1 in 2 American Adults Already In Facial Recognition Network.

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Half of all American adults are already in some sort of facial recognition network accessible to law enforcement, according to a comprehensive new study.

Conducted over a year and relying in part on Freedom of Information and public record requests to 106 law enforcement agencies, the study, conducted by Georgetown Law’s Center on Privacy and Technology, found American police use of facial recognition technology is a scattered, hodgepodge network of laws and regulations.

More: Inside The Government Centers Where The FBI Shares Intel With Police

“Looking at the sum total of what we found, there have been no laws that comprehensively regulate face recognition technology, and there’s really no case law either,” Clare Garvie, an associate at the CPT, told Vocativ. “So we find ourselves having to rely on the agencies that are using that technology to rein it in. But what we found is that not every system — by a long shot — has a use policy.”

That so many American adults are in at least one facial recognition database is largely due to the fact that at least 26 states, and likely more, share their Department of Motor Vehicles databases with the FBI, state police, or other law enforcement agencies, the study found. Compounded with that, police often have access to mugshot databases. Garvie’s study found that most law enforcement agencies don’t purge such records, even if the arrested suspect is found not guilty, unless a court orders it. The sole known exception is the Michigan State Police, which does expunge photos after a set amount of time.

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The report also found that more than one in four law enforcement agencies have access to some sort of facial recognition capability, meaning either that the agency possesses such software or it has some sort of partnership with a police intelligence agency that does. The West Virginia Fusion Center, for example, a Charleston-based coalition of federal and local law enforcement, possesses software that matches individuals in video footage with a database of still photographs. Not only does it share information with the FBI, West Virginia State Police, and city and county departments, it may grant access to 77 other fusion centers across the country.

More: NY To Test Facial Recognition Cameras At ‘Crossing Points’

 

“These systems are used on law-abiding Americans without their knowledge or consent in most cases,” Garvie said.

 

Obama Enters the Media Wars – Why His Recent Attack on Free Speech is So Dangerous and Radical.

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Obama is no friend to free speech as many journalists can attest, even some within the #oldmedia like Susan Page at The USA Today. He clearly dislikes the emergence of an alternative narrative to the one he has sought to craft from the beginning of his presidency. Obama’s White House had “journalists” flowing in and out of it all the time. Even Jon Stewart had secret meetings with the President. And Obama is concerned that the “truth” is being spun by people he doesn’t like? Please.

(From Liberty Blitzkrieg)

Pittsburgh (AFP) – President Barack Obama on Thursday decried America’s “wild, wild west” media environment for allowing conspiracy theorists a broad platform and destroying a common basis for debate.

Recalling past days when three television channels delivered fact-based news that most people trusted, Obama said democracy require citizens to be able to sift through lies and distortions.

“We are going to have to rebuild within this wild-wild-west-of-information flow some sort of curating function that people agree to,” Obama said at an innovation conference in Pittsburgh.

“There has to be, I think, some sort of way in which we can sort through information that passes some basic truthiness tests and those that we have to discard, because they just don’t have any basis in anything that’s actually happening in the world,” Obama added.

“That is hard to do, but I think it’s going to be necessary, it’s going to be possible,” he added.

“The answer is obviously not censorship, but it’s creating places where people can say ‘this is reliable’ and I’m still able to argue safely about facts and what we should do about it.”

The above may sound good on a superficial level to people with zero critical thinking skills, but even the most elementary analysis exposes it as the obvious and dangerous attack on free speech that it is. Let’s zero in on a few things he said in closer detail.

He describes the media environment as the “wild, wild west.” Kind of sounds like an environment in which people are free to say, publish or record whatever they want, and let the chips fall where they may. Seems consistent with the first amendment to me.

He notes that there needs to be “some sort of way in which we can sort through information that passes some basic truthiness tests and those that we have to discard.” This sounds good on the surface because, after all, who doesn’t want truth? The problem lies in the fact that governments can and do lie all the time about stuff of monumental significance. Let’s take the Iraq war for example. As I discussed in August’s post, Questioning Hillary’s Health is Not Conspiracy Theory:

Of course, the New York Times rendering judgment on those pushing conspiracy theories would be downright hilarious if it weren’t so sad. For example, the paper itself exhibited no such restraint when it came to peddling U.S. government conspiracies about Iraq in the run up to one of the most inhumane, unnecessary and destructive foreign policy blunders in American history. In fact, the paper was ultimately so embarrassed by its own behavior, it issued a statement in 2004 titled, FROM THE EDITORS; The Times and Iraq

Meanwhile, there were millions of people in the “wild west” of opinion making yelling and screaming that the government was misleading the public about Iraq in order to go to war. So who got it right, the New York Times, or the wild, wild west?

If Obama had his way, those people who asserted that the public was being mislead into the Iraq war would have been dismissed as “conspiracy theorists” not worth paying attention to since they refused to agree with government “facts.” Obama’s position is such an obvious authoritarian slippery slope, one has to ask why he would dare go so far.

My view is that there is a full on panic occurring right now at the very top of America’s shadow government due to the fact that the public is no longer falling for corporate media propaganda. Once again, let’s turn to something I wrote in the post, Questioning Hillary’s Health is Not Conspiracy Theory:

As I look at the landscape in 2016 to-date, I observe emergent signs that alternative media is finally beginning to take over from the legacy mainstream media when it comes to impact and influence. The mainstream media (unlike with John McCain in 2008), had decided that Hillary Clinton’s health was not an issue and chose not to pursue it. Many in the alternative media world took a different position, and due to mainstream media’s failure to inform the American public for decades, the alternative media drove that issue to the top of the news cycle. That’s power.

This is an incredibly big deal, and the mainstream media intuitively knows what it means. It means a total loss of legitimacy, prestige and power. All of which is well deserved of course.

So here’s the bottom line. 2016 represents the true beginning of what I would call the Media Wars. Alternative media is now capable of driving the news cycle. Mainstream media now has no choice but to fight back, and fight back it will. It will fight back dirty. This is going to get very ugly, but by the time the dust has settled, I think much of the mainstream media will be left as a shell of its former self.

By ugly, I didn’t expect the President of these United States to so publicly and radically advocate in favor of free speech restrictions, but here we are.

Let’s conclude by tackling another portion of his talk, where he states, “the answer is obviously not censorship, but it’s creating places where people can say ‘this is reliable’ and I’m still able to argue safely about facts and what we should do about it.” 

Who exactly is supposed to be granted the power to create such spaces and verify things as factual? We know that government lies all the time, yet when they lie, they present such falsehoods as fact. It is the duty of the people to decide what to believe and what not to believe. This is not the job of government, or anyone else for that matter.

Yes, it’s true that there’s an unbelievable amount of garbage out there on the internet, but yet we manage. What seems to be happening here with Obama is a not so subtle attempt to blame the rise of Trumpism on alternative media as opposed to the actual culprit, his oligarch coddling policies. It’s a sign of pathetic desperation from a man who has completely and utterly failed the American public while protecting the rich and powerful. It’s an ugly manifestation of an executive who cannot come to terms with the justified anger of a public who feels betrayed by him. Sure a compliant, preening and entirely propagandist media would make Obama feel a whole lot better about his miserable legacy, but we shouldn’t sacrifice the first amendment to achieve this.

By: Michael Krieger

Resistance is Fertile: The Art of Having No Masters.

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“You don’t become completely free by just avoiding being a slave; you also need to avoid becoming a master.” ~Naseem Nicholas Taleb

In the midst of a hyper-violent culture blinded by the statist agenda of control, militarized cops brainwashed by the statist notion of law and order, and a bloated military with the monopoly on power through tyranny, it’s difficult for the would-be-resister to live with any confidence that their freedom will not be compromised by the violent thugs in power or by the indoctrinated statists that represent the majority.

Difficult time to be free. Made even more difficult because of the level of psychosocial statist programming causing the majority to believe that everything is okay as long as they keep voting. Caught up in their hyper-realities, going through the motions of being an abstraction of an abstraction, the ignorant statists are convinced that everything is just fine, that the authority of the state is necessary, that the militarization of the police will help keep them protected, that an obese, money-sucking, terrorist-generating military will somehow make them more secure. What is this, 1984? What’s next? War is peace? Freedom is slavery? Ignorance is strength? Sadly, in some ways, we’re already there.

The problem with statism is that everything seems okay inside the bubble, but the bubble is always about to burst. Statism is slavery by consent. It hoodwinks people into enjoying their servitude. It (brain)washes out logic and reasoning through nationalism and patriotism, thus scrambling the ignorant statist’s brain into exploitable soup. Bombarded by state-engineered symbols that the statist marries their fragile ego to, statism is by far the most dangerous religion. Made all the more dangerous because people are born and bred into being statists and cannot even imagine thinking outside its box.

But resistance is not futile. It only seems that way because we are surrounded by the Goliath that is the state. No, on a long enough timeline, resistance is fruitful. Resistance always has, and always will, lead to human flourishing. It might not always be pretty, but resistance to any and all standing orders (manmade laws), is the key to a healthy, sustainable, and progressive evolution for our species.

The art of having no masters is perfecting the science of resistance. But resistance isn’t fairytale romantic. It’s not pretend confliction. It takes effort. It takes perseverance. It takes counterintuitive ruthless compassion, usually in the face of those you care about. Definitely not for the faint of heart. But, then again, having a faint heart is for statists who imagine they need a master, not for anarchists who know they need only master themselves. Yes, resistance is fertile but, more than anything, it’s courageous, uncomfortable, and dangerous.

Let’s break it down…

Resistance is Courageous

“I’d rather attempt to do something great and fail than to attempt to do nothing and succeed.” ~Robert H. Schuller

The art of having no masters cannot be rationalized until one has the audacity to question things as they are. As Chomsky famously stated, “The general population doesn’t even know what’s happening, and it doesn’t even know that it doesn’t know.” Indeed. Until the individual stands up and dares to jut his/her head above the sea of status quo conformity, they will continue to be ruled. But being ruled, or not, is always a state of mind. Until the individual has the audacity to change their state of mind to self-rule despite those who seek to rule them, their “soft slavery” will continue.

Statism is the epitome of soft slavery. Statists are like house slaves. There just happen to be a lot more of them, and the “house” is the state. As long as the house slave (statist) doesn’t disobey the house master (the state), they live relatively comfortable and secure lives. All their needs are met. Except, of course, the need for freedom and self-ownership.

Thus, it takes a particular flavor of courage to rise above the comfort and security in order to actualize self-mastery. The statist who merely goes along with the state’s agenda, attempts nothing great, and succeeds. The anarchist who rises above the washed-out conformity of it all, attempts something great and, though he may fail, he at least gains self-authority and takes his first steps toward self-mastery and perfecting the art of having no masters.

Resistance is Uncomfortable

“To live by the dice or accept death with confidence requires a consummate self-possession, which is the essence of character. No one becomes a hero staying at home, going to the office, or attending church.” ~Michael Dirda

The art of having no masters is not a pleasant art. It is in all ways disruptive. It is completely unsettling. Much cognitive dissonance must be successfully navigated. And there are always setbacks. Because the art of having no masters means having the courage to (at least attempt to) master the individual self, despite those who seek to rule the individual’s self, it is never comfortable. Though one can glean much comfort out of owning oneself, it’s never easy. Especially in a world that thinks everything should be owned.

One is constantly outnumbered. Whether it’s the giant goliath of the state itself or the tiny goliath of the inured statist, it can be painfully and awkwardly uncomfortable. But resisting those who would rule you was never meant to be comfortable. As Brene’ Brown stated, “You can have courage or you can have comfort, but you can’t have both.”

Indeed. Those seeking to perfect the art of having no masters must embrace the discomfort that comes with rocking the boat. It’s a double-edged sword, for sure. On the one side is sweet freedom, but on the other side is taking the painful responsibility for that freedom. But the genuinely autonomous, the authentic seekers of freedom, the true anarchists, will always choose to stab themselves with that double-edged sword, no matter how uncomfortable or painful it might be. Thereby taking the next step toward self-mastery and further perfecting the art of having no masters.

Resistance is Dangerous

“The Matrix is a system, Neo. That system is our enemy. But when you’re inside, you look around, what do you see? Businessmen, teachers, lawyers, and carpenters; the very minds of the people we are trying to save. You have to understand, most of these people are not ready to be unplugged. And many of them are so inured, so hopelessly dependent upon the system, they will fight to protect it.” ~Morpheus, The Matrix

If resistance is dangerous, then the art of having no masters is doubly dangerous. Especially in a world where the majority of the people are dead-set on having masters. In a world where the majority are convinced they need a queen, or a king, or a president, it makes it problematic for those who are seeking to take responsibility for their own power and who are teaching self-leadership. It’s dangerous because people are afraid of what they don’t understand. And the majority of people simply cannot understand a world without rulers and masters. Talk about not being able to think outside the box, let alone the Matrix.

Everyone wants to give their power to an authority, never stopping to think that authority should be themselves. Everyone wants to be Neo, but nobody wants to take responsibility for their own power. Sure, give credit where credit is due (as Neo did with Morpheus), for true leadership is an honorable thing indeed, but not to the extent that your freedom is discredited and your power is taken away. Self-empowerment is the key to unlocking the door of having no masters. And it leads to authentic leadership.

With all these people giving up their power, in Stockholm-syndrome-esque proportions, it makes it difficult for the would-be self-master to work on his/her self-mastery. But work on it they should. We need more leaders who are able to resist. We need more courageous individuals who are not afraid of getting uncomfortable or facing the danger of being right when the majority of people are wrong. We need more self-empowered individuals seeking to empower others, despite a world that’s attempting to take that power away. We need more trailblazers who are not afraid to spearhead self-authority straight through the heart of state-authority. We need leaders who have the audacity to teach self-leadership and self-rule through self-empowerment, despite the state which only seeks to rule by the illusion of authority through the overreach of violent power.

In short: we need more people who care about life to resist those who do not, because life is freedom and freedom is life. That is the heart and soul of the art of having no masters. As Derrick Jensen said, “We are the governors as well as the governed. This means that all of us who care about life need to force accountability onto those who do not.”

By: Gary ‘Z’ McGee

Gary ‘Z’ McGeea former Navy Intelligence Specialist turned philosopher, is the author of Birthday Suit of God and The Looking Glass Man. His works are inspired by the great philosophers of the ages and his wide awake view of the modern world.

Source: Waking Times

5 Reasons Why Belief in Authority is the Most Dangerous Superstition.

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“Question authority, including the authority that told you to question authority.” ~Sixth grade girl

Let’s get something straight, here at the outset. There’s nothing wrong with authority itself. It’s the belief part that messes everything up. Anyone can claim authority. But such authority only matters if others believe in it.

I can claim that I’m an authority on unicorns, but I better have the credentials to prove it. And it would also help if unicorns existed. But the point is this: If enough people “believe” that I’m an authority on unicorns, and they “believe” that I have dissected a unicorn and revealed the magical quality of its insides that causes it to shit rainbows, then I’ll not only have violated truth, I’ll have violated the minds of others and taken advantage of their ignorance. But, and here’s the rub, it’s their fault for not questioning my so-called authority. As Albert Einstein said (himself an authority in the field of physics), “Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth.” So if we’re correct to question Einstein’s revolutionary theories, then we’re exponentially correct to question my unicorn theories.

Respecting a prestigious authority, or taking into consideration important knowledge gleaned by someone who is an authority in a particular domain of knowledge is fine. It’s even okay that sometimes we allow people to violate our minds. We allow artists to do it all the time. No, it’s when we “believe” in authority, when we blindly follow a perceived authority, that things go wrong.

Belief implies non-questioning. But let’s sail right past semantics and art and get down to brass tacks. Belief in authority is dangerous. And it’s doubly dangerous when the majority of people are under its spell. Here are five reasons why.

1.) It Can Cause Otherwise Good People to do Evil Things

“It’s easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled.” ~Mark Twain

So back to my authority on unicorns. Did you know that unicorns also created the universe? Yup! Not only do they shit rainbows, they also puke universes. The last unicorn died for our sins in a forest of fiery crosses. And the only commandment that survived the test of time is this: “Anyone who questions the fact that unicorns created the universe are godless heathens and deserve to die and spend eternity in the fiery pits of a Tennessee summer afternoon.”

Now enter unquestioning idiots with hooked-on-authority soup for brains. They “believe” the Last Commandment of the Unicorns. They believe it so much that they refuse to question it, lest other believers think they are not true believers. Lest they get ostracized by the status quo. Lest they look “crazy” in the eyes of their fellow believers. Now just replace The Last Commandment of the Unicorns with the Bible or the Koran or the Constitution of the United States, or state-driven police enforcement, or the belief that “nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.”

The problem is that people will fight, and kill, and murder, and commit both genocide and ecocide, for what they believe in. But they might not have fought so violently and thoughtlessly had they simply taken into consideration ALL those claims of authority and moved on smartly with their lives. The best way to maintain a healthy skepticism, and not devolve into an ignorant, sycophantic, violent mess, is to take things into consideration and question them rather than believe in them.

2.) It Leads to the Idea That We Need to Give a Group of People Permission to Control Us

“The multitudes have a tendency to accept whoever is master. Their very mass weighs them down with apathy. A mob easily adds up to obedience. You have to stir them up, push them, treat the men rough using the very advantage of their deliverance, hurt their eyes with the truth, throw light at them in terrible handfuls.” ~Victor Hugo

By the way, the Church of the Last Unicorn is in charge of everything. It is the power behind all nation states. It pulls the strings of presidents. It whispers dark secret nothings into the ears of queens. It tugs the coattails of emperors. Its poison-soft invisible rainbow-powers saturate all things. You might as well just give into it. You might as well just let them pull your strings through the indirect authority of strategically placed men. It’s just the way things are, after all.

Or, you could question it all. You could question the almighty Unicorns. You could question the kings and queens and emperors and presidents and judges and lawyers and cops. You could question all authority, especially the so called authority of the state. It’s so easy even a sixth grader understands it (see opening quote).

The alternative is devolving into a statist. A statist is a person who believes that a group of people have the right to force, coerce, enslave, rob, and murder others. Statism is a mental disorder brought on by years of indoctrination. The problem is that the majority of the world’s population has been conditioned and brainwashed into believing in the almighty power of the state. The problem is that the majority of people are too afraid to question the state, lest they become ostracized by the statist-junky status quo. The problem is that most people don’t even know that they don’t know that there is an alternative.

3.) Power Given to Authority Tends to Corrupt

“I have as much authority as the Pope. I just don’t have as many people who believe it.” ~George Carlin

Here’s a little secret: The Pope has unicorn powers. Then again, so does Colin Kaepernick. Keep in mind, the unicorn power is a righteous power. It’s a loving power that had, and has, the greatest of intentions. It created the universe, after all. And if you don’t believe it, then feel free to rot in Hades, Illinois, located directly across the Mississippi River from St. Louis (according to Uncyclopedia: the content-free encyclopedia).

But I digress, the problem with power isn’t its intent. The problem with power is that it tends to corrupt the one wielding it. And when it comes to absolute power –well, we all know where that leads. So since we all know that power tends to corrupt, and since we all want power anyway, it behooves us all to be circumspect both with it and against it.

So it stands to reason not to give power to authority by believing it, but to use the power of authority instead by undermining it. And the best way to use the power of authority is to use it against the authority by questioning that authority. It’s a social leveling mechanism par excellence, similar to the Native American concept of counting coup. As Elie Weisel said, “Every question possesses a power that does not lie within the answer.” We just need to use that power more effectively, especially against ourselves. Unicorns forbid!

4.) It Leads to An Ignorant and Apathetic Citizenry

“The totally convinced and the totally stupid have too much in common for the resemblance to be accidental.” ~Robert Anton Wilson

In the Unicorns we trust! Their powers are ubiquitous. Their symbols of control are hidden in all the world’s national flags, waiving influentially over the weakened masses. Their horns are the invisible bone funnels in everyone’s pie, siphoning power like it was blood pudding. Oh, I forgot to mention, blood pudding is a unicorn’s favorite dish. Obey, or go without!

When it comes down to it, obedience to authority is a disease of laziness and indifference. It hinders the progressive evolution of our species by undermining anything that might challenge the current system for the better. Forget “for the worst.” Fighting for the better at risk of the worst is far superior to shirking the better in fear of the worst. Similarly, worst case scenarios should not be avoided at the expense of healthy progress. Healthy progress should be embraced at the risk of worst case scenarios. Otherwise we don’t get anywhere but where we are. Which is great if “where we are” is perfect. But since perfection is not possible, we must be willing to risk upsetting the all-too-precious apple cart (or blood pudding cart, in this case) in order to progress.

If, as Jose Ortega y Gasset said, “Man, whether he likes it or not, is a being forced by his nature to seek some higher authority. If he succeeds in finding it of himself then he is a superior man; if not, he is a mass-man and must receive it from his superiors,” then it is incumbent upon us to have the courage to shirk our inner mass-man in order to discover self-authority through self-questioning. As long as we are responsible with our own power, and as long as we don’t allow anyone to hold too much power over us, then we might just be able to get out of our own way as a species.

Because, as it stands now, we are definitely in our own way. Especially since following authority in today’s world means giving into debt-slavery, kowtowing to an expropriating state, and being unwitting accomplices to genocides past and ecocides future. As the authors of The Fuck-it Point surmised, “Obedience to authority is not a valid excuse; not when doing what we’re “supposed to do” means letting this civilization-machine continue to kill life on earth just to make commodities out of living beings and life easy only for some.”

By: Gary ‘Z’ McGee

Gary ‘Z’ McGeea former Navy Intelligence Specialist turned philosopher, is the author of Birthday Suit of God and The Looking Glass Man. His works are inspired by the great philosophers of the ages and his wide awake view of the modern world.

Source: wakingtimes

The New U.S. Way Of War.

A recommendable New York Times piece looks at the mostly hidden way the U.S. is now waging wars. The example is Somalia, where the U.S. has been at war with the people of that country for over 25 years. But, as the authors note, the same modus operandi applies elsewhere.

The Obama administration has intensified a clandestine war in Somalia over the past year, using Special Operations troops, airstrikes, private contractors and African allies in an escalating campaign against Islamist militants in the anarchic Horn of Africa nation.

Would that “anarchic” nation Somalia still be “anarchic” if the U.S. would end its endless fighting there? That is very unlikely. Without outer interference Somalia would have been peaceful again many years ago. But the war continues, run not with regular U.S. forces, but with mercenaries, proxies, drones and a few U.S. Special Forces.

Somalia is an example of the “failed states” the U.S. now creates wherever it goes. A “failed state” then justifies further involvement. The “model” applies around the world:

The Somalia campaign is a blueprint for warfare that President Obama has embraced and will pass along to his successor. It is a model the United States now employs across the Middle East and North Africa — from Syria to Libya — despite the president’s stated aversion to American “boots on the ground” in the world’s war zones. This year alone, the United States has carried out airstrikes in seven countries and conducted Special Operations missions in many more.

Such wars are mostly “off the book”. Congressional oversight does not happen for them as the impact within the U.S. is too small. The media are practically excluded. The money comes out of secret CIA and special forces accounts or is shaken out of some friendly U.S. client state like Saudi Arabia. No one will find out what methods of force or “interrogation” are used and as those prisoners vanish in some local warlord’s dungeon, no one is likely to ever find out:

About 200 to 300 American Special Operations troops work with soldiers from Somalia and other African nations like Kenya and Uganda to carry out more than a half-dozen raids per month, according to senior American military officials. The operations are a combination of ground raids and drone strikes.

The Navy’s classified SEAL Team 6 has been heavily involved in many of these operations.

Once ground operations are complete, American troops working with Somali forces often interrogate prisoners at temporary screening facilities, including one in Puntland, a state in northern Somalia, before the detainees are transferred to more permanent Somali-run prisons, American military officials said.

Force is applied willy-nilly. It doesn’t matter much who gets hit or why. Lack of local knowledge, language and politics are the norm. No one ever gets punished for getting things wrong:

[A]n airstrike last month killed more than a dozen Somali government soldiers, who were American allies against the Shabab.Outraged Somali officials said the Americans had been duped by clan rivals and fed bad intelligence, laying bare the complexities of waging a shadow war in Somalia.

The responsibilities that legally come with warfare are handed off to private parties. The use of mercenaries prevents accountability:

At an old Russian fighter jet base in Baledogle, about 70 miles from the Somali capital, Mogadishu, American Marines and private contractors are working to build up a Somali military unit designed to combat the Shabab throughout the country.Soldiers for the military unit, called Danab, which means lightning in Somali, are recruited by employees of Bancroft Global Development, a Washington-based company that for years has worked with the State Department to train African Union troops and embed with them on military operations inside Somalia.

Michael Stock, the company’s founder, said the Danab recruits received initial training at a facility in Mogadishu before they were sent to Baledogle, where they go through months of training by the Marines. Bancroft advisers then accompany the Somali fighters on missions.

What the piece misses are the media measures – or propaganda – which accompanies all such U.S. campaigns. That is not unwittingly as the NYT is always an integral part of such campaigns. The usual justification is “terrorism” or the “moral” need to eliminate a “brutal regime”. The piece accordingly list a few alleged terrorism incidents with origin in Somalia to justify the massive, decades long uprooting of a whole country.

The scheme visible in Somalia is the same one that is applied in Libya, in Syria and in the Ukraine. The U.S. hires some group willing to wage war for a decent pay, lots of weapons and a chance to – may be – reach a lot of power for itself. It sends some mercenary company to “train” those forces, PR agencies get hired to provide the necessary media background, U.S. military forces are silently involved but only from far away via drones, or in mini special force formation that train and direct the local proxies.

The CIA is usually in the lead with the U.S. military providing firepower as needed. The State Department handles the diplomatic hurdles, pampers the proxies and so called allies and, together with the Treasury, generously applies devastating sanctions to bend the people to its will.

The methods are not dissimilar to those used during the last century mainly in south America. But the wars are now more open with more brute force applied.

The big question for the rest of the world is how such mostly hidden wars can be countered. They are very difficult to win by force on the ground. The U.S. will not change course because a few of its mercenaries get eliminated. The obvious answer is to increase the price the U.S. directly has to pay. The hurt must be painful enough to raise above the public negligence level that usually applies. Terrorism within the U.S. can and has been used. But I expect new, more subtle methods to be a part of the future answer. The cyber realm is ideal for asymmetric forces. A few knowledgeable fighters are sufficient. To counter them is difficult. The U.S. is probable the most sensitive target for cyber mayhem while the nations the U.S. attacks are mostly insensitive to such attacks.

No matter of what new ways of war the U.S. applies. Those attacked will always find ways to hit back.

Source: moonofalabama