Moon of Alabama — Oct 21, 2017
In an advertising campaign in 2008 the U.S. Air Force declared itself to be “Above All”. The slogan and symbol of the campaign was similar to the German “Deutschland Über Alles” campaign of 1933. It was a sign of things to come.
On Thursday Masha Gessen watched the press briefing of White House Chief of Staff General John Kelly and concluded:
The press briefing could serve as a preview of what a military coup in this country would look like, for it was in the logic of such a coup that Kelly advanced his four arguments.
- Those who criticize the President don’t know what they’re talking about because they haven’t served in the military. …
- The President did the right thing because he did exactly what his general told him to do. …
- Communication between the President and a military widow is no one’s business but theirs. …
- Citizens are ranked based on their proximity to dying for their country. …
Gessen is late. The coup happened months ago. A military junta is in strong control of White House policies. It is now widening its claim to power.
All along Trump has been the candidate of the military. The other two power centers of the power triangle, the corporate and the executive government (CIA), had gone for Clinton. The Pentagon proxy won over the CIA proxy. (Last months’ fight over Raqqa was similar – with the same outcome.)
On January 20, at the start of the Not-Hillary presidency, I warned:
The military will demand its due beyond the three generals now in Trump’s cabinet.
With the help of media, the generals in the White House defeated their civilian adversary. In August the Trump ship dropped its ideological pilot. Steve Bannon went from the board. Bannon’s militarist enemy, National Security Advisor General McMaster, had won. I stated:
A military junta is now ruling the United States
and later explained:
Trump was seen as a presidential candidate who would possibly move towards a less interventionist foreign policy. That hope is gone. The insurgency that brought Trump to the top was defeated by a counter-insurgency campaign waged by the U.S. military. (Historically its first successful one). The military has taken control of the White House process and it is now taking control of its policies.
Trump’s success as the “Not-Hillary” candidate was based on an anti-establishment insurgency. Representatives of that insurgency, Flynn, Bannon and the MAGA voters, drove him through his first months in office. An intense media campaign was launched to counter them and the military took control of the White House. The anti-establishment insurgents were fired. Trump is now reduced to public figurehead of a stratocracy – a military junta which nominally follows the rule of law.
The military took full control of White House processes and policies:
Everything of importance now passes through the Junta’s hands … To control Trump the Junta filters his information input and eliminates any potential alternative view … The Junta members dictate their policies to Trump by only proposing to him certain alternatives. The one that is most preferable to them will be presented as the only desirable one. “There are no alternatives,” Trump will be told again and again.
With the power center captured the Junta starts to implement its ideology and to suppress any and all criticism against itself.
On Thursday the 19th Kelly criticized Congresswoman Frederica Wilson of South Florida for hearing in on a phone-call Trump made with some dead soldiers wife:
Kelly then continued his criticism of Wilson, mentioning the 2015 dedication of the Miramar FBI building, saying she focused in her speech that she “got the money” for the building.
The video of the Congresswoman’s speech (above link) proves that Kelly’s claim was a fabrication. But one is no longer allowed to point such out. The Junta, by definition, does not lie. The next day journalists asked the White House Press Secretary about Kelly’s unjustified attack. She responded:
MS. SANDERS: If you want to go after General Kelly, that’s up to you. But I think that that — if you want to get into a debate with a four-star Marine general, I think that that’s something highly inappropriate.
It is now “highly inappropriate” to even question the Junta that rules over the empire.
U.S. soldiers, and especially commanding officers, have a well pampered and safe life. Many civilian jobs pay less and are more dangerous. A myth is built around the U.S. military with the help of hundreds of millions in public relations and marketing expenditures. The U.S. military does not win wars, but its soldiers are depicted as being better people than the general population. The soldiers themselves drink from that Kool-Aid. At the end of his press briefing General Kelly belittled everyone who has never been in the military:
Before walking off the stage, Kelly told Americans who haven’t served in the military that he pities them. “We don’t look down upon those of you who haven’t served,” he said. “In fact, in a way we are a little bit sorry because you’ll have never have experienced the wonderful joy you get in your heart when you do the kinds of things our servicemen and women do—not for any other reason than that they love this country.”
‘We do not look down on you. We think of you as a pitiable minor creature.’ What an asshole.
If the soldiers do not work “for any other reason than that they love this country” why do they ask to be paid at all? Why is the public asked to finance 200 military golf courses? Because the soldiers “love the country”?
And imagine the “wonderful joy” Kelly “got in his heart” when he commanded the illegal torture camp of Guantanamo Bay:
Presiding over a population of detainees not charged or convicted of crimes, over whom he had maximum custodial control, Kelly treated them with brutality. His response to the detainees’ peaceful hunger strike in 2013 was punitive force-feeding, solitary confinement, and rubber bullets. Furthermore, he sabotaged efforts by the Obama administration to resettle detainees, consistently undermining the will of his commander in chief.
Former U.S. Army Captain and now CIA director Mike Pompeo was educated at the United States Military Academy at West Point. He is part of the Junta circle, installed to control the competition. Pompeo also wants to again feel the “wonderful joy”. On Friday he promised that the CIA would become “much more vicious agency”. Instead of merely waterboarding ‘terrorists’ and drone-bombing brown families, the CIA will, presumably, now also rape the ‘terrorist’s’ kids and nuke whole villages. Pompeo’s remark was made at a get-together of the Junta and neo-conservative warmongers.
On October 19 Defense Secretary General Mattis was asked in Congress about the recent incident in Niger during which, among others, several U.S. soldiers were killed. Mattis set (vid 5:29 pm) a curious new metric for deploying U.S. troops:
Anytime we commit out troops anywhere it is based on a simple first question and that is – is the well-being of the American people sufficiently enhanced by putting our troops there, by putting our troops in a position to die?
In his October 20 press briefing General Kelly also tried to explain why U.S. soldiers are in Niger:
So why were they there? They’re there working with partners, local — all across Africa — in this case, Niger — working with partners, teaching them how to be better soldiers; teaching them how to respect human rights …
Is the U.S. military really qualified to teach anyone how to respect human rights? Did it learn that from committing mass atrocities in about each campaign it ever fought?
One of the soldiers who was killed in Niger while “teaching how to respect human rights” was a 39 year old “chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear specialist” with “more than a dozen awards and decorations”.
The U.S. military sent a highly qualified WMD specialist on a “routine patrol” in Niger to teach local soldiers “to respect human rights” due to which presumably “the well-being of the American people” would be “sufficiently enhanced”?
Will anyone really buy that bridge?
But who would dare to ask more about this? It is”highly inappropriate” to doubt whatever the military and the Junta says. Soon that will change into “verboten”. Any doubt, any question will be declared “fake news” and a sign of devious foreign influence. Whoever spreads such will be blocked from communicating.
The military is now indeed “Above All”. That air force slogan was a remake of a 1933 “Über Alles” campaign in Germany. One wonders what other historic similarities will develop from that.