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Forget Gene Sharp, John Carlarne is the new Color Revolution Chief

Long thought of as being the ‘godfather’ of Color Revolutions, elderly Gene Sharp is stepping aside in favor of a much younger spiritual successor, John Carlarne.

Andrew Korybko

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Color Revolutions are the epitome of post-modern warfare, and they’ve been successfully applied to devastating effect everywhere from Serbia to Syria. Whether as stand-alone regime change operations such as the one in 2003 Georgia or the catalyst to a Hybrid War like in 2011 Libya, Color Revolutions have arguably emerged as one of the US’ preferred strategies of choice in destabilizing targeted states.

The architect behind this new method of warfare is Gene Sharp, an expert in “non-violent resistance” strategies and the founder of the “Albert Einstein Institution”. He’s published such works as “From Dictatorship To Democracy” and “There Are Realistic Alternatives”, both of which have been instrumental in honing Color Revolution organizational strategies and applied tactics. Largely credited with sparking the “Arab Spring” theater-wide Color Revolutions, Sharp is a ‘god among men’ when it comes to asymmetrical warfare methods, but his elderly age means that someone else must pick up the torch and continue his work once he inevitably passes away.

A New Leader Rises

Enter John Carlarne, an up-and-coming Color Revolution strategist from The Ohio State University’s Mershon Center for International Security Studies. His publicly available CV indicates that he has a wealth of experience that’s particularly relevant for this field. From serving around the world as a Commissioned Officer in the British Army from 1990-1995 to being the Vice-President of the Peace Brigades International (PBI) from 1997 to the present, Carlarne has been able to combine his military training with broad NGO activity in spearheading the new tactic of “protective accompaniment”.

PBI describes this concept as “send[ing] teams of volunteers backed up by an international support network to accompany human rights defenders and communities in areas of conflict”, which basically boils down to using Western “volunteers” as literal human shields in protecting “democracy” and “human rights” (Color Revolution) activists during their provocations. Undoubtedly, Carlarne’s military experience helped to optimize this strategy while his leadership role as the organization’s Vice-President ensured that it would be rolled out, tested, and perfected in all of the countries where the group is active.

PBI’s activity in identity-diverse countries such as Kenya and Nepal dovetails nicely with Carlarne’s educational interest in Anthropology, in which he received both a master’s degree (1996) and a Ph.D. (2008). During his two-year time as the Associate Director of the University of South Carolina’s Rule of Law Collaborative from 2009-2011, some of his self-declared responsibilities included “liaising with government, academic, practitioner and policy maker communities – both in the US and in Europe” and “advising government officials on working with nongovernmental organizations in post-conflict settings”, both of which clearly gave him an impressive list of professional contacts that he would later leverage.

Crafting The Color Revolution

Right after serving at the Rule of Law Collaborative, Carlarne became the Peace Studies Coordinator at The Ohio State University in 2011, a position that he retains to this day alongside his Vice-Presidential one with the PBI. The Mershon Center describes a research project that Carlarne is leading called “Training To Talk Peace: Experimental Analysis Of Non-Violent Communication Workshops”, which utilizes local diaspora communities to “act as a proxy for populations in their countries of origin” in assessing the effect that an extensive six-week “non-violent communication curriculum” has on the participants’ “identity structure, interpersonal reactivity, and views on the use of coercive or punitive methods in a divisive political dispute.”

The purpose of the experiment is to gauge the effectiveness of Color Revolution information campaigns in recruiting regime change cells inside of the targeted country and in magnifying the sense of identity-separateness that varied demographics feel towards the said diverse state. To put it in a simpler way, Carlarne tests the applicability of fomenting identity conflict all across the world, likely in accordance with “The Law Of Hybrid War” which states that “the grand objective behind every Hybrid War is to disrupt multipolar transnational connective projects through externally provoked identity conflicts (ethnic, religious, regional, political, etc.) within a targeted transit state.”

His anthropological expertise is then harnessed in judging whether the experiment’s results indicate that a given strategy should move forward, and if such a determination is made, then the PBI begins in-field testing against the target. Although the PBI’s front page says that it only has “current field projects in Colombia, Guatemala, Honduras, Indonesia, Kenya, Mexico and Nepal”, its section about Country Groups notes that “many countries do not have an official PBI Country Group but have small networks of individuals that may be able to help.” To elaborate, one of the key functions of a Country Group “is developing and activating support networks that provide a vital lifeline if the human rights defenders PBI accompanies are threatened”, which “consists of high-level contacts such as diplomats, members of government, and officials, and well-known personalities.”

If the Country Group’s responsibilities make it sound an awful lot like an intelligence agency, it’s because it essentially is, and it’s reasonable to conclude that the PBI might actually be a CIA front organization. Carlarne’s extensive contacts “with government, academic, practitioner and policy maker communities – both in the US and in Europe” and the government officials that he has formerly advised enable him to provide a wide range of relevant policy influencers and decision makers with the results of his field data, thus establishing a valuable Color Revolution feedback mechanism that seamlessly integrates theoreticians, practitioners, and policy makers. Carlarne’s multi-layered regime change platform surpasses the precedent that was set by Gene Sharp and demonstrates how academia, private sector “volunteers”, and government agencies can all be fused together in an effective operational mix.

Training The Next Generation

Carlarne’s activities are also very forward-looking, not just in the sense of fomenting Color Revolutions and Hybrid Wars in targeted states, but in training a new generation of strategists to join his PBI organization and/or the American Intelligence Community. He presently teaches a class at The Ohio State University called “Applied Nonviolence”, where he writes that students “will select candidate countries for nonviolent transition” and “then apply the principles, concepts and practices of nonviolence within a notional setting in order to explore the strengths and limitations of nonviolence as a method for effecting long‐term change within specific regimes.”

This program amounts to a series of targeted simulations in which Carlarne uses students as unwitting research assistants for his work while simultaneously seeking to indoctrinate future recruits with his Color Revolution ideology. He’s currently building the “Peace Education And Training Repository” (PETR), “an online data portal designed to document peace education training curricula and materials from around the world” and which “combines information about global research, education, and peace-building programs that affect community, national and international peace and security.”

The end vision is that “the repository will form the core resource for lifelong peace leadership education”, with one of the key objectives being to “attract participation from practitioners, researchers and policy makers alike”. In other words, Carlarne is constructing a Color Revolution factory that aims to continually produce strategists, activists, and policy facilitators in order to dish out a never-ending stream of “democratic” and “human rights” destabilization anywhere in the world. Needless to say, PETR is on track to become the new-and-improved version of the “Albert Einstein Institute”, and John Carlarne is already a lot more successful than Gene Sharp ever was in directly cultivating Color Revolution networks, fielding experimental techniques in practice, and coordinating his activities with the military-intelligence community.

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Foreign Banks Are Embracing Russia’s Alternative To SWIFT, Moscow Says

Given its status as a major energy exporter, Russia has leverage that could help attract partners to its new SWIFT alternative.

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Via Zerohedge


On Friday, one day after Russia and China pledged to reduce their reliance on the dollar by increasing the amount of bilateral trade conducted in rubles and yuan (a goal toward which much progress has already been made over the past three years), Russia’s Central Bank provided the latest update on Moscow’s alternative to US-dominated international payments network SWIFT.

Moscow started working on the project back in 2014, when international sanctions over Russia’s annexation of Crimea inspired fears that the country’s largest banks would soon be cut off from SWIFT which, though it’s based in Belgium and claims to be politically neutral, is effectively controlled by the US Treasury.

Today, the Russian alternative, known as the System for Transfer of Financial Messages, has attracted a modest amount of support within the Russian business community, with 416 Russian companies having joined as of September, including the Russian Federal Treasury and large state corporations likeGazprom Neft and Rosneft.

And now, eight months after a senior Russian official advised that “our banks are ready to turn off SWIFT,” it appears the system has reached another milestone in its development: It’s ready to take on international partners in the quest to de-dollarize and end the US’s leverage over the international financial system. A Russian official advised that non-residents will begin joining the system “this year,” according to RT.

“Non-residents will start connecting to us this year. People are already turning to us,”said First Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Russia Olga Skorobogatova. Earlier, the official said that by using the alternative payment system foreign firms would be able to do business with sanctioned Russian companies.

Turkey, China, India and others are among the countries that might be interested in a SWIFT alternative, as Russian President Vladimir Putin pointed out in a speech earlier this month, the US’s willingness to blithely sanction countries from Iran to Venezuela and beyond will eventually rebound on the US economy by undermining the dollar’s status as the world’s reserve currency.

To be sure, the Russians aren’t the only ones building a SWIFT alternative to help avoid US sanctions. Russia and China, along with the European Union are launching an interbank payments network known as the Special Purpose Vehicle to help companies pursue “legitimate business with Iran” in defiance of US sanctions.

Given its status as a major energy exporter, Russia has leverage that could help attract partners to its new SWIFT alternative. For one, much of Europe is dependent on Russian natural gas and oil.

And as Russian trade with other US rivals increases, Moscow’s payments network will look increasingly attractive,particularly if buyers of Russian crude have no other alternatives to pay for their goods.

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US leaving INF will put nuclear non-proliferation at risk & may lead to ‘complete chaos’

The US is pulling out of a nuclear missile pact with Russia. The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty requires both countries to eliminate their short and medium-range atomic missiles.

The Duran

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Via RT


If the US ditches the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), it could collapse the entire nuclear non-proliferation system, and bring nuclear war even closer, Russian officials warn.

By ending the INF, Washington risks creating a domino effect which could endanger other landmark deals like the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) and collapse the existing non-proliferation mechanism as we know it, senior lawmaker Konstantin Kosachev said on Sunday.

The current iteration of the START treaty, which limits the deployment of all types of nuclear weapons, is due to expire in 2021. Kosachev, who chairs the Parliament’s Upper House Foreign Affairs Committee, warned that such an outcome pits mankind against “complete chaos in terms of nuclear weapons.”

“Now the US Western allies face a choice: either embarking on the same path, possibly leading to new war, or siding with common sense, at least for the sake of their self-preservation instinct.”

His remarks came after US President Donald Trump announced his intentions to “terminate” the INF, citing alleged violations of the deal by Russia.

Moscow has repeatedly denied undermining the treaty, pointing out that Trump has failed to produce any evidence of violations. Moreover, Russian officials insist that the deployment of US-made Mk 41 ground-based universal launching systems in Europe actually violates the agreement since the launchers are capable of firing mid-range cruise missiles.

Leonid Slutsky, who leads the Foreign Affairs Committee in parliament’s lower chamber, argued that Trump’s words are akin to placing “a huge mine under the whole disarmament process on the planet.”

The INF Treaty was signed in 1987 by then-President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev. The deal effectively bans the parties from having and developing short- and mid-range missiles of all types. According to the provisions, the US was obliged to destroy Pershing I and II launcher systems and BGM-109G Gryphon ground-launched cruise missiles. Moscow, meanwhile, pledged to remove the SS-20 and several other types of missiles from its nuclear arsenal.

Pershing missiles stationed in the US Army arsenal. © Hulton Archive / Getty Images ©

By scrapping the historic accord, Washington is trying to fulfill its “dream of a unipolar world,” a source within the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

“This decision fits into the US policy of ditching the international agreements which impose equal obligations on it and its partners, and render the ‘exceptionalism’ concept vulnerable.”

Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov denounced Trump’s threats as “blackmail” and said that Washington wants to dismantle the INF because it views the deal as a “problem” on its course for “total domination” in the military sphere.

The issue of nuclear arms treaties is too vital for national and global security to rush into hastily-made “emotional” decisions, the official explained. Russia is expecting to hear more on the US’ plans from Trump’s top security adviser, John Bolton, who is set to hold talks in Moscow tomorrow.

President Trump has been open about unilaterally pulling the US out of various international agreements if he deems them to be damaging to national interests. Earlier this year, Washington withdrew from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) on the Iranian nuclear program. All other signatories to the landmark agreement, including Russia, China, and the EU, decided to stick to the deal, while blasting Trump for leaving.

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Converting Khashoggi into Cash

After two weeks of denying any connection to Khashoggi’s disappearance, Riyadh has admitted that he was killed by Saudi operatives but it wasn’t really on purpose.

Jim Jatras

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Authored by James George Jatras via The Strategic Culture Foundation:


The hazard of writing about the Saudis’ absurd gyrations as they seek to avoid blame for the murder of the late, not notably great journalist and Muslim Brotherhood activist Jamal Khashoggi is that by the time a sentence is finished, the landscape may have changed again.

As though right on cue, the narrative has just taken another sharp turn.

After two weeks of denying any connection to Khashoggi’s disappearance, Riyadh has ‘fessed up (sorta) and admitted that he was killed by Saudi operatives but it wasn’t really on purpose:

Y’see, it was kinda’f an ‘accident.’

Oops…

Y’see the guys were arguing, and … uh … a fistfight broke out.

Yeah, that’s it … a ‘fistfight.’

And before you know it poor Jamal had gone all to pieces.

Y’see?

Must’ve been a helluva fistfight.

The figurative digital ink wasn’t even dry on that whopper before American politicos in both parties were calling it out:

  • “To say that I am skeptical of the new Saudi narrative about Mr. Khashoggi is an understatement,” tweeted Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina. “First we were told Mr. Khashoggi supposedly left the consulate and there was blanket denial of any Saudi involvement. Now, a fight breaks out and he’s killed in the consulate, all without knowledge of Crown Prince. It’s hard to find this latest ‘explanation‘ as credible.”
  • California Rep. Adam Schiff, the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, said in a statement that the new Saudi explanation is “not credible.” “If Khashoggi was fighting inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, he was fighting for his life with people sent to capture or kill him,” Schiff said. “The kingdom and all involved in this brutal murder must be held accountable, and if the Trump administration will not take the lead, Congress must.”

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan must think he’s already died and gone to his eternal recreation in the amorous embraces of the dark-eyed houris. The acid test for the viability of Riyadh’s newest transparent lie is whether the Turks actually have, as they claim, live recordings of Khashoggi’s interrogation, torture, murder, and dismemberment (not necessarily in that order) – and if they do, when Erdogan decides it’s the right time to release them.

Erdogan has got the Saudis over a barrel and he’ll squeeze everything he can out of them.

From the beginning, the Khashoggi story wasn’t really about the fate of one man. The Saudis have been getting away with bloody murder, literally, for years. They’re daily slaughtering the civilian population of Yemen with American and British help, with barely a ho-hum from the sensitive consciences always ready to invoke the so-called “responsibility to protect” Muslims in Bosnia, Kosovo, Libya, Syria, Xinjiang, Rakhine, and so forth.

Where’s the responsibility not to help a crazed bunch of Wahhabist head-choppers kill people?

But now, just one guy meets a grisly end and suddenly it’s the most important homicide since the Lindbergh baby.

What gives?

Is it because Khashoggi was part of the MSM aristocracy, on account of his relationship with the Washington Post?

Was it because of his other, darker, connections? As related by Moon of Alabama: “Khashoggi was a rather shady guy. A ‘journalist’ who was also an operator for Saudi and U.S. intelligence services. He was an early recruit of the Muslim Brotherhood.” This relationship, writes MoA, touches on the interests of pretty much everyone in the region:

“The Ottoman empire ruled over much of the Arab world. The neo-Ottoman wannabe-Sultan Recep Tayyip Erdogan would like to regain that historic position for Turkey. His main competition in this are the al-Sauds. They have much more money and are strategically aligned with Israel and the United States, while Turkey under Erdogan is more or less isolated. The religious-political element of the competition is represented on one side by the Muslim Brotherhood, ‘democratic’ Islamists to which Erdogan belongs, and the Wahhabi absolutists on the other side.”

With the noose tightening around Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman (MbS), the risible fistfight cock-and-bull story is likely to be the best they can come up with. US President Donald Trump’s having offered his “rogue killers” opening suggests he’s willing to play along. Nobody will really be fooled, but MbS will hope he can persuade important people to pretend they are fooled.

That will mean spreading around a lot of cash. The new alchemy of converting Khashoggi dead into financial gain for the living is just one part of an obvious scheme to pull off what Libya’s Muammar Kaddafi managed after the 1988 Lockerbie bombing: offer up some underlings as the fall guys and let the top man evade responsibility. (KARMA ALERT: That didn’t do Kaddafi any good in the long run.)

In the Saudi case the Lockerbie dodge will be harder, as there are already pictures of men at the Istanbul Consulate General identified as close associates of MbS. But they’ll give it the old madrasa try anyway since it’s all they’ve got.Firings and arrests have started and one suspect has already died in a suspicious automobile “accident.” Heads will roll!

Saving MbS’s skin and his succession to the throne of his doddering father may depend on how many of the usual recipients of Saudi – let’s be honest – bribery and influence peddling will find sufficient pecuniary reason to go along. Saudi Arabia’s unofficial motto with respect to the US establishment might as well be: “The green poultice heals all wounds.”

Anyway, that’s been their experience up to now, but it also in part reflects the same arrogance that made MbS think he could continue to get away with anything. (It’s not shooting someone in the middle of Fifth Avenue, but it’s close.) Whether spreading cash around will continue to have the same salubrious effect it always has had in the past remains to be seen.

To be sure, Trump may succeed in shaking the Saudi date palm for additional billions for arms sales. That won’t necessarily turn around an image problem that may not have a remedy. But still, count on more cash going to high-price lobbying and image-control shops eager to make obscene money working for their obscene client. Some big American names are dropping are dropping Riyadh in a sudden fit of fastidiousness, but you can bet others will be eager to step into their Guccis, both in the US and in the United Kingdom. (It should never be forgotten how closely linked the US and UK establishments are in the Middle East, and to the Saudis in particular.)

It still might not work though. No matter how much expensive PR lipstick the spinmeisters put on this pig, that won’t make it kissable. It’s still a pig.

Others benefitting from hanging Khashoggi’s death around MbS’s neck are:

  • Qatar (after last year’s invasion scare, there’s no doubt a bit of Schadenfreude and (figurative) champagne corks popping in Doha over MbS’s discomfiture. As one source close to the ruling al-Thani family relates, “The Qataris are stunned speechless at Saudi incompetence!” You just can’t get good help these days).

Among the losers one must count Israel and especially Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu. MbS, with his contrived image as the reformer, was the Sunni “beard” he needed to get the US to assemble an “Arab NATO” (as though one NATO weren’t bad enough!) and eliminate Iran for him. It remains to be seen how far that agenda has been set back.

Whether or not MbS survives or is removed – perhaps with extreme prejudice – there’s no doubt Saudi Arabia is the big loser. Question are being asked that should have been asked years ago. As Srdja Trifkovic comments in Chronicles magazine:

“The crown prince’s recklessness in ordering the murder of Khashoggi has demonstrated that he is just a standard despot, a Mafia don with oil presiding over an extended cleptocracy of inbred parasites. The KSA will not be reformed because it is structurally not capable of reform. The regime in Riyadh which stops being a playground of great wealth, protected by a large investment in theocratic excess, would not be ‘Saudi’ any longer. Saudia delenda est.”

The first Saudi state, the Emirate of Diriyah, went belly up in 1818, with the death of head of the house of al-Saud, Abdullah bin Saud – actually, literally with his head hung on a gate in Constantinople by Erdogan’s Ottoman predecessor, Sultan Mahmud II.

The second Saudi state, Emirate of Nejd, likewise folded in 1891.

It’s long past time this third and current abomination joined its antecedents on the ash heap of history.

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