The Post 9/11 Era and The “Global War on Terrorism”: “You are Either with Us, or with the Terrorists”

Global Research, September 20, 2019
Guns and Butter

The tragic events of September 11, 2001 constitute a fundamental landmark in American history. a decisive watershed, a breaking point. Millions of people have been misled regarding the causes and consequences of 9/11.

September 11 2001 opens up an era of crisis, upheaval and militarization of American society.

A far-reaching overhaul of US military doctrine was launched in the wake of 9/11.

Endless wars of aggression under the humanitarian cloak of “counter-terrorism” were set in motion. 

September 11, 2001 marks the onslaught of the “Global War on Terrorism” (GWOT), used as a pretext and a justification by the US and its NATO allies to carry out a “war without borders”, a global war of conquest.

Guns and Butter, WBAI  Radio, New York

click here (audio)

https://www.wbai.org/archive/program/episode/?id=5854

The transcript of this interview will be published shortly

***

At eleven o’clock, on the morning of September 11, the Bush administration had already announced that Al Qaeda was responsible for the attacks on the World Trade Center (WTC) and the Pentagon. This assertion was made prior to the conduct of an indepth police investigation.

CIA Director George Tenet stated that same morning that Osama bin Laden had the capacity to plan  “multiple attacks with little or no warning.”

That same evening at 9:30 pm, a “War Cabinet” was formed integrated by a select number of top intelligence and military advisors. And at 11:00 pm, at the end of that historic meeting at the White House, the “War on Terrorism” was officially launched.

Amply documented but rarely mentioned by the mainstream media, Al Qaeda is a creation of the CIA going back to the Soviet- Afghan war. This was a known fact, corroborated by numerous sources including official documents of the US Congress, which the mainstream media chose to either dismiss or ignore. The intelligence community had time and again acknowledged that they had indeed supported Osama bin Laden, but that in the wake of the Cold War: “he turned against us”.

Where was Osama bin Laden on September 11, 2001?

Is there any proof to the effect that Osama bin Laden, the bogeyman, coordinated the 9/11 attacks as claimed in the official 9/11 narrative?

According to CBS news (Dan Rather, January 28, 2002), “Enemy Number One” was admitted to the urology ward of a Pakistani military hospital in Rawalpindi on September 10, 2001, courtesy of America’s indefectible ally Pakistan. He could have been arrested at short notice which would have “saved us a lot of trouble”, but then we would not have had an Osama Legend, which has fed the news chain as well as presidential speeches in the course of the last 18 years.

1. Osama bin Laden could not reasonably have coordinated the 9/11 attacks from his hospital bed;

2. The hospital was under the jurisdiction of the Pakistani Armed Forces, which has close links to the Pentagon. Osama bin Laden’s whereabouts were known to both the Pakistani and US military.

 U.S. military and intelligence advisers based in Rawalpindi. were working closely with their Pakistani counterparts. Again, no attempt was made to arrest America’s best known fugitive. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld claimed, at the time, that the whereabouts of Osama bin Laden were unknown. According to Rumsfeld:  “Its like looking for a needle in a stack of hay”.

October 7, 2001: Waging America’s 9/11 War of Retribution against Afghanistan

The immediate response of the US and its allies to the 9/11 attacks was to the declare a war of retribution against Afghanistan on the grounds that the Taliban government was protecting “terror mastermind” Osama bin Laden. By allegedly harboring bin Laden, the Taliban were complicit, according to both the US administration and NATO, for having waged an act of war against the United States.

Parroting official statements, the Western media mantra on September 12, 2001 had already approved the launching of “punitive actions” directed against civilian targets in Afghanistan. In the words of William Saffire writing in the New York Times: “When we reasonably determine our attackers’ bases and camps, we must pulverize them — minimizing but accepting the risk of collateral damage” — and act overtly or covertly to destabilize terror’s national hosts”.

This decision was taken by the Bush-Cheney war cabinet in the evening of September 11, 2001. It was based on the presumption, “confirmed” by the head of the CIA that Al Qaeda was behind the attacks.

On the following morning, September 12, 2001, NATO’s Atlantic Council meeting in Brussels, endorsed the Bush administration’s declaration of war on Afghanistan, invoking Article 5 of the Washington Treaty.

An act of war by a foreign nation (Afghanistan) against a member of the Atlantic Alliance (the USA) is an act of war against all members under NATO’s doctrine of collective security. Under any stretch of the imagination, the attack on the World Trade Center and Pentagon cannot be categorized as an act of war by a foreign country. But nobody seemed to have raised this issue.

Meanwhile, on two occasions in the course of September 2001, the Afghan government –through diplomatic channels– offered to hand over Osama Bin laden to US Justice. These overtures were turned down by president Bush, on the grounds that America “does not negotiate with terrorists”.

The war on Afghanistan was launched 26 days later on the morning of October 7, 2001. The timing of this war begs the question: how long does it take to plan and implement a major theater war several thousand miles away. Military analysts will confirm that a major theater war takes months and months, up to a year or more of advanced preparations. The war on Afghanistan was already in the advanced planning stages prior to September 11, 2001, which begs the question of foreknowledge of the 9/11 attacks.

The repeal of civil liberties in America was launched in parallel with the bombing and invasion of Afghanistan, almost immediately following 9/11 with the adoption of the PATRIOT legislation and the setting up of a Homeland Security apparatus, under the pretext of protecting Americans. This post-911 legal and institutional framework had been carefully crafted prior to the 9/11 attacks.

Al Qaeda is a US Intelligence Asset

Important to the understanding of 9/11, US intelligence is the unspoken architect of “Islamic terrorism” going back to the heyday of the Soviet-Afghan war.

Bin Laden was 22 years old and was trained in a CIA sponsored guerrilla training camp. Education in Afghanistan in the years preceding the Soviet-Afghan war was largely secular. With religious textbooks produced in Nebraska, the number of CIA sponsored religious schools (madrasahs) increased from 2,500 in 1980 to over 39,000.

The Pentagon Wants More Control Over the News. What Could Go Wrong?


The Pentagon is using a moral panic over “fake news” to gain influence over the domestic news landscape

By Matt Taibbi

September 11, 2019 “Information Clearing House” –  If there’s a worse idea than the Pentagon becoming Editor-in-Chief of America, I can’t remember it. But we’re getting there:

From Bloomberg over Labor Day weekend:

Fake news and social media posts are such a threat to U.S. security that the Defense Department is launching a project to repel “large-scale, automated disinformation attacks,” as the top Republican in Congress blocks efforts to protect the integrity of elections.

One of the Pentagon’s most secretive agencies, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), is developing “custom software that can unearth fakes hidden among more than 500,000 stories, photos, video and audio clips.”

Once upon a time, when progressives still reflexively distrusted the military, DARPA was a liberal punchline, known for helping invent the Internet but also for developing lunatic privacy-invading projects like LifeLog, a program to “gather in a single place just about everything an individual says, sees, or does.”

DARPA now is developing a semantic analysis program called “SemaFor” and an image analysis program called “MediFor,” ostensibly designed to prevent the use of fake images or text. The idea would be to develop these technologies to help private Internet providers sift through content.

It’s the latest in a string of stories about new methods of control over information flow that should, but for some reason do not, horrify every working journalist.

From the Senate dragging Internet providers to the Hill to demand strategies against the sowing of “discord,” to tales of hundreds of Facebook sites zapped for “coordinated inauthentic behavior” following advice by government-connected groups like the Atlantic Council, it’s been clear the future of the information landscape is going to involve elaborate new forms of algorithmic regulation.

Stories about the need for such technologies are always couched as responses to the “fake news” problem. Unfortunately, “fake news” is a poorly-defined, amorphous concept that the public has been trained to fear without really understanding.

The term surged into public view three years ago. Experts insisted Macedonian troll farms and pranksters like the late Paul Horner (who once conned Fox News into doing a story that Barack Obama was funding a Muslim culture museum) had an enormous impact on Trump’s victory.

Had they? When “fake news” first became “a thing,” as media critic Adam Johnson put it in The Nation three years ago, I was skeptical.

Fake news has a long history in America. Its most pernicious incarnation is never the work of small-time scam artists. The worst “fake news” almost always involves broad-scale deceptions foisted on the public by official (and often unnamed) sources, in conjunction with oligopolistic media companies, usually in service of rallying the public behind a dubious policy objective like a war or authoritarian crackdown.

From the sinking of the Maine in 1898, to rumors of a union-led socialist insurrection before the Palmer raids in 1919, to the Missile Gap in the late fifties and early sixties (here is the CIA’s own website admitting that one was “erroneous”), to the Gulf of Tonkin lie that launched the Vietnam War, to the more recent WMD fiasco, true “fake news” is a concerted, organized, institutional phenomenon that involves deceptions cooked up at the highest levels.

 

The other “fake news” – the dubious panic over which began in November-December of 2016 – is a strange, hybrid concept that mixes fear of fever-swamp conservative lunacies with satire, Russian propaganda, legitimate dissent, and other content.

The most infamous example usually cited is Pizzagate, in which Hillary Clinton and campaign chief John Podesta were falsely said to be running a pedophile ring out of the basement of a Washington pizza restaurant. The hoax carried import because a 28 year-old North Carolinian named Edgar Maddison Welch was idiot enough to shoot up the joint in response.

But the other specific examples cited of “fake” news most often cited are patently absurd: that the Pope or the Amish endorsed Donald Trump, that Hillary Clinton sold weapons to ISIS, that an FBI agent investigating Clinton had died in a house fire (a story broken by the nonexistent “Denver Guardian”), that the Democrats paid protesters to heckle Trump events, etc.

The idea that these fake tales had a major impact in 2016 is absurd on its face. They didn’t change things any more than ALIEN BACKS CLINTON swayed the 1992 election.

It was laughable beyond belief to see stories in outlets like the New York Times and the Washington Post taking seriously the notion that small-time hoaxers like Horner — who was trying to sucker Trump fans to websites so he could make maybe ten grand a month off click ads – were a major threat to national security. (That some cited Horner’s own claim of responsibility for Trump’s election was even more preposterous).

When officials calling for a crackdown talk about “fake news,” you’ll often see them conflating examples of provably false stories with true stories circulated or interpreted in undesirable ways: the Clinton email scandal, the Uranium One story, the Podesta email leak, etc.

Even a controversy about Hillary Clinton’s health, cited by Ohio State University researchers as an example of the pernicious impact of fake news, was an amalgam of true and fake.

There was indeed wild speculation on the Internet and by goons like Sean Hannity about Clinton suffering from seizures or dementia. This was mixed in with real events like a 2012 collapse that caused a concussion, the subsequent discovery of a blood clot in Clinton’s brain (ABCnews.com called it “life threatening” in a headline), and Clinton’s September, 2016 collapse at a 9/11 memorial event.

The New York Times, CNN, CBS, the Washington Post and other reputable outlets covered the latter episode in great detail. As Vox noted at the time, this turned an online conspiracy theory into a “mainstream debate.”

If there’s a fake news story out there, it’s the fake news panic itself. It has the hallmarks of an old-school, WMD-style propaganda campaign.

It includes terrifying pronouncements by unnamed “intelligence officials,” unprovable, overblown, or outright fake statistical assertions about the threat (like the oft-cited claim that fake election news had more engagement than real news), open conflation of legitimate domestic dissent with foreign attack, and routine dismissal of experts downplaying the problem (here are two significant studies suggesting the “fake news” phenomenon is overstated).

Of course, the final, omnipresent ingredient in most major propaganda campaigns is the authoritarian solution. Here, it’s unelected, unsupervised algorithmic control over media. We’ve never had a true news regulator in this country, yet the public is being conditioned now to accept one, without thinking of the consequences.

The most enormous issue posed by the modern media landscape is the industry’s incredible concentration, which allows a handful of private platforms – Facebook, Twitter, Google – to dominate media distribution.

This makes it possible to envisage direct levers of control over the public’s media habits that never existed back when people got much of their news from local paper chains with individual distribution networks. We’ve already seen scary examples of misidentified foreign subversion, from the Washington Post’s repeat editorials denouncing Bernie Sanders as a useful idiot for the Kremlin to the zapping of hundreds of domestic political sites as “coordinated inauthentic behavior.”

What if the same people who can’t tell the difference between Truthdig and Pravda get to help design the new fake news algorithms? That’s a much bigger worry than the next Paul Horner or even, frankly, the next Russian Facebook campaign. While Donald Trump is in the White House, progressives won’t grasp how scary all of this is, but bet on it: In a few years, we’ll all wish we paid more attention when the Pentagon announced it wanted in on the news regulation business.

This article was originally published by “Rolling Stone 

 

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/52241.htm

Venezuela: A Cocaine Super-Highway to the US?

Global Research, April 17, 2019
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Venezuela under Chavez and Maduro is in the forefront of combatting illicit drugs. More on this below.

The US is the world’s leading facilitator of the illicit trade – working with drug cartels, notably through the CIA. Major US banks profit hugely from laundering dirty money.

In his book titled “The Politics of Heroin: CIA Complicity in the Global Drug Trade,” Alfred McCoy documented CIA and US government complicity in drugs trafficking at the highest official levels.

It continues today in Asia, Europe, the Middle East, South and Central America, facilitating the global supply of illicit drugs.

Peter Dale Scott explained that

“(s)ince at least 1950, there has been a global CIA-drug connection operating more or less continuously” to this day.

“The global drug connection is not just a lateral connection between CIA field operatives and their drug-trafficking contacts.”

“It is more significantly a global financial complex of hot money uniting prominent business, financial and government, as well as underworld figures,” a sort of “indirect empire (operating alongside) existing government.”

America is one of numerous countries involved, the most harmful and disturbing because of its imperial power and global reach, influencing or affecting virtually everything worldwide.

The CIA relies on involvement in drugs trafficking for the significant amount of its revenues.

Heroin, cocaine, and other illicit drugs produce hundreds of billions of dollars in annual revenues – a US government-supported bonanza, facilitated by corrupt officials, the CIA, organized crime, US and Western financial institutions, as well as other corporate interests.

Pre-9/11, Afghanistan under Taliban rule eradicated 94% of opium production, according to UN estimates, one of various reasons why Bush/Cheney launched naked aggression on the country in October 2001.

One objective was increasing opium production. Afghanistan was transformed into the world’s largest supplier – at one point producing more than total global demand, now accounting for at least most of it.

Disinformation, Big Lies, and fake news are what CNN does best – the most distrusted name in television news, a lying machine masquerading as a news organization, its operation a virtual conspiracy against truth-telling on vital issues.

On April 17, its propaganda piece on Venezuela falsely accused the country of “creat(ing) a cocaine super-highway to the US” – a bald-faced Big Lie, turning truth on its head claiming the following:

“Cocaine trafficking from Venezuela to the United States is soaring (sic)…(Unnamed) US and other regional officials say (sic) it’s Venezuela’s own military and political elite who are facilitating the passage of drugs in and out of the country on hundreds of tiny, unmarked planes (sic).”

Diosdado Cabello, the leader of Venezuela’s National Constituent Assembly and…Nicolas Maduro’s number two, was (sic) sanctioned in May 2018 for being ‘directly involved in narcotics trafficking activities’ ” – referring to Tareck El Aissami, Venezuelan executive vice president from January 2017 – mid-June 2018.

He’s currently Minister of Industries and National Production. Responding to fabricated charges, he said the following:

“When I headed the public security corps of my country, in 2008 — 2012, our fight against drug cartels achieved the greatest progress in our history and in the western hemisphere, both in terms of the transnational drug trafficking business and their logistics structures.”

“During those years, the Venezuelan anti-drug enforcement authorities under my leadership captured, arrested and brought 102 heads of criminal drug trafficking organizations not only to the Venezuelan justice but also to the justice of other countries where they were wanted.”

Bush/Cheney officials falsely accused Venezuela of non-cooperation against narco-trafficking the US supports worldwide.

Annually since then, Washington falsely claimed Venezuela hasn’t fulfilled its obligations under international narcotics agreements.

The Treasury Department sanctioned around two dozen Venezuelan nationals and over two dozen entities – falsely accusing them of narco-trafficking, including Vice President Aissami.

In response to false charges against him, he also wrote a public letter to US Treasury Secretary Mnuchin, saying in part:

US “interest groups not only lack any evidence to demonstrate the extremely serious accusations against me, but they also have built a false-positive case in order to criminalize – through me – the Government of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, a country that is decidedly waging a war on transnational drug trafficking business.”

Dozens of “captured drug lords… were promptly deported to the USA (and) Colombia, in accordance with the requests made by the authorities of each country and in compliance with the international agreements on the fight against organized crime, facts formally acknowledged by the US and Colombian authorities.”

“…Venezuela has always been recognized by the United Nations as a territory free of drug production…(C)onnections between (the US) Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) (and) criminal drug organizations (are) very well documented…”

“The extraordinary progress made by the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela in the fight against drug trafficking – which I directed in my capacity as head of the public security corps – was acknowledged by (the UN, and other) international organizations…”

Venezuelan efforts in combatting illicit drugs trafficking are recognized “in the archives of the Judicial bodies of the United States and Colombia, which also acknowledged the efforts that I headed against organized crime, which is unprecedented in our hemisphere.”

Venezuelan law mandates interdiction of drugs-trafficking aircraft in the nation’s airspace. Its efforts “destroyed, disabled or brought down over 100 aircraft belonging to the drugs transport structure from Colombia and neighboring countries illegally flying over our territory.”

“Venezuela is waging an all-out war against drugs because it is a cross-border crime against humanity…”

“Venezuela also fights drug cartels because our country and our people are victims of drug trafficking, particularly of the powerful Colombian illegal drug industry, the main supplier of the drugs that flood the streets of the United States and Europe” – facilitated by the nation’s narco-terrorist authorities at the highest levels.

“Today more drugs are brought into the United States than ever before, while a corrupt and legal powerful financial structure legitimizes and recycles dirty money from this international illegal activity, which deprives thousands of American young people of their life and future.”

The so-called US war on drugs is all about facilitating illicit trafficking, along with criminalizing and mass imprisoning ordinary Americans for possession of small amounts for their own use.

The US is ground zero for the illicit drugs trade. Venezuela is the hemisphere’s leader in combatting it.

Will false US charges of illicit drugs trafficking against Venezuela be used by the Trump regime as a pretext for military intervention to topple Maduro and eliminate the country’s social democracy?

Everything tried so far failed. While direct US military intervention is unlikely, put nothing past extremists in charge of Trump’s geopolitical agenda.

They’re hellbent to get another US imperial trophy, along with gaining control over Venezuelan world’s largest oil reserves and other valued resources.

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Award-winning author Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. He is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG)

His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.

Venezuela: A Cocaine Super-Highway to the US?

Fake Washington Post Copies Announcing Trump’s Resignation Handed Out in Washington, DC

Global Research, January 17, 2019

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Taking the art of fake news to new heights, a non-profit has circulated mock Washington Post issues near the White House, telling readers that President Donald Trump fled to Crimea on the back of women-led protests.

Activists giving out fake copies of the Washington Post commuters were spotted near the White House on Wednesday morning. Vigilant readers immediately alerted the newspaper, which said that the copies, dated May 1, 2019, were “not Post products” and that it was “looking into this.”

Adrienne Shih👩🏻‍💻@adrienneshih

Hey @washingtonpost: Someone is passing out fake copies of the paper (top)? For comparison, a real issue of the Post below.

181 people are talking about this

The fake copies include an eye-catching headline for the lead story: “UNPRESIDENTED. Ending Crisis, Trump Hastily Departs White House,” complete with a picture of a glum Trump on his way to “slip in a private car in the wee hours of the morning.”

Washington Post PR

@WashPostPR

There are fake print editions of The Washington Post being distributed around downtown DC, and we are aware of a website attempting to mimic The Post’s. They are not Post products, and we are looking into this.

7,098 people are talking about this

The paper “reports” that Trump abruptly left his office at 3:15am on May 1, leaving a message on a napkin in the Oval Office that blamed “crooked Hillary,” the mysterious “Hfior,” and “the Fake News Media” for his flight. The report, meticulously mimicking the Washington Post’s source-based reporting style, cites “four White House aides” speaking on condition of anonymity, that they found the napkin two days before events took a dramatic turn.Trump’s fictional resignation and the subsequent swearing-in of Vice President Mike Pence, who instantly promises to keep as low a profile as possible, comes amidst “massive protests” staged by a grassroots movement with #MeToo as its backbone.

The protests are accompanied by a campaign of harassment against White House officials and Republican lawmakers, similar to what some liberal activists have been calling for in the real world. In what would be a dream come true for Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA), the fake newspaper says that officials’ “credit cards were declined repeatedly at bars and restaurants,” they were “openly heckled” or had “their order lost or bungled” and ultimately were forced to use aliases or feel “like pariahs” in their home cities.

The news of Trump’s resignation sparks a wave of celebrations across the globe, with European countries refusing to shelter him. The creators of the fake diligently stick to the Washington Post’s style, fanning the Russia collusion narrative just like their prototype by sending Trump to seek safe haven in Russia – namely, Crimea.

While there has been speculation that radical liberal political activist group MoveOn or CODEPINK, a women-led grassroots NGO, might be behind the stunt since they promoted the action, later in the day, The Yes Men, a progressive non-profit group, claimed responsibility in a press release.

“The story this paper tells is more reasonable than our current reality,” it cited one of the authors of the“report,”Onnesha Roychoudhuri, as saying. Co-author L.A. Kauffman argued that the fake is “anything but far-fetched” and “offers a blueprint to help us reclaim our democracy.”

Apart from the printed editions, the group made the paper available online at my-washingtonpost.com/ and democracyawakensinaction.org. In addition, it sent out emails from noreply@my-wahsingtonpost.com to notify readers.

While the actual Washington Post has distanced itself from the stunt, it later decided to play along, publishing an article referencing the one in the fake edition, telling about “The Bundle,” a set of 64 progressive bills aiming to make education free, guarantee employment, and make everyone eligible for Medicare.

The Washington Post

@washingtonpost

Today, activists passed out fake versions of The Post around D.C. The papers pointed to a fake website that included an article titled, simply, “A look at the 64 bills.”

We figured such an article might as well exist on our actual site.

So… here ya go. https://wapo.st/2FC3dlP 

Analysis | A look at the 64 Bills

There are currently 64 players listed on the Bills’ roster.

washingtonpost.com

429 people are talking about this

While the anti-Trump crowd has generally applauded the action, it also drew backlash, with many pointing out there is too much fake news around to churn out more, even accusing the Washington Post of playing along with Trump and Putin’s “authoritarian playbook.”

“This doesn’t help at all. We already have too much fake news floating around,” another wrote.

The Washington Post has been one of the favorite targets of Trump’s attacks on “fake news.” Last year, Trump’s trade adviser called the paper “fake news most of the time.”

The Yes Men co-founder Andy Bichlbaum defended the stunt, telling Wired it’s obvious that the websites and the copies are fake.

“If you look at the website, I think you might agree it would take someone very strange to spend much time believing it’s true,” he said.

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Featured image is from RT

 

Fake Washington Post Copies Announcing Trump’s Resignation Handed Out in Washington, DC

The Worst “Fake News” Articles of 2018: New York Times Claims Russia Influenced African-Americans in the 2016 U.S. Presidential Elections

Global Research, December 31, 2018

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If there was a Fake News of the Year Award, This New York Times article would be in the Top 5 category for running one of the worst stories and may I add, a conspiracy theory for 2018. On December 17th, The New York Times published an article titled ‘Russian 2016 Influence Operation Targeted African-Americans on Social Media’ has to be one of the most absurd pieces I’ve read this year.  Newsflash, you don’t need Russians or the Chinese or anyone else who is not on America’s good side to tell African-Americans what are the true colors of the Democratic party. Throughout their history, the Democratic party’s relationship with the African-American community even under America’s first African-American President, Barack Obama, (his mother Ann Dunham was white) has been catastrophic. The policies put forth by the Democratic Party (the Republicans can also share the blame as they have continued those same policies) has destroyed the African-American community.

Screengrab from The New York Times

It is also a fact that the U.S. holds the title for having one of the largest prison populations on the planet filled with mostly young African-American and Latino men. Former U.S. President and a life-long Democrat Bill Clinton imposed tough drug laws that effected young black men at unprecedented levels. Michelle Alexander’s ‘The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness’wrote about Bill Clinton’s federal “Three Strikes and you’re Out” law’ and the impact it had on the African-American community:

To the contrary, in 1992, presidential candidate Bill Clinton vowed that he would never permit any Republican to be perceived as tougher on crime than he. True to his word, just weeks before the critical New Hampshire primary, Clinton chose to fl y home to Arkansas to oversee the execution of Ricky Ray Rector, a mentally impaired black man who had so little conception of what was about to happen to him that he asked for the dessert from his last meal to be saved for him until the morning. After the execution, Clinton remarked, “I can be nicked a lot, but no one can say I’m soft on crime.” 

Once elected, Clinton endorsed the idea of a federal “three strikes and you’re out” law, which he advocated in his 1994 State of the Union address to enthusiastic applause on both sides of the aisle. The $30 billion crime bill sent to President Clinton in August 1994 was hailed as a victory for the Democrats, who “were able to wrest the crime issue from the Republicans and make it their own.” The bill created dozens of new federal capital crimes, mandated life sentences for some three-time offenders, and authorized more than $16 billion for state prison grants and expansion of state and local police forces. Far from resisting the emergence of the new caste system, Clinton escalated the drug war beyond what conservatives had imagined possible a decade earlier. As the Justice Policy Institute has observed, “the Clinton Administration’s ‘tough on crime’ policies resulted in the largest increases in federal and state prison inmates of any president in American history.”

Did President Obama’s Economic Model Help the African-American Community?

In a 2015 article written by Lauren Victoria Burke published by Black Press USA ‘Is Black America Better Off Under Obama?’ quoted what Obama said on December 19th, 2014 to Urban Radio Networks White House Correspondent April Ryan “Like the rest of America, Black America, in the aggregate, is better off now than it was when I came into office,” Burke response was “What planet African Americans are doing “better off” on is unknown. What is known is that President Obama is about to leave office with African Americans in their worst economic situation since Ronald Reagan. A look at every key stat as President Obama starts his sixth year in office illustrates that.” Burke described what some of the facts were in regards to the African-American community under Obama:

Unemployment. The average Black unemployment under President Bush was 10 percent. The average under President Obama after six years is 14 percent. Black unemployment, “has always been double” [that of Whites] but it hasn’t always been 14 percent. The administration was silent when Black unemployment hit 16 percent – a 27-year high – in late 2011. 

Poverty. The percentage of Blacks in poverty in 2009 was 25 percent; it is now 27 percent. The issue of poverty is rarely mentioned by the president or any members of his cabinet. Currently, more than 45 million people – 1 in 7 Americans – live below the poverty line. 

The Black/White Wealth Gap. The wealth gap between Blacks and Whites in America is at a 24-year high. A December study by PEW Research Center revealed the average White household is worth $141,900, and the average Black household is worth $11,000. From 2010 to 2013, the median income for Black households plunged 9 percent

Adding to Burke’s analysis is the study of the black child poverty rate in the U.S. compared to other groups. The Pew Research study released on July 14th, 2015 ‘Black child poverty rate holds steady, even as other groups see declines’suggested that children living in poverty across the U.S. declined as the economy improved. However, the poverty rate for black children did not change that much:

The share of American children living in poverty has declined slightly since 2010 as the nation’s economy has improved. But the poverty rate has changed little for black children, the group most likely to be living in poverty, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of Census Bureau data 

The study said that the child poverty rate for all other groups decreased while black children poverty rate did not change at all:

Overall, 20% of children in the U.S., or 14.7 million, lived in poverty in 2013 – down from 22%, or 16.3 million, in 2010. (Poverty in 2013 was defined as living in a household with an annual income below $23,624 for a family of four with two related children.) During this period, the poverty rate declined for Hispanic, white and Asian children. Among black children, however, the rate held steady at about 38%. Black children were almost four times as likely as white or Asian children to be living in poverty in 2013, and significantly more likely than Hispanic children

These are some of the facts that faced the African-American community under Obama. The majority of African-Americans I personally know in New York City don’t like the Republicans and I can assure you, they don’t like the Democrats that much either. With an increase of poverty and unemployment rates plus police shootings of young black men (many were unarmed individuals) across the United States under Obama, maybe that’s’ why many black people did not vote in the 2016 election for Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party.

In another report by Pew Research ‘Black Voter Turnout fell in 2016, even as a record number of Americans cast ballots’ said that although more than 137 million people voted in the 2016 elections, Black voter turnout decreased according to the report:

The black voter turnout rate declined for the first time in 20 years in a presidential election, falling to 59.6% in 2016 after reaching a record-high 66.6% in 2012. The 7-percentage-point decline from the previous presidential election is the largest on record for blacks. (It’s also the largest percentage-point decline among any racial or ethnic group since white voter turnout dropped from 70.2% in 1992 to 60.7% in 1996.) The number of black voters also declined, falling by about 765,000 to 16.4 million in 2016, representing a sharp reversal from 2012. With Barack Obama on the ballot that year, the black voter turnout rate surpassed that of whites for the first time. Among whites, the 65.3% turnout rate in 2016 represented a slight increase from 64.1% in 2012

So the low black voter turnout rate in the 2016 U.S. Presidential elections should not surprise anyone given the fact that their living standards have either remained the same or have gotten worst under the Obama administration. But The New York Times claims that the Russians influenced African-Americans through Instagram according to a joint investigation with New Knowledge, a Texas based cybersecurity company along with researchers from Columbia University and Canfield Research LLC:

“The Russian influence campaign on social media in the 2016 election made an extraordinary effort to target African-Americans, used an array of tactics to try to suppress turnout among Democratic voters and unleashed a blizzard of activity on Instagram that rivaled or exceeded its posts on Facebook, according to a report produced for the Senate Intelligence Committee”

The report adds new details to the portrait that has emerged over the last two years of the energy and imagination of the Russian effort to sway American opinion and divide the country, which the authors said continues to this day.

“Active and ongoing interference operations remain on several platforms,” says the report, produced by New Knowledge, a cybersecurity company based in Austin, Tex., along with researchers at Columbia University and Canfield Research LLC. One continuing Russian campaign, for instance, seeks to influence opinion on Syria by promoting Bashar al-Assad, the Syrian president and a Russian ally in the brutal conflict there

The report suggests that the Russians took advantage of African-Americans who had an interest regarding “black history, the Black Panther Party and Malcolm X”:

But the New Knowledge report gives particular attention to the Russians’ focus on African-Americans, which is evident to anyone who examines collections of their memes and messages.

“The most prolific I.R.A. efforts on Facebook and Instagram specifically targeted black American communities and appear to have been focused on developing black audiences and recruiting black Americans as assets,” the report says. Using Gmail accounts with American-sounding names, the Russians recruited and sometimes paid unwitting American activists of all races to stage rallies and spread content, but there was a disproportionate pursuit of African-Americans, it concludes.

The report says that while “other distinct ethnic and religious groups were the focus of one or two Facebook Pages or Instagram accounts, the black community was targeted extensively with dozens.” In some cases, Facebook ads were targeted at users who had shown interest in particular topics, including black history, the Black Panther Party and Malcolm X

Well there are many historical facts on what the Democratic party has done systematically to destroy the African-American community and many African-Americans understand this fact. Malcolm X understood what the Democratic Party was really about, read ‘What Did Malcolm X Really Think about the Democratic Party?’ which I wrote back in 2017. Let’s also take the history of abortions in the African-American community. For example, Eugenicist, a hero of the Democratic party (especially for Hillary Clinton) and founder of American Birth Control League which later would be renamed ‘Planned Parenthood’ Margaret Sanger (a Democratic Socialist) wrote a letter on December 10, 1939 to Dr. Clarence J. Gamble which she said “We don’t want the word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population…” Former Secretary of State and two time Democratic nominee, Hillary Clintonaccepted Planned Parenthood’s Margaret Sanger Award back in 2009 and praised the Eugenicist:

Now, I have to tell you that it was a great privilege when I was told that I would receive this award. I admire Margaret Sanger enormously, her courage, her tenacity, her vision … And when I think about what she did all those years ago in Brooklyn, taking on archetypes, taking on attitudes and accusations flowing from all directions, I am really in awe of her

This is just one part of Black history that adds insult to injury. An article by Walter B. Hoye III published on The Center for Urban Renewal and Education (CURE) titled ‘Abortion is the Single Negative Force on Black American Growth’explains how abortions have affected the African-American community:

Considering that the total current Black American population is about 42,000,000, the 20,350,000 Black American abortions are equal to 48.45% of the total Black American population. If not for abortion, the total Black American population would be approximately 62,350,000, or 48% greater than it is today.

This is based on an analysis of data from the U.S. Statistical Abstract for 2013 and the National Vital Statistics Report, Vol. 64, No. 1 dated January 15, 2015. This analysis was done recently by Dennis Howard, President of the Movement for a Better America who has written extensively on abortion demographics.

In 2015, there were an estimated 9,168,000 Black American women in their childbearing years between age 15 and 44 which make up around 14% of all women in that age group in the United States of America.

These women experienced:

Births: 621,679

Abortions: 423,000

Pregnancies: 1,044,679

Resulting in:

Abortions as a % of all pregnancies: 40.5%

Abortion rate per 1,000 women: 46.3

The high-rate of abortions among African-Americans introduced by the Democratic party is just another historical fact, but The New York Times says it’s Russian propaganda or what they call “Soviet Propaganda” that influenced African-Americans in the 2016 Presidential elections:

The report does not seek to explain the heavy focus on African-Americans. But the Internet Research Agency’s tactics echo Soviet propaganda efforts from decades ago that often highlighted racism and racial conflict in the United States, as well as recent Russian influence operations in other countries that sought to stir ethnic strife

The New York Times claims that the report by the Senate Intelligence community not only targets the Trump-Russia collusion theory, they also take a jab at Senator Bernie Sanders and the Green Party candidate, Jill Stein:

“While the right-wing pages promoted Mr. Trump’s candidacy, the left-wing pages scorned Mrs. Clinton while promoting Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont and Jill Stein, the Green Party candidate. The voter suppression effort was focused particularly on Sanders supporters and African-Americans, urging them to shun Mrs. Clinton in the general election and either vote for Ms. Stein or stay home.

Whether such efforts had a significant effect is difficult to judge. Black voter turnout declined in 2016 for the first time in 20 years in a presidential election, but it is impossible to determine whether that was the result of the Russian campaign”

The New York Times and the mainstream-media who work for the establishment in Washington, D.C. are becoming more ridicules, more conspiratorial by the day. Let’s be clear, the Democrats (and the Republican party in many cases) do not care about African-Americans or any other minority group including poor white communities. They just want your votes to stay in power.

Besides, according to people in the Democratic Party like Hillary Clinton who happened to praise former Ku Klux Klan leader Robert Byrd when he died in 2010 by saying “Today our country has lost a true American original, my friend and mentor Robert C. Byrd” she went on to say that “Senator Byrd was a man of surpassing eloquence and nobility. And I will remember him for many things, but most of all, for a heartfelt comment he made to me in the dark days following the attack on our country on 9/11.” Byrd’s legacy definitely rubbed off on Hillary Clinton because to her, all African-American’s look alike:

Hillary Clinton was trying to be funny by mocking the interviewer,  however, saying something like that is insulting to African-Americans even if it was only meant to be funny.  It is not.

The New York Times along with other mainstream-media outlets and the Democratic party are desperate to remove Trump from office and they are using any lie to do so.  Therefore, blaming Russia for everything is a joke, especially for those of us who know what the truth is.

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This article was originally published on the author’s blog site: Silent Crow News.

Featured image is from SCN

The Worst “Fake News” Articles of 2018: New York Times Claims Russia Influenced African-Americans in the 2016 U.S. Presidential Elections

 

CNN: Facts First, Just Not On Israel

pal-woman-shouting-at-israeli-invader
CNN firing commentator Marc Lamont Hill exposes yet another layer of mainstream media’s bias and lack of objectivity.

By Mariam Barghouti

December 03, 2018 “Information Clearing House” –    Last week, the US mainstream media demonstrated once again that it has a Palestine problem. CNN suspended the contract of commentator and Temple University Professor Marc Lamont Hill, after he gave a speech at the United Nations in which he criticised the Israeli occupation and the abuse of Palestinian rights.

Hill based his speech very much on facts. He cited Israeli laws that discriminate against Palestinians; the use of arbitrary violence by the Israeli security apparatus; the use of torture against Palestinian detainees; the denial of due process to Palestinians by Israeli courts; the restriction on movement in the occupied territories, etc – all violations that have been well-documented and condemned by the UN and a myriad of human rightsorganisations.

Yet CNN, which last year adopted a new slogan – “Facts first” – did not seem to agree with these facts. After pro-Israel organisations like the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) condemned the speech, the TV station was quick to sever its ties with Hill.

While CNN did not announce why it chose to do so, it is clear to many of us it caved in to pressure from pro-Israel groups. Hill was accused of being anti-Semitic for using the phrase “free Palestine from the river to the sea”, which supposedly is a “Hamas slogan” and a call for the destruction of Israel. Well, it is neither.


Conflating anti-Semitism
 with pro-Palestinian positions and criticism of Israel is not only ill-intentioned but also dangerous, as it does a disservice to Jews who have faced hate speech and hate attacks.Throwing accusations of anti-Semitism at people criticising Israel and supporting the Palestinian right to self-determination is a convenient tool of the Zionist lobby. But calling for the freedom of Palestinians and for the recognition of their rights is not anti-Semitic; it is pro-Palestinian.

In Palestine, the Israeli authorities have brought this tactic to the extreme and have already passed a number of laws curbing freedom of speech. This means that those of us who dare criticise Israeli policy or call for resistance to Israeli occupation, even if in the form of a poem, face the risk of imprisonment.

In the United States, those who do so clearly face the risk of being fired, as in the case of Professor Hill and as in the case of many others before him– and probably many others after. The way CNN (mis)handled this situation offers us an opportunity to discuss how media organisations succumbing to Israel’s campaign of silencing critics is particularly problematic.

For a long time, mainstream media organisations in the West, like the CNN, have been hiding behind the veneer of objectivity when it comes to issues such as the Palestinian struggle.

These outlets claim to be covering these issues objectively – applying certain procedures and high standards of verification that supposedly guarantee full and balanced reporting. With that grand declaration of objectivity, they then claim to present the true picture of what is going on. But they often don’t.

The language employed by many mainstream media networks in the West when reporting on Palestine is often imprecise and misrepresents certain objective realities. CNN and its peers often talk of a “conflict” between Palestinians and Israelis, skipping the fact that the latter are – legally and objectively speaking – occupiers. They talk of “contested lands” – as if there is no illegal settler-colonialism going on in Palestine, pushing Palestinians out of their land. They would often call the Israeli army’s violence against peaceful protesters “clashes” (as if the two sides are equal) and conveniently use the passive voice in titles reporting killings of Palestinians (as if Israeli soldiers were not the ones who shoot Palestinians dead).

Claiming objectivity but then, clearly using obfuscating language and intentionally skipping certain facts is not only damaging to the media profession but also spreads disinformation. The firing of Professor Hill has exposed once again this disingenuity, the apparent political bias, and perhaps even the fear of the Israeli lobby within Western mainstream media.

It also shows that even media institutions that claim to be fighting for freedom of speech, to be delivering “facts first”, to be “speaking truth to power” can also partake in the silencing of critical voices. What is particularly disconcerting, in this case, is that CNN is not only succumbing to political pressure and Israel’s speech policing policies but also perpetuating them – even if indirectly.

CNN is clearly not ready to take on the “controversial” topic of the Palestinian question and pursue “facts first”. Instead, it has chosen to stay on the political “safe side”: report only on certain events with bias, obscuring the real dynamic of relations between oppressor and oppressed and using a certain preset discourse.

Unfortunately, this “safe side” logic has also been adopted not only by media outlets but also by Western institutions – both academic and political ones – and even by governments. Just recall all those fake condemnations by political leaders in the West during Gaza’s Great March of Return, when in one day Israeli snipers shot dead more than 50 unarmed, peaceful Palestinian protesters and wounded hundreds of others, with local hospitals unable to cope. They all called on Israel to exercise “restraint” and threw in there for “balance” and “objectivity” a reference to Hamas, which killed no Israelis that day – or any other day of the march for that matter.

Those who do not stand on the “safe side” of things – people like Marc Lamont Hill – have been taking clear positions on Palestine, based on facts and critical thinking. They – like others throughout history who stood up for oppressed peoples’ rights – are vilified and viciously attacked, but they will persevere and continue to speak truth to power, objectively and factually.

Meanwhile, Western institutions (academic, media and others) will eventually have to engage in self-scrutiny because they are not only regularly succumbing to political pressures and adopting misrepresentations, but are also complicit in reproducing Israel’s policing and silencing strategies.

Mariam Barghouti is a Palestinian American writer based in Ramallah

This article was originally published by Al Jazeera” 

==See Also==

TV Host, Fired by CNN For Urging a Free Palestine, Apologizes: The speech raised a huge outcry leading to his dismissal from the media giant CNN.

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/50700.htm