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Mike Pompeo claims “active” terror cells in Venezuela (Video)

The Duran Quick Take: Episode 79.

Alex Christoforou

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The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris discuss US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s claim that Hezbollah is now “active in Venezuela”, and for this reason a US military intervention in the Latin American country is justified.

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Via Zerohedge

Two weeks ago, when remarking sarcastically about the upcoming “requirement” for a US military presence in or around Venezuela where the situation is increasingly looking like a replay of events in Syria pitting the US and “western powers” on one said and Russia and China (and Turkey) on the other, we said that it’s only a matter of time before ISIS made a dramatic appearance in Latin America.

We thought we were joking.

It turns out the joke was on us, because – in an apparent failure to come up with an even remotely original narrative for another imminent American intervention – US secretary of state Mike Pompeo said on Wednesday night that, drumroll, “Hezbollah has active cells in Venezuela.” Well, we were wrong about ISIS at least

As the Trump administration has continued to ratchet up pressure on the Latin American nation amid a crippling political and economic crisis, and hinted on several occasions that US troops would be deployed, Mike Pompeo told Fox Business that “people don’t recognize that Hezbollah has active cells” in the country, adding that “the Iranians are impacting the people of Venezuela and throughout South America. We have an obligation to take down that risk for America” he said, quoted by the Independent.

Sigh.

Ironically or not, when it comes to Hezbollah, which the US has long considered a terrorist organisation, sanctions on people in Venezuela linked to the Iranian-backed Lebanese group have been imposed as far back as the George W Bush administration, seemingly in anticipation for just such an event.

Washington also believes Latin America has served as a base of fund-gathering for the group for some years, including through drugs and money-laundering schemes, according to past reports and to justify said close link, the media notes that Venezuela’s former president Hugo Chavez formed tight links with Iran under Mahmoud Ahmedinejad’s leadership. Supposedly that is a sufficient and necessary condition to conclude that Maduro is now harboring terrorists, which in turn would require a US “peacekeeping” mission.

And just so the US population does not lose plot, later in his Fox interview, the former CIA director described Maduro as “evil” and insisted the US was intervening on behalf of ordinary Venezuelans who have suffered under his rule.

In other words, yet another “humantiarian” coup under US auspices.

“We should not permit a country in our hemisphere to treat its own people this way,” he said, despite Washington’s – and the CIA’s – dismal track record of fomenting government overhauls in the region. “American values – America’s, not only our interests but our values – are at stake here.”

It wasn’t clear just which values he was referring to.

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Olivia Kroth
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TASS reports:
Venezuela’s PDVSA shifts oil ventures’ accounts to Russia’s Gazprombank — media

Venezuela’s state-run oil company PDVSA (Petroleos de Venezuela, S.A.) is telling customers of its oil joint ventures to deposit sales proceeds at an account at Russia’s Gazprombank.

US uses humanitarian crisis in Venezuela as cover-up for own military plans — Maduro
Reuters said PDVSA’s move follows new US financial sanctions imposed on January 28 and aimed at blocking President Nicolas Maduro’s access to Venezuela’s oil revenue.

More:
http://tass.com/economy/1043998

Olivia Kroth
Guest

Venezuelan officials announced the seizure of a large shipment of US weapons bound for anti-Maduro “terrorist groups”. Source: Endes Palencia, Venezuela’s Deputy Minister of Prevention and Public Safety, published photos of the intercepted weapons shipment to social media, seized at a Venezuelan airport: 19 rifles, 118 rifle chargers, 90 radio antennas, high-caliber ammunition, and six cellphones were shipped from the US to the Airport of Valencia. They came to Venezuela aboard an Airbus N881YV from Miami, Florida. Twitter: Endes Palencia Ortiz @PalenciaEndes All ports of entry and customs checkpoints throughout Venezuela are under tight security, a military build-up ordered by… Read more »

Olivia Kroth
Guest

I do not believe that the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela will break down at all. They have been under pressure from the US since Hugo Chavez became President, since 1998. They have kept their strength for more than 20 years now, and they will keep resisting US pressure for sure, with Russian and Chinese help.

FlorianGeyer
Guest
FlorianGeyer

China and Russia though to not have the Force Projection capabilities to fight a war against US aggression in the US ‘Backyard’, and I doubt that the Russian public would support that anyway

It is a ‘Bridge too Far’I think.
Africa is a better continent to trade with and the US is not powerful there, as they are in South America.

Sadly the Venezuelan people who oppose the US, may only be able to utilise tactics that cost the US multi-billion dollars in Iraq. The topography of Venezuela would support armed resistance against the US. Every American being a target.

Olivia Kroth
Guest

Venezuela is not in anybody’s “backyard”. Venezuela is a sovereign country of South America.
Yes, Russia and China have the necessary capabilities to defend their ally Nicolas Maduro. He is still the democratically elected President and he will stay put.

Pompeo is a liar. He has “active terror cells” in his brain. Maybe he is suffering from a brain tumor?

FlorianGeyer
Guest
FlorianGeyer

Although I agree with your sentiments, in reality, it is easy for the US to blockade shipping and aircraft entering Venezuela.

Russia and China would not be able to supply Venezuela with such a blockade in place.

I understand that it would be totally illegal for the US to do this without a UN Mandate, but when has the US bothered about International Law in the past?

Olivia Kroth
Guest

Russia already has a military airbase in the Venezuelan island of La Orchilla, while the USA has none. And they will never get one. A lot of hot air, exhaled by the pompous ass Pompeo. Russia ships and flies all the goods and military hardware it wants to Venezuela and will certainly continue doing so. Furthermore, Russia’s Rosneft oil company has a stake in Venezuela’s state oil company, while the USA has none. And this will remain so, whether the USA like it or not. And last but not least, Gazprom bank is servicing Venezuelan oil sales worldwide. They are… Read more »

ManinTheMoon
Guest
ManinTheMoon

Whatever happens to Maduro – and I would not pretend any more knowledge of Venezuela than Alexander – Russia and China would be crazy to back Guido, who clearly has no support even among the military let alone among the people at large. If the US were ever to force him into power – and it’s difficult to imagine how – there would be chaos. Russia and China would have no interest at all in being part of this. However, Alexander has missed a crucial part of the jigsaw and that is that the Chinese have plans for a new… Read more »

Olivia Kroth
Guest

The best source for Russia is the Russian news agency TASS, not the US media Bloomberg. Bloomberg is a CIA outlet, part of the US Deep State disinformation network.

In TASS, there is nothing at all about Russia dropping President Maduro in Venezuela. On the contrary. They are preparing new UN resolutions for vote, and GAZPROM bank is taking over payments for Venezuelan oil so that the treacherous US banks will not continue to steal Venezuelan money. I believe that President Maduro will still be there, long after Pompeo, Bolton, Trump will be gone. Good riddance to bad rubbish!

Norwegian
Guest
Norwegian

However:

Russia’s Gazprombank rejects report on Venezuelan oil giant’s new accounts
http://tass.com/economy/1044015

Olivia Kroth
Guest

TASS is a truthful news media, it never lies.

http://tass.com/economy/1044015

The second paragraph of this text explains:

“… As one of the world’s major oil companies, PDVSA opened accounts in many large banks, including international ones. Several years ago PDVSA opened accounts in Gazprombank Group as part of cooperation with several Russian companies, which are the bank’s clients….”

Venezuela is placing its revenues from oil sales in OLD ACCOUNTS it has with Gazprom bank. They were opened under the presidenchy of Hugo Chavez.

Olivia Kroth
Guest

President Nicolas Maduro says that Pompeo is lying.
He says that there is no Hezbollah presence in his country.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=9&v=VgipIhoczwE

Marcus
Guest
Marcus

My opinion (and you know what they say about opinions, every A*****e has one) is that the Als are too pessimistic about Maduro’s ability to survive. For the Venezuelans, choosing between Maduro and Guido, my opinion is that they would choose Maduro. With the American regime’s blatant intervention, my opinion is that this will harden the people’s detestation of Yankees telling them what to do. In the end, Maduro’s (and Russia, China and other’s need to cut this Gordian knot) route is to call for a series of elections over a period of a month or so. First for the… Read more »

Tjoe
Guest
Tjoe

Pompeo should know…he’s part of the people that are encouraging and paying for this coup.

Vera Gottlieb
Guest
Vera Gottlieb

And what about all the ‘terror cells’ in the US???

Platon
Guest
Platon

What do you mean “in the US”?
The US is a terror cell, and not much else besides.

Haroeris Falcon Netter
Guest
Haroeris Falcon Netter

pompeo, trump, has beens, attempt to magical birth thier difficulties into Venzuela, The benifit is not thiers, Docket Gold, Palace facade with Russian Jet..The Gold Horus Netter- Mr.Maduro The King that mediates between Heaven and Earth. Heru-Ur Nette.r Have a good day Mr. Mercouris and The Duran, We care about Europe, I hope for good efforts and opportunities to recover what the world is in need of, European Affluence Possibly Based on New World with Russian contribution of Ivan St. Basils Opener of Ways Atum…One Generation of Hebrews realizing its optimun connection and support for the following generations, fluid, powerfull,… Read more »

Ugh...
Guest
Ugh...

What ridiculous commentary from people that represent the US. Americans should be absolutely ashamed and humiliated by these type comments as they are so asinine and flat out stupid.

Marshall
Guest
Marshall

No! You like to watch movies? Alot of plausible deniabilities, but when what were in movie form now communicates itself in schematical structural lanquage you dont approve? Is scooby doo not working for you anymore-gen in complaint about fighting hybrids. They go into actual divine affluences corrupt lie and steal putting them in a narrative that it was devine to start with, easily reunderstood. The mechanics, the stomping not aware barbarian, however Europeans are of a different sort, if they stop using thier minds rationalities, they get overwhelmed by the machine. King David had this perplexion, they are evil wrong,… Read more »

Heru-Ur Netter
Guest
Heru-Ur Netter

Another attempt, Heru- Ur to this country- Jump in the Fire when you see Paradise, Twice

2nd tiger
Guest
2nd tiger

Enhancement, scooby doo with reunderstood, after they convert from the devine the world must bear and grin in the trivalities they get to playout after, the world could be on the verge of annihalation and they would still be Acting in vanity debasing emphasis wasting the worlds time in thier malwares dictate of exceptionalism, you made the observation that Russia in 1990 s difficulties this country seemed to be enjoying it, when Russia Federation gets its act together they are not so well pleased? Less exceptionalism? Mr. Mercouris and the Duran, Foundational New World, Redirection into last to 1st time… Read more »

Marshall
Guest
Marshall

Britexit difficulties, what would they become if Europe New World get its act together? Clarification, Jumping into the Fire when they see Paradise is by my application intent applied to the Malware not to schematically correct or close to positions. Marshall, New World affillated

Taras 77
Guest
Taras 77

Agree but what can you expect from the vipers nest of zionists-truth does not matter, it is the lies that supports the narrative.

Gyre
Guest
Gyre

Most likely illiterate US army bootcamp wash-outs getting paid (not much) to troll websites like this.

Platon
Guest
Platon

Terrorist cells, eh? Mike Blowjob would know. He put them there.
Take note nations of the world, the coup now takes place in broad daylight. Back this one and you WILL be next. It is just a matter of time.

Marshall
Guest
Marshall

Mr. Mercouris and the Duran, When the Foundations be destroyed what shall the Righteous do, David celebrating the God that delivered from Philistia throws it into the Bath or She-pool of water, Greece Rome…I tell you from these stones or rocks that god is able to rise up or express children of abram, Your heritage is much more believable. The Foundations changed a reconfiqured schematical of the first, New World Atum Opener of Ways Las Californias Domican Republic, Ivan via Atums usage redirected from 1st to last to last to first with 2nd Las Californias. Russia with ark of gabriel… Read more »

Taras 77
Guest
Taras 77

This guy has no shame, no embarassment, no truth, no facts. He is an evil zionist.

Regula
Guest
Regula

How could “American values” possibly be at stake in Venezuela? Could somebody explain to me exactly why US values are so fragile a plant that it dies from the “cold” winds of the Venezuelan state? If understood the opposite way around, namely that just about every nation’s values are threatened by the US, that statement would have some truth. Which makes it clear right up front that the US and Pompeo in particular is trying again to concoct some grand conspiracy scheme that would then justify war on most of the world, including of course Iran, Russia, China, Syria, Yemen,… Read more »

Olivia Kroth
Guest

Very true. Very well explained, thank you, Regula. Indeed, there are no “American values” at stake in Venezuela, which is a South American sovereign country with its own values. US Americans should take note that there is South America, Central America and North America. The USA are a part of North America, together with Mexico and Canada. Central and South America comprise many sovereign countries. They all have their own values, and rightly so. The USA should stop trying to export their “values”. They are not appreciated elsewhere. By the way, when will that US wall to Mexico finally be… Read more »

Terry Wall
Guest
Terry Wall

You guarantee that there will be terrorist cells in Venezuela. Mercenaries funded by the CIA. Keep up the good work Maduro. Most of the literate world understand exactly, what is going on.

Marshall
Guest
Marshall

Legal Notice, Situation in Venzuela part or all is in the Juristiction of Horus of Gold Ren. Osiris Horus of Gold, 5 titulary Rens, King, Further this position may also be affillated in the Wealth producing Nations replacing Genisis deficiting nations Platform ..The details forth coming when available, gold not for Youtube, this country..Mr. Mercouris Attorney extra ordinaire likly is not available for this type of action..a pity. There are 3-5 other difficulted nations in that region, they may realise affillation to above affluence. At this point The King position was attributed to Mr. Maduro, if correct, this could be… Read more »

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Russia’s Rosatom is the world leader in international construction of nuclear power plants

Rosatom is currently constructing the Akkuyu nuclear power plant in Turkey.

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In spite of western sanctions, Russia’s Rosatom is the world’s number two in uranium reserves and has become number one globally in the implementation of nuclear reactor projects. Currently, Rosatom is working on six reactor projects in Russia and 36 abroad. Rosatom has acquired 67 per cent of the world nuclear plant construction market, the orders portfolio exceeding $133 billion. Rosatom is working on nuclear plants in Turkey, China and Bangladesh, to name just a few of the countries, where the Russian corporation is present. Rosatom is highly respected as the global technological leader in high-performance clean energy solutions and was also recently named best Russian employer for the year of 2018 by an international headhunter firm. On the 15th and 16th of April 2019, the eleventh ATOMEXPO FORUM was held in Sochi, Russia, upon invitation by Rosatom.

The Russian State Corporation Rosatom (Росатом), established in 2007, has its headquarters in Moscow. The organization comprises more than 360 enterprises, including scientific research organizations and the world’s only nuclear icebreaker fleet. Since 2016, its General Director is Alexey Likhachev.

Rosatom was ranked number one as best employer of Russia in 2018 by HeadHunter, a top HR management platform and resource centre. In a vote, the company achieved the highest score by employees, candidates and experts out of over 1.000 big Russian companies. Commenting on the accolade, Tatyana Terentyeva, HR Director of Rosatom, said:

“We’re immensely proud of this achievement which is a testament to our strong company culture of always putting our people first. The growth of regional and international projects has given employees and applicants a chance of working in multicultural, cross-divisional and cross-functional project teams. Digitalisation, alone, will open vacancies for 1.000 new specialists this year, from software developers to product and data scientists.”

“We believe that the responsibility lies with human capital stakeholders, such as large multinationals, universities and governments to begin discussing the policy response in earnest. We hope that the gathering of these parties at the global Skills Summit, taking place alongside the WorldSkills 2019 Conference in Kazan this August, to address the global skills gap which affects everyone, will be an important starting point from which companies and governments can work together to help solve this issue”, she further commented (CISTON PR NEWSWIRE, 28.03.2019).

Rosatom is currently constructing the Akkuyu nuclear power plant in Turkey. Laying the foundation has already been completed. The 17.000 cubic metres of self-compacting concrete foundations are due to be followed by the construction of the exterior and interior walls of the reactor. Construction of the concrete bases for the auxiliary reactors and control room have also begun. The work meets International Atomic Energy Agency safety standards.

Rosatom said that the entire first reactor would be finished by the end of the year 2019, with engineering studies for the second reactor already in progress and documentation being prepared to construct the third reactor in Turkey’s Mediterranean province of Mersin. The Russian nuclear utility is due to build four reactors, each with a capacity of 1.2 gigawatts. The plant is anticipated to have a working life of 8.000 hours per year and produce 35 billion kilowatts of electricity at full capacity. That will meet 10 per cent of Turkey’s electrical demands, according to the Turkish authorities. Akkuyu has an operational date for the first reactor in 2023 with full capacity targeted by 2025 (ENERGY REPORTERS, 15.03.2019).

In China, Rosatom built the Tianwan nuclear power plant, Phase I, Phase II and Phase III. Now, the Russians will construct Tianwan Phase IV. The general contract was signed in March this year for the construction of two further Russian-supplied reactors at the Tianwan nuclear power plant in China’s Jiangsu province. In addition, a technical design contract was signed for a second pair of reactors at the Xudabao site in Liaoning province.

Rosatom said that the contracts had been prepared in accordance with the strategic package of agreements signed during a visit by Russian President Vladimir Putin to China, in June 2018. This package defines cooperation between Russia and China in the nuclear industry for the coming decades.

Tianwan Phase I – units 1 and 2 – was constructed under a 1992 cooperation agreement between China and Russia. The first concrete was poured in October 1999. The units were commissioned in June 2007 and September 2007, respectively. Tianwan Phase II – units 3 and 4 – was constructed from December 2012 until December 2018. Unit 3 entered commercial operation in February 2018, with unit 4 following in December 2018. Tiawan Phase III – units 5 and 6 – both featuring Chinese-designed 1080 MWe ACPR1000 reactors, were begun in December 2015. Units 5 and 6 are planned to go into commercial operation by the end of 2021 (WORLD NUCLEAR NEWS, 12.03.2019).

Another Rosatom construction site is located in Bangladesh. Both Dhaka and Moscow expressed their satisfaction over the progress of construction work of the Rooppur nuclear power plant. It is being implemented under an intergovernmental agreement, signed between Russia and Bangladesh in November 2011. In December 2015, Atomstroyexport, Rosatom’s subsidiary, was appointed as general contractor for the construction of the Rooppur plant with two VVER 1200 power units, each with a capacity of 1.200 megawatts. In 2015 and 2016, preparatory work was carried out at the construction site, working documentation was developed and licencing documents were prepared.

In 2017, the regulatory authority of Bangladesh (BAERA) issued the required licence for the design and construction of the plant. In July 2018, unit 2 also went into the active phase of construction, following the “first concrete”. In August 2018, the installation of the “core catcher”, one of the most important passive safety systems, began at unit 1. The installation of the “core catcher” for unit 2 began in February 2019. Currently, construction of the main buildings of both power units is underway (DHAKA TRIBUNE, 10.03.2019)

Rosatom has further ambitious plans for NPP construction worldwide. Building a network of nuclear reactors across the world will help to extend Moscow’s influence into global energy markets, as it offers competitive deals and comprehensive service, including the provision of plutonium. Kirill Komarov, deputy CEO of Rosatom, told the media:

“We are the ultimate leader in the majority of nuclear sectors. Most of our projects are in the developing world. These are the countries which show the strongest economic growth. China, India, Southeast Asia, countries in the Middle East region. We see countries on the African continent and in Latin America.”

Kirill Komarov explained that “Rosatom is offering solutions for developing countries to enable them negotiating the regulatory challenges involved with going nuclear. Rosatom is a unique company in that we have activities in all areas of the nuclear business; starting with mining of natural uranium, enrichment fuel fabrication, developing our own nuclear equipment, construction of nuclear power plants, decommissioning, waste management … everything” (ENERGY REPORTERS, 05.10.2018).

General Director of Rosatom is Alexey Likhachev. He assumed office in October 2016. Alexey Likhachev graduated from Gorky State University and started his career as an engineer in the Gorky Research Institute of Instrumentation. In 1998, he graduated from the Economic Faculty of Nizhniy Novgorod State University with a Ph.D. in economics.

In 2007, Alexey Likhachev joined the Ministry of Economic Development of Russia, where he held a wide variety of leadership positions. Throughout his career, he held senior positions in other governmental bodies and public organizations as well. He was a member of the State Duma, serving as Deputy Chairman of the Committee for Economic Policy, Entrepreneurship and Tourism, from 2000 to 2007.

According to Alexey Likhachev, Rosatom plans to retain its leading role in nuclear power plant construction worldwide, during the decade of 2020 to 2030. The Russian corporation aims to maintain a portfolio of foreign orders in the amount of at least $130 billion per year.

“Several years ago, we assumed the leading role on the global nuclear power plant construction market,” Alexey Likhachev said. “The market is moving, so our share on the market fluctuates between 68 and 72 per cent. I think we will be able to maintain it above 60 per cent at least, this is how we see our goals for the coming decade” (TASS, 13.01.2019).

Since the beginning of the 21st century, with President Vladimir Putin coming into power, the Russian Federation has moved upwards, building a vast nuclear empire spanning South and North America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia. Rosatom is the government corporation behind this enormous expansion, exporting nuclear technology all over the world, thus becoming the world’s leading nuclear powerhouse.

The International Atomic Energy Agency predicts that nuclear power will continue to grow in the next 15 years. The agency’s latest report puts the low margin of growth at 17 per cent and the high at 94 per cent. The Russian Federation is uniquely positioned to capitalize on this projected growth – it has a rich legacy of research and engineering in the field, as well as a history of cooperation with countries on all continents.

The Russian Federation is ensuring its steady presence on almost every single continent through the export of nuclear power projects, expanding its sphere of influence beyond traditional military and hydrocarbon means. Building nuclear power plants is a geopolitical tool, allowing Russia to tie up strategic foreign governments into long-term cooperation. In this way, Russia is demonstrating its prowess by building nuclear rectors across the world (GEOPOLITICAL MONITOR, 17.05.2016).

With these projects, the Russian Federation is gaining a strong foothold on the ground because nuclear power plants require transfer of technological know-how and long-term engagement of scientists, engineers, diplomats. The plants are, in essence, embassies and commerce chambers, which guarantee Russian access to local governments and politicians. Besides, the Russian Federation is opening its universities for students from future nuclear clients and building networks of cadres across the world.

One of the possiblities for Rosatom to reach foreign government agencies and business people is the international ATOMEXPO Forum, a major event in the global nuclear industry. Upon invitation from Rosatom, the 11th forum took place in Sochi, on the 15th and 16th of April 2019. The forum included an exhibition and a convention with an extensive business programme, centred around a plenary discussion. The forum provided a good opportunity for networking and signing partnership agreements. The forum also offered an entertaining cultural programme with possibilities to visit the beautiful Russian seaside resort of Sochi on the Black Sea and the nearby Caucasus mountains.

Seen in this light, Rosatom functions not only as a powerhouse exporting nuclear power plants but also as a corporation of diplomatic and geopolitical importance for Russia.


Olivia Kroth: The journalist and author of four books lives in Moscow.

Her blog: https://olivia2010kroth.wordpress.com

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By 3-to-1, Americans Want Assange Prosecuted

By overwhelming margins, Americans thought that their Government should have an unqualified right to hide from the public, basically, anything it wants to hide.

Eric Zuesse

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Submitted by Eric Zuesse…

A YouGov poll of 2,455 Americans taken on April 11th found that by a margin of 53% to 17%, or by slightly over 3 to 1, Americans want Julian Assange to be prosecuted.

The question was: “Wikileaks founder Julian Assange was arrested in London. Do you think he should or should not be extradited to the US?”

This was a remarkably bipartisan hostility toward Assange. As the YouGov news-report on that finding indicated:

“That majority increases among both Republicans (59% supporting extradition) and Democrats (62% supporting extradition), but decreases to a plurality (46%) among Independents. Independents were more likely to respond with uncertainty (32% saying they don’t know) than Republicans and Democrats, and a little more than one in five Independents (22%) are opposed to extradition.”

During 18-20 November 2018, YouGov had polled Americans on “Do you have a favorable or an unfavorable opinion” on Assange, and separately the same on Wikileaks. On each, Americans were predominantly unfavorable toward Assange by 38% to 20%, and toward Wikileaks by 44% to 29%. Another question in that poll was “Do you support or oppose the prosecution of Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks?” “Support” was 29%. “Oppose” was 19%.

In March 2011, Reuters’s Ipsos polling firm asked 18,829 people in 23 countries“As you may know, the mission of the Wikileaks internet site is to publish copies of confidential government or corporate files and information to the public. Do you support or oppose this type of site that would post such materials?” Globally, there was 74% “Support” and 26% “Oppose.” The lowest support was in U.S.: 29% support versus 61% opposition. (The second-lowest support of Wikileaks was in UK or “Great Britain,” where the opposition to Wikileaks was 38% instead of America’s 61%.) That poll also asked “Would you consider the publishers of the materials” from such a site to be “public service” or “mischief makers” or “criminals” or “heroes” or “other”; and the predominant one of those choices worldwide was “public service,” which was selected by the same percentage of people as the total percentage who had chosen either “mischief makers” or else “criminals” (the second and third preferred options) and it was eight times as many as those who had chosen “heroes.” (NOTE: These latter opinions pertained to the news-media that published information from Wikileaks — not to Wikileaks itself.) However, yet again, in this poll, Americans stood alone for the extremity of their hostility towards a national press that’s not being controlled by the Government (which is what Wikileaks is all about): only one third as large a percentage of Americans as the global percentage chose “public service,” whereas the percentage of Americans who chose “criminals” (42%) was more than three times the global percentage (13%) who chose that. The second-highest to that degree of extreme hostility against a press that’s authentically independent of the government was likewise “Great Britain”: 20%. Canada was the third-highest, at 19%. In other words: the #1 most-hostile nation against democracy was 42% in America, and the next-most-hostile to democracy was 20% in “Great Britain” — less than half as high a percentage of hostility against democracy, as compared to the U.S. percentage; and Canada was only slightly less hostile toward democracy than was the UK.

That same poll also asked: “Wikileaks recently posted thousands of confidential US government diplomatic notes. … Julian Assange, who is responsible for leaking the documents should be viewed as a” — and  49% of Americans said “criminal,” whereas only 17% globally did. (Great Britain was, yet again, on this, the second-highest hostility against democracy, at 26%.) Globally, 29% of all respondents said that Assange had provided a “public service,” but only 11% of Americans said that.

By overwhelming margins, Americans thought that their Government should have an unqualified right to hide from the public, basically, anything it wants to hide. The U.S. Government actually does possess unlimited authority to categorize whatever it wants, as being “Classified.” Overwhelming majorities of the U.S. public approve of this root-principle of dictatorship. Assange is being condemned, fundamentally, because he violates that intrinsic principle (government-secrecy, regardless of how arbitrarily it is imposed), of dictatorship, anywhere.

Clearly, then, the American people were far more favorable toward dictatorship than the public was, in any of the 22 other nations that were sampled.

(NOTE: For the purposes of this article, effective control by the government over the nation’s press is defined as dictatorship, and effective freedom of the press to report any truth — regardless of what the government wants — is defined as democracy. So: the U.S. belongs in the category of a 100% dictatorship, since the Government can classify anything it wishes to.)

An interesting sidelight to these findings, of an extremely pro-dictatorship U.S. public — and with Great Britain being right behind (though not nearly as pro-dictatorship as Americans are) — is that, in 2002 and 2003, the national press in each of those two countries was so strongly controlled by the government as to deceive (via their stenographic ‘news’-media) their respective public into invading Iraq, on the basis of that stenographic reporting by the nation’s press of the government’s lies against Iraq. This is the result of both countries being dictatorships. This is true irrespective of whether Iraq also was.

Further confirmations of the extreme degree of dictatorship in the United States are that it’s the nation which has the world’s highest percentage of its people in prison, and that in the periodic polling by the Gallup organization, the one “institution” that always scores at the very top as being the most highly respected of all institutions in America is “the military.” That is the finding which would reasonably be expected in a total dictatorship.

So: if Assange gets extradited by Great Britain to the United States for prosecution, he will face here not only the most hostile government but the most hostile public. Presumably, this would please the leaderships (even if not the publics) in all U.S.-allied nations, including especially NATO — America’s anti-Russia military alliance, which after 1991 absorbed the entirety of the no-longer-existing Soviet Union’s Warsaw Pact mirror organization which had countered America’s NATO alliance. NATO itself is strongly supported not only by the governments but by the people within the respective member-nations, and polling in June 2014 found that “A little more than half of EU respondents (56%) said it was desirable that the United States exert strong leadership in world affairs.” So, the publics in those nations (at least back in 2014) wanted their own government to continue to be led by the U.S. Government. That was more than a decade after the U.S. Government (and Great Britain) had invaded and destroyed Iraq, on the basis of lies. So: perhaps the public, not only in America but in other countries, learns nothing from experience, and they are perennially suckers of their respective national leaderships. But, in any case, the American public are international standouts for supporting dictatorship — not merely accepting it, but actually endorsing it. Obviously, if Assange is not freed from Great Britain and especially from the U.S., his prospects are exceptionally dismal. His only actual ‘crime’ is having stood up internationally for democracy. If that’s not a “hero,” who is? But perhaps, now, democracy has become a hopeless cause. Perhaps, in the final analysis, Assange’s fate will turn out to have been the fate of democracy, too — the canary in this coal mine.


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.

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House Dems Sign Secret MOUs To Target Trump

An agreement to conspire and coordinate their efforts to attack and investigate President Trump.

Sara Carter

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Via SaraCarter.com:

Chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Elijah Cummings and Financial Services Chairwoman Maxine Waters executed a secret Memorandum of Understanding to “target” President Trump and subpoena all his financial and banking records, according to a letter sent to Cummings from ranking committee member Rep. Jim Jordan.

Further, Jordan’s letter indicates that other MOUs have apparently been signed and agreed to with House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Ca, who has promised to continue investigations into the president despite findings by Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s office that there was no conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russia. Attorney General William Barr released a summary of Mueller’s 400 page report several weeks ago and the redacted version of the report is expected to be released by the DOJ this Thursday.

On Monday, Jordan sent a memorandum explaining his objections to the partisan behavior of Cummings and “unprecedented subpoena to Mazars USA LLP,” as reported by SaraACarter.com.

“We’d describe (the MOUs) as an agreement to conspire and coordinate their efforts to attack and investigate POTUS,” said a congressional official with knowledge of the MOUs.

“This is not how committee’s normally operate. Dems aren’t interested in legislating. Only attacking POTUS.”

Jordan emphatically objected to the secret MOUs and excoriated Democrats who “did not consult with Republican Members of the Committee or allow Members to consider and debate the terms of your MOU before executing the MOU with Chairwoman Waters. You did not disclose the MOU’s existence to Members or the American people until after I raised the matter.”

In the letter Jordan asks Cummings to “provide greater transparency around your secretive conduct.”

Jordan also requested that Cummings answer specific questions about the MOUs.

“If you intend to continue to use the Committee’s limited resources to attack President Trump for political gain, I hope that you will at least be transparent about your actions,” said Jordan at the end of his letter.

“Your ability to function as a fair and unbiased finder of fact is now at grave risk. The Members of the Committee – and, more importantly, the American citizens we represent – deserve to know exactly how you are leading this Committee. I look forward to your detailed answers to these questions.”

Questions for Cummings

  1. How many MOUs with committee chairpersons have you signed as Chairman since the beginning of the 116th Congress?
  2. Would you provide the Committee with a detailed list of the other MOUs you have signed, including their dates, signatories, and topics?
  3. Why did you not publicly disclose that you had signed MOUs with committee chairpersons?
  4. Will you publicly disclose all the MOUs you have signed as Chairman since the beginning of the 116th Congress?
  5. Why did you choose not to consult with any Republican Members before signing these MOUs?
  6. Have you signed any MOUs as Chairman with any entities outside of the House Representatives relating to the Committee’s oversight or legislative work?
  7. To the extent your MOUs create duties for the Committee that conflict with the Rules of the House of Representatives or the Rules of the Committee, which duties prevail?
  8. The Rules of the Committee for the 116th Congress do not authorize the Chairman to bind the Committee through an MOU. Could you explain the specific authority that allows you to bind the Committee through an MOU without first obtaining approval through a vote of the Committee?
  9. As I understand your MOU with Chairwoman Waters, you have committed to sharing Committee information with the Financial Services Committee. This provision of your MOU may conflict with Rules of the House of Representatives and the Committee’s whistleblower protocol, which requires the Committee to keep some Committee information confidential. Will you still protect the confidentiality of whistleblower information notwithstanding your apparent obligation to share it with the Financial Services Committee?
  10. As I understand your MOU with Chairwoman Waters, you have agreed to consult with her before issuing a subpoena. Do you intend to consult with Chairwoman Waters before or after you consult with me, as required by Committee Rules? If I object to your proposed subpoena, do you intend to consult with Chairwoman Waters before or after the Committee votes, as you promised in the Committee’s organizing meeting?
  11. As I understand your MOU with Chairwoman Waters, you have declined to include any provision protecting the Minority’s rights to documentary or testimonial information. Can you guarantee that Minority Members will have the same access to documentary or testimonial information under this MOU as we do in every other Committee inquiry?

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