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11 May, 2018

How the US stifles free speech: Reviving McCarthyism & nurturing Orwellian society

The new or expanded Global Engagement Center under the State Department seems to be morphing into what one might someday recognize as Orwell's "Ministry of Truth."

Recent events over past months have caused many to suspect the reliability of news and information provided to us, often by our own governments. Alternative news sources threaten to disrupt the message or narrative crafted by governments and large organizations. The US Global Engagement Center is mobilizing in response to counter alternative media, conflicting perspectives and foreign influence such as ‘Russian Propaganda.’

The rush to judgement, complete failure to follow international norms, and subsequent actions in response to both the alleged poisoning of Sergey and Yulia Skripal in Salisbury in the UK and the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria leaves many questions unanswered.

That narratives of government officials and mainstream media (MSM) are in lockstep despite the lack of any real evidence makes one suspicious of the ultimate objectives. Whatever these objectives may be, they certainly appear misplaced and bring increased international tension. Both these instances have the appearance of ‘false flag’ operations.

However, despite the lack of a thorough investigation, British Prime Minister May was quick to state the Skripals were poisoned with a nerve agent, Novichok, and claimed it was “highly likely” that it was the Russian government behind the attack. Both the UK and Russia are signatories of the international Chemical Weapons Convention. There are set procedures to be followed in the event of the suspected use of chemical weapons, such as Novichok, which include notification of the OPCW, cooperation of state parties and the instigation of a fact-finding investigation. These procedures were not followed and, in fact, Russia has yet to be included in the investigation or even provided samples.

There seems to be a veil of secrecy surrounding so many aspects of the entire incident. Despite the lack of evidence and the fragmentation of the initial storyline, the Skripal poisoning served certain interests by diverting attention away from the UK government and toward Russia. The subsequent mass expulsions of Russian diplomats from the UK, US and EU countries caused the further deterioration of international relations. Throughout this period, MSM toed the party line and lately it appears to have gone silent.

Closely following the Skripals’ poisoning, surprise-surprise, the famed White Helmets released a video of an alleged chemical weapons attack in Douma, Syria. Once again, despite no evidence and prior to the arrival of OPCW inspectors, the US, UK, and France launched airstrikes against Syria, targeting supposed chemical weapons facilities. There has yet to be any indication that a chemical weapons attack actually took place. Local citizens and doctors have testified recently that there was no chemical attack and that the incident was staged. Once again, MSM fails to cover the inconsistencies of the story which call in to serious question the actual occurrence of the attack.

Information from MSM sources, for the most part, is completely in compliance with information either being filtered or suppressed to support the desired narrative. The storylines, absent of credible facts or evidence, is reminiscent of the ‘Trust Me!’ approach regarding Weapons of Mass Destruction that led to ‘Operation Iraqi Liberation’ (renamed Operation Iraqi Freedom). The most recent instances add to the ongoing Russophobic hysteria engulfing the West under a very questionable pretext.

Those that are skeptical of the official narrative or act to provide a differing perspective are frequently ridiculed and demonized, often accused of being one of Putin’s useful-idiots. The list seems to be endless and spans from Russian scholar Professor Stephen Cohen and Australian journalist John Pilger to UK Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn or, at times, even the Republican Party.

This past year we have seen many alternative media sources essentially “blacklisted” by the secretive organization PropOrNot which published the names of more than 250 alternative news sources, accusing them of being Russian agents. The Washington Post promoted the story and, originally, ProporNot’s “List”. Only later did the Post add an introductory comment and delete the direct link to the List. The story was subsequently picked up and distributed by the Daily Beast and USA Today.

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