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Fake News, Flake News And The Rise of The Electronic Town Crier

April 8, 2017 3:04 pm

What does it say about the current relationship between israel and Russia when Russia Insider publishes an article that can barely hold its disgust at Israel?

Pentagon Gave Israel Front Row Seats to US Missile Strikes in Syria:

Altright commentary on social media is also pissed and some are blaming Kushner for elbowing Bannon out of the way and lobbying Trump to strike Syria, on the behest of israel.  They're also livid that he's in deep with Soros.  I've also seen articles that say that it was an Ivanka "moved" by pictures of Syrian child victims of chemical attacks that greatly influenced Trump's final decision - here too, many are now pointing the finger at Ivanka and calling her an elitist and a globalist and not an American-firster.  I've even seen several commentators literally describing Trump's daughter like this: "Ivanka = Israel".  Also, popular Youtube Altrighters are urging Trump to "drop the princess". gleefully covered the Altright freakout post Syria strike here.

Who knows the veracity of some of these stories but one thing is for sure: israel is in the picture.  Of course, wherever there is warmongering in DC and war in the mideast, israel is right there smiling with shiny yellow teeth.

April 8, 2017 1:50 pm

So yesterday Russia responded to Trump's strikes on Syria, rather swiftly too, I thought.  Zerohedge has a decent summation of it here:

Putin Responds: Syria Strikes "Cripple US-Russia Relations"; Deploys Missile Warship To Syria:

(Excerpt from above link)

In immediate response, Moscow suspended its memorandum of understanding on flight safety in Syria with the US following the missile strike, calling the attack “a demonstration of force.”

UPDATED NEWS:  Putin will now also be sending S-400s to double-fortify and ring the Syrian skies - the S-400 are expected to arrive "shortly".  I am gleaning from this, combined with the suspension of 'memorandum... on flight safety', two clear Putin messages directed at Trump:

1-  You're on your own now if you conduct aerial strikes in Syrian skies

2-  You'll have to go thru me if you want regime change in Syria

The ball is now in Trump's court.

April 7, 2017 7:22 pm

Funny, I posted a condensed Youtube version of the movie 'Wag The Dog' upthread a couple of days ago, and here now is its article accompaniment from Robert Parry, published today:

Trump’s ‘Wag the Dog’ Moment

Just two days after news broke of an alleged poison-gas attack in northern Syria, President Trump brushed aside advice from some U.S. intelligence analysts doubting the Syrian regime’s guilt and launched a lethal retaliatory missile strike against a Syrian airfield.

Trump immediately won plaudits from Official Washington, especially from neoconservatives who have been trying to wrestle control of his foreign policy away from his nationalist and personal advisers since the days after his surprise victory on Nov. 8.

There is also an internal dispute over the intelligence. On Thursday night, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said the U.S. intelligence community assessed with a “high degree of confidence” that the Syrian government had dropped a poison gas bomb on civilians in Idlib province.

But a number of intelligence sources have made contradictory assessments, saying the preponderance of evidence suggests that Al Qaeda-affiliated rebels were at fault, either by orchestrating an intentional release of a chemical agent as a provocation or by possessing containers of poison gas that ruptured during a conventional bombing raid.

One intelligence source told me that the most likely scenario was a staged event by the rebels intended to force Trump to reverse a policy, announced only days earlier, that the U.S. government would no longer seek “regime change” in Syria and would focus on attacking the common enemy, Islamic terror groups that represent the core of the rebel forces.

The source said the Trump national security team split between the President’s close personal advisers, such as nationalist firebrand Steve Bannon and son-in-law Jared Kushner, on one side and old-line neocons who have regrouped under National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster, an Army general who was a protégé of neocon favorite Gen. David Petraeus.

White House Infighting

In this telling, the earlier ouster of retired Gen. Michael Flynn as national security adviser and this week’s removal of Bannon from the National Security Council were key steps in the reassertion of neocon influence inside the Trump presidency. The strange personalities and ideological extremism of Flynn and Bannon made their ousters easier, but they were obstacles that the neocons wanted removed.

Though Bannon and Kushner are often presented as rivals, the source said, they shared the belief that Trump should tell the truth about Syria, revealing the Obama administration’s CIA analysis that a fatal sarin gas attack in 2013 was a “false-flag” operation intended to sucker President Obama into fully joining the Syrian war on the side of the rebels — and the intelligence analysts’ similar beliefs about Tuesday’s incident.

Instead, Trump went along with the idea of embracing the initial rush to judgment blaming Assad for the Idlib poison-gas event. The source added that Trump saw Thursday night’s missile assault as a way to change the conversation in Washington, where his administration has been under fierce attack from Democrats claiming that his election resulted from a Russian covert operation.

If changing the narrative was Trump’s goal, it achieved some initial success with several of Trump’s fiercest neocon critics, such as neocon Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham, praising the missile strike, as did Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The neocons and Israel have long sought “regime change” in Damascus even if the ouster of Assad might lead to a victory by Islamic extremists associated with Al Qaeda and/or the Islamic State.

Wagging the Dog

Trump employing a “wag the dog” strategy, in which he highlights his leadership on an international crisis to divert attention from domestic political problems, is reminiscent of President Bill Clinton’s decision to attack Serbia in 1999 as impeachment clouds were building around his sexual relationship with intern Monica Lewinsky.

Trump’s advisers, in briefing the press on Thursday night, went to great lengths to highlight Trump’s compassion toward the victims of the poison gas and his decisiveness in bombing Assad’s military in contrast to Obama’s willingness to allow the intelligence community to conduct a serious review of the evidence surrounding the 2013 sarin-gas case.

Ultimately, Obama listened to his intelligence advisers who told him there was no “slam-dunk” evidence implicating Assad’s regime and he pulled back from a military strike at the last minute – while publicly maintaining the fiction that the U.S. government was certain of Assad’s guilt.

In both cases – 2013 and 2017 – there were strong reasons to doubt Assad’s responsibility. In 2013, he had just invited United Nations inspectors into Syria to investigate cases of alleged rebel use of chemical weapons and thus it made no sense that he would launch a sarin attack in the Damascus suburbs, guaranteeing that the U.N. inspectors would be diverted to that case.

Similarly, now, Assad’s military has gained a decisive advantage over the rebels and he had just scored a major diplomatic victory with the Trump administration’s announcement that the U.S. was no longer seeking “regime change” in Syria. The savvy Assad would know that a chemical weapon attack now would likely result in U.S. retaliation and jeopardize the gains that his military has achieved with Russian and Iranian help.

The counter-argument to this logic – made by The New York Times and other neocon-oriented news outlets – essentially maintains that Assad is a crazed barbarian who was testing out his newfound position of strength by baiting President Trump. Of course, if that were the case, it would have made sense that Assad would have boasted of his act, rather than deny it.

But logic and respect for facts no longer prevail inside Official Washington, nor inside the mainstream U.S. news media.

Intelligence Uprising

Alarm within the U.S. intelligence community about Trump’s hasty decision to attack Syria reverberated from the Middle East back to Washington, where former CIA officer Philip Giraldi reported hearing from his intelligence contacts in the field that they were shocked at how the new poison-gas story was being distorted by Trump and the mainstream U.S. news media.

Giraldi told Scott Horton’s Webcast: “I’m hearing from sources on the ground in the Middle East, people who are intimately familiar with the intelligence that is available who are saying that the essential narrative that we’re all hearing about the Syrian government or the Russians using chemical weapons on innocent civilians is a sham.”

Giraldi said his sources were more in line with an analysis postulating an accidental release of the poison gas after an Al Qaeda arms depot was hit by a Russian airstrike.

“The intelligence confirms pretty much the account that the Russians have been giving … which is that they hit a warehouse where the rebels – now these are rebels that are, of course, connected with Al Qaeda – where the rebels were storing chemicals of their own and it basically caused an explosion that resulted in the casualties. Apparently the intelligence on this is very clear.”

Giraldi said the anger within the intelligence community over the distortion of intelligence to justify Trump’s military retaliation was so great that some covert officers were considering going public.

“People in both the agency [the CIA] and in the military who are aware of the intelligence are freaking out about this because essentially Trump completely misrepresented what he already should have known – but maybe he didn’t – and they’re afraid that this is moving toward a situation that could easily turn into an armed conflict,” Giraldi said before Thursday night’s missile strike. “They are astonished by how this is being played by the administration and by the U.S. media.”

One-Sided Coverage

The mainstream U.S. media has presented the current crisis with the same profound neocon bias that has infected the coverage of Syria and the larger Middle East for decades. For instance, The New York Times on Friday published a lead story by Michael R. Gordon and Michael D. Shear that treated the Syrian government’s responsibility for the poison-gas incident as flat-fact. The lengthy story did not even deign to include the denials from Syria and Russia that they were responsible for any intentional deployment of poison gas.

The article also fit with Trump’s desire that he be portrayed as a decisive and forceful leader. He is depicted as presiding over intense deliberations of war or peace and displaying a deep humanitarianism regarding the poison-gas victims, one of the rare moments when the Times, which has become a reliable neocon propaganda sheet, has written anything favorable about Trump at all.

According to Syrian reports on Friday, the U.S. attack killed 13 people, including five soldiers at the airbase.

Gordon, whose service to the neocon cause is notorious, was the lead author with Judith Miller of the Times’ bogus “aluminum tube” story in 2002 which falsely claimed that Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein was reconstituting a nuclear-weapons program, an article that was then cited by President George W. Bush’s aides as a key argument for invading Iraq in 2003.

Regarding this week’s events, Trump’s desperation to reverse his negative media coverage and the dubious evidence blaming Assad for the Idlib incident could fit with the “Wag the Dog” movie from 1997 in which an embattled president creates a phony foreign crisis in Albania.

In the movie, the White House operation is a cynical psychological operation to convince the American people that innocent Albanian children, including an attractive girl carrying a cat, are in danger when, In reality, the girl was an actor posing before a green screen that allowed scenes of fiery ruins to be inserted as background.

Today, because Trump and his administration are now committed to convincing Americans that Assad really was responsible for Tuesday’s poison-gas tragedy, the prospects for a full and open investigation are effectively ended. We may never know if there is truth to those allegations or whether we are being manipulated by another “wag the dog” psyop.

April 8, 2017 6:55 am

Here's the ever popular Syriagirlpartisan giving her two cents worth - though I have to say, for me, her conclusion is a tad too dramatic.  The 'right' ducks are nowhere near lined up for an outbreak of WW3.  Fighting ISIS or the Syrian government will not produce a WW3, but a battle to liberate the Golan Heights from evil zionist israelis probably will:

April 7, 2017 8:09 pm

Probably the most dramatic speaker at the UN session on USA/Syria today was the Bolivian Ambassador, Sacha Llorenti, who'd actually called for the emergency meeting himself.  What he had to say was an indictment of USA's international lawlessness, with our Nikki Haley avoiding making eye-contact with anyone in the room and just (pretending to be?) reading from her notes for much of his speech.  FoxNews spun her attitude with the headline: "Haley forces Bolivia to defend Assad 'atrocities' in 'public view' at UN session".  I didn't bother reading the article, of course, cuz I much preferred to see the video for myself and make thus my own judgement.

April 8, 2017 6:42 am

So Trump only became president yesterday after his illegal strike on Syria?!  Did CNN miss Trump's inauguration just this past January or what?!  Evidently, in their eyes, a real president is he who wantonly spills blood in faraway lands that don't threaten our security.

The fake left, or 'corpo left, has seriously lost the plot, to the point of criminality.

April 7, 2017 4:31 pm

Good old Jimmy Dore on the case:

April 8, 2017 6:35 am

The MSM liberals, you know, the ones who get paid 20 million dollars per year to tell blatant Establishment lies, the ones with too much Botox and girlie pancake slapped on their faces, well, they're suddenly beside themselves with glee and praise for Trump now that he's killed some Syrians for no reason whatsoever.  Take a look at this classic liberal prostration from yesterday:

April 7, 2017 8:46 pm

And what of the target of the strike?  Destroying the airbase has little to no consequence on the ongoing advance of the Syrian army - destroying it does not change the facts on the ground against Bashar at all.  So why did the war architects pick this site specifically? 

Well, the airbase that got Tomahawked is actually the very same one that launched Syrian jets chasing and shooting down an israeli F-35 a couple of weeks ago.  Not since 1973 had the Syrian Air Force dared to respond to israeli air aggression, let alone chase israeli jets out of Syrian skies and shoot one down over the Jordan Valley. 

Is it just coincidence that the very same airbase was specifically targeted?  I'll let you decide.

April 8, 2017 5:20 am

So... the Tomahawk strike appears to have caused anger and division inside Trump's support base.  Now we have the Bannon brigade versus the Kushner Brigade, with many Trump supporters mad as hell and accusing Kushner of inciting Trump to strike Syria while populist Bannon was against this idea.  The Bannon brigade were slamming Kushner, calling him a 'Democrat' and a 'cuck'.  Kushner may indeed be those things but if you ask me, he's first and foremost and currently the MOST IMPORTANT MOSSAD ASSET IN THE USA.  The angry Trump mob battled it out fiercely on social media, with  #firekushner becoming the most popular hashtag on Twitter for the day.

Bannon Lost to Kushner in Syria Strike:

#FireKushner Takes Over Twitter

April 7, 2017 7:33 pm

Terrorist caption: 'Thank you'.

April 7, 2017 9:54 pm

And here's our Nikki Haley at the UN today, if you can handle the brute lies and sickening sanctimony:

April 7, 2017 6:51 pm

Many theories and reasons and wonked out opinions about the US/Syria strike are flying around the net and TV debate shows tonight (Levant time) - it's a crazy, crazy storm of mish-mash information out there, with still much fog and forest debris flying past everyone's face.  After so many hours of such high-pitched political noise, I enjoyed The Duran's simple, minimalist take on the whys and wherefores of the strike:

10 reasons why Trump illegally attacked Syria:

April 7, 2017 9:43 pm

I thought Vladimir Safronkov, Russia's UN Deputy Ambassador's speech was pretty powerful too:

April 7, 2017 3:40 pm
A Message from War Veteran Angelo John Gage: