Archive for the ‘media’ Category
Valentin Vasilescu refutes the theory, according to which the plane had been shot down by surface-to-air missile, which, according to American and Ukrainian versions, the militia launched from Buk-1M mobile unit.
“A surface-to-air missile, with a warhead weighing from 40 to 70 kilos, explodes not inside the object of destruction, but near it, at a distance of 50-100 meters. The detonation of the warhead produces a shock wave that disperses fragments with high velocities. They can puncture the fuselage of an aircraft, but given the size of the Boeing-777 (73 meters long, with a large wingspan), they can not lead to the destruction of the aircraft in separate smaller parts, as it happens with the aircraft that are 7-10 times smaller. Such fragments, when hitting a Boeing-777, can rupture the fuel system of the aircraft. The fuel can spread on the fuselage and wings, setting the whole plane on fire,” said the expert.
“Similarly, if the hydraulic system had been damaged, the Boeing 777 would have lost control of the flight. Thus, if such a large aircraft like Boeing-777 of Malaysia Airlines had been hit by surface-to-air missile, the crew would have been able to warn traffic control services of the situation on board. But we do not see anything like that in registers,” Valentin Vasilescu said.
Yes, I have been extremely busy the last couple of days, and this blog has indeed fallen to the wayside… But as I have said, I will put up as many articles as I can when the time is available, such as now..
No troops to Iraq, but other options are being considered.
That was President Barack Obama’s message Friday in response to the lightning advance by Sunni militant fighters in Iraq that could threaten the government of Shiite Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki.
In a statement delivered from the White House South Lawn, Obama said the United States “will not be sending U.S. troops back into combat in Iraq,” but that he would be reviewing a range of other options in coming days.
The House overwhelmingly passed a resolution Friday that would bar President Barack Obama from sending forces to Iraq in a “sustained combat role” without congressional approval, a bill with greater symbolic than legal effect.
WASHINGTON (AP) — US officials: Military weighs plan to send a small number of additional troops to Iraq.
* * *
So BOOTS WILL BE ON THE GROUND – just as President Obama had told the American people they would not be…
Of course we assume these are humanitarian assassination advising troops…
* * *
In addition to the fact that President Obama has basically declared war on ISIS… this just happened…
- *SEPARATISTS SHOOT DOWN UKRAINE SU-25 FIGHTER PLANE: REUTERS
- *ISRAEL WILL HIT HAMAS INFRASTRUCTURE, COMMANDERS: NETANYAHU
So – all war, all the time…
Ferguson is not just about systemic racism — it’s about class warfare and how America’s poor are held back, says Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
You probably have heard of the Kent State shootings: on May 4, 1970, the Ohio National Guard opened fire on student protesters at Kent State University. During those 13 seconds of gunfire, four students were killed and nine were wounded, one of whom was permanently paralyzed. The shock and outcry resulted in a nationwide strike of 4 million students that closed more than 450 campuses. Five days after the shooting, 100,000 protestors gathered in Washington, D.C. And the nation’s youth was energetically mobilized to end the Vietnam War, racism, sexism, and mindless faith in the political establishment.
You probably haven’t heard of the Jackson State shootings.
On May 14th, 10 days after Kent State ignited the nation, at the predominantly black Jackson State University in Mississippi, police killed two black students (one a high school senior, the other the father of an 18-month-old baby) with shotguns and wounded twelve others.
There was no national outcry. The nation was not mobilized to do anything. That heartless leviathan we call History swallowed that event whole, erasing it from the national memory.
And, unless we want the Ferguson atrocity to also be swallowed and become nothing more than an intestinal irritant to history, we have to address the situation not just as another act of systemic racism, but as what else it is: class warfare.
The purpose of ISIS is to help create a Greater Israel.
What the mainstream media is not reporting is beginning to leak out from local citizens in St. Louis and from an informant from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) who are all telling a different story that the one you are seeing on Fox, CNN and CBS. First, the locals are reporting that the rioting has spread far beyond the Ferguson city limits. Rioting is taking place as far away as St. Charles which is located approximately 20 miles away from Ferguson. Second, more people are becoming aware that the police chief of Ferguson, Thomas Jackson, is not in control of his own police force as he has relinquished control to DHS.
DHS Is Fanning the Flames of Violence
In the past five days I have been contacted, via one of my most trusted sources, a member of DHS who is opposed to the events and DHS involvement in Ferguson, Missouri. This source stated that DHS is running the Ferguson Police Department and their actions are designed to antagonize and to provoke the locals to violence. He further stated that he believed that the ultimate goal is to inflame the local citizens to such a point martial law will be declared.
In even a more shocking revelation, this DHS source stated that the rioting and looting which followed the shooting death of 18 year old, Michael Brown, was encouraged and exacerbated by undercover DHS agents posing as members of the Black Panthers.
Lending support to this latest accusation of DHS complicity in the rioting was the behavior of the Ferguson Police Department during the looting. During the civil unrest, the behavior of the Ferguson Police was to simply create a perimeter around the looting and allow it to continue. This violates every tenet of law enforcement. It more resembles quarantine procedures practiced by DHS, Northcom and the National Guard. The police should have moved to intervene to stop the looting and prevent the spread of violence. If the situation was beyond the control of the police, then the National Guard should have been brought in. Given the revelation of the DHS source, it seems plausible that his story of wanting the violence to escalate appears to be the case.
The Ferguson Police Deliberately Antagonizes the Media for Doing Their Job
Both Ryan Reilly, of the Huffington Post, and Washington Post reporter, Wesley Lowery, were working in a McDonald’s in Ferguson, Missouri, when a SWAT team suddenly descended upon the restaurant. After being told to stop recording the proceedings, and refusing, both men were then violently arrested in yet another case of Ferguson police brutality. Please note that recording police officers is a legal act. Lowery was shoved into a soda machine. One of Ferguson’s finest slammed Ryan Reilly’s head against glass. Lowery told the police that this would be on the front page of the Washington Post tomorrow and the officer responded, “Yeah, well you will be in my jail cell tonight”.
Thomas Jackson is supposed to be the Chief of Police in Ferguson, Missouri. Thomas Jackson has largely been reduced to a figure head and is not in command of his own paramilitary police force that has been outfitted and equipped by DHS. Jackson has so completely lost control of his own force, he expressed extreme surprise when he was told by reporter Matt Pearce that reporters Reilley and Lowery were being arrested (see tweet below). Does the Chief know that other members of the media are being threatened for merely covering the events as reporters are mandated and permitted to do? If this “Chief” had control of his police force, he would have strict rules for dealing with the media and these rules would not consist of promoting the police brutality described below. The last thing a police chief should want is to alienate the media in hostile and controversial situation. This Chief should be arresting any provocateurs who have infiltrated his department and are giving orders. Instead, he is laying down in the face of illegitimate DHS authority which is operating in violation of the 10th Amendment. Thomas Jackson needs to immediately resign.
Interesting how swat stood down as the looters got away with stolen merchandise but fired tear gas and rubber bullets at peaceful protestors
Ferguson, Missouri (CNN) — [Breaking news update, posted at 11:30 a.m. ET]
Friday’s release by Ferguson police of video allegedly showing teenager Michael Brown robbing a store shortly before he was killed last week came over the objections of federal authorities, a law enforcement official told CNN on Saturday.
Ferguson police had wanted to release the video Thursday, but it held off when the U.S. Justice Department asked it not to, arguing that doing so would increase tensions in the community, the source said.
Yet the city’s police chief released it Friday, the same day he released the name of the officer who he says killed Brown, 18, minutes after the alleged theft.
[Earlier version, posted at 10:25 a.m. ET]
(CNN) — A fragile peace shattered in Ferguson early Saturday, as looters again robbed neighborhood business while law enforcement officers — who returned to the streets with riot gear, tactical rifles and armored vehicles — looked on but largely didn’t intervene.
Saturday marks one week since Michael Brown died from police gunfire, and protesters plan to commemorate the moment he died with a vigil across from the Ferguson police station.
At noon, near the hour that Officer Darren Wilson shot Brown, 18, in the Missouri town, protesters will silently raise their hands into the air.
That’s what Brown did before he died, witnesses say, while Wilson kept firing at him.
A second rally is planned for 3 p.m. (4 p.m. ET) near St. Louis’ Gateway Arch, with members of Brown’s family expected to attend.
More stores looted
Looters began Saturday’s pillage at the Ferguson Market and Liquor store, which has become part of the case surrounding Brown. Shortly before Brown was shot last week, police say, a man fitting his description allegedly stole cigars and roughed up a store clerk as surveillance cameras recorded.
Release of the video on Friday angered some, who say police were using it to distract from Brown’s killing and make him look bad.
More than two dozen people blocked off the store with cars early Saturday, then officers commanded them through loudspeakers to free it up.
Instead, bottles flew, mayhem erupted, and looters ransacked the store, which the owner had boarded up. It was the first of at least three stores raided.
Looters ran out of shops with boxes stacked in their arms up to their chins. Behind them lay overturned shelves, spilled goods and wrecked displays. All the while, police stayed back by their armored vehicles and observed but did not stop them.
Three Molotov cocktails pummeled the roof of a Domino’s Pizza, burning a hole, before firefighters put the flames out.
About an hour later, about a dozen people lined up to block Ferguson Market and Liquor’s entrance, saying they were keeping looters out. But before sunrise, looters returned there for a second round.
Owners of the raided stores expressed frustration that police, looking on nearby, didn’t stop the looters.
“I understand that you’re not safe either, but you still have a job to do now, and now you’re not doing your job,” Tanya Littleton, owner of the looted Feel Beauty Supply, said about police in an phone interview with CNN.
The beauty store’s floor was littered with broken glass and merchandise, video from CNN affiliate KTVI showed. Looters took off with hair extensions worth at least $200 a bag, Littleton said.
“We’re shut down for a while. It’s not safe, and the police are doing nothing about it,” she told KTVI.
Also targeted was Sam’s Meat Market and Liquor. After hearing that people grabbed chicken, bacon and spirits from their store, the owners arrived with guns and stood outside, warding off any further raids.
Jay Kanzler, lawyer for Ferguson Market and Liquor, said police did nothing to stop the looting in town.
“Don’t know why the … police didn’t do anything. They were told to stand down and I don’t know why,” Kanzler said.
Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon had put the Missouri State Highway Patrol in charge of protest security in Ferguson after days of sometimes violent clashes between police and protesters. CNN’s call to the patrol Saturday morning wasn’t immediately returned.
Prior to the bedlam, protests had been peaceful late Friday, continuing the mood that taken hold the previous night, when quiet had returned to the Missouri town after consecutive nights of violence between protesters and police.
The new security arrangements led by Missouri State Highway Patrol Capt. Ron Johnson seemed to have calmed tensions that day. He had bonded with the community, becoming the figurehead of softer crowd policing and unblemished protests.
Police announcement controversy
Brown’s family and protesters in Ferguson demanded, for nearly a week, to learn the name of the officer who pulled the trigger. Ferguson police delayed the release, citing safety concerns and saying that police had received death threats.
On Friday they conceded, revealing Wilson’s identity.
But their announcement triggered disappointment and criticism, because it was coupled with the surveillance camera video and other material incriminating Brown.
Documents fingered the teen as the “primary suspect,” who walked off with a box of cigars valued at $48.99. They also named a key witness in his shooting case, Dorian Johnson, as the “second suspect” in the theft.
Companion committed no crime
But Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson later said Dorian Johnson neither committed nor was complicit in any crime.
Johnson said he was with Brown at the time of the shooting and that Wilson shot Brown without provocation.
“We wasn’t committing any crime, bringing no harm to nobody, but my friend was murdered in cold blood,” he told CNN affiliate KMOV.
Two witnesses say Wilson, 28, shot Brown multiple times, as he tried to break away from the officer. The same two witnesses have contradicted the claim by police that Brown had fought with Wilson in his patrol vehicle and groped for his gun.
No one has disputed witness accounts that Brown was unarmed when he died.
One side of Wilson’s face was left swollen after the confrontation, police said.
Hours after the material was made public, Chief Jackson told reporters that the robbery wasn’t the reason Wilson stopped Brown. Rather, he said, it was because he was “walking down the middle of the street blocking traffic.”
Jackson expressed “every confidence” in Wilson, who has been a police officer for six years, four of those spent on Ferguson’s force.
Police have said that evidence and testimony in the shooting will be presented to a grand jury, which will decide whether Wilson should be tried.
Timing of disclosure criticized
The tall, sturdy young man in the video “appears to be” Brown, said his family’s lawyer Benjamin Crump. But the family wasn’t informed of the robbery or store surveillance video ahead of time, he said.
And it’s immaterial, said Eric Davis, who is related to Brown.
“It’s a diversion, and it’s an attempt to smear Michael’s character,” he said. “It (should be) more about what happened on Canfield Drive, where Michael was executed.”
Johnson, the Highway Patrol captain, also was sour on the information release. The robbery and Brown’s shooting “are separate issues,” he said.
“I told (Chief Jackson) I think both of those being released today was not needed and was not the way that we needed to go,” he said
Posted in criminal justice system, death, government, law, media, tagged Antonio French, Ferguson MO, Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson, Michael Brown, St. Louis County, St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar, St. Louis County Police Department on August 16, 2014 | Leave a Comment »
“We’ve done everything we can to demonstrate a remarkable amount of restraint,” St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar said in an interview outside the command post. “If there was an easy way to fix this, we would have already solved the problem.”
Officers had heard sporadic gunfire, he said. At least 10 people were arrested.
One of them was St. Louis Alderman Antonio French, a friend of his, Liz Peinado, said in a Twitter post. During the unrest, French has posted videos on social media of protests and the police presence on the streets. His arrest could not be independently confirmed late Wednesday.
Gov. Jay Nixon tweeted that he was canceling planned appearances to visit the area Thursday. He added: “Closely monitoring situation…. Ask for calm & urge law enforcement to respect rights of residents & press.”
President Obama was briefed on the situation, a White House spokesman tweeted.
During the nighttime confrontation, protesters with shirts wrapped around their faces held signs that read, “Hands up, don’t shoot,” as police closed in on the crowd. The slogan has been adopted by protesters because witnesses said 18-year-old Michael Brown was running with his hands in the air when a policeman shot him to death Saturday in Ferguson.
In live amateur video posted to social media, police could be overheard telling the group to get out of the area or they would be arrested. Clouds of tear gas were visible in the background.
The latest unrest came hours after St. Louis County Prosecutor Robert McCulloch said details about the Brown shooting would not be released any time soon.
“We are still in the information-gathering part of the investigation,” McCulloch said in a televised news conference.
He urged anyone with information to come forward and promised that every piece of evidence would be reviewed, presented to a grand jury and eventually made public.
By withholding details from the public during the criminal inquiry, investigators would be better able to gauge witnesses’ credibility, he said.
Along with the St. Louis County Police Department, the FBI and civil rights attorneys from the Justice Department are conducting parallel investigations.
It appears the cops are just making the situation worse. The vandalism took place last Sunday night, it’s now Wednesday and the cops are using APC’s and tear gas on those who are just demonstrating. They have a right to demonstrate under the Constitution so long as it is not violent…
Racial tension has simmered since Saturday’s shooting, beginning with a protest late that day. Then, on Sunday night, vandals rampaged through 12 businesses, burning one and breaking windows.
Ferguson is a working-class suburb of 21,000, where two-thirds of residents are black but police and city officials are predominantly white.
Although the largest protests have been peaceful, demonstrations have turned ugly at night.
Mostly, the protests have been bloodless. But about 1 a.m. Wednesday, St. Louis County police said, an officer shot and critically wounded a man who had pointed a handgun at the officer near the site of the Brown shooting.
Before Ferguson: Deaths of other black men at hands of police
Before Ferguson: Deaths of other black men at hands of police
Earlier Wednesday, Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson said he would not identify the officer involved in the Brown shooting because a rumor had misidentified the officer and prompted death threats.
The officer who shot Brown was injured in the confrontation and the “side of his face was swollen,” Jackson said. The officer was treated at a hospital, the chief said, and he was “very shaken.”
Jackson said the department has asked protesters to rally only during daylight hours to ensure community safety.
Local law enforcement authorities released only a few details about the shooting, and several witnesses have disputed the police account.
Brown had been walking down a street with a friend Saturday about noon when, according to police, an officer drove up and attempted to get out of his patrol car, and Brown pushed the officer back into the car.
After an altercation over a weapon in the car, the officer and Brown got out of the vehicle, and the fatal shooting occurred, according to Belmar, the St. Louis County police chief. Bystanders said Brown had raised his hands to surrender when the fatal shots occurred.
Wednesday evening, a brief contretemps occurred when two journalists were taken into custody.
The reporters — one from the Washington Post, the other from the Huffington Post — were quickly released after the intervention of Jackson, Ferguson’s police chief.
Times staff writers Ryan Parker and Lauren Raab in Los Angeles contributed to this report.
‘In a perfect example of how world events can be misconstrued in mainstream media outlets for propaganda purposes, recent reports regarding trapped Yazidis on Mt. Sinjar have been used as cover for the justification of an American bombing campaign in Iraq.
This tragedy, which is very real, has been presented to the American public as the reason that the U.S. military is engaging in “targeted airstrikes” in Iraq, despite the fact that the area where the airstrikes initially took place was Erbil, a “hub” for major international oil companies which is not “in the vicinity” of Mt. Sinjar.
Although some airstrikes did eventually take place near Mt. Sinjar, the truth is that the trapped Yazidis were used as an excuse for the American military to act as protection for oil fields and international oil interests.’
“My administration has been closely monitoring the situation in Egypt, and I know that we will be learning more tomorrow when day breaks. As the situation continues to unfold, our first concern is preventing injury or loss of life. So I want to be very clear in calling upon the Egyptian authorities to refrain from any violence against peaceful protestors.
The people of Egypt have rights that are universal. That includes the right to peaceful assembly and association, the right to free speech, and the ability to determine their own destiny. These are human rights. And the United States will stand up for them everywhere.”
- U.S. President Barack Obama, January 28, 2011
The events in Ferguson, Missouri went from what could have been just another all too common and tragic incident in which an unarmed black man is killed by an overly aggressive and unprofessional police force, to what may be a historically significant event in American history. So how did this transformation occur and what does it mean going forward? Those are the two questions I intend to address in this post.
There are two primary factors that have collided to create the current out of control situation in a suburb roughly 15 miles northwest of St. Louis, which before this past weekend, almost no one had ever heard of. The first factor is the underlying tension in American society that I have been writing about for several years now. Nowhere is this tension more apparent than in the minority majority inner cities or their outskirts. Being a privileged person, I have thankfully never experienced the dehumanization and oppression felt by so many in these disenfranchised communities, but I can still understand the fact that these neighborhoods are ground zero in the civil unrest that is likely to continue into the foreseeable future.
The second factor is the entirely inappropriate and dangerous militarization of police forces throughout these United States. While extreme tension between impoverished communities and the police has been well documented for decades and expressed through music and movies (I grew up with NWA’s Fuck Tha Police and Colors), the cops were generally speaking merely men and women driving around in patrol cars with guns and batons. Not to dismiss the violence that can and has been inflicted through those means, but the police in recent years have taken things to a whole new frightening level: Total Militarization.
I consider this trend to be such an existential threat to freedom and civil liberties that I have expended a considerable deal of time and energy over the past several years highlighting it. I have covered the topic too many times to list here (I will provide a compilation at the end of this post), but there is one in particular I want to mention. The post was published two months ago and was titled: The Militarization of Police Continues…Machine Guns, Grenade Launchers, Silencers and More. In it I quoted the following from a New York Times article:
During the Obama administration, according to Pentagon data, police departments have received tens of thousands of machine guns; nearly 200,000 ammunition magazines; thousands of pieces of camouflage and night-vision equipment; and hundreds of silencers, armored cars and aircraft.
The equipment has been added to the armories of police departments that already look and act like military units. Police SWAT teams are now deployed tens of thousands of times each year, increasingly for routine jobs. Masked, heavily armed police officers in Louisiana raided a nightclub in 2006 as part of a liquor inspection. In Florida in 2010, officers in SWAT gear and with guns drawn carried out raids on barbershops that mostly led only to charges of “barbering without a license.”
I then concluded the post with the following observation:
Of all the bad ideas currently being implemented in these United States, turning the police into soldiers is certainly near the top of the list
Posted in economics, foreign policy, government, history, media, military, tagged Al Qaeda, Anthony Cordesman, Iraq, Iraq war, Obama, President Obama, war in Iraq, Washington on August 13, 2014 | Leave a Comment »
With a series of air strikes beginning Friday and continuing through the weekend, the United States has gone to war again in Iraq. This new imperialist military adventure has been launched in defiance of overwhelming popular opposition and without a shred of legal or constitutional authority.
The decision to launch a new war was made by a handful of strategists of US imperialist policy within the military/intelligence apparatus, in league with the corporate and financial elite. It was made behind the backs of the American people, who have absolutely no say in the policies, including going to war, that impact their lives.
President Obama’s Thursday night announcement authorizing the launching of air strikes and other actions against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) came just one day after Anthony Cordesman of the Center for Strategic and International Studies published an analysis calling for an escalation of US military operations in Iraq. Cordesman and his Washington DC think tank occupy a prominent place within the network of intelligence and military strategists who determine US foreign policy.
Cordesman and his like are involved in a permanent conspiracy against the wishes and interests of the broad mass of the American people, in which the president serves as executor and front-man. Their decisions to launch wars and subvert targeted foreign governments are dutifully approved by the leaders of both big business parties in Congress. The corporate-controlled media is assigned the task of dispensing propaganda and disinformation in support of militarism and war.
Opinion polls show that 71 percent of the American population regards the 2003-2011 Iraq War with hostility. But what the vast majority of the American people think and feel has no bearing on the policies and decisions of the key actors in Washington.
There is no longer even the formality of public hearings, debate or a congressional vote. No explanation is offered as to how and why a country that had no Al Qaeda presence until the 2003 invasion, supposedly carried out to fight Al Qaeda terrorism, has been largely overrun by an Al Qaeda offshoot. There is no explanation for the terrible squandering of Iraqi lives, with over a million killed, and American lives, with tens of thousands killed and wounded, or the waste of trillions of dollars to finance the slaughter.
The politicians and media are silent on the role of the CIA in promoting and aiding ISIS and similar Al Qaeda-linked forces and using them as proxy fighters in the US wars for regime-change in Libya and Syria.
Obama’s speech announcing the decision on Iraq was a demonstration of contempt for the views of the American people. He went on national television at 9:30 p.m. on a Thursday night, with no advance notice. The timing was determined in part by the need to begin the bombing before he left Saturday morning for his three-week holiday at a millionaire’s estate on Martha’s Vineyard.
Obama made only the most perfunctory arguments on behalf of the resumption of air strikes. Only the most uninformed and naïve can seriously believe that the US government is moved by concern for the fate of innocent civilians—particularly after the month-long spectacle of Israel incinerating the people of Gaza with bombs and missiles supplied by the United States.
The president’s other professed concern, the “lives of American citizens” at risk at the US consulate in Erbil and the embassy in Baghdad, is a formula for unlimited military aggression. The US government has facilities in every major city in the world. In the case of local military clashes, the normal practice is for such outposts to be evacuated, not defended by force. To do otherwise would mean American military intervention in every armed conflict on the planet.
Military officials told McClatchy News Service, “There is probably some gray area” in the new US war in Iraq, indicating that the aims go far beyond the “limited” intervention described by Obama Thursday night. They noted that the most recent “limited” mission undertaken by the Obama administration, in Libya, ended in the overthrow and killing of the country’s longtime ruler Muammar Gaddafi.
Obama admitted in his speech that renewing military operations in Iraq was deeply unpopular, particularly among those who voted for him in 2008 as a professed opponent of the war launched by President George W. Bush. He repeated a worthless pledge not to send combat troops, and then argued, “America has been able to make the world a more secure and prosperous place.” This absurd claim applies least of all to Iraq, a country largely destroyed as a functioning society by three decades of US bombing, economic blockade and military occupation.
The White House indicated it would send Congress an official notice under the War Powers Resolution that combat operations have begun in Iraq. But Obama aides said no congressional authorization was required because Obama had legal authority to order the use of force to protect American troops in Iraq—the troops he sent to Iraq less than two months ago to serve as a trip wire to justify further US military action.
Earlier this year, White House aides testified before Congress that the president as commander-in-chief had the power to order US military action anywhere in the world, including the invasion of a country, without any congressional authorization. The renewed bombing in Iraq represents an assertion of this untrammeled and quasi-dictatorial power.
Obama declared Saturday that the intervention in Iraq would go on for months, if not longer. It thus represents an open-ended commitment of the military and financial resources of the US government. Tens of billions of dollars will be thrown into the furnace of war to secure the interests of American imperialism in the vast oil resources of the region.
Who will pay the price? The Iraqi people, through death and devastation, and the American people, who will be told, once again, that there is “no money” for jobs, pay raises, pensions or other social benefits.
The renewed military intervention in Iraq is only one component in a far broader imperialist agenda. Obama’s so-called “pivot” to Asia does not mean shifting the focus of American imperialism from the oil-rich Middle East to a confrontation with China. It means adding the Far East to the Middle East, Central Asia, Ukraine, Libya and countless other areas where US imperialism is preparing to carry out aggression.
The continued control of a cabal of CIA, Pentagon and think tank conspirators, operating in conjunction with the American financial oligarchy, over US political and economic affairs poses a mortal danger to the future of all humanity.
Riots are have erupted with hundreds of protesters gathering at a suburban St. Louis police station on Monday demanding murder charges against an officer who shot to death an unarmed black teenager over the weekend. Looting just went nuts like the ’60s. While this is being painted as a race issue, there is yet another issue that is not being addressed – that is the militarization of the civil police forces around the country.
Ever since 911, there has been a trend moving toward much harsher local police. Here is a photo of how the Boston Police have militarized to the point it looks like war against the people. Even small towns are geared up for war.
The small town of Medford, Oregon with a population of 76,462 has spent millions of dollars to militarize their police. They have their own Swat Teams, yet no incident in history of some major shooting of such a nature to warrant a Swat Team. The entire reason where there was the Second Amendment was to eliminate this very threat of standing armies. We are seeing the abuse of force at every level. Medford Police bought a new vehicle that some say could survive a so-called the apocalypse. They used their Swat Team to go after a mere carjacker.
Medford, New Jersey with a population of just 23,033 also has a Swat Team. They rushed in and held two white kids on the ground at gun-point for shooting potatoes into a lake setting hair spray as the propellant.
The whole thing about standing armies has been their historical use out of boredom. It is a shame to pay for something and then not use it. Police use to be friendly as shown in Normal Rockwell’s classic painting. Sure there are a few good souls still left. But the attitudes have shifted to being just mean and nasty as they look at the civilian population as evil.
This is a problem that is brewing and is extremely dangerous to say the least. Examples of police abuse are all over the internet. There has been a loss of respect for the people and there seems to be no way to reverse this process.
They sprayed protesters in the eyes during Occupy Wall Street movements everywhere. The conduct has been outrageous. This killing of this black teen is not simply racism. The problems are much deeper. Claiming this is just racism deflects the entire issue and makes it simply black-v-white. This is something far more serious for it is impacting our entire society.
The protests over land was yet another example. The police showed up with weapons and told the people they would shoot to kill. The police are being transformed from protecting the public into protecting government from the public. Most do not even see what transformation they have gone through.
* * *
Even though the economy has somewhat stabilized (at least for the moment), levels of anger and frustration have continued to grow in this country. We have been taught to hate one another and to blame one another for our problems, and so now the U.S. is more divided than at any other point in recent memory. For much more on this, please see my previous article entitled “America The Divided: Everyone Knows We Have Problems But There Is Very Little Agreement On Solutions“.
We live at a time when things are so tense that even a small spark can light an absolutely huge fire. America has become a tinderbox. Next time it might not be a racially-charged shooting. Next time it might be an Ebola outbreak that sparks looting and panic. Or it might be some sort of financial collapse. We just don’t know.
But what we do know is that there are lots and lots of people that are willing to riot and loot and commit unspeakable crimes given the right circumstances.
Decades of social decay have gotten us to the point where the thin veneer of civilization that we all take for granted every single day is wearing dangerously thin.
The truth is that it is not going to take much to push this nation over the edge.
If this kind of rioting can take place in a community with just over 20,000 people, what would a full-blown riot look like in a city with millions of people?
That is a very sobering thing to think about.
Once upon a time in America, you could leave your doors unlocked at night and you could let your kids play in the streets without ever having to worry.
But now we are a sick, decaying nation that has millions of people ready to riot and loot at the drop of a hat.
Is there any hope for us?