Posts tagged blowback
If so, ok–I’ll respect that based upon an apparently objective process of arithmetic.
Terrorists – Dead Terrorists = Less Terrorists.
May I offer some other objective data points?
The Bureau of Investigative Journalism recently concluded that from June 2004 to September 2012, between 2562 and 3325 people were killed by drone strikes in Pakistan.
Of those, The BIJ estimates that 474-881 were civilians, and 176 were children; however given ease with which we can classify someone as a “militant” I am very skeptical of the low number of civilians in that quote.
What would you do if your friends, family members or loved ones were wrongly killed in a terrorist attack? Would you retaliate?
General David Petraeus’ former advisor describes the tendency of Muslims to do exactly that.
“Every one of these dead noncombatants represents an alienated family, a new desire for revenge, and more recruits for a militant movement…” -David Kilcullen, fomer advisor to Gen David Petreaus.
Just how insane have we become?! What kind of propaganda have we fallen for? Why have we accepted it so WILLINGLY?!
Our military is destroying lives, ruining our credibility and stoking the fires of war relentlessly around the world by killing these innocent people and all we can think to say in response is, “Well, they shouldn’t be hangin’ around with no damn terrorists then!”
The number of high-level targets killed as a percentage of total casualties is extremely low—estimated at just 2%. - Peter Bergen & Megan Braun, CNN
The below mini-documentary Living Under Drones is a superb and heart-rendering piece of journalism from Professor James Cavallaro of Stanford Law School’s International Human Rights and Conflict Resolution Clinic, and Professor Sarah Knuckey of the Global Justice Clinic at NYU School of Law.
Their recently released report with the same title is available for free download here; it is shocking and an absolute must-read, must-spread far and wide piece of journalism.
This disaster of humanity is ours to end.
It’s a scary world and there are a lot of very angry people in it. To the people out there who want to protect America/Israel/Europe/wherever by bombing people in Iran/Afghanistan/Yemen/wherever, “I get it!” I really do. It’s scary as hell thinking about a nuke going off on a civilian population (unless it was in Japan and “it saved good Americans lives and ended WW2,” right?).
I don’t blame you for wanting to defend our country and innocent people around the world by trying to attack our enemies before they attack us, it’s fight-or-flight; human nature.
However I do passionately advocate a balanced, objective view before deciding to sign and drive the “Kill ‘em all, let God sort them out!” train.
Here is yet another foreign policy expert detailing the incredible risks that policy poses and the counter-productive reality of our foreign policy.
Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding. -Albert Einstein
Drone attacks create terrorist safe havens, warns former CIA official via theguardian.co.uk
A former top terrorism official at the CIA has warned that President Barack Obama’s controversial drone programme is far too indiscriminate in hitting targets and could lead to such political instability that it creates terrorist safe havens.
Obama’s increased use of drones to attack suspected Islamic militants inPakistan, Afghanistan, Somalia and Yemen has become one of the most controversial aspects of his national security policy. He has launched at least 275 strikes in Pakistan alone; a rate of attack that is far higher than his predecessor George W Bush.
Defenders of the policy say it provides a way of hitting high-profile targets, such as al-Qaida number two, Abu Yahya al-Libi. But critics say the definition of militant is used far too broadly and there are too many civilian casualties. The London-based Bureau of Investigative Journalism estimates up to 830 civilians, including many women and children, might have been killed by drone attacks in Pakistan, 138 in Yemen and 57 in Somalia. Hundreds more have been injured.
Now Robert Grenier, who headed the CIA’s counter-terrorism center from 2004 to 2006 and was previously a CIA station chief in Pakistan, has told the Guardian that the drone programme is targeted too broadly. “It [the drone program] needs to be targeted much more finely. We have been seduced by them and the unintended consequences of our actions are going to outweigh the intended consequences,” Grenier said in an interview.
…but is it really just because of an indescribably awful movie?
Or is it because of blowback and the obvious consequences produced by the arrogant, violent, mostly unprovoked actions of our military that occupies The Middle East and the world at large?
Have there been plenty of crazy Arab attacks over “acts of Mohammed humiliation?” Absolutely. But we must remember the effects of our presence in the area; you certainly aren’t going to hear them in the media that seeks to rally us into a fervor to support yet another war.
Even good ol’ Noam Chomsky chimes in on the topic citing government documents to back up the theory.
Dr. Paul nails it in the vid below while Mr. Soetoro closes with his unique brand of handsome hubris: “We are the one indespensible nation in the world.” Wow.
Surely, there are many terrorists in the world who seek to do us harm. Many will act out of religious insanity; far more will seek to maim, kill and destroy in my belief due to blowback from our military adventures and hundreds of bases circling the globe.
If another major terrorist event happens around the world, it may be useful to remember the following admissions of state-sponsored terror so that when we are urged to rally around our governments, there may be reason for skepticism, deep thought and research as to who is to blame.
Forget the claims and allegations that false flag terror - governments attacking people and then blaming others in order to create animosity towards those blamed – has been used throughout history.
This essay will solely discuss government admissions to the use of false flag terror.
- A major with the Nazi SS admitted at the Nuremberg trials that – under orders from the chief of the Gestapo – he and some other Nazi operatives faked attacks on their own people and resources which they blamed on the Poles, to justify the invasion of Poland. Nazi general Franz Halder also testified at the Nuremberg trials that Nazi leader Hermann Goering admitted to setting fire to the German parliament building, and then falsely blaming the communists for the arson
- The CIA admits that it hired Iranians in the 1950′s to pose as Communists and stage bombings in Iran in order to turn the country against its democratically-elected prime minister
- Israel admits that an Israeli terrorist cell operating in Egypt planted bombs in several buildings, including U.S. diplomatic facilities, then left behind “evidence” implicating the Arabs as the culprits (one of the bombs detonated prematurely, allowing the Egyptians to identify the bombers, and several of the Israelis later confessed) (and see this and this)
The following slide show is fact-based and stacked with military, intelligence and political experts detailing the rarely-covered reality of terrorism and its roots.
Given the immense quantity of media blabbering we hear this is need-to-know information that might spark your mind into new paradigms of thought.
This is a intelligent plan that takes into account the enemy’s motivations, desires and capacity—not fear mongering and inefficient war plans promoted by a corrupt government.
Ron Paul maybe a long shot in November, but he’s America’s best bet on foreign policy.
BY MICHAEL SCHEUER | MAY 3, 2012
Ron Paul’s treatment by mainstream media, other Republican hopefuls, and the punditry makes me think the W.B. Yeats lines “Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold; Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world” also describe the year 2012 in the United States. Indeed, Paul’s experience in the nomination campaign suggests U.S. politics lacks reasoned substance, common sense, and an understanding of what America’s Founding Fathers intended.
Open up any newspaper to see the mess America has sunk itself into around the world: for example, facing off with China over a lone, non-American dissident whose safety has no relation to U.S. security. Yet today, Paul’s call for staying out of other people’s wars unless genuine U.S. national interests are at stake is deemed radical, immoral, even anti-American. Amazing.
If elected president, Paul’s most valuable contribution to a prosperous and secure American future might well lie in his application of a noninterventionist foreign policy, following the wishes of George Washington and the other founders.
Before explaining why Paul’s foreign policy would benefit the United States, it is worth rebutting those ill-educated jackasses in politics, the media, and the academy who denigrate the founders as “dead white males.” To them, the modern world is so different from Washington’s time that nothing the founders said or wrote pertains to contemporary foreign-policymaking. Such self-serving and ahistoric attitudes allow their advocates to pursue policies negating the Constitution, piling up debt, and fueling relentless intervention abroad.
Several years ago, Georgetown University’s distinguished professor emeritus Daniel Robinson cogently explained that the founding generation did not prescribe specific policies for unforeseeable future problems, but, rather, conducted a prolonged and profound seminar on “the nature of human nature.”
They examined history and their own experiences and devised a set of principles true not only in their own era and in ancient Sparta, but also for the unknowable American future: Human nature never changes; man is not perfectible; individuals and governments must live within their means; man is hard-wired for conflict; and small government, frequent elections, and secure private property best protect liberty.
Driving to Mass this morning I was listening to FOX on the issue of Afghanistan and the killing of U.S. and NATO soldiers by our supposed Afghan allies. FOX had its “terrorism expert” on and he was blathering about how President Obama’s apology for the recent Koran burning was causing more violence in Afghanistan and across the Muslim world. The apology, said the “expert”, was typical of Obama’s weakness, and this weakness is contributing to the rise of Islamist power in Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Afghanistan, and other places.
Somehow Obama’s apology for the Koran burning was explained by FOX’s “expert” as an apology for “U.S. policy,” which surprised me as I did not know our policy was to burn Korans.
Anyway, that this sort of truly brain-dead stuff passes for acceptable — or even plausible — analysis on any U.S. network falls into the appalling but not surprising category. The violence in Afghanistan against U.S. and NATO forces, for example, has nothing to do with the repeated apologies of Obama, Bush, Secretary Clinton, etc. for various incidents.
The violence comes from the fact that we and NATO are viewed by the overwhelming number of Afghans as, to quote an old but true phrase, “foreign infidel occupiers.”
Now, there is no doubt that burning Korans alienates Afghans, but it is the icing on the cake of 2,000-plus years of unrelenting, violent Afghan opposition to all occupiers — Greeks, Persians, Mongols, British, or Soviets. FOX’s “expert” said that Washington and NATO should be “partnering with pro-democracy Afghan social groups” to discredit the Taleban and other Afghan mujahedin and thereby reduce violence and spur democracy.
This analysis is truly a howler as those Afghans who are killing Western soldiers are the only social forces that count in Afghanistan, and they are the only ones that have counted since we invaded in 2001. Had we smashed these folks to the edge of extinction and then left in the 18 months following 9/11, all would have been well. But we stayed to build a secular democracy and empower women, and today the world’s greatest power and its allies are acknowledging defeat at the hands of shaggy lads armed with weapons of Korean War vintage.
Read the civilian death tolls and decide for yourself how you would feel if your family among the estimated 500-1000 civilians killed in anonymous drone-based airstrikes.
Also, please remember that unlike Afghanistan, Iraq or Iran, Pakistan has nuclear weapons.
The nuclear power chillingly declared it “has the means” to retaliate unless the carnage ceases.
Pakistan’s High Commissioner to Britain Wajid Shamsul Hasan told The Sun in an exclusive interview that his country’s relations with America are at their lowest ebb.
He said: “Patience is definitely reaching exhaustion levels.”
Mr. Hasan said Pakistan backs the War on Terror waged by Britain and the US. But he urged PM David Cameron to condemn US drone attacks on al-Qaeda and Taliban training camps in the north west of his country — dubbing them as “war crimes” and “little more than state executions”.
Tough-talking Mr Hasan also declared Pakistan would have no choice but to support Iran if “aggressive” Israel attacks it.
But his immediate concern is the drones known to have killed 535 civilians, including 60 children, in three years.
Pakistan claims the real death toll is more than 1,000. The unmanned aircraft blast missiles at targets, directed by a computer thousands of miles away. The High Commissioner said: “I think time is running out until the Pakistan government can take a stand.” They will have to at some stage take punitive actions to stop them. They have got means to take such actions to defend their own frontier and territories.
“But that will inflame the situation and stop the War on Terror and that is not what we want.”
The US military claim drones have “decimated” the al-Qaeda leadership since 2008 with no reported civilian casualties.
But Mr Hasan said: “We know the damage — destroyed schools, communities, hospitals. They are civilians — children, women, families. Our losses are enormous.
“Generally people think that deaths caused by drone attacks should be treated as war crimes. There is so much animosity that perhaps the Americans are the most hated people in the minds of the people in Pakistan.”
Mr Hasan urged Britain to tell the US its drone strikes are counter-productive.
On Iran, Mr Hasan said: “We would not like Israel to attack any country, irrespective of whether it’s Iran or any nuclear country. We wouldn’t like to be seen as part of Israel’s campaign against any country. If Israel attacks Iran, it will have an impact on Pakistan as well.
He warned that India and Gulf countries could also get involved in any conflict.
Historian Mark Almond said of Mr Hasan’s declarations: “This represents an escalation in tension.”
“Why conservatives must adopt Ron Paul’s foreign policy”
Many Republicans love Ron Paul’s limited-government philosophy but have problems with his foreign policy. This is understandable given the state of today’s Republican Party. But what many Republicans probably don’t realize is that Paul’s foreign policy is part of his limited-government philosophy — and it’s a crucially important part. If the American right does not begin to at least consider Paul’s foreign policy, it will continue to forfeit any hope of advancing a substantive conservatism.
As the Founders understood well, it is hard-to-impossible to preserve limited government at home while maintaining big government abroad. History and experience tell us that one always begets the other. This certainly rings true as we spend trillions of dollars on domestic programs that we match with trillions more overseas.
The Founders’ talk of “entangling alliances” requiring “standing armies” was recognition of the inherent dangers of war — and especially permanent war. “Mr. Republican” Sen. Robert Taft would echo similar sentiments a century and a half later in his battles against New Deal liberals. President Dwight Eisenhower’s warning about the “military-industrial complex” reflected the same concerns within a 20th-century, post-WWII context.
Almost alone, Ron Paul today carries on this important Republican tradition. Like every other conservative, Paul believes that America must have a strong national defense — he simply believes we can no longer afford our current irrational offense.
Unfortunately, unlimited Pentagon spending remains the big government too many Republicans still love. During the Reagan era, when we were fighting a global superpower that possessed thousands of nuclear weapons, this made sense. It does not make sense anymore. Today, we are fighting individuals, or collections of individuals, with infinitely less military capabilities and no particular attachments to nation-states.
Ask yourself this: What, exactly, does having thousands of troops stationed in Afghanistan do to prevent some sick individual from trying to blow up his underwear on an airplane? Just as important, ask this: Does having thousands of troops in places like Afghanistan make it less likely — or more likely — that some sick individual will try to blow up his underwear on an airplane? Our own military and CIA intelligence tells us that our overseas wars actually encourage terrorist attacks.
A majority of the members of the U.S. military agree, or as a Pew Research Poll of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans published in October revealed: “About half (51 percent) of post-9/11 veterans say that the use of military force to fight terrorism creates hatred that breeds more terrorism.”
These are basic questions that Americans desperately need to ask. Ron Paul is asking them. The other candidates don’t even consider them questions.
Which brings us to conservatism’s fate. Want to know why Paul is the only GOP presidential candidate who has proposed substantive spending cuts — $1 trillion in the first year? It’s because only Paul addresses Pentagon spending, the largest portion of our budget after entitlements. What the Republican candidates who eschew Paul’s foreign policy are essentially saying is this: We support limited government in theory but in practice it’s simply too dangerous.
Paul continues to make the same argument that former Chairman of the Joints Chief of Staff Mike Mullen has made: that our debt is the greatest threat to our national security. Newt Gingrich, Mitt Romney and the other GOP candidates do not see our debt as a similar threat — if they did, they would be calling for bigger spending cuts.
Iranian students are responding after the death of another nuclear scientist.
Report: 1000 Iranian students enroll in nuclear science
Mostafa Ahmadi Roshan, an official at the Natanz nuclear facility, was killed when a motorcycle-borne assailant attached a magnetic bomb to his car and rode way before the explosion. Iran continues to pursue what it calls a “right” to “peaceful nuclear energy,” even in the face of U.S. and other Western opposition.
“A number of students at the Sharif University of Technology have announced their readiness to work in the nuclear industry promising to rob the enemies of sleep, Mehrdad Bazrpash, an official at the university, said on Monday,” reported the Tehran Times.
Natanz was the site of the STUXNET cyber attack, which destroyed 1,000 uranium enrichment centrifuges. Iran has purported evidence of CIA involvement in the killing of Roshan. The accusations of American involvement in Roshan’s assasination come as U.S.–Iranian tensions over the Straits of Hormuz run high.
Recently, Tehran also announced the death sentence of former U.S. Marine Amir Hekmati. Tehrabn — an employee of Kuma Games, a New York-based video game development company — who was arrested and accused of spying.
“Minister of Science, Research, and Technology Kamran Daneshjo also told a press conference on Monday that “three hundred talented students at Sharif university and about a thousand brilliant students at the country’s universities have applied in recent days to change their major and start studying nuclear physics and nuclear engineering,” reported the Tehran Times.
Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2012/01/17/report-1000-iranian-college-students-change-majors-to-nuclear-physics/#ixzz1kCTx37fW