Will Tribalism Trump Democracy?

The issue of our age, writes Buchanan, is the “struggle between the claims of tribe, ethnicity, peoples, and nations, against the commands of liberal democracy.” Is America “a unique people with our own history, heroes, holidays, religion, language, literature, art, music, customs, and culture, recognizable all over the world” or have the culture wars made it impossible for us to live amicably? If not, he writes, secession may be inevitable. 

By Patrick J. Buchanan

On July 19, the Knesset voted to change the nation’s Basic Law.

Israel was declared to be, now and forever, the nation-state and national home of the Jewish people. Hebrew is to be the state language.

Angry reactions, not only among Israeli Arabs and Jews, came swift.

Allan Brownfeld of the American Council for Judaism calls the law a “retreat from democracy” as it restricts the right of self-determination, once envisioned to include all within Israel’s borders, to the Jewish people. Inequality is enshrined.

And Israel, says Brownfeld, is not the nation-state of American Jews.

What makes this clash of significance is that it is another battle in the clash that might fairly be called the issue of our age.

The struggle is between the claims of tribe, ethnicity, peoples, and nations, against the commands of liberal democracy.

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In Europe, the Polish people seek to preserve the historic and ethnic character of their country with reforms that the EU claims violate Poland’s commitment to democracy.

If Warsaw persists, warns the EU, the Poles will be punished. But which comes first: Poland, or its political system, if the two are in conflict?

Other nations are ignoring the open-borders requirements of the EU’s Schengen Agreement, as they attempt to block migrants from Africa and the Middle East.

They want to remain who they are, open borders be damned.

Britain is negotiating an exit from the EU because the English voted for independence from that transitional institution whose orders they saw as imperiling their sovereignty and altering their identity.

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When Ukraine, in the early 1990s, was considering secession from Russia, Bush I warned Kiev against such “suicidal nationalism.”

Ukraine ignored President Bush. Today, new questions have arisen.

If Ukrainians had a right to secede from Russia and create a nation-state to preserve their national identity, do not the Russians in Crimea and the Donbass have the same right—to secede from Ukraine and rejoin their kinsmen in Russia?

As Georgia seceded from Russia at the same time, why do not the people of South Ossetia have the same right to secede from Georgia?

Who are we Americans, 5,000 miles away, to tell tribes, peoples, and embryonic nations of Europe whether they may form new states to reflect and preserve their national identity?

Nor are these minor matters.

At Paris in 1919, Sudeten Germans and Danzig Germans were, against their will, put under Czech and Polish rule. British and French resistance to permitting these peoples to secede and rejoin their kinfolk in 1938 and 1939 set the stage for the greatest war in history.

Here in America, we, too, appear to be in an endless quarrel about who we are.

Is America a different kind of nation, a propositional nation, an ideological nation, defined by a common consent to the ideas and ideals of our iconic documents like the Declaration of Independence and Gettysburg Address?

Or are we like other nations, a unique people with our own history, heroes, holidays, religion, language, literature, art, music, customs, and culture, recognizable all over the world as “the Americans”?

Since 2001, those who have argued that we Americans were given, at the birth of the republic, a providential mission to democratize mankind, have suffered an unbroken series of setbacks.

Nations we invaded, such as Afghanistan and Iraq, to bestow upon them the blessings of democracy, rose up in resistance. What our compulsive interventionists saw as our mission to mankind, the beneficiaries saw as American imperialism.

And the culture wars on history and memory continue unabated.

According to The New York Times, the African-American candidate for governor of Georgia, Stacey Abrams, has promised to sandblast the sculptures of Robert E. Lee, Stonewall Jackson, and Jefferson Davis off Stone Mountain.

The Republican candidate, Brian Kemp, has a pickup truck, which he promises to use to transfer illegal migrants out of Georgia and back to the border.

In Texas, a move is afoot to remove the name of Stephen Austin from the capital city, as Austin, in the early 1830s, resisted Mexico’s demands to end slavery in Texas when it was still part of Mexico.

One wonders when they will get around to Sam Houston, hero of Texas’s War of Independence and first governor of the Republic of Texas, which became the second slave republic in North America.

Houston, after whom the nation’s fourth-largest city is named, was himself, though a Unionist, a slave owner and an opponent of abolition.

Today, a large share of the American people loathe who we were from the time of the explorers and settlers, up until the end of segregation in the 1960s. They want to apologize for our past, rewrite our history, erase our memories and eradicate the monuments of those centuries.

The attacks upon the country we were and the people whence we came are near constant.

And if we cannot live together amicably, secession from one another, personally, politically, and even territorially, seems the ultimate alternative.

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.


Trump’s Victories Cannot Be Denied

American Free Press Issue 31&32 has been sent to the printer, and digital subscribers can read the issue online now. (Log in here if you’re a subscriber; click here to view options if you’re not yet a subscriber.) The front page article of this issue is from AFP’s editorial team.


With the July 27 announcement that the U.S. economy had grown by over 4%, the mainstream media has been forced to concede that President Donald Trump has had a banner first term pushing through his America-first agenda. Even CNN, often called the “Clinton News Network” for its non-stop sycophantic coverage of the Clintons, this month had to admit that it’s a “golden age” for Trump.

So let’s take a moment to acknowledge what Trump has accomplished in the year-and-a-half he has been in office.

With the U.S. economy booming along at 4.1% growth, cable business network CNBC reports this is the fastest rate of growth in four years and the third best growth rate in the last decade. Following the economic indicators announcement, Trump told reporters, “We’re on track to hit the highest annual growth rate in over 13 years.”

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The U.S. unemployment rate—tracking only Americans actively involved in the workforce, not those who have given up or are under-employed—has dropped to 3.8%. Even the broadest category of unemployment—U-6, which the Bureau of Labor Statistics explains tracks “all persons marginally attached to the labor force”—is at 7.8%, a good indicator of how many Americans are actually working today. Those numbers are especially strong for minorities. For example, less than 8% of black Americans are jobless today, the lowest reported rate since the early 1970s.

Trump’s administration has been quietly packing the courts with conservative judges, including two new Supreme Court justices—Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh. Even the mainstream media has been forced to concede that Trump is winning when it comes to revamping the judicial system. Fortune magazine reports that in the next two years, if Trump stays on pace, he will likely be able to fill over 200 of the nearly 900 seats in the judiciary. “And since 39% of his nominees will replace judges appointed by Democratic presidents, his picks will undoubtably move the judiciary to the right in ideological terms,” reported Fortune.

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When it comes to world affairs, Trump is moving ahead with his America-first agenda. Last month, Trump visited Europe where, for all of the world to see, he tore into the European Union leaders, arguing that they unfairly protect their economies while stacking the deck against the U.S. Outwardly, Europe’s elected and unelected leaders bristled at Trump’s remarks, but quietly they all sat down at the table to discuss ways to erect a fairer system of trading for everyone involved.

Trump also lambasted wealthy Europeans for fleecing Americans to pay for their defense via NATO, according to which the U.S. is required to pay a ridiculous 4% of U.S. gross domestic product defending Europe from a non-threat while those same countries pay a pittance.

While the big media—funded by globalists who make billions off U.S. military overspending—raged at Trump for threatening to quit NATO, there was no doubt that the president’s tough talk resonated at home among working-class Americans.

These are but a few of the victories that the current occupant of the White House is securing for the United States. The next time the far left goes off on Trump, let them know that Americans are moving ahead with or without them, as the current administration finally takes steps to put America first.

Trump’s Tweets End the Myth of Fed Independence

By the end of his first term, President Trump could appoint six of the Federal Reserve’s seven board members, writes Ron Paul, and fear of a Trumpian Fed could lead some to support the Audit the Fed legislation. Passing that bill would be the first step in protecting Americans from the Fed.

By Ron Paul

President Trump’s recent Tweets expressing displeasure with the Federal Reserve’s (minor) interest rate increases led to accusations that President Trump is undermining the Federal Reserve’s independence. But, the critics ignore the fact that Federal Reserve “independence” is one of the great myths of American politics.

When it comes to intimidating the Federal Reserve, President Trump pales in comparison to President Lyndon Johnson. After the Federal Reserve increased interest rates in 1965, President Johnson summoned then-Fed Chairman William McChesney Martin to Johnson’s Texas ranch where Johnson shoved him against the wall. Physically assaulting the Fed chairman is probably a greater threat to Federal Reserve independence than questioning the Fed’s policies on Twitter.

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While Johnson is an extreme example, history is full of cases where presidents pressured the Federal Reserve to adopt policies compatible with the presidents’ agendas—and helpful to their reelection campaigns. Presidents have been pressuring the Fed since its creation. President Warren Harding called on the Fed to lower rates. Richard Nixon was caught on tape joking with then-Fed chair Arthur Burns about Fed independence. And Lloyd Bentsen, President Bill Clinton’s first Treasury secretary, bragged about a “gentleman’s agreement” with then-Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan.

President Trump’s call for low interest rates contradicts Trump’s earlier correct criticism of the Fed’s low interest rate policy as harming middle-class Americans. Low rates can harm the middle class, but they also benefit spend-and-borrow politicians and their favorite special interests by lowering the federal government’s borrowing costs. Significant rate increases could make it impossible for the government to service its existing debt, thus making it difficult for President Trump and Congress to continue increasing welfare and warfare spending.

President Trump will have a long-lasting impact on monetary policy. Two of the three sitting members of the Fed’s board were appointed by President Trump. Two more of Trump’s nominees are pending in the Senate. The nomination of economist Marvin Goodfriend may be in jeopardy because Goodfriend advocates “negative interest rates,” which is a Federal Reserve-imposed tax on savings. If Goodfriend is defeated, President Trump can just nominate another candidate. President Trump will also be able to nominate two other board members. Therefore, by the end of his first term, President Trump could appoint six of the Federal Reserve’s seven board members.

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The specter of a Federal Reserve Board dominated by Trump appointees should cause some to rethink the wisdom of allowing a secretive central bank to exercise near-monopoly control over monetary policy. Fear of the havoc a Trumpian Fed could cause may even lead some to support the Audit the Fed legislation and the growing movement to allow Americans to “exit” the Federal Reserve System by using alternatives to fiat money, such as cryptocurrencies and gold.

Given the Federal Reserve’s power to help or hinder a president’s economic agenda and reelection prospects, it is no surprise that presidents try to influence Fed policy. But, instead of worrying about protecting the Fed from President Trump, we should all worry about protecting the American people from the Fed. The first step is passing the Audit the Fed bill, which Congress should do before adjourning to hit the campaign trail. This will let the people know the full truth about America’s monetary policy. Auditing, then ending, the Fed is key to permanently draining the welfare-warfare swamp.

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 www.ronpaulinstitute.org.

Did Tariffs Make America Great?

Pat Buchanan offers an American history lesson to remind us what made America the world’s greatest economic power in the first place. He explains it was economic patriotism that put America first, that made America first.

By Patrick J. Buchanan

“Make America Great Again!” will, given the astonishing victory it produced for Donald Trump, be recorded among the most successful slogans in political history.

Yet it raises a question: How did America first become the world’s greatest economic power?

In 1998, in The Great Betrayal: How American Sovereignty and Social Justice Are Being Sacrificed to the Gods of the Global Economy, this writer sought to explain.

However, as the blazing issue of that day was Monica Lewinsky and Bill Clinton, it was no easy task to steer interviewers around to the McKinley Tariff.

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Free trade propaganda aside, what is the historical truth?

As our Revolution was about political independence, the first words and acts of our constitutional republic were about ensuring America’s economic independence.

“A free people should promote such manufactures as tend to render them independent on others for essentials, especially military supplies,” said President Washington in his first message to Congress.

The first major bill passed by Congress was the Tariff Act of 1789.

Weeks later, Washington imposed tonnage taxes on all foreign shipping. The U.S. Merchant Marine was born.

In 1791, Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton wrote in his famous “Report on Manufactures”:

“The wealth . . . independence, and security of a Country, appear to be materially connected with the prosperity of manufactures. Every nation . . . ought to endeavor to possess within itself all the essentials of national supply. These compromise the means of subsistence, habitation, clothing, and defence.”

During the War of 1812, British merchants lost their American markets. When peace came, flotillas of British ships arrived at U.S. ports to dump underpriced goods and to recapture the markets the Brits had lost.

Henry Clay and John Calhoun backed James Madison’s Tariff of 1816, as did ex-free traders Jefferson and John Adams. It worked.

In 1816, the U.S. produced 840,000 yards of cloth. By 1820, it was 13,874,000 yards. America had become self-sufficient.

Financing “internal improvements” with tariffs on foreign goods would become known abroad as “The American System.”

Said Daniel Webster, “Protection of our own labor against the cheaper, ill-paid, half-fed, and pauper labor of Europe, is . . . a duty which the country owes to its own citizens.”

This is economic patriotism, a conservatism of the heart. Globalists, cosmopolites, and one-worlders recoil at phrases like “America First.”

Campaigning for Henry Clay, “The Father of the American System,” in 1844, Abe Lincoln issued an impassioned plea, “Give us a protective tariff and we will have the greatest nation on Earth.”

Battling free trade in the Polk presidency, Congressman Lincoln said, “Abandonment of the protective policy by the American Government must result in the increase of both useless labor and idleness and . . . must produce want and ruin among our people.”

In our time, the abandonment of economic patriotism produced in Middle America what Lincoln predicted, and what got Trump elected.

From the Civil War to the 20th century, U.S. economic policy was grounded in the Morrill Tariffs, named for Vermont Congressman and Senator Justin Morrill who, as early as 1857, had declared, “I am for ruling America for the benefit, first, of Americans, and, for the ‘rest of mankind’ afterwards.”

To Morrill, free trade was treason:

“Free trade abjures patriotism and boasts of cosmopolitanism. It regards the labor of our own people with no more favor than that of the barbarian on the Danube or the coolie on the Ganges.”

William McKinley, the veteran of Antietam who gave his name to the McKinley Tariff, declared, four years before being elected president:

“Free trade results in our giving our money . . . our manufactures and our markets to other nations. . . . It will bring widespread discontent. It will revolutionize our values.”

Campaigning in 1892, McKinley said, “Open competition between high-paid American labor and poorly paid European labor will either drive out of existence American industry or lower American wages.”

Substitute “Asian labor” for “European labor” and is this not a fair description of what free trade did to U.S. manufacturing these last 25 years? Some $12 trillion in trade deficits, arrested wages for our workers, six million manufacturing jobs lost, 55,000 factories and plants shut down.

McKinley’s future Vice President Teddy Roosevelt agreed with him, “Thank God I am not a free trader.”

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What did the Protectionists produce?

From 1869 to 1900, GDP quadrupled. Budget surpluses were run for 27 straight years. The U.S. debt was cut two-thirds to 7% of GDP. Commodity prices fell 58%. U.S. population doubled, but real wages rose 53%. Economic growth averaged 4% a year.

And the United States, which began this era with half of Britain’s production, ended it with twice Britain’s production.

Under Warren Harding, Cal Coolidge, and the Fordney-McCumber Tariff, GDP growth from 1922 to 1927 hit 7%, an all-time record.

Economic patriotism put America first, and made America first.

Of GOP free traders, the steel magnate Joseph Wharton, whose name graces the college Trump attended, said it well:

“Republicans who are shaky on protection are shaky all over.”

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.



U.S. Policies in Latin America Stupid

News today is “something like an adventure,” says Phil Giraldi: Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro is ruling by decree and ignoring the National Assembly while his people suffer due to the failing economy, and Ecuador’s president and close Washington ally Lenin Moreno intends to revoke the asylum granted by his predecessor to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. President Trump’s response to this South American chaos? He wants to “do justice” when it comes to Assange, meaning bring him to trial, and force regime change in Venezuela via U.S. military might. 

By Philip Giraldi

It is the first time in my lifetime that opening up the morning newspaper is something like an adventure. Last week I learned that the Donald Trump White House had considered a military intervention in Venezuela to remove the admittedly dystopic and despotic government of President Nicolas Maduro. For those who are not following developments in the Southern Hemisphere closely, the Venezuelan “Bolivarian” government is an odd mixture of South American old-style communism based on an aggressive populism that promotes class warfare. Political demonstrations over the past year protesting the deteriorating economy and the threat to what remains of the country’s democracy have been suppressed by violence initiated by heavily armed police in which dozens died. The National Assembly, which is controlled by the political opposition, is being ignored by Maduro, who is ruling by decree. Since he controls the security apparatus there is no one to tell him what he cannot do.

Venezuelans, sitting on huge oil reserves, are starving, unemployed, plagued by hyperinflation not seen since post-World War I Germany, and fleeing the country in the hundreds of thousands. Credit both internationally and domestically has vanished and foreign companies that had set up shop in the country, which refuses to allow them any longer to repatriate their profits, have fled, meaning that consumer goods once readily available have disappeared from the shelves.

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So Venezuela is indeed a basket case and a growing problem for neighbors in South America, but the ones who are suffering most are the Venezuelans themselves, who, one would think, should be the most likely candidates for removing their own government. Not so, according to President of the United States and Leader of the Free World Donald Trump, who, according to the reporting from advisers who actually sat in on the meeting, suggested that there might be a military solution to the problem, i.e., the United States should intervene to restore order and “democracy.” This discussion apparently took place nearly a year ago when the violence in Venezuela reached such a level that it appeared to be threatening to turn into something like a civil war in the country.

According to Associated Press, “As a meeting last August in the Oval Office to discuss sanctions on Venezuela was concluding, President Donald Trump turned to his top aides and asked them an unsettling question: With a fast unraveling Venezuela threatening regional security, why can’t the U.S. just simply invade the troubled country? The suggestion stunned those present at the meeting. . . .”

Trump’s aides reportedly discussed with him the dangers inherent in such a proposal, mostly in terms of costing support of Venezuela’s neighbors, who are already behind punitive sanctions to isolate Maduro’s regime and have been swamped with a refugee crisis. Intervening would also revive unpalatable memories of American incursions in various Latin American countries in the 20th century.

But Trump persisted in his support of a military incursion as a possible option, citing relatively recent Reagan-era interventions in Panama and Grenada as success stories. He also mentioned the possibility of an armed response in a press conference on the following day, a comment that predictably produced a wave of support inside Venezuela for Maduro.

Washington, which appears to have no actual overall policy toward Latin America, is also acting behind the scenes in neighboring Ecuador. As president of Ecuador, Rafael Correa, who is now retired from office, was generally remembered as a good leader for the Ecuadorian people, a vocal critic of Washington’s policy in Latin America, and, more particularly for his support of WikiLeaks’s Julian Assange. Since his replacement, Correa has been targeted by the Washington establishment as an enemy and there has been considerable pressure on his successor, Lenin Moreno, to bring Correa to trial for alleged crimes.

Moreno, a former Correa ally, has been currying favor with Washington by blocking Correa from being able to run again for the presidency. He has also turned on Assange, the Australian journalist who has for six years been residing in the Ecuadorian embassy in London under diplomatic protection arranged by Correa.

Moreno wants to revoke the asylum granted to Assange and has prevented him from continuing his journalistic activity by confining him to a tiny part of the building with only limited access to the outside world. Assange has gone from being a guest to being a prisoner in the embassy, and there is concern that he will shortly be expelled from the building, which will result in his immediate arrest by the British and his extradition to the United States where he would face life in prison.

Correa understood clearly that Moreno viewed him as part of the problem. Realizing that he and his family were in danger, he moved to Belgium, but an Ecuadorian court has now asked the Belgians to detain Correa on fabricated criminal charges and extradite him back to Ecuador for trial.

So far, the Belgians have not complied with the Ecuadorian demand, but if Washington gets behind it and quietly nudges Brussels, anything can happen. And, of course, the real story is Assange. Think what one might about Assange’s line of work, he is a legitimate journalist. He received information from whistleblowers and anonymous sources that he published when it was clear that the authorities and politically powerful were behaving illegally or unethically. He did not personally steal classified information and there is even some suggestion that WikiLeaks took care not to publish material that was damaging to individuals personally. Exposing political corruption in entities like Hillary Clinton’s campaign was, however, considered to be fair game, just as it should be.

Assange has been declared guilty without a trial by both the U.S. media and the inside-the-Beltway chattering class in the United States, and his conviction in what might pass for a court of law is a certainty. Ecuador appears to be willing to do what it can to help the process along.

Trump has indicated his belief in Assange’s guilt and stated his desire to “do justice.” The unprincipled response is one with the stated desire to invade Venezuela to sort things out.

Simple responses, all having to do with laying on punishment. That is what the foreign policy of the United States has become.

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.

Suppression of Piper’s JFK Book Exemplifies ‘Media Dishonesty’

Not only has the media buried Michael Collins Piper’s book, Final Judgement; even JFK researchers are too scared to touch his explosive book.

By Dr. Kevin Barrett

I began studying the JFK assassination in 1975. As a 16-year-old student at Pewaukee High School in Wisconsin, where then-librarian Charlotte Smith directed my attention toward such interesting and controversial authors as Immanuel Velikovsky, Erich Von Daniken, and Kurt Vonnegut, I was open to ideas outside the usual orbit. So when a friend invited me to Mark Lane’s talk on the JFK assassination years ago, my response was, “Mark who?” and then, “Sure, why not?”

Lane changed my life by presenting a convincing case that the Warren Commission was wrong: The president had been killed in a high-level coup d’état. The preposterous story of the “magic bullet” causing seven entry-exit wounds in two men, and the fact that Life magazine had reversed the frames of the Zapruder film to produce the illusion of a forward head snap supporting the official story that JFK had been shot from behind, amounted to a convincing prima facie case of establishment complicity.

During the days, weeks, and years after Lane’s talk I read extensively on the case. The upshot was that Lane’s “American coup” hypothesis was confirmed beyond a reasonable doubt. But the question of the identity and motives of the coup plotters was not so easily resolved.

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In 1979 I published an article in the University of Wisconsin-Madison student newspaper summarizing evidence of CIA involvement in the assassination. Before the article was published (but after I had submitted it to numerous outlets) a self-described “CIA assassination team member” showed up uninvited for dinner at the student housing co-op where I lived. This odd young woman claimed she had a CIA chip implanted in her brain, and that her job was to conduct reconnaissance against potential CIA assassination targets. When I recounted the bizarre coincidence to my favorite journalism professor, John McNelly, his response was blunt: “Kevin, they are messing with you.”

Truth Jihad, Kevin BarrettIt wasn’t until the mid-2000s, when I got interested in 9/11 and noticed the obvious role of Zionists in that event, that I sat down to read Michael Collins Piper’s Final Judgment. I had been marginally aware of the existence of Piper’s book for years, but for various reasons—including being busy earning a Ph.D. in an unrelated field, and noticing that the JFK research community didn’t seem to think that much of Piper—I had steered clear of it.

I quickly discovered that Piper had marshalled a strong case for Israel playing a key role, perhaps even the lead role, in the JFK assassination. Yet many leading JFK experts were strangely resistant to admitting this.

In 2007 I interviewed University of California professor Peter Dale Scott, a leading figure in both JFK and 9/11 studies and the main popularizer of the term “deep state.” The interview was broadcast live on RBN radio. Piper called in to the show and asked Scott what he thought about Israel’s role in the JFK assassination. Scott hemmed and hawed, saying (in essence) that he wasn’t convinced by the evidence assembled in Final Judgment. Since that evidence struck me as very strong, I wondered whether Scott’s discomfiture with Piper was driven by conscious or unconscious fear of “going there” and risking the kinds of attacks that would surely plague him if he endorsed Piper’s thesis.

Since Piper’s untimely death in 2015, the stature of his work in general, and Final Judgment in particular, has continued to rise. Some of the best minds of our time now recognize that Piper’s JFK work is indispensable.

Dr. Laurent Guyénot, the French historian and author of From Yahweh to Zion, is one of the key figures driving the resurgence of interest in Final Judgment. Guyénot shows that the methods apparently used by Zionist plotters of the JFK and RFK assassinations are a standard modus operandi that the same forces have used in dozens of other operations. From Yahweh to Zion puts the Kennedy assassinations in historical perspective, not only in terms of 20th and 21st century Zionist covert operations, but also in light of a larger history stretching back 2,500 years.

Another intellectual heavyweight promoting Piper’s work is Ron Unz, publisher of the indispensable alternative media digest Unz Review. Unz, who has done graduate work in theoretical physics at Cambridge and Stanford universities, recently published “American Pravda: The JFK Assassination: Part 1: What Happened? and Part 2: Who Did It?” In that two-part series, and in a radio interview with me, Unz argues that the “most extreme” example of media dishonesty surrounding the JFK assassination is the suppression of Piper’s Final Judgment—not just by the mainstream and alternative media, but also by most of the JFK research community.

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After spending 43 years (intermittently) researching the JKF assassination, I wholeheartedly agree.

*Michael Collins Piper’s massive 740-page Final Judgment: The Missing Link in the JFK Assassination Conspiracy is available in a handy two-book set for only $40 plus $6 S&H in the U.S. exclusively from AFP’s Online Store. Click here to learn more about Final Judgment and order from AFP.

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.

Is Putin’s Russia an ‘Evil Empire’?

Can the war-mongering neocons hell-bent on continuing conflict with Russia and attacking Trump as a “traitor” answer Buchanan’s question posed here? “Where, today, is there a vital U.S. interest imperiled by Putin?”

By Patrick J. Buchanan

“History repeats itself, first as tragedy, then as farce,” a saying attributed to Karl Marx, comes to mind in this time of Trump.

To those of us raised in the Truman era, when the Red Army was imposing its bloody Bolshevik rule on half of Europe, and NATO was needed to keep Stalin’s armies from the Channel, the threat seemed infinitely more serious. And so it was.

There were real traitors in that time.

Alger Hiss, a top State Department aide, at FDR’s side at Yalta, was exposed as a Stalinist spy by Congressman Richard Nixon. Harry Dexter White, No. 2 at Treasury, Laurence Duggan at State, and White House aide Lauchlin Currie were all exposed as spies. Then there was the Rosenberg spy ring that gave Stalin the secrets of the atom bomb.

Who do we have today to match Hiss and the Rosenbergs? A 29-year-old redheaded Russian Annie Oakley named Maria Butina, accused of infiltrating the National Rifle Association and the National Prayer Breakfast.

Is Putin’s Russia really a reincarnation of Stalin’s Soviet Union? Is Russia a threat of similar magnitude?

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Russia is “our No. 1 geopolitical foe,” thundered Mitt Romney in 2012, now cited as a sage by liberals who used to castigate Republicans for any skepticism of détente during the Cold War.

Perhaps it is time to contrast the USSR of Stalin, Khrushchev, and Brezhnev with the Russia of Vladimir Putin.

By the beginning of Reagan’s tenure in 1981, 400,000 Red Army troops were in Central Europe, occupying the eastern bank of the Elbe.

West Berlin was surrounded by Russian troops. East Germany, Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria were all ruled by Moscow’s puppets. All belonged to a Warsaw Pact created to fight NATO. Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Georgia, Ukraine were inside the USSR.

By the end of the Jimmy Carter era, Moscow had driven into Ethiopia, Mozambique, and Angola in Africa, Cuba in the Caribbean, and Nicaragua in Central America, in the greatest challenge ever to the Monroe Doctrine.

The Soviets had invaded and occupied Afghanistan. The Soviet navy, built up over 25 years by Adm. Sergey Gorshkov, was a global rival of a U.S. Navy that had sunk to 300 ships.

And today? The Soviet Empire is history. The Soviet Union is history, having splintered into 15 nations. Russia is smaller than it was in the 19th century. Russia is gone from Cuba, Grenada, Central America, Ethiopia, Angola, and Mozambique.

The Warsaw Pact is history. The Red Army is gone from Eastern Europe. The former Warsaw Pact nations of Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania, and Bulgaria all belong to NATO, as do the former Soviet “republics” of Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia.

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When the flagship of Russia’s navy, the aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov, sailed from Murmansk to Syria, it had to pass through the North Sea, the Channel, the east Atlantic, the Straits of Gibraltar, and then sail the length of the Med to anchor off Latakia.

Coming and going, the Kuznetsov was within range of anti-ship missiles, aircraft, submarines, and surface ships of 20 NATO nations, among them Norway, Britain, Germany, France, Spain, and Portugal, and many U.S. bases and warships.

Entering the Med, the Kuznetsov had to travel, without a naval base to refuel, within range of the missiles, planes, and ships of Spain, France, Italy, and Greece. Along the banks of the Adriatic and Aegean there are only NATO nations, except for Kosovo, which is home to the largest U.S. base in the Balkans, Camp Bondsteel.

To sail from St. Petersburg through the Baltic Sea to the Atlantic, Russian warships must pass within range of 11 NATO nations—the three Baltic republics, Poland, Germany, Denmark, Norway, Holland, Belgium, Britain, and France.

The Black Sea’s western and southern shores are now controlled entirely by NATO: Romania, Bulgaria, Turkey. Russia’s lone land passage to its naval base in Crimea is a narrow bridge from the Kerch Peninsula.

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With the breakup of the USSR, Russia has been reduced to two-thirds of the territory and half the population of the Soviet Union.

Its former republics and now neighbors Georgia and Ukraine are hostile. Its space launches are now done from a foreign land, Kazakhstan. Its economy has shrunk to the size of Italy’s.

It has one-tenth the population and one-fifth the economy of its looming neighbor, China, and, except for territory, is even more dwarfed by the United States with a GDP of $20 trillion, and troops, bases, and allies all over the world.

Most critically, Russia’s regime is no longer communist. The ideology that drove its imperialism is dead. There are parties, demonstrations, and dissidents in Russia, and an Orthodox faith that is alive and promoted by Putin.

Where, today, is there a vital U.S. interest imperiled by Putin?

Better to jaw-jaw than war-war, said Churchill. He was right, as is President Trump to keep talking to Putin—right through the Russophobia rampant in this city.

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. Both are available from the AFP Online Store.


U.S. Military Whistleblower Details U.S. Ties to Terrorism

What happens when a U.S. Army Special Ops officer learns his government is involved in financing terrorists and tries to blow the whistle? He’s sent to prison, where he writes a book and smuggles it out so the public will know what its government is up to. 

By Dave Gahary

In 2011, Scott Bennett was a second lieutenant U.S. Army special operations officer and psychological warfare analyst and worked in the highest levels of counterterrorism, intelligence, and politics in the State Department’s counterterrorism office to catch the bad guys.

When he uncovered that members of his own government were the bad guys, and were financing terrorists, he tried to blow the whistle. Hounded, persecuted, and eventually imprisoned for two years on trumped-up charges, Bennett wrote a book behind bars and smuggled it out of prison. Shell Game: A Military Whistleblowing Report exposes the betrayal and cover-up by the U.S. government and other elements, like the Clinton Foundation, Swiss banks, Saudi Arabia, and over 100 of our own representatives and senators.

Now Bennett is taking what he knows and traveling abroad, most recently to the No. 1 country in the sights of the Zionist war machine: Iran.

AFP’s Dave Gahary talks with U.S. Army special ops whistleblower Scott Bennett about his experience and his book, Shell Game: A Whistleblowing Report.

Bennett sat down with this newspaper to discuss his background and his time at the New Horizon Conference in Tehran last month. He joined 26 others in the ancient Persian city, including AFP columnist Philip Giraldi, formerly with the CIA, F. Michael Maloof, a veteran Pentagon employee stripped of his security clearance because of his success in finding the links between Saddam Hussein and al Qaeda (none), former State Department employees Peter Van Buren and J. Michael Springmann, and AFP columnist Kevin Barrett.

Shell Game is my experience in my report about the massive corruption that was going on,” he explained. “[That corruption] has led to one of the greatest crimes against the American people, specifically the financing and funding of terrorism, these Wahhabi Saudi Arabian terrorists, while lying to the American people and claiming that we’re fighting ISIS, when we’re not.

He continued: “We’re financing them, we’re equipping them, we’re aiding them, we’re training them. We’re giving them visas to come over from Libya to be trained in CIA operations at Fort Bragg. We’re then deploying them back into places like Syria and Libya and Afghanistan.”

Before they locked him up, Bennett submitted his report to the entire Congress. He shared what response he got.

“Not a single one did anything,” he told this newspaper. “Rand Paul was the only person to write me back, twice. He didn’t really do anything significant, but he did write me back acknowledging it. Everyone else ran away from it like a dog with its tail between its legs.”

Bennett walked away from the conference with a greater understanding of his hosts.

“I came away with the understanding this is a wonderful country [and] a wonderful people, and we are completely ignorant of this fact,” he said. “The deep state, intelligence, Zionist operations that have put Iran as the enemy of America, they’re the liars to the American people.”

He added: “The Iranian people are a very peaceful, pleasant people. They are nothing like what the media portrays them as. They are not warmongers, they’re not savages, they’re not violent, they are not chanting ‘Death to America,’ and they don’t hate Americans. All of that is propaganda.”

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 film about the attack on the USS Liberty. See the website erasingtheliberty.com for more information.

Trump Stands His Ground on Putin

The D.C. establishment is wailing hysterically over the prospect of President Donald Trump refusing to instigate Cold War II so desired by the elite. But does the potential loss of control by the War Party warrant the Beltway elite’s accusations of treason against our commander-in-chief and even apparent calls for a military coup? 

By Patrick J. Buchanan

“Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.”

Under the Constitution, these are the offenses for which presidents can be impeached.

And to hear our elites, Donald Trump is guilty of them all.

Trump’s refusal to challenge Vladimir Putin’s claim at Helsinki—that his GRU boys did not hack Hillary Clinton’s campaign—has been called treason, a refusal to do his sworn duty to protect and defend the United States, by a former director of the CIA.

Famed journalists and former high officials of the U.S. government have called Russia’s hacking of the DNC “an act of war” comparable to Pearl Harbor.

The New York Times ran a story on how many are now charging Trump with treason. Others suggest Putin is blackmailing Trump, or has him on his payroll, or compromised Trump a long time ago.

Wailed Congressman Steve Cohen: “Where is our military folks? The Commander in Chief is in the hands of our enemy!”

Apparently, some on the left believe we need a military coup to save our democracy.

Not since Robert Welch of the John Birch Society called Dwight Eisenhower a “conscious agent of the Communist conspiracy,” have such charges been hurled at a president. But while the Birchers were a bit outside the mainstream, today it is the establishment itself bawling “Treason!”

Kingdom Identity

What explains the hysteria?

The worst-case scenario would be that the establishment actually believes the nonsense it is spouting. But that is hard to credit. Like the boy who cried “Wolf!” the establishment has cried “Fascist!” too many times to be taken seriously.

A month ago, the never-Trumpers were comparing the separation of immigrant kids from detained adults, who brought them to the U.S. illegally, to FDR’s concentration camps for Japanese-Americans.

Some commentators equated the separations to what the Nazis did at Auschwitz.

If the establishment truly believed this nonsense, it would be an unacceptable security risk to let them near the levers of power ever again.

Using Occam’s razor, the real explanation for this behavior is the simplest one: America’s elites have been driven over the edge by Trump’s successes and their failure to block him.

Trump is deregulating the economy, cutting taxes, appointing record numbers of federal judges, reshaping the Supreme Court, and using tariffs to cut trade deficits and the bully pulpit to castigate freeloading allies.

Plot to Scapegoat Russia
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Worst of all, Trump clearly intends to carry out his campaign pledge to improve relations with Russia and get along with Vladimir Putin.

“Over our dead bodies!” the Beltway elite seems to be shouting.

Hence the rhetorical WMDs hurled at Trump: liar, dictator, authoritarian, Putin’s poodle, fascist, demagogue, traitor, Nazi.

Such language approaches incitement to violence. One wonders if the haters are considering the impact of the words they are so casually using. Some of us yet recall how Dallas was charged with complicity in the death of JFK for slurs far less toxic than this.

The post-Helsinki hysteria reveals not merely the mindset of the president’s enemies, but the depth of their determination to destroy him.

They intend to break Trump and bring him down, to see him impeached, removed, indicted, and prosecuted, and the agenda on which he ran and was nominated and elected dumped onto the ash heap of history.

Thursday, Trump indicated that he knows exactly what is afoot, and threw down the gauntlet of defiance:

“The Fake News Media wants so badly to see a major confrontation with Russia, even a confrontation that could lead to war. They are pushing so recklessly hard and hate the fact that I’ll probably have a good relationship with Putin.”

All Out War on Trump
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Spot on. Trump is saying: I am going to call off this Cold War II before it breaks out into the hot war that nine U.S. presidents avoided, despite Soviet provocations far graver than Putin’s pilfering of DNC emails showing how Debbie Wasserman Schultz stuck it to Bernie Sanders.

Then the White House suggested Vlad may be coming to dinner this fall.

Trump is edging toward the defining battle of his presidency: a reshaping of U.S. foreign policy to avoid clashes and conflicts with Russia, and the shedding of Cold War commitments no longer rooted in the national interests of this country.

Yet, should he attempt to carry out his agenda—to get out of Syria, pull troops out of Germany, take a second look at NATO’s Article 5 commitment to go to war for 29 nations, some of which, like Montenegro, most Americans have never heard of—he is headed for the most brutal battle of his presidency.

This Helsinki hysteria is but a taste.

By cheering Brexit, dissing the EU, suggesting NATO is obsolete, departing Syria, trying to get on with Putin, Trump is threatening the entire U.S. foreign policy establishment with what it fears most—irrelevance.

For if there is no war on, no war imminent, and no war wanted, what does a War Party do?

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. Both are available from the AFP Online Store.


President Pardons Jailed Ranchers

Good news for patriots across the United States! Front-page story of our most recent American Free Press. Not yet a subscriber? Click here for print subscription options or click here for digital options.

By Mark Anderson

President Donald Trump on July 10 signed presidential pardons for 76-year-old Dwight Hammond and his son Steven, 49—the embattled Oregon ranchers who suffered gross injustices after they were forced to serve consecutive prison terms despite being found innocent by a jury of the most serious charges. Their jailing eventually spurred the respected Bundy ranching family to protest the men’s plight at the Malheur nature preserve.

“The evidence at trial regarding the Hammonds’ responsibility for the fire was conflicting, and the jury acquitted them on most of the charges,” a White House statement said. “Justice is overdue for Dwight and Steven Hammond, both of whom are entirely deserving of these Grants of Executive Clemency.”

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The Hammonds, sentenced to five years in 2012 for that conviction, became the focal point of ranchers and others who oppose the federal government’s notoriously wasteful and costly mismanagement of massive tracts of Western lands to which it claims “ownership.” While mainstream media have simplistically claimed “they had set a series of fires on their ranch that spread to federal land,” in reality, the Hammonds started a “backburn” on their grazing land in Harney County, Ore. The controlled burn was lit, without malicious intent, to mitigate the impact of a totally separate fire on adjacent federal land that was headed their way.

In response to the Hammonds’ jailing, protesters, including the sons of famed Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy, occupied the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Harney County in early 2016. The mainstream media were quick to call it an “armed standoff.” However, the only use of firearms came when one of the occupiers, soft-spoken Robert LaVoy Finicum, died with his hands in the air in a hail of gunfire from state police and federal agents when he exited the driver’s seat of his vehicle at a police roadblock, while en route to a diplomatic meeting with area law enforcement.

Cliven Bundy, who became a focal point on the long, hard road he and scores of other ranchers have had to travel to expose and resist the overreach of the federal “landlord,” reacted to the news of the Hammonds’ clemency, telling AFP: “This is a great day for America, a great day for the ranchers in Oregon, and a great day for the Bundy family.”

Bundy explained: “The Bundy family didn’t have any vested interest in the Hammonds, except that they were ranching neighbors. My son Ammon called on local, county, state, and federal officials [about the Hammond’s plight]. Not one would respond

to his call. President Trump is the only man in these governments who responded to Ammon’s call and found the federal government’s criminal justice system was unjust.”

He continued: “The Hammonds sacrificed their ranch and money to attorneys and paid the federal government thousands and thousands of dollars, and LaVoy Finicum lost his life. The federal government cost my son Ammon $15 million. He had two thriving businesses; the federal government stepped in and told the people he was doing business with to stop doing business with Ammon. They weren’t just happy to put Ammon in jail and to murder LaVoy. They wanted to ruin people’s lives.”

Cliven summarized, “Shame on you, America, for allowing this to happen, and thank you, President Trump, for trying to make things straight.”

Mark Anderson is AFP’s roving editor.

Rand Paul: Former CIA Head Is ‘Bigoted,’ ‘Biased,’ ‘Unhinged’

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) was a breath of fresh air and common sense when he made the rounds on television talk shows yesterday to defend President Donald Trump’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

By AFP Staff

Republican senator from Kentucky Rand Paul appeared on a series of cable news talk shows yesterday to counter the ridiculous claims made by former CIA Director John Brennan that President Donald Trump should be charged with treason for not sticking up for U.S. intelligence.

On Fox News commentator Tucker Carlson’s show, Paul, who also happens to be the son of former Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas), blasted Brennan, saying, “You have to realize John Brennan started his illustrious career by voting for the Communist Party—you know, that’s who he wanted to win the presidency back in the ’70s—so he voted for the Communist Party.”

He added that Brennan “is one of the most powerful people in the world, who has the ability to destroy anybody in the world and gain information on anything you do . . . yet with all that power he was coming to work each day with a bias and a hatred of the president. It should worry us all. What other things he could possibly have been doing with that power?”

You can watch the full interview below. Then, after you hear what Paul has to say, please take a moment to tell us what you think in the comments section.


RFK Jr. Strikes at Deep State

Kennedy scion Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has penned a book calling for a new investigation into father’s assassination, and into Sirhan Sirhan’s guilt—or innocence—in that crime.

By S.T. Patrick

Early in the morning on June 5, 1968, Sen. Robert F. Kennedy lay flat on his back, bleeding onto the floor of the kitchen pantry at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles. He had just won the California Democratic primary and was exiting the hotel after a late-night victory speech when shots were fired, leaving six wounded, including Kennedy. He was pronounced dead 26 hours later. Sirhan Sirhan was blamed for the murder and is still serving time in a California prison today. For many historians and the LAPD, the crime of the RFK assassination has been solved. That may change, however, as Kennedy scion Robert F. Kennedy Jr. calls for a reinvestigation of the murder.

In his new book, American Values: Lessons I Learned from My Family, the third of Robert and Ethel Kennedy’s 11 children openly calls for a reinvestigation of his father’s assassination, which occurred when RFK Jr. was 14 years old. His sister, Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, concurs that the crime against their father deserves a reexamination.

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In December, RFK Jr. quietly visited Sirhan for three hours at the Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility outside of San Diego. He had also spoken to witnesses and read the autopsy reports. If he was going to decide to call for a reinvestigation, he was not going to do so without evidence.

“I got to a place where I had to see Sirhan,” Kennedy revealed to The Washington Post.

Kennedy left Donovan Correctional even more steadfast in the view that his father had been killed by a second gunman and not by Sirhan. It is a perspective on the case that researchers such as Lisa Pease, Shane O’Sullivan, and Bill Turner have shared for decades.

Pease was mentioned twice in American Values. She had shared an internal CIA report with Kennedy. The report stated that RFK and his brother, slain president John F. Kennedy, had not known about the CIA plots on the life of Fidel Castro. Journalist Seymour Hersh, by way of CIA officer Sam Halpern, had argued that the Kennedys authorized the plots. The CIA’s own inspector general report—the last copy of which had been kept in a safe by CIA Director Richard Helms—stated that the CIA had told RFK only about the anti-Castro plots that had ended and not about the plots that were ongoing. Pease believes that one of these plots was then turned around and used on JFK.

Many in the assassination research community have lauded RFK Jr.’s book as the first Kennedy strike against the deep state. Rev. Martin Luther King’s family has spoken about conspiracy in the assassination of MLK for years and have long questioned the guilt of James Earl Ray. John Kennedy Jr. and Caroline Kennedy never publicly advocated for a reinvestigation of JFK’s murder, and, until now, the children of RFK have kept similarly quiet.

In an interview with this writer, Pease discussed RFK Jr.’s entrance into the Kennedy research community.

“It was really important that those of us who are trying to tell the truth connect to each other,” Pease said. “So it was kind of inevitable that Bobby and the community would eventually connect.”

Pease, the author of the forthcoming A Lie Too Big to Fail: The Real History of the Assassination of Robert F. Kennedy, explained to this writer that the Sirhan family suffered just as much as the Kennedys. Because RFK would have viewed every person’s life as important, she argues that RFK Jr.’s new quest is as much about justice for Sirhan as it is about finding the truth about his father’s death.

An Act of State, by William F. Pepper
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Kennedy, now 64, is not the only person close to the case to call for a reinvestigation. Paul Schrade, who was shot in the head as he followed RFK into the pantry, is also advocating for a reopening of the case, as well as Sirhan’s innocence.

RFK was shot at point-blank range behind his ear. Sirhan was standing in front of him. At least 13 shots were fired. Sirhan’s gun held eight bullets.

While visiting Sirhan in prison would seem, to some, like a difficult, emotional act, Kennedy boiled the visit down to simple terms.

“My father was the chief law enforcement officer in this country,” Kennedy explained. “I think it would have disturbed him if somebody was put in jail for a crime they didn’t commit.”

Sirhan, now 74, has spent 50 years in prison for a crime he doesn’t remember. If RFK Jr. and his sister Kathleen can spur a deeper look into the case, Sirhan may finally be paroled after 30 years of failed attempts. For the son of the former attorney general, justice is what is sought.

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]

Trump Calls Off Cold War II

With media and Congress screaming that President Trump is acting “treasonously,” it’s valuable to consider a brief history lesson-reminder of U.S actions that might have caused Putin to respond as he has. Who is acting immorally?

By Patrick Buchanan

Beginning his joint press conference with Vladimir Putin, President Trump declared that U.S. relations with Russia have “never been worse.”

He then added pointedly, that just changed “about four hours ago.”

It certainly did. With his remarks in Helsinki and at the NATO summit in Brussels, Trump has signaled a historic shift in U.S. foreign policy that may determine the future of this nation and the fate of his presidency.

He has rejected the fundamental premises of American foreign policy since the end of the Cold War and blamed our wretched relations with Russia, not on Vladimir Putin, but squarely on the U.S. establishment.

In a tweet prior to the meeting, Trump indicted the elites of both parties: “Our relationship with Russia has NEVER been worse thanks to many years of U.S. foolishness and stupidity and now, the Rigged Witch Hunt!”

Trump thereby repudiated the records and agendas of the neocons and their liberal interventionist allies, as well as the archipelago of War Party think tanks beavering away inside the Beltway.
Looking back over the week, from Brussels to Britain to Helsinki, Trump’s message has been clear, consistent and startling.

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NATO is obsolete. European allies have freeloaded off U.S. defense while rolling up huge trade surpluses at our expense. Those days are over. Europeans are going to stop stealing our markets and start paying for their own defense.

And there will be no Cold War II.

We are not going to let Putin’s annexation of Crimea or aid to pro-Russian rebels in Ukraine prevent us from working on a rapprochement and a partnership with him, Trump is saying. We are going to negotiate arms treaties and talk out our differences as Ronald Reagan did with Mikhail Gorbachev.

Helsinki showed that Trump meant what he said when he declared repeatedly, “Peace with Russia is a good thing, not a bad thing.”

On Syria, Trump indicated that he and Putin are working with Bibi Netanyahu, who wants all Iranian forces and Iran-backed militias kept far from the Golan Heights. As for U.S. troops in Syria, says Trump, they will be coming out after ISIS is crushed, and we are 98% there.

That is another underlying message here: America is coming home from foreign wars and will be shedding foreign commitments.

Both before and after the Trump-Putin meeting, the cable news coverage was as hostile and hateful toward the president as any this writer has ever seen. The media may not be the “enemy of the people” Trump says they are, but many are implacable enemies of this president.

Some wanted Trump to emulate Nikita Khrushchev, who blew up the Paris summit in May 1960 over a failed U.S. intelligence operation–the U-2 spy plane shot down over the Urals just weeks earlier.

Khrushchev had demanded that Ike apologize. Ike refused, and Khrushchev exploded. Some media seemed to be hoping for just such a confrontation.

When Trump spoke of the “foolishness and stupidity” of the U.S. foreign policy establishment that contributed to this era of animosity in U.S.-Russia relations, what might he have had in mind?
Was it the U.S. provocatively moving NATO into Russia’s front yard after the collapse of the USSR?

Was it the U.S. invasion of Iraq to strip Saddam Hussein of weapons of mass destruction he did not have that plunged us into endless wars of the Middle East?

Was it U.S. support of Syrian rebels determined to oust Bashar Assad, leading to ISIS intervention and a seven-year civil war with half a million dead, a war which Putin eventually entered to save his Syrian ally?

Was it George W. Bush’s abrogation of Richard Nixon’s ABM treaty and drive for a missile defense that caused Putin to break out of the Reagan INF treaty and start deploying cruise missiles to counter it?

Was it U.S. complicity in the Kiev coup that ousted the elected pro-Russian regime that caused Putin to seize Crimea to hold onto Russia’s Black Sea naval base at Sevastopol?

Many Putin actions we condemn were reactions to what we did.

Russia annexed Crimea bloodlessly. But did not the U.S. bomb Serbia for 78 days to force Belgrade to surrender her cradle province of Kosovo?

How was that more moral than what Putin did in Crimea?

If Russian military intelligence hacked into the emails of the DNC, exposing how they stuck it to Bernie Sanders, Trump says he did not collude in it. Is there, after two years, any proof that he did?

Trump insists Russian meddling had no effect on the outcome in 2016 and he is not going to allow media obsession with Russiagate to interfere with establishing better relations.

Former CIA Director John Brennan rages that, “Donald Trump’s press conference performance in Helsinki . . . was . . . treasonous. . . . He is wholly in the pocket of Putin. Republican Patriots: Where are you???”

Well, as Patrick Henry said long ago, “If this be treason, make the most of it!”

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. Both are available from the AFP Online Store.


Russia or the Deep State: Who’s Really Undermining ‘Democracy’?

In politics, timing is everything. So what does that say about the deep state timing its indictment to break only days before President Donald Trump was to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin?

By AFP Staff

On July 13, three days before President Donald Trump was scheduled to hold his historic face-to-face with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, Finland, the Justice Department announced a grand jury had indicted a dozen Russian intelligence officers “for conspiring to interfere with the 2016 presidential election.” Of course, the mainstream media worked itself into a lather over the indictment of Russian spies who, realistically, will never be brought to justice. Missed in all of the rumpus, however, was the staging of the indictment, which was cynically timed to undermine a sitting president who openly admitted that the goal of the top-level meeting was to seek peace with a major, nuclear-armed foreign power.

It’s worth noting that the charges were not brought by the special counsel investigating possible Russian collusion with the Trump campaign. Instead, it was brought by the Justice Department’s National Security Division—the deep state—and announced by Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein.

Rosenstein, who lords over special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of possible Russian collusion with Trump’s campaign staff, was nothing more than a useful idiot in the announcement, seeking to take a swipe at Trump.

Of late, Rosenstein has come under increasing pressure for allowing Mueller to run wild and charge individuals with crimes unrelated to his purview. Earlier this month, congressional Democrats and never-Trump Republicans just barely fended off calls in Congress to impeach Rosenstein for failing at his job.

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According to last Friday’s indictment, prosecutors acknowledged that the Russians were working on their own—as spies do—and that no Americans knew they were communicating with Russians.

“The conspirators corresponded with several Americans through the Internet. There is no allegation in the indictment that the Americans knew they were communicating with Russian intelligence officers,” noted the press release issued by Rosenstein’s office on the indictment.

The charges only relate to spying work done by the Russians. They include:

Count One charges 11 defendants for conspiring to access computers without authorization, and to cause damage to those computers, in connection with efforts to steal documents and release them in order to interfere with the election.

Counts Two through Nine charge eleven defendants with aggravated identity theft by employing the usernames and passwords of other persons to commit computer fraud.

Count Ten charges the eleven conspirators with money laundering by transferring cryptocurrencies through a web of transactions in order to purchase computer servers, register domains, and make other payments in furtherance of their hacking activities, while trying to conceal their identities and their links to the Russian government.

Count Eleven charges two defendants for a separate conspiracy to access computers without authorization, and to cause damage to those computers, in connection with efforts to infiltrate computers used to conduct elections.

Finally, a forfeiture allegation seeks the forfeiture of property involved in the criminal activity.

No one should be naïve enough to think that countries do not spy on each other and attempt to influence politics in foreign powers, especially among rival nations. In fact, the U.S. government is probably the most skilled in that, having openly and brazenly meddled in the elections of dozens of countries and even toppled several over the course of the last few decades.

Russia is by no means innocent in this. The Kremlin has most likely been trying to influence U.S. politics for many years, which begs the question, why indict Russian spies operating on Russian soil just before the leaders of the U.S. and Russia are set to meet if for no other reason than to send a stark warning to these two men that the deep state will not stand by while the heads work to bridge the divide and promote peace between the two nations.

In a related news item, Putin did drop a bomb on the deep state that few media outlets have picked up on.

During a press conference, Putin unloaded on the U.S., saying that Washington should investigate how U.S. intelligence helped a billionaire fleece the Russian government and get out of paying $1.5 billion in taxes and then turn over some of that money—$400 million—to the campaign of Hillary Clinton. Putin then invited Mueller’s team to come to Russia to further its investigation so long as the U.S. allows Russia to look into the billionaire’s transactions.

In other words, while Russia is accused of mocking and trolling ignorant American voters, the U.S. deep state directly funded the campaign of a presidential candidate, which it preferred over the other.

So who really is undermining the United States democratic republic here?

Banking Syndicate Challenged

Monetary reformer Mickey Paoletta has cleared a key legal hurdle with the Pennsylvania Supreme Court in his effort to use a “King’s Bench” petition to beat mortgage fraudsters.

By Mark Anderson

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court on June 12 stamped the relevant documents and finally officially agreed to review a “King’s Bench” petition filed by a citizen under the auspices of noted monetary-reform activist Mickey Paoletta. This development represents a significant step forward in Paoletta’s 35 years of effort to expose the corrupt banking system and its allies in the legal field. But getting the high court to move this matter forward was grueling.

“They put us through pure hell for seven or eight days in a row, but they accepted it—reluctantly,” Paoletta told AFP, referring to what he and embattled York, Penn. homeowner-petitioner Christopher Inch experienced. “There’s corruption in the highest places, and more and more people know what’s up. They want it stopped.”

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According to Paoletta, the means of stopping it is found in the “King’s Bench jurisdiction”—a British common-law legal concept carried over to several states during America’s formative years, including the commonwealths of Pennsylvania and Virginia. The goal in Pennsylvania is to compel the high court to uphold the law and carry out broad oversight of the lower courts, and of those licensed to practice law, in order to stop, in blanket fashion, the torrent of fraudulent foreclosure proceedings against homeowners such as Inch.

This is explained in Inch’s petition being reviewed by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Section six of the petition states: “This petitioner makes application to this court to invoke its inherent supervisory power over this case [a lending company’s ongoing lawsuit versus Inch] and the other similar state cases and take corrective action over its licensed attorneys and inferior tribunals.”

Section seven adds that Inch petitioned the court “to grant an injunction on this conspiratorial enterprise, to grant relief in connection with an issue of immediate public importance that has affected thousands of homeowners and potentially could affect thousands more.”

Beyond the crucial element expressed in sections six and seven—intended to get the high court to accelerate relief for Inch and all other similarly oppressed homeowners in one fell swoop rather than one case at a time—the information in sections eight and nine is of paramount importance. It outlines for the court the “extrinsic fraud used to obtain a summary or default judgment” against homeowners whose homes are under foreclosure on the basis of “forged and fraudulent foreclosure documents.”

Section nine specifies that Inch, “through affidavits, exhibits and expert testimony can and will prove conclusively” that debt-collection law firms and various lenders, including banks, “participated in a deliberately planned and carefully executed scheme to defraud not only Inch but the Pennsylvania courts and the due process rights of this plaintiff [Inch] and thousands of others so similarly situated.”

Regarding the petition being reviewed by the state Supreme Court, Paoletta on June 21 told AFP, “They said we should have an answer in 45 to 60 days. But I have 30 to 35 people ready to file King’s Bench petitions if the high court declines to act further.”

Paoletta added that he’s broadening the scope of his efforts.

“Based on my research, it’s the Supreme Court’s duty in each state, not just Pennsylvania, to see that their inferior courts follow all the laws. My goal is to work with the leaders of the 50 states to get them thinking down the same path. And I did some extensive research and found you can do this with the U.S. Supreme Court for [overseeing] the federal district courts.”

He went on to say: “I cannot find one case in these 50 states where the banks and debt collectors did not engage in the production of forged and fraudulent notes in order to foreclose. We should be able to stop all judicial and non-judicial foreclosures. In a judicial state, such as Pennsylvania, they [the debt-collectors] have to file a complaint in state courts, but in non-judicial states, the debt-collectors and the debt-purchasers—which are one and the same in most cases—have the advantage, because the homeowners’ rights to a trial by jury in foreclosure cases are denied by the courts. In non-judicial states, you’ve already ‘agreed’ you’re in default when you sign the deed of trust. You’ve already given them the rights to your house and commenced judgment against yourself.”

Paoletta, who founded Mortgage Defense Systems in Mechanicsburg to shine a light on this fraud and help distressed property owners, believes that with this new approach, the American people can file these kinds of complaints even for property lost years ago through foreclosures. In other words, this bold quest for relief and justice could be retroactive.

Inch told AFP: “I don’t think the laws actually need changing much. If the lawyers and banks could be compelled to follow the laws on the books, much of this could be resolved. Despite Federal Reserve supervision and other oversight, when it comes to the foreclosure process, they know they’re dealing with people who don’t have money, are uninformed, or have broken life situations. The courts would not be so easily swayed by the banks and their lawyers if the homeowners and citizens knew the laws, knew their responsibilities, knew the corruption the banks are doing, and had the means to fight it.”

He concluded, “We need the public educated so it’s not just lawyers and banks pushing around poor people, but the people pushing back against this racket.”

Mark Anderson is AFP’s roving editor.