February 2017

Trump speaks with China’s Xi

Agrees to uphold ‘One China’ policy

Friday 10 February 2017 In a phone conversation with Chinese President Xi Jinping, US President Donald Trump has vowed to honor Beijing’s “One China” policy, the White House said. The two leaders exchanged state visit invitations in a sign of improving ties. (More)

Trump holds up a mirror on American violence

as O'Reilly plays Pentagon Russia-bashing tune

‘You think our country is so innocent?' Trump asks after O’Reilly calls Putin ‘a killer’

Monday 6 February 2017 (RT) — The U.S. is not as innocent as it may seem to the uninformed, according to President Donald Trump. When Fox News television host Bill O’Reilly called Vladimir Putin “a killer,” Trump responded: “We’ve got a lot of killers.” (More)

U.S. senate puppets of military/industrial complex

try to block Trump from making peace with Russia

US senators trying to gain veto power that could block Trump from lifting sanctions on Russia

Wednesday 08 February 2017 (RT) A group of prominent US senators is leading a bipartisan effort to push through the so-called Russia Review Act, which would allow the Senate to veto any attempt of newcomer President Donald Trump to loosen sanctions on Moscow. (More)

Guest Editorial

Billionaire George Soros has them parading in the streets

(Please see below)

Banning people is wrong, but killing them is even worse

Where was liberal-left when millions were killed and

injured by imperialist aggression in the Middle East?

By Neil Clark

Neil Clark is a journalist, writer, broadcaster and blogger. He has written for many newspapers and magazines in the UK and other countries including The Guardian, Morning Star, Daily and Sunday Express, Mail on Sunday, Daily Mail, Daily Telegraph, New Statesman, The Spectator, The Week, and The American Conservative. He is a regular pundit on RT and has also appeared on BBC TV and radio, Sky News, Press TV and the Voice of Russia. He is the co-founder of the Campaign For Public Ownership @PublicOwnership. His award winning blog can be found at www.neilclark66.blogspot.com. He tweets on politics and world affairs @NeilClark66/st

Wednesday 01 February 2017 (RT) Such is the 'Sorosification' of the Western liberal-left that to impose controls on immigration is now regarded as a more heinous crime than launching brutal, imperialist wars of aggression, which are a prime cause of the significant level of migration from the Middle East. At the same time, the people who create and propagandize for destructive wars for economic gain against countries of the global south, are regarded as less reprehensible than those who advocate visa restrictions, especially if they come out and condemn visa restrictions.

Liberals, for instance, fawned over the former Secretary of State Madeline Albright when she said she "stands ready" to "register as Muslim" in "solidarity" against Trump. The very same Madeline Albright once declared that the death of half a million (predominantly Muslim) children in Iraq due to sanctions was a price that was "worth it."

Even though he wasn’t responsible for the regime-change wars that caused the migrant crisis, and has promised a less meddlesome foreign policy, Trump should at least acknowledge that the U.S. has a moral obligation to take in refugees from countries that the U.S., under previous administrations, has set out to destabilize.

Serial warmonger John McCain has also come out to blast Trump’s executive order. He’s the man who, when asked what he was going to do about Iran if elected president, sang "Bomb, bomb, bomb Iran," to the Beach Boys tune Barbara Ann.

In 2015, a report called Body Count, the Physicians for Social Responsibility, Physicians for Global Survival and International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, revealed that at least 1.3 million people had lost their lives in the U.S.-led ‘war on terror’ in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan.’ As I wrote at the time: As awful as that sounds, the total of 1.3 million deaths does not take into account casualties in other war zones, such as Yemen — and the authors stress that the figure is a “conservative estimate.” (More)

U.S. Senate confirms Tillerson as secretary of state

He opposed Russia sanctions; Exxon pays $180 million 

By Patricia Zengerle

WASHINGTON (Reuters) Wednesday 01 February 2017 — The U.S. Senate confirmed Rex Tillerson as President Donald Trump's secretary of state on Wednesday, filling a key spot on the Republican's national security team despite concerns about the former Exxon Mobil Corp chief executive officer's ties to Russia.

The vote, mostly along party lines, was by far the closest in at least half a century.

Fifty-six senators backed Tillerson, and 43 voted no. Every Republican favored Tillerson, along with four members of the Democratic caucus, Senators Heidi Heitkamp, Joe Manchin and Mark Warner as well as Angus King, an independent. (More)

Kiev renegades had bet the house on Clinton, now

backed into a corner, they fake a futile war with rebels

But there’s a new sheriff in town. One who apparently has no time for the consensus which has dominated since 1945. Which amounts to 'Russia is only useful when it’s weak.'

By Bryan MacDonald, an Irish journalist, who is based in Russia

Thursday 2 February 2017 The old journalistic maxim, “report what you know and stick to the facts,” has been difficult to honor during the Ukraine conflict. Because while every military confrontation has a “fog of war,” this firefight has gone further.

It has a sort of "cloud of war.” And a big thick and grey one at that, which envelopes everyone who tries to penetrate it in all sorts of mud, grime and manure.

At this point, almost all observers who’ve touched it have shipped a soiling or six, and that’s why everyone — except the poor, unfortunate locals caught up in the battlegrounds — felt relieved when the matter appeared to have become frozen after the Minsk accords. And a nod seemed as good as a wink for quite some time.

However, now the situation has changed. And dramatically at that. From 2014, until two weeks ago, the demarcation line was clear. The Kiev regime was supported by, and propped up by, the Obama administration in Washington. And the ethnic Russian rebels they fought were backed from Moscow.

While Obama undoubtedly regarded Ukraine as an unwanted headache, he deferred to powerful figures who had skin in the game. Like Joe Biden, whose family has business interests there, and Victoria Nuland, an ideologue who helped foment the Maidan movement and chose the subsequent rulers in Kiev (spending more than $5 billion for regime change there — Ed.).

There was also bi-partisan support from the likes of John McCain and other Republicans, who still adhered to Bush-era principles regarding NATO expansion. Not to mention the “containment” of Russia and the long-standing desire to prevent any potential rapprochement between Moscow and other European states, notably Germany, which might threaten US hegemony in the region.  

Fresh Ideas

But now there’s a new sheriff in town. One who apparently has no time for the consensus which has dominated since 1945. Which amounts to “Russia is only useful when it’s weak.”

Today, in Donald Trump’s view, the biggest threats to American security don’t emanate from the Kremlin. Instead, they are Islamic terrorism and the rise of China. Furthermore, the new President apparently believes that Russia can be useful in both situations. That said, Moscow, which has cultivated close relations with Beijing, is surely only interested in cooperating on the former mission.

Adding fuel to the fire, Trump might even have a personal vendetta here. After all, it was Ukrainian meddling in last year’s election that brought down Paul Manafort, a prominent adviser. And Petro Poroshenko’s team made it abundantly clear they were waiting for Hillary Clinton to walk into the White House and bankroll them for the next four years. When Trump defied the odds and defeated her, it was a disaster for Kiev. (More)

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Carl Dow, Editor and Publisher, True North Perspective.

True North Perspective
Vol. 13, No. 2 (376)
Special Edition 02
February 2017

Billionaire George Soros has them parading in the streets

Go figure: Soros-funded watchdog says populist politicians

'undermine fight against corruption'

Guest Editorial

By Robert Bridge

Robert Bridge, an American writer and journalist based in Moscow, Russia, is the author of the book on corporate power, Midnight in the American Empire, released in 2013.
Monday 30 January 2017 (RT) With the EU elite threatened by a populist insurgency aiming to end free and easy immigration programs and promote nationalism over globalism, an influential think tank (owned and controlled by George Soros) says populism will only — wait for it — fuel the fires of corruption.

Transparency International, a Berlin-based anti-graft group, warned in its annual Corruption Perceptions Index about the purported perils of populism, a political animal that on occasion rolls through nations like a force of nature to contend with the excesses of an out-of-touch, elitist minority.

"Populism is the wrong medicine," stated TI chair Jose Ugaz, without offering any alternative prescriptions. "In countries with populist or autocratic leaders, we often see democracies in decline and a disturbing pattern of attempts to crack down on civil society, limit press freedom, and weaken the independence of the judiciary."

"Instead of tackling crony capitalism, those leaders usually install even worse forms of corrupt systems," Ugaz said. (More)

Sex • Murder • Politics

(and heart-warming narratives about children)

An essential eclectic collection of stories

to satisfy the minds of sophisticated readers

The Old Man's Last Sauna
'Life is scary, frustrating and sometimes funny. All of these themes are explored in Carl Dow’s collection of short stories, told with the pristine elegance that we haven’t seen since the likes of Stephen Leacock or even Pierre Berton.'
— Award-winning author Emily-Jane Hills Orford
Image: Cover of The Old Man's Last Sauna, by Carl Dow.


An open letter to Prime Minister Trudeau

on his concern for the so-called middle class

By Frances Sedgwick
True North Perspective

Frances Sedgwick's keen eye and ear for the human condition reveals the heart and soul of Parkdale in southwest Toronto, one of the country's most turbulent urban areas where the best traditions of human kindness prevail against powerful forces that would grind them down. True North Perspective proudly presents a column by writer Frances Sedgwick. Her critical observation combined with a tender sense of humour will provide you with something to think about ... and something to talk about.

Wednesday 01 February  2017 — It is not just the so-called middle class, (I think you mean middle-income earners) Prime Minister Trudeau, that is suffering.  Give me a break. As I move around my community and observe my neighbours I get a picture of what is happening with those of us who comprise the rest of society. The homeless, the seniors, young families looking for affordable daycare, single parents, those on social assistance, those looking for a job. Those fully qualified for jobs that are now obsolete. Those students with loans only to find there are no jobs out there after they graduate.  Families doubling up because they cannot afford the escalating rents that the government does nothing to control. Lineups for affordable housing, among other promises not fulfilled. (More)


George Galloway on why he still backs Brexit

Marks liberals not progressives as horrifed by vote

Rejecting the EU is the 'spirit of our' age, says

decades-long British Member of Parliament and activist

By Joe Emersberger
Friday 27 January 2017 Last June, voters in the United Kingdom were asked, in a referendum, if they wanted to remain part of the European Union or leave the bloc, now commonly referred to as "Brexit."

The Brexit side prevailed by a small margin and the U.K. parliament is expected to soon vote to formally start the process of negotiating Brexit with the EU. George Galloway, a former Labour party MP and long-time progressive activist, answered some questions of mine about Brexit.

Joe Emersberger: UK progressives were generally horrified by the win for the Brexit side because there were certainly racist and xenophobic forces emboldened by it. You, however, made a left-wing case for Brexit.  Could you outline what that was?

George Galloway: I reject your premise. Britain's communists, Trotskyists and left-wing trades unionists campaigned for a Leave vote as did the left's only daily newspaper the Morning Star.

I think you mean liberal rather than progressive.

It is true that some who might have preferred to do otherwise were by circumstances obliged to argue for a Remain vote. People like Jeremy Corbyn with whom I opposed the EU in the British parliament for nearly 30 years, and some of the major union leaders.

Most importantly the British working class voted leave. The vast majority of constituencies with Labour MPs voted Leave. The majority of the low paid voted leave.

There is nothing progressive about the EU as we said in 1975 in our “No” vote campaign under the leadership of Tony Benn, the greatest progressive leader we've ever had in Britain. (More)

Comment from the U.S. political right

The coming U.S. clash with Iran

By Patrick J. Buchanan

Friday 03 February 2017 When Gen. Michael Flynn marched into the White House Briefing Room to declare that "we are officially putting Iran on notice," he drew a red line for President Trump. In tweeting the threat, Trump agreed.

His credibility is now on the line.

And what triggered this virtual ultimatum?

Iran-backed Houthi rebels, said Flynn, attacked a Saudi warship and Tehran tested a missile, undermining "security, prosperity, and stability throughout the Middle East," placing "American lives at risk."

But how so?

The Saudis have been bombing the Houthi rebels and ravaging their country, Yemen, for two years. Are the Saudis entitled to immunity from retaliation in wars that they start?

Where is the evidence Iran had a role in the Red Sea attack on the Saudi ship? And why would President Trump make this war his war?

As for the Iranian missile test, a 2015 U.N. resolution "called upon" Iran not to test nuclear-capable missiles. It did not forbid Iran from testing conventional missiles, which Tehran insists this was.

Is the United States making new demands on Iran not written into the nuclear treaty or international law -- to provoke a confrontation? (More)

Are Guatemalan Kaibiles hired guns for Canadian Mining?

During Guatemala's 36-year civil war and genocide, the U.S.-trained Kaibil special forces committed some of the very worst atrocities and war crimes.

By Grahame Russell

Monday 06 February 2017 A new criminal investigation in Guatemala is investigating whether the country's army and Kaibil special forces worked with Hudbay Minerals and CGN (Guatemalan Nickel Company, then owned by Hudbay) private security guards to mount a military intelligence and population control operation, before, during and after the day (September 27, 2009) of repression against local Mayan Qeqchi communities that resulted in the assassination of Adolfo Ich, the shooting-paralyzing of German Chub, and the wounding of various other community members.

During decades of the U.S.-backed killings, torture, disappearances, massacres and genocides, the U.S.-trained Kaibil special forces were found responsible (by the U.N. Truth Commission, among others) for some of the very worst atrocities and war crimes; the Kaibil forces remain today the most feared among the general population. (More)

Despite scrapping TPP, Donald Trump is a dedicated

Free Trader, he just sees advantage in one-on-one deals

Whether multi or bilateral, free trade is free trade, and workers, consumers and the environment pay for the profits of corporations

By Jack Rasmus   
Dr. Jack Rasmus, Ph.D Political Economy, teaches economics and politics at St. Mary’s College in California.

Tuesday 07  February 2017 (telesur) Less than a week after assuming office, President Donald Trump signed an executive order abandoning the 12 nation Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade agreement negotiated by former President Barack Obama, but not yet ratified by the U.S. Congress. He then quickly attacked Mexico — abruptly cut short a phone conversation with Mexico’s President Peña Nieto, canceled a meeting with Peña Nieto after demanding Mexico pay for a wall on the U.S. border and threatened to impose a 20 percent border tax on goods exported to the United States based on the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Trump’s trade representative, Peter Navarro, then dropped another trade policy bomb by publicly declaring Germany was manipulating the euro currency unfairly to its advantage, stealing U.S. exports, while similarly exploiting the rest of the Eurozone economy as well.

Trump, meanwhile, continued to declare that China and Japan were also currency manipulators who were taking advantage of U.S. businesses and increasing their exports at the expense of the U.S. Their currencies declined by 8 percent and 15 percent, respectively, in recent months. The Mexican peso fell by 16 percent after the U.S. election and the euro and British pound each by around 20 percent in 2016.

Trump’s flurry of executive orders canceling trade deals, his phone calls to country leaders, his appointed representatives public statements, and his constant tweets on social media suggest to some, including the U.S. mainstream media, that Trump is anti-free trade, that Trump is ushering in a new trade protectionism, and that his attacks on free trade agreements, like TPP and NAFTA, will precipitate a global trade war.  It is this writer’s view, however, that none of this is likely. (More)

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From the Desk of Darren Jerome

A continuing update on the war against WikiLeaks transparency

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10,000 Colombian families given free land

because they're abandoning cocao crops

The plan hopes to aid the transition to peace and rejuvenate the economy

in Colombia's rural areas, which have been hit hard by decades of conflict

Tuesday 07 February 2017 Colombia announced on Monday that 10,000 families that have abandoned coca cultivation will be granted land titles in the country’s southwest region as part of the transition to peace and as a way to support the rural economy.

Miguel Samper, director of the National Land Agency, told reporters that the government of Juan Manuel Santos planned to give land titles to families where land would be regulated and legalized for those who abandoned the illegal crops that helped fuel the armed conflict and organized crime for decades.   

While peace was signed last year between the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, a key challenge of transitioning to lasting peace has been cutting down the cultivation of illegal crops and helping to develop legal economic alternatives for rural Colombians who grow them. (More)

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