The World’s Most Widely Used WMD: Depleted Uranium


The World’s Most Widely Used WMD: Depleted Uranium

In the light of ongoing reports of a huge rises in the incidence of birth defects in Iraq we investigate one of the likely causes, depleted uranium.

Depleted uranium is the world’s most widely used weapon of mass destruction, and yet because it does not come with an associated mushroom cloud, this deadly killer goes largely unreported. However its effects last for centuries and it is currently used indiscriminately used by the major armies of the world with little or no research as to its effects long after the initial explosion. This is especially so in the countries in which they have been most extensively used, Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya. So what is depleted uranium and why should it be considered a weapon of mass destruction?

The Science:

  • The uranium remaining after removal of the enriched fraction contains about 99.8% 238U, 0.2% 235U and 0.001% 234U by mass; this is referred to as depleted uranium or DU.

  • The main difference between DU and natural uranium is that the former contains at least three times less 235U than the latter.

  • DU, consequently, is weakly radioactive and a radiation dose from it would be about 60% of that from purified natural uranium with the same mass.

  • The behaviour of DU in the body is identical to that of natural uranium.

  • Spent uranium fuel from nuclear reactors is sometimes reprocessed in plants for natural uranium enrichment. Some reactor-created radioisotopes can consequently contaminate the reprocessing equipment and the DU. Under these conditions another uranium isotope, 236U, may be present in the DU together with very small amounts of the transuranic elements plutonium, americium and neptunium and the fission product technetium-99. However, the additional radiation dose following intake of DU into the human body from these isotopes would be less than 1%.

The History:

  • Enriched uranium was first manufactured in the 1940s when the US and USSR began their nuclear weapons and nuclear power programs. It was at this time that depleted uranium was first stored as an unusable waste product. There was some hope that the enrichment process would be improved and fissionable isotopes of U-235 could, at some future date, be extracted from the depleted uranium. This re-enrichment recovery of the residual uranium-235 contained in the depleted uranium is no longer a matter of the future: it has been practiced for several years. Also, it is possible to design civilian power reactors with unenriched fuel, but only about 10 percent of reactors ever built utilize that technology, and both nuclear weapons production and naval reactors require the concentrated isotope.

  • In the 1970s, the Pentagon reported that the Soviet military had developed armor plating for Warsaw Pact tanks that NATO ammunition could not penetrate. The Pentagon began searching for material to make denser bullets. After testing various metals, ordnance researchers settled on depleted uranium.

  • The US and NATO military used DU penetrator rounds in the 1991 Gulf War, the Bosnia war, bombing of Serbia, the 2003 invasion and subsequent war in Iraq, in Afghanistan since 2001 and Libya in 2011.

APPLICATIONS OF DEPLETED URANIUM

  • Due to its high density, about twice that of lead, the main civilian uses of DU include counterweights in aircraft, radiation shields in medical radiation therapy machines and containers for the transport of radioactive materials. The military uses DU for defensive armour plate.

  • DU is used in armour penetrating military ordnance because of its high density, and also because DU can ignite on impact if the temperature exceeds 600°C.

In just a three week period of conflict in Iraq during 2003 it was estimated over 1000 tons of depleted uranium munitions were used, mostly in cities

EXPOSURE TO URANIUM AND DEPLETED URANIUM

  • Under most circumstances, use of DU will make a negligible contribution to the overall natural background levels of uranium in the environment. Probably the greatest potential for DU exposure will follow conflict where DU munitions are used.

  • A recent United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) report giving field measurements taken around selected impact sites in Kosovo (Federal Republic of Yugoslavia) indicates that contamination by DU in the environment was localized to a few tens of metres around impact sites. Contamination by DU dusts of local vegetation and water supplies was found to be extremely low. Thus, the probability of significant exposure to local populations was considered to be very low.

  • A UN expert team reported in November 2002 that they found traces of DU in three locations among 14 sites investigated in Bosnia following NATO airstrikes in 1995. A full report is expected to be published by UNEP in March 2003.

  • Levels of DU may exceed background levels of uranium close to DU contaminating events. Over the days and years following such an event, the contamination normally becomes dispersed into the wider natural environment by wind and rain. People living or working in affected areas may inhale contaminated dusts or consume contaminated food and drinking water.

  • People near an aircraft crash may be exposed to DU dusts if counterweights are exposed to prolonged intense heat. Significant exposure would be rare, as large masses of DU counterweights are unlikely to ignite and would oxidize only slowly. Exposures of clean-up and emergency workers to DU following aircraft accidents are possible, but normal occupational protection measures would prevent any significant exposure.

POTENTIAL HEALTH EFFECTS OF EXPOSURE TO DEPLETED URANIUM

  • Kidney Disease

  • Lung Cancer

  • Erythema (superficial inflammation of the skin)

  • Reproductive or developmental effects

  • Issues in the central nervous system (CNS) tissue.

  • Gulf War syndrome and soldier complaints

WHO RECOMMENDATIONS

  • Following conflict, levels of DU contamination in food and drinking water might be detected in affected areas even after a few years. This should be monitored where it is considered there is a reasonable possibility of significant quantities of DU entering the ground water or food chain.

  • Where justified and possible, clean-up operations in impact zones should be undertaken if there are substantial numbers of radioactive projectiles remaining and where qualified experts deem contamination levels to be unacceptable. If high concentrations of DU dust or metal fragments are present, then areas may need to be cordoned off until removal can be accomplished. Such impact sites are likely to contain a variety of hazardous materials, in particular unexploded ordnance. Due consideration needs to be given to all hazards, and the potential hazard from DU kept in perspective.

  • Small children could receive greater exposure to DU when playing in or near DU impact sites. Their typical hand-to-mouth activity could lead to high DU ingestion from contaminated soil. Necessary preventative measures should be taken.

  • Disposal of DU should follow appropriate national or international recommendations

NOTE: NONE OF THESE RECOMMENDATIONS HAVE BEEN IMPLEMENTED IN IRAQ OR AFGHANISTAN OR LIBYA

NATO is Building Up for War


NATO is Building Up for War

undefined

The German city of Frankfurt is continental Europe’s largest financial center and host to the country’s Stock Exchange, countless other financial institutions, and the headquarters of the European Central Bank (ECB) which is responsible for administering the monetary policy of the 18-nation Eurozone. The place is awash with money, as demonstrated by the plush new ECB office building which is costing a fortune.

The original price of the bank’s enormous palace was supposed to be 500 million euros, about 550 million dollars, but the bill has now been admitted as €1.3 billion (£930 m; $1.4 bn). This absurdly over-expensive fiasco was directed by the people who are supposed to steer the financial courses of 18 nations and their half billion unfortunate citizens. If the ECB displays similar skill sets in looking after Europe’s money as it has in controlling the cost of constructing its huge twin-tower headquarters, then Europe is in for a rocky time.

Intriguingly, the Bank isn’t alone in contributing to Europe’s bureaucratic building boom. There is another Europe-based organization of equal ambition, pomposity and incompetence which is building a majestically expensive and luxurious headquarters with a mammoth cost overrun about which it is keeping very quiet indeed.

The perpetrator of this embarrassing farce is NATO, the US-Canada-European North Atlantic Treaty Organization which is limping out of Afghanistan licking its wounds, having been fighting a bunch of sandal-wearing rag-clad amateur irregulars who gave the hi-tech forces of the West a very hard time in a war whose outcome was predictable. But the debacle hasn’t dimmed the vision of the zealous leaders of NATO who are confronting Russia in order to justify the existence of their creaking, leaking, defeated dinosaur. Their problem is not only do they lose wars, but they then look for another one to fight — to be directed from a glittery new and vastly expensive building whose cost has soared above all estimates.

Just like NATO’s wars.

NATO’s operation “Unified Protector” to overthrow Libyan leader Muammar Gadhafi involved a massive aerial blitz of 9,658 airstrikes which ended with the gruesome murder of Gadhafi — and caused collapse of Libya into an omnishambles where fanatics of the barbarous Islamic State are now establishing themselves.

In spite of the horror of NATO’s Libyan catastrophe one does have to have a quiet smile about Ivo H. Daalder and James G Stavridis whose deeply researched analysis in the journal Foreign Affairs in 2012 was titled “NATO’s Victory in Libya.” These sages declared that “NATO’s operation in Libya has rightly been hailed as a model intervention . . . NATO’s involvement in Libya demonstrated that the alliance remains an essential source of stability . . . NATO may not be able to replicate its success in Libya in another decade. NATO members must therefore use the Chicago summit to strengthen the alliance by ensuring that the burden sharing that worked so well in Libya — and continues in Afghanistan today — becomes the rule, not the exception.”

Not much is working well in either Libya or Afghanistan two years after the Daalder-Stavridis advocacy of “burden sharing” and it is obvious that NATO has been the opposite of a “source of stability” in both unfortunate countries.

In October 2005 I wrote that “NATO is to increase its troop numbers in Afghanistan to 15,000 and its secretary-general states that instead of acting as a peacekeeping force it will assume the combat role of US troops, which is insane . . .  The insurgency in Afghanistan will continue until foreign troops leave, whenever that might be. After a while, the government in Kabul will collapse and there will be anarchy until a brutal, ruthless, drug-rich warlord achieves power. He will rule the country as it has always been ruled by Afghans: by threats, religious ferocity, deceit, bribery, and outright savagery when the latter can be practiced without retribution. And the latest foreign occupation will become just another memory.”

The number of US-NATO troops in Afghanistan has been reduced from a high of 130,000 to 13,000, of which some 10,000 are US, but NATO’s new headquarters building in Brussels is expanding in both size and cost. The budget for the immense complex was approved at 460 million Euros (500 million US dollars) in 2010 but has now surged to over 1.25 billion Euros, about 1.4 billion dollars.

Germany’s Der Spiegel reported in January that the scandal of the cost overrun was being kept secret by all governments contributing to this redundant organization. A leaked cable from Germany’s ambassador explained that at a meeting of NATO representatives last December they “pointed to the disastrous effect on the image of the alliance if construction were to stop and if NATO appeared to be incapable of punctually completing a construction project that was decided at the NATO summit of government leaders in April 1999 in Washington. The risk of a further cost increase is already palpable.”

The solution to NATO’s self-imposed image problem was simple : the people responsible for managing the affairs of a military alliance involving 28 countries, 3.5 million combatants and 5,000 nuclear weapons decided, as asked by the staff of its Secretary General, to deal with the matter “confidentially.” In other words, the cost overruns and delays in construction are being deliberately concealed from the public in the hope that NATO’s executives will not appear incompetent.

Meantime, while trying to conceal their flaws, faults and failings in management of basic administrative affairs, NATO’s chiefs are squaring up to Russia in an attempt to persuade the world that President Putin is about to mount an invasion from the east. The focal point of NATO’s contrived alarm is the corrupt and chaotic regime in power in Ukraine, which has serious disagreements with Russia and is therefore energetically supported by the United States to the point of distortion, menace, and mendacity.

As reported in the UK’s Daily Telegraph on March 4, the commander of US troops in Europe, General Frederick “Ben” Hodges, has accused Russia of having 12,000 troops inside eastern Ukraine, which was irresponsible nonsense.

Hodges was formerly the army’s Congressional Liaison Officer in Washington where he obviously acquired a taste for political grandstanding, as in a political speech of the sort that generals have no right to make he declared that “We have to raise the cost for Putin. Right now he has 85 per cent domestic support. But when mothers start seeing their sons come home dead, when the price goes up, domestic support goes down,” which was as offensive as it was hostile.

In February the Wall Street Journal reported Hodges as saying “I believe the Russians are mobilizing right now for a war that they think is going to happen in five or six years—not that they’re going to start a war in five or six years, but I think they are anticipating that things are going to happen, and that they will be in a war of some sort, of some scale, with somebody within the next five or six years.” Just what President Putin was supposed to make of that is anyone’s guess — but it is certain that Hodges’ bellicose meanderings did nothing to persuade Moscow that there would be any attempt by the US-NATO coalition to modify its policy of uncompromising enmity.

Other pronouncements by NATO leaders have been equally threatening and intended to convince the public of western Europe that Russia attacked Ukraine.

But even if Russia had indeed invaded Ukraine, it would have had nothing whatever to do with anyone else.

The US-NATO coalition willfully ignores the fact that Ukraine is not a member of either the European Union or NATO and has no treaty of any sort with any nation in the world that would require provision of political, economic or military support in the event of a bilateral dispute with any other country. Yet NATO has seized upon the Ukraine-Russia discord to justify its policy of unrelenting hostility to Moscow.

NATO should have been disbanded at the time of the collapse of the Soviet Union because that threat was the sole reason for its existence; but it decided to multiply membership and extend its military presence closer and closer to Russia’s borders. There is little wonder that Russia is apprehensive about NATO’s intentions, as the muscle-flexing coalition lurches towards conflict.

NATO’S Supreme Commander, US General Breedlove, has also contributed greatly to tension and fear in Europe by issuing dire warnings about Russia’s supposed maneuvers. On March 5 he indulged in fantasy by claiming, without a shred of evidence and no subsequent proof, that Russia had deployed “well over a thousand combat vehicles” along with “combat forces, some of their most sophisticated air defense, battalions of artillery” within Ukraine. This pronouncement was similar to his downright lie of November 18, 2014, when he told the German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung that there were “regular Russian army units in eastern Ukraine.”

The swell of anti-Russian propaganda, confrontation and attempted intimidation by NATO has increased, and if it continues to do so it is likely that Moscow will take action, thereby upping the stakes and the danger even more. It is time that NATO’s nations came to terms with the reality that Russia is a major international power with legitimate interests in its own region. Moscow is not going to bow the knee in the face of immature threats by sabre-rattling US generals and their swaggering acolytes. It is time for NATO to forge ties rather than destroy them — and to build bridges rather than glitzy office blocks.

The BBC, the Weapons Industry and War Propaganda


The BBC, the Weapons Industry and War Propaganda

By Global Research

poison_propaganda

Last week the Chairman of Europe’s largest arms firm BAE Systems, Roger Carr, was appointed Vice Chairman of the BBC Trust. Will Carr’s close ties to the arms industry “get the best out of the BBC for licence fee payers” as its mission statement promises?

On the trust’s web site we can read the following:

The BBC exists to serve the public, and its mission is to inform, educate and entertain. The BBC Trust is the governing body of the BBC, and we make sure the BBC delivers that mission.”

For many years, however, the BBC has been caught delivering weapons of mass deception, lying, censoring important stories and engaging in war propaganda on more than one occasion. Here are just a few articles we published about BBC lies and propaganda:

The BBC’s Big White (Phosphorus) Lie and BBC and Fallujah: War Crimes and Media Lies, about the BBC’s biased coverage of the U.S. army’s use of white phosphorus bombs against civilians in Iraq.

The Media War on Libya: Justifying War through Lies and Fabrications, about “all sorts of inaccurate reports […] fabricated by the BBC […] and other major networks.”

Her Majesty’s BBC’s Syria Coverage: “Sorry for the Lies”…, about several BBC lies in the coverage of the events in Syria. Among others a “picture of victims of a ‘massacre in Syria’, shown by the BBC as proof that the government was responsible, turned out to be ”photographic evidence” (taken from the BBC’s photo archives) of a 2003 massacre in Iraq.”

Israeli lies unchecked, Palestinian perspectives censored on BBC, about the BBC’s “habit of inviting Israeli politicians or the Israeli government spokesperson […] to speak without challenge. Meanwhile, Palestinians and those who would convey a Palestinian perspective are not given the same opportunity.”

MH17 Witnesses Tell BBC They Saw Ukrainian Jet. BBC Deletes Video, about a BBC Russian correspondent who “interviewed numerous eyewitnesses who described seeing a second aircraft in the sky moments before MH17′s fatal crash. The BBC pulled the report. Why?”

But the mother of all BBC lies is without a doubt its 9/11 coverage of the WTC7 collapse before it happened. In a historic court judgement, Tony Rooke, a British citizen, won his law suit against the public broadcaster claiming: “The fact that the BBC reported the collapse of WTC 7 twenty-three minutes before it actually fell indicates that the UK was aware of the attacks on 9/11 before they actually happened. The direct implication is that they were working with the ‘terrorists’, all arguments as to who the terrorists actually were aside.”

We must remember that 9/11 is the mother of all lies which holds the “War on Terrorism” narrative together. Can people expect anything else but more of the same BBC war propaganda with the arrival of the most important Chairman of the European arms industry as number two of the BBC’s governing body?

Smart Diplomacy In Action: US Ambassador to Libya Abandons Twitter After Tweeting False Bombing Casualty


Smart Diplomacy In Action: US Ambassador to Libya Abandons Twitter After Tweeting False Bombing Casualty

by Patrick Poole

They picked it up from the moment most Libyan twitters started embarrassing Deborah Jones who knows nothing of Libya is in cohorts with the terrorists, believes that all Libyans are incapable to rule our own country and we need her input.  She was highly insulted and challenged about being friends with Libyan Dawn and Sunrise, LIFG, AL Qaeda, Muslim Brotherhood, ISIS/Daesh and of course the Libyan army got wind of it that she is spreading lies all over the twitter accounts as she does not have only this one but also @USAEmbassyLibya and a personal account which she deactivated in 2014 because again she was on the side of Libyan Dawn and company and again she was challenged… she also writes here.

For more information about who she is and proof that she has partnered with the terrorists and not with the legal government you can read here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here  for more information about the ambassador you can also Google her name you will find a lot of articles.

Both ambassadors now reside in Malta and they give their orders from Malta to their minions in Tripoli.

Here is the article:

US Ambassador to Libya Deborah K. Jones had to retire from Twitter today after tweeting out false information on civilian casualties of a bombing raid by military forces of the internationally recognized Libyan government.

Terrible news today from #Tarhouna where 8 innocent displaced #Tawergha killed in air strikes. This violence serves no one’s interests.

 — Safira Deborah (@SafiraDeborah) March 23, 2015

Her tweet was picked up by Western media as the primary source for the information, such as this Reuters article:

Eight civilians were killed in an air strike near Tripoli on Monday, the U.S. ambassador said, as Libya’s internationally recognized government pressed on with an assault to recapture the capital it abandoned to a rival faction last year…

“Terrible news today from Tarhouna where eight innocent displaced Tawergha killed in air strikes,” U.S. Ambassador Deborah Jones said in a tweet, referring to members of a minority group, thousands of whom were displaced after Gaddafi fell.

“This violence serves no one’s interests,” said Jones, who is based outside Libya since most diplomats were evacuated from Tripoli last year.

It turned out, however, that the information was based on rumors and conflicting information from both sides:

The eastern chief of army staff said in a statement its planes had hit a Libya Dawn barracks, not a Tawergha camp, demanding an apology from Jones.

But Mohamed al-Tarhouni, spokesman of the town’s municipality, said nobody had been killed in the strike which he said had hit an empty farm near a camp of displaced Tawergha.

Jones and Louai El-Ghawi, an eastern lawmaker, said there were reports that several family members of a colonel opposed to Libya Dawn had been killed in Tarhouna in an apparent revenge attack, but details were unclear. The eastern chief of staff said Dawn supporters had killed eight members of the family.

A freelance reporter on the scene found nothing describing the info that Jones had tweeted out:

@SafiraDeborah I saw by myself 3 impacts of the airstrike, I can guarantee no one was killed because of it 1/2

— Mathieu Galtier (@mathieu_galtier) March 23, 2015

Libyan Twitter users then began attacking Ambassador Jones for floating false information:

False information from the US ambassador, especially after being sensationalized in the media, has naturally generated a firestorm in #Libya

— James Wheeler (@wheelertweets) March 23, 2015

The back-tracking then began in earnest:

My last tweet based on sources on both sides. Numbers may need correction but bottom line remains: violence serves no one.

— Safira Deborah (@SafiraDeborah) March 23, 2015

This info followed info on the other strikes: both are wrong and we condemn both. The violence must cease. Period

— Safira Deborah (@SafiraDeborah) March 23, 2015

But the damage had been done, and she announced her departure from Twitter:

I have concluded it is best to cease efforts to communicate via Twitter insofar as it distracts from our goal of peace & stability 4 #Libya

— Safira Deborah (@SafiraDeborah) March 23, 2015

We shall continue to post official statements on our embassy FB account. To all those responsible & thoughtful Tweeps out there, thank you

— Safira Deborah (@SafiraDeborah) March 23, 2015

Getting to know thoughtful, dedicated Libyans via Twitter has been an inspiration & given me great hope 4 Libya’s future. I wish you well.

— Safira Deborah (@SafiraDeborah) March 23, 2015

Thus, America is even getting run off of Twitter.

@BBCtrending US ambassador to #Libya @SafiraDeborah quits twitter! Her tweet created a storm of criticism by Libyan tweeps! #Twitter war

— Youssef Sawani (@YoussefSawani) March 23, 2015

Have any other US ambassadors pulled out of Twitter before? Is @SafiraDeborah the first? I remember when the embassy in Cairo clamped down.

— Andy Carvin (@acarvin) March 23, 2015

Smart diplomacy in action.

THE JOKE OF THE YEAR: Press Laughs After U.S. Spokeswoman Claims We Do Not Support Coups


THE JOKE OF THE YEAR: Press Laughs After U.S. Spokeswoman Claims We Do Not Support Coups

So as you can see the United States is famous for backing coups or changing sovereign governments when ever it suits their purposes….. by denying it, it only makes you laugh so hard that tears come to your face, with their audacity that reporters and anonymous readers would believe such a blatant lie. Here is a small preview of the above table which I got it from this article and I suggest you read the whole article maybe some people will wake up from their lethargic sleep and do something

COMMON THEMES

Some common themes can be seen in many of these U.S. military interventions.

First, they were explained to the U.S. public as defending the lives and rights of civilian populations. Yet the military tactics employed often left behind massive civilian “collateral damage.” War planners made little distinction between rebels and the civilians who lived in rebel zones of control, or between military assets and civilian infrastructure, such as train lines, water plants, agricultural factories, medicine supplies, etc. The U.S. public always believe that in the next war, new military technologies will avoid civilian casualties on the other side. Yet when the inevitable civilian deaths occur, they are always explained away as “accidental” or “unavoidable.”

Second, although nearly all the post-World War II interventions were carried out in the name of “freedom” and “democracy,” nearly all of them in fact defended dictatorships controlled by pro-U.S. elites. Whether in Vietnam, Central America, or the Persian Gulf, the U.S. was not defending “freedom” but an ideological agenda (such as defending capitalism) or an economic agenda (such as protecting oil company investments). In the few cases when U.S. military forces toppled a dictatorship–such as in Grenada or Panama–they did so in a way that prevented the country’s people from overthrowing their own dictator first, and installing a new democratic government more to their liking.

Third, the U.S. always attacked violence by its opponents as “terrorism,” “atrocities against civilians,” or “ethnic cleansing,” but minimized or defended the same actions by the U.S. or its allies. If a country has the right to “end” a state that trains or harbors terrorists, would Cuba or Nicaragua have had the right to launch defensive bombing raids on U.S. targets to take out exile terrorists? Washington’s double standard maintains that an U.S. ally’s action by definition “defensive,” but that an enemy’s retaliation is by definition “offensive.”

Fourth, the U.S. often portrays itself as a neutral peacekeeper, with nothing but the purest humanitarian motives. After deploying forces in a country, however, it quickly divides the country or region into “friends” and “foes,” and takes one side against another. This strategy tends to enflame rather than dampen a war or civil conflict, as shown in the cases of Somalia and Bosnia, and deepens resentment of the U.S. role.

Fifth, U.S. military intervention is often counterproductive even if one accepts U.S. goals and rationales. Rather than solving the root political or economic roots of the conflict, it tends to polarize factions and further destabilize the country. The same countries tend to reappear again and again on the list of 20th century interventions.

Sixth, U.S. demonization of an enemy leader, or military action against him, tends to strengthen rather than weaken his hold on power. Take the list of current regimes most singled out for U.S. attack, and put it alongside of the list of regimes that have had the longest hold on power, and you will find they have the same names. Qaddafi, Castro, Saddam, Kim, and others may have faced greater internal criticism if they could not portray themselves as Davids standing up to the American Goliath, and (accurately) blaming many of their countries’ internal problems on U.S. economic sanctions.

One of the most dangerous ideas of the 20th century was that “people like us” could not commit atrocities against civilians.

  • German and Japanese citizens believed it, but their militaries slaughtered millions of people.

  • British and French citizens believed it, but their militaries fought brutal colonial wars in Africa and Asia.

  • Russian citizens believed it, but their armies murdered civilians in Afghanistan, Chechnya, and elsewhere.

  • Israeli citizens believed it, but their army mowed down Palestinians and Lebanese.

  • Arabs believed it, but suicide bombers and hijackers targeted U.S. and Israeli civilians.

  • U.S. citizens believed it, but their military killed hundreds of thousands in Vietnam, Iraq, and elsewhere.

Every country, every ethnicity, every religion, contains within it the capability for extreme violence. Every group contains a faction that is intolerant of other groups, and actively seeks to exclude or even kill them. War fever tends to encourage the intolerant faction, but the faction only succeeds in its goals if the rest of the group acquiesces or remains silent. The attacks of September 11 were not only a test for U.S. citizens attitudes’ toward minority ethnic/racial groups in their own country, but a test for our relationship with the rest of the world. We must begin not by lashing out at civilians in Muslim countries, but by taking responsibility for our own history and our own actions, and how they have fed the cycle of violence.

and here is the rest of the article with the joke that America is not involved in any coups:

Venezuelan President Nicholas Maduro has publicly accused the United States of trying to foment a coup in Venezuela. The accusations come as the Obama Administration has bizarrely labeled Venezuela a national security threat to the United States despite that obviously not being true.Maduro’s accusation stems not just from being labeled a national security threat but from a plot Venezuelan security services uncovered which was publicly detailed by Maduro on Venezuelan TV.

According to Maduro the plot involved Carlos Manuel Osuna Saraco who operates out of New York and Miami, allegedly with the help of the US government. There is audio of Osuna dictating a statement rebel leaders should read after the coup.

If the plot is true it will be the second attempt by the US to foment a coup in Venezuela this century. The first being an amazingly blatant attempt in 2002 against President Hugo Chavez which the White House itself publicly supported before the coup was reversed and Chavez was returned to power.

Which brings us to the laughing stock State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki became yesterday when she claimed [VIDEO] in response to Maduro’s accusations:

As a matter of long standing policy the United States does not support transitions by non-constitutional means. Political transitions must be democratic, constitutional, peaceful, and legal.

We’ve seen many times that the Venezuelan government tries to distract from its own actions by blaming the United States or other members of the international community for events inside Venezuela. These efforts reflect a lack of seriousness on the part of the Venezuelan government to deal with the grave situation it faces.

The Associated Press reporter, Matt Lee, immediately jumped in with quite reasonable incredulity saying “I’m sorry. Whoah, whoah, whoah. The US has a long-standing practice of not promoting [coups] – how long-standing would you say?” Lee continued audibly scoffing and laughing “In particular in South and Latin America that is not a long-standing policy.”