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Hillary Reemerges, Slams 'Dangerous Epidemic' Of Fake News

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Having disappeared from the public scene for almost a month (with the occasional backwood spotting thrown in for dramatic effect), today Hillary Clinton reemerged from a self-imposed social quarantine, and in a exquisitely choreographed Podesta special, addressed the nation from Capitol Hill. What was first and foremost on the mind of person who the "impartial" media declared had a 90 percent chance of being America's next president: was it some intense introspection; perhaps it was some idea of how to reform and fix the imploding Democratic party; or maybe it was her finally accepting responsibility for her actions and her loss?

None of the above.

Instead, the one thing that appears to have preoccupied the former Secretary of State is the proliferation of so-called "fake news", a phenomenon she called an "epidemic." It was not immediately clear if she also lumped in the Washington Post into that bucket: recall that last night, in an editorial note to the WaPo's fake, slanderous story about "Russian Propaganda Fake News", the newspaper effectively distanced itself from its primary source, PropOrNot, which itself has allegedly been exposed as propaganda.

Speaking on Capitol Hill, Clinton said that “the epidemic of malicious fake news and false propaganda that flooded social media over the past year — it’s now clear the so-called fake news can have real-world consequences." Like, perhaps, poring through thousands of emails which the co=opted and captured mainstream press - especially those who had dinner with John Podesta to offer their PR services to the Clinton campaign  - would not touch, revealing the crony and illicit dealings of the Clinton Family foundation, leading to - among other things - Clinton losing the presidency?
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The Horrific Consequences of US Interventionism

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Two seemingly unrelated stories in the New York Times yesterday serve as potent reminders of the deadly and disastrous consequences of US interventionism in the Middle East. The stories involve Iran and Libya.

Referring to Donald Trump’s campaign vow to tear up the nuclear agreement entered into last year between the United States and Iran, Iran’s president, Hassan Rouhani, told an audience at Tehran University, “America cannot influence our determination, this nation’s resistance and its struggle. America is our enemy; we have no doubt about this. The Americans want to put as much pressure on us as they can.” During the talk, the student audience chanted, “Death to America.”

Rouhani is especially chagrined at what he perceives to be a double cross by US officials, who have continued their regime of brutal sanctions against Iran notwithstanding Iran’s signing of the nuclear agreement.

What’s important to realize, however, is that the bad relations between the United States and Iran are rooted in US interventionism, specifically the CIA’s violent coup in 1953, which succeeded in destroying Iran’s experiment with democracy.
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Will Gen. Kelly Re-Militarize The Drug War?

As head of the US Southern Command, Gen. John Kelly was in charge of the US military involvement in the drug war in Central and South America. He blames the liberalization of marijuana in some US states for the ongoing failure of the drug war, even though the drug war has drug on for decades and marijuana decriminalization is a very recent phenomenon. Will the general take his military approach to the drug war to his domestic position as the next Secretary of Homeland Security? We look at the general and his views in today's Liberty Report...
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Requiem for the Obama Administration, Trump Edition

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The problems many are now predicting under the Trump administration did not start on November 8. The near-unrestrained executive power claimed by the Obama administration will be transferred to the president-elect. Here’s what that means.

Torture

Obama did not prosecute, fire, or discipline anyone for torturing people on behalf of the people of the United States. He did not hold any truth commissions, and ensured almost all of the government documents on the torture program remain classified. He did not prosecute the CIA official who willfully destroyed video tapes of the torture scenes. He has not specifically disavowed secret prisons and renditions,just suspended their use.

As with the continued hunting down of Nazis some 70 years after their evil acts, the message that individual responsibility exists must stalk those who would do evil on behalf of a government. “I was only following orders” is not a defense against inhuman acts. The purpose of tracking down the guilty is less to punish and more to discourage the next person from doing evil; the purpose is to morally immunize a nation-state.
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After Libya, NATO Looks To Montenegro

NATO's desperate search for a purpose after the fall of the Soviet Union has left a swath of destruction through places like Libya, which it "liberated" nearly six years ago. Now NATO wants to take in tiny Montenegro, a corrupt, poor, Balkan statelet with a total of 2,000 troops. The reason? To further provoke Russia and to open the door to more NATO expansion perhaps to Georgia, Moldova, and even Ukraine. This week the US Senate will vote on Montenegro's NATO membership. Will president-elect Trump ask them to hold off on this ill-advised move? We discuss in today's Liberty Report...
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US Strikes on Syrian Troops: Report Data Contradicts 'Mistake' Claims

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The summary report on an investigation into US and allied air strikes on Syrian government troops has revealed irregularities in decision-making consistent with a deliberate targeting of Syrian forces.

The report, released by US Central Command on 29 November, shows that senior US Air Force officers at the Combined Air Operations Center (CAOC) at al-Udeid Airbase in Qatar, who were responsible for the decision to carry out the September airstrike at Deir Ezzor:

misled the Russians about where the US intended to strike so Russia could not warn that it was targeting Syrian troops

ignored information and intelligence analysis warning that the positions to be struck were Syrian government rather than Islamic State

shifted abruptly from a deliberate targeting process to an immediate strike in violation of normal Air Force procedures

Last week Brig. Gen. Richard Coe, the lead US official on the investigating team, told reporters that US air strikes in Deir Ezzor on 17 September, which killed at least 62 - and possibly more than 100 - Syrian army troops, was the unintentional result of “human error.”
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Gen. Mattis: Can Trump Leash His Pentagon 'Mad Dog'?

Gen. James "Mad Dog" Mattis will make his way from the board of directors of major defense contractor General Dynamics back to the Pentagon as Defense Secretary under incoming president Donald Trump. Like his predecessor, current Defense Secretary Ashton Carter, Mattis comes by way of the military-industrial complex. Unlike Carter he was a four star general in the US Marine Corps. Asked about the three biggest threats to the US, Gen. Mattis responded, "Iran, Iran, Iran." He is convinced that Iran and ISIS are in league together, a position not borne out by facts. Should we be concerned over a "mad dog" in charge of the Pentagon? More in today's Liberty Report...
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PropOrNot Doesn’t Identify Russian Propaganda

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PropOrNot is the outfit that produced “The List” of 200 “Russian propaganda outlets.” The strange thing is that their published materials do not identify and prove a single vital case of Russian propaganda that actually had a vital effect on a matter of vital foreign policy or on a matter of momentous domestic concern.

What do I mean by a vital case with a vital effect on a vital matter? An example is the momentous propaganda campaign running many months and conducted by the Bush administration that had a powerful impact on public opinion in America and provided a rationale for the consequential aggression against Iraq in March, 2003. As a step toward documenting that case in detail, I wrote a lengthy article in 2005: How Did Saddam Hussein Become a Grave Threat? This article, by no means the first or last word on this subject and surely not the most complete word, shows the genesis of the campaign, its probable motivations, identifies some of its transmission mechanisms, highlights its themes and generally provides a timeline of its development, start to finish. Anyone should be able to understand the identification of the propaganda, the campaign and its aims.

PropOrNot has so far not documented even a single case like this. They haven’t shown that Russian sources instigated a consequential campaign of false or misleading statements that had a vital aim and a vital effect on a vital issue. PropOrNot claims that Russia originated fake news and that 200 websites propagated this fake news and that this influenced the US election. They have made this claim in general terms.
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Trump's Taiwan Call - What's The Motive?

The telephone call between president-elect Donald Trump and Taiwan president Tsai Ing-wen created quite a buzz over the weekend. It appears that it was not a spontaneous mutual congratulations call, as first reported, but rather a project long in the works among Trump's more China-hawkish advisors. If the message to China over the unprecedented telephone call was not clear, Trump's Tweetstorm afterward left little for the imagination. The incoming administration appears to intend to confront China. How strongly? To what end? To whose benefit? We discuss in today's Liberty Report...
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Trump’s Promised ‘New Foreign Policy’ Must Abandon Regime Change for Iran

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President-elect Donald Trump told a Cincinnati audience this week that he intends to make some big changes in US foreign policy. During his “thank you” tour in the midwest, Trump had this to say:
We will pursue a new foreign policy that finally learns from the mistakes of the past. We will stop looking to topple regimes and overthrow governments. …In our dealings with other countries we will seek shared interests wherever possible...”
If this is really to be President Trump’s foreign policy, it would be a welcome change from the destructive path pursued by the two previous administrations. Such a foreign policy would go a long way toward making us safer and more prosperous, as we would greatly reduce the possibility of a “blowback” attack from abroad, and we would save untold billions with a foreign policy of restraint.
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