Archive for September, 2013

The Problem Is Too Much Federal Spending — Balance The Budget — Zero Growth In Government Spending For Next 10 Years! — Balanced Budget = $2.5 Trillion In Tax Revenues = $2.5 Trillion in Government Spending — Just Do It! — Videos

Posted on September 29, 2013. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, College, Communications, Constitution, Diasters, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, history, History of Economic Thought, Illegal, Immigration, Inflation, Investments, IRS, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Literacy, Macroeconomics, media, Monetary Policy, Money, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Psychology, Public Sector, Radio, Rants, Raves, Regulations, Resources, Security, Talk Radio, Tax Policy, Taxes, Terrorism, Transportation, Unemployment, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , |

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BUREAU OF THE FISCAL SERVICE
STAR – TREASURY FINANCIAL DATABASE
TABLE 1.  SUMMARY OF RECEIPTS, OUTLAYS AND THE DEFICIT/SURPLUS BY MONTH OF THE U.S. GOVERNMENT (IN MILLIONS)

ACCOUNTING DATE:  08/13

PERIOD                                                                     RECEIPTS                OUTLAYS    DEFICIT/SURPLUS (-)
+  ____________________________________________________________  _____________________  _____________________  _____________________
PRIOR YEAR

OCTOBER                                                                   163,072                261,539                 98,466
NOVEMBER                                                                  152,402                289,704                137,302
DECEMBER                                                                  239,963                325,930                 85,967
JANUARY                                                                   234,319                261,726                 27,407
FEBRUARY                                                                  103,413                335,090                231,677
MARCH                                                                     171,215                369,372                198,157
APRIL                                                                     318,807                259,690                -59,117
MAY                                                                       180,713                305,348                124,636
JUNE                                                                      260,177                319,919                 59,741
JULY                                                                      184,585                254,190                 69,604
AUGUST                                                                    178,860                369,393                190,533
SEPTEMBER                                                                 261,566                186,386                -75,180

YEAR-TO-DATE                                                          2,449,093              3,538,286              1,089,193

CURRENT YEAR

OCTOBER                                                                   184,316                304,311                119,995
NOVEMBER                                                                  161,730                333,841                172,112
DECEMBER                                                                  269,508                270,699                  1,191
JANUARY                                                                   272,225                269,342                 -2,883
FEBRUARY                                                                  122,815                326,354                203,539
MARCH                                                                     186,018                292,548                106,530
APRIL                                                                     406,723                293,834               -112,889
MAY                                                                       197,182                335,914                138,732
JUNE                                                                      286,627                170,126               -116,501
JULY                                                                      200,030                297,627                 97,597
AUGUST                                                                    185,370                333,293                147,923

YEAR-TO-DATE                                                          2,472,542              3,227,888                755,345





0REPORT ID: STM0P081
USER ID  :
DATE: 2013-09-10 TIME: 22.20.05                                                                                         PAGE   1(1)

Dan Mitchell Testifying to the Joint Economic Committee about the Debt Ceiling

It’s Simple to Balance The Budget Without Higher Taxes

Federal workers face new furloughs if government shuts down

Conservative Mark Levin on a possible government shutdown

Govt Shutdown Showdown – House Bill Would Delay Obamacare By One Year – Louie Gohmert (R)

Funding Government by the Minute

Will Taxing the Rich Fix the Deficit?

Why Not Print More Money?

Milton Friedman – Why Tax Reform Is Impossible

United States Government Shutdown Over Health Debate

29 09 2013  Syria News , The Government Shutdown to Come    WSJ Opinion

Ted Cruz: Killing Obamacare for one year is ‘the essence of a compromise’

House sends stopgap back to Senate 48 hours before shutdown

By Mike Lillis

House Republicans approved a stopgap spending bill that delays ObamaCare in  an early-morning Sunday vote that increases the chances of a government  shutdown.

The high-stakes GOP move intensifies a game of chicken with Senate Democrats  with just 48 hours to go before the lights could go out on the federal  government.

The White House threatened to veto the measure, while Senate Majority Leader  Harry Reid (D-Nev.) proclaimed it dead in the upper chamber.

The imminent deadline, combined with the prolonged impasse, has led some  lawmakers to predict a shutdown is all but inevitable.

“In candor … when the clock strikes midnight on Monday, the place is shutting  down,” Rep. Robert Andrews (N.J.), head of the Democrats’ Steering and Policy  Committee, said Saturday night.

The House added language delaying implementation of the healthcare law by a  year in a 231-192 vote, with Democratic Reps. Jim Matheson (Utah) and Mike  McIntyre (N.C.)  joining Republicans. Two Republicans voted against the  delay, Reps. Chris Gibson (N.Y.) and Richard Hanna (N.Y.).

The House also voted to eliminate a tax on medical devices in a 248-174 vote,  with 17 Democrats joining the GOP. The tax is intended to pay for some of the  law’s costs. Gibson switched his vote from no to yes toward the end of the  vote.

Under the rule adopted earlier in the day, the underlying spending bill was  deemed passed with the approval of the two amendments.

Unveiled by GOP leaders just hours earlier, the continuing resolution (CR)  would fund the government through Dec. 15. It would delay the individual  coverage mandate and the insurance exchanges which are set to launch on Tuesday  – and eliminate a 2.3 percent tax on medical devices.

Republican supporters said the ObamaCare delay is necessary to prepare a wary  public for sweeping changes that lack the underlying infrastructure to make them  work. They framed their postponement proposal as a compromise, relative to the  defunding measure they had pushed earlier in the month.

“This bill is not about whether ObamaCare is going to come in or not,” said  Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.). “What we’re voting on is whether or not you’ll  accept the compromise which we have reached out to offer.”

The argument didn’t sit well with Democrats, who were quick to note that the  sequester-level spending contained in the Senate-passed bill – a level anathema  to many Democrats – is the same as that of the initial House CR.

“You’ve won,” said Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md), “but you can’t take yes  for an answer.”

A separate bill, designed to ensure that military personnel are paid even if  a shutdown is not averted, was also approved in a unanimous vote.

Republicans characterized the bill as a safety net in the event Congress  can’t reach a deal. Democrats countered with charges that the proposal is  evidence that the GOP’s CR strategy is designed to shutter the government.

The CR package was designed to cater to conservative Republicans, who have  insisted that any spending package must scale back ObamaCare. Those  conservatives had revolted earlier in the month when Speaker John Boehner  (R-Ohio) tried to move a funding bill without that direct link.

The resistance forced GOP leaders to approve a CR last week that would have  defunded the healthcare law – language that was stripped by Senate Democrats  Friday, putting the ball back in Boehner’s court.

At a closely watched meeting of the GOP conference Saturday afternoon in the  Capitol basement, Boehner outlined his hard-line strategy, leading to cheers  from a conference that’s often been wary of his conservative credentials.

“This is exactly what we hoped for so we’re all getting behind leadership,”  said Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.), a Tea Party favorite. “We’re excited [and]  we’re united.”

The bill now moves back to the Senate, where Reid is expected to scrap the  two healthcare amendments with a single vote on Monday, when the Senate returns,  and return the “clean” CR, yet again, to Boehner and House Republicans.

“To be absolutely clear, the Senate will reject both the one-year delay of  the Affordable Care Act and the repeal of the medical device tax,” Reid said in  a statement. “After weeks of futile political games from Republicans, we are  still at square one: Republicans must decide whether to pass the Senate’s clean  CR, or force a Republican government shutdown.”

That move could potentially come just hours before the Tuesday shutdown.

“ObamaCare is based on limitless government, bureaucratic arrogance, and a  disregard of the will of the people,” said Rep. Marlin Stutzman (R-Ind.).

The 17 Democrats who voted to eliminate the medical device tax were McIntyre,  Matheson, Ron Barber (Ariz.), Tammy Duckworth (Ill.), John Barrow (Ga.), Dan  Maffei (N.Y.), Patrick Murphy (Fla.), Cheri Bustos (Ill.), John Delaney (Md.),  William Enyart (Ill.), Sean Maloney (N.Y.), Jerry McNerney (Calif.), Bill Owens  (N.Y.), Scott Peters (Calif.), Nick Rahall (W.Va.), Bradley Schneider (Ill.) and  Kyrsten Sinema (Ariz.).

Rep. Elijah Cummings (Md.), the top Democrat on the House Oversight  Committee, said in a statement early Sunday that Republicans “failed the  American people.”

“They voted to shut down the government, all because of their obsession with  taking away health insurance for millions of people and giving back to insurance  companies the power to decide who gets what care. In their blind pursuit of  ideology over our nation’s best interests, Republicans are hurting our economy,  threatening job creation, and leaving families with less security and  stability,” Cummings said.

Read more: http://thehill.com/homenews/house/325331-house-sends-stopgap-back-before-senate-48-hours-to-shutdown#ixzz2gJOLOkn2 Follow us: @thehill on Twitter | TheHill on Facebook

U.S. government shutdowns have long history

OK, gridlocked politicians we’re used to. But why padlock the Statue of Liberty? You don’t see other democracies shuttering landmarks and sending civil servants home just because their political parties can’t get along. Belgian civil servants, for example, carried on nicely for a year and a half while their politicians bickered over forming a new government.

The potential for a partial shutdown Tuesday is a quirk of American history. So if you’re bored with blaming House Republicans or President Barack Obama, you can lay some responsibility on the Founding Fathers.

Or blame President Jimmy Carter for his rectitude. Or ex-House Speaker Newt Gingrich for his hissy fit over how he got off Air Force One.

A history of government shutdowns, American-style:

1789: Balance of powers.

The framers of the Constitution gave Congress control over spending as a way to limit the power of the presidency. The government can only spend money “in consequence of appropriations made by law,” or in other words, after Congress says so and with the president’s signature.

1800s: Power struggles.

Turns out it’s not easy to shoo federal bureaucrats away from the piggy bank.

When they wanted to spend more than Congress gave, the War Department and other agencies ordered stuff on credit. Then they would go to Congress seeking an appropriation to pay the bills. Lawmakers felt obliged to cover the government’s debts, but they weren’t happy about it. The executive branch was undermining Congress’s power of the purse.

Congress responded with a series of laws that eventually got one of those dreadful Washington monikers: the Anti-Deficiency Act.

Because of the act, officials who mistakenly spend money Congress hasn’t OK’d face disciplinary action, ranging from firing to hours stuck in mind-numbing budget training. There are exceptions for spending to protect lives or property.

But willful overspending is a crime that carries the threat of fines and two years in prison.

1900s: A delicate balance.

The Anti-Deficiency Act seems clear. But as usual, Congress sent mixed messages. Lawmakers routinely failed to pass most of each year’s dozen or so appropriations bills on time. Sometimes agencies went a full year without a budget. Usually lawmakers would smooth that over with a short-term money approval, called a “continuing resolution” in Washington-speak.

Sometimes Congress couldn’t even agree on those: Stopgap resolutions got tangled up for days or a couple of weeks in political fights over matters such as abortion, foreign aid or congressional pay raises. Sort of like the current fight over health care.

But government agencies didn’t shut down and Cabinet secretaries weren’t led away in handcuffs. Agency chiefs might delay workers’ pay and put items such as travel and new contracts on hold. But they assumed Congress didn’t want them to turn off the lights and go home. Eventually lawmakers would cough up a spending bill to retroactively paper over the funding gap.

1980: An inconvenient truth.

This look-the-other-way system worked for decades. Until the Carter administration.

A stickler for the rules, Carter asked his attorney general to look into the Anti-Deficiency Act. In April 1980, Attorney General Benjamin Civiletti issued a startling opinion. “The legal authority for continued operations either exists or it does not,” he wrote.

When it does not, government must send employees home. They can’t work for free or with the expectation that they will be paid someday. What’s more, Civiletti declared, any agency chief who broke that law would be prosecuted.

Five days later, funding for the Federal Trade Commission expired amid a congressional disagreement over limiting the agency’s powers. The FTC halted operations, canceled court dates and meetings, and sent 1,600 workers packing, apparently the first agency ever closed by a budget dispute.

Embarrassed lawmakers made a quick fix. The FTC reopened the next day. The estimated cost of the brouhaha: $700,000.

Carter, a Democratic president forever stymied by his own party in Congress, ordered the whole government to be ready to shut down when the budget year ended on Oct. 1, 1980, in case lawmakers missed their deadline for appropriations bills.

A report by what’s now the Government Accountability Office captured federal officials’ dismay: “That the federal government would shut its doors was, they said, incomprehensible, inconceivable, unthinkable.”

It almost happened. Funding for many agencies did expire, but just for a few hours, and nobody was sent home.

Near the end of his term, Civiletti further clarified the law’s meaning. In a government-wide shutdown, the military, air traffic control, prisons and other work that protects human safety or property would continue. So would things such as Social Security benefits, which Congress has financed indefinitely.

1981-1990: Playing chicken.

With the threat of shutdown as a weapon, budget fights would never be the same, and a big one was brewing.

Republican Ronald Reagan moved into the White House in January 1981 with a promise to cut taxes and shrink government, setting up a showdown with Democrats who ran the House.

High noon came early on Monday, Nov. 23, 1981.

The government had technically been without money all weekend, but Congress approved emergency spending to keep it running. That morning, Reagan wielded his first veto. He was making a stand against “budget-busting policies,” the president declared, sending confused federal workers streaming out of offices in Washington and across the nation.

It was the first government shutdown. But it lasted only hours. By that afternoon, Congress approved a three-week spending extension more to Reagan’s liking. Workers returned Tuesday morning. The estimated cost: more than $80 million.

The pattern was set. Over his two terms, Reagan and congressional Democrats would regularly argue to the brink of shutdown, and twice more they sent workers home for a half-day.

President George H.W. Bush used the tactic only once, during the budget wrangling that punctured his “no new taxes” pledge.

That partial shutdown over the 1990 Columbus Day weekend mostly served to miff tourists who found national park visitor centers locked and Smithsonian museums closed.

Shutdown threats were becoming ho-hum, just more Washington games. After all, what politician would relish a full body plunge into the “unthinkable”?

1995-96: The real thing.

Cue President Bill Clinton and Gingrich.

Two big men with big ideas and big-time egos, the Democratic president and the Republican House speaker charged into a cage match and ended up wrestling the U.S. government to the ground. Twice.

These two shutdowns, for six days and 21 days, were the longest ever. Until now they were assumed to have taught politicians the folly of ever again powering down the world’s most powerful government. Maybe not.

Serious issues were at stake in 1995 — the future of Medicare, tax cuts, aid for the poor, the budget deficit. But they got lost in the absurdities:

The shutdowns didn’t save money; they cost millions.

Despite all the buildup, most of government didn’t close, because of complexities of the federal budget and exemptions for essential workers.

Still, the first shutdown resulted in 800,000 workers eventually getting paid for staying home.

Despite public disgust, Clinton and the Republicans failed to settle all their disputes and soon idled 280,000 employees for another three weeks, through Christmas and into the New Year.

The effects rippled through the economy, harming federal contractors and businesses that serve visitors to national parks and industries that must work with federal inspectors.

The tone of the whole exercise was set when a huffy Gingrich suggested he had steered the government to a standstill because Clinton relegated him to the back door of Air Force One on an overseas trip. The public tantrum delighted Democrats and cartoonists alike.

The president was judged to have “won” the tussle. Republicans took a drubbing in the polls and ended up accepting most of Clinton’s conditions in a compromise that seemed more like crying uncle.

But faith in government may have been the biggest loser.

A footnote: On the January day that missing workers were scheduled to finally return to their posts, the Northeast was just starting to dig out from an extreme blizzard.

After weeks of insisting it was vital to get government back to work quickly, Clinton decided to keep Washington closed another four days.

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Posted on September 26, 2013. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Communications, Constitution, Crime, Culture, Economics, history, Inflation, Investments, Islam, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Literacy, media, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Public Sector, Unemployment, Unions, Video, War | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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Rick Stengel Is at Least the 24th Journalist to Work for the Obama Administration

Time managing editor Rick Stengel (pictured above) is leaving journalism to go work for the State Department, making him at least the 15th 21st23rd 24th reporter to go to work for the Obama administration. Stengel will be the Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs,Politico and Capital New York report. The last high-profile journalist to leave Time for the Obama administration is Jay Carney, who is currently White House press secretary (pictured at right). Update:Thanks to a few tipsters, we’ve updated with a bigger count. They’re listed below.

wave of reporters went to work for President Obama early in the administration, a time when many media organizations were going through layoffs and Obama’s approval rating was sky-high. The flow has tapered off since then. The Washington Post‘s Ed O’Keefe has semi-regularly kept tabs on the number of reporters working for Obama administration, counting 10 in May 2009, 14 in 2010, and 13 in 2011. The Washington Examiner‘s Paul Beddard counted 19 reporters working for “Team Obama” in February 2012, but he included liberal advocacy groups as part of the “team.”

Keeping track of how many reporters went to work under President Obama is tricky. Do you count those who had some other job in between reporting and the Obama administration? (Former TV reporter Beverley Lumpkin worked for the Project on Government Oversight before joining the Justice Department in 2011.) What about someone who went to work for George W. Bush, and kept his job under Obama? (Former ABC reporter Geoff Morrell went to work for the Defense Department in 2007.) Here’s a non-exhaustive list of journalists who switched to working for the government. Our updated count includes people like Lumpkin and Morrell, plus new additions:

  • Earlier this month, Douglas Frantz went to work for the State Department, too, as assistant secretary of state for public affairs. Frantz took a couple spins through the revolving door between the media and the executive branch, the Huffington Post noted. For decades, Frantz reported for publications like The New York Times and the Los Angeles Times until 2009, when he got a job as an investigator for the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, which was chaired by then-Sen. John Kerry. In May 2012, Frantz got a job as The Washington Post‘s national security editor.
  • Boston Globe online politics editor Glen Johnson went to work for Secretary of State John Kerry in January as a senior adviser.
  • In February 2012, Stephen Barr went to work for the Labor Department as senior managing directorof the Office of Public Affairs. Barr had written the Federal Diary column for The Washington Post, which he retired from in 2008.
  • The Washington Post‘s Shailagh Murray became Vice President Joe Biden’s communications directorin March 2011.
  • Rosa Brooks, an author who was a columnist for the Los Angeles Times, was counselor to Michele Flournoy, the undersecretary of defense for policy, from April 2009 to July 2011. Brooks now writes for Foreign Policy.
  • In February 2010, Desson Thomson went to work as a speechwriter for the U.S. ambassador to the U.K., Louis Susman. Thomson had been a film critic for The Washington Post until 2008.
  • Roberta Baskin, who worked as a TV journalist and ran the Center for Public Integrity, went to work for the Department of Health and Human Services in August 2009 as a senior communications adviser.
  • Washington Post Outlook section deputy editor Warren Bass went to work for then-UN ambassador Susan Rice in January 2009 as director of speechwriting and senior policy adviser. He now works for the RAND Corporation.
  • Education Week reporter David Hoff went to work for the Education Department in May 2009.
  • Sasha Johnson, who worked for CNN as a senior political producer, became a spokeswoman for the Department of Transportation in May 2009, and, recently moved to be the chief of staff for the Federal Aviation Administration.
  • The Chicago Tribune‘s Jill Zuckman became the Department of Transportation’s communications director in February 2009. She was a commentator on MSNBC last year.
  • Rick Weiss left The Washington Post to work for the Center for American Progress, then in March 2009 moved to be the communications director and senior policy strategist in the White House Office of Science and Technology.

Update: A few people have written in with names we’d overlooked:

  • Former CBS and ABC reporter Linda Doulglass started working for the Obama campaign in May 2008. She was then communications director for the White House Office of Health Reform until June 2010. She then worked for the Atlantic Media as communications chief until June of this year.
  • New York Times reporter Eric Dash joined the Treasury Department’s public affairs office in 2012.
  • As did MSNBC producer Anthony Reyes.
  • Aneesh Raman left CNN to work for Obama’s 2008 campaign. He’s now a speechwriter for Obama.
  • CNN national security correspondent Jim Sciutto worked as chief of staff for U.S. Ambassador to China Gary Locke from 2011 to September 2013.
  • San Francisco Chronicle reporter Kelly Zito, who covered the environment, went to work for theEPA’s public affairs office in August 2011.
  • We overlooked an obvious one: Samantha Power made her name as a journalist covering genocide before working for Obama when he was still a senator. She’s now Obama’sambassador to the United Nations.

Time’s Stengel latest in long line of reporters who jumped to jobs in Obama administration

By  and Billy Kenber, Published: September 25 E-mail the writer

Jay Carney says it was a simple calculation. He could continue as a reporter and writer for the rest of his working life, or he could try something new and different.He chose something different. After 20 years as a reporter at Time magazine, Carney accepted an offer to become communications director for Joe Biden, the newly elected vice president, in late 2008. Carney would go on to become President Obama’s press secretary two years later. “I had a great job” at Time, Carney says. “I’d also been doing it for 20 years. Doing something completely new has an appeal.”

As it happens, Carney was an early adopter. He was among the first of what has turned out to be a parade of journalists who’ve turned in their press badges for work in the Obama administration. In a trend that has raised some eyebrows among Obama’s critics, at least 20 reporters and editors from mainstream news organizations have taken high-profile positions in the administration within the past five years.

The latest hire: Richard Stengel, Time magazine’s managing editor (and Carney’s former boss). Obama nominated Stengel last week to be the State Department’s undersecretary for public diplomacy and public affairs, a top communications post. Stengel will succeed Tara Sonenshine, another journalist (ABC News, Newsweek) who became part of the government she once covered.

At State, Stengel can swap newsroom stories with Samantha Power, a former journalist (U.S. News, the Boston Globe, the New Republic) who is now the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations. His staff will include Desson Thomson, a former Washington Post movie critic who became a speechwriter for Hillary Rodham Clinton when she served as secretary of state. Other colleagues will include two recent additions to Secretary of State John F. Kerry’s staff: Glen Johnson, a longtime political reporter and editor at the Boston Globe, and Douglas Frantz, a reporter and editor who has worked for the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times and, most recently, The Post. Frantz was also briefly an investigator for the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, chaired by Kerry, then a senator from Massachusetts.

Every administration draws in a few journalists, typically as speechwriters and press secretaries, a natural given the overlapping skills. A young reporter named Diane Sawyer went to work in Richard Nixon’s press operation in 1970, eventually helping Nixon write his memoirs. Tony Snow, the late columnist and Fox News host, wrote speeches for George H.W. Bush and served as the press secretary for George W. Bush from 2006 to 2007.

Edward R. Murrow, the legendary CBS anchor and perhaps the most famous newsman in America at the time, headed President John F. Kennedy’s U.S. Information Agency, overseeing the U.S. government’s broadcasts around the world.

But Obama may be different in terms of the sheer number of ink-stained wretches and other news-media denizens that he has attracted. Even before he was in office, his campaign had hired former CBS and ABC News correspondent Linda Douglass as a senior strategist. Douglass went on to serve as the communications chief for the White House Office of Health Reform before leaving in 2010.

The pattern of Obama hires has periodically aroused suspicions about the media’s allegedly cozy relationship with the president. Prompted by Stengel’s appointment last week, conservative radio titan Rush Limbaugh commented on his program, “There’s an incestuous relationship that exists between the Washington press corps and any Democrat administration. . . . Journalists are simply leftists disguised as reporters. They’re political activists disguised as reporters. That’s all they are, and this is just the latest example.”

Journalists who’ve become former journalists say it’s a lot more complicated than that.

Jill Zuckman, who was a seasoned political correspondent for the Chicago Tribune, says she joined Team Obama (as head of public affairs at the Transportation Department) in February 2009 primarily because aRepublican, Rep. Ray LaHood (Ill.), had been appointed to run it.

“I probably would not have done it without a professional relationship with Ray LaHood,” says Zuckman, who had covered LaHood when he was a congressional staff member in the early 1990s. “He was one of my favorite members of Congress. I thought he was smart, frank and plugged in. I thought I could help him” in his new job.

Zuckman, who left Transportation in 2011 to join a communications firm run by Democrats Anita Dunn and Hillary Rosen, denies any tilt for Obama or Democrats while she was a journalist. “I was a straightforward reporter,” she said. “I had good relationships with Republicans as well as Democrats.”

Carney makes no secret of his loyalties to Obama now but defends his objectivity and professionalism as a journalist when he covered candidate Obama and Washington generally. “I was definitely excited by and privately supported Obama in 2008,” he said. “But I think any reading of my coverage as a reporter would show that I was not an ideologue. [Time columnist] Joe Klein said he thought I was a Republican” when Carney joined Biden’s staff.

What’s more, the news business’s financial troubles have played a significant role in driving journalists onto the job market. The Obama administration came in as the Great Recession worsened what already had been a bad slump for traditional media outlets. Since then, mainstream news organizations have shed thousands of jobs.

“The news business was going south,” says Thomson, who accepted a buyout from The Post in 2008 after 25 years at the paper. “We are at a time when reinvention is the new black. And in 2008, that’s what was in front of me, to reinvent.”

(Thomson and Frantz are among the cadre of former Post journalists who have found second careers in federal Washington. Others include former city editor Bill Miller, now a spokesman for the U.S. attorney in Washington, and former political reporter Shailagh Murray, who replaced Carney as Biden’s communications czar in 2011.)

Peter Gosselin, an economics reporter at the Los Angeles Times, became Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner’s chief speechwriter in 2009, just a few weeks after the Times’s parent, Tribune Co., filed for bankruptcy-court protection. “I couldn’t trust that I’d be able to support two kids through school, and in a few years going to college, on the chance that [newspapers] were not going to collapse,” Gosselin said.

Journalists who became Obama operatives speak highly of the experience. Although they say the office “culture” is wholly different — more collaborative, less geared to a newsroom’s individual star system — the job can be no less rewarding.

“I’m liking it a great deal,” said Thomson. “From the State Department’s point of view, the world is the ultimate canvas and the U.S. role in the world is as big a subject as it gets. . . . You go from outsider to insider, but that doesn’t mean you stop using the skills you applied to journalism.”

Zuckman, who oversaw the Transportation Department’s communications efforts during Toyota’s massive recalls of vehicles to fix a problem with sudden acceleration, said her stint at the agency gave her an appreciation for the hard, fast and complicated work that government employees do. Working for the agency, she said, “turned out to be one of the great experiences of my life.”

But Gosselin advised those who are considering such a switch to think twice.

“What astounded me was what a sleek, well-oiled, 21st-century machine a newsroom looks like compared to the way it works inside government,” he said. “The cultures are really, really different, particularly at high levels,” he added, citing the “messy” government decision-making process in which dozens of people get a say.

After working for Geithner and as a special adviser for health reform at the Department of Health and Human Services, Gosselin is now a senior health-care policy analyst for Bloomberg Government, a news and information source. Which makes him part of an even smaller fraternity: those who’ve made a full revolution through the revolving door between reporting and government.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/times-stengel-latest-in-long-line-of-reporters-who-jumped-to-jobs-in-obama-administration/2013/09/25/3937c1fa-2244-11e3-b73c-aab60bf735d0_story.html

Background Articles and Videos

Nelson Mandela

NELSON MANDELA the TRUTH IS REVEALED

Alex Jones: Nelson Mandela is “a horrible person”, “communist mass-bomber”

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Cruz Filibuster, Senate Rule XXII — The Cloture Rule Requires 60 Votes To End Debate — Stands Against Obamacare and For Defunding Obamacare — Make D.C. Listen! — Videos

Posted on September 24, 2013. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, College, Communications, Constitution, Education, Federal Government, government spending, history, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Press, Regulations, Technology, Video, Wealth, Weather, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

steve_cruz_filibuster

Countdown to government shutdown

By Raymond Thomas Pronk

House_funds_federal_government

The nonessential parts of the federal government may be shut down on Oct. 1 until Congress passes either a fiscal year 2014 budget appropriations bill or a continuing resolution.

Fiscal year 2014 begins Oct. 1 and ends Sept. 30, 2014. Since the Democrats want to increase government spending and taxes and the Republicans want to decrease government spending and taxes, neither party will agree to a budget appropriations bill.

Instead of a stalemate, Congress could pass a joint continuing resolution that appropriates funds for government departments, agencies and programs at current, expanded or reduced levels until a formal appropriations bill is signed into law or until the resolution expires. A continuing resolution would have to be passed by both the House and Senate and then signed into law by the president.

The House passed a continuing resolution on Sept. 20 that would fund the federal government at current levels for the first 11 weeks of the fiscal year 2014 and keep the federal government open. If this continuing resolution is not passed by the Senate, some nonessential parts of the federal government would need to be shut down.

The House resolution had two amendments. The first would strip out funding for the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, more commonly referred to as Obamacare and thereby stop its implementation. The second would direct how federal government spending is prioritized in the event the Treasury hits the borrowing debt ceiling limit in the near future.

The 230-189 vote was mainly along party lines with 228 Republicans and two Democrats voting in favor and 188 Democrats and one Republican voting against the continuing resolution.

House votes to fund federal government but defund Obamacare         Credit: http://www.ktvu.com

Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-Ohio) held a victory rally after the resolution passed and remarked, “The American people don’t want the government shut down, and they don’t want Obamacare. The House has listened to the American people. Now it’s time for the United States Senate to listen to them as well.”

House Majority Leader, Eric Cantor put several Democratic Senators, who are up for re-election in Nov. of 2014, on the spot. Cantor called out Sens. Mark Begich of Alaska, Mark Pryor of Arkansas, Mary Landrieu of Louisiana and Kay Hagan of North Carolina. Cantor said, “It’s up to Senate Democrats to follow House Republicans and show some responsibility.”

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) said on Sept. 19, “I will do everything and anything possible to defund Obamacare.” Cruz promised to filibuster any attempt to strip out the language of the House continuing resolution that defunds Obamacare. A filibuster is the use of irregular or obstructive tactics by a Senator to prevent the adoption of a measure.

Cruz began his filibuster by saying: “I rise today in opposition to Obamacare. I rise today in an effort to speak for 26 million Texans and for 300 million Americans. All across this country Americans are suffering because of Obamacare. Obamacare isn’t working and yet fundamentally there are politicians in this body who are not listening to the people. They are not listening to the concerns of their constituents. They are not listening to the jobs lost, the people forced into part-time jobs, the people losing their health insurance, the people who are struggling. A great many Texans, a great many Americans feel that they do not have a voice. So I hope to play some very small part in helping to provide that voice for them. …I  intend to speak in opposition to Obamacare. I intend to speak in support of defunding Obamacare, until I am unable to stand.”

Cruz delivered on his promise by standing and speaking for more than 21 hours on Sept. 23-24.

According to a Sept. 15 NBC/WSJ poll, 44 percent of respondents call Obamacare a bad idea and 31 percent believe it’s a good idea.

In a national survey of 1,000 likely voters conducted on Sept. 14-15 by Rasmussen Reports, 51 percent favor a government shutdown until Congress cuts health care funding. The Rasmussen survey also found that “58 percent favor a federal budget that cuts spending, while 16 percent prefer one that increases spending. Twenty-one percent support a budget that keeps spending levels about the same.”

According to Rasmussen, “74 percent of Republican and 62 percent of unaffiliated voters would rather have a shutdown until the two sides can agree on what spending to cut,” while “63 percent of Democrats agree with the president and would prefer to avoid a shutdown by authorizing spending at existing levels.”

“Republicans are simply postponing for a few days the inevitable choice they must face: pass a clean bill to fund the government, or force a shutdown. I have said it before but it seems to bear repeating: the Senate will not pass any bill that defunds or delays Obamacare,” said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nevada).

The Democrats are determined to fund Obamacare, shut down the government on Oct.1 and blame it on Republicans.

Raymond Thomas Pronk presents the Pronk Pops Show on KDUX web radio from 4-5 p.m. Monday thru Thursday and from 3-5 p.m. Friday and authors the companion blog http://www.pronkpops.wordpress.com.

John Boehner Says AMERICA DOES NOT WANT Obamacare!

Cruz Kicks Off Filibuster

TED CRUZ SENATE FILIBUSTER LAST 15 MINUTES

Ted Cruz Reveals His Biggest Surprise to Rush Limbaugh – Obamacare Filibuster – 9/25/13

Senator Cruz Continues the Filibuster on EIB

►► Rush Limbaugh on Sen Ted Cruz’s Report on Obama Administration Attempts to Expand Federal Power

Ted Cruz Begins Anti-Obamacare ‘Filibuster’: ” Until I Am No Longer Able to Stand ” – 9/24/13

Rand Paul during Senator Ted Cruz Obamacare Filibuster 9/24/13

Ted Cruz Reads Green Eggs And Ham. Ted Cruz Filibuster

Ted Cruz Defends Defunding ObamaCare in Filibuster on Senate Floor

Sen. Ted Cruz Delivers First Major Floor Speech Offering an Amendment to Defund Obamacare

►► Sen Ted Cruz with Greta Van Susteren on Defunding Obamacare

Shutdown Showdown – Sen Ted Cruz On Defunding Obamacare – Hannity – 9-23-2013

Palin Fires Back at Fmr. McCain Strategist, GOP Establishment for ‘Waving White Flag’ on Obamacare

Brit Hume To O’Reilly: Talk Radio Hosts Driving Republicans to Embrace ‘Suicide Missions’

LibertyNEWS TV – “ObamaCare Sound & Fury: Name-Shaming & Blame-Gaming”

The Nuclear Option: The Filibuster “Power Grab” in the Senate

Professor Michael Teter ’99 on “The Unconstitutional Senate: One Senator, One Vote, One Filibuster”

Background Articles and Videos

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington – “Liberty is too Precious a thing to be buried in books”

The Greatest Speech Ever Made – Charlie Chaplin

Filibuster

United States

The filibuster is a powerful parliamentary device in the United States Senate, which was strengthened in 1975 [46] and in the past decade has come to mean that most major legislation (apart from budgets) requires a 60% vote to bring a bill or nomination to the floor for a vote. In recent years, the majority has preferred to avoid filibusters by moving to other business when a filibuster is threatened and attempts to achieve cloture have failed.[47] Defenders call the filibuster “The Soul of the Senate.”[48]

Senate rules permit a senator, or a series of senators, to speak for as long as they wish and on any topic they choose, unless “three-fifths of the Senators duly chosen and sworn”[49] (usually 60 out of 100 senators) brings debate to a close by invoking cloture under Senate Rule XXII.

According to the Supreme Court ruling in United States v. Ballin (1892), changes to Senate rules could be achieved by a simple majority, but only on the first day of the session in January or March. The idea is that on this first day, the rules of the new legislative session are determined afresh, and rules do not automatically continue from one session to the next. This is called the constitutional option by proponents, and the nuclear option by opponents, who insist that rules do remain in force across sessions. Under current Senate rules, a rule change itself could be filibustered, with two-thirds of those senators present and voting (as opposed to the normal three-fifths of those sworn) needing to vote to break the filibuster.[49] Even if a filibuster attempt is unsuccessful, the process takes floor time.[50]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Filibuster

Cloture

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Cloture (/ˈklər/ KLOH-chər) is a motion or process in parliamentary procedure aimed at bringing debate to a quick end. It is also called closure or, informally, a guillotine.[1] The cloture procedure originated in the French National Assembly, from which the name is taken. Clôture is French for “ending” or “conclusion”. It was introduced into the Parliament of the United Kingdom by William Ewart Gladstone to overcome the obstruction of the Irish nationalist party and was made permanent in 1887. It was subsequently adopted by the United States Senate and other legislatures.

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History

A similar procedure was adopted in the United States. This was invoked for the first time on November 15, 1919,[5] during the 66th Congress, to end filibuster on the Treaty of Versailles.[6]

The cloture rule originally required a supermajority of two-thirds of all senators “present and voting” to be considered filibuster-proof.[7][8] For example, if all 100 Senators voted on a cloture motion, 67 of those votes would have to be for cloture for it to pass; however if some Senators were absent and only 80 Senators voted on a cloture motion, only 54 would have to vote in favor.[9] However, it proved very difficult to achieve this; the Senate tried eleven times between 1927 and 1962 to invoke cloture but failed each time. Filibuster was particularly heavily used by Democratic Senators from Southern states to block civil rights legislation.[10]

In 1975, the Democratic Senate majority, having achieved a net gain of four seats in the 1974 Senate elections to a strength of 61 (with an additional Independent caucusing with them for a total of 62), reduced the necessary supermajority to three-fifths (60 out of 100).[11] However, as a compromise to those who were against the revision, the new rule also changed the requirement for determining the number of votes needed for a cloture motion’s passage from those Senators “present and voting” to those Senators “duly chosen and sworn”. Thus, 60 votes for cloture would be necessary regardless of whether every Senator voted. The only time a lesser number would become acceptable is when a Senate seat is vacant. (For example, if there were two vacancies in the Senate, thereby making 98 Senators “duly chosen and sworn”, it would only take 59 votes for a cloture motion to pass.)[9]

The new version of the cloture rule, which has remained in place since 1975, makes it considerably easier for the Senate majority to invoke cloture. This has considerably strengthened the power of the majority, and allowed it to pass many bills that would otherwise have been filibustered.[citation needed] (The Democratic Party held a two-thirds majority in the 89th Congress of 1965, but regional divisions among Democrats meant that many filibusters were invoked by Southern Democrats against civil rights bills supported by the Northern wing of the party). Some senators wanted to reduce it to a simple majority (51 out of 100) but this was rejected, as it would greatly diminish the ability of the minority to check the majority.[citation needed]

Procedure

The three-fifths version of the cloture rule does not apply to motions to end filibusters relating to Senate Rule changes. To invoke cloture to end debate over changing the Senate Rules, the original version of the rule (two-thirds of those Senators “present and voting”) still applies.[12]

The procedure for “invoking cloture,” or ending a filibuster, is as follows:

  • A minimum of sixteen senators must sign a petition for cloture.
  • The petition may be presented by interrupting another Senator’s speech.
  • The clerk reads the petition.
  • The cloture petition is ignored for one full day during which the Senate is sitting. For example, if the petition is filed on Monday, it is ignored until Wednesday. (If the petition is filed on a Friday, it is ignored until Tuesday, assuming that the Senate did not sit on Saturday or Sunday.)[13]
  • On the second calendar day during which the Senate sits after the presentation of the petition, after the Senate has been sitting for one hour, a “quorum call” is undertaken to ensure that a majority of the Senators are present. However, the mandatory quorum call is often waived by unanimous consent.
  • The President of the Senate or President pro tempore presents the petition.
  • The Senate votes on the petition; three-fifths of the whole number of Senators (sixty with no vacancies) is the required majority; however, when cloture is invoked on a question of changing the rules of the Senate, two-thirds of the Senators voting (not necessarily two-thirds of all Senators) is the requisite majority. This is commonly referred to in the news media as a “test vote”.

After cloture has been invoked, the following restrictions apply:

  • No more than thirty hours of debate may occur.[14]
  • No Senator may speak for more than one hour.
  • No amendments may be moved unless they were filed on the day in between the presentation of the petition and the actual cloture vote.
  • All amendments must be relevant to the debate.
  • Certain procedural motions are not permissible.
  • The presiding officer gains additional power in controlling debate.
  • No other matters may be considered until the question upon which cloture was invoked is disposed of.

The ability to invoke cloture was last attained by a US political party in the 113th Congress, by the Democrats, in regards to the Corker-Hoeven Amendment to the 2013 Immigration Reform Bill.[15] The previous time was in the 113th Congress during a debate on the vacancy in the position of Secretary of Defense.[citation needed] The previous time was in the 111th Congress, also by the Democrats, with the help of two independents.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cloture

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Budget Battle Begins — Countdown To Defund Obamacare or Government Shutdown? — Videos

Posted on September 23, 2013. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, College, Communications, Diasters, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, government spending, Health Care, history, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Psychology, Rants, Raves, Strategy, Talk Radio, Tax Policy, Taxes, Unemployment, Video, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , |

Government-Shutdown

Obamacare_cut_off

GOP_shutdown_government

Department_shutdowns

shutdown_government_bad

obama_smoking_quit

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TRIFECTA – Defund ObamaCare? Will GOP Efforts Succeed or Fail?

On Obamacare vote, senators will ‘find Jesus’

Obama Criticizes Congress After Vote to Defund ‘Obamacare’

Ted Cruz on Defunding Obamacare – Chris Wallace Interview – Fox News – 9/22/13

Senator Ted Cruz (R-Tx) appeared on Fox News Sunday to defend his push to defund Obamacare, which has landed him in trouble with his own party. Host Chris Wallace pressed Cruz on whether he had gotten the GOP into a fight with no clear strategy or end game, how he intended to get out of it, and if he would actually support the politically unpopular option of a government shutdown.

“Last week’s vote was a tremendous victory,” Cruz said of the House’s passage of a continuing resolution that did not fund Obamacare. “Just a few weeks ago, no pundit in Washington thought it was possible we’d see the vote we saw on Friday…Next week is a time for party unity. Next week, all Senate Republicans, I hope, should come together and support the House bill. In my view, Senate Republicans should stand united to stop Harry Reid from changing the House bill, and in particular from inserting the funding with fifty-one votes.”

But Cruz is in a jam, as he only has enough votes to deny cloture, not to stop Senate Democrats from amending the resolution to include funding for the Affordable Care Act, which means his only way of stopping the funding is to filibuster the very bill he called on the House to pass—leading to a goverment shutdown.

“[Harry Reid] wants to use brute political power to force ObamaCare through with just Democrats, exactly the same way he passed the bill three years ago,” Cruz continued. “If he does that, then Senate Republicans have the tool we always use when the Majority Leader is abusing his power, which is we deny cloture.”

“You say this is brute political power,” a very-unconvinced Wallace said. “It’s Senate Rule 22, which has been around for years. It’s part of the Senate rules, and it says after you allow debate and take cloture, that you can pass an amendment by Senate majority. That’s the rule!”
“You’re right, that is one rule,” Cruz responded. “But there is another rule that says it takes sixty votes to get cloture…If the majority’s going to run the minority over with a train, the minority has the ability to stop them…Any vote for cloture, any vote to allow Harry Reid to add funding for Obamacare with just a fifty-one vote threshold—a vote for cloture is a vote for ObamaCare.”

“If Harry Reid kills this bill in the Senate, I think the House should hold its ground and should begin passing smaller continuing resolutions one department at a time,” Cruz said. “It should start with a continuing resolution focused on the military. Fund the military, send it over, and let’s see if Harry Reid is willing to shut down the military just because he wants to force ObamaCare on the American people.”

Wallace asked Cruz to respond to numerous angry Republican lawmakers, who are lambasting Cruz for talking big on defunding while kicking the onus of the movement back to the House.

“There are lots of folks in Washington that choose to throw rocks,” Cruz replied, “but I’m not going to reciprocate.”

House votes to derail Obamacare, fund government

BREAKING: House Votes to Defund Obamacare

BREAKING: House Speaker Boehner Speaks After ObamaCare Voted Defunded

“The House voted 230-189 along party lines Friday to approve a stopgap spending bill to fund the federal government through mid-December, but it is facing certain defeat in the Senate because it includes language aiming to dismantle President Obama’s health care law.

Without a stopgap spending bill, the federal government will feel the effects of a shutdown when the fiscal year ends on Sept. 30. The bill extends the current rate of government spending at $986 billion a year.

House Republicans attached a provision to defund the Affordable Care Act, a consistent target of congressional Republicans. However, the provision has no chance of approval in the Democratic-controlled Senate and it faces a veto threat from Obama.

Next week, the Senate is expected to begin debate on the spending bill, where Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., will strip out the health care language and send a bill back to the House that simply extends current spending.

If the Senate runs out the clock on the time for debate, the vote could come as late as next weekend, giving House GOP leaders less than 48 hours to respond.

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, has not committed to allowing a vote on a spending bill that does not address the health care law. House Republicans will then have three options: reject it, pass it or amend it and send it back to the Senate again.

The effects of a shutdown would not be immediately felt by most Americans. Essential government programs such as air traffic control, Social Security, Medicare and mail delivery would all continue, but national parks and museums would be closed, and agency operations would slow down or stop. The White House and the U.S. Congress would continue to operate as well.

But the political risks are great. The last time the government shut down was during the Clinton administration in a budget battle against Republicans led by then-speaker Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., which resulted in a public backlash against the GOP.

Boehner has said Republicans are not seeking a government shutdown, but eye it as an opportunity to start a broader offensive against the health care law. Republicans are also seeking to delay the implementation of the law for one year in exchange for raising the debt ceiling, the nation’s borrowing limit.”

Rep. Salmon: Defunding Obamacare “the will of the people”

Sen Ted Cruz with Neil Cavuto on Defunding Obamacare

Ted Cruz on Defunding Obamacare, the Grassroots Tsunami, and More on CNN’s State of the Union

DeMint and Beck on Defunding Obamacare

House passes spending bill to defund Obamacare

By Stephen Dinan

House Republicans passed their stopgap funding bill Friday to keep government open while terminating the new health care law, setting up a final showdown next week with Senate Democrats and President Obama who have firmly rejected the GOP approach.

The 230-189 vote, which split almost exactly along party lines, is the precursor to the big action next week, when the Democratic majority in the Senate is expected to strip out the health care provisions and send the bill back to the House — where Republicans will have to decide whether they can accept it at that point.

All sides are racing to beat a Sept. 30 deadline, which is when current funding for the federal government runs out. The new measure would fund the government through Dec. 15, essentially at last year’s levels, and would leave the budget sequester cuts in place.

But Republicans on Friday also attached two amendments to the final bill — one to direct how government spending is prioritized in the event the Treasury Department bumps up against its borrowing limit in the coming weeks, and another that strips out funding for President Obama’s signature Affordable Care Act, which would effectively stop its implementation.

“The American people don’t want the government shut down, and they don’t want Obamacare,” said House Speaker John A. Boehner, who rallied with fellow Republicans after the vote in a show of unity that seemed designed to quell speculation about a rebellion within the House Republican Conference.

Republicans said the move was designed to put some Democratic senators on the spot. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor named several who are up for re-election next year, including Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu and Alaska Sen. Mark Begich.

Democrats said the bill was an outrage that exposed Republicans’ true intention of trying to force a government shutdown.

“It is a wolf in wolf’s clothing,” said Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, California Democrat. “Either you don’t know what you’re doing or this is one of the most intentional acts of brutality you’ve cooked up.”

Rep. Nita Lowey, the top Democrat on the House spending committee, said limiting government funding now would immediate consequences, such as preventing federal authorities from being able to help out as Colorado recovers from devastating floods.

Democrats urged the GOP to negotiate with them to raise taxes in order to spend more.

Republicans countered that if they’d wanted to shut down government, they wouldn’t have brought any bill to the floor.

“We are pragmatists. We know we have to pass bills to fund government. Thus this bill,” said House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers, Kentucky Republican.

Read more: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/sep/20/house-passes-spending-bill-defund-obamacare/#ixzz2fjziMFjQ
Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter

51% Favor Government Shutdown Until Congress Cuts Health Care Funding

President Obama yesterday criticized congressional Republicans for insisting on spending cuts in any budget deal that continues government operations past October 1, saying they risk “economic chaos.” Most voters agree a federal government shutdown would be bad for the economy, but they’re willing to risk one until Democrats and Republicans in Congress agree on ways to cut the budget, including cuts in funding for the new national health care law.

Just 20% of Likely U.S. Voters believe a partial shutdown of the federal government would be good for economy, according to a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey. Fifty-six percent (56%) say such a shutdown would be bad for the economy, even though payments for things like Social Security, Medicare and unemployment would continue. Sixteen percent (16%) think it would have no impact. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

But 58% favor a federal budget that cuts spending, while only 16% prefer one that increases spending. Twenty-one percent (21%) support a budget that keeps spending levels about the same.

This helps explain why 53% would rather have a partial government shutdown until Democrats and Republicans can agree on what spending to cut. Thirty-seven percent (37%) would prefer instead that Congress avoid a shutdown by authorizing spending at existing levels as the president has proposed.

Some conservative Republicans in both the House and Senate are refusing to approve a budget unless it slows or stops funding for the health care law, but the president and most congressional Democrats are adamantly opposed to any such cuts. However, 51% of voters favor having a partial government shutdown until Democrats and Republicans agree on what spending for the health care law to cut. Forty percent (40%) would rather avoid a government shutdown by authorizing spending for the health care law at existing levels.

Late last month, 42% of Republicans said threatening to vote against a government funding bill unless it cuts off funds for the health care law will help the GOP. Twenty-eight percent (28%) disagreed, while 14% said it would have no impact. Fifty-two percent (52%) of Democrats and 48% of unaffiliateds thought it would hurt Republicans.

Most voters continue to dislike the health care law, and 54% expect it to increase, not reduce, health care costs. From the beginning of the debate over the law four years ago, voters have consistently said that cost is their number one health care concern.

Under the health care law, uninsured Americas are required to have health insurance by January 1, and failure to do so could result in sizable penalties. Now that the president has delayed implementation of the employer mandate portion of his new national health care law, 56% of voters think he also should delay the requirement that every American buy or obtain health insurance.

(Want a free daily e-mail update? If it’s in the news, it’s in our polls).  Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook.

The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on September 14-15, 2013 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

The president sounded similar dire economic warnings before the so-called sequester automatic budget cuts kicked in March 1, but even after some highly publicized flight delays that were blamed on the sequester, just 24% of voters felt government spending was cut too much. Forty-four percent (44%) said spending wasn’t cut enough. Now, interestingly, the president is proposing continuing federal spending at least in the short term at the lower levels set by the sequester.

Fifty-six percent (56%) of Americans think that when government agencies are forced to cut their budgets, they generally cut popular programs first to make the cuts seem more significant.

Democrats are far more concerned about the prospects of a government shutdown than Republicans and unaffiliated voters are. Seventy-nine percent (79%) of voters in the president’s party think a partial shutdown would be bad for the economy, but just 40% of GOP voters and 48% of those not affiliated with either of the major parties agree. But then 78% of Republicans and 64% of unaffiliateds favor a federal budget that cuts spending, a view shared by just 34% of Democrats.

Sixty-three percent (63%) of Democrats agree with the president and would prefer to avoid a shutdown by authorizing spending at existing levels. Seventy-four percent (74%) of Republicans and 62% of unaffiliated voters would rather have a shutdown until the two sides can agree on what spending to cut.

Similarly, 78% of GOP voters and 57% of unaffiliateds like the idea of a partial shutdown until Democrats and Republicans  can agree on what spending for the health care law can be cut. Sixty-nine percent (69%) of Democrats favor instead avoiding a shutdown by authorizing spending for the law at existing levels.

Looking to the future, 80% of GOP voters believe it is more important for their party to stand for what it believes in rather than to work with the president. Right now, 65% of Likely Republican Voters think Republicans in Congress have lost touch with GOP voters from throughout the nation over the last several years, while 59% of Likely Democratic Voters think Democrats in Congress have done a good job of representing their party’s values.

The president and congressional Democrats have tied many of their criticisms of the Republican budget positions to the Tea Party. Just 39% of all voters now have a favorable opinion of the Tea Party, although 78% of Republicans believe it’s at least somewhat important for their leaders in Congress to work with the Tea Party, including 45% who think it’s Very Important.

While voters are more critical of the Tea Party itself, most continue to agree with its small government principles. Sixty-four percent (64%) prefer a smaller government with fewer services and lower taxes over a larger one with more services and higher taxes. Sixty-two percent (62%) think the government should cut spending rather than increase it in reaction to the nation’s economic problems.

Seventy-seven percent (77%) of all likely voters say they have been following recent news stories about the federal budget debate in Congress, with 42% who say they are following Very Closely.

Additional information from this survey and a full demographic breakdown are available to Platinum Members only.

Please sign up for the Rasmussen Reports daily e-mail update (it’s free) or follow us on Twitter or Facebook. Let us keep you up to date with the latest public opinion news.

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/general_politics/september_2013/51_favor_government_shutdown_until_congress_cuts_health_care_funding

Obamacare Will Increase Health Spending By $7,450 For A Typical Family of Four

Chris Conover, Contributor

It was one of candidate Obama’s most vivid and concrete campaign promises. Forget about high minded (some might say high sounding) but gauzy promises of hope and change. This candidate solemnly pledged on June 5, 2008: “In an Obama administration, we’ll lower premiums by up to $2,500 for a typical family per year….. We’ll do it by the end of my first term as President of the United States.”  Unfortunately, the experts working for Medicare’s actuary have (yet again[1]) reported that in its first 10 years, Obamacare will boost healthspending by “roughly $621 billion” above the amounts Americans would have spent without this misguided law.

What this means for a typical family of four

$621 billion is a pretty eye-glazing number. Most readers will find it easier to think about how this number translates to a typical American family—the very family candidate Obama promised would see $2,500 in annual savings as far as the eye could see. So I have taken the latest year-by-year projections, divided by the projected U.S. population to determine the added amount per person and multiplied the result by 4.

Interactive Guide: What Will Obamacare Cost You?

Simplistic? Maybe, but so too was the President’s campaign promise. And this approach allows us to see just how badly that promise fell short of the mark. Between 2014 and 2022, the increase in national health spending (which the Medicare actuaries specifically attribute to the law) amounts to $7,450 per family of 4.

CostperFamily

Let us hope this family hasn’t already spent or borrowed the $22,500 in savings they might have expected over this same period had they taken candidate Obama’s promise at face value. In truth, no well-informed American ever should have believed this absurd promise. At the time, Factcheck.org charitably deemed this claim as “overly optimistic, misleading and, to some extent, contradicted by one of his own advisers.”  TheWashington Post less charitably awarded it Two Pinocchios (“Significant omissions or exaggerations”). Yet rather than learn from his mistakes, President Obama on July 16, 2012 essentially doubled-down on his promise, assuring small business owners “your premiums will go down.” He made this assertion notwithstanding the fact that in three separate reports between April 2010 and June 2012, the Medicare actuaries had demonstrated that the ACA would increase health spending. To its credit, the Washington Post dutifully awarded the 2012 claim Three Pinocchios (“Significant factual error and/or obvious contradictions.”)

The past is not prologue: The burden increases ten-fold in 2014

As it turns out, the average family of 4 has only had to face a relatively modest burden from Obamacare over the past four years—a little over $125. Unfortunately, this year’s average burden ($66) will be 10 times as large in 2014 when Obamacare kicks in for earnest. And it will rise for two years after that, after which it hit a steady-state level of just under $800 a year. Of course, all these figures are in nominal dollars. In terms of today’s purchasing power, this annual amount will rise steadily.

But what happened to the spending slowdown?

Some readers may recall that a few months ago, there were widespread reports of a slow-down in health spending. Not surprisingly, the White House has been quick to claim credit for the slowdown in health spending documented in the health spending projections report, arguing that it “is good for families, jobs and the budget.”

On this blog, Avik Roy pointed out that a) since passage of Obamacare, U.S. health spending actually had risen faster than in OECD countries, whereas prior to the law, the opposite was true. Moreover, to the degree that U.S. health spending was slowing down relative to its own recent past, greater cost-sharing was likely to be the principal explanation. Medicare’s actuarial experts confirm that the lion’s share of the slowdown in health spending could be chalked up to slow growth in the economy and greater cost-sharing. As AEI scholar Jim Capretta pithily puts it:

An important takeaway from these new projections is that the CMS Office of the Actuary finds no evidence to link the 2010 health care law to the recent slowdown in health care cost escalation. Indeed, the authors of the projections make it clear that the slowdown is not out of line with the historical link between health spending growth and economic conditions (emphasis added).

In the interests of fair and honest reporting, perhaps it is time the mainstream media begin using “Affordable” Care Act whenever reference is made to this terribly misguided law. Anyone obviously is welcome to quarrel with the Medicare actuary about their numbers. I myself am hard-put to challenge their central conclusion: Obamacare will not save Americans one penny now or in the future. Perhaps the next time voters encounter a politician making such grandiose claims, they will learn to watch their wallet. Until then, let’s spare strapped Americans from having to find $657 in spare change between their couch cushions next year. Let’s delay this law for a year so that policymakers have time to fix the poorly designed Rube Goldberg device known as Obamacare. For a nation with the most complicated and expensive health system on the planet, making it even more complicated and even more expensive never was a good idea.

Footnotes

[1] The Medicare actuary first issued a report carefully estimating the cost impact of Obamacare on April 22, 2010. Its annual national health expenditure projections reports for 2010, 2011 and 2012 all have contained tabulations showing that Obamacare will increase health spending over the next 10 years compared to a counterfactual scenario in which the law was never enacted.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/theapothecary/2013/09/23/its-official-obamacare-will-increase-health-spending-by-7450-for-a-typical-family-of-four/

House Democrats Raise Big Money Off Republican Push To ‘Defund Obamacare’

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee raised more than $840,000 in online contributions since House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) announced last week that Republicans would include a measure to strip funding from the Affordable Care Act in a continuing resolution to fund the federal government.

The House Democratic party committee launched an online petition and blasted its large list of supporters for contributions to fight back against House Republicans immediately after Boehner’s Tuesday announcement.

The DCCC’s blast emails attacked House Republicans’ “extortion tactics” and their “complete cave to Tea Party Republicans.” Supporters were asked to donate $3 to the DCCC’s ObamaCare Rapid Response Fund.

By Sunday morning, two days after Republicans successfully passed a continuing budget resolution that would defund the health care law, the petition had more than 1 million signatures and the committee received 46,000 online donations, according to a DCCC aide. The average donation was $18.

“From the moment John Boehner and House Republicans announced that they would put this country on a path to shutdown — all so they could give insurance companies free rein, our grassroots supporters jumped into action,” DCCC press secretary Emily Bittner said in a statement. “Every time House Republicans demonstrate their priorities — protecting the wealthy, padding health insurance profits and forcing the middle class to pay more — our grassroots steps up.”

In the past two months, Republican groups have done their own fundraising off their push to defund President Barack Obama’s signature health care reform law. The Senate Conservatives Fund, a political action committee tied to Heritage Foundation president and former South Carolina Senator Jim DeMint, had its best off-election year fundraising month ever in August while running its “Don’t Fund Obamacare” website.

This week’s fundraising swell for the DCCC is comparable to two of its best online fundraising spurts in recent memory: the unveiling of the budget presented by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), and the week Ryan was announced as Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s running mate.

While the push to defund Obamacare has been a boon to fundraising on both sides, it’s unlikely to go much further. Senate Democrats, who control the chamber, will not approve or even bring a bill to the floor that would defund the health care law, and Obama slammed the effort while threatening a veto. Even Senate Republicans, including the voice of Obamacare opposition Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), have said the measure is going nowhere.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/09/22/house-democrats-defund-obamacare_n_3971793.html

Lower Health Insurance Premiums to Come at Cost of Fewer Choices

By 

Federal officials often say that health insurance will cost consumers less than expected under President Obama’shealth care law. But they rarely mention one big reason: many insurers are significantly limiting the choices of doctors and hospitals available to consumers.

From California to Illinois to New Hampshire, and in many states in between, insurers are driving down premiums by restricting the number of providers who will treat patients in their new health plans.

When insurance marketplaces open on Oct. 1, most of those shopping for coverage will be low- and moderate-income people for whom price is paramount. To hold down costs, insurers say, they have created smaller networks of doctors and hospitals than are typically found in commercial insurance. And those health care providers will, in many cases, be paid less than what they have been receiving from commercial insurers.

Some consumer advocates and health care providers are increasingly concerned. Decades of experience with Medicaid, the program for low-income people, show that having an insurance card does not guarantee access to specialists or other providers.

Consumers should be prepared for “much tighter, narrower networks” of doctors and hospitals, said Adam M. Linker, a health policy analyst at the North Carolina Justice Center, a statewide advocacy group.

“That can be positive for consumers if it holds down premiums and drives people to higher-quality providers,” Mr. Linker said. “But there is also a risk because, under some health plans, consumers can end up with astronomical costs if they go to providers outside the network.”

Insurers say that with a smaller array of doctors and hospitals, they can offer lower-cost policies and have more control over the quality of health care providers. They also say that having insurance with a limited network of providers is better than having no coverage at all.

Cigna illustrates the strategy of many insurers. It intends to participate next year in the insurance marketplaces, or exchanges, in Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Tennessee and Texas.

“The networks will be narrower than the networks typically offered to large groups of employees in the commercial market,” said Joseph Mondy, a spokesman for Cigna.

The current concerns echo some of the criticism that sank the Clinton administration’s plan for universal coverage in 1993-94. Republicans said the Clinton proposals threatened to limit patients’ options, their access to care and their choice of doctors.

At the same time, House Republicans are continuing to attack the new health law and are threatening to hold up a spending bill unless money is taken away from the health care program.

In a new study, the Health Research Institute of PricewaterhouseCoopers, the consulting company, says that “insurers passed over major medical centers” when selecting providers in California, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky and Tennessee, among other states.

“Doing so enables health plans to offer lower premiums,” the study said. “But the use of narrow networks may also lead to higher out-of-pocket expenses, especially if a patient has a complex medical problem that’s being treated at a hospital that has been excluded from their health plan.”

In California, the statewide Blue Shield plan has developed a network specifically for consumers shopping in the insurance exchange.

Juan Carlos Davila, an executive vice president of Blue Shield of California, said the network for its exchange plans had 30,000 doctors, or 53 percent of the 57,000 doctors in its broadest commercial network, and 235 hospitals, or 78 percent of the 302 hospitals in its broadest network.

Mr. Davila said the new network did not include the five medical centers of the University of California or the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center near Beverly Hills.

“We expect to have the broadest and deepest network of any plan in California,” Mr. Davila said. “But not many folks who are uninsured or near the poverty line live in wealthy communities like Beverly Hills.”

Daniel R. Hawkins Jr., a senior vice president of the National Association of Community Health Centers, which represents 9,000 clinics around the country, said: “We serve the very population that will gain coverage — low-income, working class uninsured people.But insurers have shown little interest in including us in their provider networks.”

Dr. Bruce Siegel, the president of America’s Essential Hospitals, formerly known as the National Association of Public Hospitals and Health Systems, said insurers were telling his members: “We don’t want you in our network. We are worried about having your patients, who are sick and have complicated conditions.”

In some cases, Dr. Siegel said, “health plans will cover only selected services at our hospitals, like trauma care, or they offer rock-bottom payment rates.”

In New Hampshire, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield, a unit of WellPoint, one of the nation’s largest insurers, has touched off a furor by excluding 10 of the state’s 26 hospitals from the health plans that it will sell through the insurance exchange.

Christopher R. Dugan, a spokesman for Anthem, said that premiums for this “select provider network” were about 25 percent lower than they would have been for a product using a broad network of doctors and hospitals.

Anthem is the only commercial carrier offering health plans in the New Hampshire exchange.

Peter L. Gosline, the chief executive of Monadnock Community Hospital in Peterborough, N.H., said his hospital had been excluded from the network without any discussions or negotiations.

“Many consumers will have to drive 30 minutes to an hour to reach other doctors and hospitals,” Mr. Gosline said. “It’s very inconvenient for patients, and at times it’s a hardship.”

State Senator Andy Sanborn, a Republican who is chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, said, “The people of New Hampshire are really upset about this.”

Many physician groups in New Hampshire are owned by hospitals, so when an insurer excludes a hospital from its network, it often excludes the doctors as well.

David Sandor, a vice president of the Health Care Service Corporation, which offers Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans in Illinois, Montana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas, said: “In the health insurance exchange, most individuals will be making choices based on costs. Our exchange products will have smaller provider networks that cost less than bigger plans with a larger selection of doctors and hospitals.”

Premiums will vary across the country, but federal officials said that consumers in many states would be able to buy insurance on the exchange for less than $300 a month — and less than $100 a month per person after taking account of federal subsidies.

“Competition and consumer choice are actually making insurance affordable,” Mr. Obama said recently.

Many insurers are cutting costs by slicing doctors’ fees.

Dr. Barbara L. McAneny, a cancer specialist in Albuquerque, said that insurers in the New Mexico exchange were generally paying doctors at Medicare levels, which she said were “often below our cost of doing business, and definitely below commercial rates.”

Outsiders might expect insurance companies to expand their networks to treat additional patients next year. But many insurers see advantages in narrow networks, saying they can steer patients to less expensive doctors and hospitals that provide high-quality care.

Even though insurers will be forbidden to discriminate against people with pre-existing conditions, they could subtly discourage the enrollment of sicker patients by limiting the size of their provider networks.

“If a health plan has a narrow network that excludes many doctors, that may shoo away patients with expensive pre-existing conditions who have established relationships with doctors,” said Mark E. Rust, the chairman of the national health care practice at Barnes & Thornburg, a law firm. “Some insurers do not want those patients who, for medical reasons, require a broad network of providers.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/23/health/lower-health-insurance-premiums-to-come-at-cost-of-fewer-choices.html?pagewanted=2&_r=0#h[]

Federal Spending by the Numbers, 2013: Government Spending Trends in Graphics, Tables, and Key Points

,  and 

Introduction

In 2013, federal spending approached $3.5 trillion and the deficit dropped to “only” $642 billion. Some are using this small improvement in the nation’s fiscal situation to avoid further budget tightening. But as the figures and graphics in this report show, this is the wrong conclusion to draw. Following four years of trillion-dollar deficits, the national debt will still reach nearly $17 trillion and exceed 100 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) at the end of the year. Publicly held debt (the debt borrowed in credit markets, excluding Social Security’s trust fund, for example), is alarmingly high at three-quarters of GDP. Without further spending cuts, it is on track to rise to a level last seen after World War II.

Deficits fell in 2013 because President Obama and Congress raised taxes on all Americans, the economy saw slight improvement which helped to bring in more revenue, and spending cuts from sequestration and spending caps under the Budget Control Act of 2011 took effect.

The nation should not take this short-term and modest deficit improvement as a signal to grow complacent about reining in exploding spending. Though deficits will decline for a few more years, existing spending cuts and tax increases will not prevent them from rising soon, and within a decade exceeding $1 trillion once again. Driving this is federal spending which, despite sequestration cuts, will grow 69 percent by 2023.

The nation’s long-term spending trajectory remains on a fiscal collision course. Total spending has exploded by 40 percent since 2002, even after inflation. Some programs have grown far in excess of that. Defense, however, has been slashed. Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and Obamacare are so large and growing that they are on track to overwhelm the federal budget. While the Budget Control Act of 2011 and sequestration are modestly restraining the discretionary budget, mandatory spending—including entitlements—continues growing nearly unabated. Without any changes, mandatory spending, including net interest, will consume three-fourths of the budget in just one decade.

Obamacare will add $1.8 trillion to federal health care spending by 2023. By 2015, health care spending will overtake Social Security as the largest budget item, including Obamacare’s coverage expansion provisions: a massive expansion of Medicaid and subsidies for the new health insurance exchanges.

While mandatory spending is growing out of control and needs reform, there are also plenty of places to cut in the rest of the budget. For example, the Internal Revenue Service spent $4.1 million on a lavish conference in 2010 for 2,609 of its employees in Anaheim, California. Expenses included $50,000 for line-dancing and “Star Trek” parody videos, $135,350 for outside speakers, $64,000 in conference “swag” for the employees, plus free meals, cocktails, and hotel suite upgrades.

Beyond waste, the federal government is too big. Energy spending increased over 2,000 percent since 2002—after adjusting for inflation. Today there are roughly 80 means-tested anti-poverty programs.

Washington must stop kicking the can down the road, or we could soon find ourselves teetering on the edge of a Greece-style meltdown. Instead, lawmakers should eliminate waste, duplication, and inappropriate spending; privatize functions better left to the private sector; and leave areas best managed on a more local level to states and localities. And they should make important changes to the entitlement programs so that they become more affordable and benefits help those with the greatest needs.

It is not too late to solve the impending spending and debt crisis, but the clock is ticking.

The Federal Budget

  • Washington will spend nearly $3.5 trillion in 2013 while collecting $2.8 trillion in revenues, resulting in a deficit of $642 billion.
  • Over the past 20 years, federal spending grew 63 percent faster than inflation.
  • Mandatory spending, including Social Security and means-tested entitlements, doubled after adjusting for inflation. Discretionary spending grew by 49 percent.
  • Despite publicly held debt surging to three-fourths the size of the economy (as measured by GDP), net interest costs have fallen as interest rates have dropped to historic lows.
  • In 1963, defense spending was 9 percent of GDP and mandatory spending on entitlement programs was 6.1 percent of GDP, one-third lower.
  • In 2013, spending on defense is at about 4 percen
  • ing.

http://www.heritage.org/search?query=budget+charts

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The War Powers Act and Obama’s Unprecedented War Power Claims — Videos

Posted on September 20, 2013. Filed under: Blogroll, College, Communications, Constitution, Crime, Diasters, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government spending, History of Economic Thought, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Psychology, Rants, Raves, Security, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , |

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Richland Celebrates Constitution Day

By Raymond Thomas Pronk

Constitution_page_1

United States Constitution   Credit: historicdocumentsofamerica.com

Richland students celebrated Constitution day Sept. 17 by learning how the United States goes to war.

Dr. Edward J. Harpham, associate provost and professor of political science at the University of Texas at Dallas, presented a lecture and answered questions on how the Constitution and Wars Powers Resolution of 1973 applies to the possible use of military force in Syria. Harplam earned his masters and doctorate degrees in political science from Cornell University.

President Barack Obama initially sought a Congressional resolution authorizing military operations against the Assad regime in Syria for using chemical weapons against his people. The Assad regime had crossed the red line set by Obama in a press conference on Aug. 20, 2012.

However, Obama in his Sept. 10 televised address to the nation on Syria asked congressional leaders to postpone a vote on a resolution authorizing the use of force. Obama wanted time for Secretary of State John Kerry to pursue a diplomatic initiative proposed by Russia and agreed to by Syria that could lead to the eventual destruction of chemical weapons controlled by the Syrian military.

In the absence of an emergency, where Congress has no time to react, Obama does not have the legal authority under the Constitution, the War Powers Resolutions or a United Nation’s Security Council resolution funded by Congress, to unilaterally attack Syria.

In a future military crisis a problem might arise if Congress votes down a presidential request for military action and the president ignores Congress and proceeds with military operations anyway.

Harpham concisely summarized the history of the authorities used by U.S. presidents to go to war and possible solutions to the shortcomings of the War Powers Resolution process.

Article 1, Section 8, Clause 11 of the Constitution gives Congress the power to declare war. Congress has exercised this power only five times: for the War of 1812 upon the United Kingdom, the Mexican-American War, the Spanish-American War, World War I upon Germany and Austria-Hungary and World War II upon Japan, Germany, Italy, Bulgaria, Hungary and Romania.

However, the United States has used military force many  times without Congress declaring war. Instead, Congress passes resolutions authorizing the use of military force. This was done for the Lebanon crisis of 1958, the Vietnam War, Multinational Force in Lebanon in 1983, the Gulf War in 1991, the 2001 war in Afghanistan and the Iraq War.

Congress has also authorized funds for extended military operations for United Nations Security Council Resolutions such as the Korean War, the Multinational Force in Lebanon in 1978, the Gulf War, the Bosnian War in 1992 and the intervention in Libya in 2011.

On more than 100 occasions presidents acting in their capacity as commander in chief have authorized the deployment of troops and the use of military force without a congressional declaration of war or a resolution authorizing military force.

After the withdrawal of American troops from Vietnam in 1973, Congress wanted to limit the power of the president to deploy troops for extended periods of time without a congressional declaration of war or resolution.

In 1973 Congress passed the War Powers Resolution of 1973, a joint resolution over the veto of President Richard M. Nixon.  When Congress has not declared war or authorized  the use of military force, the law requires the president to notify Congress within 48 hours of committing armed forces to military action. It also prohibits armed forces for remaining more than 60 days but allows an additional 30 days as a withdrawal period.

Harpham offered several possible solutions to the War Powers Resolution process, including revoking the law and replacing it with a new law or preferably a constitutional amendment that would address the president’s use of force where a military emergency, Congressional declaration of war, resolution or funding has not been authorized.

Harpham’s presentation will be posted on the Richland Chronicle Television archives for those who missed the lecture (richlandchronicle.com/chronicletv).

Raymond Thomas Pronk presents the Pronk Pops Show on KDUX web radio from 4-5 p.m. Monday thru Thursday and from 3-5 p.m. Friday and authors the companion blog http://www.pronkpops.wordpress.com. You can listen to an interview with Harpham on the Pronk Pops Show 131, Sept. 17, by going to http://www.pronkpops.wordpress.com.

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Benghazi Scandal Update — Videos

Posted on September 19, 2013. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Communications, Constitution, Crime, Demographics, Diasters, Economics, Education, Energy, European History, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government spending, history, Islam, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Press, Psychology, Raves, Strategy, Tax Policy, Technology, Video, War, Weapons, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , |

Revised and Updated October 2015

2014-05-02-CBS-EN-Benghazi_Graphicbenghazi_north_africa62870604_benghazi_us_consbenghazi-compound650px-U.S._mission_and_annex_map_for_2012_Benghazi_attack   good_map_benghazi  compound002b
consulate-real-w-discriptors  smcannex_mapRAMclr-010713-nytimes-IBD-COLOR-FINAL_gif

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No Tapering! — Spending Addiction Disorder (SAD) — Fed Must Continue Massive Financing of Deficits and Debt of Federal Government — Digital Electronic Money (DEM) Creation Continues At $85 Billion Per Month or $1,020 Billion Per Year Pace — U.S. Economy Stagnating Below 3 Percent GDP Growth Trend Line — U.S. Dollar Devalued — Currency War Continues — Abolish The Fed Videos

Posted on September 19, 2013. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, College, Communications, Economics, Education, Employment, European History, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, government spending, history, History of Economic Thought, Inflation, Investments, IRS, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Macroeconomics, media, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Programming, Psychology, Raves, Regulations, Resources, Security, Strategy, Talk Radio, Tax Policy, Taxes, Technology, Unemployment, Video, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

5-reasons-the-fed-taper-will-kick-off-in-september

Tracking-the-Fed-September

U.S. National Debt Clock

BUREAU OF THE FISCAL SERVICE
                                                  STAR - TREASURY FINANCIAL DATABASE
             TABLE 1.  SUMMARY OF RECEIPTS, OUTLAYS AND THE DEFICIT/SURPLUS BY MONTH OF THE U.S. GOVERNMENT (IN MILLIONS)

                                                        ACCOUNTING DATE:  08/13

   PERIOD                                                                     RECEIPTS                OUTLAYS    DEFICIT/SURPLUS (-)
+  ____________________________________________________________  _____________________  _____________________  _____________________
   PRIOR YEAR

     OCTOBER                                                                   163,072                261,539                 98,466
     NOVEMBER                                                                  152,402                289,704                137,302
     DECEMBER                                                                  239,963                325,930                 85,967
     JANUARY                                                                   234,319                261,726                 27,407
     FEBRUARY                                                                  103,413                335,090                231,677
     MARCH                                                                     171,215                369,372                198,157
     APRIL                                                                     318,807                259,690                -59,117
     MAY                                                                       180,713                305,348                124,636
     JUNE                                                                      260,177                319,919                 59,741
     JULY                                                                      184,585                254,190                 69,604
     AUGUST                                                                    178,860                369,393                190,533
     SEPTEMBER                                                                 261,566                186,386                -75,180

       YEAR-TO-DATE                                                          2,449,093              3,538,286              1,089,193

   CURRENT YEAR

     OCTOBER                                                                   184,316                304,311                119,995
     NOVEMBER                                                                  161,730                333,841                172,112
     DECEMBER                                                                  269,508                270,699                  1,191
     JANUARY                                                                   272,225                269,342                 -2,883
     FEBRUARY                                                                  122,815                326,354                203,539
     MARCH                                                                     186,018                292,548                106,530
     APRIL                                                                     406,723                293,834               -112,889
     MAY                                                                       197,182                335,914                138,732
     JUNE                                                                      286,627                170,126               -116,501
     JULY                                                                      200,030                297,627                 97,597
     AUGUST                                                                    185,370                333,293                147,923

       YEAR-TO-DATE                                                          2,472,542              3,227,888                755,345

http://www.fms.treas.gov/mts/mts0813.txt

civilian_labor_participation_rate

InflationAug2013

US-Fed-Funds-Target-Rate

savings

fed_taper_bets

When-To-Taper

fed_taper

wrong_way

US Chairman of the Federal Reserve Ben Bernanke listens to questions as he testifies before a House Budget Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington

2013-09-17-bernanke-hands-over-control

janet_yellen

Tracking-the-Fed-September

Federal Reserve Vice Chair Janet Yellen addresses a conference in Washington

No Fed Taper: What Does It Mean for Your Money? (9/18/13)

Federal Reserve: No Taper (9/18/13)

Ron Paul: Fed Decision To Not Taper Is A Really Bad Sign

Ron Paul: Taper Fakeout Means Fed Is Worried

Breaking News: Federal Reserve Will Not Taper

Rick Santelli Reacts to Federal Reserve No Taper

Why The Fed. Will INCREASE, NOT DECREASE, It’s QE/Money Printing. By Gregory Mannarino

In Business – Fed Taper Pause Fuels Commodities Rally

To Taper, or Not to Taper

FED Says No Taper — We Need A War, Gun Confiscation And Control Of Internet First — Episode 166

JIM RICKARDS: Fed Will TAPER in September or Never, and the Looming MONETARY System COLLAPSE [50]

James Rickards on “Why The Fed Will NOT Taper Quantitative Easing”

Peter Schiff: “The party is coming to an end”.

JIM ROGERS – When the FED stops PRINTING FIAT CURRENCY the COLLAPSE will be here. PREPARE NOW

Fed decision Just idea of tapering caused huge ruckus

Background Articles and Videos

Milton Friedman – Abolish The Fed

Milton Friedman On John Maynard Keynes

Free to Choose Part 3: Anatomy of a Crisis (Featuring Milton Friedman)

Murray Rothbard – To Expand And Inflate

The Founding of the Federal Reserve | Murray N. Rothbard

The Origin of the Fed – Murray N. Rothbard

Murray Rothbard on Hyperinflation and Ending the Fed

Murray N. Rothbard on Milton Friedman (audio – removed noise) part 1/5

Keynes the Man: Hero or Villain? | Murray N. Rothbard

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Federal Reserve has decided against reducing its stimulus for the U.S. economy, saying it will continue to buy $85 billion a month in bonds because it thinks the economy still needs the support.

The Fed said in a statement Wednesday that it held off on tapering because it wants to see more conclusive evidence that the recovery will be sustained.

Stocks spiked after the Fed released the statement at the end of its two-day policy meeting.

In the statement, the Fed says that the economy is growing moderately and that some indicators of labor market conditions have shown improvement. But it noted that rising mortgage rates and government spending cuts are restraining growth.

The bond purchases are intended to keep long-term loan rates low to spur borrowing and spending.

The Fed also repeated that it plans to keep its key short-term interest rate near zero at least until unemployment falls to 6.5 percent, down from 7.3 percent last month. In the Fed’s most recent forecast, unemployment could reach that level as soon as late 2014.

Many thought the Fed would scale back its purchases. But interest rates have jumped since May, when Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke first said the Fed might slow its bond buys later this year. But Bernanke cautioned that the reduction would hinge on the economy showing continued improvement.

In its statement, the Fed says that the rise in interest rates “could slow the pace of improvement in the economy and labor market” if they are sustained.

The Fed also lowered its economic growth forecasts for this year and next year slightly, likely reflecting its concerns about interest rates.

The statement was approved on a 9-1 vote. Esther George, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, dissented for the sixth time this year. She repeated her concerns that the bond purchases could fuel the risk of inflation and financial instability.

The decision to maintain its stimulus follows reports of sluggish economic growth. Employers slowed hiring this summer, and consumers spent more cautiously.

Super-low rates are credited with helping fuel a housing comeback, support economic growth, drive stocks to record highs and restore the wealth of many Americans. But the average rate on the 30-year mortgage has jumped more than a full percentage point since May and was 4.57 percent last week — just below the two-year high.

The unemployment rate is now 7.3 percent, the lowest since 2008. Yet the rate has dropped in large part because many people have stopped looking for work and are no longer counted as unemployed — not because hiring has accelerated. Inflation is running below the Fed’s 2 percent target.

The Fed meeting took place at a time of uncertainty about who will succeed Bernanke when his term ends in January. On Sunday, Lawrence Summers, who was considered the leading candidate, withdrew from consideration.

Summers’ withdrawal followed growing resistance from critics. His exit has opened the door for his chief rival, Janet Yellen, the Fed’s vice chair. If chosen by President Barack Obama and confirmed by the Senate, Yellen would become the first woman to lead the Fed.

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Dishonorable Disclosures — Obama’s Leakers Risking The Lives of Americans — Time For Obama To Shutup The Foxtrot Uniform — Videos

Posted on September 19, 2013. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Communications, government spending, history, Language, Law, Life, Links, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Raves, Video, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , |

 

Insider Threat: Government Employees Urged to Tattle On Coworkers In Effort to Stop Classified Leaks

President Obama Forced Back to Podium to Answer Question about Leaks Why Program Classified

Dishonorable Disclosures: STOP Obama & Others Capitalizing on US: [Full HD Leak]

STOP the politicians, President Obama and others from politically capitalizing on US national security operations and secrets!
Intelligence and Special Operations forces are furious and frustrated at how President Obama and those in positions of authority have exploited their service for political advantage. Countless leaks, interviews and decisions by the Obama Administration and other government officials have undermined the success of our Intelligence and Special Operations forces and put future missions and personnel at risk.

The unwarranted and dangerous public disclosure of Special Forces Operations is so serious — that for the first time ever — former operators have agreed to risk their reputations and go ‘on the record’ in a special documentary titled “Dishonorable Disclosures.” Its goal is to educate America about serious breaches of security and prevent them from ever happening again.

Department of Justice Prematurely Rules Out Appointing Special Prosecutor on Classified Leaks

Ok For White House To Leak Classified Info, But Not Whistleblowers

FOX NEWS: Obama’s National Insider Threat Policy plugging more leaks

 

Bin Laden secrets leaked to Hollywood by the Obama administration

Obama Administration Leaked Information For Political Gain

Pat Caddell Names National Security Advisor Tom Donilon As Source For Top Security Leaks

Petraeus Affair – Classified Information Leak?

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What is Obama Hiding About The Benghazi Scandal? Libyans Arms and Fighters Shipped To Free Syrian Army and Terrorists in Syria — Videos

Posted on September 18, 2013. Filed under: Uncategorized |

House Oversight Draft Report on Benghazi shows ARB never fully investigated Hillary Clinton

Benghazi Scandal – Benghazi Committee Urged Firing But 2 Staffers Reportedly Back On The Job

National Security Advisor Susan Rice (Benghazi Scandal) To Brief Lawmakers On Syria Tomorrow 9/11

Benghazi Scandal – Benghazi Attack – Justice Delayed & Why? – Special Report – Wake Up America

Benghazi Talking Points New Calls For All E Mail To Be Released By Obama Admin Megyn Kelly

Benghazi Scandal – Will Benghazi Survivors Testify? – Reporter Grills State Dept Spokesperson

Benghazi Scandal – Benghazi One Year Later – High Tech Weapons With Night Vision Targeting Missing

Benghazi Scandal Investigation Widening Lawmakers Seek Interviews Of 13 Top Officials

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World Class Phony President Barack Obama’s Phony Scandals – Truth and Consequences- Videos

Posted on September 18, 2013. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Communications, Constitution, Demographics, Economics, Employment, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, history, Islam, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, People, Philosophy, Photos | Tags: , , , , |

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Benghazi-exposed

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A Diplomatic Security (DS) special agent (left) watches the crowd as U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (2nd from left) and Haitian President Rene Preval (right) answer journalists’ questions January 16, 2010, in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, about rescue and relief efforts in the aftermath of the January 12, 2010, earthquake that left tens of thousands of Haitians dead. (AP Photo)
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Washington has taken its eye off  the ball. It is time to stop this endless parade of  distractions and political posturing and phony scandals.

President Barack Obama

Obama Says Scandals Happening Under his Watch Are ‘Phony Scandals’

Benghazi probe didn’t go far enough, Republicans claim

A new congressional report targets the investigation of the attack that killed America’s ambassador to Libya two years ago. Republicans on the House Oversight Committee claim the Benghazi probe didn’t go far enough. Sharyl Attkisson reports on what some are saying on Capitol Hill.

Benghazi Scandal “Phony Scandal?” – David Ubben Fought Alongside FMR Navy Seal To Protect Consulate

Benghazi Survivors Spent 20 Hours Waiting For Medical Help
David Ubben Fought Alongside FMR Navy Seal To Protect Consulate – Spent 20 Hours Waiting For Medical Help With a Shredded Right Leg!
New Details About Benghazi Survivor Who Risked Life To Save Colleagues
Who Order Stand Down Order??

Fox News  David Ubben Is the Benghazi Survivor Who Is Still Recovering at Walter Reed

Obama’s Selective Phony Accents

Obama Is So Damn Phony About Everything

Obama Says Benghazi. NSA, and IRS scandals are fake

[youube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AC-WwVPq66U]

Judge Jeanine Pirro – Opening Statement – Destroys Obama Admin. On ‘Phony Scandals’ – 7/27/13

Pastor Manning – We have been ruled by ‘Fake President’ called barack obama a liar

[youube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nhIHGjTF770]

Obama and he Art of Phoniness

By  Thomas Sowell

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The president is more concerned about the effect of his words than their relation to fact.

Many years ago, I was a member of a committee that was recommending to whom grant money should be awarded. Since I knew one of the applicants, I asked if this meant that I should recuse myself from voting on his application.

“No,” the chairman said. “I know him too — and he is one of the truly great phonies of our time.”

The man was indeed a very talented phony. He could convince almost anybody of almost anything — provided that they were not already knowledgeable about the subject. He had once spoken to me very authoritatively about Marxian economics, apparently unaware that I was one of the few people who had read all three volumes of Marx’s Capital and had published articles on Marxian economics in scholarly journals. What our glib talker was saying might have seemed impressive to someone who had never read Capital, as most people have not. But it was complete nonsense to me.

Incidentally, he did not get the grant he applied for.

This episode came back to me recently, as I read an incisive column by Charles Krauthammer, citing some of the many gaffes in public statements by the president of the United States. One presidential gaffe in particular gives the flavor and suggests the reason for many others. It involved the Falkland Islands.

Argentina has recently been demanding that Britain return the Falkland Islands, which have been occupied by Britons for nearly two centuries. In 1982, Argentina seized these islands by force, only to have British prime minister Margaret Thatcher take the islands back by force.

With Argentina today beset by domestic problems, demanding the return of the Falklands is once again a way for Argentina’s government to distract the Argentine public’s attention from the country’s economic and other woes.

Because the Argentines call these islands “the Malvinas,” rather than “the Falklands,” Barack Obama decided to use the Argentine term. But he referred to them as “the Maldives.” It so happens that the Maldives are thousands of miles away from the Malvinas. The former are in the Indian Ocean, while the latter are in the South Atlantic.

Nor is this the only gross misstatement that President Obama has gotten away with, thanks to the mainstream media, which sees no evil, hears no evil, and speaks no evil when it comes to Obama.

The presidential gaffe that struck me when I heard it was Barack Obama’s reference to a military corps as a military “corpse.” He is obviously a man who is used to sounding off about things he has paid little or no attention to in the past. His mispronunciation of a common military term was especially revealing to someone who was once in the Marine Corps, not Marine “corpse.”

Like other truly talented phonies, Barack Obama concentrates his skills on the effect of his words on other people — most of whom do not have the time to become knowledgeable about the things he is talking about. Whether what he says bears any relationship to the facts is politically irrelevant. A talented con man or a slick politician does not waste his time trying to convince knowledgeable skeptics. His job is to keep the true believers believing. He is not going to convince the others anyway.

Back during Barack Obama’s first year in office, he kept repeating, with great apparent earnestness, that there were “shovel-ready” projects that would quickly provide many much-needed jobs, if only his spending plans were approved by Congress. He seemed very convincing — if you didn’t know how long it can take for any construction project to get started. Going through a bureaucratic maze of environmental-impact studies, zoning-commission rulings, and other procedures can delay even the smallest and simplest project for years.

Only about a year or so after his big spending programs were approved by Congress, Barack Obama himself laughed at how slowly everything was going on his supposedly “shovel-ready” projects.

One wonders how he will laugh when all his golden promises about Obamacare turn out to be false and a medical disaster. Or when his foreign-policy fiascoes in the Middle East are climaxed by a nuclear Iran.

http://www.nationalreview.com/article/356900/obama-and-art-phoniness-thomas-sowell

State Department’s Benghazi review let senior officials off the hook, report  finds

The State Department review of the Benghazi terror attack let senior  officials off the hook for the policy decisions that led to sub-standard  security at the U.S. compound in eastern Libya, according to a draft House  committee report obtained by Fox News.

The nearly 100-page report concludes that the State Department’s internal  review board — called the Accountability Review Board, or ARB — was flawed.  The report by Republicans on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee  alleges the board’s probe was not comprehensive, its interviews were not  thorough, and the investigation itself may have been damaged by conflicts of  interest.

A central finding is that the department, as a result of the board’s  findings, meted out discipline to four mid-level officials (who were later  re-instated anyway), but the board glossed over the actions and decisions of  senior-level officials. The report claims the internal review identified many of  the security problems with the Benghazi compound, while ignoring who was behind  the policy decisions that led to them.

Specifically, the report points to the authorization by Under Secretary for  Management Patrick Kennedy to continue operating the ad hoc compound in  Benghazi. The interim report found that a December 2011 action memo, prepared by  Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs Jeffrey Feltman and signed  off on by Kennedy, green-lighted the operation. Witnesses told Republican  investigators that this decision to run the operation on an ad hoc basis was  largely responsible for the inadequate security presence on the ground in  Benghazi, not money.

The report also noted that it’s unclear which other senior leaders were  involved in this decision but said it is likely, based on email evidence, that  former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s views played a role in the  decision-making.

None of the four State Department employees who were disciplined after the  ARB was released in December, and later re-instated by Secretary of State John  Kerry in August, were responsible for making policy. The draft states that  the use of administrative leave was meant to leave the impression of  accountability.

A  review of congressional testimony and internal State Department memos by Fox  News in June found that the policy decision to maintain a presence in Benghazi  with substandard security was made at the most senior levels of the State  Department by officials who have so far escaped blame — including Feltman,  Kennedy and Clinton.

The draft interim report, which was produced by the Republican majority,  states clearly that Clinton wanted to extend the Benghazi operation. I  reported that several officials within the Near Eastern Affairs office recalled  Clinton’s desire to leave the operation in place once the primary diplomatic  facility in Tripoli was re-opened.

In the summer of 2012, as security conditions unraveled, with documented  attacks on western facilities, a State Department officer who served on the  Libya desk said Kennedy was asked about the mission’s future, and Kennedy said  he would first have to check with Clinton. Based on a conversation between  Ambassador Chris Stevens – who was later killed in the attack — and Clinton,  Stevens’ deputy Greg Hicks testified it was the former secretary of State’s  personal goal to have a permanent operation in Benghazi.

State Department Assistant Secretary of State Douglas Frantz said Sunday that  the ARB’s and State Department’s response to Benghazi has been “thorough and  transparent.”

“In fact, it set a new standard for transparency measured by tens of  thousands of pages of documents turned over to Congress, testimony in public and  closed hearings and a declassified report for the public,” he said. “To suggest  anything has been hidden or that accountability has been averted requires  willful ignorance of these facts.”

“Twisting the facts to advance a political agenda does a disservice to those  who lost their lives and those who have devoted the past year to understanding  what happened and implementing security procedures to make certain it does not  happen again,” Frantz added. “The ARB report did not find that any individual  willfully ignored his or her responsibilities or engaged in misconduct; it did  not find that anyone breached his or her duty so as to be subject to termination  or other discipline.  It did, however, identify leadership deficiencies on  the part of four employees”

Rep. Elijah Cummings, the committee’s top Democrat, in a written statement  called the report’s claims “unsubstantiated accusations.”

“This Republican report is not an official Committee report, but rather a  completely partisan staff report that the Chairman apparently did not want  Committee Members to see before he leaked it to the press. Rather than focusing  on the reforms recommended by the ARB, Republicans have politicized the  investigation by engaging in a systematic effort to launch unsubstantiated  accusations against the Pentagon, the State Department, the President, and now  the ARB itself,” he said.

But the draft report said that there were other problems with the internal  review.

As one example, the co-chairman of the ARB Ambassador Thomas Pickering told  investigators that his team had the authority to conduct depositions, and the  authority to issue subpoenas. But the Board never used these authorities,  instead relying heavily on group and individual interviews.

While the ARB placed blamed on the State Department Bureau of Near Eastern  Affairs for “systemic leadership and management deficiencies,” the NEA’s second  in command was only interviewed once, in a group setting.  Adm. Mike  Mullen, the other co-chairman of the ARB, was asked by congressional  investigators why the second in command was not more thoroughly questioned, and  according to the draft, Mullen said the official did not seem to bear  significant responsibility.

The draft interim report also concluded that the State Department’s  unwillingness to provide the working documents from the ARB made an independent  assessment by the congressional committee difficult. Rather than record or  transcribe interviews, the ARB relied on summaries. Mullen said he found  the summaries to be accurate.

As for an alleged conflict of interest, the interim draft states that  Kennedy, whom the interim report found to bear significant responsibility for  the Benghazi policy, oversaw the selection of the ARB staff.  Mullen  told investigators he considered the staff’s familiarity with the State  Department to be useful. But in at least one instance, Cheryl Mills, who  was Clinton’s chief of staff, was given advance warning that her questioning  before the ARB would be rough.

The interim report states that members of the House oversight committee, led  by Republican Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., will sharpen its focus on the senior  State Department officials who drove the policy decisions in Benghazi.

The failure to affix blame above the assistant secretary level could impact  future decisions on “expeditionary diplomacy” where diplomats are now operating  in areas they would have pulled out of a decade ago.  Critics have accused  the Obama administration of favoring a light footprint which does not reflect  the security conditions on the ground.

The draft interim findings will be released early next week. The House  oversight committee has hearings scheduled for Sept. 19.

Read more:  http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2013/09/16/state-departments-benghazi-review-let-senior-officials-off-hook-report-finds/#ixzz2fG0SuGEw

Read more:  http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2013/09/16/state-departments-benghazi-review-let-senior-officials-off-hook-report-finds/#ixzz2fG06Jr4Q

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Who are the Syrian Rebels? — 10,000 Jihadis including al-Qaeda Plus 30,000 to 35,000 Hardline Islamists Out of 100,000 Syrian Rebels — Videos

Posted on September 17, 2013. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Constitution, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Foreign Policy, government spending, history, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Rants, Raves, Strategy, Talk Radio, Unemployment, Video, War, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

Who are the Syrian Rebels, Really?

SYRIA Study Finds Almost Half Of All Rebels Are Extremist, McCain Says It’s Not True

 

Official says CIA-funded weapons have begun to reach Syrian rebels; rebels deny receipt

Crisis In Syria U S Arming Syria’s Rebels CIA Paid for Weapons,but not american made

Why did the US decide to ARM Syrian REBELS? Is this CRISIS turning into a Sunni-Shia CIVIL WAR?

Pentagon Weighs Type of Arms to Give Syrian Rebels

Benghazi – Syria – Sources Tell Fox News That CIA Will Run Arms Program To Syrian Rebels

50% of Syrian rebels are jihadis: Study shows nearly half anti-Assad forces are Islamist extremists

A new study conducted by defence consultancy IHS Jane’s suggests that nearly half of the rebel fighters in Syria are aligned with jihadists or hardline Islamist groups. The analysis claims that opposition forces battling against Bashar al-Assad’s regime now amount to some 100,000, and that they have assembled into as many as 1,000 bands over the course of Syria’s civil war, which is now into its second year.

Extremism Export: US admits arms sent to Syria find jihadists

Syria: nearly half rebel fighters are jihadists or hardline Islamists, says IHS Jane’s report

Nearly half the rebel fighters in Syria are now aligned to jihadist or hardline Islamist groups according to a new analysis of factions in the country’s civil war.

By , Defence Correspondent, and Ruth Sherlock in Beirut

Opposition forces battling Bashar al-Assad’s regime in Syria now number around 100,000 fighters, but after more than two years of fighting they are fragmented into as many as 1,000 bands.

The new study by IHS Jane’s, a defence consultancy, estimates there are around 10,000 jihadists – who would include foreign fighters – fighting for powerful factions linked to al-Qaeda..

Another 30,000 to 35,000 are hardline Islamists who share much of the outlook of the jihadists, but are focused purely on the Syrian war rather than a wider international struggle.

There are also at least a further 30,000 moderates belonging to groups that have an Islamic character, meaning only a small minority of the rebels are linked to secular or purely nationalist groups.

The stark assessment, to be published later this week, accords with the view of Western diplomats estimate that less than one third of the opposition forces are “palatable” to Britain, while American envoys put the figure even lower.

Fears that the rebellion against the Assad regime is being increasingly dominated by extremists has fuelled concerns in the West over supplying weaponry that will fall into hostile hands. These fears contributed to unease in the US and elsewhere over military intervention in Syria.

Charles Lister, author of the analysis, said: “The insurgency is now dominated by groups which have at least an Islamist viewpoint on the conflict. The idea that it is mostly secular groups leading the opposition is just not borne out.”

The study is based on intelligence estimates and interviews with activists and militants. The lengthy fighting has seen the emergence of hundreds of separate rebel bands, each operating in small pockets of the country, which are usually loyal to larger factions.

Two factions linked to al-Qaeda, Jabhat al-Nusra and the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) – also know as the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Shams (ISIS) – have come to dominate among the more extremist fighters, Mr Lister said. Their influence has risen significantly in the past year.

“Because of the Islamist make up of such a large proportion of the opposition, the fear is that if the West doesn’t play its cards right, it will end up pushing these people away from the people we are backing,” he said. “If the West looks as though it is not interested in removing Assad, moderate Islamists are also likely to be pushed further towards extremists.”

Though still a minority in number, ISIL has become more prominent in rebel-held parts of Syria in recent months. Members in northern Syria have sought to assert their dominance over the local population and over the more moderate rebel Free Syrian Army (FSA).

The aim of moderate rebel fighters is the overthrow of their country’s authoritarian dictator, but jihadist groups want to transform Syria into a hard-line Islamic state within a regional Islamic “caliphate”.

These competing visions have caused rancour which last week erupted into fighting between ISIL and two of the larger moderate rebel factions.

A statement posted online by Islamists announced the launch of an ISIL military offensive in the eastern district of Aleppo which it called “Cleansing Evil”. “We will target regime collaborators, shabiha [pro-Assad militias], and those who blatantly attacked the Islamic state,” it added, naming the Farouq and Nasr factions.

Al-Qaeda has assassinated several FSA rebel commanders in northern Latakia province in recent weeks, and locals say they fear this is part of a jihadist campaign to gain complete control of the territory.

As well as being better armed and tougher fighters, ISIL and Jabhat al-Nusra have taken control of much of the income-generating resources in the north of the country, including oil, gas and grain.

This has given them significant economic clout, allowing them to “win hearts and minds” by providing food for the local population in a way that other rebel groups cannot.

ISIS has also begun a programme of “indoctrination” of civilians in rebel-held areas, trying to educate Syria’s traditionally moderate Sunni Muslims into a more hard-line interpretation of Islam.

In early September, the group distributed black backpacks with the words “Islamic State of Iraq” stamped on them. They also now control schools in Aleppo where young boys are reportedly taught to sing jihadist anthems.

“It seems it is some sort of a long-term plan to brainwash the children and recruit potential fighters,” said Elie Wehbe, a Lebanese journalists who is conducting research into these activities.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/syria/10311007/Syria-nearly-half-rebel-fighters-are-jihadists-or-hardline-Islamists-says-IHS-Janes-report.html

Yes, we can: Obama waives anti-terrorism provisions to arm Syrian rebels

The Obama administration waived provisions of a federal law which ban the supply of weapons and money to terrorists. The move is opening doors to supplying Syrian opposition with protection from chemical weapons.

The Arms Export Control Act (AECA) allows the US president to waive provisions in Sections 40 and 40A, which forbid providing munitions, credit and licenses to countries supporting acts of terrorism. But those prohibitions can be waived “if the President determines that the transaction is essential to the national security interests of the United States.”

President Barrack Obama ordered such a waiver for supplying chemical weapons-related assistance to “select vetted members” of Syrian opposition forces, the administration announced on Monday.

The announcement came after a UN report, which confirmed that sarin gas was indeed used in Syria on August 21, but didn’t point to either the Syrian army or the rebel forces as the culprits.

US ambassador to the UN Samantha Power said she was convinced that details of the report “make clear that only the regime could have carried out this large-scale chemical weapons attack.” 

But Power’s counterpart from Russia Vitaly Churkin said the report has no “airtight proof or conclusions” pointing to the Assad government and that it allows “everyone to draw their own conclusions, hopefully professional and not affected by political pressure.”

The US plan to provide chemical weapons-related assistance to Syrian opposition was in the works before the August attack a senior administration official said as cited by NBC News. Under the AEC rules, it will take at least 15 days before any of the materials can be officially shipped to Syria.

he Syrian opposition groups are increasingly dominated by radical Islamists, many of them foreign fighters who, the UN says, are involved in numerous crimes committed in Syria. According to estimates of defense consultancy IHS Jane’s, more than a half of the forces fighting to topple President Bashar Assad government are jihadists. The US explicitly listed Al-Nusra Front, a powerful Al-Qaeda-linked part of the Syrian opposition, as a terrorist organization.

Still, US politicians believe national intelligence community can ensure that the military assistance goes to the right hands.

“Our intelligence agencies, I think, have a very good handle on who to support and who not to support,” Senator Bob Corker said on CBS on Sunday. “And there’s going to be mistakes. We understand some people are going to get arms that should not be getting arms. But we still should be doing everything we can to support the free Syrian opposition.”

The US, France and UK announced their intention to provide more help to the Syrian opposition after a Monday meeting of foreign ministers in Paris. US Secretary of State said the US pursuits a political solution of the Syrian crisis, which would deliver a future Syria without Bashar Assad.

The US in the past provided non-lethal aid to the Syrian opposition, like vehicles, night goggles and body armor. CIA also reportedly helped countries like Saudi Arabia and Qatar to smuggle weapons to the rebels.

Damascus denied any responsibility for the August sarin attack. But it agreed to dismantle its chemical weapons stockpile after a call from Russia. The move put on hold US plan to use military force against Syria in retaliation for the alleged use of chemical weapons.

http://rt.com/usa/obama-terrorist-arms-supply-966/

Extremists and Al-Qaeda carrying rebel fight in Syria – study

Almost half of the rebel forces fighting against the Syrian government are hardline Islamists or jihadists with Al-Qaeda links, according to a new study due to be published this week.

Split into around 1,000 fragmented cells, the Syrian opposition consists of at least 10,000 fighters who are jihadists with strong links to Al-Qaeda, while another 35,000 are hardline Islamists, according to analysis by defense consultancy IHS Jane’s.

The difference between jihadist and hardliners, the Telegraph reports is that the latter concentrates only on the Syria, while jihadist groups have a global outreach. A further 30,000 opposition fighters belong to more moderate groups that have an Islamic character. The study, based interviews with militants and on intelligence estimates, concludes that around 100,000 rebel fighters are involved with the opposition forces.

“The insurgency is now dominated by groups which have at least an Islamist viewpoint on the conflict,”
Charles Lister, author of the analysis told the Telegraph. “The idea that it is mostly secular groups leading the opposition is just not borne out.”

Al-Nusra Front and the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) are two dominant groups that have Al-Qaeda links and are gaining momentum on the ground.

“Because of the Islamist make up of such a large proportion of the opposition, the fear is that if the West doesn’t play its cards right, it will end up pushing these people away from the people we are backing,” Lister said. “If the West looks as though it is not interested in removing Assad, moderate Islamists are also likely to be pushed further towards extremists.”

The issue of Western support to the opposition has long raised questions over the fears arms might fall into terrorist hands.

As if trying to help the West separate hardcore militants from moderate opposition, Al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahri addressed his brothers on Sunday, calling on them to avoid allying with other rebel fighters backed by Gulf Arab states and the West.

“I warn my brothers and people in the Syria of unity and jihad against coming close to any of these groups,” Zawahri said.

Meanwhile, in the past two weeks the US has reportedly begun delivering arms to militants battling the Syrian government.

The CIA has been entrusted to monitor the delivery of arms to insure that it does not end up in the hands of Al-Qaeda associates.

The agency controls and tracks the delivery of reportedly light weapons and other munitions via countries bordering Syria, such as Turkey and Jordan.

The US State Department has its own separate program of delivering vehicles and other non-lethal gear, such as communication equipment, advanced combat medical kits and high-calorie food packets to the Syrian opposition forces using the same supply channels.

http://rt.com/news/jihadists-dominate-rebels-syria-898/

IHS Jane’s Report: Nearly Half Of Syrian Rebels Are Jihadis Or Hardline Islamists

Excerpted from THE TELEGRAPH: Opposition forces battling Bashar al-Assad’s regime in Syria now number around 100,000 fighters, but after more than two years of fighting they are fragmented into as many as 1,000 bands.

The new study by IHS Jane’s, a defence consultancy, estimates there are around 10,000 jihadists – who would include foreign fighters – fighting for powerful factions linked to al-Qaeda..

Another 30,000 to 35,000 are hardline Islamists who share much of the outlook of the jihadists, but are focused purely on the Syrian war rather than a wider international struggle.

There are also at least a further 30,000 moderates belonging to groups that have an Islamic character, meaning only a small minority of the rebels are linked to secular or purely nationalist groups.

The stark assessment, to be published later this week, accords with the view of Western diplomats estimate that less than one third of the opposition forces are “palatable” to Britain, while American envoys put the figure even lower. Fears that the rebellion against the Assad regime is being increasingly dominated by extremists has fuelled concerns in the West over supplying weaponry that will fall into hostile hands. These fears contributed to unease in the US and elsewhere over military intervention in Syria.

Charles Lister, author of the analysis, said: “The insurgency is now dominated by groups which have at least an Islamist viewpoint on the conflict. The idea that it is mostly secular groups leading the opposition is just not borne out.”

The study is based on intelligence estimates and interviews with activists and militants. The lengthy fighting has seen the emergence of hundreds of separate rebel bands, each operating in small pockets of the country, which are usually loyal to larger factions. Two factions linked to al-Qaeda, Jabhat al-Nusra and the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) – also know as the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Shams (ISIS) – have come to dominate among the more extremist fighters, Mr Lister said. Their influence has risen significantly in the past year.

“Because of the Islamist make up of such a large proportion of the opposition, the fear is that if the West doesn’t play its cards right, it will end up pushing these people away from the people we are backing,” he said. “If the West looks as though it is not interested in removing Assad, moderate Islamists are also likely to be pushed further towards extremists.”

Though still a minority in number, ISIL has become more prominent in rebel-held parts of Syria in recent months. Members in northern Syria have sought to assert their dominance over the local population and over the more moderate rebel Free Syrian Army (FSA).

The aim of moderate rebel fighters is the overthrow of their country’s authoritarian dictator, but jihadist groups want to transform Syria into a hard-line Islamic state within a regional Islamic “caliphate”.

These competing visions have caused rancour which last week erupted into fighting between ISIL and two of the larger moderate rebel factions.

A statement posted online by Islamists announced the launch of an ISIL military offensive in the eastern district of Aleppo which it called “Cleansing Evil”. “We will target regime collaborators, shabiha [pro-Assad militias], and those who blatantly attacked the Islamic state,” it added, naming the Farouq and Nasr factions.

Al-Qaeda has assassinated several FSA rebel commanders in northern Latakia province in recent weeks, and locals say they fear this is part of a jihadist campaign to gain complete control of the territory.

As well as being better armed and tougher fighters, ISIL and Jabhat al-Nusra have taken control of much of the income-generating resources in the north of the country, including oil, gas and grain.

This has given them significant economic clout, allowing them to “win hearts and minds” by providing food for the local population in a way that other rebel groups cannot.

ISIS has also begun a programme of “indoctrination” of civilians in rebel-held areas, trying to educate Syria’s traditionally moderate Sunni Muslims into a more hard-line interpretation of Islam.

In early September, the group distributed black backpacks with the words “Islamic State of Iraq” stamped on them. They also now control schools in Aleppo where young boys are reportedly taught to sing jihadist anthems.

“It seems it is some sort of a long-term plan to brainwash the children and recruit potential fighters,” said Elie Wehbe, a Lebanese journalists who is conducting research into these activities.

http://patdollard.com/2013/09/ihs-janes-report-nearly-half-of-syrian-rebels-are-jihadis-or-hardline-islamists/

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US Naval Base Shooting with 12 Dead Plus Shooter — Killer Mentally Ill Navy Veteran Discharged For Misconduct Had Anger Issues Was Video Game Addict– No Kidding — Videos

Posted on September 17, 2013. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, College, Communications, Crime, Culture, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Games, history, Homicide, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Video, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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ABC World News Now : Aaron Alexis: The Man Behind the Washington Navy Yard Shooting

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Breaking: Navy Yard Shooter Identified As Aaron Alexis, 34 from Texas

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Shooting at washington navy yard – Active shooter Several people wonded inside US navy yard 9/16/13

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Washington Navy Yard Shooting Rampage Witness

Eyewitness sees man named Aaron Alexis as navy yard gunman, shot next to him

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Navy Yard Shooting Update: Gunman Identified as Aaron Alexis

Revealed: Washington gunman who murdered 12 had ‘anger issues’ after rescuing victims of 9/11 and had been kicked out of the Navy after gun charge

  • Aaron Alexis, 34, named as the heavily armed gunman who opened fire at the Washington Navy Yard in Washington D.C. – killing 12 people and injuring eight others on Monday morning
  • Used an AR-15 rifle the same weapon used in the Sandy Hook and Aurora mass shootings
  • SWAT Teams fought a heavy gun battle with him and shot him dead
  • Alexis served in the U.S. Navy for almost four years before he was discharged in 2011 for ‘misconduct’
  • It has been reported he was discharged from the U.S. Navy because of an arrest for firing his own gun in 2010; a similar incident occurred in 2004
  • The FBI has determined that Alexis was the only shooter, and police say a valid security pass was used to get into the Navy Yard buildings

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2421980/Washington-Naval-Yard-shooting-Aaron-Alexis-named-gunman-murdered-12-injured-15.html#ixzz2f9mEJn9n
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Gunman in Navy Yard rampage was hearing voices

By ERIC TUCKER, BRETT ZONGKER and LOLITA C. BALDOR, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — The former Navy reservist who slaughtered 12 people at the Washington Navy Yard had been hearing voices and was being treated for mental problems in the weeks before the shooting rampage, but was not stripped of his security clearance, officials said Tuesday.

Aaron Alexis, a 34-year-old information technology employee with a defense contractor, used a valid pass to get into the highly secured installation Monday morning and started firing inside a building, the FBI said. He was killed in a gun battle with police.

The motive for the mass shooting — the deadliest on a military installation in the U.S. since the attack at Fort Hood, Texas, in 2009 — was a mystery, investigators said.

U.S. law enforcement officials told The Associated Press that there was no known connection to international or domestic terrorism and that investigators have found no manifesto or other writings suggesting a political or religious motivation.

Alexis had been suffering a host of serious mental problems, including paranoia and a sleep disorder, and had been hearing voices in his head, according to the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the criminal investigation was still going on.

He had been treated since August by Veterans Affairs for his mental problems, the officials said.

The Navy had not declared him mentally unfit, which would have rescinded a security clearance Alexis had from his earlier time in the Navy Reserves.

The assault is likely to raise more questions about the adequacy of the background checks done on contract employees and others who are issued security clearances — an issue that came up most recently with National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden, an IT employee with a government contractor.

In the hours after the Navy Yard attack, a profile of Alexis began coming into focus.

A Buddhist convert who had also had flare-ups of rage, Alexis, a black man who grew up in New York City and whose last known address was in Fort Worth, Texas, complained about the Navy and being a victim of discrimination. He also had two run-ins with the law over shootings in 2004 and 2010 in Texas and Seattle.

In addition to those killed at the Navy Yard attack, eight people were hurt, including three who were shot and wounded, authorities. Those three were a police officer and two female civilians, authorities said. They were all expected to survive.

Monday’s onslaught at a single building at the Navy Yard unfolded about 8:20 a.m. in the heart of the nation’s capital, less than four miles from the White House and two miles from the Capitol. It put all of Washington on edge.

“This is a horrific tragedy,” Mayor Vincent Gray said.

Alexis carried three weapons: an AR-15 assault rifle, a shotgun, and a handgun that he took from a police officer at the scene, according to two federal law enforcement officials who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the investigation.

The AR-15 is the same type of rifle used in last year’s mass shooting at a Newtown, Conn., elementary school that killed 20 students and six women. The weapon was also used in the shooting at a Colorado movie theater that killed 12 and wounded 70.

For much of the day Monday, authorities said they were looking for a possible second attacker who may have been disguised in an olive-drab military-style uniform. But by late Monday night, they said they were convinced the shooting was the work of a lone gunman, and the lockdown around the area was eased.

“We do now feel comfortable that we have the single and sole person responsible for the loss of life inside the base today,” Washington Police Chief Cathy Lanier said.

President Barack Obama lamented yet another mass shooting in the U.S. that he said took the lives of American “patriots.” He promised to make sure “whoever carried out this cowardly act is held responsible.”

The FBI took charge of the investigation.

The attack came four years after Army psychiatrist Maj. Nidal Hasan killed 13 people at Fort Hood in what he said was an effort to save the lives of Muslims overseas. He was convicted last month and sentenced to death.

The dead in the Navy Yard attack ranged in age from 46 to 73, according to the mayor. A number of the victims were civilian employees and contractors, rather than active-duty military personnel, the police chief said.

At the time of the rampage, Alexis was an employee with The Experts, a company that was a Defense Department subcontractor on a Navy-Marine Corps computer project, authorities said.

Valerie Parlave, head of the FBI’s field office in Washington, said Alexis had access to the Navy Yard as a defense contractor and used a valid pass.

Alexis had been a full-time Navy reservist from 2007 to early 2011, leaving as a petty officer third class, the Navy said. It did not say why he left. He had been an aviation electrician’s mate with a unit in Fort Worth.

The Washington Navy Yard is a sprawling, 41-acre labyrinth of buildings and streets protected by armed guards and metal detectors, and employees have to show their IDs at doors and gates. More than 18,000 people work there.

The rampage took place at Building 197, the headquarters for Naval Sea Systems Command, which buys, builds and maintains ships and submarines. About 3,000 people work at headquarters, many of them civilians.

Witnesses on Monday described a gunman opening fire from a fourth-floor overlook, aiming down on people on the main floor, which includes a glass-walled cafeteria. Others said a gunman fired at them in a third-floor hallway.

Patricia Ward, a logistics-management specialist, said she was in the cafeteria getting breakfast.

“It was three gunshots straight in a row — pop, pop, pop. Three seconds later, it was pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, so it was like about a total of seven gunshots, and we just started running,” Ward said.

___

Associated Press writers Matt Apuzzo, Adam Goldman, Jesse Holland, Stacy A. Anderson, Brian Witte and Ben Nuckols in Washington contributed to this report.

http://www.stamfordadvocate.com/news/texas/article/Gunman-Navy-Yard-rampage-had-mental-problems-4820027.php

Officials: Gunman treated for mental health issues

By MATT APUZZO and ADAM GOLDMAN

U.S. law enforcement officials are telling The Associated Press that the Navy contractor identified as the gunman in the mass shootings at the Washington Navy Yard had been suffering a host of serious mental issues, including paranoia and a sleep disorder. He also had been hearing voices in his head, the officials said.

Aaron Alexis, 34, had been treated since August by the Veterans Administration for his mental problems, the officials said. They spoke on condition of anonymity because the criminal investigation in the case was continuing. The Navy had not declared him mentally unfit, which would have rescinded a security clearance that Alexis had from his earlier time in the Navy Reserves.

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_NAVY_YARD_SHOOTING_GUNMAN_MENTAL_HEALTH?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2013-09-17-08-03-32

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Former Communist KGB Lt. Colonel Putin Pleas for International Collectivism Not American Individual Exceptionalism — Obama Agrees! — Videos

Posted on September 12, 2013. Filed under: Agriculture, American History, Blogroll, College, Communications, Constitution, Economics, Education, Employment, Energy, European History, Farming, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, Food, Foreign Policy, Genocide, government, government spending, history, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Literacy, Natural Gas, Nuclear Power, Oil, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Press, Rants, Raves, Regulations, Religion, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Collectivism

Collectivism

Collectivist in Chief

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To achieve world government it is necessary to remove from the minds of men their individualism loyalty to family traditions national patriotism and religious dogmas

Individualism

Milton Friedman – Collectivism

Collectivism and Individualism – Edward Griffin

What We Believe, Part 7: American Exceptionalism

Individualism vs. Collectivism

G. Edward Griffin – The Collectivist Conspiracy

President Collectivist: Will Obama’s Statist, Class Warfare Mantra Resonate with Voters?

Newsmax Now (09/12/13)

Understanding Putin’s “remarkable” editorial

‘Plea for Caution’: Putin warns against diminishing intl law

Edward Griffin : United Nations One World Government? Collectivism (Control) Dec 2012

The UNITED NATIONS exposed by G Edward Griffin

G. Edward Griffin in Toronto: The New World Order and the UN – 11.16.2012

Background Articles and Videos

What We Believe, Part 1: Small Government and Free Enterprise

What We Believe, Part 2: The Problem with Elitism

What We Believe, Part 3: Wealth Creation

What We Believe, Part 4: Natural Law

What We Believe, Part 5: Gun Rights

What We Believe, Part 6: Immigration

What We Believe, Part 7: American Exceptionalism

Why Obama Is Snubbing Putin | WSJ Opinion

A Plea for Caution From Russia

What Putin Has to Say to Americans About Syria

By VLADIMIR V. PUTIN

MOSCOW — RECENT events surrounding Syria have prompted me to speak directly to the American people and their political leaders. It is important to do so at a time of insufficient communication between our societies.

Relations between us have passed through different stages. We stood against each other during the cold war. But we were also allies once, and defeated the Nazis together. The universal international organization — the United Nations — was then established to prevent such devastation from ever happening again.

The United Nations’ founders understood that decisions affecting war and peace should happen only by consensus, and with America’s consent the veto by Security Council permanent members was enshrined in the United Nations Charter. The profound wisdom of this has underpinned the stability of international relations for decades.

No one wants the United Nations to suffer the fate of the League of Nations, which collapsed because it lacked real leverage. This is possible if influential countries bypass the United Nations and take military action without Security Council authorization.

The potential strike by the United States against Syria, despite strong opposition from many countries and major political and religious leaders, including the pope, will result in more innocent victims and escalation, potentially spreading the conflict far beyond Syria’s borders. A strike would increase violence and unleash a new wave of terrorism. It could undermine multilateral efforts to resolve the Iranian nuclear problem and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and further destabilize the Middle East and North Africa. It could throw the entire system of international law and order out of balance.

Syria is not witnessing a battle for democracy, but an armed conflict between government and opposition in a multireligious country. There are few champions of democracy in Syria. But there are more than enough Qaeda fighters and extremists of all stripes battling the government. The United States State Department has designated Al Nusra Front and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, fighting with the opposition, as terrorist organizations. This internal conflict, fueled by foreign weapons supplied to the opposition, is one of the bloodiest in the world.

Mercenaries from Arab countries fighting there, and hundreds of militants from Western countries and even Russia, are an issue of our deep concern. Might they not return to our countries with experience acquired in Syria? After all, after fighting in Libya, extremists moved on to Mali. This threatens us all.

From the outset, Russia has advocated peaceful dialogue enabling Syrians to develop a compromise plan for their own future. We are not protecting the Syrian government, but international law. We need to use the United Nations Security Council and believe that preserving law and order in today’s complex and turbulent world is one of the few ways to keep international relations from sliding into chaos. The law is still the law, and we must follow it whether we like it or not. Under current international law, force is permitted only in self-defense or by the decision of the Security Council. Anything else is unacceptable under the United Nations Charter and would constitute an act of aggression.

No one doubts that poison gas was used in Syria. But there is every reason to believe it was used not by the Syrian Army, but by opposition forces, to provoke intervention by their powerful foreign patrons, who would be siding with the fundamentalists. Reports that militants are preparing another attack — this time against Israel — cannot be ignored.

It is alarming that military intervention in internal conflicts in foreign countries has become commonplace for the United States. Is it in America’s long-term interest? I doubt it. Millions around the world increasingly see America not as a model of democracy but as relying solely on brute force, cobbling coalitions together under the slogan “you’re either with us or against us.”

But force has proved ineffective and pointless. Afghanistan is reeling, and no one can say what will happen after international forces withdraw. Libya is divided into tribes and clans. In Iraq the civil war continues, with dozens killed each day. In the United States, many draw an analogy between Iraq and Syria, and ask why their government would want to repeat recent mistakes.

No matter how targeted the strikes or how sophisticated the weapons, civilian casualties are inevitable, including the elderly and children, whom the strikes are meant to protect.

The world reacts by asking: if you cannot count on international law, then you must find other ways to ensure your security. Thus a growing number of countries seek to acquire weapons of mass destruction. This is logical: if you have the bomb, no one will touch you. We are left with talk of the need to strengthen nonproliferation, when in reality this is being eroded.

We must stop using the language of force and return to the path of civilized diplomatic and political settlement.

A new opportunity to avoid military action has emerged in the past few days. The United States, Russia and all members of the international community must take advantage of the Syrian government’s willingness to place its chemical arsenal under international control for subsequent destruction. Judging by the statements of President Obama, the United States sees this as an alternative to military action.

I welcome the president’s interest in continuing the dialogue with Russia on Syria. We must work together to keep this hope alive, as we agreed to at the Group of 8 meeting in Lough Erne in Northern Ireland in June, and steer the discussion back toward negotiations.

If we can avoid force against Syria, this will improve the atmosphere in international affairs and strengthen mutual trust. It will be our shared success and open the door to cooperation on other critical issues.

My working and personal relationship with President Obama is marked by growing trust. I appreciate this. I carefully studied his address to the nation on Tuesday. And I would rather disagree with a case he made on American exceptionalism, stating that the United States’ policy is “what makes America different. It’s what makes us exceptional.” It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation. There are big countries and small countries, rich and poor, those with long democratic traditions and those still finding their way to democracy. Their policies differ, too. We are all different, but when we ask for the Lord’s blessings, we must not forget that God created us equal.

Vladimir V. Putin is the president of Russia.

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Benghazi One Year Later — The White House and CIA Stonewalling and Coverup Continues — No Arrests or Justice For The Victims — Who Ordered The Stand Down of Military and CIA Operators — Obama or Jarrett or Both? — Videos

Posted on September 11, 2013. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Communications, Constitution, Crime, Economics, European History, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, history, Islam, Islam, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Literacy, media, People, Philosophy, Photos, Pistols, Politics, Psychology, Rants, Religion, Resources, Reviews, Rifles, Security, Shite, Strategy, Sunni, Talk Radio, Tax Policy, Terrorism, Video, War, Weapons, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Weather, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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Benghazi Terrorist Suspects Identified But No Arrests Made RPT America Needs Answers Cavuto

Benghazi Scandal, Chris Wallace To WH Chief Of Staff Where Are Benghazi Arrest Powers & Sayegh

Benghazi One Year Later

Congressman: Benghazi Survivors Forced to Sign Non-Disclosure Agreements

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Benghazi 1 YR Later Top Diplomat Says State Dept Failed To Send Help!

Judge Jeanine Pirro – Benghazi Terror Attack One Year Later And Still No Answers

One Year Since Benghazi And Still No Arrests – Fox News Sunday Panel – Chris Wallace – 9-8-13

CNN’s Burnett on Benghazi: “One Year Later, Justice Has Not Been Served…May Never Be Served”

Illegal Cover-up: Obama Changing Names Of Benghazi Survivors

Benghazi Assassination Coverup and Lies Being Exposed – Demand Impeachment/Resignation

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Breaking News Bombshell: President Obama’s Phony Scandal and Big Lies of Benghazi Terror Attack Goes Viral As CIA Had 35 operators Assisting In Transfer from Libya of 20,000 Soviet Grinch SA-24 (Igla-S man-portable air defense system (MANPADS) ) shoulder-launched Surface-to-Air Missiles ( equivalent of U.S.-made Stinger missiles) To Syria — CIA Monthly Polygraphying of CIA Employees To Stop Leaks To Media — Videos

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Obama’s CIA Covert Action Operations Provides Arms and Death Squads From Benghazi, Libya to Syria — Graphic Video of Executions — The Consequences of Obama’s Responsibility To Protect Foreign Policy — Sharia Law At Work — World War III? — Video

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Competiting Pipelines for Gas and Oil In the Middle East The Real Reason for Intervening in Syria? — Videos — Videos

Posted on September 10, 2013. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Coptic Christian, Demographics, Economics, Education, Energy, European History, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, Genocide, government spending, history, Islam, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Literacy, Macroeconomics, media, Microeconomics, Natural Gas, Oil, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Press, Raves, Shite, Sunni, Tax Policy, Video, War, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

 

Oil Pipelines in The Middle East: Special Report

Syria Attack Was Planned Before Gas Attacks

Syria what is really going on and why

“MOUNTING WESTERN PRESSURE”

AGAINST THE ARAB GAS PIPELINE!

SYRIA: Saudi Prince Bandar Behind Chemical Attacks

Pipeline Politics and the Syrian War – Pepe Escobar on GRTV

By Jerry Robinson

In the summer of 2011, just weeks after civil war broke out in Syria, the Tehran Times released a report entitled, Iran, Iraq, Syria Sign Major Gas Pipeline Deal. The report provided details on how Iran planned to export its vast natural gas reserves to Europe through a pipeline that traversed both Iraq and Syria. This Iran-Iraq-Syria pipeline would be the largest gas pipeline in the Middle East and would span from Iran’s gas-rich South Pars field to the Mediterranean coastline in Lebanon, via Iraq and Syria.

[…]

Syria’s strategic location, and its warm water port on the Mediterranean, have placed it near the center of a major effort by Western nations to pump cheap Middle East gas supplies to Europe and beyond.

[…]

Syrian President Assad has since rejected the Arab Gas Pipeline and has instead begun working closely with Iran on Iran’s proposed gas pipeline, dubbed the Islamic Pipeline. This proposed pipeline would obviously compete directly with the Arab Gas Pipeline and its goal of delivering Mideast natural gas to Europe.

[…]

But what about Russia? Why are they choosing to side with Syria despite the massive propaganda push by the West? Russia’s economy is predominantly based upon its enormous energy supplies. Much of Europe is dependent upon Russian oil and gas, and this dependency is growing. Russia has the world’s largest reserves of natural gas. Which country has the second largest reserves? Iran.

Iran, however, is isolated with no current ability to export its vast energy supplies to Europe. Russia has its eye on the potential profits of bringing Iranian oil and gas online for Europe. For this reason, (among a myriad of others) it has sought to solidify its relations with Iran. Of course, the most direct route for moving Iran’s energy supplies to Europe is right through the heart of Iraq and into Syria. So, it appears that Russia’s alliance with Syria has less to do with Syria and much more to do with the Iranian gas that may soon flow into Syria.

In the end, these conflicts in the Middle East are all about controlling the flow of energy resources.

Read more:  Why Syria? A Story Of Competing Pipelines

 

http://consciouslifenews.com/syria-story-competing-pipelines/1164623/

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Russia’s Main Concern in Syria — Tartus Naval Base

Posted on September 10, 2013. Filed under: American History, Ammunition, Blogroll, Communications, Constitution, Crime, Economics, European History, Federal Government, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, history, Investments, Islam, Islam, Law, liberty, Life, Links, People, Philosophy, Photos, Pistols, Politics, Rants, Raves, Regulations, Religion, Rifles, Talk Radio, Terrorism, Transportation, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , |

 

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Russia sends Warships to Syria WW3 looming Syria Russia Ships ‘Bound For Mediterranean’

 

September 2013 Russia said very concerned USA may respond militarily

 

Russia Builds Up Naval Presence Off Syria

Russia expands its naval presence near a key base in Syria in a build-up that U.S. and European officials say appears aimed at deterring intervention in the country’s increasingly bloody civil war.

 

Russia concerned over naval bases in Syria

Russia to Sell Fighter Jets to Syria’s Assad

World War 3 – Russia (Evacuates Syria) USA – Israel (Golan) Syria – Update – War Alert – WW3

Be Careful: Russia is Back to Stay in the Middle East – Guest Post

Be Careful: Russia is Back to Stay in the Middle East

Russia is back. President Vladimir Putin wants the world to acknowledge that Russia remains a global power. He is making his stand in Syria.

The Soviet Union acquired the Tardus Naval Port in Syria in 1971 without any real purpose for it. With their ships welcomed in Algeria, Cuba or Vietnam, Tardus was too insignificant to be developed. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russia lacked the funds to spend on the base and no reason to invest in it.

The Russian return to the Middle East brought them first to where the Soviet Union had its closest ties. Libya had been a major buyer of arms and many of the military officers had studied in the Soviet Union. Russia was no longer a global power, but it could be used by the Libyans as a counter force to block domination by the United States and Europeans.

When Gaddafi fell, Tardus became Russia’s only presence in the region. That and the discovery of vast gas deposits just offshore have transformed the once insignificant port into a strategic necessity.

Earlier at the United Nations, Russia had failed to realize that Security Council Resolution 1973 that was to implement a new policy of “responsibility to protect” cloaked a hidden agenda. It was to be turned from a no-fly zone into a free-fire zone for NATO. That strategic blunder of not vetoing the resolution led to the destruction of Gaddafi’s regime and cost Russia construction contracts and its investments in Libyan gas and oil to the tune of 10 billion dollars.

That was one more in a series of humiliating defeats; and something that Putin will not allow to happen again while he is president. Since his time as an officer in the KGB, he has seen the Soviet Empire lose half of its population, a quarter of its land mass, and most of its global influence. He has described the collapse of the Soviet Union as a “geopolitical catastrophe.”

In spite of all of the pressure from Washington and elsewhere to have him persuade Bashar Al-Assad to relinquish power, Putin is staying loyal to the isolated regime. He is calculating that Russia can afford to lose among the Arabs what little prestige that it has remaining and gain a major political and economic advantage in Southern Europe and in the Eastern Mediterranean.

What Russia lost through the anti-Al-Assad alliance was the possibility to control the natural gas market across Europe and the means to shape events on the continent. In July 2011, Iran, Iraq, and Syria agreed to build a gas pipeline from the South Pars gas field in Iran to Lebanon and across the Mediterranean to Europe. The pipeline that would have been managed by Gazprom would have carried 110 million cubic meters of gas. About a quarter of the gas would be consumed by the transit countries, leaving seventy or so million cubic meters to be sold to Europe.

Violence in Iraq and the Syrian civil war has ended any hope that the pipeline will be built, but not all hope is lost. One possibility is for Al-Assad to withdraw to the traditional Aliwite coastal enclave to begin the partitioning of Syria into three or more separate zones, Aliwite, Kurdish, and Sunni. Al-Assad’s grandfather in 1936 had asked the French administrators of the Syrian mandate to create a separate Aliwite territory in order to avoid just this type of ethnic violence.

What the French would not do circumstance may force the grandson to accept as his only choice to survive. His one hundred thousand heavily armed troops would be able to defend the enclave.

The four or five million Aliwites, Christians, and Druze would have agricultural land, water, a deep water port and an international airport. Very importantly, they would have the still undeveloped natural gas offshore fields that extend from Israel, Lebanon, and Cyprus. The Aliwite Republic could be energy self-sufficient and even an exporter. Of course, Russia’s Gazprom in which Putin has a vital interest would get a privileged position in the development of the resource.

In an last effort to bring the nearly two year long civil war to an end, Russia’s foreign minister Sergei Lavrov urged Syrian president Bashar al-Assad at the end of December to start talks with the Syrian opposition in line with the agreements for a cease fire that was reached in Geneva on 30 June. The Russians have also extended the invitation to the Syrian opposition National Coalition head, Ahmed Moaz al-Khatib. The National Coalition refuses to negotiate with Al-Assad and Al-Assad will not relinquish power voluntarily.

The hardened positions of both sides leaves little hope for a negotiated settlement; and foreign minister Sergei Lavrov has made it clear that only by an agreement among the Syrians will Russia accept the removal of Al-Assad. Neither do they see a settlement through a battlefield victory which leaves only a partitioning that will allow the civil war to just wind down as all sides are exhausted.

The Russians are troubled by what they see as a growing trend among the Western Powers to remove disapproved administrations in other sovereign countries and a program to isolate Russia. They saw the U.S involvement in the Ukraine and Georgia. There was the separation of Kosovo from Serbia over Russian objections. There was the extending of NATO to the Baltic States after pledging not to expand the organization to Russia’s frontier.

Again, Russia is seeing Washington’s hand in Syria in the conflict with Iran. The United States is directing military operations in Syria with Turkey, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia at a control center in Adana about 60 miles from the Syrian border, which is also home to the American air base in Incirlik. The Program by President Obama to have the CIA acquire heavy weapons at a facility in Benghazi to be sent to Turkey and onward to Syria is the newest challenge that Putin cannot allow to go unanswered. It was the involvement of Ambassador Chris Stevens in the arms trade that may have contributed to his murder; and the Russians are not hesitating to remind the United States and Europeans that their dealings with the various Moslem extremists is a very dangerous game.

The Russians are backing their determination to block another regime change by positioning and manning an advanced air defense system in what is becoming the Middle East casino. Putin is betting that NATO will not risk in Syria the cost that an air operation similar to what was employed over Libya will impose. Just in case Russia’s determination is disregarded and Putin’s bluff is called, Surface to surface Iskander missiles have been positioned along the Jordanian and Turkish frontiers. They are aimed at a base in Jordan operated by the United States to train rebels and at Patriot Missile sites and other military facilities in Turkey.

Putin is certain that he is holding the winning hand in this very high stakes poker game. An offshore naval task force, the presence of Russian air defense forces, an electronic intelligence center in latakia, and the port facilities at Tardus will guarantee the independence of the enclave. As the supplier of sixty percent of Turkey’s natural gas, Moscow does have leverage that Ankara will not be able to ignore; and Ankara well knows that gas is one of Putin’s diplomatic weapons.

When the Turks and U.S see that there is little chance of removing Al-Assad, they will have no option other than to negotiate a settlement with him; and that would involve Russia as the protector and the mediator. That would establish Russia’s revived standing as a Mediterranean power; and Putin could declare confidently that “Russia is back.” After that, the Russians will be free to focus upon their real interests in the region.

And what is Russia’s real interest? Of course, it is oil and gas and the power that control of them can bring.

Source: http://oilprice.com/Geopolitics/International/Be-Careful-Russia-is-Back-to-Stay-in-the-Middle-East.html

 

Tartus

Tartus is the second largest port city on the Syrian coast (after Latakia) and the largest city in Tartus Governorate with an estimated population of 118,000 inhabitants as of 2004.[1] The majority of the population is ethnic Levantine Arab. However, there are about 3,000 people of Greek origin who reside mainly in the town of Al Hamidiyah just south of Tartus.[2] Since the start of the Iraqi War, a few thousands Iraqi nationals now reside in Tartus.

tartus The History of Tartus goes back to the 2nd millennium BC when it was founded as a Phoenician colony of Aradus.[5] The colony was known as Antaradus (from Greek Anti-Arados → Antarados , Anti-Aradus, meaning The town facing Arwad ). Not much remains of the Phoenician Antaradus, the mainland settlement that was linked to the more important and larger settlements of Aradus, off the shore of Tartus, and the nearby site of Amrit.[6]

tartus On September 22, 2008, Russian Navy spokesman Igor Dygalo said the nuclear-powered battlecruiser Peter The Great, accompanied by three other ships, sailed from the Northern Fleet’s base of Severomorsk. The ships will cover about 15,000n nautical miles (28,000 km) to conduct joint maneuvers with the Venezuelan navy. Dygalo refused to comment on Monday’s report in the daily Izvestia claiming that the ships were to make a stopover in the Syrian port of Tartus on their way to Venezuela. Russian officials said the Soviet-era base there was being renovated to serve as a foothold for a permanent Russian navy presence in the Mediterranean.[14]

tartus The historic centre of Tartus consists of more recent buildings built on and inside the walls of the Crusader-era Templar fortress, whose moat still separates this old town from the modern city on its northern and eastern sides. Outside the fortress few historic remains can be seen, with the exception of the former cathedral of Notre-Dame of Tartus (Our Lady of Tortosa), from the 12th century. The church is now the site of a museum. Former President Hafez Assad and his predominantly Islamic administration had promised to return the site to the Christians as a symbol of deep Christianity in Syria, however he died before this promise was executed. Assad’s son, President Bashar Assad, has claimed to honor his father’s promise.

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David Boaz of CATO Institute: Americans Won’t Tolerate a War with Syria — Videos

Posted on September 8, 2013. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Constitution, Crime, Demographics, Economics, Education, Energy, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, Genocide, government, government spending, history, Inflation, Investments, Islam, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Narcissism, Natural Gas, Nuclear Power, Oil, People, Philosophy, Politics, Press, Psychology, Rants, Raves, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , |

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David Boaz: Americans Won’t Tolerate a War with Syria

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The Truth About War With Syria — Videos

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The Truth About War With Syria

The Truth About How The US Will Save Syria

There Will Be No Economic Recovery. Prepare Yourself Accordingly.

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Bye Bye Birdie HONESTLY SINCERE 1963 Jesse Pearson Ann Margret

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[youtubehttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fAIoUREM2X8]

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Obama’s Syria War Is Really About Iran and Israel

Bob Dreyfuss

The dirty little not-so-secret behind President Obama’s much-lobbied-for, illegal and strategically incompetent war against Syria is that it’s not about Syria at all. It’s about Iran—and Israel. And it has been from the start.

By “the start,” I mean 2011, when the Obama administration gradually became convinced that it could deal Iran a mortal blow by toppling President Bashar al-Assad of Syria, a secular, Baathist strongman who is, despite all, an ally of Iran’s. Since then, taking Iran down a peg has been the driving force behind Obama’s Syria policy.

Not coincidentally, the White House plans to scare members of Congress into supporting the ill-conceived war plan by waving the Iranian flag in their faces. Even liberal Democrats, some of whom are opposing or questioning war with Syria, blanch at the prospect of opposing Obama and the Israel lobby over Iran.

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Item for consideration: a new column by the Syria analyst at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, the chief think tank of the Israel lobby. Andrew Tabler headlines his piece: “Attacking Syria Is the Best Way to Deal with Iran.” In it, he says:

At first glance, the festering Syria crisis seems bad news for diplomatic efforts to keep Iran from developing nuclear capabilities. In actuality, however, achieving U.S. objectives in the Syria crisis is an opportunity to pressure Iran into making hard choices not only in Syria, but regarding its nuclear program as well. More U.S. involvement to achieve its objectives in Syria will inevitably run counter to Tehran’s interests, be it to punish the Assad regime for chemical weapons use or to show support for the Syrian opposition in changing Assad’s calculus and forcing him to “step aside” at the negotiating table or on the battlefield.

Many in U.S. policymaking circles have viewed containing swelling Iranian influence in Syria and preventing Iran from going nuclear as two distinct policy discussions, as the Obama Administration only has so much “bandwidth” to deal with Middle East threats. But the recent deepening of cooperation between Tehran, Hezbollah and the Assad regime, combined with their public acknowledgement of these activities, indicates that they themselves see these activities as furthering the efficacy of the “resistance axis.”

Like every alliance, its members will only make hard policy choices if the costs of its current policies far outweigh the benefits. U.S. strikes on the Assad regime, if properly calibrated as part of an overall plan to degrade the regime, would force Tehran to become more involved in Syria in order to rescue its stalwart ally. This would be costly for Iran financially, militarily and politically. Those costs would make the Iranian regime and its people reassess aspirations to go nuclear.

Needless to say, such a strategy is bound to be counterproductive, since—by slamming Syria, never mind toppling Assad—Washington is likely to undermine doves and bolster hawks in Tehran and undermine the chances for successful negotiations with Iran’s new president, Hassan Rouhani, who’ll be speaking at the UN General Assembly later this month.

In fact, both Russia and Iran have signaled recently, in the wake of Syria’s obvious deployment and use of sarin gas and other deadly weapons that they might be getting ready to join the rest of the world in condemning Syria’s chemical warfare, and that makes it far more likely that the much-postponed US-Russia “Geneva II” peace conference on Syria might work. The hawkish Washington Post today notes Rouhani’s new administration in Tehran is softening its tone on Syria, and it reports that the new Iranian foreign minister, Javad Zarif, has acknowledged the Syria has erred, saying: “We believe that the government in Syria has made grave mistakes that have, unfortunately, paved the way for the situation in the country to be abused.”

Meanwhile, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, while issuing scathing denunciations of the coming U.S. attack on Syria, has dropped broad hints that he might be willing to join with other nations if and when the United Nations weapons team concludes that Assad used nerve gas, suggesting that Russia might not block a UN Security Council resolution against Syria. In his much-reported interview with the Associated Press, Putin insisted on waiting for the UN report:

“If there is evidence that chemical weapons have been used, and used specifically by the regular army, this evidence should be submitted to the U.N. Security Council. And it ought to be convincing. It shouldn’t be based on some rumors and information obtained by intelligence agencies through some kind of eavesdropping, some conversations and things like that.”

Then, according to the Washington Post, Putin declared that he might join a UN-sponsored coalition on Syria:

He said he “doesn’t exclude” backing the use of force against Syria at the United Nations if there is objective evidence proving that Assad’s regime used chemical weapons against its people. But he strongly warned Washington against launching military action without U.N. approval, saying it would represent an aggression. Russia can veto resolutions at the U.N. Security Council and has protected Syria from punitive actions there before.

But a change in tone on the part of Russia and Iran—the latter of whom the Obama administration still refuses to invite to Geneva II if and when it occurs—won’t mean a thing if the object of war with Syria is to send a message to Iran. As Jeffrey Goldberg, writing for Bloomberg, says, for Israel it’s all about Iran:

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel would prefer that Obama enforce his red line on chemical weapons use, because he would like to see proof that Obama believes in the red lines he draws. From Netanyahu’s perspective, Israel isn’t unduly threatened by Assad. Syria constitutes a dangerous, but ultimately manageable, threat.

Netanyahu believes, of course, that Iran, Syria’s primary sponsor, poses an existential threat to his country, and so would like the Iranians to understand very clearly that Obama’s red lines are, in fact, very red. As Robert Satloff, the executive director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, told me last night, the formula is simple: “If the Iranians do not fear Obama, then the Israelis will lose confidence in Obama.”

In his round-robin television appearances on Sunday, Secretary of State John Kerry—now the administration’s über-hawk—repeatedly said that bombing Syria would send a message to Iran. As he told Fox News on Sunday:

“The fact is that if we act and if we act in concert, then Iran will know that this nation is capable of speaking with one voice on something like this, and that has serious, profound implications, I think, with respect to the potential of a confrontation over their nuclear program. That is one of the things that is at stake here.”

http://www.thenation.com/blog/176040/obamas-syria-war-really-about-iran-and-israel#

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David Frost — Rest In Peace — Photos — Videos

Posted on September 5, 2013. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Business, Comedy, Communications, Crime, Culture, Diasters, Economics, Education, Employment, Energy, Entertainment, European History, Federal Government, Foreign Policy, history, Inflation, Investments, Islam, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Literacy, media, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Press, Programming, Rants, Raves, Security, Strategy, Talk Radio, Technology, Terrorism, Video, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Sir Michael Parkinson & Sir David Frost Hold Media Conference

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Richard Nixon, David Frost

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Sir David Frost – from Nixon to Al Jazeera

Published on Jan 25, 2013

04/12/2007 – Legendary TV presenter, interviewer, producer and author, Sir David Frost talks about his remarkable career in television.
Sir David Frost has been described as a “one man conglomerate”. He hosted and co-created That Was the Week it Was, has produced countless television programmes, has written 15 books, produced 8 films, he is a lecturer, a publisher and an impresario.

But he is perhaps best known for being one of the best television interviewers in the world. His Nixon Interviews, according to the New York Times achieved “the largest audience for a news interview in history”. Peter Morgan’s play, Frost/Nixon achieved great success in London and Broadway this year.

He is the only person to have interviewed the last seven Presidents of the United States (Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George Bush Senior, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush) and the last seven Prime Ministers of the United Kingdom (Harold Wilson, James Callaghan, Edward Heath, Margaret Thatcher, John Major, Tony Blair and Gordon Brown).

Sir David now presents Frost Over The World weekly for Al Jazeera English with a variety of newsmakers from Hamad Karzai, President Lula of Brazil, Tony Blair, Mikhail Gorbachev and Benazir Bhutto after the assassination attempt, to Gerry Adams, Madeleine Albright, Gen. Wesley Clark, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Dame Helen Mirren and the first interview with Lewis Hamilton and continues to make Frost Tonight weekly for ITV. He is taking Through The Keyhole into its 21st year on the BBC, has recorded The Frost Years for Radio 4 and is Executive Producing a remake of the film, The Dam Busters with Universal and Peter Jackson.

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shah of iran interview with david frost 1979 contadora island panama full uncut version

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sirhan sirhan Are The comments correct was there a second shooter ??????

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Joan Crawford 1970 interview (Part 3 of 4)

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Brian Clough & Leeds United 1974 The David Frost Interview Part 2 1974

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Uploaded on Apr 23, 2011

That Was The Week That Was, also known as TW3, was a satirical television comedy programme that aired on BBC Television in 1962 and 1963.

Devised, produced and directed by Ned Sherrin, the programme was fronted by David Frost and cast members included improvising cartoonist Timothy Birdsall, political commentator Bernard Levin, and actors Lance Percival, who sidelined in topical calypsos, many improvised in response to suggestions from the audience, Kenneth Cope, Roy Kinnear, Willie Rushton (then known as ‘William’), Al Mancini, Robert Lang, David Kernan and Millicent Martin. The last two were also singers and the programme opened with a song – eponymously entitled That Was The Week That Was – sung by Martin to Ron Grainer’s theme tune and enumerating topics that had been in the past week’s news. Off-screen script-writers included John Albery, John Betjeman, John Bird, Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Peter Cook, Roald Dahl, Richard Ingrams, Gerald Kaufman, Frank Muir, Denis Norden, Bill Oddie, Dennis Potter, Eric Sykes, Kenneth Tynan, Keith Waterhouse and others.

The programme was groundbreaking in its lampooning of the establishment. Prime Minister Harold Macmillan was initially supportive of the programme, chastising the then Postmaster General Reginald Bevins (nominally in charge of broadcasting) for threatening to “do something about it”. During the Profumo affair, however, he became one of the programme’s chief targets for derision. After two successful seasons in 1962 and 1963, the programme did not return in 1964, as this was a General Election year and the BBC decided it would be unduly influential.

At the end of each episode, Frost would usually sign off with: “That was the week, that was.” At the end of the final programme he announced: “That was That Was The Week That Was…that was.”

Frost/Nixon

Frost Nixon Interview Clip 3 of 6 – Why Didnt You Stop It? Frost/Nixon http://www.FrostNixon.com

Frost Nixon Interview Clip 4 of 6 on ” There was no cover up of any criminal activities “

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Nixon interview with David Frost (1 of 6)

Nixon interview with David Frost (2 of 6)

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Nixon interview with David Frost (6 of 6)

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British broadcaster David Frost dies aged 74

By Agence France-Presse
Sunday, September 1, 2013 12:07 EDT

British TV giant David Frost, who interviewed the world’s great and good in a half-century broadcasting career, has died aged 74 of a heart attack on board the Queen Elizabeth cruise liner, his family said Sunday.

Frost, celebrated for his 1977 talks with Richard Nixon that extracted an unexpected apology from the disgraced US president over the Watergate scandal, died Saturday.

Operator Cunard said the ship left its British home port of Southampton on Saturday on a 10-day Mediterranean.

“Sir David Frost died of a heart attack last night aboard the Queen Elizabeth where he was giving a speech,” his family said in a statement.

“His family are devastated and ask for privacy at this difficult time,” the statement said. “A family funeral will be held in the near future and details of a memorial service will be announced in due course.”

Frost’s interviewees read like a who’s who of the rich and famous, from big names in show business to world leaders, including South African anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela.

Frost was the only person to have interviewed the last eight British prime ministers and the last seven US presidents before Barack Obama, and the last person to have interviewed the last shah of Iran, the Mohammed Reza Pahlavi.

Other subjects included Mikhail Gorbachev, Vladimir Putin, Yasser Arafat, F. W. de Klerk, Jacques Chirac and Benazir Bhutto.

“Hello, good evening and welcome” became his catchphrase, starting off interviews with a friendly veneer that belied a blunt determination to extract information.

“His scrupulous and disarming politeness hid a mind like a vice,” said Menzies Campbell, former leader of Britain’s Liberal Democrats. “David Frost could do you over without you realising it until it was too late.”

The lengthy interviews with Nixon were crucial for both men — Nixon was hoping to salvage his reputation for history, while Frost wanted to add another feather to his cap of famous interviews .

In the end, Frost wrung a mea culpa from Nixon over Watergate, the dirty tricks scandal which prompted his resignation in 1974 and left a lasting scar on the US political landscape.

“I let down my friends, I let down the country,” the former president said.

Frost told BBC television in 2009: “We knew what we were trying to do … and in the end his ‘mea culpa’ went further than even we had hoped.

“At the end of that I think we were aware that something sort of historic had happened and we’d gone further than expected.”

The encounter was turned into a play entitled “Frost/Nixon”, which was adapted into a 2008 film with Michael Sheen playing Frost and Frank Langella as Nixon. It was nominated for five Oscars.

Outside world affairs, Front’s roster included Orson Welles, Tennessee Williams, Noel Coward, Elton John, Woody Allen, Muhammad Ali, the Beatles, Clint Eastwood, Anthony Hopkins, John Gielgud, Norman Mailer, Warren Beatty among countless others.

British Prime Minister David Cameron hailed Frost as “an extraordinary man — with charm, wit, talent, intelligence and warmth in equal measure.

“He made a huge impact on television and politics. The Nixon interviews were among the great broadcast moments — but there were many other brilliant interviews,” Cameron said in a statement.

“He could be — and certainly was with me — both a friend and a fearsome interviewer.”

The son of a Methodist minister, David Paradine Frost was born in Kent, southeast England, on April 7, 1939.

Fresh out of Cambridge University, he presented the BBC’s groundbreaking “That Was The Week That Was”, which took an unprecedented satirical look at the week’s news between 1962 and 1963.

A globetrotter, Frost revelled in the Concorde jet-set high life, presenting five programmes a week in the United States and three in Britain.

In 1983, he married Lady Carina Fitzalan-Howard, second daughter of the Duke of Norfolk — the premier duke in the English nobility. They had three sons.

A successful businessman, Frost was knighted in 1993, becoming Sir David.

The broadcaster wrote 17 books, produced several films and started two British television networks, London Weekend Television and TV-am.

He began working for Al Jazeera in 2006.

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2013/09/01/british-broadcaster-david-frost-dies-aged-74/

David Frost, Interviewer Who Got Nixon to Apologize for Watergate, Dies at 74

By BRIAN STELTER

David Frost, the British broadcaster whose interviews of historic figures like Henry Kissinger, John Lennon and, most famously, Richard M. Nixon often made history in their own right, died on Saturday aboard the ocean liner Queen Elizabeth, where he was scheduled to give a speech. He was 74.

The cause was a heart attack, his family said.

Mr. Frost’s highly varied television career mirrored the growth of the medium, from the black-and-white TV of the 1960s to the cable news of today.

He knew how to make his guests “make news,” as the television industry saying goes, either through a sequence of incisive questions or carefully placed silences. He showcased both techniques during his penetrating series of interviews with President Nixon, broadcast in 1977, three years after Mr. Nixon was driven from office by the Watergate scandal, resigning in the face of certain impeachment.

Mr. Frost not only persuaded Mr. Nixon to end a self-imposed silence, he also extracted an apology from the former president to the American people.

The sessions, described as the most-watched political interviews in history, were recalled 30 years later in a play and a film, both named “Frost/Nixon.” In the film, Mr. Frost was portrayed by Michael Sheen and Mr. Nixon by Frank Langella.

Since 2006, Mr. Frost’s television home had been Al Jazeera English, one of the BBC’s main competitors overseas. Mr. Frost brought prestige to the news network, while it empowered him to conduct the kind of newsmaker interviews he most enjoyed.

“No matter who he was interviewing, he was committed to getting the very best out of the discussion, but always doing so by getting to know his guest, engaging with them and entering into a proper conversation,” Al Anstey, the managing director of Al Jazeera English, said by e-mail.

He was “always a true gentleman,” Mr. Anstey added, alluding to the charm that others said made Mr. Frost so successful in securing such a wide array of guests.

Among those guests in recent years were Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey, the actor George Clooney and the tennis star Martina Navratilova. A new season of Mr. Frost’s program, “The Frost Interview,” began in July with the astronaut Buzz Aldrin. The season was to continue through mid-September.

One of his first interviews for Al Jazeera made headlines when his guest, Tony Blair, agreed with Mr. Frost’s assessment that the war in Iraq had, up until that point in 2006, “been pretty much of a disaster.” In a statement on Sunday, Mr. Blair said, “Being interviewed by him was always a pleasure, but also you knew that there would be multiple stories the next day arising from it.”

David Paradine Frost was born April 7, 1939, in Tenterden, England, to Mona and W. J. Paradine Frost. His father was a Methodist minister.

While a student, Mr. Frost edited both a student newspaper and a literary publication at Cambridge University, where he showed a knack for satire — something on which the BBC soon capitalized. In 1962, Mr. Frost became the host of “That Was the Week That Was,” a satirical look at the news on Saturday nights. While it lasted only two seasons in Britain, “TW3,” as it was known, was reborn briefly as a program on NBC, and it is remembered as a forerunner to “The Daily Show” and the “Weekend Update” segment on NBC’s “Saturday Night Live.”

After “TW3,” Mr. Frost was the host of a succession of programs, from entertainment specials (“David Frost’s Night Out in London”) to more intellectually stimulating talk shows. While most of these were televised in Britain, Mr. Frost crossed the Atlantic constantly; he once said he had lost count of the number of times he had flown on the Concorde.

He filled in for Johnny Carson twice in 1968, and was subsequently offered a syndicated talk show, which premiered on a patchwork of stations across the United States a year later. That series came to an end in 1972.

His most memorable work happened several years later, when his interview with Mr. Nixon was broadcast around the world. At one point Mr. Frost asked about Mr. Nixon’s abuses of presidential power, prompting this answer: “Well, when the president does it, that means that it is not illegal.”

“Upon hearing that sentence, I could scarcely believe my ears,” Mr. Frost wrote in a 2007 book about the interview, published to coincide with the “Frost/Nixon” movie. Mr. Frost said his task then “was to keep him talking on this theme for as long as possible.”

By then, Mr. Frost and Mr. Nixon had already spoken on camera several times. And they continued to speak: the interviews, for which Mr. Nixon was paid $600,000 and a share of the profit for the broadcasts, were taped over four weeks for about two hours at a time and eventually totaled nearly 29 hours.

On the last day, Mr. Frost pressed Mr. Nixon to acknowledge the mistakes of the Watergate period. “Unless you say it, you’re going to be haunted for the rest of your life,” Mr. Frost said.

“That was totally ad-lib,” Mr. Frost recalled. “In fact, I threw my clipboard down just to indicate that it was not prepared in any way.” He added: “I just knew at that moment that Richard Nixon was more vulnerable than he’d ever be in his life. And I knew I had to get it right.”

Mr. Nixon apologized for putting “the American people through two years of needless agony,” adding, “I let the American people down and I have to carry that burden with me for the rest of my life.”

Mr. Frost, who was awarded a knighthood in 1993, had recently moved to a home close to Oxford, said Richard Brock, his executive producer at Al Jazeera. He also had a home in London.

Survivors include his second wife, Carina, and their three sons. His first wife, Lynne Frederick, a British actress, was the widow of Peter Sellers; they divorced in 1982. Mr. Frost was also once engaged to the American actress and singer Diahann Carroll.

In interviews, whenever Mr. Frost was asked about the highlight of his career, he cited the Nixon interview.

But Mr. Frost interviewed other presidents as well, including George H. W. Bush, whom he later praised as wise and determined.

“The Nixon interviews were among the great broadcast moments, but there were many other brilliant interviews,” Prime Minister David Cameron of Britain said in a statement on Sunday morning.

Barney Jones, a longtime colleague of Mr. Frost at the BBC, told the news organizationthat Mr. Frost had an interview with Mr. Cameron scheduled for September.

Mr. Jones marveled at Mr. Frost’s contacts, recounting a day when “he took me into my little office, scrabbled around in his contacts book, and five minutes later he was talking to George Bush. I couldn’t believe it.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/02/world/europe/david-frost-known-for-nixon-interview-dead-at-74.html?_r=0#h[]

David Frost

Sir David Paradine Frost, OBE (7 April 1939 – 31 August 2013) was an English journalist, comedian, writer, media personality and television host.

After graduating from Cambridge University, Frost rose to prominence in the UK when he was chosen to host the satirical programme That Was the Week That Was in 1962. His success on this show led to work as a host on US television. He became known for his television interviews with senior political figures, among them The Nixon Interviews with former United States President Richard Nixon in 1977, which were adapted into a stage play and film.

Frost was one of the “Famous Five” who were behind the launch of ITV breakfast station TV-am in 1983. For the BBC, he hosted the Sunday morning interview programme Breakfast with Frost from 1993 to 2005. He spent two decades as host of Through the Keyhole. From 2006 to 2012 he hosted the weekly programme Frost Over the World on Al Jazeera English and from 2012, the weekly programme The Frost Interview.

Frost died on 31 August 2013, aged 74, on board the cruise ship MS Queen Elizabeth, on which he had been engaged as a speaker.[1]

Early life

David Paradine Frost was born in Tenterden, Kent, on 7 April 1939, the son of a Methodist minister of Huguenot descent,[2] the Rev. Wilfred John “W. J.” Paradine Frost, and his wife, Mona (Aldrich); he had two elder sisters.[3][4] While living in Gillingham, Kent, he was taught in the Bible class of the Sunday school at his father’s church (Byron Road Methodist) by David Gilmore Harvey, and subsequently started training as a Methodist local preacher, which he did not complete.[citation needed]

Frost attended Barnsole Road Primary School in Gillingham, then Gillingham Grammar School and finally – while residing in RaundsWellingborough Grammar School. Throughout his school years he was an avid football and cricket player,[3] and was offered a contract with Nottingham Forest F.C.[5] For two years before going to university he was a lay preacher following his witnessing of an event presided over by the Christian evangelist Billy Graham.[2]

Frost studied at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge University, from 1958, graduating from the university with a degree in English. He was editor of both the university’s student paper, Varsity, and the literary magazine Granta. He was also secretary of the Footlights Drama Society,[3] which included actors such as Peter Cook and John Bird. During this period, Frost appeared on television for the first time in an edition of Anglia Television‘s Town And Gown, performing several comic characters. “The first time I stepped into a television studio”, he once remembered, “it felt like home. It didn’t scare me. Talking to the camera seemed the most natural thing in the world.”[6]

According to some accounts, Frost was the victim of snobbery from the group with which he associated at Cambridge, which has been confirmed by Barry Humphries.[7] Christopher Booker, while asserting that Frost’s one defining characteristic was ambition, commented that he was impossible to dislike.[8] According to the satirist John Wells, the Old-Etonian actor Jonathan Cecil congratulated Frost around this time for “that wonderfully silly voice” he used while performing, but then discovered that it was Frost’s real voice.[7]

After leaving university, Frost became a trainee at Associated-Rediffusion. Meanwhile, having already gained an agent, Frost performed in cabaret at the Blue Angel nightclub in Berkeley Square, London during the evenings.[2][9]

That Was the Week That Was (TW3)

Frost was chosen by writer and producer Ned Sherrin to host the satirical programme That Was the Week That Was, alias TW3 after Frost’s flat mate John Bird suggested Sherrin should see his act at The Blue Angel. The series, which ran for less than 18 months during 1962-63, was part of the satire boom in early 1960s Britain and became a popular programme.

The involvement of Frost in TW3 led to an intensification of the rivalry with Peter Cook who accused him of stealing material and dubbed Frost “the bubonic plagiarist”.[10] The new satirical magazine Private Eye also mocked him at this time. Frost visited the United States during the break between the two series of TW3 in the summer of 1963 and stayed with the producer of the New York production of Beyond The Fringe. Frost was unable to swim, but still jumped into the pool, and nearly drowned until he was saved by Peter Cook. At the memorial service for Cook in 1995, Alan Bennett recalled that rescuing Frost was the one regret Cook frequently expressed.[11]

For the first three editions of the second series in 1963, the BBC attempted to limit the team by scheduling repeats of The Third Man television series after the programme, thus preventing overruns. Frost took to reading synopses of the episodes at the end of the programme as a means of sabotage. After the BBC’s Director General Hugh Greene instructed that the repeats should be abandoned, TW3 returned to being open-ended.[12] More sombrely, on 23 November 1963, a tribute to the assassinated President John F. Kennedy, an event which had occurred the previous day, formed an entire edition of That Was the Week That Was.[13]

An American version of TW3 ran after the original British series had ended. Following a pilot episode on 10 November 1963, the 30-minute US series, also featuring Frost, ran on NBC from 10 January 1964 to May 1965. In 1985, Frost produced and hosted a television special in the same format, That Was the Year That Was, on NBC.

Post-TW3

Frost fronted various programmes following the success of TW3, including its immediate successor, Not So Much a Programme, More a Way of Life, which he co-chaired with Willie Rushton and poet P. J. Kavanagh. Screened on three evenings each week, this series was dropped after a sketch was found to be offensive to Catholics and another to the British royal family.[13] More successful was The Frost Report, broadcast between 1966 and 1967. The show launched the television careers of John Cleese, Ronnie Barker and Ronnie Corbett, who appeared together in the Class sketch.

Frost signed for Rediffusion, the ITV weekday contractor in London, to produce a “heavier” interview-based show called The Frost Programme. Guests included Sir Oswald Mosley and Rhodesian premier Ian Smith. His memorable dressing-down of insurance fraudster Emil Savundra, regarded as the first example of “trial by television” in the UK, led to concern from ITV executives that it might affect Savundra’s right to a fair trial.[2] Frost’s introductory words for his television programmes during this period, “Hello, good evening and welcome”, became his catchphrase and were often mimicked.[1]

Frost was a member of a successful consortium, including former executives from the BBC, which bid for an ITV franchise in 1967. This became London Weekend Television, which began broadcasting in July 1968. The station began with a programming policy which was considered ‘highbrow‘ and suffered launch problems with low audience ratings and financial problems. A September 1968 meeting of the Network Programme Committee, which made decisions about the channel’s scheduling, was particularly fraught, with Lew Grade expressing hatred of Frost in his presence.[14][15] Frost, according to Kitty Muggeridge in 1967, had “risen without a trace.”[16]

He was involved in the station’s early years as a presenter. On 20 and 21 July 1969, during the British television Apollo 11 coverage, he presented David Frost’s Moon Party for LWT, a ten-hour discussion and entertainment marathon from LWT’s Wembley Studios, on the night Neil Armstrong walked on the moon. Two of his guests on this programme were British historian A.J.P. Taylor and entertainer Sammy Davis, Jr.[17]

In the same period he began an intermittent involvement in the film industry. Setting up David Paradine Ltd in 1966,[13][18] he part-financed The Rise and Rise of Michael Rimmer (1970), in which the lead character was based partly on Frost, and gained an executive producer credit.

American career from 1968 to 1980

In 1968 he signed a contract worth £125,000 to appear on American television in his own show on three evenings each week, the largest such arrangement for a British television personality[6] at the time. From 1969 to 1972, Frost kept his London shows and fronted The David Frost Show on the Group W (U.S. Westinghouse Corporation) television stations in the United States.[19] His 1970 TV special, Frost on America, featured guests such as Jack Benny and Tennessee Williams.[20]

In a declassified transcript of a 1972 telephone call between Frost and Henry Kissinger, President Nixon‘s National Security Advisor and Secretary of State, Frost urged Kissinger to call chess grandmaster Bobby Fischer and urge him to compete in that year’s World Chess Championship.[21][22] During this call, Frost revealed that he was working on a novel.[22]

In 1977 The Nixon Interviews, a series of five 90-minute interviews with former US President Richard Nixon, were broadcast. Nixon was paid $600,000 plus a share of the profits for the interviews, which had to be funded by Frost himself after the US television networks turned down the programme, describing it as “checkbook journalism“. Frost’s company negotiated its own deals to syndicate the interviews with local stations across the US and internationally, creating what Ron Howard described as “the first fourth network.”[23]

Frost taped around 29 hours of interviews with Nixon over a period of four weeks. Nixon, who had previously avoided discussing his role in the Watergate scandal which had led to his resignation as President in 1974, expressed contrition saying “I let the American people down and I have to carry that burden with me for the rest of my life”.[24][25]

Following the 1979 Iranian Revolution Frost was the last person to interview Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the deposed Shah of Iran.[26] The interview took place in Panama in January 1980,[27] and was broadcast by ABC in the United States on 17 January.[28]

Frost was an organiser of the Music for UNICEF Concert at the United Nations General Assembly in 1979. Ten years later, he was hired as the anchor of the new American tabloid news program Inside Edition.. He was dismissed after only three weeks, and then-ABC News reporter Bill O’Reilly was recruited as his replacement.

After 1980

Frost was one of the “Famous Five” who launched TV-am in February 1983 but, like LWT in the late 1960s, the station began with an unsustainable “highbrow” approach. Frost remained a presenter after restructuring. Frost on Sunday began in September 1983 and continued until the station lost its franchise at the end of 1992. Frost had been part of an unsuccessful consortium, CPV-TV, with Richard Branson and other interests, which had attempted to acquire three ITV contractor franchises prior to the changes made by the Independent Television Commission in 1991. After transferring from ITV, his Sunday morning interview programme Breakfast with Frost ran on the BBC from January 1993 until 29 May 2005. For a time it ran on BSB before its later Sunday morning rebroadcast on BBC 1.[citation needed]

Frost hosted Through the Keyhole, which ran on several UK channels from 1987 until 2008 and also featured Loyd Grossman. Produced by his own production company, the programme was first shown in prime time and on daytime television in its later years.[13]

Frost worked for Al Jazeera English, presenting a live weekly hour-long current affairs programme, Frost Over The World, which started when the network launched in November 2006. The programme regularly made headlines with interviewees such as Tony Blair, President Omar al-Bashir of Sudan, Benazir Bhutto and President Daniel Ortega of Nicaragua. The programme was produced by the former Question Time editor and Independent on Sunday journalist Charlie Courtauld. Frost was one of the first to interview the man who authored the Fatwa on Terrorism, Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri.[29]

During his career as a broadcaster Frost became one of Concorde‘s most frequent fliers, having flown between London and New York an average of 20 times per year for 20 years.[30][31]

In 2007, Frost hosted a discussion with Libya’s leader Muammar Gaddafi as part of the Monitor Group‘s involvement in the country.[32] In June 2010, Frost presented Frost on Satire, an hour-long BBC Four documentary looking at the history of television satire. Prominent satirists who were interviewed for the programme include Rory Bremner, Ian Hislop, John Lloyd, Chevy Chase, Bill Maher, Jon Stewart, Will Ferrell and Tina Fey.

Achievements

Frost interviewing Vladimir Putin for the BBC’s Breakfast with Frost in March 2000

Frost was the only person to have interviewed all eight British prime ministers serving between 1964 and 2010 (Harold Wilson, Edward Heath, James Callaghan, Margaret Thatcher, John Major, Tony Blair, Gordon Brown and David Cameron) and all seven US presidents in office between 1969 and 2008 (Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush).[2]

He was a patron and former vice-president of the Motor Neurone Disease Association charity, as well as being a patron of the Alzheimer’s Research Trust, the Hearing Trust,[33] East Anglia‘s Children’s Hospices, the Home Farm Trust and the Elton John AIDS Foundation.[34][35][36]

After having been in television for 40 years, Frost was estimated to be worth £200 million by the Sunday Times Rich List in 2006,[37] a figure he considered a significant over-estimate in 2011.[10] The valuation included the assets of his main British company and subsidiaries, plus homes in London and the country.

Frost/Nixon

Frost/Nixon was originally a play written by Peter Morgan, developed from The Nixon Interviews which Frost had conducted with Richard Nixon in 1977. Frost/Nixon was presented as a stage production in London in 2006, and on Broadway in 2007. The play was adapted into a Hollywood motion picture starring Michael Sheen as Frost and Frank Langella as Nixon, both reprising their stage roles. The film was directed by Ron Howard and released in 2008. It was nominated for five Golden Globe awards: Best Motion Picture Drama, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Screenplay and Best Original Score,[38] and for five Academy Awards: Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Editing.

In February 2009, Frost was featured on the Australian Broadcasting Corporation‘s international affairs programme Foreign Correspondent in a report titled “The World According To Frost”, reflecting on his long career and portrayal in the film Frost/Nixon.[39]

Personal life

Frost was known for several relationships with high profile women. In the mid-1960s, he dated British actress Janette Scott, between her marriages to songwriter Jackie Rae and singer Mel Tormé; in the early 1970s he was engaged to American actress Diahann Carroll; between 1972 and 1977 he had a relationship with British socialite Caroline Cushing; in 1981 he married Lynne Frederick, widow of Peter Sellers, but they divorced the following year.[3] He also had an 18-year intermittent affair with American actress Carol Lynley.[40]

On 19 March 1983, Frost married Lady Carina Fitzalan-Howard, daughter of the 17th Duke of Norfolk.[3] Over the next five years, they had three sons, Miles, Wilfred and George,[41] and for many years lived in Chelsea, with their weekend home at Michelmersh Court in Hampshire.[42]

Death

On 31 August 2013, Frost was aboard a Cunard Line cruise ship, the MS Queen Elizabeth, when he had a heart attack and died.[43][44] Cunard said that the vessel had left Southampton for a ten-day cruise in the Mediterranean ending in Rome.[45] British Prime Minister David Cameron paid tribute, saying: “He could be—and certainly was with me—both a friend and a fearsome interviewer.”[46] Michael Grade commented: “He was kind of a television renaissance man. He could put his hand to anything. He could turn over Richard Nixon or he could win the comedy prize at the Montreux Golden Rose festival.”[47]

Selected awards and honours

Bibliography

Non-fiction
  • To England with Love (1968). With Antony Jay.
  • The Presidential Debate, 1968 : David Frost talks with Vice-President Hubert H. Humphrey (and others) (1968).
  • The Americans (1970)
  • Billy Graham Talks with David Frost (1972)
  • “I Gave Them a Sword”: Behind the Scenes of the Nixon Interviews (1978). Reissued as Frost/Nixon in 2007.
  • David Frost’s Book of Millionaires, Multimillionaires, and Really Rich People (1984)
  • The World’s Shortest Books (1987)
  • An Autobiography. Part 1: From Congregations to Audiences (1993)
With Michael Deakin and illustrated by Willie Rushton
  • I Could Have Kicked Myself: David Frost’s Book of the World’s Worst Decisions (1982)
  • Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? (1983)
  • If You’ll Believe That (1986)
With Michael Shea
  • The Mid-Atlantic Companion, or, How to Misunderstand Americans as Much as They Misunderstand Us (1986)
  • The Rich Tide: Men, Women, Ideas and Their Transatlantic Impact (1986)

References

  1. ^ a b “Sir David Frost, broadcaster and writer, dies at 74”. BBC. 1 September 2013. Retrieved 1 September 2013.
  2. ^ a b c d e Stuart Jeffries Obituary: Sir David Frost, The Guardian, 1 September 2013
  3. ^ a b c d e TimeLine Theatre Company, Chicago: Frost/Nixon Study Guide Retrieved 2 October 2011
  4. ^ Frost, famous for Nixon interview, dies | The Journal Gazette
  5. ^ Duff, Oliver (2 May 2005). “My Life in Media: Sir David Frost”. The Independent. Retrieved 11 August 2013.
  6. ^ a b Obituary: Sir David Frost, telegraph.co.uk, 1 September 2013
  7. ^ a b Humphrey Carpenter That Was Satire That Was: The Satire Boom of the 1960s, London: Victor Gollancz, 2000, p.207
  8. ^ Carpenter, p.207-8
  9. ^ Carpenter, p.208-9
  10. ^ a b Simon Hattenstone “The Saturday interview: David Frost”, The Guardian, 2 July 2011
  11. ^ Carpenter That Was Satire That Was, p.261
  12. ^ Carpenter That Was Satire That Was, p.270-1
  13. ^ a b c d Michael Leapman “Sir David Frost: Pioneering journalist and broadcaster whose fame often equalled that of his interviewees”, The Independent, 1 September 2013
  14. ^ David Frost An Autobiography: Part One From Congregation to Audiences, London: HarperCollins, 1993, p.382
  15. ^ “British TV History: The ITV Story: Part 10: The New Franchises”, Teletronic
  16. ^ “Broadcaster Frost rose from satire to friendly interviewer”, The Standard (Hong Kong), 2 September 2013
  17. ^ “ITV Moon Landing Coverage”. British TV History. Archived from the original on 23 July 2011. Retrieved 18 February 2008.
  18. ^ The Daily Telegraph obituary says ‘David Paradine Productions’ was established in 1968.
  19. ^ The David Frost Show
  20. ^ Zajacz, Rita. “FROST, DAVID”. The Museum of Broadcast Communications.
  21. ^ Harper, Lauren (19 July 2013). “Henry Kissinger Jokes About Making a Pawn of Bobby Fischer”. National Security Archive. Retrieved 2 August 2013. “The tournament was dramatic enough thanks to Fischer’s antics, but telephone conversation on 3 July 1972, capturing British journalist David Frost asking Kissinger to persuade the grandmaster to attend the championship adds more to the story. Kissinger had an intellectual interest in chess, and the Spassky-Fischer head-to-head alone would have likely piqued his interest in the match, but Frost wanted Kissinger to get involved to ensure Fischer’s participation.”
  22. ^ a b “Declassified transcript of phone call from David Frost to Henry Kissinger”. National Security Archive. 3 July 1972.
  23. ^ Stanley, Alessandra (2 2013). “AN APPRAISAL David Frost: Newsman, Showman, and Suave at Both”. The New York Times. Retrieved 2 September 2013.
  24. ^ “· David Frost Dies Aged 74”. Wall Street Journal. 1 September 2013. Retrieved 1 September 2013.
  25. ^ “David Frost, Who Interviewed Nixon, Is Dead at 74”. New York Times. 1 September 2013. Retrieved 1 September 2013.
  26. ^ “· Sir David Frost Dies Of Heart Attack On Ship”. Sky News. 1 September 2011. Retrieved 1 September 2013.
  27. ^ “On Iran”, (Breakfast with Frost) BBC News, 12 December 2004
  28. ^ Gholam Reza Afkham The Life and Times of the Shah, Berkeley: University of California Press, 2008, p.655 n.17:7
  29. ^ “Frost over the World – Rafael Moreno and Muhammad Tahir al-Qadri”. Youtube.com. Retrieved 26 October 2010.
  30. ^ Orlebar, Christopher (2004). The Concorde story. Osprey Publishing. p. 181. ISBN 978-1-85532-667-5.
  31. ^ Quest, Richard (3 October 2003). “Why Concorde mattered”. The Independent.
  32. ^ Overby, Peter (10 March 2011). “U.S. Firm Under Fire For Gadhafi Makeover Contract”. Npr.org. Retrieved 1 September 2013.
  33. ^ “Hearing Trust”. Hearing Trust. Retrieved 26 October 2010.
  34. ^ “Our patrons”. Elton John AIDS Foundation. Retrieved 1 September 2013.
  35. ^ CaritasData (2006). Who’s Who in Charities 2007. ISBN 1-904964-27-3.
  36. ^ “Patrons page at Alzheimer’s Research UK”. Alzheimersresearchuk.org. Retrieved 4 October 2011.
  37. ^ Beresford, Philip, ed. (2006). The “Sunday Times” Rich List 2006–2007: 5,000 of the Wealthiest People in the United Kingdom. A & C Black Publishers Ltd. ISBN 0-7136-7941-7.
  38. ^ [1][dead link] (subscription required)
  39. ^ Corcoran, Mark (17 February 2009). “The World According to Frost”. ABC Online.
  40. ^ W. Lee Cozad, More Magnificent Mountain Movies: The Silverscreen Years, 1940-2004, page 219 (Sunstroke Media, 2006). ISBN 978-0-9723372-2-9
  41. ^ First Reaction byline (2 September 2013). “David Frost: tributes to TV’s ‘most illustrious inquisitor'”. The Week. Retrieved 2 September 2013.
  42. ^ “For sale: the stunning Hampshire home of Sir David Frost”. Daily Telegraph.
  43. ^ “Sir David Frost, broadcaster and writer, dies at 74”. BBC News. Retrieved 1 September 2013.
  44. ^ Carter, Claire (1 September 2013). “Sir David Frost dies of heart attack”. Telegraph Media Group. Retrieved 2 September 2013.
  45. ^ Cruise company pays tribute to Sir David Frost | Meridian – ITV News
  46. ^ Al Jazeera host David Frost dies – Europe – Al Jazeera English
  47. ^ “David Frost dies aged 74”. The Guardian. Retrieved 1 September 2013.
  48. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 45117. pp. 6373–6374. 5 June 1970. Retrieved 11 August 2013.
  49. ^ The London Gazette: no. 53284. p. 7209. 23 April 1993. Retrieved 11 August 2013.
  50. ^ a b c d David Frost Speaker Profile

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Posted on September 4, 2013. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Demographics, Diasters, Economics, Energy, European History, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, history, Islam, Islam, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Natural Gas, People, Philosophy, Photos, Pistols, Politics, Rants, Raves, Religion, Rifles, Security, Shite, Strategy, Sunni, Talk Radio, Terrorism, Unemployment, Video, War, Water, Wealth, Weapons, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

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Jeremy_Salt_tv

The Balkanization of Syria Part 1

Published on Aug 5, 2013

Part 1 of an interview with Jeremy Salt on the Syrian conflict conducted by Susan Dirgham. Recorded in Melbourne on 29 July, 2013

Foreign Attempts to Divide Syria Through Sectarianism Part 2

Part 2 of an interview with Jeremy Salt on the Syrian conflict conducted by Susan Dirgham. Recorded in Melbourne on 29 July, 2013.

Syria, Academics and the Media Part 3

Published on Aug 5, 2013

Part 3 of an interview with Jeremy Salt on the Syrian conflict conducted by Susan Dirgham. Recorded in Melbourne on 29 July, 2013.

Syria, Education and Propaganda Part 4

Published on Aug 5, 2013

Part 4 of an interview with Jeremy Salt on the Syrian conflict conducted by Susan Dirgham. Recorded in Melbourne on 29 July, 2013.

The Role of the Media in Disinformation about Syria Part 5

Published on Aug 5, 2013

Part 5 of an interview with Jeremy Salt on the Syrian conflict conducted by Susan Dirgham. Recorded in Melbourne on 29 July, 2013.

Syria – A History of Cultural Diversity Part 6

Published on Aug 5, 2013

Part 6 of an interview with Jeremy Salt on the Syrian conflict conducted by Susan Dirgham. Recorded in Melbourne on 29 July, 2013.

Academic self-interest behind West as anoble a motives in Mideast

NATO start deployment of MISSILES & TROOPS to Turkey-Syria Border

‘Nothing noble in the Middle East, pure self-interest’

“Syria war consequences totally unpredictable” [Professor Jeremy Salt, RT]

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A History of Syria — Videos

Posted on September 4, 2013. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Communications, Demographics, Economics, Energy, European History, Federal Government, Foreign Policy, Genocide, government, government spending, history, Immigration, Islam, Islam, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Literacy, media, Natural Gas, Oil, People, Photos, Pistols, Politics, Rants, Raves, Religion, Rifles, Shite, Strategy, Sunni, Talk Radio, Terrorism, Unemployment, Video, War, Water, Wealth, Weapons, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Weather, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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syria-map

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Documentary BBC – A History of Syria (2013)

Syria: What’s Behind the Conflict

On Syria’s History of Inclusiveness

Know Your News! Understanding the Syrian Revolution in Under 4 Minutes

The Balkanization of Syria Part 1

Published on Aug 5, 2013

Part 1 of an interview with Jeremy Salt on the Syrian conflict conducted by Susan Dirgham. Recorded in Melbourne on 29 July, 2013

Foreign Attempts to Divide Syria Through Sectarianism Part 2

Part 2 of an interview with Jeremy Salt on the Syrian conflict conducted by Susan Dirgham. Recorded in Melbourne on 29 July, 2013.

Syria, Academics and the Media Part 3

Published on Aug 5, 2013

Part 3 of an interview with Jeremy Salt on the Syrian conflict conducted by Susan Dirgham. Recorded in Melbourne on 29 July, 2013.

Syria, Education and Propaganda Part 4

Published on Aug 5, 2013

Part 4 of an interview with Jeremy Salt on the Syrian conflict conducted by Susan Dirgham. Recorded in Melbourne on 29 July, 2013.

The Role of the Media in Disinformation about Syria Part 5

Published on Aug 5, 2013

Part 5 of an interview with Jeremy Salt on the Syrian conflict conducted by Susan Dirgham. Recorded in Melbourne on 29 July, 2013.

Syria – A History of Cultural Diversity Part 6

Published on Aug 5, 2013

Part 6 of an interview with Jeremy Salt on the Syrian conflict conducted by Susan Dirgham. Recorded in Melbourne on 29 July, 2013.

Academic self-interest behind West as anoble a motives in Mideast

NATO start deployment of MISSILES & TROOPS to Turkey-Syria Border

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History of the post-war Syria

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Obama’s Red Lines — Videos

Posted on September 4, 2013. Filed under: Ammunition, Blogroll, Bomb, Business, Communications, Crime, Demographics, Diasters, Economics, Federal Government, Foreign Policy, Genocide, government, Islam, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, People, Philosophy, Photos, Pistols, Politics, Press, Psychology, Rants, Raves, Rifles, Talk Radio, Technology, Terrorism, Video, War, Water, Wealth, Weapons, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

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Cartoon Ramirez Obama Red Line

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US President Barack Obama in ‘red line’ warning to Syria over chemical weapons”

President Obama has decided to Take Military Action on Syria – FULL Statement 8/31/2013

President Obama: I Didn’t Set The Red Line, The World Set The Red Line

Rand Paul: Islamic Rebels In Syria Won’t Be American Allies, Mistake To Get Involved

Rand Paul Grills John Kerry: Will Obama Honor Congress’ Vote or Make ‘Constitutional Theater’

Donald Rumsfeld Blasts Obama’s ‘Red Line’ He Will ‘Blame Everybody and Anybody’ But Himself

With Focus on U.S.-Led Strikes, Global Failure to Meet Syria’s Humanitarian Crisis Goes Unnoticed

Syria : Chemical attack claims reignites Obama’s ‘Red Line’ intervention in Syria (Aug 21, 2013)

Syria : The Red Line has been crossed Obama to send military aid to al qaeda rebels (Jun 13, 2013)

President Obama Gets Instructed in Israel: We are following the Red Line, sir.

Glenn Beck Obama Is Going To Start World WAR 3 If They Attack Syria!

GLENN BECK SAID WORLD WAR 3 IS COMING

Rush Limbaugh Says Obama’s ‘Red Line’ Blame Shifting Puts His ‘Stability’ in Question: ‘Psycopathic’

Jon Stewart Slams Syrian Red Line, Begs Cable News ‘Idiot Parade’ to ‘Shut the F*ck Up’

Jon Stewart harnesses of Obama about the Red Line from Syria

Rush Limbaugh: Media Trying to ‘Protect’ Obama From His Own ‘Red Line’ in Syria

Michael Savage on Syria: “There’s never enough war for these sickos!”

Michael Savage Interviews Walid Shoebat – August 22, 2013 – Latest Concerns About Barack Obama

Americans Oppose US Intervention In Syria But…

Syria : The Red Line has been crossed Obama to send military aid to al qaeda rebels (Jun 13, 2013)

Panel Takes on Obama ‘Red Line’ on Syria, Bill Kristol Calls Pres ‘Irresponsible’ Not Wanting War

WW3 REPORT: ISRAEL V SYRIA. OBAMA’S RED LINE

Poll States 60% Of Americans Against U.S. Intervention In Syria

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Documentary BBC – A History of Syria (2013)

Obama’s red lines

By Raymond Thomas Pronk

President Obama has a credibility problem concerning red lines.

On Aug. 20, 2012 in a televised press conference from the White House Obama said, “We have been very clear to the Assad regime, but also to other players on the ground, that a red line for us is we start seeing a whole bunch of chemical weapons moving around or being utilized. That would change my calculus.” A YouTube video titled “US President Barack Obama in ‘red line’ warning to Syria over chemical weapons” captured Obama’s statement.

On Sept. 4 in a televised press conference in Stockholm, Obama said, “I didn’t set a red line, the world set a red line. My credibility’s not on the line. The international community’s credibility is on the line. And America and Congress’ credibility’s on the line.” A YouTube video titled “President Obama: I Didn’t Set The Red Line, The World Set The Red Line” captured Obama’s latest statement regarding a red line.

Sen. Rand Paul (R.-Ky.) appeared on “Face The Nation” on Sept. 1 and was asked the question “How would the United States look if the president says I have decided to take military action,  I want Congress to give me authority, Congress does not give that authority?”

Paul answered, “I think it would show that he made a grave mistake when he drew a red line. I think a president should be very careful about red lines he is not going to keep.   But, then again, when you set a red line that was not a good idea and now you are going to adhere to it or show your machismo, I think then you are trying to save face and adding bad policy to bad policy.”

On Aug. 31, Obama announced that he would be seeking from Congress a resolution authorizing military action against the Assad regime for using chemical weapons on the Syrian people.

On Sept. 3 the Senate Foreign Relations Committee held a hearing on Syria. Paul praised Obama for asking Congress for a resolution to use military force. However, he pressed Secretary of State John Kerry as to whether Obama would still order military action should Congress vote down the resolution.

Kerry said, “The president still has the constitutional authority and he would be in keeping with the Constitution.”

Paul replied, “I disagree. I do not believe he has the constitutional authority.” “This power is a Congressional power and it is not an executive power. They didn’t say big war or small war. They didn’t say boots on the ground or no boots on the ground. They said declare war. Ask the people on the ships launching the missiles whether they are involved with war or not. If we do not say that the Constitution applies, if we do not say explicitly we will abide by this vote, you are making a joke of us. You are making us into theater. So we are playing constitutional theater for the president. If this is real you will abide by the verdict of Congress,” Paul added.  A YouTube video titled “Rand Paul Grills John Kerry: Will Obama Honor Congress’ Vote or Make ‘Constitutional Theater” captured the exchange between and Paul and Kerry.

Paul paraphrased the words of James Madison, the father of the Constitution, who wrote in a letter to Thomas Jefferson in 1798, “The Constitution supposes, what the history of all governments demonstrates that the executive is the branch of power most interested in war, and most prone to it.  It has accordingly with studied care vested the question of war to the legislature.”

Paul agrees with Madison who wrote in 1793, “The power to declare war, including the power of judging the causes of war, is fully and exclusively vested in the legislature . . . the executive has no right, in any case, to decide the question, whether there is or is not cause for declaring war.”

Obama would be well advised not to cross this constitutional red line, since in poll after poll the American people have indicated they do not want military action in Syria.

Raymond Thomas Pronk presents the Pronk Pops Show on KDUX web radio from 3-5 p.m. Fridays and authors the companion blog http://www.pronkpops.wordpress.com.

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Who used chemical weapons in Syria? Syrian Rebels (FSA) or Syrian Regime (SAA) — American People Do Not Want To Take Sides in Syrian Civil War — Videos

Posted on September 3, 2013. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Bomb, College, Communications, Diasters, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Foreign Policy, Genocide, government, government spending, history, Islam, Islam, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, People, Philosophy, Politics, Rants, Raves, Religion, Science, Security, Shite, Sunni, Talk Radio, Terrorism, Transportation, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , |

Syrian-Rebels-Canister

Syrian “rebels” are firing chemical weapons.

Published on Aug 26, 2013

FSA or SAA?
FSA or SAA?
FSA or SAA?
Syrian “rebels” are firing chemical weapons.
Syrian “rebels” are firing chemical weapons.
Syrian “rebels” are firing chemical weapons.

SYRIA UPDATE: Chemical Weapons Used For False Flag Operations.

FULL: President Obama Decides US to Take Military Action on Syria – Statement 8/31/2013

Syria Rebels testing Tekkim chemicals to use as chem weapons

Published on Dec 5, 2012

This video appeared on YouTube yesterday showing what appears to be a rebel group in Syria testing a chemical combination to be used as a chemical weapon (most likely nerve agents as judged by the reaction of lab rabbits in the video) and threatening to use this chem weapon against civilians in Syria on a sectarian basis.

Non-Arabic speakers: Please click the captions button.

Pat Buchanan: Syria Chemical Weapons Attack “Reeks of False Flag Operation”

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CHEMICAL WEAPONS: US Armed FSA Syrian Rebels Use SARIN NERVE GAS!

Published on May 11, 2013

CHEMICAL WEAPONS: US Armed FSA Syrian Rebels Use SARIN NERVE GAS!

The US Defense Secretary says the old order in the Middle East is disappearing, although it’s still not clear what will replace it. Chuck Hagel stressed the conflict in Syria is becoming increasingly more sectarian and extremist, with the country’s collapse now more real than ever. But, while some US lawmakers make fresh calls for military intervention, Washington’s taken a backseat.

GENEVA — U.N. human rights investigators have gathered testimony from casualties of Syria’s civil war and medical staff indicating that rebel forces have used the nerve agent sarin, one of the lead investigators said on Sunday.

The United Nations independent commission of inquiry on Syria has not yet seen evidence of government forces having used chemical weapons, which are banned under international law, said commission member Carla Del Ponte.

“Our investigators have been in neighboring countries interviewing victims, doctors and field hospitals and, according to their report of last week which I have seen, there are strong, concrete suspicions but not yet incontrovertible proof of the use of sarin gas, from the way the victims were treated,” Del Ponte said in an interview with Swiss-Italian television.

“This was use on the part of the opposition, the rebels, not by the government authorities,” she added.

Del Ponte, a former Swiss attorney-general who also served as prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, gave no details as to when or where sarin may have been used.

The Geneva-based inquiry into war crimes and other human rights violations is separate from an investigation of the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria instigated by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, which has since stalled.

President Bashar al-Assad’s government and the rebels accuse each another of carrying out three chemical weapon attacks, one near Aleppo and another near Damascus, both in March, and another in Homs in December.

The civil war began with anti-government protests in March 2011. The conflict has now claimed an estimated 70,000 lives and forced 1.2 million Syrian refugees to flee.

The United States has said it has “varying degrees of confidence” that sarin has been used by Syria’s government on its people.

President Barack Obama last year declared that the use or deployment of chemical weapons by Assad would cross a “red line”.

UN has testimony showing Syrian rebels used sarin gas

Syrian Rebels Claim Saudi Prince Bandar Responsible For Chemical Weapons Attack

CHEMICAL WARFARE: Al-Nusra REBELS fighters detained in TURKEY after found in possession of SARIN GAS

Is Turkey supplying chemical weapons to rebels in Syria?

Yes, the Syrian Rebels DO Have Access to Chemical Weapons

Washington’s Blog
Sept 2, 2013

One of the U.S. government’s main justifications for its claim that the Syrian government carried out a chemical weapons attack is that the rebels don’t have chemical weapons.

However, multiple lines of evidence show that the rebels do have chemical weapons.

Potential Looting of Syrian Weapons

The Washington Post noted last December:

U.S. officials are increasingly worried that Syria’s weapons of mass destruction could fall into the hands of Islamist extremists, rogue generals or other uncontrollable factions.

Last week, fighters from a group that the Obama administration has branded aterrorist organization were among rebels who seized the Sheik Suleiman military base near Aleppo, where research on chemical weapons had been conducted. Rebels are also closing in on another base near Aleppo, known as Safirah, which has served as a major production center for such munitions, according to U.S. officials and analysts.

***

A former Syrian general who once led the army’s chemical weapons training program said that the main storage sites for mustard gas and nerve agents are supposed to be guarded by thousands of Syrian troops but that they would be easily overrun.

The sites are not secure, retired Maj. Gen. Adnan Silou, who defected to the opposition in June, said in an interview near Turkey’s border with Syria. “Probablyanyone from the Free Syrian Army or any Islamic extremist group could take them over,” he said.

***

As the Syrian opposition steadily makes territorial gains, U.S. officials and analysts said the odds are increasing that insurgents will seize control of a chemical weapons site or that Syrian troops guarding the installations will simply abandon their posts.

It’s almost inevitable,” [Michael Eisenstadt, a retired Army officer who directs the military and security studies program at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy] said. “It may have already happened, for what we know.”

***

Last week, the Syrian Foreign Ministry said the al-Nusra Front — an anti-Assad group that has been labeled a terrorist organization by the United States and is also known as Jabhat al-Nusra — had seized a chlorine factory near the town of Safirah, east of Aleppo. “Terrorist groups may resort to using chemical weapons against the Syrian people,” the ministry cautioned.

AP reports:

Questions remaining about who actually controls some of Syria’s chemical weapons stores ….

A report by the Office of the Director for National Intelligence outlining that evidence against Syria includes a few key caveats — including acknowledging that the U.S. intelligence community no longer has the certainty it did six months ago of where the regime’s chemical weapons are stored ….

U.S. and allied spies have lost track of who controls some of the country’s chemical weapons supplies, according to the two intelligence officials and two other U.S. officials.

***

U.S. analysts … are also not certain that when they saw what looked like Assad’s forces moving chemical supplies, those forces were able to remove everything before rebels took over an area where weapons had been stored.

AP hit the nail on the head when it wrote:

U.S. intelligence officials are not so certain that the suspected chemical attack was carried out on Assad’s orders, or even completely sure it was carried out by government forces, the officials said.

***

Another possibility that officials would hope to rule out: that stocks had fallen out of the government’s control and were deployed by rebels in a callous and calculated attempt to draw the West into the war.

Looting of Libyan Chemical Weapons

Fox News reported in 2011:

In August, Fox News interviewed Rep. Mike Rogers, R.-Mich., who said he saw a chemical weapon stockpile in the country during a 2004 trip. At the time, he said the U.S. was concerned about “thousands of pounds of very active mustard gas.”

He also said there is some sarin gas that is unaccounted for.

The Wall Street Journal noted in 2011:

Spread across the desert here off the Sirte-Waddan road sits one of the biggest threats to Western hopes for Libya: a massive, unguarded weapons depot that is being pillaged daily by anti-Gadhafi military units, hired work crews and any enterprising individual who has the right vehicle and chooses to make the trip.

In one of dozens of warehouses the size of a single-family home, Soviet-era guided missiles remain wrapped inside crates stacked to the 15-foot ceiling. In another, dusted with sand, are dozens of sealed cases labeled “warhead.” Artillery rounds designed to carry chemical weapons are stashed in the back of another. Rockets, antitank grenades and projectiles of all calibers are piled so high they defy counting….

Convoys of armed groups from all over Libya have made the trek here and piled looted weapons into trailer trucks, dump trucks, buses and even empty meat trucks….

The highly-regarded NTI reported the same year:

In the desert near Sirte, there was no security for dozens of small armories at the complex, where weapons are removed every day by opposition fighters, paid contractors and others. In one structure, the word “warhead” was stamped on dozens of sealed containers. At another depot, empty chemical agent munitions were found.

There is at present no viable Libyan government-sanctioned force with the capacity to keep freelancer fighters from taking what they please from the warehouses, according to the Journal.

***

U.S. Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) visited the Libyan capital, where he said gaining control over the country’s armories was a “very big topic.”

“We have a game plan to secure the weapon caches, particularly biological and chemical weapons,” McCain said.

The Telegraph reported last year:

Al Qaeda terrorists in North Africa could be in possession of chemical weapons, a leading Spanish intelligence officer said on Monday.

The head of National Police counter-terrorist intelligence, Commissioner-General Enrique Baron, told a strategic security conference in Barcelona that it was believed that the self-styled Al Qaeda of the Islamic Maghreb – AQMI – could have acquired such arms in Libya or elsewhere during the Arab Spring last year.

***

Commissioner Baron told his audience: “The Al Qaeda of the Islamic Maghreb has acquired and used very powerful conventional arms and probably also has non-conventional arms, basically chemical, as a result of the loss of control of arsenals.”

The most likely place where this could have happened was in Libya during the uprising which overthrew the Gaddafi regime, said Commissioner Baron.

In his position as the head of Spanish National Police intelligence the Commissioner-General works closely with MI6, the CIA and other Western European intelligence services.

Remember, the head of the Libyan rebels admitted that the rebels were largely Al Qaeda.  CNN, theTelegraph,  the Washington Times, and many other mainstream sources confirm that Al Qaeda terrorists from Libya have since flooded into Syria to fight the Assad regime … bringing their arms with them.  And the post-Gaddafi Libyan government is also itself a top funder and arms supplier of the Syrian opposition.  (CNN notes that the CIA may have had a hand in this operation.)

Other Countries

A reporter who has written extensively for Associated PressBBC and National Public Radio reports thatlocals in the area hit by chemical weapons allege that Saudi Arabia supplied the chemicals. And see this.

Bush administration official Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson and British MP George Galloway speculate that Israel or another country may have given chemical weapons to the Syrian rebels.

We don’t know which countries did or didn’t give chemical weapons to the rebels. The point is that there are quite a few opportunities or possibilities.

Evidence of Possession and Use

The above, of course, is simply speculation.  More important is actual evidence of possession and use.

Turkish state newspaper Zaman reported earlier this year (Google translation):

The Turkish General Directorate of Security … seized 2 kg of sarin gas in the city of Adana in the early hours of yesterday morning. The chemical weapons were in the possession of Al Nusra terrorists believed to have been heading for Syria.

Haaretz reported on March 24th, “Jihadists, not Assad, apparently behind reported chemical attack in Syria“.

UN investigator Carla Del Ponte said that there is strong evidence that the rebels used chemical weapons, but that there is not evidence that the government used such weapons.

http://www.infowars.com/yes-the-syrian-rebels-do-have-access-to-chemical-weapons/

Russia Claims Syrian Rebels Used Chemical Weapons

By PETER JAMES SPIELMANN and EDITH M. LEDERER

UNITED NATIONS — Russia’s U.N. ambassador said Tuesday that Russian experts determined that Syrian rebels made sarin nerve gas and used it in a deadly chemical weapon attack outside Aleppo in March.

Ambassador Vitaly Churkin blamed opposition fighters for the March 19 attack in the government-controlled Aleppo suburb of Khan al-Assal, which he said killed 26 people, including 16 military personnel, and injured 86 others.

The rebels have blamed the government for the attack. The U.S. Britain and France have said they have seen no evidence to indicate that the opposition has acquired or used chemical weapons.

In Washington, White House spokesman Jay Carney said “We have yet to see any evidence that backs up the assertion that anybody besides the Syrian government has had the ability to use chemical weapons or has used chemical weapons.”

Churkin told reporters after delivering an 80-page report to Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon that the Assad regime asked Russia, its closest ally, to investigate the attack after a U.N. team of chemical weapons experts was unable to enter the country in a dispute over the probe’s scope.

Acting U.S. Ambassador Rosemary DiCarlo said Syrian President Bashar Assad should now allow U.N. chemical weapons experts into the country to conduct an investigation of the Khan al-Assal incident as well as other allegations of chemical weapons use by the U.S., U.K., and France.

The samples taken from the impact site of the gas-laden projectile were analyzed at a Russian laboratory certified by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, Churkin said.

He said the analysis showed that the unguided Basha’ir-3 rocket that hit Khan al-Assal was not a military-standard chemical weapon.

Churkin said the results indicate it “was not industrially manufactured and was filled with sarin.” He said the samples indicated the sarin and the projectile were produced in makeshift “cottage industry” conditions, and the projectile “is not a standard one for chemical use.”

The absence of chemical stabilizers, which are needed for long-term storage and later use, indicated its “possibly recent production,” Churkin said.

“Therefore, there is every reason to believe that it was the armed opposition fighters who used the chemical weapons in Khan al-Assal,” Churkin said.

“According to information at our disposal,” he added, “the production of `Basha’ir 3′ unguided projectiles was started in February 2013 by the so-called `Basha’ir al-Nasr’ brigade affiliated with the Free Syrian Army.”

On Monday, Syria invited Ake Sellstrom, head of the U.N. fact-finding mission on allegations of chemical weapons use in Syria, and U.N. disarmament chief Angela Kane to visit Damascus for foreign-minister level talks on conducting a probe of just the Khan al-Assal attack.

The Russian ambassador strongly backed the idea, calling it “a promising process” that hopefully will lead to an investigation.

Britain, France and the United States have provided the secretary-general with information on other alleged chemical weapons attacks in Syria. Ban has repeatedly said he wants a broader investigation than just Khan al-Assal.

“We support a thorough investigation of all credible allegations,” Churkin said, but added that Russian experts “were not impressed at all” by the material provided to them by the U.K., U.S. and France.

At the White House, Carney said that Syria’s President “Bashar al-Assad called for a U.N. investigation into the use of chemical weapons and then he blocked the ability of the United Nations to conduct that investigation. The way to answer this question is to allow the United Nations to investigate.”

President Barack Obama’s administration says it has “high confidence” that Syrian President Bashar Assad’s forces have killed up to 150 people with sarin gas.

In a letter to the secretary-general on June 14, then-U.S. Ambassador Susan Rice said the U.S. had determined that sarin was used in the March 19 attack on Khan al-Assal and also in an April 13 attack on the Aleppo neighborhood of Shaykh Maqsud. She said unspecified chemicals, possibly including chemical warfare agents, were used May 14 in an attack on Qasr Abu Samrah and in a May 23 attack on Adra.

The use of a chemical weapon crossed Obama’s “red line” for escalating U.S. involvement in the conflict and prompted the decision to send arms and ammunition to the opposition, not just humanitarian aid and non-lethal material like armored vests and night goggles.

Churkin said Russia plans to provide the 80-page report to the U.S., U.K. and France, and “I hope they find it persuasive.” But he said it will not be made public.

U.N. spokesman Martin Nesirky had no immediate comment on the issue, noting that the Russian ambassador had delivered the “weighty and quite technical” report only minutes earlier. He said the Department of Disarmament Affairs would study it and provide guidance to the secretary-general.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/09/russia-syria-chemical-weapons_n_3568731.html

Is It Possible The Syrian Rebels (Not Assad) Used Chemical Weapons?

by EYDER PERALTA

August 27, 2013

As it lays the groundwork for a potential military strike against Syria, the Obama administration says it is all but certain that President Bashar Assad used chemical weapons against his own people last week.

Secretary of State John Kerry made the case Monday. “We know that the Syrian regime maintains custody of these chemical weapons,” Kerry said. “We know that the Syrian regime has the capacity to do this with rockets. We know that the regime has been determined to clear the opposition from those very places where the attacks took place. And with our own eyes, we have all of us become witnesses.” On Tuesday, White House spokesman Jay Carney reiterated the point, saying that “anyone who approaches this logically” would conclude that Assad is responsible.

As you might expect, Russia, which has been an unyielding Assad ally and holds veto power on the U.N. Security Council, rejected those conclusions, and the Assad regime blamed the rebels.

So, is it possible the United States and its allies are wrong? Is it possible that it was the rebels, or another group within Syria, that launched the attack near Damascus that reportedly left hundreds dead and thousands more injured?

“I have been asking myself the same question ever since it happened, because it was difficult to find a rationale [for an Assad-led attack],” says Gwyn Winfield, the editorial director of CBRNe World, a magazine that covers biological and chemical weapons for the industry.

“[A rebel attack] is feasible, but not particularly likely,” said Winfield.

What Winfield means is that this seems like a lose-lose situation for Assad. A chemical attack by the regime would seem to bolster the opposition, because it could mean an international intervention. As for the rebels, there are huge questions about whether they could have pulled off such an attack.

Back in 2002, research conducted by George Lopez, a professor of peace studies at the University of Notre Dame, cast doubt on the presence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. In this situation, Lopez rejects the notion that it was the Syrian rebels who used chemical weapons.

Lopez and Winfield agree that the rebels may have the motivation to use chemical weapons.

“This anarchic, killing stalemate” could motivate anyone, Winfield says, but such a scenario just doesn’t make sense.

For one thing, the alleged chemical attack happened in the Ghouta region of Damascus. It is controlled by the rebels, and civilians in the area sympathize with the rebels.

“The smart thing [for the rebels] would be for you to aim for barracks and maime/kill a significant few hundred soldiers as the best chance for reverberations that played to your advantage,” said Lopez. “This was not done.”

It seems clear, Lopez says,”that some armed unit foot soldiers were sent in by Assad some time after the attack in limited numbers. That achieved the desired effect of making the case that since Assad soldiers were hit, the weapons came from the ‘terrorists;’ but these were exemplars, too few to make a strategic difference for the rebels.”

In making the case against Assad, the U.S. has said it is his forces who have the capabilities to launch such an attack and that the rebels do not.

An August 20 report by the Congressional Research Service (pdf) says that Syria has had a vast stockpile of chemical weapons since the early 1980s and perhaps as far back as 1973. Not only that, but the military was trained by the Soviets and possesses the delivery methods — scud missiles and batteries of rocket launchers — that could be used to “rapidly achieve lethal doses of non-persistent agents in a concentrated area.”

The report goes on to explain that U.S. officials “have unanimously stated that the weapons stockpiles are secure.”

Winfield maintains that the Free Syrian Army has the experience and perhaps even the launching systems to perpetrate such an attack. But that would mean that U.S. officials, and Assad himself, were wrong when they said the chemical stockpiles were secure.

“If [the rebels] have overrun an arms dump which had some of the agent, if a defector brought a limited amount with him, then it would explain why some of the signs and symptoms showed less toxicity than we expected,” Winfield said. “That is a lot of ‘ifs,’ though.”

Lopez concurs: “Western intelligence has been standing on its head to monitor all intel about those groups hostile to the West and what they have in their weapons access and supply. The amount of gas agents seemingly used was way beyond what a clandestine group could mix and develop without detection. And it is unclear they would have the expertise to mix the agents.

“Is it possible that a rebel group overran a storage facility of the government and captured some shells that were ready to be activated and then did so?” Lopez says. “Yes, but it would have had to have been a very large seizure preceded by a big battle between Assad top teams and rebels. It could not have happened without inside/outside knowledge.”

All of that said, note that the U.S. has qualified every statement it has made about the situation.Kerry said it is “undeniable” that chemical weapons had been used in Syria and he set out a case against Assad without directly blaming the regime for the attack.

During his daily press briefing Tuesday, Carney said: “There is also very little doubt, and should be no doubt for anyone who approaches this logically, that the Syrian regime is responsible for the use of chemical weapons on August 21st outside of Damascus.”

Jean Pascal Zanders, who worked for the European Union Institute for Security Studies from 2008 to 2013 and concentrated on the non-proliferation of chemical weapons says until the U.N. investigative team presents its report, “we need to keep our minds open that the events of last Wednesday could in whole or partially have alternative explanations.”

“In fact, we – the public – know very little beyond the observation of outward symptoms of asphyxiation and possible exposure to neurotoxicants, despite the mass of images and film footage,” Zanders added. “For the West’s credibility, I think that governments should await the results of the U.N. investigation.”

http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2013/08/27/216172145/is-it-possible-the-syrian-rebels-not-assad-used-chemical-weapons

Evidence: Syrian Rebels used Chemical Weapons (not Assad)

by  on August 27, 2013 in BlogGeneral
By Walid Shoebat and Ben Barrack

Recent news of a chemical weapons attack in Syria smacks of desperation. The question comes down to who is most desperate right now, the Assad regime or the Muslim Brotherhood rebels? Consider that since June, Assad’s forces have been winning. According to a CBS News report from last month, victories for the rebels had become “increasingly rare” and that the Muslim Brotherhood-backed opposition fighters were sustaining “some of their heaviest losses” near Damascus.

Saudi Chemicals in hands of Syrian Rebels

Saudi Chemicals in hands of Syrian Rebels

The New York Times echoed this sentiment, even saying that before gaining the upper hand, concerns were that Assad would use chemical weapons; he did not.

In fact, even before Assad’s forces gained the momentum, a UN official reportedly found evidence of rebels using chemical weapons but no evidence Assad’s regime did. This, from a Washington Times article by Shaun Waterman dated May 6, 2013:

Testimony from victims strongly suggests it was the rebels, not the Syrian government, that used Sarin nerve gas during a recent incident in the revolution-wracked nation, a senior U.N. diplomat said Monday.

Carla del Ponte, a member of the U.N. Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Syria, told Swiss TV there were “strong, concrete suspicions but not yet incontrovertible proof,” that rebels seeking to oust Syrian strongman Bashar al-Assad had used the nerve agent.

But she said her panel had not yet seen any evidence of Syrian government forces using chemical weapons, according to the BBC, but she added that more investigation was needed. {emphasis ours}

Today, while the rebels are more desperate than they were at the time of that article, evidence of rebels using chemical weapons is available; evidence Assad’s regime has used them is not.

Waterman wrote…

Rebel Free Syrian Army spokesman Louay Almokdad denied that rebels had use chemical weapons.

That doesn’t square with a video uploaded on August 23, 2013, in which Free Syrian operatives threatened to launch chemical weapons:

A day later, on August 24th, a video was uploaded and featured on facebook that purports to show Syrian rebels loading what very well may be a rocket armed with some sort of chemical agent. The tip of the rocket is armed with a light blue tank or canister that very well contains a nerve agent. At the end of this video, two separate launches of these rockets can be seen:

This video from a Syrian TV news report claims to show chemicals (some of labels on these chemicals are in English) and weapons seized by the Syrian government in the rebel stronghold of Jobar. Note at the :10 mark a label that reads:

“Saudi Factory for Chlorine and Alkalies”

In this video, two Syrian rebels (Muslim Brotherhood gang) can be heard coordinating an attack on a nearby building. As smoke billows a short distance from the building, a rebel on the ground can be heard directing someone – presumably at the source of the launch – to change his direction. At that point, the rebel from the launch point can be heard talking about using sarin gas next:

In this video of a Russia Today news report originally broadcast on or before June 16, 2013, testimony from a United Nations panel is reported to demonstrate that rebel groups – not the Assad regime – was responsible for the use of chemical weapons in general, Sarin gas in particular, which backs up the claims in the previous video. Those who attempt to discredit the report below because it is from Russia Today should have difficulty doing so when factoring in rebels above talking about using sarin gas:

UN Panel implicates Syrian Rebels in Chemical weapons attacks

It’s significant to consider that the rebels were reportedly using chemical weapons at a time when Assad was more desperate than he is now. Again, why would Assad use chemical weapons now and not then? Who is more desperate at this point in the conflict?

The answer is, the Muslim Brotherhood rebels, who have no problem killing themselves (or their own) if the cause of Islam is moved forward.

Even CNN International, which has typically been quick to report favorably for the Muslim Brotherhood rebels, is hedging its bets lately, when it comes to who is responsible for the attack. Here is a video report from Frederik Pleitgen in which he leaves the possibility open that the rebels may have perpetrated or staged the attack:

Back in March, we chronicled evidence of chemical weapons being used by the Syrian rebels. Unfortunately, since google terminated Theodore’s YouTube account, most of the videos in that post have been deleted and have been more than a little difficult to find.

Running concurrent with the tide that turned in Assad’s favor a few months ago was another defeat for the Muslim Brotherhood – in Egypt. That defeat has been taking place ever since Mohammed Mursi was ousted on July 3rd. So why would Assad use chemical weapons now and not months ago, when his situation was much more precarious?

As the Associated Press was reporting that the U.S. is moving ships closer to Syria in response to the alleged chemical weapons attack, Reuters reported that Assad’s army found chemical weapons in tunnels that had been used by the rebels, according to Syrian state television.

Oxford University historian Mark Almond granted Russia Today an interview and explained both why western nations are so willing to blame Assad and why rebels would have a motive to murder their own people. In response to a question about why the U.S., the U.K., and France appear so eager to blame Assad, Almond said:

“Western governments… want to say ‘Gotcha’. They have been demanding the fall of Assad for more than two-and-a-half years now and it has become increasingly frustrating that his regime has shown much more resilience than they had expected, despite the resources that they and the Gulf Kingdoms have thrown into the war on the other side.

It is also like a distraction from the embarrassment of Egypt, where we see the European and the US governments basically using weasel words to avoid any kind of condemnation of a massacre in the streets of Cairo. So there are both the specifics of Syria and the context of what is going on elsewhere in the Arab world, especially in Egypt.”

Almond gives a very interesting answer to the question about why the rebels would intentionally gas their own people:

“We do have some very radical groups who would no doubt say, as they have when they have been challenged about using suicide bombers, killing innocent people, that God will recognize his own when the dead die, that he will save for heaven the justified victims and just send to hell the wicked supporters of Assad. So it is not impossible that somebody has staged this.

Consider that a man many of the Syrian rebels show the utmost of reverence for is the Muslim Brotherhood’s spiritual leader, Yusuf Al-Qaradawi. When writing about a Muslim tactic known asMuruna, Qaradawi expressed when it is acceptable for Muslims to kill fellow Muslims:

“…killing Muslims whom the unbelievers use as shields… leaving these unbelievers is a danger to the Muslims, so it is permissible to kill these unbelievers even if Muslims are killed with them in the process.” – The Case FOR Islamophobia, p. 56

Of course, if the rebels are desperate enough, Muruna could sanction the murder of their own people if it meant bearing false witness and a blood libel that would engage external forces that want Assad removed. As things stand today, the rebels are more desperate than is the Assad regime.

Specific examples include the staged death of twelve year-old Muhammad Al-Dura by Palestinians. Whether the child was used as a prop in a Palestinian blood-libel or was actually killed, he was clearly put in danger by Palestinians who shot at him as the news cameras rolled for a false report that aired on France 2. They wanted to blame the Israelis.

Earlier this month in Egypt, Muslim Brotherhood supporters were caught behaving as victims of oppression at the hands of the military. They might have gotten away with it if nothing but still shots were taken. Unfortunately for these miscreants, video was recorded that revealed a staged, mass display of despicable behavior.

Syria’s Muslim Brotherhood rebels would never get away with launching chemical weapons and taking credit for it. They’d have to do so while blaming Assad. It’s straight out of the Nazi playbook and a violation of two major commandments – Thou shalt not murder and thou shalt not bear false witness. However, the Muslim Brotherhood, as usual, provides more evil spin. It bears false witness while committing murder in order to push an agenda.

Lying, bearing false witness, blood libel, and murder.

Yeah, that smells like the Brotherhood.

**UPDATE at 8:40am EST on August 31, 2013**
Associated Press reporter Dale Gavlak reports in MintPress news that firsthand accounts indicate that the Chemical weapons attack was the result of the rebels’ mishandling of them. According to Gavlak, the weapons came from Saudi Arabia’s Prince Bandar bin Sultan and were given to rebels who did not know what the weapons were or how to store them, nor were they trained how to use them. If these accounts are correct, the Obama administration – along with more than a handful of Republican congressmen – may be complicit in a blood libel.

http://shoebat.com/2013/08/27/evidence-syrian-rebels-used-chemical-weapons-not-assad/]

First Syria rebels armed and trained by CIA ‘on way to battlefield’

The first cell of Syrian rebels trained and armed by the CIA is making its way to the battlefield, President Barack Obama has reportedly told senators.

The US announced in June that it would send light arms to the rebels but refused to provide anti-aircraft missiles and other heavy weapons.<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />

The US announced in June that it would send light arms to the rebels but refused to provide anti-aircraft missiles and other heavy weapons.  Photo: JIM WATSON/AFP

Raf Sanchez in Washington

3:15PM BST 03 Sep 2013

During a meeting at the White House, the president assured Senator John McCain that after months of delay the US was meeting its commitment to back moderate elements of the opposition.

Mr Obama said that a 50-man cell, believed to have been trained by US special forces in Jordan, was making its way across the border into Syria, according to the New York Times.

The deployment of the rebel unit seems to be the first tangible measure of support since Mr Obama announced in June that the US would begin providing the opposition with small arms.

Congressional opposition delayed the plan for several weeks and rebel commanders publicly complained the US was still doing nothing to match the Russian-made firepower of the Assad regime.

Mr McCain has been a chief critic of the White House’s reluctance to become involved in Syria and has long demanded that Mr Obama provide the rebels with arms needed to overthrow the regime.

He and Senator Lindsey Graham, a fellow Republican foreign policy hawk, emerged from the Oval Office meeting on Monday cautiously optimistic that Mr Obama would step up support for the rebels.

“There seems to be emerging from this administration a pretty solid plan to upgrade the opposition,” Mr Graham said.

He added that he hoped the opposition would be given “a chance to speak directly to the American people” to counter US fears that they were dominated by al-Qaeda sympathisers.

“They’re not trying to replace one dictator, Assad, who has been brutal… to only have al-Qaeda run Syria,” Mr Graham said.

The US announced in June, following the first allegations the Assad regime had used chemical weapons, that it would send light arms to the rebels but refused to provide anti-aircraft missiles and other heavy weapons.

American concerns were born partly out of the experience of Afghanistan in the 1980s, when CIA weapons given to the anti-Russian mujahideen were later used by the Taliban.

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