Christmas In Liberated Aleppo

It’s been just over one year since the liberation of Aleppo from radical Islamist insurgent groups which were backed by the West as well as Gulf states like Saudi Arabia and Qatar. And this Christmas has witnessed huge public celebrations, tree lightings, concerts, and dances in a city which only a short while ago was associated with death, mortars, airstrikes, assassinations, and suicide bombings.
Though occasional mortar fire and explosions still enter the city environs, Christmas 2017 has been marked by carefree exuberance and and a sense of relief as the city rebuilds, and as some 600,000 displaced residents return to reclaim properties and possessions, ready to resume their normal lives again.
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Christmas tree in Aziziya square on the first anniversary of Aleppo’s liberation, via Syrian social media.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Dec 25, 2017.

What Happened to Protest Art?

In September 1975, The Grateful Dead released what was to become its highest chart-topping album for the next twelve years, Blues for Allah. In an interview at the time, the group’s lyricist, Robert Hunter, described the album’s title song as ‘a requiem for King Faisal of Saudi Arabia, a progressive, democratically-inclined ruler (and incidentally a fan of the Grateful Dead) whose assassination in 1975 shocked us personally.’ Hunter went on to note proudly that the lyrics of the album, inspired as it was as much by Bach as by Eastern influences, were printed in Arabic on the back of album.
This remarkable, trance-like title track referenced Biblical prophecy, Ozymanides, and A Thousand and One Nights. But most of all, it brought attention to the death of one of the Middle East’s then-universally acknowledged enlightened rulers who disdained excess displays of wealth and who opened the first schools for female students in the country. The construction of this vast, progressive-rock tone-poem is a straight line of discursive guitar themes later superimposed by poignant, haunting vocals. It includes two sections, ‘Sand Castles and Glass Camels’ and ‘Unusual Occurrences in the Desert’, in which powerful political statements were woven into the artistry. ‘What good is spilling blood?/It will not change a thing’, observes one line; another is a plea for a resolution of Muslim/Jewish conflict: ‘Let us meet as Friends/the Flower of Islam/the Fruit of Abraham’. Prophesizing the geopolitics of the region, the song grimly warns: ‘The ships of state sail on mirage/and drown in sand.’
Such compelling protest art could have been written today in view of the interminable geopolitical situation in the Mideast. Yet, it hasn’t been, and it won’t be. We are bereft of any near equivalent; the integrating instinct of music, politics and passion nowhere present, nowhere promoted. Certainly, there is no shortage of ‘unusual occurrences in the desert’ – or anywhere else for that matter – to inspire truly creative works of radical brilliance. Yet none of that kind of meaningful protest that defined the eras of the late sixties and the entirety of the seventies is to be found in our current rock/popular music groups. Why? How have we missed this? Where were the songs to protest the 2003 invasion of Iraq? Where are the poignant ballads against the spread of terror or the failures of the so-called ‘War on Terror’? The sixteen-year occupation of Afghanistan? The high rates of American soldier-suicides? Consider the power-lyrics of Vietnam-era anti-war works by such groups as Buffalo Springfield or as found in Joan Baez’s ‘Where Are You Now, My Son?’ (‘Yours was the righteous gun/where are you now, my son?’). Why are we incapable of this? Where are the artists of impact and deep intelligence to make sense of a world in which the irrational is the new and newer normal? Must we only be satisfied with Pearl Jam performing a bland cover of Bob Dylan’s ‘Master of War’? Are we just to accept that these talented groups cannot come up with meaningful statements of their own?

This post was published at Ludwig von Mises Institute on December 25, 2017.

Saudi Airstrikes Kill 48 Yemeni Civilians In 24 Hours

At least 48 Yemeni civilians have been killed by the Saudi Coalition in the last 24 hours, the Saba News Agency reported. “A total of 48 civilians, including women and children, were killed and wounded in 51 airstrikes launched by US-backed Saudi-led aggression coalition using internationally banned weapons on several Yemeni provinces over the past few hours, military and security officials told Saba on Sunday,” the news agency reported.
The Saudi airstrikes were primarily concentrated on the northern part of the country, where the Houthis currently control several provinces. In addition to northern Yemen, the Saudi airstrikes were also targeted the western part of the country, including the Hodeidah Port that was finally reopened after being blockaded for several weeks.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Dec 24, 2017.

Pakistan Opens Fire Along Border Killing Indian Troops, Warns “Nuclear War Cannot Be Ruled Out”

With most of the Western hemisphere on holiday, another crisis appears to be developing on the India – Pakistan border known as the Line of Control (LoC). The incident started on Saturday, where at least four Indian soldiers were killed, in an exchange of fire with the Pakistani Army on the Line of Control (LoC) dividing Kashmir, ABC News reported.
The two sides reportedly exchanged heavy fire in the Keri sector of the Rajouri district, about 222 km southwest of Srinagar city, the summer capital of the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir.


This post was published at Zero Hedge on Dec 24, 2017.

Trump Saved St. Pete’s Because He Wants A Piece Of The Syrian Pie

Authored by Andrew Korybko via Oriental Review,
Trump saved St. Petersburg after the CIA tipped off the FSB about an impending terrorist attack there.
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Russia immediately acted on the information and arrested several terrorist suspects who were said to be plotting an attack on the famous Kazan Cathedral, and President Putin was so grateful for the many lives that were saved as a result of this joint cooperation between the two Great Powers that he even called Trump and extended his personal thanks to the CIA and its Director.
This was a model-breaking moment for some because it shattered their worldview of the US, Trump, and especially the CIA as inherently evil forces obsessed with plotting against Russia.
That’s not to say that these three are angels, but just that the pursuit of their interests can sometimes take surprising forms such as the recent example of high-profile anti-terrorist cooperation with Russia that was so useful to Moscow that President Putin felt obliged to thank the CIA, something which would have otherwise been unthinkable for the former head of the FSB to do in the presently tense atmosphere of the New Cold War.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Dec 23, 2017.

US Military Issues Alert After Discovering North Korean Propaganda On American Bases

U. S. Forces Korea, a sub-unified command of the United States Pacific Command, has issued a warning to servicemembers on the Korean Peninsula to stay vigilant for ‘insider threats’ after North Korean propaganda surfaced on American military bases.

According to Stripes.com, the 8th Army reported that a ‘significant number of North Korean propaganda leaflets and CDs’ were found at Seoul’s Yongsan Garrison, on Thursday. This prompted military officials to release a Facebook alert, warning US soldiers to ‘maintain situational awareness,’ since a number of foreign nationals have access to US military bases, which they could be viewed as ‘potential insider threats.’

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Dec 23, 2017.

Vegas Massacre Victims Must Wait A Year For More Clues About Shooter’s Motive

The FBI and Las Vegas Police Department seemingly left no stone unturned in their quest to ascertain exactly why 64-year-old Stephen Paddock – a multimillionaire real-estate investor and video-poker aficionado – decided to carry out the deadliest mass shooting in US history.
Investigators raided Paddock’s homes, interrogated his siblings and longtime girlfriend – whom he had reportedly ‘sent away’ on a trip abroad before committing his horrible crime – scrutinized his finances and interviewed employees at the casinos where he regularly was comped rooms and other luxuries, perks of his high-roller status.
Still, many details remain unclear. The official timeline of events was changed several times, and there’s still some doubt as to whether Paddock shot security guard Jesus Campos – the first person to alert authorities to Paddock’s whereabouts – before or after he opened fire on an unsuspecting crowd of country music fans. Authorities insist they have found no evidence to suggest that Paddock had help in carrying out his assault.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Dec 22, 2017.

Putin Warns “Russia Has Right To Respond” To US Military Buildup, Hints At Use Of Nuclear Weapons

Multiple Russian state media outlets are reporting that President Vladimir Putin has stressed that Russia has a right to respond to US military build-up in Europe while furthering its strategic nuclear deterrence capabilities in a speech delivered before a Defense Ministry meeting on Friday in the city of Balashikha outside of Moscow.
At the same meeting Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said that NATO has doubled the number of its military drills since 2012 in the vicinity of Russia’s borders, noting that Russia is carefully monitoring what it considers hostile NATO build-up and intensified surveillance operations along Russian borders. The defense minister further indicated that the number of NATO-member country troops stationed near Russian borders has tripled, growing from 10 to 40 thousand in three years, saying “In the Baltic states and Poland, four battalion-tactical groups, an armored brigade of the US Army, headquarters of NATO multinational divisions in Poland and Romania are deployed.”

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Dec 22, 2017.

The Fight For Syria’s Last Al Qaeda Holdout: Russian Jets Launch Nonstop Airstrikes Over Idlib

The Russian Aerospace Forces launched a large number of airstrikes over the southern countryside of the Idlib Governorate overnight on Thursday, targeting the positions of Hayat Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS/al-Nusrah) around the town of Abu Dali. Russian jets flying out of the Hmaymim Military Airbase began their attack by launching airstrikes over the towns of Abu Dali and Musharifah.
Not long after launching this attack, the Syrian Army was able to overwhelm the jihadist rebels of Hayat Tahrir Al-Sham that were attempting to defend the town; they would then retreat before their entire front-line collapsed.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Dec 22, 2017.

‘There Was A Helicopter Above Us Shooting’: Bombshell New Eyewitness Testimony From Las Vegas Massacre Survivors Revealed

While many independent researchers have attempted to prove that helicopters were indeed used during the horrific Las Vegas Massacre, eyewitness testimony itself has also pointed to this stunning fact.
Now, a new set of eyewitness reports, published on YouTube by Time Magazine, is once again fueling the widespread belief that helicopters were indeed involved in the attack.
Kelly Moore was one of the survivors of the October 1st Harvest Music Festival massacre and her testimony during the Time interview clearly points to helicopters possibly being used. Keep in mind this is on top of all the other witnesses who have described very similar things.
‘I almost felt like there was a helicopter above us shooting,’ Moore explained. ‘It was so bizarre like a war sound.’

This post was published at shtfplan on December 21st, 2017.

Kim Orders Military To Test Anthrax: North Korea Will ‘Take Revenge’ On US

The leader of North Korea, Kim Jong-Un has said he will take revenge on the United States for Washington’s accusal that the rogue regime was responsible for the WannaCry ransomware attack earlier this year. In timely fashion, Kim has also ordered his military to begin the testing of the chemical agent anthrax.
North Korea has been loading anthrax into int’s controversial ballistic missiles. But the regime and military scientists have been trying to ensure that anthrax would survive the high temperatures generated when the missiles re-enter the Earth’s atmosphere. Anthrax is a serious infectious disease caused by gram-positive, rod-shaped bacteria known as Bacillus anthracis. The regime today rejected the claim as ‘groundless’ and insisted it was fulfilling its obligations under the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) which prohibits the production or stockpile of biowarfare weapons.
North Korean state television reported last month the launch of a new intercontinental ballistic missile, Hwasong 15, which is a nuclear-capable weapon which could fly as far as America.

This post was published at shtfplan on December 21st, 2017.

American Leaker Warns: The US Is ‘Close To Nuclear Armageddon’

Daniel Ellsberg, the man who leaked the Pentagon papers which exposed the government’s lies during the Vietnam war is vocalizing a warning. He says the United States is really close to a nuclear Armageddon.
Ellsberg, now 86-years-old, leaked the Pentagon papers back in 1969 and he’s now got a new book out which serves a warning to those who care to listen. According to the Daily Mail, Ellsberg’s 7,000-page report was the WikiLeaks disclosure of its time, a sensational breach of government confidentiality that shook Richard Nixon’s presidency and prompted a Supreme Court fight that was supposed to advance press freedom.
In his new book, The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner, Ellsberg details how easy nuclear bombs can be triggered and shot off on a false alarm – and that the president isn’t the only who can launch the nukes, as we are often told. Low-level military commanders are capable of launching nuclear weapons too.
‘All out-nuclear war – an irreversible, unprecedented and almost unimaginable calamity for civilization and most life on earth – has been, like the disasters of Chernobyl, Katrina, the Gulf oil spill, Fukushima Daiichi, and before these, World War I, a catastrophe waiting to happen, on a scale infinitely greater than any of these,’ writes Ellsberg in his new book.

This post was published at shtfplan on December 19th, 2017.

HEAVILY ARMORED COMPANY OF UNITED NATIONS VEHICLES STAGED BEHIND A MARYLAND WAREHOUSE, READY FOR ‘RAPID DOMESTIC DEPLOYMENT’

What are all these heavily armored United Nations vehicles and pieces of equipment doing parked behind a warehouse in Maryland?
HAGERSTOWN (INTELLIHUB) – Over 50 heavily armored United Nations vehicles and various pieces of equipment (generators, etc.) sufficient enough to support a small company of ‘peacekeeper’ troops are sitting on the deck behind a U. S. government-owned warehouse and appear to be ready for some type of rapid domestic deployment.
The vehicles are parked in the rear parking lot of a warehouse building located at 11841 New Gate Blvd. They are all painted white and bear the letters ‘U. N.’

This post was published at The Daily Sheeple on DECEMBER 19, 2017.

Putin Stockpiles Nukes And Tanks Ahead Of WW3: ‘The Main Target….Is The US’

Russian president Vladimir Putin is bracing himself and his country for a third world war by stockpiling tanks and nuclear weapons. Russia has also carried out joint military drills with China, Russia admitted the main target of the joint exercise is the United States.
As tensions around the globe rise to almost intolerable levels, some nations are preparing to take the United State’s place on the top as a military superpower. The country’s Defence Ministry will prioritize the stockpiling of nukes, tanks, and army hardware until 2027. But this isn’t the first time Putin has decided to stockpile weapons of mass destruction. In 2016, the Daily Beast reported that as Barack Obama disarmed the United States’ nuclear weapons, Putin added more.
Russia will also expand, modernize, and upgrade their underground bunkers in preparation for a devastating third world war. Russia is fortifying the underground facilities for command and control during a nuclear conflict. One official said the alarming expansion indicates Russia is preparing to break out of current nuclear forces constraints under arms treaties, including the 2010 New START and 1987 Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaties. Russia has since violated the INF accord by testing an illegal ground-launched cruise missile.

This post was published at shtfplan on December 19th, 2017.

NATO Crisis: Germany’s Entire Submarine Fleet Is Paralyzed

Throughout 2017, America’s control of NATO policymaking has become more evident than ever, with the sole objective of war-making against Russia. NATO and Russia continue to build up arms, equipment, and troops along the eastern region of Europe, but there is a new development that has NATO worried.
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Germany’s operational readiness of its entire submarine fleet is dead in the water.
Yes, you heard that correctly, Germany’s prized submarines are currently on maintenance calls or in desperate need of repairs.
On October 15, Germany lost the last of its submarines when the Type 212a vessel was performing a diving maneuver off the Norweigan coast when it suffered a catastrophic blow to one of its four fins after the submarine struck a boulder. The submarine was quickly rendered not operational and had to be towed back to the German port of Kiel for maintenance work.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Dec 19, 2017.

The search for pure ideals in politics

Al Gore was pure. George W Bush was a monster. John Kerry was pure. Bush was still a monster. John McCain and Mitt Romney were monsters. Barack Obama was pure. Trump is pure. Hillary is a monster. Round and round it goes.
Reverse the labels, turn them upside down, inside out, and you arrive at the same dead-end alley at midnight: none of the big-time pols are pure. Far from it.
Yesterday I posted my article on some of the upsides and downsides of Trump. Today, let’s take just a brief small peek at Obama.
Obama was close to purity, ‘though some of his policies may have been wrong headed.’ Really?
The leftist Guardian (1/9/17): ‘In 2016, US special [military] operators could be found in 70% of the world’s nations, 138 countries – a staggering jump of 130% since the days of the Bush administration.’
‘…in 2016 alone, the Obama administration dropped at least 26,171 bombs. This means that every day last year, the US military blasted combatants or civilians overseas with 72 bombs; that’s three bombs every hour, 24 hours a day.’
‘As drone-warrior-in-chief, he [Obama] spread the use of drones outside the declared battlefields of Afghanistan and Iraq, mainly to Pakistan and Yemen. Obama authorized over 10 times more drone strikes than George W Bush, and automatically painted all males of military age in these regions as combatants, making them fair game for remote controlled killing.’
The champ of bombing. But ‘pure.’

This post was published at Jon Rappoport on December 18, 2017.

Is the Coming DHS Biowarfare test on U.S. Citizens a False-Flag Warning?

The town of Newkirk, Oklahoma is about to receive a series of ‘gifts’ from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)…in the form of exposing the town to chemical agents. The purpose is to see how much protection is offered by houses and apartments against a bioweapon. It is also to see how first responders will be able to evacuate people and treat those in affected areas.
An article written on 12/16/17 by Jay Syrmopoulos for Activist Post entitled Residents Outraged as DHS Spraying Town With Chemicals – Using Them as Human Guinea Pigs, covers all of the details. Let’s be clear: these are not weapons of biowarfare being tested, but substances that will mimic the spread and ‘adhesion’ to buildings and materials; however, they are used specifically to assess biowarfare capabilities of an actual agent released or delivered. One of the chemicals is a pesticide named Dipel, among other ‘niceties’ such as titanium dioxide, fluorescent brightener, and urea. Here’s an excerpt to illustrate the government mindset on this testing, scheduled to commence in January:
‘I’m really sorry that everyone is so afraid in Newkirk because these are very benign products,’ Kitty Cardwell, a professor at Oklahoma State University and director of the National Institute of Microbial Forensics for Food and Agricultural Biosecurity, who has been involved in other Homeland Security projects, told Newsweek.
Cardwell believes the chemicals are non-toxic at that minuscule amount and likely wouldn’t reach populated areas.
Interestingly, while Cardwell and the U. S. government claim the chemicals used in the testing won’t adversely impact human health or the environment, the EU has proposed to classify titanium dioxide as a carcinogen – meaning that it is suspected of causing cancer – specifically when inhaled.’

This post was published at shtfplan on December 18th, 2017.

A Handy Summary of Incongruities About 9/11

Lew Rockwell ran a detailed article on these incongruities. It originally appeared on the Collective Evolution site.
The article makes a claim that half of Americans don’t believe the official story. This is certainly good news. It indicates that people are not so easily suckered. But something in the same percentage range applies also to Kennedy’s assassination. Within a year of the assassination, Mark Lane wrote his book debunking the Warren Commission report, and there have been hundreds of books since then that have been equally skeptical. This is not something new.
In contrast, the percentage of Americans who believe Franklin Roosevelt’s version of Pearl Harbor, which he delivered to Congress in his speech on December 8, 1941, remains high. Revisionist historians began going to work on the official story as early as 1946. But, even today, American history textbooks give no indication that the official story has always had gigantic holes in it. These holes have not been successfully patched. They have simply been ignored. Universities don’t teach anything except the official party line. In this respect, there has been an extraordinarily effective barrier to the truth regarding Pearl Harbor from the day after it took place.
The article on 9/11 contains lots of valuable information on the famous event. There are lots of such summaries online. There are lots of skeptical videos. A cursory examination of half a dozen of these exposs leads the typical person to conclude that there is no way that the official story that the government has pushed could possibly be true. The problem is this: there is nothing like a coherent alternative to the official narrative. We are back to the age-old problem: you can’t beat something with nothing.
THE VIETNAM WAR
There has been a fundamental change in public opinion ever since the Vietnam War. When young people began to turn against Lyndon Johnson when they began to get drafted to fight in that war, there was a loss of confidence in the federal government. The victims of conscription began to figure out that the official justifications of the war were illegitimate. This made them question the narrative regarding the 1964 Gulf of Tonkin and the supposed attack on American ships by the North Vietnamese. We know now that the story really was fake news.

This post was published at Gary North on December 18, 2017.

WW3: China Mobilizes Military, Warns Of War With North Korea By March

A top Chinese general has warned that a war with North Korea could break out anytime. Because of the possibility of another world war by March, the general is suggesting the Chinese military mobilized their troops on the border with North Korea.
To prepare for a conflict that could break out anytime between now and March, Lieutenant General Wang Gongguang claims that China should mobilize their military might sooner rather than later. The Global Times, the English-language outlet of the Beijing government’s state-run mouthpiece People’s Daily China, reports the official is warning of the need to be ‘mentally prepared for [war] anytime’.
‘China should be psychologically prepared for a potential Korean War, and the Northeast China regions should be mobilized for that,’ said General Wang. He is also urging the deployment of antimissile systems and troops in the border area with North Korea in anticipation of conflict between North and South Korea, and others such as Japan and the United States.

This post was published at shtfplan on December 18th, 2017.

The FBI Is an Enemy of Freedom

Former FBI special agent Clint Watts has responded to tweets from President Trump critical of the FBI by branding the president an ‘enemy of the state.’ Watts claims Trump’s tweets will ‘sow doubt’ and ‘hurt’ the abilities of the FBI, ‘so he is an enemy of the state whenever he is pushing against the FBI in that way,’ he concluded.
With the possible exception of the BATFE, it would be hard to imagine an entity within the federal government more out of control and in need of – dare I say it? – abolition. Getting rid of the FBI would be a giant boon for the freedom of the American people. As President Harry S. Truman put it, ‘We want no Gestapo or secret police. The FBI is tending in that direction.’
For its entire existence the FBI has served as the strong arm of the federal government. Beginning in 1909 as the Bureau of Investigation, no one’s life, liberty, or property has been safe since. Ostensibly created to investigate anarchists, bootleggers, kidnappers, bank robbers, crimes on federal property, and later, the KKK, the FBI would soon find its true calling: political repression, personal destruction, and terror.
Communists, real and imagined, were the first to find themselves under the FBI’s ominous glare. World War II provided an opportunity for the FBI to serve a legitimate role, by investigating acts of espionage, but that would take a backseat to mass arrests of innocent Japanese Americans and warrant-less searches of their property.

This post was published at Ludwig von Mises Institute on Decemer 18, 2017.