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Cynthia McKinney: Every Member of US Congress Must Sign Pledge to Israel

In News on February 18, 2013 at 7:43 PM

Former US lawmaker Cynthia McKinney says every candidate for Congress has to sign a pledge to vote for supporting the military superiority of Israel.


“Every candidate for Congress at that time had a pledge. They were given a pledge to sign … that had Jerusalem as the capital city,” McKinney said.

“You make a commitment that you would vote to support the military superiority of Israel that the economic assistant that Israel wants that you would vote to provide that,” she added.

McKinney said that if a candidate does not sign the pledge or perform accordingly, “then you do not get money to run your campaign.”

The former Congresswoman said that after she made the pledge issue public “the tactic changed.”

“But this is what is done for 535 members of the United States Congress, 100 senators and 435 members of the House of Representatives have to now write a paragraph which basically says the same thing.”

White House Moves to Counter “Online Radicalization”

In News on February 18, 2013 at 5:52 PM


The War of on Terror continues with a new grave threat – people writing things on the internet. The government is now trying to find ways to counter “online radicalization to violence” a phrase so broad it could mean practically anything.

Under the guise of curbing the “radicalization” of U.S. citizens and identifying and purging potentially violent persons from the Internet, the White House has initiated the creation of a new interagency working group to address what it calls a growing problem.

The White House issued a fact sheet delineating the broad objectives of the plan.

The interagency group will be headed by Quintan Wiktorowicz, the current White House senior director for community partnerships on the national security staff. The new group will be called The Interagency Working Group to Counter Online Radicalization and will be charged with the implementation of an Internet safety program to address online violent extremism.

Wiktorowiczs stated,

“Violent extremist groups ─ like Al Qaeda and its affiliates and adherents, violent supremacist groups, and violent “sovereign citizens” ─ are leveraging online tools and resources to propagate messages of violence and division. These groups use the Internet to disseminate propaganda, identify and groom potential recruits, and supplement their real-world recruitment efforts. Some members and supporters of these groups visit mainstream fora to see whether individuals might be recruited or encouraged to commit acts of violence, look for opportunities to draw targets into private exchanges, and exploit popular media like music videos and online video games. Although the Internet offers countless opportunities for Americans to connect, it has also provided violent extremists with access to new audiences and instruments for radicalization.”

Shorter: the internet is gaining in power and we have not figured out a way to dominate it yet, this scares us.

Wiktorowics never specified nor defined terms such as “violent supremacist groups” or “violent sovereign citizens.”

The White House website lists a flurry of groups from ever morphing “Al Qaeda” to “sovereign citizens” to [insert worst thing we can think of here]. These various and assorted people could, possibly, maybe write something that could, possibly, maybe make someone, somewhere, under some set of circumstances, become violent. How can you know anything unless you know everything?

But don’t worry according to the White House Fact Sheet the government will be “collaborating with industry” to help deal with the menace of free speech on the internet.

Collaborating with Industry: The Federal Government will collaborate with industry to explore how we might counter online violent extremism while protecting lawful Internet use and the civil liberties and privacy of individual users. Many companies have developed voluntary measures to promote Internet safety (such as fraud warnings, identity protection, and Internet safety tips), and we look forward to hearing their views about how we might apply similar measures to counter online radicalization to violence.

Big Government and Big Business working together, all to help us. This marriage of state and corporate power to regulate the internet sounds great doesn’t it? If only there was a name for such a system. In any case, allowing the government to work with industry to develop “countermeasures” to “radical” speech is a great way to protect all our freedom. What could go wrong?

The Obama Administration has already caused the alarm bells to ring on several occasions as the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released several internal memos referring to conservative Christians who believe the Bible, pro-life citizens who are against abortion, Tea Party activists, and political conservatives who believe in a strict adherence to the U.S. Constitution as “potential homegrown terrorists.”

And in the current gun rights debate, sovereign citizens have gone on the record to oppose the Obama administration’s all-out assault on the Second Amendment, vowing to disobey any law that would violate their unfettered rights to keep and bear firearms.

It would be difficult to imagine this administration, with its radical leftwing mindset and agenda, viewing such widespread displays of defiance as anything other than a direct threat to its power, and thus, a perfect motivation for declaring such citizens to be potentially “violent sovereign citizens.”

Citizen militias that are formed to counter the administration’s push to negate Second Amendment protections of unfettered gun rights would also potentially come under the umbrella of “violent extremist groups,” given that these citizens have openly stated that while they would never start a civil war by opening fire on federal agents, they would, in fact, return fire if fired upon first by government forces or law enforcement.

Although the United States itself was born directly from armed and “violent” resistance to government tyranny as represented by the British empire at the time, in today’s climate such ideas are viewed by elitist educators, historians, and politicians as dangerous extremism.

Thomas Jefferson, the nation’s third president, would more than likely be deemed a homegrown terrorist in modern America with his well-publicized view that the federal government needs to be purged every generation or so with an armed insurrection aimed at ridding the government of anyone who undermines individual liberty and the rights enumerated in the Bill of Rights and the Constitution.

Modern patriots who adhere to the philosophy of Jefferson represent a clear, direct threat to many within government who view the Constitution and the Bill of Rights as irritating roadblocks to their plans for complete government power over every sector of life.

America, thus, enters into a very dangerous phase of our history as increasingly it is becoming clear that our own government has set its sights against its own citizens.

What they are doing, of course, is conflating folks like us with Al Qaeda, the final culmination of Professor Churchill’s “Narrative of 1995″ — all the better to justify the use of drones and “decapitation” strategies domestically. This is about shaping the battlefield of the coming civil war. They understand that a civil war is coming, for they are the ones eager to start it — the fools.

Via FDL/Examiner/SipseyStreetIrregulars

Australian Senate seat a possible path to freedom for Assange

In News on February 18, 2013 at 2:16 PM



WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange believes winning a seat in the Australian Senate would force the US and others pursuing him to back down, securing his safe passage out of the UK following his 8-month confinement at the Ecuadoran Embassy in London.

The September 14 elections in Australia could provide a platform for a man once described by Vice President Joe Biden as a “high-tech terrorist,” by raising the political stakes for those seeking his extradition, Assange explained in a recent interview with Australian website The Conversation.

By winning a seat in Australia’s upper house, “the US Department of Justice won’t want to spark an international diplomatic row,” Assange was quoted as saying.

“It will drop its grand jury espionage investigation. The Cameron government will follow suit,” he continued, adding that “the political costs of the current standoff will be higher still” if UK authorities insist on blocking his safe passage out of the country.

In January, Assange submitted his application to the Australian Electoral Commission, paving the way for his 2013 senatorial bid in the state of Victoria. Senate nominations are likely to close on August 22, and the six-year term of office would commence on July 1, 2014.

Australians living abroad can enroll to vote and run for Senate if they have left Australia within the past three years, and intend to return within six years of their date of departure. Assange said the last time he visited Australia was in June 2010.

Assange was dismissive of technical objections to his candidacy, and refuted claims that he was a traitor to his country, or that he had violated section 44 of the Australian constitution by being under the “acknowledgement of allegiance, obedience or adherence to a foreign power.”

He is also optimistic that regardless of the immediacy of his release, a rule stipulating that he take up his senate seat within two months would not necessarily cripple his chances: “In that case [of not being released on time], the Senate could vote to evict me. But that would trigger a big political row. Australians probably wouldn’t swallow it.”

The landslide second re-election of Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa on Sunday plays into his strategy, as it will intensify pressure on Swedish authorities whose case against him is “falling apart,” Assange said. “The Swedish government should drop the case. But that requires them to make their own thorough investigation of how and why their system failed.”

Following his victory on Sunday, Correa, who characterized the current standoff over Assange as a problem of “neocolonialism” and not asylum, said a diplomatic solution “must be found… as quickly as possible.”

Assange has been holed up in the Ecuadoran embassy in London since June, after claiming asylum in a bid to avoid extradition to Sweden, where he is wanted for questioning on sexual assault allegations. British authorities have vowed to detain him if he steps foot outside of the embassy in light of the European Arrest Warrant issued against him.

If handed over to Swedish authorities, Assange fears he will be re-extradited to the United States to be questioned over the WikiLeaks release of thousands of US diplomatic cables.

Assange’s political hopes are married to the new WikiLeaks Party, which he plans to register soon with a 10-member national council. He believes that the party would easily clear the hurdle of attracting the minimum of 500 dues-paying members required to be registered in Australia.

When asked what the WikiLeaks Party would entail, he stressed that “maximum inclusiveness” would be key.

“The party will combine a small, centralized leadership with maximum grass roots involvement and support,” he said. “By relying on decentralized Wikipedia-style, user-generated structures, it will do without apparatchiks. The party will be incorruptible and ideologically united.”

Via RT

America Shamed Again: A Colonized People

In News on February 18, 2013 at 2:00 PM


Americans have been shamed many times by their elected representatives who cravenly bow to vested interests and betray the American people. But no previous disgraceful behavior can match the public shame brought to Americans by the behavior of the Senate Republicans in the confirmation hearing of Senator Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense.

Forty Senate Republicans made it clear that not only do they refuse to put their service to America ahead of their service to Israel, but also that they will not even put their service to America on a par with their service to Israel. To every American’s shame, the Republicans demonstrated for all the world to see that they are wholly owned subsidiaries of the Israel Lobby. (The Israel Lobby is not their only master. They are also owned by other powerful interest groups, such as Wall Street and the Military/Security Complex.)

The most embarrassing behavior of all came from the craven Lindsay Graham, who, while in the act of demonstrating his complete subservience by crawling on his belly before the Israel Lobby, dared Hagel to name one single person in the US Congress who is afraid of the Israel Lobby.

If I had been Hagel, I would have written off the nomination and answered: “You, Senator Graham, and your 40 craven colleagues.”

Indeed, Hagel could have answered: The entire US Congress, including Rand Paul who pretends to be different but isn’t.

The real question is: Who in the Congress is not afraid of the Israel Lobby?

The hatchet job on Hagel is driven by fear of the Israel Lobby.

Perhaps the worst affront Israel’s American representatives ever inflicted on the US military was the coverup of the Israeli air and torpedo boat attack on the USS Liberty in 1967. The Israeli attack failed to sink the Liberty but killed and wounded most of the crew. The survivors were ordered to silence, and it was 12 years before one of them spoke up and revealed what had happened (James Ennes,Assault On The Liberty). Not even Admiral Thomas Moorer, Chief of Naval Operations and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff could get Washington to own up to the facts.

The facts are now well known, but as far as Washington is concerned they are dead letter facts. The entire event has been moved to some parallel universe.

Why are the Senate Republicans out to destroy Hagel for Israel?

The answer is, first, back when Hagel was a US Senator he refused to be intimidated by the Israel Lobby and declared, “I am a US Senator, not an Israeli Senator.” In other words, Hagel did the impermissible. He said he represented US interests, not Israel’s interests. Hagel’s position implies that the interests of the two countries are not identical, which is a heresy.

The second part of the answer is that Hagel doesn’t think that it is a good idea for the US to start a war with Iran or for the US to permit Israel to do so.

But a US war with Iran is what the Israeli government and its neoconservative agents have been trying to impose on the Obama regime. Israel wants to get rid of Iran, because Iran supports Hizbollah in Southern Lebanon, thus preventing Israel from annexing that territory and its water resources, and because Iran supports Hamas, the only Palestinian organization that tries to oppose Israel’s total theft of Palestine, although Iran has never supplied Hamas with effective weapons.

The two organizations that oppose Israel’s territorial expansion, Hizbollah and Hamas, represent large numbers of Arab peoples. Nevertheless, both are declared, on Israel’s orders, to be “terrorist organizations” by the servile US Department of State, which in all reality should be called the Israeli Department of State, as it never puts US interests before Israel’s.

In other words, Hagel did not grovel. He did not say how much he loved Israel and how it would be his great honor to sacrifice all other interests to Israel’s, how he has waited his entire life for the chance to serve Israel as the US Secretary of Defense.

Hagel is not an opponent of Israel. He merely said, “First, I am an American.” His lack of craven subservience is unacceptable to the Israel Lobby, which has branded him an “anti-semite.”

Lindsay Graham, in contrast, has what it takes to be Israel’s perfect choice for US Secretary of Defense.

Graham will go out of his way to please the Israel Lobby. He will pull out all stops and behave with maximum servility to a foreign power in his effort to embarrass the President of the United States and his nominee, a war veteran and former US Senator who simply thinks that the US Congress and the executive branch should put American interests first.

Senate Majority Leader Reid has used Senate rules to keep Hagel’s nomination alive.
If Lindsay Graham succeeds in doing the Israel Lobby’s dirty work, he will have handed a defeat of the US President to the Israeli Prime Minister, who has demeaned the President of the United States for not doing Israel’s bidding and attacking Iran.

Americans are a colonized people. Their government represents the colonizing powers: Wall Street, the Israel Lobby, the Military/Security Complex, Agribusiness, Pharmaceuticals, Energy, Mining, and Timber interests.

Two elected representatives who tried to represent the American people–Ron Paul and Dennis Kucinich–found representative government to be an inhospitable place for those few who attempt to represent the interests of the American people.

Like Ron Paul, Dennis Kucinich, and Gerald Celente, I stand with our Founding Fathers who opposed America’s entanglement in foreign wars. In an effort to prevent entanglements, the Founding Fathers gave the power to declare war to Congress. Over the years Congress has gradually ceded this power to the President to the extent that it no longer exists as a power of Congress. The President can start a war anywhere at any time simply by declaring that the war is not a war but a “time-limited, scope-limited, kinetic military action.” Or he can use some other nonsensical collection of words.

In the first few years of the 21st century, the executive branch has invaded two countries, violated the sovereignty of five others with military operations, and has established military bases in Africa in order to counteract China’s economic penetration of the continent and to secure the resources for US and European corporations, thus enlarging the prospects for future wars. If the Republicans succeed in blocking Hagel’s confirmation, the prospect of war with Iran will be boosted.

By abdicating its war power, Congress lost its control of the purse. As the executive branch withholds more and more information from Congressional oversight committees, Congress is becoming increasingly powerless. As Washington’s war debts mount, Washington’s attack on the social safety net will become more intense. Governmental institutions that provide services to Americans will wither as more tax revenues are directed to the coffers of special interests and foreign entanglements.

The tenuous connection between the US government and the interests of citizens is on its way to being severed entirely.

Via Infowars

Gangnam Style Finds a Tragic Touch in Gaza

In News on February 18, 2013 at 11:51 AM



“We wanted to do something to bring focus to the plight of Palestinian political prisoners, of which there are around 5,000 in Israeli jails, including hunger strikers, children, women,” says Mohannad Barakat, 30, one of seven Palestinians who have made a Palestinian version of the Gangnam style.

The Gangnam Gaza Style parodies the chart-topping South Korean video ‘Gangnam Style.’ Gaza’s version injects sordid realities of Palestinians’ lives under Israeli military occupation and the years-long choking siege of the Gaza Strip.

“We wanted to tell the outside world about the impossible circumstances under which we live: that our airport has been destroyed, our fishers are prevented from accessing their sea, that half our population is out of work, that we use tunnels instead of border crossings and donkeys because fuel is scarce.”

The Gazan rendition of the Korean dance video highlights some of Gaza’s most urgent problems under the siege, including daily power outages, fuel shortages, lack of freedom of movement, and unemployment.

Dressed in black, heads wrapped with the traditional black and white Kuffiyehs (scarves), five men and two children dance a fusion of ‘Gangnam style’ and Dabke, the energetic dance found in many Arab countries.

The four-and-a-half minute video moves from Gaza’s coast, polluted with the untreatable sewage pumped into the sea at the rate of 90 million litres per day, to gas-less filling stations, to the tunnels which serve as border crossings and bring Israeli-banned construction materials into Strip, long devastated by Israeli-bombing.

The theatrical bomb explosion in the original Gangnam Style video also appears more appropriately in the Gazan version: with two major Israeli offensives on the Strip in the last four years, and numerous other Israeli attacks before and in between, Gaza’s Palestinians are all too familiar with bombings.

Wassim abu Shabaan, 10, one of the two children in the clip is one of thousands of Palestinians in Gaza whose homes have been destroyed by Israeli bombing and bulldozing in the last four years.

“The whole house was destroyed, everything was destroyed…our computer, my room, our clothes, everything,” says the boy of the 2009 Israeli bombing of his home.

“Palestinian children can recognise the difference between an F-15 and an F-16 warplane, and the difference between drones armed with missiles and surveillance drones just by their sound,” says Mohannad Barakat.

In the November 2012 Israeli attacks on Gaza, Israeli warplanes bombed Palestine stadium, one of Gaza’s few venues for sports and a place where disabled athletes trained. Gangnam Gaza depicts this destruction, the five men and two children entering the stadium with soccer balls in hand to find it in ruins.

The Gaza Community Mental Health Programme found in 2009 that over 91 percent of children in Gaza suffer from moderate to severe post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Children make up roughly half the population of Gaza’s 1.7 million people.

“All of us are affected by the siege and the various Israeli wars on Gaza. We all have psychological problems from living under these circumstances. We hadn’t recovered from the 2009 Israeli war on Gaza when the 2012 attacks occurred.”

Gaza’s infrastructure had likewise not recovered from the attacks and the siege, with hospitals reporting consistent shortages of essential medicines and medical supplies, and Gaza’s schools severely overcrowded, the vast majority of whom run double, even triple, shifts to accommodate all of the students.

Since 2006, when Israel bombed Gaza’s sole power plant, the entire Strip has been under daily rolling power outages, ranging from 18 and 20 hour outages in the worst years to the current eight hours on, eight hours off scheduled outages.

“It’s the 21st century but Gaza still has almost no electricity,” says Barakat. “The use of candles and generators indoors during power outages has caused a number of fires and carbon monoxide poisoning deaths in recent years.”

The Strip is currently enduring another crisis of cooking gas shortages, particularly hard during winter months when hot meals and beverages help make up for the lack of heating in the typically uninsulated homes.

The problem of sewage treatment has yet to be solved, for want of building materials to expand Gaza’s outdated sanitation facilities. The combination of power outages and little clean water to begin with contributes to a general water crisis, with 95 percent of Gaza’s water undrinkable by World Health Organisation (WHO) standards.

A 2012 United Nations report entitled ‘Gaza in 2020: a Liveable Place?’ predicts that Gaza’s sole aquifer, already over-tapped and under-replenished will fail by 2016.

The WHO reports that at least 81 patients have died due to delayed medical referrals since 2008 alone. In 2012, Palestinian authorities reported over 400 kidney patients were at risk due to lack of essential dialysis equipment shortages.

Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP-UK) reports that 10 percent of children under five years old suffer chronic malnutrition, while anaemia is rampant among pregnant women.

Since 2007, the Israeli army has killed 2,300 Palestinians, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs’ June, 2012 report. Many of these deaths, and hundreds of the 7,700 injuries the UN reported (not including the November 2012 Israeli attacks) have occurred in Gaza’s border regions and on the sea, where fishers and farmers alike are targeted by the Israeli army as they work.

The Israeli-imposed “buffer zone” cuts Gazan Palestinians off from 35 percent of their agricultural land, impacting on their economy and local food sources.

Produce once exported to the rest of Palestine and to European markets, along with textiles and furniture, have not been exported since 2006, save an insignificant amount. The same June 2012 UN report notes that Gazan exports “have dropped to less than 3 percent of 2006 levels.”
Some of Gaza’s most desperately poor work in the hundreds of tunnels running to Egypt. As of June 2012, the UN noted that “at least 172 Palestinian civilians have been killed while working in tunnels,” since 2007.

Although most of the young men in ‘Gangnam Gaza Style’ have studied or are currently studying in post-secondary education, nearly all are unemployed.

Filmed over a two week period, using a cell phone camera, the clip cost roughly 100 dollars to make. “For taxis and phone cards mostly,” says Barakat.

Via IPSnews

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