Obama’s War on Truth 187


The four USAF military drone operators who recently blew the whistle and exposed the callousness and complete lack of concern for civilian casualties of the US drone assassination programme, (and received very little mainstream media exposure), yesterday found their bank accounts and credit cards all blocked by the US government. The effects of that on daily life are devastating. My source is their lawyer, Jesselyn Radack, through the Sam Adams Associates (of which we are both members).

No criminal charges have been brought against any of the men, despite numerous written threats of prosecution. Their finances appear to have been frozen by executive action under anti-terrorist legislation. This is yet a further glaring example of the use of “anti-terror” powers against people who are not remotely terrorist.

More whistleblowers have been jailed under Obama than under all previous US Presidents combined. Even so, the US authorities seem wary of the publicity that might surround prosecution of these servicemen, who only spoke of the effect upon their own health of having repeatedly to carry out heartless and often untargeted killings.

So their lives are being destroyed in other ways. You will forgive me for recalling that I know how they feel because I have been through just the same thing myself.

When I blew the whistle on UK complicity in torture and extraordinary rendition, I received numerous written threats from the FCO under the Official Secrets Act, and for a while I lived in daily expectation of arrest. Still more hurtful were the constant denials from Jack Straw and his repeated assertion that the UK was never complicit in torture, that there was no such thing as extraordinary rendition, together with the frequent imputations to journalists and politicians that I was in poor mental health and an alcoholic. I never had my bank account suspended, but there were interventions with prospective employers that prevented my getting another job.

Still, I had it easy. Chelsea Manning will celebrate her birthday in jail on 17 December.

It is worth recalling what these drone operators told us:

Bryant said the killing of civilians by drone is exacerbating the problem of terrorism. “We kill four and create 10 [militants],” Bryant said. “If you kill someone’s father, uncle or brother who had nothing to do with anything, their families are going to want revenge.”

The Obama administration has gone to great lengths to keep details of the drone program secret, but in their statements today the former operators opened up about the culture that has developed among those responsible for carrying it out. Haas said operators become acculturated to denying the humanity of the people on their targeting screens. “There was a much more detached outlook about who these people were we were monitoring,” he said. “Shooting was something to be lauded and something we should strive for.”

The deaths of children and other non-combatants in strikes was rationalized by many drone operators, Haas said. As a flight instructor, Haas claimed to have been non-judicially reprimanded by his superiors for failing a student who had expressed “bloodlust,” an overwhelming eagerness to kill.

Haas also described widespread alcohol and drug abuse among drone pilots. Drone operators, he said, would frequently get intoxicated using bath salts and synthetic marijuana to avoid possible drug testing and in an effort to “bend that reality and try to picture yourself not being there.” Haas said that he knew at least a half-dozen people in his unit who were using bath salts and that drug use had “impaired” them during missions.


187 thoughts on “Obama’s War on Truth

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  • Laguerre

    re Habba whatever at 10.05.

    Evidently you don’t understand French politics. I’m not surprised.

  • Laguerre

    Evidently Habba-whatever is out to troll any opinion. I understand that he’s been there a long time, but in most blogs he would have been banned long ago. Craig is very tolerant

  • giyane

    Monteverdi

    Working with Assad? I remember them working with Gaddafi and Saddam, and tea in Paris with Milosevic. Didn’t Assad service the requirements of Jack Straw’s rendition program?
    The difference between working with Assad and working with Al Qaida is purely in the formalities about whose head is served on the platter first.

    Weird how Tory MPs still don’t seem to know who’s going to be put in charge of the post-Assad, post Al Qaida/Daesh Syria. Are we going to get 70000 Africans, or 70000 Ukranians, or 70000 Malaysians? Maybe 70000 banned Muslim Brotherhood Egyptians could play pass the parcel bomb while the Syrian refugees get back to normality.

  • Why be Ordinary

    Laguerre

    Craig writes his blog for people to read what he writes. The comments section rarely has any bearing on this, so I would guess that he is past caring even if he did believe in banning people, which he does not.

  • RobG

    @Tony_0pmoc
    27 Nov, 2015 – 11:01 pm

    I think you’re quite correct about the lack of digital evidence (photos/movies) of the Paris attacks.

    One notable thing about the London bombings in 2005 was that it was the first time that mobile phone footage was prominent in news reports of the event. In fact, news organisations like the BBC and Sky were screaming for the public to send them mobile phone footage.

    That all changed shortly after.

    Now you only get carefully edited stuff from the general public. The vast bulk of it is censored from video sharing sites.

  • nevermind

    Thanks anon 0, refreshing and concise, what’s the chances we’ll get an anon 2? will normal math resume, you reckon?

  • Tony_0pmoc

    RobG,

    ” The vast bulk of it is censored from video sharing sites.”

    That is simply not true.

    Incidentally I had the idea for youtube before youtube…and even registered a domain to do it..and then I thought – I would get my bollocks sued off me copyright and everything..so I didn’t do it…

    Basically anyone can post wtf they want on youtube…sure it might get deleted later – for all kinds of reasons…but if I had been there at the Bataclan.. and survived..and I do go to a lot of gigs…if I survived it..it would be on the internet before I got home (well at least a bit of it..well in theory I could – my mobile does 4G as does my wife’s – she’d get it up on the way home on the bus)

    Tony

  • RobG

    Tony, do a search on YouTube with regard to the Paris attacks and I’m not sure how you can say that citizen’s footage is not censored?

    Maybe I’m missing something?

    Oh, and Habba, the French invented the guillotine.

    Have you had a shave today, whether you are male or female?

  • Daniel

    Bombs and drones are counterproductive but the establishment want it that way because, for them, terrorist retaliation justifies the further use of bombs and drones.

  • fedup

    Fedup, your comments seem directed at me mainly for daring to post on a site generally reserved for a clique who spend most of their time, irrespective of topic, debating Israel, Palestine and conspiracy theories.

    Regardless of the weird and wonderful profile management software creating all manner of false persona with the relevant false credentials these software cannot fix stupid hasbaraista!

    The above setting the tone, then the rest of the stooges pile in harrumphing away, after all tenner a day for spamming this board is not for creativity of the spam but the quantity!

    Thrown in are the usual sound bites of the heroes as the zionistani thugs in uniform are press ganged/shanghaied/conscripted into the vigilante club passed as armed forces hence the need for buttering them up with “nations gratitude” cock and bull yarns.

    In UK the armed forces are volunteers and no need to butter them up they get bloody well paid for what they do and no one forced them into the forces. In their contract of employment there is no clause that they should be adored and treated as celebrities.

    Fact that some lard arse political sharp operator started to use these as the proverbial sand bags to hide behind and shove their wasteful and bloody wars as the struggle of these “convenient heroes” and the Oligarch Owned Media promoted this notion which is now being reinforced by the paid stooges who are busy repatriating the “aid pounds” back to our economy for the benefit of zionistan and its sponsors presiding in the seats of power.

    Killing and maiming is not honourable, brave or heroic, but I tell what is heroic! Heroic is to sweep the streets come rain or shine for a pittance, and raise a family! Heroic is to work all the hours god sends in the garage in dirt, oil and cold for a pittance and go hungry during the day because it is either lunch or shoes for the kids?

    But this is not the line of march of the heroes, instead we are told the “fun size terrorist” killing xbox players come drone operators sitting in their comfortable cockpits on the ground working shifts with tea breaks and toilet breaks to boot, are the heroes and must be worshipped as mandated by some two bit tossers earning a tenner and spaming this board!

  • Silvio

    4 Examples of Mainstream Media Fabricating News to Push for War
    by Dylan Charles

    As we inch further into the future and evermore closer to the next, and certainly last, world war, it seems proper to give pause and consider the significance of the fact that much of the information provided on world events is dreadfully compromised by corporate and political propagandists.

    Mainstream media, with its exceptional reach, is able to mold the public’s first impression of any global event thereby establishing the ‘official story,’ the one that is repeated again and again during the first moments of a crisis. They capitalize on the immediate shock
    value of an act of extraordinary violence or unrest to mold public perception into conformity with a narrative that will become the abiding fiction by which any further substantive investigation of the event must be measured against.

    SNIP

    Example #1 – BBC stages a chemical weapons attack in Syria to justify NATO invasion.

    http://www.wakingtimes.com/2015/11/24/4-examples-mainstream-media-fabricating-news-world-war/

  • Tony_0pmoc

    fedup

    28 Nov, 2015 – 12:29 am

    Can I buy you a pint? You wrote that Brilliantly..you even got under my skin..how do use such subtle power at this time of night. You are an inspiration. I wish I could write like that.

  • Jives

    Fred,

    They arent really bath salts etc…

    Does that make it any better??

    Kids in charge of drones and life and death powers who see kids as ‘fun sized terrorists’??

    Sickening and extremely disturbing almost beyond words.

    These drone operator mall rat-brats should be in jail for a long long time.

    We are so beyond the looking glass now i feel utterly nauseous.

    How the fuck did it come to this??

  • RJOGuillory

    ….I worked for US DoD for about 25 years…over 20 years of that as a Federally Protected Whistle Blower. I retired at the pay grade of a Colonel, though my job was fairly low level and most of the reported crimes were just idiotic suppression of bad management and low-level theft / corruption. The key was in learning how their system operates, and how “executives” tow-the-line in support of whatever agenda has been tossed into their cubicle-of-control. Most of these lost souls have no ethics, morals or integrity to begin with…then combine that with the pressure from above, most are afraid to raise their head above their cubicle…lest they lose their jobs, go to jail on BS charges, or get lost in some deployed area, etc., etc. However, if you have the guts and use their rules against them…in most cases they are screwed. I tape-recorded their threats…and let them deny anything such thing happened…and then I pulled out the tape recordings…in which they had threatened me for my entire career. Every time they would pull out some new BS, I’d pull out my perpetual-threat-tape-recordings…and win!
    RJ O’Guillory

  • Mary

    The Guardian has changed tack today. The Mark Clarke Tory cover up has made the front page. Now Shapps and Feldman are in the headlines.

    Tory chairmen should quit over bullying scandal – activist’s father
    Ray Johnson, whose son accused aide Mark Clarke of bullying before he apparently killed himself, says Shapps and Feldman should resign
    http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015/nov/27/tory-chairmen-should-quit-over-bullying-scandal-says-activists-father

    Lady Warsi was ignored when she raised the matter.

    This will run and run.

  • Ken500

    Having their credit cards frozen. The funds were obtained through murderous criminality. They murdered innocent people for money. They chose to murder innocent for money. The US administration are greedy, murdering thugs lower than vermin. They murder vulnerable people for money. They can rot in hell.

  • Mary

    Cyprus gets the BBC seal of approval. Launch pad for Cameron’s Tornado fleet. Akrotiri and Dhekelia are already used for anti-Isis Iraq sorties.

    Syria conflict: Why Cyprus backs Cameron on UK air strikes
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-34937264

    France has already been given use of Akrotiri as a refuelling base and a reserve diversion airfield for their aircraft carrier ops.
    https://goo.gl/maps/phf5ZEPVmks

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akrotiri_and_Dhekelia

    There is also a GCHQ listening station in the Dhekelia base.

    ‘Declassified documents show that the station was run for the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), and documents released by Edward Snowden suggest that in recent years half the cost of running the station is funded by the U.S. National Security Agency.’

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ayios_Nikolaos_Station

    There are larger numbers of RAF aircraft than we have been led to believe.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_active_United_Kingdom_military_aircraft

  • Mary

    Getting desperate? Hammond, Fallon and another Tory will phone Labour MPs over the weekend. Trust the MPs selected will cut the calls off.

  • fred

    “Does that make it any better??”

    Not at all, there have been three sudden deaths of young people in my area in the last few weeks and although it hasn’t been announced it’s common knowledge they were down to legal highs. They are getting to be a far greater problem than the illegal drugs ever were.

  • M Ghearthy

    2.5m poor Syrian refugees in Turkey stayed put for four years, then suddenly 800k made a scramble for Europe. All well dressed, smart fones and with enough pocket money. Must have cost bilal erdogan €200m at least, but payable out of daesh oil shipments. The plan was to smuggle in daesh operatives in this refugee mob and has worked, three have already been used in the Paris attack. How many sleepers still on the loose? Who is checking the whereabouts of the “missing” refugees? No one, the main target of cameron & co is to get enough newsworthy items to con their electorates into agreeing the original masterplan – to fell assad.

    Thats what this upcoming vote is all about.

  • Ken500

    The Tories are trying to threaten other MP’s. Canvassing to prevent impartiality. Coercing the the vote. A threat to Democracy. The bullies in the Nasty Tory Party are notorious and promoted. They are a threat to democracy along with the Labour reprobates who will not hold them to account. Westminster is a total disgrace.

  • Porkfright

    Ruth-yesterday 3.22p.m. Sorry to be so slow. Yes-I have had the same. No email telling me I’m banned for a week. Just a complete lock-out. I had been hammering some troll/shills for some weeks-then suddenly this happens. The said troll/shills are still given free reign, of course. One can flag them if they are really obstreperous-but nothing happens. I get the impression that MSM is now run by a shadow government.

  • Doug Scorgie

    So after the past few weeks of shite that’s been floating around on Facebook iv tried to stay out of it.

    But I can’t, not anymore. Finchie needs to speak.

    MY OPEN LETTER TO ISIS

    What’s the craic lads! I don’t think we have officially met. Finchie here from Ireland, we are that non aggravating, laid back post English island to the west of the bullshit.

    So how’s yourself? Been busy I hope. I see from the shallow media outlets and “copy paste” fear posting on social media that ye have been up to your neck in it the past few months. Good for you!

    Sorry to be bothering ye boys while ye are busy planning the world’s biggest burning man festival in the name of Alan, (or what ever he’s called) but something has come to our attention to past few days that we need to have a quick “chat” about it.

    What’s this I hear about ye adding us to a list of countries called “The Global Coalition” in some mad 80’s themed propaganda video? Ah lads come on will ya, shtep down from 3 legged horse now for a second and rewind the cassette cuz I think ye got it wrong.

    First of all, lads were only here for the craic! We have been through too much shite hawking over the past couple of thousand years to be goin all “rouge and shit” and joining in fights we clearly don’t want to be part of. It’s like when a fisht fight breaks out in primary school between Vince and Iano Kelly. Most of us just watch, shout a bit and kick a bin to make noise or whatever, but we don’t bother getting involved (well Vince is English so any sly opportunity for a shneaky kick to the shins and were all over it) we couldn’t be arsed with the hole thing, we’re simply too laid back.

    Now keeping that in mind let me let you in on a few tips if you do decide to come over here and piss in our cornflakes.

    Don’t judge us on the actions of the lads across the pond. We don’t like that craic. I get that ye have yer fight an all, but dont drag us into it, we don’t give a left bollock for Alan and what he tells ye to do.

    Sharon’s law, (or whatever it is) won’t work here. I know a Sharon, and she’s a cunt. We don’t like her either.

    Don’t bomb our shit. We just finished building it back after breaking free from the very enemy you also have on your hit list. (if you want tho you can destroy leitrim, absolute shithole lads I’m not joking)

    We have more than one army. 1 official army (actually went training in north cork recently to prepare for your arrival. And yes north cork is exactly like Damascus, especially fermoy on a Friday night).

    We also have a few non official, highly secretive, multi talented armies all with the same name (you get used to it after a while) who hate each other but have one very important thing in common…all mad bastards. Let that sink in.

    By the way the unofficial armies are all trained in guerrilla warfare. Meaning your fucked. Like actually fucked. Unless you want to buy weapons, then some of them will turn a blind eye to ” the cause” and sell ya a few AKs while you visit.

    Don’t even think about blowing up Leo Burdocks!!! Consider this your harshest warning!

    If any single pub is damaged during your short stay here, we will consider this an act of war!!! And we praise to our God Arthur, we will strike down on you with great vengeance and furious anger on those who attempt to destroy our drinking patterns during a time of crises!.

    On a final note, remember these and you should be fine:

    1. Offies close at ten

    2. Don’t leave the immersion on

    3. PM me for Bono’s address

    4. Don’t bomb shit when the toy show is on

    5. Start with leitrim

    6. If your looking for virgins you won’t find any on Harcourt street

    7. Get a Tesco clubcard. Trust me.

    8. If you want to blow up a stadium, go to dalymount please.

    9. Go to a water protest, they don’t judge you for where your from, just if you pay or not.

    10. Finally, if asked for change, eyes down and keep Fucking walking!

    So ISIS its good to meet you. Do yourself a favour and us, stay where you are. You don’t want to come here, were not bothered with the issues you have.

    But if you do, we will beat the shit out of all of you using mammies wooden spoon, kilkenny hurlers and the bouncers from the copper faced Jack’s.

    Yours unintentionally

    Finchie and the rest of Ireland

    EDIT: offaly, offaly too!

  • Fredi

    Military expert: Turkish air force stalked Russian jets ‘for several days’
    November 27, 2015 Gazeta.ru

    Russian military expert and blogger Vladislav Shurygin claims the Turkish air force had been trying to catch and destroy Russian attack aircraft “for several days.”

    “When our aircraft took off, the Turks immediately scrambled theirs, and at the approach of our fighter bombers to the area of the fighting, between four and six Turkish F-16s were constantly in the air,” he wrote in his blog on Livejournal.com.

    “Several times the Turkish command moved the closest pair to the border into firing position, but recalled them as they approached it, explaining these steps by ‘accompanying’ foreign aircraft,” he wrote, though he gave no explanation of the sources on which he was basing such conclusions.

    http://rbth.com/defence/2015/11/27/military-expert-turkish-air-force-stalked-rusian-jets-for-several-days_545071

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