Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from May 9, 2014

Keith Alexander Unplugged: on Bush/Obama, 1.7 million stolen documents and other matters

By By Glenn Greenwald

"Firstlook" - - The just-retired long-time NSA chief, Gen. Keith Alexander, recently traveled to Australia to give a remarkably long and wide-ranging interview with an extremely sycophantic “interviewer” with The Australian Financial Review. The resulting 17,000-word transcript and accompanying article form a model of uncritical stenography journalism, but Alexander clearly chose to do this because he is angry, resentful, and feeling unfairly treated, and the result is a pile of quotes that are worth examining, only a few of which are noted below:


AFR: What were the key differences for you as director of NSA serving under presidents Bush and Obama? Did you have a preferred commander in chief?

Gen. Alexander: Obviously they come from different parties, they view things differently, but when it comes to the security of the nation and making those decisions about how to protect our nation, what we need to do to defend it, they are, ironically, very close to t…

Ukraine: It's Now For The Long Run

By Moon Of Alabama

"MOA" - From a February 2008 wikileaked cable by the U.S. embassy in Moscow:
Experts tell us that Russia is particularly worried that the strong divisions in Ukraine over NATO membership, with much of the ethnic-Russian community against membership, could lead to a major split, involving violence or at worst, civil war. In that eventuality, Russia would have to decide whether to intervene; a decision Russia does not want to have to face.

Russia decided to not intervene, for now, and to leave the poison cocktail the "west" created boiling and in the "west's" responsibility.

Putin's offer from yesterday was not accepted within the Ukraine. The coup government announced to continue its "anti-terrorism" campaign against federalists in the east and the federalists in Donetsk and Lugansk announced not to cancel their referendum.

Elsewhere Putin's offer was somewhat accepted. It had, as Putin had announced, already been coordi…

Iran and the P5+1: Solving the Nuclear Rubik’s Cube

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY AND RECOMMENDATIONS

In a region of troubles, the negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program stand out. The first-step agreement, signed in November 2013, broke a decade of futile diplomatic forays punctuated by mutual escalation. The product of a rare confluence of political calendars and actors, it set a framework for a balanced arms-control agreement that could form the basis of a comprehensive nuclear accord. But reasons for caution abound. It is easier to pause than to reverse the escalation pitting centrifuges against sanctions. Mistrust remains deep, time is short, and the process remains vulnerable to pressure from domestic and regional detractors. In bringing the sides together, the accord revealed the chasm that separates them. Success is possible only with political will to isolate the deal – at least for now – from its complex regional context. It will ultimately be sustainable only if the parties, building on its momentum, recognise that their rival’s legiti…