Month: May 2015

USAID Bribing Foreign Officials

Jonathan Turley writes in Information Clearing House: Congress Investigates “Slush Fund” At USAID Used To Get Lawmakers To Pass Reforms By Jonathan Turley April 16, 2014 “ICH” –  Our government has long seemed to be descending into a type of Orwellian universe of double speak. The Libyan War was not a war but a “time-limited, scope-limited military action” under Obama. Torture of detainees was not torture but “enhanced interrogation” under Bush. Now it appears open bribery of foreign officials is not bribery but “incentives” to implement policies favorable to their own people. Congressional members are moving to address what is being called a “slush fund” with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) where millions are paid to political figures in foreign countries. We have previously discussed such payments by the CIA to the openly corrupt Afghanistan government, including suitcases of cash to President Helmit Karzai. What is most interesting is that an act that is a federal crime for citizens doing business abroad can be not only legal but an official program by …

On wounded soldiers: “It is the business of soldiers to be killed”…

Ann Jones is the author of “They Were Soldiers: How the Wounded Return from America’s Wars—the Untold Story.” In “The Intercept” Ann Jones writes: It is the business of soldiers to be killed, and the job of civilians to be grateful for their human sacrifice, because that’s the way God wants it, or so we have been told by famous generals, patriotic politicians, war profiteers and public relations firms under contract to the Pentagon. But American­ wars have produced masses of other, far more troublesome soldiers who instead came home with crippling physical and mental wounds. They are the subject of Paying With Their Bodies: American War and the Problem of the Disabled Veteran, a valuable history by John M. Kinder. His concern is not the multiple problems of individual disabled vets, but the capitalized Problem they collectively present to U.S. policymakers.

NATO: Destroying Libya’s water supply

From Wikipedia: ” On 19 March 2011, a multi-state coalition began a military intervention in Libya to implement United Nations Security Council Resolution 1973. …” throwing yet another Muslim Middle Eastern country into chaos and sending yet more refugees  steaming towards southern Europe. In the “Ecologist” Nafeez Ahmed writes: War crime: NATO deliberately destroyed Libya’s water infrastructure Nafeez Ahmed 14th May 2015 The military targeting of civilian infrastructure, especially of water supplies, is a war crime under the Geneva Conventions, writes Nafeez Ahmed. Yet this is precisely what NATO did in Libya, while blaming the damage on Gaddafi himself. Since then, the country’s water infrastructure – and the suffering of its people – has only deteriorated further. The deliberate destruction of a nation’s water infrastructure, with the knowledge that doing so would result in massive deaths of the population as a direct consequence, is not simply a war crime, but potentially a genocidal strategy. Numerous reports comment on the water crisis that is escalating across Libya as consumption outpaces production. Some have noted the environmental context …

Guardian: FBI Illegal Spying on Keystone Protestors

In the Guardian Paul Lewis in Washington and Adam Federman write: Tuesday 12 May 2015 06.59 EDT Revealed: FBI violated its own rules while spying on Keystone XL opponentsDocuments show for the first time how FBI agents have been closely monitoring anti-Keystone activists in violation of its guidelines. …… The FBI breached its own internal rules when it spied on campaigners against theKeystone XL pipeline, failing to get approval before it cultivated informants and opened files on individuals protesting against the construction of the pipeline in Texas, documents reveal. Internal agency documents show for the first time how FBI agents have been closely monitoring anti-Keystone activists, in violation of guidelines designed to prevent the agency from becoming unduly involved in sensitive political issues. The hugely contentious Keystone XL pipeline, which is awaiting approval from the Obama administration, would transport tar sands oil from Canada to the Texas Gulf coast. It has been strongly opposed for years by a coalition of environmental groups, including some involved in nonviolent civil disobedience who have been monitored by federal law enforcement agencies. …

WaPo editorial on Putin and Robert Parry’s response

The Washington Post is the foremost mouthpiece of the USGovt war machine. Here is an extract from a May 4th oped piece and below it Robert Parry’s respons: The Washington Post Oped (May 4th)  says: After the fall of the Soviet Union, the U.S. tried to help Russians …..Mr. Putin’s remarks reflect a deep-seated paranoia. It would be easy to dismiss this kind of rhetoric as intended for domestic consumption, an attempt to whip up support for his war adventure in Ukraine. In part, it is that. But Mr. Putin’s assertion that the West has been acting out of a desire to sunder Russia’s power and influence is a willful untruth. The fact is that thousands of Americans went to Russia hoping to help its people attain a better life. The American and Western effort over the last 25 years — to which the United States and Europe devoted billions of dollars — was aimed at helping Russia overcome the horrid legacy of Soviet communism, which left the country on its knees in 1991. It was not …