Washington’s New Lock-Step March of Folly

Exclusive: Confident in a Hillary Clinton victory, Washington’s foreign policy elite is readying plans for more warfare in Syria and more confrontations with nuclear-armed Russia, an across-the-spectrum “group think” that risks life on the planet, says Robert Parry.

By Robert Parry

As polls show Hillary Clinton closing in on victory, Official Washington’s neoconservative (and liberal-hawk) foreign policy establishment is rubbing its hands in anticipation of more war and more strife, including a U.S. military escalation in Syria, a take-down of Iran, and a showdown with nuclear-armed Russia.

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaking at an Atlantic Council event in 2013. (Photo credit: Atlantic Council)

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaking at an Atlantic Council event in 2013. (Photo credit: Atlantic Council)

What is perhaps most alarming about this new “group think” is that there doesn’t appear to be any significant resistance to the expectation that President Hillary Clinton will unleash these neocon/liberal-hawk forces of intervention that President Barack Obama has somewhat restrained.

Assuming Donald Trump’s defeat – increasingly seen as a foregone conclusion – the Republican leadership would mostly be in sync with Clinton if she adopts a hawkish foreign policy similar to what was pursued by President George W. Bush. Meanwhile, most Democrats would be hesitant to challenge their party’s new president.

The only potential option to constrain the hawkish Clinton would be the emergence of a “peace” wing of the Democratic Party, possibly aligned with Republican anti-interventionists. But that possibility remains problematic especially since those two political elements have major policy disagreements on a wide variety of other topics.

There also isn’t an obvious individual for the peace factions to organize around. Sen. Bernie Sanders, who mildly criticized Clinton’s advocacy of “regime change” operations during the primary campaign, is 75 years old and isn’t particularly known for his stands on foreign policy issues.

If Trump loses, the bombastic real-estate mogul would likely be a spent political force, possibly retreating into the paranoid “alt-right” world of conspiracy theories. Even now, his dovish objection to confronting Russia has been undermined by his tendency to speak carelessly about other national security topics, such as torture, terrorism and nuclear weapons.

One potential leader of a peace movement would be Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, a 35-year-old military veteran who is one of the few members of Congress to offer an insightful and courageous critique of the dangers from an interventionist foreign policy. But Gabbard would be putting her promising political career at risk if she challenged a sitting Democratic president, especially early in Clinton’s White House term.

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii.

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii.

Yet, without a modern-day Eugene McCarthy (the anti-Vietnam War Democrat who took on President Lyndon Johnson in 1968) to rally an anti-war movement from inside the Democratic Party, it is hard to imagine how significant political pressure could be put on a President Hillary Clinton. Virtually the entire mainstream U.S. media (and much of the progressive media) are onboard for a U.S. “regime change” operation in Syria and for getting tough with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Not Thought Through

These “group thinks” on Syria and Russia, like previous ones on Iraq and Libya, have not been thought through, but are driven instead by emotional appeals – photos of wounded children in Syria and animosity toward Putin for not wearing a shirt and not bowing to U.S. global supremacy. As with Iraq in 2003 and Libya in 2011, there is little consideration about what might follow a successful “regime change” scenario in Syria or Russia.

In Syria, a “no-fly zone” destroying Syria’s air force and air defenses could pave the way for a victory by Al Qaeda’s recently renamed Nusra Front and/or Al Qaeda’s spinoff, the Islamic State. How letting major terrorist groups control Damascus would be good for either the Syrian people or the United States gets barely mentioned.

The dreamy thinking is that somehow the hard-to-find “moderate” rebels – sometimes called the “unicorns” – would prevail, even though they have existed mostly as cut-outs and conduits so Al Qaeda and its allies can secure advanced U.S. weapons to use for killing Syrian soldiers.

Yet, even more dangerous is the already-launched destabilization campaign against nuclear-armed Russia, a policy that may feel-good because we’re taught to despise Vladimir Putin. But this latest neocon/liberal-hawk “regime change” scheme — even if it somehow were “successful” — is not likely to install in the Kremlin one of the U.S.-favored “liberals” who would allow the resumption of the 1990s-era plundering of Russia’s wealth.

Far more likely, an angry Russian population would go for a much-harder-line nationalist than Putin, someone who might see nuclear weapons as the only way to protect Mother Russia from another raping by the West. It’s not the cold-blooded Putin who should scare Americans, but the hot-headed guy next in line.

But none of these downsides – not even the existential downside of nuclear annihilation – is allowed to be discussed among Official Washington’s foreign policy elites. It’s all about giving Bashar al-Assad the “Gaddafi treatment” in Syria, punishing Iran even if that might cause its leaders to renounce the nuclear-arms agreement, and muscling NATO forces up to Russia’s borders and making the Russian economy scream.

And, behind these policies are some of the most skilled propagandists in the world. They are playing much of the U.S. population – and surely the U.S. media – like a fiddle.

Lock-Step Consensus

The propaganda campaign is driven by a consensus among the major think tanks of Official Washington, where there is near universal support for Hillary Clinton, not because they all particularly like her, but because she has signaled a return to neocon/liberal-hawk strategies.

Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright speaking at an Atlantic Council event.

Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright speaking at an Atlantic Council event.

As Greg Jaffe wrote for the neocon-dominated Washington Post on Friday, “In the rarefied world of the Washington foreign policy establishment, President Obama’s departure from the White House — and the possible return of a more conventional and hawkish Hillary Clinton — is being met with quiet relief.

“The Republicans and Democrats who make up the foreign policy elite are laying the groundwork for a more assertive American foreign policy, via a flurry of reports shaped by officials who are likely to play senior roles in a potential Clinton White House.

“It is not unusual for Washington’s establishment to launch major studies in the final months of an administration to correct the perceived mistakes of a president or influence his successor. But the bipartisan nature of the recent recommendations, coming at a time when the country has never been more polarized, reflects a remarkable consensus among the foreign policy elite.

“This consensus is driven by a broad-based backlash against a president who has repeatedly stressed the dangers of overreach and the need for restraint, especially in the Middle East. … Taken together, the studies and reports call for more-aggressive American action to constrain Iran, rein in the chaos in the Middle East and check Russia in Europe.”

One of the lead organizations revving up these military adventures and also counting on a big boost in military spending under President Clinton-45 is the Atlantic Council, a think tank associated with NATO that has been pushing for a major confrontation with nuclear-armed Russia.

Jaffe quotes former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, who is leading the Atlantic Council’s bipartisan Mideast team as saying about Syria: “The immediate thing is to do something to alleviate the horrors that are being visited on the population. … We do think there needs to be more American action — not ground forces but some additional help in terms of the military aspect.” (This is same “humanitarian” Albright who – in responding to a United Nations report that U.S. economic sanctions on Iraq in the 1990s had killed a half million Iraqi children – coldly said, “we think the price is worth it.”)

One of Albright’s partners on the Atlantic Council’s report, Bush’s last National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley, added that if Assad continues to bomb civilians, the United States should strongly consider “using standoff weapons, like cruise missiles, to neutralize his air force so that he cannot fly.”

The plans call for “safe zones” where Syrian rebels can base themselves behind U.S. military protection, allowing them to strike Syrian government forces but preventing the Syrian government from striking back. Little attention is paid to the fact that the so-called “moderate” rebels have refused to separate themselves from Al Qaeda’s forces who are in command of the rebel movement in east Aleppo and other urban areas.

As journalist/historian Gareth Porter has written: “Information from a wide range of sources, including some of those the United States has been explicitly supporting, makes it clear that every armed anti-Assad organization unit in those provinces [of Idlib and Aleppo] is engaged in a military structure controlled by [Al Qaeda’s] Nusra militants. All of these rebel groups fight alongside the Nusra Front and coordinate their military activities with it. …

“At least since 2014 the Obama administration has armed a number of Syrian rebel groups even though it knew the groups were coordinating closely with the Nusra Front, which was simultaneously getting arms from Turkey and Qatar.”

Ignoring the Masses

It also doesn’t seem to matter to these elites that many American commoners are fed up with these costly and bloody “regime change” schemes. As Hadley told the Post’s Jaffe, “Everyone has kind of given up on the Middle East. We have been at it for 15 years, and a lot of Americans think it is hopeless. … We think it is not.”

Former National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley speaking before the Atlantic Council.

Former National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley speaking before the Atlantic Council.

But it is not just the Republican neocons and old Democratic hawks who are determined to whip the American people into line behind more war. As Jaffe wrote, “A similar sentiment animates the left-leaning Center for American Progress’s report, which calls for more military action to counter Iranian aggression, more dialogue with the United States’ Arab allies and more support for economic and human rights reform in the region.”

These “liberal hawks” are enthused that now almost the entire foreign policy elite of Official Washington is singing from the same sheet of martial music. There is none of the discord that surrounded Bush’s war in Iraq last decade.

As Brian Katulis, a senior Middle East analyst at the Center for American Progress, said, “The dynamic is totally different from what I saw a decade ago.” He added that the current focus from all sides is on rebuilding a more muscular and more “centrist internationalism.”

In other words, the Iraq War “group think” that enveloped Official Washington before that catastrophe wasn’t total enough. Now, there is almost a totalitarian feel about the way the foreign policy elites, coordinating with the major U.S. news media, are marching the American people toward possibly even worse disasters.

No serious dissent is allowed; no contrarian thoughts expressed; no thinking through where the schemes might end up – unless you want to be marginalized as an Assad “apologist” or a Putin “puppet.” And right now, there doesn’t seem to be any practical way to stop this new march of folly.

Investigative reporter Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories for The Associated Press and Newsweek in the 1980s. You can buy his latest book, America’s Stolen Narrative, either in print here or as an e-book (from Amazon and barnesandnoble.com).

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118 comments for “Washington’s New Lock-Step March of Folly

  1. Randal Marlin
    October 22, 2016 at 10:56 am

    Sad news. I would expect France to resist this scenario, and that “freedom fries” will be reintroduced into ordinary discourse to replace “French fries.”

    • Mark in BC
      October 25, 2016 at 9:06 am

      Ironically it’s Walter Jones, R-NC that coined “Freedom Fries” that is at the helm of the peace wing of the Republican Party. He’s been anti-war/interventionist since about 2005 when he realized what lies were sold as truth to go after Iraq. Neocons have tried to unseat him but, have so far failed. His district also includes some of the largest American military installations in the world.

  2. J'hon Doe II
    October 22, 2016 at 11:10 am

    Happenings / Hypnotism

    “You’re going to be told lots of things.
    You get told things every day that don’t happen.

    It doesn’t seem to bother people, they don’t—
    It’s printed in the press.
    The world thinks all these things happen.
    They never happened.

    Everyone’s so eager to get the story
    Before in fact the story’s there
    That the world is constantly being fed
    Things that haven’t happened.

    All I can tell you is,
    It hasn’t happened.
    It’s going to happen.”

    Defense Secretary Donald -crazy- Rumsfeld
    —Feb. 28, 2003, Department of Defense briefing
    ::
    So, the question is, what truth is he telling???

    • October 23, 2016 at 10:07 am
      • J'hon Doe II
        October 24, 2016 at 12:21 pm

        In the greater scheme of things, both of them are Anglo-American Fascist Puppets dancing by strings controlled by Deep State and European Capitalists. (Central Banks, IMF, Zionist etc.)

        • BEard681
          October 25, 2016 at 3:56 pm

          Both? Then why is all the Wall Street and Oligarch money going to Clinton? Even the Koch Brothers are “Never Trump”

  3. Michael Eremia
    October 22, 2016 at 11:19 am

    Brilliant ! Unfortunately for humanity, the American public is addicted to 24/7 entertainment shows. Our people are clueless, and are totally devoid of the consequences that will flow from the election of President Hillary Clinton: War, War, War.

    • Roberto
      October 22, 2016 at 5:49 pm

      Yes, but the awakening is rude.

      • Kiza
        October 22, 2016 at 8:25 pm

        Would they really care, if they do not get roasted in a nuclear apocalypse? As long as even the more aggressive US policies (of a weakening hegemon), prove that US is still mighty by throwing a few countries up against the wall this will be a source of national pride. No person’s or child’s life on this planet is worth the US pride in its military might, because America was born on the streets, as the movie says: http://t2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQH5q3fv0sN6sIFmBTb7Wqn4pb_fymvhj8aM_PpYgBHAizH8GWv

  4. Cal
    October 22, 2016 at 11:32 am

    Maybe its time the sheep in the US had a real war on their own soil with another super power like Russia—the ones who survive it might then learn something.

    • Roberto
      October 22, 2016 at 5:51 pm

      I’ve been telling my wife, “We need more ammo!”

      • Tom
        October 22, 2016 at 6:01 pm

        And a year’s food supply.

        • Roberto
          October 22, 2016 at 6:12 pm

          Antibiotics too.

        • Roberto
          October 22, 2016 at 6:42 pm

          And, I almost forgot, potassium iodide.

          • tjoe
            October 23, 2016 at 8:28 pm

            You guys are crazy. I was certified in radiological civil defense in 1983. The projection was that 17% of the US dies in the initial attacks but then 50% more would not make it through the nuke winter that follows. That’s 2/3 of the US population that doesn’t survive. Lets put that in numbers, about 45,000,000 US citizens die in the initial attack and then 150,000,000 US citizens starve, have no water, have extreme radiation burns, have no food and the beltways around cities become barriers, trapping the inhabitants as they starve and freeze to death.

            Do you have a food or generator, guns and ammo? There will be roving gangs that will home in on the generator noise or see that you are not starving like the rest. You may shoot the first 50 but the next 500 will take your shit and kill you. Anyone that thinks that is survivable or for some reason desires it is mental, a fool and has absolutely no wisdom….aka NEO.

            So don’t forget those Potassium Iodine tabs on your next trip to the store.

          • KCSteak
            October 24, 2016 at 2:40 pm

            tjoe, maybe the ruling class is hoping for the outcome you described.

      • Cal
        October 24, 2016 at 7:24 pm

        ”…..have no water, have extreme radiation burns, ” ..tjoe

        No , both Russia and the US will use their thermo bombs, the ones that suck all the oxygen out of the air and kill every living thing. Leaves no radiation so the victor can move in and re-plant the land and make it livable again.

        • J. D.
          October 27, 2016 at 2:06 pm

          Dream on. There will be no winner and no human race.

    • October 23, 2016 at 10:41 am

      BINGO! Cal.

      Putin responds to Joe Biden on cyber attacks. He tells Americans you are being distracted.

      http://www.veteransnewsnow.com/2016/10/21/1010190-putin-responds-to-joe-biden-on-cyber-attacks/

  5. Gregory Kruse
    October 22, 2016 at 11:48 am

    I think this is a correct analysis, and I am experiencing a deep sense of melancholy, but also a sense of appreciation that a picture of Tulsi Gabbard is on the page instead of the usual picture of Muammar Gaddafi moments before he was impaled and brutally murdered. Clinton’s ambition knows no bounds, and her morality, like that of Madeleine Albright and Henry Kissinger has no core.

  6. bill
    October 22, 2016 at 11:55 am

    she hasnt sung yet folks

    • Joe B
      October 23, 2016 at 8:49 am

      There are no final songs to excuse Killary’s consistent warmaking in every US conflict since the 1990s. She is an idiot and a danger to civilization, who will certainly cause more wars for campaign bribes.

    • October 23, 2016 at 10:16 am

      True.

      Washington D.C. is a filthy cesspool of criminality and corruption and Thanks to Trump’s LOUD Trumpet, the American public now know it.

      Hillary reeks of Lies and Corruption. What has Hillary done for the Middle Class in 30 years ?

      Hillary Clinton will manage to lie, cheat or steal her way to the White House.

      No doubt the election itself is going to be rigged (stolen) in order to make sure Hillary Clinton(the WAR candidate) wins. Town hall questions are rigged, debate questions are rigged, the polls are rigged, the news coverage is rigged, the justice system is rigged.

      The media dutifully covers up all HILLARY’s scandals.

      The Podesta emails reveal unprecedented criminal collusion between the State Dept and the Clinton Foundation.

      http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/oct/18/undercover-video-shows-democrats-saying-they-hire-/

      REMEMBER SANDERS SUPPORTERS WERE DECEIVED BY DNC
      REMEMBER RON PAUL SUPPORTERS WERE DECEIVED BY RNC

      They make up the bulk of TRUMP SUPPORTERS.

      It will not be over until the fat lady sings so, don’t count your chickens before they hatch.

      Let us see whether this is actually a revolution or just a coup, and who is sitting in the American Catbird Seat after all.

      We will see who is in charge then and decide whether we have had a revolution or not but,…. until then… it is NOT over by a long shot!

      • Rick Moore
        October 25, 2016 at 11:19 am

        I concur Debbie! Thank you!

  7. Patrick
    October 22, 2016 at 11:58 am

    Even if all the above is true Russia has changed the balance in Syria. Putin has shown he can not be intimidated. I do not think
    the US hawks will risk a humiliating defeat in Syria. I wish there were more comments on this site. Not enough people reading it.

    • J'hon Doe II
      October 22, 2016 at 12:17 pm

      Patrick – “I do not think the US hawks will risk a humiliating defeat in Syria.”

      THEY LIED US INTO WAR!!!
      They are hell bent.
      Relentless Destructive Power is at The Core of US and that needs to be our perspective as opposed to our United Permissiveness, which is our path to doom.
      Who can’t hear the wakeup call…?

      • Roberto
        October 22, 2016 at 6:33 pm

        They lied people into a war with Rome and got the Second Temple destroyed too.

        They are in a word, “stupid.”

      • Stephen Sivonda
        October 23, 2016 at 10:47 pm

        J’hon….yes, I feel them same sense of a sort of helplessness….I’ve got lots of friends on F/B but only about 10% rail against the actions of the “West and it’s coalition’ ….Our leaders are vile corrupt psychotic hypocrites. God save the Republic!

    • backwardsevolution
      October 22, 2016 at 12:51 pm

      Patrick – lots of people read, but they don’t comment. Get the word out as much as you can by posting this article all over the Internet. If you don’t know how to do that (you probably do), we can help you.

    • Roberto
      October 22, 2016 at 6:06 pm
    • Roberto
      October 22, 2016 at 6:11 pm
  8. WG
    October 22, 2016 at 12:08 pm

    Great article Mr. Perry!

    Its truly mind boggling how crazy these think-tank ‘experts’ and high ranking government officials are. The longer all this continues the more clear it is that the colossal failures of their policies (Iraq, Libya, Syria) are not tragic accidents, they are the intended results.

  9. Zachary Smith
    October 22, 2016 at 12:44 pm

    We’re in trouble, and if there is any way to avoid the coming chaos, I don’t know what it might be. The milblogger at the Saker site seems to have the same viewpoint as Mr. Parry on this issue. Here is the beginning of his essay:

    [if] Hillary wins. That’s Obama on steroids, only worse. Remember that Obama himself was Dubya, only worse. Of course, Dubya was just Clinton, only worse. Now the circle is closed. Back to Clinton. Except this time around, we have a women who is deeply insecure, who failed at every single thing that she every tried to do, and who now has a 3 decades long record of disasters and failures. Even when she had no authority to start a war, she started one (told Bill to bomb the Serbs). Now she has that authority. And now she had to stand there, in front of millions of people, and hear Trump tell her “Putin outsmarted you at every step of the way” (did you see her frozen face when he said that?). Trump is right, Putin did outsmart her and Obama at every step. The problem is that now, after having a President with an inferiority complex towards Putin (Obama) we will have a President with the very same inferiority complex and a morbid determination to impose a no-fly zone over Russian forces in Syria. Looking at Hillary, with her **** short hair and ridiculous pants, I thought to myself “this is a woman who is trying hard to prove that she is every bit as tough and any man” – except of course that she ain’t. Her record also shows her as being weak, cowardly and with a sense of total impunity. And now, that evil messianic lunatic with a deep-seated inferiority complex is going to become Commander in Chief?! God help us all!

    http://thesaker.is/the-usa-are-about-to-face-the-worst-crisis-of-their-history-and-how-putins-example-might-inspire-trump/

    This fellow appears to believe there is a sliver of hope Trump can still be elected. That’s Pipe Dream stuff, in my own opinion. Like with Kerry in 2004, I truly believe Trump is playing to lose. My latest evidence of that springs from reports of the third debate – one which I did NOT watch. Go to the Zero Hedge site yourself to see this latest conspiracy notion. If the story is true, then it’s almost a mirror of the 2004 debate where some kind of device was hidden under Bush’s jacket. That Hillary might be in such bad health as to require some ‘assistance’ to get her through the debates isn’t surprising. That it may have been so obviously visible yet totally ignored by her nominal opponent and the Corporate Media tells me the “Fix” truly is on. That’s assuming the whole thing isn’t a photoshopped gag and I’m a complete sucker.

    hXXp://www.zerohedge.com/

    • backwardsevolution
      October 22, 2016 at 1:25 pm

      Zachary Smith – I’ve read several times recently how Clinton supporters and paid trolls are going around stating that Trump doesn’t stand a chance, that it’s all over, Clinton has won, she will be the next president. Hey, say it enough times and people actually might start believing it. Their motive for doing this is to make Trump supporters feel that it would be useless to go out and vote for Trump; after all, they’ve read over and over that he’s going to lose. I mean, they might think, “If it’s all over, what’s the point?” Which is exactly what the Clinton people want them to think.

      Nice try. Get out and vote for Trump. People hate Clinton, they do not feel safe with her. She is a warmonger, a crook and a liar. Do not listen to people who tell you that it’s all over. They are just trying to steer you away from bothering to vote.

      • Zachary Smith
        October 22, 2016 at 1:48 pm

        People hate Clinton, they do not feel safe with her. She is a warmonger, a crook and a liar. Do not listen to people who tell you that it’s all over. They are just trying to steer you away from bothering to vote.

        Trump has successfully maneuvered himself into a position where he can’t possibly win – that’s the view of most everybody. Wishing it was otherwise may be a little comforting, but that’s not how the Real World tea-leaves are pointing.

        Given that universal attitude, it’s now safe turn loose the no-verify Touchscreen Voting Machine Hackers. Hillary & Company might just do that now despite not needing them for her actual election. She’s wanting a Congress which is in the palm of her hand – a landslide. Attaining that goal with the assistance of the hackers is not an unthinkable proposition.

        As I said in a previous post, I wrote in the name of Jill Stein. And voted for my idiot knuckle dragger Republican congressman. That latter was probably a waste of time, for he’s at least as likely to vote for Hillary’s wars as any Democrat. But I can hope.

        • backwardsevolution
          October 22, 2016 at 2:00 pm

          I don’t see it that way, Zachary. “That’s the view of most everybody”? Who is this “everybody”? The lying media? Think tanks, politicians, economists, neocons, Facebook, Twitter, Jeff Bezos, Soros?

          Yeah, right, like they don’t have a vested interest in maintaining the corrupt status quo!

          Brexit wasn’t going to pass either – whoops, until it did.

          Hillary is as corrupt as they come, and a bunch of neocons hoping and wishing she will win doesn’t make it so. People are waking up every single day now, and the election can’t come soon enough for her. I do not think she will get over the finish line in one piece, unless, as you say, they start friggin with the Diebold machines. If they try it, there will be hell to pay.

          • Kiza
            October 22, 2016 at 8:40 pm

            Spot on. Some of the Clintonite trolls have a brief to claim that Trump actually works to support Hillary’s election (“treason at the top level”). And they use this closed amplification circle between MSM-online-trolling to re-inforce this bull. I know that US people are not the Brits to show that they do not fall for the regime propaganda and to do Brexit, but the US people could still surprise us.

            After all, their choice in two weeks time will determine their fortune too: even more of the corrupt Status Quo or an attempt at change, no matter how imperfect it may be and by a person who is far from a saint. Trump would slow the decline, Clinton would accelerate it.

          • Kiza
            October 23, 2016 at 3:09 am

            Looking at several British post-intervention reports, such as Chilcot enquiry on attack on Iraq and Foreign Affairs Committee report on attack on Libya, although threading most softly, softly in regards to the elite, it is quite obvious that the problem is the same in all Western countries – the appointment of crooks from the same crooked elite into top jobs of the national agencies. In other words, it is not only that the fish rots from the head, then it is only the head has rotted. Most members of the intelligence agencies and other government agencies etc are honest, law abiding, normal people with a capability for human compassion. But the careerists and psychopaths are appointed to the top of the services and there the normal flow of information gets interrupted and skewed in favor of military interventions. There is always some kind of emergency which justifies rushing into war to make the profit on it.

            Unless we depose the current sickly corrupt elite (such as Hillary) we will never be able to stop wars, never.

          • Ann Tattersall
            October 23, 2016 at 3:35 am

            No hell was paid when HRC stole the 2016 California Democratic primary. That’s where the 2016 presidential election was stolen. It’s done. Now what?

          • Kiza
            October 23, 2016 at 8:41 am

            No, that was the first part of the steal, now she will steal the second part.

          • Get me out
            October 23, 2016 at 1:16 pm

            Speaking of hell to pay, Hillary’s popularity, or lack thereof, is such that it’s highly realistic that she could win the electoral college but lose the popular vote to Trump. Can you imagine the amount of hell waiting in the wings if that happens? It’s highly likely that millennials are not included in these polls and the third parties’ numbers are being downplayed

          • Kiza
            October 24, 2016 at 4:40 am

            All MSM polls are doctored under detailed DNC guidance, how to skew the sampling state by state: http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-10-23/new-podesta-email-exposes-dem-playbook-rigging-polls-through-oversamples

            Are they trying to substantiate the numbers ahead of stealing the election?

        • Tom
          October 22, 2016 at 6:05 pm

          Of course the Republicons hacked in a controlled the voting machines (Diebold…a right wing corporation) in 2001 and 2008…so maybe once again the GOP can pull it off…who knows.

          • Joe B
            October 23, 2016 at 8:58 am

            Any such hack will be for Killary this time. Hence their concern about whether Trump would “accept” the result. There is no honor among politicians or CEOs- the election will certainly be hacked. It is Diebold et al who are voting, and no one else.

      • dahoit
        October 26, 2016 at 10:35 am

        Yes,agree totally,and the Wash establishment might be the largest collection of overweening prideful scum losers since Masada in 70 AD.
        Manufacturing dissent aint going to work no more no how.
        Serial liars lie serially.
        Trump for POTUS.

    • Roberto
      October 22, 2016 at 7:55 pm
    • October 23, 2016 at 12:00 pm

      Thank you for sharing this post Zachary Smith.

      It is being disseminated:

      http://www.veteransnewsnow.com/2016/10/23/1010237-the-usa-are-about-to-face-the-worst-crisis-of-their-history/

      This election is the last non-violent opportunity to take your country back

      Stand your ground and refuse to be enslaved. Washington is being ruled by a criminal cartel, aka, AngloZionists.

      ?Vote for Donald Trump or LOSE America forever

  10. Fabio Soldati
    October 22, 2016 at 12:49 pm

    Trump and Hillary are two faces of the same coin . Since 1950 (Korea) what America wants is to dominate the world and to perpetuate conflicts for the interest of its economy. When a war was finished another one was invented , Wallstreet and the the jewish lobby have always been the puppeteers of CIA, Senate and of the President. The military of the United States is deployed in more than 150 countries around the world, with nearly 150,000 of its active-duty personnel serving outside the United States and its territories.The United States is the largest operator of military bases in 31 countries. The the most dangerous product that USA exports is its democracy.

  11. Lin Cleveland
    October 22, 2016 at 12:52 pm

    Thanks, Robert! We have lots to think about here.

    The only potential option to constrain the hawkish Clinton would be the emergence of a “peace” wing of the Democratic Party, possibly aligned with Republican anti-interventionists. But that possibility remains problematic especially since those two political elements have major policy disagreements on a wide variety of other topics."__Robert Parry

    You know what, everybody? I suspect it’s not the “major policy disagreements” that stand in the way, but what both factions hold in common. The U.S. economy depends so much on the continued manufacture and sales of weapons that should peace break out the almighty stock market would be sent into a tail spin. Personally, I think that in the long run that could result in a positive. First, the empire would fall forcing Uncle Sam away from nation building and to return to infrastructure building. We’d all, including the .001%, need to tighten our belts in order to transition into a more stable economic paradigm. Too many U.S. citizens have been drawn into the instant gratification insanity, never considering the long term effects only what “I want now!” mode. This consumerist based economy runs on ever expanding debt accumulation and therefor, cannot be sustained for ever.

    “There also isn’t an obvious individual for the peace factions to organize around. Sen. Bernie Sanders, who mildly criticized Clinton’s advocacy of “regime change” operations during the primary campaign, is 75 years old and isn’t particularly known for his stands on foreign policy issues.”__Robert Parry

    Sanders is not a socialist, but a Democratic-socialist whose personal well-being depends on maintaining capitalism. However, I snagged the above quote to mention the obvious hypocrisy of accusations that Assange in cahoots with Russia is hacking the Democrats in order to influence this election. Gee whiz! Haiti, the Philippines, Honduras, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Syria and you name it! The American empire has long involved itself in regime change.

    Lock-Step Consensus

    “The propaganda campaign is driven by a consensus among the major think tanks of Official Washington, where there is near universal support for Hillary Clinton, not because they all particularly like her, but because she has signaled a return to neocon/liberal-hawk strategies”__Robert Parry

    Exactly, Robert! Almost seems like a conspiracy from the big right political wing and the smaller right wing to ensure We_the_People believe Clinton won in a democratic-style election. Even the main stream media obsesses over Trump’s foibles, while downplaying or ignoring Clinton’s. Of course, the MSM unlike Consortium News serves as a propaganda arm of the corrupted system. Those who support the status quo believe their plans will run smoother with Clinton in the Oval Office. Recently, I listened to Glen Ford of Black Agenda Report explain why Trump, also a member of the billionaire class, so offends his fellow rich kids. Simply, Glen asserts, it’s because Trump dares to question the legitimacy of our so-called democratic election system. A whole lot of citizens do agree that “the system is rigged,” but it’s taboo for a candidate or beltway insider to say so. Just as Parry concludes:

    “No serious dissent is allowed; no contrarian thoughts expressed; no thinking through where the schemes might end up – unless you want to be marginalized as an Assad “apologist” or a Putin “puppet.” And right now, there doesn’t seem to be any practical way to stop this new march of folly.”

  12. backwardsevolution
    October 22, 2016 at 1:02 pm

    Everyone should watch this new five-minute video put out about Trump. It’s powerful and well done. Trump speaks about going after the corrupt elite, talks about the lying media, the Clinton’s, trade deals, and he sounds plenty presidential to me.

    “Our movement is about replacing a failed and corrupt political establishment with a new government controlled by you, the American People. There is nothing the political establishment will not do, and no lie they will not tell, to hold on to their prestige and power at your expense.

    The Washington establishment, and the financial and media corporations that fund it, exists for only one reason: to protect and enrich itself.

    The establishment has trillions of dollars at stake in this election. As an example, just one single trade deal they’d like to pass, involves trillions of dollars controlled by many countries, corporations and lobbyists.

    For those who control the levers of power in Washington, and for the global special interests they partner with, our campaign represents an existential threat. […]

    The most powerful weapon deployed by the Clinton’s is the corporate media. Let’s be clear on one thing: the corporate media in our country is no longer involved in journalism. They are a political special interest, no different than any lobbyist or other financial entity with an agenda. And their agenda is to elect the Clinton’s at any cost, at any price, no matter how many lives they destroy.

    For them, it is a war – and for them, nothing is out of bounds.

    This is a struggle for the survival of our nation. This election will determine whether we are a free nation, or whether we have only the illusion of Democracy but are in fact controlled by a small handful of global special interests rigging the system.

    This is not just conspiracy but reality, and you and I know it.

    The establishment and their media enablers wield control over this nation through means that are well known. Anyone who challenges their control is deemed a sexist, a racist, a xenophobe and morally deformed. They will attack you, they will slander you, they will seek to destroy your career and reputation. And they will lie, lie and lie even more.”

    Read the rest here:

    https://theconservativetreehouse.com/2016/10/21/stunning-donald-trump-speech-the-crossroads-in-our-history-video-and-transcript/

  13. Ol' Hippy
    October 22, 2016 at 1:09 pm

    To watch regular TV is akin to watching The Wizard of Oz, except the man behind the curtain is doing all the bad things out in the REAL world. We need someone with some political pull to wake up the sleeping Americans and clue them in on what’s really going on in the world. Global warming; nary a mention in the “debates”, wars launched in the name of fat checks for weapons makers; again not a peep. All that’s left is a concise timeline for the eventual collapse of American society as we once knew it, and yes it’s coming soon I believe. All the signs are in place as I’ve studied the beginnings of both of the last world wars and some of the parallels are uncanny in the similarities. Americans need to wake up and read publications such as this one and counterpunch which is also good at honest reporting without all the worthless fluff that passes for the nonsense on TV. Someone take note please; and then start a peace movement such as the ones against The ‘Nam in the 60’s and early 70’s before it really is too late.

    • backwardsevolution
      October 22, 2016 at 1:39 pm

      Ol’ Hippy – the people don’t know about this site. And how are you going to wake up the sleeping Americans when the media is working to make sure that certain information does NOT get out?

      There shouldn’t be any debates. Each candidate should be given an exhaustive list of questions which they must answer. These answers should be listed online and in major newspapers. That’s it, their policies laid out for all to see. That way their views on global warming, no-fly zones, immigration, trade deals, capital gains, Wall Street, etc. can be laid out completely.

      But, you’re right, there needs to be more done. The American people need to also know how much money these arms dealers are making, how much is going to farm subsidies, etc. They need to know how much they’d save if there weren’t medical monopolies. These facts could be laid out as well by the candidates and printed in the major newspapers and online.

      The American people are not stupid. They’re just not getting the facts. The elite like it like that.

      • Erik
        October 23, 2016 at 9:09 am

        This is why I advocate a national College of Policy Analysis as a fourth branch of federal government, because there is no rational public or Congressional debate. The College is to textually debate among experts the issues of every region using every discipline, rigorously protecting the minority or inconvenient opinions which later prove to have been the seed of reconciliation or the essential but overlooked perspective. Its product is to be compact debate summaries commented by all sides and available to the public by internet. Every debate can define side issues for debate, and can be conducted again as circumstances change.

        Even amendments to restrict funding of mass media and elections cannot enable real debate in an elected Congress. The public needs the compact debate summaries to learn issues quickly, debate intelligently, and ground their viewpoints.

        Most of the great policy failures since WWII could have been avoided if the issues had been explored and debated thoroughly in advance. Politicians would ignore such an impartial database at their peril, and could be quickly exposed as incompetent or biased if unfamiliar with the factual base and the various viewpoints.

    • David G
      October 22, 2016 at 3:42 pm

      I’m reading “The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914” by Christopher Clark precisely to immiserate myself with the parallels to today.

    • Vietvet68
      October 22, 2016 at 6:11 pm

      Ol Hippy…Great idea but the peace movement of the 60’s was helped by the draft which is gone. Nobody cares. Wars don’t effect them. It’s distant. Only 1% of the population has anything to do with the military. Americans have been cut off from their military. Congress will not even debate and vote on war anymore…leaving it up to the President…obama and soon to be billary and her neocon administration. They will be free to carry out more wars while America is distracted with silly tv. If we really want a movement work like hell to get the military draft back. That will do it.

  14. Tania Messina
    October 22, 2016 at 1:35 pm

    Robert Parry: I always read your columns with great interest, mostly agree with your thoughts, and very unhappily agree with your views here about our seemingly bleak future. It truly is a very sad state of affairs when journalism in “democratic” America has turned into such an obviously controlled propagandistic outlet that so many of us have turned our backs on these controlled hacks and lying rags to find true free thinking and honesty in order to get a more balanced picture.

    Please check out the link below by a writer who has a very special talent for clarity; in my opinion, it would be a great service to your readers to publish this very clear, concise and meaningful piece, which goes beyond who actually wins the election. Instead, it is about a revolutionary movement that Trump, despite himself, has brought to the surface in our country, a very necessary movement at a time where we have come to a crossroads, and perhaps a river of no return!

    http://www.gilad.co.uk/writings/2016/10/21/the-meaning-of-trump

  15. Bob Van Noy
    October 22, 2016 at 1:46 pm

    Thank you Robert Parry for your serious concern. I agree. Things are looking especially dismal as we approach this election cycle. It was appropriate that you included the photograph of Rep. Tulsi Gabbard in this piece as she will be one to look to in opposition to the War Neocons. I’m hoping that Russ Finegold is elected to the Senate as well, and that he can be counted on to be a powerful voice in the opposition.

    If Hillary is elected she will have a coalition of Democrats and Republicans true, but she will not have a mandate, not that that will stop her administration at all but I think she will organize her approach to governing to the right, which is natural for her. That will cause her to quickly loose support from the moderate left and those voters will ally with the peaceful left. Also, I think she is a neoliberal on economics and quickly it will become apparent she is for Big Business and not the one percent, Social Security will be “on the table”. She’s going to have a tough time with much opposition. Organizing an effective opposition is the only course I can see from here on out…

  16. Abe
    October 22, 2016 at 1:48 pm

    Planning, preparation, initiation or waging of a war of aggression is a crime under international law.

    During the third presidential debate, Hillary Clinton declared her plan to “press into Syria” and “move on into Syria” directly after the military “take back” of Mosul.

    As pointed out by Salman Rafi Sheikh, a research-analyst of International Relations, military forces are being deployed to enact Clinton’s criminal war plan:

    “an IS defeat in Mosul would encourage it to head west to try to defeat the Assad regime in Syria.

    “While the Syrian army will be eventually forced into yet another battle, such a situation might also create an excuse for the US, which has largely been out-manoeuvred by Russia in Syria, to start a direct military operation in Syria, as a ‘necessary’ extension of battle for Mosul, and thereby confront Syrian and Russian forces more directly.

    “These suspicions have scarcely been allayed by a series of comments from American generals and US military sources over the past few weeks. The newly appointed US commander in the region, Lt Gen Stephen Townsend heading what the US has presumptuously called `Operation Inherent Resolve` has said that not only Mosul but the Syrian city of Raqqa would be captured `on my watch`–a clear expression of the extension of the operation into Syria and, as such, use the scenario to reverse the gains Syria has recently had against the jihadists.

    “That the US continues to intend to use ‘jihadists’ in Syria is evident from the fact that the US, along with its allies, did block Russia’s draft statement supporting the 8-hour humanitarian pause in Aleppo and separating Syrian rebels and terrorists.

    “The refusal by the US to separate the ‘rebels’ from terrorists is not only yet another indication of the US’ double-game in Syria but also signifies the use the US wants to put all fighters to. Perhaps, as some analysts have reasoned, this is all linked to the US’ ‘Plan B’ for Syria. With US top military officials bragging about taking the cities of Mosul and Raqqa and with US still clinging to protecting terror groups based in Syria, the picture that appears does point out to a bigger plan in play than meets the eye.

    “As such, the mysterious ‘Plan B’ would then look like this: the US victoriously trumpets on about the arduous offensive of retaking Mosul while the jihadists, who had covertly left the city, go on with their fight against Russia and Assad in Syria and re-create the chaos Syria has long been subjected to.

    “Therefore, to achieve this particular target, US forces will play a decisively leading role. While Apache attack helicopters equipped with Hellfire missiles have been striking targets in northern Iraq, the American and French artillery are also positioned to provide crucial support and set the trajectory of the fight. What else could we expect than the jihadists re-shifting to Syria, allowing the US to clear Mosul and sell it as an ‘unmistakable evidence’ of victory against terrorism?”

    The re-taking of Mosul: What’s the long the and short of it?
    By Salman Rafi Sheikh
    http://journal-neo.org/2016/10/22/the-re-taking-of-mosul-what-s-the-long-the-and-short-of-it/

  17. backwardsevolution
    October 22, 2016 at 1:54 pm

    Almost all media, think tanks, economists, professors, politicians, online services (Facebook, Twitter, Google, YouTube), ex-presidents from the other party, the entertainment industry, foreign dignitaries and politicians, IMF, WTO, NATO, the military-industrial complex are 100% against Trump. They are going after him with a vengeance the American people have never seen before.

    What does that tell you? That maybe these guys are fighting for their very lives? Watch the Trump video:

    https://theconservativetreehouse.com/2016/10/21/stunning-donald-trump-speech-the-crossroads-in-our-history-video-and-transcript/

    • Tania Messina
      October 22, 2016 at 2:43 pm

      backwardsevolution: Thanks for the link. Even though it has obviously been put together, one has to wonder why we seldom have the chance to hear Trump as the eloquent person that he can be, and if not totally eloquent, at least speaking the truth that THEY refuse to hear! You are so right, if THEY are ALL against him, and THEY are ALL corrupt, shouldn’t that send us a message?

      Please look at the below link, which shows the necessary movement that Trump has started in this country.

      http://www.gilad.co.uk/writings/2016/10/21/the-meaning-of-trump

      • backwardsevolution
        October 22, 2016 at 5:54 pm

        Tania – good link, thanks. You can see it all across history, can’t you, a movement whose time has come. Trump is unpolished and outspoken, not beholden to anyone. That is what was needed. He’s given people a voice and he’s exposing what’s behind the curtain. How many others would do this? Not many. That’s why the elite hate him so much. The people are starting to wake up. Thanks, Tania.

  18. Joey
    October 22, 2016 at 1:58 pm

    Pretty discouraging article, at least for me.
    On the one hand, the choice is for a media/press created sweet little old Granny, but who reportedly laughs and squeals on hearing that her adversary has just been bayoneted in the bum by savages.
    On the other hand, is a rather bombastic non PC guy who annoys the gentle minded by forcefully relating to them the truth as he believes, but then is dismissed in this article as just another “conspiracy theorist.”

    So, there is no other choice, except the seemingly phoney libertarian, or the green utopiaist.

    So, sigh deeply and discard the “conspiracy theorist ” (terminology getting pretty cottonpicking old by the way), and just accept the press created angelic Granny, Who will doubtless care for the underprivileged masses by ballooning the massive 20 thousand billion dollar guvamint liar loans.

    In the real old reality days of the fifties, we had an expression for this kind of tripe. “Make up your mind, Bud.. Either crap, or get off of the pot.”

    My suggestion. Apply to Jon Rapopports blog. No More Fake News. Where the punches land fair and square.
    No this or that, or maybes.

  19. backwardsevolution
    October 22, 2016 at 2:12 pm

    In just a few days we will begin open enrollment for everyone in Obamacare now.

    “The Democrat Nightmare on Elm Street:

    In just a few days we will begin open enrollment for everyone in Obamacare now.

    Eight days before the election, that is.

    This is what the nation is going to face:

    Approved hikes just under 20%: Colorado, Florida and Idaho
    Approved hikes 20% to 29%: Connecticut, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland
    Approved hikes 30% to 49%: Alabama, Delaware, Hawaii, Kansas, Mississippi, Texas
    Approved hikes 50% to 92%: Arizona, Illinois, Montana, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania and Tennessee
    Approved hikes 93%: New Mexico

    There is nothing the Democrats can do about it either — 22 states with massive double-digit premium hikes, 7 of them in excess of 50%.

    Many are considered “safe” Democrat states — Colorado, Maryland, Illinois, Connecticut, Hawaii, Pennsylvania.

    Then there’s Arizona, Florida, Maine and New Mexico.

    How safe is PA? Illinois will have a million dead voters show up at the polls; they’re the land of 102% turnout and nobody has gone to jail in the modern era for doing it, so you can forget that.

    Everyone thinks Pennsylvania is clean for Clinton, with “Real Clear” claiming a 6% advantage. How “real” and “clear” is that, and how fast will it evaporate like a fart in the wind with 50%+ Obamacare price hikes hitting the residents of the state in the face a week before the election?

    I will say it again: Trump has a card he has not played, and it’s not “repeal and replace.”

    It’s jail and indict, and he needs to stick that right now out under the electorate’s nose along with these price hikes — not proposed, not thought about, but approved and coming right up the electorate’s ass a week before election day.”

    https://market-ticker.org/akcs-www?post=231581

    Karl Denninger has been pounding the table about medical monopolies for years. He says there are laws on the books regarding these monopolies, but they are not being enforced. He argues that these monopolies must be ended.

  20. Joe B
    October 22, 2016 at 2:18 pm

    Here is a positive thought on the potential future under Killary. The fact is that the US is in decline, overextended militarily and financially, and overbalanced by developing economies. Therefore the humiliation of its oligarchy is inevitable, and is the only path to its reconstruction, and is being accelerated by the warmongers. So the stupider they are, the sooner we are rid of them.

    The next moves, as Putin and Duterte have hinted, are isolation and encirclement of the US, which must happen in the next 20-40 years, and the sooner the better. Putin hinted that Russia may establish a naval base in Egypt, encircling Israel as it deserves, and in Cuba. Better relations of China and Russia with Mexico are the next step of encirclement. At some point the US looks foolish, the warmongers’ cries of Wolf have brought their wolves to the door, and they howl the louder.

    At some point the proxies of US warmongers, like Ukraine, the Philippines, perhaps Poland and Vietnam, decide that the US is not paying as promised and is weakening relative to China and Russia. They will not want to be the scene of war and will see greater stability and economic benefit on the other side.

    In the US, we will see South America and even Mexico wanting more than subsidies for drug wars and immigration suppression. China and Russia will unite more and more publicly with them. With foreign support for the peasants, the US will begin to lose its right-wing wars of oligarchy, and the peasants will more violently suppress their upper classes to prevent counter-revolutions. All of this will enrage the US right wing, who will scream for military confrontations, but it will be all to the good of the people of the US.

    When we start to hear about SA and Mexico lifting their people from poverty as China did in 40 years, as real standards of living continue to fall in the US, the sheeple of the US will wonder what a bill of goods they have been sold for several generations. Maybe we should have stuck with the New Deal.

    • backwardsevolution
      October 22, 2016 at 2:32 pm

      Joe B – I’ve read that 60% of all exports coming out of China are from U.S. multinationals doing business over there, accessing cheap labor/no environmental controls. 60%!

      I’ve also read that China has done well BECAUSE it is U.S.-made. U.S. corporations, banks, economists, technology flooded into China. Without this help, China would still be back in the stone age.

      This is not to put down China, but just to point out that the U.S. was instrumental in getting China to where it is today. Your own country and politicians made it easy for corporations to offshore jobs. The key was to build China while the U.S. declined into service jobs.

      And China is extremely corrupt and tremendously in debt. The elite are fleeing the country, squirreling their money away in foreign countries before the Chinese peasants hang them. The Chinese elite have stripped the country, put it into massive debt, for which the people will have to pay.

      The Chinese Silk Road – if the U.S. didn’t secretly want this, it wouldn’t have happened. I think that China is just another puppet of the U.S. government, not any different from Japan.

      • Joe B
        October 22, 2016 at 5:41 pm

        Yes, US investment and trade have been key inputs, without any humanitarian intent. But since well before the US trade increased in the 1980s, China has very deliberately put its people first, dramatically raising living standards, eliminating poverty, improving nutrition and education and health. Of course, people are the same everywhere, so an upper crust of scammers was bound to emerge, but they have been rooting out the corruption while the US welcomes it in the highest places.

        China with all of their faults, have shown far better intent overall in recent generations than US oligarchy. They have also been investing in Africa and SA instead of conspiring for hegemony with proxy wars. I would not personify them or pretend that they are an ideal, but there seems to be much the US could learn there.

        • backwardsevolution
          October 22, 2016 at 7:31 pm

          Joe B – yes, there’s good and bad in China, as there is everywhere. Kissinger went to China, then Nixon. The Chinese leader at that time (can’t remember his name) started saying something like “it is good to be rich” to the Chinese people. China were going to play ball. They were going to be the cheap factory for our goods, allow the U.S. corporations to come in (as long as they paired up with a Chinese partner chosen from the Chinese elite). Technology was transferred (technology which took decades to perfect, technology that would have taken China 30 to 40 years to master), etc. China was U.S.-made.

          Chinese elite want money and power. The Chinese elite probably care as much about the Chinese people as our elites care about us – not much. They placate us with bread and circuses, but our value to them is as consumers for their products. Consumers who pay taxes, who go into debt and pay interest to them. You’ve got to make sure your future consumers have just enough money to spend on your goods. Imagine over a billion new consumers. Imagine what that does to your bottom line. Kind of like fattening up the pigs.

          Am I hardened, or what?

          China has pushed people off farmland in order to sell property to the Chinese elite. Same as in England during the Industrial Revolution, they pushed people off land and into the cities to work in the factories. The Chinese elite are very corrupt. The leaders have reined in the elite a few times (like during the last few years), told the elite to stop flashing their expensive cars, watches, jewels as it makes the peasants angry, and angry peasants are not good for the elite’s necks. They have polluted the farmland, the water (they sell a ton of bottled water there), during winter you can barely see a few feet in front of you, their media and Internet are heavily censored.

          When China was investing in Africa, so were we. Huge, huge tracts of land were being sold by oftentimes corrupt African leaders to Goldman Sachs, China, J.P. Morgan, China…..you get the point. They were racing to beat each other to the land. Almost like another time in history when European countries carved up Africa.

          The following article spells out what China has been doing about corruption. Sure, they’re going after some, but mostly they just look the other way. This is how they keep their nobles in line. Arrest and sentence just enough to placate the masses, make them think something is being done (same as here; a few token people went to jail after the 2008 economic crash, but none of the big fish).

          “According to official reports, on one day alone, May 18th, 6m people joined demonstrations in 132 cities across the country. The party’s immediate response was to use the people’s army to crush the people by force, in Tiananmen Square. To rebuild the loyalty of those who would continue to rule in the party’s name, its leaders went on to create the conditions in which officials at all levels could loot state property. Thus, the biggest democracy movement in history was countered by the greatest opportunity for predation the world has ever seen. […]

          …he shows that this is not the unfortunate by-product of rapid economic growth but the result of strategic choices by the party. With clinical precision, Mr Pei explains how corruption operates at every level, perverting each branch of the party-state and subverting the political authority of the regime. The party cannot mitigate, let alone eradicate, “crony capitalism” because, since 1989, it has been “the very foundations of the regime’s monopoly of power…”

          http://www.economist.com/news/books-and-arts/21708644-how-chinas-elite-has-taken-control-economyand-country-have-and-hold

          Strategic choice to allow corruption. China is in great debt, which the people will be left with. The elite, as I said, are fleeing the ship, or at least have a place to run to should the peasants start revolting. And revolt they will when the various Chinese government-made bubbles burst.

          • Joe B
            October 22, 2016 at 9:42 pm

            Thanks; this is a very interesting perspective. I will read more.

          • Joe B
            October 24, 2016 at 7:43 am

            Still, I would observe that China’s mass investigations and prosecutions of corrupt officials and businessmen is a world apart from the US, where corruption is legalized. They prosecute 1000s at a time! Apparently money does not buy those judges and politicians as it does here. I can name judges here who personally embezzle millions from the state. That looks to be quite risky over there. They have chosen to permit less-regulated free enterprise in some areas, but they do not appear to me yet to have chosen corruption. Perhaps I will learn otherwise.

  21. elmerfudzie
    October 22, 2016 at 2:44 pm

    Mr Parry, I’m glad your article mentioned Hawaii. It’s the home of last resort for a surprising class of American’s, by that I mean, when State Rep. Tom Brower a so called DEMOCRAT, took up a sledgehammer and with his own hand, plowed down cardboard boxes where the homeless were living, it showed the meaninglessness of our two party political system. Traditional Democrats of the FDR persuasion, would have tarred and feathered Brower followed by full impeachment with prompt dismissal from office. However nothing of the sort occurred. Hawaii is the last state or stop for the once dazzlingly successful white shoe boys, who have lost everything to wild financial speculations and now find themselves divorced from their wives, families and bank accounts. My tone here is one of pity and hopefully- some support. This sad predicament exposes the soft underbelly of raw and unabated capitalism. Behind this broken two party political system, is a corrupt legal instrument called CORPORATION. This legal (person-hood) identity can be easily misdirected to buy off government officialdom, side step product liabilities, avoid personal, environmental, ethical, legal, responsibilities, dodge income taxes and foment world wars.The corporate identity must be either totally revamped or dismembered as a legal instrument done in a manner that addresses the corruptful examples I described here. We are days away from such a new global war-conflict and the CORPORATE ENTITY is the beast everyone must face, fight and oppose. To correct a path headed straight for oblivion requires our citizen’s of the first and second worlds to let go of their craving for every new pass-time or distraction. Some citizens travel, hoping to distract themselves from the critical issues here, some gamble, others drink themselves into oblivion on weekends, some are workaholics, sex fiends, or avid sportsmen, ANYTHING! ANYTHING!! but face the new reality of INTERNATIONAL CORPORATE FIEFDOM. Well, all you lawyers sitting on your duffs, Unite! and put your heads together, find a new instrument for international and domestic commerce, DO IT DAMMIT! If CONSORTIUMNEWS readers think I’m exaggerating about ‘ol Tom small “d” Democrat behaviors, visit the following: https://thinkprogress.org/state-rep-uses-sledgehammer-to-destroy-homeless-peoples-possessions-b27f5e2914a9#.8afpz7jpx

    • backwardsevolution
      October 22, 2016 at 2:56 pm

      elmerfudzie – David Swanson writes in “Rigged”:

      “Ultimately, an unrigging of the U.S. system might take the form of amending the U.S. Constitution to slip in words like these:

      The rights protected by the Constitution of the United States are the rights of natural persons only.

      Artificial entities, such as corporations, limited liability companies, and other entities, established by the laws of any State, the United States, or any foreign state shall have no rights under this Constitution and are subject to regulation by the People, through Federal, State, or local law. The privileges of artificial entities shall be determined by the People, through Federal, State, or local law.

      The judiciary shall not construe the spending of money to influence elections to be speech under the First Amendment.

      All elections for President and members of the United States House of Representatives and the United States Senate shall be entirely publicly financed…..”

      And he goes on.

      http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/10/20/rigged/

      • elmerfudzie
        October 23, 2016 at 7:51 pm

        IN response to backwardsevolution from elmerfudzie: Getting congress to amend is the ho, ho, ho, detail in the devil. In order to ratify the change, this action would require a two thirds vote? Congress can’t mutually agree, on either side of the aisle, what time of day it is, let alone a two thirds vote…. In response to a TRULY failed house and senate, do you actually believe that our citizenry at large can bother themselves and organize thousands of signed petitions to demand impeachment of representatives refusing the amendment? Old man Rockefeller began this twisted horror called CORPORATION in Delaware, so to undo it, each state of the union must tackle the legal details by reviewing their individual constitutional laws-perhaps there’s some wiggle room there? If not, then a state-by-state referendum to adopt a statutory law subjecting corporate entities to annual review and then re-incorporation…community by community. Our founding fathers had a policy to temporarily grant INCORPORATION but once the job was completed, example, to construct a bridge, that particular charter and related papers were immediately dissolved. This practice also applied to forbidding any standing armies, once the war(s) were over. The founders are rolling in their graves!!!!!!!

        • backwardsevolution
          October 24, 2016 at 3:01 am

          elmerfudzie – “The founders are rolling in their graves!” You bet they are. Good comments which I’ll have to think some more on. Thanks.

  22. Bill Bodden
    October 22, 2016 at 2:47 pm

    Official Washington’s neoconservative (and liberal-hawk) foreign policy establishment is rubbing its hands in anticipation of more war and more strife, including a U.S. military escalation in Syria, a take-down of Iran, and a showdown with nuclear-armed Russia

    Washington’s neocons and liberal-hawks are as out of touch with reality as were the royal elites on the march of folly that led to the First World War. Our military and its European franchise – NATO – are still bogged down in Afghanistan where they are tangling with gravediggers who will very likely add the American empire to its graveyard of empires in the not-too-distant future. Then there are Syria and Iraq and who knows what else on Israel’s to-do list? The Iranians and the Russians have shown how formidable they can be when attacked. Nothing less than nukes will defeat them.

    It may be that our military leadership will be the only hope to avoid this possible monumental catastrophe by their refusal to obey whatever mad persons occupy the Evil Office and that five-side asylum for the potentially insane on the Potomac after January 2017. The question is, “Will they have the moral courage to refuse to obey what could be the most immoral order ever?”

  23. Bill Bodden
    October 22, 2016 at 3:02 pm

    One potential leader of a peace movement would be Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, a 35-year-old military veteran who is one of the few members of Congress to offer an insightful and courageous critique of the dangers from an interventionist foreign policy. But Gabbard would be putting her promising political career at risk if she challenged a sitting Democratic president, especially early in Clinton’s White House term

    What would Ms Gabbard’s political career be like if Hillary Clinton and her hawkish friends set off the Third World War that might also be known as the First and Last Nuclear War? Perhaps she should consider the example set by Wayne Morse (D-OR) and Ernest Gruening (D-AK), the only senators who opposed the controversial Gulf of Tonkin Resolution

  24. rosemerry
    October 22, 2016 at 3:18 pm

    Have none of the “leaders” and none of the media in the USA noticed that their “humanitarian interventions” in recent decades have been a failure, that all the countries they have “helped” this century are in a lamentable state, and that their alleged desires for democracy everywhere (except in the Homeland,with bought elections, of course) include allies like Saudi Arabia?
    Never learning from experience, or attempting diplomatic methods of communication, or trying to understand other people’s points of view (eg Russia) just relegates the USA to the status of a dangerous fool.

    • backwardsevolution
      October 22, 2016 at 3:59 pm

      Oh, rosemerry, the leaders and the media notice, and they know. They know these are not “humanitarian interventions”, but they publicly call them that so that the American people don’t figure out the real reasons for them leveling countries and killing thousands of people. “Freedom” and “promoting democracy” are other words they use, but they could care less about freedom and democracy or humanity. I mean, look at the lies they are telling on a daily basis.

      These are not humanitarians who just keep screwing up. No, these are purposeful acts to take out leaders, put favorable puppets into power, steal resources from recently-couped countries, upset whole regions by causing intentional chaos in order to make other governments (Israel) feel safer (and you could add Saudi Arabian princes in there too, and others).

      Can you just imagine what would happen if they were truth: we’re going into this country in order to take out their leader. We might kill thousands of people, but, oh, well. Our arms dealers and weapons manufacturers are kept happy, along with the military-security industries, because they’re all getting filthy rich. We get a puppet leader who will sell out his countrymen, sell us cheap resources. We get another pawn on the chess board, who we will quickly put into debt so that we can hold the debt over its head. Better minds than mine have said it.

      These wars are not mistakes, but planned takeovers.

  25. backwardsevolution
    October 22, 2016 at 3:22 pm

    Donald Trump just put out his “Contract with the American Voter”:

    “What follows is my 100-day action plan to Make America Great Again. It is a contract between
    myself and the American voter – and begins with restoring honesty, accountability and change to
    Washington.

    Therefore, on the first day of my term of office, my administration will immediately pursue the
    following six measures to clean up the corruption and special interest collusion in Washington,
    DC:

    FIRST, propose a Constitutional Amendment to impose term limits on all members
    of Congress;

    SECOND, a hiring freeze on all federal employees to reduce federal workforce
    through attrition (exempting military, public safety, and public health);

    THIRD, a requirement that for every new federal regulation, two existing
    regulations must be eliminated;

    FOURTH, a 5 year-ban on White House and Congressional officials becoming
    lobbyists after they leave government service;

    FIFTH, a lifetime ban on White House officials lobbying on behalf of a foreign
    government;

    SIXTH, a complete ban on foreign lobbyists raising money for American elections.”

    Read on:

    https://assets.donaldjtrump.com/CONTRACT_FOR_THE_VOTER.pdf

  26. Bill Bodden
    October 22, 2016 at 3:24 pm

    There are three tactics that could stop this imminent march of folly. Unfortunately, they are not practical, but for something to assume the role of a new (and perhaps last) American dream, consider:

    (1) Destroy all bunkers that have been built for American elites to hide in the event of a nuclear war.

    (2) Immediately enlist all children and nephews and nieces of Washington’s foreign policy elite and those of all senators and representatives in Congress in the infantry – not in the officer ranks.

    (3) Have the United Nations or the International Criminal Court convene war crimes trials to try promoters of the Iraq War in accordance with the Nuremberg Principles – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuremberg_principles.

    • backwardsevolution
      October 22, 2016 at 3:36 pm

      Bill – I thought of typing something similar to your point (2) yesterday, but thought it was too diabolical. Glad to see a like mind. Of course their family members should be front and center. Heck, send up Chelsea and the oldest Obama child. I’ll bet we’d see some sweat and a quick change of heart.

      The first time I ever contacted my Prime Minister’s office was when Gaddafi was murdered. I was furious, not because he was such a great guy, but because he wasn’t a bad guy. He did so much for his country: free medical, dental, education, 1,500 mile pipeline built to supply fresh water for his citizens, etc. He asked for a little more of the oil money for his people, but that was a mistake, I guess. Before he was even killed, France (Sarkozy) and Cameron (U.K.) were in Libya talking with the about-to-be new government. France said, “Look, since we’ve helped you take Gaddafi out, we want 35% of all oil for our energy company, TOTAL.” Can you imagine? This is all about money, oil, power. Some man got murdered because of this, and the country lay in ruins.

      Same with Hussein. One minute you’re a U.S. puppet, the next you’re a weapons-of-mass-destruction maniac who needs to be murdered.

      I read an article (I think I posted it here somewhere) where a journalist in Lebanon was interviewing Syrians who fled Syria. He said they were not under any threat to be kind when speaking of Assad, but he couldn’t believe that every single one of them hated the terrorists and loved Assad. He said they also knew exactly what was going on, that the U.S., Saudi Arabia and others were backing ISIS in order to take Assad out. What surprised him the most was the fact that, even though he was an American and they knew this, they were very kind to him and showed no animosity.

  27. Brad Owen
    October 22, 2016 at 3:53 pm

    Thanks again, Mr. Parry, for shining a light on the hubris and stupidity of “Empire-Think” (to coin an Orwellian term). Of course I’m done with the vain hope of anything decent in the Dem Party coming out on top…just a continuation of more lies, like Lucy promising Charlie Brown she won’t jerk away the football THIS time (yeah right). And the Rep Party is destroyed from within, by their own contradictions (thank the Gods). I just finished writing another letter to the Jill Stein 2016 campaign, along with another $10 check. I expressed a thought on a Green version of Providing for the Common Defense (along with thoughts on Establishing Justice and Promoting the General Welfare, ya-know, like what the Preamble sez We The People should be doing). I suggested that all U.S. military forces should be converted into The Nat’l Guard Sea/Air/Land Forces, and all young citizens (between 18 and 25) should be required to serve a 2-year apprenticeship in the military arts & sciences, to be followed by permanent membership in The Guard as citizen soldiers until age 55, like what the Swiss do. ALSO, no U.S. soldier will see duty outside the territory of the U.S.A. unless wearing the blue helmets of the U.N. Security Council, thus giving over the entirety of our foreign policy to U.N. mandates. ALSO, all U.S. bases on foreign soil should be shut down, or turned over entirely to the U.N. Security Council to use, or dispose of, as they see fit. ALSO; the Army Cops of Engineers should get much more emphasis, and the so-called “glamorous” Special Operations Forces should be GREATLY de-emphasized. In the coming rise of ocean levels, we’ll need a HUGE helping hand from The Guard in relocating tens of millions of citizens to higher ground. THIS is common defense, Swiss style, and puts an end to aggressive Empire, and THIS is being serious about changing the status quo. Hoping for “hopey/changy” stuff from the Dems is just so much pissing into the wind.

  28. backwardsevolution
    October 22, 2016 at 4:00 pm

    Good Will Hunting says it well (the NSA clip):

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mJHvSp9AKYg

  29. Bill Bodden
    October 22, 2016 at 4:01 pm

    It also doesn’t seem to matter to these elites that many American commoners are fed up with these costly and bloody “regime change” schemes. As Hadley told the Post’s Jaffe, “Everyone has kind of given up on the Middle East. We have been at it for 15 years, and a lot of Americans think it is hopeless. … We think it is not.”

    This is similar to America’s entry into the First World War. The people didn’t want to get involved in the war, but the hawks won – as they tend to do.

  30. Abe
    October 22, 2016 at 5:04 pm

    “US strategists had planned since 2003, and possibly as early as 2001, to force Assad and his secular Arab nationalist ideology from power, and was funding the Syrian opposition, including Muslim Brotherhood-linked groups, from 2005. Accordingly, Washington had been driving toward the overthrow of the Assad government with the goal of de-Ba’athifying Syria. An Islamist-led guerilla struggle against Syria’s secular Arab nationalists would have unfolded, regardless of whether the Syrian government’s response at Daraa was excessive or not. The game was already in play, and a pretext was being sought. Daraa provided it. Thus, the idea that the arrest of two boys in Daraa for painting anti-government graffiti on a wall could provoke a major conflict is a believable as the notion that WWI was caused by nothing more than the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand.”

    The Revolutionary Distemper in Syria That Wasn’t
    By Stephen Gowans
    https://gowans.wordpress.com/2016/10/22/the-revolutionary-distemper-in-syria-that-wasnt/

  31. mrtmbrnmn
    October 22, 2016 at 5:12 pm

    Once again, Mr Parry, you have got it right!
    When the final helter-skelter piling on of the hapless disruptor Trump is accomplished and the Queen of You Owe Me is re-installed at her former White House residence (this time as Capo di Tutti Capi) the duped voting public will quickly experience a massive fit of buyer’s remorse and live to regret (if we live) that the neocons & neoliberals of Rogue Nation are back in the saddle and riding mankind. Bonnie & Clyde Clinton and their posse of the pathologically corrupt and criminally insane ARE the mushroom cloud!!

  32. Paul Schofield
    October 22, 2016 at 5:32 pm

    This is all so very sad. These people are in every way psychopaths. They are devoid of any feelings of compassion for the suffering and destruction they create in their arrogance and hubris.
    Our planet is on the verge of ecological collapse due to climate change which will lead to massive conflict and shifting populations as agricultural land becomes no longer viable.
    We need every last person to realise we are in a battle to save our very existence and we cannot afford to waste one more cent or one moment of our scientists and technologists valuable time on developing ways of killing our fellow human beings.
    The very survival of the greatest gift in the universe, consciousness, is at risk. Extinction of life on this planet has started. This is the greatest crime mankind can conceive, a crime against your God or the universe.
    We are all complicit due to our failure to act and stop this insanity.

  33. F. G. Sanford
    October 22, 2016 at 5:46 pm

    It’s the neocons’ last chance. US debt is $20 trillion. Collateralized debt and unsecured derivatives are estimated by some to exceed $42 trillion. Keep in mind, these are debts collateralized with other debts packaged as assets, and speculative investments propped up by stock buy-backs thanks to ZIRP. Who really knows how the Larry Summers mentored con-artists have cooked the books. Global debt is estimated at $4 quadrillion. That much money doesn’t actually exist. China, arguably the worlds largest trading “partner”, has reduced its import/export ratio from 40% to 20% in the last twenty years. In other words, it no longer relies heavily on foreign materials and components, a significant measure of self-sufficiency. Russia, thanks to sanctions, has been forced in the same direction. Asia builds its own cars, computers, televisions, radios and industrial equipment, all thanks to know-how and industrial infrastructure provided by American corporate CEOs seeking to maximize profits by exploiting low-wage economies. Real unemployment is 21% and, if the GDP were calculated the old fashioned way, it would be well into negative territory. Those jobs ain’t comin’ back. Raw materials aren’t being sold and inventories are high because nobody is buying, which means production is going nowhere. But through the magic of quantitative easing, stocks are up in a global stagnant economy. There is no growth and there is no recovery except for the richest 1%. The rosy economic outlook is a big lie. This bubble will burst sooner or later. The election was supposed to be between Jeb and Hillary, the duopoly’s preferred puppets. It didn’t work out that way, so the Republican hierarchy has shifted its support to the other Republican, Hillary Clinton. Inside the neocon collective brain-trust, more loose screws than a 1969 Rambler are desperately rattling. CFR, CAP, The Atlantic Council, WINEP, Center for a New American Security, Institute for the Study of War, Ford Foundation, The Jamestown Foundation, The Hudson Institute, The Rockefeller Foundation and a host of others – all well stocked with neocons and fundamentalists of every stripe – are in panic mode. If they can’t get this war, their game is over. There have been dozens of articles by respectable journalists and statisticians documenting the irrefutable reality of election rigging – Greg Palast, Bob Fitrakis, Mike Whitney, and even Pat Buchannon have opined. Election rigging is no fantasy. Progressives whined about the primary rigging against Sanders. But suddenly, Democrats claim the idea that the democratic process could be subverted by skulduggery indicates a delusional excursion into “conspiracy theory”. Well, here’s a “conspiracy theory” for ya. The only way to hide current economic reality is with an all-out war. News blackouts, internet blackouts (Have we seen a dry run?), a so-called “surveillance surge” as mentioned by Hillary in the debates, capital controls, crackdowns of every kind – all may be possibilities. And, at the heart of all this, a non-negotiable suicide pact to “secure the realm”. Not our realm, mind you, but some other realm. One that will watch us destroy ourselves and offer no gratitude. Does anybody really believe that Vladimir Putin and all his think-tankers don’t see right through this? Tell me please. If I were Vladimir Putin, and I could put a stop to this with one nuclear missile, where would I aim it? (Hint: It ain’t Washington, DC.) And, if I were Donald Trump, I’d be damned glad to lose. As far as the neocons are concerned, I’m tempted to say they are preparing to legitimate that misanthropic old canard: “They brought it on themselves.” If it happens, truer words will never be spoken. But it’s not too late. Responsible prosecutors could convene grand juries and specify charges. Congress could convene hearings. Impeachment proceedings could be initiated. Investigations could be launched. The 28 pages would be a good place to start. Or, we could simply wait for the missiles. Have you ever seen a ballistic missile re-enter the atmosphere? I have. Live, and in person. It’s truly spectacular.

    • Abe
      October 22, 2016 at 7:52 pm

      I’m sure that Adelson promised the Donald Golem he would either “lose” spectacularly or enjoy a comfortable retirement in the Oval Office (with Magic Mike firmly at the helm à la Darth Cheney) in exchange for securing the maximum number of Republican Congressional seats and chairmanship of those hearings you mentioned.

      If I were living in Tel Aviv, I’d have my eye on the atmosphere, iron dome be damned.

    • backwardsevolution
      October 22, 2016 at 7:53 pm

      F.G. Sanford – “Who really knows how the Larry Summers mentored con-artists have cooked the books” and “Inside the neocon collective brain-trust, more loose screws than a 1969 Rambler are desperately rattling.” That is some funny writing! And accurate too. Good rant!

    • Abe
      October 22, 2016 at 8:28 pm

      “look at the mindset behind Zionist donors here in America as well who are behind Israel a hundred percent like Sheldon Adelson – the casino magnate from Las Vegas. He is basically the one who is backing the Republican Party here and you see a lot of the warmongering coming out of the Republican Party here in America from candidates such as Lindsey Graham, who is in bed with Israel, and his sidekick John McCain, both neo-con mouthpieces who pander to Jewish donors like Sheldon Adelson … So it is very, very concerning like I said. What Moshe Ya’alon [former Chief of Staff of the Israel Defense Forces, who also served as Israel’s Defense Minister from 2013 until his resignation on May 20, 2016] has said is basically in accord with the Zionist neo-con clean break agenda – you can Google that as well – and that calls for going into Lebanon against Hezbollah and then into Syria. And we know going back to the Israeli Oded-Yinon neo-con plan I just talked about, strategy for Israel in the 1980s, that that is what Israel has been doing in Syria.

      “We know on record that Israel supported the FSA by striking Syrian targets for the Syrian rebels. We know that they are aiding Syrian rebels. This whole agenda in the Middle East is a wider war for Israel, which the Israel lobby in the US is getting America to back as well. And whatever you say about President Obama, maybe he is a little bit better than what neo-con John McCain would have been, but President Obama was ready to strike Syria. If it was not for the British Parliament he would have. I think he wants a nuclear deal with Iran but what we all know that the Israel lobby in America including that neoconservatives … will push to derail that Iran deal”

      – James Morris, editor of America Hijacked
      http://presstv.com/Detail/2015/05/20/412019/Israel-Iran-Moshe-Yaalon-Lindsey-Graham-John-McCain

      • backwardsevolution
        October 23, 2016 at 4:29 am

        Abe – that interview with James Morris was really good. Thanks. Whenever I used to watch the news, even back in the 80’s, I could never understand why, when anyone said anything slightly negative about Israel, Congress seemed to recoil in horror. People were being bombed off the face of the earth, and yet the press went on and on about this slight of Israel. I remember mentioning it, and wondering what was up with that. He explained it well.

  34. jaycee
    October 22, 2016 at 6:10 pm

    One poster brought up the writer David Swanson, while another discussed the legal responsibilities inherent in engaging in unsanctioned wars. This reminded me of an excellent recent piece by Swanson discussing the leaked Goldman-Sachs speeches by Clinton, whereby she openly addresses the use of the US military to enforce the dictats of the Wall Street crowd. I encourage interested folks to read this analysis:

    http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/10/17/what-hillary-clinton-privately-told-goldman-sachs/

    • evelync
      October 22, 2016 at 8:54 pm

      Thank you for this link to David Swanson’s piece on the Clinton “speak” to the bankers.
      Grotesque.
      We shouldn’t be paying for her War games.
      Where’s the Congress and the purse?
      Bought via Citizens United.

  35. BH
    October 22, 2016 at 8:28 pm

    this american perception that its own desires are ineluctable needs urgently to be corrected.Even if the group thinking that is prevailing in Washington and the elite bipartisan consensus is hoping for example in a Clinton imposing a safe zone in Syria and or the destruction of syrian military capability who told you that Russia and China and Iran are going to allow such actions to take place ?Why imagine that the other side will remain passive and it will not as many declarations from Putin downward again and again have demonstrated?in all its recent history the Usa has proved that it never attacks a perceived strong enemy just the weak one will do a la Saddam or Ghaddafi but if the elite of the USA is beyond madness then the suicide of the empire will be sealed.If somebody then thinks going nuclear then the fate of the planet will be sealed as well.

  36. exiled off mainstreet
    October 22, 2016 at 8:29 pm

    The terrible fact in this is that these militarist fools will be relying on the votes of those who up to now have been part of the more sceptical element. The only way to prevent this is to point out to them that voting for a war criminal when facts the crime are known attaches war crimes guilt to those who do so. A few polls are now even showing Trump in the lead and the modelling of others based on 2012 when minorities were more excited about a more attractive candidate must be called into question. There have also been hints of an enthusiasm gap pointed out in the background of polling articles, but usually downplayed or ignored because it does not fit the official narrative. What is obvious, indeed an 800 pound gorilla, as this article notes, is that the harpy’s team of neocons and R2P types represents a spin of the barrel for the planet. Of course, things look this bad largely because establishment “received wisdom” has become the propaganda central’s official mantra. All they talk about is Trump’s tape, not the proven cynicism and corruption highlighted by wikileaks. Meanwhile the demonization of Russia by the official sources gives off the stench of fascism and death. Nuclear holocaust on behalf of el qaeda is not only criminal but stupid.

  37. evelync
    October 22, 2016 at 9:13 pm

    Re Robert Parry’s comment:
    “One potential leader of a peace movement would be Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, a 35-year-old military veteran who is one of the few members of Congress to offer an insightful and courageous critique of the dangers from an interventionist foreign policy. But Gabbard would be putting her promising political career at risk if she challenged a sitting Democratic president, especially early in Clinton’s White House term.”

    In favor of the argument that Rep Gabbard might undertake this task, we remember
    that she quit as Vice Chair of the DNC in order to declare her support for Bernie, facing down Clinton rage and the whole Democratic establishment.
    Tulsi is one of the few hopeful lights in Congress. A brilliant, courageous woman.
    Along with former Ohio State Senator Nina Turner, NY Congressional candidate Zephyr Teachout, she gives me hope that somehow Hillary and Wall Street will face some opposition ……Elizabeth Warren looks game to hold Wall Street accountable on the home front.
    There just isn’t yet enough evidence of others with their awareness and courage in the Congress to stand up to the psychopathy of the Clinton- Wall Street – neocon – War for profit gang.

    Not to mention the complicity of the MSM spreading propaganda in service of the War profiteers.

  38. Nancy
    October 22, 2016 at 10:49 pm

    Will military veterans be silent against continued U.S. propoganda wars fought for the 0.5%?

  39. Texas Aggie
    October 23, 2016 at 12:07 am

    Leonard Cohen – I have seen the future, it is murder

  40. Realist
    October 23, 2016 at 12:26 am

    None of this has ever made any sense to me whatsoever. What drug are these warmongers on that so changes their perception of reality? As Parry states, they rant that Syria, Iran and Russia must be taken down, their governments must be overthrown and Western puppets put in their place (as if!). Yes, the Syrian army is killing people, including innocent civilians caught in the crossfire, but why? Because America and its (truly) Islamofascist allies the Sunni Gulf States and Turkey started a proxy war against the legitimate elected government there, importing, arming and paying jihadi terrorists from all over the world to overthrow Assad. Why will it be better to have the region controlled by (no means “moderate”) fanatical head-choppers? How will that reflect “American values” and help the people of Syria, including all the religious minorities loathed by the head-choppers, one iota? Does Barack Obama, Joe Biden, John McCain, Hillary Clinton and the rest of the warmongers leading our government not think beyond what they are having for dinner tonight? Do they not see the increased murder, destruction and mayhem their actions will result in? Who ever told these idiots that they have a lick of intelligence, and why were they trusted to do anything more than sweep the streets in service to the public? Kerry, Merkel, Hollande, you want to focus on “war crimes?” Try Gaza, Fallujah, Belgrade, Yemen, Nicaragua, Panama… any number of American pieces of warcraft, any number of examples of Bill’s, Dubya’s, Barack’s and Hillary’s handiwork.

    Yes, some Iranian students took some American hostages 37 years ago, but is that why we continue to hate the entire country and constantly say that it needs to be “taken down?” Iran has not attacked any other country during the interim, and the main reason it reacted with animosity against America nearly 40 years ago was because we overthrew their elected government about 25 years before that so that American corporations could plunder Iran’s oil reserves. Iran has not been expansionist even when provoked into a defensive war by Saddam, who was America’s puppet back in the 80’s. Its support of Syria in the American Proxy War is probably the first deployment of its military forces off of its own soil since the days of the ancient Persian Empire. It directs rhetoric at Zionist Israel, but not bombs. Why would it? It is not suicidal. Israel has the hundreds of nuclear weapons. Iran has none and recently signed a treaty swearing to keep it that way. Yeah, Iran has traded in conventional arms, basically to those few countries sympathetic to it. And, America does not trade arms? America supplies MOST of the world’s arms. What more does Washington want from Iran? Why is its destruction of such importance to the neocons and liberal hawks, and why do the American people believe one word spouted by those war mongers? I’m looking for the slightest bit of logical analysis based on true facts here, people, not the bombastic scenarios made of whole cloth by the fools in our American government.

    The savage animosity against Russia expressed throughout the American media with undisguised desires to obliterate that country’s very culture, though as familiar and comfortable to Americans as the Naugahyde Barcalounger in their family room is just as tasteless, ill-considered and absolutely preposterous as all the other axes Americans are taught to grind against “the other,” in fact the multitude of “others.” Maybe it’s because, except for the Native Americans, we all sprang from “the other.” We all, no matter how far back our lineage on this continent goes, were once from somewhere else, and we’ll be damned if we let those people think that THEY made the right choice in staying put. Not on your life: “we” were right and they are all wrong. No one seems to hate Russia as much as a Russian expat who defected to America (save for Saker and Dmitry Orlov). So, it’s our prerogative to exterminate them if we so choose. At the very least we have the right to give them chapter and verse on what they may or may not do, and what they may or may not think or believe. What the hell else did Russia do wrong? They’ve never attacked America ever in the history of the world. If there was atrocious oppressive behavior (as there has been in most every country, the USA included in spades–black slaves, native American genocide… ring a bell?) on their soil, it was an internal matter which is demonstrably being rectified in current times, just as Germany has labored to make amends for the Hitler years. Stalin’s deeds do not justify Killary swooping in, overthrowing Putin (and Putin is NO Hitler or Stalin) and installing some goofball American puppet (like Yeltsin) in Moscow. (Besides, that won’t happen, and a nuclear conflagration is more than likely if she persists in trying to ram such a policy through.) And, stopping just short of a military invasion by fomenting coups in neighboring states, imposing sweeping economic sanctions meant to destroy their economy and destabilize their society, establishing American military bases smack on their border and pointing nuclear-tipped missiles stationed a mere few hundred miles from Russia’s largest cities are NOT reasonable gestures that no one would mistake for an existential threat (no matter the rhetorical contortions Obama, Clinton or Breedlove use to twist reality). They are all extremely provocative acts of aggression which the cowboys in the American White House and State Department are apparently willing to take to the brink of nuclear war. Any re-actions by Russia have been defensive acts against this widespread American aggression. Any thinking person who does not habitually lie to himself throughout the day can see this.

    As I’ve said many times, I simply do not see what–other than complete and total control of every aspect of life across the entire surface of Planet Earth–does America think it is trying to gain from these hyper-aggressive foreign policies. And what difference will it make for rank and file Americans even if our insane government succeeds? How does it benefit me that Ukrainians have now been programmed to loathe all Russians by a cadre of American and NATO interlopers? To this point, I see only negatives. Our current policies have seen only the loss of jobs, erosion of tax revenues and deterioration of our infrastructure, educational system and health care delivery. Moreover, we’ve squandered lives, treasure and natural resources on maintaining this military juggernaut and its 1000 bases across the globe. Sorry, but that cost is not worth it so we can ensure that “moderate” headchoppers lead the new regime in Syria, to say nothing if Russia calls our bluff and accommodates our apparent desire for thermonuclear war because we’ve backed them into a corner. Can no one in the public eye, with the potential to become a sane new non-destructive leader, please start asking the maniacs in charge for logical answers and sane policies? Will the media NEVER give any such person a forum to start such a debate? Are 330 million Americans happy with the prospect that all their lives may suddenly end because Obama and now Hillary has some personal grudge and score to settle against Putin? You really okay with that, America?

    Sorry for all the words, but the future looks bleaker with every passing day. Not one Western leader is willing to buck the warmongers in Washington, they only follow orders and double down every time it’s their turn to bet.

    • col from oz
      October 24, 2016 at 4:07 am

      Well said, thoughtful and correct.

    • Joe B
      October 24, 2016 at 8:04 am

      Exactly; we have no democracy, but only an oligarchy engaged in propaganda operations and lunatic aggression for personal gain. This will not change without destruction of the oligarchy and its control of elections and mass media, which cannot be done without internal violence and external coercion, because those are the tools of democracy. The US is already on the dustheap of history.

  41. October 23, 2016 at 4:51 am

    A hero or two would be helpful here, such as Vasili Arkhipov and Valentin Savitsky.
    In the Cuban Missile crisis Akhipov was the one officer on board a Soviet sub who refused to go along with the order to fire a nuclear weapon at circling US ships. They needed all three top level officers to concur in order to fire and he was the one refusing. It would almost certainly have touched off a nuclear exchange.
    In the 1980’s Savitsky was the officer who held back on declaring that the US was making a first strike on the Soviet Union. Radar showed five incoming missiles, fired from the USA. He decided this was a malfunction because a real attack would have been much larger.
    Neither of these actions was known until many years later. They were true heros. It is so much easier (and weaker) to just blow things up.
    These were the Soviet officers, not US officers.

  42. Dr. Ip
    October 23, 2016 at 4:58 am

    May I direct you to the work of A. Paul Weber, especially the drawing entitled Deutsches Verhängnis [German Fate/Doom] 1931/1932 (http://www.weber-museum.de/werk/widerstand/) which one can see in the A. Paul Weber museum in Ratzeburg, Germany. Clicking on the picture will enlarge it and allow one to see exactly what Mr. Parry is talking about. Another one of the pictures, Auftakt [Prelude] 1931/1932, shows you how the music played by the media gets people “singing from the same sheet of martial music.”

    From 1931 to 1936 Weber published a magazine called “Widerstand” [Resistance] for which he prepared a number of satirical drawings, including the two mentioned above. Most of the material written about him is in German, since he has not yet been “discovered” by the Anglo-American world. But suffice it to say that he was not alone, even though he and others like him were, like the Consortium authors, voices in the wilderness.

    Later – and this is perhaps why his “discovery” has not been imminent in our Anglo-American world – after he was jailed by the Nazis, he actually did work for the other side, with some antisemitic work as well. So his soul is not spotless. But in 1971 the German government awarded him The Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany for his anti-Nazi work, thus rehabilitating him, with editorials arguing that Weber did not personally hold antisemitic views.

    I leave it to you to make a judgement based on your values. However, at any rate, the anti-Nazi and anti-war illustrations should be added to the illustrations which warn us about the “Lemming Effect” that the neocon war-hawks are creating.

  43. Peter Loeb
    October 23, 2016 at 7:51 am

    DEFINING THE INEVITABLE

    This excellent summation by Robert Parry helps those of us who
    have long opposed military intervention know where we are.

    A few remarks:

    1. It is too facile to let Barack Obama off the hook. The neocons
    who have held key positions during the Obama administration
    served at his pleasure. Which is to say with his support. It is
    pure hypocrisy to accept Obama’s eloquent excuses for his
    pursuit of hawkish positions in foreign policy. His “legacy” has been
    one of oratorical and manufactured belief in the fantasy that America
    and the West
    s not disintegrating. (See Alistair Crooke’s recent article
    in Consortium on the end of “growth”.) His legacy is been
    the expert fabricated story of American power everywhere
    in the world. His PR has also failed to come to grips with the dog
    (the US and West) being wagged by the Israeli tail, a matter of political
    cowardice. (See the UN resolution in the General Assembly
    on Palestine which the US will block in the Security Council.)

    2. The article supports the Hillary Clinton strategy of total
    submerging of almost all foreign policy disasters for most
    of which she has been a driving force while promising
    what cannot be delivered (See Alistair Crooke again).

    3. To his mention of Eugene McCarty in 1968, Parry should
    have added McCarthy’s defeat and space providing an analysis of why.

    Many thanks to Robert Parry. In conclusion. Those of us
    opposing peace are nowhere topday. We look to Consortium analysts
    and commenters to keep us informed on the deluge that now
    awaits us. These are sad and indeed tragic times as they have
    been for years under many US administrations.

    —Peter Loeb, Boston, MA, USA

  44. October 23, 2016 at 8:08 am

    The people who run the US government are so out of touch with reality it isn’t even funny. The Legislative, the Executive, the Judicial and the US State Department and all of their minions are setting us up for a great fall. https://waitforthedownfall.wordpress.com

  45. R. Michael
    October 23, 2016 at 12:37 pm

    Mr. Parry,

    I think your article has ignored or skimmed over some crucial points. The United States (even with help from NATO partners) CANNOT prevail in Syria. The reason is that they will not be able to establish a no-fly zone there. Why not? Because Russia has anti-aircraft missiles, anti-ship missiles, anti-missile missiles and cruise missiles (for land and sea targets) in abundance in the area – and will have even more assets when the aircraft carrier and flotilla arrive at Tartus. Will the U.S. and NATO, through sheer numbers, overpower those defenses? Possibly, but only after a large number of ‘allied’ planes are downed – and possibly a ship or two is sunk. But even then the Syrians and Russians will not back down. So, then what? World War III OR a terrifying, shrieking public reaction in the West against the continuance of the war and, possibly, a bloody showdown in the Oval Office which de-claws the hawk.

    It must be remembered that the Russian people are almost totally behind President Putin, and, unlike the sleepwalking people of the West, they are mentally prepared and resolved to war if that be necessary. So, as for removing President Putin, the situation will never get that far. We will all be cooked by that time.

  46. Abe
    October 23, 2016 at 1:40 pm

    Bellingcat’s latest “open source” propaganda scam attempts to ‘splain why the Al-Nusra Front (now Jabhat Fateh al-Sham) and Ahrar ash-Sham terrorist groups aren’t allowing civilians and fighters to exit east Aleppo via the humanitarian corridors set up during the October 20 unilateral truce by the Syrian government and the Russian Federation.

    https://www.bellingcat.com/news/2016/10/22/exit-corridor-shelling-west-aleppo-open-source-analysis/

    Eliot Higgins’ credibility is near zero so the propaganda effort gets farmed out to “Bellingcat contibutors” – in this instance, two fake “citizen investigative journalists” from the War Studies Department of King’s College London (Christiaan Triebert and Nick Waters, a former British Army officer) and a Syrian anti-government propagandist / fake human rights “fact checker” (Hady Al-Khatib, aka Hadi Al-Khatib).

    • jaycee
      October 23, 2016 at 4:02 pm

      Part of Higgins presentation links to YouTube videos which are said to show “civilians protesting against the ‘humanitarian pause'”, as Higgins tries to determine why people in eastern Aleppo are not taking advantage of the exits provided to them. The open-source super-sleuth appears to have missed part of the reason, namely that these are not large demonstrations (the largest of the two features a hundred or so people) and they occur on an otherwise largely empty street. Maybe people aren’t leaving because there aren’t that many people there at all. Where is any evidence of 250,000 allegedly trapped civilians, or did these demonstrators purposely pick out a deserted area to stage their event for the cameras? I don’t think there is anything close to the alleged number of civilians inside eastern Aleppo, or perhaps Bellingcat could geo-locate them.

  47. October 23, 2016 at 3:59 pm

    PARRY – UK ambassador Craig Murray confirmed the Russians had nothing to do with the DNC leak. That leaves MURDERED DNC staffer Seth Rich, whom Wikileaks put out a $20k reward for info on. Investigate this.

    http://politicalfilm.wordpress.com/2016/10/22/all-clintonobamas-russian-hacking-claims-are-lies/

  48. super
    October 23, 2016 at 7:51 pm

    YOU ARE ACTUALLT F-ING STUPID.

    BELIEVING THE POLLS = STUPID

    HILLARY IS NOT WINNING ANYTHIND, STUPID.

    SHE IS CHEATING YOU AGAIN AND AGAIN, STUPID.

    • Rikhard Ravindra Tanskanen
      October 24, 2016 at 3:59 pm

      Troll somewhere else.

  49. October 24, 2016 at 9:23 am

    One of the problems with the Democratic primaries was the lack of media cover for Tulsi Gabbard when she resigned from her post as vice-chair of the Democratic National Committee on February 28th to endorse the candidacy of Bernie Sanders. With the exception of CNN anchor man Wolf Blitzer, the corporate media ignored her completely. Most of the alternative media seemed to be unaware of her existence.

    At the time I strongly suspected the DNC had given Gabbard the job of vice-chair to muzzle her from talking on Syria. Seen in the light of the resignation of DNC chair, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, in July my suspicions were well-founded. Now there is little doubt Clinton’s election to presidential candiate was engineered in the most cynical, and probably illegal, fashion possible. As I wrote in an article at the time:

    “Judging by the rousing reception Gabbard received as she introduced Bernie Sanders at the Michigan primary, the Clinton clan probably slapped each other on the back for managing to keep her away from the microphones for as long as they did.”

    It is a terrible shame Bernie Sanders and the alternative media didn’t comprehend what was going on much earlier. My article can be accessed here:

    https://bryanhemming.wordpress.com/2016/03/12/sanders-campaign-gets-sparks-and-sparkle/

  50. October 24, 2016 at 12:05 pm

    I’m beginning to understand how those who saw the coming train wreck rapidly approaching must have felt back in 1914. The difference, of course, is that, unlike the weapons available a century ago, those available today – which will certainly be used in the event of a major conflict between, e g, the US and Russia and/or China – did not risk extinguishing all human life on this planet….

    Henri

  51. J'hon Doe II
    October 24, 2016 at 12:10 pm

    Kiza — “it is quite obvious that the problem is the same in all Western countries…”

    The said “problem” is the Centuries Long reach of rabid European Colonialism / World Dominance.

    The words, “The thief comes not but to steal, kill and destroy” — were Established legitimately by Columbus in 1492 when he landed on the New World island of ‘Hispaniola’ and quickly slaughtered some 12 million Taíno Amerindians natives and enslaved the survivors.

    That pattern continues in this, the twenty first century — killing and destroying in the name of “National Interest.” Whether SE Asia, Africa, the Middle East, or right here today in North Dakota,USA, the rule of Capital takes precedence over Human Rights.

  52. Ernest Martinson
    October 31, 2016 at 8:02 am

    Clinton is charging down the homestretch and could soon win the crown of Commander in Chief. Will the regime changes she supported such as Iraq in 2003 and Libya in 2011 stay her hand in Syria, Iran, and Russia? Not likely. The Commander in Chief could count coup on both Russia and Republican Ronald Reagan if she wins Cold War II with a real shootout and regime change.
    As in the Army commercial, Clinton could be all she could be and leave a legacy to trump progressives Woodrow Wilson in World War I and Franklin D. Roosevelt in World War II.

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