Progressives Resist Ending the Wars

Pulling our troops out of Syria is manifestly good, so why all the bipartisan condemnation?

By Philip Giraldi

Liberal interventionists in the media want America’s wars to continue forever. Last Thursday I actually turned on “PBS Newshour” with Judy Woodruff, which I never watch, but the other offerings on television were dismal, and I was flipping channels. She had on as guests her regular commentator Mark Shields and Michael Gerson of The Washington Post. Shields is a hardcore liberal and Gerson is a neoconservative longtime critic of Donald Trump, presumably filling in for regular PBS “conservative” David Brooks. The discussion was about Syria and the resignation of Secretary of Defense James Mattis.

Woodruff had had the pathologically ambitious Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) on earlier, which was a bullet I quite happily dodged. He reportedly said that Trump was “about to make a major blunder on Syria,” aligning him with fellow Republican Sen. Lindsay Graham (S.C.), who said pretty much the same thing.

Given the fact that NPR has a bobo audience that it answers to, I fully expected that there would be a lot of tap dancing about the events of the week but was somewhat surprised to hear nothing but damnation from Shields and Gerson about how the Trump move would do grave if not fatal damage to U.S. national security and how the president, unlike seasoned patriot Mattis, cannot distinguish right from wrong. Gerson said, “You know, you look at his [Mattis’s] resignation letter, which coldly and rationally said to the president, you do not understand our friends, and you do not understand our enemies.”

As America’s self-defined friends in the Middle East might best be described as “frenemies,” I was wondering if either Shields or Gerson (or Rubio) ever venture past the comics pages of their daily newspapers. As they all spend their time in Washington, that newspaper would be The Washington Post, which perhaps explains things, as the paper’s vitriol against Trump and the Syria move has been astonishing by any measure.

In other words, the PBS coverage of a major story was all pure improvisation, straight out of the establishment playbook, and Woodruff wasn’t even canny enough to push back.

Getting out of Syria and hopefully eventually Afghanistan is the best thing that Trump has done for America so far, if he has the guts to actually do it. Both are wars that were unnecessary from day one and are now unwinnable in any real way. They largely keep going fueled by the lies coming from “friends” like Saudi Arabia and Israel aided and abetted by the defense contractor community and the quislings in Congress who are willing to sell out completely to the military-industrial complex because it creates “jobs” in their constituencies.

When I could take no more, I flipped channels and “Democracy Now!” came up, another program I find nearly as loathsome for its unctuous goodliness as PBS news. Amy Goodman fortunately had history professor Andrew Bacevich on, and he explained, citing the general’s letter of resignation, how Mattis “when he talked about his four decades of engagement with these matters, is very telling. He represents the establishment’s perspective, that has evolved over the course of those four decades. And for anyone who says—who looks at U.S. policy over the past four decades, particularly in the Middle East, and says, ‘Yeah, it’s really gone well,’ then I would think that they would view Mattis’s resignation as a disappointment.

Now, when Trump ran for the presidency, he denounced our wars in the Middle East. He promised to withdraw militarily from the Middle East. Two years into his presidency, that hasn’t happened. And in many respects, Mattis has been among those who have frustrated the president’s efforts. Now, I’m in the camp who thinks that we ought to wind down these wars, that we’ve got more important things to do.”

Bacevich also pointed out that the prevailing establishment foreign policy is both morally and practically wrong and unsustainable. He hoped that Trump would prevail against the tremendous pressure that is being exerted against him to recant. I said “bravo” and turned off the TV.

Here is my problem with liberals like Shields and neocons like Gerson: They hate Trump so much that they will do anything to bring him down, even when he is doing something that is manifestly good for the country. Gerson at least is consistent in that he hates Trump and likes America’s wars, but what about Shields and Woodruff? You would think that ending a conflict in which most of the casualties are civilians would be praised by them and the broader social justice warrior community, but where are the liberals supporting Trump on this bold step to disengage from endless and pointless war in the Middle East, either in the media or among the politicians and punditry? MSNBC’s resident progressive screamer Rachel Maddow has been practically foaming at the mouth about Trump since the announcement of the withdrawal was made.

There are indeed some exceptions among genuine liberals who actually have a conscience rather than just a bunch of grievances, to include Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii), who tweeted, “The hysterical reaction to the decision to withdraw troops from Syria is astonishing and shows just how attached to war some are. Lindsey Graham and others want us to continue our regime change war in Syria and to go to war with Iran. That’s why they’re so upset.”

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But in general, reliable leftists have become invisible regarding withdrawing from Syria, a complete reversal to what they were saying some months ago when Trump seemed prepared to stay the course. As a completely unscientific survey of liberal opinion on the issue I cruised through the names of the many friends I have on Facebook that are of progressive persuasion and could not find a single one who was supporting the president. Hypocrisy? Obama’s belligerency, including Syria, which he turned into a war and almost succeeded in escalating into something much bigger, is given a pass while anything Trump does is sheer unmitigated evil.

Trump is under intense pressure from all sides to reverse his decision on Syria and also regarding Afghanistan, which will see a 50% reduction in force. But it is up to all Americans who care about the future of this country to speak up in support of ending the wars that have bled us for the past 17 years. If liberals and neocons cannot bear the thought of supporting a president they loathe who is actually doing something right for a change, we will all regret the failure to end the cycle of war and retribution that has roiled the Middle East since the United States invaded Iraq based on lies in 2003.

Philip Giraldi is a former CIA counter-terrorism specialist and military intelligence officer and a columnist and television commentator. He is also the executive director of the Council for the National Interest. Other articles by Giraldi can be found on the website of the Unz Review.

Trump’s Foreign Policy Remains Muddled

Insanity: President Trump doing the same thing and expecting a different result.

By Dr. Ron Paul

After a week of insisting that a meeting with Vladimir Putin on the sidelines of the G20 meeting in Argentina was going to happen, President Donald Trump at the last minute sent out a statement explaining that due to a Russia-Ukraine dispute in the Sea of Azov he would no longer be willing to meet his Russian counterpart.

According to Trump, the meeting had to be cancelled because the Russians seized three Ukrainian naval vessels in Russian waters that refused to follow instructions from the Russian military. But as Pat Buchanan wrote in a recent column: How is this little dispute thousands of miles away any of our business?

Unfortunately, it is “our business” because of President Barack Obama’s foolish idea to overthrow a democratically elected, pro-Russia government in Ukraine in favor of what his administration believed would be a “pro-Western” and “pro-NATO” replacement. In short, the Obama administration did openly to Ukraine what his Democratic Party claims without proof the Russians did to the United States: meddled in a vote.

U.S. interventionism in Ukraine led to the 2014 coup and many dead Ukrainians. Crimea’s majority-Russian population held a referendum and decided to re-join Russia rather than remain in a “pro-West” Ukraine that immediately began discriminating against them. Why would anyone object to people opting out of abusive relationships?

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What is most disappointing about Trump’s foreign policy is that it didn’t have to be this way. He ran on a platform of America first, ending foreign wars, NATO skepticism, and better relations with Russia. Americans voted for this policy. He had a mandate, a rejection of Obama’s destructive interventionism. But he lost his nerve.

Instead of being the president who ships lethal weapons to the Ukrainian regime, instead of being the president who insists that Crimea remain in Ukraine, instead of being the president who continues policies the American people clearly rejected at the ballot box, Trump could have blamed the Ukraine-Russia mess on the failed Obama foreign policy and charted a very different course. What flag flies over Crimea is none of our business. We are not the policemen of the world, and candidate Trump seemed to have understood that.

But now Trump’s in a trap. He was foolish enough to believe that Beltway foreign policy “experts” have a clue about what really is American national interest. Just this week he told The Washington Post, in response to three U.S. soldiers being killed by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan, that he has to keep U.S. troops fighting in the longest war in U.S. history because the “experts” tell him there is no alternative.

He said, “Virtually every expert that I have and speak to says if we don’t go there, they’re going to be fighting over here. And I’ve heard it over and over again.”

That is the same bunkum the neocons sold us as they lied us into Iraq. We’ve got to fight Saddam over there or he’d soon be in our streets. These “experts” are worthless, yet for some reason Trump cannot break free of them.

Well, here’s some unsolicited advice to the president: Listen to the people who elected you, who are tired of the U.S. as the world’s police force. Let Ukraine and Russia work out their own problems. Give all your “experts” a pink slip and start over with a real pro-American foreign policy: non-interventionism.

Ron Paul, a former U.S. representative from Texas and medical doctor, continues to write his weekly column for the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, online at

Deep States Loves Free Trade, Hates Trump

Funny how mainstream media stays silent when Trump’s policies work and globalists’ free-trade policies fail.

By Donald Jeffries

During his 2016 presidential campaign, Donald Trump became the first major presidential contender to criticize American trade policies since Ross Perot. So-called “free” trade has long been an essential plank of the party platforms of both “opposing” political parties.

Once Trump began actually imposing tariffs on imports, the establishment unleashed the usual “protectionist” smears, and claimed that these tariffs have caused myriad problems. A typical headline from the aptly named Global Times announced, “U.S. Widening Trade Deficit with China Shows Trump’s Trade Policy Backfiring.”

The same kept media was silent after NAFTA was passed in 1993, and the negative effects were obvious. Critics estimated America lost about 20% of its manufacturing jobs during the first 14 years after NAFTA was enacted.

When China entered the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 2001, the impact on American industry was compounded. No less an establishment organ than Forbes magazine would report, on Feb. 14, 2011, that the United States had averaged a loss of 50,000 manufacturing jobs per month since China joined the WTO.

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Pat Buchanan wrote, in a June 18, 2012 column, how at the time NAFTA was enacted in 1993, the United States had a trade surplus with Mexico of some $1.6 billion. By 2010, we had a trade deficit with Mexico of $61.6 billion.

In 1985, Bureau of Census figures showed a manageable deficit with China of $6 million. It was $365 billion by 2015. That represented the largest trade deficit any nation has ever had with another.

Much of the same mainstream liberal press that would blast Trump’s tariffs felt quite differently about the subject a few years previously. The Huffington Post would reflect this, in a March 8, 2014 story headlined, “NAFTA at 20: One Million U.S. Jobs Lost, Higher Income Equality.” The article reported the results of a study by Public Citizen, which noted how the disastrous trade deal had caused a dramatic increase in illegal immigration and corporate welfare, along with a corresponding decrease in American manufacturing jobs.

While corporate giants like General Electric and Chrysler promised to create specific numbers of new jobs if NAFTA was approved, and Bill Clinton assured the public that “NAFTA means jobs,” there were instead significantly increased layoffs and outsourcing. The lure of cheaper labor in countries like Mexico motivated corporations to move their production there.

Trump tapped into the huge discord in the general population with our senseless trade policies, which Perot so memorably predicted would produce a “giant sucking sound” of jobs leaving the country. Trump’s persistent snipes at “globalism” invoked the wrath of an establishment long accustomed to pliable free-trade disciples in the political world. Trump’s website expressed his position on trade succinctly with the headline, “Our country is getting ripped off.”

When General Motors recently announced the closing of five domestic plants and the elimination of thousands of jobs, Trump was irate. In typical cockeyed establishment logic, Trump’s imposition of tariffs was somehow responsible for GM’s actions. Trump blasted the corporate giant and threatened to end the federal tax credits it has long enjoyed.

“Very disappointed with General Motors and their CEO, Mary Barra, for closing plants in Ohio, Michigan, and Maryland.” Trump tweeted. “Nothing being closed in Mexico and China.”

GM memorably benefited from one of the most generous examples of corporate welfare imaginable, when taxpayers bailed it out in 2009. In a clear reference to this, Trump took to Twitter again, declaring, “The U.S. saved General Motors, and this is the thanks we get! We are now looking at cutting all @GM subsidies, including for electric cars.” GM’s Barra received almost $22 million in compensation in 2017, some 295 times what the average employee at the company made.

While Trump soundly chastised GM and Barra in particular, the globalist giant seemed unmoved.  Labor leaders in Ohio, concerned with the closing of the plant in Lordstown, stated that they were unable to reach any GM officials on the phone. Barra exemplifies the establishment liberal mindset; while paying herself quite handsomely, she ruthlessly eliminates blue-collar jobs, all the while touting an environmentally friendly mantra of “zero crashes, zero emissions, and zero congestion.”

The company had the audacity to claim that the taxes imposed by Trump on steel and aluminum imports had cost them some $1 billion. It didn’t explain why they had to use imported steel and aluminum instead of domestic products.

Harley-Davidson angered the president a few months earlier by announcing a move of some of its production overseas.

Beginning with his withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, trade has been one of the areas where Trump has remained true to his campaign rhetoric.

With cheap labor dear to the hearts of globalists everywhere, that isn’t making the Deep State happy.

Donald Jeffries is a highly respected author and researcher whose work on the JFK, RFK and MLK assassinations and other high crimes of the Deep State has been read by millions of people across the world. Jeffries is also the author of two books currently being sold by AFP BOOKSTORE.

A Good Start

We are pleased to be able to kick off 2019 with happy front-page news in Issue 1 & 2. (Subscribers, log in now to read your paper.) AFP applauds pulling U.S. troops out of Syria, Afghanistan . . . and every other nation possible.

By Dr. Ron Paul

We all had a big shock in late December when, seemingly out of the blue, President Donald Trump announced that he was removing U.S. troops from Syria and would draw down half of the remaining U.S. troops in Afghanistan. The president told us the troops were in Syria to fight ISIS and, with ISIS nearly gone, the Syrians and their allies could finish the job.

All of a sudden, the Trump haters, who for two years had been telling us that the president was dangerous because he might get us in a war, were telling us that the president is dangerous because he was getting us out of a war. These are the same people who have been complaining about the president’s historic efforts to help move toward peace with North Korea.

There was more than a little hypocrisy among the “never Trump” resistance over the president’s announcement. Many of the talking heads and politicians who attacked George W. Bush’s wars, then were silent for President Barack Obama’s wars, are now attacking Trump for actually taking steps to end some wars. It just goes to show that for many who make their living from politics and the military-industrial complex, there are seldom any real principles involved.

Among the neoconservatives, South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham’s reaction was pretty typical. Though it seems Graham is never bothered when presidents violate the Constitution to take the U.S. into another war without authorization, he cannot tolerate it when a president follows the Constitution and removes U.S. troops from wars they have no business being involved in. Graham is now threatening to hold congressional hearings in an attempt to reverse the president’s decision to remove troops from Syria.

Neoconservatives are among the strongest proponents of the idea that as a “unitary executive,” the president should not be encumbered by things like the Constitution when it comes to war-making. Now, all of a sudden, when a president uses his actual constitutional authority to remove troops from a war zone, the neocons demand congressional meddling to weaken the president. They get it wrong on both fronts. The president does have constitutional authority to move U.S. troops and to remove U.S. troops; Congress has the power and the obligation to declare war and the power of the purse to end wars.

Most of the Washington establishment—especially the “resistance” liberals and the neocons—are complaining that by removing U.S. troops from these two war zones Trump has gone too far. I would disagree with them. I call Trump’s announcement a good start. Americans are tired of being the world’s policemen. The United States does not “lose influence” by declining to get involved in disputes oceans away. We lose influence by spending more on the military than most of the rest of the world combined and meddling where we are not wanted. We will lose a whole lot more influence when their crazy spending makes us bankrupt. Is that what they want?

We should pay attention to Washington’s wild reaction to Trump’s announcement. The vested interests do not want us to have any kind of “peace dividend” because they have become so rich on the “war dividend.” Meanwhile the middle class is getting poorer, and we’re all less safe. Let’s hope Trump continues these moves to restore sanity in our foreign policy. That would really make America great again.

Ron Paul, a former U.S. representative from Texas and medical doctor, continues to write his weekly column for the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, online at

9/11 Evidence Tampering at WTC?

The Lawyers’ Committee for 9/11 Inquiry, with Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth, is pushing for a grand jury focusing on the Sept. 11 crimes. A recent response from a U.S. attorney seems promising.

By John Friend

On Nov. 7, the Lawyers’ Committee for 9/11 Inquiry received an encouraging letter from Geoffrey Berman, the United States attorney for the Southern District of New York (SDNY). Berman pledged that his office would initiate steps to convene a special grand jury relating to the crimes committed on 9/11.

The Lawyers’ Committee for 9/11 Inquiry, working in collaboration with Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth (AE911Truth), two professional organizations dedicated to exposing the falsehoods of the official 9/11 conspiracy theory, first submitted a petition to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Southern District of New York in April “demanding that the U.S. attorney present to a special grand jury extensive evidence of yet-to-be-prosecuted federal crimes relating to the destruction of three World Trade Center Towers on 9/11 (WTC1, WTC2, and WTC7),” according to AE911Truth’s official website.

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In his response to the petition, Berman indicated his office would “comply with the provisions” of the 9/11 activist groups’ request, a potential breakthrough in the struggle for 9/11 truth and justice. Both organizations have attempted to initiate an official grand jury investigation into the crimes committed on 9/11. AE911Truth has gathered extensive evidence documenting and exposing the WTC buildings’ destruction aspect of the false official narrative explaining this momentous event, which has been used to justify the global war on terror as well as other tyrannical assaults on the Constitution.

Berman’s letter is vague, but the intent of the petition is clear: Any U.S. “attorney receiving information concerning such an alleged offense from any other person shall, if requested by such other person, inform the [special] grand jury of such alleged offense, the identity of such other person, and such attorney’s action or recommendation,” according to 18 U.S.C. § 3332, the U.S. federal code cited by the 9/11 groups in their petition.

The original 52-page petition submitted in April “presented extensive evidence that explosives were used to destroy three WTC buildings,” according to AE911Truth. “That evidence included independent scientific laboratory analysis of WTC dust samples showing the presence of high-tech explosives and/or incendiaries, numerous firsthand reports by first responders of explosions at the WTC on 9/11, expert analysis of seismic evidence that explosions occurred at the WTC towers on 9/11 prior to the airplane impacts and prior to the building collapses, and expert analysis by architects, engineers, and scientists concluding that the rapid onset symmetrical near-free-fall acceleration collapse of three WTC high-rise buildings on 9/11 exhibited the key characteristics of controlled demolition.”

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An amended petition was submitted to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in July that “addresses several additional federal crimes beyond the federal bombing crime addressed in the original petition,” the groups noted. Members of the Lawyers’ Committee and AE911Truth are hopeful the U.S. Attorney’s Office will take concrete steps to set up a grand jury, which will not only raise awareness of the 9/11 Truth movement but also begin the process of hopefully bringing to justice those responsible for planning and executing 9/11.

“The failure of our government to diligently investigate this disturbing evidence has contributed to the erosion of trust in our institutions,” Mick Harrison, an attorney who serves as litigation director for the Lawyers’ Committee, noted following the receipt of the U.S. attorney’s letter. “The Lawyers’ Committee felt it was our duty as public citizens to submit this evidence to the U.S. attorney for submission to the special grand jury.”

William Jacoby, an attorney who sits on the board of the Lawyers’ Committee, is encouraging the public and legal community to support the groups’ efforts. “We call upon the public and legal community to contact us and support our efforts to contribute to this grand jury process and to monitor and ensure compliance by the Justice Department,” Jacoby recently stated.

Attorney David Meiswinkle, current president of the Lawyers’ Committee, has pledged “to assist the U.S. attorney in the presentation of this evidence to a special grand jury,” and hopes that members of the Lawyers’ Committee and AE911Truth will be given an opportunity to present their findings to the grand jury.

“The U.S. attorney’s decision to comply with the special grand jury statute regarding our petitions is an important step towards greater transparency and accountability regarding the tragic events of 9/11,” stated Ed Asner, a longtime 9/11 skeptic and famous actor who is involved with the 9/11 truth movement.

As readers of this newspaper are well aware, an honest, objective grand jury investigation into the atrocities committed on 9/11 is long overdue.

John Friend is a freelance author based in California.

California Election System in Mayhem

Ballot harvesting and jungle primaries have made the Golden State ripe for vote fraud.

By John Friend

Voter fraud and corruption is a very real problem, even in so-called “advanced democracies,” such as the United States. For example, changes made in 2016 to AB1921, a California state law dealing with collecting and submitting voter ballots, may have exacerbated the problem in the Golden State, at least according to some political experts.

Prior to 2016, California election laws stated that voters wishing to vote by mail had to either mail their ballot in or have a family or household member submit the ballot on their behalf at their local polling place. The changes made to AB1921 and signed into law in 2016 by Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown updated the law to allow anyone to return mail ballots on behalf of other voters. Called “ballot harvesting,” the updates allowed third parties—really anyone—to collect ballots from voters and submit them to election officials with little oversight.

The changes were instigated and supported by California Democrats, while Republicans largely opposed the updates.

In the 2018 mid-term election, Democrats in California exploited the new law, befuddling state and national Republican leaders, especially considering that many Republican contenders for various congressional seats around the state were winning on election day. After all ballots were finally counted—weeks after the election—Republicans ended up losing to Democrats in most races, as ballots submitted by third parties were finally counted and factored into the race.

“California just defies logic to me,” outgoing House Speaker Paul Ryan stated shortly after the election results were in. “We were only down 26 seats the night of the election, and three weeks later, we lost basically every California contested race. This election system they have—I can’t begin to understand what ‘ballot harvesting’ is.”

At least six Republican congressional contenders in California were leading their races on election night, but eventually lost after all votes were finally counted. In Orange County, where Democrats won every single House seat, “the number of Election Day vote-by-mail drop-offs was unprecedented—over 250,000,” Fred Whitaker, the chairman of the Orange County Republican Party, noted shortly after the election. “This is a direct result of ballot harvesting allowed under California law for the first time. That directly caused the switch from being ahead on election night to losing two weeks later.”

Ryan called California’s voting system “really bizarre” and appeared quite suspicious of the final vote tallies.

The point is, Ryan stated, “when you have candidates that win the absentee ballot vote, win the day of the vote, and then lose three weeks later because of provisionals, that’s really bizarre.”

Democrats insist they are simply taking advantage of the updated laws and working their hardest to get the vote out, while some Republicans have conceded that they were ill-prepared to take advantage of the updated laws.

“One of the lessons that the GOP needs to learn out of this election cycle is how to work within all of the new rules, same-day voter registration, motor voters,” Rep. Jeff Denham, a Republican congressman who lost in the mid-term election to a Democrat this year, told reporters. “There have been a lot of changes in laws that I think have caught many in the Republican Party by surprise. You can’t just run a traditional campaign as you did before.”

Other GOP leaders indicated that it is time for Republicans to adapt to the new rules in order to compete with Democrats, who were well prepared to exploit the updated laws.

“The Democrats are creating a new, highly efficient tool to turn out voters,” Dale Neugebauer, a Republican consultant in California, stated shortly after the election. “If Republicans can’tfind a way to match it, we’re going to lose more elections all over the country.”

California Republicans have their work cut out for them, as Democrats continue to solidify their power in the state at the local, state and national level.

John Friend is a freelance author based in California. 

California’s ‘Jungle Primary’ Primed Golden State for Vote Scam

By AFP Staff

As if California’s new laws allowing “ballot harvesting” aren’t bad enough, the Golden State’s so-called “jungle primary” before the mid-term election in November made the voting even more chaotic and suspicious.

Back in May 2018, the San Diego Tribune published a lengthy article that explained the state’s jungle primary. “California is one of three states that employ an election process known as the ‘jungle primary’ that leaves the top two vote getters, regardless of political party, facing off in runoff elections in November,” reported the Tribune. “That means in theory a Democrat could compete against another Democrat, or a Republican could compete against another Republican instead of having the top vote getter in each party’s primary advancing.”

Think the IRS Never Loses Cases? Think again!The Tribune noted that this was supposed to open the primaries to third parties and independents. In reality, what Californians witnessed was the Democratic Party taking advantage of this chaotic system to advance even more of its candidates.

For example, this explains why there was no Republican candidate for Senate on the ballot. Instead, voters were only able to choose between two Democrats: Dianne Feinstein and Kevin de León.

Typically, in primaries, registered Democratic voters can only vote for Democrats while registered Republican voters can only vote for candidates from their own party. This usually translates into a general election where a Democrat, a Republican, and anyone else who can get on the ballot is listed for voters. California’s jungle primary, however, opens the primary race to all of the candidates, regardless of political party affiliation.

This has been going on since 2012, and the results are in for independents and third parties. In the past six years, only a handful of candidates who are neither Democrat nor Republican have been able to get on ballots for federal offices.

According to the Tribune, what they have seen, instead, are races flooded with candidates from the two major political parties, drowning out independents and third parties.

Nebraska and Washington are the only other states in the U.S. that have jungle primaries.

Democrats Desperate for Presidential Candidates

The current top contenders for 2020 Democratic presidential candidates include Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Beto O’Rourke.

By S.T. Patrick

The Democratic Party has caught “Betomania,” and it’s spreading all the way to a potential 2020 nomination for president. One prominent Democrat has yet to purchase his own ticket for the Beto bandwagon. Outgoing Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is hesitant about the early hype of Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas). The former chief of staff to President Barack Obama questioned the wisdom of getting behind O’Rourke, who just lost a surprisingly close Senate race to Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas).

“If Beto O’Rourke wants to go and run for president, God bless him. He should put his hat in and make his case,” Emanuel recently told MSNBC. “But, he lost. You don’t usually promote a loser to the top of party.”

Emanuel, a power player in the Democratic Party, was on MSNBC to publicly support Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) in her effort to once again become House speaker. “Nancy Pelosi led the Democratic Party for the last two years from a really bad election in 2016,” Emanuel said. “I’m from Chicago. Maybe I’m really old school, but to the victor go the spoils.”

When asked if a presidential run is possible, O’Rourke has responded that “anything is possible.” A “Draft Beto 2020 PAC” has already been formed by Lauren Pardi, Will Herberich, and Adam Webster, three Democratic strategists based in the Northeast.

“Make no mistake about it,” the strategists wrote, “Beto can win. A recent Politico poll showed that among the field of potential Democratic candidates, Beto was third—behind only Vice President Joe Biden and [Vermont] Sen. Bernie Sanders. . . . Our goal is to show Beto that there is support for his candidacy, starting here in New England.”

In 2016, Emanuel supported Hillary Clinton over both Biden and Sanders. If Mrs. Clinton runs again, he may re-up his support or he may go another direction. It’s feasible that he could run, himself, though there are few Democratic strategists predicting an Emanuel campaign. The strategy at this point would be to appear cold and unimpressed by all potential candidates. In doing so, Emanuel’s support becomes more valuable and could earn him a better position within his chosen candidate’s administration. In politics, support is a commodity. The wise political move is to use it as such, especially when a candidate needs a boost among the party faithful in the primary polls.

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While Obama has not yet endorsed even the possibility of an O’Rourke run—and did not officially endorse his Senate candidacy—the former president has recently made some glowing remarks about the Democratic Party’s favorite new hope.

“It felt as if he based his statements and his positions on what he believed,” Obama said. “And that, you’d like to think, is normally how things work. Sadly, it’s not.”

When O’Rourke was a city councilman in El Paso in 2008, he broke with his local party faithful and supported Obama over Mrs. Clinton in the primaries. Like Obama and Trump, he would hope to catch a sort of “rock star vibe” that pushes candidates through primaries in this new millennium. He has already embraced social media and eschewed consultants, preferring an online presence to a sizeable staff.

In a November poll of Democratic voters, O’Rourke ranked third among 21 other choices. Biden ranked first with Sanders coming in a strong second. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Sen. Corey Booker (D-N.J.), and former mayor of New York City Michael Bloomberg were the only other candidates to receive over 1% in the poll. Whispers within the party are still discussing the remote possibility of a billionaire celebrity run by someone such as television production mogul Oprah Winfrey or Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

The Democratic Party may be in the midst of an identity crisis, still guessing what it will be in 2020. Will it be the blatantly Democratic Socialist party of Sanders and 28-year-old Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) or will it move toward a more popular centrism as it did in Pennsylvania when 34-year-old Rep. Conor Lamb (D-Penn.) flipped a long-held Republican seat in conservative southwestern Pennsylvania? Lamb, a former Marine and federal prosecutor, pushed his military service and moderate views on issues to a victory.

As the Democrats learned in November, they underestimate President Trump at their own expense. Chastising him has only strengthened his base. Antagonizing the base will only further the separation and drive moderates to the right. In a country rife with polarization, both parties will still have to seek those in the middle to win in 2020.

S.T. Patrick holds degrees in both journalism and social studies education. He spent 10 years as an educator and now hosts the “Midnight Writer News Show.” His email is [email protected]

Chapel for Homeless Vets Sold at Auction

A New Hampshire town didn’t want a safe haven for homeless veterans in one of its spacious neighborhoods. Instead, these “neighbors” would rather see the men back on the streets without shelter. But one vet isn’t giving up the fight. 

By Dave Gahary

Over 500,000 Americans remain homeless on any given night in this once-great nation. Now, a story out of the Granite State has many shaking their heads in disbelief. In the spring of 2015 when this newspaper covered the story of Marine Corps veteran Peter MacDonald’s attempts to care for homeless combat veterans with his Veteran Resort Chapel in Lee, N.H., readers were shocked to learn that the town not only wanted no part in his selfless efforts, but they were intent on shutting them down. They’re now on the verge of succeeding.

MacDonald, born in 1952 in Lynn, Mass., joined the Marines when he was 17 years old after his father caught him—a second time—fooling around with a girl in the house. It was two days before Christmas, and the youngster found himself homeless.

“He threw me out of the house and it was snowing, and the only place open when I hitched 40 miles to Manchester, N.H., was a Marine recruiter at 11:30 at night,” MacDonald told this reporter. “He told me if I signed a piece of paper, he’d put me up in a hotel room, so I signed the paper, and next thing I knew I woke up in Parris Island, S.C.”

After graduating and on his way home from boot camp, he suffered a traumatic brain injury in a car crash and lost his entire memory. “I had the mind of an infant, but I was in perfect physical shape, and after 60 days in the hospital, because of an admin error I was sent back to active duty,” he explained, getting shipped to Vietnam.

Plagued with multiple disabilities on combat missions, including a broken back, MacDonald finished his time in the Marine Corps and was discharged.

Making his way back home to New Hampshire, he had a hard time adjusting, and after 30 days ended up homeless on the streets of Portsmouth. “I spent the next several years living under a metal box out in the woods,” he explained, “until another Vietnam veteran found me and brought me to the VA, where they discovered I had four service-connected disabilities.”

AFP Podcast
Dave Gahary talks with U.S. Marines veteran Peter MacDonald about his work with homeless vets and attempt to create shelter on his property in one New Hampshire town.

MacDonald turned his life around with the help of the VA, his future wife, and kids. “We’ve been married 27 years,” he said, “and my three daughters graduated with master’s degrees.”

It was, in fact, his family who came up with the idea to give back. “My wife and three daughters were sitting around the table one night, and they suggested that because I volunteered to help veterans all the time,” he explained, “that maybe it was time that we bought some property and donated it, and started a little chapel and tiny homes for homeless combat veterans where they can live free of charge with all utilities paid until they get back on their feet or they die.”

In 2012, the MacDonalds purchased 11 acres of waterfront property, started a nonprofit, and set it up so “for eternity” this property would be for the purpose of helping homeless combat veterans. “We built the church on it, and we’ve helped over 23 veterans so far; 15 of them have gotten their benefits or gotten their jobs and got back on their feet and now have their own apartments and they’re living a good life, three of them have died, and the town evicted six of them from the property last December,” he said.

Kingdom Identity

The church was built on the property because MacDonald is an ordained minister. “Since 1974 when I got back, even when I was homeless, I’d walk around and talk to homeless people,” he explained. “And when I found a veteran, I’d try to talk them into getting help. It became an obsession with me.”

Forty years on, MacDonald still pounds the pavement. “So even today I still walk around—at least a couple of days a week—looking for homeless people in New England,” he said. “And when I find a veteran now, I buy them a McDonald’s Happy Meal and a cup of coffee, and I talk to them about God and me and helping them come back to real life. Sometimes it helps and sometimes it doesn’t, but that’s what I’m doing with my minister’s certificate. And that’s why we built the chapel, because I wanted the veterans, no matter what faith they are or denomination, to have a place to go to pray and talk to the supreme being of their choice to try to come home mentally.”

MacDonald’s property was a dream come true for homeless vets, but the town’s elite didn’t see it that way.

Toward the end of 2013, MacDonald’s neighbor didn’t want homeless combat veterans living across the street from him. He was on the planning board, so he conspired with a town selectman to shut down the shelter before the completion of the chapel’s construction.

After many court battles, including a judge ruling that MacDonald’s church is not a church, the town came in for the kill this year. “They gave us a writ of execution and fined us $93,447.95,” MacDonald explained. “I refused to pay the money, and so the judge ordered the writ of execution auction,” where, in May, “$500,000 worth of property sold for $105,000.”

MacDonald is not giving up.

“This isn’t over, yet. I cannot allow combat veterans to live out in the woods. Somebody has to fight for them,” MacDonald vows.

Dave Gahary, a former submariner in the U.S. Navy, prevailed in a suit brought by the New York Stock Exchange in an attempt to silence him. Dave is the producer of an upcoming full-length feature film about the attack on the USS Liberty. See for more information and to get the new book on which the movie will be based, Erasing the Liberty.

Lawsuit Could Take Down SPLC

By the AFP Staff

A prominent attorney in Baltimore, Md. has filed a landmark lawsuit in federal court against the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), one of its officers, Heidi Beirich, and a former officer, Mark Potok. Glen Allen alleges that the two, in the course of orchestrating Allen’s dismissal from his position as an attorney with the Baltimore City Law Department, committed numerous unethical and illegal acts, including receipt of stolen property, improper disclosure of confidential and privileged documents, failure to properly train and supervise Beirich and Potok, and falsely claiming Allen was “infiltrating” the Baltimore City Law Department.

Allen sets the stage for his claims by detailing some of the many trenchant criticisms from across the political spectrum that have been leveled in recent years against the SPLC, Beirich, and Potok.

In the filing, he contrasts the robust dialogue, open debate, aversion to taboos, and genuine conversation that lie at the heart of America’s remarkable traditions of free expression—as embodied, among other ways, in the First Amendment—with the SPLC approach, which is “to draw lines of political or cultural orthodoxy, develop massive surveillance networks and extensive dossiers, and severely punish perceived transgressors who cross those lines, seem to cross them, or even seem to think about crossing them,” Allen writes in his complaint.

The attorney notes that among the many victims of the SPLC’s rigid thought-control approach have been African-Americans such as professor Carol Swain, Muslims such as Maajid Nawaz, scholars such as Charles Murray, and many Christian organizations.

Against this background, Allen, in addition to alleging claims personal to himself, challenges the SPLC’s status as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit supposedly dedicated to an educational mission, when in reality it is a highly partisan enforcer of hard-left creeds and taboos. Allen further alleges claims under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act. Among the predicate acts Allen alleges in support of his RICO claims is the SPLC’s false statement on its 501(c)(3) tax filings that it did not participate in political campaigns, when in reality it repeatedly attacked Donald Trump and other Republican candidates but never Hillary Clinton during the 2016 election cycle.

According to Allen, in a moment of candor, Potok, the editor-in-chief of the SPLC’s Intelligence Report, boasted: “We see this political struggle, right? . . . I mean, we’re not trying to change anybody’s mind. We’re trying to wreck the groups, and we are very clear in our head. . . . We are trying to destroy them.”

Beirich has similarly boasted that the SPLC has been “watching Allen like a hawk” because, according to Beirich and the SPLC, he “has the worst ideas ever.”

Such views and aims, as Allen contends in his complaint, are poisonous and treasonous to our American traditions. They are especially appalling when enforced by a supposed 501(c)(3) nonprofit that has accumulated over $450 million in fundraising by claiming to be a respectable civil rights organization.

Anyone wishing to support Allen in his lawsuit against the Southern Poverty Law Center can do so by writing, Glen Allen, P.O. Box 10441, Baltimore, Md. 21209.

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A Lost Opportunity to Teach People About the USS Liberty

Brett Favre was recently pranked by an activist called “Handsome Truth.” But did he go too far and, in doing so, miss an opportunity to draw attention to the plight of the USS Liberty?

By Dr. Kevin Barrett

Quarterback Brett Favre was by far the best thing that happened to the Packers since the Bart Starr era. He was great fun to watch: His love of playing the game was contagious, and his toughness was legendary. Favre was a terrific passer, except when he had lousy receivers and lousy protection and had to keep trying to force the ball into nonexistent windows, which led to his throwing lots of stupid interceptions.

Aaron Rodgers, Favre’s understudy during his last three years with the Packers, watched, took notes, and learned an important lesson: Don’t throw when the receiver isn’t open.

But as much as I love Favre, I have to admit I was rolling on the floor laughing when I saw that somebody had pranked him into making an “anti-Semitic” video. An anonymous individual calling himself “Handsome Truth” had paid Favre $500 to say: “Brett Favre here with a shout-out to Handsome Truth and the GDL boys. You guys are patriots in my eyes. So keep waking them up and don’t let the small get you down. Keep fighting, too, and don’t ever forget the USS Liberty and the men and women [sic] who died on that day. God bless and take care.”

The GDL (Goyim Defense League), which puts up Twitter accounts almost as fast as they can be taken down, describes its mission as being “To stop the defamation of the non-Jewish people, and secure justice and fair treatment to all.” The GDL name is obviously a parody of the ADL (Anti-Defamation League) and JDL (Jewish Defense League), both of which are rabidly Zionist-extremist organizations.

So far so good. But if you look at the GDL’s material on Twitter you’ll see legitimate criticism of Zionism and Jewish supremacism mixed in with words and images that appear to be racial attacks on, and caricatures of, Jewish people.

While some may find such material funny and refreshingly politically incorrect, most of it strikes me as stupidly racist and not particularly funny.

Playing around with racial and ethnic stereotypes can be done well, or it can be done poorly, and the best rule to follow is: If you can’t do it well, don’t do it at all.

By mixing in stupidly racist material with the good stuff, the GDL is turning itself into an off-color joke at best, an obnoxious, offensive, and strategically counterproductive fiasco at worst.

Consider the Favre video. The “remember the USS Liberty” part is great. How could Favre or anyone else ever renounce that? If Handsome Truth had left it there, Favre might have come under pressure, investigated the attack on the USS Liberty, and decided that honoring veterans and dead sailors was defensible. In short, Favre might have come down on the side of free speech, patriotism, and (at least in appearance) anti-Zionism.

But Handsome Truth didn’t leave it there. He couldn’t resist having Favre do an unknowing shout-out to the Goyim Defense League. Sure, it’s hilarious, since the concept of the GDL is a clever parody of the obnoxiously extremist ADL and JDL. But the reality is that most people are brainwashed into believing that Jews have good reasons and the right to defend themselves against non-Jews, but that non-Jews most certainly do not have a corresponding right to defend themselves against Jews. So including the GDL in Favre’s script guaranteed that Favre would eventually have to walk it back.

AFP 2019 Catalog

And then there is the small matter of the “small,” i.e., the “small hats,” a derogatory reference to yarmulkes, and by extension, a slur on Jews. Obviously, this is something that Favre could never defend saying. Nor could media coverage of the ensuing scandal possibly cast it in anything but a “hateful anti-Semitic” light.

By including “GDL” and especially “small (hats)” in Favre’s script, Handsome Truth made the video a whole lot funnier than it would have been if Favre had just said, “Remember the USS Liberty.” So let’s give him an A+ for comedy, and another A+ for shock value.

But the offensive material detracts from the prank’s rhetorical effectiveness.

In the future, it would be interesting to see whether celebrities can be tricked—or convinced—to just “remember the USS Liberty.”

Kevin Barrett, Ph.D., is an Arabist-Islamologist scholar and one of America’s best-known critics of the War on Terror. From 1991 through 2006, Dr. Barrett taught at colleges and universities in San Francisco, Paris, and Wisconsin. In 2006, however, he was attacked by Republican state legislators who called for him to be fired from his job at the University of Wisconsin-Madison due to his political opinions. Since 2007, Dr. Barrett has been informally blacklisted from teaching in American colleges and universities. He currently works as a nonprofit organizer, public speaker, author, and talk radio host. He lives in rural western Wisconsin.

Blame Yemen Slaughter on Obama; Some Congressmen Want Carnage to End

Trump’s predecessor was the one who paved the way for this Mideast genocide.

By Richard Walker

In the last three years, the Saudis and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), with the assistance of London, Paris, and Washington, have dropped over 18,000 bombs on Yemen, a country the size of California, resulting in the slaughter of innocent people and a humanitarian catastrophe on a massive scale.

Before anyone lays the blame for the war crimes committed by the Saudis and their allies at the door of President Donald Trump, though, it should be remembered that the war in Yemen began in earnest in 2015 under President Barack Obama and, if anything, his decision-making provided the impetus for all the killing that has since transpired. He committed the U.S. to backing the Saudis and provided them with even more weapons. He also agreed to expand the UAE’s highly modern arsenal. Though the media rarely focuses on the UAE, it has one of the world’s most powerful armies, and like the Saudis, buys only American weapons.

The UAE has gone under the radar of media coverage even though its planes have bombed civilian targets, and its special forces, mostly American trained, have been accused by Amnesty International of carrying out war crimes in secret prisons in south Yemen. It is one of those rich Arab nations that seeks to impose itself on the region. In 2014, Business Insider published a story claiming the UAE had “the most powerful army you had never heard of.” It uses surrogates, in the form of extreme Islamic militias, including al Qaeda, to do its dirty business in the ground war in Yemen. It also works closely with Erik Prince, brother of Department of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. Prince supplies the UAE with mercenaries.

Congress is finally coming to grips with the Yemen crisis, recognizing that it does not serve U.S. foreign policy interests to be a major player in a war that has killed so many women and children and created a famine that may kill millions. So how did it come about that members on both sides of the aisle in Congress believe it is time to break with the Saudis over this crisis? Some will point to the murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi, but that does not address the fact that, for some time, there has been a bi-partisan congressional effort to draw attention to the issue, and the fact that the Saudi leader, Mohammed bin Salman (MBS), is a dangerous, impetuous ally.

The closer the U.S. gets to his foreign policy adventures, the more likely it will be that Washington will shoulder the blame for his failures. MBS’s role in the Khashoggi murder merely enabled members of Congress to shine a brighter light on Yemen.

Frontman: Obama's Darkest Secrets
Obama’s Darkest Secrets Revealed by Victor Thorn, at AFP’s Online Store

Missing in much of the Yemen coverage is the fact, as AFP reported in October 2016, that 65 members of Congress—Republicans and Democrats—led by Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.), backed a stern letter by Lieu to then-Secretary of State John Kerry about the U.S. role in Yemen. Lieu, a former War College lawyer told Kerry: “The Saudi coalition is intentionally targeting civilians, or they cannot distinguish between civilians and military targets. Both would be war crimes.”

Lieu’s words carried the implication that American military personnel working for the Saudi coalition risked being charged with war crimes. The letter followed the bombing of a funeral in Yemen’s capital that killed 100 civilians and injured 500 others, many of them children. The bomb was a GBU-12 Paveway II 500-pound, laser-guided munition, sold to the Saudis in a Washington arms deal.

Contrary to some reporting, there has been growing bi-partisan congressional support to disengage from the Yemen conflict. It may well be that the Obama administration never fully briefed Trump about the prominent role it played in supporting the Saudi slaughter in Yemen.

Members of Congress have also been angered by intelligence reports confirming that the UAE, with Saudi backing, has paid members of ISIS and al Qaeda to help it run a counter-insurgency campaign in southern areas of Yemen. The UAE would like to make southern Yemen an independent state that the UAE monarchy would control through Islamic proxies linked to al Qaeda, and especially, AQAP—al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, the group Washington fears most. It would give the UAE a direct link through Oman to Yemen and the Arabian Sea.

It is no wonder, therefore, that Congress is disturbed by our alliances with the UAE and the Saudis, who have competing agendas for Yemen and are prepared to work with our enemies to achieve them.

If Congress fails to separate the U.S. and the Saudi-UAE coalition, Washington will own the Yemen War and all that flows from it. The same goes for France and Britain, which have hidden their military backing of the Saudis behind the controversy surrounding the Khashoggi murder. It has allowed them to deflect from their role in Yemen, but many in Congress are determined that should not persist.

Richard Walker is the pen name of a former N.Y. news producer.

Some in Senate Want U.S. Support for Carnage in Yemen Terminated

President Trump vows to veto a bill banning actions not authorized by Congress.

By Mark Anderson

The Senate has been grappling with new legislation (S.J. Res. 54), which, according to the Library of Congress, would “direct the removal of United States Armed Forces from hostilities in the Republic of Yemen that have not been authorized by Congress.” President Donald Trump has so far indicated he would veto the measure.

In a statement released right after the Senate voted 63-37 on Nov. 28 to discharge this resolution from the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and send it to the full Senate for an eventual vote, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), a committee member, said: “I applaud the Senate for taking action . . . to ensure a long-overdue debate on the Senate floor over ending the United States’s unauthorized support for the devastating war in Yemen. With thousands upon thousands of innocent lives lost in Yemen, and millions living on the edge of famine, we must send a clear message that this is not what America stands for, and I welcome a robust debate on ending our involvement in the war, stopping arms sales to Saudi Arabia, and restoring Congress’ voice in foreign policy.”

Paul previously led bipartisan efforts to oppose U.S. involvement in the war in Yemen. In early November, “he forced a procedural vote on his resolution that would have blocked the sale of an estimated $300 million in high-explosive rocket artillery and associated training and support to Bahrain, a member of the Saudi-led coalition waging the war in Yemen,” according to Paul’s press office.

A spokeswoman for his office told AFP on Dec. 6 that the date of the final floor vote on S.J. Res.54, while it conceivably could come at any time, is most likely to happen in mid-to-latter December.

Upon learning of the pending vote on Nov. 28, the White House dispatched Secretary of Defense James Mattis and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to hold a morning press briefing with senators to warn them beforehand that S.J. Res. 54 could impair imminent negotiations that, they say, are designed to broker peace.

According to The Hill, a Washington paper focused on Congress, Mattis and Pompeo also noted, “The UN special envoy for Yemen . . . hopes to convene talks in December after receiving commitments from the Yemeni government and the Houthi rebels it’s fighting.”

Although the Trump administration is replacing NAFTA and has stepped up its efforts to guard the southern border with U.S. troops—among other positive moves that contrast sharply with prior administrations’ policies—the tragic situation in Yemen is arguably one of the Trump administration’s most ill-advised policy ventures.

Iraq & Politics of Oil, Vogler
Iraq and the Politics of Oil at AFP Online Store.

Various accounts from Middle Eastern and Western news sources paint a horrendous picture of widespread civilian death, destruction, and dislocation in this small Arab nation that meets Saudi Arabia’s southern border—resulting mainly from brutal aerial assaults carried out by a Saudi-led military coalition in which U.S. forces have been refueling coalition warplanes and helping target Houthi rebels who are reportedly aligned with Iran and have taken some degree of control of the government.

Author, lecturer, and strategic risk consultant F. William Engdahl, writing for the non-partisan Canada-based website “Global Research,” stated that the situation has “little to do with any Shi’ite [Houthi] versus Wahhabite-Sunni [Saudi] conflict. Rather, it has to do with strategic control of world energy. So long as [the capital city of] Saan’a was in control of a Saudi proxy . . . it was a secondary priority for Washington. The oil was ‘safe,’ even if the Yemen government had [as it did] expropriated the U.S. [oil company] properties.”

However, Engdahl added, “Once a determined independent Houthi Zaidi force was in control of Yemen or a major part, the threat became serious enough . . . to begin the war,” because a “Houthi-controlled Yemen would be a potential client for Russian or Chinese oil companies to open up serious exploration,” combined with the fact that “the Houthi also had friendly relations with Iran.”

Mark Anderson is AFP’s roving editor.

Can America Fight Two Cold Wars at Once?

How did the U.S. reach the point where we’re looking at cold wars on two fronts, and for how long can we maintain this tension?

By Patrick J. Buchanan

Kim Jong Un, angered by the newest U.S. sanctions, is warning that North Korea’s commitment to denuclearization could be imperiled and we could be headed for “exchanges of fire.”

Iran, warns Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, is testing ballistic missiles that are forbidden to them by the UN Security Council.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has warned that, within days, he will launch a military thrust against U.S.-backed Kurdish forces in northern Syria, regarding them as allies of the PKK terrorist organization inside Turkey.

Vladimir Putin just flew two Tu-160 nuclear capable bombers to Venezuela. Ukraine claims Russia is amassing tanks on its border.

Drowning in IRS debt? The MacPherson Group could be a lifesaver!

How did the United States, triumphant in the Cold War, find itself beset on so many fronts?

First, by intervening militarily and repeatedly in a Mideast where no vital U.S. interest was imperiled, and thereby ensnaring ourselves in that Muslim region’s forever war.

Second, by extending our NATO alliance deep into Eastern Europe, the Balkans, and the Baltics, thereby igniting a Cold War II with Russia.

Third, by nurturing China for decades before recognizing she was becoming a malevolent superpower whose Asian-Pacific ambitions could be realized only at the expense of friends of the United States.

The question, then, for our time is this: Can the U.S. pursue a Cold War policy of containment against both of the other great military powers, even as we maintain our Cold War commitments to defend scores of countries around the globe?

And, if so, for how long can we continue to do this, and at what cost?

Belatedly, the U.S. establishment has recognized the historic folly of having chaperoned China onto the world stage and seeking to buy her lasting friendship with $4 trillion in trade surpluses at our expense since Bush 41.

Ship of Fools, Carlson
Now available from AFP, Tucker Carlson’s “Ship of Fools”

Consider how China has reciprocated America’s courtship.

She has annexed the South China Sea, built air and missile bases on half a dozen disputed islets, and told U.S. ships and planes to stay clear.

She has built and leased ports and bases from the Indian Ocean to Africa. She has lent billions to poor Asian and African countries like the Maldives, and then demanded basing concessions when these nations default on the debts owed for building their facilities.

She has sent hundreds of thousands of students to U.S. colleges and universities, where many have allegedly engaged in espionage.

She kept her currency below market value to maintain her trade advantage and entice U.S. corporations to China where they are shaken down to transfer their technology secrets.

China has engaged in cyber theft of the personnel files of 20 million U.S. federal applicants and employees. She apparently thieved the credit card and passport numbers of 500 million guests at Marriott hotels over the years.

She has sought to steal the secrets of America’s defense contractors, especially those working with the Navy whose 7th Fleet patrols the Western Pacific off China’s coast.

She is believed to be behind the cybersecurity breaches that facilitated the theft of data on the U.S. F-22 and F-35, information now suspected of having played a role in Beijing’s development of its fifth-generation stealth fighters.

Christians are persecuted in China. And Beijing has established internment camps for the Uighur minority, where these Turkic Muslim peoples are subjected to brainwashing with Chinese propaganda.

China’s interests, as manifest in her behavior, are thus in conflict with U.S. interests. And the notion that we should continue to cede her an annual trade surplus at our expense of $400 billion seems an absurdity.

We have, for decades, been financing the buildup of a Communist China whose ambition is to expel us from East Asia and the Western Pacific, achieve dominance over peoples we have regarded as friends and allies since World War II, and to displace us as the world’s first power.

Yet if engagement with China has failed and left us facing a new adversary with 10 times Russia’s population, and an economy nearly 10 times Russia’s size, what should be our policy?

Can we, should we, pursue a Cold War with Russia and China, using Kennan’s containment policy and threatening war if U.S. red lines are crossed by either or both?

Should we cut back on our treaty commitments, terminating U.S. war guarantees until they comport with what are true vital U.S. interests?

Should we, faced with two great power adversaries, do as Nixon did and seek to separate them?

If, however, we conclude, as this city seems to be concluding, that the long-term threat to U.S. interests is China, not Putin’s Russia, President Trump cannot continue a trade relationship that provides the Communist Party of Xi Jinping with a yearly $400 billion trade surplus.

For that would constitute a policy of almost suicidal appeasement.

Pat Buchanan is a writer, political commentator and presidential candidate. He is the author of Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever and previous titles including The Greatest Comeback: How Richard Nixon Rose From Defeat to Create the New Majority, Suicide of a Superpower: Will America Survive to 2025? and Churchill, Hitler and the Unnecessary War, all available from the AFP Online Store.


Truths, Lies and Myths of Bush 41

From the JFK assassination to Iran-Contra to John Hinckley Jr.,former President George H.W. Bush was omnipresent. With his recent death and the exorbitant media hoopla over his “greatness,” AFP is pleased to offer our readers S.T.’s article from last week’s paper as well as another timely interview from the Midnight Writer News Show.

By S.T. Patrick

As former President George H.W. Bush was lying in state beneath the rotunda of the Capitol in Washington, D.C., indelible moments emerged from the mourning. President Donald Trump and former Sen. Bob Dole both saluted the former World War II veteran. Bush’s service dog, Sully, sat near the coffin in a photo widely circulated by Bush family spokesman Jim McGrath.

Jon Meacham, one of the “great historians” of academia, and Bush grandson George Prescott Bush were two of the four persons chosen to eulogize the man who had, in his last decades, been simply called “41,” denoting the number of his presidency and differentiating him from “W,” his son. It was state-sponsored drama on the largest scale, and the mainstream media bit. Propaganda is often beautiful.

AFP 2019 Catalog

Many of the memories and accolades dispensed after Bush passed away on Nov. 30 have been bookends of his life: salutes to military service and tales of the congenial elder statesman. Bush, to many, is heard internally in the voice of comedian Dana Carvey saying, “Not gonna do it.” The intentional error of the media saturation is that there is much about Bush’s life that should be discussed. The most consequential sections of his long life reside within the bookends.

After graduating from Yale as a member of the secret society Skull and Bones in 1948, Bush was almost immediately initiated into the globalist hierarchy of his father, Prescott, who had been a senator from Connecticut. After questionable successes and failures with Zapata Oil, an offshore drilling firm, Bush moved to partisan politics, becoming the chairman of the Harris County (Texas) Republican Party in February 1963. That November, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, three hours by car from Harris County. It was a moment never forgotten by everyone who had lived through it. Everyone, that is, except Bush.

For years, Bush peddled “somewhere in Texas” as his location in reference to Kennedy’s last day. Bush’s penchant for misremembering vital historical moments would not end in 1963, but that was an important year for Bush. He had just concluded a hotly contested Senate race against incumbent Democrat Ralph Yarborough (which Bush lost by eight points). Being the only living adult in Texas to forget where they were on Nov. 22, 1963 was more than perplexing. It was suspicious.

In fact, researcher and author Joseph McBride gave us a reason to be suspect of Bush and Dallas, with documentation. While researching an unrelated book, McBride unearthed an FBI document stating that a “Mr. George Bush of the Central Intelligence Agency” had been briefed on Cuban activities the day after the assassination. When Warren Commissioner Gerald Ford appointed Bush to be the director of Central Intelligence Agency in 1976, one of the public persuasions was that he had never had a tie to the CIA. The agency was still reeling from a public-relations war it had temporarily been losing after the Church Committee had exposed its global misdeeds in 1975. Bush claimed he had no ties to the CIA before being named as its director, but further research has validated McBride and not Bush, potentially taking the tie back to 1953.

Kingdom Identity

When Lee Harvey Oswald’s closest confidant in Dallas, oil geologist and Russian anti-communist George DeMohrenschildt, was suicided in March 1977, shortly before testifying to the House Select Committee on Assassinations, the nickname (“Poppy”), address, and phone number of Bush was found in one of DeMohrenschildt’s important notebooks. As it turns out, Oswald’s Dallas handler (as some called him) was an uncle of Bush’s prep school roommate and a friend of Jackie Kennedy’s parents.

After spending the Watergate era chairing the Republican National Committee and sharing mutual friends with Nixon administration counsel John Dean, Bush was attached to the GOP presidential ticket in 1980. Ford had rejected the idea of having Bush as his own vice president. Instead, Bush was given the infinitely more valuable position at the CIA. Ford may not have liked the idea of having Bush one heartbeat away from the oval office.

In Barbara Honegger’s book October Surprise, Bush and Ronald Reagan-era CIA director William Casey are blamed for much of the campaign strategy that resulted in the Iranian hostage crisis being extended until Reagan’s inauguration day. This would lead to funds from Iranian arms sales being siphoned off and sent to Central America to illegally fund the Nicaraguan Contras.

On March 30, 1981, Bush almost found that heartbeat he needed to ascend to the West Wing when Reagan was shot and nearly killed by John Hinckley Jr., who proclaimed he had shot at Reagan as a means by which he could “impress” actress Jodie Foster.

These are still, today, the establishment’s plot points. What is often ignored is that Bush’s son, Neil, was scheduled to have dinner with Hinckley’s brother, Scott, the night of the assassination attempt. Bush had long known John Hinckley Sr., who had been president of both Vanderbilt Energy and World Vision.

On Sept.11, 1990, Bush’s ideological directions became clear as he stood before a joint session of Congress and proclaimed that a “New World Order” (NWO) could emerge out of the strife in the Middle East. Former ally Saddam Hussein had just sent troops into disputed borderlands between Iraq and Kuwait. Reorganizing the Middle East, a project ongoing today and further complicated by George W. Bush and Barack Obama, was the key to establishing Bush’s NWO. It’s also vital to understanding Bush, a man who had, for over 40 years, gleefully aligned himself with the CIA, the UN, globalists, neoconservative war hawks, and Big Oil—misremembering much of it and yet always reminding us that he was a veteran.

The Midnight Writer News Show Episode 105: “Presidential Puppetry with Andrew Krieg”

To discuss the abysmal media coverage surrounding the passing of the late George H.W. Bush, we decided to talk to a man who has traversed the beltway for decades, digging up the inside information on past presidents and candidates. Andrew Krieg, director of the Justice Integrity Project and author of Presidential Puppetry: Obama, Romney and Their Masters, joins S.T. Patrick to discuss presidential politics of the last 40 years.

What should we have known about George H.W. Bush, Bill and Hillary Clinton, George W. Bush, John Kerry, John Edwards, and John McCain? Krieg takes a non-partisan approach to dissecting the pros, cons, misdeeds, and motivations of American presidential and vice-presidential candidates, dating back decades.

In the interview, Krieg covers the Bush dynasty, why Reagan chose Bush in 1980, Bush and the October Surprise, the Willie Horton ad, The Election of 1992, Ross Perot’s deficiencies, what Fletcher Prouty still teaches us, the legitimacy of Bob Dole’s 1996 nomination, the value of Jack Kemp, Bush v Gore, the Two Johns: Kerry & Edwards, the real John McCain, and much more.

Krieg also discusses current events with us, including the Corsi/Stone vs. Mueller situation and the unbelievable resolution of the Jeffery Epstein trial in Palm Beach.

S.T. Patrick holds degrees in both journalism and social studies education. He spent ten years as an educator and now hosts the “Midnight Writer News Show.” He can be reached at [email protected].

Will Congress Ban Boycotts of Israel?

The Israel lobby and its supporters are making a last push before the end of the year to stop the growing Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement. If they don’t get it included as pork in the omnibus spending bill, they’ll have to begin the legislative process in committee over again in 2019. Among these efforts,  Sen. Ben Cardin’s Israel Anti-Boycott Act “is particularly dangerous, going well beyond any previous pro-Israeli legislation, as it essentially denies freedom of expression when the subject is Israel.”

By Philip Giraldi

On Dec. 6, the House of Representatives passed a continuing resolution appropriations bill that will keep the government funded until Dec. 20. By that date it is anticipated that an omnibus end-of-year bill extending that spending authority for 2019 will be completed, assuming that a deal on funding President Donald Trump’s border wall can be worked out.

No one would be surprised if the final appropriations package that comes out of the process will be ill-considered and full of pork for individual congressmen and districts. One trick used to pass legislation that would otherwise fail is to attach a bill anonymously (no name and no number) to the spending bill, which must be passed in one form or another if the government is to continue to function.

One such attachment that has currently and somewhat mysteriously appeared is reportedly entitled “Consideration of Legislation Making Further Appropriations for 2019.” Bills attached in that fashion will become law without debate or being subjected to any challenge from opponents.

There are a number of bills in Congress relating to Israeli interests, most focused to some extent on undermining the nonviolent Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. For the friends of Israel in Congress it is urgent that the bills pass before the end of the year, because if they do not, they will have to begin the legislative process in committee over again in 2019.

Think the IRS Never Loses Cases? Think again!

Israel and its ardent supporters in the media, in lobbies, and in Congress are engaged in a determined push to make BDS illegal in both the U.S. and Europe because they feel threatened by its success, particularly among young people. The most contentious measure currently being promoted is the Israel Anti-Boycott Act (IABA), introduced in the Senate by Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.), which many observers fear will be attached to the impending spending legislation. Cardin and his fellow Democratic senator Chuck Schumer (N.Y.) are the most prominent Israel-firsters in the Senate. In their view, nothing is either too good or too much to give to the Jewish state, while Israel can do no wrong, even when it steals other people’s land while also setting up unarmed demonstrators and medical staff for target practice.

The possible federal legislation would far exceed what is happening at the state level, where 25 governments have passed laws punishing citizens who advocate boycotts of Israel. In Texas and Missouri, citizens have had to sign documents confirming that they would not boycott Israel before receiving disaster assistance or obtaining a state job. IABA would undoubtedly set a new standard for deference to Israeli interests on the part of the national government.

The act would criminalize any U.S. citizen “engaged in interstate or foreign commerce” who supports a boycott of Israel or who even goes about “requesting the furnishing of information” regarding it, with penalties enforced through amendments of two existing laws, the Export Administration Act of 1979 and the Export-Import Act of 1945. The laws include potential fines of between $250,000 and $1 million and up to 20 years in prison, though it is reported that the prison penalty has been removed from the IABA draft in response to objections from civil libertarians.

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The IABA was drafted with the assistance of American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC). The proposed legislation has been strongly opposed by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and other watchdog groups as a major assault on freedom of speech. Some believe it would almost certainly be overturned as unconstitutional if it ever does in fact become law, but that is not a certainty, and it is particularly dangerous, going well beyond any previous pro-Israeli legislation, as it essentially denies freedom of expression when the subject is Israel

The Israel lobby’s Anti-Defamation League (ADL) is also pushing for passage of three other bills dealing with anti-Semitism abroad and in the U.S. One might well question what right the U.S. government has to target allegations of anti-Semitism in other countries, but there appear to be no geographical limits to the hubris of American Jews and their bought-and-paid-for congress-critters. The ADL and friends have demanded “… action on these bills before Congress ends its session would send an important message that America will not remain silent as international Jewish communities are threatened.”

One bill relates to the immediate appointment of a new special envoy to monitor and combat anti-Semitism, a unique and uniquely hypocritical position that has been vacant since January 2017. The special envoy would be responsible for enforcing the Combating European Anti-Semitism Act, which was passed in 2017 unanimously, as well as having input on the definition of anti-Semitism in the pending domestic Anti-Semitism Awareness Act. That definition will include criticism of Israel as anti-Semitism.

Other pending bills condemn Hamas for using human shields against Israel, presumably making the group responsible for the deaths of at least 214 Gazans and the wounding of 10,000 more, all targeted by Israeli army snipers and special ops teams.

There is also the delay in the approval of the 10-year $38 billion guaranteed aid package for Israel, which Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) is currently blocking. Paul, characteristically, is demonstrating what political waffling is all about. A long-time critic of foreign aid in general, he claims that he wants to take away money from countries that criticize the United States to free it up to give to Israel.

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The power of Jewish and Israeli advocates to make what is normally legal illegal cannot be overstated. Recently, professor Marc Lamont Hill was fired by CNN after speaking in support of Palestinian statehood. Critics claimed they were not denying his right to speak but that his comments constituted “hate speech,” yet another mechanism used to dismiss any and all criticism of Israel or the behavior of Jewish groups as anti-Semitism, which is presumably now a criminal offense. Though Hill did nothing wrong, quite the contrary, he apparently recognized force majeure and quickly issued a groveling apology.

The record is clear on what is important to those we have elected to high office. How exactly is it that pandering to something like 2% of the population of the United States has become an obsession in the White House, in Congress, and also, one might add, in the media? Would any other country in the world be passing legislation to protect a racist foreign country that has been with impunity interfering in American elections, robbing the U.S. Treasury and committing what nearly everyone believes to be war crimes?

Senators like Cardin and Schumer should be impeached due to their primary allegiance to a foreign power. That these people are agents of an alien government should be exposed far and wide in the media, but, alas, the media is in collusion with them. Some American voters thought they were taking steps to drain the swamp back in 2016, but, under the current regime, the swamp appears to have grown larger and is now all around us.

Philip Giraldi is a former CIA counter-terrorism specialist and military intelligence officer and a columnist and television commentator. He is also the executive director of the Council for the National Interest. Other articles by Giraldi can be found on the website of the Unz Review.