Doing Advance Work

News that doesn't receive the necessary attention.

Sunday, July 22, 2018

All-too apparently President Trump is controlled by the US War Party and has very little freedom to exercise his democratic mandate. That is a damning indictment on the charade of American formal democracy-Editorial, Strategic Culture Foundation, 7/20/18

All-too apparently President Trump has actually very little freedom to exercise his democratic mandate. That is a damning indictment on the charade of American formal democracy. A president is elected partly on the basis of peaceful engagement, but the unelected powers-that-be have another agenda of conflict which they are pursuing come hell or high water....The most disturbing aspect was the recurring slander denigrating Trump as a “traitor”."

7/20/18, “America’s Derangement Syndrome a Danger to World Peace,” Strategic Culture Editorial 

“It is significant that Presidents Putin and Trump have both spoken out against “haters” among America’s political establishment who would rather see conflict between Russia and the United States instead of a normalization of bilateral relations. 

Following their landmark, successful summit this week in Helsinki, Putin and Trump separately made public comments deploring the hostile hysterical reaction emanating from broad sections of the US political establishment and its dutiful, controlled news media. 

Speaking in Moscow to his diplomatic corps, President Putin warned that there were “powerful forces” within the US which are ready to sacrifice the interests of their country and indeed the interests of world peace in order to pursue selfish ambitions. 

For his part, Trump also slammed opponents in the US who “hated” to see him having a good meeting with Putin. They would rather see a major confrontation with Russia, even if that could lead to war,” said the American president. 

That’s it in a nutshell. Rather than welcoming the opening of a cordial dialogue between the US and Russia, the American political establishment seems to desire the deepening of already dangerous tensions between the world’s two nuclear superpowers. If that’s not deranged, then what is? 

Significantly, the hostile reaction was overwhelmingly on the American side. Russians, by and large, welcomed the long-overdue summit between Trump and Putin, and the potential beginning of a new spirit of dialogue and partnership on a range of urgent global problems. Problems including arms control, nuclear proliferation, and working out political settlement to conflicts in the Middle East, Ukraine and the Korea Peninsula. 

Few people would believe that these problems can be resolved easily. But the main thing is that the leaders of the US and Russia are at least attempting to open a dialogue for understanding and political progress. That in itself is a breakthrough from the impasse in bilateral relations which have frozen into a new Cold War since the previous US administration. 

We dare say that most citizens of the world would also endorse this effort by Trump and Putin at improving the relations between the US and Russia. 

Significantly too, according to recent polls, most ordinary Americans seem to be agreeable or neutral about Trump’s diplomatic engagement with Russia. According to a Gallup poll out this week, the vast majority of US citizens are far more concerned by economic woes than they are by anything untoward in American-Russian relations. 

Thus, what we are seeing in the explosion of hostility towards the Trump-Putin summit is twofold. It is an American phenomenon, and secondly, it is an angst that animates only the political class in Washington and the news media corporations.

This constituency, it is fair to say, is an elite faction within the US, albeit extremely powerful, made up of Washington politicos, the state intelligence apparatus, the corporate media and think tanks, and the deep state establishment of imperial planners and strategists. In short, this constituency is what some observers call the “War Party” that transcends the US ruling class. 

Any reasonable person would have to welcome the friendly rapport engendered between Trump and Putin, and at least their initial commitment to working together on major matters of global security. The dangerous impasse of recent years in which dialogue was absent must be overcome for the sake of world peace. 

Nevertheless, what has become crystal clear this week following the Helsinki summit is the “War Party” within the US is more determined than ever to sabotage any rapprochement with Russia. 

No sooner had Trump returned to the US, he was assailed with a tidal wave of vilification for having met Putin in a mutual, agreeable manner. The most disturbing aspect was the recurring slander denigrating Trump as a “traitor”. The hysterical name-calling was conveyed by all the major news media, citing former intelligence officials and politicians from both Democrat and Republican parties. 

Which again shows that in the US there is really only one party, the War Party. 

President Trump was evidently forced into making an embarrassing U-turn over his views expressed in Helsinki. He made an unconvincing disavowal of statements made alongside Putin. Trump had been pilloried for appearing to dismiss allegations of Russian interference in the US elections while he was in Helsinki. Within 24 hours, he was forced into making a retraction, saying that he did – kind of – believe that Russia had meddled in US democracy. 

What Trump was subjected to by the US establishment was akin to the worst years of McCarthyite Red-Baiting as seen during the Cold War in the 1950s and 60s, when Americans were mercilessly humiliated and ostracized for being “Communist sympathizers”. Today, official American paranoia is back with a vengeance. In truth, it never went away. 

To be fair to Trump he has not completely capitulated to the American derangement syndrome. He has since said that he is looking forward to holding a second meeting with his Russian counterpart and continuing their promises of partnership as announced in Helsinki. 

However, it is instructive that the American president is, in effect, being held hostage by powerful elements in the US ruling class who view any kind of detente with Moscow as an unforgivable betrayal. 

Trump’s instincts are correct that the whole so-called Russia-gate mania is a phony contrivance. That has been orchestrated by the US establishment based on its refusal to accept Trump’s democratic mandate, as well as being based on an abiding hostility towards Russia as an independent world power. 

The object lesson here is that the scope for improving US-Russia relations is limited, in spite of Trump’s favorable personal inclinations. 

An entrenched animosity towards Russia remains among the American War Party, and the current president has evidently little room for implementing his avowed policy of normalizing relations. 

Russia therefore cannot place too much faith in making progress towards peaceful relations, because all-too apparently President Trump has actually very little freedom to exercise his democratic mandate. That is a damning indictment on the charade of American formal democracy. A president is elected partly on the basis of peaceful engagement, but the unelected powers-that-be have another agenda of conflict which they are pursuing come hell or high water. 

What’s more, the American derangement syndrome is becoming even more virulent, as can be adjudged from this week’s hysterical backlash over the successful Helsinki summit. 

Trump’s willingness for dialogue with Russia is a welcome development. But the far more disturbing development is the full-tilt belligerence and derangement on display among the American political class. This American political chizophrenia is a clear and present danger to world peace. American citizens are as much a victim of the madness as are Russians and the rest of the world. 

One positive aspect of the new phase of Cold War is that before it was largely concealed, and deceived, as a simplistic bifurcated confrontation of Americans versus Russians. Today it is evidently a situation of an American deranged elite versus the rest of the world, with the latter including ordinary American citizens who have much more to gain from standing in solidarity with Russian citizens.” 
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Comment: Ultimately this about enslavement of US taxpayers. The Endless Unwinnable War Industry cannot exist without unlimited access to US taxpayer cash. Being born in the US today means lifelong enslavement to the Endless Unwinnable War Industry. This has been the case for over a century, since World War I. It’s finally out in the open.








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Saturday, July 21, 2018

Though US political class is fine with 24/7 propaganda hyping nuclear war, thousands of ordinary Americans aren’t and are adding their voices-Norman Solomon…But the anti-Trump people and the Pro-War Industry are getting great results working together-Caroline Glick

Article references alleged Russian hacking of US elections, but it turns out Russians have made no effort to “hack” US elections per FBI Director Christopher Wray on July 18, 2018 in response to Lester Holt question about Russian activity vs US elections: “We haven’t yet seen an effort to target specific election infrastructure at this time.”…The Aspen Institute, Streamed live on July 18, 2018.″ “FBI Director [Christopher Wray] describes the Bureau’s role in national security generally and cyberterrorism and counterintelligence specifically. Christopher Wray, Director, FBI. Moderator: Lester Holt, Anchor, NBC Nightly News,” Join at 8 min., 54 seconds: Wray:The intelligence community’s assessment has not changed, my view has not changed, which is that Russia attempted to interfere in the last election. And that it continues to engage in malign influence operations to this day.”…Lester Holt: Aimed at our political system? Wray: Aimed at sowing discord and divisiveness in this country. We haven’t yet seen an effort to target specific election infrastructure at this time.”… 

7/16/18,Climb Down From the Summit of Hostile Propaganda, Norman Solomon, Truthdig.com 

Throughout the day before the summit in Helsinki, the lead story on the New York Times home page stayed the same: “Just by Meeting With Trump, Putin Comes Out Ahead.” 

The Sunday headline was in harmony with the tone of U.S. news coverage overall. As for media commentary, the Washington Post was in the dominant groove as it editorialized that Russia’s President Vladimir Putin is “an implacably hostile foreign adversary.” 

Contempt for diplomacy with Russia is now extreme. Mainline U.S. journalists and top Democrats often bait President Donald Trump in zero-sum terms. No doubt Hillary Clinton thought she was sending out an applause line in her tweet Sunday night: “Question for President Trump as he meets Putin: Do you know which team you play for?” 

A bellicose stance toward Russia has become so routine and widespread that we might not give it a second thoughtand that makes it all the more hazardous…. 

Since early 2017, the U.S. mass media have laid it on thick with the rough political equivalent of a painting technique known as chiaroscuro—“the use of strong contrasts between light and dark, usually bold contrasts affecting a whole composition,” in the words of Wikipedia. The Russiagate frenzy is largely about punching up contrasts between the United States (angelic and victimized) and Russia (sinister and victimizer)…. 

Often the biggest lies involve what remains unsaid. For instance, U.S. media rarely mention such key matters as the promise-breaking huge expansion of NATO to Russia’s borders since the fall of the Berlin Wall, or the brazen U.S. intervention in Russia’s pivotal 1996 presidential election, or the U.S. government’s 2002 withdrawal from the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, or the more than 800 U.S. military bases overseas—in contrast to Russia’s nine. 

For human survival on this planet, an overarching truth appears in an open letter published last week by The Nation magazine: “No political advantage, real or imagined, could possibly compensate for the consequences if even a fraction of U.S. and Russian arsenals were to be utilized in a thermonuclear exchange. The tacit pretense that the worsening of U.S.-Russian relations does not worsen the odds of survival for the next generations is profoundly false.” 

The initial 26 signers of the open letter “Common Ground: For Secure Elections and True National Security included Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg, writer and feminist organizer Gloria Steinem, former UN ambassador Gov. Bill Richardson, political analyst Noam Chomsky, former covert CIA operations officer Valerie Plame, activist leader Rev. Dr. William Barber II, filmmaker Michael Moore, former Nixon White House counsel John Dean, Russia scholar Stephen F. Cohen, former U.S. ambassador to the USSR Jack F. Matlock Jr., Pulitzer Prize-winning writers Alice Walker and Viet Thanh Nguyen, The Nation editor Katrina vanden Heuvel, former senator Adlai Stevenson III, and former longtime House Armed Services Committee member Patricia Schroeder. (I was also one of the initial signers.) 

Since its release five days ago, the open letter has gained support from a petition already signed by 30,000 people. The petition campaign aims to amplify the call for protecting the digital infrastructure of the electoral process that is now “vulnerable to would-be hackers based anywhere” [Not according to FBI Director Christopher Wray: “We haven’t yet seen an effort to target specific election infrastructure at this time.”]—and for taking “concrete steps… to ease tensions between the nuclear superpowers.” 

We need a major shift in the U.S. approach toward Russia. Clearly the needed shift won’t be initiated by the Republican or Democratic leaders in Congress; it must come from Americans who make their voices heard. The lives—and even existence—of future generations are at stake in the relationship between Washington and Moscow. 

Many of the petition’s grassroots signers have posted comments along with their names. Here are a few of my favorites: 

*  From Nevada: “We all share the same planet! We better learn how to do it safely or face the consequences of blowing ourselves up!”
*  From New Mexico: “The earth will not survive a nuclear war. The weapons we have today are able to cause much more destruction than those of previous eras. We must find a way to common ground.”
From Massachusetts: “It is imperative that we take steps to protect the sanctity of our elections and to prevent nuclear war anywhere on the earth.”
*  From Kentucky: “Secure elections are a fundamental part of a democratic system. But this could become meaningless in the event of thermonuclear war.”
*  From California: “There is only madness and hubris in talk of belligerence toward others, especially when we have such dangerous weapons and human error has almost led to our annihilation already more than once in the past half-century.” 

Yet a wide array of media outlets, notably the “Russiagate”-obsessed network MSNBC, keeps egging on progressives to climb toward peaks of anti-Russian jingoism. The line of march is often in virtual lockstep with GOP hyper-hawks like Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham. The incessant drumbeat is in sync with what Martin Luther King Jr. called “the madness of militarism.” 

Meanwhile, as Dr. King said, “We still have a choice today: nonviolent coexistence or violent coannihilation.””
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Added: The problem with playing domestic politics on the international scene is that doing so has real consequences for international security and for US national interests….If there is anything to criticize about Trump’s summit with Putin it is that it came too late. It should have happened a year ago. That it happened this week speaks not to Trump’s eagerness to meet Putin but to the urgency of the hour.”… 

7/20/18, Who Is Betraying America?” Caroline Glick, realclearpolitics.com 

The problem with playing domestic politics on the international scene is that doing so has real consequences for international security and for US national interests. 

Consider, for instance, Europe’s treatment of Trump. 

Europe is economically dependent on trade with the US and strategically dependent on NATO. So why are the Europeans so open about their hatred of Trump and their rejection of his trade policies, his policy towards Iran and his insistence that they pay their fair share for their own defense? 

Why did EU Council President Donald Tusk attack Trump with such contempt and condescension in Brussels? Tusk, who chairs the meetings of EU leaders, is effectively the EU president. And the day before last week’s NATO conference he chided Trump for criticizing Europe’s low defense spending. 

“America,” he said with a voice dripping with contempt, “appreciate your allies. After all you don’t have that many.” 

That of course, was news to the countries of Asia, Africa, Latin America, Europe and the Middle East that depend on America and work diligently to develop and maintain strong ties to Washington. 

Leaving aside the ridiculousness of his remarks, where did Tusk get the idea that it is reasonable to speak so scornfully to an American president? 

Where did EU’s foreign policy commissioner Federica Mogherini get the idea that it is okay for her to work urgently and openly to undermine legally constituted US sanctions against Iran for its illicit nuclear weapons program? 

The answer of course is that they got a green light to adopt openly anti-American policies from the forces in the US that have devoted their energies since Trump’s election nearly two years ago to delegitimizing his victory and his presidency. Those calling Trump a traitor empowered the Europeans to defy the US on every issue. 

Trump’s opponents’ unsubstantiated allegation that his campaign colluded with Russia during the 2016 elections has constrained Trump’s ability to perform his duties. 

Consider his relations with Putin. If there is anything to criticize about Trump’s summit with Putin it is that it came too late. It should have happened a year ago. That it happened this week speaks not to Trump’s eagerness to meet Putin but to the urgency of the hour.”...
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Comment: Re: Mr. Solomon’s article, I appreciate the effort but the people running the US clearly don’t care about nuclear annihilation. To them, life isn’t worth living unless US taxpayers are silenced and formally enslaved from birth to the Endless Unwinnable War Industry. They don’t care that they may die. All they know is we must be silenced, and they can’t think of any other way to achieve that result. 




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Friday, July 20, 2018

NATO’s purpose ended with fall of Soviet Union. Instead of gracefully retiring, NATO expanded and failed to include Russia. This was a tragic mistake, unnecessarily provocative, and ruined West’s chances of bringing Russia into the fold-George Kennan, 1998

7/18/18, “The Day “Strategic Ambiguity” Died,” macromon.wordpress.com 

NATO Expansion Was A Mistake” 

“Before going further let us state for the record, we believe the expansion of NATO without including Russia was a big mistake, unnecessarily provocative, and ruined the West chances of bringing Russia “in.” 

With the fall of the Soviet Union and the sudden shift in the military balance in Europe in the early 1990’s, NATO faced an existential crisis.  Rather than winding down, the conventional wisdom was that NATO must goout of area or out of business.” Bureaucracies don’t die easily. 

The Russian backlash to NATO’s expansion was devastating. In 1991, 80 percent of the Russian public had a favorable opinion of the United States.  After the expansion of the alliance and bombing of Serbia in 1999 without UN Security Council authorization,  Russians had a negative view of America.  In 2000, Vladimir Putin was elected president of the Russian Federation. 

George Kennan 

Listen to George Kennan in 1998, the architect of America’s successful containment of the Soviet Union and one of America’s great statesmen of the 20th century, who was “present at the creation” of NATO, and authored the anonymous 1947 Foreign Affairs article, signed ”X,” defining America’s cold-war policy for 40 years, 

”I think it is the beginning of a new cold war,” said Mr. Kennan from his Princeton home. ”I think the Russians will gradually react quite adversely and it will affect their policies. I think it is a tragic mistake. There was no reason for this whatsoever. No one was threatening anybody else. This expansion would make the Founding Fathers of this country turn over in their graves. We have signed up to protect a whole series of countries, even though we have neither the resources nor the intention to do so in any serious way. [NATO expansion] was simply a light-hearted action by a Senate that has no real interest in foreign affairs.” – NY Times, 1998 

So, to some extent, we agree on many of the philosophical tenets that we think what President Trump believes. The problem lies in implementation and execution. 

Just as, we believe, trade disagreements should be settled in a rules-based multilateral framework, such at the WTO. 

We  also agree with another American president about being suspicious and trying to avoid  “foreign entanglements. The web of foreign entanglements among European nations led to World War I, a war that nobody wanted. 

The nation which indulges toward another an habitual hatred or an habitual fondness is in some degree a slave. It is a slave to its animosity or to its affection, either of which is sufficient to lead it astray from its duty and its interest. Antipathy in one nation against another disposes each more readily to offer insult and injury, to lay hold of slight causes of umbrage, and to be haughty and intractable when accidental or trifling occasions of dispute occur. – George Washington””
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Added: More on George Kennan, for those interested: An interview with George Kennan 

“This is a transcript of the interview Kennan gave to CNN for the Cold War’ series in May and June of 1996.” 

“George F. Kennan was the chief architect of the policy of containment and one of the most influential figures of the Cold War. Trained as a diplomat, Kennan began his career in Moscow in 1933. He served there off and on for the next three decades. In Moscow in 1946, he drafted his famous “Long Telegram,” a document that sounded the alarm over Soviet expansionism and became a prescient warning about the coming Cold War.”... 

On why the United States viewed the Soviet Union as an enemy after World War II:” 

“We had accustomed ourselves, through our wartime experience, to having a great enemy before us who had to be considered capable and desirous of doing everything that was evil and bad for us. And as our attention shifted then from Hitler’s Germany to what was now the other greatest military power in Europe, we began to attach these sort of extremist views to Russia, too. 

We like to have our enemies in the singular, our friends, if you will, multiple. But the enemy must always be a center, he must be totally evil, he must wish all the terrible things that could happen to uswhether [that] made sense from his standpoint or not. … Carrying wartime extremisms into a period which was nominally one of peace … is one of the great fundamental causes of the Cold War…. 

On whether he feels satisfied in the success of the policy of containment, of which he was one of the principal architects: 

Yes, I do, because if the alternative was to have a great military conflagration, I could see no good coming out of this. Regardless of who considered himself to be the victor. 

You must remember my view of warfare: that everybody is a defeated power with modern warfare, with modern weapons. I don’t know any more to say about that. My thoughts about containment were of course distorted by the people who understood it and pursued it exclusively as a military concept; and I think that that, as much as any other cause, led to [the] 40 years of unnecessary, fearfully expensive and disoriented process of the Cold War.””
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Added: From Kennan NY Times obituary, 3/18/2005: 

Mr. Kennan was the man to whom the White House and the Pentagon turned when they sought to understand the Soviet Union after World War II. He conceived the cold-war policy of containment, the idea that the United States should stop the global spread of Communism by diplomacy, politics, and covert action — by any means short of war. 

As the State Department’s first policy planning chief in the late 1940’s, serving Secretary of State George C. Marshall, Mr. Kennan was an intellectual architect of the Marshall Plan, which sent billions of dollars of American aid to nations devastated by World War II. At the same time, he conceived a secret “political warfare” unit that aimed to roll back Communism, not merely contain it.”…
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Added: US oligarchy has become the Mafia: “In the years following the end of the Soviet Union, the idea that Russia was “ours to lose” gained wide currency in American foreign policy circles. The idea that Russia is an enemy culture in addition to a geopolitical adversary has since gained wide purchase among American media and political elites. As one prominent commentator put it: “Russia has been targeting the American right.”” 

May 2018, “The Cold War Culture War,” James Carden, American Affairs Journal (“Carden served as an advisor to the U.S.-Russia Bilateral Presidential Commission at the State Department in 2011–12”)
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Added: Believing themselves entitled, US oligarchs plundered Russia: Bill Clinton Harvard cronies, George Soros, and Harvard Institute for International Development destroyed Russia’s wealth and its middle class. Hundreds of millions of US tax dollars were also lost through lavish USAID grants-May 14, 1998, “The Harvard Boys Do Russia, The Nation, Janine R. Wedel





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7 country clubs in Country Club Republican John Boehner's Ohio district have closed since 2012. GM plant closing left district bereft of execs who could afford the dues. Mercifully, Boehner retired in 2015-Wall St. Journal, 7/19/18

In 1992, the [Ohio 8th] district was represented by Republican John Boehner, the former House speaker. He voted for the North American Free Trade Agreement, and helped pave the way for the Trans-Pacific Partnership….Seven area golf courses, long establishment Republican strongholds, have closed since 2012. Without the GM plant, “there is no middle-level management that can afford the dues structure.””… 

7/19/18, “America’s Factory Towns, Once Solidly Blue, Are Now a GOP Haven, Wall St. Journal, Bob Davis and Dante Chinni (print ed., July 20) 

“A generation ago, Democrats represented much of the country’s manufacturing base. Now, it’s in GOP hands, a swing remaking both parties 

The Republican Party has become the party of blue-collar America. 

After the 1992 election, 15 of the 20 most manufacturing-intensive Congressional districts in America were represented by Democrats. Today, all 20 are held by Republicans.... 

These changes are evident in Ohio’s Eighth Congressional district, long a Republican bastion in the Cincinnati suburbs. 

In 1992, the district was represented by Republican John Boehner, the former House speaker. He voted for the North American Free Trade Agreement, and helped pave the way for the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a trade deal among the U.S. and 11 Pacific-Rim nations that Mr. Trump pulled out of on his first workday in office.

From 1990, when Mr. Boehner was elected, to 2015, the percentage of the workforce employed in manufacturing in his district declined from 30% to 21%. It moved up in the ranking of manufacturing intensive districts, from No. 27 to No. 12, because the country’s concentration of manufacturing workers declined even more. General Motors Co. closed a nearby factory in 2008 that employed 2,400 people. NCR Corp. moved its headquarters out of the area in 2009. 

Seven area golf courses, long establishment Republican strongholds, have closed since 2012. Without the GM plant, “there is no middle-level management that can afford the dues structure anymore,” said Steve Jurick, executive director of the Miami Valley Golf Association. 

Mr. Boehner retired in 2015, as the growing power of populist conservatives in the House made his caucus more difficult to manage. His successor is Republican Warren Davidson, a member of the Freedom Caucus that bedeviled Mr. Boehner.

Though he has criticized across-the-board tariffs, he has supported Mr. Trump’s tariffs on Chinese goods. Like Mr. Trump, Mr. Davidson faults the WTO for failing to rein in China, whose imports have battered the district’s many small metal fabrication plants.

At a meeting with local business leaders in May, he likened trade to a basketball game. “They are not calling fouls and no one is taking free throws,” he told the group. “I’m glad President Trump is making them call fouls.”

The message goes over well with factory owners and workers in the district.

A lot of our workers voted for Trump,” says Neil Douglas, a Democrat who is president of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers in Middletown, Ohio.The Democrats around here—sometimes we do feel like the party left us.”"

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Added: That Putin is amazing:

18 Ohio democrat precinct captains flipped and crossed party lines to vote in a March 2016 Republican primary for Trump. This was 4 months before a single email had been released!:

4/5/2017, "Democrats still ignoring the people who could have helped them defeat Trump, Ohio party leaders say," Washington Post, William Wan

"In Mahoning County - a Democratic stronghold decimated by the manufacturing industry's decline - [County Democrat Party Chair David] Betras was seeing GOP yard signs suddenly popping up. During the primaries [March 15, 2016], he learned that 18 of his own Democratic precinct captains had crossed party lines to vote for Trump. Some areas had to print extra Republican primary ballots just to keep up with the demand.

"That's when I knew something was wrong," he said.

He warned Clinton that she had lost all credibility with working-class voters by waffling on trade and offering tepid solutions."...
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FBI Director Christopher Wray says Russians have made no effort to target US election infrastructure-Aspen Institute interview, July 18, 2018

The Aspen Institute, Streamed live on Jul 18, 2018″ 

“FBI Director [Christopher Wray] describes the Bureau’s role in national security generally and cyberterrorism and counterintelligence specifically. Christopher Wray, Director, FBI. Moderator: Lester Holt, Anchor, NBC Nightly News,” Join at 8 min., 54 seconds: 

Wray:The intelligence community’s assessment has not changed, my view has not changed, which is that Russia attempted to interfere in the last election. And that it continues to engage in malign influence operations to this day.”

Lester Holt: Aimed at our political system?

Wray: Aimed at sowing discord and divisiveness in this country. We haven’t yet seen an effort to target specific election infrastructure at this time.”…





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Local US governments have long invited foreign interference in their elections. Illegal aliens have been invited to vote in school board elections in NY City and Chicago. Some Maryland towns welcome illegal alien voting in local elections-Election Law Society




7/20/18, “Posted by u/XR29005 11 hours ago 

“Tucker: “Why are the people mad about foreign influence in Americans elections (Russians) encouraging foreign influence in American elections (illegals given right to vote in San Francisco)“.”

7/19/18, “Non-citizens, illegal immigrants now may register to vote in San Francisco school board elections,” Fox News, Lukas Mikelionis 

“The city of San Francisco this week began allowing non-citizens, including illegal immigrants, to register to vote in the November election for the city school board. 

The effort follows the city’s passage of a 2016 ballot measure that gave the right to vote in school board elections to non-U.S. citizens over age 18 who live in San Francisco and have children under age 19, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

The measure was approved by a majority of San Francisco’s eligible voters, but after the first two attempts failed…. 

A similar initiative of giving limited voting rights has also reportedly been approved in Chicago and multiple cities in Maryland and Massachusetts.”… 

Added: Illegal alien voting in the US has been in place for many years in New York City, Chicago, and some Maryland towns. NY City illegal aliens were allowed to vote in school board elections until 2002 when school boards were dissolved:

2/5/18, Back to School: Noncitizen Parents in San Francisco Able to Vote in School Board Elections,” William and Mary Law School, Joseph Montgomery 

Legislation allowing noncitizens to vote in limited circumstances has existed in the United States for some time.  Chicago grants all parents the right to vote in local school council elections, and several towns in Maryland allow noncitizens to take part in local voting. New York City allowed noncitizens to vote in local school board elections until their school boards were dissolved in 2002.”…  




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As to the so-called “intelligence community,” Trump has been set up, framed and relentlessly persecuted by this “community” that features at least one admitted illegal hacker (Brennan), and two admitted liars (Brennan and Clapper)-Sidney Powell, Former Federal Prosecutor, 7/19/18

7/19/18, Trump Has Been Set Up, Framed And Relentlessly Persecuted By The American Intelligence Community,” Daily Caller, Sidney Powell, Former Federal Prosecutor 

“The frenzied furor and fomented outrage over President Donald Trump’s reluctance to express blind trust for our “intelligence community” defy reason and reality. In their choreographed cries of contempt for Mr. Trump, the “left’s” increasingly shrill proclamations of political apocalypse make “Chicken Little” look rational. At least we’ve moved on from the impending annihilation from the nuclear war with North Korea. 

Power is the only thing leftists worship, and they are unraveling in front of our eyes without it. They can’t control Mr. Trump. That alone drives them insane. They have no policies that work. Cities and states they control are criminal sanctuaries and bankrupt cesspools. Check out San Francisco, Portland and Chicago. 

Each of the president’s remarkable accomplishments — from unprecedented high employment, our booming economy and the tax cuts to his historic summit with Kim Jong-un"...

[Ed. note: Also, passing both House and Senate, Trump rolled back draconian rules imposed on small and commmunity banks by Dodd-Frank:: May 22, 2018, Congress Approves First Big Dodd-Frank Rollback,  NY Times, Alan Rappeport, Emily Flitter: “Congress agreed on Tuesday to free thousands of small and medium-sized banks from strict rules that had been enacted as part of the 2010 Dodd-Frank law to prevent another meltdown. In a rare demonstration of bipartisanship, the House voted 258-159 to approve a regulatory rollback that passed the Senate this year, handing a significant victory to President Trump, who has promised to “do a big number on Dodd-Frank.”"] 

(continuing): "— highlights their abject failures and serves to prick their narcissistic egos. The country is doing better without them every day. Even worse, they are desperate to keep their countless crimes and abuses covered up. 

We know that there are many honorable, dedicated and legitimate members of our multiple intelligence and law enforcement agencies who strive to protect us the right way every day. So, why might any of us not just declare blind trust for our “intelligence community” writ large? Let me count the ways. 

Aside from the fact that former CIA Director John Brennan does not even attempt to conceal his loathing of Trump, it was none other than Brennan who had the CIA spying on members of Congress—indeed the entire Senate Intelligence Committee. Surely, there were others in the Agency who helped him. [Yes-5 others] How many like Brennan are still there?”… 

[Ed. note: Five [CIA] agency employees–two lawyers and three computer specialists-surreptitiously searched Senate Intelligence Committee files and reviewed some committee staff members’ e-mail on computers that were supposed to be exclusively for congressional investigators, according to a summary of the CIA inspector general’s report.”…7/31/2014, Obama should fire John Brennan,Washington Post, James Downie, Digital Opinions Editor…And: 7/31/2014, The C.I.A.’s Reckless Breach of Trust,” NY Times Editorial Board:   “The Central Intelligence Agency admitted that it did, indeed, use a fake online identity to break into the Senate’s computers….The C.I.A. needs far more than a few quiet personnel changes, however. Its very core, and basic culture, needs a thorough overhaul.”] 

(continuing): “Ironically, while Brennan is coming apart at the seams over Trump’s progress in a diplomatic relationship with Putin, it is Brennan who supported a communist—voting for Gus Hall as none-other than president of the United States. 

Then there’s Director of National Intelligence [DNI] James Clapper—the second Trump-loather only recently departed from the top of the “IC.” Mr. Clapper is the guy who had the NSA collecting all possible data on all Americans and then lied to Congress about it. 

Even more important, according to Mr. Comey’s own memos leaked to the New York Times, combined with Obama National Security Advisor Susan Rice’s “note to self” within minutes of Trump’s inauguration, we know that Brennan, Clapper, Obama, Comey, Rice, counter-terrorism advisor Lisa Monaco, Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates and Vice President Biden, met in the Oval Office just before Comey went to brief the president-elect. 

Not only did they decide to limit information about Russia to be shared with the incoming team, they dispatched Comey to set up Mr. Trump for the media explosion of the entire false narrative and Steele dossier. 

On January 6, 2017, on instructions from Clapper, Comey met one-on-one with Mr. Trump in Trump Tower. Comey “executed the session just as [he] had planned.” He dropped the bombshell of only the “salacious” details of the Steele dossier.

He ran to his car to write down the details of the conversation, then he reported to Clapper and possibly Brennan, one of whom leaked it to CNN. Comey’s briefing provided the very “news hook” they all knew the media wanted to run with the existence of the unverified, Clinton-bought-and-paid-for dossier. 

That remarkable setup, by the highest members of our “intelligence community” and Obama himself, sparked the media firestorm of the Trump-Russia-collusion lie that has besieged the Trump presidency to this day. Indeed, that was its purpose—if not impeachment. 

Don’t forget Peter Strzok — the FBI’s lead investigator for the “intelligence community”— hardly the epitome of trustworthiness. Strzok is the self-avowed despiser of Trump and any possible Trump supporter. Strzok is the epicenter of the Clinton email “investigation,” the Russia narrative, and the Mueller team until last July. Discoveries of his innumerable venomous expressions of hatred for the president “clouded” the Clinton email investigation and compelled his removal from the Special counsel team. Even more egregious conduct compelled his physical removal form the FBI. 

I almost forgot. Comey, McCabe, Strzok, and Yates, aided by others in the “intelligence community” more recently including Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, obtained multiple FISA warrants to spy on members of the Trump team. All those applications were based primarily on the Clinton-bought-and-paid-for Steele dossier of lies. 

We wouldn’t want to omit Susan Rice, Obama’s national security advisor, who tripled the unmaskings of Americans during 2016 — grossly abusing the government’s surveillance apparatus to target the political opposition. 

Sally Yates, of course, used those unmaskings to set up General Michael Flynn who was simply doing his job. She got him fired from his new position as President Trump’s national security advisor, had FBI Agent Strzok ambush Flynn in an interview, and McCabe may have helped tee him up with false allegations for Special Counsel Robert Mueller. 

And there’s more. As the chief judge of the super-secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court found in an opinion heavily redacted but unclassified last year, the Obama/Comey/FBI’s rank abuses of raw surveillance data of Americans extend back to 2015 (when Trump announced—if not further).

The court found egregious Fourth Amendment violations by the FBI and that it had given private contractors (probably Fusion GPS—Steele dossier creators—and Clinton-connected CrowdStrike) wrongful unlimited and unsupervised access to that data. The court so distrusted the FBI itself that it took access away from it, and NSA Director Admiral Rogers proceeded to eliminate the use of “about queries” completely. 

What was it Senator Schumer said? Cross our intelligence community and they have six ways from Sunday to pay you back? That’s not an endorsement of trust, but rather of fear. Now we know how the-man-behind-the-curtain keeps Schumer in line. 

Trump must be close to pulling back that curtain and exposing the “petty men” who “peep about to find [themselves] dishonorable graves.” 

At that moment in Helsinki, for Mr. Trump, the question of choosing between Vladimir Putin (ex-KGB despot) and Mr. Trump’s own experience of being set up, framed and relentlessly persecuted by the American “intelligence community” to this day, must have felt like the choice between Scylla and Charybdis. Either would destroy him, and no matter what he said, the Left would shriek the sky is falling yet again. 

Indeed, one must wonder if our president really feels there is anyone he can trust.”
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Among comments at Free Republic
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“We know that there are many honorable, dedicated and legitimate members of our multiple intelligence and law enforcement agencies” 

Do we really know this? I’m not seeing much evidence to back up this worn out trope. The only person to blow the whistle on the IC shenanigans is Bill Binney. That’s it, one person. If these “honorable” Fedzilla workers were truly that, they would not allow themselves to be sucked into the Deep State BS. I think their only concern is their pensions – they could care less about this country. 

11 posted on 7/19/2018, 10:19:10 PM by Major Matt Mason (The U.S. Senate – where American freedom goes to die.)”
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And the leadership of those agencies are his appointees. And he can’t say he supports the rank and file as they are the people bringing the information to his political appointees. 

9 posted on 7/19/2018, 10:05:04 PM by joesbucks”
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“Sidney Powell is the best writing force on the scene today. Her book “Licensed to Lie” is the rallying cry against the existence and depredations of the Deep State. Pay the 7 bucks, get the book, sharpen the pitchfork and marvel how she gives chapter and verse to the sheer evil and viciousness of Muellers prosecutors.

They lie to federal judges, they withhold evidence, the torture witnesses in solitary confinement and then suborn perjury.

They threaten witnesses and threaten their families. After the book, it is amazing how Weissmann and the Mueller crew are not imprisoned. You will hate the government because it is evil. They are worse than the criminals. 

Judge Emmett Sullivan is a hero of the book and was on the Senator Ted Stevens case. The Deep State was able to get Ted Stevens out of office, a Democrat was put in and the Obamacare plan was passed. While the travesty of justice was happening, FBI agent Chad Joy, probably one of the bravest men in Christendom, stood up and said, Your Honor, the government is lying to you, and here is the evidence. It was one man with a conscience that changed the outcome. Emmett Sullivan dressed the government down for hours, and was furious about their unethical if not illegal behavior. He has now been on the Flynn case and he takes huge precautions when dealing with US attorneys, he does not trust them, I don’t think he ever will. 

Sidney Powell is the appellate lawyer and she is the champion. A strong mind and a stern pen makes you glad that she is fighting on our side. 

12 posted on 7/19/2018, 10:23:46 PM by Titus-Maximus”
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“Do we really know this?”

We know this because they constantly tell anyone within the range of their voices that they are great patriots and strive to do their work with honor. 

It was probably too late to do anything about the alphabet agencies 50+ years ago. FBI alone has 35,000 employees and a budget of almost 9 billion they deign to tell us about. NSA’s open budget is around 10 billion. Snowden said it was around 50 billion off the books per year for surveillance and data collection in 2012, if I recall. They can’t even tell us how many work for the NSA, it is estimated between 30,000 and 40,000. The NSA is the largest employer in Maryland. 

Freegards 

13 posted on 7/19/2018, 10:27:37 PM by Ransomed”
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“Great article, but sad. Pray for president Trump, his family, and everyone trying to bring light to the darkness in our government.As for what is really going on, I have a question: Who are our overlords? I originally thought the unelected Supreme court ruled us, but now it looks like the unelected Intelligence agencies have ultimate control?

And as a final side note about all the “Russia, Russia, Russia,” BS: They just finished hosting the World Cup of Soccer. While it is not as popular here, it was widely viewed around the world, and they ‘Russians/Putin’ do not look like the scary people the hysterical left is trying to make them out to be. But of course this won’t stop them from trying. 

16 posted on 7/19/2018, 11:08:20 PM by Pajamajan”
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“Gen. Paul Nakasone – NSA director appointed by DJT and confirmed on May 4, 2018
Christopher Wray – FBI Director appointed by DJT and confirmed August 2, 2017
Gina Haspel – CIA director appointed by DJT and confirmed May 21, 2018
Dan Coats – Director of National Intelligence appointed by DJT and confirmed March 16, 2017 

What happened to picking good talent? 

18 posted on 7/19/2018, 11:28:58 PM by semimojo”
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“Excellent article and excellent response in the comment section:Doug Dannger Old Hickory • 8 hours ago– Interesting how the intel community won’t pledge loyalty to President Trump but everyone in the alphabet agencies demand the President bow in submission to them.

19 posted on 7/20/2018, 1:01:11 AM by CaptainK (“no collusion, no obstruction, he’s a leaker”)”
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I'm the daughter of an Eagle Scout (fan of the Brooklyn Dodgers and Mets) and a Beauty Queen.