Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Brunswick, ME, United States

The collapsing US military & economic empire is making Washington & NATO even more dangerous. US could not beat the Taliban but thinks it can take on China-Russia-Iran...a sign of psychopathology for sure. @BruceKGagnon

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Building Resistance to Pipelines

It Takes a Cabin to Stop a Pipeline from R3IMAGE on Vimeo.

On April 20, 2016 Kinder Morgan announced that it would suspend the North East Direct (NED) pipeline. One month before the news was announced Will Elwell - a traditional New England timber framer - built a replica of the Henry David Thoreau cabin in the pathway of the NED pipeline in Ashfield, Massachusetts. 

This video captures the sentiments of Elwell the day after the pipeline was halted and explores the future purpose of the Thoreau cabin. It is also a celebration of the relief that came just as suddenly to unsuspecting towns across New England as the day when the threat of the pipeline was announced. 

The towns now organized are coming together to drive the nail into the coffin of Kinder Morgan and all pipelines throughout the region.

Communities are coming together across the board to fight for their town sovereignty and energy independence. This vignette ponders the role of the Thoreau cabin to further these pursuits. As far as Elwell is concerned, "this is only the beginning."

The video concludes with a song led by friend Tom Neilson called "That pipeline ain't gonna pass."

Friday, May 27, 2016

Silencing America as it Prepares for War

By John Pilger

Returning to the United States in an election year, I am struck by the silence. I have covered four presidential campaigns, starting with 1968; I was with Robert Kennedy when he was shot and I saw his assassin, preparing to kill him. It was a baptism in the American way, along with the salivating violence of the Chicago police at the Democratic Party’s rigged convention.  The great counter revolution had begun.

The first to be assassinated that year, Martin Luther King, had dared link the suffering of African-Americans and the people of Vietnam. When Janis Joplin sang, “Freedom’s just another word for nothing left to lose”, she spoke perhaps unconsciously for millions of America’s victims in faraway places.

“We lost 58,000 young soldiers in Vietnam, and they died defending your freedom. Now don’t you forget it.”  So said a National Parks Service guide as I filmed last week at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington. He was addressing a school party of young teenagers in bright orange T-shirts. As if by rote, he inverted the truth about Vietnam into an unchallenged lie.

The millions of Vietnamese who died and were maimed and poisoned and dispossessed by the American invasion have no historical place in young minds, not to mention the estimated 60,000 veterans who took their own lives. A friend of mine, a marine who became a paraplegic in Vietnam, was often asked, “Which side did you fight on?”

A few years ago, I attended a popular exhibition called “The Price of Freedom” at the venerable Smithsonian Institution in Washington. The lines of ordinary people, mostly children shuffling through a Santa’s grotto of revisionism, were dispensed a variety of lies: the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki saved “a million lives”; Iraq was “liberated [by] air strikes of unprecedented precision”. The theme was unerringly heroic: only Americans pay the price of freedom.

The 2016 election campaign is remarkable not only for the rise of Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders but also for the resilience of an enduring silence about a murderous self-bestowed divinity. A third of the members of the United Nations have felt Washington’s boot, overturning governments, subverting democracy, imposing blockades and boycotts. Most of the presidents responsible have been liberal – Truman, Kennedy, Johnson, Carter, Clinton, Obama.

The breathtaking record of perfidy is so mutated in the public mind, wrote the late Harold Pinter, that it “never happened …Nothing ever happened. Even while it was happening it wasn’t happening. It didn’t matter. It was of no interest. It didn’t matter … “. Pinter expressed a mock admiration for what he called “a quite clinical manipulation of power worldwide while masquerading as a force for universal good. It’s a brilliant, even witty, highly successful act of hypnosis.”

Take Obama. As he prepares to leave office, the fawning has begun all over again. He is “cool”. One of the more violent presidents, Obama gave full reign to the Pentagon war-making apparatus of his discredited predecessor. He prosecuted more whistleblowers – truth-tellers – than any president. He pronounced Chelsea Manning guilty before she was tried. Today, Obama runs an unprecedented worldwide campaign of terrorism and murder by drone.

In 2009, Obama promised to help “rid the world of nuclear weapons” and was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.  No American president has built more nuclear warheads than Obama. He is “modernising” America’s doomsday arsenal, including a new “mini” nuclear weapon, whose size and “smart” technology, says a leading general, ensure its use is “no longer unthinkable”.

James Bradley, the best-selling author of Flags of Our Fathers and son of one of the US marines who raised the flag on Iwo Jima, said, “[One] great myth we’re seeing play out is that of Obama as some kind of peaceful guy who’s trying to get rid of nuclear weapons. He’s the biggest nuclear warrior there is. He’s committed us to a ruinous course of spending a trillion dollars on more nuclear weapons. Somehow, people live in this fantasy that because he gives vague news conferences and speeches and feel-good photo-ops that somehow that’s attached to actual policy. It isn’t.”

On Obama’s watch, a second cold war is under way. The Russian president is a pantomime villain; the Chinese are not yet back to their sinister pig-tailed caricature – when all Chinese were banned from the United States – but the media warriors are working on it.

Neither Hillary Clinton nor Bernie Sanders has mentioned any of this. There is no risk and no danger for the United States and all of us. For them, the greatest military build-up on the borders of Russia since World War Two has not happened. On May 11, Romania went “live” with a Nato “missile defence” base that aims its first-strike American missiles at the heart of Russia, the world’s second nuclear power.

In Asia, the Pentagon is sending ships, planes and special forces to the Philippines to threaten China. The US already encircles China with hundreds of military bases that curve in an arc up from Australia, to Asia and across to Afghanistan. Obama calls this a “pivot”.

As a direct consequence, China reportedly has changed its nuclear weapons policy from no-first-use to high alert and put to sea submarines with nuclear weapons. The escalator is quickening.

It was Hillary Clinton who, as Secretary of State in 2010, elevated the competing territorial claims for rocks and reef in the South China Sea to an international issue; CNN and BBC hysteria followed; China was building airstrips on the disputed islands. In its mammoth war game in 2015, Operation Talisman Sabre, the US practiced “choking” the Straits of Malacca through which pass most of China’s oil and trade. This was not news.

Clinton declared that America had a “national interest” in these Asian waters. The Philippines and Vietnam were encouraged and bribed to pursue their claims and old enmities against China. In America, people are being primed to see any Chinese defensive position as offensive, and so the ground is laid for rapid escalation. A similar strategy of provocation and propaganda is applied to Russia.

Clinton, the “women’s candidate”, leaves a trail of bloody coups: in Honduras, in Libya (plus the murder of the Libyan president) and Ukraine. The latter is now a CIA theme park swarming with Nazis and the frontline of a beckoning war with Russia. It was through Ukraine – literally, borderland -- that Hitler’s Nazis invaded the Soviet Union, which lost 27 million people. This epic catastrophe remains a presence in Russia. Clinton’s presidential campaign has received money from all but one of the world’s ten biggest arms companies. No other candidate comes close.

Sanders, the hope of many young Americans, is not very different from Clinton in his proprietorial view of the world beyond the United States. He backed Bill Clinton’s illegal bombing of Serbia. He supports Obama’s terrorism by drone, the provocation of Russia and the return of special forces (death squads) to Iraq. He has nothing to say on the drumbeat of threats to China and the accelerating risk of nuclear war. He agrees that Edward Snowden should stand trial and he calls Hugo Chavez – like him, a social democrat – “a dead communist dictator”. He promises to support Clinton if she is nominated.

The election of Trump or Clinton is the old illusion of choice that is no choice: two sides of the same coin. In scapegoating minorities and promising to “make America great again”, Trump is a far right-wing domestic populist; yet the danger of Clinton may be more lethal for the world.

“Only Donald Trump has said anything meaningful and critical of US foreign policy,” wrote Stephen Cohen, emeritus professor of Russian History at Princeton and NYU, one of the few Russia experts in the United States to speak out about the risk of war.

In a radio broadcast, Cohen referred to critical questions Trump alone had raised. Among them: why is the United States “everywhere on the globe”? What is NATO’s true mission? Why does the US always pursue regime change in Iraq, Syria, Libya, Ukraine? Why does Washington treat Russia and Vladimir Putin as an enemy?

 The hysteria in the liberal media over Trump serves an illusion of “free and open debate” and “democracy at work”. His views on immigrants and Muslims are grotesque, yet the deporter-in-chief  of vulnerable people from America is not Trump but Obama, whose betrayal of people of colour is his legacy: such as the warehousing of a mostly black prison population, now more numerous than Stalin’s gulag.

This presidential campaign may not be about populism but American liberalism, an ideology that sees itself as modern and therefore superior and the one true way. Those on its right wing bear a likeness to 19th century Christian imperialists, with a God-given duty to convert or co-opt or conquer.

In Britain, this is Blairism. The Christian war criminal Tony Blair got away with his secret preparation for the invasion of Iraq largely because the liberal political class and media fell for his “cool Britannia”. In the Guardian, the applause was deafening; he was called “mystical”. A distraction known as identity politics, imported from the United States, rested easily in his care.

History was declared over, class was abolished and gender promoted as feminism; lots of women became New Labour MPs. They voted on the first day of Parliament to cut the benefits of single parents, mostly women, as instructed. A majority voted for an invasion that produced 700,000 Iraqi widows.

The equivalent in the US are the politically correct warmongers on the New York Times, the Washington Post and network TV who dominate political debate. I watched a furious debate on CNN about Trump’s infidelities. It was clear, they said, a man like that could not be trusted in the White House. No issues were raised. Nothing on the 80 per cent of Americans whose income has collapsed to 1970s levels.  Nothing on the drift to war. The received wisdom seems to be “hold your nose” and vote for Clinton: anyone but Trump. That way, you stop the monster and preserve a system gagging for another war.

~ John Pilger originally hails from Australia.  Arriving in London, Pilger freelanced, then joined Reuters, moving to the London Daily Mirror, Britain's biggest selling newspaper, which was then changing to a serious tabloid. He became chief foreign correspondent and reported from all over the world, covering numerous wars, notably Vietnam. He became the youngest journalist to receive Britain's highest award for journalism, Journalist of the Year and was the first to win it twice. He also has created many award winning documentaries.

Shades of Black & Blue

Are we on
the reservation
or not?

Have we become
the latest version
of those
to be caged
by Mr. Big?

Taking care
of 'biz' at home
now out the door
fish to fry
in cheaper

What to do?

Many attempts
many failures
to slay the
dark beast
that marks
our door
have always
been hard
to vanquish
but try
we must

Still the beast
our harvests
its bootprint
leaves ugly
marks and stains
much pain
around our
orbiting satellite

The people
are turned
one against
the other

our unity
thru solidarity
made difficult
but not impossible
by those
who say
they know best

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Managing the Syrian Narrative

21WIRE editor Patrick Henningsen speaks to RT International about the recent push by Washington to create a new US-friendly militia, allegedly to “fight ISIS” in north eastern Syria.

Electoral Illusion & Deception

Financier George Soros and Hillary Clinton.  Soros is doing his best to support her campaign for president

  • I've been saying for some time that I believe Donald Trump was encouraged to enter the Republican presidential race in order to throw a bomb inside that operation to ensure that Hillary Clinton gets elected.  I've mentioned in the past about Bill Clinton's phone call to Trump shortly before he declared for the Republican nomination.  The Washington Post ran a story where it is quite clear that Bill Clinton was encouraging Trump to run.  Why would he dare do that?  My opinion is that the corporate oligarchy that wants Hillary Clinton to be elected understands she has massive negatives with the American people.  The only way to get her elected is to have a Republican candidate with even more negatives running against her.  Trump fits that requirement.  Every day I hear more mainstream 'news' stories reporting on some lefty Bernie Sanders supporter saying they will 'hold their nose' and vote for Clinton because 'The Donald' is just so bad.  Works like a charm.

  • But this kind of high stakes 'democracy' can't be left to chance - or to the unobstructed will of the great unwashed - the voting public.  There have to be intervening forces put into place to help direct and act out the script.  Enter super financier and philanthropist George Soros and his Open Society Foundations.  Soros has long been known as an anti-Communist from Hungary and has been a leading force in the directing and funding of 'Color Revolutions', particularly in Eastern Europe.  From those so-called 'battles for democracy' have come a series of right-wing governments that have then been invited to join NATO which has led to US-NATO bases and military operations now reaching the Russian borders.  Soros and his foundations rely on NGO's to do the 'pro-democracy' grassroots work that leads to regime change which is then redirected into the hands of right-wing governments under US-NATO control.  The 2014 coup d'etat in Ukraine just being the latest example.

  • China and Russia recently have passed laws severely restricting the funding of NGO's in their countries largely out of concern for Soros, USAID, National Endowment for Democracy, and CIA interventions in the affairs of those two nations.  It has become clear in recent years that the US-NATO want regime change in Moscow and Beijing and they use many tools including NGO funding to create internal destabilization toward that end.

  • But Soros is not only active overseas with his internal political manipulation tactics.  Even inside the US we find Soros actively funding operations to ensure that his favorite candidates and policies carry the day.  His support for the candidacy of Hillary Clinton is one such case.  Thus it becomes interesting to begin to trace the links between the Soros support for Clinton and his funding of domestic NGO's who are being used to organize anti-Trump events which build the fear and create social chaos around the Trump campaign.  This strategy is obviously being carried out to further drive up Trump's negatives by unsuspecting organizations who believe they are just speaking out against Trump's racism, anti-immigrant positions and the like.

  • Over the years Soros (calling himself a liberal who believes in democracy) has funded many organizations on the left.  My personal opinion, based on 36 years of active involvement in the peace & justice movement, is that 'liberal foundations' are used by the corporate oligarchy to direct messages on the left, set in place gate keepers against more radical organizing, and to appoint 'leaders' on the left by giving them access to funding, media, etc.  Over the years I saw foundation funders kill the Nuclear Freeze Movement in the mid-1980's by requiring them to move the national campaign office from St. Louis to Washington DC.  Once inside the vortex of Washington the freeze movement died a quick death - the corporate Democrats were getting worried about surging grassroot demands to end the nuclear arms race which would impact military production at the congressional level.  Similarly we've seen in more recent years that some 'progressive funders' have mandated that grant recipients stop using the word 'disarmament' and instead use 'arms control' if they wished to qualify for grants.  In just recent days I saw an email about one 'progressive funder' saying that it was time to redefine the word 'peace' because organizations having received their funding over the years had not been able to stop endless wars and arms races.  So I am absolutely convinced that money drives the mission across the NGO world - our movements get watered down and redirected off message if they want the cash.

  • The Soros Open Society Foundations have over the years funded many 'left or liberal' groups which include AFSC, Center for American Progress (a Clinton linked operation), Democracy Now, Human Rights Watch (also linked to Clinton), and Veterans For Peace.  This is just a tiny list of Soros grantees.  

  • In recent months though I have been hearing about Soros funding NGO's across the US to specifically focus on the Trump campaign.  I've heard that and Veterans For Peace (among many others) have received grants from Soros to help organize protests at Trump rallies.  Lately we've seen some of these events turn quite ugly.  I am certain that progressive groups taking these funds from Soros don't see themselves as doing back-door work for the Clinton campaign - but in the end that is what is basically happening.  Soros has a track record of funding NGO's in order to create social chaos which then helps oligarchic efforts in a particular country to take control of the government.  I do see a clear link between the anti-Trump NGO operations and their results contributing to helping Clinton get elected to the White House.  

  • Because of the massive corporate money now put into elections in the US (and around the world) the will of the people gets diluted and redirected into pre-determined places by the forces at work behind the scenes.  Many good-hearted and well-meaning individuals and NGO's get used by this dirty game to become two-bit actors in the wider circus side show called elections.  I am sure it is hard for a poor struggling NGO to turn down hundreds of thousands of dollars when offered - especially if the purpose of the grant is to go after someone like Donald Trump.

  • I write all this not to point fingers at any particular NGO but instead to help shine a light on the 'behind the scenes manipulations' of democracy that are going on today and getting worse.  It is wise for all of us to see the depths that the corporate oligarchy will go in order to control our societies.   

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Message for Memorial Day Parade in Brunswick, Maine

Times Record (Brunswick, Maine)

By Bruce K. Gagnon

The 2016 theme for the local Memorial Day Parade is “Remembering Pearl Harbor, 75 Years Later.” This theme has many contemporary applications that I would like to address.

After the surrender of the fascist Japanese government in 1945 a new constitution was written for Japan.

On May 3, 1947, Japan’s postwar constitution went into effect. The progressive constitution granted universal suffrage, stripped Emperor Hirohito of all but symbolic power, stipulated a bill of rights, abolished peerage and outlawed Japan’s right to make war. The document was largely the work of Supreme Allied Commander Douglas MacArthur and his occupation staff.

Over the years the Japanese people came to strongly support the new constitution, particularly Article 9 which reads in part: “Aspiring sincerely to an international peace based on justice and order, the Japanese people forever renounce war as a sovereign right of the nation and the threat or use of force as means of settling international disputes.”

Japan’s crimes against their Asia-Pacific neighbors, particularly their brutal occupation of China, are well known. What is not so well known is that even during WW II a Japanese peace movement existed that resisted, often at risk of their own lives, the aggressive war making of their nation.
So following the establishment of the new Japanese constitution in 1947 the Japanese people have come to cherish the peaceful Article 9. Sadly Article 9 is now in danger.

Since the US announced “pivot” of 60 percent of Pentagon forces into the Asia-Pacific to “contain” China, Washington has been pressuring Japan to get rid of Article 9. The US has repeatedly called on Japan to begin a major military mobilization to assist the US in trying to control China. China of course has directly seen the results of a militarized Japan and has repeatedly spoken out against this serious development.

Current Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is widely viewed as a right-wing nationalist. Shinzo Abe is the grandson of a former WW II fascist leader in the imperial Japanese war cabinet who was considered a “Class A war criminal.” The Japanese peace movement today considers Abe a fascist.

Prime Minister Abe has begun to push through the national Diet (Parliament) in Tokyo a “reinterpretation” of Article 9 that will allow Abe to join US offensive wars around the globe. During the last year the Japanese people have overwhelmingly denounced these developments out of fear that the imperialist strains that have been dormant in Japan since the end of WW II are returning to the surface – this time sadly under the encouragement of the US government.

“Article 9 is one of the very keystones of the Japanese post-war constitution; it renounces war and says that Japan will not maintain [offensive] military forces,”’ explains Toshiaki Miura, a journalist at one of Japan’s leading daily newspapers, Asahi Shimbun. “Article 9 restrains the military and has made pacifism an important part of Japan’s national psyche.”

Recent polls have revealed that the majority of the Japanese people want to keep the Peace Constitution as it is — in one Asahi Shimbun poll 68 percent opposed the change to Article 9. Religious leaders and prominent civil society organizations have also raised their concerns with massive protests throughout the country.

Critics, including constitutional scholars, say any such reinterpretation would make a mockery of formal amendment procedures and essentially gut Article 9, opening the door to bigger changes later despite assurances to the contrary.

“Abe knows that once even a tiny hole is opened, he and future conservatives can make the hole bigger with less popular resistance,” said Sophia University professor Koichi Nakano, a member of a group of academics opposed to the change.

On May 30 we will carry a specially made banner during the annual parade that reads: PeaceWorks Supports Keeping Peaceful Article 9 in Japanese Constitution — “Forever Renounce War.”

We urge our midcoast neighbors to seriously reflect on this important story during this time of remembrance.

~ Bruce K. Gagnon is a member of PeaceWorks and lives in Bath.

Note:  Peaceful friends are invited to walk with PeaceWorks and VFP in the Topsham-Brunswick Memorial Day parade.  Starts at 9:00 am in Topsham on Monday, May 30.  We will dress in black. 

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

June 18 'Christening' Protest in Maine

Russian Coverage of Ukraine Workshop in New York

One Russian TV station covered the UNAC workshop I participated in during last Saturday's Left Forum event in New York City.  We talked about the situation in Ukraine with emphasis on the May 2, 2014 massacre in Odessa by the neo-Nazis.

Of course we had no coverage by any media from the US - mainstream or alternative.  No surprise there.

At the end of the news video the reporter mentions the Odessa Mothers Council petition calling for an international independent investigation of the May 2 massacre.  You can sign the petition here

It's Only $$$$$$$$$$$$$$

Monday, May 23, 2016

U.S. Continues to Destabilize Moldova - Confronted by Locals

Vineyard of the Saker reports in part:

Recently, Robert D. Kaplan, a former Stratfor Chief Geopolitical Analyst, and currently a senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security (CNAS) published a book “In Europe’s Shadow” where he lays out a plan to reunite Romania with “its lost province of Moldova.”

US Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Victoria Nuland [who ran the 2014 coup in Ukraine] visited Moldova back in January, with the task to coerce Moldova’s government and its oligarchs to change the country’s Constitution provision of neutrality.

Before she left, she gave a short speech at the American Embassy in Bucharest after a private dinner with PM Ciolos and President Klaus.

“We powerfully support the desire of the people in Moldova to have responsible leaders who can implement reforms. This is the best way to assure the future of Moldova. Romania and the United States, in conjunction with NATO, have support programs in place to assure the security of Moldova but the government has to work to implement these programs.”

Moldova is one of the poorest countries in Eastern Europe, and its economy heavily relies on Russia. 

Everyone understands that a NATO membership will cut all economic ties with Russia, including jobs, and it will turn Moldova into a failed state, or in the CIA doublespeak, the country would stop being vulnerable to “Russian pressure.”

NATO also planned military drills in neutral Moldova, chosen to start on May 2nd, the day of remembrance for the victims of the Odessa Massacre.

According to V.V. Pyakin, a political analyst with the Concept Technologies Foundation, a think tank located in St. Petersburg, NATO was in a process of conducting a full-scale invasion of Moldova with the annexation of a Southern part of Ukraine including Odessa to construct a NATO Navy base there. Moldova was supposed to become a part of Romania automatically with the US military forces arriving to the capital and taking  over the government of Moldova. That’s why NATO needed all those military “drills” in the Black Sea region and in the Baltics simultaneously.

When the patriotic forces of Moldavia discovered that NATO was about to enter the territory of Moldova in four formations, 100+ motorized units each, they protested loudly and blocked the entrance of NATO troops on the border. Meanwhile, the biggest political fraction in Moldova threatened the impeachment of the president for treason, if  NATO troops would be allowed to enter the country.

By Victory Day [May 9 celebration of the defeat of Nazi Germany by the former Soviet Union] it became apparent that the Nuland-Kaplan-NATO plan for invasion of Moldova was foiled. All Americans could do was to “crash” a Victory Day parade in the center of Moldova’s capital by coming uninvited and bringing their motorized vehicles to it.  [One arrogant US Army officer was caught on video ordering Moldovan citizens to leave their own celebration in the city square.]

And that’s where NATO troops and Moldovan patriots came face to face.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Is NATO Really Preparing for War with Russia?

By Leonid Ivashov (General-Colonel, president of the Academy of Geopolitical Issues, International Journalism professor at Moscow State Institute of International Relations)

One of the most important questions of our time is whether NATO is really preparing for an open war with Russia, and the alliance has already found the place where it starts, or is it a game of nerves, verbal and declarative, but, in fact, not dangerous fuss?

This isn't horseplay, but serious preparations for war. And not only in the region of our North-Western borders, but along the entire perimeter of Russia. And the start of active preparation for the military phase was triggered by the "National Security Strategy of the USA", which was adopted in February last year. It stated that there is no multi-polar world, because there is no alternative to American leadership. This whole "Strategy" is riddled with phrases like:

We will defend our interests from a position of strength. We will conduct combat operations anywhere in the world. We will act outside of international law and so on...

And the main target of these military preparations is Russia. And all because Russia is slowly but consistently changing the world. Turned Eurasia towards itself, began to develop relationships in Eurasian, and other regions. The Shanghai cooperation organization, CSTO, Eurasian economic union, the group of BRICS countries – all this is created on the initiative of Russia. That is, the Americans are loosing the lead. Their global domination today in fact is melting. And the goal of the United States – to pin down, and even to crush Russia, as they do with those smaller countries that try to resist. That's all: the goal of global West is to stop the independent foreign policy of Russia.

With regard to Russian threat. I would advise NATO generals to calculate the ratio of personnel of the armed forces of NATO countries, equipment and qualitative characteristics. They clearly show that it is NATO that is creating shock troops, which threaten Russia, conducting exercises: military-air, naval, ground. Regularly in the Baltic sea area BALTOPS exercises are conducted, during which they practice strategic airlift of US troops from American territory. And that the Baltic States scream that Russia is going to conquer them – first, we don't need them. And even if they beg to join Russia or for the rapprochement with Russia, there is no need to hurry, they should not be accepted. Such countries are always better to have as an enemy than an ally or part of Russia. However, we must defend the Kaliningrad region, and not only by military means, but also with soft power. There, unfortunately, Germans and Poles are more active than our officials from Russia.

Lets look were around our borders NATO is now most active? Eastern European countries, which joined NATO and the EU, became the weakest European link. Americans are now using them against Europe and against Russia. The same Poles: whatever the Americans tell them – they salute, and say: "Yes, sir!". This also applies to missile defense system, and strengthening of the naval component of Poland in the Baltic sea region. Now supposedly the Poles are asking the Americans to open a military base.

Look at Romania: Americans patched the holes on the old Romanian ships, and now actively use them in the Black sea region, deployed some F-22s, modern combat aircraft.

The Balts have nowhere to go: they say yes to everything, as long as America supports the current political elite in power, and fills its pockets.

These are completely dependent countries – the countries of Eastern Europe. Sometimes Hungary, the Czech Republic try to resist, particularly in relation to anti-Russian sanctions, but they are immediately threatened with a coup, anti-government rallies, accused of corruption... The Americans got a strong hold over Europe, including Western, through the instrument of weak Eastern Europe. South-East Europe is also pitted against Russia. The Balkans have always been the military fuse of Europe, and today Americans are trying to turn it into a powder keg. In fact, the accession of Montenegro to NATO has already been decided, however, God help if the whole of Montenegro collects two battalions. So there is no military gain here, but Montenegrians are the destroyers of the Orthodox Slavic world. Milo Djukanovic is, in fact, the Western, Pro-American agent, and the task of the West is to destabilize not just the Balkan region but the entire Orthodox Slavic space. The people of Montenegro, of course, are against NATO, against quarrel with Russia, with Serbia, but no one asks the people, and demands for a referendum are just rejected. The same difficult situation, on the brink of civil war, is in Macedonia. Republika Srpska within Bosnia and Herzegovina is subjected to coup attempts for elimination from political arena of the popular president Milorad Dodik. [See an example of how US is destabilizing Moldova here]

And Serbia itself is stretched, either you join NATO and then the EU, or you will live in a blockade, as today. For Serbia to apply for EU membership, it is necessary to recognize Kosovo's independence, and in the Constitution of the Republic of Serbia Kosovo is its integral part, but it is forced to do so.

In a prosperous at first glance Croatia we see growing social tension: rallies and protests are commonplace. So the Balkans are again on the brink of internal turmoil with a threat of external military intervention.

Will the Balkans become the stage for a local conflict, which will eventually grow into global? It is unlikely to turn into a global conflict, because today's Russia will not militarily interfere. The West will just break the Serbs, so that the Serbs, as Bulgarians now, will unquestioningly obey their masters from Washington and Brussels.

Today we are observing an attempt to transform the Orthodox-Slavic world into some semblance of present-day Ukraine.

Stop the Lies, Close U.S. Bases Around the Globe

  • Our 'Situation in Ukraine' workshop went well yesterday at the Left Forum in New York City and we had good attendance - especially considering there were a slew of them to choose from at the same time.  We had a woman from Odessa, Ukraine with us in the workshop who did an excellent job of sharing the reality of living in the post-coup country that is being dismantled by the US-EU in their project to destabilize things along the Russian border.  One Russian TV channel covered the event and interviewed me after things were over.  The second workshop I participated in (Just Transition) was where I presented my PowerPoint full of photos from our efforts in Bath, Maine to bring the conversion of the Navy shipyard to public consciousness.  

  • Later in the day yesterday I had the honor to meet award winning journalist John Pilger who is in NYC doing interviews for his upcoming documentary film 'The Next War'.  He interviewed me for about an hour and we had a very interesting back-and-forth discussion of everything from US domestic politics, Obama's 'pivot' into the Asia-Pacific, space technology, hope, and spirituality.  I liked him alot, a very grounded and gentle man.

  • Also yesterday about the same time I was doing the Pilger interview a protest in support of the Okinawan people was held at Grand Central Station in NYC.  One of the organizers was Rachel Clark (a Japanese-American woman who was the interpreter during our VFP trip to Okinawa last December).  She wrote this morning:

We explained about the recent rape murder case which is one out of more than 9 thousand recorded cases in the last 71 years. US bases do not protect their host countries. Instead they bring crimes. As our responsibility, we have to close our overseas bases, 800 of more of them. We also need to re-examine and reallocate our tax money so that peace making effort gets more budget than military-industrial complex.

  • I also noticed today that a protest was held in Okinawa at the Camp Schwab US Marine base where more than 1,500 people were led by women as they silently marched to express their growing outrage against US bases and the continued rapes and killings by US military personnel there.  What will it take for the American people to see that our string of 1,000 military outposts around the world are fueling hatred against us?  Shut them down and bring the troops home.  Put them to work building rail systems, solar power, wind turbines, tidal power systems, and retrofitting homes across the nation for energy conservation.  

Beautiful Statement

Rapper activist Immortal Technique on immigration and purposeful injustice as he supports Green Party's Jill Stein for President.

We're not talking about putting a band aid on a gashed wound. The Green Party takes the non-watered down positions that Democrats pretend to have.

How could Obama talk about Black Lives Matter? You want to hold up a picture of Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown, I have some pictures of Black and Brown children killed by your drown strikes. 

Stop being afraid to teach the truth.

Sunday Song