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The BRICS Revolt: Is Biden’s War in Ukraine Fueling the Collapse of US Hegemony? Plus: Film Documents CIA’s Covert Takeover of Hollywood, w/ Roger Stahl
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August 08, 2023
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Good evening. It's Monday, August 7. Welcome to a new episode of SYSTEM UPDATE, our live nightly show that airs every Monday through Friday, at 7:00 pm Eastern, exclusively here on Rumble, the free speech alternative to YouTube.

Tonight: While the U.S. fixates obsessively on the war in Ukraine – and on the apparently vital question of who will govern provinces in Eastern Ukraine – the rest of the world is reorganizing its core alliance and power structures. For the last twenty years, an alliance of developing countries called "BRICS" – named for its key members: Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa – has been rapidly growing. It would be a clear exaggeration to assert that BRICS is on the verge of replacing the U.S. and NATO and the various neoliberal institutions of the West in exercising hegemony, but every year, it is getting closer to doing so. 

Nothing has fueled the ambitions of BRICS more than the virtually monomaniacal fixation of the U.S. National Security State on the war in Ukraine. While the U.S. sends tens of billions of dollars, after tens of billions of dollars, depletes its own weapons stockpiles, and gives away major concessions in order to avoid a humiliating loss to Moscow, the BRICS alliance and its undisputed leader, China, has been aggressively expanding its influence and power on every continent on the planet other than North America and Antarctica. Washington's obsession with Kyiv in this war is providing a major boost to BRICS and in part by distracting American and European policymakers, but even more so by fueling the core narrative that BRICS exploits to fuel its growth, namely that the U.S. has a long history of colonizing the developing world, of abusing its hegemonic power at everyone else's expense, and of attempting to rule the world through superior military force and threats of endless war. 

What matters is not so much whether this narrative is correct, though clearly, at least parts of it are, but rather how the U.S. involvement in the war in Ukraine with no end in sight is enabling Beijing, Moscow and other BRICS members to play on long-standing resentments toward the U.S. and bring more and more countries out of the sphere of influence of the U.S., NATO and into the seemingly much more comforting arms of the China-led BRICS alliance. We'll examine all the implications of exactly how this is taking place, where it's taking place, and how the war in Ukraine is the biggest boost to it. 

Then, it is probably not surprising to learn that Hollywood has long ensured that its biggest films about war and the American military align with the U.S. government's propagandistic narratives and policy aims. But an extraordinarily well-researched and compelling documentary released last year, called “Theaters of War”, demonstrates just how deep, multipronged and systematic the control by the Pentagon and the U.S. security state over many of the most popular studio films, including ones that do not appear to be directly about topics of the military or war. FOIA has unearthed sprawling and rigid contracts between the Pentagon and the CIA on the one hand, and some of the most famous producers and directors of many of Hollywood's most successful films on the other, that give those agencies full power and script approval in return to giving filmmakers various rights and privileges that are often necessary for the film that only the Pentagon and the CIA can provide, such as access to aircraft carriers, fighter jets and even top secret information. 

The director and narrator of this truly compelling film, the University of Georgia professor, Roger Saul, will be with us tonight to talk about this film's key revelations and just how longstanding and deep this control is over the most influential mass-marketed films that Hollywood has produced. 

As a reminder, every Tuesday and Thursday night after our live show here on Rumble, we have a live interactive show for subscribers only on our Locals platform, which is part of Rumble and is designed to be interactive in nature. We take your comments and critiques and ideas for topics to cover and for guests to speak to. 

To become a member, which gives you access to that show, simply join our Locals community by clicking the Join button, which is right below the video player on the Rumble page. That will give you access to all of that content, and you’ll be helping support the independent journalism that we do here. 

In fact, one of our subscribers and a participant in that Locals community is the person who brought this film to my attention and the attention of our team here. And that's what caused us to watch it and become so excited about speaking to the director and telling you about the film. So, it really is interactive in nature and provides great value to us to be able to speak directly with our audience – and I hope to our audience as well.

As another reminder, System Update is available in podcast form as well. You can follow us on Spotify, Apple and all other major podcasting platforms. The episodes are posted 12 hours after they first air, live, here on Rumble and you can rate and review each episode which helps us spread the visibility of the program.

One more reminder: we are encouraging our viewers to download the Rumble app, which is genuinely of high quality and will enable able you to follow our show and to turn on notifications, which means the minute we go live on air, it will send you a notification to whatever place you ask for it to be sent.

We also encourage you to encourage others to download the Rumble app and support this platform, which I really believe is one of the very few on the Internet that has a genuine dedication to protecting the free speech of all of its creators and all of its journalists, and also, more broadly, the free speech values in our political discourse.

For now, welcome to a new episode of System Update, starting right now.

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CLIP: Glenn Greenwald Debates Alan Dershowitz on Iran

Glenn warns against waging wars during last week’s debate against Alan Dershowitz on whether the U.S. should strike Iran’s nuclear facilities.

Glenn argues: “We don't go around the world attacking other countries or trying to remove their government because we want to give those people freedom and democracy. We only [attack] when we see a government that doesn't do our bidding."

We are grateful to The Soho Forum and Reason for hosting the spirited debate. You can listen to the full debate here: https://reason.com/podcast/2024/05/24/glenn-greenwald-and-alan-dershowitz-debate-bombing-iran/

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Listen to this Article: Reflecting New U.S. Control of TikTok's Censorship, Our Report Criticizing Zelensky Was Deleted

For years, U.S. officials and their media allies accused Russia, China and Iran of tyranny for demanding censorship as a condition for Big Tech access. Now, the U.S. is doing the same to TikTok. Listen below.

Listen to this Article: Reflecting New U.S. Control of TikTok's Censorship, Our Report Criticizing Zelensky Was Deleted
WEEKLY WEIGH-IN: We Want to Hear From YOU!

What’s happening in politics that you want to talk about? Are there any burning topics you think Glenn needs to cover? Any thoughts you’d like to share?

This post will be pinned to our profile for the remainder of this week, so comment below anytime with your questions, insights, future topic ideas/guest recommendations, etc. Let’s get a conversation going!

Glenn will respond to a few comments here—and may even address some on our next supporters-only After Show.

Thank you so much for your continued support through another week of SYSTEM UPDATE with Glenn Greenwald!

🏆Dog-of-the-Week:

Dog-of-the-Week goes to SYLVESTER! Our beloved canine cohost ensured Glenn and Victor had moral support as they conducted the After-Show.

Are you able to do a segment on Evan Gershkovich? What the accurate vs. inaccurate accounts are and how it relates to US/Russian relations?

The duplicity of the congressmen and senators is staggering and sickening. They spew the same old talking points to disguise their actions in either faith or wisdom, even though it is neither. Whether blasphemous idolatry towards Israel, supporting the Ukraine Proxy War or even war with China over Taiwan, it is all both nauseating and a telling sign of being bought and paid for. I have yet to see anyone tell me in scripture where anything is said to worship anything other than God, yet these people all do or claim to.

If Ron Paul, Col. MacGregor and Judge Napolitano know about what is going on in Ukraine and Israel, all of Congress does as well. They know yet view AIPAC or MIC support as more important. They all need to be fired.

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GOP War Hawks, Corporatists Revolt Against JD Vance; Demanding Low-Wage Workers Be Fired for Online Postings
Video Transcript

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Podcast: Apple - Spotify 

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Good evening. It's Wednesday, July 17. 

Tonight, JD Vance, the 39-year-old first-term Republican senator from Ohio and the Republican vice-presidential nominee, will take the stage at the Republican National Convention to deliver what will certainly be his most watched and most important speech in his short political career. The symbolism is obvious: by choosing the first-ever radical candidate to appear on a major party national ticket, Trump is clearly signaling where he thinks the future of his MAGA movement lies, and in whose hands he envisions its continuation. 

However, not everyone in his party is happy with Trump's choice, to put it very mildly. Two separate wings of the Republican Party – the neocons and war hawks from the Bush-Cheney era, as well as the Reaganite believers in corporatist economic policies – are making their opposition to Vance and, indeed, their anger over his selection, very clear. It has long been obvious that, unlike the Democratic Party – which is almost entirely homogenized, unified in lockstep – the Trump era has ushered in a vibrant and sometimes bitter and, I think, healthy intra-party dispute in the Republican Party over the direction of what is called “the conservative movement,” what updates its needs from the past, as well as both the domestic and especially foreign policy that party ought to be pursuing. The negative reaction to Vance, among some of the worst and most destructive factions in the country are highly illustrative of what the Republican Party had been, why Donald Trump succeeded so successfully in 2016 by running against it and where some people – such as JD Vance and obviously Donald Trump – are trying to take the party in the future. 

Then, since October 7, we have been continuously documenting here on the show the excitement and enthusiasm on much of the pro-Israel right for so many of the values, the tactics and the weapons they long came to despise. As the sole providence of the “woke” left. In the name of protecting Israel, they have caused the censorship, firing, legal restrictions and other punishments imposed on American citizens who are simply harsh critics of Israel and the U.S.’s financing of its wars and/or supporters of the Palestinian cause. Countless people since October 7, in media, government, business and academia, have lost their jobs or otherwise been punished for the crime of expressing opposition to Israel and to the acts of that foreign government. But now, quite predictably, those tactics on the part of that sector of the right are starting to expand into other areas of other issues and starting to find quite a dark expression. Anybody who – in the wake of Saturday's assassination attempt on Donald Trump – publicly lamented that the bullet missed him, in other words, people who were wishing violent death to Donald Trump or saying it was deserved and it would be good for the country, are obviously expressing a despicable and twisted sentiment that goes without saying. And to the extent those doing that are people who wield some sort of significant influence or power in this country, demands for them to be held accountable for such statements will obviously be reasonable. That's what it means to wield public power and influence. 

That is not what's happening. Just as has been true of the efforts by the pro-Israel right to punish ordinary people, people with no power or influence for their speech since October 7, the campaign to punish people for expressing such demented thoughts about Trump is being aimed at those who wield no power. People who are hourly-wage workers for giant retailers, low-wage cashiers at places like Home Depot and the like. And so, I think it provokes the question, is it ever just or noble to target the least powerful and economically advantaged people in our society for the crime of simply saying something that was ill-advised, untoward, or even reprehensible after they get home from a 12-hour shift at a miserable job and they post something like that to twenty or so of their friends on Facebook? Should their lives be destroyed over that, their job taken away, rendered unemployable, their reputations permanently marred? That is what some on the right are actually doing and, although we certainly agree that the opinions they're targeting are, as we said, quite repugnant, we really want to examine both the wisdom and ethics of aiming those weapons at ordinary citizens who have zero power influence of any kind – in fact, the least amount of influence of power in our country. 

Finally, the independent roving reporter Michael Tracy continues to rove around the Republican National Convention in Milwaukee, where he is manically conducting more and more interviews of influential Republican politicians and others who are present at the Convention. For our program tonight, we have his interviews with people like Sheriff Joe Arpaio, Reps Andy Barr and Brian Mast, as well as Senator Ted Cruz, of Texas. 

For now, welcome to a new episode of System Update, starting right now. 

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SYSTEM UPDATE RECAP: July 8-12
Weekly Recap

Welcome to the SYSTEM UPDATE recap: your weekend digest featuring everything we’ve covered throughout the previous week. 

Prefer to listen to your daily news analysis? Reminder that FULL episodes of SYSTEM UPDATE are available anywhere you listen to podcasts🎙️


MONDAY, JULY 8 - EPISODE 293

Biden Cannot Be Forced Out of Race Democratically by Oligarchs; What the U.K. and French Elections Mean for Establishment Politics in Europe

Biden, though mentally unfit for office, clings to power as Democrats and corporate media fail to force him out of the race. Elections in the U.K. and France, proclaimed by the media to be a victory for the left center, in reality are a major loss for establishment centers of power. 

 

Full transcript available for paid supporters: HERE

WATCH THE EPISODE

 

TIMESTAMPS: 

Intro (10:27)

Under Pressure (16:25)

Centrist Collapse In Europe (1:00:33)

Outro (1:38:08)

 

TUESDAY, JULY 9 - EPISODE 294

Biden Administration Blames Russia for Age Concerns; Crackdowns on Israel's Critics Escalate in U.S.

The Biden administration resurrects the Russiagate conspiracy – once again – to shield him from growing calls to drop out. Speech crackdowns on U.S. college campuses reach new heights as three deans are removed at Columbia for texts that touch on “ancient antisemitic tropes.” 

 

Full transcript available for paid supporters: HERE

WATCH THE EPISODE

 

TIMESTAMPS: 

Intro (9:10)

Russiagate, the Sequel (13:57)

Campus Crackdown (40:25)

Death Toll in Gaza Rises Dramatically (1:22:50)

Outro (1:35:21)

 

Supporters-Only After-Show for Tuesday, July 9

We moved to Locals for our supporters-only, interactive after-show where Glenn shared his thoughts on some audience questions and comments:

 

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Available for paid supporters here

Want to join us every Tuesday and Thursday for this supporter-exclusive, live after-show? Become a paid supporter here!

 

WEDNESDAY, JULY 10 - EPISODE 295

Media Now Admits About Biden What it Long Denied; Is Biden a "Good and Decent Man"?; Ukraine War Appears Permanent During NATO Summit

The corporate media finally admitted what it denied and lied to the public about: Biden is unfit for office. A “good and decent man” is often used to describe Joe Biden moments before democrats denounce him as a mentally unfit candidate; Glenn investigates just how much of a “decent man” Biden has been. The Ukraine war appears endless as the NATO Summit kicks off in Washington.

 

Full transcript available for paid supporters: HERE

WATCH THE EPISODE

 

TIMESTAMPS: 

Intro (11:52)

Media Admits Biden Impairment (18:43)

A Decent Man? (48:59)

Endless Wars (1:22:45)

Outro (1:32:00)

 

FRIDAY, JULY 12 - EPISODE 296

Oligarchs Overriding the Will of Democratic Voters; Many Democrats Claim Push Against Biden is Racist; What Happened to Gaza in Liberal Discourse?

Democrat oligarchs scramble to remove Joe Biden from the ticket. Many Democrats complain that there is a racist element in forcing Biden out of the race, showing the constantly shifting nature of identity politics. Joe Biden has supported and financed – through American tax dollars – the war in Gaza, however liberal discourse around that war has all but ceased in the wake of the 2024 election, to only proclaim how great of a man he is. 

 

Full transcript available for paid supporters: HERE

WATCH THE EPISODE

 

TIMESTAMPS:

Intro (10:31)

Oligarchic Coup? (17:57)

Racially Biased Resignation Calls (46:38)

Liberals Now Silent on Gaza (1:05:28)

Outro (1:34:43)

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Michael Tracey LIVE at RNC in Milwaukee
Interview

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Podcast: Apple - Spotify 

Rumble App: Apple - Google


Michael Tracey LIVE at RNC in Milwaukee

 

All right. Our good, good friend of the show, Michael Tracey, who is, as I always say, a very independent, sometimes annoyingly independent, roving journalist, is in Milwaukee covering the Republican National Convention for us. He's there with our social media manager and producer, Meagan O'Rourke. They have been doing a great job covering the convention, doing interviews with all sorts of people. Rumble has a booth there, that's how we were able to get credentials. 

The last couple of days. Michael has talked to several different people with really interesting interviews. One of them is Mayor JonDavid Longo, who was present at the assassination attempt. He was a mayor of Slippery Rock, a city uptown, very close to where that occurred. He also was able to speak with Rep. Mike Collins, the Republican of Georgia, and Congressman Mike Lawler, the Republican from New York, who is not only probably one of the most vocal supporters of Israel in the entire Congress, but was the sponsor of that law that made it illegal in the educational sector to express all sorts of criticism to Israel that had been very common, the H.R. 6090, which passed the House and Senate by an overwhelming majority and went to the president, who then signed it, because pro-Israel views speed through the Congress with overwhelming majorities, for reasons we've covered many times, and hat was one of the gravest assaults on free speech in many years.  

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Michael was able to talk to him about that as well. So, we're going to show you these interviews. 


M. Tracey: All right. We are on the floor of the Republican National Convention right now. Gaze out at the amazing sights. I've never had more fun in my life. I guess what we're going to do is just kind of poke around and see if there's anybody of note to speak to. Let's see who I can spot. 


Congresswoman Victoria Spartz of Indiana

 

M. Tracey: Oh. How are you, Ms. Spartz? 

 

Rep. Victoria Spartz: How are you? Good. 

 

M. Tracey: What's your reaction to JD Vance getting the nomination? 

 

Rep. Victoria Spartz: That's good, you know. But I think, you know, we have a lot of great candidates, we have a very long bench, but it's all about President Trump and Make America Great. 

 

M. Tracey: What do you expect for a second term for President Trump in terms of, Ukraine and Israel as compared to the Biden administration? 

 

Rep. Victoria Spartz: I think, you know, as President Trump said, you know, we need to restore peace. We need to restore our economy so that we have the ability for people to get wealth back and have growth in the economy because right now, inflation and this pattern is going to destroy a lot of people. And I think this is something about the future of the country and strengthen the country's sense of the borders, strengthen the people and really brings peace around the world. We have a disaster right now. It's awful what's happening. 

 

M. Tracey: President Trump has said that he has a good relationship with Zelenskyy, and some people question that because they think he's Putin's puppet or this kind of thing, which is silly. So, what is this relationship with Zelenskyy and Ukraine? 

 

Rep. Victoria Spartz: Listen, it's not too bad because […]

 

M. Tracey: Representative Spartz, you are Ukrainian, correct? 

 

Rep. Victoria Spartz: I originally grew up there, but I'll tell you, it's about peace through strength. And President Trump had a lot of peace around the world and aggressors didn't move. And his policy it's to bring peace and actually put pressure on countries like Russia and China. He never gets too much credit but what he created in the Middle East was the Abraham Accords, headed to Russia to move further. He was the one who actually put sanctions on North Stream 2, and forced more production of energy. He has put pressure on China, not to […] 

 

M. Tracey: Put any sanctions on Russia. 

 

Rep. Victoria Spartz: That's right. And he is the one who actually forced Europeans, Canada to step up to create more deterrence, to spend money to deter Russia. He doesn't get credit for that. But his foreign policy was pretty powerful. 

 

M. Tracey: Well, Trump continues supporting funding for Ukraine? I've spoken to other members of Congress, in the Senate, who said that he supported the National Security Supplemental in April to send many billions to Israel and Ukraine, will continue supporting that? 

 

Rep. Victoria Spartz: Listen, it's not about – We cannot be stupid how we spend money. We need to have strategy and oversight. The Soviet Union was defeated not by weapons, but by smart strategy, by smart energy policy. And that's what it takes. And financial policy. And that's what he can bring to the table. Not to have never-ending wars that cost a lot of money and a lot of lives. And that's what you have to be much smarter. And he's – it's he's a very smart man. 

 

M. Tracey: What about the Biden administration policy, where they allow Ukraine to use U.S. weapons to hit certain targets within Russia? But it's never clear what the parameters are. 

 

Rep. Victoria Spartz: It's all politics. And ultimately, you know, we have a serious war and we shouldn't be doing it. Biden. You know what? They did it and threatened Putin over Twitter or X and in reality, slow walk at the aid. Okay. We need to have a serious conversation that Putin understands he shouldn't have advanced and he can not what he's going to do but force Europeans to step up. 

 

M. Tracey: Do you think Trump would remove some of the constraints that Biden has tried to impose on Ukraine? 

 

Rep. Victoria Spartz: Trump will do whatever it takes to bring peace back and that's what we need. And he will stand with allies like Israel. He won't put pressure on a lot of countries like Europeans that actually being not serious about this situation and now it's become a problem for all of us. And also seriously dealing with China, playing games with Iran and Russia to destabilize the whole world and come here. So I think he's very serious and he's brilliant on his foreign policy because he's unpredictable. That deters a lot of aggression. 

 

M. Tracey: All right. Thank you, Congresswoman. 


Congressman Mike Lawler of New York

 

M. Tracey: So, I want to ask you a couple of questions about a forthcoming Trump administration and Israel policy. You spent a lot of time on that. Also, issues around antisemitism. Do you expect to for Trump to be more aggressive in combating antisemitism, using the mechanisms available in the federal government to pursue some of the initiatives that you've tried to advocate in Congress? What's your general synopsis of that? 

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