Statement by David Swanson as Director of World Beyond War at DC press conference August 8, 2017.
I won’t have time to list all the reasons I want U.S. military planes and drones out of Syrian skies much less all the reasons people have noted in comments on our petition, but there’s no question what my first reason is, although it’s not a reason always given much weight here in Washington.
‘It has been a splendid little war, begun with the highest motives, carried on with magnificent intelligence and spirit, favored by that Fortune which loves the brave.’ US Secretary of State John Hay, defining the Spanish-American War of 1898, in a letter to Theodore Roosevelt, July 27 of that year, the war ushering in America’s Imperial era and unequivocally heralding its hegemonic ambitions.
The main criticism of US policy in Syria has long been that President Barack Obama should have used US military force or more aggressive arms aid to strengthen the armed opposition to Assad. The easy answer is that the whole idea that there was a viable non-extremist force to be strengthened is a myth – albeit one that certain political figures in London and Washington refuse to give up.
Critics have long questioned why violent intervention was necessary in Libya. Hillary Clinton’s recently published emails confirm that it was less about protecting the people from a dictator than about money, banking, and preventing African economic sovereignty.
The US-led NATO alliance is dispatching warships to the Mediterranean to allegedly help ease Europe’s refugee crisis. However, a closer look at the naval vessels in the NATO mission shows that this is no refugee rescue attempt – but rather a full-on war mobilization.
The Saudi plan to send ground troops into Syria appears to be just a ruse. But this is precisely the kind of reckless saber-rattling that could ignite an all-out war, one that could embroil the United States and Russia.
Seymour Hersh’s recent revelations about an effort by the US military leadership in 2013 to bolster the Syrian army against jihadist forces in Syria shed important new light on the internal bureaucratic politics surrounding regime change in US Middle East policy. Hersh’s account makes it clear that the Obama administration’s policy of regime change in both Libya and Syria provoked pushback from the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS).
The anti-Assad coalition led by the United States continues to stagger toward the supposed objective of beginning peace negotiations between the Syrian government and what has now been blessed as the politically acceptable “opposition”. The first such meeting was scheduled for 1 January, but no one on either side believes for a moment that any such negotiations are going to happen any time in the foreseeable future.
In 2009, the US Agency for International Development, USAID, created a Twitter-like social network called ZunZuneo in order to fuel dissent in Cuba. According to the Associated Press, the service was intended to let users not only discuss topics such as sports and music, but also organize protests, voice dissent, and avoid censorship in the island nation. Topping out at around 40,000 users that the US gathered demographic and other information on, the program was ended after a government grant expired in September 2012. RT’s Ameera David dives into the details of this newly revealed USAID program.
More than 83 percent of the qualified voters of Crimea recently participated in a referendum to rejoin Russia. And of that number well over 93 percent voted to separate themselves from Ukraine and once more become a part of Russia, in what was a massively one-sided victory .
What should be kept in mind is that Crimea would never have pursued such an action, and Russia would never had been receptive to such a course, were it not that Ukraine was in the grip of disruptive forces that were driving toward “regime change.”
Days before Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych was ousted from office he was told it was “game over” by America’s Vice President Joe Biden. According to the British Guardian newspaper, quoting anonymous US officials, Biden admonished the Ukrainian leader in an hour-long phone call that his efforts for finding a negotiated solution to the country’s political crisis was “a day late and a dollar short”. That’s hardly the friendly advice of a neutral bystander.