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Friday, August 14, 2015

Follow up on Hillary, ISIS and more

I thought that the preceding post would attract attention. ISIS and chemical weapons: Who wouldn't be interested in that?

Surprise: Nobody cares. At least, nobody living outside of northern Iraq.

Maybe people are simply tired of reading about the wars in that region. An understandable reaction, that: The situation in the Middle East is usually grim and hope-resistant. Still, I urge you to read this brilliant Moon of Alabama post, which analyzes the latest made-in-America mythologizing about the Syrian war. MoA's "B" (not the same "b" who occasionally comments on this humble blog) is at the top of his game here. (Is B a he? I think so...)

I would also like to take another brief look at the domestic story that everyone seems to think is Big News. If you read nothing else about the Hillary Clinton email pseudoscandal, check out this important TalkLeft analysis. BigTentDemocrat made the some of the same points I had hoped to make, but he did a much better job of it than I would have.

Remember those golly-gee Top Seekrit emails which we're supposed to think are the most important leaks ever? The ones that have rightwingers screaming that Hillary Clinton is the new Kim Philby? Well, the most controversial of those emails is a discussion of a published news story about -- wait for it -- drones.

Drones are classified, right? Therefore, if you talk about drones, you are, in essence, discussing classified information. This is true even if you are chatting about that drone story in yesterday's Washington Post.

By that standard, this blog discusses classified topics nearly every day. So do many other blogs.

BTD refers to this AP story:
The officials who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity work in intelligence and other agencies. They wouldn't detail the contents of the emails because of ongoing questions about classification level. Clinton did not transmit the sensitive information herself, they said, and nothing in the emails she received makes clear reference to communications intercepts, confidential intelligence methods or any other form of sensitive sourcing.
To which BTD responds:
Let's review this again - (1) Clinton did not transmit the sensitive information herself and (2) nothing in the emails she received makes clear reference to communications intercepts, confidential intelligence methods or any other form of sensitive sourcing.

Frankly, this puts Clinton completely in the clear. This story SHOULD be over as far as Hillary is concerned.
Now let's turn to the latest NYT story about that email server.
Specifically, the inspector general told members of Congress that two emails should have been classified as top secret...
"Should have been." Meaning they weren't. Meaning that the classification was retroactive. Meaning that Hillary did nothing wrong.

Is the email scandal is a non-story? No. There is a story here, and it concerns our news media. Why do so many journalists fall for every single ginned-up anti-Clinton story that the Republicans concoct? Throughout the 1990s, newsfolk continually presented right-wing propaganda points as The Real Shit. They did this day after day, week after week, year after year. They still do it.

American journalism has crossed the line separating gullibility from culpability.

Let me once again state: There are legit reasons to be unenthusiastic about Hillary's candidacy. I didn't like much of what she did as SoS, and I still think that she should not have taken the gig. Domestic policy is her strength -- and by "her strength," I mean that's the area where she doesn't make me want to scream at my computer monitor every time she opens her mouth.
Comments:
Well I care about the multiple wars we are fomenting. I just can't get here everyday. ;) Even if Turkey isn't responsible (although that guy would kill everybody to be in charge), I remember something from back then. It may have been MofA, but can't remember. Anyway, if suggested that in fact that Syria had destroyed its weapons, one of the cities the may have still had some of the precursor ingredients was in fact under the control of one of our rebel groups.
It would have been the height of folly for Assad to use them at the time, and smelled like a false flag from day one.

 
Joseph,
I don't think that readers are tired of wars in the middle east or they don't care about "Daesh". The situation in the middle east is very confusing ( by design) and news reports are very tongue in cheek (also by design).
Your discussions and deductions here are as good as any out there but it still leaves one wondering how many angles are left unexplored.
It is a lot to digest.
M
 
Tom, M...the truth is, this blog would have a lot more readers if it stayed focused on domestic issues. But war is war. The wars in Syria and Ukraine are two problems which carry a big "Made-in-USA" sticker. So bloggers should force readers to pay attention.

My point was, it is ridiculous for this administration to point to that Human Rights Watch report as "proof" that the anti-Assad forces could not have acquired chemical weapons in 2013 -- even as they argue that ISIS possesses such weapons now. The illogic of this argument is obvious, and if you look carefully at way the attack on the Kurds has been covered, the news management seems obvious and heavyhanded.

I mean, we might as well have an official department of censorship. How would the results be any different?

The obvious possibility is that Hersh was right all along: ISIS (in its germinal form) got the weapons from Turkey in 2013. If ISIS has been resupplied more recently, then Turkey is once again the likeliest supplier.

That said, there were indeed reports of the rebels taking arms caches in 2013 which may have included chemical weapons stores.

There's another possibility: Libya. The Libyans had some 23 million tons of mustard gas. This stuff was reported to have been destroyed last year, but it was reported that Libyan chemical weapons were passed on to Al Qaeda in 2012 at the time of the Libyan revolution.

Remember what Hersh said about the REAL Benghazi story...?
 
Tom, M...the truth is, this blog would have a lot more readers if it stayed focused on domestic issues. But war is war. The wars in Syria and Ukraine are two problems which carry a big "Made-in-USA" sticker. So bloggers should force readers to pay attention.

My point was this: It is ridiculous for this administration to point to that Human Rights Watch report as "proof" that the anti-Assad forces could not have acquired chemical weapons in 2013 -- even as they argue that ISIS possesses such weapons now. The illogic of this argument is obvious. If you look carefully at the way the attack on the Kurds has been covered, the news management seems obvious and heavyhanded.

We might as well have an official department of censorship. How would the results be any different?

The obvious possibility is that Hersh was right all along: ISIS (in its germinal form) got the weapons from Turkey in 2013. If ISIS has been resupplied more recently, then Turkey is once again the likeliest supplier.

That said, there were indeed reports of the rebels taking arms caches in 2013 which may have included chemical weapons stores.

There's another possibility: Libya. The Libyans had some 23 million tons of mustard gas. This stuff was reported to have been destroyed last year, but it was reported that Libyan chemical weapons were passed on to Al Qaeda in 2012 at the time of the Libyan revolution.

Remember what Hersh said about the REAL Benghazi story...?
 
I was talking to someone from Syria. They live in the US now. Most of her family were killed by Assad. She was tallying for me how this uncle,brother etc was killed. Then she said her cousin who still a groom for a few month and his pregnant wife were gassed by Assad. And I asked if she was sure it was Assad not someone else she we are very sure it was him. So in the ME you can never be sure.
 
Glenn Beck's site, The Blaze, has the sickest, angriest, women hating posters on the net in my opinion. Beck should be ashamed for allowing it.
 
"We might as well have an official department of censorship."

As I expect you know already, one of the evil beauties of our nearly-perfected form of oligarchy is that it does not need an official department of censorship. The media hacks know what to avoid saying in order to keep their jobs.
 
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