E. Raisi votes in Tehran
‘Hardliner Raisi wins Iran’s presidential election’, 19 Jun, 2021, RT.com
“Conservative judge Ebrahim Raisi has been declared the victor of Iran’s presidential election. Iran’s Interior Ministry announced the final results on Saturday, showing that Raisi had won in a landslide victory.
‘NATO summit threatens China, at US instigation’, Andre Damon, June 14, 2021 (w/ permission; my bolds)
(US tanks are unloaded in Antwerp, Belgium to take part in the Atlantic Resolve military exercises. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)
“Members of the 30-nation NATO alliance concluded their summit Monday with a communique targeting China, declaring that it poses “systemic challenges” to the military alliance.
The wording of the document marked a significant new stage in the efforts of the United States to, in the words of US President Biden, “organize the world to take on China,” as part of a massive escalation of tensions by Washington against Beijing.
‘Israel continues “full force” attacks on Gaza, backed by US and several Arab states’, Jean Shaoul, May 17, 2021 (w/ permission; my bolds)
A Palestinian man reacts over the body of his father as others carry him to the morgue after he was killed in an Israeli airstrike that destroyed the upper floors of a commercial building and caused damage to the nearby Health Ministry and prime health care clinic, in Gaza City, Monday, May 17, 2021. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
“Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu authorized Israel’s heaviest airstrikes on Gaza City yesterday, insisting that the war will go on “as long as necessary” and that attacks on Gaza would continue in “full force.” Israel “wants to levy a heavy price” from Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood group that rules Gaza, he added.
Explained: Why did Israeli forces storm Al-Aqsa Mosque? May 7, 2021
‘Over 215 Injuries Among Palestinian Worshipers At Al-Aqsa Mosque’, Quds News Network, May 10, 2021
Occupied Jerusalem (QNN)- The Red Crescent said that the number of injuries among Palestinian worshipers at Al-Aqsa Mosque has increased to reach more than 215, including 135 cases that were hospitalized and 4 in critical condition.
‘UK to send largest Carrier Strike Group since Falklands/Malvinas war to South China Sea’, Robert Stevens, 29 April 2021, wsws.org (w/ permission; my bolds):
British aircraft carriers HMS Prince of Wales and HMS Queen Elizabeth moored at Portsmouth harbour, November 2020
“The NATO-backed mission is being led by the UK’s new £3.2 billion aircraft carrier, HMS Queen Elizabeth, on its first operational deployment. The carrier, the navy’s largest and most powerful warship ever, was launched in October 2017 and has been involved in sea trials and operational training since. It is described by the Navy as being “able to strike from the sea at a time and place of our choosing…”
Other nations desiring global multilateralism seem to be wearying of endless pressures: crushing sanctions (or war by other means), bombastic military threats, lies presented as truths: China, Russia, Venezuela, Bolivia. But given the power of US client-state Zionist Israel, Iran deserves special attention right now.
From Iranian FM Javad Zarif on Twitter:
Nuclear terrorism at Natanz has unleashed dangerous spiral that can only be contained by ending US economic terrorism initiated by Trump
From the Guardian, April 11, 2021:
‘Israel appears to confirm it carried out cyberattack on Iran nuclear facility; Shutdown happened hours after Natanz reactor’s new centrifuges were started
Possibly Part one of II. For now, two from wsws (with permission):
‘US imperialism puts China in its sights’, Andre Damon, 16 March 2021, wsws.org
“Behind the backs of the American and world population, the Biden administration and the US military are preparing an escalation of military tensions against China with incalculable consequences.
‘No Room for Political Games at IAEA: Iranian President , March, 04, 2021, tasnim news english (CC)
“Iranian President Hassan Rouhani cautioned the European troika to avoid politicizing Iran’s case at the International Atomic Energy Agency as the UK, France and Germany are pushing for a resolution against Tehran in the UN nuclear agency’s Board of Governors.
“The (International Atomic Energy) Agency is not a venue for political games. Political games must be abandoned. The Agency is a place for technical work,” the Iranian president said on Thursday after inaugurating a number of projects carried out by the Interior Ministry.
‘Seven years after Maidan divided country, Ukraine intensifies shelling of Donbass to sound of deafening silence from Western media’, March 2, 2021, ingaza.wordpress.com
(No copyright, but f you appreciate her extraordinary work, and can afford to contribute, click in and see a Donate Button on the right sidebar.)
The Antiwar Movement Must Not Go Back To Sleep During The Biden Presidency
On Saturday, members of the administrative committee of the United National Antiwar Coalition (UNAC), on which I serve, spoke on a webinar about the importance of building and strengthening the antiwar, anti-imperialist movement during Biden’s presidency. UNAC was founded during the summer of 2010 as it became clear that the antiwar movement in the US was faltering under the nation’s first black president. Peace groups allied with the Democrats were reluctant to criticize the president and donations declined as people wrongly assumed the new Nobel Peace Prize winner was pro-peace.
‘STRATCOM chief claims nuclear war with Russia or China a ‘REAL POSSIBILITY,’ says US can’t assume ‘strategic deterrence will hold’’, 6 Feb, 2021
“The head of US Strategic Command is warning that nuclear war with Russia or China is “a real possibility,” pointing to “destabilizing” behaviors of America’s rivals. He also claims the Pentagon is not “stuck in the Cold War.”
“There is a real possibility that a regional crisis with Russia or China could escalate quickly to a conflict involving nuclear weapons, if they perceived a conventional loss would threaten the regime or state,” STRATCOM chief and Vice Admiral Charles Richard wrote in the February issue of the US Naval Institute’s monthly magazine.
…as his Tweets at the bottom will amply demonstrate; his pleasure is only too evident; i.e.: #MaximumPressureWorks. Stir in the Sunni Ruling class v. the Shi’a nations, and Israel as well. The epic hypocrisy is that the US exports Democracy!
created by anthony freda during the Obomba regime
‘US brands Yemen’s Houthi rebels “terrorists,” paving way for mass starvation’, Bill Van Auken, wsws.org. Jan. 11 2021 (w/ permission)
“Waving aside warnings by humanitarian organizations that his action threatens mass starvation in Yemen, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced Monday that Washington will designate the Houthi rebels, who govern territory containing 70 percent of the Yemeni population, as a “foreign terrorist organization.”
This cynical and potentially catastrophic measure is being taken by the ostensibly “lame-duck” secretary of state as part of an unrelenting “maximum pressure” campaign of punishing economic sanctions and continuous military provocations against Iran.
Washington has sought to portray the Houthi movement, which has existed and ruled over parts of Yemen for generations, as a puppet of Tehran, something the Houthis have continuously denied. Claims of substantial amounts of Iranian aid for the Houthis in the nearly five-year-old war launched against them by Saudi Arabia have never been proven.
Mick Wallace MEP Condemns EU Complicity in War Crimes (2:16)
I’d first been introduced to him at the Tehran Times while searching for updates just ahead of the first anniversary of the Jan. 3, 2020 US assassination of Iranian Quds Force Commander Qassem Soleimani.
‘We love human rights when we can Kick China, Iran’s, says MEP’, December 22, 2020, (w/ video 1:28)
I’ve borrowed bits from three pieces at RT.com, plus: the Grayzone, Newsweek, off-guardian.org, yahoo finance, rge Federal News Network, the Chicago Tribune, wsws.org, and the Twitterverse without attribution. Apologies if I double-up on items.
The pdf of the 5593 page full text of H.R. 13 is here
(click for larger)
Of the $6.1 billion appropriated for funding foreign militaries, a whopping $3.3 billion — more than half — “shall be available for grants only for Israel,” and must be “disbursed within 30 days of enactment of this Act.”
‘US green lights sale of 3,000 bombs worth $290 million to Saudi Arabia & flurry of other Middle East arms deals’, 29 Dec, 2020, RT.com (the accompanying photo: ‘Fire and smoke billow from an army weapons depot after it was hit by a Saudi air strike in Yemen’s capital, Sanaa’
“The US State Department has approved the possible sale of 3,000 precision-guided munitions to Saudi Arabia, alongside more than $4 billion in arms transfers to other regional states, arguing the deals support “national security.”
The munition sale to Saudi Arabia was authorized by the State Department on Tuesday, according to a Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) notice, giving the go-ahead for a transfer of 3,000 GBU-39 Small Diameter Bombs to the Gulf monarchy, worth some $290 million.
This is a bit of complicated tome, but for me key to understanding who is in charge of US foreign policy, and who (besides Zionist Israel) really rules the Western Empire.
It’s often said that dying Empires, rather than cede some power to other multiopolar nations/nation states, are at their most irrational, and engage in loose cannon command and control wherever they believe they can get away with it.
Additionally, will the New Boss (Biden’s still aiming at China and Russia) look much like the Old Boss come Inauguration Day? Biden’s choice for Secretary of State is Anthony ‘Nice Guy’ Blinken (h/t Alan Macleod) who never met an Imperial war he didn’t love, and apparently the sociopathic Michelle Flournoy for SecDef got a thumbs-down from too many ‘progressives, so he’s going with: ‘Secretary of Defense Lloyd ‘Serial War Profiteer’ (h/t Caitlin Johnstone) Austin’
(all art by Anthony Freda)
‘Killing for optics’? Obama claims he ‘took no joy’ in drone strikes, but ordered them to avoid looking ‘soft on terrorism’, RT.com, 19 Nov, 2020
“The ex-president’s new book ‘A Promised Land’ sheds some light on the Obama administration’s controversial expansion of the US drone program, which was launched under his predecessor George W. Bush.
One of Obama’s original campaign promises was for US withdrawal from middle-eastern conflicts. However, that promise was not fulfilled during his eight years in office, and the Democrat is now often accused of having further escalated violence in the region through his policies in Libya, Syria, and elsewhere.” […]
In Kenya during Al-Shabaab standoff
Another giant global humanist has left us this week, may he rest in power, and he and his works be remembered forever. Allow me to borrow excerpts from several homages by those who knew him and his work, and loved him well.
‘André Vltchek’s Sudden Death’, Robert Hunziker, Sept. 25, 2020, counterpunch.org
EDITOR’S NOTE: CounterPunch received word from Rossi Indira, Andre’s partner who was with him at the time of his death, that Andre died from complications with diabetes. Andre had been very ill for several weeks prior to his death, he could barely walk and one of his legs was paralyzed. Rossi tells us that he also refused medical treatment. Andre’s funeral is being held in Istanbul. For a full list of articles he wrote for CounterPunch, please visit his author page.
(joe and jill nite 4; they put on their masks when joined by kopmala)
Patrick Martin watched so we wouldn’t have to, and reported what he saw on August 21, 2020, bless his pea-pickin’ heart. (w/ the site’s permission) He likens it to a cliché-driven religious revival featuring ‘the Moral Superiority of Biden compared to Trump’, Biden’s ‘deep empathy for children and the downtrodden’ (add identity ___ at will). Hell, Bill Clinton was the master of fake empathy: biting one thumb with ‘sorrow’ in his eyes, and intoning: “I feel your pain.”
“The sheer contempt for the intelligence of the population and the viewing audience was summed up in Biden’s acceptance speech. His speechwriters appeared to have been trying to cram every possible trite phrase into a single 20-minute address.
Prop or Not? You decide. The story is everywhere, mainly reporting it like this:
‘DOJ confirms ‘largest-ever US seizure of Iranian fuel’ on 4 ships bound for Venezuela’, 14 Aug, 2020
“The US has seized some 1.116 mn barrels of Iranian fuel aboard 4 ships headed for Venezuela, the Justice Department has confirmed, hinting at “assistance” from “foreign partners” and declining to reveal where the grab took place.
The agency hailed what it called the largest-ever US seizure of Iranian fuel in a statement on Friday, revealing Washington had nabbed the sanctions-skirting cargo en route to Venezuela with the assistance of unspecified “foreign partners.”