North American News


America dropped 26,171 bombs in 2016. What a bloody end to Obama’s reign

terrorobama

10th Jan 2017

Most Americans would probably be astounded to realize that the president who has been painted by Washington pundits as a reluctant warrior has actually been a hawk. The Iran nuclear deal, a herculean achievement, and the opening of diplomatic relations with Cuba unfortunately stand alone as President Obama’s successful uses of diplomacy over hostility.

While candidate Obama came to office pledging to end George W Bush’s wars, he leaves office having been at war longer than any president in US history. He is also the only president to serve two complete terms with the nation at war.

President Obama did reduce the number of US soldiers fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq, but he dramatically expanded the air wars and the use of special operations forces around the globe. In 2016, US special operators could be found in 70% of the world’s nations, 138 countries – a staggering jump of 130% since the days of the Bush administration.

Looking back at President Obama’s legacy, the Council on Foreign Relation’s Micah Zenko added up the defense department’s data on airstrikes and made a startling revelation: in 2016 alone, the Obama administration dropped at least 26,171 bombs. This means that every day last year, the US military blasted combatants or civilians overseas with 72 bombs; that’s three bombs every hour, 24 hours a day.

While most of these air attacks were in Syria and Iraq, US bombs also rained down on people in Afghanistan, Libya, Yemen, Somalia and Pakistan. That’s seven majority-Muslim countries.

One bombing technique that President Obama championed is drone strikes. As drone-warrior-in-chief, he spread the use of drones outside the declared battlefields of Afghanistan and Iraq, mainly to Pakistan and Yemen. Obama authorized over 10 times more drone strikes than George W Bush, and automatically painted all males of military age in these regions as combatants, making them fair game for remote controlled killing.

President Obama has claimed that his overseas military adventures are legal under the 2001 and 2003 authorizations for the use of military force passed by Congress to go after al-Qaida. But today’s wars have little or nothing to do with those who attacked the United States on September 11, 2001.

The twisted legal architecture the Obama administration has constructed to justify its interventions, especially extrajudicial drone killings with no geographic restrictions, will now be transferred into the erratic hands of Donald Trump.

What does the administration have to show for eight years of fighting on so many fronts? Terrorism has spread, no wars have been “won” and the Middle East is consumed by more chaos and divisions than when candidate Barack Obama declared his opposition to the invasion of Iraq.

While the switch from US troops on the ground to airstrikes and special forces has saved US lives, untold numbers of foreign lives have been snuffed out. We have no idea how many civilians have been killed in the massive bombings in Iraq and Syria, where the US military is often pursuing Isis in the middle of urban neighborhoods. We only sporadically hear about civilian killings in Afghanistan, such as the tragic bombing of the Doctors Without Borders hospital in Kunduz that left 42 dead and 37 wounded.

Pushed to release information about civilian deaths in drone strikes, in July 2016 the US government made the absurd claim it had killed, at most, 116 civilians in Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia and Libya between 2009 and 2015. Journalists and human rights advocates said the numbers were ridiculously low and unverifiable, given that no names, dates, locations or others details were released. The London-based Bureau of Investigative Journalism, which has tracked drone strikes for years, said the true figure was six times higher.

Given that drones account for only a small portion of the munitions dropped in the past eight years, the numbers of civilians killed by Obama’s bombs could be in the thousands. But we can’t know for sure as the administration, and the mainstream media, has been virtually silent about the civilian toll of the administration’s failed interventions.

In May 2013, I interrupted President Obama during his foreign policy address at the National Defense University. I had just returned from visiting the families of innocent people killed by US drone attacks in Yemen and Pakistan, including the Rehman children who saw their grandmother blown to bits while in the field picking okra.

Speaking out on behalf of grieving families whose losses have never been acknowledged by the US government, I asked President Obama to apologize to them. As I was being dragged out, President Obama said: “The voice of that woman is worth paying attention to.”

Too bad he never did.

 

 

source:https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/jan/09/america-dropped-26171-bombs-2016-obama-legacy?CMP=fb_gu

Claim: Trump ‘Threatens Mental Health of Young Californians’

snowflake-sjw-truth

9th Jan 2017

President-elect Donald Trump is causing mental health problems for young people in California. That’s according to claims by “advocates, educators and mental health providers” who say Californian youth are troubled by Trump’s policies towards illegal immigration, and that they feel targeted by “hate crimes” attributed — rightly or wrongly — to Trump’s supporters.

Jocelyn Wiener of Kaiser Health News, via the East Bay Times, reports: “Around the country, children and adolescents who are undocumented immigrants or who have undocumented family members, are experiencing a surge in stress, depression and anxiety, according to advocates, educators and mental health providers. The same is true for young people belonging to other groups targeted by threats or hate crimes, including Muslim and transgender youth.”

No actual proof is offered, however, either by the “advocates” or Wiener herself.

“Reports of these mental health concerns remain mostly anecdotal so far,” she admits. But she quotes a professor at Stanford University — an avowedly anti-Trump academic named Keith Humphreys, whose political sentiments she declines to mention — who tells readers that “Muslims, Jews, Latinos, African-Americans and women and victims of sexual assault” are now, thanks to Trump’s victory and the “hateful rhetoric” attributed thereto, “uncertain whom they can trust.”

Wiener also prints the “fake news” claim that “During his campaign, Donald Trump announced plans to create a Muslim registry.” As Breitbart News noted at the time, and again today, Trump never made that suggestion, which was entirely created by the mainstream media out of its own totalitarian fantasies in an effort to help Trump’s political rivals.

If such nightmares torment the youth of California, the fault lies with Hillary Clinton and the mainstream media, which spread doomsday scenarios about what might happen if Trump won, and only amplified the hysteria after Election Day.

Responsible “advocates, educators and mental health providers” ought to explain to young people — immigrants in particular — the importance of elections, the virtue of political tolerance, and the legitimacy of democratic opposition.

 

 

source: http://www.breitbart.com/california/2017/01/08/mental-health-claim-trump-threatens-young-californians/

Combat veterans with genital injuries find little help

support-troops

9th Jan 2017

Five months after his 32nd birthday, Aaron Causey stepped on a bomb. The newlywed from Alabama was on his second overseas Army deployment, working as an explosives technician in Afghanistan. That morning in 2011, Aaron was on the hunt, peering inside tunnels for improvised explosive devices.

Before he saw the small bundle of plastic and copper wires, he had stepped on it. The blast ripped off his legs and traveled through his groin. One testicle was destroyed, only two-thirds of the other remained.

Four days later in a German hospital, Kat Causey walked into her husband’s hospital room. “Don’t throw up. Don’t throw up,” she told herself. The words repeated in her head as she stared at Aaron. How can he still be alive, she wondered. Her husband was in pieces. Surely their plans for having a baby were shattered.

The blast from an IED hits from below. It can hollow out a soldier’s pelvis, shredding the shaft of the penis, obliterating testicles and destroying the bladder and the tubes that carry urine and sperm.

Fighting on the front lines in Afghanistan means hopping out of trucks to walk on foot in terrain too rugged for military vehicles. Experts say service members are more vulnerable to IED blasts than ever before.

That could explain why more than 1,400 U.S. troops suffered injuries to the penis, testicles or bladder from 2001 to 2013 while serving in Afghanistan and Iraq. Their average age was 24. Experts describe the rise of genital injuries from combat as “unprecedented.”

Blasts powerful enough to amputate legs and genitalia used to mean almost certain death. These days, advanced medical care in the field and quick evacuation to specialist trauma centers means soldiers who suffer severe blast injuries have a better chance of surviving.

Surviving means repeat surgeries, re-imagining relationships and wondering if you’ll ever enjoy sex or have children. And while there are more conversations about brain injuries and post-traumatic stress disorder in troops, experts and families say there’s not enough discussion about the men who return home with the most taboo of injuries.

Counting the injured

At his office in the San Antonio Military Medical Center, Army Maj. Steven Hudak tracks the number of wounded military service members. When he’s not treating the injured — Dr. Hudak is a reconstructive urologist — he studies the Department of Defense Trauma Registry to learn what kinds of injuries are afflicting military members across the services.

In a recent paper published in the Journal of Urology, Hudak and colleagues wrote that there are more U.S. service members surviving with genitourinary injuries than ever before in the history of war. They described the different types of genital trauma suffered by young military men and said the range of trauma to the penis and testicles is varied.

“There’s no characteristic pattern among the men who have penile injuries,” Hudak says. “Really every service member that I’ve treated for a penile injury had a different kind of injury.”

Of the more than 1,400 men who suffered injuries to the genitals while serving in Iraq and Afghanistan over a 12-year period, 75 men died from their wounds and were excluded from the analysis.

Hudak found that of the 1,367 wounded service members who survived, 3 out of 4 had injuries to the penis, scrotum or testicles. A third had injuries that were classified as severe and 84 suffered severe injuries to the penis.

In a separate study of soldiers injured in Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom between 2001 and 2011, Hudak’s team found 501 men suffered genital and urinary system injuries and that 1 in 5 of them had an injury to the penis.

Overall, the greatest number of severe injuries were among those who had testicular damage, says Hudak. “That obviously has a different set of ramifications with regards to long-term fertility potential.”

President Obama Awards Himself Distinguished Public Service Medal

bama-medal

5th Jan 2016

On Wednesday, President Obama added another prestigious medal to his Nobel Prize collection when he had Defense Secretary Ash Carter award him with the Department of Defense Medal for Distinguished Public Service.

Secretary Carter awarded his boss with the medal on January 4 during the Armed Forces Full Honor Farewell Review for the President held at Conmy Hall, Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Virginia.

Carter insisted that the medal was a token of appreciation for Obama’s service as commander in chief, the Associated Press reported.

After spending the last few weeks throwing roadblocks in the path of President-elect Donald Trump and his transition team, Obama nonetheless claimed in his remarks to the members of the military in attendance that “We’ve got to make sure that during this transition period that there is a seamless passing of the baton, that there’s continuity.”

Along with the AP, CBS News White House correspondent Mark Knoller also marked the ceremony with a Tweet to his followers.

Many commenters on Knoller’s Twitter feed were incredulous at the award. Some likened the award to a much maligned “participation medal” and others were skeptical of Obama’s underling giving his own boss a medal.

 

 

source:http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2017/01/04/president-obama-awards-himself-distinguished-public-service-medal/

Male college students to undergo ‘critical self-reflection’ of masculinity

what?

4th Jan 2016

Goal is to create a sense of security in vulnerability …’ 

The University of Wisconsin-Madison is currently taking applications for its “Men’s Project,” a six-week program that aims to counter the alleged harmful effects of society’s masculinity paradigms and pressures and empower participants to promote “gender equity.”

“Men’s Project creates a space for critical self-reflection and dialogue about what it means to be a man and how masculinity impacts us and those around us,” organizers state in promoting the effort.

“The experience focuses on the examination of societal images, expectations, and messages around masculinity to empower men to better understand themselves, promote the advancement of gender equity, and raise consciousness in their communities,” organizers add.

It’s open only to “men-identified students” at the public university and “operates on a transformative model of social justice allyship,” according to a news release on the university’s website, which adds “by encouraging that kind of dialogue among a men-identified cohort, the goal is to create a sense of security in vulnerability throughout the six-week program.”

Participants will begin the project with a weekend retreat in February and continue meeting weekly, discussing topics such as media and pop culture, vulnerability, sexuality, hook-up culture, alcohol, relationships and violence.

The program is now in its second year and was most recently offered in fall 2016, according to its Facebook page.

In an email to The College Fix, the University of Wisconsin-Madison director of news and media relations Meredith McGlone said the project serves an important purpose.

“Recent research suggests college campuses have not effectively addressed [male students’] needs,” she stated. “Research also indicates that expectations around masculinity impact the way in which men experience college.”

McGlone suggested typical understandings of masculinity can effect male students in a negative way.

“These expectations influence the decisions men make about friendships; spending time outside of class; careers or academic majors; and sexual and romantic relationships. Men are socialized to believe they need to act a certain way to be accepted as ‘masculine’ or have what it takes to be a man,” she told The Fix.

“This can lead to self-destructive behaviors that impair their ability to complete their education,” she continued. “Research indicates that young men are less likely to enroll in and graduate from college, less likely to seek help from campus resources and more likely to engage in risky behaviors such as abusing drugs and alcohol. Research also indicates that programs such as the Men’s Project can counter these negative trends and support college men in their educational experience.”

Asked to define vulnerability in the context of the program, McGlone told The Fix it’s “one of the discussion topics related to male stereotypes. Students consider if they struggle with being vulnerable and how it might impact their relationships and actions.”

According to McGlone, there were no specific incidents which spurred the development of this program.

The University of Wisconsin-Madison is not the only university offering such a program. Many other campuses, both public and private across the nation, now offer programs, trainings, guest lectures and other educational techniques that seek to purge male students of their so-called toxic masculinity.

 

 

source; http://www.thecollegefix.com/post/30561/

If You Were Chief Of CIA Consciousness Ops

monarch-butt

1st Jan 2016

There is an obsession to say that everything is made out of something.

Who knows where it started? With the Egyptian pyramid builders? The Sumerians?

In the modern era, the fervor has reached a high point.

Physicists, biologists, and chemists are relentless in their pursuit of consciousness as a function of the brain. It has to be the brain. All those synapses and neurons and chemicals…and underneath them, the atoms and the sub-atomic particles…somehow these tiny particles conspire to produce consciousness and awareness.

Yet these same scientists deny that a sub-atomic particle carries any trace of awareness. The particles flow. They obey laws. That’s all.

So the experts are painted into a corner. They then speculate: “Well, you see, the increased ability to process information, the complexity of structure—naturally, this implies consciousness.”

No it doesn’t.

A Ferrari is complex. So is the Empire State Building. So is the IBM’s best computer. And? Where is the consciousness?

You, sitting there right now, reading these words—you understand the words; you KNOW you’re reading them; you’re not just processing information. YOU ARE CONSCIOUS.

If a physicist wants to say that you, knowing you’re reading, are just a phenomenon of atoms in motion, let him try, let him explain. Let him do more than bloviate.

Imagine you were the chief of a CIA section called Consciousness Covert Ops. What would you try to do, given that your motive, as always, is control?

You would try to convince the population that consciousness isn’t free and wide-ranging and powerful and independent. You would try to narrow the popular belief about consciousness.

What better way than to focus on the brain as the seat of all awareness?

“The brain functions according to laws. We’re discovering more and more about those laws. We can determine when the brain is malfunctioning. We’re learning how to correct those malfunctions.”

Indeed.

You’re spinning narrative about the brain as if it were a car that has to visit the shop. That’s what you want. You want to make people believe their brains need fixes, because, after all, you come out of the long tradition of CIA MKULTRA mind control.

When the brain comes into the shop, you can try to reprogram it. You can experiment. You can apply the latest technology. You can attempt to insert controls. You can place monitors in the brain, in order to observe it in real time.

At a more basic, yes, philosophic level, you want to eliminate any sort of movement claiming that consciousness is separate from the brain. You want to snuff that idea out. It’s counter-productive, to say the least. It could give rise to a renaissance of an old outmoded notion called: freedom.

What could be more free, more independent, more unique, more creative than individual consciousness that has a non-material basis?

You want to do everything you can to equate consciousness with the brain and, thus, the modern idea of the computer. Yes, the computer. Perfect.

“Consciousness is a computer operating at a very high level.”

“All computers can be improved.”

“All computers can malfunction. They can be repaired.”

And then, the ultimate coup:

“Consciousness? A very old idea that, in light of the progress of technology, has no merit. It’s really information processing. The brain handles that. The brain is a computer. We’re learning how to build a better brain…”

You’re shifting the focus of the old 1950s MKULTRA program, which mainly involved drugs and hypnosis, to a new arena. You’re coming at the territory inside the skull from a number of angles. You’re the next generation of Brave New World.

And right across town, the Pentagon and its research branch, DARPA, is deeply involved in a number of allied research projects. For example, the cortical modem, a little piece of equipment that costs about $10.

The gist? Insert proteins into neurons, and then beam photons into those proteins, thus creating image displays that bypass the normal channels of perception.

Virtual reality with no headset. The project is still in its early stages, but the direction is clear: give the “user” an image display beyond his ability to choose.

It’s touted as an overlay. The person, walking down the street, can still see the street, but he can also see what you give him, what you insert into his visual cortex. Of course, as the technology advances, you could take things further: block out physical reality and immerse the person in the virtual.

DARPA’s enthusiasm about this project, as usual, exceeds its current grasp, but its determination to succeed is quite genuine. And the money is there.

Think about this. Which way is a bright college student going to go? He can study ancient philosophy, in the least popular department on campus. He can read the Vedanta, and plow through its explications of consciousness. Or he can study biology and physics, and then try to land an entry job with the Pentagon, where he can fiddle with the human brain for fun and profit. This student has been thoroughly immersed in computers since he could crawl. He understands what they do and how they work. He’s been taught, over and over, that the human brain (consciousness) is a computer. So what path will he take?

Over and above everything I’m pointing out in this article, there is a human capacity called imagination. It’s the wild card in the deck. It’s the greatest wild card ever known. It is, in fact, the cutting edge of consciousness. It invents new realities. It releases gigantic amounts of buried energy. And it’s entirely an individual proposition.

I built my second collection, Exit From The Matrix, on that basis: the liberation and expansion of imagination. Not just in theory, but in practice. There are dozens of imagination techniques to work with.

Brain=computer=consciousness is the greatest covert op on the planet. It’s supported with major money and labs and journals and armies of psychiatrists and neurological professionals and physicists and the military.

And the op is completely false, because, again, the very scientists who push it are saying the brain is composed of sub-atomic particles THAT CONTAIN ZERO CONSCIOUSNESS.

Think about that.

They’re saying consciousness arises out of particles that have no consciousness.

 

source:http://www.activistpost.com/2016/12/chief-cia-consciousness-ops.html

image; Mnm network

Families upset the Army used their loved ones bodies for IED blast testing without consent

shha

28th Dec 2016

Dying at the age of 74, Doris Stauffer had suffered from dementia in her later years. During her time alive, she was cared for by her son, Jim Stauffer.

When the time came to put his mother to rest in 2013, Stauffer made the choice to donate he brain to medical research, hoping to possibly help find a cure for Alzheimer’s disease.

Not knowing where to turn, Stauffer took the advice of a nurse and contacted the now-defunct Biological Research (BRC), a company that brokers donations of human remains for the purposes of research. Signing a series of forms (including one prohibiting military, traffic-safety and other non-medical experiments), he watched as his mother was carted away by a BRC vehicle driver.

Ten days later, Stauffer received Doris’ cremated remains, not being told how they were used.

An investigation by Reuters would later show that the ashes Stauffer received were not that of a whole body- but just the hand of his mother. The rest, records show, went to a taxpayer-funded research project for the US Army, testing the effects of roadside bomb blasts (also known as IEDs) on human beings.

Dying an aging civilian in her 70s, Doris Stauffer’s body suffered the fate similar to that suffered by many young service members over the past decade- and then some.

Informed by a Reuters reporter instead of the US Army or the BRC, Jim Stauffer made attempts to hide his horror as he clutched his wife’s arm.

“We did right,” his wife, Lisa, told him. “They just did not honor our wishes.”

Internal records from the BRC and US Army show that 20 other bodies were used in the blast experiments without donor/relative permission, violating US Army policy. The bodies were sold by BRC for a little under six grand each.

Reuters reports that over 20,000 body parts from 5,000 corpses have been sold by BRC in over a decade, eventually resulting in the company going under- with CEO Stephen Gore pleaded guilty to fraud in 2015.

In a statement to Reuters, Gore said he tried to honor the wishes of donors and sent forms when researchers asked for them.

“This was an industry that had no formal regulations,” he said. “Many times I was simply overwhelmed and I tried to do the right thing but often did not.”

Army officials claim never received the consent signed forms from donors or their families, relying on assurances from BRC that families had consented to let the bodies be used in such experiments.

While the case into BRC is a long one, the US Army experiments were a little more cut-and-dry.

In the wake of two long, brutal wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, blast research has been a hard-fought and crucial learning curve in the study of IED blasts on the human body. What has been learned so far is that the most vulnerable body parts are those in contact with the inside surfaces of the vehicle.

“It’s your feet, your butt in the seat, and to some extent your back,” said Army project director and civilian engineer Randy Coates, who works at Maryland’s Aberdeen Proving Ground.

While crash dummies were initially useful, they were unable to properly collect data on all angles of a blast effect, being unable to determine the effect of blasts from under a vehicle.

aberddeen

Aberdeen Test Center at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, employs an expansive inventory of “anthropomorphic test devices,” otherwise known as crash test dummies, to ensure armored vehicles will protect their occupants from roadside bombs. (Photo Credit: Aberdeen Test Center )

Enter the medical cadaver, which was able to sufficiently collect data from all angles. However, while cadavers were better at measuring blast effects, they could not replicate wounds- which prompted the US Army to create a test dummy that could show the effect of explosions. The US Army project that used Stauffer’s mother was such an experiment, which included more than one hundred deceased bodies and included researchers from nine universities.

Coates said that while donated bodies are not obliterated in explosions, the blasts do break bones and spines. In one experiment, two bodies wired to 100 biosensors flailed about but were left intact.

While the US Army has a policy requiring donors and next of kin to consent to the experiments, less than half of 34 people who were donated/self-donated were not informed of the experiments. Of those families, 16 did not want military experiments conducted. Twelve had explicitly rejected violent experiments and four made no choice.

Many families are outraged, including Marla Yale, whose grandfather -Army veteran Kurt Hollstein- had explicitly rejected being used by the government, an act of protest against the poor treatment he was provided by the VA. He died of cancer in 2013.

“This is almost beyond belief that his entire body went somewhere else without his permission, and especially to a place that he absolutely did not want to be,” Yale said after Reuters informed her of her grandfather’s fate. “To go to the Department of Defense is absolutely mind-boggling.”

Coates has rebutted that the Army acted in good faith, as it had believed that the consent forms they received from BRC were valid. When it was discovered that BRC was not acting within the law, the US Army halted the experiments and sent an officer to investigate.

“The Army was a victim of BRC business practices,” he said.

BRC head Stephen Gore had previously worked as an insurance salesman prior to creating his company and had no higher education credentials at the time of the company’s founding.

 

 

 

source: http://popularmilitary.com/families-upset-army-used-loved-ones-bodies-ied-blast-testing-without-consent/

Obama Quietly Signs The “Countering Disinformation And Propaganda Act” Into Law

big-brother-1984

27th Dec 2016

Late on Friday, with the US population embracing the upcoming holidays and oblivious of most news emerging from the administration, Obama quietly signed into law the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) which authorizes $611 billion for the military in 2017.

In a statement, Obama said that:

Today, I have signed into law S. 2943, the “National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017.” This Act authorizes fiscal year 2017 appropriations principally for the Department of Defense and for Department of Energy national security programs, provides vital benefits for military personnel and their families, and includes authorities to facilitate ongoing operations around the globe. It continues many critical authorizations necessary to ensure that we are able to sustain our momentum in countering the threat posed by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant and to reassure our European allies, as well as many new authorizations that, among other things, provide the Departments of Defense and Energy more flexibility in countering cyber-attacks and our adversaries’ use of unmanned aerial vehicles.”

Much of the balance of Obama’s statement blamed the GOP for Guantanamo’s continued operation and warned that “unless the Congress changes course, it will be judged harshly by history,” Obama said. Obama also said Congress failed to use the bill to reduce wasteful overhead (like perhaps massive F-35 cost overruns?) or modernize military health care, which he said would exacerbate budget pressures facing the military in the years ahead.

But while the passage of the NDAA – and the funding of the US military – was hardly a surprise, the biggest news is what was buried deep inside the provisions of the Defense Authortization Act.

Recall that as we reported in early June, “a bill to implement the U.S.’ very own de facto Ministry of Truth had been quietly introduced in Congress. As with any legislation attempting to dodge the public spotlight the Countering Foreign Propaganda and Disinformation Act of 2016 marks a further curtailment of press freedom and another avenue to stultify avenues of accurate information. Introduced by Congressmen Adam Kinzinger and Ted Lieu, H.R. 5181 seeks a “whole-government approach without the bureaucratic restrictions” to counter “foreign disinformation and manipulation,” which they believe threaten the world’s “security and stability.”

Also called the Countering Information Warfare Act of 2016 (S. 2692), when introduced in March by Sen. Rob Portman, the legislation represents a dramatic return to Cold War-era government propaganda battles. “These countries spend vast sums of money on advanced broadcast and digital media capabilities, targeted campaigns, funding of foreign political movements, and other efforts to influence key audiences and populations,” Portman explained, adding that while the U.S. spends a relatively small amount on its Voice of America, the Kremlin provides enormous funding for its news organization, RT.

“Surprisingly,” Portman continued, “there is currently no single U.S. governmental agency or department charged with the national level development, integration and synchronization of whole-of-government strategies to counter foreign propaganda and disinformation.”

Long before the “fake news” meme became a daily topic of extensive conversation on such discredited mainstream portals as CNN and WaPo, H.R. 5181 would task the Secretary of State with coordinating the Secretary of Defense, the Director of National Intelligence, and the Broadcasting Board of Governors to “establish a Center for Information Analysis and Response,” which will pinpoint sources of disinformation, analyze data, and — in true dystopic manner — ‘develop and disseminate’ “fact-based narratives” to counter effrontery propaganda.

In short, long before “fake news” became a major media topic, the US government was already planning its legally-backed crackdown on anything it would eventually label “fake news.”

* * *

Fast forward to December 8, when the “Countering Disinformation and Propaganda Act” passed in the Senate, quietly inserted inside the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) Conference Report.

And now, following Friday’s Obama signing of the NDAA on Friday evening, the Countering Disinformation and Propaganda Act is now law.

* * *

Here is the full statement issued by the generously funded Senator Rob Portman (R- Ohio) on the singing into law of a bill that further chips away at press liberties in the US, and which sets the stage for future which hunts and website shutdowns, purely as a result of an accusation that any one media outlet or site is considered as a source of “disinformation and propaganda” and is shut down by the government.

President Signs Portman-Murphy Counter-Propaganda Bill into Law

Portman-Murphy Bill Promotes Coordinated Strategy to Defend America, Allies Against Propaganda and Disinformation from Russia, China & Others

U.S. Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Chris Murphy (D-CT) today announced that their Countering Disinformation and Propaganda Act – legislation designed to help American allies counter foreign government propaganda from Russia, China, and other nations has been signed into law as part of the FY 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) Conference Report. The bipartisan bill, which was introduced by Senators Portman and Murphy in March, will improve the ability of the United States to counter foreign propaganda and disinformation from our enemies by establishing an interagency center housed at the State Department to coordinate and synchronize counter-propaganda efforts throughout the U.S. government. To support these efforts, the bill also creates a grant program for NGOs, think tanks, civil society and other experts outside government who are engaged in counter-propaganda related work. This will better leverage existing expertise and empower our allies overseas to defend themselves from foreign manipulation. It will also help foster a free and vibrant press and civil society overseas, which is critical to ensuring our allies have access to truthful information and inoculating people against foreign propaganda campaigns.

“Our enemies are using foreign propaganda and disinformation against us and our allies, and so far the U.S. government has been asleep at the wheel,” Portman said. “But today, the United States has taken a critical step towards confronting the extensive, and destabilizing, foreign propaganda and disinformation operations being waged against us by our enemies overseas. With this bill now law, we are finally signaling that enough is enough; the United States will no longer sit on the sidelines. We are going to confront this threat head-on. I am confident that, with the help of this bipartisan bill, the disinformation and propaganda used against us, our allies, and our interests will fail.”

The use of propaganda to undermine democracy has hit a new low. But now we are finally in a position to confront this threat head on and get out the truth. By building up independent, objective journalism in places like eastern Europe, we can start to fight back by exposing these fake narratives and empowering local communities to protect themselves,” said Murphy. “I’m proud that our bill was signed into law, and I look forward to working with Senator Portman to make sure these tools and new resources are effectively used to get out the truth.”

orwell-was-right

NOTE: The bipartisan Countering Disinformation and Propaganda Act is organized around two main priorities to help achieve the goal of combatting the constantly evolving threat of foreign disinformation from our enemies:

  • The first priority is developing a whole-of-government strategy for countering THE foreign propaganda and disinformation being wages against us and our allies by our enemies. The bill would increase the authority, resources, and mandate of the Global Engagement Center to include state actors like Russia and China as well as non-state actors. The Center will be led by the State Department, but with the active senior level participation of the Department of Defense, USAID, the Broadcasting Board of Governors, the Intelligence Community, and other relevant agencies. The Center will develop, integrate, and synchronize whole-of-government initiatives to expose and counter foreign disinformation operations by our enemies and proactively advance fact-based narratives that support U.S. allies and interests.
  • Second, the legislation seeks to leverage expertise from outside government to create more adaptive and responsive U.S. strategy options. The legislation establishes a fund to help train local journalists and provide grants and contracts to NGOs, civil society organizations, think tanks, private sector companies, media organizations, and other experts outside the U.S. government with experience in identifying and analyzing the latest trends in foreign government disinformation techniques. This fund will complement and support the Center’s role by integrating capabilities and expertise available outside the U.S. government into the strategy-making process. It will also empower a decentralized network of private sector experts and integrate their expertise into the strategy-making process.

* * *

And so, with the likes of WaPo having already primed the general public to equate “Russian Propaganda” with “fake news” (despite admitting after the fact their own report was essentially “fake“), while the US media has indoctrinated the public to assume that any information which is not in compliance with the official government narrative, or dares to criticize the establishment, is also “fake news” and thus falls under the “Russian propaganda” umbrella, the scene is now set for the US government to legally crack down on every media outlet that the government deems to be “foreign propaganda.”

Just like that, the US Ministry of Truth is officially born.

 

 

source:http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-12-24/obama-signs-countering-disinformation-and-propaganda-act-law

Rand Paul Is Unhappy About Trump’s ‘Bilderberg’ Cabinet

money

26th Dec 2016

Senator Rand Paul is not happy with some of the cabinet picks by president-elect Donald Trump. So much so that he took to Twitter today to deliver an ‘airing of grievances’.

Paul tweeted that he was celebrating “Festivus,” a reference to an episode of the sitcom “Seinfeld,” during which a non-commercial Christmas is celebrated by the characters in December 23rd. The airing of grievances in the episode is an opportunity for the characters to lash out at each other and everything around them that has annoyed or frustrated them for the past year.

 

Paul began his Twitter storm by poking fun at “fake news,” stating that ‘Festivus is real,’ and adding that ‘The Onion is more accurate than a Brian Williams report’:

 

Paul then turned to Trump’s cabinet picks, referencing Infowars’ own Alex Jones to make a point:

 

Paul followed up on his ‘Bilderberger’ jibe by referencing billionaire Paypal owner Peter Thiel, an actual Bilderberg member, who is involved with the Trump transition team.

 

The libertarian leaning Senator also hit out at arch neocon John Bolton, who was being touted for the Secretary of State position, prior to Trump’s appointment of Exxon CEO Rex Tillerson.:

 

Paul also mocked Texas Governor Rick Perry, who has been slated to run the Department of Energy, a department Perry previously stated that he wished to abolish:

 

Paul has been outspoken in his opposition to some of the names Trump has floated to take positions in his administration, warning that some are ‘unfit’ for government.

 

Trump has come under increased scrutiny in recent days as some have accused him of abandoning a campaign promise to ‘drain the swamp’ of Washington insiders.

 

 

 

 

source: http://www.infowars.com/rand-paul-is-unhappy-about-trumps-bilderberg-cabinet/

Self-Driving Uber Apparently Runs Red Light In San Francisco

fuck-da

17th Dec 2016

A self-driving Uber car was caught on camera apparently running a red light in San Francisco Wednesday.

Uber launched the fleet of self-driving Volvo SUV’s Wednesday morning, just hours before the incident.

Dashboard video from a Luxor Cab captured the Volvo apparently running the light after the taxi had stopped for the light. Just in front of the SFMOMA building.

 

There was also a second incident reported by Twitter user Annie Gaus Wednesday morning. She initially posted at 9:48 a.m. that she saw “a ‘self-driving’ Uber” that entered the intersection on Van Ness Avenue on a red light and nearly hit the Lyft car she was riding in.

According to Uber, the cars aren’t yet ready to hit the streets without someone monitoring them, meaning someone from the company was likely behind the wheel. A statement issued by Uber Wednesday afternoon attributed the red-light being run in the video to an error by the person monitoring the car.

“This incident was due to human error,” the statement read. “This is why we believe so much in making the roads safer by building self-driving Ubers. This vehicle was not part of the pilot and was not carrying customers. The driver involved has been suspended while we continue to investigate.”

State regulators said Wednesday afternoon that Uber must stop the self-driving car service until it receives a permit from the state.

 

 

 

source;http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2016/12/14/self-driving-uber-apparently-runs-red-light-in-san-francisco/