NYT: Obama Hoped to Transform the World. It Transformed Him.

The president’s 2009 speech in Cairo, broadcast in a cafe in Baghdad.

1) this is not true: “The Arab Spring stirred hopes of reversing this bleak trend, and Mr. Obama initially gambled on its success, defying old allies like Saudi Arabia and Israel and expressing support for pro-democracy movements in Egypt and Tunisia.”  
Obama clearly favored the pro-US dictatorship and even tried hard to arrange that they stay in power and allowed them to use force to stay but when it became impossible for them to stay, he pretended that he was for democracy.
If anything, Obama was a leader of the counter-revolution movement from day one.
2) Shatz faults Obama because he did not fight a bigger war in Syria. If he did, he would have been declared a man of peace by Shatz.

JAN. 12, 2017 nytimes

When Barack Obama entered office, the hopes that he raised in his own country were exceeded only by the hopes he raised abroad. Mr. Obama tapped into those hopes with his inspirational rhetoric about a “transformational” presidency, and his promises were scarcely less dramatic. America would be steered back on track, working with other countries to meet the challenges of what he often called an “interdependent” world, from terrorism and poverty to financial crisis and global warming.

Rapturous crowds thrilled to his speech in Berlin in 2008, a few months before he was elected; less than a year into his presidency, the jury in Oslo awarded him a Nobel Peace Prize for his “vision” of a world without nuclear weapons, as if he were a poet rather than a head of state. Expectations ran so high that few spotted the contradictions in Mr. Obama’s project, which sought to usher America into an era of relative decline and yet still somehow achieve transformative results. Being commander in chief prevented Mr. Obama from speaking frankly about the growing constraints on American power. But no one would experience them more sharply — or more frustratingly.

This was, in part, the legacy handed down to him by George W. Bush’s truly transformational presidency, which envisioned a post-Cold War order of limitless American power. Mr. Bush created a new reality in the Middle East and trapped Mr. Obama in a war he had opposed in Iraq, and one that couldn’t be won in Afghanistan. Though he sought to reduce America’s footprint, Mr. Obama would distinguish himself as an even more zealous hunter of terrorists than Mr. Bush, presenting the assassination of Osama bin Laden as a centerpiece of his re-election campaign, even as he made no secret of seeing terrorism as an exaggerated threat. Extraordinary measures were required to begin undoing the extraordinarily destructive Bush legacy, but Mr. Obama proved mostly incapable of them. He did not transform the world; the world transformed him.

Eight years ago, Mr. Obama suggested a messenger from a dreamy, multicultural future: the son of a Kenyan father and a white American mother; a well-traveled cosmopolitan who had spent much of his childhood in Indonesia, seemingly at home wherever he planted his feet. His vision of international diplomacy stressed the virtues of candid dialogue, mutual respect and bridge building. His famous address to the Islamic world, given at Cairo University in 2009, was a judicious balance sheet of past wrongs and an eloquent plea to turn a new page in history.

“Real power,” the president told Jeffrey Goldberg of The Atlantic last year, “means you can get what you want without having to exert violence.” Exhibit A, in the Obama years, was the Iran deal, which not only peacefully prevented Tehran from developing a nuclear weapon, but also brought about a thaw in Iran’s relations with the West.

But that deal, along with a climate change agreement and a rapprochement with Cuba, was a rare success. The arc of recent history has not bent toward Mr. Obama’s cosmopolitan vision of an interdependent world. On the contrary, the world — and America itself — is increasingly bedeviled by the tribalism that horrified him on a visit to his relatives in Kenya. In “Dreams From My Father,” he writes of arriving with “simple formulas for Third World solidarity,” only to discover that most Kenyans “worked with older maps of identity, more ancient loyalties,” and that his liberal humanism fell on deaf ears.

Nowhere was such tribalism more incendiary than in the Middle East, thanks in large part to Mr. Obama’s predecessor. Before the invasion of Iraq, Sunni and Shiite Muslims lived side by side, and often intermarried, under authoritarian states and a regional balance of power that provided stability, if not democracy. Mr. Bush put an end to that fragile balance. Iraq was liberated from Saddam Hussein, but the result was sectarian warfare, fueled by a struggle between Iran and Saudi Arabia.

The Arab Spring stirred hopes of reversing this bleak trend, and Mr. Obama initially gambled on its success, defying old allies like Saudi Arabia and Israel and expressing support for pro-democracy movements in Egypt and Tunisia. In these revolts, he saw an opportunity not only to improve America’s image in the Middle East but also to end the Muslim world’s isolation. From the ruins of the Arab revolts a new age would emerge, but its key players would be tribally minded strongmen and armed militants. And for aid and inspiration they would look not to the West but to the Persian Gulf states, Iran, Turkey and other regional power brokers.

Mr. Obama not only adapted to the shape of Middle Eastern power politics, but he also largely overlooked human rights abuses by Saudi Arabia, Israel, Egypt and other allies. The Bush administration’s patronizing rhetoric of democracy promotion was shelved, but this came at the cost of reducing American concerns in the Middle East to terrorism and national security.

In a speech to the Turkish Parliament in 2009, Mr. Obama promised that “America’s relationship with the Muslim community, the Muslim world cannot, and will not, just be based on opposition to terrorism.” Yet that is precisely what happened, even if the “war on terror” was decorously renamed the “fight to counter violent extremism.” The war was based on Special Operations and drone strikes rather than torture and ground invasions, but it, too, was subject to few restraints, and eventually it came to cover a much greater land mass. Styling himself as an anti-terrorist commander, Mr. Obama buried the legalistic multilateralism that he had taught at Harvard. While the drone program began under Mr. Bush, Mr. Obama substantially expanded it. Armed with a “kill list” and the Predator joystick, he could eliminate America’s enemies, while avoiding land wars — or public scrutiny.

Mr. Bush’s occupations provoked liberal outrage; Mr. Obama’s drone war emitted a kind of white noise that most Americans ignored. But the killing of people by drones or Special Operations was not unnoticed in Yemen, Somalia and Pakistan or other countries, and did little to win local hearts and minds. In fact, his determination to avoid American casualties, even as he expanded the battlefield, reinforced the impression that for all his talk of cooperation and partnership, he was a pitiless realist.

That realism was at its most glacial in the case of Syria’s civil war. Chastened by the results of NATO’s intervention in Libya, where a dictator was replaced by militia rule and jihadist violence, and always a reluctant humanitarian, Mr. Obama understood that the Syrian war was as much a sequel to the bloody sectarian struggle inside Iraq as it was the latest installment of the Arab Spring. He drew a cold but defensible conclusion: The growth of the Islamic State was a direct threat to American interests that merited a military response, but President Bashar al-Assad was not. Intervention against Mr. Assad would lead to clashes with Russia, for whom Syria was a core interest.

At first glance, the twists and turns of Mr. Obama’s Syria policy made the president seem indecisive, if not incoherent: calling for Mr. Assad to step down without taking direct action against him, even after the regime’s use of chemical weapons in defiance of Mr. Obama’s “red line”; attacking the jihadists of the Islamic State while allies like Turkey and Qatar supported other extremist groups; opposing Russian designs and then coordinating airstrikes with Moscow. But the aim of keeping American troops out of Syria was consistent. At his final news conference as president, Mr. Obama expressed anguish over the fall of Aleppo, but insisted that his Syria policy had been guided by his sense of “what’s the right thing to do for America.”

It may well have been; American lives were spared. But noninterference created a vacuum that autocrats like President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia and Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey were happy to fill. What’s more, Mr. Obama’s understanding of American interests in Syria was more restrictively drawn than one might have expected from a man so worldly, someone who had always stressed the interdependence of the global community and the moral burdens of “what it means to share this world in the 21st century.” Who governs Syria may not be a core American interest, but the country’s apocalyptic splintering is another matter. The effect of Mr. Obama’s caution, as much as Moscow’s belligerent resolve, was to help prolong the war.

The consequences of Syria’s disintegration have spread far beyond its borders. Not only has the crisis placed dangerous strains on neighboring states, but it has emboldened the far right in Europe, which has played on fears about Islam and terrorism in its campaign against immigration and the European Union. Nor has the United States been unscathed by what Mr. Obama recently called the “tug of tribalism”: Donald J. Trump owes his election to it. Mr. Trump is an open admirer of tribal politicians like Mr. Putin, Mr. Erdogan and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel, not least because they remind him of himself with their love of the mob, contempt for liberal elites and penchant for conspiracy theory.

In his 2009 speech in Cairo, Mr. Obama imagined Muslim and Western democrats working together in partnership, overcoming borders imposed by war, prejudice and mistrust for the sake of a common future. Instead, the very prospect of a common future, of global interdependence, has been jeopardized by the emergence of an illiberal world of tribes without flags. Despite the best of intentions, and for all his fine words, Mr. Obama became one of the midwives of this dangerous and angry new world, where his enlightened cosmopolitanism increasingly looks like an anachronism.

DNI, CIA have lost the plot, and RT is beating CNN

RUSSIA HACK? Still no evidence here, nor is there any “intelligence” here either. This latest crisis of confidence in Washington DC is not going away just because DNI head James Clapper says the “Russians did it,” or because Wolf Blitzer is bullying his guests into agreeing with the assessment of the CIA, FBI, DIA and the rest of the alphabet soup politicized operatives living off the fat of land. SUNDAY WIRE host Patrick Henningsen is joined by Hesher from ACR’s Boiler Room to break down this story, and also reveal why RT is beating CNN in battle for ratings (as well as hearts and minds) worldwide.

Over 50,000 children have been killed in Syria so far. Why?

“Israel’s ambition has long been to weaken Syria, sever its strategic alliance with Iran and destroy Hizbullah. Israel has great experience at “targeted assassinations” — not only in the Palestinian territories but across the Middle East. Over the years, it has sent hit teams to kill opponents in Beirut, Tunis, Malta, Amman and Damascus.” — Who killed Rafik Hariri?


Shimon Peres long time terrorist responsible for the ethnic cleansing of Palestinian villages in 1947-49, during the Nakba and more. Netanyahu is a megalomaniac war criminal. Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak , war criminal is named in “Lolita Express” pedophile little black book.


An American friend who knows Washington well recently told us that “everybody” there knows that, as far as the drive to war with Syria is concerned, it is Israel that directs U.S. policy.

Why then, we replied, don’t opponents of war say it out loud, since, if the American public knew that, support for the war would collapse?
Of course, we knew the answer to that question.

They are afraid to say all they know, because if you blame the pro-Israel lobby, you are branded an anti-Semite in the media and your career is destroyed.

The U.S. government were pushing for a war with Syria as early as 2003, Congress documents reveal. 

Former US Secretary of State Colin Powell demanded that Syria sever its connections with organizations aiding Palestinians pursuing self-determination on May 2, 2003 – threatening the government with military action if they did not comply.

In September 2003 the US Under Secretary Of State John Bolton warned that Syria may be pursuing a WMD program, urging the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee that action needed to be taken.

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John Bolton Zionist Agent

Gowans.wordpress.com reports:

Documents prepared by US Congress researchers as early as 2005 revealed that the US government was actively weighing regime change in Syria long before the Arab Spring uprisings of 2011, challenging the view that US support for the Syrian rebels is based on allegiance to a “democratic uprising” and showing that it is simply an extension of a long-standing policy of seeking to topple the government in Damascus.

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Amy Goodman of Democracy Now It seems that Amy Goodman and the Saudi Foreign Minister see eye-to-yet on Syria. Those two are the last people still speaking about “a Syrian revolution”.

Indeed, the researchers made clear that the US government’s motivation to overthrow the government of Syrian president Bashar al-Assad is unrelated to democracy promotion in the Middle East. In point of fact, they noted that Washington’s preference is for secular dictatorships (Egypt) and monarchies (Jordan and Saudi Arabia.)

The impetus for pursuing regime change, according to the researchers, was a desire to sweep away an impediment to the achievement of US goals in the Middle East related to strengthening Israel, consolidating US domination of Iraq, and fostering free-market, free enterprise economies. Democracy was never a consideration.
We are about to witness what we long anticipated, to wit: a Turkish-led NATO attack on Syria to remove the present Syrian regime and replace it, Libyan-style, with another so-called Islamic regime. How else will Israel be able to claim that a ‘rising Islam’ now menaces that country, and that Israel is being surrounded by that menacing Islam and must wage pre-emptive war in order to survive? How else will Israel be able to replace USA as the next ruling State in the world unless she wages great wars – particularly against her Arab neighbors who surround the Zionist State?”Imran Hosein

Agenda of Evil

The 5th column fascist terrorists among us.  blah blah till about 4:30

Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, House Foreign Affairs Committee speaks at 3rd Annual Tom Lantos Briefing.2012.

Ros Lehtinen was born in Cuba in 1952 and came to Miami in the 60’s. Raised a Catholic, her grandfather was a leader of the Jewish community in Havana who stayed on after the Revolution.  She joined the most intransigent hard right in Miami, the remnants of Cuba’s Plantocracy formed by former slave owning sugar and rum interests. As a significant player in plantocracy politics, Ros-Lehtinen does her best to promote AfroCuban civil rights in order to pit them against the Cuban government.

Ros Lehtinen is swimming in the same waters as Jeb Bush and other corrupt officials, she has no problems defending people who have been convicted of millions of dollars’ worth of embezzlement: Exclusive: Florida Rep Helped Fugitive Embezzlers  2/4/2014 Daily Beast: “Florida Republican Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, while she was Chairwoman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, sent a letter to federal agencies on behalf of two Ecuadorian bankers convicted of embezzlement who were seeking U.S. residency. She also advocated for their family members, who donated over $20,000 to her campaign. William and Roberto Isaias, who were convicted in absentia of embezzlement in Ecuador more than a decade ago, have been fighting for the right to avoid extradition and establish residency in the United States.” afrocubaweb.com

 Tom Lantos: Another virulent Zionist with his hands on the levers of power

December 10, 2007

“There can be no divided allegiance here. Any man who says he is an American, but something else also, isn’t an American at all. We have room for but one flag, the American flag, and this excludes the red flag, which symbolizes all wars against liberty and civilization, just as much as it excludes any foreign flag of a nation to which we are hostile….and we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the American people.” — Theodore Roosevelt, 1919

He was born in Budapest, Hungary to a Jewish family and later became one of the staunchest Zionist supporters of Israel, a nation founded by western powers and Jewish terrorism, ethnic cleansing, and wiping off the map of historical Palestine, a nation of indigenous people: Jews, Christians, and Muslims living in peace for 1,400 years..

One could naturally conclude that this alludes to Theodor Herzl, the founder of Zionism and the author of the “Jewish State”; but you would equally be correct if you said this also applies to the modern day Herzl, Representative Tom Lantos (D-CA), the author of countless bills, resolutions, and hearings with the single purpose of supporting Israel and bashing its “enemies” around the world.

This Jewish multimillionaire is now Chairman of the powerful House Foreign Relations Committee. In this role he wields enormous power in support of Israel with American taxpayer funded economic, military and technological aid, while with “AIPAC” whom he calls his “friends”, ensures that our cowardly Congress is kicked into submissiveness behind the AIPAC/LANTOS agenda for Israel even if it means sending our military youth to die for Israel’s wars.

In Ha’aretz, Israel’s most respected paper, Lantos is quoted as telling Colette Avital, Minister of the Knesset (Israel’s Parliament); ““My dear Colette, you won’t have any problem with Saddam. We’ll be rid of the bastard soon enough. And in his place we’ll install a pro-Western dictator, who will be good for us and for you.” (Ha’aretz Sept. 30, 2002: He’s denied it but Ha’aretz stands by the story)

According to the Jerusalem Post, a former AIPAC official bestowed on Rep. Lantos this honor: “HE’S TRUE BLUE AND WHITE”; referring to his undying devotion to Israel rather than to his home country, the United States of America with its Old Glory; “the true red, white, and blue”.

Serge Halimi of Le Monde Diplomatique wrote: Lantos “acts as a mouth piece for Likud policies”. i.e., not for his constituents who voted for him and pay his salary. Lantos, the Israel Lobby, Neocons and other Jews with tremendous influence in almost all of America’s institutions constitute what J. J. Goldberg calls “Jewish Power”.

Even when AIPAC is being investigated for spying for Israel (Larry Franklin CIA affair), our government is so intimidated by this Lobby that it can’t refuse any invitation to its Annual Conference, especially by the presidential candidates who know the road to the White House goes through Israel and AIPAC. Compare this cowardly behavior to the GOP’s presidential candidates claiming “scheduling conflicts” to avoid attendance at events held by other minorities, such as African-Americans.

For a very long time in U.S. and world political circles, Jewish Americans have been accused of “Dual Loyalty” to both Israel and the U.S. For a great analysis on the issue of “Dual Loyalty”, please see the article “Dual Loyalties” written by two experienced former CIA Analysts, Kathleen and Bill Christison, published in Counterpunch on September 6, 2004. It summarizes this issue with specific examples of Jews who’ve manipulated our government to serve Israel above America’s interests.

Rep. Tom Lantos currently is the Chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs which is responsible for foreign policy legislation, management of the Department of State, foreign assistance, trade promotion, export controls, foreign arms sales, student exchanges, international broadcasting and most other issues of our foreign relations.


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This Committee has 7 Sub-Committees; three of the seven Sub-Committees are chaired by Jews.

  • Subcommittee on Europe: Chairman; Rep. Robert Wexler (D-FL)
  • Subcommittee on Middle East and South Asia: Chairman, Gary Ackerman (D-NY)
  • Subcommittee on Western Hemisphere: Chairman, Elliot Engel (D-NY)

With such power and influence, foreign affairs around the world are directly impacted by these Pro-Israelites. The message to the world is simple: You want nice with us, be very nice to Israel.

Eighty Seven percent of Jewish Americans vote Democratic with forty to sixty percent of all campaign donations to the Democratic National Committee coming from Jewish Americans. Campaign financing (with media support) is the most powerful tool in our “democracy” where the rich elite control the real power in our government.

The Jerusalem Post, October 11, 2007, commenting on Vogue magazine’s October 2007 issue “The New Establishment” ranking the 100 most powerful people says, “It’s a list of “the world’s most powerful people. 100 of the bankers and media moguls, publishers and image makers who shape the lives of billions ….More than half its members, at least by one count, are Jewish. It’s a list ….Populated by a Cohen and a Rothschild, a Bloomberg and a Perelman; the list would seem to conform to all the traditional stereotypes about areas of Jewish overrepresentation. ..Joseph Aaron, the editor of The Chicago Jewish News said; “ talk about us having power in this society” [1]

The website “Jewishachievement” in its review of Mother Jones magazine’s March 5, 2001 issue ranking the top 400 political donors in the 2000 Presidential campaign states that the magazine “seemed to miss the elephant in he room – namely, the large number of Jewish donors. Namely, forty-two of the top one hundred donors were Jewish….What are the odds? Four of the top five (S. Daniel Abraham, Bernard Schwartz, David Gilo and Chaim Saban) were Jewish Democrats and each donated more than $1 million”. [2]

The pendulum for Jews has swung dramatically from being the persecuted in Christian Europe to become the persecutors of Muslim and Christian Palestinians, Syrians, and Lebanese, among others.

The famed British historian Arnold Toynbee wrote of this incredulous, inhumane, and heartless change whereby the persecuted became the persecutors.

“On the morrow of a persecution in Europe in which they had been the victims of the worst atrocities ever known… the Jews’ immediate reaction to their own experience was to become persecutors in their turn… In 1948, the Jews knew, from personal experience, what they were doing; and it was their supreme tragedy that the lessons learnt by them from their encounter with the Nazi German Gentiles should have been not to eschew but to initiate some of the evil deeds that the Nazis had committed against the Jews” In his “Study of History”.

The power and wealth of Jewish Zionists is manifested in their extreme disproportionate representation in all fields in American life. This is due to their high education status, their wealth and business acumen; their well organized and financed PAC’s in every state often using benign names that don’t reflect their Zionist objectives, their strong activism and high voting patterns, and their aggressive behavior that subdues many Americans who are generally non-confrontational.

Here’s their disproportionate representation in the current 110th Congress. Many hold powerful Chairmanships or Party leadership positions. [3]

% of Population Senate House
JEWS 2.2** 13 30
African Americans 12.4 1 42
Hispanics 14.8 3 22
Asians 4.4 2 7

On December 5, barely a week after the Israeli sabotaged Annapolis “meeting”, Representative Lantos held a Congressional hearing on Annapolis and its aftermath. As is customary of Lantos, he only invited two Jewish witnesses, both Pro-Israel—Dennis Ross and David Wurmser–without inviting others who may present a more balanced pro peace pro American viewpoint. In the hearing Lantos supported all of Israel’s pre and post Annapolis pronouncements; all meant to scuttle any pressure on Israel to make peace; something Israel has successfully done since 1948.

Immediately after returning to Israel from the Annapolis meeting, Ehud Olmert, Israel’s Prime Minister embarrassed Bush and Rice by announcing that Israel will build more illegal settlement homes and will not accept Bush’s timetable of an agreement by 2008. The best that Rice can muster was to express her “concern” that this position is not in keeping with the “road map” agreement, something Bush himself declared dead in 2004 by agreeing to all of Sharon’s “concerns”.

The most shocking comments during the hearing came from Representative Mike Pence (R-IN), who stressed that America’s primary objective should be Israel’s security and questioned whether the establishment of a Palestinian state serves that purpose. At no time during the hearing was America’s regional interest discussed, the impact of an Israeli Palestinian peace accord on our current quagmire in Iraq, rather, the hearing repeatedly emphasized Iran’s existential threat to Israel, the world’s fourth most powerful military equipped with over 200 nuclear bombs, and unlike Iran, is not a signatory to the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT).

It is beyond human chutzpah and comprehension that these Israel firsters are able to pursue the exact strategy and process on Iran that led to our devastating invasion of Iraq to eliminate its non-existent WMD’s. When Iraq’s WMD’s were not found Bush’s war justification switched to eliminating a dictator who supports terrorism and destabilizes the region. After the N.I.E. this week issued its report that Iran’s nuclear program was halted in 2003, Defense Secretary Robert Gates’ changed his tactic from attacking Iran on its WMD program to highlighting its threat as a dangerous regime, its support of terrorism and destabilization of the region. IT’S DÉJÀ VU all over again.

Our national short attention span, already disconnected from our government’s suicidal policies, is deliberately diverted by our corporate media toward unbridled consumption, football games, and entertainment scandals to be aware of what vast influence and damage Israel and its Lobby is exacting on our nation; and we dare call ourselves “civilized”. This heartless evil cabal thrives on wars and genocide using American money, weapons, and precious lives as Israel’s weapon of mass destruction.

Only on Pro-Israel issues does our Congress show overwhelming bipartisan support for bills and resolutions paying and praising Israel for its murderous campaigns and invasions of Arab nations. Such lopsided and overwhelming support for Israel is never seen with any issue domestic issues. Bush, and Congress, gladly sent Israel $30 Billion in military aid, but shockingly, Bush wouldn’t agree to spend that same amount to insure the health of America’s poor children.

Case in point, last year’s truly evil and inhumane attack on Lebanon, killing over 1,500 civilians, displacing one million refugees and destroying the nation’s entire infrastructure. The House of Representatives on July 20, 2006 voted 410-8 to unconditionally support Israel’s attack on Lebanon while praising her for “minimizing civilian loss,” despite the overwhelming international evidence to the contrary.

Lantos’ most egregious insult to America, the nation that welcomed, educated, and made him a millionaire and a powerful politician came just three weeks after the terrorism of 9/11.

According to Roll Call, October 1, 2001 (Lantos Controversy): “Rep. Tom Lantos (D-Calif.) raised some eyebrows with an opening statement last week at a hearing meant to foster the peace process between Arabs and Israelis.

Lantos prefaced his remarks by asking everyone in the hearing room to stand for a moment of silence in honor of an Israeli woman who was killed in the latest round of violence in the Middle East”

Many House staffers were outraged that neither Lantos nor other Subcommittee members ever stood in silence for the 9/11 victims.

And so it goes. “Our” Congress acts more like the Israeli Knesset than as representatives of the American people. And why not, our nation is, “ONE NATION UNDER ISRAEL”.
Mohamed Khodr