Nel's New Day

November 28, 2017

WaPo Outs O’Keefe, DDT Hides

A characteristic of fascism is to destroy a free press, and Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) has obsessed with getting rid of the First Amendment through his term “fake news” for media outlets except Fox since he went on the campaign trail. The greatest fake news, however, comes from the far right, for example James O’Keefe, head of the falsely named Project Veritas, that led the destruction of ACORN and the smearing of Planned Parenthood which have helped hundreds of millions of people.

The latest destructive attempt from O’Keefe was designed to protect alleged pedophile Roy Moore and directed at the Washington Post.  Jaime T. Phillips, 41, told one of the newspaper’s reporters that Moore helped her get an abortion after he made her pregnant when she was 15. In her meetings with different reporters, she repeatedly asked them to promise her that her story would keep Moore from being elected.

Professional journalists, however, tend to check out stories before they are published, and these reporters looked into the information that she gave them. Phillips said she had lived in Alabama for only one summer and decided to go public after she saw the news while she worked at NFM Lending in Westchester (NJ). But her cellphone had an Alabama prefix, and NFM has no offices in Westchester County. Phillips used a Georgia driver’s license when she was asked for identification. The reporter asked Phillips about a web GoFundMe site that stated:

“I’m moving to New York! I’ve accepted a job to work in the conservative media movement to combat the lies and deceipt of the liberal MSM. I’ll be using my skills as a researcher and fact-checker to help our movement. I was laid off from my mortgage job a few months ago and came across the opportunity to change my career path.”

Phillips said that a job with the Daily Caller had fallen through and that her interviewer there was Kathy Johnson. The Daily Caller’s executive editor, Paul Conner, said that no one by that name works there and that no other top editors had interviewed her. (Below: WaPo reporter Stephanie McCrummen, left, interviews Jaime Phillips. Credit Dalton Bennett/The Washington Post) 

The GoFundMe site has been erased, and reporters saw her going to the New York offices of the organization that sets up “stings” for false cover stories and doctored videos to lie about different groups.

Project Veritas had posted a request on its Facebook page in March for twelve “undercover reporters,” and a posting for the “journalist” job warned that the job “is not a role for the faint of heart.” The job’s listed goal: “To adopt an alias persona, gain access to an identified person of interest and persuade that person to reveal information.” Required tasks include “Learning a script,” “Preparing a background story to support your role,” “Gaining an appointment or access to the target of the investigation,” and “Operating concealed recording equipment.”

Staff at Project Veritas are involved a variety of criminal charges. Mississippi and Utah stripped the group of a license to raise money in those states because it failed to disclose O’Keefe’s conviction on state applications. A Veritas employee, former television producer Robert J. Halderman, was sentenced to six months in jail in 2010 after he was accused of trying to blackmail late-night host David Letterman. O’Keefe has pleaded guilty to entering a government office under false pretenses in an attempt to bug then-Sen. Mary Landrieu’s (D-LA) congressional office, tried to lure a female CNN reporter onto a boat filled with sex toys and seduce the reporter in a “sting,” and was forced to pay a former video target $100,000. DDT’s campaign used O’Keefe’s highly edited videos in a false claim that the election was rigged against DDT. (James O’Keefe, left)

The Trump Foundation donated $10,000 to Project Veritas.

O’Keefe has admitted to Phillips’ scam, saying that the “investigative journalist” had her “cover blown.” Yesterday, he released a video “inside the Washington Post” with WaPo employees talking about how the editorial section opposes DDT and how DDT is good for business. No news there.

False stories about Moore and the WaPo have come from other sources. The conservative Gateway Pundit reported that a reporter offered a woman $1,000 to accuse Roy Moore although WaPo doesn’t pay people for information. An Alabama pastor claimed a reporter was looking for women “willing to make damaging remarks” about Moore for money. No one associated with The Post made any such call. A man claiming to be a WaPo reporter offered up to $7,000 if they were “willing to make damaging remarks” about Moore.

The victor in this sordid story is the journalism that works to write the truth. James O’Keefe won’t quit, but the journalists will continue to fact-check their stories as long as a fascist regime doesn’t completely take over the United States.

The losers are the women who are trying to tell the world about the sexual assault and sexual harassment that they suffer. This farce creates doubt for brave people who talk about what they endure from those in power who think that they can sexually force themselves on anyone.

The tragedy is that some powerful men still escape even if the women are credible. Sixteen women have come forward to report sexual assault and/or harassment by the man inaugurated as the United States president. These are their stories.

  • Jessica Leeds (1970s): DDT grabbed her breasts and tried to put his hand up her skirt while he sat next to her on an airplane. “He was like an octopus. His hands were everywhere.”
  • Kristin Anderson (early 1990s): DDT put his hand up her skirt and touched her genitals at a Manhattan nightclub; she had never met him.
  • Jill Harth (1993): DDT sexually assaulted her in his daughter Ivanka’s bedroom.
  • Lisa Boyne (mid-1990s): DDT made women walk across a table in front of him and “stuck his head right underneath their skirts.” He commented on their genitals and whether they were wearing underwear.
  • Cathy Heller (1997): DDT tried to forcibly kiss her while he was married to Marla Maples.
  • Temple Taggart (1997): DDT forcibly kissed her and other Miss USA Pageant candidates.
  • Karena Virginia (1998): DDT approached her at the US Open, made sexual comments about her body, and groped her. He said, “Don’t you know who I am? Don’t you know who I am?”
  • Tasha Dixon (2001): DDT came into the contests’ dressing room; the former Miss Arizona said the girls were either topless or naked. In 2005, DDT bragged about doing it and said, “I sort of get away with things like that.”
  • Mindy McGillivray (2003): DDT groped her while she was helping photograph a Ray Charles concert at Mar-a-Lago.
  • Rachel Crooks (2005): DDT “kissed me directly on the mouth” when she was a 22-year-old receptionist in Trump Tower.
  • Natasha Stoynoff (2005): DDT was “pushing me against the wall and forcing his tongue down my throat: after taking her into a room with Melania Trump waiting outside. She was interviewing DDT for People magazine.
  • Jessica Drake (mid-2000s): DDT “grabbed” her and two other women and kissed them “without asking permission” and then offered her $10,000 and use of his plane if she would come back to his room.
  • Ninni Laaksonen (2006): DDT groped the former Miss Finland when she was preparing for a TV appearance.
  • Samantha Holvey (2006): DDT lined up contestants when she was Miss North Carolina so he could step “in front of each girl and look you over from head to toe like we were just meat, we were just sexual objects, that we were not people.”
  • Summer Zervos (2007): DDT met with the a contestant on The Apprentice about getting a job at the Trump Tower, greeted her with an “open-mouthed” kiss, groped her breast, and, as she attempted to push him off, “thrusted his genitals” against her. She has filed a defamation lawsuit against DDT.
  • Cassandra Searles (2013): DDT “grabbed my ass and invited me to his hotel room” as he treated Miss USA competitors “like cattle.”

This list doesn’t include the woman who initiated a lawsuit for rape when she was only 13 years old. She dropped the suit after threats against her, according to her attorneys. A court deposition and Harry Hurt III’s 1993 book, Lost Tycoon, describes DDT’s violent rape of Ivana Trump, his wife at the time and mother of Eric, Donald Jr., and Ivanka. DDT’s lawyer at the time, Michael Cohen, said that a man cannot rape his spouse.

A tape from Access Hollywood describes DDT’s assaults in his own words. When the tape was first released, DDT admitted it was true, but now he claims that the video is not authentic. The program stands behind its authenticity. DDT also tries to hide from his assaults by saying that some of the women are too ugly for him to attack.

As long as DDT hides in his Oval Office, the United States will continue its culture of sexual assault.

September 4, 2015

What the GOP Stands For

The GOP consistently asserts that it’s the party of values, that the Democrats lack morality and integrity. Here are some examples of their values from just the past week.

GOP presidential candidate Jeb Bush opposes almost everything that his opponent Donald Trump represents and attacks Trump for supporting Planned Parenthood, tax increases, single-payer health insurance, and Democrats. Meanwhile Trump trashes Bush about his “love” for immigrants, speaking Spanish, and being weak. When asked if he would support Trump if the business mogul won the GOP nomination, Bush said, “Of course.” He can abandon all of his ideals because “we need to be unified. We need to win.” Trump has signed the “pledge” to support the winning GOP candidate, but it’s not legally binding.

Trickle-down Trumpism” has hit Nevada: as Rep. Joe Heck (R-NV), a senate candidate, wants to make doing away with birthright citizenship, “part of the discussion,” as far-right Republicans so quaintly describe their opposition to the 14th Amendment. Nevada is one of five states with the largest numbers of Hispanic voters. Heck also opposes Medicare, minimum-wage increases, reproductive rights, and Social Security.

Former Vice President Dick Cheney, who plans to speak in the upcoming rally opposing the Iran agreement, sees nothing wrong about his own preemptive Iraq War that killed hundreds of thousands and cost the United States trillions of dollars. About that invasion, he said:

“It was the right thing to do then. I believed it then and I believe it now. No apologies.”

He also wants to go to war with ISIS because they may have weapons of mass destruction—another several trillion dollars lost to the United States.

As he is wont to do, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker claimed and then disclaimed something, this time that a border wall on the Canadian border of the U.S. should be considered because it is a “legitimate issue.” He never said that, claimed the GOP presidential candidate after millions of people heard him on last Sunday’s Meet the Press. It was a joke, he said, because millions of people were outraged by his foreign policy strategy.

Chief video editor James O’Keefe, who managed to kill ACORN through falsified videos, has gone after Hillary Clinton. At a press conference, he claimed his hidden video cameras by Project Veritas caught two senior Clinton campaign officials accepting illegal contributions from a foreign citizen. The video shows Campaign staffers turned away a Canadian customer at a Clinton rally because financial support for U.S. campaigns can come only from residents in the U.S., but a Project Veritas employee took $40 from the Canadian woman and bought her the t-shirt plus another $35 worth of merchandise. Project Veritas wants its $35 back and people to believe that Clinton violated the campaign-finance laws.

A project attorney admitted that the staff who bought the merchandise broke the law but said it shouldn’t count. According to the Federal Election Commission’s campaign finance laws, people cannot “knowingly provide substantial assistance” by “acting as a conduit or intermediary for foreign national contributions and donations.” In Roman mythology, Veritas (the name of O’Keefe’s project) was the goddess of truth and mother of Virtue.

Once the United States was proud to be a “melting pot” of cultures, but the GOP wants to eradicate the concept. Rick Santorum, whose father was born in Italy, ridiculed the value of diversity in the United States, a viewpoint popular with conservatives. Rep. Pete Sessions (R-TX) blamed “diversity in America” for gun violence, using the “murder in Virginia” as an example. Vester Flanagan, the man allegedly behind the “murder in Virginia,” was born in Oakland, California.Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, whose mother was pregnant when she arrived in the United States, said, “Immigration without assimilation is invasion.”

Kansas started a downward spiral when Sam Brownback became governor with a GOP legislature four years ago and stripped the state of most of its funding. When schools sued the state for adequate funding, the legislature passed a law removing authority for the state Supreme Court to appoint chief judges for the state’s judicial districts. This year’s budget declared that any court striking down this law would stop funding for the entire court system throughout the state. A district judge has just struck down the law because state constitution sets broad standards that the legislature must meet.

Kansas AG Derek Schmidt plans to carry through the removal of all funding for the courts. Attorney Pedro Irigonegaray stated, “Without funding, our state courts would close, criminal cases would not be prosecuted, civil matters would be put on hold, real estate could not be bought or sold, adoptions could not be completed.” A stay has been granted until the state Supreme Court can hear an appeal. Thanks to Brownback’s generosity to corporations and the wealthy while raising property taxes, Kansas has lost jobs and suffers billions of dollars of debt.  A report from Center on Budget and Policy Priorities called the state “a cautionary tale, not a model” because it’s remained in the recession and declining even further. At one time, Brownback aspired to the White House.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich, a GOP presidential candidate sometimes considered less nuts than his opponents, has a goal for his desired presidency: put the name of McKinley back on Alaska’s Mt. Denali. That was the mountain’s name, meaning “the high one” in Athabaskan language, until 1896 when the gold miner who “discovered” it wanted it named after the champion of the gold standard. McKinley never visited Alaska, and most people don’t know anything about him except for his assassination six months into his presidency. In American Place-Names, George R. Stewart wrote, “The original naming [McKinley] was little more than a joke.”

Alaska changed the name back to Denali in 1975, but Rep. Ralph Regula (R-OH) blocked the change in Congress until 2009 when his colleagues took up the battle. By keeping the legislation pending, the Board of Geographic Names couldn’t make a change, a protocol and not a law. Fortunately, a 1947 law gave the Secretary of the Interior the power when “the Board does not act within a reasonable time,” now 40 years. Incensed, Regula is calling the president a dictator. Ohio evidently considers the name change of vital importance for the United States.

In less than two weeks (September 16), at least ten GOP presidential candidates will stand on a stage at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library to engage in a debate sponsored by CNN. That’s “at least ten” because Carly Fiorina may have browbeat the cable network to let her participate. Since the August 6 debate, Fiorina has done well in the polls, but the ones before that debate kept her out of the main event.  CNN refused to change the guidelines, saying that it would be illegal, until they changed the guidelines. Nobody previously included could be bumped, but Fiorina might be added in what could be called “the Fiorina addendum.” The GOP is delighted because having a woman on the stage might make them look slightly better.

No week would be complete without Fox network idiocy. The Black Lives Matter movement is a “criminal organization,” according to Tom Shillue. He said that “it’s time to arrest the leaders” and “people are drunk on rights in this country.” An onscreen banner during Fox & Friends described it as a murder movement, and Elizabeth Hasselback asked why Black Lives Matter was not labeled as a hate group, trying to falsely connect the death of Harris County Deputy Darren Goforth (TX) to the movement. Frequent guest David Clarke, a Wisconsin law enforcement officer, said President Obama “breathed life into an ugly movement.” Shannon Miles, who killed Goforth, has a criminal history and was declared mentally incompetent in 2012 but has no connection to the Black Lives Matter movement.

The biggest irony of the week? (And that’s hard to pick!) Sen. Rand Paul, sort of Libertarian and GOP presidential candidate who opposes government surveillance, has provided the masses with an app for a selfie with him. Installing it will give his campaign permission to follow the person with a GPS and find the person’s social media accounts.

Media and ignorance is driving the decisions of many Republicans, and these are the results. A new Public Policy Polling shows that 51 percent of GOP voters want to eliminate birthright citizenship, 54 percent think President Obama is a Muslim, and only 29 percent believe he was born in the United States. Meanwhile, 40 percent think that Ted Cruz, born in Canada, was born in the United States. Only 14 percent of Republicans are convinced that the president is a Christian; even Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker said he doesn’t know. Trump’s supporters have even higher percentages about these issues: 66 percent believe President Obama is a Muslim, 61 percent say he wasn’t born in the United States, and 63 percent want to amend the Constitution to eliminate birthright citizenship.

And this is just the tip of the iceberg of bigotry and stupidity from the past week.

October 23, 2014

Conservatives Want to Stop Votes from Minorities, Women

Filed under: Elections — trp2011 @ 8:54 PM
Tags: , , ,

Delivering absentee ballots in Arizona is legal, but A.J. LaFaro, chairman of the Maricopa County Republican Committee, became highly incensed that Ben Marine brought in a number of them into a polling station. LaFaro complained that Marine was “a vulgar, disrespectful, violent thug that has no respect for our laws. I would have followed him to the parking lot to take down his tag number but I feared for my life.” Maybe it was because Marine was wearing a Citizens for a Better Arizona (CBA) shirt. Or maybe it was because he is brown? LaFaro posted a video of Marine on YouTube, and comments read:

 “This is a high crime, it is treason to this country and a betrayal of democracy. This should be a crime punishable by death.”

“I am going to find this illegal-loving scumbag and kill him.”

James-OKeefe-638x425Because voter fraud is almost nonexistent, James O’Keefe, the undercover pimp who targeted the community organizing group ACORN, is trying to create it in Colorado that will vote by mail for the first time this year. Several times, he and his associates have asked Sen. Mark Udall’s staffers, offering to fill out ballots for other people. One of O’Keefe’s people is masquerading as a member of a nonexistent LGBT activist group called Rocky Mountain Vote Pride. Turned away after his offer of filling out mail-in ballots for college student who had moved away but still got mail on a Boulder campus, he came back with a “civics professor” who was, in fact, O’Keefe. One might question if these people should be arrested themselves for voter fraud.

Women don’t need males on the Fox network to declare war on them when Fox has women paid to denigrate those of their own gender. After Fox’s The Five co-host Greg Gutfeld said that young women aren’t smart enough to vote as conservatives, co-host Kimberly Guilfoyle said that they should be excused from jury duty because they lack life experience and just “don’t get it.” Tucker Carlson has voiced the same opinion earlier when he criticized a GOP campaign that encouraged young women to vote. On Outnumbered, he said , “You want your government run by people … whose favorite show is Say Yes To The Dress?”

Kevin D. Williamson echoed the sentiment on National Review Online:

“I would like to suggest, as gently as I can, that if you are voting as an act of self-gratification, if you do not understand the role that voting in fact plays in a constitutional republic…, you should not vote. If you get your politics from actors and your news from television comedians — you should not vote. There’s no shame in it, your vote is statistically unlikely to affect the outcome of an election, and there are many much more meaningful ways to serve your country and your fellow man: Volunteer at a homeless shelter; join the Marine Corps; become a nun; start a business.”

When a Wisconsin citizen, Heba Mohammad, wrote her alderman, Chris Wery, if the city could provide busing for poor and elderly people to vote, he said that he needed proof that she wasn’t a terrorist before he could answer her. Word got out that he was bullying Mohammad, and he—sort-of—apologized in the Green Bay newspaper, the Press-Gazette: “I phrased it wrong. It was the wrong setting. And I apologized for that.” He then sent a follow-up email to Mohammad saying that he didn’t want people to get a “free day” of busing.

As chairman of the Republican Governors Association, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is back on the campaign trail with compelling reasons why GOP governors should be elected: they need to control “voting mechanisms” in order to win the White House in 2016. That’s what he told the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The GOP is very afraid that a fair voting system might result in majority votes against their party.

When a Michigan citizen told a representative of a state GOP House candidate, Todd Courser, that she was voting for his opponent, she got a surprising response. The caller said, “Would you change your vote if you knew that Margaret Guerrero DeLuca had faggots and blacks working for her?” According to Courser, his goal is to take over the Michigan GOP. He’s also under investigation by state police, county prosecutors, and Michigan election officials for allegations of violating the state election law, representing himself as an incumbent on campaign signs, misuse of campaign resources.

Running for U.S. senator in Nevada two years ago, Sharon Angle said, “If this Congress keeps going the way it is, people are really looking toward those Second Amendment remedies.” Iowa now has its “Second Amendment” candidate for U.S. senate: Joni Ernst. Two years ago, she also said that she would use a gun to defend herself from the government. As Paul Waldman wrote in the Washington Post:

“I don’t care how many times you praise the Founding Fathers or talk about your love of the Constitution, if you think that the way to resolve policy differences or personal arguments with the government is not just by trying to get different people elected or waging a campaign to change the laws or filing suits in court, but through the use of violence against the government, you have announced that you have no commitment to democracy. In the American system, we don’t say that if the government enacts policies we don’t like, we’ll start killing people.”

Many GOP elected officials and candidates like Ernst describe the president’s two elections, the Affordable Care Act, and anything else that they don’t like as “tyranny” and “facism.” They do this at the same time that they work to rig elections in their favor–and threaten to kill anyone who gets in their way. It’s the Cliven Bundy approach.

After Wisconsin’s voter ID law was delayed until after the November 4 election, conservatives in Wisconsin have a new intimidation ploy. Milwaukee County’s Republican Elections Commissioner Rick Baas urged his crowd of supporters to take an “extra step of vigilance.” State law allows anyone to go within three feet of voters and then challenge the validity of their votes. They also have to swear under oath that they have firsthand knowledge that the person is not qualified, but that probably won’t slow down some of the fanatics.

The New Georgia Project, an officially nonpartisan group, reported that it registered 86,000 new voters, but many of these registrations are nowhere to be found because the state’s GOP Secretary of State Brian Kemp failed to process as many as 40,000 of these. Unable to settle the situation otherwise, the group filed a lawsuit against Kemp and five county boards of elections. One of five counties was settled, but a hearing is set for tomorrow in Fulton County Superior Court.

Last July, Kemp, who is supposed to be in charge of a bi-partisan election, commented on the registration of these voters:

“The Democrats are working hard, and all these stories about them, you know, registering all these minority voters that are out there and others that are sitting on the sidelines, if they can do that, they can win these elections in November.”

He added that a higher level of scrutiny was necessary for these registration. “We don’t know who these people are or where they come from.” With 25 of the 80,000 registrations proven to be fraudulent, Kemp started a much deeper investigation into the group’s registration drive. The 0.03 percentage of problems is far lower than the national average of 13.9 percent problems.

In Hong Kong, top official, Chun-ying Leung, said that open elections would result in the poor of the territory in control. For that reason, he thinks that free elections are impossible. “If it’s entirely a numbers game and numeric representation, then obviously you’d be talking to the half of the people in Hong Kong who earn less than US$1,800 a month,” he said in an interview.

Leung’s comments shouldn’t be surprising because his opinion prevails in the U.S. Republican party.

September 20, 2014

Wanted: Strategy for Peace, Not War

Filed under: War — trp2011 @ 8:49 PM
Tags: , , , ,

The International Day of Peace is commemorated each year on the 21st of September. Before Congress left for home two days ago, members passed an amendment to arm Syrian “moderates” for more war. Where the United States goes from there is not yet known because Congress doesn’t meet for very long and makes very few decisions when it does.

The media has fueled the fear of ISIL in the U.S., and the constant showing videos of two beheadings has created a frenzy among people in the U.S. United States intelligence agencies concluded that it provides no threat to this country. Daniel Benjamin, who served as the State Department’s top counterterrorism adviser during Mr. Obama’s first term, said the public discussion about the ISIS threat has been a “farce” and that the lurid descriptions of the threat are “unjustified.”

Former Senate Intelligence Chair, former Sen. Bob Graham, believes the rise of ISIL was helped by the U.S. failure to investigate Saudi Arabia’s role in the 9/11/01 attacks. When air traffic was blocked after 9/11, 144 people, mostly from Saudi aristocracy, were allowed to fly back to Saudi Arabia without any questioning. Graham noted that U.S. officials “were inexplicably solicitous to Saudis.” U.S. officials in Saudi Arabia found people to be obstructive to any investigative attempts, and the pattern continued for a decade. In 2007, Stuart Levey, the Under Secretary of the US Treasury in charge of monitoring and impeding the financing of terrorism, said, “If I could somehow snap my fingers and cut off the funding from one country, it would be Saudi Arabia.” At that time, no one identified by the U.S. or the U.N. as funding terrorism had been prosecuted by the Saudis.

Other concerns, according to the co-chairman of the official inquiry into these attacks, are the continued Saudi support of jihadi movements such as al-Quaeda. In 2009, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton wrote that “donors in Saudi Arabia constitute the most significant source of funding to Sunni terrorist groups worldwide.” Throughout George W. Bush’s “war on terror,” Saudis funded al-Qaeda, ISIL, Hamas, and the Taliban. The Saudi monarchy has long had an alliance with the Wahhabi clergy, who support an intolerant Islam belief that denounces Shia as heretics and treats women as possessions.

The current plan calls for a special training facility for “moderate” Syrian opposition in Saudi Arabia, which gives priority to regime changes in Damascus. Each U.S. military intervention in Iraq only makes the country more unstable. After U.S. involvement, Syria and Libya are failed states.

A century ago, Britain and France divided Middle East countries between the two countries to loot its resources and maintained power by defeating any move toward independence, smothering Arab nationalism. The French put Christians in charge of Lebanon to control the Sunnis and Shiites and the minority Shiites in charge of the majority Sunnis in Syria. Britain set up a Sunni king in Iraq to rule the majority Shiites and used Zionism in Palestine to keep the country divided.

The U.S. and Europe continue to keep the status quo.  As President Obama said, “We will ensure the free flow of energy from the region to the world.” Roughly translated, the U.S. goal is to keep making money off the oil.

Bin Laden said he goaded the U.S. into war to “bleed America to the point of bankruptcy.” George W. Bush paid between $3 trillion and $4 trillion for his two wars in the Middle East, and, with the help of Sens. John McCain (R-AZ) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC), ISIL is following the same pattern. The Saudi ambassador, Adel al-Jubeir, found support from these two legislators to move toward taking over Damascus. To topple the Syrian president Bashar Assad, Saudi King Abdulla appointed Prince Bandar bin Sultan who successfully woos McCain.  Bandar was involved in illegal sale of U.S. weapons to Iran during Ronald Reagan’s administration and was clear about his goal to use Sunnis in committing genocide on all Shiites in 2001. In 2008, he threatened a terrorist attack in London if Britain did not stop their investigation into Saudi arms deals. Although Bandar resigned as head of Saudi General Intelligence, he remains Secretary General of Saudi National Security Council.

james o.keefeJames O’Keefe, master of editing videos to prove that liberals are evil, also fueled McCain’s arguments by dressing like Osama bin Laden and crossing the U.S.-Mexico border. In a Senate hearing, McCain use the stunt in claiming that the border isn’t safe. Top Homeland Security official, Francis Taylor, said that border officials saw O’Keefe and the people filming him, but The Drudge Report (one of Mitt Romney’s “news” resources) printed as its top headine “ISIS at the border?” Fox told its elderly white viewers “D.H.S. Confirms ISIS Planning Infiltration of U.S. Southern Border” although its headline on the Fox Latino network read “ISIS Terrorists Not Sneaking Over U.S. Southern Border With Mexico, D.H.S. Officials Tell Congress.”

Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ) criticized President Obama’s playing golf and said that ISIL may partner with Iran to receive nuclear weapons and cross the U.S.-Mexico border. Playing golf doesn’t “degrade” national security, Iran and ISIL are enemies, and Iran has no nuclear weapons. Yet Franks is still convinced that ISIL is operating in Ciudad Juarez (Mexico) across the border from El Paso (TX). Franks is a member of the Armed Services Committee.  Senatorial candidates on the campaign trail in Alaska, Arkansas, New Hampshire, and North Carolina are using this issue to instill more fear in their constituents. Republicans believe that the ISIL controversy will win them this fall’s election.

Retired generals demanding aggression against ISIL are making money from war. General Jack Keene wants 25,000 “boots on the ground.” His think tank, the Institute for the Study of War (ISW), includes such neoconservatives as Liz Cheney and William Kristol among its leaders. He has long called for air strikes and then moved up to calling for special operation forces. Among his other credentials, left unmentioned, are special adviser to Academi (formerly Blackwater); board member to tank and aircraft manufacturer General Dynamics, which paid him $258,006 just last year; and “venture partner” to SCP Partners, an investment firm that partners with defense contractors, including XVionics, an “operations management decision support system” company used in Air Force drone training.

General James Mattis also wants the U.S. in Iraq; his role on General Dynamics paid $88,479 cash and stock options last year. General Anthony Zinni, who wants at least 10,000 troops, is a board member to BAE Systems’ US subsidiary and also works for several military-focused private equity firms. Frances Townsend has positions in two investment firms with defense company holdings, MacAndrews & Forbes and Monument Capital Group, as well as acting as advisor to defense contractor Decision Sciences.”

The U.S. has actually been training and arming Syrian rebels in Turkey and Jordan during the past six years. Keane’s ISW, which made money out of the venture, promised that this action will create stability. Many of the groups that were part of the Free Syria Army—and who we trained—have now joined ISIL with their CIA-backed training and equipment.

The United States caused the Middle East to implode by removing Saddam Hussein from Iraq with no contingency plan. The loss of his power led to the rise of fundamentalist movements that resulted in the Isis Caliphate and the exploitation of Syria’s populist uprising. Without U.S.-provided training, weapons, and funding, ISIL would never progressed into starting war throughout the Middle East and leading to serious global issues.

The plan to arm more so-called moderates that can then take their weapons to ISIL is reminiscent of the protest sign during the Bush years: “We’re making enemies faster than we can kill them.”

We need to listen to Aristotle’s advice: “It is not enough to win a war; it is more important to organize the peace.” We have never had a strategy for winning the war that George W. Bush created at the beginning of his first term and then nurtured during his eight years in Washington. The U.S. needs a strategy for peace, not war.

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