Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Behind West's Biased Coverage of Asia

July 28, 2016 (Tony Cartalucci - NEO) As the US loses ground in Asia, between its failure to coerce states to adopt its Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal, and its inability to garner greater support for its manufactured crisis in the South China Sea, it has doubled down on efforts to undermine and replace governments in the region it perceives as obstructive to its regional "primacy." 

Paramount to this process of undermining and removing governments, is the targeting and manipulation of public perception. This has always been an essential ingredient for special interests throughout human history. Today, the sophistication through which this is done is unprecedented. While all nations do this to a certain extent, the West has, by far, the largest and widest range of activities dedicated to this purpose.

Policy and objectives set out by corporate-financier funded think tanks are translated into media headlines and campaigns carried out by everyone from large Western news networks to hired bloggers and lobbyists posing as independent third parties. Together, this concerted effort is meant to maximize perceived credibility, and can even take a non-news event, and turn it into a minor crisis.

Just such an example has been exposed, just days before a crucial referendum in Thailand regarding the Southeast Asia nation's new charter.

The new charter is meant to set the nation back on course after over a decade of political instability rooted in the rise and fall of US-backed billionaire, mass murderer, and convicted criminal Thaksin Shinawatra. Should the charter pass, it will deliver yet another blow to a political machine the US has invested heavily in for over a decade, and further contribute to the US' geopolitical retreat from the region as a whole.

While the regime of Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Turkey locks away thousands of political opponents, and even ponders executions for them with only muted protest from the West's politicians and media networks, a single alleged arrest in Thailand set off a minor firestorm across the Western media - highlighting the biased, politically-motivated nature of so-called Western journalism and how it seeks to misshape public perception at every given opportunity.

Behind the Scenes 

Bangkok police allegedly detained the wife of UK-based ex-Reuters editor Andrew Marshall briefly for questioning on July 22, before releasing her the same day. Despite the hysterical headlines that followed in the Western media, there were some essential details intentionally left out.

Marshall himself was fired from Reuters in 2011 after he and a colleague were caught mocking female victims of the horrific Fukushima disaster with racist and misogynist jokes. A 10 page appeal letter penned by Marshall (pdf) attempted to blame his actions on drug and alcohol abuse, as well as claims of deep mental illness. Since his dismissal from Reuters, he has served as a lobbyist for US-backed dictator Thaksin Shinawatra and his violent "red shirt" movement, serving as an ever-ready "expert" to provide spin for US, British, and Australian news networks eager to portray Shinawatra as a progressive  democrat.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Who is "Andrew Marshall?" And Why Does he Hate Thailand?

He's nobody, doing it for money and fame (and getting little of either). 

July 26, 2016 (ATN) - As children in elementary school, we remember the classmate who was not good at spelling or writing, nor at art or sports. He got no attention in class for anything based on his own merits, so he got attention instead for his many demerits. Making rude-sounds with his mouth, picking his nose, throwing objects at fellow classmates, or shouting comments in class was all he could do to gain any attention, even if it was negative attention.

Image: Marshall on US State Department-funded Prachatai TV. 
What happens to such children when they grow up? They become people like the middle-aged washed up ex-Reuters journalist, Andrew Marshall.

He was a senior editor at Reuters, until he and a colleague were caught in a Reuters online chat room mocking female victims of the horrific 2011 Fukushima disaster with racist and misogynist "jokes."

According to the subsequent 10 page appeal Marshall himself wrote in a shameful and vain attempt to avoid punishment, Marshall and his colleague - the disgraceful David Fox - held the following exchange:
At 2:47 a.m. I sent the following message in the internal Reuters chat room used by journalists around the world to coordinate on the Japan disaster story:

2:47:42 AM Asia_top_story_2 Andrew Marshall So how is the radiation situation mate? Has your hair been falling out?  
David‟s reply came a few minutes later:

2:50:16 AM Asia_top_story_2 David Fox Lets hope it affects all those cute jap girls who do have a strange tendency to grow their pubes ...    
The two, perverted middle-aged men found the exchange not only humorous, but Marshall vigorously attempted to defend it claiming it was merely "black humor" and that it was a "coping mechanism" used to deal with the Fukushima tragedy (despite Marshall not even being in Japan, and Fox being nowhere near harm's way).

Image: The 2011 Fukushima disaster was horrific. While most were moved to tears and charity, Andrew Marshall and David Fox decided to make jokes about Japanese women and their pubic hair. 

His 10 page appeal would make a sweeping defense of his actions. Instead of taking responsibly for his poor judgement like a grown adult, he subjected Reuters to 10 pages of rambling, shameful excuses such as:
It is a well-documented fact that people working in high-stress professions involving danger and/or exposure to traumatic scenes often use humour as an essential coping mechanism. This is sometimes known as “black humour” or “gallows humour”. You will hear it not only in newsrooms covering stories about war and disaster, but also among doctors, nurses, paramedics, ambulance drivers, firefighters, police, soldiers, and so on. It is a phenomenon extensively documented in academic literature. 

If you wish to do your own research, you will be able to very easily find many studies to support this point, but to save you time I will draw your attention to a few. One of the most recent studies directly relevant to this issue was published in January this year in the International Journal of Psychology. I have attached a copy of the article, Coping with traumatic stress in journalism: A critical ethnographic study by Marla Buchanan and Patrice Keats.
He also attempted to use his alcoholism and mental illness as an apparent excuse:
... at times I used alcohol to help me do this, which of course was a terrible idea and led to its own problems. 
Of course, there are no excuses for Marshall or Fox's behavior.

Thousands of journalists around the world cover war, tragedy, and human struggle without mocking the subjects of their coverage, and many make a point of respecting the dignity of the people they encounter and whose stories they attempt to tell to the rest of the world.

It appears that Reuters felt the same way, outright dismissing Fox, and Marshall being let go shortly after.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

America's "Human Rights" Racket in Action

July 6, 2016 (Tony Cartalucci - NEO) - Southeast Asia's Thailand has been racked by political conflict for now over a decade. During the rise and fall of US-backed political proxy Thaksin Shinawatra, there have been numerous protests and counter-protests, two military coups aimed at dislodging the despot and his deep political and paramilitary networks, and episodes of violence involving heavily armed terrorists deployed by Shinawatra in a bid to cling to power.

Image: Despite claims of being "independent," Amnesty International is both funded and directed by Western governments with a clear and present "revolving door" between the US State Department and the highest levels of Amnesty's organization. Pictured above is Susan Nossel at her Amnesty job, and her US State Department job. 

During each and every episode of violence, Shinawatra - a convicted criminal and accused mass murderer - and his armed proxies, received various levels of support from his Western backers.

First, they received a virtual media blackout across Western news networks. There is one infamous news broadcast by CNN's Dan Rivers in which he sets out to find Shinawatra's armed gunmen, known locally as the "men in black" in an attempt to prove stories of their existence was manufactured by the Thai military as a pretext to crackdown on what he repeatedly referred to as unarmed protesters.

At one point during the broadcast, almost comically, he is forced to take cover as a 40mm grenade strikes nearby, launched by the militants he insinuates didn't exist.

Similar charades have played out elsewhere around the world - particularly in Syria - where Western news services have played a direct role in concealing the existence, nature, and activities of terrorist groups operating on behalf of Western geopolitical objectives.

Second, the West's extensive network of alleged "human rights" advocacy groups have been engaged in a politically-motivated, biased campaign to portray Shinawatra and his supporters as victims of human rights abuses, and those attempting restore peace and stability to the country as "human rights violators."

Image: The Western media as well as Western "human rights" advocates have played a direct role in covering up for, spinning, or otherwise excusing actual human rights abuses, including terrorism and mass murder carried out by US proxies.

This became particularly transparent during Thailand's political crisis when between 2013-2014 hundreds of thousands of protesters took to the streets to protest and call for the departure of Thaksin Shinawatra's nepotist appointed sister, Yingluck Shinawatra, from office.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

US Ratchets Up Tension South China Sea

July 1, 2016 (Tony Cartalucci - NEO) - The United States, as part of its stated agenda of raising tensions in the South China Sea to encourage cooperation across Southeast Asia with the US in encircling and containing Beijing's regional and global rise, has included several high-profile naval and aviation incidents. However, there is a legal battle lurking just behind these more spectacular headlines, and once again the United Nations is being brought in and undermined in the process.

The Associated Press in their article, "Beijing to ignore South China Sea ruling," reported that:

China said on Saturday that it would ignore the decision of an international arbitration panel in a Philippine lawsuit against Beijing's sweeping territorial claims in the South China Sea. 

"To put it simply, the arbitration case actually has gone beyond the jurisdiction'' of a UN arbitration panel, said Rear Adm Guan Youfei, director of the foreign affairs office of China's National Defence Ministry. 

The Philippines has filed a case in the United Nations under the UN Convention on Law of the Sea, questioning China's territorial claim. An arbitration panel is expected to rule on the case soon. The Permanent Court of Arbitration ruled last year that it has jurisdiction over the case despite China's rejection.
While the Associated Press portrays the lawsuit as "Philippine," it is in reality headed not by the Philippines, but by a US legal team led by Paul S. Reichler of the Boston-based law firm Foley Hoag. in an article titled, "US lawyer for PH expert in maritime boundary cases," would reveal that not a single lawyer representing the Philippines is actually Filipino:
The lawyer leading the Philippine team in its fierce legal battle against China belongs to a select group of elite lawyers with extensive experience in representing sovereign states before the International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea (Itlos) in Hamburg, Germany, according to Chambers Global, which ranks law firms and lawyers across the world. 

Paul Reichler of the Boston-based law firm Foley Hoag has specialized for more than 25 years in land and maritime boundary disputes, the law firm said on its website. 

Reichler works with four other lawyers from the United States and the United Kingdom, in arguing the country’s case before the UN arbitral tribunal in The Hague, The Netherlands.  
Foley Hoag represents the most powerful corporate-financier interests on Earth, and is an integral part of expanding their power and influence across the globe. That Foley Hoag is involved in Washington's goal of encircling and containing one of the greatest threats to Washington and Wall Street's hegemony not only in Asia, but globally, is no surprise.

Image: The face of the "Philippines'" case against China in the South China Sea - US lawyer Paul Reichler. 
Part of America's agenda in the South  China Sea is to provoke and then portray tensions in the region as being solely between China and its neighbors, with the United States feigning the role as peacekeeper - thus justifying its continued military, political, and economic "primacy" over Asia.

Such an appraisal is hardly conjecture. The corporate-financier funded and directed policy think tank, the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) published a paper titled, "Revising U.S. Grand Strategy Toward China," penned by Robert Blackwill - a Bush-era administrator and lobbyist who has directly participated in Washington's attempts to maintain hegemony over Asia.