Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Trump Says Will Focus Solely on Presidency, Not Business

Trump Says Will Focus Solely on Presidency, Not Business

by Stephen Lendman

In multiple tweets I’m combining, he said:

“I will be holding a major news conference in New York City with my children on December 15 to discuss the fact that I will be leaving my…great business in total in order to fully focus on running the country to MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!” 

“While I am not mandated to do this under the law, I feel it is visually important, as President, to in no way have a conflict of interest with my various businesses..”

“Hence, legal documents are being crafted which take me completely out of business operations. The Presidency is a far more important task!”

Whether he does or doesn’t in some way separate his presidency from business is largely inconsequential compared to how he intends governing.

Look at it this way. Hope for the best. Expect the worst, short of nuclear war, the threat hopefully past with Hillary’s defeat.

From inception, democracy in America served its privileged few alone, ordinary Americans given short shrift at best. 

Will Trump diverge from longstanding US policy? He was chosen, not elected, deep state power brokers deciding for him over Hillary - despite all signs pointing the other way throughout the campaign.

No one in America holds top elected or appointed positions without going along with the way things have always been. Trump sounding anti-establishment doesn’t mean he’ll govern this way.

Besides, who ever heard of a billionaire good guy? No one amasses that much wealth by supporting populism over privilege.

At the same time, I’ll wait until he begins governing before fully weighing in on him - judging him solely on policies he supports or rejects.

Choices named for key administration posts so far give great cause for concern - business as usual over positive change.

In a Thanksgiving Day open letter to Trump, I asked if lofty promises made campaigning were real or empty - whether history will remember him as just another dirty politician or a force for positive change.

It’s his call. I and other independent observers will judge him appropriately - holding his feet to the fire whenever promises made are broken, especially if he’s a warrior/Wall Street president like his predecessors.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

UN Aid in Syria Going to US-Supported Terrorists

UN Aid in Syria Going to US-Supported Terrorists

by Stephen Lendman

The UN largely operates as a wholly owned US subsidiary, serving its imperial interests - in flagrant violation of its Charter principles.

On November 30, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said world body aid is politicized - crumbs alone earmarked for thousands of Deir al-Zor residents, trapped by ISIS fighters, desperately needing help.

Most UN aid goes to US-supported terrorists. On Wednesday, Russia’s General Staff head of main operations Gen. Sergei Rudskoi accused the UN and other international organizations of refusing to provide humanitarian aid to Aleppo residents.

The Russian Center for Reconciliation did not receive a single proposal on the humanitarian aid deliveries either from the UN or from any other international organization as if civilians no longer need food and medicine after militants have been driven out,” Rudskoi explained, Moscow alone providing it.

“The Syrian engineering units have launched a demining operation as well as the restoration of vital civil facilities. 
Water supply has already been restored in some areas.” 

“Officers of the Russian Reconciliation Center have organized the work to restore vital facilities so that civilians could return to peaceful life as soon as possible.” Yet the UN refuses to help, Ban Ki-moon obeying orders from Washington.

Separately on Wednesday, Putin stressed the importance of normalizing Russia/US ties with the incoming Trump administration, saying:

“Now that the election campaign in the United States is over and a new president is about to move into the White House, it is to be hoped that there will emerge a chance to establish relations crucial not only to both countries, but also to ensure international stability and security.”

US hostility toward Moscow “is not our fault,” he stressed. “Russia is prepared to meet (Trump) halfway.” Key is what America’s president-elect intends.

Will he end a near century of US hostility toward Russia? Will longstanding regime plans end? Will permanent peace replace permanent war? Will America’s imperial project end on his watch?

The last US president going this way was assassinated. JFK’s demise wasn’t lost on his successors.

After witnessing US imperial wars throughout my lifetime, including the global one FDR wanted and got, it’s hard imagining peace breaking out all over.

Trump was hired, not elected, at least mainly to continue longstanding US policy. Perhaps the best to hope for is avoiding cataclysmic nuclear war, most everything else to continue as usual.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 


Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

Erdogan's Imperial Lawlessness

Erdogan’s Imperial Lawlessness

by Stephen Lendman

Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdogan is an international outlaw, a wannabe sultan ruling with an iron fist, wanting northern Iraq and Syria annexed, along with Assad ousted.

What’s been well-known all along, he partly admitted, saying “(w)e entered (northern Syria) to end the rule of the tyrant (sic) al-Assad who terrorizes (sic) with state terror (sic)…(not) for any other reason.”

Claiming he has no territorial ambitions is false. He covets northern Iraq around Mosul for all that oil. He seeks expanding Turkish borders to include Iraqi and Syrian territory as part of his war on Kurds - at home and abroad.

Claiming he entered Syria “for the establishment of justice” is pure rubbish. He denies it to millions of his own citizens - ruthlessly eliminating opposition, imprisoning independent journalists and other critics, waging state terror at home and abroad, while supporting ISIS and other terrorist groups.

Erdogan’s remarks unsettled Moscow, Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov saying “(n)o doubt, we hope that in the near future there will be explanations on this from our Turkish partners (sic).”

Erdogan’s remarks were “indeed news. This is a very serious statement. (It’s) in discord with previous ones in general and with our understanding of the situation,” said Peskov.

Russian armed forces alone are in Syria legally, at the behest of its government. America, Turkey and other rogue states flagrantly breached international law by their involvement.

Erdogan’s meeting with Putin last summer left both leaders world’s apart on resolving Syria’s conflict, Russia’s leader knowing the hazards of dealing with him.

After years of US-initiated conflict, Putin is the only major power leader genuinely going all-out for restoring peace and stability - his good faith efforts consistently undermined by Washington.

Will Trump fulfill his campaign pledge to normalize bilateral Russia/US ties? Will he cooperate with Putin in combating terrorism, halting aggressive wars on other nations? 

Key questions remain to be answered. A lot depends on what he does and doesn’t do.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 


Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

Green Party Disavows Turncoat Stein


Green Party Disavows Turncoat Stein

by Stephen Lendman

Her lofty campaign rhetoric was hollow, her progressivism phony. Her recount scam shows support for war goddess, racketeer, perjurer Hillary, financed with Soros money.

In bed with the devil revealed her true persona - not a physician wanting to use her professional skills to help heal a sick nation, as I regretfully said earlier, to my shame and embarrassment.

Claiming “we deserve some confidence in the outcome of this election” misses the key point, I said in an earlier article. Hillary as president and commander-in-chief of America’s military risks possible cataclysmic nuclear war with Russia.

Trump’s election dodged a bullet. Will he follow through responsibly on his pledge to normalize ties with Russia, both countries cooperating in combating terrorism? It remains to be seen if he’s strong-willed enough to resist enormous pressure to continue dirty business as usual.

A previous article explained Stein knows nothing about real democracy, nothing about America’s political system, nothing about its deplorable history from inception - nothing about fantasy democracy, duopoly power, a one-party state with two right wings, we the people entirely left out, a system too debauched to fix.

On November 28, dozens of Green Party members signed a letter titled “Greens Speak Out on Recount and Our Commitment to an Independent Party,” saying in part:

“We write to reaffirm our commitment to building a Green Party that has a radical analysis of the society in which we live, and promotes bold solutions to transform our society and address the root causes of those crises; a Green Party that is independent of the two money-dominated parties.”

“The Green Party cannot build the political power necessary for the transformative changes we need by allying with two capitalist parties that serve the interests of the wealthy. That is why it is imperative that the Green Party is independent of those parties.”

“While we support electoral reforms, including how the vote is counted, we do not support the current recount being undertaken by Jill Stein.”

“The decision to pursue a recount was not made in a democratic or a strategic way, nor did it respect the established decision making processes and structures of the Green Party of the United States (GPUS).”

“(S)tates chosen for the recount are only states in which Hillary Clinton lost. There were close races in other states (she) won, but which were not part of the recount.”

Stein is damaged goods, no longer credible, her recount scam a cruel hoax, accomplishing nothing but tarnishing her name and reputation, along with likely ending her political career.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

Trump Picks Wall Street Bank to Run Treasury

Trump Picks Wall Street Banker to Run Treasury 

by Stephen Lendman

Once a Wall Street banker, always one. Rare exceptions prove the rule. Goldman Sachs alum Steven Mnunchin is Trump’s choice for Treasury. 

After 17 years at GS, he became OneWest Bank Group chairman and CEO, an enterprise connected to George Soros.

He founded motion picture production and financing company RatPac-Dune Entertainment after serving as Trump’s presidential campaign finance chair. He’s chairman and CEO of hedge fund Dune Capital Management.

Like GW Bush, his father, grandfather and John Kerry, he belonged to Yale University’s secretive Skull and Bones. 

Other noted alumni include Supreme Court chief justices, CIA officials, cabinet members, congressmen, senators, and business leaders, among other prominent members of society.

It’s much more than a club, exerting enormous national and global influence. Fifteen members are chosen annually. It may be America’s most elite network. Inductees are considered potential business, government, legal and other type future leaders.

Notable alumni families include Bush, Bundy, Harriman, Lord, Phelps, Rockefeller, Carnegie, Ford, Taft, and Whitney, among others.

One observer earlier called bonesmen “an international mafia - unregulated and all but unknown,” its agenda New World Order dominance. Members are sworn to silence. Rare exceptions deviate.

All too often Wall Street figures are chosen to run Treasury. Paul Craig Roberts is my preferred choice, or someone of his stature. My opinion wasn’t sought.

Critics derisively call Goldman Sachs “Government Sachs,” among other pejoratives, Mnuchin its third alum since Robert Rubin and Hank Paulson to head Treasury. 

Alum William Dudley is New York Fed president, the leading one among 12 Fed districts nationwide - owned and controlled by Wall Street, not Washington, as commonly believed.

Bank of England Governor Mark Carney was a Goldman managing director. ECB president Mario Draghi was vice chair of its international operations.

Trump’s chief strategist and senior advisor Stephen Bannon is a former Goldman investment banker. Commenting on Mnuchin’s appointment, the Wall Street Journal called it “at odds with Mr. Trump’s message that economic and political elites have left the country damaged.”

Asked about his appointment Tuesday evening, Mnuchin demurred, saying “I’ll talk about it tomorrow.”

“The Treasury secretary is the chief navigator of the nation’s economy, overseeing the collection of taxes, the imposition of foreign sanctions, managing the public debt and serving as the chief connection between the administration and the financial markets and the business community,” The Wall Street Journal explained, adding:

“When Mr. Trump is sworn in Jan. 20, the success of his presidency will rest as much in Mr. Mnuchin’s hands as those of any other presidential appointee.”

Secretaries of State and Defense have yet to be named, the other two key administration positions.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 


Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

NYT Anti-Trump This Week in Hate Series

NYT Anti-Trump This Week in Hate Series

by Stephen Lendman

In response to Trump’s triumph over Hillary, The Times launched the series, an editorial note saying:

“This Week in Hate tracks hate crimes and harassment around the country since the election of Donald Trump. The Southern Poverty Law Center and other groups are keeping detailed counts of harassment and abuse.” 

“We will regularly present a selection of incidents to show the scope of the problem. This article, the first in the series, includes incidents reported in the last two weeks.”

Blaming incidents nationwide on Trump is part of Times bashing since announcing his candidacy last year, continuing as president-elect. 

Targeting him ignores America’s deplorable history from inception - at war at home and/or abroad every year in its history, today in multiple foreign theaters. At home, in countless Black and Latino communities, more battlegrounds than residential neighborhoods.

The late Gabriel Kolko called longstanding US policies “violen(t), racis(t), repressi(ve) at home and abroad (as well as) cultural(ly) mendaci(ous).”

Howard Zinn and others explained class conflict from the nation’s inception. America was never beautiful, except for its privileged few - not earlier or now.

From George Washington to Obama, US administrations governed ruthlessly - exterminating the nation’s Native People, enslaving Black Africans, impoverishing millions, marginalizing its most disadvantaged, treating women solely as homemakers and child-bearers until the August 1920 19th Amendment enfranchised them for the first time.

Endless imperial wars rage - at home and abroad from the nation’s inception. In response to America’s 1899 - 1902 war on the Philippines, Mark Twain wrote:

“…I have seen that we do not intend to free, but to subjugate the people of the Philippines. We have gone there to conquer, not to redeem...And so I am an anti-imperialist.” 

“I am opposed to having the eagle put its talons on any other land...We have pacified some thousands of the islanders and buried them; destroyed their fields, burned their villages, turned their widows and orphans out-of-doors, (and) subjugated the remaining ten million by Benevolent Assimilation, which is the pious new name of the musket…”

Throughout its history, tens of millions of corpses attest to America’s barbarity. Its gulag prison system is the shame of the nation, the world’s largest by far, mostly affecting people of color - racism behind bars.

Most Black youths can expect criminal injustice prosecutions one or more times during their lifetimes. Civil and voting rights legislation changed nothing. 

Post-9/11, police state ruthlessness replaced constitutional rights, disappearing in plain sight.

The “supreme law of the land” is whatever presidents and sitting governments say. Tyranny heads toward becoming full-blown. 

Washington’s criminal class is bipartisan - supporting endless wars on humanity, extrajudicial killing, torture, guilt by accusation, indefinite detention, military tribunal justice, mass surveillance, warrantless wiretapping, unchecked secrecy, manufactured threats, peace and social justice advocates increasingly at risk.

Media scoundrels, like The Times, ignore what’s most important to report. Trump is vilified before succeeding Obama. He hasn’t begun to govern.

If he fails to deliver on lofty promises made, holding him accountable should follow.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 


Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

Memorable Tribute to Fidel

Memorable Tribute to Fidel

by Stephen Lendman

Tuesday in Havana was a night to remember. Fidelistas turned out en masse at the Plaza de la Revolucion to honor their beloved leader, now passed. 

World dignitaries joined them, notably from Latin America, the Caribbean and Africa. “I am Fidel,” “Viva Fidel,” and “United, the people will never be defeated,” thousands chanted.

Honoring his late brother, Raul Castro said “(w)e and our self-sacrificing, combative and heroic people say to you: Ever onward to victory.” In other comments and tweets, he said:

“When an energetic nation cries, injustice trembles,” quoting Fidel.

“We are here to confirm before Fidel that we will continue the fight.”

“As Fidel said, ‘The youth hold the future in their hands.’ “

“Here with Fidel we declared Cuba free from illiteracy in December of 1961!”

“Faced with aggressions backed by the USA, Fidel proclaimed that behind the revolution and the Cuban flag there is a proud people.”

“Fidel’s principles and words resound in this plaza today.”

“We are thankful for all of the wishes, the solidarity and the kind words.”

As Raul prepared to speak, thousands chanted Hasta Siempre Comandante. Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said “(i)t is now up to us to carry the banners of socialism for Fidel, for Marti. And we swear we will.”

Fidel “fulfilled his mission on this earth. Few lives have been so complete, so bright. He left us unconquered.”

He quoted Fidel saying “I already did what I had to do. Now it’s up to you.”

Obama snubbed Fidel’s tribute by  having two administration aides represent him. Trump disgracefully called Fidel “a brutal dictator,” saying “(i)f Cuba is reluctant to reach a better agreement for the Cuban people, for the Cuban-American people and for the United States as a whole, I will put an end to the agreement.”

Obama’s December 2014 pledge about “charting a new course on Cuba” concealed continued dirty business as usual - strategy and tactics alone changing, not objectives.

Embargo, limited US travel and other restrictions remain in place. So does longstanding hostility toward Cuban sovereign independence.

Normalized relations aren’t possible without ending over half a century of lawless embargo, easily accomplished by executive order, no congressional authorization needed.

A previous article asked if Trump intends ending 56 years of lawless US embargo. He pledged more cooperative relations with other countries - diplomacy over confrontation.

His hostile statement isn’t encouraging. Fidel liberated Cuba from US colonial rule. Raul and a new generation of patriots aren’t about to sacrifice it to Trump or anyone else!

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 


Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

NYT Reinvents Syria's Liberating Struggle

NYT Reinvents Syria’s Liberating Struggle

by Stephen Lendman

Throughout Obama’s genocidal war on Syria, orchestrated by Hillary Clinton as secretary of state, The Times exclusively reported administration and Pentagon propaganda, hard truths suppressed - the same way it covers all major issues, especially geopolitical ones.

Courageous Syrian and allied forces are winning the battle for Aleppo, heading toward liberating it entirely from US-supported terrorists - cutthroat killers media scoundrels like The Times call “rebels.” 

They’re death squads imported from scores of countries, responsible for gruesome atrocities, including use of chemical and other banned weapons - taught their use by US and other rogue partner operatives.

As government and allied forces liberate neighborhoods, residents held hostage by terrorists as human shields are freed - grateful to their liberators, given food, medical care and other essentials denied by their captors.

The Times reinvented what’s happening, headlining “Thousands Flee Aleppo, Syria, as Government Forces Advance,” saying:

“Thousands (are) fleeing for their lives…as rebel fighters (sic) lost (ground) to government forces in (eastern) Aleppo…”

Fact: They’re joyfully escaping from captivity to freedom in government-controlled parts of the city.

The Times: “It’s like doomsday, said…an antigovernment activist in eastern Aleppo.”

Fact: The Times invented a new definition of terrorism, calling cutthroat killers “antigovernment activist(s)” - supporting these bloodthirsty monsters instead of denouncing them.

The Times: “The battle of Aleppo has followed a pattern established by the government: Encircle a rebel-held area; bombard it with airstrikes, barrel bombs and artillery; hit not only rebels but medical clinics, schools and other civilian structures; and wait for exhausted residents to run away or make a deal.”

Fact: What despicable rubbish! Syrian forces and allies, notably Russia, are battling against US-supported terrorist invaders.

Fact: Neither Assad, I, or anyone else knows what a supposed “barrel bomb” is. Conventional warfare with heavy weapons is being waged to eliminate a US-supported scourge.

Fact: Government and allied forces target terrorist positions alone, scrupulously avoiding civilian sites - unlike Washington and its rogues partners, considering them legitimate targets, massacring noncombatants by terror-bombing along with slaughter committed by their terrorist foot soldiers.

Fact: Terrorized, tormented and “exhausted residents” welcome liberating government forces on arrival.

The Times: “People in eastern Aleppo said they did not trust the government to keep them safe.”

Fact: False! Desperate to escape to government held areas, US-supported terrorists open fire on anyone trying - until liberated by advancing Syrian and allied forces.

Instead of reporting accurately on years of Obama’s war, The Times and other media scoundrels feature despicable state-sponsored misinformation and Big Lies.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 


Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

Trump Wants Flag Burners Punished

Trump Wants Flag Burners Punished

by Stephen Lendman

On November 29, he tweeted “(n)obody should be allowed to burn the American flag - if they do, there must be consequence - perhaps loss of citizenship or year in jail.”

The Constitution’s First Amendment “prohibits the making of any law respecting an establishment of religion, impeding the free exercise of religion, abridging the freedom of speech, infringing on the freedom of the press, interfering with the right to peaceably assemble or prohibiting the petitioning for a governmental redress of grievances.”

Flag burning is a legitimate form of speech. In Texas v. Johnson (1989), Justice William Brennan, writing for the majority, said “if there is a bedrock principle underlying the First Amendment, it is that government may not prohibit the expression of an idea simply because society finds the idea offensive or disagreeable.”

Jefferson said “(w)hat country can preserve its liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance.” Separately he said free speech “cannot be limited without being lost.”

Former Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall stressed “(a)bove all else, the First Amendment means that government has no power to restrict expression (regardless of its) ideas...subject matter (or) content...Our people are guaranteed the right to express any thought, free from government censorship.”

That includes flag burning or calling a public official a son-of-a-bitch - or words to that effect if he or she deserves it.

Compromising academic, press and speech freedoms risks losing all others. If Trump governs this way, he’ll be despotic, breaching fundamental international and constitutional law. Hopefully his tweet was just bluster.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 


Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

Cubans Honor Fidel

Cubans Honor Fidel

by Stephen Lendman

I remember when Fidel liberated Cuba in January 1959. On New Year’s day, US-supported dictator Fulgencio Bastista fled the island state for the Dominican Republic.

On January 7, Fidel-led freedom fighters triumphantly entered Havana. In April 1961, the Kennedy administration launched the Bay of Pigs invasion. Attempting to remove Castro from power failed.

Allan Dulles, Eisenhower’s CIA director, planned it. Kennedy, chastened by failure, refused another attempt like it. During his 1960 presidential campaign against Richard Nixon, he criticized US support for Batista, saying:

“He murdered 20,000 Cubans in seven years…and he turned…Cuba into a complete police state - destroying every individual liberty.” 

“Yet our aid to his regime, and the ineptness of our policies, enabled (him) to invoke the name of the United States in support of his reign of terror.” 

“Administration spokesmen publicly praised Batista - hailed him as a staunch ally and a good friend at a time when (he) was murdering thousands, destroying the last vestiges of freedom, and stealing hundreds of millions of dollars from the Cuban people, and we failed to press for free elections.”

On Tuesday, world dignitaries, largely from Latin America, the Caribbean, and Africa, are arriving in Havana to honor Fidel. The second day of a weeklong  memorial tribute began with a 21-gun salute.

On Monday, tens of thousands lined up to pay their respects to El Comandante in Havana’s Plaza of the Revolution, many openly weeping.

They somberly filed past a floral arrangement in front of a young Fidel portrait in freedom-fighter garb, a Revolutionary Armed Forces of Cuba (FAR) honor guard at attention beside it - emotionally moving to see without being there.

On Monday, Fidel’s ashes in a wooden urn, surrounded by white flowers, were honored by Raul Castro on national television. A mourner said “(h)e was always there in the face of any situation facing the country. I can’t imagine life without him.”

A grieving woman said “(i)t was he who gave us dignity as a people. He was the one who made us feel proud to be Cubans.”

Tuesday evening, foreign dignitaries arriving earlier will pay their respects to Fidel. Hundreds of CIA plots to kill him failed. He passed peacefully last Friday evening.

Interviewed by Edward R. Murrow weeks after entering Havana, triumphant in January 1959, he said “(m)y obligation (is) with the people. What I have to do now and in the future is…(for) what’s good for my country, and if for my country it is necessary that I renounce any position, I would gladly renounce (it) because sincerely, I don't (have) ambition (for) power, money, nothing, only to serve my country.”

And that he did until drawing his last breath. How tragic to lose him. How sorely he’ll be missed. America has no one remotely his equal in stature.

A Final Comment

Cubans are urged to pay tribute to Fidel by signing an oath, upholding his revolutionary ideals - first pronounced in a 2000 May Day speech, saying:

Revolution means to have a sense of history. It is changing everything that must be changed. It is full equality and freedom. It is being treated and treating others like human beings.”

“It is achieving emancipation by ourselves and through our own efforts. It is challenging powerful dominant forces from within and without the social and national milieu.” 

“It is defending the values in which we believe at the cost of any sacrifice. It is modesty, selflessness, altruism, solidarity and heroism.”

“It is fighting with courage, intelligence and realism. It is never lying or violating ethical principles. It is a profound conviction that there is no power in the world that can crush the power of truth and ideas.” 

“Revolution means unity. It is independence. It is fighting for our dreams of justice for Cuba and for the world, which is the foundation of our patriotism, our socialism and our internationalism.”

Fidel said what he meant and meant what he said!

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 


Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

George Soros Backing Stein's Recount Scam


George Soros Backing Stein’s Recount Scam

by Stephen Lendman

International con man Soros-connected attorney Marc Alias represents Hillary and the DNC. Earlier The NYT reported “Soros…agree(ing) to put as much as $5 million into (lawsuits) which Democrats hope will erode restrictions on voter access…”

Alias is leading the litigation. Soros said he’s “proud” to be part of it, according to The Times. Last summer, the Washington Post profiled Alias, calling him “a Democratic superlawyer with multimillion-dollar backing,” saying:

“With a multimillion-dollar commitment from liberal mega-donor George Soros, Elias is challenging laws that, he argues, diminish the impact of important Democratic Party constituencies of African Americans, Latinos and young people.”

“While Elias will not discuss the funding for his project, Soros’s spokesman Michael Vachon said Elias approached them with a set of proposals for challenging state restrictions that would be helpful ‘up and down the ballot.’ “

“That was appealing to Soros, who began his political giving with voter mobilization efforts, Vachon said. And they agreed with Elias that there was work to be done beyond what the civil rights groups, to which Soros also contributes, were doing.”

“Soros has given $5 million to the trust that funds the litigation, Vachon said, and Elias said he has picked his shots with an eye toward ‘protecting the Obama coalition’ of African Americans, Latinos and young people.”

A previous article discussed a group led by voting rights attorney John Bonifax and University of Michigan Center for Computer Security and Society director J. Alex Halderman, calling for recounts in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, states Trump won, alleging “manipulat(ion) or hack(ing)” despite no evidence proving it.

Bonifax is founder and general counsel for the National Voting Rights Institute (NVRI), web site documents showing “generous foundation and institutional support,” including from Soros’ Open Society Institute.

Is Stein wittingly or unwittingly in bed with international con man Soros? Either way shows her alleged progressivism is phony - a scam despicably betraying supporters.

Note: On November 27, former congresswoman, 2008 Green Party presidential candidate, true progressive, valued ally and friend Cynthia McKinney tweeted:

“I never thought I’d see the day: Green Party standard bearer standing shoulder to shoulder with a war criminal…”

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

Deplorable Reality in Ukraine

Deplorable Reality in Ukraine

by Stephen Lendman

In February 2014, Washington toppled Ukraine’s democratically elected government, replacing it with Nazi-infested putschists - a lawless regime at war with its own people, responsible for high crimes, ruthless governance and massive corruption, led by illegitimate US-installed Petro Poroshenko.

New York Times editors gave feature op-ed space to its illegitimate foreign minister, Pavlo Klimkin, disgracefully claiming “Ukraine has made great progress” - calling the most brazen European coup since Mussolini’s 1922 march on Rome a “Revolution of Dignity.”

Klimkin: “We are finally tackling corruption in a meaningful way, and we have introduced a raft of reforms that will help the state to function better.” 

“After our economy contracted for two consecutive years, we now expect to see it grow again. And we have achieved all of this under the most challenging of circumstances: while fighting a Russian-led war that has cost thousands of lives, and with a Russian occupation of the Crimean peninsula and the Donbas region crippling our economy.”

Fact: Deep-seated corruption rages out-of-control, grand theft rampant.

Fact: So-called “reforms” include police state viciousness, targeting political opposition, independent journalists, human rights workers, anti-war activists, and others wanting democracy, not fascist rule.

Fact: Ukraine’s economy is a cesspool of mismanagement and venality, causing mass impoverishment, mass unemployment and underemployment, along with widespread human misery.

Fact: With US support and encouragement, Kiev is waging war without mercy on Donbass, fighting ebbing and flowing after raging earlier. 

Fact: Claiming a “Russian-led war” turns truth on its head. So is saying Moscow occupies Crimea, insulting its vast majority voting to rejoin Russia, correcting a historic mistake.

Klimkin: “…Ukraine continues its journey to becoming a democratic, fair and prosperous country at the gates of Europe, a vision that so many of my fellow citizens died for during the Maidan Revolution in the beginning of 2014 and continue to die for defending our country against Russia.”

Fact: Ukraine is a fascist dictatorship, democracy prohibited. Late 2013/early 2014 Euromaidan protests were planned, orchestrated and implemented by Washington. 

Fact: Ukrainians are victimized by police state ruthlessness, Donbass an oasis of hope, its freedom fighters refusing to accept fascist rule. They deserve universal support.

Klimkin: What we have achieved in the last two years we could not have done without the hard work and sacrifice of our people” and foreign support.

Fact: Ukrainians “sacrifice(d)” freedom, entirely lost under fascist rule, Washington’s imperial project responsible for what happened.

Klimkin: Minsk agreements “were supposed to…end the fighting in Donbas…where Russia continues to carry out a hybrid war with thousands of Russian troops and proxies, tanks and other military equipment.”

Fact: Washington, Kiev and their rogue allies undermined Moscow’s good faith efforts for conflict resolution in Donbass. No Russian troops and proxies are involved in fighting.

Moscow didn’t “foment” war. It didn’t “illegally annex Crimea.” Klimkin urged Trump to continue policies Obama instituted, supporting Nazi-infested mob rule, preventing democratic governance from replacing it.

Trump’s administration will be defined by whether he continues dirty business as usual, or fulfills reformist campaign promises. A lot rides on which way he goes.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 


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