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Thu, 19 Sep 2019
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Chris Hedges: 'US Empire Could Collapse at Any Time'

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© Raw Story
America's military and economic empire could collapse at any time, but predicting the precise day, week or month of its potential demise is unattainable, according to a former New York Times war correspondent who spoke with Raw Story.

"The when and how is very dangerous to predict because there's always some factor that blindsides you that you didn't expect," Pulitzer-winning journalist Chris Hedges said in an exclusive interview. "It doesn't look good. But exactly how it plays out and when it plays out, having covered disintegrating societies, it's impossible to tell."

He explained that he learned this lesson as events unfolded around him in the fall of 1989. Then, members of the opposition to the Soviet Empire told him that they predicted travel across the Berlin Wall separating East from West Germany would open within the year.

Gear

Gordon Duff: The Wiki-Weasel, We Thought We Had Seen It All

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© Unknown
The Wiki-Weasel
"Wikileaks is a big and dangerous US intelligence Con Job which will likely be used to police the Internet"....F. William Engdahl

"supporting WikiLeaks founder, Julius Assange and..calling for revolution due to government cover-ups are intended results of a counterintelligence reverse tactic"...Bob Levin, FBI whistleblower
I can only say one word, flabbergasted. When I got the article by Larry Elder, a journalist who is known for finding the real story behind the story, I nearly dropped. The recent release of diplomatic cables, described by former National Security Advisor Zbiegnew Brzezinski as "seeded" with "pointed" facts to "favor an agenda" by an "intelligence agency" clearly restores long discredited George "W" Bush to a place of honor.
"Bush, hammered by the insidious "Bush Lied, People Died" mantra, endured one of the most vicious smears against any president in history. He is owed an apology.

When Hollywood makes The Vindication of George W. Bush, maybe Sean Penn can play the lead."
Bush, assaulted on all sides, his book tours besieged by protests, a president who left office with a country reeling in debt, losing two wars and now with his former vice president, Dick Cheney, indicted for bribery, is a hard sell as a hero. Before this, Wikileaks championed the war on Iraq and its planned expansion into Iran, a continuing theme, as Brzezinski points out, always the "point" of Wikileaks, war on Iran. Everything always goes there. "Hello, how's your mom, wasn't that an Iranian I saw sneaking into her garage...?"

Comment: SOTT.net is collecting these articles because they are important for keeping track of what may be going on behind the scenes as well as in the court of public opinion. SOTT's official view can be found here. SOTT supports Julian Assange and Wikileaks fully, and hopes to see his legal troubles come to an end and the future of global leaking of evil secrets assured.


Question

Geraldo Rivera Says Recent Domestic Terror Plots Are "Absolutely Bogus"

Geraldo's got a probem: he appears to be a man with a still functioning brain surrounded by shills, liars and psychopaths.


USA

Video of Seattle Cop Murdering Homeless Man Released By Court

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John Williams was gunned down by a psycho cop on a Seattle street last August
Under orders from a King County judge, police in Seattle, Wash., have released video footage of a police officer shooting a homeless man originally from Vancouver Island.

Wood carver John Williams was crossing a street when a police officer spotted him carrying a knife and a piece of wood.

Seattle police say Officer Ian Birk, 27, thought Williams was a threat.

Investigators say Williams had turned to face the officer but would not say if he had made any sort of move toward him.

Williams, 50, had been living in Seattle for 18 years, working as a carver at the Pike Place Market in the city's downtown tourist district, when he was shot Aug. 30.

He died after the officer shot him four times in the chest.

Audio recordings from the patrol car indicate Williams failed to comply with repeated orders to put down his knife, Seattle police said. A local art dealer said Williams was deaf in one ear and likely did not hear the officer.

Birk's lawyer did not agree with the release of the video, but King County District Court Judge Arthur Chapman ruled on Thursday that the footage should be released Friday.

Birk was recently asked to turn in his badge and his gun.

An inquest into the shooting is scheduled for January.


USA

Bloody Trophies

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We have an unprecedented capacity to absorb scandals. Wikileaks or no, Americans wake up each day to a new set of outrages, yet nothing changes. With hundreds of channels at our fingertip and a billion songs sloshing in our skulls, no crime against country, man or earth can linger long enough in any brain cell to matter. All synapses are currently busy with bullshit, yet again, thank you.

There have always been enough incriminating evidences to fill several Pentagons and CIA headquarters. It takes no dick or hacker to know that the U.S. government is duplicitous and sadistic. It lies and kills compulsively. Though hardly alone, America's unique in her reach and influence. As an empire, our sick tendencies become everybody else's problems. Without our "leadership," would Poles and Ukrainians kill and be killed in Iraq? Would Germans patrol Afghanistan? Would Georgia pick a fight with Russia, only to have its ass kicked? We don't just commit evils, we train many others to do it. We graduated thousands of torturers from The School of the Americas. After some bad press, it was niftily re-christened 'The Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation'. (Similarly, Blackwater is now Xe.) Our tactics haven't changed, and waterboarding, openly admitted to by our cynically sinister capos, is the very least of it. No criminal confesses to everything. "Ah, I only do some shoplifting on the side, Your Honor. No beating or rape or nothing."

Arrow Up

Italian Court Increases Sentences For 23 CIA Agents

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© Agence France-Presse
The lobby of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)in Langley, Virginia. Osama Mustafa Hassan, a radical Islamist opposition figure better known as Abu Omar, was snatched from a street in Milan in 2003 in an operation coordinated by the CIA and the Italian military intelligence agency SISMI.
An Italian court upped the sentences for 23 CIA agents convicted in absentia of abducting an Egyptian imam in one of the biggest cases against the US "extraordinary rendition" programme.

The 23 CIA agents, originally sentenced in November 2009 to five to eight years in prison, had their sentences increased to seven to nine years on appeal in what one of the defence lawyers described as a "shocking blow" for the US.

They were also ordered to pay 1.5 million euros (two million dollars) in damages to the imam and his wife for the 2003 abduction.

Washington has refused to extradite the agents, who all remain at liberty but now risk arrest if they travel to Europe.

Osama Mustafa Hassan, a radical Islamist opposition figure better known as Abu Omar, was snatched from a street in Milan in 2003 in an operation coordinated by the CIA and the Italian military intelligence agency SISMI.

Butterfly

The Way Out is the Way In

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© Dreamstime.com
Reading Joe Baegent's brilliant essay - AMERICA: Y UR PEEPS B SO DUM? Ignorance and courage in the age of Lady Gaga - has added considerable weight to some thoughts I've had of late regarding so-called political activism. This issue has, of course, been brought to the fore by the Wikileaks/Julian Assange saga which is, as far as I can see, a truly devious set-up - a tar-baby - that puts a person in the position of either accepting lies delivered on the platform of truth, or rejecting the principle of truth along with the lies.

The social, cultural and resultant political problems we face have become such a Gordian knot of pathological influences that any political action along legal pathways appears to be doomed to fail. Human beings are so divided, so immersed in their illusions, that there is no possibility of any unified political action - and the ONLY action that would work would be, of necessity, unified - the majority of humanity acting as One against the tiny minority of Pathocrats. Baegent notes, quite accurately,
What America really needs is a wall-to-wall people's insurrection, preferably based on force and fear of force, the only thing oligarchs understand. And even then the odds are not good. The oligarchs have all the legal power, police, jails and prisons, surveillance and firepower. Not to mention a docile populace.
In short, the situation is pretty much as described in the movie "V for Vendetta" in this revealing exchange:
Dominic: What do you think will happen?
Finch: What usually happens when people without guns stand up to people *with* guns.

Question

Cass Sunstein, Wikileaks And The Public Right To Know

manipulation chess
© Unknown
So Julian Assange is in prison, for now. There appears to be no case against him that any authority in their right mind would waste time on, unless the goal is to simply prolong the drama, which it may well be. Wikileaks arrived on the scene at a very interesting time. In the US, unemployment at record levels (22% at least), massive numbers of foreclosures and trillions of taxpayers' money given to save the banks from their own greed. In Europe, similar 'banking crises' brought on government 'austerity' measures whereby the people would bail out the banks with the only currency really worth anything - the sweat of our brows and our standard of living. Human currency is the real 'wealth' of any nation or government on this planet.

So millions protested and called strikes in Greece, France, the UK, Ireland etc. Such demonstrations of people power are perhaps the only weapons we have left against the corrupt elite of this world. Of course, it is knowledge of the extent of the blatant lies and corruption of the elite that galvanise the people to act in this way, and therefore the right of the people to know what their government is doing is fundamental. The principle on which Wikileaks acts, therefore, is to be supported to the last. I do have a small problem with the current Wikileaks issue however and that is the massive media coverage that it is garnering. I find little in the leaks themselves to warrant such prolonged media exposure, and, from my reading of public comments on the contents of the leaks themselves, I don't see them leading to any sort of massive public demonstrations. We can only hope that they will encourage more and better leaks so that the truth will finally be known and that may lead to action in the public sector.

As a result of having copious evidence to hand regarding the reality of government conspiracies aimed at manipulating public opinion, I have to admit also to being somewhat conspiracy-minded. It's a weakness, I know. But bear with me, I have a few questions to put to you; I'll answer a few of them, but feel free to come up with your own theories of the conspiratorial ilk or not:

Manipulating public opinion - does anyone disagree that all governments engage in this to one extent or another?

If yes, why does the government wish to manipulate public opinion?

Question

UK: The Papers Which Could Finally Force Full Inquest Into the Death of Dr David Kelly

Dr David Kelly
© Daily Mail
Questions: Campaigners have been attempting to get a full inquest into the death of Dr David Kelly since 2004
Today, the Daily Mail publishes for the first time the legal document which could trigger a full coroner's inquest into the death of Dr David Kelly.

The document, formally known as a memorial was written by group of campaigning doctors who have been trying to secure an inquest since 2004.

It lists the sequence of events which led up to Dr Kelly's death and the legal reasons they believe an inquest ought to be held.

It was sent to Attorney General Dominic Grieve QC by the doctors' lawyers, Leigh Day & Co., in September. Mr Grieve, who has read the document, is now considering whether to allow an application to the High Court for an inquest. The Mail has learnt that he has recently appointed a medical expert to assist him. His decision is expected shortly.

Dr Kelly, a world-renowned weapons inspector, is said to have killed himself after being named as the prime source of a BBC report accusing Tony Blair's government of lying to take Britain into war.

His body was found in woods close to his home in Oxfordshire on July 18 2003. Uniquely, for an unexpected death such as his, no coroner's inquest has ever been held.

The Hutton inquiry into his death found that he killed himself after slashing his wrist with a blunt knife and overdosing on painkillers.

On Monday the Mail revealed that no fingerprints were found on the blister packs of pills which Dr Kelly supposedly took. No fingerprints were recovered either from the knife or a bottle of water found by his side. He was not wearing gloves when his body was found, nor were there gloves anywhere near the body.

Stormtrooper

London Student Protest - Police Horses Charge Students in the Battle of Parliament Square

On the frontline in Parliament Square on the 9th Dec 2010. It's all kicking off when the police move to the side and the horses charge towards us. There is not much I can do but film the ensuing mahem all around me. It's worth waiting until the end when the metal fences start to be passed forward and used as barriers against the police, one is passed over our heads, it's so heavy we all have to put our fingers through the mesh to hold it up, just as the police are battering our hands with their truncheons!