Clumsiness of new “Osama” propaganda: sign of increasing Bush administration desperation
Exactly one year ago, in response to a previous bogus “Osama” transmission, I wrote:
“Like previous productions, the tape was conveniently timed to reinforce and invigorate Washington’s expanding war agenda, keep the populations of Western nations fearfully compliant and supportive of the Bush administration’s “war on terrorism”, further provoke anti-Western sentiment in the Middle East, and distract from exploding political and economic fault lines all over the world. Analysis of previous alleged Osama bin Laden videos, and other loudly-promoted ‘terror tapes’, ‘arrests’ and ‘trials’, have been exposed as propaganda, likely produced by operatives of the Bush administration. We can logically conclude that this work is more of the same.”
This latest production may be the clumsiest and most transparent fakery of them all. Today, with the Bush administration cornered and bleeding from scandals, in need of a distraction and cover for an atrocity in Pakistan, more justification for a future conquest of Iran, and facing Peak Oil and Gas-related collapse, it is a fine time for another wag, another attempt at the same old trick. But it is a trick that is losing its power.
One day after the initial broadcast, Al-Jazeera.com (not associated with the Al-Jazeera Space Channel TV Network that broadcasted the Bin Laden tape) responded with “Bin Laden tapes: fact or fiction?”, a piece that questions the authenticity and too-convenient timing of this latest work, correctly suggesting the possibility of a US intelligence/Bush administration “wag the dog”. In “Latest Bin Laden Tape: Another of the NeoCons’ ‘Greatest Hits’”, Steve Watson points out, “even the BBC lays this out in the open with the headline Bin Laden threats may boost Bush:
” ‘The commander-in-chief has been under intense pressure in recent weeks, accused of trampling on civil liberties in pursuit of terror suspects. His defence has been that America is a nation at war. So Bin Laden’s latest threats to launch new attacks on the US will only serve to underline this argument.
” ‘The White House will also cite the tape when trying to convince allies abroad that the use of tough tactics is justified – even when civilians are killed, as in last week’s air raid in Pakistan.’
“That just says it all really.”
As Michel Chossudovsky points out in “The Anglo-American War of Terror: An Overview”:
“One of the main objectives of war propaganda is to ‘fabricate an enemy’. As anti-war sentiment grows and the political legitimacy the Bush Administration falters, doubts regarding the existence of this illusive ‘outside enemy’ must be dispelled.
“Propaganda purports not only to drown the truth but also to ‘kill the evidence’ on how this ‘outside enemy’, namely Osama bin Laden’s Al Qaeda was fabricated and transformed into ‘Enemy Number One’. The entire National Security doctrine centers on the existence of an ‘outside enemy’ which is threatening the Homeland.”
Even if he were real, “Osama”, “Al-Qaeda” and the “war on terrorism” has exclusively served the political purposes of the Anglo-American empire, every moment that the Bush administration has needed a fabricated straw enemy. The irrefutable fact that Osama bin Laden, and Al-Qaeda, and all fabricated propaganda featuring their images, are creations of Anglo-American intelligence, and continue to serve faithfully as intelligence assets.
Anti-war Left targeted
As this writer previously noted, “if the case can be made that the tapes are, in fact, manufactured by US intelligence agencies, it stands to reason that the words out of the mouth of the Osama image have also been conceived, written and planted by these same agencies. It is therefore foolish to ‘read’ the tapes without this likely framework in mind…It is not a stretch to expect future bin Laden tapes to issue more specific planted facts about a variety of issues that the Bush administration wants American citizens to oppose. “
Recall that the goal of the last round of “Osama” transmissions sought to ridicule 9/11 “conspiracy theories”, and the concept that oil was behind the Anglo-American war of conquest. In this followup, the Bush administration wants Americans, and the entire world, to oppose the anti-war movement. If “Osama” the arch-fiend is talking peace, then peace, of course, is unacceptable.
In a January 21, 2006 piece, “What’s Not Right About the Bin Laden Tape”, Wayne Madsen cuts to the heart of the Bush propaganda game:
“What’s not right about the Osama Bin Laden tape. One thing that the Bush administration does well is manage perceptions of the public. Amid protests over the NSA wiretapping, the extension of the Patriot Act, and the nomination of neo-Fascist Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court, an audio tape on Osama Bin Laden is sent to Al Jazeera. On the tape, Bin Laden suddenly veers from being a traditional right-wing Wahhabi fanatic to the right of the House of Saud to a leftist progressive. The tape by Bin Laden was quickly verified as ‘authentic’ by a CIA that is now firmly in the grasp of neo-cons under Porter Goss.
“However, the tape is an obvious fake being used by the Bush administration to scare Americans into believing ‘Al Qaeda’ is making plans for another attack and an attempt to link Bin Laden to Democrats.”
Madsen then gets to heart of the fakery:
“The reason the tape is as phony as Niger yellowcake documents and Saddam’s weapons of mass destruction is as plain as day. ‘Bin Laden’ allegedly quotes from the introduction of a book written by long-time Washington, DC progressive author and journalist and a friend of mine, Bill Blum. Bill was once an editor and contributor to Covert Action Quarterly, a magazine devoted to exposing CIA operations like the arming, funding, and training of Bin Laden and his mujaheddin guerrillas during the Afghan-Soviet war.
“The Bush perception managers are either incredibly stupid or are trying to ensnare liberal journalists as aiders and abettors of Al Qaeda, something that is certainly within their scope. Bin Laden allegedly quotes the following passage from Blum’s book, Rogue State: “If you (Americans) are sincere in your desire for peace and security, we have answered you. And if Bush decides to carry on with his lies and oppression, then it would be useful for you to read the book Rogue State, which states in its introduction: ‘If I were president, I would stop the attacks on the United States: First I would give an apology to all the widows and orphans and those who were tortured. Then I would announce that American interference in the nations of the world has ended once and for all.’” However, this quote is not from Rogue State, again, pointing to a very bad forgery of the Bin Laden audiotape.”
Madsen correctly points out that historian Blum’s support for the Soviet war in Afghanistan makes a plug from “Osama” all the more ridiculous:
“So, we’re now supposed to believe that Bin Laden has come around to plug the book written by an author who demonstrated that the Soviet cause in Afghanistan was for self-defense and in furtherance of the well-being of the Afghan people and that Bin Laden’s and his mujaheddin compatriots’ cause was anti-progressive and destabilizing to the central Asian region? This would be laughable if it were not for the fact that the neo-cons are once again using the Big Lie to further their ambitions of global domination and worldwide fascism. The 911 attacks are beginning to look more and more like the Reichstag Fire, both engineered to bring about fascist control.”
All signs point not to a transmission out of a mountain cave, but more likely out of Langley, Virginia office, and the desk of amateurish (and frankly, poorly-read) propaganda operatives.
In other ways, the new transmission is telling as a measure of how far the Bush administration has fallen. “Osama” is open to “a long-term truce on fair conditions”, and a solution that “prevents the wasting of billions of dollars that have gone to those with influence, and merchants of war in America who have supported Bush’s election campaign with billions of dollars”. These are almost the words of a neoliberal Democrat. Is this “Osama” talking peace—or the Bush neocon propaganda writers conceding that its own game is so lost, that its favorite war propaganda image has had to be recharacterized and rescripted?
The inconsistency of the “voice” raises yet another question. It is time for some “Bin Laden expert” to explain how “Osama” has gone from the fanatical gibberish of previous transmissions, to the statesman-like, William Blum-gushing nuance of this new one.
Unfortunately, there are still plenty among the indoctrinated American sheeple who would still jump through this propaganda hoop in unquestioning and ignorant Pavlovian fashion, every time Dick Cheney tells them to. This includes the so-called anti-war Left, the majority of the Democratic Party faction, and elite Left “progressives”, all of whom have enthusiastically supported the “war on terrorism” lie from day one—-serving the ultimate interests of the New World Order.
This includes William Blum himself, who apparently believes that “Osama” is alive and real, and that the transmissions have been authentic. His fine work notwithstanding, Blum’s own failure to grasp parapolitcal realities is symptomatic of a broader malady, which plays into the hand of Bush forces.
Perhaps the real end game of Bush propaganda forces is the creation of rifts and the sowing of even more dissension within the anti-war/anti-imperialist ranks, rendering the establishment of a mass and powerful anti-war movement impossible.
What the world must continue to take seriously is not a threatened strike by “Osama”, but the violent desperation of a stumbling New World Order (the ultimate creator of “Osama”, and the paymasters of “Al-Qaeda” and “Islamic terrorism”), and a Bush administration that will resort to anything to save itself. As it was on the morning of 9/11, all eyes must remain locked on the guilty parties in Washington and the openly criminal Bush administration, with the means, motive and opportunity to wreak havoc.