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Is Military Spending Saving or Enslaving?

16 Jul

Michael Edwards — Activist Post: Is Military Spending Saving or Enslaving?.

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The Obama DOCTRINE: Congress Just Declared Preemptive WAR on Iran

29 Jun

Eric Blair

Activist Post

War with Iran has already been decided by the powers that be and the modern-day quasi-declaration happened last Thursday.  Using the same legislative and propaganda playbook that led to the Iraq War, the U.S. Government has just officially declared War on Iran.  Reuters reported “Congress on Thursday approved tough new unilateral sanctions aimed at squeezing Iran’s energy and banking sectors, which could also hurt companies from other countries doing business with Tehran. The House of Representatives passed the bill 408-8 and sent it to President Barack Obama for signing into law. The Senate had approved it 99-0 earlier in the day.”

Congress hasn’t officially voted for a Declaration of War since World War II.  In modern times they use creative wording in bills that authorize the broad use of force across borders in the sweeping “War on Terror.”  The Bush Doctrine of preemptively attacking countries because they may pose a threat to America in the future was universally trashed by progressives, but is alive and well under Obama, the Prince of Peace, without one dissenting vote in the Senate.  This authority is what the Obama Administration claims also gives them the legal argument to bomb sovereign countries like Pakistan.

This unilateral decision by the United States Congress comes on the heels of a 12-2 U.N. Security Council vote on June 8th to impose a “modest tightening of sanctions” against Iran. Of course, Russia and China have been assured that sanctions won’t apply to their energy needs in order to secure their votes. After the vote President Obama asserted that, “these sanctions do not close the door on diplomacy.”

However, the United States preempted this embargo vote in Congress by taking up an aggressive posture in tandem with Israel by deploying an Armada of Battleships to the Red Sea.  There are now reports from the Israeli National News that, “The Israeli Air Force recently unloaded military equipment at a Saudi Arabia base, a semi-official Iranian news agency claimed Wednesday, while a large American force has massed in Azerbaijan, which is on the northwest border of Iran.”

Now, it seems that the United States is working overtime to sell their war plans to potential allies.  CIA chief, Leon Panetta appeared on ABC’s This Week and announced that the Iranians, “have enough low-enriched uranium right now for two weapons. They do have to enrich it, fully, in order to get there. And we would estimate that if they made that decision, it would probably take a year to get there, probably another year to develop the kind of weapon delivery system in order to make that viable.”

While world leaders negotiate their piece of the Iranian pie in G8 negotiations, the multinational fear campaign has begun. Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said Sunday that a CIA warning that Iran has enough uranium to build two atomic bombs was “worrying,” and criticized Tehran’s secrecy over its nuclear program.  Gathered at the G8 Summit in Ottawa, world leaders now “fully believe” and are “worried” that a preemptive attack by Israel on Iran is inevitable.  Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi told reporters that “Iran is not guaranteeing a peaceful production of nuclear power [so] the members of the G8 are worried and believe absolutely that Israel will probably react preemptively.”

Enforcing an unprovoked embargo on a sovereign nation has been historically defined as an act of war.  Unfortunately, very few of our elected officials know or understand history and therefore overwhelmingly voted for the new sanctions.  Congressman Ron Paul (R-TX), an outspoken critic of Iran sanctions, was one of the eight house members to vote against the measure.  Here is Ron Paul from a few months ago comparing sanctions to an Act of War while discussing this bill; H.R. 2194 Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2010.
The Bush-Obama Doctrine is the rule of tyrants.  Clearly it looks like Israel and America are determined to preemptively strike Iran even though Iran has always maintained that their nuclear program is for peaceful energy production only. America has once again engaged in an Act of War on a sovereign nation that has not harmed, or even threatened to harm her.  Iran’s biggest crime appears to be sitting on a sea of crude at a time when oil-thirsty Neo-cons, who penned the Doctrine, rule the world.  The coming war with Iran will not be pretty.

CATEGORY 5 ALERT! Katrina-Trained FEMA Planning Forced Evacuations

27 Jun

Eric Blair

It has been reported that our well-oiled government is planning mass evacuations of Gulf coast cities. Sources close to the government like investigative journalist Wayne Madsen reported: “Plans are being put in place for the mandatory evacuation of New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Mandeville, Hammond, Houma, Belle Chase, Chalmette, Slidell, Biloxi, Gulfport, Pensacola, Hattiesburg, Mobile, Bay Minette, Fort Walton Beach, Panama City, Crestview, and Pascagoula.”

Council on Foreign Relations member, Matt Simmons, was quoted on June 23rd in the Washington Post, “We’re going to have to evacuate the gulf states.  Can you imagine evacuating 20 million people? . . . This story is 80 times worse than I thought.”


And to add to the growing speculation that evacuations were being planned, Coast Guard Admiral Thad Allen in a Gulf oil spill press conference on June 25th suggested that evacuation plans were underway.  He even discussed some of the logistics: “We would designate essential and non-essential personnel, and non-essential personnel would basically take shelter. Ideally, we would not do this at the same time they are trying to do an evacuation of citizens, so there’s a staging of this, and we actually would coordinate that with FEMA and the local governments.”

If Katrina was any indication of how the U.S. government handles mass evacuations, then responsible residents should begin planning their move now before they are forced to leave at gunpoint.  Remember military in the streets and “temporary” FEMA housing?  It seems clearer by the day that mass evacuations may be inevitable as several imminent threats to human health are converging with no end in sight. Experts are sounding the alarm on many fronts:

Hurricane season is rapidly approaching which will contaminate everything.
A gigantic methane bubble has been discovered which can explode.
Methane levels at 1 million times normal levels along with other dangerous toxins in the air.
Corexit dispersant is reportedly causing mass crop damage.
Oil rain has been reported in multiple Gulf coast states.

Since these health risks do not carry the immediate shock effect of a powerful Category 5 hurricane, it may be difficult to convince residents to leave the area especially with the EPA’s history of lying about air quality.  Therefore, the authorities may have to use even harsher measures to get citizens to comply with evacuation orders. And where will the government put 20 million displaced Americans?

Over the years researches have revealed that FEMA camps do in fact exist and surely they will be utilized in an event of this scale.  Government documents indicate many more have been built since the last time the U.S. government actively used them to lock up Japanese Americans in internment camps after Pearl Harbor.  Surely, FEMA will call these locations something mild like temporary “Relocation” camps to soothe the scared public.

With no viable solutions to stop the oil from gushing and the deadly toxins from leaching into all life systems, it seems the region may become a dead zone for decades to come.  Clearly, free-thinking residents must be contemplating their future along the Gulf coast as quite bleak.  For Gulf Coasters, it may be wise to evaluate relocation options now before FEMA invites you camping.

Activism in an Age of Tyranny and Terror

27 Jun

Michael Edwards
Activist Post

World tyranny is accelerating at a pace not seen since Stalin, Hitler, Mao, and Mussolini converged on the world stage.  Their regimes were history’s prime examples, but there have been countless other dictators who have flourished, leading to the unfortunate conclusion that dictatorships are the rule, not the exception.  Central to these power structures has been secrecy, intimidation, and the outlawing of basic human rights such as free speech, the right to peaceably assemble, the eradication of individuality in deference to the State, and extrajudicial arrests of their own citizens.  The G8 and G20 Summits now represent a traveling tyranny that is emulating history’s most infamous.  Activists would then be wise to consult history when developing an effective strategy to combat the increasing dehumanization.

Having landed most recently in Toronto, Canada, we can see the emergence of precedents aimed at stifling street activism.  We have secret laws where judges rule in favor of the State, total lockdown, and torture.  The arrest and torture of Charlie Veitch from The Love Police, and the denial of entry into Canada for We Are Change activist, Luke Rudkowski, marks a new phase of hot, stomping tyranny to supplant the cold, creeping variety that has been on display for at least the last 10 years.  We saw it emerge full force in Pittsburgh and it has now reached new levels of inhumanity.  Veitch is the epitome of a peaceful street activist who declares the sovereign nature of his humanity when confronting authority.  He films everything, knows his rights, and states them firmly yet politely.

It is just this type of activism that I encouraged in my October, 2009 article “Resistance is NOT Futile:  The Rise of Resistance Journalism.” I spoke about knowing your Constitutional rights, stating them firmly, and putting authority in a position of violating your civil rights in a way that no court of law could endorse.  However, in just the last 8 months since that article was posted, the laws of free speech and to peaceably assemble have been all but eradicated, and Constitutional protection is no longer available for those defined within the expanding label of “terrorist.”  In fact, much of what I had suggested in my original article is now bound to get someone arrested without recourse.  Even filming police can carry a sentence — in your own home! We see evidence of overt Fascism in The Gulf, as Coast Guard officers have become enforcers for British Petroleum, instead of protectors of the citizens affected by the tragedy.  Winding up in jail doesn’t make someone very effective, nor is it wise council to encourage an endeavor that is bound to fail.  Activism in the age of tyranny and terror must be cunning, wise, discrete, but still unflagging.  I think it is time to look at the only form of activism that has consistently worked under the type of blatant tyranny we now face on a global scale:  total non-cooperation.

In a brilliant 1996 lecture by Gene Sharp, Senior Scholar at the Albert Einstein Institution, titled, “Facing Dictatorships Realistically: Thoughts on Developing a Plan for Liberation,” addressing a conference on non-violent struggle in Cuba, he lists the power sources of tyranny:
  • Authority (or legitimacy, belief in the right of some group or person to lead and give orders).
  • Human resources (who and how many people obey and assist the power holder).
  • Skills and knowledge (what kind and to what degree these are available to the power-holder).
  • Intangible factors (religious, emotional, and belief systems).
  • Material resources (economic, financial, transportation, and communications).
  • Sanctions (or punishments, violent or nonviolent).
These power sources, Sharp suggests, are given authority by “pillars of support,” which include:
  • Religious and moral leaders.
  • All sections of the population in the case of human resources — people who cooperate, obey, and assist the regime.
  • Specialists with particular abilities and capacities in the case of skills and knowledge.
  • Acceptance of the pattern of submission and of beliefs which lead to obedience and help in the case of intangible factors.
  • Cooperation in the functioning of the financial economic, transportation, and communications system in the case of material factors.
  • Fear and submission in face of threatened punishments by the regime, and obedience by the police and military of orders to inflict repression on those who disobey or refuse to cooperate.
The act of intelligent, well-planned, non-cooperation — and encouraging the pillars of support not to cooperate with what is tantamount to their own enslavement — historically has been more effective than physically engaging the police state on their own terms.  It is tempting to react in the same manner that has brought on the oppression by fighting violence with violence.  Contrariwise, it might seem futile to face an onslaught that seems to attack from all sides at once, as we are assailed militarily, in our media, and even in our food and water.  The modern activist has to be more an artist than a battlefield warrior:  the aim is to starve the sources of power from which the tyranny derives its muscle.  This can be done; indeed has been done repeatedly throughout history.  Free humanity prevails when it stops being reactive, and instead develops its own course of action.  Invariably, that course of action first takes place by developing a mindset of defiance.  Sharp recounts exactly what has worked in the past to disintegrate oppression and restore the rights of humanity:
  • Massive shut-downs of the society, general strikes, mass stay-at-homes, defiant marches, loss of control of the economy, transportation system, and communications, slow-downs and defiance by the civil service and police, disguised disobedience or outright mutiny by the military, or other activities will increasingly undermine the dictators’ own organization and related institutions.
  • When the religious and moral leaders in the society denounce the regime as illegitimate.
  • When the masses of the people are disobeying orders and noncooperating with the dictatorship.
  • When journalists and broadcasters are defying censorship and issuing their own publications and programs.
  • When the transportation system operates only according to the needs of the democratic forces.
  • When the civil servants are ignoring the dictatorship’s policies and orders.
  • When the police refuse to arrest democratic resisters.
  • When the army has gone on strike.
We should not delude ourselves; we are some distance from actualizing the above points, but these guidelines and goals need to be established first if we are to coordinate our activism effectively to resist the quickening that is taking place.  Let us then focus on the pillars of support that give sustenance to the growing global dictatorship (our friends, our community leaders, our families), and starve this creature out of existence.

U.S. Cooperates with China for Afghanistan Resource Grab

16 Jun

Michael Edwards
Activist Post

The latest public relations stunt to shore up support for the ongoing war in Afghanistan is the “new” discovery of minerals and riches in the supposedly vast wasteland previously thought to define Afghanistan.  This PR stunt aims to convince Americans that the newest quagmire is somehow justified by the potential economic benefits. The aim of the PR ‘Scam’ is always to couch the exercise in what Americans can understand best as the altruistic belief that America only aims to bring democracy and economic freedom to the countries she invades, then perhaps take a commission for her work back to the homeland.  Because, after all, this latest treasure trove discovery will “boost the Afghan economy.”

The truth is a full 180 degrees from this public relations campaign.  America will never allow Afghanistan to benefit from her riches, having already co-opted the opium trade, in the same way that money from oil has not trickled down to the invaded Iraqis.  One can be sure that when, “The Pentagon task force has already started trying to help the Afghans set up a system to deal with mineral development,” a full-scale flotilla of pirate ships is on the way.

When we review the blueprint to The Grand Chessboard that we have been given by Zbigniew Brzezinski, we see that a key component to the endgame is controlling access to resources.  The resources at stake are truly vast:

“In that context, how America ‘manages’ Eurasia is critical.  About 75 percent of the world’s people live in Eurasia, and most of the world’s physical wealth is there as well, both in its enterprises and underneath its soil. Eurasia accounts for about 60 percent of the world’s GNP and about three fourths of the world’s known energy resources (page 30).”

This grand chess match between powerful nations vying for the rights to exploit much-needed resources requires from America, according to Brzezinski, the “exercise of decisive influence but, unlike the empires of the past, not of direct control.  This condition places a premium on geostrategic skill, on the careful, selective, and very deliberate deployment of America’s resources  on the huge Eurasian chessboard (page 34).”

Charlie Skelton Reports on The Bilderberg Group, Part 4

6 Jun

Bilderberg 2010: Between the sword and the wall

The Catalan police are refreshingly friendly. But if the time for action comes, whose side will they be on?

Catalan police Policing Bilderberg: beneath the uniforms beat human hearts Photograph: Charlie Skelton for the Guardian

The enormous bald detective in beach shorts took the camera from my wife. “Let me see.” He scrolled through the photographs, just taken, of me being detained at the campsite gates. He scrolled past, to see a photo of a limousine convoy, whooshing up the hill to Bilderberg. “I don’t like this,” he said, and waved a huge, disgruntled hand towards the conference hotel.

“Do you know how much this is costing?” asked Hannah. “Do you think the Spanish economy can afford all this?” Grimly, the enormous bald detective started deleting images of his comrades with his giant thumb. “Your opinion,” he growled, “is right.”

He handed the camera back to Hannah. “But you’ve deleted my best shots!” The detective whistled to his comrades, who were busy sniffing a jar of salted olives they had found in my car boot. He had them turn around, facing away from the camera. “Go head,” he rumbled. “Take photographs.”

What a difference a year makes. Last year in Vouliagmeni when I tried covering the 2009 Bilderberg meeting, I had Greek policemen yelling “No fotografia!” at me at every turn. I was arrested, tailed, harassed, rearrested, yelled at, bundled into squad cars, lied to, intimidated, wrestled with and hounded round Athens like I was John Dillinger.

This year, the police have been deployed in the same extraordinary numbers, but they are smiling, rolling their eyes at the rigmarole; the riot police are giving the thumbs-up to protesters and honking their horns as they come round the “awareness roundabout” at the foot of the hotel.

“The police have been laughing and chatting,” says Daniel Turon, a Spanish psycho-sociologist, here in Sitges to psycho-sociologise Bilderberg. “One of them said he had read a book about Bilderberg; another said, ‘Yes, we understand.'” The Catalan police, he says, “have a different sensibility” from what you may expect. “They are Catalan. Their minds are independent.”

Read the full report here

Coming Soon: Minority Report . . . The Reality Show

1 Jun

Editor’s Note:  We are actually funding our own enslavement.

Detecting a crime before it happens

By Bob Drogin, Los Angeles Times

Reporting from Washington —

If Bob Burns is correct, terrorists may betray themselves someday by jiggling on a Nintendo Wii balance board, blinking too fast, curling a lip like Elvis — or doing nothing at all.

Burns and his team of scientists are researching whether video game boards, biometric sensors and other high-tech devices can be used to detect distinct nonverbal cues from people who harbor “mal-intent,” or malicious intent.

“We’re looking pre-event,” said Burns, the No. 2 at the Homeland Security Advanced Research Project Agency, a counterpart of the fabled Pentagon agency that developed Stealth aircraft and the Internet.

READ THE FULL STORY

How Long Will the Silence Last?

1 Jun

America’s Complicity in Evil

By Paul Craig Roberts

As I write at 5pm on Monday, May 31, all day has passed since the early morning reports of the Israeli commando attack on the unarmed ships carrying humanitarian  aid to Gaza, and there has been no response from President Obama except to say that he needed to learn “all the facts about this morning’s tragic events” and that Israeli prime minister Netanyahu had canceled his plans to meet with him at the White House. Thus has Obama made America complicit once again in Israel’s barbaric war crimes.  Just as the US Congress voted to deep-six Judge Goldstone’s report on Israel’s war crimes committed in Israel’s January 2009 invasion of Gaza, Obama has deep-sixed Israel’s latest act of barbarism by pretending that he doesn’t know what has happened.

No one in the world will believe that Israel attacked ships in international waters carrying Israeli citizens, a Nobel Laureate, elected politicians, and noted humanitarians bringing medicines and building materials to Palestinians in Gaza, who have been living in the rubble of their homes without repairs or medicines since January 2009, without first clearing the crime with its American protector. Without America’s protection, Israel, a totally artificial state, could not exist. No one in the world will believe that America’s spy apparatus did not detect the movement of the Israeli attack force toward the aid ships in international waters in an act of piracy, killing 20, wounding 50, and kidnapping the rest.  Obama’s pretense at ignorance confirms his complicity.

Once again the US government has permitted the Israeli state to murder good people known for their moral conscience. The Israeli state has declared that anyone with a moral conscience is an enemy of Israel, and every American president except Eisenhower and Carter has agreed.

Obama’s 12-hour silence in the face of extreme barbarity is his signal to the controlled corporate media to remain on the sidelines until Israeli propaganda sets the story.

READ FULL STORY

DARPA and the (Not Too Distant) Future of Biometrics

28 May

Darpa’s Beady-Eyed Camera Spots the ‘Non-Cooperative’

Soon, keeping your head down won’t be enough to stump high-tech security cameras, thanks to Pentagon-funded researchers developing mini-cameras that can nab threats by hunting down — and scanning — their eyeballs.

A team of electrical engineers at Southern Methodist University (SMU), led by Professor Marc Christensen, first created the cameras with funding from Darpa, the Pentagon’s research agency. Called Panoptes, the devices use low-resolution sensors to create a high-res image that can be captured using a lightweight, ultra-slim camera. Because they don’t use a lens, the cameras were originally designed for miniature drone sensors and troop helmet-cams.

Only a year later, the Pentagon is giving SMU another $1.6 million, to merge the cameras with active illumination and handheld Pico projection devices. This allows photos captured on small devices to be transformed for large-format viewing. Whereas the first goal of the program was to create slim cameras with the power of a lens, the latest technology “lets us do even more than what a lens could do,” Christensen told Danger Room.

“This platform is really just the base, upon which we’ll focus on different applications,” Christensen said. “Now, we’re enhancing resolution even more, so the images are a 3-D map with even better, more accurate details.”

The new devices will yield a robust 3-D image that’ll be useful for seeing in caves and dark urban areas, and for the creation of versatile “non-cooperative” iris-detection security cameras.

Smart-Iris, the name of the new Panoptes innovation, is being developed in conjunction with SMU Professor Delores Etter, who specializes in biometric identification. It’ll eliminate problems like glare, eyelashes, dim lighting — and an unwillingness to stop and stare directly into a dedicated iris-detection camera. Instead, Panoptes devices will zero in on a face, no matter angle or movement, then narrow right into the iris. A long line of people, moving through a line, could be scanned by wall-mounted cameras and they wouldn’t even notice it was happening.

And new algorithms are being developed by Etter and colleagues to identify individuals based on segments of their iris, rather than a full frontal scan.

“Ideally, when you walk down a hallway, no matter where your head is looking, the device can grab your eyeball and detect what it needs to,” Christensen said. And where possible security and defense applications are concerned? “You can let your imagination fly with that one.”

And with this latest development, Christensen also sees widespread civilian application, as part of “the cell phone of the future.” He’d like to see the camera-projection device incorporated into phones, and says they’d be able to photograph the page of a book “down to the smallest lettering,” or detect counterfeit cash by “picking up the texture of a $20 bill.”

Photo: U.S Air Force

Read More http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2010/05/darpas-beady-eyed-camera-spots-the-non-cooperative/#ixzz0pFmjobrN

Fighting the Good Fight, Part 3

14 May

Also see PART 1 and PART 2