Monday, October 31, 2005

Rummy flu

F. William Engdahl on the current bird flu scam (or here):

"Tamiflu was developed and patented in 1996 by a California biotech firm, Gilead Sciences Inc. Gilead is a NASDAQ (GILD) listed stock company which prefers to maintain a low profile in the current rush to Tamiflu. That might be because of who is tied to Gilead. In 1997, before he became US Secretary of Defense, Donald H. Rumsfeld was named Chairman of the Board of Gilead Sciences, where he remained until early 2001 when he became Defense Secretary. Rumsfeld had been on the board of Gilead since 1988 according to a January 3 1997 company press release.

An as-yet-unconfirmed report is that Rumsfeld while Secretary of Defense also purchased an additional stock in his former company, Gilead Sciences Inc., worth $18 million, making him one of its largest if not the largest stock owners today."

For more on 'Rummy Flu', see here, here, here, here and here.

The panic is a joke. If you're not a chicken, or a chicken farmer, the whole thing is chicken shit. Since it doesn't travel from person to person, there is no real danger at all. The scaremongers say: "Well, it could mutate so it is contagious between people." It could, but it is much, much more likely that some other virus we've never heard of could so mutate. We could also all die when an asteroid hits the earth.

The transparency of the lies about bird flu can be seen in the official response. Governments are paying rich people like Rumsfeld billions of dollars to stock up on useless drugs which don't have any known effect in treating avian flu, when the only way to stop the virus, if that is what you really wanted to do, is pay Asian chicken farmers to destroy their birds. But that would be paying poor people, and the panic and vaccine buying benefits rich people, so we'll panic and buy the vaccine. This reminds me of how the 'peak oil' lie was recently used so successfully to generate record profits for the oil companies. Will we ever learn?

Why was Mehlis picked?

The UN could have picked any prosecutor in the world to investigate the Hariri assassination, but chose a German prosecutor named Detlev Mehlis. Mehlis was the prosecutor of the case of the 1982 bombing of the La Belle Discotheque in West Berlin. This was blamed by Ronald Reagan on Libya, which allowed Reagan to bomb Libya. We can analyze American involvement with Libya with a much more cynical eye now that we have seen so clearly how lies were used to manipulate the attack on Iraq. Mehlis' entire prosecution was heavily manipulated by American, Israeli and West German intelligence agencies, and Mehlis played right along, a fact which presumably made him perfect for the framing of Syria. Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed writes (or here):

"Detlev Mehlis' role in the investigation into the La Belle bombing raises disturbing questions about his role in the investigation of the assassination of Hariri. As Berlin public prosecutor, Mehlis inadvertently but consistently covered up the dubious involvement of US, Israeli and German intelligence interests in the 1986 terrorist attack; actively built a selective politically-motivated case against suspects without objective material proof; while ignoring and protecting a group of suspects with documented connections to western secret services. This background fundamentally challenges the credibility of his investigation of the Hariri assassination."

Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed points out how Mehlis hinged his entire conclusion on one very dubious source, the name of whom Mehlis managed to keep out of the published report:

"An electronic version of Mehlis' report for the UN commission sent to various media outlets identifies Maher Assad, brother of the Syrian president Bashar al-Assad, and their brother-in-law Asef Shawkat, the chief of military intelligence, along with three others, as the key alleged conspirators behind the plot. Yet Mehlis cites as his source for these officials' names – the crux of his report's allegations - a single anonymous Syrian living in Lebanon purportedly in contact with Syrian officers posted there. Explaining why the names were removed in the version transmitted to the Security Council, Mehlis noted the importance of the 'presumption of innocence,' since the entire accusation of Syrian government culpability boiled down to only one anonymous source. 'It could give the wrong impression that this was an established fact', he cautioned.

Indeed, UN sources cited by the respected German newsmagazine Der Spiegel on 22nd October identified Mehlis' central source as Zuheir al-Siddiq, a criminal convicted of fraud and embezzlement, who had clearly lied in his testimony, contradicting himself several times. At first, sources said, he claimed to have left Beirut in the month prior to the assassination of Hariri. In late September, however, he went so far as to admit involvement in the assassination. According to his brother, al-Siddiq was paid a substantial amount by an unidentified third party for his testimony for the Mehlis report. Sources within the UN Commission investigating the Hariri assassination also said that Mehlis had made contact with al-Siddiq through Syrian dissident Riffat al-Assad, an uncle of the incumbent president opposed to the current regime."

The neocons in the Bush Administration have been expressly calling for war against Syria for years, and this leads to the inevitable conclusion regarding the Mehlis report:

"In this context, the Mehlis report provides the Bush and Sharon administrations the ammunition needed to galvanise support for the neoconservative plan for military action against Syria. Given his role in the 1986 La Belle bombing, the possibility remains that his investigation has firstly concealed the role of US and Israeli intelligence interests in relation to the Hariri assassination, and secondly been politicized to support US and Israeli grand regional designs."

Turkey, the EU and secular society

Duncan Cameron on the bigger picture of why Europe has to admit Turkey into the EU:

"Turkey is a secular society that is also almost entirely Muslim. Western societies that have Muslim minorities and want to block Turkey have to understand what is being said if that happens. If a Muslim society cannot enter Europe, then Muslims must find their future with other Muslims. In other words the world must organize itself around religion. Surely this is what the secular revolution in Europe - and in Turkey - was meant to avoid."

Joseph Massad on academic freedom

Via Lenin's Tomb, an excellent article by Joseph Massad on why the Zionists have decided to attack American academic freedom:

"What makes these anti-scholarship attacks possible and popular is the existence of a major discrepancy, even a radical disconnect, between popular knowledge and media coverage about the Palestine/Israel conundrum and established scholarly knowledge about the topic. It is this disconnect that the witch hunters mobilise against scholarship as proof that it is not media and popular knowledge, which defends Israeli policy and Zionism's axioms, that is ideological, but rather academic scholarship which has largely uncovered unsavory facts about both. Thus when young American students who come from ideologically charged homes, schools, and environments, attend university classes about the subject, they mistake established scholarship as pro-Palestinian propaganda, a conclusion that is propped up by the likes of Campus Watch, the David Project, and the Anti-Defamation League, all three organisations who make it part or all their business to attack scholarly criticisms of Israeli policy."

I've noticed that people over the age of twenty-five or thirty accept the full package of Zionist lies about Israel, while younger people are much better informed. This fact has to terrify the Zionists. Massad gives some examples of what scholars have found out that conflicts with the mythology of Israel:

"All respected scholars in the field agree that most or all Palestinians who became refugees in 1948 were expelled directly or indirectly by Israel. The debate that exists is about whether all Palestinian refugees were physically expelled by the Israeli army or that the Israeli army expelled the majority while a minority of refugees fled, not as a direct result of physical force but as an indirect consequence of actions taken by the Israeli army and government which might, or might not, have been deliberately intended to expel them. In contrast, media and popular ideological knowledge in the US still insists that the Palestinians fled on their own, or worse, were called upon to do so by Arab leaders (despite Israeli false claims that Arab leaders called on Palestinians to flee, research has shown that they called upon them to remain steadfast in their homeland) while the Zionists begged them to stay!

Established scholarship enumerates all the racist laws and institutional racist practices in operation in Israel which discriminate between Jews and non-Jews, granting Jews differential rights and privileges over non-Jews, and rendering Israel a racist state by law. Popular and media knowledge, in contrast, depict Israel as a democratic liberal state that treats all its citizens equally. It is also established in scholarship that Israel discriminates against non-European Jews (the majority of the country's Jewish population) and also against recent Russian Jewish immigrants, and has engaged and continues to engage in a racist discourse about them and in unofficial institutional discrimination against them (witness the most recent case of discrimination against Ethiopian Jews in admissions to Israeli universities). In contrast, popular and media knowledge depicts Israel as a place where all Jews are equal. Scholarly knowledge addresses the question of Israel as a quasi-theological state, where religious law governs major aspects of Jewish life and that only Orthodox Judaism is allowed to have religious authority over Jewish citizens to the exclusion of Reform and Conservative Judaism, let alone other Jewish denominations. In contrast, media and popular knowledge depict Israel as a secular state. These are only a few examples of how scholarly knowledge is drastically different from and contradicts media and popular knowledge about key issues regarding Israeli society and history."

Massad goes on to point out that the trick employed by so-called 'liberal' Zionists like Nat Hentoff is to contrast 'good' Arab scholars, who accept some of the American liberal consensus on Israel, with 'bad' Arab scholars, who don't accept any of these lies. Hentoff makes this kind of distinction so he can feel comfortably liberal in enforcing book burning. Unfortunately for the Zionists, 'liberal' or not, the truth is gradually working its way into the consciousness of younger people who will eventually constitute the majority of the voting population. The current fascination of Zionists with book burning represents their realization that they have already lost and the truth has escaped their grasp.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Unhappy Fitzmas

I've seen a few attempts to make the best of it, but Fitzmas was an absolute slam-dunk victory for the neocons. 60 years? Libby won't do 60 minutes. It's actually the best thing that ever happened to him. He'll be pardoned and have to spend a few years out of obvious political activity, during which time he'll be given millions of dollars for his valiant services to the Cause, but will be all ready to return in triumph to the Cheney administration, when he can destroy whatever of the world is still left. Libby doesn't have to turn over anybody in the Administration because he knows he won't do any time. Just like in the Mafia, a conviction adds to your prestige.

Why did Fitzgerald not go after anyone for the substantive crime itself? My guess is that he couldn't prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Plame was actually undercover. According to former CIA officer Larry Johnson, the CIA was worried that Plame may have been outed to the Russians by Aldrich Ames. What did they do in response? They brought her back to the states but continued to send her on undercover work to Europe. This is completely incoherent. Did they think there was a 50% chance that her identity had been revealed so they decided to cut her undercover work by 50%? Here's Ledeen on the matter (and he's right!):

". . . I entirely agree with those who have said that Fitzgerald has introduced an entirely different rationale into this process. He was supposed to determine if anyone had outed a covert operative. In this indictment, and in his press conference, he just said that her identity was classified, and so he wants to prosecute people for improper use of classified information. I expect the defense will have fun with that one. Is it criminal to say that so and so works at CIA? If so, a lot of normal people and even some journalists should be prosecuted forthwith."

Here's Fitzgerald himself:

"Prior to July 14, 2003, Valerie Wilson's employment status was classified. Prior to that date, her affiliation with the CIA was not common knowledge outside the intelligence community. Disclosure of classified information about an individual's employment by the CIA has the potential to damage the national security in ways that range from preventing that individual's future use in a covert capacity, to compromising intelligence-gathering methods and operations, and endangering the safety of CIA employees and those who deal with them, the indictment states."

Note how carefully written this is, and that it has nothing to do with proving the charges Fitzgerald would have to prove ('covert' is the missing word). It is as if Fitzgerald is trying to cleverly combine the charges he meant to bring with espionage charges, something he can get away with in a press conference but not something he can get away with in court (note the same trick is tried by the lefties here). The many inconsistencies in the CIA story would allow any good defense attorney to tear the whole basis of the charge, that Plame really was undercover, to shreds.

The only important recent thinking on Plamegate is at Think Progress, where Jennifer Palmieri points out that George Tenet requested and got a meeting with Bush on June 2, 2004, resigned with no good reason ever being given, later that day Bush lawyered up for the first time on Plamegate, and a few days later Cheney was interviewed by Fitzgerald. Palmieri writes:

"What could account for this confluence of events? Had Tenet found himself in the uncomfortable position of having to tell Fitzgerald some damaging information about the Vice President and thought he needed to leave the Administration because of it? Did Tenet deliver some bad news to Bush the evening he met with him that would prompt the White House to feel the need to announce that the President had sought outside legal counsel? It's speculation, but there is no denying that the timing is curious.

Tenet must have told Bush that he told Fitzgerald that he was the one who told Cheney about Plame (although I note that the fact it was Tenet who told Cheney is still being denied by 'several former intelligence officials', a denial which is consistent with my theory that this whole matter is a CIA conspiracy). Tenet was thus in an impossible conflict between his duties to the Bush Administration and his duties to the CIA, and had to resign. The fact that Bush immediately had to lawyer up may mean that he had not been aware of what Cheney had been up to, or it may mean that Bush was for the first time made aware that he could not contain the situation once the Tenet cat was out of the bag. It can't be a coincidence that Tenet required an emergency resignation, without reasons, and Bush immediately needed a lawyer.

The lesson from all this for the American left?: stop putting all your political hopes on a Republican prosecutor appointed by John Ashcroft, get the crooked voting machine problem fixed (absolute job one!), and try to win an election or two.

Friday, October 28, 2005

The NFW response

I think I have exactly the same reason for objecting to the official story of the Pentacrash and the conspiracy theory that the two WTC towers were pulled down. The NFW response. In the case of the Pentagon, I'm supposed to believe that a guy who demonstrably couldn't fly a Cessna two weeks before flew Flight 77 through a 270 degree turn, and then brought it down perfectly to leave the entry hole exactly at the ground level. He flew a plane with wings, a tail, and a twenty-four foot wide fuselage through a fifteen-foot wide hole, leaving no other damage on the facade of the building, and no appreciable wreckage outside of the building. Then all the remains of the plane inside the building disappeared, except for enough human DNA to identify all but one of the passengers, the sole unidentified person being one of the hijackers. You know what I say to that? No Fucking Way!

In the case of the controlled demolition of the Pentagon, I'm supposed to believe that literally tons of explosives were delivered half way up, with nobody seeing anything, in each of two towers. Controlled demolition is a very tricky process, risky at the best of times, and never before tried on a building of this type or size, and certainly never before tried by demolition half-way up, but the conspirators were confident that they would succeed. They had to be really confident, as if they didn't succeed they would leave behind a hell of a lot of evidence. They also had to be confident that the buildings would each fall straight down, although such a demolition had never been tried before, and even much less ambitious demolitions often behave in unpredictable ways. Then they managed to pull off perfect demolitions in each of the two towers within an hour of each other, with the buildings falling exactly on their respective footprints. I'm sorry, but you know what I say to that? No Fucking Way! That is much, much, much less plausible than even the Official Story. There are no doubt many reasons to question the Official Story, but coming up with an even sillier alternative is no help at all.

Ames outed Plame

Scroll down here for an interview by Wolf Blitzer with former CIA officer Larry Johnson. Johnson confirms that Plame had already been outed by Aldrich Ames. He also says that, as a result of the Novak outing, she had received death threats from al-Qaeda, but that the CIA had not offered her any protection but had suggested she call 911! This stuff is just too funny. By the way, if Libby is the only one indicted, and is indicted for lying rather than anything substantive, the Bush Administration will be able to spin it as lies told by a dedicated public servant attempting to keep partisan political attacks from preventing the Bush Administration from protecting Americans from the threat of terrorism.

Mossad passports

Via Gorilla in the Room, Israel has inadvertently admitted (or here) that the Mossad was operating in New Zealand last year attempting to obtain a nice clean New Zealand passport for one of its agents. The systematic misuse by the Mossad of the passports of New Zealand, Australia and Canada is one of the great scandals of diplomacy (see here and here and here and here and here and here and here), endangering the citizens of those countries by associating them with the illegal activities of the Mossad, but only New Zealand has had the balls to really complain about it. Countries like Canada obviously care more about relations with local Jewish lobbyists than they do about the welfare of their own citizens.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Pollari's Ledeenlessness

I've read the La Repubblica investigation of the Niger uranium documents (translation by Nur al-Cubicle here and here and here, or reprinted a little more legibly at Cannonfire here and here and here). Pollari's story puts all the blame for the stovepiping of the documents on himself, SISME and Stephen Hadley, thus completely absolving Ledeen and all his neocon homeboys. Ledeen is mentioned, but not in a dangerous way, and Pollari effectively backs up Ledeen's story that he had nothing to do with the documents. Hadley is the designated scapegoat, and even has an out as Pollari is depicted as having deceived Hadley. Neat. I wonder what Pollari and Berlusconi are going to get for this.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Comments on comments

I wasn't at all surprised to see a very negative reaction to my comments that the CIA was behind Plamegate, as there seems to be a huge pent-up anger around the world that the neocons should be punished for what they did. No CIA distractions are to get in the way of divine retribution! If anyone actually goes to trial on the main issue as opposed to the cover-up - and I wouldn't be a bit surprised if on Fitzmas morning all the lefties find they got lumps of coal - we might actually get to hear the defense arguments, which will include questions concerning what Tenet was doing telling Cheney about Plame, the real connection between Wilson's trip and his marriage to Plame, and how undercover Plame actually was. We'll have to wait and see. In any event, the scapegoats won't stop the neocon project, and everybody who is convicted will get a commemorative gift box containing a Presidential Pardon, a Presidential Medal of Freedom, and a big sack of money. That's real Fitzmas!

I was quite surprised to see the anger over my comments about the WTC tower collapses, which really doesn't strike me as being much of an issue. The vast majority of engineers have no scientific problem with what happened, and I can't see any motive to gild the lily. Unlike the Pentacrash, there is not one shred of physical evidence against the Official Story. I have not seen any videos that convince me that they didn't just fall down. WTC 7 is a completely separate issue, and still lacks a convincing reason for it having collapsed as a result of the minimal damage it appears to have suffered.

I call 'regime change' on you

William Bowles eviscerates the Mehlis Report on the Hariri assassination (I couldn't get his link to the report to work, but it is available all over the internet, including, in a very annoying but complete zip file, here), concluding:

"Due to the vague nature of the Report, the fact that it is incomplete and because of its unsubstantiated and politically loaded implications, it is possible for any and all conclusions to be drawn from it, which is precisely what the media and politicians have done and why it takes the form that it does. There could be no clearer example of the relationship between propaganda and the press than the Mehlis Report, serving as it does as a backdrop to USUK machinations in the region, partially to draw attention away from the disastrous situation in Iraq and also to 'soften up' the public for any potential moves against Syria.

What the report does is create the context for the inflammatory and threatening statements made by US secretary of state Condi Rice, US ambassador to the UN Bolton, Jack Straw, British foreign secretary and the Israeli government, all of whom have, in no uncertain terms used the UN Report as a justification for 'regime change' in Syria."

It used to be, as recently as Lockerbie (not that Libya had anything to do with Lockerbie, but that's another matter), that these matters were treated as criminal international law matters, and trials were held. Now, under the new American law, if a country does something you don't like, you can call 'regime change', which apparently results in your self-appointed right to do anything and everything against the civilian population of the country, including 'shock and awe' and violent oppressive occupation, in order to force a change in government. Since the Americans and Israelis are allowed to call 'regime change' based on a shoddy report which proves nothing at all, there really is no such thing as national sovereignty anymore.

Controlled demolition

There is an excellent series of letters in Undernews concerning the collapse of the two World Trade Center towers. Here is one of them (scroll down):

"The videos of the planned demolitions raises one question above all others, why did the WTC towers collapse from the top down while all controlled demolitions occur from the bottom up? The WTC collapse was in exactly an opposite sequence of a controlled demolition. In a controlled demo the lowest supports are blown out and the building falls straight down inward. In the WTC case the collapse occurs top down in succession. The reason for this is contained in engineering based reports on the WTC building failures.

Since the idea of charges being used to destroy the towers presupposes conspiracy one must ask what would be the motive? The collapse of the towers added only an exclamation point on the attack. While it certainly added to the death count if that was the aim then bringing the towers down very soon after the plane strikes could have raised the death toll towards 20,000. The towers left standing as ruined hulks would have been an even more powerful image especially since they would have persisted for months if not years. The difficulty and risks of placing charges would have been huge. Many people would have been involved, Discovery was eminently possible. And again one must ask, why take all the risk for the sake of redundancy."

Here is the comment of the editor:

"For our part, we believe it highly likely that hundreds of people lost their lives because of the way the buildings were constructed - including inadequate fireproofing and excessive space without vertical support. The buildings were exempted from the New York City building code and fire engineers, among others, have expressed concern about this but have received little attention. We are also bothered by the way the structural evidence was prematurely removed from the scene and by the unexplained explosions (without any assumptions as to what caused them.)"

I think the main reason people want to believe that explosive charges were used is that it makes the scenario less frightening. Nobody wants to face the fact that any given tall building might have been improperly constructed or designed, and might collapse under relatively little stress. In the case of the World Trade Center, the towers were constructed inside the legal framework of the Port Authority for the specific purpose of avoiding having to comply with the building code. That's a real conspiracy. For my part, I'd like to know why the controlled demolition theorists are considered to be the sane ones, valiant researchers whose work is undermined by the crazy people like me who think that Flight 77 didn't hit the Pentagon.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

The ground war in Syria has begun

Syria is in grave danger of attack and destruction by the United States, and Iran isn't, simply because the neocons take their marching orders from Israel, and the Likudniks want regime change in Syria, and the ultimate destruction of that country. The secular Syrian government, with its strong ties to pan-Arab nationalism, is the biggest nightmare for the Likudniks, and it is no accident that the two first targets, Iraq and Syria, were both secular governments which fought internal religious strife from Islamists by appealing to Arab identity. The sudden withdrawal of American troops from Iraq, after a suitable time to prepare the country for civil war, including the use of agents provocateurs, was the plan all along, in order to lead to the civil war which will break up Iraq into warring factions, and eventually create the Shi'ite empire led by Iran which is intended to be the new de facto Israeli ally. The similar plan for Syria is to break off the Kurdish east and give it to the new Israeli ally called Kurdistan, and allow for the new Syrian government to be led by the Muslim Brotherhood. Since Israel can't possibly be expected to negotiate with radical Islamists, Israel will immediately permanently confiscate the Golan Heights (necessary for 'security' against the 'radicals' leading Syria), and will soon contrive another war to confiscate more parts of Syria on the way to building Greater Israel.

This plan is much further developed than the most of the disgusting American media is prepared to reveal. In what has already been compared to Kissinger's illegal war in Cambodia, the Americans are now using the ruse of pursuit of insurgents to begin to fight an actual war on Syrian territory (some think it is these guys doing the fighting). The media has to keep this quiet, as it is completely illegal both under American and international law. The Syrians can't talk about it as it would prove that the Syrian government is not in control of Syrian territory, an admission which would lead to a coup. The war, the extent of which we will probably not know for years, is intended to destabilize the current Syrian government and lead to the Israeli goal of regime change. While the neocons appear to be on the run in Washington, their plans continue to develop as if the AIPAC/Niger forgery/Plamegate scandal was just some work of fiction.

The other mole in the White House

Who was the CIA mole in the White House who gently steered them towards Plame? Tenet told Cheney the name, which Cheney, perhaps referring to the state of his anger, heard as 'Flame'. Why would Tenet even mention the name of an undercover operative tied to Wilson, unless he had an ulterior motive? Who actually filled out the details of Plame's status and guided the neocons to destruction? Of course, there might have been more than one mole. Fred Fleitz comes immediately to mind, as he was in both the White House and the CIA, and worked in Plame's field of non-proliferation ('non-proliferation' seems to be the American term for limiting the access to weapons of mass destruction to the United States and Israel!). I have another suggestion. What about George W. Bush? His father is obviously lifetime CIA and headed the Agency. Bush himself had these mysterious plane flights to South America during the early 1970's. Bush's going AWOL without consequences might be explained by the fact that the CIA needed a pilot to do some work for them, a pilot who might have been suggested by his father.

Of course, Bush left the prudent path of his father and his father's friends like Powell and Scowcroft to follow the neocons into disaster. This could probably be excused because Bush needed the neocons to get the support of the Christian Zionists. Since the shit has hit the fan, it may be time to come back into the fold. What is the main goal of the Bush Crime Family? To advance the interests and plans of the Bush Crime Family. Which means Jeb as the next American President. The major block to that plan is Cheney, who can have the job for the asking if he wants to take it. How do you stop Cheney? Plamegate.

The 2012 American election

American politics seems to be shaping up for a 2012 Presidential election of Republican candidate Patrick Fitzgerald against Democrat candidate Eliot Spitzer. The United States could do, has done, and will do (Hillary versus Dick? Hillary versus Jeb?), worse.

Monday, October 24, 2005

The CIA set them up

I know, I know, I know. We're not supposed to even think that the CIA might have set up Plamegate, for fear that the neocons might be able to claim some excuse like entrapment. The neocons are obviously spooked and on the run. Look at their response, or rather non-response, to the UN Hariri report, framing Syria for Hariri's assassination so Kofi can get a few more months of free parking at the UN. In the bad old days, they would have had a violent response ready, and the bombs for Israel would already be falling. The slightly more muted response of the 'cons - outrage based on a sloppy and incomplete (or here) preliminary report based on iffy testimony that some Syrians might have been involved in blowing up a guy, while blowing up the city of Falluja is apparently fine - is evidence that they've temporarily decided to concentrate on saving their own necks rather than indulge their normal predilection for murdering Arabs (unfortunately, it appears that they'll get around to murdering Arabs soon enough). Even before the indictments, if any, Plamegate has had a salutary effect on American politics. I just can't get the tell-tale signs of CIA involvement out of my head:

  1. One of the mysteries of Plamegate is the identity of the forger of the Niger documents. Justin Raimondo ties the forgeries to two CIA agents in Italy, probably in cahoots with Chalabi or a Chalabi associate. On the face of it, it seems unlikely that the CIA was involved, if only because the forgeries were so spectacularly awful (the CIA is incompetent, but not in that way). What if they were supposed to be awful, and supposed to be easily discovered? What if they took Chalabi's hack forgeries, and blessed them by having them pass through CIA hands? What if they knew that Ledeen was crazy enough to take the forgeries at face value and run with them (Ledeen fancies himself a 'change agent' and the forgeries must have been impossible to resist in aid of another Machiavellian scheme), bringing them into the neocon system and thus into the State of the Union address as one of the few seemingly solid cases for war?

  2. The CIA could have sent anybody they liked to Niger to investigate the situation. While Wilson was a logical choice, there were many other logical choices. If they were so deeply concerned about the undercover status of his wife, isn't it odd that they picked Wilson? Assuming that they picked Wilson because they knew he would deliver a negative report, didn't it occur to anyone that the reaction to his report, even absent the breaking of any laws, might put Wilson and his family in the spotlight, thus threatening the privacy of their precious undercover agent? Or was that the point?

  3. Why didn't Tenet object to the sixteen words? He signed off on the State of the Union address, after complaining about similar words in Bush's Cincinnati speech only a few months earlier. Did he just get tired of hitting his head against the wall? Or was he very happy to see the sixteen words?

  4. Why did Wilson wait until after the war was over to write his article embarrassing the Bush Administration? It looks to me, and it sure looked to the neocons, that he had set them up.

  5. How did the neocons know to start to attack Wilson before Wilson even wrote his article? Did they have a spy in the CIA who gave them the heads-up? Or was this spy actually a CIA agent in the White House (let them waste some time and energy hunting for the mole!), setting them up by starting them on the process of falling into Plamegate?

  6. What kind of game was the CIA playing? They've been blamed for screwing up the Iraqi intelligence, which isn't really fair, but the lingering doubt is that they were remarkably two-faced about complaining about the neocon misuse of intelligence. They really did try to have it both ways, appearing to support the Administration while hedging their bets by quibbling about the details. Were they simply cowed by having Dick Cheney visiting them and giving them the skunk-eye? Or did they know there was going to be a war anyway, regardless of the intelligence, and so contrived to put themselves in the best possible position after the war?

  7. Miller's recent article, for what it's worth, indicates that the neocons felt themselves under siege from the CIA, who was trying to set them up.

  8. Just how important was Plame's status? There has been a lot of nonsense written from the left - of all places - about how terrible it is to uncover a covert operator. Threatens American lives! What a pile of crap. In the whole history of the CIA the 'cult of intelligence' hasn't saved one American life, and has no doubt endangered quite a few. Great job the billions of dollars worth of covert operatives did preventing September 11 or catching bin Laden! Plame doesn't even seem to have been actually undercover at the time of Wilson's article. Her status seems to have been widely known in certain Washington circles. Her famous front employer, Brewster Jennings, doesn't even seem to have been operating. The CIA lost nothing of value when Plame was outed, but gained some remarkable public relations.

  9. The 'dog that didn't bark' behind all this is the fact that the CIA has been abused, emasculated, and humiliated by the neocons, and hasn't done a thing about it. When John F. Kennedy mused about reducing the power of the CIA, the CIA stood by and let the Pentagon and the FBI shoot him dead. Why are their no dead people, except for a few in the State Department, in Washington today? Is the CIA so domesticated that it would allow itself to become a laughing stock without any attempt to fight back? Very unlikely.

The general scenario is that some big brains in the CIA knew, even before 9-11, that Bush was going to attack Iraq, and knew that there was no good reason to do so, and knew that the CIA was going to be hung out to dry and blamed for the whole mess. They knew that Ledeen was fundamentally an idiot, and would jump at any straw to advance the Israeli cause of killing Arabs, so they made up or found some sloppy forgeries and slipped them to Ledeen, perhaps using their pals at SISME, knowing that Ledeen would put his foot in it by trying to use them. The documents planted the seed of the entire uranium case, which the CIA knew the neocons would have to use because they had no other WMD evidence. They sent Wilson over to Niger because they knew he would deliver a negative report and they knew he had an undercover wife whose status was no longer important to them but which would look good on television. Tenet, the guy who told Cheney about Plame (!), but not perhaps that she was undercover, let the sixteen words stay in the State of the Union address so Bush would be personally entangled, thus putting downward pressure on the whole system. Somebody in the CIA told somebody in the White House that Wilson was going to embarrass them, and probably also told them about Plame. The 'cons were cleverly led at each step by people who knew that the neocon weaknesses - single-minded devotion to Israeli Likudnik causes, paranoia, vindictiveness, clannishness, a lack of appreciation of their own relative lack of sophistication, and a sense of complete invulnerability - could be manipulated to lead them down the road to disaster. It is exactly how Nixon was led into Watergate through manipulation of his quite similar weaknesses.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Miller's June notes

One of the mysteries of Plamegate had been how Miller could possibly have forgotten her notes of the June meeting with Scooter. Murray Waas solves the mystery:

"When a prosecutor first questioned Miller during her initial grand jury appearance on September 30, 2005 sources said, she did not bring up the June 23 meeting in recounting her various contacts with Libby, the chief of staff to Vice President Cheney. Pressed by prosecutors who then brought up the specific date of the meeting, Miller testified that she still could not recall the June meeting with Libby, in which they discussed a controversial CIA-sponsored mission to Africa by former Ambassador Joe Wilson, or the fact that his wife, Valerie Plame, worked for the CIA.

When a prosecutor presented Miller with copies of the White House-complex visitation logs, she said such a meeting was possible."

Miller didn't realize the Fitzgerald had the logs and already knew about the June meeting, and walked right into a trap. Fitzgerald must have told her she could either go to jail for lying to a Grand Jury and obstructing justice or she could come up with something to make it worth his while to forget the whole thing. So Miller, hero of the First Amendment and protector of sources, coughed up the notes.

Zionism and anti-Semitism

There is an interesting riff at jews sans frontieres about how the decision by the Jerusalem Post to produce a 'Christian' edition (I wouldn't think the 'news' was sectarian, but I guess I'm just naive; I wonder when they'll launch a Muslim edition?) ties in with long-standing connections between Zionism and anti-Semitism. When you consider that the biggest anti-Semites in the world are the Zionists, it is more than a bit ironic that they continue so successfully to use the 'anti-Semite' attack as part of their propaganda war to justify what Israel is up to (scroll down here to see the most recent manifestation of this attack in the ongoing silly complaints against Jorn Barger's seminal blog). I note that it has become the common nonsense to attack internet postings on the basis that you might have linked to somebody who might have linked to somebody who might have posted something with which you disagree. People are still unclear on the concept of the internet and hyperlinks.

But I digress. The misuse of the term 'anti-Semite' is so obviously associated with apologists for the racist anti-Muslim/anti-Arab policies of the State of Israel that I immediately assume that anyone using the term 'anti-Semite' is simply an anti-Muslim/anti-Arab racist. Just read Little Green Footballs or Rantburg to see how close the connection is between support for Israel and anti-Arab hatred. Anti-Arab hatred is simply disguised behind more politically-correct support for Israel. This would be more obvious to us if Western thought didn't contain a wide streak of implicit anti-Arab/anti-Muslim racism going back to the Crusades. Anyone who sits by and allows the racists to continue to get away with this is just as bad as they are.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

The tularemia attack

There's an article in Salon on the presence of tularemia at the site of the demonstrations in Washington on September 24. Some people did indeed get sick, and the presence of tularemia cannot be explained by natural causes. Then it concludes that it must have been an attack by terrorists. Yeah, that makes sense. Osama is in his lair in the wilds of Pakistan planning his next move, which could be an attack against anyone in the United States, and he decides to attack . . . an anti-Bush rally! Of course, there is no mention in the article of the semi-secret Pentagon anti-WMD terror exercise that was conducted in Washington in the previous week (although it does vaguely mention the possibility that "somebody was testing U.S. biological weapons defenses"). I guess it all depends on what you mean by 'terrorist'.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Plamegate and Watergate

An old CNN article on the Plame matter quotes Joseph Wilson from an interview with Paula Zahn:

"'Bob Novak called me before he went to print with the report and he said a CIA source had told him that my wife was an operative,' Wilson said. 'He was trying to get a second source. He couldn't get a second source. Could I confirm that? And I said no.'

Wilson said he called Novak after the article appeared citing sources in the Bush administration.

'What was it, CIA or senior administration?' Wilson said he asked Novak. 'He said to me, 'I misspoke the first time I spoke to you.''"

Novak really didn't answer the question, did he? Maybe it was a badly phrased question. There is one guy who was both CIA - Plame's field, in fact - and senior administration. Fred Fleitz. Fleitz worked for Bolton, and Bolton paid a visit to Judy in jail. Now Judy is pointing directly at Libby as the culprit (and her lawyer is as much as accusing Libby of witness tampering). Do these pieces fit together?


"As I told the grand jury, I recalled Mr. Libby's frustration and anger about what he called 'selective leaking' by the C.I.A. and other agencies to distance themselves from what he recalled as their unequivocal prewar intelligence assessments. The selective leaks trying to shift blame to the White House, he told me, were part of a 'perverted war' over the war in Iraq."

The neocons felt themselves to be unjustly under attack from the spectators in the cheap seats, which would include the CIA. The neocons, in fact, always perceive themselves to be unjustly under attack, and always depict themselves as underdogs fighting for righteousness against incredible odds. Paranoia is a big part of their game. The attack on Plame was much more a warning shot fired at the CIA - we can and will put your lives in danger if you mess with us - than it was an attack on Wilson. The attack was too vehement and too expensive in time and energy to be directed at Wilson. If Watergate was really a power struggle between Nixon and the Joint Chiefs of Staff, was Plamegate a power struggle between the neocons and the CIA? If it was such a power struggle, which side was Bolton/Fleitz on? What side is Miller on? Was she turned by something Bolton said to her in jail?

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Maxwell Smart in Iraq

Don Adams, who recently died, was most famous for playing Agent Maxwell Smart in the early television James Bond spoof 'Get Smart'. He had a number of catchphrases, including 'Would you believe . . .?', used at the beginning of each of a series of preposterous lies. The increasingly preposterous stories told by the British government to explain what recently happened in Basra are starting to sound like Maxwell Smart. Two SAS soldiers were found dressed in Arab clothes with a car trunk full of mayhem, hanging around an area where there was to be a protest against the British kidnapping of a local religious leader. When accosted, they managed to kill an Iraqi policeman, and the ensuing 'rescue' of these two SAS men led to the destruction of the local jail as well as a riot. The British initially denied everything, and then were gradually forced to admit some of the truth, which has culminated in an actual offer to pay for the damage done.

After the initial series of denials, the next official British explanation for what these men were up to was to claim that they were working on a mission to stop the smuggling into Iraq of Iranian munitions which were being used by the insurgency against British soldiers. This isn't an original story, but is just a copy of the same claim made by the Americans. The British have even elaborated on the story (Iran denies it). This story had a number of problems:

  • there is not one shred of evidence for it;

  • given the ongoing neocon propaganda war against Iran, the story seems too conveniently to attack the usual neocon target;

  • the insurgents who are supposed to be using these weapons were not allies of Iran;

  • it is not in the interests of Iran to promote the insurgency, as Iranian interests are doing splendidly in Iraq; and

  • the insurgents, many trained in Saddam's military, are capable of manufacturing their own sophisticated weapons.

All that was bad enough, but the latest revelation puts the insurgents' bombs in a whole new perspective. From The Independent on Sunday (or here):

"Eight British soldiers killed during ambushes in Iraq were the victims of a highly sophisticated bomb first used by the IRA, The Independent on Sunday can reveal.

The soldiers, who were targeted by insurgents as they travelled through the country, died after being attacked with bombs triggered by infra-red beams. The bombs were developed by the IRA using technology passed on by the security services in a botched 'sting' operation more than a decade ago.

This contradicts the British government's claims that Iran's Revolutionary Guard is helping Shia insurgents to make the devices.

The Independent on Sunday can also reveal that the bombs and the firing devices used to kill the soldiers, as well as two private security guards, were initially created by the UK security services as part of a counter-terrorism strategy at the height of the troubles in the early 1990s.

According to security sources, the technology for the bombs used in the attacks, which were developed using technology from photographic flash units, was employed by the IRA some 15 years ago after Irish terrorists were given advice by British agents."

Oh, oh! Don't you hate it when your lies come back and bite you on the ass? The insurgents aren't using Iranian technology. They are using IRA technology initially supplied by the British government itself in a botched intelligence operation!

It's 'Would you believe . . . ' time. The latest story is from the bastion of British official lies, the Telegraph:

"Two SAS soldiers imprisoned by Iraqis last month had been spying on a senior police commander who was torturing prisoners with an electric drill, The Sunday Telegraph can reveal."

Not 'Abdul the Driller'! This story is another twofer, as the SAS man were supposed to be monitoring the Driller, and the Driller operated out of the same jail that the British knocked down! This is an even more preposterous story than the first one.

Someone ought to tell the head of the SAS that if you tell a preposterous porkie pie and get caught, coming up with an even more preposterous lie won't fix the problem. Sorry about that Chief!

Pen-for-hire and the real conspirators

Judith Miller:

"I was not permitted to take notes of what I told the grand jury, and my interview notes on Mr. Libby are sketchy in places. It is also difficult, more than two years later, to parse the meaning and context of phrases, of underlining and of parentheses. On one page of my interview notes, for example, I wrote the name 'Valerie Flame.' Yet, as I told Mr. Fitzgerald, I simply could not recall where that came from, when I wrote it or why the name was misspelled."


"Mr. Fitzgerald asked me about another entry in my notebook, where I had written the words 'Valerie Flame,' clearly a reference to Ms. Plame. Mr. Fitzgerald wanted to know whether the entry was based on my conversations with Mr. Libby. I said I didn't think so. I said I believed the information came from another source, whom I could not recall."

Arianna Huffington:

"This is as believable as Woodward and Bernstein not recalling who Deep Throat was. It also means that Judy went to jail to protect a source she can't recall."

If Libby wasn't the source, the inescapable logic is that the entire Libby waiver story was a red herring, completely irrelevant. Since she can't remember her source, her jail time couldn't possibly have been to protect the concept of confidential sources or the Constitution.

I've noticed that the spin on this story is already to protect the New York Times at the expense of Miller. She was a 'rogue' 'run amok' who 'lied' to her editors, etc., etc. This completely ignores the fact that the editors for months and months had continued to send her out to produce obvious lies about the WMD, inexplicably continued to support her even after the deception was revealed (to the extent of making a laughingstock of the whole paper), and are still apparently unable to explain themselves. From the publisher and the editors on down, there was a concerted conspiracy in the New York Times to lie to the American people to force an illegal attack on Iraq. It's that simple. Miller was simply a pen-for-hire (and her feigned inability to remember the source just means she's still on the payroll). If it wasn't her, it would have been somebody else. Miller is guilty as hell, but more guilty is the Times, all the way up through all the writers who kept their heads down to protect their careers while the obvious lies flew (and continue to keep their heads down), all the editors who were knowing parts of the conspiracy, and the publisher, who, for reasons unknown, led the conspiracy.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Suicide 100 percent

Nobody believes that Ghazi Kenaan committed suicide, or as Damascus Attorney General Mohammad al-Louji called it "Suicide 100 percent". So who murdered him, and why? The Zionists and their fellow travelers claim it was because he knew too much about the assassination of Rafik Hariri, and how much the Syrian government is implicated in it, but it seems very odd to leave his removal for having that kind of information to so late a time. The anti-Zionists claim that the Mossad did him in because he knew too much about American/Israeli participation in the assassination of Hariri, but that is even less likely as he undoubtedly would have revealed such involvement by now. Here's a good theory from Joshua Landis (see also here):

"Was Ghazi Kanaan setting himself up to be Bashar's alternative? Could he have been the Alawite 'Musharrif' that some American's and Volker Perthes suggested would take power from the House of Asad and bring Syria back into America's and the West's good graces. I have heard from several people that 'high ranking Syrians' have been complaining to people at the National Security Council and elsewhere that they are very distressed by the mistakes Bashar al-Asad has made and the terrible state of US-Syrian relations.

Could Ghazi have been setting himself up as the alternative to Bashar? Could the Syrian government believe he might have been? We don't know, but here goes the possible speculation. He is known to have had good relations with Washington, when he held the Lebanon portfolio. He visited DC. Two of his four sons went to George Washington University in DC."

and (my emphasis):

"Kanaan was the most senior Alawi official left in government of the Hafiz's generation. He had served as an intelligence chief and minister of interior giving him influence over and knowledge of all branches of the security forces - intelligence and police. If Washington were to turn to anyone to carry out a coup against Bashar, it would have to place Ghazi Kanaan on the top of its list.

Could Kanaan have been assassinated in order to prevent him from challenging Bashar? We may never know, but it is possible.

Bashar al-Asad has been clamping down on all possible rivals. Civil society has been all but silenced since the June Baath Party conference. The Atasi forum shut down. Evidently Anwar al-Bunni, Damascus' leading civil rights lawyer and advocate is presently in hiding so he would be arrested. All emerging political movements have been broken up during the past several months. The Kurds are under intense pressure as are all Islamic organizations. Bashar's strongest suit is that there is not alternative to his rule. Washington must either accept him as president or tempt the fates that Syria will collapse into some form of social chaos. Now that Ghazi Kanaan is no longer alive, it is hard to imagine another Alawi in the government who would have the authority, knowledge, or standing to pull off a coup."

Did the neocons have Kanaan lined up as Syria's Chalabi, a friend ready to be Washington's stooge in Damascus after an American-engineered coup? Did Bashar find out about it time to take the only logical step to preserve his regime?

Deep Plame

Why did the White House - and it appears that almost everybody was involved - spend so much time and effort, and take so many political risks, going after Wilson and Plame? Didn't they have anything better to do? Their bungling efforts at dirty tricks just made Wilson's article more famous than it otherwise would have been. Why did the White House immediately turn to Judy Wilson and the New York Times when it wanted to start this particular dirty trick? How did the White House dirty tricksters know to start their planning for the attack on Wilson/Plame even before Wilson wrote the article which caused the problem? Does Cheney have ESP? The obvious White House-CIA connection is Fred Fleitz. If Fleitz gave them the heads-up, did he do so working for the CIA, or for John Bolton? Were the neocons the subject of a CIA set-up started by a traitor in their midst? Why did Wilson wait until after the attack on Iraq was over to publish an article that might have been politically important in preventing the war if he had published immediately after Powell's UN speech but before attack had started? Are Wilson's motives are as pristine as he would have us believe? Is it just a coincidence that the CIA picked Wilson to go to Iraq, and just a coincidence that his wife was CIA and in the field of non-proliferation? Non-proliferation, or perhaps more accurately, proliferation, is Bolton's field. Did the White House insiders see the Wilson article, and in fact the entire CIA involvement in the Niger matter, as a power play by the CIA, and thus not subject to the usual niceties of Washington behavior? What was the CIA actually doing during the lead-up to the war? Was it for the war, or against it? What kind of game was George Tenet playing? Why did he force Hadley to take the uranium references out of the Cincinnati speech but let the State of the Union address slip by without any comment? Did he say nothing because he thought it would not do any good? Was the CIA happy to see the White House put their foot in it? Is the reduction in CIA power in Washington part of the White House pay-back for the CIA's efforts in embarrassing the White House? Why don't we know the answers to any of these questions?

Friday, October 14, 2005

Civilwarland in Bad Decline

From Iraqi Resistance Report (scroll down a bit):

"A number of Iraqis apprehended two Americans disguised in Arab dress as they tried to blow up a booby-trapped car in the middle of a residential area in western Baghdad on Tuesday.

Residents of western Baghdad's al-Ghazaliyah district told Quds Press that the people had apprehended the Americans as they left their Caprice car near a residential neighborhood in al-Ghazaliyah on Tuesday afternoon (11 October 2005). Local people found they looked suspicious so they detained the men before they could get away. That was when they discovered that they were Americans and called the Iraqi puppet police.

Five minutes after the arrival of the Iraqi puppet police on the scene a large force of US troops showed up and surrounded the area. They put the two Americans in one of their Humvees and drove away at high speed to the astonishment of the residents of the area.

Quds Press spoke by telephone with a member of the al-Ghazaliyah puppet police who confirmed the incident, saying that the two men were non-Arab foreigners but declined to be more precise about their nationality.

Quds Press pointed out that about a month ago, the Iraqi puppet police in the southern Iraqi city of al-Basrah arrested two Britons whom they accused of attempting to cause an explosion in the city. The Britons were taken into custody by the Iraqi puppet police only to be broken out of prison by an assault of British occupation troops. That incident has created a tense relationship between the British and the local puppet authorities in al-Basrah, Quds Press noted."

The sloppiness in getting caught like this is probably a reflection of the upcoming vote on the constitution, and the need to stir up as much trouble as possible in the days before the vote. While it would be nice to catch the neocons for what they did two or three years ago, it would be even nicer if somebody were to stop what they are doing now, which is attempting to create a civil war in Iraq. For a bunch of guys who may be going to jail, they are acting as they always have, boldly, and without the slightest opposition. It would be interesting to know what 'non-Arab foreigners' means.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

More aimless musings on Miller

It appears that the elaborate game played by Libby and Miller was solely intended to force Fitzgerald into questioning Miller only on her July conversations with Libby. They wanted to have it both ways: Libby couldn't be seen as denying the waiver, and Miller couldn't testify until they could pressure Fitzgerald into only asking questions about July. Miller's lawyers couldn't go to Fitzgerald and say "she'll testify on condition it is only about July", as Fitzgerald would then be alerted to the fact that there were other conversations in other months, something which Miller and Libby apparently were assuming he didn't know. Fitzgerald's got another matter with Miller, about Miller tipping off an Islamic charity about a raid (Miller implausibly playing Lynne Stewart, as if Miller would do anything to help an Islamic charity!), so she could attempt to frame the limiting of the questioning in such a way as to direct it to one particular meeting with Libby, using the ruse that this limitation was intended to protect her from 'fishing expeditions' by Fitzgerald. She could plausibly argue that Fitzgerald would be abusing his authority if he used her jailing in one matter to force her to answer questions about the Islamic charity matter. She had to stay in jail long enough to pressure Fitzgerald into agreeing to limiting the questioning to July and to Libby (it's still unclear exactly what the terms of the limitation were, but it is enough to know that it somehow kept her from having to admit to the June meeting). Miller and Libby thought they'd pulled one over on Fitzgerald, having him agree to the July limitation not realizing that they were really trying to keep him from asking about all Miller-Libby meetings, including at least one important one in June.

The elaborate plan was foiled as Fitzgerald apparently found out about the June meeting from another source (the revenge of Colin Powell?). Miller had to promptly find notes which neither she nor the New York Times could find before. All hell has broken loose. But why would Miller and Libby want to avoid even hinting that there was a June conversation? Could it be that the reason is that Cheney was a party to the June meeting, and the actual angry scheme of outing Plame was discussed in profane detail? It was Cheney, after all, who was personally embarrassed by Wilson, and this pointless act of revenge sounds just like Cheney. The Miller and Libby charade to protect Cheney would thus parallel the apparent attempt by Rove to protect Bush by falsely claiming to Fitzgerald that Rove lied to Bush in telling him that Rove wasn't involved in outing Plame. The underlings take a bullet for their betters. Miller's heroic jailing to protect the Constitution just becomes part of a conspiracy to protect Dick Cheney.

This isn't nobility. All these guys saw the collapse of the Nixon White House. You either hang together or hang apart. As long as Cheney and Bush are still around (and they may need President Cheney if the matter goes through the next election cycle), Fitzgerald can bring the full power of the law down on Libby and Rove, only to see them pardoned by Bush and/or Cheney. If you protect the head, the fish doesn't rot so fast.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

He glows red

From Spitting Image, a great photograph entitled, I think, Little Lord Fauntelroy meets Beelzebub. Speaking of the Devil, his Halliburton stock options have been calculated to have gone up in value a mere 3,281 percent in the last year. I've written about this:

"The Cheney-Halliburton connection has to be the largest and most blatant example of corruption in modern American history. Cheney is the effective President of the United States, and is clearly behind the awarding of massive contracts to a corporation that continues to pay him. If this were happening in Nigeria we'd sneer at the corruption, but in the American context it is beyond belief. Spiro Agnew had to resign over allegations that he received payoffs from engineers seeking contracts when he was Baltimore county executive and governor of Maryland. Spiro had nothing on Dick. The amounts of money Spiro stole would be chump change for Cheney. The best part of all this is that Cheney is going to get away with it.

George Packer on Iraq

From a very positive review by Gary Kamiya, Salon's executive editor, of a new book by George Packer, "The Assassins' Gate: America in Iraq", on the debacle of the attack on Iraq and its aftermath, referring to Wolfowitz, Perle, Feith, and Abrams (my emphasis in bold):

"Almost all these figures, starting with Scoop Jackson, shared a key obsession: Israel. 'In 1996, some of the people in Perle's circle had begun to think about what it would mean for Saddam Hussein to be removed from the Middle East scene. 'They concluded it would be very good for Israel,' Packer writes. 'Perle chaired a study group of eight pro-Likud Americans, including Douglas Feith, who had worked under Perle in the Reagan administration, and David Wurmser, who was the author of the paper produced under the group's auspices . . . Afterwards the group was pleased enough with its work to send the paper to the newly elected Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu.' The paper, 'A Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing the Realm,' advocated smashing the Palestinians militarily, removing Saddam from power, and installing a Hashemite king on the Iraq throne.

The dangerous absurdity of this scheme (elements of which appeared in a later book by Perle and Bush speechwriter David Frum, modestly titled 'An End to Evil') did not prevent it from being accepted by high officials of the Bush administration. 'A few weeks before the start of the Iraq War, a State Department official described for me what he called the 'everybody move over one theory': Israel would annex the occupied territories, the Palestinians would get Jordan, and the Jordanian Hashemites would be restored to the throne of Iraq,' Packer writes. The neocons were out-Likuding the Likud: Even Ariel Sharon had long abandoned his beloved 'Jordan is Palestine' idea. That Douglas Feith, one of the ideologues who subscribed to such lunatic plans (the departing Colin Powell denounced Feith to President Bush as 'a card-carrying member of the Likud') was in charge of planning for Iraq is almost beyond belief.

'Does this mean that a pro-Likud cabal insinuated its way into the high councils of the U.S. government and took hold of the apparatus of American foreign policy to serve Israeli interests (as some critics of the war have charged, rather than addressing its merits head on?)' Packer asks. 'Is neoconservative another word for Jewish (as some advocates of the war have complained, rather than addressing their critics head on)?' Packer does not answer the first question directly, but he makes it clear that the intellectual origins of the war were inseparably tied to neocon concerns about Israel. 'For Feith and Wurmser, the security of Israel was probably the prime mover . . . The idea of realigning the Middle East by overthrowing Saddam Hussein was first proposed by a group of Jewish policy makers and intellectuals who were close to the Likud. And when the second President Bush looked around for a way to think about the uncharted era that began on September 11, 2001, there was one already available.'"

and, on the Office of Special Plans:

"As plans for war raced ahead, a secret new unit was being set up in the Pentagon, overseen by Douglas Feith and his deputy, William Luti, who was such a maniacal hawk that his colleagues called him 'Uber-Luti.' (At a staff meeting, Luti once called retired Gen. Anthony Zinni a traitor for questioning the Iraq war.) The secret unit was called the Office of Special Plans, and it was charged with planning for Iraq. Packer's account of this office is chilling. Its main purpose was to cook up intelligence to justify the war, which was then 'stovepiped' directly to Dick Cheney's neocon chief of staff, I. Lewis Libby (who has now been linked to the Valerie Plame scandal). Its cryptic name as well as its opposition to the traditional intelligence agencies, which had failed to deliver the goods on Saddam, reflected the views of its director, Abram Shulsky, a former Perle aide, housemate of Wolfowitz's at Cornell, and student of the Chicago classics professor Leo Strauss. Strauss, around whom a virtual cult had gathered, had famously discussed esoteric and hidden meanings in great works, and Shulsky wrapped himself in the lofty mantle of his former professor to justify the secret and 'innovative' approach of the OSP.

In fact, besides feeding bogus intelligence from Iraqi exile sources into the rapacious craw of the White House, the OSP was nothing but a spin machine to prepare the way to war: No actual 'planning' was done."

and, fitting closely to my general theory about long-term Israeli plans:

"'Shiite power was the key to the whole neoconservative vision for Iraq,' Packer notes. 'The convergence of ideas, interests, and affections between certain American Jews and Iraqi Shia was one of the more curious subplots of the Iraq War . . . the Shia and the Jews, oppressed minorities in the region, could do business, and . . . traditional Iraqi Shiism (as opposed to the theocratic, totalitarian kind that had taken Iran captive) could lead the way to reorienting the Arab world toward America and Israel.'"

Amazing stuff. Even more amazing are revelations that the complete lack of planning for the aftermath of the war was intentional, based on neo-con fears that allowing real experts to explain the difficulties might actually prevent the war from occurring. In fact, the real experts were systematically purged from the system by the neocons, an act which should in itself result in all the neocons being jailed for treason (hobbling the American military thinking process in order to benefit a foreign country is clearly treason).

Only a short while ago, you would be the vilest of vile anti-Semites for even thinking this way, but the idea that the disastrous American attack on Iraq was the product of treasonous Israeli agents in the American government working directly for the Likud is becoming mainstream thinking. What would be nice is if we could stop realizing the truth only two or three years late (read the 'conspiracy theorists' if you want to be ahead of the curve!), and put a stop now to the fact that these same traitors are still working to cause a civil war in Iraq, good for the Likudniks but extremely bad for the United States, the Middle East, and the world.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Stephen Hadley's memory

emptywheel in The Next Hurrah (found via wotisitgood4) considers the possible role of Stephen Hadley in the Plame scandal, and the particular use by the White House of National Security Advisor staffers like Hadley to hide shenanigans under the President's executive privilege:

"This White House - actually all recent White Houses - have long used National Security Council staff as a tool to shield executive activities from Congressional or legal scrutiny. Because the National Security Advisor position evolved as a special advisor to the President, it fell under executive privilege guidelines that accrued to the President himself. As the NSA became an increasingly important position (think Henry Kissinger), this privilege came to extend to the staffers who reported to the NSA."

Hadley might actually be the Rosetta Stone in tying the whole thing together. The key to Plamegate isn't the outing of Plame, but the original lies told to fool the American people into the attack on Iraq. One of the main lies was based on the forged Niger uranium documents, the forger of which has never been found (and the FBI is peculiarly uninterested in asking the main Italian witness about it, just as they are peculiarly uninterested in really investigating the anthrax attacks). Bush tried to use the Niger claim in his Cincinnati speech in October 2002, but Tenet saw a draft and phoned Hadley to specifically order it out. The same issue came up in the infamous January 2003 State of the Union address, but Hadley claims he forgot about the matter and left the offending words in the speech. How do you forget about a call from the head of the CIA three months before referring specifically to this very issue? Hadley's implausible forgetfulness is evidence of a conspiracy to sneak the sixteen words, based on the forged documents, into the State of the Union address, where they formed one of the main platforms for the successful propaganda battle by the neocons to fool America into war. The sixteen words became the focus of Wilson's attack on the White House. Hadley ties together the sixteen words and the forged Niger uranium documents, supplied through the neo-cons in the White House, and the later attempt to blame the whole thing on Tenet and the CIA (that part is the cover-up of the conspiracy, the part which always seems to get the conspirators in trouble). Tenet was given the Presidential Medal of Freedom for agreeing to take the blame, and the actions of Tenet and Hadley are just part of the conspiracy and cover-up. Hadley would have been used because he could hide the trickery behind executive privilege. It would be nice if Fitzgerald were to turn his inquiry into more than just an investigation of who talked to whom, but a full investigation of the original lies that led to the war and their source in a White House conspiracy leading back to the neocons and the forged Niger documents.

Friday, October 07, 2005

The war on pan-Arab nationalism

As always, heavy-duty good stuff from Pepe Escobar (my emphasis in bold):

"Imad Fawzi al-Shuaibi, head of the Strategic Studies Center in Damascus, told al-Jazeera that former Lebanese prime minister, Rafik Hariri, 'did have disagreements with Syria, but he did not call for the withdrawal of Syrian forces from Lebanon, or stir up hostility towards Syria or demand an end to Syria's role in Lebanon'. Lebanese lawyer Bushra al-Khalil went one step ahead: he told al-Jazeera that 'Hariri's death is part of the plan to divide the region into tiny helpless sectarian states. This plan has started in Iraq and it will continue to hit all other Arab countries.'

It's clearly understood in vast swathes of the Middle East that the crucial trait of Bush's Greater Middle East implies a coup de grace against Arab nationalism - wherever it is manifested. It's always important to remember that most borders in the Arab world are totally artificial, imposed above all by British colonialism.

For Washington, the real enemy is not Islamic fundamentalism: it's Arab nationalism. For decades the ultimate target of Israeli foreign policy has been to sow disunion among Arabs. Secular Arab nationalism is the ultimate threat to Israel, thus to the US, in neo-con thinking. The crux is not religious: it's political."


"Progressive, secular Arab intellectuals stress that Washington-Jerusalem will never tolerate united Arab lands. They stress that the Greater Middle East package is pure 'strategic intimidation' designed to 'eliminate any form of Arab or Muslim unity considered as a threat to the US strategy, and that of its strategic ally, Israel', as Mahua Daoudi, a Syrian intellectual and scholar at the CNRS think tank in Geneva, put it."


" . . . in the Arab world, as Asia Times Online has learned, the fear is that the death of Iraq will mean in fact the death of Arab nationalism. That's the view, among others, of Abdullah al-Ashaal, a former planner at the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs: he sustains that de-Ba'athification is being instrumentalized to blow up the foundation of the Iraqi state; Iraq's Arab identity is being threatened so three statelets based on ethnic-religious differences may be created.

The same analysis is shared by Paris-based Lebanese Antoine Basbous, director of the Observatory of the Arab Countries. He confirms that pan-Arabism is a key target of Bush's Greater Middle East and is convinced Iraq's break up is inevitable, not so much because it was an initial American objective, but because now, with extremism being unleashed on all fronts, Sunnis, Shi'ites and Kurds are ready to go to battle to preserve their interests. More worringly, Basbous predicts that this pattern will be repeated all over the Middle East.

The neo-con allegation that democracy is incompatible with Islam is rubbish: Indonesia, Malaysia, Bangladesh, Turkey, all Muslim countries, are democracies. The specific - and crucial - problem of Arab lands is that the US cannot possibly promote democracy beyond mere rhetoric; otherwise its satraps and client states are in danger of being taken over by Islamist-leaning and certainly anti-US regimes. That would certainly be the case in Egypt and Saudi Arabia."

It is correct to see many of the current scandals in Washington (Plame, Franklin/AIPAC, Abramoff, and DeLay) as the reaction by patriotic Americans to the wholesale capture of American foreign policy by Israeli interests. However, it is also important to remember that American fear of pan-Arab nationalism predates its current unhealthy relationship with Israel by decades. The CIA started to covertly sponsor the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt in the 1950's, in reaction to Nasser and the perception of his ability to forge a pan-Arab alliance. The whole thing starts to make sense when you realize that al Qaeda is just an arm of the Muslim Brotherhood. Terrorism destabilizes Arab countries and simultaneously provides the excuse, via the 'war on terror', for American military intervention. The ultimate goal is to prevent pan-Arab alliances, and ultimately to break up any states which could be threatening to Israel into unimportant statelets (the strategy described by Yinon, discussed here many times). The current neo-con/Zionist trick has been to piggy-back Israeli interests on the long-standing fear of the Washington establishment of any pan-Arab alliance, based on a perception of the loss of power inherent in loss of total control of the oil fields (imagine what would happen if the oil wealth was controled for the benefit of all the Arab peoples, rather than just for those elites installed by the colonialists). Iraq is the first example of the long-term American-Israeli strategy, with Syria - the only remaining state sponsor of socialist, pan-Arab nationalism - to follow (it is becoming obvious that the plan is to partition Syria by giving its eastern portions to the new destabilizing statelet of Kurdistan). The only response of the Arab peoples, if they are to avoid total annihilation, is to work even more quickly towards the goal which Israel and the United States are trying to destroy, Arab nationalism. Stop taking the bait and fighting amongst yourselves!

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Iraqi pharmacists attack

They're getting a bit obvious, aren't they? Fitzgerald is getting ready to announce who, if anybody, he's going after (with Rove apparently singing like a little turd canary), and we get a big subway terrorism scare in NYC. And get this! It's an attack by Iraqi pharmacists (I guess the Iraqi fightin' opthamologists were busy). So if you're on the New York subway and some guy in a white coat with a funny accent tries to sell you the new wonderdrug called Ricin-o-Cyanide, don't be fooled. It's a fiendish terrorist plot.

The real insurgency, and the fake one

The latest story (or here) is that the Iraqi insurgents are using American vehicles stolen in the United States in committing their attacks. This has to remind you of the discovery that the insurgents were using Italian-made hand guns manufactured without serial numbers, an order almost certainly placed by some intelligence agency (it should also remind you of the inconsistencies in the assassination of Nick Berg). The 'experts' claim that the American vehicles are used because they more easily fit in, but that is obvious nonsense, as they stand out like a sore thumb. The insurgency is ninety-five percent local - the other five percent of the insurgents are from neighboring Muslim countries radicalized by the obscenity of the American violence against innocent Iraqis, and will no doubt go on to cause the United States years of trouble in the future - and use exactly the assets you would think they would use. Things they have at hand. Things like local delivery trucks and armaments hidden in Saddam's arms caches. They are not some international organization with contacts with American organized crime that would have access to vehicles stolen in the United States. Since the British agents provocateurs were caught red-handed in Basra, it has become more and more difficult to reject the theory that much of the insurgency - in particular those acts intended to create tensions between Sunnis and Shi'ites and create a civil war that will break up the country - is a concerted effort by intelligence agents from the United States, Britain, and Israel. There are two parallel 'insurgencies':

  1. the real one, which consists of attacks against foreign occupying soldiers by people, mostly from Iraq, opposed to the occupation; and

  2. the fake one, which consists of attacks by American, British and Israeli agents provocateurs against groups of civilians, and against foreign aid workers and journalists, which is intended to break up the county in a civil war and obfuscate what is really going on.

Mixing these up is intended to hide the reality of the real opposition of the people of Iraq to the occupation.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Peace march coincidences

There was a big peace demonstration in Washington on September 24, accompanied by the usual coincidences:

  1. A few days before the demonstration, the Pentagon conducted a highly classified 'demonstration' in the Washington metropolitan area called Granite Shadow. William M. Arkin writes (found via Cannonfire "It's impossible NOT to presume conspiracy"):

    "A spokesman at the Joint Force Headquarters-National Capital Region (JFHQ-NCR) confirmed the existence of Granite Shadow to me yesterday, but all he would say is that Granite Shadow is the unclassified name for a classified plan.

    That classified plan, I believe, after extensive research and after making a couple of assumptions, is CONPLAN 0400, formally titled Counter-Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction. Concept Plan (CONPLAN) 0400 is a long-standing contingency plan of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (CJCS) that serves as the umbrella for military efforts to counter the spread of weapons of mass destruction. It has extensively been updated and revised since 9/11.

    The CJCS plan lays out national policy and priorities for dealing with WMD threats in peacetime and crisis - from far away offensive strikes and special operations against foreign WMD infrastructure and capabilities, to missile defenses and 'consequence management' at home if offensive efforts fail"


    "Granite Shadow is the twin to Power Geyser, a program I first revealed to The New York Times in January. The JFHQ spokesman confirms that Granite Shadow and Power Geyser are two different unclassified names for two different classified plans.

    In the case of Power Geyser, the classified plan is CJCS CONPLAN 0300, whose entire title is classified. According the military documents, the unclassified title is 'Counter-Terrorism Special Operations Support to Civil Agencies in the event of a domestic incident.' It is another Top Secret/SPECAT plan directing the same special mission units to provide weapons of mass destruction recovery and 'render safe' in either a terrorist incident or in the case of a stolen (or lost) nuclear weapon. Render safe refers to the ability of explosive ordnance disposal experts to isolate and disarm any type of biological, chemical, nuclear or radiological weapon.

    The obvious question is why there is a need for two plans. My guess is that Power Geyser and CONPLAN 0300 refers to operations in support of a civil agency 'lead' (most likely the Attorney General for a WMD attack) while Granite Shadow and CONPLAN 0400 lays out contingencies where the military is in the lead. I'll wait to be corrected by someone in the know.

    Both plans seem to live behind a veil of extraordinary secrecy because military forces operating under them have already been given a series of 'special authorities' by the President and the secretary of defense. These special authorities include, presumably, military roles in civilian law enforcement and abrogation of State's powers in a declared or perceived emergency."

    It would be just like these guys to plan their little martial law practice in such a way as to provide a bonus as they play with isolating and disarming their planted biological weapons (the eventual plan is for the Pentagon to be both cause and cure of disease outbreaks, so the public will be begging for martial law). Which leads to . . .

  2. Detectable concentrations of tularemia bacteria, a known biological weapon, were found at exactly the place where the march was held at the time of the march. Bob Fitrakis writes (or here):

    "Coincidence theorists. You gotta love 'em and their great faith in believing in the statistically improbable occurrence of events, rather than an alternative hypothesis: that friends of Bush (FOBs) planted the tularemia bacteria, just as they most likely sent anthrax to Democratic senators and the media."


    "Unless federal officials are willing to think the unthinkable, but obvious, and have the tularemia samples independently tested, we'll never know whether a deliberate attack occurred against peaceful U.S. citizens exercising their First Amendment rights, or some freakish and bizarre coincidence occurred."

  3. Amtrak suspended southbound rail service out of New York on the morning of September 24, allegedly because a beam fell onto electrical wires in New Jersey. This affected "the travel plans of at least hundreds and possibly more than 1,000 protesters, organizers said."

  4. Trains in Northern Virginia, bringing protestors from the South, were delayed as they were sharing a single track to allow for repair work on a switch, work that had been planned for several weeks. Bob Fitrakis again (or here):

    "The paper duly noted that the repair had been planned 'for several weeks.' They failed to report that the rally had been planned for several months."

The unsolved anthrax attacks, with their timing and direction at prominent Democrat leaders, eased the passage of the Patriot Act, which until the attacks was not guaranteed to become law. The FBI pronounces itself 'stymied' in investigating the matter, although a quick read of the internet provides lots of convincing evidence of the identity of the perpetrator (the timing and content and target of the anonymous warning letter, sent at a time after the anthrax was mailed but before its existence became known to the public, coupled with the fact the anthrax had to have originated in Fort Detrick, is damning). The tularemia clearly wasn't intended to hurt anybody. It was the release of information about the tularemia which was intended to be a shot across the bow of any future protests. It is not difficult to believe, especially given the transparent cover-up being conducted by the FBI, that the next time it will be anthrax.

Monday, October 03, 2005

King Dick and Cardinal Scooter

Scooter Libby sports the name of a child and has the relatively innocuous title of Vice President Cheney's Chief of Staff and Assistant to the Vice President for National Security Affairs, but he is really the second most powerful man in the United States, and thus the second most powerful man in the world (I don't count the Alcoholic-in-Chief). He is the architect of the web of lies which led to the attack on Iraq, and the sole connecting link between:

  1. Dick Cheney;

  2. the hard-liners in the Pentagon (he co-wrote the infamous draft of the 'Defense Planning Guidance' with Wolfowitz for then-Defense Secretary Dick Cheney in 1992, the document that was so radical that Bush I had to pretend it didn't exist);

  3. the PNAC/neo-con crowd (a founding member of PNAC, Libby was also a participant in the 2000 report "Rebuilding America's Defenses - Strategy, Forces, and Resources for a New Century", which has been the blueprint of the Bush Administration);

  4. the Israeli/Zionist lobby;

  5. the Office of Special Plans, set up specifically to build the lying basis for the attack on Iraq (Feith ran it, but it was Libby's baby); and

  6. the Sulzberger/Miller lying machine known as the New York Times, an institution which has peculiarly turned itself inside-out on this particular matter.

We know from all the far-fetched stories told about the waiver that Libby gave to Miller, and his ridiculous claim to be surprised that Miller was in jail due to Libby, that they are all lying about this whole matter. Allowing Miller to testify, after making sure that she wouldn't, means that the Bush Administration has decided to at least risk Libby's White House career. Who are you protecting when you decide to risk the career of the second-most powerful man in the world? As whatreallyhappened wrote in a comment on October 2:

"We've known for months that Libby was a leaker. Miller was/is protecting someone higher up, and there ain't much higher to go here."

The logic is inescapable. They have to be protecting the most powerful man in the world, and the next President of the United States, Dick Cheney. The United States is essentially an absolute monarchy, run by King Dick I, and Scooter is his Cardinal Richelieu. It was Cheney who was personally embarrassed by Joe Wilson's revelations, and Cheney who would have precipitated the criminal conspiracy to out Valerie Plame, a conspiracy run by his right-hand man, Scooter Libby. Fitzgerald can hardly take down Cheney, but he can go a long way to ensuring that Jeb is the next President.