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American Resistance To Empire

United States Re-Packaged Al Qaeda As ‘Khorasan Group’ To Sell Attack

United States Re-Packaged Al Qaeda As ‘Khorasan Group’ To Sell Attack

shadowproof

 

United States officials misled the public about a Syrian terrorist group, the Khorasan Group, in the run up to air strikes in the country in 2014. The group was not new, as officials suggested, but essentially a group of reinforcements for the country’s Al Qaeda affiliate.

In September 2014, just prior to a United States military strike in Syria, the mainstream media began reporting on the Khorasan Group.

Even close observers of the U.S. War on Terror were unaware such a group existed, let alone that it was so powerful as to “pose a more direct and imminent threat to the United States” than ISIS, as was attributed to anonymous U.S. government national security officials speaking to the Associated Press

The rest of the mainstream media echoed the AP in their reporting, and, suddenly, the homeland was facing a new existential threat. But, after the US strikes in Syria against the Khorasan Group, national security officials began offering a “more nuanced picture” on the threat that verged on being outright defensive.

Both FBI Director James Comey and Pentagon Spokesman John Kirby admitted their intelligence in Syria was weak, but stood by the claim that the group existed. Comey said, “What I could see concerned me very much that they were working toward an attack.” Kirby gave a better safe than sorry rationale for the attack: “We hit them. And I don’t think we need to throw up a dossier here to prove that these are bad dudes.”

Journalists began calling bullshit and wondering if the group even existed, let alone posed such an imminent and serious threat to the United States.

A recent interview conducted by Shadowproof brought back up some old questions about U.S. military operations in Syria and the Khorasan Group.  In our interview with veteran war reporter and terrorism expert Elijah Magnier, we asked if such a group existed and if they mattered. Magnier responded (around 42:15):

Shadowproof: Do you remember when Obama launched this bombing he talked about something called The Khorasan Group? […] Many experts were scratching their heads. […] Did you know who that group was? Are they still active?

Elijah Magnier: The Khorasan Group is, basically, the group that came from Khorasan. This is where Ayman al-Zawahiri is believed to be based and they form the old core of Al Qaeda who joined the emir of Jabhat al-Nusra—or Al Qaeda in Syria—following the request of Ayman al-Zawahiri himself, who asked all of Al Qaeda to join Julani, to support him and to support Al Qaeda in Syria.

So the core group of Al Qaeda, many elements of the core group, form what is called the Khorasan Group and this is what the United States was targeting. Yes, they were targeting genuine targets there and they were targeting elements that have a long list of activity against the West, against the United States and Europe and that were involved in different kinds of relationships with at the time with Bin Laden, Zawahiri, and in Yemen, and in other parts of the Middle East. So yes, they exist.

These details were completely left out of the explanation during the run up to the 2014 U.S. strikes in Syria. Rather than being a new separate, menacing group, the Khorasan Group were essentially seasoned reinforcements for the Al Qaeda affiliate in Syria, known as Jabhat al-Nusra (recently rebranded as Jabhat Fateh al-Sham).

Now, in 2017, the U.S. has changed course and is arming groups in alliance with the Al Qaeda affiliate. And, again, the U.S. mainstream press is mindlessly repeating government talking points. The only constant is bad journalism.

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Futurist Predicted Collapse of American Empire By 2020, Before Trump

johan-galtung

US Power Will Decline Under Trump–Futurist Johan Galtung

covert-geopolitics

 

Johan Galtung, a Nobel Peace Prize-nominated sociologist who predicted the collapse of the Soviet Union, warned that US global power will collapse under the Donald Trump administration.

The Norwegian professor at the University of Hawaii and Transcend Peace University is recognized as the ‘founding father’ of peace and conflict studies as a scientific discipline. He has made numerous accurate predictions of major world events, most notably the collapse of the Soviet Empire.

Written by Nafeez Ahmed Columnist

Back in 2000, Galtung first set out his prediction that the “US empire” would collapse within 25 years.

Galtung has also accurately predicted the 1978 Iranian revolution; the Tiananmen Square uprising of 1989 in China; the economic crises of 1987, 2008 and 2011; and even the 9/11 attacks—among other events, according to the late Dietrich Fischer, academic director of the European University Center for Peace Studies.

Back in 2000, Galtung first set out his prediction that the “US empire” would collapse within 25 years. After the election of President Bush, though, he revised that forecast five years forward because, he argued, Bush’s policies of extreme militarism would be an accelerant.

After the election of Trump, I thought it might be prudent to check in with Galtung to see how he was feeling about the status of his US forecast. Galtung told Motherboard that Trump would probably continue this trajectory of accelerated decline—and may even make it happen quicker. Of course, with typical scientific caution, he said he would prefer to see what Trump’s actual policies are before voicing a clear verdict.

The model

Galtung has doctoral degrees in both sociology and mathematics, and some decades ago developed a theory of “synchronizing and mutually reinforcing contradictions”, which he used to make his forecasts. The model was based on comparing the rise and fall of 10 historical empires.

In 1980, Galtung used his theoretical model to map the interaction of various social contradictions inside the Soviet empire, leading him to predict its demise within 10 years.

“Very few believed him at the time”, writes Dietrich Fischer in the main biography and anthology of Galtung’s works, Pioneer for Peace, “but it occurred on November 9, 1989, two months before his time limit, 1990.”

For the USSR, Galtung’s model identified five key structural contradictions in Soviet society which, he said, would inevitably lead to its fragmentation—unless the USSR underwent a complete transformation.

The model works like this: the more those contradictions deepen, the greater the likelihood they will result in a social crisis that could upend the existing order.

In the case of the USSR, the main structural contradictions were as follows: the working class was increasingly repressed and unable to self-organise through trade unions (ironic given the country’s Communist pretensions); the wealthier ‘bourgeoisie’ or elite had money to spend, but nothing to buy from domestic production, leading to economic stagnation; Russian intellectuals wanted more freedom of expression; minorities wanted more autonomy; and peasants wanted more freedom of movement.

The model works like this: the more those contradictions deepen, the greater the likelihood they will result in a social crisis that could upend the existing order.

Eventually, as the highly centralised structures of the Soviet empire were unable to accommodate these intensifying pressures, the top-down structures would have to collapse.

Galtung later began to apply his model to the United States. In 1996, he wrote a scientific paper published by George Mason University’s Institute for Conflict Analysis & Resolution warning that “the USA will soon go the same way as [previous] imperial constructions… decline and fall.”

Fascism?

But the main book setting out Galtung’s fascinating forecast for the US is his 2009 book, The Fall of the American Empire—and then What?

The book sets out a whopping 15 “synchronizing and mutually reinforcing contradictions” afflicting the US, which he says will lead to US global power ending by 2020—within just four years. Galtung warned that during this phase of decline, the US was likely to go through a phase of reactionary “fascism”.

He argued that American fascism would come from a capacity for tremendous global violence; a vision of American exceptionalism as the “fittest nation”; a belief in a coming final war between good and evil; a cult of the strong state leading the fight of good against evil; and a cult of the “strong leader”.

Galtung warned that during this phase of decline, the US was likely to go through a phase of reactionary “fascism”.

All of which, Galtung said, surfaced during the Bush era, and which now appear to have come to fruition through Trump. Such fascism, he told Motherboard, is a symptom of the decline—lashing out in disbelief at the loss of power.

Among the 15 structural contradictions his model identifies as driving the decline, are:

  • economic contradictions such as ‘overproduction relative to demand’, unemployment and the increasing costs of climate change;
  • military contradictions including rising tensions between the US, NATO, and its military allies, along with the increasing economic unsustainability of war;
  • political contradictions including the conflicting roles of the US, UN and EU;
  • cultural contradictions including tensions between US Judeo-Christianity, Islam, and other minorities;
  • and social contradictions encompassing the increasing gulf between the so-called ‘American Dream’, the belief that everyone can prosper in America through hard work, and the reality of American life (the fact that more and more people can’t).

Galtung’s book explores how the structural inability to resolve such contradictions will lead to the unravelling of US political power, both globally, and potentially even domestically.

Global collapse

Trump has made clear that he thinks US troops are still needed in Iraq and Afghanistan, and even proposed sending more troops to Iraq. He also said that we should have ‘grabbed’ the country’s oil. But he has also heavily (and incoherently) criticized US military policies.

Domestically, Trump has promised to deport 11 million illegal migrants, build a wall between the US and Mexico, compel all American Muslims to sign up to a government register, and ban all Muslim immigration to the US.

On the one hand, Trump might well offer an opportunity to avoid potential conflicts with great power rivals like Russia and China—on the other, he may still, stupidly, fight more unilateral wars and worsen domestic contradictions relating to minorities.

For Galtung, Trump’s incoherent policy proposals are evidence of the deeper structural decline of US power: “He [Trump] blunts contradictions with Russia, possibly with China, and seems to do also with North Korea. But he sharpens contradictions inside the USA”, such as in relation to minority rights.

On the one hand, Galtung said, Trump might well offer an opportunity to avoid potential conflicts with great power rivals like Russia and China—on the other, he may still, stupidly, fight more unilateral wars and worsen domestic contradictions relating to minorities.

Motherboard asked Galtung whether he thinks Trump would speed up his forecast of “collapse”, or slow it down.

Even if we give Trump the benefit of the doubt, he said, and assume that he “prefers solving underlying conflicts, particularly with Russia, to war—in other words for the US not be imperial—then yes, that still speeds up the decline from above, and from the center… Of course, what he does as a President remains to be seen.”

But what exactly is collapsing?

“An empire is more than violence around the world,” said Galtung. “It is a cross-border structure with a center, the imperial country, and a periphery, the client countries. The point about imperialism is to make the elites in the periphery do the jobs for the center.”

The center country may be a dictatorship or a democracy. So for Galtung, the collapse of the US empire comes “when the periphery elites no longer want to fight US wars, no longer want to exploit for the center.”

For Galtung, a key sign of collapse would be Trump’s attitude to NATO. The President-elect has said he would be happy to see NATO break-up if US allies aren’t willing to pay their dues. Trump’s ‘go it alone’ approach would, Galtung said, accelerate and undermine US global empire at the same time.

“The collapse has two faces,” said Galtung. “Other countries refuse to be ‘good allies: and the USA has to do the killing themselves, by bombing from high altitudes, drones steered by computer from an office, Special Forces killing all over the place. Both are happening today, except for Northern Europe, which supports these wars, for now. That will probably not continue beyond 2020, so I stand by that deadline.”

US break-up?

But this global collapse, also has potential domestic implications. Galtung warned that the decline of American power on the world stage would probably have a domestic impact that would undermine the internal cohesion of the United States:

“As a trans-border structure the collapse I am thinking of is global, not domestic. But it may have domestic repercussion, like white supremacists or even minorities like Hawaiians, Inuits, indigenous Americans, and black Americans doing the same, maybe arguing for the United States as community, confederation rather than a ‘union’.”

Galtung warned that the decline of American power on the world stage would probably have a domestic impact that would undermine the internal cohesion of the United States.

Galtung is not pessimistic about his forecasts, though. Having always seen the collapse of the “US empire” as inevitable—much like the collapse of the Soviet empire—he argues that there is real opportunity for a revitalization of the “American republic.”

The American republic is characterised by its dynamism, its support for the ideals of freedom and liberty, its productivity and creativity, and its cosmopolitanism toward the ‘other.’

Might Trump help revitalize the American republic?

Galtung’s answer is, perhaps, revealing: “If he manages to apologize deeply to all the groups he has insulted. And turn foreign policy from US interventions—soon 250 after Jefferson in Libya 1801—and not use wars (killing more than 20 million in 37 countries after 1945): A major revitalization! Certainly making ‘America Great Again’. We’ll see.”

That’s a big if.

http://motherboard.vice.com/read/us-power-will-decline-under-trump-says-futurist-who-predicted-soviet-collapse

Neo-Nazi Mass Murderer Whines Over Being In Prison

[91 people killed–The first thing he did was shoot the cutest girl he saw–Eyewitness to VG]

Norwegian mass murderer Breivik in human rights appeal case

 

FILE - In this Tuesday, March 15, 2015 file photo, Anders Behring Breivik gestures as he enters a courtroom in Skien, Norway. Breivik, who killed 77 people in a bombing and shooting rampage in 2011, is returning to court this week as the government appeals a ruling that his isolation in prison breaches the European Convention on Human Rights. (Lise Aserud, NTB Scanpix via AP, File)

FILE – In this Tuesday, March 15, 2015 file photo, Anders Behring Breivik gestures as he enters a courtroom in Skien, Norway. Breivik, who killed 77 people in a bombing and shooting rampage in 2011, is returning to court this week as the government appeals a ruling that his isolation in prison breaches the European Convention on Human Rights. (Lise Aserud, NTB Scanpix via AP, File)

Norwegian mass murderer Anders Behring Breivik, who killed 77 people in a bombing and shooting rampage in 2011, is returning to court this week as the government appeals a ruling that his isolation in prison breaches the European Convention on Human Rights.

The 37-year-old right-wing extremist, who admitted to the killings that Prime Minister Erna Solberg has called “one of the darkest days in Norwegian history,” was convicted of mass murder and terrorism in 2012 and given a 21-year prison sentence that can be extended for as long as he’s deemed dangerous to society. Legal experts say he will likely be locked up for life.

Breivik has often complained about his treatment and prison conditions.

Last year, he sued the government, saying his solitary confinement, frequent strip searches and the fact that he was often handcuffed during the early part of his incarceration violated his human rights. He is held in isolation in a three-cell complex where he can play video games, watch TV and exercise. He has also complained about the quality of the prison food, having to eat with plastic utensils and not being able to communicate with sympathizers.

Related News…

  • Norwegians Mourn the Lives Lost in Terror Attacks

  • Al Qaeda trains Norwegian for terror attack?

The government has rejected his complaints, saying he is treated humanely despite the severity of his crimes and that he must be separated from other inmates for safety reasons.

But, in a surprise ruling in April, the Oslo District Court said “the prohibition of inhuman and degrading treatment represents a fundamental value in a democratic society. This applies no matter what — also in the treatment of terrorists and killers.” It also ordered the government to pay Breivik’s legal costs of 331,000 kroner ($41,000). However, it dismissed Breivik’s claim that his right to respect for private and family life was violated by restrictions on contacts with other right-wing extremists.

Breivik had meticulously planned the July 22, 2011, attacks, setting off a car bomb outside the government headquarters in Oslo, killing eight people and wounding dozens. He then drove to the island of Utoya, some 40 kilometers (25 miles) away, where he opened fire on the annual summer camp of the left-wing Labor Party’s youth wing. Sixty-nine people there were killed, most of them teenagers, before Breivik surrendered to police.

At the time of the attacks, Breivik claimed to be the commander of a secret Christian military order plotting an anti-Muslim revolution in Europe. Investigators found no trace of the group. He now describes himself as a traditional neo-Nazi who prays to the Viking god Odin, saying his earlier crusader image was just for show. He made a Nazi salute to journalists at the start of his human rights case last year.

Breivik’s lawyer, Oystein Storrvik, said his client was satisfied with last year’s verdict and that prison authorities would have to lift some of his restrictions, adding that he expects Breivik to be allowed to meet other people in prison.

But the massacre shocked the oil-rich, quiet Scandinavian country and many feel Breivik has already had too much attention and should be consigned to the history books.

Mette Yvonne Larsen, a lawyer who represented Breivik’s victims and their families, says her official line is “not to comment because we don’t want to give him (Breivik) any visibility.”

The appeals case opens on Tuesday in a makeshift courtroom in the gym of Skien prison in southern Norway, where Breivik is incarcerated. Six days have been reserved for the hearings before the Borgarting Court of Appeals hands down a verdict in the case.

Trump Facing Difficulty Staffing Pentagon w/Bush’s and Obama’s Generals

Facebook’s New “Fact Checkers” Include A Former Hooker, A Porn Star, and A Dominatrix

Snopes: Facebook’s New “Fact Checkers” Include A Former Hooker & Porn Star, Plus A Dominatrix

freedomoutpost

 

 

 

Since Facebook has hired Snopes.com as one of their new “fact checkers” to put an end to the spread of “fake news” across Facebook, wouldn’t this be a great time to meet the folks behind Snopes? Fasten your seatbelts for this one. How many times have you been talking to someone who rebutted something you said with a comment like, “But Snopes.com said that isn’t true,” or something to that effect, as if Snopes.com somehow is an authority on anything?

For folks to rely so heavily on what Snopes.com says, I can’t help but wonder how many people think Snopes.com consists of several floors in a Manhattan sky rise with dozens of employees working tirelessly around the clock to “fact check” everything that runs counter to the liberal ideology. Well, as you’re about to learn, nothing could be farther from the truth. In the video below, you’ll learn that the three employees that make up Snopes.com, are an embezzler, a hooker, and a dominatrix… and no… this is not a joke…

Fellowship of the Minds writes:

According to independent investigative journalist and former U.S. Navy officer and NSA employee Wayne Madsen, the fact-check website Snopes.com — which Facebook is usingto combat so-called “fake news” — is a CIA operation.

Now, thanks to a report by the UK’s Daily Mail, we know Snopes not only peddles CIA propaganda, it is a sleazy outfit, run by an embezzler, a former hooker/porn star, and a dominatrix.

 Reporting for Daily Mail, Dec. 21, 2016, Alana Goodman points out that Snopes.com will benefit from Facebook using the site as an arbiter of truth by determining what’s “fake news.” Now a DailyMail.com investigation has exposed Snopes.com’s sleazy underbelly.

(1) Owner is an embezzler

Owner and CEO David Mikkelson is accused by his former wife and Snopes‘ co-founder, Barbara Mikkelson, of embezzlement — using company money for prostitutes.

The Mikkelsons founded Snopes in 1995. In 2015, their marriage ended in divorce, but both stayed on as co-owners of Snopes, which is registered under its legal name of Bardav, Inc. and were its sole board members. In the time since the couple split, David has run the company’s day-to-day operations, and authored a number of Snopes‘ “fact checks”.

Despite their divorce, the Mikkelsons are embroiled in a bitter and lengthy legal dispute,accusing each other of financial impropriety.

Barbara accuses David of embezzlement and “boondoggling” tax arrangements; David says Barbara took millions from their joint accounts and bought property in Las Vegas.

In court filings, Barbara, 57, accuses David, 56, of “raiding the corporate business Bardav bank account for his personal use and attorney fees” without consulting her:

Embezzling $98,000 from the company over the course of four years “which he expended upon himself and the prostitutes he hired”.

Embezzling nearly $10,000 from their business accounts between April and June of 2016 to pay for trips for him and his “girlfriend” — a 24-day “personal vacation” in India this year, and his girlfriend’s plane ticket to Buenos Aires. David and his attorneys countered that the India visit was a legitimate business trip for setting up a fact-checking website in India, and to get a sense of the culture. He said he went to Buenos Aires to attend an international fact-checking conference.

(2) Snopes’ Administrator is a hooker

Snopes’ “administrative assistant” is Elyssa Young, 47, whom David Mikkelson married last month in Washington state.

Young is a long-time “escort” — a euphemism for call girl or prostitute — and porn star who has worked for decades under the name “Erin O’Bryn”. Although Young lists her job as “administrative assistant at Snopes” on LinkedIn, her escort websites and Twitter accounts still appear to be active. Online reviews suggest that she was working in Las Vegas as an escort as recently as March 2015.

On her escort website, Young calls herself “an elite and discreet companion” who“understands that while pleasure and passion may be explored in the bedroom, it is hardly the only place. I only accept a very limited number of new lovers because I’m only seeking long term engagements.” For those “long term engagements,” Young request “donation for my time, companionship, and entertainment” — “non-negotiable” rates of $1,200 for a minimum four hours and $5,000 for 24 hours.

Although the Mikkelsons have denied that Snopes is politically partisan, David’s new wife has a background in politics. In 2004 in Hawaii, Elyssa Young ran for U.S. Congress as a Libertarian, during which she handed out ‘Re-Defeat Bush’ cards and condoms stamped with the slogan “Don’t get screwed again”. She wrote on her campaign website: “Let’s face it, I am an unlikely candidate. I fully admit that I am a courtesan.” In the end she pulled in 3% of the vote, losing the seat to Democratic incumbent Neil Abercrombie — a pal of Obama who, in 2011, admitted he couldn’t find Obama’s long-form birth certificate. (See also “Hawaii Dept. of Education can’t find Obama’s school records“)

(3) Snopes fact-checker is a dominatrix

One of Snopes‘ lead fact-checkers, Kim LaCapria, is a former sex-and-fetish blogger who went by the pseudonym “Vice Vixen”.

She described her blog as a lifestyle website “with a specific focus on naughtiness, sin, carnal pursuits, and general hedonism and bonne vivante-ery,” and regularly provided intimate advice and reviewed sex toys, including a vibrating wand that “drives boys mad” — “If you are doing something to your fella, and you apply this to the base of his cash-and-prizes while you carry on, he will scream and perhaps cry.”

LaCapria, aka Vice Vixen, also recommended one book with the review: “How to Tell A Naked Man What To Do seems like the perfect how-to for the dominatrix-in-waiting, or any girl looking to get in touch with her domme side. Mine, I wish I could shut her up sometimes, but there you go.” In others posts, LaCapria claimed to be “addicted to smutty HP [Harry Potter] fanfic.” Describing her day-off activities on another blog, she wrote that she “played scrabble, smoked pot, and posted to Snopes. That’s what I did on my day ‘on,’ too.”

David Mikkelson told the Dailymail.com that Snopes does not have a “standardized procedure” for fact-checking” since the nature of this material can vary widely” and that the process “involves multiple stages of editorial oversight, so no output is the result of a single person’s discretion.” He also said the company has no set requirements for fact-checkers because the variety of the work “would be difficult to encompass in any single blanket set of standards. Accordingly, our editorial staff is drawn from diverse backgrounds; some of them have degrees and/or professional experience in journalism, and some of them don’t.”

Financial details of Snopes.com disclosed in court papers show that the website is highly profitable:

In February 2016, it had gross advertising sales of $216,199 and a gross profit of $150,599.50.

Snopes’ expenses include:

$240,000 annual salary to David Mikkelson, in addition to $500,000 a year “draw on profits” to both David and Barbara in the divorce settlement. David is seeking a pay rise to “2x or 3x” the $240,000, court documents show, although he was prepared to settle for $360,000.

$53,640 annual salary to Brooke, Binkowski, editor of Snopes.

Snopes has enabled the Mikkelsons’ accumulation of person wealth to the tune of:

A $205,000 home in Las Vegas

A $1,525,000 home in Calabasas, Los Angeles

Two savings accounts with $3,064,993

A cash account with $81,785

A stock account with $47,588

IRAs valued at $455,101

A a baseball card collection which was not valued.

To conclude, if you use Snopes for “fact-checking,” not only are you swallowing CIA and Democrat propaganda, you are contributing to the wealth of the sleazy Mikkelsons and staff.

Article posted with permission from The Last Great Stand

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