they would stop it. This argument is exactly backwards. If transparency would lead to widespread public opposition to a trade agreement, then that trade agreement should not be the policy of the United States.”
Of course we could find out that TPP isn't so bad, or we could find out it is far worse, because it is secret:
"The only TPP language made public was leaked in 2012 and shared by Public Citizen. Since then trade officials have kept a tight lid on the negotiations, only recently allowing members of Congress to view (not copy) the text, which remains "classified." Among the most disturbing revelations in last year's leaked TPP language, that seems to be mirrored in the Atlantic version as well: Foreign companies would have "preferred status" – granting them greater rights within our borders than our own companies enjoy. U.S. companies would have more incentives to offshore jobs, and foreign companies would not be bound by the minimum wage and could sue the U.S. if our health, safety, or environmental regulations interfered with their profits. Jurisdiction over such suits would rest not in the hands of elected officials or judges, but with an international business tribunal. Their decisions, which would be binding upon all member nations, would supersede our own laws – including our Constitution."
Actually the constitution has a provision that says that treaties have equal power of law to the constitution, so Move On is right. This is an attack on our countries sovereignty, and that wouldn't be so bad if the alternative weren't the "Private, Separate Advantage" of the few over the general welfare and Public Good.
Anyway you can read more and sign the petition here:
Saturday, September 14, 2013
Out in the desert, where dessication is the norm.
Down come the rains, and the rivers swell and roar.
A trickle in the mountains, flooding at the foot.
Surging to where streams join, roaring to the desert.
some only flood dry pans, reminding us when they were oceans,
But others roar on down canyons, galloping to the sea.
But Oh the green on those mountains,
after the rainfall passes.
Where life seemed dead and dying,
responding to Gods crying.
how the plants bloom and thrive,
exulting in new growth.
up in the desert mountains,
where you think it never rains.
9/15/2013, inspired by rains in Colorado and New Mexico
Christopher H. Holte
Friday, September 13, 2013
I have to write a review of this book, "The Kings Best Highway" because I'm constantly citing it, sometimes forgetting to give it credit because nearly every word and story in it is engraved in my memory and heart, and it opened my mind to some ideas for how to improve our Federal System by going "back to" the kind of Post Office that Benjamin Franklin and other Founders envisioned.
The Post Office enabled our country in so many ways. And I'm grateful to this book for explaining some of them with wonderful stories about how the Boston/New York Post started out as a link between the Dutch Governor of New York and the British Governor in Boston and grew from there from a messenger route of horseback callers, to eventually our modern post office.
Along the way it tells so many wonderful stories: It tells how Benjamin Franklin indeed was the mastermind of American independence by encouraging Post Masters to buy printing presses and print newspapers. How we built that free press with subsidies so good that people would write letters in the margins of newspapers and mail those because they were cheaper than letters. It tells the story of the "committees of correspondence" that provided an alternative to British tyranny through the Post Office after King George fired Franklin and replaced him with Tories. And it tells the story of the revolution, much of which occurred along the postal routes between Boston and New York. It also includes the work that Lincoln did to defeat the spirit of compromise that had the South using corrupt courts to extend slavery to, and force it on, the North and how he showed that it was a lie that the Constitution gave the government no right to regulate its extension. And how he did this riding the rails, which the post office helped create. The narrative covers so many good stories that I'm not really spoiling reading the book.
For the URL:
Thursday, September 12, 2013
Putin actually makes his case eloquently and much clearer than any of the Pundit interpretations. So I'm going to quote him with a few comments and suggest that people read the New York Times post by him rather than taking my opinion or anybody elses opinion about what he said and meant at face value.
Article is at: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/12/opinion/putin-plea-for-caution-from-russia-on-syria.html?hp&_r=0. I think his opening remarks and everything he says is important to read in context and analyze in context. He starts out:
"MOSCOW — RECENT events surrounding Syria have prompted me to speak directly to the American people and their political leaders. It is important to do so at a time of insufficient communication between our societies."
Both Russia and the US, like China, Britain, Brazil, Argentina, and other large centralized countries, tend to be Insular and think their country is the navel of the world. This leads to an exaggerated sense of our importance, and also to us not really understanding each other. Americans mostly travel either for business or to stations in bases all over the world. We tend to congregate where there are McDonalds and Starbucks. We haven't been interacting with the Russians much lately. Part of that is that both our countries have a complex history together:
"Relations between us have passed through different stages. We stood against each other during the cold war. But we were also allies once, and defeated the Nazis together. The universal international organization — the United Nations — was then established to prevent such devastation from ever happening again."
Putin is reminding us we didn't establish the UN unilaterally, but we did it when we were cooperating with the Russians in fighting the Nazis during World War II. Our right wing would have segued directly from fighting the Nazis to fighting the Russians. General like Patton openly confessed they believed we were fighting the wrong enemy. Some soldiers were deliberately sent to fight in the Far East because their loyalty to the United States vis a vis the Germans was suspect. Other Americans during the WWII were blindly loyal to Communism and Russia. This is not something to be proud of.
"The United Nations’ founders understood that decisions affecting war and peace should happen only by consensus, and with America’s consent the veto by Security Council permanent members was enshrined in the United Nations Charter. The profound wisdom of this has underpinned the stability of international relations for decades."
We've had less than consensus. We've had a series of wars since the UN was founded. Most of them have caused incalculable harm to those involved. In the end the UN has rarely held up to it's original promise. Nevertheless:
"No one wants the United Nations to suffer the fate of the League of Nations, which collapsed because it lacked real leverage. This is possible if influential countries bypass the United Nations and take military action without Security Council authorization. "
We have an opportunity to change the game. The "Great Game" of rival empires has threatened the world peace and human survival again and again. Deconstructions of the Cuban missile crisis show that had the USA attacked Cuba for instance, it would have started World War III with the destruction of a naval fleet as a result of a tactical strike by on the ground Russian tactical nukes. Kennedies own generals were agitating for a unilateral attacks on Cuba, but Kennedy overruled them, despite them (or maybe because he listened to them) making fun of him behind his back. And the crisis was not only averted, but further crisis were avoided for a time. Unlike with the Cuban missile crisis we are dealing with an issue over oil and local strategic interests that doesn't need the "Great Game" overlay, but we risk losing all our remaining support for any action at all:
"The potential strike by the United States against Syria, despite strong opposition from many countries and major political and religious leaders, including the pope, will result in more innocent victims and escalation, potentially spreading the conflict far beyond Syria’s borders. A strike would increase violence and unleash a new wave of terrorism. It could undermine multilateral efforts to resolve the Iranian nuclear problem and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and further destabilize the Middle East and North Africa. It could throw the entire system of international law and order out of balance."
The only people who stand to gain from this are the military-contractors (war-profiteers) and Al Qaeda, which happens to dominate the Syrian Rebel movement. There are so many risks in attacking Syria unilaterally that Putin is right about them.
"Syria is not witnessing a battle for democracy, but an armed conflict between government and opposition in a multireligious country. There are few champions of democracy in Syria. But there are more than enough Qaeda fighters and extremists of all stripes battling the government. The United States State Department has designated Al Nusra Front and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, fighting with the opposition, as terrorist organizations. This internal conflict, fueled by foreign weapons supplied to the opposition, is one of the bloodiest in the world."
And as much as we want a humanitarian response, a humanitarian response won't put more weapons in the hands of either rebels or the Government, but will deal with the hundreds of thousands of refugees and the intense pain and suffering. However our war industries are worried about Profit so Putin tries to remind us that we are supporting Al Qaeda Salafists:
"Mercenaries from Arab countries fighting there, and hundreds of militants from Western countries and even Russia, are an issue of our deep concern. Might they not return to our countries with experience acquired in Syria? After all, after fighting in Libya, extremists moved on to Mali. This threatens us all."
And Putin disavows that he's supporting the Syrian government reflexively:
"From the outset, Russia has advocated peaceful dialogue enabling Syrians to develop a compromise plan for their own future. We are not protecting the Syrian government, but international law. We need to use the United Nations Security Council and believe that preserving law and order in today’s complex and turbulent world is one of the few ways to keep international relations from sliding into chaos. The law is still the law, and we must follow it whether we like it or not. Under current international law, force is permitted only in self-defense or by the decision of the Security Council. Anything else is unacceptable under the United Nations Charter and would constitute an act of aggression."
And unfortunately Putin is right here too. At the very least the issue deserves investigation:
"No one doubts that poison gas was used in Syria. But there is every reason to believe it was used not by the Syrian Army, but by opposition forces, to provoke intervention by their powerful foreign patrons, who would be siding with the fundamentalists. Reports that militants are preparing another attack — this time against Israel — cannot be ignored."
And I don't like what he says next, but unfortunately he's right here too:
"It is alarming that military intervention in internal conflicts in foreign countries has become commonplace for the United States. Is it in America’s long-term interest? I doubt it. Millions around the world increasingly see America not as a model of democracy but as relying solely on brute force, cobbling coalitions together under the slogan “you’re either with us or against us.” "
And increasingly the pattern is the USA making up pretexts for invasions, from frauds about students endangered in Granada to the WMD propaganda around the Iraq invastion. And while I'd like to believe that our "humanitarian interventions" have helped the people we've stepped on with our boots and bombs, it's also just not so:
"But force has proved ineffective and pointless. Afghanistan is reeling, and no one can say what will happen after international forces withdraw. Libya is divided into tribes and clans. In Iraq the civil war continues, with dozens killed each day. In the United States, many draw an analogy between Iraq and Syria, and ask why their government would want to repeat recent mistakes. "
Our military is like a big sledgehammer being used to swat flies with predictable results:
" No matter how targeted the strikes or how sophisticated the weapons, civilian casualties are inevitable, including the elderly and children, whom the strikes are meant to protect."
There has to be a better way, but it requires a bit of cooperation from our "frenemies" and maybe a way to make our friends less enemy and more friend, because:
"The world reacts by asking: if you cannot count on international law, then you must find other ways to ensure your security. Thus a growing number of countries seek to acquire weapons of mass destruction. This is logical: if you have the bomb, no one will touch you. We are left with talk of the need to strengthen nonproliferation, when in reality this is being eroded. "
Countries rightly conclude that the only way to prevent an invasion is to have a "Force Du Frappe" that can assure MADD everywhere, which is insanity everywhere:
"We must stop using the language of force and return to the path of civilized diplomatic and political settlement."
So Putin's speech is an opportunity to get some sanity back into our own country. We don't need a cowboy riding a bomb down to blow up anybody. We don't need cowboy diplomacy. We need:
"A new opportunity to avoid military action has emerged in the past few days. The United States, Russia and all members of the international community must take advantage of the Syrian government’s willingness to place its chemical arsenal under international control for subsequent destruction. Judging by the statements of President Obama, the United States sees this as an alternative to military action. "
I don't feel insulted by Putin. I feel we are finally getting ourselves dug out of a mess Bush and Reaagan created with their triumphalist politics. Of course we must "trust but verify" but that means agreeing on concrete actions and boundaries to behavior (guidelines):
"I welcome the president’s interest in continuing the dialogue with Russia on Syria. We must work together to keep this hope alive, as we agreed to at the Group of 8 meeting in Lough Erne in Northern Ireland in June, and steer the discussion back toward negotiations."
I welcome Putin's response:
"If we can avoid force against Syria, this will improve the atmosphere in international affairs and strengthen mutual trust. It will be our shared success and open the door to cooperation on other critical issues."
And I don't need to comment on his conclusion:
"My working and personal relationship with President Obama is marked by growing trust. I appreciate this. I carefully studied his address to the nation on Tuesday. And I would rather disagree with a case he made on American exceptionalism, stating that the United States’ policy is “what makes America different. It’s what makes us exceptional.” It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation. There are big countries and small countries, rich and poor, those with long democratic traditions and those still finding their way to democracy. Their policies differ, too. We are all different, but when we ask for the Lord’s blessings, we must not forget that God created us equal. "
Except "here here!"
Eating through the floor day by day.
Nothing like stinking smoking slag on the dance floor.
Pouring down in molten layers into the ground
Black smoke rising and coating all around
with contaminated poisons in the air and the ground.
I cry radioactive tears
and my bones ache with potassium salts,
While cesium distractions poison my mind
And radioactive iodine tumors close my throat
While like the mad Hatter I loose my mind
Thinking that these fools have stolen my years.
Chistopher H. Holte first written October 5, 2012
Monday, September 9, 2013
Bad Constitution versus Unconstitutional
The other day I wrote a blog entry based on Naomi Wolfe's article. She made the case that the Domestic Security Alliance Council had assaulted Occupy from before they were created. But what is this organization, what does it do, and why would it be involved with trying to crush protest or democratic actions aimed at reigning in wall street's corruption and excesses?
Who is the Domestic Security Alliance Council (DSAC)?
The answer to that question becomes obvious from looking at it's constitution (charter), purpose, membership and mission. Here is it's homepage statement of purpose:
The Domestic Security Alliance Council (DSAC), a strategic partnership between the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security and the private sector, enhances communications and promotes the timely and bidirectional effective exchange of information keeping the nation's critical infrastructure safe, secure and resilient. DSAC advances elements of the FBI and DHS missions' in preventing, deterring, and investigating criminal and terrorism acts, particularly those effecting interstate commerce, while advancing the ability of the U.S. private sector to protect its employees, assets and proprietary information.
Analyzing this mission statement one sees that there are a number of potential built in conflicts of interest here. For one thing is the DSAC serving the interests of the country as a whole, or it's member companies and their industries? From the Occupy experience, it seems more likely the later than the former. Once again the premise (bait) is that such an organization is created to protect against "terrorism" but the switch is that it is also there to protect the prerogatives of the private sector.
But it gets curiouser and curiouser as one enquires:
The DSAC Leadership Board is formed by approximately 25 representatives from various organizations. The DSAC Leadership Board (DLB) represents a diverse cross-section of private sector organizations based on industry, geographic region, and other factors. The individual members of the DLB will serve as the subject matter experts for their respective industries.
Again, this seems innocuous. We need representative bodies for all the stakeholders in our country. But, wait, that is the problem. Where is labor? Where are teachers, miners, employees of these various industries? Look at the following list:
Company Name Company Name 3M Archer Daniels Midland American Express Bank of America Barclays Boeing Bristol-Myers Squibb Bridgestone Firestone CIGNA Citigroup Coca-Cola ConocoPhillips Ernst & Young FedEx Corp Dupont General Electric Kellogg's KMPG International JetBlue Mastercard Medco Health Solutions Merck & Company NextEra Energy RBS/Citizens USAA Walmart Walt Disney Company Time Warner United Airlines Src:http://www.dsac.gov/Pages/dlb.aspx taken 9/9/2013
No teachers, no activists, no members from organizations like Occupy. On the contrary, Occupy is the natural enemy of a list like this. No members from Unions. Again, this is a list of people who have a personal stake in attacking labor. Bad constitution leads to organizations without democratic features. The democratic feature here being the republican one of membership from all the stakeholders affected by the organizations decisions.
All these are industries, with a "private, separate" agenda seeking their own advantage over other stakeholders. In a similar manner to our trade negotiations we are trusting lawyers who work almost entirely for private companies to also represent their customers, employees, retirees, etc... There is not even an expectation of trust that they will actually in fact represent any of these people. That is where these boards go wrong. They are purely executive organizations run for the "private, separate advantage of their board members. If those board members were to represent the greater good, their stockholders would revolt and their CEO's would fire them.
So without even getting into the personalities and histories of the members of this organization I already know it is badly constituted, is a tyrannical organization (Locke's definition of Tyranny as power for "private, separate advantage"), and is going to engage in mischief. It's badly constituted, and because of that is a tyrannical organization that if it happens to act any different is acting out of it's chartered structure.
I have a lot more to say and had written it all out in draft form when I misplaced the draft. But the core point is simple and I don't need all that to make it. Why would greedy or powerful folks want to defend the letter of a charter over it's intent? Because that is how tyranny works. One can be legally "constitutional" and have a badly constituted organization. And a badly constituted organization is unconstitutional by design. But one will never get a corrupt lawyer or Judge to affirm that without changing the judges and their education on the subject. It has to be changed by changing the constitution of the organization. A government that is constituted as a Republic, but whose organelles are badly constituted is a badly constituted government. The tyranny is enabled by the charter.
Thus in our country efforts to make our government less tyrannical have often been defeated by tyrannical courts taking advantage of bad constitution.
Saturday, September 7, 2013
Thursday, September 5, 2013
Naomi Wolfe detailed last year one of the the things I pointed out in some earlier posts this year;(Surveillance Metastasizes, Bush's Loogie and "The Ghost of J. Edgar Hoover". In her blog she tells us the crackdown on Occupy was both more devious and more:
"...more sophisticated than we had imagined: new documents show that the violent crackdown on Occupy last fall – so mystifying at the time – was not just coordinated at the level of the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security, and local police. The crackdown, which involved, as you may recall, violent arrests, group disruption, canister missiles to the skulls of protesters, people held in handcuffs so tight they were injured, people held in bondage till they were forced to wet or soil themselves –was coordinated with the big banks themselves."[emphasis mine]
She goes on to refer to a document from a recent law suit showing just what a threat to civil liberties this is, showing:
...a terrifying network of coordinated DHS, FBI, police, regional fusion center, and private-sector activity so completely merged into one another that the monstrous whole is, in fact, one entity: in some cases, bearing a single name, the Domestic Security Alliance Council. And it reveals this merged entity to have one centrally planned, locally executed mission. The documents, in short, show the cops and DHS working for and with banks to target, arrest, and politically disable peaceful American citizens."
Domestic Security Alliance Council
This council is probably the most dangerous body our country has ever constituted. Anyway, the document was summarized here:
For more on DSAC read: http://holtesthoughts.blogspot.com/2013/09/the-domestic-security-alliance-council.html
And the FBI document:
So instead of surveilling and cracking down on Financial Fraud, the FBI worked with the Fraudsters to crackdown on folks protesting getting defrauded. Really great.
Wednesday, September 4, 2013
This is a follow on to my post from the weekend Syrian Chemical Weapons attack: False Flag or not?, since then the UN inspectors went home, the UN repeated it's allegation that the Rebels used Chemical Weapons, I've seen evidence that the Rebels used Chemical Weapons before, were caught at the Syrian border with them, and allegations that Assad had used them before. Meanwhile I'm seeing an administration that dismisses inconvenient facts and am even more convinced we are being rolled [again] by the Military-Industrial establishment. I still believe:
- One: Unilateral action would be dumb.
- Two: The US is discounting warnings that the Saudis/Al Nusra are involved in these chemical attacks and that this is a false flag -- even though many of their own rank and file believe this.
- Three: Unless the USA can at least get more evidence on who launched those attacks, they risk falling into a trap.
The Blog "Who What why" reminds us that Wesley Clark testified back around 2008 that a neo-conservative agenda included Syria and has since 9/11 provided them with the opportunity. Who What Why Reminds us that he said at the time:
"2007, Gen. Wesley Clark claims America underwent a “policy coup” at the time of the 9/11 attacks. In this video, he reveals that, right after 9/11, he was privy to information contained in a classified memo: US plans to attack and remove governments in seven countries over five years: Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Iran."
Wesley Clark wrote recently in USA Today (http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2013/08/29/syria-wesley-clark-kosovo-nato/2726733/. He compares the attack on Syria not to Kosovo, but to Clinton's punishment strike on Saddam Hussein for a plot to assassinate GHW Bush in 1993
"First, Kosovo was a much larger effort. In terms of scope, a more analogous precedent to a strike on Syria would be President Clinton's strike against Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein's intelligence center in Baghdad with cruise missiles in 1993, in punishment for Saddam's alleged plot to assassinate former president George H. W. Bush."
But wait, at the time I heard that was to punish Saddam for outrages he'd perpetrated against his Shiites in the south and the Kurds in the North. I guess I should be used to lies as a cover for real reasons by now. Anyway Clark supports a reaction to the use of chemical weapons:
But President Obama has rightly drawn a line at the use of chemical weapons. Some weapons are simply too inhuman to be used. And, as many of us learned during 1990s, in the words of President Clinton, "Where we can make a difference, we must act."
But of course, if the Saudis were using chemical weapons to try to start a false flag, I'm not sure that punishing Assad as they want us to, is going to do it. We need concerted action, and we need to make sure that we don't get tricked into doing what our frenemies want us to do instead of what is good for us and the world as a whole.
And the UN Secretary warns (and so Does Wesley Clark obliquely:
"I take note of the argument for action to prevent a future use of chemical weapons. At the same time, we must consider the impact of any punitive measure on efforts to prevent further bloodshed and facilitate the political resolution of the conflict," Ban said.
So we need to do something, as a world. Not sure the United States is going to win out by launching a punitive strike that helps the Al Nusra/Saudi's at our expense. But something is needed. And everyone, agrees:
Ban did not blame any party for the alleged attack on a Damascus suburb, saying that "If confirmed, any use of chemical weapons by anyone under any circumstances will be a serious violation of international law and an outrageous war crime."
We need an international intervention. And we need the various greedy parties to set aside their destructive "grand game" and do the right thing (for a change):
"Whatever the source, this latest allegation should be as wakeup call for the international community," Ban said.
So, while I'm still convinced we are being rolled, the US needs to be active here. Maybe go to the UN next. But striking Assad? Not sure we'll get the kind of "bang for a buck we really want. Because the blowback from such a thing can be hell, and because we aren't likely to get rid of them at this point, since both sides have them.
He stressed that an ongoing investigation by U.N. chemical weapons experts "is uniquely placed to independently establish the facts in an objective and impartial manner."
Too Bad the UN doesn't have a court with International Sheriff powers and genuine Juries.
"UN chief: US attack to punish alleged Syria chemical weapons attack could unleash more turmoil."
Oh well. We are definitely being rolled by a whole lot of greedy, ambitious and perverse players. But this box has steel walls. I'm listening to Chris Hayes and am hoping he has better ideas than I have at this moment, because nobody is following my ideas. I'll publish this as soon as I hear what he has to say.
Oh s**t. Chris sees this even darker than I do. He's really sure that a strike will make things much worse. He sees Assad's regime as desperate, and that if he used Gas, it was as a statement that he and his followers have their backs to the wall and are in this together. So we attack, and they are not going to stop, but raise the ante instead. He also points out what I've been pointing that the Rebels include Jihadi's whose program makes Assad's look enlightened by comparison. And he suggests that we spend money actually supporting refugees, and preparing to repair the problems.
As I noted today, cruise missiles are really expensive (Chris gives the numbers) and aren't a strap on Phallic symbol, but a very expensive piece of equipment guaranteed to kill civilians (especially if it does hit chemical weapons). There has to be a better solution to the Syrians than the USA bombing the smithereens of them. I don't think it is good for the USA. I know it's not good for the long term survival of anyone, especially Israel and Israelis, and it may satisfy the atavistic urges of a few chicken hawks (who never send their own kids). But it will make a few people very rich, and so as John Stewart says:
"The idiot parade is in town!"
Tuesday, September 3, 2013
I see it all over the place. Prosecutors who charge people based on what they can get away with rather than what is appropriate, and lawyers in general who treat justice as a big money game: How to get off those with the most money, and sock it too everyone else. This, of course is not how it is supposed to be, and you almost never will see a lawyer admit that that is the game. But I've been trying to help a family member with a judicial problem, and that is the confession I hear from all the lawyers I consult. Don't have too much more to report on this one. But when the judicial system is a game for the lawyers that is injustice and tyranny not justice. We need major reforms to the incentives and disincentives of all our major systems.
Sunday, September 1, 2013
Normally, I prefer to believe people are being straight up with me. I don’t’ like conspiracy theories or theorists. They usually don’t get their facts right and they usually misuse those facts to go after their personal prejudices. So it really bothers me when something doesn’t smell right and I find out that they have a point. I prefer explanations for events to follow Occams razor – the simplest explanation is often the right one.
That being so, sometimes the facts require me to agree with folks I ordinarily don’t agree with. Like in this case Pat Buchanan:
Buchanan said on Newsmax about the allegations against the Syrian Government.:
“This thing reeks of a false flag operation,” Buchanan told Newsmax. “I would not understand or comprehend that Bashar al-Assad—no matter how bad a man he may be—would be so stupid as to order a chemical weapons attack on civilians in his own country, when the immediate consequences of which might be that he would be at war with the United States.”
Unless Assad has a secret death wish Buchanan is right. It does the Syrians no good to use chemical weapons on their own people – but it is a great opportunity for Syrian Rebels seeking outside support.
This makes a good place to start. For the Republicans and their front groups disinformation is a stock in trade. Crooks recognize each other. So when two crooks duke it out in public that is often when we learn the dirty laundry both sides had been hiding.
The government assessment of the attack makes most of it’s claims based on Signal intelligence (Sigint) and Satellite intelligence. The administration claims:
Multiple streams of intelligence indicate that the regime executed a rocket and artillery attack against the Damascus suburbs in the early hours of August 21. Satellite detections corroborate that attacks from a regime-controlled area struck neighborhoods where the chemical attacks reportedly occurred – including Kafr Batna, Jawbar, ‘Ayn Tarma, Darayya, and Mu’addamiyah. This includes the detection of rocket launches from regime controlled territory early in the morning, approximately 90 minutes before the first report of a chemical attack appeared in social media. The lack of flight activity or missile launches also leads us to conclude that the regime used rockets in the attack.
So, the government’s claim is that the Syrian Government prepared for this attack and launched it early in the morning of August 21, 2013. They further complain that they have intercepts and humint intelligence. Summarizing:
… “there is a substantial body of information that implicates the Syrian government’s responsibility in the chemical weapons attack that took place on August 21.As indicated, there is additional intelligence that remains classified because of sources and methods concerns that is being provided to Congress and international partners.”
But is this information reliable?
But is this information all the information, is it accurate? The trouble with our Espionage act and our SIG-INT and SAT-INT intelligence is that the days when we could be sure the intelligence was really truly accurate are long over, and were an illusion in the first place. Secrecy and Honest intelligence analysis can go hand in hand, but depend on military officers with a kind of integrity that isn’t always in evidence anymore. Even if we concede that the missiles in the attack were fired from within Syrian Government controlled lines, that doesn’t mean that the Syrian Government necessarily fired them. It might give analysts reasonable confidence, but only if one assumes that those lines are stable. The attacks occurred at night, and the rockets were launched around 2 AM. That is plenty of time for rebels to setup and fire their weapons, with plenty of time to return to their own lines, assuming that the Syrian Army even actually in fact controls those lines by day. That is the nature of irregular warfare. A false flag is extremely possible, and if our security forces are compromised by frenemies (such as Prince Bandar’s Saudi Secret Service) then they know exactly where to position rockets to setup a false flag attack that would fool our CIA Satellites. Assuming our CIA isn’t in on the con.
So “substantial” body of information is not enough given the untrusted and untrustworthy environment we work within, and the untrustworthy past behavior of our CIA and it’s past “mistakes” all of which bear an uncanny resemblance to what is going on now.
In 2003 we were told that they had a substantial body of information to implicate Iraq in having Weapons of Mass Destruction, and supposedly the Iraqis were developing a Nuke WMD capability as well. The Iraqis were complaining that they were complying with the WMD treaty obligations they’d signed after the first gulf war but no one was listening to them. Later it turned out we were being played by an Iraqi Shiite operative who was lying to us. Facts that contradicted the official narrative were stepped on, and Colin Powell gave a presentation at the UN on Iraqi Weapons of Mass Destruction, that later turned out to be based on pure fabrication….
Understand why most of us who remember this are alarmed?
Evidence for False Flag attacks:
The Turks intercepted Al Nusra (Al Qaeda group under Prince Bandar's control) delivering chemical weapons through their country:
"The EGM identified 12 members of the AL Nusra terrorist cell and also [seized] ceased fire arms and digital equipment. This is the second major official confirmation of the use of chemical weapons by Al-Qaeda terrorists in Syria after UN inspector Carla Del Ponte’s recent statement confirming the use of chemical weapons by the Western-backed terrorists in Syria."http://www.globalresearch.ca/turkish-police-find-chemical-weapons-in-the-possession-of-al-nusra-terrorists-heading-for-syria/5336917
Dale Gavlak, who used to work at Salon but now works at “Mint Press” and Yahya Ababneh who speaks fluent Arabic were in the Damascus region, interviewing victims and investigating the subject ( http://www.sott.net/article/265653-Syrian-rebels-and-local-residents-testify-that-Saudi-intelligence-chief-Prince-Bandar-bin-Sultan-supplied-chemical-weapons-to-al-Qaeda-linked-group) They write:
Ghouta, Syria - As the machinery for a U.S.-led military intervention in Syria gathers pace following last week's chemical weapons attack, the U.S. and its allies may be targeting the wrong culprit. ."
Of course Syria and it’s allies are making the same claims, but nobody is listening.
”Interviews with people in Damascus and Ghouta, a suburb of the Syrian capital, where the humanitarian agency Doctors Without Borders said at least 355 people had died last week from what it believed to be a neurotoxic agent, appear to indicate as much."
So, the people on the ground seem to believe they were attacked by Rebels:
”The U.S., Britain, and France as well as the Arab League have accused the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad for carrying out the chemical weapons attack, which mainly targeted civilians. U.S. warships are stationed in the Mediterranean Sea to launch military strikes against Syria in punishment for carrying out a massive chemical weapons attack. The U.S. and others are not interested in examining any contrary evidence, with U.S Secretary of State John Kerry saying Monday that Assad's guilt was "a judgment ... already clear to the world."
But as we found out from the Iraqi debacle, the people “on the ground” often have more accurate information about what is going on than governments:
”However, from numerous interviews with doctors, Ghouta residents, rebel fighters and their families, a different picture emerges. Many believe that certain rebels received chemical weapons via the Saudi intelligence chief, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, and were responsible for carrying out the dealing gas attack.”
The story they recount claims that some of the rebels were given weapons to use against Assad that turned out to be chemical weapons:
”Abdel-Moneim said his son and 12 other rebels were killed inside of a tunnel used to store weapons
when they apparently inadvertently set off the weapons they’d been given by “a Saudi militant, known as Abu Ayesha, who was leading a fighting battalion.”
”The father described the weapons as having a "tube-like structure" while others were like a "huge gas bottle."
And of course he is describing chemical weapons . The rebels stored the weapons in tunnels and fired them at night. And he says his son died during the chemical weapons attack, apparently from weapons they’d been given by “Jabnat al Nusrat” allies. They interviewed a rebel named “J” who said:
"We were very curious about these arms. And unfortunately, some of the fighters handled the weapons improperly and set off the explosions,"
Further reading on this:
But of course that is Hearsay.” But the Wallstreet journal reported months ago that Bandar was leading the effort to fight the Syrian regime, and that their intelligence operatives have been our primary sources for allegations against the Syrian regime
Further reading on this: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323423804579024452583045962.html
Syrian Rebel Rocket Attacks:
We know that statements that Syrians can’t carry out rocket attacks are a lie because the Syrians have been successfully using Rocket launchers and rockets, starting with smaller models back in April. On Mon Jun 17, 2013 9:01am EDT Reuters reported an article by By Amena Bakr from DUBAI titled
Saudi supplying missiles to Syria rebels: Gulf source
Those were followed by anti-tank and larger rocket platforms. Reuters reporter Suleiman Al-Khalidi AMMAN | Thu Aug 15, 2013 11:45am EDT reported:
Headline: “New Saudi-supplied missiles boost rebels in south Syria” “(Reuters) - Rebels in southern Syria have fired newly acquired anti-tank guided missiles supplied by Saudi Arabia in a significant boost to their battle against President Bashar al-Assad, rebel, intelligence and diplomatic sources say.
So when the administration claims that the rebels couldn’t have fired rockets, they are wrong.
Gavlak’s article then references an article by Peter Oborne, which is in the Daily Telegraph:
”Consider this: the only beneficiaries from the atrocity were the rebels, previously losing the war, who now have Britain and America ready to intervene on their side. While there seems to be little doubt that chemical weapons were used, there is doubt about who deployed them. It is important to remember that Assad has been accused of using poison gas against civilians before. But on that occasion, Carla del Ponte, a UN commissioner on Syria, concluded that the rebels, not Assad, were probably responsible.”
So not only could the rebels use rockets and poison Gas, but they’d been caught using poison gas before.
Al Qaeda and Bandar
But the interviews by Gavlak and his confederate show some other juicy facts. Maybe, just maybe Bandar is revealing some things that he probably should have kept more circumspect. For example, while the Saudis are funding moderate rebels, most of their funds are going to the radical and the radicals refer to Bandar affectionately:
”rebels interviewed said Prince Bandar is referred to as "al-Habib" or 'the lover' by al-Qaida [Al Nusra] militants fighting in Syria.”
Bandar has also boasted recently about being in control of the Chechen Rebels against Russia.
Reuters also reported:
I can give you a guarantee to protect the Winter Olympics in the city of Sochi on the Black Sea next year. The Chechen groups that threaten the security of the games are controlled by us, and they will not move in the Syrian territory’s direction without coordinating with us. These groups do not scare us. We use them in the face of the Syrian regime but they will have no role or influence in Syria’s political future.”
To which Putin is said to have replied:
“We know that you have supported the Chechen terrorist groups for a decade. And that support, which you have frankly talked about just now, is completely incompatible with the common objectives of fighting global terrorism that you mentioned. We are interested in developing friendly relations according to clear and strong principles.”
The Chechen rebels that Bandar supported were doing the equivalent of Al Qaeda in Russia, attacking train stations, schools, and killing innocent people far from Chechnya. Bandar is also famous for supporting Bin Laden. Supposedly breaking with him when he started plotting 9/11, but all the attackers on 9/11 were from Saudi Arabia or Yemen. Whose side are we on here? There is only circumstantial evidence leaking Bandar to 9/11, but the evidence there is stronger than claims that Iraq had anything to do with it – or Syria.
Following President Carter's advice:
I almost forgot the most important thing, a kind of post script. President Carter suggests:
"ATLANTA....The use of chemical weapons on August 21 near Damascus is a grave breach of international law that has rightfully outraged the world community. The United States and some of its European allies are calling for military strikes on Syria, but apparently without support from NATO or the Arab League. Predictably, Russia, Iran, and Syria are predicting dire consequences. At Syria's invitation, a U.N. investigation is already underway and will soon make its report. A punitive military response without a U.N. Security Council mandate or broad support from NATO and the Arab League would be illegal under international law and unlikely to alter the course of the war. It will only harden existing positions and postpone a sorely needed political process to put an end to the catastrophic violence. Instead, all should seek to leverage the consensus among the entire international community, including Russia and Iran, condemning the use of chemical weapons in Syria and bringing under U.N. oversight the country's stockpile of such weapons."
"It is imperative to determine the facts of the attack and present them to the public. Those responsible for the use of chemical weapons must bear personal responsibility," said President Carter. "The chemical attack should be a catalyst for redoubling efforts to convene a peace conference, to end hostilities, and urgently to find a political solution."
Doctors Without borders
Doctors Without borders reports: http://www.doctorswithoutborders.org/press/release.cfm?id=7033&cat=press-release
Response to Government References to MSF Syria Statement
Over the last two days, the American, British, and other governments have referred to reports from several groups, including Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), while stating that the use of chemical weapons in Syria was “undeniable” and designating the perpetrators.
"MSF today warned that its medical information could not be used as evidence to certify the precise origin of the exposure to a neurotoxic agent or to attribute responsibility."
"On August 24, MSF announced that three hospitals it supplies in Syria’s Damascus governorate had reportedly received 3,600 patients displaying neurotoxic symptoms, of which 355 died. Although our information indicates mass exposure to a neurotoxic agent, MSF clearly stated that scientific confirmation of the toxic agent was required, and therefore called for an independent investigation to shed light on what would constitute, if confirmed, a massive and unacceptable violation of international humanitarian law."
"MSF also stated that in its role as an independent medical humanitarian organization, it was not in a position to determine responsibility for the event. Now that an investigation is underway by United Nations inspectors, MSF rejects that our statement be used as a substitute for the investigation or as a justification for military action. MSF's sole purpose is to save lives, alleviate the suffering of populations torn by Syrian conflict, and bear witness when confronted with a critical event, in strict compliance with the principles of neutrality and impartiality."
"The latest massive influx of patients displaying neurotoxic symptoms in Damascus governorate comes on top of an already catastrophic humanitarian situation facing the Syrian people, one characterized by extreme violence, displacement, the destruction of medical facilities, and severely limited or blocked humanitarian action."
- Articles read but not cited, or suggested to be read for follow up:
- This Zero Hedge fund had the first raw translation I saw of the meeting between Putin and Bandar:
- Even if Bandar weren't providing new missiles, the rebels are also using looted missiles:
- Russian Sources: