The U.S. launched missiles into Syria aimed at the Shayrat Syrian military air base after a chemical attack killed 80 civilians. The New York Times reports “Dozens of Tomahawk missiles were fired” in what counts as “the first time that the White House had ordered military action against forces loyal to the Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad.” CNBC reports, “A U.S. official said the Russians had been warned before the U.S. launched 59 tomahawk missiles at Syria”. POLITICO reports the strikes “occurred at 4:40 a.m. local Syrian time to try to avoid any casualties,” and “The goal was to render the airfield unusable and deter Assad regime from future use of chemical weapons.” On Thursday, The Washington Post reports the Turkish Health Ministry said, “The chemical used in an attack that killed scores of Syrian civilians was most likely the deadly nerve agent sarin,” The Washington Post’s Josh Rogin reported on Twitter, “Trump administration told Russia about its war plans before they told the U.S. Congress.”  POLITICO reports, “Trump rebuked Assad in remarks announcing the strikes, saying the Syrian strongman had ‘choked out the lives of helpless men, women and children’ during the toxic gas attack that killed dozens earlier this week,” and added “‘Even beautiful babies were cruelly murdered in this very barbaric attack. No child of God should ever suffer such horror.’” Wow! TRUMPISTAN WATCH at last check of Trump family attitudes towards these “beautiful babies” heard Trump’s son compare them to undesirable Skittles and Trump himself has stated that they needed to be kept out of our country to protect the American people until “we find out what the hell is going on!” Will Trump tell Customs and Border Protection now that the Syrian children who suffered during this brutal war are “beautiful” and withdraw his ill-conceived, racist, xenophobic Muslim travel ban now? Doubtful. And by Friday morning in the U.S., an ABC News report emerged that the Syrians appeared to be “evacuating personnel and moving equipment ahead of the strike, according to an eyewitness to the strike”. Oh and yesterday was 100 years since American entered World War I.

From The New York Times, CNBC, POLITICO, The Washington Post and ABC News.



The Washington Post reports, “Russia on Friday condemned the U.S. missile strike against Syrian government forces as an attack against its ally, and said it was pulling out of an agreement to minimize the risk of in-flight incidents between U.S. and Russian aircraft operating over Syria.” The suspension of a 2015 memorandum of understanding “immediately raised tensions”. The Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, “President Putin considers the American strikes against Syria an aggression against a sovereign government in violations of the norms of international law,” adding it was occurring “under a far-fetched pretext,” which is just Russia’s way of denying apparent war crimes and the criminal use of chemical weapons by an ally. Earlier Thursday before the strikes, Peskov told The AP that “support for Assad is not unconditional”.

From The Washington Post.



Official son-in-law, princeling Jared Kushner “sought” a Top Secret security clearance but failed to disclose “dozens of contacts he has had with foreign leaders or officials in recent months” including “a December meeting with the Russian ambassador, Sergey I. Kislyak, and another with the head of a Russian state-owned bank, Vnesheconombank, which was arranged at the behest of Mr. Kislyak,” according to The New York Times citing “people with direct knowledge of them who asked for anonymity because the questionnaire is not a public document.” The situation as such at the moment is a strange sort of security clearance limbo where he clearly has access to everything the president may have access to but “Aides to Mr. Kushner said he was in the process of compiling that material and would share it when he is interviewed by the F.B.I. Until then, they said, Mr. Kushner has an interim security clearance.” This is way more than mere bureaucracy as “The form warns that ‘withholding, misrepresenting, or falsifying information’ could result in the loss of access to classified information, denial of eligibility for a sensitive position and even prosecution; knowingly falsifying or concealing material facts is a federal felony that may result in fines or up to five years imprisonment.” The New York Times notes, “Mr. Kushner is the second top White House official to have problems concerning his dealings with foreign officials.” Flynn of course would be the first. Meanwhile CNN reports princeling Jared “has yet to detail to the federal government all of his foreign contacts”.

From The New York Times and CNN.



The AP reports “As part of a sweeping hunt for any accomplices of the St. Petersburg suicide bomber, investigators Wednesday rounded up seven suspected Islamic State recruiters from the Central Asia region of the former Soviet Union but found no immediate evidence of their involvement in the subway attack.” Accordingly, “The Investigative Committee hasn’t caught any associates of 22-year-old Akbarzhon Dzhalilov, a native of the Central Asian nation of Kyrgyzstan.” Lastly, citing Russian state-run TASS, AP reports, “An unidentified law enforcement official told the Tass news agency that investigators were checking information that Dzhalilov may have trained with the Islamic State group in Syria. Tass said he reportedly flew to Turkey in November 2015 and spent a long time abroad.” And for a glimpse at how miserable Russia is for Central Asian migrants: “His parents arrived Wednesday in St. Petersburg for questioning after being interrogated by Kyrgyz security services. They identified his remains, according to the Investigative Committee.” Ergo, there is no more reason to protest, the instability is too much! Stay quiet Russians! Trust your security forces, who are innocent of all things, but most of all murder and ever-planting bombs in false flag operations – they would never do that! And the beautiful thing is, we will likely never know if they did this time because credibility as always is an issue with the Russian government.

From The AP and Reuters.





Now that Trump has sent missiles flying into Syria in an attack that the Syrians seemingly had advance knowledge of and provides both Trump and Putin with everything they need for domestic politics, let’s circle back to the alleged deep state conspiracy against Trump and laugh a long bitter laugh. What bullshit! This as “The C.I.A. told senior lawmakers in classified briefings last summer that it had information indicating that Russia was working to help elect Donald J. Trump president,” according to The New York Times. Accordingly, “The briefings indicate that intelligence officials had evidence of Russia’s intentions to help Mr. Trump much earlier in the presidential campaign than previously thought.” Former CIA director John Brennan “was so concerned about increasing evidence of Russia’s election meddling that he began a series of urgent, individual briefings for eight top members of Congress, some of them on secure phone lines while they were on their summer break.” And now let’s return to the ludicrous claim that Trump’s team had their civil rights violated in some elaborate “unmasking” conspiracy when Brennan in fact told Congress that “unnamed advisers to Mr. Trump might be working with the Russians to interfere in the election.” Recall: Trump believes our CIA is a bunch of Nazis. Is this how Nazis work? Or do they work like the actual Nazis, specifically Steve Bannon and Sebastian Gorka, in Trump’s administration? But deep state!

From The New York Times.



Rep. Devin Nunes, who in recent weeks has behaved every bit like the palace lackey for Trump, which invariably means a reality TV freak sideshow for mass consumption, is stepping down from his role as chairman of the House intelligence committee. According to Reuters, Nunes is forced to because “he is under investigation for disclosing classified information,a charge The Washington Post calls “rare” citing procedural matters in that the allegations must “oblige the committee to look into the matter, under House rules.” Despite the utterly inexplicable nature of his own actions in recent weeks, promoting an “unmasked” narrative that sees Trump administration officials whining that their calls with Russian spies were eavesdropped on; Nunes nonetheless blamed political opponents. “Several leftwing activist groups have filed accusations against me with the Office of Congressional Ethics,” Nunes said in a statement cited by Reuters. For some inexplicable reason, the spineless “House Republican leaders, including Speaker Paul Ryan, praised Nunes.” Why? And for what? Giving the masses a bogus narrative they can latch onto if they are politically inclined? As with all things DARKNESS AT NUNES, there is not much relief in that “In the meantime, Rep. K. Michael Conaway (R-Tex.) will take the lead on the Russia investigation, Nunes said, with assistance from Reps. Thomas J. Rooney (R-Fla.) and Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.).” Gowdy in particular is known for ridiculous partisan questions, especially when he “chaired a select committee looking into the deaths of four Americans in Benghazi, Libya, in 2012,” and he also sits on the House ethics committee investigating Nunes. Pray for America, and the Republican Party in particular to get its head out of the Kremlin’s ass, especially since Trump called Nunes “a very honorable guy,” according to The AP.

From Reuters, The Washington Post and The AP.





This is not just a presidential administration it is also a reality show which those most prone to normalizing might mislabel “palace intrigue”. So with this in mind, The New York Times cautions, “while some people are crediting General McMaster with a big win, the reality is much different.” The Guardian wisely points out that of all the absurd explanations for the demotion of White House in-house Nazi Steve Bannon from the Security Council officially (CNN’s Jim Acosta reports on Twitter he was still attending Situation Room meetings), “the most absurd explanation is what’s already being touted in the media as a ‘shift towards normalcy’.” The Guardian notes, responsibly, that “some skepticism is warranted regarding the superior functioning of a more ‘normal’ NSC” given that under Kissinger, it was a one-man show and during the invasion of Iraq, “Colin Powell had a seat on the NSC but no actual power”.  The Guardian helpfully describes Bannon’s role as one of translating “Trump’s racial dog whistles into white nationalist sirens” and his “chief qualification is running a website that publishes stories such as ‘Birth control makes women unattractive and crazy’.” All true. Most importantly however as it concerns Trump’s style of mismanagement is that “Both Bannon’s and Kushner’s appointments are a testament to Trump’s valuing of loyalty above all worldly concerns of expertise, basic competence and truth.”  Additionally The New York Times notes, “The idea that the 30-year-old Mr. Cohen-Watnick,” who McMaster wanted out but survived thanks to a divine intervention from princeling Jared, “should be senior director for intelligence programs — a position held by senior career C.I.A. officers in the Obama administration and others — is dubious.” The New York Times adds, “Mr. Cohen-Watnick helped run interference for the administration against Congress in the Russia investigation,” by empowering the bogus narrative of “unmasked” officials facilitated by Rep. Devin Nunes. In conclusion, “this is the normalcy we are returning to: a nepotistic mafia where official titles mean little and true power comes from being in the fickle favor of the president, where US foreign policy is run not out of the State Department but by the Trump dynasty.” Just like a proper -stan where the Ministry of Foreign Affairs knows nothing but the family is everything. Forward toward the future great state!

From The New York Times and The Guardian.





The Moscow Times writes, “The State Duma has voted against a proposal to launch an inquiry into recent corruption allegations against Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev.” Recall the protests of a few weekends ago on March 26 lead by Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny targeted Medvedev and made much of his penchant for online shopping and excess, including a vineyard in Italy. The Moscow Times reports, “A bid by the Communist Party to probe the veracity of claims made by opposition firebrand Alexei Navalny, failed to get the required number of votes on Wednesday”.

From The Moscow Times.



How could the European Parliament not condemn Russian authorities’ crackdown on protest, what with a little angry man completely surrounded by yes men wholly disinterested in the welfare of his own people threatening continental security. Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reports from Brussels, “The European Parliament has overwhelmingly approved a resolution calling for the ‘immediate release and dropping of all charges’ against Russian opposition leader Aleksei Navalny ‘and all the peaceful protesters and journalists detained after the recent demonstrations in Russia.’ The April 6 declaration, which was supported by all political groups in the European Union’s Strasbourg-based parliament, also condemned what it called Russian police operations”. The European Parliament also expressed “deep concern” about a February court decision which “effectively excludes Aleksei Navalny from the political arena,” because the court upheld a conviction for financial crimes in 2013 that resulted in a suspended sentence.

From Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty.



The message from Navalny’s campaign chair is that Navalny is forced to “keep campaigning for authorities to cancel an election ban.” The AP reports “His campaign chief Leonid Volkov, who was released Wednesday after spending ten days in police custody for disobeying police orders,” said “the March 26 protests showed that Alexei Navalny is the politician who feels the political sentiment in the country most keenly.” To Putin though, the massive expression of dissent that spanned Russia’s 11 time zones, the biggest protests in years in Russia, were a mere expression of “narrow selfish political goals” divergent from Putin’s own narrow selfish political goals. Volkov, Navalny’s campaign chief, said, the goal now “is to get the Kremlin to overturn the ban by showing to them that the damage from not allowing Navalny to run is greater than the risk of allowing him on the ballot. The AP notes, “Navalny is a rare opposition politician who wants to campaign all over Russia instead of focusing on a few major urban areas.” To achieve this end, “He has opened campaign headquarters in nearly two dozen cities from western Russia to the Far East.”

From The AP.


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