Friday, February 28, 2020

Judging Julian: Vanessa Baraitser and the Impossibility of Justice

Your Man in the Public Gallery – The Assange Hearing Day 3 

by Craig Murray

27 Feb, 2020

In yesterday’s proceedings in court, the prosecution adopted arguments so stark and apparently unreasonable I have been fretting on how to write them up in a way that does not seem like caricature or unfair exaggeration on my part. What has been happening in this court has long moved beyond caricature. All I can do is give you my personal assurance that what I recount actually is what happened.

As usual, I shall deal with procedural matters and Julian’s treatment first, before getting in to a clear account of the legal arguments made.

Back in the KSA: U.S. Replugging Saudi Bases

US Military Building Presence in Saudi Arabia for First Time in 17 Years

by Alan Macleod - MintPress News

February 28th, 2020

Some 2,500 US troops have arrived at their new home for the foreseeable future, the Prince Sultan Air Base in Saudi Arabia.

Amid rising tensions with Iran, the United States is increasing its military presence in Saudi Arabia- separated from the Islamic Republic by only the Persian Gulf. Some 2,500 troops have arrived at their new home, the Prince Sultan Air Base, some 60 km southeast of Riyadh. On Iran, General John Walker, commander of the 378th Air Expeditionary Wing at the base, said: “We face a thinking enemy that is playing a real regional conflict for keeps, and they’re very good.”

Canadian Coupster: Mr. Trudeau's Determined Anti-Democratic Tendencies

Trudeau’s extraordinary campaign to overthrow Maduro

by Yves Engler

February 26, 2020

The effort Justin Trudeau’s government is putting into removing Venezuela’s President is remarkable. So is the utter hypocrisy of their campaign.

On Thursday Ottawa hosted the Lima Group, a coalition of countries supporting Washington’s bid to overthrow the Venezuelan government. A CBC headline noted, “Ottawa attempts to reboot campaign to remove Maduro from power in Venezuela.” For more than a year the Lima Group has openly pushed Venezuela’s military to overthrow the government. Thursday’s summit was the third held in Canada of a coalition instigated by Canada and Peru in mid 2017.

Thursday, February 27, 2020

New Britain's Understanding: Who Rules & Who Walks with Head Lowered & Eyes Averted

With Head Lowered And Eyes Averted - Israeli Racism And The ‘Honourable’ Robert Peston

by Media Lens

26th February 2020

Robert Peston is one of the UK’s most high-profile broadcast journalists, renowned for his theatricality and… curious… halting… delivery. As political editor of ITV News he has enormous influence, including 1 million followers on Twitter, just behind the BBC’s political editor, Laura Kuenssberg, with 1.1 million. He also hosts a weekly ITV political discussion show, ‘Peston’. From 2006-2014, Peston was the business editor for BBC News and from 2014-2015 economics editor. Before that, he worked at the Financial Times 1991-2000, becoming the financial editor in charge of business and financial coverage. He then became a contributing editor of the hard-right magazine The Spectator and a weekly columnist for The Daily Telegraph. In 2001, he switched to the Sunday Times, where he wrote a weekly business profile, ‘Peston’s People’. The son of a Lord, Baron Peston of Mile End, he is entitled to use the ‘courtesy’ title, ‘The Honourable’. 

Also from a family of high renown, the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg, is the granddaughter of the Scottish high court judge Lord Robertson. His brother, Sir James Wilson Robertson, was the last British Governor-General of Nigeria. Kuenssberg’s sister is a former high commissioner to Mozambique.

How fortunate UK viewers are to have two leading political editors standing so impartially between the ruling class and the hoi polloi.

Dead Monkeys Tell the Tale of Britain's Chemical Weapons Capabilites and Theresa May's Skripal Case Fabrications


by John Helmer - Dances with Bears


February 27, 2020

The ongoing release of secret information about nerve agent manufacture and testing at Porton Down, the British Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL), indicates that monkeys were used as targets for several years before Sergei and Yulia Skripal suffered poisoning in Salisbury on March 4, 2018.
The British kill dose and death speed experiments on the monkeys 
were paid for by the US Defence Department.

Publication of the experiment details and the number of monkeys and other animals tested show that the Anglo-American nerve agent weapon programme was under way for several years before the Skripal case began, and has continued since then. This gives the lie to the 2018 declaration to parliament by then-Prime Minister Theresa May that “only Russia had the technical means, operational experience and motive to carry out the attack”.

Man in the Glass Booth: Assange Refused Permission to Participate in His Trial

Assange Courtroom Drama Speaks to This Illusion of Justice

by Patrick Henningsen - 21st Century Wire

February 27, 2020 

Over the first two days of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s U.S. extradition hearing, the majority of the drama has taken place in the well of the court, but that all changed on Wednesday as the focus gradually drifted to the back of the room, behind adjoined panels of bulletproof glass.

Throughout the first three days of the hearing, Assange’s defense team, led by Edward Fitzgerald QC and Mark Summers QC, laid out an impressive score of skillful legal arguments, which can only be described as effortlessly debunking and dismantling nearly all of the allegations contained in the prosecution’s 18 federal indictments. If this were a normal jury trial, then the defense would have already called for a motion to dismiss.

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Getting Past Illusion: America Must Face Its Reflection with Maturity

The United States of America’s Doll House: A Vast Tapestry of Lies and Illusions

by Edward Curtin - Dissident Voice

February 4th, 2020

It never happened. Nothing ever happened. Even while it was happening it wasn’t happening. It didn’t matter. It was of no interest. The crimes of the United States have been systematic, constant, vicious, remorseless, but very few people have actually talked about them. You have to hand it to America. It has exercised a quite clinical manipulation of power worldwide while masquerading as a force for universal good. It’s a brilliant, even witty, highly successful act of hypnosis.
— Harold Pinter’s Nobel Prize Acceptance Speech, 2005    

While truth-tellers Julian Assange and Chelsea Manning sit inside jail cells and Edward Snowden lives in exile in Russia, the American people hole up in an illusionary dwelling constructed to reduce them to children afraid of the truth. Or is it the dark? This is not new; it has been so for a very long time, but it has become a more sophisticated haunted doll’s house, an electronic one with many bells and whistles and images that move faster than the eye can see. 

"Kangaroo Hearing" Heard on First Day of Assange Process in London

Julian Assange and the Imperium’s Face: Day One of the Extradition Hearings

by Binoy Kampmark  - OffGuardian

February 26, 2020

If we are to believe it, Julian Assange of WikiLeaks, the man behind showing the ugliness of power, is the one responsible for having abused it. It is a running theme in the US case against this Australian publisher, who has been given the coating of common criminality hiding the obvious point: that the mission is to make journalism on official secrets, notably those covering atrocity and abuse, a crime. 

Protesters stood outside the Crown Court building,
chanting in support of Julian Assange

The first day of full extradition hearings against Assange at Woolwich Crown Court was chocked with a predictable prosecution case, and a robust counter by the defence. Central to the prosecution’s case for extradition to the US is the emphasis on the ordinariness of Assange’s alleged criminality, to diminish the big picture abuses of empire and focus on the small offences of exposure. In so doing, that seemingly insurmountable problem of journalism becomes less important. If you publish pilfered material from whistleblowers, you are liable, along with those unfortunates who dared have their conscience tickled.

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, Steve Poikonen, Andre Vltchek, Janine Bandcroft February 27, 2020

This Week on GR

by C. L .Cook -

February 27, 2020

The extradition hearing for WikiLeaks publisher, Julian Assange began Monday in London. Assange was dragged, listeners may recall, from Ecuador's embassy in that city last April 11th following a nearly seven years-long asylum there. He's been held since in Britain's Belmarsh Prison, or "Britmo" in conditions so appalling, UN Rapporteur for Torture, Nils Melzer demanded his immediate release. Melzer also condemned the extradition case the United States has put forward, saying he very much doubted Assange would receive a fair trial should British courts hand him over to them.

Steve Poikonen is a columnist, broadcaster, organizer with Action4Assange, and co-host of the #FreeAssange Vigil. Steve also hosts the 'Slow News Day' podcast, available on

Listen. Hear.

Steve Poikonen in the first half.

And; never mind Venice; in a decision that will prove practically momentous, Indonesia's president, Joko Widodo floated the idea of relocating the country's capital, Jakarta from Java to Borneo. It seems, not only is the current capital polluted, corrupt, and holding top spot on the Human Misery Index of World cities, but at a mere 9 meters above sea level, the president thought it high time to move.

But, will it be a case of jumping from the boiling pot into the burning fire? Climate changes and massive deforestation have brought dryer weather to Borneo, where mega-fires threatening air quality throughout the region have becoming an annual event.

Andre Vltchek is an itinerant journalist, filmmaker, philosopher, and playwright. He has covered wars and conflicts around the World, going to the places and talking to the people most directly effected by state violence. He's been travelling to Borneo for the last few years, recording the destruction of the natural environment and civic life there. He says, the capital move to the island will, "...further erode the environment and rob millions of hectares from the island and its people."

Vltchek is also a prolific author whose latest books include: ‘China Belt and Road Initiative: Connecting Countries, Saving Millions of Lives’. ‘Revolutionary Optimism, Western Nihilism’, ‘The Great October Socialist Revolution’, ‘Fighting Against Western Imperialism’, and, with Noam Chomsky, ‘On Western Terrorism: From Hiroshima to Drone Warfare’. I spoke to Andre Sunday.

Andre Vltchek from Hong Kong in the second half.

And; Victoria-based activist and long-time Gorilla Radio contributor, Janine Bandcroft will be here at the bottom of the hour with the Left Coast Events Bulletin of some of the good things you can get up to in and around our town in the coming week. But first, Steve Poikonen and the prosecution of Julian Assange.

Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Thursday between 11-Noon Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, and on the internet at:  He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, Check out the GR blog at:

Duterte and Philippines Turn East: America's Asia Pivot Losing the Plot

Philippine Patriots Say ‘No to WWIII’ and ‘Yes to the New Silk Road’ 

by Matthew Ehret - SCF

February 23, 2020

The Philippines President Duterte’s recent announcement that the 1998 U.S.-Philippines Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) would be cancelled has renewed hope that not only would this former U.S. colony finally attain freedom from imperial manipulation, but also that a new emerging age of infrastructure development can usher in an end of poverty and war in the Pacific.

On Feb. 7, the Philippine president notified the USA that a 180 day period has begun in which time American military personal will have to evacuate the territory with Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin stating “the deputy chief of mission of the embassy of the united states has received the notice of termination of the Visiting Forces Agreement. As a diplomatic courtesy there will be no further factual announcements following this self explanatory development.” 

The Ghosts of MH17: Documents Reveal Intelligence Agency Rebuke of Narrative of Russian BUK Missile in Jetliner's Downing


by John Helmer - Dances with Bears

February 24, 2020

There was a new release of documents by Bonanza Media, Max van der Werff and Yana Yerlashova on Monday morning. They add to the evidence released last week from the files of the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) prosecuting the downing of Malaysia Airlines MH17 on July 17, 2014.

Two secret reports by Major General Onno Eichelsheim, head of Dutch military intelligence (MIVD), have been disclosed in their Dutch origanals. The first told Dutch prosecutors that the MIVD relied on intelligence obtained from “partner informatie” – partner intelligence — to conclude no Russian BUK missile radar and launch units had crossed the border into Ukraine before or on July 17, 2014; no BUK missile radar targeting or firing on MH17 had been detected; and no identified Russian units on the Russian side of the border had launched missiles.

Galloway Speaks to Eva Bartlett on Western Mendacity of Syria Narrative

Interview on George Galloway’s The Mother Of All Talkshows

by Eva Bartlett - In Gaza

February 25, 2020

George gives an excellent introduction on the nature of systematic, paid-for, organized, deliberate, war propaganda on Syria, to deceive people and whitewash the nature of the heinous, criminal, actions of the terrorists dubbed by the west as “rebels” who have beheaded children, among other crimes. He kindly points out that I and others who have been telling the truth on Syria are being vindicated on a daily basis.

During the interview, I noted the media portrayal of what is happening in Syria (incessant demonization of Syria and Russia), and that Syria has a legal right to fight terrorism, and an obligation t

Monday, February 24, 2020

Assange Court Report: Day 1: Morning

The Assange Court Report: Day 1: Morning

by Bridges for Media Freedom

February 24, 2020

Twice-daily dispatches, photography and video from the Julian Assange extradition hearings at Woolwich Crown Court. Produced by Bridges for Media Freedom

Hundreds gathered outside a London court today to protest at the first day of the extradition hearing of Julian Assange, with their chants of “Free Assange,” fully audible inside the hearing room.

Sunday, February 23, 2020

The New Map: Seeing the World the Way the Pentagon Does

"NATO Go Home!"

by Thierry Meyssan - Voltaire Net

February 18, 2020

For two decades, US troops have been imposing their law on the broader Middle East. Entire countries are now without a state to defend them. Populations have been subjected to the dictatorship of the Islamists. Mass murders have been committed. There have been famines as well. President Donald Trump has forced his generals to repatriate their soldiers, but the Pentagon intends to continue its work with NATO soldiers.

Arrival at the Atlantic Council of the Supreme Commander of the United States 
Forces for Europe and Supreme Commander of the North Atlantic Alliance, 
General Tod D. Wolters (Brussels, February 12, 2020).

President Trump will spend the last year of his first term in office bringing the Boys home. All U.S. troops stationed in the broader Middle East and Africa are expected to withdraw. However, this withdrawal of troops will in no way mean the end of US governance in these regions of the world. Quite the contrary.

Mayor Pete Last Man Waving: "Russia Has Achieved Near Total Democracy Infiltration" - Intelligence

Intelligence Sources: All Candidates Are Russian Agents But Pete Buttigieg

by Caitlin Johnstone - Rogue Journalist

February 23, 2020

Today’s Caitlin Johnstone essay has been replaced by this breaking report by the National News Conglomerate. NNC: Obey.

Following shocking reports from The New York Times and The Washington Post that Moscow is simultaneously working to both re-elect Donald Trump and ensure the nomination of Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders in the Democratic presidential primary race, NNC has obtained further information confirming that nearly all candidates currently running for president are in fact covert agents of the Russian government.

Turkish Gamble: Who Will Call Erdogan's Cards?

Could the Latest Outburst of Ankara’s Temper Lead to Escalation in Syria?

by Andre Vltchek - NEO

February 17, 2020

So far Turkey, militarily the second mightiest NATO country, has been able to get away with virtually anything it has chosen to brew in the Middle East. The reason why, is simple: to confront Turkey’s bullying and expansionism militarily would be like confronting the United States or Israel; thousands of innocent people would die as a result, or perhaps even millions.

Moscow is well aware of the situation. Its diplomacy is superb. And its desire to keep Syria as one entity has gained admiration and support in many parts of the world. But not in the West, not in Israel and not in Ankara.