Sunday, November 19, 2017

Dean Henderson: Big Oil & Their Bankers in the Persian Gulf: Chapter 1 – Part VII -- The Trilateral Commission

Posted on 08/06/2016 | 6 Comments
(Excerpted from Chapter 1: David Rockefeller & the Shah of Iran: Big Oil & Their Bankers…)
While people celebrated the Shah’s demise in Tehran, Zbigniew Brzezinski was on his way to Kuwait City for a meeting with Kuwaiti Emir Jaber al-Sabah, Saudi officials and Iraqi President Saddam Hussein.
It was agreed that Hussein’s Republican Guard would invade oil-rich Khuzistan and amputate it from the rest of Iran.  Oil prices had just begun to stabilize when Iraq launched its first salvo, sending spot futures through the roof.
Bzrezinski co-founded the Trilateral Commission (TC) in 1973 with David Rockefeller.  The concept was hatched at the Rockefeller Pocontico Hills, NY estate in July 1972.  Rockefeller served as the group’s first chairman. One of its largest financial supporters is the Rockefeller Brothers Fund.  All eight North American representatives present at the founding meeting were also members of the secretive Council on Foreign Relations (CFR).  The stated purpose of TC was to form a triad of global influence consisting of North America, Western Europe and Japan.
The TC published The Crisis of Democracy in 1975.  One of its authors, Harvard professor Samuel P. Huntington, is a prominent writer for the CFR publication Foreign Affairs.  Huntington, intellectual darling of the global elite, argued that America needed “a greater degree of moderation in democracy”. The TC paper suggested that leaders with “expertise, seniority, experience and special talents” were needed to “override the claims of democracy”.
More recently Huntington has been pushing his “Clash of Civilizations” thesis, which argues that war between the West and Islamic nations is inevitable.  US foreign policy seems to follow it as a blueprint and it is working.
The Carter White House was loaded with Trilateralists. Huntington was coordinator of security planning.  In keeping with his derisive view of democracy, Huntington, with help from Brezinski, prepared Presidential Memorandum 32 which led to the creation of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), which is to take the lead role in imposing martial law should the US Constitution suddenly need to be suspended.
In early 1977 the Washington Post ran a story on the TC in which the paper worried, “But here is the unsettling thing about the Trilateral Commission.  The President-elect (Carter) is a member.  So is Vice-President-elect Walter Mondale.  So are the new Secretaries of State, Defense and Treasury, Cyrus R. Vance, Harold Brown and W. Michael Blumenthal.  So is Zbigniew Brzezinski, who is a former Trilateral Director and Carter’s National Security Adviser, also a bunch of others who will make foreign policy for America in the next four years.”
Suspicion of the TC grew across the political spectrum.  From the left, author Holly Sklar wrote disparagingly of the group in her book Trilaterals over Washington…  From the right, the late-Senator and Presidential candidate Barry Goldwater, in his book With No Apologies, warned, “David Rockefeller’s newest international cabal (the Trilateral Commission)…is intended to be the vehicle for multinational consolidation of the commercial and banking interests by seizing control of the political government of the United States.”
Public distrust of the group increased. In 1980, the American Legion national convention passed Resolution 773, which called for a congressional investigation of the Trilateral Commission and its predecessor the Council on Foreign Relations.  The following year the Veterans of Foreign War (VFW) adopted a similar resolution.  Congressman Larry McDonald introduced these resolutions, but Congress did not pass them.  On September 1, 1983 McDonald, a long-time critic of the global elite, was a passenger on Korean Airlines 007 when it was allegedly shot down by the Soviets.
Brzezinski was the architect of the concept of “rapid reaction forces”, which he argued the US now needed to police the Persian Gulf region in the absence of a friendly Iran.  President Carter made clear in his 1980 State of the Union speech that he would not hesitate to use Brzezinski’s brainchild in the Gulf region, warning “An attempt by any outside force to gain control of the Persian Gulf region will be regarded as an assault on the vital interests of the United States, and such an attempt will be repelled by any means necessary, including military force.”

Dean Henderson: Big Oil & Their Bankers in the Persian Gulf: Chapter 1 – Part VI Revolution, Heroin & Chase Manhattan

Posted on 08/03/2016 | 7 Comments
(Excerpted from Chapter 1: David Rockefeller & the Shah of Iran: Big Oil & Their Bankers in the Persian Gulf…)
Chase Manhattan issued letters of credit for all Iranian oil exports and monopolized deposits from the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC), even after Iran nationalized Four Horsemen oil interests to create NIOC.
Chase controlled the Pahlevi Foundation which owned an oil company, twelve Iranian sugar refineries, electronics firms, cemeteries, mines, industrial bakeries, the country’s General Motors franchise and a slew of banks including the Shah’s personal piggy bank – the Bank Omran.  While “Omran” means “development”, the Pahlevi Foundation focused only on developing the fortunes of both the Shah and Chase Manhattan.
David Rockefeller, whose family controls majority interest in the bank, chaired Chase, now part of JP Morgan Chase.  The Rockefellers added to their fortune during the Shah’s reign, taking in far more oil deposits in the country than it made in loans.  By 1978 Iran had become the world’s fourth largest oil producer, supplying 18% of both Japan’s and West Germany’s oil, 50% of Israel’s and 100% of the South African apartheid regime’s.  Yet the average Iranian worker languished in poverty.
Other Western banks behaved in similar fashion. This did not go unnoticed by Iran’s Central Bank Governor Al-Reza Nobari, who watched as his country sank deeper into debt while the Shah and his American bankers got filthy rich.  Nobari declared, “All the banks knew that the Bank Omran was the Shah’s personal repository for his pocket money.  But they went on lending to Bank Omran.  Citibank lent, for example, $55 million to (the Shah’s sister) Princess Ashraf for a housing project.  On the site of the housing project she built a palace.”
The Shah bought a share in Krupps, the huge German arms manufacturer.  He owned numerous hotels in Tehran, houses in Beverly Hills, Manhattan, Acapulco and the Swiss Alps.  He bought entire islands in the Seychelles and owned a race horse stud on a farm in Surrey, England.  The standard of living of the average Iranian continued to head south.
In late 1978 the same Tudeh Party that launched the 1951 strikes in the British Petroleum oilfields of Khuzistan, initiated an occupation of the offices of Oil Services Company of Iran (OSCO) in the city of Ahwaz.  OSCO was a tentacle of the Iranian Consortium.  Soon afterwards, oilfield workers went out on strike.  SAVAK agents were set into motion by the Shah to quell the resistance.  Their brutality only inflamed the situation.  The workers began to target Four Horsemen executives.  Paul Grimm, Texaco’s Assistant General Manager, was gunned down in his car.  George Link, Exxon’s General Manager, was nearly killed by a car bomb.

Part V -- Dean Henderson: Big Oil & Their Bankers in the Persian Gulf: Chapter 1 – Part V -- Pull The String & Watch Him Dance

Posted on 07/30/2016 | 2 Comments
South America 2008 (14)
(Excerpted from Chapter 1: David Rockefeller & The Shah of Iran: Big Oil & Their Bankers in the Persian Gulf…)
State Department insider George Kennan saw US control over the Persian Gulf oil patch as a control valve on Japanese military and economic expansion.  The State Department once called the Middle East, “a stupendous source of strategic power and one of the greatest material prizes in world history, the richest prize in the world in the field of foreign investment.”
Chicago Tribune columnist William Neikirk articulated the US modus operandi for grabbing this “prize” when he wrote that the US must exploit its “virtual monopoly in the global security market…as a lever to gain funds and economic concessions from Germany and Japan”.
Oil revenues financed the Shah of Iran’s military procurement program.  He agreed to recycle surplus petrodollars into US banks, mainly Chase Manhattan, which his good friend David Rockefeller chaired.  Iran’s Central Bank, the Bank Markazi, acted as wholly-owned subsidiary of Chase Manhattan.
Oil revenue also went to banks like BCCI where it funded CIA covert operations.  Somalia, Chad and Oman were all recipients of arms from the Iranians at the request of the CIA.  In Oman, Iran deployed troops to help quell the Dhofar rebellion.  The Shah even sent a fleet of Northrop F-5 fighters to General Nguyon Van Thieu in 1973 as the US was pulling out of Vietnam.  But his most ambitious role as CIA conduit was through his support for Kurdish rebels in Iraq.
A 1958 Iraqi coup deposed the US puppet regime of General Nuri es-Said and gave rise to a succession of nationalist leaders starting with Kareem Abdul Qassim.  In the late 1960’s the Shah began to funnel arms to Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) Kurdish rebels on behalf of the US and Israel.
Iraq made peace with the Kurds in 1970, but by 1972 Henry Kissinger and John Connelly were on their way to Tehran to enlist the Shah’s support in destroying the truce.  Colonel Richard Kennedy, a Kissinger aid, met with PUK leader Mustafa Barzani’s son to deliver $16 million in CIA military aid.  Richard Secord became the point man in keeping the Kurds re-supplied.

Part IV -- Dean Henderson: Big Oil & Their Bankers in the Persian Gulf: Chapter 1 – Part IV -- War Is Business & Business Is Good

Posted on 07/26/2016 | 6 Comments
(Excerpted from Chapter 1: David Rockefeller & the Shah of Iran: Big Oil & Their Bankers…)
No corporations profited more during the reign of the Shah in Iran than US defense contractors.  From 1950-63 the Middle East received 3% of US military aid to the world.  From 1971-75 it received 60.2%.  The bulk of it went to Israel, Saudi Arabia and Iran.
Iran and Saudi Arabia were the “Twin Pillars” in President Nixon’s 1972 Guam Doctrine.  Nixon and his cronies saw these two nations as critical to ensuring a steady cheap supply of crude oil to the US.  Saudi reserves are estimated at 261 billion barrels, while Iran sits atop nearly 100 billion barrels.
In return for cranking out cheap oil for the Four Horsemen (Royal Dutch/Shell. Exxon Mobil, Chevron Texaco & BP Amoco) these nations, both ruled by dictatorial monarchs, were armed to the teeth by US defense contractors and served as surrogates in financing and implementing US covert actions in the Middle East region aimed at nationalist and pan-Arab governments that threatened Big Oil interests.
In addition, oil revenues received by both the Shah and his House of Saud counterparts were recycled back into US money-center banks JP Morgan, Chase Manhattan and Citibank.  These banks own huge blocks of stock in the Four Horsemen and in the defense contractors which now jostled for position in both Tehran and Riyadh.  Chase Manhattan owned Iran’s Central Bank – Bank Markazi.  The international bankers were the main beneficiaries of this new oil for arms quid pro quo.
In Iran the Shah was given carte blanche on US arms purchases. Iran came to account for 25% of US military sales. Westinghouse and Hughes Aircraft worked with Iran Electronics Industry to build a missile assembly and repair plant.  Bell Helicopter constructed a helicopter assembly plant at Isfahan.  Grumman, Rockwell, Lockheed, Fairchild, TRW, GTE, Boeing and McDonnell Douglas all profited from deals with Tehran.
Bribery of Iranian officials was the norm in procuring defense contracts.  Grumman coughed up $24 million in bribes to sell its F-14 fighters. Textron paid $2.9 million in baksheesh. Kermit Roosevelt’s new employer, Northrop, paid $2.1 million in bribes to sell the Iranian Air Force its F-5 aircraft.  When Roosevelt’s memoirs Countercoup came out in 1979, many defense contractors were caught with their pants down as a now disillusioned Roosevelt named names.  BP pressured publisher McGraw-Hill to pull the book from circulation due to Roosevelt’s contention that BP had hatched Operation Ajax to overthrow Mossadegh.
US government officials passed through the revolving door to private industry to get a piece of the US-taxpayer-funded action in Iran.  Admiral Thomas Moorer, only months after retiring as head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, joined Stanwich International Corporation as that ship repair company’s sales representative in Iran.  Retired 4-star General Hamilton Howe signed on with Textron’s Bell Helicopter division in Tehran.
The Shah gave bribes to the US media, which portrayed his government in a favorable light.  CBS anchor Walter Kronkite received cigars and caviar, as did NBC anchor John Chancellor.  David Brinkley, Mike Wallace, Rowland Evans, Robert Novak and Washington Post publisher Catherine Graham were “gifted” as well.  The Shah made a $750,000 donation to the secretive Aspen Institute, which distributed pro-Shah booklets around the US.
Politicians were also beneficiaries of the Shah’s largesse.  Marion Javits, wife of Sen. Jacob Javits (R-NY), an important member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, received a $67,500 public relations contract from the Shah.

Part III -- Dean Henderson: Big Oil & Their Bankers in the Persian Gulf: Chapter 1 – Part III SAVAK Terrorism & US Multinationals

Posted on 07/22/2016 | 4 Comments
(Excerpted from Chapter 1: David Rockefeller & the Shah of Iran: Big Oil & Their Bankers…)
Wherever the Four Horsemen (Exxon Mobil, Chevron Texaco, BP Amoco & Royal Dutch/Shell) gallop the CIA is close behind.  Iran was no exception.  By 1957 the Company, as intelligence insiders know the CIA, created one of its first Frankensteins – the Shah of Iran’s brutal secret police known as SAVAK.
Kermit Roosevelt, the Mossadegh coup-master turned Northrop salesman, admitted in his memoirs that SAVAK was 100% created by the CIA and Mossad, the Israeli intelligence agency that acts as appendage of the CIA.  For the next 20 years the CIA and SAVAK were joined at the hip when it came to matters of Persian Gulf security.
Three hundred fifty SAVAK agents were shuttled each year to CIA training facilities in McLean, Virginia, where they learned the finer arts of interrogation and torture.  Top SAVAK brass were trained through the US Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Public Safety Program, until it was shut down in 1973 due to its reputation for turning out some of the world’s finest terrorists.
In 1963 when JFK was assassinated SAVAK Chief Hassan Pakravan joined the Shah in Tehran to celebrate Kennedy’s death.  CIA, MI6 and Mossad supported 30 paramilitary groups in Iran and provided support to Shah-loyalist groups.
Popular anger towards Big Oil, the Shah and his new police state resulted in mass protests.  The Shah dealt with the peaceful demonstrations with sheer brutality and got a wink and nod from Langley.  From 1957-79 Iran housed 125,000 political prisoners.  SAVAK “disappeared” dissenters, a strategy replicated by CIA surrogate dictators in Argentina and Chile.
SAVAK’s campaign of terror reached its nadir on June 15th, 1963.  That day over 1,000 people were butchered by SAVAK forces, in what became known as the 15th of Khordad Massacre.  In 1974 the director of Amnesty International declared that no country had a worse human rights record than Iran.  The CIA responded by increasing its support for SAVAK.

Part II -- Big Oil & Their Bankers in the Persian Gulf: Chapter 1, Part II -- The Standard Oil Trust

Posted on 07/06/2016 | 6 Comments
This big tusker is about to treat himself to a full-on mud bath in the hippo pool.
(Excerpted from Chapter 1: David Rockefeller & the Shah of Iran: Big Oil & Their Bankers in the Persian Gulf…)
In 1952 the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) published a report detailing collusion and price-fixing on the part of the Four Horsemen – Exxon Mobil, Chevron Texaco, BP Amoco & Royal Dutch/Shell.
Titled The International Petroleum Cartel, the report detailed secret production quotas, joint ventures, marketing agreements and other evidence of Horseplay.  BP and Royal Dutch/Shell had exclusive marketing commitments with Exxon and Mobil, who already had especially cozy relations even before their 2000 merger.
During WWII the Rockefeller family controlled 20.2% of Exxon, 16.34% of Mobil and 11.36% of Amoco.   These companies all emerged from the “supposed” dissolution of the Standard Oil Trust, a process that began in 1892 when the Ohio Supreme Court ordered Standard Oil of Ohio, head of the Standard Oil snake, dissolved.
John D. Rockefeller moved his headquarters to New York to circumvent the ruling, but Americans, led by populist writer Ida Tarbell, became increasingly hostile to the Standard Oil monopoly.  In 1906 the US charged Standard with violating the Sherman Anti-Trust Act.  On May 15, 1911 the US Supreme Court declared, “Seven men and a corporate machine have conspired against their fellow citizens.  For the safety of the Republic we now decree that this dangerous conspiracy must end by November 15th.”
But the breakup of Standard increased the wealth of the Rockefellers, who took a 25% interest in each of the new companies.  Standard Oil of New York merged with Vacuum Oil to form Socony-Vacuum, which became Mobil in 1966.  Standard Oil of Indiana joined with Standard Oil of Nebraska and Standard Oil of Kansas and in 1985 became Amoco.
In 1972 Standard Oil of New Jersey became Exxon.  In 1984 Standard Oil of California joined with trust babies Pennzoil and Standard Oil of Kentucky, then swallowed up Gulf Oil to become Chevron.  Standard Oil of Ohio retained the Standard Oil brand until it was bought out, along with Amoco and Standard baby ARCO, by BP, creating BP Amoco.
The Justice Department responded to the 1952 FTC report by bringing an anti-trust case against the US faction of Big Oil.  Exxon, Mobil, Chevron, Texaco and Gulf hired Sullivan & Cromwell, but the hotshot lawyers were never needed.
Ten days before the coup against Iranian President Mohammed Mossadegh’s democratically-elected government, President Eisenhower dismissed the FTC case on national security grounds.  Ike granted the Horsemen immunity from prosecution, while his envoy former President Herbert Hoover traveled to Tehran to help Big Oil and their puppet Shah establish the Iranian Consortium, which consisted of the Four Horsemen and French oil giant Compaignie Française de Petroles (now Total Fina).  BP held a 40% share.

Part 1 -- Dean Henderson: Big Oil & Their Bankers in the Persian Gulf: Chapter 1 - Nazis, Assassins & Operation Ajax

Nazis, Assassins & Operation Ajax
Posted on 06/28/2016 | 4 Comments
2012 8-6 On the Farm (10a) Pigs
The current animosity between Iran and the West has deep roots centering around the historically bad behavior of the Rockefeller/Rothschild oil axis.
(Excerpted from Chapter 1: David Rockefeller & the Shah of Iran: Big Oil & Their Bankers in the Persian Gulf…)
Prior to WWII British Petroleum dominated the Iranian oil patch.  Following the war Britain dumped its puppet Shah in favor of his yet more pliable son Shah Reza Pahlevi, whose Nazi sympathies were less overt.  By 1943 the US had established a military command in Iran and signed the Tehran Agreement, cutting the US half of the Four Horsemen a generous slice of the Iranian oil pie.
Iran was coveted for its expansive reserves of crude and remains the most geopolitically strategic Middle Eastern nation, bordering both the unprecedented Persian Gulf oilfields to the south and the vast, largely untapped Caspian Sea crude reserves to the north.
After World War II the Iranian people became increasingly hostile towards Big Oil and their puppet Shah.  Anger was especially prevalent among oilfield workers of the Khuzistan region who formed the main constituency of the Tudeh (Masses) Party.  In 1951 Tudeh formed a coalition with the National Front Party and elected Mohammed Mossadegh Prime Minister of Iran.  Mossadegh, who first campaigned against Soviet occupation of northern Iran, became a vocal critic of Four Horsemen control over Iranian oil.  He soon announced plans to nationalize BP interests in Iran.  BP responded by organizing an international boycott of Iranian crude and called on two long-time associates for more drastic measures.
US Secretary of State John Foster Dulles and his brother, CIA Director Allen Dulles, both worked for the Washington law firm Sullivan & Cromwell before joining the State Department.  The firm represented BP in the US.  It had also served as legal counsel to J. Henry Schroeder Bank, the Warburg family-controlled Hamburg bank that financed Adolph Hitler’s rise to power in Nazi Germany.  Allen Dulles had been a lawyer for Nazi combine I. G. Farben and headed the CIA-predecessor Office of Strategic Services (OSS) during WWII.  The Dulles brothers are cousins of the Rockefellers.

Calls mount for action on 'killer robots' after UN talks

By Ben Simon
Geneva (AFP) Nov 17, 2017


"Robots are not taking over the world", the diplomat leading the first official talks on autonomous weapons assured Friday, seeking to ease criticism over slow progress towards restricting the use of so-called "killer robots".
The United Nations was wrapping up an initial five days of discussions on weapons systems that can identify and destroy targets without human control, which experts say will soon be battle ready.
The meeting of the UN's Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW) marked an initial step towards an agreed set of rules governing such weapons.
But activists warned that time was running out and that the glacial pace of the UN-brokered discussions was not responding to an arms race already underway.
"Ladies and gentlemen, I have news for you: the robots are not taking over the world. Humans are still in charge," said India's disarmament ambassador, Amandeep Gill, who chaired the CCW meeting.
"I think we have to be careful in not emotionalising or dramatising this issue," he told reporters in response to criticism about the speed of the conference's work.
Twenty-two countries, mostly those with smaller military budgets and lesser technical know-how, have called for an outright ban, arguing that automated weapons are by definition illegal as every individual decision to launch a strike must be made by a human.

The Horrors of Senator John McCain

MAY 15, 1999

Imagem relacionada
The top war-monger in Congress has been Senator John McCain, Republican from Arizona, seeker of the Republican presidential nomination. In one rhetorical bombing run after another, McCain has bellowed for “lights out in Belgrade” and for NATO to “cream” the Serbs. At the start of May he began declaiming in the US senate for the NATO forces to use “any means necessary” to destroy Serbia.
McCain is often called a “war hero”, a title adorning an unlovely resume starting with a father who was an admiral and graduation fifth from the bottom at the US Naval Academy, where he earned the nickname “McNasty”. McCain flew 23 bombing missions over North Vietnam, each averaging about half an hour, total time ten hours and thirty minutes. For these brief excursions the admiral’s son was awared two Silver Stars, two Legions of Merit, two Distinguished Flying Crosses, three Bronze Stars, the Vietnamese Legion of Honor and three Purple Hearts. US Veteran Dispatch calculates our hero earned a medal an hour, which is pretty good going. McCain was shot down over Hanoi on October 26, 1967 and parachuted into Truc Boch Lake, whence he was hauled by Vietnamese, and put in prison.
A couple of years later he was interviewed in prison camp by Fernando Barral, a Spanish psychiatrist living in Cuba. The interview appeared in Granma on January 24, 1970.
Barral’s evaluation of McCain is quoted by Amy Silverman, author of many excellent pieces on McCain in the Phoenix-based New Times weekly. Here’s how Barral described “the personality of the prisoner who is responsible for many criminal bombings of the people.” Barral goes on, “He (McCain) showed himself to be intellectually alert during the interview. From a morale point of view he is not in traumatic shock. He was able to be sarcastic, and even humorous, indicative of psychic equilibrium. From the moral and ideological point of view he showed us he is an insensitive individual without human depth,who does not show the slightest concern, who does not appear to have thought about the criminal acts he committed against a population from the absolute impunity of his airplane, and that nevertheless those people saved his life, fed him, and looked after his health and he is now healthy and strong. I believe that he has bombed densely populated places for sport. I noted that he was hardened, that he spoke of banal things as if he were at a cocktail party.”
McCain is deeply loved by the press. As Silverman puts it, “As long as he’s the noble outsider, McCain can get away with anything it seems – the Keating Five, a drug stealing wife, nasty jokes about Chelsea Clinton – and the pundits will gurgle and coo.”
Indeed they will. William Safire, Maureen Dowd, Russell Baker, the New Yorker, the New York Times Magazine, Vanity Fair, have all slobbered over McCain in empurpled prose. The culmination was a love poem from Mike Wallace in 60 Minutes, who managed to avoid any inconvenient mention of McCain’s close relationship with S & L fraudster Charles Keating, with whom the senator and his kids romped on Bahamian beaches. McCain was similarly spared scrutiny for his astonishing claim that he knew nothing of his wife’s scandalous dealings. His vicious temper has escaped rebuke.
McCain’s escape from the Keating debacle was nothing short of miraculous, probably the activity for which he most deserves a medal. After all, he took more than $100,000 in campaign contributions from the swindler Keating between 1982 and 1988, while simultaneously log-rolling for Keating on Captitol Hill. In the same period McCain took nine trips to Keating’s place in the Bahamas. When the muck began to rise, McCain threw Keating over the side, hastily reimbursed him for the trips and suddenly developed a profound interest in campaign finance reform.
The pundits love McCain because of his grandstanding on soft money’s baneful role in politics, thus garnering for himself a reputation for willingness to court the enmity of his colleagues.
In fact colleagues in the Senate regard McCain as a mere grand stander. They know that he already has a big war chest left over from his last senatorial campaign, plus torrents of pac money from the corporations that crave his indulgence, as chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee. Communications companies (US West, Bell South, ATT, Bell Atlantic), have been particularly effusive in McCain’s treasury, as have banks, military contractors and UPS. They also know he has a rich wife and the certain knowledge that his supposed hopes for an ending to soft money spending will never receive any practical legislative application.
McCain is the kind of Republican that liberals love: solid military credentials as a former POW, ever ready with acceptable sound-bites on campaign finance reform and other cherished issues. Thus it was that McCain drew enthusiastic plaudits last year when he rose in the Senate chamber to denounce the insertion of $200 million worth of pork in the military construction portion of the defense authorization bill. Eloquently, he spoke of the 11,200 service families on food stamps, the lack of modern weapons supplied to the military, the declining levels of readiness in the armed forces. Bravely, he laid the blame at the doors of his colleagues: “I could find only one commonality to these projects, and that is that 90 percent of them happened to be in the state or districts of members of the Appropriations Committees.” Sternly, in tones befitting a Cato or a Cicero, he urged his colleagues to ponder their sacred duty to uphold the defense of the Republic rather than frittering away the public purse on such frivolous expenditure: “We live in a very dangerous world. We will have some serious foreign policy crises. I am not sure we have the military that is capable of meeting some of these foreseeable threats, but I know that what we are doing with this $200 million will not do a single thing to improve our ability to meet that threat.”
In the gallery, partisans of pork-free spending silently cheered while those who hoped to profit from portions of the $200 million gnashed their teeth in chagrin. Yet, such emotions were misplaced on either side. This was vintage McCain. Had he wished to follow words with deeds, he could have called for a roll-call on the items he had just denounced so fervently. That way the looters and gougers would have had to place their infamy on the record. But no, McCain simply sat down and allowed the offending expenditure to be authorized in the anonymous babble of a voice vote (“All those in favor say Aye”). Had McCain really had the courage of his alleged convictions he could have filibustered the entire $250 billion authorization bill, but, inevitably, no such bravery was in evidence. Instead, when the $250 billion finally came to a vote, he ^voted for it.
This miserable display provides useful insights into the reason for McCain’s ineffectiveness on issues such as campaign finance that have garnered him so much favorable publicity. A conservative Senate staffer offers these observations on McCain’s fundamental weakness of character: “The real question is why this Senator did not use the strong leverage he has to insist that his ‘ethical’ position be incorporated into a major bill? After all, Senator McCain couched his concerns in issues of the highest national importance: readiness, modernization, and the military’s ability to defeat the threats we face (whatever they are). “Pragmatism is the most commonly heard excuse. If McCain had made a pain out of himself in insisting on keeping the unneeded and wasteful pork out of the Milcon Authorization bill, some people would argue he would have lost comity with his Senate colleagues. They wouldn’t respect him anymore; they would have been angry with him, because he kept them up late (it was about 10:30 pm), and they would have been embarrassed by his showing them up as pork-meisters. This would weaken his ability to get things done.
“This argument assumes politics in the US Senate is a popularity contest: if you want to get anything done around here, you have to go along and get along. Well, this place is a popularity contest, but it is supposed to be one with the voters, not one’s colleagues. Besides, this place doesn’t really operate that way. Here, they have contempt for fluffy show pieces. Show them you mean business, and you’re someone who has to be dealt with (rather than a talk-only type), and you’ll begin to get some results. Get ready for a fight, though, because they are some on the other side who are no push-overs. Obviously, Mr. McCain was not prepared to make that investment.” CP

David Swanson -- Against Thanksgiving

What the hell do I mean I’m against Thanksgiving? Can’t I find something worse to be against? How about famine, cholera, war, slavery, rape, murder, torture, environmental collapse, refugee crises, evil heartless lying scheming governments, oil spills, slick propaganda, mass incarceration, entrenched apathy, bigotry, greed, or sadism? Indeed, I’m certainly against all of those things and thousands of others, and more so than I am against Thanksgiving.
But the world’s problems are relevant to why I’m against Thanksgiving, and for two reasons. First, it seems indecent to be engaging in Thanksgiving in light of the world’s horrors. Second, doing so contributes to those horrors in a number of ways.

Manlio Dinucci -- Per liberare l’Italia dalle atomiche non basta una

Per liberare l’Italia dalle atomiche non basta una firma 

Manlio Dinucci

L’Ican, coalizione internazionale di organizzazioni non-governative insignita del Premio Nobel per la Pace 2017, comunica che 243 parlamentari italiani hanno firmato l’Impegno Ican a promuovere la firma e la ratifica da parte del Governo italiano del Trattato sulla proibizione delle armi nucleari, adottato dalle Nazioni Unite il 7 luglio 2017.

All’Articolo 1 il Trattato stabilisce che «ciascuno Stato parte si impegna a non permettere mai, in nessuna circostanza, qualsiasi stazionamento, installazione o spiegamento di qualsiasi arma nucleare nel proprio territorio; a non ricevere il trasferimento di armi nucleari né il controllo su tali armi direttamente o indirettamente». All’Articolo 4 il Trattato stabilisce: «Ciascuno Stato parte che abbia sul proprio territorio armi nucleari, possedute o controllate da un altro Stato, deve assicurare la rapida rimozione di tali armi».

Impegnandosi a promuovere l’adesione dell’Italia al Trattato Onu, i 243 parlamentari si sono quindi impegnati a promuovere:

  1. la rapida rimozione dal territorio italiano delle bombe nucleari Usa B-61 e la non-installazione delle nuove B61-12 e di qualsiasi altra arma nucleare;
  2. l’uscita dell’Italia dal gruppo di paesi che, nella Nato, «forniscono all’Alleanza aerei equipaggiati per trasportare bombe nucleari, su cui gli Stati uniti mantengono l’assoluto controllo, e personale addestrato a tale scopo» (The role of NATO’s nuclear forces);
  3. l’uscita dell’Italia dal Gruppo di pianificazione nucleare della Nato, in base all’Articolo 18 del Trattato Onu che permette agli Stati parte di mantenere gli obblighi relativi a precedenti accordi internazionali solo nei casi in cui essi siano compatibili col Trattato.

I parlamentari che hanno firmato tale impegno appartengono ai seguenti gruppi: 95 al Partito democratico, 89 al Movimento 5 Stelle, 25 ad Articolo 1-Mdp, 24 a Sinistra italiana-Sel, 8 al Gruppo misto, 2 a Scelta civica.

Nel dibattito alla Camera, il 19 settembre scorso, solo i gruppi Sinistra italiana-Sel e Articolo 1-Mdp hanno chiesto la rimozione delle armi nucleari dall’Italia, come prescrive il  Trattato di non-proliferazione, e l’adesione al Trattato Onu. 

Il Movimento 5 Stelle ha chiesto al governo solo di «relazionare al Parlamento sulla presenza in Italia di armi nucleari e dichiarare l'indisponibilità dell'Italia ad utilizzarle».

La Lega Nord ha chiesto di «non rinunciare alla garanzia offerta dalla disponibilità statunitense a proteggere anche nuclearmente l'Europa e il nostro paese».

Il Partito democratico – con la mozione di maggioranza approvata nella stessa seduta anche con i voti di Gruppo misto, Scelta civica, Forza Italia, Fratelli d’Italia, Alternativa popolare, Democrazia solidale – ha impegnato il governo a «continuare a perseguire l'obiettivo di un mondo privo di armi nucleari» (mentre mantiene in Italia armi nucleari violando il Trattato di non-proliferazione) e a «valutare, compatibilmente con gli obblighi assunti in sede di Alleanza atlantica, la possibilità di aderire al Trattato Onu». Il Governo ha espresso «parere favorevole» ma il giorno dopo, insieme agli altri 28 del Consiglio nord-atlantico, ha respinto in toto e attaccato il Trattato Onu.

I parlamentari di Pd, Gruppo misto e Scelta civica, e quelli del M5S, che hanno firmato l’Impegno Ican differenziandosi dalle posizioni dei loro gruppi,  devono a questo punto dimostrare di volerlo mantenere, promuovendo con gli altri una chiara iniziativa parlamentare perché l’Italia firmi e ratifichi il Trattato Onu sulla proibizione delle armi nucleari. 

Lo deve fare in particolare Luigi Di Maio, firmatario dell’Impegno Ican, per la sua posizione rilevante di candidato premier. Aspettiamo di vedere nel suo programma di governo l’impegno ad aderire al Trattato Onu, liberando l’Italia dalle bombe nucleari Usa e da qualsiasi altra arma nucleare.

(il manifesto, 19 novembre 2017)  


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Lucram pentru ca Italia sa semneze si sa ratifice Tratatul asupra Interzicerii Armelor Nucleare, adoptat de Natiunile Unite.
ICAN, coalitia internationala a organizatiilor ne-guvernamentale, premiata cu Premiul Nobel pentru Pace 2017, informeaza ca 243 deputati italieni au semnat Promisiunea Parlamentara al ICAN, angajîndu-se sa promoveze semnatura si ratificarea de catre guvernul italian, al Tratatului de Interzicere al armelor nucleare, adoptata de Natiunile Unite, pe 7 Iunie 2017.
Articolul 1º al tratatului stabileste: ”Fiecare Stat Parte, se angajeaza sa nu permita, în nici o circumstanta, orice mod de detinere, instalare sau implantare de orice arma nucleara sau a oricarui alt dispozitiv nuclear exploziv pe teritoriul sãu, sau în oricare alt loc sub jurisdictia sa controlul sau; a nu primi transferinta de arme nucleare sau sa controleze  asemenea arme, sau alte arme nucleare explozive, direct sau indirect”. Articolul 4º al Tratatului stabileste: ”Fiecare Stat Parte care are arme nucleare pe teritoriul sau, care apartin sau sunt controlate de un alt Stat, trebuie sa asigure îndepartarea rapida a asemenea arme”.
Angajîndu-se sa promoveze semnarea si ratificarea, din partea Guvernului italian, al Tratatului asupra Interzicerii de Arme Nucleare implica deci, pentru semnatarii Promisiunii Parlamentare al ICAN, angajamentul de a promova:
        Îndepartarea rapida de pe teritoriul italian al bombelor nucleare americane B-61, si ne-instalarea de noi bombe nucleare americane B61-12, sau a oricarei alte arme nucleare;
        Iesirea Italiei din grupul de tari care în cadrul NATO, «ofera Alianta avioanelor echipate pentru a transporta bombe nucleare, asupra carora Statele-Unite detin un control absolut, si personal instruit pentru acest scop» The role of NATO’s nuclear forces = O papel das forças nucleares da NATO);
        Iesirea Italiei din Grupul de Planificare Nucleara al NATO, în conformitate cu articolul 18 al Tratatului de la ONU, care permite Statelor Parti sa-si mentina obligatiile lor respective acordurilor internationale anterioare, numai atunci cînd sunt compatibile cu Tratatul.
Invitam toate asociatiile si persoanele învaluite în dezarmarea nucleara, sa intre în contact cu fiecare dintre cei 243 de parlamentari*, cerîndu-le sa confirme explicit angajamentele mai sus mentionate, cu semnatura Promisiunii Parlamentare al ICAN, si sa dea maximul ajutor cui raspunde pozitiv, pentru ca Parlamentul sa decida ca Italia sa semneze si sa ratifice Tratatul asupra Interzicerii de Arme Nucleare.
*Aceasta este lista, publicata în site-ul ICAN, a parlamentarilor italieni care au semnat Promisiunea Parlamentara al ICAN, în site-urile Camerei Deputatilor si a Senatului:
Donatella Agostinelli, Roberta Agostini, Giorgio Airaudo, Luisella Albanella, Ferdinando Alberti, Tea Albini, Maria Amato, Ileana Argentin, Tiziano Arlotti, Massimo ArtiniMarco Baldassarre, Massimo Enrico Baroni, Giovanni BarozzinoTatiana Basilio, Sergio Battelli, Lorenzo Becattini, Eleonora Bechis, Silvia Benedetti, Marina Berlinghieri, Paolo Bernini, Massimiliano Bernini, Nicola Bianchi, Stella Bianchi, Fabrizio Bocchino, Antonio Boccuzzi, Lorenza Bonaccorsi,Alfonso Bonafede, Franco Bordo, Luisa Bossa, Chiara Braga, Paola Bragantini, Alessandro Bratti, Giuseppe Brescia, Beatrice Brignone, Marco BrugnerottoFrancesca Businarolo, Mirko Busto,Vanessa Camani, Azzurra Cancelleri, Salvatore Capone, Sabrina Capozzolo, Renzo Carella, Francesco Cariello, Paola Carinelli, Anna Maria Carloni, Elena Carnevali,Mara Carocci, Marco Carra, Ezio Casati, Vincenzo Caso, Laura Castelli, Andrea Cecconi, Susanna Cenni, Massimo Cervellini, Silvia Chimienti, Eleonora Cimbro,Tiziana Ciprini, Giuseppe Civati, Laura  Coccia, Matteo Colaninno, Andrea Colletti, Vega Colonnese, Claudio Cominardi, Miriam Cominelli, Emanuela Corda, Maria Coscia, Celeste Costantino, Roberto Cotti, Paolo Cova, Emanuele Cozzolino, Filippo Crimì, Davide Crippa, Diego Crivellari, Gianni Cuperlo, Angelo D’Agostino, Giuseppe D’Ambrosio, Federico D’Incà, Umberto D’Ottavio, Francesco D’Uva, Marco Da Villa, Fabiana Dadone, Federica Daga, Matteo Dall’Osso, Giuseppe De Cristofaro, Diego De Lorenzis, Loredana De Petris, Massimo Felice De Rosa, Daniele Del Grosso, Michele Dell’Orco, Ivan Della Valle, Alessandro Di Battista, Chiara Di Benedetto, Luigi Di Maio, Manlio Di Stefano, Federica Dieni, Donatella Duranti, Marilena Fabbri, Mattia Fantinati, Daniele Farina, Stefano Fassina, Marco Fedi,Francesco Ferrara, Vittorio Ferraresi, Andrea Ferro, Roberto Fico, Massimo Fiorio, Vincenzo Folino, Cinzia Fontana, Paolo Fontanelli, Filippo Fossati, Riccardo Fraccaro, Nicola Fratoianni, Luca Frusone, Maria Chiara Gadda, Chiara Gagnarli, Filippo Gallinella, Luigi Gallo, Laura  Garavini, Daniela Gasparini, Manuela Ghizzoni,Anna Giacobbe, Dario Ginefra, Silvia Giordano, Giancarlo Giordano, Andrea Giorgis, Maria Luisa Gnecchi, Marta Grande, Gero Grassi, Monica Gregori, Giulia Grillo,Giuseppe Guerini, Antonella Incerti, Florian Kronbichler. Giuseppe L’Abbate, Luigi Lacquaniti, Enzo Lattuca, Fabio Lavagno, Mirella Liuzzi, Roberta Lombardi,Marialucia Lorefice, Loredana Lupo, Patrizia Maestri, Andrea Maestri, Ernesto Magorno, Gianna Malisani, Matteo Mantero, Daniele Marantelli, Giulio Marcon, Raffaella Mariani, Umberto Marroni, Giovanna Martelli, Maria Marzana, Toni Matarrelli, Davide Mattiello, Alessandro Mazzoli, Gianni Melilla, Marco Miccoli, Salvatore Micillo,Corradino Mineo, Emiliano Minnucci, Margherita Miotto, Antonio Misiani, Michele Mognato, Sara Moretto, Delia Murer, Martina Nardi, Giulia Narduolo, Dalila Nesci,Nicodemo Oliverio, Giovanni Paglia, Erasmo Palazzotto, Annalisa Pannarale, Paolo Parentela, Oreste Pastorelli, Luca Pastorino, Serena Pellegrino, Caterina Pes,Daniele Pesco, Alessia Petraglia, Cosimo Petraroli, Ileana Piazzoni, Giuditta Pini, Michele Piras, Girolamo Pisano, Antonio Placido, Fabio Porta, Ernesto Preziosi,Stefano Quaranta, Lia Quartapelle, Stefano Quintarelli, Michele Ragosta, Roberto Rampi, Ermete Realacci, Franco Ribaudo, Lara Ricciatti, Gianluca Rizzo, Grazia Rocchi, Giuseppe Romanini, Paolo Nicolò Romano, Paolo Rossi, Anna Rossomando, Michela Rostan, Carla Ruocco, Giovanna Sanna, Francesco Sanna, Giulia Sarti,Mario  Sberna, Emanuele Scagliusi, Gea Schirò, Chiara Scuvera, Samuele Segoni, Angelo Senaldi, Marina Sereni, Camilla Sgambato, Carlo Sibilia, Girgis Giorgio Sorial, Maria Edera Spadoni, Arianna Spessotto, Veronica Tentori, Patrizia Terzoni, Marietta Tidei, Angelo Tofalo, Danilo Toninelli, Davide Tripiedi, Mario  Tullo,Tancredi Turco, Gianluca Vacca, Simone Valente, Andrea Vallascas, Franco Vazio, Liliana Ventricelli, Valentina Vezzali, Stefano Vignaroli, Alessio Villarosa, Sandra Zampa, Alessandro Zan, Giorgio Zanin, Pippo Zappulla, Filiberto Zaratti, Diego Zardini, Davide Zoggia, Alberto Zolezzi, Brando Benifei MEP.
European Parliament
Brando Benifei MEP
 Tradus: Light Journalist


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