Tuesday, October 11, 2016

UPDATE-2: Peeling the onion of propaganda

In the last post in the 'Thing Break Down' series we briefly explored why I think the U.S. election is a complete fraud. It was really all I could stomach writing at the time, but there will be a part 4 which will explore beyond the election into what an empire that breaks down looks like.

However, while I prepare that content a recent Twitter exchange has inspired me to go a bit deeper into the propaganda being deployed against an unsuspecting western populace that is at the moment obsessed with despising Donald Trump.

The fact that someone with as despicable a character as Donald Trump is running in this election should be raising a few eyebrows, and I am convinced it is no coincidence. People hate Donald Trump, absolutely hate him, with a passion. This is a hugely emotional response and I believe that the status-quo is milking that for all it's worth. When you despise someone you are not inclined to listen to evidence that may defend them, you will be inclined to believe anything and everything you hear about them because why not right? Even if it's not true so what? It's not like you'd care.

You should care though, that attitude of not critically examining incoming information even if it may oppose your emotional viewpoint provides the groundwork to layer other lies on top of it that may support nefarious agendas.

The latest propaganda to further efforts of war with Russia comes from Newsweek and the last paragraph really caught my eye as it truly reveals the intention of the article. It's not about Donald Trump at all, it's about Russia, U.S. interests and.. Israel?. Let's take a look.
For now, though, Americans should be outraged. This totalitarian regime, engaged in what are arguably war crimes in Syria to protect its government puppet, is working to upend a democracy to the benefit of an American candidate who uttered positive comments just Sunday about the Kremlin's campaign on behalf of Bashar al-Assad. Trump’s arguments were an incomprehensible explication of the complex Syrian situation, which put him right on the side of the Iranians and Syrians, who are fighting to preserve the government that is the primary conduit of weapons used against Israel.
 Very last paragraph, the author throws everything and the kitchen sink at you. Observe the language being used, the claims being made. "regime", "working to upend democracy". Much as Chris Martenson wrote in his extremely important MUST READ post on the propaganda strategy being deployed here you'd have to forget everything that has happened in the last 5 years to believe this. I'd bet that if much of this propaganda wasn't riding on the hatred of Donald Trump people wouldn't believe it.

But fuckin' Donald Trump, Am I right?

After the Newsweek article had already gained popular support the Washington Post, and The Intercept have come out with information that counters, or at least demonstrates that Donald Trump wasn't "fed the information from the Kremlin" much as the author would have you believe and that it's likely that Sputnik having realized their mistake and misinterpretation of the email removed it. The only one still running with this farce is Newsweek, but that's enough to trigger the mob (herd?) mentality needed to sew the idea that evil Russia is bein' all aggressive again.

The Trump-Putin link that wasn’t
But Sputnik either misread or misrepresented the contents of the email. The original makes clear that Blumenthal was passing along a news article — from Newsweek, by Eichenwald — and not sharing his own thoughts. (In fact, the original email suggests that Blumenthal was passing along the article because it mentions himself, if for no other reason.) This isn't a “falsification” of the email, as Eichenwald puts it, since the email is there in the batch. In the most charitable interpretation, it's a sloppy misreading of it. 
At about 6 p.m. Eastern, Trump was scheduled to take the stage at a rally in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. During his speech, he pulled a piece of paper out of his pocket and said, “This just came out a little while ago.” The “this” appears to have been the alleged confession by Blumenthal that was misreported by Sputnik. The crowd, as Eichenwald notes, began to boo Hillary Clinton. 
How could Trump have gotten that? He could have gotten a secret message from a KGB agent posing as a hot dog vendor in the rally arena, the two surreptitiously meeting after Trump gave the appropriate hand signal. Or maybe one of his allies, who follows Sputnik, saw the article and was like, “Hey, Donald, check this out.”
Read that Newsweek article and observe how the author insults Russia. He calls their hackers stupid, their plans stupid, like they're a bunch of fools bumbling around despite the fact that none of the claims of Russian involvement have been proven and the stupid Russians have been quite effective of halting U.S. ambitions in Syria with nearly surgical precision while the U.S. has struggled to keep their bullshit story consistent. If you need a history lesson in what has lead to the situation with Russia and Syria I'll let the Council on Foreign Relations explain it to you again (from the time before the "ISIS" narrative took hold):
Al-Qaeda is not sacrificing its "martyrs" in Syria merely to overthrow Assad. Liberation of the Syrian people is a bonus, but the main aim is to create an Islamist state in all or part of the country. Failing that, they hope to at least establish a strategic base for the organization's remnants across the border in Iraq, and create a regional headquarters where mujahideen can enjoy a safe haven. If al-Qaeda continues to play an increasingly important role in the rebellion, then a post-Assad government will be indebted to the tribes and regions allied to the Jabhat. Failing to honor the Jabhat's future requests, assuming Assad falls, could see a continuation of conflict in Syria. 
Thus far, Washington seems reluctant to weigh heavily into this issue. In May 2012, U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta publicly accepted al-Qaeda's presence in Syria (Guardian). And in July, the State Department's counterterrorism chief, Daniel Benjamin, rather incredulously suggested that the United States will simply ask the FSA to reject al-Qaeda. The unspoken political calculation among policymakers is to get rid of Assad first—weakening Iran's position in the region—and then deal with al-Qaeda later.
Remember that? Trump's statement that "Assad is fighting ISIS" is 100% accurate. Russia is also fighting ISIS. There is only one actor in this theatre of war that isn't fighting ISIS, and that's the U.S. and Putin takes every opportunity to point this out. There is a reason why Russian media relations have been so successful in the last few years and that is because their propaganda has a much stronger grounding in truth while the west's is sloppy and inconsistent and relies on irrational emotional drivers, like the hatred of Trump, to ensure nobody stops and thinks too hard about what it is they are being told.

Obama administration considering strikes on Assad, again

But fuckin' Donald Trump, Am I right?

You see, the U.S. doesn't have the truth on it's side regarding Russia, or Syria, what it does have however is that disgusting lump Donald Trump who is an expert actor whose best character just happens to be Donald Trump. And there is nothing Donald Trump loves to do better than play up Donald Trump. A person no one likes and says a lot of bullshit with a little bit of truth mixed in but it is these aspects of truth which the U.S. is attempting to associate with Donald Trump. Discredit Trump, and you discredit everything he has ever said, true or not. You see how that works?

This is why I said it should be no surprise that the U.S. state department is trying to tie Trump to Russia, because the anti-establishment views he is expressing are also now being tied to Russia. Suddenly now if you speak out against U.S. actions in Syria you must be a "Russian sympathizer", yadda yadda, even if you were saying the same things 4 years ago that you are today long before Russia's involvement, long before ISIS, long before "chemical weapons", or failing to convince the American people it's in their best interest to overthrow Assad. The U.S. story has changed so much over the last 5 years you'd almost think it's a different war. It's not.

The same motivations driving the war then, drive it now. The U.S. is still violating international law by operating in Syria. The U.S. is still supporting terrorists to overthrow Assad. Israel is still utilizing the war to expand their territory and cement their position in the Golan Heights - also against international law. None of this has changed.

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Richard Fantin is a self-taught software developer who has mostly throughout his career focused on financial applications and high frequency trading. He currently works for CenturyLink

Nazayh Zanidean is a Project Coordinator for a mid-sized construction contractor in Calgary, Alberta. He enjoys writing as a hobby on topics that include foreign policy, international human rights, security and systemic media bias.

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