Repudiate pro-fascist Green Party!

Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein just announced her running mate as Ajamu Baraka, who she hails as "a powerful, eloquent spokesperson for the transformative, radical agenda whose time has come—an agenda of economic, social, racial, gender, climate, indigenous and immigrant justice." (Politico) Among his touted credentials is that he served on the board of Amnesty International, where he apparently did anti-death penalty work. That is certainly a worthy cred. But it is also hilariously ironic in light of Baraka's vigorous support for what is probably the bloodiest regime on the planet right now: the genocidal dictatorship of Syria's Bashar Assad.

We have noted Jill Stein's deeply embarrassing parroting of Assad regime propaganda. But Baraka's statements are far worse. As "Public Intervenor for Human Rights" (sic!) in Stein's pretentious "Shadow Cabinet," Baraka actually issued a statement in 2014 hailing Assad's thoroughly controlled pseudo-elections that year which confirmed his inherited dictatorial rule. It was entitled: "Elections in Syria: The People Say No to Foreign Intervention." It crowed about Assad's widespread "support" among the Syrian people, and how the opposition was "fomented" by the "gangster states of NATO."

It really takes some chutzpah to be boosting Baraka's Amnesty International creds when Amnesty is vigorously protesting the Assad regime's ongoing aerial terror against civilians, its strangulation of besieged areas, and its strategy of "using starvation as a weapon of war and deliberately causing unbearable suffering to those living in opposition-held areas." 

Baraka's work against the death penalty is cast in a horrifically ironic light by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights finding that the Assaad regime is systematically killing detainees in its areas of control, amounting to the crime against humanity of "extermination."

A credential more reflective of Baraka's actual politics is his years of work for the (reliably reactionary) Counterpunch, a pseudo-left website that was thoroughly exposed as a de facto propaganda arm of Assad's regime when it actually provided a platform to Bouthaina Shaaban, the regime's official public relations advisor.  Counterpunch now has a piece boasting: "Jill Stein Picks Long-Time CounterPuncher Ajamu Baraka as Her VP Running Mate." Among Baraka's contributions to Counterpunch is a reworking of his screed hailing the 2014 Syrian pseudo-elections as a victory for "dignity and self-determination."

This is even worse that Stein's own glib denialism about the Assad regime's chemical attacks—which continue even now. But Stein obviously shares her running mate's ultra-reactionary views on Syria. She also spoke out against the (purely fictional) Obama "obsession with toppling the government in Damascus" at a a Moscow forum organized by Kremlin state media mouthpiece RT, which was followed by a dinner attended by Vladimir Putin, as her website proudly notes.

So the top candidate of the ticket that purports to represent peace and human rights breaks bread with the man whose warplanes are raining daily death down on Syrians. And while the slogan of the Arab Revolution from Tunisia to Egypt to Libya to Syria has been "the people want the fall of the regime," she stigmatizes "regime change" as a Washington conspiracy. This is once again what we call imperial narcissism.

This all constitutes a sickening betrayal of the Syrian people, who, through five years of horror, have put more on the line for human rights and democracy than the deluded, self-satisfied, unserious Green Party could ever aspire to. We don't care if Stein and Baraka talk a good line on GMOs or whatever. There are some lines you do not cross, and support for a fascist regime that is carrying out daily war crimes is one of them. 

Shame, shame, shame on anyone who votes for Jill Stein.

  1. Hideous hypocrisy of Jill Stein

    Stein is the first to remind us of Hillary Clinton's complicity in the 2009 Honduran coup, and subsequent reign of terror there—while she abets the dramatically greater state terror of the Assad regime. This amounts to cynical exploitation of the Hondurans for propaganda.

    And the difference is that Clinton can actually defeat Trump. All Stein can do is abet his victory by being a splitter. And Stein's actual politics are no better than Clinton's. The Green Party is no alternative to the Democrats. It is every bit as morally bankrupt.

  2. Ajamu Baraka: conspiranoid crank

    Beyond belief. It emerges that Jill Stein's running mate Ajamu Baraka is a contributor to a conspiranoid anthology with the unseemly title of Another French False Flag: Bloody Tracks from Paris to San Bernardino. ("From the folks who brought you We Are NOT Charlie Hebdo! Free Thinkers Question the French 9/11.") Other contributors include Reagan admin vet Paul Craig Roberts and notorious Jew-hater Gilad Atzmon.

    Here's a rad idea. Do you think when there is a ghastly terror attack somewhere, leftists in the West should try to identify and support progressive forces on the ground mobilizing in response…. as opposed to making up wacky conspiracy theories that merely exploit the victims for propaganda?

    Down with the reactionary Green Party.

    1. Progressive dissident calls out Green Party’s Assad-shilling

      Stanley Heller makes further note of Ajamu Baraka's conspiranoia (including the old US-created-ISIS trope) in a piece for New Politics entitled "A Challenge to the Green Party on Syria." With the Green Party convention underway in Houston, Heller modestly suggests the platform include statements in support of the Arab Revolution and solidarity with the democratic resistance in Syria. We assume Heller is just giving them the benefit of the doubt. There is no way such planks would be accepted by an entity that has strayed so far from the supposed Green values of "grassroots democracy" and "nonviolence."

      AmericaBlog meanwhile notes Stein's trip to Moscow earlier this year, where she had zilch to say about Russian human rights abuses or aggression in Syria and Ukraine, but lectured about the  "need to rein in US exceptionalism, and totally reform and revise our foreign policy so that it is based on international law, human rights and diplomacy.” Utterly pathetic.

      AmericaBlog can't help noting that Trump energy advisor Carter Page in Moscow last month praised Putin and dissed the supposed US "focus on democratization…and regime change" as "hypocritical."

      Stein-Trump convergence around Putin-philia, it seems.

    2. Ajamu Baraka linked to Holocaust denier

      Radical Archives website points out that Kevin Barrett, editor of Another French False Flag, has a long history of spreading Holocaust-revisionist propaganda. Lovely such examples are posted on their page. They write:

      • Jill Stein, or whoever is running her twitter account, has refused to reply to tweets, but has “liked” a tweet saying it's acceptable that Baraka is working with a Holocaust Denier.

      This is your "progressive" third-party ticket? You can keep it.

  3. More pro-Assad propaganda from Green ticket

    The (ever-problematic) MondoWeiss runs an embarsssingly uncritical interview with Ajamu Baraka in which he again portrays the Syrian Revolution as Western-created astroturf: "What we see in Syria is another example of destabilization and war imposed on the state simply in order to attempt to clean up the previous mistakes that the US and the Western states made when they decided to destroy the Iraqi state."

    Muftah meanwhile runs a critique of the Green Party position on Syria which includes a quote from Jill Stein in which she explicitly called for supporting a reconsolidation of Assad rule throughout the country: 

    Stein issued a foolish statement on November 2, 2015, opposing American ground troops in Syria and accusing President Barack Obama of trying to engineer "regime change" in the country. In her statement, she urged the U.S. government to work with Syria, Russia, and Iran "to restore all of Syria to control by the government rather than Jihadi rebels."

    However, note that the link back to the original source—a page on the Jill2016 website—now comes up as: "The page you were looking for was not found." It appears that, once again, Jill thought better of her abject dictator-shilling after the fact and attempted to purge it from the web…

    1. Jill Stein’s Assad-shilling saved from Memory Hole… again

      Sam Hamad has a piece in The New Arab calling out Jill Stein over her above-cited call for the US to join with Russia "to restore all of Syria to control by the government." Hamad helpfully provdes the Wayback Machine archive of the now-scrubbed page from Stein's website.

      So the "peace" candidate turns out to actually be a pro-war candidate—who will not even take responsibility for her own words. Pathetic.

  4. Slicker pro-Assad propaganda from Green ticket

    It seems the Jill2016 page has finally issued a public position on Syria. Here is the text, with propaganda words in bold, followed by our critique:

    The situation in Syria is complicated and disastrous, with an all out civil war in Syria, and a proxy war among many powers seeking influence in the region. US pursuit of regime change in Libya and Iraq created the chaos that promotes power grabs by extremist militias. Many of the weapons we are sending into Syria to arm anti-government militias end up in the hands of ISIS. In Syria it’s extremely difficult to sort out this complicated web of resistance fighters, religious extremists and warlords with backing from regional and world powers.

    The one thing that is clear is that US meddling in the Middle East is throwing fuel on the fire.

    I call for principled collaboration in bringing a weapons embargo to the region, freezing the bank accounts of countries that continue to fund terrorist groups, promoting a ceasefire, and supporting inclusive peace talks. The region is extremely complicated.

    The best thing we can do for Syria, the Middle East and the world is to de-escalate this conflict, and involve as many of the players as we can in that de-escalation.

    The word "complicated" is always invoked by those who seek the comfort of neutrality in the face of aggression. We have had to call out Richard Falk and Phyllis Bennis for identical equivocation. You would never hear either of them using that word about, say, Palestine. But in Stein's case it is even worse, because she is actually on the side of the genocidal regime in Syria.

    While the Great Powers are indeed attempting to cultivate proxies in Syria, the term "proxy war" is found offensive by Syrians, as it implies they are not autonomous actors. Stein gives us the condescending "proxy war" line—but not a syllable about solidarity with the democratic forces in Syria.

    One again, "regime change" is invoked as a Washington design and not the demand of the Syrian people. The Syrian Revolution began under the Arab Spring slogan: "The people want the downfall of the regime!" And "progressives" (sic) in the West act as if any call for "regime change" is a sinister neocon plot. Why is the American "left" today so suspicious of revolution?

    "Libya and Iraq" are conflated, as if they were the same situation. There was no revolution going on in Iraq when the US invaded in 2003. And the US never invaded Libya—just backed up the revolutionary forces with air-strikes, as the third leg of an alliance with France and the UK. To blame the chaos in Libya on "US pursuit of regime change"—rather than the suppression of civil society by 40 years of Qaddafi rule, finally resulting in a social explosion—is sheer imperial narcissism.

    "Many of the weapons we are sending into Syria to arm anti-government militias end up in the hands of ISIS." Oh? May we please see some evidence of this? We'll be waiting, Jill. Certainly, not arming the democratic forces fighting ISIS would be far more of a boon to ISIS. So this assertion is both a lie and patently illogical.

    Second use of dishonest word "complicated."

    So the "one thing that is clear" is the destructive role of the US—not the genocide being carried out by the Assad regime with Russian support, or the continued desperate resistance of Syria's democratic forces. Sickening.

    Jill calls for "freezing the bank accounts of countries that continue to fund terrorist groups." Yet On The Issues notes she wants to "Stop economic sanctions…against Iran"—the country backing the biggest terrorist in Syria, Bashar Assad. Which is it, Jill?

    What does the feel-good term "inclusive peace talks" mean? Including the genocidal Assad regime? By implication, yes—but not ISIS, of course. Despite the fact that Assad has killed far more Syrians than ISIS.

    Same thing for "involve as many of the players as we can." This is merely a reiteration of her pro-Assad position as articulated in her scrubbed comment noted above—but with greater subtlety and less honesty. Don't fall for it.