Category: Analysis
RESPONSE TO: Some Dems sizzle, others see their stock fall on road to 2020
| September 14, 2017 | 8:29 pm | Analysis, Bernie Sanders, political struggle | No comments
By A. Shaw
So, according to the article, there are already about 20 apparent “Dems” or DP candidates positioning for 2020.
Some “sizzle” while others “fall on the road.”
At this time, Sanders sizzles in first place with 28% of likely voters in all social classes and race/nationality.
Biden sizzles with 17%.
Warren sizzles with 12%
The remaining 17 or so DP candidates don’t sizzle.
 They fall on the road.
Ideologically, Sanders strives to represent chiefly the liberal sectors of working and middle classes. He is not indifferent to the interests of the capitalist class, but the interests of millionaires are not his primary concern.
Biden primarily wants to represent the center and liberal sectors of the bourgeoisie, the rest of society is not his primary concern.
Warren strives primarily to represent the liberal sector of the middle class. Still, she has a real interest in other classes, especially the workers
With the exception of Sanders, this field of DP candidates accepts the flawed principle that reality is whatever story is prominently and consistently reported in the capitalist [or cappie] media. So, this field hustles for coverage in the cappie press.
Thus, if propaganda appears in non-cappie outlets, it isn’t real. If the story appears in the a cappie outlet but it’s buried in back pages, it isn’t real due to the lack of prominence. If the story appears one day but vanishes the next, it isn’t real due to lack of consistency.
The tactic of most of candidates in the DP field is to get coverage in the cappie press, then use the coverage to reach out to sectors of social classes  that may effect the candidate’s campaign favorably or unfavorably.
In 2016, Trump showed how to use the social media with full force.
In 2016, Sanders showed a little bit how to use the campaign’s media for propaganda as well as fundraising.
Some Dems sizzle, others see their stock fall on road to 2020
| September 14, 2017 | 8:26 pm | Analysis, Bernie Sanders, political struggle | No comments

Some Dems sizzle, others see their stock fall on road to 2020

Some Dems sizzle, others see their stock fall on road to 2020
© Greg Nash

Several potential Democratic presidential candidates have seen their stock fall since the beginning of the year, while others have risen.

Sen. Bernie Sanders(I-Vt.) has seen rivals jump on to his single-payer health-care bill, while former Vice President Joe Biden is preparing a major book tour through key swing states.

Sens. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) and Elizabeth Warren(D-Mass.) have both generated headlines as Democratic opponents of President Trump who have been “shushed” by Republican lawmakers.

With so many Democrats fighting for attention, other rising stars seen as potential players in 2020, most notably Sens. Amy Klobuchar (Minn.) and Kirsten Gillibrand (N.Y.), have been crowded out of the spotlight.

And third-tier potential Democratic candidates such as Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe and Reps. Tim Ryan (Ohio), Seth Moulton (Mass.) and Rep. John Delaney (Md.), who has announced he is running for president, are yet to be taken seriously.

“You almost never hear their names come up in conversation, and when they do it’s almost met with a grin like, ‘Yeah, OK, that will never happen,’ ” said one top Democratic consultant. “There’s just no buzz around any of them, and you need some buzz.”

Gillibrand did win some attention by being the only senator to oppose Defense Secretary James Mattisnomination, and she has also earned some headlines with choice four-letter words about President Trump.

“If we are not helping people, we should go the f— home,” she said in June at the Personal Democracy Forum at New York University.

Earlier this month, Rolling Stone ran a piece with a headline that said Gillibrand was outsmarting Trump.

Klobuchar, for her part, is liked in Washington for her policy chops and an understated and underrated sense of humor.

Yet she risks getting overlooked by another potential candidate from Minnesota: Sen. Al Franken, who received good press for a book tour and raised questions during Attorney General Jeff Sessions confirmation hearing that led the former Alabama senator to recuse himself from the Justice Depatment’s investigation into Russian election meddling.

While Gillibrand stood to the side of Sanders as he offered his single-payer bill on Wednesday, Klobuchar, who is not a co-sponsor of the legislation, was giving a speech about Russia on the Senate floor.

Klobuchar’s office did not comment for this story.

It’s very early, with more than two years to go before the Iowa caucuses. Still, strategists say there’s a risk of being drowned out early in the “invisible campaign,” which is preceding what is expected to be a crowded Democratic race.

“In a field where 20-something people may show up in Iowa at the state fair, you really need to be in the top five,” said Democratic strategist Jamal Simmons. “If you’re in the top five, you’re in a good place to wage an incredible campaign.”

Polls consistently show the same front-runners.

A Zogby Analytics online survey conducted this month shows Sanders with a sizable lead among likely voters at 28 percent. Biden came in second at 17 percent. Warren came in third at 12 percent.

A poll conducted in June for Morning Consult and Politico showed that 74 percent of Democrats viewed Biden favorably, followed by Warren at 51 percent.

At the same time, the party has been craving “fresh blood”— Democrats who haven’t been on the scene and don’t have years of baggage weighing them down in a presidential campaign.

That desire could help potential candidates such as Gillibrand, Klobuchar or even Ryan, though they have plenty of competition in that space.

Harris, a new rising star on the scene, gained national attention when she was shushed by Republican senators in Senate Intelligence Committee hearings.

And Warren, who, like Sanders, has an established base of support but who would be a new candidate for president, gave the liberal base a battle cry with the “she persisted” line coined by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).

Candidates do face the risk of peaking too soon, says Democratic strategist Jim Manley.

At times in 2014 and 2015, it was Sen. Rand Paul (Ky.) who seemed like the Republican senator to watch for in 2016. Then he faded.

“Cycle after cycle, there’s always someone who is the flavor of the month,” Manley said.

Still, Democratic strategist David Wade, who served as a longtime senior aide to John Kerry, emphasized that candidates with an eye on 2020 should “always place a premium on patience and purpose.”

“Good candidates get their moment to audition on the national stage, and it takes patience because you can’t force the moment,” Wade said. “But it also demands purpose. Purpose is knowing what your candidate’s profile is and what lane they occupy.”

In the years before the 2004 Democratic primaries ultimately won by Kerry, “multiple candidates had their moment in the sun, and many melted,” Wade said.

To be competitive and stand out, lawmakers can develop an agenda, fill a federal war chest and travel the country building a fundraising network that can be transferred to a presidential campaign.

And with the fight over nominations and the contentious Trump agenda, lawmakers with the right speeches and tactics are uniquely positioned to break through quickly.

“I think it’s too early to discount people’s chances,” said Grant Reeher, the director of the Campbell Public Affairs Institute at the Maxwell School at Syracuse University. “I think the candidates that we’re thinking about for 2020 aren’t people we’re thinking about right now.”

Trump’s New Plan: CIA May Be Mulling Over ‘Regime Change Strategy’ Against Iran
| September 14, 2017 | 7:56 pm | Analysis, Donald Trump, Iran | No comments
Iranian president Hassan Rouhani arrives for a news conference in Tehran, Iran, May 22, 2017.

Trump’s New Plan: CIA May Be Mulling Over ‘Regime Change Strategy’ Against Iran


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Washington is apparently mulling over regime change in Iran, political Darius Shahtahmasebi told Radio Sputnik, adding that the US has a long record of targeting geopolitically weak countries. The analyst explained that given Tehran’s rich natural resources and influential allies, the US’s new anti-Iran strategy is likely to fail.

US President Donald Trump is considering a tougher strategy against Iran prepared by US top officials including Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and national security adviser H.R. McMaster. Speaking to Radio Sputnik, Darius Shahtahmasebi, an Iranian political analyst, author and lawyer, has not excluded that Washington has a regime change option on the table.

The new plan sounds like a set of “provocative measures” against Iran, Shahtahmasebi told Radio Sputnik, referring to “interceptions of Iranian arms” allegedly going into Yemen and more “aggressive” US Navy responses to potential confrontations with armed vessels of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.

“Those are some of the measures you may look at, but I also know that the US has basically set up a CIA office to implement regime change in Iran,” Shahtahmasebi emphasized.

The Iranian political analyst called attention to the fact that the US has a long record of targeting “militarily weak countries” that “don’t have significant backers.”

However, while Libya fell prey to Washington’s geopolitical ambitions, Russia’s intervention in Syria curtailed “the US’s ability to target Syria and Iran directly,” according to the analyst.

The assertive US foreign policy in Iran is nothing new, he said pointing out that Iran has been in Washington’s crossfires for decades.

“The only difference under Trump is that he is so much more open about it,” Shahtahmasebi said.

According to the analyst, Iran has become a sort of “scapegoat” for the US, which blames its own failures in the Middle East on Tehran — a “country with vast resources that plays by its own rules.”As for Trump’s stepping up of anti-Iranian sanctions, implemented to bring Tehran’s missile program to a halt, this strategy has already proven ineffective, the political analyst remarked, wondering if Washington’s efforts are actually aimed at creating “an Islamic version of North Korea” in the region.

In mid-August the Iranian Parliament voted for bolstering its missile program by increasing its funding from $300 million to $520 million. The decision came as a response to Trump signing the expanded package of sanctions against Iran, Russia and North Korea into law on August 2.

Given Iran’s rich natural reserves, and the international support it currently enjoys, it is unlikely that the new strategy proposed by top US officials will work, the political analyst believes.

He pointed out that many European countries and corporations have signaled their willingness to develop ties with Tehran and with good reason: Iran shares a lucrative gas field with Qatar. The latter used to be an American ally, but has recently been victimized by Persian Gulf monarchies, he noted, referring to the Qatar diplomatic crisis championed by Saudi Arabia.”Iran is also working closely with Turkey and strengthening its ties with Russia and might end up joining the so-called Shanghai bloc,” Shahtahmasebi stressed, citing Tehran’s bid to enter the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) jointly led by Moscow and Beijing.

It was reported in June 2017 that Russia and China back Iran’s full membership in the Eurasian security bloc.

“So the US could continue this demonization strategy and expand its proxy army… but it probably has to face the facts that Iran is emerging as a significant player in the region and it is actually developing some close friendships with some other important players,” the political analyst underscored.

According to Shahtahmasebi, the US and its allies, which “strongly [oppose] the expansion of Iran’s influence” in the region should actually blame themselves: The US invasion of Iraq in 2003 resulted in the toppling of the “most anti-Iranian regime” — the government of Saddam Hussein — and replaced it with the Shia-dominated government in the country.

Likewise, efforts to oust the Syrian government, as part of a plan to diminish Tehran’s influence in the region, have proven futile, the analyst stressed, adding that Iran has only scored new political points with the Syrians due to its support to Damascus.

“If the US wants to counter Iran it should, honestly, look for different strategies because so far Iran has been emerging as the victor,” Shahtahmasebi told Radio Sputnik.

On Tuesday, Reuters reported, citing sources familiar with the draft, that Defense Secretary Mattis, Secretary of State Tillerson, national security adviser H.R. McMaster and other top officials offered the US president a new Iran strategy at a National Security Council meeting on September 8.According to the report, the new strategy envisages increasing pressure on Tehran’s ballistic program and tackling Iran’s “malign activities” in Syria and Iraq and Yemen. The draft also urges tougher economic restrictions be imposed on Iran in case it violates the 2015 nuclear agreement struck by Tehran and the P5+1 group of countries, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

The draft strategy proposes that UN Navy forces “could react more forcefully” if “harassed” by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ armed speed boats: US commanders are now permitted to open fire at Iranian vessels in case they believe that the latter pose a threat to the lives of US crews.

Over the last few months US Navy forces have repeatedly come under heavy criticism from Tehran for “provocations” in the Persian Gulf. On September 10, the Iranian Navy reported that an Iranian missile boat sent a warning signal to a US Navy ship that closed in on a fishing boat in the region.

On July 29, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) said in a statement that a day earlier US aircraft carrier Nimitz and an accompanying warship approached Iranian military vessels firing warning flares. A week earlier the USS Thunderbolt patrol ship fired several warning shots at an Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps ship in the Gulf. The incidents were just a few in a series of episodes when US and Iranian maritime forces have come dangerously near conflict.

The Iranian-US relationship has been strained for decades. The US involvement in Iran’s domestic affairs started with a CIA-orchestrated coup d’etat in Tehran in 1953. The Islamic Revolution of 1979 marked the separation between Tehran and Washington and was followed by a series of restrictions Washington has imposed on the country since 1979. The Iranian nuclear deal concluded under Barack Obama eased US sanctions against Iran, which was reconsidered under the Trump administration.

Allende’s Last Stand Against US-Supported Fascism in Chile in 1973
| September 13, 2017 | 8:35 pm | Analysis, Fascist terrorism | No comments
A man takes part in a demonstration commemorating the 44nd anniversary of Chile's 1973 military coup, in Santiago, Chile, Sunday, Sept. 10, 2017.

Allende’s Last Stand Against US-Supported Fascism in Chile in 1973

© AP Photo/ Esteban Felix

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John Wight
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On 9/11 1973 Chile’s democratically elected president, Salvador Allende, perished, along with thousands of his supporters after the Chilean military, led by General Augusto Pinochet with the support of Washington, mounted a coup that succeeded in overthrowing his government.

For obvious though lamentable reasons this is the 9/11 anniversary that hardly makes the news, dwarfed by its more infamous counterpart, the terrorist attack unleashed against the United States in 2001.

However the significance of the fascist coup in Chile in 1973 cannot be overstated, as here ensued the world’s first experiment in that mass experiment in human despair more commonly known as neoliberalism. This free market economic doctrine was the brainchild of US economist Milton Friedman, developing it along with his disciples at the notorious school of economics at the University of Chicago in the 1960s and 1970s, which he headed.

Friedman, who died in 2006, was and is still considered a genius on the right of the political spectrum, his doctrine embraced by various right wing leaders and governments from the 1970s to the present day. The likes of the aforementioned Augusto Pinochet, along with Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher and Boris Yeltsin, embraced Friedman’s ideas and applied it them their respective countries with disastrous results for the working class and the poor of each.

In essence the most extreme, deregulated model of capitalism ever devised, neoliberalism changed the role of the economy from a servant of society to a tyrant ruling over it. Indeed it is an economic system and doctrine so extreme it requires a major economic and/or social convulsion — in other words a shock — to enable it to be applied with the minimum of resistance.

Thus we have the coup in Chile on 11 September 1973.

Exploring the aftermath of the coup in Chile in her peerless work, The Shock Doctrine, Canadian journalist Naomi Klein reveals, “For the first year and a half, Pinochet faithfully followed the Chicago [School] rules.” As a result, she goes on,

“In 1974 inflation reached 375 percent — the highest rate in the world…The cost of basics such as bread went through the roof. At the same time, Chileans were being thrown out of work because Pinochet’s experiment with ‘free trade’ was flooding the country with cheap imports.”

Salvador Allende, a Marxist intellectual and physician, by the time of his election as president in 1970 had been involved in Chilean politics for forty years, in which time he served as a senator, deputy and cabinet minister. He had also stood for the presidency three times and lost. His program for government was avowedly socialist — i.e. the nationalization of key industries, specifically copper, land reform, the introduction of healthcare, and redistribution of the nation’s wealth and income to the benefit of the workers responsible for creating it.

In his maiden speech to the Chilean Parliament as the nation’s president, Allende said:

“This is an unprecedented time, which offers us the material means of realizing the most generous Utopian dreams of the past. The only thing that prevents our achieving this is the heritage of greed, of fear and of obsolete institutional traditions. Between our time and that of the liberation of man on a planetary scale, this inheritance has to be overcome. Only in this way will it be possible to call upon men to reconstruct their lives, not as products of a past of slavery and exploitation, but in the most conscious realization of their noblest potentialities. This is the socialist ideal.”

However just as the Cuban people have experienced in their history, and as the people of Venezuela are experiencing now, there is nothing more powerful than the wrath of Washington-backed economic interests and oligarchs wherever and whenever socialist governments dare emerge in Latin America to challenge the right of the rich and business interests to rule.

The US president in 1970 was Richard Nixon, who in response to Allende’s election promised to “make the [Chilean] economy scream,” instructing the CIA to start working to undermine the country in order to pave the way for a military takeover. At the time US business interests in Chile were extensive, especially in the copper mining industry in which two US corporations, Anaconda and Kennicott, were major players.

Even more important than those US business interests, however, was Washington’s foreign policy priority of containing socialism and communism — a priority measured in its commitment to the War in Vietnam, thousands of miles from its own borders, at that time. When it came to its ‘own backyard’ in Latin America, where the Cuban Revolution of 1959 had inspired and catalysed socialism across the region, Washington’s determination to crush the ‘red menace’ was especially fierce.

Nixon’s Secretary of State (foreign secretary) was Henry Kissinger, a man with enough blood on his hands to have a river named after it. Of Allende’s election in Chile in 1970, he said:

“I don’t see why we need to stand by and watch a country go communist due to the irresponsibility of its people. The issues are much too important for the Chilean voters to be left to decide for themselves.”

Allende chose not to heed the advice of his friend and comrade, Cuba’s Fidel Castro, to arm the workers, having warned him against placing too much trust in his country’s military high command. It was a decision that would cost him his life. Having refused the offer of safe passage and exile from the country when the coup began, Allende shot himself rather than be taken alive.

In his farewell address, broadcast to the nation and the world over the radio with the sound of gunfire clearly discernible in the background, Allende said, “In this definitive moment, the last thing which I can say to you is that I hope you will learn this lesson: foreign capital, imperialism united with reaction, created the climate for the armed forces to break with their tradition… these are my last words. I am sure that my sacrifice will not be in vain; I am sure that it will at least be a moral lesson which will punish felony, cowardice and treason.”

Upon coming to power, General Pinochet unleashed a wave of terror and murder that none who witnessed it would ever forget. And yet right up the end of his life, Pinochet enjoyed the protection and support of the likes of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, darling of the right and like Pinochet a passionate champion of neoliberalism.

This article is dedicated to its countless victims.

The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Sputnik. 

Check out John’s Sputnik radio show, Hard Facts.

North Korea: What is to be Done?
| September 12, 2017 | 9:17 pm | Analysis, DPRK | No comments
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un

North Korea: What is to be Done?


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As North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has heightened tensions with an increasing number of long-range ICBM launch-testings, many experts struggle to comprehend Pyongyang’s motives. While more people fear that war is imminent, have we really reached the point of no return? Tom McGregor takes a closer look.

The public-at-large have been asking, “Is North Korean leader Kim Jong-un crazy?” Philippines President Roderigo Duterte had expressed such concerns when speaking on the phone with US President Donald Trump, according to leaked transcripts published by the Washington Post.

Kim Jong-un’s actions and words seem to be “begging for war” at the moment, and if he sparks war there’s little chance his regime will survive after the US and its allies respond with “fire and fury.”

Kim is beginning to alienate nations that have long maintained positive relations with Pyongyang. Beijing announced a few weeks ago that if North Korea invades another country, China will not defend them.Russian President Vladimir Putin refuses to recognize North Korea’s ‘nuclear status’ on the grounds Pyongyang “poses a security threat in Northeast Asia.”

In all likelihood, the United Nations Security Council will reach unanimous agreement with members including China and Russia agreeing to condemn North Korea’s actions.

Nevertheless, imposing more sanctions on North Korea, as well as deploying more troops and weapons to South Korea and Japan will not cause Kim to back down. So, what are the next steps: continue negotiations or force an ultimatum on Pyongyang that could lead to war?

Addressing negotiations’ limits

For more than five decades, Western powers have agreed to negotiations with North Korea but by looking at the results, little has been accomplished.

Pyongyang appears to utilize the “bluff and bluster” strategy. Create a geo-political crisis and request compromise from opposing forces, assuming they can be rewarded since other nations want to prevent war.

Historically, the method has proven effective, but tempting fate again with Trump in the White House could result in catastrophe for North Korea.

In the book, “Art of the Deal,” Trump highlights how bluffing can backfire when the other side stands unwilling to back up its threats with actions. Meanwhile, Trump suggests you should not bluff unless you are willing to lose if other side calls your bluff.Accordingly, President Trump is well-suited to tackle Kim Jong-un’s threatening manner. And it seems, Pyongyang understands its boundaries. They can threaten war, but should not launch missiles that strike territories that are aligned with Washington.

Yet, Kim’s continuous development of nuclear warheads should not go unheeded. Eventually, Pyongyang must dismantle its atomic armaments or risk more dire consequences.

Putin is the solution

Yes, we can resolve the North Korean conundrum, but all parties involved should shift tactics for better results. Washington, Seoul and Tokyo are perceived as bitter enemies to Pyongyang does not intend to work with them.

Meanwhile, ties between Beijing and Pyongyang have crumbled, since China had warned North Korea to stop ICBM testing. Chinese officials also lodged a formal complaint to the North Korean Consulate in Beijing as well.

So when resuming six-party talks (China, Japan, North Korea, Russia, South Korea and the US), Putin deserves recognition to serve as the leading mediator for all participants seeking a peaceful resolution.

The Western media would explode in outrage, but let common sense and logic prevail. Putin holds influence within Pyongyang and Beijing circles, while he can continue discussions with Washington, Tokyo and Seoul officials.

Putin has an incentive to support successful conclusion of six-party talks since Western powers will have good reason to dismiss economic sanctions against Russia under a new era of peace — Pax Putin.

Targets to aim for

Six-party talks can only end well if Pyongyang abandons its nuclear weapons. A reasonable compromise would be for either Moscow or Beijing to receive delivery of Pyongyang’s entire atomic armaments and allow UN (United Nations) inspectors to witness the full transfer.

Pyongyang may show initial reluctance, believing they risk losing everything in the long-term. But Western powers should sign a deal to declare support for the weapons’ transfer and withhold threats to spark regime change in North Korea.Washington, Seoul and Tokyo should also oppose “pre-emptive strikes” against Pyongyang. So long as North Korea does not launch invasions against rival nations, there’s no reason for Western powers to prepare for war against them.

Right now, Pyongyang feels cornered and high-level officials may have concluded that there’s no escape route for peace.

Putin as a mediator can play a crucial role to help Pyongyang understand that Russia and China will protect them from pre-emptive strikes or CIA-backed color revolutions in the country.

Meanwhile, the West needs assurances that Kim Jong-un does not hold unfettered access to nuclear bombs that can annihilate Seoul and Tokyo in just a matter of minutes.

The six-party talks can succeed, just as long as all participants seek peace as the end goal. We have not reached the point of no return, but time is running out if compromises from all sides cannot be reached soon.

By Tom McGregor, commentator and editor, based in Beijing

The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Sputnik.

KKE: Statement on the dangerous developments in the Korean Peninsula

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

KKE: Statement on the dangerous developments in the Korean Peninsula
The Press Office of the CC of the Communist Party of Greece issued the following statement regarding the dangerous developments in the Korean Peninsula:
“The KKE expresses its intense concern about the dangerous situation in the Korean Peninsular. The developments reflect the escalation of the economic and military competition and inter-imperialist contradictions in the entire Asia and Pacific region between powerful capitalist states and business interests, at an international and regional level. 

It is not the result of choices of the allegedly “crazy” leaders of the USA and North Korea, as is being deliberately cultivated by the mass media in order to conceal the real causes of the confrontation.These antagonisms between the USA, Japan, China, Russia etc. are related in particular to the new division of the markets, the exploitation of the energy resources, which are to be found in regions such as the Korean Peninsula, the South and East China Sea, the Arctic and elsewhere. All this results in the constant intensification of the dangerous arms race and even the possibility of a military conflict. The USA is also paving the way for the increase of the sales of modern armaments to Japan and South Korea, while maintaining powerful military forces (28,000 troops) and military hardware in their bases in South Korea. It is constantly conducting major military exercises with provocative scenarios for the invasion of North Korea.

It is no accident that from the very first moment, the new US administration of Trump, together with the goal of renegotiating large scale economic agreements, like the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP), turned its attention to this specific region, which is in the under-belly of China and Russia and is considered by China to be a region vital to its interests, as well as other regions of Asia that are on the “Silk Route”.All the above, together with USA’s large trade deficits in relation to China, influence the formation of an aggressive political line in order to defend the US monopolies.

The USA is in the dominant position amongst the capitalist states with a nuclear arsenal, which it has already used, while it is characteristic that very recently the USA, Britain and France absented themselves from negotiations for the signing of a treaty to ban nuclear weapons, with the excuse that this is not compatible with the realities of the international security environment. At the same time, NATO is talking openly at its summits about the possibility of using nuclear weapons. Consequently, the USA’s entreaties about the nuclear programme of North Korea are enormously hypocritical and serve as an alibi, the moment when the USA and other capitalist states, like Britain, France, Pakistan, India etc possess nuclear weapons.

The USA invokes the nuclear threat from both North Korea and Iran in order to install its so-called “anti-missile shield” both in the Pacific and in Europe, while in collaboration with the EU it follows the path of overthrowing or supporting governments in line with its own interests and imposes sanctions that target the peoples. In addition, it is once again reinforcing its military presence in Afghanistan, with its attention turned towards China and also Russia. The same is also true regarding the concentration of NATO troops in the Baltic.

On its part, Russia is taking a position against these plans, which objectively serve the aim of impeding a possible response by Russia, in the instance when the USA and NATO alliance attempt a “first nuclear strike”.

The USA is utilizing the stance of North Korea to develop its own nuclear programme, to promote its geostrategic interests in the region and more generally. However, the brutal crime the USA committed 72 years ago, with the nuclear destruction in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, as well as the long-term consequences of this crime, demonstrate that the solution is not to be found in the development of nuclear weapons. It is no accident the first workers’ state in the world, the USSR, had abandoned the first nuclear strike and played a leading role for a world without nuclear weapons.

The exacerbation of the situation in the Korean Peninsular will not change or reduce the tension in the Eastern Mediterranean and the Middle East. This is not only because the consequences of a possible military clash, with the use of nuclear weapons indeed, will be global, but because in the final analysis we are talking about fragile inter-imperialist “balances” and a geopolitical “domino set” that is unfolding on an international level, from the Baltic, Black Sea and Eastern Mediterranean to Africa, Asia and the Pacific.

This is not the first time the USA has focused on this region. It played the leading role in the Korean War from 1950 to 1953, which led to over half a million dead and to the dismemberment of the country. In any case, it should not be forgotten that Greece sent troops to participate in the imperialist military intervention in Korea, with over 180 Greeks being killed and 600 wounded. This was the choice of the Greek bourgeois class and its representatives.

The Greek government, with the support of the official opposition and the other bourgeois parties, is undertaking enormous responsibilities, as it participates in and agrees with the decisions and dangerous plans of NATO, serving the interests of the local bourgeois class, as all the bourgeois governments have done up until today. It places enormous emphasis on the role of Greece in the framework of the alliance, in the name of the country’s “geostrategic enhancement”.It has just recently agreed to expand the base at Souda and other military bases and infrastructure for the operations of the USA, NATO and the EU. It continues Greece’s contribution to the enormous NATO budget and integrates the armed forces even more deeply into the imperialist plans, intensifying the competition with Turkey.

Various mass media, as well as politicians, utilize the situation around the nuclear issue related to North Korea, not only slandering the struggle of the peoples for a world without the exploitation of man by man as a whole, but also in order to prepare the ground so that our people accept a military intervention by the USA and NATO in North Korea, under the pretexts of “restoring democracy” and “dealing with weapons of mass destruction”, which were also utilized in other imperialist interventions, such as in Iraq. The KKE supports the position that it is exclusively a matter for the people of each country to decide on the economic, social and political regime they will have, and also whether they will change it, through their own organization and struggle.

The developments impose vigilance, the intensification of internationalist solidarity and the strengthening of the struggle against the imperialist interventions and wars, against nuclear weapons. This struggle is integrally linked to the struggle for bread and wages, against capital and its governments, whatever shade of bourgeois government they may be. It is linked to the struggle against the imperialist unions, like NATO, the EU, as well as against others in Asia and elsewhere, against the capitalist system of exploitation and the power of capital, which, as history has shown, does not hesitate to commit all kinds of crimes against the peoples in order to overcome the sharpening contradictions and major problems, in order to achieve its goals and to safeguard its dominance.”


Lost, Not Found: Raft of CIA Files on Lee Harvey Oswald Has ‘Gone Missing’
| September 11, 2017 | 8:17 pm | Analysis | No comments
Surrounded by detectives, Lee Harvey Oswald talks to the press as he is led down a corridor of the Dallas police station for another round of questioning in connection with the assassination of US President John F. Kennedy, November 23, 1963.

Lost, Not Found: Raft of CIA Files on Lee Harvey Oswald Has ‘Gone Missing’

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An independent researcher has found a set of CIA files on Lee Harvey Oswald, the alleged assassin of President John F. Kennedy, has gone missing.

By law, all of the US government’s files on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy must be released by October 26, 2017. One batch of records won’t be among them — namely, a specific set of CIA files on alleged assassin Lee Harvey Oswald.

The records were part of a seven-volume file on Oswald, held by the Agency’s Office of Security — a division responsible for protecting CIA property and vetting agency personnel, which maintains a file system independent of the CIA’s Central File Registry.

Declassified CIA records show that one set — Volume 5 — is missing. The disappearance, discovered by JFK researcher Malcolm Blunt, is significant — the OS was the first division of the CIA to open a file on Oswald.

The release in July of 3,810 CIA and FBI documents on the assassination by the Assassination Records Review Board threw up a number of revelations that JFK researchers have hungrily devoured and enthusiastically publicized. For instance, the mayor of Dallas at the time of Kennedy’s assassination, Earle Cabell, was a CIA asset in the 1950s, and his brother, Charles Cabell, a high-ranking CIA official until 1962.
They also indicate official investigations into the assassination, such as the 1964 Warren Commission, were effectively “controlled’ by top CIA officials, including top counter intelligence chief James Jesus Angleton — and interviewed CIA agents deliberately concealed from investigators what top CIA officers, including Angleton, knew about Oswald while JFK was still alive.
​However, evidently what the files did not and will not contain will likely be of far greater interest to conspiracy theorists.

Vanishing Point

At the very least, the disappearance of part of Oswald’s first CIA file is peculiar — if not outright suspicious. The individual — an ex-marine who ostensibly defected to the Soviet Union 1958 — 1960, was of considerable, constant interest to Angleton and CIA staff in the four years prior to November 22 1963.

The opening of Oswald’s OS file in December 1959 was a bizarre deviation from standard CIA practice — standard procedure, as set out by agency directives, required agency personnel to open a personality file (a “201 file”) on a military defector such as Oswald. Despite this, the CIA’s 201 file on Oswald was not opened until a year later, in December 1960.

The CIA didn’t share this fact with Warren Commission investigators in 1964, and when the delay was discovered by the House Select Committee on Assassinations in 1978, neither Angleton nor his then-boss, Deputy CIA director Richard Helms, could explain it.

Obfuscation ‘For A Reason’

Blunt believes the disappearance of the records amounts to deliberate obfuscation “for a reason” — done due to an internal interest in Oswald’s records. Bizarrely, the CIA claim Volume 5 never existed, despite records found by Blunt indicating CIA officials and congressional investigators had access to it.

Such assertions can only add to already sizeable doubts about the official verdict in the landmark case. Both general publics the world over and major international political figures have consistently doubted that Oswald acted alone — in respect of the latter, President Lyndon Johnson, First Lady Jackie Kennedy, Robert Kennedy, French president Charles DeGaulle, and Cuban leader Fidel Castro all concluded  JFK was slain by his political enemies, not a “lone nut” assassin.

Furthermore, three of the Warren Commission’s seven members — Senator John Sherman Cooper of Kentucky, Congressman Hale Boggs of Louisiana and and Senator Richard Russell of Georgia — doubted the inquiry’s single shooter conclusion.

Innumerable assassination conspiracy theories have circulated almost ever since the event — most popularly, it is suggested JFK was killed in a plot engineered by CIA agents. Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson, Mossad, the FBI, the Secret Service, the Mafia and Cubans (whether directed by Fidel Castro, or anti-Castro rebel groups) have all been named as potential directors and/or conspirators in the assassination.