Daily Archives: May 12, 2019

May 12 Prayer in Difficult Times

Scripture Reading: Philippians 1:27–30

Key Verse: Philippians 1:29

For to you it has been granted on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake.

Many people mistakenly believe that faith in Jesus Christ can and will free their lives from the painful rigors of this fallen world. The apostle Paul took the opposite stance. Rather than denying the fact that Christians face even more difficulties than unbelievers, Paul boldly proclaimed a guarantee that believers will suffer in various ways. He exclaimed, “For to you it has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake” (Philippians 1:29 nasb). At first glance, this statement may seem outdated or misinformed. However, there are two things that we must remember about living as a Christian in today’s world.

First, it is important to realize that a Christ-centered faith is not the focus of modern society. Our self-centered world is suspicious of anyone who claims to “love” others unconditionally.

Second, we must remember that martyrdom is not a thing of the past. Many Christians around the world still are killed because of their faith. Our faith is not a shield from suffering.

However, most importantly, our faith does put us in contact with the One who is more than able to lead us through the difficulties. If you are experiencing a season of hardship, do not delay. Take your problems to the cross right now.

Lord, if I face hardship in my Christian life, let it be because of my faith in You and not because of bad behavior carried out in Your name.[1]


[1] Stanley, C. F. (2006). Pathways to his presence (p. 139). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Ye Who Think of Sin but Lightly… — The Aquila Report

How bad is our sin? Our sin is so bad that the only solution was the death of the Son of God. He who is perfect innocence, infinite love, immaculate beauty, pure and undefiled goodness….the one who cried out with tears in Gethsemane “If you are willing, take this cup away from me”. But the cup would not be taken away, because it is the only way that sinners can stand before God. 

 

Here is one of my favorite hymns, especially for Good Friday. It is something to think about on this day when we remember our Lord’s passion, death and burial.

Ye who think of sin but lightly
nor suppose the evil great
here may view its nature rightly,
here its guilt may estimate.
Mark the sacrifice appointed,
see who bears the awful load;
’tis the Word, the Lord’s Anointed,
Son of Man and Son of God. (Thomas Kelly)

Every scheme designed by humans to take care of sin and suffering will ultimately fail, because the problem is far deeper than we can imagine.

Sin is uglier, deadlier, fouler than we can possibly fathom – and it affects all of us.

It can’t be fixed by purity schemes, modesty balls, virginity pledges. It can’t be fixed with home-schooling, Christian schooling or public schooling. It can’t be solved by patriarchalism, feminism, complementarianism, or egalitarianism. It can’t be fixed by putting all men on the board, or by putting all women on the board, or by having an eclectic mix of everyone.

It can’t be solved by conservatives or liberals. It can’t be solved by moderates. It can’t be solved by good policy or by bad policy.

Read More

via Ye Who Think of Sin but Lightly… — The Aquila Report

May 12 When Facing Temptation

Scripture Reading: Luke 4:1–14

Key Verse: 2 Timothy 2:22

Flee also youthful lusts; but pursue righteousness, faith, love, peace with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.

It is a matter not of whether temptation will confront Christians but of when. As long as we live in a world where Satan and sin are at work, temptation will knock at the door of our hearts and minds. But with Christ indwelling us, we need not open the door. We can resist the temptation.

You can take preventive measures in many instances. If gossip is a problem, avoid gatherings where idle talk will run rampant. If immoral thoughts are a problem, stay away from questionable relationships or enticing activities.

Paul told Timothy to “flee from youthful lusts” (2 Tim. 2:22 nasb). If you are thrust into a tempting situation or if you battle a particular ungodly attraction, then you must deal firmly with temptation.

Realize who is behind your temptation. The devil is always ultimately the crafty perpetrator of temptation’s schemes. He seeks to wreak havoc in your life, veiling his tactics in the light of pleasure.

Then by an act of your will, think through the consequences of surrendering to temptation. What will be the outcome of this? Will it help your relationship with Christ? Who will be affected if you succumb? Contemplating the aftermath should alert you to the danger.

O Lord, help me to be vigilant to guard against temptation in my life. Give me the ability to see behind the immediate pleasures of sin to recognize Satan at work to wreak havoc in my life.[1]


[1] Stanley, C. F. (1999). On holy ground (p. 139). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Schiff: Biden Ukraine Scandal Should Be Off Limits | ZeroHedge News

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) said on Sunday that Joe Biden’s Ukraine corruption scandal should be off limits as the 2020 US election approaches, and that President Trump shouldn’t be allowed to investigate – or encourage Ukraine to investigate.

Biden has come under fire for a March, 2016 incident in Kiev in which he threatened to withhold $1 billion in US loan guarantees to Ukraine unless President Petro Poroshenko fired his head prosecutor, General Viktor Shokin, who was leading a wide-ranging corruption investigation into natural gas firm Burisma Holdings. As it so happens, Joe’s son Hunter Biden sat on Burisma’s board, and waas indirectly paid as much as $50,000 per month

‘I said, ‘You’re not getting the billion.’ I’m going to be leaving here in, I think it was about six hours. I looked at them and said: ‘I’m leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money,’” bragged Biden, recalling the conversation with Poroshenko.

Well, son of a bitch, he got fired,” Biden gloated.

Biden claims he didn’t know Hunter was on the Burisma board for an entire two years (Hunter reportedly joined in April 2014, two years before Biden’s threat), and that the effort to remove Shokin had nothing to do with the ”

“Shokin was fired because he attacked the reformers within the prosecutor general’s office,”

And this should be completely off limits to Trump, according to Adam Schiff 

Schiff told ‘This Week’ that Congress should take up legislation banning political campaigns from working with foreign governments in an effort to influence US elections, responding to news that Trump’s attorney, Rudy Giuliani, had planned to travel to Ukraine to encourage them to further investigate the Biden matter. Giuliani has since canceled the trip.

Going after his son is just a method of going after someone the president believes is his most formidable opponent,” Schiff told ABC’s ‘This Week.’ “So let the president go after him, but don’t seek the help of a foreign government in your election.”

In March, The Hill‘s John Solomon revealed that Ukraine’s Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko has launched an investigation into the head of the Ukrainian National Anti-Corruption Bureau for allegedly attempting to help Hillary Clinton defeat Donald Trump during the 2016 US election by releasing damaging information about a “black ledger” of illegal business dealings by former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort.

Meanwhile, President Trump told Politico on Friday that it would be “appropriate” for him to ask Attorney General William Barr about launching an investigation into Biden, or his son Hunter.

“Certainly it would be an appropriate thing to speak to him about, but I have not done that as of yet. … It could be a very big situation,” said Trump during a 15-minute phone interview Friday afternoon.

The New York Times earlier this month reported on Giuliani’s efforts to investigate and publicize the issue.

The president argued that the alleged conflict of interest, or appearance thereof, was not mushrooming into an all-out scandal because Biden is a Democrat.

“Because he’s a Democrat,” Trump said, the report had about “one-hundredth” the impact as it would have if he “were a Republican.” Politico

To recap; Biden didn’t know his son Hunter was on the board of a Ukrainian natural gas firm for a full two years, before threatening to withhold $1 billion in US loan guarantees if the President of Ukraine didn’t fire the guy investigating the Biden-linked Burisma, and Adam Schiff thinks that should be off limits to investigate, or for voters to consider, going into the 2020 election.

Source: Schiff: Biden Ukraine Scandal Should Be Off Limits

Senator Lindsey Graham Discusses 2016 “Spygate” With Maria Bartiromo…. — The Last Refuge

Boy howdy, Maria Bartiromo has the big picture of the 2015/2016 political weaponization of the intelligence apparatus exactly right.  In this interesting interview with Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham both Bartriromo and Graham discuss the scale and scope of the 2015/2016 effort to stop Trump.

Interestingly, in a shift of tone, Senator Graham outlines what this surveillance operation means when contrast against the structures of our constitutional government.

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Traditionally Lindsey Graham would bury any issue adverse to the institutions of the DC administrative state.  So there’s two possibilities here:  (A) Graham has fundamentally changed his outlook toward the dangers of the institutions within government; or, (B) Graham is doing a full ‘Castellanos‘ and embracing the controversy in order to control the risk to the administrative state with intent to protect it. [The latter is tradition]

The best way for DC to protect itself from the mob’s approach is to lead it themselves. The modern GOPe club has used this defense sending agents to the front of the grassroots anger in order to control the outcome. [Fast-n-Furious, IRS targeting, Benghazi, etc.]

♦When the common sense Tea Party movement formed in 2009 and 2010 it contained a monumentally frustrated grassroots electorate, and the scale of the movement caught the professional republican party off-guard.

♦When Donald Trump ran for the office of the presidency in 2015 and 2016 he essentially did the same thing; he disrupted the apparatus of the professional republican party.

The difference between those two examples is one was from the bottom up, and the second was from the top down. The commonality in the two forces resulted in the 2016 victory.

It took a few years for the heavily armored old guard of GOP to formulate a plan to retain their control. In the example of the Tea Party, the republican power structures moved in 2011 through 2014 to co-opt the vulgarian movement and impede their disruptive influence. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell was at the forefront of those power moves. {Go Deep} and {Go Deep} The basic issue for the GOP was retention of power.

McConnell and crew tamped down the fire. A few years pass and the issues that spurred the Tea Party movement remained unresolved. In 2015 Donald Trump taps in to that exact same Tea Party frustration toward the control authority within one-half of the DC UniParty; again, the professional republican apparatus was disrupted.

From the first moment candidate Trump announced his platform positions; from the very first poll *after* those platform positions were announced; Donald Trump was leading the republican field in every-single-poll from August of 2015 through today. Center stage throughout 2015 and 2016 and President of the United States as an outcome therein.

Yes, the “movement” rebranded and now MAGA wins the presidency.

However, think back to the 2015 instructions from republican insider Alex Castellanos as he described how the RNC could eliminate the disruptive influence of Donald Trump:

[…] “The best way to do it is how Brutus killed Caesar. Get real close, snuggle up, and shiv him in the ribs”… (link)

For the past two years it’s been a never-ending game of whac-a-mole as each of the establishment minded embeds surfaces at different times. Within the dynamic, the one commonality within the internecine conflict inside the Trump administration is the establishment GOP -vs- Trump MAGA.

It’s like having an independent MAGA administration that contains establishment terror cells. Each cell acts independently, but each cell also acts based on a common objective: retain the UniParty.

When you think about the actual structure of the National Republican Party -vs- the state party machines; it’s enough to make you wonder if the mid-term outcome and lack of structural fight was not part of this dynamic. After all, “their” party was taken over by a new MAGA base and a new pragmatic political leader, Donald Trump.

The same UniParty dynamic is visible in the way the FBI/DOJ and aggregate intelligence community were weaponized against Donald Trump – with Democrats and Republicans participating in the unlawful processes. Now, in the downstream consequence phase, we see a UniParty defense approach to block Trump from revealing what happened.

I’m not sure people fully completely understand this dynamic within “spygate”. It was not a targeting operation by democrats; republicans were just as complicit. The ongoing goal to eliminate candidate and president Trump is *not* partisan.

I hope Senator Lindsey Graham has encountered something that has fundamentally changed his core sense of identity.  I truly hope that is the case.  However, in the modern era of DC politics I cannot reference an example where the outlook of the individual, the guiding principles, changed inside a politician.

Check the audience at 01:25 (look fast):

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CTH has been in this modern-era conservative battle for a long time.  We have the GOPe battle scars, and a thousand points of betrayal to reference.

The genuine Tea-Party/MAGA movement has the same ideologies and objectives.  It is the ‘Monster Vote’.  It is also the most important political movement in our lifetime.  However, we will not promote ‘hope-porn’ and fantasy proclamations amid sudden appearances of political altruism.

We fight for DC change; we support our President, and we accept the battle-space as it exists; not as we wish it to be.

Proceed with cautious optimism…

via Senator Lindsey Graham Discusses 2016 “Spygate” With Maria Bartiromo…. — The Last Refuge

Lindsey Graham Working to Declassify ‘Sensitive Document’ That Proves FBI Knew Steele Dossier Lacked Credibility (VIDEO) — The Gateway Pundit

Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-SC) appeared on “Sunday Morning Futures” and told host Maria Bartiromo that he is working to declassify a ‘sensitive document’ that will prove the FBI knew the Steele dossier lacked credibility before it was used to obtain a spy warrant on Carter Page. 

Bartiromo said she is hearing a big portion of IG Horowitz’s impending report on FISA abuses will concentrate on the complicit media, who created stories based on what the FBI leaked about the dossier (to David Corn of Mother Jones and Michael Isikoff Yahoo! News) — the FBI then took the stories from those media reports and used it to obtain the FISA warrants.

In other words, circular reporting all created by our own corrupt FBI.

“There’s a document that’s classified that I’m gonna try to get unclassified that takes the dossier, all pages of it and it has verification to one side. There really is no verification other than media reports that were generated by reporters who received the dossier,” Lindsey Graham said.

Graham continued, “So, the bottom line is the dossier has never been independently confirmed. It was used to get a warrant. They knew the author of the dossier was on the Democratic Party payroll — he hated Trump — they got the warrant anyway. Most Americans should be very upset about that. I’m very upset about it. And we’re going to get to the bottom of it.”

WATCH:

via Lindsey Graham Working to Declassify ‘Sensitive Document’ That Proves FBI Knew Steele Dossier Lacked Credibility (VIDEO) — The Gateway Pundit

May 12 Approaching God

Scripture reading: Hebrews 10:19–22

Key verse: Hebrews 4:16

Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

Orel Hershiser was the confident catalyst who led the Los Angeles Dodgers to a World Series victory in 1988. He was so aggressive that his teammates nicknamed him “Bulldog.” Hershiser displayed the boldness and tenacity that should characterize the Christian’s relationship with God.

Your prayer life should not be weak and indecisive. You can approach God and present your needs, desires, and petitions with reverent assurance. You now have unhindered access into the Lord’s presence to praise and worship Him. Previously shrouded in fear and trembling, His presence is entered freely by the person whose sin is forgiven through Christ’s shed blood. You need not fear anymore.

You can be confident in approaching God to worship because Christ is now your sympathetic, understanding High Priest. You come to a throne of grace, which floods you with His tender mercy.

The Lord Jesus Christ is for you, not against you. He understands your frailties, your mood swings, your habits. He does not ever condemn you, for He was condemned in your stead (Rom. 8:1). Your confidence is also in the sure promises of God. He will do what He says in His Word. Praise Him for that today!

Lord, I praise You that I can come into Your presence to worship and commune with confidence, knowing You will do all You have promised.[1]


[1] Stanley, C. F. (2000). Into His presence (p. 139). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Dr. William Lane Craig interviewed on the Ben Shapiro Show Sunday Special — WINTERY KNIGHT

The episode of the Ben Shapiro show that we’ve all been waiting for is here! They discuss arguments for God’s existence in the first 25 minutes. The spend the first 26 minutes on arguments for God,and  the next 16 minutes on Christian distinctives. They spend a bunch more time responding to common arguments for atheism, and finally Ben asks Dr. Craig how he became a Christian.

Summary:

William Lane Craig, philosopher, theologian, and best selling author of numerous books including “On Guard: Defending Your Faith With Reason And Precision,” joins Ben to discuss the hard sciences vs. philosophy, the cosmological and ontological arguments, Jesus, slavery, gay marriage, and much more.

Video:

The MP3 file is here.

Topics:

  • Why are we seeing such a decline in religious belief in America?
  • Why are mainline denominations in Christianity and Judaism emptying out?
  • What was the driver behind the move away from religion starting in the 1960s?
  • Why is their a gap in the university and in the broader culture between reason and religious belief?
  • What is the strongest argument for God’s existence?
  • What is the most compelling argument for God’s existence for this culture?
  • Respond to Richard Dawkins’ challenge that God needs a cause.
  • Why does the universe have to have a cause?
  • Does Darwinian evolution provide grounds for our awareness of objective moral values and duties?
  • What is the strongest objection to the cosmological argument?
  • What is the strongest objection to the moral argument?
  • What about the objection that the existence of the universe is just a “brute fact” and doesn’t need an explanation for it’s existence?
  • What about David Hume’s objection to the law of causality?
  • What about objections to the cause of the universe from apparently uncaused events in quantum mechanics?
  • What is the ontological argument, and why is it frequently dismissed?
  • How do we get from an unmoved mover to a moral God?
  • Which arguments show that God is a mind?
  • How do you show that God is present and active in time now?
  • How do you move from God as Creator, Designer and moral lawgiver to a God who has revealed himself to human beings?
  • Who does Jesus claim to be in the gospels, and what is the evidence that his claims were correct?
  • From the Jewish perspective, this narrative has some  problems. First, merely declaring yourself as the Messiah is not seen as a punishable offense.
  • Second, the real problem is that Jesus vision of himself as the Messiah is completely different than how Jews have understood the Messiah. The Messiah in Judaism has always been a political figure who is destined to restore the Kingdom of Israel, bringing more Jews back to Israel, etc.  Claiming to be God, though would be blasphemy and a punishable offense.
  • Why is resurrection proof of divinity? Wasn’t Lazarus also raised from the dead?
  • The gospels were written decades after the events they claim to describe. Should we still see them as reliable enough to infer that the resurrection really happened?
  • Couldn’t legends have been introduced in the gap between the events and the time that the events were recorded?
  • Is it enough for us to have a Creator God, or is there a reason for God to reveal himself to us?
  • Tell us about your experience debating atheist scholars on university campuses.
  • Has any an atheist ever caused you to doubt your arguments?
  • The problem of human evil is easy to respond to, but how do you respond to the problem of natural evil, i.e. – suffering from events in the natural world, such as birth defects or natural disasters.
  • Atheists like to bring up specific disagreements they have with the Bible, e.g. – same-sex marriage, abortion, slavery, genocide. How would you respond to those?
  • Regarding slavery in the Bible, isn’t it the case that people sometimes do things that are not prescribed by God, and the Bible merely records that?
  • How would you respond then to people who push for same-sex marriage by arguing that this is a case where God wanted same-sex marriage, but couldn’t press for it because the people were not capable at that time and in that culture?
  • When discussing specific issues of morality, do you try to argue from a natural law perspective or from the morality in the Bible?
  • How would you respond to someone like Jordan Peterson who approaches religion teachings pragmatically, focusing on behaviors rather than the rational grounding of those behaviors?
  • How do you speak to young people about God without them losing interest?
  • How did you become a Christian?
  • As the influence of Judeo-Christian religion recedes, what do you see filling the void, and how do you see that affecting Western civilization going forward?

via Dr. William Lane Craig interviewed on the Ben Shapiro Show Sunday Special — WINTERY KNIGHT

Why Mother’s Day Founder Anna Jarvis Later Fought to Have the Holiday Abolished | MF

Years after she founded Mother’s Day, Anna Jarvis was dining at the Tea Room at Wanamaker’s department store in Philadelphia. She saw they were offering a “Mother’s Day Salad.” She ordered the salad and when it was served, she stood up, dumped it on the floor, left the money to pay for it, and walked out in a huff. Jarvis had lost control of the holiday she helped create, and she was crushed by her belief that commercialism was destroying Mother’s Day.

During the Civil War, Anna’s mother, Ann Jarvis, cared for the wounded on both sides of the conflict. She also tried to orchestrate peace between Union and Confederate moms by forming a Mother’s Friendship Day. When the elder Jarvis passed away in 1905, her daughter was devastated. She would read the sympathy cards and letters over and over, taking the time to underline all the words that praised and complimented her mother. Jarvis found an outlet to memorialize her mother by working to promote a day that would honor all mothers.

On May 10, 1908, Mother’s Day events were held at the church where Ann Jarvis taught Sunday School in Grafton, West Virginia, and at the Wanamaker’s department store auditorium in Philadelphia. Anna did not attend the event in Grafton, but she sent 500 white carnations—her mother’s favorite flower. The carnations were to be worn by sons and daughters in honor of their own mothers, and to represent the purity of a mother’s love.

Spreading the Word

Mother’s Day quickly caught on because of Anna Jarvis’s zealous letter-writing and promotional campaigns across the country and the world. She was assisted by well-heeled backers like John Wanamaker and H.J. Heinz, and she soon devoted herself full-time to the promotion of Mother’s Day.

In 1909 several senators mocked the very idea of a Mother’s Day holiday. Senator Henry Moore Teller (D-CO) scorned the resolution as “puerile,” “absolutely absurd,” and “trifling.” He announced, “Every day with me is a mother’s day.” Senator Jacob Gallinger (R-NH) judged the very idea of Mother’s Day to be an insult, as though his memory of his late mother “could only be kept green by some outward demonstration on Sunday, May 10.”

The backlash didn’t deter Jarvis. She enlisted the help of organizations like the World’s Sunday School Association, and the holiday sailed through Congress with little opposition in 1914.

The floral industry wisely supported Jarvis’s Mother’s Day movement. She accepted their donations and spoke at their conventions. With each subsequent Mother’s Day, the wearing of carnations became a must-have item. Florists across the country quickly sold out of white carnations around Mother’s Day; newspapers reported stories of carnation hoarding and profiteering. The floral industry later came up with an idea to diversify sales by promoting the practice of wearing red or bright flowers in honor of living mothers, and white flowers for deceased moms.

“Sentiment, Not Profit”

Jarvis soon soured on the commercial interests associated with the day. She wanted Mother’s Day “to be a day of sentiment, not profit.” Beginning around 1920, she urged people to stop buying flowers and other gifts for their mothers, and she turned against her former commercial supporters. She referred to the florists, greeting card manufacturers and the confectionery industry as “charlatans, bandits, pirates, racketeers, kidnappers, and termites that would undermine with their greed one of the finest, noblest, and truest movements and celebrations.”

In response to the floral industry, she had thousands of celluloid buttons made featuring the white carnation, which she sent free of charge to women’s, school, and church groups. She attempted to stop the floral industry by threatening to file lawsuits and by applying to trademark the carnation together with the words “Mother’s Day” (though she was denied the trademark). In response to her legal threats, the Florist Telegraph Delivery (FTD) association offered her a commission on the sales of Mother’s Day carnations, but this only further enraged her.

Jarvis’s attempts to stop the florists’ promotion of Mother’s Day with carnations continued. In 1934, the United States Postal Service issued a stamp honoring Mother’s Day. They used a painting colloquially known as Whistler’s Mother for the image, by artist James Whistler. Jarvis was livid after she saw the resulting stamp because she believed the addition of the vase of carnations was an advertisement for the floral industry.

Jarvis’s ideal observance of Mother’s Day would be a visit home or writing a long letter to your mother. She couldn’t stand those who sold and used greeting cards: “A maudlin, insincere printed card or ready-made telegram means nothing except that you’re too lazy to write to the woman who has done more for you than anyone else in the world.”

She added: “Any mother would rather have a line of the worst scribble from her son or daughter than any fancy greeting card.”

Going Rogue

Jarvis fought against charities that used Mother’s Day for fundraising. She was dragged screaming out of a meeting of the American War Mothers by police and arrested for disturbing the peace in her attempts to stop the sale of carnations. She even wrote screeds against Eleanor Roosevelt for using Mother’s Day to raise money (for charities that worked to combat high maternal and infant mortality rates, the very type of work Jarvis’s mother did during her lifetime).

In one of her last appearances in public, Jarvis was seen going door-to-door in Philadelphia, asking for signatures on a petition to rescind Mother’s Day. In her twilight years, she became a recluse and a hoarder.

Jarvis spent her last days deeply in debt and living in the Marshall Square Sanitarium, a now-closed mental asylum in West Chester, Pennsylvania. She died on November 24, 1948. Jarvis was never told that her bill for her time at the asylum was partly paid for by a group of grateful florists.

This story originally appeared in 2012.

Source: Why Mother’s Day Founder Anna Jarvis Later Fought to Have the Holiday Abolished

In 1871 America Fell in Love with Russia – The Amazing Story of the Tsar’s Son’s 3 Month Triumphal Tour of the USA | Russia Insider

An extraordinary article, with 27 illustrations, many of them taken from publications of the time.

Suzanne Massie is a 50 year phenomenon in the field of US-Russia relations. A brilliant and passionate writer, she is author of some of the greatest classics about Russia. She became a close friend of Ron and Nancy Reagan in the course of advising them about Russian culture and psychology. Her life story, and how it became intertwined with Russia reads like a best-selling novel. See RI’s profile here. A resident of Maine, she keeps an apartment in St. Petersburg. Raised Episcopalian she converted to Russian Orthodoxy. She is an outspoken critic of how dishonest the media is about Russia and is brilliant in explaining to Americans why Russian culture is one of the most exciting phenomenona ever. Archive of Massie’s articles on RI.


This remarkable article (a small book really) was written in 1983 by the acclaimed historian Suzanne Massie, author of one of the seminal books on Russia, ‘Land of the Firebird‘. She is the former wife of the popular Russia historian Robert Massie, and is herself the author of other important works about Russia. She was a close advisor to Ronald Reagan during his historic negotiations with Gorbachev. Massie, now 86, was recently in Moscow, where she was feted by Russian TV. RI reported on that last year. She claims she is the only woman to have been kissed by both Ronald Reagan and Vladimir Putin.

The ‘amazing’ aspect of Grand Duke Alexis’ tour, was how popular Russia was with the American people. It was possible because it was an age before the relentless newspaper campaign to slander and demean Russia and the Tsars, which really got started towards the end of the 19th century, when Jewish financial interests began to dominate American newspapers. It has been going non-stop ever since, except for a brief period after the Russian revolution when these same media moguls were enamored of Lenin’s USSR.

The Grand Duke visited 34 American cities, including New York, Philadelphia, West Point, Bridgeport CT, Springfield MA, Boston, Ottawa, Toronto, Niagara Falls, Buffalo, Cleveland, Detroit, Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Louis, Omaha, North Platte Nebraska, Denver, Cheyenne, Kit Carson, Louisville, Memphis, New Orleans, and Pensacola.

The writing in this article is excellent, and a delight to read, and the illustrations are no less fascinating. Some may find it hard to believe that what Massie recounts here is accurate, how America was crazy about Russia, but the wealth of illustrations from the newspapers of the time (there are many more than the 18 shown here), makes it clear that it was a national mania.

In addition to this historical article, Massie has developed a treatment of the subject for a musical for film and stage. The story features secret love, the romantic Wild West, Indian chiefs, the most colorful personalities of the time, and the Romanovs. Sounds like a recipe for a blockbuster to us. Amazon Originals, give Massie a call.

A thoroughly enjoyable read.

Read more: In 1871 America Fell in Love with Russia – The Amazing Story of the Tsar’s Son’s 3 Month Triumphal Tour of the USA

Judgment Day Looms For John Brennan as Department of Justice Releases Internal Review | Russia Insider

Sometime in the next 4 weeks, the Justice Department’s inspector general will release an internal review that will reveal the origins of the Trump-Russia investigation. Among other matters, the IG’s report is expected to determine “whether there was sufficient justification under existing guidelines for the FBI to have started an investigation in the first place.” Critics of the Trump-collusion probe believe that there was never probable cause that a crime had been committed, therefore, there was no legal basis for launching the investigation.

The findings of the Mueller report– that there was no cooperation or collusion between the Kremlin and the Trump campaign– seem to underscore this broader point and suggest that the fictitious Trump-Russia connection was merely a pretext for spying on the campaign of a Beltway outsider whose political views clashed with those of the foreign policy establishment.

In any event, the upcoming release of the Horowitz report will formally end the the first phase of the long-running Russiagate scandal and mark the beginning of Phase 2, in which high-profile officials from the previous administration face criminal prosecution for their role in what looks to be a botched attempt at a coup d’etat.

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Here’s a brief summary from political analyst, Larry C. Johnson, who previously worked at the CIA and U.S. State Department:

The evidence is plain–there was a broad, coordinated effort by the Obama Administration, with the help of foreign governments, to target Donald Trump and paint him as a stooge of Russia. The Mueller Report provides irrefutable evidence that the so-called Russian collusion case against Donald Trump was a deliberate fabrication by intelligence and law enforcement organizations in the US and UK and organizations aligned with the Clinton Campaign.” (“How US and Foreign Intel Agencies Interfered in a US Election”, Larry C. Johnson, Consortium News)

Bingo. Attorney General William Barr has already stated his belief that spying on the Trump campaign “did occur” and that, in his mind, it is “a big deal”. He also reiterated his commitment to thoroughly investigate the matter in order to find out whether the spying was adequately “predicated”, that is, whether the FBI followed the required protocols for such spying, or not. Barr already knows the answer to this question as he is fully aware of the fact that the FBI used information that they knew was false to obtain warrants to spy on the Trump campaign. Having no hard evidence of cooperation with the Kremlin, senior-level FBI officials and their counterparts at the Obama Justice Department used parts of an “opposition research” document (The Trump Dossier) that they knew was unreliable to procure warrants that allowed them to treat a presidential campaign the same way the intelligence agencies treat foreign enemies; using electronic surveillance, wiretapping, confidential informants and “honey trap” schemes designed to gather embarrassing or incriminating information on their target. Barr knows all of this already which is why the Democrats are doing everything in their power to discredit him and have him removed from office.

His determination to “get to the bottom of this” is not just a threat to the FBI, it’s a threat to multiple agencies that may have had a hand in this expansive domestic espionage operation including the CIA, the NSA, the DOJ, the State Department and, perhaps, even the Obama White House. No one knows yet how far up the political food-chain the skulduggery actually goes, but Barr appears to be serious about finding out.

Here’s Barr again:

“Many people seem to assume that the only intelligence collection that occurred was a single confidential informant….I would like to find out whether that is in fact true. It strikes me as a fairly anemic effort if that was the counterintelligence effort designed to stop the threat as it’s being represented.”

In other words, Barr knows that the Trump campaign was riddled with spies and he is going to do his damnedest to find out what happened. He also knows that the FISA warrants were improperly obtained using the shabby disinformation from an opposition research “hit piece” (The Steele Dossier) that was paid for by Hillary Clinton and the DNC, just like he knows that government agents had concocted a strategy for leaking classified information to the media to fuel the public hysteria. Barr knows most of what happened already. It’s just a matter of compiling the research in the proper format and delivering it in a way that helps to emphasize how trusted government agents abused their power by pursuing a vicious partisan plot to either destroy the president’s reputation or force him from office. Like Barr said, that’s a “big deal”.

The name that seems to feature larger than all others in the ongoing Trump-Russia saga, is James Comey, the former FBI Director who oversaw the spying operations that are now under investigation at the DOJ. But was Comey really the central figure in these felonious hi-jinks or was he a mere lieutenant following directives from someone more powerful than himself? While the preponderance of new evidence suggests that the FBI was deeply involved, it does not answer this crucial question. For example, just this week, a report by veteran journalist John Solomon, showed that former British spy Christopher Steele admitted to Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Kathleen Kavalec that his “Trump Dossier” was “political research”, implying that the contents couldn’t be trusted because they were shaped by Steele’s political bias. Kavalec passed along this information to the FBI which shrugged it off and then, just days later, used the dossier to obtain warrants to spy on members of the Trump campaign. Think about that for a minute. The FBI had “written proof …. that Steele had a political motive”, but went ahead and used the dossier to procure the warrants anyway. That’s what I’d call a premeditated felony.

But evidence of wrongdoing is not proof that Comey was the ringleader, he was just the hapless sad sack who was left holding the bag. The truth is, Comey was just a reluctant follower. The real architect of the Trump-Russia treachery was the boss-man at the nation’s premier intelligence agency, the CIA. That’s where the headwaters of this shameful burlesque are located, in Langley. More on that in a minute, but first check out this excerpt from an article at The Hill which sums up Comey’s role fairly well:

(There) “will be an examination of whether Comey was unduly influenced by political agendas emanating from the previous White House and its director of national intelligence, CIA director and attorney general. This, above all, is what’s causing the 360-degree head spin.

”There are early indicators that troubling behaviors may have occurred in all three scenarios. Barr will want to zero in on a particular area of concern: the use by the FBI of confidential human sources, whether its own or those offered up by the then-CIA director. …

In addition, the cast of characters leveraged by the FBI against the Trump campaign all appear to have their genesis as CIA sources (“assets,” in agency vernacular) shared at times with the FBI. From Stefan Halper and possibly Joseph Mifsud, to Christopher Steele, to Carter Page himself, and now a mysterious “government investigator” posing as Halper’s assistant and cited in The New York Times article, legitimate questions arise as to whether Comey was manipulated into furthering a CIA political operation more than an FBI counterintelligence case.” (“James Comey is in trouble and he knows it”, The Hill)

Why is the Inspector General so curious as to whether Comey “was unduly influenced by political agendas emanating from the previous White House and its director of national intelligence, CIA director? And why did Comey draw from “a cast of characters “…. that “all appear to have their genesis as CIA sources”??

Could it be that Comey was just an unwitting pawn in a domestic regime change operation launched by former CIA Director John Brennan, the one public figure who has expressed greater personal animus towards Trump than all the others combined? Could Trump’s promise to normalize relations with Russia have intensified Brennan’s visceral hatred of him given the fact that Russia had frustrated Brennan’s strategic plans in Ukraine and Syria? Keep in mind, the CIA had been arming, training and providing logistical support to the Sunni militants who were trying to overthrow Syrian president Bashar al Assad. Putin’s intervention crushed the jihadist militias delivering a humiliating defeat to Generalissimo Brennan who, soon after, left office in disgrace. Isn’t this at least part of the reason why Brennan hates Trump?

Regular readers of this column know that I have always thought that Brennan was the central figure in the Trump-Russia charade. It was Brennan who first referred the case to Comey, just as it was Brennan who “hand-picked” the analysts who stitched together the dodgy Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA) (which said that “Putin and the Russian government aspired to help…Trump’s election chances.”) It was also Brennan who persuaded Harry Reid to petition Comey to open an investigation in the first place. Brennan was chief instigator of the Trump-Russia fiasco, the omniscient puppet-master who persuaded Clapper and Comey to do his bidding while still-unidentified agents strategically leaked stories to the media to inflame passions and sow social unrest. At every turn, Brennan was there guiding the perfidious project along. According to journalist Philip Giraldi, the CIA may have even assisted in the obtaining of FISA warrants on Trump campaign aids as this excerpt from an article at The Unz Review indicates:

“Brennan was the key to the operation because the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court refused to approve several requests by the FBI to initiate taps on Trump associates and Trump Tower as there was no probable cause to do so but the British and other European intelligence services were legally able to intercept communications linked to American sources. Brennan was able to use his connections with those foreign intelligence agencies, primarily the British GCHQ, to make it look like the concerns about Trump were coming from friendly and allied countries and therefore had to be responded to as part of routine intelligence sharing. As a result, Paul Manafort, Carter Page, Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner and Gen. Michael Flynn were all wiretapped. And likely there were others. This all happened during the primaries and after Trump became the GOP nominee.” (“The Conspiracy Against Trump”, Philip Giraldi)

Can you see how important this is? The FBI was having trouble getting warrants to spy on the Trump campaign, so Brennan helped them out by persuading his foreign intelligence allies (the British and other European intelligence services) to come up with bogus “intercepted communications linked to American sources,” which helped to secure the FISA warrants. We have no idea of what these foreign agents heard on these alleged intercepted communications, all we know is that they were effectively used to achieve Brennan’s ultimate objective, which was to acquire the means of taking down Trump via a relentless and expansive surveillance campaign.

According to a report in The Guardian (where the story first appeared.):

“GCHQ (British Government Communications Headquarters) played an early, prominent role in kickstarting the FBI’s Trump-Russia investigation, which began in late July 2016. One source called the British eavesdropping agency the “principal whistleblower”. (“British spies were first to spot Trump team’s links with Russia “, The Guardian)

Okay, so Brennan twisted a few arms and got his foreign Intel buddies to make uncorroborated claims that got the investigative ball rolling, but then what? If there was any meat to Brennan’s foreign intel, then Mueller would have dug it up and used it in his report, right? But he didn’t. Why?

Because there was nothing there, the whole thing was a sham from the get go. Brennan probably “sexed up” the intelligence so it would sound like something it really wasn’t. (Think: WMD) Again, if there was even a scintilla of hard evidence that Trump’s campaign assistants were in bed with Russia, Mueller would have shrieked it from every mountaintop across America. But he didn’t, because there wasn’t any. There was no cooperation, no conspiracy and no collusion. Trump was falsely accused. End of story.

Here’s more from the same article:

“The Guardian has been told the FBI and the CIA were slow to appreciate the extensive nature of contacts between Trump’s team and Moscow ahead of the US election.” (Guardian)

“The extensive nature of contacts between Trump’s team and Moscow”???

Really? This is precisely the type of hyperventilating journalism that fueled the absurd conspiracy theory that the president of the United States was a Russian agent. It’s hard to believe that we’re even discussing the matter at this point.

There was an interesting aside in John Solomon’s article that suggests that he might be thinking along the same lines. He says: “One legal justification cited for redacting the Oct. 13, 2016, email is the National Security Act of 1947, which can be used to shield communications involving the CIA or the White House National Security Council.”

Why would Solomon draw attention to “to shielding communications involving the CIA or the White House”, after all, the bulk of his article focused on the State Department and the FBI? Is he suggesting that the CIA and Obama White House may have been involved in these spying shenanigans, is that why Kavalec’s damning notes (which stated that Steele’s dossier could not be trusted.) have been retroactively classified?

Take a look at this email from the FBI’s chief investigator in the Russia collusion probe, Peter Strzok, to his fellow agents in April 2017.

“I’m beginning to think the agency (CIA) got info a lot earlier than we thought and hasn’t shared it completely with us. Might explain all those weird/seemingly incorrect leads all these media folks have. Would also highlight agency as source of some leaks.” -Peter Strzok.

Ha! So even the FBI’s chief investigator was in the dark about the CIA’s shadowy machinations behind the scenes. Clearly, Brennan wanted to prevent the other junta leaders from fully knowing what he was up to.

All of this is bound to come out in the inspector general’s report sometime in the next month or so. Both Attorney General William Barr and IG Horowitz appear to be fully committed to revealing the criminal leaks, the illegal electronic surveillance, the improperly obtained FISA warrants, and the multiple confidential human sources (spies) that were placed in the Trump campaign. They are going to face withering criticism for their efforts, but they are resolutely moving forward all the same. Bravo, for that.

Bottom lineThe agents and officials who conducted this seditious attack on the presidency never thought they’d be held accountable for their crimes. But they were wrong, and now their day of reckoning is fast approaching. The main players in this palace coup are about to be exposed, criminally charged and prosecuted. Some of them will probably wind up in jail.

“The wheels of justice turn slowly, but grind exceedingly fine.”

Source: Judgment Day Looms For John Brennan as Department of Justice Releases Internal Review

Pence Bemoans Americans ‘Shunned for Defending Bible’, Slams ‘Secular Left’ | Sputnik International

Describing the kind of perils they might find themselves facing due to their faith, Pence told students that Donald Trump will continue to defend freedom of religion.

During his recent speech at Liberty University, a private evangelical university located in Lynchburg, Virginia, US Vice President Mike Pence warned graduates that they should prepare to endure criticism from those he described as the “secular left”.

“Some of the loudest voices for tolerance today have little tolerance for traditional Christian beliefs. So as you go about your daily life, just be ready”, Pence said.

He also lamented that while “throughout most of American history, it’s been pretty easy to call yourself a Christian” and “it didn’t even occur to people that you might be shunned or ridiculed for defending the teachings of the Bible”, today students will asked to “bow down to the idols of the popular culture”.

Emilia Clarke as Daenerys Targaryen in a scene from Game of Thrones

© AP Photo / HBO, Keith Bernstein, File

Pence urged students to remain firm in their convictions and promised that President Donald Trump will ever remain a defender of freedom of religion.

“We will always stand up for the right of Americans to live, to learn, and to worship God according to the dictates of their conscience. As President Trump said at this very podium two years ago, on our watch, ‘No one is ever going to stop you from practicing your faith or from preaching what is in your heart.’ That’s a promise”, he said.

Having once reportedly described himself as “a Christian, a conservative and a Republican, in that order”, Mike Pence became an evangelical born-again Christian during his college years.

Source: Pence Bemoans Americans ‘Shunned for Defending Bible’, Slams ‘Secular Left’

Google ‘Top Stories’ dominated by ‘left leaning sources’ CNN, New York Times, Washington Post | Washington Times

A new study from the Computational Journalism Lab at Northwestern found that many of Google’s top hits for news searches came from just a handful of sources.

Researches Daniel Trielli and Nicholas Diakopoulos conducted their study by looking at the results of over 200 news related questions every day in November 2017. They found 6,303 individual links to articles in the Top Stories Box, and counted an “article article impression each time one of those links appears.”

Their data showed that 86% of Google’s Top Stories came from only 20 news sources. Just three dominated the coverage, with 23% of all impressions counted — CNN with 10.9%, the New York Times with 6.5% and the Washington Post with 5.6%.

Fox News, which was ranked fourth, only had 3%.

“As much as our results help better describe Google’s curation of news, what our study decidedly cannot say is why some sources dominate on Google,” Mr. Diakopoulos wrote. “We just don’t know unless Google is more transparent with the editorial design and goals of news curation in the Top Stories box. What we do know is that Google’s algorithmic curation of news in search converts to real and substantial amounts of user attention and traffic.”



Additionally, the research duo compared the list of sources to another study that measured the ideological affiliation of a news outlet by analyzing the political stances of those sharing content on Facebook.

From that, they found that 62% of the impressions were from sources considered left-leaning and only 11% from right-leaning outlets.

“A higher proportion of left-leaning sources appear in Top Stories,” Mr. Diakopoulos wrote, noting that it appears left-leaning sources actually produce more content.

Source: Google ‘Top Stories’ dominated by ‘left leaning sources’ CNN, New York Times, Washington Post

The Mueller Report Went Soft on the RussiaGate Hoaxers. Here Are Its Omissions | Russia Insider

https://russia-insider.com, Raúl Ilargi Meijer

Zero Hedge ran an article about omissions from the Mueller report and/or investigation. It’s instructive, but there is more.

First, some bits from that article:

Major Mueller Report Omissions Suggest Incompetence Or A Coverup

Robert Mueller’s 448-page “Investigation into Russian Interference in the 2016 Presidential Election” contains at least two major omissions which suggest that the special counsel and his entire team of world-class Democrat attorneys are either utterly incompetent, or purposefully concealing major crimes committed against the Trump campaign and the American people.

First, according to The Federalist’s Margot Cleveland (a former law clerk of nearly 25 years and instructor at the college of business at the University of Notre Dame) – the Mueller report fails to consider whether the dossier authored by former MI6 spy Christopher Steele was Russian disinformation, and Steele was not charged with lying to the FBI.

“The Steele dossier, which consisted of a series of memorandum authored by the former MI6 spy, detailed intel purportedly provided by a variety of Vladimir Putin-connected sources. For instance, Steele identified Source A as “a senior Russian Foreign Ministry figure” who “confided that the Kremlin had been feeding Trump and his team valuable intelligence on his opponents, including Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.”

Other supposed sources identified in the dossier included: Source B, identified as “a former top-level Russian intelligence officer still active inside the Kremlin”; Source C, a “Senior Russian Financial Officer”; and Source G, “a Senior Kremlin Official.” -The Federalist

As Cleveland posits: “Given Mueller’s conclusion that no one connected to the Trump campaign colluded with Russia to interfere with the election, one of those two scenarios must be true—either Russia fed Steele disinformation or Steele lied to the FBI about his Russian sources.”

Mueller identified only two principal ways Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election: “First, a Russian entity carried out a social media campaign that favored presidential candidate Donald J. Trump and disparaged presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Second, a Russian intelligence service conducted computer-intrusion operations against entities, employees, and volunteers working on the Clinton Campaign and then released stolen documents.”

Surely, a plot by Kremlin-connected individuals to feed a known FBI source—Steele had helped the FBI uncover an international soccer bribery scandal—false claims that the Trump campaign was colluding with Russia would qualify as a “principal way” in which Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election.

[..] the only lawmaker to even mention this possibility has been Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA), who raised the issue with Attorney General William Barr last week: “My question,” said Grassley, “Mueller spent over two years and 30 million dollars investigating Russia interference in the election. In order for a full accounting of Russia interference attempts, shouldn’t the special counsel have considered whether the Steele dossier was part of a Russian disinformation and interfere campaign?” [..] Barr said that he has assembled a DOJ team to examine Mueller’s investigation, findings, and whether the spying conducted by the FBI against the Trump campaign in 2016 was improper.

Mueller’s second major oversight – which we have touched on repeatedly – is the special counsel’s portrayal of Maltese professor Joseph Mifsud as a Russian agent – when available evidence suggests he may have been a Western agent.

Weeks after returning from Moscow, Mifsud – a self-described Clinton Foundation member – ‘seeded’ the rumor that Russia had ‘dirt’ on Hillary Clinton with Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos on April 26, 2016, according to the Mueller report.

As Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) noted on Fox News on Sunday, “how is it that we spend 30-plus-million dollars on this, as taxpayers and they can’t even tell us who Joseph Mifsud is?” “…this is important, because, in the Mueller dossier, they use a fake news story to describe Mifsud. In one of those stories, they cherry- pick it,” Nunes added.

[..] As conservative commentator and former US Secret Service agent Dan Bongino notes of Mifsud, “either we have a Russian asset who’s infiltrated the highest echelons of friendly Intelligence Services, or we have a friendly who was setting up George Papadopoulos.”

This poses questions about Mueller, Mifsud and Steele and many other people and organizations involved, but the central question remains unaddressed: did Russia truly meddle and interfere in the 2016 election?

We don’t know, we have only Mueller’s word for that, and he’s ostensibly based it on reports from US intelligence, which has very obvious reasons to smear Russia. That Mifsud is presented as a Russian agent, with all the doubts about that which we have seen presented, doesn’t help this point.

That Steele hadn’t visited Russia since 1993 when he complied his dossier is not helpful either. His information could have originated with “the Russians”, or with US intelligence, and he would never have been the wiser. That is, even IF he was a straight shooter. What are the odds of that?

And of course the strongest doubts about Russian meddling and interference, along with offers of evidence to underline and reinforce these doubts, have been offered by Julian Assange and the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS) group.

But as I’ve repeatedly said before, after Mueller had to let go of the “Russia collusion with the Trump campaign” accusation, he was free to let the “Russian meddling aided and abetted by Julian Assange” narrative stand, beacuse he didn’t have to provide proof for that, as long as he didn’t communicate with either the Russians (easy), the VIPS (whom he stonewalled) or Assange (who’s been completely silenced).

So we have -at least- 4 major omissions in the Mueller investigation and report:

1) the Mueller report failed to consider whether the dossier authored by former MI6 spy Christopher Steele was Russian disinformation (and Steele was not charged with lying to the FBI).

2) Mueller’s portrayal of Maltese professor Joseph Mifsud as a Russian agent – when available evidence suggests he may have been a Western agent.

3) Mueller declined to talk to the VIPS, who offered evidence that the DNC servers were not hacked but content was copied onto a disk at the server’s location

4) Mueller refused to hear Julian Assange, who offered evidence that it was not the Russians that had provided WikiLeaks with the emails.

Mueller was supposedly trying to find the truth about Trump’s ties to Russia/Putin, and he refused to see and hear evidence from two organizations, WikiLeaks and the VIPS, which he absolutely certainly knew could potentially have provided things he did not know. Why did he do that? There’s only one possible answer: he didn’t want to know.

Why not? Because he feared he would have had to abandon the “Russian meddling and interference” narrative as well. If, as both WikiLeaks and the VIPS insisted, the emails didn’t come from “the Russians”, all that would have been left is an opaque story about “Russians” buying $100,000 in Facebook ads. And that, too, is awfully shaky.

That’s an amount Jared Kushner acknowledged he spent every few hours on such ads during the – multi-billion-dollar – campaign. Moreover, many of these ads were allegedly posted AFTER the elections. And we don’t even know it was Russians who purchased the ads, that’s just another story coming from US intelligence.

It is not so hard, guys. “Omissions” or “oversight” is one way to put it, but there are others. Assange could have cleared himself of any claims of involvement in meddling and perhaps proven Guccifer 2.0 was not “Russian”. His discussions with the DOJ, preparations for which were in an advanced stage of development, were killed in 2017 by then-FBI head James Comey and Rep. Mark Warner.

Mueller never wanted the truth, he wanted to preserve a narrative. The VIPS, too, threatened that narrative by offering physical evidence that nobody hacked the emails. Mueller never reached out. Mueller, the former FBI chief, who must know who these men and women are. Here’s a list, in case you were wondering:

 

Louie Gohmert: ‘This Came Very Close to Being the First Successful Coup’ in U.S. History | Breitbart

Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) warned that America “came very close” to suffering its “first successful coup” via the Russian collusion hoax.

Source: Louie Gohmert: ‘This Came Very Close to Being the First Successful Coup’ in U.S. History

Major Mueller Report Omissions Suggest Incompetence Or A Coverup | ZeroHedge

Robert Mueller’s 448-page “Investigation into Russian Interference in the 2016 Presidential Election” contains at least two major omissions which suggest that the special counsel and his entire team of world-class Democrat attorneys are either utterly incompetent, or purposefully concealing major crimes committed against the Trump campaign and the American people.

First, according to The Federalist‘s Margot Cleveland (a former law clerk of nearly 25 years and instructor at the college of business at the University of Notre Dame) – the Mueller report fails to consider whether the dossier authored by former MI6 spy Christopher Steele was Russian disinformation, and Steele was not charged with lying to the FBI.

The Steele dossier, which consisted of a series of memorandum authored by the former MI6 spy, detailed intel purportedly provided by a variety of Vladimir Putin-connected sources. For instance, Steele identified Source A as “a senior Russian Foreign Ministry figure” who “confided that the Kremlin had been feeding Trump and his team valuable intelligence on his opponents, including Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.”

Other supposed sources identified in the dossier included: Source B, identified as “a former top-level Russian intelligence officer still active inside the Kremlin”; Source C, a “Senior Russian Financial Officer”; and Source G, “a Senior Kremlin Official.” –The Federalist

As Cleveland posits: “Given Mueller’s conclusion that no one connected to the Trump campaign colluded with Russia to interfere with the election, one of those two scenarios must be true—either Russia fed Steele disinformation or Steele lied to the FBI about his Russian sources.”

…Trump’s victory does not negate the reality that, assuming Steele truthfully relayed to the FBI and the media the intel his Russian sources provided, Russia interfered in the election by feeding Steele false intel about Trump.

Yet in the special counsel report, Mueller identified only two principal ways Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election: “First, a Russian entity carried out a social media campaign that favored presidential candidate Donald J. Trump and disparaged presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Second, a Russian intelligence service conducted computer-intrusion operations against entities, employees, and volunteers working on the Clinton Campaign and then released stolen documents.”

Surely, a plot by Kremlin-connected individuals to feed a known FBI source—Steele had helped the FBI uncover an international soccer bribery scandal—false claims that the Trump campaign was colluding with Russia would qualify as a “principal way” in which Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election. The Russia social media campaign to disparage Hillary Clinton wasn’t a patch on the plot the Kremlin launched to destroy Trump: It resulted not only in bad press, but also an investigation into the Trump campaign and the use of court-approved surveillance exposing campaign communiques.

Even though Mueller was authorized, as he put it in the special counsel report, to investigate “the Russian government’s efforts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election,” the report is silent of efforts to investigate Russia’s role in feeding Steele misinformation. –The Federalist

Meanwhile, the only lawmaker to even mention this possibility has been Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA), who raised the issue with Attorney General William Barr last week:

“My question,” said Grassley, “Mueller spent over two years and 30 million dollars investigating Russia interference in the election. In order for a full accounting of Russia interference attempts, shouldn’t the special counsel have considered whether the Steele dossier was part of a Russian disinformation and interfere campaign?

Barr replied that he had yet to “go through the full scope of [Mueller’s] investigation to determine whether he did address or look at all into those issues,” but that he would “try to assemble all the existing information out there about it, not only for the Hill investigations and the OIG, but also to see what the Special Counsel looked into. So I really couldn’t say what he looked into.”

Meanwhile, Barr said that he has assembled a DOJ team to examine Mueller’s investigation, findings, and whether the spying conducted by the FBI against the Trump campaign in 2016 was improper.

Mueller’s second major oversight – which we have touched on repeatedly – is the special counsel’s portrayal of Maltese professor Joseph Mifsud was a Russian agent – when available evidence suggests he may have been a Western agent.

Weeks after returning from Moscow, Mifsud – a self-described Clinton Foundation member – ‘seeded’ the rumor that Russia had ‘dirt’ on Hillary Clinton with Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos on April 26, 2016, according to the Mueller report.

As Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) noted on Fox News on Sunday, “how is it that we spend 30-plus-million dollars on this, as taxpayers and they can’t even tell us who Joseph Mifsud is?

“…this is important, because, in the Mueller dossier, they use a fake news story to describe Mifsud. In one of those stories, they cherry- pick it,” Nunes added.

BARTIROMO: Then he’s working for Trump. So how come somebody from Britain, Australia, Italy, they’re all reaching out to him? And, by the way, how come this London Center of International Law reached out to Papadopoulos on LinkedIn to go work there, after Ben Carson withdrew?

NUNES: And I think a better question is, is that — so, Papadopoulos claims that he was quitting this London Center.

So how many companies or agencies that you know of, when you say, hey, I’m quitting, and they say, hey, what about a free four-to-five-day vacation in Rome? We’re going to fly you there. We’re going to put you up for free. We’re going to give you food… And all you have to do is meet this guy Mifsud, right… We’re trying to get to the bottom of Mifsud. So, as we talked about it on the last segment, this guy originates the investigation. We know that the Mueller team wrote this Mueller dossier. They used a lot of these news stories that, in fact, sometimes were generated by leaks from the FBI.

Now, I don’t think the American people expect 20 DOJ lawyers and 40 FBI agents to write a 450-page report that’s built off of news stories that in many cases they generated.

Why I particularly have a problem with this is — with one of the stories is because they pick a news story, and then they cherry-pick from it. So they use it partly to describe where Mifsud worked, but then they fail to say in that same story that they have given support to by using it in the Mueller dossier, they cherry-pick it. -Via RealClearPolitics

As conservative commentator and former US Secret Service agent Dan Bongino notes of Mifsud, “either we have a Russian asset who’s infiltrated the highest echelons of friendly Intelligence Services, or we have a friendly who was setting up George Papadopoulos.”

.@dbongino on why Mifsud is key in Spygate:

“So either we have a Russian asset who’s infiltrated the highest echelons of friendly Intelligence Services, or we have a friendly who was setting up @GeorgePapa19 – That’s the real scandal. This was not spying, this was entrapment.” pic.twitter.com/wGnV8HHur1

— M3thods (@M2Madness) May 4, 2019

Perhaps Mueller’s reportedly scheduled testimony next week will shed more light on why he failed to question the possible role of Russian disinformation with the Steele Dossier, and why he didn’t flush out who Joseph Mifsud really is.

Other omissions, meanwhile, are on the table as well…

Robert Mueller never inquired about Peter Strzok and Lisa Page’s “insurance policy” when he fired Strzok. When Mueller testifies in front of the House Judiciary Committee, I’m going to ask why he never even asked about what evidence might have been polluted by Strzok and Page. pic.twitter.com/6B7KWtjOJT

— Rep. Matt Gaetz (@RepMattGaetz) May 6, 2019

Source: Major Mueller Report Omissions Suggest Incompetence Or A Coverup

We are living in perilous times,”The LGBTQ” are out to destroy anyone/any organization… | HNewsWire

https://www.hnewswire.com, By StevieRay Hansen

A “scoffer” in this context is one who mocks Christ, ridicules the things of God, and opposes the gospel. Both Peter and Jude were writing warnings against false teachers who were intent on leading others astray. The word scoffer refers to one who denies the truths of Scripture and entices others to go along with his error.

The word unbeliever was understood to represent everything opposed to Christian faith and godliness. In 2 Corinthians 6:14–15, Paul writes, “Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness? Or what harmony has Christ with Belial, or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever?” The understanding was that those who had come to faith in Christ were in the process of being transformed into the image of Jesus (Romans 8:29). The further along they were in this process, the fewer similarities they had with unbelievers.

 

May 12, 2019 Afternoon Verse Of The Day

3 When the people promise to obey and observe all that the Lord has said, they do not exchange the blessings of promise for the law. The keeping of the “Lord’s words and laws” is to be based on the prior provision of sacrificial blood. The blood cleanses men and women so that “doing” and “obeying” become possible for them. This is not “doing” to merit favor or salvation (see comment on 19:8).[1]


Ver. 3.—And Moses came. Moses descended from the mount, and reported to the people all the words of the Lord—all the legislation contained in the last three chapters and a half (ch. 20:19, to ch. 23:33), not perhaps in extenso, but as to its main provisions. And all the people answered with one voice, promising obedience. In times of excitement, a common impulse constantly animates an entire multitude, and an exaltation of feeling leads them to make pledges, which they are very unwilling to stand by afterwards. Hence Moses requires something more than a verbal assent.[2]


24:3 words … judgments: This is one of the places where we discover one of the ways that the word of the Lord came to Moses (Ex. 13:1).[3]


24:3 This passage concerning the ratification of the Mosaic covenant is one of the key passages of the Book of Exodus. The nation of Israel was entering a formal covenant relationship with Yahweh.[4]


24:3 All the commands may refer specifically to the Ten Commandments (20:1–17), and the ordinances to additional commands given in 20:22–23:33.[5]


[1] Kaiser, W. C., Jr. (2008). Exodus. In T. Longman III & D. E. Garland (Eds.), The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Genesis–Leviticus (Revised Edition) (Vol. 1, p. 507). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

[2] Spence-Jones, H. D. M. (Ed.). (1909). Exodus (Vol. 2, pp. 224–225). London; New York: Funk & Wagnalls Company.

[3] Radmacher, E. D., Allen, R. B., & House, H. W. (1999). Nelson’s new illustrated Bible commentary (p. 129). Nashville: T. Nelson Publishers.

[4] Criswell, W. A., Patterson, P., Clendenen, E. R., Akin, D. L., Chamberlin, M., Patterson, D. K., & Pogue, J. (Eds.). (1991). Believer’s Study Bible (electronic ed., Ex 24:3). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[5] Coover-Cox, D. G. (2017). Exodus. In E. A. Blum & T. Wax (Eds.), CSB Study Bible: Notes (p. 128). Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers.

Islam is violent because of founder, Muslim expert says | WND

Since 9/11, when Islamic terrorists killed nearly 3,000 people, Muslim advocacy groups in the United States have had considerable success promoting the notion that Islam is a religion of peace.

Al-Qaida, ISIS and other such violent groups have nothing to do with Islam, goes the narrative.

 

But Hamed Abdel-Samad, an Egyptian-born political scientist and author who emigrated to Germany, insists otherwise, arguing one need only examine the sacred texts and the founder of Islam.

“ISIS is doing nothing different than Muhammad and his successors, at the time,” Abdel-Samad said in a talk show on the Austrian ServusTV channel. “They brought an ideology into the world, using weapons and the subjugation of peoples.

He said that as an Egyptian, he “would never have been born a Muslim if Muhammad’s successors had not behaved like ISIS does.”

“The same holds true for Morocco, Iran, and, in fact, anywhere Islam spread. The entire history of Islam is a history of conquest,” he said.

His comments were translated and reported by the Middle East Media Research Institute.

He addressed the contention that “Islamophobia” is the cause of terrorism.

“Many Muslims from every Muslim country joined ISIS,” he pointed out. “The first group came from Saudi Arabia. I don’t think Islamophobia exists there. The second group came from the middle class of Tunisia. There is not much Islamophobia there either.

“There is not a single Islamic country that is devoid of terrorism and of increasing radicalization,” he said. “Saying that the main and only reason (for terrorism), in your view, is that these young people face Islamophobia is not the way to solve the problem.”

Abdel-Samad said to solve the problem, teaching in mosques that encourages violent jihad must be curbed.

Many who fought for ISIS are returning to their home countries in Europe, he noted.

“And then we wake up and learn that one of them drove a truck into a crowd,” he said.

Such violent offenders, he suggested, should be put “before an international tribunal, and [society should] inflict harsh punishment on them.”

Abdel-Samad warned that violence is embedded deeply in Muslim culture, and it all comes from its founder.

“I am criticizing a man who has been dead for 1,400 years. He was married to 13 women. He waged 80 wars in the last eight years of his life. He took women as prisoners of war. Why should an enlightened person in the 21st century not criticize this man?” he said.

Source: Islam is violent because of founder, Muslim expert says