U.S. Attack on Syria Without U.N. Approval is a War Crime: Chomsky

(Noam Chomsky says the exact same thing that I said. Congressional approval means bunk. )

Ryan Grim, Huffington Post

A U.S.-led attack on Syria without United Nations support would be a war crime regardless of congressional approval, Noam Chomsky, the antiwar activist and author, said in response to President Barack Obama’s announcement that he would seek Hill approval.

“As international support for Obama’s decision to attack Syria has collapsed, along with the credibility of government claims, the administration has fallen back on a standard pretext for war crimes when all else fails: the credibility of the threats of the self-designated policeman of the world,” Chomsky told HuffPost in an email.

Chomsky recently traveled to the region to learn more about the Syria crisis, and his comments there led some to believe he was open to military intervention if negotiations failed to produce peace. “I believe you should choose the negotiating track first, and should you fail, then moving to the second option” — backing the rebels — “becomes more acceptable,” he said.

But his comments to HuffPost indicate that he remains opposed to any military action that came without U.N. approval.

[T]hat aggression without UN authorization would be a war crime, a very serious one, is quite clear, despite tortured efforts to invoke other crimes as precedents,” he added.

[read the rest, here]

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36 Responses

  1. The “[read the rest, here]” link is missing!

  2. Here’s something of note that Chomsky said in the interview:
    For a long time, the Arab world and other places beside have played host to stories and illusions about the supernatural power of the United States, which controls everything through complex conspiracies and plots. In this worldview, everything that takes place can be explained in terms of imperialist conspiracies. This is an error. Without a doubt, the UnitedStates are still a great power and capable of influencing events, but they are not always able to manipulate them by means of complex conspiracies: this really is beyond their capacities. Of course the Americans do sometimes try to do this, but they fail, too. What happened in Syria is not outside our understanding: it began as a popular and democratic protest movement demanding democratic reforms, but instead of responding to it in a constructive, positive manner, Assad reacted with violent repression. The usual outcome of such a course of action is either a successful crushing of the protests or otherwise, to see them evolve and militarize, and this is what took place in Syria. When a protest movement enters this phase we see new dynamics at play: usually, the rise of the most extremist and brutal elements to the front ranks.

  3. Another piece to the puzzle.

    Haaretz

    U.S. President Barack Obama called Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Saturday and informed him that he planned to delay what seemed like an imminent attack on Syria, ahead of his speech at the White House to that regard.

    Obama also told Netanyahu that he would relegate the matter to Congress, and ask for a congressional vote on any military action.

    Senior Israeli officials who asked to remain nameless stated that the phone call took place roughly four hours before Obama’s speech.

    In contrast to phone calls made to other world leaders, the White House decided to keep this specific call between Netanyahu and Obama a secret, and not make any announcements to the press. The Prime Minister’s office in Jerusalem also made no mention of the phone call. White House and the PMO responded to Haaretz inquiries with the same answer: “No comment.”

    Senior Israeli officials stated that the talk between Obama and Netanyahu was aimed at coordinating both states’ next moves regarding Syria.

    Roughly two weeks ago, senior U.S. government officials promised their Israeli counterparts that Israel would be notified hours in advance of any possible attack on Syria, so as to provide ample time for Israeli defense preparations against possible missile fire from Damascus.

    The Israel Defense Forces has been on high alert over the past few days, especially the air force and air defenses. The political-security cabinet has also approved the drafting of about 1,000 reservists to beef up the critical arrays in the intelligence department, the Home Front Command, and the units responsible for the Arrow missiles and Iron Dome arrays.

    Obama wanted to inform Netanyahu of his decision to delay the attack partially to allow Israel to make its security and military preparations accordingly.

    According to reports in the American media, Obama decided to postpone the strike and ask for Congressional approval on Friday night after a tete-a-tete with White House chief of staff, Denis McDonough. Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, also advised Obama that the efficacy of a strike in Syria would not be compromised if it were put off by a few days or even a month. A few hours later,
    Obama phoned Netanyahu to inform him of his decision.

    A senior Israeli official said Obama’s conversation with Netanyahu shows how closely coordinated the two countries are on the Syrian issue. However, it may be assumed that one of Obama’s reasons for the phone call was to keep Netanyahu in the picture and keep him from publicly criticizing Obama’s decision to delay the strike.
    The call from Obama was the main reason Netanyahu took Housing Minister Uri Ariel to task during Sunday’s cabinet meeting. About an hour before the meeting, during an interview on Army Radio, Ariel harshly criticized Obama for hesitating on the matter of a strike against Syria.

    “You don’t have to wait until tens of thousands more children die before intervening in Syria,” Ariel said. “When you throw gas at the population, it means you know you’re going to murder thousands of women, children indiscriminately. [Assad] is a murderous coward. Take him out.”

    Netanyahu was furious over the remarks because over the past few days he had instructed ministers not to express themselves publicly at all about Syria. Netanyahu is concerned that Israeli statements in favor of a strike in Syria will be seen as an Israeli attempt to push the United States into war. Many elements in the United States now accuse Israel and the pro-Israeli lobby AIPAC in Washington of pushing the United States into war with Iraq. Netanyahu himself is perceived in Washington as coaxing the United States to go to war against Iran.

    At the start of Sunday’s cabinet meeting, after the photographers left the room, Netanyahu told the ministers that the crisis over the use of chemical weapons in Syria was still at its height and very sensitive. “We are managing the situation responsibly and with good judgment; there is no place for individual statements. There is central, responsible and careful management here and that is how a responsible government acts.
    And so I am asking you to continue to act responsibly.”

    Netanyahu also told the ministers that he was asking them “not to behave with poor judgment and irresponsibly vis-à-vis our ally the Unite States, to win a moment’s headline.” Netanyahu said that such conduct was essential for the security of all Israelis and that Israel will continue to defend itself and continue to maintain its strategic ties. “You were elected to serve the citizens of Israel from the government and such statements do not serve the citizens of Israel,” Netanyahu said, referring to Ariel’s interview.

  4. Too little too late. The damage is done. Chomsky is greasing the wheels of war.

    Let us count the ways:

    He has supported the dubious proposition that the “Assad regime” should be suspected of using chemical weapons and will “inevitably” use them in the future. He has dismissed those that suspect the Arab Spring and Syrian conflict were initiated by the West and their accomplices (calling them “fringe” conspiracy people and advising people to dismiss them). He stated that the Syrian “protests” were originally peaceful but the “regime’s repressive response” caused these freedom fighters to take up arms! Just like Vietnam. He is even lukewarm about giving them weapons (as indicated above)! He claims Russia is supplying Syria with advanced weapons. He claims, “Israel has done nothing to indicate that it is trying to bring down the Assad regime. ” He doesn’t think the U.S. really wants to bring down the Syrian government. And he pretends it’s the “regime” that needs to be forced to the negotiating table, not the “rebels.”

    His statement about the illegality of U.S. action without U.N. involvement is almost meaningless in the face of these statements that grease the gears for war.

    • Egypt wasn’t initiated by the West, neither was Tunisia. They were taken advantage of by the West after they couldn’t keep Mubarak in power, as they never let a good crisis go to waste. They have successfully countered the revolution with their brutal and bloody coup in Egypt after failing to get Morsi to play ball, or are you of the mindset like Obama that al Sisi is “restoring democracy” in Egypt?

      You can continue to bring up his mistakes on the Syrian situation all you want, but the fact remains that he is accurately describing the law as it stands: any attack on Syria, with or without UN approval, is a violation of international law. And that is a fact that is HARDLY ever mentioned as the drum beats to war are building.

    • I’m not so sure that Egypt and Tunisia were organic revolutions.’ There are many red flags. One main red flag, which I briefly commented about before, is how the Muslim Brotherhood in both countries are just as supportive of the West and Israel as their predecessor governments.

      I do agree that a formal U.S. military attack violates international law if it is not authorized by the U.N. Security Council. But the U.S. has ALREADY violated international law by attacking Syria by proxy (assuming it doesn’t have formal troops there now and not taking into account that massing troops in Jordan or Turkey can also be war crimes). Where is Chomsky demanding the U.N. Security Council be seized with this current violation by the U.S? The mere fact that the aggressor criminal gets a veto and sits on the jury is enough to discredit the U.N. as a fair arbitrator of conflict.

      • “I’m not so sure that Egypt and Tunisia were organic revolutions.’ There are many red flags. One main red flag, which I briefly commented about before, is how the Muslim Brotherhood in both countries are just as supportive of the West and Israel as their predecessor governments.”

        Everyone is so eager to demonize the Muslim Brotherhood. They didn’t start the revolution in Egypt, my friend, they won an election a year and a half afterwards.

        They also are being rounded up and imprisoned by our “friendly” dictatorship in Egypt right now. Factor that into your claims that they are as complicit with the West as Mubarak was, who is enjoying his freedom right now, by the way.

        You seem to miss those glaring inconsistencies with your hypothesis.

        Has it ever occurred to you that demonizing the Brotherhood is simply a way of legitimizing Obama’s bloody coup in Egypt?

      • My operating assumption is that the West has supported the last 4 governments of Egypt (Sadat, Mubarak, Morsi, and the current one). The fact they throw a puppet away when they are done, or appear to, is neither here nor there.

        It’s a confusing situation to be sure and I’m doing my best to make sense of it. Here’s the sources I’ve used recently to try and make sense of it:

        History of the Muslim Brotherhood:

        “The British, the Middle East, and Radical Islam”
        http://www.redmoonrising.com/Ikhwan/BritIslam.htm

        “The Muslim Brotherhood is a NWO Pawn”
        http://www.redmoonrising.com/Ikhwan/MB.htm#I

        [note that I do not agree entirely with 'conservative-leaning anti NWO' people even though I have changed my mind about globalism]

        This article by Chomsky comrade Tariq Ali also describes how the Muslim Brotherhood has previously been, and currently is, aligned with the West in many ways in Egypt and Tunisia (even though it assumes like you that the Brotherhood simply took advantage of the situation rather than conspiring with the West):

        http://newleftreview.org/II/80/tariq-ali-between-past-and-future

        And this article explains confusion I had about how the Muslim Brotherhood is said to have supported a Shia revolution in Iran but now seems like a Sunni partisan group:

        http://www.currenttrends.org/research/detail/the-brotherhood-and-the-shiite-question

        I’m not sure what to make of the Muslim Brotherhood but one can’t deny their seeming alliance with the West through the years. They did try to assassinate Nasser, right?

  5. Notice too that our hero advocates that the U.N. be the sole body for legalizing war.

    Well then, why isn’t he describing outsiders arming and “supporting” this war without U.N. approval a war crime? the U.S./Turkey/Jordan/Gulf States/Saudi Arabia et. al have all pretty much acknowledged their war crimes. Instead Chomsky says this illegal war “becomes more acceptable” because the Syrian government didn’t agree to negotiate its downfall when there is no legal obligation for them to do so.

    Also, why doesn’t Chomsky analyze whether the crippling economic sanctions are allowed under international law? Syria has been a victim of these illegal sanctions well before the West ginned up this current conflict. I think they are clearly illegal and I used to think Chomsky shared my interpretation of these laws and his silence speaks volumes.

    And I don’t trust the U.N. Chomsky is pushing a globalist agenda I no longer want. Just because the Security Council okays a war doesn’t mean it’s legitimate. The Security Council members are just as controlled as Chomsky (including Russia and probably China) and they will fix the facts to get the war they want .

    • You seem to misunderstand the law. The UN in involved in this decision making process because we are a signatory nation under the UN charter. So is Syria. The whole point of that body was supposed to be as a measure to force nations to come together at the bargaining table, rather than launching arbitrary attacks on one another based on flimsy or fabricated evidence. Your gross characterization of the position of the UN reflects the mindset of the Di$info Jone$ cult. The UN has participated in some rather illegal operations themselves, but always at the behest of France, Britain and the United States. However, were it up to the general assembly of the UN, Israel would be the f*ck out of Palestine right now, in fact, they would have been out decades ago, which is probably why Di$info teaches his flock to hate and fear the UN across the board.

      Now you’re just spouting crap that doesn’t even follow your own logic, much less the facts of the history of certain conflicts.

      When you say the UN is just as controlled by “the globalists” as Obama is, you fail to recognize the glaring fact… the security council voted against bombing Iraq based on lies and they have repeatedly voted against attacks on Syria. Were they what you claim, neither of those facts would be true, but they are.

      What they should do is revoke the US’s membership and kick them the f*ck off the security council.

      The last president of the general assembly was trying to reform the UN so that the security council would have to pass a measure and then it would have to be voted on by the entire body of the UN. He wanted that for this reason and so that all the resolutions against Israel would have some teeth to them. He also wanted the veto power removed from the security council, so that one country, always the US, could no longer hold up action to be taken against rouge states like Israel.

      I find it somewhat sad that no matter what Chomsky does, there is always someone there to say “not enough” or “too late” or “what about 9/11?!”

      I also find it somewhat sad that certain people dismiss the body of the UN out of hand, across the board, by stressing only half the truth about the work of the organization. True, like in Haiti, they have been used to facilitate some rather ruthless agendas, always ours of course. But in fact, had the rule of international law been followed, there would have been no Shock and Awe in Iraq and Palestine would be a free and open nation at this very moment.

      Odd that you seem to forget all of that. I guess it’s not that Di$info misses it. He is famous for supporting everything Israel.

      • I understand international law just fine.

        I once accepted the United Nations as the sole legitimate arbitrator of conflict. I was once a “globalist” (I do not want to make common cause with Alex Jones and don’t like the connotation of term but it’s the best description), but now I am very leery of this new international order.

        While the principles the U.N. is based upon are appealing, in practice it is nothing but a shield for the gross use of power by the U.S. and the West, and more specifically, the people that own the U.S.

        Under the United Nations Charter the only legitimate use of force is self defense, or, from authorization from the Security Council. As stated in my first comment, the Security Council is not ‘democratic’ and is composed of mostly U.S./Western allies (with maybe the exception of China, although I’m not sure—and I believe Russia is aligned with the West).

        Let’s look to the Syria conflict and Chomsky’s comments to see just how arbitrary the new international order is. The U.S., Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Jordan, Israel, and a number of other countries are attacking Syria. This goes against international law under the U.N. regime, as well as customary international law. Under international law it doesn’t matter that they are using mercenaries or proxies to conduct this war—it’s still an attack on a sovereign country. Plus there have been direct acts of war: Turkey shelling Syria, massing troops and installing missile batteries at the border, violating its airspace in a threatening manner, or Israel [allegedly] bombing Syria, allowing mercenaries to attack form its borders then allowing escape and treating the wounded, or the same with Jordan. These are all acts of war. I would argue the psychological and propaganda operations are also acts of war. Furthermore, the economic sanctions violate the WTO (which still uses GATT as a framework) as well as customary international law. Why isn’t the U.N. dealing with these acts of war? Instead, the main member countries of the U.N. Security Council are getting ready to attack Syria for exercising its natural and legal right to defend itself from these attacks! The U.N representatives are making excuses for the acts of war being committed against Syria and are advocating regime change, in essence (not to mention promoting these very psychological and propaganda operations like the Syrian Human Rights Committee for its facts on the ground).

        Chomsky furthers this confusion about international law by not explicitly condemning (and indeed supporting) the acts of war being committed against Syria.

      • What good is the UN General Assembly if the elite nations that sit on the Security Council still decide who to go to war with?

        • Well, the UN does other things aside from waging war. And they put a lot of pressure on various countries like Israel. For people who pay attention to such things, a UN Gen. Ass. vote to sanction Israel that comes out 189 to 2 (U.S. and Palau or some shit) says a lot about how the civilized world views her actions. And, were the press to actually report on such things, even a blocked sanction vote would have an effect. If you don’t believe me, just look up how much Israel spends per year in spreading propaganda about themselves. And as you know, UN weapon inspectors reported no WMDs in Iraq, so they do other things aside from voting on wars.

          right now they are blocking a no fly resolution on Syria put forward by the US and blocking various other efforts to destabilize Syria even further.

          They have their problems, obviously. That’s why the former head of the general assembly wanted desperately to reform the way the UN worked, especially the veto power and the way the security council worked.

  6. The weaknesses in what Chomsky is saying here (see Walter Wit Man’s points) are a lot more striking than any value in what he has to say. (His point about international law is obvious, but not particularly illuminating.)

  7. The international order under the U.N. model and U.S. geopolitical hegemony is just as arbitrary as the League of Nations and previous iterations of international law. Might makes right but that is not justice in my book.

    There may have been a few instances where U.N. authorized force would have been helpful, in theory, but the negative uses of force and the failure to act counteract any potential good. Notice the U.N. has never authorized force to enforce Palestinian related resolutions and the U.N. itself is responsible for the original violation of Palestinian rights by creating Israel in the first place! Other instances of involvement created more problems than they solved, most recently by creating South Sudan, and Haiti as you mentioned. Libya is also another example of immoral and illegitimate use of force (if we were to take the principles justifying U.N. force at face value there was no legitimate right to go into Libya). The arbitrary and hypocritical use of ‘responsibility to protect’ under international law is a perfect example of U.N overreach (which is really just an excuse for the U.S. and allies to do what they want). The claims of Libya attacking civilians has been shown to be falsified and I don’t accept Kosovo as a legitimate example.

    Furthermore, look at all the other illegal wars the U.N. has done nothing about, primarily because it was a Security Council member conducting the war. Vietnam jumps out as a good example. Plus all the other secret wars and coups the U.S. and allies have engaged in. As a just judge, the U.N. Security Council has been less fair than a Taliban warlord.

    • I’m not exactly sure why you feel the need to lecture me on the criminal history of the proxy war in Syria since I have been writing about it and exposing it for the past two years. But, be that as it may…

      “Notice the U.N. has never authorized force to enforce Palestinian related resolutions and the U.N. itself is responsible for the original violation of Palestinian rights by creating Israel in the first place!”

      Notice, the U.N. general assembly, hated by Israel by the way, has passed resolution after resolution after resolution about stopping the illegal settlements and Israeli aggression toward the Palestinians dating back to the 70s. Each and everyone has been blocked by a U.S. veto in the security council.

      To blame the U.N. for that would be like blaming the U.N. for the condition Iraq is in right now. It just doesn’t make sense and it’s based on a half-truth. No, they have never authorized force to be used against Israel for their illegal behavior, but they have voted for it time and time again… it’s just the U.S. that has stopped it.

      As to your claim that the U.N. is responsible for the creation of Israel in 1947 via a vote from the general assembly, again, that’s only part of the story.

      At the time, you would have to admit, voting against such a request, right after WWII, would have been rather difficult for any nation, and so the measure was passed.

      But the measure didn’t come from the U.N., it was put forward by the British zionists who were also behind the Balfour Declaration of 1917.

      Since the British Mandate of Palestine was coming to a close in 1948, the timing was perfect going along with international sympathy for the Jewish people in the wake of WWII.

      You can take a look at this map here and see that what was partitioned to Israel has been changed dramatically over the decades as U.N. resolution after U.N. resolution to halt such crimes have been vetoed by the U.S.

      again, by telling only part of the story, you can pretty much blame anyone for anything.

    • If you’re worried about the globalists, the UN isn’t where you should be looking. Try the WTO and the IMF/World Bank axis, along with all the free trade agreements.

      The UN is far from perfect but a reformed UN could do some good. It’s the only real hope of putting a brake on US hegemony.

      Not much of one, but the only one.

      • Well, it’s all part and parcel of the same system, really. I’m mostly complaining about the arbitrary and hypocritical nature of the U.N. Security Council authorization of force. There are positive policies that come out of the U.N. General Assembly and U.N. bodies and programmes, although even that is subject to abuse (like I noted, I don’t trust the U.N. fact finding missions in Syria and other places, as well as other U.N. agencies to be free of control by the West).

        The U.N. process dealing with the maritime borders of Lebanon and Israel might be another example of where the West uses the cover of legal process to get what they want–and something that is directly related to this war in Syria (because of the liquid natural gas rights affected by the decision). Also, is it really effective when there is no real power enjoyed by the General Assembly or other bodies? Just look to Palestine for an example of how the General Assembly and other U.N. bodies and programmes can act as a release valve for negative world opinion while the facts on the ground are controlled by the big boys. Because the General Assembly has no real teeth and only offers the appearance of real democracy, I don’t think it is going to save the world from the U.S./Israel/Western New World Order. It offers false hope.

        But I agree that the trade agreements are more important than the policies of the U.N. in many ways.

        • I understand and agree largely with your view. But what else is there?

          The other way the UN is used by the NWO is to direct the Libertarian right wing fringe to see it as the root of all evil.

          Look at the Fed!!! Look at the UN!!!!

          Distractions.

        • What else is there? I don’t know. It looks bleak.

          I do know that putting our trust in false hope because there are no other choices only makes things worse (see e.g. Barack Obama and the Democrats).

          While there is a lot of stuff anti-NWO conservatives say that make me cringe, I am no longer dogmatic and try to find common ground.

          For instance, I agree the private Fed must be ended!

          However, I don’t agree with conservatives that the fiat money system or a central bank is per se bad (they often foolishly push a hard currency system). I simply think the people should benefit from our money system and we should use Greenbacks like Lincoln did or Continental scripts like Ben Franklin and the colonists did. A Social Credit system pushed by C.H. Douglas and other like minded people is also on the right track. As well as the writings of Ezra Pound and some of the policies in Germany in the late 1930s.

          We’re more enslaved now then we were 100 years ago and the NWO (don’t laugh, this is the language used by these people from Wilson to Bush) and the Fed are at fault.

          • The Fed stuff is a red herring though. And factually wrong. It should be used for public purpose, but that is a political decision. Instead of railing at the Fed for wrongs that aren’t, rail at the political class for insane fiscal policy.

            The stuff about the Fed loaning the governments money into existence isn’t strictly true or important, but the perception plays into the hands of those who don’t want government spending on social programmes i.e. the rich.

            It’s all a hoax.

            • Corrections: I meant it is not a hoax to complain of the Fed. And I meant they abdicated control over monetary, not fiscal, policy.

          • It’s a huge hoax. Please see Naked Capitalism and Modern Monetary Theory for a discussion on these issues from a leftist point of view (I’m not endorsing them though).

            The politicians abdicated their control over fiscal policy when they created the Fed. And the bankers conspired to take it over and are benefiting from their control. All these parties are guilty.

            Most importantly, we let private banks create money/debt via fractional reserve lending and the shadow banking system (e.g. derivatives). This should be tightly controlled by the people. The people should decide who deserves to get loans and we should regulate the gambling and insurance contracts done by private parties. Private bankers should not profit from creating our “money.”

            I agree that those on the right (like those pushing a gold standard) are wittingly, or unwittingly, pushing an austerity agenda. But getting back control over our fiscal policy is the first step. So I consider these gold bugs and End the Fed libertarians to be allies, albeit misguided.

            I say end the Fed and give all fiscal policy to the Treasury. Pay all government debt with the Greenback. Have Treasury give a dividend to all citizens at the end of the year (based on Social Credit system). End all income taxes for the bottom 80% (no need to raise money b/c gov. expenses paid by the fiat Greenback–income taxes should only exist to stop people from getting super rich). Nationalize the banks and most insurance functions and strictly regulate lending and insurance.

            Then we can have a debate about what the government spends money on.

            • I am an MMTer, although I hate the label.
              Fractional reserve banking is another myth. It doesn’t work that way.
              I tend to agree that banks should be public owned. The rest are operational questions. The Fed could be a department of the treasury yes, but that’s just an administration issue.
              The problem with joining the gold bugs and libertarians is that they are wrong and they don’t want a socially progressive outcome i.e. public good. They want the opposite, to strangle the government and kill off public spending.

            • I would be interested to hear why you think fractional reserve banking is a myth. When a bank creates a new loan it creates new money that didn’t exist before and the bank is only limited by its capital reserve requirements. The U.S. requires that financial institutions have 5% or 6% of its loans be backed up with assets, while Basel rules require 3% internationally. http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2013-07-11/u-dot-s-dot-bank-regulators-go-bigger-than-basel-seek-tougher-capital-rules

              So individual banks create new money. They make a handsome profit by being able to “print” money and loan it out at interest. This profit deserves to stay with the people.

              Also, the Fed is a major concern now that it is engaging in quantitative easing . . . basically giving financial institutions free money (is this monetary or fiscal policy?). Bernanke lied when he said he would use a helicopter to drop money to the people (as the Social Credit system truly would), instead this private corporation gave free money to its crony banker buddies by buying up their crappy assets at face value. One regulator a few years ago estimated the benefit of the bailout and quantitative easing to be in the tens of trillions of dollars!

              Regarding an alliance with libertarians and conservative anti-Fed people. . . I don’t trust our democratic system so I have no real hope of a political alliance. When I talk to real conservatives though I enjoy trying to find common ground. If a real political alliance were possible, why wouldn’t conservatives be interested in ending the income tax? They may be open to using debt free Greenbacks and receiving a per capita dividend if income taxes were ended and the Fed were ended. When I talk to real conservatives they are intrigued by this notion. This arrangement would change nothing about what our government spends its money on, and as MMT argues, would actually relieve the deficit hawk concerns.

              • You’ve answered your own question. They create a new deposit with every loan. They don’t require need deposits first.
                Capital ratios are a different issue to the Fractional Reserve model that a lot of people seem to believe.

            • In addition to capital reserves there are deposit reserve requirements, currently, 0%, 3%, or 10% depending on size of institution:

              http://www.federalreserve.gov/monetarypolicy/reservereq.htm

  8. […] U.S. Attack on Syria Without U.N. Approval is a War Crime: Chomsky (willyloman.wordpress.com) […]

  9. ¨Who said the UN is a credible institution? – You do not think the UN is credible? – No!¨
    Assad during an interview with Barbara Walters while being questioned about documents a UN panel had compiled accusing the Syrian Gov. of gross Human Rights Violations. See here: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/24/world/middleeast/un-panel-accuses-syria-of-crimes-against-humanity.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

    The UN better throw a white towel soon, do something to de escalate the rhetoric – with France and most probably the Brits soon to be back in the game, Nato hands will be made to be joined once more I fear but, hope not – so much is at stake…

  10. The U.N. was conceived as a wartime tool of the Allies, shortly after the U.S. entered the war, to solidify their control over the world after achieving victory:

    “The Arcadia Conference also produced the Declaration by the United Nations. Devised by Roosevelt, the term “United Nations” became the official name for the Allies. Initially signed by 26 nations, the declaration called for the signatories to uphold the Atlantic Charter, employ all their resources against the Axis, and forbade nations from signing a separate peace with Germany or Japan. The tenets set forth in the declaration became the basis for the modern United Nations which was created after the war.”

    It didn’t take the Zionists long to issue this Declaration at the Biltmore Conference in 1942:

    1. American Zionists assembled in this Extraordinary Conference reaffirm their unequivocal devotion to the cause of democratic freedom and international justice to which the people of the United States, allied with the other United Nations, have dedicated themselves, and give expression to their faith in the ultimate victory of humanity and justice over lawlessness and brute force. . . .

    8. The Conference declares that the new world order that will follow victory cannot be established on foundations of peace, justice and equality, unless the problem of Jewish homelessness is finally solved. The Conference urges that the gates of Palestine be opened; that the Jewish Agency be vested with control of immigration into Palestine and with the necessary authority for upbuilding the country, including the development of its unoccupied and uncultivated lands; and that Palestine be established as a Jewish Commonwealth integrated in the structure of the new democratic world . . .

    Gaddafi saw the writing on the wall and saw a victor’s justice being imposed:

  11. Samantha powerless at the UN.
    No matter the historical implications set down in the inauguration of the UN, the world stage was invited in degrees to get involved in its evolution.
    It is interesting today, to draw a rough comparison with another such global undertaking – the internet. Borne out of the military industrial complex and calmly handed over to the liberal free market the internet had an evolution of its own. Would this transition from the few to the many have prompted anyone one to guess its outcome?
    While the measures were carefully devised in both examples I’m sure, there remained a risk, a rogue element that originally can not be sufficiently contained. The banking industry and the lesser monopolies have thrived on the internet as expected, while the US’s veto power still holds sway by design in the UN.
    Brzesinski was one to guess this rogue element early on: “Given the contemporary reality of what I have called in my writings ‘Global Political Awakening,’ a policy of force based primarily on Western and in some cases former colonial powers does not seem to me a very promising avenue to an eventual solution to the regional problem,” said Brzezinski, referring to the situation in Syria.¨ We know what prompted the ¨political awakening¨.
    But the UN too suffers under a rogue awakening as other international organizations are established with the centers of gravity pitched towards a quite different alignment of ally and foe. With a global economic rebalance happening, surprises at the UN might become more of a welcome change.
    Samantha Power-less on thursday showed signs of this when she reverted to spouting the same unfounded crap Chuck Hagel took his mouth full with earlier: “the system (UN) has protected the prerogatives of Russia, the patron of a regime that would brazenly stage the world’s largest chemical weapons attack in a quarter-century, while chemical weapons inspectors sent by the United Nations were just across town.”

    • Those are interesting observations Brian.

      Can we really trust gifts of beautiful wooden Trojan Horses from bad people? The internet and U.N? Can good people positively influence something that was birthed by monsters?

      Since I’m of the more skeptical nature I find it hard to trust these gifts and think positive change from within is unlikely.

      I too saw Brzezinski’s comments about how the internet can threaten TPTB. But he saw computer technology as a tool to control the masses way back in 1968: https://docs.google.com/viewer?url=http://64.62.200.70/PERIODICAL/PDF/Encounter-1968jan/18-29/&chrome=true

      So I don’t buy his recent kvetching about the dangers of the internet to TPTB. Seems to me his comments are designed to create trust in this technology and encourage us to think we are free, when we’re not.

      But to your point about taking over institutions for good, such as with the U.N., giving a veto to 5 nations by its very nature is undemocratic and one need only control one state to effectively control the real power in the U.N. So I don’t think the U.N. is salvageable because of this core fact–no matter how much legitimate steam is allowed to be released in the valve of the General Assembly. Also, using a veto for good, as the Russians and China appear to do, isn’t effective because the U.N. can easily be ignored (as in Iraq or Kosovo, etc.). Plus the U.N. drama is currently a distraction from the proxy war already raging in Syria.

      I think Russia is currently secretly on the same side as the West right now anyway, if it hasn’t been since the Bolshevik revolution. Important people in the U.S. always supported the Bolsheviks, and the U.S. government may have as well,* so for the Cold War to be real there had to be an internal changing of Bolsehvik positions vis a vis the U.S. (or within the U.S.) Did this happen after Lenin? Or Stalin? I don’t know. Russia seem to have definitely come back into the fold of being pro Western since the 1990s so if there was an internal change it was likely only for 4 decades or so. I think the same core constituency has run the U.S. for 100 years (at least) so no change there.

      I also wonder about the Islamic revolution in Iran . . , the revolutionaries were relatively pro Western in 1979. But did other more sincere Persian nationalists take over the revolution, say in the 1980s when the U.S. supported Iraq in its war with Iran (and the U.S. at least sold weapons to Iran as well)? Is the Iranian state now truly hostile to the West? But Iran supported the U.S. in Afghanistan and Iraq recently. So who knows there.

      Taking over an institution from the inside is inherently unlikely (because of psychological effects of having to join your enemies), and is too subtle to be effective, imho. Better to attack these seeming “gifts” given by evil people and to start afresh by creating independent states and institutions. Burn that damn Trojan horse to the ground and tell them to get lost.

      *see for instance Bullit’s mission to Bolshevik Russia, does anyone really think Wilson wasn’t aware of the favorable terms for the Bolsheviks?
      http://history.state.gov/milestones/1914-1920/BullittMission

      • Thanks for your reply and entrusting at least one of these wooden horses with it : )

        ¨giving a veto to 5 nations by its very nature is undemocratic and one need only control one state to effectively control the real power in the U.N.¨
        Show me something more democratic today… ehhm.. anyway, Russia is historically to this date the most frequent user of its veto power, China the least.
        Veto power in the UN is debated today and may be scrapped in the future. Still, I would not make a great apologist to the UN , however sidestepping the UN as the US has done more times then you have given examples, is not the best reasoning to delegitimize the institution although it certainly points towards its weakness.. or the empires totalitarian muscle.

        ¨Plus the U.N. drama is currently a distraction from the proxy war already raging in Syria.¨

        Where and what is the UN drama? At this point the childish allegations by the US admin. pertaining to this chem. attack have prompted a fact finding mission conducted by the UN, and to the utter surprise of the US, Assad has granted it. Instead of crossing their fingers in the hope that Assad indeed had managed the attack, the US knows he did not and thus revert to creating rhetorical havoc. But now, the Russians rightly come out, otherwise having been willing to twiddle their thumbs towards the date of the UN’s findings, saying they expect decisive evidence while supplying the mission with data to previus perhaps related incidents. With Assads agreement , the fact finding mission is the political solution that has to be defended and monitored the most – everything else IS terrorist debate as willyloman showed conclusively in his latest article.

        Btw, if the gift of your skeptical nature is nurtured by whom the US funded, you would be in to an unending surprise… but more on point,
        beyond your Bolshevik example, it took years for the US to drown pro communist sentiments in the States, France, Italy.. after WWII, US intelligence turned decisively against the Soviet Union creating – covertly funded by the CIA – the Non Communist Left or what we know as the capitalist Social Democrats only to have their intellectual project disbanded by Johnson during the Vietnam war. The sentiments toward the liberating forces in post war Germany did not necessarily lean to the US as deliverers and the war loot was not least to be the hearts and minds of western people.
        The US supported both sides in Iran, Iraq, the socialist and arab nationalist endeavors by Sadams Baath had to be squashed as did the Islamic Revolution. When Saddam gave his speech ending in: ¨If Palestine is liberated, Arabs everywhere will be free¨, Israel managed to get the US in the boat Khomeini/USweaponry started the war by inciting violence, by calling on the Iraqi Shiite minority to rise up against Saddam, providing the Kurds with weapons, funding Al Dawa and finally closing the Shat al arab and shelling towns and industrial cites. The Islamic Revolution gained traction, became dangerous to US geopolitical interests, the gassing of the Kurds with US help as we now asf you know the rest.

        So, Iran theoretically borders Russia to the south and expansionist Turkey to the east – dreams are made of this. If Syria goes, Iran is isolated and looses its deterrent via Syria – Israel. I think Russia is not so much interested in this, as it is in the status quo of an independent Iran, because if Iran is threatened the more likely radical insurgents will become, eventually threatening to violently destabilize Russia itself. It is imperative to Russia that Syria not fall and that makes this conflict a burning danger to the security of the world, but would Russia endanger the world by safeguarding its interests..?

  12. I think you should save all the Syrain Baby’s Young Children Elderlys & those are not fight they need clean air like we are here bring them too the USA they need our help please. You kill them your not doing the right thing. Help them please.

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