Can We Try Some Honesty on Memorial Day?

How to Honor Memorial Day

Editor Note: Of all the world’s holidays commemorating wars, Memorial Day should be one of sober reflection on war’s horrible costs, surely not a moment to glorify warfare or lust for more wars. But many pols and pundits can’t resist the opportunity, as discussed below.

By Ray McGovern

How best to show respect for the U.S. troops killed in Iraq and Afghanistan and for their families on Memorial Day? Simple: Avoid euphemisms like “the fallen” and expose the lies about what a great idea it was to start those wars and then to “surge” tens of thousands of more troops into those fools’ errands.

Focus: Hillary Clinton - May 23, 2015


First round of Hillary Clinton State Department emails released - FOX


Department of State on Benghazi attack: "emails we release today do not change the essential facts or our understanding of the events” - twitter


Text of the 296 Clinton emails released Friday by the State Department - foia.state.gov


VIDEO: State Department Answers Questions About Clinton Emails - YouTube


Gowdy: 300 emails released by the State Department selected by Clinton's lawyers, Hillary should turn over her entire server - Washington Examiner


State paper copies of Hillary's emails missing info in digital originals: IP addresses, originating servers and attachments - newsbusters


Internal emails show Clinton got detailed intel on 'planned' Benghazi hit, the attackers were with the Islamist militia Ansar al-Sharia - Fox News


AP: Hillary Clinton Received Now-Classified Benghazi Info on Private Email Server, Documents Show - Fox Nation


Report: Hillary's Private Emails Contained 'Sensitive' Info, Including Whereabouts of Chris Stevens - Breitbart


Hillary Clinton, White House dismiss finding of classified info in Clinton's emails - WashingtonExaminer.com


Hillary Knew Of Threat Against U.S. Officials In Benghazi One Year Before Attacks - The Daily Caller


Rand Paul was right: Rifles, RPGs and missiles flowed from Benghazi to ISIS ports - WashingtonExaminer.com


Did Sid Blumenthal Violate Foreign-Lobbying Law? - National Review Online


Archives officials worried about Clinton’s records when she left State Department - TheHill


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Clinton Foundation reveals up to $26 million in additional undisclosed payments for speeches by Bill, Hillary and Chelsea - The Washington Post


Clintons made millions speaking to New York big firms, colleges - wgrz.com


Here's where Hillary gave controversial speeches, students spoke out against wasteful spending while colleges dealt with tight budgets - NPR


Clinton Foundation Rakes in Fees from Big Banks for Speeches - American Banker


Large International Corporations Find Multiple Avenues To Fill Hillary Clinton’s Pockets, Influence Government - Washington Free Beacon


New Disclosures Reveal Bill Clinton Ca$hed $500K to $1 Million from Qatari Govt for 2 Speeches - Breitbart


Brunei gave a big contribution to the Clinton Foundation in 2002 and Hillary accepted $58,000 worth of jewelry from the Sultan while she was with the State Department - Washington Free Beacon


Archives show Hillary Clinton OK'd tax breaks for nonprofits at the same time that the Clinton Foundation was soliciting donations for her husband's presidential library - AP


AP's Own Report Undermines Claims Of "Ethics Concerns" Around Nonprofit Tax Exemptions Advocated by Hillary Clinton - Media Matters for America


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Hillary Clinton-friendly super PAC struggles to raise money: Report - CBS News


Hillary Clinton Campaign sets $2 billion fundraising goal, straining under the gargantuan task of raising huge sums - POLITICO


Pro-Clinton Super PAC Wasted Millions on Democratic Operatives - The Daily Beast


At K Street’s No. 1 lobby shop, ties to Clinton run deep - TheHill


Clintons, Morgan Stanley connection: campaign contributions, former members of Bill's administration, donations to foundation - OpenSecrets


Clinton fundraiser highlights donor disclosure discrepancies, Clinton Foundation dramatically undercounts contributions from a Clinton campaign donor’s group - Washington Free Beacon


Hillary Clinton's devotion to Monsanto's GMOs scares away Democrat voters - NaturalNews.com


VIDEO: Monsanto connections motivate Iowans to drop support for Hillary Clinton - YouTube


Clinton attacks Republicans over Ex-Im Bank, says it would be wrong to dismantle the bank because it helps U.S. businesses sell goods in a fiercely competitive global market - Reuters


GOP chairman: Hillary a 'natural cheerleader' for Export-Import Bank, beneficiaries of the bank happen to be donors to the Clinton Foundation as well as underwriters of the speaking fees - TheHill


Koch brothers blast Hillary Clinton’s support for the Export-Import Bank - POLITICO


Rappers endorse Hillary Clinton - CNNPolitics.com


POLL : Pew: Clinton’s favorable ratings nationwide have declined 9 points since last August - Washington Times


POLL: Hillary Clinton Favorability Timeline - Pew Research


POLL : Field: California Democrats continue to support Hillary Clinton overwhelmingly for president, but she has slipped in recent months - San Jose Mercury News


POLL: The percentage of likely California Democratic primary voters favoring Clinton candidacy has declined six points since February - Field Research


POLL: Clinton leads the entire Republican field in Washinton state by margins smaller than what Barack Obama won by in 2008 and 2012 - Public Policy Polling


POLL: Most Voters Don't Trust Media To Report Politics Fairly; Many Want Stephanopoulos Barred From Election Coverage - Rasmussen Poll

 

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Why Elites Love Drones

I sometimes read that drone strikes are counterproductive to western security interests because each person killed by a drone results in more new ‘terrorists’. See, for example, ‘The more civilians US drones kill in the Mideast, the more radicals they create’.

The 16 Core Progressive Policies, Really?

Salvatore Babones' proposals in Sixteen for '16: A Progressive Agenda for a Better America are not bad, assuming a progressive agenda can limit itself to one nation.

But these sorts of proposals tend to be -- and this one is no exception -- smart, compassionate takes on the topics that are in the corporate media. The topics that aren't already on your television also aren't in this book or others like it.

What should the U.S. public budget be? Is nearly double the 2001 level too much military spending, too little, or just right? Who knows. Babones doesn't say.

Why not consult someone on "the other 54% of the budget" that all such literature ignores (the military's 54% of discretionary spending, as calculated by the National Priorities Project)? Just a quick consultation with someone aware of the existence of the single largest public project of the United States would add something to all of these pseudo-electoral platforms.

Item number 14 in Babones' list is "Stop torturing, stop assassinating, and close down the NSA." He goes through the common pretense that Obama "banned torture," as if it weren't a felony that was simply going unpunished on Obama's orders. He follows this up with the usual pretense that the limited "ban" on torture opened up loopholes for torturing "legally." Babones does a bit better on drone murders. But what about manned-aircraft murders? Tank murders? Gun murders? What about war? Is war "progressive"? Who knows!

Should we, as the other 15 points propose, create jobs, build America's infrastructure, support public education, extend Medicare to everyone, raise taxes on top incomes, refinance social security, take down Wall Street, make it easy to join a union, set a living minimum wage, upgrade to 10-10-10, put an end to the prison state, pass a national abortion law, let people vote, suffer the refugee children, and save the earth? Of course, we should.

But if you're willing to end the prison state (and as the text expands on that, to end the militarization of local police) then you are willing to make significant change, and you are aware of the problem of militarization. So how does that little item that takes up 54% of the budget go AWOL from all of these projects?

If U.S. military spending were merely returned to 2001 levels, the savings of $213 billion per year could fund education, a new justice system, aid for refugees, an open and fair and verifiable election system, and the saving of the earth -- with a good bit of change left over.

Whence the nearly unanimous decision to avoid the topic? The Institute for Policy Studies, which published this book, does not ignore the topic elsewhere. Why does it not manage to infiltrate these progressive platforms? Perhaps peace is just not progressive.

On the U.S. Killing of Two Children in Syria

The U.S. military admitted on Thursday to killing two girls in Syria.

If a target of U.S. aggression can be alleged to have killed children, especially with the wrong kind of weapon, that is used as grounds for war. War is supposed to be the cure for that.

This was the case in 2013 with the White House's false claims to knowledge that the Syrian government had killed children with chemical weapons. President Obama told us to watch videos of dead children and either support a bombing campaign against Syria or support killing children.

But that's a Catch-22, because it's telling you to either support killing children or support killing children.

In recent days I've been watching videos of children killed in Yemen by Saudi Arabia with U.S. missiles and support. Missiles are in fact not any more precise in their actual use than chemical weapons, not any less deadly, not any less guilty of killing children, including the hundreds of children the U.S. has killed with missiles from drones in just a few countries it doesn't even admit to being at war with.

The Pentagon doesn't admit to any of this; it sometimes admits to isolated incidents that have been widely reported.

But imagine if missiles were considered the wrong kind of weapon, and imagine if the Syrian government and its friends were considered "the international community" -- one could imagine the international community demanding the humanitarian bombing of Washington, D.C., as revenge for the brutal murder of two little girls by U.S. missile in Syria.

We in the United States view the domestic bombing of 4 little black girls in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1963 as barbaric, and we view racism as something we've overcome, but imagine if the little girls whom President Obama murdered in Syria in November had been white, Christian, English-speaking Americans. One cannot in that situation suppose the response would have been the same.

It is not possible to avoid civilian casualties in war. They are the majority of the casualties -- of the dead, of the injured, of those rendered homeless, and of the traumatized -- in virtually every war of the past half century. Often they are an enormous majority. The idea that war can be a tool to remedy something worse than war, or that genocide is truly distinct from war is not supported by facts.

The Pentagon admitting to killing civilians is rare but not unprecedented. In fact it is a small nod in the direction of a policy that President Obama created and then quickly abandoned under which he claimed that all such casualties would be reported.

Does it matter? Will people care?

For that, I think there has to be video, it has to be widely shown and the killings morally condemned, and people have to find their way to the media outlets willing to show it and condemn it.

That is, if we're talking about people in the United States.

Of course the people of Western Asia will protest the United States all the more fervently whether the general public in the United States knows what its government is doing or not.

US must act against Gulf dictators; Alkhalifa continue revenge from Salman, Rajab

Following the absence of Bahrain’s dictator from the Camp David summit last week, US Congress is putting Bahrain on notice that it needs to get serious about political reforms if it doesn’t want to see 5,000 US sailors and Marines take their business elsewhere. The House last week passed an annual defence bill that requires the Department of Defence to plan for a potential relocation of the US 5th Fleet if political tensions persist. Lawmakers made clear the provision was aimed squarely at putting pressure on the Alkhalifa monarchy to respond to what they consider to be legitimate grievances of the majority Shiite population. “The reason that we have to do some planning now for that contingency is exactly because of the Bahraini monarchy’s failure to address the concerns of the people,” the sponsor of the provision, Rep. Hank Johnson, D-Ga., told Al-Monitor. “If they choose not to address those concerns or do so in a heavy-handed way and somehow th ings end up getting worse there, then we may be forced to have to leave. And I don’t think any American policymaker wants to see that happen.”

Concern is growing for the health of Dr Abdul Jalil AlSingace after two almost two months on hunger strike in protest at the torture inflicted on hundreds of detainees of the notorious Jaw Prison. He was subjected to enormous psychological and physical pressure for defending the victims who were subjected to one of the worst episodes of systematic state terrorism. He has now been transferred to the military hospital after sustaining damage to his internal organs including his heart. He is severely disabled and has been using crutches since childhood. He was arrested among the Bahrain 13; the leadership of the Revolution.

The heavy-handed policy of Alkhalifa regime has continued. This morning Abbas Hassan has been arrested in dawn raid on his home in Barbar Town. Yesterday, four native students were detained at the airport upon their return from their studies in India. Adel Ahmad Al Taitoon, Fadhel Mahmood Rajab, Hussain Mohammad Ibrahim and Mahmood Jassim Ni’ma were taken to unknown destination and fear is growing that they may be subjected to torture. Hussain Rajab, the brother of Fadhel Rajab was also arrested.

On Sunday 17th May Mohammad Abdul Amir Thamer from Dar Kulaib was arrested from his work place and taken to one of the secret torture houses. From Daih Town Hussain Abdulla Fadhel was arrested on Sunday from his sister’s house at Maqsha’ Town. His parents home was also raided with ferocity and shamelessness. On 15th May, four young men from Dar Kulaib were detained: Abdulla Abbase, Mohammad Ali Al Arab, Salman Ibrahim and Abdulla Mohammad. From Nu’aim under-aged Qassim Amin was snatched  from his home. From Arad Town, Mahmood Jassim was arrested from his friends house. Abdulla Nasser Mohammad was detained in a raid on his home in Demstan Town. Ayyoub Adel from Muharraq was snatched from a house in Malikiya.  Is it now almost three weeks since Yasser Ahmad Al Amriki was arrested with no news or family visit. For the sixth time, Jalila Sayed Amin, had her detention extended by 15 more days for taking part in anti-regime activities.

The Alkhalifa decision to jail Nabeel Rajab, the world-renowned human rights activist for six months has angered the World’s human rights bodies. On 14th February Amnesty International said: “Today’s verdict shows once again that Bahrain is brazenly flouting its international obligations. Nabeel Rajab has been sentenced solely for peacefully expressing his opinion, the Bahraini authorities must release him immediately and unconditionally, and ensure his conviction is quashed,” said Said Boumedouha, Deputy Director of the Middle East and North Africa Programme at Amnesty International. The US Under-Secretary of State for Human Rights, Democracy and Labour has rejected this sentence on his twitter account: Thomas Malinowski said: Disappointed by Nabeel Rajab’s denial of appeal. No one wanywhere should be jailed for peacefully expressing their opinion”.

Today, Alkhalifa kangaroo court trying the Secretary General of AlWefaq Society, once again, adjourned issuing its verdict until 16th June. Defence lawyers have not been allowed to present their defence to the court. The “judge” refused to allow Sheikh Ali Salman to speak in defence of himself.

The Gulf region expert for Human Rights First, Brian Dooley has said that a research by his organisation has reached the conclusion that  true stability in the Gulf region can only be reached through democratic reforms that allow for peaceful dissent. As civil society disappears, so too does the moderate opposition, which is quickly supplanted by extremism. As Obama discusses security concerns with his Gulf allies, he would do well to tell them that the biggest security threat to both the US and the Gulf is their own repression.

Bahrain Freedom Movement
20th May 2015

If U.S. Military Spending Returned to 2001 Level

The House of Representatives has headed out of town to memorialize wars without managing to achieve agreement with the Senate on reauthorizing some of the most abusive "temporary" measures of the PATRIOT Act. Three cheers for Congressional vacations!

What if not just our civil liberties but our budget got a little bit of 2001 back?

In 2001, U.S. military spending was $397 billion, from which it soared to a peak of $720 billion in 2010, and is now at $610 billion in 2015. These figures from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (in constant 2011 dollars) exclude debt payments, veterans costs, and civil defense, which raise the figure to over $1 trillion a year now, not counting state and local spending on the military.

Military spending is now 54% of U.S. federal discretionary spending according to the National Priorities Project. Everything else -- and the entire debate in which liberals want more spending and conservatives want less! -- is contained within the other 46% of the budget.

U.S. military spending, according to SIPRI, is 35% of the world total. U.S. and Europe make 56% of the world. The U.S. and its allies around the globe (it has troops in 175 countries, and most countries are armed in great part by U.S. companies) make up the bulk of world spending.

Iran spends 0.65% of world military spending (as of 2012, the last year available). China's military spending has been rising for years and has soared since 2008 and the U.S. pivot to Asia, from $107 billion in 2008 to now $216 billion. But that's still just 12% of world spending.

Per capita the U.S. now spends $1,891 current U.S. dollars for each person in the United States, as compared with $242 per capita worldwide, or $165 per capita in the world outside the U.S., or $155 per capita in China.

The dramatically increased U.S. military spending has not made the U.S. or the world safer. Early on in the "war on terror" the U.S. government ceased reporting on terrorism, as it increased. The Global Terrorism Index records a steady increase in terrorist attacks from 2001 to the present. A Gallup poll in 65 nations at the end of 2013 found the United States overwhelmingly viewed as the greatest threat to peace in the world. Iraq has been turned into hell, with Libya, Afghanistan, Yemen, Pakistan, and Somalia close behind. Newly embittered terrorist groups have arisen in direct response to U.S. terrorism and the devastation it's left behind. And arms races have been sparked that benefit only the arms dealers.

But the spending has had other consequences. The U.S. has risen into the top five nations in the world for disparity of wealth. The 10th wealthiest country on earth per capita doesn't look wealthy when you drive through it. And you do have to drive, with 0 miles of high-speed rail built; but local U.S. police have weapons of war now. And you have to be careful when you drive. The American Society of Civil Engineers gives U.S. infrastructure a D+. Areas of cities like Detroit have become wasteland. Residential areas lack water or are poisoned by environmental pollution -- most often from military operations. The U.S. now ranks 35th in freedom to choose what to do with your life, 36th in life expectancy, 47th in preventing infant mortality, 57th in employment, and trails in education by various measures.

If U.S. military spending were merely returned to 2001 levels, the savings of $213 billion per year could meet the following needs:

End hunger and starvation worldwide -- $30 billion per year.
Provide clean drinking water worldwide -- $11 billion per year.
Provide free college in the United States -- $70 billion per year (according to Senate legislation).
Double U.S. foreign aid -- $23 billion per year.
Build and maintain a high-speed rail system in the U.S. -- $30 billion per year.
Invest in solar and renewable energy as never before -- $20 billion per year.
Fund peace initiatives as never before -- $10 billion per year.

That would leave $19 billion left over per year with which to pay down debt.

You may say I'm a dreamer, but this is life and death. War kills more by how the money isn't spent than by how it is spent.

War Speaks Every Language But Never Knows What to Say to Frogs

Alice Walker explains this line, "Though war speaks every language it never knows what to say to frogs" in the opening of her beautiful book, Why War Is Never a Good Idea, illustrated by Stefano Vitale, thus:

War speaks every language she says, because every nation has war. But of course this isn't true. Many nations that make war on others do not have war at home, not in remotely the way the nations have it where wars are fought. Anyone in the United States knows that a global war aggressor suffers, but also knows that the wars are not here, and that the difference is one of night and day. Many nations also do not make war, nearby or far off. Some nations, Costa Rica, Iceland, and lots of little nations, have no military, no war plans, no investment in future wars, and no wars. And this is why it matters that War Is Never a Good Idea, because good ideas exist as available alternatives.

The frogs, Walker explains very accurately as being among the respresentatives in her book of the creatures who play no role in creating war, have no understanding of war, and suffer from war, directly from its violence, and indirectly from its impact on climate change and the natural environment.

Walker's personification of war as a being that knows and thinks and does things for its own purposes is also, strictly speaking, perfectly accurate, as well as powerfully provocative. Just as a "selfish gene" can be understood as aiming for the well-being of the gene rather than the organism, war does not benefit its participants, its victims, its observers, or for the most part its creators, supporters, cheerleaders, or tolerators. War does not generate happiness, prosperity, fulfillment, wisdom, beauty, or sustainability. War generates more war. In the absence of war it would be quite easy to persuade enough people to nip in the bud any notion of creating it. In the presence of war, the willful delusion that war is inevitable is quite pervasive.

"Though war is old, it has not become wise. It will not hesitate to destroy things that do not belong to it, things very much older than itself."

There is wisdom in that line. Not only have various nations set war aside for decades or centuries, and in some cases brought it back again, but most human cultures for most of human existence never knew war at all. It is newer than most every adaptation of human evolution, and we are unable to adapt to it, and should we do so it would destroy us.

"Here war is munching on a village. Its missiles taking chunks, big bites out of it. War's leftover gunk seeps like saliva into the ground. It is finding its way into the village well."

Stop drinking the water.

What's Baddawi?

On October 29, 1948, the Israeli terrorist group Irgun ethnically cleansed the village of Safsaf in Palestine, lining some 70 men up, shooting them, dumping them in a ditch, and raping three girls. Among the survivors who fled to Lebanon were the grandparents of a young woman in Chicago who has a talent for telling stories in pictures and words. Safsaf was called Safsofa by the Romans and can be found as Safsufa on the iNakba app on your NSA-tracking device.

Baddawi is two things. It's the name of a refugee camp in Lebanon where this young woman's father grew up. The name comes from the word Bedouin, meaning nomad. "Al Beddaoui, Lebanon" locates it on Google-Earth. The residents have been there since 1948 or since they were born, and they are not nomads by choice. They live in a permament state of desiring to return home forever, even those who have never been home ever.

Justice for Palestine is where little sparks of opposition to war can be found among young people in the militarized United States of 2015, and where their art can be found as well.The second thing that Baddawi is, is a book that tells a story of childhood in Baddawi for Ahmad, the father of the author and artist Leila Abdelrazaq.

I've just read Baddawi and passed it along to my son. It's a book that tells a personal story that is also a cultural and historical record. This is the unique story of one boy, but in great measure the story of millions of Palestinian refugees. Ahmad's experiences growing up are often identical to my own or my son's, but often dramatically different. He plays the games and learns the lessons of children everywhere, but confronts the struggles of poverty, of war, and of discrimination -- of second-class citizenship in the land where Israel and its Western backers swept his unwanted ancestors.

Baddawi is the story of a rather remarkable boy, but a story that conveys a sense of what life was like and is like still for a great many boys and girls who live without nationality, not as a result of choosing world citizenship but by mandate of global powers who find their existence inconvenient. And yet the story is quite straightforwardly entertaining and good-spirited. One is disappointed when it ends rather abruptly, yet heartened to gain the impression that part two may be forthcoming.

I notice, incidentally, that there will be a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., on June 2nd, on Israel's mistreatment of Palestinian Children, and that you can go here to ask your Misrepresentative and Senators to attend.

##

Full disclosure: I sometimes do work for this book's publisher, but that work does not include reviewing books.

Dahr Jamail: The Navy's Great Alaskan "War"

It isn’t the best of times for the American Arctic and let me explain why.

Focus: Hillary Clinton - May 21, 2015


Federal court rejects State Dept plan to release Hillary Clinton's emails in January, orders it to come up with a plan to do it in batches - DailyMail


State Department will comply with court order on Hillary Clinton emails - washingtonexaminer.com


The bizarrely slow process of releasing Hillary Clinton’s e-mails, explained - The Washington Post


Hillary Clinton’s State Department staff kept tight rein on records, Aides sometimes blocked release of documents requested under law - WSJ


Hillary Clinton's Staff at State Handled FOIA Requests, Not Experts: WSJ - newsmax.com


VIDEO: State Dept Won't Comment on Report Cheryl Mills Interfered with Hillary Clinton FOIA Requests - YouTube


GOP taking Benghazi fight to House floor - TheHill


Republicans threaten State Department’s funding in Benghazi fight - TheHill


Further Proof Hillary Clinton Must Turn Over Her Private Server: Speaker Boehner - Speaker.gov


Exclusive: House Benghazi panel subpoenas former Clinton White House aide Blumenthal - Reuters


Democrats criticize Blumenthal subpoena - Kentucky.com


Clinton stands by Blumenthal - WashingtonExaminer.com


Who Is Clinton Confidant Sidney Blumenthal? - NPR


Benghazi panel member: Clinton aide Abedin could be deposed soon - TheHill


Republicans assail Clinton Foundation's tax exemption - TheHill


Text of the Republican letter asking for review of Foundation’s tax-exempt status - blackburn.house.gov


VIDEO: Rep Blackburn Calls For IRS To Look At Clinton FDN Tax Exempt Status Trey Gowdy - YouTube


Clinton AIDS charity was shut down in Massachusetts - wnd.com


Here are all the six-figure speaking fees that Hillary Clinton received after leaving the State Dept. - Business Insider


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Hillary Clinton Breaks Her Silence After 28 Days of Avoiding the Press - ABC News


Hillary Clinton 2016: Her Iraq vote was a mistake, she says - POLITICO


Elizabeth Warren: I'd like to see Hillary Clinton be 'clearer' on trade deal - Washington Times


POLL: Should Hillary Clinton worry about her latest drop in the polls? (VIDEO) - CSMonitor.com


POLL: Clinton is viewed less favorably among younger Democratic voters - Fusion


New Hampshire Democrats Are Not Happy with Hillary Clinton - VICE


Iowa Democrats Can't Name Clinton State Dept Accomplishment [VIDEO] - The Daily Caller


Hillary Clinton fought against designating Boko Haram as a terrorist group - Washington Free Beacon


Clinton loyalists gain power at super-PAC - TheHill


Money Woes for Clinton Super PAC - WSJ


Hillary Clinton-backing super PAC hit with FEC complaint, charges of illegal in-kind contributions - Washington Times


Reclusive Chicago Multimillionaire Eychaner Throwing Fundraiser for Hillary Clinton Tonight - Bloomberg Politics


Fundraiser by Eychaner puts spotlight on Clinton Foundation finances - POLITICO


Hillary Clinton Taps DREAMer Lorella Praeli As Latino Outreach Director - NBC News.com


Hillary Clinton Porn Parody Heats Up Presidential Election - huffingtonpost.com

 

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RAMSTEIN VIGIL AT GERMAN CONSULATE 871 UN Plaza, NYC

NEW YORK – A vigil imploring the German government to order the immediate closure of the United States drone satellite relay station at Ramstein Air Base will be held at 11:30 am, Tuesday, May 26, 2015 at the German Consulate, 871 U.N. Plaza.

The Ramstein relay station, according to an April 17, 2015 article in The Intercept, is essential to U.S. drone attacks because it “enables drone operators in the American Southwest to communicate with their remote aircraft in Yemen, Somalia, Afghanistan and other targeted countries.” 

The vigil will mark the opening of a court case in Cologne, Germany on May 27, 2015 on behalf of Faisal bin Ali Jaber, an environmental engineer from Yemen who lost his brother-in-law and a nephew to a U.S. drone attack in 2012.  His suit seeks to force the German government act to close the Ramstein relay station under a provision of German law that allows people to seek redress if they have suffered harm from activities generated on German soil, in this case drone execution without due process.

“This is an extremely important case not only because it has the potential for stopping U.S. drone attacks but because it may expose much about the U.S. drone program that has been kept secret from the American public and the world,” said Nick Mottern, Director of KnowDrones.com

The vigil will include music by the Raging Grannies singing group and display of a large model of the MQ-9 Reaper, the world’s most numerous and deadly drone.  The event is being organized by: KnowDrones.com, the Granny Peace Brigade and World Can’t Wait.

Finally! Some climate crisis honesty: Forget About a 2 Future; It Will be 4˚-6˚C Degrees, and Soon

By Dave Lindorff

 

            A tectonic shift is occurring suddenly in the debate over climate change.

 

Talk Nation Radio: David Segal on Ending Mass Surveillance, Keeping the Internet Free

https://soundcloud.com/davidcnswanson/talk-nation-radio-david-segal-on-ending-mass-surveillance-keeping-the-internet-free/

David Segal is the Executive Director of Demand Progress. He discusses the current struggles to end mass surveillance by the U.S. government and to keep the internet free and open. Segal is a former Democratic Rhode Island State Representative, and served on the Providence City Council as a member of the Green Party. During his eight years as an elected official he oversaw the passage of legislation promoting economic justice, renewable energy and open space, banking reform, affordable housing, LGBT rights, criminal justice reform, and a variety of other progressive causes. He recently ran in the Democratic primary for Rhode Island’s first Congressional seat, supported by much of the netroots and organized labor. His opinion pieces have appeared in the New York Times, Boston Globe, and other newspapers, and in a variety of online publications. He has a degree in mathematics from Columbia University. See:

http://demandprogress.org

http://sunsetthepatriotact.org

Total run time: 29:00

Host: David Swanson.
Producer: David Swanson.
Music by Duke Ellington.

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Engelhardt: Tomorrow's News Today

This article originally appeared at TomDispatch.com.

Focus: Hillary Clinton - May 19, 2015


Defense memo to Hillary Clinton within hours of the Sept. 11 Benghazi attack said it was planned at least 10 days in advance - The Daily Caller


Statement: Defense Documents Reveal Obama Administration Knew that Qaeda Had Planned Benghazi Attack 10 Days in Advance - Judicial Watch


Text of the Defense memo to Clinton saying the Benghazi attack was planned at least 10 days in advance - Judicial Watch


Post-Benghazi Memo to Hillary Blamed Muslim Brotherhood and Qaeda Linked Militia - frontpagemag.com


Military intel memos in 2012 detailed arms shipments from Benghazi to Syria rebels, predicted rise of ISIS  - Fox News


VIDEO: US Intel knew about weapons going from Benghazi to Syria rebels - Fox News


Text of the Defense memo detailing arms shipments from Benghazi to Syria - Judicial Watch


Text of the Defense memo reporting on the growing threat posed in Syria and Iraq by what is now known as the Islamic State - Judicial Watch


YouTube and Google win lawsuit in free speech battle over anti-Muslim film that sparked violence in the Middle East and death threats to actors - The Guardian


ARCHIVE: Gregory Hicks: I briefed Hillary on Benghazi that night, attackers were clearly al Sharia terrorists not protestors, Clinton continued to blame anti-Muslim video - Twitchy


VIDEO ARCHIVE: Gregory Hicks: Islamist group February 17 Martrys Brigade in charge of security of the Benghazi US compounds was complicit in the attack by Ansar al-Shariah - YouTube


ARCHIVE: Gregory Hicks Connects Outsourcing of Security to Muslim Terrorists in Benghazi to Company that had Congressman's Wife as Vice Chairman on its Board of Directors - Walid Shoebat


ARCHIVE VIDEO: State Dept Whistle Blower Claim Obama Admin Threats Over Benghazi - YouTube


ARCHIVE: The “Benghazi Brief”, summary of events surrounding the two years leading up to the Benghazi Libya attack on 9/11/12 - theconservativetreehouse


Paul: Benghazi should ‘forever preclude’ Hillary from presidency - TheHill


Rand Paul: Hillary Clinton will have to answer for Libya invasion - Washington Times


Rand Paul in His Forthcoming Book: Iraq War Architects Shouldn't Get To Keep Going On Sunday Shows - BuzzFeed News


Hillary Clinton supported Iraq War -- before she opposed it - Washington Times


Blog: Hillary Clinton was pretty sure Hussein had WMDs - americanthinker.com


POLL: Voters Care About Candidate's View on Iraq - newsmax.com


--------------------------------------------------------

Groups backing trade promotion authority paid Hillary Clinton $2.5M in speaking fees - CBS News


VIDEO: Groups backing trade promotion authority paid Hillary Clinton $2.5M in speaking fees - CBS News


Bernie Sanders criticizes Hillary Clinton for remaining silent on a major trade deal - Washington Times


Hillary Clinton's GMO support and Monsanto ties spark backlash in Iowa, agribusiness has been a big donor to her Foundation - Washington Times


Hillary Clinton was paid millions by tech industry for speeches months before launching a White House bid - The Washington Post


Bill and Hillary Clinton made roughly $25 million in speeches since 2014 - POLITICO


Hillary Clinton healthcare speech earnings - MedCity News


Clinton Family Continues Raking In Personal Cash From Firms That Lobbied Hillary Clinton’s State Department - ibtimes.com


Hillary Clinton personally took money from companies that sought to influence her, speaking fees not going to charity - Vox


Clinton Foundation donors include dozens of media organizations, individuals - POLITICO.com


The Conservative Media Figures Who Donated To The Clinton Foundation - Media Matters for America


Did Stephanopoulos go wrong? Of course he did. He failed to mention that he himself had given $75,000 to the Clinton Foundation - WashingtonExaminer.com


Stephanopoulos, ABC have not fully disclosed Clinton ties: Schweizer - usatoday.com


Unions Pour Millions into Clinton Foundation - Washington Free Beacon


Jeb Bush-Owned Education Company Paid Hillary $225K for Speech - Mediaite


‘Hillary Clinton Sold Her Soul When They Accepted That Money’, The king of Morocco, the Clintons and a problem that just won’t go away - POLITICO Magazine


How did $17 million disappear from Clinton Foundation? - wnd.com


Hillary Clinton's brothers Tony and Hugh Rodham could be a problem for her presidential campaign - Business Insider


Numerous Errors In Clinton Cash Have Been Removed On Kindle - Media Matters for America


State Department won't release Hillary Clinton's emails until January 2016 - POLITICO


Hillary Clinton’s consigliere Cheryl Mills covers up her email scandals - New York Post


This NY Post Op-Ed Attacking Clinton Aide Cheryl D. Mills Is Riddled With Inaccuracies - Media Matters for America


The Mystery Of Hillary's Second Email Address - The Daily Caller


Ex-CIA Deputy Director: Foreign Nations Have Clinton's Emails - newsmax.com


Clinton's super PAC fundraising irks progressives - CNNPolitics.com


Hillary Clinton backers defend link to super PAC - POLITICO


Clinton, Supporters Find Creative Spending Model Amid Super PAC Madness - newsweek.com


Celebrities Who Have Already Endorsed Hillary Clinton for President (PHOTOS) - NationalJournal.com


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To unsubscribe reply with “unsubscribe” in the subject line.

The Vietnam War: After 40 Years

Today, 40 years after the American war in Vietnam ended in ignominious defeat, the traces of that terrible conflict are disappearing.

Former Acting CIA Director Still Acting, Specifically Acting Innocent

At 41:00 in the above video, Sam Husseini asks Michael Morrell, former CIA Deputy and Acting Director 2010-13 about the WMD lies and gets the claim that there weren't any. It would have been nice to have about 10 follow ups. But Husseini shifts to torture, and Morrell claims nobody tortured, and claims that Egypt didn't torture al Libi for the U.S., that the U.S. never asked Egypt to torture him. Then Andrew Kreig asks if McCain met Baghdadi, and Morrell declares with all the wisdom of the CIA "I have no idea."

An Old Man Cries

As I have said before, I am trying to learn Arabic.  It is very difficult but I have been having fun learning and practicing.  I spend a lot of my time down in the suk (market) talking to people and trying to listen to people speak in Arabic.  Some of the guys I have met in the market can speak English so it has been really helpful for me because they can translate things and I can repeat it back to them in Arabic.  So one day, I was in a friend’s shop and of course he invited me to have a cup of tea.  The Palestinian hospitality instilled in each of these guys would never allow me to walk away without them inviting me for a cup of tea or coffee.

Sneaking into Jerusalem

I bought a hiking book that has several hikes around the West Bank.  With everything going on, and all the intensity I need to make sure that I am staying grounded and have a release.  The way I do that best is by hitting the trails.  This weekend I got one of the guys I met at the market to drive me to a trail.  I figured I would give him the money rather than some random taxi.  I was planning on hiking alone but I think he was worried about me so he ended up just taking the day off and coming with me.  At the beginning of the hike, you walk down the mountain towards some train tracks.  On one side of the train tracks (where I started) is a Palestinian village.  On the other side of the tracks, there is no one but the Israelis control it.

Four Years of Waiting

I share with you just one story.  This is just one story. One story, from one person. I meet people every day and hear story after story.  Every day, people who have lived through their own personal trauma.  Like yesterday, the taxi driver.

Teenage Prisoner

 I want to learn Arabic so I study from a book and make flash cards in my free time....which is good.  I don't have a huge social life here but I am slowly meeting people and feeling people out.  So when I have nothing to do, I study!  And then when I am bored with studying, I walk around the old city to the shops and practice my Arabic with people.  The hospitality here is incredible.  Everyone is welcoming me in and inviting me for tea or coffee.  Arabs are famous for their hospitality.  But as I meet people, I hear their stories.  Every day I hear stories about how it is to live here with the occupation. The topic of conversation is always the struggle they live with.  It is hard to deal with.  There is so much pain and suffering here.  I can feel it in the energy and see it in people's eyes when I talk to them.

Crossing the Checkpoint and that Damn Wall

I am not really traveling anymore.

Stories from Behind the Wall-Introduction

My mother suggested writing a book.

Nick Turse: One Boy, One Rifle, and One Morning in Malakal

[Note for TomDispatch Readers: Nick Turse continues his eye-opening reportage on American policy toward Africa today with a piece about the Obama administration and child soldiers. I just wanted to remind you of one thing: his new Dispatch Book on the U.S.

'Tis the Season to Fete War Criminals

William & Mary Honors War Criminal

Exclusive: Condoleezza Rice has crossed the threshold into esteemed celebrity – a welcomed speaker at this year’s College of William and Mary commencement – despite her record as the liar who sold the illegal war in Iraq and choreographed the torture techniques for use at CIA “black sites."

By Ray McGovern

Nothing better illustrates the extent to which the United States has turned its back on the rule of law than when the likes of Condoleezza Rice are asked to address graduates and receive doctoral degrees honoris causa at university commencements. Ms. Rice – in my view a war criminal – was accorded those honors Saturday by the College of William and Mary, the second-oldest college in the U.S.

Speaking Events

2015

May 30 NYC here and here and here

August 27, Chicago

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