Blog of Mass Destruction

Sean Spicer is not the dimmest bulb in the package…he’s the bulb in the package that doesn’t work when you screw the sucker in. Spicer made more negative-news for his boss yesterday by suggesting that Hitler wasn’t even as evil as Basher al-Assad on account of Hitler didn’t even gas his own people! Now, Soicer has apologized, but he was only following his boss’ lead….

Here is what Donald told Fox’s Maria Bartiromo in a pre-taped interview which aired today….

“….I mean even some of the worst tyrants in the world didn’t use the kind of gases that they used. And some of the gases are unbelievably potent.”

Spicer, in his ridiculous statement yesterday, simply embellished what Trump was already saying, by adding the name of Hitler.

Today, however, Sean Spicer let another cat out of the bag…

“I needed to make sure that I…was not in any way shape or form any more of a distraction from the President’s decisive action in Syria and the attempts that he’s making to destabilize the region and root out ISIS out of Syria,” Spicer said.

Trump is “making attempts…to destabilize the region”. According to the guy who speaks for the president, Donald ordered the launching of 59 Tomahawks into a small military airbase in northern Syria…..to help “destabilize the region”. That is much bigger news than Spicer’s Hitler comment yesterday.

At this juncture, it looks like Trump has had his mind changed about regime change in Syria. Trump says he won’t telegraph what he will do…and so, it is possible he is prepared to further “destabilize” an already unstable Syria en route to regime changing Assad. Democrats are complaining that Trump has offered no strategic plan to deal with Syria…but, perhaps, Trump’s non-telegraphing approach, combined with mixed-signal statements by Tillerson about the future of Assad….is a misdirection ploy. Maybe Trump’s plan is regime changing Assad.

Also of interest today is this from former Colin Powell deputy, Lawrence Wilkerson…

“I personally think the provocation was a Tonkin Gulf incident….. Most of my sources are telling me, including members of the team that monitors global chemical weapons –including people in Syria, including people in the US Intelligence Community–that what most likely happened …was that they hit a warehouse that they had intended to hit…and this warehouse was alleged to have to ISIS supplies in it, and… some of those supplies were precursors for chemicals….. conventional bombs hit the warehouse, and due to a strong wind, and the explosive power of the bombs, they dispersed these ingredients and killed some people.”

And, here’s what Vlad Putin had to say….

“You all know that the Syrian government has repeatedly asked the international community to come and inspect the sites where the rebels used chemical weapons. But they always ignored those requests. The only time the international community has responded, was to this last incident. So, what do I think?

“I think we can figure out what’s going on by just using a little common sense. The Syrian army was winning the war, in some places they had the rebels completely surrounded. For them to throw it all away and give their trump card to the people who have been calling for regime change is, frankly, a crock of shit.”.

Hard to argue with Putin’s logic there. More later.

Blog of Mass Destruction

Here is a typical take from the alternate-facts, right-wing media over something, something, that Susan Rice was alleged to have done. Fox “News”, April 4th…

…it appears that Rice, possibly at the behest of President Obama, collected and distributed classified information about Trump and his associates with the sole purpose of politically damaging the incoming president. 

On April 5th, Donald accused Ms. Rice of having committed a “crime”…

President Trump took aim Wednesday at Susan E. Rice, a national security adviser under President Obama, saying he thinks she committed a crime by using U.S. intelligence agencies to spy on Trump campaign officials.

“I think it’s going to be the biggest story,” Mr. Trump said in an interview with The New York Times. “It’s such an important story for our country and the world. It is one of the big stories of our time.”

 The newspaper pressed Mr. Trump on whether he thought Ms. Rice broke the law.

“Do I think? Yes, I think,” he responded.

According to the pitiful Devin Nunes, the Trump-servant saw super-secret documents where “unmasking” of Trump associates had occurred. Immediately, the conservative noise machine went into action…and in no time the fake news account became that Susan Rice had busied herself in the transition period “unmasking” names of Trump associates, circulating those names around the intelligence community, all for the purpose of politically damaging the new Trump presidency before it began.

Although in the alternate-reality that is conservative “news”, the Rice “unmasking” snipe-hunt legend will live on….yesterday, CNN reported this….

After a review of the same intelligence reports brought to light by House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes, both Republican and Democratic lawmakers and aides have so far found no evidence that Obama administration officials did anything unusual or illegal, multiple sources in both parties tell CNN.

Their private assessment contradicts President Donald Trump’s allegations that former Obama national security adviser Susan Rice broke the law by requesting the “unmasking” of US individuals’ identities. Trump had claimed the matter was a “massive story.” 
“both Republican and Democratic lawmakers”…”found no evidence”. No evidence of any political “unmasking”, no evidence of anything illegal or even unusual.
What the week-long, Nunes-led, “007”-intrigue-filled smearing of Susan Rice did accomplish was divert main media’s attention away from the FBI’s investigation into Trump campaign-Russian coordination during last year’s election season. And, of course, that was the objective when Devin Nunes announced his late night snipe-hunt had…no kidding…found a snipe.
And that brings us to the most recent and most important bit of news…..news that will be labeled “fake” by the usual suspects by close of business hours today….or avoided altogether. But this is big news
The FBI obtained a secret court order last summer to monitor the communications of an adviser to presidential candidate Donald Trump, part of an investigation into possible links between Russia and the campaign, law enforcement and other U.S. officials said.

The FBI and the Justice Department obtained the warrant targeting Carter Page’s communications after convincing a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court judge that there was probable cause to believe Page was acting as an agent of a foreign power, in this case Russia, according to the officials.

The government’s application for the surveillance order targeting Page included a lengthy declaration that laid out investigators’ basis for believing that Page was an agent of the Russian government and knowingly engaged in clandestine intelligence activities on behalf of Moscow, officials said.

Since the 90-day warrant was first issued, it has been renewed more than once by the FISA court, the officials said.

The WAPO piece states that Carter Page is the only Trumper surveilled under a FISA warrant. We’ll see if that assertion holds up. Readers should take in the entire WAPO piece….it’s much more riveting reading than reports on snipe-hunting expeditions.

My guess is that alternative-news of the conservative kind will try to make WAPO’s latest into an “illegal leak” story. There will be many more “deep state” references from Foxians now…and fact-free screeds…and wild-eyed speculations about how “embedded” Obama-ites in the intelligence community are out to get Trump….and how the leak of last July’s FISA warrant information proves their fake news narrative.

But, consider: With this latest revelation, we now know that a former campaign associate of Donald Trump…one who did not leave the Trump campaign until last September…has been under investigation by the FBI since last July for “acting as an agent of a foreign power, in this case Russia..”

As Joe Biden so famously put it….that is a big fucking deal.

 

No Proof Assad Ordered Chemical Bombs

Here’s someone else who doesn’t see the incentive for Assad to use chemical weapons…

In both cases – 2013 and 2017 – there were strong reasons to doubt Assad’s responsibility. In 2013, he had just invited United Nations inspectors into Syria to investigate cases of alleged rebel use of chemical weapons and thus it made no sense that he would launch a sarin attack in the Damascus suburbs, guaranteeing that the U.N. inspectors would be diverted to that case.

Similarly, now, Assad’s military has gained a decisive advantage over the rebels and he had just scored a major diplomatic victory with the Trump administration’s announcement that the U.S. was no longer seeking regime change” in Syria. The savvy Assad would know that a chemical weapon attack now would likely result in U.S. retaliation and jeopardize the gains that his military has achieved with Russian and Iranian help. 

Any person who is not simply knee-jerking around for political advantage realizes that Assad has absolutely zero incentive to use chemical weapons.

But here’s more….including why whatever agent was released in the bombing…it wasn’t sarin gas…

  1. The Russians briefed the United States on the proposed target. This is a process that started more than two months ago. There is a dedicated phone line that is being used to coordinate and deconflict (i.e., prevent US and Russian air assets from shooting at each other) the upcoming operation.
  2. The United States was fully briefed on the fact that there was a target in Idlib that the Russians believes was a weapons/explosives depot for Islamic rebels.
  3. The Syrian Air Force hit the target with conventional weapons. All involved expected to see a massive secondary explosion. That did not happen. Instead, smoke, chemical smoke, began billowing from the site. It turns out that the Islamic rebels used that site to store chemicals, not sarin, that were deadly. The chemicals included organic phosphates and chlorine and they followed the wind and killed civilians.
  4. There was a strong wind blowing that day and the cloud was driven to a nearby village and caused casualties.
  5. We know it was not sarin. How? Very simple. The so-called “first responders” handled the victims without gloves. If this had been sarin they would have died. Sarin on the skin will kill you. How do I know? I went through “Live Agent” training at Fort McClellan in Alabama.

That’s from someone with experience in these matters.

Donald has been receiving praise from, yes, “establishment” media, the “enemy” of the people, over ordering the launch of those fucking “beautiful” weapons….weapons that were allegedly sent on their mission from the airfield that was still perfectly in tact after the fucking “retaliation”. What sense does any of that make? I mean, other than pumping fists and shouting USA, USA, USA. After the U.S. Tomahawks were wasted….the airstrip was still perfectly in tact….planes flew out the very next day.

I’ve mentioned in the past that the only policy where there is still bipartisanship in Congress is…war. America is the most blood-thirsty nation on earth…again, you may disagree…but it’s still true. And it would appear that blowing shit up in foreign countries, preferably Muslim countries, is the only thing that unites our reds and blues anymore.

One final thought. We’re being told by Tillerson, Spicer, etc that Donald had to take action because chemical agents are present inside Syria…and those chemical agents might get into the hands of “bad people”…who might use them against U.S. military members whom Assad has not invited into his country. I think that is the flimsiest bunch of bullshit I’ve heard recently. Chemical agents have been used some 20 times in the ISIS battle over Mosul, Iraq…..all by jihadist types. Is Trump aware of that? Does he care?

What do you think?

 

White Nationalists Blame Non-White Victim

MSNBC said on Tuesday that it was “working hard to confirm” that a 69-year-old passenger who was dragged from a United Airlines flight had a “run-ins with the law,” although it was not immediately clear why a criminal history would be relevant to the current case.

“We are now getting several tabloid reports which we are working hard to confirm,” NBC’s Tom Costello told MSNBC host Ali Velshi. “This man is in fact a 69-year-old doctor from Kentucky who himself has had run-ins with the law.”

I heard Rush Limbaugh today also railing on the victim of United Airlines abuse of it’s pre-paid passengers. Most likely, the lily white fat man who lies on a radio program for 3 hours five days a week enjoyed verbally abusing the victim…because the victim was not lily white. Just how the white-nationalist rolls.

But seriously, what do past “run ins with the law” have to do with dragging a paid customer, blood trickling from his face, down the aisle and out the door of an OVERBOOKED United flight? Did the victim overbook the fucking flight?

Even the best of us white boys have smatterings of racial thoughts running around in our heads. You may disagree…but it’s still true. Yet, the white boys at MSNBC….are “working hard” to “confirm” those “run ins” in the passenger’s past….and my question is…why? What’s the objective?

I’ve watched MSNBC adjust it’s lineup to more closely resemble the fair and balanced liars at rival Fox. But is it actually necessary for MSNBC to promote white nationalism because Trump and his devoted followers believe in a whites-only America?

Why would MSNBC seek to justify United Airlines for their self-made clusterfuck by looking to blame a victim of that clusterfuck? What’s to be gained? What’s the point?

Rush talked about how the victim was “belligerent”. Who the hell could blame him for being belligerent?

Tell me what you think. If you are not aware of the news story….go here.

Authentic Fake News

From the beginning of 2002 until U.S. forces began blowing up Iraq in March 2003, the Bushies worked hand in hand with main U.S. media outlets to sell the criminal war to the American people. Because of that Bushies/media coordination 4500 U.S. soldiers lost their lives in a needless war, tens of thousands more were wounded or suffer PTSD, and the Bushies dismantling of Saddam’s military led directly to the formation of ISIS.

The same dynamic has been at work with the civil-war torn country of Syria. All Serious media members, and almost all Serious elected-officials, accept the still-unproven notion that President Assad ordered chemical weapons to be used inside Syria.

But not this U.S. House representative….a veteran…

Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard said she’s “skeptical” that Bashar al-Assad’s regime was behind the chemical weapons attack that killed dozens of people in Syria.

CNN’s Wolf Blitzer asked Gabbard if she didn’t believe the President, the secretary of state and Pentagon officials, all of whom came to the same conclusion: that Assad’s regime was responsible. Gabbard mentioned the previous invasion of Iraq, and the intelligence that suggested Iraq had weapons of mass destruction, which turned out to be false. “So, yes, I’m skeptical,” she said.
 
 Gabbard said: “Why should we just blindly follow this escalation of a counterproductive regime-change war?”  
Here’s Robert Parry, making the same argument I’ve been making….
Assad’s military has gained a decisive advantage over the rebels and he had just scored a major diplomatic victory with the Trump administration’s announcement that the U.S. was no longer seeking “regime change” in Syria. The savvy Assad would know that a chemical weapon attack now would likely result in U.S. retaliation and jeopardize the gains that his military has achieved with Russian and Iranian help.
Assad had no incentive to use chemical weapons. And he had every incentive not to.
…former CIA officer Philip Giraldi reported hearing from his intelligence contacts in the field that they were shocked at how the new poison-gas story was being distorted by Trump and the mainstream U.S. news media.  

Giraldi told Scott Horton’s Webcast: “I’m hearing from sources on the ground in the Middle East, people who are intimately familiar with the intelligence that is available who are saying that the essential narrative that we’re all hearing about the Syrian government or the Russians using chemical weapons on innocent civilians is a sham.”

“The intelligence confirms pretty much the account that the Russians have been giving … which is that they hit a warehouse where the rebels – now these are rebels that are, of course, connected with Al Qaeda – where the rebels were storing chemicals of their own and it basically caused an explosion that resulted in the casualties. Apparently the intelligence on this is very clear.”

“People in both the agency [the CIA] and in the military who are aware of the intelligence are freaking out about this because essentially Trump completely misrepresented what he already should have known – but maybe he didn’t – and they’re afraid that this is moving toward a situation that could easily turn into an armed conflict,” Giraldi said before Thursday night’s missile strike. “They are astonished by how this is being played by the administration and by the U.S. media.”

Last month, in Iraq….

…the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) announced that their doctors were treating five children and two women for exposure to chemical agents, adding that it “condemns in the strongest possible terms the use of chemical weapons during fighting around the Iraqi city of Mosul.”

Citing data collected by the research firm IHS Markit, Reuters reports “the Islamic State used chemical weapons at least 52 times in Iraq and Syria and at least 19 times in the areas around Mosul between 2014 and November 2016.”

You might think that clear evidence like that would make U.S. media a bit cautious about jumping onto the propaganda wagon…and especially so when considering their history of assisting the Bushies in misleading Americans about some fucking imminent threat from Saddam’s Iraq, a threat which never existed. But like sick lap dogs, main media is back lapping up their own disgusting 2002-2003 vomit.

The U.S. has a very long history of misleading Americans into middle eastern conflicts. Consider this from 1990, just before the first Gulf War began….

A young woman who gave only her first name, Nayira, testified that she had been a volunteer at Kuwait’s al-Adan hospital, where she had seen Iraqi troops rip scores of babies out of incubators, leaving them “to die on the cold floor.” Between tears, she described the incident as “horrifying.”

Her account was a bombshell. Portions of her testimony were aired that evening on ABC’s “Nightline” and NBC’s “Nightly News.” Seven US senators cited her testimony in speeches urging Americans to support the war, and George HW Bush repeated the story on 10 separate occasions in the weeks that followed.

That story was a total fabrication….

Subsequent investigations by Amnesty International, a division of Human Rights Watch and independent journalists would show that the story was entirely bogus — a crucial piece of war propaganda the American media swallowed hook, line and sinker. Iraqi troops had looted Kuwaiti hospitals, but the gruesome image of babies dying on the floor was a fabrication.

In 1992, John MacArthur revealed in The New York Times that Nayirah was in fact the daughter of Saud Nasir al-Sabah, Kuwait’s ambassador to the US. Her testimony had been organized by a group called Citizens for a Free Kuwait, which was a front for the Kuwaiti government.

Fake news, and false flag operations have been a part of our military-industrial-complex’s “toolbag” for decades. Regime changers need a pre-text for attacking middle eastern countries….so they create their own….pass it along to main media members…who, then, characterize the information as accurate and above reproach.

Today, it’s happening all over again with Syria.

 

With all the excitement over Republicans successfully stealing a Supreme Court seat and the even more exciting news that Trump ordered an unlawful missile attack into Homs, Syria….the March job report has not received much attention.

A reminder of what Sean Spicer said about the last jobs report…White House press secretary Sean Spicer claimed without evidence Friday that the jobs figures “may have been phony in the past, but it’s very real now.” 

Are they still “real”?

In the third employment report of Donald J. Trump’s young presidency, the economy gained just 98,000 jobs in March, lower than the 180,000 expected. It’s also down markedly from gains of 219,000 in February and 216,000 in January. 

The new March jobs number came in at almost half of what “experts” expected. And there’s also this….

The economy added just 98,000 jobs last month, far below expectations, and the January and February jobs number were revised downward by 38,000.

I’ve looked….Sean Spicer didn’t have any clever things to say about the March jobs report. Perhaps the Bureau of Labor has also been infiltrated by “deep state” Obama-bots…but only in between the February jobs report and the March jobs report. Congress should probably, you know, investigate.

The NY Times reports that the White House response to the March jobs number has been…”muted”.

The response from the White House, which crowed last month after more than 200,000 jobs were produced in Mr. Trump’s first full month in office, was muted Friday. 

Gary D. Cohn, the former Goldman Sachs executive who is director of the White House’s National Economic Council, emphasized the decline in the unemployment rate. “When you look at the jobs report as a whole, I think there’s an awful lot of good news in here,” he told Fox Business Network. Congressional Democrats took a dimmer view.

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Meanwhile, about that strongman-Trump-ordered missile attack on a Syrian airfield….

(Sec. of State Rex) Tillerson said the strike took out about 20 percent of the seventh wing of the Syrian air force and hit a fueling facility. The base’s runway was still in use.

And how much did Trump’s impulsive action cost U.S. taxpayers?

Fifty-nine tomahawk missiles launched from an aircraft carrier hit their target. At $1.59 million a piece, the attack cost the Defense Department $93,810,000. 

Yet, there’s still no change in the Trump administration’s strategy towards the Syrian conflict.

Should Trump’s impulsive action become the norm…..shoot first, figure out some strategy later, or not at all….then “war president”-loving media will have much praiseworthy material to write about in the future.

The problem with America’s alleged outrage over the sarin-gas incident in Syria this week…..is that the outrage is selective. Jihad attacks have become a politicized-weapon to use, selectively of course, to encourage specific action, usually involving bombing. Yes, those Syrian infants provoked empathy…as well as outrage…however, where is the blanket-coverage, the outrage, the gruesome images, the calls to bomb…something, over the slaughter, also this week, of these 20 darker-skinned women…

At least 20 people – mostly women – traveling in a minibus were killed after a roadside bomb exploded in Lower Shabelle in southern Somalia on Thursday (6 April). 

A neutral observer might think that even America’s outrage over mass killings has a racist element to it. Are those 20 dead black Somalian women’s lives worth less than those lighter-skinned Syrian casualties?

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A few readers have found my new location….so, I’ll continue to monitor traffic flow.

I thank Ohio.com for hosting my blog for….over nine years. I’ve written thousands of posts for them, all advertiser-supported, and without ever asking for, or receiving, a penny. I don’t especially appreciate not being given prior notice of being shut down….but that’s just the way the professionals do things.

Reactions To Trump’s Political Stunt

A few of the reactions from media to Trump’s political action last night launching 60 Tomahawk missiles to destroy an Assad military airfield….

@FareedZakaria on Syria strikes: “I think Donald Trump became President of the United States” last night

Fox’s Jeanine Pirro: Trump’s Missile Launch “Made Americans Proud … Made People All Around The World Proud.”

Conservative Pundit Dana Loesch: Trump’s Order Demonstrates “A Level Of Decisiveness That We Have Not Seen in These Past Eight Years.”

And my personal favorite, including the word “dither”…which I predicted…

Townhall’s Kurt Schlichter: “Like Him Or Loathe Him,” Trump “Made A Call And Did Not Dither.”

Some in the fever swamps were not as impressed as some in the Village.

Here’s one of Alex Jones’ InfoWar writers….

I guess Trump wasn’t “Putin’s puppet” after all, he was just another deep state/Neo-Con puppet.

I’m officially OFF the Trump train.

Ann Coulter…

Trump campaigned on not getting involved in Mideast. Said it always helps our enemies & creates more refugees. Then he saw a picture on TV.

So, mixed bag.

However, this Breitbart article detailing last night’s strike has riled up the wingers who frequent there…..there are currently…..wait for it….over 46,000 comments attached to the piece. And from skimming a few pages of those comments….they are not pleased with Trump’s action…not what they voted for.

And then, there’s this….

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said Friday that U.S.-Russia relations were “completely ruined” after U.S. President Donald Trump approved a military strike against a Syrian air field Thursday night, and that the United States was “[o]n the verge of a military clash with Russia.”

“One more thing,” Medvedev’s statement concluded. “This military action is a clear indication of the US President’s extreme dependency on the opinion of the Washington establishment, the one that the new president strongly criticized in his inauguration speech. Soon after his victory, I noted that everything would depend on how soon Trump’s election promises would be broken by the existing power machine. It took only two and a half months.”

Like the Trump administration itself, the reaction to last night’s strike in Syria seems to be all over the board. Neo-cons, warmongerers and regime changers are very pleased.

But as I mentioned this morning, there’s been no change in strategy in regard to Syria by the the Trump administration…

White House press secretary Sean Spicer avoided answering on Friday whether President Donald Trump’s decision to order a missile strike against a Syrian airfield on Thursday indicated that he thought Syrian President Bashar Assad should relinquish power.

I’m still sticking with my original reaction which is that the strike was an impulsive, knee-jerk action to convey the political message: Trump is strong and decisive. He’s neither.

From my reading, it seems that Trump warned Syria, and Russia, before the strike…so, I have no idea what the hell the meaning of the strike was. Is Assad now on Trump’s regime change list? If not, then WTF?

Here’s what Russia is saying about the alleged use of sarin-gas by Assad’s military….

“Syrian aviation made a strike on a large terrorist ammunition depot and a concentration of military hardware in the eastern outskirts of Khan Sheikhoun,”  Russian defense ministry spokesman Igor Konoshenkov said in a video statement, referring to the rebel-held town in northern Syria where the deaths occurred Tuesday.

He said “chemical-laden weapons” made by rebels at the site had previously been used by militants in Iraq — an apparent reference to a report last month from the International Committee of the Red Cross that toxic agents had been used in fighting near Mosul.

I don’t question that President Assad is a thuggish character….but I still fail to see what incentive Assad had to use chemical weapons. Russian assistance has led to progress in Assad’s fight against radical extremists. So, unless Assad is truly a homicidal maniac….he has nothing to gain, and a lot to lose, by using chemical weapons.

Lots of posturing going on….both here and around the world….and I expect it will take awhile for everything to shake out.

But while it does, there is going to be a shift in support for the Trump presidency. Main media members just love a “war president”, one who likes to bomb foreigners in foreign countries. I expect many in the Goldilocks, just-right, “center” to show support now for the unfit man in the White House….while at the same time, many on the far-right, I expect, will drop their support of the so-called president.

Everything political is in a state of chaos….and Trump is launching Tomahawks into Syria because he saw images on teevee that were very disturbing.