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 –U.S. has spent $7BILLION on 5,000 air strikes against ISIS targets…but still struggles to convince Iraqis it doesn’t support terror group

| 08 May 2016 | Government-allied Shiite militiamen on the front-lines post videos of U.S. supplies purportedly seized from ISIS militants or found in areas liberated from the extremist group…While supervising the channel’s war reporting last year, al-Ahad TV spokesman Atheer al-Tariq claimed to have witnessed incidents when U.S. forces helped ISIS. As Iraqi security forces prepared to enter the city of Tikrit in April, he said two U.S. helicopters evacuated senior militants. A few months later, during an operation to retake the Beiji oil refinery, crates of weapons, ammunition and food were dropped over militant-held territory, he said. ‘Is it logical to believe that America, the source of technology and science, could fire a rocket or drop aid materials in a mistaken way?’ he asked. Videos uploaded to social media by front-line militiamen purport to tell a similar story. One shows U.S. military MREs, ‘meals, ready-to-eat,’ as well as uniforms and weapons said to have been found in an area held by IS. Another shows the interrogation of a captured IS militant. ‘Check out his boots, they are from the U.S. army,’ a fighter says. Another fighter points to a pile of rocket-propelled grenades he says were made in the U.S. and shipped to ISIS.

Video depicts U.S. military MREs, uniforms, and weapons found in area held by ISIS

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AP I IRQ Iraq War Anniversary

If journalism was once considered the first rough draft of history, now, when it comes to American military policy at least, it’s often the first rough pass at writing a script for ‘The Daily Show.’ Take, for example, a little inside-the-paper piece that Eric Schmitt of the New York Times penned recently with this headline: ‘New Role for General After Failure of Syria Rebel Plan.’

Read more: Do You Know How Many Countries the US Military’s Deployed In?

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Apologies to Washington and Jefferson for posting this one, but they can take it ;)

From Charles Davis at Salon.com:

Terrible findings in the torture report “are not who we are,” John Kerry claims. Well, here’s a U.S. history lesson

America, nation of torturers: Stop saying "this isn't who we are" -- here's the real truth

John Yoo, Kiefer Sutherland as Jack Bauer in “24: Live Another Day,” John Brennan (Credit: AP/Susan Walsh/Fox/Reuters/Larry Downing/Photo collage by Salon)

It’s comforting for those whose actions are not aligned with their stated values to believe that what one does in real life is not what ultimately defines who one really is. It’s nice to think who we are is determined not by the things we did the day before, but by the stated ideals we hope to aspire to fulfill, starting tomorrow. In a nation-state founded by settler-colonial Protestants, the argument is familiar – it’s what’s deep down inside that gets one up into heaven, not the good or genocidal nature of what one does down here on Earth – and as with any half-decent lie, it’s relatable: as fallible human beings, we’d all rather like to believe that we’re not as bad as we are but as good as we say we would like to be.

While founded on the ethnic cleansing of the continent’s original inhabitants and the enslavement of its African workforce, the news – or rather, confirmation – that the CIA employed a revolting range of “enhanced” torture techniques in the wake of 9/11 is being portrayed by some as a vile exception to the United States’ otherwise exceptional history; a “stain on our values and history,” in the words of Senator Dianne Feinstein, whose committee released the report detailing the agency’s use of near-drownings and mock executions and sexual abuse to humiliate and demoralize a foreign “other” under the guise of gathering intelligence. These practices, the terrible things this country has again and again been shown to do, “are not who we are,” addedSecretary of State John Kerry. Indeed, “the awful facts of this report” do not even “represent who they are,” he said of those awful people described in that report (“its important that this period not define the intelligence community in anyone’s mind,” he continued).

“Some of the actions that were taken were contrary to our values,” President Barack Obama chimed in, crediting his government with, as always, correcting its own mistakes (“They aren’t picking up prisoners anymore,” Senator James Risch explained to CNN. “What they do is when they identify a high-value target, the target is droned.”).

As a rhetorical ploy, it’s understandable: Saying the United States has always been garbage is not going to be terribly popular in a nation that still fondly refers to a group of sadistic slave-owners as its “founding fathers” — so politicians savvy enough to know that openly embracing torture is not a good look for the world’s leading state-sponsor of holier-than-thou rhetoric, appeal to a history and set of values that never was and never were in practice, as a way to give political cover to their middling, public relations-minded critiques of the national-security state’s least defensible excesses. It’s entirely false, this narrative of extreme goodness marked by occasional self-correcting imperfection, but it satisfies our national ego to think the American phoenix rises from a store of ethically traded gold, not a pile of rotting trash.

“We will likely hear these false appeals to an imaginary history a great deal with the release of the Senate report on CIA torture,” writes Juan Cole, a history professor at the University of Michigan. But even historians can fall victim to America’s easier to digest mythology, with Cole proceeding to characterize the ugly truth about the United States – that it was founded on the “exaltation of ‘whiteness’ over universal humanity, and preference for property rights over human rights” – as but a right-wing lie. As he tells it, the likes of George Washington and Thomas Jefferson were actually progressives who would almost certainly “have voted to release the report and . . . been completely appalled at its contents.”

Cole follows that assertion up with a list of things that some of these founding fathers said they believed: Jefferson, for instance, argued that the formal abolition of torture in the French legal system was in keeping with “the progress of philanthropy and civilization.” And the Bill of Rights of course prohibits “cruel and unusual punishment.” But, naggingly, the actual record of those who gave those nice speeches and drafted the Constitution suggests we shouldn’t just believe what they said and wrote down.

“Fascists will argue that the Constitution does not apply to captured foreign prisoners of war, or that the prisoners were not even P.O.W.s, having been captured out of uniform,” writes Cole. “But focusing on the category of the prisoner is contrary to the spirit of the founding fathers.”

Except, it isn’t at all – and if fascism is denying human rights on the basis of nationality or appearance, than the exalted founders were of course fascists themselves. The same document that ostensibly prohibits torture also defined an African slave as three-fifths of a person – and even then, only for purposes of bolstering the political power of those who enslaved them: in practice, they were treated as property whose master could torture or murder them with impunity. This is not pedantry: Hundreds of thousands of people were denied their ostensibly inalienable rights because of the color of their skin; nearly four million by the time of the Civil War, or almost half the population of the South.

Thomas Jefferson, for instance, may have agonized over the evil of slavery, usually in private, but then he also reputedly raped a 15-year-old he owned and, according to the Thomas Jefferson Foundation, paid $70 just so he could have a runaway slave he had already sold off to someone else “severely flogged in the presence of his old companions.” At least once, Jefferson even“ordered the destruction of all dogs belonging to his slaves,” according to researcher Mary V. Thompson. “At least one of the condemned dogs was hung as a disciplinary warning.”

Jefferson was a savage white supremacist who in practice if not always in speech believed that people of color (“slaves” and “savages” as they were known then; “thugs” and “terrorists” as they’re often called today) did not deserve all the same rights as wealthy white Americans like him; he could own them, but they could not even own a pet. The sometimes beautiful talk of universal rights popular around the time of the American revolution was ignored in practice; then as now there were giant exceptions for those whom it would be inconvenient to consider fully human.

Torture has always been commonplace in the United States. As former slave Harriet Ann Jacobs recounted, a wealthy slaveholder who was “highly educated, and styled a perfect gentleman,” tied up a fellow slave to a cotton gin for four days and five nights as punishment for running away; he “was found partly eaten by rats and vermin,” which had likely “gnawed him before life was extinct.” His body was unceremoniously dumped in a grave. “Women are considered of no value,” Jacobs recalled – “This same master shot a woman through the head” for running away, without harm to his social status (“the feeling was that the master had a right to do what he pleased with his own property”) – and any man who resisted a whipping risked being set upon by dogs “to tear his flesh from his bones.”

“I do not say there are no humane slaveholders,” Jacobs concluded her account. “Such characters do exist . . . . But they are ‘like angels’ visits – few and far between.’” And Africans weren’t the only ones denied the rights enjoyed by human property-owning white men.

“The kind of warfare the U.S. military practices today in the rest of the world was developed in their irregular counter-insurgency against Native nations, starting in the British colonial period for sure, but developing uniquely and more harshly once the U.S. was independent with a policy of conquering the continent,” said historian Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz. “The important thing to stress about the use of torture,” she told me, “is that it is unrelated to ‘getting information.’ Torture is used in counterinsurgency to terrorize a population . . . [it’s] a preventative measure to suppress resistance by terrifying the insurgents, breaking their will to continue.” And America has a long, ignoble history of doing it.

In her most recent book, An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States, notes that British colonists in America organized militias in order to steal land from the less-than-human natives, seeking “to disrupt every aspect of resistance as well as to obtain intelligence” by taking prisoners, “destroying indigenous villages and fields and intimidating and slaughtering enemy noncombatant populations.” A settler named Hannah Dustin became a folk hero in 17th century America after presenting 10 indigenous scalps to the Massachusetts General Assembly, which rewarded her “with bounties for two men, two women, and six children” (later on, the bounties were eliminated for indigenous children under the age of 10; “values”).

Seeking to expand his young nation-state’s territory, President George Washington concluded that, “No other remedy remains, but to extirpate, utterly if possible,” the indigenous population that stood in the white settlers’ way. Andrew Jackson personally waged total war against the men, women and children of the Muskogee Nation before becoming president and ethnically cleansing all native peoples East of the Mississippi; today the guy’s face is on the $20 bill. At Sand Creek, during the presidency of Abe Lincoln, dozens of unarmed Cheyenne and Arapaho Indians were massacred. “All manner of depredations were inflicted on their persons,” recountedone eyewitness. “They were scalped, their brains knocked out; the men used their knives, ripped open women, clubbed little children, knocked them in the head with their guns, beat their brains out, mutilated their bodies in every sense of the word.”

Instead of renouncing this history, we have chosen to celebrate a mythical, white-washed version of it, with genocide relegated to a footnote. If our leaders were more honest, they’d admit that the CIA’s recently revealed torture isn’t a break from this legacy, but the fruit of it – the product of decades of dehumanizing counter-insurgency warfare that expanded the USA from 13 colonies on the East Coast to much of North America and, ultimately, a global empire (it’s no coincidence that the code-name for Osama bin Laden was “Geronimo,” taken from the famed Apache leader).

After almost wiping out America’s original inhabitants, the U.S. government went on to declare total war on differently pigmented people around the globe. President Woodrow Wilson re-instituted slavery (or “forced labor”) in Haiti after its political class proved insufficiently compliant, his famed commitment to the right of self-determination not extending to those darker than pasty white. In Vietnam, the CIA’s “Phoenix Program” saw those accused of collaborating with the North Vietnamese subjected to “assassination, kidnapping, and systematic torture,”according to historian Douglas Valentine. Inmates at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq were raped and murdered. And today, amid official proclamations that we live in a post-torture age, inmates held in Guantanamo Bay – many of whom could never even go to a show trial because insofar as there’s any real evidence against them it was gained through torture – continue to be subjected to torturous force-feedings that have been condemned by the United Nations.

The abuse, exported across Latin America through the torture-training School of the Americas, also continues here at home, with tens of thousands of black and brown and poor white US citizens currently languishing in mind-destroying solitary confinement, California’s Pelican Bay State Prison alone holding over 500 people in isolation for a decade or more. In Chicago, a cop who electrocuted and otherwise tortured more than 200 people until they confessed to crimes they didn’t do, got off with about 3 years behind bars after the evidence of his sadism became too great to ignore; that’s less prison time than if he had been caught with a gram of crack cocaine.

Pointing all this out – noting that the U.S. government has rarely lived up to its stated ideals – is not to engage in mere pedantry, nor is it an attempt to suggest this country is irredeemably evil. This nation was born in genocide and slavery, sure, still it could conceivably change – but only if, instead of ignoring the institutionalized injustice, we recognizing and call out the systemic cause of the alleged “aberrations” our leaders are forced to distance themselves from every 18 months. The problem is not that the tree of liberty has produced a few bad seeds, but that the settler-colonists who planted it on someone else’s land watered it with blood of slaves and native peoples. It’s not George W. Bush and Dick Cheney who are responsible for making America a state that tortures, but George Washington and that other dick Tom Jefferson.

Avoiding the routine departure from “our values” requires confronting our actual history; it’s the only way to learn from it. Torture and total war are not the work of a few bad people, but the product of a system that from its inception treated human beings as property and the right to property as more important than the rights of women and men – it’s who we are, and if we want the violence wrought by our system to end, we must honestly address the systemic cause. The paeans to our imagined greatness might be comforting, we should resist the temptation to out-patriot the right or else we’ll end up just like them: doing public relations for the system that allows this evil to keep happening. And if humanity ever does manage to kick the habit of installing the worst among us at the top of hierarchical and unaccountable systems of power, history may very well judge us by our actions, not our pretty words and beautifully articulated aspirations.

 

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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.

 

Click for bigger

http://www.anti-bases.org/campaigns/NMD_PineGap/Map_of_US_Military_Bases_in_Australia.html

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Silver Buffalo rounds ONLY 75 cents over spot, ANY QTY!

F-35 Joint Strike Fighters are "the most expensive weapons system” in US history.

F-35 Joint Strike Fighters are “the most expensive weapons system” in US history.

Consider this: our advanced robotic creatures, those drone aircraft grimly named Predators and Reapers, are still blowing away human beings from Yemen to Pakistan.  Meanwhile, the Pentagon is now testing out a 14,000-pound drone advanced enough to take off and land on its own on the deck of an aircraft carrier — no human pilot involved.  (As it happens, it’s only a “demonstrator” and, at a cost of $1.4 billion, can’t do much else.)  While we’re talking about the skies, who could forget that the US military is committed to buying 2,400 F-35 Joint Strike Fighters, already dubbed, amid cost overruns of every sort, “the most expensive weapons system in history.”  The bill for them: nearly $400 billion or twice what it cost to put a man on the moon.

In similar fashion, the US Navy, with 10 aircraft carriers afloat on a planet on which no other nation has more than two, is now building a new class of “supercarriers.”  The first of them, the USS Gerald R. Ford, is due for delivery in 2016 at an estimated cost of more than $12 billion.  It, too, is experiencing the sort of cost overruns and performance problems that now seem to accompany all new US weapons systems.  In the meantime, Washington has dispatched one of its littoral combat ships (a troubled $34 billion weapons system) to Singapore; is flying manned aircraft and drones over the Nigerian bush; and as for building national security state infrastructure of just about any sort, seldom has a problem getting Congress to pony up — as in the $69 million now in the 2015 defense budget for the latest prison being constructed at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, meant to house just 15 “high-value” prisoners.  Similarly, when it comes to the infrastructure needed to listen in on the world, the sky’s the limit, including an almost $2 billion data center built for the National Security Agency in Bluffdale, Utah.  In such “infrastructural” realms, the US is today without serious competition.

On the other hand, if we’re talking about purely civilian infrastructure, just consider that, at this very moment, Congress is dilly-dallying while the crucial Highway Trust Fund that keeps American roads and interstates in shape is “heading for a cliff” and projected to go bankrupt in August.  This from the country that once turned the car into a poetic symbol of freedom.  Meanwhile, the nation’s overall infrastructure, from levees and dams to wastewater and aviation, now regularly gets a grade of D+ from the American Society of Civil Engineers.

As a rising power in the nineteenth century, the US moved toward global status on the basis of an ambitious program of canal building and then of government-sponsored transcontinental railroads.  Jump a century and a half and the country that, until recently, was being called the planet’s “sole superpower” has yet to build a single mile of high-speed rail.  Not one.  Even a prospective line between Los Angeles and San Francisco, which looked like it might be constructed, is now blocked coming and going.

If, however, you happen to be looking for a twenty-first century rising power that has put its money on the American (rail)road to success, check out China.  When Chinese state expenditures are discussed in the US, the American concern is always military spending (definitely on the rise), but China’s domestic spending on high-speed rail is staggering.  As of 2012, the country already had a 10,000-kilometer network, including the longest line in the world, and it’s expected to hit 15,000 kilometers by the end of 2015, not to speak of — as Pepe Escobar notes today (Monday) — high-speed “silk roads” that could, in the end, reach across Eurasia.  Someday, if Chinese engineering dreamers are to be believed, there might even be a two-day 8,000-mile line from Beijing via the longest underwater tunnel ever built through Canada to the United States.

If you want a measure of rise and decline, look no further than this comparison between US and Chinese infrastructural build-ups, between, that is, Washington’s global military-first strategy and Beijing’s civilian-first one meant to create a transport and communications system that could economically tie significant parts of the world to that country for decades to come.  Rising… falling… Perhaps as Escobar, that peripatetic traveler across the realms he likes to call Pipelineistan, suggests in his latest piece, we really are heading for a new Eurasian Century.

http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2014/05/20/363484/us-military-spending-and-our-bullet-trains-to-nowhere/

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right sector

‘Al Qaeda’ in Ukraine? For decades, the US has relied on local or imported terrorist paramilitaries to win their ‘proxy wars’. Ukraine’s Right Sector is just the latest.

The US military hasn’t actually been involved in an overt “war”, in the traditional sense of a conflict between two mostly equally matched adversaries, since the end of the Korean war in 1953. As Col. Fletcher Prouty points out in his book JFK:The CIA, Vietnam, and the Plot to Assassinate John F. Kennedy, US soldiers in Vietnam were mainly fighting against 1 million North Vietnamese villagers who were ‘deported’ to the South (by the US Navy) where, like any dispossessed people, they resorted to theft to survive. These were the bulk of the ‘Viet Cong’ that the US military raped, tortured, napalmed and shot en masse. Every other US military and/or CIA ‘adventure’ from the 1960s until today (and there have been many) has involved one of the following three approaches:

A) a short-lived ‘turkey shoot’ against an impotent ‘enemy’ (see Iraq “war” 1, Libya 2011).

B) a protracted direct “war” of colonial expansion waged against an indigenous, largely civilian, population who resist occupation and plunder of their land (see Iraq “war” 2).

C) a ‘proxy war’, where paramilitary groups (either local or imported) are funded, trained and armed by CIA and US military ‘advisers’ (too many to list, but see here for a list) and fight local resistance groups on behalf of the USA.

A complex combination of strategies B and C has also been used where invasion and occupation of a foreign country by US and British troops is justified as “fighting terrorists”, where the terrorists themselves are to some extent co-opted and used by US and British intelligence and military intelligence agents. On many occasions, attacks by the “terrorists” against the local government and population are in fact the work of American or British intelligence/military agents. Earlier this year for example, Afghan President Karzai publicly expressed his suspicions that bombings attributed to “the Taliban” were in fact the work of the US government:

The Washington Post quoted a senior Afghan presidential palace official as saying that President Karzai has provided a list of several attacks, in which he says Washington may have been involved, including the recent bloody assault on a Lebanese restaurant in Kabul, where over 20 people, including 13 foreigners, were killed.

The January 17 bombing and shooting attack on the restaurant was attributed to the Taliban militant group, though Karzai said it is one of the many attacks that may have been orchestrated by the United States in order to undermine Afghan government’s abilities in maintaining security and pave the way for keeping its soldiers in the country beyond 2014.

Since the 1950s option ‘C’ has been the favorite “war” strategy and the one employed most often by the US and British political and military ‘elite’. There are clear advantages to this strategy: less troops on the ground means less body bags coming home, and plausible deniability that the “war”, or any US military presence, is for “peace keeping” or “defending freedom and democracy”.

No one should be surprised therefore at the suggestion that recent events in Ukraine, in particular the massacre in Odessa, bear the hallmarks of a ‘proxy force’ being used by the Ukrainian ‘interim’ government on the advice of Western powers in an effort to wrest control of the future of Ukraine from the Russian government. That allegation has been explicitly made by eyewitnesses to the events outside and inside the Trade Unions building in Odessa on May 2nd.

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File photo shows a local branch of Bank of America.

“My assessment is that 90% of the value of the US dollar comes from the US military.”
— Former Assistant Housing Secretary Catherine Austin Fitts

For decades, America has used its armed strength to enforce the use of the dollar as the world’s reserve currency, effectively making the US military the armed wing of the international banking cartel (IBC). Since 1971 when President Richard Nixon stopped paying US debt obligations with gold, America has increasingly used its military might to prop up the value of the dollar and enforce a global financial structure whose primary beneficiary is the US itself, and whose central bank, the Federal Reserve, serves as the IBC’s supervisory authority.

Who or what is this IBC?  It consists of Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup and Wells Fargo along with Deutsche Bank, BNP and Barclays. Eight families reportedly control the IBC: the Goldman Sachs, Rockefellers, Lehmans, Kuhn Loebs, Rothschilds, Warburgs, Lazards and the Israel Moses Seifs.  Besides owning the US oil behemoths Exxon Mobil, Royal Dutch Shell, BP and Chevron Texaco, IBC member institutions are among the top ten shareholders of nearly every Fortune 500 company. While the IBC itself has no formal status, nevertheless its members are represented by an international body, the Financial Stability Board (FSB).  Organized as the Financial Security Forum in 1999 by G7 finance ministers and central bank governors, the FSB “seeks to give momentum to a broad-based multilateral agenda for strengthening financial systems and the stability of international financial markets.”

War is extremely profitable for the IBC, since not only do its members profit from financing arms sales to both sides during the conflicts that they themselves often initiate, but also from the post bellum reconstruction. In fact, the most powerful of the central banking institutions in the world, the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), was established in 1930 to oversee reparation payments imposed upon Germany by the Treaty of Versailles that ended the First World War. In addition to providing banking services for central banks worldwide, the BIS supervised the Bretton Woods international currency agreements from the Second World War until the early 1970s, when Nixon reneged on pledges to pay US debt obligations in gold. The BIS also works with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to expand the IBC-imposed debt-dependency cycle among the nations of the world.

The methodology for global financial domination is really quite simple: America imports more goods than it exports and therefore dollars flow out of the US and accumulate in the central banks of other countries. Since the US has refused to honor these obligations in gold, the central banks are forced to invest in US treasury bills, bonds and other US financial instruments that pay interest which is financed by the issuance of further debt. The result is a US-dominated global financial system dependent upon maintaining the value, or more correctly, minimizing the rate of depreciation, of the dollar, allowing the US to enjoy an extravagant consumer-based economy at the expense of the rest of the world.

Regarding the insidious US debt-domination process, Wall Street analyst Michael Hudson explains that “by running balance-of-payments deficits that it refuses to settle in gold, it has obliged foreign governments to invest their surplus dollar holdings in Treasury bills, that is, to relend their dollar inflows to the US Treasury.”   The system is somewhat self-perpetuating, for should a non-US central bank decide to divest its dollars, it would effectively sabotage the economy in its own country.   Of course, foreign central banks and financial institutions are well aware that by investing in US treasury securities, they will lose money since the Federal Reserve will only turn around and “print” more dollars, thus further diluting the value of their reserves. However, if these foreign institutions would fail to reinvest their dollars in more T-bills, the rate of depreciation of their dollar holdings would accelerate dramatically. Such awareness holds most governments in check, preventing wholesale dumping of dollars, which of course would bring the entire global system down, along with the IBC.

Hence, demand for US dollars and government and agency bonds continues even as [dollar] value falls. The losses on these holdings represent a tax paid to the ‘Empire’,” writes Catherine Austin Fitts, adding, “The fundamental system is as old as the hills. It is based on force.” Conversely, this ability of the IBC to call upon the US military, which incidentally consumes 40 percent of global military spending, whenever and wherever the cartel’s interests are threatened, results directly from the global dominance of the dollar. India-based scholar and social activist Rohini Hensm writes, “It is the dominance of the dollar that underpins US financial dominance as a whole as well as the apparently limitless spending power that allows it to keep hundreds of thousands of troops stationed all over the world.”   In short, dollar dominance allows the obscenely profligate spending to maintain the US military’s global presence, which in turn insures the continuing hegemony of the dollar.

Nevertheless, an increasing number of challenges to this dollar hegemony regime has arisen, some of which have necessitated suppression by the US military.  Iraq is a good case in point. In November of 2000, former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein announced to the world that Iraq would no longer accept dollars for petroleum transactions. Despite the declining value of the Euro, Saddam demanded payment for Iraqi oil in the troubled currency while declaring dollars to be “the currency of the enemy.” By 2002, Iraqi oil was being traded in Euros, effectively dumping the dollar. Former US President George W. Bush, who was a deputy of the IBC from the oil industry, used the 9/11 terrorist attacks as a convenient excuse to invade Iraq in March 2003, thus eliminating Saddam’s threat to dollar domination.

When former Libyan leader Muammar al-Qaddafi tried to establish a state-run central bank and trade petroleum in non-dollar currencies, the IBC tapped NATO to intervene. On March 19, 2011, a mere month after initial internal unrest, the Transitional National Council “rebels” announced they were establishing the Libyan Oil Company as the supervisory authority on oil production and policies, and designated the Central Bank of Benghazi as the authority for monetary policies.  That a local group of rebels one month into a rebellion would form a national oil company and designate a private central bank astounded Robert Wenzel of the Economic Policy Journal who remarked, “I have never before heard of a central bank being created in just a matter of weeks out of a popular uprising.” Confirming suspicions of IBC involvement, the US Treasury placed sanctions on Qaddafi’s National Oil Corporation, but assured the rebels, “Should National Oil Corporation subsidiaries or facilities come under different ownership and control, Treasury may consider authorizing dealings with such entities.”

Other countries have had enough of the IBC and its armed wing. Both Russia and China have expressed their distaste for the dollar status quo and US threats of sanctions or military force. On Thursday, Sept. 6, 2012, China announced that any nation in the world that wishes to buy, sell, or trade crude oil can do using the Chinese currency, not the American dollar. Following suit the next day, Russia announced that it would sell China all the crude oil it wanted but it would not accept US dollars. In addition, Russia has recently unveiled a payment system, called the PRO 100 Universal electronic card, designed to bypass the IBC should it again decide to block credit card services to Russian banks.  “There is little doubt in my mind but that Russia and China and no doubt many other countries around the world are getting angry as hell about the US abusing its foreign currency privilege,” wrote investment banker Jay Taylor.

Iran, of course, has long been targeted by the IBC for refusing to surrender to US-imposed sanctions and threats of military force. Iran had completely eliminated the use of US dollars for oil trading by December 2007 and inaugurated its Bourse (stock exchange) for trading petroleum in non-dollar currencies in February 2008, coinciding with the 29th anniversary of the victory of the Islamic Revolution. Additionally, the IBC has tried to cut off Iran from using SWIFT, Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunications, for international transactions. However, with the world’s second-largest gas reserves and third-largest oil reserves, Iran retains the potential to strike a major blow against US dollar hegemony.

The question is how can we put an end to this stranglehold on the global financial system by the IBC and its armed wing? Hensm gives us a simple, straightforward answer: “Destroy US dollar hegemony, and the ‘Empire’ will collapse.” If more nations join Iran, Russia and China, and opt out of the US dollar protection racket, then this evil “Empire” will surely collapse along with its armed wing.

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PT: SAVE UP TO 75% on OEM Replacement Auto Parts

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Pentagon eyes 10,000 troops for Afghanistan, or none

22 Jan 2014 The Pentagon has proposed leaving 10,000 troops in Afghanistan after 2014 but then draw down the number of troops to zero by the end of 2016, CBS News confirmed Wednesday. While White House officials have not publicly commented on the proposal, it is contingent on Afghan President Hamid Karzai signing the Bilateral Security Agreement, which has been a point of contention between the two countries, CBS News reports. The figure of 10,000 troops is around the minimum number officials say is required to protect the remaining diplomatic, military and intelligence personnel and installations CIA’s opium prodcution in the country, The New York Times reports.

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Heads up! The Nosey Parker of the planet, the US, wants to ‘help’ Russia with security – LOL! That’s to facilitate a false flag to embarrass Putin:

U.S. military says readying plans for Olympic security ‘assistance’

20 Jan 2014 The U.S. military said on Monday that air and naval assets, including two [war]ships in the Black Sea, would be made available if needed during the Sochi Winter Olympics in support of Russia, which faces militant threats to disrupt the Games. The Pentagon said U.S. military commanders were “conducting prudent planning and preparations” should American support be required during the Winter Olympics. “The United States has offered its full support to the Russian government as it conducts security preparations for the Winter Olympics,” Pentagon spokesman Rear Admiral John Kirby said in a statement.

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US Threatens to Revoke Afghan Aid Unless Karzai Okays Occupation

The December 31 ultimatum demanding Afghan President Hamid Karzai authorize an open-ended occupation or lose all US military support at the end of 2014 didn’t work, so now officials are trying a different tack.

“My judgment is no troops, no aid,” warned US Ambassador James Dobbins, who insisted that political support for humanitarian aid was entirely tied to the presence of occupation forces, and that if Karzai doesn’t sign off, the Afghan government will lose billions in aid.

US officials are playing up what a “disaster” the loss of aid would be for Afghanistan, while insisting that the everyday lives of Afghans is dramatically improved because of US largesse.

That claim seems unwarranted, and the Afghans are likely to see it the same way. While many in the Karzai government got rich off the corrupt contractor deals, Afghanistan is still a wreck 12+ years into the occupation, and most of the aid has notoriously gone into building projects Afghans didn’t need or want.

 

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The US military have reportedly proved that sarin gas production is going on among some Sunni salafists in Iraq, and via Turkey, can reach Syrian rebels.

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English: firing 152 mm howitzer D-20 belong to...

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‘The US military is preparing a massive military campaign against Iran, sending thousands of American troops, warships and weaponry to Israel.

An unnamed source said the military deployment of US anti-missile ships and accompanying support personnel will occur in January and later this spring, Global Research reported. Commander of the US Third Air Force based in Germany Lt.-Gen Frank Gorenc said it is not just an “exercise,” but a “deployment,” The Jerusalem Post said.’

Read more: ‘US Deploys Troops in Israel for Iran War’

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The UK and US militaries have been developing new biological weapons which are capable of terminating certain races, a Middle East expert tells Press TV.

“They (the US and UK military establishments) even developed a black-only bomb that targeted the Afro gene. There is even talk now that there may be one for the Chinese gene,” Peter Eyre, a Middle East consultant, said in a recent interview with Press TV.

Eyre described the sinister project as “absolutely insane,” adding the work on such weaponry initially started in former Rhodesia [modern day Zimbabwe] by the UK government, but was then transferred to South Africa [by then UK Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher] when the former British colony declared independence.

The analyst went on to say that the US and UK have not only amassed a huge stockpile of biological and chemical weapons but also provided dictatorial regimes around the world to use and develop such lethal weapons.

CONTINUED HERE

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The American military presence in the world is global, blogger and author Tom Engelhardt told RT. “The Pentagon usually admits yearly to about 800 military bases or sites from macro to micro, but in their account they do not include anything in war zones,” he said. “It is particularly strange because bases traditionally more or less were the way you kept colonies, but for us the bases are actually the thing.” “The US military now has a kind of secret military inside it and those are the special operations forces which have been incredibly beefed up and taken over certain activities that once were more CIA-type activities in the Bush and now Obama period… They are stationed now in 75 countries,” added Engelhardt. “There are only 192 countries in the UN — I think that is the latest figure — so you are talking about somewhere upwards of 40 percent just for special operations forces. It is a lot.”

VIDEO: US Imperial Military Presence Unprecedented.

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We have withheld putting out this kind of information on the Gulf oil spill for a variety of reasons, but there is now enough evidence for us to put together a fairly clear picture of what really happened, what may result and to warn people who live in the area.

Our country has been in a state of national emergency since September 11, 2001, which means that martial law (i.e. military rule) can be declared by the President at any time, for any reason – large, or small. If martial law is implemented, evacuees will lose their ability to determine when and where they will move and for how long, since the normal protections of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights will have been suspended. To put it bluntly, a scenario in which evacuees are forced to live in relocation centers for an unspecified length of time is not unlikely.

THE SITUATION

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