The U.S. ruling class needs you to fear and hate Russia, China, Iran and North Korea (as they once needed you to hate Iraq, Syria and other nations) to justify their continued, ridiculous, outrageous, near-treasonous-to-the-people, vast sums of money to support a Military-Industrial-Congressional-Intelligence-Media-Academia-Think-Tank-Establishment ( MICIMATE)(a friend of Mickey Mouse?) that does nothing for this country but soak up trillions of dollars instead of affording its people basic healthcare, dental care, vision care, education and sustainable, renewable, long-term energy policies and infrastructure necessary to sustain the health of the planet and the health of its citizenry not to mention paying down our national debt. Will you be proving yourself so stupid, naive and gullible as to ‘go-along’ by hating Russia and China and Iran and North Korea instead of standing up for your own self-respect and worthiness by demanding the same privileges be bestowed on you that other nations bestow upon their citizenry? Will you be so cowardly as to just ‘go-along’ and keep your head down or you will you be brave enough to raise you head and voice to stand up and say, “Enough already!!!”

“Someone needs to say this, and it looks like it’s gotta be me:
China and Russia are not our enemies.

Somehow, the opinion-makers in the media, the bloated military brass with all their ribbons and stars and with little to do but worry about how to keep their massively overbuilt operation afloat with ever more taxpayer money, and the members of Congress who like to gin up fears among the voters so they’ll keep voting for them have gotten everyone thinking that Russia is still hell bent on world communist takeover and that China it trying to replace the US as global hegemon.

Nothing could be farther from the truth.”

“Let’s get real. The US military is the biggest threat to the future of the United States. It’s ravenous appetite for ever more money, which Congress obliges year after year, is gobbling up almost the entire discretionary budget of the federal government — an amount which, even if you just count the official numbers represents half of the total tax collection of the government each year.”

https://www.counterpunch.org/2021/03/18/lets-stop-pretending-russia-and-china-are-military-threats/

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“The U.S.’ budget priorities are dangerously out of whack,” said Win Without War. “It’s time to put them back in order.”
“Now is the time to reverse course on the ‘too much is never enough’ approach to Pentagon spending and start redirecting some of that money into priority domestic and human needs.”
— Robert Weissman

“A broad range of progressive groups on Tuesday echoed 50 Democratic U.S. lawmakers who urged President Joe Biden to redirect government spending from wars and militarism to programs of social and ecological uplift by seeking to reduce the $740 billion Pentagon budget.

In a letter led by Reps. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.), Mark Pocan (D-Wis.), and Jake Auchincloss (D-Mass.), and signed by 47 congressional Democrats, the lawmakers assert that “part of undoing the damage of the last four years is re-evaluating our spending priorities as a nation.”

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2021/03/16/50-house-democrats-demand-biden-slash-pentagon-budget-invest-public-health-common

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If, as President Biden suggests, that we are targeting Russia for human rights violations, then why are we sanctioning Russia but not sanctioning Saudi Arabia? Don’t we have a lot more in common with the Russians than we do with say our “ally” Saudi Arabia who actively suppresses women’s rights, beheads homosexuals, cuts off the hands of people who steal, administers public floggings of people accused of petty crimes, disallows any free speech whatsoever, disallows the practice of any other religion except for Islam (punishable by death), tortures its citizens, crushes any possibility of democracy from the arising in the populace, mistreats migrant workers, funds Wahabbi terrorism including Al Qaeda throughout the Middle East, and commits war crimes upon innocent civilians in nations like Yemen — — now if we can call that country our “ally” and sell them hundreds of millions of dollars of weaponry, then certainly we can talk to Russia and interact with Russia diplomatically, reduce tensions, build a lasting partnership focused on achieving common objectives and mutual respect.

The reality is that our government has no genuine concern for human rights — — — -they reward nations who obey and sanction nations that disobey the dictates of our Empire. That is the real legacy of our global Empire — — — domination, fear, war, threats of war, bribery and extortion all in the name of worldwide power and power projection — — — — — this is the real U.S.-American Empire — — the one the politicians and the media actively conceal from your eyes through sustained propaganda.

Do we really want war with nuclear-armed Russia? Why wouldn’t we want to treat the Russians with respect and build a long-term partnership to achieve common international objectives? Who gave us the right to dictate what their form of government should be? Why shouldn’t we work with Russia diplomatically? Why wouldn’t we show them respect? Why wouldn’t we be interested in reducing tensions? Why wouldn’t we be open to the possibility of mutual ongoing dialogue and respect unless what we really value is global power projection over international cooperation, respect and understanding?

https://www.thenation.com/article/archive/detente-now-a-new-call-for-peace-security-and-cooperation/
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“The Biden administration has created a completely unnecessary confrontation with Russia at a time when reasonable working relations with Moscow are extremely important for achieving two immediate and key administration goals: rejoining the nuclear agreement with Iran, and a peace settlement in Afghanistan facilitating U.S. military withdrawal from that country and an end to America’s longest war.

The administration approach combines many of the errors committed by Washington officials, politicians, and the media in recent years.”

https://responsiblestatecraft.org/2021/03/18/calling-putin-a-killer-with-no-soul-is-not-exactly-the-best-way-to-reset-diplomacy/
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“On the anniversary, Ann Wright voices opposition to the weapons build-up against China and the construction of a $1.9 billion defense radar in her home state of Hawaii.”

https://consortiumnews.com/2021/03/19/18-years-ago-today-the-us-war-on-iraq-began/
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“Americans owe a debt to the people of Iraq that can never be repaid in full. However, it is incumbent and imperative that we try.”

“Millions of people have been displaced directly by American bombing and invasion and indirectly by the rise of militia and paramilitary groups that flourished after the U.S. dismantled the Iraqi state. Extensive bombardment has destroyed thousands of homes, mosques, schools, and hospitals.

The use of weapons such as cluster bombs and depleted uranium has contaminated the landscape with dangerous and toxic unexploded munitions and heavy metals. Bombing, battles, and careless military occupation have damaged and destroyed an unknown number of priceless artifacts and world-historical monuments.”

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2021/03/19/after-30-years-war-against-iraq-americans-must-make-reparations
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If you don’t understand why Biden is channeling Trump on foreign policy then you should remember this: Despite the veneer of poltical parties and civilians controlling foreign policy, the reality is that the military mostly controls foreign policy and civilian control is long since dead. To have civilian control over the military would require democratic government of which the U.S. is not.

“Recent events have caused alarm even within the Democratic party.”

“The dominant narrative in the news media is that the election of Joe Biden means that the “adults” and “professionals” are now back in charge of U.S. foreign policy after four years of dangerous, amateurish behavior by Donald Trump and his appointees. Events are proving otherwise. Several early Biden administration actions should sound alarm bells with both Congress and the American people. The only question is whether those missteps reflect incompetence or arrogance.”

https://nationalinterest.org/blog/skeptics/bidens-foreign-policy-clumsiness-due-incompetence-or-arrogance-179017
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“US media hailed a Newlines Institute report accusing China of Uyghur genocide as a “landmark” independent analysis. A look beneath the surface reveals it as a regime change propaganda tool by interventionist operatives at a sham university.”

“The report’s authors have insisted that they are “impartial” and are “not advocating any course of action whatsoever.” But a closer look at the report and the institutions behind it reveals its authors’ claims of “independence” and “expertise” to be a blatant deception.

Indeed, the report’s principal author, Yonah Diamond, recently called on the Biden administration to unilaterally “confront,” and “punish” China for supposedly committing genocide, and expand sanctions against the country. Meanwhile, the think tanks behind the report have advocated fervently for the West to “combat” and sanction China, and have promoted US regime change policies targeting Syria, Venezuela, Iran, and Russia.

A majority of the report’s “expert” signatories are members of the Newlines Institute and the Wallenberg Centre. Others are members of the hawkish Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China, former US State Department officials, and ardent supporters of US military interventionism. The report relies most substantially on the “expertise” of Adrian Zenz, the far-right evangelical ideologue, whose “scholarship” on China has been demonstrated to be deeply flawed, riddled with falsehoods and dishonest statistical manipulation.”

https://thegrayzone.com/2021/03/17/report-uyghur-genocide-sham-university-neocon-punish-china/
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“It’s time we stop prioritizing weapons before citizens and re-evaluate our funding of nuclear weapons.”

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2021/03/17/starve-pentagon-feed-people
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“Without a rapid and substantive pivot towards an aligning diplomatic strategy on Iran — something that the Biden administration talks about but has not yet acted on in a meaningful way — there is an acute risk of wider military escalation. A series of recent incidents in Yemen, Saudi Arabia, and the Gulf of Oman indicate just how febrile the regional environment has become.”

https://responsiblestatecraft.org/2021/03/11/force-of-habit-why-the-u-s-risks-being-sucked-into-a-military-showdown-with-iran/
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The Biden Administration — — — — war, war and more endless war. Why? Because President Biden is a coward, too afraid to challenge the military-industrial-complex. Politicians are not leaders, folks, they are followers. They follow the money that puts them in office and keeps them there. They are not interested in leading. They are only interested in preserving their jobs and fame. Look to activists for leadership. Activists are leaders whilst politicians are followers. This is why Biden is such a coward on Afghanistan.

“The US appears to be trying to buy more time in Afghanistan. The Biden administration presented the Taliban and the US-backed government with a power-sharing deal for an interim government, which both sides are now deliberating on.”

https://news.antiwar.com/2021/03/17/biden-says-leaving-afghanistan-by-may-would-be-tough/
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Does our military actually “serve” us or “disserve” us? Are generals really patriots or are they more actually traitors who care more for their own budgets, power, influence and the policy of endless war than what is actually good for the United States in the long-term? They may not even know their contribution to this kind of treason.

“Appointed in the final days of Trump’s presidency to remove all US troops from Afghanistan, Douglas Macgregor tells The Grayzone how military leadership undermined the withdrawal and pressured Trump to capitulate.”

https://thegrayzone.com/2021/03/16/trump-us-military-peace-agreement-war-afghanistan/
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By playing with definitions, the military is able to keep more troops in Afghanistan than it publicly reports.

“Their presence also highlights just how opaque and secretive the conduct of America’s decadeslong war in Afghanistan has been.

“I don’t think the U.S. public genuinely understands just how little oversight there is over troops deployments around the world,” Adam Weinstein, a research fellow with the Quincy Institute, tells Reason. “The last 20 years has produced this culture in Washington, D.C., where foreign policy and conducting wars is viewed as this technocratic or bureaucratic process that should fall outside the scope of electoral politics.”

https://reason.com/2021/03/16/the-public-has-no-real-way-of-knowing-how-many-troops-are-actually-in-afghanistan/
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“The U.S. military rushed thousands of combat troops to the Middle East in 1990 to prevent Saddam Hussein from capturing Saudi oil fields and disrupting global oil supplies. More than 30 years and two major land wars later, we’re still there — and still with no plan or strategy to leave.

It is time to acknowledge the painful reality and finally, fully withdraw our troops.”

https://www.military.com/daily-news/opinions/2021/03/16/regardless-of-how-messy-things-get-iraq-we-must-end-war-and-finally-fully-withdraw.html
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“A joint letter urges lawmakers to “defend the Constitution and Congress’s exclusive authority, under Article I, to declare war and authorize the offensive use of military force.””

“The strike’s lack of congressional approval, and the administration’s erroneous justification, set a dangerous precedent that risks embroiling us in more endless war.””

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2021/03/16/warning-bidens-syria-strikes-set-dangerous-precedent-groups-push-congress-respond
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Dear Lloyd: Any loudmouth, cowardly fool can make threats against another nation from a comfortable 7,000 miles away while sitting in an armchair, but it takes real courage to challenge the militarism of the MICIMATE and the neoconservative/neofascist warmongers whose answer to every challenge is more war. Do you or your boss possess the courage to engage in diplomacy and make peace? I doubt it yet I will keep pressing for you to do so.

“Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin warned North Korea that US forces are ready to “fight tonight” after Pyongyang denounced Washington and Seoul’s decision to resume military exercises. The US and South Korea are resuming military drills after pausing them for a year due to the coronavirus pandemic.”

https://news.antiwar.com/2021/03/18/secdef-austin-to-north-korea-us-ready-to-fight-tonight/
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“It’s amazing how we can become numb to circumstances with the passing of time. The U.S.-led War on Terror is nearing its twentieth year with no clear end in sight. Indeed, to many average people in the West, the perpetual violence of the War on Terrorism has become normal, and we have become indifferent.

America bombing and invading the Middle East has become a dark cliché. Nobody bats an eye. There are so many facets, so many groups, and countries involved, and so many interconnected moving parts that it’s perfectly understandable to throw your hands up and accept this whole dizzying headache as just the way things are and always will be, forever.”

https://www.austriancenter.com/time-to-end-the-war-on-terror/
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“If the Pentagon is committed to transparency, as it has claimed, then it continually finds a way to suspend the rules when it comes to providing the American public with timely and accurate data.

The New York Times recently reported that the actual number of U.S. troops in Afghanistan is closer to 3,500 than the 2,500 announced by then Acting Defense Secretary Chris Miller on Jan. 15. The extra forces reportedly include temporary units and some Rangers who fall under both the CIA and Defense Department while in Afghanistan.”

https://taskandpurpose.com/news/pentagon-transparency-issues/
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“Rafael Grossi said JCPOA participants should take advantage of the three-month ‘window of opportunity’ Iran has granted”

https://news.antiwar.com/2021/03/16/iaea-chief-says-us-return-to-iran-deal-is-still-possible/
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:Alena Douhan, the UN special rapporteur on the negative impact of unilateral coercive measures on the enjoyment of human rights, published her preliminary report on February 12 on the impact of US and European sanctions on Venezuela.

The report laid bare how a years-long campaign of economic warfare has asphyxiated Venezuela’s economy, crushing the government’s ability to provide basic services both before and during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The [Venezuelan] government’s revenue was reported to shrink by 99%, with the country currently living on 1% of its pre-sanctions income,” Douhan found, impeding “the ability of Venezuela to respond to the Covid-19 emergency.”

https://fair.org/home/un-rebuke-of-us-sanctions-on-venezuela-met-with-stunning-silence/
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The war in Yemen — — — -just as vicious as the war in Syria — — -both examples of the disaster of continued U.S. intervention.

https://www.thenation.com/article/world/yemen-mwatana-radhya-almutawakel/
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“It’s not enough to limit U.S. involvement in the war on Yemen. To pursue peace, Biden must also end military support for Riyadh.”

“The Obama and Trump administrations made Americans accomplices to Saudi aggression and war crimes. The Biden administration should end all military assistance in any form for Riyadh as long as the latter is involved in the conflict.”

https://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/biden-must-pressure-saudi-arabia-to-end-the-war-on-yemen/
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“Drones are neither as cheap, targeted, or bloodless as advertised. They’re ripe for international arms control.”

“While drones can take out military targets, they are more commonly used to assassinate people one doesn’t approve of. A case in point was former President Trump’s drone strike that killed Qasem Solemani, a top Iranian general, a country we are not at war with.

In just the first year of his administration, Trump killed more people — including 250 children — with drones in Yemen and Pakistan than President Barack Obama did in eight years. And Obama was no slouch in this department, increasing the use of drone attacks by a factor of 10 over the administration of George W. Bush.”

https://original.antiwar.com/hallinan/2021/03/17/day-of-the-drone-we-need-an-international-convention-on-drones/
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“The US’ seismic change in its foreign policy priorities stemmed from its failure to translate the Iraq war and invasion of 2003 into a decipherable geo-economic success as a result of seizing control of Iraq’s oil largesse — the world’s second-largest proven oil reserves. The US strategy proved to be a complete blunder.

In an article published in the Financial Times in September 2020, Jamil Anderlini raises a fascinating point. “If oil and influence were the prizes, then it seems China, not America, has ultimately won the Iraq war and its aftermath — without ever firing a shot,” he wrote.

Not only is China now Iraq’s biggest trading partner, Beijing’s massive economic and political influence in the Middle East is a triumph. China is now, according to the Financial Times, the Middle East’s biggest foreign investor and a strategic partnership with all Gulf States — save Bahrain. Compare this with Washington’s confused foreign policy agenda in the region, its unprecedented indecisiveness, absence of a definable political doctrine and the systematic breakdown of its regional alliances.”

https://www.counterpunch.org/2021/03/19/from-the-earth-to-the-moon-bidens-china-policy-doomed-from-the-start/
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“Rahm Emanuel has never been associated with the word “diplomatic,” but news reports say that President Joe Biden is seriously considering him for a top position as U.S. ambassador to Japan or China. Naming Emanuel to such a post would be an affront to many of the constituencies that got Biden elected. The saga of Emanuel’s three decades in politics is an epic tale of methodical contempt for progressive values.

One thing Emanuel can’t be accused of is inconsistency. During his political career, he has steadily served elite corporate interests, and rarely the interests of the broad public or the causes of racial justice or peace.”

https://consortiumnews.com/2021/03/18/rahm-emanuel-under-consideration-as-top-ambassador/
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“The Washington Post’s media-spread error about Trump’s Georgia call shows the deceitful playbook first invented to undermine Trump and promote Russiagate.”

“In other words, the conspiracy theory that the media pushed on Americans since before Trump’s inauguration — to the point where it drowned out most of U.S. politics and policy for years — proved to have no evidentiary foundation. And that is one reason I say that the sectors of the media pretending to be most distraught at the spread of “disinformation” by anonymous citizens on Facebook and 4Chan are, in fact, the most aggressive, prolific and destructive disseminators of that disinformation by far (nor was it uncredentialed YouTube hosts, Patreon podcasters or Substack writers who convinced Americans to believe that Saddam Hussein possessed nuclear weapons and was in an alliance with Al Qaeda but rather the editor-heavy prestige outlets such as The New York Times, The New Yorker, NBC News and The Atlantic).”

https://greenwald.substack.com/p/how-do-big-media-outlets-so-often
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“Eager to obtain vindication for the pre-election falsehood they spread about the Hunter Biden story, journalists falsely claim that the CIA blamed Russia for it.”

“Oh my, marvel at those extremely rigorous editorial standards: regurgitating serious accusations from ex-CIA operatives without bothering to note that they were unaccompanied by evidence and that even those agents admitted they had none. But, as they usually do these days, The Intercept had plenty of company in the corporate media.”

https://greenwald.substack.com/p/journalists-illustrating-how-they
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“As Julian Assange continues to languish in a British prison, a growing number of politicians from his native Australia are speaking out against his incarceration and the U.S. espionage indictment against him for publishing defense information.”

https://consortiumnews.com/2021/03/18/watch-outside-parliament-australian-politicians-call-for-assanges-release/
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Remember, folks, as it pertains to criticizing Israeli policy, most claims of anti-Semitism are merely attempts by some to change the narrative — — that is, by pretending to be victims rather than admitting the truth that those pretending to be the victims are actually the oppressors, the real victims, i.e., Palestinians, continually get ignored.

“Yet, if one insists that the Palestinians have no standing before the ICC since they lack sovereignty, then the only way to avoid Netanyahu’s accusation of hypocrisy would be to infer that the entire area between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River as well as the people living in it are controlled by Israel.

This, however, would mean agreeing with Israel’s foremost human rights organization B’tselem, which has claimed that the Palestinian territories are ruled by one regime — namely, Israel. B’tselem goes on to explain that this regime is “organized under a single principle: advancing and cementing the supremacy of one group — Jews — over another — Palestinians.” The human rights organization concludes that “a regime that uses laws, practices and organized violence to cement the supremacy of one group over another is an apartheid regime.”

https://original.antiwar.com/neve-gordon/2021/03/16/the-icc-and-israels-charge-of-anti-semitism/