Saturday, May 18, 2019

In order to be anti-Trump you have to favor even worse endless US foreign aggression than he does. If you work in media you have to favor US regime change wars with Venezuela and Syria or you’ll lose income, disappear from guest lists-Rolling Stone, Matt Taibbi, The Liberal Embrace of War

US also backed coups against Venezuela in 2002 and 2015 when Obama ordered assassination of Venezuela Pres. Maduro. In 2002’s “regime change” attempt IMF publicly supported the US intended puppet, but the coup failed. In 2007 Venezuela withdrew from US-controlled IMF and World Bank. If you withdraw from IMF and World Bank, US will starve your citizens to death….Mrs. Clinton “has consistently endorsed starting new wars and expanding others." Foreign Policy, 7/27/2016 ….Obama’s Administration Sold More Weapons Than Any Other Since World War II,“, 1/3/17

5/17/19, Taibbi: The Liberal Embrace Of War," Rolling Stone, via Zero Hedge 

Authored by Matt Taibbi via 

“The United States has just suspended flights to Venezuela. Per the New York Times: 

“CARACAS — The United States banned all air transport with Venezuela on Wednesday over security concerns, further isolating the troubled South American nation…”… 

America has been trying for ages to topple the regime of President Nicholas Maduro, after trying for years to do the same to his predecessor, Hugo Chavez. 

The new play in the Trump era involves recognizing Juan Guaidó as president and starving and sanctioning the country. Maduro, encircled, has been resisting. 

The American commercial news landscape, in schism on domestic issues, is in lockstep here. 

Every article is seen from one angle: Venezuelans under the heel of a dictator who caused the crisis, with the only hope a “humanitarian” intervention by the United States. 

There is no other perspective. Media watchdog FAIR just released results of a study of three months of American opinion pieces. Out of 76 editorials in the New York Times, Washington Post, the “big three Sunday morning talk shows” or PBS News Hour, zero came out against the removal of Maduro. They wrote: 

[Media watchdog FAIR:] “Corporate news coverage of Venezuela can only be described as a full-scale marketing campaign for [US taxpayer funded] regime change.” 

Allowable opinion on Venezuela ranges from support for military invasion to the extreme pacifist end of the spectrum, as expressed in a February op-ed by Dr. Francisco Rodriguez and Jeffrey Sachs called An Urgent Call for Compromise in Venezuela”: 

“We strongly urge…a peaceful and negotiated transition of power [regime change] rather than a winner-take-all game of chicken…” 

So we should either remove Maduro by force, or he should leave peaceably, via negotiation. These are the [only two] options. 

After the disaster of Vietnam eons ago, American thought leaders became convinced we “lost” in Indochina because of — get this — bad PR. 

The real lesson in Vietnam should have been that people would pay any price to overthrow a hated occupying force. American think-tankers and analysts however somehow became convinced (and amazingly still are) that the problem was Walter Cronkite and the networks giving up on the war effort. 

Quietly then, over the course of decades, lobbyists pushed for changes. In the next big war, there would be no gruesome pictures of soldiers dying, no photos of coffins coming home, no pictures of civilian massacres (enforced more easily with new embedding rules), and no Cronkite-ian defeatism. 

They got all of that by the time we went into Iraq. The TV landscape by then was almost completely sterilized. Jesse Ventura and Phil Donahue were pulled from MSNBC because they opposed invasion. Networks agreed not to film coffins or death scenes. 

Yet the invasion of Iraq was a failure for the same reason Vietnam was a failure, and Libya was a failure, and Afghanistan is a failure, and Venezuela or Syria or Iran will be failures, if we get around to toppling regimes in those countries: America is incapable of understanding or respecting foreigners’ instinct for self-rule.”… 

[Ed. note: It’s not America or Americans making these decisions, it’s US elites. And it’s not just foreigners, US elites have no respect for any human beings but themselves. Often globalist and open borders in orientation, to these people the US is just a bank that finances their global military ventures. As to “self-rule,” US elites don’t allow Americans to have it. Proof if needed was how easily the Nov. 2016 election was nullified. On 7/3/1984, The Wall St. Journal Editorial Board called for open borders: “If Washington still wants to “do something” about immigration, we propose a five-word constitutional amendment: There shall be open borders."] 

(continuing): “The pattern in American interventions has been the same for ages. We are for self-determination everywhere, until such self-determination clashes with a commercial or security objective. 

A common triggering event for American-backed overthrows is a leader trying to nationalize the country’s resources. This is why we ended up replacing democratically-elected Mohammed Mossadeq with the Shah in Iran, for instance. 

Disrupting trade is also a frequent theme in these ploys, with a late-Fifties coup attempt in Indonesia or our various Cuban embargoes key examples. The plan often involves stimulating economic and political unrest in target nations as a precursor for American intervention. 

We inevitably end up propping up dictators of our own, and the too-frequent pattern now — vividly demonstrated in Iraq, Libya and Afghanistan — is puppet states collapsing and giving way to power vacuums and cycles of sectarian violence. Thanks, America! 

Opposing such policies used to be a central goal of American liberalism. No more. Since 2016, it’s been stunning to watch the purging and/or conversion of what used to be antiwar voices, to the point where Orwellian flip-flops are now routine. 

Earlier this month, onetime fierce Iraq war opponent Rachel Maddow went on TV to embrace John Bolton in a diatribe about how the poor National Security Adviser has been thwarted by Trump in efforts to topple Maduro. 

“Regardless of what you thought about John Bolton before this, his career, his track record,” Maddow said. 

“Just think about John Bolton as a human being.” 

The telecast was surreal. It was like watching Dick Cheney sing “Give Peace a Chance.” 

Bolton stood out as a bomb-humping nut even among the Bush-era functionaries who pushed us into Iraq. He’s the living embodiment of “benevolent hegemony,” an imperial plan first articulated in the nineties by neoconservatives like Bill Kristol and Robert Kagan. 

It involves forcefully overturning any regime that resisted us, to spread the wonders of the American way to, as Norman Podhoretz once put it,as many others as have the will and the ability to enjoy them.” 

When Bush gave his famed “Axis of Evil” speech about Iraq, Iran, and North Korea, Bolton — prophetically, it seemed — gave a speech called Beyond the Axis of Evil, adding Cuba, Syria and Libya to the list. 

Bolton, of course, is also on board with regime change in Venezuela, saying “this is our hemisphere.” Echoing the sentiment, Alabama Democratic Senator Doug Jones said Maduro, and his allies in Russia, need to vacate our part of the world.” 

This has all been cast as opposition to Russian support of Maduro. Maddow was ostensibly reacting to triggering news that Trump was stepping back on Venezuelan action after a chat with Vladimir Putin. 

This isn’t about Russia, however. MSNBCCNN, the New York Timesthe Washington Post were open cheering sections even when it came to endorsing Trump’s original decision to recognize Guaidó. It’s been much the same script with Syria, too, where even the faintest hint of discomfort with the idea of regime change has been excised from public view. 

The social media era has made it much easier to keep pundits in line. Propaganda is effective when it’s relentless, personal, attacking, and one-sided. The idea isn’t to debate people, but to create an “ick” factor around certain ideas, so debate is pre-empted. 

Don’t want to invade Syria? Get ready to be denounced as an Assadist. Feel ambivalent about regime change in Venezuela? You must love Putin and Maduro. 

People end up either reflexively believing these things, or afraid to deal with vitriol they’ll get if they say something off-narrative. In the media world, it’s understood that stepping out of line on Venezuela or Syria will result in being removed from TV guest lists, loss of speaking income, and other problems. 

This has effectively made intellectual objections to regime change obsolete. In the Trump era, things that not long ago aroused widespread horror — from torture to drone assassination to “rendition” to illegal surveillance to extrajudicial detention in brutal secret prisons around the world — inspire crickets now. 

A few weeks ago, the New York Times ran an exposé about Guantanamo Bay that should have been a devastating piece of journalism. It showed site officials building a hospice, because prisoners are expected to grow old and die rather than ever sniff release. One prisoner was depicted sitting gingerly in court because of “chronic rectal pain” from being routinely sodomized in CIA prisons. 

Ten years ago, Americans would have been deeply ashamed of such stories. Now, even liberals don’t care. The cause of empire [including routinely starving millions of innocent people] has been cleverly re-packaged as part of #Resistance to Trump, when in fact it’s just the same old arrogance, destined to lead to the same catastrophes. Bad policy doesn’t get better just because you don’t let people talk about it.” 


Added: “Obama’s end-of-term anti-Russian hysteria may be leading the Democratic Party into supplanting the Republicans as America’s leading pro-war party allied with neocons, liberal hawks, the CIA and the Military-Industrial Complex– in opposition to President Trump’s less belligerent approach toward Russia.”…1/24/17, Obama Bequeaths a More Dangerous World,” Robert Parry, Consortium News

Added: US “democracy” is two tier. As such, US isn’t a democracy. It’s a dictatorship or monarchy: 

What William Kristol and Robert Kagan proposed [in 1997] when helping to draft the ‘Project for the New American Century’, was a manufactured narrative that led the average citizen to believe that their security depended on elites who could explain the threats they were exposed to...a win-win solution designed to keep them believing that they needed the protection of elites. And what the elites were telling them was that the military establishment was a bulwark against chaos and the destruction of their state and the possibility that they might become subservient to non-white people. 

The West, having created a bifurcated paradigm called democracy sold it to the public as a vector capable of promoting the verity of good governance. But unfortunately, as all paradigms contain bias, the model in question went to great lengths to conceal the presence of the schism within. An upper tier and a lower tier came into existence, whereby the resolution of conflicts was subject to the veto powers of the upper tier. Soon the upper tier set about training minds in the lower-tier to shepherd the resources of the state in ways that benefited the upper-tier. Sadly, over time, the upper tier became more interested in the subject of fiscal welfare (for themselves) rather than pursuing outcomes that could serve the interests of the entire polity…. 

And as the wealth of the nation continued its rise upwards, the lower tier showed signs that something had become unsustainable. The top-heaviness of the unequal economic order had begun to impact unfavourably on the lower tier.”…May 17, 2019, “Fake Has Become Realer Than Real And The Dogs Of War Are There To Keep It That Way,” Denis A. Conroy, The Saker blog

Image from The Technocratic Tyranny, published 2/27/2016, “State Department’s Mission: Coup d’etat"


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