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US and Russia Reach Agreement on Syria Weapons -- Can The US Stop Arming the Jihadists Now?

The US and Russia yesterday reached what looks to be a solid agreement on how to proceed with the dismantling of the chemical weapons stores of the Syrian government as well as destruction of Syria's production capabilities. Syria agreed to the Russian-proposed deal (with a little inspiration from US Secretary of State John Kerry) with the understanding that giving up its chemical weapons would avert a US military attack.

The agreement seems full enough of ambiguities regarding the consequences of less than full Syrian compliance to allow the US government some face-saving saber rattling about retaining the option to strike unilaterally, while being vague enough in defining what exactly constitutes non-compliance to make difficult a clear cut case for a UN Chapter 7 use of force resolution. In other words, seemingly win-win.
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Ron Paul Stars at Fatima Peace Conference

The neocons ran their usual smear campaign against Ron Paul when they discovered he would be speaking at a big Catholic gathering on peace. But it was a belly flop for the warmongers. Of course, he kept his word, gave a magnificent speech, and the libelers fell flat on their faces, as always, as he was cheered again and again.
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The Real Elizabeth O'Bagy Scandal

So now we know that Elizabeth O'Bagy, the "expert" cited by Secretary Kerry, Senator McCain, and others as an important impartial source claiming that moderates, not radicals, dominate among Syrian insurgents is a liar. 

Her padded resume was a convenient excuse for her termination from her main job at Kimberly Kagan's Institute for the Study of War (where arch-neocon William Kristol is Chairman). 

However the real scandal is not O'Bagy's falsely claimed PhD, but rather that at her other job, for the Syrian Emergency Task Force, she had been at the enter of a massive propaganda and influence campaign aimed at the American people, pushing the idea that there were moderates in Syria who the US should be supporting. O'Bagy played a key role in that influence campaign and she was being paid to lie about the insurgents by the US government itself! Yes, the real scandal is that O'Bagy was being paid as a State Department contractor to pose as a Syria expert and convince Americans that the Syrian insurgents should be supported.
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US Customs and Border Protection Rolls Out Unconstitutional Searches Far from Borders

US Customs and Border Protection appears to be engaged in the dragnet detaining of general aviation pilots and searching of private airplanes around the country. Expect this program to quickly expand if immigration legislation that increases border-industrial complex funding and manpower becomes law.

As exposed this week in the Toledo Blade, at least 42 members of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association have informed the association that CBP has searched their private airplanes without reasonable suspicion the airplanes were involved in any criminal activity, much less the probable cause and warrant required by the Fourth Amendment of the US Constitution. CBP's new activities also seem to be unrelated to the agency's customs and border protection responsibilities given that AOPA notes many of the planes searched never flew near a US border.
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Is This Why Obama is So Desperate for a Nice Little War?

The president and his coterie of humanitarian interventionist laptop bombers have been so desperate to push the US into another war in the Middle East they have resorted to cooking the US Intelligence Community books and cherry picking second-hand intercepts and other intelligence to a degree that would even have made President George W. Bush blush. 

The "evidence" provided was nothing more than unsupported assertions masked by manufactured outrage and the suggestion that anyone who did not believe them was devoid of a moral compass and quite probably a supporter of Hitler.
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Obama's Defeat on Syrian Strike: The Downside

With the increasing possibility of no vote being held on a Syria attack in the House and Senate, President Obama's uphill battle to win over lawmakers and the US public -- and his probable defeat in Congress -- may have come to an end. 

Those opposed to the administration's plans for an attack on Syria may well have reason to cheer this dramatic turn of events, particularly as the massive loss of life from both the "unbelievably small" Tomahawk strike and the subsequent slaughter of more civilians by the insurgents who would benefit from the strikes will have been -- for now -- avoided.

However welcome is this shift in momentum toward peace, there is also disappointment that, as the corporate media struggles to put a positive spin on the incredibly reckless actions of the US regime, the US administration will not have to answer the most serious questions raised by its assertions on Syria.
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NH City Council Approves Acquiring Tank Despite Public Opposition

The Concord, New Hampshire city council voted tonight to acquire a Lenco BearCat G3 tank. The acquisition passed by a vote of 11 to 4 despite  hundreds of people coming to the city council meeting last month in opposition. Public pressure had also caused the Concord police chief to back off his ludicrous claim that he needed the tank to fend off a terrorism threat posed by the Free State Project and Occupy New Hampshire.
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Mother Agnes Mariam: 'Footage of Syria Chemical Attack is a Fraud'

Mother Agnes Mariam el-Salib, mother superior of St. James Monastery in Qara, Syria, told RT today that she has evidence that the video footage currently being shopped around by Sen. Feinstein and the Obama administration as proof that the Syrian president used gas on his own people is a fraud. Part of the problem with the videos is that they were all taken nearly at the same time as the alleged attack itself. How to gather all the bodies in one place and begin videotaping in some cases before the attack had even taken place?

Mother Agnes Mariam is a Catholic nun who has lived and worked in Syria for the past 20 years. She has been particularly outspoken about the atrocities committed by the US-backed Syrian rebels against Christians and other minorities. Her reputation is impeccable, though she is routinely slandered in Western media.
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Should Administration's Syria Lies be Revealed to Us?

Two very commendable Members of the House of Representatives over the past week have each made some reference to White House manipulation of intelligence in the classified briefings they are feverishly providing to Members of Congress in an effort to peel off enough of the camp opposed to a US attack on Syria. 

Rep. Alan Grayson said in an interview this past week that the intelligence being provided to Members in classified briefings was manipulated and devoid of evidence. Grayson declined to provide examples, explaining that he was constrained from discussing the classified information in the briefings.

Similarly, Rep. Justin Amash Tweeted the other day that "If Americans could read classified docs, they'd be even more against Syria action."
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