by Stephen Lendman

It’s not the first time.
     It won’t be the last.
           It didn’t surprise.

Obama represents the worst of rogue state governance. He’s a war criminal multiple times over. He heads a repressive police state apparatus.

He’s ravaging one country after another. He’s waging war on humanity. He’s doing it at home and abroad. He risks global war.

At the same time, he finds new ways to humiliate himself. He further denigrates America in the process. He cancelled a long-planned Moscow summit with Vladimir Putin.

It was scheduled ahead of the September 5 and 6 St. Petersburg G20 summit. No longer. New York Times editors urged him not to go. They did so disgracefully. A separate article discussed it.

At issue is the brouhaha over Russia granting Edward Snowden asylum. It was done honorably by the book. It was right and proper to do.

Snowden’s a world hero. He exposed lawless NSA spying. It’s done globally. Everyone targeted is monitored all the time everywhere. Doing so is unconstitutional. It doesn’t matter. Obama calls it OK.

He’s taking his wrath out on Russia. He’s mindless about rule of law principles. He’s irresponsibly harming bilateral relations. He’s risking world peace.

It’s back to the future. Reinventing Cold War politics perhaps is likely. According to The Times, unnamed officials said he’s frustrated about Russia’s refusal to extradite Snowden.

Risking Bradley Manning type treatment won’t be tolerated. He’ll be brutalized if sent home. He’s been declared guilty by accusation.

He’ll be denied judicial fairness. He’ll face certain long term hard time. He’ll never again be free. It’s the American way.

Thousands of political prisoners languish gulag hell. It’s the world’s largest. It’s one of the worst.

Obama’s angry with Russia on Syria. He wants Putin help destroy another country. He wants what he won’t get. America’s more adept at making enemies than friends.

Obama excels at doing it. His high-sounding rhetoric rings hollow. It reflects lies, damn lies, and rogue state policy.


An official White House cancellation statement said:

“Following a careful review begun in July, we have reached the conclusion that there is not enough recent progress in our bilateral agenda with Russia to hold a US-Russia Summit in early September.”

“We value the achievements made with Russia in the President’s first term, including the New START Treaty, and cooperation on Afghanistan, Iran, and North Korea.”

“However, given our lack of progress on issues such as missile defense and arms control, trade and commercial relations, global security issues, and human rights and civil society in the last twelve months, we have informed the Russian Government that we believe it would be more constructive to postpone the summit until we have more results from our shared agenda.”

“Russia’s disappointing decision to grant Edward Snowden temporary asylum was also a factor that we considered in assessing the current state of our bilateral relationship.”

“Our cooperation on these issues remains a priority for the United States, so on Friday, August 9, Secretaries Hagel and Kerry will meet with their Russian counterparts in a 2+2 format in Washington to discuss how we can best make progress moving forward on the full range of issues in our bilateral relationship.”

“The President still looks forward to traveling to St. Petersburg on September 5-6 to attend the G-20 Summit.”

Perhaps he should be disinvited in response.

He’ll snub Putin a second time. He won’t meet him face-to-face. He accused him of Cold War tactics. He turned truth on its head claiming it.

Hardline US lawmakers urged Obama to cancel. Senator Chuck Schumer (D. NY) is AIPAC’s man in Washington.

“The president clearly made the right decision,” he said. “President Putin is acting like a schoolyard bully and doesn’t deserve the respect a bilateral summit would have accorded him.”

Obama’s snub set a precedent. It’s the first time a US president cancelled an announced Moscow visit since the Cold War ended.

He’ll spend two extra days in Stockholm instead. White House spokesman Jay Carney called Sweden a “close friend and partner to the United States.”

Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt’s subservient to imperial US interests. So are others in his coalition government.

Moscow expressed disappointment. America’s not ready for prime time. For sure, not Obama, key administration officials, and congressional hardliners. They infest both parties. They mock legitimate governance.

According to Putin aide Yuri Ushakov, what happened “shows that the US is still not ready to build relations with Russia on an equal footing.”

For many years, Washington refused to extradite 20 or more hardened criminals. Russia wants them prosecuted. They’re given sanctuary. They remain free.

US policy is do what we say, not what we do. It’s one-way. It’s offensive. America doesn’t care. It’s an out-of-control rogue state.

Russia’s invitation stands, said Ushakov. Moscow’s “ready to continue working with our American partners on all the key issues of the bilateral and multilateral agenda.”

Washington doesn’t reciprocate. It punishes. It’s longstanding policy. Rogue states operate that way.

Stephen Lendman

Is Obama losing it?

Michael Collins

President Barack Obama’s recent behavior is cause for concern. He never lived up to his progressive image but at least he wasn’t Bush, we were told. That sterling quality may have persuaded the Nobel Prize judges in 2009 but it’s meaningless now. Obama is staking out his own form of petulant, erratic, and paranoid behavior that stands on it’s own as the basis for his failure to rise to the occasion of multiple crises.


Obama’s petulance was shown just this week when he cancelled a bilateral meeting with Russia’s President Vladimir Putin. The topic was world peace. The cancellation represents an insult to Putin and Russia since Obama will be in St. Petersburg, Russia for the G-20 economic summit, which Putin is attending. Why the petulance?

Obama is miffed that Russia gave whistleblower Edward Snowden temporary asylum, thus refusing Obama’s demands that Snowden be shipped back to the United States to stand trial on charges of espionage. Think about it. A U.S. court grants a Russian whistleblower asylum and, after the decision, President Putin demands that Obama overrule the court, handcuff the whistleblower, and send him back to Russia. The howls of protest would be deafening. But, Obama had no problem making this request of Putin.


Obama’s behavior in Middle East affairs has been painfully and conspicuously erratic. Two recent examples come to mind.

The Egyptian people rose up and demanded that the failed government of former President Mohamed Morsy be removed. Tens of millions signed petitions and protested starting June 30. A plunging economy for twelve months and dictatorial powers assumed by Morsy to impose a Muslim Brotherhood constitution were too much for the majority of Egyptians.

The Obama administration threatened to pull a long-term annual subsidy to the Egyptian military, part of the Camp David accords years ago. When Secretary of State John Kerry made a positive remark about the new government while traveling in Egypt, the White House rebuked him. Now, there are reports that Obama will meet with Muslim Brotherhood leader in Washington, with Turkish diplomats in attendance.

Failing to accept the new government and entertaining the opponents whose members roam the streets of Cairo in gangs attacking civilians and police encourages a continuation of the Muslim Brotherhood’s violent resistance to change. Obama seems indifferent to these outcomes.

In Syria, Obama feigned reluctance to act in behalf of the Syrian rebels, featuring Al Qaeda terrorists known as Al-Nusra. In fact, the administration, along with some NATO partners and the Gulf state oligarchies, pushed violent resistance all along through $1.0 billion in “humanitarian” funding to Syrian rebels.

Obama’s actions are, quire simply, a war crime under the Nuremberg Protocols that ban: “VI, (ii) Participation in a common plan or conspiracy for the accomplishment of any of the acts mentioned in (i)” [i.e., a "war of aggression"].

The administration’s aid to the invasion of Syria by Al Qaeda its jihadist sympathizers (who do the heavy fighting) represents a strange policy for an administration that claims to fight Al Qaeda elsewhere.

General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, the leader of Egypt’s military told the nation that the army was fighting terrorism in the form of Muslim Brotherhood violence in response to the removal of the failed President Morsy. Syrian President Bashar al-Assad claims to be fighting terrorism in his war against Al-Nusra. Despite his poor record on human rights, Assad is correct. The Syrian government is in direct conflict with the Al Qaeda contingent benefiting from the $1.0 billion to fellow Syrian rebels provided by Obama.

What strange logic is Obama using to justify supporting the Muslim Brotherhood and Al Qaeda aligned Al-Nusra?


Before the Snowden whistleblowing on NSA spying on all citizens, the Obama administration put in place the Insider Threat Program. McClatchy Washington Bureau reports described this as an “unprecedented initiative” to control public access to government information. According to documents reviewed by McClatchy, the program “pursues unauthorized disclosures of any information, not just classified material.”

A key feature of the program requires Federal employees to turn in fellow employees suspected of the unauthorized release of information. This isn’t spying or espionage. It involves ethical public servants releasing information for the public good. Leaking, as it’s called, is a time-honored tradition from the White House to Congress to the bureaucracy. Now it is a felony to release this information or to fail to report suspicions about its release. The program turns the government into a nest of snitches.

What does Obama fear? Why is he so suspicious of anyone knowing what’s really behind his policies? Is he verging on paranoia in this unprecedented level of control?

Obama certainly seems to be blowing it.

Obama was unable to control his emotional response to a perceived insult, Putin’s refusal to turn Snowden over, thus trashing a major power meeting with the president of Russia.

Through the examination of objective evidence in the Egyptian change of government and the Syrian conflict, Obama has sympathized (Egypt) and taken the side (Syria) of violent political groups – the Muslim Brotherhood and Al Qaeda.

Obama’s paranoid behavior regarding federal employees ensures snitching will become a major focus in the bureaucracy.

The outcome of continued petulant, erratic and paranoid behavior by the president guarantees lousy government for the remainder of his term. If he somehow gets away with this and positions Hillary Clinton as the next president, we are in for more of the same or worse. If he’s held accountable with a negative public reaction, he’ll usher in a Republican candidate who will be even worse.


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