Wednesday, December 04, 2002

Joe Conason has written an outstandingly evocative little column on the peculiar relationship of Henry Kissinger, the new chairman of Bush's phony investigation on the intelligence failures that led to September 11, and some of the entities he is supposed to investigate. Kissinger thinks that he can somehow avoid being in any conflicts of interest with his corporate clients through some magical process whereby he'll temporarily ignore the interests of those who are paying him. Just to add to the outrage, he'll also not disclose just who these corporate clients are, so the facts won't distract the public into thinking the commission is some sort of elaborate con game (presumably at least some of his clients want their names hidden as they want to have the benefit of his peculiar 'expertise' while not having any public connection to such a person). Kissinger apparently doesn't understand the concept of 'conflict of interest'. Kissinger was acting for Unocal at a time that Unocal was attempting to arrange a pipeline through Afghanistan and hired Kissinger to polish up the Taliban's reputation in Washington (here is the Washington Post article that Conason refers to) and to deal with Turkmenistan. Unocal's main partner in the pipeline deal was Delta Oil. As I've already stated (see item 13), Delta Oil is partly owned by the al-Amoudi family of Saudi Arabia (headed by Mohammed Hussein al-Amoudi), a family closely related through business interests to the family of Khalid bin Mahfouz, a probable investor in George Bush's company, Harken Energy. It was also supported by King Fahd of Saudi Arabia. Khalid bin Mahfouz and Mohammed Hussein al-Amoudi allegedly have had ties to Islamic charities and companies linked financially to al-Qaeda. So we have Kissinger in the 1990's representing a consortium of Unocal and Delta Oil trying to get U. S. government recognition for the Taliban, who have just been bombed to the stone age in Bush's war on terrorism for 'harboring' al-Qaeda in Afghanistan, with one of the pipeline partners, Delta Oil, having possible connections to George Bush, al-Qaeda, and the King of Saudi Arabia, when the current U. S. position seems to be that funding for al-Qaeda is all the fault of the Saudi Royal Family! You could even make the argument that the Taliban was actually created by the Pakistani ISI at the behest of the CIA in order to create a form of stable government in Afghanistan so the pipeline from Central Asia could go south through Afghanistan rather than through Iran (that is the type of big thinking that Kissinger's clients pay such big money for). Another lobbyist for Unocal was Robert Oakley, a former U.S. ambassador to Pakistan (not to mention a man who had a minor role in the Iran-Contra shenanigans). What Conason doesn't mention is that Oakley was involved in the 1980's with the CIA in aiding Afghan mujahideen, of course the same group out of which Osama bin Laden first rose to prominence. Yet another Unocal consultant was Zalmay Khalilzad, who has now been appointed as Bush's envoy to the post-Taliban U. S. puppet state now pretending to run Afghanistan. On October 21, 1995, when it was first announced that Unocal had won the right to build the Afghan pipeline, Unocal's consultant, Henry Kissinger, said the deal looked like "the triumph of hope over experience." Our experience of the life of Henry Kissinger gives us little hope that he will be able to keep his amazing number of conflicts of interest from influencing his chairmanship of the phony commission.