Obama grants waiver for military support of foreign fighters in Syria – White House

From RT

December 8, 2016

President Barack Obama has ordered a waiver of restrictions on military aid for foreign forces and others in Syria, deeming it “essential to the national security interests” of the US to allow exceptions from provisions in the four-decades-old Arms Export Control Act.

A White House press release Thursday announced that foreign fighters in Syria supporting US special operations “to combat terrorism in Syria”would be excused from restrictions on military assistance.

“I hereby determine that the transaction, encompassing the provision of defense articles and services to foreign forces, irregular forces, groups, or individuals engaged in supporting or facilitating ongoing U.S. military operations to counter terrorism in Syria, is essential to the national security interests of the United States,” President Obama affirmed in the presidential determination and waiver.

The order delegates responsibility to the US secretary of state to work with and report to Congress on weapons export proposals, requiring 15 days of notice before they are authorized.

Obama announced a similar waiver of the Arms Export Control Act in September 2013, following the Ghouta chemical attack in August of that year. That order facilitated the transfer of US military weaponry to “select vetted members” of opposition forces battling Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, while Thursday’s order appears less narrow in scope.

READ MORE: RT crew first to reach liberated area of Aleppo’s Old City (EXCLUSIVE VIDEO) 

Last year, Obama signed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) of 2016, which allocated nearly $500 million to arm and train “moderate rebels” in Syria, despite a failed Pentagon program abandoned earlier in 2015.

The challenge of differentiating between terrorist forces, such as Al-Nusra, and more moderate forces in Syria has been acknowledged by press secretaries in recent State Department briefings.

The “counterterrorism” pretext is just a “convenient misappropriation of language,” aimed at arming various militants to battle the Syrian Army and its allies, believes geopolitical analyst Patrick Henningsen.

“Putting this under the banner of fighting terrorism … follows on [from] a sort of fantasy concept that’s been pushed out as a talking point for the last year and a half, that if we train and equip the ‘moderate opposition’ they will fight [Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL)],” Henningsen told RT.

“They want to open the floodgates basically for trafficking weapons to religious extremists and militants and terrorist groups, internationally recognized terrorist groups … it’s all being done still under this kind of false pretense of the fight against ISIS, that somehow ‘moderate’ rebels, if they even exist, will turn their weapons and fight against ISIS. And we know from the facts on the ground, from the beginning, that [this] simply has not been the case. This is to arm the opposition to fight the Syrian government and to fight Russian forces. This is a desperate move on the part of the lame duck president.”

President Obama’s decision could lead to an almost immediate escalation of the conflict and basically put the US in a situation of “waging a proxy war against the Russians and Syrians,” a former Pentagon official, Michael Maloof, told RT.

“The rebels, whom we cannot identify, are going to be getting some very sophisticated weapons. Potentially, I should say, man-portable air defense systems, which can knock down Russian and Syrian aircraft,” Maloof said. “And the fact too, that we have stocks already in Europe, that can easily be transferred with this waiver. Under the waiver, it’s supposed to be a 15-day notification to Congress, but Congress, as of tonight, Washington time, is going to be out of session until January. So these arms can go within hours.”

 

https://www.rt.com/usa/369702-obama-waiver-military-aid-syria-forces/

Questions to ask President Obama regarding Bashar Al Assad and the Islamic State (ISIS) at a press conference

Below is an excerpt.
Global Research, December 07, 2015
William Blum 6 December 2015
Obama-AP
GR Editor’ Note: These are relevant questions formulated by author William Blum, to be addressed to president Obama at a hypothetical press conference...
Which is most important to you – destroying ISIS, overthrowing Syrian president Assad, or scoring points against Russia?

Do you think that if you pointed out to the American people that Assad has done much more to aid and rescue Christians in the Middle East conflicts than any other area leader that this would lessen the hostility the United States public and media feel toward him? Or do you share the view of the State Department spokesperson who declared in September that “The Assad regime frankly is the root of all evil”?

Why does the United States maintain crippling financial sanctions and a ban on military aid to Syria, Cuba, Iran and other countries but not to Saudi Arabia?

What does Saudi Arabia have to do to lose its strong American support? Increase its torture, beheadings, amputations, whippings, stonings, punishment for blasphemy and apostasy, or forced marriages and other oppression of women and girls? Increase its financial support for ISIS and other jihadist groups? Confess to its role in 9-11? Attack Israel?

What bothers you more: The Saudi bombing of the people of Yemen or the Syrian bombing of the people of Syria?

Does the fact that ISIS never attacks Israel raise any question in your mind?

Does it concern you that Turkey appears to be more intent upon attacking the Kurds and the Russians than attacking ISIS? And provides medical care to wounded ISIS soldiers? Or that ISIS deals its oil on Turkish territory? Or that NATO-member Turkey has been a safe haven for terrorists from Libya, Chechnya, Qatar, and elsewhere? Or that last year Vice President Biden stated that Turkish president Erdogan’s regime was backing ISIS with “hundreds of millions of dollars and thousands of tons of weapons”?

If NATO had never existed, what argument could you give today in favor of creating such an institution? Other than – as some would say – being a very useful handmaiden of US foreign policy and providing American arms manufacturers with trillions of dollars of guaranteed sales.

Does the United States plan on releasing any of its alleged evidence to back up its repeated claims of Syrian bombing and chemical warfare against the Syrian people? Like clear photos or videos from the omnipresent American satellite cameras? Or any other credible evidence?

Does the United States plan on releasing any of its alleged evidence to back up its repeated claims of Russian invasions of Ukraine in the past year? Like clear photos or videos from the omnipresent American satellite cameras? Or any other credible evidence?

Do the numerous connections between the Ukrainian government and neo-Nazis have any effect upon America’s support of Ukraine?

What do you imagine would have been the outcome in World War Two if the United States had opposed Soviet entry into the war because “Stalin must go”?

Would you prefer that Russia played no military role at all in Syria?

Can the administration present in person a few of the Syrian opposition “moderates” we’ve heard so much about and allow the media to interview them?

Have you considered honoring your promise of  “No boots on the ground in Syria” by requiring all American troops to wear sneakers?

Excerpts from a State Department daily press briefing, November 24, 2015, following the Turkish shoot-down of a Russian plane, conducted by Mark Toner, Deputy Spokesperson:

QUESTION: President Obama said he will reach out to President Erdogan over the next few days.

MR TONER: Yeah.

QUESTION: Did not mention Putin. That really puts you squarely on Turkey’s side, doesn’t it?

……………………

QUESTION: You’re saying Turkey has the right to defend itself; President Obama said the same thing. What defense are you talking about? Does anyone think Russia was going to attack Turkey?

MR TONER: Again, I mean, this is –

QUESTION: Do you think so?

MR TONER: Look, I don’t want to parse out this incident. I said very clearly that we don’t know all the facts yet, so for me to speak categorically about what happened is – frankly, would be irresponsible.

……………………

QUESTION: Even if you accept the Turkish version that the plane traveled 1.3 miles inside Turkey and violated its airspace for 17 seconds – that’s according to Turkey – do you think shooting down the plane was the right thing to do?

MR TONER: Again, I’m not going to give you our assessment at this point. We’re still gathering the facts.

……………………

QUESTION: In 2012, Syria shot down a Turkish plane that reportedly strayed into its territory. Prime Minister Erdogan then said, “A short-term border violation can never be a pretext for an attack.” Meanwhile, NATO has expressed its condemnation of Syria’s attack as well as strong support for Turkey. Do you see the inconsistency of NATO’s response on this?

MR TONER: As to what President Erdogan may have said after that incident, I would refer you to him.

……………………

QUESTION: Turkoman forces in Syria said they killed the two Russian pilots as they descended in parachutes.

MR TONER: Yeah.

QUESTION: Turkoman forces are supported by Turkey and are fighting against the Syrian Government, they are part of the rebel force there. Do you consider these rebels to be a moderate force in Syria?

……………………

QUESTION: I’m trying – I mean, do you think that everybody has the right to defend themselves?

MR TONER: We’ve said very clearly that people have the right to defend themselves.

QUESTION: Right? Including the Assad regime?

MR TONER: No.

http://www.globalresearch.ca/questions-to-ask-president-obama-regarding-bashar-al-assad-and-the-islamic-state-isis-at-a-press-conference/5494087

Pentagon ready to move 24 NATO Interceptor missiles to Romania

Posted on Stop NATO, May 13, 2015

U.S. Army Europe
May 12, 2015
Aegis Ashore team finds timely solution to portable power need
By Lt. Cmdr. Mike Billips, NSF Deveselu Public Affairs

rtn_rms_sm3_pic041
Standard Missile-3 of the sort to be installed in Romania

NAVAL SUPPORT FACILITY DEVESELU, Romania: A U.S. Navy base, under construction in Romania, is using U.S. Soldiers to ensure that the second phase of the European Phased Adaptive Approach, or EPAA, to ballistic missile defense of U.S. and allied interests becomes operational on time.

President Barack Obama has mandated that the Aegis Ashore capability, in the NATO partner nation of Romania, be operational by the end of 2015.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, or USACE, 249th Engineer Battalion, deployed a team and equipment to Romania on less than a week’s notice in early April. They provided an instant solution to a knotty schedule problem at Naval Support Facility, or NSF, Deveselu, the first Aegis Ashore base under construction in central Romania.

The 249th’s four generators, together with their switching gear, make up a 3.2-megawatt power plant solution to support continued progress on EPAA phase II. This “Prime Power” equipment can be deployed anywhere in the world that diesel fuel can be supplied. That was crucial for NSF Deveselu, where the U.S. Missile Defense Agency, or MDA, is building the first operational Aegis Ashore Ballistic Missile Defense system.

“They were able to provide the right power for the testing of the Aegis Weapons System,” said Capt. William Garren, commanding officer of NSF Deveselu. “If they hadn’t come, it would have cost 44 days, from the schedule, to get the system checked out and operational.”

A necessary design change meant a potential six-week delay in testing and bringing the system online, as generators were taken offline and moved to their permanent locations. Fortunately, the USACE Europe District, which oversees all military construction in the region, happened to be more than familiar with U.S. military’s portable power capabilities.

Col. Matthew Tyler, who is also the district engineer, is a former commander of the 249th, and a former commandant of the Prime Power School, which also trains Navy Mobile Utilities Support Equipment Seabees.

“While MUSE was considered first for the mission, their new equipment was not certified for air transport, which meant the Army could respond more quickly,” he said.

“It’s a strategically important project, and it warrants a greater amount of attention to ensure we can meet the presidential mandate,” Tyler said.

The successful deployment and installation of the generators took less than three weeks, from first notification of the unit, that they would deploy. The Soldiers will remain in Romania to operate the equipment until permanently installed replacements are fully operational this fall.

The solution was the result of a much longer planning and coordination process involving the Navy base and tenant command, USACE, the Missile Defense Agency, or MDA, and multiple contractors.

https://rickrozoff.wordpress.com/2015/05/13/pentagon-ready-to-move-24-nato-interceptor-missiles-to-romania/

 

The U.S. versus Russia: even scholar Stephen Cohen is starting to speak the truth

By Eric Zuesse
Posted on Global Research, March 26, 2015

An alarming development is that Stephen F. Cohen, the internationally prominent scholar of Russia, is acknowledging that (1:35 on the video) “for the first time in my long life (I began in this field in the 1960s), I think the possibility of war with Russia is real,” and he clearly and unequivocally places all of the blame for it on the U.S. leadership. He calls this “possibly a fateful turning-point in history.” He also says “it could be the beginning of the end of the so-called trans-Atlantic alliance.”

He goes on to say (2:20):

“This problem began in the 1990s, when the Clinton Administration adopted a winner-take-all policy toward post-Soviet Russia … Russia gives, we take. … This policy was adopted by the Clinton Administration but is pursued by every [meaning both] political party, every President, every American Congress, since President Clinton, to President Obama. This meant that the United States was entitled to a sphere or zone of influence as large as it wished, right up to Russia’s borders, and Russia was entitled to no sphere of influence, at all, not even in Georgia, … or in Ukraine (with which Russia had been intermarried for centuries).”

He also speaks clearly about the misrepresentations of Putin by the American Government, and he clearly states (5:25):

“He’s more European than 99% of other Russians.”

Regarding Ukraine (5:45):

“Since November of 2013, Putin has been not aggressive, but reactive, at every stage.”

Regarding, in America, the effective unanimity of allowed scholarly and media opinions to the contrary of the actual facts (and this is the most startling thing of all, so you might want to go straight to it, at 7:05):

“This is an unprecedented situation in American politics. … This is exceedingly dangerous, and this is a failure of American democracy. Why it happened, I am not sure.”

He condemns (7:30)

“this extraordinarily irrational [non] factual demonization of Putin … and this too is hard to explain.”

Europe (8:40):

“Now things have begun to change. Europe is splitting on this.” He acknowledges “Crimea is not coming back [to Ukraine],” and urges “a Ukraine — and this is what the dispute began over — free to trade with Russia and with the West.”

And,

“no membership in NATO for Ukraine. … This has to be in writing. No more oral promises such as they gave to Gorbachev. And it has to be ratified by the United Nations.”

Regarding Obama (13:00):

“I have never seen an American President make such personal remarks about a Russian leader [Putin] in public.”

Regarding the existing Ukrainian Government (14:10):

“This is not a democratic regime. … Unless the West stops supporting Kiev unconditionally, I fear we are drifting toward war with Russia.”

WOW! When even a word-mincer such as he, is stating that the U.S. Government is seeking to conquer Russia, that is news!

He doesn’t even so much as mention the Ukrainian Government’s war to eliminate the residents in the resisting region (Donbass — Ukraine’s far-east). There is still a lot of the ugliness that he covers up: Obama’s having installed these genocidally anti-Russian nazis into power, the IMFs subservience to the Obama regime, the failure of European leaders to state flat-out that this American establishment of a nazi regime in Europe (Ukraine) is disgusting and will receive no cooperation whatsoever from them.

But it’s a lot better than Cohen’s earlier mealy-mouthed statements. And what it shows to all of us is that he is now truly alarmed. Having started out by condemning “American hawks” regarding Ukraine, he has finally come to condemning specifically both Bill Clinton and Barack Obama — two Democratic Party Presidents — and saying that democracy in America might itself already be gone, and that the end of civilization might be the result from all of this.

Which ought to alarm us all.

Things are so scary now, that even he is beginning to come close to saying publicly (to whatever small public the U.S. aristocracy will allow him to be heard) that America’s corruption at the top is threatening the continued existence of civilization.

Implicit in his statements is that there is massive and systematic censorship and warping of the truth on the part of America’s aristocrats.

Regarding the reason why Cohen had not previously been so alarmed and truth-telling about the Ukrainian situation, he provided a hint in this lecture — a lecture to a group of European scholars:

He said (7:55):

We thought, some of us [Americans] when we got together and talked in 2014, that you would come to our rescue — ‘you’ I mean Europe — … we thought that Europe being part of the same history as Russia, closer to Russia, economically embedded in Russia to an extent that the United States isn’t, would put an end to this crisis. But instead most countries in the EU went along with Washington’s policies.”

In other words: He (and, evidently, his friends) ignored the evidence, such as this and this and this, all of which atrocities Obama supported and his White House was even personally implicated in, which indicated that Obama was hard-charging into conquering Russia, and was using Ukraine as the proxy-state to make it happen, and had used Ukraine’s nazis as his Ukrainian Government’s spearhead, specifically because Ukraine’s nazis fanatically hate Russians and want them dead.

Elsewhere in his talk, Cohen said (12:45) that Obama is “a weak foreign-policy leader.” This is like Hitler-supporter David Irving’s similarly explaining Hitler’s bad decisions by saying that Hitler was a “weak leader who was taken advantage of by his advisors.” Cohen (and presumably also his friends) are like that about Obama: they simply refuse to consider the evidence that the man is evil — they ignore it; they don’t want to see it.

Consequently, with such naïveté about power, they were expecting people such as this to block Obama. They shoved responsibility off onto Europeans. In other words: Cohen (and his friends) are blind to the ugliness in their own sty, because they want to be.

Maybe before people like that open their eyes to what’s happening, everybody will be turned to nuclear char, and so such liberals won’t even need to suffer disillusionment about the world in which they have lived.

Relying upon liberals to protect the world from fascists or even nazis, always fails. But that’s all the aristocracy will even allow onto the field, at all (at least in America). Progressives, people who acknowledge the reality, are portrayed simply as being kooks.

Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of  They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity, and of Feudalism, Fascism, Libertarianism and Economics.

 

http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-u-s-versus-russia-even-scholar-stephen-cohen-is-starting-to-speak-the-truth/5438984

Victoria Nuland lied to US Congress this week — phantom Russian hoards in Ukraine

This hearing is available on C-Span for those who can stomach it: http://www.c-span.org/video/?324656-1/victoria-nuland-testimony-us-policy-toward-ukraine-Russia

This hearing dramatically shows the state of United States leaders — their willful ignorance, their staunch prejudices, their pompous outrage, their narrow education, and their appetite for war against Russia. The hearing played like theatre — completely orchestrated.

By Stephen Lendman, March 7, 2015
Posted on Global Research

On March 4, Nuland addressed House Foreign Affairs Committee members.

She called murdered US-funded, Boris Nemtsov a “freedom fighter, Russian patriot and friend.”

She absurdly called Ukraine “central to our 25 year Transatlantic quest for a ‘Europe whole, free and at peace.’ ”

Fact: Washington wants Ukraine used as a dagger against Russia’s heartland – with menacing US bases on its borders threatening is sovereign independence.

Nuland called US planned and implements year ago Maidan violence using well-trained Nazi thugs “peaceful protest(s) by ordinary Ukrainians.”

“They braved frigid temperatures, brutal beatings and sniper bullets…Ukraine began to forge a new nation…holding free and fair election…and undertaking deep and comprehensive economic and political reforms.”

Fact: US-deposed President Viktor Yanukovych’s police showed remarkable restraint.

Fact: Washington-supported Nazi thugs bore full responsibility for beatings, sniper killings and other violence.

Fact: Ukrainian parliamentary and presidential elections were farcical – with no legitimacy whatever.

Fact: So-called economic reforms involve crushing hardships on already impoverished Ukrainians in return for loan-shark-of-last-resort IMF blood money.

Fact: No responsible political reforms exist. None are planned. It bears repeating. Ukraine is a US-installed fascist dictatorship.

Nuland lied claiming

“enhance(d) (Ukrainian) transparency in public procurement, reduce(d) government inefficiency and corruption, (laws) making the banking system more transparent, and measures to improve the climate for business and…foreign investment.”

Ukrainian banking is a black hole of grand theft. State farmland and enterprises are being sold to Western predators at fire sale prices.

Corruption is worse than ever. Government and military officials are stealing everything they can get their dirty hands on – at the expense of imposing crushing austerity on deeply impoverished millions.

Hyperinflation grips the country. The “breadbasket” of Europe can’t feed its people. Rationing was imposed.

Energy prices skyrocketed to unaffordable levels. Ukraine symbolizes humanitarian disastrous conditions wherever America shows up.

Nuland recited a litany of Big Lies about the “new Ukraine,” – a Nazified menace to its people

Claiming it’s “building a peaceful, democratic, independent” nation is polar opposite truth.

She aimed the worst of her rant at Russia and Donbass freedom fighters.

She lied about Crimea “under illegal occupation” – ignoring near Crimean unanimity to reverse a historic mistake and rejoin Russia.

She turned truth on its head claiming

“(i)n eastern Ukraine, Russia and its separatist puppets unleashed unspeakable violence and pillage.”

“MH17 was shot down. Hundreds of Russian heavy weapons and troops poured across the border, fueling the conflict.”

“Sixteen Russian uninspected ‘humanitarian convoys’ entered Ukraine in violation of agreements with the Ukrainian government, the ICRC and the international community.”

“Donetsk airport was obliterated…Debaltseve, a key rail hub beyond the ceasefire lines, fell to separatist and Russian forces six days after Minsk was signed…”

“This is a manufactured conflict controlled by the Kremlin, fueled by Russian tanks and heavy weapons; financed at Russian taxpayers’ expense and costing the lives of young Russians…”

Fact: Kiev collaboratively with Washington launched naked aggression against Donbass residents wanting democratic rights everyone deserves – wanting to live free from the scourge of fascism.

Fact: No Russian hoards “poured across (Ukraine’s) border.” Kiev’s own military chief said so.

No evidence whatever shows Russian involvement. None exists except photos exposed as fakes.

Fact: Washington and Kiev bear full responsibility for unleashing unspeakable violence against Donbass residents.

Fact: One or more Ukrainian warplanes downed MH17- a US/Kiev false flag. Russia and rebels had nothing to do with it.

Fact: Russia is the only nation delivering vitally needed humanitarian aid – inspected by ICRC representatives.

Fact: Minsk ceasefire terms included nothing about Debastseve.

Fact: Washington and Kiev “manufactured” Donbass’ conflict – not Moscow or rebels.

Not a single House Foreign Affairs Committee member challenged Nuland’s obvious and outrageous Big Lies.

They accepted them as gospel. They let an unindicted war criminal insult them.

Russia and rebels are consistently and wrongfully blamed for US/Kiev crimes.

Obama wants war, not peace. He wants unchallenged control over America’s newest colony. He wants it pillaged for profit.

He wants it as a stepping-stone toward long sought regime change in Russia – replacing its sovereign independence with pro-Western puppet governance.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net . His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.” http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network. It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs.

 

http://www.globalresearch.ca/victoria-nuland-lied-to-us-congress-about-phantom-russian-hoards-in-ukraine/5435233

 

Clinton Foundation rakes in cash from right-wing regimes, super-rich, corporations

From World Socialist Web Site, February 28, 2015
By Tom Hall

Several press reports last week highlight details of the major donors to the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation, including right-wing Persian Gulf monarchies, big defense contractors, and an array of corporations and governments seeking influence with the US political establishment—and potentially in the next White House.

Founded in 2001 after the end of Bill Clinton’s second term as president, the Foundation has raised and distributed huge amounts of money, reaching nearly $2 billion. After a brief drop in fundraising coinciding with Hillary Clinton’s term as secretary of state from 2009 to 2013, when most foreign donations were discouraged because of conflict-of-interest concerns, donations jumped $100 million in 2013, reaching $262 million.

The list of the Foundation’s largest donors, available on the Foundation’s website, is a virtual who’s who of the super-rich and major corporations. The largest donors, having given over $25 million since 2001, include the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, well known for its leading role in the dismantling of public education, Chicago multimillionaire and top Democratic Party donor Fred Eychaner, and, strangely, the Dutch national lottery.

Major corporations appear in spades in the list of 168 individuals and organizations that have given more than $1 million. Defense contractors such as Boeing and Booz Allen Hamilton, both gave between $1 and $5 million, joined by Barclays, Goldman Sachs, and the American Federation of Teachers.

The reactionary Persian Gulf monarchies have poured tens of millions into the Clinton Foundation, including Saudi Arabia ($10 to $25 million), Kuwait, ($5 to $10 million), Qatar, Oman and the United Arab Emirates ($1 to $5 million). In addition, several groups and individuals close to the Saudi government have also made tens of millions in contributions.

The Clinton Foundation made an agreement with the Obama administration not to accept new donations from foreign sources during Hillary Clinton’s tenure as secretary of state, a policy which has now expired. However, tens of millions of overseas dollars continued to flow into the Foundation through an exemption which allowed existing donors to continue making contributions at a similar level.

Claims by Clinton Foundation donors that they were genuinely interested in charity are belied by the circumstances of many of the donations. For example, the Wall Street Journal cited an incident in 2009 in which Hillary Clinton convinced Russia to purchase 50 Boeing 737s; seven months later, Boeing made its first-ever donation to the Clinton Foundation, $900,000 to help “rebuild” Haiti’s school system. Perhaps admitting more than she intended, a Boeing spokeswoman said in a written statement, “Secretary Clinton did nothing for Boeing that former US presidents and cabinet secretaries haven’t done for decades.

In another case, the Foundation received a $500,000 donation from the government of Algeria for its pro-market “relief” effort in Haiti. The Washington Post notes that the donation, which violated the Foundation’s earlier agreement with the Obama administration, came in the midst of a particularly heavy lobbying push from Algeria in Washington in the aftermath of a report by Clinton’s State Department condemning Algeria’s human rights record. The donation was more than the Algerian government spent on lobbying for the entire year.

Two years later, Secretary of State Clinton lobbied successfully on behalf of GE in its bids to construct power plants in Algeria, described by the company as “some of its largest power agreements in company history.” A month later, GE donated from $500,000 to $1 million to the Clinton Foundation.

The focus in the media, especially from Journal and other ultra-right outlets, has been on the fact that foreign countries, companies and individuals comprise a third of the foundation’s major donors, implying that they are purchasing political influence through the Clintons. While there is a degree of truth to this, this is also a two-way street, as the Clinton Foundation is fully integrated into the political apparatus as an instrument of American imperialist foreign policy.

Instructive in this regard is their role in the “rebuilding” of Haiti after the 2010 earthquake, in which some 300,000 died. The Clinton Foundation played a major role, with Bill Clinton himself co-chairing the panel that distributed all international aid to Haiti. The entire aid effort was used to ram through pro-market restructuring, while American and then UN “peacekeepers” patrolled the country to prevent any opposition from the population. The Obama administration made no objection to the Algerian donation to the Clinton Foundation for the simple reason that it was entirely in line with American foreign policy in Haiti.

The Clinton Foundation’s version of “charity” also involves imperialist intrigue. This included secret maneuvers last year against Sri Lankan president Mahinda Rajapakse, which ultimately led to his electoral defeat last month. The country’s former president Chandrika Kumaratunga, who joined the Clinton Foundation in 2005, played the major role in backroom deals that led to Maithripala Sirisena’s sudden departure from the government and announcement that he would be the “common opposition candidate.” Earlier this month Kumaratunga admitted that unnamed “foreign governments” had urged her to maneuver against Rajapakse.

During her time as secretary of state, Hillary Clinton took the lead in denouncing the Sri Lankan government’s “human rights record” in order to pressure it to move away from its ties with China as part of the Obama administration’s “Pivot to Asia.” She presented resolutions in 2011 and 2012 in her capacity as secretary of state demanding that the UN take action against Sri Lanka for human rights violations during the civil war against Tamil separatist guerrillas.

http://www.globalresearch.ca/clinton-foundation-raked-in-cash-from-right-wing-regimes-corporations/5434117

Venezuela foils Washington’s coup plot

Another coup plot by the United States government, with a sitting president and vice president leading it.

Posted on Global Research, February 14, 2015
By Stephen Lendman

On February 12, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro announced Obama’s plot to kill him, oust his government, and seize power forcefully was thwarted. More on this below.

Throughout his tenure, Obama waged war on humanity. It continues against free people everywhere.

His deplorable record might make some despots blush. He viciously targets fundamental freedoms at home and abroad.

Governs under a police state apparatus. Unilaterally decides who lives, dies, stays free or is imprisoned.

He continues waging war on Afghanistan after pledging to end it during his first year in office.

No end of conflict looms. Permanent war and occupation is planned. Afghanistan is a wasteland of dystopian misery.

Obama ravaged and destroyed Libya. Turning North Africa’s most developed country into an out-of-control cauldron of violence. Its people stripped of all social benefits and rights Gaddafi provided.

In June 2009, he orchestrated Honduran President Manuel Zelaya’s ouster. A US supported fascist despot replaced him.

After Haiti’s devastating January 2010 earthquake, Obama militarized the country, plunders it freely, exploits its people ruthlessly, orchestrated rigged elections, and prohibits democratic governance.

In September 2010, his attempt to topple Ecuador’s Rafael Correa failed. In 2012, he orchestrated Paraguayan President Fernando Lugo’s ouster by rigged parliamentary impeachment.

In February 2011, he manipulated Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak’s removal. So-called Arab spring was more mirage than real.

In July 2013, Mohamed Morsi’s toppling followed. Obama’s dirty hands conspired with Egypt’s General Abdul Fatah al-Sisi to install junta rule.

In February 2014, He ousted Ukraine’s democratically elected government. Put neo-Nazi putschists in charge.

Uses them to wage war on their own people. So-called February 12 Minsk resolution is pure fantasy.

No end of conflict looms. Peace is a convenient illusion. So is democracy. America tolerates none at home or abroad.

Throughout Chavez’s tenure as Venezuela’s president, Washington went all-out to oust him. Obama succeeded by killing him.

He wants fascist rule replacing Maduro. Bolivarian social justice ended. Predatory capitalism replacing it.

He’s waging relentless economic and political war. A previous article discussed Maduro accusing Vice President Joe Biden of directing efforts to oust him.

Likely kill him. On February 2, he said, “(t)he northern imperial power has entered a dangerous phase of desperation, going to talk to the continent’s governments to announce the overthrow of my government. And I accuse Vice-president Joe Biden of this” plot.

“There are US diplomats in Venezuela contracting military officials to betray their country, looking to influence socialist political leaders, public opinion leaders and entrepreneurs to provoke a coup.”

He called Washington’s plot no ordinary crisis. He appealed to Venezuelans to remain on high alert against “a bloody coup underway” against everything Bolivarianism represents.

In a televised Thursday address, he announced a US-instigated foiled coup plot.

Saying “(i)t is the government of the United States that is behind the plans of destabilization and coups against Venezuela. I have come here to denounce it.”

“We have dismantled a coup attempt against democracy, against the stability of our homeland.”

“It was an attempt to use a group of officials from the air force to provoke a violent act, an attack.”

Civilians and military members were involved. They were arrested. They remain detained.

They’re connected to four Venezuelan air force generals involved in a 2014 plot to oust Maduro. A State Department spokesperson declined to comment.

Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino Lopez said “Bolivarian Armed Forces remain resolute in their democratic beliefs and reject coup schemes that threaten the peace of the republic.”

National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello explained details of Obama’s plot.

Scheduled on the anniversary of the start of last year’s US-orchestrated street violence. Plans included killing people during marches and demonstrations.

Using a Tucano jet aircraft to bomb strategic targets, including:

  • the Miraflores (presidential palace);
  • military intelligence headquarters;
  • defense and justice ministries;
  • Caracas municipality building;
  • public prosecutor’s office;
  • TeleSUR building;
  • National Electoral Council (CNE); and
  • central Caracas’ Metro station Zona Rental;

Installing “transitional” governance would follow. Opposition legislator Julio Borges was accused of choosing locations to be attacked.

Caracas Mayor Jorge Rodriquez said “he’ll have to explain if he was planning this map of attack targets…”

(A)mong them was the (western area of Caracas) La Cadelaria where the opposition always wins elections…”

(W)hat were they going to say to the people who came out of their houses because they were going to be bombed…”

(W)hen they were going to bomb the international channel, TeleSUR?”

Cabello said authorities seized grenades, military and Sebin (intelligence) uniforms, and a video coup plot declaration by masked military officials displaying deadly AR15 rifles.

Automatic versions can fire 800 rounds per minute. Semi-automatic ones are widely available in America. Venezuelan civilians are prohibited from owning them.

“Venezuela has a very violent sector of the opposition that doesn’t hesitate to plan actions that could mean dozens of deaths or the assassination of the president,” said Rodriguez.

Cabello said Borges and opposition leader Antonio Ledezma planned to announce the coup publicly.

Sign it. Then have corporate controlled anti-Bolivarian national media publish it.

Maduro said one suspect arrested was under surveillance since last year’s street violence. He and others continued plotting to oust Venezuela’s government.

With considerable help from Washington. A four-stage plan was hatched. Including economic and political war.

Inventing a nonexistent humanitarian crisis. A political coup. Followed by a military one installing transitional governance.

Maduro said the plot was discovered after military officials approached to participate reported the scheme to civilian authorities.

On Thursday, Maduro urged Venezuelans to remain on alert. Prepare to counter US-directed fascist attempts to seize power forcefully, he said.

Families of victims of last year’s fascist street violence want everyone to know hard truths about what happened.

Washington’s orchestrated right-wing rampage left 43 dead. Hundreds of others injured. A deadly repeat looms.

Obama wants Venezuela looking like Ukraine. He wants its democratic governance destroyed. Its valued energy resources plundered. Its people exploited.

Venezuelans want the whole world to know what happened last year. What’s planned against their country.

According to a committee representing families of victims of last year’s violence, perpetrators blamed government authorities for their crimes.

Hard truths were “silenced or distorted by some media and politicians, as well as by certain international human rights organizations, which portray the intellectual and material authors of the violence as the victims of state power, forgetting those who really suffered the consequences of the call to violence.”

“That’s why, we have decided to demand that the events be investigated and the truth determined, about who was intellectually and materially responsible for these human rights violations, and what their real motivations were,” they said.

“Above all, that they be punished accordingly. We are convinced that there won’t be justice until the truth of what happened is known by everyone, inside and outside our country.”

The day after Maduro’s April 2013 election, opposition candidate Henrique Capriles called on supporters to rage (arrechera) in the streets.

Weeks of violence, deaths and destruction followed selectively in middle and upscale neighborhoods. The vast majority of Venezuelans opposed it. They still do.

Obama continues going all-out to crush Bolivarianism once and for all. To return Venezuela to its bad old days. To restore dark side rule. Millions of Venezuelans are a bulwark against him.

Obama’s failed scheme is Washington’s latest attempt to replace Venezuelan democracy with fascist rule.

Expect more of the same ahead. Expect Obama to keep menacing humanity throughout his remaining months in office.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net . His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.” http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network. It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs.

http://www.globalresearch.ca/venezuela-foils-obamas-coup-plot/5431160