US State Department exempts 11 Countries from Iran Sanctions

By JOSH ROGIN | FOREIGN POLICY | MARCH 21, 2012

The State Department announced on Tuesday that it would exempt 10 European countries and Japan from penalties for doing business with Iran’s central bank, because those countries are making significant progress toward weaning themselves off of Iranian oil.

“I am pleased to announce that an initial group of eleven countries has significantly reduced their volume of crude oil purchases from Iran — Belgium, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, and the United Kingdom. As a result, I will report to the Congress that sanctions pursuant to Section 1245 of the National Defense Authorization Act for 2012 (NDAA) will not apply to the financial institutions based in these countries, for a renewable period of 180 days,” Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said in a Tuesday statement. “The actions taken by these countries were not easy. They had to rethink their energy needs at a critical time for the world economy and quickly begin to find alternatives to Iranian oil, which many had been reliant on for their energy needs.”

The European Union banned all new purchases of Iranian crude oil as of Jan. 23 and will phase out existing contracts by July 1, Clinton said. Japan was able to reduce its dependence on Iranian oil even despite energy shortages created by the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

“We commend these countries for their actions and urge other nations that import oil from Iran to follow their example,” said Clinton. “Diplomacy coupled with strong pressure can achieve the long-term solutions we seek and we will continue to work with our international partners to increase the pressure on Iran to meet its international obligations.”

Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ), who co-authored the sanctions against the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) and those who do business with it, praised the State Department’s move in a Tuesday statement of his own.

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Google: Don’t be Hypocrite!

by Luis R. Miranda
The Real Agenda
January 19, 2012

Yesterday The Real Agenda explained what would a government controlled Internet would mean for all of us. Today, I want to help us understand how Google, Yahoo and other Internet giants are playing as hypocrites. Many technology corporations, but especially Google supported a major shutdown to protest a government initiative to gain more control of the Internet. However, Google itself is an NSA creation. So why would this Internet monster show opposition to a government sponsored bill that in fact would give it even more dominance in the race to monopolize the net?

Google is already operating on SOPA and PIPA-like measures, blacking out websites and information that should be circulating free on the Internet. Google also helps Youtube remove content from its site, promptly responding to government requests to censure video and audio files. And no, I am not talking about copyright violations. Most of the times the censored content is audio, text or video that directly criticizes government policies around the world.

The real reason Google, Yahoo and other Internet companies are really supporting the movement to oppose SOPA and PIPA is because although these companies are controlled by the governments, there is a power struggle between the giants’ operating heads and their equals in government. Google couldn’t care less about an open, free internet. In fact, this company aids nations like China to carry out mass censorship of websites stationed outside the asian country so that its people cannot access information from abroad.

While Google publicly says that it supports Internet freedom, in private it eliminates websites from its search engines and news search feature. Google de-listed mainly alternative news websites, that in many occasions attract more readers than main stream media sites. Google’s owners are publicly supporters of Barack Obama as well as attendees of the yearly meeting known as Bilderberg. That opens some room to think that Google’s censorship is, in part, a more against political dissent.

The important point here is that whether you agree or not with anyone’s position on politics, the economy or anything else, there is no room to allow politicians or corporations to determine what content is seen and which content is censored. There is no legitimacy on any initiative to give partial or complete control of a tool that has been built with taxpayers’ money to a single government or corporation. As a reminder, although Google itself built much of its operating platform, the truth is that it navigates its tentacles on citizen-owned property.

So if Google and other search engines are already “doing it”, why do they need a law? It has been a common occurrence that when the powers that be desire to impose censorship or any other kind of limitation on The People, they do it incrementally and as quietly as possible. It is exactly on that incremental and quiet nature that lies the success of their freedom-ending policies. Now that Google and Youtube have managed to get away with censorship inside the USA and elsewhere, it is just the right time to introduce legislation that once and for all makes it legal to censor anyone who does no comply with political correctness and government policy. This is what happens in China today.

Don’t expect the US government to simply shelf the SOPA and PIPA bills as the main stream whore media is reporting. They will do the same they did with NDAA, Cybersecurity Act and Patriot Act: Shelf it for a while, until some fake intelligence is thrown out. Then there will be 80 accomplices in Congress who will vote for it and a puppet president to sign it into law. It is also important to remember that just because something is the law, does not mean it is legal. More often than not it is illegal.

U.S. to strip citizenship from Americans under Enemy Expatriation Act

http://platform.twitter.com/widgets/hub.1326407570.htmlRussia Today
January 16, 2012

When Barack Obama inked the National Defense Authorization Act on New Year’s Eve, the president insisted that he wouldn’t use the terrifying legislation against American citizens. Another new law, however, could easily change all of that.

If the Enemy Expatriation Act passes in its current form, the legislation will let the government strike away citizenship for anyone engaged in hostilities, or supporting hostilities, against the United States. The law itself is rather brief, but in just a few words it warrants the US government to strip nationality status from anyone they identify as a threat.

What’s more, the government can decide to do so without bringing the suspected troublemaker before a court of law.

Under the legislation, “hostilities” are defined as “any conflict subject to the laws of war” and does not explicitly state that charges against suspects go to court.

When Obama signed NDAA on December 31, the president said that his administration “will not authorize the indefinite military detention without trial of American citizens.” Added the president, “Indeed, I believe that doing so would break with our most important traditions and values as a Nation.” But by breaking off ties between citizens — American-born or otherwise — the harsh realities of NDAA can be forced on anyone in the US if Washington decides that it is in the country’s best interest.

The National Defense Authorization Act drew widespread opposition despite a lack of media cover due to the capabilities in bestows in the administration. Under NDAA, the government can indefinitely imprison anyone deemed dangerous by Washington and hold them without trial. After criticism led to massive online campaigns and protests, President Obama addressed the issue and said specifically that his administration would not understand the law as such. Instead, said Obama, “My administration will interpret section 1021 in a manner that ensures that any detention it authorizes complies with the Constitution, the laws of war, and all other applicable law.”

Some are now saying that Obama’s attempt at discrediting the NDAA by insisting that he would not use it against American citizens came only as a precursor to the latest Act. By adding his signing statement to the NDAA, the president insured that legislation such as the Enemy Expatriation Act would surface to strike any limitations that would have kept Americans free from military detainment. “I hope I’m wrong, but it sounds to me like this is a loophole for indefinitely detaining Americans,” Stephen . Foster, Jr. writes on the AddictionInfo.org website. “Once again, you just have to be accused of supporting hostilities which could be defined any way the government sees fit. Then the government can strip your citizenship and apply the indefinite detention section of the NDAA without the benefit of a trial.”

The bill, currently being passed through Congress, is sponsored by Joe Lieberman (I-CT) and Charles Dent (R-PA).

Obama Signs the “National Defense Authorization Act

By Michel Chossudovsky
Global Research
January 1, 2012

With minimal media debate, at a time when Americans were celebrating the New Year with their loved ones,  the “National Defense Authorization Act ” H.R. 1540 was signed into law by President Barack Obama. The actual signing took place in Hawaii on the 31st of December.According to Obama’s “signing statement”, the threat of Al Qaeda to the Security of the Homeland constitutes a justification for repealing fundamental rights and freedoms, with a stroke of the pen.The controversial signing statement (see transcript below) is a smokescreen. Obama says he disagrees with the NDAA but he signs it into law.

“[I have] serious reservations with certain provisions that regulate the detention, interrogation, and prosecution of suspected terrorists.”

Obama implements “Police State USA”, while acknowledging that certain provisions of  the NDAA are unacceptable. If such is the case, he could have either vetoed the NDAA (H.R. 1540) or sent it back to Congress with his objections.

The “National Defense Authorization Act ” (H.R. 1540) is Obama’s New Year’s “Gift” to the American People.

He justifies the signing of the NDAA as a means to combating terrorism, as part of a counter-terrorism agenda.  But in substance, any American opposed to the policies of the US government can –under the provisions of the NDAA– be labelled a “suspected terrorist” and arrested under military detention.

“Moreover, I want to clarify that my Administration will not authorize the indefinite military detention without trial of American citizens. Indeed, I believe that doing so would break with our most important traditions and values as a Nation. My Administration will interpret section 1021 in a manner that ensures that any detention it authorizes complies with the Constitution, the laws of war, and all other applicable law.”

Barack Obama is a lawyer (a graduate from Harvard Law School). He knows fair well that his signing statement –which parrots his commitment to democracy– is purely cosmetic. It has no force of law.

The signing statement does not in any way invalidate or modify the actual signing by President Obama of NDAA (H.R. 1540) into law.

“Democratic Dictatorship” in America

The “National Defense Authorization Act ” (H.R. 1540) repeals the US Constitution. While the facade of democracy prevails, supported by media propaganda, the American republic is fractured. The tendency is towards the establishment of a totalitarian State, a military government dressed in civilian clothes.

The passage of  NDAA is intimately related to Washington’s global military agenda. The military pursuit of Worldwide hegemony also requires the “Militarization of the Homeland”, namely the demise of the American Republic.

In substance, the signing statement is intended to mislead Americans and provide a “democratic face” to the President as well as to the unfolding post-911 Military Police State apparatus.

The “most important traditions and values” in derogation of the US Constitution have indeed been repealed, effective on New Year’s Day, January 1st 2012.

The NDAA authorises the arbitrary and indefinite military detention of American citizens.

The Lessons of History

This New Year’s Eve December 31, 2011 signing of the NDAA will indelibly go down as a landmark in American history.

If we are to put this in a comparative historical context, the relevant provisions of the NDAA HR 1540 are, in many regards, comparable to those contained in the “Decree of the Reich President for the Protection of People and State”, commonly known as the “Reichstag Fire Decree” (Reichstagsbrandverordnung) enacted in Germany under the Weimar Republic on 27 February 1933 by President (Field Marshal) Paul von Hindenburg.

Implemented in the immediate wake of the Reichstag Fire (which served as a pretext), this February 1933 decree was used to repeal civil liberties including the right of Habeas Corpus.

Article 1 of the February 1933 “Decree of the Reich President for the Protection of People and State” suspended civil liberties under the pretext of “protecting” democracy: “Thus, restrictions on personal liberty, on the right of free expression of opinion, including freedom of the press, on the right of association and assembly, and violations of the privacy of postal, telegraphic, and telephonic communications, and warrants for house-searches, orders for confiscations, as well as restrictions on property rights are permissible beyond the legal limits otherwise prescribed.” (Art. 1, emphasis added)

Constitutional democracy was nullified in Germany through the signing of a presidential decree.

The Reichstag Fire decree was followed in March 1933 by “The Enabling Act” ( Ermächtigungsgesetz) which allowed (or enabled) the Nazi government of Chancellor Adolf Hitler to invoke de facto dictatorial powers. These two decrees enabled the Nazi regime to introduce legislation which was in overt contradiction with the 1919 Weimar Constitution.

The following year, upon the death of president Hindenburg in 1934, Hitler “declared the office of President vacant”  and took over as Fuerer, the combined function’s of Chancellor and Head of State.

Obama’s New Year’s Gift to the American People

To say that January 1st 2012 is “A Sad Day for America” is a gross understatement.The signing of NDAA (HR 1540) into law is tantamount to the militarization of law enforcement, the repeal of the Posse Comitatus Act and the Inauguration in 2012 of Police State USA.As in Weimar Germany, fundamental rights and freedoms are repealed under the pretext that democracy is threatened and must be protected.The NDAA is “Obama’s New Year’s Gift” to the American People. …

Martial Law Attempt In Louisiana Echoes Ron Paul’s Warning

by Kurt Nimmo
Infowars.com
December 21, 2011

Following the fatal shooting of a toddler in a crime ridden New Orleans housing project, a Louisiana state representative has called for what amounts to martial law.

 

Austin Badon contacted Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal’s office Monday and asked that the National Guard be deployed. Jindal’s office said Badon was told that any such a request would have to come from the New Orleans mayor Mitch Landrieu.

Under Article I, Section 8, Clause 15 of the Constitution, the National Guard – considered a state militia – is authorized to “execute the laws of the Union and suppress Insurrections and repel Invasion.” The Constitution says nothing about dispatching the military to fight domestic crime, a task usually undertaken by local law enforcement.

Since the National Defense Act (or Militia Act) of 1903, the federal government has worked to absorb the National Guard and take control of it away from the states. In 2007, the John Warner Defense Authorization Act moved to remove state governors as sole commanders in chief of their state’s National Guard during emergencies within the state.

On December 18, presidential candidate Ron Paul warned (see video below) that the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) passed recently by the House and now under consideration in the Senate will be used by the government to implement martial law. The bill would allow the military to detain Americans and prevent them from exercising their right to due process under the Sixth Amendment.

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