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2 possible outcomes of Trump’s attack on Syria

Trump can either become the next Bush/Obama or the next Reagan, either way he has lost his anti-interventionist base.

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In the aftermath of Donald Trump’s war crime against Syria, two crucial questions have emerged and there is not yet a definitive answer to either. Still, it is necessary to explore the possibilities.

1. There is more to come: Bush/Obama 2.0

Trump’s missile attack on Sharyat may be the first of things to come. Rex Tillerson may have indeed subtly alluded to this when he told reporters prior to the attack that “…steps are underway” to prepare for regime change in Syria.

This would almost certainly mean full on air and possibly also ground war in a style reminiscent either to America’s 2003 war on Iraq or the 2011 NATO war on Libya.

The major difference between Syria now and Iraq and Libya then is that a nuclear superpower, Russia has air-craft, missile defence systems and troops in Syria. Iraq and Libya by contrast were materially isolated from potential and actual allies.

Russia is responding in a predictable way. Russia is not going to attack forces of the United States in a deliberate retaliation, but nor is Russia going to abandon Syria. Instead they will increase their presence in Syria in respect of both men and military hardware. As The Duran’s Alexander Mercouris explains, such moves were all ready underway and this will of course only strengthen the resolve for Russia to stay the course.

This will perhaps make America think twice before going full ‘shock and awe’ in Syria, but because of the tense geo-political atmosphere what was once a certainty is now a mere probability and now as strong a probability as many would like.

Even if Trump and the Pentagon wanted to press the pause button, mission creep could dictate otherwise and move events beyond the initial intentions of the deep state.

This would of course be the worst case scenario. Even though Russia is averse to escalating geo-political conflicts, all countries have their threshold of tolerance. The fact that Russia’s threshold is set very high, would at a certain stage become inconsequential if America is hell bent on war between super-powers, which some in Washington appear to be.

2. Isolated Illegal Bravado: Reagan Redux 

On 15 April 1986, American jets bombed Libya in a reprisal for the West Berlin discotheque bombings earlier that month for which Libya was blamed, in spite of no trials over the matter taking place until 1996.

America’s air attack on Libya killed approximately 75 people including civilians.

Libya claimed a moral victory however, because in spite of the deaths and damage to Libyan military hardware, including 14 MiG-23 aircraft, Gaddafi had survived the attack. It was received wisdom both in Libya and in much of the western press, that Gaddafi was the target of the strikes.

Gaddafi’s bombed out house in Bab al-Aziziya became a monument to Libyan resistance to American aggression.

RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / LIBYAN TV" - NO MARKETING NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS An image grab taken from footage broadcast on Libyan state television on February 22, 2011 shows Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi (bottom, back) delivering a nationwide address at his former Bab al-Aziziya residence, which was bombed in 1986 by the US aircraft. Kadhafi says he will stay in Libya as head of revolution as world powers mobilised to try to halt the bloody showdown between protesters and his security forces suspected of "crimes against humanity" to keep him in power. AFP PHOTO/LIBYAN TV (Photo credit should read -/AFP/Getty Images)

The monument became the site of Gaddafi’s final public speech before his execution at the hands of NATO backed insurgents.

Unlike George W. Bush and Barack Obama, Ronald Reagan didn’t dig in. He bombed and left. He didn’t kill his nemesis Gaddafi, but he still got to go in front of the television cameras and present himself as a war leader in the eyes of the US public.

Although Trump’s ‘face the nation as a war leader’ moment was decidedly less self-assured than Reagan’s polished Hollywood style presentation, it may have served a similar purpose. If anything this could indicate that Trump didn’t have his heart in the illegal attack on Syria the way Reagan apparently did in respect of Libya.

What’s more is that, the strike was materially ineffective.

Sharyat air base is now back in operation  and the majority of the Tomahawk missiles fired at Syria did not hit the intended target.

A war crime is a war crime in any case, but the fact is that this was an inefficient and broadly materially ineffective war crime. Whether this was by mistake or by design will only be known in the future.

Fewer and fewer people are buying the lie that Assad used chemical weapons on his own people. Even the stridently anti-Assad Israeli press are careful to refer to the attack as ‘alleged’ while the European and American mainstream press speak with certainty, in spite of the absence of any investigation and clear logical and empirical evidence which points to the contrary.

Perhaps the rush to attack was motivated by the fact that the justification for striking Syria was so flimsy that the powers that be did not want to give the public, let alone the more sceptical members of Congress, time to catch up with the facts?

Whether or not Trump continues to attack Syria, the fact remains that he achieved many if not most of domestic goals.

–Russiagate will certainly fade into the background as Trump has attacked a Russian partner fighting a war beside Russia forces. He can’t be accused of being a ‘Putin agent’ now.

–Trump has placated the pro-war deep state.

–Trump has placated European NATO members who want America to lead the war charge.

–The mainstream media have suddenly gone from enemy to friend. 

Whether this is enough for Trump or not depends on how much more the deep state wants.

Almost as crucially, it will depend on Trump’s personal, Machiavellian definition of that infamous phrase, ‘Mission Accomplished’.

mission

 

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Putin, Trump meet in Helsinki for first bilateral summit

The Helsinki summit is the first ever full-fledged meeting between Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump. Their previous encounters were brief talks on the sidelines of the G20 and APEC summits in 2017.

Vladimir Rodzianko

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Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Donald Trump are meeting in the Finnish capital of Helsinki for their first bilateral one-on-one meeting.

Trump arrived in the Finland capital a day early, while the jet of Putin, who wrapped up his nation’s hosting of the World Cup Sunday, touched down around 1 p.m. local time and the Russian president’s motorcade whisked him straight to the palace where the two world leaders are meeting.

Trump signed an August 2017 law imposing additional sanctions on Russia. The law bars Trump from easing many sanctions without Congress’ approval, but he can offer some relief without a nod from Congress.

Almost 700 Russian people and companies are under U.S. sanctions. Individuals face limits on their travel and freezes on at least some of their assets, while some top Russian state banks and companies, including oil and gas giants, are effectively barred from getting financing through U.S. banks and markets.

The agenda of the summit hasn’t been officially announced yet, though, the presidents are expected to discuss global crises, such as the Syrian conflict and Ukraine, as well as bilateral relations.

Stay tuned for updates…

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“Foreign entity, NOT RUSSIA” hacked Hillary Clinton’s emails (Video)

Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Tx): Hillary Clinton’s cache of 30,000 emails was hacked by foreign actor, and it was not Russia.

Alex Christoforou

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A stunning revelation that hardly anyone in the mainstream media is covering.

Fox News gave Louie Gohmert (R-Tx) the opportunity to explain what was going on during his questioning of Peter Strzok, when the the Texas Congressman stated that a “foreign entity, NOT RUSSIA” hacked Hillary Clinton’s emails.

Aside from this segment on Fox News, this story is not getting any coverage, and we know why. It destroys the entire ‘Russia hacked Hillary’ narrative.

Gohmert states that this evidence is irrefutable and shows that a foreign actor, not connected to Russia in any way, intercepted and distributed Hillary Clinton’s cache of 30,000 emails.

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Via Zerohedge

As we sift through the ashes of Thursday’s dumpster-fire Congressional hearing with still employed FBI agent Peter Strzok, Luke Rosiak of the Daily Caller plucked out a key exchange between Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Tx) and Strzok which revealed a yet-unknown bombshell about the Clinton email case.

Nearly all of Hillary Clinton’s emails on her homebrew server went to a foreign entity that isn’t Russia. When this was discovered by the Intelligence Community Inspector General (ICIG), IG Chuck McCullough sent his investigator Frank Ruckner and an attorney to notify Strzok along with three other people about the “anomaly.”

Four separate attempts were also made to notify DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz to brief him on the massive security breach, however Horowitz “never returned the call.” Recall that Horowitz concluded last month that despite Strzok’s extreme bias towards Hillary Clinton and against Donald Trump – none of it translated to Strzok’s work at the FBI.

In other words; Strzok, while investigating Clinton’s email server, completely ignored the fact that most of Clinton’s emails were sent to a foreign entity – while IG Horowitz simply didn’t want to know about it.

Daily Caller reports…

The Intelligence Community Inspector General (ICIG) found an “anomaly on Hillary Clinton’s emails going through their private server, and when they had done the forensic analysis, they found that her emails, every single one except four, over 30,000, were going to an address that was not on the distribution list,” Republican Rep. Louie Gohmert of Texas said during a hearing with FBI official Peter Strzok.

Gohmert continued..

“It was going to an unauthorized source that was a foreign entity unrelated to Russia.”

Strzok admitted to meeting with Ruckner but said he couldn’t remember the “specific” content of their discussion.

“The forensic examination was done by the ICIG and they can document that,” Gohmert said, “but you were given that information and you did nothing with it.”

According to Zerohedge “Mr. Horowitz got a call four times from someone wanting to brief him about this, and he never returned the call,” Gohmert said – and Horowitz wouldn’t return the call.

And while Peter Strzok couldn’t remember the specifics of his meeting with the IG about the giant “foreign entity” bombshell, he texted this to his mistress Lisa Page when the IG discovered the “(C)” classification on several of Clinton’s emails – something the FBI overlooked:

“Holy cow … if the FBI missed this, what else was missed? … Remind me to tell you to flag for Andy [redacted] emails we (actually ICIG) found that have portion marks (C) on a couple of paras. DoJ was Very Concerned about this.”

Via Zerohedge

In November of 2017, IG McCullough – an Obama appointee – revealed to Fox News that he received pushback when he tried to tell former DNI James Clapper about the foreign entity which had Clinton’s emails and other anomalies.

Instead of being embraced for trying to expose an illegal act, seven senators including Dianne Feinstein (D-Ca) wrote a letter accusing him of politicizing the issue.

“It’s absolutely irrelevant whether something is marked classified, it is the character of the information,” he said. Fox News reports…

McCullough said that from that point forward, he received only criticism and an “adversarial posture” from Congress when he tried to rectify the situation.

“I expected to be embraced and protected,” he said, adding that a Hill staffer “chided” him for failing to consider the “political consequences” of the information he was blowing the whistle on.

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Donald Trump plays good cop and bad cop with a weak Theresa May (Video)

The Duran – News in Review – Episode 55.

Alex Christoforou

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US President Donald Trump’s state visit to the UK was momentous, not for its substance, but rather for its sheer entertainment value.

Trump started his trip to the United Kingdom blasting Theresa May for her inability to negotiate a proper Brexit deal with the EU.  Trump ended his visit holding hands with the UK Prime Minister during a press conference where the most ‘special relationship’ between the two allies was once again reaffirmed.

Protests saw giant Trump “baby balloons” fly over London’s city center, as Trump played was his own good cop and bad cop to the UK PM, outside London at the Chequers…often times leaving May’s head spinning.

Even as Trump has left London, he remains front and center in the mind of Theresa May, who has now stated that Trump advised her to “sue” the European Union to resolve the tense negotiations over Brexit.

Trump had mentioned to reporters on Friday at a joint press conference with Theresa May that he had given the British leader a suggestion that she found too “brutal.”

Asked Sunday on the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show what that suggestion was, May: “He told me I should sue the EU. Not go into negotiation, sue them.” May added…

“What the president also said at that press conference was `Don’t walk away. Don’t walk away from the negotiations. Then you’re stuck.”‘

The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris summarize what was a state visit like no other, as Trump trolled the UK PM from beginning to end, and left London knowing that he got the better of a weakened British Prime Minister, who may not survive in office past next week.

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Via CNBC

It wasn’t exactly clear what Trump meant. The revelation came after explosive and undiplomatic remarks Trump made this week about May’s leadership — especially her handling of the Brexit negotiations — as he made his first official visit to Britain.

In an interview with The Sun newspaper published Thursday — just as May was hosting Trump at a lavish black-tie dinner — Trump said the British leader’s approach likely “killed” chances of a free-trade deal with the United States. He said he had told May how to conduct Brexit negotiations, “but she didn’t listen to me.”

He also praised May’s rival, Boris Johnson, who quit last week as foreign secretary to protest May’s Brexit plans. Trump claimed Johnson would make a “great prime minister.”

The comments shocked many in Britain — even May’s opponents — and threatened to undermine May’s already fragile hold on power. Her Conservative government is deeply split between supporters of a clean break with the EU and those who want to keep close ties with the bloc, Britain’s biggest trading partner.

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