The Saudi embassy in the United States pointed the finger at Doctors Without Borders after the US-backed Saudi coalition bombed the medical humanitarian group’s newly constructed cholera treatment center in Yemen.
The Saudi government circulated a misleading fax from a Doctors Without Borders (MSF) employee, to try to absolve itself of responsibility for the airstrike. I contacted MSF for clarification, and the organization said the fax is being misrepresented, and strongly condemned the “unacceptable attack on a medical facility.”
On June 11, the US-backed Saudi coalition waging war on Yemen bombed a cholera treatment center in the northwestern town of Abs. This medical facility, which had just been built, was operated by MSF, and was clearly marked on the roof with the logos of MSF and the Red Crescent.
Lawmakers have published a bipartisan letter calling on the US government to withdraw support for a military attack on Yemen’s port city of Hodeida, which could unleash a humanitarian disaster that starves millions of civilians.
Lawmakers from both major parties have published a letter calling on the U.S. government to withdraw support for a military attack on Yemen’s port city of Hodeida, which would almost certainly unleash a humanitarian disaster that could starve millions of people.
The letter — which follows in full below — was signed by prominent Democratic and Republican congressmen, and is directly addressed to Secretary of Defense James Mattis.
With blessings from the United States, military forces led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates launched an attack on Wednesday, June 13 on Hodeida, the site where some 80 percent of humanitarian aid enters Yemen, the poorest country in the Middle East.
The U.S. military is providing intelligence assistance to the Saudi- and Emirati-led forces in the battle. The U.S. has played a key role in the war in Yemen, since Saudi Arabia first launched its bombardment campaign in March 2015, selling the Gulf monarchy billions of dollars in weapons and providing in-air refueling and intelligence support.
The US-backed Saudi/Emirati coalition bombed a newly constructed cholera treatment center in Yemen run by MSF. This air attack comes after the impoverished country suffered through the worst cholera outbreak in recorded history.
A military coalition formally led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, and supported by the United States and Britain, bombed a newly constructed cholera treatment in Yemen on Monday, June 11.
This attack comes after Yemen, the poorest country in the Middle East, suffered through the worst cholera outbreak in recorded history, with more than 1 million cases reported in 2017 alone.
The cholera treatment center was operated by the humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders (known in French as Médecins Sans Frontières, or MSF). It was located in Yemen’s northwestern Hajjah Governorate, an area that has been heavily bombarded by Saudi Arabia for more than 3 years.
The Organization of American States (OAS) is a Cold War-era group that acts as a vehicle for US influence, opposing leftist governments in Latin America. Journalist Max Blumenthal challenged the OAS on its extreme anti-Venezuela bias and enlisting of right-wing pro-Israel lobbyists to demonize Nicolas Maduro.
BEN NORTON:It’s The Real News, I’m Ben Norton. The Organization of American States is a Cold War-era international body of countries in North and South America that claims to be independent and neutral, but, in reality, frequently acts as a proxy for the United States government.
The OAS is notorious for its extreme bias against left-wing governments in Latin America, particularly Cuba and Venezuela. Western corporate media outlets frequently echo the OAS’s anti-Cuba and anti-Venezuela reports, without providing any further information as to what exactly the OAS is, and what interests it serves.
In reality, however, the OAS was formed at the behest of the U.S. government as a coalition of anti-communist governments at the beginning of the Cold War. In 1948, the U.S. convened the International Conference of American States. At this meeting in Colombia, which was led by the U.S. Secretary of State and infamous cold warrior George Marshall, the right-wing governments of Latin America joined the U.S. in signing a charter that established the Organization of American States with the explicit goal of fighting the spread of socialism and defending capitalism in North and South America.
Although media outlets today cite the OAS as if it were supposedly an independent and impartial source, U.S. government bodies have openly admitted otherwise.
Journalist Sulome Anderson, whose reporting on Hezbollah has repeatedly been called into question, has admitted that one of her supposed Hezbollah sources is “incredibly unreliable,” after she was once again exposed for having reported false information.
On May 9, Anderson tweeted two videos that she claimed showed Iran supposedly firing missiles at the illegally Israel-occupied Golan. Numerous Twitter users immediately pointed out that the videos contained no such footage.
Anderson then deleted these tweets, and they were not archived. But an archived Google search shows the cached versions of the tweets:
Vox produced a flashy, extremely hawkish video fearmongering about the likelihood of a second Korean War—and all the experts featured in it just so happen to work for the United States government.
For the description under the six-minute video, which is dramatically titled “The Horrific Reality of a War With North Korea,” Vox wrote: “Five experts discuss what a war on the Korean peninsula would look like, how close we are to conflict, and the terrifying consequences.”
Who are those five experts opining on the prospects of a new war?
Andrew C. Weber, a former US assistant secretary of defense
Jung Pak, a former CIA analyst on North Korea
Dave Maxwell, a retired US Army colonel
Tammy Duckworth, a US senator representing Illinois
Bruce Bennett, a senior researcher at the RAND Corporation, which is bankrolled by the US government
That is to say, four of the five experts cited by Vox directly worked for the government. The fifth expert works at a think tank that is substantially financed by the Pentagon and does research contract work for it.
In its reporting on North Korea, Vox makes no pretense of neutrality or independence. The news outlet may not be state-owned, but it continues a well-established corporate media trend of reflexively echoing the positions of the US government as if they are undeniable facts and an objective reflection of reality—a trend that is also manifest in Vox‘s CIA-inspired reporting on Iran and other Official Enemies.
The US government spent at least $12 billion in Syria-related military and civilian expenses in the four years from 2014 through 2017, former ambassador Robert Ford disclosed in a House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing.
The United States spent at least $12 billion in Syria-related military and civilian expenses in the four years from 2014 through 2017, according to the former U.S. ambassador to the country.
This $12 billion is in addition to the billions more spent to pursue regime change in Syria in the previous three years, after war broke out in 2011.
This striking figure provides a further glimpse of the exorbitant sums of money the U.S. spent trying to topple the government in Damascus. It also bluntly contradicts claims by Syrian opposition supporters that the former administration of President Barack Obama “did nothing” in Syria, or that it supposedly did not seek regime change fervently enough.
“The cost of US military operations in Syria between FY 2014 and the end of FY 2017 was between $3 and $4 billion,” Ford said. “In addition to the cost of those military operations, the FY 2017 budget request included $430 [million] to build local security forces and the FY 2018 request was for $500 million.”
The right-wing government in Honduras, which enjoys the support of the United States, has for weeks waged a violent crackdown on protests amid widespread accusations that it stole the recent presidential election from the left-wing opposition.
There is strong evidence that the conservative ruling party planned to rig the November 26 election, which was criticized by international bodies for having numerous irregularities. Opposition political leaders say the state has launched a coup.
Mass protests erupted in response to the allegations of electoral fraud. In an attempt to quiet the dissent, Honduras’ incumbent right-wing government suspended constitutional rights and declared a curfew December 2, giving the army and police more powers to crush the protests.
At least 14 people were killed, including a teenage girl, in the subsequent days of government repression. Honduran police have shot and killed unarmed protesters, firing live bullets into large demonstrations. Dozens more protesters have been injured.
With this violent crackdown underway, one might expect the leading human rights organization in the U.S. to express concern. But Human Rights Watch was eerily silent.
The Trump administration, U.S.-funded fact-checking websites, prominent non-governmental organizations and leading media outlets including the Washington Post and Wall Street Journal are spreading discredited death counts that diminish the crimes of Nazi Germany in order to demonize communism.
These mythical figures rely on outlandish claims from The Black Book of Communism, a propagandistic tract that has been widely criticized for trivializing the Holocaust, sympathizing with Nazi collaborators and enabling neo-fascist political forces to rewrite history.
November 7 marked the 100th anniversary of the Bolshevik Revolution, which ushered in a century of communist revolutions and movements. On this centennial, the Trump administration declared the creation of the National Day for the Victims of Communism, and in a statement, rehashed an utterly false claim: “Over the past century, communist totalitarian regimes around the world have killed more than 100 million people.”
Though the 100 million death estimate has been discredited again and again, it continues to be repeated by right-wing ideologues seeking to brand communism as history’s worst crime. While large numbers of people died under the watch of governments that identified as communist, this fake statistic includes the tens of millions of Soviets who died in World War II during Nazi Germany’s genocidal onslaught as supposed “victims of communism.”
Donald Trump claimed during his campaign that he would change U.S. foreign policy, opportunistically condemning Hillary Clinton over her support for the “failed policy of … regime change.” Pundits predicted that Trump would usher in a new era. But as president, the far-right billionaire has doubled down on key elements of the bipartisan U.S. foreign policy consensus, resulting in a dangerous escalation of the so-called War on Terror.
Trump has placed aggression against Iran and staunch support for the regimes in Saudi Arabia and Israel front and center. While previous administrations assumed a similar agenda in the Middle East, Trump has embraced anti-Iran fervor to an unprecedented degree.
Trump has gone so far in his anti-Iran fervor that he has wound up whitewashing the crimes of al-Qaeda, blaming Tehran for past attacks that had actually been overseen by Salafi-jihadist leader Osama bin Laden.
In his anti-Iran speech in October, Trump tried to pin al-Qaeda bombings on Tehran, using ambiguous rhetoric that is reminiscent of the language alleging Iraq’s nonexistent weapons of mass destruction. Some media outlets that were critical of Trump’s speech and its many factual errors failed to draw attention to his whitewashing of al-Qaeda.