At least three "respected" U.S. media outlets reported today about U.S. sanctions being levied against Syrian officials deemed possibly responsible in part for an alleged chemical attack earlier this month by the Syrian government:
Having been taken without proper investigation, reasonable confirmation, or irrefutable proof of any kind whatsoever, this punitive action is typical of what is becoming characteristically American behavior. U.S. policy drivers and media minions have mastered touting fiction as fact in effectively implementing reprehensible agendas everywhere with impunity irrespective of consequences to others.
From the 1964 Tonkin Gulf Incident(s) through Saddam Hussein's 2003 Weapons of Mass Destruction, Muammar Gaddafi's intended slaughter of civilians in 2011, and now Bashar al-Assad's alleged 2017 chemical attack in Syria, U.S. narratives appear strong on allegation, propaganda, and innuendo but short on evidence, due process, or truth.
There's nothing better to revive the "good guy, bad guy" logic and its consequent patriotism than to allege war crimes by the other side. If you are powerful enough to sell this tripe through dominant media outlets without investigation, confirmation, or hard proof, you have enormous propaganda advantage over the competition—however short-lived.
If Guatama Siddartha, the Buddha, can be believed, "Three things cannot long stay hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth".
According to RT.COM Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has noted that "now it's obvious that false information about the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government is being used to move away from implementing [U.N. Security Council] Resolution 2254, which stipulates a political settlement with the participation of all the Syrian parties, and [the western group supporting false premises] aims to switch to the long-cherished idea of regime change". We couldn't agree more.
Read our 4/14 entry below as well as its supporting links and check out recent RT posts like Assad's comments and journalist Danielle Ryan's words.
Presumably it was Julian Assange's editorial in Tuesday's Washington Post that prompted CIA Director Mike Pompeo's inane comments and judgments about Wikileaks in his speech at the Center for Strategic and International Studies on Thursday. Wikileaks founder Julian Assange noticed Pompeo's absurdities and cleverly tweeted "[We were] Called a 'non-state intelligence service' today by the 'state non-intelligence agency' which produced al-Qaeda, ISIS, Iraq, Iran & Pinochet".
In the past, when it served his purposes, Mike Pompeo has praised Wikileaks, especially for DNC-leak publications, but here's an accommodating quote from his confirmation hearings: "I have never believed that WikiLeaks was a credible source of information". What? All this despite Wikileaks' unblemished track record of publishing 100% authentic documents? Now that Mr. Pompeo is heading-up the CIA it serves his purposes to disparage Wikileaks and to censure Wikileaks activities—at least while CIA-malware-leaks unfold..
Today Wikileaks published in "Vault 7" the "Hive" trove of CIA malware "which is used by CIA implants to transfer exfiltrated information from target machines to the CIA and to receive commands from its operators to execute specific tasks on the targets". One week ago Wikileaks published the "Grasshopper" trove which appears to have been helpful to Symantec in their anti-virus and protection efforts.
According to a Symantec publication created Monday: "Spying tools and operational protocols detailed in the recent Vault 7 leak have been used in cyberattacks against at least 40 targets in 16 different countries by a group Symantec calls Longhorn. Symantec has been protecting its customers from Longhorn's tools for the past three years and has continued to track the group in order to learn more about its tools, tactics, and procedures."
Thanks to Wikileaks and its Vault 7 publications, Symantec now believes with a high degree of confidence that Longhorn and the CIA are one and the same.
While on the subject of CIA deceit let's talk briefly about Syria. On Tuesday the "White House Intelligence Report of 11 April" was released attributing the alleged chemical attack to the regime of Bashar al-Assad. That same day Professor Emeritus of Science, Technology, and National Security Policy, Theodore Postol of MIT issued a rebuttal.1 In a nutshell Professor Postol says "We again have a situation where the White House has issued an obviously false, misleading, and amateurish intelligence report". Read the first three and a half pages of "A Quick Turnaround Assessment of the White House Intelligence Report Issued on April 11, 2017, About the Nerve Agent Attack in Khan Shaykhun, Syria" and decide for yourself.
Ex CIA analyst John Kiriakou also doesn't believe a word of the official report. Here's in part what he had to say to RT.COM yesterday: "If they've already heard from their intelligence assets inside Syria - wow, they must have incredible assets inside Syria, because this [incident in Idlib] just happened. This whole story hasn't even played out yet. So, how they've already got all the intelligence and analyzed it and then were able to use the analysis to formulate a policy that then enabled the President to bomb Syria? If that's true, I congratulate the CIA for its intelligence network inside Syria. The problem is - I don't believe a word of it."
The reader might keep in mind that. intelligence officers have made concious decisions to serve the coercive power of the state ostensibly within a framework of laws. Ideally their efforts will always address the significant ethical burden of putting public needs and interests before their own. Arguably in this millennium American "intelligence" communities have failed miserably on both counts. U.S. intelligence corruption appears too deep to cleanse and it's probably time to totally rebuild.
Endnote: 1The April 17 date visible on the Postol document is a typo.
At least one U.S. congresswoman has both courage and conviction worthy of admiration. As reported by CNN Representative Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii would like to see some investigation and proof before the U.S. completely destroys Syria under false pretext as they have Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya using propaganda for "justification".
Many blame Republicans for obtuse actions of Bush II which have produced massive violence and chaos in the Middle East and elsewhere, but there is little difference with Democrats. Despite promises to the contrary Obama continued Dubbya's policies with gusto. Today's high profile Democrats are showing true colors by attacking Ms. Gabbard (a Democrat) for seeking reasonable proof about recent Syrian conduct alleged by Republicans.
As reported by RT.COM former DNC chair Howard Dean says "Gabbard should not be in Congress" while Clinton ally Neera Tanden unjustly disparages her for visiting Syria in order to obtain first-hand information. The power of the establishment is enormous in situations like this and Representative Tulsi Gabbard has tremendous courage to stand-up against that force. She is "right" in this case but "right" seldom has place in U.S. foreign policy decisions or complicit MSM eliciting public support.
One of my Syrian friends despises the Assad family. He says that whatever atrocities the western press might attribute to Bashar al-Assad's regime, the regime is capable of much more. "It runs in the family" he says. "Bashar is terribly evil—like his father and uncle." My friend is trained to analyze and solve problems and to think critically, and I have an abiding confidence that his assessments are accurate.
Nevertheless that doesn't mean that Syrian forces actually carried out the alleged chemical attack several days ago. Had there been 172 or more deaths reported that scenario would appear more credible. But with 72 fatalities initially tallied, the gas was significantly localized.
Also the forces being attacked are known to have means to produce chemical weapons and are believe to be in possession. They are not a party to agreements destroying that capability in Syria, however their western sympathizers are. And of course Bashar al-Assad's regime has adamantly denied using prohibited weapons.
The most plausible and reasonable explanation once again came from Moscow: "A Syrian air strike hit a 'terrorist warehouse' containing 'toxic substances' ... " according to SBS. Nonetheless western media, whom Chomsky calls Manufacturers of Consent, have reported from the outset that Syrian forces use chemical weapons—thereby fueling outrage toward another head-of-state the U.S. "deep state" wants to unseat.
Without reasonable investigation, fifty nine cruise missiles were launched at the Syrian airbase allegedly housing aircraft that allegedly used unverified chemical warheads. Twenty three cruise missiles actually hit the airfield. Aside from providing terrorist recruitment fodder and further destroying Russian relations, the most significant net effect of this "righteous" U.S. action is to virtually guarantee no Syrian peace anytime soon. Russia had accomplished serious inroads toward establishing a Syrian peace—but with Bashar al-Assad's regime intact.
Like Ron Paul noted when commenting on the U.S. airstrike "They're [U.S. hawks] terrified that peace was going to break out! Al-Qaeda was on the run, peace talks were happening, and all of a sudden, they had to change, and this changes things dramatically! [After the cruise missile attack] I don't expect peace talks anytime soon or in the distant future." Try to find time to read all of Ron Paul's comments.
For now it appears the deceitful warmongers have "won" yet another round.
Yet another Secret Service agent has been "caught" with a hooker. [dead MSN link replaced with nypost.com link on 04/20/2018] The kinship between U.S. Secret Service agents and hookers probably dates back to the agency's 1865 inception when it was tasked with disrupting counterfeiting. Stranger things have happened.
Relevantly the Obama administration's agents seemed to be perpetuating proud traditions in Columbia back in 2012 when reportedly 20 prostitutes were engaged and eight agents ultimately were fired. Incidentally the conclusive ratio of 2.66 babes per agent could prove useful in any Secret Service recruitment advert aimed at young men.
In any case many folks could care less about sexual relations between consenting adults. And moralizing about the situation can hardly be considered credible inside any self-described "Christian nation" directly responsible for over two million needless deaths since 9/11 as well as the greatest European refugee crisis the world has ever known—and all fueling an exponential rise in international terrorism.
Hyping officialdom's isolated sexual situations helps keep the bamboozled electorate divided and public attention diverted to all the wrong issues while characteristically loathsome national policies make unscrutinized headway toward nourishing the few at the expense of far too many. It's the contemporarily fashionable American way.
Russia has tried for several years to get the U.S. self-anointed dragon-slayers officially on-board a genuine fight against terriorism—especially in Syria where Russia has proved to be relatively successful in specific areas like Aleppo.
Nonetheless western media prefers to continue demonizing Russia and Vladimir Putin and all actions taken by either irrespective of outcome. Russia is consistently presented as the most-threatening common enemy of the US-led west. We agree that the potential exists for enormous Cyrillic influence worldwide, but not necessarily with enmity.
Regardless, failing to publicly sympathize with Russia's tremendous loss from the St. Petersburg metro suicide bombing seems extraordinarily vulgar taste—although entirely compatible with the arming and support of Syrian terrorists in hopes of eventual balkanization of Syria and the consequent long-sought illegal regime change "enthusiastically" funded by U.S. taxpayer dollars.
This site's favorite question remains: "how can a nation devoid of humanitarian goals, dismissive of human rights, and primarily exporting war be considered the leader of the free world?"
Wikileaks' latest trove of released documents called "Marble" was made publicly available on 03/31/2017 and includes source code for what is touted to be part of the "CIA's Core Library of malware". Among other things it permits a user [hacker] to very effectively obfuscate his or her "signature" and lead investigators to other international sources as the apparent perpetrator. It is billed by Wikileaks as "anti-forensic" software "used to hamper forensic investigators and anti-virus companies from attributing viruses, trojans and hacking attacks to the CIA".
However Wikileaks also says that "The Marble source code also includes a 'deobfuscator' to reverse CIA text obfuscation. Combined with the revealed obfuscation techniques, a pattern or signature emerges which can assist forensic investigators attribute previous hacking attacks and viruses to the CIA. Marble was in use at the CIA during 2016 ... Marble has test examples not just in English but also in Chinese, Russian, Korean, Arabic and Farsi."
Obviously this new Wikileaks release also brings into question what additional evidence might be needed in order to attribute specific hacking attacks to specific entities. Eventually those who believe that alleged Russian hacking of the 2016 U.S. election is a U.S. intelligence community smokescreen could perhaps be vindicated. Time will tell. In any case this CIA malware in the wrong hands could be a helluva tool for reinforcing the case for evermore revenue streams in the interest of cyber defense. It's well-past time to incrementally bring CIA activities officially into the light of day.