Wednesday, April 09, 2014

U.S. Government Snooped On Human Rights Workers : Snowden

In addition to hacking into news bureaus with an assist from Yahoo lackeys


US surveillance whistleblower Edward Snowden has revealed another aspect of Washington's spying programs, saying the NSA snooped on international human rights groups.

Speaking via a videolink from Moscow on Tuesday, Snowden told the Council of Europe in Strasbourg, Europe's top human rights body, that the US National Security Agency had deliberately spied on groups such as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.
"The NSA has specifically targeted either leaders or staff members in a number of civil and non-governmental organizations… including domestically within the borders of the United States," he said.

The council members asked Snowden if Washington snooped on the "highly sensitive and confidential communications" of major human rights bodies like Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch. He replied: "The answer is, without question, yes. Absolutely."

Snowden, a former NSA contractor, began leaking classified intelligence documents in June 2013, revealing the extent of the NSA's spying activities.
Edward Snowden
Snowden leaked two top secret US government spying programs under which the NSA and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) are monitoring millions of American and European phone records and the Internet data from major Internet companies such as Facebook, Yahoo, Google, Apple, and Microsoft.

The disclosures have revealed that the NSA has been collecting the phone records of millions of Americans and foreign nationals as well as political leaders around the world. In August, Russia granted him asylum for one year.

Many regard Snowden as a whistleblower and a national hero for blowing the lid off the US government’s global surveillance operations.


This news bureau contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc.  We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.


NATO Members Conduct False Flag Terror In Attempt o Whip Up War : Turkey Busted for False Flag Terror

Yet another Obama scandal:  TurkeyGate


Pulitzer-prize winning investigative reporter Seymour Hersh (who uncovered the Iraq prison torture scandal and the Mai Lai massacre in Vietnam) says that high-level American sources tell him that the Turkish government carried out the chemical weapons attacks blamed on the Syrian government. 
Indeed, it’s long been known that sarin was coming through Turkey.

Turkey is a member of NATO. So we’re really talking about a NATO member launching a false flag attack against a non-NATO member, and then blaming it on the victim.

Indeed, a new tape recording of top Turkish officials planning a false flag attack to be blamed on Syria as a cassus belli was just leaked a couple of weeks ago, and confirmed by Turkey as being authentic.

In other words, since the last big Turkish false flag didn’t succeed in launching war against Syria, they’re going to try again.

This is not the first false flag by NATO members. For example:
(Italy and other European countries subject to the terror campaign had joined NATO before the bombings occurred). And watch this BBC special:

Quebec police admitted that, in 2007, thugs carrying rocks to a peaceful protest were actually undercover Quebec police officers (see this).
At the G20 protests in London in 2009, a British member of parliament saw plain clothes police officers attempting to incite the crowd to violence. The U.S. has engaged in many false flag attacks (and has been arming the Syrian opposition since 2006 … even though most of the opposition fighters are Al Qaeda terrorists).

This news bureau contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc.  We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.


SEYMOUR HERSH : The Red Line and the Rat Line

Obama criminals continue to be exposed for CIA/FSA Syrian gas attacks

By Seymour Hersh

In 2011 Barack Obama led an allied military intervention in Libya without consulting the US Congress. Last August, after the sarin attack on the Damascus suburb of Ghouta, he was ready to launch an allied air strike, this time to punish the Syrian government for allegedly crossing the ‘red line’ he had set in 2012 on the use of chemical weapons.Then with less than two days to go before the planned strike, he announced that he would seek congressional approval for the intervention. The strike was postponed as Congress prepared for hearings, and subsequently cancelled when Obama accepted Assad’s offer to relinquish his chemical arsenal in a deal brokered by Russia. Why did Obama delay and then relent on Syria when he was not shy about rushing into Libya? The answer lies in a clash between those in the administration who were committed to enforcing the red line, and military leaders who thought that going to war was both unjustified and potentially disastrous. 
Obama’s change of mind had its origins at Porton Down, the defence laboratory in Wiltshire. 
British intelligence had obtained a sample of the sarin used in the 21 August attack and analysis demonstrated that the gas used didn’t match the batches known to exist in the Syrian army’s chemical weapons arsenal. 
The message that the case against Syria wouldn’t hold up was quickly relayed to the US joint chiefs of staff. 
The British report heightened doubts inside the Pentagon; the joint chiefs were already preparing to warn Obama that his plans for a far-reaching bomb and missile attack on Syria’s infrastructure could lead to a wider war in the Middle East. 
As a consequence the American officers delivered a last-minute caution to the president, which, in their view, eventually led to his cancelling the attack.

For months there had been acute concern among senior military leaders and the intelligence community about the role in the war of Syria’s neighbours, especially Turkey. Prime Minister Recep Erdoğan was known to be supporting the al-Nusra Front, a jihadist faction among the rebel opposition, as well as other Islamist rebel groups. ‘We knew there were some in the Turkish government,’ a former senior US intelligence official, who has access to current intelligence, told me, ‘who believed they could get Assad’s nuts in a vice by dabbling with a sarin attack inside Syria – and forcing Obama to make good on his red line threat.’
Obama with mass-murdering poodle Erdogan
The joint chiefs also knew that the Obama administration’s public claims that only the Syrian army had access to sarin were wrong. The American and British intelligence communities had been aware since the spring of 2013 that some rebel units in Syria were developing chemical weapons. On 20 June analysts for the US Defense Intelligence Agency issued a highly classified five-page ‘talking points’ briefing for the DIA’s deputy director, David Shedd, which stated that al-Nusra maintained a sarin production cell: its programme, the paper said, was ‘the most advanced sarin plot since al-Qaida’s pre-9/11 effort’. (According to a Defense Department consultant, US intelligence has long known that al-Qaida experimented with chemical weapons, and has a video of one of its gas experiments with dogs.) The DIA paper went on: ‘Previous IC [intelligence community] focus had been almost entirely on Syrian CW [chemical weapons] stockpiles; now we see ANF attempting to make its own CW … Al-Nusrah Front’s relative freedom of operation within Syria leads us to assess the group’s CW aspirations will be difficult to disrupt in the future.’ 
Erdogan will be tried for war crimes, genocide for Syrian gassing
The paper drew on classified intelligence from numerous agencies: ‘Turkey and Saudi-based chemical facilitators,’ it said, ‘were attempting to obtain sarin precursors in bulk, tens of kilograms, likely for the anticipated large scale production effort in Syria.’ 
(Asked about the DIA paper, a spokesperson for the director of national intelligence said: ‘No such paper was ever requested or produced by intelligence community analysts.’)

Last May, more than ten members of the al-Nusra Front were arrested in southern Turkey with what local police told the press were two kilograms of sarin. In a 130-page indictment the group was accused of attempting to purchase fuses, piping for the construction of mortars, and chemical precursors for sarin. Five of those arrested were freed after a brief detention. The others, including the ringleader, Haytham Qassab, for whom the prosecutor requested a prison sentence of 25 years, were released pending trial. In the meantime the Turkish press has been rife with speculation that the Erdoğan administration has been covering up the extent of its involvement with the rebels. In a news conference last summer, Aydin Sezgin, Turkey’s ambassador to Moscow, dismissed the arrests and claimed to reporters that the recovered ‘sarin’ was merely ‘anti-freeze’.

The DIA paper took the arrests as evidence that al-Nusra was expanding its access to chemical weapons. It said Qassab had ‘self-identified’ as a member of al-Nusra, and that he was directly connected to Abd-al-Ghani, the ‘ANF emir for military manufacturing’. Qassab and his associate Khalid Ousta worked with Halit Unalkaya, an employee of a Turkish firm called Zirve Export, who provided ‘price quotes for bulk quantities of sarin precursors’. Abd-al-Ghani’s plan was for two associates to ‘perfect a process for making sarin, then go to Syria to train others to begin large scale production at an unidentified lab in Syria’. The DIA paper said that one of his operatives had purchased a precursor on the ‘Baghdad chemical market’, which ‘has supported at least seven CW efforts since 2004’.

A series of chemical weapon attacks in March and April 2013 was investigated over the next few months by a special UN mission to Syria. A person with close knowledge of the UN’s activity in Syria told me that there was evidence linking the Syrian opposition to the first gas attack, on 19 March in Khan Al-Assal, a village near Aleppo. In its final report in December, the mission said that at least 19 civilians and one Syrian soldier were among the fatalities, along with scores of injured. It had no mandate to assign responsibility for the attack, but the person with knowledge of the UN’s activities said: ‘Investigators interviewed the people who were there, including the doctors who treated the victims. It was clear that the rebels used the gas. It did not come out in public because no one wanted to know.’

In the months before the attacks began, a former senior Defense Department official told me, the DIA was circulating a daily classified report known as SYRUP on all intelligence related to the Syrian conflict, including material on chemical weapons. But in the spring, distribution of the part of the report concerning chemical weapons was severely curtailed on the orders of Denis McDonough, the White House chief of staff. ‘Something was in there that triggered a shit fit by McDonough,’ the former Defense Department official said. ‘One day it was a huge deal, and then, after the March and April sarin attacks’ – he snapped his fingers – ‘it’s no longer there.’ The decision to restrict distribution was made as the joint chiefs ordered intensive contingency planning for a possible ground invasion of Syria whose primary objective would be the elimination of chemical weapons.

The former intelligence official said that many in the US national security establishment had long been troubled by the president’s red line: ‘The joint chiefs asked the White House, “What does red line mean? How does that translate into military orders? Troops on the ground? Massive strike? Limited strike?” They tasked military intelligence to study how we could carry out the threat. They learned nothing more about the president’s reasoning.’

In the aftermath of the 21 August attack Obama ordered the Pentagon to draw up targets for bombing. Early in the process, the former intelligence official said, ‘the White House rejected 35 target sets provided by the joint chiefs of staff as being insufficiently “painful” to the Assad regime.’ The original targets included only military sites and nothing by way of civilian infrastructure. Under White House pressure, the US attack plan evolved into ‘a monster strike’: two wings of B-52 bombers were shifted to airbases close to Syria, and navy submarines and ships equipped with Tomahawk missiles were deployed. ‘Every day the target list was getting longer,’ the former intelligence official told me. ‘The Pentagon planners said we can’t use only Tomahawks to strike at Syria’s missile sites because their warheads are buried too far below ground, so the two B-52 air wings with two-thousand pound bombs were assigned to the mission. Then we’ll need standby search-and-rescue teams to recover downed pilots and drones for target selection. It became huge.’ The new target list was meant to ‘completely eradicate any military capabilities Assad had’, the former intelligence official said. The core targets included electric power grids, oil and gas depots, all known logistic and weapons depots, all known command and control facilities, and all known military and intelligence buildings.

Britain and France were both to play a part. On 29 August, the day Parliament voted against Cameron’s bid to join the intervention, the Guardian reported that he had already ordered six RAF Typhoon fighter jets to be deployed to Cyprus, and had volunteered a submarine capable of launching Tomahawk missiles. The French air force – a crucial player in the 2011 strikes on Libya – was deeply committed, according to an account in Le Nouvel Observateur; François Hollande had ordered several Rafale fighter-bombers to join the American assault. Their targets were reported to be in western Syria.

By the last days of August the president had given the Joint Chiefs a fixed deadline for the launch. ‘H hour was to begin no later than Monday morning [2 September], a massive assault to neutralise Assad,’ the former intelligence official said. So it was a surprise to many when during a speech in the White House Rose Garden on 31 August Obama said that the attack would be put on hold, and he would turn to Congress and put it to a vote.

At this stage, Obama’s premise – that only the Syrian army was capable of deploying sarin – was unravelling. Within a few days of the 21 August attack, the former intelligence official told me, Russian military intelligence operatives had recovered samples of the chemical agent from Ghouta. They analysed it and passed it on to British military intelligence; this was the material sent to Porton Down. (A spokesperson for Porton Down said: ‘Many of the samples analysed in the UK tested positive for the nerve agent sarin.’ MI6 said that it doesn’t comment on intelligence matters.)

The former intelligence official said the Russian who delivered the sample to the UK was ‘a good source – someone with access, knowledge and a record of being trustworthy’. After the first reported uses of chemical weapons in Syria last year, American and allied intelligence agencies ‘made an effort to find the answer as to what if anything, was used – and its source’, the former intelligence official said. ‘We use data exchanged as part of the Chemical Weapons Convention. The DIA’s baseline consisted of knowing the composition of each batch of Soviet-manufactured chemical weapons. But we didn’t know which batches the Assad government currently had in its arsenal. Within days of the Damascus incident we asked a source in the Syrian government to give us a list of the batches the government currently had. This is why we could confirm the difference so quickly.’

The process hadn’t worked as smoothly in the spring, the former intelligence official said, because the studies done by Western intelligence ‘were inconclusive as to the type of gas it was. The word “sarin” didn’t come up. There was a great deal of discussion about this, but since no one could conclude what gas it was, you could not say that Assad had crossed the president’s red line.’ By 21 August, the former intelligence official went on, ‘the Syrian opposition clearly had learned from this and announced that “sarin” from the Syrian army had been used, before any analysis could be made, and the press and White House jumped at it. Since it now was sarin, “It had to be Assad.”’

The UK defence staff who relayed the Porton Down findings to the joint chiefs were sending the Americans a message, the former intelligence official said: ‘We’re being set up here.’ (This account made sense of a terse message a senior official in the CIA sent in late August: ‘It was not the result of the current regime. UK & US know this.’) By then the attack was a few days away and American, British and French planes, ships and submarines were at the ready.

The officer ultimately responsible for the planning and execution of the attack was General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the joint chiefs. From the beginning of the crisis, the former intelligence official said, the joint chiefs had been sceptical of the administration’s argument that it had the facts to back up its belief in Assad’s guilt. They pressed the DIA and other agencies for more substantial evidence. ‘There was no way they thought Syria would use nerve gas at that stage, because Assad was winning the war,’ the former intelligence official said. Dempsey had irritated many in the Obama administration by repeatedly warning Congress over the summer of the danger of American military involvement in Syria. Last April, after an optimistic assessment of rebel progress by the secretary of state, John Kerry, in front of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Dempsey told the Senate Armed Services Committee that ‘there’s a risk that this conflict has become stalemated.’

Dempsey’s initial view after 21 August was that a US strike on Syria – under the assumption that the Assad government was responsible for the sarin attack – would be a military blunder, the former intelligence official said. The Porton Down report caused the joint chiefs to go to the president with a more serious worry: that the attack sought by the White House would be an unjustified act of aggression. It was the joint chiefs who led Obama to change course. The official White House explanation for the turnabout – the story the press corps told – was that the president, during a walk in the Rose Garden with Denis McDonough, his chief of staff, suddenly decided to seek approval for the strike from a bitterly divided Congress with which he’d been in conflict for years. The former Defense Department official told me that the White House provided a different explanation to members of the civilian leadership of the Pentagon: the bombing had been called off because there was intelligence ‘that the Middle East would go up in smoke’ if it was carried out.

The president’s decision to go to Congress was initially seen by senior aides in the White House, the former intelligence official said, as a replay of George W. Bush’s gambit in the autumn of 2002 before the invasion of Iraq: ‘When it became clear that there were no WMD in Iraq, Congress, which had endorsed the Iraqi war, and the White House both shared the blame and repeatedly cited faulty intelligence. If the current Congress were to vote to endorse the strike, the White House could again have it both ways – wallop Syria with a massive attack and validate the president’s red line commitment, while also being able to share the blame with Congress if it came out that the Syrian military wasn’t behind the attack.’ The turnabout came as a surprise even to the Democratic leadership in Congress. In September the Wall Street Journal reported that three days before his Rose Garden speech Obama had telephoned Nancy Pelosi, leader of the House Democrats, ‘to talk through the options’. She later told colleagues, according to the Journal, that she hadn’t asked the president to put the bombing to a congressional vote.

Obama’s move for congressional approval quickly became a dead end. ‘Congress was not going to let this go by,’ the former intelligence official said. ‘Congress made it known that, unlike the authorisation for the Iraq war, there would be substantive hearings.’ At this point, there was a sense of desperation in the White House, the former intelligence official said. ‘And so out comes Plan B. Call off the bombing strike and Assad would agree to unilaterally sign the chemical warfare treaty and agree to the destruction of all of chemical weapons under UN supervision.’ At a press conference in London on 9 September, Kerry was still talking about intervention: ‘The risk of not acting is greater than the risk of acting.’ But when a reporter asked if there was anything Assad could do to stop the bombing, Kerry said: ‘Sure. He could turn over every single bit of his chemical weapons to the international community in the next week … But he isn’t about to do it, and it can’t be done, obviously.’ As the New York Times reported the next day, the Russian-brokered deal that emerged shortly afterwards had first been discussed by Obama and Putin in the summer of 2012. Although the strike plans were shelved, the administration didn’t change its public assessment of the justification for going to war. ‘There is zero tolerance at that level for the existence of error,’ the former intelligence official said of the senior officials in the White House. ‘They could not afford to say: “We were wrong.”’ (The DNI spokesperson said: ‘The Assad regime, and only the Assad regime, could have been responsible for the chemical weapons attack that took place on 21 August.’)

The full extent of US co-operation with Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar in assisting the rebel opposition in Syria has yet to come to light. The Obama administration has never publicly admitted to its role in creating what the CIA calls a ‘rat line’, a back channel highway into Syria. The rat line, authorised in early 2012, was used to funnel weapons and ammunition from Libya via southern Turkey and across the Syrian border to the opposition. Many of those in Syria who ultimately received the weapons were jihadists, some of them affiliated with al-Qaida. (The DNI spokesperson said: ‘The idea that the United States was providing weapons from Libya to anyone is false.’)

In January, the Senate Intelligence Committee released a report on the assault by a local militia in September 2012 on the American consulate and a nearby undercover CIA facility in Benghazi, which resulted in the death of the US ambassador, Christopher Stevens, and three others. The report’s criticism of the State Department for not providing adequate security at the consulate, and of the intelligence community for not alerting the US military to the presence of a CIA outpost in the area, received front-page coverage and revived animosities in Washington, with Republicans accusing Obama and Hillary Clinton of a cover-up. A highly classified annex to the report, not made public, described a secret agreement reached in early 2012 between the Obama and Erdoğan administrations. It pertained to the rat line. By the terms of the agreement, funding came from Turkey, as well as Saudi Arabia and Qatar; the CIA, with the support of MI6, was responsible for getting arms from Gaddafi’s arsenals into Syria. A number of front companies were set up in Libya, some under the cover of Australian entities. Retired American soldiers, who didn’t always know who was really employing them, were hired to manage procurement and shipping. The operation was run by David Petraeus, the CIA director who would soon resign when it became known he was having an affair with his biographer. (A spokesperson for Petraeus denied the operation ever took place.)

The operation had not been disclosed at the time it was set up to the congressional intelligence committees and the congressional leadership, as required by law since the 1970s. The involvement of MI6 enabled the CIA to evade the law by classifying the mission as a liaison operation. The former intelligence official explained that for years there has been a recognised exception in the law that permits the CIA not to report liaison activity to Congress, which would otherwise be owed a finding. (All proposed CIA covert operations must be described in a written document, known as a ‘finding’, submitted to the senior leadership of Congress for approval.) Distribution of the annex was limited to the staff aides who wrote the report and to the eight ranking members of Congress – the Democratic and Republican leaders of the House and Senate, and the Democratic and Republicans leaders on the House and Senate intelligence committees. This hardly constituted a genuine attempt at oversight: the eight leaders are not known to gather together to raise questions or discuss the secret information they receive.

The annex didn’t tell the whole story of what happened in Benghazi before the attack, nor did it explain why the American consulate was attacked. ‘The consulate’s only mission was to provide cover for the moving of arms,’ the former intelligence official, who has read the annex, said. ‘It had no real political role.’

Washington abruptly ended the CIA’s role in the transfer of arms from Libya after the attack on the consulate, but the rat line kept going. ‘The United States was no longer in control of what the Turks were relaying to the jihadists,’ the former intelligence official said. Within weeks, as many as forty portable surface-to-air missile launchers, commonly known as manpads, were in the hands of Syrian rebels. On 28 November 2012, Joby Warrick of the Washington Post reported that the previous day rebels near Aleppo had used what was almost certainly a manpad to shoot down a Syrian transport helicopter. ‘The Obama administration,’ Warrick wrote, ‘has steadfastly opposed arming Syrian opposition forces with such missiles, warning that the weapons could fall into the hands of terrorists and be used to shoot down commercial aircraft.’ Two Middle Eastern intelligence officials fingered Qatar as the source, and a former US intelligence analyst speculated that the manpads could have been obtained from Syrian military outposts overrun by the rebels. There was no indication that the rebels’ possession of manpads was likely the unintended consequence of a covert US programme that was no longer under US control.

By the end of 2012, it was believed throughout the American intelligence community that the rebels were losing the war. ‘Erdoğan was pissed,’ the former intelligence official said, ‘and felt he was left hanging on the vine. It was his money and the cut-off was seen as a betrayal.’ In spring 2013 US intelligence learned that the Turkish government – through elements of the MIT, its national intelligence agency, and the Gendarmerie, a militarised law-enforcement organisation – was working directly with al-Nusra and its allies to develop a chemical warfare capability. ‘The MIT was running the political liaison with the rebels, and the Gendarmerie handled military logistics, on-the-scene advice and training – including training in chemical warfare,’ the former intelligence official said. ‘Stepping up Turkey’s role in spring 2013 was seen as the key to its problems there. Erdoğan knew that if he stopped his support of the jihadists it would be all over. The Saudis could not support the war because of logistics – the distances involved and the difficulty of moving weapons and supplies. Erdoğan’s hope was to instigate an event that would force the US to cross the red line. But Obama didn’t respond in March and April.’

There was no public sign of discord when Erdoğan and Obama met on 16 May 2013 at the White House. At a later press conference Obama said that they had agreed that Assad ‘needs to go’. Asked whether he thought Syria had crossed the red line, Obama acknowledged that there was evidence such weapons had been used, but added, ‘it is important for us to make sure that we’re able to get more specific information about what exactly is happening there.’ The red line was still intact.

An American foreign policy expert who speaks regularly with officials in Washington and Ankara told me about a working dinner Obama held for Erdoğan during his May visit. The meal was dominated by the Turks’ insistence that Syria had crossed the red line and their complaints that Obama was reluctant to do anything about it. Obama was accompanied by John Kerry and Tom Donilon, the national security adviser who would soon leave the job. Erdoğan was joined by Ahmet Davutoğlu, Turkey’s foreign minister, and Hakan Fidan, the head of the MIT. Fidan is known to be fiercely loyal to Erdoğan, and has been seen as a consistent backer of the radical rebel opposition in Syria.

The foreign policy expert told me that the account he heard originated with Donilon. (It was later corroborated by a former US official, who learned of it from a senior Turkish diplomat.) According to the expert, Erdoğan had sought the meeting to demonstrate to Obama that the red line had been crossed, and had brought Fidan along to state the case. When Erdoğan tried to draw Fidan into the conversation, and Fidan began speaking, Obama cut him off and said: ‘We know.’ Erdoğan tried to bring Fidan in a second time, and Obama again cut him off and said: ‘We know.’ At that point, an exasperated Erdoğan said, ‘But your red line has been crossed!’ and, the expert told me, ‘Donilon said Erdoğan “fucking waved his finger at the president inside the White House”.’ Obama then pointed at Fidan and said: ‘We know what you’re doing with the radicals in Syria.’ (Donilon, who joined the Council on Foreign Relations last July, didn’t respond to questions about this story. The Turkish Foreign Ministry didn’t respond to questions about the dinner. A spokesperson for the National Security Council confirmed that the dinner took place and provided a photograph showing Obama, Kerry, Donilon, Erdoğan, Fidan and Davutoğlu sitting at a table. ‘Beyond that,’ she said, ‘I’m not going to read out the details of their discussions.’)

But Erdoğan did not leave empty handed. Obama was still permitting Turkey to continue to exploit a loophole in a presidential executive order prohibiting the export of gold to Iran, part of the US sanctions regime against the country. In March 2012, responding to sanctions of Iranian banks by the EU, the SWIFT electronic payment system, which facilitates cross-border payments, expelled dozens of Iranian financial institutions, severely restricting the country’s ability to conduct international trade. The US followed with the executive order in July, but left what came to be known as a ‘golden loophole’: gold shipments to private Iranian entities could continue. Turkey is a major purchaser of Iranian oil and gas, and it took advantage of the loophole by depositing its energy payments in Turkish lira in an Iranian account in Turkey; these funds were then used to purchase Turkish gold for export to confederates in Iran. Gold to the value of $13 billion reportedly entered Iran in this way between March 2012 and July 2013.

The programme quickly became a cash cow for corrupt politicians and traders in Turkey, Iran and the United Arab Emirates. ‘The middlemen did what they always do,’ the former intelligence official said. ‘Take 15 per cent. The CIA had estimated that there was as much as two billion dollars in skim. Gold and Turkish lira were sticking to fingers.’ The illicit skimming flared into a public ‘gas for gold’ scandal in Turkey in December, and resulted in charges against two dozen people, including prominent businessmen and relatives of government officials, as well as the resignations of three ministers, one of whom called for Erdoğan to resign. The chief executive of a Turkish state-controlled bank that was in the middle of the scandal insisted that more than $4.5 million in cash found by police in shoeboxes during a search of his home was for charitable donations.

Late last year Jonathan Schanzer and Mark Dubowitz reported in Foreign Policy that the Obama administration closed the golden loophole in January 2013, but ‘lobbied to make sure the legislation … did not take effect for six months’. They speculated that the administration wanted to use the delay as an incentive to bring Iran to the bargaining table over its nuclear programme, or to placate its Turkish ally in the Syrian civil war. The delay permitted Iran to ‘accrue billions of dollars more in gold, further undermining the sanctions regime’.

The American decision to end CIA support of the weapons shipments into Syria left Erdoğan exposed politically and militarily. ‘One of the issues at that May summit was the fact that Turkey is the only avenue to supply the rebels in Syria,’ the former intelligence official said. ‘It can’t come through Jordan because the terrain in the south is wide open and the Syrians are all over it. And it can’t come through the valleys and hills of Lebanon – you can’t be sure who you’d meet on the other side.’ Without US military support for the rebels, the former intelligence official said, ‘Erdoğan’s dream of having a client state in Syria is evaporating and he thinks we’re the reason why. When Syria wins the war, he knows the rebels are just as likely to turn on him – where else can they go? So now he will have thousands of radicals in his backyard.’

A US intelligence consultant told me that a few weeks before 21 August he saw a highly classified briefing prepared for Dempsey and the defense secretary, Chuck Hagel, which described ‘the acute anxiety’ of the Erdoğan administration about the rebels’ dwindling prospects. The analysis warned that the Turkish leadership had expressed ‘the need to do something that would precipitate a US military response’. By late summer, the Syrian army still had the advantage over the rebels, the former intelligence official said, and only American air power could turn the tide. In the autumn, the former intelligence official went on, the US intelligence analysts who kept working on the events of 21 August ‘sensed that Syria had not done the gas attack. But the 500 pound gorilla was, how did it happen? The immediate suspect was the Turks, because they had all the pieces to make it happen.’

As intercepts and other data related to the 21 August attacks were gathered, the intelligence community saw evidence to support its suspicions. ‘We now know it was a covert action planned by Erdoğan’s people to push Obama over the red line,’ the former intelligence official said. ‘They had to escalate to a gas attack in or near Damascus when the UN inspectors’ – who arrived in Damascus on 18 August to investigate the earlier use of gas – ‘were there. The deal was to do something spectacular. Our senior military officers have been told by the DIA and other intelligence assets that the sarin was supplied through Turkey – that it could only have gotten there with Turkish support. The Turks also provided the training in producing the sarin and handling it.’ Much of the support for that assessment came from the Turks themselves, via intercepted conversations in the immediate aftermath of the attack. ‘Principal evidence came from the Turkish post-attack joy and back-slapping in numerous intercepts. Operations are always so super-secret in the planning but that all flies out the window when it comes to crowing afterwards. There is no greater vulnerability than in the perpetrators claiming credit for success.’ Erdoğan’s problems in Syria would soon be over: ‘Off goes the gas and Obama will say red line and America is going to attack Syria, or at least that was the idea. But it did not work out that way.’

The post-attack intelligence on Turkey did not make its way to the White House. ‘Nobody wants to talk about all this,’ the former intelligence official told me. ‘There is great reluctance to contradict the president, although no all-source intelligence community analysis supported his leap to convict. There has not been one single piece of additional evidence of Syrian involvement in the sarin attack produced by the White House since the bombing raid was called off. My government can’t say anything because we have acted so irresponsibly. And since we blamed Assad, we can’t go back and blame Erdoğan.’

Turkey’s willingness to manipulate events in Syria to its own purposes seemed to be demonstrated late last month, a few days before a round of local elections, when a recording, allegedly of Erdoğan and his associates, was posted to YouTube. It included discussion of a false-flag operation that would justify an incursion by the Turkish military in Syria. The operation centred on the tomb of Suleyman Shah, the grandfather of the revered Osman I, founder of the Ottoman Empire, which is near Aleppo and was ceded to Turkey in 1921, when Syria was under French rule. One of the Islamist rebel factions was threatening to destroy the tomb as a site of idolatry, and the Erdoğan administration was publicly threatening retaliation if harm came to it. According to a Reuters report of the leaked conversation, a voice alleged to be Fidan’s spoke of creating a provocation: ‘Now look, my commander [Erdoğan], if there is to be justification, the justification is I send four men to the other side. I get them to fire eight missiles into empty land [in the vicinity of the tomb]. That’s not a problem. Justification can be created.’ The Turkish government acknowledged that there had been a national security meeting about threats emanating from Syria, but said the recording had been manipulated. The government subsequently blocked public access to YouTube.

Barring a major change in policy by Obama, Turkey’s meddling in the Syrian civil war is likely to go on. ‘I asked my colleagues if there was any way to stop Erdoğan’s continued support for the rebels, especially now that it’s going so wrong,’ the former intelligence official told me. ‘The answer was: “We’re screwed.” We could go public if it was somebody other than Erdoğan, but Turkey is a special case. They’re a Nato ally. The Turks don’t trust the West. They can’t live with us if we take any active role against Turkish interests. If we went public with what we know about Erdoğan’s role with the gas, it’d be disastrous. The Turks would say: “We hate you for telling us what we can and can’t do.”

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"Mainstream Media" Blacks Out Seymour Hersh Exposé Of US Lies On Syrian Gas Attack

Syrian gas attack committed by CIA/FSA mercenaries

By Patrick Martin

Nearly two days after the London Review of Books published a lengthy exposé by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh detailing efforts by the Turkish government to stage a provocation to bring the US military directly into the civil war in Syria, the US media has blacked out the report. 
Obama's CIA/FSA mercs with gas launcher
Hersh, who has authored groundbreaking investigative reports uncovering US atrocities, including the My Lai massacre during the Vietnam War and the torture of prisoners at Abu Ghraib during the Iraq war, titled his article on last August’s sarin gas attack outside of Damascus “The Red Line and the Rat Line.”

The “red line” refers to President Obama’s threat to attack Syria if the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad used chemical weapons. 
The “rat line” was a CIA-organized supply chain running from Benghazi, Libya through southern Turkey and into Syria, which was used to smuggle weapons to the Syrian “rebels.”

The article describes efforts by the Turkish government of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan to assist Syrian “rebels” of the al-Nusra Front, an Islamist force linked to Al Qaeda, in staging the poison gas attack on Ghouta on August 21, 2013.
Hundreds died in the atrocity, which the Obama White House seized on as a casus belli to bomb Syria. 
Faced with deep divisions within the American state and problems mobilizing US allies in Europe, and broad popular opposition to a new war in the Middle East, Obama eventually pulled back and in September accepted a face-saving deal brokered by Russian President Vladimir Putin for the supervised destruction of Syria’s chemical weapons stocks. 

The Syrian government denied responsibility for the Ghouta attack and blamed the “rebels,” who had every reason to carry out the action, which coincided with the arrival of United Nations weapons inspectors in Damascus to investigate previous gas attacks. At the time of the attack, Syrian government forces were retaking areas previously held by the US-backed opposition, which was in disarray and on the point of collapse. It desperately needed a supposed government atrocity to provide a pretext for direct US military intervention against the Assad regime.

Hersh’s report substantiates the Syrian government’s claims, using documents and accounts from US intelligence and military sources. It also provides evidence that President Obama, Secretary of State John Kerry and other US officials knowingly lied to the American people when they insisted that only the Assad regime could have carried out the Ghouta attack and that US intelligence agencies had proof that Syrian government forces were responsible. (See: New exposé by Seymour Hersh: Turkey staged gas attack to provoke US war on Syria).
Erdogan with master Obama
Last December, Hersh published an initial account of the Ghouta attack, which noted the discrepancies and contradictions in the official US accounts and exposed media propaganda such as the now-retracted claim by the New York Times that its own technical analysis of the attack proved that only the Syrian military could have fired the gas shells. Hersh’s conclusion at that time, reflected in the headline “Whose Sarin?” was that it was still unclear who was responsible for the gas attack.

The latest account provides an important new finding—that the Turkish government worked with the al-Nusra Front to engineer the gas attack and blame it on Assad in order to provide a means for the Obama administration to override popular opposition to another US war in the Middle East and launch military action in Syria.

A former intelligence official told Hersh, “We now know it was a covert action planned by Erdogan’s people to push Obama over the red line … They had to escalate to a gas attack in or near Damascus … The deal was to do something spectacular.” 
Syrian child gassed by Obama's CIA/FSA mass murderers
Hersh has been unable to get his reports published by major American media outlets. 
Both of his Syrian exposés appeared in the online edition of the London Review of Books, not in the New Yorker, where he was published for many years, or any daily newspaper. Since the new article was posted early Sunday morning, there has been total silence in the mainstream US press. 
The New York Times and Washington Post, the two leading dailies, said nothing. The Times published a long account Monday of fighting in Syria with no mention of Hersh’s report.

The main British dailies have also been silent. The Guardian, in addition to censoring Hersh, published a long account of a self-justifying interview on BBC Radio 4 by the notorious liar and war criminal Tony Blair, the former prime minister, defending the Iraq war and advocating military action in Syria. 
CIA/FSA gas victims
The article, written by the newspaper’s chief political correspondent Nicholas Watt, goes so far as to note Blair’s argument that the use of sarin gas at Ghouta was sufficient reason to attack Syria, without referencing Hersh’s exposure of this attack as a provocation, published just 24 hours earlier. The cover-up is conscious and deliberate.

The Turkish media has commented on the Hersh report with a blizzard of vituperation and attempts to defend the Erdogan government. This comes despite the fact that the government recently shut off access to YouTube after someone posted a video of a secret meeting of government officials at which the head of Turkish intelligence discussed staging another provocation inside Syria, such as an attack on a mosque, to provide a pretext for military intervention. 

The web site of the Turkish newspaper Zaman published an email sent by the White House press office Sunday night, which read: “We have seen Mr. Hersh’s latest story, which is based solely on information from unnamed sources and which reaches conclusions about the August 21 chemical weapons attack in Syria that are completely off-base.” Zaman also cites “Turkish diplomatic sources” declaring, “These claims are baseless. We do not take it seriously.” 
CIA Al Jazeera whore Shiulie Ghosh covers for CIA/FSA mecs
The left-liberal magazine Nation commented briefly on Hersh’s first article on the Ghouta attack last December. The article by Greg Mitchell took a noncommittal position, declaring, “Hersh’s edgy investigative reporting is usually proven right, of course, but in recent years, one must admit, sometimes wrong. For myself, I’ve never claimed a belief that rebels, not the Assad forces, launched the attacks …” The Nation has not commented on the latest Hersh report.

Also silent is the pseudo-left International Socialist Organization, which has campaigned relentlessly to portray the US stooges and Al Qaeda-linked terrorists in the Syrian “rebel” camp as a mass popular revolutionary movement. The ISO publication Socialist Worker swallowed the Ghouta provocation hook, line and sinker, and has not reported or commented on either of Hersh’s exposés on the question.

The author also recommends:

Seymour Hersh exposes US government lies on Syrian sarin attack.  [10 December 2013]

This news bureau contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc.  We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.


Tragedy at Fort Hood : Will Violence Increase As More War Weary Veterans Return?


By Charlene Muhammad

The mental and emotional toll of combat from America’s wars in Afghanistan and Iraq on military service personnel is once again center stage after the latest shooting by an Army specialist on a U.S. military base. Army Specialist Ivan Lopez, 34, has been identified as the gunman in the April 2 shooting that left four dead and 16 wounded, including the shooter in Fort Hood, Texas. 
Milley ultimately responsible for shootings on his watch
Investigators are blaming unstable mental health as a fundamental cause of the shooting.

But Spc. Ivan Lopez’ actions have spun America into yet another national debate on gun violence when the dialogue belongs on quality mental health treatment in the military, argue activists.

Veterans’ advocates and activists say the incessant refusal by some politicians and corporate media to acknowledge the untreated mental illness soldiers experience during and after war combat feeds the violent fall-out caused by wars undergirded by America’s foreign policy.

An Army truck driver from Puerto Rico, Spc. Lopez was undergoing treatment for depression and anxiety while being evaluated for post-traumatic stress disorder, base officials said.
Ft. Hood shooter Ivan Lopez
Mr. Lopez walked into a base building around 4 p.m., April 2 and began firing a .45-caliber semi-automatic pistol.
He then got into a vehicle and continued shooting before entering another building on the Army post.
He eventually was confronted by military police in a parking lot, Lt. Gen. Mark Milley, senior officer at the nation’s largest Army base, said.
But Spc. Ivan Lopez’ actions have spun America into yet another national debate on gun violence when the dialogue belongs on quality mental health treatment in the military, argue activists.
Veterans’ advocates and activists say the incessant refusal by some politicians and corporate media to acknowledge the untreated mental illness soldiers experience during and after war combat feeds the violent fall-out caused by wars undergirded by America’s foreign policy.

An Army truck driver from Puerto Rico, Spc. Lopez was undergoing treatment for depression and anxiety while being evaluated for post-traumatic stress disorder, base officials said.

Mr. Lopez walked into a base building around 4 p.m., April 2 and began firing a .45-caliber semi-automatic pistol. He then got into a vehicle and continued shooting before entering another building on the Army post. He eventually was confronted by military police in a parking lot, Lt. Gen. Mark Milley, senior officer at the nation’s largest Army base, said.

As he came within 20 feet of a police officer, Mr. Lopez put his hands up but then reached under his jacket and pulled out his gun. The officer drew her own weapon, and the suspect put his gun to his head and pulled the trigger a final time, Lt. Gen. Milley said.
Veterans now committing suicide at rate of 22 per day
“When it happened, I thought this was again the ghosts of the Iraq War showing themselves and I look at this in terms of the beginning of more of the problems we’ll see emerging since the Iraq War ended,” said Michael Prysner, an Iraq War veteran with the ANSWER (Act Now to End War and Racism) Coalition. He advocates for better health treatment for veterans.

The shootings occurred just five years after then Army psychiatrist Major Nidal M. Hasan, killed 13 and wounded 39 more at Fort Hood in November 2009. Mr. Nidal was convicted and sentenced to death last year in August. 
Mr. Prysner said military officials and politicians are erroneously stating that since Mr. Lopez wasn’t really in combat in Iraq and that it’s not clear he had Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) which may have contributed to his actions.

But all of this comes on the heels of the Army’s own study that the crisis in mental health care stems from soldiers joining with those issues, he said. “All of this is an attempt to try to shift the blame, but the reality is it doesn’t matter what the source of someone’s trauma is. When you sign up for the military, you’re putting yourself in care of the military and you have no one else to care for you,” Mr. Prysner told The Final Call.

“Those in the care of the military’s mental health system are in such a desperate and humiliating situation that it’s driving many to suicide. It drives many to madness, and I think that as the facts come out, we’ll see that Ivan Lopez is tied into this type of unit or going through this process that probably played a factor in his psychological break,” he continued. 
While mainstream media and politicians deny it, the Lopez shooting definitely stems from PTSD, activists say.

In a statement released by the family of Mr. Lopez, who live in Puerto Rico, he is described as a “calm family man who always looked out for the well-being of his home and a good son.”

According to Ivan Lopez, Sr. his father, the younger Mr. Lopez was under medical treatment said the statement. The death of his mother, grandfather, transferring military bases “surely affected his existing condition because of his experiences as a soldier,” the statement continued.

According to the PTSD Foundation of America, about 30 percent of the men and women who have spent time in war zones experience PTSD and an additional 20 to 25 percent have had partial PTSD at some point in their lives. 
Referred to as the “unseen wounds of war” by the foundation, PTSD occurs not just in military circumstances, but after life-threatening events including natural disasters, serious accidents, or physical or sexual assault, whether as adults or children.

Those with the psychiatric disorder often relive a past trauma and become upset, avoid people or places that remind them of that trauma or they feel guarded, irritable or are easily startled, say experts. The PTSD Foundation of America organization states on its website that PTSD has been detected among veterans of other several wars. “Estimates of PTSD from the Gulf War are as high as 10%. Estimates from the war in Afghanistan are between 6 and 11%. 
Current estimates of PTSD in military personnel who served in Iraq range from 12% to 20%,” notes 
Obviously Spc. Lopez had some psychological issues and shouldn’t have been in the Army, but that speaks to the great negligence of the Army with soldiers who have mental health issues, Mr. Prysner argued. 

He noted that Spc. Lopez was in the Warrior Transition Brigade Unit at Fort Hood, which is a unit that exists for physically or psychologically wounded soldiers that are disabled and facing discharge from the military. They’re to receive treatment and care in the unit while they’re being processed out of the military, he explained. But life in the brigade during that transition is abysmal, stated Mr. Prysner, who said he’s visited several such brigades across the country.

“It takes years and years and years possibly for the process to go through and so all the soldiers who are waiting to get their lives back on track and to move on from what they’ve been through are stuck in this system that seems like it has no end in sight,” he said. 
Mr. Prysner argued the shootings stem from a type of terrorism that can be blamed on military commanders and soldiers’ chain of command for creating the conditions that cause such atrocities. 
“There have been many, many thousands of young men and women who have joined the military with the best of intentions and were chewed up and spit out as completely different people, and we’re seeing record numbers kill themselves and smaller isolated incidents of extreme violence,” Mr. Prysner added. The ANSWER Coalition is calling on President Barack Obama to declare an emergency situation to expedite those awaiting processing and begin a complete overhaul of the mental health system.

“That’s what’s needed and as long as the government is refusing to do that they’re going to continue to have massacres like this and they’re going to continue to have 22 veterans a day killing themselves,” Mr. Prysner told The Final Call, referring to a 2012 study released by the Department of Veterans Affairs. 

According to the “Suicide Data Report, 2012,” 22 veterans a day committed suicide in 2010. The report was drafted by Dr. Janet Kemp, a registered nurse, and Dr. Robert Bossarte also under the auspices of Mental Health Services, and Suicide Prevention Program.

Its statistics are based on a four-year study (2009-2012) of cases where military service was reported, but only includes information from the first 21 states that contributed data. That excludes California and Texas, which have larger veteran populations, the authors explained. 
Advocates like the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America is pushing for The Suicide Prevention for America’s Act, introduced by Senator John Walsh, the first Iraq veteran in the Senate.

In part, the act would improve access to care for troops and veterans by extending combat eligibility, review wrongful discharges (of troops who struggle with mental health issues and discharged for unseen issues), and improve mental health care and suicide prevention programs by requiring an annual review of programs in the Department of Defense and Veterans Association. Without drastic changes, Dr. Umar Abdullah Johnson believes the problem will worsen. “I am not surprised. This is becoming a trend now, of individuals who are affiliated with one branch of the Armed Services or another,” he stated.

He said the problem stems from three reasons. America has a shortage of recruits so it’s targeting anyone it can to enter the military and ignoring people’s mental illness or their pre-disposition to mental illness. 
Others develop mental illness because of the military’s unnatural nature, its isolated and strict culture, and own governance and court process. And, individuals coming back from combat, whether they participated directly or were exposed, affects the human brain, which isn’t designed to cope with that type of trauma on a regular basis said the noted author and activist. “The sad thing about it is there are going to be more of them. The government, Congress, even the Senate, rarely investigates the military because the military is the bottom line,” Dr. Johnson said. “When your whole status as a world superpower, as an international oppressor rests on the shoulders of your military and the people who lead it, you’re not likely to question or hear issues of human rights in the military,” he continued.

The government’s solution is giving speeches about pulling the troops but funding is funneled to defense contractors and the military industrial complex, activists contend.

The Iraq and Afghanistan wars combined will be the most expensive wars in U.S. history, totaling between $4 to $6 trillion, according to Linda Bilmes, senior lecturer in Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School.

Those costs include long-term medical care and disability compensation for service members, veterans and families, military replenishment and social and economic costs. 

“The largest portion of that bill is yet to be paid,” Ms. Bilmes wrote in “The Financial Legacy of Iraq and Afghanistan: How Wartime Spending Decisions Will Constrain Future National Security Budgets,” released March 2013.

According to her report, since 2001, the U.S. has expanded the quality, quantity, availability and eligibility of benefits for military personnel and veterans, and that’s led to unprecedented growth in the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Defense budgets. And those benefits will increase over the next 40 years, Ms. Bilmes indicated.

“Additional funds are committed to replacing large quantities of basic war equipment and to support ongoing diplomatic presence and military assistance in the Iraq and Afghanistan region, and the large sums borrowed to finance operations there will impose substantial long-term debt servicing costs,” Ms. Bilmes continued.

This news bureau contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc.  We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.





On Tuesday April 8 2014, The 5th Estate came under a sustained massive DOS attack through Yahoo servers.

Yahoo continues to allow NSA to spy on Americans
This followed dozens of death threats initiated in the United States by retired and active duty military officers and SNCO's following 5th Estate coverage of the Ft. Hood Shootings.

Should these threats not cease immediately The 5th Estate will respond by publishing those that were signed, including empty threats dating back through the years guaranteeing a swift end to more than a few careers while needlessly tarnishing reputations by pouring gasoline on an already raging media fire surrounding the Ft. Hood tragedy.

The Yahoo hackers then moved on to disable the Zone Alarm Pro and SMADAV automatic virus updates on 5th Estate computers, open ports and disable firewall commands. These breaches were manually closed and firewalls are once more viable, this time with auto alarms in place to instantly notify of attempted breaches of individual ports and security protocols.

Yahoo was contacted immediately and the accounts affected were repeatedly requested to be closed over a 24 hour period with no response.

Yahoo ignored these requests completely, refused The 5th Estate access to the accounts and then allowed the hackers to continue to utilize them to attack the bureau despite repeated written warnings that the accounts had been compromised and unlocked.

Yahoo users are urged to CHANGE PASSWORDS IMMEDIATELY. Do not accept any communications from supposed Yahoo administrators without verification.

It is now quite apparent who Yahoo works for and with. They are clearly under the auspices of the NSA and continue to allow U.S. government free and total access to user accounts.

It goes without saying that Yahoo is a rogue company, traitors to America and Americans.

A class action suit by the millions of Yahoo users who have had their accounts hacked and spied upon by the NSA and other "OGA" should be immediately initiated and pursued.

The 5th Estate urges all Yahoo users to BOYCOTT ALL MONETARY TRANSACTIONS with Yahoo and their affiliates, advertisers and business partners.

The 5th Estate now believes that the bogus "data breach" story was initiated by Yahoo in order to cover for their eventual exposure in allowing the NSA and Obama government stooges to illegally access yahoo user accounts, thereby being able to claim that it was a result of an external hacking.

A recap of the Yahoo date breach from RT:

Yahoo! Mail hacked, passwords and user info nabbed


Hackers broke into Yahoo!’s free email service, stealing the passwords and usernames of an undisclosed number of the firm’s 273 million accounts worldwide.

Yahoo continues to spy on Americans
The company disclosed scant details of the coordinated hack attack, saying it had teamed up with federal law enforcement in the US, where 81 million accounts are registered, to investigate the security breach.

In a blog post on the company’s site, Yahoo! said "the information sought in the attack seems to be names and email addresses from the
affected accounts' most recent sent emails."

Yahoo! said it recently discovered the breach, and suspects that malware was employed to take the user information from an undisclosed third party database.

"We have no evidence that they were obtained directly from Yahoo!'s systems," wrote Jay Rossiter, the senior vice president in charge of Yahoo!’s platforms and personalization products.

Apart from seeking out and ultimately prosecuting those responsible for the attack, Rossiter said Yahoo! had “implemented additional measures to block attacks against Yahoo!’s systems.”

The company also reset the passwords of those affected, and sent out text messages to them so that they could “re-secure their accounts.”

Yahoo! is reportedly the second-largest worldwide email service, after Google's Gmail, making it a likely target for hackers and online scammers.

The firm recognized this threat, acknowledging “security attacks are unfortunately becoming a more regular occurrence.”

"It's an old trend, but it's much more exaggerated now because the programs the bad guys use are much more sophisticated now," Avivah Litan, a security analyst at the technology research firm Gartner, told AP. "We're clearly under attack."

Analysts said that access to email accounts is part and parcel of more serious breaches which target online banking and shopping. Security experts have warned users against using one password across multiple sites, although this does not account for the problem of email accounts being used to reset passwords.

For example, hackers could attempt to log into a user’s bank account and ask for a password reminder to be sent by email.

Collecting as much information about an individual as possible also facilitates identity theft.

In December, a hardware outage in one of Yahoo!’s storage systems left around 1 million users without access to their email accounts. 

This news bureau contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc.  We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.




The real truth on 9/11 slowly continues to bleed out

Technical experts are mounting major challenges to official U.S. government accounts of how three World Trade Center skyscrapers collapsed in near-freefall after the 9/11 attacks 15 years ago.

Many researchers are focusing especially on the little-known collapse of



The Geopolitics Of The United States, Part 1: The Inevitable Empire

The Empire and the inevitable fall of the Obama criminal regime

STRATFOR Editor’s Note: This installment on the United States, presented in two parts, is the 16th in a series of STRATFOR monographs on the geopolitics of countries influential in world affairs.

Like nearly all of the peoples of North and South America, most Americans are not originally from the territory that became the United States.



Geopolitics Of The United States Part 2: American Identity And The Threats of Tomorrow

A look back at 2011 predictions for the future in order to put events of today into perspective

 photo capitalism_zpsah78uy5p.jpg
We have already discussed in the first part of this analysis how the American geography dooms whoever controls the territory to being a global power, but there are a number of other outcomes that shape what that power will be like. The first and most critical is the impact of that geography on the American mindset.



By Robert S. Finnegan

This e-mail outlines and confirms the acts of espionage against Indonesia and Indonesians by Akiko Makino and the others involved both in Kobe University and in AI Lab at University of Airlangga, Surabaya; Bahasa Indonesia original follows English translation...



UPDATED 01/07/2015 : New Analysis Challenges Tamiflu Efficacy; Hong Kong Corona Virus Outbreak


 photo TAMIFLU_small_zpssojx6okt.jpg

Obama criminals now resulting to biowarfare in quest to destroy Chinese and ASEAN economy; "novel virus substrain" points directly to a Kawaoka / Fouchier / Ernala-Ginting Kobe lab virus weaponized and genetically altered to specifically target and infect the Asian population: Ribavirin...



 photo WHO02_zpsplmhtlpr.jpg
The 5th Estate has just purchased a library on H5N1 "Novel" virus pandemics, there are dozens of PDF and Exel documents we feel will assist you in saving lives following intentional releases of the H5N1 and now MERS viruses; we will begin by printing those that appear to be extremely relevant here: H5N1 Kobe-Kawaoka-Ernala series continues soon with more "Smoking Gun" e-mails from Teridah Ernala to The 5th Estate . . .



By Robert S. Finnegan

On October 12, 2002 the Indonesian island of Bali experienced a terrorist attack that rocked the world. It was unquestionably well-coordinated and executed, the largest in the country's history.