Man Drowns in 3 feet of Water, Rescuers Present, But Just Following Orders

Another great find from Gary North at the http://teapartyeconomist.com

At what point will these bureaucrats not just follow orders? Is it when the man dies in 3 feet of water in front of them, or when they are ordered (in this case, asking) to machine gun journalists? Or how about killing innocent people at a funeral? What about dropping atomic bombs on thousands of innocent women and children?

I am eagerly awaiting the day when answering to a higher law regains its position above the man-made laws of the state.  I doubt we will ever see that day in our lifetime.  After all, we live in a time where it is acceptable for Christians to commit murder.

On second thought, Christians have been killing since the beginning.  I don’t think that day ever existed. I guess that is kind of the point.  Don’t look for salvation on Earth.  And don’t be surprised when shit like this happens.  I don’t know why I still am.

Calling yourself a Christian (or a Muslim or whatever) is kind of like joining a political party.  You are expected to answer for all the dumb fucks who misrepresent your values but scream them the loudest.  Rick Santorum is to Christianity what bombing citizens of other countries is to loving your neighbor as yourself.  Include other warmongering evangelicals in that as well.  Jesus warned about false prophets. My what a hold they have on our nation.  When will these people turn off their propaganda machines and re-open their Bibles?

The Original article can be found from the Daily Mail here: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2104358/Simon-Burgess-drowned-firemen-refused-wade-3ft-deep-lake-health-safety-rules.html

The article below with Mr. North’s insights can be found here: http://teapartyeconomist.com/2012/02/23/man-drowns-in-3-feet-of-water-in-front-of-rescuers/

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Man Drowns in 3 Feet of Water in Front of Government Rescuers

Written by Gary North on February 23, 2012

That we live in a world gone batty with government regulations comes as no shock. The voters know this. The bureaucrats don’t.

North’s law of bureaucracy: “There is nothing so bizarre that some bureaucrat will not do it by following the rules.”

Example:

A charity worker drowned in a 3ft deep lake when a policeman and a paramedic were ordered not to try to rescue him.

Simon Burgess, 41, was left to float face down as emergency crews watched.

Health and safety rules stopped them going more than ankle deep into the lake, an inquest was told yesterday.

According to a doctor, Mr Burgess’s life could have been saved had he been removed from the water quickly.

The constable and the ambulance worker who volunteered to jump into the lake were given strict orders not to do so by fire station watch manager Tony Nicholls.

Is this bizarre, or what?

It gets more bizarre.

‘The control room was informed I was going in and they sent a message that under no circumstances could I go in the water.’
Wading out: Following the delay, a pair of firefighters make their way into the centre of the waist-deep lake to attempt to rescue Mr Burgess.

A similar story comes from the United States. You can read about it here.

It will not get better as we march into the world of bureaucracy. It will get worse

Continue Reading on www.dailymail.co.uk

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BOMB IRAN!

Reblogged from Jenn Morrill’s great work at www.examiner.com

I highly recommend paying a visit to the original article and subscribing to her future articles.  You can find the original here: http://www.examiner.com/independent-in-salt-lake-city/bomb-iran-billboard-salt-lake-sparks-controversy

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‘Bomb Iran’ billboard in Salt Lake sparks controversy

A new billboard went up Thursday off I-215 in West Valley City, Utah that has evoked a strong reaction among viewers, which, the designer of the billboard says, was exactly the point.

In large red letters, “Bomb Iran!” is scrawled across the sign. At first glance, many are certain to wonder why someone would pay to put that message on a billboard in the very conservative, heavily Mormon dominated population of Utah. On the second or third glance, the answer might become more obvious.

Above the words “Bomb Iran” is written in smaller lettering, “Support the Troops,” with “Troops” crossed out and replaced with “Military Industrial Complex.” The sign points viewers to www.bombiran.org where it is made clear that the creators of the sign do not actually want to bomb Iran.
One of its designers, Connor Boyack, author and director of The Tenth Amendment Center in Utah, said that the goal of the billboard is to challenge people’s assumptions. He told Examiner,
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Whenever the government drags us into war, the politicians, media, and opinion makers collectively try to claim that we must ‘support the troops’ in their mission (whatever that mission may happen to be) in order to be patriotic Americans. We believe differently, for if a war is illegitimate and immoral, it should be opposed. Ultimately, we want people to go to the website to find some helpful links, book suggestions, and videos to learn more as to why we shouldn’t fight Iran.

The creators wanted an “in your face” way to get the message across and felt the billboard would be a good option. They also felt using sarcasm would be a more effective way of reaching people who do support going to war with Iran. Boyack said, “We wanted people to be at least slightly confused to make them stop and think for a second.”

Though Boyack is a vocal Ron Paul supporter, he said the sign is not a Ron Paul project. It was a grassroots effort, funded by fifty people across the country, but not all of them Paul supporters. He said,

This is an issue much bigger than one man or his campaign to win the presidency. This is a project to educate others; those who want to learn more about the issue by reading the recommended books listed on our website, or by watching the videos, will come to see that Ron Paul’s position on the subject of Iran is the correct one.

In less than 24 hours of the billboard being up, bombiran.org had already received 12,000 visitors.
Boyack believes the conservative, largely Mormon audience is especially receptive, when educated, to the anti-war message, given counsel in Mormon scripture and Church leaders on the subject over the decades.

Boyack said,

But certainly, this isn’t a Mormon thing at all. Utah’s conservative majority claims it supports the Constitution and wants limited government, and yet so many of them support wars such as these — the last batch of which has kept us in the Middle East for a decade with $4 TRILLION spent, thousands of lives lost, tens of thousands more injured, and millions displaced or dead in the region we’ve occupied, invaded, and carpet bombed. Those offensive wars (as would be the case with a war in Iran) are neither constitutional nor reconcilable with limited government, let alone a Christian approach to foreign policy.

Many on social networking sites have been critical of the controversial approach to this subject and don’t believe most people will recognize the sarcasm while driving by at 70 mph. Boyack readily admits the design is not perfect and that the people who were involved with its creation aren’t marketing and design experts. Boyack noted,

It was pretty complicated to pack in a meaningful message that got a point across (that the military-industrial complex encourages and benefits from war), did it concisely, and in a way that got people to think for a minute rather than viewing the billboard and framing it with their preconceived bias and stopping there.

Boyack is unsure of how long the billboard will remain on I-215, saying that it will depend on how much money they are able to raise. Right now, it will probably be about a month. If they do raise additional funds, Boyack says the money might be used to put up a second billboard in another location.

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How to Stop the Next Hitler…by Not Being the Next Hitler

From Lewrockwell.com

Stopping the Next Hitler

by Bill Walker

Previously by Bill Walker: The End of the Phony Express, or: The USPS Goes Postal On Our Economy

The US is about to launch yet another undeclared war on yet another eastern front, this time against Iran. Supposedly our permanent state of war is necessary to “stop the next Hitler”…. in other words, the way to prevent a Nazi regime from arising is to launch surprise attacks on small countries, round up Semitic scapegoats and put them in secret camps, spy on our own people with 17 Gestapo-style intelligence agencies, build a series of invincible robot wonder weapons… wait just a darn minute here. I think our foreign-policy cooks are using the wrong recipe book.

In order to prevent another Hitler, it is necessary to know how Hitlers are made. The National Socialist recipe is in the public domain, available in any historical cookbook. Let’s go into the kitchen with master chef Woodrow Wilson and watch the Nazi soufflé rise.

Hitler: Created by US Intervention, Kept in Power by England and France

Germany and France had fought a war in 1870. Some expendable soldiers died, a few civilians were collateral damage, and a couple border areas changed hands. Overall, the war changed nothing, and after the war Europe returned to peace and business as usual.

In 1917 World War One was on track to burn itself out in similar fashion. Both sides were war-weary; common people had been reminded that being gassed and ripped apart by artillery isn’t really as fun as it sounds. Another peace of exhaustion was in the cards, helped along by military technologies which favored the defender. Trench warfare and railbound supply lines made successful aggression difficult. Millions of troops died without changing the front lines very much.

Woodrow Wilson saved the War To End Wars with a major media campaign and 2.8 million drafted Americans. Funded by the recently created Federal Reserve, the US poured fresh troops and money in to support the British and French empires. This allowed Clemenceau and Lloyd George to launch a total war against the German civilian population.

The Germans signed an Armistice on November 11, 1918. However, the Allies didn’t stop fighting. They used their fleets to blockade (nowadays we would say “to impose sanctions”) Germany until July 1919. At least a quarter of a million Germans were killed by starvation and disease during the blockade.

Backed by their invincible US mercenaries, the French and British looted Germany. The Versailles Treaty prevented economic recovery and any return to normal trade for Germans. The Weimar government tried to pay its impossible foreign debts by inflating the mark, destroying the middle class and discrediting capitalist values like honesty and saving. Socialism of different stripes became the only ideology in Germany.

Without the Versailles Treaty, Hitler would have become a house-painting contractor or maybe a minor artist. Under the Treaty, he became a Messiah. People are evolved to live in tribes, and their default setting is xenophobic tribalism. Germans simply reset to the default setting, as other peoples from Japan to Rwanda have done under economic stress.

After Hitler came to power, the other powers jumped in to… help him. Britain and France pressured the Czechs to cede a strip of land (which coincidentally contained the Czech defense fortifications). After the Czechs were rendered defenseless, Poland and Hungary annexed parts of Czechoslovakia, helping Germany finish it off.

The interventionist policies of the other world powers also helped Hitler make Europe Judenfrei. Britain and France refused to allow most Jews to escape. Even in 1938, at the Evian Conference, the nations of the world continued to restrict Jewish immigration. The US used its navy and coast guard to turn back ships full of escaping Jews. Without these active government interventions, most of the Jews of Germany could have escaped the Holocaust.

So Hitler was created by interventionist foreign policy and war, then enabled by more interventions. After he finally attacked his benefactors in open warfare… they still worked hard to keep him around. The Springfield-toting sniper in Saving Private Ryan asks a simple question: why not send him to shoot Hitler, instead of shooting one German draftee at a time? It’s a very good question.

Did the heroic Allies actually try to remove Hitler and save the Jews, as our current mythology implies? Or did they treat him as just another member of the club, a good ol’ boy engaged in the gentlemanly arts of demagoguery, war, and tax collection? Roger Moorhouse has collected all the attempts on Hitler’s life into one volume. The book is fairly short for lack of material; in general, governments made no serious attempts to kill Hitler. We know they could have, because one construction worker almost succeeded with no assistance.

Saving Corporal Hitler

In 1938, an ordinary German carpenter named Georg Elser was convinced that Hitler was going to plunge Germany back into war. Elser decided to kill Hitler and save the world.

First, he traveled to Munich for the observance of the November 8th anniversary of the 1923 Beer Hall Putsch, an important Nazi holiday. Hitler was obliged to give a speech at the Burgerbraukeller for these festivities. Elser simply went in afterward and bought a beer. He observed the position of the speaker’s lectern and the structure of the hall. Then he went home and got a job in a quarry that used explosives.

In August 1939, Elser moved to Munich. Every evening he bought dinner in the Burgerbraukeller. After each dinner he hid in a storeroom until the employees left. Then he emerged and worked all night, constructing a hidden cavity in a pillar behind the speaker’s dais. On the 2nd of November 1939, he installed a large homemade bomb. On November 5, he set the timers for the evening of November 8 (remember this is a punctual German bomb, it had a backup timer).

On the evening of November 8, Hitler entered the Burgerbraukeller and gave his speech. Unfortunately he was an hour early. Due to bad weather, he had decided to use the train instead of displaying his high-tech flair by flying. So he left the hall at 9:07. Elser’s bomb went off exactly at 9:20, not only blasting the lectern but bringing the whole gallery down onto the dais. Instead of killing Hitler and other high-level Nazis, he got only a few low-ranking supporters.

Elser missed… but not by much. He demonstrated that any individual who put a few months of their time into killing Hitler would have a pretty good chance of success. Unfortunately, as the rest of Moorhouse’s book shows, the major governments of the world never spared as much as one full-time carpenter to kill Hitler. Stalin put elaborate assassination nets in place, but then carefully avoided any harm to Adolf, probably fearing that a less crazy leader would make Germany more powerful.

The democratic Allies did no better. The British demonstrated that they could assassinate even the highest-ranking Nazis deep inside Eastern Europe, by killing Reinhard Heydrich. They produced James Bond weapons like the Welrod pistol and distributed them to resistance movements, and assassinated Nazi small fry all over Europe. But though they did a feasibility study (“Operation Foxley”) on shooting Hitler at his retreat in the Alps, they too left him strictly alone. On April 25, 1945, the British finally made some PR shock and awe by sending 375 bombers to blast Berchtesgaden. The results were the same as the attacks on Saddam Hussein at the beginning of the Iraq War; the dictator was nowhere nearby.

The American war leadership followed the British lead. They preferred to spend billions on bombing ordinary German civilians rather than sending in one sniper to Berlin. (Killing Hitler makes it plain that Hitler drove openly around Berlin until quite late in the war; he would have been no harder to hit than Heydrich). Hitler was left to pursue his campaign against the Jews to the very end.

Governments, whether “democratic” or openly totalitarian, are all driven by the same evolutionary laws. They gain power by maximizing the length and cost of wars.

“War is the health of the State” is a truism because it is true. Governments create and maintain Hitlers; if they remove one it is usually only to install another. (Ask the Poles and the Czechs how much they “benefited” from World War II… unlike switching to Geico, switching to Stalin didn’t save them hundreds of thousands of lives).

Hitler only died as an accidental byproduct of the financial and political machine that was World War. If he had actually used the WMDs that he had built to win on D-Day and/or at Kursk, he might have come to a Cold War accommodation of his own and lived on to die of old age. As it was he simply failed to be a strong enough bogeyman, and was replaced by Stalin and Mao… each of whom killed far more people in peacetime genocides than Hitler.

After World War Two: Let a Thousand Hitlers Bloom

Mao alone killed around 77 million Chinese according to historian R.J. Rummel. Maybe Mao should take Hitler’s place as the generic epithet for politician… but he won’t, since he didn’t lose. In fact, he went on to enjoy hispalaces and harems and die at a ripe old age, much to his own surprise.

Since 1945, the US has given foreign aid to most of the world’s genocidal dictatorships. Pol Pot was on the US dole, even after achieving the all-time record for “proportion of population killed”. Castro was given massive aid after the Bay of Pigs…. and the biggest job security boon to a Latin American dictator ever, in the form of US trade restrictions that kept Castro economically dominant and most Cuban homes free of VCRs.

Ho Chi Minh got a chunk of change from the US after the Vietnam War, although most of his support before that came from Warsaw Pact countries that borrowed the money from US banks. Idi Amin, Julius Nyerere, Robert Mugabe, Mobutu, Charles Taylor… you can just call the roll of dictators and not risk hitting one that wasn’t on the take from official US foreign aid.

Official foreign aid, like the current official US national debt, is just the tip of the iceberg. Unofficial aid can’t even be easily tracked. All a dictator has to do is borrow money from a US bank; with a wink and a nudge from the Federal Reserve, he’s on foreign aid that won’t be on the books for twenty years, and even then not without a real audit of the Fed. This is how “socialist” regimes can exist with no visible means of support; they don’t need a domestic market economy as long as they have their foreign-aid credit card.

So let’s drop the pretense that US intervention is about “stopping the next Hitler”. Our taxes and borrowings and printings and flat-out imaginary wild promises support a worldwide network of little Hitlers, from the ex-Soviet Afghan warlords to the nuclear-armed god-kings of North Korea.

If we want to “prevent the next Hitler”, we first have to stop US foreign aid to all the little Hitlers of the world. Then we have to stop our home-grown Goebbels and Goerings from bankrupting our country with wars on every front. The “next Hitler” is us.

February 17, 2012

Bill Walker [send him mail] lives and works in New Hampshire, where he is active in the New Hampshire Liberty Alliance. Visit hisFacebook page.

Propaganda Works

Sad but true.  It is not just a mindless thought experiment to question what you “know”  and how you “know” it from time to time.

I often enjoy thinking about something absurd that people believed in the past that makes you think, “Oh those ignorant people, man times were primitive back then.”  Then I look at today’s world and try to find what people will say that about us in  50 and 100 years.

Perhaps they will think, Americans actually believed Iran was a threat?  or …pre-emptives attacks were defense?  and …torture was a necessary and acceptable practice? and 1.5. million Iraqi’s died during the war?  and They actually called that defense?  Those are some of mine.  Imagine German children being taught about American military actions post 9/11 in 50 years.

Article Below:

U.S. media takes the lead on Iran

In this April 8, 2008, photo released by the Iranian President's Office, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, center, listens to a technician during his visit of the Natanz Uranium Enrichment Facility.

In this April 8, 2008, photo released by the Iranian President’s Office, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, center, listens to a technician during his visit of the Natanz Uranium Enrichment Facility. (Credit: AP Photo/Iranian Presidents office, File)

(updated below – Update II – Update III – Update IV – Update V – Update VI)

Many have compared the coordinated propaganda campaign now being disseminated about The Iranian Threat to that which preceded the Iraq War, but there is one notable difference. Whereas the American media in 2002 followed the lead of the U.S. government in beating the war drums against Saddam, they now seem even more eager for war against Iran than the U.S. government itself, which actually appears somewhat reluctant. Consider this highly illustrative, one-minute report yesterday from the nightly broadcast of NBC News with Brian Williams, by the network’s Chief Pentagon Correspondent Jim “Mik” Miklaszewski, which packs multiple misleading narratives into one short package:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/32545640

We’re told that if the U.S. ends up in a war with Iran, then “the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet would be the world’s first line of defense“: because Iran is threatening the entire world, and the U.S. would be defending “the world” from this grave Persian menace. Then there’s the ominous claim that “Iranian leaders have threatened all-out war”: but that’s “if Israel launches air strikes against Iran’s nuclear program,” which would already itself be “all-out war.” The NBC story — which begins with video shots of Iranians in lab coats lurking around complex, James-Bond-villain-like nuclear-ish machines — ends with twenty seconds of scary video footage of Iranian missiles being launched, accompanied with this narration: “U.S. officials warn that Iran’s massive stockpile of ballistic missiles is the more serious threat”; after all, “within just the past few days, Iranian leaders [cue video of a scary, ranting Ahmedinijad] have threatened that if attacked, they would launch those missiles at U.S. targets.”

It’s just remarkable to watch the American media depict Iran as the threatening, aggressive party here. Literally on a daily basispoliticaland media figures in both the U.S. andIsrael openly threaten to attack Iran and debate how the attack should happen with a casualness that most people use to contemplate what to have for lunch. The U.S. has orchestrated devastating and always-escalating sanctions which, by design, are wrecking the Iranian economycollapsing its currency, and generating serious hardship for its 75 million citizens. The U.S. militaryhas that country almost completely encircled. The U.S. military behemoth, and Israel’s massive nuclear stockpile and sophisticated weaponry, make the Iranian military by comparison look almost as laughable as Saddam’s. Iran’s scientists have been serially murdered on its own soil, their facilities bombarded with sophisticated cyber attacks, and dissident groups devoted to the overthrow of their government (ones even the U.S. designates as Terrorists) have been armed, trained and funded by Israel while leading American politicians openly shill for them in exchange for substantial payments.

Yet the Manichean narrative driving this NBC report is par for the media course: Iran’s aggression must be contained, and it is leaving the U.S. and Israel with no choice but to pre-emptively attack it. Most telling is how Iran is continuously depicted as though they are the ones issuing threats of aggression even though all of their threats are retaliatoryif you attack us, we will attack back. Here, for instance, was how The Washington Post – under the headline “Iran, perceiving threat from West, willing to attack on U.S. soil, U.S. intelligence report finds” — described the recent warnings about The Iranian Danger from Director of National Intelligence James Clapper:

That plot “shows that some Iranian officials — probably including Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei — have changed their calculus and are now more willing to conduct an attack in the United States in response to real or perceived U.S. actions that threaten the regime,” Clapper said in the testimony, which was submitted to the Senate Intelligence Committee in advance of a threat assessment hearing Tuesday. “We are also concerned about Iranian plotting against U.S. or allied interests overseas.”

As this blogger correctly observed:

What I like about the latest Iranian hijinks is that everyone is so forthright about the fact that any increase in Iranian bellicosity–ahem, “real or perceived”–is the direct result of American sword-rattling. There’s not even a stutter in the direction of circumlocution. It’s all straight up: “Senator, we are concerned that the Iranians may respond if we go to war with them.” It may necessitate a war! 

The propaganda at play here is intense indeed. For several years, the U.S. and Israel threaten on an almost daily basis to aggressively attack a country, all while engaging in multiple acts of war against them, and then when their leaders suggest they may not acquiesce to such an attack with passivity and gratitude, those vows of defensive retaliation are used to depict them as the threat-issuing aggressors. And the American media, as always, eagerly implants the propaganda. Thus, if such a war breaks out, NBC News‘ Mik announces, “the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet would be the world’s first line of defense,” though those crazed Persian leaders have threatened to use “Iran’s massive stockpile of ballistic missiles” and to launch those missiles at U.S. targets.”

I used to find somewhat baffling this bizarre aspect of American public opinion: time and again, Americans support whatever new war of aggression their government proposes, then come to regret that support and decide the war was a “mistake,” only to demonstrate that they learned no lessons from their “mistake” by eagerly supporting whatever the next proposed war is. Thus did the widespread belief that Vietnam was a “mistake” have no impact on their support for the attack on Iraq, and now — with some pollsshowing Americans, before their government even proposes it, preliminarily willing to cheer on an attack on Iran — it is clear they have learned nothing from their acknowledged “mistake” in supporting the attack on Iraq. Most Americans continue with this strange mindset: we realize we were wrong to support those past wars you gave us, but we stand ready and eager to support this next one!

But when you look at reports such as this one from NBC last night — and it was nothing unusual: I just happened to stumble into it by accident — it’s not hard to see why this happens. When continuously bombarded with authoritative voices uncritically warning them of the Grave Threat posed by the New Hitlers, and with powerful images of menacing missiles and unhinged leaders accompanying those warnings, even rational populations will become sufficiently scared into succumbing to the next act of aggression. The only thing unusual here is that, with Iran, the American media actually seems out in front of the U.S. Government in the propaganda effort rather than in their normal position of submissively marching behind.

UPDATE: The latest episode being used to fuel the flames of war are two attacks yesterday on Israeli diplomats: one in India and one in Georgia. The headline in The Washington Post tells you all you need to know about how these attacks are being used: “Israel blames Iran for India and Georgia bombing attempts; Tehran denies role.” As Juan Cole points out, Indian investigators do not believe Iran was responsible, though he writes that “American media just parrot” the accusations against Iran by Israeli officials. We’ll likely never know who was actually responsible, though what is clear is that the attacks are being instantly exploited by Israel-devoted neocons to further depict Iran as a Grave Menace (Jennifer Rubin, Washington Post: if Iran is responsible, it’s “one more piece of data that Iran is growing ever bolder and more aggressive”), all without noting the glaring irony that the mode of attack in India is virtually identical to the one used to kill numerous Iranian scientists (“a magnetic bomb was slapped onto [the] car by a passing motorcyclist”). One thing is crystal clear, as macgupta put it in the comment section: “In any case, no matter who the perpetrators are, these attacks are a sign that we are moving closer to a war with Iran.”

UPDATE II: Speaking of mindless media recitations designed to fuel war, we find this today at The New York Times – Ground Zero for such behavior — from Ethan Bronner, whose son, until very recently, was in the Israeli Defense Forces:

If actually carried out by Iran, the attacks would be another indication that the leadership in Tehran was willing to reach beyond its borders against its enemies and expand its attacks to civilians. The United States has charged that Iran was behind a plot to assassinate a Saudi ambassador on American soil, and Israel has said that Iran has planned to attack its citizens in various countries, but that those plots were stopped.

There is absolutely no evidence beyond the assertions of the U.S. and Israeli governments that Iran has done any such thing — indeed, the plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador was so facially incredible that it provoked widespread mockery even among the types of Foreign Policy Experts who reflexively endorse whatever the U.S. Government says and does — but Bronner simply assumes those claims are true and thus says that if Iran is behind these latest attacks, then it is “another indication that the leadership in Tehran was willing to reach beyond its borders against its enemies and expand its attacks to civilians.” He also then quotes an anonymous Israeli official about the India bombing this way: “Iran’s fingerprints are all over this,” but Bronner ignores — simply does not mention — the substantial evidence to the contrary. The whole article is written so blindly from the Israeli perspective that it is what would have been produced had Bronner asked his son’s former comrades to write it for him, but this is absolutely the norm: anything the Americans and Israelis want to highlight as proof of Iranian evil and aggression will be regurgitated by most American journalists writing about this conflict.

UPDATE III: In The Wall Street Journal today, Mitchell Silber — identified as the director of intelligence analysis for the New York City Police Department — warns today that Iran may very well attack New York. I’m not joking:

The NYPD must assume that New York City could be targeted by Iran or Hezbollah. . . .  Iran’s U.N. mission allows officials from Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence to live and operate in New York with official diplomatic cover. . . . Iran also has a presence in New York via the Alavi Foundation, a nonprofit ostensibly devoted to charity works and promoting Islamic culture. . . .  the NYPD must remain vigilant in attempting to detect and disrupt any attack by Iran or its proxies. Anything less would be abdicating our duty to protect New York City and its residents.

The whole fear-mongering screed is equally inane. Also, in that aforementioned NYT article by Bronner, he writes: “Some American Jewish leaders have expressed concern that synagogues and American Jewish centers could be targets in the increased tensions.” Identically, also in the Wall Street Journal today, Alan Dershowitz warns that Iran may attack American synagogues and demands that the U.S. treat any such attack as an attack on the U.S. and respond accordingly (“The Iranian government has now made crystal clear that it is at war not only with Israel and Zionism but with Jewish communities throughout the world”). Look at the coordinated, hysterical frenzy they’ve worked themselves and others into (and oh: Iran helped Al Qaeda with the 1998 embassy bombings and, needless to say, did 9/11here’s a billboardthat recently appeared in NYC). How soon until will we hear that laboratory tests on the anthrax sent to Tom Daschle detected the presence of a chemical used only by Persians?

UPDATE IV: This nicely summarizes the state of American neocon foreign policy discourse at the moment:

I actually consider the discussion there mildly more elevated and sober than that Wall Street Journal Op-Ed from the NYPD official today warning of an Iranian attack on New York City.

UPDATE V: Regarding the current attempt to depict Iran as monstrous aggressors because they dare suggest they may retaliate if attacked, see this short 2003 Onion article, published 9 days before the U.S. attacked Iraq.

UPDATE VI: I was on Cenk Uygur’s CurrentTV program tonight discussion media coverage of Iran, as well as the report documenting U.S. tactics of drone attacks aimed at rescuers and funerals attendees:

Glenn Greenwald
Follow Glenn Greenwald on Twitter: @ggreenwald.More Glenn Greenwald

Foreign Policy Experts Agree With Ron Paul

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2011/11/foreign-policy-experts-agree-with-ron-pauls-controversial-foreign-policy/

This is not a great article, it doesn’t tell us anything we didn’t already know, but this is the last headline I thought I would read from any MSM organization the week of the Iowa Caucus.  Therefore it gets re-posted for its “main street appeal.”

From ABC News, no less.

Nov 6, 2011 7:00pm

Foreign Policy Experts Agree With Ron Paul’s Controversial Foreign Policy

gty ron paul jt 111106 wblog Foreign Policy Experts Agree With Ron Pauls Controversial Foreign Policy(Steve Pope/Getty Images)

Ron Paul is often chided by his Republican opponents for his extreme views on American foreign policy.  His calls for ending all foreign wars and shutting hundreds of military bases across the globe have drawn howls from his GOP rivals, who have labeled the moves irresponsible and naïve.

His campaign pledge of cutting all foreign aid and withdrawing U.S. participation in the World Trade Organization and the United Nations has been at odds with even the most conservative members of his own party.

Yet as voting day in Iowa and New Hampshire draws near, Paul, the Congressman from Texas, is finding support for his non-interventionist positions from a growing number of foreign policy experts.

“He’s attacking our rich lazy friends, why is that not more popular,” said  Harvey Sapolsky, emeritus professor of public policy and organization at MIT. He backs Paul’s calls for reducing America’s military budget, arguing that much of it is used to defend wealthy nations’ security.

A huge, Cold War-era global presence — with hundreds of overseas military bases — isn’t necessary, now that the Soviet threat is over and the collapse of communism, Sapolsky said.

“It’s not in America’s interest,” said Sapolsky, who added that despite the drumbeat in the media over the fear of terrorism, America is the safest it has ever been in its history.

Christopher Preble, vice president for defense and foreign policy studies at the Cato Institute, is also another foreign policy expert who agrees that the United States is extraordinarily secure due to its geography and nuclear weapons, and doesn’t need a huge global presence.

He also argued that the United States’ military is being used in overseas conflicts with little or no national interest, specifically pointing to the U.S. invasion of Iraq.

Preble gave Paul credit for being one of the few outspoken critics of the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

For sure America’s attitudes toward the war has changed and popular opinion seems to be on his side.

It’s evident at most of his campaign stops, where Paul’s calls for the troops to return home are met with thunderous applause and the occasional standing ovation.

But not all of Paul’s foreign policy positions have gone over well.

Paul has often said that America encourages terror by stationing troops worldwide.

“That’s irresponsible,” former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum said. “A future president of the United State should not be parroting what Osama Bin Laden said on 9/11.”

Santorum, who is among Paul’s  rivals for the GOP presidential nomination, challenged him at a recent debate, to explain his view that American overseas domination caused the Sept. 11 attacks.

Paul’s answer received a hostile response from the audience and even a few boos.

Paul’s view that a withdrawal of U.S. troops would decrease the incentive for terrorists to attack the United States got him into trouble with a Concord, N.H., voter earlier this year, who questioned his sanity.

“Anyone who thinks that is off their rocker,” she said.

“He’s easily dismissed as a crank,” said Sapolsky, who says Paul has good ideas but can be an inarticulate messenger.

Like most aspects of running a national political campaign, style often outweighs substance and both Sapolsky and Preble said that Paul is neither a great orator nor does he break down large global situations well.

But despite his shortcomings, Sapolsky does give Paul credit for speaking his mind.

“A lot of people won’t say come home,” Sapolsky said. “But Ron Paul does and that’s great.”

Can You Hear It?

No?  Put your ear to the ground…you hear it now don’t you?  That faint rhythmic sound, like an army marching in the distance.  Yep, that is the sound of another march to war (That endless thing our elected dictators like to do every other day).  Looks like today’s drumbeat is for the Iranians.  How lucky for them.  Is it just me or is Obama’s administration getting increasingly fear mongerish?  It seems like the Propaganda Machine gets a turn more dialed up daily. Might we see a resurgence of the color coded terror alert scale?

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/12/us/us-accuses-iranians-of-plotting-to-kill-saudi-envoy.html?_r=1&emc=na

U.S. Accuses Iranians of Plotting to Kill Saudi Envoy

By 
Published: October 11, 2011

Federal authorities foiled a plot by men linked to the Iranian government to kill the Saudi ambassador to the United States and to bomb the embassy of Saudi Arabia in Washington, Attorney GeneralEric H. Holder Jr. said in a news conference on Tuesday.

The men accused of plotting the attacks were Manssor Arbab Arbabsiar and Gholam Shakuri, according to court documents filed in federal court in the Southern District of New York. The Justice Department said men are originally from Iran.

There is “no basis to believe that any other co-conspirators are present in the U.S.,” Mr. Holder said.

He said the men were connected to the secretive Quds Force, a division of Iran’s elite Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps that has carried out operations in other countries. He said that money in support of the plot had been transferred through a bank in New York, but that the men had not yet obtained any explosives.

The Justice Department said in a statement that Mr. Shakuri, a member of the Quds force, remained at large. Mr. Arbabsiar, a naturalized American citizen, was arrested on Sept. 29.

Mr. Holder said the Mexican government had been instrumental in the investigation.

Iran reacted immediately to the news, calling the accusations a fabrication.

Details offered by the Justice Department painted a picture of a dizzying international plot involving Mexican drug cartels, murder for hire and huge sums of money being transferred from unknown locations.

The department said in its criminal complaint that from the spring of this year, Mr. Arbabsiar conspired with Mr. Shakuri to plot the assassination of the Saudi ambassador to the United States, Adel A. Al-Jubeir. According to the complaint, conspirators based in Iran were aware of and approved the plan, which involved hiring men connected to a Mexican drug cartel to carry out the killing.

The complaint alleges that those hired by the two men were in fact confidential sources of the Drug Enforcement Agency. They were later asked if they were knowledgeable in bomb-making, the complaint said, Mr. Arbabsiar “was interested in, among other things, attacking an embassy of Saudi Arabia.”

The criminal complaint filed on Tuesday accuses the men of conspiracy to murder a foreign official; conspiracy to engage in foreign travel and use interstate and foreign commerce facilities in the commission of murder-for-hire; conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction. specifically explosives; and conspiracy to commit an act of international terrorism.

ABC News, citing an unnamed official, reported that the plot also included plans to bomb the Israeli Embassy in Washington, as well as those belonging to Saudi Arabia and Israelin Buenos Aires, Argentina.

A spokesman for the National Security Council said that the plot had first been brought toPresident Obama’s attention earlier this year.

“The President was first briefed on this issue in June and directed his Administration to provide all necessary support to this investigation,” he said in a statement. “The disruption of this plot is a significant achievement by our intelligence and law enforcement agencies, and the president is enormously grateful for their exceptional work in this instance and countless others.”

Abdullah Alshamri, a Saudi official in Riyadh, predicted the disclosure would send Iranian-Saudi relations to “their lowest point yet.” Though no government steps had been taken, he suggested that a diplomatic row was inevitable.

“We’re expecting from our government a serious and tough reaction to give a message to the Iranians that enough is enough,” he said by telephone. “If we keep our diplomatic ties with the Iranians, they will think we are weak and they will keep trying to attack us.”

He said this was only the latest Iranian attempt to attack Saudi diplomats.

“This is their hobby,” he said. “Iran has no respect for international law.”

Anthony Shadid contributed reporting from Beirut and Mark Landler from Washington.