By Joseph Fitsanakis
A list of high-priority intelligence targets published over the weekend includes the names of over a hundred current and former heads of state, who were systematically targeted by the United States National Security Agency (NSA). The list appears to be part of a wider “Target Knowledge Base” assembled by the NSA in order to help produce “complete profiles” of what the NSA calls “high-priority intelligence targets”.
The list is contained in a classified top-secret briefing created by the NSA in 2009. It was published by German newsmagazine Der Spiegel, which said it acquired it from American intelligence defector Edward Snowden. Snowden, a former computer expert for the NSA and the Central Intelligence Agency, is currently living in Russia, where he has been offered political asylum.
by Stephen Lendman
On Sunday, both men met for further talks. They did so in Paris. They discussed Ukraine for four hours. Nothing was resolved.
Kerry demands business as usual. He wants Washington rules enforced. He wants Ukrainians having no say.
Lavrov wants fundamental rule of law principles observed. He wants Ukraine free from fascist putschists.
He wants legitimate governance replacing them. He wants what Ukrainians want. He wants what Washington won't permit. A post-meeting Kerry statement said in part:
"The US and Russia have differences of opinion about the events that led to this crisis."
"Both sides made suggestions on ways to deescalate the security and political situation in and around Ukraine."
by Stephen Lendman
It's back to the future. It's reminiscent of Cold War fearmongering. It claimed the Russians are coming.
Norman Jewison's 1966 film titled "The Russians Are Coming, The Russians Are Coming" portrayed a Soviet threat, albeit satirically.
Today, outrageous headlines irresponsibly suggest Russian hordes threaten Ukraine. Truth is polar opposite. It doesn't matter.
On March 28, Ukraine's propaganda news service Ukrinform headlined "Russia continues to redeploy troops to Ukrainian border."
It quoted Kiev's Military and Political Studies Center head Dmytro Tymchuk saying:
"According to live data of the Information Resistance group, redeployment of Russian troops to the border of Russia with Ukraine has continued over the past day."
by Stephen Lendman
It's malicious. It's unrelenting. Big Lies repeat one after another. Official sources announce them.
Media scoundrels regurgitate them as gospel. It's standard practice. Agitprop substitutes for accurate reporting.
Ukraine crisis misinformation proliferates. Responsible Russian replies get short shrift. Often they're ignored. Sometimes they're twisted irresponsibly.
On March 28, Vladimir Putin said professional Russian action saved Crimean bloodshed. He thanked "the command and service members of the Black Sea Fleet, other units and formations based in Crimea, for their stamina and personal courage."
He praised their "clear and professional actions." They "avoid(ed) provocations and prevent(ed) bloodshed and ensure(d) conditions for a peaceful and free referendum."
Mahboob A. Khawaja, PhD
Towards Understanding the Political Monsters of History
Contemporary superpowers are mere assumed names and abstract titles, not the compelling reality of the global political affairs. Why nothing good comes out of the combined resources of the global institutional working? One perspective could be that if nations of the world are fragmented, soon they will be stagnated and the global warriors would dominate and control them effectively for all purposes. Imagine, if the 21st century informed global community had proactive, moral and intellectual leadership, the global mankind would have embraced the ideas and ideals of future-making to transform the 20th century’s individual endeavors into measurable advancement and to pave the ways for the coming of the 21st century knowledge-based changes as progressive civilizations.
by Stephen Lendman
On March 28, UN Human Rights Council members voted 32 - 4 to renew investigating war crimes in Syria for another year. Eleven members abstained.
Washington, Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, Jordan and Morocco initiated the resolution.
Other HRC members were bullied for support. Washington and Western partners threatened refusers with consequences.
Russia, China, Venezuela and Cuba voted no. So-called investigations are biased. They're one-sided. They largely blame Assad for insurgent crimes. They do so duplicitously.
UK ambassador Karen Piece said three resolution aims include:
By Khalid Amayreh
The convenient local election victory earned by the quasi-Islamic ruling party in Turkey, headed by Recep Tayyip Erdogan, is a very bad news for the enemies of freedom and enemies of Islam in the region and beyond.
It is bad news for the ultra-secularist but-sectarian-minded enemies of Islam at the Turkish arena who have been making rabid efforts of late to scuttle Turkey's successful Islamic experiment.
These forces, eager to take Turkey back to the days of military tyranny, have been organizing vociferous protests against the government. Their demands had a thin façade of legitimacy as they raised slogans against government despotism and corruption. However, their real opposition centered on Erdogan's Islamic approach. They simply wanted Erdogan to turn his back on Islam, something that no dignified and honorable Muslim could ever do.
Finally there is a much needed debate about the relationship that people who are working for progressive change should have with the Democratic Party. This is a debate that has existed at the edges, in email discussions and private conversations, but is now moving to center stage.
The current debate began with an article in Harper’s, Nothing Left, by Adolph Reed criticizing how the Democratic Party has limited the agenda of the left. It was followed by articles by historian Mike Konczal writing in The New Republic and Harold Meyerson writing in the Democratic Party-leaning American Prospect who took the view that the “left” needs to work within the Democratic Party. Richard Eskow of Campaign for America’s Future, also a Democratic Party-leaning group, published two articles. The first said this debate was long overdue and concluded the left must not limit itself to the Democratic Party agenda. The second seemed to put aside differences on partisanship and urged us to get to the work of building a movement. In this article he also provided excellent responses to Konczal and Meyerson.
by Stephen Lendman
Welcome to police state Turkey. It's no democracy. Claiming otherwise is a convenient illusion.
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is tyrannical. He's ruthless. He blames victims for his crimes. He's unapologetic.
He heads Ankara's rogue government. Turkey is one of 28 NATO countries. Erdogan partners with Washington's imperial wars.
He's part of Obama's agenda to ravage and destroy Syria. At issue is ousting Assad. It's replacing him with pro-Western puppet leadership.
It's denying Syrians all rights. It's exploiting them ruthlessly. It's stealing Syrian resources. It's eliminating an Israeli rival. It's isolating Iran before targeting its government the same way.
It's reckless. It's lawless. It's out-of-control. It risks regional war. It risks expanding it globally. It risks what no responsible leader would dare. It's happening in real time.
by Ellen Brown
“As things stand, the banks are the permanent government of the country, whichever party is in power.”
– Lord Skidelsky, House of Lords, UK Parliament, 31 March 2011)
On March 20, 2014, European Union officials reached an historic agreement to create a single agency to handle failing banks. Media attention has focused on the agreement involving the single resolution mechanism (SRM), a uniform system for closing failed banks. But the real story for taxpayers and depositors is the heightened threat to their pocketbooks of a deal that now authorizes both bailouts and “bail-ins” – the confiscation of depositor funds. The deal involves multiple concessions to different countries and may be illegal under the rules of the EU Parliament; but it is being rushed through to lock taxpayer and depositor liability into place before the dire state of Eurozone banks is exposed. The bail-in provisions were agreed to last summer. According to Bruno Waterfield, writing in the UK Telegraph in June 2013:
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