On Tuesday, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton arrived in Tripoli bringing with her millions of dollars of U.S. aid to the interim government and a message of peace and encouragement to the Libyan people. As reported by The Washington Post, her talks focus on “how we set the table for a long-term, completely different partnership between the United States and Libya that is deep and broad.”

Be it a coincidence or a pre-planned move, the day before Ms. Clinton’s trip to Libya, several American newspapers published a story disclosing that the Pentagon had planned to use cyber-attacks against Muammar Gaddafi’s air defense systems. The exact manner in which the U.S. military had planned to disrupt the country’s air defense system and thus secure U.S. and NATO aircrafts, still remains classified, but the general picture looks as such: massive hacker-like penetration would have disrupted all computer networks of the Libyan military and prevented early-warning radars from gathering information and relaying it to missile batteries.

Why the U.S. decided not to use these techniques is also not entirely clear. One reason might have been that they just ran short of time since such operations need a lot of preparation. On the other hand, it is possible that they did not want to provoke and set an example for other countries possessing advanced computer technologies.

In any case, if such techniques had been used it would have set a precedent of a completely new type of warfare, presently known only from Hollywood blockbusters. The advantages of such warfare are obvious – the party being more advanced than the adversary, can feel 100 percent safe and operate deadly weapons inflicting strikes on enemy targets, even while comfortably sitting in their own bedrooms.

What is even more dangerous for the adversary is that sometimes it is not so easy to detect where exactly the attack had originated.

In recent times, cyber attacks have already happened several times, hitting vital facilities of the countries listed as foes of the U.S. For example, last year a Stuxnet computer worm affected Iran’s computers, wiping out a part of the nuclear centrifuges and delayed the country’s ability to produce nuclear fuel. Until now, it remains unclear what the source of the virus was, although there is ground to believe that the virus was of Israeli-American origin.

But what remains not so obvious is the fact that no party, even the most advanced one, can feel safe forever. Technology is advancing everywhere, and sometimes it is hard to predict who and may strike back and when.

In August of this year, the former director of the CIA’s Counterterrorist Center Cofer Black said that cyber attacks constitute the next biggest threat to the U.S. security and that the attitude of the U.S. administration to such threats is similar to the attitude towards terrorism before 9/11.

Also, this year there have been several hacker attacks on some American commercial organizations allegedly originating in China. They may not amount to cyber-terrorism or cyber-warfare, but what makes them even more dangerous is that such attacks can be launched by non-state actors and thus are virtually impossible to be detected at early stages and prevented completely.

Many years ago, a famous American science fiction writer Harry Harrison wrote a story picturing a world where no wars are possible because one community has invented an absolute weapon forcing all others to acknowledge its leading role. “Now that any war is impossible,” the father says to his children, “we can use the weapon for peaceful means.”

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The World in Crisis: Time for responsible decision-making

October 18th, 2011 by Global Research

Elaborate efforts are being made by corporate-controlled mainstream media to downplay (if not ignore outright) the mass demonstrations taking place worldwide in the spirit of the Occupy Wall Street movement which began in New York City last month. Mirror protests are springing up globally with momentum and support increasing day by day.

Some of the big-brand media dismiss the protestors as ill-informed youth bored with their workaday lives. Still others point fingers at the attempts being made to infiltrate the movement by the same influential individuals and institutions that have financed and controlled earlier mass movements and so-called color revolutions, intent on aligning them with Western military and corporate interests.

Whatever one may believe at this point, there can be no denying that unprecedented numbers of people, of all ages and creeds, are increasingly frustrated by the governmental controls and machinations which keep them struggling to make ends meet while effectively jeopardizing their long-term potential to secure an adequate and fair standard of living.

Those who research further have come to see how the markets are manipulated by powerful figures to serve the interests of the few, the elite, the same individuals who control and determine economic trends and invariably direct them in their favour… at the expense of the broader public. As Tony Cartalucci points out:

“As Americans begin pouring into the streets with dissatisfaction, there seems to be some confusion as to who the source of their problem is. That ‘who’ is a corporate-financier oligarchy that has been destroying America for nearly a century and until now, has done a good job of parasitically feeding from America in the shadows.

They are not the “1%.” They are the 1% of the 1%. They are billionaire banksters the Rothschilds, the Federal Reserve and the directors and chairmen of many of the largest corporations on earth including big oil, the military industrial complex, big pharma, big agri, and the corporate media which combine their resources and collective agenda in self-contrived institutions, think-tanks, and working groups to dominate humanity.” (Read: #Occupy Wall Street: Change will not come until we Understand and Rewrite the Entire Balance of Power in America)

And while mainstream media keeps pumping out absurd disinformation of the necessity of invading and crippling sovereign nations abroad in order to bring them “freedom”, the juxtaposition of these “humanitarian wars” with the economic collapse at home is not going unnoticed. (Watch the video: “I am not moving”: Confronting America’s Hypocrisy, which contrasts Barack Obama’s and Hillary Clinton’s statements on freedom and democracy relating to Syria, Egypt, Libya and Iran with the brutal and repressive treatment of peaceful protestors in America.)

Global Research has been bringing you a broad spectrum of voices analyzing these situations and we will continue to do so because we believe that access to information is the key to the truth. We encourage you to read as much as possible and discuss widely the issues on the table. Challenge yourselves and challenge each other, and in that way we will come to identify the real limits to our freedom and democracy and thereby determine the course of action that is right for us. It is time to seek out the truth and engage in responsible decision-making.

You can help Global Research make information available to the widest possible readership. The Internet is a tool that makes access to information easier than ever and it is our major means of connecting with the world. Likewise, our contributors and correspondents are scattered across the globe in order to report the issues with accuracy and insight. We ask that you consider making a donation to Global Research so that we may continue to support independent analysts in their battle against mainstream media disinformation.

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El BCE, fiel servidor de los intereses privados

October 18th, 2011 by Eric Toussaint

Entre julio y septiembre de 2011, por todo el mundo, las bolsas de nuevo sufrieron una violenta sacudida. La crisis se profundiza en la Unión Europea, y en particular respecto a sus deudas. El CADTM entrevistó a Eric Toussaint con el objetivo de descodificar los diferentes aspectos de esta nueva fase de la crisis.|1|

CADTM: El 8 de agosto 2011, el BCE comenzó a comprar títulos de Estados europeos en dificultades. ¿Cuál es tu opinión?

Eric Toussaint: Primera precisión importante: los medios anunciaron que el BCE recomenzaba a comprar títulos sin aclarar que esas compras de títulos de los Estados en dificultad se haría, como de costumbre, únicamente en los mercados secundarios. El BCE no compra títulos de la deuda griega directamente al gobierno griego, los compra a los bancos en el mercado secundario. Y por eso los bancos estaban tan contentos el 8 de agosto de 2011. En efecto, entre marzo de 2011 y el 8 de agosto de este año, el BCE, según sus propias declaraciones, había dejado de comprar títulos en el mercado secundario. Eso molestaba a los bancos, ya que en su afán de librarse de los títulos griegos y de otros países con problemas, tuvieron que vender, durante ese periodo, en el mercado secundario a precio de saldos. La mayor parte de ellos restringieron sus ventas cuando el precio era muy bajo. |2| Y es por eso por lo que presionaron al BCE para que reanudara sus compras.

CADTM: Así que la vuelta del BCE al mercado secundario hace remontar el precio de los títulos griegos ¿no es así?

Eric Toussaint: Sí, pero eso fue momentáneo y lo más importante es que el BCE compra netamente por encima del precio de mercado y en muy grandes cantidades. Entre mayo de 2010 y marzo de 2011, el BCE compró títulos griegos por 66.000 millones de euros a los banqueros y otros inversores institucionales. Entre el 8 y el 12 de agosto de 2011, o sea, en cinco días, compró por un valor de 22.000 millones de euros en títulos griegos, irlandeses, portugueses, españoles e italianos. La semana siguiente, compró aún más, por 14.000 millones de euros. No se sabe la parte que corresponde exactamente a los títulos griegos, pero vemos que el BCE ha comprado masivamente. Lo cierto es que la recompra de títulos por el BCE permite a los inversores institucionales especular y obtener grandes beneficios.

La cuestión es que los bancos pueden comprar títulos en el mercado secundario o mucho más discretamente en el mercado OTC, que escapan de todo control, a precios reventados (42,5 % de su valor en los días siguientes al 8 de agosto de 2011, e incluso a menos algunas semanas más tarde) y los revende al BCE a un 80 % de su valor. Puede ser que el volumen de este tipo de operaciones que los bancos pueden hacer sea marginal, pero es difícil hacerse una idea clara sobre la realidad de este negocio. Es evidente que es muy rentable y no veo cómo el BCE o las autoridades de los mercados puedan impedirlo, si tuvieran la voluntad de hacerlo.

Hay que decir que las operaciones en el mercado secundario son poco reglamentadas. Pero, sobre todo, que al lado del mercado secundario está el mercado OTC (Over the counter en inglés), sin ningún control de los poderes públicos. Con mucha frecuencia se realizan compras y ventas de títulos de las deudas mediante lo que se llama «ventas al descubierto», es decir, que un comprador, por ejemplo un banco, puede adquirir títulos por decenas de millones de dólares sin pagar nada en el momento de la recepción de los títulos en cuestión.

Y continúa el proceso: el comprador promete pagar, al adquirir los títulos, pero los revende enseguida y con el producto de esa venta pagará su compra, y allí está la prueba de que no compra para usufructuar un bien sino para revenderlo de inmediato, obteniendo un máximo de ganancia (especulación).

El problema es que si el comprador no puede revender los títulos a buen precio o no los puede vender en absoluto, tendrá dificultades para pagar la cuenta. Y esto puede provocar un crash, ya que son sumas astronómicas que están en juego en la medida en que centenares de inversores institucionales intervienen individualmente con montos realmente considerables. Las transacciones sobre los títulos de la deuda pública de los Estados en dificultad llegan a ser de decenas, incluso de centenares, de miles de millones de euros en el mercado liberalizado.

CADTM: ¿Por qué el BCE no compra directamente a los Estados los títulos que éstos emiten en vez de hacerlo en los mercados secundarios?

Eric Toussaint: Porque los gobiernos que crearon el BCE querían reservar para el sector privado el monopolio del crédito con respecto a los poderes públicos. Sus estatutos, así como el Tratado de Lisboa, prohíben, y también a los Bancos Centrales de los países de la Unión Europea, prestar directamente a los Estados. El BCE presta así a los bancos privados, los que a su vez, como otros inversores institucionales, prestan a los Estados. Como indiqué antes, los bancos franceses, alemanes y de otras nacionalidades, revendieron masivamente en 2010 y en el primer trimestre de 2011 títulos griegos. El BCE fue el principal comprador, y pagando un precio superior al valor del mercado secundario.

Como veis, esto permite a los banqueros y otros inversores institucionales todo tipo de manipulaciones, pues los títulos son al portador y los mercados fueron liberalizados. Está claro que los bancos privados presionan al BCE a fin de que compre los títulos a un precio más alto, diciendo que tienen necesidad de desprenderse de ellos para sanear sus balances y evitar una nueva crisis bancaria de gran amplitud.

Los meses de julio y agosto de este año fueron propicios para este chantaje y estas presiones, puesto que en las bolsas se produjo una caída del 15 al 25 %, según los casos, entre el 8 de julio y el 18 de agosto. El precio de las acciones de los bancos acreedores de Grecia, en particular los franceses, prácticamente se hundieron. Presa del pánico, el BCE cedió ante la presión de los banqueros y otros inversores institucionales, y se puso a comprar títulos. Esta intervención del BCE salvó (¿provisoriamente?) la jugada a una serie de grandes bancos, en particular franceses. Una vez más, los poderes públicos salen en auxilio del sector privado. Pero el escándalo concerniente a la actitud del BCE no acaba allí.

CADTM: ¿Qué quieres decir?

Eric Toussaint: Es muy simple. El Banco prestó con un interés muy bajo a la banca privada: del 1 % de mayo de 2009 a abril de 2011, del 1,5 % actualmente, pidiendo a los banqueros privados que recibían ese dinero que depositaran una garantía. Pues bien, los bancos depositaron como garantía unos títulos (que en la jerga se denominan «colaterales») de los cuales perciben, si éstos son griegos, portugueses, irlandeses…, un interés que varía entre el 3,75 % y el 5 % para títulos a menos de un año, mucho más si son títulos a 3, 5 o 10 años…

CADTM: ¿Qué tiene eso de escandaloso?

Eric Toussaint: Lo escandaloso es que los bancos reciben del BCE préstamos al 1 o al 1,5 % para prestárselo a ciertos Estados a por lo menos el 3,75 %. Una vez que compraron los títulos y que percibieron esta remuneración, hacen un doblete: depositan estos títulos como garantía, obtienen un nuevo préstamo del BCE a un tipo muy bajo y prestan este dinero a corto plazo a los Estados a un interés más alto. Nuevamente, el BCE les permite embolsar jugosos beneficios.

Y eso no es todo, el BCE modificó a partir de 2009-2010 sus criterios de seguridad y de prudencia, y acepta que los bancos depositen en garantía títulos de alto riesgo, lo que evidentemente estimula a estos bancos a prestar sin miramientos, ya que tienen la seguridad de poder revenderlos al BCE o depositarlos como garantía. |3|

Por lo tanto, es lógico pensar que el BCE debería actuar de otra manera y prestar directamente a los Estados al 1 o 1,5 %, sin regalar nada a los banqueros.

CADTM: Sí, ¿pero realmente el BCE podría hacerlo a pesar de que sus estatutos y el Tratado de Lisboa se lo prohíben?

Eric Toussaint: Una serie de disposiciones del Tratado ya no se respetan (como la ratio deuda/PIB, que no puede ser mayor del 60 %, la ratio déficit público/PIB, que no puede exceder del 3 %), por lo que, visto las circunstancias, se podría pasar por alto esa disposición. Además se debe derogar los diferentes tratados de la UE, modificar radicalmente los estatutos del BCE y refundar la Unión sobre otras bases. Pero, por supuesto, es necesario modificar totalmente la relación de fuerzas por medio de movilizaciones en la calle.

Fin de la tercera parte

Traducido por Griselda Piñero y Raúl Quiroz

 

Notas

|1| Veáse la primera parte « Grecia » y la segunda parte « La gran liquidación de títulos griegos »

|2| En el Hellenic Republic Public Debt Bulletin, nº 62, junio de 2011, p. 4, se ve claramente que el mercado secundario se había literalmente secado a partir de mayo de 2011, ya que el BCE compraba los títulos.

|3| Probad, en el momento de pedir un crédito importante a un banco, de dar como prueba de solvencia títulos de alto riesgo y veréis la respuesta.

VIDEO: Courts Rule US Government Above the Law

October 18th, 2011 by James Corbett

Media Manipulation: Are Conflict Photos Staged?

October 18th, 2011 by Anthony Cuthbertson


This article first appeared on whowhatwhy.com



A photograph or video can be misleading. The adage that “the camera never lies” has itself never seemed more unreliable— in an age where visual documentation can present a warped or even entirely false picture of events for purposes of propaganda or sensationalism. The toppling of the statue of Saddam Hussein in Firdos Square is a famous example of how what’s reported does not necessarily reflect reality. On that occasion, what was portrayed in the western media as a spontaneous demonstration against a hated dictator by his former subjects was in fact an event orchestrated for cameras by American-led coalition forces. Recently, Italian photographer Ruben Salvadori has offered a new perspective on photojournalism within the context of conflict by turning his camera back onto his fellow journalists. His photo essay Photojournalism Behind the Scenes explores the process of conflict-image-production in an area of East Jerusalem where Palestinian riots against Israeli forces are a weekly occurrence. In the accompanying video Salvadori questions the role and influence of journalists in conflict situations by “breaking the taboo of the invisible photographer.”

This may be seen as the latest salvo in what has been variously dubbed ‘Pallywood’ and ‘Hezbollywood’ by pro-Israeli media watchdog advocates, terms used to describe the phenomenon of manufacturing documentation about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In 2005 Boston University professor Richard Landes produced the documentary Pallywood: According to Palestinian Sources, alleging specific instances of media manipulation designed to win the public relations war against Israel. It was a rebuttal in kind to the 2004 documentary Peace, Propaganda and the Promised Land, which accused the US media of distorted and pro-Israel coverage on most of the major news networks. Both documentaries presented specific examples of intentional misrepresentation or invention of reported events by the media.

Photojournalism Behind the Scenes sheds new light on how the situation in Israel and Palestine continues to be as much a war waged through means of PR and the media as it is a physical conflict. By drawing attention to this hidden dimension of the conflict, it offers a criticism of the media industry’s demands for dramatic photos – demands that have led some journalists to look for and create drama where there is none. Developing his project beyond this area, Salvadori now aims to investigate other conflict zones such as Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Photojournalism Behind the Scenes [ITA-ENG subs] from Ruben Salvadori on Vimeo.

Global Research Editor’s Note

How accurate is this poll. Do people reveal their opinion in a poll conducted by a foundation from a NATO country.

Fully 60 percent of Afghans fear that the country will descend into civil war once NATO forces leave, but over half see the Western alliance as occupiers. A new survey carried out be the Konrad Adenauer Foundation has found that the mood in Afghanistan is worsening.
 
The troops are there, according to the mission statement, to “provide a secure environment for sustainable stability.” But 10 years after NATO entered Afghanistan to drive out al-Qaida beat back the Taliban, a majority of the local population has come to see the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) as little more than occupiers.

According to a survey published on Tuesday by the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, 56 percent of Afghans now see the foreign troop contingent as an occupying force. Furthermore, only 39 percent of those surveyed said they saw ISAF as a guarantee for security, well down from the 45 percent result found in the same survey in 2010. Fully 60 percent think that the country will descend into civil war once NATO forces withdraw.

Babak Khalatbari, head of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation’s Afghanistan office, said on Tuesday that the results were “a matter of concern.”

The survey has been completed each year since 2008 and is carried out in conjunction with the National Centre for Policy Research at the University of Kabul. Some 5,000 Afghans were interviewed in five provinces in late September. Though the Konrad Adenauer Foundation warns that the poll is not strictly representative, the results are broadly consistent with the impression most in the West have about Afghanistan: The situation appears to be worsening.

Far from Subdued

“The survey results show that in Afghanistan, there appears to be an increasing amount of anxiety and fear rather than hope,” Khalatbari said.

With a decade having elapsed since the US and NATO marched into Afghanistan…many in the West have begun to see the mission as a failure. Security in the country is perceived as fragile and the Taliban are far from subdued.

Indeed, violence in the country has increased in recent years, though NATO released a report on Saturday indicating that the number of Taliban attacks has dropped sharply in recent months compared to the same late summer period in 2010. The alliance is planning to withdraw combat troops by 2014 and turn over responsibility for security entirely to Afghan forces. The survey found that a mere 22 percent of Afghans are satisfied with the security situation in the country, though there were significant geographical variations.

Whereas 33 percent if those living in the western province of Herat were satisfied, just 7 percent found security up to snuff in Nangarhar, in the far east of the country.

But even as Afghans have an increasingly negative view of NATO troops, their view of the Taliban is plummeting as well. In 2010, 74 percent of those surveyed were in favor of talks with the Islamists; this year, that number has dropped to 63 percent. Only 51 percent would be in favor of granting the Taliban a share of power in the country, down 10 percentage points from last year.

The survey likewise did not reflect well on Afghanistan’s political leadership under President Hamid Karzai. Just 31 percent of those surveyed are pleased with the work of their government, down four percentage points from last year. In the capital Kabul, just 17 percent thought the government was doing a good job. Trust in state institutions is also abysmal. Just 28 percent of those surveyed had faith in the country’s ministries and agencies.

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For reasons known only to government officials, the Harper government’s Office of Religious Freedom (ORF) – which is supposed to be a central plank of Canadian foreign policy – is being instituted under a cloak of secrecy.

This includes government officials in closed door consultations with religious groups and academics, as well as Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird spending half a day with representatives of the Baha’i and Christian faiths, among others, as well as some religious scholars. This raises the question: what’s the real purpose of ORF?

Recently, on the CBC radio program The House, national reporter Louise Elliot attempted to find some answers.

First of all, it may not be a coincidence that the Baha’i community is a focus of the government initiative because, since its founding in the mid-1800′s, there were reports that its members have faced torture and execution in Iran – an arch-enemy of right-wing government in North America.

Notwithstanding, many Baha’i are enthusiastic about the government’s initiative. Susanne Tamas, director of government relations for the Baha’i Community of Canada, and one of several people invited to a special closed door consultation with Mr. Baird, welcomed the ORF with open arms. “We think it’s a wonderful thing for the world that there be some learning done,” she said.

After claims that Christians are being driven out of Iraq by Al Qaeda, and Copts are being assaulted and killed in Egypt, Mr. Baird told the UN general assembly he’s pleased that his government is making religious freedom a priority.

While government insiders have said that the government plans to model the ORF office after the U.S Office of International Religious Freedom – which along with the parallel office of the Commission of International Religious Freedom, are housed within the US State Department. The U.S ORF was established in the late 1990′s, after the passage of the Freedom from Religious Persecution Act. Conservative House Leader Peter Van Loan insisted Canada will have a different approach to its ORF.

“In fact our whole approach to religion and religious freedom is exactly the opposite of the United States. In the United States there’s a clear separation of church and state. Our constitution actually established things like rights for Catholic schools, for Protestant schools; for example, those kinds of rights were proactively reflected in our constitution, so we have a different approach.”

However, critics of the government’s plan are concerned that the ORF may actually be promoting a hierarchy of human rights, with Christianity taking precedence over other religions. Harper himself is an evangelical Christian who fully supports Israel as a state for Jews only getting ready for the second coming of Christ.

Academics wonder if the ORF will ever study the systematic discrimination of Muslim and Christian natives of Palestine in the Jewish state itself or in the Occupied West Bank, Arab East Jerusalem or Gaza.

Tellingly, even U.S. officials cautioned against such an approach. When the Conservative announced their plans for the Office of Religious Freedom, during last spring’s election campaign, The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom said: “Don’t make the same mistakes that we did. This office really should be multifaith, multireligious, representing the many communities that are out there experiencing religious persecution; and if it only focuses on one religion it won’t work.”

Prof. Arvind Sharma, who teaches religious studies at McGill University and recently published a book entitled The Problem of Hyping Religious Freedom, is not only concerned that ORF will be used by missionary religions – especially Christian missions, but it will be interpreted by them as giving them the right to proselytize.

“I agree that the right to change one’s religion is a part of religious freedom, but I don’t agree that my right to change my religion is symmetrical with somebody else’s right to ask me to change my religion,” Prof. Sharma said.

He cited several examples of aid groups tying their assistance to religious conversion; for example, in Indonesia during the tsunami, or Iraq during the Gulf War.

He added that western promotion of religious freedom has actually led to a backlash in several countries and he hopes the Harper’s government will consider the many ways the term religious freedom has been misused, as it sets out on this rocky road.

Meanwhile, Janice Buckingham, head of a satellite campus of Trinity Western University in Ottawa, with many years experience at the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada, raising awareness of religious persecution, said that countries like Germany have signalled they will pursue religious freedom by focusing on the issue of conversion in Muslim countries, something she said would be a huge mistake for Canada. However, she insists that Canada will still have to take a tough stand – particularly in countries like Afghanistan and Libya.

“We would not find it acceptable that our Canadian forces have lost their lives; Canadians have lost their lives to promote freedom and democracy in these countries, and then to accept some kind of form of government that is going to undermine and turn their backs on that kind of freedom and just democracy for some people in the country.”

While she may be right that Canadians will find this unacceptable, the decade in Afghanistan has shown that there is no military solution to these problems; and it remains to be seen just how far the Conservative government will actually go in promoting religious freedom around the world and how effective its efforts will be in the longer term.

Cerro Rico, Potosi: The Mine that Funded an Empire

October 18th, 2011 by Tom Clifford

For US$9 a day, workers toil in the bowels of a mine that once funded an empire.

When the Spanish came to Cerro Rico (Rich Mountain) in the 16th century, they hoped to find gold. But the cone-shaped mountain looming over the city of Potosi and now riddled with makeshift tunnels and unstable shaft systems produced silver.

“You could build a silver bridge from the mountain to Madrid from what was mined here,” said Freddy Suarez, a guide who takes visitors to see Cerro Rico.

 “For 20 years I worked in the mine after starting at 10. My father was a miner here too. There is still as much silver in there as has been taken out, but it is getting harder to get to and more dangerous. Tunnel collapses are common and the dangers our ancestors faced are still present.”

A century after the Spanish arrived, Potosi was one of the biggest cities in Latin America and the wealthiest in the world. The busy extraction of silver and other minerals also made it the largest site of physical exploitation in the world, right through the 17th century.

 “Vale un Potosi” (It is worth a Potosi) became a commonly used expression to describe vast wealth, after Quixote blurted it out in Cervantes’s Don Quixote.

 But the apparent wealth of Potosi, the highest city in the world at 4,090 metres, overlooked the human sacrifice that made it possible.

 Countless natives were taken into forced servitude to toil in the mines alongside African and Indian slaves, working in squalid and extremely dangerous conditions. While records of fatalities were not kept, historians and geologists estimate that about eight million perished in Potosi during the Spanish colonial period, from 1546 to 1825.

 “Miners believe that their ghosts are still in the mines,” Mr Suarez said, adding that Cerro Rico’s nickname – The Mountain That Eats Men – is still used today.

 After coming out of Potosi’s cobbled, narrow streets, the road up to the mine is dotted with stalls selling cigarettes, dynamite, ammonia and soft drinks to tourists, all meant to be given as presents to the miners.
 Small treats, perhaps, given the lives these men lead.
 
Working conditions in the mine are primitive: the air is unbearably hot and stuffy due to a lack of ventilation and is thick with dust generated from the blasting of rocks. The tunnels are poorly lit and narrow, restricting the workers’ movement. The only signs of modernity are the pneumatic drills that have replaced pick axes.

Lung disease, mercury poisoning and exhaustion cause sickness and death among the miners, whose life expectancy is less than 40 years. And accidents, especially with dynamite and falls from unstable ladders, are still common.

 “Hear that?” said Mr Suarez, as a tapping sound rang out on the ventilation pipes. “It means there are going to be explosions, the number of taps indicate the number of blasts. Four taps, four blasts.”

 Mr Suarez took the tour group down two levels for shelter from the explosions. “We will wait here until we get the all clear,” he said, before a series of blasts shook the mine and dust rained down through the tunnels.

 “Before the dust settles, the rocks are carried up in bags to different levels and then loaded on to containers and then pushed out in ore carts where other miners sift through for silver deposits.”

 In the lower levels, where adults cannot squeeze through, children wriggle in to extract rocks that may have silver or the less precious zinc.

Working for 10 hours a day the miners chew coca leaves to suppress hunger and fear. A firm golf ball-sized wodge is formed in the mouth and typically lasts for a whole shift. No food is eaten in the mine as miners believe this would make them less alert. Women are prohibited except in tour groups.

 “There are 250 miners who work officially in here but 8,000 people work around the mine in analysing the output,” Mr Suarez said.

 “Miners get 65 bolivianos a day (Dh33) and work six days a week. However, there is nothing stopping miners freelancing and they get paid according to what they can carry out themselves in their own hands.

 “This is often very little, say a couple of bolivianos a day, but they all dream of finding a lump of silver.”

 Juan, Enrique and Miguel spend their shifts on level five, deep in the bowels of the mountain. They drill the holes then stuff them with dynamite.
 
“I have been working here for five years,” said Juan, 18. “We try to keep track of the silver seam but with the dust it can be hard to see. Also there are other minerals down here like zinc, not as valuable as silver. We try to
avoid a zinc seam, there is no money in it.”

Working deep inside Cerro Rico has given rise to a dark sense of humour among those who spend their days there.

“We are underground like those in the cemetery,” said Enrique, 19, caked in dust and struggling for breath, with red eyes and a mouth full of coca leaves. “Except they are better looked after.” 

A principios de año, el pueblo de Túnez logró tumbar a Ben Alí, el cual huyó del país el 14 de enero de 2011, después de 23 años de una dictadura apoyada por los llamados países “desarrollados”. Seis meses más tarde, Ben Alí fue condenado a pena de cárcel (en rebeldía, porque huyó a Arabia Saudita, donde esta protegido) y a pagar 46 millones de euros de multa. Pero… ¿Es eso suficiente? Desde la caída del régimen dictatorial, Túnez afronta una deuda externa pública de alrededor de 10.000 millones de euros. Ésta sirvió para enriquecer al clan de Ben Alí, cuya fortuna se estima en 3.500 millones de euros, así como para imponer Planes de Ajuste Estructural que afectan a la población con duras medidas de austeridad. Esta deuda, en su mayor parte, se califica como odiosa, ya que no benefició a la población, sino que sirvió para fortalecer y enriquecer un régimen despótico. Todo ello con pleno conocimiento de los acreedores, en este caso, verdaderos corruptores. Según el argumento jurídico de la deuda odiosa, elaborado por Alexander Sack en 1927, una deuda contraída no para satisfacer las necesidades y los intereses del pueblo, sino en contra de todo ello, es “una deuda de régimen personal del poder que la contrajo, y, en consecuencia, deja de tener validez cuando ese poder cae”.

En febrero de 2011, en el seno del Foro Social Mundial, la sección tunecina del Comité para la Anulación de la Deuda del Tercer Mundo (CADTM) lanzó en Dakar una campaña internacional para la condonación de la deuda contraída por el dictador Ben Alí. Desde entonces, cerca de cien parlamentarios europeos han apoyado la iniciativa de auditar la deuda tunecina |1| . Desde España, el grupo Patas Arriba |2| de Valencia se solidariza con la campaña, al igual que lo hizo la red ¿Quién debe a Quién? a nivel del Estado Español |3|.

En Egipto, desde que Mubarak se convirtió en Presidente en 1981, tras el asesinato de su predecesor, Anwar el-Sadat, el pueblo egipcio ha reembolsado el equivalente a 68.500 millones de dólares en concepto de deuda externa. Sin embargo, durante el mismo periodo, la deuda no cesó de aumentar, pasando de 22.000 a 33.000 millones de dólares. Al igual que pasó en Túnez, la deuda contraída por el régimen de Mubarak es en su mayor parte odiosa, y por lo tanto, conforme al Derecho Internacional, es nula y no tiene validez, por lo que debería simplemente repudiarse.

Del otro lado del Mediterráneo, en Grecia, la comisión independiente para auditar la deuda pública griega ya está en marcha. Ésta se creó como consecuencia de una propuesta llevada a cabo por un grupo de parlamentarios, movimientos sociales y ciudadanos. En Irlanda, las organizaciones Afri[http://www.afri.ie/],  Debt and Development Coalition Ireland [http://www.debtireland.org/], junto con el sindicato Unite [http://www.unitetheunion.org/], han impulsado una comisión ciudadana e independiente para una auditoría de la deuda.

Dentro del Estado español, el debate ya está en la calle. Desde diferentes movimientos sociales como el de los indignados se empieza a pensar en impulsar esta herramienta de participación ciudadana. ¿Vamos a aceptar la hemorragia de recursos hacia los acreedores responsables de la crisis que están padeciendo los más humildes? ¿Vamos a seguir pagando una deuda que no nos benefició, que no debemos, pero que sigue recompensando a los que arruinaron al Estado? o más bien ¿vamos a auditar la deuda pública, repudiar la parte ilegítima, odiosa o ilegal y castigar a los responsables de la crisis?

Victorias sociales son posibles

Cuando, en 2002, Argentina decretó la mayor suspensión de pago de la historia—la deuda era de unos 100.000 millones de dólares—, muchos pronosticaron una ola de represalias financieras y comerciales sobre el país. Pero en realidad, Argentina se encontraba en una posición de fuerza con sus acreedores privados y la renegociación de la deuda desembocó en 2005 en una renuncia de más del 55% del valor de los títulos por parte de los tenedores. A partir de ese momento, Argentina creció y demostró que es posible decidir no pagar la deuda externa, o al menos una parte, y mejorar la economía y el nivel de vida de su pueblo, por supuesto siendo conscientes que todavía existen grandes desigualdades sociales en el país. Además, desde la crisis de 2001, Argentina ha dejado de reembolsar su deuda a los países ricos agrupados en el Club de Paris |4|. Este hecho es silenciado e invisibilizado por los medios y el mismo Club, por lo que nos preguntamos ¿Es posible que estas personas tengan miedo de un efecto contagio a otros países endeudados? ¿Temen la idea de Thomas Sankara (asesinado el 15 de octubre de 1987) y de Fidel Castro de fomentar un frente de países endeudados unidos contra el pago de la deuda?

En  2007/2008, Ecuador suspendió el pago de una parte de sus deudas mientras realizó una auditoría oficial con participación ciudadana que permitió al Gobierno renegociar títulos, ya que en gran parte eran ilegítimos. Esto permitió al gobierno ecuatoriano el ahorro de más 2200 millones de dólares del stock, más 300 millones de dólares al año en concepto de intereses y esto durante 20 años. Este dinero se dedica ahora a la mejora de la sanidad y educación pública.

En Islandia, la movilización social logró hacer dimitir al Gobierno a finales de 2008. Después de haber desembolsado centenares de millones de euros para re-nacionalizar los tres principales bancos islandeses (Kaupthing, Landbanski y Glitnir) —totalmente privatizados en 2003— el pueblo islandés se sintió engañado y se movilizó masivamente para que los verdaderos responsables de la crisis pagasen el coste de ésta. Mediante referéndum, las islandesas y los islandeses rechazaron el 9 de abril de 2011, por segunda vez, el reembolso de la deuda ilegítima Icesave, que contemplaba la nacionalización de deudas privadas |5|.

La historia nos enseña muchos otros casos. En 1914 en plena revolución, México (por entonces el país más endeudado del continente) suspendió por completo el pago de su deuda externa y en 1942 los acreedores renunciaron aproximadamente al 80 % del valor de sus créditos.

No satisfaremos la reestructuración de deudas, permitiendo alargar en el tiempo el reembolso, sin cambiar nada de este sutil instrumento de dominación. No podemos aceptar tampoco una moratoria sólo de reembolso de capital, ya que incluso en estos casos, muchas veces los intereses continúan vigentes. Para conseguir la justicia real, tenemos que exigir una moratoria del pago de la deuda con congelación de intereses, y facilitar así la realización de una auditoría independiente y ciudadana de la deuda pública de España |6|. Como se dice en Grecia: ¡No debemos, no pagamos!

En consecuencia, seria para todo el beneficio del pueblo, averiguar quiénes contrajeron esas deudas y a quiénes beneficiaron los créditos; difundir los resultados a la ciudadanía y ver qué parte sirvió para enriquecer las elites corruptas, para comprar armamento ilegítimo o para estafar al tesoro público. Los resultados de una auditoría ciudadana empoderarían al pueblo para que éste luchase por su soberanía y sus derechos. La auditoria, si se realiza con participación ciudadanía, puede ser una herramienta útil para la emancipación de los pueblos.

¡Basta de imponernos recortes sociales para reducir un déficit consecuencia de políticas fiscales injustas y de salvamento a la banca!

¡No reembolsaremos deudas ilegitimas!

PATAS ARRIBA,
grupo Attac – Cadtm – Quién debe a Quién Valencia

 

Notas

|1| Por una auditoria de los créditos europeos otorgados a Túnez. Llamamiento de parlamentarios europeos y nacionales. http://www.cadtm.org/Llamamiento-de…

|2| http://patasarribavlc.blogspot.com/

|3| Ver :  http://www.quiendebeaquien.org/spip…

|4| El Club de Paris reagrupa representantes de los 19 países más ricos en la sede del ministerio francés de Economía. Ver su pagina : www.clubdeparis.fr

|5| Ya el 6 de marzo de 2010, los islandeses habían rechazado ese pago con una aplastante victoria: en torno al 93% dijeron no al pago. La ciudadanía a través del Estado debía reembolsar 3.900 millones de euros a Inglaterra (2.600 millones de euros a 3,3 % de interés) y Holanda (1.300 millones de euros a 3 % de interés) hasta 2046.

|6| Aunque la mayor parte de la deuda española es privada, corre el riesgo de socializarse y es en nombre de la deuda pública que se imponen violentos planes de austeridad al pueblo.

 

Statement by the Editorial Board of The Organizer Newspaper

Tens of thousands — if not hundreds of thousands — of people have taken to the streets over the past four weeks across the United States as part of an Occupy Wall Street movement to protest the intolerable conditions of massive unemployment, growing inequality, rampant home foreclosures, and stepped-up cuts in the social safety net. Their outrage has been especially focused against the bailout of Wall Street, while Main Street has been left to languish, and the takeover of the political system by big-money interests.

A growing number of trade unionists have joined this movement, first as individual workers, then as part of an increasing number of union contingents that have joined the OWS activists to build large protest actions, often with more focused political demands.

One of the largest actions in the San Francisco Bay Area, for example, witnessed thousands of union and community activists — mostly Black and Latino — marching to Wells Fargo Bank on October 12 in response to a call by the union-based Jobs with Justice, Causa Justa and other organizations to demand an immediate halt to home evictions and a moratorium on foreclosures. Their leaflet included the following wording:

“We are the 99%. From Wall Street to Market St., we demand an end to racist profiteering off of foreclosure and immigrant detention! We demand full employment, social services and civil liberty for all. From San Francisco to Kabul, we demand an end to corporate war and militarism that target communities of color, tearing our families and planet apart.”

This explosion of anger against the unbridled greed of the capitalists — particularly the banksters and speculators — is legitimate. The protesters speak for millions of people in this country. They speak for the working-class majority. They speak for the 99% — all of whom have said in one form or another, “Enough is Enough!”

Obama and Democrats Seek to Co-Opt the Movement

President Barack Obama says he shares the values of the Occupy movement. “I think people are frustrated, and the protesters are giving voice to a more broad-based frustration about how our financial system works,” Obama declared.

MoveOn.org, Progressive Democrats of America and many other liberal groups have explicitly urged their supporters to join OWS to help steer this movement toward their overall goals, including their goal of “stopping the right wing in November 2012″ — by which they mean vote for Obama. Some prominent figures are calling for the OWS to play the same role in relation to the Democratic Party that the Tea Party has played in relation to the Republican Party.

But what is the Obama administration doing? What is the record of his administration? The Obama administration had a majority in the Congress. It could have challenged Wall Street and begun to implement the change that the millions of people across the nation had demanded when they voted for Obama in 2008. But it did just the opposite. It bailed out the banksters and speculators to the tune of more than $4 trillion — more than half of which is still sitting in the Wall Street coffers collecting interest while more than 27 million people are unemployed and more than 50 million people face foreclosures.

And today, Obama and the bipartisan congressional “Super Committee of 12″ are pushing forward with even more devastating plans. Obama, in keeping with the “Grand Bargain” deal he had struck with House Majority Leader John Boehner last spring regarding the budget deficit, is urging the “Super Committee” to enact cuts of up to $3.5 million in the social safety net — particularly in Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid — over the next 10 years.

The program most immediately targeted by the politicians in the pay of the Wall Street operatives is Medicaid, which affects the lives of 58 million recipients and their family members. Forty-nine percent of Medicaid recipients are children, 25% are adults, 10% are older Americans, 15% are disabled, and all are low-income.

Cuts to Medicaid are especially dangerous for Blacks and Latinos, who are more likely to rely on this vital program. If people on Medicaid lose their benefits, the results will be greater illness and disability, increased poverty, and even death.

This is why the central question facing the OWS movement — and the working class majority as a whole — is putting an end to the murderous cuts against working people, beginning with an end to the cuts in Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid — all of which are imposed by the Wall Street/credit agencies’ dictates, in the name of balancing the budget deficits.

The demand that needs to be raised louder and louder to ensure the independence and fighting unity of this movement is: “Make Wall Street Pay For the Crisis, NOT Working People! STOP THE CUTS AND CONCESSIONS, NOW!”

And this demand — coupled with specific demands to address the crisis such as “Nationalize the Banks!” or “Repossess the $2.2 Trillion in the Wall Street Coffers to Fund a Public Works Program to Put 27 Million People Back to Work!” — must be addressed to the politicians in Washington. They are the ones who make the decisions. They are the ones who can make Wall Street pay.

Responsibility of the Trade Union Officials

Toward this end, the entire working class, beginning with the trade unions and their community partners, needs to be mobilized. It is the responsibility of the trade union officials to organize everywhere this mass mobilization, independently of the Democratic and Republican parties, which have been bailing out the banksters and pushing the bosses’ austerity measures. And this all-out mobilization of the working class has to take place at the federal, state and local levels.

The trade unions have the means to organize these mass mobilizations and strike actions to demand: “No more concessions! Make Wall Street Pay for the Crisis!” With the growing momentum created by the OWS movement, the time is now for labor and its community allies to pull out all the stops and organize the kind of fightback that can put a stop to the ruling-class assault and turn things around in the interests of the working-class majority.

But, clearly, the trade union officials are not doing this. AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka has given lip service in support to the OWS movement, but he has not called out all the troops to take to the streets to demand “Stop the Cuts!” or “Jobs For All!” Instead, he is urging union members and their supporters to support Obama’s new Jobs Act, which at best would create jobs for 1 to 2 million people, while furthering depleting the Social Security fund to pay for his jobs program — which is unacceptable.

Likewise, Leo Gerard, president of the United Steelworkers of America (USWA), has lavished great praise upon the OWS, but only to urge the movement to help labor fight the Republicans in 2012.

This “support” by the labor officialdom for the OWS is a convenient way for them to get off the hook. It is easy for the labor officials and their Democratic Party allies to point their fingers at Wall Street. Even the Tea Party people have targeted Wall Street and the Federal Reserve Bank. But the union tops are not putting any resources into mobilizing their members, and — more important — they are not confronting the politicians that have enabled the Wall Street fat cats to get even fatter on the backs of working people.

The labor officialdom’s silence in relation to the impending assault on Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid is deafening. Without a doubt, a deal has been struck between Obama and Trumka to get labor to go along with these cuts in exchange for a pledge by Obama to seek some meager sources of tax revenue from Wall Street and the rich.

What Way Forward?

In the San Francisco Bay Area, a large number of local trade unions have come together with a wide array of community organizations in a Re-Fund California coalition. They are calling for major protests in San Francisco and Long Beach, California, on November 9-17, when the regents of the University of California and the California State University systems gather to discuss implementing major tuition increases and program cuts (including cuts to ethnic studies departments statewide) that would further devastate these once proud public university systems.

The Re-Fund California call states, in part:

“Our growing movement is not a moment too soon. This week, state budget analysts are expected to propose about $2.5 billion in new cuts to education. …

“Our November Week of Actions will come on the heels of thousands taking to the streets this month. Our Week of Actions are about making Wall Street and the rich pay.”

The California Faculty Association has called for strikes at two CSU campuses (East Bay Hayward and Dominguez Hills) during this period to demand NO CUTS!

Student and union activists — including general assemblies of the Occupy Wall Street movement at campuses such as San Francisco State University — are coming together across California to support this November Week of Actions. Demanding “No Cuts, No Concessions!” and building mass mobilizations, organizing walkouts and sit-ins, and promoting strike actions on other CSU campuses are the order of the day.

“No Cuts to the Social Safety Net!”

Building on the momentum of the OWS movement and forging united-front coalitions such as those taking shape in California to stop the cuts in public education can and must take place across the country around this or other crucial demands of concern to working people.

Most important, these actions can become stepping stones in the fight to stop the massive cuts in the social safety net — perhaps the biggest attacks ever on the working class and all the oppressed in the history of this country.

In the San Francisco Bay Area, trade unions and their community allies are beginning to organize for a mass action the first week of December to demand “No Cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. The “Super Committee of 12″ is expected to release its recommendations to the Congress at the end of November, and the Congress is expected to vote on these recommendations before the end of the year.

The San Francisco Labor Council is organizing a teach-in on October 24 to educate about the impending attacks on the social safety net and to build a coalition — together with other Bay Area labor councils, CARA, Jobs with Justice, and other community organizations — with the aim of organizing a mass action in the streets that can send a powerful signal that working people will not accept the cuts. Similar teach-ins and coalitions can and must be organized all across the country.

Most important, if working people are to succeed in forcing the Congress to say “No” to the Cuts in the social safety net, it will be necessary for the AFL-CIO, Change to Win, the NAACP, the main retiree organizations — and all the organizations that over the past four weeks have supported the Occupy Wall Street movement — to draw a line in the sand and fight the cuts by any means necessary, including organizing a one-day walk-out/sick-out/strike/day of action, together with the OWS movement, around the specific demand of “NO Cuts, No Concessions!”

To get there, it will be necessary to organize “No Cuts/No Concessions Committees” in unions and community organizations to (1) build local actions against the cuts in the social safety net and (2) press the national leadership of the trade union movement to issue a national call to action against these cuts, preferably during the first week of December.

The tide of resistance is rising. The time for action is now!

Il grande gioco africano

October 18th, 2011 by Manlio Dinucci

Dopo che il «Protettore Unificato» ha demolito lo stato libico, con almeno 40mila bombe sganciate in oltre 10mila missioni di attacco, e fornito armi anche a gruppi islamici fino a ieri classificati come pericolosi terroristi, a Washington si dicono preoccupati che le armi dei depositi governativi finiscano «in mani sbagliate». Il Dipartimento di stato è quindi corso ai ripari, inviando in Libia squadre di contractor militari che, finanziati finora con 30 milioni di dollari, dovrebbero mettere «in stato di sicurezza» l’arsenale libico. Ma, dietro la missione ufficiale, vi è certo quella di assumere tacitamente il controllo delle basi militari libiche. Nonostante il declamato impegno di non inviare «boots on the ground», operano da tempo sul terreno in Libia agenti segreti e forze speciali di Stati uniti, Gran Bretagna, Francia, Italia, Qatar e altri, che hanno guidato gli attacchi aerei e diretto le operazioni terrestri. Loro compito, ora, è assicurare che la Libia «pacificata» resti sotto il controllo delle potenze che sono andate a «liberarla». Il 14 ottobre, lo stesso giorno in cui il Dipartimento di stato rendeva noto l’invio di contractor in Libia, il presidente Obama annunciava l’invio di forze speciali in Africa centrale, all’inizio un centinaio di militari. Loro compito ufficiale è quello di «consiglieri» delle forze armate locali, impegnate contro l’«Esercito di resistenza del Signore». Operazione finanziata dal Dipartimento di stato, finora, con 40 milioni di dollari. Il compito reale di questi corpi d’élite, inviati da Washigton, è creare una rete di controllo militare dell’area comprendente Uganda, Sud Sudan, Burundi, Repubblica centrafricana e Repubblica democratica del Congo. E mentre gli Stati uniti inviano proprie forze in Uganda e Burundi, ufficialmente per proteggerli dalle atrocità dell’«Esercito del Signore» che si dice ispirato al misticismo cristiano, Uganda e Burundi combattono in Somalia per conto degli Stati uniti, con migliaia di soldati, il gruppo islamico al-Shabab. Sostenuti dal Pentagono che, lo scorso giugno, ha fornito loro armi per 45 milioni di dollari, compresi piccoli droni e visori notturni. Il 16 ottobre, due giorni dopo l’annuncio dell’operazione Usa in Africa centrale, il Kenya ha inviato truppe in Somalia. Iniziativa ufficialmente motivata con la necessità di proteggersi dai banditi e pirati somali, in realtà promossa dagli Stati uniti per propri fini strategici, dopo il fallimento dell’intervento militare etiopico, anch’esso promosso dagli Stati uniti. E in Somalia, dove il «governo» sostenuto da Washington controlla appena un quartiere di Mogadiscio, opera da tempo la Cia, con commandos locali appositamente addestrati e armati e con contractor di compagnie miltari private. Gli Stati uniti mirano, dunque, al controllo militare delle aree strategiche del continente: la Libia, all’intersezione tra Mediterraneo, Africa e Medioriente; l’Africa orientale e centrale, a cavallo tra Oceano Indiano e Atlantico. Il gioco, apparentemente complicato, diventa chiaro guardando una carta geografica. Meglio su un atlante storico, per vedere come il neocolonialismo somigli in modo impressionante al vecchio colonialismo.

More than 20 Radioactive Hotspots Found in Tokyo … All Due to Citizen Measurements

I noted last week that Tokyo and the adjoining city of Yokohama were found to contain “hotspots” with very high levels of radiation, and that all of the hotspots were originally found by citizens using geiger counters, because the government wasn’t really testing.

On the same day I posted, the New York Times reported:

The patch of ground was one of more than 20 spots in and around the nation’s capital that the citizens’ group, and the respected nuclear research center they worked with, found were contaminated with potentially harmful levels of radioactive cesium.

***

Reports that substantial amounts of cesium had accumulated as far away as Tokyo have raised new concerns about how far the contamination had spread, possibly settling in areas where the government has not even considered looking.

The government’s failure to act quickly, a growing chorus of scientists say, may be exposing many more people than originally believed to potentially harmful radiation. It is also part of a pattern: Japan’s leaders have continually insisted that the fallout from Fukushima will not spread far, or pose a health threat to residents, or contaminate the food chain. And officials have repeatedly been proved wrong by independent experts and citizens’ groups that conduct testing on their own.

“Radioactive substances are entering people’s bodies from the air, from the food. It’s everywhere,” said Kiyoshi Toda, a radiation expert at Nagasaki University’s faculty of environmental studies and a medical doctor. “But the government doesn’t even try to inform the public how much radiation they’re exposed to.”

***

Japanese nuclear experts and activists have begun agitating for more comprehensive testing in Tokyo and elsewhere, and a cleanup if necessary. Robert Alvarez, a nuclear expert and a former special assistant to the United States secretary of energy, echoed those calls, saying the citizens’ groups’ measurements “raise major and unprecedented concerns about the aftermath of the Fukushima nuclear disaster.”

***

Of the 132 areas tested, 22 were above 37,000 becquerels per square meter, the level at which zones were considered contaminated at Chernobyl. [One of the readings is much higher even than those commonly found in the Chernobyl exclusion zone, confirming reports from Dr. Christopher Busby from August.]

***

Japan’s relatively tame mainstream media, which is more likely to report on government pronouncements than grass-roots movements, mainly ignored the citizens’ group’s findings.

Indeed, as Voice of America noted yesterday:

While the news about [high levels of radiation found at one Tokyo] ballpark complex had been reported overseas, including on the front page of Saturday’s New York Times, it had yet to be mentioned in Japan’s mainstream media.

Nikkei is reporting today that a primary school in Tokyo has been measured at 4 microsieverts per hour.

Reuters notes that even in cities relatively far from Fukushima, radiation will be a problem for decades to come:

“I doubt the problem will go away in a year or two. It takes 30 years for caesium 137 to decay by half. Each time it rains, caesium deposited in mountains will be washed down to where people live,” Kobe University professor Tomoya Yamauchi said.

In related news, a leaked Tepco document allegedly shows that 120 billion Becquerels of plutonium and 7.6 trillion Becquerels of neptunium were released into the air in the first 100 hours after the earthquake, and yet the media concealed the risk to public.

New thermal images released by Tepco appear to confirm that the radioactive cores are not within the containment vessels.

And NHK and Tepco have allegedly confirmed that steam was escaping from underground back in June, something Fukushima workers have alleged for some time.

Speak out for the release of Mushaima

 
Mr Hassan Ali Mushaima, 63, has been denied proper treatment for his Lymphoma Cancer since his arrest in March. With seven other political leaders, he has recently been sentenced to life imprisonment for his role in leading the civil resistance movement seeking to establish a democratic government  in Bahrain. Before his arrest he had been treated at the Royal Brompton Hospital and where he was cleared of the disease and placed on remission treatment. However, the news that are emerging from behind bars in recent weeks have been shockingly worrying.
 
Since his arrest, Mr Mushaima has been subjected to severe physical and psychological torture, including beating, electric shocks, deprivation of sleep, exposure to extreme forms of heat and cold environment as well as sexual abuse. It has now been revealed that his remission treatment has not been implemented. Instead he was given three doses while blindfolded by men whose character are unknown to him. He suffered several ailments that required his transfer to the military hospital on more than one occasion.
 
Mr Mushaima’s family have expressed their fear for his life as his condition deteriorated and he often appeared dis-orientated. Lack of access to proper treatment has had an adverse effect on his physical and psychological state. Despite repeated calls for his release, the Al Khalifa regime and the Saudi occupation forces have adopted more sinister approaches in order to break the will of the Bahraini prisoners, especially Mr Hassan Mushaima, the most senior opposition figure in jail.
 
Justice for Bahrain is deeply concern about Mr Mushaima health and demand the immediate medical attention and call for the immediate release of Mr Hassan Mushaima and the rest of the leading figures and the end of the human rights violations in Bahrain.
 

Justice for Bahrain will be holding a vigil against the silence of the British Government at the continued human rights violations in Bahrain, the supply of British weapons to the regime despite earlier official assertions that licenses had been withdrawn and the apparent approval of the Saudi occupation of Bahrain.
 

Please Join us to show you Solidarity with the Bahrain Political  and Human Rights Activists

Where: Downing street

When: Friday 21st Oct 

Time : 5:00 PM To 7:00PM

 We urge you to join us and Together we Say No More to the Human Rights Violations in Bahrain 

For More info please contact 

Justice for Bahrain on 

[email protected]

07766500524

US Begins Huge Military Maneuvers Aimed at Iran

October 18th, 2011 by Paul Joseph Watson

Battle-ready troops on standby as tensions rise following dubious assassination plot

The United States will this week commence huge military maneuvers aimed at Iran, with a massive air fleet patrolling middle eastern skies ready to land at any time, in response to Irans involvement in an alleged assassination plot that experts have labeled dubious, amidst fears that US and Israeli targets could be hit by attacks.


 
As we reported last week, during US Defense Secretary Leon Panettas October 3 Tel Aviv visit, Israeli hawks attempted to persuade Panetta to give the green light for a military strike on Iran. Within ten days, details of an alleged assassination plot against a Saudi ambassador emerged and the foiled attack was blamed on Iran. Innumerable experts immediately voiced their doubts about the authenticity of the plot, with 21-year CIA veteran Robert Baer labeling the story a truly awful Hollywood script.

The US military will respond this week with a series of significant military maneuvers designed to threaten Iran, including, an American air fleet in Middle East skies ready to land at any moment for any contingency, reports DebkaFile.

The United States launches a large-scale exercise over the Middle East deploying 41 giant transports of the 22nds Airlift Squadron Monday Oct. 17, states the report, adding that the aircraft will be packed with fully equipped, battle ready troops.

A further seven warships from the Stennis Battle Group will also provide ground troops with combat support and strike land and sea targets.

The Israeli, Egyptian and Saudi armies have also been placed on maximum preparedness, echoing reports that U.S. troops being sent to the region have also been put on full alert.
The maneuvers are also linked to the scheduled release of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit by Hamas on Tuesday, an event that US intelligence officials fear could set off a chain of attacks in the region against US and Israeli targets. Should embassies be targeted, US troops will be in place to react swiftly.

Geopolitical experts have been consistent in their warnings that Israel was preparing to strike Iran this fall.

Back in July, CIA veteran Baer told KPFK Los Angeles that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was planning an attack on Iran in September to coincide with the Palestine bid for UN membership.

Whether the maneuvers are merely designed to be an act of belligerence against Iran or represent preparations for an actual military strike in support of Israel remains to be seen, but as Gulf News reporter Patrick Seale pointed out Friday, the window of opportunity for an attack on Iran is closing.

Some western military experts have been quoted as saying that the window of opportunity for an Israeli air attack on Iran will close within two months, since the onset of winter would make such an assault more difficult, writes Seale, adding that the Israelis eagerness to launch the attack has caused considerable alarm in Washington and in a number of European capitals.

Both Republican and Democratic US lawmakers have issued strong statements against Iran in recent days, with several all but calling for war. Last week, New York Republican Peter King called on the Obama administration to put troops on standby, labeling the alleged Iranian assassination plot an act of war. On Sunday, Democrat Dianne Feinstein, the head of the Senate Intelligence Committee, warned that the US and Iran were on a collision course.

US deploys Special Forces troops to central Africa

October 18th, 2011 by Eddie Haywood

US President Barack Obama has deployed roughly 100 special operations troops to central Africa, as part of an offensive targeting the leadership of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA). The LRA is a rebel group that has engaged in fierce battles with the Ugandan government for over two decades.

In a letter to the U.S. Congress, Obama announced the arrival of a small team of “combat-equipped” advisors in Uganda, as of last Wednesday. The letter to Congress from Obama states that the goal of the U.S. troop deployment is “to assist African forces in the removal of [LRA leader] Joseph Kony and the leadership of the LRA from the battlefield.”

Obama added, “The LRA continues to commit atrocities across the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and South Sudan that have a disproportionate impact on regional security. … Regional military efforts have thus far been unsuccessful in removing LRA leader Joseph Kony or his top commanders from the battlefield.”

The US troops will remain in the region over the next month, also deploying to the surrounding countries, including South Sudan, the Central African Republic, and Congo. The Pentagon confirmed that most of the 100 troops being deployed are Special Forces soldiers.

Map copyright World Atlas

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni’s subservience to US imperialism is once again on display, as he supports and cooperates with the US deployment. Ugandan army spokesman Felix Kulaigye told Reuters: “We didn’t solicit this support, but now that it has come we welcome it. Kony is a regional security menace and the earlier we end it, the better.”

Obama and Museveni both attempted to downplay the significance of the deployment. Obama claimed it was “time-limited” to only a few months. Reuters commented, “The limited terms of engagement appeared aimed at reassuring war-weary Americans that Obama has no plans to entangle US forces directly in another conflict, when they are already involved in wars in Afghanistan in Iraq and are playing a supporting role in a NATO-led air campaign in Libya.”

Museveni cynically objected to calling the US soldiers deploying to Uganda “troops,” trying to defuse opposition to a US deployment to Uganda. He said: “Better to call them US personnel, not troops. When you call them troops, you are saying they are coming to fight on our behalf. We shall never have troops coming to fight for us. I cannot accept foreign troops to come and fight for me. We have the capacity to fight our own wars.”

Such comments only underscore the fact that there is mass popular opposition in Africa and the United States to the extension of US military violence across Africa that is now being planned.

The US already operates a major military base at Camp Lemonier in Djibouti, which coordinates US surveillance and strike aircraft flying over Yemen and Somalia, and US military operations in eastern and central Africa more broadly. This is part of a recent series of US- or Western-backed aggressions in Africa, including the US-led war in Libya and the French-led overthrow of Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo in April.

This operation also continues the US government’s policy of extra-judicial killing of figures Washington claims to be terrorists, outside the jurisdiction of any court of law. This is part of the ongoing repudiation of democratic forms of rule by the American bourgeoisie during the “war on terror.”

The US has threatened the LRA for years, since designating it a terrorist organization in 2001. Since 2008, the US government has defined the LRA as a “Specially Designated Global Terrorist” group. In May 2010, the Obama administration signed the “Lord’s Resistance Army Disarmament and Northern Uganda Recovery Act.” As the Economist noted, this act makes it U.S. policy “to kill or capture Joseph Kony and crush his rebellion once and for all.” The act was passed unanimously by the US Congress, highlighting the US ruling class’s bipartisan support for this policy.

The LRA is a religious sectarian militia headed by Joseph Kony, who claims to be a “spokesperson” of God. Inspired by a combination of mysticism and Christian rhetoric, it has been accused of carrying out many atrocities over the past twenty-five years–including the abduction of children to fight for the militia, the keeping of sex slaves, raping of women, and the deaths of thousands of people.

Washington’s intervention is not motivated by concern over these atrocities, many of which are committed by US forces in US-occupied countries or US-backed forces across Africa. It is aimed primarily at asserting US imperialist interests in Africa, and counteracting the rising influence of other major powers in the region–particularly China.

Of particular concern to Washington are rising conflicts in the neighboring Sudan, after the partition of the country. South Sudan, which declared independence from Khartoum on July 9 after a referendum, has large oil reserves and enjoys US backing. Sudan is one of China’s top oil suppliers internationally (See: Partition of Sudan prepares way for further conflicts).

Last week South Sudan Interior Minister Alison Manani Magaya claimed that North Sudan is providing support and training camps for the LRA to mount cross-border attacks from Uganda into South Sudan. “They have a training camp at the border between Western Bahr el Ghazal and Darfur, where they are being trained and supplied,” Magaya said. He added that 27 entry points along the Uganda-South Sudan border will be “reinforced” against the threat posed by the LRA.

Magaya’s comments echoed remarks by Hilde Johnson–the UN secretary general’s special representative and the top UN official in South Sudan–who said the LRA is moving to the border between Darfur (North Sudan) and Western Bahr en Ghazal (now in South Sudan).

The US intervention is also dictated by rising concerns over the loyalties of the Ugandan government, as well. According to a US cable released by WikiLeaks, Washington closely follows China’s growing economic influence in Uganda. A cable, dated February 17, 2010, illustrates these concerns: “China’s economic ties to Uganda continue to accelerate on all fronts making it one of the country’s top foreign investors… Greater Chinese investment and assistance in Uganda has generated some resentment due to local perceptions that Chinese investments favor their own businesses.”

Uganda also has growing economic ties to Iran. Iran and Uganda have pursued closer relations, with the agreement by Iran to fund Uganda’s oil sector. At a Tehran meeting in May 2009, President Museveni and Iranian President Ahmadinejad met together with Iranian commerce officials to hammer out an agreement for increased bilateral economic cooperation. It included provisions for the construction of an oil refinery in Uganda and measures allowing Ugandan petroleum officials to train at the Petroleum University of Technology in Tehran.

Libya NTC Rebels in Retreat in Sirte. Renewed NATO Bombing

October 17th, 2011 by Global Research

Libya’s NTC steps back after heavy fighting with Gaddafi remnants in Sirte

TRIPOLI: Fighters of Libya’ s ruling National Transitional Council (NTC) on Sunday retreated from several positions in the northern coastal town of Sirte, so as to allow NATO to bomb sites that are holding up the remaining forces of the previous leadership.

According to a source close to the NTC, their fighters fought fierce battles on Sunday with the diehard loyalists of fallen leader Muammar Gaddafi at the Dollar district and the so-called Area Two of Sirte, hometown of the country’s 42-year-long ruler.

The battles forced the NTC fighters to pull back, which will give way to NATO’s aircraft and heavy artilleries aiming at hideouts of the pro-Gaddafi forces, said the source, who asked to remain anonymous.

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The latest quarterly report from the Office Of the Currency Comptroller is out and as usual it presents in a crisp, clear and very much glaring format the fact that the top 4 banks in the US now account for a massively disproportionate amount of the derivative risk in the financial system.

Specifically, of the $250 trillion in gross notional amount of derivative contracts outstanding (consisting of Interest Rate, FX, Equity Contracts, Commodity and CDS) among the Top 25 commercial banks (a number that swells to $333 trillion when looking at the Top 25 Bank Holding Companies), a mere 5 banks (and really 4) account for 95.9% of all derivative exposure (HSBC replaced Wells as the Top 5th bank, which at $3.9 trillion in derivative exposure is a distant place from #4 Goldman with $47.7 trillion). The top 4 banks: JPM with $78.1 trillion in exposure, Citi with $56 trillion, Bank of America with $53 trillion and Goldman with $48 trillion, account for 94.4% of total exposure. As historically has been the case, the bulk of consolidated exposure is in Interest Rate swaps ($204.6 trillion), followed by FX ($26.5TR), CDS ($15.2 trillion), and Equity and Commodity with $1.6 and $1.4 trillion, respectively. And that’s your definition of Too Big To Fail right there: the biggest banks are not only getting bigger, but their risk exposure is now at a new all time high and up $5.3 trillion from Q1 as they have to risk ever more in the derivatives market to generate that incremental penny of return.

At this point the economist PhD readers will scream: “this is total BS – after all you have bilateral netting which eliminates net bank exposure almost entirely.” True: that is precisely what the OCC will say too. As the chart below shows, according to the chief regulator of the derivative space in Q2 netting benefits amounted to an almost record 90.8% of gross exposure, so while seemingly massive, those XXX trillion numbers are really quite, quite small… Right?

…Wrong. The problem with bilateral netting is that it is based on one massively flawed assumption, namely that in an orderly collapse all derivative contracts will be honored by the issuing bank (in this case the company that has sold the protection, and which the buyer of protection hopes will offset the protection it in turn has sold). The best example of how the flaw behind bilateral netting almost destroyed the system is AIG: the insurance company was hours away from making trillions of derivative contracts worthless if it were to implode, leaving all those who had bought protection from the firm worthless, a contingency only Goldman hedged by buying protection on AIG. And while the argument can further be extended that in bankruptcy a perfectly netted bankrupt entity would make someone else whole on claims they have written, this is not true, as the bankrupt estate will pursue 100 cent recovery on its claims even under Chapter 11, while claims the estate had written end up as General Unsecured Claims which as Lehman has demonstrated will collect 20 cents on the dollar if they are lucky.

The point of this detour being that if any of these four banks fails, the repercussions would be disastrous. And no, Frank Dodd’s bank “resolution” provision would do absolutely nothing to prevent an epic systemic collapse. 

Lastly, and tangentially on a topic that recently has gotten much prominent attention in the media, we present the exposure by product for the biggest commercial banks. Of particular note is that while virtually every single bank has a preponderance of its derivative exposure in the form of plain vanilla IR swaps (on average accounting for more than 80% of total), Morgan Stanley, and specifically its Utah-based commercial bank Morgan Stanley Bank NA, has almost exclusively all of its exposure tied in with the far riskier FX contracts, or 98.3% of the total $1.793 trillion. For a bank with no deposit buffer, and which has massive exposure to European banks regardless of how hard management and various other banks scramble to defend Morgan Stanley, the fact that it has such an abnormal amount of exposure (but, but, it is “bilaterally netted” we can just hear Dick Bove screaming on Monday) to the ridiculously volatile FX space should perhaps raise some further eyebrows…

The Alleged Iran Saudi Envoy Assassination Plot: Mossad at Work

October 17th, 2011 by Dr. Ismail Salami

Despite its evidently make-believe facade, the cooked-up story of the Saudi envoy assassination plot does not seem to be something which can be easily banished from the minds of the American powers that be.

The heat over Iran in the US government is growing rapidly. Some Republican congressmen have expressed their interest in waging an all-out war against Iran, a threat they keep refreshing every time they have an excuse. They have clearly stated that Washington should not dismiss the idea of resorting to military force against Iran, an idea which is being strengthened in Congress.

“I don’t think you should take it off the table,” Michigan Representative Mike Rogers, chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, has said.

It is quite natural that he was vehemently supported by the former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Senator John McCain, who have always maintained an antagonistic approach towards Iran.

Hawkish Gingrich said on CNN, “Our goal should be the replacement of the Iranian dictatorship, and we have done nothing of consequence to systematically undermine the regime.”

The US government keeps preaching at others and talking of dismantling this or that regime which they term as ‘dictatorial’ or ‘sponsor of terrorism’. Now that the lot has fallen to the US government itself, they are at a loss and appear despondently desperate. The implosive voice that is eroding the American system from within cannot be easily smothered or contained. Therefore, the US has to find a way to divert international attention from what is going on in the country and zoom in on Iran. This can be one simple reason but it is very plausible. However, a bigger scenario is at work in collaboration with the Mossad and other intelligence services.

However, Washington’s political equation was abruptly disturbed when a top ISI official revealed that the man involved in the alleged assassination plot of the Saudi envoy Adel al-Jubeir had received forged documents from Mossad.

“The accused man [Mansour Arbabseir] received fake ID documents from Mossad three months ago,” the Pakistani Urdu-language Ummat Daily quoted the Inter-Services Intelligence officer as saying on condition of anonymity.

According to the Pakistani intelligence expert, the man in question was slated to carry out an operation codenamed Foss Fling for the notorious Israeli intelligence agency.

In parallel with this appalling revelation, The Independent ran a story about Adam Werritty, an unofficial “chief of staff” to British Defense Minister Liam Fox, his best man and former flat mate who accompanied him on a number of official visits and virtually made all his decisions and even held top level meetings. Things went wrong though when it became manifest that he had in February arranged a meeting between Fox and senior Mossad operatives at a security conference taking place in Herzliya, near Tel Aviv, where they discussed effective plans to overthrow the ‘Iranian regime’. Werritty was said to have regularly met Iranian anti-government groups, Israeli operatives and right-wing US groups with an overwhelming interest in destabilizing President Ahmadinejad and overthrowing the Islamic government.

According to the report, Werritty had travelled to Iran on several occasions and held secret meetings with opposition groups with the express intention on expediting the fall of the Islamic government in Iran. Interestingly, MI6 was informed of his connections and debriefed him after he returned from overseas trips.

Werritty was financially backed by murky sources such as Bicom, an Israeli advocacy organization based in the UK. Bicom which stands for Britain Israel Communications Research Center is in fact a front organization based in London tasked with security and intelligence activities as well as promotion of Zionism. Apart from garnering support for the Zionist regime among Britons, the office also serves as a bridge between Mossad and MI6. The CEO of the office, Lorna Fitzsimons, a former MP, is noted for her constant support for the Zionists. She used to be a member of the campaign group, Labor Friends of Israel (LFI). It is basically a lobby group promoting Zionism within the British Labor Party in particular and in Britain, in general. And Werritty is an influential member of the organization and a highly regarded agent for Mossad.

These postulations aside, there has recently emerged an interesting piece of information about a second person held on suspicion of involvement in the alleged plot. The information reveals a man named Gholam Hussein Shakouri who is closely connected with the fabricated prime suspect. Shakouri, who is a cousin of Mansour Arbaseir, is reportedly a member of the MKO, a notorious terrorist organization now based at the Ashraf camp in Iraq and strongly supported by the US government although the organization has been widely designated as a terrorist organization.

The loosely-structured assassination plot is part of an extensive espionage and sabotage network supported and co-funded by the Israeli intelligence agency Mossad and CIA.

The marriage of the pernicious intelligence agencies e.g. Mossad, CIA and MI6 in trying to sabotage and cripple the Islamic government indicates a diligently wrought out plan over many years and one which has been heavily funded.

In the final analysis, what seemed at first to be a simplistic effort by the US to corner Iran into political isolation has begun to branch out into ramifications of Kafkaesque proportions.

Ismail Salami is an Iranian author and political analyst. A prolific writer, he has written numerous books and articles on the Middle East. He i the webpage editor of Press TV in Tehran.

On October 11, Attorney General Eric Holder, flanked by the FBI Director and the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, accused the government of Iran, specifically the elite Quds battalion of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), of plotting to assassinate the ambassador of Saudi Arabia to the U.S, Adel Al-Jubeir.

So what do we know about this alleged conspiracy? And what are the facts pertinent to this explosive charge?

1) The alleged conspirator, Mansour Arbabsiar, is a 56 year old naturalized American of Iranian descent. He has been living in several Texas communities since the late 1970s when he arrived to the U.S. as a student. By all accounts, Arbabsiar led a disorderly life marked by constant failure, whether as a student, husband, father, or businessman.

For over two decades the alleged “mastermind” left behind a trail of successive failed businesses, including a used car lot, a restaurant, a convenience store, and a finance company. One of his friends told the Washington Post that he is “a goofy guy who always had a smile on his face.”

Arbabsiar was neither an ideologue nor religious. His nickname among his close friends was “Jack” because of his affinity for Jack Daniel’s whiskey. Last year, he was arrested for felony possession of a narcotic. According to public documents, his former wife accused him of spousal abuse and filed a protective order against him in 1991.

2) The complaint (so far it is not even an indictment by a grand jury) charges that Arbabsiar allegedly conspired with a high official of the Quds battalion of the IRGC. According to the complaint he was recruited by this official – who is also supposedly his cousin – when he visited Iran earlier this year.

There is plenty of evidence that the Quds Force has been involved in many militant anti-Western operations in Iraq. It has also been publicly supporting the Palestinian and Lebanese resistance organizations in their struggle with Israel. These activities have earned it the label of “supporter of terrorism” by most Western nations, including the U.S.

But according to Robert Baer, a 21-year veteran CIA operative and analyst, the Quds Force is one of the most professional and disciplined (though deadly) organizations in the Middle East. As reported by CNN, the Quds Force “has never been publicly linked to an assassination plot or an attack on U.S. soil.”

Baer confirmed this fact when he said that “in its 30-year history of attacking the West, the Quds Force went out of its way never to be caught with a smoking gun in hand. It always used well-vetted proxies, invariably Muslim believers devoted to Khomeini’s revolution.”

He then questioned whether the plot was genuine by asking, “Why didn’t the Iranians use tried and tested Hizbullah networks and keep Iranian nationals, much less unknown Mexican narcos, out of it?”

3) We know from the complaint that the U.S government was actually directing the plot (target, location, method of attack, setting the price of the assassination, bank account information, etc.) Pete Williams, NBC’s DOJ correspondent, said that the plot was in fact “a sting operation” directed by the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) and the FBI. A recent report published by New York University Law School showed that in the past decade federal agencies have relied heavily on sting operations, not only in drug busts, but also most significantly in dozens of national security cases “that were planned, financed and executed by the FBI.”

4) According to the official story, we are to believe that, although the price set for the Saudi Ambassador’s assassination by a member of a Mexican drug cartel (who was actually a DEA informant) was $1.5 million, the Iranian handlers expected the assassin to carry it out by advancing him only $100,000 (less than 7 percent of the total amount.)

Moreover, as Baer argued in Time magazine, in three decades of external operations in many countries, the IRGC fingerprints or money transfers were never traced back to Iran, but that Iran has always “enjoyed plausible deniability.” Baer further told CNN that, “it would be completely uncharacteristic for Iran to be caught red-handed.”

Therefore, such sloppy behavior through traceable money transfers and phone intercepts is simply not credible. It appears to be a deliberate attempt to leave behind as many clues as possible to pin this alleged egregious act on Iran.

5) Another hole in this puzzle concerns the possible motive Iran could have by sponsoring such a provocative act. Strategically, Iran has never been stronger in the region. It has been the greatest beneficiary of the U.S. debacle in Iraq and its difficulty in Afghanistan. Furthermore, despite the successive international sanctions imposed on Iran, its nuclear and other military programs have been progressing at an increasingly steady pace, while asserting a growing and dominant role in the region.

Hillary Mann Leverett, an adviser on Iran in former President George W. Bush’s administration, told CNN that this act made no sense, and contradicted Iran’s national security strategy. She stated, “There’s no benefit; there’s no payoff in them pursuing this kind of hit against Adel Al-Jubeir. And it runs contrary to their entire national security strategy.”

If Iran wanted to punish Saudi Arabia it had a plenty of targets in the region, including in Saudi Arabia itself, Iraq, Afghanistan, or the Persian Gulf region in general. If it wanted to target a diplomat, the worst choice would be on U.S. soil where such an act would be easily uncovered and would not go unpunished. It is not clear why Iran would even target a small functionary of the Saudi diplomatic core. Al-Jubeir is neither royalty nor a significant player in Saudi Arabia’s foreign policy.

Since at least 2003, the Iranian national security strategy has been to de-escalate regional tensions and avoid any confrontation with the U.S. or its regional allies, especially Saudi Arabia. It has been in the middle of unprecedented build-up of its military power, especially its navy, nuclear power, and long-range missile programs. Experts believe that it needs at least five more quiet years to finish this phase of its build-up.

6) Ironically, in 2004 the U.S. uncovered an alleged assassination plot by another U.S. national against King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia himself, not his ambassador. In that plot, the U.S. asserted that it confiscated more than $340,000 payoff from former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddhafi for the killing of the Saudi monarch.

The Bush and Blair administrations, which were in bed with Gaddhafi at the time, negotiating the surrender of his nuclear programs, did not threaten or impose any sanctions on the former Libyan regime because of the plot. Although the U.S. sentenced the alleged U.S. conspirator to 23 years in prison, the Saudi king pardoned the alleged assassin who was arrested in Saudi Arabia.

However, this time the reaction by the U.S. and Saudi Arabia was not only swift and harsh, but threatening and escalating.

7) Since the inception of the Arab Spring, Saudi Arabia has been very nervous. It has sent its army to Bahrain to crack down on the popular protests, while bribing its citizens and inviting the monarchs of Jordan and Morocco to join the GCC alliance in order to halt any movements in these countries towards a constitutional monarchy.

Meanwhile, throughout this year the Saudi media has been relentless in its attacks against Iran, presenting it as a “Shi’a” nation and a “Persian” power set on taking over the Arab Sunni countries in the region. It is an old tactic used by authoritarian regimes to focus the public’s attention on an external enemy to deflect from the popular demands for democracy and civil rights and against repression and corruption as demonstrated by the Arab uprisings throughout the region. This alleged plot plays into the hands of those who want to escalate the confrontation with Iran inside Saudi Arabia.

8) But the clear winners of any escalation with Iran are those who want to attack Iran militarily in the region, namely Israel and Saudi Arabia. In one of the Wikileaks documents released recently, the U.S. ambassador to Saudi Arabia cabled back to the State Department that King Abdullah wanted a U.S-led military confrontation with Iran. He said that the Saudi monarch wanted to “cut the head of the snake” in the region.

Moreover, former Mossad chief Meir Dagan, who resigned a year ago, described the current Israeli government as “dangerous and irresponsible.” Last spring he told the Israeli Haaretz newspaper that Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu would attack Iran and that doing so would be “the stupidest thing.” When asked about what would happen in the aftermath of an Israeli attack, Dagan, said that: “It will be followed by a war with Iran. It is the kind of thing where we know how it starts, but not how it will end.”

According to The Forward, twelve of the eighteen living ex-chiefs of Israel’s two security agencies (Mossad and Shin Bet), have been opposing an open war with Iran and are “either actively opposing Netanyahu’s stances or have spoken out against them.”

So the trick for the right wing Israeli government has been how to drag the U.S. into this war and make it an American-Iranian confrontation rather than an Israeli-Iranian conflict.

To sum up, this alleged plot actually raises more questions than it answers. It’s supposedly led by a “goofy”, unsuccessful U.S-Iranian dual citizen, who is neither religious nor ideological; manipulated by an informant of a U.S. law enforcement agency fronting as an assassin for a Mexican drug cartel; recruited without vetting by one of the most elite and disciplined organizations in the world, while paying only 7 percent of the contract to assassinate the ambassador to a country (Saudi Arabia) with which Iran is trying to have a good relationship, in a country (the U.S) with which it is trying to avoid any confrontation, while leaving money transfers, telephone intercepts, and clues behind.

If this sounds illogical, then who is behind this amateurish plot?

It is unlikely that there are so-called rouge elements within the IRGC that want to drag the U.S. into a confrontation with Iran. That would amount to virtual suicide within the Iranian establishment. There is no history of such behavior even when the country was militarily much weaker and politically unstable.

Thus, to best answer the question is to identify those who would benefit the most from a confrontation between the U.S. and Iran. Clearly those who have the most to gain from such a clash are Israel and the Iranian opposition, particularly the Mujahedin Khalq Organization (MKO).

While the former seeks to cripple Iran’s nuclear program, the later has been in a deadly confrontation with the Islamicly-oriented government for decades, and wants to weaken the regime so it could be toppled. Both entities have tried over the years to sponsor terrorist operations and covert actions within Iran and outside to damage the regime or implicate it in external terrorist acts.

It is not beyond the realm of possibilities that the Israeli Mossad or the MKO were able to recruit an idiot or his cousin or both in a plot that involved assassinating the Saudi Ambassador, while leaving a trove of evidence behind to be found in order to implicate the Iranian government.

But assuming the U.S. was not privy to it, despite the plot being a sting operation, the more important question is then why the U.S. government took the bait and escalated the incident to a dangerous course with uncalculated consequences?

The U.S, Israel, and Saudi Arabia can certainly start a war with a more assertive Iran. But they certainly cannot end it. One only has to look at the recent U.S. adventures on either side of Iran’s borders to learn that lesson.

Esam Al-Amin can be reached at [email protected]

Dejvid Svonson, jedan od organizatora pokreta “Okupirajmo Vašington”, dela šireg pokreta “Okupirajmo Volstrit”, govori o širenju protesta protiv finansijskog sektora u Sjedinjenim Državama, o ciljevima tog pokreta i podršci koju dobija.

US Hunger Rate Triple That in China

October 17th, 2011 by Patrick Martin

American workers are now three times more likely than Chinese workers to lack the means of feeding their families, according to a startling new report from the Gallup organization. The polling group found that 19 percent of Americans worried about being able to feed themselves or their families, compared to only 6 percent of Chinese.

The Gallup finding showed a near reversal in the proportions of American and Chinese workers at risk of hunger over the past three years, an indication of the shattering impact of the economic slump brought on by the 2008 Wall Street financial crash. In 2008, 16 percent of Chinese said they at times lacked the money to put food on the table, compared to 9 percent of Americans.

Although China has more than four times the population of the United States, the absolute numbers of hungry people are nearly the same: just under 80 million for China, more than 60 million in America. The similarity is particularly stark given that the United States is the world’s biggest producer and exporter of food.

Gallup’s measure of access to basic social necessities like food and health care, the United States Basic Index Score, fell to 81.4 in September, lower than the worst previous mark during the slump, the 81.5 mark hit in February and March of 2009.

The components of this index detail the deteriorating conditions of life for the American working class. From September 2008 to September 2011, the proportion of Americans with a personal physician fell from 82.5 percent to 78.3 percent. The proportion with health insurance fell from 85.9 percent to 82.3 percent. The proportion who said they had enough money to buy food for themselves and their families declined from 81.1 percent to 80.1 percent.

The findings are derived from one of the most comprehensive surveys of international living standards, interviews with 29,000 people conducted each month over the past three years in 150 countries, including 1,000 in the US and 4,000 in China. The survey encompasses 13 questions about access to food, shelter, clean water, health care and other necessities.

For Americans surveyed, the three indices of social well-being that have declined most sharply were all health-related: having a personal doctor, having health insurance, and visiting a dentist.

The proportion of Americans struggling to afford shelter is up sharply as well—11 percent of Americans said there have been times in the past 12 months when they could not afford decent shelter, up from 5 percent in 2008.

This figure is less than in China, where hundreds of millions still live in rural hovels or are migrant laborers in urban areas, but the trend lines are in the opposite direction. Some 16 percent of Chinese said they had trouble affording shelter, down from 21 percent in 2008.

The US figures show the particularly severe impact of the world slump of the past three years, which has driven US unemployment up above the 9 percent level. Some 25 millions American workers are either unemployed or underemployed.

The official US poverty rate, which grossly understates the crisis, is up from 14.3 percent in 2009 to 15.1 percent in 2010, the fourth consecutive yearly increase. The absolute number of those in poverty is far greater than in 1965, when the Democratic administration of Lyndon Johnson launched its “war on poverty.”

The findings of the Gallup study testify to the combined effect of two world-historical processes. The first is the relative decline of American capitalism, whose once-mighty industrial base has shriveled, and with it, the living standards and social conditions of the working class. The second is the globalization of the world economy, which is leading to the convergence of conditions of life for working people around the world.

Globalization on a capitalist basis inevitably means a convergence downward, as corporations shift capital and production around the world seeking the lowest-cost areas. China was once the benchmark for driving down living standards. Now the transnational companies are exploiting countries in South Asia, Africa and Latin America to drive wages and social conditions even lower.

The only alternative to this process of competitive devaluation of wages and living standards is to place the world economy on a new, socialist basis, through the unification of the international working class in a common struggle against the profit system.

WASHINGTON, Oct 17, 2011 (IPS) – Officials of the Barack Obama administration have aggressively leaked information supposedly based on classified intelligence in recent days to bolster its allegation that two higher- ranking officials from Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) were involved in a plot to assassinate Saudi Ambassador Adel al-Jubeir in Washington, D.C.

The media stories generated by the leaks helped divert press attention from the fact that there is no verifiable evidence of any official Iranian involvement in the alleged assassination plan, contrary to the broad claim being made by the administration.

But the information about the two Iranian officials leaked to NBC News, the Washington Post and Reuters was unambiguously false and misleading, as confirmed by official documents in one case and a former senior intelligence and counterterrorism official in the other.

The main target of the official leaks was Abdul Reza Shahlai, who was identified publicly by the Obama administration as a “deputy commander in the Quds Force” of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. Shahlai had long been regarded by U.S. officials as a key figure in the Quds Force’s relationship to Moqtada al-Sadr’s Mahdi Army in Iraq.

The primary objective of the FBI sting operation involving Iranian- American Manssor Arbabsiar and a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) informant that was started last June now appears to have been to use Arbabsiar to implicate Shahlai in a terror plot.

U.S. officials had learned from the DEA informant that Arbabsiar claimed that Shahlai was his cousin.

In September 2008, the Treasury Department designated Shahlai as an individual “providing financial, material and technical support for acts of violence that threaten the peace and stability of Iraq” and thus subject to specific financial sanctions. The announcement said Shahlai had provided “material support” to the Mahdi Army in 2006 and that he had “planned the Jan. 20, 2007 attack” by Mahdi Army “Special Groups” on U.S. troops at the Provincial Coordination Center in Karbala, Iraq.

Arbabsiar’s confession claims that Shahlai approached him in early spring 2011 and asked him to find “someone in the narcotics business” to kidnap the Saudi ambassador to the United States, according to the FBI account. Arbabsiar implicates Shahlai in providing him with thousands of dollars for his expenses.

But Arbabsiar’s charge against Shahlai was self-interested. Arbabsiar had become the cornerstone of the administration’s case against Shahlai in order to obtain leniency on charges against him.

There is no indication in the FBI account of the investigation that there is any independent evidence to support Arbabsiar’s claim of Shahlai’s involvement in a plan to kill the ambassador.

The Obama administration planted stories suggesting that Shahlai had a terrorist past, and that it was therefore credible that he could be part of an assassination plot.

Laying the foundation for press stories on the theme, the Treasury Department announced Tuesday that it was sanctioning Shahlai, along with Arbabsiar and three other Quds Force officials, including the head of the organisation, Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani, for being “connected to” the assassination plot.

But Michael Issikof of NBC News reported the same day that Shahlai “had previously been accused of plotting a highly sophisticated attack that killed five U.S. soldiers in Iraq, according to U.S. government officials and documents made public Tuesday afternoon”.

Isikoff, who is called “National Investigative Correspondent” at NBC News, reported that the Treasury Department had designated Shahlai as a “terrorist” in 2008, despite the fact that the Treasury announcement of the designation had not used the term “terrorist”.

On Saturday, the Washington Post published a report closely paralleling the Issikof story but going even further in claiming documentary proof of Shahlai’s responsibility for the January 2007 attack in Karbala. Post reporter Peter Finn wrote that Shahlai “was known as the guiding hand behind an elite militia of the cleric Moqtada al Sadr”, which had carried out an attack on U.S. troops in Karbala in January 2007.

Finn cited the fact that the Treasury Department named Shahlai as the “final approving and coordinating authority” for training Sadr’s militiamen in Iran. That fact would not in itself be evidence of involvement in a specific attack on U.S. forces. On the contrary, it would suggest that he was not involved in operational aspects of the Mahdi Army in Iraq.

Finn then referred to a “22-page memo that detailed preparations for the operation and tied it to the Quds Force….” But he didn’t refer to any evidence that Shahlai personally had anything to do with the operation.

In fact, U.S. officials acknowledged in the months after the Karbala attack that they had found no evidence of any Iranian involvement in the operation.

Talking with reporters about the memo on Apr. 26, 2007, several weeks after it had been captured, Gen. David Petraeus conceded that it did not show that any Iranian official was linked to the planning of the Karbala operation. When a journalist asked him whether there was evidence of Iranian involvement in the Karbala operation, Petraeus responded, “No. No. No… [W]e do not have a direct link to Iran involvement in that particular case.”

In a news briefing in Baghdad Jul. 2, 2007, Gen. Kevin Bergner confirmed that the attack in Karbala had been authorised by the Iraqi chief of the militia in question, Kais Khazali, not by any Iranian official.

Col. Michael X. Garrett, who had been commander of the U.S. Fourth Brigade combat team in Karbala, confirmed to this writer in December 2008 that the Karbala attack “was definitely an inside job”.

Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani, the head of the Quds Force, is on the list of those Iranian officials “linked” to the alleged terror plot, because he “oversees the IRGC-QF officers who were involved in this plot” , as the Treasury Department announcement explained. But a Reuters story on Friday reported a claim of U.S. intelligence that two wire transfers totaling 100,000 dollars at the behest of Arbabsiar to a bank account controlled by the FBI implicates Soleimani in the assassination plot.

“While details are still classified,” wrote Mark Hosenball and Caren Bohan, “one official said the wire transfers apparently had some kind of hallmark indicating they were personally approved” by Soleimani.

But the suggestion that forensic examination of the wire transfers could somehow show who had approved them is misleading. The wire transfers were from two separate non-Iranian banks in a foreign country, according to the FBI’s account. It would be impossible to deduce who approved the transfer by looking at the documents.

“I have no idea what such a ‘hallmark’ could be,” said Paul Pillar, a former head of the CIA’s Counter-Terrorism Center who was also National Intelligence Officer for the Middle East until his retirement in 2005.

Pillar told IPS that the “hallmark” notion “pops up frequently in commentary after actual terrorist attacks,”, but the concept is usually invoked “along the lines of ‘the method used in this attack had the hallmark of group such and such’.”

That “hallmark” idea “assumes exclusive ownership of a method of attack which does not really exist,” said Pillar. “I expect the same could be said of methods of transferring money.”

Gareth Porter is an investigative historian and journalist specialising in U.S. national security policy. The paperback edition of his latest book, “Perils of Dominance: Imbalance of Power and the Road to War in Vietnam”, was published in 2006.

As anticipated by LEAP/E2020, the second half of 2011 is seeing the world continuing its unstoppable descent into global geopolitical dislocation characterized by the convergence of monetary, financial, economic, social, political and strategic crises.

After 2010 and early 2011 which has seen the myth of a recovery and exit from the crisis shattered, it’s now uncertainty that dominates the States’ decision-making processes just like businesses and individuals, inevitably generating increasing apprehension for the future. The context singularly lends itself: social explosions, political paralysis and / or instability, return to the global recession, fear over banks, currency war, the disappearance of more than ten trillion USD in ghost-assets in three months, widespread lasting and rising unemployment…

Besides, it’s this very unhealthy financial environment that will cause the “decimation (1) of Western banks” in the first half of 2012: with their profitability in freefall, balance sheets in disarray, with the disappearance of trillions of USD assets, with states increasingly pushing for strict regulation of their activities (2), even placing them under public supervision and increasingly hostile public opinion, now the scaffold has been erected and at least 10% of Western banks (3) will have to pass that way in the coming quarters.

However, in this environment, increasingly chaotic in appearance, trends emerge, the outlook sometimes appears positive… and most importantly, the uncertainty is much less than one might think, if only one analyzes the changes in the world within the framework of the world after the crisis rather than with the criteria of the world before the crisis.

In this GEAB issue, our team also presents its 2012-2016 “country risk” forecast for 40 States, demonstrating that one can depict the situations and identify strong trends through the current “fog of war” (4). In such a context, this decision-making tool is proving very useful for the individual investor as well as the economic or political decision-maker. Our team also presents the changes in the GEAB $ Index and its recommendations (gold-currencies-real estate), including of course the means to protect oneself from the consequences of the coming “decimation of Western banks”.

For this GEAB issue, our team has chosen to present an excerpt from the chapter on the decimation of Western banks in the first half of 2012.

First half of 2012: Decimation of Western banks
In fact, it will be a triple decimation (5) culminating in the disappearance of 10% to 20% of Western banks over the next year:

. a decimation of their staff
. a decimation of their profits
. and lastly, a decimation of the number of banks.

It will be accompanied, of course, by a drastic reduction in their role and importance in the global economy and directly affect banking institutions in other regions of the world and other financial operators (insurers, pension funds …).

An example of bank information at the time of a global systemic crisis Intesa SanPaulo’s stress test results compared to its European competitors (and compared to the first casualty: Dexia) (6)
An example of bank information at the time of a global systemic crisis Intesa SanPaulo’s stress test results compared to its European competitors (and compared to the first casualty: Dexia) (6)
Our team could address this issue like the Anglo-Saxon media, the president of the United States and his ministries (7), Washington and Wall Street experts and, on a wider basis, mainstream media (8), have done recently over all aspects of the global systemic crisis, that’s to say by saying, “It’s Greece and the Euro’s fault!” It would obviously be a virtue to reduce this part of the GEAB to just a few lines and suppress any hint of analysis of the possible causes in the US, the UK or Japan. But, coming as no surprise to our readers, it won’t be LEAP/E2020’s choice (9). As the only think tank to have anticipated the crisis and rather accurately foreseen its various phases, we’re not now going to give up an anticipation model that works well, benefitting from prejudice without any predictive power (Don’t let’s forget that the Euro is still alive and well (10) and that Euroland has just completed the small feat of, in six weeks, putting together the 17 parliamentary votes needed to strengthen its financial stabilization fund (11)). So, instead of echoing the propaganda or “readymade thought” let’s remain faithful to the method of anticipation and stick to a reality that we must uncover in order to understand it (12).

In this case, for ages, when one thinks of “banks” one thinks first of all of the City of London and Wall Street (13). And with good reason, London for over two centuries and New York for nearly a century have both been the two hearts of the international financial system and the lairs par excellence of the world’s major bankers. Any global banking crisis (as any major bank event), therefore, begins and ends in these two cities since the modern global financial system is a vast process of incessant wealth recycling (virtual or real) developed by and for these two cities (14).

The decimation of the Western banks that begins and will continue in the coming quarters, an event of historic proportions, cannot therefore be understood without first of all measuring and analyzing the role of Wall Street and London in this financial debacle. Greece and the Euro will undoubtedly play a role here as we have discussed in previous GEAB issues, but these are triggers: Greek debt is yesterday’s banking venality that is exploding in the public arena today; the Euro is the arrow of the future that is piercing the current financial balloon. These are the two fingers that highlight the problem, but they aren’t the problem. This is what the wise man knows and the fool doesn’t, to paraphrase the Chinese proverb (15).

In fact, one only needs to look at London and Wall Street to anticipate the future of Western banks, since it’s quite simply there that the banking flock gathers together to come and drink its dollar dose every evening. And the condition of the Western banking system can be measured through changes in bank staff numbers, their profitability and their shareholders. From these three factors one can directly deduce their ability to survive or disappear.

The decimation of bank staff numbers

Let’s begin with the numbers then! Here the picture is bleak for banking sector employees (and now even for the “banking system stars”): since mid-2011 Wall Street and London have continuously announced mass layoffs, spread by the secondary financial centers such as Switzerland and Euroland and Japanese banks. A total of several hundreds of thousands of banking jobs that have disappeared in two waves: first of all in 2008-2009, then since the late spring of this year. And this second wave is gradually gaining momentum as the months go by. With the global recession now under way, the drying up of capital flows to the United States and the United Kingdom as a result of the geopolitical and economic changes under way (16), the huge financial losses in recent months, and all kinds of regulations which gradually “break” the super-profitable banking and financial model of the 2000s, the heads of major Western banks have no choice: they must, at any price, cut their costs as quickly as possible and deeply. Therefore, the simplest solution (after that of overcharging clients) is to lay off tens of thousands of employees. And that’s what is happening. But far from being a controlled process, we see that every six months or so Western bank leaders find that they had underestimated the extent of the problems and are therefore obliged to announce further mass layoffs. With the political and financial “perfect storm” looming in the U.S. for next November and December (17), LEAP/E2020 anticipates a new series of announcements of this kind from early 2012. The “cost-killers” in the banking sector have some good quarters in front of them when we see that Goldman Sachs, which is also directly affected by this situation, reduced to limiting the number of green plants in its offices to save money (18). Although, after eradicating the green plants, it’s usually the “pink slips” (19) that flower.

The decimation of the number of banks

In a way, the Western banking system looks increasingly resembles the Western steel industry of the 1970s. Thus the “ironmasters; thought they were the masters of the world (incidentally actively contributing to the outbreak of World Wars); just like our “major merchant bankers” thought they were God (like Goldman Sachs CEO) or at least masters of the universe. And the steel industry was the “spearhead”, the “absolute economic example” of power for decades. Power was counted in tens of millions of tons of steel just like the power of billions in bonuses for merchant bank executives and traders in recent decades. And then, in two decades for the steel industry, in two / three years for the banks (20), the environment has changed: increased competition, collapsing profits, massive layoffs, loss of political influence, the end of massive subsidies and ultimately nationalization and / or restructuring giving birth to a tiny sector compared to what it was at its heyday (21). In a sense, therefore, the analogy applies to what awaits the Western banking sector in 2012/2013.

Share price changes (and, therefore, losses) for the British taxpayer following the partial government takeover of RBS and Lloyds - Source: Guardian, 10/2011
Share price changes (and, therefore, losses) for the British taxpayer following the partial government takeover of RBS and Lloyds – Source: Guardian, 10/2011
Already on Wall Street in 2008, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and JP Morgan had to suddenly turn themselves into “bank holding companies” to be saved. In the City, the British government had to nationalize a whole swathe of the country’s banking system and to this day the British taxpayer continues to bear the cost because the banks’ share prices have collapsed again in 2011 (22). This is also one of the Western banking system’s characteristics as a whole: these private financial players (or market listed) are worth practically nothing. Their market capitalization has gone up in smoke. Of course this creates an opportunity for nationalization at low cost to the taxpayer from 2012 because it’s the choice that will be imposed on States, in the United States as in Europe or Japan. Whether it be, for example, Bank of America (23), CitiGroup or Morgan Stanley (24) in the United States, RBS (25) or Lloyds in the United Kingdom (26), Société Générale in France, Deutsche Bank (27) in Germany, or UBS (28) in Switzerland (29), some very large institutions “too big to fail” will fail. They will be accompanied by a whole swathe of medium or small banks such as Max Bank which has just filed for bankruptcy in Denmark (30).

Faced with this “decimation”, States’ resources will be quickly overrun, especially in these times of austerity, low tax revenues and the political unpopularity of the bank bailout (31). Political leaders will, therefore, have to focus on protecting the interests of savers (32) and employees (two areas full of electoral promise) instead of safeguarding the interests of bank executives and shareholders (two areas full of electoral pitfalls, whose precedent in 2008 demonstrated its economic futility (33)). This will result in a new collapse in financial stock prices (including insurance, considered very “close” the banking situation) and increase hedge funds, pension funds (34) and other players’ turmoil traditionally closely intertwined with the Western banking sector. No doubt this will only strengthen the general recessionary environment by limiting loans to the economy just as much (35).

Global public debt (1990-2010) (as a % of GDP, constant 2010 exchange rates) - Sources: BRI / McKinsey, 08/2011
Global public debt (1990-2010) (as a % of GDP, constant 2010 exchange rates) – Sources: BRI / McKinsey, 08/2011
To simplify the view of this development, one can say that the Western banking market, significantly reducing its scope and the number of players in this market, has to downsize proportionally. In some countries, especially those where the very large banks account for 70% or more of the banking market, it will inevitably lead to the disappearance of one or another of these very large players … whatever their leaders, stress tests or rating agencies say (36). If you are a shareholder (37) or customer of a bank that may collapse in the first half of 2012 there are, of course, precautions to take. We offer a number in the recommendations in this issue. If one is an officer or employee of such an institution, things are more complicated because we now think it’s too late to avoid serial bankruptcies; and the banking job market is saturated because of massive layoffs. However, here is a piece of advice from our team if you are an employee in any of these institutions, if you are made an interesting offer of voluntary redundancy, take it as the next few months, the redundancies won’t be voluntary and will be under much less favorable conditions.

Notes

(1) Decimation was a Roman military punishment by death of one legionnaire in ten when the army had shown cowardice in battle, disobedience or inappropriate behavior. The Roman system of decimation worked by drawing lots.

(2) Regulations that severely excise the banks’ most profitable activities. Source: The Independent, 12/10/2011

(3) Our team believes the percentage to be somewhere between 10% and 20%.

(4) Fog of war to which the mainstream media incidentally contribute to a great extent instead of trying to clarify the situation.

(5) Considering decimation in its widest sense, that’s to say a sharp decrease can be much more than the Roman era’s 10%.

(6) As far as LEAP/E2020 is concerned, this type of classification presages nothing since the current shock is much higher in intensity and duration than the assumptions of the stress tests. And this equally applies to the US banks of course.

(7) Taking everything into account regarding Barack Obama, in difficult position for the next presidential elections because of his disastrous economic record and the deep disappointment of most of those who voted for him in 2007 because of his many broken promises, he must at all costs try to blame anyone or anything for the disastrous state of the economy and American society. So why not Greece and the Euro? When that doesn’t work anymore (in a couple of months), it will be necessary to find something else, but short-sighted management is an Obama administration specialty; no doubt his Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, the faithful Wall Street link, will find another explanation. In any case, it’s not Wall Street’s fault, we can at least be certain of that. Otherwise, the Obama administration will always bring out the “specter of Iran” to try and divert attention from the United States internal problems. Incidentally, this seems to be the current situation with the cock-and-bull story of the attempted assassination of the Saudi ambassador to Washington by Mexican drug traffickers paid by Iranian intelligence. Even Hollywood would balk at the improbability of such a scenario, but to save the “Wall Street” soldier and try to be re-elected, isn’t it worth a try? Sources: Huffington Post, 26/07/2011; NBC, 13/10/2011

(8) This mainstream media (financial or general) have, in fact, a brilliant history in anticipating the crisis. You certainly remember their 2006 headlines warning you against the 2007subprime crisis, announcing the Wall Street “implosion” of 2008 and, of course, in early 2011 telling you of a major return of the crisis in summer 2011! No, you don’t remember? Don’t worry, your memory is good … because they never made the headlines, they never warned you of these major events and their causes. So, if you continue to think that, as they repeat every day, the current problems are caused by “Greece and the euro”, it’s that you think they have suddenly all become honest, intelligent and insightful … and you must therefore also believe in Father Christmas in the same sense. It’s beguiling, but not very effective for facing the real world.

(9) For a long time, our team has been underlining the European difficulties, anticipating rather correctly the evolution of the crisis on the « Old Continent ». But we try not to fall victim of the syndrom of the European tree that hides the forest of major US and UK problems.

(10) A bit of education: those who bet on a Euro collapse a month ago have lost money again. To the rhythm of “the end of the Euro crisis” roughly every 4 months, they won’t have much left by 2012. Whilst the United States for example have not been able to demonstrate their ability to overcome the opposition between Republicans and Democrats on the control of their deficits.

(11) Whilst the United States, for example, have not been able to demonstrate their ability to overcome Republican and Democrat opposition on the control of their deficits.

(12) It’s appalling to see the G20’s preoccupation with the Euro whilst the central issue of the future is the Dollar. Obviously, the huge media manipulation operation launched by Washington and London will have succeeded once again in deferring, for a time, the inevitable questioning of the US currency’s central status. As anticipated by our team, one can expect nothing from the G20 until the end of 2012. It will continue to talk, pretend to act and to actually ignore the key issues; those are the hardest to put on the table. The recent announcements of an increase in resources for the IMF are a part of these empty words that will not be acted upon because the BRICS (the only ones able to augment IMF funds) will not finance an institution in which they continue to only have marginal influence. Meanwhile, these announcements make believe that there is still a shared commitment to international action. The alarm will be all the more painful in the months to come.

(13) If you think of Greece it’s because you are Greek or that you are a manager of shareholder of a bank which has lent too much to the country over the last ten years

(14) And in a way also for the two States involved. But this is already a moot point, and widely discussed for that matter, to know if such financial markets are a blessing or a curse for the States and people that host them.

(15) “When a finger is pointing at the moon, the fool looks at the finger”

(16) Between Euroland’s increasing integration which deprives the City of lucrative markets and closer economic, financial and monetary ties with the BRICS, bypassing Wall Street and the City, they are growing shares of the global financial market escaping London and New York banks.

(17) See GEAB N°57

(18) Source: Telegraph, 19/08/2011

(19) In the United States the « pink slip » is a pink form indicating layoff. Source: Wikipedia

(20) It takes more time to relocate heavy industry than a trader’s desk.

(21) This is, more or less, the procedure followed in the United States and Europe.

(22) See chart above.

(23) Bank of America is definitely at the confluence of major and growing problems: a lawsuit against it claiming $50 billion for concealing losses on the acquisition of Merrill Lynch in late 2008, a massive grassroots rejection by customers following its decision to impose a $5 per month cost for cash cards, a long and unexplained crash of its website; series of trials over subprime involving individual owners and local authorities, and a threat to place Countrywide in bankruptcy, another of its acquisitions in 2008, to limit its losses. According to LEAP/E2020, it embodies the ideal US bank for a crash scenario between November 2011 and June 2012. Sources: New York Times, 27/09/2011; ABC, 30/09/2011; Figaro, 29/06/2011; CNBC, 30/09/2011; Bloomberg, 16/09/2011

(24) The US bank which, in 2008, received the largest slice of public financial support and which, once again, is panicking the markets. Sources: Bloomberg, 30/09/2011; Zerohedge, 04/10/2011

(25) One of the most vulnerable banks in Europe. Source: Telegraph, 14/10/2011

(26) Which itself is also seeing the hour of the cut in its credit rating approach. Source: Telegraph, 12/10/2011

(27) The leading German bank, which is already exposed to a cut in its credit rating. Source: Spiegel, 14/10/2011

(28) UBS is also on the road to a cut in its credit rating. Source: Tribune de Genève, 15/10/2011

(29) Société Générale, Deutsche Bank and UBS have a point in common of particular concern: all three rushed to the US “El Dorado” during the last decade, investing like drunken sailors in the US financial bubble (Deutsche Bank in subprimes, as Société Générale in CDS and UBS in tax evasion). Today, they don’t know how to exit this maelstrom that increasingly drives them to the bottom each day. In passing, we recall that in 2006, we recommended that European financial institutions free themselves from US markets as soon as possible, which appeared very dangerous to us.

(30) Source: Copenhagen Post, 10/10/2011

(31) Even the BBC, certainly marked by the UK riots in summer 2011, asks itself a question, “unthinkable” just a year ago for this type of media: can the United States expect social unrest? To ask the question is to answer it. And in Europe, a country like Hungary, with Social-Nationalist government, directly accused the banks, especially foreign ones, of being responsible for the crisis facing the country. Source: BBC, 20/09/2011; New York Times, 29/10/2011

(32) Of which an increasing number have begin to rebel against banking system practices, especially in the United States where Wall Street rejection is growing exponentially, weakening major US banks on a daily basis. Sources: CNNMoney, 11/10/2011; MSNBC, 10/11/2011

(33) And it’s even worse than economic futility since a recent study had shown that banks that received public financing were subsequently shown to be the most prone to make risky investments.Source: Huffington Post, 16/09/2011

(34) US public pension funds are now facing a financial chasm estimated at between one and three trillion USD. Will the US public authorities choose to save the banks or their retirees? Because they will soon have to choose. Source: MSNBC, 23/09/2011

(35) Source: Telegraph, 02/10/2011

(36) None of these banks are able to withstand the global recession and the implosive melding of financial assets that will prevail in the coming months.

(37) We could have also developed the point that we are witnessing a process of “bank shareholder decimation”

Alleged Iranian Plot: Is the Evidence Credible?

October 17th, 2011 by Sherwood Ross

“If the Obama administration truly believes it has credible evidence that Iran was behind this alleged plot to assassinate the Saudi diplomat on the streets of Washington D.C., then it must invoke the Protection of Diplomats Convention (PDC) and demand arbitration of this claim with Iran,” a distinguished American authority on international law says. The diplomat Iran is accused of plotting to kill is the Saudi ambassador to the U.S.

“In the event Iran were to reject such arbitration, then the Obama administration could sue Iran at the International Court of Justice in The Hague, the so-called World Court of the United Nations System,” says Professor Francis Boyle of the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Boyle recalled that during the Iranian Hostages Crisis, “the International Court of Justice rendered an overwhelming victory on behalf of the United States against Iran that played an important role in the successful resolution of that crisis. So the World Court is an eminently fair institution to resolve this latest international dispute between Iran and the United States.”

On the other hand, Boyle continued, “If the Obama administration’s real motivation is to concoct and manufacture a pretext for a crisis resulting in provocations and hostilities, it will continue to argue its so-called case to the Western news media which is inherently biased against Iran, instead of resorting to this regularly established and already proven to be effective international judicial dispute settlement procedure.” The PDC was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1973.

Boyle has been involved in major international cases challenging U.S. defense policy on nuclear and biological warfare activities and against its preemptive wars. He is the author of numerous books on these issues, including, “Tackling America’s Toughest Questions,” (Clarity Press), and he was responsible for drafting the Biological Weapons Convention.

The headlines about the alleged conspiracy have successfully sensationalized U.S. charges. There was no comparable publicity in U.S. media when Iranian nuclear scientists have been actually assassinated.

Over the past several years three Iranian scientists involved in that country’s nuclear effort have been murdered, the most recent this past July. (An attempt on the life of a fourth scientist was foiled.) The Times said the killings are widely believed to have been the work of Israeli agents and were conducted “with tolerance from the United States.”

Also, as the Times reported: “Both countries (Israel and America) are believed to have worked in recent years to sabotage Iran’s program to enrich uranium, smuggling damaged components into Iran’s supply chain and destroying centrifuges by planting the so-called Stuxnet computer worm.”

The goal behind those actions appears to be to continue Israel as the dominant nuclear power in the region. Israel, which declines to cooperate with the International Atomic Energy Agency, is believed to possess some 200 nuclear warheads. It has not signed the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty of 1996 and refuses to allow international inspection of its facilities. Iran, by contrast, has no nuclear weapons and the former head of the IAEA said recently there is no evidence that Iran is attempting to build one.

Gary Sick, an Iran expert at Columbia University told The New York Times October 15th, “The Iranians absolutely believe the U.S. and Israel have been carrying out a covert campaign against them and clearly they are right.”

Resorting to assassination, though, would be the worst possible response for Iran. Given past official Iranian statements disavowing retaliation for the murders of the three scientists, the new charges brought by the U.S. about the Saudi ambassador plot must be viewed with some skepticism. According to the Associated Press, an Iranian official has said Iran would not retaliate for the “ugly phenomenon” of the killing of their scientists. By refraining from any revenge killing for its scientists, Iran has sought to place itself on the high ground in the dispute.

Sherwood Ross is a Miami-based public relations consultant for good causes and director of the Anti-War News Service. He formerly reported for major dailies and worked as a columnist for several wire services. Reach him at [email protected]

Este importante texto foi escrito a pensar no público norte-americano, mas deve ter uma divulgação muito mais alargada. Para que os povos – e o do EUA também – se levantem e gritem “Parem!”, tem que haver primeiro “um melhor entendimento das alianças negras subjacentes às alegadas intervenções humanitárias dos americanos. Esta consciência pode aumentar quando os americanos finalmente perceberem que há consequências internas do apoio a terroristas. A camuflagem do conluio continuará, até o público dar por ela. E enquanto continuar, continuaremos a ver-nos negada a verdade sobre que conluios estão por detrás do 11/9. Pior ainda, é possível que vejamos mais ataques terroristas tanto no país como no estrangeiro, juntamente com mais guerras, ilegais, dispendiosas e desnecessárias.” 

Duas vezes nas últimas duas décadas foram previstos significativos cortes nas despesas militares americanas e ocidentais: primeiro, após a queda do muro de Berlim, e depois no seguimento da crise financeira de 2008. Contudo, de ambas as vezes as despesas militares depressa aumentaram e, entre os factores que contribuíram para o aumento, estiveram intervenções americanas em novas áreas: os Balcãs nos anos 90 e a Líbia actualmente.1 Em ambos os casos, foi escondida do público até que ponto a al-Qaeda foi um aliada secreta dos americanos nas duas intervenções e não sua inimiga.

As intervenções americanas nos Balcãs e depois na Líbia foram apresentadas como humanitárias pelos complacentes media dominantes americanos e dos aliados. De facto, alguns intervencionistas talvez tenham sinceramente acreditado nisso. Contudo, houve motivações mais profundas e decisivas em ambos os casos, desde o petróleo até às prioridades geoestratégicas.

Virtualmente em todas as guerras desde 1989, os lados americano e islamita se têm batido para resolver quem controla os territórios da Eurásia na era pós-soviética. Nalguns países (Somália em 1993 e Afeganistão em 2001) o conflito foi directo, cada um dos lados usando os excessos do outro como pretexto para a intervenção.

Contudo, outras intervenções houve em que os americanos utilizaram a al-Qaeda como recurso para aumentarem a sua influência, como por exemplo no Azerbaijão em 1993. O presidente pró-Moscovo foi deposto depois de grande número de árabes e outros veteranos estrangeiros mujahedin terem sido secretamente importados do Afeganistão através de via aérea rapidamente organizada por três antigos veteranos da Air America, uma companhia aérea da CIA. (Os três, todos eles tendo sido anteriormente destacados do Pentágono para a CIA, são Richard Secord, Harry Aderholt e Ed Dearborn.)2 Tratou-se de um casamento de conveniência ad hoc: os mujahedin foram defender os muçulmanos contra a influência russa no enclave de Nagorno-Karabakh, enquanto os americanos conseguiram um presidente novo que abriu os campos de petróleo de Baku às empresas petrolíferas ocidentais.

O padrão da colaboração dos EUA com fundamentalistas muçulmanos contra inimigos mais seculares não é novo. Data de pelo menos 1953, quando a CIA recrutou mullahs de direita para depor o primeiro-ministro Mossadeq no Irão e começaram também a cooperar com a Irmandade Muçulmana Sunita.3 Porém, na Líbia em 2011, vemos um casamento de conveniência mais complexo entre os EUA e elementos da al-Qaeda: trata-se da repetição de um padrão visto na Bósnia em 1992-95 e no Kosovo em 1997-98. Nesses países, a América respondeu a um conflito local em nome de uma intervenção humanitária, para dominar o lado que cometia as atrocidades. Contudo, em todos os três casos, ambos os lados cometeram atrocidades e a intervenção americana favoreceu de facto o lado aliado da al-Qaeda.

A causa da intervenção foi promovida em todos os três casos através de aberta manipulação e falsificação dos factos. O que um historiador notou no conflito da Bósnia passou-se igualmente na Líbia: embora os ataques fossem “perpetrados tanto por sérvios, como por muçulmanos,” o padrão nos media ocidentais era que “as mortes de muçulmanos eram noticiadas, ao passo que as de não-muçulmanos não eram.”4 As notícias de violações em massa da ordem dos milhares mostraram-se loucamente exageradas: um jornalista francês descobriu apenas quatro mulheres com vontade de confirmar a história.”5 Entretanto, em 1994, o intelectual francês Bernard-Henri Lévy (BHL) viajou para a Bósnia e apoiou veementemente a tese da intervenção na Bósnia. Em Fevereiro de 2011, BHL viajou para Benghazi e retomou o seu papel de intervencionista na Líbia.6

Em todos os países mencionados acima, além disso, há sinais de que alguns grupos de espionagem americanos e/ou ocidentais colaboraram com elementos da al-Qaeda desde o início do conflito, antes das atrocidades invocadas como motivo para a intervenção. Isto sugere que havia razões mais profundas para as intervenções americanas, incluído o desejo das empresas petrolíferas ocidentais explorarem as reservas de petróleo da Líbia (tal como no Iraque) sem terem que negociar com um homem forte irrequieto e poderoso, ou o seu desejo de criarem um oleoduto estratégico através dos Balcãs (no Kosovo).7

Que os EUA apoiem a al-Qaeda em atrocidades terroristas vai totalmente contra a imagem criada pelos media dos EUA. No entanto, esta aliança herética em curso ressuscita e baseia-se na aliança que esteve na base da estratégia de provocação de Zbigniew Brzezinski em 1978-79 no Afeganistão, numa altura em que era conselheiro da Segurança Nacional do presidente Carter.

Nesses anos, Brzezinski não hesitou em jogar a cartada terrorista contra a União Soviética: reforçou os esforços do SAVAK (serviço de espionagem do Xá do Irão) para trabalhar com os antecessores islamitas da al-Qaeda para desestabilizar o Afeganistão, de uma forma que em breve conduziu à invasão soviética desse país.8 Na altura, conforme mais tarde se gabou, Brzezinski disse a Carter, “Temos agora a oportunidade de oferecer à URSS a sua guerra do Vietname.”9

O director da CIA William Casey prosseguiu esta estratégia de utilizar terroristas contra a URSS no Afeganistão. De início, a CIA canalizou ajuda através do ISI paquistanês (serviço de espionagem inter-serviços) para os clientes extremistas afegãos como Gulbeddin Hekmatyar (hoje, um dos inimigos dos americanos no Afeganistão). Porém, em 1986 “Casey deu o apoio da CIA a uma iniciativa de longo prazo do ISI de recrutamento de muçulmanos radicais em todo o mundo para virem para o Paquistão lutar com os mujaheddin afegãos.”10 A ajuda da CIA era dirigida ao escritório dos serviços de apoio em Peshawar, chefiado pelo palestiniano Abdullah Azzam e por Osama bin Laden. O Centro al-Kifah, escritório de recrutamento americano para a chamada legião estrangeira árabe-afegã (futura al-Qaeda) estava instalado na mesquita al-Farook em Brooklyn.11

É importante lembrar hoje a utilização de terroristas por Brzezinski e Casey. Porque na Líbia, como anteriormente no Kosovo e na Bósnia, existem sinais alarmantes de que os americanos continuaram a comprometer-se com terroristas islâmicos como meio para desmantelar nações socialistas ou quase-socialistas fora da sua órbita: primeiro a URSS, depois a Jugoslávia, hoje a Líbia. Conforme escrevi algures, Kadhafi estava a usar a riqueza da Líbia, único país mediterrânico ainda armado pela Rússia e independente da órbita da NATO, para impor condições cada vez mais difíceis às empresas petrolíferas ocidentais e para tornar o conjunto da África mais independente da Europa e da América.12

O apoio aos mujahedin incluiu conluio com a ilegalidade, a um elevado preço. Na segunda parte deste ensaio, mostro como a protecção governamental a figuras-chave no Centro Kifah de Brooklyn os deixou livres, mesmo depois de conhecidos como tendo cometido crimes, para se lançarem em mais actos terroristas nos Estados Unidos, tais como as primeiras bombas no World Trade Center em 1993.

A aliança EUA/al-Qaeda na Líbia

A intervenção da NATO na Líbia foi apresentada como uma campanha humanitária. Mas, não foi: ambas as facções têm cometido atrocidades. Graças em parte aos esforços da bem relacionada firma Harbour Group, a trabalhar por conta do Conselho Nacional de Transição [CNT] da oposição de Benghazi, os americanos ouviram muito mais relatos de imprensa de atrocidades pelas forças pró-Kadhafi na Líbia do que pela oposição de Benghazi.13 De facto, conforme o Daily Telegraph de Londres publicou:
Sob controlo rebelde, os residentes de Benghazi estão aterrorizados, muitos “demasiado assustados para conduzirem à noite nas ruas escuras, receando incómodos ou pior nos postos de controlo que proliferam.”

Além disso, cerca de 1,5 milhões de trabalhadores imigrantes negros africanos sentem-se encurralados sob suspeita de apoiarem o lado errado. Grande quantidade deles tem sido atacada, alguns encurralados, arrastados dos apartamentos, espancados e mortos. Os chamados “revolucionários” e “combatentes da liberdade” são de facto desordeiros armados que cometem atrocidades, mas são mitificados pelos noticiários dominantes que evitam revelar o que será a nova Líbia se Kadhafi for deposto.14

Thomas Mountain concorda que “Desde que a rebelião rebentou em Benghazi, várias centenas de trabalhadores imigrados sudaneses, somalis, etíopes e eritreus foram assaltados e assassinados por milícias rebeldes racistas, um facto bem escondido pelos media internacionais”.15 Relatos desses continuaram. Recentemente, a Human Rights Watch acusou os rebeldes de matarem apoiantes de Kadhafi simplesmente civis e de pilharem, queimarem e esquadrinharem as casas e as áreas de apoiantes pró-Kadhafi.16

É ainda menos provável que os americanos e os europeus saibam pelos media que, entre os grupos na coligação de transição de Benghazi, certamente os mais batidos são veteranos da Al-Jama’a al-Islamiyyah al-Muqatilah bi-Libya (Grupo Islâmico de Combatentes Líbios, ou GICL). A importância do contingente do GICL no CNT foi desprezada num recente número do International Business Times:
O GICL é um grupo radical islâmico que tem feito guerra de guerrilha de pequena escala contra Kadhafi desde há quase uma década. A maior parte das chefias do GICL são soldados que combateram contra as forças soviéticas no Afeganistão fazendo parte dos mujahedin. Desde o início da revolta, as informações eram que alguns GICL se tinham juntado ao movimento rebelde CNT no terreno e muitos acusaram os combatentes de terem ligações à al-Qaeda, o que o GICL desde então tem negado.

Antes, contudo, o GICL tinha afirmado que o seu objectivo último é instalar um estado islâmico na Líbia, o que, dado o facto de muitos dos seus elementos estarem agora do lado do CNT, é bastante preocupante. No entanto, sendo o GICL dado como tendo uma força de combate de não mais que alguns milhares de homens, acredita-se que não será capaz de causar demasiada perturbação dentro da oposição.17
Resta ver se um CNT vitorioso será capaz de conter as aspirações islâmicas dos implacáveis veteranos jihadistas nas suas fileiras.

Há aqueles que receiam que, dados os anos de combate no Afeganistão e no Iraque, o endurecido GICL, embora provavelmente não dominante hoje na coligação de Benghazi, virá a beneficiar de maior influência se acaso Benghazi vier a distribuir os despojos da vitória. Em Fevereiro de 2004, o então director da CIA George Tenet testemunhou perante a comissão de Informação do Senado que “uma das mais imediatas ameaças [à segurança dos EUA no Iraque] vem dos pequenos grupos extremistas internacionais sunitas que têm beneficiado de ligações à al-Qaeda. Incluem… o Grupo Islâmico de Combatentes Líbios, GICL.”18Em 2007, um estudo de West Point debruçava-se sobre “as ligações de crescente cooperação entre o GICL e a al-Qaeda, que culminaram na adesão oficial do GICL à al-Qaeda a 3 de Novembro de 2007.”19 É possível que o estudo de West Point tenha exagerado a ligação GICL/al-Qaeda. O que interessa é que a Grã-Bretanha e os EUA estavam bem cientes das conclusões de West Point e no entanto as suas forças especiais apoiaram secretamente a CNT de Benghazi, mesmo antes de o desencadear do apoio aéreo da NATO.

O bombardeamento do país começou ao mesmo tempo que era revelado que centenas de tropas britânicas das forças especiais tinham sido colocadas no interior da Líbia tendo como objectivo as forças do coronel Kadhafi, havendo mais de reserva…
No total, entende-se que pouco menos de 250 forças especiais britânicas e apoios estavam na Líbia desde antes do lançamento dos ataques aéreos, para aplicar a zona de exclusão aérea contra as forças de Kadhafi.20

Há também informação de que forças especiais americanas foram igualmente enviadas para a Líbia em 23 e 24 de Fevereiro, quase um mês antes do início do bombardeamento da NATO.21

O apoio britânico ao GICL fundamentalista tinha de facto pelo menos uma década de existência:
Em Setembro de 1995, desencadearam-se em Benghazi duros combates entre as forças de segurança [de Kadhafi] e as guerrilhas islâmicas, deixando dezenas de mortos de ambos os lados. Depois de semanas de intensa luta, o GICL declarou formalmente a sua existência num comunicado em que chamava ao governo de Kadhafi “um regime apóstata que blasfemou contra a fé no Todo-poderoso”, declarando o seu derrube como “o mais importante dever depois da fé em Deus.” Este e futuros comunicados do GICL foram emitidos por afegãos líbios a quem tinha sido garantido asilo político na Grã-Bretanha… O envolvimento do governo britânico na campanha do GICL contra Kadhafi continua a ser assunto de grande controvérsia. A grande operação seguinte do GICL, a tentativa falhada de assassinato de Kadhafi em Fevereiro de 1996 que vitimou vários dos seus guarda-costas, disse-se foi mais tarde ter sido financiada pela espionagem britânica com $160,000, de acordo com o ex-agente do MI5 David Shayler.22

O depoimento de David Shayler foi rebatido, mas muitas outras fontes mostram que o apoio do Reino Unido aos jihadistas líbios antecede de muito o actual conflito.23

Ainda mais ameaçadores para o futuro do que o nacionalista GICL, podem ser os combatentes da mais internacionalista al-Qaeda no Magrebe (AQIM) que aproveitaram a oportunidade oferecida pela guerra para entrarem no conflito e se equiparem com o armamento roubado dos arsenais de Kadhafi.24 A AQIM é especialmente preocupante dadas as recentes informações de, tal como organizações análogas do Afeganistão e do Kosovo, estar a ser crescentemente financiada pelos lucros do tráfico de droga regional.25

Em resumo, a campanha da NATO na Líbia é em apoio de uma coligação na qual a futura situação de actuais e anteriores aliados da al-Qaeda vai provavelmente sair reforçada.26 E as forças ocidentais têm secretamente vindo a apoiá-las desde o início.

A aliança EUA/al-Qaeda na Bósnia

De modo análogo, as intervenções de Clinton na Bósnia e no Kosovo foram apresentadas como humanitárias. Porém, ambos os lados tinham cometido atrocidades nesses conflitos. Do mesmo modo que os media ocidentais, Washington desvalorizou as atrocidades cometidas por muçulmanos por interesse.

A maior parte dos americanos julga que Clinton enviou forças americanas para a Bósnia para fazer aplicar os acordos de paz de Dayton no seguimento de uma bem propagandeada atrocidade sérvia: o massacre de milhares de muçulmanos em Srebrenica. Graças a uma vigorosa campanha pela firma de relações públicas Ruder Finn, os americanos fartaram-se de ouvir coisas sobre o massacre de Srebrenica, mas bastante menos sobre as decapitações e outras atrocidades praticadas por muçulmanos que antecederam e ajudam a compreender esse massacre.

Um razão importante para o ataque sérvio a Srebrenica foi acabar com os ataques armados preparados a partir dessa base sobre as aldeias vizinhas: “fontes de informação indicaram que foi esse o tormento que precipitou o ataque sérvio aos 1500 sitiados muçulmanos no interior do enclave.”27 O general Philippe Morillon, comandante das tropas da ONU na Bósnia de 1992 a 1993, testemunhou ao TICJ (Tribunal Internacional Criminal para a antiga Jugoslávia) que as forças muçulmanas baseadas em Srebrenica tinham “desencadeado ataques durante as festas ortodoxas e destruído aldeias, massacrando todos os habitantes. Isto criou um nível de ódio na região absolutamente extraordinário.”28

De acordo com o Prof. John Schindler, entre Maio e Dezembro de 1992, as forças muçulmanas atacaram repetidamente aldeias sérvias à volta de Srebrenica, matando e torturando civis, sendo alguns mutilados e queimados vivos. Até relatos pró-Sarajevo concedem que as forças muçulmanas em Srebrenica assassinaram mais de 1.300 sérvios e tinham “limpo etnicamente uma vasta área.”29

O antigo embaixador americano na Croácia Peter Galbraith admitiu mais tarde numa entrevista que o governo americano estava ciente de que “pequeno número de atrocidades” tinham sido cometidas por mujahedin estrangeiros na Bósnia, mas desvalorizou as atrocidades como “estando na ordem natural das coisas e sem grande importância.”30

Outras fontes revelam que Washington deu luz verde tácita ao armamento da Croácia e ao aumento da presença muçulmana em Srebrenica.31 Em breve, aviões Hercules C-130, alguns mas não todos iranianos, lançavam armas para os muçulmanos, violando o embargo internacional de armas que os EUA oficialmente respeitavam. Do mesmo modo, chegaram mais mujahedin árabe-afegãos. Muitas das descargas aéreas e parte dos mujahedin estavam em Tuzla, a 70 km de Srebrenica.32

De acordo com The Spectator (Londres), o Pentágono usava outros países, como a Turquia e o Irão neste movimento de armas e combatentes:
De 1992 a 1995, o Pentágono apoiou a movimentação de milhares de mujahidin e outros elementos islâmicos da Ásia Central para a Europa, para combaterem ao lado dos muçulmanos bósnios contra os sérvios. Como parte do inquérito do governo holandês ao massacre de Srebrenica de Julho de 1995, o Professor Cees Wiebes da Universidade de Amesterdão compilou um relatório intitulado “A Espionagem e a Guerra na Bósnia”, publicado em Abril de 2002. Nesse relatório, é detalhada a aliança secreta entre o Pentágono e grupos islâmicos radicais do Médio Oriente e o esforço de apoio aos muçulmanos da Bósnia. Em 1993, houve grande quantidade de contrabando de armas através da Croácia para os muçulmanos, organizado por “agências clandestinas” dos EUA, da Turquia e do Irão, em associação com uma série de grupos islâmicos que incluía os mujahidin afegãos e o Hezbollah pró-iraniano. As armas compradas pelo Irão e pela Turquia com apoio financeiro da Arábia saudita eram aerotransportadas do Médio Oriente para a Bósnia – transportes aéreos com os quais, segundo Wiebes, os EUA estavam “muito intimamente envolvidos”.33

O detalhado relatório de Cees Wiebes, baseado em anos de pesquisa, documenta tanto o caso da responsabilidade americana, como o seu vigoroso desmentido:
Às 17.45 de 10 de Fevereiro de1995, o capitão norueguês Ivan Moldestad, piloto de um destacamento de helicópteros norueguês (NorAir), estava à porta do seu alojamento temporário nas imediações de Tuzla. Estava escuro e de repente ouviu o ruído de hélices de um aparelho de transporte aéreo aproximando-se, indiscutivelmente um quadrimotor Hercules C-130. Molestad notou que o Hercules era escoltado por dois caças a jacto, embora não conseguisse ver exactamente de que tipo no meio da escuridão. Houve outros avistamentos deste voo secreto nocturno para a base aérea de Tuzla. Uma sentinela de guarda fora da unidade médica norueguesa da ONU em Tuzla também ouviu e viu as luzes do Hercules e os caças a jacto da escolta. Outros observadores da ONU utilizando equipamento de observação nocturna também viram o avião de carga e os respectivos caças. Foram imediatamente enviados relatórios ao Centro de Operações Aéreas Combinadas (COAC) da NATO em Vincenza e à UNPF em Nápoles. Quando Moldestad telefonou para Vincenza, disseram-lhe que não tinha havido nada no ar nessa noite e que devia estar enganado. Ao insistir, a ligação foi interrompida.

Os voos secretos dos aviões de carga C-130 e os lançamentos nocturnos de armas sobre Tuzla provocaram grande agitação dentro da UNPROFOR e na comunidade internacional em Fevereiro e Março de1995. Quando interpelado, um general britânico respondeu com grande segurança sobre a origem dos fornecimentos secretos através da base aérea de Tuzla: “Foram fornecimentos de armas americanos. Não há dúvida a esse respeito. E estiveram envolvidas nesses fornecimentos companhias privadas americanas.” Não foi nenhuma resposta surpreendente, porque este general tinha acesso a informações recolhidas por uma unidade dos Serviços Aéreos Especiais (SAE) britânicos em Tuzla. Os aparelhos tinham ficado dentro do alcance do equipamento especial de visão nocturna desta unidade e os britânicos viram-nos aterrar. Era uma confirmação de que tinha tido lugar uma operação clandestina americana, na qual armas, munições e equipamento de comunicações militares foram fornecidos ao exército da Bósnia- Herzegóvina. Estas operações nocturnas provocaram bastante consternação na ONU e na NATO e foram objecto de inúmeras especulações.34

Wiebes indica a possibilidade dos C-130, alguns dos quais se disse terem descolado de uma base aérea americana na Alemanha, serem controlados por autoridades turcas.35 Mas o envolvimento americano foi detectado no meio do elaborado escamoteamento pelo facto dos aparelhos americanos AWACS, que deviam ter fornecido registo dos voos secretos, ou terem sido retirados de serviço na altura conveniente ou sido conduzidos por tripulações americanas.36

O Guardian publicou um resumo do exaustivo relatório de Wiebes:
O relatório holandês mostra como o Pentágono criou uma aliança secreta com grupos islâmicos numa operação do estilo Irão-contra.
Os grupos de espionagem americano, turco e iraniano trabalharam com os islâmicos naquilo que o relatório holandês designa a “via croata”. As armas compradas pelo Irão e pela Turquia e financiadas pela Arábia Saudita eram enviadas através da Croácia inicialmente pela linha aérea oficial iraniana Iran Air e mais tarde numa frota de aviões Hercules C-130 negros.

O relatório refere que os combatentes mujahedin eram igualmente enviados e que os EUA estavam “muito intimamente envolvidos” na operação que se desenrolava em flagrante violação do embargo. Refere também que os serviços secretos britânicos obtiveram documentos provando que o Irão preparou igualmente fornecimentos de armas directamente para a Bósnia.

A operação foi promovida pelo Pentágono, em vez da CIA, que era cautelosa quanto à utilização de grupos islâmicos para canalizar armas e quanto à violação do embargo. Quando a CIA tentou colocar o seu pessoal no terreno na Bósnia, os agentes foram ameaçados pelos combatentes mujahedin e pelos iranianos que os treinavam.

A ONU confiava na espionagem americana para o controle do embargo, dependência esta que permitiu a Washington manipulá-la à vontade.37

Entretanto, o Centro al-Kifah em Brooklyn, que nos anos 80 tinha apoiado os “árabes-afegãos” combatendo no Afeganistão, virou a sua atenção para a Bósnia.

A folha de imprensa em língua inglesa do al-Kifah de nome Al-Hussam (A Espada) começou também a publicar actualizações regulares sobre a acção jihadista na Bósnia. Sob controlo dos apaniguados do xeque Omar Abdel Rahman, a folha incitava agressivamente os simpatizantes muçulmanos a aderirem eles próprios à jihad na Bósnia e no Afeganistão…. As instalações do ramo al-Kifah bósnio em Zagreb na Croácia, instalado num moderno edifício de dois andares estavam evidentemente em comunicação próxima com a sede da organização em New York. O director da delegação de Zagreb, Hassan Hakim, admitiu receber todas as ordens e fundos directamente dos escritórios centrais da al-Kifah nos EUA na Atlantic Avenue, controlada pelo xeque Omar Abdel Rahman.38

Um dos monitores na al-Kifah, Rodney Hampton-El, dava assistência a este programa de apoio, recrutando combatentes das bases do exército dos EUA como Fort Belvoir, treinando-os também em New Jersey para a guerra.39 Em 1995, Hampton-El foi julgado e condenado pelo seu papel (juntamente com o chefe da al-Kifah, o xeque Omar Abdel Rahman) na conspiração para fazer explodir símbolos nova-iorquinos. No tribunal, Hampton-El testemunhou ter pessoalmente recebido milhares de dólares para este projecto do príncipe da coroa saudita Faisal na embaixada saudita em Washington.40

Por esta altura, o actual chefe da al-Qaeda Ayman al-Zawahiri veio aos EUA para recolher fundos em Silicon Valley, onde foi recebido por Ali Mohamed, agente duplo americano e veterano das forças especiais do exército americano que tinha sido o instrutor principal na mesquita de al-Kifah.41 Quase de certeza, a recolha de fundos era para apoio aos mujahedin na Bósnia, segundo constava principal preocupação do seu chefe na altura (“A edição asiática do Wall Street Journal noticiava que em 1993 o sr. Bin Laden tinha nomeado o xeque Ayman Al-Zawahiri segundo comandante da al-Qaeda para dirigir as operações nos Balcãs.”) 42

O pormenorizado relatório de Wiebes e as histórias veiculadas nas notícias nele baseadas corroboraram anteriores acusações feitas em 1997 por Sir Alfred Sherman, conselheiro de topo de Margaret Thatcher e co-fundador do influente Centro de Estudos Políticos nacionalista de direita, de que “os EUA encorajaram e facilitaram o envio de armas para os muçulmanos via Irão e Europa de leste – facto que foi negado na altura em Washington, face a uma esmagadora evidência.”43

Era parte deste caso que a guerra na Bósnia era uma guerra americana em todos os sentidos da palavra. O governo dos EUA ajudou a iniciá-la, manteve-a e evitou o seu fim prematuro. De facto, todos os indícios são de que pretende prosseguir a guerra no futuro próximo, tão breve quanto os seus protegidos muçulmanos estiverem armados e treinados.

Especificamente, Sherman acusou o secretário de estado Lawrence Eagleburger de ter instruído em 1992 o embaixador americano em Belgrado, Warren Zimmerman, para persuadir o presidente bósnio Izetbegovic a renegar o acordo de preservação da unidade bósnia-croata-sérvia, aceitando em vez disso a ajuda americana para um estado bósnio independente.44

A aliança EUA/al-Qaeda no Kosovo

Isto levanta a perturbante questão de saber se alguns americanos pretenderiam ignorar as atrocidades dos mujahedin da al-Kifah na Bósnia em troca da sua contribuição nas sucessivas guerras da NATO para desmantelar a Jugoslávia, última república socialista sobrevivente na Europa. Uma coisa é clara: a previsão de Sir Alfred Sherman em 1997 de que os EUA “pretendem continuar a guerra no futuro próximo” rapidamente se mostrou acertada, quando em 1999 o apoio americano aos aliados da al-Qaeda no Kosovo, o Exército de Libertação do Kosovo (ELK), levou à controversa campanha de bombardeamentos da NATO.

Conforme largamente noticiado na altura, o ELK era apoiado por ambas as redes de bin Laden e de al-Zawahiri e também pelo tráfico de heroína no Afeganistão:
Alguns membros do Exército de Libertação do Kosovo, que financiou o seu esforço de guerra através da venda de heroína, foram treinados em campos terroristas dirigidos pelo fugitivo internacional Osama bin Laden, procurado pelo bombardeamento de duas embaixadas americanas em África que mataram 224 pessoas em 1998, incluindo 12 americanos.45

De acordo com o antigo agente da DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration, organismo policial de fiscalização legal das drogas dependente do Dep. Justiça dos EUA – N.T.) Michael Levine, a decisão de Clinton de apoiar o ELK desconcertou os contactos da DEA que sabiam tratar-se de uma grande organização de tráfico de droga.46

Conforme Ralf Mutschke da Interpol testemunhou no Congresso, em 1998, o Departamento de Estado dos EUA listou o ELK como organização terrorista, indicando que financiava as suas operações com dinheiro do comércio internacional de heroína e com empréstimos de países e entidades islâmicos, entre os quais alegadamente Usama bin Laden. Outra ligação a bin Laden era o facto de o irmão de um dos chefes da organização Jihad Egípcia, também comandante militar de Usama bin Laden, estar a dirigir uma unidade de elite do ELK durante o conflito do Kosovo. [Trata-se quase certamente de Zaiman ou Mohammed al-Zawahiri, um dos irmãos de Ayman al-Zawahiri.] Em 1998, o ELK era descrito como peça-chave no negócio das armas por droga, “contribuindo para a passagem de droga para a Europa ocidental no valor de 2 mil milhões de dólares anualmente”. O ELK e outros grupos albaneses parecem usar uma sofisticada rede de contas e empresas para processar os fundos. Em 1998, a Alemanha congelou duas contas bancárias pertencentes à organização “Kosova Unida”, depois de ter sido descoberto que tinham sido depositadas várias centenas de milhares de dólares nessas contas por um traficante de droga kosovar com cadastro. 47

De acordo com o Sunday Times, de Londres, o passado do ELK não demoveu os EUA de o treinar e fortalecer:
Agentes secretos americanos admitiram que ajudaram a treinar o ELK antes do bombardeamento da Jugoslávia pela NATO. A revelação enfureceu alguns diplomatas europeus, que disseram tal ter sabotado tentativas para uma solução política do conflito entre sérvios e albaneses. Havia agentes da CIA que eram monitores do cessar-fogo no Kosovo em 1998 e 1999 e desenvolviam ligações com o ELK, fornecendo manuais de instrução militar americanos e orientação no terreno sobre a luta contra o exército jugoslavo e a polícia sérvia.

Quando a Organização para a Segurança e Cooperação Europeia (OSCE), que coordenava a monitorização, deixou o Kosovo uma semana antes dos ataques aéreos começarem, muitos dos seus telefones por satélite e GPS foram secretamente passados ao ELK, garantindo assim que os comandantes da guerrilha pudessem continuar em contacto com a NATO e Washington. Vários chefes do ELK tinham o nº do telemóvel do general Wesley Clarke, comandante da NATO.48

De acordo com o antigo coronel do exército americano David Hackworth, mais tarde colaborador do editor para a defesa da Newsweek, antigos oficiais americanos do empreiteiro militar privado MPRI (Military Professional Resources Incorporated) não só treinaram pessoal do ELK, como também combateram ao lado deles.49 Isto reforçou anteriores informações de que o pessoal da MPRI estaria também envolvido no treino de croatas na altura da passagem ilícita de armas croata para a Bósnia.50

Depois do Kosovo, Sherman repetiu os avisos contra a “expansão da hegemonia americana”exercida através da NATO, com graus variáveis de parceria e de subordinação de outros protagonistas. …O processo iniciou-se com o planeado desmembramento da Jugoslávia, conduzido pela Alemanha e aceite pelos outros membros da União Europeia e pelos EUA (1991). Prosseguiu com sanções contra a Sérvia pela tentativas de auxílio aos sérvios ocidentais (1992). Na Bósnia, o primeiro envolvimento americano desencadeou a guerra civil (a visita de Zimmerman a Izetbegovic, no seguimento do acordo de Lisboa) e mais tarde resultou na campanha de bombardeamentos de 1999 e na ocupação do Kosovo.51

Houve quem suspeitasse que o envolvimento americano era motivado pela vontade de ter um novo oleoduto transbalcânico e uma nova base militar americana para o defender nos Balcãs. Embora essas críticas tenham sido inicialmente ridicularizadas, ambas as previsões depressa se tornaram verdade. A empresa AMBO registada nos EUA e dirigida pelo antigo executivo da BP Ted Ferguson iniciou a construção de um oleoduto da Albânia para a Macedónia em 2007.52 Próximo, está a base americana semi-permanente de Camp Bonsteel, que pode albergar até 7000 soldados.

Em 2007, o presidente George W. Bush criou um novo United States Africa Command, U.S. AFRICOM, mas o quartel-general está em Estugarda, na Alemanha. Isto levou à especulação na Internet de que os EUA têm olho no aeroporto internacional da Líbia, que a aviação americana tinha utilizado como Base da Força Aérea Wheelus até à sua expulsão em 1970.

Do primeiro atentado no World Trade Center até ao 11/9: o declínio interno dos EUA a partir do conluio com terroristas

O facto de os americanos terem tido repetido recurso a islamitas da al-Qaeda como instrumento dos seus projectos de expansão não constitui prova de que exista uma estratégia sistemática de longo prazo para o fazer e ainda menos de que exista uma aliança secreta.

Acredito antes que a América está a sofrer de uma condição maligna de poder militar desgovernado, poder este que, tal como um câncer maligno, tende a reproduzir-se a si próprio em tempos e de modos contraproducentes para mais largos objectivos. Aqueles que são nomeados para gerir este vasto poder viciam-se na utilização de qualquer instrumento disponível para sustentar uma sociodinâmica de intervenção global, a qual ironicamente são depois impotentes para contrariar ou contornar. Os poucos dissidentes que tentam fazê-lo são previsivelmente postos de lado ou mesmo retirados dos postos de poder como estranhos “à equipa”.

Aqueles em Washington que decidiram apoiar terroristas e traficantes de droga parece não terem considerado “externalidades” como as consequências domésticas de se negociar oficialmente com redes criminosas terroristas que têm um alcance global. Contudo, as consequências foram e são reais, visto que os terroristas islâmicos que foram protegidos pelos EUA na subversão da ordem no Kosovo e noutros países estavam em breve a ser protegidos igualmente dentro dos EUA. Conforme o antigo agente Michael Levine da DEA relatou sobre as redes de droga ligadas ao ELK, “Esses tipos têm uma rede que está activa nas ruas deste país… São os piores elementos da sociedade que se possa imaginar e agora, de acordo com as minhas fontes do combate à droga, encontram-se politicamente protegidos.”53

Por outras palavras, os kosovares estavam agora beneficiando no seu tráfico de droga nos EUA da protecção de facto que antes tinham tido chineses, cubanos, italianos, tailandeses e outros peões da CIA dos anos 40.54 Mother Jones (revista política americana independente – N.T.) noticiou em 2000, depois do bombardeamento da NATO em apoio do ELK, que a heroína afegã, muita dela distribuída por kosovares albaneses, representava actualmente quase 20% da heroína capturada nos EUA, aproximadamente o dobro da percentagem de quatro anos antes.55 Entretanto na Europa calcula-se que “os albaneses do Kosovo controlam 40% da heroína europeia.”56 Além disso, existe um consenso quase universal de que no fim da guerra na Bósnia os jihadistas da al-Qaeda ficaram muito mais fortemente entrincheirados nos Balcãs do que antes. Nas palavras do Professor John Schindler, a Bósnia “a sociedade mais pro-ocidental da umma [mundo muçulmano]” foi “convertida num Jihadistão através do embuste doméstico, do conflito violento e de uma desastrada intervenção internacional.”57

É muito cedo para prever com confiança qual será o resultado interno ou o “coice” a sofrer pelo apoio da NATO a islamitas na criação do caos na Líbia. Contudo, as consequências domésticas de semelhantes intervenções americanas no passado são indiscutíveis e contribuíram para os maiores actos de terrorismo neste país.

A protecção americana da base de apoio mujahedin al-Kifah em Brooklyn levou a uma interferência na aplicação da lei interna dos EUA. Isto permitiu aos recrutados pelos mujahedin na al-Kifah planearem e/ou executarem um certo número de ataques terroristas nacionais ou estrangeiros na América. Estes ataques incluem as primeiras bombas no World Trade Center em 1993, o chamado “plano dos monumentos de Nova Iorque” de 1995 e os ataques a embaixadas em 1998 no Quénia e na Tanzânia. Em todos estes acontecimentos estiveram terroristas que deviam ter sido neutralizados antes, por crimes já cometidos, mas que foram deixados andar em liberdade.
No centro de todos estes ataques esteve o papel de Ali Mohamed. Apesar de constar da lista de vigilância do Departamento de Estado, veio para os EUA cerca de 1984 a coberto do que um consultor do FBI chamou “um programa de vistos controlado pela CIA.”58 O mesmo fez o xeque cego Omar Abdel Rahman, chefe da al-Kifah. Rahman obteve dois vistos, um deles de “um agente da CIA trabalhando secretamente na secção consular da embaixada americana no Sudão.”59

Ali Mohamed treinou os recrutas da al-Kifah na táctica de guerrilha próximo de Brooklyn. Esta operação foi considerada tão sensível que a polícia de Nova Iorque e o FBI evitaram mais tarde dois dos recrutas de serem presos, quando assassinaram o extremista judeu Meir Kahane. Em vez disso, a polícia de Nova Iorque designou o terceiro assassino (El Sayyid Nosair) como “pistoleiro solitário louco” e libertou os outros dois (Mahmoud Abouhalima and Mohammed Salameh). Isto permitiu a Abouhalima e Salameh, juntamente com outro instruendo de Ali Mohamed (Nidal Ayyad) tomarem parte três anos mais tarde no primeiro atentado contra o World Trade Center (1993).60

Os procuradores públicos protegeram de novo Ali Mohamed no julgamento dos “monumentos” em 1994-5, quando Omar Abdul Rahman e alguns dos elementos treinados por Mohamed foram acusados de conspiração para dinamitarem edifícios de Nova Iorque. Neste caso, o procurador Patrick Fitzgerald designou Ali Mohamed co-conspirador não-acusado e no entanto deixou-o ficar em liberdade. Quando a defesa requereu que Mohamed comparecesse no tribunal, o procurador interveio evitando que Mohamed tivesse que testemunhar.61

Ali Mohamed estava bem ciente da sua situação de protegido e utilizou-a em 1993 para obter a liberdade quando detido pela polícia montada canadiana no aeroporto de Vancouver. Uma vez que este episódio foi tão ignorado pela imprensa americana, cito o que sobre ele foi escrito no primeiro jornal do Canadá, o Globe and Mail de Toronto:
A RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police, polícia montada canadiana – N.T.) tinha em mãos um dos elementos-chave da rede terrorista al-Qaeda de Osama bin Laden, mas este foi libertado após ter conseguido ligação da polícia para o seu supervisor no Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) dos EUA.

Ali Mohamed, californiano de origem egípcia que se crê ser o membro de patente mais elevada da al-Qaeda a ter aterrado no Canadá, trabalhava com agentes contraterroristas americanos fazendo jogo duplo ou triplo, quando foi interrogado em 1993. Mohamed está agora numa prisão americana.

“A gente da RCMP disse-me por volta da meia-noite que me podia ir embora” escreveu Mohamed, que confessou nos EUA ser íntimo associado de bin Laden, numa declaração prestada sob juramento e mostrada ao Globe and Mail.
O incidente deu-se quando os funcionários da alfândega no aeroporto internacional de Vancouver detiveram Essam Marzouk, um egípcio que chegava de Damasco via Frankfurt, depois de lhe descobrirem dois passaportes sauditas falsos.

Mohamed, que esperava no aeroporto para o levar, interpelou a polícia sobre a detenção do amigo, o que tornou a RCMP curiosa acerca de si próprio, suspeita esta afastada pela sua declaração de que era um colaborador do FBI.62

A história do Globe and Mail torna claro que já em 1993 Mohamed tinha um contacto no FBI, a quem a RCMP passou o assunto. Patrick Fitzgerald, nas suas declarações à Comissão do 11/9, contou uma história bastante diferente: a de que Mohamed, depois de voltar de Nairobi em 1994, se candidatou a um lugar de “tradutor do FBI.”63 A diferença é vital: como o FBI disse à RCMP para libertar Mohamed, ele conseguiu viajar para Nairobi e planear aí o bombardeamento da embaixada americana.

De acordo com o autor Peter Lance, por volta de 2007 Fitzgerald tinha suficientes provas para prender e acusar Mohamed, mas não o fez. Em vez disso, entrevistou Mohamed na Califórnia, junto com o agente do FBI Jack Cloonan. Depois da entrevista, Fitzgerald optou por não prender Mohamed, mas em vez disso pôr o telefone sob escuta e penetrar no computador. Lance faz uma pergunta muito relevante: será que Fitzgerald receava que ”uma acusação ao principal espião da al-Qaeda poderia desmascarar os anos de grosseira negligência de três das mais importantes agências de espionagem americanas”?64

Um mês após as bombas na embaixada, a 10 de Setembro de 1998, Ali Mohamed foi finalmente preso. Contudo, quando dois meses mais tarde Fitzgerald elaborou treze acusações, o nome de Mohamed não constava de nenhuma. Em vez disso, uma vez mais, Fitzgerald permitiu-lhe escapar ao interrogatório no tribunal aceitando um acordo processual, cujos termos são ainda em parte desconhecidos. Concretamente, não conhecemos os termos das declarações de Mohamed: essa página da transcrição da sua presença em tribunal (p. 17) foi arquivada e selada.65

Como parte do acordo processual, Mohamed disse ao tribunal que, a pedido pessoal de bin Laden, fez vigilância à embaixada americana no Quénia, “tirou fotografias, desenhou diagramas e escreveu um relatório” que foi enviado pessoalmente a bin Laden no Sudão.66 Patrick Fitzgerald, o procurador que negociou o acordo processual, testemunhou sobre Mohamed na Comissão do 11/9, que concluiu no seu relatório (p. 68) ter Mohamed “conduzido” a operação de explosão da embaixada. Ironicamente, a razão oficial pela qual Zawahiri (como bin Laden antes dele) é procurado pelo FBI, com um prémio de $25 milhões de dólares pela sua cabeça, é a sabotagem da embaixada.

No entanto, o público americano não tem tido o direito de saber qual o envolvimento de Ali Mohamed noutros actos terroristas. Particularmente relevante seria o seu envolvimento no 11/9. Conforme o seu contacto no FBI Cloonan mais tarde declarou, Mohamed explicou-lhe ter treinado pessoalmente os autores acusados dos desvios sobre como assaltar aviões:
Tinha realizado treinos para a al Qaeda sobre desvio de aviões. Orientou exercícios práticos no Paquistão e dizia “É assim que se introduz uma lâmina a bordo. Agarra-se numa faca, tira-se a lâmina, enrola-se em [palavra riscada] e põe-se na bagagem de mão.” Eles sabem os regulamentos da FAA. Sabem que quatro polegadas não podem caber. “É assim que se fica em posição”, dizia. “Ensinei pessoas a sentarem-se em primeira classe. Sentas-te aqui e outros sentam-se aqui.” Escreveu tudo isso.67

Conclusão

A América está actualmente no meio de uma crise orçamental sem precedentes, provocada em grande parte pelas múltiplas guerras onde está metida. No entanto, está também a ponto de realizar várias outras futuras intervenções: no Iémen, na Somália, possivelmente na Síria ou no Irão (onde se diz que a CIA está em contacto com a Jundallah, secção de tráfico de droga da al-Qaeda),68 e muito seguramente na Líbia.

Só o público americano os pode parar. Mas, de modo ao público americano se levantar e gritar “Parem!”, tem que haver primeiro um melhor entendimento das alianças negras subjacentes às alegadas intervenções humanitárias dos americanos.

Esta consciência pode aumentar quando os americanos finalmente perceberem que há consequências internas do apoio a terroristas. A prolongada e complicada dança entre Mohamed e os seus supervisores do Departamento de Justiça tornam claro que a manipulação de terroristas para fins corruptos corrompe tanto os terroristas como os manipuladores. Mais tarde, quer manipuladores, quer manipulados se tornam efectivamente co-conspiradores, com segredos acerca do seu conluio que ambas as partes precisam esconder.

A camuflagem do conluio continuará, até o público dar por ela. E enquanto continuar, continuaremos a ver-nos negada a verdade sobre que conluios estão por detrás do 11/9.

Pior ainda, é possível que vejamos mais ataques terroristas, tanto no país, como no estrangeiro, juntamente com mais guerras, ilegais, dispendiosas e desnecessárias.

Artigo original en inglés :


The US-Al Qaeda Alliance: Bosnia, Kosovo and Now Libya. Washington’s On-Going Collusion with Terrorists
- by Prof. Peter Dale Scott – 2011-07-29

 

Tradução: Jorge Vasconcelos, ODiario.info

Peter Dale Scott, antigo diplomata canadiano e professor de Inglês na Universidade da Califórnia, Berkeley, é autor de Drugs Oil and War [Drogas, Petróleo e Guerra], The Road to 9/11 [O Caminho para o 11/9], e The War Conspiracy: JFK, 9/11, and the Deep Politics of War [A Conspiração da Guerra: JFK, o 11/9 e a Política Profunda da Guerra]. O seu mais recente livro é American War Machine: Deep Politics, the CIA Global Drug Connection and the Road to Afghanistan [A Máquina de Guerra Americana: Política Profunda, a Ligação Global da CIA à Droga e o Caminho para o Afeganistão]. O seu sítio da internet, contendo imensos dos seus escritos está aqui.
Citação recomendada: Peter Dale Scott, “Bosnia, Kosovo, and Now Libya: The Human Costs of Washington’s On-Going Collusion with Terrorists,” [“Bósnia, Kosovo e agora Líbia: Custos Humanos do Corrente Conluio entre Washington e Terroristas”] The Asia-Pacific Journal Vol 9, Issue 31 No 1, 1 de Agosto de 2011.

Peter Dale Scott é Investigador Associado do Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG) [Centro de Pesquisa sobre Globalização].

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• Peter Dale Scott, A Guerra Líbia, Poder Americano e Declínio do Sistema do Petrodólar
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Notas
1 Cf. Telegraph (London), “Cortes na Defesa em dúvida na Líbia, diz conselheiro militar,“ 7 de Abril de 2011, “A crise líbia levantou dúvidas sobre a revisão da defesa da Coligação e podia forçar os ministros a revogarem os cortes incluindo a raspagem dos jactos Harrier britânicos, disse um conselheiro militar sénior,” (link).
2 Scott, The Road to 9/11, 163-65.
3 Scott, The Road to 9/11, 44-45; citando Robert Dreyfuss, Devil’s Game, 109-11; Saïd Aburish, A Brutal Friendship, 60-61; Miles Copeland, The Game Player, 149-54. Cf. Ian Johnson, “A história secreta de Washington com a Irmandade Muçulmana,” New York Review of Books, 5 de Fevereiro de 2011.
4 John R. Schindler, Unholy Terror: Bosnia, Al-Qa’ida, and the Rise of Global Jihad, 71, 81. De acordo com Schindler, “a CNN mostrou repetidamente imagens de ‘muçulmanos mortos’ assassinados por sérvios, que eram na verdade sérvios assassinados por muçulmanos” (92).
5 Schindler, Unholy Terror, 91.
6 Schindler, Unholy Terror, 179-80; Christian Science Monitor, March 28, 2011. Em 1994, BHL apresentou o líder bósnio Izetbegovich ao presidente francês Mitterand; em 2011, BHL preparou o encontro de três líderes benghazi com o presidente francês Sarkozy. Cf. “Rebeldes líbios reconhecerão Israel, disse Bernard-Henri Lévy a Netanyahu,” Radio France Internationale, 2 de Junho de 2011, “O Conselho Nacional de Transição (CNT) dos rebeldes da Líbia está pronto a reconhecer Israel, de acordo com o filósofo francês Bernard-Henri Lévy, que diz ter passado a mensagem ao primeiro-ministro israelita Benjamin Netanyahu,” (link).
7 Sobre as queixas das grandes petrolíferas contra Kadhafi, ver Peter Dale Scott, “A Guerra Líbia, o Poder Americano e o Declínio do Sistema do Petrodólar “, Asian-Pacific Journal: Japan Focus, 27 de Abril de 2011.
8 Scott, Road to 9/11, 77; citando Diego Cordovez e Selig S. Harrison, Out of Afghanistan: The Inside Story of the Soviet Withdrawal [Fora do Afeganistão: a História Secreta da Retirada Soviética] (New York: Oxford University Press, 16), 16.
9 Scott, Road to 9/11, 72-75; citando de “As revelações de um antigo conselheiro de Carter: ‘Sim, a CIA entrou no Afeganistão antes dos russos…’” Le Nouvel Observateur [Paris], 15-21 de Janeiro de 1998: “B[rzezinski]: [A 3 de Julho de 1979] escrevi uma nota ao presidente, na qual lhe explicava que em minha opinião esta ajuda iria induzir uma intervenção militar soviética.… P: E nem lamenta ter apoiado o fundamentalismo islâmico, que deu armas e instrução a futuros terroristas? B: O que é mais importante na história mundial? Os talibãs ou o colapso do império soviético? Uns poucos muçulmanos agitados ou a libertação da Europa Central e o fim da guerra fria?”
10 Ahmed Rashid, Taliban, 129. De acordo com o autor espanhol Robert Montoya, a ideia nasceu no Safari Club de elite, que tinha sido criado pelo chefe dos serviços secretos francês Alexandre de Marenches em 1976, arrastando outros chefes da espionagem, como o general Akhtar Abdur Rahman do ISI no Paquistão e Kamal Adham da Arábia Saudita (Roberto Montoya, El Mundo [Madrid], 16 Fevereiro, 2003).
11 Scott, Road to 9/11, 139-40; citando Steven Emerson, American Jihad, 131-32.
12 Peter Dale Scott, “A Guerra Líbia, o Poder Americano e o Declínio do Sistema do Petrodólar “, Asian-Pacific Journal: Japan Focus, 27 de Abril de 2011.
13 “Empresa de relações públicas ajuda rebeldes líbios a fazerem campanha por apoio dos EUA,” The Hill.com, 12 de Abril de 2011.
14 Rob Crilly, Daily Telegraph (London), 23 de Março de 2011; citado em Stephen Lendman, “Mudança Planeada de Regime na Líbia,” SteveLendmanBlog, 28 de Março de 2011. Cf. Los Angeles Times, 24 de Março de 2011.
15 Morris Herman, “Milícias Rebeldes Incluem Traficantes de Humanos de Benghazi,” Foreign Policy Journal, 28 de Julho de 2011, citando Thomas C. Mountain.
16 Anissa Haddadi, “Representará Realmente o Conselho de Transição a Democracia Líbia e a Oposição a Kadhafi?” International Business Times, 20 de Julho de 2011.
17 Haddadi, idem.
18 Center for Defense Information, “Na Ribalta: O Grupo Islâmico de Combatentes Líbios (GICL),” 18 de Janeiro de 2005. Que o GICL está a prosseguir objectivos próprios pode explicar a apreensão pelos rebeldes de mísseis anti-aéreos dos arsenais de Kadhafi, agora sem utilidade contra ele (já sem força aérea) e que aparentemente estão a ser embarcados para fora da Líbia para venda ou utilização noutro sítio (New York Times, 15 de Julho de 2011).
19 Estudo de West Point de Dezembro de 2007, citado em Webster Tarpley, “Os Rebeldes Líbios da CIA: Os mesmos Terroristas que Mataram Tropa dos EUA e da NATO no Iraque” Tarpley.net, 24 de Março de 2011.
20 Daily Mail (London), 25 de Março de 2001, link; citado em Lendman; “Mudança Planeada de Regime na Líbia.”
21 Akhtar Jamal, “Forças dos EUA, Reino-Unido e França aterram na Líbia,” Pakistan Observer, Fevereiro 2011.
22 Gary Gambill, “O Grupo Islâmico de Combatentes Líbios (GICL), Jamestown Foundation,” Terrorism Monitor, 5 de Maio de 2005; citando Al-Hayat (London), 20 de Outubro de 1995 [“communiqué”]; “O caso Shayler: O Espantalho, o Coronel e o Denunciante Encarcerado,” The Observer (London), 9 de Agosto de 1998; Jean-Charles Brisard e Guillaume Dasquié, Ben Laden: La Verite interdite (Bin Laden: A Verdade Proibida). Cf. também Annie Machon, Espias, Mentiras e Denunciantes: MI5, MI6 e o caso Shayler (Book Guild Publishing, 2005) [Shayler].
23 Ex.: Washington Post, 7 de outubro de 2001: “Ao longo do tempo, alguns dissidentes suspeitos de envolvimento em actos terroristas por governos estrangeiros têm, por uma razão ou por outra, sido protegidos da extradição ou deportação pelo governo britânico …No passado, dizem especialistas em terrorismo, a Grã-Bretanha beneficiou significativamente com a sua disponibilidade para estender pelo menos hospitalidade condicional a um grande leque de dissidentes árabes e figuras da oposição…Mustafa Alani, um perito em terrorismo no Royal United Services Institute for Defense Studies, um grupo de estudos londrino, disse que [Anas] al-Liby tinha provavelmente sido deixado pelo governo britânico num limbo legal que lhe permitia ser usado ou descartado conforme as circunstâncias proporcionassem.”
24 “Sahelian Concern Deepens over Libya, AQIM,” [Aumenta Preocupação do Sahel com a Líbia e AQIM - Organização da Al-Qaeda no Magreb Islâmico] Sahel Blog, 2 de Maio de 2011. De acordo com o Los Angeles Times, a AQIM propôs-se a 24 de Fevereiro “fazer o que pudermos” para ajudar a causa dos rebeldes. (Ken Dilanian, “Os EUA não encontra sinal firme de presença da Al Qaeda na rebelião líbia,” Los Angeles Times, 24 de março de 2011). Cf. “Rebeldes da Líbia não são anti-ocidente, mas Qaeda é preocupante,” Reuters, 29 de março de 2011; “A ameaça mutante da al Qaeda no Maghreb islâmico,” Strategic Forum, National Defense University; CNN World, 25 de Fevereiro de 2011.
25 Andre Lesage, idem. Cf. “Aviões sob disfarce transportam droga através do Atlântico; Ligações à Al-Qaeda,” National Post, January 14, 2014; “Senhores da droga latinos encontram aliados em islamitas africanos,” Washington Times, November 17, 2009.
26 Uma história no New York Times (“Islamitas exilados vêem a rebelião desenrolar-se no seu país,” 19 de Julho de 2011) conta que membros KIFG do CNT “renunciaram à al Qaeda.” Contudo, nenhuma prova independente é adiantada que mostre uma mudança de política.
27 Michael Evans, “Soldados muçulmanos ‘falharam na defesa da cidade contra os sérvios’” Times (London), 14 de Julho de 1995.
28 Richard Palmer. “O que aconteceu realmente na Bósnia,” theTrumpet.com, 12 de Julho de 2011.
29 Schindler, Unholy Terror, 87; citando de Jan Willem Honig e Norbert Both, Srebrenica: Registo de um Crime de Guerra, 79.
30 John Rosenthal, “Os outros crimes da Bósnia,” BigPeace.com, 2 de Junho de 2011; resumo da entrevista de Galbraith por J.M. Berger, “Exclusivo: Política dos EUA sobre o Tráfico de Armas na Bósnia.”
31 Schindler, Unholy Terror, 182-83; “Exclusivo: Política dos EUA sobre o Tráfico de Armas na Bósnia.”; Cees Wiebes, Espionagem e Guerra na Bósnia 1992 1995 (Munster: LIT Verlag, 2003), 166-69.
32 “Aliados e Mentiras,” BBC OnLine, 22 de Junho de 2001; Wiebes, Espionagem e Guerra, 183. Também presente em Tuzla estava um americano que se apresentou como “major Guy Sands” e que dizia ter sido veterano com dez anos de guerra do Vietname. Cf. com o relatório sueco de Tuzla sobre um americano que não fazia segredo do seu passado nas Forças Especiais (Brendan O’Shea, Crise em Bihac: o Campo de Batalha Sangrento da Bósnia [Stroud, Gloucestershire: Sutton, 1998], p. 159). Para relatórios sobre mujahedin estrangeiros em ou próximo de Tuzla, ver Kohlmann, A Jihad da Al-Qaeda na Europa, 74, 155, 164.
33 Brendan O’Neill, “Como treinámos a al-Qa’eda,” Spectator (London), 13 de Setembro de 2003.
34 Wiebes, Espionagem e a Guerra da Bósnia, 177.
35 Wiebes, idem, 187, 196; citando Cameron Spence, Todas as Medidas Necessárias, 99-104.
36 Wiebes, idem, 184, 197.
37 “Os EUA usaram islamitas para armar os bósnios,” Guardian, 22 de Abril de 2002. Comparar a tese muito diferente de Richard Clarke, Contra Todos os Inimigos, 140: “Os EUA também bloquearam a influência iraniana e da al-Qaeda no país [Bósnia].”
38 Kohlmann, A Jihad da al-Qaeda na Europa, 39-41; citando Steve Coll e Steve LeVine, “Rede Global Fornece Dinheiro e Protecção,” Washington Post, 3 de Agosto de 1993. Cf. Schindler, Unholy Terror, 121-22.
39 Scott, Road to 9/11, 149-50; Kohlmann, ibidem, 45, 73-75.
40 Scott, Road to 9/11, 149.
41 Lawrence Wright: “Zawahiri decidiu procurar dinheiro no centro mundial do capitalismo de risco – Silicon Valley. Tinha estado anteriormente na América uma vez, em 1989, quando fez uma visita de recrutamento às instalações do gabinete de serviços dos mujahidin em Brooklyn. Segundo o FBI, voltou na primavera de 1993, desta vez a Santa Clara, na Califórnia, onde foi recebido por Ali Mohamed, o agente duplo.” Para mais sobre Ali Mohamed, e especificamente sobre como o FBI disse à RCMP para não o prender (o que o pôs Mohamed à vontade para planear a explosão da embaixada americana no Quénia), ver Peter Dale Scott, The Road to 9/11, 147-60.
42 Ottawa Citizen, 15 de Dezembro de 2001.
43 Sir Alfred Sherman, Discurso na Conferência Internacional Intervenção Americana nos Balcãs, 28 Fevereiro a 2 de Março de 1997. html
44 Cf. Schindler, Unholy Terror, 74: Izetbegovic “decidiu estragar a iniciativa, com o aparente incitamento de Warren Zimmermann [sic].” (Cf. 109-10). Zimmerman negou ter persuadido Izetbegovic, escrevendo numa carta ao New York Times “que tinha insistido com Izetbegovic para ‘cumprir os seus compromissos,’” (Steven L. Burg e Paul Shoup, A Guerra na Bósnia-Herzegovina, 114).
45 Washington Times, 4 de Maio de 1999. Frank Viviano, “Drogas Pagam o Conflito na Europa,” San Francisco Chronicle, 10 de Junho de 1994: “O contrabando de narcóticos tornou-se a principal fonte de financiamento das guerras civis já em curso , ou em rápida gestação, no sul da Europa e no Mediterrâneo oriental, de acordo com um relatório saído aqui esta semana. “O relatório do Observatoire Géopolitique des Drogues, ou Observatório Geopolítico da Droga, com base em Paris identifica beligerantes nas antigas repúblicas da Jugoslávia e na Turquia como elementos-chave do crescente tráfico regional de droga-para-armas. “Os nacionalistas albaneses da etnicamente tensa Macedónia e da província sérvia do Kosovo construíram uma vasta rede de heroína, indo dos campos de ópio do Paquistão até aos negociantes de armas no mercado-negro da Suíça, transportando cerca de 2 mil milhões de dólares de droga por ano no coração da Europa , diz o relatório. Mais de 500 albaneses do Kosovo ou macedónios estão presos na Suíça por crimes de tráfico de droga ou de armas e mais de 1000 outros estão sob acusação.”
46 Michael Levine, New American, 24 de Maio de 1999; citado no livro de Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed, A Guerra da Verdade, 41.
47 Ralf Mutschke, testemunho no Committee on the Judiciary, 13 de Dezembro de 2000.
48 Sunday Times (Londres), 12 de março de 2000: “Agim Ceku, o comandante do ELK nas últimas fases do conflito, tinha estabelecido contactos com os americanos através do seu trabalho no exército croata, que fora modernizado com a ajuda da Military Professional Resources Inc, empresa americana especializada em treino e encomendas militares. O pessoal desta empresa estava no Kosovo junto com o de uma outra empresa idêntica, Dyncorps [sic], que deu ajuda no programa apoiado pelos americanos para o exército bósnio.”
49 David Hackworth, “Procura-se: Armas para Alugar,” Hackworth.com, 9 de Julho de 2001. Cf. James R. Davis, Guerreiros da Fortuna: Exércitos Privados e a Nova Ordem Mundial, 112; P.W. Singer, Guerreiros de Empresa, 219.
50 Wiebes, Espionagem e a guerra na Bósnia 1992 – 1995, 66; Observer, 5 de novembro de 1995. J.M. Berger relata a partir de documentos desclassificados que o contrato da MPRI com a Bósnia foi preparado através de uma empresa privada dirigida pelo neocon Richard Perle: “O controverso filósofo neocon Richard Perle dirigiu uma obscura organização não-governamental encarregada de contratar uma empresa privada para orientar o programa do Departamento de Estado dos EUA “Treinar e Equipar” para a Bósnia-Herzegovina em 1996.
O grupo de Perle, “Instituto de Apoio à Aquisição”, contratou a Military Professional Resources Inc., em essência uma empresa de mercenários profissionais mais ou menos tão controversa como o próprio Perle. Não é de todo claro quem é responsável pelo Instituto ou porquê uma “organização não-governamental e não lucrativa” seria responsável pela escolha do receptor de um enorme contrato do Departamento de Estado numa das mais sensíveis questões da actualidade. Equipada com uma colecção de oficiais militares reformados, a MPRI estabeleceu-se a si mesma como virtual extensão do governo dos EUA tanto na Croácia, como na Bósnia, conforme documentado num extenso conjunto de documentos do Freedom of Information Act que publicarei durante as próximas semanas.
Os operacionais da MPRI foram encarregados da condução do país, recebendo pagamentos e armas da Arábia Saudita, do Kuwait e de outros países muçulmanos, que subscreveram operações da ordem das centenas de milhões de dólares.
Em muitos casos, estes pagamentos foram feitos directamente pelo Departamento de Estado. Nalguns casos, foram encaminhados fundos e armas para a Bósnia sem a aprovação expressa do Estado, mas frequentemente com o seu conhecimento, conforme documentado nos registos recentemente desclassificados. Assistência não autorizada parece ter vindo do Paquistão, UAE e Turquia, entre outros.” (Richard Perle, A MPRI e os Envios de Armas Bósnias,” Intelwire, 7 de Fevereiro de 2007).
51 Sir Alfred Sherman, “Império para o Novo Milénio?” The Centre for Peace in Balkans, 22 de Maio de 2000.
52 Cf. os cínicos comentários do grupo de análise suíço Zeit-Fragen: (Current Concerns, “Onde está o 8º corredor?” Setembro/Outubro de 2001): “Ao criar um ponto de tensão no Kosovo, os EUA ficam em condições de controlarem a Albânia e com ela o planeado oleoduto da AMBO… Os EUA mostram interesse evidente no controle desses estratégicos corredores de ligação de transporte nos Balcãs. Proibiram um projecto programado para ser construído através da Sérvia e ofereceram à Roménia 100 milhões de dólares para deslocarem o percurso do planeado oleoduto SEEL (Linha Europeia do Sudeste) para norte, para a Hungria. A firma italiana ENI tinha planeado este projecto de oleoduto utilizando infraestruturas existentes de um oleoduto na Eslovénia, Croácia e Sérvia. Os EUA bombardearam a secção jugoslava desta infraestrutura com notável persistência.”
53 Michael Levine, New American, 24 de Maio de 1999; citado em Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed, A Guerra da Verdade, 41.
54 Para detalhes, ver Scott, A Máquina de Guerra Americana, 84, 123, 151, etc.; Scott, Política Profunda e a Morte de JFK, 167.
55 Peter Klebnikov, “Heróis da Heroína,” Mother Jones, janeiro/fevereiro 2000. Clinton montou ao mesmo tempo uma vigorosa campanha contra a heroína colombiana, fazendo aumentar a procura pela heroína afegã. Conforme Klebnikov notou, “alguns funcionários da Casa Branca receiam que a heroína kosovar possa substituir a oferta colombiana. ‘Mesmo que eliminássemos toda a produção de heroína na Colômbia, de forma alguma conseguiríamos que não entrasse mais heroína nos EUA,’ diz Bob Agresti do Gabinete da Casa Branca da Polícia Nacional de Controle da Droga. ‘Olhe para os números. A Colômbia dá conta de apenas seis por cento da heroína mundial. O Sudoeste Asiático produz 75 por cento.’”
56 Patrick Graham, “Guerras da Droga: a Nova Batalha do Kosovo,” National Post, 13 de Abril de 2000.
57 Schindler, Unholy Terror, 324. Cf. Cristopher Deliso, O Futuro Califato Balcânico (New York: Praeger, 2007).
58 Scott, Road to 9/11, 152-53; citando Paul L. Williams, Al Qaeda, 117; Boston Globe, 3 de Fevereiro de 1995, “Figura citada num caso de terrorismo teria entrado nos EUA com a ajuda da CIA.”
59 Bergen, Holy War, Inc., 67; cf. Williams, Al Qaeda, 117.
60 Scott, Road to 9/11, 154-56, 160. Cf. Robert L. Friedman, “A CIA e o Xeique,” Village Voice, 30 de Março de 1993: “Conforme o investigador do Subcomité de Relações Externas do Senado Jack Blum disse: “Um dos grandes problemas aqui é que muitos suspeitos do atentado do World Trade Center estavam associados aos mujahedin. E há elementos do nosso governo absolutamente desinteressados de se seguir essa pista porque ela leva a pessoas que apoiámos na guerra do Afeganistão.”
61 Scott, Road to 9/11, 156-57; citando J.M. Berger, Ali Mohamed: Informações da Intelwire, 235-36.
62 Estanislao Oziewicz e Tu Thanh Ha, “O Canadá libertou operacional de topo da al-Qaeda,” Globe and Mail (Toronto), 22 de Novembro de 2001. Uma investigação da Lexis-Nexis com “Ali Mohamed” + Vancouver não forneceu resultados relevantes na imprensa americana.
63 Patrick Fitzgerald, Testemunho perante a Comissão do 9/11, Twelfth Public Hearing, 16 de Junho de 2004.
64 Peter Lance, Triple Cross, 274-77.
65 Tribunal Distrital dos Estados Unidos, Distrito Sul de Nova Iorque, “EUA v. Ali Mohamed,” S (7) 98 Cr. 1023, 20 de Outubro de 2000, link, 17; in J.M. Berger, Ali Mohamed, 294.
66 idem, S(7) 98 Cr. 1023, 27; in Berger, Ali Mohamed, 304.
67 O agente do FBI Jack Cloonan, resumindo uma entrevista com Ali Mohamed pós-9/11, in William F. Jasper, “Libertando um Terrorista,” New American, 26 de Novembro de 2007. Cf. Lance, Triple Cross, 382.
68 Paul Joseph Watson, “Os EUA atacam o Irão via grupo terrorista Jundullah fundado pela CIA,” NOW Observer, 20 de Outubro de 2009.

The G20 finance ministers and central bankers have put off an immediate decision to weigh up a global financial transaction tax (FTT) proposal at the forthcoming G20 Summit (Cannes, 3-4 November 2011).

The two-day Ministerial Meeting (14-15 October) in Paris took place against the backdrop of huge protests in US and Europe, galvanized by the Occupy Wall Street movement. At the Paris meeting, G20 finance ministers discussed myriad policy and implementation issues concerning world economy and financial markets. As anticipated, eurozone sovereign debt crisis dominated the discussions and the communiqué pressed Europe to act decisively on resolving the crisis at the forthcoming EU summit next week.

The Importance of the Ministerial Meeting

The Paris meeting was an important event as it was expected that the finance ministers would include the issue of FTT in an action plan to be presented before G20 leaders at the Cannes Summit. With the strong support of France and Germany, the prospects of an FTT looked brighter before the Paris meeting. Within civil society circles, there was considerable optimism that French President (and G20 chair) Nicolas Sarkozy would be able to pursue other G20 member-countries on the merits of the proposed FTT during the forthcoming Cannes Summit.

The FTT also received backing from the European Commission which recently announced the adoption of an EU-wide transaction tax in all 27 member-states of the European Union from 2014 onwards.

Surprisingly, the communiqué issued at the Paris meeting makes no reference to the importance and urgency of a global FTT. Most likely, the issue of FTT would be deliberated at the G20 Mexico Summit in 2012. By purposely not mentioning it in the communiqué, the opponents (particularly Canada and US) have managed to influence other G20 nations to delay the discussions on the proposed tax for almost a year, thereby weakening the political momentum generated on this important issue in the past few years.

In an unusual hard-hitting statement issued last week, German chancellor Angela Merkel criticized G20 nations which are opposed to the proposal of a financial transactions tax. “It can’t be that those outside the eurozone, who have pressed us time and again to take comprehensive action on the debt crisis, are at the same time working together to resist the introduction of a financial transaction tax,” said Ms. Merkel. “I don’t think this [opposition] is acceptable…We must ensure that financial market actors share in the costs of fighting the crisis. I will push for this until it happens, at least in Europe, even better worldwide,” she added.

The BRICS on FTT

Paradoxically, India remains opposed to a global FTT despite the fact that it levies a securities transaction tax in the financial markets. (For an analysis of India’s position on FTT, see Why We Need a Financial Transaction Tax: A Proposal for the G20). At the Paris meeting, a senior Finance Ministry official argued that India opposes the proposed tax on the grounds that it would put an additional burden on the domestic banking system. In the same vein, China opposes the tax because it may add more burdens on domestic banks.

On the other hand, South Africa strongly supported the idea of an FTT during the Paris meeting. In a joint statement on exploring the possibilities of raising additional funds to fight climate change, South Africa’s Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan and French Finance Minister Francois Baroin stated, “We strongly support other non-carbon related sources, such as a financial transaction tax.” The joint letter was circulated among the official delegates and media at the G20 meeting. Durban will host the 2011 United Nations Climate Change Conference later this year.

At the BRICS Finance Ministers press conference recently held during the autumn meetings of the IMF/World Bank (22 September 2011) Mr. Gordhan strongly supported the need for a global FTT. “The issue of financial transactions taxes is an important one. Given the fiscal challenges that many countries (particularly developing ones) face today, the issues of development aid and climate financing – both mitigation and adaptation – are serious challenges. South Africa does have that tax on share transactions and we will certainly want to consider financial transactions taxes generally …We look forward to the Gates report on innovative finance and its discussion. This is something that the French Presidency of the G20 has very timely put on the agenda and hopefully we will begin to make some progress in terms of mobilizing these funds,” he said.

Similarly Brazil (an important member of the G20 and BRICS countries) also supports the idea of an FTT. But India’s strong resistance to the FTT proposal seriously undermines the entire objective of India, Brazil and South Africa to carve out a common strategy at forthcoming G20 Cannes Summit.

These developments have come at a time when the trilateral India-Brazil-South Africa (IBSA) Dialogue Forum aimed at promoting international cooperation among these countries is taking place in Pretoria on 18 October 2011. The international economic issues are likely to dominate the IBSA summit. It is highly unlikely that India may change its stand on FTT at this summit in the spirit of promoting South-South cooperation.

This article first appeared on Madhyam’s website (www.madhyam.org.in) on October 17, 2011.

“…[O]ur leaders have pursued solutions that are not solving our problems, instead they propose policies that accomplish little … With democracy in crisis a true grassroots movement pointing out the flaws in our system is the first step in the right direction. Count me among those supporting and cheering on the Occupy Wall Street movement.”, Al Gore, former Vice President of the United States.

“They [the Occupy Wall Street Movement] blame, with some justification, the problems in the financial sector for getting us into this mess, and they’re dissatisfied with the policy response here in Washington. And at some level, I can’t blame them.” Ben Bernanke, Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.

“There has been class warfare going on,… It’s just that my class is winning. And my class isn’t just winning, I mean we’re killing them.”, Warren Buffett, Nebraska-based Berkshire Hathaway Hedge Fund, third richest man on the Planet.

“I think it takes that [the Occupy Wall Street Movement] to make things happen sometimes. ….[Over the past 15 years] we saw large corporations really screw people…. There has never been a time in my lifetime when the government is going to cut an incredible amount of programs that support poor people and feed them.” Howard Buffett, son of Warren Buffett

“Actually, I can understand [the OWS protesters'] sentiment, frankly…. And at the same time the decision not to inject capital into the banks, but to effectively relieve them of their bad assets and then allow them to earn their way out of a hole leaves the banks bumper profits and then allows them to pay bumper bonuses. And the contrast between the two I think is a large contingent [of both the Occupy Wall Street protests and the Tea Party movement].” George Soros, Chairman of the Soros Management Fund.

The Occupy Wall Street movement sweeping across the US faces a tricky dilemma, the outcome of which will determine its historic impact. Up to now, part of the movement’s strength derives from its diffuse, eclectic spread of voices. That enigma makes it hard to define and confront from the authorities’ point of view. However, sooner or later the campaign will have to set out its own agenda by defining demands and aims. Otherwise, it runs the risk of running out of the admirable popular momentum that it has thus far generated; also, such a vacuum allows others who do not share the ultimate concerns of the grassroots to define the direction of the movement – a direction that most likely will lead to a safe, blind alley – again from the authorities’ point of view. Confronting this dilemma inevitably requires political organization, which will require hardnosed choices about which allies and interests are to be aligned.

A good rule of thumb: as long as the mainstream media – and even sections of the so-called progressive media – remain hostile or menacing in its coverage, then we can be sure that the movement is proceeding towards a serious challenge to the powers that be.

Of the public figures that have come out recently to support the Occupy Wall Street movement perhaps the most bizarre are some of the Wall Street financiers themselves. Some of the big names, apparently rallying to the cause, include George Soros, Warren Buffett, Ben Bernanke and Al Gore.

The phrase “poachers becoming gamekeepers” comes to mind. How can financiers and speculators who are the embodiment of everything that is awry with the American economy be part of the solution? This is an example of where the movement needs to make tough political choices and to demonstrate that it understands the structural nature of the challenge that lies ahead. In not doing so, what we will witness is a classic maneouvre to co-opt a grassroots movement that could otherwise pose a serious challenge to the power structure that has so deformed the American economy and society.

The financiers supporting the OWS campaign may articulate popular disdain towards “greedy banksters” – but if the protest movement really does pose a serious challenge to the power structure, then it needs to go beyond personalizing attacks against criminal individuals and understand that the problem at hand is systemic.

What is needed is avoidance of analyzing the challenge in terms of “good financiers” and “bad banksters”. It is the entire system of finance capitalism that needs to be challenged. Accepting the support of seemingly benign financiers may galvanise certain feelgood populism, but it only obscures the systemic nature of the problem and therefore the solution.

In understanding the systemic challenge we need to see it in historic context. The US economy and that of Europe has exhausted itself from the vast polarization of wealth over several decades. The economy has deteriorated to a deformed state, in which a tiny layer of society has and is accumulating vast wealth while the preponderant majority struggle to make a basic living. This elite financial aristocracy is of a piece with the feudal aristocracy of bygone centuries in Europe who derived their wealth by parasiting off the peasantry. The aristocracy in both instances is not involved in the production of goods or manufactures; they exist by lording it over the masses, extracting from the latter tributes in a web of rentier relationships.

It is something of an historical achievement that the US, which began its modern development free of the feudal ruling class that so exploited the European masses, should now be so dominated by an aristocracy that harks back to the rapacious nobles of Europe. The Republic of America was supposed to herald the ascent of democratic rights, to mark a new beginning for universal common rights, whereby rule by divine right was cast aside. Albeit that the limits of American democracy were defined by what its bourgeois Founding Fathers would tolerate, the US nevertheless represented a radical break from the European order.

In Europe, fearing that the revolutionary impulse would go too far, the emergent European bourgeoisie made its peace with the feudal aristocracy to keep the masses in check. The compromise between “new” and “old” money in Europe can be seen today in the continued constitutional role of royal families and lords, for example in Spain, Holland, Norway and most prominently in Britain. Meanwhile, in the US, not having a feudal past, the new social contract was between the capitalist manufacturers and nascent industrialists and the wider working population. In that way, the US, it could be argued, represented a more progressive democracy, offering greater rights and opportunities to the masses.

But over the past three decades, the progressive nature of American capitalist democracy has been completely eviscerated. The implicit social contract, whereby the workers could expect a fairer share of the wealth that they ultimately produce, has been ripped asunder. The paid and bought lawmakers of the two main political parties have ensured that policies relentlessly siphon off wealth to the ruling class. With rising poverty and likewise plummeting demand, even the traditional capitalists who owned the means of production can no longer find viable markets. The manufacturing bourgeoisie – the architects of the American republic – have now been superseded by a financial aristocracy, who no longer contribute accumulated capital in any productive way. They are an idle class of speculators, who make money off money. The domination of means of exchange over means of production is now the hallmark of late capitalism. This is the systemic nature of the problem and that can’t be altered or mitigated by even the most benign and well-intentioned individual financiers.

The Occupy Wall Street campaign now erupting in hundreds of cities across the US, Canada and Western Europe is a potentially dramatic development. But only if it challenges the system at the root, not by pruning here and there. That root is the capitalist economy that has degenerated into a parasitical aristocracy.

The gratuitous violence that protesters are being met with by the rulers’ henchmen, and the vilification that they are being subjected to by the rulers’ political and media lackeys, are sure signs that the people are pressing a profound challenge. Another sure sign of how seriously the movement is challenging the system will be how far the coterie of supporting financiers appears to stay with the movement. For they are part of the problem, not the solution.

In creating a popular groundswell for potentially radical change that safeguards the interests of the mass of ordinary working Americans, the OWS movement deserves much credit. But not credit from finance capitalists who have bankrupted the US and the world.

Finian Cunnningham is Global Research’s Middle East and East Africa correspondent. [email protected]  

Global Research is pleased to announce the publication of a new book entitled The Global Economic Crisis, The Great Depression of the XXI Century, Michel Chossudovsky and Andrew Gavin Marshall, Editors. 

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In all major regions of the world, the economic recession is deep-seated, resulting in mass unemployment, the collapse of state social programs and the impoverishment of millions of people. The meltdown of financial markets was the result of institutionalized fraud and financial manipulation. The economic crisis is accompanied by a worldwide process of militarization, a “war without borders” led by the U.S. and its NATO allies.

This book takes the reader through the corridors of the Federal Reserve, into the plush corporate boardrooms on Wall Street where far-reaching financial transactions are routinely undertaken.

Each of the authors in this timely collection digs beneath the gilded surface to reveal a complex web of deceit and media distortion which serves to conceal the workings of the global economic system and its devastating impacts on people`s lives.

Michel Chossudovsky is an award-winning author, Professor of Economics (Emeritus) at the University of Ottawa and Director of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG), Montreal. He is the author of The Globalization of Poverty and The New World Order (2003) and America’s “War on Terrorism” (2005). He is also a contributor to the Encyclopaedia Britannica. His writings have been published in more than twenty languages.

Andrew Gavin Marshall is an independent writer both on the contemporary structures of capitalism as well as on the history of the global political economy. He is a Research Associate with the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG).

“This important collection offers the reader a most comprehensive analysis of the various facets – especially the financial, social and military ramifications – from an outstanding list of world-class social thinkers.” -Mario Seccareccia, Professor of Economics, University of Ottawa

“In-depth investigations of the inner workings of the plutocracy in crisis, presented by some of our best politico-economic analysts. This book should help put to rest the hallucinations of ‘free market’ ideology.” -Michael Parenti, author of God and His Demons and Contrary Notions

“Provides a very readable exposé of a global economic system, manipulated by a handful of extremely powerful economic actors for their own benefit, to enrich a few at the expense of an ever-growing majority.” -David Ray Griffin, author of The New Pearl Harbor Revisited

The complex causes as well as the devastating consequences of the economic crisis are carefully scrutinized with contributions from Ellen Brown, Tom Burghardt, Michel Chossudovsky, Richard C. Cook, Shamus Cooke, John Bellamy Foster, Michael Hudson,  Tanya Cariina Hsu, Fred Magdoff,  Andrew Gavin Marshall, James Petras, Peter Phillips, Peter Dale Scott, Bill Van Auken, Claudia von Werlhof and Mike Whitney.

Despite the diversity of viewpoints and perspectives presented within this volume, all of the contributors ultimately come to the same conclusion: humanity is at the crossroads of the most serious economic and social crisis in modern history.

“This meticulous, vital, timely and accessible work unravels the history of a hydra-headed monster: military, media and politics, culminating in “humanity at the crossroads”; the current unprecedented economic and social crisis… From the first page of the preface of The Global Economic Crisis, the reasons for all unravel with compelling clarity. For those asking “why?” this book has the answers.” –Felicity Arbuthnot, award-winning author and journalist based in London.

“The current economic crisis, its causes and hopefully its cure have been a mystery for most people. I welcome a readable exposition of the global dimensions of the crisis and hope for some clarity on how to better organize money locally and internationally for the future.”  -Dr. Rosalie Bertell, renowned scientist, Alternative Nobel Prize laureate and Regent, International Physicians for Humanitarian Medicine, Geneva

“This work is much more than a path-breaking and profound historical analysis of the actors and institutions, it is an affirmation of the authors’ belief that a better world is feasible and that it can be achieved by collective organized actions and faith in the sustainability of a democratic order.” -Frederick Clairmonte, distinguished analyst of the global political economy and author of the 1960s classic, The Rise and Fall of Economic Liberalism: The Making of the Economic Gulag

“Decades of profligate economic policies and promiscuous military interventions reached a critical mass, exploding in the meltdown of globalization in 2008. Today, the economic meltdown is reconfiguring everything – global society, economy and culture. This book is engineering a revolution by introducing an innovative global theory of economics.” -Michael Carmichael, prominent author, historian and president of the Planetary Movement

The Global Economic Crisis
The Great Depression of the XXI Century

Michel Chossudovsky and Andrew Gavin Marshall (Editors)

TO READ THE PREFACE, CLICK HERE

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Preface Michel Chossudovsky and Andrew Gavin Marshall

PART I THE GLOBAL ECONOMIC CRISIS

Chapter 1 The Global Economic Crisis: An Overview Michel Chossudovsky
Chapter 2 Death of the American Empire Tanya Cariina Hsu
Chapter 3 Financial Implosion and Economic Stagnation John Bellamy Foster and Fred Magdoff
Chapter 4 Depression: The Crisis of Capitalism James Petras
Chapter 5 Globalization and Neoliberalism: Is there an Alternative to Plundering the Earth? Claudia von Werlhof
Chapter 6 The Economy’s Search for a “New Normal” Shamus Cooke

PART II GLOBAL POVERTY

Chapter 7 Global Poverty and the Economic Crisis Michel Chossudovsky
Chapter 8 Poverty and Social Inequality Peter Phillips

PART III WAR, NATIONAL SECURITY AND WORLD GOVERNMENT

Chapter 9 War and the Economic Crisis Michel Chossudovsky
Chapter 10 The “Dollar Glut” Finances America’s Global Military Build-Up Michael Hudson
Chapter 11 Martial Law, the Financial Bailout and War Peter Dale Scott
Chapter 12 Pentagon and Intelligence Black Budget Operations Tom Burghardt
Chapter 13 The Economic Crisis “Threatens National Security” in America Bill Van Auken
Chapter 14 The Political Economy of World Government Andrew Gavin Marshall

PART IV THE GLOBAL MONETARY SYSTEM

Chapter 15 Central Banking: Managing the Global Political Economy Andrew Gavin Marshall
Chapter 16 The Towers of Basel: Secretive Plan to Create a Global Central Bank Ellen Brown
Chapter 17 The Financial New World Order: Towards A Global Currency Andrew Gavin Marshall
Chapter 18 Democratizing the Monetary System Richard C. Cook

PART V THE SHADOW BANKING SYSTEM

Chapter 19 Wall Street’s Ponzi Scheme Ellen Brown,
Chapter 20 Securitization: The Biggest Rip-off Ever Mike Whitney  

TO READ THE PREFACE CLICK HERE

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 Global Research Articles by Michel Chossudovsky

Next Steps for the Occupy Movement

October 17th, 2011 by Shamus Cooke

As the Occupy Movement gains strength nationally and internationally, questions of “what next” are popping up. Although there are no easy answers or ready- to-order recipes for moving forward, there are general ideas that can help unite the Occupy Movements with the broader community of the 99% — which is the most urgent need at the moment. Why the urgency? Writer Chris Hedges explains:

“The state and corporate forces are determined to crush this… They are terrified this will spread. They have their long phalanxes of police on motorcycles, their rows of white paddy wagons, their foot soldiers hunting for you on the streets with pepper spray and orange plastic nets…”

The only reason that surviving occupied spots have been spared is because of the broader sympathy of the 99% combined with the direct participation of large sections of working people at marches and demonstrations. The corporate elite fear a strong, united movement like vampires fear sunlight.

Therefore, city governments are slow-playing the Occupy Movement where it is especially strong — New York and Portland, Oregon, etc. — and are attacking quickly in cities where momentum hasn’t caught fire —, Denver, Boston, etc. The massive demonstrations in New York and Portland have protected the occupied spaces thus far, as the mayor, police,and media attempt to chip away at public opinion by exploiting disunity in the movement or focusing on individuals promoting violence, drug use, etc.

To combat this dynamic, the Occupy Movement people needs to unite around common messages that they can effectively broadcast to those 99% not yet on the streets; or to maintain the sympathy of those who’ve already attended large marches and demonstrations. And although sections of the Occupy Movement scoff at demands, they are crucially necessary. Demands unite people in action, and distinguish them from their opponents; demands give an aim and purpose to a movement and act as a communications and recruiting tool to the wider public. There is nothing to win if no demands are articulated.

One reason that the wealthy are strong is because they are united around demands that raise profits for the corporations they own: slashing wages and benefits, destroying unions, lowering corporate tax rates, destroying social programs, privatization, ending Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security, etc.

To consolidate the ranks of the Occupy Movement we need similar demands that can inspire the 99%. These are the type of demands that will spur people into action — demands that will get working class people off their couches and into the streets! The immediate task of the movement is to broadcast demands that will agitate the majority of the 99% into action.

On a national level these demands are obvious: Tax the Rich to create a federal public jobs program, fully fund Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security and other social programs, fully fund public education, single payer health care, end the wars. These are demands that can unite the Occupy Movement and working people nationally while preventing Democrats and Republicans from taking it over. Poll after poll has recorded that an overwhelming majority of the U.S. population strongly supports these demands, and many unions, including the national AFL-CIO have gone on record supporting them.

On a city and state level these demands can be translated to local issues; cities and states are facing budget deficits that are resulting in cuts to education, social services and resulting in more unemployment. Local Occupy Movements can demand that the local top1% pay more to make up for these, while also demanding that cities and states create jobs with this money.

Corporations are united in their purpose of profit chasing and social service slashing; so too must we be united in saving social services and taxing corporate profits, on a local and national level.

The Occupy Movement has more than room for an umbrella of demands from diverse sections of working class people, but now we must focus on what unites the vast majority, since the corporations have focused on dividing us for decades. The more diverse demands of the working class can find a safe place for expression and growth only within a mass, united movement.

There can be no doubt that the Occupy Movement will either continue to grow into a massive social movement or shrink until the corporate-elite are able to snuff it out. In order for the movement to grow, it must truly attract the broader 99%, not merely the most progressive 10%. Focusing on broad but specific demands that all working people will fight for will attract organized labor, the elderly, students, minorities, i.e., the whole working class.

A working class mass movement has not existed in the United States since the 1930s and 40s when it resulted in spectacular progressive change in America, even if it was cut short before European-style social programs were achieved. Nevertheless, the achievements of the mass movements of past generations are under attack — Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and a living wage, etc. Only a real working class movement can save these programs and expand them.

If the Occupy Movement fails, the far right will be emboldened. They are trembling at the potential power of the movement and have lost all momentum themselves. If we lose the initiative, they will immediately seize it to press their agenda further and faster. Only by expanding the movement can we extinguish the power of the corporate elite. We have history on our side; let’s not squander it.

The Occupy Movement represents a turning point in history. But in order to achieve its potential, it must reach out to the 99% and draw the majority into its ranks. Then it will have the power to change the agenda of this country, redraw the political map, and create a government that will operate in the interests of the vast majority, not the 1%. Once this change begins to unfold, there are no limits to what it could accomplish.

Shamus Cooke is a social service worker, trade unionist and writer for Workers Action (www.workerscompass.org  

OCCUPY WALL STREET, SELECTED ARTICLES

October 16th, 2011 by Global Research

OCCUPY WALL STREET, SELECTED ARTICLES


Statement of Solidarity, Occupy Wall Street, Zucotti Park
 
- by NYC General Assembly, Occupy Wall Street – 2011-10-16

Fake Revolutions: The Civil Society Revolution Consulting Business
- by Tony Cartalucci – 2011-10-13


Occupy Wall Street and “The American Autumn”: Is It a “Colored Revolution”?
- by Michel Chossudovsky – 2011-10-13

Historically, progressive social movements have been infiltrated, their leaders co-opted and manipulated, through the corporate funding of non-governmental organizations, trade unions and political parties…

Occupy Wall Street: FAQ
- by Nathan Schneider – 2011-10-12


VIDEO: “The Revolution Business”: “Occupy Wall Street” Affiliated With “Professional Revolutionary Organization” OTPOR (CIA)
- 2011-10-08


The Logic of Occupy Wall Street for Canada
 
- by Justin Podur – 2011-10-16


“Manufacturing Dissent”: The Corporate Financing of the Protest Movement
 
- by Michel Chossudovsky – 2011-10-15


“We the People”: Awaking from our Slumber
 
- by Dr. Ilya Sandra Perlingieri – 2011-10-15


Colored Revolutions: A New Form of Regime Change, Made in the USA
 
- by Eva Golinger – 2011-10-14


The Democratic Party: An Insidious Threat to the Occupy Wall Street Movement
 
- by Prof. Ismael Hossein-zadeh – 2011-10-14


The 1% and Capitalism
 
- by Shamus Cooke – 2011-10-13


The Seven Biggest Economic Lies
 
- by Prof. Robert Reich – 2011-10-12


VIDEO: “I am not moving”: Confronting America’s Hypocrisy
New short film now on GRTV
- by Corey Ogilvie – 2011-10-12


VIDEO: The Greek People Never Agreed to the Debt or Austerity
Watch the new interview on GRTV
- by Michael Hudson – 2011-10-10


Occupy Wall Street and Occupy the Fed Are Two Sides of the Same Coin
 
- by Washington’s Blog – 2011-10-10

As the COP Blames Obama For Wall Street “Mobs’ The Occupy Movement Spreads Nationwide And Is No Friend of The President
 
- by Danny Schechter – 2011-10-09


#Occupy Wall Street: Change will not come until we Understand and Rewrite the Entire Balance of Power in America
- by Tony Cartalucci – 2011-10-09


Corporate-financier dominated Western media attempts to Wish-away “Occupy the Fed” Movement
 
- by Tony Cartalucci – 2011-10-08


Occupy Wall Street: “The Blood-suckers of Wall Street”.The Size of the Ripoff
 
- by Prof. John Weeks – 2011-10-07


The American People Are Damned: The US government has been selling out its Citizens in Pursuit of Money and Power
 
- by Devon DB – 2011-10-04


Occupy Wall Street: A Globalist Op?
How can a Movement funded by Globalists end the Globalist Scheme to Enslave the World?
- by Kurt Nimmo – 2011-10-03

Occupy Wall Street Protesters suckered into a trap
 
- by Paul Joseph Watson – 2011-10-03

Americans Are Protesting: Corruption, Soaring Food Prices and Unemployment
 
- by Washington’s Blog – 2011-10-03


The Occupy Wall Street Movement. Analysis of the Protest Movement
 
- by Shamus Cooke – 2011-10-03


VIDEO: Engineering the Global Crisis: Financial Destabilization for Profiteering and Power
New Feature Report now on GRTV
- by James Corbett, Bob Chapman – 2011-09-29


The Many Frauds of the “Buffett Rule”
 
- by Patrick Martin – 2011-09-28


The Federal Reserve Plans to Identify “Key Bloggers”, Monitor Conversations about The Fed on Facebook, Twitter, Forums & Blogs
 
- by The Economic Collapse Blog – 2011-09-26


Occcupy Wall Street
A Report from A Front That May Soon Be Shut Down
- by Danny Schechter – 2011-09-25


Move On Tries to Take Over Occupy Wall Street Protests
 
- by Washington’s Blog – 2011-10-15

Dancing on Our Occupation Permit
 
- by David Swanson – 2011-10-10

Occupy Wall Street: We Danced Waiting for the Police Who Never Came
 
- by Kevin Zeese – 2011-10-10

Welcome to the #OWS 99% Movement “We Will NOT Be Co-Opted”
 
- by Washington’s Blog – 2011-10-08

Occupy Portland Is Born with Ten Thousand Strong
 
- by Shamus Cooke – 2011-10-07


Report from the Frontlines: Police Attack Protesters, 28 #OccupyWallStreet Arrests (Videos)
 
- by David DeGraw – 2011-10-06


VIDEO: Brooklyn Bridge: Police Arrest 700 Occupy Wall Street Protesters
See the raw footage on GRTV
- by Daryl Lang – 2011-10-02

Unions Promise Support As #OccupyWallStreet Enters Third Week
 
- by Danny Schechter – 2011-10-01

Revelations by the Chaos Computer Club (CCC) that German secret state agencies are installing spyware on personal computers capable of transforming a PC’s webcam and microphone into a listening device, sparked outrage across the political spectrum.

It has since emerged that despite legal requirements that police do so only with a warrant and only if surveillance intercepts are used to prevent threats to “life, limb or liberty,” authorities are not complying with strict limits laid down by Germany’s Supreme Court.

And while these disclosures may have ignited a political firestorm in Berlin, they will come as no surprise to readers of Antifascist Calling.

Three years ago, I reported that Germany’s foreign intelligence service, the Bundesnachrichtendienst or BND, was caught up in a major scandal after the whistleblowing web site WikiLeaks, published documents which revealed that the agency had extensively spied on, and even recruited, journalists for use in illicit intelligence operations.

Recalling the CIA’s long-running Operation Mockingbird program that enrolled journalists as spies in what are now euphemistically called “influence operations,” the covert manipulation of the domestic and foreign press according to WikiLeaks, showed “the extent to which the collaboration of journalists with intelligence agencies has become common and to what dimensions consent is manufactured in the interests of those involved.”

BBC News reported that “Bavaria has admitted using the spyware, but claimed it had acted within the law.” And Deutsche Welle disclosed that “several additional German states have admitted to deploying spyware,” including “Baden-Württemberg, Brandenburg, Schleswig-Holstein and Lower Saxony,” but like their counterparts in Bavaria, those officials also claimed they had operated “within the parameters of the law”

As I have written many times, the secret state is bound by their own set of “laws.” Normal rules and procedures which are supposed to protect citizens from unwarranted government intrusions are deemed inoperative for reasons of “national security.”

In the United States, constitutional protections designed to guarantee the right of citizens to protest, enjoy a modicum of privacy in their daily lives or, at the most basic level, have their day in court before being executed, have been overthrown by two successive administrations who assert the right to conduct the affairs of state in secret, according to a set of legal guidelines which are unreviewable by any court.

It would appear that similar moves are underway in Germany.


‘Backdoor Functionality’

The Chaos Computer Club revealed in their analysis that when they reverse engineered the program, variously dubbed “0zapftis”, “Bundestrojaner” or “R2D2,” they discovered that the spyware “found in the wild” and “submitted to the CCC anonymously,” can “not only siphon away intimate data but also offers a remote control or backdoor functionality for uploading and executing arbitrary other programs. Significant design and implementation flaws make all of the functionality available to anyone on the internet.”

Club researchers learned that “the trojan’s developers never even tried to put in technical safeguards to make sure the malware can exclusively be used for wiretapping internet telephony, as set forth by the constitution court. On the contrary, the design included functionality to clandestinely add more components over the network right from the start, making it a bridge-head to further infiltrate the computer.”

“The government malware can,” analysts noted, “unchecked by a judge, load extensions by remote control, to use the trojan for other functions, including but not limited to eavesdropping.”

“This complete control over the infected PC, is open not just to the agency that put it there, but to everyone. It could even be used to upload falsified ‘evidence’ against the PC’s owner, or to delete files, which puts the whole rationale for this method of investigation into question.”

Their study also “revealed serious security holes that the trojan is tearing into infected systems. The screenshots and audio files it sends out are encrypted in an incompetent way, the commands from the control software to the trojan are even completely unencrypted. Neither the commands to the trojan nor its replies are authenticated or have their integrity protected.”

“We were surprised and shocked by the lack of even elementary security in the code. Any attacker could assume control of a computer infiltrated by the German law enforcement authorities,” a CCC spokesperson commented. “The security level this trojan leaves the infected systems in is comparable to it setting all passwords to ’1234′.”


Nothing ‘Magical’ about this ‘Lantern’

There are glaring similarities between the “R2D2″ package deployed by German police and “Magic Lantern” software used by the FBI. As with Bureau spyware, the German program is a keystroke logging virus installed via a malicious email attachment or by exploiting operating system vulnerabilities.

When news of the FBI program first broke back in 2000, the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) obtained documents under a Freedom of Information Act request relating to the system, which were part of a suite of surveillance tools then called Carnivore.

At the time, EPIC revealed that the FBI “had developed an Internet monitoring system that would be installed at the facilities of an Internet Service Provider (ISP) and would monitor all traffic moving through that ISP.”

Once a user is spoofed into installing the malicious Trojan, it is activated when PGP encryption is used to enhance email security. When switched on, the Trojan will log the PGP password which will then allow the agents to read the encrypted communications unbeknownst to the sender. Since its first iteration in the 1990s, such programs are exponentially more sophisticated and are now capable of scooping-up virtually everything a user stores on a computer or handset.

A 2007 exposé by Wired Magazine revealed that Magic Lantern’s “computer and internet protocol address verifier” or CIPAV, “gathers a wide range of information, including the computer’s IP address; MAC address; open ports; a list of running programs; the operating system type, version and serial number; preferred internet browser and version; the computer’s registered owner and registered company name; the current logged-in user name and the last-visited URL.”

And once that data was obtained, it was siphoned-off to the Bureau’s technology laboratory in Quantico, Virginia via fiber optic splitter cables.

As whistleblower Babak Pasdar revealed in 2008, following earlier disclosures by AT&T whistleblower Mark Klein, Verizon, and other giant telecommunications firms, including AT&T, maintained a high-speed DS-3 digital line that handed the Bureau and other security agencies “unfettered” access to the carrier’s wireless network, including billing records and customer data “transmitted wirelessly.”

Just after the scandal broke, Wired Magazine disclosed that “two years before the Bavarian state in Germany began using a controversial spy tool to gather evidence from suspect computers, German authorities approached the Federal Bureau of Investigation to discuss a similar tool the U.S. law enforcement agency was using.”

“Bavarian authorities,” Wired reported, “began using their spyware in 2009. It’s not known if that spyware is based on the FBI’s, but in July 2007, German authorities contacted the FBI seeking information about its tool.”

The FBI’s assistant legal attache in Frankfurt “sent an email to Bureau colleagues on July 24, 2007, writing, ‘I am embarrassed to be approaching you again with a request from the Germans … but they now have asked us about CIPAV (Computer Internet Protocol Address Verifier) software, allegedly used by the Bu[reau]‘.”

The email uncovered by Wired was part of a huge cache of files obtained by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) in response to their 2007 Freedom of Information Act request for data on CIPAV.

In the years since those disclosures, secret state surveillance is more pervasive than ever and and now includes the “lawful interception” of GPS locational data streamed automatically to their manufacturers or hosting services by smart phones.

It appears that German secret state officials are playing a similar game. According to Der Spiegel, at least two agencies, the Bundeskriminalamt, or BKA, the federal crime investigation agency equivalent to the FBI, and some 16 Landeskriminalamt or LKAs, regional investigative bureaus, may have deployed the malware during wide-ranging investigations unrelated to terrorism.

Following Chaos Computer Club revelations, it is clear that German authorities have been caught red-handed violating a landmark decision by the Supreme Court. “The court,” Der Spiegel noted, “specified that online spying was only permissible if there was concrete evidence of danger to individuals or society.”

In a follow-up piece, Der Spiegel disclosed that the firm DigiTask was the spyware’s developer. Along with hundreds of similar firms, DigiTask is a niche security outfit that develops applications for the so-called “lawful interception” market.

In 2008, WikiLeaks released two documents concerning “interception technology for Skype and SSL in Bavaria, Germany. The first document is a communication by the Bavarian Ministry of Justice to the prosecutors office, relating to cost distribution for the interception licenses between police and prosecution. The second document allegedly presents the offer made by Digitask, the German company developing the technology, and holds information on pricing and license model, high-level technology descriptions and other detail.”

According to the WikiLeaks analysis, the DigiTask offer “introduces a basic description of the cryptographic workings of Skype, and concludes that new systems are needed to spy on Skype calls.”

We were informed in that letter that German police were interested in standing-up a “Skype Capture Unit.”

“In a nutshell: malware is installed onto a target machine, to intercept Skype Voice and Chat. Another feature introduced is a recording proxy, that is not part of the offer, yet would allow for anonymous proxying of recorded information to a target recording station. Access to the recording station is possible via a multimedia streaming client, supposedly offering real-time interception.”

“Another part of the offer,” WikiLeaks noted, was related to “an interception method for SSL based communication, working on the same principle of establishing a man-in-the-middle attack on the key material on the client machine. According to the offer, this method works for Internet Explorer and Firefox web browsers. Digitask also recommends using overseas proxy servers, to cover the tracks of all activities.”

As it turns out those proxy servers were conveniently located in the United States. This raises the distinct possibility that information captured by German secret state officials is also being shared with “partner agencies” of their close NATO ally, the CIA, FBI and NSA.

This was confirmed by CCC’s analysis of R2D2′s code. “To avoid the location of the command and control server, all data is redirected through a rented dedicated server in a data center in the USA. The control of this malware is only partially within the borders of its jurisdiction.”

“Considering the incompetent encryption and the missing digital signatures on the command channel, this poses an unacceptable and incalculable risk. It also poses the question how a citizen is supposed to get their right of legal redress in the case the wiretapping data get lost outside Germany, or the command channel is misused.”

The short answer is, they can’t.

Aside from lining the pockets of DigiTask shareholders, there are more sinister uses for the malware. As the World Socialist Web Site noted “the remote-control function could be used to load and execute malicious software, and to plant bogus digital evidence on the computer, which can then be detected if the computer was seized. A suspect would have no way of proving that this had happened.”

This would certainly be a convenient way to “neutralize” a troublesome politician, journalist or over-eager anticorporate campaigner.


‘Less Democracy’

Following similar efforts in the United States, evidence that police are illegally spying on German citizens using sophisticated malware developed for the government are neither benign nor accidental events.

As a recent article in German Foreign Policy disclosed, leading voices in Europe’s largest state are “pleading for a transition toward ‘less democracy’.” A recent book, published under the title, Dare Less Democracy, claims that the “voice of the people” and the “‘emancipatory Zeitgeist, putting everything into question,’ has a too ‘paralyzing influence” on current governance’.”

“The author,” the critical online leftist magazine observes, “demands to ‘correct the system’ for ‘more efficient policy making.’ These ‘corrections’ must include the dismantlement of democratic participation.”

Author Laszlo Trankovits, the bureau chief of the Deutsche Presse Agentur in South Africa, who had previously worked for the agency in Washington “as its White House correspondent,” explained “it should never be suggested that a ‘democratic society can do away with inequality and establish social justice’.”

“Trankovits,” German Foreign Policy notes, is “a member of the elitist Rotary-Club.” He demands that “the elite clearly ‘commits itself to capitalism and profit,’ and that ‘intelligent forms of public relations’ be used to communicate policy measures to the population. However, the demand for more ‘transparency’ is ‘counterproductive and paralyzing’ for any ‘governance efficiency’ and must be rejected.”

That drivel such as this was penned by a journalist for Germany’s leading news agency, to whit, that the media should serve as a propaganda mouthpiece for casino capitalist interests, is one more sign that democratic norms, already seriously eroded in the West, are now being rapidly jettisoned by our political masters.

With the global capitalist system on the verge of a repeat performance of the 2008 meltdown, and with a worldwide resurgence of opposition to the one-sided costs of saving a system of financial plunder borne by the working class, elite calls for “less democracy” are warning signs that stern measures, including blanket surveillance and naked police violence, are in the offing.

Tom Burghardt is a researcher and activist based in the San Francisco Bay Area. In addition to publishing in Covert Action Quarterly and Global Research, Montreal, he is a Contributing Editor with Cyrano’s Journal Today. His articles can be read on Dissident Voice, The Intelligence Daily, Pacific Free Press, Uncommon Thought Journal, and the whistleblowing website WikiLeaks. He is the editor of Police State America: U.S. Military “Civil Disturbance” Planning, distributed by AK Press and has contributed to the new book from Global Research, The Global Economic Crisis: The Great Depression of the XXI Century.

Do you want to know the real reason banks aren’t lending and the PIIGS [Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece, Spain] have control of the barnyard in Europe?

It’s because risk in the $600 trillion derivatives market isn’t evening out. To the contrary, it’s growing increasingly concentrated among a select few banks, especially here in the United States.

In 2009, five banks held 80% of derivatives in America. Now, just four banks hold a staggering 95.9% of U.S. derivatives, according to a recent report from the Office of the Currency Comptroller.

The four banks in question: JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM), Citigroup Inc. (NYSE: C), Bank of America Corp. (NYSE: BAC) and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (NYSE: GS).

Derivatives played a crucial role in bringing down the global economy, so you would think that the world’s top policymakers would have reined these things in by now – but they haven’t.

Instead of attacking the problem, regulators have let it spiral out of control, and the result is a $600 trillion time bomb called the derivatives market.

Think I’m exaggerating?

The notional value of the world’s derivatives actually is estimated at more than $600 trillion. Notional value, of course, is the total value of a leveraged position’s assets. This distinction is necessary because when you’re talking about leveraged assets like options and derivatives, a little bit of money can control a disproportionately large position that may be as much as 5, 10, 30, or, in extreme cases, 100 times greater than investments that could be funded only in cash instruments.

The world’s gross domestic product (GDP) is only about $65 trillion, or roughly 10.83% of the worldwide value of the global derivatives market, according to The Economist. So there is literally not enough money on the planet to backstop the banks trading these things if they run into trouble.

Keith Fitz-Gerald is Chief Investment Strategist, Money Morning

Statement of Solidarity, Occupy Wall Street, Zucotti Park

October 16th, 2011 by NYC General Assembly, Occupy Wall Street

Global Research Editor’s note

Global Research is supportive of this statement

As we gather together in solidarity to express a feeling of mass injustice, we must not lose sight of what brought us together.

We write so that all people who feel wronged by the corporate forces of the world can know that we are your allies.

As one people, united, we acknowledge the reality: that the future of the human race requires the cooperation of its members; that our system must protect our rights, and upon corruption of that system, it is up to the individuals to protect their own rights, and those of their neighbors; that a democratic government derives its just power from the people, but corporations do not seek consent to extract wealth from the people and the Earth; and that no true democracy is attainable when the process is determined by economic power.

We come to you at a time when corporations, which place profit over people, self-interest over justice, and oppression over equality, run our governments.

We have peaceably assembled here, as is our right, to let these facts be known.

They have taken our houses through an illegal foreclosure process, despite not having the original mortgage.

They have taken bailouts from taxpayers with impunity, and continue to give Executives exorbitant bonuses. They have perpetuated inequality and discrimination in the workplace based on age, the color of one’s skin, sex, gender identity and sexual orientation.

They have poisoned the food supply through negligence, and undermined the farming system through monopolization.

They have profited off of the torture, confinement,and cruel treatment of countless animals, and actively hide these practices.

They have continuously sought to strip employees of the right to negotiate for better pay andsafer working conditions.

They have held students hostage with tens of thousands of dollars of debt on education, which is itself a human right.They have consistently outsourced labor and used that outsourcing as leverage to cut workers’healthcare and pay.

They have influenced the courts to achievethe same rights as people, with none of the culpability or responsibility.

They have spent millions of dollars on legal teams that look for ways to get them out of contracts in regards to health insurance.

They have sold our privacy as a commodity.They have used the military and police force to prevent freedom of the press.

They have deliberately declined to recall faulty products endangering lives in pursuit of profit.

They determine economic policy, despite the catastrophic failures their policies have produced and continue to produce.

They have donated large sums of money to politicians, who are responsible for regulating them.

They continue to block alternate forms of energy to keep us dependent on oil. They continue to block generic forms of medicine that could save people’s lives or provide relief in order to protect investments that have already turned a substantial profit.They have purposely covered up oil spills, accidents, faulty bookkeeping, and inactive ingredients in pursuit of profit.

They purposefully keep people misinformed and fearful through their control of the media.

They have accepted private contracts to murder prisoners even when presented with serious doubts about their guilt.They have perpetuated colonialism at home and abroad.

They have participated in the torture and murder of innocent civilians overseas.They continue to create weapons of mass destruction in order to receive government contracts.

To the people of the world, we, the New York City General Assembly occupying Wall Street in Liberty Square, urge you to assert your power.

Exercise your right to peaceably assemble; occupy public space; create a process to address the problems we face, and generate solutions accessible to everyone.

To all communities that take action and form groups in the spirit of direct democracy, we offer support, documentation, and all of the resources at our disposal. Join us and make your voices heard!

The statement issued from Zuccotti Park, by the General Assembly, at Occupy Wall Street.

The Logic of Occupy Wall Street for Canada

October 16th, 2011 by Justin Podur

The Occupy Wall Street Movement and the Occupy Together movements that are inspired by it actually have a simple premise: society shouldn’t be run for the unrestricted benefit of the wealthiest. The immediate grievance is the 2008 banking crisis, in which the U.S. banks engaged in fraudulent and criminal activity and were subsequently rewarded for doing so with trillions in government funds, while their victims reaped evictions and foreclosures.

“Step Down Lisa Raitt. Ur Killing Basic Human Rights” at the OccupyTO event in St. James Park, October 15, 2011. More pictures.

Canada did not have a crisis of the same severity, for a few reasons. Canada has a different banking system with a differently-regulated mortgage authority (although there are important similarities in the way the government takes risks and the private banks profit, and the Canadian system is far from invulnerable to crisis). The government is in the mortgage-backed securities business, but not in the totally unregulated way that the business ran in the United States. Social democratic politics are a little bit stronger in Canada than in the USA. Because the Conservatives were in a minority government at the time, the other parties were able to wring a stimulus out of the federal government that blunted the recession (the Bank of Canada also provided emergency funds and lowered interest rates to help the banks). But the overall problem, and direction of society, is the same, and the Occupy Together movement should find fertile ground in Canada.

Who Are the 1 Per Cent?

The slogan of Occupy Wall Street is “We are the 99%.” So, who are the 1 per cent in Canada? A 2010 report by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) by Armine Yalnizyan documents “The Rise of Canada’s Richest 1%.” There are 246,000 of them and their average income is $403,000. They hold 13.8 per cent of incomes, and pay some of the lowest taxes that the top 1 per cent have ever paid, historically.

To look within this 1 per cent (at a tiny fraction of it, 0.0002 per cent) economist Jim Stanford pulled some figures about Canadian billionaires from Canadian Business magazine for the Progressive Economics Forum. There are 61 Canadian billionaires, with a combined wealth of $162-billion (5 times the size of the federal government’s budget deficit). This is 6 per cent of all personal net worth in Canada – they own twice as much wealth as the bottom 17 million Canadians. Their wealth increased by 8.4 per cent last year (while average hourly earnings in Canada grew by 2.5 per cent). On average, they added $100-million per household, while the average household added $524.

Through a few historical accidents, Canada has been spared the most spectacular aspects of the U.S. financial crisis, but it is hard to dispute that Canadian society is organized to benefit private corporations, and especially finance. The economics of this favouritism has been documented extremely well over the years by the CCPA. A 2010 report by the CCPA’s Toby Sanger, for example, shows how the financial sector has had a 23 per cent profit margin during the past decade, compared to 7 per cent for non-financial industries. Sanger quotes “a leading bank analyst” who estimates that Canada’s top banks will have $40-billion in excess cash by the end of 2012, the sum of all federal and provincial deficits projected for 2012-13. Corporate income rates have been cut from an average of 42.6 per cent in 2000 to 28 per cent by 2011, with more tax cuts coming. The tax cuts in this sector, and the tax havens for the fraction of the 1 per cent, have helped bring about the revenue shortages that are then called “deficit crises,” which governments then use as pretexts for austerity budgets.

Extremes of Inequality

In a society based on layers of inequality, the 99 per cent is itself differentiated. Another 2010 CCPA report by Daniel Wilson and David McDonald reveals one of these inequalities. The median income for Canadians in 2006 was $27,097; for aboriginal peoples, $18,962, or 30 per cent lower. Scholar Grace-Edward Galabuzi has documented social exclusion based on race and gender.[1] And a recent report by the Conference Board of Canada shows that income inequality in Canada is growing faster even than in the United States.[2] All of these inequalities are within the 99 per cent, which highlights the need for a more equal society in general. The extremes of inequality are glaring, but these grinding inequalities are no picnic either.

One comparison, made frequently in the media, that seems to drive progressives crazy is the one between Occupy Wall Street and the Tea Party movement, which is based on the magical idea that society should be able to afford things (from roads to wars) without paying taxes. When Tea Party politics got to Canada they helped elect Toronto’s current mayor and helped give the Conservatives a boost to a majority government.[3] The Occupy Wall Street movement’s arrival in Canada could help discredit the austerity that the Conservative government will be putting forward in their next budget, and could help in resisting their plans to deepen inequalities and destroy what economic, social, and environmental fabric is left. •

Justin Podur is a Toronto-based writer. He teaches at York University and blogs at killingtrain.com.

Notes:

1. Grace-Edward Galabuzi. Canada’s Economic Apartheid: The Social Exclusion of Racialized Groups in the New Century. Toronto: Canadian Scholars’ Press, 2006.

2. Tavia Grant, “Income inequality rising quickly in Canada,” The Globe and Mail, September 13, 2011.

3. I don’t want to exaggerate this – Canada has always had these politics and there are “home-grown” explanations for these electoral results

Libya: The Humanitarian War. There is no evidence.

By Julien Tiel, Director. The Humanitarian War

“In the last analysis, every domination system depends on military force, but it always needs an ideological justification.”- Jean Bricmont

This document makes it possible to understand how international law and justice works, but mostly how its basic principles can be bypassed. The resolutions passed against Lybia are based on various allegations : notably on the statement claiming that Gaddafi had carried out jet attacks on his own people and engaged in a violent repression against an uprising, killing more than 6000 civilians. These allegations were spread before they could have been verified. Even though it was on the basis of this claim that the Lybian Jamahiriya government was suspended from the United Nations Human Rights Council, before being referred to the United Nations Security Council.

One of the main sources for the claim that Gaddafi was killing his own people is the Libyan League for Human Rights (LLHR), an organisation linked to the International Federation of Human Rights (FIDH). On the 21st of February 2011, the General-Secretary of the LLHR, Dr. Sliman Bouchuiguir, initiated a petition in collaboration with the organisation UN Watch and the National Endowment for Democracy. This petition was signed by more than 70 NGOs. Then a few days later, on the 25th of February, Dr. Sliman Bouchuiguir went to U.N. Human Rights Council in order to expose the allegations concerning the crimes of Gaddafi’s government. In July 2011 we went to Geneva to interview Dr. Sliman Bouchuiguir.

Part One
(9:51 minutes)

Part Two
(9:50 minutes)

Source: The Humanitarian War

50 anti-war essays, poems, short stories and literary excerpts

Compiled and edited by Rick Rozoff

Aeschylus: Ares, father of tears, mows the field of man

Conrad Aiken: Vast symphonic dance of death

Alain: Why is there war?

Richard Aldington: Pools and ponds of blood, the huge black dogs of hell

Amiel on war

Leonid Andreyev: The Red Laugh

Aristides on the two types of war: Bad and worse

Aristophanes: Rescuing Peace

Arrian: Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and the fate of conquerors

Henri Barbusse: Under Fire

Julien Benda: Military mysticism

Walter Benjamin: Self-alienated mankind experiences its own destruction as aesthetic pleasure

Ambrose Bierce: An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

James Boswell: On War

Randolph Bourne: The War and the Intellectuals

Georg Brandes: An Appeal Against Wholesale Murder

Bertolt Brecht: German Miserere

Karel Čapek: The War with the Newts

Thomas Carlyle: What blood-filled trenches, and contentious centuries, may still divide us!

Catullus: Appalled by fratricide, gods turned from man

Coleridge: All our dainty terms for fratricide

Joseph Conrad: Men go mad in protest against “peculiar sanity” of war

Homo homini lupus: William Cowper on war and man’s inhumanity to man

Stephen Crane: War Is Kind

Austin Dobson: Before Sedan

John Donne: War and misery are one thing

John Dos Passos: Three Soldiers

1862: Dostoevsky on the new world order

Theodore Dreiser and Smedley Butler: War is a Racket

Georges Duhamel: The Fleshmongers, War’s Winnowing Basket

Eça de Queiroz: Afghanistan

Paul Éluard: True law of men despite the misery and war

Erasmus: The Complaint of Peace

Euripides: The crown of War, the crown of Woe

William Faulkner: There is only the question: When will I be blown up?

Fichte: The inexorable law of universal peace

Henry Fielding: On the condign fate of Great Men and conquerors

Gustave Flaubert and George Sand: Monstrous conflicts of which we have no idea; warfare suppressed or civilization perishes

Anatole France on war

John Galsworthy, 1911: Air war last and worst hideous development of the black arts of warfare

Rasul Gamzatov: For women war is never over

Gabriel García Márquez: Five wars and seventeen military coups

Vsevolod Garshin: Four Days

André Gide: Transformation of a war supporter

William Godwin: Inventions of a barbarous age, deluging provinces with blood

Maxim Gorky on Romain Rolland, war and humanism

Remy de Gourmont: Getting drunk at the dirty cask of militarism

Robert Graves: Recalling the last war, preparing for the next

Thomas Gray: Clouds of carnage blot the sun; weave the crimson web of war

Jorge Guillén: The monsters have passed over

Nicolás Guillén: Come, dove, come tell me the tale of your woe

Thomas Hardy: All-Earth-gladdening Law of Peace, war’s apology wholly stultified

Frank Harris: Henri Barbusse and the war against war

Nathaniel Hawthorne on war: Drinking out of skulls till the Millennium

William Hazlitt: Systematic patrons of eternal war

Ernest Hemingway: Combat the murder that is war

José-Maria de Heredia: Drunk with dreams that brutal conquests bring

Herodotus: No one is fool enough to choose war instead of peace

Alexander Herzen: War and “international law”

Hesiod: Lamentable works of Ares lead to dank house of Hades

Nazim Hikmet: Sad kind of freedom, free to be an American air base

Friedrich Hölderlin: Celebration of Peace

William Dean Howells: Spanish Prisoners of War

Victor Hugo: The face of Cain, hunters of men, sublime cutthroats

Leigh Hunt: Captain Sword and Captain Pen

Leigh Hunt: Some Remarks On War And Military Statesmen

Aldous Huxley: Rhetorical devices used to conceal fundamental absurdity and monstrosity of war

Avetik Issahakian: Eternal fabricators of war, erecting pyramids with a myriad skulls

William James: The Moral Equivalent of War

Samuel Johnson on war

Immanuel Kant: Prescription for perpetual peace

Nikos Kazantzakis: Francis of Assisi

Keats: Days innocent of scathing war

Ellen Key: Overcoming the madness of a world at war

Karl Kraus: The Last Days of Mankind

La Bruyère on the lust for war

Selma Lagerlöf: The Fifth Commandment. The Great Beast is War.

Sidney Lanier: Death in Eden

D.H. Lawrence: All modern militarism is foul

Halldór Laxness: In war there is no cause except the cause of war. A bitter disappointment when it turned out they could defend themselves

Richard Le Gallienne: The Illusion of War

Stephen Leacock: The war mania of middle age and embonpoint

Sinclair Lewis: It Can(‘t) Happen Here

Li Bai: Nefarious War

Livy: On the political utility of starting unprovoked wars

Jack London: War

Lucan: Over all the world you are victorious and your soldiers die

Lucian: War propaganda and its hyperbole

Bernard Mandeville: How to induce men to kill and die

Heinrich Mann: Mission of letters in a world in rubble with 10 million corpses underground

Thomas Mann: Dirge for a homeland wasted by war

José Martí: Oscar Wilde on war and aesthetics

Roger Martin du Gard: From Nobel Prize in Literature speech

Edgar Lee Masters: The Philippine Conquest

Herman Melville: Trophies of Peace

H.L. Mencken: New wars will bring about an unparalleled butchery of men

George Meredith: On the Danger of War

Eugenio Montale: Poetry in an era of nuclear weapons and Doomsday atmosphere

William Morris: Protecting the strong from the weak, selling each other weapons to kill their own countrymen

Nikolai Nekrasov: In War

Pablo Neruda: Bandits with planes, jackals that the jackals would despise

Alfred Noyes: The Wine Press

Vladimir Odoevsky: City without a name, system with one

Kenzaburō Ōe: Categorical imperative to renounce war forever

Wilfred Owen: Arms and the Boy and Disabled

Pascal on war: An assassin if he kills in his own country, a hero if in another

Charles Péguy: Cursed be war, cursed of God

Pindar: The arts versus war

Harold Pinter: Art, Truth and Politics

Plutarch: On war and its opponents

Propertius: Elegy on war

Marcel Proust: Every day war is declared anew

Salvatore Quasimodo: In every country a cultural tradition opposes war

Arthur Rimbaud: Evil

Yannis Ritsos: Peace

Romain Rolland: Above The Battle

Romain Rolland: Ara Pacis and Ave, Caesar, Morituri Te Salutant

Ronsard: Far away from Europe and far from its wars

Carl Sandburg: Ready to Kill

George Santayana on war and militarism

Albert Schweitzer: On nuclear weapons in NATO’s hands

Senancour: Lottery of war amid heaps of the dead

Seneca on war: Deeds punished by death when committed by individuals praised when carried out by generals

Militarist myopia: George Bernard Shaw’s Common Sense About the War

Juvenilia: Percy Bysshe Shelley on war

Sophocles: War the destroyer

Robert Southey: The Battle of Blenheim

Wole Soyinka: Africa victim, never perpetrator, of theo/ideological wars

Stephen Spender: Ultima Ratio Regum

Stendhal and Byron: Military leprosy; fronts of brass and feet of clay

Jonathan Swift on war

Theocritus: May spiders spin their slender webs over weapons of war

Thucydides: Admonitions against war

Tibullus: War is a crime perpetrated by hearts hardened like weapons

Alexei Tolstoy: The one incontestable result was dead bodies

Leo Tolstoy: Two Wars and Carthago Delenda Est

Kurt Tucholsky: The White Spots

Mark Twain: The War Prayer

Lesya Ukrainka: Do you understand that word called war?

Paul Vaillant-Couturier: The Song of Craonne

Paul Valéry on global conflicts, Europe governed by American commission

Virgil: Age of peace

Voltaire: War

Franz Werfel: To a Lark in War-Time

Oscar Wilde: Antidote to war

Xenophon: Socrates’ war sophistry; civil crimes are martial virtues

Edward Young: Draw the murd’ring sword to give mankind a single lord

Arnold Zweig: Education Before Verdun

Stefan Zweig: The fear of opposing military hysteria

Petraeus’s CIA Fuels Iran Murder Plot

October 15th, 2011 by Ray McGovern

Washington Post columnist David Ignatius, in his accustomed role as unofficial surrogate CIA spokesman, has thrown light on how the CIA under its new director, David Petraeus, helped craft the screenplay for this week’s White House spy feature: the Iranian-American-used-car-salesman-Mexican-drug-cartel plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the U.S.

In Thursday’s column, Ignatius notes that, initially, White House and Justice Department officials found the story “implausible.” It was. But the Petraeus team soon leapt to the rescue, reflecting the four-star-general-turned-intelligence-chief’s deep-seated animus toward Iran.

Before Ignatius’s article, I had seen no one allude to the fact that much about this crime-stopper tale had come from the CIA. In public, the FBI had taken the lead role, presumably because the key informant inside a Mexican drug cartel worked for U.S. law enforcement via the Drug Enforcement Administration.

However, according to Ignatius, “One big reason [top U.S. officials became convinced the plot was real] is that CIA and other intelligence agencies gathered information corroborating the informant’s juicy allegations and showing that the plot had support from the top leadership of the elite Quds Force of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, the covert action arm of the Iranian government.”

Ignatius adds that, “It was this intelligence collected in Iran” that swung the balance, but he offers no example of what that intelligence was. He only mentions a recorded telephone call on Oct. 4 between Iranian-American cars salesman Mansour Arbabsiar and his supposed contact in Iran, Gholam Shakuri, allegedly an official in Iran’s Quds spy agency.

The call is recounted in the FBI affidavit submitted in support of the criminal charges against Arbabsiar, who is now in U.S. custody, and Shakuri, who is not. But the snippets of that conversation are unclear, discussing what on the surface appears to be a “Chevrolet” car purchase, but which the FBI asserts is code for killing the Saudi ambassador.

Without explaining what other evidence the CIA might have, Ignatius tries to further strengthen the case by knocking down some of the obvious problems with the allegations, such as “why the Iranians would undertake such a risky operation, and with such embarrassingly poor tradecraft.”

“But why the use of Mexican drug cartels?” asks Ignatius rhetorically, before adding dutifully: “U.S. officials say that isn’t as implausible as it sounds.”

But it IS as implausible as it sounds, says every professional intelligence officer I have talked with since the “plot” was somberly announced on Tuesday.

The Old CIA Pros

There used to be real pros in the CIA’s operations directorate. One — Ray Close, a longtime CIA Arab specialist and former Chief of Station in Saudi Arabia — told me on Wednesday that we ought to ask ourselves a very simple question:

“If you were an Iranian undercover operative who was under instructions to hire a killer to assassinate the Saudi Arabian ambassador in Washington, D.C., why in HELL would you consider it necessary to explain to a presumed Mexican [expletive deleted] that this murder was planned and would be paid for by a secret organization in Iran?

“Whoever concocted this tale wanted the ‘plot’ exposed … to precipitate a major crisis in relations between Iran and the United States. Which other government in the Middle East would like nothing better than to see those relations take a big step toward military confrontation?”

If you hesitate in answering, you have not been paying attention. Many have addressed this issue. My last stab at throwing light on the Israel/Iran/U.S. nexus appeared ten days ago in “Israel’s Window to Bomb Iran.”

Another point on the implausibility meter is: What are the odds that Iran’s Quds force would plan an unprecedented attack in the United States, that this crack intelligence agency would trust the operation to a used-car salesman with little or no training in spycraft, that he would turn to his one contact in a Mexican drug cartel who happens to be a DEA informant, and that upon capture the car salesman would immediately confess and implicate senior Iranian officials?

Wouldn’t it make more sense to suspect that Arbabsiar might be a double-agent, recruited by some third-party intelligence agency to arrange some shady business deal regarding black-market automobiles, get some ambiguous comments over the phone from an Iranian operative, and then hand the plot to the U.S. government on a silver platter – as a way to heighten tensions between Washington and Teheran?

That said, there are times when even professional spy agencies behave like amateurs. And there’s no doubt that the Iranians – like the Israelis, the Saudis and the Americans – can and do carry out assassinations and kidnappings in this brave new world of ours.

Remember, for instance, the case of Islamic cleric Osama Moustafa Hassan Nasr, also known as Abu Omar, who was abducted off the streets of Milan, Italy, on Feb. 17, 2003, and then flown from a U.S. air base to Egypt where he was imprisoned and tortured for a year.

In 2009, Italian prosecutors convicted 23 Americans, mostly CIA operatives, in absentia for the kidnapping after reconstructing the disappearance through their unencrypted cell phone records and their credit card bills at luxury hotels in Milan.

Then, there was the suspected Mossad assassination of Hamas leader Mahmoud al-Mabhouh at a hotel in Dubai on Jan. 19, 2010, with the hit men seen on hotel video cameras strolling around in tennis outfits and creating an international furor over their use of forged Irish, British, German and French passports.

So one cannot completely rule out that there may conceivably be some substance to the alleged Iranian plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador.

And beyond the regional animosities between Saudi Arabia and Iran, there could be a motive – although it has been absent from American press accounts – i.e. retaliation for the assassinations of senior Iranian nuclear scientists and generals over the last couple of years within Iran itself.

But there has been close to zero real evidence coming from the main source of information — officials of the Justice Department, which like the rest of the U.S. government has long since forfeited much claim to credibility.

Petraeus’s ‘Intelligence’ on Iran

The public record also shows that former Gen. Petraeus has long been eager to please the neoconservatives in Washington and their friends in Israel by creating “intelligence” to portray Iran and other target countries in the worst light.

One strange but instructive example comes to mind, a studied, if disingenuous, effort to blame all the troubles in southern Iraq on the “malignant” influence of Iran.

On April 25, 2008, Joint Chiefs Chairman, Adm. Mike Mullen, told reporters that Gen. Petraeus in Baghdad would give a briefing “in the next couple of weeks” providing detailed evidence of “just how far Iran is reaching into Iraq to foment instability.” Petraeus’s staff alerted U.S. media to a major news event in which captured Iranian arms in Karbala would be displayed and then destroyed.

Oops. Small problem. When American munitions experts went to Karbala to inspect the alleged cache of Iranian weapons, they found nothing that could be credibly linked to Iran.

At that point, adding insult to injury, the Iraqis announced that Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki had formed his own Cabinet committee to investigate the U.S. claims and attempt to “find tangible information and not information based on speculation.” Ouch!

The Teflon-clad Petraeus escaped embarrassment, as the David Ignatiuses of the Fawning Corporate Media (FCM) conveniently forgot all about the promised-then-canceled briefing. U.S. media suppression of this telling episode is just one example of how difficult it is to get unbiased, accurate information on touchy subjects like Iran into the FCM.

As for Attorney General Eric Holder and President Barack Obama, some adult adviser should tell them to quit giving hypocrisy a bad name with their righteous indignation over the thought that no civilized nation would conduct cross-border assassinations.

The Obama administration, like its predecessor, has been dispatching armed drones to distant corners of the globe to kill Islamic militants, including recently U.S. citizen Anwar al-Awlaki for the alleged crime of encouraging violence against Americans.

Holder and Obama have refused to release the Justice Department’s legal justification for the targeted murder of al-Awlaki whose “due process” amounted to the President putting al-Awlaki’s name on a secret “kill-or-capture” list.

Holder and Obama have also refused to take meaningful action to hold officials of the Bush administration accountable for war crimes even though President George W. Bush has publicly acknowledged authorizing waterboarding and other brutal techniques long regarded as acts of torture.

Who can take at face value the sanctimonious words of an attorney general like Holder who has acquiesced in condoning egregious violations of the Bill of Rights, the U.S. criminal code, and international law — like the International Convention Against Torture?

Were shame not in such short supply in Official Washington these days, one would be amazed that Holder could keep a straight face, accusing these alleged Iranian perpetrators of “violating an international convention.”

America’s Founders would hold in contempt the Holders and the faux-legal types doing his bidding. The behavior of the past two administrations has been more reminiscent of George III and his sycophants than of James Madison, George Mason, John Jay and George Washington, who gave us the rich legacy of a Constitution, which created a system based on laws not men.

That Constitution and its Bill of Rights have become endangered species at the hands of the craven poachers at “Justice.” No less craven are the functionaries leading today’s CIA.

What to Watch For

If Petraeus finds it useful politically to conjure up more “evidence” of nefarious Iranian behavior in Iraq and/or Afghanistan, Lebanon or Syria, he will.  And if he claims to see signs of ominous Iranian intentions regarding nuclear weapons, watch out.

Honest CIA analysts, like the ones who concluded that Iran had stopped working on a nuclear weapon in late 2003 and had not resumed that work, are in short supply, and most have families to support and mortgages to pay.

Petraeus is quite capable of marginalizing them, or even forcing them to quit. I have watched this happen to a number of intelligence officials under a few of Petraeus’s predecessors.

More malleable careerists can be found in any organization, and promoted, so long as they are willing to tell more ominous — if disingenuous — stories that may make more sense to the average American than the latest tale of the Iranian-American-used-car-salesman-Mexican-drug-cartel-plot.

This can get very dangerous in a hurry. Israel’s leaders would require but the flimsiest of nihil obstat to encourage them to provoke hostilities with Iran. Netanyahu and his colleagues would expect the Obamas, Holders, and Petraeuses of this world to be willing to “fix the intelligence and facts” (à la Iraq) to “justify” such an attack.

The Israeli leaders would risk sucking the United States into the kind of war with Iran that, short of a massive commitment of resources or a few tactical nuclear weapons, the U.S. and Israel could almost surely not win. It would be the kind of war that would make Iraq and Afghanistan look like minor skirmishes.

C’è un movimento di protesta popolare che si diffonde in tutta l’America, che comprende persone di ogni ceto sociale, di tutte le età, consapevoli della necessità di un cambiamento sociale e impegnate a invertire il corso. La base di questo movimento costituisce una risposta all’”agenda di Wall Street” di frodi e di manipolazioni finanziarie che sono servite a innescare la disoccupazione e la povertà in tutto il paese.

Questo movimento costituisce, nella sua forma attuale, uno strumento di riforma significativa e di cambiamento sociale in America? Qual è la struttura organizzativa del movimento? Chi sono i suoi principali artefici? Il movimento o segmenti di questo movimento sono stati cooptati?

Questa è una domanda importante, che deve essere affrontata da coloro che fanno parte del Movimento ‘Occupare Wall Street’ così come da coloro che, in tutta l’America, sostengono la democrazia reale.

Introduzione

Storicamente, i movimenti sociali progressisti sono stati infiltrati, i loro leader cooptati e manipolati, attraverso il finanziamento aziendale di organizzazioni non governative, sindacati e partiti politici. Lo scopo ultimo del “finanziamento del dissenso” è impedire al movimento di protesta di contestare la legittimità delle élite economiche:


Con una amara ironia, una parte dei guadagni fraudolenti finanziari di Wall Street, negli ultimi anni, sono stati riciclati nelle fondazioni esenti da tasse e nella beneficenza delle élite. Questi disonesti guadagni finanziari non sono stati utilizzati solo per acquistare i politici, ma sono anche stati convogliati a ONG, istituti di ricerca, centri sociali, gruppi religiosi, ambientalisti, media alternativi e per i diritti umani, ecc.



L’obiettivo interno è “fabbricare il dissenso” e stabilire i confini di una opposizione “politicamente corretta”. A sua volta, molte ONG sono infiltrate da informatori che spesso agiscono per conto di agenzie di intelligence occidentali. Inoltre, un segmento sempre più ampio dei media progressisti e dei notiziari alternativi su internet, è diventato dipendente dai finanziamenti di fondazioni private ed enti di beneficenza.


L’obiettivo delle élite aziendali è quello di frammentare il movimento popolare in un vasto mosaico “fai da te”.”
(Vedi Michel Chossudovsky, Manufacturing Dissent: the Anti-globalization Movement is Funded by the Corporate Elites, Global Research, 20 settembre 2010)

“Produrre il Dissenso”

Allo stesso tempo, “il dissenso fabbricato” è intento a promuovere divisioni politiche e sociali (ad esempio all’interno e tra i partiti politici e i movimenti sociali). A sua volta, s’incoraggia la creazione di fazioni all’interno di ogni organizzazione.

Per quanto riguarda il movimento anti-globalizzazione, questo processo di divisione e frammentazione risale ai primi giorni del Forum Sociale Mondiale. (Vedasi Michel Chossudovsky, Manufacturing Dissent: The Anti-globalization Movement is Funded by the Corporate Elites, Global Research, 20 settembre 2010)
La maggior parte delle organizzazioni progressiste del periodo post-II Guerra Mondiale, compreso la “sinistra” ufficiale europea , nel corso degli ultimi 30 anni, è stata trasformata e rimodulata. Il sistema del “libero mercato” (neoliberismo) è il consenso della “sinistra”. Questo vale, tra gli altri, per il Partito socialista in Francia, il partito laburista in Gran Bretagna, i socialdemocratici in Germania, per non parlare del partito dei Verdi in Francia e Germania.

Negli Stati Uniti, il sistema bipartisan non è il risultato dell’interazione della politica dei partiti al Congresso. Una manciata di potenti gruppi di lobby aziendali controlla sia i repubblicani che i democratici. Il “consenso bi-partisan” è stabilito dalle élites che operano dietro le quinte. E’ applicata dai principali gruppi di lobby aziendali, che esercitano una morsa su entrambi i maggiori partiti politici. A sua volta, i leader della AFL-CIO sono stati cooptati dall’establishment aziendale contro la base del movimento operaio degli Stati Uniti. I leader delle organizzazioni dei lavoratori partecipano alle riunioni annuali del Forum economico mondiale di Davos (WEF). Collaborano con la Business Roundtable. Ma al tempo stesso, la base del movimento operaio degli Stati Uniti ha cercato di apportare delle modifiche organizzative che contribuiscano a democratizzare le leadership individuali dei sindacati. Le élite promuoveranno un “dissenso rituale” con un alto profilo sui media, con il supporto delle reti televisive, dei notiziari aziendali così come di internet.

Le élite economiche – che controllano grandi fondazioni – supervisionano anche il finanziamento di numerose organizzazioni della società civile, che storicamente sono state coinvolte nel movimento di protesta contro l’ordine stabilito economico e sociale. I programmi di molte organizzazioni non governative (comprese quelle coinvolte nel movimento ‘Occupare Wall Street‘) si basano molto sui finanziamenti di fondazioni private tra cui le fondazioni Tides, Ford, Rockefeller, MacArthur, tra le altre.

Storicamente, il movimento anti-globalizzazione che è emerso negli anni ’90 si è opposto a Wall Street e ai giganti del petrolio del Texas, controllati da Rockefeller, e altri. Eppure, le fondazioni e le associazioni di beneficenza di Rockefeller, Ford et altri, hanno, nel corso degli anni, generosamente finanziato reti progressiste anti-capitaliste e ambientaliste (opposte a Big Oil), al fine di sorvegliare e, in ultima analisi, l’elaborarne le varie attività.

“Rivoluzioni colorate”

Nel corso dell’ultimo decennio, “rivoluzioni colorate” sono emerse in diversi paesi. Le “rivoluzioni colorate” sono operazioni di intelligence degli Stati Uniti che consistono nel sostenere segretamente i movimenti di protesta, al fine di innescare “cambi di regime” sotto la bandiera di un movimento pro-democrazia.

Le “rivoluzioni colorate” sono supportate dal National Endowment for Democracy, dall’International Republican Institute e dalla Freedom House, tra gli altri. L’obiettivo di una “rivoluzione colorata” è quella di fomentare disordini sociali e utilizzare il movimento di protesta per rovesciare il governo esistente. L’obiettivo finale della politica estera è quella di instaurare un compiacente governo filo-USA (o “governo fantoccio“).

“La primavera araba”

Nell’Egitto della “primavera araba“, le principali organizzazioni della società civile, comprese Kifaya (Basta) e il Movimento Giovanile 6 aprile, non erano supportati solo da fondazioni degli Stati Uniti, hanno anche avuto l’avallo del Dipartimento di Stato americano. (Per i dettagli si veda Michel Chossudovsky, Il movimento di protesta in Egitto: “I dittatori” non dettano, obbediscono agli ordini, Global Research, 29 gennaio 2011)

Dissidenti egiziani, ricercatori della Freedom House a Washington DC (2008)

Con amara ironia, Washington ha sostenuto la dittatura di Mubarak, comprese le sue atrocità, ma ha anche sostenuto e finanziato i suoi detrattori, … sotto gli auspici della Freedom House, i dissidenti e gli oppositori egiziani di Hosni Mubarak (vedi sopra) sono stati ricevuti nel maggio 2008 da Condoleezza Rice … e alla Casa Bianca dal consigliere per la Sicurezza Nazionale. Stephen Hadley.” (Si veda Michel Chossudovsky, Il movimento di protesta in Egitto: “I dittatori” non dettano, obbediscono agli ordini, Global Research, 29 gennaio 2011)

L’anno successivo (maggio 2009), una delegazione di dissidenti egiziani è stata ricevuta dalla segretaria di Stato Hillary Clinton (Vedi sotto)

La segretaria di Stato USA, Hillary Clinton parla con gli “attivisti egiziani che promuovono la libertà e la democrazia“, prima delle riunioni del Dipartimento di Stato a Washington DC, il 28 maggio 2009.
Confrontate le due immagini. Parte della delegazione del 2008 che incontrava Condoleeza Rice, fa parte della delegazione del 2009 che incontra Hillary Clinton.

OTPOR e il Centro per l’applicazione dell’azione non violenta e strategie (CANVAS)

I dissidenti egiziani del Movimento Giovanile 6 aprile che, per diversi anni, erano in collegamento permanente con l’ambasciata USA al Cairo, sono stati addestrati dal Centro Serbo per l’applicazione dell’azione non violenta e strategie (CANVAS), una società di consulenza e formazione specializzata in “rivoluzioni” sostenuta da FH e dalla NED. CANVAS è stata fondata nel 2003 da OTPOR, un’organizzazione serba sostenuta dalla CIA che ha svolto un ruolo centrale nella caduta di Slobodan Milosevic, in seguito ai bombardamenti NATO del 1999 sulla Jugoslavia. Appena due mesi dopo la fine dei bombardamenti della Jugoslavia 1999, OTPOR ha svolto un ruolo centrale nell’installazione di un governo “ad interim” in Serbia, promosso da USA-NATO. Questi sviluppi hanno anche aperto la strada verso la secessione del Montenegro dalla Jugoslavia, l’istituzione della base militare statunitense Bondsteel e alla fine la formazione di uno stato mafioso in Kosovo.

Nell’agosto 1999, la CIA avrebbe creato un programma di formazione per OTPOR in Bulgaria, nella capitale Sofia:


Nell’estate del 1999, il capo della CIA George Tenet, apriva un ufficio a Sofia, in Bulgaria per “educare” l’opposizione serba. Lo scorso 28 agosto [2000], la BBC ha confermato che uno corso speciale di 10 giorni era stato seguoto dai militanti di Otpor, anche a Sofia. Il programma della CIA è un programma in fasi successive. Nella fase iniziale, lusingano il patriottismo e lo spirito di indipendenza dei serbi, in agendo come se rispettassero queste qualità. Ma dopo aver seminato confusione e spezzata l’unità del Paese, la CIA e la NATO farebbero molto di più.”

(Gerard Mugemangano e Michel Collon, “To be partly controlled by the CIA ? That doesn’t bother me much“, Interview with two activists of the Otpor student movement, International Action Center (IAC), To be partly controlled by the CIA? 6 Ottobre 2000. Vedasi anche “CIA is tutoring Serbian group, Otpor“, The Monitor, Sofia, tradotto da Blagovesta Doncheva, Emperors Clothes, 8 settembre 2000)

“Il business della rivoluzione”


Il Centro per l’applicazione dell’azione non violenta e strategie (CANVAS) di OTPOR, si descrive come “una rete internazionale di formatori e consulenti” coinvolti nel “Il business della rivoluzione“. Finanziato dal National Endowment for Democracy (NED), costituisce un paravento nella consulenza e formazione dei gruppi di opposizione sponsorizzati dagli Stati Uniti in oltre 40 paesi.

OTPOR ha giocato un ruolo chiave in Egitto.

Egitto, Tahir Square: quello che sembrava essere un processo di democratizzazione spontaneo, era una operazione di intelligence accuratamente pianificata. Vedasi il video qui sotto.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lpXbA6yZY-8

Egitto. Il logo del Movimento 6 aprile

Il “Movimento Giovanile 6 aprile” dell’Egitto, ha lo stesso pugno come logo; fonte Infowars. Sia il Movimento 6 aprile che Kifaya (Basta!) hanno ricevuto una formazione preventiva dal CANVAS a Belgrado, “nelle strategie per una rivoluzione non violenta”. “Secondo Stratfor, la tattica utilizzata dal Movimento 6 aprile e da Kifaya “deriva direttamente dal curriculum formativo di CANVAS.” (Citato in Tina Rosenberg, Revolution U, Foreign Policy, 16 febbraio 2011)
Vale la pena notare la somiglianza dei loghi e dei nomi coinvolti nelle “rivoluzioni colorate” sponsorizzate da CANVAS-OTPOR. Il Movimento Giovanile 6 Aprile in Egitto ha usato il pugno chiuso come suo logo, Kifaya (“Basta!”) ha lo stesso nome del movimento di protesta giovanile supportato da OTPOR in Georgia, che è stato chiamato Kmara! (“Basta!”). Entrambi i gruppi sono stati formati da CANVAS.

Kmara (“Basta!”) della Georgia

Il ruolo di CANVAS-OTPOR nel Movimento ‘Occupare Wall Street’


CANVAS-OPTOR è attualmente coinvolto nel Movimento ‘Occupare Wall Street’ (#OWS). Diverse importanti organizzazioni attualmente coinvolte con Occupare Wall Street (# OWS) il movimento ha svolto un ruolo significativo nella “primavera araba“. Significativo, “Anonymous“, il social media del gruppo “hacktivista“, è coinvolto negli attacchi informatici aisiti web del governo egiziano, al culmine della “primavera araba“.

(http://anonops.blogspot.com, vedi anche http://anonnews.org/)

Nel maggio 2011, “Anonymous” ha condotto attacchi informatici contro l’Iran e, lo scorso agosto, ha condotto simili attacchi informatici diretti contro il Ministero della Difesa siriano. Questi attacchi informatici sono stati intrapresi a sostegno dell’”opposizione” in esilio siriana, che è in gran parte integrata dagli islamisti. (Vedasi Syrian Ministry Of Defense Website Hacked By ‘Anonymous’, Huffington Post, 8 agosto 2011). Le azioni di “Anonymous” in Siria e Iran sono coerenti con il quadro delle “rivoluzioni colorate“. Cercano di demonizzare il regime politico e creare instabilità politica. (Per l’analisi sulle opposizioni siriane, si veda Michel Chossudovsky, SIRIA: Chi c’è dietro il movimento di protesta? Fabbricare un pretesto per un “intervento umanitario” USA-NATO, Global Research, 3 maggio 2011)

Sia CANVAS che Anonymous sono ora attivamente coinvolti nel Movimento ‘Occupare Wall Street’. Il ruolo preciso di CANVAS nel Movimento ‘Occupare Wall Street’ resta da valutare. Ivan Marovic, uno dei leader di CANVAS si è recentemente rivolto al movimento di protesta ‘Occupare Wall Street‘, a New York City. Ascoltate attentamente il suo discorso. (Tenete a mente che la sua organizzazione CANVAS è supportata dal NED).

Clicca sul link qui sotto per ascoltare Ivan Marovic che parla a ‘Occupare Wall Street’, a New York
Ivan Marovic addresses Occupy Wall Street http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LkM3BBtc7N0

Marovic riconosceva, in una precedente dichiarazione, che non c’è nulla di spontaneo nella progettazione di un “evento rivoluzionario“: “Sembra che le persone siano appena andate in strada. Ma è il risultato di mesi o anni di preparazione. E’ molto noioso fino ad un certo punto, quando potete organizzare manifestazioni di massa o scioperi. Se è attentamente pianificata fin dall’inizio, tutto finisce nel giro di settimane“. (Citato in Tina Rosenberg, Revolution U, Foreign Policy, 16 febbraio 2011)

Questa dichiarazione del portavoce di OTPOR Ivan Marovic, suggerisce che i movimenti di protesta nel mondo arabo non si sono diffuso spontaneamente da un paese all’altro, come ritratto dai media occidentali. I movimenti di protesta nazionale sono stati pianificati con largo anticipo. La cronologia e la sequenza di questi movimenti di protesta nazionali, sono stati pure previsti. Allo stesso modo, la dichiarazione di Marovic suggerisce anche che il movimento ‘Occupare Wall Street‘ sia anch’esso oggetto di una attenta avanzata pianificazione, da parte un certo numero di organizzazioni chiave, tatticamente e strategicamente.

Vale la pena notare che una delle tattiche di OTPOR è “non cercare di evitare gli arresti“, ma piuttosto a “provocarli e usarli a vantaggio del movimento” come strategia di pubbliche relazioni. (Ibid)

Il Pugno serrato di Occupare Wall Street: http://occupywallst.org
PORA; è tempo!
KMARA; Kmara Basta!
OBORONA; Difesa
KELKEL; Nuova epoca

http://globalresearch.ca/PrintArticle.php?articleId=27053

Traduzione di Alessandro Lattanzio
http://sitoaurora.altervista.org/home.htm
http://aurorasito.wordpress.com

Global Research Editor’s Note

The following report by the Daily Mail confirms that NATO by targetting civilians is responsible for extsnsive war crimes in Libya. The pictures published by this Daily Mail report confirm what the Daily Mail fails to mention: the extensive criminal bombing of a country of 6 million people under an alleged humanitarian mandate.

Buildings are crumbling, heavily armed fighters stand on every street corner and snipers lurk on rooftops – welcome to Sirte.

The home city of Libya’s fugitive leader Muammar Gaddafi is one of the last area’s not to have succumbed to the militia army of the National Transitional Council.

These astonishing photographs show how the rebel fighters, as the NTC was previously dubbed, are slowly tightening their strangle-hold around the city – with pro-Gaddafi fighters now only occupying a tiny section.

Waterlogged: Libyan rebel fighters fire at pro-Gaddafi forces as the battle for Sirte enters its final stages

Waterlogged: Libyan rebel fighters fire at pro-Gaddafi forces as the battle for Sirte enters its final stages

Libyan rebels flash victory signs during fighting in the city of Sirte

An anti-Gaddafi fighter rides on a bicycle to get to the front line

Candid: These photographs show the rebel fighters taking some time out from battle, some carrying a guitar while others ride their bicycles
 

Deserted: The denuded buildings of Sirte will have to be demolished after they were pounded with heavy artillery for weeks

Deserted: The denuded buildings of Sirte will have to be demolished after they were pounded with heavy artillery for weeks

The council today brought more tanks into the city to try to smash the last pocket of resistance in a bid to end the chaos which has now lasted several weeks.
  It sees the capture of the city as key to building a democractic government – as it says the process cannot begin until Sirte has fallen. NTC commanders said Gaddafi’s die-hard loyalists now only control a residential area which measures around one mile squared.
 
They also said that the biggest obstacle to taking the town had been Gaddafi’s snipers hiding in the buildings. To counter this they were using tanks to hit the buildings from close range, which often dislodged them. Gaddafi himself is believed to be hiding somewhere in the vast Libyan desert.
 

More…

 
A senior NTC official also denied reports by other officials in the new government that Gaddafi’s son Motassim had been captured in Sirte.  
 
Surrounded now on all sides, Gaddafi’s remaining forces in his home city seem to have no hope of winning the battle but are still fighting on, inflicting dozens of casualties with rocket-propelled grenades, mortars and small arms.  
 

Shattered skyline: Smoke billows over Sirte as the rebels assault continued to pound the centre of the city

Shattered skyline: Smoke billows over Sirte as the rebels assault continued to pound the centre of the city

Battle of Sirte

Battle of Sirte

Battle of Sirte: Buildings lie in ruins (left) as war rages on in the flooded streets (right)
 

Taking cover: Anti-Gaddafi fighters crouch low behind one of their vehicles as heavy gunfire rains over their heads during the battle

Taking cover: Anti-Gaddafi fighters crouch low behind one of their vehicles as heavy gunfire rains over their heads during the battle

One field hospital received two NTC dead and 23 wounded yesterday. One of the dead men had been hit while taking food up to the fighters on the front line, doctors said.  
  Another NTC commander said Gaddafi’s besieged forces were no longer using heavier weapons and appeared to have lost their cohesion as a fighting force.  
 
‘We’ve noticed now they are fighting every man for himself,’ said Baloun Al Sharie, a field commander. ‘We tried to tell them it’s enough and to give themselves up, but they would not.’
 
NTC officers said Gaddafi loyalists feared reprisals if they give themselves up.
 

Time out: Rebel fighters make the most of some down time by having a little nap

Time out: Rebel fighters make the most of some down time by having a little nap

Battle of Sirte

Battle of Sirte

Action men: Battle is still raging in Gaddafi’s home city of Sirte, with rebels taking to the streets with powerful weapons
 

Attack: A tank of Libyan rebels fire at pro-Gaddafi fighters during the battle of Sirte

Attack: A tank of Libyan rebels fire at pro-Gaddafi fighters during the battle of Sirte

Some captured fighters said they have been roughed up by NTC forces.
 
Amnesty International issued a report on Wednesday saying Libya’s new rulers were in danger of repeating human rights abuses commonplace during Gaddafi’s rule.
 
The NTC said it would look into the report.   
 
Close to the centre of the fighting in Sirte, government forces found 25 corpses wrapped in plastic sheets. They accused Gaddafi militias of carrying out execution-style killings.
 

War: Libyan rebels fire rockets at pro-Gaddafi fighters in the fugitive leader's home city of Sirte

War: Libyan rebels fire rockets at pro-Gaddafi fighters in the fugitive leader’s home city of Sirte

Battle of Sirte

Battle of Sirte

Is victory close? Rebel fighters flash the ‘Victory’ sign at photographers during the Battle of Sirte
 

Combat: A Libyan rebel carries the body of a dead comrade as the war between pro- and anti-Gaddafi forces rumbles on

Combat: A Libyan rebel carries the body of a dead comrade as the war between pro- and anti-Gaddafi forces rumbles on

As the battle for Libya draws towards what the NTC and NATO hope will be a close, both the new government and the Western alliance which helped topple Gaddafi are looking towards a return to normality.  
 
The provisional Libyan government and NATO signed an agreement yesterday to immediately open air corridors for international civilian flights from Benghazi, and domestic flights between the second city and Tripoli and Misrata.  
 
This is one of the first step toward NATO lifting its no-fly zone over Libya imposed after Gaddafi began a military assault on civilians protesting his one-man rule.

Confident: Rebel fighters flash the 'Victory' sign amidst the battle

Confident: Rebel fighters flash the ‘Victory’ sign amidst the battle

Taking cover: A Libyan rebel runs to protect himself from incoming sniper fire during the Battle of Sirte

Taking cover: A Libyan rebel runs to protect himself from incoming sniper fire during the Battle of Sirte

 

Libya: NATO Supported Rebel Forces in Retreat

October 15th, 2011 by Global Research

NTC forces, Gaddafi supporters clash in Libyan capital

-As the NTC saw with surprise the first fierce clashes in Tripoli in over 50 days with Gaddafi supporters after their capture of the Libyan capital, its fighters were also forced to retreat from Sirte, one of a couple of Gaddafi strongholds, the previous day due to strong resistance.

TRIPOLI: Forces of the ruling National Transitional Council (NTC) and some supporters of fallen leader Muammar Gaddafi exchanged gunfire in the Abu Salim neighborhood in southern Tripoli on Friday, the first in over 50 days, witnesses said.

Continuous gunshots were heard in the Libyan capital on Friday afternoon, after a number of pro-Gaddafi loyalists, who were armed, tried to raise a Gaddafi-era green national flag in the area, witnesses near Abu Salim told Xinhua.

Some 40 supporters of the previous regime then fired into the sky with machine guns and roamed in the streets, chanting pro-Gaddafi slogans.

Security checkpoints have been currently set up across Tripoli, and streets in the city’s downtown are heavily deployed with NTC fighters, who are searching for the diehards of the previous administration. Meanwhile, a witness told Xinhua that clashes were also seen in the al-Hadba area in southwestern Tripoli. There are no immediate details on casualties in the incident. Some areas in Tripoli have been currently cut off of water supply, but it has to be confirmed whether this is related to the incident.

A source close to the NTC said there were planned demonstrations by remnant Gaddafi supporters in Tripoli on Friday, a weekend day when almost all businesses in the city are closed. As the NTC saw with surprise the first fierce clashes in Tripoli in over 50 days with Gaddafi supporters after their capture of the Libyan capital, its fighters were also forced to retreat from Sirte, one of a couple of Gaddafi strongholds, the previous day due to strong resistance.

Stop NATO e-mail list home page with archives and search engine: http://groups. yahoo.com/ group/stopnato/ messages

Stop NATO website and articles: http://rickrozoff. wordpress. com

In the light of recent developments regarding the Occupy Wall Street Movement, we are reposting Michel Chossudovsky’s article on Manufacturing Dissent. Below are selected excerpts. To access the complete article click here

READ THE COMPLETE ARTICLE


“Manufacturing Dissent”: the Anti-globalization Movement is Funded by the Corporate Elites
The People’s Movement has been Hijacked
- by Michel Chossudovsky – 2010-09-20

The People’s Movement has been Hijacked

“By providing the funding and the policy framework to many concerned and dedicated people working within the non-profit sector, the ruling class is able to co-opt leadership from grassroots communities, … and is able to make the funding, accounting, and evaluation components of the work so time consuming and onerous that social justice work is virtually impossible under these conditions” (Paul Kivel, You Call this Democracy, Who Benefits, Who Pays and Who Really Decides, 2004, p. 122 )

“We need to challenge the right of the “Globalizers” to rule. This requires that we rethink the strategy of protest. Can we move to a higher plane, by launching mass movements in our respective countries, movements that bring the message of what globalization is doing, to ordinary people? For they are the force that must be mobilized to challenge those who plunder the Globe.” (Michel Chossudovsky,  The Quebec Wall, April  2001)

The term “manufacturing consent” was initially coined by Edward S Herman and Noam Chomsky.

“Manufacturing consent” describes a propaganda model used by the corporate media to sway public opinion and “inculcate individuals with values and beliefs…”:  


….

“Manufacturing dissent”

In this article, we focus on a related concept, namely the subtle process of “manufacturing dissent” (rather than “consent”), which plays a decisive role in serving the interests of the ruling class.

Under contemporary capitalism, the illusion of democracy must prevail. It is in the interest of the corporate elites to accept dissent and protest as a feature of the system inasmuch as they do not threaten the established social order. The purpose is not to repress dissent, but, on the contrary, to shape and mould the protest movement, to set the outer limits of dissent.

To maintain their legitimacy, the economic elites favor limited and controlled forms of opposition, with a view to preventing the development of radical forms of protest, which might shake the very foundations and institutions of global capitalism. In other words, “manufacturing dissent” acts as a “safety valve”, which protects and sustains the New World Order.

To be effective, however, the process of “manufacturing dissent” must be carefully regulated and monitored by those who are the object of the protest movement.

“Funding Dissent”

How is the process of manufacturing dissent achieved?

Essentially by “funding dissent”, namely by channelling financial resources from those who are the object of the protest movement to those who are involved in organizing the protest movement.

The mechanisms of “manufacturing dissent” require a manipulative environment, a process of arm-twisting and subtle cooptation of individuals within progressive organizations, including anti-war coalitions, environmentalists and the anti-globalization movement. 

….

The inner objective is to “manufacture dissent” and establish the boundaries of a “politically correct” opposition. In turn, many NGOs are infiltrated by  informants often acting on behalf of western intelligence agencies. Moreover, an increasingly large segment of the progressive alternative news media on the internet has become dependent on funding from corporate foundations and charities.

Piecemeal Activism

The objective of the corporate elites has been to fragment the people’s movement into a vast “do it yourself” mosaic. War and globalization are no longer in the forefront of civil society activism. Activism tends to be piecemeal. There is no integrated anti-globalization anti-war movement. The economic crisis is not seen as having a relationship to the US led war.

Dissent has been compartmentalized. Separate “issue oriented” protest movements (e.g. environment, anti-globalization, peace, women’s rights, climate change) are encouraged and generously funded as opposed to a cohesive mass movement. This mosaic was already prevalent in the counter G7 summits and People’s Summits of the 1990s.

There can be no meaningful mass movement when dissent is generously funded by those same corporate interests which are the target of the protest movement. In the words of McGeorge Bundy, president of the Ford Foundation (1966-1979),Everything the [Ford] Foundation did could be regarded as ‘making the World safe for capitalism’”.

READ THE COMPLETE ARTICLE


“Manufacturing Dissent”: the Anti-globalization Movement is Funded by the Corporate Elites
The People’s Movement has been Hijacked
- by Michel Chossudovsky – 2010-09-20

The People’s Movement has been Hijacked

Related article


The Protest Movement in Egypt: “Dictators” do not Dictate, They Obey Orders
- by Michel Chossudovsky – 2011-01-29

The relationship of “the dictator” to foreign interests must be addressed.

Islamic Militants Attack Muslim Shrines in Libya CBNNews.com Friday, October 14, 2011

Islamic hard-liners in Libya have attacked at least a half-dozen shrines of other Muslim groups because they believe their practices are sacrilegious.

In one case, eyewitnesses said dozens of armed, bearded men in military uniforms ransacked a Sufi shrine in Tripoli this week.

They burned relics and carried away the remains of two imams, or prayer leaders, for reburial elsewhere.

Sufism is a mystical tradition in Islam. The order said its mission is to live a simple life of contemplation and prayer but its followers are frequently targeted by extremists.

Libya’s new rulers have sought to reassure the international community that extremists will not gain influence as Moammar Gadhafi’s ouster is completed.

Mustafa Abdul-Jalil, head of the governing National Transitional Council, reacted with alarm to reports that graves were being desecrated.

He appealed to a top Muslim cleric, al-Sadek al-Gheriani, to issue a fatwa, or religious ruling, on the issue. He also called for restraint.

“I ask those destroying these mosques to stop doing that because this is not the time to do that,” Abdul-Jalil said Tuesday at a news conference. “What they did is not on the side of the revolution.”

NATO claims of ‘victory” in Libya up in smoke as fighting erupts in Tripoli and rebel “final assault” of Sirte drags on past one week.

Pro-Qaddafi protesters took to the streets in Tripoli carrying aloft the green flags synonymous with Libya’s sovereign government. The demonstration quickly unraveled into a two-hour firefight when the city’s supposed rulers, NATO-backed rebels, confronted them with machine guns. The violence underscores just how tenuous the rebel’s grip is on the capital, while ongoing battles in Bani Walid, Sabha, and Sirte illustrate how flimsy NATO’s premature claim of victory was 2 months ago after their bombardment of Tripoli.

Image: “Well done NATO!

“…the Alliance can finally chalk up an unequivocal success.” Two months later, battles are breaking out in Tripoli, entire cities still fly Libya’s green flag, and NATO bombards populated civilian centers with scores of strike sorties a day, taking out a catastrophic toll on Libya’s civilian population. In other words, an unequivocal failure.

(click image to enlarge)

Twenty to thirty strike sorties have been flown by NATO over Libya everyday since. “Key hits” by NATO have focused almost entirely on the southern city of Bani Walid and the coastal city of Sirte. Sirte is now facing the fourth “final assault” launched against it by rebel forces and has held up its defenses since this latest push began last Friday. City residents and government troops sent rebels in retreat and prompted them to return with tank columns to confront what the London Guardian claims is only “100″ fighters.

Additional sources of humiliation for both NATO and the corporate-media attempting to keep afloat the increasingly incompetent rebel brigades, include the false report made by rebels earlier this week of having captured Qaddafi’s son, Mutassim, and Soros-funded Amnesty International finally providing a watered down “warning” to rebels for brutalizing prisoners, many of whom have been arrested arbitrarily. Between this, and over optimistic claims that Sirte would fall before last week’s end, the truth appears to be that the rebel’s forces are stretched well beyond their operational capacity, engaged in atrocities far beyond what NATO accused Qaddafi of as a pretext for their intervention in the first place, and that protracted resistance to NATO’s campaign has begun across Libya, even in areas thought to be “secured” including Tripoli itself.

The facade of victory the corporate-media has constructed in the past two-months made early reports of violence in Tripoli and fierce counterattacks against NATO’s proxies across Libya seem almost impossible to believe.

However, the fortunes have turned from bad to worse for Libya’s rebels, and while private contractors and NATO special forces are increasing in number across Libya and amongst the rebels’ ranks, it may not be enough to save the dwindling, demoralized fighters, especially as the “fruits” of revolution begin to look more and more like servitude to foreign powers.

America’s Drone War against Somalia

October 15th, 2011 by Global Research

An attack by a US unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) has killed at least 78 people and injured 64 others in southern Somalia, Press TV reports.

The Friday attack took place near Qooqani town located in southern Somalia, a Press TV correspondent reported.

In a different incident on Friday, another US drone attack killed 11 civilians and wounded 34 more in the Hoosingow district in the south of the country.

Somalia is the sixth country where the US military has conducted drone strikes.

The US has employed drones in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya, Iraq and Yemen to launch aerial bombings.

Washington claims the airstrikes target militants, though most such attacks have resulted in civilian casualties.

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The big question is will Greece succumb to insolvency in November? Our answer is probably not. It should take 3 to 6 months but it is coming no matter how much money and credit is thrown at the problem. The markets on the short-term basis believe it is a coin toss. If the funds are not forthcoming you could see a 60-80 percent haircut on bond losses. If it is 3 to 6 months it will probably be 100%. Many in Europe believe the Merkel-Sarkozy team has a plan that will work, but as yet we do not know what that plan is. In spite of that the euro this past week rallied from $1.32 to $1.38 as the US dollar fell lower.

Greece has been laboring under austerity imposed by the EU, IMF and the ECB and as a result their deficit for the first half of the year rose to $21.4 billion from $17.3 billion. Needless to say, tax revenues have fallen off a cliff and as a result the Troika has mandated further cuts in order to offset revenue loss. This is a never ending story, because when all is said and done the economy will be all but dismantled, that is what economy existed in the first place. As a result unemployment worsens and that provides more demonstrators in the streets. Those lower tax receipts mean more government layoffs. As a result of these and other problems Greek projections came up about 25% short of projections. These nebulous announcements by key players certainly did not justify major rallies in stock markets. Economic numbers in Greece are dreadful and in the UK, US and Europe they are only marginally better. It is obvious the world is slowing down.

Very disturbing is that the Fed, other central banks; governments and financial communities have no idea as to how to end the ongoing financial and economic crisis. All they can come up with is to throw money at the problem, which has not worked and extending the timeline has solved nothing. As a result the world is headed into a further fall into depressionary inflation. Virtually everyone in the financial sector in the US, UK and Europe are clamoring for more issuance of money and credit, now known as quantatiative easing.  

As you are aware the Greek government has passed an increase in real estate taxes, which generally are unpayable and they intend to pass more legislation making the increases retroactive to 2001. Strikes continue day after day as demonstrators march in the streets. Knowing Greek debt is unpayable German and French economists are urging a 50% default on Greek debt, which was offered by Greece 1-1/2 years ago. Recent figures call for a 60% to 80% write off. Greece will fall into default – it’s only a matter of when and how much money EU members want to throw at the problem. The markets we believe have priced in a Greek default already, but what hasn’t been discounted is the failure of the other five nations in trouble.

In contrast we look at Ireland, which baled out Anglo Irish Bank and Nationwide Building Society. That will cost Irish citizens about $70 billion. The Irish political establishment sold the people of the Republic of Ireland down the river. The banks, owned by the Alpha Group made up of among others the Royal families of England and Holland and the Rothschilds, were let off the hook for $70 billion. Finance Minister Michael Noonan wants to use funds from the expanding rescue fund to get funds at lower interest rates rather than have to sell bonds. The cost of funding this every year could play a big part in bringing sustainability. Current Irish 10-year interest rates are 7.76%.

Last year Irish politicians took on $93 billion of aid to bail out banks too big to fail. In an effort to spread assistance to the banks government finance gave the banks IOU’s for the full amount. This allowed government not to have to raise money and in turn the IOU’s were used as collateral to borrow funds from the Irish central banks, which is simple slight of hand. The overall goal is to reduce interest charges.

Next, Ireland will tap the EFSF for a loan to pay off the IOU’s and save $23 billion. That loan would not have to be paid for 15 years at lower interest rates.

Ireland has been a tale of woe for centuries, mostly due to the British. Part of our family emigrated from Dublin, Ireland in 1882. The period of the 1980s and 90s saw Ireland boom and far, far too many homes were built. The resulting real estate crash is still in process. As apposed to Greece banks lent only modest amounts of money to the Irish government, because building produced large revenues to the government, some 30% to 40% of housing costs went to the government. As we all know now Ireland is in an austerity program. Salaries and pensions were cut, but not by 40% to 50%, but by 15%. As in Europe the complaint is the cut in social services, which we believe are outrageous. A family of 4 would get $9,400 a month. Mind you that is for doing nothing. These recipients also do not have to pay property taxes or for water.

Ireland is a favorite place for American business, some 600 companies that employ about 100,000 people. On the other hand over 200 Irish firms employ over 80,000 Americans. Ireland has as a result a positive trade balance and that means they have the ability to survive. The other five insolvent countries do not have that advantage. The Irish government should have never taken on the banks’ debt, because under current terms they cannot repay it. They are now totally enslaved to the banking system. The old government in place for many, many years was voted out and the new one is attempting to obtain new terms. If they do not Ireland will be in poverty for the next 25 to 50 years. Ireland should default just like the other five should. Such debt should have never been assumed because it was the debt of the banks, not the people. The Irish people were sold out by their previous politicians. When Irish politicians capitulated the IMF and ECB guaranteed that any help given to other countries, such as Greece, would be given to Ireland as well. That is why Irish politicians went along with the deal and to save the euro. We do not see a resolution in sight unless terms are changed and large amounts of bailout loans are made.

Contagion has been promised and if it is not forthcoming the euro, euro zone and EU will be history. That number is $4 to $6 trillion for six countries, a figure that is unattainable from solvent countries. All the experts, two years after we made our projections are still in la la land. The German government is closest to reality at $3.5 trillion. The experts offer a guesstiment of $2.8 trillion. One group projects $8.3 trillion. Who knows they may be right. The bottom line is anything above $1.5 trillion can’t be done, thus collapse for these six countries has to come.

Almost weekly banks and government debt ratings are lowered, making the situation even more dire. France is very close to losing its AAA rating as a result of their own banking profligacy and the burdens they face in bailing out the near do wells. The French and other politicians talk of leveraging the $500 billion in EFSF funds into the trillions. It is illegal due to some sovereign constitutions, but such things do not deter politicians, who are all with minor exceptions, controlled by the bankers.

Politicians cannot make the right decision, because they are elitists, out of touch with their constituents and taking orders from the elites. The longer this goes on the worse it will get and kicking the can down the road is not going to work as well. The big hitters in this game cannot forgive debt of the insolvent and they cannot bail them out. Politicians like Sarkozy and Merkel want joint resolution via all 27 EU members to cover themselves against the voters. A real solution is moving further and further away whether they know it or not. The euro probably won’t survive, because the problems have gone to far and citizens of the solvent countries do not want to bail out the insolvent anymore. This all could have been avoided if the EU and euro had never been created. This is and has been an unnatural association, which was doomed from the very beginning to failure. This is all the result of those in banking, finance and big business and their mad dreams of world government that cannot work.

Move On Tries to Take Over Occupy Wall Street Protests

October 15th, 2011 by Washington's Blog

David DeGraw – one of the primary Wall Street protest organizers – just sent me the following email:

Top MoveOn leaders / executives are all over national television speaking for the movement. fully appreciate the help and support of MoveOn, but the MSM is clearly using them as the spokespeople for OWS. This is an blatant attempt to fracture the 99% into a Democratic Party organization. The leadership of MoveON are Democratic Party operatives. they are divide and conquer pawns. For years they ignored Wall Street protests to keep complete focus on the Republicans, in favor of Goldman’s Obama and Wall Street’s Democratic leadership.

 

If anyone at Move On or Daily Kos would like to have a public debate about these comments, we invite it.

 

Please help us stop this divide and conquer attempt.

DeGraw – who is wholly non-partisan [like the writers at Washington's Blog] – tells me that about half of the protesters are liberals, but the other half are libertarians (and see this.)

This mirrors what one of the original organizers of the “Occupy Trenton” protest told me: MoveOn attempted to set the agenda and pretend it was their event.

As I noted last week:

Everyone’s trying to cash in on the courage and conviction of the Wall Street protesters.

 

People are trying to associate Occupy Wall Street with their pet projects, in the same way that advertisers try to associate the goodwill of the Super Bowl, NBA playoffs, World Series or Olympics with their product.

 

But I hear from OWS organizers that the protesters come from totally diverse political affiliations. Many protesters support Ron Paul, many like Obama, others are for other parties or candidates or don’t vote at all.

 

The protesters themselves are having none of it, tweeting today:

 

We don’t want to be the democratic tea party or liberal tea party. We want to be our own movement separate of any political affiliation.

 

Update: Another tweet from the protesters:

 

We don’t represent liberal interests nor are we the liberal tea party. We represent the interest of the 99%

And as I pointed out Tuesday:

The two main challenges [facing the protesters are]: (1) An attempt by both the Democratic and Republican parties to co-opt it (see thisthis and this); and (2) agents provocateur (see thisthis and this) [and here].

“We the People”: Awaking from our Slumber

October 15th, 2011 by Dr. Ilya Sandra Perlingieri

The more laws and restrictions there are,
the poorer the people become.
The sharper men’s weapons,
The more trouble in the land.
The more ingenious and clever men are,
The more strange things happen. The more rules and regulations,
The more thieves and robbers. Lao Tsu.
“The Tao Te Ching” (# 57) 6th century BCE

Humanity obliges us to be affected with the distresses and Miserys of our fellow creatures…. Abigail Adams, 1763

After several weeks of peaceful assembly of countless people gathered near Wall Street, mainstream media has been forced to report that this is no small event. Finally! We the people are waking from our long geo-engineered, drug-induced apathy. If little of substance was reported by managed-and-controlled news (85 percent of which is now in the hands of five corporations), the alternative press and Internet have spread the word:

We have had enough!
Enough lies and deceit.
Enough rigging of and stealing trillions of our taxpayer dollars.
Enough invading countries for their natural resources.
Enough of poisoning our food, air, soil, and water.
Enough of breaking of all laws and treaties.
Enough of all the rogue actions by those in charge!
Enough of destroying our constitution.

I am reading Woody Holton’s biography, “Abigail Adams: A Life” (published in 2009). It is a fascinating account of a woman who was far ahead of her times in Revolutionary America, still then part of the British Colonies and London bank control. She spoke her mind and wrote a good deal; and much of her correspondence has come down to us. She had a unique partnership with her husband, John, in ways that most eighteenth-century women did not. Abigail Adams was one of our extraordinary Founding Mothers. It seems propitious that I’m reading this at this particular time, as I watch our country go under. Another of her comments, written in 1774 to her husband John on the eve of the Revolutionary War, seems particularly valid now (given all the contrived wars):

“Man is Generally Called out to the full display of his Abilities but how often do they Exhibit the Most Mortifying instances of Neglected Opportunities and their Minds appear Not with standing the Advantages of what is Called a Liberal Education, as Barren of Culture and Void of Every useful aquirement…”

We need to remember that we once used to be a country of laws. Other countries looked up to us and respected what we did.

Now, over the past decade, all has been trashed: for unending wars of Imperial Conquest; for theft of millions of our homes; for enormous invasion of our privacy (from monitoring our phone calls and emails to the TSA sexually assaulting us at the airports –even small children and elders in diapers); for theft by the banksters of trillions of our hard-earned tax dollars; for injecting us with dangerous and untested vaccines; for poisoning us with tons of chemicals in our food, soil, and water and overhead with deadly and daily attacks of aerosolized Chemtrails and geo-engineered weather; and for the deliberate destruction of our Constitution and our country.

Millions of us are out of work. Millions of us are ill. Millions of us have lost our homes and our life savings.

It has all been well orchestrated by the criminals in charge. Do we really want to turn over our country to a world government with these kinds of people in charge? Just look at the chaos within the European Union –run by non-elected officials and the banksters.

This was all planned by the wealthy and well-connected elite insiders [less than 1 percent of our population] in business, law, corporations, and government. They have been working on wrecking everything we had, including: the total destruction of the middle class and every financial benefit we had; the total destruction of our educational system; and the total destruction of our health and what used to be our gorgeous environment.

The tragedies surrounding Nature are epic in scope and created by the destructive plans of insiders.

None of it is natural. Whales beach themselves. Bees are dying by the millions. Birds fall out of the sky and millions of fish mysteriously die. Animals are hunted to extinction. Our own web of life is under constant military siege, while (just as one example) 11.7 million marine mammals, fish, sea turtles, and ocean habitats are at risk for being killed by the US Navy’s multiple 5-year warfare plan! Please help stop this insanity. See Rosalind Peterson’s report: www.agriculturedefensecoalition.org/us-navy  

The “End of Nature” as Bill McKibben wrote has been created by nefarious human behavior. In just the past year-and-a-half, the entire web of sea life has been contaminated and destroyed in both the Gulf of Mexico by the oilrig explosion last year and in the Pacific Ocean by Fukushima’s on-going nuclear disaster and its long-term radioactivity that now affects the entire globe. This is the worst nuclear accident in history. Do we want more nuclear facilities? It is a completely UNSAFE TECHNOLOGY! Seafood is radioactive in the Pacific Ocean and contaminated by oil and Corexit in the Gulf. None of it is safe to eat. Yet, this is not reported by the mass media and not monitored by the government. So, no one can be held accountable for extensive damage and death. The Gulf’s new genetically engineered “Blue Plague” and the horrors of Morgellons are both synthetic and replicating and have affected possibly millions of humans and other animals throughout our entire web of life. The latest news on the enormous ecosystem collapse of the entire Gulf of Mexico is here: www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=26947  

This is part of the epic dis-order of an Orwellian wrecked world that has been accelerated by the elite’s deadly and secret timetable to destroy our country and pit everyone against everyone else. Hatred has been instilled in media reports as well as the militarized and often privatized police (often now consisting of returning “vets” who have been damaged by wars, DU [radioactive Depleted Uranium] bombs, and forced toxic vaccinations). Neighbors are asked to “rat” on one another. Children and “scouts” are asked to “report anything suspicious.” They do not have the life experience to determine this. The mass media feeds us lies, violence, and destruction. This is now tragically endemic to our broken society. Is this what we stand for? Here’s a reminder from Thomas Jefferson:

“If a nation expects to be ignorant & free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was & never will be. The functionaries of every government have propensities to command at will the liberty & property of their constituents. [See: mortgage-home theft and the UN’s Agenda 21 being brought here by stealth.] There is no safe deposit for these but with the people themselves; nor can they be safe without information.” Monticello. Jan. 6, 1816.

Here are the very first words of our Constitution: “We the People of the United States, in Order to from a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense [this does not mean invading other countries, one after another, illegally], promoted the general Posterity [now only for the rich], do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

None of our Constitution is any longer in existence. The “Republic” is long gone. So, too, is Democracy. The façade crumbled long ago; and every part of society is in a huge free-fall. Not one criminal in charge, in any of the branches of government, has yet to be held accountable.

US Constitution. Article 1, Section 8: [other quotes below are also from this section.] “To establish Post Offices and post Roads.”

The US Postal System was privatized; and it looks like the entire system is soon headed for bankruptcy. If that does happen, how will these laid-off people find other jobs? The old “post” roads, now part of the Eisenhower Interstate Highway System in more and more places, have been privatized with tolls. The tolls have doubled in price over the past year, while thousands of miles of toll roads are full of potholes. This makes travel now very hard on millions of people who are out of work [the real unemployment figure is more than 25 percent], as they can’t make ends meet for even basics. In addition, over the past two or more years, barricades have now been set up throughout our nation’s roads. Large Warning Signs (in yellow or white) with lights have been put in, stating: “When flashing, exit here.” Fines and jail await anyone who does not comply. In addition, if you continue on the road, new gates (like those at railroad crossings) have been built to stop you. Thousands of these gates [many installed with their own solar batteries] are now at on-ramps, as well. What for? Are we going to be “penned in” or “not allowed” to travel? Is this where more of our destroyed tax-dollars go?

New jobs will not be happening, because the whole manufacturing and job infrastructure has been destroyed and sent off shore. It’s not just “blue” collar workers, it’s everyone –but the rich– who are affected. Schools continue to be closed and thousands of teachers fired. Last month, in San Diego County there were several news reports of 10 more public schools to be closed. The Board of Education there also plans to stop teaching cursive writing! In Maine, perfectly good schools have been shut down, and the children are bused 20 or more miles away. Unions, which once were strong, have now been gutted so corporations can do what they want. Their bottom line is profit. Nothing else matters.

“To coin money, regulate the Value thereof…” This was destroyed when the Federal Reserve (not answerable to anyone!) took over, by theft, the financial workings of the entire US. This goes back to Andrew Jackson, Woodrow Wilson and John F. Kennedy (all of whom tried to get rid of the banksters). The final nail in the financial coffin was in 1971 when the US went off the Gold Standard. Gold and silver prices are deliberately rigged from behind the scenes. The “almighty buck” is mere green toilet paper (fiat money)…and this too is rigged. Today, the US “dollar” is worth less than 5 cents.

Professor Peter Dale Scott has written eloquently (he’s also a poet) about what he calls the “Deep Events” in our history [see author references below] that have changed the direction of our country: Lincoln’s and Kennedy’s assassinations; the destruction of NY’s Twin Towers and a Building 7 in this complex, and some object [not a plane] hitting the Pentagon. There are many “events” that were orchestrated from behind the scenes. Answers and those supposedly responsible were quick to be reported by a compliant press; but the Truth of what really happened is covered in lies, distortions, published so-called “Blue Ribbon Commissions” that are rigged, and no real FOI [Freedom of Information, where relevant info is blacked out, or actually destroyed].

In all of the mainstream writings about what needs to be “gutted” or trimmed in the already destroyed budget, not ONE WORD is ever written about cutting the out-of-control military budget. This is now more than 75 percent of US expenditures. The entire war machine is more “economically vital” than education, health and/or elder care, or any other social services: More than 13-million US children are on food stamps (and this figure does not include many formerly middle class parents who have lost their jobs and also are in need of food stamps). There is no money for food for our children, but there’s always war money to kill. The entire military system could be truly brought into the 21st century by turning it into a Peaceful Resource: getting rid of all the bombs, dismantling more than 800 bases around the globe, and for rebuilding what it has systematically destroyed. The nuclear industry continues to destroy our health and our planet. Both bombs and hazardous facilities continue to be used no matter what the long-term price of decades of radioactive contamination.

“To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts…” Science has been taken over by corporate money. Universities, no long independent institutions of higher learning, count on enormous corporate “donations” as tuition goes sky-high, but real education and critical thinking are trashed. The rare independent scientists are hounded and threatened, if they do not conform to the status quo lies of global warming [now discredited by thousands of scientists…but this is the cover for all the real harm and ongoing dangers of geo-engineered weather modification, poisonous Chemtrails, and haarp technology]. We no longer have environmental “protection.” This actually means privatizing public lands and more of UN Agenda 21. Millions of doses of various pharmaceuticals and vaccines put us all in jeopardy –just read the list of toxic ingredients. We are the uninformed experimental lab rats, while corporate profits are sky high.

Here’s the latest vaccine news from Barbara Loe Fisher, the highly respected Director of NVIC [National Vaccine Information Center]: www.youtube.com/watch?v=m4HkwCA7ft4 and

http://beforeitsnews.com/story/1105/816/A_Parents_Horrid_Nightmare:_Coming_Soon_To_YOUR_State.html  

“No State shall, without the Consent of Congress…enter into any Agreement or Compact with another State, or with a foreign Power, or engage in War, unless invaded…”

In Orwellian fashion, the US military empire has invaded many countries…who have posed absolutely NO THREAT to us, but whose natural resources are wanted. The press and officials lie to us repeatedly about the “reasons” for these invasions. Millions of innocent Iraqis, Afghanis, Pakastanis, and now Libyans have been killed by US/NATO military. Those who have not died yet from exposure to illegal DU bombs, have already been toxically exposed. This also includes US and other military personnel. For what? Is it not treason when American citizens meet behind closed doors to plan who knows what kind of war and destruction at private meetings?

US Constitution. Amendment 1: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people to peaceably assemble, to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

We no longer have free speech. The press is rigged with propaganda and useless “Hollyweird” escapades, while everything we had/have is being taken from us by those in charge. The “spin” keeps millions of poorly educated, dysfunctional, and brain damaged people distracted.

We have had decades of trying to get “redress of grievances” –all to no avail. From letters to governors, mayors, and Congress there is not one public official who has responded to our concerns of billions of us being used as uninformed laboratory subjects for hundreds of thousands of tons of geo-engineered poisons being sprayed on us 24/7/365 by public, private, and military jets. Thousands of us have tested our soil, artificial “sno” and water and soil to find a horrific assortment of deadly chemicals in them. None of this is “naturally occurring.” The list goes on and on.

In another example, I know from personal experience that public officials do NOT respond to our concerns. We do not matter –except to vote in rigged elections. During the 2003, 1-million-acre, 15-arson southern California FIRESTORM that destroyed my neighborhood of 2,000 people, I called 50 public officials (including the governor, several mayors, numerous fire chiefs, and state congress people). Only one person returned my call for help for our community.

We cannot make any sound decisions about our lives, our health, our precious children and grandchildren, our family and friends, if we are poorly educated, uninformed, and often invisibly harmed by the horrific assortment of hazardous poisons (in our air, and water, and food). Our cognitive functioning is affected. No one can think clearly or cogently, if a person is poisoned. Now, the planned so-called “smart” utility grid to be set up nationwide and worldwide, everyone will be exposed to extremely high levels of dangerous RF [Radiofrequency Radiation] that is no only an invasion of our privacy in our homes, it is also carcinogenic and damages cognitive and neurological functioning. Next year, all of your home appliances will have to be replaced with “chipped” ones that will conform to these meters on this deadly grid. None of this is safe technology. [It’s “smart” for the corporations that are making millions of dollars profits at our expense, while getting rid of employees who used to be meter readers.] It’s all about off-the-scale corporate greed. Everyone will be harmed!

So, here’s a list of ESSENTIAL READING that connects many of the dots of our multiple crises. We must peacefully DEMAND a return to a peaceful civil society. The system we have now is now in shreds and is entirely broken. The corruption is systemic. It is not fixable by those in charge, because they are the problem.

1. Dr. Nick Begich and Jeane Manning. “Angels Don’t Play This Haarp.”

2. Rosalie Bertell. “Planet Earth. The Latest Weapon of War.”

3. Michel Chossudovsky. “The Globalization of Poverty and the New World Order.” 2nd edition; and his new e-book: http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=26780  

4. Theo Colburn et al. “Our Stolen Future.”

5. F. William Engdahl. “Seeds of Destruction.” See also I-SIS [London’s Institute of Science in Society, the premier site for GMO info] at www.i-sis.org.uk

6. Peter Dale Scott: www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=17300  

7. Dr. Edward O. Wilson. “The Future of Life” 2002, and “Consilience. The Unity of Knowledge” 1998.

8. Ruth Winter. “A Dictionary of Food Additives.” 7th edition, 2009.

Here’s what’s been happening: www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM0aAsl1Ks&feature=related  

and www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1E5_rb9-oc&feature=relmfu  

and www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financialcrisis/8802223/Occupy-Wall-Street-protests-spread-across-U.S.html  

http://theintelhub.com/2011/09/25/over-100-chemical-and-biological-response-units-show-up-at-occupy-wall-street-protests-amid-police-brutality  

and finally: Guess who is behind the violent crackdown on the peaceful Wall Street assembly? http://theintelhub.com/2011/10/01/jp-morgan-funded-nypd-mass-arrests-over-700-peaceful-occupy-wall-street-protesters  

What else can we do? We have huge and untapped power as consumers that we’ve barely used. Now is the time to use our Consumer Power. The buck really does stop at the cash register. We do not have to buy companies’ products that cause us harm, that poison our children, or that cause obesity and hormone disruption. It is as simple as that! No GMOs. No pesticides. No dangerous drugs and/or vaccines! No fluoride or chlorine or mercury. No aspartame and other synthetic sweeteners. No chemicals that damage your DNA [children are now born with a “Body Burden” of poisonous chemicals in their DNA], wreck your immune systems and health, destroy your ability to reproduce [male sperm count is down 50 percent in the past 25 years; women have trouble conceiving or maintaining a pregnancy], and change your hormones.

This is all a planned multi-pronged attack by insiders to wreck everything across the entire web of life.

Boycott the corporations that are poisoning us and stealing our jobs and livelihoods. Shop locally. Don’t use big-box stores. Go to your local Farmer’s Market. Support local organic farmers. Ask them to test their no longer “organic” soil for heavy metals! Our soils need massive remediation. Don’t buy Genetically Engineered foods (including corn, soy, and wheat). Don’t buy foods with chemical additives. Can you imagine what can happen if the corporations can’t sell their poisonous products?

In the words of the great Greek tragedian Euripides (c.480 BCE-406 BCE): “A slave is he [she, too] who cannot speak his [her] thoughts.” Now, we are slaves of the banksters, and so will all our progeny be for a very long time –unless, we find other alternatives. We must disentangle ourselves from the perpetual vice-grip of the banksters. Here are two choices: 1. Find local credit unions not connected to the banks –supposedly, too big to fail. 2. Set up local money systems not related to the banks. This has been done before: www.smallisbeautiful.org/publications/essay_orion.html

The power of love and peace and caring is what makes humans extraordinary! This is the direction we must go. The opposite is where we are now: a world devoid or ethics, moral behavior, and/or justice. Remember also: there are more of us than the criminals.

In Thomas Jefferson’s words:

“No Government ought to be without censors; & where the press is free, no one ever will.” Written to George Washington, from Monticello, Sept. 9, 1792
 
Educator and environmental writer Dr. Ilya Sandra Perlingieri is the author of the highly acclaimed book, “The Uterine Crisis.” London’s “The Ecologist” calls this book “an inspiration.”

Iraq – Afghanistan – Libya NOW IRAN, LIES & MORE PENTAGON LIES!

October 14th, 2011 by International Action Center

Iraq – Afghanistan – Libya  

NOW IRAN

LIES, LIES & MORE PENTAGON LIES!

SIGN THE ONLINE PETITION DEMANDING AN END TO THE PHONY WAR HYPE FABRICATED ACCUSATIONS AGAINST IRAN! at stopwaroniran.org/petition.shtml

A worsening economic crisis; three disastrous wars that have killed millions of people and cost trillions of dollars stolen from essential programs for OIL, OIL, OIL and the U.S. corporate drive for markets, profit and empire – this is why the U.S. government has FALSELY accused the Iranian government of sponsoring a terrorist plot in the United States. 

Washington’s campaign against Iran for an alleged assassination plot lacks evidence and fails every test of logic The U.S government is making unbelievable, far-tetched allegations that somehow the Iranian government was involved in a bizarre plot to assassinate the Saudi Arabian ambassador in Washington.  Anyone capable of independent thought has raised questions as to its truth. So why is the U.S. government desperate to use an unbelievable pretext to begin a campaign of sanctions and possible war against Iran?

The accusation comes as militant mass actions spurred by austerity and mass suffering at the hands of corporate greed are literally sweeping the globe. The Occupy Wall Street movement has captured peoples’ imagination everywhere. Within the U.S. over 110 ongoing occupations and 1,454 support actions have been reported, while mass uprisings are continuing across the Middle East, Europe, and Latin America.

The wild and fabricated charge against Iran has been rolled out in an all too familiar pattern which was used to hype the wars against Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya: unfounded charges with no evidence, high level leaks, scripted quotes about threats to national security from top officials, calls for stricter sanctions, and military retaliation. All is repeated by a frenzied, coordinated media (big business corporate media tied to the military) campaign. The point is to set the stage in the minds of millions of people who are now rising up in righteous anger against the Wall Street banks and the U.S. Government that their enemy is somewhere else, rather than right here at home. 

NO WAR AGAINST IRAN,

NO MORE WARS!!!

While the U.S. accuses Iran of terrorism, in fact the U.S. government and its allies have been carrying out a large scale program of deadly drone attacks against Pakistan, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen, along with terror against Iran including assassinating four Iranian scientists and imprisoning a large number of kidnapped Iranian citizens in the U.S. The financial assets of the Iranian government and its people have been seized and are being held in U.S. banks for their use. 

Join people around the world in opposing another criminal U.S. war.

SIGN THE ONLINE PETITION DEMANDING AN END TO THE PHONY WAR HYPE FABRICATED ACCUSATIONS AGAINST IRAN! at stopwaroniran.org/petition.shtml

www.StopWarOnIran.org

Join actions in support of Occupy Wall Street all across the country.

www.OccupyTogether.org

Join coordinated national antiwar demonstrations on Sat. Oct 15.

www.UNACpeace.org

We need Jobs, Education, Health Care and Housing, NOT War!

www.IACenter.org

Japan Contamination Maps: Radiation is Spreading….

October 14th, 2011 by Lucas W Hixson

  

Seven months after a triple meltdown at the coastal nuclear plant, as Japan is still trying to get a sense of the radioactive fallout, regulators, operators, and investors in the nuclear industry face the toughest daily battle in 30 years.  Numerous hot spots well outside the 20 km exclusion zone keep popping up.
Elevated levels of radioactive cesium have been recently found more than 240 kilometers from the plant.  Concerned residents who doubt the accuracy of the government’s monitoring now perform their own tests.

Japans Citizen/Patriots Show Contamination Problems Accumulating

Recently updated contamination maps provided to Japanese citizens have shown that the contamination is spreading, but the government and TEPCO are still not releasing analysis of all of the data required to ensure public safety, most notably a full analysis of radioactive isotopes released from the 4 crippled reactor buildings at Fukushima Daiichi.

A recent soil sample in Yokohama, analyzed earlier this week near Tokyo, was found to contain strontium-90, an isotope that can accumulate in bones and cause cancer.

According to a TBS report, the level of radioactive strontium was 195 becquerels, which is 95 becquerels per kilogram above the government standard.

The strontium was found atop an apartment building in a measurement made by a private agency at the request of a resident, and was not recorded in the regular monitoring done by the ward.  Yokohama is about 250 kilometers from the Fukushima nuclear plant.

This was the second finding in the area in the last month, following the announcement from the Yokohama government last month that it detected 40,200 becquerels of radioactive cesium per kilogram of sediment collected from one part of a roadside ditch, easily exceeding the 5,000 bq government benchmark.

In the city of Funabashi in Chiba Prefecture, just north of Tokyo, officials said Thursday that a small part of a park in the city recorded elevated levels of radiation, about five times the highest levels previously detected in the city since the nuclear accident.

In both cases, local authorities confirmed elevated contamination after being informed by local citizens’ groups that had measured levels with their own measuring devices, and did not explain why the elevated readings were not present on official surveys, one can only hope that the recent public findings have a positive effect on the accuracy of the official surveys across Japan.

Soil in the Watari District, of Fukushima has been found with contamination over 500% the normal levels of radiation, and the entire district is very highly contaminated. Officials had apparently also missed these hot spots in earlier surveys.

These average Japenese patriots carrying radiation-monitoring equipment have found  unreported hot-spots in an alarmingly large number of areas around the nation, typically before municipalities and other official monitoring officials.  This not only fuels the belief that the government is willingly turning their eye on a situation that is continually leaving them gasping for any sense of clarity, but also has an impact on the citizens daily stress and belief in their government .

“I know quite a few people around here who have bought radiation counters,” said Yoshinori Oda, a 71-year-old retired Setagaya resident who lives just a few hundred meters from the sidewalk in question. “There are many families with young kids around here, and the worried parents are rich enough to buy expensive measuring devices.

These findings have been even worse for the image of the government, as it has already publicly embarrassed Japanese officials into promising even MORE detailed government monitoring of radiation levels in the country’s most populous region.

Digging into the story in Setagaya

  • Citizens in Setagaya Ward near Tokyo detected radiation of 2.707 microsieverts per hour at the fence, which is in the Tsurumaki district, on Oct. 6, and reported it to the government who later measured the radiation. 

  • For days, images of the sidewalk outside the house were repeatedly shown on national TV, while experts have tried to explain why the detected levels were so high, assuming that the contamination was linked to the nuclear accident some 150 miles away.
  • Researchers found radiation levels of 3.35 microsieverts per hour in tree leaves at a height of one meter by the fence of the unoccupied house along the street in Tsurumaki — much higher than previously reported levels.  
  • The experts found that the most recently detected radiation is highly limited, as levels fall by almost half about 1 meter from the fence.
  • Once the hotspot was identified and cordoned off, local residents were told the radiation was no threat to health.
  • Other sections of the pavement – which is regularly used by children at a nearby school and nursery – were unaffected, said the Kyodo news agency.
  • There were later suggestions that contaminated rainwater could have collected on a rooftop before dripping on to the pavement. 
  • Officials said radiation tests would be carried out in 258 parks in the ward.
  • Setagaya Mayor Nobuto Hosaka said washing the pavement with water had not dispersed the radiation, Reuters reported.
  • But Officials later on Thursday again changed their proposed source when it was said they were almost certain that the radiation had not come from Fukushima, after a mysterious finding of unknown material which was being stored in old bottles in a wooden box.

The officials in Setagaya Ward confirmed a contaminated area on a patch of sidewalk that read of 2.707 microsieverts per hour on October 6th, and covered a 1-by-10-meter area.  The contamination was first identified by the concerned parents who reported the readings to the local government, who was admittedly unbelieving of their claims despite findings that cesium contamination had spread over 240 km from the plant, well within their proximity to the crippled plant.

"I've been measuring radiation
                          levels throughout the metropolitan Tokyo
                          areas, but I have never seen such a high level
                          of radiation as I found here," one member
                          of a nuclear action group told reporters.
TOKYO, Japan – Photo taken on Oct. 13, 2011, shows part of a sidewalk in a residential area of Tsurumaki in Setagaya Ward, Tokyo, where airborne radiation of up to 3.35 microsieverts per hour, exceeding readings in some evacuation zones around the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, was detected the same day. Road cones have been placed around the site by the ward office, as the sidewalk is used as a route to a nearby elementary school. (Kyodo)

Even the Mayor of Setagaya Nobuto Hosaka admitted his tentativeness to accept the reported quantities during an interview with TBS Reporters: “I thought the reading must be a mistake when I first heard…” and the mayor refused to take further steps until the readings were confirmed by ministry officials.

The contamination is below the government level meriting an evacuation order, but parents have expressed concern about a link between thyroid abnormalities and radiation, citing reports of a rise after Chernobyl in 1986. Many parents were concerned because the fence is located along a route children take to school, prompting Setagaya Ward to set up traffic cones and encourage kids to steer clear of it.

The experts and officials initially tried to brush it off as an isolated event and not a reason for alarm, postulating the contamination accumulated when the source had dripped from a roof where radioactive materials had accumulated.   Despite the fact that radiation levels in the area had not fallen since the ward’s efforts to decontaminate it over the last 7 days, the authorities casually advised parents to permit the children to avoid the walkway as they go to school.

Questions yet to be answered

What readings were taken on the roof that led to initial statements that radioactive materials had collected there and fallen onto the contaminated area on the street?

The inconsistencies with the offices description of the radiation on the street changed in the hours leading up to the finding of the bottles in the house

Despite Decontamination of Ground,  Strong Radiation From The Ground

The ward office initially believed the relatively strong radiation came from the ground and decided to commence decontamination operations and scrubbed the walkway near the fence after Oct. 6, but the radiation level “barely dropped,” said Setagaya official Ken Hatanaka.

Reuters reported Setagaya Mayor Nobuto Hosaka said washing the pavement had also failed to lower the radiation levels.
During the course of the next week Researchers found radiation levels of 3.35 microsieverts per hour in tree leaves at a height of one meter by the fence of the unoccupied house along the street in Tsurumaki — much higher than previously reported levels.

Officials Change Stance On Status of Radiation

The experts later completely ignored the previous statements and stated that the most recently detected radiation is limited, as highest levels are found withing 1 meter from the fence.  The area was cordoned off as a precaution and checks carried out while nuclear experts tried to establish why such a small area was affected.

Fukushi of Tokyo Metropolitan University was the researcher who checked the site and tracked the radiation to a spot on the fence about 1 meter from the ground.  Fukushi said he checked the radiation a few centimeters above the ground and the level had dropped to less than 1.0 microsievert.   The announcement by Setagaya puzzled some experts because the wooden fence was apparently emitting the radiation.

Trees nearby also have about a half or one-third of the radiation level, Fukushi said.

There is yet to be an complete disclosure of findings from areas closest to the fence published, but if this is referring to the tree leaves that were found to be over 3 uSv/hr, and indicating they are 1/2 to 1/2 the levels of the radiation near the fence, it should be carefully reviewed to see that the level had dropped from 6-8 uSv/hr 1 meter from the ground, and less than 1 uSv/hr a few inches above the ground.  This would also make the migration of contamination more complicated than a simple leak theory as there were multiple protection barriers and no clear transmission path identified.

It is clear even if the Setagaya case is indeed unrelated to Fukushima, questions remain for the ward to research and provide answers for to the citizens, like investigating how long was it unattended in the house, and how did the contamination spread without an apparent direct path to where the readings were taken?.

While the initial reporting of the finds by the citizens didn’t make international news, after official attempts to decontaminate the spot only to find the radiation levels increasing incited the national response in Japan enough to attract international attention.

Initially a spokeswoman for Setagaya Ward would not immediately confirm the new readings to the media.  The spokesperson did note that the high readings have been shown only in a two-meter long area and below 1.5 meters from the ground.  “We don’t know the cause (of the high radiation levels) yet…We are asking experts to find it urgently and decontaminate the area,” she said.

It is unclear the sequence of events that lead to the discovery, but a house in the area was selected for testing.  The traditional Japanese house that officials tested stoodout in a neighborhood described by Mr. Oda as “posh.” The old wooden house looks humble and almost abandoned, drawing a stark contrast with a large Western-style house just across the street with multiple cars in its spacious garage, what led the officials to search the premises unknown.
The ward announced they would work with residents to gauge radiation levels inside the fence and collect and analyze leaves at the site.  After obtaining permission from the house’s owner, the experts measured radiation levels on the premises.

Questions yet to be answered

Why did officials delay to secure a potential dirty weapon source identified in an abandoned house?

It may not be a coincidence that nearly every report includes a statement about how consent was received to enter the house, considering it was perceived to be abandoned, implying officials claim to have waited until identifying the readings were coming from the house, and instead of entering it to locate a public health hazard, instead focused on identifying and locating the landowner for explicit information.  

An isolated source contained within multiple forms of containment is an unexpected element for the contamination found on the street, if it was detected externally it would be reasonable to assume that especially post-911 and after Fukushima, authorities could have easily entered the residence and immediately secured a source which is considered a hazardous and potentially can be used for dirty weapons
The bottles were in a wooden crate and ‘covered with mud’. Reports deduced they appeared to have  been there for years, a lucky find under any conditions.  No data was released as to how the bottles were stored, and where the substance contained originated from.

Questions yet to be answered

Why do officials view decontamination of the exterior of the house more difficult than the internal decontamination.

It was also determined at that time that the contamination appeared to be limited to one site, as other hot spots were found in different parts of Tokyo.  On Friday, officials are to begin to decontaminate the house but said they were not sure yet how to decontaminate the street.

The puzzle here is why the officials view decontamination of the exterior of the house more difficult than the internal decontamination.  If the source inside of the house truly was the removed bottles, than the external airborne levels should quickly lower.

The decontamination of Radium is researched and documented, based off the limited information available, what issues officials perceive as the greatest obstacles to decontamination have yet to be revealed by the city.  A variety of research and decontamination projects have been completed in North America, a series of mild chloride washing and flotation experiments have showed that the +300 micron and 300 x 10 micron fractions can be remediated below a criterion level of 6 picoCuries per gram (pCi/g).

Decontamination and Remediation of Radium

In August, 1975, the Ministry of Health of the Province of Ontario at the request of one of the tenants of a building in a large Canadian city conducted a radiation survey of the third floor of the building.  The survey, showed that high radiation existed on the third and second floors and that significant contamination existed in some other parts of the six-floor building.  The contamination was identified as radium-226.

An investigation revealed that the building had been used during World War II for processing radium and also for some radium dial painting work.

In Pittsburgh in 2003, the Flannery Building near the University of Pittsburgh required decontamination and remediation, and contaminated materials were removed, and then prepared for disposal.
The building was constructed in 1911, and had long been acquainted with processing radium for commercial and medical use.

Science and education ministry inspectors believe the bottles contain radium, a radioactive material used in the past as self-luminous paint for watches, Kyodo News agency reported. It said the inspectors concluded that the radiation was not related to the Fukushima disaster because no cesium was detected in the bottles.  At this stage, it remained unclear whether the two radiation finds inside and outside the basement were linked.

Does the presence of Radium alone confirm claims contamination not from Fukushima?

Professor Masahiro Fukushi, the radiation specialist at Tokyo Metropolitan University who measured the fence’s radiation level prior to locating the bottles in the basement of the house, was one of the first experts who told TV broadcaster Tokyo Broadcasting System Inc. it is highly probable the radioactive isotope detected is radium-226.

He continued to explain to the newscast that because “this isotope is not used in nuclear power plants, it is not believed to have been emitted by the Fukushima plant’s wrecked reactors.” As if to add another possible source to the mix, ”Radium can be detected in some hot springs,”Fukushi added.

The claim that it could not be from Fukushima if it is Radium is very misleading as Radium is a decay product of U-238 and is not one of the isotopes used in the fuel, but can be produced by decaying U-238.  However small the probability, maybe someone should assess the implications of finding a deposited small amount of uranium on a city sirface that had already decayed into Radium, and incorporated itself with the sidewalk during the process yielding a weeks worth of decontamination efforts futile.

  •  How does radium get into the environment? - Radium occurs naturally in the environment. As a decay product of uranium and thorium, it is common in virtually all rock, soil, and water. Usually concentrations are very low. However, geologic processes can form concentrations of naturally radioactive elements, especially uranium and radium.
  • How does radium get into the environment from a nuclear reactor? - Radium can also be produced in the body from “parent” radionuclides (uranium and thorium).  All isotopes of radium are radioactive. As they decay, they emit radiation and form new radioactive elements, until they reach stable lead. Isotopes of radium decay to form different isotopes of radon.


Radium data continued at end

The next announcement was made following a probe by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology about the increase in the detection of airborne radiation to over 3 uSv/hr earlier in the day in a follow-up inspection hastily undertaken by the government, which had been confirmed after Nobuto Hosaka, mayor of the ward, reassured the public the radiation did not appear to be linked to the nuclear crisis in Fukushima.

Setagaya Mayor Nobuto Hosaka reported in the press conference that the ward obtained the owner’s consent and entered the house to measure radiation levels. The Mayor reported the search uncovered four old and dirty bottles in a mud-covered box underneath the floor.

The radiation level of the bottles reportedly exceeded 30 microsieverts per hour — higher than the maximum that could be measured with the experts’ devices.  Police were investigating the contents and whether the bottles violated laws regulating possession of radioactive materials.

Questions yet to be answered

Was there any indications aside from proximity led investigations to the house, which had been left out of any media coverage reports until after the Radium theory was proposed?

How/why would ‘Average Citizen’ come up with 4 bottles containing radioactive materials at such a high level of radioactivity?
It’s not easy to create your own 30 uSv/hr radioactive container without some experience or knowledge, and trained individuals are aware of the dangers of unsecured waste and are instructed standard protocol for the storage and disposal of private quantities.

If the authorities were investigating the possibility of violated laws, why was the homeowner not detained upon arriving at the property to give permission for entry?  Why is there no mention of any comment from the mysterious owner?

Mr. Hosaka said the radiation emitted by the bottles was so high that Setagaya officials and other investigators were unable to check what was inside them out of safety concerns.

An investigator from Japan’s science ministry, who was also at the house told a TV crew that officials managed to put the bottles inside a lead container made to block the radiation, and that the airborne levels around the house subsequently dropped significantly.  ”We don’t yet know what specific radioactive material is inside the bottles,” he said.

Questions yet to be answered

Why didn’t officials secure a potential dirty weapon source identified in an abandoned house?

It may not be a coincidence that nearly every report includes a statement about how consent was received to enter the house, considering it was perceived to be abandoned, it means officials claim to have waited until identifying the readings were coming from the house, and instead of entering it to locate a public health hazard, instead focused on identifying and locating the landowner for explicit information.  

An isolated source contained within multiple forms of containment is an unexpected element for the contamination found on the street, if it was detected externally it would be reasonable to assume that especially post-911 and after Fukushima authorities could have immediately entered the residence and secured a source which is considered a hazardous and potentially can be used for dirty weapons

The bottles were in a wooden crate and ‘covered with mud’. Reports deduced they appeared to have  been there for years, a lucky find under any conditions.  No data was released as to how the bottles were stored, and where the substance contained originated from, leaving the door for premature suggestions it might be a collected run-off, or improperly stored radioactive waste that is accumulating.

One of the details most experts are interested to learn is if the bottles are the source of the contamination, many do not think it likely that a handful of these bottles of radium could produce such a large contamination so far away with leaving any trace of handling, or a trail that would have led it to the inspectors long before a week had passed.

If they had been stored there for an extended period of time, how had the radiation increased so much in between the space when it was first reported, and after the readings showed the increase after decontamination efforts?

If the bottles really are the source, and are as radioactive as the ward officials postulate, then the levels should drop fairly significantly once it is removed, and the street decontamination would not be expected to be forseen as such a daunting task by the city

This data was only released as the story went international, and although the sequence of events and multiple changes in opinion about the source are believed by many to be a coincidence, but the government is not winning any allies by playing sidekick to a vigilant resourceful community who expects the same out of their officials.

Despite the governments lack of evidence for their new findings, instead of waiting for the bottles to be analyzed, as soon as the updated press release was posted, the international main-stream media showed up on cue apt to display their willingness to turn the news faucet on and off at will, when they decided immediately to pick up on the story of “radioactive materials were NOT from Fukushima”, and the story rocked headlines in nearly every major media source around the world

Questions yet to be answered

  • The sporadic displacement of the contamination is interesting,  all of the contamination was found above ground, in trees, leaves, the sidewalk, and a fence, but the government claims the source came from a BASEMENT, stored in a wooden box, contained in a collection of bottles.  the fence, the trees, the sidewalk, possibly a roof, but no mention of external high radiation readings on the house or soil and no mention of the levels of the box where the bottles were found?  
    • The box was noted to be wooden, and so are the fence and trees, so if it didn’t transfer through the box or soil, the source get from the basement, inside of a box, inside of bottles, to the sidewalk, fence, and TREES without contaminating the soil
    • How deep are the radioactive elements found in the tree if they were already transferred to the leaves?  
    • How many bottles, what size, how much volume, and how much contamination?
    • How did it get there, was it a personal collection (if so, why) and if not, is it excess stored radioactive debris from the surrounding areas? 
    • How did the source get from the basement, inside of a box, inside of bottles, to the sidewalk, fence, and TREES without contaminating the soil?
  • If those bottles had been down there for a long time, and were still that ‘hot’ (assumed above normal standards for private possession), how radioactive were they when they were placed down there?  

Decontamination and Remediation of Radium Cont…

Understanding the physical and chemical processes associated with materials containing uranium, thorium, and radium is important when addressing associated radiological risks.  The long-lived starting isotopes of these three isotopes, respectively thorium-232uranium-238, and uranium-235, have existed since the formation of the earth.  Uranium, radium, and thorium occur in three natural decay series, headed by uranium-238, thorium-232, and uranium-235, respectively.Natural uranium is not significantly radioactive, but uranium ore is 13 times more radioactive because of the radium and other daughter isotopes it contains.

This is evident at processing sites what was once a single, long decay series (for example the series for uranium-238) may be present as several smaller decay series headed by the longer-lived decay products of the original series (that is, headed by uranium-238, uranium-234, thorium-230, radium-226, and lead-210 in the case of uranium-238).  Not only are unstable radium isotopes significant radioactivity emitters, but as the next stage in the decay chain they also generate radon, a heavy, inert, naturally occurring radioactive gas, frequently found in homes and in soil.

Long-term exposure to radium increases the risk of developing several diseases. Inhaled or ingested radium increases the risk of developing such diseases as lymphoma, bone cancer, and diseases that affect the formation of blood, such as leukemia and aplastic anemia. These effects usually take years to develop. External exposure to radium’s gamma radiation increases the risk of cancer to varying degrees in all tissues and organs.

Uranium Decay Series - The 4n+2 chain of U-238 is commonly called the “radium series” (sometimes “uranium series”). Beginning with naturally occurring uranium-238, this series includes the following elements: astatine,bismuthleadpoloniumprotactinium,radiumradonthallium, and thorium.  

nuclide
historic name (short)
historic name (long)
decay mode
half-life
(a=year)
energy released, MeV
product of decay

238U
UI
Uranium I
α
4.468·109 a
4.270
234Th

234Th
UX1
Uranium X1
β−
24.10 d
0.273
234mPa

234mPa
UX2
Uranium X2,
Brevium
β− 99.84 %
IT 0.16 %
1.16 min
2.271
0.074
234U
234Pa

234Pa
UZ
Uranium Z
β−
6.70 h
2.197
234U

234U
UII
Uranium II
α
245500 a
4.859
230Th

230Th
Io
Ionium
α
75380 a
4.770
226Ra

226Ra
Ra
Radium
α
1602 a
4.871
222Rn

222Rn
Rn
Radon,
Radium Emanation
α
3.8235 d
5.590
218Po

218Po
RaA
Radium A
α 99.98 %
β− 0.02 %
3.10 min
6.115
0.265
214Pb
218At

218At
α 99.90 %
β− 0.10 %
1.5 s
6.874
2.883
214Bi
218Rn

218Rn
α
35 ms
7.263
214Po

214Pb
RaB
Radium B
β−
26.8 min
1.024
214Bi

214Bi
RaC
Radium C
β− 99.98 %
α 0.02 %
19.9 min
3.272
5.617
214Po
210Tl

214Po
RaC’
Radium C’
α
0.1643 ms
7.883
210Pb

210Tl
RaC”
Radium C”
β−
1.30 min
5.484
210Pb

210Pb
RaD
Radium D
β−
22.3 a
0.064
210Bi

210Bi
RaE
Radium E
β− 99.99987%
α 0.00013%
5.013 d
1.426
5.982
210Po
206Tl

210Po
RaF
Radium F
α
138.376 d
5.407
206Pb

206Tl
RaE”
Radium E”
β−
4.199 min
1.533
206Pb

206Pb
RaG
Radium G
-
stable
-
-

Source Articles:

http://www.yomiuri.co.jp/national/news/20111013-OYT1T00597.htm?from=popin
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacific-15285843
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203914304576628850526557420.html
http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/nn20111013x4.html
http://www.ead.anl.gov/pub/doc/natural-decay-series.pdf
http://www.ccnr.org/decay_U238.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Decay_chain
http://des.nh.gov/organization/commissioner/pip/factsheets/ard/documents/ard-ehp-22.pdf
http://www.ieer.org/fctsheet/uranium.html
http://www.japantoday.com/category/national/view/setagaya-radiation-likely-came-from-bottles-beneath-floor-of-unoccupied-house
http://www.japantoday.com/category/national/view/small-radiation-hotspot-found-in-tokyos-setagaya-ward
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203914304576628850526557420.html
http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/10/13/2452260/tokyo-radiation-hotspot-linked.html

Lucas W. Hickson is a nuclear researcher based in Chicago, Illinois.

Thursday, October 20, 11:00 am

Join at the parking lot outside the Bay, Guildford Mall, SW corner of 152
St. & 104 Ave.

For info on this rally, please email [email protected]

For background on the legal campaign to prosecute G.W. Bush, visit:

Lawyers against the War at www.lawyersagainstthewar.org;
Amnesty International/Canada at http://www.amnesty.ca/media2010.php?DocID=1006

click on “related documents” to view/download the brief) and the Center for Constitutional Rights, www.ccrjustice.org

Please be there to give him the welcome he deserves.

Canada urged to arrest and prosecute George W. Bush

October 14th, 2011 by Amnesty International

Overview

Amnesty International today urged Canadian authorities to arrest and either prosecute or extradite former US President George W. Bush for his role in torture, ahead of his expected visit to Canada on 20 October. Canada is required by its international obligations to arrest and prosecute former President Bush given his responsibility for crimes under international law including torture. Amnesty International submitted a memorandum to the Canadian authorities on 21 September 2011 outlining the case for his legal responsibilty. The violations took place during the CIA’s secret detention program between 2002 and 2009 – and include torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading-treatment and enforced disappearances. While President, George W. Bush authorized the use of a number of “enhanced interrogation techniques” against detainees held in the secret CIA program.

Full Text

Amnesty International today urged Canadian authorities to arrest and either prosecute or extradite former US President George W. Bush for his role in torture, ahead of his expected visit to Canada on 20 October.

“Canada is required by its international obligations to arrest and prosecute former President Bush given his responsibility for crimes under international law including torture,” said Susan Lee, Americas Director at Amnesty International.

“As the US authorities have, so far, failed to bring former President Bush to justice, the international community must step in. A failure by Canada to take action during his visit would violate the UN Convention against Torture and demonstrate contempt for fundamental human rights.”

Amnesty International submitted a memorandum to the Canadian authorities on 21 September 2011 that makes a substantial case for the former president’s legal responsibility for a series of human rights violations.

The violations took place during the CIA’s secret detention program between 2002 and 2009 – and include torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading-treatment and enforced disappearances.

While President, George W. Bush authorized the use of a number of “enhanced interrogation techniques” against detainees held in the secret CIA program.

The former President later specifically admitted to authorizing the “waterboarding” of several individuals whose subjection to this torture technique has been confirmed.

Detainees were subjected to waterboarding and a range of other “enhanced interrogation techniques” – including being forced to stay for hours in painful positions and sleep deprivation  – during the CIA’s secret detention program, set up under then-President Bush’s authorization.

The CIA Inspector General found that Zayn al Abidin Muhammed Husayn (known as Abu Zubaydah) and Khalid Sheikh Mohammed were subjected, between them, to at least 266 applications of waterboarding while in detention between 2002 and 2003.

Amnesty International’s submission also highlights further evidence of torture and other crimes under international law committed against detainees held under US military custody in Guantánamo, Afghanistan and Iraq.

“This is a crucial moment for Canada to demonstrate it is prepared to live up to its commitments and obligations with respect to human rights,” said Susan Lee. “Canada has been a leader in efforts to strengthen the international justice system and must now demonstrate that when it comes to accountability for human rights violations, no one and no country is above international law.”

Can Canada really arrest Dubya?

October 14th, 2011 by Global Research

In this occasional feature, the National Post tells you everything you need to know about a complicated issue. Today, Sarah Boesveld unpacks Amnesty International’s call Wednesday for Canadian authorities to arrest and either prosecute or extradite George W. Bush for war crimes:

Q Why is Amnesty International calling for the former president’s arrest? Why now?

A The group says Mr. Bush’s visit to Surrey, B.C., next Friday to attend an economic summit is the perfect chance to nab him for events during the CIA’s secret detention program between 2002 and 2009, which allegedly include “torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading-treatment and enforced disappearances.” Canada is “obligated” to act, said Susan Lee, Amnesty’s Americas Director. “A failure by Canada to take action during his visit would violate the UN Convention against torture and demonstrate contempt for fundamental human rights.” Greater urgency comes since the U.S. hasn’t acknowledged the crimes, added Alex Neve, the secretary general of Amnesty International Canada. This is the first time Amnesty has been so specific in a call for a Canadian visit, he said. “George Bush is not a sitting president anymore … He’s also not coming for official UN meetings, he doesn’t have any kind of diplomatic immunity.” On Sept. 21, Amnesty submitted an “extensive legal brief”to the government, backed up by “thousands of pages” of documents.

Q Does Canada really have the power to arrest him?

A No. The International Criminal Court has no jurisdiction over Mr. Bush because the U.S. has not ratified it. Canada is a member, but authorities here can’t legally detain him on the ICC’s behalf, noted Peter Ferguson, a professor of American politics at the University of Western Ontario. Waterboarding, the interrogation technique that gives subjects the sensation of drowning, was not illegal when Mr. Bush authorized its use on prisoners, Prof. Ferguson said. Though President Barack Obama changed the policy, that doesn’t mean Mr. Bush can be tried today. “In international law, there’s a difference between being forced to act and able to act,” said Dan Bousfield, an assistant professor of political science at Western. “We’re not directly responsible, and as far as I know there’s no outstanding warrant for his arrest abroad.”

Q Would Canada actually arrest Mr. Bush, even if it could?

A “Politically it’d be suicide,” said Prof. Ferguson. “A U.S. president is not going to sit in an [international] prison. It would be a military action. They’d go for a diplomatic response but only for so long – 24 hours or less.” There’s no closer friend to the U.S. than Canada, said Alan Dowd, an Indianapolis-based fellow with the Fraser Institute who specializes in security issues. “Were it to happen, it would have a terrible, chilling effect on U.S.Canada cooperation.” A fresh Conservative majority government won’t help the cause, added Prof. Bousfield.

Q What does the government have to say about it?

A Amnesty International has yet to hear anything from the Canadian government, Mr. Neve said. Immigration and Citizenship Minister Jason Kenney leapt into the conversation Wednesday, saying in an emailed statement Amnesty International “cherry picks cases to publicize based on ideology. This kind of stunt helps explain why so many respected human rights advocates have abandoned Amnesty International.” Mr. Kenney, who has sparred with Amnesty before, questioned why it did not seek a court order barring Cuban leader Fidel Castro who, according to the group engaged in “arbitrary arrests, detention, and criminal prosecution,” as well as “unfair sentences, harassment and intimidation of critics,” and use of the death penalty for individuals “trying to flee the island,” Mr. Kenney said. A spokesperson for Justice Minister Rob Nicholson said the RCMP handles war crimes investigations.

Q What does all this say about Amnesty International?

A Some would say it has delegitimized it, although other prominent human rights organizations, such as Human Rights Watch and the New York-based Center for Constitutional Rights, have also called for an investigation into Mr. Bush. But there has been a growing chorus speaking out against Amnesty, loudly after the group came under fire in February 2010, for its relationship with former Guantanamo Bay detainee and jihadist Moazzam Begg. Salman Rushdie accused the group of “moral bankruptcy” and said it had done “incalculable damage” to its reputation. Author Christopher Hitchens pilloried the group’s “degeneration and politicization.” Since 9/11, Amnesty International has changed its mandate from one that primarily advocates for people imprisoned in undemocratic countries to one that takes on broader international human rights issues.

Request that George W. Bush be barred from Canada

October 14th, 2011 by Lawyers Against the War (LAW)

LAWYERS AGAINS T THE WAR
Canada 1 604 738 0338
[email protected]   www.lawyersagainstthewar.org
George W. Bush: request for law enforcement 1
 

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Superintendent Philipe Thibodaux
Crimes against Humanity & War Crimes Section
A Division & Citizenship and Immigration
155 McArthur Rd.
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0R2

Tel: 613 994 6912
Fax: 613 949 4768
Email: [email protected]
 

Dear Superintendent Thibodaux;

Re: George W. Bush Visit to Surrey BC Canada on October 20, 2011.

George W. Bush is scheduled to visit Surrey BC Canada on or before October 20, 2011 as a guest of the Surrey Board of Trade and Mayor Diane Watts. 

Request that George W. Bush be barred from Canada 

We are writing to report that:
 

  • George W. Bush, former president of the United States and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces, is inadmissible to Canada under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA), section 35(1)(a) because of overwhelming evidence that he has committed, outside Canada, torture and other offences referred to in sections 4 to 7 of the Crimes against Humanity and War Crimes Act (CAHWC); and,
     
  • George W. Bush is also inadmissible on security grounds for, “engaging in or instigating the subversion by force of [Iraq and Afghanistan] any government.” pursuant to s. 34(1) (b) of the IRPA; and,
     
  • George W. Bush is inadmissible as a senior official of a government that engaged in, “systematic or gross human rights violations, or a war crime or a crime against humanity within the meaning of subsections 6(3) to (5) of the CAHWC.
    If there are reasonable grounds to believe a person has been complicit in any of these crimes, entry to Canada must be denied. Reasonable grounds, according to the Supreme Court of Canada are “something more than suspicion but less than…proof on the balance of probabilities.”
     

Request for Investigation of torture allegations

We request that the RCMP War Crimes Section (RCMP/WCS) immediately take the following steps:
 

  • begin an investigation of George W. Bush for aiding, abetting and counseling torture between November 13, 2001 and November 2008 at Guantánamo Bay prison in Cuba, Abu Grab prison in Iraq, Bigram prison in Afghanistan and other places; and,
  • Advise the Prime Minister, Attorney General of Canada and Ministers of Immigration and Public Safety that the George W. Bush administration, “…engaged in torture and other war crimes and crimes against humanity,” and therefore G.W. Bush is also inadmissible under section 35(1) (b) of the IRPA.
     

Under sections 4 to 7 of the CAHWCA, “crimes against humanity” include murder, enforced disappearance, deportation, imprisonment, torture and imprisonment or other severe deprivation of physical liberty in violation of fundamental rules of international law, committed against any civilian population or any identifiable group. War crimes include willful killing, torture and inhuman treatment, unlawful confinement and willfully depriving a prisoner of war or other protected person of fair trial rights.

Overwhelming evidence of the involvement of George W. Bush and other members of the Bush administration in torture and other CAHWCA crimes is widely available. The allegations coupled with the supporting evidence have triggered the legal duty—if Mr. Bush enters Canada—to: 

1. ensure that George W. Bush does not receive safe haven from prosecution for torture and other CAHWCA crimes in Canada; and,
2. ensure a thorough and transparent investigation of the allegations of torture and other CAHWCA crimes against George W. Bush; and,
3. ensure that George W. Bush is prosecuted for torture either in Canada, or extradited to a country willing and able to prosecute; and,
4. secure the presence of George W. Bush in Canada for the investigation and prosecution or extradition for prosecution as required by law.
 

Many have concluded that the responsibility of George W. Bush and the Bush Administration for torture and other criminal atrocities has already been conclusively established. Canada‟s duty to condemn, investigate, prosecute and punish torture and to take effective action to combat impunity for the atrocities committed by the Bush administration, is unavoidable. 

Then U.N. General Assembly President Miguel d’Escoto Brockmann, on March 4, 2009 concluded, 

“The illegality of the use of force against Iraq cannot be doubted as it runs contrary to the prohibition of the use of force in article 2(4) of the U.N. Charter. All pretended justifications notwithstanding, the [Bush Administration] aggressions against Iraq and Afghanistan and their occupations constitute atrocities that must be condemned and repudiated by all who believe in the rule of law in international relations.
 

“Reliable and independent experts estimate that over one million Iraqis have lost their lives as a direct result of the illegal invasion of their country. The various UN human rights monitors have prepared report after report documenting the unending litany of violations from crimes of war, rights of children and women, social rights, collective punishment and treatment of prisoners of war and illegal detention of civilians. These must be addressed to bring an end to the scandalous present impunity.”1 (Emphasis added) 

U. N. Special Rapporteur on human rights and counter-terrorism, Martin Scheinin, in February 2009 concluded, “…the United States has created a comprehensive system of extraordinary renditions, prolonged and secret detention, and practices that violate the prohibition against torture and other forms of ill- 1

George W. Bush: request for law enforcement treatment….States must not aid or assist in the commission of acts of torture, or recognize such practices as lawful, …Under international human rights law, States are under a positive obligation to conduct independent investigations into alleged violations of the right to life, freedom from torture or other inhuman treatment, enforced disappearances or arbitrary detention, to bring to justice those responsible for such acts, and to provide reparations where they have participated in such violations.”2 (Emphasis added)

Canada‟s international legal duties specifically prohibit treating the torture and CAHWCA crimes of which Bush stands accused, as legal: ignoring the IRPA and allowing Bush into, and then out of Canada, would be tantamount to treating torture as legal.
The RCMP have a common law and a statutory duty to investigate and prevent torture and other CAHWCA crimes.3 In addition, the RCMP must carry out the mandate of the War Crimes Program to, “…ensure that the Government of Canada has properly addressed all allegations of war crimes…”

To do this, the RCMP must, “…with the support of DOJ [Department of Justice], investigating allegations involving reprehensible acts that could lead to a possible criminal prosecution.”4 The War Crimes Program was established specifically to meet the challenge of investigating crimes committed outside Canadian territory by foreign nationals. We are aware that because of the nature of CAHWC crimes, suspected perpetrators will often be high ranking civilian and military officials and will include former heads of state. It goes without saying that the RCMP are duty bound to apply the law equally to such suspects.
.
Lawyers Against the War is ready to provide references to evidence of torture. We are confident that other organizations such as the Canadian Centre for International Justice, the Center for Constitutional Rights, Amnesty International/Canada, the European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights, Human Rights Watch and other individuals and organizations are also ready to assist by providing evidence and analyses of the applicable law.
 

Request for Information

LAW seeks information to clarify questions about the procedures followed by Canadian officials to determine the admissibility to Canada of George W. Bush and other suspected war criminals or security risks. We reiterate our earlier request that the RCMP/WCS provide the following information:

1. What actions have been taken by the RCMP/WCS and other officials in response to reports by LAW5 and others6 that George W. Bush is inadmissible to Canada because of overwhelming evidence of his involvement in torture and other CAHWCA crimes?
2 Report of the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism, Martin Scheinin, A/HRC/10/3, 4 February 2009.
3 RCMP Act, R.S. 1985, c. R-10, s. 18 and Royal Canadian Mounted Police Regulations, 1988, SOR/88-361, s. 17. See also “[common law] recognizes the existence of a broad conventional or customary duty in the established constabulary as an arm of the State to protect the life, limb and property of the subject.” Shacht v. R. [1973] 1 O.R. 221 at pp. 231-32.
4 Overview of Operations, mandates and Structure, Canada‟s Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes Program: http://www.justice.gc.ca/en/ps/wc/oms-ams.html
5 Lawyers against the War has provided letters to the War Crimes and Crimes against Humanity Program since 2004 and most recently on August 25, 2011. LAW‟s August 25, 2011 letter can be accessed at
http://www.lawyersagainstthewar.org/letters/LAW_letter_re_George_Bush__20110825.pdf

We thank you in advance for a prompt reply to the important requests made and questions posed in this letter.
 

Respectfully,
 

Gail Davidson, Lawyers Against the War

Copied to:

Prime Minster Stephen Harper;
Attorney General Rob Nicholson
Minister of Immigration Jason Kenney
Minister of Public Safety Vic Toews
 

Nycole Turmel, interim Leader of the New Democratic Party, [email protected]
Joe Comartin MP, NDP Justice Critic, [email protected]
Don Davies MP, NDP Citizenship, Immigration critic, dondavies.ndp.ca
Paul Dewar MP, NDP Foreign Affairs Critic, [email protected]
Jasbir Sandhu MP, NDP Public Safety Critic, [email protected]

Mr. Rob Rae, MP, Interim Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada, [email protected]
Mr. Irwin Cotler MP, Liberal Justice Critic, [email protected]
Mr. Francis Scarpaleggia MP, Liberal Public Safety Critic, [email protected]
Mr. Kevin Lamoureux MP, Liberal Immigration Critic, [email protected]
Mr. Dominic LeBlanc MP, Liberal Foreign Affairs Critic, [email protected]

Ms. Elizabeth May MP, Leader of the Green Party of Canada, [email protected]

Jean Francois Fortin MP, Bloq Quebecois Foreign Affairs Critic, [email protected]
André Bellavance MP, Bloq Quebecois Citizenship and Immigration Critic, [email protected]
Maria Mourani MP, Bloq Quebecois Justice and Public Safety Critic, [email protected]

Mr. Juan Méndez, UN Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, [email protected]

Mr. Alex Neve, Amnesty International Canada, [email protected]

Mayor Diane Watts of Surrey BC Fax: 604-591-5175 [email protected]

RCMP Commissioner William J.S. Elliott, [email protected]

Notes

1 Address by H.E. Miguel D‟Escoto Brockmann, President of The United Nations General Assembly, to the Human Rights Council, at paras. 25 & 26, Geneva 4 March 2009.
http://www.freethefive.org/downloads/descoto30409.pdf

2 What advice have the RCMP/WCS given to the offices of the Prime Minister, Attorney General of Canada, Minister of Immigration and/or the Minister of Public Safety regarding the inadmissibility of George W. Bush and the proper interpretation of the IRPA?

3. What policies and procedures are followed by all officials to investigate complaints and determine inadmissibility under the IRPA sections 34 and 35, including the RCMP, the Canadian Borders Services Agency (CBSA) and the Ministers of Immigration and Public Safety?

4. What is the role of the RCMP/WCS in the investigation and/or determination of admissibility to Canada under the IRPA, ss. 34 and 35?
N.B. Your predecessor, Inspector Ron Charlebois, advised LAW in March 2009 that the RCMP/WC policy was to restrict investigations to allegations of torture and CAHWC crimes against “persons…present (living) in Canada on an ongoing basis.” LAW (in letters of March 24 and 11, 2009) requested a copy of that policy and disclosure of when and by whom the policy was created and what officials carry out and supervise the policy. We have yet to receive a reply.

5. What investigations have been or are being conducted of Mr. Bush‟ inadmissibility under the IRPA s. 34(1) (b)? As you know, Mr. Bush is prima facie inadmissible under this section as the person who authorized and directed the overthrow by force of the governments of Afghanistan and Iraq.

6 The letter and brief submitted jointly by the Center for Constitutional Rights and the Canadian Centre for International Justice are available at (letter) http://ccrjustice.org/files/2011.09.29%20Cover%20Letter%20to%20Canadian%20Minister%20of%20Justice.pdf  , and at (brief) http://ccrjustice.org/files/2011.09.29%20Bush%20Canada%20Indictment.pdf . The brief of Amnesty International is available at http://www.amnesty.ca/media2010.php?DocID=1006

 

The Democratic Party: An Insidious Threat to the Occupy Wall Street Movement

October 14th, 2011 by Prof. Ismael Hossein-Zadeh

The threat I am referring to is not that of being pepper-sprayed, arrested, beaten or imprisoned. It is a different type of threat: a stealthy challenger that while pretending to advance the goals of the Occupy Movement tends to undermine it from within—more or less like the proverbial elephant in the room. I am referring to the threat of preemption, or cooptation, posed by the Democratic Party and union officials. In light of their unsavory record of undermining the revolutionary energy of social movements, projections of sympathy for the anti-Wall Street protesters by the White House, the Democratic Party officials and union leaders can be viewed only with suspicion.

Expressing sympathy for the protester, President Obama recently stated: “I think people are frustrated, and the protesters are giving voice to a more broad-based frustration about how our financial system works.” At the same time he also defended the decision to bail out banks and other Wall Street speculators, arguing that the decision was necessitated by the need to salvage our financial system. It is obvious that, as usual, the president is talking from both side of his mouth.

On the same day (October 6th) that the president projected sympathy for the protesters, Vice President Biden also expressed similar sentiments. Comparing the Wall Street protests with the Tea Party, he stated: “The Tea Party started, why? TARP. They thought it was unfair – we were bailing out the big guy.” The vice president’s reference to the Tea Party is by no means fortuitous; there are clear indications the Democrats are trying to utilize the Occupy movement the way the Republicans do the Tea Party.“The mushrooming protests could be the start of a populist movement on the left that counterbalances the surge of the Tea Party on the right, and closes what some Democrats fear is an ‘enthusiasm gap,’” reportedthe New York Timeson Friday, October 7th.

Projections of sympathy for the Occupy movement have not been limited to the White House. Many officials of the Democratic Party have either personally appeared at the Zuccotti Park to express support or sent statements of support for the protesters.Likewise, a number of union leadersjoined a large protest rally held in New York City’s Foley Square on October 5th to show sympathy for the protesters.

Then there are the liberal political punditsand media outlets such as the New York Times that are also trying the build bridges between the Democratic Partyand the Occupy movement in an effort to channel the protesters’ energy to the party’s electoral machine. For example, the New York Times’ columnist Paul Krugman recently wrote: “And there are real political opportunities here. Not, of course, for today’s Republicans. . . . But Democrats are being given what amounts to a second chance. The Obama administration squandered a lot of potential good will early on by adopting banker-friendly policies. . . . Now, however, Mr. Obama’s party has a chance for a do-over.”

On the face of it there is nothing wrong with the Democratic Party officials or union leaders expressing support for the protesters. In light of their actual economic policies, however, that support can be characterized only as hypocritical. The Democrats are as much responsible for the economic problems that have triggered the protests as their Republican counterparts. The Obama administration has played an especially destructive role in pursuing a devastating neoliberal austerity agenda in term of bailing out the Wall Street gamblers, extending the Bush tax breaks for the wealthy, expanding the US wars of choice—and then cutting vital social spending to pay for the financial resources thus usurped.

Equally blameworthy are union bureaucrats who have enabled the White House and the Congress in the implementation of such brutal austerity programs. Hollow posturing aside, the AFL-CIO has opposed neither the neoliberal austerity policies at home nor the imperialist wars of aggression abroad. Well-paid union officials have not even seriously challenged factory closures; nor have they earnestly resisted brutal cuts in workers’ wages and benefits.

In projecting sympathy for the Occupy Movement, the Democrats are essentially trying to have their cake and eat it too! Their efforts to express support for the protests can be interpreted only as opportunistic and utilitarian: to identify themselves with the rapidly spreading popular protests against the status quo, to mask the Obama administration’s neoliberal devotion to Wall Street, and to harness the energy of the protesters in order to garner their vote in the 2012 elections.

If successful, this would not be the first time the Democratic Party would have derailed and dissipated social struggles for change; it hasa long record of such policies of betrayal, going back all the way to the Populist Movement of the late 19th century. Barack Obama’s promise of change in the 2008 elections in pursuit of garnering the grassroots’ vote was only the latest of the Democrats’ strategy of playing the good cop in order to contain radical energy.Two years earlier they had managed to undermine a vigorous antiwar movement by voicing the protesters’ demands to end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan if they won the majority seats in the Congress. Having thus gained the control of both houses of the Congress in the mid-term election of 2006, they shamelessly backed away from their promise to antiwar voters.

One can only hope that the Occupy Movement is armed with the knowledge of the Democratic Party’s record of cooptation and betrayal of radical movements; and will therefore chart a political movement of the working people and other grassroots independent of both parties of big business.

Ismael Hossein-zadeh is Professor Emeritus of Economics, Drake University, Des Moines, Iowa. He is the author of The Political Economy of U.S. Militarism (Palgrave-Macmillan 2007) and the Soviet Non-capitalist Development: The Case of Nasser’s Egypt (Praeger Publishers 1989).

El gobierno de Barack Obama siempre tiene más dinero para intentar “comprarse” la soberanía de Cuba. Esta vez son cerca de nueve millones que se regalaron en septiembre a nueve “contratistas” en su mayoría ya firmemente establecidos en el multimillonario negocio de la “democracia” orientada y subsidiada desde Washington.

 Son precisamente 8,656,177 dólares en subsidios que se embolsaran los ganadores de esta macabra lotería con la cual Washington persigue sus objetivos de desestabilización y anexionismo  mientras mantiene su bloqueo genocido.

El Cuba Money Project, sitio web del investigador norteamericano Tracey Eaton indica que ocho son organizaciones supuestamente sin fines de lucro y una empresa de ayuda remunerada al “desarrollo internacional” que se ganaron estos premios cuyo uso se quedará rodeado de un cómodo secreto. 

La firma commercial Creative Associates International, experta en conseguir el dinero del contribuyente, recoge dos millones de dólares para su tarea de “contratista” de la subversión. 

 The International Relief and Development, the International Republican Institute (el famoso IRI) y la Pan American Development Foundation, reciben todos una misma cantidad: exctamente 693 069 dólares, para enseñar a los cubanos lo que tienen que pensar.

El IRI el IRI es financiado yambién por el Fondo Nacional para la Democracia (NED, por sus siglas en inglés), el mecanismo CIA para financiar “abiertamente” a la clientela de los servicios de inteligencia. A través del IRI, el gobierno norteamericano paga cabecillas contrarrevolucionarios, entre otras cosas otorgando “premios” a las figuras de la “disidencia” que sobrecumplen sus tareas de propaganda en el exterior.

Sospechosamente, otra organización, el Instituto para el Reporte sobre la Guerra y la Paz (the Institute for War & Peace Reporting, o IWPR)  un principiante en el tema Cuba, recoge  medio millón de dólares.

La empresa fue anteriormente “contratista” en Afganistan, Azerbaidjan y las Filipinas.

Según su sitio web, citado por Tracey Eaton, la firma se dedica entre otras cosas a orientar la “prensa local”, un propósito que señala una operación más de injerencia “noticiosa” de parte de una empresa comercial.

Freedom House, un viejo beneficiario de las bondades federales que incluso crió a Frank Calzon, se traga 422,796 billetes mientras Development Research Center (DRC) agarra otros 376,237.

Queda 213,582 para la seudo ONG  aparentemente religiosa Evangelical Christian Humanitarian Outreach (ECHO) que se dedica a difamar a Cuba en temas de religión.

La atribución de estas cantidades importantes de dinero a quienes viven del cuento cubano, ocurre apenas unas semanas después que el estafador Felipe Sixto salga de la cárcel por el robo de medio millón de dólares cuando administraba los fondos así atribuidos al Center for a Free Cuba del ya mencionado agente CIA Frank Calzón.

Sixto cumplió la sentencia de 30 meses de prisión para este robo mientras a su jefe no le paso nada. El crimen ocurrió mientras se encontraba de “cajero” en la USAID, Adolfo Franco, quién entretanto se encontró otras tareas con el Partido Repúblicano.

Esa nueva distribución de millones ocurre cuando Estados Unidos atraviesa una grave crisis económica que pone a muchos de sus ciudadanos en situaciones a menudo críticas sin que puedan contar con un tan generoso apoyo.

Both the US media and the Obama administration continue to describe the October 2001 invasion of Afghanistan as a war of “self-defense’. 

The legal argument used by Washington and NATO to invade Afghanistan was that the September 11 attacks constituted an undeclared “armed attack” “from abroad” by an unnamed foreign power, and that consequently “the laws of war” apply, allowing the nation under attack, to strike back in the name of “self-defense”.

To this date, however, there is no proof that Al Qaeda was behind the 9/11 attacks. Neither is there evidence that Afghanistan as a Nation State was behind or in any way complicit in the 9/11 attacks.

The Afghan government in the weeks following 9/11, offered on two occasions, through diplomatic channels to deliver Osama bin Laden to US justice, if there were preliminary evidence of his involvement in the attacks. These offers were refused by Washington.

Ten years later, Afghanistan is a country which has been destroyed. Its economy and institutions are shattered. Its social infrastructure was never rebuilt. What we dealing with is a pretext and justification to commit extensive war crimes against a country which does not, by any stretch of the imagination  constitute a threat to the security of America and the Western World.

We bring to the attention of our readers a compendium of selected articles and videos (2010-2011) on Afghanistan which document the causes as well as the dramatic consequences of the US-NATO led war on an impoverished country of Central Asia.

It is our hope that this material will also be useful to college, university and high school students.

Michel Chossudovsky, Global Research, October 2011

 
ARTICLES AND VIDEO ON AFGHANISTAN


U.S. And NATO Escalate World’s Deadliest War On Both Sides Of Afghan-Pakistani Border
- by Rick Rozoff – 2011-03-01

Drone missile attacks conducted by the CIA killed in the neighborhood of 1,000 people in Pakistan last year


Afghanistan: Wealth, Corruption and Criminality Amidst Mass Poverty
- by Prof. Marc W. Herold – 2010-09-25

Afghanistan is ranked he worst place in the world for public sanitation


Afghan War: Petraeus Expands U.S. Military Presence Throughout Eurasia
- by Rick Rozoff – 2010-07-05

Petraeus took charge of soldiers from fifty nations occupying a conquered country…


Did 9/11 Justify the War in Afghanistan?
- by Prof. David Ray Griffin – 2010-06-25

Will the war in Afghanistan turn out to be “Obama’s Vietnam”?


Afghanistan: Thirty-two Years of War. Ten Years of Illegal Occupation
 
- by James Corbett – 2011-10-07


VIDEO: Afghanistan: Ten Years of Illegal Occupation
Special Feature Report now on GRTV
- by James Corbett, Rick Rozoff, Michel Chossudovsky – 2011-10-07


VIDEO: 10 Years of War in Afghanistan: A Crime Against Humanity
Important new interview now on GRTV
- by Michel Chossudovsky – 2011-10-07


VIDEO: On the 10th Anniversary of NATO’s Occupation of Afghanistan
Watch the statement on GRTV
- by Malalai Joya – 2011-10-07


October 7, 2001: America and NATO’s Decision to Invade Afghanistan. The Pretext to Wage a “Just War”
 
- by Prof. Michel Chossudovsky – 2011-10-07


VIDEO: What is the True Cost of the Afghanistan War?
Find out now on GRTV
- by Tony Benn – 2011-09-21

Pentagon Allows “Near Slavery” Conditions Among Foreign Workers in Iraq and Afghanistan
 
- by Sherwood Ross – 2011-09-01

Occupied Afghanistan: The Attack on the British Council in Kabul
The attack was on the 92nd anniversary of Afghanistan’s independence from Britain in 1919
- by Felicity Arbuthnot – 2011-08-21

Helicopter Shootdown in Afghanistan Hits Navy SEALs
 
- by Patrick Martin – 2011-08-08


US Afghan Strategy: Senseless and Merciless
 
- by Rick Rozoff – 2011-07-22


Prince Harry of Wales Returns to Afghanistan
 
- by Felicity Arbuthnot – 2011-07-19


Why the US Won’t Leave Afghanistan
 
- by Pepe Escobar – 2011-07-13


Afghanistan: Victory in Defeat
 
- by Eric Walberg – 2011-06-30

Vietnam versus Afghanistan: Victory in Defeat
 
- by Eric Walberg – 2011-06-30


Pentagon Demands Continuation of US Surge in Afghanistan
 
- by Bill Van Auken – 2011-06-22


The Anglo-American Endgame for Afghanistan
- by M.K. Bhadrakumar – 2011-06-16


VIDEO: 10 Years Too Many: US and UK Must End Afghan War
Watch now on GRTV
- by David Swanson, George Galloway – 2011-06-14


Afghanistan: Why Civilians are Killed? A People’s War: Not a “War on Terror”
 
- by Prof. James Petras – 2011-06-09


New Silk Road could revitalize war-torn Afghanistan
 
- by Prof. Li Xiguang – 2011-06-07


Empty words over hopeless Afghan war
 
- by ­Aleksey Pushkov – 2011-06-07


Afghanistan: Losing the war
 
- by Rizwan Asghar – 2011-06-07


VIDEO: The Last Word on Osama Bin Laden
Latest Corbett Report now on GRTV
- by James Corbett – 2011-05-24


Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Canadian War Crimes in Afghanistan
 
- by Prof. Michael Keefer – 2011-04-24


US atrocities reach all time high in Afghanistan
 
- by Zia Sarhadi – 2011-04-23


Military Surge in Afghanistan Launches Reign of Terror
U.S. officer: ‘You have to show up at their door … and start killing people’
- by Brian Becker – 2011-04-21


Afghan History: The Central Asian Grand Chessboard
 
- by Dean Henderson – 2011-04-20


Afghan History Suppressed: Islamists, Heroin and the CIA
Part I
- by Dean Henderson – 2011-04-10


Imagine Canada’s Conservative Nightmare
 
- by Stefan Christoff – 2011-04-07


Afghanistan: A Country, Not a War
 
- by David Swanson – 2011-04-05


VIDEO: The Difference Between a “Good Arab” and a “Bad Arab”
Breaking through Media Lies on Libya. Now on GRTV.
- by Michel Collon – 2011-04-04

Afghanistan: On Visiting an Unwinnable War
 
- by David Swanson – 2011-03-30


Obama Lacks Clarity on Afghan War
 
- by Ray McGovern – 2011-03-29


The Kill Team
How U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan murdered innocent civilians
- by Rolling Stone – 2011-03-29


Killing Civilians in Afghanistan is Terrorism
 
- by Pat Kennelly – 2011-03-24


Peace is not yours to give, Mr. President
But hope is certainly yours to take away
- by Kathleen Kirwin – 2011-03-16


VIDEO: US Army’s Illegal Psy-Ops Against Visiting Senators in Afghanistan
Breaking news on GRTV
- 2011-02-25

Dozens Slaughtered by US Forces in Afghanistan-Pakistan Air Attacks
 
- by Patrick O’Connor – 2011-02-23


Afghanistan: Sovereignty and Military Occupation
46 Countries, 155,000 foreign troops
- 2011-02-11


More Evidence of US War Crimes
 
- by Patrick Martin – 2011-01-24


US-NATO Killings of Civilians in Afghanistan
 
- by Prof Marc W. Herold – 2011-01-14


Obama orders new Afghan surge
 
- by Bill Van Auken – 2011-01-07


U.S. Employs Afghan War To Build Global NATO
 
- by Rick Rozoff – 2011-01-06


Afghanistan: From The British Empire to the NATO Invasion: “Blind Man Walking on a Roof.”
- by Scott Taylor – 2011-01-04


NATO Trains Afghan Army To Guard Asian Pipeline
 
- by Rick Rozoff – 2010-12-29

Afghanistan: “Open for Business”
 
- by Michael Skinner – 2010-12-26


2011: U.S. And NATO To Extend And Expand Afghan War
 
- by Rick Rozoff – 2010-12-25

Afghanistan War: The Crucible for Reorienting Canadian Foreign Policy
 
- by David McKee – 2010-12-17


US spy agencies paint grim picture of Afghan war
 
- by Bill Van Auken – 2010-12-16

Canada’s Role in Afghanistan
‘Ask Afghans what would help them, don’t ask Karzai’
- by John Riddell – 2010-12-16


The March to War: Was September 11 2001 the Start of World War III?
 
- by Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya – 2010-12-11


Pentagon Lies and Afghan Civilian Deaths: The Unspoken Truth
 
- by Prof. Marc W. Herold – 2010-12-08


U.S. And NATO Prolong And Expand Greater Afghan War
 
- by Rick Rozoff – 2010-12-02

Afghanistan: Destroying their property and insulting their intelligence
 
- by Rep. Lynn Woolsey – 2010-12-01

Extension of Afghan Military Deployment
Stirs Debate and Protests in Canada
- by Tim Kennelly, Roger Annis – 2010-12-01

Afghan Trainee Kills Six US Troops
 
- by Bill Van Auken – 2010-12-01


Who’s Who in Afghanistan? Creating a New Impostor
 
- by Boris Volkhonsky – 2010-11-29


Afghanistan is About Perpetual War
 
- by Harvey Wasserman – 2010-11-26


NATO and South Asian security: NATO Plants Itself In South Asia For The Long Haul
 
- by M. K. Bhadrakumar – 2010-11-26

Afghanistan: What next?
 
- by Samson Simon Sharaf – 2010-11-22


NATO: Afghan War Model For Future 21st Century Operations
 
- by Rick Rozoff – 2010-11-19


For more Global Research articles on Afghanistan click here

http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=newsHighlights&newsId=40

The Occupy Iran Fast and Furious Plot

October 14th, 2011 by Pepe Escobar

That Mecca of counter-revolution and hatred for the Arab Spring – also known as the House of Saud – can hardly believe their luck. It’s Christmas in October – as the United States government has just handed it the perfect gift; in the excited words of US Attorney General Eric Holder, “A deadly plot directed by factions of the Iranian government to assassinate a foreign ambassador on US soil with explosives.”

Saudi Prince Turki al-Faisal, former ambassador to Washington, former head of Saudi intelligence, former great buddy of Osama bin Laden, took no time to tell a conference in London, “The burden of proof and the amount of evidence in the case is overwhelming, and clearly shows official Iranian responsibility for this. This is unacceptable. Somebody in Iran will have to pay the price.”

So “Iran” – the whole country – has already been delivered to the guillotine by the Washington/Riyadh axis, even as the Justice Department’s murky Wag the Dog-style story – Operation Red Coalition (no, you can’t make that stuff up) – requires increasing suspension of disbelief.

Operation Red Coalition centers on one Mansour Arabsiar, a 56-year-old car salesman from Corpus Christi, Texas, holding both Iranian and US passports, and an Iran-based co-conspirator, Gholam Shakuri, an alleged member of the Qods force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC).

United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) director Robert Mueller insisted the allegedly Iran-masterminded terror plot, in his own words, “reads like the pages of a Hollywood script”. Yet this Fast and Furious spin-off would be hurled at the garbage can in any self-respecting Hollywood script conference.

Faster, muchachos – kill, kill

The US government expects an unsuspecting world to believe that a washed-up car salesman in Texas was tasked by a select intelligence arm of the Iranian government to fish for anyone who looked like a Mexican drug gangster and then order them a US$1.5 million hit on the Saudi ambassador in Washington – in the meantime promising them unfettered access to “tons of opium”.

Yet in the Sealed Amended Complaint against Arabsiar and Shakuri, signed by FBI special agent Robert Woloszyn, there is absolutely nothing specifically stating the involvement of the Iranian government, at the highest or at any level.

According to the US government narrative, Arabsiar was foolish enough to trust an infiltrated Drug Enforcement Agency agent who posed as a member of the Zetas Mexican drug cartel. He told this agent and his buddies he was the nephew of a Tehran high official – and that he was acting on behalf of the highest echelons.

So we are asked to believe that an Iranian general asks a Dumb and Dumber relative in the US to go contract a drug cartel for a political hit – as if US intelligence would never be able to track the whole thing back to him, especially after the matter of $100,000 wired to the US, allegedly from Iran, to a guy convicted of check fraud, as the down payment for the hit.

Beyond any ideological bias, anyone who knows how professional the IRGC and the Qods force can be cannot but dismiss this as utter rubbish – especially as part of a complex international operation involving Iran, its mortal foe the US, Mexico and Saudi Arabia. By the way, Arabsiar “confessed” to all this after 12 days of non-stop interrogation (waterboarding, anyone?)

Then there’s the target. According to the Department of Justice, the target was not the US. Thus attacking a House of Saud ambassador – a “precious” ally – on US soil can only be explained by a death wish exhibited by seriously deranged, suicidal Iranians bent on inviting a US strike, nuclear or otherwise.

To believe that a Mexican drug cartel would invest in a troublesome political hit in the US capital expecting to collect a bundle of opium (from “liberated” Afghanistan) is also a non-starter. But the picture changes if one considers the benefits for the Mujahideen-e-Kalq – the fundamentalist, terrorist organization that wants to bring down the Islamic Republic. Or the possible benefits for a ghostly al-Qaeda in terms of creating a three-way-war involving Washington, Tehran and Riyadh.

There’s also the Israeli false flag option. Apart from the fact that the plot does look like an American Israel Public Affairs Committee wet dream delivered to Holder on a silver plate, the Israel lobby in Washington as well as assorted Zionists would love nothing better than to rally alongside a causus belli established in Washington itself, leading perhaps to a US strike of some sort against Iran without direct Israeli involvement.

According to the official mantra, Americans should always be reminded that Iran is an “existential threat” to the Jewish state. Targeting the Saudi ambassador is perfect in terms of involving the House of Saud in logistical support for such a strike.

Even assuming some sort of rogue Qods force faction with a drug smuggling connection might have been involved in this sloppy would-be operation, there’s also the possibility this could have been construed as retaliation for the recent targeted assassination of senior Iranian nuclear scientists inside Iran. But still that does not explain the choice of a Saudi ambassador on US soil. (See Israel wages war on Iranian scientists Asia Times Online, August 27.)

Cui bono?

Once again; why now? The plot has allegedly been known for months. President Barack Obama was briefed about it in June. King Abdullah was briefed about it in mid-September. So why now? It’s back to the usual suspects.

The neo-conservatives. Factions of the industrial-military complex. Right-wing, bat-shit crazy Republicans and their media shills. The Israel lobby. The House of Saud – now painted as a “victim” of the “evil” Iranians, when it has in fact been conducting the fierce counter-revolution that has destroyed any possibility of an Arab Spring in the Persian Gulf – the invasion and repression of Bahrain included.

The plot is very handy to divert attention from Saudi Arabia as the beneficiary of a multi-billionaire US weapons sale. And also very handy to divert attention from Holder himself – caught in yet another monstrous scandal, on whether he told lies regarding Operation Fast and Furious (no, you can’t make this stuff up), a federal gun sting through which no less than 1,400 high-powered US weapons ended up, untracked, in the hands of – you guessed it – Mexican drug cartels. Seems like the Fast and the Furious franchise is the entertainment weapon of choice across all levels of the US government.

Washington wants to “unite the world” against Iran (“world” meaning the North Atlantic Treaty Organization – NATO) and is graphically threatening to take Iran to the United Nations Security Council – all over again.

So let’s anxiously wait for a hushed R2P (“responsibility to protect”) resolution ordering NATO to establish a no-fly zone over every House of Saud prince across the world. A resolution which would be interpreted as a NATO mandate to bomb Iran into regime change. Now that’s a script you can believe in.

Pepe Escobar is the author of Globalistan: How the Globalized World is Dissolving into Liquid War (Nimble Books, 2007) and Red Zone Blues: a snapshot of Baghdad during the surge. His new book, just out, is Obama does Globalistan (Nimble Books, 2009). He may be reached at [email protected]  

The Canadian military is keeping a watch on aboriginal groups through an intelligence unit that is meant to protect the Forces and the Department of National Defence from espionage, terrorists and saboteurs.

The Canadian Forces’ National Counter-Intelligence Unit assembled at least eight reports on the activities of native organizations between January, 2010, and July, 2011, according to records released under access to information law.

When told of the documents, one aboriginal leader said the thought of the military keeping tabs on natives was “chilling.”

The Department of National Defence denies it obtained the intelligence itself, and says the information, which cites confidential sources with apparent inside knowledge of native groups, came from other government agencies.

Referred to as Counter-Intelligence Information Reports, the documents alert the military to events such as native plans for a protest blockade of Highway 401, and the possibility of a backlash among aboriginal groups over Ontario’s introduction of the harmonized sales tax.

“A possibility exists that First Nations extremists opposed to the HST may engage in activities with the potential to impact public safety in Ontario,” said an April, 2010, report that raised the spectre of conflict similar to the Caledonia, Ont., land claim dispute.

The memos devote a lot of space to future protests and lobbying on Parliament Hill by native groups, including the activities of the Assembly of First Nations, the Algonquin Anishinabeg Nation Tribal Council and Red Power United.

The low-profile counter-intelligence unit, formed in the 1990s, is charged with “identifying, investigating and countering threats to the security of the Canadian Forces and the Department of National Defence from foreign intelligence services, or from individuals/groups engaged of espionage, sabotage, subversion, terrorism, extremism or criminal activities.”

The unit reports to the Chief of Defence Intelligence who in turn is responsible to the vice-chief of the defence staff.

It is unclear whether the military did anything further with the informaiton.

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, president of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs, said it was unsettling to learn that the military is keeping tabs on native groups.

“You would think the Canadian armed forces undertakes intelligence gathering prior to launching operations,” Mr. Phillip said. “The fact that they are directing their intelligence activities at native communities and native organizations is deeply disturbing.”

Nearly all of the intelligence in the Defence reports is based on information from confidential sources with apparently close to native groups. “This is a tried and trusted source that has reported reliably in the past” is typical of the way the memos characterize the origin of the information.

Navy Captain Dave Scanlon, a Defence spokesman, said the military draws up reports on a variety of topics to evaluate and anticipate potential threats, but also because it’s part of an integrated national security network in which others might call on soldiers for help.

While Parliament Hill is not a military asset, he said that the fact that soldiers in the ceremonial guard perform on its lawns every spring and summer gives the Forces a reason to monitor activities near the House of Commons.

NDP defence critic Jack Harris said paying close attention to a protest activity that’s near a military asset, such as Cold Lake air weapons range, would make sense for the Forces.

But, he noted, most of the unit’s recent counter-intelligence reports on natives aren’t focused on aboriginal activity near Forces personnel or property.

Mr. Harris said it appears the military has more time and resources than would be expected during financial constraints.

Mr. Harris said this is another reason more external oversight is needed of the Canadian Forces’ intelligence gathering activities, in the same way that an independent review body monitors the Canadian Security Intelligence Service.