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Since September 11, 2001, Bin Laden had been mostly an absence. His few video or audio tapes were highly suspect, and speculations about his death had often surfaced. On July 11, 2002, Amir Taheri wrote in the New York Times, "Osama bin Laden is dead. The news first came from sources in Afghanistan and Pakistan... Read More
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A Modern Guernica Enabled by Washington
The Obama Administration sent Secretary of State John Kerry to Israel to insist on a cease fire in Gaza. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responds not only with a no but with a “hell no” and Kerry backed down, but Bibi didn't let it end there, telling Kerry and US Ambassador Daniel Shapiro "don't ever... Read More
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The erotic reliefs of Hindu temples with their gravity-defying and anatomy-challenging positions have found a new modern competitor in the Ukrainian crisis. Each party wants to get the Jews on their side, while claiming that the other side is anti-Jewish and a Jewish puppet at once. This impossible, Kama-Sutraesque position is the result of extremely... Read More
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Pressuring Candidates Even Before They Are Nominated
The major organizations that comprise the Israel Lobby are well known: the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), the American Jewish Committee (AJC), the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations and Christians United For Israel (CUFI). All are well known, benefiting from large budgets and staffs. They are extremely effective,... Read More
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But is it even a friend?
[This is an edited version of a speech given by me at the National Summit to Reassess the Israel-US Special Relationship, which took place at the National Press Center in Washington on March 7th. The all day event included speakers Stephen Walt, Justin Raimondo, Paul Pillar, Jeff Blankfort, Alan Brownfeld, Philip Weiss, Ray McGovern and... Read More
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Bill Keller, editorialist for The NY Times and former executive editor of the paper, has recently penned a strong attack on Vladimir Putin arguing that Putin’s leadership “deliberately distances Russia from the socially and culturally liberal West”, describing the Kremlin’s policies as “laws giving official sanction to the terrorizing of gays and lesbians, the jailing... Read More
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A Diary of Four Wars
The four wars fought in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Syria over the past 12 years have all involved overt or covert foreign intervention in deeply divided countries. In each case the involvement of the West exacerbated existing differences and pushed hostile parties towards civil war. In each country, all or part of the opposition have... Read More
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Eight Exceptional(ly Dumb) American Achievements of the Twenty-First Century
“But when, with modest effort and risk, we can stop children from being gassed to death, and thereby make our own children safer over the long run, I believe we should act. That’s what makes America different. That’s what makes us exceptional. With humility, but with resolve, let us never lose sight of that essential... Read More
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The Palestinians' Munich
It is two months shy of 20 years since Shlomo Gazit made that telling comment after a near hysterical member of San Francisco’s Congregation Beth Shalom ran down an aisle towards him, shouting, “Munich!, Munich!,” implying that he and the Israeli government had participated in a Munich-type sellout by signing the Oslo Agreement with the... Read More
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How the Security State’s Mania for Secrecy Will Create You
Dear Whistleblower, I don’t know who you are or what you do or how old you may be. I just know that you exist somewhere in our future as surely as does tomorrow or next year. You may be young and computer-savvy or a career federal employee well along in years. You might be someone... Read More
Will the history books record these past couple of weeks as the point when the tide finally turned against our interventionist foreign policy? We began September with the Obama Administration on the verge of launching Tomahawk missiles at Syria. The missiles were needed, the administration claimed, to punish the Syrian government for using poison gas... Read More
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Delusional Thinking in the Age of the Single Superpower
In an increasingly phantasmagorical world, here’s my present fantasy of choice: someone from General Keith Alexander’s outfit, the National Security Agency, tracks down H.G. Wells’s time machine in the attic of an old house in London. Britain’s subservient Government Communications Headquarters, its version of the NSA, is paid off and the contraption is flown to... Read More
In 2001, the Patriot Act opened the door to US government monitoring of Americans without a warrant. It was unconstitutional, but most in Congress over my strong objection were so determined to do something after the attacks of 9/11 that they did not seem to give it too much thought. Civil liberties groups were concerned,... Read More
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President Obama announced late last week that the US intelligence community had just determined that the Syrian government had used poison gas on a small scale, killing some 100 people in a civil conflict that has claimed an estimated 100,000 lives. Because of this use of gas, the president claimed, Syria had crossed his “red... Read More
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The Strange History of the Anti-Defamation League
Those were the days when snooping usually meant digging through garbage cans, checking other people’s mailboxes, and primitive phone tapping. How the Anti-Defamation League is doing it today one can only imagine. Over the last three days of April, the ADL celebrated its 100th anniversary in Washington DC in high style with Vice President Joe... Read More
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A War No One is Winning
For the first two years of the Syrian civil war foreign leaders regularly predicted that Bashar al-Assad’s government would fall any day. In November 2011, King Abdullah of Jordan said that the chances of Assad’s surviving were so slim he ought to step down. In December last year, Anders Rasmussen, the Nato secretary general, said:... Read More
This year, spring in France is unusually cold and rainy, following on the heels of a frosty and long winter. Only the last Sunday was different: the sun pushed the clouds away for the first time in months, and immediately the lucid Parisian air warmed up and trees broke out in full bloom. The French... Read More
William Kristol knows what is wrong with the United States. As he wrote recently in the flagship magazine of the neo-conservatives, the Weekly Standard, the problem with the US is that we seem to have lost our appetite for war. According to Kristol, the troubles that have befallen us in the 20th century have all... Read More
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The article below was written for the Journal of 9/11 Studies for the eleventh anniversary of September 11, 2001, the day that terminated accountable government and American liberty. It is posted here with the agreement of the editors. In order to understand the improbability of the government’s explanation of 9/11, it is not necessary to... Read More
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Vlad the Progressive
Is Vladimir Putin really the "KGB thug" the US media makes him out to be? Take a look at this except from a book review in the New York Times and see what you think. Read enough? Okay, so according to the Times, Putin is an ass-kissing, paper-pushing, self-adsorbed, autocratic thug who has dreams of... Read More
In my nearly 20 years experience as a Russian living in the West, I have found that almost all my fellows can be reduced to five basic types: 1) The White Russian; 2) The Sovok Jew; 3) The Egghead Emigre; 4) Natasha Gold-Digger; 5) Putin's Expat. My background and qualifications to write on this topic?... Read More
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Which superpower is more threatened by its “extractive elites”?
The rise of China surely ranks among the most important world developments of the last 100 years. With America still trapped in its fifth year of economic hardship, and the Chinese economy poised to surpass our own before the end of this decade, China looms very large on the horizon. We are living in the... Read More
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CounterPunch Diary
The last time we met Michael Bérubé on this site was back in 2007, and he was up to his neck in a rubbish dump, where I’d placed him, in the company of other promoters of the 2003 war on Iraq: where, I asked, are those parlor warriors now? Had any of them reconsidered their... Read More
A very small yet conscious minority has come to the realization that the current world regime is one giant corporate infomocracy that needs to be terminated with “extreme prejudice”, disengagement being the weapon of choice. The next revolution will not be carried out by mobs of angry people, guerrillas, terrorists or, god forbid, politicians. It... Read More
Full Story of the Taliban's Amazing Jailbreak
It was one of the great prison escapes in history in terms of the ingenuity and perseverance of those involved. It happened at 10pm on April 25 this year in southern Afghanistan when, after five months tunnelling, Taliban diggers finally broke through the concrete floor of a cell in the centre of Sarposa prison on... Read More
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Bin Laden is dead, but his strategy still bleeds the United States.
Osama bin Laden predicted long ago he would die a martyr at the hands of U.S. forces, and so it has come to pass. Americans are rejoicing that the man credited with the monstrous crime of 9/11 has been killed after a 10-year search. Neocons and far-right Republicans claim it was all thanks to the... Read More
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Egyptians revolted against American rule as well as Mubarak’s.
The Mideast house of cards so laboriously constructed by Washington over the past four decades threatens to collapse. One can’t help but be reminded of the revolts across Eastern Europe in 1989 that began the fall of the Soviet Empire. Now it may be the turn of America’s Mideast empire, an empire constructed of Arab... Read More
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“America’s strategic and economic interests in the Mideast and Muslim world are being threatened by the agony in Palestine, which inevitably invites terrorist attacks against US citizens and property.”
NEW YORK – Ever since 9/11, readers keep asking me my views on these attacks. I have been barraged with emails until my head spins with engineering studies about melting steel, controlled explosions, claims about nefarious plots, and wreckage analysis. One of the most colorful theories comes from Gen. Hamid Gul, former director of Pakistan’s... Read More
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"Failed State" Myths
Why has Lebanon ended up as the graveyard of so many invaders? Israelis used to say in the 1960s that one of their military bands would be enough to conquer the country. Sometimes, prior to Israel and Egypt agreeing a peace in 1979, they would add archly that “I don’t know which will be the... Read More
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The “war hero” candidate buried information about POWs left behind in Vietnam.
Eighteen months ago, TAC publisher Ron Unz discovered an astonishing account of the role the 2008 Republican presidential nominee, John McCain, had played in suppressing information about what happened to American soldiers missing in action in Vietnam. Below, we present in full Sydney Schanberg’s explosive story. John McCain, who has risen to political prominence on... Read More
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A Crisis in U.S. / Israeli Relations? Sure. But ...
If the State Department had issued travel advisory warnings to US government officials about to travel to Israel, Vice President Joe Biden would have no doubt ignored them. A better friend to Israel could not have been found in the 36 years that Biden represented Delaware in the US Senate and there was speculation that... Read More
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The gagged whistleblower goes on the record.
Sibel Edmonds has a story to tell. She went to work as a Turkish and Farsi translator for the FBI five days after 9/11. Part of her job was to translate and transcribe recordings of conversations between suspected Turkish intelligence agents and their American contacts. She was fired from the FBI in April 2002 after... Read More
"They Can't Even Protect Themselves, So What Can They Do For Me?"
When President Hamid Karzai drove to Kabul airport to fly to America earlier this week, the centre of the Afghan capital was closed down by well-armed security men, soldiers and policemen. On his arrival in Washington he will begin two days of meetings, starting today, with President Barack Obama and Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari... Read More
Today’s CIA serves contractors and bureaucrats—not the nation.
Suppose you were given the dark mission of spending $50 billion a year to create a global intelligence organization that would be minimally effective. You would want to keep 90 percent of the employees in their home country and incentivize senior staff to stay “close to the flagpole” to enhance their promotion prospects. Training costs... Read More
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Stephen J. Sniegoski’s The Transparent Cabal would be the book of the year in a less manipulated society than our own. I suggest as much in my introduction; and former Congressman Paul Findley, who wrote the foreword, lavishes equally high praise on this monument to diligence. Almost as interesting as the book’s content are certain... Read More
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While other top brass played press agents for the administration’s war, William Odom told the truth about Iraq—though few listened.
Much as the capital loves ceremony, Washington won’t pause on Sept. 8 when Lt. Gen. William Odom is laid to rest at Arlington Cemetery. While he is worthy of his laurels, he did not court the favor of the Beltway political class. Instead, he disdained their blindness to history, their partisan fixations, their herd mentality.... Read More
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Hustler Magazine, July 2008 June 8, 1967 — the fourth day of the Six Day War between Israel and Egypt, Syria and Jordan — was a beautiful day in the Mediterranean. The USS Liberty was in international waters off the coast of Egypt. Israeli aircraft had flown over the USS Liberty in the morning and... Read More
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Pay no mind to the Mossad agent on the line.
After Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard was sentenced to life in prison in 1986, the U.S. negotiated an understanding with Israel—a “gentlemen’s agreement” —stipulating that neither nation would thenceforth conduct espionage operations in the other’s territory without consent. But the agreement was a sham from the beginning. The Israeli government didn’t even honor its commitments in... Read More
"All Hell is Breaking Loose with Muqtada" Warlord: the Rise of Muqtada al-Sadr
In early March 2004, I went to visit the office of al-Hawza, Muqtada al-Sadr's newspaper in Baghdad. There were only a few staff there, but they were relaxed and friendly. I talked to a young man called Hussein who was a student in the French department at Mustansiriyah University on Palestine Street near Sadr City,... Read More
Once as a colonial project, now as a moral playground, the ancient continent remains the object of Great Power maneuvering
George W. Bush’s seven-day, five-country trip around Africa generated much surprised comment about how popular our president is over there. The leaders of the nations Bush visited beamed with pride through their photo-ops. In Tanzania, local artists had emblazoned the president’s smiling face on fabric, which was made into dresses and smocks worn by citizens... Read More
FBI whistleblower Sibel Edmonds spills her secrets.
Most Americans have never heard of Sibel Edmonds, and if the U.S. government has its way, they never will. The former FBI translator turned whistleblower tells a chilling story of corruption at Washington’s highest levels—sale of nuclear secrets, shielding of terrorist suspects, illegal arms transfers, narcotics trafficking, money laundering, espionage. She may be a first-rate... Read More
Critics of the Iraq War weren't really "anti-Semites"
Success has many fathers, but failure is an orphan. This explains why so many of those who leapt on the bandwagon, or led the parade, that marched American soldiers off to war in Iraq are now disclaiming paternity, or screaming for blood tests. (No matter that many of these same folks are priming the pumps... Read More
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Growing references by the US and Israel to the Muslim Middle East as a collection of failed states are part of the propaganda campaign to strip legitimacy from Muslim states and set them up for attack. These accusations spring from the hubris of many Israelis, who see themselves as “God’s Chosen People,” a guarantee of... Read More
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Jewish-American anti-Zionist journalist
Jeffrey Blankfort A few weeks before Israel's latest assault on Lebanon, SF-IMC interviewed local journalist, historian, photographer, radio producer, and anti-Zionist activist, Jeffery Blankfort. For a variety of reasons, technical and other, we are only just now getting around to publishing it. We apologize for the delay. SF-IMC: Tell us how your personal history shaped... Read More
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The Age of Irrationality
Where was the American left in the campaign that ended in recapture of both houses of Congress by the Democrats on November 7, 2006? Was it in the streets, fomenting opposition to the war in Iraq? Not at all. The antiwar movement has been inert for months. When I was asked to give the keynote... Read More
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The bankruptcy of the mainstream Left as illustrated by Stephen Zunes
The antiwar Left would prefer that old-style American imperialism and the quest for oil had caused the Iraq War. They are the preferred enemies of the Left. They are the traditional villains. And they are safe villains. Mentioning Israel as a culprit would cause problems: it would lose support for the Left among activist Jews,... Read More
Bloodbath Beyond the Green Zone
Arbil, Iraq. The gap between Iraq of the Green Zone and Iraq as it really is grows ever wider. On 20 May, five months after the election of parliament, Iraqis were told they had a new government boasting a minister for tourism but, despite the war raging across the country, no ministers of interior or... Read More
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CounterPunch Diary
For the past few weeks a sometimes comic debate has simmering in the American press, focused on the question of whether there is an Israeli lobby, and if so, just how powerful is it? I would have thought that to ask whether there's an Israeli lobby here is a bit like asking whether there's a... Read More
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Israel lobbying
The elephant in the room that no one is supposed to mention is the role of the supporters of Israel in shaping American foreign policy in the Middle East. Their role has become especially apparent with the American attack on Iraq and the subsequent American policy toward Iran and Syria, in all of which the... Read More
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A number of readers have asked me when did I undergo my epiphany, abandon right-wing Reaganism and become an apostle of truth and justice. I appreciate the friendly sentiment, but there is a great deal of misconception in the question. When I saw that the neoconservative response to 9/11 was to turn a war against... Read More
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The “war hero” candidate buried information about POWs left behind in Vietnam.
While other top brass played press agents for the administration’s war, William Odom told the truth about Iraq—though few listened.
Which superpower is more threatened by its “extractive elites”?