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How the CIA Trained the Jihadists — Part 2

August 31st, 2006 - by admin

Silvia Cattori / Voltairnet.org – 2006-08-31 23:39:33

http://www.voltairenet.org/article143050.html

How the CIA Recruited and Trained the Jihadists
— Part 2

Silvia Cattori / Voltairnet.org

In his latest book, How the Jihad Came to Europe, German journalist Jürgen Elsässer unravels the Jihadist thread. Muslim fighters recruited by the CIA to fight against the Soviets in Afghanistan were used successively in Yugoslavia and Chechnya, still supported by the CIA, but perhaps sometimes out of its control. Drawing on diverse sources — mainly Yugoslavian, Dutch, and German — he has reconstructed the development of Osama bin Laden and his lieutenants at the side of NATO in Bosnia-Herzegovinia. He is interviewed by Silvia Cattori, a Swiss journalist.

Silvia Cattori:It is hard to understand the goal that the western States pursue when they engage their services in criminal manipulations?

Jürgen Elsässer: This is not easy to say. Remember Kennedy’s murder. Who did it? It is certain that it was people from the CIA that supported the second killer, it is certain that Oswald was murdered by a man who had been mandated by the CIA. What is not clear is if these men recruited by the CIA acted on order of Johnson or Dulles, or if they were link to the milieu of extremist Cuban exiles, which means affiliated to the mafia. I don’t believe that Bush or Blairs are chiefs. I don’t believe in the theory of the big conspiracy. I believe that the secret services hire men who are ordered to carry out the dirty business; these agents act as they want. Perhaps you know that on September 11, 2001, someone tried to kill Bush. What does it mean? It is difficult to explain.

Silvia Cattori:Do you mean that Bush is, for example, himself hostage of the people who, inside the Pentagon, form a State within the state, one that also escapes the command of the American army?

Silvia Cattori:Are you thinking about people that are under the direct influence of characters such as Pearl, Wolfowitz, Feith? Do you think that it is they who, after the war of the Balkan, would have been the real backers of these attacks and that these attacks are not separate from each other, that there is a link between Madrid and London? Does it mean that the Americans are ready to ally with the devil to sow chaos everywhere under the pretext of this anti-Muslim, anti – Arabic war waged under the banner of terrorism? A fabricated terrorism?

Jürgen Elsässer: Yes, there is a duplicate government that escapes Bush’s control. It is the neoconservatives, such as Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Pearl, the people tied into the oil and the military industries,. The global chaos is in the interest of the military industry: when there is the chaos all over the world, one can sell weapons and oil for a bigger price.

Silvia Cattori:Youssef Asckar described this State within in the state very well, to which you give credit [1]. Isn’t Israel the first country interested by this strategy of chaos, therefore by the manipulation of terrorist attacks? Doesn’t the propaganda of the pro-Israeli lobby have the tendency to make us believe that Israel is threatened by Arabs fanatics?

Jürgen Elsässer: It is not certain that this strategy can serve the interests of Israel because, if things continue this way, the whole Middle East will be in flames, including Israel. They used the same process during the war in Bosnia. In order to demonize the Serbs, the western media invented stories of concentration camps and made photo montages that compared the Serbs to the Nazis. This propaganda aimed to win opinion over to the war against Serbia, but, with regard to the United States, it was not nourished necessarily by the Jewish lobby, but by the Christian and atheist strategists. These strategists play the “Jewish” card. That is my thesis. One sees it currently with the propaganda against Iran; strategists of the war play the “Jewish” card to impress people that have more morals than intelligence.

Silvia Cattori:The recent manipulations confirm, in part, your thesis: at the same moment where the United States wanted the Security Council to pass sanctions against Iran, a Canadian newspaper wrote that Iran wanted to force Iranian Jews to wear the equivalent of a yellow star [2]]]. But I refer to these openly pro-Israeli personalities that, in France for example, play an important role in the formation of opinion because they occupy some strategic positions in the media, and whose community allegiance psuyhes them to support the policies of Israel and the United States, even if it is criminal. Remember the active support brought to Izetbegovic in Bosnia by Bernard-Henri Lévy and Bernard Kouchner. As soon as Serbia was on the knees, they immediately turned their propaganda against Arabs and Moslems; this time it was to mobilize opinion in favor of the so-called “war of civilizations”. When they spoke of “concentration camps” to associate the Serbs with Hitler, didn’t they participate in manipulations of NATO?

Jürgen Elsässer: We watched the same phenomenon in Germany. The Jewish journalists that supported the war against Yugoslavia had access to the televised studios. But the journalists that were against, whether they were Jewish or not, were excluded from the debate. I think that the media and politicians use the Jewish voices for geostrategic stakes.

Silvia Cattori:So, as you see it, what happened in the Balkan was only the repetition of what had happened in Afghanistan, what followed was part of the same process. Do you think that our authorities know risks of the wars provoked by their intelligence agencies?

Jürgen Elsässer: My hope is that there is a reaction on behalf of the military in the United States. There are among them people who know very well that all these wars are not intelligent. They know that the United States is going to lose this war. In the American army, they are imperialistic but they are not crazy, they don’t agree with what is happening. But the neoconservatives are crazy, they want to wage the Third World War against all Arabs and all Moslems, just like Hitler who wanted to kill all Jews and to attack all other countries; the German generals had warned Hitler of all that he risked.

Silvia Cattori:Is your hope that a change occurs unexpectedly?

Jürgen Elsässer: To stop this madness I see possibility of change only among those forces that remained rational. The high command of the American army wrote a letter to Bush to say that it doesn’t want to participate in an attack against Iran with nuclear weapons. Maybe Bush will attack; but the consequences would be more serious than in the case of Iraq. The same thing happened with the Nazis: they attacked, they attacked, and one day there was Stalingrad and the beginning of the defeat. But this adventure cost the lives of 60 million human beings.

Silvia Cattori:Is that what motivated your effort while writing this book: to alert people’s consciences in order to avoid new disasters and new suffering? Moreover, that after Iraq it would be Iran’s turn?

Jürgen Elsässer: Yes. But characters like Bush don’t care about all of that. I am not completely pessimistic on Iran: one could see a repetition of the Paris, Berlin, Moscow axis. Our chancellor, who is normally a puppet of the United States, offered strategic cooperation with Russia, because Germany depends entirely on Russian oil and gas. It is a strong argument. Germans are imperialists, but they are not crazy.

Silvia Cattori:In the Balkans, was it not Germany that opened the door to the war?

Jürgen Elsässer: Yes, it is true. But, today, you see that Joschka Fischer and Madeleine Albright have sent an open letter to Bush to tell him not to attack Iran. Mrs. Albright specified that one cannot attack all the people that one doesn’t like. It is rational.

Silvia Cattori:Were you able to collect these elements that illustrate the actions of the intelligence agencies because, today, people, worried of the evolution of international politics, are beginning to speak?

Jürgen Elsässer: Yes. I depended a great deal on information from people that work in the belly of “the beast”.

Silvia Cattori:Everywhere in the world?

Jürgen Elsässer: I can only tell you that it is people from Western Europe. It is people that haven’t stopped using their heads.

Silvia Cattori:To obtain the proof of the manipulations surroundeding the “Gulf of Tonkin Incident”, the incident that permitted the United States to unleash the war against the Vietnamese people, it was necessary to wait a long time. Have things therefore changed today, permitting a response in time?

Jürgen Elsässer: There is a big difference between the situation in the 60’s and the one today. In the Federal Republic of Germany, they were, for example, at that time in favor of the war against Communists in Vietnam. The official version that said our republic was in danger of being attacked by Communists was shared by a big part of public opinion. What has changed is that, today, the majority of the population is against the war, without discussion.

Silvia Cattori:You rightly underline the extremist religious character of Bosnia-Herzegovina under Izetbegovic, but, whereas you doubt the support of Israel to this sort of draft of the emirate of the Talibans, don’t you overvalue the role of Iran and Saudi Arabia? Richard Perle was the principal political advisor to Izetbegovic. Didn’t the Iranians and the Saudis raise the ante on the question of Islam hoping to take the control of a Moslem regime that only took its orders from Tel Aviv and Washington? In fact, was Izetbegovic not an agent of Israel?

Jürgen Elsässer: The Mossad helped the Bosnian Serbians, they even provided them weapons. There is nothing that indicates that the Israeli government helped Izetbegovic. It was supported by Americans, and Clinton depended upon the Zionist lobby in the United States, but this lobby didn’t have the support of the Israeli government during the war of Bosnia.

Silvia Cattori:With regard to some of your sources, can one grant credit to the assertions of Yossef Bodanski, director of the Working Group on Terrorism and Non-Conventional war close to the American Senate?

Jürgen Elsässer: I don’t trust anybody. They claim that Bodansky has ties with sources in Mossad and it renders a number of his findings suspect. On the other hand, he brings to our knowledge a lot of interesting facts that contradict the official propaganda. In my book I show the contradictions within the dominant elites of the United States, and, in this respect, Bodansky, is very interesting.

Silvia Cattori:It says in your book: “Terrorism exists in Kosovo and Macedonia, but in its majority it is not controled by Ben Laden but by US intelligence”. Do you doubt the existence of Al Qaeda?

Jürgen Elsässer: Yes, as I wrote it in my book, it is propaganda manufactured by the west.

Silvia Cattori:One has a bit the impression that, to go to the end of its logic, your investigation is not finished. Certainly, Yugoslavia was a laboratory for the manufacture of the Islamic networks, and your book shows well that these networks serve the interests of the United States. However, you seem to believe in the existence of international Islamic networks who would have a popular base in the Moslem world, whereas at the same time your research demonstrates that these networks are only mercenaries of the United States and that they have never done anything for the Moslems?

Jürgen Elsässer: Look at the example of Hamas: in the beginning of the 80’s, it was fomented by Mossad to counter the influence of the PLO. But thereafter, Hamas developed its own popular base and, now, it is part of the resistance. But I bet that there are still foreign agents inside Hamas.

Silvia Cattori:You mentioned that the inspectors of the United Nations are infiltrated by spies from the United States. Could we have some precisions?

Jürgen Elsässer: Some blue helmets of the UNPROFOR in Bosnia transported weapons to destinations of the Mujahidines.

Silvia Cattori:When Peter Handke affirms that Serbs are not the only guilty party, that they are victims of the war of the Balkans, one banish it. Who is right in this business?

Jürgen Elsässer: On all sides – Serbs, Croatians, Moslems – the ordinary people have all lost. Moslems won the war in Bosnia with the help of Ben Laden and Clinton but, now, their country is occupied by NATO. They have less independence today than at the time of Yugoslavia.

Silvia Cattori:How does your research relate to that of Andreas Von Bülow and Thierry Meyssan?

Jurgen Elsässer: We share the same opinion on the events of September 11, 2001: we think that the official version is not true. All this combined research is very useful to be able to continue to deepen the reality of the facts. My specialty is to have made the link between wars of the Balkans and September 11, while Thierry Meyssan analyzed the attack on the Pentagon to demonstrate that it was due to a missile and not to a plane, and Von Bülow arrived at the conclusion that planes were guided by a beacon.

Silvia Cattori:To having put into question the official truth, Thierry Meyssan was discredited and blocked by the media. Are you going to escape that?

Jürgen Elsässer: There is also a blockage against my book. It is not possible for one author alone to break this blockage. However, it can’t prevent our theses from making their path. The public is not in agreement with what the media says: in spite of their blockage 35 to 40% of people don’t believe what media tells them. There is the example of Kennedy’s assassination: today, 90% of people don’t believe in the official version and think that Kennedy’s murder was an action of the CIA.

Silvia Cattori:Isn’t it dangerous to uncover the manipulations of States that use their intelligence services in criminal ways?

Jürgen Elsässer: I believe that the danger only comes when one sells more than 100 000 books. In Germany, in eleven months, my book has only sold 6 000 copies.

How the CIA Trained the Jihadists — Part 1

August 31st, 2006 - by admin

Silvia Cattori / Voltairenet.org – 2006-08-31 23:37:54

http://www.voltairenet.org/article143050.html

How the CIA Recruited and Trained the Jihadists — Part 1
Silvia Cattori / Voltairenet.org

In his latest book, How the Jihad Came to Europe, German journalist Jürgen Elsässer unravels the Jihadist thread. Muslim fighters recruited by the CIA to fight against the Soviets in Afghanistan were used successively in Yugoslavia and Chechnya, still supported by the CIA, but perhaps sometimes out of its control. Drawing on diverse sources — mainly Yugoslavian, Dutch, and German — he has reconstructed the development of Osama bin Laden and his lieutenants at the side of NATO in Bosnia-Herzegovinia. He is interviewed by Silvia Cattori, a Swiss journalist.

Silvia Cattori:Your investigation into the actions of the secret services makes a frightening report. We discover that since the 80’s the United States has invested billions of dollars to finance criminal activities and that by means of the CIA they are directly implicated in the attacks attributed to the Moslems. What is the contribution of your book?

Jurgen Elsässer: It is the only work that establishes the tie between wars in the Balkan of the 90’s and the attack of September 11, 2001. All the large attacks, in New York, in London, in Madrid, would never have taken place without the recruitment by the American and British secret services of these jihadists who have been blamed for the attacks. I bring a new light on the manipulations of the intelligence agencies. Other books than mine have noted the presence of Ossama Ben Laden in the Balkans. But their authors presented the Moslem fighters in the Balkan as enemies of the west. The information that I collected from multiple sources, demonstrate that these jihadists are puppets in the hands of the west and are not, as one pretends, enemies.

Silvia Cattori:In the case of the war in the Balkan, the manipulations of various States are clearly designated in your book. The United States supported Ben Laden whose work was to form the Mujahidines. How can anyone continue to ignore that these attempts that horrify public opinion would never have existed if these «terrorists» had not been driven and financed by the western intelligence services?

Jürgen Elsässer: Yes, indeed, it is the result of facts that one can observe. But one cannot say that the western intervention in ex – Yugoslavia had for objective to prepare attack of September 11. To be precise: these attacks are a consequence of western politics of the 90’s because NATO put these jihadists in place in the Balkans and collaborated with them. The Moslem militants who have been designated the persons responsible for the attacks of September 11 were part of this network.

Silvia Cattori:According to you, what was the interest of the United States and Germany to set the people of the Balkans one against the other?

Jürgen Elsässer: The west had a common interest to destroy Yugoslavia, to dismember it, because, after the end of the soviet bloc, it would have been a model of the intelligent combination of capitalist and socialist elements. But the west wanted to impose the neoliberal model on all countries.

Silvia Cattori:Is not Europe itself imprudently committed to a war manipulated by the neoconservatives?

Jürgen Elsässer: It is difficult to say. I believe that in the 90’s, the politics of the United States was inspired by their victory against Soviets in Afghanistan. It was the model that they wanted to apply in Balkans. If, during those years, the economy of the United States had not fallen into depression, maybe the more realistic politicians, such as Kissinger, could have kept control of American politics. I think that the coincidence between the economic depression and the aggressiveness of the neoconservative school determined what happened.

Silvia Cattori:Do you think that a leader like Blair, for example, once embarked in the neoconservative project, has become a hostage to a certain point?

Jürgen Elsässer: I don’t know the position of Blair enough well. It is easier to see what goes on in the United States. One can see that Bush is the hostage of those around him. And, as he is not very intelligent, he is not able to take decisions and must follow ideas of his entourage. It is clear that his father was against the attack on Iraq in 2003.

Silvia Cattori:Wasn’t the first Gulf war part of a plan aiming to trigger other wars thereafter?

Jürgen Elsässer: No, there was no tie with the war in Iraq in 1991. There were two phases. Until the end of the Clinton period, the politics of the United States were imperialistic, but at the same time, pragmatic. They chased the Soviets out of Afghanistan. They defeated Iraq in 1991. Their war stopped once Kuwait was free. Then they attacked Bosnia and Yugoslavia; but it occurred stage by stage. Everything went out of control after September 11.

Silvia Cattori:The neoconservatives don’t count for anything?

Jürgen Elsässer: The neoconservatives, grouped around Pearl, had written a document one year before September 11, according to which America had need of a catalyzing event similar to the attack on Pearl Harbor. September 11 was this catalyzing event. I believe that people around Pearl wished for the attacks of September 11.

Silvia Cattori:What was the objective pursued by the United States in attacking Serbia? Was it merely about, as is indicated in your book, the US getting itself installed in a strategic region situated on a transit line for the oil and the gas of central Asia? Or did the alliance of the United States with the Moslem fighters directed by Izetbegovic have a second objective: to create a Moslem extremism at the doors of Europe in order to make use of it in the setting of terrorist manipulations? And, if yes, towards what goal?

Jürgen Elsässer: The United States wanted, as did Austria at the end of the 19th century in Bosnia, to create a “European” Islam to weaken the Islamic states in the Middle East, meaning, at that time, the Ottoman empire, and today, Iran and the Arab states. The neoconservatives had other plans again: to construct a clandestine network of “fundamentalist” puppets to do the dirty work against “old” Europe.

Silvia Cattori:The result, a terrifying civil war. How could Europe have participated in the destruction of Yugoslavia, which appeared as an example of the perfectly successful cohabitation between ethnic groups? By making the Serbians the guilty party, didn’t Europe destroy a country that was one of the major constructions of the postwar era? On what legitimacy did Europe base its intervention?

Jürgen Elsässer: First, in the beginning of the 90’s, Germany led the attack based upon the principles of the self-determination of ethnic groups: in other words, Hitler’s old ruse against Czechoslovakia and Poland in 1938/39. Then, the United States took the relay and praised “human rights”, an obvious swindle.

Silvia Cattori:In your investigation Israel is never mentioned. Have you not minimized the importance of pro-Israeli neoconservatives inside the Pentagon, who serve interests of Israel more that those of the United States?

Jürgen Elsässer: There are Israelis who collaborated with the neoconservatives; it is a fact. But I am not sure of the role played by Israel in this business. Sharon was against NATO support for the Albanians of Kosovo. And, in 1998, he expressed his worry over the idea that NATO support the setting up of pro-Islamic elements in the Balkan. I also believe that he was not favorable to this war the following year.

Silvia Cattori:Don’t you see ties between the Israeli secret services and the attacks of September 11, 2001?

Jürgen Elsässer: There are ties, but I didn’t analyze the character of these ties. For example, immediately after September 11, a certain number of Israeli agents were arrested in the United States. They were present in places where the attacks were prepared. There are analysts who say this is proof that Israel was directly implicated in these attacks. But it could also mean something else. It could be that these agents were watching what happened, that they were aware that the American secret services supported these “terrorists” in the preparation of these attacks, but that they kept their knowledge to use it at the appropriate moment, and to be able to use it as blackmail when the moment came: “If you don’t increase your support for Israel, we are going to hand over this information to the media”. There is even a third possibility: that these Israeli spies wanted to warn about the attacks but failed. At the moment, we only know that these types were there and that they were arrested. Supplementary investigations are necessary.

Silvia Cattori:Do these ties put in evidence that the attacks of September 11, 2001 were part of a plan conceived a long time before?

Jürgen Elsässer: I am not certain that a plan had been established for a long time. It could be that people such as Richard Perle improvise a lot and use criminal elements that they put in place but that they don’t permanently control. As, at the time of Kennedy’s murder, it is clear that the CIA was implicated, but one doesn’t know if it had been planned at the top, at Langley [the headquarters of the CIA], or if it was conceived among the most violent Cuban exiles working for the CIA, the headquarters of the CIA limiting themselves to tolerating it.

Silvia Cattori:If tomorrow these characters grouped around Pearl were removed, would that stop the anti-Muslim war strategy of the United States and the manipulations that justify it?

Jürgen Elsässer: It stops when they lose a war.

Silvia Cattori:The war, didn’t they lose it in Iraq?

Jürgen Elsässer: The war will only be lost when they leave the country, as in Vietnam.

Silvia Cattori:These Moslems who, like Mohammed Atta, were just ordinary citizens before being enlisted by the CIA, how could they be driven to such terrifying actions, without knowing that they were being manipulated by intelligence agents of the opposite camp?

Jürgen Elsässer: There are some youth that can be turned into fanatics and manipulated very easily by intelligence services. High-placed characters are not unaware of what happens and know by who they are hired.

Silvia Cattori:Ben Laden, for example, did he know that he served the interests of the United States?

Jürgen Elsässer: I didn’t study his case. I studied the case of Al Zawahiri, Ben Laden’s right arm, who was the chief of operations in the Balkans. In the beginning of the 90’s, he traveled all through the United States with an agent of the US Special Command to collect money for the Jihad; this man knew that he participated in this collection of money as an activity that was supported by the United States.

Silvia Cattori:All of this is very troubling. You bring the proof that that attacks that have occurred since 1996 (attacks in the subway of Paris), would never have been possible if the war in the Balkan had not taken place. And you impute these attacks, that left thousands of victims, to western intelligence services. Has opinion in West therefore been deceived by governments that have embarked on terrorist actions?

Jürgen Elsässer: The terrorist network that the American and British secret services formed during the civil war in Bosnia and later in Kosovo provided a reservoir of militants that we find implicated later in the attacks in New York, Madrid, London.

Silvia Cattori:How did this happen concretely?

Jürgen Elsässer: Once the war was finished in Afghanistan, Osama Ben Laden recruited these jihadist militants. It was his work. It was he that trained them, partially with the support of the CIA, and put them in place in Bosnia. The Americans tolerated the connection between the President Izetbegovic and Ben Laden. Two years later, in 1994, the Americans began to send weapons, in a common clandestine operation with Iran. After the treaty of Dayton, in November 1995, the CIA and the Pentagon recruited best of the jihadists that had fought in Bosnia.

Silvia Cattori:How does it happen that these Moslems got into the hands of services that served ideological interests opposed to theirs?

Jürgen Elsässer: I analyzed testimonies given by some jihadists interrogated by the German judges. They said that after the treaty of Dayton, which stipulated that all foreign ex-fighters had to leave the country, they didn’t have any more money and had nowhere to go. As for those that could remain in Bosnia, because they had been provided with Bosnian passports, they were without work and without money. The day when the recruiters came and rang at their doors and proposed to pay them 3000 dollars a month to serve in the Bosnian army, they didn’t know that they were recruited and paid by emissaries of the CIA to serve the United States.

Silvia Cattori:After, when they were sent to prepare the attacks in London in July 2005, for example, did they not become aware that they were in the hands of western intelligence agents who manipulated them?

Jürgen Elsässer: It is not clear that it was really the young Moslems from the suburbs of London that committed the attacks, as the police claim. There are other indications according to which the bombs were fixed under the trains. It is possible the bombs were attached under the trains without these young men knowing about it. In that case it is not sure that the young Moslems, incriminated by the investigation, committed these attempts.

• Continued in Part 2

How the CIA Trained the Jihadists — Part 2

August 31st, 2006 - by admin

Silvia Cattori / Voltairnet.org – 2006-08-31 23:36:02

http://www.voltairenet.org/article143050.html

How the CIA Recruited and Trained the Jihadists — Part 2
Silvia Cattori / Voltairnet.org

In his latest book, How the Jihad Came to Europe, German journalist Jürgen Elsässer unravels the Jihadist thread. Muslim fighters recruited by the CIA to fight against the Soviets in Afghanistan were used successively in Yugoslavia and Chechnya, still supported by the CIA, but perhaps sometimes out of its control. Drawing on diverse sources — mainly Yugoslavian, Dutch, and German — he has reconstructed the development of Osama bin Laden and his lieutenants at the side of NATO in Bosnia-Herzegovinia. He is interviewed by Silvia Cattori, a Swiss journalist.

Silvia Cattori:It is hard to understand the goal that the western States pursue when they engage their services in criminal manipulations?

Jürgen Elsässer: This is not easy to say. Remember Kennedy’s murder. Who did it? It is certain that it was people from the CIA that supported the second killer, it is certain that Oswald was murdered by a man who had been mandated by the CIA.

What is not clear is if these men recruited by the CIA acted on order of Johnson or Dulles, or if they were link to the milieu of extremist Cuban exiles, which means affiliated to the mafia.

I don’t believe that Bush or Blairs are chiefs. I don’t believe in the theory of the big conspiracy. I believe that the secret services hire men who are ordered to carry out the dirty business; these agents act as they want. Perhaps you know that on September 11, 2001, someone tried to kill Bush. What does it mean? It is difficult to explain.

Silvia Cattori:Do you mean that Bush is, for example, himself hostage of the people who, inside the Pentagon, form a State within the state, one that also escapes the command of the American army?

Silvia Cattori:Are you thinking about people that are under the direct influence of characters such as Pearl, Wolfowitz, Feith? Do you think that it is they who, after the war of the Balkan, would have been the real backers of these attacks and that these attacks are not separate from each other, that there is a link between Madrid and London? Does it mean that the Americans are ready to ally with the devil to sow chaos everywhere under the pretext of this anti-Muslim, anti – Arabic war waged under the banner of terrorism? A fabricated terrorism?

Jürgen Elsässer: Yes, there is a duplicate government that escapes Bush’s control. It is the neoconservatives, such as Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Pearl, the people tied into the oil and the military industries,. The global chaos is in the interest of the military industry: when there is the chaos all over the world, one can sell weapons and oil for a bigger price.

Silvia Cattori:Youssef Asckar described this State within in the state very well, to which you give credit [1]. Isn’t Israel the first country interested by this strategy of chaos, therefore by the manipulation of terrorist attacks? Doesn’t the propaganda of the pro-Israeli lobby have the tendency to make us believe that Israel is threatened by Arabs fanatics?

Jürgen Elsässer: It is not certain that this strategy can serve the interests of Israel because, if things continue this way, the whole Middle East will be in flames, including Israel. They used the same process during the war in Bosnia. In order to demonize the Serbs, the western media invented stories of concentration camps and made photo montages that compared the Serbs to the Nazis. This propaganda aimed to win opinion over to the war against Serbia, but, with regard to the United States, it was not nourished necessarily by the Jewish lobby, but by the Christian and atheist strategists. These strategists play the “Jewish” card. That is my thesis. One sees it currently with the propaganda against Iran; strategists of the war play the “Jewish” card to impress people that have more morals than intelligence.

Silvia Cattori:The recent manipulations confirm, in part, your thesis: at the same moment where the United States wanted the Security Council to pass sanctions against Iran, a Canadian newspaper wrote that Iran wanted to force Iranian Jews to wear the equivalent of a yellow star [2]]]. But I refer to these openly pro-Israeli personalities that, in France for example, play an important role in the formation of opinion because they occupy some strategic positions in the media, and whose community allegiance psuyhes them to support the policies of Israel and the United States, even if it is criminal. Remember the active support brought to Izetbegovic in Bosnia by Bernard-Henri Lévy and Bernard Kouchner. As soon as Serbia was on the knees, they immediately turned their propaganda against Arabs and Moslems; this time it was to mobilize opinion in favor of the so-called “war of civilizations”. When they spoke of “concentration camps” to associate the Serbs with Hitler, didn’t they participate in manipulations of NATO?

Jürgen Elsässer: We watched the same phenomenon in Germany. The Jewish journalists that supported the war against Yugoslavia had access to the televised studios. But the journalists that were against, whether they were Jewish or not, were excluded from the debate. I think that the media and politicians use the Jewish voices for geostrategic stakes.

Silvia Cattori:So, as you see it, what happened in the Balkan was only the repetition of what had happened in Afghanistan, what followed was part of the same process. Do you think that our authorities know risks of the wars provoked by their intelligence agencies?

Jürgen Elsässer: My hope is that there is a reaction on behalf of the military in the United States. There are among them people who know very well that all these wars are not intelligent. They know that the United States is going to lose this war. In the American army, they are imperialistic but they are not crazy, they don’t agree with what is happening. But the neoconservatives are crazy, they want to wage the Third World War against all Arabs and all Moslems, just like Hitler who wanted to kill all Jews and to attack all other countries; the German generals had warned Hitler of all that he risked.

Silvia Cattori:Is your hope that a change occurs unexpectedly?

Jürgen Elsässer: To stop this madness I see possibility of change only among those forces that remained rational. The high command of the American army wrote a letter to Bush to say that it doesn’t want to participate in an attack against Iran with nuclear weapons. Maybe Bush will attack; but the consequences would be more serious than in the case of Iraq. The same thing happened with the Nazis: they attacked, they attacked, and one day there was Stalingrad and the beginning of the defeat. But this adventure cost the lives of 60 million human beings.

Silvia Cattori:Is that what motivated your effort while writing this book: to alert people’s consciences in order to avoid new disasters and new suffering? Moreover, that after Iraq it would be Iran’s turn?

Jürgen Elsässer: Yes. But characters like Bush don’t care about all of that. I am not completely pessimistic on Iran: one could see a repetition of the Paris, Berlin, Moscow axis. Our chancellor, who is normally a puppet of the United States, offered strategic cooperation with Russia, because Germany depends entirely on Russian oil and gas. It is a strong argument. Germans are imperialists, but they are not crazy.

Silvia Cattori:In the Balkans, was it not Germany that opened the door to the war?

Jürgen Elsässer: Yes, it is true. But, today, you see that Joschka Fischer and Madeleine Albright have sent an open letter to Bush to tell him not to attack Iran. Mrs. Albright specified that one cannot attack all the people that one doesn’t like. It is rational.

Silvia Cattori:Were you able to collect these elements that illustrate the actions of the intelligence agencies because, today, people, worried of the evolution of international politics, are beginning to speak?

Jürgen Elsässer: Yes. I depended a great deal on information from people that work in the belly of “the beast”.

Silvia Cattori:Everywhere in the world?

Jürgen Elsässer: I can only tell you that it is people from Western Europe. It is people that haven’t stopped using their heads.

Silvia Cattori:To obtain the proof of the manipulations surroundeding the “Gulf of Tonkin Incident”, the incident that permitted the United States to unleash the war against the Vietnamese people, it was necessary to wait a long time. Have things therefore changed today, permitting a response in time?

Jürgen Elsässer: There is a big difference between the situation in the 60’s and the one today. In the Federal Republic of Germany, they were, for example, at that time in favor of the war against Communists in Vietnam. The official version that said our republic was in danger of being attacked by Communists was shared by a big part of public opinion. What has changed is that, today, the majority of the population is against the war, without discussion.

Silvia Cattori:You rightly underline the extremist religious character of Bosnia-Herzegovina under Izetbegovic, but, whereas you doubt the support of Israel to this sort of draft of the emirate of the Talibans, don’t you overvalue the role of Iran and Saudi Arabia? Richard Perle was the principal political advisor to Izetbegovic. Didn’t the Iranians and the Saudis raise the ante on the question of Islam hoping to take the control of a Moslem regime that only took its orders from Tel Aviv and Washington? In fact, was Izetbegovic not an agent of Israel?

Jürgen Elsässer: The Mossad helped the Bosnian Serbians, they even provided them weapons. There is nothing that indicates that the Israeli government helped Izetbegovic. It was supported by Americans, and Clinton depended upon the Zionist lobby in the United States, but this lobby didn’t have the support of the Israeli government during the war of Bosnia.

Silvia Cattori:With regard to some of your sources, can one grant credit to the assertions of Yossef Bodanski, director of the Working Group on Terrorism and Non-Conventional war close to the American Senate?

Jürgen Elsässer: I don’t trust anybody. They claim that Bodansky has ties with sources in Mossad and it renders a number of his findings suspect. On the other hand, he brings to our knowledge a lot of interesting facts that contradict the official propaganda. In my book I show the contradictions within the dominant elites of the United States, and, in this respect, Bodansky, is very interesting.

Silvia Cattori:It says in your book: “Terrorism exists in Kosovo and Macedonia, but in its majority it is not controled by Ben Laden but by US intelligence”. Do you doubt the existence of Al Qaeda?

Jürgen Elsässer: Yes, as I wrote it in my book, it is propaganda manufactured by the west.

Silvia Cattori:One has a bit the impression that, to go to the end of its logic, your investigation is not finished. Certainly, Yugoslavia was a laboratory for the manufacture of the Islamic networks, and your book shows well that these networks serve the interests of the United States. However, you seem to believe in the existence of international Islamic networks who would have a popular base in the Moslem world, whereas at the same time your research demonstrates that these networks are only mercenaries of the United States and that they have never done anything for the Moslems?

Jürgen Elsässer: Look at the example of Hamas: in the beginning of the 80’s, it was fomented by Mossad to counter the influence of the PLO. But thereafter, Hamas developed its own popular base and, now, it is part of the resistance. But I bet that there are still foreign agents inside Hamas.

Silvia Cattori:You mentioned that the inspectors of the United Nations are infiltrated by spies from the United States. Could we have some precisions?

Jürgen Elsässer: Some blue helmets of the UNPROFOR in Bosnia transported weapons to destinations of the Mujahidines.

Silvia Cattori:When Peter Handke affirms that Serbs are not the only guilty party, that they are victims of the war of the Balkans, one banish it. Who is right in this business?

Jürgen Elsässer: On all sides – Serbs, Croatians, Moslems – the ordinary people have all lost. Moslems won the war in Bosnia with the help of Ben Laden and Clinton but, now, their country is occupied by NATO. They have less independence today than at the time of Yugoslavia.

Silvia Cattori:How does your research relate to that of Andreas Von Bülow and Thierry Meyssan?

Jurgen Elsässer: We share the same opinion on the events of September 11, 2001: we think that the official version is not true. All this combined research is very useful to be able to continue to deepen the reality of the facts. My specialty is to have made the link between wars of the Balkans and September 11, while Thierry Meyssan analyzed the attack on the Pentagon to demonstrate that it was due to a missile and not to a plane, and Von Bülow arrived at the conclusion that planes were guided by a beacon.

Silvia Cattori:To having put into question the official truth, Thierry Meyssan was discredited and blocked by the media. Are you going to escape that?

Jürgen Elsässer: There is also a blockage against my book. It is not possible for one author alone to break this blockage. However, it can’t prevent our theses from making their path. The public is not in agreement with what the media says: in spite of their blockage 35 to 40% of people don’t believe what media tells them. There is the example of Kennedy’s assassination: today, 90% of people don’t believe in the official version and think that Kennedy’s murder was an action of the CIA.

Silvia Cattori:Isn’t it dangerous to uncover the manipulations of States that use their intelligence services in criminal ways?

Jürgen Elsässer: I believe that the danger only comes when one sells more than 100 000 books. In Germany, in eleven months, my book has only sold 6 000 copies.

New Weapons Cover-up Revealed

August 31st, 2006 - by admin

Marian Wilkinson / Sydney Morning Herald – 2006-08-31 23:29:03

http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/weapons-coverup-revealed/2006/08/30/1156816970606.html

SYDNEY, Australia (August 31, 2006) — The Foreign Affairs Minister, Alexander Downer, issued instructions to suppress a damning letter about the hunt for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq after the war, a former senior diplomat says.

Dr John Gee, an expert on chemical weapons, worked with the US-led weapons hunter, the Iraq Survey Group, after the war and wrote the critical six-page letter when he decided to resign in March 2004.

In it, he warned the Federal Government the hunt was, “fundamentally flawed” and there was a “reluctance on the part of many here and in Washington to face the facts” that Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction.

Dr Gee recorded in an email soon after that “Downer has issued instructions it [my letter] is not to be distributed to anyone”. He wrote to a colleague in the Iraq Survey Group that a senior official in the Office of National Assessments, the Prime Minister’s intelligence advisory agency, had told him about Mr Downer’s instructions.

In another email, Dr Gee said the head of the Defence Department, Ric Smith, told him the department did not receive a copy of the letter even though Dr Gee was working in Iraq under contract to it. Dr Gee said senior defence officials told him the Department of Foreign Affairs “had not passed the letter on to Defence”.

Last night, a spokesman for Mr Downer said the minister “did not recall” receiving Dr Gee’s letter but said he would check. But he described as “a conspiracy theory” material showing that the letter had not been given to the head of the Defence Department. “I have heard a lot of conspiracy theories over the years, but I have not heard that one before.”

However, documents given to the Herald, including Dr Gee’s resignation letter and his emails to another senior weapons inspector, Rod Barton, reveal serious efforts to contain his findings.

Mr Downer has previously admitted that he was briefed personally by Dr Gee on the expert’s return from Iraq. But Mr Downer has never revealed the contents of that briefing. From the emails, it appears Mr Downer received the damning findings months before he and the Prime Minister, John Howard, accepted that no weapons of mass destruction would be found in Iraq.

One month after his briefing with Dr Gee, Mr Downer met the US head of the Iraq Survey Group, Dr Charles Duelfer. At their press conference, Mr Downer insisted the weapons hunt in Iraq “was still a work in progress” and he could not draw conclusions.

But Dr Gee’s emails reveal he briefed every senior level of the Government, including the Prime Minister’s office, Defence and Mr Downer’s Iraq Task Force, upon his return from Baghdad. They also indicate Mr Downer knew of his letter. The letter stated: “I now believe that there are no WMD in Iraq and that while the ISG has found a number of research activities . it has found no evidence so far on ongoing WMD programs of the type I had assumed would be there.”

Summing up his difficulties in Baghdad, Dr Gee wrote: “I have concluded that the process here is fundamentally flawed .”

He wrote that the Iraq Survey Group was “run by the CIA to protect the CIA”.

According to one email, the defence chief, Mr Smith, on hearing the briefing, said: “So we’ve got a problem.” Mr Smith told him “the only way to deal with bad news is to deal with it promptly and get it out of the way”.

Despite this, when Dr Gee tried to hand defence officials a copy of his letter, they declined to take it.

Yesterday Mr Barton, who also resigned from the hunt, told the Herald that Mr Downer and Mr Howard should have raised his and Dr Gee’s complaints about the Iraq Survey Group with the US.

“When the two senior Australians quit, and make it plain why they quit, because the process was corrupt, I think the least the Government could do was to go and talk to the Americans and ask what was going on here”.

Posted in accordance with Title 17, US Code, for noncommercial, educational purposes.

Thousands Protest Bush across Salt Lake City

August 31st, 2006 - by admin

Brock Vergakis and Debbie Hummel / The Associated Press – 2006-08-31 23:23:29

http://www.heraldextra.com/content/view/191830/3/

SALT LAKE CITY (August 31, 2006) — Thousands of demonstrators gathered at City Hall on Wednesday in protest of President Bush’s policies — one day before he [spoke] to the American Legion’s national convention here.

Led by Salt Lake City Mayor Rocky Anderson, protesters marched from City Hall to the federal building to present a symbolic indictment against Bush, Congress and the president’s administration, alleging such “crimes” as failure to uphold the Constitution, abuse of power and failure to promote the general welfare of Americans.

“Our children and later generations will pay the price of the lies, the violence, the cruelty, the incompetence and the inhumanity of the Bush administration and the lackey Congress that has so cowardly abrogated its responsibility and authority under our checks-and-balances system of government,” Anderson said.

The protests came a day after two senior members of the Republican administration, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, addressed Legionnaires here.Rumsfeld likened critics of the US war strategy to those who tried to appease the Nazis.

Rumsfeld and Rice both emphasized that America is safer because it is fighting terrorists in Iraq rather than at home as the nation approaches the fifth anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks.

Most of Anderson’s 35-minute speech focused on criticizing the Bush administration for its initial invasion of Iraq and did not address what the administration’s current policy should be, only insisting that Bush begin telling the truth.

The crowd frequently chanted “Rocky” as it held posters that said among other things: “Iraq: Another Vietnam”, “Stop Israeli Terrorism” and “We protest because we’re patriotic.”

Anderson and protest organizers had come under fire from Republicans for protesting during Bush’s visit, with Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, apologizing to the Legion for the protests. The state Republican Party also ran radio advertisements encouraging Utah residents to leave messages with the mayor expressing their displeasure.

“A patriot does not tell people who are intensely concerned about their country to just sit down and be quiet; to refrain from speaking out in the name of politeness or for the sake of being a good host; to show slavish, blind obedience and deference to a dishonest, warmongering, human-rights violating president,” said Anderson.

Many protesters also called Bush a racist and advocated that the country abandon capitalism in favor of socialism.

But the focus was on the war in Iraq.

Carl Brown, 60, held a sign saying “Army veterans against the war.”

“People who oppose the war and are demonstrating shouldn’t be looked down on as weirdos and wackos and unpatriotic,” Brown said. The certified public accountant said he thinks troops should gradually come home over the next six months to a year.

As throngs of protesters marched down State Street, the main thoroughfare through the Salt Lake valley, many cars honked their horns in support and crowds gathered on sidewalks to cheer the protesters on.

But Kim Watson of West Jordan followed protesters with a bull horn saying Anderson is a liar and that America is doing the right thing in Iraq.

“It’s about protecting our way of life for future generations so my kid doesn’t have to worry about going into a Pizza Hut one day and worry about being blown up like they do in Israel,” she said.

Several blocks away at Salt Lake City’s Liberty Park, a “Freedom Rally” was held. There, the crowd numbering in the hundreds, many of them Legionnaires, were rallying in support of US troops.

Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff spoke to those gathered, saying he felt he had to speak out against what Anderson was doing blocks away at the anti-war protest.

Shurtleff said it was disrespectful for Anderson to be speaking out against the war on the same day a Marine from Salt Lake was being buried. A funeral was Wednesday for Cpl. Adam A. Galvez, 21, who was killed in Iraq on Aug. 20.

“Your right to raise your fist in protest stops at the mahogany casket (of Galvez),” Shurtleff said. “Rocky, your protests in search of national recognition will leave you destitute and hungry.”

Wednesday’s day of protest included a total of six permitted rallies in the city. Most gatherings were designed to express support for American troops or opposition the Iraq war. This story appeared in The Daily Herald on page A1.

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Date: Thu, 31 Aug 2006 09:57:33 -0700 To: Laura X From: jeremy frankel Subject: American Legion clashes with Salt Lake City’s anti-war mayor; mayor organizes protest

url: http://news.bostonherald.com/national/view.bg?articleid=155202&format=text

American Legion clashes with Salt Lake City’s anti-war mayor; mayor organizes protest By Associated Press Wednesday, August 30, 2006 – Updated: 04:50 PM EST

SALT LAKE CITY – The American Legion opened its national convention in Salt Lake City with high hopes the gathering would help “unite America” behind the war in Iraq. Instead, the veterans have found themselves in a fight with the city’s anti-war mayor. Mayor Rocky Anderson, a Democrat in a city that is considered liberal by heavily Republican Utah’s standards, has accused the Bush administration of lying about the rationale for war. He has called President Bush a “complete disaster.” And on Wednesday, he organized a big protest rally a few blocks from the Salt Palace Convention Center, just hours before Bush’s arrival here for an address to the American Legion. “No more God-is-on-our-side religious nonsense,” Anderson said at the rally, absorbing waves of cheers and applause from the thousands of protesters as he called Bush a “dishonest, war-mongering, human-rights violating president.” The American Legion was so offended by Anderson’s protest plans that it refused to extend the customary invitation to the host city’s mayor to deliver the welcoming address. “Rocky ought to sit behind his desk and leave the rest of the world alone. I wouldn’t dream of doing things like this,” said Legionnaire Lynn Beckstead, 71, of West Valley City. “If you don’t like Bush, fine, but respect the office. This is a very conservative state, sweet and friendly. That’s not sweet.” Salt Lake County Mayor Peter Corroon, who is also a Democrat but has said little about the war, was mildly booed Tuesday when he gave the welcoming speech, apparently because some Legionnaires thought he was Anderson. Anderson seems to savor the controversy, even inviting peace activist Cindy Sheehan to Salt Lake City for the protest. She dropped out, citing health reasons. When some Legionnaires said convention attendance would drop because of the mayor, Anderson said it was “very strange” that free speech would discourage people. At least 12,000 veterans are at the convention. Inside the Salt Palace this week, the stage has been dominated by the Bush administration’s most senior and powerful members. Speaking to a friendly audience, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice defended their war policies Tuesday, and the president will give a speech on Thursday. Rumsfeld said the world faces “a new type of fascism” and likened critics of the Bush administration’s war strategy to those who tried to appease the Nazis in the 1930s. “Can we truly afford to believe that somehow, some way, vicious extremists can be appeased?” he asked. The Legion went on record in 2005 as saying it “fully supports” Bush in the “global war on terrorism.” The Veterans of Foreign Wars, which is meeting in Reno, Nev., this week, has a similar stance. Together they have 5 million members. The Legion has no anti-war speakers at its convention and no nationally prominent Democrats. Rep. Lane Evans, an Illinois Democrat who voted against the war in 2002 but is known for his work on behalf of veterans, was supposed to appear Wednesday but canceled, citing health reasons. “We’re not going to invite Cindy Sheehan or Rocky Anderson to speak to our convention. We’re trying to unite America,” said Legion National Commander Thomas Bock, 59, of Aurora, Colo., who has a son in the Air Force. He said he has a “real problem” with people who claim to support the troops but oppose the war. “What we don’t want to do is open our stage for public debate,” Bock said. “It’s our convention. We have common beliefs. Our membership has voted unanimously to stand behind our troops.” Some Legionnaires said they would welcome other voices. “You’d be an idiot to just listen to one side,” said Luis Diaz, 54, a Navy veteran from San Leandro, Calif. He said it is a “misuse of US troops” to be in Iraq after learning there were no weapons of mass destruction. Others said the convention should not be turned into a stage for diverse political voices. “We get the other side in the daily press,” said Bernard Olson, 72, a Legionnaire from Northfield, Wis.

© Copyright 2006 Associated Press. All rights reserved.

Posted in accordance with Title 17, US Code, for noncommercial, educational purposes.

Reclaiming the Issues: Islamic Or Republican Fascism?

August 30th, 2006 - by admin

Thom Hartmann / Common Dreams – 2006-08-30 23:49:18

http://www.commondreams.org/views06/0828-23.htm

(August 28, 2006) — In the years since George W. Bush first used 9/11 as his own “Reichstag fire” to gut the Constitution and enhance the power and wealth of his corporate cronies, many across the political spectrum have accused him and his Republican support group of being fascists.

On the right,The John Birch Society’s website editor recently opined of the Bush Administration’s warrantless wiretap program: “This is to say that from the administration’s perspective, the president is, in effect, our living constitution. This is, in a specific and unmistakable sense, fascist.”

On the left, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. specifically indicts the Bush administration for fascistic behavior in his book Crimes Against Nature: How George W. Bush and his Corporate Pals Are Plundering the Country and Hijacking Our Democracy.

Genuine American fascists are on the run, and part of their survival strategy is to redefine the term “fascism” so it can’t be applied to them any more. Most recently, George W. Bush said: “This nation is at war with Islamic fascists who will use any means to destroy those of us who love freedom, to hurt our nation.”

In fact, the Islamic fundamentalists who apparently perpetrated 9/11 and other crimes in Spain and the United Kingdom are advocating a fundamentalist theocracy, not fascism.

But theocracy — the merging of religion and government — is also on the plate for the new American fascists (just as it was for Hitler, who based the Nazi death cult on a “new Christianity” that would bring “a thousand years of peace”), so they don’t want to use that term, either.

While the Republicans promote the term “Islamo-fascism,” the rest of the world is pushing back, as the BBC noted in an article by Richard Allen Greene (“Bush’s Language Angers US Muslims” — 12 August 2006):
“Security expert Daniel Benjamin of the Center for Strategic and International Studies agreed that the term [Islamic fascists] was meaningless.

“‘There is no sense in which jihadists embrace fascist ideology as it was developed by Mussolini or anyone else who was associated with the term,’ he said. ‘This is an epithet, a way of arousing strong emotion and tarnishing one’s opponent, but it doesn’t tell us anything about the content of their beliefs.'”

Their beliefs are, quite simply, that governments of the world should be subservient to religion, a view shared by a small but significant part of today’s Republican party. But that is not fascism — the fascists in the US want to exploit the fundamentalist theocrats to achieve their own fascistic goals.

Vice President of the United States Henry Wallace was the first to clearly and accurately point out who the real American fascists are, and what they’re up to.

In early 1944 the New York Times asked Vice President Wallace to, as Wallace noted, “write a piece answering the following questions: What is a fascist? How many fascists have we? How dangerous are they?”

Vice President Wallace’s answers to those questions were published in The New York Times on April 9, 1944, at the height of the war against the Axis powers of Germany and Japan:

“The really dangerous American fascists,” Wallace wrote, “are not those who are hooked up directly or indirectly with the Axis. The FBI has its finger on those. The dangerous American fascist is the man who wants to do in the United States in an American way what Hitler did in Germany in a Prussian way.

The American fascist would prefer not to use violence. His method is to poison the channels of public information. With a fascist the problem is never how best to present the truth to the public but how best to use the news to deceive the public into giving the fascist and his group more money or more power.”

In this, Vice President Wallace was using the classic definition of the word “fascist” – the definition Mussolini had in mind when he claimed to have invented the word. (It was actually Italian philosopher Giovanni Gentile who wrote the entry in the Encyclopedia Italiana that said: “Fascism should more appropriately be called corporatism because it is a merger of state and corporate power.” Mussolini, however, affixed his name to the entry, and claimed credit for it.)

As the 1983 American Heritage Dictionary noted, fascism is: “A system of government that exercises a dictatorship of the extreme right, typically through the merging of state and business leadership, together with belligerent nationalism.” (The US dictionary definition has gotten somewhat squishier since then, as all the larger dictionary companies have been bought up by multinational corporations.)

Mussolini was quite straightforward about all this. In a 1923 pamphlet titled “The Doctrine of Fascism” he wrote, “If classical liberalism spells individualism, Fascism spells government.” But not a government of, by, and for We The People – instead, it would be a government of, by, and for the most powerful corporate interests in the nation.

In 1938, Mussolini brought his vision of fascism into full reality when he dissolved Parliament and replaced it with the “Camera dei Fasci e delle Corporazioni” — the Chamber of the Fascist Corporations. Corporations were still privately owned, but now instead of having to sneak their money to folks like John Boehner and covertly write legislation, they were openly in charge of the government.

Vice President Wallace bluntly laid out his concern about the same happening here in America in his 1944 Times article:

” If we define an American fascist as one who in case of conflict puts money and power ahead of human beings, then there are undoubtedly several million fascists in the United States. There are probably several hundred thousand if we narrow the definition to include only those who in their search for money and power are ruthless and deceitful. … They are patriotic in time of war because it is to their interest to be so, but in time of peace they follow power and the dollar wherever they may lead.”

Nonetheless, at that time there were few corporate heads who had run for political office, and, in Wallace’s view, most politicians still felt it was their obligation to represent We The People instead of corporate cartels. The real problem would come, he believed, when the media was concentrated in only a few hands:

“American fascism will not be really dangerous,” he added in the next paragraph, “until there is a purposeful coalition among the cartelists, the deliberate poisoners of public information…”

Noting that, “Fascism is a worldwide disease,” Wallace further suggested that fascism’s “greatest threat to the United States will come after the war” and will manifest “within the United States itself.”

In Sinclair Lewis’s 1935 novel “It Can’t Happen Here,” a conservative southern politician is helped to the presidency by a nationally syndicated “conservative” radio talk show host. The politician — Buzz Windrip — runs his campaign on family values, the flag, and patriotism. Windrip and the talk show host portray advocates of traditional American democracy as anti-American.

When Windrip becomes President, he opens a Guantanamo-style detention center, and the viewpoint character of the book, Vermont newspaper editor Doremus Jessup, flees to Canada to avoid prosecution under new “patriotic” laws that make it illegal to criticize the President. As Lewis noted in his novel:

“The President, with something of his former good-humor [said]: ‘There are two [political] parties, the Corporate and those who don’t belong to any party at all, and so, to use a common phrase, are just out of luck!’ The idea of the Corporate or Corporative State, Secretary [of State] Sarason had more or less taken from Italy.” And, President “Windrip’s partisans called themselves the Corporatists, or, familiarly, the ‘Corpos,’ which nickname was generally used.”

Lewis, the first American writer to win a Nobel Prize, was world famous by 1944, as was his book “It Can’t Happen Here.” And several well-known and powerful Americans, including Prescott Bush, had lost businesses in the early 1940s because of charges by Roosevelt that they were doing business with Hitler. These events all, no doubt, colored Vice President Wallace’s thinking when he wrote in The New York Times:

“Still another danger is represented by those who, paying lip service to democracy and the common welfare, in their insatiable greed for money and the power which money gives, do not hesitate surreptitiously to evade the laws designed to safeguard the public from monopolistic extortion. American fascists of this stamp were clandestinely aligned with their German counterparts before the war, and are even now preparing to resume where they left off, after ‘the present unpleasantness’ ceases.”

Thus, the rich get richer (and more powerful) on the backs of the poor and the middle class, giant corporate behemoths wipe out small and middle sized businesses, and a corporate iron fist is seizing control of our government itself. As I detail in my new book “Screwed: The Undeclared War Against The Middle Class,” the primary beneficiaries of this new fascism are the corporatists, while the once-outspoken middle class of the 1950s-1980s is systematically being replaced by a silent serf-class of the working poor.

As Wallace wrote, some in big business “are willing to jeopardize the structure of American liberty to gain some temporary advantage.” He added, “Monopolists who fear competition and who distrust democracy because it stands for equal opportunity would like to secure their position against small and energetic enterprise [companies]. In an effort to eliminate the possibility of any rival growing up, some monopolists would sacrifice democracy itself.”

But American fascists who would want former CEOs as President, Vice President, House Majority Whip, and Senate Majority Leader, and write legislation with corporate interests in mind, don’t generally talk to We The People about their real agenda, or the harm it does to small businesses and working people. Instead, as Hitler did with the trade union leaders and the Jews, they point to a “them” to pin with blame and distract people from the harms of their economic policies.

In a comment prescient of George W. Bush’s recent suggestion that civilization itself is at risk because of gays or Muslims, Wallace continued:

” The symptoms of fascist thinking are colored by environment and adapted to immediate circumstances. But always and everywhere they can be identified by their appeal to prejudice and by the desire to play upon the fears and vanities of different groups in order to gain power. It is no coincidence that the growth of modern tyrants has in every case been heralded by the growth of prejudice. It may be shocking to some people in this country to realize that, without meaning to do so, they hold views in common with Hitler when they preach discrimination…”

But even at this, Wallace noted, American fascists would have to lie to the people in order to gain power. And, because they were in bed with the nation’s largest corporations – who could gain control of newspapers and broadcast media — they could promote their lies with ease.

“The American fascists are most easily recognized by their deliberate perversion of truth and fact,” Wallace wrote. “Their newspapers and propaganda carefully cultivate every fissure of disunity, every crack in the common front against fascism. They use every opportunity to impugn democracy.”

In his strongest indictment of the tide of fascism the Vice President of the United States saw rising in America, he added:

“They claim to be super-patriots, but they would destroy every liberty guaranteed by the Constitution. They demand free enterprise, but are the spokesmen for monopoly and vested interest. Their final objective toward which all their deceit is directed is to capture political power so that, using the power of the state and the power of the market simultaneously, they may keep the common man in eternal subjection.”

Finally, Wallace said, “The myth of fascist efficiency has deluded many people. … Democracy, to crush fascism internally, must…develop the ability to keep people fully employed and at the same time balance the budget. It must put human beings first and dollars second. It must appeal to reason and decency and not to violence and deceit. We must not tolerate oppressive government or industrial oligarchy in the form of monopolies and cartels.”

This liberal vision of an egalitarian America in which very large businesses and media monopolies are broken up under the 1890 Sherman Anti-Trust Act (which Reagan stopped enforcing, leading to the mergers & acquisitions frenzy that continues to this day) was the driving vision of the New Deal (and of “Trust Buster” Teddy Roosevelt a generation earlier).

As Wallace’s President, Franklin D. Roosevelt, said when he accepted his party’s renomination in 1936 in Philadelphia:

“…Out of this modern civilization, economic royalists [have] carved new dynasties…. It was natural and perhaps human that the privileged princes of these new economic dynasties, thirsting for power, reached out for control over government itself. They created a new despotism and wrapped it in the robes of legal sanction…. And as a result the average man once more confronts the problem that faced the Minute Man….”

Speaking indirectly of the fascists that Wallace would directly name almost a decade later, Roosevelt brought the issue to its core:

“These economic royalists complain that we seek to overthrow the institutions of America. What they really complain of is that we seek to take away their power.”
But, he thundered in that speech:

“Our allegiance to American institutions requires the overthrow of this kind of power!”
In 2006, we again stand at the same crossroad Roosevelt and Wallace confronted during the Great Depression and World War II. Fascism is again rising in America, this time calling itself “compassionate conservatism,” and “the free market” in a “flat” world.

The RNC’s behavior today eerily parallels the day in 1936 when Roosevelt said:
“In vain they seek to hide behind the flag and the Constitution. In their blindness they forget what the flag and the Constitution stand for.”

President Roosevelt and Vice President Wallace’s warnings have come full circle. Thus it’s now critical that we reclaim the word “fascist” to describe current-day Republican policies, support Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

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DU: the Wrong Thing in Afghanistan

August 30th, 2006 - by admin

Michael Clarke / Coastal Post – 2006-08-30 23:40:08

http://www.uruknet.info/?colonna=m&p=26240&l=x&size=1&hd=0

Depleted Uranium: The Definitive Moral Paradox

CANADA (August 29, 2006) — It is Canada Day evening, and I can barely hear the whistles, booms and bangs of the fireworks. It sounds a bit like distant bombs exploding, reminding me of the incredible moral paradox our federal government’s aggressive military role in Afghanistan has created for all Canadians.

Our government, military, newspapers, television and radio media are efficiently dispersing the official sound bytes: “our troops in Afghanistan have the moral authority”; “Canada is doing the right thing”; “it’s a noble mission”; and, “we are just spreading freedom and democracy”.

But, they are not telling us that there is something else we are spreading around Afghanistan that any truly moral person would instinctively consider immoral and evil. It is something very real, but some governments refuse to recognize it even exists.

Despite their duplicity, it certainly brings to the table a supreme criminal culpability that historians may someday benchmark as the definitive moral paradox marking the failure of Western democracies to resist the rise of global corporate fascism.

After the Taleban resistance fighters’ ambush in May killed Capt. Nichola Goddard, Canadian troops called in a US B-1 Lancer stealth bomber which dropped a 500-pound bomb on a nearby residential compound, killing an estimated 15 to 20 people. According to the US Air Force, that was just one of nearly 2,000 air strikes that were conducted in Afghanistan between March and May 2006.

Tragically, every air strike uses bombs and missiles that are encased and ballasted with depleted uranium (DU) which aerosolizes upon impact, instantaneously being released into the atmosphere as insoluble ceramic uranium oxide nanoparticles.

Its gaseous characteristics allow DU to remain suspended in the air and be distributed around the earth as a radioactive component of atmospheric dust, contaminating the environment and indiscriminately killing, maiming and causing disease in all living things wherever rain, snow and moisture remove it from the atmosphere.

Nuclear experts agree that DU is a weapon for killing lots of people that keeps on killing forever. It meets the US. government’s own definitions of weapons of mass destruction. And there is no way to ever clean it up.

An estimated 900 tons of DU was released in the initial 2001 invasion of Afghanistan. The approximately 2,000 air strikes this spring could easily have released another 250 tons of DU into the air and onto the ground, water and crops.

According to the White House website a total of 24,000 bombs were used in the first year of operations in Afghanistan, which would suggest a minimum of 3,000 tons of DU was aerosolized in only the first 12 months of conflict. There is a lot of deadly radioactive DU around there.

According to one nuclear expert, Leuren Moret, the United States and its willing accomplices like Canada have effectively staged a nuclear war in Afghanistan by using dirty bombs and missiles that “slip the nukes under the wire”. As quickly as the DU aerosols are produced they will permanently contaminate vast areas and slowly destroy the genetic future of populations throughout the region.

The permanent radioactive contamination and environmental devastation is unprecedented, resulting in huge increases in cancer and birth defects which will increase over time due to chronic exposure, increasing internal levels of radiation from DU dust and permanent genetic effects passed on to future generations. Of course, DU weapons have also been used in Yugoslavia and the Iraq wars with the same devastating consequences.

Studies to monitor the Afghanis have been carried out by the Uranium Medical Research Center, which has sent several field teams to Afghanistan since 2002 to check the contamination and health conditions around specific locations that are known to have been bombed.

Approximately 30% of those interviewed in the affected areas displayed symptoms of radiation sickness, including congenital problems in newborns. In Kabul those who were exposed to US-British “precision bombing” showed extreme signs of contamination consistent with uranium exposure. In Nangarhar every person donating urine specimens tested positive for uranium contamination.

The researchers were stunned by the astoundingly high levels of widespread contamination. Their report warned, “The UMRC field team was shocked by the breadth of public health impacts coincident with the bombing. Without exception, at every bombsite investigated, people are ill. A significant portion of the civilian population presents symptoms consistent with internal contamination by uranium.”

Using the same calculation method that the UK Atomic Energy Authority employed in their 1990 projection of potential DU consequences in Iraq, the estimated 250 tons of DU from the 2,000 recent air strikes carried out in Afghanistan from March to May 2006 could result in as many as 2,500,000 cancers within the next ten years. The bomb dropped near Capt. Goddard produced 250 pounds of DU that could cause as many as 1,250 cases of cancer in that village within the next ten years.

But, the bombing in the initial 2001 invasion could cause as many as 9,000,000 additional cancers within ten years. These horrible estimates tend to support Leuren Moret’s contention that this has been a genocidal plan from the start; this was not a war in Afghanistan, but a war against Afghanistan. And Iraq, and Yugoslavia.

However, the laws of war prohibit the use of weapons that have deadly and inhumane effects beyond the field of battle, or remain active or cause harm after hostilities cease. The military use of DU weapons violates international humanitarian law (Hague & Geneva), violates the principles of international environmental protection and contradicts the right to life established by the UN Subcommittee on Human Rights.

The UN Human Rights Commission determined a decade ago that DU is a weapon of mass destruction that should never be used. These rulings mean that the use of DU is intrinsically immoral as well as illegal.

Of course, there will always be wags who insist that DU is harmless so there really is no problem. Robert Jensen, a professor of journalism at UT Austin, recently delivered a speech at the Brisbane (Australia) Social Forum titled “The Threats to Sustainable Democracy” in which he said, “Éthere is no power so convinced of its own benevolence as the United States.

The culture is delusional in its commitment to this mythology, which is why today one can find on the other side of the world peasant farmers with no formal education who understand better the nature of US power than many faculty members at elite US universities.”

Leuren Moret dramatically proved his point in an article published in World Affairs – the Journal of International Issues (July 2004) when she wrote, “Éeven uneducated Afghanis understand the impact these [DU] weapons have had on their children and on future generations:

“After the Americans destroyed our village and killed many of us, we also lost our houses and have nothing to eat. However, we would have endured these miseries and even accepted them, if the Americans had not sentenced us all to death. When I saw my deformed grandson, I realized that my hopes of the future have vanished for good, different from the hopelessness of the Russian barbarism, even though at that time I lost my older son Shafiqullah.

This time, however, I know we are part of the invisible genocide brought on us by America, a silent death from which I know we will not escape.” (Jooma Khan of Laghman province, March 2003)

Genocide? The word fits too perfectly! The statistical potential for numbers of DU cancer deaths in Afghanistan with the passage of time easily surpasses the Holocaust victim total and sets new upper limits for satanic crimes against humanity. When government tells us that we are in Afghanistan with full moral authority they are being disingenuous, because genocide can only spring from immoral authority.

Dr. K. Yagasaki has calculated that the US has used more DU since 1991 than the atomicity equivalent of 400,000 Nagasaki bombs, and it has been spread all around the planet. Despite the fact that Depleted Uranium weaponry will eventually annihilate all species on earth, our “leaders” continue to deploy it with full knowledge of its destructive potential, even as they say there is no DU problem. Throughout the history of this world there has been no greater atrocity against the people and the planet.

Dr. Bartell coined the term omnicide to reflect DU’s supreme immorality. Jooma Khan will never believe that the foreign troops occupying his province have any moral authority. It is no coincidence that a major international Pew poll last month showed that the majority of Muslim society around the world believes Western countries are immoral.

So, here’s the moral paradox for all Canadians: How can the Conservatives, the military, the corporate media and the regressive Liberals possibly be correct when they tell us that Canada’s mission in Afghanistan is noble and moral if our soldiers initiate the deployment of illegal nuclear DU weapons that deliver horrific radioactive genocide and cause the permanent destruction of the environment?

The paradox is instantly resolved. Simply by requesting air strikes with illegal radioactive DU weaponry Canadian soldiers are, by definition, perpetrating immoral crimes against humanity. Therefore, it is logically impossible that our mission in Afghanistan is the “right thing to do”.

To the contrary, Canada has become a state sponsor of terror just like America which is the very wrong thing to do, and the DU problem we have become involved with due to our unwise military commitments to the US and NATO implicate us in terrorist acts much worse than 9/11.

The Muslim world is astute. Western society is immoral. Our supposedly superior democratic institutions have allowed the DU atrocities to be perpetrated globally free from any threat of international prosecution. In fact, the Canadian government has suppressed those who would attempt to bring war crime charges of torture against the United States, a far lesser crime in comparison.

Take action now. Demand an international public enquiry about DU war crimes and demand that Canada bring our troops home immediately and stop expanding the killing fields.

But, be wary, because democracy around the world has had a complete breakdown. The Depleted Uranium insanity is the definitive moral paradox that marks the triumph of global corporate fascism over the world’s weak and easily corrupted democratic institutions.

Those who understand that fundamental morality must begin with serving humanity and stopping the destruction of Gaia must rise up in resistance. And they will call us terrorists even though we strive for the highest moral standards and the greatest good and, ironically, respect the Nuremburg Principles.

As Robert Jensen warned the Brisbane Social Forum, “The world is at risk.”

Posted in accordance with Title 17,US Code for noncommercial, educational purposes.
www.coastalpost.com/06/09/03.html

Bush Goes Retro to Avoid Prosecution

August 30th, 2006 - by admin

Paul Craig Roberts / Anti-War.com – 2006-08-30 23:35:02

http://www.antiwar.com/roberts/

(August 29, 2006) — When I was a kid, John Wayne war movies gave us the message that America was the good guy, the white hat that fought the villain. Alas, today the US and its last remaining non-coerced ally, Israel, are almost universally regarded as the bad guys over whom John Wayne would triumph. Today, the US and Israel are seen throughout the world as war-criminal states.

On Aug. 23, the BBC reported that Amnesty International has brought war crimes charges against Israel for deliberately targeting civilians and civilian infrastructure as an “integral part” of Israel’s strategy in its recent invasion of Lebanon.

Israel claims that its aggression was “self-defense” to dislodge Hezbollah from southern Lebanon. Yet, Israel bombed residential communities all over Lebanon, even Christian communities in the north in which no Hezbollah could possibly have been present.

United Nations spokesman Jean Fabre reported that Israel’s attack on civilian infrastructure annihilated Lebanon’s development: “Fifteen years of work have been wiped out in a month.”

Israel maintains that this massive destruction was unintended “collateral damage.”

President Bush maintains that Israel has “a right to protect itself” by destroying Lebanon.

Bush blocked the attempt to stop Israel’s aggression and is, thereby, equally responsible for the war crimes. Indeed, a number of reports claim that Bush instigated the Israeli aggression against Lebanon.

Bush has other war crime problems. Benjamin Ferencz, a chief prosecutor of Nazi war crimes at Nuremberg, recently said that President Bush should be tried as a war criminal side-by-side with Saddam Hussein for starting aggressive wars, Hussein for his 1990 invasion of Kuwait and Bush for his 2003 invasion of Iraq.

Under the Nuremberg standard, Bush is definitely a war criminal. The US Supreme Court also exposed Bush to war crimes charges under both the US War Crimes Act of 1996 and the Geneva Conventions when the Court ruled in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld against the Bush administration’s military tribunals and inhumane treatment of detainees.

President Bush and his attorney general agree that under existing laws and treaties Bush is a war criminal together with many members of his government. To make his war crimes legal after the fact, Bush has instructed the Justice (sic) Department to draft changes to the War Crimes Act and to US treaty obligations under the Geneva Conventions.

One of Bush’s changes would deny protection of the Geneva Conventions to anyone in any American court.

Bush’s other change would protect from prosecution any US government official or military personnel guilty of violating Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions. Article 3 prohibits “at any time and in any place whatsoever outrages upon personal dignity, in particular, humiliating and degrading treatment.” As civil libertarian Nat Hentoff observes, this change would also undo Sen. John McCain’s amendment against torture.

Eugene Fidell, president of the National Institute of Military Justice, says that Bush’s changes “immunize past crimes.”

Under the US Constitution and US legal tradition, retroactive law is impermissible. What do Americans think of their president’s attempts to immunize himself, his government, CIA operatives, military personnel, and civilian contractors from war crimes?

Apparently, the self-righteous, morally superior American “Christian” public could care less. The Republican-controlled House and Senate, which long ago traded integrity for power, are working to pass Bush’s changes prior to the midterm elections in the event the Republicans fail to steal three elections in a row and Democrats win control of the House or Senate.

Meanwhile, the illegal war in Iraq, based entirely on Bush administration lies, grinds on, murdering and maiming ever more people. According to the latest administration estimate, the pointless killing will go on for another 10-15 years.

Trouble is, there are no US troops to carry on the war. The lack of cannon fodder forces the Bush administration to resort to ever more desperate measures. The latest is the involuntary recall of thousands of Marines from the inactive reserves to active duty. Many attentive people regard this desperate measure as a sign that the military draft will be reinstated.

According to President Bush, the US will lose the “war on terror” unless the US succeeds in defeating “the Iraqi terrorists” by establishing “democracy in Iraq.” Of course, insurgents resisting occupation are not terrorists, and there were no insurgents or terrorists in Iraq until Bush invaded.

Bush’s unjustified invasion of Iraq and his support for Israeli aggression have done more to create terrorism in the Muslim world than Osama bin Laden could hope for. The longer Bush occupies Iraq and the more he tries to extend US/Israeli hegemony in the Middle East, the more terrorism the world will suffer.

Bush and the neocon ideology that holds him captive are the greatest 21st-century threats to peace and stability. The neoconized Bush regime invented the war on terror, lost it, and now is bringing terror home to the American people.

Posted in accordance with Title 17, US Code, for noncommercial, educational purposes.

“Stay the Course” Means Endless Violence

August 30th, 2006 - by admin

Max Elbaum / War Times/Tiempo de Guerras – 2006-08-30 23:30:02

http://www.war-times.org/

(August 29, 2006) — George W. Bush claims that “staying the course” is vital to defeating terrorism and bringing peace and democracy to the Middle East.

But “the course”, so far, has produced only violence and destruction. So long as Washington regards military force as the solution to every dilemma, conditions in the Middle East can only get worse.

Perhaps even much worse: with Iraq on the verge of exploding, Israel threatening Lebanon with another assault, and Washington building another lie-filled case for attacking Iran, the danger of engulfing the entire region — perhaps the entire planet — in uncontrollable violence looms just ahead.

“Incalculable Consequences”
Even pro-war New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman admitted in early August that the Iraq mission he championed “is not happening,” and that Washington must do something different.

The number of civilians dying from violence in Iraq now averages over 100 a day. At least 3,438 civilians were killed in July, the highest level ever. According to the New York Times, “sectarian violence is spiraling out of control.” Top US generals testifying before Congress even used words on Bush’s forbidden list: “civil war.”

Attacks against US and US-commanded Iraqi troops have doubled since January. A senior Defense Department official admitted in early August that “the insurgency has more public support and is more capable in numbers of people active and in its ability to direct violence than at any point in time.”

Hostility to the US occupation has become universal. In the most recent survey of Iraqi public opinion: 76% of Iraqis said the main reason the US invaded Iraq was “to control Iraqi oil”; 41% said it was “to build military bases”; and 32% declared it was “to support Israel.” Less than 2% said it was “to bring democracy to Iraq.” (US News & World Report, 8/17/06.)

Iraq analyst Michael Schwartz of Stony Brook University points out that the US occupation is at the roots of Iraq’s miseries: “There are three distinct types of terrorism in Iraq, all directly or indirectly connected to the occupation:

“[First, t]he original terrorists in Iraq were the military and civilian officials of the Bush administration — starting with their ‘shock and awe’ bombing campaign that destroyed Iraqi infrastructure in order to ‘undermine civilian morale’… [Second,] there are suicide car bomb attacks on restaurants, markets, and mosques where large number of Shia congregate.

At the beginning of the US occupation, car bombs were nonexistent; they only became common when a tiny proportion of the Sunni resistance movement became convinced that the Shia were the main domestic support for the occupation…

“[Third,] the final link in the terrorist chain can also be traced back to the occupation.

In 2005, Newsweek broke the story that the US was establishing (Shiite) ‘death squads’ within the Iraqi Ministry of Interior, modeled after the assassination teams the CIA had helped organize in El Salvador during the 1980s. These death squads have now become a fixture in Baghdad, where thousands of corpses have been found with signs of torture…

“All these derive from the US occupation … if the occupation continues, there will certainly come a point — perhaps already passed — when the collapse of government legitimacy, the destruction wrought by the war, and the horror of terrorist violence become self-sustaining. If that point is reached, all parties will enter a new territory with incalculable consequences.”

Lebanon: Interlude between Wars?
Lebanese returning to their villages and international relief agencies are still tallying the damage inflicted by 34 days of Israeli attacks. At least 1,183 Lebanese civilians were killed, one-third of whom were children; 4,054 civilians were injured; and 970,000 civilians became refugees displaced from their homes. Moreover, the Lebanese government estimates that at least 30,000 houses, 120 bridges, 94 roads, 25 fuel stations, 900 businesses, and two hospitals were destroyed.

The country is also dealing with environmental disaster, which stemmed from the Israeli air foece’s bombing of an oil-fueled power plant on the Lebanese coast. At least 15,000 tons of heavy fuel oil spilled into the Mediterranean, heavily polluting Lebanon’s world-famous beaches and coastline.

Lebanese civilians are still being injured by unexploded cluster bombs remaining from Israel’s aerial assault. According to the UN, many of these lethal munitions — rightly condemned by human rights groups because they look like toys and spread shrapnel indiscriminately — had US labels, indicating there were supplied to Israel by the US

Israel’s air force flew roughly 7,000 bombing sorties and dropped more than 70,000 bombs on Lebanon during their assault; Israel’s navy bombarded Lebanon approximately 2,500 times.

Hezbollah fired roughly 4,000 rockets at northern Israel in response, killing about 40 civilians; 117 Israeli soldiers died during their invasion of Lebanon.

Amnesty International has charged Israel with deliberately targeting civilians and civilian infrastructure, and with committing other war crimes in Lebanon. Investigative reporters have also revealed that Israel used the capture of two Israeli soldiers by Hezbollah as its pretext to launch a grossly-disproportionate, all-out attack that was long planned by the Israeli military in consultation with Washington. Pulitzer-Prize-winning reporter Seymour Hersh offered the most detailed account of US-Israeli collaboration. In the 8/14/06 New Yorker, Hersh reported that Washington encouraged Israel, in part because Israeli success “would be a demonstration for Iran.”

But Israel’s campaign failed to destroy Hezbollah’s military capacity, to intimidate its social base, or to bully Lebanese Sunnis and Christians into turn against the Shiite-based Hezbollah. To the contrary, Israel’s indiscriminate bombing, combined with Hezbollah’s effective guerrilla resistance, won backing for Hezbollah from over 80% of the Lebanese people. And it made Hezbollah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah the most popular figure in the entire Muslim world, among Sunni and Shia alike.

The UN cease-fire resolution being implemented now is a compromise. It was shaped by heavy-handed Washington bullying, plus European recognition that no international force can disarm Hezbollah when this could not be accomplished by an all-out Israeli assault.

Because Israel and Washington did not achieve victory through military might, they have launched a new propaganda barrage. There is no mention of: Israel’s 1982 invasion of Lebanon (which killed 14,000 civilians); its bloody 18-year illegal occupation of Lebanese territory (1982-2000); or its continuing illegal occupation of Lebanese and Syrian land (Shebaa Farms, Golan Heights). Inste ad, we are bombarded with stories about the alleged mortal danger that “Iran- and Syria-backed” Hezbollah poses to Israel and the US

Supposedly this justifies the almost daily threats Israeli leaders make to launch a new war. As for the Bush administration, Seymour Hersh reports:

“‘There is no way that Rumsfeld and Cheney will draw the right conclusion about this,’ a former senior intelligence official said. ‘When the smoke clears they’ll say it was a success, and they’ll draw reinforcement for their plan to attack Iran.'”

Palestine at the Pivot
Two weeks before Israel’s assault on Lebanon its army invaded Gaza, and it is still there. Israeli peace activist, former war hero, and former Member of the Israeli Parliament Uri Avnery points out that this invasion, too, was based on a lie:

“Hamas and its partners captured a soldier, which provided the excuse for a massive operation that had been prepared for a long time and whose aim is to destroy the Palestinian government.”

Israeli forces have kidnapped and imprisoned one-third of the members of Palestine’s democratically elected government. According to the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem, since June 28, 2006, Israeli firepower has killed at least 225 Palestinian civilians, including 46 children and 10 women, and wounded at least 815, including 232 children and 27 women. UN agencies report desperate shortages of food and water in Palestinian Gaza. One declares that “Gaza is on the brink of a public health disaster.”

Imposing such conditions on Gaza is, according to Israeli peace activist Gideon Levy, “a wide scale act of vengeance.” Palestinians are being collectively punished for resisting Israel’s plan to “settle” the Israel-Palestine conflict on Israeli terms. Months ago, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert declared that Israel would unilaterally turn its apartheid “Separation Wall” into a permanent border and annex huge swaths of the Palestinian West Bank.

Olmert — who shouts daily about Hezbollah’s alleged violations of UN Resolu tions — never mentions that his annexation plan clearly violates international law.

For instance: UN Resolution 242 calls for Israeli withdrawal from all lands taken in the 1967 war; the World Court has ruled Israel’s apartheid “Separation Fence” illegal; and UN Resolution 194, which Israel agreed to when it first joined the UN, affirms the right of Palestinians displaced in 1948 to return to their homes.

Israel’s ongoing US-backed dispossession of the Palestinians is the “open wound” (to use Uri Avnery’s words) that is pivotal in creating both the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and anti-US sentiment throughout the Middle East. Until a just resolution of the Palestinian issue is achieved, the region will be constantly on the verge of explosion.

Iran in the Gunsights
The biggest immediate danger is a US attack on Iran. Washington’s one-track, rely-on-military-force strategy has resulted in one disaster after another, and yet neoconservative war-hawks are pushing for more of the same. For i nstance, ultra-right-winger Bill Kristol demanded even more wars on 7/16/06:

“The right response is renewed strength — in supporting the governments of Iraq and Afghanistan, in standing with Israel, and in pursuing regime-change in Syria and Iran…. We might consider… a military strike against Iranian nuclear facilities. Why wait?”

Iran has long declared that its nuclear program is for exclusively peaceful purposes.

There is no reliable intelligence information indicating otherwise. And the bulk of the world — including 21 US retired generals and security experts — supports negotiations to resolve our outstanding differences over Iran’s uranium-enrichment program.

Figures ranging from top leaders in the US Army, Navy and Marines, to Iranian human-rights advocate and Nobel-Prize-winner Shirin Ebadi, to world-famous left-wing intellectual Noam Chomsky, all agree that a military strike on Iran threatens to be a catastrophe: potentially killing tens of thousands of innocent Iranians; unleashing full-scale regional war; jeopardizing the life of every US soldier in Iraq; ruining the global economy with oil-prices going over $100 a barrel; and spreading terrorism across the planet.

But the Bush administration, in a replay of its propaganda campaign to promote the invasion of Iraq, blames Iran for every problem from Lebanon to Iraq, ratchets up tensions, and keeps “all options on the table.” Seymour Hersh did not mince words when he told Amy Goodman, during an interview on “Democracy Now!”, that: “I don’t think this president is going to leave office with Iran still being — as he sees it — a nuclear threat.”

The Bush administration’s “let’s-replay-Iraq” notion ought to scare the living daylights out of everyone everywhere on the planet, for the very definition of fanatical insanity is continuing to do the same failed thing, and yet expecting a different result.

A condensed and updated version of this article will appear in the special, free, bilingual, hardcopy issue of War Times/Tiempo de Guerras that will appear on September 14, 2006. To order copies, please contact: distribution@war-times.org (25 in a bundle; there is no charge. If you can support this project, we ask $10 for a bundle, — more if you can afford it, less if you can’t). War Times/Tiempo de Guerras is a project of the Center for Third World Organizing. Donations to War Times are tax-deductible. War Times/Tiempo de Guerras, c/o P.O. Box 99096, Emeryville, CA 94662. http://www.war-times.org

US & French Troops Killed in Afghanistan & Canadians Kill Police and Civilians

August 30th, 2006 - by admin

GENews & Agence France-Presse & Terry Pedwell / CP – 2006-08-30 01:05:08

http://www.kavkazcenter.com/eng/content/2006/08/28/5427.shtml

19 US Troops Annihilated in Afghanistan
KavKazCenter.com / GENews

IRIB (August 28, 2006) — A Taliban Spokesman, Dr Mohammad Hanif, has reported of the killing of 19 US occupation soldiers in south and east of Afghanistan.

In a phone interview with IRIB Pashto Radio, Dr Hanif said Sunday evening that Taliban fighters attacked the US occupation forces at the Bachit District of the Afghan town of Kumdish in Nurestan Province, killing 13 US soldiers.

The Taliban Spokesman said the fighters also targeted a US military vehicle around the same time in Sahra Bagh of Afghanistan Khost Province, as a result of which at least six US soldiers were killed.

He further reported that a US military helicopter was hit and crashed just before landing in the airport of Sahra Bagh.

Mohammad Hanif went on saying Taliban forces Sunday night pounded a US military base in Nangraj Town of the Loghman Province that led to a half-an-hour clash between them and the occupation forces.

In a separate inccident three British soliders reprtedly killed when their Landrover hit the mine, instently killing the occupants.


French Troops Killed in Afghanistan
Agence France-Presse

(August 26, 200 ) — Two French special forces soldiers have been killed in an attack in eastern Afghanistan where they were working with a US-led coalition hunting down Taliban and Al-Qaeda forces, officials said today.

Taliban fighters meanwhile stormed district government and police posts in the south of the country, sparking hours-long firefights that left two rebels dead and two policemen missing, Afghan officials said.

A French unit on patrol in the province of Laghman was hit by a homemade bomb yesterday and ambushed by extremists who attacked with small-arms and machine-guns, the US-led coalition in Kabul said.

The coalition blamed the attack on “extremists”, who could include various anti-government forces. The defence ministry in Paris said the attackers were from the extremist Taliban movement removed from government in late 2001. The attack was near the Laghman capital Mihtarlam, 145 km east of Kabul.

Two French soldiers were also wounded and were in a stable condition at a hospital in the main US military base at Bagram, near Kabul, the coalition said.

French forces are involved in US-led anti-Taliban operations and some form part of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) that is also working to establish security to facilitate reconstruction.

Foreign and Afghan troops are battling an insurgency which has grown each year since the Islamist Taliban government was driven from power in late 2001 for harbouring the al-Qaeda terror network.

Seven French soldiers have been killed in action since September 2005, according to figures released Friday by French army general staff.

Six of the French troops were from special forces fighting the Taliban alongside US troops in the Spin Boldak region near the border with Pakistan. The other was with the ISAF.

The fighting has killed 80 foreign soldiers this year, which has seen a spike in Taliban-linked violence. Around 1000 Afghan rebels have also been killed as have scores of civilians.

The French special forces, which number about 200 and operate in secret, moved to the eastern city of Jalalabad around the end of July when ISAF took command of international forces in the south from the coalition.

The coalition is focused on counter-insurgency operations in the east and says it has arrested several suspected al-Qaeda fighters in operations in the area in the past weeks, with others killed in clashes.

Today Taliban attacked police and government offices in two districts in the south but were repelled in hours-long battles that left six rebels and a government worker dead, officials said.peA purported spokesman for the Taliban said the fighters had briefly captured the two districts but government officials rejected the claims.

Late yesterday, insurgents stormed a government building in the Moqur district of southern Ghazni province, sparking a five hour exchange of fire with police, provincial spokesman Abdul Ali Fakori told AFP. “A secretary of the district court was killed and two police were wounded,” he said.

Late on Thursday the extremist Islamists attacked police posts in a remote district of troubled Zabul province.”Three police posts were overtaken by Taliban and after hours of battle police retook control of the posts,” provincial police chief Noor Mohammad Pakteen told AFP. “Six Taliban were killed, 12 were wounded,” he said. A policeman was wounded and two were missing.

The Taliban have previously claimed to have captured remote and underprotected districts, but officials have usually rejected the claims.

However the militants did hold two districts in southern Helmand province last month, one for up to 48 hours, before being driven out by coalition and Afghan troops.


Afghan Cop Killed in Friendly-fire Shooting
Terry Pedwell / CP

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan (August 26, 2006 ) — Canadian soldiers killed an Afghan National Police officer and injured six others Saturday in two apparent friendly-fire shooting incidents in southern Afghanistan.

The shootings took place just days after a Canadian soldier shot and killed an Afghan boy and injured a teenager following an incident in which a Canadian convoy was struck by a suicide bomber.

In the first incident Saturday, Canadian soldiers fired on a truck carrying armed men after repeatedly warning the truck to stop, said a NATO spokesman.

Several warning shots were fired, sparking a shootout that resulted in the death of one man and injuries to four others, said Col. Fred Lewis, deputy commander of Canada’s NATO contingent in southern Afghanistan.

“It is believed that the persons in the vehicle opened fire in response to warning shots fired by the Canadians,” Lewis said. “It was at this time (that) Canadian soldiers returned fire on the vehicle and its six occupants.”

Only later did the Canadians discover that the men in the unmarked truck were Afghan National Police officers in plain clothes.

“Neither their vehicle nor their immediate appearance readily identified them as such,” said Lewis.

Less than an hour later, a motorcycle carrying two people approached the same Canadian artillery position – approximately 25 kilometres west of Kandahar – at high speed, military officials said.

The Canadians once again opened fire after warning the driver several times to stop, injuring both motorcyclists. They, too, turned out to be Afghan police officers. There were no Canadian casualties.

All six injured Afghans were airlifted to the international military hospital at Kandahar Air Field for treatment. Their conditions were unknown.

NATO described both shootings as self-defence reactions to volatile circumstances, but apologized for the incidents. “We share an extremely close and professional relationship with the Afghan National Police and we deeply regret this incident,” said Lewis. Afghan police and Canada’s arms-length military investigative body, the National Investigation Service, were to probe the shootings.

It’s unclear why the Canadians perceived a truckload of men as an imminent threat, even if they were armed.

Recent suicide attacks in southern Afghanistan, for instance, have involved mainly small vehicles driven by individual bombers rather than groups of insurgents. As well, truckloads of armed men, often in civilian clothing, are a common sight in the region.

Lewis couldn’t explain the reasons behind the shooting, saying details of the initial incident were still being gathered. “I think the key here is that these Afghan national security force members were not in uniform,” he said.

On Tuesday, a young Afghan boy was shot after a suicide attacker struck a Canadian resupply convoy in Kandahar City, killing one soldier and injuring three others. Cpl. David Braun, 27, of Raymore, Sask., died when a vehicle packed with explosives detonated beside the convoy. One civilian – a young girl – was also killed by the blast, along with the attacker.

Approximately two hours after the attack, two Afghan youths were fired on by a Canadian soldier when their motorcycle breached a security perimeter around the bombing site. A single bullet passed through the 17-year-old driver, striking and killing his young passenger.

The boy’s identity was not released by NATO officials, although a neighbour identified him by a single name, Asif. The neighbour also said the boy was eight years old. Earlier reports indicated he was 10.

Canada has roughly 2,200 soldiers working as part of NATO’s International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan, most of whom have just recently arrived in Kandahar as part of a fresh new six-month rotation of troops.

Lewis declined to speculate on whether the shootings might be linked to the fact that the soldiers involved were new to the job. “I would say right now that the soldiers have acted exactly in accordance with the rules of engagement and the training that they’ve undergone,” he said. “They did what they had to do.”

Posted in accordance with Title 17, US Code, for noncommercial, educational purposes.

Iraq Coalition Casalty Count
List of Soldiers from Ohio Killed in Afghanistan and Iraq

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