Normally, I would be parsing the Rachel Maddow Show for my Tweeps on Twitter tonight, as I do every weeknight. Sadly, my Twitter account has been temporarily suspended. That is a story for another time. Am going to do the parsing here:
Rachel is on fire, following up the ground-breaking post by Amazon founder and Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos. His bombshell revelations about Mueller – cooperator, Trumpanzee David Pecker, and his media company AMI, threatening to expose sexually explicit photos and news about Bezos’ private life, have far-reaching repercussions.
Rachel gives context to the fact Robert Mueller had entered into a Plea Agreement with National Enquirer publisher David Pecker, that would mean no prosecution in return for his truthful testimony and cooperation, related to Donald Trump. That Agreement was entered into, based on the rule that Pecker & AMI must NOT commit any criminal acts in the interim before the cases he is assisting with, are fully prosecuted and discharged.
Pecker predictably picked the wrong folks to try and outsmart. What Jeff Bezos did, was to not only reveal the threats against him, but the fact that his own reputable private investigators had discovered Pecker and AMI’s connection to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
This is the same Mohammed bin Salman who arranged the murder of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi. The same financial resource for Donald Trump, Jared Kushner and the rest of the Trump Crime Family. Buying good PR meant that AMI published The New Kingdom, a glossy ad mag for bin Salman. Pecker sought out that business, through Trump.
The sheer hubris of thinking that their blackmail business model would work on The Richest Man in the World, and other investigative journalists, dovetails perfectly with that of the Traitor-in-Chief, fake president Donald Trump. They are mobsters. Just like Vladimir Putin.
Trying to silence the Washington Post, and its ongoing investigations into Trump-Russia Collusion, the Trump-Russia Conspiracy, the Trump Corporation, the Trump Foundation, the murder of Jamal Khashoggi and the oppression of dissidents and activists within Saudi Arabia, might work elsewhere. Not in America. Not even in the America that is under relentless attacks by Enemies Foreign and Domestic. Democracy Truly Dies In Darkness…
Today’s contentious appearance before the House Intelligence Committee, by “Acting” Attorney General Matthew Whitaker, is part of the same attempt to subvert Democracy, and allow an installed puppet-government to continue it’s “Domestic” destruction of American institutions, including The Constitution.
What gives me hope, is that Robert Mueller and His Team, working with other judicial and law enforcement agencies across America, is building the most critical far-reaching and prosecutable case possible together. They are being aided by the best investigative journalists, allies around the Word and concerned citizens like you and me. The very reason that their efforts will eventually succeed, is that this is NOT Russia, China, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela or other entrenched autocracies.
Yesterday, Traitor-In-Chief, Fake President Trump stayed in his hotel and tweeted hateful comments to Californians while their state became an inferno. Others, REAL Leaders honored those who served and died, to defend Democracy. They attended memorial services across France.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau visited the Vimy Ridge Memorial, where he laid a wreath and made a heart-felt speech in the pouring rain. Vimy holds a special place in Canadian’s hearts and consciousness. 66,000 fought and died during World War One. The Canadian Expeditionary Force served with distinction.
They fought heroically at the Battle of Arras, wherein lies Vimy Ridge, and on other bloody battlefields across Europe. On the 11th hour of the 11th day, Armistice Day, we remember their sacrifice during the Great War. We said Never Again.
Canada itself had only become a nation in 1867. At the start of World War 1 in 1914, Canada’s population was just under 8 million. Over 619,000 Canadians enlisted and served, both at home and abroad. Putting that into context, our losses were staggering. While so many perished on the battlefield, many came home alive, but irreparably damaged.
World War 1 was the first major global conflict in which chemical weapons were used. In this case mustard gas, phosgene gas, chlorine gas and tear gas were deployed with deadly and life-changing consequences. The newly invented machine gun and bombs propelled the permanent need for on-site amputations of arms and legs. The number of those surgeries was astronomical. Shell Shock became the euphemism for PTSD. Needless to say, those who survived the Great War, came home with serious untreated mental health issues that they never talked about. Those issues haunted them to their grave. The painting below is by renowned artist John Singer Sargent…
The Royal Canadian Army Medical Corps and the Canadian Army Nursing Service performed heroically on the European battlefields. They had previously distinguished themselves attending to Canadian soldiers in South Africa, during the Boer War (1899-1902) and at home.
Canada Remembers because the Battle to Save Democracy NEVER Ends.
That is why my Russian grandfather fled the Jewish Pogroms, joined the French Foreign Legion, then joined the British Army and fought in WWI. He eventually made his way to Canada, where he worked and raised a family. My father, his son, served in the Royal Canadian Navy during WW2, working on dangerous North Atlantic convoys. Two of his brothers served in the Royal Canadian Air Force. One became an acclaimed war artist, whose paintings of the liberation of the Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp, Hamburg and Hanover, hang in the National War Museum in Ottawa. What he witnessed, haunted him for the rest of his life.
Canadians have always had our American Cousin’s backs, never more so than today. We have served in the trenches of every major global conflict, with our American Cousins.
That is why it is so important, perhaps even more important today, to continue the Fight To Save Democracy. Make no mistake, nothing less than global Democracy is at stake in these perilous times. As Putin’s Puppet Donald Trump, meets with his master in France, the Republican Party that is no longer the Party of Lincoln, helped install him. We must understand that while many of the battlefields have changed, the battles are just as bloody.
Putin has weaponized social media and the internet. As he masses forces on Ukraine, Belarus, Polish, Finland & other borders, he has become the de facto ruler of Syria. He and Bashar Al Assad have bombed the Syrian People into oblivion. Putin is playing all sides against each other, hoping to draw America, Iran, Israel, Syria and Saudi Arabia into an all-out Middle East war. He has created chaos everywhere.
He finances and manipulates White Supremacists and domestic terrorists in Europe and North America, uses his own mercenaries in Africa and elsewhere. Very quietly, Putin has taken over much of the Arctic. His newest ice-breaking nuclear submarines have disappeared off the radar, but my money’s on them being in the Arctic, where drilling for oil has become a priority.
He and his cronies the Russian Oligarchs have looted and pillaged Russia. They have become obscenely wealthy, at the expense of the Russian people. The economy has fallen flat. His propaganda machine is in overdrive. Once again the Russian people are at the mercy of a cold-blooded tyrant who is murdering his opposition, with impunity. My Russian grandfather is turning over in his grave.
Robert Mueller, his team of Trump Russia Investigators, other intelligence agencies, judicial bodies, investigative journalists – foreign and domestic, Allies around the World and concerned citizens everywhere, have a part to play in the Battle to Save Democracy. Now is The Time For All True Patriots To Come To The Aid Of Their Country – On this Remembrance Day 2018, Never Again is NOW!
– End –
In Flanders Field was written by Canadian physician Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae, in 1915. It was written after the Second Battle of Ypres, in Belgium. Since World War One, the Canadian Legion, Canada’s War Amps, the Vimy Foundation, Veterans Affairs and others have played an important role in addressing Veterans needs, and making sure that their contributions to preserving Democracy are honored, from generation to generation.
Please donate to these organizations, so that the never-ending services and support that they give Our Veterans can continue: Lest We Forget
It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle, than to find a peaceful resolution to what is happening in Gaza today and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict overall. This much we know to be true.
Those who do not know or choose to ignore history, are doomed to repeat it. This much we also know to be true. Dearies, it is with a heavy heart that I write this post. It has taken many sleepless nights to shape the following thoughts.
When Atticus Finch tells daughter Scout, in Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird “you never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view, until you climb in his skin and walk around in it”, he was talking about racism, persecution and hatred. He also cut to the heart of the matter in the Middle East, and the rest of the World when it really comes down to it.
The emotional rhetoric from all sides inflames the horrific situation in Gaza and Israel and creates chaos, where calm, rational judgement and action are needed now more than ever.
The Balfour Declaration of 1917 was a letter from the UK Foreign Secretary to the Zionist Federation of Great Britain and Ireland. It was later approved at the 1926 Imperial Conference.
His Majesty’s government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country.
The Balfour Declaration laid the foundation for the modern State of Israel, which gained its independence from Britain in 1948. The Declaration carved out the State of Israel, bordered by Egypt, Syria, Jordan and Lebanon
Imagine being a newly-birthed nation, surrounded by mortal enemies, who only seek your total obliteration from the face of the Earth, every minute of every day.
Imagine being a nation borne of the greatest Holocaust the world has known…the elimination of 6 million Jews in Nazi concentration camps during World War II.
Imagine being an Arab settler in the disputed areas of Palestine, at the time Israel’s birth. You have as much right to be there as the Israeli settlers do.
How is it then, that those who have know the very worst of persecution throughout history, go from being the persecuted, to becoming the persecutors? I believe that living in a virtual state of psychosis all of these years, has polarized the right in Israel.
President Menachem Begin was once considered a terrorist by the British, as a member of the notorious Stern Gang, fighting for an independant State of Israel. President Anwar Sadat was part of the coup that overthrew King Farouk and brought Gammel Abdul Nasser to power as Egypt’s first President. Sadat succeeded him. These two polar opposites managed, with the help of President Carter, to negotiate the Camp David Accords and a 1979 Peace Treaty. Both Begin and Sadat were awarded the Nobel Prize.
In his Noble Prize acceptance speech, Sadat stated
Let us put an end to wars, let us reshape life on the solid basis of equity and truth. And it is this call, which reflected the will of the Egyptian people, of the great majority of the Arab and Israeli peoples, and indeed of millions of men, women, and children around the world that you are today honoring. And these hundreds of millions will judge to what extent every responsible leader in the Middle East has responded to the hopes of mankind.
President Sadat was assassinated by fundamentalist army officers on 6 October 1981.
In September 1991, on the lawn of the White House, President Clinton oversaw the signing of another Middle East Peace Accord, with Chairman Yasser Arafat of the PLO and Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin.
Prime Minister Rabin was assassinated by an Israeli ultra-nationalist terrorist on November 4, 1995, at a rally in support of the Oslo Accords.
The great warrior-peacemaker Moshe Dayan once said
If you want to make peace, you don’t talk to your friends, you talk to your enemies… Israel cannot afford to stand against the entire world and be denounced as the aggressor…Jewish villages were built in the place of Arab villages. You do not even know the names of these Arab villages, and I do not blame you because geography books no longer exist.
Mahmoud Abbas inherited the leadership of the Palestinian people upon Yasser Arafat’s death on November 11, 2004. He has had to tap-dance on the head of a pin, as Hamas and its masters have tried to undermine him at every turn, even as he considered making peace with Israel. They have succeeded.
I believe that religious extremist groups like Hamas have polarized the right in the Arab nations. Their message of hatred and destruction resonates strongly with the hopelessness and despair of young Arabs, and that is something that must not be ignored
Saudi Arabia, Dubai and other Middle East Countries abandoned the Palestinian people long ago.Instead of helping them build a socially and economically viable home, they have watched nervously from the sidelines. They pray that the hatred focused on Israel’s total obliteration does not eventually turn back on them.SHAME ON THESE WEALTHY COWARDS!!
Iran of course, has set the cat amongst the pigeons in unleashing Hamas and other groups, not just in Gaza but Syria and elsewhere. It is quietly licking its chops in anticipation of further chaos.
Yet who are we to cynically reject the optimism of the extraordinary young Anne Frank, who died in a Nazi concentration camp. She wrote in her famous diary
” It’s difficult in times like these: ideals, dreams and cherished hopes rise within us, only to be crushed by grim reality. It’s a wonder I haven’t abandoned all my ideals, they seem so absurd and impractical. Yet I cling to them because I still believe, in spite of everything, that people are truly good at heart. I simply can’t build my hopes on a foundation of confusion, misery, and death. I hear the approaching thunder that, one day, will destroy us too, I feel the suffering of millions. And yet, when I look up at the sky, I somehow feel that this cruelty too shall end, and that peace & tranquility will return once again. “.
Ms. Frank eloquently puts the situation in Gaza in perspective. Every dead child in Gaza and Israel adds to that perspective.
The many Arab and Israeli peacemakers such as those featured in Bridges Across An Impossible Divide: The Inner Lives of Arab and Jewish Peacemakers, refuse to be drawn into this continuous cycle of death, destruction and chaos. The book isby Rabbi Marc Gopin, a peacemaker in his own right. Seeking Peace does not demonstrate weakness. Just the opposite, it shows a courage,strength and wisdom beyond the use of guns, missiles and other weapons of mass destruction.
There is path to Peace – there must be. But it needs the willingness of Mr. Netanyahu, Mr. Abbas, the leaders of Hamas and all involved, to understand history and NOT REPEAT IT…