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Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity
By Daniel McAdams
December 23, 2014
It will be a miserable Christmas for the overseas victims of US interventions this year. Though "regime change" proponents talk of bringing freedom and democracy to the countries they target, the end result is quite the opposite: the rise of extremism, famine, ethnic cleansing, and economic destruction are what the US government has left behind in places like Iraq, Syria, and Ukraine.
The neoconservatives who pushed for war in Iraq are incapable of self-reflection, but the numbers do not lie. For the first time in more than 1,000 years, reports the Washington Post today, "the plains of Nineveh and its provincial capital of Mosul have been virtually emptied of Christians." Where there had been religious and cultural diversity for centuries, the destruction of Iraqi society brought about by US intervention has left only the most hardened of extremists to terrorize what is left of the population. Already six in ten Christians have fled Iraq, leaving churches empty and a way of life that dates to the time of Christ a distant memory.
Father Miyassir al-Mokhlasee of Baghdad's St. George’s Chaldean Catholic Church is struggling to keep his flock, as every Christian who is able is fleeing. “We believe that God wants us here for diversity in the region," Fr. Mokhlasee said. “We are becoming fewer in number... We ask God that we can keep our churches, keep our country," he added in an Advent sermon.
At least in the short term, however, his prayers may not be answered.
Many Americans, particularly those who rely on the mainstream media for information, will believe that the rise of Christian-killing ISIS and al-Qaeda in Iraq is the result of the US military's departure from Iraq rather than from the US invasion of Iraq. Simple logic argues the opposite: if even the Washington Post admits that Christians thrived in Iraq until the 2003 invasion, how can it be argued that the invasion was not responsible for the decimation of Christianity in Iraq?
Those on the receiving end of the US invasion have a much clearer view of cause and effect. As the Post article tells us:
One of Iraq’s most senior Christian religious figures, Chaldean Catholic Patriarch Louis Sako, has accused the United States of being 'indirectly responsible' for the exodus of one of the world’s most ancient Christian communities, pointing to the chaos caused by the 2003 invasion.
Christmas will likewise be a somber celebration for the estimated 500,000 Ukrainians who were forced to flee their homes as the US-backed regime in Kiev destroyed much of eastern Ukraine. Again it is a question of cause and effect. The US mainstream media will blame the separatist regions of eastern Ukraine for the violence, but will ignore the precipitating factor: the US-backed coup in Kiev that ousted an elected government and put into power an unelected regime hostile to the eastern provinces of that country.
Even founder and CEO of Stratfor (the "Shadow CIA") George Friedman -- a man not given to flights of fancy -- described the events in Ukraine earlier this year as, "the most blatant coup in history.” According to Friedman, part of the reason for US backing of the Ukraine coup was as retaliation for Russian involvement in Syria. It was half a year prior to the outbreak of unrest in Ukraine that Russia had brokered a deal that saw Syrian President Assad give up his chemical weapons to avoid an American attack. Was the destabilization of Ukraine the neoconservative retaliation for Putin's thwarting their plans for a US invasion of Syria?
Many residents of eastern Ukraine will be spending Christmas (which falls on January 7 according to the Orthodox calendar) underground in Soviet-era bomb shelters. They will have neither running water, sanitary facilities, nor privacy. Their homes have been destroyed by the US-backed regime in Kiev.
The UK Telegraph describes what happened to some of the war's most recent victims, when an early "Christmas present" from Kiev destroyed their homes:
'It was just a massive boom, the windows cracked, and we threw ourselves on the floor. We know what to do,' the 53-year-old said, looking out over the stricken courtyard below the fourth-storey flat.
The December 8 attack ripped apart a neighbouring block of flats, killed six people, and knocked out the heating station that keeps the neighbourhood warm. In the grim context of the past few months in eastern Ukraine, it was a routine tragedy.
In Syria, where the US has backed Islamist extremists in a three-year effort to overthrow the secular Assad regime, Christianity has also been nearly eliminated. In Aleppo, home to one of Syria's largest pre-war Christian populations, citizens are split between a government-controlled sector and a rebel-held sector in the east. A few Christians remain in the government-held areas where, according to AFP:
Families from government-controlled districts gather every Sunday evening in the church, which is brightly lit thanks to its generator, a major draw in a city where frequent power cuts plunge homes into darkness.
The few Christians that remain in Syria are determined to maintain a culture that goes back to the time of Christ:
Father Imad Daher of the Latin church of Saint Francis said Christians are preparing to put up their Christmas trees.
'We will celebrate Christmas, even if our numbers have dwindled. We will celebrate with a mass for peace,' he said.
These are only some of the victims of an interventionist US foreign policy. American Christians who prepare to celebrate the birth of Christ the King should pause and reflect on what is being done in their name overseas. If they believe they are promoting Christian values overseas with their support for US global interventionism, they might want to ask some of their co-religionists who are much closer to the falling bombs and whirling machetes of the head-choppers. Hopefully American Christians will demand an end to the tyranny of the neoconservatives and "humanitarian" interventionists who dominate US foreign policy. Theirs is the regime that truly needs to be changed.
Copyright © 2014 by RonPaul Institute.
US Boosts Foreign Military Aid to Promote Global Clout [Strategic Culture Foundation] Apr 15, 2013
Jews and U.S. Wars [Hawaii Political Info] (Collection of articles)
By Greg Hunter’s USAWatchdog.com
December 17, 2014
Former Assistant Treasury Secretary Dr. Paul Craig Roberts thinks the only thing that explains the plunge in the Russian ruble is that it is being attacked by America. Roberts contends, “It is not a currency crash in the sense there are no economic reasons for the ruble’s fall. Unlike the United States, which has a massive trade deficit, and if the currency markets were not rigged, the dollar would be collapsing, the Russian economy has a trade surplus. Therefore, there is no pressure on its currency for economic conditions.” Dr. Roberts goes on to say, “This is not some independent action of market forces. So, it’s either hedge funds, currency speculators like Soros, or it’s an Act of War on behalf of the United States government by the Federal Reserve or the Exchange Stabilization Fund. . . or possibly both hedge funds working with the federal government.”
Manipulating the markets, any market, is supposed to be illegal, but don’t count on the bankers going to jail. Dr. Roberts, who has a PhD in economics, thinks, “The big banks, the big Wall Street money, are essentially agents of the government. This is why they don’t get prosecuted. This is why they can break all kinds of laws, commit felonies and settle with a fine. This is what we’ve been watching in the financial arena. When these financial gangsters are caught, instead of being indicted and put on trial, they pay money.”
The FBI says North Korea is behind the Sony Pictures attack because of a comedy that was about to be released about their present leader. Americans now believe North Korea is behind the attack. But how believable is the FBI, or any news of this nature coming from our mainstream media?
Published on Dec 19, 2014
A member of the public witnessed a poster and City and County employees at the Windward Satellite City Hall promoting the signing of the Hawaii Chamber of Commerce's petition "Keep Hawaii's Heroes." The HCoC petition opposes the Department of Defense's proposal to downsize the Army by 19,800 on Oahu: 16,000 at Schofield Barracks and 3,800 at Fort Shafter. The HCoC is pushing the petition to keep Oahu soldiers at their present numbers primarily because they see some businesses taking a cut in revenue if the number of Oahu soldiers is reduced. They also say that it will be bad for Hawaii economically, but with little to no facts backing up that opinion.
In line with the June 2014 DoD announcement of cutting 130,000 active duty Army worldwide, the Army has also proposed downsizing the number of soldiers in 18 other states, not just on Oahu. Not affected are Oahu Marines, Navy and Air Force, which have much better support and training and considerably more efficient fighting forces.
The witness who saw the Hawaii Chamber of Commerce posters and support at the Windward Satellite City Hall alerted members of the Oahu Council for Army Downsizing (OC4AD). The OC4AD takes the opposite position of the HCoC: namely, "Better Army, Mo' Bettah Hawaii," which puts a streamlined, more efficient Army, and soldiers well-being first.
Col. (retired) AL Frenzel of OC4AD went to the Pearlridge Satellite City Hall on Thursday (yesterday) and found the Hawaii Chamber of Commerce's agenda being promoted at the city and county facility on posters and by city and county personnel.
Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell (nonpartisan office, but he's a Democrat), Governor David Ige (D), Colleen Hanabusa (D) and newly elected Congressman Mark Takai (D) have publicly opposed the DoD proposal to restructure Oahu soldiers.
Would the City and County have allowed the Hawaii CoC opposition, OC4AD, to do the same gathering of support on city property with city employees on the same one-sided basis? What do you think?
See what's going on at the satellite offices for yourself.
The Independent (U.K.)
By Robert Fisk
Thank God for Noam Chomsky. Not for his lifetime of eviscerating assaults on our political hypocrisy, but for his linguistics. Long before I knew him, undergraduate Fisk laboured at his university linguistics course, where Chomsky’s work first alerted me to the pernicious use of language. Hence I condemn at once the vile semantics of the Pentagon and the CIA. Not just that old, wolfish, obscene phrase “collateral damage”, but the language of torture.
Or, as the lads who torture on our behalf call it, “enhanced interrogation techniques”. Let’s take a closer look at that. “Enhanced” is a word of improvement. It suggests something better, more learned, even less costly. For example, “enhanced medicine” would presumably involve a more streamlined way of improving your health. Just as “enhanced schooling” would suggest a more worthy education for a child. “Interrogation” at least gives a hint of what this is all about. Asking questions and getting – or not getting – a reply. But “techniques” beats the lot. A technique is a technical skill, is it not? Usually, so my dictionary tells me, in artistic work.
So the “interrogators” have special skills – which implies training, learnt work, application, the product of brains. Which I suppose, in a way, is what torture is all about. It’s just not the way I would normally describe the process of slamming people into walls, half-drowning them in water and ramming hummus up their rectums. But in case that’s a bit too graphic, the US press lads and lasses have got round it in a familiar form. The whole process of “enhanced interrogation techniques” is now called “EIT”. Like WMD – another whopper in our political vocabulary – the whole filthy business is wrapped up in a three-letter abbreviation.
Hawaii Political Info introduction: A flight attendant says Korean Air executive Heather Cho made him kneel in apology after he served her macadamia nuts in a bag instead of on a dish. Then, still in a temper, she ordered the plane to return to the gate at New York's John F. Kennedy Airport and booted him off the plane.
Ms. Cho denies making him kneel.
Cho was fired over the incident. She has made a public apology and her father, who is KAL chairman, has publicly apologized for not doing a better job of raising his daughter.
December 15, 2014
Former Korean Air executive Heather Cho apologizes for the nut incident. Now the flight attendant she allegedly tormented is speaking out.
The flight attendant who was famously booted off a Korean Air flight after a tyrannical now-former airline executive was improperly served nuts is speaking out about the incident — and unloading on the family-run airline.
Senior flight attendant Park Chang-jin told South Korea’s KBS television network the Korean Air executive — Heather Cho, daughter of Korean Air chairman Cho Yang-ho — humiliated him after she was offered macadamia nuts in a bag instead of a plate as the plane was about to depart New York’s JFK Airport for Seoul.
Chinese Kids Driving Supercars: Inside the Secret Southern California Meet-Up [YouTube, 3 min 12 sec] Nov 18, 2014
Importance, truth and facts are not the primary goal of history textbooks. Similar to textbooks in other countries, loyalty to our country's government and belief in its superiority and goodness is the ultimate goal.
By Paul Rosenberg
November 28, 2014
As much as I love history now, I found it a confused jumble when I was in school. I was able to memorize the dates and events (for whatever that was worth), but I could find no depth to anything I was taught: it had no meaning, no purpose, no clarity.
I spent decades digging through books and museums before I located the problem, which is this: The history you were taught in school wasn’t exactly a lie, but it was selectively presented. Useful facts were presented to you and less useful facts were excluded.
The big question, of course, is this: Who decided what was “useful”?
The political class breathed a sigh of relief Saturday when the US Senate averted a government shutdown by passing the $1.1 trillion omnibus spending bill. This year’s omnibus resembles omnibuses of Christmas past in that it was drafted in secret, was full of special interest deals and disguised spending increases, and was voted on before most members could read it.
The debate over the omnibus may have made for entertaining political theater, but the outcome was never in doubt. Most House and Senate members are so terrified of another government shutdown that they would rather vote for a 1,774-page bill they have not read than risk even a one- or two-day government shutdown.
Those who voted for the omnibus to avoid a shutdown fail to grasp that the consequences of blindly expanding government are far worse than the consequences of a temporary government shutdown. A short or even long term government shutdown is a small price to pay to avoid an economic calamity caused by Congress’ failure to reduce spending and debt.
The political class’ shutdown phobia is particularly puzzling because a shutdown only closes 20 percent of the federal government. As the American people learned during the government shutdown of 2013, the country can survive with 20 percent less government.
Instead of panicking over a limited shutdown, a true pro-liberty Congress would be eagerly drawing up plans to permanently close most of the federal government, starting with the Federal Reserve. The Federal Reserve’s inflationary policies not only degrade the average American’s standard of living, they also allow Congress to run up huge deficits. Congress should take the first step toward restoring a sound monetary policy by passing the Audit the Fed bill, so the American people can finally learn the truth about the Fed’s operations.
Second on the chopping block should be the Internal Revenue Service. The federal government is perfectly capable of performing its constitutional functions without imposing a tyrannical income tax system on the American people.
America’s militaristic foreign policy should certainly be high on the shutdown list. The troops should be brought home, all foreign aid should be ended, and America should pursue a policy of peace and free trade with all nations. Ending the foreign policy of hyper-interventionism that causes so many to resent and even hate America will increase our national security.
All programs that spy on or otherwise interfere with the private lives of American citizens should be shut down. This means no more TSA, NSA, or CIA, as well as an end to all federal programs that promote police militarization. The unconstitutional war on drugs should also end, along with the war on raw milk.
All forms of welfare should be shut down, starting with those welfare programs that benefit the wealthy and the politically well connected. Corporate welfare, including welfare for the military-industrial complex that masquerades as “defense spending,” should be first on the chopping block. Welfare for those with lower incomes could be more slowly phased out to protect those who have become dependent on those programs.
The Department of Education should be permanently padlocked. This would free American schoolchildren from the dumbed-down education imposed by Common Core and No Child Left Behind. Of course, Obamacare, and similar programs, must be shut down so we can finally have free-market health care.
Congress could not have picked a worse Christmas gift for the American people than the 1,774-page omnibus spending bill. Unfortunately, we cannot return this gift. But hopefully someday Congress will give us the gift of peace, prosperity, and liberty by shutting down the welfare-warfare state.
- US Military Training Overseas: Vast and Under-Reported Apr 16, 2013
- The Coming Non-Intervention Revolution Apr 16, 2013
- The Interventionist Failures and How To Fix Them Apr 17, 2013
- Scenes From the Ron Paul Institute Press Conference Apr 22, 2013
- Congress Exploits Our Fears to Take Our Liberty Apr 22, 2013