Militant Libertarian Give me liberty or eat lead! Sun, 01 Mar 2015 05:52:32 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Enough With the Dress Sun, 01 Mar 2015 05:52:32 +0000 EnoughWithTheDress


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NSA’s SIM Card Scandal Bigger Than You Think Fri, 27 Feb 2015 08:41:59 +0000 Stolen encryption keys are just the beginning. US NSA appears to have compromised big telecom, IT manufacturers, online banking, and even passports, starting on the factory floor. 

c4cbb_Snowden-NSA-Punya-Kunci-Untuk-Sadap-Seluruh-SIM-Card-di-DuniaFebruary 22, 2015 (Vladimir Platov – NEO) – Recent days have been marked by a record number of news stories regarding the US and its allies trying to establish total control over Internet users.

On February 16, researchers at the Moscow-based security group Kaspersky Lab announced the discovery of the ultimate virus which has virtually infected all spheres of military and civilian computing in more than 40 countries around the world. They’ve managed to discover a piece of malware that must have been installed on hard disks while they were still being manufactured, and due to its complexity and a certain number of features that it shares with Stuxnet, it’s safe to assume that it was created by US secret services.

On February 18, The Guardian confirmed that for the last 7 years Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) had been sharing personal intelligence data en masse with America’s national security agencies, regardless of the fact that it had intercepted millions of foreign citizens’ conversations. The ruling of a UK court clearly suggests that these actions were illegal on top of being carried out in violation of the the European Convention on Human Rights.

On February 19, it was announced that the National Security Agency (NSA) along with its British partner in crime –GCHQ, has manged to steal encryption keys from Gemalto – the world’s largest manufacturer of SIM-cards. This allowed the above named intelligence agencies to tap any phone and intercept data from any mobile device that was using a SIM-card produced by Gemalto. This conspiracy was unveiled by The Intercept, which added that Gemalto was created nine years ago when the French company Axalto merged with Gemplus International which was operating in Luxembourg. Today Gemalto has more that 85 offices across the globe along with a total of 40 factories, working in close cooperation with leading telecommunication corporations, including ATT, Verizon and T-Mobile, along with many others. Representatives of the three aforementioned companies refused to comment on this scandal.

One can easily count German Deutsche Telekom among the customers of the Gemalto group. Hence there is little doubt regarding the involvement of US intelligence in the tapping of Angela Merkel’s mobile phone, an incident uncovered back in mid 2014. What is particularly peculiar in this situation is the decision of The Federal Attorney General of Germany ending the investigation of the Chancellor’s tapped phone – as reported by Focus Online – on the pretext of “zero possible outcome of the investigation.” Well, the claims of the same Focus Online that “Merkel now has a new cell phone that cannot be tapped,” looks ridiculous enough, since this brand “new phone” uses the same-old Gemalto SIM-card. So the NSA can spy on Madam Chancellor as long as they see fit, while the attorney general sees nothing wrong about it. Well, perhaps, Germany has finally agreed to stand in line with the citizens of other countries and their political and business elite, eager to play the role of laboratory rats in the US intelligence surveillance game.

One would be surprised to learn that Gemalto is producing up to 2 billion SIM-cards per year, along with chips for bank cards and identity cards. According to many information security experts, US intelligence agencies, due to the encryption keys they’ve stolen are able to retrieve any information from mobile devices, bank cards, and/or e-passports.

The Wall Street Journal reported the “successes” of US intelligence agencies in retrieving information from millions of US citizens’ cell phones back in 2014. Most of America’s citizens are under constant watch of US security, due to surveillance systems mounted on light aircraft and drones developed by Boeing, which allows them to collect private data from thousands of mobile phones. In addition to the ability to establish the whereabouts of a person, which can be tracked with the accuracy to within three meters, his phone can be remotely block, while all information stored on it can be easily stolen.

On February 20, the spokesperson for the United States Department of State Jen Psaki in her typical manner complained about how difficult it is for the US to confront thousands of hostile attacks in cyberspace. However, she has never mentioned the above listed facts and Washington’s paranoid desire to dominate cyberspace.

Vladimir Platov, an expert on the Middle East, exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”

Article source:


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Science as the New Religion Fri, 27 Feb 2015 08:41:43 +0000 If nature can lead itself off such catastrophic cliffs with natural genetic mutations, and traditional breeding has altered our food to the point it is not edible to some, what might humans altering DNA inside organisms lead to?

Biotechnology cannot be uninvented. While it shouldn’t be feared, it should be respected. It should be understood by the greatest number of people across the widest possible social strata. The democratization of this technology means the unlocking of its potential for the greatest possible good for the greatest possible number of people, controlled by the very people who will directly benefit from it.

3c1bf_2013-5-24_GSKUntil then, skepticism regarding products peddled by immense corporate monopolies jealously hording this technology caught time and time again infiltrating government regulatory bodies and running stables of “scientists” and “researchers” churning out “peer reviewed studies” sponsored by the very producers of the subject at hand is not “irrational” nor constitutes a distaste for science, but rather is simple, cautious commonsense.

The Problem isn’t Vaccines, its the Criminals and Killers Peddling Them 

Commonsense also tells us that rolling up our sleeve and allowing ourselves to be injected by a substance produced by literal criminals is a demonstration of unhinged, absolute insanity.

Indeed, the manufacturers of vaccines are criminals, literally. One example is GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), an immense pharmaceutical giant based in the UK. It has been caught on at least 3 separate continents engaged in a multi-billion dollar bribery racket. In China when the police began investigating the systemic corruption driving GSK’s sales in Asia, GSK attempted to bribe the police as well.

The Financial Times would report in an article titled, “Police accuse GlaxoSmithKline China head of ‘ordering’ bribes,” that:

According to the official, the company’s China subsidiary set up several internal units with code names like “operation Great Wall” and “operation soaring dragon” specifically to bribe doctors and government officials. 

He also said that in 2012, as the company came under scrutiny from the authorities, Mr Reilly and two Chinese subordinates established a “crisis management team” to bribe law enforcement officers from China’s industrial and commercial administration. The goal was to convince them to stop an investigation into the company’s illegal activity, the official said.

The pharmaceutical giant has been caught in Europe, the Middle East, and the US in similar bribery rackets of equal immensity.

GSK also manufactures vaccines for diseases including hepatitis, rotavirus and HPV infections, diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough, measles, mumps, rubella, bacterial meningitis, and influenza. The question of whether or not properly manufactured vaccines can guard against the above mentioned diseases isn’t the question, the question is why would anyone trust their health and life to a corporation engaged in global-spanning criminality?

But GSK’s bribery scandals and the fact that virtually all other mega-pharmaceutical corporations are engaged in similar practices isn’t the worst of it.

During the height of South Africa’s apartheid system, government scientists were working on vaccines that would devastate the nation’s black communities. The Economist would report in an article titled, “Dr Death and Prime Evil,” that (emphasis added):

In contrast to the conviction of Mr de Kock stands the bizarre case of Wouter Basson (pictured), a medical doctor who ran the apartheid government’s chemical and biological warfare programme. Nicknamed “Dr Death” by newspapers, he was granted immunity for many crimes because they allegedly took place outside South Africa. As Dr Death he allegedly provided cyanide capsules to soldiers, and tried to develop bacteria that would selectively kill black people, as well as vaccines to make black women infertile.

The United Nations would elaborate on this biological weapons program in their report titled, “Project Coast: Apartheid’s Chemical and Biological Warfare Programme,” which stated (emphasis added):

One example of this interaction involved anti-fertility work. According to documents from RRL [Roodeplaat Research Laboratories], the facility had a number of registered projects aimed at developing an anti-fertility vaccine. This was a personal project of the first managing director of RRL, Dr Daniel Goosen. Goosen, who had done research into embryo transplants, told the TRC that he and Basson had discussed the possibility of developing an anti-fertility vaccine which could be selectively administered—without the knowledge of the recipient. The intention, he said, was to administer it to black South African women without their knowledge.

Image: Dr. Basson helped develop vaccines aimed at destroying South Africa’s
black communities. They were to be given to victims without their knowledge.

One wonders what sort of lies the South African media would have invented, when black women began to realize the vaccines were in fact a weapon aimed at them and their communities and began warning others not to take them. Would terms like “anti-vaxxers” have been invented, and parades of “scientists” rolled out to assure South Africans that vaccines were perfectly safe and those refusing to take them were dangerously ignorant? Would South Africa’s version of National Geographic have claimed such people were simply being irrational in the face of the unquestionable reasoning of science?

Why is National Geographic now calling people “irrational” for being suspicious of vaccines when they are created by criminal corporations and when there are recent examples of governments using vaccines as weapons against their own people?

It might also trouble readers to know that South Africa’s repressive, racist, genocidal regime at the time received significant support from the United States and many European nations. This included both political support and significant military aid.

Considering all of this, it would seem rather unreasonable to trust “the experts.”

As with GMOs, studies underwriting the safety and necessity of these vaccines are also subject to immense lobbying efforts and outright corruption and criminality. Efforts to vaccinate the entire population of the planet (7 billion and counting) with a growing number of vaccines, including boosters for those who have already received them, is worth billions upon billions. Trusting “scientists” without considering the possibility this immense fortune might skew their objectivity is folly. It is just as dangerous to be ignorant of the human condition and its corruptibility as it is to be ignorant of scientific facts regarding diseases and the benefits of vaccines.

What is the truth behind the science of vaccines? They work. They may or may not be necessary in nations whose populations have access to proper nutrition along with modern sanitation and hygiene practices. If vaccines are to be distributed, they should be manufactured and administered by interests outside of government and corporate entities, both of whom have proven beyond doubt they cannot be trusted with such a responsibility.

Climate Change Will Happen, With or Without Us 

Everything from the sun, to geological processes, to constantly evolving ecosystems have an impact on the climate. There is no “normal” climate we must attempt to maintain. Millions of years before human civilization, CO2 levels and temperatures were many times higher than what they are now. During the Cretaceous period there were no ice caps and the continent of Antarctica was covered with lush temperate forests inhabited by dinosaurs.

Image: The future after anthropogenic climate change causes sea levels to rise? No, this is the Earth tens of millions of years ago when CO2 levels were 15 times higher than they are today and Antarctica was covered in temperate forests filled with dinosaurs. Climate change is going to happen with or without humanity, and instead of working on policy, we should be working on technology that will help us minimize our impact on the Earth (and our own health) and ‘weather’ the weather, no matter what it does or why.  
Humanity itself has seen wild fluctuations in the climate, enduring an ice age and an exceptionally warm period during Medieval times.

The fact that the climate of the planet naturally changes, however, does not absolve humans from minimizing their impact on the planet. Beyond ending the reckless genetic contamination of the planet’s genetic heritage through the use of GMOs, the petrochemical industry and the heavily centralized consumerist paradigm that currently exists must also be dismantled, decentralized, and converted to more sustainable and healthier alternatives, not only for the planet, but for society and human beings individually.

Image: Deutsche Bank’s “CO2 Clock” meant to leverage people’s fear of anthropogenic climate change directly into billions via a “carbon credit” pyramid scheme. While big-oil makes billions off of petrochemicals destroying the environment and then denying their role in doing so, their literal bankrollers are making billions exploiting public outrage over their practices. Meanwhile, the climate may or may not be changing, with or without humans driving it, and no one is genuinely examining it because they are all entangled in this immense racket.  

That should be a conclusion both sides of the current climate change debate could agree on – one doesn’t need to be a scientist to understand the impact on human health car exhaust has on the human body or the immense waste involved in manufacturing plastic trinkets in China, putting them on a ship to steam across oceans to be put onto trucks to be put into a Walmart and sit under lights burning 24 hours a day to be bought by a consumer who drove to the store and now must drive back home.

But dismantling immense oil and retail monopolies and replacing them with self-sufficient, high-tech local communities seems to be furthest from the minds of those championing urgent activism in response to climate change. Instead, they propose even more power be put into the hands of governments, banks, and corporations to create “policy.” The “policy” to no one’s surprise, leaves more power centralized in the hands of the very special interests that are truly and quantifiably destroying the environment.

Why aren’t people seeking technological rather than political solutions to address climate change? What if we mitigate humanity’s impact on the climate, and it still changes, just as it has for hundreds of millions of years before humans walked the Earth? Will “carbon credits” feed us if the world becomes incredibly cold, destroying global agriculture? Will it hold back flood waters if oceans rise despite our greatest efforts? Some how, “science” has convinced people to worry immensely about a problem but do nothing at all practical about it.

What is it about rational “science” that has people acting so irrationally?

Science as the New Religion 

Hiding behind science is nothing new. Darwinists hid behind it to prop up their racism, which in fact inspired the Nazis to hide behind it to scientifically prove they were the “master race.” The Nazis, in fact, loved science, and used it with horrible precision. As mentioned before, big-tobacco used “science” to prove their products were perfectly “safe.” What precisely has convinced people today that such charades are not still playing out, more refined now than ever?

As National Geographic stated, people love their tribes. Those who have circled their wagons around “science” as their chosen dogma, are no different than the religious they believe themselves to be superior to. They have not truly and objectively looked into any of the issues they blindly support – and as National Geographic did, simply claim “it’s science!” or that “experts said!”

The arguments made for GMO, vaccines, and climate change are made by the same circle of special interests and propagated by their immense media monopolies. Little they say can be independently verified by the army of sycophants that eagerly repeat their claims. Citing a “peer reviewed study” is different than reproducing an experiment’s results oneself.

Also troubling is that following the money to see just how valid or compromised such studies might be seems not to even factor into this tribe’s calculus. Their belief that scientists are infallible and incorruptible is as naive as those who believe their respective priest classes are likewise somehow above all others morally, spiritually, and intellectually.

National Geographic’s article will undoubtedly help reinforce this new, backwards religion of “science,” while leaving real science battered, abused, and a stolen shield carried by liars as they carry out misdeeds against others. And while this new religion will swear their “science” is the only answer – all others might hear is yet another and particularly shrill voice amongst many others drowning out the voice of real reason.

Article source:


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Feds: No link between pot and car crashes Mon, 23 Feb 2015 19:13:09 +0000 from The Hill

marijuana_gettyMarijuana use has not been found to increase the risk of car crashes, according to a new federal report.

Studying car accidents in Virginia Beach, Va., during a 20-month period ending in 2012, researchers randomly sampled 3,000 accident-involved drivers and found no evidence suggesting those with marijuana in their system were more prone to accidents, according to a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report released Friday.

When researchers controlled for factors such as age and gender, they found no evidence marijuana use increases accident risks. This was despite the fact that, in the study, drivers who tested positive for marijuana use happened to be involved in more accidents.

By comparison, the study found drivers with breath alcohol of .08 to be about four times more likely than sober drivers to be involved in accidents. Those nearly double the legal limit, at .15, were 12 times more likely to crash.

The study is billed as the largest ever conducted to assess the relative crash risk of drivers who consume alcohol compared to pot.

Read more here.


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Nationalism is a Poison Mon, 23 Feb 2015 19:11:17 +0000 Governments never fail to call on their flocks to “love their country,” and make any sacrifice on its behalf, “sacrifice” being defined by politicians.

from Reason

EscapeThe reason for the venom directed at those of us who question American sniper Chris Kyle’s status as a hero can be put into one word: nationalism.

Nationalism is a poison. It attacks the mind, short-circuits thinking, and makes self-destruction look appealing. Nationalism sows the seeds of hate and war. It makes the title warrior an honorific instead of the pejorative it ought to be.

We see naked ugly nationalism in many defenses of Kyle. Defenders appear to have but one operating principle: If Kyle was an American military man and the people he killed were not American, then he was a hero. Full stop. No other facts are relevant. It matters not that Kyle was a cog in an imperial military machine that waged a war of aggression on behalf of the ruling elite’s geopolitical and economic interests, that he did his killing on foreign soil, and that no Iraqi had come to the United States seeking to harm him or other Americans. (Contrary to what Kyle defenders seem to believe, not one Iraqi was among the 19 hijackers on 9/11, although had that been otherwise, the murder of millions of other Iraqis and the displacement of millions more would not have been justified.) All that apparently matters to many Kyle fans is that this man was born in America, joined the American military, and faithfully obeyed orders to kill people he called savages.

That is what nationalism does to a human being.

The ugliness of nationalism is often perceptible even by those who harbor it and commit terrible acts as a result. So they rationalize. They don’t openly cheer the killing of Iraqis because they are Iraqis (or Arabs or Muslims); rather they plead self-defense: if we don’t kill them, they will kill us. Kyle and his comrades were defending America and Americans’ freedom, his defenders say.

Read more here.


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“The Truth Is Unspeakable”: A Real American Sniper Unloads on “American Sniper” Mon, 23 Feb 2015 19:04:38 +0000 from AlterNet / Salon

sniperHearing Garett Reppenhagen describe how he felt the first time he shot someone is like listening to an addict talk about his first time injecting heroin. “I leveled my M-4, put him in my iron sights, and took three shots. One of them hit him center mass and he went down in the middle of the road. I had this instant sense of satisfaction, overwhelming excitement and pride. It was really kind of an ecstatic feeling that I had.”

I had just seen the film “American Sniper,” the revisionist propaganda piece of myth-making and nationalistic war porn being sold to us by Bradley Cooper, Clint Eastwood and screenwriter Jason Hall as an apolitical character study. I wanted to talk with an actual American sniper, and Garett was generous enough to pick up the phone. (He’s also written for Salon.)

Garett has a lot in common with Chris Kyle. Both entered the military at an older age; both spent endless hours on rooftops, in windows or in trash piles in Iraq, “doing their job”; both were in Iraq in 2004 hunting al-Qaida leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi; and both spent time after active duty trying to help veterans.

The similarities end there.

I’ll admit, listening to Garett talk about his first kill, taking place when he was ambushed and life presented him a clear choice — kill or be killed — I’m a touch envious. Life rarely offers us such moments of clarity. As haunted as Garett and others who struggle with post-traumatic stress disorder are because of events like this one, he was describing a moment so simple and so heightened because of that simplicity.

Read more here.


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‘Breathtaking’ adjustments to Arctic temperature record. Is there any ‘global warming’ we can trust? Mon, 23 Feb 2015 19:01:27 +0000 from Breitbart

Here’s a video that you absolutely must see.

Arctic-Reuters-640x480Not, I hasten to warn you, because it’s exciting, well-produced or informative; rather, because of the fascinating light it sheds on the debate about global warming in general and also, in particular, on the ongoing controversy about whether organisations like NASA and NOAA are playing fast and loose with the world’s temperature data sets.

According to the video’s creator and star, Dr Kevin Cowtan, the latter suggestion is a nonsense. Using charts of South American and global temperatures, he painstakingly refutes suggestions by Christopher Booker and also (though tragically I don’t get a mention) by me that there is anything suspect, let alone corrupt or fraudulent, in the adjustments that NASA and NOAA have been making to the raw temperature data from weather stations around the world.

If you stumbled on it by accident on YouTube I think you’d be quite persuaded. Cowtan’s tone is soft and reasonable; the science, as he presents it, seems to stack up: a) there are perfectly valid reasons for these adjustments, to do with homogenising the raw data when it looks out of kilter with neighbouring but possibly more accurate weather stations, and with the changing nature of measuring equipment and b) the adjustments are, in any case, minor – altering the raw data by no more than 3 per cent.

When you Google “Dr Kevin Cowtan” he appears reassuringly neutral in this affair. He works in the Department of Chemistry at the University of York, his current speciality being X-ray crystallography. A proper scientist, then, with no dog in this fight. Or so it looks until you scroll down a bit and see that his other area of research is “climate science.”

My climate science research focuses primarily on problems which are relevant to the public understanding of climate science. With my colleague Robert Way I have been investigating biases in historical temperature record from weather stations. Our primary work concerns temperature change over the past two decades. The main temperature record providers show a slowdown in the rate of warming over this period, however when biases in the temperature record are taken into account, we find that part of the slowdown disappears.

I am also involved in climate science communication, and am contributing to a massive online course run by the University of Queensland. I can offer undergraduate projects in this area for students who are interested to develop science communication skills.

So, not a neutral party after all then, but someone who depends for part of his livelihood on the lavish funding available in academe for those who promote the climate “consensus.” Perhaps, in the interests of full disclosure, he might have mentioned this detail on his YouTube biography. But I mean that only as a very mild and largely inconsequential criticism. What matters is not what Cowtan does for a living (“the motive fallacy”) but whether or not he has got his facts right.

And according to this counterblast from Dave Burton – a US computer programmer, sea level specialist and IPCC expert reviewer on AR5 – he hasn’t.

Burton’s key point is this: where Cowtan claims that all NOAA’s adjustments have done is increased warming by a modest 3 per cent, in actuality they have increased it by 35 per cent. So, far from Cowtan’s assessment that these adjustments are “inconsequentially tiny”, they are in fact quite massively distorting.

Might it be that they reached such wildly different conclusions by using different data? Er, no. Burton reached his conclusions by creating a spreadsheet with decadal data digitized from the exact graph used in Cowtan’s video.

Now I appreciate that in the context of the broader climate debate this might seem a trivial dispute. But I’ve been at this game long enough to be able to assure you that these faux rebuttals like the one offered by Cowtan are absolutely integral to the ongoing survival of the alarmist ‘consensus.’

As far as the warmist propaganda machine is concerned it really doesn’t matter two hoots whether or not Cowtan has got his facts right. What matters is that whenever the inconvenient subject of doctored temperature data crops up again, the alarmists have their ready-made get out. From a proper actual scientist. So he must know – right?

You can be sure that, if it hasn’t already, Cowtan’s dodgy rebuttal video will soon be linked to by the usual warmist sockpuppeteers in the comment threads below every relevant article. What none of them will mention, of course, is the Burton counter-rebuttal to the Cowtan rebuttal. Integrity has never been these people’s strong point. It’s winning the propaganda war that counts.

Meanwhile, in the real world, the case for a fraud trial against the climate data record gatekeepers seems to be getting stronger and stronger.

Paul Homewood, the blogger who noticed the discrepancies with the Paraguay temperature records, has now turned his attention to the Arctic region. His conclusion after studying the charts before and after is that the scale and geographic range of these adjustments is “breathtaking.”

In nearly every Arctic station from Greenland in the West to Siberia in the East, the data has been adjusted to make the warm period in the 1930s look cooler than it actually was. This, of course, has the effect of making the Twentieth Century warming look much more dramatic than the raw data would suggest.

Will this scandalous apparent evidence-tampering ever get much coverage in the mainstream media? It certainly ought to. Think about it: if Homewood (and Anthony Watts and Steven Goddard, et al) are correct, then what it essentially means is that the entire global warming scare has been sold to us on a false prospectus.

But it won’t, of course, because the mainstream media – in large part, at least – remains wedded to the Man Made Global Warming orthodoxy and therefore only really likes to run stories that prove how totally wrong, evil, and swivel-eyed climate change deniers are.

For example, this story in Nature, which sought to explain away one of the most embarrassing problems the warmist camp has been suffering of late: the abject failure of their fancy computer models to have predicted the planet’s failure to warm since 1998.

According to the lead author of this widely reported study, one Jochem Marotzke of the Max Planck Institute, it dealt a fatal blow to the sceptics’ case that the warmists’ computer models were a waste of space.

Unfortunately for Marotzke, his case has now, in turn, been demolished in this article by Nic Lewis.

Professor Gordon Hughes, one of the statisticians who reviewed and confirmed Lewis’s findings has commented thus:

“The statistical methods used in the [Marotzke] paper are so bad as to merit use in a class on how not to do applied statistics. All this paper demonstrates is that climate scientists should take some basic courses in statistics and Nature should get some competent referees.”

Damning indeed.

But here’s a prediction. The rebuttal won’t receive nearly the coverage that Marotzke’s original inept paper did.


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Vigilant Mom Took Matters into Her Own Hands, Set Up Sting Operation, Busts Child Molester Cop Mon, 23 Feb 2015 18:47:25 +0000 from TFTP

mom-busts-cop-for-abusing-his-daughterMoundsville, West Virginia – 26-year-old police officer Benjamin Davis was recently forced to resign after a concerned mother exposed him as a child molester in her very own independent online sting operation.

Davis allegedly sexually assaulted a 15-year-old girl, and when the girl’s mother found out about what happened, she created a fake online profile so she could gather proof.

In her profile, the mother posed as a 17-year-old girl and had the caption “cops rule” in the description of her main photo. The mother convinced Davis that she was an underage girl and that she was interested in developing a sexual relationship with him.

“She created this account, and basically Mr. Davis answered that, and she was posing as a 17-year-old female in the Marshall County area. They began chatting with each other and planned to meet at some point,” State Police Sgt. Mathew Adams told reporters.

When she had enough evidence on Davis, the woman reportedly revealed herself as the victim’s mother and told him, “your actions will make people trust cops even less.”



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5 Reasons Why Leftists Should Defend Russia Sat, 21 Feb 2015 09:02:17 +0000 611ed_2012-06-18T191906Z_01_WHT16_RTRIDSP_3_MEXICO-G20February 20, 2015 (Eric Draitser – NEO) – As tensions between the US and Russia have increased in the last year, so too has the polarization of public opinion. While the western corporate media has reverted to its formerly antagonistic, Cold War era attitude toward Russia – predictably radicalizing much of western public opinion, infusing the discourse with a decidedly Russophobic bias – it has increasingly been left to those on the political margins to deconstruct the false narrative, expose the Empire’s agenda, and defend the right of sovereign nations to act independent of western diktats.

And it is here, on the political margins, where many are willing to speak out against the US agenda in Ukraine and beyond, where the real fight for hearts and minds is taking place. The political mainstream will simply go along with the narratives presented to it by the Empire’s compliant media, thus ensuring its continued impotence and irrelevance to policy. However, a loud chorus of critics, dissidents, and anti-imperialist voices is becoming increasingly impossible to ignore.

And while on the far right libertarians and paleoconservatives are engaged in their own internal conflict over support for Russia and President Putin, so too is there an internal, quasi-ideological confrontation taking place on the left.

Many self-proclaimed “leftists” have merely transposed their anti-Soviet politics into an anti-Russian ideological posture, which sees in Russia both an embrace of capitalism and a desire for imperial revanchism. In this way, such groups (numerous on what passes for the “organized Left”) run interference for the political establishment, serving to dilute the potency of an anti-imperialist message through internecine conflict, demonization, and sectarianism. They proclaim that there is nothing about Russia worth defending for leftists. But is this true?

Here are a few reasons why those on the left who argue that Russia is “no better than the US” are either plainly ignorant, or they have ulterior motives:

1. Opposing US-NATO. Any self-described “leftist” should immediately question their own position when they find themselves on the same side with Washington and NATO on questions of foreign policy, war and peace. Russia has consistently (and with increasing assertiveness in the last few years) opposed the Empire’s agenda in various corners of the globe.

In Syria, Russia (with China following its lead) has become the leading global voice of resistance to the US-NATO-Israel-GCC agenda that has destroyed the lives of hundreds of thousands of innocent men, women, and children. Exercising its veto power at the UN Security Council, Russia has prevented a US-led war on Syria at least twice, each time supplying important intelligence information that cast doubt on the US narrative that conveniently blamed Assad for every single atrocity in that foreign-backed war on his country.

In Ukraine, Russia has effectively ended the eastward march of NATO expansion, drawing its red line, and demonstrating to the world that the once subservient “non-Western” developing economies will not be made into mere supplicants subject to the whims of power brokers in Washington, London, and on Wall St. Moreover, Russia’s rejection of the US-instigated coup in Ukraine, and its subsequent support for the rebels of Donetsk and Lugansk, has demonstrated to the world that western soft power is not some inexorable force, but is instead a carefully manipulated political weapon that can be blunted with sufficient planning and popular resistance.

2. BRICS, SCO, and “Multi-Polarity.” Russia is, along with China, the driving force behind the establishment, and continued development, of non-Western international forums such as the BRICS grouping, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, the Eurasian Economic Union, and a handful of others. These platforms for international cooperation have one important feature in common: they are not dominated by the United States.

Since the dissolution of the Soviet Union, nearly every major international institution has, in one way or another, been dominated by the United States. From its political hegemony in the United Nations, to the levers of its economic dominance in the IMF, World Bank, and other international financial institutions, to its global military capabilities in the form of NATO and similar military architecture, the United States has acted as judge, jury, and executioner around the globe. In effect, this could best be described as US global hegemony. Put in slightly more traditional, though no less accurate, leftist terminology, this could rightly be called US imperialism.

And so, why would anyone who truly believes in the political, moral, and ethical bankruptcy of US imperialism not want to support those forces rising globally to challenge it? It is seemingly a “no-brainer” that those who believe US hegemony and imperialism to be one of the scourges of the planet should be promoting any forces providing a counterweight to it. And yet somehow many leftists are convinced – partly, I would argue, from a decades long ideological and political decay coupled with the cumulative psychological effects of multi-generational propaganda and red-baiting – that Russia today is no better or worse than the US, merely a rival. Of course, this sort of anti-historical analysis is silly, if not dangerous. Considering the US global military footprint in nearly every country, its influence and power manifested in myriad ways all over the globe, its perpetual wars, etc., only a fool could make such a comparison with a straight face and then ask to be taken seriously.

3. Opposition to Shock Therapy and Disaster Capitalism. A primary preoccupation of many on the Left has been to oppose the twin evils of IMF “shock therapy” and “disaster capitalism,” both fundamental parts of what has come to be known as the “Washington Consensus.” These phenomena include privatizing and selling for scrap the institutions of the state once it enters into political and/or economic collapse while, simultaneously, demanding “economic liberalization,” which is merely coded language for austerity on the one hand, and plunder on the other. Such policies can really only be implemented in times of great crisis and near total collapse, either from political, economic, or even natural disasters. It has been done countless times, from Chile in 1973 to New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, to Haiti still today.

However, the most infamous, and globally significant, example of this sort of shock therapy and disaster capitalism came in Russia in the 1990s. There, the institutions of the one-time superpower were stripped of their most valuable component parts and sold on world markets, primarily to US and European investors through the intermediaries of a parasitical class that has come to be known as the “Russian oligarchs.” This formation of a new capitalist economic elite on the wreckage of a formerly socialist (the degree to which the Soviet Union was truly ‘socialist’ is not going to be debated here) state is the quintessential template for how disaster capitalism works. Those on the left who seemingly opposed these policies in Latin America and elsewhere somehow conveniently forget the tough road that Russia has had to travel to claw its way back to global relevance.

Or their argument goes that one set of oligarchs was simply replaced by another set dominated by President Putin. Naturally, they conveniently leave out the part about re-nationalization of certain vital industries, restarting Russian economic production, raising standards of living from the deplorable state of the early 90s, improved infrastructure, medical services, and so on. All these things, you know, the material conditions of life for millions of people, somehow become irrelevant when set against a seemingly moribund orthodoxy.

4. WWII, The Holocaust, and Defending Historical Memory. Since the end of the Soviet Union, many right wing, reactionary, and often fascist, tendencies have emerged throughout the former Soviet bloc. These movements, far from preaching “conservative values” in any way recognizable in the West, rather root their politics in a vehement hatred of the Soviet Union/Russia and communism in general. Their hatred however is not manifested in some search for historical truth, but rather in an insidious attempt to rewrite history, casting themselves and their fascist antecedents as “patriots struggling against Bolshevism.”

This whitewashing of history is being vigorously promoted by the US and many of its European toadies who, for political reasons, want the historical narrative to be written in such a way as to make an equivalence between the Soviets/communism and the Nazis/fascism. It does not take exceptional perceptive powers to see the agenda behind this. In making such an equivalence, the US is then able to present itself as the great hero of the 20th Century, having defeated the “twin evils” of fascism and communism. Of course, such historical fiction is what passes for truth these days in the West.

Perhaps this agenda, long understood by many on the Left, though increasingly forgotten by the 21st Century ‘Left’, goes a long way to explaining the seemingly limitless support that the West provides to fascists in Ukraine where, just as more than 70 years ago, fascists are mobilized to counter the Soviets/Russians. Of course, it should be remembered that the Ukrainian Nazis, followers of the degenerate collaborator Bandera, care not that Russia is not communist, as for them it is the “Moskals” (pejorative term for Russians) that must be “cleansed from the nation.” It is this blind hatred of Russia that makes them the darling of the US, which is the primary reason why they are described as “nationalists” and not rightly as Nazis.

The Holocaust is also critical to this story. As the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz by the Red Army was just celebrated, perhaps it is worthwhile to examine just how much history has been erased. It was, after all, the multi-national Soviets (Russians, Ukrainians, Belarusians, Kazakhs, etc.) who liberated most of the concentration camps, including the infamous Auschwitz, only to find that 70 years later, Russia is not invited to commemorate the event. In the Baltic states, as in Ukraine, you hear talk of monuments commemorating the “heroes” who “fought communism.” But who are these heroes? And when did they “fight communism”? That part is conveniently left out of the story, lest the veil of historical amnesia be lifted to reveal that these are monuments to Nazi collaborators and other fascists.

So, these are monuments to perpetrators and participants in one of the worst genocides in history, one that attempted to cleanse Jews, Romani “Gypsies”, homosexuals, the mentally handicapped, and other “undesirables” from the face of the earth. In cities like Lviv, the very existence of the Holocaust is denied, let alone the city’s heinous role in it. There was no rounding up of Jews in the streets. There was no cheering for the Nazi invaders. There was no collaboration. Or so they would like us to believe. And the US and Europe allow this narrative to fester, like an infection spreading through the body politic of Europe.

Only Russia is countering this historical erasure, reminding everyone that their “Great Patriotic War” was the salvation of Europe, the salvation for millions of Jews, the salvation of freedom. This clashes with the Russophobia, creating a sort of cognitive dissonance that has become all too pervasive in recent years.

5. Political Support for Victims of US Imperialism. There is an undeniable trend manifesting itself in recent years, namely that countries under assault by the Empire now have a friend, if only for political expediency, in Russia. As Moscow has become more assertive in its foreign policy, it has consistently begun placing itself as the defender of nations being attacked. So, Russia has been the lone power (with China following Russia’s lead) blocking US aggression against Syria. Russia has extended a friendly hand to DPRK (North Korea). Russia has maintained comradely relations with Venezuela, Bolivia, Nicaragua, and Ecuador. Russia had continued expanding its political, economic, and military cooperation with Iran. These are not insignificant developments as they represent a growing awareness both in Moscow and around the world that Russia is willing to act as a counterweight to US geopolitical ambitions and hegemony.

Of course, Russia has self-interested reasons for doing this, as all states do in their political decisions. However, it is equally true that Russia increasingly sees its role as a defender of countries victimized by the US-EU-NATO order.

The importance of this assertiveness in defending such states is perhaps most clearly illustrated by the negative example: Libya. In 2011 Russia, under then President Medvedev, chose not to veto UNSC Resolution 1973 which authorized a “No Fly Zone” in Libya which, to no one’s surprise, was immediately transformed into a de facto authorization for war. Russia’s refusal to veto the measure – a decision Medvedev has since admitted was regrettable – is a principal reason why the US-NATO were able to carry out their vicious war against Libya, topple Gaddafi, throw that country into chaos, and destabilize the whole region. What if Russia would have vetoed and there would have been no resolution? Would the Libyan state still exist, rather than being the chaotic failed state it is today? Would all those lethal weapons have fallen into the hands of Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), Boko Haram, and other terror groups? Would North Africa be as dangerous as it is today? The answers are painfully self-evident.

Russia is vital to maintaining stability and some semblance of imperial restraint on the West. Its steadily stronger responses to the US and Europe demonstrate that perhaps, finally, the Russian political elite are beginning to realize this. Perhaps they have finally understood that rather than constantly waxing poetic about their “Western partners” and looking for any way to further integrate themselves into a Western-dominated system, they must strike out on their own, blaze their own trail, and show some backbone in the face of the ever-present US boot on the neck.

If it is true that Russia’s political elite have finally recognized their own global importance, the world will benefit. Hopefully, some on the so-called Left will also come to this realization. If not, then they should cease to call themselves anti-imperialists, and instead admit what they really are…the left flank of the Empire.

Eric Draitser is an independent geopolitical analyst based in New York City, he is the founder of and OP-ed columnist for RT, exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.

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