No Trump, No Clinton, No NATO 386


Marina Hyde’s vicious and spiteful attack on Susan Sarandon and the Green Party points to the real danger of anti-Trump protest next week being hijacked by the neo-con warmonger franchise. The idea that those of us who do not want arch warmonger Clinton in power are therefore supporters of Trump is intellectually risible and politically dishonest.

Yesterday the OPCW reported that, contrary to US and UK assertions in the UN security council, there was no nerve agent attack on jihadist-held Douma by the Syrian government, precisely as Robert Fisk was execrated by the entire media establishment for pointing out. The OPCW did find some traces of chlorine compounds, but chlorine is a very commonly used element and you have traces of it all over your house. The US wants your chicken chlorinated. The OPCW said it was “Not clear” if the chlorine was weaponised, and it is plain to me from a career in diplomacy that the almost incidental mention is a diplomatic sop to the UK, US and France, which are important members of the OPCW.

Trump’s reaction to yet more lying claims by the UK government funded White Helmets and Syrian Observatory, a reaction of missile strikes on alleged Syrian facilities producing the non-existent nerve agent, was foolish. May’s leap for British participation was unwise, and the usual queue of Blairites who stood up as always in Parliament to support any bombing action, stand yet again exposed as evil tools of the military industrial complex.

Hillary Clinton, true to form, wanted more aggressive military action than was undertaken by Trump. Hillary has been itching to destroy Syria as she destroyed Libya. Libya was very much Hillary’s war and – almost unreported by the mainstream media – NATO bombers carried out almost 14,000 bombing sorties on Libya and devastated entire cities.

Sirte, Libya, after NATO bombing

The destruction of Libya’s government and infrastructure directly caused the Mediterranean boat migrant crisis, which has poisoned the politics of much of the European Union.

Donald Trump has not started any major war. He has been more restrained in military action than any US President since Jimmy Carter. My own view is (and of course it is impossible to know for sure) that, had Hillary been in power, Syria would already have been totally destroyed, the Cold War with Russia would be at mankind threatening levels, and nuclear tension with North Korea would be escalating.

“He hasn’t destroyed mankind yet” is faint praise for anyone. Being less of an existential danger to mankind than Hillary Clinton is a level achieved by virtually the entire population of the planet. I am not supporting Trump. I am condemning Clinton. I too, like Susan Sarandon, would have voted for Jill Stein were I an American.

So do protest against Trump. But do so under the banner No Trump! No Clinton! No NATO! And if any Clintonite or Blairite gets up to address you, tell them very loudly where to get off. I remember the hijacking of the Make Poverty History campaign by Brown, Darling and Campbell on behalf of their banker friends. Don’t let that happen again.

Or here is an even better idea.

Escape the Trump visit completely. Rather than stand penned in and shouting slogans at a police van parked right in front of you, turn your back on all of that and come join me at the Doune the Rabbit Hole Festival from 13 to 15 July. As our regulars know, this blog has been intimately connected with running the Festival from the start. This year is much bigger, with the Levellers, Akala, Atari Teenage Riot, Peatbog Faeries, and literally scores of other bands, and a great array of other festival activities too, including for kids, who come free and get free drinks.

DTRH has no sponsorship, no advertising, no government money and no rip-offs – beer and cider from £3.50 a pint at the bars. It is very much an alternative lifestyle gathering, and I find spiritual renewal there in the glorious Stirlingshire countryside. (I know that sounds corny, but I do). Tickets are £90 for full weekend including camping, which I think makes it the cheapest festival on this level around. Or you can buy a cheaper day ticket and drop in just for the day. If tickets are too expensive or you fancy a different kind of fun, you can volunteer, including to come and work with me in the bar, though there are a whole range of other tasks to be done if you don’t fancy that. Volunteers get in free and get fed in return for one six hour shift a day.

I really do hope I will see some of you there – it looks set to be a glorious weekend. Forget stress, forget Trump and hang out with nice people!


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386 thoughts on “No Trump, No Clinton, No NATO

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  • N_

    This is the Tories’ greatest moment. I will explain their government’s current Brexit plan because the Tory BBC and the rest of the Tory media won’t

    ************************************************
    1) SINGLE MARKET
    ================

    * “NO to freedom of movement
    MEANING: “keep your surplus labour out of our country, even though our agriculture will collapse

    * “ES to EU rules over trade in goods
    MEANING: “please send food lorries; we’ll try to let them onto our road system without too much delay, so maybe the famine won’t be so bad for those who live near the ports; the famine as a whole we will still blame on you

    * “we won’t accept EU rules over trade in services
    MEANING: “we demand free access to the European continent for financial interests based in the City of London; this is paramount

    2) CUSTOMS UNION
    ================
    * “we’ll stay in, so don’t mess with the Irish border

    EXCEPT

    * “we’ll still make whatever customs arrangements we want with other powers
    ************************************************

    Summary: all power to the City of London even if Britain starves.

    That’s what the distinction between “rules on goods” and “rules on services” is about. You are unlikely to read the above in any mainstream media.

    • N_

      Edit:
      * “NO to freedom of movement”
      * “YES to EU rules over trade in goods”
      * “NO to EU rules over trade in services”

      I have said it before, and I will say it again: the secret god of the Tory party for 200 year has been Thomas Malthus. This is why they hate universal healthcare: they hate the idea of working class people being allowed to live when it’s not profitable. They are full of hatred.

  • Patrick Mahony

    David David resigns. May is surely toast now. Only her Falklands in Wiltshire can save her – but will anyone else (Trump, Macron, Merkel) follow her over the cliff?

    • Shatnersrug

      It’s all part of the plan to end Brexit, it’s been going on for ages, the 1922 club represent the international powers of the city of London, who just will not stand for Brexit, they’ve always known this.

      The problem May has faced is just how to kill it, the Labour right in the shape of Alister Campbell have been charged with bringing labour on board to call for a second referendum, which has been stunningly unsuccessful due to their complete incompetence. So now the plan is to alter public perception then call a second referendum

      Rothermere has been pressured to give Dacre the push, and replaced him with Geordie Greig, the shockingly neoliberal pro-remain sycophant. Davis forced out.

      Expect the Daily mail to become a “heavy hearted” remainer. This entire costly misadventure has been over an internal Tory party disagreement. Shame I was enjoying seeing london protest prices nosedive, I expect I’ll be price out from my grotty rented London Flat once it’s clear we’re staying in the EU and the house prices catapult through the sky

      • N_

        On your last sentence: if house prices fall I wouldn’t expect rents to follow.

        The Dacre fall was interesting and, yes, a sign of the depth of Tory division. Has he actually left his office yet? I find it hard to envisage the Daily Mail becoming pro freedom of movement. That’s unless the welfare state is abolished, which would slash immigration and bring delight throughout the Tory world.

  • Hatuey

    Nobody who gave more than a few seconds of consideration to May’s new Brexit strategy could possibly take it seriously. It takes cherry-picking to extremes and would not only be unacceptable to the EU but it would be totally unworkable even if they accepted it.

    Take just one example, UK trade relations with the wider world. According to this plan the UK would be free to define its own tariffs on goods with countries outside the EU. How could that possibly work? The potential imbalances that would cause are so many and varied they aren’t worth contemplating. Utter crap.

    And now the Cabinet is falling apart with Davis and others resigning. I hope the EU keeps its powder dry and mouths firmly shut over the next few days. An autumn election now looks inevitable. It’s a pity Labour and Corbyn are as pathetic and confused as the government on Europe.

    English politics and society hasn’t been so sewer-like since the heady days of Empire and slavery.

    • N_

      You think they’ll last to the Autumn? Under who? Theresa May is likely to be out this week.

      I totally agree the plan is absurd: customs union but freedom to set tariffs independently (what???), single market in goods (principally food) but not in services (i.e. City of London financial scams) or labour (so no freedom of movement). Nobody taking a serious look at that crock of shit would think it would be accepted by EU27 or, as you rightly say, that it would work if even if they did accept it.

      How much more of this country can the Tory bastards sacrifice on the altar of the City of London? Answer: quite a lot. Bare supermarket shelves are coming.

      • Hatuey

        They can replace May without holding an election, though. Taking the summer recess into account and the usual dragging of feet, I think November is the most likely date. The thing is, on the face of what labour is saying now on the EU, an election will achieve zilch.

        And I don’t think Brexit could be stopped even if you had a government that wanted to stop it. The clock is ticking and there’s no going back as I understand it.

    • Shatnersrug

      Mays dilemma has always been how to keep the Tories in power but in the EU, as I said above Brexit will die before the Tories do

  • N_

    David Davis has resigned.

    He was the Secretary of State for Brexit. Steve Baker, another minister in that department, has also resigned.

    Both Davis and Baker are members of the European Research Group chaired by Jacob Rees-Mogg. As far as I am aware, neither of them have yet made a public statement.

  • N_

    The betting price at Betfair for Theresa May leaving the Tory leadership before the end of September fell tonight from 7.1 to 3 on David Davis’s resignation.

    Chequers – billed as her greatest moment – was a fuck-up.

    It wouldn’t surprise me if 1922 kick her out even without a vote of no confidence. All it will take is a show of hands at tomorrow’s meeting? Anybody want to keep her, raise your hand. Only three hands raised? Then get out.

    • N_

      And a vote for new leader among the Tory membership taking 2-3 months is unlikely, whatever commentators say. The new leader is likely to be chosen by Tory MPs only.

      Interestingly, by slurping to Theresa May’s momentous Chequers package, Michael Gove seems to have made a wrong move. No word for Sajid Javid as far as I know. Boris Johnson won’t get it. A few female victims of his coming forward would be enough to ruin his chances. I somewhat doubt that Tory MPs will elect a Pakistani “non-practising Muslim” as their leader and then go straight into a general election in which there is bound to be a popular far-right alternative for people to vote for. Rudd has been discredited.

      Apart from Jacob Rees-Mogg, that doesn’t leave many alternatives other than Jeremy Hunt. Rees-Mogg’s rise has so far been brilliantly managed. One expects a guy whose dad was editor of the Times to have a good understanding of image.

    • Hatuey

      According to the government, Russia was responsible for the Salisbury attacks. Blackford was asked if, in view of that position, the government should send representation to the World Cup in Russia.

      The SNP position makes plenty sense, if you are able to assume (for whatever reason) that the government’s accusations on Russia and the Skripals are worth taking seriously…

  • quasi_verbatim

    Scruff has fallen on his sword, Grovel has Medized and Bodgers is sulking in his tent.

    The Stars are setting and the Caravan
    Starts for the Dawn of Nothing — Oh, make haste!

    • N_

      And until a short time ago many commentators were saying Theresa May is likely to win any vote of no confidence. Perhaps they are still saying it. Like hell she is! She’s out on her ear’ole.

      • N_

        Can Jeremy Corbyn please step forward and lay some punches on this Tory government that is sinking into the muck? Otherwise it will get replaced by something even worse. C’mon, Team Corbyn – get your act together.

      • Sharp Ears

        Everybody here in the UK has suffered enough since the 2007/8 crash. We want so more of the same. Things are very volatile at the moment politically and financially speaking.

  • Sharp Ears

    Corbyn tweeted

    David Davis resigning at such a crucial time shows @Theresa_May has no authority left and is incapable of delivering Brexit.

    With her Government in chaos, if she clings on, it’s clear she’s more interested in hanging on for her own sake than serving the people of our country.

    12:38 AM – Jul 9, 2018

  • Andrew Carter

    There is now surely only one question which needs answering:

    Was Dawn Sturgess the woman in the Salisbury CCTV carrying a red bag?”

    This will be the key which unravels the entire mystery (and brings down whatever remains of the UK Government)

    • N_

      After watching a video of Dawn Sturgess buying beer and the unidentified “blonde woman” walking in the shopping centre, my opinion is it’s 50-50 they are the same person. The hairlines in the front look similar. One way to pursue this is to try to find people who knew Dawn Sturgess and to ask them. How tall was she? Perhaps the gait of the woman in the shopping centre is unlike hers? Ask that kind of thing. Perhaps they know the man in the shopping centre too.

  • EoH

    David Davis is out. Dawn Sturgess is dead.

    The Guardian’s report, a few hours old, says Ms. Sturgess “handled” an object that transferred to her the dangerous Novichok poison. A few paragraphs later it says that investigating authorities do not yet know how she came into contact with the poison. A seeming contradiction the Guardian does not wrestle with.

    How do we know it was Novichock? Because the UK’s senior counter-terrorism officer said so. Have we had direct confirmation from Porton Down? Not that I’ve seen. We’re no further along than before, except now it’s a murder inquiry. And Dave Davis is out.

  • N_

    What could happen on Monday is that Theresa May proposes a motion of confidence in the government and its policy on Brexit. I’m not sure whether John Bercow would be minded to accept that, or how it would work what with the Fixed Term Parliaments Act, but someone could probably show Bercow some photos to get him to accept it. I don’t think this is likely, but it’s what John Major did over Maastricht. Theresa May’s problem is that she is nowhere near as strong as Major was. It came into my mind because she will make a statement to the House of Commons before she addresses the 1922 Committee.

    The Tories won’t have a caretaker leader (May, Lidington, whoever) during a general election.

    • N_

      Then what would she do if she lost that motion? There would then be a general election unless a government won a vote of confidence within two weeks. And the Tories would have to act damned fast to get a leader in place. They could just about manage that. But having got walloped in a Commons confidence vote isn’t what they’d want, going in to a general election.

      Come the hour, come the Moggster.

  • Hieroglyph

    Oh I’m afraid gossip columnist, and occasional sports-writer, Ms Hyde, had a bad case of TDS. They all do on The Guardian, and I dread to think what their work-parties are like. Doubtless they have a 5-minutes-Rage every morning as well.

    It’s kind of sad really, and permeates into all areas of the teen-magazine once known as The Guardian. There’s no hope for it I’m afraid, and it must be let die a death, perhaps to be bought up by Murdoch, who can add some tits and bingo to keep it alive. Personally, I’d be surprised if The Guardian was still a thing in 10 years time – ditto Amazon. But, I’m often wrong …

  • exiled off mainstreet

    I fully concur with the views stated in the article, including its defence of Sarandon, and its characterisation of Trump and the Harpy. I agree that it is likely that had she managed to gain power, we might all be radioactive dust by now. It took considerable courage for Sarandon, in the highly neoliberal bastion of Hollywood, to take her position. Stein was obviously the best candidate, though she allowed herself to be used in the recount controversy, which, however, exposed that the likely results in Michigan and Pennsylvania actually went more for Trump than the official returns indicated.

    • N_

      The idea that those of us who do not want arch warmonger Clinton in power are therefore supporters of Trump is intellectually risible and politically dishonest

      Irrational dislike of Clinton is Trumpy. Note that I am not defending or praising Clinton. To talk about “those of us who do not want” her in office is loopy. She lost the election two years ago. She is extremely unlikely to be a candidate for the US presidency again. Why write and think as if the election is still going on? “No Trump! No Clinton!” sounds stuck in 2016 (and was only right then while Bernie Sanders was still a candidate for the Democratic nomination). Clinton isn’t the leader of the Democratic party. She is its failed presidential candidate from two years ago.

      • bj

        Irrational dislike of Clinton is Trumpy.

        Nice begging the question fallacy there.
        He just stated a reason why he disliked Hillary, and you just brush that off with your ‘irrational’.
        How about pointing out where he is ‘irrational’?
        No, instead you just distract with your ‘upcoming elections’.

    • flatulence'

      Is it me, or is her response letter to Davis just a crude monoMaybotic party political broadcast. I mean it’s to be expected to some extent. It’s politics. But that was just cringe.

  • Sharp Ears

    Trying to the establish whether Dacre has left the Hell yet, I came across this attack piece on his successor, Geordie Greig.

    Is this true?

    ‘By contrast, Dacre’s first love is newspaper journalism. News and features are the things that get him out of bed in the morning. He has many faults, of course, but as an old-fashioned newspaperman he is second to none. He can be relied upon to pursue anyone he thinks deserves scrutiny. A recent example of this relates to his friend from their days at Leeds University, the former Labour Foreign Secretary Jack Straw. In the last couple of months any personal history between them has been cast aside as Straw has been thrust under the Mail’s microscope on several occasions over his knowledge, or otherwise, of the UK’s role in ‘extraordinary rendition’. ‘

    Was there criticism of Straw?

    The author thinks Rothermere has chosen the wrong replacement.

    https://www.conservativewoman.co.uk/author/johnsmith/

    No idea who they are. V reactionary. https://www.conservativewoman.co.uk/conwoms-culture-war/

    • Hatuey

      Britain was always shit. Today, though, it’s more than shit; it’s a powerless old has-been, the Willy Loman of international politics, delusional and confused, gettting lost in nostalgic streams of consciousness that nobody wants to know about.

      If you were to sit and compile a list of things that Britain might rightly be proud of, it would be a very short list. Let’s put a finer point to it… 99% of British achievements over the last 400 years basically hinged on mugging defenceless people at gunpoint.

      Football’s coming home? To what? I listened to the 5 Live phone in on Brexit today. One angry xenophobe after the other, united by one thing alone — absolute thickness.

  • Tony

    I get sick and tired of commentators who criticise people who did not, for example, vote for Clinton but never criticise the losing candidate for losing their support in the first place.

    In his memoirs, Robin Cook blamed those who refused to vote for Jospin and thus caused Le Pen to come second in a French presidential election. No criticism of Jospin for failing to inspire those voters in the first place.

    A reminder of how awful Clinton (and the MSM) is:

    https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2015/06/19/flashback_2011_hillary_clinton_laughs_about_killing_moammar_gaddafi_we_came_we_saw_he_died.html

  • Paul Barbara

    And we know how NATO operates – not on evidence, but on accusations, just as with Syrian CW ‘False Flag’ attacks or hoaxes, on lies like Saddam’s non-existant WMD’s, and the lies about Libya (like Syria, the US and it’s cronies brought masses of foreign Jihadis in to create an armed insurrection). Here is another one, usually glossed over, but with just the same lack of eviidence, but plenty of accusations:
    ‘The Mysterious Frank Taylor Report: The Document that Launched US-NATO’s “War on Terrorism” in the Middle East’.
    And here is the (now declassified) ‘evidence’, as thoroughly convincing as Salisbury, Amesbury, Saddam’s WMD’s and Dr. Kelly’s death:
    http://intelfiles.egoplex.com/2001-10-02-DOS-Qaeda-Overview.pdf

  • Elliott

    The thing that you don’t seem to get is that Donld Trump is a fascist, and Hillary Clinton is not. Not voting for Hillary against Trump was enabling American fascism, and not wanting to have voted for Hillary against Trump is endorsing American fascism. There’s no amount of anything that’s going to get around that.

    • Paul Barbara

      @ Elliott July 9, 2018 at 22:53
      Whenever I post comments about the Clinton’s on here, no matter that the info is in the public domain, from newspapers, books and videos, it gets deleted.
      No way should she have become President; nor, of course, should Trump.
      I’ll be protesting against Trump, Friday and probably Thursday as well.

  • Sharp Ears

    Not too many happy bunnies in Brussels by the sound of it.

    Uneasy alliance: Transatlantic partners prepare for contentious NATO summit
    11 Jul 2018

    Combating mistrust – not terrorism – may be the top item on the agenda for NATO when it meets in Brussels this week. Usually a scripted snooze-fest, this year’s summit has been billed as a showdown between deeply-divided allies.

    Member states of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) will assemble at their new headquarters in Brussels from July 11-12, amid growing unease between Washington and its European allies on issues ranging from defense spending to Donald Trump’s tariffs. NATO members have also expressed concern over reports that Trump is considering withdrawing some of the US troops currently stationed in Germany.

    /..
    https://www.rt.com/news/432621-nato-summit-brussels-trump-russia/

    At the weekend there was a large protest in Brussels against NATO – and Trump.

    https://www.commondreams.org/news/2018/07/08/make-peace-great-again-ahead-nato-summit-anti-trump-protest-draws-thousands-brussels

  • Gary

    Yes, after ‘kettling’ and the killing of newsvendors by policemen who had already been sacked ONCE for brutality came the non=reporting of protests.

    The TV news simply doesn’t report protests now, and goes to extreme lengths to avoid featuring them in any shots it takes during newsreporting from the area in question – which it will avoid doing if possible.

    The ONLY exception I have seen in recent years in the VAST coverage given to the British Board of Deputies on their ‘day of rage’ against Corbyn, I thought it VERY odd that this was the ONLY protest the BBC had covered in years.

    I saw a live report (BBC) from The Palace of Westminster which was interrupted. A group of protestors had gotten into the main area from which they film their reports and an official had told them they ‘had to’ stop filming. Even the reporter seemed aghast at this. However, they complied. From this I am inferring that it is government policy that large protests will not be shown on television nor reported on by the BBC. Are our government using this to control opinion? By making us feel we are alone in our thoughts when in fact up to 50,000 people may be on a protest march in the country’s capital it is hard to conclude that they are not. Sounds a bit 1984 but honestly, keep your eye on the news and compare it to what you see on other country’s reports of what happens here, French, German, Russian etc news will show these protests, ours won’t…

  • nevermind

    Could not agree more with Craig, who is that Trump any way that he deserves any attention. I’m going to tumble down into the rabbit hole and enjoy a pint or two

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