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'Minsk II' - What About Foreign Troops in Ukraine?

After a marathon 17 hour negotiation session, the leaders of Russia, Germany, France, and Ukraine agreed on an upgraded ceasefire plan, "Minsk II," that lays out 13 points to be implemented by the west-backed government in Kiev and the independence-seeking regions in eastern Ukraine.

While there is much to be skeptical about in such an agreement -- the devil is always in not just the details but especially the interpretation of the agreement -- there is one point of the plan that appears very much worth pondering.
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Lawrence Wilkerson: Resist 'Warmonger' John McCain’s Call to Arm Ukraine

Interviewed Tuesday on the Real News Network, Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity Academic Board Member Lawrence Wilkerson warned that following the advice of “warmongers like Senator John McCain and his cohorts” to “arm majorly” the Ukraine government is “probably one of the fastest ways” to deepen, widen, and make more profound the Ukraine crisis.

Wilkerson, a professor at the College of William & Mary and former US Army colonel, explains in the interview with host Sharmini Peries the disadvantageous position the US would be entering by choosing military escalation...
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When Barack Called Vladimir...

It must have been like one of those annoying telemarketing calls, ringing up over and over saying the same thing. Today President Obama called Russian president Vladimir Putin to once again harangue him about the Russian "invasion" of Ukraine.

One can even picture Putin, working out with weights or maybe wrestling a bear somewhere, being handed his cell phone and told, "it's Obama."

"Aw man, tell him I'm not here..."

"You gotta take this call..."
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In Praise of Grover Cleveland


Jesse Ventura released this week his new podcast conversation with Ron Paul. It is a pleasure to hear Ventura engage Paul in an unrushed, wide-ranging examination of United States wars and foreign policy, with some discussion of other matters including marijuana and the economy thrown in the mix. One particularly intriguing portion of the conversation comes near the end when Ventura asks Paul — a three-time presidential candidate — a fun, rapid-fire set of questions about what Paul would do as president. Ventura seems surprised, as likely are many listeners, when Paul answers that Grover Cleveland is the president Paul would most like to use as a model for a Paul presidency.
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Andrew Napolitano: In a Free Society You Can Reject the Vaccination 'Scientific Orthodoxy'

From California State Senator Richard Pan (D-Sacramento) proposing legislation to prevent parents of children attending government or private schools from making their own decisions regarding vaccinations, to American Conservative Senior Editor Rod Dreher suggesting the US government should mandate vaccinations, vaccination orthodoxy enforcers are out en masse this week. Fortunately for freedom, Judge Andrew Napolitano has written a new editorial emphatically challenging their threat to individual rights and defending constitutional limitations on the US government’s power.
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Is Privatizing the Afghan War a Feasible Exit Strategy...

...or is it a formula for perpetual war?

President Obama may have told Congress and the American people in his state of the union address that the American combat mission in Afghanistan is over, but that claim is a bit disingenuous, to put it charitably. 

To be sure, the military presence has been reduced, and only 9,800 troops remain in Afghanistan. However, the incoming Secretary of Defense, Ashton Carter, already indicated a willingness to slow down or possibility reverse the ongoing drawdown, should security conditions “degrade."
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King Abdullah's Crocodile Tears Over Burned Pilot

Jordan's King Abdullah reacted emotionally to a video showing the apparent immolation of a Jordanian fighter pilot shot down over Syrian airspace. The Jordanian leader promised to fight ISIS, who killed the pilot, until his military ran "out of fuel and bullets." His vows of revenge even included quoting Clint Eastwood to US lawmakers.

When he arrived back in Jordan from Washington, where he happened to be when the pilot was killed, he swiftly executed three prisoners in an apparent demonstration of resolve.
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Oops They Did it Again: 'Moderate' Syrian Rebels Join Jihadists

President Obama's plan to send as many as 1,000 US military personnel to train the "moderate" rebels seeking to overthrow Syrian president Assad may have run into yet another rough patch. There has been a steady stream of US-backed "moderates" signing on with either ISIS or al-Qaeda (often taking their US-provided weapons with them) and it looks like another flock has flown the coup. 

The Harakat Hazzm group had been on the receiving end of Washington's largesse due to its status as a "non-jihadist" faction fighting to overthrow Assad. It was created last year and had ties to the US-created Free Syrian Army.
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Obama Admits US Role in Ukraine Overthrow

Speaking on RT yesterday, RPI executive director Daniel McAdams wonders whether President Obama spoke a bit too freely in his recent CNN interview. In the interview, the president told CNN that the US government had "brokered a deal to transition power in Ukraine." This admission that the US was playing a role in the February, 2014 coup flies in the face of the dominant west narrative, which is that the overthrow of the Yanukovych government was solely a popular uprising.
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