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Is a Russian Troll Farm Destroying US Democracy?

by Oui Sat Feb 17th, 2018 at 07:30:03 AM EST

Craziness! A Russian troll farm destroying American democracy? The Americans have been doing an excellent job themselves over the last few decades. The crumbling Empire of Pax Americana. Navel staring by US bloggers has led to stalemate and depression. America has so much to give, it's Washington DC that's not functioning as it should in accordance with the U.S. Constitution and the Declaration of Independence.

Meet Yevgeny Prigozhin, the Russian Oligarch Indicted in U.S. Election Interference | NY Times |

Putting blame on outside forces will bring another great war so much closer. Thinking of the Doomsday Clock!

American democracy is doomed | Vox - Oct. 8, 2015 |

But voiced in another register, my outlandish thesis is actually the conventional wisdom in the United States. Back when George W. Bush was president and I [Matthew Iglesias] was working at a liberal magazine, there was a very serious discussion in an editorial meeting about the fact that the United States was now exhibiting 11 of the 13 telltale signs of a fascist dictatorship.

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Dutch Fake News, Warmongering, Anti-Russia Propaganda

by Oui Wed Feb 14th, 2018 at 09:28:34 PM EST

What the media in Holland and the political parties refuse to mention. The lies about Russia were placed in the context of the prospects of war initiated by Putin's Russia and the risk of maintaining unity in the European Union. Halbe Zijlstra spoke at the VVD party congress and positioned his party as anti-Russian by an ugly piece of WARMONGERING. Here is the translation from Dutch - VIDEO.

Speaker Halbe Zijlstra and his lies about a meeting with Vladimir Putin -  VVD Congress in 2016

Halbe Zijlstra started his opening words in the Frisian language, his birthplace ...

0:18
Ladies and gentlemen it's good to be in again
00:21
Friesland on my birthplace
00:23
the high too long and I see as always
00:27
at a VVD Congress a lot of
00:29
cheerfulness and optimism
00:31
I am also an optimist myself

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The World According to Dutch FM Halbe Zijlstra

by Oui Mon Feb 12th, 2018 at 12:44:24 PM EST

Dutch PM Mark Rutte has been on the roll with accusations of Russian disinformation about the MH-17 crash, election meddling and fake news through RT. It took awhile to form a new cabinet after last year's general election, his party nominated its chairman for the task of Foreign Minister. Someone with no experience in diplomacy and foreign affairs. Except of course his meeting with Russia's president Putin in his dacha. Well more or less ...

Dutch Parliament to Question Zijlstra's Credibility | De Volkskrant |

Dutch parliament wants clarification of Zijlstra about Putin's invented meeting. Rutte: 'He is still credible'

Both coalition and opposition parties want clarification from Minister Halbe Zijlstra of Foreign Affairs about his fabricated contacts with Russia. D66, CDA and ChristenUnie want a letter with an explanation to the House of Representatives. Several opposition parties want to quickly debate with Zijlstra, who today in de Volkskrant confesses that since 2014 he has told a fake story about a meeting with the Russian president Vladimir Putin.

    Zijlstra lied about talking to Putin: 'I pushed it away because it got the wrong charge'

    "Was it wise to protect the source in the way that I did it? No, that was unwise. But the information is correct."

    No, he has never sat in one room with Putin, as he has always claimed, Halbe Zijlstra now acknowledges. He would have heard his words from a source he wants to protect. "And the content is just true."

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Brexit Proxy War

by Oui Mon Feb 12th, 2018 at 10:06:11 AM EST

The parallels were clear from the outset, the players behind the scene were covert ...

  •  Pro-Brexit the conservatives/alt-right/Republicans/social-media influence via Cambridge Analytica
  •  Pro-EU Remain camp the neo-liberals/new Labor/Democrats/OSF Soros via Best for Britain

The US Presidential election, just a big surprise win for Donald Trump, supported by ...

  •  UK conservatives/alt-right/Tea Party Republicans/social-media influence via Cambridge Analytica

George Soros raises donation to anti-Brexit Best for Britain group | The Guardian |
George Soros defends £400,000 donation to pro-EU campaign | The Telegraph |

    "To make matters worse, the divorce process will preoccupy both Britain and Europe for years ahead, when they should be uniting to resist external enemies like Putin's Russia and resolve the internal contradictions that made some people regard the EU as their enemy."

Soros as Clinton backer lost on both fronts ...

NATO and Soros Crossed Russia's Red Line in Europe

My earlier diary on topic ...

Brexit: 'Putin Did It'
After Brexit: Transatlantic Opportunity for Europe's Neutrality

And of course Tony Blair getting funded to Remain! Whatever, so long the money is good.

Trump Won't Let Go of Syria - Kills Scores of SAA

by Oui Thu Feb 8th, 2018 at 08:02:52 AM EST

Keeping Daesh safe in enclave near Deir Ezzor, east of the Euphrates ...

    "The Coalition remains committed to focusing on the defeat-Daesh [ISIS] mission in the Middle Euphrates River Valley and asserts its non-negotiable right to act in self-defense."
    CENTCOM said in its official statement.

Breaking: US-led Coalition Conducts Strikes Against Syrian Army In Deir Ezzor

Killing up to one hundred soldiers of the SAA.

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NATO: Russia Stationing Ballistic Missiles On Our Borders!

by Oui Wed Feb 7th, 2018 at 09:01:12 AM EST

Oh horror! Just 10 years ago before the Obama's reset of relations with Russia ... a short historical review.

Europe Uneasy Over Russian Plans to Deploy Missiles | DW - Nov. 2008 |

Plans by Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev to deploy missiles just a stone's throw from EU borders has caused concern in western Europe. Politicians are urging Russia and the US to enter into a constructive dialog.

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier has criticized Russia's plans to deploy missiles in Kaliningrad. He told German television it was "the wrong signal at the wrong time."

Steinmeier called on Russia to enter into dialogue with the United States on the issue. He said he hoped Moscow would recognize the election of Barack Obama as an opportunity for a new beginning. At the same time, he warned of a new spiral of rearmament in Europe.

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Grin and Bear It - Just A Symptom

by Oui Sun Feb 4th, 2018 at 09:14:17 AM EST

No surprise here, an excellent analysis ...

'Trump's presidency is a symptom of our time'

12 October 2017 - 09:10

Twitter rants, alternative facts, fake news: president Donald J. Trump is truly something new. But according to culture scientist Ico Maly, the ideology that drives the Trump administration is not new, not exclusively American, and not going away. Is the New Right the new normal?

The election of Donald Trump as president of the United States has shocked the world. Nobody saw it coming. Not the media, not the pollsters, not the political analysts, and not the Tilburg University students following the New Media and Politics class taught by Belgian culture scientist Ico Maly. "In the months leading up to the presidential election, I told my students that there was a real chance Trump would win the White House. They laughed and said there was no way that would happen", Maly says.

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G W F and McCarthyism In A Digital Age - Part 2

by Oui Thu Feb 1st, 2018 at 07:43:44 PM EST

INTRODUCTION

A sad period in US politics when Hamilton Federalists have become allies of the Clinton Democratic party ... FDR turning in his grave!

Purely coincidental, Martin Longman covered this topic in a fp story. An opposite view ...

Sessions Talks to Investigation He's Trying to Kill

    You can choose how much you want to trust the Hamilton 68 dashboard, considering people like Michael Chertoff and William Kristol sit on their board, but among the suspected Russian troll accounts they're monitoring the FBI has the most twitter mentions (1161, as of this writing) in the last forty-eight hours. There's now a naked confluence of effort coming from congressional Republicans, the White House and Russian social media troll and bot accounts.

The misinformation from this group is now being advocated on progressive blogs to further anti-Russian hysteria and create that new adversary all of us should fear. About the influence of Russian bots demonstrated by Hamilton68 ...

Devin Nunes is a Dunce

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Spy Memo and Political Double Talk [Update]

by Oui Thu Feb 1st, 2018 at 10:06:37 AM EST

[Update-1] GOP Memo has just been declassified by president Trump

Will follow-up soon - see also comments below ...

An explosive event, not just the contents of the secret GOP memo ...

FBI slams secret Nunes memo alleging Feds spied on Team Trump for political reasons | The Register |

The FBI has slammed a still-secret memo that claims the bureau was politically motivated when it requested a wiretap on a key advisor of Donald Trump during his presidential campaign.

In a statement released Wednesday, the law enforcement agency said it was "provided a limited opportunity to review this memo the day before the committee voted to release it" - referring to a decision by the House Intelligence Committee to release the four-page memo to congressfolk last week.

The FBI statement , emailed to journalists, continued: "As expressed during our initial review, we have grave concerns about material omissions of fact that fundamentally impact the memo's accuracy."

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Counterinsurgency Cyberwarfare NATO vs. Russia - Part 3

by Oui Tue Jan 30th, 2018 at 10:44:20 PM EST

Made this a stand-alone diary to keep focus on topic ...

Previous diary - G W F and McCarthyism In A Digital Age - Part 1.

Part 2 is almost ready and will be posted shortly.

Russian Actions and Methods against the United States and NATO

Maj. Collins Devon Cockrell, U.S. Army
Article published on: 22 September 2017

Russia has worked to upend the post-Cold War European order through an aggressive campaign of information warfare in recent years--so much so that the 2017 European Command Posture Statement identifies Russia as the primary threat, stating that "Russia seeks to undermine this international system and discredit those in the West who have created it." In January 2017, retired Gen. James Mattis, then the nominee for U.S. secretary of defense, stated that Russia was the number one threat to the United States and was engaging in a continuing effort to "break the North Atlantic alliance."

President Vladimir Putin's speech at Munich in 2007 [video] declared that Russia would execute a foreign policy that no longer recognized a U.S.-led, unipolar system.

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DNC Server Intrusion and Unswered Questions [Update]

by Oui Fri Jan 26th, 2018 at 07:07:59 PM EST

Off the Cuff - Off the Mark :: Posted on twitter by Emptywheel ...

The geographical location of The Netherlands on a crucial Internet node and has forced the Dutch to specialize on cyber security by willing to go on the offense. For many years I have posted diaries and comments to illustrate this fact. The Dutch for decades have been "proud" followers of the AngloSaxon nations of Canada, USA and Great Britain on gathering intelligence. The Dutch are a key player in the Nine Eyes. Amsterdam Schiphol airport hosts a Mossad local branch according to Rafi Eitan in an interview.

Recently the AIVD head Rob Bertholee was interviewed on a TV program called College Tour and revealed the Dutch will not be sharing all intelligence with NSA / FBI under leadership of Trump in the White House ...?? The AIVD will be selective. Where and from which agency have I heard that warning before?

There are still too many open questions left unanswered as:  "Why didn't the FBI do an extensive search of the compromised DNC servers but left a troublesome CrowdStrike with links to the Ukraine and the Atlantic Council make up the report on the "hack." Most likely was the primary intrusion made by Guccifer and others followed. Another pressing question is why the Obama administration and the FBI failed in securing the DNC servers, knowing about Cozy Bear and Fancy Bear from the summer (June?) of 2014. In July the MH-17 crash took place near Donetsk in Eastern Ukraine after the European authorities were warned of the potential threat of Buk missiles ealier in the same month. Why is the intelligence community sitting on such a "threat" to democracy itself by remaining silent and not act adequately for months.

See yesterday's diary @BooMan ...

Dutch Hackers Infiltrated Kremlin's Cozy Bear in 2014

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G W F and McCarthyism In A Digital Age - Part 1

by Oui Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 12:41:47 PM EST

Amazing how widespread the anti-Russia rhetoric has become since 2008, the year of the second Orange Revolution in the Ukraine and the Georgia War with Russia started by Saakashvili. It was already clear then that the Republican right-wing were up to their elbows with recognizable dirty tricks in both affairs.

During the Nixon years, the GOP (Grand Ole Party) were in the big leagues with dirty tricks. It started off with the intrigues of a young Kissinger to derail the Paris peace effort between the Johnson administration and a delegation of North Vietnamese. The effort by the GOP was a shock therapy to continue the Vietnam War and mass destruction and loss of life for another six years. Of course somewhere during that period Henry Kissinger was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize (1973).

"Tricky" Dick Nixon became synonomous with the Watergate burglary and obstruction of justice for firing Archibald Cox, the special prosecutor.

    The Saturday Night Massacre began when Nixon gave the order to fire Watergate Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox, a desperate effort to prevent him from hearing tape-recorded evidence that proved the White House's involvement in a conspiracy to obstruct the investigation of a break-in at Democratic National Committee headquarters. Nixon's misuse of executive power backfired, immediately costing him two highly respected members of his administration: Attorney General Elliot Richardson and his deputy William Ruckelshaus, who both resigned rather than follow Nixon's directive. Third in command at the Justice Department was Solicitor General Robert Bork, who agreed to do the dirty deed and fired Cox.

Every 100 years it seems history repeats itself leading up to??

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Khodorkovsky - The Interpreter - Henry Jackson Society (UK)

by Oui Tue Jan 23rd, 2018 at 09:41:40 PM EST

A warning word by Colman over 12 years ago:

Neocons sighted on the Thames

As promised earlier today, my follow-up diary ... some links added in article are mine!

Neo-McCarthyism and the US Media | The Nation - June 2015 |

Large parts of eastern Ukraine lie in ruins, and relations between the United States and Russia have perhaps reached their most dangerous point since the Cuban missile crisis of 1962.

And yet a special report published last fall by the online magazine The Interpreter would have us believe that Russian "disinformation" ranks among the gravest threats to the West. The report, titled "The Menace of Unreality: How the Kremlin Weaponizes Information, Culture and Money," is a joint project of the Interpreter and the Institute for Modern Russia (IMR), a Manhattan-based think tank funded by the exiled Russian oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky.

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Intrusion Soviet Space and CW Arms Race

by Oui Sun Jan 21st, 2018 at 01:33:43 PM EST

German domestic television still spends much of its broadcast time on WWII documentaries produced in the US. Today was about the development of ICBMs, missile and satellite systems. Interesting was the part about Lockheed's U-2 development and the SR-71 Blackbird. Both developed by F-104 designer Kelly Johnson.

The very first flights of the U-2 spy plane gave most secrets of the Soviet military power ... mostly bluster and propaganda. The number of boasted missiles and bombers was greatly overstated. Krushchev was quite pissed by these intrusions during the second term of president Eisenhower. It didn't take too long to develop military methods to intercept and take the U-2 spy plane down on May 1, 1960. A great success and boost for Soviet Communist propaganda across the globe.

In the same year the Eisenhower administration was confronted with the Hungarian uprising and bloodshed, and the Franco-British-Israeli pact and the Suez Crisis. [A great read LSE thesis of 478 pages - Oui]

The excerpts below are taken from articles in the CIA Library and National Security Archives.

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All Out Class Warfare, No Compromise

by Oui Fri Jan 19th, 2018 at 08:51:47 AM EST

There are many parallels between the UK vote for Brexit and the rise and win of Trump in America. The wrong answer is to simply blame Russia's Putin or the "global" right-wing extremists [alt-right] gaining a voice through populist leaders in rising parties. In the UK the vote split along geographic lines of inequality due to decades of austerity for the underclass in British society. A breeding ground for the British people to be gullible for political propaganda of UKIP and its leader Farage: blame the immigrant policy of the EU and especially the Polish migrants.

The scientific input by Robert Mercer's Cambridge Analytica performed in both the UK referendum and US presidential election is mostly disregarded.

As the Democats and its pundits in America still put the blame on Russia and its intrigues for HRC's loss, a lot of attention is diverted from a full year of politics ...

World: Confidence In America Drops Off A Cliff

I just read two articles about Carillion with quite opposing views, word choice and analysis ...

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Carillion's Insolvency Adds to Britain's Economic Brexit Woes

by Oui Wed Jan 17th, 2018 at 10:48:18 PM EST

I will have more to say about Carillion's collapse in building and maintenace UK Government infrastructure of schools, hospitals and transport.

    The private finance initiative (PFI) is one of the most controversial domestic issues of Labour's second term. It has exposed deep divisions between ministers and Labour activists; it prompted a rare and embarrassing defeat for the party's leadership at the Labour party conference in 2002; and threatens to finally sever the traditional ties between the party and some of its trade union paymasters.

    There are also signs that while the public may be enjoying the new schools, hospitals and roads provided under PFI, the method itself is increasingly unpopular.

Steve Bell on Carillion's continued troubles - cartoon

PMQs verdict: Corbyn taunts May over Carillion | The Guardian |

The collapse of Carillion, the construction company which was one of the biggest contractors to the British government, provided Jeremy Corbyn with an open goal at this week's prime minister's questions. The Labour leader began by asking why the government had awarded more than £2bn of contracts to Carillion, even after the company had issued three profit warnings and its share price was in freefall.

May replied that if the government pulled out of contracts whenever a profit warning was issued, it would lead to companies failing and jobs being lost. Corbyn retorted that the government had continued to hand the company public contracts, either to keep it afloat or because they were "deeply negligent of the crisis coming down the line".

...
While Carillion went into liquidation with debts of £1.29bn, Corbyn said, they were paying extravagant share dividends and bonuses, and the chief executive will be renumerated for another 10 months. "One rule for the super-rich, another for everybody else." Can May assure the House that no more money will go to directors, or on bonuses?

May said workers would continue to be paid and that the official receiver was doing his job; where bonus payments were unlawful, they could be recovered. "We were a customer of Carillion, not the manager and that's a very important difference."

PMQ's Memorable lines

    "As the ruins of Carillion lie around her, will the prime minister act to end this costly racket of the relationship between government and some of these companies?

    Corbyn links the failure of Carillion to other failures of public-private partnerships

   "The vast majority of people are employed by the private sector, but [the shadow chancellor] John McDonnell calls business the real enemy. The Labour party will always put politics before people.

    May's final retort  

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Challenging Russia with Swarming Suicide Drones in Syria

by Oui Mon Jan 15th, 2018 at 10:00:06 AM EST

Challenging Russia with the drone swarming attack in Syria, any state actor would pay a price. In Idlib province, the rebels are supported by Turkey, Gulf States and Israel. I do not think the U.S. or western allies of NATO would be involved in the logistic backing of such an attack. There are enough states with the capability of course, but there needs to be a political motivation.

Do we need a reminder the proxy wars involving jihadist rebels are funded and supporte by the above mentioned states? The same nations have strong military backing from the United States in aggression against Iran. See also the alliance to fight the civil war in Yemen with all the atrocities and war crimes. Next to Saudi Arabia with young Crown Prince Salman, a new darling of the West, an important state actor is the Emirates (UAE) with strong military support from the United States .... and home base of XE or Academia or Blackwater of Erik Prince. These US mercenaries have swarmed its presence out over the globe to any hotspot of warfare, Afghanistan and Ukraine included.

 « click for more info
Israel's Aeronautics [under criminal investigation]  Orbiter 1K drone, also known as a 'suicide drone'

In Syria, Russia and Israel are in a political and military stand-off. Through its advanced technological drone warfare, Israel has an alliance with former Soviet bloc states like Azerbaijan, Georgia and Ukraine.

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How Xenophobia and Targeted Funding Sank Democrats

by Oui Sat Jan 13th, 2018 at 08:40:33 AM EST

Hate spreading outward from Trump's White House. The new nominations mirror the conservative beliefs in denial: climate change, fake news items, plain lies mixed with fundamental "Christian" fallacies on inequality and wealth (see also Mitt Romney in 2012).

Dutch Reporters Stun Trump's Ambassador By Pressing Him to Admit He Lied About "No-Go Zones"| The Intercept |

... saga goes on ...

After Hoekstra had presented his credentials to the Dutch king in the Hague on Wednesday, the former U.S. representative told reporters that he would be "moving on" from the controversy over his remarks.

But the reporters failed to play along, with one quickly asking, "Will you be visiting our 'no-go areas?'"

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Not In My Backyard

by Oui Fri Jan 12th, 2018 at 10:49:30 AM EST

Follow-up diary of my previous ...

Envoy Hoekstra Acts Just Like His Boss Trump

Participated in the public debate when mayor Wim Deetman (Labor Party) tried to convince us elderly the new U.S. Embassy should be build in a park called Clingendael. A stone's throw from where I lived, the local people would have none of it and launched a loud protest against the mayor. Speaker after speaker voiced their opposition with well placed arguments to the historical neighborhood. The criticism really got under the mayors' skin and he quickly got very pissed, threatened to shut down the debate bij leaving the public meeting. That had the opposite effect on us elders of course!

During the German occupation 1940-1945, The Hague as most large cities, had suffered greatly from fascist administration. Seyss-Inquart took possession of the large villa in Park Clingendael. In many places, the German SS tortured their political prisoners and many were executed in the dunes of Waalsdorpervlakte where every year a remembrance ceremony is held and televised in moments of silence.

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Unbelievable ... Jaap De Hoop Scheffer

by Oui Sun Jan 7th, 2018 at 09:57:14 PM EST

"The West should respect the red lines of Russia."

Yep, just recently I met the former NATO secretary general while buying a book as Xmas present for a friend. JDHS is a former acquaintance long before he became Dutch foreign minister of the Iraq War fame.

Ever since I have seen the SG become more entangled in the web of right-wing intrigues of an aggressive NATO policy of the West. Just very recently a so-called independent policy group advised the Rutte cabinet on Dutch foreign policy issues. I was saddened by its neoconservative attitude. I was even more surprised to find JDHS as chair for the foreign policy forum, hardly an independent thinker after all those years of supporting military AngloSaxon policy for the West.

Here are a few snippets from his interview ...

'NATO should not have committed to membership of Ukraine and Georgia'

NATO has driven Vladimir Putin into a corner, making him more radical. These are not the words of Russia, but those of NATO's former Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer.

According to Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, the West must respect the Russian red line. The speed of NATO enlargement has contributed to Putin's aggressive stance in the former Soviet Union.

NATO should not have committed to Ukraine and Georgia in 2008, the former NATO executive said. He calls it understandable that Putin has opposed it. "He said to me, after the communiqué came true: mister secretary-general, this will not be. This is not going to happen!"

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News and Views

 19 - 26 February 2018

by Bjinse - Feb 20, 30 comments

Your take on this week's news

 12 - 18 February 2018

by Bjinse - Feb 12, 97 comments

Your take on this week's news

 Open Thread 19 - 26 Feb

by Bjinse - Feb 20, 2 comments

Threading is the dizziness of freedom

 Open Thread 5 - 18 Feb

by Bjinse - Feb 6, 16 comments

The purpose of life is to live it, to thread to the utmost

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