Archive for the ‘foreign policy’ Category

While this list is not exhaustive it does purport to show the entanglements of the Australian military in the US military. This is only to be expected after 50 years of the Australian-US military alignment. A base of the US military can be for year round occupation or for occupation of some weeks per year. The activities of the Australian military in collecting intelligence for the US can make a base which is wholly paid for and staffed by Australians a de facto US base.

A. Alice Springs

Pine Gap is really about three facilities employing 750 to 1,000 US and Australian personnel

1. a) the Singint collecting
2. b) the DSP and now star wars bases
3. c) the photographic section
4. d) the seismic station in Alice Springs itself
5. e) the town facility -see the web site. It is huge!

B. North West Cape

This base is largely in mothballs but can activated by the US at any time it deems necessary.
5. a) the communication towers
6. b) the Solar observatory run by the US airforce

C. Seismic Stations

7.Mundaring WA
8. Hobart TAS
9. Sydney NSW
10. Charters Towers Qld
11 Daly Waters NT
12. Tennant Creek

D. Weather

13. Mildura
14. There is another one near Wagga Wagga but cannot confirm.

D. Since the DSD is part of the UK/USA agreements – all these bases are part of the US system of Echelon

15. Watsonia -Melbourne -Vic
16. Geraldton -WA
17. Shoal Bay NT
18. DSD HQ Canberra

E. RAAF bases hosting outposts of the Military Airlift Command (MAC) of the US airforce are:

19. Richmond NSW
20 Learmouth WA
21 Pearce WA
22 Salisbury SA

F. Under agreements signed long ago – the Royal Australian Airforce Bases (RAAF) are to be made available to the US when required

23 RAAF Darwin
24 Williamtown NSW
25. Townsville
26. others in the north around Kimberley and Cape York

G. Maritime signals and electronic war outlets

27. Cabarlah Qld
28. Hariman ACT may have moved to Wagga NSW.
G. Australian Navy bases used frequently
29. Stirling WA
30. Sydney and Jervis Bay

H. The training the facilities frequently used by the US

31. Delamere NT bombing training range
32. Shoalwater Bay Qld – jungle training

I. The US change the nature of NASA from the civilian to the military some time ago (10 years ago)

33. Tidbinbulla ACT is a US military base – part of the US Space Command of the US airforce.

J. GPS system has the

34. Omega Station at Dariman Vic

By the way the US wanting more bases in Australia was dated 21/6/01 SMH

I do not think that the list above is exhaustive and I argue that Australian bases which are used frequently and often by the US are then de facto US bases. There is a criss crossing of agreements about the use of Australian military facilities for US purposes. The use of these bases may only be for short periods during the year but the ready provision of them for the use of the US elevates them to US bases.

All Australian military and some civilian airports and seaports are to be put at the disposal of the US military should the need arise. There agreements signed and treaties entered into to facilitate this process.


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Even facing what under any circumstances is a perfect storm; President Putin delivered an extremely measured performance at his annual press conference and Q&A marathon.


The perfect storm evolves in two fronts; an overt economic war – as in siege by sanctions – and a concerted, covert, shadow attack to the heart of the Russian economy. Washington’s endgame is clear: impoverish and defang the adversary and force him to meekly bow to the Empire of Chaos’s’ whims. And bragging about it all the way to “victory.”

The problem is Moscow happens to have impeccably deciphered the game – even before Putin, at the Valdai Club in October, pinned down the Obama doctrine as “our Western partners” working as practitioners of the “theory of controlled chaos.”

So Putin neatly understood this week’s monster controlled chaos attack. The Empire has massive money power; a great deal of influence over the world’s GDP at $85 trillion, and the banking power behind that. So nothing easier than using that power through the private banking systems that actually controls central banks to create a run on the ruble. Think about the ‘Empire of Chaos’ dreaming of driving the ruble down by 99% or so – thus wrecking the Russian economy. What better way to impose imperial discipline on Russia?

The “nuclear” option

Russia sells oil in US dollars to the West. Lukoil, for instance, would have a deposit in US dollars in an American bank for the oil they sell. If Lukoil has to pay wages in rubles in Russia, then they will have to sell the US dollar deposits and buy in Russia a ruble deposit for their bank account. This in effect supports the ruble. The question is whether Lukoil, Rosneft and Gazprom are hoarding US dollars overseas – and holding back. The answer is no. And the same applies to other Russian businesses.

Russia is not “losing their savings”, as Western corporate media gloats. Russia can always require foreign companies to relocate to Russia. Apple, for instance, may open a manufacturing plant in Russia. The recent Russia-China deals include the Chinese building factories in Russia. With a depreciated ruble, Russia is able to force manufacturing that might have been located in the EU to be located in Russia; otherwise these companies lose the market. Putin somewhat admitted that Russia should have been demanding this much earlier. The – positive – process is now inevitable.

And then there’s a “nuclear” option – which Putin didn’t even have to mention. If Russia decides to impose capital controls and/or imposes a “holiday” on repayment of larger debt tranches coming due in early 2015, the European financial system will be bombed – Shock and Awe-style; after all, much of the Russian bank and corporate funding was underwritten in Europe.

Exposure to Russia per se is not the issue; what matters is the linkage to European banks. As an American investment banker told me, Lehman Brothers, for instance, brought down Europe just as much as New York City – based on inter-linkages. And yet Lehman was based in New York. It’s the domino effect that counts.

Were Russia to deploy this “nuclear” financial option, the Western financial system would not be able to absorb a shock of default. And that would demonstrate – once and for all – that Wall Street speculators have built a ‘House of Cards’ so fragile and corrupt that the first real storm turns it to dust.

It’s just a shot away

And what if Russia defaults – creating a holy mess out of the country’s $600 billion debt? This scenario reads as the Masters of the Universe telling Janet Yellen and Mario Draghi to create credits in the banking systems to prevent “undue damage” – as in 2008.

But then Russia decides to cut off natural gas and oil from the West (while keeping the flow to the East). Russian intel may wreak non-stop havoc in pumping stations from the Maghreb to the Middle East. Russia may block all the oil and natural gas pumped in the Central Asian ‘stans’. The result: the greatest financial collapse in history. And the end of the ‘Empire of Chaos’s’ exceptionalist panacea.

Of course this is a doomsday scenario. But don’t provoke the bear, because the bear could pull that off in a flash.

Putin was so cool, calm, collected – and eager to delve into details – at his press conference because he knows Moscow is able to move in total autonomy. This is – of course – an asymmetrical war – against a crumbling, dangerous empire. What those intellectual midgets swarming the lame duck Obama administration are thinking? That they can sell American – and world – public opinion the notion Washington (European poodles, actually) will brave nuclear war, in the European theater, in the name of failed state Ukraine?

This is a chess game. The raid on the ruble was supposed to be a checkmate. It’s not. Not when deployed by amateur scrabble players. And don’t forget the Russia-China strategic partnership. The storm may be abating, but the match continues.


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Antiwar.com’s Dan Sanchez has just reported on leaked emails that reveal that the Obama regime exerted influence over the movie The Interview “to encourage assassination and regime change in North Korea”.

Regarding the threats of bombings of theaters if the film was shown, Obama has been personally encouraging people to “go the movies” anyway, while hardliners like Mitt Romney have specifically encouraged people to go see The Interview.

This is not the first time strongman Obama has been closely involved with promoting or influencing Hollywood movies spouting negative propaganda about countries Obama and the US want to invade and conquer.  Michelle Obama personally presented the Academy award for “best picture” for the film Argo.

Argo whitewashed the history of US aggression and genocide against Iran.  Since 1953, the US has been an accomplice in the torture and killing of over a million Iranian citizens, thousands with chemical weapons.

The Interview almost certainly whitewashes the history of US genocide against Korea, and apparently depicts US forces causing the North Korean leader’s head to explode.

In its aggressive attacks against North Korea in the early 1950s, the US intentionally targeted civilians and flattened entire villages and cities, including Pyongyang.  The attacks killed up to 4 million people, mostly civilians, most of whom were killed by the US, many through direct and intentional targeting, such as the machine-gunning of women and children by US soldiers at No Gun Ri.

Scholar Chalmers Johnson finds the North Korea of today a proud, struggling nation that, unlike the US public, is very aware of what was done to it by the US, and sees the aggressive, threatening stance the US has since maintained towards that country.

Johnson also notes that the worst act committed against Koreans by a “Korean” government was the bayoneting of thousands of students by the US-backed South Korean dictatorship in the late ’80s.

The Interview would almost certainly be another exercise in genocide denial for the US, a country that has gotten away with all of the crimes, including multiple genocides, it has thus far committed.

However, though we may be happy when Holocaust deniers and the like decide to hold their tongues, it is extremely unfortunate that Sony’s decision not to release such a film was brought about not by free will but threats of violence from unknown sources, which are to be condemned as threats against speech itself.

According to the leaked emails, Sony was hesitant about depicting the assassination of the North Korean leader, but was “encouraged” by the Obama regime to go forward with it.

It may be useful to imagine how we would feel about the reverse: a slapstick buddy comedy about the infiltration of the country considered the most dangerous in the world – the USA, not North Korea – and the “comedic” assassination of Obama by having his head catch on fire and explode.

It is also relevant to note that North Korea’s official complaint about the film, that it incites terrorism against North Korea (which is what the Obama regime apparently intended), is the same reason the US government has given countless times over the course of its existence to justify brutally crushing free speech and protest – facts all but fully ignored or suppressed in dominant US discourse.

And, as Antiwar.com and Wired report, “North Korea almost certainly did not hack Sony”.

Robert Barsocchini focuses on global force dynamics and writes professionally for the film industry.  He is a regular contributor to  Washington’s Blog, and is published in Counter Currents, Global Research, State of Globe, Blacklisted News, LewRockwell.com, DanSanchez.me, Information Clearing House, Press TV, and other outlets.  Also see: Hillary Clinton’s Record of Support for War and other Depravities.  Follow Robert and UK-based colleague, Dean Robinson, on Twitter.


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New polls show that – even after the Senate torture report showed that torture is unnecessary and doesn’t work – Americans still think torture is necessary and works.


Because they still don’t know the truth … because the mainstream media has hidden it from them. Specifically, Americans still believe that torture works to produce helpful intelligence that helps keep us safe.

Americans wouldn’t support torture if they knew the following facts, proven beyond any doubt:

They have, from the beginning, been trying to prevent an investigation into war crimes.

  • The detainees held up as “poster boy” justifications for torture actually prove the opposite


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‘Iran repeatedly warned Australia about the criminal past of the perpetrator of the Sydney cafe siege and called for him to be kept under surveillance, top officials in Tehran said.

Man Haron Monis, the Iranian-born self-styled cleric who died along with two of the people he had taken hostage, was being investigated over fraud charges when he fled in 1996, police said.

But Iran’s deputy foreign minister for Asia and Oceania affairs, Ebrahim Rahimpour, said Australia ignored the guidance sent.’

Read more: Iran to Australia: We warned you about the gunman

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Jon Stewart spent the first segment of tonight’s Daily Show diving into a former vice president’s Meet the Press appearance and asking, “Is Dick Cheney a righteous warrior or a psychopath?” Stewart called Cheney the “best-slash-worst” on this particular issue, and mocked him for setting the nation’s moral bar pretty low by defining the event of 9/11 as torture that the U.S. has not sank to.

And what amazed Stewart is how after all these years, Cheney is “impervious to doubt” and the thought that maybe any of what he says is “complete bullshit.”

Stewart concluded, “George W. Bush, thank you for not dying while you were in office.”

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‘The IMF has concluded that it was too optimistic when loaning Ukraine $17 billion at the end of April, and that the Ukrainian Government’s economic condition is far worse than the IMF expected, and also that the Government’s anti-corruption program is too weak to justify the planned loan-installments or ‘tranches’ going to Ukraine. Therefore, ‘even providing the program of the next two tranches is open to question.”

Read more: U.S. Taxpayers Now Alone in Financing Ukraine’s Ethnic Cleansing Campaign

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US to give Israel $350mn for Iron Dome

–2015 defense authorization bill also authorized $521.3 billion for Defense Department operations 13 Dec 2014 The US Senate has approved a multi-billion-dollar military spending bill that includes $350 million for Israel’s Iron Dome missile system. The Senate passed the bill on Friday by a 89-11 vote. The bill was sent to the White House for President Barack Obama’s signature. The House of Representatives last week approved the National Defense Authorization Act by a 300-119 vote.

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Sure, it’s true that Benghazi “is old hat” by now, but only by the standards of the two wings of the MSM and its “judgments” for its respective audiences.  Past the demise of Chris Stevens it was kept alive by Republicans and Fox News for partisan reasons, just as Hillary Clinton and Democrats tried to bury it in the sandbox right after his death, also for partisan reasons.

It’s a little odd to note that “Benghazi” happens to rhyme with “kamikaze” and that it is possible that the very utterance of the word incites fear and hostility with a certain audience with long memories and awareness of foreign resonances. No doubt this works out well- at least for Republican leadership.

Time and again, the media forces us to view the situation in one lens, or the other, and here is a good example: ‘Most People Have No Idea What A House Benghazi Investigation Just Found‘ where  two Huffpo  agents create a consensus reality that makes themselves appear as smarmy as anything on Fox News. A summation of their overall attitude is “there is still nothing to see here- give it up already”.

Attack on U.S. compound in Benghazi

Conservatives hammered away at the issue for close to 2 years, but despite the words of these Huffpo agents and Senator Jeff Flake, they had quietly begun to drop Benghazi from their agenda as per last summer. This was noted by NPR at the time.  And in this newer instance, it’s the lefties unwilling to let go of the situation.

This is perhaps par for the course given that Republicans (with the possible exception of Rand Paul) were disingenuous about the whole issue from Day One. With Fox News, they’d been able to cast dispersions on Hillary regarding Benghazi without having to present actual evidence of wrongdoing- Fox does this all the time. By conservative lights, the Obama administration and Hillary either bungled their responses as the attack unfolded, or have been hiding evidence that would reveal their culpability, or both.

If real evidence of Hillary’s malfeasance was produced, it would gore the ox of the Neocon agenda as well. Allegations of creating a Mideast arms bazaar with a pipeline from Libya to Syria is not only a Democratic party tar baby, but shows all of Washington to be engaged in reckless weapons-peddling, where any militant group in the Mideast could seize the day along with the weapons and come out on top.

Imagine Hillary exposed as the neocon she is, tainting Obama along the way while possibly revealing the hand of the Mossad, or at least the CIA.

Here’s some  less partisan  evidence: ‘Arms Flow to Syria May Be Behind Benghazi Cover-Up‘ and ‘Arms Continue to Flow From Benghazi to Syria‘ which both liberals and conservatives have sought to keep under the rug. One can easily see that the prevailing narrative of either party is based  on countering the other and little else, thus cloaking from view significant facts which could establish a different story entirely.

The overall goal is two-pronged; make the Republicans appear that they are flogging a dead horse, and that the Democrats are hiding something that just happens to be unproven- for the time being, of course. It works out well in the long run for both sides, and insures that real agenda remains hidden.

Viewing the Benghazi debacle through either MSM lens makes it impossible to see the real implications behind what happened – very likely government treachery at its bipartisan best. Or worst.

See: Benghazi attack resulted from US ‘allowing arms deliveries’ to militants and Flooding Syria With Foreign Arms.
Rufus Peterson, a fifty-something, bohemian Paleoconservative artist and writer living in Idaho 


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The Senate Intelligence Committee on Tuesday released a long-awaited report on CIA interrogation tactics deployed by the George W. Bush administration in the years after the September 11 attack.

Senate Intelligence Committee chairwoman Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) emphasized that the CIA’s interrogation techniques, including torture, did not lead to any valuable intelligence.

“At no time did the CIA’s coercive interrogation techniques lead to the collection of imminent threat intelligence, such as the hypothetical ‘ticking time bomb’ information that many believe was the justification for the use of these techniques.”

The report also found that the CIA lied about the effectiveness of torture, misleading both the government and the public.

“The study details how the CIA used inaccurate information to obtain legal and policy approval to use the CIA’s ‘enhanced interrogation techniques,’” Feinstein said. “The CIA provided inaccurate information to the White House, Congress, the Justice Department, the CIA inspector general, the media, and the American public.”

Also, Feinstein said, the CIA’s management of the program was deeply flawed, and the agency employed personnel who were poorly trained.

“The CIA deployed individuals without relevant training or experience. CIA also deployed officers who had documented personal and professional problems of a serious nature — including histories of violence and abusive treatment of others — that should have called into question their employment, let alone their suitability to participate in the sensitive CIA program.”

And finally, the CIA’s techniques were much more brutal than the agency admitted, the chairwoman said.

“CIA detainees at one detention facility, described as a ‘dungeon,’ were kept in complete darkness and constantly shackled in isolated cells with loud noise or music and only a bucket to use for human waste. Lack of heat at the facility likely contributed to the death of a detainee. At times, detainees were walked around naked and shackled with their hands above their head. At other times, naked detainees were hooded and dragged up and down corridors while being slapped and punched.”

Read the report (PDF) below:

Senate torture report


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Putin Aide Says Israel is Training ISIS

8 Dec 2014 A senior aide to Russian President Vladimir Putin has accused Israel’s Mossad of training Islamic State (aka ISIS) terrorists operating in Iraq and Syria, Iran’s Press TV reports. Alexander Prokhanov told the state-controlled news outlet [as opposed to ‘corporate-controlled news outlet,’ a descriptor we’ve yet to see when foreign news outlets cite any report in the US mainstream media] that Mossad is also likely to have transferred some of its “spying experience” to the leadership of ISIS, even as Israeli military advisers assisted the terrorists in other ways. Prokhanov said ISIS is a byproduct of US policies in the Middle East. “ISIS is a tool at the hands of the United States. They tell the Europeans that if we (the Americans) do not intervene, ISIS will cause you harm,” he said. In fact, however, he added, Iran and Russia are the main targets of ISIS terror.

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Israeli airstrikes hit near Damascus airport – Syrian state TV

7 Dec 2014 Israeli airstrikes have hit targets near Damascus International Airport and in the town of Dimas near the Lebanon border, Syrian state TV reports. “The Israeli enemy committed aggression against Syria by targeting two safe areas in Damascus province, in all of Dimas and near the Damascus International Airport,” the report said, adding that there were no casualties. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group said that 10 explosions were heard near Dimas, Reuters reported.

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UK-based family: Hostage might still be alive, had it not been for attempted US rescue mission

8 Dec 2014 The UK-based family of a British-born hostage killed by Islamic militants has said he might still be alive had it not been for an attempted US rescue mission. Luke Somers, 33, was shot by his al Qaida [al-CIAduh] captors as they fought US special forces attempting to extract him and South African teacher Pierre Korkie. Al Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAB) posted a video online on Thursday, threatening to kill the American citizen within three days but his stepmother Penny Bearman and half-sister Lucy Somers indicated they still had hope because previous threats had not been carried out. Ms Bearman, 55, of Deal, Kent, told the Times they were “quite angry because if there had not been a rescue attempt he wo uld still be alive.”

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Go ahead Mr.President, travel around the world for a bit. Lots of people are waiting for you.

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