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Ron Paul: ‘US Should Mind its Own Business; It Shouldn’t be in Syria’

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The US has no right to fly into Syrian airspace where it shouldn’t be and set boundaries but should mind its own business. Otherwise, it is an act of aggression, says former US Congressman Ron Paul.

The US fighter jet downed an armed drone belonging to pro-Syrian government forces in southern Syria, near a base in the al-Tanf region, on June, 20 as the drone was advancing on US-backed forces, according to a coalition statement.

This is happening at a time of escalating tension between Moscow and Washington. Also on Tuesday, Australia said it is temporarily suspending air operations in Syria.

RT discussed the latest developments in Syria with former US Congressman Ron Paul.

RT: Australia halted its cooperation. How significant is this development? Why did they do it?

Ron Paul: I think that is good. Maybe wise enough, I wish we could do the same thing – just come home. It just makes no sense; there’s a mess over there. So many people are involved, the neighborhood ought to take care of it, and we have gone too far away from our home. It has been going on for too long, and it all started when Obama in 2011 said: “Assad has to go.” And now as the conditions deteriorate …it looks like Assad and his allies are winning, and the US don’t want them to take Raqqa. This just goes on and on. I think it is really still the same thing that Obama set up – “Get rid of Assad” and there is a lot of frustration because Assad is still around and now it is getting very dangerous, it is dangerous on both sides.


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'Libya’s Utterly Predictable Chaos Perfect for Exporting Weapons & Jihadists into Syria'

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Obama’s biggest mistake was the invasion of Libya; Gaddafi was right when he warned that the overthrow of the government would lead to terrorist attacks in Europe, Daniel McAdams, executive director at the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, says.

Gunfire, explosions, and artillery strikes were reported in Tripoli on Friday as clashes erupted between the forces loyal to the internationally-recognized Presidential Council which presides over the UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA), and rival groups loyal to the General National Congress (GNC), also called the National Salvation Government. Dozens were reportedly killed and hundreds injured.

The fighting erupted after GNC militia commander Salah Badi launched an attack on the GNA-allied Central Security militia in an attempt to recapture parts of the capital, according to the Libya Herald. Badi was a key figure in the 2011 uprising against then-leader Muammar Gaddafi.
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No Evidence of Russian Intrusion in US Political System

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I think this is good progress between the US and Russia, but there will be plenty of individuals in this country who complain about it because it just seems like they are very content to keep the aggravation going, Ron Paul told RT.

The focus of a meeting between Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and US President Donald Trump at the White House on Wednesday was the de-escalation of the Syrian conflict.

Despite the positive overtones, the American media preferred to take a different angle focusing on the alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 US elections and the firing of the FBI chief James Comey.

RT: Sergey Lavrov says President Trump wants productive relations with Moscow after the previous administration soured them. Can they be improved considering the storm over the alleged ties between the Trump team and Russia?

Ron Paul: Absolutely. And I think that has been. What is going on right now is an improvement. I think what is going on in Syria with these de-escalation zones; I think that is good. They are talking to each other. I just don’t understand why sometimes there is an impression that we shouldn’t be having diplomatic conversations … All the tough rhetoric doesn’t do any good. Trump’s statement to me sounded pretty good. I think the whole thing about the elections, putting that aside would be a wise thing because the evidence is not there for any intrusion in our election by the Russians. I think this is good progress, and there will be plenty individuals in this country who complain about it because it just seems like they are very content to keep the aggravation going. Right now, the relationship from my viewpoint has greatly improved. I think that is good.
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'Has America become North Korea, where speaking to Russia is forbidden?'

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It is natural that half of Washington works as lobbyists for foreign governments: Israeli, the UK, Macedonia, Germany. It is acceptable to speak with any country aside from Russia, says Daniel McAdams, executive director of the Ron Paul Institute.

The chief of the US House Intelligence Committee, Devin Nunes, has apologized to committee members for disclosing information on surveillance relating to Donald Trump.

Nunes revealed, before telling his committee colleagues, that communications involving the Trump campaign team may have been intercepted by intelligence agencies.

RT: Why has Nunes been forced to apologize? Did he break any rules by telling the President his team was being surveilled?

Daniel McAdams: It might have been technically poor etiquette not revealing it to his fellow committee members. But look at how his fellow committee members are behaving on the Democratic side of the aisle about this whole thing. Letting the cat out of the bag early to them would have just opened him up to the kind of attacks that we are seeing right now. You reveal something that is absolutely earth-shattering if true, of Watergate proportions, that the Obama administration was spying on Trump and the transition team, and what do the Democrats say? Investigate the guy who told us this, who found this out. It is completely preposterous, so why bother telling them anyway? They are not following the proper protocol either.
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‘US Democrats and Neocons Need Some Anti-Psychotic Medication Over Trump'

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Washington insiders are attempting to undermine the presidency by having a continual investigation, and it’s unbelievably irresponsible, Daniel McAdams, executive director at Ron Paul Institute told RT.

FBI Director James Comey has admitted the agency is investigating suspected collusion between President Trump and Russia, something which had not been publicly confirmed until now. Comey and other intelligence chiefs testified before Congress on Monday about claims Russia meddled in last year's US presidential election.

Asked whether alleged Russian influence changed vote tallies in key states, both the FBI and NSA chiefs said "no." McAdams said it seems like Washington has been gripped by “a collective hysteria” and most noticeably among “Democrats and their new best buddies – the neocons.”
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‘America wants empire and for Europeans to remain subservient’

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The US spends more on its military than the next seven nations combined. Russian military spending is a fraction of US spending. The US spends an enormous amount on the military to maintain its empire, says Daniel McAdams, executive director, Ron Paul Peace Institute.

Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov Friday met NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on the sidelines of the annual Munich Security Conference. Although both admitted the need for dialogue, the mood at the table was palpably tense.

NATO's expansion has led to an unprecedented level of tension over the last 30 years in Europe," Lavrov told the Munich conference. 

Statements made by Western politicians at the Munich Security Conference indicate that the Cold War is not over yet, he said.

They say that all wars begin in the minds of people, and by this logic, that’s where they are supposed to come to an end. However, this hasn’t been the case with the Cold War yet, [at least] judging by some speeches of politicians in Europe and in the US, including statements that were made yesterday and today at the beginning of our conference,” the Russian Foreign Minister noted.

Meanwhile, there is also dissonance among Western leaders, including the issue of NATO expenses, as the Trump administration calls on European members to pay their bills to the 28-member defense bloc and boost defense spending.
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‘When Trump won, Ukraine’s Poroshenko put himself in pretty bad position’

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The Ukrainian president exposed his preference for Clinton during the US presidential campaign, explains Daniel McAdams, executive director at Ron Paul Institute, adding that it could have resulted in a change of tone in the US after Trump’s win.

US President Donald Trump met Ukrainian opposition leader Yulia Timoshenko last week. According to Timoshenko, Trump reassured her that the US wouldn't remove sanctions on Russia until there’s peace in East Ukraine. 

The former Ukrainian prime minister reportedly had a brief informal meeting with Trump last Thursday, before he spoke to the National Prayer Breakfast at the Washington Hilton.

“The President and the former PM had a brief, informal photo-op meeting in the reception before the National Prayer Breakfast,” the White House said in a statement released late Friday, as cited by Washington Post. “While no formal assurances were given, as the former PM is not the President’s counterpart, the United States remains concerned about violence in Eastern Ukraine.”
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Pentagon Paid PR Firm $540 Million to Make Fake Terrorist Videos

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The Pentagon paid a UK PR firm half a billion dollars to create fake terrorist videos in Iraq in a secret propaganda campaign exposed by the Bureau of Investigative Journalism.

PR firm Bell Pottinger, known for its array of controversial clients including the Saudi government and Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet’s foundation, worked with the US military to create the propaganda in a secretive operation.

The firm reported to the CIA, the National Security Council and the Pentagon on the project with a mandate to portray Al-Qaeda in a negative light and track suspected sympathizers.

Both the White House and General David Petraeus, the former general who shared classified information with his mistress, signed off on the content produced by the agency.

The Bell Pottinger operation started soon after the US invasion of Iraq and was tasked with promoting the “democratic elections” for the administration before moving on to more lucrative psychological and information operations.
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‘FBI’s Failure to Prosecute Clinton is Essentially a Political Coup’

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The Federal Bureau of Investigation has basically said the upcoming presidential election belongs to Hillary Clinton, and we really needn’t do much more than wait out the clock until November, former State Department official Peter Van Buren told RT. 

The FBI recommended on Tuesday no charges be brought against Hillary Clinton, despite the confirmation the e-mails she used via an insecure server contained classified data. However, FBI Director James Comey called the Democratic presidential hopeful "extremely careless" for the way she handled confidential information.

RT: The FBI calls it 'extreme carelessness' on Hillary Clinton's part: 110 e-mails contained classified information at the time they were sent or received. Why is the FBI not recommending charges against Hillary Clinton?

Peter Van Buren: This is the question that is now on the minds and the lips of pretty much all American citizens. This decision by the FBI is without precedent. Hillary Clinton, by the FBI’s statement, transmitted 110 classified emails over an unclassified system.
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‘Washington Has Gone From "Regime Change" to "Political Transition" in Syria, But We are Not Stupid’

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It is a good sign that John Kerry visited Moscow and had high-level meetings, but we must remember that US foreign policy will not change on a dime, said Daniel McAdams, Executive Director of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity.


RT: Washington appears to be backing away from previous calls to isolate Russia... What is behind the apparent change in policy?

Daniel McAdams: I think, first of all, diplomacy is always good. It is a very good sign that John Kerry actually went to Moscow, made the effort to go out there and had these high-level meetings. I think it is something very positive. However, I don’t want to get ahead of ourselves here because policy doesn’t change on a dime. But what is the reason for this apparent shift, I think the facts on the grounds have changed in places like - particularly - Syria. 

Russia was very assertive several months ago and they literally changed the situation. The US was not counting on Russia being so assertive. They were well into the stages of planning a ‘no-fly zone’which would have been a hub for the US-preferred rebels to operate from to continue the US policy - which has not abated - of overthrowing the government of Assad. The Russian move into Syria, based on a bilateral agreement with the Syrian government, has changed the facts on the ground. The aggressive American rhetoric, along with control of the skies and the ground in Syria, ended, and I think Washington took a long time to find its feet. And I think now they might be trying to attract some flies with honey instead of vinegar, as we say here.
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