With fewer than 200 workers, most of them part time, the Jeffrey Mine in Asbestos, Quebec, is barely operational anymore. However, if a group of international investors called Balcorp gets its way, the mine could soon be revived, digging many tons of asbestos out of the ground and exporting the hazardous mineral to developing Asian countries. The group plans to sell primarily to India, but also to Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Pakistan, and the Philippines.
Shortly after the invasion of Iraq in 2003, I interviewed Ray McGovern, one of an elite group of CIA officers who prepared then-president George W. Bush’s daily intelligence brief. At that time, McGovern was at the apex of the “national security” monolith that is American power and had retired with presidential plaudits. On the eve of the invasion, he and 45 other senior officers of the CIA and other intelligence agencies wrote to Bush that the “drumbeat for war” was based not on intelligence, but lies.
“It was 95 percent charade,” McGovern told me.
“How did they get away with it?” I asked.
The 1952 Bourgeois Democratic Revolution was launched by the Free Officers Movement of the armed forces against the corrupt and repressive monarchy of King Farouk, under whom Egypt had become the most important lever of control and domination of the Middle East by Western imperialism in general and US imperialism in particular, as well as Zionism. The success of that revolution ended the century and a half of Mohammad Ali Dynasty rule and resulted in the establishment of a republic in 1953.
Feb. 22, 2011
“Nobody goes to jail,” writes Matt Taibbi in the new issue of Rolling Stone magazine. “This is the mantra of the financial-crisis era, one that saw virtually every major bank and financial company on Wall Street embroiled in obscene criminal scandals that impoverished millions and collectively destroyed hundreds of billions, in fact, trillions of dollars of the world’s wealth.” Taibbi explains how the American people have been defrauded by Wall Street investors and how the financial crisis is connected to the situations in states such as Wisconsin and Ohio.
MATT TAIBBI: Governor Kasich, yeah, and he was intimately involved with selling—getting the state of Ohio’s pension fund to invest in Lehman Brothers and buy mortgage-backed securities. And of course they lost all that money. And this, broadly, was really what the mortgage bubble and the financial crisis was all about. It was essentially a gigantic criminal fraud scheme where all the banks were taking mismarked mortgage-backed securities, very, very dangerous, toxic subprime loans, they were chopping them up and then packaging them as AAA-rated investments, and then selling them to state pension funds, to insurance companies, to Chinese banks and Dutch banks and Icelandic banks. And, of course, these things were blowing up, and all those funds were going broke. But what they’re doing now is they’re blaming the people who were collecting these pensions—they’re blaming the workers, they’re blaming the firemen, they’re blaming the policemen—whereas, in reality, they were actually the victims of this fraud scheme. And the only reason that people aren’t angrier about this, I think, is because they don’t really understand what happened. If these were car companies that had sold a trillion dollars’ worth of defective cars to the citizens of the United States, there would be riots right now. But these were mortgage-backed securities, it’s complicated, people don’t understand it, and they’re only now, I think, beginning to realize that they were defrauded.