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Monthly Archives: September 2015

John Chuckman

COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN RUSSIA INSIDER

America always believes it did everything worth doing, so it is true to form for it to think it won WWII. I once caught the most abysmally ignorant error in a major American newspaper. It had an article about how the Battle of the Bulge was the greatest battle of the war.

In fact the Battle of the Bulge, though sizable, was almost insignificant compared to the size and horrors of Stalingrad, the greatest battle in all of human history.

And just ask any American about Kursk, the greatest tank battle in history, and you will get a complete lack of recognition of the name.

America’s total losses, on all fronts, in WWII were about 300,000.

Compared with the Soviet losses of 27,000,000 in a grisly total war for survival, American losses seem blessedly light. Even a century before, in the American Civil war, America lost twice that number.

The truth is Americans have never experienced the horrors of total war, yet they like to think they have been incomparably brave and met challenges no one else could have met.

It is a fantasy mentality which prevails in America and this helps the government in its many ugly colonial wars and dark operations because the public largely simply can’t even imagine what is happening. In Vietnam, America lost over 60,000, a pretty small number over ten years, but those losses at their height are what instigated all the riots in the streets of America in the late 1960s. No one knew, or cared, that America killed an estimated 3,000,000 Vietnamese, a true modern holocaust.

I do believe in WWII that there was a tacit agreement to let Russia and Germany bleed each other. The U.S. has followed that concept a number of times including in the 1980s with the Iran-Iraq War.

America avoided starting the important second front in Europe until very late, and I do believe even then, when Russia was clearly defeating Germany, the motivation had to do with fear of Russia rolling through Europe.

In the Asian Theater, America used the most horrific methods to bring the Japanese to their knees. First, there was endless firebombing and then the only actual use, against civilians, of nuclear weapons.

It is an established fact that the Japanese were ready to surrender before the atrocity of Nagasaki. They had put out feelers through third parties. All they wanted was to keep their emperor. But the U.S. wanted absolutely unconditional surrender, an attitude reflecting the same kind of triumphalism we see from America today.

The final decision on the atomic bombs also related to Russia. America was sending a message to Russia that it not only had a working nuclear bomb and a number of them, but it was very willing to use them, American thinking again being to stop the victorious Russian Army from going too far. The original plan for the atomic bombing of Japan included the dropping of twelve bombs at intervals on different cities. These were not military targets. The plan was utterly cynical and immoral.

John Chuckman

COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN RUSSIA TODAY

You express it a bit strongly, but you are essentially right about Abraham Lincoln and brushing aside the American Constitution.

In fact, Lincoln’s record goes well beyond ignoring the liberties granted by the American Constitution.

He pretty much instigated the Civil War itself. He sent men and supplies into Fort Sumter at a time of great unease as a deliberate provocation.

The South was uneasy about Lincoln’s election because he was seen as an abolitionist, but he was definitely not an abolitionist. He was a property-respecting lawyer who did a lot of work for corporations like the Illinois Central Railroad, work which made him a reasonably well-off man and a well-known figure.

The South’s firing on Fort Sumter after resupply started the war, but even then things might have gone differently had Lincoln wanted them to go so.

At any rate, the Civil War was entirely unnecessary.

If the South had been allowed peaceably to go its own way, slavery would have died in a matter of decades anyway, just as it did in places like Brazil. Perhaps, then, the South would have returned hat-in-hand to ask to re-enter the Union.

Whether that happened or not, the war was not worth the 600,000 lives it cost, still by far the greatest number of losses the U.S. ever experienced (compare American losses of only about 300,000, a century later in WW II).

Many readers may believe, because it is an untrue concept endlessly promoted, that the Civil War was about slavery, but it most certainly was not.

Lincoln used the slavery issue as a tool against the South. He himself said he would be glad to see an end to the war just so long as the Union was intact, with or without slavery. The Emancipation Proclamation, freeing slaves, was not issued until 1863 in a war which started in 1861.

The Civil War was actually about the disturbing and unstable matter of the relative powers of the individual states versus the national government. This was a vexing issue left unresolved by the original framers of the Constitution, and Lincoln was determined to solve it, and he did.

In the process of doing so over four years, the United States was turned into a great new military and industrial power in the world.

All of America’s later long record of imperialistic wars, such as the Spanish-American War, effectively grew out of that fact.

John Chuckman

COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE ON RINF

Yes, American news is certainly censored, but to varying degrees so is the news in all countries.

What makes America stand out from most lands is not censorship but the manufacture of news.

Much of what is published and broadcast in the United States is simply manufactured. It speaks of events which did not happen, it gives events which did happen a false twist, and it is written to promote bias and favoritism.

In foreign affairs, Americans are quite literally among the worst informed people on earth.

It is truly Orwellian, and I don’t see how it is even possible to correct the situation, given a massive set of intelligence agencies with agendas and a mere handful of corporate press outfits whose interests are anything other than unbiased information.

John Chuckman

COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN THE GUARDIAN

Mr Corbyn strikes me as an inherently fair-minded person.

Why should there be a relationship that is somehow different than the relationships with all other groups?

The very idea that there should something extra here is pure bias.

It is also an invitation to establishing the kind of leverage the Israel Lobby (not some fetid fantasy but an established fact of serious academic study) enjoys in the United States.

Nothing could be less fair than that special interest relationship which sees a great nation’s policies and acts distorted unnaturally towards one very small nation.

_____________________________

“…existential threat to Israel from Iran and extremist organisations such as Hamas.”

That is boiler-plate language from Israel’s official playbook.

There is no genuine threat of any kind from Hamas, let alone “an existential one.”

That is the most arrant nonsense and special interest pleading.

The only existential threat to Israel is Israel.

Its behavior of occupation and abuse of millions cannot go on indefinitely.

It will certainly go the way of the Soviet Union if it doesn’t behave as a nation of laws fair to all.

And living in the kind of dark security state Israel has become is simply not attractive to most Jews in the world.

John Chuckman

COMMENT

Trump would actually make almost the ideal American President.

He’s arrogant, rude, loud-mouthed, possesses a great deal of ignorance, and is filthy rich.

As far as his ability as President to conduct any dramatic changes in America’s mindlessly violent foreign policy, well, he would find himself in the same position as any other new President, at the mercy of the gigantic military-intelligence-security establishment which created the policy in the first place.

So, yes, by all means, vote for Trump.

 

NOTE TO READERS: I never renounce my legitimate views, as those here, but I have, you will know from other pieces of mine, come to see Trump, even with all his faults, as a small source of hope in a few crucial areas of policy. The fact that his opponent is the most dangerous possible candidate for world peace obliges any thoughtful person now to support Trump.

John Chuckman

COMMENTS POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN THE GUARDIAN

Well, I’ve always believed that at least a third of Americans are thoroughgoing fascists.

The great American journalist of WWII, William Shirer, author of The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, wrote that he believed America was only a short way from going fascist.

And there were many historical bases for saying that.

The American Bund movement, often forgotten today, was a huge quasi-Nazi organization running around the United States in uniforms like Hitler’s Brownshirts.

The Klu Klux Klan, also in its practices much resembling the Brownshirts, had almost a century of history.

American imperialism arose early in the country’s history and with wars like the Spanish-American War, using phony excuses, was little different to Nazi plans for German expansion in Europe.

There was the longstanding treatment of American Indians and Blacks.

In the 1920s, there was a series of massacres of blacks in several places, notably one in Oklahoma where a whole neighborhood of about 300 blacks was murdered, their property stolen, and their bodies buried in mass graves.

Right down to today, American has very large groups of private militias and Aryan Churches.

And just consider, since WWII, America has started many wars, killed millions of innocents in dirty imperial wars from Vietnam to Iraq, and has used dozens of dirty operations to topple governments, including a number of democratic governments. America has also played an important role in the several genuine genocides since WWII. In Indonesia, the State Department actually worked into the night submitting names for the slaughter. The killing fields of Cambodia only took place because America, in its insane war with Vietnam (itself rightly termed a genocide, having slaughtered three million), destabilized a moderate but non-aligned government allowing a ruthless bunch to take over and begin murdering. In Rwanda, America early knew of the horror but deliberately kept it quiet and offered no help. To all of that, we see virtually no opposition inside America.

________________________________

In answer to another reader’s assertion about keeping his guns:

Oh sure, you and a cabinet full of hunting rifles are going to stand up to America’s massive armed forces which are equipped with everything from flamethrowers to tactical nuclear weapons.

And then there’s the massive National Guard, almost equally well equipped and having demonstrated in numerous black ghetto uprisings its readiness to shoot dozens of Americans dead in the streets.

Then there are also America’s massive, militarized police forces that shoot people daily (about a thousand Americans a year) without qualm and mainly without consequences.

We mustn’t forget the Homeland Security organization which recently has been storing arms and ammunition and vehicles at a furious pace largely in secret.

Then there are all America’s belly-crawling Special Forces, thousands of bountifully equipped and well trained murderers, especially skilled at killing in the middle of the night.

And there’s an Air Force which could easily destroy whole neighborhoods or towns with everything from white phosphorus to cluster bombs.

This is supplemented by the Air National Guard.

And today, still further supplemented by America’s large, secret extralegal execution organization using drones and missiles to kill anyone they are ordered to kill.

Yep, you and other like-minded Americans are ready for a last stand with shotguns and hunting rifles.

Your statement is yet one more tired repeat of the utterly out-of-date Second Amendment stuff about opposing tyranny in America.

America has in fact morphed into something not one signatory to its Constitution would even recognize and probably with which most would be horrified. Much of the Constitution they wrote resembles a derelict building creaking in the wind of a ghost town.

John Chuckman

COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN THE NATIONAL POST

No one writing for The National Post ever gets the situation in Syria correctly.

All of our national press, like that in the United States, deliberately obscures these matters.

America and Russia both talk about stopping terror, but they each mean completely different things.

Not being at all the aggressive leader America never stops yapping about, Putin has not made up his mind about entering Syria, but if he does go to Syria to fight ISIS, among other terror groups working there, it will be precisely because he is supporting the government of Syria and genuinely fighting terror.

Obama doesn’t want Putin in Syria to fight ISIS because the United States is only making a show of fighting ISIS. You don’t fight the people you set up to do a job you want done. ISIS is doing America’s dirty work trying to topple the Syrian government.

When America talks of bombing, it means bombing which can help ISIS, and the other terrorists, complete their dirty work. America bombs Syrian infrastructure, as does Canada in Harper’s stupid effort to join in the American cause.

Sure, sometimes America actually kills some of their recruited ISIS members, but that is for show or because they have somehow exceeded their mandate. Quite possibly, once the government of Syria has been destroyed, America will go after ISIS, but that would only come after.

For Putin to talk of bombing means genuinely bombing ISIS and hampering its efforts to destroy Syria.

It’s all a filthy business, and the sponsors of all the killing and destruction and homelessness are the United States, Israel, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar. They do everything from training, arming, equipping, and even giving refuge and medical help.

The terrible refugee crisis in Europe is ultimately the complete fault of these parties, none of which even has the decency to take the refugees they create. Harper’s Canada actually takes a token amount of refugees and at the same time joins in the bombing to create more.

The truth is, were Harper to genuinely fight ISIS, Israel would become extremely angry with him, and that could only mean some of Harper’s generous donors of campaign funds – the special interests for Israel he has groomed for years – would also become angry with him.

In this, as in so many things, Harper joins the United States in telling lies to us daily.

John Chuckman

COMMENT POSTED TO A COLUMN IN THE GUARDIAN

She was and remains the person with the lowest intelligence active in American politics.

Her special curse from the gods is that they bestowed her also with a constant urge to talk and tell everyone listening exactly how stupid she is.

None of which, however, is any barrier to gaining high office in America, the land of opportunity.

That is especially true when you espouse Neanderthal-like, conservative views. Things apparently are arranged so that great showers of money just fall into your lap enabling you to keep “getting your message out there.” Sarah already has been a considerable beneficiary of the phenomenon.

Here is some good humor on the topic for readers:

http://chuckmancartoons.blogspot.ca/search/label/CHUCKMAN%20CARTOON%20-%20PALIN%20-%20THE%20ACTUAL%20TEXT%20OF%20SARAH%20PALIN%27S%20SPEECH%20NOTES%2

http://chuckmancartoons.blogspot.ca/search/label/CHUCKMAN%20CARTOON%20-%20PALIN%20-%20BUSH%20-%20PROOF%20THAT%20LIGHTNING%20DOES%20STRIKE%20TWICE%3A%20PALIN%20AND%20BUSH

http://chuckmancartoons.blogspot.ca/search/label/CHUCKMAN%20CARTOON%20-%20PALIN%20-%20SARAH%20PALIN%27S%20TEA%20PARTY

John Chuckman

COMMENT POSTED TO A COLUMN IN THE NATIONAL POST

Christie Blatchford seems to have become The Conservatives’ chief apologist.

Her apology here though seems totally unneeded.

I believe in these two cases of dropped candidates, the bone-headed people involved would have made perfect Conservative candidates.

Pranks? Isn’t this the party of robo-calls and frat-boy negative advertising?

Isn’t this the party of never telling the truth to people?

Of never giving a straight answer?

The party of not complying with officials attempting to investigate misdeeds?

The party of hiding the many stupid things it has done?

The party of Mike Duffy, Pamela Wallin, Nigel Wright, and other charmers?

The party of slavishly catering to special interests?

The party of giving the finger to many of the world’s serious concerns?

The party of John Baird who resembles nothing so much as a mad dog when he argues with people?

The party of Peter MacKay, a man who had an affair with a subordinate, later harassed her and called her a dog in public, and then lied about it as well as a man who has demonstrated incompetence in almost every portfolio in the cabinet?

The party of the absolute thug, Patrick Brazeau?

The party of Maxime Bernier, who left top secret NATO papers at his biker girlfriend’s house for weeks?

The party of Pierre Poilievre, perhaps the most seriously twisted sister ever in Parliament?

I just cannot believe what an opportunity the party has missed with these two new fellows, each surely potential minister material.

It’s a shame, I guess that’s the price you pay for political correctness.

John Chuckman

COMMENT POSTED TO A COLUMN IN THE NATIONAL POST

It is crap to say Harper can’t be blamed for the horror of a dead Syrian child lying face down in the sand, Christie Blatchford.

Harper comes across in this emotional public event as the dried husk of a human being he truly is.

Leaders lead and set a tone and spirit for others.

Harper has led nothing, and the spirit of his time in office is Canada is as a completely indifferent place to human suffering and to threats and chaos at previously peaceful places like Syria.

I am repeatedly surprised by the depths of emptiness he displays in matter after matter.

Imagine the leader of a nation with the reputation Canada used to enjoy just letting people rot while he actually joins in the killing in Syria, albeit on a limited scale owing mainly to our not having enough fighter jets.

Well, I’ve always said he really secretly wanted to be an American, and I think he now has joined the hallowed ranks of Newt Gingrich and Dick Armey and Dick Cheney. They are not conservatives, they are creatures from Madam Tussaud’s Chamber of Horrors.

One thing is sure, when Harper is swept from office in October, he and Laureen will find a warm welcome in East Texas.

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ISIS is not responsible for the horror in Syria because it is merely a tool of outside powers, a terror weapon dropped into a beautiful, previously peaceful country.

It is the sponsors, suppliers, and enablers of ISIS – and other terrorist organizations like the al-Nusra Front – who are very much responsible for the horrors.

They are the United States, Israel, Turkey, and Saudi Arabia (with some additional money from Qatar).

These gangs of thugs and cutthroats would not even be gangs and they would not be in Syria without massive outside assistance.

The whole aim of the sponsors and suppliers of these horrors is to destroy the beautiful land of Syria and effectively smash it into pieces. The covert, proxy approach being used in Syria is different than the direct, blundering, and murderous American invasion of Iraq, but its goal is precisely the same in the end.

Who cares about the millions displaced, the hundreds of thousands killed, the historic treasures destroyed? Not America. Not Israel. Not Turkey. Not Saudi Arabia.

The chief beneficiary of all this horror is America’s nasty little colony in the Mideast.

And come to think of it, isn’t that same American colony one of Harper’s most intense and continuing focuses, to the point of having made, and causing some ministers to make, the strangest sudden outbursts of loyalty to it without any seeming context or cause on a subject, arbitrarily selected from the affairs of the world’s two hundred or so nations, and of no special interest to most Canadians?

And aren’t Canadian apologists for the colony’s own many atrocities among Harper’s keenest campaign contributors and supporters?

I suspect there is an unspoken but direct connection between those supporters and the idea of not taking in tens of thousands of Syrians, as we very much should. Of course, making no emergency effort in this regard comes easily to Stephen Harper, a man who has proved himself virtually devoid of humanity.

After all, the word “terror” is used by some in exactly the way the word “witch” was used in 17th century Europe, being repeated and echoed countless times like a superstitious mantra, although the genuine threat of terror in North America is virtually non-existent.

John Chuckman

COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN THE GUARDIAN

There has been talk of this Chinese anti-ship missile for some years.

Now it would appear to be operational.

It climbs in a very high arc and, when it turns down, an elaborate computer and sensor system guides it to a target.

It reaches a great velocity – many, many times the speed of sound – and the tremendous kinetic energy with which it hits its target makes a warhead almost superfluous.

There are pictures on the Internet of experiments with targets shaped like the decks of flat tops, and the missile punches a big hole right through them.

China is reportedly stationing units of the new ASBM (Anti-Ship Ballistic Missile) along its sea coast.

China with this and other measures is clearly telling the United States that the South China Sea is not an American lake, and rightly so.

Russia, by the way, has another approach to attacking capital ships. Its Sunburn cruise missile travels at several times the speed of sound and weaves unpredictably as it closes in on its target. It is a very effective weapon.

There are yet other new weapons. China has a submarine which entered the space of an American battle group a few years ago and surfaced right in the middle of it undetected by all the American fancy array of electronic gear. The US Navy was said to be horrified at the remarkable feat but has kept quiet about it.

The technologies involved in the submarine – special rubbery coating on its hull and virtually silent screw drives – may well be of Russian design since Russia’s newest submarines are so equipped.

American aircraft carriers grow more vulnerable every day, and, if they are not already doomed in a big war, they will soon be.

A further note, China and Russia both are developing another potentially very deadly weapon, a hypersonic, steerable ram jet vehicle which may be used in various ways, including on top of a missile. China has tested this totally unstoppable weapon at least three times of which I am aware.

John Chuckman

COMMENT POSTED TO A COLUMN IN THE NATIONAL POST

Laureen Harper does at least know how to smile, years of marriage still not having transferred that ability to hubby.

But of a woman who married this creepy man – he is reclusive, largely humorless, often tyrannical, and given to furious bouts of anger (many having testified) – I think it fair to say something important just has to be missing.

Not only are Stephen Harper’s personality and character unattractive, but I’m sure a great many women would agree, the man is not even good-looking. And his body is just as unattractive as his face, having a rear end I’ve heard described by a woman as a “bucket ass.” His stomach too periodically bulges so that you can see his belly button in sweaters, a fact which reminds us that he’s also a mighty poor dresser. Glamorous or attractive, he’s not.

So what possibly could be Laureen’s attraction? Power? Ideology? Masochism? All of the above?

Creepy husbands generally do attract creepy wives – as we see in the Bill Clinton or Tony Blair cases – but Laureen gets very little exposure (deliberately?) most of the time, so we can’t really know what she is about.

John Chuckman

COMMENT POSTED TO A COLUMN IN THE NATIONAL POST

There is only one reason for an apology here.

The Mayor used the wrong word to describe Stephen Harper’s new private security unit recruited from veterans to work at campaign stops.

“Brownshirts,” the Mayor’s word, were a uniformed, quasi-military group, officially known as the SA.

The Mayor probably should have described them as Gestapo, a secret police force which wore plain clothes.

Then, there’d be no need to apologize.

John Chuckman

COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN THE GUARDIAN

These are tough but accurate words about the Monarchy from Polly Toynbee.

As someone who has always enjoyed British history and tradition, I nevertheless think Polly Toynbee’s final words are wise ones: “…let Elizabeth be the last.”

The days of monarchs reigning are in fact well over. We now only maintain the empty appearance of things without any meaning.

It was around the time of the Great Elizabeth, daughter of a fearful tyrant and herself one of the most successful monarchs in history, that Parliament already was beginning to encroach on the power of the Monarch, and that development continued inexorably, resulting in a monarchy, say, by Victoria’s day which was largely symbolic. Today, even the awarding of honors is nothing more than signing papers put before the Monarch and reflecting the government’s political desires.

The Monarch as a branch of government, a kind of check against government excess, has become a badly faded fantasy. The Monarch today wouldn’t dare oppose an elected government on anything. There was never a peep over all Tony Blair’s lies and horrors, and that was about as deadly consequential as any government behavior is ever likely to be.

Everyone instinctively understands these things, so it really is a kind of dumb show we go through. And the system is subject to all kinds of awkward and embarrassing happenings – eg. The whole gigantic Diana fiasco, and yet today we have her one son, Harry, displaying some extremely unattractive traits and signs of her instability.

Science and ordinary experience tell us that even the basic assumption of aristocracy and monarchy is a false one: a superior father or mother is little guarantee against mediocre grandchildren.

John Chuckman

POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN THE GUARDIAN

Sorry, but Cherie Blair has always been a bizarre and repulsive personality.

From sounding off like the proverbial fish wife to her 7,000 dollar hair-dos.

From begging Hillary Clinton to meet a filthy rich monarch to yawning in public with the Queen present.

From appearing in her dressing gown on Downing Street to making almost spastic movements at times.

I don’t know which is worse, her or low-life Tony.

But I do know no couple except America’s Borgias, the Clintons, ever deserved each other more.

I collect special political images, and here is Cherie at her best/worst:

http://chuckmangrotesques.blogspot.ca/2010/10/blairs-tony-and-cherie-looking.html

http://chuckmangrotesques.blogspot.ca/2008/09/blog-post_7098.html