A photo shows the alleged site of a US airstrike that killed Iranian general Qasem Soleimani near Baghdad International Airport in Iraq, January 03, 2020. Photo | Iraqi Security Forces handout

A Dubious Official Story Masks the True Motives Behind the Soleimani Assassination

Risking a regional war to allegedly avenge the death of an individual who was already avenged raises questions, especially for a President standing for re-election. The United States claims that the assassination was also intended to act as a “deterrent” against potential, future Iranian attacks, yet it is hard to justify the murder of a top general of a foreign power on foreign soil as a preemptive and preventative measure as opposed to one that would invite escalation. This is particularly true given that those that have most often sought an escalation in tensions between Iran and the U.S. and its Middle Eastern allies do not live in Tehran and Baghdad, but instead in Washington D.C. and Tel Aviv.
The current pressure facing both Trump and Netanyahu in their respective policies is only the latest factor that has pushed both administrations into a renewed and increasingly desperate push to satisfy the decades-old effort of Iran hawks in both countries to stoke war and “reshape” the Middle East in favor of the U.S.-Israel axis.

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Protesters throw eggs filled with paint on the image of U.S. President Donald Trump as they hold a rally opposing the recent U.S. attack that killed Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani in Manila, Philippines, Monday Jan. 6, 2020.

War With Iran

The targeting of Soleimani, who was killed by a MQ-9 Reaper drone that fired missiles into his convoy as he was leaving the Baghdad airport, also took the life of Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy commander of Iran-backed militias in Iraq known as the Popular Mobilization Forces, along with other Iraqi Shiite militia leaders. The strike may temporarily bolster the political fortunes of the two beleaguered architects of the assassination, Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, but it is an act of imperial suicide by the United States. War with Iran would trigger a long and widening regional conflict that, by the time it was done, would terminate the American Empire and leave in its wake mounds of corpses and smoldering ruins.

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Free Julian Assange

Wikileaks Founder Julian Assange ‘Slowly Dies’ in Prison

Smith also divulged that Assange told him he is kept in solitary confinement 23 hours per day and is often sedated.
His treatment has elicited protests around the world, from journalists, news organizations, human rights groups and celebrities. Last week a group of Australian doctors asked Foreign Minister Marise Payne to evacuate Assange to an Australian hospital, citing his inhumane treatment. In a statement they said:
“The potentially fatal medical consequences of prolonged psychological torture are inherently unpredictable, and could strike at any time. Accordingly, no doctor, no matter how senior, can offer any legitimate assurances regarding Julian Assange’s survival or medical stability while he continues to be held in Belmarsh Prison.”

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Boris Johnson

Someone Interfered in the UK Election & It Wasn’t Russia

As CNN reports, the Tories’ “Boris Johnson delivered a Margaret Thatcher-like win, crushing the opposition in the biggest general election victory for the Conservative Party since 1987.” Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn has been described as the most smeared politician in history, and this is a fair description. This smear campaign was driven by billionaire-controlled media outlets, along with intelligence and military agencies, as well as state media like the BBC.
Nobody will suffer any consequences for interfering in the U.K. election because the ones doing the interfering were extremely powerful, and that’s who the system is built to serve.

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The New York Times Supporting US-Backed Coups

The New York Times’ Long History of Endorsing US-Backed Coups

To be sure, the New York Times is not the only major media outlet guilty of reflexively supporting every U.S. action around the world. The Economist and the Washington Post both came out to support the coup in Bolivia, as they had done before with Venezuela. But the Times’ position as “the paper of record” sets it apart in terms of importance.
This position makes it a crucial weapon in the propaganda war waged on the American people in order to manufacture consent for regime change abroad.

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A broken portrait of former Bolivia's President Evo Morales is on the floor of his private home in Cochabamba, Bolivia, after hooded opponents broke into the residence on Sunday, Nov. 10, 2019. Morales resigned Sunday under mounting pressure from the military and the public after his re-election victory triggered weeks of fraud allegations and deadly protests. (AP Photo)

5 Fast Facts About the Military Coup in Bolivia and What You Can Do

At a United Nations Security Council meeting, Evo Morales explained:
“I would like to say to you, frankly and openly here, that in no way is the United States interested in upholding democracy. If such were the case it would not have financed coups d’etat and supported dictators. It would not have threatened with military intervention democratically elected governments as it has done with Venezuela. The United States could not care less about human rights or justice. If this were the case, it would have signed the international conventions and treaties that have protected human rights.It would not have threatened the investigation mechanism of the International Criminal Court, nor would it promote the use of torture, nor would it have walked away from the Human Rights Council. And nor would it have separated migrant children from their families, nor put them in cages.”
Morales went on to say, “Each time that the United States invades nations, launches missiles, or finances regime change, it does so behind a propaganda campaign which incessantly repeats the message that it is acting in the course of justice, freedom and democracy, in the cause of human rights or for humanitarian reasons.”

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Second Whistleblower Emerges from Investigation into Douma Chemical Attack

OPCW Losing Credibility As Even More Revelations Surface On Douma. Caitlin Johnstone flags a report about another member of the OPCW investigation who says his findings, which contradicted the official conclusions, were suppressed.
With the US-centralized empire’s increasingly evident influence over the OPCW, we’re seeing evidence of a campaign to distort the public understanding of what’s going on in a foreign nation the likes of which we’ve never before seen.
Stay skeptical and remember Iraq. These new reports which keep surfacing on unacceptable practices by the OPCW are just one more piece on a mountain of evidence that whenever the political/media class and their hypnotized victims try to bully us into accepting the official narrative about a longtime target for regime change, we should stand firm and insist on an amount of proof which rises to the level required in a post-Iraq invasion world.

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U.S. bomber prepares to launch a strike mission from Al Udeid AIr Base, Qatar, April 13, 2018, in support of the multinational response to reports of Syria recent use of chemical weapons. (U.S. Air Force/Phil Speck)

Panel Finds Gaping Holes in OPCW Report on Alleged Syrian Chemical Attack

A whistleblowers’ advocacy group finds “unacceptable practices” by an investigation of the 2018 chemical attack in Douma, writes Caitlin Johnstone.
The Courage Foundation, an international protection and advocacy group for whistleblowers, has published the findings of a panel it convened last week on the extremely suspicious behavior of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) in its investigation of an alleged chemical attack in Douma, Syria last year. After hearing an extensive presentation from a member of the OPCW’s Douma investigation team, the panel’s members (including a world-renowned former OPCW Director General) report that they are “unanimous in expressing our alarm over unacceptable practices in the investigation of the alleged chemical attack in Douma, near the Syrian capital of Damascus on 7 April 2018.”
Establishment narrative managers had a very difficult time spinning the fact that the OPCW had taken it upon itself to hide findings from the public which dissented from its official report on an incident which preceded an international act of war upon a sovereign nation, and all the implications that necessarily has for the legitimacy of the organization’s other work.

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Max Blumenthal

“This Charge is 100% False”: Grayzone editor Max Blumenthal arrested months after reporting on Venezuelan opposition violence

The Grayzone editor Max Blumenthal has been arrested on false charges after reporting on Venezuelan opposition violence outside the DC embassy. He describes the manufactured case as part of a wider campaign of political persecution.
If this had happened to a journalist in Venezuela, every Western human rights NGO and news wire would be howling about Maduro’s authoritarianism. It will be revealing to see how these same elements react to a clear-cut case of political repression in their own backyard.

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The Revolution Isn’t Being Televised

Over 30 years ago, in their book Manufacturing Consent, Edward Herman and Noam Chomsky developed their theory of worthy vs. unworthy victims to explain why corporate media cover certain stories and why others are dropped. In other words, when official enemies can be presented as evil and allies as sympathetic victims, corporate media will be very interested in a story. In contrast, they will show far less enthusiasm for a story when the “wrong” people are the villains or the victims.

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JOHN PILGER: Did This Happen in the Home of the Magna Carta?

JOHN PILGER: Did This Happen in the Home of the Magna Carta?

John Pilger: The worst moment was one of a number of ‘worst’ moments. I have sat in many courtrooms and seen judges abuse their positions, This judge, Vanessa Baraitser—actually she isn’t a judge at all; she’s a magistrate—shocked all of us who were there. Her face was a progression of sneers and imperious indifference; she addressed Julian with an arrogance that reminded me of a magistrate presiding over apartheid South Africa’s Race Classification Board. When Julian struggled to speak, he couldn’t get words out, even stumbling over his name and date of birth. Having ignored Julian’s barrister’s factual description of how the CIA had run a Spanish security firm that spied on him in the Ecuadorean embassy, she didn’t yawn, but her disinterest was as expressive. She then denied Julian’s lawyers any more time to prepare their case – even though their client was prevented in prison from receiving legal documents and other tools with which to defend himself.

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Julian Assange Illegal Imprisonment and Torture by the US and UK

Julian Assange Displayed Signs of Torture in Courtroom Farce

What we witnessed yesterday was a naked demonstration of the power of the state, and a naked dictation of proceedings by the Americans, writes Craig Murray.
Having attended the trials in Uzbekistan of several victims of extreme torture, and having worked with survivors from Sierra Leone and elsewhere, I can tell you that yesterday changed my mind entirely and Julian exhibited exactly the symptoms of a torture victim brought blinking into the light, particularly in terms of disorientation, confusion, and the real struggle to assert free will through the fog of learned helplessness.

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The World Turned Upside Down

The World Turned Upside Down

Yet when the Houthi rebel movement that controls much of Yemen wiped out three Saudi Brigades and inflicted at least 2,500 casualties at the end of September, the Western media ignored it. The humiliating defeat that the Houthis have just inflicted on the Saudis is of comparable epochal significance. The Houthi victory serves notice that the Saudis have met their nemesis. The Houthis are now poised to bring the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia itself crashing down. Payback is coming. And it will not stop at the borders of Saudi Arabia and Yemen.

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Iran Claims To Have Video Evidence Of Oil Tanker Attacks

Iran Claims To Have Video Evidence Of Oil Tanker Attacks

Iran has claimed that it has footage of last week’s attack on its oil tanker while off the Saudi Arabian Jeddah port, and it proves that the attacks were carried out by Israel, Saudi Arabia, and the United States, according to Mehr news agency, who quoted Abolfazl Hassan Beigi, Iran’s National Security and Foreign Policy Commission member. This evidence, Hassan Beigi said, will be provided to the UN and Security Council.

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