Greenwald: DOJ Prosecution Of Assange Poses “Grave Threats To Press Freedom”
November 17, 2018
The “accidental” disclosure that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has been secretly charged by Department of Justice in the Eastern District of Virginia has ignited a firestorm over the freedom of the press, and protections offered to journalists under the First Amendment.
Beginning in 2010, the Department of Justice under Obama began to draw a distinction between WikiLeaks and other news organizations. Former Attorney General Eric Holder insisting that Assange’s organization does not deserve the same first amendment protections during the Chelsea Manning case, in which the former Army intelligence analyst was found guilty at a court-martial of leaking thousands of classified Afghan War Reports.
Ultimately, the previous administration concluded that it could not criminally charge Assange and WikiLeaks due to First Amendment protections.
Decoding The Hypersonic Putin On A Day Of Remembrance
November 13, 2018
By Pepe Escobar
. . .
Enter the Avangard
Vast sectors of the US Deep State are in denial, but Putin may have been able to impress on Trump the necessity of serious dialogue due to an absolutely key vector: the Avangard.
The Avangard is a Russian hypersonic glide vehicle capable of flying over Mach 20 – 24,700km/h, or 4 miles per second – and one of the game-changing Russian weapons Putin announced at his ground-breaking March 1 speech.
The Avangard has been in the production assembly line since the summer of 2018, and is due to become operational in the southern Urals by the end of next year or early 2019.
In the near future, the Avangard may be launched by the formidable Sarmat RS-28 intercontinental ballistic missile and reach Washington in a mere 15 minutes, flying in a cloud of plasma “like a meteorite” – even if the launch is from Russian territory. Serial production of Sarmat ICBMs starts in 2021.
The Avangard simply cannot be intercepted by any existing system on the planet – and the US knows it. Here is General John Hyten, head of US Strategic Command: “We don’t have any defense that could deny the employment of such a weapon against us.”
Why Washington Blows Up over European Army
November 16, 2018
“Insulting” – that’s how US President Donald Trump sharply reacted to the idea of a “real European army” proposed by French President Emmanuel Macron.
And it was how Macron rationalized the need for an independent military force for Europe that perhaps most irked the American leader.
Speaking on a tour of World War I battlefields in northern France last week, Macron said that Europe needed to defend itself from “China, Russia and even the United States of America”.
It was a pretty extraordinary choice of words by the French leader. To frame the US among an array of perceived foreign enemy powers was a devastating blow to the concept of a much-vaunted transatlantic alliance.
Since the Second World War, ending 1945, the concept of an American-European alliance has been the bedrock of a supposed inviolable, mutual defense pact. That nearly seven-decade alliance is now being questioned more than ever.
Merkel Defies Trump, Backs Macron’s Call For European Army
November 13, 2018
Two days after French president Emanuel Macron snubbed President Trump, slamming nationalism as the antithesis of patriotism during a closely watched speech with Trump sitting just a few feet away, and which prompted a flurry of provocative and taunting tweets by the US president demanding that Europe pay for its own defense (or else Paris would now be speaking German), Germany’s Angela Merkel set out her own vision of a more assertive European Union, one which aligned with that of Macron and included a European army.
After spending the weekend commemorating the end of World War I in Paris alongside more than 60 global leaders and witnessed first hand the tensions between Trump and France’s Emmanuel Macron, the normally understated chancellor took an uncharacteristically bold stance as she addressed EU lawmakers in Strasbourg.
In Paris, Merkel defended her world view against the U.S. president’s barbs as he sparred with Macron. And, as Bloomberg reports, she went a step further in the EU parliament on Tuesday, telling deputies they need to adapt to a world in which Europe’s traditional allies may no longer guarantee the continent’s security.
Saturday’s speaking points and articles for review.
Here are a few articles for further reading from Saturday’s talk.
Courtesy of Dave.
Saudi Crown Prince Ordered Khashoggi’s Assassination: CIA
November 17, 2018
By Shane Harris & Greg Miller
Washington: The CIA has concluded that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman ordered the assassination of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul last month, contradicting the Saudi government’s claims that he was not involved.
The CIA’s assessment, in which officials have said they have high confidence, is the most definitive to date linking Mohammed to the operation and complicates the Trump administration’s efforts to preserve its relationship with a close ally.
A team of 15 Saudi agents flew to Istanbul on government aircraft in October and killed Khashoggi inside the Saudi consulate, where he had come to pick up documents that he needed for his planned marriage to a Turkish woman.
Jim & Bill,
On Saturday, we talked about Trump losing it. This, from the Saker a few weeks ago.
Trump Goes Full Retard… (UPDATED)
November 02, 2018
I can’t say that I am ‘surprised’, but still, I am. That he would actually do this really makes reality even weirder than fantasy. Check out what The Donald posted today:
I think that if I was a kinder person I would probably be embarrassed for him, but I cannot muster enough kindness in me for that. To me, he looks like one delusional and pompous ass with a serious narcissistic personality disorder to boot. To think that he actually controls the US nuclear arsenal (at least in theory) is outright frightening.
I suppose that these “tweets” are this idiot’s idea of communicating a message so I will place this in the “speeches and statements” section and nevermind that “tweets” are something which is associated with bird and, hence, bird-brains.
Courtesy of Dave.
Breaking/Exclusive: NEO, Why the Khashoggi Murder Really Matters
November 17, 2018
By Gordon Duff
[Editor’s note: Today, the CIA threw MBS under a bus, telling the Washington Post that they have proof the Saudi Crown Prince ordered the brutal dismembering of Washington Post correspondent Jamal Khashoggi, a Virginia resident.
Their failed cover story is that they planned to “repatriate” him, an effort which began when they put a plastic bag over his head. I am certain Khashoggi saw that as a sign things were beginning to go very wrong since CIA records now show the same folks who brought the Glad Freezer Bags for his body parts also brought electric bone saws with the proper connectors to run on the Turkish power grid.
We tell the real truth, that the “slice and dice rendition” is a Gina Haspel special. We might go a bit further, pointing out that Ms. Haspel is an Israeli citizen planted as a mole inside the CIA to destroy both the US and Saudi Arabia, but that is for another article. G]
[ Editor’s Note Two: As is often the case, only VT will touch the third rail of the Kashoggi killing. The others don’t have the background, the sources, or the connecting the dots talent without the necessary 30 to 40 years of experience in doing it.
No one has dared bring the Kashoggi killing to the door step of rogue operators in the US, at the highest levels. You have it all below, an early Thanksgiving present.
As for framing, Gordon used the massive coverage on the British Skirpal psyops, a pitiful affair, but one that mass media put wind in its sails by not punching holes in it early on, which a smart elementary school kid could have done.
With world markets priced for perfection, this is not good news.
Unexpected Decline In German Industry Output Hints At Economic Slowdown
October 7, 2018
BERLIN (Reuters) – German industrial output dipped unexpectedly in August for the third time in as many months, data showed on Monday, suggesting Europe’s largest economy lost steam in the third quarter.
Data from the Economy Ministry showed industrial output fell 0.3 percent in August, confounding a Reuters forecast for a rise of 0.4 percent. It followed a fall of 1.3 percent in July, itself a downward revision of an earlier, stronger number.
Jennifer McKeown, economist at Capital Economics, said the weak reading, combined with a recent downturn in retail sales, indicated the economy had not sustained its strong start to the year.
“August’s 0.3 percent fall in German industrial production is much weaker than expected and suggests that the economy is very unlikely to match the second quarter’s 0.5 percent expansion in the third quarter,” she said.
We warned listeners this was not going to end well.
“It Will Be A Cold War”: APEC Summit Ends In Unprecedented Chaos After Dramatic US-China Showdown
November 18, 2018
One day after vice president Mike Pence and China’s president Xi Jinping clashed after exchanging sharply worded barbs in a showdown between the two superpowers, on Sunday the annual Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit ended in unprecedented chaos and disarray, without agreement on a joint communique for the first time in its history as the escalating rivalry between the United States and China dominated proceedings and reflected escalating trade tensions.
Competition between the United States and China over the Pacific was also thrown into focus with the United States and its Western allies launching a coordinated response to China’s Belt and Road program, Reuters added.
One diplomat told Reuters tension between the U.S. and China, bubbling all week, erupted when the Chinese government’s top diplomat, Wang Yi, objected during a leaders’ retreat to two paragraphs in a draft document seen by Reuters. One mentioned opposing “unfair trade practices” and reforming the WTO, while another concerned sustainable development.
“These two countries were pushing each other so much that the chair couldn’t see an option to bridge them,” said the unnamed diplomat. “China was angered that the reference to WTO blamed a country for unfair trade practices.”