Ron Paul Institute for Peace And Prosperity All Blogs 2017 http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/rss.aspx?blogid=5 Tue, 22 Aug 2017 04:00:00 GMT Tue, 22 Aug 2017 10:03:15 GMT The Afghanistan Speech President Trump Should Deliver Tonight Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/21/the-afghanistan-speech-president-trump-should-deliver-tonight/ expected to deliver a speech tonight in which he announces the deployment of more United States troops to Afghanistan to take part in America’s longest war. Over at The Intercept today Jon Schwarz and Robert Mackey document many of Trump’s pronouncements over the last few years, largely on Twitter, opposing continuation of the war and proposing that the US troops leave Afghanistan. Included in Schwarz and Mackey’s article is a video Trump made in March of 2012 in which Trump emphatically declared “Afghanistan is a total and complete disaster.”

Trump further stated in the video:
Let’s get with it. Get out of Afghanistan. We’ve wasted billions and billions of dollars and, more importantly, thousands and thousands of lives, not to mention all of these young men and young women that come home and they really have problems.
It would be refreshing to see Trump stand up to the generals surrounding him, put down his prepared speech, and make a statement like this one he made five years back. But, don’t count on it happening.

Watch Trump’s 2012 video here:



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http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/21/the-afghanistan-speech-president-trump-should-deliver-tonight/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/21/the-afghanistan-speech-president-trump-should-deliver-tonight/ Mon, 21 Aug 2017 22:00:38 GMT
Trump's Afghanistan Strategy: What To Expect. With Jacob Hornberger Daniel McAdams http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/21/trumps-afghanistan-strategy-what-to-expect-with-jacob-hornberger/
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http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/21/trumps-afghanistan-strategy-what-to-expect-with-jacob-hornberger/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/21/trumps-afghanistan-strategy-what-to-expect-with-jacob-hornberger/ Mon, 21 Aug 2017 17:54:45 GMT
Lawrence Wilkerson Explains the Danger of Trump Handing War Decisions over to Pentagon Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/21/lawrence-wilkerson-explains-the-danger-of-trump-handing-war-decisions-over-to-pentagon/ significantly decreasing presidential control over the military’s war activities.

Responding to Maté’s comment that from Trump’s January inauguration through this month, “Trump has dropped more than 20,000 bombs, about 80% of what President Obama dropped in all of 2016,” Wilkerson, who was chief of staff for Secretary of State Colin Powell and now teaches at the College of William & Mary, advises that Trump removing presidential restraint and oversight over military actions overseas means more destruction will occur to advance purposes far removed from protecting Americans — to benefit armaments manufacturers and advance training, for example.

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Wilkerson explains:
First, Aaron, we have to understand that Trump is not in control of this. Trump is not dropping these bombs. I appreciate your saying that in that way, and I realize it was metaphoric, but in a real sense, he is not. Not only is he not in those airplanes, he has given the war zones to the Pentagon. So what we're seeing is the Pentagon taking ultimate advantage of this president's not really caring about the details of what they're doing.

Any time you turn the United States military loose — believe me, I was there for 31 years — and you tell them they've got carte blanche, they are gonna drop bombs until the cows come home. They know that their bread is buttered with Raytheon and Lockheed Martin and other makers of these armaments, and they know that in order to keep a good, warm production base and a relationship with these defense contractors, that they gotta drop a lot of bombs and shoot a lot of bullets.

That's what the military does. They're training their pilots; they're testing their aviation equipment, their AWACS control and so forth. They're salivating over doing this, not to put too fine a point on it. So you let the Pentagon be in charge, and the Pentagon is gonna run, and run, and run, and that's essentially what's happening. I daresay that many of the bombs aren't really dropping on feasible targets. They're just dropping to be dropped or to train or whatever.
Watch Wilkerson’s complete interview here:



Wilkerson is an Academic Board member for the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/21/lawrence-wilkerson-explains-the-danger-of-trump-handing-war-decisions-over-to-pentagon/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/21/lawrence-wilkerson-explains-the-danger-of-trump-handing-war-decisions-over-to-pentagon/ Mon, 21 Aug 2017 13:59:11 GMT
White House Continues to Talk Up ‘Preventative War’ Against North Korea Jason Ditz http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/21/white-house-continues-to-talk-up-preventative-war-against-north-korea/

While there has been a concerted effort from some members of the Trump Administration to downplay the risk of an imminent nuclear war with North Korea, the possibility of such a conflict is still palpable, with White House officials openly talking about launch a “preventative war” to resolve the situation.

National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster is seen as one of the leading advocates of this idea, which seeks to avoid the question of how much of a threat North Korea will pose in the future by just attacking them outright now, consequences be damned.

But this position also fits neatly into President Trump’s own “fire and fury” narrative, and Trump has repeatedly given the impression in recent weeks that he considers attacking North Korea out of the blue a viable option, albeit one of many that are under consideration.

South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in has tried to reject this idea, insisting South Korea has an inherent right to “veto” any US war against North Korea. Yet Defense Secretary James Mattis and other US officials have consistently dodged that question since Moon made the claim, and are mostly couching the war as about the US, as opposed to defending South Korea.

This casts a big shadow over the new US military exercises in South Korea this week, with North Korea openly warning that they are watching for any reckless escalation during the operation, and that they believe the war could quickly go nuclear if the exercise turned into “actual fighting.”

Such a US sneak attack under the guise of military drills would likely be condemned region-wide, but the even bigger problem is that, no matter how the US decides to start this war, doing so will have massive fallout for the region, and particularly for South Korea.

Reprinted with permission from Antiwar.com.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/21/white-house-continues-to-talk-up-preventative-war-against-north-korea/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/21/white-house-continues-to-talk-up-preventative-war-against-north-korea/ Mon, 21 Aug 2017 12:55:27 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Racism, Venezuela, Saving Animals, Yemen Cholera, Roy Moore Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/17/five-minutes-five-issues-racism-venezuela-saving-animals-yemen-cholera-roy-moore/ A new episode of Five Minutes Five Issues posted on Thursday. You can listen to it, and read a transcript, below. You can also find previous episodes of the show at Stitcher, iTunes, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

Enough with all the complaints that United States President Donald Trump has not denounced racism sufficiently. What a president should do is stand up for the Constitution and ensure the government does not violate individual rights. One of those rights is the right to be racist.

Issue two.

In last week’s episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, while discussing President Trump’s declaration that he may use a “military option” against the Venezuela government, I said, “Nobody is even suggesting Venezuela poses any threat to America.”

Then, this week, two “somebodies” from the Trump administration did suggest it.

In a joint press conference with the president of Columbia, US Vice President Mice Pence said this:

A failed state in Venezuela will drive more illegal drug trafficking, with its murderous criminal consequences, radiating outward. A failed state in Venezuela will drive more illegal migration, compromising our borders, damaging our economies. And ultimately, a failed state in Venezuela will endanger the wellbeing of all who call this hemisphere home.

Also, when host Chris Wallace asked at Fox News why a “civil war” or “terrible situation” in Venezuela is “our problem” and could justify US military intervention, US Central Intelligence Agency Director Mike Pompeo gave the following answer:

Oh, look, Venezuela could very much become a risk to the United States of America. The Cubans are there. The Russians are there. The Iranians, Hezbollah are there.

This is something that has a risk of getting to a very, very bad place. And so, America needs to take this very seriously.

Pence and Pompeo’s statements are reminiscent of the lead up to the 2003 US invasion of Iraq, when George W. Bush administration officials ran from microphone to microphone to promote fear of the Iraq government and scare Americans into supporting war.

Issue three.

You have likely read some of Ron Paul Institute Academic Board Member Eric Margolis’ informative articles regarding conflicts and politics around the world.

Here is something you may not know about Margolis. Allan Hall reported at the Daily Mail that Margolis was the major financial backer for saving this month “[t]hree lions, two tigers, two Asian black bears, two Husky dogs, and two hyenas.” The animals had experienced dire conditions at an Aleppo, Syria zoo devastated in the country’s ongoing war.

Hall reports that, after many other animals had died in the zoo, these surviving animals have made it to a sanctuary in Jordan.

Issue four.

In a Monday press release, the World Health Organization (WHO) said there have been half a million suspected cholera cases in Yemen this year. The WHO notes that the rapid spread of the disease in Yemen is due to “deteriorating hygiene and sanitation conditions and disruptions to the water supply across the country.” Further, treating cholera is inhibited by a shortage of medical supplies, medical facilities, and medical workers in the country.

The US-supported war on Yemen has created the conditions for this calamity. As I said when talking about cholera in Yemen in the June 17 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, “Diseases can be as destructive as bullets and bombs in war.”

Issue five.

In the July 8 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I said the August 15 US Senate special election primary in Alabama “could disturb many US politicians and powerbrokers” should former Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore win.

On Tuesday, Moore came in first with 39 percent of the vote.

Moore will compete next in a run-off election against second-place finisher Luther Strange, who the state governor appointed to the Senate to temporarily fill the seat vacated when Jeff Sessions left to become US Attorney General. Strange was also endorsed by President Trump.

Commenting on the primary election results, Moore said, “The attempt by the silk-stocking Washington elitists to control the vote of the people of Alabama has failed.”

-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.

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http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/17/five-minutes-five-issues-racism-venezuela-saving-animals-yemen-cholera-roy-moore/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/17/five-minutes-five-issues-racism-venezuela-saving-animals-yemen-cholera-roy-moore/ Thu, 17 Aug 2017 22:57:47 GMT
The Truth About Yemen - With Vanessa Beeley Daniel McAdams http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/17/the-truth-about-yemen-with-vanessa-beeley/
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http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/17/the-truth-about-yemen-with-vanessa-beeley/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/17/the-truth-about-yemen-with-vanessa-beeley/ Thu, 17 Aug 2017 16:40:11 GMT
Is Hate Speech Free Speech? Daniel McAdams http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/16/is-hate-speech-free-speech/
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http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/16/is-hate-speech-free-speech/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/16/is-hate-speech-free-speech/ Wed, 16 Aug 2017 16:44:13 GMT
Libya Update: Russia Changes the Game Richard Galustian http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/15/libya-update-russia-changes-the-game/

A totally unexpected strategy emerged on the Russian side after yesterday's meeting with Field Marshall Haftar in Moscow. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov's announced shift in Russian policy, couched in appropriate diplomatic language as shown in his Press Release below, changed Russia's game plan at a stroke. It appears that the Russian government has totally endorsed the United Nations track on Libya, saying it was was the right and only way to go and that the dodgy Paris Accord of the 25 July was the basis for peace. 

The Russian diplomat expressed his desire that the next and hopefully final round of UN Peace talks take place in a city in Russia or Chechnya, which would of course to be Russia's advantage. The Russians are planning to invite the UN-backed Government of National Accord Prime Minister Serraj to Moscow in the near future to fill him in on their position as well.

The fact that the Paris Accord produced a document co-signed by Haftar and Serraj that was broken within 24 hours of its signing suggests the event was more a farce than a road map to a peaceful settlement to six years of deadly unrest.

Here is Russia's Press release below. It's worth reading between the lines of what Lavrov says:
14.08.17 - 15:18
Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s meeting with Libyan National Army Commander Khalifa Haftar

On August 14, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov had a meeting at the Foreign Ministry with Libyan National Army Commander Khalifa Haftar, who is paying a working visit to Moscow.

During the talks, the parties in particular focused on the current military and political situation in Libya with an emphasis on the measures being taken to resolve the intra-Libyan crisis through mediation of the international community as well as under the auspices of the UN. In this context, the parties discussed prospects of the intra-Libyan settlement in light of the meeting between Khalifa Haftar and Chairman of the Presidential Council and Prime Minister of the Government of National Accord of Libya Fayez al-Sarraj, held on July 25 in a Parisian suburb.

Russia confirmed the importance of the continuation of the inclusive intra-Libyan dialogue involving members of all major political forces, tribes and regions of the country in order to reach mutually acceptable solutions and to ensure conditions for Libya’s sustainable development as a united, sovereign and independent state. It was also confirmed that Russia is ready to provide further assistance in promoting the political process, in contact with all Libyan parties.
So what has caused Russia to change its strategy and embrace the United Nations Support Mission in Libya's (UNSMIL) past five years of failed talks? What happened and why did Lavrov tell Haftar he should comply with the outdated and defunct UNSMIL Skhirat agreement? Why is Qatari backed Misratan Militia in Doha and all happening at the same time?

Here's my assessment: Moscow sees an opportunity to advance many objectives: to play to the multilateral card but in a slightly different way; to gain bonus points with Europeans and America; and, I think, also to slow down the rush to Libya.

Why do I conclude this? Looking at some of the numbers for their, Libya's, grand plan, it's clear that they can't implement it right away, more like in five years or so. Therefore I deduce that in the meantime, by delaying all progress, the Russians have decided they can manipulate the situation and adapt to inevitable changing circumstances. 

It should be noted that Al-Buyan and Haftar's LNA have clashed many times in various Libyan cities.

So it seems the international game goes on with only the Libyan people not participating.

Galustian is a business and security analyst who has lived in Libya since 2011.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/15/libya-update-russia-changes-the-game/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/15/libya-update-russia-changes-the-game/ Tue, 15 Aug 2017 21:32:05 GMT
Trump Administration Demands Information On Over A Million Visitors To Anti-Trump Website Jonathan Turley http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/15/trump-administration-demands-information-on-over-a-million-visitors-to-anti-trump-website/

A web host called “DreamHost” has gone to court to challenge a demand from the Trump Administration for information on more than 1 million visitors to an anti-Trump website. The demand would covered 1.3 million IP addresses and raises highly troubling free speech and associational concerns. At a minimum, the demand appears wildly too broad and could easily chill political speech for those who oppose this Administration.

DreamHost was hit by the demand after  the Justice Department filed a motion in late July in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. According to the host’s filing, the resulting July 12th warrant demands “names, addresses, telephone numbers and other identifiers, e-mail addresses, business information, the length of service (including start date), means and source of payment for services (including any credit card or bank account number), and information about any domain name registration.” The company had a valid stated concern:
The request from the [Justice Department] demands that DreamHost hand over 1.3 million visitor IP addresses — in addition to contact information, email content, and photos of thousands of people — in an effort to determine who simply visited the website. That information could be used to identify any individuals who used this site to exercise and express political speech protected under the Constitution’s First Amendment. That should be enough to set alarm bells off in anyone’s mind.
The website helped coordinate demonstrations against President Trump in Washington, D.C., on Inauguration Day in January. Some of those protesters turned violent and have faced indictments.  It is clear that the government has a right to investigate those individuals but the government also has a duty to tailor such demands in light of the powerful free speech interests involved in such demonstrations. I see no evidence of such tailoring in this demand and the court should give the warrant close scrutiny in light of its obvious impact on political speech.

A hearing is scheduled in Washington before District of Columbia Superior Court Judge Lynn Leibovitz on Friday about the information request.

Here is the company’s filing: DreamHost filing the United States response to the filing: DreamHost/US filing.

Reprinted with permission from JonathanTurley.org.]]>
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End Of Iran Nuke Deal? What Comes Next... Daniel McAdams http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/15/end-of-iran-nuke-deal-what-comes-next/
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http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/15/end-of-iran-nuke-deal-what-comes-next/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2017/august/15/end-of-iran-nuke-deal-what-comes-next/ Tue, 15 Aug 2017 18:07:18 GMT
The Afghanistan Speech President Trump Should Deliver Tonight Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/21/the-afghanistan-speech-president-trump-should-deliver-tonight/ expected to deliver a speech tonight in which he announces the deployment of more United States troops to Afghanistan to take part in America’s longest war. Over at The Intercept today Jon Schwarz and Robert Mackey document many of Trump’s pronouncements over the last few years, largely on Twitter, opposing continuation of the war and proposing that the US troops leave Afghanistan. Included in Schwarz and Mackey’s article is a video Trump made in March of 2012 in which Trump emphatically declared “Afghanistan is a total and complete disaster.”

Trump further stated in the video:
Let’s get with it. Get out of Afghanistan. We’ve wasted billions and billions of dollars and, more importantly, thousands and thousands of lives, not to mention all of these young men and young women that come home and they really have problems.
It would be refreshing to see Trump stand up to the generals surrounding him, put down his prepared speech, and make a statement like this one he made five years back. But, don’t count on it happening.

Watch Trump’s 2012 video here:



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http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/21/the-afghanistan-speech-president-trump-should-deliver-tonight/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/21/the-afghanistan-speech-president-trump-should-deliver-tonight/ Mon, 21 Aug 2017 22:00:38 GMT
Trump's Afghanistan Strategy: What To Expect. With Jacob Hornberger Daniel McAdams http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/21/trumps-afghanistan-strategy-what-to-expect-with-jacob-hornberger/
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http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/21/trumps-afghanistan-strategy-what-to-expect-with-jacob-hornberger/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/21/trumps-afghanistan-strategy-what-to-expect-with-jacob-hornberger/ Mon, 21 Aug 2017 17:54:45 GMT
Lawrence Wilkerson Explains the Danger of Trump Handing War Decisions over to Pentagon Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/21/lawrence-wilkerson-explains-the-danger-of-trump-handing-war-decisions-over-to-pentagon/ significantly decreasing presidential control over the military’s war activities.

Responding to Maté’s comment that from Trump’s January inauguration through this month, “Trump has dropped more than 20,000 bombs, about 80% of what President Obama dropped in all of 2016,” Wilkerson, who was chief of staff for Secretary of State Colin Powell and now teaches at the College of William & Mary, advises that Trump removing presidential restraint and oversight over military actions overseas means more destruction will occur to advance purposes far removed from protecting Americans — to benefit armaments manufacturers and advance training, for example.

undefined

Wilkerson explains:
First, Aaron, we have to understand that Trump is not in control of this. Trump is not dropping these bombs. I appreciate your saying that in that way, and I realize it was metaphoric, but in a real sense, he is not. Not only is he not in those airplanes, he has given the war zones to the Pentagon. So what we're seeing is the Pentagon taking ultimate advantage of this president's not really caring about the details of what they're doing.

Any time you turn the United States military loose — believe me, I was there for 31 years — and you tell them they've got carte blanche, they are gonna drop bombs until the cows come home. They know that their bread is buttered with Raytheon and Lockheed Martin and other makers of these armaments, and they know that in order to keep a good, warm production base and a relationship with these defense contractors, that they gotta drop a lot of bombs and shoot a lot of bullets.

That's what the military does. They're training their pilots; they're testing their aviation equipment, their AWACS control and so forth. They're salivating over doing this, not to put too fine a point on it. So you let the Pentagon be in charge, and the Pentagon is gonna run, and run, and run, and that's essentially what's happening. I daresay that many of the bombs aren't really dropping on feasible targets. They're just dropping to be dropped or to train or whatever.
Watch Wilkerson’s complete interview here:



Wilkerson is an Academic Board member for the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/21/lawrence-wilkerson-explains-the-danger-of-trump-handing-war-decisions-over-to-pentagon/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/21/lawrence-wilkerson-explains-the-danger-of-trump-handing-war-decisions-over-to-pentagon/ Mon, 21 Aug 2017 13:59:11 GMT
White House Continues to Talk Up ‘Preventative War’ Against North Korea Jason Ditz http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/21/white-house-continues-to-talk-up-preventative-war-against-north-korea/

While there has been a concerted effort from some members of the Trump Administration to downplay the risk of an imminent nuclear war with North Korea, the possibility of such a conflict is still palpable, with White House officials openly talking about launch a “preventative war” to resolve the situation.

National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster is seen as one of the leading advocates of this idea, which seeks to avoid the question of how much of a threat North Korea will pose in the future by just attacking them outright now, consequences be damned.

But this position also fits neatly into President Trump’s own “fire and fury” narrative, and Trump has repeatedly given the impression in recent weeks that he considers attacking North Korea out of the blue a viable option, albeit one of many that are under consideration.

South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in has tried to reject this idea, insisting South Korea has an inherent right to “veto” any US war against North Korea. Yet Defense Secretary James Mattis and other US officials have consistently dodged that question since Moon made the claim, and are mostly couching the war as about the US, as opposed to defending South Korea.

This casts a big shadow over the new US military exercises in South Korea this week, with North Korea openly warning that they are watching for any reckless escalation during the operation, and that they believe the war could quickly go nuclear if the exercise turned into “actual fighting.”

Such a US sneak attack under the guise of military drills would likely be condemned region-wide, but the even bigger problem is that, no matter how the US decides to start this war, doing so will have massive fallout for the region, and particularly for South Korea.

Reprinted with permission from Antiwar.com.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/21/white-house-continues-to-talk-up-preventative-war-against-north-korea/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/21/white-house-continues-to-talk-up-preventative-war-against-north-korea/ Mon, 21 Aug 2017 12:55:27 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Racism, Venezuela, Saving Animals, Yemen Cholera, Roy Moore Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/17/five-minutes-five-issues-racism-venezuela-saving-animals-yemen-cholera-roy-moore/ A new episode of Five Minutes Five Issues posted on Thursday. You can listen to it, and read a transcript, below. You can also find previous episodes of the show at Stitcher, iTunes, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

Enough with all the complaints that United States President Donald Trump has not denounced racism sufficiently. What a president should do is stand up for the Constitution and ensure the government does not violate individual rights. One of those rights is the right to be racist.

Issue two.

In last week’s episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, while discussing President Trump’s declaration that he may use a “military option” against the Venezuela government, I said, “Nobody is even suggesting Venezuela poses any threat to America.”

Then, this week, two “somebodies” from the Trump administration did suggest it.

In a joint press conference with the president of Columbia, US Vice President Mice Pence said this:

A failed state in Venezuela will drive more illegal drug trafficking, with its murderous criminal consequences, radiating outward. A failed state in Venezuela will drive more illegal migration, compromising our borders, damaging our economies. And ultimately, a failed state in Venezuela will endanger the wellbeing of all who call this hemisphere home.

Also, when host Chris Wallace asked at Fox News why a “civil war” or “terrible situation” in Venezuela is “our problem” and could justify US military intervention, US Central Intelligence Agency Director Mike Pompeo gave the following answer:

Oh, look, Venezuela could very much become a risk to the United States of America. The Cubans are there. The Russians are there. The Iranians, Hezbollah are there.

This is something that has a risk of getting to a very, very bad place. And so, America needs to take this very seriously.

Pence and Pompeo’s statements are reminiscent of the lead up to the 2003 US invasion of Iraq, when George W. Bush administration officials ran from microphone to microphone to promote fear of the Iraq government and scare Americans into supporting war.

Issue three.

You have likely read some of Ron Paul Institute Academic Board Member Eric Margolis’ informative articles regarding conflicts and politics around the world.

Here is something you may not know about Margolis. Allan Hall reported at the Daily Mail that Margolis was the major financial backer for saving this month “[t]hree lions, two tigers, two Asian black bears, two Husky dogs, and two hyenas.” The animals had experienced dire conditions at an Aleppo, Syria zoo devastated in the country’s ongoing war.

Hall reports that, after many other animals had died in the zoo, these surviving animals have made it to a sanctuary in Jordan.

Issue four.

In a Monday press release, the World Health Organization (WHO) said there have been half a million suspected cholera cases in Yemen this year. The WHO notes that the rapid spread of the disease in Yemen is due to “deteriorating hygiene and sanitation conditions and disruptions to the water supply across the country.” Further, treating cholera is inhibited by a shortage of medical supplies, medical facilities, and medical workers in the country.

The US-supported war on Yemen has created the conditions for this calamity. As I said when talking about cholera in Yemen in the June 17 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, “Diseases can be as destructive as bullets and bombs in war.”

Issue five.

In the July 8 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I said the August 15 US Senate special election primary in Alabama “could disturb many US politicians and powerbrokers” should former Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore win.

On Tuesday, Moore came in first with 39 percent of the vote.

Moore will compete next in a run-off election against second-place finisher Luther Strange, who the state governor appointed to the Senate to temporarily fill the seat vacated when Jeff Sessions left to become US Attorney General. Strange was also endorsed by President Trump.

Commenting on the primary election results, Moore said, “The attempt by the silk-stocking Washington elitists to control the vote of the people of Alabama has failed.”

-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.

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The Truth About Yemen - With Vanessa Beeley Daniel McAdams http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/17/the-truth-about-yemen-with-vanessa-beeley/
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http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/17/the-truth-about-yemen-with-vanessa-beeley/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/17/the-truth-about-yemen-with-vanessa-beeley/ Thu, 17 Aug 2017 16:40:11 GMT
Is Hate Speech Free Speech? Daniel McAdams http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/16/is-hate-speech-free-speech/
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http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/16/is-hate-speech-free-speech/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/16/is-hate-speech-free-speech/ Wed, 16 Aug 2017 16:44:13 GMT
Libya Update: Russia Changes the Game Richard Galustian http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/15/libya-update-russia-changes-the-game/

A totally unexpected strategy emerged on the Russian side after yesterday's meeting with Field Marshall Haftar in Moscow. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov's announced shift in Russian policy, couched in appropriate diplomatic language as shown in his Press Release below, changed Russia's game plan at a stroke. It appears that the Russian government has totally endorsed the United Nations track on Libya, saying it was was the right and only way to go and that the dodgy Paris Accord of the 25 July was the basis for peace. 

The Russian diplomat expressed his desire that the next and hopefully final round of UN Peace talks take place in a city in Russia or Chechnya, which would of course to be Russia's advantage. The Russians are planning to invite the UN-backed Government of National Accord Prime Minister Serraj to Moscow in the near future to fill him in on their position as well.

The fact that the Paris Accord produced a document co-signed by Haftar and Serraj that was broken within 24 hours of its signing suggests the event was more a farce than a road map to a peaceful settlement to six years of deadly unrest.

Here is Russia's Press release below. It's worth reading between the lines of what Lavrov says:
14.08.17 - 15:18
Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s meeting with Libyan National Army Commander Khalifa Haftar

On August 14, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov had a meeting at the Foreign Ministry with Libyan National Army Commander Khalifa Haftar, who is paying a working visit to Moscow.

During the talks, the parties in particular focused on the current military and political situation in Libya with an emphasis on the measures being taken to resolve the intra-Libyan crisis through mediation of the international community as well as under the auspices of the UN. In this context, the parties discussed prospects of the intra-Libyan settlement in light of the meeting between Khalifa Haftar and Chairman of the Presidential Council and Prime Minister of the Government of National Accord of Libya Fayez al-Sarraj, held on July 25 in a Parisian suburb.

Russia confirmed the importance of the continuation of the inclusive intra-Libyan dialogue involving members of all major political forces, tribes and regions of the country in order to reach mutually acceptable solutions and to ensure conditions for Libya’s sustainable development as a united, sovereign and independent state. It was also confirmed that Russia is ready to provide further assistance in promoting the political process, in contact with all Libyan parties.
So what has caused Russia to change its strategy and embrace the United Nations Support Mission in Libya's (UNSMIL) past five years of failed talks? What happened and why did Lavrov tell Haftar he should comply with the outdated and defunct UNSMIL Skhirat agreement? Why is Qatari backed Misratan Militia in Doha and all happening at the same time?

Here's my assessment: Moscow sees an opportunity to advance many objectives: to play to the multilateral card but in a slightly different way; to gain bonus points with Europeans and America; and, I think, also to slow down the rush to Libya.

Why do I conclude this? Looking at some of the numbers for their, Libya's, grand plan, it's clear that they can't implement it right away, more like in five years or so. Therefore I deduce that in the meantime, by delaying all progress, the Russians have decided they can manipulate the situation and adapt to inevitable changing circumstances. 

It should be noted that Al-Buyan and Haftar's LNA have clashed many times in various Libyan cities.

So it seems the international game goes on with only the Libyan people not participating.

Galustian is a business and security analyst who has lived in Libya since 2011.]]>
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Trump Administration Demands Information On Over A Million Visitors To Anti-Trump Website Jonathan Turley http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/15/trump-administration-demands-information-on-over-a-million-visitors-to-anti-trump-website/

A web host called “DreamHost” has gone to court to challenge a demand from the Trump Administration for information on more than 1 million visitors to an anti-Trump website. The demand would covered 1.3 million IP addresses and raises highly troubling free speech and associational concerns. At a minimum, the demand appears wildly too broad and could easily chill political speech for those who oppose this Administration.

DreamHost was hit by the demand after  the Justice Department filed a motion in late July in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. According to the host’s filing, the resulting July 12th warrant demands “names, addresses, telephone numbers and other identifiers, e-mail addresses, business information, the length of service (including start date), means and source of payment for services (including any credit card or bank account number), and information about any domain name registration.” The company had a valid stated concern:
The request from the [Justice Department] demands that DreamHost hand over 1.3 million visitor IP addresses — in addition to contact information, email content, and photos of thousands of people — in an effort to determine who simply visited the website. That information could be used to identify any individuals who used this site to exercise and express political speech protected under the Constitution’s First Amendment. That should be enough to set alarm bells off in anyone’s mind.
The website helped coordinate demonstrations against President Trump in Washington, D.C., on Inauguration Day in January. Some of those protesters turned violent and have faced indictments.  It is clear that the government has a right to investigate those individuals but the government also has a duty to tailor such demands in light of the powerful free speech interests involved in such demonstrations. I see no evidence of such tailoring in this demand and the court should give the warrant close scrutiny in light of its obvious impact on political speech.

A hearing is scheduled in Washington before District of Columbia Superior Court Judge Lynn Leibovitz on Friday about the information request.

Here is the company’s filing: DreamHost filing the United States response to the filing: DreamHost/US filing.

Reprinted with permission from JonathanTurley.org.]]>
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End Of Iran Nuke Deal? What Comes Next... Daniel McAdams http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2017/august/15/end-of-iran-nuke-deal-what-comes-next/
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The Afghanistan Speech President Trump Should Deliver Tonight Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2017/august/21/the-afghanistan-speech-president-trump-should-deliver-tonight/ expected to deliver a speech tonight in which he announces the deployment of more United States troops to Afghanistan to take part in America’s longest war. Over at The Intercept today Jon Schwarz and Robert Mackey document many of Trump’s pronouncements over the last few years, largely on Twitter, opposing continuation of the war and proposing that the US troops leave Afghanistan. Included in Schwarz and Mackey’s article is a video Trump made in March of 2012 in which Trump emphatically declared “Afghanistan is a total and complete disaster.”

Trump further stated in the video:
Let’s get with it. Get out of Afghanistan. We’ve wasted billions and billions of dollars and, more importantly, thousands and thousands of lives, not to mention all of these young men and young women that come home and they really have problems.
It would be refreshing to see Trump stand up to the generals surrounding him, put down his prepared speech, and make a statement like this one he made five years back. But, don’t count on it happening.

Watch Trump’s 2012 video here:



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Trump's Afghanistan Strategy: What To Expect. With Jacob Hornberger Daniel McAdams http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2017/august/21/trumps-afghanistan-strategy-what-to-expect-with-jacob-hornberger/
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Lawrence Wilkerson Explains the Danger of Trump Handing War Decisions over to Pentagon Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2017/august/21/lawrence-wilkerson-explains-the-danger-of-trump-handing-war-decisions-over-to-pentagon/ significantly decreasing presidential control over the military’s war activities.

Responding to Maté’s comment that from Trump’s January inauguration through this month, “Trump has dropped more than 20,000 bombs, about 80% of what President Obama dropped in all of 2016,” Wilkerson, who was chief of staff for Secretary of State Colin Powell and now teaches at the College of William & Mary, advises that Trump removing presidential restraint and oversight over military actions overseas means more destruction will occur to advance purposes far removed from protecting Americans — to benefit armaments manufacturers and advance training, for example.

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Wilkerson explains:
First, Aaron, we have to understand that Trump is not in control of this. Trump is not dropping these bombs. I appreciate your saying that in that way, and I realize it was metaphoric, but in a real sense, he is not. Not only is he not in those airplanes, he has given the war zones to the Pentagon. So what we're seeing is the Pentagon taking ultimate advantage of this president's not really caring about the details of what they're doing.

Any time you turn the United States military loose — believe me, I was there for 31 years — and you tell them they've got carte blanche, they are gonna drop bombs until the cows come home. They know that their bread is buttered with Raytheon and Lockheed Martin and other makers of these armaments, and they know that in order to keep a good, warm production base and a relationship with these defense contractors, that they gotta drop a lot of bombs and shoot a lot of bullets.

That's what the military does. They're training their pilots; they're testing their aviation equipment, their AWACS control and so forth. They're salivating over doing this, not to put too fine a point on it. So you let the Pentagon be in charge, and the Pentagon is gonna run, and run, and run, and that's essentially what's happening. I daresay that many of the bombs aren't really dropping on feasible targets. They're just dropping to be dropped or to train or whatever.
Watch Wilkerson’s complete interview here:



Wilkerson is an Academic Board member for the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity.]]>
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White House Continues to Talk Up ‘Preventative War’ Against North Korea Jason Ditz http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2017/august/21/white-house-continues-to-talk-up-preventative-war-against-north-korea/

While there has been a concerted effort from some members of the Trump Administration to downplay the risk of an imminent nuclear war with North Korea, the possibility of such a conflict is still palpable, with White House officials openly talking about launch a “preventative war” to resolve the situation.

National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster is seen as one of the leading advocates of this idea, which seeks to avoid the question of how much of a threat North Korea will pose in the future by just attacking them outright now, consequences be damned.

But this position also fits neatly into President Trump’s own “fire and fury” narrative, and Trump has repeatedly given the impression in recent weeks that he considers attacking North Korea out of the blue a viable option, albeit one of many that are under consideration.

South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in has tried to reject this idea, insisting South Korea has an inherent right to “veto” any US war against North Korea. Yet Defense Secretary James Mattis and other US officials have consistently dodged that question since Moon made the claim, and are mostly couching the war as about the US, as opposed to defending South Korea.

This casts a big shadow over the new US military exercises in South Korea this week, with North Korea openly warning that they are watching for any reckless escalation during the operation, and that they believe the war could quickly go nuclear if the exercise turned into “actual fighting.”

Such a US sneak attack under the guise of military drills would likely be condemned region-wide, but the even bigger problem is that, no matter how the US decides to start this war, doing so will have massive fallout for the region, and particularly for South Korea.

Reprinted with permission from Antiwar.com.]]>
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Five Minutes Five Issues: Racism, Venezuela, Saving Animals, Yemen Cholera, Roy Moore Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2017/august/17/five-minutes-five-issues-racism-venezuela-saving-animals-yemen-cholera-roy-moore/ A new episode of Five Minutes Five Issues posted on Thursday. You can listen to it, and read a transcript, below. You can also find previous episodes of the show at Stitcher, iTunes, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

Enough with all the complaints that United States President Donald Trump has not denounced racism sufficiently. What a president should do is stand up for the Constitution and ensure the government does not violate individual rights. One of those rights is the right to be racist.

Issue two.

In last week’s episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, while discussing President Trump’s declaration that he may use a “military option” against the Venezuela government, I said, “Nobody is even suggesting Venezuela poses any threat to America.”

Then, this week, two “somebodies” from the Trump administration did suggest it.

In a joint press conference with the president of Columbia, US Vice President Mice Pence said this:

A failed state in Venezuela will drive more illegal drug trafficking, with its murderous criminal consequences, radiating outward. A failed state in Venezuela will drive more illegal migration, compromising our borders, damaging our economies. And ultimately, a failed state in Venezuela will endanger the wellbeing of all who call this hemisphere home.

Also, when host Chris Wallace asked at Fox News why a “civil war” or “terrible situation” in Venezuela is “our problem” and could justify US military intervention, US Central Intelligence Agency Director Mike Pompeo gave the following answer:

Oh, look, Venezuela could very much become a risk to the United States of America. The Cubans are there. The Russians are there. The Iranians, Hezbollah are there.

This is something that has a risk of getting to a very, very bad place. And so, America needs to take this very seriously.

Pence and Pompeo’s statements are reminiscent of the lead up to the 2003 US invasion of Iraq, when George W. Bush administration officials ran from microphone to microphone to promote fear of the Iraq government and scare Americans into supporting war.

Issue three.

You have likely read some of Ron Paul Institute Academic Board Member Eric Margolis’ informative articles regarding conflicts and politics around the world.

Here is something you may not know about Margolis. Allan Hall reported at the Daily Mail that Margolis was the major financial backer for saving this month “[t]hree lions, two tigers, two Asian black bears, two Husky dogs, and two hyenas.” The animals had experienced dire conditions at an Aleppo, Syria zoo devastated in the country’s ongoing war.

Hall reports that, after many other animals had died in the zoo, these surviving animals have made it to a sanctuary in Jordan.

Issue four.

In a Monday press release, the World Health Organization (WHO) said there have been half a million suspected cholera cases in Yemen this year. The WHO notes that the rapid spread of the disease in Yemen is due to “deteriorating hygiene and sanitation conditions and disruptions to the water supply across the country.” Further, treating cholera is inhibited by a shortage of medical supplies, medical facilities, and medical workers in the country.

The US-supported war on Yemen has created the conditions for this calamity. As I said when talking about cholera in Yemen in the June 17 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, “Diseases can be as destructive as bullets and bombs in war.”

Issue five.

In the July 8 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I said the August 15 US Senate special election primary in Alabama “could disturb many US politicians and powerbrokers” should former Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore win.

On Tuesday, Moore came in first with 39 percent of the vote.

Moore will compete next in a run-off election against second-place finisher Luther Strange, who the state governor appointed to the Senate to temporarily fill the seat vacated when Jeff Sessions left to become US Attorney General. Strange was also endorsed by President Trump.

Commenting on the primary election results, Moore said, “The attempt by the silk-stocking Washington elitists to control the vote of the people of Alabama has failed.”

-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.

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The Truth About Yemen - With Vanessa Beeley Daniel McAdams http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2017/august/17/the-truth-about-yemen-with-vanessa-beeley/
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Is Hate Speech Free Speech? Daniel McAdams http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2017/august/16/is-hate-speech-free-speech/
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Libya Update: Russia Changes the Game Richard Galustian http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2017/august/15/libya-update-russia-changes-the-game/

A totally unexpected strategy emerged on the Russian side after yesterday's meeting with Field Marshall Haftar in Moscow. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov's announced shift in Russian policy, couched in appropriate diplomatic language as shown in his Press Release below, changed Russia's game plan at a stroke. It appears that the Russian government has totally endorsed the United Nations track on Libya, saying it was was the right and only way to go and that the dodgy Paris Accord of the 25 July was the basis for peace. 

The Russian diplomat expressed his desire that the next and hopefully final round of UN Peace talks take place in a city in Russia or Chechnya, which would of course to be Russia's advantage. The Russians are planning to invite the UN-backed Government of National Accord Prime Minister Serraj to Moscow in the near future to fill him in on their position as well.

The fact that the Paris Accord produced a document co-signed by Haftar and Serraj that was broken within 24 hours of its signing suggests the event was more a farce than a road map to a peaceful settlement to six years of deadly unrest.

Here is Russia's Press release below. It's worth reading between the lines of what Lavrov says:
14.08.17 - 15:18
Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s meeting with Libyan National Army Commander Khalifa Haftar

On August 14, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov had a meeting at the Foreign Ministry with Libyan National Army Commander Khalifa Haftar, who is paying a working visit to Moscow.

During the talks, the parties in particular focused on the current military and political situation in Libya with an emphasis on the measures being taken to resolve the intra-Libyan crisis through mediation of the international community as well as under the auspices of the UN. In this context, the parties discussed prospects of the intra-Libyan settlement in light of the meeting between Khalifa Haftar and Chairman of the Presidential Council and Prime Minister of the Government of National Accord of Libya Fayez al-Sarraj, held on July 25 in a Parisian suburb.

Russia confirmed the importance of the continuation of the inclusive intra-Libyan dialogue involving members of all major political forces, tribes and regions of the country in order to reach mutually acceptable solutions and to ensure conditions for Libya’s sustainable development as a united, sovereign and independent state. It was also confirmed that Russia is ready to provide further assistance in promoting the political process, in contact with all Libyan parties.
So what has caused Russia to change its strategy and embrace the United Nations Support Mission in Libya's (UNSMIL) past five years of failed talks? What happened and why did Lavrov tell Haftar he should comply with the outdated and defunct UNSMIL Skhirat agreement? Why is Qatari backed Misratan Militia in Doha and all happening at the same time?

Here's my assessment: Moscow sees an opportunity to advance many objectives: to play to the multilateral card but in a slightly different way; to gain bonus points with Europeans and America; and, I think, also to slow down the rush to Libya.

Why do I conclude this? Looking at some of the numbers for their, Libya's, grand plan, it's clear that they can't implement it right away, more like in five years or so. Therefore I deduce that in the meantime, by delaying all progress, the Russians have decided they can manipulate the situation and adapt to inevitable changing circumstances. 

It should be noted that Al-Buyan and Haftar's LNA have clashed many times in various Libyan cities.

So it seems the international game goes on with only the Libyan people not participating.

Galustian is a business and security analyst who has lived in Libya since 2011.]]>
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Trump Administration Demands Information On Over A Million Visitors To Anti-Trump Website Jonathan Turley http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2017/august/15/trump-administration-demands-information-on-over-a-million-visitors-to-anti-trump-website/

A web host called “DreamHost” has gone to court to challenge a demand from the Trump Administration for information on more than 1 million visitors to an anti-Trump website. The demand would covered 1.3 million IP addresses and raises highly troubling free speech and associational concerns. At a minimum, the demand appears wildly too broad and could easily chill political speech for those who oppose this Administration.

DreamHost was hit by the demand after  the Justice Department filed a motion in late July in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. According to the host’s filing, the resulting July 12th warrant demands “names, addresses, telephone numbers and other identifiers, e-mail addresses, business information, the length of service (including start date), means and source of payment for services (including any credit card or bank account number), and information about any domain name registration.” The company had a valid stated concern:
The request from the [Justice Department] demands that DreamHost hand over 1.3 million visitor IP addresses — in addition to contact information, email content, and photos of thousands of people — in an effort to determine who simply visited the website. That information could be used to identify any individuals who used this site to exercise and express political speech protected under the Constitution’s First Amendment. That should be enough to set alarm bells off in anyone’s mind.
The website helped coordinate demonstrations against President Trump in Washington, D.C., on Inauguration Day in January. Some of those protesters turned violent and have faced indictments.  It is clear that the government has a right to investigate those individuals but the government also has a duty to tailor such demands in light of the powerful free speech interests involved in such demonstrations. I see no evidence of such tailoring in this demand and the court should give the warrant close scrutiny in light of its obvious impact on political speech.

A hearing is scheduled in Washington before District of Columbia Superior Court Judge Lynn Leibovitz on Friday about the information request.

Here is the company’s filing: DreamHost filing the United States response to the filing: DreamHost/US filing.

Reprinted with permission from JonathanTurley.org.]]>
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End Of Iran Nuke Deal? What Comes Next... Daniel McAdams http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2017/august/15/end-of-iran-nuke-deal-what-comes-next/
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The Afghanistan Speech President Trump Should Deliver Tonight Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/21/the-afghanistan-speech-president-trump-should-deliver-tonight/ expected to deliver a speech tonight in which he announces the deployment of more United States troops to Afghanistan to take part in America’s longest war. Over at The Intercept today Jon Schwarz and Robert Mackey document many of Trump’s pronouncements over the last few years, largely on Twitter, opposing continuation of the war and proposing that the US troops leave Afghanistan. Included in Schwarz and Mackey’s article is a video Trump made in March of 2012 in which Trump emphatically declared “Afghanistan is a total and complete disaster.”

Trump further stated in the video:
Let’s get with it. Get out of Afghanistan. We’ve wasted billions and billions of dollars and, more importantly, thousands and thousands of lives, not to mention all of these young men and young women that come home and they really have problems.
It would be refreshing to see Trump stand up to the generals surrounding him, put down his prepared speech, and make a statement like this one he made five years back. But, don’t count on it happening.

Watch Trump’s 2012 video here:



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Trump's Afghanistan Strategy: What To Expect. With Jacob Hornberger Daniel McAdams http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/21/trumps-afghanistan-strategy-what-to-expect-with-jacob-hornberger/
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http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/21/trumps-afghanistan-strategy-what-to-expect-with-jacob-hornberger/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/21/trumps-afghanistan-strategy-what-to-expect-with-jacob-hornberger/ Mon, 21 Aug 2017 17:54:45 GMT
Lawrence Wilkerson Explains the Danger of Trump Handing War Decisions over to Pentagon Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/21/lawrence-wilkerson-explains-the-danger-of-trump-handing-war-decisions-over-to-pentagon/ significantly decreasing presidential control over the military’s war activities.

Responding to Maté’s comment that from Trump’s January inauguration through this month, “Trump has dropped more than 20,000 bombs, about 80% of what President Obama dropped in all of 2016,” Wilkerson, who was chief of staff for Secretary of State Colin Powell and now teaches at the College of William & Mary, advises that Trump removing presidential restraint and oversight over military actions overseas means more destruction will occur to advance purposes far removed from protecting Americans — to benefit armaments manufacturers and advance training, for example.

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Wilkerson explains:
First, Aaron, we have to understand that Trump is not in control of this. Trump is not dropping these bombs. I appreciate your saying that in that way, and I realize it was metaphoric, but in a real sense, he is not. Not only is he not in those airplanes, he has given the war zones to the Pentagon. So what we're seeing is the Pentagon taking ultimate advantage of this president's not really caring about the details of what they're doing.

Any time you turn the United States military loose — believe me, I was there for 31 years — and you tell them they've got carte blanche, they are gonna drop bombs until the cows come home. They know that their bread is buttered with Raytheon and Lockheed Martin and other makers of these armaments, and they know that in order to keep a good, warm production base and a relationship with these defense contractors, that they gotta drop a lot of bombs and shoot a lot of bullets.

That's what the military does. They're training their pilots; they're testing their aviation equipment, their AWACS control and so forth. They're salivating over doing this, not to put too fine a point on it. So you let the Pentagon be in charge, and the Pentagon is gonna run, and run, and run, and that's essentially what's happening. I daresay that many of the bombs aren't really dropping on feasible targets. They're just dropping to be dropped or to train or whatever.
Watch Wilkerson’s complete interview here:



Wilkerson is an Academic Board member for the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/21/lawrence-wilkerson-explains-the-danger-of-trump-handing-war-decisions-over-to-pentagon/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/21/lawrence-wilkerson-explains-the-danger-of-trump-handing-war-decisions-over-to-pentagon/ Mon, 21 Aug 2017 13:59:11 GMT
White House Continues to Talk Up ‘Preventative War’ Against North Korea Jason Ditz http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/21/white-house-continues-to-talk-up-preventative-war-against-north-korea/

While there has been a concerted effort from some members of the Trump Administration to downplay the risk of an imminent nuclear war with North Korea, the possibility of such a conflict is still palpable, with White House officials openly talking about launch a “preventative war” to resolve the situation.

National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster is seen as one of the leading advocates of this idea, which seeks to avoid the question of how much of a threat North Korea will pose in the future by just attacking them outright now, consequences be damned.

But this position also fits neatly into President Trump’s own “fire and fury” narrative, and Trump has repeatedly given the impression in recent weeks that he considers attacking North Korea out of the blue a viable option, albeit one of many that are under consideration.

South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in has tried to reject this idea, insisting South Korea has an inherent right to “veto” any US war against North Korea. Yet Defense Secretary James Mattis and other US officials have consistently dodged that question since Moon made the claim, and are mostly couching the war as about the US, as opposed to defending South Korea.

This casts a big shadow over the new US military exercises in South Korea this week, with North Korea openly warning that they are watching for any reckless escalation during the operation, and that they believe the war could quickly go nuclear if the exercise turned into “actual fighting.”

Such a US sneak attack under the guise of military drills would likely be condemned region-wide, but the even bigger problem is that, no matter how the US decides to start this war, doing so will have massive fallout for the region, and particularly for South Korea.

Reprinted with permission from Antiwar.com.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/21/white-house-continues-to-talk-up-preventative-war-against-north-korea/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/21/white-house-continues-to-talk-up-preventative-war-against-north-korea/ Mon, 21 Aug 2017 12:55:27 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Racism, Venezuela, Saving Animals, Yemen Cholera, Roy Moore Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/17/five-minutes-five-issues-racism-venezuela-saving-animals-yemen-cholera-roy-moore/ A new episode of Five Minutes Five Issues posted on Thursday. You can listen to it, and read a transcript, below. You can also find previous episodes of the show at Stitcher, iTunes, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

Enough with all the complaints that United States President Donald Trump has not denounced racism sufficiently. What a president should do is stand up for the Constitution and ensure the government does not violate individual rights. One of those rights is the right to be racist.

Issue two.

In last week’s episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, while discussing President Trump’s declaration that he may use a “military option” against the Venezuela government, I said, “Nobody is even suggesting Venezuela poses any threat to America.”

Then, this week, two “somebodies” from the Trump administration did suggest it.

In a joint press conference with the president of Columbia, US Vice President Mice Pence said this:

A failed state in Venezuela will drive more illegal drug trafficking, with its murderous criminal consequences, radiating outward. A failed state in Venezuela will drive more illegal migration, compromising our borders, damaging our economies. And ultimately, a failed state in Venezuela will endanger the wellbeing of all who call this hemisphere home.

Also, when host Chris Wallace asked at Fox News why a “civil war” or “terrible situation” in Venezuela is “our problem” and could justify US military intervention, US Central Intelligence Agency Director Mike Pompeo gave the following answer:

Oh, look, Venezuela could very much become a risk to the United States of America. The Cubans are there. The Russians are there. The Iranians, Hezbollah are there.

This is something that has a risk of getting to a very, very bad place. And so, America needs to take this very seriously.

Pence and Pompeo’s statements are reminiscent of the lead up to the 2003 US invasion of Iraq, when George W. Bush administration officials ran from microphone to microphone to promote fear of the Iraq government and scare Americans into supporting war.

Issue three.

You have likely read some of Ron Paul Institute Academic Board Member Eric Margolis’ informative articles regarding conflicts and politics around the world.

Here is something you may not know about Margolis. Allan Hall reported at the Daily Mail that Margolis was the major financial backer for saving this month “[t]hree lions, two tigers, two Asian black bears, two Husky dogs, and two hyenas.” The animals had experienced dire conditions at an Aleppo, Syria zoo devastated in the country’s ongoing war.

Hall reports that, after many other animals had died in the zoo, these surviving animals have made it to a sanctuary in Jordan.

Issue four.

In a Monday press release, the World Health Organization (WHO) said there have been half a million suspected cholera cases in Yemen this year. The WHO notes that the rapid spread of the disease in Yemen is due to “deteriorating hygiene and sanitation conditions and disruptions to the water supply across the country.” Further, treating cholera is inhibited by a shortage of medical supplies, medical facilities, and medical workers in the country.

The US-supported war on Yemen has created the conditions for this calamity. As I said when talking about cholera in Yemen in the June 17 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, “Diseases can be as destructive as bullets and bombs in war.”

Issue five.

In the July 8 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I said the August 15 US Senate special election primary in Alabama “could disturb many US politicians and powerbrokers” should former Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore win.

On Tuesday, Moore came in first with 39 percent of the vote.

Moore will compete next in a run-off election against second-place finisher Luther Strange, who the state governor appointed to the Senate to temporarily fill the seat vacated when Jeff Sessions left to become US Attorney General. Strange was also endorsed by President Trump.

Commenting on the primary election results, Moore said, “The attempt by the silk-stocking Washington elitists to control the vote of the people of Alabama has failed.”

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That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.

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http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/17/five-minutes-five-issues-racism-venezuela-saving-animals-yemen-cholera-roy-moore/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/17/five-minutes-five-issues-racism-venezuela-saving-animals-yemen-cholera-roy-moore/ Thu, 17 Aug 2017 22:57:47 GMT
The Truth About Yemen - With Vanessa Beeley Daniel McAdams http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/17/the-truth-about-yemen-with-vanessa-beeley/
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http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/17/the-truth-about-yemen-with-vanessa-beeley/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/17/the-truth-about-yemen-with-vanessa-beeley/ Thu, 17 Aug 2017 16:40:11 GMT
Is Hate Speech Free Speech? Daniel McAdams http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/16/is-hate-speech-free-speech/
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http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/16/is-hate-speech-free-speech/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/16/is-hate-speech-free-speech/ Wed, 16 Aug 2017 16:44:13 GMT
Libya Update: Russia Changes the Game Richard Galustian http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/15/libya-update-russia-changes-the-game/

A totally unexpected strategy emerged on the Russian side after yesterday's meeting with Field Marshall Haftar in Moscow. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov's announced shift in Russian policy, couched in appropriate diplomatic language as shown in his Press Release below, changed Russia's game plan at a stroke. It appears that the Russian government has totally endorsed the United Nations track on Libya, saying it was was the right and only way to go and that the dodgy Paris Accord of the 25 July was the basis for peace. 

The Russian diplomat expressed his desire that the next and hopefully final round of UN Peace talks take place in a city in Russia or Chechnya, which would of course to be Russia's advantage. The Russians are planning to invite the UN-backed Government of National Accord Prime Minister Serraj to Moscow in the near future to fill him in on their position as well.

The fact that the Paris Accord produced a document co-signed by Haftar and Serraj that was broken within 24 hours of its signing suggests the event was more a farce than a road map to a peaceful settlement to six years of deadly unrest.

Here is Russia's Press release below. It's worth reading between the lines of what Lavrov says:
14.08.17 - 15:18
Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s meeting with Libyan National Army Commander Khalifa Haftar

On August 14, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov had a meeting at the Foreign Ministry with Libyan National Army Commander Khalifa Haftar, who is paying a working visit to Moscow.

During the talks, the parties in particular focused on the current military and political situation in Libya with an emphasis on the measures being taken to resolve the intra-Libyan crisis through mediation of the international community as well as under the auspices of the UN. In this context, the parties discussed prospects of the intra-Libyan settlement in light of the meeting between Khalifa Haftar and Chairman of the Presidential Council and Prime Minister of the Government of National Accord of Libya Fayez al-Sarraj, held on July 25 in a Parisian suburb.

Russia confirmed the importance of the continuation of the inclusive intra-Libyan dialogue involving members of all major political forces, tribes and regions of the country in order to reach mutually acceptable solutions and to ensure conditions for Libya’s sustainable development as a united, sovereign and independent state. It was also confirmed that Russia is ready to provide further assistance in promoting the political process, in contact with all Libyan parties.
So what has caused Russia to change its strategy and embrace the United Nations Support Mission in Libya's (UNSMIL) past five years of failed talks? What happened and why did Lavrov tell Haftar he should comply with the outdated and defunct UNSMIL Skhirat agreement? Why is Qatari backed Misratan Militia in Doha and all happening at the same time?

Here's my assessment: Moscow sees an opportunity to advance many objectives: to play to the multilateral card but in a slightly different way; to gain bonus points with Europeans and America; and, I think, also to slow down the rush to Libya.

Why do I conclude this? Looking at some of the numbers for their, Libya's, grand plan, it's clear that they can't implement it right away, more like in five years or so. Therefore I deduce that in the meantime, by delaying all progress, the Russians have decided they can manipulate the situation and adapt to inevitable changing circumstances. 

It should be noted that Al-Buyan and Haftar's LNA have clashed many times in various Libyan cities.

So it seems the international game goes on with only the Libyan people not participating.

Galustian is a business and security analyst who has lived in Libya since 2011.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/15/libya-update-russia-changes-the-game/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/15/libya-update-russia-changes-the-game/ Tue, 15 Aug 2017 21:32:05 GMT
Trump Administration Demands Information On Over A Million Visitors To Anti-Trump Website Jonathan Turley http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/15/trump-administration-demands-information-on-over-a-million-visitors-to-anti-trump-website/

A web host called “DreamHost” has gone to court to challenge a demand from the Trump Administration for information on more than 1 million visitors to an anti-Trump website. The demand would covered 1.3 million IP addresses and raises highly troubling free speech and associational concerns. At a minimum, the demand appears wildly too broad and could easily chill political speech for those who oppose this Administration.

DreamHost was hit by the demand after  the Justice Department filed a motion in late July in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. According to the host’s filing, the resulting July 12th warrant demands “names, addresses, telephone numbers and other identifiers, e-mail addresses, business information, the length of service (including start date), means and source of payment for services (including any credit card or bank account number), and information about any domain name registration.” The company had a valid stated concern:
The request from the [Justice Department] demands that DreamHost hand over 1.3 million visitor IP addresses — in addition to contact information, email content, and photos of thousands of people — in an effort to determine who simply visited the website. That information could be used to identify any individuals who used this site to exercise and express political speech protected under the Constitution’s First Amendment. That should be enough to set alarm bells off in anyone’s mind.
The website helped coordinate demonstrations against President Trump in Washington, D.C., on Inauguration Day in January. Some of those protesters turned violent and have faced indictments.  It is clear that the government has a right to investigate those individuals but the government also has a duty to tailor such demands in light of the powerful free speech interests involved in such demonstrations. I see no evidence of such tailoring in this demand and the court should give the warrant close scrutiny in light of its obvious impact on political speech.

A hearing is scheduled in Washington before District of Columbia Superior Court Judge Lynn Leibovitz on Friday about the information request.

Here is the company’s filing: DreamHost filing the United States response to the filing: DreamHost/US filing.

Reprinted with permission from JonathanTurley.org.]]>
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End Of Iran Nuke Deal? What Comes Next... Daniel McAdams http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/15/end-of-iran-nuke-deal-what-comes-next/
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http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/15/end-of-iran-nuke-deal-what-comes-next/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2017/august/15/end-of-iran-nuke-deal-what-comes-next/ Tue, 15 Aug 2017 18:07:18 GMT