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Philip Giraldi

Iran May Be the Only Winner in Iraq

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Intelligence documents reveal how Tehran took advantage of US blundering. The American invasion of Iraq and the overthrow of that nation’s government in 2003 has rightly been described as the greatest foreign policy disaster in the history of the United States. Eight thousand one hundred and seventy five American soldiers, contractors and civilians have died in Iraq since 2003 as well as an estimated 300,000 Iraqis.
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John Brennan's CIA Trump Task Force

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There is considerable evidence that the American system of government may have been victimized by an illegal covert operation organized and executed by the US intelligence and national security community. Former Director of National Intelligence Jim Clapper, former CIA Director John Brennan and former FBI Director Jim Comey appear to have played critical leadership roles in carrying out this conspiracy and they may not have operated on their own.
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Deep State on the National Security Council: Colonel Vindman Is an ‘Expert’ With an Agenda

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The current frenzy to impeach President Donald Trump sometimes in its haste reveals that which could easily be hidden about the operation of the Deep State inside the federal government. Congress is currently obtaining testimony from a parade of witnesses to or participants in what will inevitably be called UkraineGate, an investigation into whether Trump inappropriately sought a political quid pro quo from Ukrainian leaders in exchange for a military assistance package.
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The White House Plan to Strangle Iran

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There is a certain irony in President Donald Trump’s frequently expressed desire to withdraw from the endless wars that have characterized the so-called “global war on terror” initiated by George W. Bush in 2001. The problem is that Trump has expressed such sentiments both when he was running for office and also as recently as last week without actually doing anything to bring about change.
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Killing Julian Assange: Justice Denied When Exposing Official Wrongdoing

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The hideous treatment of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange continues and many observers are citing his case as being symptomatic of developing “police state” tendencies in both the United States and in Europe, where rule of law is being subordinated to political expediency.

Julian Assange was the founder and editor-in-chief of the controversial news and information site WikiLeaks. As the name implies, after 2006 the site became famous, or perhaps notorious, for its publication of materials that have been leaked to it by government officials and other sources who consider the information to be of value to the public but unlikely to be accepted by the mainstream media, which has become increasingly corporatized and timid.

WikiLeaks became known to a global audience back in 2010 when it obtained from US Army enlisted soldier Bradley Manning a large quantity of classified documents relating to the various wars that the United States was fighting in Asia. Some of the material included what might be regarded as war crimes.

WikiLeaks again became front page news over the 2016 presidential election, when the website released the emails of candidate Hillary Clinton and her campaign manager John Podesta. The emails revealed how Clinton and her team collaborated with the Democratic National Committee to ensure that she would be nominated rather that Bernie Sanders. It should be noted that the material released by WikiLeaks was largely documentary and factual in nature, i.e. it was not “fake news.”
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Trump cancels the pullout from Syria then flip-flops, threatens war with Turkey and gives money to terrorists

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The long nightmare in Syria might finally be coming to an end, but not thanks to the United States and the administration of President Donald Trump. Trump’s boast that “this was an outcome created by us, the United States, and nobody else” was as empty as all the other rhetoric coming out of the White House over the past two and a half years.
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Trump and Erdogan Are Alike: Both Are ‘Thin-Skinned’ and Relied on ‘Deplorables’ to Win

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The apparent communications problems that have arisen between US President Donald Trump and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan are basically due to Trump’s failure to understand that Erdogan is essentially his Turkish counterpart in more ways that the title of the office that they both hold. They rose to power in a similar fashion, based on an understanding that there were large numbers of disenchanted essentially conservative voters, and they continue to rule in an unorthodox fashion that combines a high level of personal sensitivity with a tolerance for corruption plus a tendency to come out with brash misstatements.

One does not expect Trump to actually know anything about Turkey and its history, or, for that matter, about the political trajectory of Erdogan, but the American president’s businessman’s belief that his personal relationship with other countries’ leaders is enough to run a foreign policy is nevertheless seriously flawed. Trump has described Erdogan as a “friend” based on several personal meetings and phone calls, though it is very unlikely that the canny politician Erdogan would describe the relationship in the same manner. Trump’s most recent personal letter to the Turkish leader was reportedly thrown into the waste basket without being read.

Istanbul-born Erdogan, unlike Trump, came from a poor family and first became known as a professional soccer player. Also unlike Trump, he was and is deeply religious. He became a ward politician in Istanbul and was subsequently elected Mayor of the city in 1994 as the candidate of the moderately Islamist Welfare Party. Openly espoused religious parties were at that time illegal under the secular constitution imposed by the military in 1982, so he was stripped of his position by a military tribunal, banned from political office, and imprisoned for four months for the crime of “inciting religious hatred.”
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A Call for a Coup Plus a Week Like No Other for Tulsi Gabbard

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There was what might be described as an extraordinary amount of nonsense being promoted by last week’s media. Unfortunately, some of it was quite dangerous. Admiral William McRaven, who commanded the Navy Seals when Osama bin Laden was captured and killed and who has been riding that horse ever since, announced that if Donald Trump continues to fail to provide the type of leadership the country needs, he should be replaced by whatever means are necessary. The op-ed entitled “Our Republic is Under Attack by the President” with the subtitle “If President Trump doesn’t demonstrate the leadership that America needs, then it is time for a new person in the Oval Office” was featured in the New York Times, suggesting that the Gray Lady was providing its newspaper of record seal of approval for what might well be regarded as a call for a military coup.

McRaven’s exact words, after some ringing praise for the military and all its glorious deeds in past wars, were that the soldiers, sailors and marines now must respond because “The America that they believed in was under attack, not from without, but from within.”

McRaven then elaborated that “These men and women, of all political persuasions, have seen the assaults on our institutions: on the intelligence and law enforcement community, the State Department and the press. They have seen our leaders stand beside despots and strongmen, preferring their government narrative to our own. They have seen us abandon our allies and have heard the shouts of betrayal from the battlefield. As I stood on the parade field at Fort Bragg, one retired four-star general, grabbed my arm, shook me and shouted, ‘I don’t like the Democrats, but Trump is destroying the Republic!’”
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Sanctioning Away Free Speech: Americans Meet With Iranians at Their Peril

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The issue of the United States waging what seems to be a global war by way of sanctions rarely surfaces in the western media. The argument being made by the White House is that sanctions are capable of putting maximum pressure on a rogue regime without the necessity of having to go to war and actually kill people, but the reality is that while economic warfare may seem to be more benign than bombing and shooting the reality is that thousands of people die anyway, whether through starvation or inability to obtain medicines. It is often noted that 500,000 Iraqi children died in the 1990s due to sanctions imposed by the Bill Clinton White House and current estimates of deaths in Syria, Iran and Venezuela number in the tens of thousands.

And meanwhile the regimes that are under siege through sanctions do not, in fact, capitulate to American demands even when they are feeling considerable pain. Cuba has been sanctioned by Washington since 1960 and nothing has been accomplished, apart from providing an excuse for the regime to tighten its control over the people. Indeed, one might argue that free trade and travel would have likely succeeded in democratizing Cuba much more quickly than threats coupled with a policy of economic and political isolation.

Apart from their ineffectiveness, the dark side of sanctions is what they do to third parties who get caught up in the conflict. America’s recently imposed total ban on Iranian petroleum exports comes with secondary sanctions that can be initiated on any country that buys the oil, alienating Washington’s few remaining friends and creating universal concern regarding the United States’ long-term intentions.
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