TBR News January 27, 2017

Jan 27 2017

The Voice of the White House 

Washington, D.C. January 27, 2017: “On a business trip to Moscow for a conference with my publishers, I stopped in Paris for four days for business, research and sightseeing. During that time, one of my French friends in their Foreign Office gave me a copy of an official report and summary of the causes, actions and losses of the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 2006. This document runs to over three hundred pages and is complete with charts, graphs and many photographs. Here is a translation and condensation of that report for your interest.

Subject: Causes of the attack

Both the State of Israel and the United States viewed Syria as a potentially dangerous enemy. Joint intelligence indicated that Syria was a strong supporter of the Hezbollah Shiite paramilitary group. Israel had planned a punitive military operation into Lebanon both to clip Hezbollah?s wings and send a strong message to Syria to cease and desist supplying arms and money to the anti-Israel group. Because of its involvement in Iraq, the United States indicated it would be unable to supply any ground troops but would certainly supply any kind of weapon, to include bombs, cluster bombs and ammunition for this projected operation.

A casus belli was created by the Israeli Mossad’s assassination of Rafik Haarri, a popular Lebanese politician and subsequent disinformation promulgated and instigated by both Israel and the United States blamed Syria for the killing.

The IDF was being supplied faulty and misleading intelligence information, apparently originating from Russian sources, that gave misinformation about Hezbollah positions and strengths and therefore the initial planning was badly flawed.

In full concert with the American president, the IDF launched its brutal and murderous attack on July 12, 2006 and continued unabated until the Hexbollah inflicted so many serious casualties on the Israeli forces and also on the civilian population of Israel,that their government frantically demanded that the White House force a cease fire through the United Nations. This was done for Israel on August 14, 2007 and the last act of this murderous and unprovoked assault was when Israel removed their naval blockade of Lebanese ports.

The contrived incident that launched the Israeli attack was an alleged attack by Hezbollah into Israeli territory where they were alleged to have ‘kidnapped’ two Israeli soldiers and subsequently launched a rocket attack to cover their retreat.

The conflict killed over six thousand people, most of whom were Lebanese, severely damaged Lebanese infrastructure, displaced 700,000-915,000 Lebanese, and 300,000-500,000 Israelis, and disrupted normal life across all of Lebanon and northern Israel. Even after the ceasefire, much of Southern Lebanon remained uninhabitable due to unexploded cluster bombs. As of 1 December 2006, an estimated 200,000 Lebanese remained internally displaced or refugees

During the campaign Israel’s Air Force flew more than 12,000 combat missions, its Navy fired 2,500 shells, and its Army fired over 100,000 shells. Large parts of the Lebanese civilian infrastructure were destroyed, including 400 miles of roads, 73 bridges, and 31 other targets such as Beirut International Airport, ports, water and sewage treatment plants, electrical facilities, 25 fuel stations, 900 commercial structures, up to 350 schools and two hospitals, and 15,000 homes. Some 130,000 more homes were damaged.

Israeli Defense Minister Amir Peretz ordered commanders to prepare civil defense plans. One million Israelis had to stay near or in bomb shelters or security rooms, with some 250,000 civilians evacuating the north and relocating to other areas of the country.

  • On 26 July 2006 Israeli forces attacked and destroyed an UN observer post. Described as a nondeliberate attack by Israel, the post was shelled for hours before being bombed. UN forces made repeated calls to alert Israeli forces of the danger to the UN observers, all four of whom were killed. Rescuers were shelled as they attempted to reach the post. According to an e-mail sent earlier by one of the UN observers killed in the attack, there had been numerous occasions on a daily basis where the post had come under fire from both Israeli artillery and bombing. The UN observer reportedly wrote that previous Israeli bombing near the post had not been deliberate targeting, but rather due to “tactical necessity,” military jargon which retired Canadian Major General Lewis MacKenzie later interpreted as indicating that Israeli strikes were aimed at Hezbollah targets extremely close to the post.
  • On 27 July 2006 Hezbollah ambushed the Israeli forces in Bint Jbeil and killed eighteen soldiers. Israel claimed, after this event, that it also inflicted heavy losses on Hezbollah.
  • On 28 July 2006 Israeli paratroopers killed 5 of Hezbollah’s commando elite in Bint Jbeil. In total, the IDF claimed that 80 fighters were killed in the battles at Bint Jbeil. Hezbollah sources, coupled with International Red Cross figures place the Hexbollah total at 7 dead and 129 non-combatant Lebanese civilian deaths.
  • On 30 July 2006 Israeli air strikes hit an apartment building in Qana, killing at least 65 civilians, of which 28 were children, with 25 more missing. The air strike was widely condemned.
  • On 31 July 2006 the Israeli military and Hezbollah forces engaged Hezbollah in the Battle of Ayta ash-Shab.
  • On 1 August 2006 Israeli commandos launched Operation Sharp and Smooth and landed in Baalbek and captured five civilians including one bearing the same name as Hezbollah’s leader, “Hassan Nasrallah”. All of the civilians were released after the ceasefire. Troops landed near Dar al-Himkeh hospital west of Baalbeck as part of a widescale operation in the area.
  • On 4 August 2006 the IAF attacked a building in the area of al-Qaa around 10 kilometers (six miles) from Hermel in the Bekaa Valley, Lebanon. Sixty two  farm workers, mostly Syrian and Lebanese Kurds, were killed during the airstrike.
  • On 5 August 2006 Israeli commandos carried out a nighttime raid in Tyre, blowing up a water treatment plant, a small clinic and killing 187 civilians before withdrawing.
  • On 7 August 2006 the IAF attacked the Shiyyah suburb in the Lebanese capital of Beirut, destroying three apartment buildings in the suburb, killing at least 120 people.
  • On 11 August 2006 the IAF attacked a convoy of approximately 750 vehicles containing Lebanese police, army, civilians, and one Associated Press journalist, killing at least 40 people and wounding at least 39.
  • On 12 August 2006 the IDF established its hold in South Lebanon. Over the weekend Israeli forces in southern Lebanon nearly tripled in size. and were ordered to advance towards the Litani River.
  • On 14 August 2006 the Israeli Air Force reported that they had killed the head of Hezbollah’s Special Forces, whom they identified as Sajed Dewayer,but this claim was never proven.. 80 minutes before the cessation of hostilities, the IDF targeted a Palestinian faction in the Ain al-Hilweh refugee camp in Sidon, killing a UNRWA staff member. Sixty two refugees had been killed in an attack on this camp six days prior to the incident.

During the campaign Hezbollah fired between 3,970 and 4,228 rockets. About 95% of these were 122 mm (4.8 in) Katyusha artillery rockets, which carried warheads up to 30 kg (66 lb) and had a range of up to 30 km (19 mi). An estimated 23% of these rockets hit built-up areas, primarily civilian in nature.

Cities hit included Haifa, Hadera, Nazareth, Tiberias, Nahariya, Safed, Afula, Kiryat Shmona, Beit She’an, Karmiel, and Maalot, and dozens of Kibbutzim, Moshavim, and Druze and Arab villages, as well as the northern West Bank. Hezbollah also engaged in guerrilla warfare with the IDF, attacking from well-fortified positions. These attacks by small, well-armed units caused serious problems for the IDF, especially through the use hundreds of sophisticated Russian-made anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs). Hezbollah destroyed 38 Israeli Merkava main battle tanks and damaged 82. Fifteen tanks were destroyed by anti-tank mines. Hezbollah caused an additional 65 casualties using ATGMs to collapse buildings onto Israeli troops sheltering inside.

After the initial Israeli response, Hezbollah declared an all-out military alert. Hezbollah was estimated to have 13,000 missiles at the beginning of the conflict. Israeli newspaper Haaretz described Hezbollah as a trained, skilled, well-organized, and highly motivated infantry that was equipped with the cream of modern weaponry from the arsenals of Syria, Iran, Russia, and China. Lebanese satellite TV station Al-Manar reported that the attacks had included a Fajr-3 and a Ra’ad 1, both liquid-fuel missiles developed by Iran.

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah defended the attacks, saying that Hezbollah had “started to act calmly, we focused on Israel[i] military bases and we didn?t attack any settlement, however, since the first day, the enemy attacked Lebanese towns and murdered civilians  Hezbollah militants had destroyed military bases, while the Israelis killed civilians and targeted Lebanon’s infrastructure.” Hezbollah apologized for shedding Muslim blood, and called on the Arabs of the Israeli city of Haifa to flee.

  • On 13 July 2006 in response to Israel’s retaliatory attacks in which 43  civilians were killed, Hezbollah launched rockets at Haifa for the first time, hitting a cable car station along with a few other buildings
  • On 14 July 2006 Hezbollah attacked the INS Hanit, an Israeli Sa’ar 5-class missile boat enforcing the naval blockade, with what was believed to be a radar guided C-802 anti-ship missile. 24 sailors were killed and the warship was severely damaged and towed back to port.
  • On 17 July 2006 Hezbollah hit a railroad repair depot, killing twenty-two workers. Hezbollah claimed that this attack was aimed at a large Israeli fuel storage plant adjacent to the railway facility. Haifa is home to many strategically valuable facilities such as shipyards and oil refineries.
  • On 18 July 2006 Hezbollah hit a hospital in Safed in northern Galilee, wounding twenty three.
  • On 27 July 2006 Hezbollah ambushed the Israeli forces in Bint Jbeil and killed forty one soldiers, and destroyed 12 IDF vehicles and destroyed three armored vehicles and seriously damaged eight more. Israel claimed it also inflicted heavy losses on Hezbollah.
  • On 3 August 2006 Nasrallah warned Israel against hitting Beirut and promised retaliation against Tel Aviv in this case. He also stated that Hezbollah would stop its rocket campaign if Israel ceased aerial and artillery strikes of Lebanese towns and villages.
  • On 4 August 2006 Israel targeted the southern outskirts of Beirut, and later in the day, Hezbollah launched rockets at the Hadera region.
  • On 9 August 2006 twenty three Israeli soldiers were killed when the building they were taking cover in was struck by a Hezbollah anti-tank missile and collapsed.
  • On 12 August 2006 24 Israeli soldiers were killed; the worst Israeli loss in a single day. Out of those 24, five soldiers were killed when Hezbollah shot down an Israeli helicopter, a first for the militia. Hezbollah claimed the helicopter had been attacked with a Wa’ad missile.
  • One of the most controversial aspects of the conflict has been the high number of civilian deaths. The actual proportion of civilian deaths and the responsibility of it is hotly disputed.

Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch blamed Israel for systematically failing to distinguish between combatants and civilians, which may constitute a war crime, and accused Hezbollah of committing war crimes by the deliberate and indiscriminate killing of civilians by firing rockets into populated areas

On 24 July 2006, U.N. humanitarian chief Jan Egeland said Israel’s response violated international humanitarian law, but also criticized Hezbollah for knowingly putting civilians in harm’s way by “cowardly blending…among women and children”.

During the war, Israeli jets distributed leaflets calling on civilian residents to evacuate or move north.

In response to some of this criticism, Israel has stated that it did, wherever possible, attempt to distinguish between protected persons and combatants, but that due to Hezbollah militants being in civilian clothing

Direct attacks on civilian objects are prohibited under international humanitarian law. The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) initially estimated about 35,000 homes and businesses in Lebanon were destroyed by Israel in the conflict, while a quarter of the country’s road bridges or overpasses were damaged. Jean Fabre, a UNDP spokesman, estimated that overall economic losses for Lebanon from the month-long conflict between Israel and Hezbollah totaled “at least $15 billion, if not more.”] Before and throughout the war, Hezbollah launched over 4000 unguided rockets against Israeli population centers, seeking to terrorize the Israeli population. This was in direct response to Israel’s attack on residential sections and the deliberate targeting of civilians

Amnesty International published a report stating that “the deliberate widespread destruction of apartments, houses, electricity and water services, roads, bridges, factories and ports, in addition to several statements by Israeli officials, suggests a policy of punishing both the Lebanese government and the civilian population,” and called for an international investigation of violations of international humanitarian law by both sides in the conflict.

Israel defended itself from such allegations on the grounds that Hezbollah’s use of roads and bridges for military purposes made them legitimate targets. However, Amnesty International stated that “the military advantage anticipated from destroying [civilian infrastructure] must be measured against the likely effect on civilians.”

Human Rights Watch strongly criticized Israel for using cluster bombs too close to civilians because of their inaccuracy and unreliability, suggesting that they may have gone as far as deliberately targeting civilian areas with such munitions. Hezbollah was also criticized by Human Rights Watch for filling its rockets with ball bearings, which “suggests a desire to maximize harm to civilians”; the U.N has criticized Israel for its use of cluster munitions and disproportionate attacks.

Amnesty International stated that the IDF used white phosphorus shells in Lebanon. Israel later admitted to the use of white phosphorus, but stated that it only used the incendiary against militants. However, several foreign media outlets reported observing and photographing a large number of Lebanese civilians with burns characteristic of white phosphorus attacks during the conflict.

Hezbollah casualty figures are difficult to ascertain, with claims and estimates by different groups and individuals ranging from 43 to 1,000. Hezbollah’s leadership claims that 43 of their fighters were killed in the conflict, while Israel estimated that its forces had killed 600 Hezbollah fighters. In addition, Israel claimed to have the names of 532 dead Hezbollah fighters but when challenged by Hezbollah to release the list, the Israelis dropped the issue. A UN official estimated that 50 Hezbollah fighters had been killed, and Lebanese government officials estimated that up to 49 had been killed.

The Lebanese civilian death toll is difficult to pinpoint as most published figures do not distinguish between civilians and militants, including those released by the Lebanese government. In addition, Hezbollah fighters can be difficult to identify as many do not wear military uniforms. However, it has been widely reported that the majority of the Lebanese killed were civilians, and UNICEF estimated that 30% of those killed were children under the age of 13

The death toll estimates do not include Lebanese killed since the end of fighting by land mines or unexploded US/Israeli cluster bombs. According to the National Demining Office, 297 people had been killed and 867 wounded in such blasts.

Official Israeli figures for the Israel Defense Forces troops killed range from 116 to 120. The Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs gives two different figures 117 and 119 the latter of which contains two IDF fatalities that occurred after the ceasefire went into effect. In September 2006, two local Israeli newspapers released insider information ensuring that the Israeli military death toll might climbed to around 540 soldiers. Israel refuses any outside agency access to its lists of the dead and wounded but an examination of all the accurate information available as of January 1, 2007 indicates that Israeli Defense Forces lost a total of 2300 killed with 600 of these dying in militatary hospital facilities subsequent to the conclusion of the fighting and an additional 700 very seriously wounded.

Hezbollah rockets killed 43 Israeli civilians during the conflict, including four who died of heart attacks during rocket attacks. In addition, 4,262 civilians were injured; 33 seriously, 68 moderately, 1,388 lightly, and 2,773 were treated for shock and anxiety

In March of 2007, the Israeli comptroller had planned to release an interim report that was expected to accuse the army and Olmert of leaving Israeli civilians virtually defenseless during last summer’s Lebanon war, in which Hezbollah guerrillas fired a barrage of rockets and missiles at northern Israel.”


Descending into Darkness: The Making of a Wartime President

By Brian Harring

www.amazon.com  kindle ebooks $3.99




Published for the first time ever, Descending Into Darkness shows the actual, as opposed to the propaganda, background to the upheavals in the Middle East and the reasons for the 9/11 attacks. It also includes the complete, as contrasted with the false, official (at the time this book went to press) DoD listings of U.S. Military casualties in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Also in Prelude to Disaster:

  • Events leading up to Operation Iraqi Freedom
  • War in Iraq – Russian Military Intelligence Reports & Assessment [March 17-April 8, 2003]
  • The “Nazi” Neocons – Who are they?
  • The Secret Downing Street Memo – Setting the Stage for 9/11
  • Israeli Espionage Against the United States



Table of Contents

  • Trump’s wall tax suggestion crushes the Mexican peso
  • Federal Reserve Bankers Mocked Unemployed Americans Behind Closed Doors
  • Sanctions on table ahead of US-Putin call
  • The Nihilist Intelligence Officer
  • The Zipper Documents and the Assassination of Kennedy- Part 1
  • ‘America hates California’: Bid to make Golden State separate nation jumps first hurdle
  • ‘Mein Kampf’: Murphy translation: Part 19

Trump’s wall tax suggestion crushes the Mexican peso

January 27, 2017


The Mexican currency continued a downward slide against the dollar after US President Donald Trump floated an idea how to make Mexico pay for the border wall.

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer suggested a 20 percent tax on imports from the country, which could help to finance the initiative.

This pushed the Mexican currency down one percent to 21.3 pesos against the greenback. Since the beginning of the year, the peso has plunged nearly three percent against the dollar, and the currency is down over 16 percent since Trump’s election on November 8.

“If you tax that $50 billion at 20 percent of imports – which is, by the way, a practice that 160 other countries do – right now our country’s policy is to tax exports and let imports flow freely in, which is ridiculous. By doing it that we can do $10 billion a year and easily pay for the wall just through that mechanism alone,” said Spicer.

Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto said on Thursday that his country would not pay for any wall, which “divides” the US and Mexico.

Trump tweeted that if Mexico is reluctant to pay for the wall, he will cancel a meeting with Nieto on January 31.

“The US has a $60 billion trade deficit with Mexico. It has been a one-sided deal from the beginning of NAFTA with massive numbers of jobs and companies lost,” the president tweeted. “If Mexico is unwilling to pay for the badly needed wall, then it would be better to cancel the upcoming meeting.”

In response, the Mexican president tweeted in Spanish, that he informed the White House that he would not be attending the meeting.

President Trump is pushing to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) between the US, Canada and Mexico sealed in 1994 to win better terms for the US.

The Mexican economy is heavily dependent on the US, with 80 percent of its exports shipped to America.

Federal Reserve Bankers Mocked Unemployed Americans Behind Closed Doors

January 27 2017

by Matt Stoller

The Intercept

In 2011, unemployment was at a near crisis level. The jobless rate was stuck around 9 percent nationally, an unusually high number due to the continuing effects of the financial crash.

House Democrats were aghast. “With almost five unemployed Americans for every job opening, too many people remain jobless because of a lack of work, not a lack of wanting to work,” said Congressman Lloyd Doggett, D-Tex. So in early November 2011, they introduced a bill to reauthorize Federal unemployment benefits, an insurance program designed to aide those looking for work.

Behind closed doors at the Federal Reserve however, the conversation struck a different tone.

The Federal Reserve’s mandate is to promote “maximum employment,” which essentially means: print enough money so that everyone who wants one has a job. Yet according to transcripts released this month after the traditional five-year waiting period, Federal Reserve officials in November 2011 were debating whether unemployment was caused by bad work ethics and drug use – rather than by the greatest financial crisis in 80 years. This debate then factored into the argument over setting monetary policy.

“I frequently hear of jobs going unfilled because a large number of applicants have difficulty passing basic requirements like drug tests or simply demonstrating the requisite work ethic,” said Dennis Lockhart, a former Citibank executive who ran the Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank. “One contact in the staffing industry told us that during their pretesting process, a majority—actually, 60 percent of applicants—failed to answer ‘0’ to the question of how many days a week it’s acceptable to miss work.”

The room of central bankers then broke into laughter.

Charles Plosser, the president of the Philadelphia Federal Reserve, cited “work ethic” as a common complaint he heard in his district, both in rural and inner city areas. A contact of his who owned 60 McDonald’s restaurants said “passing drug tests, passing literacy tests, and work ethic are the primary problems he has in hiring people.”

His wife, he noted, had attended a meeting in Philadelphia where employers cited literacy, work ethic, and drugs as impediments to hiring.

It was hardly the first time these bankers blamed unemployment on the unemployed, rather than, say, bankers. In an April meeting that year, Richmond Federal Reserve President Jeff Lacker told participants that “Several firms told us of difficulty finding adequate workers, because they preferred to collect unemployment benefits or can’t pass drug tests.” He reiterated that point in November, saying that in West Virginia he was told by an employment agency that “unquestionably the biggest problem in hiring skilled and unskilled workers was the inability to pass a drug test.”

Lacker’s Federal Reserve district includes West Virginia. In August, he again spoke of “widespread reports about hard drug use, OxyContin and methamphetamine, in Appalachia and other rural parts of our District—in particular, Appalachia.”

Apparently his colleagues responded with laughter again, because he then said “Drug abuse and the hardship involved in unemployment aren’t really laughing matters.” Usage, he noted, isn’t higher than the national norm in West Virginia. “It’s hard to pin this down quantitatively,” he continued, wondering if there was “something meaningful there as a contributor to impediments to labor market functioning.”

These debates took place within the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), the Federal Reserve body tasked with “influenc[ing] the availability and cost of money and credit to help promote national economic goals.” The debate revealed a split within the Federal Reserve system between “hawks” who worry more about inflation than unemployment, and “doves” who believe that too many are going without jobs. Typically, “hawks” tend to lean to the right politically, and “doves” tend to lean slightly more to the left.

Lacker is one of the most “hawkish” members of the FOMC, which means he tends to be in favor of higher interest rates and higher unemployment to ward off inflation. In 2015, Lacker ascribed increasing inequality to the lack of college education among the poor

Sarah Bloom Raskin, a dovish member of the Board of Governors, countered by saying that unemployment was a function of the financial crisis. “The economy remains mired in the worst slump since that of the 1930s,” she said.

Daniel Tarullo, another dovish Federal Reserve governor appointed by President Obama, called the focus on drug use a “red herring.” He said, “We had that problem 25 years ago, 20 years ago, 10 years ago; we have it today; and we’re going to have it 5 years from now.” He cited housing debt from the largest housing bubble in history as a core driver of unemployment.

The transcripts illustrate how the controversial method of picking Federal Reserve officials plays out in setting monetary policy: The three men who cited work ethic or drug use as a cause of unemployment instead of the financial crash were picked by regional private sector businessmen to lead the local Reserve banks.

The Dodd-Frank financial reform law passed in 2010 mandated that the Federal Reserve Board in Washington approve the choices of private businessmen, but the Board has yet to reject any suggested candidates. The board members who cited the financial crash as causing unemployment were appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate.

The concept of having private business interests selecting public officials has been criticized by experts. As Wharton professor and author of “The Power and Independence of the Federal Reserve” Peter Conti-Brown put it, “It’s not clear at all that the opaque and obscure process by which the private sector selects the Reserve Bank presidents produces superior central bankers than the public process used to select the remaining principal officers of the United States.” This controversial selection process risks having, as he put it, “a system for enhancing the influence of certain slices of society on our central banking policy.

Lacker and Lockhart are retiring this year. Advocates and experts are putting pressure on the Richmond Federal Reserve to replace retiring Reserve Bank Presidents with someone more attuned to the reality of unemployment. Fed Up, a coalition of advocates seeking to shift the Fed from its traditionally pro-bank policies, is seeking to have the regional bank President’s picked with more attention to the needs of workers.

Jordan Haedtler, deputy campaign manager of Fed Up, lashed out at Lacker’s comments as related in the newly released transcripts. “Even nine years into the recovery, workers are still struggling to get the wages and hours they need,” Haedtler said. “Yet with unemployment above double digits in huge swaths of President Lacker’s district in 2011, he was citing anecdotes about drug use and desire to collect unemployment benefits as key reasons why employers weren’t hiring. Rather than looking for solutions and talking to people who were out of work, he was seeking excuses from employers.”

President Donald Trump has a number of vacancies on the Federal Reserve Board to fill as well. He has been highly critical of Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen. He argued, without citing evidence, that she pursued monetary policy goals to help support Barack Obama and elect Hillary Clinton. If Yellen and Tarullo follow custom and step down from their board slots in 2018, Trump could appoint a majority of Federal Reserve board members within two years.

Despite the importance of monetary policy, the Federal Reserve keeps the transcripts of internal deliberations of the committee that sets monetary policy out of public view for at least five years. But the people who attend those meetings take other jobs — some in the financial services industry. In 2010, incoming House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa questioned whether it was appropriate for the Fed to withhold its deliberations for so long. “If the Fed’s full transcripts can be released sooner, they should be,” he said.

The debate in the Fed and within Congress was ultimately resolved. The Federal Reserve kept interest rates low. And in 2011, a new wave of recently elected Tea Party Republicans and Democrats finally compromised on language to cut unemployment benefits.

Neither West Virginia senator, Shelley Moore Capito nor Joe Manchin, would comment on Lacker’s discussion of the West Virginia drug epidemic and its relationship to unemployment. The Appalachia region, including West Virginia, went strongly for Trump in the 2016 election.

Sanctions on table ahead of US-Putin call

January 27, 2017

BBC News

President Donald Trump and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin will speak by telephone on Saturday, according to the White House and the Kremlin.

The two world leaders are expected to discuss bilateral affairs and national security in the first call since Mr Trump’s inauguration.

Mr Trump has also hinted at lifting some of the US sanctions on Russia.

But Republicans have expressed opposition to any softer White House line against Moscow.

Senator John McCain, who says Mr Putin is a thug, said that would be a “reckless course” and he would pursue legislation to enforce the sanctions.

Mr Trump will also speak to German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande on Saturday.

Also on Friday, at the end of Mr Trump’s first week in power, he:

◾hosted his first foreign leader, British Prime Minister Theresa May, at the White House as part of an effort to reaffirm the “special relationship”

◾sent a message of support to anti-abortion activists holding a large rally in Washington

◾is expected to sign an executive order restricting refugee entry to the US

◾held an hour-long phone call with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto to repair relations that have soured over the border wall plan

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov confirmed the phone call between Mr Trump and Mr Putin, but said it was unlikely to result in any specific agreements.

But Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway told Fox News on Friday that removing US sanctions on Russia was “under consideration”.

“I assume they will discuss, in the interests of their respective countries, how to come together and work together on issues where you can find common ground and where these two nations could maybe defeat radical Islamic terrorism,” she also told CBS News.

The president has vowed to strengthen relations with the Kremlin despite allegations from the US intelligence community that Russia tried to interfere in the US president election to benefit Mr Trump.

As a result, President Barack Obama issued a new round of sanctions against Russia and expelled 35 Russian diplomats for Moscow’s alleged election-related cyber attacks.

Can Mr Trump undo Russian sanctions? – Anthony Zurcher, BBC News North America Reporter

Donald Trump’s planned phone conversation with President Vladimir Putin could lay the groundwork for a rollback of US sanctions on Russia.

There are reports that a presidential order undoing Barack Obama’s executive actions has already been drafted.

If this ends up being the case, it would likely ignite a battle between the administration and a bipartisan coalition in Congress.

While Republican Capitol Hill leadership may be loath to pick a fight with Mr Trump so early in his presidency, anti-Russia hawks in the Senate – led by Republican Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham – may find common cause with the body’s Democratic minority.

Together they could push legislation that enshrine the administration-imposed sanctions into law, much the way Congress solidified Bush-era anti-Iran measures during Mr Obama’s presidency.

Mr Trump has been bedevilled by criticisms that he has too close a relationship with Mr Putin, inflamed by intelligence reports of Russian meddling in the US election and an ongoing investigation into ties between Russia and former Trump campaign aides.

While the new president may see sanction-removal as the first step in forging closer ties with a former adversary, the move could come with at a high political price.

The Kremlin has vehemently denied any allegations that it coordinated hacks on the US election.

Earlier this month, Mr Trump suggested he would ease sanctions on Moscow imposed by the Obama administration if the nation helped in the battle against terrorism.

US and European Union (EU) sanctions were already in place after Russia’s 2014 annexation of Crimea and last month, the EU extended them.

The Nihilist Intelligence Officer

CIA employees are not staging a coup against Donald Trump.

January 25, 2017

by Philip Giraldi

The American Conservative

It would never occur to ordinary CIA officers that derailing a presidency might be a desirable thing to do. The rumor of some kind of coup in the making is the creation of a media that is looking for a story and trying to bash Donald Trump at the same time.

To be sure, there has been an open dispute between Trump and several intelligence officials over the nature of the alleged Russian threat, with the new president tending to dismiss the alarms being raised by former CIA director John Brennan and others. Trump has struck back against the criticism in general terms, noting dismissively how several of the various agencies that make up the community have had a tendency to get things wrong, most notably the CIA’s Weapons of Mass Destruction assessment on Iraq.

Sometimes this rift has morphed into an alternative media narrative suggesting that the intelligence agencies are actually trying to stage a soft coup through their criticism of Trump and his advisers, attempting to delegitimize the presidency and wage war on Trump’s policies as he struggles to establish himself in Washington. There have also been allegations that leaks reportedly coming from the top levels of several agencies have been intended to discredit the new president.

Some others have noted, less alarmingly, that a president at odds with the intelligence agencies he directs is a formula for trouble internally and will also create problems in sharing information with friendly foreign security services. Those who are more conspiracy-minded see instead a focused effort to pile up criticism and distractions that will narrow Trump’s options for dealing with Russia and the Middle East. In its most extreme rendition, some suspect that the national security “deep state” is even eager to enter into a new Cold War with Moscow, possibly to justify its own existence and emoluments.

Trump has responded sharply to a so-called dossier containing allegations about his relationship with Moscow, calling the possibility that an intelligence agency leaked the scandalous but unverifiable material something that might have happened in Nazi Germany. John Brennan saw an unacceptable analogy in that comment and also warned that the impression that the White House does not trust its own spies could have major international repercussions. He recommended that the new president should be more careful in what he says and does, particularly regarding Russia, further fueling the perception that the national-security state is building a united front against any possible shift in policy.

I do not, however, share the view that a major conflict between America’s intelligence community and the Trump administration is in place or somehow developing. Nor is there a potential problem with foreign intelligence services, which continue to receive much more information from Washington than they provide. Yes, there is a rift between the new White House and its national-security apparatus, but what we have been seeing is a largely internal conflict between the outgoing Obama administration and the incoming Trump administration over the foreign-policy and national-security agenda.

Sources of Russian Hysteria

Obama, for reasons that elude me, used his last several weeks in office to punish Russia. Relying on the as of yet evidence-free claims of Moscow’s interference in the U.S. election as a pretext, 35 Russian diplomats and their families were expelled just before the New Year while an American infantry brigade supported by armor was shifted to Poland over a largely speculative threat to allies in Eastern Europe.

The Obama attempt to lock Russia into a certain foreign-policy box has been aided and abetted by a largely Democratic Party and media-induced hysteria over the results of the election, one that increasingly blames Russia and Vladimir Putin personally for the outcome. The narrative has expanded as it has gone along, adding an apparent Russian-Putin plan to destabilize all of Europe. Republican notables, including Sens. John McCain and Lindsey Graham, have eagerly jumped on board the bandwagon and are chairing committee hearings where no one who has anything exculpatory to say about Russia need apply.

But as the CIA does not often do things spontaneously, someone should be asking who in the White House directed the agency and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence to focus on Russia and the election, resulting in the yet-to-be-seen-by-the-public classified 35-page report on the alleged hack that is now being used to explain the stunning election results. As John Brennan has been promoting the anti-Russian agenda as Obama’s yes-man in Langley, he is almost certainly the source of much of the prevailing narrative, but one nevertheless has to assume that he was acting under orders.

Another prominent former CIA officer who has also been aggressively pushing the anti-Russian button is retired Acting Director Michael Morell. He is best known for his recent recommendation that the United States begin to assassinate Iranians and Russians to send a “serious” message that they are interfering in Syria—and that we are really angry about what they are doing. (Morell somehow missed the fact that we are the ones who are interfering, as Syria has an internationally recognized government that has sought assistance from Tehran and Moscow while excluding us.)

Morell is currently calling on Russian President Vladimir Putin to return whistleblower Edward Snowden to the U.S. so he can be tried and punished as an inaugural “gift” to President Trump. If the proposal is being made in all seriousness, it suggests that Morell has completely lost touch with what most would regard as reality.

Morell is inevitably a passionate Clinton supporter who might have been aspiring to be named as her CIA director. During the campaign, he described Trump as an “unwitting agent” of Russia even though his own career through the CIA bureaucracy rather suggests that “unwitting” might well apply to several of his stops along the way. Morell, as White House briefer, delivered the false report that 9/11 hijacker Mohammed Atta had met with an Iraqi intelligence officer in Prague. He also presented to George W. Bush the August 2001 CIA report suggesting that a major terrorist strike on the U.S. was about to take place but added his own view that “there was no need to worry about an Al Qaida attack on the homeland.” Morell also led the team of analysts that prepared the infamous Colin Powell UN speech that falsely claimed Iraq possessed “biological weapons and the capability to rapidly produce more, many more.”

But Morell is gone for good unless one has the misfortune to see him on CBS News. Brennan is now also out the door, soon to be replaced by Mike Pompeo, and if Brennan’s personal staff is not gone already, it soon will be. So the drive for a certain flavor of foreign policy being supported by cherry-picked intelligence to suit will lose its raison d’être and will change to conform with what the new administration desires.

The Permanent CIA

The CIA is not the departed John Brennan and his inner circle of heavily politicized senior managers. Nor is it Michael Morell. It is nearly 20,000 employees who are generally type-A personalities: headstrong and largely unwilling to have anyone tell them what is right and what is wrong. Many who work through a couple of overseas tours return home pretty much as political nihilists, regarding one band of corrupt politicians pretty much like any other, including those who sit in Washington. To cite only one example, while serving in Geneva, fugitive whistleblower Edward Snowden recounted how he met many American spies who were deeply opposed to the ongoing war in Iraq and U.S. policy in the Middle East. “The CIA case officers were all going, what the hell are we doing?” That kind of reaction by CIA’s foot soldiers to what was coming out of Washington was not exactly unusual.

An interesting recent op-ed by David Ignatius, who is well plugged in to Washington intelligence circles, explains inter alia how the CIA is not equivalent to the agency leadership, which comes and goes with each administration. As Ignatius describes, most CIA staffers are currently more engaged in a controversial internal reorganization Brennan has been implementing over the past year—in part to punish the agency’s actual spies, who reportedly rejected his services 37 years ago, instead forcing him to become an analyst. He has never forgiven them, apparently. Ignatius cites two senior operations officers who describe the changes as the “revenge of the nerds.”

The bottom line is that few agency staffers care very deeply about how Donald Trump might perceive the organization that pays them, as long as it continues to pay them and gives them at least a modicum of respect. No cuts in the intelligence-community budget are anticipated and some believe that it might actually increase. I know there were no exit polls at CIA headquarters, but I would bet that an overwhelming majority of agency staffers, who normally identify as Republicans anyway, actually voted for Donald Trump. Many were more than a little disgusted by what they regarded as a pusillanimous Obama and hold Hillary Clinton in utter contempt for no-fault email caper.

Trump, for his part, has clearly understood the need to reassure the intelligence community that new management is preparing to take over. His first visit to a government agency on the day after the inauguration was to CIA, where he was applauded as he said at least some of the right things to heal the breach.

Sure, it is nice to be loved—but it is far more important to have a good job with benefits, work that is fulfilling, and regular promotions that help pay the mortgage and kids’ college tuition. CIA employees who put their job and family first will go with the program as long as the leadership doesn’t go completely bonkers. Most also take seriously their oath to uphold the Constitution, not necessarily what they perceive as the propaganda that comes out of every White House.

The Zipper Documents and the Assassination of Kennedy- Part 1

January 27, 2017

by Gregory Douglas

The assassination of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy in Dallas, Texas, on November 22, 1963, continues to generate an enormous amount of popular controversy, more so than any other historical happening in recorded memory. The killing took place in a major American city in full view of hundreds of people and in broad daylight, yet years after the event, a dispassionate overview of the incident is impossible to achieve. The act and its consequences are as cluttered as the dense Indian jungle that so thoroughly hides the gaudy tiger from the sight of its prey.

The initial stunned confusion in Dallas has continued, with much official connivance, into succeeding decades, with an immense proliferation of books, magazine articles, motion picture productions, and television dramas, which are equally divided between assaults on previous productions and the presentation of even more confusion, theory, and supposition.

One camp consists entirely of what can best be termed the “official version” and in the other camp are the “revisionist versions.” There is only one of the former and a multitude of the others.

There is no question in the minds of anyone that John F. Kennedy was shot dead in Dallas, Texas, in November of 1963. The real issue is who shot him and why.

Is the report of the official Warren Commission correct?  Was the President killed by a disaffected man who acted entirely alone? Was his subsequent murder perpetrated by another disaffected man who also acted entirely alone?

Are the legions of revisionists correct? Was the Kennedy assassination the result of a plot? And if there was a plot, who were the plotters and what were their motives?

The overwhelming majority of the public, who are the final arbiters of whatever may pass for historical truth, has, in the intervening years, come to believe less in the determined certainty of officialdom and more in the questions raised by those who cannot accept official dictums.

In a very strong sense, the Kennedy assassination marked an important watershed in the relationship between the American public and its elected and appointed officials. Before that event, what the government said was almost universally accepted as the truth. There was unquestioning and simplistic belief, and more, there was trust in the pronouncements from the Beltway and its numerous and often very slavish servants in academia and the American media. It is true, people would say, because it is printed in my newspaper and supported by important and knowledgeable savants.

That the media and academia might be influenced by, if not actually commanded by, the government rarely occurred to anyone outside of a small handful of chronic malcontents.

The questions that were raised by the Warren Commission’s lengthy and thoroughly disorganized report were certainly in many cases very important. That there were many errors in this hasty attempt to allay national anxieties is clearly evident, but in retrospect, and in view of recently disclosed evidence, these are more errors of commission than omission.

The Warren Report was prepared and released to the public not to encourage questioning but to silence it as quickly as possible. There are many cogent reasons for this desire for silence and acceptance, not the least of which was the urgent desire for self-preservation and the maintenance of the integrity of the governmental system.

In actuality, the American currency is not backed by gold or silver holdings but by the blind faith of the public. If the concept of unquestioning belief in governmental currency stability is questioned, economic chaos can be the result and this applies equally to government probity.

To quote from the title of the first and very important revisionist work on the Kennedy assassination, there was a great “rush to judgment” and a frantic desire on the part of the official establishment to completely bury not only the murdered President, but also any questions his killing might have engendered with him.

Was the primary reason for this desire for closure merely a desire to placate public opinion or were there other, and far more sinister, reasons for this rush to judgment?

Those who question the official chronicle have been severely hampered by the fact that all the records, documents, interviews, and other evidentiary material are securely under governmental custody and control. It is beyond the belief of any reasonable person to think that an official agency would release to the public any material that would bring the official judgment into question. This is not only institutional maintenance but also, all things in evidence now considered, a frantic effort at self-preservation.

Not all documents, however, lie under government control, and there exist reports that do not only question the Warren Report’s findings but are also of such a nature as to both thoroughly discredit it and, in the final analysis, bring it to ruin.

Such a historical land mine lay for years in the personal files of Robert Trumbull Crowley, once Deputy Director for Operations for the Central Intelligence Agency. Crowley, who had authored books on Soviet intelligence, died in October of 2000 after a long illness.

When Crowley retired from the CIA in the 1980s, he took a significant quantity of important historical documents with him and, prior to his death, gave a number of these to various historians with whom he occasionally cooperated.

Among these documents was a lengthy paper prepared by the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) in 1978 as a commentary on Soviet intelligence evaluations of the Kennedy assassination.

The Defense Intelligence Agency, a branch of the Department of Defense, specializes in the analysis of foreign military technical intelligence.

This document was considered highly sensitive, for reasons that shall shortly become very evident, and its distribution was limited to a handful of copies with severely restricted circulation.

Crowley had a copy of this explosive document because he had personal knowledge of the factors and personalities behind the assassination and had, in fact, prior professional knowledge of the information contained in the DIA secret paper.

The second and certainly even more important document is a 98 pages long paper entitled “OPERATION ZIPPER Conference Record.” This document is a long list of decisions and activities of various U.S. authorities in a project with the code name “Operation ZIPPER.”

The distribution of this document was restricted to five persons, one of them being R. T. Crowley, in whose papers a copy of it was found.

This book uses the official DIA Report and the “Operation ZIPPER” document as its framework. In addition to that, the author uses the notes he made during endless hours of conversation he had with R. T. Crowley in the years between 1993 and 1996, and has dug deeply into the great body of literature on the assassination of J. F. Kennedy to flesh out what has proven to be a very ugly skeleton. In sum, it puts sinews and flesh on the bones of a monster.

The loss of faith is a terrible matter and one can say after reading these papers and with bitter truth: “Who then will guard the guardians?”


It is generally the custom for beginning writers to thank anyone and everyone even remotely connected with his book. Book editors, typists, library personnel, former teachers, family members, and pets are all given their five seconds of fame (or far less depending upon the sales of the book).

However, that having been said, the author would like to offer the most sincere and grateful, albeit posthumous, thanks to the late Colonel Robert T. Crowley of Washington, D.C., and his co-worker, Colonel William Corson, USMC (United States Marine Corps), of Potomac, Maryland, for all of the very important advice and assistance they have rendered to the grateful author. Also their friend and co-worker, Joe Trento of Front Royal, Virginia, for his valuable commentary and excellent advice, especially concerning the activities of James Jesus Angleton.

As opposed to acknowledging others who aided in the actual preparation of this study, recognition ought to be given on the author’s part for research into American intelligence matters.

David Lifton’s work, Best Evidence,  is a brilliant analysis of the Kennedy autopsy; Thomas C. Reeves, A Question of Character  is one of the best revisionist views of the life and political career of John F. Kennedy; Thomas Dale Scott’s work, Deep Politics and the Death of JFK  is a sensible and studied work on the backgrounds of Kennedy adversaries; and Seymour Hersh’s work The Dark Side of Camelot  gives a far more detailed revisionist look into JFK and provides considerable background on his Soviet connection. Almost every book on the subject, regardless of how bizarre it might appear to the average reader, contains small nuggets of value to be mined by the thorough researcher.

Former CBS news director and documentary producer, Los Angeles-based Ted Landreth has done prodigies investigating certain highly sensitive CIA operations inside the United States.

Also, an important work is Gerald Posner’s Case Closed.  This work is an excellent overview and defense of the official establishment point of view. That the American media lavishly praised it when it appeared in 1993 is a commentary on the objectivity of the media.


Tuesday, October 10, 2000: Page B06, Washington Post:

“Robert Trumbull Crowley

Senior CIA Officer

Robert Trumbull Crowley, 76, a senior CIA officer whose career spanned from the agency’s inception in 1947 until his retirement in the mid-1980s, died Oct. 8 at Sibley Memorial Hospital. He had congestive heart failure and dementia.

Mr. Crowley became assistant deputy director for operations, the second in command in the clandestine directorate of operations. After retiring, he co-wrote a book with former CIA intelligence officer and Marine Corps officer William R. Corson, “The New KGB: Engine of Soviet Power,” published by William Morrow in 1985.

Mr. Crowley, a Washington resident, was a Chicago native and attended the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y. He served in the Army in the Pacific during World War II and retired from the Army Reserve in 1986 as a lieutenant colonel.

Survivors include his wife since 1948, Emily Upton Crowley of Washington; a son, Greg Upton Crowley of Washington; and two granddaughters.”

In 1996, Robert Crowley entered a Washington hospital for major surgery. It was believed that he might have cancer of the lungs. The operation was successful but Crowley, who had been suffering from short-term memory problems, slipped into a state of chronic dementia from which he never recovered.

Before entering the hospital, Crowley, known in the CIA as the “Crow,” sent off two packets of documents from his extensive files to the author of this book with instructions to return the papers if he survived the operation. After the operation, it was evident to Crowley’s family that he would do no more writing and I was told to keep the papers and not to return them.

As one of the most powerful men in the Central Intelligence Agency and one of the least known outside of the Agency, Crowley was involved in most of the important CIA operations during his tenure. His personal files are of great value to researchers and cover both foreign and domestic intelligence operations.

Among these papers was the above mentioned DIA Report, a 1978 in-depth analysis of a Soviet intelligence report on the assassination of President John Kennedy. At one time, the Russians were held suspect in this act, and in the intervening years, their intelligence organs had been compiling data in refutation of this thesis. It should be noted that Lee Oswald, the purported assassin, had defected to the Soviet Union and, while resident in that country, married the niece of an MVD  intelligence officer.

Although the DIA Report makes it very clear that Oswald was a source for the Office of Naval Intelligence and that his defection was spurious, his openly avowed Marxism, public support of the Communist government of Cuban dictator Fidel Castro, and his repeated pro-Communist utterances made him a very handy weapon with which to attack the Russians.

The DIA Report, signed by Army Colonel Vedder B. Driscoll, chief of the Soviet Intelligence division of the DIA, appears to be the first official analysis of the Kennedy assassination that does not follow the official line, and which survived the post-assassination shredding frenzy that seized the American intelligence community.

Theories, opinions and arguments abound concerning the Kennedy assassination and while many authors will applaud Driscoll’s DIA Report, others will reject it. Rejection or acceptance depends entirely on what an author may have previously published on the subject.

The other surviving official paper, the already mentioned “Operation ZIPPER” document, will most likely cause an even more heated controversy, since it does not have a cover document and consists merely of a brief listing of persons and agencies involved, decisions made, and events that took place during and after the preparation of Kennedy’s assassination.

Over 2,500 works on the assassination have appeared in print to date but nothing approaches what can best be termed the “Driscoll Report” and the “ZIPPER Document” for brevity and accuracy. The reader is given a unique view of the events in Dallas and Washington post-November 22, 1963.

The facts behind the Kennedy assassination are found in the Driscoll Report and the ZIPPER Document. For the first time, the actual motives of those who organized and instigated the act are clearly and decisively exposed, as are the techniques of the actual shooting, the nature of the weapons used, and the means by which the shooters escaped.

These documents do not challenge the famous Warren Report that has been ridiculed by many and supported by few; they merely supersede it.

The ZIPPER Document reveals, most importantly, the names and official positions of those who directed the killers. For example, the man who instigated the attack was one of the highest level American intelligence officials, and the man to whom he entrusted the supervision of the assassins was someone who had been involved in one of the most important American intelligence-gathering actions against the Soviet Union, an operation that the Driscoll Report now reveals had been known to the Soviets even before it was launched! The fate of the shooters is also revealed; only one of them lived more than a month after Kennedy died.

In this work, rather than present the endlessly chewed arguments of others to dazzle or bore the reader, the reports are presented in excerpt (Driscoll) or in full (ZIPPER) with appropriate commentary.

This study is organized into a number of chapters. The assassination itself is covered by a translation of the Soviet intelligence report, followed by pertinent and parallel excerpts from the official Warren Commission Report and the Defense Intelligence Agency analysis. The observations of the author conclude each section.

The next chapters will cover the more important players. Again, first a Soviet report, followed by the pertinent sections of the Warren Report, the DIA analysis, and concluding with the author’s comments. The Warren Commission Report basically covered the actual assassination and the subsequent murder of the alleged assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald. Both the Soviet and Driscoll Reports contain additional material not covered in the Warren Commission Report.

Subsequent chapters addressing the real history of the Kennedy assassination are based mainly on the ZIPPER Document with some use of the Driscoll Report, and are backed by information the author received during his many conversations with R. T. Crowley.

Long years of suspicion, investigation and revisionist commentary have ended with the discovery and publication of the Driscoll Report and the ZIPPER Document from the papers of top CIA official, Robert Crowley.

The deadly international plots, assassinations of unpopular foreign politicians, active involvement in the world-wide drug market, ruthless manipulation of the United States government to include the office of the President, counterfeitings, the fomenting of revolts and bloody uprisings in nations friendly to the United States, the infiltration and control of the American and foreign print and film media, and the general belief that their opinions should dictate America’s domestic and foreign policy have led directly to such anti-American incidents as the murder of American citizens and such explosive outrages as the recent attack on the World Trade Center.

The Central Intelligence Agency, which likes to picture itself as the protective shield of the American people, has proven itself to be consistently wrong in its analysis of almost every problem presented to it, and has alienated by its actions a good part of the world which at one time had been neutral in its opinion of America if not sympathetic. It is beyond belief that a complicated, yearlong international plot against America, which culminated in the WTC attack and which involved hundreds of people, could not have been observed by the CIA. This is either an example of gross incompetence at best or connivance at worst.

The Crowley Papers give all of us a true understanding of the meaning of Lord Acton’s dictum, “Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

  Next, the Assassination

‘America hates California’: Bid to make Golden State separate nation jumps first hurdle

January 27, 2017


A proposal for California to break away from the United States has been submitted to the Secretary of State’s Office in the state capital. If it qualifies, it could trigger a vote on whether the most populous US state should become a separate nation.

The group behind the proposal, Yes California Independence Campaign, was cleared on Thursday by Californian Secretary of State Alex Padilla to begin the bid to collect some 600,000 voter signatures required to put the ambitious plan on the ballot, AP reported. The initiative would ask voters to repeal part of the state constitution that declares California an “inseparable part of the United States of America.”

The proposed constitutional amendment, titled California Nationhood, would also ask voters to repeal the clause that describes the US Constitution as the “supreme law of the land.” If approved, it suggests scheduling a vote in March 2019 to ask Americans, “Should California become a free, sovereign and independent country?”

The initiative maintains that the election “shall constitute a Declaration of Independence from the United States of America” if two key conditions are met: at least 50 percent of registered voters participate and at least 55 percent vote ‘Yes’.

If both of conditions are satisfied, the measure requires submission to the United Nations of an application for the “newly-independent Republic of California” to be a UN member state, the initiative says, as cited by the Sacramento-based Legislative Analyst’s Office (LAO).

Being a US state is “no longer serving California’s best interests,” the movement claims.

“Not only is California forced to subsidize this massive military budget with our taxes, but Californians are sent off to fight in wars that often do more to perpetuate terrorism than to abate it. The only reason terrorists might want to attack us is because we are part of the United States and are guilty by association. Not being a part of that country will make California a less likely target of retaliation by its enemies,” the campaign argues, among other things.

“America already hates California, and America votes on emotions,” Marcus Evans, vice-president of Yes California told to the Los Angeles Times.

“I think we’d have the votes today if we held it,” he added.

It must submit the valid voter signatures by July 25 to qualify for the November 2018 ballot.

The number of Californians who would rather see their state a sovereign nation than part of the United States jumped to 32 percent, a new Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll showed earlier this week. In 2014, it was only 20 percent.

The support for independence apparently rose in the wake of Donald Trump’s election in the November presidential election.

The poll was taken from December 6 to January 16 and has a credibility interval of 5 percentage points in California.


‘Mein Kampf’: Murphy translation: Part 19

January 26, 2017

There have been a number of translations of Hitler’s seminal book. Most have been heavily edited so as to promulgate disinformation about Hitler’s views and remove passages that might offend the sensitive.

The Murphy translation is considered to be the most accurate and is being reprinted in toto here.

Our next publication of this work will be the unexpurgated original German edition.

German officially- approved historians have recently released a highly doctored edition of ‘Mein Kampf’ that is selling very well in Germany.

Perhaps a free copy of the unredacted original work would do better in the same marketplace. Ed




Owing to the rapid growth of the movement, in 1922 we felt compelled to take a definite stand on a question which has not been fully solved even yet.

In our efforts to discover the quickest and easiest way for the movement to reach the heart of the broad masses we were always confronted with the objection that the worker could never completely belong to us while his interests in the purely vocational and economic sphere were cared for by a political organization conducted by men whose principles were quite different from ours.

That was quite a serious objection. The general belief was that a workman engaged in some trade or other could not exist if he did not belong to a trade union. Not only were his professional interests thus protected but a guarantee of permanent employment was simply inconceivable without membership in a trade union. The majority of the workers were in the trades unions. Generally speaking, the unions had successfully conducted the battle for the establishment of a definite scale of wages and had concluded agreements which guaranteed the worker a steady income. Undoubtedly the workers in the various trades benefited by the results of that campaign and, for honest men especially, conflicts of conscience must have arisen if they took the wages which had been assured through the struggle fought by the trades unions and if at the same time the men themselves withdrew from the fight.

It was difficult to discuss this problem with the average bourgeois employer. He had no understanding (or did not wish to have any) for either the material or moral side of the question. Finally he declared that his own economic interests were in principle opposed to every kind of organization which joined together the workmen that were dependent on him. Hence it was for the most part impossible to bring these bourgeois employers to take an impartial view of the situation. Here, therefore, as in so many other cases, it was necessary to appeal to disinterested outsiders who would not be subject to the temptation of fixing their attention on the trees and failing to see the forest. With a little good will on their part, they could much more easily understand a state of affairs which is of the highest importance for our present and future existence.

In the first volume of this book I have already expressed my views on the nature and purpose and necessity of trade unions. There I took up the standpoint that unless measures are undertaken by the State (usually futile in such cases) or a new ideal is introduced in our education, which would change the attitude of the employer towards the worker, no other course would be open to the latter except to defend his own interests himself by appealing to his equal rights as a contracting party within the economic sphere of the nation’s existence. I stated further that this would conform to the interests of the national community if thereby social injustices could be redressed which otherwise would cause serious damage to the whole social structure. I stated, moreover, that the worker would always find it necessary to undertake this protective action as long as there were men among the employers who had no sense of their social obligations nor even of the most elementary human rights. And I concluded by saying that if such self-defence be considered necessary its form ought to be that of an association made up of the workers themselves on the basis of trades unions.

This was my general idea and it remained the same in 1922. But a clear and precise formula was still to be discovered. We could not be satisfied with merely understanding the problem. It was necessary to come to some conclusions that could be put into practice. The following questions had to be answered:

(1) Are trade unions necessary?

(2) Should the German National Socialist Labour Party itself operate on a trade unionist basis or have its members take part in trade unionist activities in some form or other?

(3) What form should a National Socialist Trades Union take? What are the tasks confronting us and the ends we must try to attain?

(4) How can we establish trade unions for such tasks and aims?             I think that I have already answered the first question adequately. In the present state of affairs I am convinced that we cannot possibly dispense with the trades unions. On the contrary, they are among the most important institutions in the economic life of the nation. Not only are they important in the sphere of social policy but also, and even more so, in the national political sphere. For when the great masses of a nation see their vital needs satisfied through a just trade unionist movement the stamina of the whole nation in its struggle for existence will be enormously reinforced thereby.

Before everything else, the trades unions are necessary as building stones for the future economic parliament, which will be made up of chambers representing the various professions and occupations.

The second question is also easy to answer. If the trade unionist movement is important, then it is clear that National Socialism ought to take a definite stand on that question, not only theoretically but also in practice. But how? That is more difficult to see clearly.

The National Socialist Movement, which aims at establishing the National Socialist People’s State, must always bear steadfastly in mind the principle that every future institution under that State must be rooted in the movement itself. It is a great mistake to believe that by acquiring possession of supreme political power we can bring about a definite reorganization, suddenly starting from nothing, without the help of a certain reserve stock of men who have been trained beforehand, especially in the spirit of the movement. Here also the principle holds good that the spirit is always more important than the external form which it animates; since this form can be created mechanically and quickly. For instance, the leadership principle may be imposed on an organized political community in a dictatorial way. But this principle can become a living reality only by passing through the stages that are necessary for its own evolution. These stages lead from the smallest cell of the State organism upwards. As its bearers and representatives, the leadership principle must have a body of men who have passed through a process of selection lasting over several years, who have been tempered by the hard realities of life and thus rendered capable of carrying the principle into practical effect.

It is out of the question to think that a scheme for the Constitution of a State can be pulled out of a portfolio at a moment’s notice and ‘introduced’ by imperative orders from above. One may try that kind of thing but the result will always be something that has not sufficient vitality to endure. It will be like a stillborn infant. The idea of it calls to mind the origin of the Weimar Constitution and the attempt to impose on the German people a new Constitution and a new flag, neither of which had any inner relation to the vicissitudes of our people’s history during the last half century.

The National Socialist State must guard against all such experiments. It must grow out of an organization which has already existed for a long time. This organization must possess National Socialist life in itself, so that finally it may be able to establish a National Socialist State that will be a living reality.

As I have already said, the germ cells of this State must lie in the administrative chambers which will represent the various occupations an professions, therefore first of all in the trades unions. If this subsequent vocational representation and the Central Economic Parliament are to be National Socialist institutions, these important germ cells must be vehicles of the National Socialist concept of life. The institutions of the movement are to be brought over into the State; for the State cannot call into existence all of a sudden and as if by magic those institutions which are necessary to its existence, unless it wishes to have institutions that are bound to remain completely lifeless.

Looking at the matter from the highest standpoint, the National Socialist Movement will have to recognize the necessity of adopting its own trade-unionist policy.

It must do this for a further reason, namely because a real National  Socialist education for the employer as well as for the employee, in the spirit of a mutual co-operation within the common framework of the national community, cannot be secured by theoretical instruction, appeals and exhortations, but through the struggles of daily life. In this spirit and through this spirit the movement must educate the several large economic groups and bring them closer to one another under a wider outlook. Without this preparatory work it would be sheer illusion to hope that a real national community can be brought into existence. The great ideal represented by its philosophy of life and for which the movement fights can alone form a general style of thought steadily and slowly. And this style will show that the new state of things rests on foundations that are internally sound and not merely an external facade.

Hence the movement must adopt a positive attitude towards the trade-unionist idea. But it must go further than this. For the enormous number of members and followers of the trade-unionist movement it must provide a practical education which will meet the exigencies of the coming National Socialist State.

The answer to the third question follows from what has been already said.

The National Socialist Trades Union is not an instrument for class warfare, but a representative organ of the various occupations and callings. The National Socialist State recognizes no ‘classes’. But, under the political aspect, it recognizes only citizens with absolutely equal rights and equal obligations corresponding thereto. And, side by side with these, it recognizes subjects of the State who have no political rights whatsoever.             According to the National Socialist concept, it is not the task of the trades union to band together certain men within the national community and thus gradually transform these men into a class, so as to use them in a conflict against other groups similarly organized within the national community. We certainly cannot assign this task to the trades union as such. This was the task assigned to it the moment it became a fighting weapon in the hands of the Marxists. The trades union is not naturally an instrument of class warfare; but the Marxists transformed it into an instrument for use in their own class struggle. They created the economic weapon which the international Jew uses for the purpose of destroying the economic foundations of free and independent national States, for ruining their national industry and trade and thereby enslaving free nations to serve Jewish world-finance, which transcends all State boundaries.

In contradistinction to this, the National Socialist Trades Union must organize definite groups and those who participate in the economic life of the nation and thus enhance the security of the national economic system itself, reinforcing it by the elimination of all those anomalies which ultimately exercise a destructive influence on the social body of the nation, damaging the vital forces of the national community, prejudicing the welfare of the State and, by no means as a last consequence, bringing evil and destruction on economic life itself.

Therefore in the hands of the National Socialist Trades Union the strike is not an instrument for disturbing and dislocating the national production, but for increasing it and making it run smoothly, by fighting against all those annoyances which by reason of their unsocial character hinder efficiency in business and thereby hamper the existence of the whole nation. For individual efficiency stands always in casual relation to the general social and juridical position of the individual in the economic process. Individual efficiency is also the sole root of the conviction that the economic prosperity of the nation must necessarily redound to the benefit of the individual citizen.

The National Socialist employee will have to recognize the fact that the economic prosperity of the nation brings with it his own material happiness.

The National Socialist employer must recognize that the happiness and contentment of his employees are necessary per-requisites for the existence and development of his own economic prosperity.

National Socialist workers and employers are both together the delegates and mandatories of the whole national community. The large measure of personal freedom which is accorded to them for their activities must be explained by the fact that experience has shown that the productive powers of the individual are more enhanced by being accorded a generous measure of freedom than by coercion from above. Moreover, by according this freedom we give free play to the natural process of selection which brings forward the ablest and most capable and most industrious. For the National Socialist Trades Union, therefore, the strike is a means that may, and indeed must, be resorted to as long as there is not a National Socialist State yet. But when that State is established it will, as a matter of course, abolish the mass struggle between the two great groups made up of employers and employees respectively, a struggle which has always resulted in lessening the national production and injuring the national community. In place of this struggle, the National Socialist State will take over the task of caring for and defending the rights of all parties concerned. It will be the duty of the Economic Chamber itself to keep the national economic system in smooth working order and to remove whatever defects or errors it may suffer from. Questions that are now fought over through a quarrel that involves millions of people will then be settled in the Representative Chambers of Trades and Professions and in the Central Economic Parliament. Thus employers and employees will no longer find themselves drawn into a mutual conflict over wages and hours of work, always to the detriment of their mutual interests. But they will solve these problems together on a higher plane, where the welfare of the national community and of the State will be as a shining ideal to throw light on all their negotiations.

Here again, as everywhere else, the inflexible principle must be observed, that the interests of the country must come before party interests.

The task of the National Socialist Trades Union will be to educate and prepare its members to conform to these ideals. That task may be stated as follows: All must work together for the maintenance and security of our people and the People’s State, each one according to the abilities and powers with which Nature has endowed him and which have been developed and trained by the national community.

Our fourth question was: How shall we establish trades unions for such tasks and aims? That is far more difficult to answer.

Generally speaking, it is easier to establish something in new territory than in old territory which already has its established institutions. In a district where there is no existing business of a special character one can easily establish a new business of this character. But it is more difficult if the same kind of enterprise already exists and it is most difficult of all when the conditions are such that only one enterprise of this kind can prosper. For here the promoters of the new enterprise find themselves confronted not only with the problem of introducing their own business but also that of how to bring about the destruction of the other business already existing in the district, so that the new enterprise may be able to exist.

It would be senseless to have a National Socialist Trades Union side by side with other trades unions. For this Trades Union must be thoroughly imbued with a feeling for the ideological nature of its task and of the resulting obligation not to tolerate other similar or hostile institutions. It must also insist that itself alone is necessary, to the exclusion of all the rest. It can come to no arrangement and no compromise with kindred tendencies but must assert its own absolute and exclusive right.

There were two ways which might lead to such a development:

(1) We could establish our Trades Union and then gradually take up the fight against the Marxist International Trades Union.

(2) Or we could enter the Marxist Trades Union and inculcate a new spirit in it, with the idea of transforming it into an instrument in the service of the new ideal.

The first way was not advisable, by reason of the fact that our financial situation was still the cause of much worry to us at that time and our resources were quite slender. The effects of the inflation were steadily spreading and made the particular situation still more difficult for us, because in those years one could scarcely speak of any material help which the trades unions could extend to their members.

From this point of view, there was no reason why the individual worker should pay his dues to the union. Even the Marxist unions then existing were already on the point of collapse until, as the result of Herr Cuno’s enlightened Ruhr policy, millions were suddenly poured into their coffers. This so-called ‘national’ Chancellor of the REICH should go down in history as the Redeemer of the Marxist trades unions.

We could not count on similar financial facilities. And nobody could be induced to enter a new Trades Union which, on account of its financial weakness, could not offer him the slightest material benefit. On the other hand, I felt bound absolutely to guard against the creation of such an organization which would only be a shelter for shirkers of the more or less intellectual type.

At that time the question of personnel played the most important role. I did not have a single man whom I might call upon to carry out this important task. Whoever could have succeeded at that time in overthrowing the Marxist unions to make way for the triumph of the National Socialist corporative idea, which would then take the place of the ruinous class warfare–such a person would be fit to rank with the very greatest men our nation has produced and his bust should be installed in the Valhalla at Regensburg for the admiration of posterity.

But I knew of no person who could qualify for such a pedestal.

In this connection we must not be led astray by the fact that the international trades unions are conducted by men of only mediocre significance, for when those unions were founded there was nothing else of a similar kind already in existence. To-day the National Socialist Movement must fight against a monster organization which has existed for a long time, rests on gigantic foundations and is carefully constructed even in the smallest details. An assailant must always exercise more intelligence than the defender, if he is to overthrow the latter. The Marxist trade-unionist citadel may be governed to-day by mediocre leaders, but it cannot be taken by assault except through the dauntless energy and genius of a superior leader on the other side. If such a leader cannot be found it is futile to struggle with Fate and even more foolish to try to overthrow the existing state of things without being able to construct a better in its place.

Here one must apply the maxim that in life it is often better to allow something to go by the board rather than try to half do it or do it badly, owing to a lack of suitable means.

To this we must add another consideration, which is not at all of a demagogic character. At that time I had, and I still have to-day, a firmly rooted conviction that when one is engaged in a great ideological struggle in the political field it would be a grave mistake to mix up economic questions with this struggle in its earlier stages. This applies particularly to our German people. For if such were to happen in their case the economic struggle would immediately distract the energy necessary for the political fight. Once the people are brought to believe that they can buy a little house with their savings they will devote themselves to the task of increasing their savings and no spare time will be left to them for the political struggle against those who, in one way or another, will one day secure possession of the pennies that have been saved. Instead of participating in the political conflict on behalf of the opinions and convictions which they have been brought to accept they will now go further with their ‘settlement’ idea and in the end they will find themselves for the most part sitting on the ground amidst all the stools.

To-day the National Socialist Movement is at the beginning of its struggle. In great part it must first of all shape and develop its ideals. It must employ every ounce of its energy in the struggle to have its great ideal accepted, and the success of this effort is not conceivable unless the combined energies of the movement be entirely at the service of this struggle.

To-day we have a classical example of how the active strength of a people becomes paralyzed when that people is too much taken up with purely economic problems.

The Revolution which took place in November 1918 was not made by the trades unions, but it was carried out in spite of them. And the people of Germany did not wage any political fight for the future of their country because they thought that the future could be sufficiently secured by constructive work in the economic field.

We must learn a lesson from this experience, because in our case the same thing must happen under the same circumstances. The more the combined strength of our movement is concentrated in the political struggle, the more confidently may we count on being successful along our whole front.              But if we busy ourselves prematurely with trade unionist problems, settlement problems, etc., it will be to the disadvantage of our own cause, taken as a whole. For, though these problems may be important, they cannot be solved in an adequate manner until we have political power in our hand and are able to use it in the service of this idea. Until that day comes these problems can have only a paralyzing effect on the movement. And if it takes them up too soon they will only be a hindrance in the effort to attain its own ideological aims. It may then easily happen that trade unionist considerations will control the political direction of the movement, instead of the ideological aims of the movement directing the way that the trades unions are to take.

The movement and the nation can derive advantage from a National Socialist trade unionist organization only if the latter be so thoroughly inspired by National Socialist ideas that it runs no danger of falling into step behind the Marxist movement. For a National Socialist Trades Union which would consider itself only as a competitor against the Marxist unions would be worse than none. It must declare war against the Marxist Trades Union, not only as an organization but, above all, as an idea. It must declare itself hostile to the idea of class and class warfare and, in place of this, it must declare itself as the defender of the various occupational and professional interests of the German people.

Considered from all these points of view it was not then advisable, nor is it yet advisable, to think of founding our own Trades Union. That seemed clear to me, at least until somebody appeared who was obviously called by fate to solve this particular problem.

Therefore there remained only two possible ways. Either to recommend our own party members to leave the trades unions in which they were enrolled or to remain in them for the moment, with the idea of causing as much destruction in them as possible.

In general, I recommended the latter alternative.

Especially in the year 1922-23 we could easily do that. For, during the period of inflation, the financial advantages which might be reaped from a trades union organization would be negligible, because we could expect to enroll only a few members owing to the undeveloped condition of our movement. The damage which might result from such a policy was all the greater because its bitterest critics and opponents were to be found among the followers of the National Socialist Party.

I had already entirely discountenanced all experiments which were destined from the very beginning to be unsuccessful. I would have considered it criminal to run the risk of depriving a worker of his scant earnings in order to help an organization which, according to my inner conviction, could not promise real advantages to its members.

Should a new political party fade out of existence one day nobody would be injured thereby and some would have profited, but none would have a right to complain. For what each individual contributes to a political movement is given with the idea that it may ultimately come to nothing.

But the man who pays his dues to a trade union has the right to expect some guarantee in return. If this is not done, then the directors of such a trade union are swindlers or at least careless people who ought to be brought to a sense of their responsibilities.

We took all these viewpoints into consideration before making our decision in 1922. Others thought otherwise and founded trades unions.

They upbraided us for being short-sighted and failing to see into the future. But it did not take long for these organizations to disappear and the result was what would have happened in our own case. But the difference was that we should have deceived neither ourselves nor those who believed in us.  

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