Information Clearing House 18 December 2013: Did Someone Say “Crash”?

18 December 2013 — Information Clearing House

China vs US ‘Sea-to-shining-sea’
By Pepe Escobar
The paper spelt it loudly; “If the American navy and air force always encroach near China’s doorstep, confrontation is bound to take place.”

Al-Jaafari: Terrorists Supported by Saudi, Qatari Intelligence Committed Massacres in Adra
Syria’s Permanent Representative to the UN, shared details on the crimes committed in Adra, saying that these mercenaries came to Syria under the support and funding of Saudi, Qatari and Turkish intelligence agencies and committed massacres against civilians in Adra.
Patrick Cockburn: U.S. Turns Blind Eye as Saudis Fund Jihadists in Syrian Conflict
You know, it is one of the most extraordinary aspects of the turmoil in the Middle East that the Saudi backing for extreme Sunni organizations, for jihadi organizations, isn’t opposed by the U.S. more vigorously.
Let Saudi Arabia Go It Alone
By Dr. Ludwig Watzal
The Saudis know that threatening to “go it alone” will be rightly seen as a bluff. The Saudi military has no experience in warfare and is entirely dependent on weaponry and spare parts, mostly from the West.
Mandela is Gone, but Apartheid is Alive and Well in Australia
By John Pilger
Australians are rarely confronted with their nation’s dirtiest secret.
The Legend of the Phoenix
By Todd E. Pierce
The Phoenix Program is usually referred to as an assassination program and was the subject of investigation by the Senate’s “Church Committee.”
Almost Orwellian”: US Judge Indicts NSA Spying
By Bill Van Auken
The US government is guilty of methods appropriate to a police state.
Under Amazon’s CIA Cloud: The Washington Post
By Norman Solomon
The owner of the Washington Post is now doing big business with the Central Intelligence Agency, while readers of the newspaper’s CIA coverage are left in the dark.
60 Sickening Minutes
NSA Saved Us From Chinese Dr. Evil BIOS Plot to Brick all PCs
By Darlene Storm
“The NSA foiled a major plot, trust us.” But of course, there is no reason we should trust them.
Did Someone Say “Crash”?
By Mike Whitney
Stocks have had an impressive  4-year run, but there are signs that the day of reckoning is fast approaching.
500 reported killed in South Sudan; U.S. orders citizens to leave:
At least 500 people, most of them soldiers, have been killed in South Sudan since Sunday, a senior government official said as an ethnic rivalry threatened to tear apart the world’s newest country.
Congo: At least 22 killed in Brazzaville clashes:
At least 22 people were killed when security forces raided the house of Republic of Congo’s former deputy intelligence chief and clashed with his security guards, a morgue official said.
‘Syrian and Somali doctors’ shot dead near Mogadishu:
Three Syrian doctors and their Somali colleague have been shot dead in an ambush near Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu, witnesses have told the BBC.
President Morsi faces Egypt terrorism charges:
President Mohammed Morsi is to stand trial on charges including conspiring with foreign organisations to commit terrorist acts. Prosecutors said Mr Morsi had formed an alliance with the Palestinian militant group Hamas and Lebanon’s Hezbollah.
Aleppo bomb raids leave 135 dead: Activists say:
Regime warplanes pounded Syria’s second city Aleppo for a fourth straight day today in air raids that have killed at least 135 people, many of them children, a monitor said.
Russia condemns Adra massacre, calls on world community to react:
Russia’s Foreign Ministry has condemned massacre in the town of Adra, 20 kilometers north of Damascus. Survivors say jihadist rebel groups executed dozens of civilians, including children, beheading them or burning them alive.
West signals to Syrian opposition Assad may stay:
Western nations have indicated to the Syrian opposition that peace talks next month may not lead to the removal of President Bashar al-Assad and that his Alawite minority will remain key in any transitional administration, opposition sources said.
US and Russia consider Syria peace plan that leaves Assad in power:
Western nations have confirmed the Syrian opposition’s worst fears by indicating that peace talks next month may not lead to the removal of President Bashar al-Assad, and that his Alawite minority will remain key in any transitional administration, opposition sources told Reuters.
Saudi Arabia warns it will act against West’s policy in Middle East:
Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to London has claimed the country is determined to independently arm Syria rebels after rejecting the diplomatic tactics of its Western allies
At Least 13 Killed In Attacks In Iraq:
Outside the city of Samarra, 95 kilometers north of Baghdad, gunmen opened fire on a bus carrying Pakistani Shi’ite pilgrims, killing three Pakistanis and two Iraqis, and wounding 12.
3 Iran Guards ‘killed in Sistan Baluchistan blast’:
Three members of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards have been killed by a bomb blast in the south-eastern province of Sistan Baluchistan, local media report. The men were part of an engineering division and had been working on construction projects near the city of Saravan, the Tasnim news agency said.
Hollande: US Senate will ‘squash’ Iran if it evades talks:
French president reiterates his commitment to preventing Islamic Republic from obtaining nukes; pledges support for Israeli-Palestinian progress
Iran Sanctions Bill Is ‘Coming,’ Kirk Says:
Kirk said that the timing of a bill rollout and any consideration in the Senate will be up to his top Democratic partner on sanctions, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Robert Menendez of New Jersey, and of course Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.
Palestinians: Kerry taking Israel’s side, no longer neutral mediator:
Senior Palestinian sources are blaming the Obama administration for favoring the Israeli positions in the peace talks, claiming that this is compensation to Israel for the U.S. position in the Iran negotiations and blaming Washington’s stance for causing a crisis in the process here.
4 militants killed, 23 arrested in Afghan raids: gov’t:
Four militants were killed and 23 others detained in military operations across Afghanistan since early Tuesday, the country’s Interior Ministry said on Wednesday morning.
3 killed in Taliban attack on US base:
At least three people were killed early Wednesday morning as Afghan Taliban insurgent group launched a complex attack on a U.S. forces’ supply base in eastern province of Nangarhar, the second attack on the same base in two months, sources said.
5 Soldiers Killed, 34 Injured in Pakistan Suicide Blast:
At least five soldiers were killed and 34 others injured today when a suicide bomber rammed a explosive-laden car into a military checkpoint in Pakistan’s restive northwest, official sources said.
Taliban suicide bombers attack NATO fuel trucks, kills one: –
Taliban suicide bombers have attacked NATO fuel trucks near the Pakistani border. A gunbattle that followed killed one Afghan policeman and wounded three, according to the Associated Press.
Pakistan rules out army action against Taliban:
Mullah Fazlullah, the Pakistani Taliban’s new hardline leader, says peace talks are meaningless and has pledged to step up attacks as part of his campaign to topple the central government and establish Islamist rule in Pakistan.
Glenn Greenwald : The lie of MP Julian Smith :
Fortunately journalists don’t have to answer to government officials about what their sources gave them, or how it is that they got their material. They’re allowed to protect their sources and protect their journalistic materials from invasions by questions from the government like some of the ones you just asked.
Ex-CIA Director Calls For Snowden To Be “Hanged By His Neck Until He Is Dead”:
Former CIA Director James Woolsey has one wish for the holidays: for Edward Snowden to be tried for treason and “hanged.” That was Woolsey’s response to the suggestion of amnesty for Snowden.
John Bolton: Edward Snowden ‘Ought To Swing From A Tall Oak Tree’:
Bolton, who served under former President George W. Bush, characterized Snowden’s actions as treason, and urged against any public talk of amnesty.
Bernie Sanders “NSA Is Keeping Phone Records On EVERY Call Made In America!” :
Video –
Former MI5 officer: Easy to persuade fearful people to give up hard-won liberties:
Video – MI5 whistleblower Annie Machon.
Tech executives to Obama: NSA spying revelations are hurting business:
Leaders of the nation’s biggest technology firms warned President Obama during a lengthy meeting at the White House on Tuesday that National Security Agency spying programs are damaging their reputations and could harm the broader economy.
Russia deal saved Ukraine from bankruptcy – PM Azarov:
Ukraine’s decision to suspend a deal on closer EU ties and sign a Russian aid agreement instead has helped avoid bankruptcy, Prime Minister Mykola Azarov has told ministers in Kiev.
Arctic 30 protesters and Pussy Riot members set to walk free:
Russia passes amnesty law with amendment extending scope to include those arrested on Greenpeace ship
Has the tide turned for corporate Australia?:
 Holden, a subsidiary of General Motors and an iconic brand for locals, said last week that it would stop making cars in Australia by the end of 2017 in a move that would lead to almost 2,900 job cuts.
Spanish Defaults Surge as Banks Forced to Come Clean: Mortgages:
With Spain’s persistently high unemployment rate now at 26 percent, the couple is among the 350,000 homeowners who may be foreclosed upon by lenders in the next two years as the housing crisis worsens. Since 2008, about 150,000 families have been hit with a foreclosure.
Ecuadoreans can seek Chevron damages in Canada:
An Ecuadorean indigenous group can seek enforcement of a $9.5bn (£5.8bn) judgement against US petrol giant Chevron in the Canadian courts, an Ontario appeals court has ruled. Ecuadorean courts awarded the damages in 2011 and 2013 after the villagers sued over 18 years of pollution of the Amazon jungle in the Lago Agrio region.
US Navy officer pleads guilty in bribery case:
A US Navy official has pleaded guilty to conspiracy and bribery charges, admitting he received envelopes of cash and the services of prostitutes from a Singapore-based company at the center of a multimillion-dollar fraud investigation.
Accidental Tax Break Saves Wealthiest Americans $100 Billion:
By shuffling his company stock in and out of more than 30 trusts, he’s given at least $7.9 billion to his heirs while legally avoiding about $2.8 billion in U.S. gift taxes since 2010, according to calculations based on data in Adelson’s U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filings.
Mortgage Applications Collapse To New 13-Year Low:
Mortgage applications index collapses (down 60% from 2013 highs) to a new 13-year low. –
D.C. raises its minimum wage:
The Washington, D.C. city council voted unanimously Tuesday to raise its minimum wage from $8.25 to $11.50 per hour by 2016. Although Democratic Mayor Vincent Gray had previously opposed the measure

Cost Of War

Number Of Iraqis Slaughtered In US War And Occupation Of Iraq 1,455,590


Number of U.S. Military Personnel Sacrificed (Officially acknowledged) In America’s War On Iraq:  4,883

Number Of  International Occupation Force Troops Slaughtered In Afghanistan :3,405

Cost of War in Iraq & Afghanistan
Total Cost of Wars Since 2001


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