HERE IS HOW TO DEFEAT PUTIN

We Know How To Stop Vladimir Putin Once And For All. The Following Is The Strategic Approach We Offer To The American Empire Free Of Charge.

(Please, Be Prepared For Just A “Bit” Of Sarcasm.)

Before we reveal our unstoppable plan, we must first understand that the Associated Press has just informed us that it is a “baseless conspiracy theory” that America is responsible for sabotaging the Nord Stream pipelines which were set up to carry Russian gas to Germany, and that this baseless conspiracy theory is being promoted solely by Russia and far-right groups.

The Kremlin and Russian state media are aggressively pushing a baseless conspiracy theory blaming the United States for damage to natural gas pipelines in the Baltic Sea in what analysts said Friday is another effort to split the U.S. and its European allies,” AP tells us. “The Russian position is also reverberating on social media forums popular with American conservatives and far-right groups.”

The suggestion that the U.S. caused the damage was circulating on online forums popular with American conservatives and followers of QAnon, a conspiracy theory movement which asserts that Trump is fighting a battle against a Satanic child-trafficking sect that controls world events,” AP reports.

This information may come as a surprise to the many people who are unaware that promoting this claim means they are necessarily either Russian or far-right QAnon Satanic pedophile conspiracy theorists, like for example Poland’s former foreign minister and current sitting member of European Parliament Radek Sikorski, who openly thanked the United States for exploding the pipelines.

The news that this conspiracy theory is “baseless” may also come as a surprise to those who’ve noted that both President Biden and his Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland explicitly said that Nord Stream 2 would be brought to an end if Russia invades Ukraine, that America sanctioned those who built Nord Stream 2, that DC insiders are on record saying they want Europeans to be more dependent on North American energy than on pipelines from Russia, that Germans had just been angrily demanding an end to American-led sanctions on Russia and a reopening of Nord Stream gas, that American naval forces were recently conducting unmanned underwater vehicle drills right where the pipelines were attacked, that unmanned underwater vehicles have been found carrying explosive charges near Russian pipelines in the past, that Poland literally just inaugurated a gas pipeline that will transport gas from Norway through Denmark and the Baltic Sea, that American military helicopters were recorded traveling between the two blast points and along the Nord Stream 2 pipeline shortly before the explosions, that the American empire has an explicitly stated policy of ensuring that no powers develop that could challenge its global hegemony including in Europe, and that the CIA has a known history of blowing up Russian gas pipelines.

But it’s in the news, so it’s definitely true. They’re not allowed to lie. America is not guilty.

So if it’s a crazy Russian-Satan-pedophile-QAnon crackpot conspiracy theory to believe the American government or its imperial proxies may have had something to do with the sabotage of Russian pipelines, who did it?

Well, this is going to blow your mind because of how wildly counter-intuitive it is, but here’s the answer: Russia.

This is according to such ever-impartial and totally trustworthy experts as former CIA director John Brennan, who says that “Russia certainly is the most likely suspect,” and NATO think tanker Alexander Vershbow, who says Putin blew up his own pipelines instead of simply closing a valve because he wanted to show the world that he is a “madman”.

The sabotage of the Nord Stream pipelines further reinforces the image of Putin as madman, which might persuade some allies to push for a ceasefire and negotiations that would inevitably mean Ukraine giving up significant amounts of territory,” Vershbow told The Atlantic’s Susan B Glaser.

So there you have it. Russia, not the American empire, is responsible for destroying billions of dollars of its own economic and energy infrastructure and releasing hundreds of millions of dollars of its own gas and ending its crucial point of leverage over Europe in direct facilitation of American geostrategic interests and in direct subversion of its own, because Putin is a crazy lunatic. If it wasn’t true, they couldn’t report it in the news.

So are you ready for our brilliant strategy on how to defeat Putin? Here it is: simply stand back and wait for him to explode the rest of Russia.

This is after all the same madman who the New York Times informs us has been ordering his troops to shell a nuclear power plant they already control. If Putin is a gibbering, irrational lunatic who enjoys blowing up his own stuff for no reason other than to act crazy, surely if we just stand back and leave him to his own devices he will soon turn the Russian Federation into a steaming pile of rubble.

Honestly we can’t believe it’s taken us to figure this out on behalf of the American empire. You’d think with all the brilliant minds in the American government and the mainstream news media would have figured this one out by themselves, but apparently they need a little help sometimes. Any DC think tanks are welcome to respond to this post with any lucrative employment offers they care to extend in order to learn how to do anything else they want to do.

You are welcome in advance. Here’s looking forward to Putin’s self-inflicted downfall.

CHINA AND INDIA ARE NEUTRAL ON THE RUSSIAN ANNEXATION

The Media Has Convoluted Some Recent Statements To Suggest That New Delhi And Beijing Were Getting Fed Up With Putin.

Diplomats from China and India may be willing to talk to their Russian counterparts behind the scenes to tamp down the talk of nuclear war, but in the public arena appear uninterested right now in distancing themselves entirely from the Putin regime and its actions in Ukraine.

Russia voted against and effectively vetoed a resolution condemning its annexation of Ukrainian territories on Friday. China, India, Brazil and Gabon abstained.

According to the AP, if passed the resolution would have declared the annexations illegal and demanded an immediate and unconditional withdrawal of all Russia’s military forces from Ukraine.

Reports and op-eds this week suggested there was a back channeling effort afoot by American diplomats to encourage China and India to put pressure on Putin to ease up on the nuclear weapons talk and restrain the potential for their use in Ukraine. These reports seemed to be a bolstered, in part, from public comments made by both countries’ leaders and diplomats during the UN General Assembly meeting last week.

In an op-ed for the Washington Post, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mike Mullen, former U.S. Senator Sam Nunn, and former U.S. energy secretary Ernest J. Moniz, expressed a level of confidence that Chinese leader Xi Jinping was primed to put the necessary pressure on Putin:

Given Russia’s increasing economic and geopolitical reliance on Beijing, Putin cannot afford an irreparable rift with Xi. A public statement by Xi regarding the unacceptability of nuclear use by Russia in Ukraine would certainly have an impact on Putin. Xi could underline the point by reminding Putin of China’s continuing importance as the No. 1 destination for his energy exports, noting this would have to be reassessed if Putin were to use nuclear weapons.”

This may well be true but last Friday’s UN Security Council vote reminds us that China and India remain unaligned at best with the West, if not slightly differential to Russia for which they both have economic and geopolitical ties that leaders are not yet willing to break. Neither have been persuaded to commit to Western sanctions on Russia.

Next week the entire UN General Assembly will be asked to vote on a similar resolution condemning the Russian annexations as illegal. It will be interesting to see whether the Global South countries that have been resistant to the West’s coalition-building against Russia will be persuaded to join now as Putin has taken the war up a notch.

It may also show that America and its Western allies have a lot more work to do to align the world behind its strategy, which for now is focused solely on exacting more sanctions on Russia (to the detriment of the broader global economy) and pouring more weapons into Ukraine (at the risk of World War III).

THE RESPONSE BY BIDEN TO THE THE MURDER OF SHIREEN ABUD AKLEH WAS TERRIBLE

His Administration Is Signaling That Israel Is Held To A Different, Lower Standard Than Anyone Else Despite Their Abuses. This Is Racist And Evil.

On May 11, an Israeli soldier murdered Palestinian-American journalist Shireen Abu Akleh in Jenin, and months later the perpetrator of this outrageous crime is still no closer to being brought to justice.

The need to hold the shooter accountable is clear. A new investigation by the Palestinian human rights organization Al Haq confirmed the findings of multiple reports from the UN, human rights groups, and media outlets earlier in the year, and their investigation shows that Abu Akleh was targeted and killed while clearly wearing a vest identifying her as a member of the press.

The report also confirmed that no other shots were fired in the area on that morning except for the bullets coming from the position of Israeli forces, so there was no fighting in the vicinity and no possibility that the shooting occurred in a crossfire. Shireen Abu Akleh was shot at with such precision that there can be no doubt that she was deliberately targeted.

After initially denying responsibility and attempting to shift the blame to non-existent Palestinian gunmen, the Israeli government conceded that it was “highly probable” that one of their soldiers was responsible for her death, but they still claimed it was an accident and will not take any further action.

The Biden administration has gone along with this weak cover story, and it has played its part in trying to whitewash the shooting. By all accounts, the administration has made no serious effort to seek accountability for Abu Akleh’s murder, and their overall response to the Israeli government’s handling of the killing has been abysmal. Nearly five months since the shooting, there has been no American investigation, and there is no evidence of any diplomatic pressure being brought to bear on the Israeli government by the administration. The State Department has paid lip service to the idea of accountability, but neither Secretary of State Antony Blinken nor President Biden has shown any interest in taking any actions that might lead to justice.

We will not know the full story without a thorough investigation by our government, but, given what we already know, it is impossible to believe that the killing was accidental. As the Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem has said, the killing of Abu Akleh was not an accident, but the “predictable result” of an open-fire policy in the occupied Palestinian territories that has claimed the lives of many other innocent Palestinians.

If the Biden administration were serious about its desire to prevent anything like this from happening again, they would be taking a very different, much more combative approach to the entrenchment of the Israeli occupation that has been going on for decades with American backing.

The lack of action on this case has prompted members of Congress from both parties to call for an FBI investigation to no avail, but now some of them have begun threatening to use leverage to get a full accounting of what happened. As The Guardian reported earlier this week, “The longest-serving member of the US Senate, Patrick Leahy, recently upped the ante by warning that Israel’s failure to fully explain the Al-Jazeera reporter’s killing could jeopardize America’s huge military aid to the Jewish state under a law he sponsored 25 years ago cutting weapons supplies to countries that abuse human rights.”

Raising the possibility of suspending military aid to a client government is an unusual step for a senior senator to take, and it is practically unheard of for a leading member of Congress to suggest this option for Israel. It is a measure of how egregious the crime is and how frustrated many lawmakers are with Israeli stonewalling and administration inaction. It remains to be seen if others will support using military aid as leverage to obtain Israeli cooperation, but the fact that it has even been suggested is significant.

The killing and the Biden administration’s dilatory reaction to it call attention to several serious flaws in the America-Israel relationship: it is one-sided and overly indulgent; it enables abuses; and it strengthens a culture of impunity. In this case, there has been an excessive deference to the Israeli government’s claims and an unwillingness to apply pressure to get to the bottom of the matter. The administration has given the Israeli government the benefit of the doubt at every turn and accepted their explanations at face value. When confronted with a fatal attack on an American citizen by an armed agent of a foreign government, the administration has dodged its responsibility to seek justice for the victim and it has abandoned its obligations to stand up for a slain journalist.

Biden’s team refuses to apply the same standard to Israel that it would apply to virtually any other foreign government in the same situation. The Israeli government is held to a different, lower standard that ensures that there will be no rebukes or repercussions from Washington. Because America provides substantial aid to the Israeli government, our government is implicated in crimes and abuses committed by their forces, and that in turn creates an incentive for our government to help sweep those abuses under the rug — even when they are committed against Americans.

In almost any other part of the world, the America would likely respond to a crime like this against an American citizen with public condemnation and the imposition of sanctions on the individuals responsible for it. The State Department would “name and shame” the people responsible for the crime, and the president would demand that the other government cooperate fully with American investigators. Members of Congress would be tripping over one another demanding the extradition of the guilty party.

In this case, however, we see the State Department running interference for the government engaged in the coverup, and most of Washington seems content to forget all about it. It is unacceptable for our government to remain so passive in the face of a gross injustice committed against one of our citizens.

There must be serious consequences for the murder of Shireen Abu Akleh. Those consequences ought to include downgrading the relationship with Israel and reducing the extent of American support for the Israeli military. Failing to impose costs in this case will signal to the world that our government views the killing of one of its citizens with indifference, and that could put American citizens in many client states at greater risk.

At the very least, America should demand that the guilty party be identified and charged, tried and executed. If the Israeli government won’t do that, America should suspend military aid. If the Biden administration will not act on its own, Congress and the public must shame them into acting. He should also be charged with being an accessory after the fact and punished accordingly.

NEW ZEALAND’S PM WANTS MORE CENSORSHIP TO SUPPORT AMERICA’S PROXY WAR IN UKRAINE

She Argues That Russia’s War Is “Based On A Lie” To Justify Censorship Of Online Speech Which Supports The Idea That Russia Is Fighting For Legitimate Reasons In Ukraine.

New Zealand’s prime minister Jacinda Ardern continued her crusade for the expansion of internet censorship during a speech at the United Nations General Assembly, this time using the war in Ukraine.

Whether it’s climate, trade, health crises or seeking peaceful solutions to war and conflict, New Zealand has always been a believer in multilateral tools,” Ardern told the assembly, adding that “without reform, we risk irrelevancy.”

There is perhaps no greater example of this than Russia’s invasion of Ukraine,” Ardern said. “Let us all be clear: Russia’s war is illegal. It is immoral. It is a direct attack on the UN charter, and the international rules-based system and everything that this community should stand for. Putin’s suggestion that it could at any point deploy further weapons that it has at their disposal reveals the false narrative that they have based their invasion on. What country who claims to be a liberator, threatens to annihilate the very civilians they claim to liberate? This war is based on a lie.”

Later in her speech, Ardern returns to the theme that Russia’s war is “based on a lie” to argue for the censorship of online speech which supports the idea that Russia is fighting for legitimate reasons in Ukraine.

Using the 2019 Christchurch terrorist attack as a segue to talk about the perils of online radicalization, Ardern then smoothly transitions to the subject of “mis- and disinformation” on the internet.

This will also be important in understanding more about mis- and disinformation online: a challenge that we must as leaders address,” Ardern said.

As leaders, we are rightly concerned that even those most light-touch approaches to disinformation could be misinterpreted as being hostile to the values of free speech we value so highly,” Ardern added, an acknowledgement of the grave human rights concerns inherent in having ‘leaders’ participate in the regulation of public speech. “But while I cannot tell you today what the answer is to this challenge, I can say with complete certainty that we cannot ignore it. To do so poses an equal threat to the norms we all value.”

Then it gets even creepier.

After all, how do you successfully end a war if people are led to believe the reason for its existence is not only legal but noble?” asks the prime minister. “How do you tackle climate change if people do not believe it exists? How do you ensure the human rights of others are upheld, when they are subjected to hateful and dangerous rhetoric and ideology? The weapons may be different, but the goals of those who perpetuate them is often the same. To cause chaos and reduce the ability of others to defend themselves. To disband communities. To collapse the collective strength of countries who work together. But we have an opportunity here to ensure that these particular weapons of war do not become an established part of warfare.”

Ardern’s remarks are currently getting a lot of criticism in right-wing circles due largely to her suggestion that online discourse about climate change needs to be regulated so that the issue can be properly addressed. And to be sure that is an absolutely insane thing for her to say. This is a line of thinking that can only arise from a profoundly tyrannical mind.

But what isn’t getting enough attention at this time is the fact that Ardern is calling for an increase in the already outrageous amount of online censorship we are seeing with regard to the war in Ukraine. She explicitly said the war is “based on a lie”, and then went on to argue that people need to be stopped from circulating speech which lends credibility to that lie, even if such freakishly authoritarian measures may be “misinterpreted” as being hostile to free speech.

Ardern argues that online speech claiming that the Russian invasion of Ukraine is legal and noble makes it harder to attain peace, but of course she doesn’t really believe that, and neither does anyone else. The idea that free speech about the war could somehow hamper peace negotiations between governments is self-evidently absurd and completely nonsensical.

In reality, this war is just the latest in a string of excuses we’ve been given by the western political/media class to censor the internet, with earlier justifications including Covid-19, election security, domestic extremism, and Russian propaganda again after the 2016 American election. But asserting that it’s important to stop people from thinking wrong thoughts about a war is a major escalation from all those other justifications, because they’re no longer pretending that it’s being done for our own good. Our wrongthink is the justification, in and of itself.

Which is a problem, because this is in fact an extremely dangerous proxy war being waged against Russia by America and its imperial member states. It was absolutely deliberately provoked, it’s showing no sign of ending anytime soon, and its continual escalation threatens the life of everyone on this planet. The American regime has lied about every war it has ever been involved in, and if ever there was a war to bring scrutiny and skepticism to, it’s the one that is bringing us closer to a nuclear exchange than at any other time in history.

This notion that it is the job of “leaders” to involve themselves in regulating the ideas and information we’re allowed to share with each other online needs to be stomped out, dissolved in acid, and flushed down the toilet. That’s not their place. They shouldn’t even be looking in that direction, much less talking amongst themselves at the United Nations about how best they can go about doing it. It’s a profoundly dangerous notion that needs to be rejected with unadulterated aggression.

Free speech is not a “weapon of war”. It’s free speech. Either let us have it or the authoritarians need to stop pretending they value it.

THE ILLUSION OF THE RETURN OF THE TWO STATE SOLUTION

The False Promise Of A Two-State Solution Is Key To The Myth That One Can Reconcile A “Jewish And Democratic” Apartheid State With Liberal Values Since Israel Has No Values At All.

For Democrats in the United States and the political “centrists” in Israel—represented by Joe Biden and Yair Lapid, respectively—the loss of credibility for the two-state solution has meant losing more and more support for Israeli policies. As the respected polling site 538.com noted recently, among many other sources, younger Democrats are increasingly supportive of Palestinians and less so of Israeli policies.

These facts explain the theater we have witnessed in recent days at the United Nations General Assembly and in the American media scene, where the lone Palestinian woman ever elected to Congress has come under unrelenting attack from her own party as well as the opposition.

At the annual meeting of the UN General Assembly, Biden devoted one brief mention to the question of Palestine, but what he did say was telling. “And we will continue to advocate for lasting negotiating peace between the Jewish and democratic state of Israel and the Palestinian people,” Biden told the Assembly. “The United States is committed to Israel’s security, full stop. And a negotiated two-state solution remains, in our view, the best way to ensure Israel’s security and prosperity for the future and give the Palestinians the state which — to which they are entitled — both sides to fully respect the equal rights of their citizens; both people enjoying equal measure of freedom and dignity.”

While stumbling over his words, and certainly unintentionally, Biden said the quiet part out loud. America will advocate for lasting negotiations, the hallmark of the Oslo process; endless negotiations that lead nowhere while Israeli settlements spread farther across the West Bank, Gaza slowly dies of poverty, and the status quo in East Jerusalem gradually fades into Jewish dominance. And above all, Israeli “security” is guarded “full stop,” and if there is any room left for any Palestinian rights, those will be considered according to Israel’s wishes.

Acting Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid spoke at more length about a two-state solution, but said little more. Spending most of his time urging the world to abandon diplomacy with Iran and instead launch a war, presumably to change the regime there, Lapid stated that “An agreement with the Palestinians, based on two states for two peoples, is the right thing for Israel’s security, for Israel’s economy and for the future of our children.”

Lapid’s speech was littered with falsehoods. He went on at length about how Israel is victimized by “fake news,” citing an incident in May 2021 where a photo of a toddler who was said to have been killed in an Israeli strike on Gaza circulated on social media. The post was a fake and was quickly debunked. But Lapid failed to mention that, while the toddler, referred to as Malak Al Tanani, was, indeed, made up, there was an entire family of Tananis–Ra’fat Tanani, 38, his pregnant wife Rawiye, 35, and their children Ismail, 6, Ameer, 5, Adham, 4, and Mohammad, 3—who were killed in an Israeli strike on May 13, 2021. A fact-check by the Agence France-Presse confirmed both the fake photo and the real family. B’Tselem also posted a video in May 2022 interviewing a relative of the Tanani family that was killed.

Having established, through misleading statements and outright dissembling, Israel as a “victim,” Lapid then made sure to let the assembly know that, while he was coming out in support of more talks, and the idea of a two-state solution, Israel would do nothing to make that solution, or any other, a real possibility.

The burden of proof is not on us. We have already proved our desire for peace. Our peace treaty with Egypt has been fully implemented for 43 years now. Our peace treaty with Jordan for 28 years. We are a country that keeps its word and fulfills agreements,” Lapid said

Aside from the fact that Lapid omits the crucial point that these peace agreements have been enforced by billions of dollars of American aid to Israel, Egypt, and Jordan, Lapid elides the many times Israel has refused to agree to various conditions or interim deals, or has made demands on Palestinians it knew they could not accept.

The absence of a single word about what Israel or the United States would do to achieve freedom for Palestinians or to advance any solution, two state or otherwise, to the ongoing conditions of apartheid and dispossession is unsurprising if one considers that the goal was not to appease the Palestinians, but to address domestic constituencies.

Lapid surely knows he was lying when he said that “Despite all the obstacles, still today a large majority of Israelis support the vision of this two-state solution.” In fact, a recent poll by the Israel Democracy Institute found that only 31% of Israeli Jews and only 60% of Palestinian and other Arab citizens of Israel support the two-state solution.

But his own constituency in the Yesh Atid party supports such negotiations. More importantly, he wants to make sure he has the loyalty of the small Labor and Meretz parties, both of which support the two-state solution, against his center-right rival, Benny Gantz. Right now, all the polls show that neither Lapid nor Gantz will come close to being able to assemble the coalition of 61 seats needed to win the upcoming election, while their far-right competitor, Benjamin Netanyahu, has better, although also far from certain, prospects of reaching that mark.

Lapid also hopes to bolster his chances by demonstrating his compatibility with Biden and the Democrats, and they are more than willing to oblige. Targeting Rep. Rashida Tlaib plays a key role in both bolstering Lapid as a bulwark against Netanyahu—whom Democrats would not want to see back in office, given his very close ties to the Republican Party—and in trying to smother the growing support for Palestine within the party.

According to a poll conducted by Pew Research back in March, 61% of Americans between 18 and 29 years of age have a favorable opinion of Palestinians. Among those aged 30-49 it is 55%, and even among older voters, 45-47% have a favorable opinion of Palestinians. While many of these people also hold positive views of Israel, American sympathy for Palestinians has grown immensely over the past two decades, when only 16% of voters viewed Palestinians positively.

This sits poorly with mainstream Democrats and their corporate, and especially, pro-Israel funders. So, when Tlaib made a self-evident and fact-based statement, Democrats joined Republicans in piling on her and branding her an antisemite.

Tlaib, of course, stated that you cannot be progressive and support Israel’s apartheid government. The response was as vicious as it was disingenuous, with the usual anti-Palestinian hatemongers like Jonathan Greenblatt of the ADL, AIPAC, the American Jewish Committee, and a long list of Democratic members of Congress stumbling over each other to see who could come up with the most scurrilous and spurious accusations against Tlaib, who did no more than point out what so many international, Palestinian, and even Israeli human rights groups have proven.

It’s no coincidence that these attacks came at the same time as the UNGA speeches. Tlaib was very careful to point her finger only at the Israeli government and its policies; at no time did she ever hint at the question of Israel’s existence nor of the presence of Jews in the land. Indeed, even the avowedly Zionist group Americans for Peace Now rose to Tlaib’s defense, splitting with J Street, which shamefully supported the attacks on Tlaib.

The two-state solution and the myth that you can support apartheid and still be true to progressive values go hand in hand. Consider the words Rep. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz used in her hateful rant against Tlaib. “The outrageous progressive litmus test on Israel by Rashida Tlaib is nothing short of antisemitic. Proud progressives do support Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish and democratic state.”

Rep. Jerry Nadler elaborated further. “I fundamentally reject the notion that one cannot support Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish and democratic state and be a progressive. I proudly embrace both of these political positions and identities, even as I have criticized some of the policies and actions of democratically-elected Israeli governments over time. I would happily put my progressive record and credentials up against anyone’s. It is both wrong and self-defeating for progressive leaders to abide such an offensive litmus tests.”

The legitimacy of many of the Congress members claiming the “progressive” label is clearly questionable, but Wasserman-Schultz, joined by other Democrats, calling Tlaib antisemitic for expressing support for a view that Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, the United Nations, al-Haq, and B’Tselem have all expressed and backed up with extensive research is cynically perverse, whether you think Tlaib is right or wrong.

Both she and Nadler call Tlaib’s statement a “litmus test,” as if the question is not whether Israel practices apartheid, but whether supporting it anyway is acceptable within the bounds of anything that can be labeled “progressive politics.”

Nadler also talks about his occasional criticism of “Israeli policies,” as did many of the Democrats who ganged up on Tlaib. How must those words look to a Palestinian in Gaza or Masafer Yatta, or to a Palestinian-American who might be a constituent of one of these Democrats who express such passionate solidarity with Israelis and such stony indifference, if not outright hostility, to Palestinians?

For years, the idea of a two-state solution in Palestine and Israel has been exposed as a pipe dream. However viable it may once have been, more and more people have come to realize in recent years that it simply isn’t a realistic option anymore.

Some years ago, a well-informed colleague observed that the two-state solution is never impossible, but the costs—fiscally, politically, diplomatically—just keep getting higher. He was right, of course. It is never physically impossible to dismantle Israel’s settlements, sever the existing infrastructure in the West Bank from Israel, work out realistic borders, open Gaza, and pour the many billions of dollars into Palestine that would be required after seven decades and counting of occupation to build a truly viable state.

It’s all possible, but the cost would be enormous, and the price—allowing the option of refugees returning to their homes, allowing Palestine the means to defend itself like any other country, compensating Palestinians for their dispossession and suffering, all on top of reining in the most radical of the nationalist settlers, resettling the hundreds of thousands of Israelis in the West Bank, shifting borders to accommodate a connection between Gaza and West Bank, sharing water resources equitably, and a hundred other details—is far higher than anything Israel would consider in its wildest dreams.

But that doesn’t mean the two-state solution isn’t seen as crucial for Israel and the United States. Its implementation may be undesirable for Israel, but the idea of it serves a crucial purpose: it is the very lifeblood of the myth that one can support a “Jewish and democratic” apartheid state and reconcile that with liberal or progressive values. That allows them to characterize their “disagreements” with Israel as being about specific policies, not an apartheid system at the very heart of Israel’s character.

Apartheid is not a policy; it is an institution. It is a political and legal system. It is a crime under international law. It is not merely one decision to demolish a home, to detain a Palestinian without charge, to beat an elderly man at the al-Aqsa Compound, or to launch one missile at a Gaza apartment building.

That system is not just incompatible with progressive values, it’s incompatible even with classical Liberalism. To maintain the self-deception many Democratic supporters of Israel, in and out of politics, need for their consciences, they need to believe that there is a genuine striving for a Palestinian state that can deliver rights to those living under Israeli rule right now.

But it’s an illusion. Israel has been disrupting the possibility of it from the beginnings of Oslo through today, with massive settlement expansion, the isolation and starvation of Gaza, and the gradual erosion of the long-standing agreements on the holy sites in Jerusalem.

Joe Biden and congressional Democrats are desperately trying to save this phony duality, this illusion that you can support an Israeli ethno-state that, by definition, cannot be a state of all its citizens and must, by its nature discriminate against Palestinians and still call yourself a progressive without irony.

No one would suggest you can be progressive but be against a woman’s right to decide about what to do with her own body. Nor can you be progressive and oppose LGBTQIA rights. Nor can you support racial discrimination, or autocracy.

Similarly, no matter how loudly you insist otherwise, you cannot be progressive and be in support of an apartheid regime. The illusion of a two-state solution that hasn’t been a viable possibility for many years doesn’t change that. It only reinforces one discriminatory illusion with another.

SUPPRESSION OF THOSE ALTERNATIVE VOICES

We Once Believed That Our Freedom Of Speech And Of The Press Are Two Of The Ways America Differed From More Dictatorial Nations Such As Germany Under The Nazis And The Former Soviet Union.

In the US, we proudly point to the First Amendment in the Bill of Rights that was adopted in 1791:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”

We believe that our freedom of speech and of the press are two of the ways America differs from more dictatorial nations such as Germany under the Nazis and the former Soviet Union.

Unfortunately, these freedoms are not as absolute as they sound. As Howard Zinn pointed out in an excellent piece that should be read by all, we cannot rely on this amendment to protect our freedoms of speech or press. For example, just seven years after the Bill of Rights was adopted, the John Adams administration thought that war with France was a strong possibility. Congress then passed the Alien and Sedition Acts that explicitly abridged these freedoms. The Sedition Act made it a crime for American citizens to “print, utter, or publish…any false, scandalous, and malicious writing” about the government. Fortunately, the Sedition Act expired in 1801.

Shortly after America entered WWI, Congress passed the Espionage Act of 1917. This Act was similar but broader than the Alien and Sedition Acts of 1798. Further, the Wilson administration determined that any written materials violating the act or otherwise “urging treason” were also “nonmailable matter.”

The Wilson administration particularly targeted: 1) the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), the union that was the most radical, antiwar, and uncompromising in standing up for workers’ rights; and 2) the strongly antiwar, pro-human rights campaigner and then four-time Presidential candidate Eugene Debs and the Socialist Party. By 1918, in actions that seriously threatened First Amendment freedoms, the Post Office denied mailing privileges for 74 newspapers, including the IWW’s newspapers and those of the Socialist Party.

There is much more that could be said about the attacks on the freedom of speech and of the press. However, it is also important to consider the ability to have your speech amplified. As Zinn pointed out: “In other words, freedom of speech is not simply a yes or no question. It is also a “how much” question. And how much freedom we have depends on how much money we have, what power we have, and what resources we have for reaching large numbers of people.” Zinn also quoted the writer A.J. Liebling who said: “The person who has freedom of the press is the person who owns one.”

Over the years, vitally important restrictions on the ownership of the news media have been greatly weakened, leading to a consolidation of the mainstream news media under the control of giant corporations, hedge funds and wealthy individuals. Unsurprisingly, their interests do not necessarily align with the best interests of the nation or of the great majority of the population.

For example, the mainstream news media coverage reflects a strong bias against: Medicare for All, an increase in taxes on the wealthy, limits on corporate mergers, controlling the price of prescription drugs, unions, and ending war.

During the Cold War, there was a very apt anecdote about Pravda and the New York Times. It stated the difference between Pravda and the New York Times is that Pravda readers knew they were being lied to. Disappointingly, even now many people in America still don’t get this anecdote. In addition, the mainstream media suppresses news stories that don’t fit their narrative.

One story that the mainstream media has strongly suppressed is the December 5, 2017 testimony before the House Intelligence Committee from Shawn Henry. Henry was President of the cyber-security firm CrowdStrike, the company that accused Russia of hacking the Democratic Party’s emails in 2016. In response to a question from Representative Adam Schiff, one of the most vocal Russiagate supporters, Henry, who was now under oath, said he had no concrete evidence of a hack. Schiff was able to keep this admission undercutting the Russian hack idea from being released until May 7, 2020. Even then, this vitally important story was suppressed by most of the mainstream media. Perhaps those reporters in the media who helped to spread the Russian hack story were afraid the Henry testimony would clearly demonstrate that they failed to check the accuracy of the claims they had reported for months.

In foreign policy, the mainstream media strongly supports the government through spreading its propaganda. By now it’s not debatable that George W. Bush administration lied about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. However, mainstream media (with a few honorable exceptions) abrogated its responsibility to the public by not challenging the lies. Even worse, the media spread those lies to the American public and the world. MSNBC had one program, its highest rated program, hosted by Phil Donahue that challenged the Bush administration’s claims. However, MSNBC canceled the program about one month before America illegally attacked Iraq.

Before the American war crime in Iraq, there was the American war crime against Vietnam. After WWII, the Truman administration thwarted the Vietnamese independence effort by returning control of Vietnam to France, Vietnam’s former colonial master. The independent Vietnamese movement rejected this betrayal and eventually defeated the French despite strong American support for the French forces. The terms for ending the struggle called for a free election in 1956. However, the Eisenhower administration acted against democracy by setting up a puppet government in South Vietnam and preventing the election. Would America have attacked Vietnam if the American media had informed the American public of this shameful history?

There are numerous other horrific examples of American crimes unknown to the public, e.g., see William Blum’s masterful Killing Hope: U.S. Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II. Julian Assange is one of several courageous whistleblowers who followed in the footsteps of Daniel Ellsberg (The Pentagon Papers) and have laid bare more of America’s criminal behavior. America’s relentless and despicable persecution of Assange is major risk to the freedom of the press. Foolishly, the American press has not strongly pushed back against this present threat to press freedom.

The Biden administration and the complicit media’s current propaganda campaign is about the Russian war with Ukraine and NATO. America claims that the Russian attack was unprovoked. The mainstream media mostly ignores voices challenging this blatantly false claim. Other media sources challenging the claim such as RT (formerly Russia Today) are also taken off the air. Would the American public be so supportive of this highly dangerous war with Russia if the mainstream media had provided the context, including the long history of American provocations? So much for the American media accurately informing the public. It is simply an propaganda ministry who indoctrinates the public using false information.

AMERICANS SUPPORT A QUICK DIPLOMATIC END TO THE WAR IN UKRAINE

A Poll Reveals Most Voters Also Said They Want Washington To Actively Engage In Diplomacy As A Condition For Sending Military Aid.

Nearly 60 percent of Americans would support the United States engaging in diplomatic efforts “as soon as possible” to end the war in Ukraine, even if that means Ukraine having to make concessions to Russia, according to a new poll.

The survey, conducted by Data for Progress on behalf of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, also found that a plurality (49 percent) said the Biden administration and Congress have not done enough diplomatically to help end the war (37 percent said they had).

The poll’s release comes after Vladimir Putin doubled down on Russia’s war in Ukraine by mobilizing reserves and issuing threats to use nuclear weapons after recent gains by the Ukrainian military near the country’s eastern border with Russia.

Moscow has also recently orchestrated referendums in some Russian-controlled areas of Ukraine on whether citizens there want to secede and become part of the Russian Federation, some so called “experts” to believe that regardless of the outcome, Putin plans to illegally annex parts of Ukraine.

The survey also found that 47 percent said they support the continuation of American military aid to Ukraine only if Washington is involved in ongoing diplomacy to end the war, while 41 percent said they would support aid regardless of whether the United States is engaged in negotiations.

Just six percent said Russia’s war in Ukraine is among the top three most important issues facing the United States today, with the top three being inflation (46 percent), jobs and the economy (31 percent), and gun violence (26 percent).

But, of course, you do not hear about those things as important stories in the mainstream media (a.k.a. Propaganda ministry.)

THE CIA IS NOT YOUR FRIEND

The CIA’s Murders Have Continued In Across A Series Of American Administrations. They Killed An American, And Then Killed His 16 Year-Old American Son A Few Weeks Later, And Then His 8 Year Old Daughter.

Our glittering nation of laws observes this year two birthdays: the 70th anniversary of the National Security Agency, and the 75th anniversary of the Central Intelligence Agency.

The CIA was founded in the wake of the 1947 National Security Act. The Act foresaw no need for the Courts and Congress to oversee a simple information-aggregation facility, and therefore subordinated it exclusively to the President, through the National Security Council he controls.

Within a year, the young agency had already slipped the leash of its intended role of intelligence collection and analysis to establish a covert operations division. Within a decade, the CIA was directing the coverage of American news organizations, overthrowing democratically elected governments (at times merely to benefit a favored corporation), establishing propaganda outfits to manipulate public sentiment, launching a long-running series of mind-control experiments on unwitting human subjects (purportedly contributing to the creation of the Unabomber), and—gasp—interfering with foreign elections. From there, it was a short hop to wiretapping journalists and compiling files on Americans who opposed its wars.

In 1963, no less than former President Harry Truman confessed that the very agency he personally signed into law had transformed into something altogether different than he intended, writing:

For some time I have been disturbed by the way CIA has been diverted from its original assignment. It has become an operational and at times a policy-making arm of the Government. This has led to trouble…”

Many today comfort themselves by imagining that the Agency has been reformed, and that such abuses are relics of the distant past, but what few reforms our democracy has won have been watered-down or compromised. The limited “Intelligence Oversight” role that was eventually conceded to Congress in order to placate the public has never been taken seriously by either the committee’s majority—which prefers cheerleading over investigating—or by the Agency itself, which continues to conceal politically-sensitive operations from the very group most likely to defend them.

“Congress should have been told,” said [Senator] Dianne Feinstein. “We should have been briefed before the commencement of this kind of sensitive program. Director Panetta… was told that the vice president had ordered that the program not be briefed to Congress.”

How can we judge the ultimate effectiveness of oversight and reforms? Well, the CIA plotted to assassinate American whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg, in 1972, yet nearly fifty years of “reforms” did little to inhibit them from recently sketching out another political murder targeting Julian Assange. Putting that in perspective, you probably own shoes older than the CIA’s most recent plot to murder a dissident… or rather the most recent plot that we know of.

If you believe the Assange case to be a historical anomaly, some aberration unique to Trump White House, recall that the CIA’s killings have continued in series across administrations. Obama ordered the killing of an American far from any battlefield, and killed his 16 year-old American son a few weeks later, but the man’s American daughter was still alive by the time Obama left.

Within a month of entering the White House, Trump killed her.

She was 8 years old.

It goes beyond assassinations. Within recent memory, the CIA captured Gul Rahman, who we know was not Al-Qaeda, but it seems did save the life of Afghanistan’s future (pro-US) President. Rahman was placed in what the Agency described as a “dungeon” and tortured until he died.

They stripped him naked, save a diaper he couldn’t change, in a cold so wicked that his guards, in their warm clothes, ran heaters for themselves. In absolute darkness, they bolted his hands and feet to a single point on the floor with a very short chain so that it was impossible to stand or lie down – a practice called “short shackling” – and after he died, claimed that it was for his own safety. They admit to beating him, even describing the “forceful punches.” They describe the blood that ran from his nose and mouth as he died.

Pages later, in their formal conclusion, the Agency declares that there was no evidence of beating. There was no of evidence torture. The CIA ascribes responsibility for his death to hypothermia, which they blamed on him for the crime of refusing, on his final night, a meal from the men that killed him.

The CIA claimed the complaints of a man they tortured to death — regarding the violation of his human rights — were evidence of a “sophisticated level of resistance training.”

In the aftermath, the Agency concealed the death of Gul Rahman from his family. To this day, they refuse to reveal what happened to his remains, denying those who survive him a burial, or even some locus of mourning.

Ten years after the torture program investigated, exposed, and ended, no one was charged for their role in these crimes. The man responsible for Rahman’s death was recommended for a $2,500 cash award — for “consistently superior work”.

A different torturer was elevated to the Director’s seat.

This summer, in a speech marking the occasion of the CIA’s 75th birthday, President Biden struck a quite different note than he did in Philadelphia, reciting what the CIA instructs all presidents: that the soul of the institution really lies in speaking truth to power.

We turn to you with the big questions,” Biden said, “the hardest questions. And we count on you to give your best, unvarnished assessment of where we are. And I emphasize ‘unvarnished.’”

But this itself is a variety of varnishing — a whitewash.

For what reason do we aspire to maintain — or achieve — a nation of laws, if not to establish justice?

Let us say we have a democracy, shining and pure. The people, or in our case some subset of people, institute reasonable laws to which government and citizen alike must answer. The sense of justice that arises within such a society is not produced as a result of the mere presence of law, which can be tyrannical and capricious, or even elections, which face their own troubles, but is rather derived from the reason and fairness of the system that results.

What would happen if we were to insert into this beautiful nation of laws an extralegal entity that is not directed by the people, but a person: the President? Have we protected the nation’s security, or have we placed it at risk?

This is the unvarnished truth: the establishment of an institution charged with breaking the law within a nation of laws has mortally wounded its founding precept.

From the year it was established, Presidents and their cadres have regularly directed the CIA to go beyond the law for reasons that cannot be justified, and therefore must be concealed — classified. The primary result of the classification system is not an increase in national security, but a decrease in transparency. Without meaningful transparency, there is no accountability, and without accountability, there is no learning.

The consequences have been deadly, for both Americans and our victims. When the CIA armed the Mujaheddin to wage war on Soviet Afghanistan, we created al-Qaeda’s Osama bin Laden. Ten years later, the CIA is arming, according to then-Vice President Joe Biden, “al-Nusra, and Al-Qaeda and the extremist elements of jihadis coming from other parts of the world.” After the CIA runs a disinformation operation to make life hard for the Soviet Union by fueling a little proxy war, the war rages for twenty-six years — far beyond the Union’s collapse.

Do you believe that the CIA today — a CIA free from all consequence and accountability — is uninvolved in similar activities? Can you find no presence of their fingerprints in the events of the world, as described in the headlines, that provide cause for concern? Yet it is those who question the wisdom of placing a paramilitary organization beyond the reach of our courts that are dismissed as “naive.”

For 75 years, the American people have been unable to bend the CIA to fit the law, and so the law has been bent to fit the CIA. As Biden stood on the crimson stage, at the site where the Declaration of Independence and Constitution were debated and adopted, his words rang out like the cry of a cracked-to-hell Liberty Bell: “What’s happening in our country is not normal.”

If only that were true.

FASCISM RETURNS TO THE CENTER STAGE IN EUROPE

The Victory Of A Far-Right Coalition In Italy’s Parliamentary Election May Mean The Country’s Next Prime Minister, Will Have Views Similar To Former Members Of Benito Mussolini’s Fascist Dictatorship.

The stunning victory of a far-right coalition in Italy’s parliamentary election on Sunday is largely seen from the distinct prospect of Giorgia Meloni becoming the country’s next prime minister, whose hardline views on immigration and the preservation of the “Christian family” are rooted in the Italian Social Movement (MSI), a party founded after World War II by the nostalgic former members of Benito Mussolini’s fascist dictatorship.

Meloni insists that she isn’t a fascist herself, yet her party’s flag includes the symbol of the old pro-Fascist party— the tricolor flame. Two of Mussolini’s descendants, his granddaughter Rachele and his great-grandson Caio Giulio Cesare, have run under the banner of the party Meloni leads, Brothers of Italy. Meloni insists she isn’t a fascist herself, but her take on Mussolini is: “Everything he did, he did for Italy.”

All this makes the meteoric rise of this politician with a working class background a combustible mix at a juncture when the future of European politics itself seems dark and uncertain, reeling under the economic crisis.

Without doubt, Leon Trotsky’s critique of fascism is the best in the Marxist literature in the 1930s on the subject. Trotsky was the first Marxist theorist to get to the core of the destructive delirium that surrounds fascist phenomenon. Trotsky’s famous passage on the rise of fascism helps understand what is happening.

Trotsky wrote: “The fascist movement in Italy was a spontaneous movement of large masses, with new leaders from the rank and file. It is a plebian movement in origin, directed and financed by big capitalist powers. It issued forth from the petty bourgeoisie, the slum proletariat, and even to a certain extent from the proletarian masses; Mussolini, a former socialist, is a “self-made” man arising from this movement.”

The three pillars of Meloni’s politics are zero-tolerance for illegal immigration, extreme social conservatism and, until recently, belligerent Euro-scepticism. Guardian newspaper wrote: “From Italy to Sweden, Hungary to France, the far right is once again a force to be reckoned with. Its hostility towards immigrants encourages xenophobes everywhere, including in India.”

In European politics, Italy traditionally played the role of an eager junior partner to the heavyweights that drive decision-making, France and Germany. That is almost certain to change under Meloni. The “known unknown” is as to which route she goes down — a populist such as Hungary’s Viktor Orban, intent on exerting ever more control; a pugilist such as Poland’s Mateusz Morawiecki; or, a more familiar conservative voice such as Liz Truss? Or, even something entirely different?

Any whichever way she goes, it matters like hell, because Italy is one of the world’s most wealthy and influential nations — a G7 member and the third biggest economy in the European Union (EU), and a NATO power. That is why the outcome of Sunday’s vote was watched nervously in European capitals and on financial markets. Simply put, the Brothers of Italy, does not inspire confidence that Rome will reclaim its role as a steady European partner — although the manifesto of the incoming centre-right coalition sought to reassure EU neighbours and NATO partners.

Indeed, Meloni may have to temper — initially, at least — as Italy is the largest beneficiary of NextGenerationEU funds and its economic difficulties are best handled with the EU’s helping hand. That said, there is an important distinction to be made when Maloni’s coalition speaks of “national interest.” Traditionally, Italian leaders pursued national interest by being friends with countries with similar values and interests. Thus, pro-Europeanism and Atlanticism became unquestioned tenets of Italian policy.

But when Meloni uses the term “national interest”, it has an altogether different connotation linked to the fascist idea of an ethnic concept of nationhood, of glorifying the Roman Empire — somewhat similar to what is happening in India or Turkey today.

It will come as no surprise if Meloni puts the European Commission bureaucrats in their place and clips the EU’s wings. She candidly said recently, “What will happen is that the gravy train will come to an end.” It is not only that she thinks Brussels is useless, but is also hostile. Citing the EU’s attempts to punish Poland and Hungary for democratic backsliding, she said, “We are facing the most powerful and violent attack against governments of sovereign nations opposing the dictatorship of politically correct ideology.”

Significantly, Meloni is not alone on this path. Apart from closeness to Hungary’s nationalist leader Viktor Orban, she also happens to be the president of the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR), a pan-European umbrella party that includes Poland’s ruling Law and Justice party as well as increasingly influential parties in countries like Spain and Sweden. Meloni may have the means to tip the balance in the European Parliament in 2024 and influence the allocation of top jobs, including whether to give European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen another term.

Suffice to say, Italy may not anymore be a docile camp follower of France and Germany, but Meloni may have a gang of her own with conservative, authoritarian figures. It will almost certainly mean the weakening of ties with the likes of Presidents Joe Biden and Emmanuel Macron. Meloni’s approach to America veers toward the Trumpian right

The million dollar question is where the new Italian government is going stand on the Ukraine question. Brothers of Italy has been critics of Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine. But its coalition partner the Lega party retains strong links to Moscow, and Meloni will heavily rely on its support. Lega’s leader Matteo Salvini has called for a rethink of EU sanctions against Russia. Salvini draws his voter support heavily from business owners, who have expressed fears that Italy’s economy could be too heavily hit by repercussions from Western sanctions against Russia.

Besides, Meloni will also have to reckon with another of her coalition partners, former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi, who is still the showman of Italian politics and a close friend of President Putin. Berlusconi’s support to the right-wing coalition is indispensable to ensure it has a majority of seats, and as such the controversial ex-premier could still exert significant influence. Meloni’s party has no experience in government, so she will need full support from Berlusconi and Salvini. Suffice to say, in this new matrix, at the very least, Italy’s support for Ukraine could weaken.

What often goes unnoticed is that Moscow has historically had extensive personal relationships with Italian politicians. It goes back to the 1960s when Italy was home to the largest communist party in Europe. Like in Germany, governments of all stripes in Rome continued to promote economic and energy ties with Russia. From such a perspective, the shift in Italian politics is tectonic, coinciding with the transformation of the war in Ukraine from a slow burning grind to a full-fledged war. It comes amidst stirrings that the EU itself may be going through a profound rethink, as foreign policy chief Josep Borrell’s latest remarks with accent on “diplomatic efforts” would suggest.

Italian elections in the past have often triggered similar trends elsewhere in Europe. Mussolini’s rise in 1920s came ahead of the Nazis in Germany. In a dramatic shift, right-wing nationalists just won in Sweden. The risk to Europe may well not be Giorgia Meloni herself, but how her influence spreads. As a veteran German commentator put it, this is also where “the biggest danger lies — That the EU tries to push her around or isolate her, and that she will resist, with the Italian electorate on her side.”

HERE IS ANOTHER LINE OF BS FROM THE NEW YORK TIMES

The New York Times, Which Consistently Supports Every American War, Has Published An Op-Ed By A Neoconservative Think Tanker Titled “Biden’s Cautious Foreign Policy Imperils Us”.

This would be Joseph Biden, the president of the United States who has been consistently vowing to go to war with the People’s Republic of China if it attacks Taiwan, and whose administration has been pouring billions of dollars into a world-threatening proxy war in Ukraine which it knowingly provoked and from which it has no exit strategy. With this administration’s acceleration toward global conflict on two different fronts, one could easily argue that Biden actually has the least cautious foreign policy of any president in history.

In the aftermath of Vladimir Putin’s recent nuclear threat and call-up of reservists, it was reassuring for the leader of the free world to be unflinching,” writes the article’s author Kori Schake, who then adds, “Rhetoric aside, the administration has signaled in numerous other ways that Putin’s threats have constrained support for Ukraine.”

As though the possibility of nuclear war should not constrain American proxy warfare in that country. As though the crazy thing is not the American government’s insane nuclear brinkmanship with Russia, but its reluctance to go further.

Schake criticizes the fact that while Biden has been saying a PRC attack on Taiwan would mean a direct American hot war with China, the American military would need far more funding and far greater expansion to be able to win such a war, so it should definitely do those things instead of simply not rushing into World War Three.

But worse are the real gaps in capability that call into question whether the United States could indeed defend Taiwan,” Schake writes. “The ships, troop numbers, planes and missile defenses in the Pacific are a poor match for China’s capability. The director of national intelligence, Avril Haines, has assessed that the threat to Taiwan between now and 2030 is ‘acute,’ yet the defense budget is not geared to providing improved capabilities until the mid-2030s. More broadly, the Biden administration isn’t funding an American military that can adequately carry out our defense commitments, a dangerous posture for a great power. The Democratic-led Congress added $29 billion last year and $45 billion this year to the Department of Defense budget request, a measure of just how inadequate the Biden budget is.”

As Shchake discusses the urgent need to explode the military budget in order to defend Taiwan, The New York Times neglects to inform us that Schake’s employer, the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), has been caught accepting a small fortune from Taiwan’s de facto embassy while churning out materials urging the American government to go to greater lengths to arm Taiwan. In a 2013 article titled “The Secret Foreign Donor Behind the American Enterprise Institute,” The Nation’s Eli Clifton reports that, thanks to a filing error by AEI, the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office was found to have been one of the think tank’s top donors in 2009. Had that filing error not been made, we never would have learned this important information about AEI’s glaring conflict of interest in its Taiwan commentary.

AEI is one of the most prominent neoconservative think tanks in the United States, with extensive ties to Bush-era neocons like John Bolton, Paul Wolfowitz, and the Kristol and Kagan families, and has played a very active role in pushing for more war and militarism in American foreign policy. Dick Cheney sits on its board of trustees, and Mike Pompeo celebrated his one year anniversary as CIA director there.

Schake herself is as intimately interwoven with the military-industrial complex as anyone can possibly be without actually being a literal Raytheon munition. Her resume is a perfect illustration of the life of a revolving door swamp monster, from a stint at the Pentagon, to the university circuit, to the National Security Council, to the American Military Academy, to the State Department, to the McCain-Palin presidential campaign, to the Hoover Institution, to the International Institute for Strategic Studies, to her current gig as director of foreign and defense policy studies at AEI. Her entire career is the story of a woman doing everything she can to help get more people killed in military mass slaughter, and being rewarded with wealth and prestige for doing so.

And now here she is being granted space in The New York Times, a news media outlet of unrivaled influence where enemies of American militarism and imperialism are consistently denied a platform, to tell us all that the Biden administration is endangering us not with its insanely reckless hawkishness, but by being too “cautious”.

One of the craziest things happening in the world today is the way westerners are being trained to freak out all the time about Russian propaganda, which barely exists in the west, even as we are hammered every day with extreme aggression by the immensely influential propaganda of the American empire. You know you are living in a profoundly sick society when the world’s most influential newspaper runs propaganda for World War Three while voices pushing for truth, transparency and peace are marginalized, silenced, shunned, and imprisoned.