Save Yemen, Stop Raytheon Benefit Concert in Cambridge, Massachusetts

As Professor Griff always says, "hip hop is the infinite power healing of our people, it serves as a voice for the voiceless." Public Enemy and other groups like the Geto Boys taught us this through songs like "Fuck a War" and "Fight the Power."

During the era of the Vietnam War, popular music conveyed an antiwar sentiment. The band The Animals inspired a generation of young people to rally against the war through their song "We Gotta Get Out of This Place," leading thousands to march on Capitol Hill in 1969 for the Moratorium to End the War in Vietnam.

Although we are currently living through the longest war in US history, popular music has changed dramatically. Today, commercial music would never dare oppose wars like Afghanistan or Iraq. You never hear Miley Cyrus or Cardi B talk about weapons manufacturers’ skyrocketing profits from Saudi Arabia’s continued bombing campaign targeted at Yemeni civilians.

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Trump’s Plunder Doctrine Comes to Syria

Originally appeared at The American Conservative.

Part of the small residual U.S. force that the Trump administration is keeping in Syria serves no real military purpose:

“Al-Tanf has no obvious military purpose,” added Sam Heller of the International Crisis Group. “The real justification is, to my knowledge, denying the Syrian government and its Iranian ally access to the neighboring al-Tanf/al-Walid border crossing with Iraq. That blocks a key trade route that would better integrate Syria with its regional surroundings and help government-held Syria get on a more stable economic footing, which some in DC believe would diminish US leverage to force a political resolution to the war.”

The Tanf base represents a determination to retain a mostly symbolic military presence inside Syria if only to keep a small part of the country out of the Syrian government’s control. Keeping US forces there accomplishes nothing for US security, it is flagrantly illegal, and it puts these soldiers at risk for no good reason. Iran hawks desperately cling to this base because it is their last foothold in Syria from which to pursue their obsession with Iran.

In the latest twist, Trump has touted maintaining a military presence in Syria for the sake of “keeping the oil”:

President Trump said that he is planning to keep a small number of troops in northeast Syria to protect the oil fields there and suggested that an American company might help the Syrian Kurds develop the oil for export.

“I always said if you’re going in, keep the oil,” Mr. Trump said at a cabinet meeting Monday. “We’ll work something out with the Kurds so that they have some money, so that they have some cash flow. Maybe we’ll get one of our big oil companies to go in and do it properly.”

One of the only consistent features of Trump’s foreign policy views is his belief that other countries’ natural resources should be ours to seize and exploit as we please. Trump’s worldview is a bizarre mash-up of crude colonialism and racketeering in which allies are expected to pay protection money and open-ended military intervention is fine as long as it gets you paid. We have previously heard him express a desire to seize oil resources in Libya, Iraq, and Venezuela, and so it was inevitable that he would want to do the same thing with Syria.

Besides the obvious practical difficulties of controlling Syria’s oil fields with only a few hundred soldiers, there is the small matter of the sheer illegality of what Trump is proposing to do. Not only do our forces have no legal justification for being there and no authorization from Congress, but our government also has no right to sell this oil:

“Oil, like it or not, is owned by the Syrian state,” Mr. McGurk said Monday in an appearance at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, a Washington think tank. “Maybe there are new lawyers, but it was just illegal for an American company to go and seize and exploit these assets.”

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‘Truth Is Treason’ – The Torture of Julian Assange

WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange appeared before a UK judge to request more time to prepare his case against the US extradition request. Acting more like a Soviet triubunal, the judge went on to deny his every request. He is not allowed to prepare to fight his extradition. Even though Assange has served his time for “jumping bail” the British court ruled that he must remain in prison. His shocking mental and physical condition after being held for months in UK’s notorious Belmarsh prison only confirms the UN torture official’s assessment that he is being tortured by the US and UK governments. Why? For publishing the truth. The lesson to others is clear: challenge the global US military empire and you will be destroyed. On today’s Ron Paul Liberty Report:

Reprinted from The Ron Paul Institute for Peace & Prosperity.

This Weekend, October 26-27, Scott Horton Will Be at the Texas Book Festival in Austin

Scott Horton will be at the Texas Book Festival in Austin, on Lavaca Street between 11th and 12th. He will have copies of all the Libertarian Institute books, Fool’s Errand: Time to End the War in Afghanistan and The Great Ron Paul: The Scott Horton Show Interviews 2004–2019 by Scott, No Quarter: The Ravings of William Norman Grigg and Coming to Palestine by Sheldon Richman.

Back Again on the Road to Serfdom

Socialism has been tried on six continents and in numerous countries, but always with the same failed result. Despite geographic, economic, and other national differences, the experience of socialism follows a consistent trajectory, with its trademark features – poverty, shortages of resources, and repression – always on display.

Senator Rand Paul’s new book, The Case Against Socialism, is a timely response to the misguided enthusiasm for socialism that’s taken hold in the United States. From well-known members of Congress to college students, there is a growing fervor to go down the road that inevitably leads to serfdom. Senator Paul directly refutes the popular argument that socialism’s failures are simply the result of poor execution or improper implementation.

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Israel and Palestine: A Reexamination

Check out this great interview of Sheldon Richman about his new book Coming to Palestine on the Tom Woods show.

In this incredible volume of essays, collected over 30 years, Sheldon Richman exposes the true history of Israeli dispossession of the Palestinians. Coming to Palestine turns the typical story most Americans have been told about Israel’s founding on its head. It is a ringing endorsement of reason, freedom, peace, and toleration in Palestine and Israel.