Monday June 27, 2016
The web’s biggest content providers have started using automation to remove “extremist propaganda” videos from their sites.
YouTube (owned by Google) and Facebook are among the sites deploying systems to block or rapidly take down Islamic State videos and other similar material, sources said, though no company would confirm the action.
The technology employed was originally developed to remove copyright-protected content on video sites. It looks for “hashes,” unique digital fingerprints that Internet companies automatically assign to specific videos, allowing all content with matching fingerprints to be removed rapidly. Someone finds an offensive video, tags it, and then searches find other copies across the Internet.
Monday June 27, 2016
European and US markets are shaky in the wake of the historic UK vote to leave the EU. The neocons are warning that the vote will weaken Europe and thus embolden Russia. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that the UK vote result makes strengthening NATO more critical than ever. The US media has tried to portray the vote as a victory for Russian president Vladimir Putin. One hack even said of the vote to leave, “[t]hey are drinking copious amounts of vodka in the Kremlin today.” In today's Liberty Report we try to look past the hype at what the real ramifications of the vote might be in the shorter term and longer term...
Monday June 27, 2016
Last week’s UK vote to leave the EU may have come as a shock to many, but the sentiment that led British voters to reject rule from Brussels is nothing unique. In fact it is growing sentiment worldwide. Frustration with politics as usual, with political parties that really do not differ in philosophy, with an economy that serves the one percent at the expense of the rest of society is a growing phenomenon throughout Europe and in the United States as well. The Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump phenomena are but one example of a frustrated public sensing something is very wrong with society and looking for a way out.
Saturday June 25, 2016
War with Russia appears increasingly likely as the US and its NATO satraps continue their military provocations of Moscow.
As dangers mount, our foolish politicians should all be forced to read, and then re-read, Prof. Christopher Clark’s magisterial book, ‘The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914.’ What is past increasingly appears prologue.
Prof. Clark carefully details how small cabals of anti-German senior officials in France, Britain and Russia engineered World War I, a dire conflict that was unnecessary, idiotic, and illogical. Germany and Austria-Hungary of course share some the blame, but to a much lesser degree than the bellicose French, Serbs, Russians and British.
We are seeing the same process at work today. The war party in Washington, backed by the military-industrial complex, the tame media, and the neocons, are agitating hard for war.
Friday June 24, 2016
What does it mean?
Hopefully, a breakup of the EU and NATO and, thereby, the avoidance of World War III.
The EU and NATO are evil institutions. These two institutions are mechanisms created by Washington in order to destroy the sovereignty of European peoples. These two institutions give Washington control over the Western world and serve both as cover and enabler of Washington’s aggression. Without the EU and NATO, Washington could not force Europe and the UK into conflict with Russia, and Washington could not have destroyed seven Muslim countries in 15 years without being isolated as a hated war criminal government, no member of whom could have travelled abroad without being arrested and put on trial.
Clearly, the presstitute media lied about the polls in order to discourage the leave vote. But it did not work. The British people have always been the font of liberty. It was the the historic achievements of the British that transformed law into a shield of the people from a weapon in the hands of the state and gave accountable government to the world. The British, or a majority of them, understood that the EU is a dictatorial governing mechanism in which power is in the hands of unaccountable people and in which law can easily be used as a weapon in the hands of unaccountable government.
Thursday June 23, 2016
That 51 US diplomats reproached President Obama’s Syria policy by calling for greater American military force deployed against the Damascus government was itself a remarkable sign of official dissent within Washington. But the president’s authority was further brazenly undermined when a few days later the Saudi rulers endorsed the dissenting US diplomats – while being received at the White House.
Several things can be discerned here. For one, the US policy on Syria is reeling from failure. The objective of regime change – which has impelled the whole war in that country for the past five years – seems to be fading as an obtainable goal. Russia’s military intervention beginning last October to stabilize the Syrian state put paid to that. Reports that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the top commander of the so-called Islamic State (IS or Daesh), has been killed in a Syrian/Russian air strike in the group’s eastern stronghold of Raqqa suggests that the foreign-backed terrorist insurgency is indeed facing final defeat.
The US covert tactic of using a dual-track political process of supposed peace negotiations to allow for mercenary proxies to regroup has also come unstuck. Syria and its Russian, Iranian and Hezbollah allies have not relented in targeting terrorist militia, even those whom Washington disingenuously refers to as “moderates” and “on ceasefire.” The cessation in hostilities called for by Russia and the US back in February is sundered because it never was a bona fide ceasefire in the first place, as far as Washington was really concerned. It was only a side-way maneuver to facilitate regime change by political means.
Thursday June 23, 2016
Ashley Cervantes, a then 18-year-old American citizen, was stopped at the Mexico border and, for some unspecified reason, perhaps related to her being young and of Hispanic ethnicity, accused by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) of smuggling drugs.
A search of her person and belongings proved fruitless, which often is a strong indicator that there are no drugs. The process involved being locked into a detention room for several hours, handcuffed to a chair, while several dogs were brought in to sniff at her. A request to call her mother was denied.
But bullying is the best law enforcement tactic, so they gave her a body cavity search, which means a CBP agent put on some rubber gloves and shoved a finger up her vagina and butt. She was also made to squat pantless so female investigators could visually inspect her privates. Still no drugs.
Tuesday June 21, 2016
It is ironic that fifty-one US State Department employees, perhaps overly-generously dignified in the media with the title of “diplomats,” have come out in favor of removing a foreign head of state by force. Detailing their opposition to the status quo, the signatories submitted a dissent memo through established Foreign Service channels. The document itself is classified, even though the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal clearly have obtained copies, presumably leaked to them by some of the dissident officers.
The signatories have reportedly demanded “targeted air strikes” and the “judicious use of stand-off and air weapons which would undergird and drive a more focused and hard-nosed US-led diplomatic process” to bring down the al-Assad government. They justify their dissent by arguing that “The moral rationale for taking steps to end the deaths and suffering in Syria, after five years of brutal war, is evident and unquestionable. The status quo in Syria will continue to present increasingly dire, if not disastrous, humanitarian, diplomatic and terrorism-related challenges.”
The memo describes the Syrian government’s alleged barrel bomb attacks on civilians “the root cause of the instability that continues to grip Syria and the broader region. Crucially, Syria’s Sunni population continues to view the Assad regime as the primary enemy in the conflict. Failure to stem Assad’s flagrant abuses will only bolster the ideological appeal of groups such as (IS), even as they endure tactical setbacks on the battlefield.”
Tuesday June 21, 2016
Since the end of the Cold War, American foreign policy could almost have been designed to undermine our national interests. Whether under Republican George W. Bush or Democrats Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, we have seen “regime changes” and “color revolutions,” facilitation of global jihadism while claiming to combat it, and gratuitous confrontation with post-communist Russia which was going out of its way to become our reliable ally.
For those familiar with the operational code of the late Soviet Union, the counterproductive skew of American policy has a familiar ring. The Bolsheviks sacrificed the interests of the Russian people in pursuit of their Marxist-Leninist vision. In his famous work, “The Three Sources and Three Component Parts of Marxism,” Vladimir Lenin, the founder of the Soviet state, described the roots of his ruling ideology in 19th century German philosophy, British political economy, and French utopian socialism.
It’s time to ask why, under GOP and Democrat administrations alike, American foreign policy is so dysfunctional. Also, one could notice that this policy has three components as well.
First, consider the power of money centered in the Washington establishment, sometimes summarized as the Military-Industrial Complex (MIC). This huge network of institutions, both public and private, whose bread and butter depend on global adventurism, today extends well beyond the MIC that outgoing President Dwight Eisenhower described in 1960.
Monday June 20, 2016
According to the Telegraph newspaper, “Omar Mateen, the Orlando gunman, told his victims the attack was revenge for American bombing of Afghanistan, but allowed black Americans to be released because ‘they have suffered enough.’”
The person who recounted what Mateen said is 20-year-old Patience Carter. According to theTelegraph article, she heard Mateen telling police on the phone that he was pledging allegiance to Isil and saying the attacks were in retaliation for America’s bombing of Afghanistan.”
So, why do so many Americans, especially the US mainstream press, do everything they can to avoid confronting that simple fact — that Mateen killed those people in retaliation for America’s bombing of Afghanistan?
Indeed, why have they done the same thing with respect to every other anti-American terrorist attack since 1993?
Beginning with the 1993 attack on the World Trade Center and continuing with the attack on the USS Cole, the attack on the US Embassies in East Africa, the 9/11 attacks, the Boston Marathon attack, the Ft. Hood attack, the San Bernardino attack, and others, the terrorists have made it clear that they are retaliating for the death and destruction that the US government has wreaked on people in the Middle East or Afghanistan, including countless people of the Muslim faith.