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The War on America’s Military Veterans, Waged with SWAT Teams, Surveillance and Neglect

Obamavets

Just in time for Memorial Day, we’re once again being treated to a generous serving of praise and grandstanding by politicians and corporations eager to go on record as being supportive of our veterans. Patriotic platitudes aside, however, America has done a deplorable job of caring for her veterans. We erect monuments for those who die while serving in the military, yet for those who return home, there’s little honor to be found.

Despite the fact that the U.S. boasts more than 23 million veterans who have served in World War II through Korea, Vietnam, the Gulf War, Iraq and Afghanistan, the plight of veterans today is deplorable, with large numbers of them impoverished, unemployed, traumatized mentally and physically, struggling with depression, thoughts of suicide, and marital stress, homeless (a third of all homeless Americans are veterans), subjected to sub-par treatment at clinics and hospitals, and left to molder while their paperwork piles up within Veterans Administration (VA) offices.

According to the National Veterans Foundation, the VA has had a backlog of as many as 1.2 million unprocessed claims in recent years, in addition to the fraud and mismanagement within the VA and its network of offices across the country, and secret lists containing thousands of names of veterans who were forced to wait months just to see a doctor.
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Kudos to Ecuador’s President Correa

Usaidmoney

Good for Ecuador’s President Rafael Correa for kicking USAID out of his country. If only every nation in the world would do that. While part of USAID’s activities ostensibly relate to helping “the poor,” that’s just a cover to disguise the real mission of the agency: to act in tandem with the CIA to engage in political activity designed to effect regime change in foreign countries.

To Correa’s credit, USAID is not the only U.S. agency he’s evicted from Ecuador. He’s also kicked the DEA out of the country. Moreover, he forced the Pentagon to close down one of its imperialist bases in Ecuador and depart the country.

Why would the CIA and USAID want to oust Correa from office? Because he’s a socialist, one who has established close ties to Cuba and Venezuela.

Do you recall when the CIA and the Pentagon were claiming that if Latin American countries went communist or socialist, the United States would be in danger of falling to the communists? That’s what the Cold War was all about — engendering deep fear of communists and communism within the American people in order to justify ever-growing budgets for the military, military-industrial complex, and CIA — i.e., the old Cold War national-security state apparatus.
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The Sino-Russian Hydrocarbon Axis Grows Up

Eight years ago, in the pages of The National Interest, Flynt Leverett and Pierre Noël identified a “new axis of oil”—a “shifting coalition of both energy exporting and energy importing states centered in ongoing Sino-Russian collaboration”—that was emerging as an increasingly important counterweight to the United States on a widening range of international issues.  While, at the time, Russian oil and gas exports to China were negligible, Leverett and Noël projected that Russian hydrocarbons would become “a major factor buttressing closer Sino-Russian strategic collaboration” in the future.

Western analysts have long been skeptical of the prospects for sustained Sino-Russian cooperation—but over the last eight years, the new axis of oil has become undeniable market and geopolitical reality.  Russia is now one of China’s top three oil suppliers (with Saudi Arabia and Angola) and is set to grow its oil exports to China significantly in coming years.
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Just Imagine... If Russia Had Toppled the Canadian Government

Donetskflag

Just imagine if the democratically-elected government of Canada had been toppled in a Russian-financed coup, in which far-right extremists and neo-Nazis played a prominent role.

That the new unelected 'government' in Ottawa cancelled the law giving the French language official status, appointed a billionaire oligarch to run Quebec and signed an association agreement with a Russian-led trade bloc.

Just imagine…

If Russia had spent $5 billion on regime change in Canada and then a leading Canadian energy firm had appointed to its board of directors the son of a top Russian government politician.

Just imagine…

If the Syrian government had hosted a meeting in Damascus of the "Friends of Britain" — a group of countries who supported the violent overthrow of David Cameron's government.
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Militarist Bunkum: July 4 and the Lies of the Empire

Us Flag And Soldiers

Did you know that 85 to 90 percent of war’s casualties are non-combatant civilians? That is the conclusion reached by a nine-person research team in the June 2014 issue of the American Journal of Public Health. The deaths of soldiers who are fighting the war are a small part of the human and economic cost. Clearly, wars do not protect the lives of civilians. The notion that soldiers are dying for us is false. Non-combatants are the main victims of war.

Keep that in mind for July 4th, which is arriving in six weeks.

July 4th is America’s most important national holiday celebrating American independence from Great Britain. On July 4th, 1776, America’s Founding Fathers declared that the Thirteen Colonies were no longer colonies but an independent country in which the Rights of Englishmen would prevail for all citizens and not only for King George’s administrators. (Actually, the Second Continental Congress voted in favor of independence on July 2, and historians debate whether the Declaration of Independence was signed on July 4 or August 2.)

In this American assertion of self-determination citizens of Great Britain were not allowed to vote. Therefore, according to Washington’s position on the votes in Crimea and in eastern Ukraine — the former Russian territories of Donetsk and Luhansk — America’s Declaration of Independence was “illegitimate and illegal.”
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The Chicoms Are Coming! Reflections On The Folly Of The War On Vietnam And Its Progeny

China Vietnam

Back in the spring of 1968 I also got an invitation to evacuate. It was from Secretary of Defense, Robert McNamara, suggesting I evacuate my cushy life as a student in East Lansing, Michigan to join his crusade to stop the “chicoms” from annexing Vietnam.

According to McNamara, Chairman Mao and Uncle Ho were joined at the hip in a crusade to turn all of Southeast Asia “red”.  Unless forcefully deterred with American guns and blood, the chicoms would come pouring across the Vietnamese border any day; it would be the Yalu river crossing all over again.

As it turns out,  right about then 40 million people were starving in the villages of China due to the massive crop failures brought on by Mao’s earlier “Great Leap Forward”.  During that ingenuous project,  hundreds of millions of Chinese peasants had been instructed to become overnight industrialists by building tiny steel furnaces in their backyards. Unfortunately,  the peasants had gotten so enthused by the Great Helmsman’s vision of turning the Yellow River Valley into the Ruhr overnight that they had melted their hoes and rakes for scrap!
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Tax Reform is Useless Without Spending Reform

Recently, Republican leaders in Congress unveiled a "tax reform" plan that they claimed would provide the American people with a simpler, fairer, and more efficient tax system. While this plan does lower some tax rates and contains some other changes that may make next April a little less painful for Americans, there is little in it to excite supporters of liberty.

Taxes may even increase under this plan for some Americans, as it eliminates some of those tax deductions labeled “loopholes.” When I served in Congress I opposed bills that “closed loopholes” because closing loopholes is just a fancy way of saying raising taxes. Anything that leaves more money in the hands of the people is beneficial to both liberty and economic efficiency.
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Why Won't Kerry Leave Syria Alone?

Kerry Syria

US Secretary of State John Kerry seems to be on a personal mission to draw the US into an invasion of Syria. At the least, he remains determined to continue backing the rebellion against the Syrian government until the country is completely destroyed. 

Meeting yesterday in London, the self-styled "Friends of Syria," including, in addition to the US and UK, such model democracies as Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey, determined to increase assistance to those who for three years have fought to overthrow the Syrian government. 

Kerry took the opportunity at the meeting to again accuse the Syrian government of using chemical weapons, apparently not at all chastened by his fraudulent claims to the same effect last year. "Raw data" suggests the Syrian government used chlorine gas, Kerry claimed this time. Very raw, no doubt.

Meanwhile, US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said on the same day that, “We’ve not seen any evidence” of additional chemical attacks. It seems that the US administration is at war with itself, with Kerry seeming to go rogue at every opportunity.
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Ron Paul on Boom/Bust: US Interventionism Always Leads to Trouble

Ron Paul appeared on RT's Boom/Bust program to explain his foreign policy philosophy and his strong opposition to those who would involve the US government in overseas interventions. 

Whether it is the Middle East, Northern Africa or Ukraine, he said, his aim is "to promote trade and promote friendship, promote travel, at the same time not be involved in trying to determine what is best for the other people." Read the interview here.
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No Nation Left Un-Invaded: Sen. McCain Would Put US Military Into Nigeria In 'A New York Minute'

Mccaincountryfirst

Nigeria has been a failed state of corruption, outlawry, civil war and unspeakable violence and cruelty for decades. Literally millions have been starved, maimed and butchered owing to ethnic, tribal and religious clashes. And billions more have been stolen from the nation’s long-suffering people by government officials, the military and oppositionists alike in what is surely the most corrupt nation on earth.

In this context, the latest episode involving the kidnapped school girls is just another tragic eruption of the anarchy which is Nigeria. But it is also none of our business, period. Parachuting American forces into this chaos would be an act of sheer madness. Yet that’s exactly what Senator McCain is loudly proclaiming he would do if he were President.

Below are his exact words, and they bristle with imperial arrogance. To be charitable, this nonsense might be dismissed as the ravings of an old man who has gone off his meds.

But I think not. Washington has become an Imperial City and looks upon the rest of the world as provinces to be managed and pacified by American dollars, diplomacy, legionnaires and drones. Senator McCain is simply crude enough to express this  deplorable beltway ethos baldly.
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