How the private equity buyout industry works (videos)

Dandelion Salad

bravenewfilms on January 19, 2008

http://warongreed.org/facts.php

Jeff Faux, author of The Global Class War, explains how the private equity buyout industry works, and how it hurts American workers and our economy.

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Al Qaeda & the “War on Terrorism” by Michel Chossudovsky

Dandelion Salad

by Michel Chossudovsky
Global Research, January 20, 2008

The following text was first published in Italian in: Giuletto Chiesa (Editor), Zero, Perché la versione ufficiale sull’ 11/9 è un Falso [Zero: Why the Official Version on 9/11 is a Falsehood], Piemme, Casale Monferrato, 2007.

A detailed analysis of the relevant issues covered in this article is also contained in the author’s book America’s “War on Terrorism”, Global Research, 2005

Introduction

One of the main objectives of war propaganda is to “fabricate an enemy”. The “outside enemy” personified by Osama bin Laden is “threatening America”.

Pre-emptive war directed against “Islamic terrorists” is required to defend the Homeland. Realities are turned upside down. America is under attack.

In the wake of 9/11, the creation of this “outside enemy” has served to obfuscate the real economic and strategic objectives behind the war in the Middle East and Central Asia. Waged on the grounds of self-defense, the pre-emptive war is upheld as a “just war” with a humanitarian mandate.

As anti-war sentiment grows and the political legitimacy the Bush Administration falters, doubts regarding the existence of this illusive “outside enemy” must be dispelled.

Counter-terrorism and war propaganda are intertwined. The propaganda apparatus feeds disinformation into the news chain. The terror warnings must appear to be “genuine”. The objective is to present the terror groups as “enemies of America.”

Ironically, Al Qaeda –the “outside enemy of America” as well as the alleged architect of the 9/11 attacks– is a creation of the CIA.

From the outset of the Soviet-Afghan war in the early 1980s, the US intelligence apparatus has supported the formation of the “Islamic brigades”. Propaganda purports to erase the history of Al Qaeda, drown the truth and “kill the evidence” on how this “outside enemy” was fabricated and transformed into “Enemy Number One”.

The US intelligence apparatus has created it own terrorist organizations. And at the same time, it creates its own terrorist warnings concerning the terrorist organizations which it has itself created. Meanwhile, a cohesive multibillion dollar counterterrorism program “to go after” these terrorist organizations has been put in place.

Portrayed in stylized fashion by the Western media, Osama bin Laden, supported by his various henchmen, constitutes America’s post-Cold war bogeyman, who “threatens Western democracy”. The alleged threat of “Islamic terrorists”, permeates the entire US national security doctrine. Its purpose is to justify wars of aggression in the Middle East, while establishing within America, the contours of the Homeland Security State.

Historical Background

What are the historical origins of Al Qaeda? Who is Osama bin Laden?

The alleged mastermind behind the 9/11 terrorists attacks, Saudi-born Osama bin Laden, was recruited during the Soviet-Afghan war, “ironically under the auspices of the CIA, to fight Soviet invaders”.(Hugh Davies, “`Informers’ point the finger at bin Laden; Washington on alert for suicide bombers.” The Daily Telegraph, London, 24 August 1998).

In 1979 the largest covert operation in the history of the CIA was launched in Afghanistan:

“With the active encouragement of the CIA and Pakistan’s ISI, who wanted to turn the Afghan Jihad into a global war waged by all Muslim states against the Soviet Union, some 35,000 Muslim radicals from 40 Islamic countries joined Afghanistan’s fight between 1982 and 1992. Tens of thousands more came to study in Pakistani madrasahs. Eventually, more than 100,000 foreign Muslim radicals were directly influenced by the Afghan jihad.” (Ahmed Rashid, “The Taliban: Exporting Extremism”, Foreign Affairs, November-December 1999).

This project of the US intelligence apparatus was conducted with the active support of Pakistan’s Inter Services Intelligence (ISI), which was entrusted in channelling covert military aid to the Islamic brigades and financing, in liason with the CIA, the madrassahs and Mujahideen training camps.

U.S. government support to the Mujahideen was presented to world public opinion as a “necessary response” to the 1979 Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in support of the pro-Communist government of Babrak Kamal.

The CIA’s military-intelligence operation in Afghanistan, which consisted in creating the “Islamic brigades”, was launched prior rather than in response to the entry of Soviet troops into Afghanistan. In fact, Washington’s intent was to deliberately trigger a civil war, which has lasted for more than 25 years.

The CIA’s role in laying the foundations of Al Qaeda is confirmed in an 1998 interview with Zbigniew Brzezinski, who at the time was National Security Adviser to President Jimmy Carter:

Brzezinski: According to the official version of history, CIA aid to the Mujahideen began during 1980, that is to say, after the Soviet army invaded Afghanistan, [on] 24 December 1979. But the reality, secretly guarded until now, is completely otherwise. Indeed, it was July 3, 1979, that President Carter signed the first directive for secret aid to the opponents of the pro-Soviet regime in Kabul. And that very day, I wrote a note to the President in which I explained to him that in my opinion, this aid was going to induce a Soviet military intervention.

Question: Despite this risk, you were an advocate of this covert action. But perhaps you yourself desired this Soviet entry into war and looked to provoke it?

Brzezinski: It isn’t quite that. We didn’t push the Russians to intervene, but we knowingly increased the probability that they would.

Question: When the Soviets justified their intervention by asserting that they intended to fight against a secret involvement of the United States in Afghanistan, people didn’t believe them. However, there was a basis of truth. You don’t regret anything today?

Brzezinski: Regret what? That secret operation was an excellent idea. It had the effect of drawing the Russians into the Afghan trap and you want me to regret it? The day that the Soviets officially crossed the border, I wrote to President Carter. We now have the opportunity of giving to the USSR its Vietnam War. Indeed, for almost 10 years, Moscow had to carry on a war unsupportable by the government, a conflict that brought about the demoralization and finally the breakup of the Soviet empire.

Question: And neither do you regret having supported the Islamic fundamentalism, having given arms and advice to future terrorists?

Brzezinski: What is most important to the history of the world? The Taliban or the collapse of the Soviet empire? Some stirred-up Moslems or the liberation of Central Europe and the end of the Cold War? ( “The CIA’s Intervention in Afghanistan, Interview with Zbigniew Brzezinski, President Jimmy Carter’s National Security Adviser”, Le Nouvel Observateur, Paris, 15-21 January 1998, published in English, Centre for Research on Globalisation, http://www.globalresearch.ca/articles/BRZ110A.html, 5 October 2001, italics added.)

Consistent with Brzezinski’s account, a “Militant Islamic Network” was created by the CIA.

The “Islamic Jihad” (or holy war against the Soviets) became an integral part of the CIA’s intelligence ploy. It was supported by the United States and Saudi Arabia, with a significant part of the funding generated from the Golden Crescent drug trade:

“In March 1985, President Reagan signed National Security Decision Directive 166 … [which] authorize[d] stepped-up covert military aid to the Mujahideen, and it made clear that the secret Afghan war had a new goal: to defeat Soviet troops in Afghanistan through covert action and encourage a Soviet withdrawal. The new covert U.S. assistance began with a dramatic increase in arms supplies — a steady rise to 65,000 tons annually by 1987 … as well as a “ceaseless stream” of CIA and Pentagon specialists who travelled to the secret headquarters of Pakistan’s ISI on the main road near Rawalpindi, Pakistan. There, the CIA specialists met with Pakistani intelligence officers to help plan operations for the Afghan rebels.”(Steve Coll, The Washington Post, July 19, 1992.)

The Central Intelligence Agency using Pakistan’s ISI as a go-between played a key role in training the Mujahideen. In turn, the CIA-sponsored guerrilla training was integrated with the teachings of Islam. The madrasahs were set up by Wahabi fundamentalists financed out of Saudi Arabia: “[I]t was the government of the United States who supported Pakistani dictator General Zia-ul Haq in creating thousands of religious schools, from which the germs of the Taliban emerged.”(Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA), “RAWA Statement on the Terrorist Attacks in the U.S.”, Centre for Research on Globalisation (CRG),
http://globalresearch.ca/articles/RAW109A.html , 16 September 2001)

Predominant themes were that Islam was a complete socio-political ideology, that holy Islam was being violated by the atheistic Soviet troops, and that the Islamic people of Afghanistan should reassert their independence by overthrowing the leftist Afghan regime propped up by Moscow. (Dilip Hiro, Fallout from the Afghan Jihad, Inter Press Services, 21 November 1995.)

Pakistan’s ISI Used as a “Go-Between”

CIA covert support to the “Islamic Jihad” operated indirectly through the Pakistani ISI — i.e. the CIA did not channel its support directly to the Mujahideen. For these covert operations to be “successful”, Washington was careful not to reveal the ultimate objective of the “Jihad”, which consisted not only in destabilising the secular (pro-Soviet) government in Afghanistan, but also destroying the Soviet Union.

In the words of the CIA’s Milton Beardman, “We didn’t train Arabs.” Yet, according to Abdel Monam Saidali, of the Al-aram Centre for Strategic Studies in Cairo, bin Laden and the “Afghan Arabs” had been imparted “with very sophisticated types of training that was allowed to them by the CIA”. (National Public Radio, Weekend Sunday (NPR) with Eric Weiner and Ted Clark, 16 August 1998).

The CIA’s Beardman confirmed, in this regard, that Osama bin Laden was not aware of the role he was playing on behalf of Washington. According to bin Laden (as quoted by Beardman): “Neither I, nor my brothers, saw evidence of American help.” (National Public Radio, Weekend Sunday (NPR) with Eric Weiner and Ted Clark, transcript, 16 August 1998).

Motivated by nationalism and religious fervour, the Islamic warriors were unaware that they were fighting the Soviet Army on behalf of Uncle Sam. While there were contacts at the upper levels of the intelligence hierarchy, Islamic rebel leaders in the war theatre had no contacts with Washington or the CIA.

With CIA backing and the funnelling of massive amounts of U.S. military aid, the Pakistani ISI had developed into a “parallel structure wielding enormous power over all aspects of government”. (Dipankar Banerjee, “Possible Connection of ISI With Drug Industry”, India Abroad, 2 December 1994). The ISI had a staff composed of military and intelligence officers, bureaucrats, undercover agents and informers, estimated at 150,000. (Ibid).

Meanwhile, CIA operations had also reinforced the Pakistani military regime led by General Zia Ul Haq:

“Relations between the CIA and the ISI had grown increasingly warm following [General] Zia’s ouster of Bhutto and the advent of the military regime. … During most of the Afghan war, Pakistan was more aggressively anti-Soviet than even the United States. Soon after the Soviet military invaded Afghanistan in 1980, Zia [ul Haq] sent his ISI chief to destabilize the Soviet Central Asian states. The CIA only agreed to this plan in October 1984.

The CIA was more cautious than the Pakistanis. Both Pakistan and the United States took the line of deception on Afghanistan with a public posture of negotiating a settlement, while privately agreeing that military escalation was the best course.” (Diego Cordovez and Selig Harrison, Out of Afghanistan: The Inside Story of the Soviet Withdrawal, Oxford University Press, New York, 1995. See also the review of Cordovez and Harrison in International Press Services, 22 August 1995).

The CIA sponsored Narcotics Trade

The history of the drug trade in Central Asia is intimately related to the CIA’s covert operations. Prior to the Soviet-Afghan war, opium production in Afghanistan and Pakistan was directed to small regional markets. There was no local production of heroin. (Alfred McCoy, Drug Fallout: the CIA’s Forty Year Complicity in the Narcotics Trade. The Progressive, 1 August 1997).

Researcher Alfred McCoy’s study confirms that within two years of the onslaught of the CIA operation in Afghanistan, “the Pakistan-Afghanistan borderlands became the world’s top heroin producer, supplying 60 per cent of U.S. demand.” (Ibid)

“CIA assets again controlled this heroin trade. As the Mujahideen guerrillas seized territory inside Afghanistan, they ordered peasants to plant opium as a revolutionary tax. Across the border in Pakistan, Afghan leaders and local syndicates under the protection of Pakistan Intelligence operated hundreds of heroin laboratories. During this decade of wide-open drug-dealing, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency in Islamabad failed to instigate major seizures or arrests. … (Ibid)

Afghanistan is a strategic hub in Central Asia, bordering on China’s Western frontier and on the former Soviet Union. While it constitutes a land bridge for the oil and gas pipeline corridors linking the Caspian sea basin to the Arabian sea, it is also strategic for its opium production, which today, according to UN sources, supplies more than 90 % of the World’s heroin market, representing multi-billion dollar revenues for business syndicates, financial institutions, intelligence agencies and organized crime. (See Michel Chossudovsky, America’s “War on Terrorism, Global Research, 2005, Chapter XVI)

Protected by the CIA, a new surge in opium production unfolded in the post cold War era. Since the October 2001 US invasion of Afghanistan, opium production has increased 33 fold since the US led invasion. The annual proceeds of the Golden Crescent drug trade are estimated between 120 and 194 billion dollars (2006), representing more than one third of the worldwide annual turnover of the narcotics trade. (Michel Chossudovsky, Heroin is good for Your Health, Occupation Forces Support Afghan Drug Trade, Global Research, April 2007. see also Douglas Keh, Drug Money in a Changing World, Technical document No. 4, 1998),

From the Soviet-Afghan War to the “War on Terrorism”

Despite the demise of the Soviet Union, Pakistan’s extensive military-intelligence apparatus (the ISI) was not dismantled. In the wake of the Cold War, the CIA continued to support the Islamic brigades out of Pakistan. New undercover initiatives were set in motion in the Middle East, Central Asia, the Balkans and south East Asia. In the immediate wke of the Cold War, Pakistan’s ISI “served as a catalyst for the disintegration of the Soviet Union and the emergence of six new Muslim republics in Central Asia”. (International Press Services, 22 August 1995).

Meanwhile, Islamic missionaries of the Wahabi sect from Saudi Arabia had established themselves in the Muslim republics, as well as within the Russian federation, encroaching upon the institutions of the secular State. Despite its anti-American ideology, Islamic fundamentalism was largely serving Washington’s strategic interests in the former Soviet Union, the Balkans and the Middle East.

Following the withdrawal of Soviet troops in 1989, the civil war in Afghanistan continued unabated. The Taliban were being supported by the Pakistani Deobandis and their political party, the Jamiat-ul-Ulema-e-Islam (JUI). In 1993, the JUI entered Pakistan’s government coalition of Prime Minister Benazzir Bhutto. Ties between the JUI, the Army and the ISI were established. In 1996, with the downfall of the Hezb-I-Islami Hektmatyar government in Kabul, the Taliban not only instated a hardline Islamic government, they also “handed control of training camps in Afghanistan over to JUI factions …”. (Ahmed Rashid, “The Taliban: Exporting Extremism”, Foreign Affairs, November – December, 1999, p. 22.)

The JUI, with the support of the Saudi Wahabi movement, played a key role in recruiting volunteers to fight in the Balkans and the former Soviet Union. (Ibid)

Jane Defence Weekly confirms, that “half of Taliban manpower and equipment originate[d] in Pakistan under the ISI”. In fact, it would appear that following the Soviet withdrawal, both sides in the Afghan civil war continued to receive US covert support through Pakistan’s ISI. (Tim McGirk, “Kabul Learns to Live with its Bearded Conquerors”, The Independent, London, 6 November 1996.)

Backed by Pakistan’s military intelligence, which in turn was controlled by the CIA, the Taliban Islamic State largely served US geopolitical interests. No doubt this explains why Washington had closed its eyes on the reign of terror imposed by the Taliban in 1996, including the blatant derogation of women’s rights, the closing down of schools for girls, the dismissal of women employees from government offices and the enforcement of “the Sharia laws of punishment”. (K. Subrahmanyam, “Pakistan is Pursuing Asian Goals”, India Abroad, 3 November 1995.)

The Golden Crescent drug trade was also being used to finance and equip the Bosnian Muslim Army (starting in the early 1990s) and the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA). In fact, at the time of the September 11 attacks, CIA-sponsored Mujahideen mercenaries were fighting within the ranks of KLA-NLA terrorists in their assaults into Macedonia.

The War in Chechnya

In Chechnya, the renegade autonomous region of the Russian Federation, the main rebel leaders, Shamil Basayev and Al Khattab, were trained and indoctrinated in CIA-sponsored camps in Afghanistan and Pakistan. According to Yossef Bodansky, director of the U.S. Congress’ Task Force on Terrorism and Unconventional Warfare, the war in Chechnya had been planned during a secret summit of HizbAllah International held in 1996 in Mogadishu, Somalia. (Levon Sevunts, “Who’s Calling The Shots? Chechen conflict finds Islamic roots in Afghanistan and Pakistan”, The Gazette, Montreal, 26 October 1999.)

The summit was attended by none other than Osama bin Laden, as well as high-ranking Iranian and Pakistani intelligence officers. It’s obvious that the involvement of Pakistan’s ISI in Chechnya “goes far beyond supplying the Chechens with weapons and expertise: The ISI and its radical Islamic proxies are actually calling the shots in this war.”(Ibid)

Russia’s main pipeline route transits through Chechnya and Dagestan. Despite Washington’s condemnation of “Islamic terrorism”, the indirect beneficiaries of the wars in Chechnya are the Anglo-American oil conglomerates which are vying for complete control over oil resources and pipeline corridors out of the Caspian Sea basin.

The two main Chechen rebel armies (which at the time were led by the (late) Commander Shamil Basayev and Emir Khattab), estimated at 35,000 strong, were supported by Pakistan’s ISI, which also played a key role in organizing and training the rebel army:

“[In 1994] the Pakistani Inter Services Intelligence arranged for Basayev and his trusted lieutenants to undergo intensive Islamic indoctrination and training in guerrilla warfare in the Khost province of Afghanistan at Amir Muawia camp, set up in the early 1980s by the CIA and ISI and run by famous Afghani warlord Gulbuddin Hekmatyar. In July 1994, upon graduating from Amir Muawia, Basayev was transferred to Markaz-i-Dawar camp in Pakistan to undergo training in advanced guerrilla tactics. In Pakistan, Basayev met the highest ranking Pakistani military and intelligence officers: Minister of Defence General Aftab Shahban Mirani, Minister of Interior General Naserullah Babar, and the head of the ISI branch in charge of supporting Islamic causes, General Javed Ashraf (all now retired). High-level connections soon proved very useful to Basayev.” (Ibid)

Following his training and indoctrination stint, Basayev was assigned to lead the assault against Russian federal troops in the first Chechen war in 1995. His organization had also developed extensive links to criminal syndicates in Moscow as well as ties to Albanian organized crime and the KLA. In 1997-1998, according to Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) “Chechen warlords started buying up real estate in Kosovo … through several real estate firms registered as a cover in Yugoslavia.” (Vitaly Romanov and Viktor Yadukha, “Chechen Front Moves To Kosovo”, Segodnia, Moscow, 23 Feb 2000)

Dismantling Secular Institutions in the former Soviet Union

The enforcement of Islamic law in the largely secular Muslim societies of the former Soviet Union has served America’s strategic interests in the region. Previously, a strong secular tradition based on a rejection of Islamic law prevailed throughout the Central Asian republics and the Caucasus, including Chechnya and Dagestan (which are part of the Russian Federation).

The 1994-1996 Chechen war, instigated by the main rebel movements against Moscow, has served to undermine secular state institutions. A parallel system of local government, controlled by the Islamic militia, was implanted in many localities in Chechnya. In some of the small towns and villages, Islamic Sharia courts were established under a reign of political terror.

Financial aid from Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States to the rebel armies was conditional upon the installation of the Sharia courts, despite strong opposition of the civilian population. The Principal Judge and Ameer of the Sharia courts in Chechnya was Sheikh Abu Umar, who “came to Chechnya in 1995 and joined the ranks of the Mujahideen there under the leadership of Ibn-ul-Khattab. … He set about teaching Islam with the correct Aqeedah to the Chechen Mujahideen, many of whom held incorrect and distorted beliefs about Islam.” (Global Muslim News, http://www.islam.org.au/articles/21/news.htm, December 1997).

Meanwhile, state institutions of the Russian Federation in Chechnya were crumbling under the brunt of the IMF-sponsored austerity measures imposed under the Presidency of Boris Yeltsin. In contrast, the Sharia courts, financed and equipped out of Saudi Arabia, were gradually displacing existing State institutions of the Russian Federation and the Chechnya autonomous region.

The Wahabi movement from Saudi Arabia was not only attempting to overrun civilian State institutions in Dagestan and Chechnya, it was also seeking to displace the traditional Sufi Muslim leaders. In fact, the resistance to the Islamic rebels in Dagestan was based on the alliance of the (secular) local governments with the Sufi sheiks:

“These [Wahabi] groups consist of a very tiny but well-financed and well-armed minority. They propose with these attacks the creation of terror in the hearts of the masses. … By creating anarchy and lawlessness, these groups can enforce their own harsh, intolerant brand of Islam. … Such groups do not represent the common view of Islam, held by the vast majority of Muslims and Islamic scholars, for whom Islam exemplifies the paragon of civilization and perfected morality. They represent what is nothing less than a movement to anarchy under an Islamic label. … Their intention is not so much to create an Islamic state, but to create a state of confusion in which they are able to thrive.34 Mateen Siddiqui, “Differentiating Islam from Militant ‘Islamists’” San Francisco Chronicle, 21 September 1999

Promoting Secessionist Movements in India

In parallel with its covert operations in the Balkans and the former Soviet Union, Pakistan’s ISI has provided, since the 1980s, support to several secessionist Islamic insurgencies in India’s Kashmir.

Although officially condemned by Washington, these covert ISI operations were undertaken with the tacit approval of the U.S. government. Coinciding with the 1989 Geneva Peace Agreement and the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan, the ISI was instrumental in the creation of the militant Jammu and Kashmir Hizbul Mujahideen (JKHM). (See K. Subrahmanyam, “Pakistan is Pursuing Asian Goals”, India Abroad, 3 November 19950.

Im the immediate wake of 9/11, the December 2001 terrorist attacks on the Indian Parliament — which contributed to pushing India and Pakistan to the brink of war — were conducted by two Pakistan-based rebel groups, Lashkar-e-Taiba, (Army of the Pure) and Jaish-e-Muhammad (Army of Mohammed), both of which are covertly supported by Pakistan’s ISI. (Council on Foreign Relations, “Terrorism: Questions and Answers, Harakat ul-Mujahideen, Lashkar-e-Taiba, Jaish-e-Muhammad”, http://www.terrorismanswers.com/groups/harakat2.html, Washington 2002.Note: This report is no longer available on the CFR website.)

The timely attack on the Indian Parliament, followed by the ethnic riots in Gujarat in early 2002, were the culmination of a process initiated in the 1980s, financed by drug money and abetted by Pakistan’s military intelligence.

Needless to say, these ISI-supported terrorist attacks serve the geopolitical interests of the U.S. The powerful Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), which plays a behind-the-scenes role in the formulation of U.S. foreign policy, confirms that the Lashkar and Jaish rebel groups are supported by the ISI:

Through its Inter-Service Intelligence Agency (ISI), Pakistan has provided funding, arms, training facilities, and aid in crossing borders to Lashkar and Jaish. This assistance — an attempt to replicate in Kashmir the international Islamist brigade’s “holy war” against the Soviet Union in Afghanistan — helped introduce radical Islam into the long-standing conflict over the fate of Kashmir. …

Have these groups received funding from sources other than the Pakistani government?

Yes. Members of the Pakistani and Kashmiri communities in England send millions of dollars a year, and Wahabi sympathizers in the Persian Gulf also provide support.

Do Islamist terrorists in Kashmir have ties to Al-Qaeda?

Yes. In 1998, the leader of Harakat, Farooq Kashmiri Khalil, signed Osama bin Laden’s declaration calling for attacks on Americans, including civilians, and their allies. Bin Laden is also suspected of funding Jaish, according to U.S. and Indian officials. And Maulana Massoud Azhar, who founded Jaish, travelled to Afghanistan several times to meet bin Laden.

Where were these Islamist militants trained?

Many were given ideological training in the same madrasahs, or Muslim seminaries, that taught the Taliban and foreign fighters in Afghanistan. They received military training at camps in Afghanistan or in villages in Pakistan-controlled Kashmir. Extremist groups have recently opened several new madrasas in Azad Kashmir.

(Council on Foreign Relations, “Terrorism: Questions and Answers, Harakat ul-Mujahideen, Lashkar-e-Taiba, Jaish-e-Muhammad”,

http://www.terrorismanswers.com/groups/harakat2.html ,

Washington 2002. This text was removed from the CFR website in 2006)

What the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) fails to acknowledge are the links between the ISI and the CIA and the fact that the “international Islamic brigades” were a creation of the CIA.

U.S.-Sponsored Insurgencies in China

Also of significance in understanding America’s “War on Terrorism” is the existence of ISI-supported Islamic insurgencies on China’s Western border with Afghanistan and Pakistan. In fact, several of the Islamic movements in the Muslim republics of the former Soviet Union are integrated with the Turkestan and Uigur movements in China’s Xinjiang-Uigur autonomous region.

These separatist groups — which include the East Turkestan Terrorist Force, the Islamic Reformist Party, the East Turkestan National Unity Alliance, the Uigur Liberation Organization and the Central Asian Uigur Jihad Party — have all received support and training from Osama bin Laden’s Al Qaeda. (According to official Chinese sources quoted in UPI, 20 November 2001.). The declared objective of these Chinese-based Islamic insurgencies is the “establishment of an Islamic caliphate in the region”. (Defence and Security, May 30, 2001).

The caliphate would integrate Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan (West Turkestan) and the Uigur autonomous region of China (East Turkestan) into a single political entity.

The “caliphate project” encroaches upon Chinese territorial sovereignty. Supported by various Wahabi “foundations” from the Gulf States, secessionism on China’s Western frontier is, once again, consistent with U.S. strategic interests in Central Asia. Meanwhile, a powerful U.S.-based lobby is channelling support to separatist forces in Tibet.

By tacitly promoting the secession of the Xinjiang-Uigur region (using Pakistan’s ISI as a “go-between”), Washington is attempting to trigger a broader process of political destabilization and fracturing of the People’s Republic of China. In addition to these various covert operations, the U.S. has established military bases in Afghanistan and in several of the former Soviet republics, directly on China’s Western border.

The militarization of the South China Sea and of the Taiwan Straits is also an integral part of this strategy.

Yugoslavia

Throughout the 1990s, the Pakistan Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) was used by the CIA as a go-between — to channel weapons and Mujahideen mercenaries to the Bosnian Muslim Army in the civil war in Yugoslavia. According to a report of the London based International Media Corporation:

“Reliable sources report that the United States is now [1994] actively participating in the arming and training of the Muslim forces of Bosnia-Herzegovina in direct contravention of the United Nations accords. US agencies have been providing weapons made in … China (PRC), North Korea (DPRK) and Iran. The sources indicated that … Iran, with the knowledge and agreement of the US Government, supplied the Bosnian forces with a large number of multiple rocket launchers and a large quantity of ammunition. These included 107mm and 122mm rockets from the PRC, and VBR-230 multiple rocket launchers … made in Iran. … It was [also] reported that 400 members of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard (Pasdaran) arrived in Bosnia with a large supply of arms and ammunition. It was alleged that the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) had full knowledge of the operation and that the CIA believed that some of the 400 had been detached for future terrorist operations in Western Europe.

The US Administration has not restricted its involvement to the clandestine contravention of the UN arms embargo on the region … It [also] committed three high-ranking delegations over the past two years [prior to 1994] in failed attempts to bring the Yugoslav Government into line with US policy. Yugoslavia is the only state in the region to have failed to acquiesce to US pressure.” (International Media Corporation, Defence and Strategy Policy, U.S. Commits Forces, Weapons to Bosnia, London, 31 October 1994)

“From the Horse’s Mouth”

Ironically, the US Administration’s undercover military-intelligence operations in Bosnia, which consisted in promoting the formation of “Islamic brigades”, have been fully documented by the Republican Party. A lengthy Congressional report by the Senate Republican Party Committee (RPC) published in 1997, largely confirms the International Media Corporation report quoted above. The RPC Congressional report accuses the Clinton administration of having “helped turn Bosnia into a militant Islamic base” leading to the recruitment through the so-called “Militant Islamic Network,” of thousands of Mujahideen from the Muslim world:

“Perhaps most threatening to the SFOR mission – and more importantly, to the safety of the American personnel serving in Bosnia – is the unwillingness of the Clinton Administration to come clean with the Congress and with the American people about its complicity in the delivery of weapons from Iran to the Muslim government in Sarajevo. That policy, personally approved by Bill Clinton in April 1994 at the urging of CIA Director-designate (and then-NSC chief) Anthony Lake and the U.S. ambassador to Croatia Peter Galbraith, has, according to the Los Angeles Times (citing classified intelligence community sources), “played a central role in the dramatic increase in Iranian influence in Bosnia.

(…)

Along with the weapons, Iranian Revolutionary Guards and VEVAK intelligence operatives entered Bosnia in large numbers, along with thousands of mujahedin (“holy warriors”) from across the Muslim world. Also engaged in the effort were several other Muslim countries (including Brunei, Malaysia, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, and Turkey) and a number of radical Muslim organizations. For example, the role of one Sudan-based “humanitarian organization,” called the Third World Relief Agency, has been well documented. The Clinton Administration’s “hands-on” involvement with the Islamic network’s arms pipeline included inspections of missiles from Iran by U.S. government officials… the Third World Relief Agency (TWRA), a Sudan-based, phoney humanitarian organization … has been a major link in the arms pipeline to Bosnia. … TWRA is believed to be connected with such fixtures of the Islamic terror network as Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman (the convicted mastermind behind the 1993 World Trade Center bombing) and Osama Bin Laden, a wealthy Saudi émigré believed to bankroll numerous militant groups. [Washington Post, 9/22/96]

(Congressional Press Release, Republican Party Committee (RPC), U.S. Congress, Clinton-Approved Iranian Arms Transfers Help Turn Bosnia into Militant Islamic Base, Washington DC, 16 January 1997, available on the website of the Centre of Research on Globalisation (CRG) at http://globalresearch.ca/articles/DCH109A.html. The original document is on the website of the U.S. Senate Republican Party Committee (Senator Larry Craig), at http://www.senate.gov/~rpc/releases/1997/iran.htm; see also Washington Post, 22 September 1999, Emphasis added)

Complicity of the Clinton Administration

In other words, the Republican Party Committee report confirms unequivocally the complicity of the Clinton Administration with several Islamic fundamentalist organisations including Al Qaeda.

The Republicans wanted at the time to undermine the Clinton Administration. However, at a time when the entire country had its eyes riveted on the Monica Lewinsky scandal, the Republicans no doubt chose not to trigger an untimely “Iran-Bosniagate” affair, which might have unduly diverted public attention away from the Lewinsky scandal. The Republicans wanted to impeach Bill Clinton “for having lied to the American People” regarding his affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky. On the more substantive “foreign policy lies” regarding drug running and covert operations in the Balkans, Democrats and Republicans agreed in unison, no doubt pressured by the Pentagon and the CIA not to “spill the beans”.

From Bosnia to Kosovo

The “Bosnian pattern” described in the 1997 Congressional RPC report was replicated in Kosovo. With the complicity of NATO and the US State Department, Mujahideen mercenaries from the Middle East and Central Asia were recruited to fight in the ranks of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) in 1998-99, largely supporting NATO’s war effort.

Confirmed by British military sources, the task of arming and training of the KLA had been entrusted in 1998 to the US Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) and Britain’s Secret Intelligence Services MI6, together with “former and serving members of 22 SAS [Britain’s 22nd Special Air Services Regiment], as well as three British and American private security companies”. (The Scotsman, Edinburgh, 29 August 1999).

The US DIA approached MI6 to arrange a training programme for the KLA, said a senior British military source. `MI6 then sub-contracted the operation to two British security companies, who in turn approached a number of former members of the (22 SAS) regiment. Lists were then drawn up of weapons and equipment needed by the KLA.’ While these covert operations were continuing, serving members of 22 SAS Regiment, mostly from the unit’s D Squadron, were first deployed in Kosovo before the beginning of the bombing campaign in March. (Truth in Media, “Kosovo in Crisis”, Phoenix, Arizona, http://www.truthinmedia.org/, 2 April 1999).

While British SAS Special Forces in bases in Northern Albania were training the KLA, military instructors from Turkey and Afghanistan financed by the “Islamic jihad” were collaborating in training the KLA in guerilla and diversion tactics.:(The Sunday Times, London, 29 November 1998).

“Bin Laden had visited Albania himself. He was one of several fundamentalist groups that had sent units to fight in Kosovo, … Bin Laden is believed to have established an operation in Albania in 1994 … Albanian sources say Sali Berisha, who was then president, had links with some groups that later proved to be extreme fundamentalists.” (Ibid)

Congressional Testimonies on KLA-Al Qaeda links

In the mid-1990s, the CIA and Germany’s Secret Service, the BND, joined hands in providing covert support to the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA). In turn, the latter was receiving support from Al Qaeda.

According to Frank Ciluffo of the Globalized Organised Crime Program, in a December 2000 testimony to the House of Representatives Judicial Committee:

“What was largely hidden from public view was the fact that the KLA raise part of their funds from the sale of narcotics. Albania and Kosovo lie at the heart of the “Balkan Route” that links the “Golden Crescent” of Afghanistan and Pakistan to the drug markets of Europe. This route is worth an estimated $400 billion a year and handles 80 percent of heroin destined for Europe.” (U.S. Congress, Testimony of Frank J. Cilluffo, Deputy Director of the Global Organized Crime Program, to the House Judiciary Committee, Washington DC, 13 December 2000).

According to Ralf Mutschke of Interpol’s Criminal Intelligence division also in a testimony to the House Judicial Committee:

“The U.S. State Department listed the KLA as a terrorist organization, indicating that it was financing its operations with money from the international heroin trade and loans from Islamic countries and individuals, among them allegedly Usama bin Laden” . Another link to bin Laden is the fact that the brother of a leader in an Egyptian Jihad organization and also a military commander of Usama bin Laden, was leading an elite KLA unit during the Kosovo conflict.”(U.S. Congress, Testimony of Ralf Mutschke of Interpol’s Criminal Intelligence Division, to the House Judicial Committee, Washington DC, 13 December 2000.)

Madeleine Albright Covets the KLA

These KLA links to international terrorism and organised crime documented by the US Congress were totally ignored by the Clinton Administration. In fact, in the months preceding the bombing of Yugoslavia, Secretary of State Madeleine Albright was busy building a “political legitimacy” for the KLA. The paramilitary army had –from one day to the next– been elevated to the status of a bona fide “democratic” force in Kosovo. In turn, Madeleine Albright has forced the pace of international diplomacy: the KLA had been spearheaded into playing a central role in the failed “peace negotiations” at Rambouiillet in early 1999.

The Senate and the House tacitly endorse State Terrorism

While the various Congressional reports confirmed that the US government had been working hand in glove with Osama bin Laden’s Al Qaeda, this did not prevent the Clinton and later the Bush Administration from arming and equipping the KLA. The Congressional documents also confirm that members of the Senate and the House knew the relationship of the Administration to international terrorism. To quote the statement of Rep. John Kasich of the House Armed Services Committee: “We connected ourselves [in 1998-99] with the KLA, which was the staging point for bin Laden…” (U.S. Congress, Transcripts of the House Armed Services Committee, Washington, DC, 5 October 1999,)

In the wake of the tragic events of September 11, Republicans and Democrats in unison have given their full support to the President to “wage war on Osama”.

In 1999, Senator Jo Lieberman had stated authoritatively that “Fighting for the KLA is fighting for human rights and American values.” In the hours following the October 7 missile attacks on Afghanistan, the same Jo Lieberman called for punitive air strikes against Iraq: “We’re in a war against terrorism… We can’t stop with bin Laden and the Taliban.” Yet Senator Jo Lieberman, as member of the Armed Services Committee of the Senate had access to all the Congressional documents pertaining to “KLA-Osama” links. In making this statement, he was fully aware that that agencies of the US government as well as NATO were supporting international terrorism.

“The Islamic Militant Network” and NATO join hands in Macedonia

In the wake of the 1999 war in Yugoslavia, the terrorist activities of the KLA were extended into Southern Serbia and Macedonia. Meanwhile, the KLA –renamed the Kosovo Protection Corps (KPC)– was elevated to United Nations status, implying the granting of “legitimate” sources of funding through United Nations as well as through bilateral channels, including direct US military aid.

And barely two months after the official inauguration of the KPC under UN auspices (September 1999), KPC-KLA commanders – using UN resources and equipment – were already preparing the assaults into Macedonia, as a logical follow-up to their terrorist activities in Kosovo. According to the Skopje daily Dnevnik, the KPC had established a “sixth operation zone” in Southern Serbia and Macedonia:

“Sources, who insist on anonymity, claim that the headquarters of the Kosovo protection brigades [i.e. linked to the UN sponsored KPC] have [March 2000] already been formed in Tetovo, Gostivar and Skopje. They are being prepared in Debar and Struga [on the border with Albania] as well, and their members have defined codes.” (Macedonian Information Centre Newsletter, Skopje, 21 March 2000, published by BBC Summary of World Broadcast, 24 March 2000.)

According to the BBC, “Western special forces were still training the guerrillas” meaning that they were assisting the KLA in opening up “a sixth operation zone” in Southern Serbia and Macedonia. (BBC, 29 January 2001.)

Among the foreign mercenaries fighting in Macedonia in 2001 in the ranks of self-proclaimed National Liberation Army (NLA) were Mujahideen from the Middle East and the Central Asian republics of the former Soviet Union. Also within the KLA’s proxy force in Macedonia were senior US military advisers from a private mercenary outfit on contract to the Pentagon as well as “soldiers of fortune” from Britain, Holland and Germany. Some of these Western mercenaries had previously fought with the KLA and the Bosnian Muslim Army. (Scotland on Sunday, 15 June 2001. See also UPI, 9 July 2001. For further details see Michel Chossudovsky, America’s “War on Terrorism”, Global Research, 2005, Chapter III ).

Extensively documented by the Macedonian press and statements of the Macedonian authorities, the US government and the “Islamic Militant Network” were working hand in glove in supporting and financing the self-proclaimed National Liberation Army (NLA), involved in the terrorist attacks in Macedonia. The NLA is a proxy of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA). In turn the KLA and the UN sponsored Kosovo Protection Corps (KPC) are identical institutions with the same commanders and military personnel. KPC Commanders on UN salaries are fighting in the NLA together with the Mujahideen.

In a bitter twist, while supported and financed by Osama bin Laden’s Al Qaeda, the KLA-NLA was also being supported by NATO and the United Nations mission to Kosovo (UNMIK). In fact, the “Islamic Militant Network” still constitutes an integral part of Washington’s covert military-intelligence operations in Macedonia and Southern Serbia.

The KLA-NLA terrorists were funded from US military aid, the United Nations peace-keeping budget as well as by several Islamic organisations including Al Qaeda. Drug money was also used to finance the terrorists with the complicity of the US government. The recruitment of Mujahideen to fight in the ranks of the NLA in Macedonia was implemented through various Islamic groups.

US military advisers mingle with Mujahideen within the same paramilitary force, Western mercenaries from NATO countries fight alongside Mujahideen recruited in the Middle East and Central Asia. And the US media calls this a “blowback” where so-called “intelligence assets” have gone against their sponsors!

But this did not happen during the Cold war! It happened in Macedonia in 2000-2001. Confirmed by numerous press reports, eyewitness accounts, photographic evidence as well as official statements by the Macedonian Prime Minister, who accused the Western military alliance of abetting the terrorists, the US had been supporting the Islamic brigades barely a few months prior to the 9/11 attacks.

Washington’s Hidden Agenda

U.S. foreign policy is not geared towards curbing the tide of Islamic fundamentalism. In fact, it is quite the opposite. The significant development of “radical Islam”, in the wake of the Cold War in the former Soviet Union and the Middle East is consistent with Washington’s hidden agenda. The latter consists in sustaining rather than combating international terrorism, with a view to destabilizing national societies and preventing the articulation of genuine secular social movements directed against the American Empire.

Washington continues to support — through CIA covert operations — the development of Islamic fundamentalism, throughout the Middle East, in the former Soviet Union as well in China and India.

Throughout the developing world, the growth of sectarian, fundamentalist and other such organizations tends to serve U.S. interests. These various organizations and armed insurgents have been developed, particularly in countries where state institutions have collapsed under the brunt of the IMF-sponsored economic reforms.

These fundamentalist organizations contribute by destroying and displacing secular institutions.

Islamic fundamentalism creates social and ethnic divisions. It undermines the capacity of people to organize against the American Empire. These organizations or movements, such as the Taliban, often foment “opposition to Uncle Sam” in a way which does not constitute any real threat to America’s broader geopolitical and economic interests.

Erasing the History of Al Qaeda

Since September 2001, this history of Al Qaeda has largely been erased. The links of successive US administrations to the “Islamic terror network” is rarely mentioned.

A major war in the Middle East and Central Asia, supposedly “against international terrorism” was launched in October 2001 by a government which had been harboring international terrorism as part of its foreign policy agenda. In other words, the main justification for waging war on Afghanistan and Iraq has been totally fabricated. The American people have been deliberately and consciously misled by their government.

This decision to mislead the American people was taken on September 11, 2001 barely a few hours after the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Centre. Without supporting evidence, Osama had already been tagged as the “prime suspect”. Two days later on Thursday the 13th of September — while the FBI investigation had barely commenced — President Bush pledged to “lead the world to victory”.

While the CIA tacitly acknowledges that Al Qaeda was an “intelligence asset” during the Cold War, the relationship is said to “go way back” to a bygone era.

Most post-September 11 news reports tend to consider that these Al Qaeda -CIA links belong to the “bygone era” of the Soviet-Afghan war. They are invariably viewed as irrelevant to an understanding of 9/11 and the “Global War on Terrorism”. Yet barely a few months before 9/11, there was evidence of active collaboration between members of the US military and Al Qaeda operatives in the civil war in Macedonia.

Lost in the barrage of recent history, the role of the CIA, in supporting and developing international terrorist organizations during the Cold War and its aftermath, is casually ignored or downplayed by the Western media.

A blatant example of post-9/11 media distortion is the “blowback” thesis: “Intelligence assets” are said to “have gone against their sponsors; what we’ve created blows back in our face”.1 In a display of twisted logic, the U.S. administration and the CIA are portrayed as the ill-fated victims:

The sophisticated methods taught to the Mujahideen, and the thousands of tons of arms supplied to them by the U.S. — and Britain — are now tormenting the West in the phenomenon known as “blowback”, whereby a policy strategy rebounds on its own devisers.(The Guardian, London, 15 September 2001)

The U.S. media, nonetheless, concedes that “the Taliban’s coming to power [in 1996] is partly the outcome of the U.S. support of the Mujahideen — the radical Islamic group — in the 1980s in the war against the Soviet Union”. 3 But it also readily dismisses its own factual statements and concludes, in chorus, that the CIA had been tricked by a deceitful Osama. It’s like “a son going against his father”.

The Post 9/11 “War on Terrorism”

The “blowback” thesis is a fabrication.

The CIA never severed its ties to the “Islamic Militant Network”. There is ample evidence that Al Qaeda remains a US sponsored intelligence asset.

Al Qaeda is presented as the architect of 9/11 without ever mentioning its historical links to the CIA and Pakistan’s ISI.

While Al Qaeda remains firmly under the control of the US intelligence apparatus, the US administration has repeatedly intimated that this “outside enemy” will strike again, that a “second 9/11’ will occur somewhere in America or in the western World:

[there are] “indications that [the] near-term attacks … will either rival or exceed the [9/11] attacks…

And it’s pretty clear that the nation’s capital and New York city would be on any list…” (Tom Ridge, Christmas 2003)

“You ask, ‘Is it serious?’ Yes, you bet your life. People don’t do that unless it’s a serious situation.” (Donald Rumsfeld, Christmas 2003)

“Credible reporting indicates that Al Qaeda is moving forward with its plans to carry out a large-scale attack in the United States in an effort to disrupt our democratic process… This is sobering information about those who wish to do us harm… But every day we strengthen the security of our nation.” (George W. Bush, July 2004)

“The enemy that struck on 9/11 is fractured and weakened, yet still lethal, still determined to hit us again” (Dick Cheney, July 2006)

“Another [9/11] attack could create both a justification and an opportunity to retaliate against some known targets” (Pentagon official, quoted in the Washington Post, 23 April 2006)

War Propaganda

A terrorist attack on American soil of the size and nature of September 11, would lead –according to former US Central Command (USCENTCOM) Commander, General Tommy Franks, who led the invasion of Iraq in 2003 — to the demise of Constitutional government. In a December 2003 interview, which was barely mentioned in the US media, General Franks had actually outlined a scenario which would result in the suspension of the Constitution and the installation of military rule in America:

“[A] terrorist, massive, casualty-producing event [will occur] somewhere in the Western world – it may be in the United States of America – that causes our population to question our own Constitution and to begin to militarize our country in order to avoid a repeat of another mass, casualty-producing event. (Cigar Aficionado, December 2003)

Franks was alluding to a so-called “Pearl Harbor type event” which would be used to galvanize US public opinion in support of a military government and police state.

The “terrorist massive casualty-producing event” was presented by General Franks as a crucial political turning point. The resulting crisis, social turmoil and public indignation would facilitate a major shift in US political, social and institutional structures.

It is important to understand that General Franks was not giving a personal opinion on this issue. His statement is consistent with the dominant viewpoint both in the Pentagon and the Homeland Security department as to how events might unfold in the case of a national emergency.

“Massive Casualty Producing Events”

The “massive casualty producing event” is a integral part of military doctrine. The destruction and loss of life resulting from a terrorist attack serve to create a wave of public indignation. They create conditions of collective fear and intimidation, which facilitate the derogation of civil liberties and the introduction of police state measures.

The September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon were used to galvanize public support for the invasion of Afghanistan, which took place barely four weeks later. Without supporting evidence, Al Qaeda, which was allegedly supported by the Taliban government, was held responsible for the 911 attacks.

The planning of a major theater war had been ongoing well before 9/11. Whereas the US military was already in an “advanced state of readiness”, well at in advance of the 9/11 attacks, the decision to go to war with Afghanistan was taken on the evening of September 11 and was formally announced the following morning. Meanwhile, NATO invoked Article 5 of the Washington Treaty and declared war on Afghanistan on behalf of all signatory member states of the Atlantic Alliance. NATO’s declaration of war based on the principle of “self-defense” was taken within 24 hours of the September 11 attacks.

Article 5 of the Washington Treaty was first invoked on September 12, 2001. America’s European Allies plus Canada offered their support in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. NATO embraced the US sponsored “Global War on Terrorism”. Fourteen NATO member states sent troops to Afghanistan. (See NATO Review, Summer 2006, http://www.nato.int/docu/review/2006/issue2/english/summaries.html )

Operation Northwoods

The 9/11 “massive casualty producing event” played a crucial role in the process of military planning. It provided, in the eyes of public opinion, a pretext to go to war.

The triggering of “war pretext incidents” is part of the Pentagon’s assumptions. In fact it is an integral part of US military history.

In 1962, the Joint Chiefs of Staff had envisaged a secret plan entitled “Operation Northwoods, to deliberately trigger civilian casualties to justify the invasion of Cuba:

“We could blow up a U.S. ship in Guantanamo Bay and blame Cuba,” “We could develop a Communist Cuban terror campaign in the Miami area, in other Florida cities and even in Washington” “casualty lists in U.S. newspapers would cause a helpful wave of national indignation.” (See the declassified Top Secret 1962 document titled “Justification for U.S. Military Intervention in Cuba”, See Operation Northwoods at http://www.globalresearch.ca/articles/NOR111A.html ).

Terror Warnings and Terror Events

To be “effective” the fear and disinformation campaign cannot solely rely on unsubstantiated “warnings” of future attacks, it also requires “real” terrorist occurrences or “incidents”, which provide credibility to the Administration’s war plans. Propaganda endorses the need to implement “emergency measures” as well as carry out retaliatory military actions.

Both the terror warnings and the terror events have served as a pretext to justify far-reaching military decisions.

Following the July 2005 London bombings, Vice President Dick Cheney was reported to have instructed USSTRATCOM to draw up a contingency plan “to be employed in response to another 9/11-type terrorist attack on the United States”. Implied in the contingency plan is the certainty that Iran would be behind a Second 9/11.

This “contingency plan” used the pretext of a “Second 9/11”, which had not yet happened, to prepare for a major military operation against Iran, while pressure was also exerted on Tehran in relation to its (non-existent) nuclear weapons program.

What is diabolical in this decision of the US Vice President is that the justification presented by Cheney to wage war on Iran rested on Iran’s alleged involvement in a hypothetical terrorist attack on America, which had not yet occurred:

The plan includes a large-scale air assault on Iran employing both conventional and tactical nuclear weapons. Within Iran there are more than 450 major strategic targets, including numerous suspected nuclear-weapons-program development sites. Many of the targets are hardened or are deep underground and could not be taken out by conventional weapons, hence the nuclear option. As in the case of Iraq, the response is not conditional on Iran actually being involved in the act of terrorism directed against the United States. Several senior Air Force officers involved in the planning are reportedly appalled at the implications of what they are doing—that Iran is being set up for an unprovoked nuclear attack—but no one is prepared to damage his career by posing any objections. (Philip Giraldi, Attack on Iran: Pre-emptive Nuclear War , The American Conservative, 2 August 2005)

Are we to understand that US, British and Israeli military planners are waiting in limbo for a Second 9/11, to launch a military operation directed against Syria and Iran?

Cheney’s proposed “contingency plan” did not in the least focus on preventing a Second 9/11. The Cheney plan was predicated on the presumption that Iran would be behind a Second 9/11 and that punitive bombings could immediately be activated, prior to the conduct of an investigation, much in the same way as the attacks on Afghanistan in October 2001, allegedly in retribution for the alleged support of the Taliban government to the 9/11 terrorists.

It is worth noting that one does not plan a war in three weeks: the bombing and invasion of Afghanistan had been planned well in advance of 9/11. As Michael Keefer points out in an incisive review article:

“At a deeper level, it implies that “9/11-type terrorist attacks” are recognized in Cheney’s office and the Pentagon as appropriate means of legitimizing wars of aggression against any country selected for that treatment by the regime and its corporate propaganda-amplification system…. (Michael Keefer, Petrodollars and Nuclear Weapons Proliferation: Understanding the Planned Assault on Iran, Global Research, February 10, 2006)

Since 2001, Vice President Cheney has reiterated his warning of a second 9/11 on several occasions

“The enemy that struck on 9/11 is fractured and weakened, yet still lethal, still determined to hit us again” (Waterloo Courier, Iowa, 19 July 2006, italics added).

“Justification and Opportunity to Retaliate against some known targets”

In April 2006, (former) Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld launched a far-reaching military plan to fight terrorism around the World, with a view to retaliating in the case of a second major terrorist attack on America.

“Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld has approved the military’s most ambitious plan yet to fight terrorism around the world and retaliate more rapidly and decisively in the case of another major terrorist attack on the United States, according to defense officials.

The long-awaited campaign plan for the global war on terrorism, as well as two subordinate plans also approved within the past month by Rumsfeld, are considered the Pentagon’s highest priority, according to officials familiar with the three documents who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak about them publicly.

Details of the plans are secret, but in general they envision a significantly expanded role for the military — and, in particular, a growing force of elite Special Operations troops — in continuous operations to combat terrorism outside of war zones such as Iraq and Afghanistan. Developed over about three years by the Special Operations Command (SOCOM) in Tampa, the plans reflect a beefing up of the Pentagon’s involvement in domains traditionally handled by the Central Intelligence Agency and the State Department. (Washington Post, 23 April 2006)

This plan is predicated on the possibility of a Second 911 and the need to retaliate if and when the US is attacked:

“A third plan sets out how the military can both disrupt and respond to another major terrorist strike on the United States. It includes lengthy annexes that offer a menu of options for the military to retaliate quickly against specific terrorist groups, individuals or state sponsors depending on who is believed to be behind an attack. Another attack could create both a justification and an opportunity that is lacking today to retaliate against some known targets, according to current and former defense officials familiar with the plan.

This plan details “what terrorists or bad guys we would hit if the gloves came off. The gloves are not off,” said one official, who asked not to be identified because of the sensitivity of the subject.” (italics added, Washington Post, 23 April 2006)

The presumption of this military document, is that a Second 911 attack “which is lacking today” would usefully create both a “justification and an opportunity” to wage war on “some known targets [Iran and Syria]”.

Realities are twisted upside down. The disinformation campaign has gone into full gear. The British and US media are increasingly pointing towards “preemptive war” as an act of “self defense” against Al Qaeda and the State sponsors of terrorism, who are allegedly preparing a Second 911. The underlying objective, through fear and intimidation, is ultimately to build public acceptance for the next stage of the Middle East “war on terrorism” which is directed against Syria and Iran.

Concluding Remarks

The threat of an Al Qaeda “Attack on America” is being used profusely by the Bush administration and its indefectible British ally to galvanize public opinion in support of a global military agenda.

Known and documented, the “Islamic terror network” is a creation of the US intelligence apparatus. There is firm evidence that several of the terrorist “mass casualty events” which have resulted in civilian casualties were triggered by the military and/or intelligence services. Similarly, corroborated by evidence, several of the terror alerts were based on fake intelligence as revealed in the London 2006 foiled “liquid bomb attack”, where the alleged hijackers had not purchased airline tickets and several did not have passports to board the aircraft.

The “war on terrorism” is bogus. The 911 narrative as conveyed by the 911 Commission report is fabricated. The Bush administration is involved in acts of cover-up and complicity at the highest levels of government.

Revealing the lies behind 911 would serve to undermine the legitimacy of the “war on terrorism”.

Revealing the lies behind 911 should be part of a consistent antiwar movement.

Without 911, the war criminals in high office do not have a leg to stand on. The entire national security construct collapses like a deck of cards.

Michel Chossudovsky is the author of the international bestseller America’s “War on Terrorism” Global Research, 2005. He is Professor of Economics at the University of Ottawa and Director of the Center for Research on Globalization.

To order Chossudovsky’s book America’s “War on Terrorism”, click here

Global Research Articles by Michel Chossudovsky

The CRG grants permission to cross-post original Global Research articles on community internet sites as long as the text & title are not modified. The source and the author’s copyright must be displayed. For publication of Global Research articles in print or other forms including commercial internet sites, contact: crgeditor@yahoo.com

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© Copyright Michel Chossudovsky, Global Research, 2008
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see

Unraveling the Myth of Al Qaida by Peter Chamberlin

The Mega-Lie Called the “War on Terror”: A Masterpiece of Propaganda By Richard W. Behan

Al Qaeda

Chossudovsky-Michel

Israel’s Nuclear Missile Threat against Iran by Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya

Dandelion Salad

by Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya
Global Research, January 19, 2008

“What troubles me is that perhaps the Americans will attack Iran. (…) That would thrust us [Israel] into a war and the home front [in opposition to Lebanon, the Palestinian Territories, and Syria] is not ready [yet].”

Major-General Ze’evi-Farkash, former Chief of Israel Military Intelligence (March 4, 2007)

In the former Yugoslavia, militarily the NATO campaign was a failure in defeating the Yugoslav military. It was because of the harsh targeting of civilian infrastructure and the slaughter of civilians that Yugoslavia decided to surrender.

The Iranians have learned a great deal from watching the indiscriminate bombardment of Belgrade and Baghdad. The Yugoslavs and the Iraqis did not posses air power or strong air defences, but the Iranians have been working precisely on this matter through the development of their domestic missile industry. It is Tehran’s missile technology, which distinguishes Iran from Yugoslavia and Iraq.

Syria: A Strategic Objective for Israel

It was the Iranian missile arsenal, along with the fact that the Israelis did not penetrate far enough into Lebanese territory, which prevented the Israelis from expanding their July 2006 war on Lebanon into Syria.

Syria was one of the three strategic objectives for the Israelis and the international mainstream media was preparing the public for an outbreak of war between Israel and Syria. [1] The Syrian government was also openly bracing itself for war. [2] Israel wanted to invade Damascus through the vulnerable Lebanese-Syrian border instead of the heavily fortified Israeli-Syrian frontier. However, the Israelis underestimated the strength of the Lebanese Resistance and were not prepared to confront Iran and the Iranian missile arsenal during July of 2006.

In March 2007, thousands of U.S. and Israeli troops amassed in the Negev Desert of Israel in their fourth joint exercise, code-named “Juniper Cobra.” This exercise was designed to test U.S. and Israeli air defence systems.[3]

The exercise was portrayed as routine, but the purpose of the Israeli air defence system was originally created in the 1990s on the assumption of an eventual military confrontation with Syria, Iraq, and Iran.

These 2007 Israeli-U.S. war games were in response to a series of Iranian military exercises and missile tests conducted since 2006. Iranian missile and rocket technology has developed to a level where Iran has successfully launched its first space rocket into orbit and is preparing its own satellite launches. [4]

The Israeli-U.S. tests and war games seem to be geared towards consolidating Israeli air defences in relaiton to Iranian missile capabilities, prior to a possible and long anticipated showdown with Iran and Syria.

By the same token, Israel is also preparing for war with Syria, which has been upgrading and advancing its missile arsenal and technology with the help of both Iran and Russia.

Israel’s Nuclear Missile Test: Veiled Nuclear Threat against Iran?

Is Iran threatening Israel or is it the other way around?

The Israeli government has said that all options at Israel’s disposal are legitimate in crippling Iran. According to Reuters, Israel stated on January 17 that a missile tested by Tel Aviv was “capable of carrying an ‘unconventional payload’ — an apparent reference to the nuclear warheads Israel is assumed to possess, though it has never publicly confirmed their existence.” [5]

Israel Radio (which is the object of censorship regarding military issues), claims that according to unidentified foreign sources, Israel was developing its Jericho III long-range surface-to-surface missile and that  Jericho III has a range which can reach Iranian territory. [6] Are these statements intended to intimidate Tehran and its regional allies in the Middle East?

According to another Reuters report, “Israel is believed to have atomic arms and foreign analysts have said for many years that its Jericho I and Jericho II missiles can carry nuclear warheads.” [7] Without giving its sources the same report also stated, “Amateur photos posted on Israeli news Web sites showed a white plume in the sky above central Israel.” [8] This appears to be a reference to some form of a nuclear weapons test.

NOTES

[1] The Strategic objectives of the Israeli bombardment of Lebanon were the following;

.1. Neutralizing the Lebanese Resistance and finlandizing (pacifying) Lebanon, while empowering Lebanese fractions collaborating with the governments of America, France, and Israel to control Lebanon as a proxy state.

.2. Engage Syria in a devastating war that would open the door for possible U.S. and NATO involvement and eventually result in controlling the Syrian coast and regime change in Damascus.

.3. Militarizing the shores of the Eastern Mediterranean and giving NATO forces valid rational for their naval and troop presence in the region.

[2] Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya, The March to War: Syria Preparing for US-Israeli Attacks, Centre for Research on Globalization, May 24, 2007Syria will intervene if Israeli troop approach, Xinhua News Agency, July 24, 2006; “Syrian Information Minister Mohsen Bilal said on Sunday that Syria will not sit tight if Israeli ground troops invade Lebanon and approach his country, the official SANA news agency reported. ‘If Israel invades Lebanon over ground and comes near to us, which threatens the national security (of Syria), Syria will not sit tight,’ Bilal was quoted as saying in an interview with a Spanish newspaper.”

[3] Aron Heller, Israel, U.S. Test Missile Defense, The Guardian (U.K.), March 18, 2007.

[4] Iran Lunches First Space Rocket, Radio Free Europe/ Radio Liberty (RFE/RL), February 25, 2007Iran rocket claim raises tension, British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), February 25, 2007.

[5] Firouz Sedarat, Israel “would not dare attack Iran”: Ahmadinejad, Reuters, January 17, 2008.

[6] Ori Lewis and Daniel Williams, Israel says carried out missile launching test, Reuters, January 17, 2007.

[7] Ibid.

[8] Ibid.

Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya is an independent writer based in Ottawa specializing in Middle Eastern affairs. He is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG).

Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya is a frequent contributor to Global Research.  Global Research Articles by Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya

The CRG grants permission to cross-post original Global Research articles on community internet sites as long as the text & title are not modified. The source and the author’s copyright must be displayed. For publication of Global Research articles in print or other forms including commercial internet sites, contact: crgeditor@yahoo.com

www.globalresearch.ca contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available to our readers under the provisions of “fair use” in an effort to advance a better understanding of political, economic and social issues. The material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving it for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material for purposes other than “fair use” you must request permission from the copyright owner.

For media inquiries: crgeditor@yahoo.com
© Copyright Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya, Global Research, 2008
The url address of this article is: www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=7838

Kucinich Locked Out of Texas Primary Over Loyalty Oath by Michael Collins + U.S. Supreme Court won’t hear Kucinich’s appeal

Dandelion Salad

by Michael Collins
http://www.opednews.com
Jan. 19, 2008

Dennis Kucinich may not win the Democratic nomination for president, but he’s leaving a pro-democracy legacy across the country. To begin with, this candidate actually discusses critical issues demonstrating his respect for voters. With regard to the voters’ right to know, he just asked for the first recount in memory for a presidential primary simply because it makes perfect sense. The New Hampshire results need a serious second look.

Kucinich struck another blow for democracy by challenging the restrictive loyalty oath required by the Texas Democratic Party to get on the primary ballot. He actually reads the contracts he signs. When presented with the loyalty oath required to run as a Democrat in the Texas primary, Kucinich prudently edited the document to reflect the requirements of free citizens living in a democracy:

read more | digg story

Updated: Jan. 19, 2008 10:34 PM CT

U.S. Supreme Court won’t hear Kucinich’s appeal

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Supreme Court declined Friday to intervene in a dispute between Democratic presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich and Texas’ Democratic Party, which means that Kucinich’s name will not appear on the March 4 primary ballot.

Kucinich fulfilled all the requirements to run in Texas except that he wouldn’t sign an oath to “fully support” the party’s eventual nominee. Kucinich, a U.S. representative from Ohio, crossed out the oath when he submitted his paperwork.

continued…

see

Dennis Kucinich on Texas Democrats loyalty oath (video)

Kucinich Sues Texas Democratic Party for Exclusion From Ballot

Kucinich Campaign files complaint with FCC about CNN Debate

Kucinich Vows to Fight for Changes to FCC Law

Dennis Kucinich: Soul Meets Body (video)

Kucinich-Dennis

Dennis 4 President

Dream versus Nightmare: Pick One – An Open Letter to Barack Obama by The Other Katherine Harris

The Other Katherine Harris

by The Other Katherine Harris

Featured writer
Dandelion Salad

The Other Katherine Harris’s blog
Jan. 19, 2008

If an eloquent speaker speak not the truth, is there a more horrid kind of object in creation?
~ Thomas Carlyle

During a week punctuated by due tribute for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., the incongruity was more flagrant than it might’ve been, but I’d be shuddering at your recent paeans to Ronald Reagan, even if the week had contained nothing more notable than a day in praise of egg whisks.

This is no small thing, Senator Obama. Compared to aiding the radical right by raising alarms about a false Social Security crisis, calling unions “special interests” and decrying health care as a moral peril if Americans are “forced” to have it, your apologia for Reagan is worse. Because his was the smiley face painted on their whole poison pill.

It’s still serving that function today. Your supposed rivals, whose debates are All-the-Reagan-You-Can-Gag-Down buffets, are invoking his ghost in hope that voters will share the same lapse of memory and discernment you displayed on Monday in Reno, telling the Journal Gazette that Ronald Reagan “put us on a fundamentally different path because the country was ready for it. They felt like with all the excesses of the 60s and the 70s and government had grown and grown but there wasn’t much sense of accountability in terms of how it was operating. I think he tapped into what people were already feeling. Which is we want clarity, we want optimism, we want a return to that sense of dynamism and entrepreneurship that had been missing.” (Video and an excellent precis are HERE.)

While I can’t fault your saying, “Ronald Reagan changed the trajectory of America,” that trajectory — which sadly we’ll remain on, until the last neocon policy bites the dust — has been, for most, a path to ruin. As for his encouraging entrepreneurship, small businesses ranked among the first victims of his presidency, along with the poor. Throughout the 30+ years of his abiding revolution, everything has been rigged to profit large corporations and the ultra-rich.

This reality is glibly glossed over in your book, where another defense of Reagan appears: “That Reagan’s message found such a receptive audience … spoke to the failures of liberal government, during a period of economic stagnation, to give middle-class voters any sense that it was fighting for them. For the fact was government at every level had become too cavalier about spending taxpayer money. Too often bureaucracies were oblivious to the cost of their mandates. A lot of liberal rhetoric did seem to value rights and entitlements over duties and responsibilities. Reagan may have exaggerated the sins of the welfare state, and certainly liberals were right to complain that his domestic policies tilted heavily toward elites, with corporate raiders making tidy profits throughout the eighties while unions were busted and the income for the average working stiff flatlined. Nevertheless, by promising to side with those who worked hard, obeyed the law, cared for their families, loved their country, Reagan offered Americans a sense of common purpose that liberals seemed no longer able to muster.” (Page 31)

Senator Obama, are you tragically uninformed, trying to contrive “unity” by pandering to right-wingers or legitimizing their idol from conviction? Surely we can rule out option one, because you’re entirely too smart to speak and write about matters you haven’t studied seriously. Yes, when Reagan started spouting his political vitriol, you were a child. So was I, a somewhat bigger kid, but his words and deeds are well-documented from the mid-1960s onward. Thus, everything I know about him, you must also know.

For instance, while governor of California, he dehumanized welfare recipients, calling the needy “bums”, “cheats” and “a faceless mass waiting for a handout.” He’d campaigned on cutting funds for the poor, saying, “The time has come to stop being our brother’s keeper”. (Some “Christian” sentiment from one who soon styled himself a righteous Bible-thumper, huh?)

Condemning help for working people who lost their jobs, he sneered, “Unemployment insurance is a pre-paid vacation for freeloaders,” and he dismissed upholding minority rights with this argument: “It doesn’t do good to open doors for someone who doesn’t have the price to get in. If he has the price, he may not need the laws. There is no law saying the Negro has to live in Harlem or Watts.”

Our environment meant no more to him than marginalized citizens did. In opposing expanded protection of his state’s majestic redwoods, unique in all the world, he shrugged, “A tree’s a tree. How many do you need to look at?” Given that attitude, it’s fair to say he never really saw one. Something else he never saw was military action. During World War II, Reagan served in an Army film studio — but, with bring-’em-on bravado, he blustered in 1966: “We should declare war on North Vietnam. We could pave the whole country and put parking stripes on it, and still be home by Christmas.”

Consigned to a special hell of hatred in his heart were the young. Of students who dared protest the war, he said they didn’t deserve an education and added, “I’d like to harness their youthful energy with a strap.” His later words were more violent: “If it’s a bloodbath they want, let’s get it over with.” He meant it. Let’s not forget he imposed martial law on the Berkeley campus and endorsed shootings there. As for experimentation with drugs, he deemed it “a repudiation of everything America is” — never mind that no national drug laws existed in this country until after his own birth.

This was a man born in 1911, who was past 50 when he began his life in politics. On generational grounds, the merciful might excuse his weirding-out about the Berkeley scene (short of the shootings), but would any halfway decent human being slash funds to feed low-income and retarded children on the very day when he, freshly made a multi-millionaire via a shady land deal, budgeted a hike in his own salary?

While age alone can’t be fairly be held against anyone, Reagan absolutely represented an Old Guard oligarchy bent on crushing the emerging power of a new, well-educated and open-minded middle class. Between 1964 — when he made his first entrance on the Republican national stage by endorsing Barry Goldwater and was talent-spotted for a gubernatorial run — and his 1980 election as president, he was carefully groomed to sell the corporatist agenda to the masses, while his backers were also spending billions on “think tanks” and hired-gun academics to distort public discourse.

It would be an insult to suggest that you know less than I do about the genesis and development of their colossal Noise Machine — devised in the early Nixon years, when the most powerful gathered to script their reversal of all middle class gains since the New Deal — so how, Senator Obama, can you possibly state that people were “ready for” Reagan with no reference to how they were MADE ready by a constant barrage of deceptions calculated to overwhelm objective journalism and scholarship?

And how can you couch Reagan’s victory in terms of liberal shortcomings, without recognizing that lies were spread daily to mask Jimmy Carter’s real successes? Those were good times. The war, Watergate and the Ford recession were past, unemployment was falling dramatically, real GDP was growing at five percent yearly, the national debt relative to GDP was lower than in 50 years, the inflation rate was reasonable and, on average, we brought home twice the real income that our parents earned. International diplomacy was paying off, too; we had détente with the USSR, troop reductions in Korea, even the Camp David Mideast Peace Accords. A funny thing happened on the way to national satisfaction, though: The better things got, the more the Noise Machine told us to see Carter as incompetent and ourselves as in Big Trouble. For no legitimate reason, the number of Americans who believed we were on the brink of disaster jumped from 41 percent to 64 between 1978 and 1979 and Carter’s approval dropped from 65 percent to 39. The right-wing freakazoids even got the media to question his sanity!

In fact, they were out to drive the citizenry nuts and they succeeded. Fanning fears of runaway inflation and impending economic collapse, they drove Americans to spend now — which people did so madly in 1979 that inflation spiked briefly to 14 percent. Analysts blamed this on Carter — having formed the habit of blaming him for everything that couldn’t be pinned on unions, “bureaucrats” or “entitlements”, but they couldn’t name any particular policy as responsible.

Likewise, the radical right targeted Carter’s sensible energy program aimed at curtailing oil imports and fostering extensive use of solar power. We’d be sitting pretty now, if the neocons hadn’t assured us there was no energy problem and gone back to business as usual under Reagan, who had solar collectors ripped off the White House roof as soon as he moved in.

They further roused the populace to scream for war on Iran. The whole hostage crisis was needless. None would have been taken, had Carter not been endlessly pressured to bring the Shah here. He cared about human life, you see — unlike those who merely prate about the unborn — and it took a bare-faced lie about the Shah’s urgent need for medical treatment obtainable only in this country for Carter to admit him. Then our Embassy people were grabbed, as predictably as after-party cleanup, and Carter turned his attention to preserving their lives. He wouldn’t bomb or invade and Reagan’s backers made dead-certain his diplomacy could never work. Thanks to an underhanded arms deal, the hostages wouldn’t be freed until the neocons’ grandfatherly poster child was sworn in.

Again, I’m not stating anything you don’t know, Senator Obama. Both of us are old enough to remember that period. You were in college in the late 70s and I was a young woman in my 20s. So, in response to your saying Reagan offered “clarity” and “optimism,” I invite you to recall the murky and frightening key words tossed around at the 1980 nominating convention. Kissinger emphasized “weakness … impotent … upheavals … disaster … painful… fear … chaos … feeble … paralysis… humiliation … slipping … crash … whipsawed … unraveling … despair… crushing … turmoil … lost … war … dark forces” — and then the winning candidate’s acceptance speech featured “destroy … disintegrating … weakened … calamity … sacrifice … eaten away… wasted away … harm … injure … turned the national stomach … freeze … exhaustion … destruction … disasters … war…”

None of this strikes me as laissez le bon temps rouler stuff, Senator. Nor did it at the time. But the media lapped it up on toast and Reagan took office amid his wholly manufactured crisis, availing himself of the collective nightmare to implement a radical agenda that combined wanton military overspending with lavish indulgence of corporations and the rich and austerity for everybody else (including increased taxation of the poorest). Assuming office, he said he felt like a captain of a ”ship about to go over the falls,” asserted we were ”in greater danger … than … the day after Pearl Harbor” and told his budget-cutters to be “meaner than junkyard dogs.”

Now let’s recall the editorial cartoons that accompanied his rise: a huge number of them playing on his promise of “bloody cuts” by picturing him with an executioner’s axe. This he wielded supposedly on our behalf, to punish the unworthy, but eventually it fell on almost all of us. Morning in America should have been spelled “mourning”.

The phrase “victims of Reaganomics” isn’t literary. As early as 1984, 150,000 lost lives were quantified by the Congressional Joint Economic Committee, based on average mortality increases during recessions for suicide, homicide, cardiovascular fatalities and other indices of death linked to economic activity. We can double that figure to cover his second four years and still fall far short of the total. We haven’t counted those who died because budgets were cut for child and maternal nutrition programs and for disability benefits –- nor those who died here due to families’ losing health insurance along with a parent’s job — nor the mentally ill, who died after release to “community care” (aka homelessness) when state hospitals were closed –- nor the poor children who could longer receive care in community health centers that closed — nor the children battered to death because support for the formerly successful National Center on Child Abuse and Neglect received almost nothing – nor those killed gradually by reduced environmental protection. And let’s also spare a thought for those who died elsewhere because of reduced foreign aid and Reagan’s support of tyrannical regimes that slaughtered their people.

“The Reagan safety net is a myth. People are dying as the result of these cuts,” reported the honorable journalist Bill Moyers during the winter of 1981-82, when the media — not yet unregulated and conglomerated — retained enough independence to air occasional footage of families sleeping on snowy nights under bridges. Reagan flatly denied it. “My program hasn’t resulted in anyone getting thrown out in the snow or dying,” he said. And the public, by then warped by a decade of right-wing spin, approved. In an opening monologue, Johnny Carson remarked, “The Senate cut one million people off the food stamp rolls yesterday,” and wild cheering, applause and laughter ensued. “Let’s hear it from the truly mean,” he continued.

During Christmas week that winter, 30 million pounds of stockpiled cheese were released as a gift to the hungry Americans Reagan liked to pretend didn’t exist. We were paying $1 million a day to store surplus cheese, milk and butter and another $6 million a day to buy more, but Reagan preferred to let all this food go rancid than distribute it regularly. All who had the will to see the truth could see it, but most chose to deny it, with considerable help from the media. As 10,000 visibly middle class protesters turned out in objection to Reagan’s receiving a “humanitarian” award, TV commentator Gabe Pressman told us, “They clearly are militant radicals.”

As their pain grew more severe, the deceived public endorsed Reagan’s drive for additional scapegoats. Serious crimes weren’t increasing, but the Noise Machine spread the lie that they were and we climbed aboard his lunatic “war on crime” bandwagon. While more prisons were built and harsher sentences imposed, Reagan cut funds for law enforcement in order to keep demand up. We incarcerate far more citizens per capita than any other nation, most for nonviolent offenses, all to satisfy private prison industry profiteers and punish Reagan’s old enemies: minorities and the young.

Similarly, the public bought into his privatization of a host of government functions, although the slightest appeal to reason should have told us that placing a profit-collecting entity between the provider and the recipient of any service means its cost will go up, not down.

Other lies pretended both a rise in teen pregnancy (steadily declining since the late ’50s) and an alleged “baby boom” (although the birth rate per potential mother was dropping). These were ruses to focus attention on reproductive issues and give the Noise Machine a chance to trumpet its case for “family values” and puritanism — against what you defer to them by calling “excesses” of a tolerant time.

After union-bashing began in 1981 and unemployment rose to 9 percent in early 1982, Wall Street pronounced itself delighted by the sudden docility of remaining workers. The plutocrats grew even happier as unemployment soared to nearly 11 percent. It took Reagan less than two years to have more than 12 million Americans out of work, most without unemployment benefits and more than two million of them homeless. More than 40 million of us had lost health benefits, infant mortality was rising and more than 20 percent of our children lived in poverty. GDP dropped by two percent yearly, while the trade deficit climbed past $4 million monthly and every year the government borrowed about $200 billion — set to triple the national debt before the ’80s ended.

Maggie Thatcher was practicing the same tricks across the Pond, privatizing like crazy and doubling unemployment within three years of taking office. The prosperity of the ’60s and ’70s simply had to go, because employees had gotten altogether too uppity. As conservative economist Bill Bonner, who publishes The Daily Reckoning, wrote about a month ago, “The Reagan/Thatcher revolutions … had little to do with conservatism or free market principles. What they … brought was … a way of harnessing market forces for the benefit of the state and the elites who control it.”

When Brits began to see through Maggie — I was living there at the time — she proceeded to wrap them around her pinky finger again by stirring up a wee war in the Falklands. Inspired by her example, we took to shooting down planes in Libya, launching a stupid kerfuffle in Grenada, threatening Castro, messing Nicaragua around in full earnest and playing nuclear war games for the first time in decades. The trans-Atlantic press found it all great fun.

I could keep elaborating the Reagan story for hours, Senator Obama.. I haven’t even touched on the corrupt S&L debacle, the HUD scandal, the Iran-Contra affair that should have brought impeachment, Reagan’s smarmy wooing of social reactionaries into the plutocrats’ club, his opposition (with Jesse Helms) to the MLK holiday, crazy poison scares whipped up as distractions, the devaluation of the dollar, the wasteful military spending, the squeezing out of local businesses by giant chains and the continuous offshoring of American manufacturing jobs that were replaced by ill-paying service work.

When the money supply loosened and growth was allowed to resume, there was no “recovery” for many. The great majority of Americans had lost ground and we’ve continued losing it as Reagan’s policies were extended through the Bush, Clinton and Shrub years. We’re working harder and longer for less, in real terms, than we or our parents did in 1970; in fact, families now earn only 8 percent more with two parents working than one breadwinner made in 1905. And the gap between haves and have-nots has widened famously. We often see it likened to the 1920s; however, the disparity is actually worse than that. Even our society’s traditional promise of upward mobility for the deserving has been broken. Thus, Reaganomics created a new aristrocracy that, as Bill Moyers pointed out, now possesses as much of our nation’s wealth as their counterparts did when our country was a British colony. The American Revolution has been essentially nullified!

Again I ask how you can offer any mild words for Ronald Reagan and his legacy. I ask, too, how you can reasonably believe that bipartisan unity should be the Democratic Party’s goal. Now that we wage-slaves are finally wising up, why should our urgent need to revive social and economic justice be made contingent on what the Masters of Universe may kindly concede?

The facts and statistics cited here are readily available to anyone, so they can’t be new-news to you. This, however, may be. Because you didn’t live in mainland America until 1979, the eve of the Reagan era, let me tell you what things were like before your college days in California and New York. This is meant equally for others unable due to age or geography to remember what we once had –before, by careful plan, it was taken away:

Picture a nation in which every city and town was different. Wherever you traveled, there was a “there” there: local foods and other products to be discovered, along with homes, shops and offices that expressed local tastes and suited the climate. Residents took pride in their community’s uniqueness and were dedicated to improving its schools, libraries, cultural offerings, health resources and recreational opportunities. Locally-owned newspapers and broadcast stations brought word from near and far, usually with no agenda apart from providing an honest service to their audiences and advertisers. Although there were a few large employers and chain stores, small businesses provided about 80 percent of all jobs, so most people were on very friendly terms with their colleagues and even their competitors. Of course some families had more money than others, but seldom enough that they looked down on anyone. We all had much more in common than not and it didn’t take a lot, to feel secure. Nobody feared being bankrupted by illness or injury, because medical costs were reasonable. Even those earning minimum wage had more spending power than they do today. Kids could easily work their way through college, because tuition was cheap (in some states free). Overall, there was a feeling of calm about having what you needed — maybe not all you wanted, but enough — and in that calm were dignity and purpose. We felt confidence in government, too. It kept up the infrastructure nicely, when corporations were paying about half of all income tax (now six or seven percent) and federal agencies existed to do their jobs, not to pretend or refuse to do them. Pollution was on the wane and the rights of minorities and women were increasingly respected, in large part because principled journalists stayed on the watch. It was a lot harder to be shameless while the media still reported events objectively.

Yep, that was America as limned by Rockwell, rather than Rockefellers. It would be a good place to bring up your daughters and it was good enough for us — but not for the grillionaires. As their Noise Machine began to roar, spin and opinion supplanted news and lies could no longer be effectively challenged. Truth was rendered irrelevant, as was the welfare of people, communities and nations. Individually we’ve been reduced to consumers; collectively we’re workforces, troops, markets. Sheep to be fleeced and sheep for the slaughter.

Please, Senator Obama, rethink your charitable analysis of Ronald Reagan and call this lingering reign of horrors what it is. All over the world, people continue to suffer and die under his rusty old corporatist axe every day, just to make the richest richer.

***

I added the pic. ~ Lo

reagan and ron paul

see

Obama’s Dubious Praise for Reagan By Robert Parry

“Free Lunch: How the Wealthiest Americans Enrich Themselves at Government Expense (And Stick You with the Bill)”

How the private equity buyout industry works (videos)

Balkanizing Reagan by Will Durst

01.18.08 Uncensored News Reports From Across The Middle East (video; over 18 only)

Dandelion Salad

Warning

.

This video may contain images depicting the reality and horror of war and should only be viewed by a mature audience.

Selected Episode

Jan. 18, 2008

linktv

For more: http://linktv.org/originalseries
“Hamas’ Interior Ministry Bombed,” Al Jazeera TV, Qatar
“Attacks on Sedrot Must be Stopped,” IBA TV, Israel
“Israel’s Raid on Gaza Unites Palestinians,” Dubai TV, UAE
“Artists Paint Separation Wall,” Al Jazeera English, Qatar
“Bush’s Trip to ME: Politics or the Economy,” Al Arabiya TV, UAE
“Sudan & Iran Seek China’s Support,” Syria TV, Syria
“Iraq Prepares for Ashoora,” Abu Dhabi TV, UAE
“MIR: Gaza- Déjà Vu,” Linkt TV, USA
Produced for Link TV by Jamal Dajani.

Unleashing GMO Seeds: “Food is Power” by Stephen Lendman

Dandelion Salad

by Stephen Lendman
Global Research, January 19, 2008

Reviewing F. William Engdahl’s Seeds of Destruction, Part 3.

Part III

This is the third and final part of Stephen Lendman’s detailed review of William Engdahl’s Seeds of Destruction. The story is chilling and needs to be read in full to learn the type future they plan for us.

Seeds of Destruction

Rockefeller Foundation funding was the Gene Revolution’s catalyst in 1985 with big aims – to learn if GMO plants were commercially feasible and if so spread them everywhere. It was the “new eugenics” and the culmination of earlier research from the 1930s. It was also based on the idea that human problems can be “solved by genetic and chemical manipulations….as the ultimate means of social control and social engineering.” Foundation scientists sought ways to do it by reducing infinite life complexities to “simple, deterministic and predictive models” under their diabolical scheme – mapping gene structures to “correct social and moral problems including crime, poverty, hunger and political instability.” With the development of essential genetic engineering techniques in 1973, they were on their way.

They’re based on what’s called recombitant DNA (rDNA), and it works by genetically introducing foreign DNA into plants to create genetically modified organisms, but not without risks. London Institute of Science in Society chief biologist, Dr. Mae-Wan Ho, explained the dangers because the process is imprecise. “It is uncontrollable and unreliable, and typically ends up damaging and scrambling the host genome, with entirely unpredictable consequences” that might unleash a deadly unrecallable “Andromeda Strain.” Research continued anyway amidst lies that risks were minimal and a promised future lay ahead. All that mattered were huge potential profits and geopolitical gain so let the good times roll and the chips fall where they may.

One project was to map the rice genome. It launched a 17 year effort to spread GMO rice around the world with Rockefeller Foundation money behind it. It spent millions funding 46 worldwide science labs. It also financed the training of hundreds of graduate students and developed an “elite fraternity” of top scientific researchers at Foundation-backed research institutes. It was a diabolical scheme aiming big – to control the staple food for 2.4 billion people and in the process destroy the biological diversity of over 140,000 developed varieties that can withstand droughts, pests and grow in every imaginable climate.

Asia was the prime target, and Engdahl explained the sinister tale of a Philippines-based Foundation-funded institute (IRRI). It had a gene bank with “every significant rice variety known” that comprised one-fifth of them all. IRRI let agribusiness giants illegally use the seeds for exclusive patented genetic modification so they could introduce them in markets and dominate them by requiring farmers be licensed and forced to pay annual royalty fees.

By 2000, a successful “Golden Rice” was developed that was beta-carotene (Vitamin A) enriched. It was marketed on the fraudulent claim that a daily bowl could prevent blindness and other Vitamin A deficiencies. It was a scam as other products are far better sources of this nutrient and to get enough of it from any type rice requires eating an impossible nine kilograms daily (about 20 pounds). Nonetheless, gene revolution backers were ready for their next move: “the consolidation of global control over humankind’s food supply” with a new tool to do it – the WTO. Corporate giants wrote its rules favoring them at the expense of developing nations shut out.

Unleashing GMO Seeds – A Revolution in World Food Production Begins

Argentina became the first “guinea pig” nation in a reckless experiment with untested and potentially hazardous new foods. No matter, potential profits are enormous so concerns for public safety and human health are ignored. Let the revolution begin in real time.

By the end of the 1980s, a global network of genetically-trained molecular biologists were ready to kick it off, Argentina was their first test laboratory, and it was hailed as a “Second Green Revolution.” Look what followed. From 1996 to 2004, worldwide GMO crop planting expanded to 167 million acres, a 40-fold increase using 25% of total worldwide arable land. An astonishing two-thirds of the acreage (106 million acres) was in the US. By 2004, Argentina was in second place with 34 million acres while production is expanding in Brazil, China, Canada, South Africa, Indonesia, India, the Philippines, Colombia, Honduras, Spain and Eastern Europe (Poland, Romania and Bulgaria). The revolution was on a roll and looks unstoppable.

Argentina was an easy mark when Carlos Menem became President. He’s a corporatist’s dream, a willing Washington Consensus subject, and he even let David Rockefeller’s New York and Washington friends draft his economic program with Chicago School dogma at its heart – privatizations, deregulation, local markets open to imports, and cuts in already reduced social services.

By the mid-1990s, Menem was “revolutioniz(ing) Argentina’s traditional productive agriculture” to one based on monoculture for global export. He took office in July, 1989. By 1991, Argentina was already a “secret experimental laboratory for developing genetically engineered crops” with its people unknowing human guinea pigs. In effect, the country’s agriculture was handed to Monsanto, Dow, DuPont and other GMO giants to exploit for profit with untested and potentially hazardous new products. Things would never be the same again.

In 1995, Monsanto introduced Roundup Ready (RR) soybeans with its special gene gun-inserted bacterium that allows the plant to survive being sprayed by the glyphosate herbicide, Roundup. GMO soybeans are thus protected from the same product used in Colombia to eradicate drugs that also harms legal crops and humans at the same time.

Foreign investors have large land holdings in Argentina, the late 1990s – early 2000s economic crisis made vast more amounts available, and bankrupted farmers had to give it up for pennies on the dollar. Corporate predators and Latifundista landholders took full advantage, but look what for.

After Monsanto’s Roundup Ready soybeans were licensed in 1996, “a once-productive national family farm-based agriculture system (was turned into) a neo-feudal state system dominated by a handful of powerful, wealthy” owners to exploit for profit. Menem went along. In less than a decade, he allowed the nation’s corn, wheat and cattle diversity to be replaced by corporate-controlled monoculture. It was a Faustian sellout, and it helped Monsanto’s stock price hit an all-time high near year end 2007.

Earlier decades of diversity and crop rotation preserved the country’s soil quality. That changed after soybean monoculture moved in with its heavy dependence on chemical fertilizers. Traditional Argentine crops vanished, and cattle were forced into cramped feedlots the way they are in the US. Engdahl quoted a leading country agro-ecologist predicting these practices will destroy the land in 50 years if they continue. Nothing suggests a stoppage, and by 2004, nearly half the nation’s crop land was for soybeans and over 90% of it solely for Monsanto’s Roundup Ready brand. Engdahl put it this way: “Argentina had become the world’s largest uncontrolled experimental laboratory for GMO” and its people unwitting lab rats.

Mechanized GMO soybean monoculture took over, the country’s dairy farms were reduced by half, and “hundreds of thousands of workers (were forced) off the land” into poverty. Monsanto was on a roll and used various exploitive schemes. Included were ploys to ignore Argentine law against collecting royalty payments. Smuggling Roundup soybean seeds illegally into Brazil, Paraguay, Bolivia and Uruguay also went on sub rosa. In addition, the company got Menem to allow it to collect “extended royalties” in 1999 even though Argentine law prohibited the practice.

Monsanto then pressured the government to recognize its “technology license fee.” A Technology Compensation Fund was established and managed by the Ministry of Agriculture. It forced farmers to pay a near-1% fee on GMO soybean sales. Monsanto and other GMO seed suppliers got the funds. By 2005, Brazil’s government relented. It legalized GMO seeds for the first time, and by 2006, the US, Argentina and Brazil accounted for over 81% of world soybean production. It “ensure(s) that practically every animal in the world fed soymeal (is) eating genetically engineered soybeans.” It also means everyone eating these animals does the same thing unwittingly.

Argentina experienced more fallout as well that threatens to spread. Its soybean monoculture affects the countryside hugely. Traditional farmers close to soybean ones are seriously harmed by aerial Roundup spraying. Their crops are destroyed as that’s how this herbicide works. It kills all plants without gene-modified resistance. It also kills animals with farmers reporting their chickens died and horses were gravely harmed. Humans are affected as well and show violent symptoms of nausea, diarrhea, vomiting and herbicide-inflicted skin lesions. Other reports claimed further fallout – animals born with severe organ deformities, deformed bananas and sweet potatoes, and lakes filled with dead fish. In addition, rural families said their children developed “grotesque blotches on their bodies.”

Forest lands were also damaged as vast acreage was cleared for soybean planting. Their loss “created an explosion of medical problems because Roundup is toxic, kills every non-GMO plant that grows and, it harms animals and humans as well that come in contact with it.

As for higher promised yields, results showed reduced harvests of between 5% and 15% compared with traditional soybean crops plus “vicious new weeds” that need up to triple the amount of spraying to destroy. By the time farmers learn this, it’s too late. By 2004, GMO soybean plantings spread across the country, they cost more to produce and yield less, and Engdahl summarized farmers’ plight: “A more perfect scheme of human bondage would be hard to imagine,” and it was even worse than that. Argentina was the first test case “in a global plan that was decades in the making and absolutely shocking and awesome in its scope.”

Iraq Gets American Seeds of Democracy

Democracy for Iraq meant erasing the “cradle of civilization” for unfettered free market capitalism. Iraq was conquered for its oil but also to make the country a giant free trade paradise. The scheme was diabolical, elaborate and ugly – blitzkrieg “shock and awe,” elaborate PsyOps, fear as a weapon, repressive occupation, mass detention and torture, and the fastest, most sweeping country remake in history. It happened in weeks, Iraq no longer exists, the country is a wasteland, its people are devastated, and a blank slate was created for unrestrained corporate pillage on a near- unimaginable scale.

Part of the scheme was for GMO agribusiness giants to have free reign over that part of the economy – to radically transform Iraq’s food production system into a model for GMO seeds and plants. One hundred swiftly implemented Bremer laws mandated it, but Iraqis had no say about them as the country is now governed out of Washington and its branch office inside the heavily-fortified Green Zone in the largest US embassy in the world by far.

Bremer laws imposed the harshest ever Chicago School-style “shock therapy” of the kind that devastated countries around the world since first introduced in Chile under Pinochet in 1973. The formula was familiar – mass firings of state employees in the hundreds of thousands; unrestricted imports with no tariffs, duties, inspections or taxes; deregulation; and the largest state liquidation sale and privatization plan since the Soviet Union collapsed.

Corporate taxes were lowered as well from 40% to a flat 15%, and foreign investors could own 100% of Iraqi assets other than oil. They could also repatriate all their profits, had no obligation to reinvest in the country and wouldn’t be taxed. They were further given 40 year leases, and the only Saddam era laws remaining were those restricting trade unions and collective bargaining. Foreign transnationals, mainly US ones, swooped in and devoured everything. Iraqis couldn’t compete, and the occupation laws assured it.

Consider Bremer Order 81. It covered patents, their duration and stated: “Farmers shall be prohibited from re-using seeds of protected varieties or any variety” the edict covered. It gave plant varieties patent holders absolute rights over farmers’ using their seeds for 20 years. They’d be genetically engineered, owned by transnationals, and Iraqi farmers using them had to sign an agreement stipulating they’ll pay a “technology fee” as well as an annual license fee.

Plant Variety Protection (PVP) was the core of this order. It made seed saving and reuse illegal. Even using “similar” seeds could result in severe fines and imprisonment. GMO seeds got protection to displace 10,000 years of developed plant varieties being sacrificed.

Iraq’s fertile valley between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers is ideal for crop planting. Since 8000 BC, farmers used it to develop “rich seeds of almost every variety of wheat used in the world today.” They were erased through a GMO modernization and industrialization scheme so agribusiness can get a foothold in the region and supply the world market. While Iraqis suffer and starve, GMO giants run the country’s agriculture for export. Iraqi farmers are now agribusiness serfs and are forced to grow products foreign to the native diet like wheat designed for pasta.

Bremer laws mandated it and are inviolable under Article 26 of the US-drafted constitution. It states that the Iraqi government is powerless to change laws a foreign occupier made. To assure it, US-sympathizers are in every ministry with those most trusted in key ones. Engdahl sums up the damage to agriculture: “The forced transformation of Iraq’s food production into patented GMO crops is one of the clearest examples of (how) Monsanto and other GMO giants are forcing (these) crops onto an unwilling or unknowing world population.” They’re infesting the planet with them one country at a time so it’s futile trying to undo the damage they cause.

Planting the “Garden of Earthly Delights”

On January 1, 1995, the WTO was officially established with powers to enforce its corporate-written laws on member states. US agribusiness was already dominant, but it now had a new unelected supranational body to advance its private agenda on a global scale. WTO is a “policeman” for global free trade and “a (predatory) battering ram for the trillion dollar annual world agribusiness” part of it for its giants. Its rules are written with teeth for “punitive leverage” to levy heavy financial and other penalties on rule violators. Under them, agriculture is a priority because American companies are dominant.

Cargill wrote the rules that Engdahl calls the “Cargill Plan.” They:

— ban all government farm programs and price supports worldwide (but wink and nod at massive US subsidies);

— prohibit countries from imposing import controls to defend their own agricultural production;

— ban agricultural export controls even in times of famine so Cargill can dominate world export grain trade; and

— forbid countries from restricting trade through food safety laws called trade barriers; this demand also opens world markets to unrestricted GMO food imports with no need to prove their safety.

The International Food and Agricultural Trade Policy Council lobby (IPC) worked with Cargill and US agribusiness to advance this agenda. Four so-called Group of Four QUAD countries took the lead – the US, Canada, Japan and EU. Meeting in secret, they set policy for all 134 WTO members that for agriculture was drafted by US agribusiness giants like Cargill, Monsanto, ADM and DuPont along with EU giants, Nestle and Unilever. They were designed to erase national laws and safeguards in favor of unrestricted free markets favoring Global North countries.

Through patents, GMO giants control staple crop seeds and need WTO leverage to force them on a skeptical world. It’s done through WTO’s Agreement on Agriculture (AoA) along with its Trade Related Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS). Until the advent of agribusiness, food production and its markets were local. That’s now changed with corporate giants in control and able to set prices by manipulating supply.

AoA rules were established to help. They also enforce agribusiness’ highest priority – “a free and integrated global market for its products.” Included are GMO ones the senior Bush administration ruled are “substantially equivalent” to ordinary seeds and crops and need no government regulation.

That provision is written into WTO rules under its “Sanitary and Phytosanitary Agreement (SPS). It states that national laws banning GMO products are “unfair trade practices” even when they endanger human health. Other WTO rules (called “Technical Barriers to Trade”) are in place as well. They prohibit GMO labeling so consumers don’t know what they’re eating and can’t avoid these potentially hazardous foods.

The 1996 Biosafety Protocol was drafted to solve this problem, and it should be in place for that purpose. Developing country demands, however, were “ambushed by the powerful organized government and agribusiness lobby.” It sabotaged talks and insisted biosafety measures be subordinate to WTO trade rules favoring developed states. As a result, talks collapsed, safety concerns are ignored, and the path was cleared for the unrestricted spread of GMO seeds worldwide.

Under WTO’s TRIPS rules, all member states must pass patent-protecting intellectual property laws that make knowledge property. That, in turn, “open(s) the floodgates” nearly everywhere for the proliferation of GMO seeds and foods, even in violation of national food safety laws.

GMO giants have powerful friends in government backing their agenda. George Bush is one of them, and in 2003 he made the proliferation of GMO seeds his top priority after the Iraq war. With that support, GMO companies are pushing things to the limit with a brazen example Engdahl gave involving the Texas biotech company, RiceTec.

It schemed to patent Basmati rice, the dietary staple across Asia for thousands of years. With IRRI collusion, the company stole the seeds, patented them under Rockefeller Foundation-crafted rules, and the 2001 Supreme Court decision in Ag Supply v. Pioneer Hi-Bred made it possible. It “enshrined the principle of allowing patents on plant forms and other forms of life in (this) groundbreaking case.” Under the ruling, GMO plant breeds can be patented, and US government agencies are complicit in helping agribusiness giants ensure nothing stops them from doing it.

As a result, the GMO monoculture onslaught threatens plant species diversity everywhere. With full Washington and WTO backing, major biotech companies are patenting every plant imaginable in GMO form. By the beginning of the new millennium, Engdahl referred to a “Gene Revolution (as a) monsoon force in world agriculture” with four dominant companies controlling GMOs and related agrichemical markets” – Monsanto, DuPont, Dow Agrisciences and Syngenta in Switzerland from the merger of the agriculture divisions of Novartis and AstraZeneca.

The “world’s number one” is Monsanto. The company was discussed in Part I of this review, and Engdahl quoted its chairman saying his goal is a global fusion of “three of the largest industries in the world – agriculture, food and health – that now operate (separately, but) changes….will lead to their integration.” That was over seven years ago. Now it’s happening.

Engdahl covered pertinent information on the industry that might otherwise have gone unnoticed – that the three US GMO giants have a long sordid association with the Pentagon supplying massively destructive chemicals like Agent Orange, napalm and others. They now want to be trusted with the most important things we ingest – our food and drugs in the face of strong evidence their GMO varieties harm human health and their history of public safety concern is atrocious.

Like it or not, they’re advancing their agenda, and a 2004 Rockefeller Foundation report shows it. GM crop production achieved nine consecutive double digit year increases since 1996. More than eight million farmers in 17 countries now plant them, over 90% in developing nations. Far and away, the US is the world’s leader “with aggressive Government promotion, absence of labeling, and the domination of US farm production.” Here, “genetically engineered crops (have) essentially taken over the American food chain.” In 2004, over 85% of soybeans were genetically modified, 45% of corn, and since animal feed is mainly from these crops “the entire meat production of the nation (and exports) has been fed on genetically modified animal feed.” What animals eat, so do humans.

It gets even worse. Wind and air proliferate GM seeds to adjacent fields, including organic ones that are now to some degree contaminated. Engdahl explained that “after just six years, an estimated 67% of all US farm acreage has been (irremedially) contaminated with genetically engineered seeds. The genie was out of the bottle” as nothing known to science can reverse this condition.

It renders the notion of pure organic impossible except from perhaps very isolated farms that comprise a small percent of the industry. Even so, organic crops are safer than chemically-treated ones and hugely preferable to any that are genetically modified. That said, as the Gene Revolution advances worldwide, the future of organic farming is imperiled to the horror of people like this writer dependent on them.

Consider further the way GMO giants gain market share with government and WTO backing. It’s also helped by imposing rigid licensing and technology agreements on farmers who must pay annual fees. They’re binding and enforced through Technology Use Agreements farmers have to sign, and by so doing, entrap themselves in a “new form of serfdom.” Each year, they must buy new seeds, and they’re forbidden to reuse any from previous years as was customary before GMO introductions. Failure to observe the agreements can result in severe legal damages or even imprisonment and possible loss of their land.

Complicit government agencies and clever marketing schemes aid the “Gene Revolution” through “lies and damn lies” that GMO crops have higher yields and can solve world hunger problems. The evidence proves otherwise. In addition, resistant “superweeds” develop over time, crop yields drop, farmers must use greater amounts of herbicides, they’re locked into high user fees, and they end up losing money. Bottom line – the case for “genetically engineered seeds for agriculture had been based on a citadel of scientific fraud and corporate lies.” This information is hidden from the public, and it’s too late once unwary farmers learn they’ve been had.

Besides that, Russian science showed GMOs harm unborn babies as over half the rat offsring fed a genetically modified soybean diet died in their first three weeks of life – six times the normal rate. Evidence was growing on GMO dangers, and the industry was alarmed. In 1999, it “required an extraordinary intervention by its patron saint, the Rockefeller Foundation,” to pull its fat out of the fire.

Population Control – Terminators, Traitors, Spermicidal Corn

Crucial to its strategy, GMO giants needed a “new technology which would allow them to sell seed that would not reproduce.” They developed one called GURTs (Genetic Use Restriction Technologies) that became known as “Terminator” seeds. The process is patented, it applies to all plant and seed species, and replanting them doesn’t work. They won’t grow. It’s the industry’s solution to controlling world food production and assuring themselves big profits as a result. What a discovery. Terminator corn, soybean and other seeds have been “genetically modified to ‘commit suicide’ after one harvest season” by a toxin-producing inbuilt gene.

A closely related technology is called T-GURT seeds, or second generation Terminators, nicknamed “Traitor.” The technology relies on controlling both plant fertility and its genetic characteristics with “an inducible gene promoter” called a “gene switch.” GMO pest and disease-resistant crops only work by using a specific chemical compound companies like Monsanto make. Farmers buying seeds illegally won’t get the compound to “turn on” the resistant gene. Traitor technology thus creates a captive new market for the GMO giants, and Traitor is cheaper to produce than Terminator seeds.

Combined, these two technologies give agribusiness giants unprecedented powers. “For the first time in history, it (lets) three or four private multinational seed companies….dictate terms to world farmers for their seed.” It’s a biological warfare tool almost “too good to believe” in the face of open citizen opposition the industry and US Department of Agriculture (USDA) aim to quash.

Engdahl quoted USDA spokesman Willard Phelps from a June, 1998 interview saying the agency wanted Terminator technology to be “widely licensed and made expeditiously available to many seed companies.” Hidden was the reason why – to introduce these seeds to the developing world as the prime Rockefeller Foundation strategy. Engdahl called it a “Trojan Horse for Western GMO seed giants to get control over Third World food supplies in areas with weak or non-existent patent laws.” It became an urgent Foundation priority to spread the seeds worldwide to irreversibly capture world markets. USDA fully backed the scheme.

That kind of muscle (along with WTO rules) is overwhelming. It’s the tactic used when the US departments of state and agriculture coordinate famine relief using genetically engineered US surplus commodities. Farmers getting GMO seeds aren’t told what they are, they plant them unwittingly for the next harvest, get hooked, and the proliferation isn’t restricted to Africa. Through coercion, bribery and other illegal tactics, the industry’s goal is to introduce them everywhere but especially in highly indebted developing states. In the case of Poland, it was in a country with some of the richest European soil that’s now spoiled by genetic contamination.

Consider how the scheme ties in with Rockefeller Foundation population control strategy. In 2001, it was aided when the privately-owned biotech company, Epicyte, announced it successfully developed the “ultimate GMO crop” – contraceptive corn. It was called a solution to world “over-population,” but news about it vanished after Biolex acquired the company.

One way or other, the Rockefeller Foundation aims to reduce population through human reproduction by spreading GMO seeds. It’s doing it cooperatively with the UN World Health Organization (WHO) by quietly funding its “reproductive health” program through the use of an innovative tetanus vaccine. Combined with hCG natural hormones, it’s an abortion agent preventing pregnancies, but women getting it aren’t told. Neither is anything said about the Pentagon viewing population reduction as a sophisticated form of “biological warfare” (to) solve world hunger.”

Avian Flu Panic and GMO Chickens

In 2005, George Bush duped the public into believing a so-called Avian (bird flu) epidemic threatened a pandemic if not addressed. The solution as always is turn to the private sector and reward his friends. In this case, he asked Congress to appropriate an emergency $1 billion taxpayer dollars for a drug Tamiflu. Unmentioned was a key fact. It was developed and patented by Gilead Science and, that prior to becoming Defense Secretary, Donald Rumsfeld was its chairman and still a major stockholder.

The scare combined with government funding and a rising stock price stood to make him a fortune just as Dick Cheney profited as Vice-President from his Halliburton ties. Engdahl asked: “Was the avian flu scare another Pentagon hoax” with an unknown aim? Based on known and suppressed past government actions, “a supposedly deadly” new flu strain “had to be treated with more than a little suspicion.”

It was being used to advance global agribusiness and poultry factory farm interests “along the model of Arkansas-based Tyson Foods.” Consider the facts. Factory farms are breeding grounds for potential disease proliferation because of their cramped, overcrowded conditions, but this was never mentioned as a threat. Instead, small family-run free-ranging chicken farmers were cited as culprits, especially in Asia, when, in fact, that notion is at least very unlikely.

Small farms like these are the safest, but an industry-government propaganda campaign claimed otherwise. The scheme is clear. Five multinational giants dominate US chicken meat production and processing – Tyson (the largest), Gold Kist, Pilgrim’s Pride, ConAgra Poultry and Perdue Farms. They produce chicken meat under “atrocious health and safety conditions.” According to the GAO, these plants had “one of the highest rates of injury and illness of any industry.”

Cited was exposure to “dangerous chemicals, blood, fecal matter, exacerbated by poor ventilation and often extreme temperatures….(In addition, chickens are tightly cramped and) prevented from moving or getting any exercise on factory farms (so they can) grow….much larger (and faster) than ever before.” Growth boosters are also used, they create health problems, and growing numbers of animal experts believe these farms, not small Asian ones, are the real source of dangerous new diseases like avian flu. That information is suppressed in the mainstream so the public is duped.

It’s so chicken processing giants can globalize world production with the avian flu scare “gift from heaven” to help them. If small Asian chicken farmers can be squeezed out, Tyson and the others can access the huge Asian poultry market. That’s their aim and removing competition their method with help from friends in high places.

Creating the first GMO animal population is also part of the scheme with the prospect of transforming world chickens into GMO birds. Engdahl put it this way: “By 2006, riding the fear of an avian flu human epidemic, the GMO or Gene Revolution players were clearly aiming to conquer the world’s most important source of meat protein, poultry.” But another scheme to dominate world food production also lay ahead. “Terminator was about to come into the control of the world’s largest GMO agribusiness seed giant.”

Genetic Armageddon: Terminator and Patents on Pigs

In 2007, Monsanto acquired Delta & Pine Land (D&PL)to complete its aborted 1999 takeover attempt. D&PL had global Terminator patent rights and successfully extended them on GURTs. The deal made Monsanto “the overwhelming monopolist of agricultural seeds of nearly every variety” that includes fruits and vegetables from the company’s acquisition of Seminis a year earlier. With that company, Monsanto is now first in vegetables and fruits, second in agronomic crops, and the world’s third largest agrochemical company. With D&PL, the company has absolute control over the majority of plant agricultural seeds as well. In addition, they’re getting into the genetic engineering and patenting of animal seeds.

In 2005, Monsanto applied to the WTO for international patent rights for its claimed genetic engineering of a means to identify pig genes derived from patented male swine semen. The company also wants patents and the right to collect license fees for particular farm animals and livestock herds. If granted, “Any pigs that would be produced using this reproductive technique would be covered by these patents.” Several techniques are being used and patented as fast as GMO lawyers can submit applications to lock up animal life as intellectual property.

Companies like Monsanto and Cargill have invested huge amounts to genetically modify animals for profit. They thus want patent and licensing rights to the results even though this represents a controversial goal to patent life itself. A 1980 Supreme Court decision in Diamond v. Chakrabarty, however, gave them an opening by ruling “anything under the sun that is made by man” is patentable. It paved the way for a landmark patent of the “Harvard mouse” that was genetically engineered to be susceptible to cancer.

Engdahl explained how four agribusiness giants used “stealth, system, and a well-supported campaign of lies and distortion” to progress toward Henry Kissinger’s ultimate goal – controlling oil to control nations and food to control people. The pursuit of both are ongoing with little public knowledge of how far advanced things are and how reckless the scheme is – to genetically engineer all plants and life forms and to control world population by culling its “unwanted” parts.

Afterward

A September, 2006 WTO tribunal ruled for the US and against the EU. In so doing, it threatens to open this important agricultural region to the “forced introduction (of) genetically-manipulated plants and food products.” It recommended the WTO Dispute Settlement Body (DSB) require the EU to conform with its obligations under WTO’s SPS Agreement that lets agribusiness ignore national laws and rights to protect public health and safety. Failure to comply can cost EU countries hundreds of millions of dollars in annual fines, so this issue is crucial to both sides.

At the time of Engdahl’s writing, it was unclear if the “GMO juggernaut would be stopped globally.” It’s still uncertain, but as of December, only nine biotech products are authorized for sale in the EU. So far, most US corn exports are blocked and trade in other products is hindered in spite of dozens of applications pending in the pipeline with their fate undecided.

Several EU countries, including France, Germany, Austria and Denmark, even ban some EU-approved biotech products to further cloud the outlook. Polls show why with European public opinion strongly opposed to GMO foods and ingredients with hostility levels in France as high as 89% and 79% wanting governments to ban them. This shows European consumers are far ahead of Americans and much better protected (so far) by their overall exclusion as well as having labeling requirements for those allowed to be sold. That provision is crucial as it empowers consumers to use or avoid eating these foods. If enough people abstain, food outlets won’t carry them.

Engdahl ends on a high note by observing how vulnerable GMO giants are to criticism. Thrusting untested products down consumer throats is “grounds for organizing a global ban or moratorium on them” if enough vocal opposition can be marshaled. Throughout his book, he sounds the alarm with reams of carefully documented facts on the industry, its products and goals. Converting world agriculture to GMOs, allowing agribusiness free reign over them, and combining that scheme with a diabolical population culling agenda adds up to solving world hunger through genocide and endangering the rest of us in the process.

So far, Washington and the industry are on a roll toward controlling oil and food. Hundreds of millions around the world stand opposed, but it’s unclear if that’s enough. Engdahl’s book is a wake-up call for every friend of the earth to understand issues this crucial can’t be left in the hands of unscrupulous business giants and their supportive friends in high places everywhere. The book has reams of ammunition against them. It needs to be thoroughly read and used. The stakes are much too high – human health and safety must never be compromised for profit.

Stephen Lendman is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization.
He lives in Chicago and can be reached at
lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. Also visit his blog site at www.sjlendman.blogspot.com

Click to order William Engdahl’s book:

Seeds of Destruction,
The Hidden Agenda of Genetic Manipulation


F. William Engdahl is a leading analyst of the New World Order, author of the best-selling book on oil and geopolitics,
A Century of War: Anglo-American Politics and the New World Order,’ His writings have been translated into more than a dozen languages.

Reviews of Engdahl’s Seeds of Destruction

What is so frightening about Engdahl’s vision of the world is that it is so real. Although our civilization has been built on humanistic ideals, in this new age of “free markets”, everything– science, commerce, agriculture and even seeds– have become weapons in the hands of a few global corporation barons and their political fellow travelers. To achieve world domination, they no longer rely on bayonet-wielding soldiers. All they need is to control food production.

(Dr. Arpad Pusztai, biochemist, formerly of the Rowett Research Institute Institute, Scotland)

If you want to learn about the socio-political agenda –why biotech corporations insist on spreading GMO seeds around the World– you should read this carefully researched book. You will learn how these corporations want to achieve control over all mankind, and why we must resist… (Marijan Jost, Professor of Genetics, Krizevci, Croatia)

The book reads like a murder mystery of an incredible dimension, in which four giant Anglo-American agribusiness conglomerates have no hesitation to use GMO to gain control over our very means of subsistence…

(Anton Moser, Professor of Biotechnology, Graz, Austria).


CLICK to order William F. Engdahl’s book directly from Global Research

Seeds of Destruction,
The Hidden Agenda of Genetic Manipulation

The CRG grants permission to cross-post original Global Research articles on community internet sites as long as the text & title are not modified. The source and the author’s copyright must be displayed. For publication of Global Research articles in print or other forms including commercial internet sites, contact: crgeditor@yahoo.com

www.globalresearch.ca contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available to our readers under the provisions of “fair use” in an effort to advance a better understanding of political, economic and social issues. The material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving it for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material for purposes other than “fair use” you must request permission from the copyright owner.

For media inquiries: crgeditor@yahoo.com
© Copyright Stephen Lendman, Global Research, 2008
The url address of this article is: www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=7849

see

“Seeds of Destruction, The Hidden Agenda of Genetic Manipulation” by Stephen Lendman (Part 1)

Agribusiness Giants seek to gain Worldwide Control over our Food Supply by Stephen Lendman (Part 2)

GMO Seeds: ‘MNCs Gaining Total Control Over Farming’ by Anil Netto

“Doomsday Seed Vault” in the Arctic by F. William Engdahl (GMO)

Kucinich Campaign files complaint with FCC about CNN Debate

Dandelion Salad

by Dennis Kucinich

CNN sets debate criteria 1% above Kucinich’s latest poll results

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Kucinich for President campaign filed a complaint with the Federal Communications Commission yesterday against CNN and its parent company, Time Warner, Inc., for arbitrarily establishing criteria for its scheduled Monday Presidential debate that will exclude the Democratic candidate from participation.

On Wednesday, the campaign was notified by CNN that its criteria included a showing of 5% or better in a national poll. In two polls completed earlier last week by CBS News/New York Times and by the Pew Research Center, Ohio Congressman Dennis Kucinich scored 4%.

“The CNN criteria specifically exclude the diverse and anti-war voice of Mr. Kucinich and his grass-roots supporters,” according to the complaint. “The exclusion of Mr. Kucinich undermines the purpose of the (Federal Communications) Act and is a blatant violation of the Act, including its equal time provisions.” Also, “Mr. Kucinich is a successful candidate because of his anti-war message and strong criticism of the American healthcare system, issues that are not championed by his presidential primary opponents. In these and other policy issues, his opponents share very similar policy platforms that differ from Mr. Kucinich.”

The filing also points out that Kucinich was invited to participate in the upcoming South Carolina debate by the Congressional Black Caucus, which is co-sponsoring the event. The invitation, which he accepted on May 20, stated, in part that Kucinich “will be guaranteed a rare opportunity to present your message to millions of voters unfiltered by any political organization or by any news organization.”

The complaint also argues that the Monday event “is not a true presidential primary debate without including all credible candidates. Instead, it is effectively an endorsement of the candidates selected by CNN” and is a breach of the federal requirement “to operate in the public interest and to afford reasonable opportunity for the discussion of conflicting views of issues of public importance.”

The campaign is asking the FCC to order CNN to allow Kucinich to participate.

***

After Downing Street

PHONE: 404-827-1500
EMAIL: http://www.cnn.com/feedback/cnntv

FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted material. Such material is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

see

Kucinich Vows to Fight for Changes to FCC Law

Dennis Kucinich: Soul Meets Body (video)

Dennis’ interview with WKOH

Open Letter To Leno, Maher & G.E. From Your Anti-Censorship “Disruptors”

Kucinich-Dennis

Dennis 4 President

Gulf of Hormuz Incident & Israeli/Palestine Update (video)

Dandelion Salad

briggsmedia

Gareth Porter of Inter Press News discusses the Iranian speedboat incident. Stephen Cohen of Israeli Policy Forum discusses the status of peace talks.

Added: January 19, 2008

see

How The Pentagon Planted a False Hormuz Story by Gareth Porter

Communications Breakdown in the Persian Gulf (video)

Iran

Kucinich Leads 45 Members In Opposing National Defense Authorization Act

Ask Congress to Investigate Pentagon Video of Iranian “Threat”

Kucinich demands Bush stop beating drums of war on Iran (video + transcript)

Kucinich: Evidence Undercuts Bush’s Rhetoric On Iran

Is Bush preparing the world for another USS Liberty? by Trevor Murphy

On Motherhood & Other Topics by Guadamour

GUADAMOUR

by Guadamour
Dandelion Salad
featured writer

Guadamour’s blog post
Jan. 19, 2008

On Motherhood & Other Topics

NOTE: I don’t feel in anyway qualified to write on this topic, however I do have a view and opinions. I wouldn’t be writing this blog if I had not made a few comments to a friend of mine. She suggested I write this, and she knows who she is, and I thank her for her support. The opinions are my own whether anyone agrees with them or not.

I was born in 1948 and at that time there were approximately 2 billion people on the planet. By 1970 there were over 3 billion people on the planet. Currently we are rapidly approaching 7 billion people. More than half the people currently living on the planet are under 30 years of age, and in the prime child bearing years. Thus the population of the world will rise exponentially. Ironically the population of the United States, Western Europe, Japan and a few other industrialized countries is aging rapidly, and they are worried about meeting labor demands and fulfilling social obligations.

The sexual revolution of the 1960’s and 70’s seemed to add fuel to the already exploding population. After the 1970’s it became socially acceptable for a single mother to raise her child or children. What does all this really have to do with motherhood, one might ask. By definition, every child has to have a mother because no one has yet come into this world without having a mother. The quality of the motherhood offered a child is what is truly important.

In many parts of the third world and in isolated instances in the first and second world girls in their early teens and even younger are giving birth to children whom they are not prepared to take proper care. This disadvantages the child, and when the child grows will much more likely be involved war or mired in poverty with little if any hope of advancing his or her situation. or possibly be involved in crime.

This is not what any mother wants for her child. As I was thinking about writing this blog early in the morning, I came across a pertinent quote by retiring UN Secretary General Kofi Annan. He said, “Discrimination against women of all ages deprives the world’s children–all of them, not just the half that are girls—of the chance to reach their potential.

‘Where men control the household, less money is spent on health care and food for the family, resulting in poorer health for the children.”

“THERE IS NO BETTER TOOL FOR DEVELOPMENT THAN THE EMPOWERMENT OF WOMEN.”

What the Secretary General is stating is that the mothers of the world hold the future of the world in their care, and he emphasizes food and health care, but I believe that proper motherhood involves a great deal more than that.

In my experience and travels around the world, the happiest, most content and successful people are always ones who have had loving and caring mothers. I have met people that couldn’t maintain a relationship, unable to express their love, because they felt that they had never received love from their mothers. I have also met people who struggle all their lives, never really succeeding, and when I’ve talked to a few of them, I discovered that their mothers were domineering and never let the child explore his or her potential. Still others, when anything goes wrong they go running to their mothers. Then there are those that blame all their problems on their mothers.

The balance of loving, nurturing, caring for and guiding a child is extremely difficult to navigate, but it is of utmost importance to the world. In the current situation of seemingly endless war, conflicts, droughts and famines, a properly loved and cared for child can save the world from unending turmoil. In general, if a child feels properly loved, is nurtured and has adequate food and healthcare, that child cannot but help and love others. I believe all mothers want this for their children, and it isn’t contingent upon religion, race or culture.

Motherhood is the most important phenomenon in the world because the mothers are guiding, nurturing and building the future of the world, and the governments and societies of the world have an obligation to meet the needs of their mothers. Meeting the needs of mothers and motherhood does not involve killing their children in wars and other mindless conflicts.

“Free Lunch: How the Wealthiest Americans Enrich Themselves at Govt Expense (& Stick You with the Bill)” (must-listen)

https://dandelionsalad.wordpress.com/

Democracy Now!
January 18, 2008

“Free Lunch: How the Wealthiest Americans Enrich Themselves at Government Expense (And Stick You with the Bill)”

Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist David Cay Johnston joins us to talk about his new book, “Free Lunch: How the Wealthiest Americans Enrich Themselves at Government Expense (And Stick You with the Bill).” Johnston reveals how government subsidies and new regulations have quietly funneled money from the poor and the middle class to the rich and politically connected. Continue reading

Possible flu pandemic: US government plans to treat sick people “like potential enemies” By Kevin Mitchell

Dandelion Salad

By Kevin Mitchell
WSWS
19 January 2008

The Bush administration’s emergency plan for a possible flu pandemic involves essentially police-state methods that have nothing to do with effectively combating the illness.

This was the finding of a report released by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) January 14 that criticized the government’s preparations for a pandemic. The study outlined how federal agencies have been adopting an increasingly heavy-handed approach toward what should be considered a public health problem.

The report was presented at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. followed by a panel discussion with three top experts: George Annas and Wendy K. Mariner of Boston University School of Public Health and Wendy E. Parmet of Northeastern Law School. Each condemned the government’s lack of preparedness on this critical health issue and explained how its insistence on treating everyone like a potential flu carrier was extremely counterproductive, to say the least.

The panel also discussed the fact that the current policies heavily emphasize the need for coerced vaccinations and military-enforced quarantines. “History shows that treating sick people like potential enemies only spurs them to avoid the authorities and exacerbates the spread of disease,” said Parmet.

continued…

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