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A Nation That Doesn’t Know War: America Celebrates Memorial Day

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Wednesday, May 30th, was Memorial Day in the United States. The commemoration began in 1868 shortly after the American Civil War, when townsmen in several communities came together to decorate the graves of the fallen on the last Monday in May. The practice began in the northern states but soon spread to the south and the annual remembrance ceremony soon took on the name Decoration Day. As wars proliferated in the twentieth century the commemoration eventually lost its association with the Civil War and was increasingly referred to nationally as Memorial Day, eventually becoming a federal holiday.

The American Civil war killed 655,000 soldiers, more than all other US wars before or since combined. It was the first modern war in that it relied on railroads and steamships. The North also destroyed the livelihoods of and deliberately starved civilian populations to reduce the South’s will to resist. It was a war fought on US soil and experienced first hand by the American people.

Today Memorial Day has largely lost its connection with dead soldiers and is instead best noted for being regarded as the first day of summer for recreational purposes. Beaches open up, the lifeguards come out and the smell of barbecued meat fills the air. The declining number of veterans of World War 2, Korea and Vietnam work hard to remember the dead but there is little interest from a public that has become increasingly detached from its non-conscripted professional army.
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Propaganda Killing Kills Propaganda - First The Skripals, Now Arkady Babchenko Come Back From The Dead

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An "enemy of Putin" is attacked. Authorities immediately raise accusations against Russia and the Kremlin. Public condemnation follows. There are calls to sanction Russia.

But the information is murky. The details don't make sense. Critical questions follow. After the while the "dead" come back from death.

The above was the script followed in the Skripal affair. The "deadly nerve agent - of a kind developed by Russia-" did not kill at all. Now a similar case happened.
Arkady Babchenko: Ukraine blames Russia for journalist murder - BBC: Ukraine's Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman has accused Russia of being behind the killing in Kiev of the Russian journalist Arkady Babchenko. 

'I am confident that the Russian totalitarian machine did not forgive him his honesty and principled stance,' the prime minister posted on Facebook.

A Kremlin critic, Babchenko was gunned down outside his apartment on Tuesday.

Anti-Putin Russian journalist Arkady Babchenko shot dead in Ukraine capital - Telegraph

Russia denies involvement in murder of journalist and Kremlin critic Arkady Babchenko- Telegraph 

Prominent Russian journalist who criticized Kremlin shot dead in Kiev - CNBC
There were hundreds such headlines since yesterday, all directly or indirectly accusing Russia, the Kremlin or Putin.
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Ron Paul: On War, Gold, and My Years in Congress

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Photo: Gage Skidmore

JEFF DEIST: What makes you optimistic, what makes you pessimistic about what you see in the US?

RON PAUL: Well, if I look at the big picture including a long span of time, I would say conditions aren’t that bad, even though I often talk about all the bad things I anticipate and how it could get worse in terms of the economy and foreign policy.
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US Commander in Europe: We Need More Troops to Fight The Russians

US Commander of the Europe Command, Gen. Curtis M. Scaparrotti, has called for thousands more US troops to "deter Russian aggression" in Europe. He has even suggested that the US troops should be pulled off of counter-terrorism duty and sent to Europe. Meanwhile, the Pentagon announced a massive shipment of military equipment to Europe, including tanks and other tracked vehicles. Do US military officials really believe that Russia is about to invade western Europe? Are we back in the 1940s? Or is Washington's military-industrial complex looking for new ways to justify an ever-expanding military budget? Tune in to today's Liberty Report...
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In Korea, Kim And Moon Embrace - No Need For Outsiders?

It looks like the neocons may not succeed with their plot to blow up the Trump/Kim meeting next month. With Trump canceling the meeting at the end of last week, the North and South Korean leaders held an impromptu meeting on the border to look for a path ahead toward peace. President Trump has taken notice and plans are again underway for the historic meeting. Are neocons sidelined for now? Tune in to today's Liberty Report...
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After pointlessly groping countless Americans, the TSA is keeping a secret watchlist of those who fight back

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"I need a witness!" exclaimed the security screener at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. Because I had forgotten to remove my belt before going through a scanner, he explained, I must undergo an "enhanced patdown." I told him that if he jammed his hand into my groin, I'd file a formal complaint. So he summoned his supervisor to keep an eye on the proceedings.

I thought of this exchange last week when the New York Times revealed that the Transportation Security Administration has created a secret watchlist for troublesome passengers. The TSA justified the list by saying that its screeners were assaulted 34 times last year, but did not release any details about the alleged assaults.

Naturally, the TSA's official definition of troublemaking goes well beyond punching its officers. According to a confidential memo, any behavior that is "offensive and without legal justification" can land a traveler on the list, as can any "challenges to the safe and effective completion of screening." Anyone who has ever "loitered" near a checkpoint could also make the list. So could any woman who pushes a screener's hands away from her breasts.
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MEK’s Money Sure Can’t Buy Love (But it can buy a lot of politicians)

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Iran’s radical Marxist cult Mohajedeen e Khalq, better known by its acronym MEK, is somewhat reminiscent of the Israel Lobby’s American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) in that it operates somewhat in the shadows and is nevertheless able to punch well beyond its weight by manipulating politicians and understanding how American government functions on its dark side. MEK promotes itself by openly supporting a very popular hardline policy of “democratic opposition” advocating “regime change” for Iran while also successfully selling its reform credentials, i.e. that it is no longer a terrorist group. This latter effort apparently convinced then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on 2013 as she and President Barack responded to the group’s affability campaign by delisting MEK from the government list of terrorist organizations.

This shift in attitude towards MEK was a result of several factors. First, everyone in Washington and the Establishment hates Iran. And second, the Executive Order 13224, which designates Iran’s Revolutionary Guards as a terrorist organization, ipso facto defines any group fighting against it as one of the good guys, justifying the change

MEK is best described as a cult rather than as a political movement because of its internal discipline. Its members are, according to the testimony of those who have somehow escaped, subjected to considerable indoctrination best described as brainwashing. Though not exactly imprisoned, adherents are kept isolated and separated insofar as possible and cannot contact their families. Their possessions are collectivized so they have no money or other resources. If they are in contravention of the numerous rules that guide the organization they are punished, including physically, and there are reports of members being executed for trying to escape.
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Memorial Day is Based on a Lie

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Today, Memorial Day, Americans across the land will hear the same message: that US soldiers who have died in America’s foreign wars and foreign interventions have done so in the defense of our rights and freedoms. It is a message that will be heard in sporting events, memorial services, airports, churches, and everywhere else that Memorial Day is being commemorated.

There is one big thing wrong, however. It’s a lie. None of those soldiers died protecting our rights and freedoms. That’s because our rights and freedoms were never being threatened by the enemy forces that killed those soldiers.

Let’s work our way backwards.

Syria. The Syrian government has never invaded the United States and tried to take away our rights and freedoms. Therefore, any US soldier who has died in Syria was not killed protecting our rights and freedoms.

Niger. The Niger government has never invaded the United States and tried to take away our freedoms. Therefore, any US soldier who has died in Niger was not killed protecting our rights and freedoms.

Iraq. The Iraq government never invaded the United States and tried to take away our rights and freedoms. Therefore, any US soldier who has died in Iraq was not killed protecting our rights and freedoms.
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America’s Incredible Shrinking Influence

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Just two weeks after President Trump pulled the US from the Iran nuclear agreement, his Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, issued 12 demands to Iran that could never be satisfied. Pompeo knew his demands would be impossible to meet. They were designed that way. Just like Austria-Hungary’s ultimatum to Serbia in July, 1914, that led to the beginning of World War I. And just like the impossible demands made of Milosevic in 1999 and of Saddam Hussein in 1991 and 2003, and so many other times when Washington wanted war. These impossible demands are tools of war rather than steps toward peace.
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Syria - US Moves To Protect Al-Qaeda And ISIS in Daraa

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The Syrian government and its Russian ally plan to clean up the southwest region of Syria around the city of Daraa. The move should open the M5 highway, Syria's lifeline, between Damascus and Jordan and secure the border with Jordan as well as the demarcation line with the Israel occupied Golan Heights. The operation was supposed to start in a day or two, but the US has now threatened to intervene.
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