Hillary Clinton and Her Hawks

Exclusive: Focusing on domestic issues, Hillary Clinton’s acceptance speech sidestepped the deep concerns anti-war Democrats have about her hawkish foreign policy, which is already taking shape in the shadows, reports Gareth Porter.

By Gareth Porter

As Hillary Clinton begins her final charge for the White House, her advisers are already recommending air strikes and other new military measures against the Assad regime in Syria.

The clear signals of Clinton’s readiness to go to war appears to be aimed at influencing the course of the war in Syria as well as U.S. policy over the remaining six months of the Obama administration. (She also may be hoping to corral the votes of Republican neoconservatives concerned about Donald Trump’s “America First” foreign policy.)

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at NATO conference in Munich, Germany, Feb. 4 (Official Defense Department photo)

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at NATO conference in Munich, Germany, Feb. 4 (Official Defense Department photo)

Last month, the think tank run by Michele Flournoy, the former Defense Department official considered to be most likely to be Clinton’s choice to be Secretary of Defense, explicitly called for “limited military strikes” against the Assad regime.

And earlier this month Leon Panetta, former Defense Secretary and CIA Director, who has been advising candidate Clinton, declared in an interview that the next president would have to increase the number of Special Forces and carry out air strikes to help “moderate” groups against President Bashal al-Assad. (When Panetta gave a belligerent speech at the Democratic National Convention on Wednesday night, he was interrupted by chants from the delegates on the floor of “no more war!”

Flournoy co-founded the Center for New American Security (CNAS) in 2007 to promote support for U.S. war policies in Iraq and Afghanistan, and then became Under Secretary of Defense for Policy in the Obama administration in 2009.

Flournoy left her Pentagon position in 2012 and returned to CNAS as Chief Executive Officer.  She has been described by ultimate insider journalist David Ignatius of the Washington Post, as being on a “short, short list” for the job Secretary of Defense in a Clinton administration.

Last month, CNAS published a report of a “Study Group” on military policy in Syria on the eve of the organization’s annual conference.  Ostensibly focused on how to defeat the Islamic State, the report recommends new U.S. military actions against the Assad regime.

Flournoy chaired the task force, along with CNAS president Richard Fontaine, and publicly embraced its main policy recommendation in remarks at the conference.

She called for “using limited military coercion” to help support the forces seeking to force President Assad from power, in part by creating a “no bombing” zone over those areas in which the opposition groups backed by the United States could operate safely.

In an interview with Defense One, Flournoy described the no-bomb zone as saying to the Russian and Syrian governments, “If you bomb the folks we support, we will retaliate using standoff means to destroy [Russian] proxy forces, or, in this case, Syrian assets.”  That would “stop the bombing of certain civilian populations,” Flournoy said.

In a letter to the editor of Defense One, Flournoy denied having advocated “putting U.S. combat troops on the ground to take territory from Assad’s forces or remove Assad from power,” which she said the title and content of the article had suggested.

But she confirmed that she had argued that “the U.S. should under some circumstances consider using limited military coercion – primarily trikes using standoff weapons – to retaliate against Syrian military targets” for attacks on civilian or opposition groups “and to set more favorable conditions on the ground for a negotiated political settlement.”

Renaming a ‘No-Fly’ Zone

The proposal for a “no bombing zone” has clearly replaced the “no fly zone,” which Clinton has repeatedly supported in the past as the slogan to cover a much broader U.S. military role in Syria.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Panetta served as Defense Secretary and CIA Director in the Obama administration when Clinton was Secretary of State, and was Clinton’s ally on Syria policy. On July 17, he gave an interview to CBS News in which he called for steps that partly complemented and partly paralleled the recommendations in the CNAS paper.

“I think the likelihood is that the next president is gonna have to consider adding additional special forces on the ground,” Panetta said, “to try to assist those moderate forces that are taking on ISIS and that are taking on Assad’s forces.”

Panetta was deliberately conflating two different issues in supporting more U.S. Special Forces in Syria. The existing military mission for those forces is to support the anti-ISIS forces made up overwhelmingly of the Kurdish YPG and a few opposition groups.

Neither the Kurds nor the opposition groups the Special Forces are supporting are fighting against the Assad regime.  What Panetta presented as a need only for additional personnel is in fact a completely new U.S. mission for Special Forces of putting military pressure on the Assad regime.

He also called for increasing “strikes” in order to “put increasing pressure on ISIS but also on Assad.” That wording, which jibes with the Flournoy-CNAS recommendation, again conflates two entirely different strategic programs as a single program.

The Panetta ploys in confusing two separate policy issues reflects the reality that the majority of the American public strongly supports doing more militarily to defeat ISIS but has been opposed to U.S. war against the government in Syria.

poll taken last spring showed 57 percent in favor of a more aggressive U.S. military force against ISIS. The last time public opinion was surveyed on the issue of war against the Assad regime, however, was in September 2013, just as Congress was about to vote on authorizing such a strike.

At that time, 55 percent to 77 percent of those surveyed opposed the use of military force against the Syrian regime, depending on whether Congress voted to authorize such a strike or to oppose it.

Shaping the Debate

It is highly unusual, if not unprecedented, for figures known to be close to a presidential candidate to make public recommendations for new and broader war abroad. The fact that such explicit plans for military strikes against the Assad regime were aired so openly soon after Clinton had clinched the Democratic nomination suggests that Clinton had encouraged Flournoy and Panetta to do so.

Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. (Photo by Lorie Shaull, Wikipedia)

Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. (Photo by Lorie Shaull, Wikipedia)

The rationale for doing so is evidently not to strengthen her public support at home but to shape the policy decisions made by the Obama administration and the coalition of external supporters of the armed opposition to Assad.

Obama’s refusal to threaten to use military force on behalf of the anti-Assad forces or to step up military assistance to them has provoked a series of leaks to the news media by unnamed officials – primarily from the Defense Department – criticizing Obama’s willingness to cooperate with Russia in seeking a Syrian ceasefire and political settlement as “naïve.”

The news of Clinton’s advisers calling openly for military measures signals to those critics in the administration to continue to push for a more aggressive policy on the premise that she will do just that as president.

Even more important to Clinton and close associates, however, is the hope of encouraging Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, which have been supporting the armed opposition to Assad, to persist in and even intensify their efforts in the face of the prospect of U.S.-Russian cooperation in Syria.

Even before the recommendations were revealed, specialists on Syria in Washington think tanks were already observing signs that Saudi and Qatari policymakers were waiting for the Obama administration to end in the hope that Clinton would be elected and take a more activist role in the war against Assad.

The new Prime Minister of Turkey, Binali Yildirim, however, made a statement on July 13 suggesting that Turkish President Recep Yayyip Erdogan may be considering a deal with Russia and the Assad regime at the expense of both Syrian Kurds and the anti-Assad opposition.

That certainly would have alarmed Clinton’s advisers, and four days later, Panetta made his comments on network television about what “the next president” would have to do in Syria.

Gareth Porter is an independent investigative journalist and winner of the 2012 Gellhorn Prize for journalism. He is the author of the newly published Manufactured Crisis: The Untold Story of the Iran Nuclear Scare.

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83 comments for “Hillary Clinton and Her Hawks

  1. Realist
    July 29, 2016 at 7:39 am

    Why is there no longer any anti-war movement in the United States? Back in 2008, we the people were fed up with Dubya’s wars of aggression in Iraq and Afghanistan and voted to elect purported peacenik candidate Barack Obama. He promised to end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and bring the troops home. For these vacuous promises he was given the Nobel Peace Prize to stimulate even more reconciliation with the rest of the world which this country sought to dominate by force.

    Instead of beating our swords into ploughshares after making nice with Islamic culture in the Middle East, Barack Obama instead transmogrified into Barracks Obomber and initiated further conflicts in Libya, in Yemen, in Syria, and even in the territory of our supposed ally Pakistan, using flying robots from a distance to kill indiscriminately. Obomber did not apologise for his duplicity, rather he bragged of waging bombing campaigns in seven different countries!

    Then he had his minions, who were appointed by and took marching orders from his Secretary of State, Killary Rodham Clinton to foment an anti-Russian coup d’etat right in Russia’s frontyard, a country that was the historical birthplace of Russia itself, part of the same culture for a thousand years, and intimately tied together in business, commerce, religion and defense with Russia. The chief minion, Victoria Nuland, was wife of arch-Neocon Robert Kagan (primary author of PNAC, which was the manifesto that was used to justify Dubya’s war of aggression against Iraq), assistant to Dubya’s main warlord V.P. Dick Cheney, and high-profile neo herself. Nuland had been appointed to the high post of Assistant Secretary of State personally by Killary Clinton and then kept in office by Obomber long after Clinton herself resigned so she could run for the presidency.

    The coup in Ukraine metastasized into a secession of Crimea from Ukraine by an overwhelming plebicite, and its re-union with Russia, of which it had been a part for over 300 years. The people there, mostly ethnic Russians were aghast at the repressions meted upon other ethnic Russians, who made up the majority of the populations in the Odessa region and the Donbass, by the Ukrainian ultra-nationalists centered in Kiev and holding all the levers of power after having been capriciously recognised as the legitimate government by Washington. War crimes, including burning people alive, by the Kiev fascists brought any resistance in Odessa to a quick end, and the province has been under the administration of Georgian war criminal Mikheil Saakashvili, an outsider willing to use force to quell dissent and apparently meeting the approval of Washington.

    Donbass persists in trying to gain some small degree of self-rule in a federal republic, since it cannot manage to either gain its complete independence or re-unite with Russia (of which it was also a part for over 300 years). In fact, agreements were signed between the leaders of Donbass and Ukrainian president Poroshenko which promised such self-rule, but the Kiev regime has reneged on its promises and the Western world, led by Washington, persists in personally blaming Russian president Vladimir Putin for Poroshenko’s duplicity.

    Rather than meet its obligations, the Kiev regime has relentlessly bombarded the major cities of the Donbass, Donetsk and Lugansk, killing many thousands of innocent fellow citizens of Ukraine. For this treachery, Kiev is rewarded with billions of dollars in IMF loans and untold amounts of military aid and advisors from NATO countries.

    NATO forces now sit poised at Russia’s border, ready to attack that nation on orders from Barracks Obomber at any moment of his choosing, at least while he remains president over the remainder of his term. Killary Clinton is waiting in the wings, almost certain to initiate this deed as she has frequently and vociferously expressed her hatred of Russia and its leader Putin, referring to him in no uncertain terms as the “new Hitler.”

    This trip line for World War III has not remained localised around Crimea or the Donbass, but rather has been spread through the actions of Washington and NATO to the Baltic countries and their neighboring fellow Russophobes in Poland. Entire permanent new battalions have been created and stationed in those four countries right on Russia’s frontiers, and provocative military exercises seem to be ongoing on a daily basis, as if to taunt Russia and provoke them to make a first strike which NATO insists is coming and will counter in no uncertain terms. All the while, the aggressors from NATO and a world away in the Western hemisphere scream “Russian aggression, Russian aggression.”

    The tension and risk for world war has been made even greater by America’s intrusion into Syria, a country where it doesn’t belong, hasn’t been invited, and of which it seeks to overthrow the democratically elected government, calling it “regime change” and justifying it as just one of the things that America routinely does now since it is hegemon of the world. America has done the same to numerous other countries in the Middle East, but Syria is special because the Russian military is there by invitation of the legitimate government defending its integrity against hoards of foreign mercenary Islamist fighters recruited by, not only the United States, but bastions of freedom and democracy like Saudi Arabia, UAE, Kuwait and Turkey. This makes Syria another flash point for the potential start of World War III.

    The peace of the entire world is at risk because of decisions and actions made by the Obomber administration and Obomber’s secretary of state Clinton, who is poised to replace him with her even greater bellicosity. We haven’t even touched upon the suffering caused in all the other hot conflicts caused or fueled by Obomber’s war policies of the past eight years, but they have led to world instability as well and cannot have gone without notice and the disapproval of the American people. Can they?

    Can the American voters have possibly not noticed that all this turmoil, upheaval and the potential of Armageddon has occurred and who is the cause? Assuming that they have at least the sensory faculties of a three-toed sloth and they HAVE noticed, why in the name of all that is holy is there NOT an anti-war movement in this country? Why was there NOT a single peace candidate in either major political party? Why does the media turn a blind eye to the danger? Why are the slightest overtures toward rapprochement with Russia, and a turn away from the choice of yet another war–probably the one to end them all, by candidate Trump always totally denigrated and demonized by the political opposition and by the American media? Is everyone except those who read this blog suicidal? or just as thick as a brick? Somebody please do some esplainin’ to me. I do not get it. It’s like someone has convinced most Americans that 2 + 2 = 5, even though we’ve all got two hands and two feet that any one of us could use to arrive at a different conclusion.

    • Annie
      July 29, 2016 at 11:42 am

      As to where did the anti-war movement go, you have to ask yourself, when did it stop. The answer of course is it stopped once Obama got into office. It seems the movement, at least in NY, is more affiliated with party then anything else. It no doubt will be no different with Killary, if she wins the presidency. She is not only a democrat whom people continue to believe is the party of the people, but she can also hide behind her “femaleness” which seems to blind many to her hawkish, aggressive, non-maternal nature.

      • Dr. Ibrahim Soudy
        July 29, 2016 at 12:07 pm

        I guess there is no Anti-War Movement because the vast majority of Americans are just not willing to sacrifice. I attended many meetings of people who call themselves peace activists and almost all of those people were not willing to actually even go confront their own representatives and hold their feet to the fire. There is no real activism in America beyond socializing over watching a “meaningful movie” and having coffee or potluck dinner with it. People are way too comfortable to actually do something………….YES there are some anti-war activists but I would not call them a MOVEMENT by any stretch………….

        • TruthTime
          July 29, 2016 at 7:28 pm

          Perhaps when Hillary launches an illegal war and activates the back door selective draft, people will finally wake up as their draft card arrives in the mail.

          • Glenn Sohm
            July 31, 2016 at 12:47 am

            The fact that we had a selective service during the Vietnam War Era did play a huge part in nurturing the antiwar movement in this country. The all volunteer military and a jobless population helped America prosecute the many wars and conflicts over the last three decades. Had we still used selective service to mostly raise the armies, I believe the Bush wars in particular would have been shortened by several years. So long as the majority of the populace is comfortable and not subject to getting unwillingly involved, they can say they don’t like war and disapprove of foreign policy, but they’re not going to lift a finger to protest.

          • Pat Andler
            July 31, 2016 at 12:05 pm

            This is what I have been trying to get across throughout Bernie’s campaign, One thing he did not take the opportunity to do was hold her feet to the fire on her foreign policy. There has also been talk that we will soon register girls at 18 to be eligible for the draft. I have a 13 year old grandson, and he is who I am fighting for.NeverHillary
            My brother was drafted into Vietnam, luckily he made it back alive.

          • Bevan Trembly
            July 31, 2016 at 1:33 pm

            That’s a scenario from the last century. WWIII will be a gigantic, white flash lasting a day or two at the most. When it’s over the living will envy the dead…

          • Andrew Nichols
            August 1, 2016 at 6:55 am

            Too late then. I do wonder what any visiting aliens will make of what’s left in the radioactive ash of Clintons war. make no mistake – She is determined to start WW3.

      • Field of Dreams
        July 30, 2016 at 1:01 pm

        Understand something, Annie–the current Democratic Party of Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and all their little warmongering minions is no longer the party of the actual LEFT in this country. The reason you see no more war movement is because Obama continued to militarize the police in this country, and they crush dissent these days. Violently. As long as either prominent “party” as they stand today is in charge, there will be no dissent. You will shut up and cheer for war, hegemony and USA!!!!!!! and you will like it.

        You would actually know that, if you were anti-war yourself. Are you?

        • Pat Andler
          July 31, 2016 at 12:07 pm

          This primary fraudulent election proofs , Clinton will be a dictator and we will all be silenced as Bernie delegates and supporters were at the DNC convention. A nomination which was rightfully Sanders.

        • Gene Poole
          August 2, 2016 at 7:51 am

          Field of Dreams: You have points to make, but there was no need to open your post with paternalistic condescension and end it with a troll taunt.

      • July 31, 2016 at 10:56 am

        I was deeply involved in the antiwar movement in Seattle from August 2002 through 2004 or so. The movement began with unexpectedly large demonstrations in August & later in the fall, characterized (as I happen to know, that was my speciality) by extremely generous marchers. Shortly after the historic Feb 15, 2003 demonstration, the war began. As I have argued on my blog davidbyrnemcdonaldiii.com, that series of worldwide demonstrations totaling 30,000,000 or so spooked the rulers into invading Iraq earlier than intended.

        The beginning of the ground war effectively took the heart out of the antiwar movement in the US. The tricky unity of antiwar forces birthed by the severity of impending war dissolved into barely disguised squabbling when the pressure to “support our troops” began to descend in force, which was about 20 minutes after the first cruise missiles hit Baghdad.

        Ancient and ridiculous differences re-emerged and suddenly there was no serious force to counterpose to the overwhelming propaganda. To oppose the war was to support death to US forces, so they said. The media were already all lined up for this anyway, having been disciplined to accept total bullshit best exemplified by the NYTimes reporter Judith Miller, who got above-the-fold front page space for a breathless article about an Iraqi bad guy who had been pointed out to her from across the street by a for real American spook. That guy said there were WMDs, so there. You think I’m kidding, but it was like that.

        My larger point in this little recital is that unfortunately the death of the antiwar movement had nothing to do with Barack Obama. You could argue that BO’s presidency stopped the formation of a new antiwar movement to this very day but I would not give BO all the credit.

        Pretty soon he will be gone and Black people are still gonna be way more fucked than they ever have been since the formation of the CIO and the heady days of the civil rights movement when things were actually moving forward for them.

      • July 31, 2016 at 4:46 pm

        “A historical milestone need not come at the expense of America.” cez Leslie Rutledge, Attorney General of Arkansas.

        Wow!

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_G9VLkAR7W0

        ?and watch Laura Ingraham, bring the house down.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sqNhDVcvrsg

      • Seyed
        August 1, 2016 at 6:21 pm

        Well said!

    • Bill Bodden
      July 29, 2016 at 1:47 pm

      Why is there no longer any anti-war movement in the United States?

      Because the vast majority of Americans don’t care about victims of American wars if they are not affected negatively by these wars. If there is money to be made off wars then they will go along with them. There is also a sizable number of Americans who have been programmed to be authoritarians or authoritarian followers with a proclivity for war.

      • Kiza
        July 29, 2016 at 9:06 pm

        Bill, I was about to write an explanation that you wrote.

        The key problem is that the US never felt war on its own skin. For the US war is:
        1) yellow ribbons around trees and little flags on garden lawns (“support our killers”),
        2) an employment opportunity,
        3) macho movies about Government sanctioned US snipers-killers or utter bull nonsense about “special” forces,
        4) shock and awe fire works on TV, similar to 4th July and so on.

        But for the victims for the US wars of choice always wrapped up in some haughty ideals, the US wars are:
        1) dead family members: sons, daughters, wives, parents,
        2) lawlessness in their societies which used to be functioning before the war; now lawlessness means stealing, murder, rape and so on; no schooling, no work, just crime
        3) newborn children dying due to destroyed hospitals, lack of clean water, medicine or baby food
        4) children on house arrest due to the constant overhead buzzing of the US killer robots and and on.

        To get a functional anti-war movement in the US, you would have to reverse these two sets of effects of war for a sufficient time that the regime could not spin it in favor of more wars as they did 911, for example. Otherwise, the full stomach (enjoying life) US residents would absolutely never understand the empty stomach (suffering) foreigners.

        • Bill Bodden
          July 29, 2016 at 11:25 pm

          Kiza: It looks like we are on the same page. Hopefully, there are many others out there who will also get the message and act.

        • July 31, 2016 at 10:29 am

          You nailed it, Kiza. Excellent analysis. You should be writing for Consortium News.

    • Aniko
      July 29, 2016 at 4:03 pm

      To Realist, Very good summary. Yes the people are that thick. They are being brainwashed by the media and have no clue what is happening. Did you see the DNC convention? Delegates crying that finally a woman is nominated.(I am a woman too) Scare mongering and total misinformation dominates the land. The biggest fear, a potential nuclear war is not on the mind of the people. To be fair there are some peace organizations like Pink Code but I agree it should a nationwide protest.

      • Peter Loeb
        July 31, 2016 at 7:15 am

        WAR IS ALWAYS EASILY WINNABLE, TO BE SHORT….
        SO…”JINGO BELL, JINGO BELL, JINGO ALL THE WAY !!!.”

        These are the basic beliefs of every nation (group) that plans
        on going to war from Hitler to….”We are supperior and
        “they” will be finnished very soon…” etc. etc. etc.

        Don’t mention nuclear!! Are you crazy?? No one would touch
        the US. Not now, not ever.Not even a small put put barge
        with a US flag. We would destroy them (or something like that).

        And quite naturally HRC purposefully planned HRC’s campaign so
        that none of her so-called “achievements”, “qualifications” would
        ever come up.

        And —from HRC’s perspective— nothing that Israel has done
        can ever be counted. Israel represents the chosen people.
        (Palestinians are unchosen?)

        To be honest, I am not certain things would be different
        under Donald Trump. Campaigns are one thing, administration
        and governance are another.

        —–

        Incidentally, I completely agree with Dr. I Soudy ( above) that there
        is no “movement” beyond the naive romanticism of very few.

        Perhaps it’s ime for SCO—Shanghai Coordinating Organization—
        plan some large “defensive” basis in Mexico and Venezuala.
        They could use the high tech training. With impunity, of course,
        just like the hundreds of US bases around the globe.

        —-Peter Loeb, Boston, MA, USA

    • Nancy
      July 29, 2016 at 8:36 pm

      I could hear the cries from Sanders’ delegates at the DNC! Join the movement!!

    • alrazi
      July 29, 2016 at 10:15 pm

      You should just come out and say that you don’t care how many people are killed by Assad, so long as you can signal your anti war credentials to the idiots who claim to be moral saints. It is amazing how people will go all teary eyed about the ‘killer’ drones that have actually killed far fewer civilians than the Assads , talibans of this world and actually have given a fighting chance to people who want live normal free lives in those countries. You are not a ‘realist’ , if you were you would at least recognize that Assad’s continued assaults are giving a whole new life to alqaeda , isis and other such islamist groups. All this ‘anti-war’ pacifism is a simple cover for your pathetic selfish cowardice, anyways it is your country but remember there will be a time when you might need help against tyranny and no one will be around to help you.

      • Realist
        July 29, 2016 at 10:55 pm

        This isn’t about Assad. Washington and its proxies, including people like yourself, would be attacking whatever legitimate government it wishes to topple in order to control territory, gain resources and manipulate the lives of people to its own ends. The people of Donbass have attacked no one, yet they receive the wrath of America through its proxies in Kiev. America needs no help against tyranny. No tyrants are assailing America. America is the tyrannical force ending life or making it miserable for millions of others. What brand of “moderate” terrorist are you a part of Alrazi? What gives you the right to barge into countries throughout the Middle East and call people cowards as you slaughter them like sheep because America gives you the firepower? Only delusional sociopaths like yourself and the Washington power structure believe that the wholesale murder of others is any reasonable or realistic way to organize human societies. If you are a Syrian and not some Saudi mercenary, you had the chance to cast a vote against Assad at the ballot box. Sorry, your side was outvoted. Democracy doesn’t mean you have the right to turn to guns when you lose at the ballot box. You understand nothing about the principles upon which the American system of government was originally based and which has been betrayed by its recent lineup of presidents.

        • Joe Tedesky
          July 29, 2016 at 11:51 pm

          Realist, you are right this isn’t about Assad or any other targeted leader the U.S. claims must go. There is a self righteousness which prevails inside the American conscious which the spin masters play on quite successfully. In order to arouse the American soul, who basically wants to do the right thing, these propagandist turn everything into black and white, good and evil. Your government and it’s military doesn’t need your participation, as much as it needs your staying uninformed and keeping you absorbed with as much nonsense as your heart may bear.

          As much as I would fear losing good young people to war, I seriously think that if this country had a draft, that much would change when it comes to the public’s approval of all these wars. George W Bush after 911 told us all to go ‘shopping’, or go to ‘DisneyLand’. W. wasn’t trying to make every Americans life easier, as much as he was telling all of us, to stay the hell out of his way. If you were shocked at his advice as much as I was, then you would realize how we Americans weren’t wanted, nor were we needed, because Cheney/Bush & Company had a plan. Their plan, not our plan.

          It’s going to take something very big to wake America up. I won’t go so far as to say, ‘like a new Pearl Harbor’, but some kind of catastrophe which will turn the tide where people will respond with a vengeance to take back their country. Then again, with unexpected chaos anything is possible, like Marshal Law.

          I hate to leave this comment with such doom and gloom, so tomorrow do something with a friend,,or a loved one. Like I told KIza the other day, go plant a tree. Contact your representatives and tell them how you feel, or better yet tell them how to vote. It ain’t over til the fat lady sings. Have a good and healthy day…..life!

        • July 29, 2016 at 11:58 pm

          Realist, phenomenal salient points u make. U also have excellent critical analysis.I will try to use a Sociologically and historically angle which I will try to address the point of “No Peace Movement”. The United States and most Anglo-sphere world have always thought themselves to be exceptional. With that mind set, it has created a complete intellectual deficiency to even address any aspect of peace. Exceptionalism in itself creates a paradigm of superiority. One recent example was the DNC. I cannot recall the so called gentlemans name . He stated his words” We lost Ukraine” The mind set here is it is just a vacant land. No regard for the actual people of the country. Regime change. Under Obama’s administration he was far more bellicose than Bush 1 or Bush 2 administrations facts show us that. Hence back to this vile supremacist mind set known as exceptionalism has to be debunked and has to be shown for what it is. Until this doesn’t happen their will be no impetus for any such cause.

          • July 30, 2016 at 9:13 am

            I might also add history has an odd way of repeating itself. Harold Wallace comes to mind. Had he been given the vice presidency ticket on Roosevelt’s last nomination, well we all know what happened and so do the citizens of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Wallace was robbed of that ticket in similar fashion by the establishment class of the Democratic party.
            YESTERDAYS NEWS GETS WRAPPED IN TODAY’S FISH

    • bobo c
      July 30, 2016 at 12:02 pm

      Thank you. This is probably the most relevant commentary I’ve read on the election to date. As you discuss, it’s utterly staggering how little is made of US militarism and resulting terrorism and refugee crises around the world. If I knew how to follow your posts, or facebook, I would. Thank you.

      • Realist
        July 30, 2016 at 5:46 pm

        No blogs, no facebook. Just a retired biochemistry professor who has looked for the truth all his life and finds that the most expedient way to find it is to first rigorously organise all the facts before leaping to conclusions, embracing the conventional wisdom or adopting other people’s ideas.

    • Wm. Boyce
      July 30, 2016 at 12:06 pm

      “Why is there no longer any anti-war movement in the United States?”

      Try the fact that the “Recovery,” 95 percent of which went to the top 1 percent of the population in the U.S., has left millions of people scrambling to survive. Not much time or desire to engage in a citizen’s duty to participate when you’ve lost your house to criminal banksters, or your job has disappeared, replaced by a McJob that doesn’t pay a living wage. Pocketbook politics will always dominate here, and that’s why the foreign policy stuff is kept on the back burner til it’s time to manipulate the public into another war.

      • Joe Tedesky
        July 30, 2016 at 12:49 pm

        You have made a great point. I have met a lot of average folk who don’t know who’s fighting who in Syria, and couldn’t find Ukraine on a map if their life depended upon it. These same decent citizens when it comes to their feelings regarding these wars, just can’t understand why we give so much money to foreign governments. Donald Trump is playing a winning hand when he points to our nations large deficits. I’m no Trump supporter, but yet he does make a good point when pointing to our country’s crazy financial affairs. Is it possible that Americans will someday protest war, not for humanitarian reasons, but of fiscal concerns, and nothing more. Somewhere in the Middle East their is a whole lot of people suffering who wish we Americans would finally do something to insure peace.

        • Realist
          July 30, 2016 at 5:42 pm

          Joe, you make a good point for the somnambulance of the American worker, but what about the American politicians. Why has no Martin Luther King, Gene McCarthy, Robert Kennedy or George McGovern emerged. Moreover, why have American politicians like John Kerry, formerly prominent in the anti-war movement, suddenly emerged as super war hawks? Just a matter of getting theirs as insiders and now wanting to protect all their personal wealth and prerogatives? Is hypocrisy programmed into the aging process in the human genome?

    • July 31, 2016 at 3:08 pm

      Nobody voted for Clinon. She stole the primaries with two percent of the popular vote by hijacking all the permanent mail voters

  2. Hillary.
    July 29, 2016 at 11:16 am

    During Leon Panetta’s speech at the Convention the crowd was heard to repeatedly shout out ” NO MORE WAR”.
    Hopefully the powers that be took notice.

    • Bill Bodden
      July 29, 2016 at 5:09 pm

      The powers that be surely noticed, but then they would have worked on a plan to silence the protesters. Not a chance in hell they would switch to peacemakers.

  3. D5-5
    July 29, 2016 at 11:36 am

    That the same arguments for “moderate” forces, including the contradictory how to defeat ISIS is to attack ISIS’s enemies, is beyond discouraging after all the exposure (from this website especially) over the past few years. WHY the US is so interested in displacing Assad in terms of its objectives to control the middle east in consort with Israel and other allies is rarely discussed. The disgusting current display (and I’m thinking desperation) of Clinton’s demonizing Russia is also a huge obstacle for any rational consideration of how to move forward instead of backwards. So again I feel like asking Consortium news and commenters here to consider the proposition that, under these circumstances, Trump may be the lesser of the two evils and the best choice (?). Is it possible to have a friendly discussion and analysis of this idea. The following essay could be a starter:

    http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/07/29/could-trump-be-good-for-peace/

    • Bill Bodden
      July 29, 2016 at 2:00 pm

      Whether Trump or Clinton is the lesser evil is debatable. You vote the lesser evil, you still get evil as demonstrated by all the presidential elections after Jimmy Carter. Jimmy Carter has stains on his presidential record, but they are, in part, due to the Democratic Party and Republican Party oligarchs and the Washington insiders ganging up on him. Since then the evils have become progressively more evil so much so that a sizable portion of the American public is finally waking up to reality and opposing both Clinton and Trump. That is what the American people need to do on November 8th. Reject both Clinton and Trump. As Edward Snowden put it – the choice is between cholera and gonorrhea. I would revise that to the choice being between the Ebola virus and bubonic plague.

      • D5-5
        July 29, 2016 at 2:42 pm

        Thank you. I’m not advocating Trump but questioning the automatic assumption he’s worse than Clinton–additionally his clumsiness and shallowness now on display may make him less dangerous in terms of doing anything but run his mouth. My candidate is Jill Stein. She may not win but a significant third party could form itself, finally.

        • Bill Bodden
          July 29, 2016 at 3:12 pm

          … the automatic assumption he’s worse than Clinton …

          It may be impossible to come to an indisputable conclusion as to which is worse than the other. People will judge both Clinton and Trump according to their personal biases. Hillary’s history and identity with wars and regime changes and her war criminal and wormongering friends make a good case for her being the worst presidential candidate in American history – forget first woman. There are factors related to Trump that suggest he will be less likely to go to war, but he has character deficiencies as noted on Marjorie Cohn’s recent post, that could lead to as much or more of the turmoil we can expect from Clinton and her hawks.

          When voters in Germany and Italy in the 1920s began voting for Hitler and Mussolini very few anticipated they would trigger World War Two. Hitler’s slogan was a German version of “making America great again” and Mussolini promised to get the trains to run on time.

          • D5-5
            July 30, 2016 at 1:09 pm

            @Bill Bodden. Yes, of course it’s impossible to ascertain the worst or most evil of the two. I’m objecting to the automatic assumption, coming for example from Chomsky, that “reality” means we MUST vote for Clinton, without any further weighing or consideration or assessing of just how bad Trump is. The bulk of Sanders’ supporters (sixty percent?) are swinging, more or less automatically on Sanders’ directions, despite his precipitous loss of credibility, to Clinton. Meanwhile, the DEMs are now starting to demonize Stein–and this is “the lesser evil”? Well, I’m not going to hold my nose again. I want a candidate, and that’s Stein, and if that means Trump gets the office I’m still going for Stein. I will NOT vote for Clinton.

        • Abbybwood
          July 29, 2016 at 4:58 pm

          If all the Sanders supporters registered to vote with The Green Party and put stickers on their cars and lawn signs up, by September 1st Jill Stein would be polling at 15% and would be in the debates.

          In a three way race when Trump and Clinton are roundly loathed by the American people, Stein could win the election IF she is on enough ballots to get the necessary 270 electoral votes. Especially if she chooses a VP candidate who has experience and high ethical standards. A little charisma would be nice too.

          Some solid Stein demonstrations in front of CNN, NBC, FOX and The New York Times and Los Angeles Times offices would also be helpful to get her more name recognition.

          This COULD all be accomplished. Where there is a WILL there is a WAY.

          If nothing else we could all get the satisfaction of watching the news media’s heads explode on national television when they are FORCED to listen to her!

          • Bill Bodden
            July 29, 2016 at 5:12 pm

            I’ll second that.

          • b.grand
            July 29, 2016 at 5:40 pm

            YES Abby!

            People just have to be willing to try. When Sanders started out, his numbers were worse than Stein’s. Getting the Green Party into the debates IS POSSIBLE.

          • Gregory Herr
            July 29, 2016 at 7:57 pm

            I love the way you think.

          • Nancy
            July 29, 2016 at 8:38 pm

            Yes! I agree. GOTVOTE. Go Green.

          • chuck b
            July 30, 2016 at 8:18 am

            jill stein/nina turner + secretary of state tulsi gabbard… imagine!

          • July 30, 2016 at 9:01 am

            @Abbywood. We have to storm the palace. That is my solution . peaceful unarmed storming I might add. How Ironic.Just like the Bolsheviks did in 1917 just 99 years ago. Also the way things stand at the moment, the combination of The green vote and libertarian vote is sitting at 25 %. I know both these parties r exact opposites of each other but for the greater good, for humanities sake and Us citizens sake . we should all promote such an alliance this will guarantee a loss for both democrats and republicans. If all else fails then Ghandiesk storming of the palace just 100 years after the Bolshevik revolution . It is plausible doable and a must .Millions upon millions peacefully storming the White house lawns on inauguration day. Anything but these aforementioned solutions will be calamitous for humanity. Democratic presidency hawks and modern fascism on steroids. Republican presidency fascism on steroids with potential blow back from initial 4 years which could lead to global confrontation with the two bears. Either way we the sheeple will be doomed . Hence Ghandiesk storming the palace or combined Green/Libertarian ticket . I know it could be plausible ,at least the Green/libertarian ticket . STEIN/PAUL TICKET. Have Ron Paul come out of retirement he is a sage man. I don’t agree alot of his libertarian stances but he is still sage . It would be a great coup for all of humanity.
            P’S I know I am a dreamer .

  4. exiled off mainstreet
    July 29, 2016 at 11:58 am

    The Clinton program not only threatens nuclear war, it does so in a treasonous fashion on behalf of el qaeda elements. The lunacy of this is baffling. It’s like 1984 on steroids.

  5. F. G. Sanford
    July 29, 2016 at 11:59 am

    OK, maybe it’s just me. But, I know that there are qualified people out there with first-hand military, defense and geo-strategic planning experience. There are people with intimate knowledge of logistical considerations, weapons platforms, joint/combined operations, combat capabilities and realistic threat/intelligence assessments. Michelle Flournoy has a degree in “social studies”. That’s right, SOCIAL STUDIES. Sure, it was from Harvard, but aside from the prestige, how much better could that education really be? She is apparently the daughter of some Hollywood executive who went from Harvard to one of those exclusive rich-kids-only European masters’ programs where the primary academic criteria is attendance. Then, low and behold, she shows up as a “think-tank” denizen in a milieu frequented by “experts” credentialed by consensus: Kagans, Nulands, Wolfowitzs, Bremers and the like. None of them has ever had a “real” job. Flournoy has a new name for an old game: “Limited Bombing Zone”. She and her cohorts are recommending that our “allies” increase their efforts, but spare the “moderate” rebels. Since there are actually no “moderate” rebels – all of them are mercenaries affiliated with Al Qaida and enlisted to oust Assad – what she advocates is tantamount to stepping up efforts against the U.S.-Russia coalition. In other words, supporting an enemy which would ultimately confront OUR troops on the ground. And, yes, we apparently do have special forces troops on the ground. As current U.S. efforts appear to be directed to supporting Kurdish forces, Turkey realizes its ultimate nightmare: the creation of of a Kurdistan on its border. This in turn plays to the ultimate Neocon goal of Balkanizing Syria into Kurdish, Shia and Sunni enclaves, at least one of which would be a U.S. controlled vassal. The goal is to control pipeline territory, which is the ultimate Neoliberal goal. Keep in mind, this is all being ginned up by a candidate selected by nepotist intellectuals who apparently fail to realize that a degree in “social studies” might not be adequate preparation. But hey, Stalingrad, Waterloo, Crimea, Den Bien Phu…those were all great opportunities to learn “on the job”. And people think Trump is a dangerous choice. Gimme a break.

    • Abe
      July 29, 2016 at 2:22 pm

      Commenting on a December 24, 2012 Consortium News article, “Israel Lobby Takes Aim Again” by Charles W. “Chas” Freeman Jr., former FBI agent and whistleblower Coleen Rowley noted “the political selling ploy that obviously accompanies the promotion of Michele Flournoy over Hagel effectively serves to dupe the ‘feminist’ contingent. The neo-cons are not dummies when it comes to using such identity politics and blind loyalty psychology to get their way on war.”

      Let’s just say that it’s important that one not “stand out” too much.

      The Times of Israel makes no bones about Clinton’s picks and “the chops they bring”
      http://www.timesofisrael.com/clintons-foreign-policy-advisers-stand-out-for-not-standing-out/

    • Brad Owen
      July 30, 2016 at 8:01 am

      I think “Balkanizing” is the key word in your comment. I think THAT is the main geo-strategic objective of the “Western Empire”(Europe plus Anglo-CommonWealth-America), even more so than infrastructure and commodities (pipelines, oil and such, although that is still important until substitutes are found). “Balkanization” is the prevention of the coalescing and reprising of the Muslim Empire. Ironically, the Nations of Europe on the Balkan Peninsula were vassal states in Turkey’s Muslim Empire, as were Spain Portugal, parts of France, Italy subjected to vassalage by other Muslim Empires….just one more prize to reclaim; Constantinople/Byzantium (Istanbul), and a Kurdistan will probably figure into the plan. After all, they can make EXACTLY the same historical case as the Jews did…a Homeland for the persecuted, stateless Kurds.
      This is probably the thinking of the Empire-Builders in the Deep State, NOT that I agree with their thinking…THEY probably think they are doing “We The People” of the “Western Empire” a favor by tending to the “necessary” dirty work of safe-guarding Empire.

      • Gene Poole
        August 2, 2016 at 9:14 am

        Balkanizing is indeed the key. But it’s not so much a matter of preventing the Ottoman Empire from re-forming. It’s purely a matter of keeping our empire in place, because we believe – as the Ottomans or the Romans or whoever else you can name probably didn’t believe – that there can only be one empire and it has to be ours.

  6. Abe
    July 29, 2016 at 1:12 pm

    No matter whose kettle of war hawks and what they do in Syria, rest assured that it will be cheered on by the now-usual suspect: fake “citizen journalist” Eliot Higgins
    https://notthemsmdotcom.wordpress.com/2013/12/12/brown-moses-new-media-same-as-the-old-media/

    Higgins’ steaming piles of BM now proliferate as “open source intelligence (OSINT) ‘analysis'” work frauduct disseminated via the Bellingcat site, media stalwarts like the New York Times and UK Guardian, and the now unquestionably “evil” Google.

  7. Brad Benson
    July 29, 2016 at 1:34 pm

    Trump will win this election, precisely because he is the peace candidate. No one wants to talk about peace openly, but Trump has made it clear enough–just as the WAR CRIMINAL has already announced her plans.

    • Abbybwood
      July 29, 2016 at 5:05 pm

      Seriously Brad.

      Which would any average, intelligent American choose? The absolute proven war criminal or the person who “could” become a war criminal?

      Seems like common sense to me.

      Best we get busy calling for paper ballots in this election with hand counting at local precincts on camera.

      Also we should be fighting for exit polling in all 50 states. If necessary have a group map out which precincts and locations in which states and get a website for everyone to download the forms and take on specific precincts to do our own exit polling. At the end of the day on November 8th all data would be fed to the website and voila!! There’s your winner!

      • Kiza
        July 29, 2016 at 9:35 pm

        “Which would any average, intelligent American choose? The absolute proven war criminal or the person who “could” become a war criminal?” Nicely put Abbywood.

        But the MSM spinning of the meme of “the temperamental Trump with nuclear launch codes” on behalf of the Clintonistas does not aim to smear Trump as much as it aims to distract (that word again!!!) from the reality of a war-harpy candidate. It is an exercise in having it both ways: presenting Hillary as a friend of the MIC and the Zionist militarism, as well as appealing to the anti-war left wing of the Democratic Party.

        For my own money, I would expect Trump to create a war or two in his eight years of presidency, just to keep the snipers of the bloodsucking MIC off his back (unless he wants to end up like the Kennedies). As to Jill Stein, I sincerely wish her and her voters the best. However, the US system cannot be changed by a revolution then by evolution, and Trump is as much of a change (very little) as the US system can take without internal combustion. Anyone who expects major changes from Trump will be terribly disappointed, but if he manages to arrest the decline then he will fulfill his promises.

  8. Bill Bodden
    July 29, 2016 at 2:14 pm

    Trump is a loose cannon and anything could happen with him in the White House. Hillary’s great threat is more wars against foreign powers. Trump’s great threat is more likely to be domestic. Consider his claim to be the law and order candidate and check out how well things went in the past when “law and order” was in vogue. After things go wrong domestically then leaders look overseas for a scapegoat.

  9. Thurgle
    July 29, 2016 at 4:38 pm

    The American public seems fine with inflicting death and destruction on a mass scale so long as it is far away and they don’t have to know about it; and MSM is happy to gratify their desire to remain uninformed. This can only change if the bipartisan consensus for war and military spending is challenged and eventually broken.
    Discouragingly, not even Bernie Sanders dared take on the MIC (military-industrial complex) and the vast armaments and mercenary/security private sector that feeds off US militarism. In fact, only Trump has spoken out against the second cold war and questioned the utility and ability to financially underwrite the vast military alliances that compose the US empire. He even hints that he is aware that when the USSR ceased to exist, NATO lost its reason for being and should have been disbanded, not expanded.
    The pathetic truth, then, is that the last hope for restoring peaceful friendly relations with Russia is Trump; he is all that stands in the way of total neocon domination of the US government. So, can’t we reconcile ourselves to the fact that an ignorant fascistic racist demagogue is preferable to a corporate-owned neocon imperialist warmonger? On the misery index, war with Russia is off-the-scale, even terminal for our species (and most others). So, if I lived in a toss-up state, I regret to say that I ‘d feel obliged to vote for Trump. Fortunately, I don’t and will vote for Jill Stein.

    • Kelley Southworth
      July 29, 2016 at 6:26 pm

      Let’s get this info out to the masses! Jill Stein needs to get on the debate forum to show the American public that there IS ANOTHER CHOICE and that it promotes PEACE, LIVE AND UNITY WORLDWIDE

    • July 29, 2016 at 6:32 pm

      Great comment, Thurgle – I will recycle some of your insights in my own future comments. Though I do believe a mass progressive party is needed (see http://www.nhprog.org), the Greens are far from it. Symbolic and write-in votes are lost in the shuffle and have little impact, unfortunately. And I cannot vote for either of the main candidates in good conscience. I feel disenfranchised at the moment.

    • m.
      July 29, 2016 at 10:15 pm

      The neocons were formerly in and running the foreign policy of the Bush administration. They are chameleons. We’ve been told on many occasions that she is going to be the nominee and most probably going to win. So now it’s been signaled that she will be backed by them (Robert Kagan, et al.). She is a Republican after all.

  10. Bill Bodden
    July 29, 2016 at 7:14 pm

    There is a petition at Roots Action to boost Jill Stein for president. If you believe Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are the worst possible choices for 2016 but want an honorable alternative consider signing this petition:

    “I’ll vote for Jill if you will” pledge campaign to elect Jill Stein president.https://diy.rootsaction.org/petitions/i-ll-vote-for-jill-if-you-will-pledge-campaign-to-elect-jill-stein-president

  11. aj
    July 29, 2016 at 8:35 pm

    I pushed the vote now red rectangle 8 times only to repeatedly come back to the same spot and page.

    • Bill Bodden
      July 29, 2016 at 8:43 pm

      The site shows two people signed within the last hour or so. I’ll see if I can discover what might be your problem. Thanks for trying.

  12. John
    July 29, 2016 at 11:20 pm

    Have you noticed the “terrorist” only take out “regular people”…..Why is it they don’t target the big players ? Not even a central bank CEO…..Think America think !!

  13. Julie
    July 30, 2016 at 4:47 am

    Aloha, Please do remember the Fear Factor that has been nursed to extremes in this campaign. Our Congress is up for grabs this year which has been purposely ignored. A large percentage of the 88% up for grabs could hopefully be voted in as Progressive or at least Do No Harm candidates. O Bummer was stopped by Congress no less than five hundred times! Do not forget . What makes you think that Trump would not be contained ? I know , Fear Mongering ! The Killary will not be contained by anyone, certainly not the FBI nor the Justice Dept. If it comes down to it I will go with the Dooonald…why? because he is a dufus that can be contained !

  14. GB
    July 30, 2016 at 9:29 am

    What ever happened to the laws against war crimes?

    Or is the Supreme Law now, ‘Might makes Right?’

  15. Jeremy
    July 30, 2016 at 10:46 am

    Turn to God…then do your best to be part of the solution. Man will always fall short, and we have a power structure that is absolutely rotten with greed and corruption. I will vote for Jill Stein, however I have already seen how the DNC stole one election, no reason to think they won’t steal the next one.

  16. D5-5
    July 30, 2016 at 2:20 pm

    You can sign a petition to open the debates to Stein and others here–

    http://www.jill2016.com/openthedebatespetition

  17. Sr. Gibbonk
    July 30, 2016 at 7:13 pm

    From the confines of the duopoly straitjacket, hapless voters time and again vote against the candidate they perceive as being the greater of two evils. Of course making such a fine distinction is no easy task; the best one can hope for is evil in slightly slower motion.

    The game is fixed and we, the wee people, are condemned to live in interesting times. The Donald will be fired and the Disaster in Waiting will be back in the White House. She will sharpen her teeth on the bones of war and Bill will have another go at transferring the nation’s wealth to the plutocrats this darling couple so faithfully serve. Yes Yogi, it will be deja vu all over again.

  18. JustAnotherConcernedCitizen
    July 31, 2016 at 12:18 am

    Unlike “Realist” this country needs to build an assault program that will put an end to said Islamic groups. We need less people question the motives of those who want to keep America safe and in good standing, and more people willing to risk their lives before there is open terror running across American soil. We are on the brink of that already! Pssh, there are most definitely assailants with terrorist group connections running through America thanks to Obama and his disregard of our immigration laws. My concern is that one person cannot walk into a presidency, whether his or her intentions are in the right place and change the laws and policies themselves. This countrys government won’t allow that, no matter the circumstance. This country’s security, foreign policy, immigration laws, etc. Needs to become a movement, and one that puts the lives of genuine Americans as highest priority. Screw all the political correctness. One thing is for damn sure, if things start going south in this country, my family and I already have a safe zone and plenty of survival essentials packed away. If I wasn’t an advocate of patriotism and a supporter of American lives, I wouldn’t have interjected my opinion at all. BUT, if you believe that we are not facing major threats domestically and internationally this is all a coup for money, greed, power, and territory…I’m sorry, pal, you are sadly mistaken.

    • Realist
      July 31, 2016 at 9:38 am

      Do you believe in cause and effect, Sir? If so, go back and read your history books, particularly the chapters devoted to Western interface with the Middle East dating back to circa WWI when mechanized warfare was used to defeat and dismember the anachronistic Ottoman Empire. (You can go all the way back to the Crusades if you want to identify old enmities created out of a lust for wealth and power that have lasted a millennium.) The region was capriciously divvied up between the Western powers with no regard to ethnic/tribal integrity of the landscape. In fact, lines were drawn to prevent the people from forming unified polities that might someday challenge their neo-colonial masters. That’s one thing that’s been a sore point for all those folks ever since.

      Later we imposed CIA-fomented coups, as in Iran, when we didn’t cotton to the manner in which the natives wanted to run their own affairs. Then we imposed Israel upon the people of Palestine and any of the surrounding Islamic countries that sought to assist their Muslim brothers against Zionist oppression. I’ll let you recount the multitude of other dominoes that fell in the aftermath of that, up to the present conflicts in Iraq, Syria, Yemen and as far afield as Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Afghanistan.

      Those millions of Muslims that reside in the Middle East and North Africa have a multitude of bones to pick with us, Mr. Concerned Citizen. Don’t pretend that “Arab rage” originates out of nowhere for no reason, and that we Westerners have been the only victims in the give and take, or that America–10,000 miles away from the action that we stir up and protected by two oceans–is on the front lines of the ethnic turmoil, bloodshed and mass migration. Compared to the populace of the Middle East, and now Europe, we’ve hardly felt a thing in America. Yet, you want to escalate with ever more violence of the sort that started this vicious cycle in motion. You have no solution, sir. You only want to exacerbate the problem.

      This may be simplistic compared to the military escalations that you obviously want to impose, but, just maybe, we should clear out of the area entirely and let the natives sort out their own affairs amongst themselves. It might help if we refused to sell them a single bullet. Embargo modern weaponry in that part of the world. (America is big on embargoes and economic sanctions.) They’d have to manufacture it all themselves if they wanted to pursue mass killing on the scale WE have made possible. Of course, that will never happen, because there is too much money to be made from selling fighter jets to Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the like…Israel included. Ill-gotten gains, I’d call them, sir. Paid for with the blood of innocents. Go wave your flags for someone as credulous of government propaganda as yourself. You won’t find many here…, pal.

      • Brad Owen
        August 1, 2016 at 8:51 am

        “(You can go all the way back to the Crusades…)”.
        Or, you can go all the way back to the 6th century Islamic firestorm that swept all of northern Africa, from the Atlantic, and on into the Middle East, and on into the Indian subcontinent, destroying the Eastern Roman Empire’s efforts to retrieve the Western Roman Empire’s Provinces, destroying the Byzantine Empire (Eastern Roman Empire in Greek clothes), taking Byzantium/Constantinople, sweeping into the Balkan Peninsula, the Iberian Peninsula, into parts of France and Italy. Or even further back, in Pagan/Polytheistic times, when the Ancient Egyptian Sphere-of-Influence clashed with Ancient Assyrian, Babylonian and Persian Empires, and Europeans (Greek CityStates, Crete, Italic CityStates) were minor, bit-players generally favoring Egypt over the Ancient Empires of the East, which were constantly clashing with the Ancient Greeks. Imperial, Karmic “Tit-for-Tat” will go on until the ZeitGeist changes, and humanity no longer thinks in terms of Empire and safe-guarding Imperial interests. Human behavior is largely governed by which ZeitGeist is in Play, defining the New Era, whatever THAT may be. Call me a realist with a very long-range view, and admitting to not knowing ALL the Players involved (a “small a” agnostic).

        • Gene Poole
          August 2, 2016 at 9:26 am

          Yeah, and isn’t it convenient that the Wheel of Karma is at a point where the USA is the one that gets to spread its firestorm of destruction around the globe? As long as our military and police can keep us all safe and snug…

    • Gene Poole
      August 2, 2016 at 9:21 am

      You don’t happen to have some canned goods, dehydrated water, and ammo to sell us, do you?

    • John Ellis
      August 6, 2016 at 7:39 pm

      Only a self-absorbed, bigoted, selfish and greed driven person thinks that his life is of more importance then the life of others. A dog eat dog mentality, indicative of whose who own excessive wealth.

      Let me guess, you are a blood descendent of the first “illegal aliens” who walked on American soil, those who should have been shipped back to Western Europe where they belong. For then the native American Indian would not have been exterminated by a genocide and America would still be a free and open country.

  19. John Ellis
    August 6, 2016 at 6:29 pm

    VOTE JILL STEIN — BE FREE OF GUILT

    Or be brainwashed into voting for a disaster capitalist of fascist, for surely the ruling elite want you so full of guilt that you back away from government, allowing the rich to do as they please with government.

  20. August 7, 2016 at 5:47 pm

    If all wars ARE bankers wars, well, the bankers are in a bit of trouble right now, and their biggest idea for getting themselves off the hotseat might likely be one of those wars. So, from that twisted view, the best thing would be to light a match to a trustworthy powder-keg. Like, really going to war in Syria with “stand-off strikes” against Assad military assets in a “Price-Tag” campaign for Russia or Syria bombing Washington’s pet terrorists. Yeah, going toe-to-toe with the Rooskies in a matter of direct threat to Russia’s security. That’s the ticket.

    Flournoy and Panetta are just cats-paws for the Imperial-Power-That-Dare-Not-Speak-Its-Name. But, at least we have a very good indication of what a Clinton administration foreign policy will look like.

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