Sunday 26 February 2012

A can of special brew or the Sun on Sunday - Which is better for your brain?

By Dark Politricks

Today the first edition of the Sun on Sunday is released to the British public.

This is the successor paper to the very discredited News of the World. A paper so blackened in the eyes of the British public it led to a Parliamentary inquiry into Press Practices - the Levison Inquiry, saw the arrest and jailing of a number of reporters and policemen, the paying of millions in compensation to stalked celebrities and victims of phone hacking like Milly Dowler and the subsequent appearances of Murdoch (senior and junior) being grilled in front of MP's before they threw everyone on the paper overboard and disbanded the most successful Sunday tabloid paper the UK has ever known.

The Levison Inquiry is still going and day by day more revelations are revealed about the cosy practises that saw the British Police trade tips with Journalists for cash, the illegal hacking into computers and phones of targets of stories, the stalking of celebrities and the ways and means in which the British tabloid press works as a whole on an almost daily basis.

Lest anyone think I am going to attack the Sun and the News of the World unfairly in this article let me tell you know that I believe all Fleet Street papers are as bad as each other, that all of them have probably engaged in phone hacking, bribery and tip trading with the Police. It is only because the News of the World got caught first that they are facing the full force of the public wrath but I hold all mainstream papers in the utter contempt they deserve.

This week at Levison see's quite an interesting list of witnesses including the ex head of the Metropolitan Police Sir Paul Stephenson, and Yates of Yard, who lead the initial inquiry into the phone hacking and is now working hard in Bahrain teaching their police how to crack heads of the protesters  - not that we hear much of this in our tabloids seeing that Bahrain is an ally whilst Syria isn't.

The line up at Levison for the coming week is as follows:
Monday Sue Akers, the Deputy Assistant Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) who is leading the inquiry into phone and email hacking and claims of bribery of public officials.

Brian Paddick, former deputy assistant commissioner, MPS, who claims his voicemail was hacked.

Lord Prescott, the former Labour Party deputy leader who also claimed his voicemail was hacked.

Tuesday Nick Davies, The Guardian journalist. Jacqui Hames, former MPS officer, and Crimewatch presenter.

MP Simon Hughes.

Chris Jeffries, the Bristol landlord, who falsely implicated in the murder of Jo Yeates.

Jane Winter, director of British Irish Rights Watch (to be confirmed)

Magnus Boyd, solicitor (to be read)

Wednesday Detective Inspector (MPS) Mark Maberley

Detective Chief Superintendent (MPS) Keith Surtees

Detective Sergeant Phillip Williams

Thursday Peter Clarke, former deputy assistant commissioner with specialist operations, MPS

Andy Hayman, former assistant commissioner, MPS

Sir Paul Stephenson, former Metropolitan Police Commissioner

John Yates, former assistant commissioner, MPS
Apparently, the Independent assures us that we can expect to hear 'Jaw-dropping' testimonies as the focus of the inquiry turns to police and public officials.

Apparently the reason the Sun on Sunday was brought out today and not next week as planned is purely down to the prospect of so much dirt being revealed in the coming week at Levison that it would have been impossible to launch a new paper amidst so much dirt and fresh revelations about the corrupt relationship between the mainstream media and the British police.

As the Independent assures us, this week we will see  "jaw-dropping stuff" and "the most sensational developments yet."  As well as the promise that these new revelations, allegations and counter-allegations would result in a "bloodbath".

It seems the choice between launching the Sun on Sunday now during the comparatively quiet of only just having a number of Sun journalists arrested along with members of our fine constabulary under claims of corruption is nothing compared to the shit storm that could be blowing around Westminster next Sunday.

The arrest of Sun journalists including the deputy editor over claims of inappropriate payments to police and public officials is apparently not out of the ordinary in these dying days of mainstream news. The five Sun Journalists arrested were deputy editor Geoff Webster, picture editor John Edwards, chief reporter John Kay, chief foreign correspondent Nick Parker and deputy news editor John Sturgis.

As well as the usual mob of News International criminals that are making their homes at the Police Stations of London these days a police officer from Surrey, a Ministry of Defence employee and a member of the armed forces were also arrested at their homes last Saturday on suspicion of corruption, misconduct in a public office and conspiracy in relation to both.

It really seems that the decision to bring out the new and improved News International tabloid AKA the Sun on Sunday was nothing more than a business decision colliding with a very narrow time slot in which the publics attention would be diverted onto other matters apart from the serious and all invasive problem of police corruption and bent journalism in fleet street.

As  the Independent makes clear the choice between launching just after the arrests of a large section of their staff - the same staff who by the way produce the new Sun on Sunday paper - and the potential fallout from new explosive revelations would be virtually impossible.

Apparently emails at News International were being deleted until 2010 and yesterday it was reported that the Independent Police Complaints Commission was looking into a claim that a senior News International figure was given a report from inside the Metropolitan Police on the progress of the original police investigation.

The day before, court documents emerged showing the systematic deletion of emails relating to phone hacking. If only these journo's had read a few more #altnews sites they would have known the only way to delete data from our modern interweb is not to put it there in the first place.

So today's new Sun on Sunday is nothing more than a brazen attempt by Murdoch and Son to gain a few days of coverage and get the brand into the public consciousness before the mud slinging starts.

I have been watching BBC News for the last hour and a half as I write this and they have already mentioned the paper over 20 times including 3 segments with an "expert" (an expert of sleaze I presume) who details the papers strengths in depth and yet the connection between the Independents front page headline and the release of the paper has not been made a single time.

Slack reporting, lazy journalism or just the BBC doing what they do best - ignoring the dots and choosing to draw little fluffy bunnies instead to distract the viewers from any real news.

So will you be going out today and purchasing the all new and improved Sun on Sunday. A paper that promises all of the following on its new "The Sun Says Page":

On our first day as a tabloid — November 17, 1969 — the debut "Sun Says" editorial announced:
"The Sun cares. About the quality of life. About the kind of world we live in. And about people.

"We will never forget YOUR place in The Sun. This newspaper will not be produced for the politicians or the pundits. It will be produced for you."

Forty-three years later, The Sun remains true to those ideals. Our readers' interests, fears, hopes and aspirations are at the centre of everything we do. That is the secret of our success.
On the Phone Hacking scandal the paper mentions only that the arrested staff are "innocent until proven guilty" something they never bothered to do when they hounded members of the public and gave them trials by media before a court could even sit and decide their fate.

Who can forget the mob justice they inspired when they published the names and addresses of pedophiles and a children's doctor had her home attacked because the mob got the words pediatrician and pedophile confused with each other.
"News International closed our sister paper the News of the World over the phone hacking scandal. Since then some of our own journalists have been arrested, though not charged, over allegations of payments to public officials for stories. We believe those individuals are innocent until proven guilty."
But most of all the Sun staff want YOU the reader to know that they care about the law and the oh so strict self regulation that they can choose to drop out of if it suits them like the Daily Express and Daily Star have done.
Our journalists must abide by the Press Complaints Commission's Editors' Code, the industry standard for ethical behaviour, and the News Corporation Standards of Business Conduct. We will hold our journalists to the standards we expect of them.

After all, a newspaper which holds the powerful to account must do the same with itself.

You will be able to trust our journalists to abide by the values of decency as they gather news.

You will be able to trust us
I almost pissed myself whilst reading that bullshit but then I know what these papers are like, I stupidly used to read them before I became aware that there was actually more than one side to every story. That people who live in countries like Iran or Afghanistan deserve more from us than just bombs and missiles no matter how many times papers like the Sun act as drummer boys for war.

Most importantly I learnt on my schooling into journalism (for I once wanted to be such a fine upstanding member of the community) that when you chose to be a journo for a job you are making a Faustian deal with the devil.

No matter how much you may want to uncover truth in the darkest places, reveal dishonesty in places of power and write ground breaking stories that will one day cover walls as examples of bravery and honest journalism. You will in all likelihood end up working for a fleet street rag like the Sun or the Star who show topless girls on Page 3, pay coppers for stories, break the law at every opportunity to gain such important scoops such as which footballer is shagging which model and spend hours outside restaurants hoping to get a photo of Amanda Holden or Cheryl Cole eating a salad.

In all reality you will never get to do all those things you dreamt about at college as the mainstream media is nothing but an establishment whore, a mouthpiece owned by a few rich white men who would rip your story up in a heartbeat if it didn't conform to their editorial policy and didn't have sales figures rather than news worthiness as the key factor in the decision to publish.

I wonder how many people feel the same today.

I also wonder how many ignoramuses will forget that the News of the World was always just the "Sun on Sunday" under a different name and be suckered into parting with money that would be better spent buying a homeless man a can of special brew.

The damage to the tramps brain would undoubtedly be less than the damage to anyone's brain who reads the Sun by choice and at least the tramp will gain some kind of benefit from drinking that can of strong alcohol. All you get from reading the Sun is dimmer by the sentence.

Sunday 19 February 2012

Why are we fighting on the same side as al-Qaeda again?

By Dark Politricks

As the war in Libya showed and our recent calls for "tough action" and support of the Syrian rebels proves we in the west have no compunction about fighting our mortal enemy al-Qaeda in one part of the world and joining with it to fight others in the Middle East.

It seems that our moral hypocrisy knows no bounds or maybe it's because the conspiracy theorists are true for once and al-Qaeda really is al-CIAduh and just a database a of disposable western intelligence assets that are used to stir up trouble in places we wish to "save". Before plundering the natural resources of course.

Don't you find it strange that the same people who we started a decade of war for. The people we threw away hundreds of years of hard won liberties and lost the moral authority we so lauded by debasing ourselves through the use of torture, indefinite detention and extraordinary rendition - are our allies in two recent conflicts?

Maybe someone in authority or the mainstream can't do basic maths and see 2 + 2 as 5, but I can do basic maths and something doesn't add up when our mortal enemy is our also our ally when it suits us.

Libya like Iraq is suffering a worst fate than it ever faced before our "interventions" with rapes, summary executions, crackdowns on journalists, and militias roaming the streets unwilling to give up their western gifts of guns, RPG's and other assorted weaponry.

The head of the militia who controls Tripoli is an "ex" LIFG terrorist who is currently in the process of suing MI6 for facilitating his torture at the hands of the Americans for being linked to al-Qaeda. Despite his well known terrorist links he was still helped by the west to other throw Col Gadaffi's regime.

Now we hear that the head of al-Qaeda Ayman al-Zawahri, has urged Syrians not to rely on the West or Arab governments in their uprising to topple President Bashar Assad.
"Wounded Syria still bleeds day after day, while the butcher, son of the butcher Bashar bin Hafiz (Hafez Assad), is not deterred to stop," Zawahri, wearing his white turban and seated against a green curtain, said.

"But the resistance of our people in Syria despite all the pain, sacrifice and bloodshed escalates and grows," he added.

A Muslim should help "his brothers in Syria with all that he can, with his life, money, opinion, as well as information," Zawahri says.
With reports of Libyan rebels already fighting the Assad forces in Syria it is not too much of a leap to suggest that the same terrorist linked rebels NATO supported in Libya are already being funded and supported on the down low by the West despite last weeks UN vote which Russia and China blocked for good reason.

In fact we already have the UK and French Prime Ministers, who were lauded as heroes in Libya only months ago, meeting to discuss ways they can help the Syrian insurgency. And the USA has met with Syria's neighbour Turkey to discuss ways of providing humanitarian and other support for the Syrians fighting Assad's regime.

So whilst Russia and China have been busy meeting President Assad and calling for dialogue and a ceasefire on both sides to resolve the conflict it seems that the West is happy to let the chaos continue until it gets so bad intervention is inevitable.

The Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Zhai Jun yesterday called for an immediate end to the violence by all sides in the 11-month-old conflict and the Chinese state news authority highlighted that China was "deeply concerned by the escalating crisis and wanted the government and various political factions in the country to end all acts of violence against civilians".

The Russians who also voted against the UN resolution due to it's wording that they felt was too one sided and didn't call for an end to the violence from the Syrian rebels but only the Assad regime also called for a ceasefire from both sides. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said the following:
"In order to deploy a peacekeeping mission, you need the agreement of the receiving side," he said.
"In other words, you need to agree something resembling a ceasefire. But the problem is that the armed groups that are fighting the Syrian regime do not answer to anyone and are not controlled by anyone."
I guess the west don't see it that way from the mainstream news reports who paint  the protesters as nothing more than peaceniks who only march, chant and hold placards in the air whilst being mowed down by Assad's well armed military. Instead they are actually well armed rebels from a number of factions including al-Qaeda and other militant groups who have killed hundreds if not thousands of people on their own including many civilians and soldiers.

We are not witnessing a group of pacifists being massacred in Syria we are watching a civil war from afar in which news reports cannot be verified and truth is intermingled with lies and propaganda from both sides.

However much we may hate the scenes we are watching on TV we must realise that just like Libya we are witnessing a civil war and if the same were occurring in our own countries with major towns and cities taken over and controlled by rebels armed by other countries we would probably be doing the same as Assad if not worse. I can only imagine how the US army would re-act if a rebel group fully took over the city of Los Angeles.

Of course President Assad is a dictator and a tyrant and I have no love for him however he is being painted this way by the west who were only a few years ago calling him a great reformer. When we are on the same side as al-Qaeda we need to sit back and think whether we are doing the right thing by arming rebels linked to them.

We should definitely be following Russia and China's call for a ceasefire on both sides rather than ratcheting up the pressure in a region that is already at boiling point.

Friday 17 February 2012

Twitter Apps caught stealing iPhone users address books

By Dark Politricks

Another example of modern technology being used to implement the surveillance state by consent has come to light with the recent news that Twitter has been caught out invading it's millions of iPhone users privacy by uploading the entire contents of the phone users address books to their servers without permission.

From a story in the Irish Times:

TWITTER HAS promised to make changes to its privacy policies after admitting to uploading entire address books from users’ iPhones and storing them on its computers for up 18 months.

The social network uses the information to help users find existing contacts who already have a Twitter account.

It is the latest internet company revealed to have been copying and storing entire address books from smartphones to provide a “Find Friends” service.

Last week Arun Thampi, a programmer in Singapore, revealed that Path, a social network app created by a former Facebook engineer, was copying address-book data from users’ iPhones without notifying them.

Mr Thampi’s blog post about the practice received worldwide attention, with the result that programmers and privacy advocates began checking to see if other popular apps also uploaded user data without user permission.

Other popular apps – including Yelp, Foursquare, Foodspotting and Instagram – were found to be uploading user data without making it clear they were doing so.

The issue attracted attention from the US Congress. Two members of the subcommittee on commerce, manufacturing and trade have written to Apple chief executive Tim Cook seeking further information on its privacy guidelines for apps. The letter makes reference to one appmaker who claims to have a database including “Mark Zuckerberg’s cell phone number, Larry Ellison’s home phone number and Bill Gates’s cell phone number”.

Apple has responded by saying that in future any app accessing contact information will need explicit approval from the user.

An Apple spokesman said that “Apps that collect or transmit a user’s contact data without their prior permission are in violation of our guidelines”.
So Apple are basically admitting any application that collects or stores users contact data is in breach of their terms of service but somehow I doubt that Twitter is going to be punished in the same way anyone else would if they had been caught breaking the Terms of Service of a global technology giant like Apple.

This comes not so long after the last iPhone related story about your privacy being nothing but an antiquated concept when it was realised that iPhones were secretly tracking every users movements through their inbuilt GPS systems and logging them to a database which could then be taken from the phone by anyone with the right tools. This included Police forces who would pull over drivers and use mobile scanners to transmit the database from the drivers phone to their own computers so that they could see where the person had been travelling to.

Even though stories like this come around every few months or so causing big outcries until the technology device manufacturer promises to fix the "bug" in their software. People need to realise that it doesn't matter if the phone or computer they are using is fitted with key-logging detector software and have their GPS turned off or any other method they think will avoid them being tracked. The only way to avoid being tracked and monitored is to go and live in the woods with no modern electrical devices and divorce yourself from society altogether.

I have documented on this site many times how the big technology players all have links to the global surveillance network in some cases working closely together with agencies such as the CIA and NSA. Even if you disable every possible app and feature on your smart-phone you are still going to be tracked by the cellphone towers that provide your signal and all the modern super computers that reside at those huge data centres monitoring your calls, emails, web traffic and emails for signs of terrorism, malcontent or displeasure at our utopian society.

If you don't believe me just spent a minute or two reading up on ECHELON, and that is a system that has been around for decades. Just imagine what the NSA is capable of now in this post 9-11 world of fear where a terrorist is living in every street and citizens are being asked by Big Brother and Big Sis to keep an eye out for anything "unusual".

This includes people paying with cash, texting in public, supporting the right to bear firearms, ex servicemen, patriots, supporters of Ron Paul or the Occupy movement, belief in outlandish conspiracies like 9.11 or any of the other lies that started our decade of war or anything else on the many leaflets given out to shop keepers and citizens eager to do their duty by snitching on others trying to change the world for the better.

So it comes as no surprise to find yet another example of one of the huge Internet companies breaking privacy laws and stealing personal info at every opportunity as that's the name of the game nowadays.

We have Microsoft building backdoors into their PC’s so that the NSA can bypass local security measures and access them remotely, Google helped to get going with CIA money as well as helping the myriad of US security companies come up with real time monitoring systems. We also have these huge companies buying up smaller enterprises at every opportunity and with most of the world on Facebook (who seem to have issues with their users privacy on a monthly basis) it makes sense for the intelligence community to have close links with any web outfit who's only product is YOUR personal information.

As with Microsofts recent purchase of SKYPE and Googles purchase of most new web technologies that make communication easier the introduction of IPv6 will soon mean that every computer, smart phone, TV and digital appliance connected to the Internet will have it's own unique static IP address enabling any organisation to easily monitor a "person of interest". I can only imagine the size of the databases required at Langley and GCHQ to keep all the information logged about everybody.

8.30 am Mr X's alarm clock went off

8.45 am Mr X emptied his dishwasher, he unloaded 6 plates, 3 forks and 2 tea spoons.

9.30 am Mr X made a phone call to Mr Y lasting 5 minutes 30 seconds in which the following sentences were mentioned: "The government sucks", "I wish someone would do something about the debt crisis" and "I think someone shoot punch David Cameron".

9.50 am Mr X left his house and walked 0.4 miles to the shops at these co-ordinates X,Y. His phones GPS logged his journey and 5 CCTV cameras caught his travels in real time.

10.15 am Mr X visited Tesco's where he bought the following items: A pack of batteries, a torch, the Guardian and some cigarettes. He paid in cash!

10.22 am A CCTV camera recorded a conversation Mr X had with someone outside the shop. The facial recognition software has identified this person as Mr Q who has a criminal record for public order offences as well as being logged as attending a recent Occupy Wall St protest in London.  The nearest voice activated lamppost recorded the full conversation which is ranked the malcontent level of the people as 8.2 out of 10.

10.45 am Mr X logged onto his computer with the following password XXXXX. He went to the following flagged website where he made the following comment on an article titled "why we need a revolution". His comment suggests that he is a potential threat to society and a believer in conspiracy theories. He is currently being processed by the new database at GCHQ for possible signs of danger to society.

10.40 am Mr X has been flagged as domestic extremist and a SWAT team is proceeding to his residence to extract him for questioning.

I'm sure that was all just the fantastical ramblings of a wild imagination and nowhere near the realms of possibility but at least we can rely on the youth of today to sort things out for us before things get too far down the road to a total surveillance state - oh wait they don't know what privacy means. Looks like we're screwed then.

Sunday 12 February 2012

Who else will be ticking the "none of the above" box in the US Presidential Election?

By Dark Politricks

I have already written about the lack of choice in the forthcoming US Presidential election as it seems whether you are Democrat or Republican you are saddled with the certainty that whoever you vote for a continuation of post 9.11 politics of fear, war and loss liberty is on the cards.

Ron Paul seemed to be the only member of the GOP standing for election who breaks away from this mapped out future but as recent Republican votes have shown he is either unable or being prevented from capturing significant votes. Whilst the other contenders for the GOP nomination are taking it in turns to lead the pack it is clear that the Republican party cannot make up their mind about who they want to lose against Obama in the forthcoming Presidential election.

Unless Ron Paul manages to miraculously win the GOP nomination it looks like the Republicans will either go for a candidate who is only going to appeal to a narrow selection of the general population as a whole. They will either pick:

Mitt Romney, a liberal, flip flopping friend of the 1% who doesn't worry about the poor and puts people to sleep whether speaking, debating or singing awfully to his crowds of unadoring fans.

Newt Gingrich, a Pillsbury doughboy of a man with the bankrupt morals of a philandering hypocrite who wants to spend billions putting a base on the moon whilst millions of Americans are still on food stamps.

Rick Santorum, a religious conservative who although Catholic appeals to the large evangelical set of voters who chose their President not with logic and reason but on the likelihood that he will promote more end time activity in the Middle East, support anything Israel does in the belief that it will speed up the return of Jesus and who see Barack Obama as nothing less than a Muslim in Christian clothing who is trying to turn America into a Marxist state.

Add these three uninspiring fellows to the likelihood of an independent Ron Paul and it is very unlikely that a majority of people will vote enough to force the incumbent from the White House and that's a real shame because whether or not you call Obama a Muslim, a Christian, a Marxist or a Liberal he certainly isn't any good for the world at whole or America in general.

The question should also be asked then - "why can't a real liberal Democrat stand for the nomination and appose Barack Obama's very illiberal reign over the USA."

It should not be a given that an incumbent always gets to stand for his parties re-election and it would be nice for the American people to be given a real choice instead of the current choice of "more of the same" or "more of the same under a different party".

Whether you call yourself a liberal, a conservatives or neither, would it not be better if the choice before the American people was a real choice rather than just a change of figurehead. Would it not be a more interesting election if it were Ron Paul standing versus Dennis Kucinich or Pat Buchanan versus Cynthia McKinney. Wouldn't there be more of a real choice, more interesting debates and more of a reason to get out and vote if proper choices were presented to the American people.

The sad thing is that even though Ron Paul is a libertarian and Dennis Kucinich a liberal they probably have more in common than most people think when it comes to the constitution, foreign policy, domestic policing, liberty and the American empire.

Which are all reasons why the establishment would never let them get near the White House with a full head of brain matter and all reasons why Barack Obama is on course to lead a second term preparing America for their new role in the 21st century as a workhouse for Chinese overlords.

Lets just look at all the things which Barack Obama has done which make him NOT a liberal and definitely NOT someone who follows the constitution.

These are also things that make him the perfect candidate to win the election on the establishments behalf and continue the expansion of the Amerikan empire and the destruction of freedom and liberty at home.

1. He has shown the capacity to break most of his pre-election campaign promises showing skills only a true politician could sleep at night with.

2. He has kept the country in a permanent state of war whilst claiming the opposite. American drones are killing civilians at a rate never seen before and across the skies of more countries than his predecessor. Whilst he has brought some troops home from Iraq, thousands remain and the war in Afghanistan rages on with no victory in sight.

3. He has also shown contempt for the constitution by involving America in the war in Libya without allowing Congress to vote on his decision.

4. He has kept the emergency powers which were enacted after 9.11 and which have seemingly placed America under a semi dictatorship in which the rule of law has been abolished in favour of executive orders. This can be clearly seen in the recent National Defense Authorization Act which took America one step further towards tyranny with the White Houses insistence that the indefinite detention of battlefield combatants applied to American citizens

5. He has not kept his pre-election promises to restore America's standing in the world by closing Gitmo, ending the extraordinary rendition of suspects and acting as a fair and unbiased facilitator of talks between Israel and Palestine.

6. He has failed to prosecute anyone in the previous administration for crimes against the American people and the countries they went to war against. He has not investigated the events of 9.11 which still remain the catalyst for the transformation of America into the militarised Police state it has become and he has chosen to continue the worst of the Bush era excesses even extending them or putting them into law such as the execution of American citizens on the Presidents command alone. Drones are now flying the skies of America and not a week goes by without another story of brutality by the hands of the Robocops who patrol US streets pepper spraying students and grannies and shooting unarmed people in the back on camera.

7. He has failed to reform health care in a way that satisfied Liberals or Conservatives. Instead of introducing a system that would have enabled free health care at the point of use for all Americans through a national insurance scheme he has instead pushed through an unconstitutional bill that forces people to buy insurance from private companies. The insurance companies are happy as they now have a market place full of people forced to buy their product and he hasn't solved the problem that there still remains millions of Americans who are uninsured.

8. He has allowed Wall Street to carry on with their high frequency trading and front running and his reforms are weak at most and will do nothing to solve the underlying problems that caused the financial meltdown in the first place. Instead of putting the banksters in jail he has continued to bail them out and the Treasury, FED and bankster operations are still engaged in a revolving door process which ensures the American tax payer foots the bill for the excesses, crimes and mistakes of a few.

9. He has allowed the national debt to rise to stupendous levels whilst doing nothing but massaging the jobless figures to make it look like the US economy is getting better. As more people leave the workforce permanently due to jobs disappearing offshore and the FED's continuation of quantitative easing the purchasing power of the dollar in your pocket weakens month by month. It can legitimately be claimed that Obama has engaged the American nation in yet another war, although this currency war is fought with Credit Default Swaps, the printing of money and a race to the bottom. The huge amounts of American debt owned by China is now being re-invested as China starts buying up companies across the world.

10.  Despite claims to the contrary by people just itching to bend over backwards to support Israel in every way possible, Obama has kept AIPAC and the pro-Israel lobby happy by:
  • promising to wield his UN veto over Palestinian statehood.
  • helping Israel in their covert war against Iran with the Stuxnet virus and support of Iranian terrorist groups.
  • sent large numbers of US Navy ships to the Straits of Hormuz.
  • promised to help Israel in any war with Iran as long as they agree on a plan first.
  • spent billions of US taxpayers money giving military hardware to Israel in return for a short delay in their illegal settlement building programme.
  • and of course he has had to bite his tongue more times than he can count whilst the Israeli PM belittled and lectured him in public and private.

And that is just a list from the top of my head. I'm sure my American readers can provide many more examples of all the illiberal laws and regulations that the Obama administration has brought in over the last three years.

So lets not quibble with semantics, Obama is not a liberal in any sense of the word especially when compared with true liberals who are pro-constitutional freedoms, against wars drummed up in the press through lies and special interests, against the government telling the people how to live their lives, who to sleep with, what to eat, drink and smoke and against special interests foreign and domestic dictating policy and law.

Therefore we are faced with the prospect of a non liberal democrat facing off against a liberal conservative like Romney, a hypocritical borderline lunatic like Gingrich or a religious conservative like Santorum.

If I had a choice like that I think I would be ticking the "none of the above" box.

Sunday 5 February 2012

Has our own hypocrisy at the UN prevented proper censure of Syrian atrocities?

By Dark Politricks

As most people will know waking up today to the morning newspapers and TV shows yesterday saw both a massacre in the Syrian city of Homs and a vote at the UN which was vetoed by both Russia and China which condemned the Assad regime.

The attack on the city of Homs was blamed by many mainstream and pro western news outlets as being an attack by government forces which the Assad regime denies claiming that many of the dead displayed in TV pictures were:
“dead ... civilians, including images of satellite broadcast television networks, were people who kidnapped and killed by gunmen,”
and that the aim behind the propaganda was to influence the upcoming vote at the UN through a "hysterical campaign of incitement" by armed gangs - Sana News Agency.

Was it just a co-incidence that the massacre in Homs occurred just before an important Security Council UN vote on the worsening situation in Syria or did the Syrian government know that the Russians and Chinese would veto any vote no matter how villanous it acted in the preceeding days?

Did it really want the worlds condemnation and a billion fingers pointed it's way at the very same time the whole world was looking at the UN's vote on it's behaviour?

Maybe a cynic would claim that the massacre was a way to "persuade" the Russians and Chinese who have been negotiating the wording of the bill for most of the week to vote with the rest of the security council.

If they vetoed the bill it would make them look like the bad guys they are currently being painted as by the western media and if they abstained then the resolution would pass. Maybe the attack in Homs was a helpful reminder to urge them to "do the right thing" so to speak.

The USA and UK who have been pushing for a hard stance to be taken against Syria in the UN certainly didn't waste any time in attacking the Russian and Chinese decision to veto their resolution with the U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice claiming that Washington was "disgusted" with the vetoes and the British ambassador to the U.N. Mark Lyall Grant saying that Russia and China have turned their backs on the Arab world to support tyranny.

Russia said the resolution was biased and would promote "regime change" and the wording of the resolution undoubtedly bears this out as it urged Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to give up power. The Russians have declared all week in pre-vote talks that they want to see an end to the conflict but in a way that does place blame on either the Assad regime or the Saudi/Western backed rebels/terrorists fighting it.

Whatever the truth behind the Homs attack it is clear that the UN is nothing more than a worthless institution that is used by all sides to push forward their own foreign policy objectives.

Not only has the UN been used by Western nations to allow wars such as those in Iraq and Lybia to go ahead with some sense of legitimacy it has long been used by certain powers such as the USA with Israel and seemingly Russia with Syria, to allow countries they are allied with to carry on unimpeded with internal acts that many across the world would like to see stopped.

It cannot be stated enough that we in the West have lost much of any moral superiority we might have liked to believe we carried through our own hypocrisy. This has seen us point the finger at undoubtedly nasty regimes and the acts carried out by them, but at the same time either carrying out those same acts ourselves or allowing allies to do the very same things we condemn in others.

The last ten years have seen our war on terror diminish much of our moral standing in the world by:
  • Allowing the 9.11 attacks, which were cooked up in Germany and the US and carried out by mainly Saudi Arabians to be used a pretext for a decade of war on other, poorer countries.
  • Using the same attacks as justification for extraordinary rendition of suspects, literally kidnapped off the streets of many cities including those in Europe and bundled off to black site jails to be tortured or killed.
  • Buying prisoners off warlords and groups many countries would not hesitate in labeling as "terrorist" in nature, many of which who had no links to al-Qaeda or the Taliban and treating them the same as enemy soldiers caught in combat. Some of these purchases still remain in Gitmo prison today helping fuel any recruitment drive by those that already hate us.
  • Attacking countries such as Iran, Egypt, Libya and Syria for suppressing protesters and critics of  the regime whilst allowing allies such as Saudi Arabia and Bahrain to carry out the same brutal crack downs whilst all the time selling arms to them.
  • Lecturing countries such as China and Iran for their police state nature whilst at the same implementing a similar regime step by step at home. From Internet Censorship to the police forcefully crushing all forms of dissent and free speech we have seen the USA slowly morph from the home of the free to one in which your door can be knocked down at any time and you could join fellow orange jump-suited prisoners at Gitmo.
  • Through acts like the NDAA and the very un-patriotic PATRIOT ACT. Forever a misnomer of Orwellian proportions if ever one existed, the cogs of oppression have slowly turned the screws on the American citizenry rendering their Bill of Rights and Constitution almost worthless.
And many more misdeeds could be listed as well which have tainted the declining sole super-powers image as leader of the "free" world in the eyes of many.

However when it comes to the UN, the USA's insistence on using it's veto power to protect it's ally, friend and often political paymaster Israel from facing any censure or punishment for the many acts it has carried out on the Palestinian people has undermined any, if not all of the sentiment carried in Susan's Rice disgust at the recent Russians veto on Syria.

From Operation Cast Lead to the war in Lebanon and it's policy of targeted assassination which at times included US citizens as well as Hamas and Hezbollah members to the recent attempt by Palestine to gain statehood - there have been many UN resolutions tabled and voted on which had the aim of reigning in Israeli excesses and human rights abuses.

Those "excesses" included the Goldstone Report into the Gaza war that left over a 1,400 people dead, many of which were women and children. Operation Cast Lead also saw the illegal use of banned weapons including white phosphorus in densely populated civilian areas as well as summary executions and the international crime of targeting a civilian population who had no-where to hide.

Even though much of the international community were outraged at these attacks the political ties that bind Israel and the USA together insured that no action was taken, and even saw the US Congress almost unite in attacking the report as biased and anti-Israeli slander.

So for the USA to attack to Russia is hypocrisy in the very least and no matter how much we may despise the Assad regime it is clear that Russia is trying to prevent another UN excuse for a "no fly zone" such as the one they were cajouled into supporting in Libya last year.

They already feel let down by their support for that resolution which was supposed to ensure Gaddafi couldn't use it's air force to attack his citizens but instead turned into an excuse for regime change and the chaos which we are now seeing. This organised chaos includes extra judicial executions, rape and torture by the rebels and terrorists we have helped to install in power after using NATO air-power to other-throw the previous Gaddafi regime.

There is no doubt Russia has close ties with Syria and with its naval base on the Mediterranean at Tartus it would not like to see a post Assad regime installed that may be less stable than the current one as in post dictatorship Iraq or  Libya. They also don't want to lose an important ally and arms purchaser.

There is also no question that China and Russia both like to stay out of other countries internal affairs and have always shy'ed away from supporting UN resolutions that have supported wars or regime change and often Western foreign policy objectives at the same time.

However the key point to remember is that we in the west have to realise that we are no longer in any position to take the moral high ground when it comes to lecturing others on their global positions and any UN votes backing those positions.

If we are to lecture others on their failings and their lack of support in respect to human rights or their authoritarian regimes we must be whiter than white ourselves and hold and keep the same respect for human rights we demand so often in others.

Most of all we must not be hypocritical when it comes to UN votes by using the veto so often ourselves to protect allies like Israel as in doing so we have lost all moral legitimacy to attack other nations when they do the same for their own allies.

I hope the people of Syria manage to find a solution to their internal problems that doesn't remain so bloody and violent in nature but I also wish other nations would stop meddling in the affairs of others. We would do well to take our own advice sometimes.