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Free Speech, RIP: A Relic of the American Past

Free Speech

Living in a representative republic means that each person has the right to take a stand for what they think is right, whether that means marching outside the halls of government, wearing clothing with provocative statements, or simply holding up a sign. That’s what the First Amendment is supposed to be about.

Unfortunately, as I show in my book A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American  Police State, through a series of carefully crafted legislative steps and politically expedient court rulings, government officials have managed to disembowel this fundamental freedom, rendering it with little more meaning than the right to file a lawsuit against government officials. In fact, if the court rulings handed down in the last week of February 2014 are anything to go by, the First Amendment has, for all intents and purposes, become an exercise in futility.

On February 26, the U.S. Supreme Court in a 9-0 ruling, held that anti-nuclear activist John Denis Apel could be prosecuted for staging a protest on a public road at an Air Force base, free speech claims notwithstanding, because the public road is technically government property.
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Hagel's 'Defense Cuts' Are Smoke And Mirrors

Last week Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel proposed an additional 40,000 reduction in active duty US Army personnel, down to 450,000 soldiers. As US troops are being withdrawn from the recent wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, it might make sense to reduce not only the active duty military but the entire military budget. However, from the interventionists’ reaction to Hagel’s announcement you might think President Obama announced he was shutting down the Pentagon!
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'NATO Countries Unleashed Nationalism And Fear in Ukraine'

RPI academic advisor, Prof. Mark Almond, explains how the US and its NATO allies are suddenly realizing that they have unleashed a force in western Ukraine that is highly destabliizing, with the repeal of the language law and the repeal of the law banning Nazi symbols being the early legislation passed by the US-backed group in control in Kiev. Panic is setting in the West.
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The Crimea Will Soon Be Back in Russia

Crimearus

It is becoming clear that the Nuland/neocon/NED campaign against Russia in Ukraine was probably a covert action intended to punish Russia for not supporting US/Israeli/Saudi and Turkish policy in Syria and to some extent with regard to Iran. 

I have no specific knowledge of US actions in this but "back azimuths" run into events and actors make the true story obvious. Was there to be a second phase of the spread of revolution, a phase aimed at Russia itself?  We will probably never know.

In any case Putin has called Obama's bluff.  You should not threaten if you are not prepared to act. The Russian Strategic Missile Forces have the ability to end civilization in North America. The same is true with regard to the capabilities of US missile forces if they were applied to the Eurasian land mass.
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Obama Draws Red Lines As World Lurches Toward War

Obama Ukraine

President Obama delivered a brief press statement today in which he stated that rumors about Russian military activity in Crimea were "deeply disturbing" to the United States. He then drew dangerous red lines that threaten a serious international military conflict.

What is the backdrop to the president's warning?

Post-coup Kiev is not Ukraine -- even the media has noted that Ukraine is deeply divided -- and therefore it should have been expected that regions of Ukraine with a vast majority of Russians and Russian speakers would be less enthusiastic over the West's picks to head up the country.
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Judge Andrew Napolitano: Supreme Court Makes 'U-Turn' Away from Protecting Privacy

Speaking this morning on Fox News, Judge Andrew Napolitano, an RPI Advisory Board member, explains the Unites States Supreme Court’s Fernandez v. California decision this week that gives police greater leeway to search homes without a warrant. Napolitano describes the decision as a “U-turn” away from privacy protection that bodes badly for future cases before the court, including cases concerning the National Security Agency and the US government’s mass spying program:
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‘West Plays With Fire to Drive the Russian Naval Base Out of Crimea’

Ukraine Crimea Protest

Crimea’s ethnic composition and Western policy towards Ukraine could create a Kosovo-like scenario where the majority of Russian speaking residents would claim independence which could lead to violence on the ground, Oxford historian Mark Almond told RT.


RT: If the EU and the US are concerned about doing what people on the Maidan want, why are they ignoring what people in Crimea want?

Mark Almond: Well one would have thought so if you’re going to listen to the crowd on the street on the square and there are many squares where there’re crowds including Simferopol and Sevastopol. The basic problem of course is what the Americans, particularly the lead military power in NATO want, is to eventually ease the Russian navy out of its base, out of its lease in Sevastopol in the Crimea. And so of course the fact that the great majority of people in Crimea not only 60 per cent that are actually Russian but many of the rest who speak Russian as their everyday language is something that the EU and NATO countries want to ignore.

Of course if you have any kind of push to create a crisis, I’m afraid our democratic basis as in Kosovo where the great majority, where the great majority of Albanians wanted to be independent from Serbia, you would create a Kosovo crisis in Crimea. But of course strangely enough Washington and Brussels suddenly aren’t terribly interested in this. I myself think that creating a crisis is not a good idea, but nonetheless they seem to be bent on pushing to increase tension between people on the Peninsula. And of course there is a risk of violence against either ethnic Russians, civilians that are there or against the sailors and soldiers on the base.
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Ukraine's Fractured Future

A month before violence ripped Ukraine apart, RPI contributor Christine Stone provided an in-depth analysis of Ukraine's precarious position, accurately forecasting the disaster that was to come.
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Leave Ukraine Alone!

Last week Ukraine saw its worst violence since the break-up of the Soviet Union over 20 years ago. Protesters occupying the main square in the capitol city, Kiev, clashed with police leaving many protesters and police dead and many more wounded. It is an ongoing tragedy and it looks like there is no end in sight.

The current conflict stems from a divide between western Ukraine, which seeks a closer association with the European Union, and the eastern part of the country, which has closer historic ties to Russia.
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