Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Perle's pogrom

Richard Perle spoke to the AIPAC conference and proclaimed, to loud hosannas, that the United States must start dropping bombs on Iran to stop its dangerous nuclear program. From Dana Milbank's brave article:

". . . at a luncheon 'debate' in between, Rep. Jane Harman (D-Calif.) and informal administration foreign policy adviser Richard N. Perle tried to one-up each other in pro-Israel views."


"Perle provoked cheers from the crowd when he favored a military raid on Iran, saying that 'if Iran is on the verge of a nuclear weapon, I think we will have no choice but to take decisive action.' When Harman said the 'best short-term option' is the U.N. Security Council, the crowd reacted with boos."

The underlying assumption is that it is a fact that Iran is on the verge of producing a nuclear bomb, and the main educational thrust of the AIPAC conference was to prove that point to American politicians. Therefore, it is clear that Perle and AIPAC are demanding an American military attack on Iran. This would be bad enough, but is made much worse by the following seven facts:

  1. Perle is an integral part of the neocon crowd that actively lied to the American people about Saddam's supposed weapons of mass destruction, and thus has zero credibility.

  2. Even if Iran had bombs, which it doesn't, they could only be used for defensive purposes, as nuclear retaliation would be fatal to the country.

  3. The only nuclear power in the Middle East with dangerous bombs is none other than Israel, the country that Perle and AIPAC work for.

  4. The reason we know about Iran's nuclear program is that Iran has allowed UN inspectors to inspect, something that Israel won't allow.

  5. Any bombs Iran might ever have in the distant future could never pose any threat to the United States as Iran has no means to deliver them.

  6. Since the Iranian nuclear program is spread out and hidden in anticipation of just the attack Perle is calling for, bombs wouldn't stop it.

  7. Bombing will kill a lot of civilians, but will have no effect on dislodging the Iranian government, and will indeed strengthen the position of the hardliners in Iran.

If we therefore sieve out the bullshit from Perle's remarks - a process which usually leaves nothing left - what he is advocating is for the United States to drop bombs on innocent civilians of a sovereign country that poses absolutely no threat to the United States. Here we have a prominent Jewish intellectual talking to a group of Jewish lobbyists for Israeli interests, advocating what amounts to a slaughter of Muslim civilians - a Jewish pogrom against Muslims, if you will - all to the cheers and applause of his audience. I know we're not supposed to make the Hitler comparison, but this is getting awfully close (Hitler had his bogus and lying reasons for the Holocaust too). Given what we now know about the lies about Iraq, the fact that Perle has the audacity to stand up and start lying for war again is amazing.

Whatever else Perle may be, he is not stupid, so why is he advocating a course for the United States that will lead to the consolidation of the strength of the hardliners in Iran? Surely that can't be in the interests of Israel? The plan is to so enrage the Iranians with the bombing attacks - to put a bee in their turbans - that the next step of the long-term Zionist plan for the Middle East can be put in place (other parts of the plan include instigating wars so that land can be taken, illegally occupying that land, oppressing the inhabitants and calling their reaction 'terrorism', pushing for the attack in Iraq, and taking steps to ensure that Iraq is broken into small countries). The Iranian leaders might decide to retaliate against the United States bombing by sponsoring some act of terrorism. In what is the more likely scenario, however, their justified anger would put them in a position to be portrayed by the disgusting American media as so angry that a American or Israeli terrorist attack faked to look like it was sponsored by Iran would serve as the reason for American military retaliation. This would involve actually fighting a war on the ground to remove the current Iranian leadership. In other words, the point of the bombing advocated by Perle and AIPAC is to lead to a real war in Iran with hundreds of thousands of American soldiers on the battlefield. Since more bombs won't teach the mullahs a lesson, American troops would have to fight and die in Iran.

The United States can barely fight the war it has going now, and the Pentagon likes to keep a few troops around in case of a war of necessity (as opposed to the hobby wars which the neocons like so much), so a draft will be necessary. This would please the neocons as an end in itself, as they like the fascist values that the total miltarization of society brings, and they particularly want the United States to be like Israel. Needless to say, neither the neocons nor their children will participate in this draft, but will bravely serve in the First Jewish Typing Corps, cheering on the battle against all those evil Muslims. The poor in America can serve as the fodder units to die in the Middle East.

Iran has two or three times the population of Iraq, hasn't been weakened by a sanctions regime, has piles of money to spend on arms, and has the example of Iraq to allow it to prepare for the American attack. Since the Americans obviously can't handle Iraq, just wait for Iran. Why would Perle want the United States to fall into this disaster of a war? There are three reasons:

  1. Neocons consider themselves to be change agents, and like to do things which have a big effect on people's lives, and are particularly fond of war as an end in itself. They consider it ennobling.

  2. The chief neocon goal is to start a general crusade of the Christians against the Muslims, for no other reason than that they really, really hate Muslims (the attack on Iraq is clearly a crusade, and is understood to be such by the Pentagon).

  3. The only way Greater Israel - the ultimate goal - is going to happen is in the general confusion of a conflagration in the Middle East.

The attack on Iran and the planned consequences of that attack would be the biggest mistake in American history. It would lead inevitably to a general crusade of Americans against Muslims all over the world. It may not happen (Syria appears to be the most likely first target, and there are those in the American government who would love to get their hands on the Saudi oil fields). However, if it does happen, when the shit hits the fan - and it will - Americans will be looking for someone to blame. American Jews just barely avoided being blamed for the Iraq debacle. The American anti-war movement, such as it is, won't be able to stop this war, particularly if it is arranged to fight it within the context of the war on terror (and even huge anti-war rallies are ignored by the arms-manufacturer-owned disgusting American media, and thus have no political effect). Important leaders are going to have to take a stand. Unless some prominent American Jewish leaders start to speak up decisively against this new war, the American Jewish community is going to deeply regret the consequences of the latest proposed Jewish pogrom against Muslims (and moderate American Christian leaders also have to start to counter the plans of the Christian Zionists). The relentless AIPAC push towards disaster means it is no longer possible to safely play the bad faith game of pretending to hold liberal principles while secretly cheering on the most vile plans of the Zionists.

Sunday, May 29, 2005

Voting machines and paper ballots

Having a paper trail with computer voting machines is slightly better than not having a paper trail, but it is still not good enough. From 'Avedon' at Eschaton:

". . . a paper trail is meaningless if no one ever looks at it. The initial count of optical-scan ballots is done by machine, and if you fiddle the machine count - which you obviously can - so that no race is close enough to require a recount, no one will ever know."


"See, if all those ballots from optical-scan machines were actually reviewed, we might find that there was no difference between the exit polls and the actual votes - that is, that the machines had been tweaked to give a false result.

But since no one ever demanded a hand-count of those ballots, it's unlikely that we'll ever know.

And that's why I'm unimpressed with mere 'paper trails'. Evidence is worthless if no one ever looks at it - and competently stealing an election just means making sure there is never a re-count. Functionally speaking, there is no difference between an election that can't be recounted and one that won't be recounted.

Which is why we need paper ballots that are publicly hand-counted on site, on the night. If we don't actually see the ballots being individually counted, we don't know that they have been counted properly."

Absolutely correct. If you are trying to fix an election, and it appears that the threshold for a paper recount is a three percent difference in votes, you just set the machine to win by four percent. In order to prevent this, you always have to have a hand count of the hard ballots. If you have scrutineers from every interested party physically present watching the hand recount, it is almost impossible to have a fixed result. Indeed, the only way to be sure of a fair count is to have an open hand count of physical ballots in front of witnesses. This leads to what I have called the paradox of voting machines: if we have to hand count anyway, why do we need the machines at all?

The Non-Prosecution of AIPAC

AIPAC has been trying to portray its relationship with Steve Rosen and Keith Weissman as very strained, in an effort to make it appear that the two acted outside the scope of their authority. This position suffered a body blow when it was revealed that AIPAC had spent considerable money paying for the lawyers for the two supposedly fired employees. Here is the knock out (my emphasis in bold):

"AIPAC leaders have taken a series of steps to cut themselves off from the two former officials suspected in the case. Sources close to the case say the prosecution posed four conditions to AIPAC, which would guarantee that it would not be involved in the indictments: a change of working methods to ensure that such incidents don't happen again; the firing of the two officials and public disassociation from them; no offers of high compensation or anything else to make it appear the two quit of their own volition; and no financing of their defenses.

AIPAC has abided by the first three conditions - and the severance pay offered the two was considered very low, considering the many years they worked for the lobby. But it is said to be helping with their legal fees, indirectly, through its own law firm."

My comments:

  1. Have you ever heard of prosecutors agreeing not to prosecute a crime based on a condition that the prospective defendant agree not to appear to be helping its ex-employees who are already being charged? This is purely political, with the prosecutors simply not wanting to be embarrassed if they let AIPAC off the hook and it should be revealed that the firing was a sham.

  2. If AIPAC is funding the defenses of the employees by providing its own legal firm for free, this proves that there cannot possibly be a conflict between the defense of the employees and AIPAC, which is impossible unless the firing is a sham. If there was any possible conflict, including a conflict derived from information that the firm had in its normal course of dealing with AIPAC, the law firm couldn't take the case (I suppose they might take the risk if they had a waiver from both the employees and AIPAC, but that just proves further collusion, as AIPAC wouldn't give the waiver if there really was a conflict).

The prosecution appears to be bending over backwards to keep AIPAC out of court, and AIPAC is doing all it can to help its supposedly rogue employees - employees who had to be fired because their unauthorized actions so embarrassed AIPAC - while appearing not to. Far from being anti-Semitic, the prosecution is bending itself into pretzels, in a way it would never do for any other defendant, to keep AIPAC out of court.

Saturday, May 28, 2005

Joannides and Posada

I've recently mentioned the CIA's attempt to block the release of files concerning its employee George Joannides, and the attempt by infamous terrorist Luis Posada to settle in the United States. Since Posada was almost certainly one of the boys in the anti-Castro-Cuban cadre connected to (managed by?) Joannides, and the ties between that cadre and the assassination of JFK are becoming more apparent, what seems like ancient history may be very topical indeed (consider "Operation 40" and Posada; notice the neat picture of the 'boys' seated around a table, which some people think contains a picture of Porter Goss, although the picture itself has almost certainly been rather crudely tampered with). You can also see why the United States doesn't want to turn Posada over to the Venezuelans, especially given the close ties between Venezuela and Cuba. Even at this late date, the CIA is still having to scramble to keep the cat in the bag.

Feith and Franklin

An article in the New York Sun (of all places) contains additional information on the Franklin-AIPAC scandal, including details of Franklin's June 2003 meeting. We have usually been hearing about his July 2004 meeting, and this shift from a pure propaganda rag is no doubt part of the AIPAC defense. Nevertheless, the article contains a few useful pieces of information (Cacheris is Franklin's lawyer, who claims to be working for free, but of course if he was being paid you would immediately wonder who had an interest in paying him; my emphasis in bold):

"Following Mr. Cacheris's agreement to defend Mr. Franklin, the bureau offered a deal whereby Mr. Franklin would plead guilty to the lesser charge of mishandling classified material, or section 793 of the U.S. Code. The lesser charge carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison. Mr. Cacheris said he refused the deal and that he intends to take the case to trial. Despite turning down the offer and ceasing to cooperate with the FBI, Mr. Franklin was charged with only mishandling, not espionage, on Tuesday."


"Mr. Cacheris told the Sun yesterday that he believed the FBI did not originally intend to investigate Mr. Franklin. 'We believe there was a pre-existing investigation that Larry Franklin is not involved in,' he said yesterday."

and (the best part; my emphasis in bold):

" . . . Mr. Franklin first approached Messrs. Rosen and Weissman in February or March 2003 for a meeting at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Pentagon City, Va., with the intention of passing on threat information regarding Iran's plans for American soldiers in Iraq.

According to one source familiar with the case, Mr. Franklin was told by an aide to an undersecretary of defense, Douglas Feith, that the two Aipac lobbyists could get the threat information to the National Security Council. Mr. Rosen, in particular, has a reputation for high-level contacts with policy-makers in the executive branch. According to sources familiar with the case, the three men at this 2003 meeting discussed passing the threat information to National Security Council official Elliott Abrams."

So the story is now that Douglas Feith decided that the best way to get information to his colleague and fellow ultra-Zionist Elliott Abrams was to have it delivered through Franklin to AIPAC and then to Abrams? Very strange. Note that the story that Franklin was trying to pass on information concerning threats to Israeli agents in Kurdistan is now that he was trying to pass on information concerning threats from Iranians to Americans in Iraq. The idea that Franklin was trying to protect Americans from Iranians simultaneously makes Franklin more sympathetic and focuses the blame on Iran (which is of course on the current Zionist hit list), but has the disadvantage of making no sense. Why didn't Feith just pick up the phone and call Abrams? Mr. Rosen's "high-level contacts" may have been excellent, but they weren't better than Feith's. While this part of the new cover story makes no sense, AIPAC's continuing efforts to spin this scandal have now led directly to two big admissions:

  • Israel was indeed using intelligence agents to manipulate events in Kurdistan; and

  • Douglas Feith was behind the Franklin-AIPAC scandal (although probably not exactly in the way described in this article).

Is this why Feith had to leave the Bush Administration? Can we expect to see charges leveled against Feith? Was Franklin only charged with mishandling classified material because a more serious charge would also involve having to charge the guy who put him up to it, Feith?

Friday, May 27, 2005

Israeli provocation of Hezbollah

The IDF is quietly but constantly trying to provoke Hezbollah into retaliating for Israeli attacks in Lebanon, presumably in an effort to stop the Gaza withdrawal.

The mystery of the Iraqi resistance

I suppose the second biggest mystery about the occupation of Iraq - after the fact that the United States is spending billions of dollars to build a series of giant permanent military bases in Iraq without any mainstream media coverage (the complete lack of mainstream media coverage is no surprise) - is the fact that apparently no one - not the media, not the Pentagon, not the learned commentators - seems to have the slightest idea of the nature of the Iraqi resistance. The insurgents are magical characters, able to engage in 50 to 100 organized attacks each day without leaving the slightest trace of who they are. This article by Ghali Hassanis simply the only honest writing on the subject. There are two main American lies:

  • the resistance is made up of 'foreign' fighters associated with al Qaeda;

  • the non-foreign resistance is comprised entirely of Sunni Baathist agents who are primarily involved in attacking Shi'ites.

Both of these tales make Americans feel somewhat better about the guilt they must feel as they try to wash off the blood, but both are misleading American propaganda.

The lie that the resistance is comprised of al Qaeda fighters is simply a return of the old lie that Saddam was associated with al Qaeda, and is another rather crude attempt to fit the occupation of Iraq into the 'war on terror'. While there seem to be a few foreign fighters in Iraq, this is no credit to the Americans, but just more evidence that the American war on terror is the biggest recruitment aid al Qaeda has ever had.

The lie that the resistance is just Sunni 'deadenders' goes back to Rumsfeld, and is again an attempt to make Americans feel better about themselves by hiding the fact that the entire country is in opposition to the brutal American occupation. Even people who should know better seem to like this tale. The idea that the Sunnis are fighting, not to oust the Americans but to restore Baathist power over Iraq, fits nicely with the American mythology of its noble 'liberation' of Iraq from Saddam. While there is undoubtedly some settling of scores going on, the majority of Sunni-Shi'ite violence is the work of the same agents provocateurs who are trying to start a civil war in Iraq (and the fact that Iraqi politicians on both sides are not taking the bait is an indication that the nature of this provocation is understood in Iraq). The reason that Sunnis are prominent in the resistance is because Baathists made up the officer corps of the Iraqi army, and know where the weapons are hidden and how to use them.

The sad fact of the matter is that when you break international law and start a completely unprovoked war on a sovereign country based on a pile of lies, and then engage in a brutal occupation murdering and torturing innocent civilians, everyone is going to be in the resistance. Not everyone has the ability to fight in the same way, and the most active fighters may very well be Sunni veterans of Saddam's army. Blaming the resistance on foreign fighters or Sunni deadenders is just another in the long series of American lies about Iraq intended to fit this conflict into the American mythology that everything the United States does is good, and all its opponents are bad. This mythology - proven to be a complete lie so many, many times - is so ingrained into American thinking that even the best commentators cannot grasp the reality of the ongoing resistance of the people of Iraq to the evil American oppression. It isn't going to be psychologically possible for Americans to end the occupation until Americans start to accept the reality of the fact that they are not noble liberators but brutal occupiers, and the whole country of Iraq wants them out, now.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Shoot-down orders

More intrigue from Cessnagate: did Rumsfeld give military officials the authority to shoot down the Cessna, or not? What is it with very high American officials and shoot-down orders anyway? We got the same gobblygook regarding whether Cheney gave orders on September 11. Wouldn't there be some kind of standing order for a plane to be shot down on the decision of the military officers involved in the matter if the plane was within a certain radius of key targets?

As punishment for scaring the hell out of everybody - except for the President, who was kept blissfully unaware - and shutting down the U. S. government for a day, the FAA revoked pilot Hayden 'Jim' Sheaffer's license for a whole year. A whole year!

How to fake a suicide bomb

Here (or here) is John Kaminski on the clever techniques used by the Americans - or at least those Americans working for Israel - to fake suicide bombings in Iraq. This is part of the effort to create a civil war in Iraq. Since such a war will embarrass the paleocons, and make exploitation of the oil impossible, it will be interesting to see if the paleocons are so emasculated by the neocons that they are no longer up to fighting the civil war in Washington. Despite enormous provocations, the Iraqis are doing all they can to avoid a war, but will need a little American help if they are to escape an even greater disaster than the current occupation.

How to start a war

If someone had managed to shoot and kill Laura Bush while she walked around the Temple Mount with insufficient security and chaotic conditions, the Israelis would have pulled a Palestinian out of the crowd who would admit to being in Hamas or Hezbollah, and also admit to have been put up to it by Syria or Iran. American bombers would be dropping bombs within a week. See how easy it is to start a war? Perhaps some Secret Service agent accidentally got his head in the way of a clear shot (there is a first time for everything!). This would also leave Bush free to marry his true love immediately after his Presidency (after flying to Canada for the ceremony).

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Military experiments

From the Telegraph (or here):

"Fears that a new superbug is taking hold in Britain emerged yesterday after a Royal Marines recruit was found to have died suddenly from an infection with no known cure.

Richard Campbell-Smith, 18, died three days after the lethal toxin, which is linked to MRSA, entered his body through a scratch in his leg."

Accident? Or biowarfare experiment gone awry? Or maybe that is what was supposed to have happened. MSRA may just be a distraction. Soldiers, as if they don't have enough to worry about, are often the guinea pigs for military experiments.

Dual Loyalties

From the transcript of an interview with Caroline Glick, Senior Middle East Fellow at the Center for Security Policy in Washington, DC, on the imprisonment of Jonathan Pollard (my emphasis in bold):

"I was in high school when he was arrested. And I saw in what he did a basic problem with American Jewry, in that if the United States is not acting as an ally for Israel, where is one's loyalty supposed to lay? I never understood why Pollard, feeling as he did about Israel, ever joined the US government, why he hadn't simply made Aliyah [immigrated to Israel]. In fact the whole Pollard issue was an important thing that led me eventually to decide to make Aliyah after I graduated from college. It seemed to me that if your loyalties are called into question, you have to be willing to make decisions. I never quite understood why he had betrayed the United States by passing secrets to Israel."

You might say that this is ambiguous, in that she may be questioning why he betrayed the United States. One of her three reasons for releasing Pollard makes it clear what she means:

"The second thing is how his case relates to American Jews - specifically those who work for the US government. Jonathan Pollard is a symbol that is used very much against American Jews. He is the symbol that is always in the background to constantly point a finger at them and cast suspicion on them for the claim of dual loyalties that make it very, very hard for Jews in Washington to operate without fear. It is a terrible situation."

Her logic is very odd. Releasing Pollard would not remove the problem of aspersions concerning dual loyalties of Jewish employees. In fact, it would probably increase the perception that such dual loyalties may exist. What releasing Pollard would do is cast a blessing on the kind of thing that Pollard did. In other words, it is the Zionist view that Pollard has to be released so that it is clear that the American government accepts the natural dual loyalty of its Jewish employees and forgives them if they commit treason in order to help Israel in cases where American policy diverges from Israeli policy. American intelligence networks and the lives of American spies are a small price to pay so that American Jews can feel good about committing treason for Israel. This is exactly the same mentality that underlies the current AIPAC scandal. It is amazing to read this only because the issue of dual loyalties is never admitted. Glick is suggesting that if you are an American Jew, and the interests of Israel are different than those of the United States, it is morally unacceptable not to commit treason against the United States. Where is one's loyalty supposed to lay? Her suggestion that he should have immigrated to Israel doesn't make any sense, as another of her points was that the information he provided was extremely important to Israel, and Pollard would never have been in a position to help Israel unless he was in the American government. If she feels that he ought not to have put himself in the position he found himself in, she also feels that, once in that position, there is no question as to what he should have done. If this view is shared by American Jews, how can the United States possibly take the risk of hiring Jews in positions where intelligence matters or sensitive information may be involved?

I hasten to add that I am sure that this is not the view of most American Jews. The problem still remains. If it is the view of a significant number of American Jews, how does the American government determine which category a prospective employee will fall into?

We can start to understand why Pollard has become so important to the Zionists (the heckling of Mrs. Bush while she was in Israel concerned Pollard). As far as they are concerned, he didn't do anything wrong. Since Zionism is morally right and determined by G_d, anything which helps their cause cannot possibly be wrong. In fact, Pollard would have done something wrong only if he hadn't betrayed the United States. Pollard's continued incarceration indicates that there are still at least some Americans who don't share this view. Since the Project of Greater Israel is one hundred percent dependent upon continued and completely unwavering American sponsorship and support, the Zionists find it intolerable that these American patriots are still in the American power structure. As long as anyone in the American government feels that American interests should prevail over the interests of another country, the Project is not safe. It is necessary to prove to the world, to Americans, and to Israelis, just who calls the shots in the United States. When Pollard is released - and I'm certain he will be - there will no longer be any question over who runs the United States, and the Zionists - not to mention their dual-loyalist friends in the American government, friends who have become quite prominent in recent years - can finally rest easy.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Mr. Iraq

Don't you think for a 68-year-old man who has spent the last year-and-a-half languishing in a tiny prison cell Saddam looks awfully . . . buff? I get the impression that Juan Cole thinks so. Seeing as the American occupation has left everyone else in a state of near starvation, Saddam should run for the title of Mr. Iraq, the Iraqi body building champion. I'd say that rather than Mr. Hussein this is more like Mr. Photoshop (like this, or this, or, my favorite, this), except for the fact that it is probably not Saddam's real head either.

Norm Coleman's useful stupidity

Wayne Masden has an excellent article in which he begins to flesh out the Oil-For-Food-For-Money-For-Republicans scandal. Here are few of the choicest nuggets with a few of my comments:

  1. The document which purports to damn Galloway was 'translated' by - get this! - MEMRI, the Ultra-Ultra-Ultra-Likudnik disinformation organization. You still think Israel hasn't got a hand in all this? A founder of MEMRI is ultra-Zionist Meyrav Wurmser, who is married to David Wurmser, who is none other than Dick Cheney's Middle East adviser.

  2. Another target of the MEMRI 'translation' is Father Jean-Marie Benjamin. I wrote about his odd story on November 27, 2002. Let me quote the original story (see also here; September 7 is September 7, 2001):

    "On September 7, when he officiated at a wedding in Todi, Italy, French-born Father Jean-Marie Benjamin, 55, explained informally to a judge and several politicians that he had been told that a terrorist commando was preparing an attack, with hijacked passenger planes, on US and British population centres."


    "On September 11, a quarter-hour after the first attack on the World Trade Centre, a former European parliamentarian called the priest in great distress, realising his prediction came true. The priest would not name the official out of respect for his privacy."

    and (the best part; my emphasis in bold):

    "Father Benjamin told Zenit that in recent months the organization of Muslim terrorist groups has changed.

    'In the past, these organisations had autonomous activity, without any links to other bodies,' he explained. 'But now they have developed a very different apparatus.'

    '(Osama) bin Laden alone is linked to 70 of his organisations in some 30 countries,' he added. 'In turn, these groups are in touch with some 900 Muslim organisations, located in all the continents, and they have thousands of militants, some of whom are Westerners, who do not have an Arab surname and who don't even believe in Islam.'"

    You can see why MEMRI might have it in for him.

  3. Masden's five paragraphs on BayOil encompass just about every conspiracy theory in the past twenty years:

    "Bayoil is incorporated in the Bahamas with affiliates in Switzerland and Luxembourg. A Chilean-Italian named Augusto Giangrandi, a resident of Florida, served as chairman of Bayoil. Although Bayoil principals David Chalmers, Jr., Briton John Irving, and Ludmil Dionissiev, a Bulgarian citizen and permanent resident of Houston, were indicted, Giangrandi was not touched.

    Giangrandi has a history that goes back to the Iran-Iraq war when Donald Rumsfeld was helping to arm Saddam and when the Reagan-Bush administration was violating UN arms sanctions imposed against both warring parties. During the war, Iraq bought hundreds of millions of dollars worth of cluster bombs and other weapons from Carlos Cardoen, a Chilean arms manufacturer who was close to Chilean dictator General Augusto Pinochet. In 1983, Cardoen hired Giangrandi, then a resident of Florida, to ship zirconium from the United States to Iraq. Zirconium is used in the manufacture of cluster bombs. Giangrandi falsely stated in his expert license application that the zirconium would be used for mining explosives in Chile. Giangrandi also owned Cosmos of Livorno, Italy, the manufacturer of mini-submarines and served as president of Swisstech, Cardoen's marketing unit.

    According to a 1995 deposition by Howard Teicher, a Reagan National Security Council official, Cardoen was working for the CIA to illegally ship military hardware to Saddam. Giangrandi's operation was part of a much larger criminal conspiracy involving agricultural loans guaranteed by the Department of Agriculture's Commodity Credit Corporation and funded by Italy's Banca Nazionale del Lavoro (BNL). The failed Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI) (also known as the Bank of Crooks and Criminals International) had connections to both BNL and Ahmad Chalabi's Petra Bank. In 1992, The Wall Street Journal reported that George W. Bush and Jeb Bush had been named as potential witnesses in the class action lawsuit brought about the clients of BCCI who had been defrauded in the bank's collapse. During the time, George W. was involved in various failed oil companies in Houston and Jeb, operating from a base in Miami, was involved in suspicious real estate deals.

    There was another Florida connection to the illegal arms shipments to Iraq. Iraqi arms dealer Ishan Barbouti worked with Iran-contra felon Richard Secord to secretly ship large amounts of cyanide from Product Ingredient Technologies, a food-flavoring factory in Florida, to Iraq for use in Saddam's nerve gas production during the 1980s. All of these transactions involving Bayoil's Giangrandi, Cardoen, Secord, and Barbouti, were known to President George H. W. Bush and Secretary of State James Baker.

    Between 1990 and 1991, three journalists who were investigating various aspects of Cardoen's secretive arms trading activities were found dead in suspicious circumstances. They were freelance writer Danny Casolaro, found dead from wrist slashes in a bathtub in a Martinsburg, West Virginia, hotel; Lawrence Ng, a stringer for the Financial Times, found shot to death in the bathtub of his apartment in Guatemala City; and Jonathan Moyle, a British aviation journalist found hanging in the closet of his hotel room in Santiago, Chile. Moyle had uncovered details of Cardoen's role in the Bush 41 deal to illegally ship weapons to Iraq."

  4. Masden goes on to note that one of the largest recipients of BayOil Iraqi oil shipments was Enron. Of course Enron CEO 'Kenny Boy' was a great pal and financier of George Bush, and Cheney has fought successfully to hide the nature of the Energy Task Force meetings between major American oil interests, including Enron, and Cheney in which they decided how to carve up the Iraqi oil fields after the inevitable war against Iraq (which of course was not supposed to be inevitable).

  5. Masden on the possible Bush crime family connection:

    "The Iraqi Oil-for-Food scandal also involves one of the Bush children - Dorothy 'Doro' Bush Koch, sister of George W. Bush and married to Bobby Koch, reportedly a cousin in the oil industry Koch family, the owner of Koch Industries, which is also one of Bush's largest political donors. The minority committee report indicates that Koch Industries was also a major recipient of illegal Iraqi oil and a huge source of kickbacks to Saddam Hussein . . . ."

  6. I note that the friend of Galloway named by Coleman as the key player in the oil-for-food scandal is Fawaz Zureikat. Indeed, after Coleman's case fell apart under Galloway's withering attack, all that was left was that Galloway was friends with Fawaz Zureikat. Zureikat and Galloway were both on the same obviously forged line of the documents used by Coleman. Fawaz Zureikat, if you can believe it, is still involved with the United States in Iraq. A firm run by him has the exclusive rights to sell highly sensitive military encryption technologies made by a US firm, Middle East Advanced Semi-conductors, to the Iraqi military, police and government. This contract had to be authorized by the U. S. government under strict export control rules. If he is such a bad guy, how did he meet the extremely strict American security tests to be involved in sales of such secret encryption technology?

As we dig further into this scandal, it appears that the attack by Coleman was an ill-advised attempt to hide the real scandals - real scandals involving supporters of the Republican Party and even Dick Cheney and George Bush themselves - behind an attack on a British politician who Coleman thought couldn't, or wouldn't, defend himself. These scandals go back to illegal support for Saddam in the 1980's, and tie into the Republican nexus of corruption involving Iran-Contra, BNL, BCCI, and more recent scandals involving illegal support for Saddam in the 1990's. Coleman's timing, right after the revelations in the Downing Street Memo that the attack was inevitable (as was the divvying up of the oil fields planned by Cheney and American oil interests), and right after the revelations that the main players in the oil-for-food scandal were none other than big American oil companies connected to the highest levels of the Republican Party, is so bad it's almost comic. When you add the involvement of Chalabi and MEMRI (an arm of the Likudniks in Israel) in the defaming of Galloway you have pretty much a summary of all the co-conspirators in the war crimes against the people of Iraq.

Friday, May 20, 2005

George Joannides secrets

The CIA is going to file papers in court today to block the release of documents relating to its employee, George Joannides. The details of why information regarding Joannides may be important to understanding the JFK assassination are summarized in this letter (signed by a peculiar combination of disinformation agents and legitimate researchers, meaning that the CIA itself may be of two minds on the matter). The energy the CIA is expending subverting American law leads one to believe that they are hiding something important.

Censoring Galloway

Don't let Norm Coleman fool you into thinking that he didn't mind George Galloway's testimony. He's probably planning to send the aide who suggested it would be a good idea to attack Galloway on a one-way small plane trip to Minnesota (if you know what I mean). Sploid has noticed ("Whitewash: Senate Hides Galloway Rant") that the only witness of seven who testified to the U.S. Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs on May 17 who does not have a pdf of his testimony on the Senate website is . . . George Galloway (look quick before they change it).

Thursday, May 19, 2005

The Falluja pattern

We're starting to see a pattern in the new American way of war. The assault on the town of Al Qa'im (or here or here or here) is remarkably similar to the attack on Falluja. The characteristics:

  1. Pick an area with a significant local insurgency that can be destroyed for the purposes of teaching other areas a lesson.

  2. Seal off the town, so the civilians can't leave.

  3. Drop bombs on the captive civilian population (and, at least in the case of Falluja [or here], incendiaries).

  4. Level most of the economic hub of the city or town.

  5. Make grandiose claims about how many 'terrorists' have been killed, and unsupported allegations that a significant percentage of them were foreigners (in Al Qa'im, the local tribes may actually have been fighting to keep the very small number of foreign fighters out [or here], fearing exactly the kind of Falluja-style attack that they received).

  6. Seal the town off from journalists (and humanitarian workers) so the lies about the nature of the insurgents and the enormity of the war crimes cannot reach the rest of the world.

  7. Do everything possible to prevent the rebuilding of the town, so its ruins can stand as a warning to others.

  8. While withdrawing as quickly as possible before American casualties get completely out of hand (leaving behind only sufficient troops to man the checkpoints to keep journalists and humanitarian workers out and to prevent the civilians from rebuilding their lives), announce proudly and loudly that the operation was an enormous success.

Needless to say, each of these atrocities provides the fuel for the insurgency. The few foreign agents provocateurs only need cause enough trouble in an area to bait the Americans into such a series of war crimes, and sufficient local insurgents can be created to keep up the resistance indefinitely. The Pentagon is handling this so consistently stupidly, that it is impossible to believe that it is not just fulfilling neocon orders to lead to civil war in Iraq.

Pakistani coincidences

Bernard-henri Levy notes the odd coincidence that Pakistan picks up what it claims to be major al Qaeda operatives just when it needs some PR help in Washington:

"It is as if the Pakistani powers that be have had, ever since Al-Qaida's retreat from Afghanistan and their withdrawal into Karachi, Lahore and Rawalpindi, a precise idea of where the chiefs of Al-Qaida could be found. It is as if Pakistan's formidable intelligence service, the ISI, had not only localized but kept these public enemies of the United States - and theoretically of Pakistan - under observation, handy for periodic culling.

It is as if these people were bargaining chips, with the Pakistanis drawing from their reserves of terrorists and cashing them in one by one, depending on the needs of their relationship with the great American 'friend.'"

It would be even worse if the people Pakistan arrests aren't even the real terrorists. Pakistan could get political points in Washington while simultaneously giving the real terrorists the perfect chance to permanently escape by assuming new identities. After all, who is going to look for somebody who has already been arrested? The fact that the Americans must be aware of these tricks and have decided to play along is just another reason for seeing the American 'war on terror' for the lie that it really is.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

The Oil-for-Food-for-Money-for-Republicans scandal

The Oil-for-Food-for-Money-for-Republicans scandal:

  1. Galloway's smack-down of the U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations is a classic. Two quotes:

    "I told the world that Iraq, contrary to your claims did not have weapons of mass destruction. I told the world, contrary to your claims, that Iraq had no connection to al-Qaeda. I told the world, contrary to your claims, that Iraq had no connection to the atrocity on 9/11 2001. I told the world, contrary to your claims, that the Iraqi people would resist a British and American invasion of their country and that the fall of Baghdad would not be the beginning of the end, but merely the end of the beginning.

    Senator, in everything I said about Iraq, I turned out to be right and you turned out to be wrong and 100,000 people paid with their lives; 1600 of them American soldiers sent to their deaths on a pack of lies; 15,000 of them wounded, many of them disabled forever on a pack of lies."


    "Senator, this is the mother of all smokescreens. You are trying to divert attention from the crimes that you supported, from the theft of billions of dollars of Iraq's wealth.

    Have a look at the real Oil-for-Food scandal. Have a look at the 14 months you were in charge of Baghdad, the first 14 months when $8.8 billion of Iraq's wealth went missing on your watch. Have a look at Halliburton and other American corporations that stole not only Iraq's money, but the money of the American taxpayer.

    Have a look at the oil that you didn't even meter, that you were shipping out of the country and selling, the proceeds of which went who knows where? Have a look at the $800 million you gave to American military commanders to hand out around the country without even counting it or weighing it.

    Have a look at the real scandal breaking in the newspapers today, revealed in the earlier testimony in this committee. That the biggest sanctions busters were not me or Russian politicians or French politicians. The real sanctions busters were your own companies with the connivance of your own Government."

    Every word true.

  2. The essential background reading on the real scandal involving the sanctions is the Joy Gordon article on how the United States and Britain manipulated the sanctions to intentionally kill civilians.

  3. Here are the details of the sloppy cut-and-paste forgery used to frame Galloway (see also here, and note the connection to Chalabi).

  4. The Bush administration knew about the illegal oil sales and kickbacks to Saddam's regime but turned a blind eye to them. In fact, American oil purchases accounted for 52% of the kickbacks. The major instigator was a Houston company named BayOil (and scroll down for the initial work on a possible George Bush connection). The head of BayOil, David Chalmers Jr., is a long-time Republican donor.

  5. Also implicated in the current scandal is Tongsun Park, a Korean CIA agent who was behind the Koreagate scandal, and who has strong ties to the staunchly Republican Unification Church.

  6. Finally, here is a little background on 'family values' guy Norm Coleman, who of course won the seat vacated when the Republicans murdered Paul Wellstone.

I understand that American Senators are a bunch of hypocrites, but do they have to be so obvious about it?

AIPAC details

AIPAC has purported to fire Steve Rosen and Keith Weissman, essentially claiming that the two were rogue employees, who, if they did anything wrong, were acting outside the terms of their employment. This article, which provides elaboration on the cover story that the AIPAC problem relates solely to an FBI sting, contains two bits of useful information in between the PR spin:

  1. the FBI began its investigation of AIPAC just before September 11, 2001, well before Larry Franklin entered the picture, and well before the Iraq war or admitted plans for the Iraq war; and

  2. AIPAC is continuing to pay the attorneys of Rosen and Weissman, incurring legal costs that one source says have reached $1 million!

Monday, May 16, 2005

Dastardly de-occupation delay

It's possible that the recently announced (and seemingly innocuous) three-week delay (or here) in the start of the Israeli de-occupation of Gaza is intended to buy just enough time that the Zionist (American or Israeli) attack on somebody (Iran, Syria, or Saudi Arabia; I'm still not sold on Iran, although it may be that Iran stepped into first place on the Zionist hit list when Syria disappointingly failed to fall into the trap set for it by withdrawing troops from Lebanon) planned for the summer of 2005 will have a chance to start before the Israeli pull-out begins (that would put the start of the attack in July rather than June). The attack would cause enough unrest in the Occupied Territories that the pull-out would have to be postponed 'indefinitely', allowing Sharon his usual trick of taking credit with the Americans for his 'bravery' in moving towards peace, while not giving up an inch and inexorably continuing to close the vice on the Palestinians.

John Bolton's plane scare

When Congress was debating the USA Patriot Act in the fall of 2001, it was not at all clear that it was going to be passed, at least not without substantial modifications. Then came the anthrax attacks, clearly directed at prominent Democrats, and suddenly Bush's legislation sailed right through. Congressmen know a real threat when they see one. The Senate Foreign Relations Committee was to meet this past Thursday to consider the nomination of John Bolton to be United Nations ambassador. It was not at all clear that he was going to make it through the committee, but he did, barely, with an unusual lack of endorsement by the committee. The day before the committee made its decision, there was a significant security scare in Washington. This necessitated the evacuation of government offices, including the White House and the Congress, and many people were sufficiently frightened that they were literally running away. Congressmen were evacuated from the House and Senate floors. There had been a violation of restricted airspace over Washington, and the pilot had failed to respond to warnings to turn away. I suppose you're thinking I'm going to say there was something odd about this:

  1. Despite the fact this was treated as a major terrorist threat to the government of the United States, no one bothered to tell the Commander-in-Chief, a certain Mr. George Bush, who was riding his bike in Maryland, until the incident was all over.

  2. The pilot of the plane, Hayden "Jim" Sheaffer Jr., is said to have panicked and frozen on seeing the warnings given to him by a helicopter and military planes. It was only with the assistance of a student pilot flying with him, Troy D. Martin, a man with only 30 hours flying experience, that they were able to guide the plane out of trouble. This pilot who 'froze' obtained his pilot's license in 1969. He has been described as a 'knowledgeable pilot' who had recently purchased some new maps.

  3. The warnings which he apparently couldn't follow included interception by a helicopter, the dipping of wings by F-16 fighter jets, and the dropping of flares in front of the plane. It was the third set of flares that got his attention.

  4. Both pilot and student pilot were fully aware of the necessity of avoiding the restricted area. The student pilot's wife told the Associated Press that:

    "Troy was discussing with me last night after they made their flight plans all about the no-fly zones and how they were going to avoid them. He said they were going to fly between two different restricted areas."

    Capitol Police Chief Terrance W. Gainer said that officials were concerned because the plane appeared to be "on a straight-in shot toward the center of the Washington area."

  5. From the Washington Post:

    "Within hours of the scare, authorities said that the pilots were lost and disoriented. But the account provided in FAA documents casts Martin in a different light.

    'It shows a tremendous presence of mind to be able to take the training he had and, under a very stressful situation, to bring that aircraft to Frederick,' said Chris Dancy, spokesman for the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, a group representing private pilots."

  6. Press Secretary Scott McClellan confirmed that the plane came within three miles of the White House, and apparently no effort was made to shoot it down. Reporters at the scene actually saw the defending planes overhead, so it is possible that the plane came much closer than three miles from the White House without any real action being taken to stop it.

  7. The pilot is described by a neighbor as "a big President Bush supporter", and as a Republican who campaigned for Bush.

  8. The pilot has not been charged with anything, but could possibly lose his pilot's license, meaning he would have to be tested again to get it back. As the Washington Post puts it:

    "The FAA plans to take the most extreme action against a pilot since new airspace rules were put in place in 2003 and will revoke Sheaffer's pilot certificate, according to aviation officials who spoke on condition of anonymity because the order had not been finalized. The FAA does not plan to take similar action against Martin, 36, because he is a student pilot and does not have a pilot certificate, sources said."

    Had he been anything other than an old white Republican he would have been labeled a 'terrorist' and would never again see the light of day.

So the Senators receive a little warning of their mortality and the following day Bolton oozes through. Why is Bush so gay for Bolton? Jude Wanniski thinks that Bolton at the United Nations will provide Bush with two strategic benefits. Bolton will argue, at upcoming meetings to review the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), that violation by Iran of the terms of the treaty means that it is too easy to avoid compliance, and thus the treaty is outmoded and should be amended to prohibit NPT members from enriching uranium for peaceful purposes, even if they are monitored (as is Iran). Of course, it's Bolton's own mismanagement of proliferation issues that has led to much of the problems with Iran and North Korea. Messing up the NPT will be the first benefit of Bolton's appointment. Since Iran has not violated the treaty, the attempt to claim that it does will be an obvious provocation. Iran may react against this provocation, and whatever Iran does will be used as the American excuse to bomb Iran, which will be the second benefit of Bolton's appointment. John Bolton is Mr. Two-For-One.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Top Secret Sensitive Compartmented Information

From the New York Times (I'm waiting with bated breath for the New York Times story on the Blair cabinet memo that proves that Bush lied about the war in Iraq, a story to be written of course by Judith Miller):

"At one point last summer, Mr. Franklin had agreed to help the government with the investigation before ending his cooperation when it became evident that prosecutors wanted to charge him with a crime. During that time, he made several telephone calls to possible subjects in the case, including one to Mr. Weissman, according to people who have been officially briefed on the case. The call was surreptitiously monitored and recorded by F.B.I. agents.

In the conversation with Mr. Weissman, Mr. Franklin said he had learned that Iran was seeking to encourage or engage in attacks against Israelis in northern Iraq, people who have been officially briefed on the case said. They said that Mr. Weissman told Mr. Rosen of the conversation and that the two men are believed to have passed the information to an Israeli official who was an intelligence officer. It is not clear whether the information was based on actual information or was fabricated to lure the two Aipac officials into incriminating themselves."

This is pro-Israel spin, recycling the old Jerusalem Post story that all Franklin did was pass on information that was concocted as part of a sting operation by FBI anti-Semites to entrap AIPAC. The last quoted line of the New York Times story is just a paraphrase of the line in the Jerusalem Post ("It is unclear whether the 'classified' information was real or bogus."). The story doesn't make much sense on the face of it. Considering the relationship between Israel and the United States, it is impossible to believe that the United States wouldn't inform Israel that Iranian agents were going to attack Israelis in Kurdistan. If that didn't happen, you can be certain that Douglas Feith would have picked up the hotline in his office connected directly to Sharon's office and passed the information on immediately. The AIPAC dudes were smart enough to have seen right through this. The only good that came out of the entrapment story is that it forced the Israelis to admit they were operating in Kurdistan (another scoop by Seymour Hersh, and a story that was immediately and vociferously denied by Israel).

In the continuing saga of Larry Franklin, we always have to remember that Franklin was caught by accident (he wandered unexpectedly into a lunch meeting between the AIPAC dudes and Naor Gilon, a probable Mossad agent who is leaving his Washington cover posting in the Israeli embassy 'for personal reasons'). Whatever he was doing was discovered when the FBI was monitoring AIPAC for some bigger investigation that had already been going on for some time. As I have stated before, considering the huge power that AIPAC wields with both the Bush Administration and Congress, the FBI must have had extremely high-level permission to conduct this investigation. The FBI would only obtain this permission if its suspicions of AIPAC were held with a great degree of certainty and related to matters of the utmost importance regarding American intelligence and security. To put it in context, the Franklin issue is tiny compared to the greater AIPAC issue, but what Franklin allegedly did was disclose very classified information. From Newsday:

"Intelligence sources said the classification - Top Secret Sensitive Compartmented Information - was often used to protect information from electronic surveillance where disclosure might tip off a foreign government that its communications were being monitored."

This is an extremely high level of classification (a classification above 'Top Secret'). The Israelis would have wanted it, not for the content of the information (the focus on content is the Israeli spin), but because it would allow them to determine the American spy network in Iran, information they could have sold or traded to the Iranians (just as they traded the information obtained by Pollard to the Soviets). It is difficult to understand why Franklin would risk disclosure of this information to protect a few Israeli spies in Kurdistan, particularly when such disclosure, if caught, might result in a penalty as high as his execution. From the AIPAC point of view, however, this may have just been another part of the ongoing Israeli dissection of the complete American spy networks in the Middle East. If Israel has already traded this information away, or used it in its covert campaign in Iraq to lead to civil war, it would explain why the Americans seem completely to lack intelligence in Iran, and seem to have no effective counterintelligence operations in Iraq. If Franklin did anything wrong, we must not forget that his is a small part of the greater AIPAC espionage story.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Behind the Iraqi civil war

From an article (or here) by James Janega from Knight Ridder (which remains the only honest newspaper chain in the United States; my emphasis in bold):

"The Marines who swept into the Euphrates River town of Ubaydi confronted an enemy they had not expected to find - and one that attacked in surprising ways.

As they pushed from house to house in early fighting, trying to flush out the insurgents who had attacked their column with mortar fire, they ran into sandbagged emplacements behind garden walls. They found a house where insurgents were crouching in the basement, firing upwards through slits hacked at ankle height in the ground-floor walls, aiming at spots that the Marines' body armor did not cover.

The shock was that the enemy was not supposed to be in this town at all. Instead, American intelligence indicated that the insurgency had massed on the other side of the river. Marine commanders expressed surprise Monday not only at the insurgents' presence but also the extent of their preparations, as if they had expected the Marines to come."

How do the insurgents always know when the Americans will show up? How did they know just what hotel room to fire at when Wolfowitz was in Baghdad? How do they know exactly when and where to deploy their improvised explosive devices so they are in place just before the Americans drive by?

Larry Franklin talked to the AIPAC dudes almost two years ago. What's the one thing he could have told them two years ago which would be still grievously affecting the ability of the American army to deal with the insurgency in Iraq? The Israelis are able to assist the insurgents because they know the details of the Saddam-era and post-Saddam-era American counterintelligence operations in Iraq. As the spies for the insurgency are able to avoid the American counterintelligence assets in Iraq (and may have even 'turned' some of them), the Americans have no way to root out those who are gathering information on American plans. The agents of the insurgency are able to consistently spy on the American occupying army, and know what the Americans are going to do before most of the Americans know. This explains why the insurgents are clearly winning.

Why would supposed American ally Israel want to help the insurgency, or at least part of it? Based on the ideas of Oded Yinon, the plan is to break Iraq up into small, unthreatening mini-states. The Israelis are trying to start an Iraqi civil war. To this end, the Israelis are hoping to pin the Americans in Iraq for as long as possible in a vain attempt to prevent this war. The Americans will only pull out when civil war is inevitable, which will be another huge embarrassment for the Pentagon. On top of that, the slow American defeat in Iraq, based on the perfidity of the Israelis in supporting the insurgency and undermining American counterintelligence in Iraq, is gradually destroying the American military (although no one in the Bush Administration will admit it). This effort means the Israelis are effectively currently engaged in war operations against the United States. This undeclared war by the greatest ingrate in the world, Israel - hundreds of billions of dollars in aid from American taxpayers to Israel, and this is the thanks they get! - has made the paleocons furious, and explains why the neocons have been unable to stop the AIPAC investigation.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

The price of a pardon

Chalabi stole $230 million from Jordan and will be pardoned for it. This is a real steal of a pardon, as it only cost the United States $100 million.

Larry Franklin and Mr. X

From an article on Steve Rosen, former policy director of AIPAC, who believes he is going to be indicted:

"Rosen has told contacts that he is convinced the government is still looking for 'Mr. X' or 'Agent X' — an alleged Israeli master spy in the United States. Jewish communal officials have said they believe the FBI has been seeking a 'Mr. X' since the Jonathan Pollard spy scandal in the 1980s."

Sounds like a John le Carré novel. 'Mr. X' is probably 'Mega', who was supposed to be a Clinton Administration official, but of course couldn't be if they were looking for him prior to the Clinton Administration. If they are still looking, he (or she) must be an official or other figure close to power who has been around through all the American political shifts from the time of Pollard up to today. It might even be a prominent public commentator who dabbles in intelligence and politics. The importance of the search for the spymaster might explain why AIPAC appears to have lost some of its teflon coating. You have to wonder if Pollard remains in jail because the Americans are still upset that Mega or Mr. X is still in full operation.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Gorilla explanation?

Gorilla explanation? I hope the FBI is still digging. Have you noticed that the Larry Franklin story as it has been explained in the media still doesn't really make any sense?

Pakistani striptease

Pakistan has arrested yet another man said to be a high-ranking member of al Qaeda. This is starting to form a familiar pattern. The new capture is Abu Faraj al-Libbi, said to be third in the al Qaeda hierarchy. Bush said:

". . . al-Libbi was a top general for [Osama] bin Laden . . . a major facilitator and a chief planner for the al-Qaida network. His arrest removes a dangerous enemy who is a direct threat to America."

He is described as operations chief for al Qaeda, having taken over for captured Khalid Sheikh Mohammed. As usual, problems abound:

  1. The whole story of the capture of al-Libbi appears to have been made up by Pakistani authorities. Instead of a two-day gun battle at a farmhouse, it was a quick, relatively uneventful police chase in an urban area. Pakistani authorities apparently received a tip-off after American agents intercepted a mobile phone call made by al-Libbi. How, one might ask, did the Americans know that this was al-Libbi's phone? If it was a satellite phone, why was al-Libbi using a system al Qaeda must know has been compromised by the Americans? Other accounts downplay the phone and say the arrest was based on human intelligence. There are also the usual discrepancies on when he was arrested. It has even been described as a cross-dressing arrest!

  2. According to European intelligence experts, al-Libbi is not third in command in the al Qaeda hierarchy, but just a low-level operative. A former close associate of bin Laden now living in London said: 'What I remember of him is he used to make the coffee and do the photocopying.' He was neither on the FBI's most wanted list, nor on the State Department's 'rewards for justice' program, an odd oversight if he was the main guy after bin Laden and al-Zahawari. It is possible that the Americans confused - intentionally or otherwise - another Libyan on the FBI's list, Anas al-Liby (or al-Libbi), who may be an important figure in al Qaeda, with the man Pakistan captured. The captured man was probably involved in two assassination attempts on Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf.

  3. From Time (see also here):

    "U.S. counterterrorism officials told TIME that the CIA suspects al-Libbi was involved in a terrorist plot timed to coincide with last November's U.S. presidential election, including 'training and supporting people and planning to send operatives' who could slip into the U.S. 'He was a key operations guy,' says the source. 'His operations weren't confined to Afghanistan or Pakistan but extended into the West.'"

    They really lay it on thick, don't they?

  4. Remember how the Americans would capture some Iraqi functionary and suddenly he would be added to the deck of cards or move greatly up the deck in terms of importance? At the very least, this appears to have happened with al-Libbi. This is referred to as 'grade inflation'.

  5. Prominent Pakistani arrests tend to be announced when foreign officials are in Pakistan. Gen. John Abizaid, the chief of the U.S. Central Command, and Gen. Mike Jackson, the British chief of general staff, were both visiting Pakistan when the arrest was announced.

  6. Same guy?

Readers of this blog may remember that I've been down this road before, with the arrests of Amjad Farooqi and Khalid Shaikh Mohammed. The supposed capture of Khalid Shaikh Mohammed was particularly weird. Pakistan has been engaging in what B. Raman (or here) refers to as the 'al Qaeda striptease', a process of slowly capturing or pretending to capture al Qaeda operatives as and when required to manage the relationship with the United States by pretending to assist in fighting the 'war on terror'. Now that they're down to the level of the guys who make the coffee, there must be thousands of 'high level' operatives yet to be captured before Pakistan is down to its knickers.

Monday, May 09, 2005

Gorilla resurrection

According to someone named 'Brian' posting on the site Gorilla in the Room:

"It appears that the original 'Gorilla' has deleted his blog. This is a tremendous loss. He was obviously very smart and well connected. He certainly predicted that Franklin would face charges long before such an outcome was certain.

I created this blog to prevent anyone else from using the name. My immediate goal is a) to reconstruct the old blog using cached google files, and b) continue to provide links that are on topic.

Unfortunately, I will not have anything close to the insight of the real Gorilla. If he can contact me I will happily give the blog back to him.

Why did he delete the blog? My guess is that his identity was discovered and the blog created problems for him at work."

Odd. The technical mechanics of this raises some questions. Generally speaking, if you leave your Blogspot blog untouched it will just sit there (forever?). A commentator named 'anonymous' wrote:

"Let me get this straight. The original Gorilla dropped the site and someone else just took over without any formal arrangement with the originator of the blog? Interesting. Ideally, the originator of the blog would return, but if you keep up the site with relevant links then good for you."

You can read into that what you will, but 'Brian' seems to be making an honest effort to reconstruct the site. 'Brian' appears to have another site, Bull's Eye on Immigration, which is anti-immigration. Gorilla in the Room was a necessary site on the malign influence of Zionism and Israel on American politics, and it is more important than ever that it, or something like it, continue. What we don't need is a conspiracy about a conspiracy-theory blog.

they had flowers in their minds

Douglas Feith is interviewed by Jeffrey Goldberg. Although Feith is obviously batshit crazy ("they had flowers in their minds"), he does seem to have a good handle on that part of reality which relates to what the world thinks of him. He says that the thesis of Administration critics:

". . . is that we were a bunch of people intent on going to war with Iraq no matter what. September 11th was a pretext. We believed that it would be easy, that we were linked up to Chalabi who was arguing that it would be easy and there would not be problems in the aftermath, and so for that reason nobody planned for anything hard, and when it turned out to be hard we were left without a plan."

That sounds about right. On the issue of Greater Israel, Goldberg writes:

"Feith's library includes a large selection of books on Zionism, but he did not linger there. 'I'm not looking to aggravate a distortion about me,' Feith said. The distortion, he said, is that his religion, or at least his longtime support for right-wing Israeli leaders, has affected his policy recommendations to Rumsfeld. Feith dismisses this criticism as a willful misunderstanding of his motives. 'My interest in democratization predates the focus on the Middle East,' he says. Rumsfeld, for his part, derides the idea that the Administration was manipulated by its sub-Cabinet-level Jewish officials. 'I suppose the implication of that is that the President and the Vice-President and myself and Colin Powell just fell off a turnip truck to take these jobs,' he said."

Notice how Rumsfeld doesn't answer the question (has Rumsfeld ever answered a question?). Feith is indisputably an extreme right-wing ultra-Zionist, and has left a considerable body of evidence to prove it. Feith will always be remembered for the lies produced by his Office of Special Plans, and for those Israeli generals who obviously knew the way to his office and who, unlike everyone else, did not have to sign in.

Galloway's obstacles

George Galloway's campaign manager, Ron McKay, describes some of the dirty tricks, biased journalism, and outright vote fraud that Galloway had to overcome on his way to victory (not to mention some real Islamofascists who believe voting is a sin). You can see by the stupid opinions held on Galloway by otherwise smart people how easy it is for the press to seriously defame a man if they make a concerted effort to lie about him. Galloway had all the press against him, all 'educated' opinion, all the celebrities against him, and was running against a popular MP who had won the last election by 10000 votes. I now have to go out and burn all my Billy Bragg CD's.

Sunday, May 08, 2005

Gannon Kloberg PDB

The thesis of this colorful tale, if you read between the lines just a little bit, is that Jeff Gannon, during his many mysterious visits to the White House, obtained copies of Presidential Daily Briefings, which he then passed on to flamboyant Washington lobbyist Edward Joseph von Kloberg, who then sold information in them to Pakistan and North Korea. Kloberg was recently found dead on the ground beside (or here) the Castel Sant'Angelo in Rome, from which he is said to have jumped, with a magazine in his pocket that had on its cover a picture of him receiving an award from former U.S. President George H.W. Bush. Even if you choose not to believe the most colorful parts of the colorful tale (probably a good idea, although the 'suicide' of someone like Kloberg raises a lot of questions), there is a nice biography of Gannon, together with the explanation of how Gannon fell into the right conservative circles to end up in the White House.

Saturday, May 07, 2005

Galloway's triumph

Some days there seems to be nothing to write about, but this isn't one of those days. Moussaoui's plea, England's plea, Larry Franklin, the odd arrest in Pakistan, the 'smoking gun' of the Iraq war, North Korea, the murders of Razicka and Calipari, Syria . . . the list goes on and on. But I thought I'd mention the splendid election of George Galloway. Here is a good little summary of Galloway's recent trials and tribulations in the fight for truth and decency:

"Special congratulations must go to ex Labour MP, George Galloway. He was the first MP [of any party] brave enough to stand up in Parliament and call Blair a liar, straight to his face - long before Michael Howard did. What a price Galloway paid, though. The 'Dept of Dirty Tricks' sprung into overdrive. M16 helped Blair's government do its worst. In Galloway they found a man who took the gloves off; a bare knuckle, political street-fighter if ever there was one. He couldn't be allowed to go on the way he was - daring to take on and expose the stinking 'system'. Not for him the old school style, debating society. He said it how it was. He pulled no punches. Had he been in America, he'd have been 'Wellstoned' - take my word for it.

For his pains, he was vilified then crucified. All manner of allegations of treason, etc, were hurled at him by the Blair bunch. Documents 'proving' he was on Saddam's payroll were 'found' - in the rubble of Iraq. Documents which were later proved to be forgeries. They'd been 'found', just like the infamous passport atop the WTC , 9/11 rubble. The Iraq 'find' was made 'accidentally' by a journalist, who just happened to work for the shadowy 'establishment's' [un]official organ - The Daily Telegraph. Later, after assassinating Galloway's character and horribly humiliating the man himself, he was denied the Labour whip, and kicked out of the party.

Well, he went away, licked and healed his wounds, then planned his revenge. He started a new, virtually one-man-band, party - the anti-war party "Respect". Last night, he returned to parliament, in triumph. He ousted a sitting New-Labour MP; a real Blair-Babe. In his acceptance speech, he was as bold as ever: 'This is for Iraq, Tony Blair,' he said. He also railed about 'All the lives you [Blair] have lost. All the lies you have told.' Adding: 'The best thing the Labour Party can do - is sack [fire] you!'"

Galloway won a big libel judgment against the embarrassing Daily Telegraph. Here is his acceptance speech.

For his anti-war efforts and the fact that he is a true socialist - a group of human being vilified as evildoers and commies in the United States and unrecognized in Britain as the populace has been confused into thinking that the members of the neo-liberal globalist Blair Labour Party are 'socialists' - he is still being called such things as an 'islamofascist' (note the stupid comments by this usually smart blogger, and the even stupider comments from a 'guest' at Talking Points Memo, a blog with the single worst collection - with the notable exception of Harry Shearer - of guest bloggers in the so-called blogosphere). The usually smart Jeremy Paxman seems to feel that Galloway is some kind of racist because the woman he beat is black, a woman who voted in favor of Blair's illegal and immoral and racist attack against the Iraqi people! The unstated view is that British Muslims shouldn't be allowed to vote (the only Muslims who deserve to vote are in . . . Iraq!).

The British people voted intelligently, rebuking Blair but avoiding the trap of falling again into the foul cesspool of Thatcherism. Despite his contrite words, however, Blair won't leave unless he is pushed, and there is an extremely serious danger of his playing the poodle again for Bush. Bush's next war will be preceded by an atrocity, probably either an assassination of a senior American official or a 'terrorist' attack against American civilians or a large group of American soldiers. Just like September 11, this will be followed almost immediately by an FBI identification of the identities of the 'terrorists', who will all turn out to be intelligence agents of the next country on the Bush-Zionist list of victims of American aggression. Blair will claim that he has no choice but to send British troops to fight against this outrage, and the Iraq debacle will be repeated. This poodle-ing will destroy the Labour Party for generations, and doom the British people to the predations of the Conservatives. Unless the members of the Labour Party get off their sorry asses and get rid of Blair as quickly as is decently possible, they are dooming their country, not to mention their party. Most politicians will never have another job as good as the one they have as an elected politician, and if they leave Blair around for any length of time he will ensure that they never have a chance to be reelected. Once he is out of power, the world can start to prepare for his war crimes trial.

Friday, May 06, 2005

'Cons in Korea

The United States is starting to prepare for war against North Korea by gradually moving planes and ships into the area. The Korea Herald quotes a Korean military officer on condition of anonymity:

"Though the U.S. military says the deployments are part of rotations planned beforehand and unrelated to any particular threat, the updated capabilities as well as current military capabilities are remarkable."

This may just be part of the negotiation strategy, but it will be interesting to see how quickly the escalation of military preparedness continues as the negotiations drag on.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Today, and a year, in Iraq

There is an excellent paragraph-by-paragraph analysis at Today in Iraq of Bush's May 1, 2003 speech announcing the end of major combat operations in Iraq. The sheer quantity of lies and pure bullshit packed into this short speech is incredible. The analysis ends with a list of the dead American soldiers in Iraq. Blogs aren't big enough for a list of the 100,000 or 120,000 or so dead Iraqis, even if the Pentagon cared enough to keep a record of their names.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

The Blair strategy of lies

A few more details on Blair's strategy of lies:

  1. From Paul O'Neill and Richard Clark, we know that Bush was planning a regime change in Iraq immediately after his inauguration (O'Neill said it was 'topic A' 10 days after the inauguration). The neocons needed to get a few preliminaries out of the way, including their Perle harbor of September 11 and the training-wheels war in Afghanistan, before they could set up for a war on Iraq, but it was always inevitable. Apparently it was also always inevitable that Britain would participate (we don't know, and may never know, whether this is due to some secret treaty, or just globalist Blair following orders from the Powers That Be). It appears that British authorities were approached no later than March 2002 with their instructions to participate, and the Blair-Bush April 2002 meeting just sealed the deal. From the Guardian:

    "That regime change was an objective of the prime minister appears clear from a document leaked last year. It records Sir David Manning, the prime minister's foreign policy adviser, writing to Mr Blair about a meeting with Condoleezza Rice, then President George Bush's national security adviser, on March 14 2002, a year before the war. Sir David reported: 'I said that you would not budge in your support for regime change but you had to manage a press, a parliament and a public opinion'.

    Another document leaked last year records Sir Christopher Meyer, British ambassador to the US at the time, as telling Sir David on March 18 2003, the eve of the invasion, about a meeting with the US deputy defence secretary, Paul Wolfowitz. He said: "I opened by sticking very closely to the script that you used with Condi Rice. We backed regime change, but the plan had to be clever and failure was not an option."

    Rice raised the issue in mid-March 2002, and the 'script' remained the same up to the time of the invasion. Manning's memo proves that Blair had talked to Rice before March 14, as Manning confirmed to Rice that Blair would not 'budge' in his support. The fact that the British were approached in March or earlier probably explains why a Foreign Office opinion on the matter was issued in March.

  2. A number of months passed, in which the Americans started to get ready for the political framework for the war. The Bush Administration PR masters don't like the summer as a time to sell anything, so the PR attack had to await the fall. Judith Miller composed fairy tales about aluminum tubes, a story which appeared on September 8, and was immediately picked up by Dick Cheney. This constituted the official American beginning of the lying basis for the war.

  3. While the Americans spent the spring and summer of 2002 building their set of lies, Blair was apparently instructed to begin the process of creating the British lies, and thus we see the July 2002 War Cabinet meeting. There are a couple of telling quotes from the minutes of this meeting (my emphasis in bold):

    "C reported on his recent talks in Washington. There was a perceptible shift in attitude. Military action was now seen as inevitable. Bush wanted to remove Saddam, through military action, justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD. But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy. The NSC had no patience with the UN route, and no enthusiasm for publishing material on the Iraqi regime's record. There was little discussion in Washington of the aftermath after military action."


    "The Foreign Secretary said he would discuss this with Colin Powell this week. It seemed clear that Bush had made up his mind to take military action, even if the timing was not yet decided. But the case was thin. Saddam was not threatening his neighbours, and his WMD capability was less than that of Libya, North Korea or Iran."

    Amazing stuff, absolutely confirming all the worst things said by those who opposed the war. After this meeting, it was decided to work on three prongs for building the political case:

    • try to manipulate Saddam into refusing the weapons inspectors;

    • build the factual case for war based on weapons of mass destruction; and

    • set Goldsmith to work on a legal opinion.

    The first didn't work as Saddam refused to fall for the trick and allowed the inspectors to do their jobs. The construction of the factual case started with the late-September release of the 'September dossier' (the 'dodgy dossier' came out in February 2003). Finally, Goldsmith started work on the opinion, but Blair, knowing that Goldsmith was still influenced by the Foreign Office opinion, didn't want to hear his formal advice until he was sure that it would be a rubber-stamp approval of the war he had signed on for in April 2002.

  4. In the February 2003 American woodshedding of Goldsmith, he met with no fewer than five Bush Administration lawyers: Alberto Gonzales, then Bush's chief legal adviser; William Taft IV, chief legal adviser to the then Secretary of State Colin Powell; Jim Haynes, chief legal adviser to Donald Rumsfeld; John Bellinger, chief legal adviser to Condoleezza Rice; and then U. S. Attorney General, John Ashcroft. Wow! No wonder he was walking funny when he came back to London. Despite all the free legal advice, he still wasn't able to deliver the clean legal opinion that Blair wanted and the British military insisted upon, which is why he was sent off to be worked over by Lord Falconer and Baroness Morgan (who were then kind enough to write his opinion for him).

  5. On BBC1's Breakfast with Frost, Blair said:

    "The idea that we had decided definitively for military action at that stage is wrong, and disproved by the fact that several months later we went back to the UN to get a final resolution, and actually the conflict didn't begin until four months after that."

    Blair's logic only follows if, after failing to obtain the resolution, he called off British participation in the attack. In fact, it is clear from the pressure put on Goldsmith that the only reason Blair tried to get a resolution is that he feared that he couldn't budge Goldsmith from his reliance on the March 2002 Foreign Office opinion that the attack was illegal. The massive pressure put on Goldsmith was necessary because Blair wasn't going to get the UN resolution.

A Conservative victory as a result of Blair's lies would be a disaster for Britain, and it must be noted that the Conservatives were more in favor of war than was Labour (the Conservatives are simply idiots for turning down such a solid gold election issue). It would be nice, however, it the British electorate embarrasses Blair enough so that the Labour Party can finally do what it should have done before the election, and throw the lying poodle out on his ass.