Posts Tagged ‘strategy’

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Joe Giambrone

This opinion piece will contain speculation or “conspiracy theory,” and so you can move on if you don’t like that sort of thing…

I’m not claiming that Iran fired any missiles at the Ukrainian passenger plane; that’s the New York Times and Bellingcat. But, assuming their video shows unaltered footage of Iranian anti-aircraft SAMs shooting down Ukraine Flight 752, then we must ask the obvious question: WHY?

The very first possible reason screams out, and that is that Iran must have thought it was an attacking warplane over Tehran, and with only moments to decide, they shot quickly. But, why would the Iranian military think that a civilian plane was an attacking warplane? That is the big question in this possible scenario, and it represents a major threat to civil aviation worldwide.

Other civilian airliners around the Middle East have been put at risk recently in the following way. In December, 2018, Russia accused Israel of using civilian airliners as cover for their attacking warplanes:

“The provocative actions of the Israeli air force … directly threatened two airliners,” Russian defence ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said in a statement.

In another incident, Israeli planes attacked Syrian ground targets in a way that the Russians said caused Syria’s air defense missiles to strike a Russian surveillance plane that was in the same area. This air defense response killed fifteen Russian airmen.

“The [Russian] spokesman accused Israeli pilots of “using the Russian airplane as a cover”, putting it “in the line of fire coming from Syrian air defence systems”.

These two precedents establish that military strategists are always looking for ways to game the enemy into using his anti-aircraft missiles against him, so to speak. Getting the enemy to shoot down the wrong plane is a standard military ploy, and perhaps a war crime.

Civilian planes are identified by their radio signatures. They continually broadcast data identifying them as friendly, or, in the case of military aircraft, they can turn off transponder signals and be unknown—giving away as little information to the enemy as possible.

Radio jamming has been around since the second World War. It is not impossible that the Ukraine jet was targeted for some sort of radio jamming in order to confuse the Iranians into thinking it was an attacking enemy warplane and quickly shooting it down. The incident would clearly be blamed on Iran alone, as the “conspiracy theory” is nearly impossible to prove, and the Iranians aren’t going to admit to shooting missiles at all, just as they have denied the use of missiles ever since the incident occurred.

This scenario seems plausible enough. While pundits allude to Iran making a “mistake,” this absolves any conspirators who may have engaged in deliberate radio jamming in order to bait the Iranians into shooting down the wrong plane. The propaganda value of casting the Iranians as monsters, and also angering Ukrainians, Canadians, and other nations which had civilians on board, are clear motives to inspire such a crime.

Lastly, it makes no sense that Iran would warn the US about its missile launches hours in advance in order to avoid casualties, while deliberately shooting down a plane load of innocent civilians on the same day.

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Trump is copying Hitler’s early rhetoric and policies in 20 different ways

 

Some of us might file this under: “No shit, Sherlock.”

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Trump and Kavanaugh are the real victims, don’t you know? 

I just had a disgusting bout with a real-world person, over Facebook. Dr. Ford is a “bitch” who definitely “lied” in a Democrat plot to deny Republicans a court seat.

That’s the talking point going around.

When you bring up a dozen perjuries under oath (1, 2), that’s ignored. When you bring up 2,400 law professors protesting Kavanaugh, that’s ignored.

Also ignored is the dean of Yale law school, Kavanaugh’s old haunt, who said:

“[Kavanaugh’s] very presence will undermine the court’s claim to legitimacy; it will damage the nation’s commitment to the rule of law. It will be an American tragedy.”

The right-wing smear machine has also fabricated completely unsourced hit pieces against Dr. Ford. It’s all about Dr. Ford and nothing about Kavanaugh’s total unfitness for the position.

Obama’s Supreme Court pick, Merrick Garland, was actually denied a seat by an actual Republican plot in the Senate to refuse to confirm him under any circumstances. These ignorant bobbing heads are beyond hypocrisy since they don’t know enough about any of the subjects to contradict themselves knowingly.

Now they claim Kavanaugh is the victim of “liberal” death threats. Meanwhile, Dr. Ford had to move out of her house for actual death threats. Republicans are through-the-looking-glass, behaving like a Brown Shirt mob at every level from Trump on down. They are completely impervious to facts and logic, and they are, indeed, proudly armed and dangerous.

I’m not a big fan of Trevor Noah, but this observation on Republican weaponizing of “victimhood” should send chills down your spine. It is the Nazi game plan. White nationalists are the victims in Nazi ideology, and they’re defending their race, nation, state, values, or what have you, as they perpetrate any number of atrocities against outsiders.

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Babies in cages were no ‘mistake’ by Trump but test-marketing for barbarism

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Get it here:

A Global Security System: An Alternative to War — 2017 Edition Now Available

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by David Pear

 

“if you have nukes, never give them up–if you don’t have them, get them”. —Dan Coats, Director of National Intelligence.

Those were the words of President Trump’s Director of National Intelligence, about the lessons taught from the U.S. destruction of Libya and the assassination of Muammar Gaddafi.

That is why North Korea is a nuclear power. That is the reality and eventually the U.S. will have to accept “Mutually Assured Madness“. The U.S. has nobody to blame for its self-inflected wounds. It is called Blowback.

If there is any comfort in living with a nuclear armed North Korea, then be thankful that it is not even close to the dangers of the Cold War. The propaganda mill and the mainstream media greatly exaggerate the US national security risk to the American people, and it is for their own greedy self-interest to spread panic and paranoia among the American people.

If Kim Jong-un wanted to kill Americans out of insane hatred, he has that capability now with conventional weapons. There are over a quarter of a million American citizens living in Seoul, 100 miles from Pyongyang. Kim Jong-un has not attacked Seoul to kill Americans because he is not insane or suicidal, and that is according to experts on North Korea such as Dan Coats and Donald Gregg, and others.

Forget the propaganda, it is nonsense aimed at selling extremely expensive Thermal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missiles and further encircle and threaten China and Russia . THAAD’s installed in South Korea at a cost of $1 billion are ineffective and useless against North Korean missiles in the early stage of launching. Professor of Government and Public Policy Lawrence, and former Chief of Staff for Secretary of State Colin Powell has spoken in interviews extensively on this subject. Wilkerson’s last positions in government were as Secretary of State Colin Powell’s Chief of Staff (2002-05),

It is the U.S. that is the most dangerous country and threat to the world, not North Korea. The U.S. has beaten its own world record as a serial mass murderer of the 21stcentury. That does not go unnoticed by small vulnerable countries, which is the kind that the U.S. likes to destroy for its own sick reasons. For North Korea to fear the U.S. is reality. To want a nuclear deterrent is sanity.

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The Insufferably Boring Left

Joe Giambrone
Love him or hate him, Swamp Thing sure does make a lot of noise. One badly completed Tweet sends the world into a frenzy for days, #covfefe.

The Left, not so much. Unless it’s Kathy Griffin being excoriated for daring to hold up a puppet, and that’s largely the result of the right’s echo chamber of hatred. They smelled blood in the water, and by the end of the day a dozen highly original memes showed her chopping off her own head. Ted Nugent’s death threats against Obama received little play, despite his chumming it up inside the Oval Office with Swampy the Victim.

The bread and butter Left propagandists, churning out their daily diatribes, are far less compelling though. Those with microphones and unlimited podcast time are the worst offenders. It goes on and on and on, and I can’t imagine average shlubs enduring more than a couple of minutes. That’s all I can take, and I already agree.

The Left just doesn’t get how to make their messages palatable, and they’re losing–with a few notable exceptions. Robert Reich used to produce short videos featuring a white board that were usually a bit too long, but more impactful than most. Jimmy Dore fills time, but usually he’s got better things to say and imbues it with some humor. A number of these Left echo chambers send out images of pointedly cogent Tweets, and these pithy memes cut through the noise.

Other Young Turks shows are wastelands of endless half-assed babble, and no expertise on display. With the 2016 chaos more progressives started streaming video, and with zero production value or show conceptualization, these are frankly unwatchable. Prior to those, the Greens could usually be found delivering long-winded speeches and essentially saying the same things, the same phrases, for hours. It turns people off to politics when even the opposition you like makes it unbearable to sit through. There’s no entertainment value, and that’s the problem.

Those who would lead the revolution against the right need to take cues on how to expand into the mainstream. It’s not enough to preach to the choir, no matter how ego-fulfilling it may seem. The great blob in the center is a tough audience with no patience, infinite choices at their fingertips, and they need to be attracted, sold on a concept, and released back into the wild before it becomes burdensome.

Filling time is not going to win them over. The luxury of the infinite podcast has been a great negative, a dead end, as it generally turns people off to podcasts and videocasts. These offer very little useful information per unit of time. There isn’t enough there to justify the time commitment. Time is money, or even more valuable. Time is life itself: treat it that way.

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Norman Solomon:

How the Russia Spin Got So Much Torque

A lavishly-funded example is the “Moscow Project,” a mega-spin effort that surfaced in midwinter as a project of the Center for American Progress Action Fund. It’s led by Neera Tanden, a self-described “loyal solider” for Clinton who also runs the Center for American Progress (where she succeeded Podesta as president). The Center’s board includes several billionaires.

…Let’s freeze-frame how that sentence begins: “Given Trump’s obedience to Vladimir Putin.” It’s a jaw-dropping claim; a preposterous smear.

Echoes of such tactics can be heard from many Democrats in Congress and from allied media. Along the way, no outlet has been more in sync than MSNBC, and no one on the network has been more promotional of the Russia-runs-Trump meme than Rachel Maddow, tirelessly promoting the line and sometimes connecting dots in Glenn Beck fashion to the point of journalistic malpractice.

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A Strategy to Grow

Joe Giambrone

I’ve written previously about a three-pronged strategy to increase numbers by creating tools to empower the base. Without these numbers the party will remain stagnated and ineffectual. That is the project. That is the task at hand.

My suggestions related to the US Green Party, but as Abby Martin pointed out to me, future change may need to come from another party altogether. The organizing principles are the same, to establish a grassroots party online, which is relatively cheap, efficient, and able to grow exponentially as needed.

While the current President received 63 million votes last November, the Korean Youtube music video Gangnam Style has “been viewed over 2.75 billion times.” Who could have predicted that before it happened?

Jill Stein appeared on many television screens in 2016, but one message was missing from most of her appearances:

Go and Register with the Green Party

Presidential campaigns focus on personalities and on transitory issues, but the simple call to recruit new people gets lost in the noise. That is a strategic blunder. All publicity should include a call to recruit the viewers.

A second important point to make is that registering does not mean one has to vote that way. It’s not mandatory, but it does send a message to the competing parties when one party’s affiliation grows (or conversely shrinks). This act is arguably as important as voting because it signals to the political class, to the ruling class, what America currently cares about.

The existing national Green Party infrastructure must put all of its attention and all of its resources toward building a viable party, which means millions—and then tens of millions—of new Greens. This goal is so obvious and vital that it seems to be routinely overlooked.

How to Drum Up New Members?

Before moving forward, it is imperative to study the competition. Here are three highly relevant websites:

https://www.gop.com
https://democrats.org
https://go.berniesanders.com

These should be mined for ideas, as they are well-designed and professional, and they appear to be winning the race.

But grassroots alternatives do not come with money, or checkbook activism, and so important differences must be acknowledged in terms of available resources. The only resource, which a grassroots movement can bank on today, is people power. Committed members are the strength of the party, but commitment without the tools to succeed is futile. This is already proven in election after election defeat.

Building Tools to Compete

Three tools need immediate implementation:

1. A landing page (much like the three websites listed above) will collect email addresses and names and help new people register with the party and join a community to leverage their efforts. People want to help, and they should be assisted. The website must aid with networking and provide information and high-quality content for the new members to share easily with their own circles.

2. A message forum can allow the entire party to communicate with itself in local groups, and additionally organized by issues and campaigns. In order to be effective the party must be organized in some kind of cohesive way. It is not today. A message board forum is a cheap, easy, proven mechanism for achieving this.

3. A media library is vital in today’s environment of flowing video, audio and images. It’s not enough to type text. Greens need the audio-visual content of the Party at their fingertips in order to create new content, be that videos, audio podcasts, graphic memes, or articles. The Party should be putting its best face forward and archiving all the quality imagery and other content that sells the Party to strangers.

Further, the landing page can be as bold as a complete reinvention and makeover of the Party: Green Party 2.0, for example. I lean toward the Greens because they have ballot access across the country—a huge hurdle overcome—as well as local-level victories to cite.

These three prongs of the larger strategy to recruit millions are easy to digest, logical, and bullet-proof. The only problem I see is that they are not being implemented. We cannot wait for a savior to come along some day but must act to defend our interests today by organizing.

The failure to offer viable progressive alternatives has allowed the United States to drift rightward, and now toward open fascism. Only by creating a movement that moves will we reverse this pendulum.

As the current regime destroys the last century’s progress, people will be motivated to resist. They need a place to resist, a real resistance that will not sell them out to the next corporatist warmonger who comes along from the DNC.

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http://www.joegiambrone.us

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Green Carnage

JOE GIAMBRONE

Does the Green Party exist in the U.S. today?

After a shockingly ineffectual performance on Election Day 2016, the reality should be sinking in over at Green central. In a different context heads would roll. New blood would move in, new strategies the only issue, the only concern, the wake-up call to end all wake-up calls. The US Green Party faces an existential crisis today. This is the fork in the road. The current organization has failed spectacularly (yet again). Forget 5%, they couldn’t reach one and a half.

We cannot fault Jill Stein, who did the best she could and campaigned tirelessly. She appeared on more television screens than any other US Green in history, and yet votes did not materialize. One-percent stunts are simply not worth the effort, and they are not changing the world.

In 2011 I tried to alert the Party (repeatedly) that they were stuck in a failed cycle that needed drastic changes in order to succeed. The main points of my strategy proposal were as follows.

Objective

The only goal is to recruit tens of millions of Americans into the Green Party, to register them “Green,” and thus to build a credible alternative that Americans may trust to not be a “wasted vote.”

This requires a national effort, not ad-hoc state by state randomness. Nor city by city, nor Facebook group nor Twitter account. This mishmosh of random efforts is completely uncoordinated and redundant. Efforts are limited and wasted, and the advantages of the digital world are not exploited to their fullest potentials.

In any accounting of strengths, weaknesses, and available resources, we must be realistic. Greens are not the party of money, but of people power. Motivated members: their time and labor are the main available resources, not expensive TV commercials.

When I wrote the original document I had been a Green for over a decade, and since I’d moved to Northern California and re-registered the Party had not contacted me at all. I had nothing to do, no interaction, no initiatives to join in: nothing. No mojo. Plus Northern California is where the party supposedly began!

Greens are sitting around with nothing to do. That’s not how you build a party. You build a party by recruiting new members, and getting them to recruit new members, and so on, and so on, and so on. That should be the main concern of the national party structure, the only real concern. They should be providing tools to their own members to empower and assist them to organize and communicate with one another.

Infrastructure

The party must immediately create infrastructure to help its own members organize.

1. A place to communicate, share ideas and to link up, such as a message board forum. Why this doesn’t exist already is beyond belief. Are you a party or a collection of whoevers, whenevers?

2. A media library to store photos, videos, audio, and text. There is no central depository for people to take the raw materials and build new projects. This ignoring of the modern age and its digital offerings is another fumble by a party that doesn’t seem to care if it loses.

3. A landing page to send new people in order to convince them to register Green. Take five minutes and actually put together a professional presentation to attract independents and disgruntled Democrats and talk to them.

Those are the bare minimum requirements for the party to actually exist. It does not exist at this juncture, sorry.

Dependable places for people to use and to build will demonstrate that the party is here and is active all year long, all the time.

Currently, it is mostly random and centered around a star presidential run. In 2011, when I first wrote the proposal, the Green websites were even more crude and off-putting. Some improvements have come around, but not the centers of activity that would provide a place for members to interact and spread important information virally among them: at the local level, the regional, and national levels. Good ideas are not being passed on to those who need them most because of disorganization. This hobbles the people you expect to be building the party and to recruit new members.

GP members are left to flounder in random Facebook or Twitter encounters. No central hub can be identified to check for news, media and initiatives to participate in. Without a centralized library, good content it is quickly forgotten and lost.

Now an anecdote to demonstrate the point. Over the past few months in a ‘Jill Stein Activists’ group on Facebook I began making graphic memes to promote her and the party, as well as to knock the competition. I made at least 47 images (gallery), and they were passed on by hundreds of people, very popular in fact, some of the most active content going around there.

Four days before the election I was suddenly kicked out of the group. No explanation. No rhyme nor reason. Was it related to an argument over the pervasive fake “news” (disinformation) littering the group? Probably.

So that was that. I’m out. The most productive member of the group tossed out without explanation. These groups are random, run by whomever at their own personal whims, and the Green Party has no oversight, investment, nor commitment to fairness or procedures.

That’s not a serious party in my book. Those are junior high school shenanigans masquerading.

The party insists on trying to compete in the national leagues, but continues to play in the Pee Wee league. In 2016 they still haven’t stepped up and invested in their own members and given them… anything that I can see.
Maybe some of its members will simply cease investing time and sweat in them?

Joe Giambrone

http://www.joegiambrone.us

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Noam Chomsky is a slippery character.

1. Chomsky just now admits, after five years of mass murder:

“[stopping weapons] to the monstrous ISIS, which has been getting support tacitly through Turkey, through—to the al-Nusra Front, which is hardly different, has just the—the al-Qaeda affiliate, technically broke from it, but actually the al-Qaeda affiliate, which is now planning its own—some sort of emirate, getting arms from our allies, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

2. Previously he was spinning the situation differently.

What changed? Is he reading my pieces? Worried about his loss of credibility and his legacy?

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