The data show that there is little connection between suicide terrorism and Islamic fundamentalism, or any one of the world’s religions. In fact, the leading instigators of suicide attacks are the Tamil Tigers in Sri Lanka, a Marxist-Leninist group whose members are from Hindu families but who are adamantly opposed to religion. This group committed 76 of the 315 incidents, more suicide attacks than Hamas.
Rather, what nearly all suicide terrorist attacks have in common is a specific secular and strategic goal: to compel modern democracies to withdraw military forces from territory that the terrorists consider to be their homeland. Religion is rarely the root cause, although it is often used as a tool by terrorist organizations in recruiting and in other efforts in service of the broader strategic objective.
Robert A. Pape
Dying to Win: The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism
In war, State power is pushed to its ultimate, and, under the slogans of “defense” and “emergency,” it can impose a tyranny upon the public such as might be openly resisted in time of peace. War thus provides many benefits to a State, and indeed every modern war has brought to the warring peoples a permanent legacy of increased State burdens upon society.
Murray N. Rothbard
Egalitarianism as a Revolt Against Nature, pp. 80–81
The Libertarian’s basic attitude toward war must … be: it is legitimate to use violence against criminals in defense of one’s rights of person and property; it is completely impermissible to violate the rights of other innocent people. War, then, is only proper when the exercise of violence is rigorously limited to the individual criminals.
Trump has vetoed Congress’s effort to keep him from going to war against Iran unilaterally. Nothing remarkable there. We’ve come to expect such things from the fraud who posed as antiwar.
What’s interesting is that Trump has reminded of what a narcissist he is. That fact is so much a part of the landscape that it can be hard to notice these days.
In vetoing the bill passed under the War Powers Resolution, a 1970s post-Vietnam attempt to restore Congress’s exclusive power under the Constitution to make war, Trump said, “This was a very insulting resolution….”
Insulting? That’s why he vetoed it? Apparently Trump is incapable of seeing congressional action he doesn’t like as anything but personal. It’s hard to imagine another president saying this publicly. Other presidents would have pushed back (erroneously) against the constitutional war-powers argument, but they wouldn’t have made it personal, even if they suspected it.
As I’ve often said, Trump is a caricature of the establishment politician, and that’s why the establishment hates him.
0:57 – What is Libertarianism? – NAO (Non-Aggression Obligation)
7:29 – The Kissinger Approach to History
18:24 – Kissinger’s World Government Justification
22:00 – 9/11 Response & War in Afghanistan
28:30 – F.B.I. Terrorist Plots
43:22 – “Terrorist Plots Helped ALong by the FBI – NYTimes” and Bin Laden deal & 9/11 motive
52:50 – U.S. in Libya under Obama
57:55 – Benghazi 1:04:30 – U.S. in Syria under Obama
1:06:12 – Operation Timber Sycamore & the U.S. in Syria
Ben Swann & Obama – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ceobsac7LE8
John Kerry Leaked Audio: https://youtu.be/41HhRABl3kM?t=1409
‘As President, I Don’t Bluff’ – https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2012/03/obama-to-iran-and-israel-as-president-of-the-united-states-i-dont-bluff/253875/
Joe Biden at Harvard – Key allies: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=25aDP7io30U
Gen. Wesley Clark – 7 Countries 5 Years: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gTbg11pCwOc
1:18:41 – U.S. Role in Somalia under Bush, Obama and Trump
U.S. Government to Blame for Somalia Misery https://www.fff.org/explore-freedom/article/u-s-government-to-blame-for-somalias-misery/
“Unfortunately, sir, you have no choice,” Mattis told Trump, according to officials. “You will be a wartime president.” https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/can-jim-mattis-check-an-impulsive-president-and-still-retain-his-trust/2018/02/07/289297a2-0814-11e8-8777-2a059f168dd2_story.html
1:31:46 – U.S. Role in Yemen under Obama and Trump
Washington’s War in Yemen Backfires – https://www.thenation.com/article/archive/washingtons-war-yemen-backfires/
Clinton Foundation / Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Donation – https://www.clintonfoundation.org/contributors?category=%2410%2C000%2C001+to+%2425%2C000%2C000
Trump on U.S. / Saudi Alliance for the MIC – https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefings-statements/statement-president-donald-j-trump-standing-saudi-arabia/
Military Industrial Complex, President Eisenhower – https://www.npr.org/2011/01/17/132942244/ikes-warning-of-military-expansion-50-years-later
War is a Racket – Smedley Butler: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/War_Is_a_Racket
Martha Mundy’s work on Yemen: https://sites.tufts.edu/wpf/strategies-of-the-coalition-in-the-yemen-war/
Madeleine Albright 60 Minutes – 500,000 dead children: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FbIX1CP9qr4
Bin Laden Letter to the Americans: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2002/nov/24/theobserver
1:51:20 – Waco Siege – Operation Showtime, Waco Rules of Engagement, Waco: A New Revelation
Trump v. Jeb! – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H4ThZcq1oJQ
2:08:52 – Oklahoma City Bombing Cover-Up
The Ultimate Oklahoma City Bombing Archive – https://libertarianinstitute.org/okc/
2:13:08 – Most important things you learned from Jacob Hornberger, Pat Buchanan, Murray N. Rothbard, Ron Paul, and William Norman Grigg.
This is from November 16, 2008, and the resolution is, “Is There a Justified Military Presence in Iraq?” Will obviously argues for the negative.
I made sure to watch the entire debate before I posted this. Will’s opponent comes from the “America is a Christian Nation and Muslims wish to slit out throats in the streets” school of “thought.”
What you will hear from Will is a well-thought out presentation in which he explains everything from the US empowering Iran with Iraq’s regime change, to a detailing of the “redirection” by the Bush administration. He gives a historical analysis all the way back to the Iranian coup in 1953, and finishes off in his closing arguments with a fiery denunciation of the American Empire. He even includes a section on Clinton’s war in the Balkans.
I strongly recommend watching this to remember why he was the best of us. If you’re not willing to devote the time, at least watch his closing statement which will infuriate, and inspire you. It starts at 1:21:25.
Pete asked Scott Horton to come on the show and respond to comments “former” CIA employee Mike Baker made about Qassem Soleimani on the Joe Rogan Experience.
Scott Horton is Managing Director of The Libertarian Institute, host of Antiwar Radio for Pacifica, 90.7 FM KPFK in Los Angeles and KUCR 88.3 in Riverside, podcasts the Scott Horton Show from scotthorton.org, and is the Editorial Director of Antiwar.com. He’s conducted more than 5,000 interviews since 2003. He is also the author of Fool’s Errand: Time to End the War in Afghanistan (2017).
What is this banging hot white chick doing in the Gaza Strip or Venezuela?
In this offensive political comedy episode, we follow the sexy journalist Abby Martin, to dive into how the Secret CIA Empire actually works. From Coups in Venezuela and Ukraine, to propaganda of the empire though the map.
Pete invited Ryan Dawson to come on the show. Ryan is the host of The Anti Neo-Con Report which appears on his YouTube channel, Ryan Dawson, linked below. Pete mentions the main countries the US government is constantly fighting or threatening and asks Ryan to talk about who specifically is benefitting from these endless wars.
“It is, however, insane and intolerable that peace depends on the restraint of the Islamic Republic and an American president given to rage-tweeting war-crime threats,” the Cato Institute’s Gene Healy, who studies presidential power, writes in “Trump the Decider.”
“No one fallible human being should be entrusted with the war powers now vested in the presidency. Now, more than ever, Congress needs to do everything in its power to reclaim its authority over war and peace.”
By what authority did Trump order the drone-assassination of Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani and key Iraqi militia commanders in Iraq, all former allies in the fight against ISIS? Writes Healy:
For now, the official rationale is classified. In terms of public justification, all we have is some hand-waving by Trump’s national security adviser about the president’s “constitutional authorities as commander in chief to defend our nation” and the 17-year old Authorization for the Use of Military Force in Iraq (2002 AUMF). Neither comes close to vesting the president with the power to set off a whole new war.
The 2002 AUMF authorizes the president to use military force in order to “defend the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq” and enforce various UN resolutions “regarding Iraq.” Unless “45” is going to break out the presidential sharpie and change the “q”s to “n”s, that’s not going to cut it. Neither will the 2001 AUMF, as I’ve explained at length elsewhere (See: “Repeal Old AUMFs and Salt the Earth”).
Healy disposes of the “self-defense” rationale for Trump’s act of war without a congressional declaration of war. I’d only add that if no US troops were in Iraq, they would not be subject to attack by anyone there.
The Trump administration has backed off of the narrative that Soleimani was in Baghdad to plot attacks on four American embassies, but they haven’t addressed the imminent threat he truly posed. While it’s true the Iranian general can’t be credibly linked to the deaths of Americans or a future plot; he is absolutely linked to plotting peace in Yemen without US support, threatening the world empire’s dominance in the region.
By now we’ve heard enough official explanations of Trump’s assassination of Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani and others to realize they are all nonsense. (And Secretary of State Mike Pompeo now admits it.) Trump killed Soleimani because, egged on by his unsavory friends Saudi crown prince Mohammad bin Salman and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, he has it in for Iran. So when the opportunity to pull off the murder-by-drone came along, he took it. It’s not as though he thought he needed a special justification. It’s good to be the king — er, president.
Most official explanations have entailed some sort of threat to US military or diplomatic personnel, “interests,” or “assets.” And sometimes one US official has had no idea what another is talking about. Trump said four embassies were threatened, but his secretary of defense said that was news to him. Other explanations tie the killings to the breach of the US embassy in Baghdad that occurred after Iran and the US had exchanged strikes in Iraq that took the lives of 25 Iraqis and one American. In other words, it was retribution not prevention. (Killing Iran’s top general while on a peace mission to Iraq seems, let’s say, disproportionate to the temporary embassy breach in which no one was killed or injured.)
If all this is confusing, don’t worry about it: Trump says none of it matters.
But I want to focus on the the initial claim, namely, that Soleimani had been planning “imminent” attacks of some unspecified nature. This, by the way, is debunked by an NBC report that the assassination was planned seven months ago. But we’ll let that go right now.
Since no such attacks occurred, we are entitled to dismiss Trump’s claim. Had attacks been imminent, why would anyone believe that killing Soleimani would stop them? Assassinating him would seem more likely to guarantee them. They were imminent after all.
But let’s go a step deeper — into the grammar, or logic, of all this. I realize that people can use words in differing ways, but I can’t shake the thought that if you are planning to do something, the planned action cannot be imminent. If you tell me something is imminent, I take that to mean the planning is over; execution is next. (Pun unintended but noticed.)
So I would advise that the next time the government tells you it’s killed someone because he was planning an imminent attack, it’s lying.
While an eerie, surreal calm has fallen over US-Iranian relations, I wouldn’t assume we’re out of the woods yet. Trump had no reason to be confident that Iran’s response to his most recent escalation of violence would be little more than symbolic. Although he’s accepted that response more or less passively for now, with Trump, things can turn on a dime. Who can tell what determines his mood at any given time?
Contemplating Trump’s January 3 escalation of the previously relatively low-level conflict with Iran, one might be struck by how casually the US government (and others of course) treat innocent bystanders. That was among my first thoughts on hearing of the Trump-ordered drone assassinations of Iranian Maj. Gen. Qassim Soleimani, Iraqi militia commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, and others in Iraq.
By innocent bystanders, I don’t mean the commander of Iran’s Quds Force or the leaders of Iraq’s Shi’ite militias, which are part of the Iraqi security establishment, all of whom were allies of US forces in the fight against the Islamic State. (Remember the Islamic State, don’t you?, which the US had fertilized the ground for by declaring open season on Syria’s ruler and Iranian ally Assad?) I take as a given that no one among the rulers and military leaders of countries in the Middle East has clean hands. The same can be said for the rulers and military leaders from powers outside the Middle East that have intervened in the region. The case for nonintervention has never depended on the presence of good guys in any particular conflict. That case stands even when the targeted figures have been less than discriminating about whom they order shot. Interventionism is based simply on 1) the wisdom of keeping “one’s own” government on as tight a leash as possible and 2) the knowledge that the law of unintended horrific consequence is always in effect. After all we’ve lived through since 2001 — Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Yemen, among others — must we really be reminded of this?
By innocent life I’m also not even referring to American military and diplomatic personnel. Americans in Iraq may indeed be killed, injured, and captured as a result of Trump’s assassinations, but they are hardly innocent. On the contrary, they are there because Bush II ordered an invasion force into Iraq and his successors have carried on the operation and have extended it beyond Iraq. Absent that program (or something equally insane), we would not now be at this juncture.
No, the innocent lives I’m talking about are Iraqi and Iranian (among others) — lives that Americans have been treating like garbage for years: the lives, that is, of foreigners. I realize that for many, and maybe most, Americans, foreign lives don’t rank high on their list of concerns. It’s the prerogative of history’s presumed chosen nation to put itself first and only, and indeed it has. You’ll often hear how many Americans have been killed in Afghanistan and Iraq (or Vietnam), but rarely how many Afghans and Iraqis (or Vietnamese) were murdered by Americans. Nor will you hear how America’s economic warfare against Iranians and others have cost countless lives because of its effect on food and medical supplies.
So my thoughts are with the overlooked innocent foreign lives that are on the line. Consider their predicament of powerlessness: they won’t even be able to vote in the upcoming presidential election. (Not that the one “cherished” vote that each American 18 and older possesses is worth terribly much.) I’m beginning to see why foreigners might want to “intervene” in American elections: it’s so easy for them to be on the receiving end of America’s lethal militarist imperial foreign policy; they certainly have an interest in the outcome of US presidential elections. The only country to blame for providing an incentive for foreign election intervention is the United States itself.
The threat to innocent Iranians from a war with the US — whatever form it may take — doesn’t take much imagination. One need only look up the US record of civilians deaths in the region and beyond to see what I mean.
But let’s not overlook the potential Iraqi victims. After all, Trump had the arrogance to assassinate the Iranian Soleimani on “friendly” Iraqi soil, and Iran’s missile response (though it apparently was bloodless) also occurred there. The battleground, if it eventuates, could mainly be in Iraq. (But let’s not forget Syria.)
By the way, Soleimani flew to Iraq after Trump had urged the Iraqis to facilitate a de-escalation of tensions between Iran and US best buddy Saudi Arabia. Soleimani had flown openly to Iraq’s international airport to deliver his response to a Saudi proposal at a meeting with Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi. That’s when he was killed by the American drone strike ordered by Trump. Who says? Prime Minister Abdul-Mahdi does.
Thus did Trump add dishonor to murder.
With the killing of the top Iranian military/political operative and Iraqi militia leaders — again, all of them US allies against the Islamic State — fragile Iraq could spin out of control, with grave consequences for regular innocent Iraqis, Shi’ite and Sunni. Iraq is mostly Shi’ite, of course, but it has pro-Iranian and not-so-pro-Iranian factions, not to mention Sunni Arab and Kurdish populations. How much influence Iran should have in Iraq’s internal affairs is a contentious matter there. (Since 2003 the US strangely has favored the pro-Iranian factions over their more nationalist rivals.) If Trump’s lethal strike ignites a civil war, no doubt he’ll be safe and sound at Mar-a-Lago or in the White House. So it’s no big deal to him. Small comfort for the bystanders thousands of miles away.
But even if the strike ends up uniting Iraqis against the US presence, the results could still be deadly to bystanders as the cycle of violence intensifies. Moreover, as veteran war correspondent Patrick Cockburn points out, with the shift in US attention from the remnants of ISIS to the Iraqi Shi’ites and Iran, “The biggest cheer in Iraq after the US drone strike [that killed Soleimani et al.] will have come from ISIS commanders in their isolated bolt-holes in the desert and mountains of Iraq and Syria.”
Sure, some American military and diplomatic personnel may bite the dust too, but that would just give Trump another pretext to order his military into heroic action. So no big deal. He’ll be adored at rallies, and maybe he’ll throw in a photo op with a Gold Star family or two.
I’m not worried about Trump. I worry for the innocent bystanders.
TGIF — The Goal Is Freedom — appears occasionally on Fridays.
US News Rand Paul and Thomas Massie are working with Democrats on ending the president's ability to shut down the internet. [Link] A member of Mueller's special counsel says he always doubted the Russian collusion story, and the investigation had a "get Trump" vibe....
From Genetic And Engineering News "According to Holick, the newly reported study provides a simple and cost-effective strategy to improve the body’s ability to fight the coronavirus and reduce the adverse clinical outcomes of COVID-19, including requiring ventilator...
Ballistics report doesn't support Kentucky AG's claim that Breonna Taylor's boyfriend shot cop A Kentucky State Police ballistics report does not support state Attorney General Daniel Cameron’s assertion that Breonna Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, shot a...
Here the obviously compromised-by-Russia CNN "reporters" Jasmine Wright, Rachel Janfaza and Gregory Krieg say there are reasons for leftists to oppose Biden: Progressive activists are wary over criminal justice under a Biden-Harris administration They cite all leftie...
Kevin Gosztola is back for another update on Julian Assange's extradition hearing, where most recently the defense has been debunking the prosecution's claim that Assange engaged in a hacking scheme with Chelsea Manning. Gosztola says the defense was able to establish...
Gilbert Doctorow discusses the latest aggressive maneuvers being carried out by the U.S. government and its allies toward Russia. Doctorow says that the flying of planes near Russia's border just for intelligence gathering is quite common and relatively...
Scott talks to Jessica Katzenstein from the Costs of War Project about her recent paper on the effects of America's foreign wars on police militarization. She and Scott trace police militarization to the escalation of the war on drugs in the 1990s, when SWAT raids...
Scott talks to Grant Smith about his ongoing work on the Israel lobby and its influence in America. Scott likens the story of Israel and Palestine to the history of the U.S. government and the Native Americans—for a long time everyone learned a skewed version that...
106 Minutes Some Strong Language Pete invited Vin Armani to return to the show to continue their conversation from a few months ago where they made predictions on what would be wrought from the government's response to the CV-19 pandemic. This time Vin and Pete talk...
47 Minutes Safe For Work Dr. Knut M. Wittkowski is a former Senior Research Associate at Rockefeller University and is the founder of ASDERA. Knut joins Pete to talk about his work to cure SARS-CoV-2. He details his research, talks about how it works and the next step...
49 Minutes Safe for Work Jose is the author of "The 10 Myths of Gun Control" and writes on such diverse topics as the "war on meat" and the history of Venezuela. Jose joins Pete to talk about the unprecedented number of guns that have been bought this year and how...
54 Minutes Some Strong Language Pete asked Matt Freeman from the Statist Quo podcast and Pat Watson from the Uncensored Tactical podcast to come on the show and talk about what Civil War in the U.S. would look like in the 21st Century. Drawing on their military...
On Conflicts of Interest #14, Kyle and Will break down the first presidential debate, which saw Donald Trump square off with Joe Biden in what many have dubbed the worst debate in American history. The candidates were light on substance, struggled to stay on topic,...
On Conflicts of Interest #13, Kyle and Will break down newly unsealed FBI docs showing the bureau feared repercussions for its legally and factually challenged investigation into the 2016 Trump campaign. Lebanon's newly installed acting prime minister, Mustapha Adib,...
On Conflicts of Interest #12, Kyle and Will break down the grand jury verdict on the Breonna Taylor murder, resulting in no charges directly linked to her death for any of the officers involved. A new report shows that the Pentagon handed $1 billion meant for...
On Conflicts of Interest #11, Kyle and Will update ongoing peace talks between the Taliban and the Afghan government, which continue despite a sharp spike in violence in the country. Trump's Department of Justice has designated Seattle, Portland and New York City as...
https://youtu.be/IfC6vPRCh4I The buyers do not pay for the toil and trouble the worker took nor for the length of time he spent in working. They pay for the products. The better the tools are which the worker uses in his job, the more he can perform in an hour, the...
https://youtu.be/V5AoZIxeRT8 Economics is neither a set of questions, nor a set of answers. It is an approach to understanding behavior. David Friedman, Law's Order Find Dr. Friedman’s website here: http://daviddfriedman.com/ & his blog here:...
https://youtu.be/pqRA42IegnU One very popular charge against anarchism is that it “means chaos.” ... anarchists have always believed that the establishment of their system would eliminate the chaotic elements now troubling the world. ... Th e root of the word comes...
https://youtu.be/FIsAklvdhMI ... I define anarchist society as one where there is no legal possibility for coercive aggression against the person or property of any individual. Anarchists oppose the State because it has its very being in such aggression, namely, the...
Tommy gives a short synopsis of how he saw the debate before diving into how agorists may leverage the modern political climate to their advantage. https://traffic.libsyn.com/secure/strangerencounterspodcast/th_real_winner_of_the_first_presidential_debate.mp3
Michael Harris joins Tommy to discuss the history, importance, and failures of the Supreme Court. He offers examples of supreme court justices acting in accordance with the Consritution, and examples of them ignoring the Constitution while offering up some ways the...
Quincy Johnson joins Tommy to discuss the views of political parties toward black people, personal responsibility, future plans, and mistakes made. https://traffic.libsyn.com/secure/strangerencounterspodcast/Q.mp3