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Sat, 25 Feb 2017
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Iraq carries out airstrikes against ISIS targets in Syria

© Ali al-Mashhadani / Reuters
A man looks at the site where a car packed with explosives blew up, Baghdad, Iraq February 17, 2017.
The Iraqi prime minister said he had directed the military to conduct airstrikes against Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) targets in Syrian territory. The strikes come in response to recent bombings in Baghdad, he added.

"We are determined to chase terrorism that tries to kill our sons and citizens wherever it is found, so we gave orders to the air force command to strike Islamic State positions in Hosaiba and Albu Kamal inside Syrian territory as they were responsible for recent bombings in Baghdad," Haider al-Abbadi said in a statement. "The heroes of the sky executed the operation and responded to the terrorists with amazing success."

IS claimed responsibility for a deadly attack that took place on February 16 in southern Baghdad, when a car bomb blast ripped through the area, killing at least 45 and injuring dozens.


Catherine Austin Fitts: The Empire Strikes Back Against Trump (VIDEO)

Investment advisor Catherine Austin Fitts says the oligarch, or establishment class, is on the attack. She calls this latest chapter in the Trump Administration "The Empire Strikes Back." Fitts explains, "Number one, Trump came into Washington with an agenda that would really make America great again: tax reform, regulatory relief, infrastructure and Obama Care. Immediately, he got bogged down in those for a variety of reasons. If you look at Congress's constituents, they can't make money solving those things, particularly if it helps regular people. So, immediately you bog down on those issues. He's trying to get his cabinet in place. In the meantime, you have the Empire worried about a variety of things. If you want to slow Donald Trump down or make sure the only thing he can get through Congress are things that are good for what I call the "piggies," . . . the first thing you do is take out their loyal lieutenants. You take them out and try to put space between him and his lieutenants."


While fake news media obsesses over Trump, CIA document release exposes illegal schemes and global malfeasance

Public interest in leaked and declassified intelligence reports has surged in the era of WikiLeaks and Edward Snowden. But while media outlets focus on the antics of Donald Trump, they continue to ignore hugely revealing information that could really embarrass powerful leaders, organisations, and even entire countries. And recently, as WikiLeaks continues to uncover covert US actions around the world, the CIA has actually had to release documents itself.

Below are five key revelations from a recent document dump from the CIA.

New WikiLeaks release downplayed

WikiLeaks recently published a 'smoking gun'; a high-level US intelligence report which proves the US sought to interfere in the 2012 French presidential elections. While the revelation headlined in European newspapers, The New York Times and others downplayed it. And The Associated Press, in its very brief coverage, dismissively (and falsely) labelled the CIA spying as "standard intelligence gathering".



Ukraine's ousted President Yanukovich speaks out on Donbass

If Kiev can't implement the Minsk agreements, Donbass region should be allowed to determine own fate, says the ex-President of Ukraine Victor Yanukovich.

Viktor Yanukovych is not known for personal courage or taking sides. When the fascist forces overthrew his government in Ukraine in 2014, he did not stand and fight, let alone exercise his legal right to call in international allies to help him. He could well have set up his government in Kharkov or indeed in Donetsk and asked strong foreign allies to help to restore power.

But instead, he ran away in the middle of the night. To be fair to him, if no foreign power came to his aid, he ran the risk of ending up like Saddam or Gaddafi. But the fact remains, he put his own safety over that of peace in the country he was elected to govern.

Comment: Yanukovich has been vocal on Ukraine recently: Meanwhile Ukraine is getting more and more unstable:

Magic Hat

How the corporate media continues to use Russia as a scapegoat to distract from systemic status quo failure

Countless observers have noted the obvious fact that the corporate media's all-encompassing obsession with anti-Russia hysteria is partly just a shameless campaign to prevent change within the Democratic Party by blaming its loss on an outside enemy as opposed to the oligarch-coddling, corrupt disaster it nominated. While true, the strategy is far bigger than that. So called Western elites have failed miserably across the globe, and the only way to retain their undeserved positions of power (many should be in jail), is to create and promote a mindless, highly emotional, non-domestic distraction. Enter Russia.

Ken Wilber perfectly articulated the failure of our discredited status quo in his recent ebook, which I quoted extensively from in my recent post, How a Breakdown in Liberal Ideology Created Trump - Part 1. He noted:

Comment: So, despite the incredible amount of control being exerted on us to think in certain ways about certain things, the algorithms being employed have inherent flaws and are based on all kinds of assumptions. Every time we see those assumptions and question them, we are effectively hacking the code of the algorithm and freeing ourselves of what they want us to think.


Iran: Total support for Palestine Intifada

"The sorrowful story of Palestine and the excruciating sadness felt because of the oppression against this patient, enduring and resistant nation, truly distresses any individual who seeks freedom, truth and justice and it thrusts an agonizing pain and suffering upon one's heart."

This is how Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran opened the Sixth International Conference in Support of the Palestinian Intifada (uprising) which was held in the Summit Hall in the Iranian capital Tehran.

The two-day international conference on Palestine which was held on the 21st and 22nd of February was an international show of solidarity with the oppressed nation in the face of Israel occupation and atrocities. The 6th International Conference in Support of the Palestinian Intifada opened with 80 delegations from around the world with more than 700 foreign guests and representatives of the pro-Palestinian organizations took part in the event.


Trump wants to expand US nuclear arsenal, make it 'top of the pack'

© REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
U.S. President Donald Trump pauses during an an interview with Reuters in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, U.S., February 23, 2017.
President Donald Trump said on Thursday he wants to ensure the U.S. nuclear arsenal is at the "top of the pack," saying the United States has fallen behind in its atomic weapons capacity.

In a Reuters interview, Trump also said China could solve the national security challenge posed by North Korea "very easily if they want to," ratcheting up pressure on Beijing to exert more influence to rein in Pyongyang's increasingly bellicose actions.

In his first comments about the U.S. nuclear arsenal since taking office on Jan. 20, Trump said he would like to see a world with no nuclear weapons but expressed concern that the United States has "fallen behind on nuclear weapon capacity."

"I am the first one that would like to see everybody - nobody have nukes, but we're never going to fall behind any country even if it's a friendly country, we're never going to fall behind on nuclear power.

"It would be wonderful, a dream would be that no country would have nukes, but if countries are going to have nukes, we're going to be at the top of the pack," Trump said.

Comment: Putin is looking into ways to defuse this nuclear situation: Putin visits the FSB and outlines how a deal with Trump can be made

Snakes in Suits

Warhawk McCain makes secret trip to US-occupied Kurdish zone in Syria, goes on to meet Erdogan

In an unusual move for a sitting senator, John McCain (R-AZ) secretly traveled to northern Syria last weekend to speak with American military officials and Kurdish fighters at the forefront of the push to drive Islamic State out of their de facto capital of Raqqa. The short visit came in the middle of a regional trip that took McCain from Saudi Arabia to Turkey, where he discussed evolving plans to counter the Islamic State in the Middle East. Per the Wall Street Journal:
U.S. officials familiar with Mr. McCain's trip said that the senator traveled to Kobani, the Syrian town on the Turkey border controlled by Kurdish forces since 2012.

In a statement, Mr. McCain's office confirmed that a trip took place, saying the senator "traveled to northern Syria last week to visit U.S. forces deployed there and to discuss the counter-ISIL campaign and ongoing operations to retake Raqqa."

Mr. McCain is believed to be the first U.S. lawmaker to travel to the Kurdish-controlled area of northeastern Syria since it became a hub for American special-operations forces who are aiding local forces in the fight against Islamic State.

Comment: This lunatic McCain is acting on his own stirring up the war pot:


French election intensifies: Rise of Le Pen, fade away of Macron

© Le Temps
Opinion polls show Marine Le Pen increasing her lead in the French Presidential election, as the attraction of Emmanuel Macron - the centrist establishment candidate - begins to fade. Latest opinion polls in France suggest that Marine Le Pen is increasing her first round lead, and is starting to close the gap between herself and whatever challenger she will face in the second round of the French election. This is happening at the same time as the centrist challenger - Emmanuel Macron - is showing the first signs of losing support.

The poll conducted by Elabe for TV broadcaster BFM TV, puts the ratings of the various contenders for the first round as follows: [Le Pen] extending her lead by 1.5% if the centrist candidate Francois Bayrou remained in the race, and by 2% if he pulled out.

Comment: So far, the French election projections are moving a slim step back from a cliff-hanger, but anything can happen... as the US well knows.

Snakes in Suits

Congresswoman Maxine Waters goes off the deep end, calls Trump's advisors "scumbags"

The Democratic congresswoman from California Maxine Waters is losing her mind over President Trump and Russia.

On MSNBC the intellectually challenged congresswoman got triggered, and started calling President Trump's cabinet (and anyone who has ties to Russian oil and gas interests) "a bunch of scumbags."

What does Waters call loser presidential candidates (HRC) who had ties with selling uranium rights to Russia?