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Joined up thinking for the Irish Left

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offsite link Rebuilding Ireland: Long on Promise, Short on Detail Mon Aug 29, 2016 22:20 | Eoin O'Mahony

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Spirit of Contradiction

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offsite link The Case of Comrade Dallas Mon Mar 19, 2018 19:44 | Sylvia Smith

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Public Inquiry
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The Saker
A bird's eye view of the vineyard

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offsite link Iraq on the move: the Muqdata Al-Sadr Factor Sun Jun 24, 2018 19:01 | The Saker
by Ghassan and Intibah Kadi for The Saker Blog The recent developments following the 12th of May 2018 elections in Iraq put the country on a potential new course. What

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By Rostislav Ishchenko Translated by Ollie Richardson and Angelina Siard cross posted with source: June 22nd – the day the most bloody war in the history of Russia

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offsite link The Western Hijacked Democracy Fri Jun 22, 2018 14:08 | The Saker
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Guardian Initiates WikiLeaks Ass Kicking Party while Circling the Wagons to Protect its own Butt!

category international | anti-war / imperialism | news report author Monday September 05, 2011 17:46author by Ciaron - Giuseepe Conlon House, London Catholic Worker Report this post to the editors

We are ten years into a war on Aghanistan, 20 years into a war on Iraq and 250+ daze into the confinement without charge of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange who has done so much to expose the true nature of these wars. Wars that have no end date, no popular support and presently little visible opposition.

Assange remains the target of powerful forces and has been largely left hung out to dry by both the legitimate voices of dissent and those who continue to prosecute these wars and isolate and crush any resistance to them. In the U.K. a lot of this isolation can be put down to the Guardian newspaper in its role as the Pravda of the liberal left (their niche market if not their personal politics of those who run the newspaper.) The Guardian sets the party line for the liberal left on which wars to support, oppose or tolerate and which dissidents are worth our sympathy or should be abandoned to the state.

The roots of the Guardian's animosity towards Assange and WikiLeaks is not clear. Whether it is borne of class tensions (the Guardian's public schoolboy journalists dislike of a hippy kid who does not know his place), cultural disdain (an antipodean rocking the boat in London town) or an economic and status fear (journalists like being the "guardian"/ gatekeepers of secrets... along comes WikiLeaks and short circuits them...."here's the cables from the horses mouth - you work it out!"). Who knows what their motives are, but there has clearly been a vitriolic campaign by the Guardian boys against Assange, a campaign that has demobilised sectors of support as he is pursued by the forces running the war.

Last week, WikiLeaks was forced to announce that the full stock of U.S. embassy cables were already out on the internet. This was not by strategic design but a combination of actions taken at a high stress time for WikiLeaks workers (not Guardian employees) when Julian Assange was imprisoned (where the British state hope to keep him...opposing bail in December 2010). This was a time when the stress free Guardian was working on its book attacking Assange and busy selling the movie rights to Spielberg. The Guardian's book included the password that could access the remaining embassy cables that had been secretly placed on Bit Torrent by a WikiLeaks worker at this time.

Caught between a rock and hard place, WikiLeaks decided to formally announce the state of play and publish the remaining cables this past week.

In the past daze, acting to type, the Guardian have published a number of articles in the lead-up to the ruling on Assange's July 2011 High Court appeal against extradition to Sweden, which is expected some time soon.

Here the Guardian tell us that they condemn WikiLeaks. They share this condemnation with the U.S. military and the five previous media partners – the Guardian, New York Times, El Pais, Der Spiegel and Le Monde – which had previously worked with WikiLeaks publishing carefully selected and redacted documents.

Here they show how you can become a real serious journalist with a real newspaper and be taken really seriously if you jump ship......

Here they devote an editorial condemning (one more time now, with feeling!) Julian Assange and WikiLeaks

And here they rejoice that even if Julian should win his appeal, he's lost - the Australians are going to get him.....

These article are to make the liberal left in the U.K. feel relaxed and comfortable as Julian Assange is shafted in London and shunted to a U.S. prison via Stockholm or Sydney. This process mirrors the mainstream media's role throughout these long years of war, to keep us silent and sedated as the government wreak terror and destruction on the people's of Iraq and Afghanistan. The warmaking state, whether run by neocons or liberals, no longer requires our proactive suppport for their brutality inflicted on enemy poplations or domestic dissidents who have touched a nerve.

Here is some rebuttal..........

NYT on WikiLeaks: Move Along, No Atrocity to See Here
by Peter Hart

Facts and Myths in the WikiLeaks/Guardian Saga
by Glenn Greenwald

Schnews take

20 years into a war on the people of Iraq, 10 years into a war on the people of Afghanistan, with millions dead, maimed, displaced and orphaned, civil infrastructure destroyed, WikiLeaks has confronted us with the nature of this war... the ongoing butchery of civilians. The powers that be, from the masters of war to the manufacturers of consent, want us to avert our gaze.

Refuse to be distracted! View once again the collateral murder footage and refocus.

Support Bradley Manning in chains accused of leaking this footage, Julian Asssange tagged and pursued for distributing this footage and Michael Lyons presently imprisoned for refusing to deploy to Afghanistan after viewing this footage.

*** YOUTUBE (16 mins) Julian Assange conference after UK court hearing (15-Jul-11)

**YOUTUBE (4 mins) - Solidarity Singing "I Shall be Released" as Julain leaves High Court (Jul-11)

*YOUTUBE (6 mins) 'Assange Subterranean Homesick Blues'

Related Link:
author by by Paul Craig Robertspublication date Tue Sep 06, 2011 19:23Report this post to the editors

The Last Whistleblower
by Paul Craig Roberts

Bob and Darin were on a panel together discussing banalities in generalities, as is the usual case. If either had said anything meaningful on the subject, the moderator would have cut him off.

Bob didn’t know Darin. He was introduced as a former CIA official. Bob had heard back in those days when he was on the Congressional Budget Committee staff that Darin had once had a limited oversight position – budget Bob seemed to remember it was – over a black op CIA group. When the moderator closed the panel, the two looked at one another and raised their eyebrows.

Bob took advantage of the eyebrow connection to suggest that they have a drink. To his surprise Darin agreed.

Darin was remote and distant at first, but found the conversation to his liking as the two discussed the moderator’s skill in avoiding delicate issues. In an abrupt change of subject, Bob asked Darin if the US government would assassinate Julian Assange.

"Yes," Darin replied.

Bob followed up quickly with a question, which as he was asking it he realized he should not be asking: "Does the CIA have an in-house assassination group or does the agency contract it out?"

Darin replied, "The CIA doesn’t need to physically assassinate Assange. Washington will use the PATRIOT Act to override the First Amendment and bring a spy case against him. Currently, the British are going through their pretense that they have a rule of law, but if in the end law doesn’t require that the Brits extradite Assange to Sweden, whose government will sell him to Washington, Washington will bring an extradition case based on charges that are being concocted in a grand jury in Alexandria, Virginia."


author by from Tariq Alipublication date Thu Sep 08, 2011 09:03Report this post to the editors

September 7, 2011

“Grand Strategy” after 9/11
Perpetual War

‘Sovereign is he who decides on the exception,’ Carl Schmitt wrote in different times almost a century ago, when European empires and armies dominated most continents and the United States was basking underneath an isolationist sun. What the conservative theorist meant by ‘exception’ was a state of emergency, necessitated by serious economic or political cataclysms, that required a suspension of the Constitution, internal repression and war abroad.

A decade after the attentats of 9/11, the United States and its European allies are trapped in a quagmire. The events of that year were simply used as a pretext to remake the world and to punish those states that did not comply. And today while the majority of Euro-American citizens flounder in a moral desert, now unhappy with the wars, now resigned, now propagandized into differentiating what is, in effect, an overarching imperial strategy into good/bad wars, the US General Petraeus (currently commanding the CIA) tells us: “You have to recognize also that I don’t think you win this war. I think you keep fighting. It’s a little bit like Iraq, actually . . .. Yes, there has been enormous progress in Iraq. But there are still horrific attacks in Iraq, and you have to stay vigilant. You have to stay after it. This is the kind of fight we’re in for the rest of our lives and probably our kids’ lives.” Thus speaks the voice of a sovereign power, determining in this case that the exception is the rule.

Even though I did not agree with his own answer, the German philosopher, Jurgen Habermas posed an important question: ‘Does the claim to universality that we connect with human rights merely conceal a particularly subtle and deceitful instrument of Western domination?’ ‘Subtle’ could be deleted. The experiences in the occupied lands speak for themselves. Ten years on the war in Afghanistan continues, a bloody and brutal stalemate with a corrupt puppet regime whose President and family fill their pockets with ill-gotten gains and a US/NATO military incapable of defeating the insurgents. The latter now strike at will, assassinating Karzai’s corrupt sibling, knocking off his leading collaborators and targeting key NATO intelligence personnel via suicide terrorism or helicopter-downing missiles. Meanwhile, sets of protracted behind-the-scenes negotiations between the US and the neo-Taliban have been taking place for several years. The aim reveals the desperation. NATO and Karzai are desperate to recruit the Taliban to a new national government.


author by Yet again.....publication date Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:36Report this post to the editors

The Guardian newspaper's campaign against Julian Assange continues. For some reason they thought it a bright idea to get David Leigh (the author of the earlier Guardian published book attacking Assange ) to review the last week's released "Unauthorised Biography"

Some of the comments following the article are worth reading, taking the Guardian's role in the campaign against Assange to task. Someinteresting insights alrighty!

David Leigh's article

* Wikileak
26 September 2011 5:35PM

This review falls down pretty much from the off. A fair attempt in some respects, as you are clearly trying to present yourself as an honest broker of historically accurate truths, but the problem is, David, that you are far too close and indeed cinstitute events in the book, and it is the opinion of many, if not most (going by the recommendations of the responses arguing counter to you) that you are at least 50% culpable for Cablegate. Rather than engaging in the impartial, objective task of book reviewing, the fairly obvious logical goes, you are merely dissembling and using the exercise of a review, to further your own defence and distance yourself from Assange and the possible, though remote, chance of facing espionage charges in the USA.

Certainly Assange's version of events is that this is a factor in the thinking of the few high-profile journalists from the two media partners - of the 90 or so his organisation works with - who turned on him. He argues that you did so, not because of the reasons the Guardian editorial would have us believe - for truth, justice and all that - but because you acted underhandedly and decided to try and cut Assange out of the picture once you had your hands on the cables, contraveneing all three of the very simple sentences in the memorandum of understanding signed by Guardian Editor and your brother-in-law Alan Rusbridger.

Your paper in the form of Nick Davies, actively sought out Assange, courted him, got the goods and then after a few months, according to Assange, because Keller and the NYT started panicking about possible espionage charges, turned on him to distance yourself from this possibility, and you and Keller wrote articles and books on him for this very purpose, as well as to profit from, as he sees it, betraying him.

He claims that the last time he saw you with his lawyers in tow, you turned 'white as a ghost' and that you are responsible for the release of the cables into the public realm because you, contrary to all rules of cryptography, published the top-secret passphrase and salt that you begged him to give you to access the files he had stored online. You claiming you were led to believe by him that the passphrase was temporary and that the files would only be online for a short while, belie the truth of the matter, that the passphrase to an encrypted file cannot be changed. Why would he tell you lies on this? Or is it the case that you simply made a mistake, a schoolboy howler of epic proportions, and were unaware of it, not because Assange didn't, as you claim, take sensible precautions in safegurading this data, but because your own hubris and lack of technological nous led you to blunder in making an appalling mess of things and rather than own up to it, with all the attendant responsibility admitting something so globally and historically significant suggests, you choose instead to behave as you do, blaming anyone but yourself?

26 September 2011 7:56PM
Julian Assange has not been charged with anything. Yet, he has at least three well resourced prosecutors circling him
- Brisitsh
- Swedish
- servicing the most significant third - the U.S. Grand Jury.

None of these prosecutions involve a jury trial. So it seems all bets are off in terms of subjudice restrictions on the media.

For the last 10 months we have been treated to a trial by media of the character of Julian Assange. If such powers were arraigned against any of our "poisonalities"...cherry picking flippant comments to isolated actions, none of us would stand a chance.

Sensible legal advice, with these three prosecuters cricling, would be
- don't be provoked by the slander.
- and don't release an autobiography.

The Guardian has been most significant in undermining political support for Julian Assange as it has directed its liberal-left constitency to avert its gaze as the empire deals with one who has revealed it's naked barbarism in the Iraq & Afghan wars.

Whoever released these cables - Bradley Manning in chains is pleading "not guilty" - and Julian Assange have risked their life's liberty on the premise if we only knew the nature of these wars we would at least talk about them if not resist them. As Leigh points out that maybe a false premise.

Some of us, both anti-war activists and military veterans, have refused to abandon Julian Assange, Bradley Manning, Michael Lyons and others electronically tagged or jailed for nonviolently resisting the wars on the peoples of Iraq and Afghanistan. They're in trouble for us, we're on the streets for them!

YOUTUBE (6 mins) 'Assange Subterranean Homesick Blues'

author by Cult Guardian - Counterpunchpublication date Thu Sep 29, 2011 09:49Report this post to the editors

September 28, 2011
A Thought Police for the Internet Age
The Dangerous Cult of the Guardian

There could be no better proof of the revolution – care of the internet – occurring in the accessibility of information and informed commentary than the reaction of our mainstream, corporate media.

For the first time, Western publics – or at least those who can afford a computer – have a way to bypass the gatekeepers of our democracies. Data our leaders once kept tightly under wraps can now be easily searched for, as can the analyses of those not paid to turn a blind eye to the constant and compelling evidence of Western hypocrisy. Wikileaks, in particular, has rapidly eroded the traditional hierarchical systems of information dissemination.

The media – at least the supposedly leftwing component of it – should be cheering on this revolution, if not directly enabling it. And yet, mostly they are trying to co-opt, tame or subvert it. Indeed, progressive broadcasters and writers increasingly use their platforms in the mainstream to discredit and ridicule the harbingers of the new age.

A good case study is the Guardian, considered the most leftwing newspaper in Britain and rapidly acquiring cult status in the United States, where many readers tend to assume they are getting access through its pages to unvarnished truth and the full range of critical thinking on the left.

Certainly, the Guardian includes some fine reporting and occasionally insightful commentary. Possibly because it is farther from the heart of empire, it is able to provide a partial antidote to the craven coverage of the corporate-owned media in the US.

Nonetheless, it would be unwise to believe that the Guardian is therefore a free market in progressive or dissident ideas on the left. In fact, quite the contrary: the paper strictly polices what can be said and who can say it in its pages, for cynical reasons we shall come to.

Until recently, it was quite possible for readers to be blissfully unaware that there were interesting or provocative writers and thinkers who were never mentioned in the Guardian. And, before papers had online versions, the Guardian could always blame space constraints as grounds for not including a wider range of voices. That, of course, changed with the rise of the internet.

Early on, the Guardian saw the potential, as well as the threat, posed by this revolution. It responded by creating a seemingly free-for-all blog called Comment is Free to harness much of the raw energy unleashed by the internet. It recruited an army of mostly unpaid writers, activists and propagandists on both sides of the Atlantic to help brand itself as the epitome of democratic and pluralistic media.


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