July 4 Festivities Contrast With Cruel Toll From Global Wars


As the United States celebrated on July 4 its 1776 independence movement, terrified residents of the world's current trouble spots struggled to survive war and misery.

TFireworks July 4, 2014he picnic-like atmosphere on the Washington Mall before a huge evening fireworks display contrasted sharply with the horrors of a new war in the Ukraine between separatists and the United States-backed new government. 

From the rooftop of my office on Pennsylvania Avenue, I took the photo at left of the capital city's elaborate fireworks display. The Washington Monument is faintly visible at the left of the display, which the federal government organizes annually to commemorate the colonists' Declaration of Independence from Great Britain. The Washington Post headlined part of its July 5 print edition "Capital knows how to party" to capture the festive mood on the mall.

Meanwhile, the United States and its onetime enemy, the United Kingdom, have been closely allied in fostering revolutions against existing governments worldwide, including the Mideast, Africa and South America.

Most prominent recently is the two nations' alliance via NATO in the Ukraine. They and Western powers orchestrated the overthrow of the elected Ukrainian government in February following U.S-supported riots in the capital city of Kiev. The regime-change preparations became most visible via a leaked cable from U.S. Ambassador to the European Union Victoria Nuland, as recounted in Top U.S. Diplomat Caught On Tape In Profane Plot.

Then the West backed the new government against separatists who arose in the industrial eastern region, which is largely comprised of ethnic Russians.Ukraine couple Фото: Валерий Мельников Ria Novosti Valeriy Meinikov

On July 1, the recently elected Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko halted a 10-day ceasefire in the country’s east and ordered the Ukrainian National Guard to resume fighting rebels, who sought to create during the spring to create an independent country aligned with Russia.

The photo at right is from the Russian news agency RIA Novosti, which reported that Ukraine's central government attacked on July 2 civilians in the village of Luganskaya and nearby.

Such images should be part of Western news accounts even if debate can occur, as often in a war zone, regarding the specific circumstances.

The Russian news agency asserted that the damage came from Kiev-backed artillery shelling of civilian targets. But the agency also quoted Kiev authorities as denying they caused the damage. Kiev officials attributed the horrors to self-inflicted harm by rebels, an assertion disputed by some of the civilians interviewed in the bombing zone.

Most United States mainstream media have ignored the photos, attributed to RIA's Valeriy Melnikov. Suppression helps keep news coverage focused on story lines advocated by the State Department, CIA and White House and those of like-minded news managers in other nations.

My recent book, Presidential Puppetry, argues that powerful entities exercise hidden controls over the media and government. The Washington Post, for example, has long had a close working relationship with the CIA and its Wall Street allies. The Post's new owner, Amazon.com founder Jeffrey Bezos, illustrated that relationship last fall when Amazon.com won a $600 million contract from the CIA to handle the agency's cloud computing.

Fortunately, independent journalists are providing alternative information. What follows on the next page is a snapshot of such coverage involving the Ukraine. As a warning, at least one photo is too graphic for comfortable viewing.

The Colonial Rebellion Against Britain

As context, only a minority of American colonists actively sought independence during the American Revolution two hundred years ago.

Dolley MadisonBritish hostilities continued through its War of 1812, which produced "The Star Spangled Banner" by Francis Scott Key as he celebrated after a British attack "bombs bursting in air -- which gave proof through the night that the flag was still there."

Many Americans in the capital region celebrate the story of Dolley Madison, wife of President James Madison. She saved historical relics as she fled the White House during a British attack. The popular portrait at left illustrates how the same actions can be regarded as heroic by some, although others (like the British in this case) would regard them as rebellious.

The British continued to fight the United States in later years in various ways short of outright war. The British supported in hidden ways the Confederate secession, for instance, during the Civil War.

Some British leaders later hoped to restore the United States to colonial status, or at the minimum keep the United States as a junior partner in British Empire-building as a commonwealth.

One of these visionaries was Cecil Rhodes, the diamond and gold mining tycoon whose bequests helped establish the Rhodes Scholarships and other major institutions to promote the empire's growth.

As World War I and II eroded British strength the current system of alliances evolved in which the ruling dynasties of the two nations reached a strong working relationship on such key issues as banking, foreign policy, intelligence operations, and public relations strategies using the media, foundations, and other groups.

Gertrude Bell in Babylon in 1909 (photo via Wikimedia) The now-disintegrating map of the former British and French colonies in the Mideast was inspired in significant part by British intelligence agents operating shortly before World War I, as described by a lively recent account in the Daily Beast. Gertrude of Arabia, the Woman Who Invented Iraq portrayed the career of Gertrude Bell, shown at right. She created a larger impact on the future of that region than her better-known contemporary T. E. Lawrence, "Lawrence of Arabia."

Little remembered in the United States, but surely at least worth mentioning by someone occasionally, is that our country joined with the British, French and Japanese to invade Russia between mid-1918 and 1920 to bolster our World War I effort and to overthrow the Bolsheviks.

Also relatively little-known is the extent of United States recruitment of German scientists and engineers via Operation Paperclip even before the end of World War II regardless of Nazi past to prepare for the Cold War.

Retired Air Force Col. Fletcher Prouty described in his 1996 memoir JFK secretly transporting a hundred German POWs in that or a similar program on one flight alone from Romania to the relative safety of Syria before the war ended. Prouty went on be become a top liaison between the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff and the CIA in the late 1950s and early 1960s.

The Soviets had lost at least 20 million dead during the war against Germany and the other Axis Powers. The dead included large numbers in what is now the Ukraine, a Soviet Republic until the Communist nation's break-up.

The Ukraine

Barack Obama and Petro Poroshenko June 4, 2014Because of so many dead from World War II, Russians have been far more worried than Americans about the presence of neo-Nazi and other ultra-rightists as leaders in the new Ukraine government, especially in posts with police and military powers.

The White House photo at left shows President Obama making his points to Ukraine's president, Poroshenko, during a meeting June 4 in Poland.

Fast forward to this week's events and commentary:

Mainstream United States coverage included Washington Post accounts July 1, Putin vows to defend Russian interests as Ukraine violence again escalates, and July 5, Rebels flee Slovyansk as Ukrainian forces recapture key city,. The Post has maintained an aggressive editorial push to reshape the Ukraine's political orientation in tandem with State Department, White House, Downing Street, NATO and European Union positions, and minimizes any reporting (much less photographs) regarding violence victims from separatists and civilians in their regions.

In the alternative media, however, a documentary by a group called Storm Clouds Gathering published via YouTube, The Odessa Massacre -- What REALLY Happened, which portrayed how West-backed rioters as helping to massacre an estimated 40 persona trapped in an Odessa office building. 

Peace advocate Ray McGovern, a former Army intelligence officer and CIA analyst for 27 years until resigning during the George H.W. Bush Presidency, published Who Violated Ukraine’s Sovereignty? on June 28 and then The Risk of a Ukraine Bloodbath July 2, each via Consortium News.

McGovern had been chief of the CIA's Soviet Foreign Policy Branch in Moscow and as well as preparer/briefer of daily intelligence briefings to White House staff during the Reagan presidency. In the more recent column, McGovern argued:

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko – by thumbing his nose at the leaders of Russia, Germany and France as they repeatedly appealed to him to renew the fragile ceasefire in eastern Ukraine – has left himself and his U.S. patrons isolated, though that’s not the version of the story that you’ll read in the mainstream U.S. press. But the reality is that an unusual flurry of high-level conference calls last weekend from key European capitals failed to dissuade Poroshenko from launching major attacks on opposition forces in eastern Ukraine. Washington was alone in voicing support for Poroshenko’s decision, with a State Department spokeswoman saying “he has a right to defend his country.”

Ukraine war corpse Валерий Мельников Ria Novosti Valeriy MeinikovRIA Novosti began publishing photos of civilian deaths collected in such columns as, Russia Urges Kiev to Stop Attacking Civilian Targets, Using Violent Methods. One such photo is at right, showing a corpse in the foreground near a bomb crater just at the edge of the photo frame. "Luganskaya is home to about 15,000 people," the report said, "and has not been directly involved in the fighting between government forces and the self-proclaimed People’s Republic of Lugansk."

Freelancer Eric Zuesse has drawn on the photos and videos for several hard-hitting blogs, including one in OpEdNews, The U.S. Elite Run a Ukrainian Genocide While American Public Are Ignorant of It. "Washington's people do not call this ethnic cleansing operation what it is; they instead call it Ukraine's 'Anti Terrorist Operation,' or 'ATO' for short." he wrote. "The people we're massacring are 'Terrorists.' What they actually are is simply the residents in the parts of Ukraine that had voted overwhelmingly for Viktor Yanukovych on 7 February 2010 to become president, the final nationwide election in Ukraine."

Dr. Paul Craig Roberts, a conservative scholar and former Wall Street Journal editor and Reagan Administration assistant Treasury secretary, then argued on his Institute for Political Economy site and elsewhere, Washington Murders Countries, the US Constitution, and the Presstitute Media Makes Americans Complicit. "Thanks to Op-Ed News contributor Eric Zuesse," Roberts wrote, "I can bring to your attention these photographs of what the government in Washington is doing to Ukrainians who protest the theft of their country."

Paul Craig RobertsRoberts, shown at left, continued, "Before you wrap yourself in the flag this July 4th, realize that 'your' government under Clinton, Bush, and Obama has destroyed in your name eight countries, murdering, maiming, and displacing millions of civilians -- and now is at work on Ukraine."

Separately, Roberts wrote in July 4th Militarist Bunkum, "Did you know that 85 to 90 percent of war’s casualties are non-combatant civilians? That is the conclusion reached by a nine-person research team in the June 2014 issue of the American Journal of Public Health. The deaths of soldiers who are fighting the war are a small part of the human and economic cost. Clearly, wars do not protect the lives of civilians."

"Keep that in mind for July 4th....America’s most important national holiday celebrating American independence from Great Britain."

To be sure, Associated Press correspondent David McHugh was correct in his July 3 column when he wrote, "It is nearly impossible to prove or dispel the claims from the opposing sides, since the fighting consists of intermittent clashes between small units with no fixed front line and it is deadly dangerous for journalists and other observers to travel around. Five journalists have been killed covering the conflict and several teams of observers from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe have been kidnapped by rebels."

In approaching such complex topics, it is usually better to reflect first on others' observations. For many of us, perceptions and motivations, not simply the facts, remain elusive.

Summing Up
 
Nonetheless, there are some moments that require attention. On July 4, I saw a few peace advocates seeking to keep hard questions visible.
 
Happily oblivious were nearly all of the tens of thousands of Mall visitors enjoying the patriot-themed holiday experiences, including music, picnics and then evening fireworks.
 
Fireworks July 4, 2014 Image 3All those activities are entirely understandable.
 
And so this column is addressed primarily to those in the mainstream media and others in thought-leadership. The vast majority are, for whatever reasons, protecting readers, viewers and other constituent partners from the complexities and harsh realities of war for the most part. One method is to avoid photographs of devastation of the kind included here, except when displays suit the interests of United States news-makers and their patrons.
 
The press can be quite daring in tweaking readers and others who hold scant power. But it is literally a different story to challenge authority in the White House or the power structure above that. 
 
This column began with reflections about the joyful celebrations of the July Fourth holiday.
 
The Lincoln Memorial, faintly visible in the fireworks photo's lower right hand corner, is associated not only with its namesake president, who preserved the Union against domestic and foreign enemies.
 
But the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered from the memorial's steps in 1963 his iconic "I Have A Dream" speech. The speech became famous only afterwards because the Washington Post, as it recently confessed, and many other media in a city whose power structure was frightened of the march worried too much about the city's security to cover King's talk.

Nearly four years later, King delivered his other most famous address from the pulpit of New York City's Riverside Church.

Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break Silence is particularly relevant now because King risked everything he had been achieving in civil rights to break new ground for the movement he led. He detailed his reasons for opposing the Vietnam War.

In a stirring and courageous address, King drew on such varied sources as the Declaration of Independence, the civil rights struggle and his religious faith. He said:

In international conflicts, the truth is hard to come by because most nations are deceived about themselves. Rationalizations and the incessant search for scapegoats are the psychological cataracts that blind us to our sins. But the day has passed for superficial patriotism. He who lives with untruth lives in spiritual slavery. Freedom is still the bonus we receive for knowing the truth....Now, I've chosen to preach about the war in Vietnam because I agree with Dante, that the hottest places in hell are reserved for those who in a period of moral crisis maintain their neutrality. There comes a time when silence becomes betrayal.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and President Lyndon B. JohnsonKing continued:

Do you realize that the Vietnamese people proclaimed their own independence in 1945 after a combined French and Japanese occupation. And incidentally, this was before the Communist revolution in China. They were led by Ho Chi Minh. And this is a little-known fact, and these people declared themselves independent in 1945.

They quoted our Declaration of Independence in their document of freedom, and yet our government refused to recognize them. President Truman said they were not ready for independence. So we fell victim as a nation at that time of the same deadly arrogance that has poisoned the international situation for all of these years. France then set out to reconquer its former colony. And they fought eight long, hard, brutal years trying to re-conquer Vietnam. You know who helped France? It was the United States of America.

In breaking new ground in foreign affairs, King antagonized some supporters and allies. These includes those in the civil rights movement, powerful members of the media and President Lyndon Johnson, who had signed historic civil rights legislation and created the War on Poverty in addition to staking his legacy on escalating the Vietnam War. The two are shown at right.

King thus risked everything, much like the colonial rebels and many others since then from around the world who necessarily proceed on imperfect information when it comes to complex matters of war and peace. Some scholars argue that King paid with his life by generating a new level of animosity against him leading to his assassination in 1968.

We need not go that far. As a start, it should be enough to look closely at some of this column's photos and reflect on what they might teach us.


 
 
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Related Ukraine News Coverage

Mainstream U.S. Coverage

Ukraine Map Wikimedia CommonsWashington Post, Rebels flee Slovyansk as Ukrainian forces recapture key city, Karoun Demirjian, July 5, 2014. Pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine’s east were dealt a major setback Saturday when they were forced to flee a key stronghold city after days of battling government forces, Ukrainian officials and rebels said. Many of the rebels who had captured and held Slovyansk since April left the city, relocating their headquarters in nearby Kramatorsk, pro-Russian officials said. The recapture of Slovyansk is a significant step for Ukrainian forces, which have been trying to establish control over the area since a unilateral cease-fire expired earlier this week. President Petro Poroshenko ordered troops to raise the Ukrainian flag over the city, with jubilant officials trumpeting the rebels’ retreat as a major victory for the government. “This is a genuine disarmament, presaged by the announcement of my plan for peaceful settlement of the situation in the east,” Poroshenko wrote on his Facebook page, announcing that Ukrainian armed forces and national guard troops now control Slovyansk and were recovering weapons and a tank left behind by fleeing militants. Rebel leaders said that pro-Russian forces decided to retreat after street fights with government troops began. But they did so only to protect civilians, they said.

Associated Press via ABC News, Ukraine Claims Winning Ground in Rebellious East, David McHugh, July 3, 2014. Fighting n eastern Ukraine left at least nine Ukrainian soldiers dead Friday, as government troops pressed their offensive against pro-Russian insurgents using heavy artillery and combat jets and prospects of a truce appeared dim. Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said Ukraine was ready to conduct another round of talks between representatives from Ukraine, Russia and the rebels on Saturday, but didn't name their venue. Two previous rounds of such negotiations held during a 10-day cease-fire have yielded no visible progress, but they brought the warring parties together for the first time.

Gertrude Bell (via Daily Beast)Daily Beast, Gertrude of Arabia, the Woman Who Invented Iraq, Clive Irving, June 17, 2014. The story of the British intelligence agent who rigged an election, installed a king loyal to the British, drew new borders—and gave us today’s ungovernable country. Gertrude Bell came into Baghdad after months in one of the world’s most forbidding deserts, a stoic, diminutive 45-year-old English woman with her small band of men. She had been through lawless lands, held at gunpoint by robbers, taken prisoner in a city that no Westerner had seen for 20 years. It was a hundred years ago, a few months before the outbreak of World War I. Baghdad was under a regime loyal to the Ottoman Turks. The Turkish authorities in Constantinople had reluctantly given the persistent woman permission to embark on her desert odyssey, believing her to be an archaeologist and Arab scholar, as well as being a species of lunatic English explorer that they had seen before. She was, in fact, a spy and her British masters had told her that if she got into trouble they would disclaim responsibility for her.

Washington Post, Putin vows to defend Russian interests as Ukraine violence again escalates, Michael Birnbaum, July 1, 2014. Russia is involved in a historic effort to defend its civilization, President Vladimir Putin said Tuesday, vowing to protect the interests of the Russian community abroad as violence again escalated in Ukraine. Hours after Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko ended a ceasefire and renewed his assault against pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine’s southeast, Putin compared Ukraine to Iraq, Syria and Libya and said that he could not stand by as a nation with close historical ties to Russia was taken over by people he dismissed as “neo-Nazis.” Putin made no specific commitment to increasing Russia’s involvement in the roiling southeast region of Ukraine, but he indicated that he would blame Poroshenko for any violence in Ukraine going forward. It was a hint that a stretch of conciliatory efforts from the Kremlin after Ukraine’s May 25 presidential election may be at an end. 

Washington Post, What you know about July 4th is wrong, Valerie Strauss, July 2, 2014. You learned in school about what happened in July 1776, and think you have a good handle on events surrounding American independence from Great Britain. Right? Well, if you think that was the day that America’s independence was declared by the Continental Congress meeting in Philadelphia, you are wrong. And if you think that that was the day that members of the Congress signed the new Declaration of Independence, as depicted in a famous canvas painting by John Trumbull, (which now hangs in the Rotunda of the Capitol of the United States), you are wrong. And if you think that Thomas Jefferson alone wrote the Declaration of Independence, or the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia was made to ring to announce independence, or that Betsy Ross sewed the first American flag at the request of George Washington, you are wrong, wrong and wrong. And if you never learned about George Washington’s own declaration, that’s another gap in your historical knowledge.

Russian Coverage

Ukraine July 2, 2014 Ria Novosti Valeriy MeinikovRIA Novosti, Russia Urges Kiev to Stop Attacking Civilian Targets, Using Violent Methods, Staff report, July 4, 2014. The relatives and friends of Vladimir Yermilov and his son, Vanya, both of whom were killed in a Ukrainian military artillery strike on the village of Luganskaya. The Russian Foreign Ministry called on Kiev Friday to stop attacking civilian targets and residential districts and to refrain from trying to resolve problems solely by force. “We again call on the Ukrainian authorities to stop attacks on civilian targets and residential districts and, ultimately, to start thinking about saving the lives of ordinary people,” the ministry said in a statement. “Kiev’s ongoing attempts to solve problems solely through forceful methods, through putting forward ultimatums and announcing more and more demands are against the July 2 Berlin declaration by foreign ministers of Germany, Russia, Ukraine and France and will cause only bloodshed and more casualties,” the statement reads. The ministry said the Ukrainian authorities have intensified their rhetoric and started employing more violent methods in the eastern regions after its leaders contacted top US and UK officials, who have “de-facto supported Kiev’s actions.”

Alternative U.S. and European Coverage

Consortium News, Who Violated Ukraine’s Sovereignty? Ray McGovern, June 28, 2014. The West has accused Russia of violating a 1994 pledge to respect Ukraine’s sovereignty in exchange for its surrender of Soviet-era nuclear weapons. But the West’s political and economic interference might also represent a violation, says ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern, shown in a file photo. Washington's people do not call this ethnic cleansing operation what it is; they instead call it Ukraine's "Anti Terrorist Operation," or "ATO" for short. The people we're massacring are "Terrorists." What they actually are is simply the residents in the parts of Ukraine that had voted overwhelmingly for Ray McGovernViktor Yanukovych on 7 February 2010 to become President, the final nationwide election in Ukraine. And here these millions of "Terrorists" are now, being bombed by us, and fleeing to refuge in Russia (you can see it, and hear it happening, right there: those "Terrorists," fleeing our bombs) -- it's part of our ethnic-cleansing operation, not of any Anti Terrorist Operation, at all. Because it is we, the United States itself, that are terrorizing them, to flee. And "we" -- our Government, as if they really represented us (which they obviously do not) -- are therefore mass-murdering them. This is what the U.S. "news" media have been hiding from us, by stenographically reporting Obama's lies, as if those lies represented truths instead of lies -- just like Bush's lies about "Saddam's WMD" did, and the U.S. media did, before we invaded Iraq on 19 March 2003.

Consortium News, The Risk of a Ukraine Bloodbath, Ray McGovern, July 2, 2014. Pressured by neocons and the mainstream U.S. media, the Obama administration is charting a dangerous course by seeking a military solution to Ukraine’s political crisis and possibly provoking Moscow to intervene to protect ethnic Russians, ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern warns. Ray McGovern works with Tell the Word, a publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Savior in inner-city Washington. During his 27 years as a CIA analyst, he served as chief of CIA’s Soviet Foreign Policy Branch as well as preparer/briefer of the President’s Daily Brief.  He is now on the Steering Group of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS).  Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko – by thumbing his nose at the leaders of Russia, Germany and France as they repeatedly appealed to him to renew the fragile ceasefire in eastern Ukraine – has left himself and his U.S. patrons isolated, though that’s not the version of the story that you’ll read in the mainstream U.S. press. But the reality is that an unusual flurry of high-level conference calls last weekend from key European capitals failed to dissuade Poroshenko from launching major attacks on opposition forces in eastern Ukraine. Washington was alone in voicing support for Poroshenko’s decision, with a State Department spokeswoman saying “he has a right to defend his country.”

OpEd News, Ukraine President Threatens Resistance with Nazi -tyle Reprisal Killings, Michael Collins, July 11, 2014. Obama administration lapdog, Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko, threatened the Eastern Ukraine resistance with harsh punishment for defending themselves against his government's military assault on their towns and cities. Reuters reported the following promise of reprisal: "For every soldier's life, the militants will pay with scores and hundreds of their own. Not a single terrorist will avoid responsibility; each will get what they deserve." Poroshenko and his comrades were reacting to a major resistance victory against Ukraine's regular army. Somewhere between 20 and 40 Ukrainian troops were killed in an attack by resistance forces under the command of Igor Strelkov. Poroshenko failed to note that the missiles he claimed were used against Ukraine regulars are the same types of weapons the Kiev government used against cities and towns in the contested, densely populated Donbass region under attack.

Marcello Ferrada de NoliProfessors' Blog, US State Department publicly endorses Ukraine’s “every right” to aerial bombing the ethnic-Russian population in Donbass, Marcello Ferrada de Noli, July 8, 2014. The following dialog took place during the US State Department’s Press briefing with journalists on July 7, 2014.  A journalist takes up the issue of the civilians “killed in their homes and backyards,” and whether the US government would do anything to stop those war atrocities. “These [ethnic-Russian] people died by airstrikes ordered by Kiev, not by Russia and not by the separatists,” said the journalist. The State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki responded, “The government of Ukraine is defending the country of Ukraine, and I think they have every right to do so, and also the international community.” The journalist replied, "And these [ethnic-Russian] people have the right to live, don’t they?" Psaki said, "The Ukrainian people have the right to live; without Russia-backed separatists attacking their homes and going to their buildings."

Dr. Ferrada de Noli, shown in a file photo, is a longtime professor of medicine and human rights activist based in Sweden and Italy. He commented on the blog item above: "The State Department spokesperson could very well have chosen to answer, for instance: “Yes, those people [the ethnic-Russian victims of the aerial bombardment] have the right to live – as every Ukrainian.” But instead Psaki chose to distinguish between 'The Ukrainian people' AND the 'Russia-backed separatists.' thus giving clearly the impression of supporting the racial supremacist notion of the Ukrainian government: that in the Ukraine there are 'Ukrainians' with rights, and 'Russians' without."

StormCloudsGathering via YouTube, The Odessa Massacre -- What REALLY Happened, May 12, 2014 (video: 10:58 min.). Contrary to what the mainstream media has tried to convince you, it's not at all a mystery how the fire started in Odessa, Ukraine and it's not at all a mystery who started it. We owe it to the victims to expose what really happened. On that page you will have links to the images in question, but we won't assault you with them by surprise.

Petro Poroshenko w 2010OpEdNews, The U.S. Elite Run a Ukrainian Genocide While American Public Are Ignorant of It, Eric Zuesse, July 3, 2014. On July 2, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, shown at left, resumed unlimited war against the residents of southeastern Ukraine, whom he calls "terrorists" for their wanting not to be killed by his troops. European leaders (especially Merkel of Germany, Hollande of France, and Putin of Russia) urged him not to resume his bombing campaign against the southeast, but the U.S. (specifically President Obama) supports the bombings, and that's enough for Poroshenko. As the U.S. State Department said, "he has a right to defend his country." Reuters reports that Poroshenko gave as his reason for the resumption, "to rid Ukraine of 'parasites'." Adolf Hitler had given the same reason for ethnically cleansing his country.

Institute for Political Economy, Washington Murders Countries, the US Constitution, and the Presstitute Media Makes Americans Complicit, Paul Craig Roberts, July 3, 2014. I can bring to your attention these photographs of what the government in Washington is doing to Ukrainians who protest the theft of their country. Before you wrap yourself in the flag this July 4th, realize that “your” government under Clinton, Bush, and Obama has destroyed in your name, in whole or part, eight countries, murdering, maiming, and displacing millions of civilians, and now is at work on Ukraine.

Ukraine woman RIAOpEd News, Ukrainian Air Force Bombing Villages, Killing Civilians, Andre Vltchek, July 5, 2014. Editor's Note: Let us recall that while Ukrainians are hardly innocent to the hardships and horrors of war they are not these days nor have they been for a while in any kind of murderous tumult like that visited daily on the people of Iraq or the Palestinians. Thus this level of military activity is something of a shock for a population until recently living in relative peace under one national government.

New York Times, The Next Act of the Neocons, Jacob Heilbrunn, July 5, 2014. The neoconservative movement is back, using the turmoil in Iraq and Ukraine to claim that it is President Obama, not the movement’s interventionist foreign policy that dominated early George W. Bush-era Washington, that bears responsibility for the current round of global crises. Even as they castigate Mr. Obama, the neocons may be preparing a more brazen feat: aligning themselves with Hillary Rodham Clinton and her nascent presidential campaign, in a bid to return to the driver’s seat of American foreign policy. To be sure, the careers and reputations of the older generation of neocons — Paul D. Wolfowitz, L. Paul Bremer III, Douglas J. Feith, Richard N. Perle — are permanently buried in the sands of Iraq. And not all of them are eager to switch parties: In April, William Kristol, the editor of The Weekly Standard, said that as president Mrs. Clinton would “be a dutiful chaperone of further American decline.” But others appear to envisage a different direction — one that might allow them to restore the neocon brand, at a time when their erstwhile home in the Republican Party is turning away from its traditional interventionist foreign policy. It’s not as outlandish as it may sound. Consider the historian Robert Kagan, the author of a recent, roundly praised article in the New Republic that amounted to a neo-neocon manifesto. He has not only avoided the vitriolic tone that Victoria Nuland, Oleh Tyahnbock, Arsenye Yatsenyuk Vitali Klitschkohas afflicted some of his intellectual brethren but also co-founded an influential bipartisan advisory group during Mrs. Clinton’s time at the State Department.

Justice Integrity Project, Top U.S. Diplomat Caught On Tape In Profane Plot, Andrew Kreig, Feb. 7, 2014. The leak of a pirated U.S. diplomatic phone call involving plots to install new leaders in the Ukraine created an extraordinary embarrassment for the United States and illustrated the dangers of pervasive surveillance. The call involved U.S. Ambassador to the European Union Victoria Nuland, left, one of the country's most prominent diplomats for years. She is connected to the bipartisan neo-con / neo-liberal movement that her Kagan family helps lead along with such powerful media conduits as the Washington Post. Nuland can be heard saying "F__ the E.U." on the call to U.S. Ambassador to the Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt  as they ponder moves to pressure the Ukraine's pro-Russia government and install new leadership. Nuland and Pyatt dismiss for now the potential of dissident leader Vitali Klitschko, a former world champion heavyweight boxer, to assume a leadership post in a new government. “I don’t think it’s necessary,” Nuland said. “I don’t think it’s a good idea.” Pyatt agreed.

Following installation of a U.S.-aligned government in the Ukraine, Assistant Secretary of the U.S. to the European Union Victoria Nuland celebrates with, from the left, ultra-right leader Oleh Tyahnybok, former professional boxer Vitali Klitschko, and Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk. Editor's Note: Nuland for these purposes is best regarded as a puppet string connecting powerful world leaders in the financial community to government officials who implement the policies. Nuland's husband, Robert Kagan, is part of the influential Kagan family that helped build momentum beginning in 1996 for the United States to invade Iraq. Their Project for a New American Century (PNAC) advocating such policies was comprised of prominent advocates for the neo-con agenda heavily identified with the Republican Party. The Obama administration, recognizing Nuland's role, retained her from the Bush-Cheney administration and kept her visible as spokeswoman for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

 

1967 Anti-Vietnam War Speech of the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

 


Martin Luther King, Jr. "Why I Am Opposed to the War in Vietnam" (1,559,942 visitors). Speech by Martin Luther King, Jr. against the "triple evils of racism, economic exploitation, and militarism." Audio. his speech was released by Black Forum records, a subsidiary of Motown, and went on to win a Grammy in 1972.

Wikipedia, Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break Silence. On April 4, 1967, the major speech at Riverside Church in New York City followed several interviews and several other public speeches in which Dr. King came out against the war in Vietnam and the policies that created the war. Some, like civil rights leader Ralph Bunche, the NAACP, and the editorial page writers of the Washington Post and the New York Times called the Riverside Church speech a mistake on King's part. Others—including James Bevel, Dr. King's partner and strategist in the Civil Rights Movement—called it Dr. King's most important speech.

Let me say finally that I oppose the war in Vietnam because I love America. I speak out against this war, not in anger, but with anxiety and sorrow in my heart, and, above all, with a passionate desire to see our beloved country stand as the moral example of the world. I speak out against this war because I am disappointed with America. And there can be no great disappointment where there is not great love. I am disappointed with our failure to deal positively and forthrightly with the triple evils of racism, economic exploitation, and militarism.

It is time for all people of conscience to call upon America to come back home. Come home, America. Omar Khayyam is right: "The moving finger writes, and having writ moves on." I call on Washington today. I call on every man and woman of good will all over America today. I call on the young men of America who must make a choice today to take a stand on this issue. Tomorrow may be too late. The book may close. And don't let anybody make you think that God chose America as his divine, messianic force to be a sort of policeman of the whole world.

Text of Dr. King's complete speech.

 

Fourth of July Fireworks & Historical Background

 

Time, Have you ever wondered what it would be like to fly through a fireworks display? Justin Worland, July 4, 2014. This video, shot from a drone with an on-board camera, shows exactly what that looks like. It’s footage nothing short of incredible. 

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John WhiteheadRutherford Institute, Tyranny Resurrected, John Whitehead (shown in file photo), July 5, 2014. It is fashionable in some quarters to debunk the Founding Fathers who guaranteed Americans civil liberties with a Constitution. The debunkers have helped the New Tyrants destroy the Constitution. Imagine living in a country where armed soldiers crash through doors to arrest and imprison citizens merely for criticizing government officials. Imagine that in this very same country, you’re watched all the time, and if you look even a little bit suspicious, the police stop and frisk you or pull you over to search you on the off chance you’re doing something illegal. Keep in mind that if you have a firearm of any kind while in this country, it may get you arrested and, in some circumstances, shot by police. If you’re thinking this sounds like America today, you wouldn’t be far wrong. However, the scenario described above took place more than 200 years ago, when American colonists suffered under Great Britain’s version of an early police state. It was only when the colonists finally got fed up with being silenced, censored, searched, frisked, threatened, and arrested that they finally revolted against the tyrant’s fetters.