Saturday, November 29, 2008
Delusions & LIes
George W. Bush hopes history will see him as a president who liberated millions of Iraqis and Afghans, who worked towards peace and who never sold his soul for political ends.
"I'd like to be a president (known) as somebody who liberated 50 million people and helped achieve peace," Bush said in excerpts of a recent interview released by the White House Friday.
"I would like to be a person remembered as a person who, first and foremost, did not sell his soul in order to accommodate the political process. I came to Washington with a set of values, and I'm leaving with the same set of values."
He also said he wanted to be seen as a president who helped individuals, "that rallied people to serve their neighbor; that led an effort to help relieve HIV/AIDS and malaria on places like the continent of Africa; that helped elderly people get prescription drugs and Medicare as a part of the basic package."
Bush added that every day during his eight-year presidency he had consulted the Bible and drawn comfort from his faith.
"I would advise politicians, however, to be careful about faith in the public arena," the US leader said in the interview with his sister Doro Bush Koch recorded as part of an oral history program known as Storycorps.
As his second term in office draws to an end, Bush joked he would miss some of the trappings that come with the presidency such as trips on Air Force One, never being stuck in a traffic jam, and the president's residence at Camp David.
But he said he was glad to be stepping back into the shadows.
"Frankly, I'm not going to miss the limelight all that much. It's been a fabulous experience to be the president ... But it will be nice to see the Klieg lights shift somewhere else."
The interview, which Bush recorded with First Lady Laura Bush, will be stored in the library of Congress and a museum devoted to the Bush presidency.
Friday, November 28, 2008
Former Mexican President Ernesto Zedillo, who helped supervise the Brookings Institution study, says Washington needs to focus on consumption in addition to targeting traffickers.
By Tracy Wilkinson
November 27, 2008
Reporting from Mexico City -- The United States' war on drugs has failed and will continue to do so as long as it emphasizes law enforcement and neglects the problem of consumption, a Washington think tank says in a report co-chaired by a former president of Mexico.
The former president, Ernesto Zedillo, in an interview, called for a major rethinking of U.S. policy, which he said has been "asymmetrical" in demanding that countries such as Mexico stanch the flow of drugs northward, without successful efforts to stop the flow of guns south. In addition to disrupting drug-smuggling routes, eradicating crops and prosecuting dealers, the U.S. must confront the public health issue that large-scale consumption poses, he said.
Mexico Under Siege: Complete Coverage Photos: Graphic content: Mexico..."If we insist only on a strategy of the criminal pursuit of those who traffic in drugs," Zedillo said, "the problem will never be resolved."
The indictment of Washington's counter-narcotics campaign comes in a report released this week by the Brookings Institution that advocates closer engagement with Latin America and the Caribbean. U.S. influence in the region has slipped dramatically during the eight years of the Bush administration, and the report suggests an incoming Democratic government led by Barack Obama can open opportunities for better ties and communication.
Among its recommendations, the report urges a fresh approach to Cuba, including loosening the long-standing U.S. embargo, overhauling immigration policies, and enhancing "hemispheric integration" on the economic and energy fronts.
The report, which is the work of Brookings' Partnership for the Americas Commission, offers especially pointed criticism of the way the drug war has been waged.
Contrary to government claims, the use of heroin and cocaine in the U.S. has not declined significantly, the report says, and the use of methamphetamine is spreading. Falling street prices suggest that the supply of narcotics has not declined noticeably, and U.S. prevention and treatment programs are woefully underfunded, the study says.
"Current U.S. counter- narcotics policies are failing by most objective standards," the report says. "The only long-run solution to the problem of illegal narcotics is to reduce the demand for drugs in the major consuming countries, including the United States."
Zedillo cited skyrocketing violence in his own country as an example of the damage done by these policies. More than 4,000 people have been killed in Mexico this year in drug-related warfare between government troops and traffickers, and among rival drug gangs. Many of the weapons confiscated in raids and shootouts came from the U.S.
Zedillo, who served as Mexican president from 1994 to 2000, spoke by telephone from Yale University, where he is an economics professor and director of the school's Center for the Study of Globalization. He is co-chairman of the Partnership for the Americas Commission with Thomas R. Pickering, a former U.S. undersecretary of State.
Where the U.S. has had success, as in the reduction of coca production in some areas of Colombia, the gains are not sustainable, Zedillo said, because cultivation merely moves to other zones.
"And that way, the fight goes nowhere," he said.
The report urges the U.S. to take responsibility for stemming the transport of an estimated 2,000 guns a day across the border; to expand drug prevention programs in schools and redirect anti-drug messages to younger people by emphasizing cosmetic damage as well as health risks; and to greatly enhance drug courts, a system that incorporates treatment into prosecution.
John P. Walters, head of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, recently defended U.S. efforts. In Mexico to discuss a pending anti-drug aid package, Walters said a decline in positive drug tests at American workplaces indicated consumption was down, and he said authorities were taking steps to curtail gun shipments.
But a report this month from the U.S. Government Accountability Office, commissioned by Sen. Joe Biden (D-Del.), now the vice president-elect, said the government's most ambitious counter-narcotics program, the $5-billion Plan Colombia, failed to meet several goals. Interdiction halved opium and heroin production in Colombia from 2000 to 2006, but coca and cocaine production continued to grow, it said.
Thursday, November 27, 2008
That Makes Unpeople Of An Entire NationBy Pilger, John
John Pilger's ZSpace Page
November, 27 2008
I went to the Houses of Parliament on 22 October to join a disconsolate group of shivering people who had arrived from a faraway tropical place and were being prevented from entering the Public Gallery to hear their fate. This was not headline news; the BBC reporter seemed almost embarrassed. Crimes of such magnitude are not news when they are ours, and neither is injustice or corruption at the apex of British power.
Lizette Talatte was there, her tiny frail self swallowed by the cavernous stone grey of Westminster Hall. I first saw her in a Colonial Office film from the 1950s which described her homeland, the island of Diego Garcia in the Indian Ocean, as a paradise long settled by people "born and brought up in conditions most tranquil and benign". Lizette was then 14 years old. She remembers the producer saying to her and her friends, "Keep smiling, girls!" When we met in Mauritius, four years ago, she said: "We didn't need to be told to smile. I was a happy child, because my roots were deep in Diego Garcia. My great-grandmother was born there, and I made six children there. Maybe only the English can make a film that showed we were an established community, then deny their own evidence and invent the lie that we were transient workers."
During the 1960s and 1970s British governments, Labour and Tory, tricked and expelled the entire population of the Chagos Archipelago, more than 2,000 British citizens, so that Diego Garcia could be given to the United States as the site for a military base. It was an act of mass kidnapping carried out in high secrecy. As unclassified official files now show, Foreign Office officials conspired to lie, coaching each other to "maintain" and "argue" the "fiction" that the Chagossians existed only as a "floating population". On 28 July 1965, a senior Foreign Office official, T C D Jerrom, wrote to the British representative at the United Nations, instructing him to lie to the General Assembly that the Chagos Archipelago was "uninhabited when the United Kingdom government first acquired it". Nine years later, the Ministry of Defence went further, lying that "there is nothing in our files about inhabitants [of the Chagos] or about an
"To get us out of our homes," Lizette told me, "they spread rumours we would be bombed, then they turned on our dogs. The American soldiers who had arrived to build the base backed several of their big vehicles against a brick shed, and hundreds of dogs were rounded up and imprisoned there, and they gassed them through a tube from the trucks' exhaust. You could hear them crying. Then they burned them on a pyre, many still alive."
Lizette and her family were finally forced on to a rusting freighter and made to lie on a cargo of bird fertiliser during a voyage, through stormy seas, to the slums of Port Louis, Mauritius. Within months, she had lost Jollice, aged eight, and Regis, aged ten months. "They died of sadness," she said. "The eight-year-old had seen the horror of what had happened to the dogs. The doctor said he could not treat sadness."
Since 2000, no fewer than nine high court judgments have described these British government actions as "illegal", "outrageous" and "repugnant". One ruling cited Magna Carta, which says no free man can be sent into exile. In desperation, the Blair government used the royal prerogative - the divine right of kings - to circumvent the courts and parliament and to ban the islanders from even visiting the Chagos. When this, too, was overturned by the high court, the government was rescued by the law lords, of whom a majority of one (three to two) found for the government in a scandalously inept, political manner. In the weasel, almost flippant words of Lord Hoffmann, "the right of abode is a creature of the law. The law gives it and the law takes it away." Forget Magna Carta. Human rights are in the gift of three stooges doing the dirty work of a government, itself lawless.
As the official files show, the Chagos conspiracy and cover-up involved three prime ministers and 13 cabinet ministers, including those who approved "the plan". But elite corruption is unspeakable in Britain. I know of no work of serious scholarship on this crime against humanity. The honourable exception is the work of the historian Mark Curtis, who describes the Chagossians as "unpeople".
The reason for this silence is ideological. Courtier commentators and media historians obstruct our view of the recent past, ensuring, as Harold Pinter pointed out in his Nobel Prize acceptance speech, that while the "systematic brutality, the widespread atrocities, the ruthless suppression of independent thought" in Stalinist Russia were well known in the west, the great state crimes of western governments "have only been superficially recorded, let alone documented".
Typically, the pop historian Tristram Hunt writes in the Observer (23 November): "Nestling in the slipstream of American hegemony served us well in the 20th century. The bonds of culture, religion, language and ideology ensured Britain a postwar economic bailout, a nuclear deterrent and the continuing ability to 'punch above our weight' on the world stage. Thanks to US patronage, our story of decolonisation was for us a relatively painless affair . . ."
Not a word of this drivel hints at the transatlantic elite's Cold War paranoia, which put us all in mortal danger, or the rapacious Anglo-American wars that continue to claim untold lives. As part of the "bonds" that allow us to "punch above our weight", the US gave Britain a derisory $14m discount off the price of Polaris nuclear missiles in exchange for the Chagos Islands, whose "painless decolonisation" was etched on Lizette Talatte's face the other day. Never forget, Lord Hoffmann, that she, too, will die of sadness.
Carve It Up!
It is a matter of great amazement to me that this Al Qaeda can be anywhere in the world, any time it wants to be and that it can strike at will under the orders of the Baron Samedi redux, Bin Laden, who routinely issues his commands from somewhere under the ground or the world beyond.
There’s never been a more amazing organization than Al Qaeda. They managed to get through ICTS, Israeli security at three U.S. airports and hijack four planes. Then they took two planes and crashed into two buildings in New York City. They did this while flying with a precision that few trained pilots could have achieved, without ever having flown such planes before. Then they managed to level three buildings at the speed of freefall where not even one similar building ever fell before though they burned hotter and longer. They didn’t even need a plane to level one of the buildings. That’s probably another Baron Samedi element and explains all the feathers and chicken blood that covered the streets of NYC in the aftermath.
They’re a talented lot, this Al Qaeda, not only did they knock down three buildings with two planes and cover the city with asbestos flavored, chicken blood and feathers but Mohammed Atta tossed his passport out of the plane in some sort of over the shoulder arabesque, as if Isadora Duncan and Amelia Earhart had merged in a Baron Samedi mind-meld with Bin Laden who was controlling the whole thing via remote viewing from a UFO equipped, space cave in Afghanistan and the passport tumbled through the flames and the smoke and glided like a miniature magic carpet right in front of the feet of a NYC policeman.
Then they slipped right past ICTS, Israeli security again in The Madrid Train station and then slipped past ICTS, Israeli security one more time at the London Tube, right under the nose of Netan-yahoo who was in the hotel above. It has to be magic, there’s no other explanation. It’s not Bin Laden that you’re after, it’s Baron Samedi. It’s not Al Qaeda that you’re looking for; it’s the Scarlet Pimpernel and The Seven Dwarfs.
I’m not going to play with rumors concerning who was behind the Mumbai bombing in 2006. I don’t need rumors when I’ve got real life, science fiction and space invaders from the fifth dimension.
What’s most impressive is how the only Al Qaeda cell ever uncovered managed to replace themselves with Mossad agents moments before they were captured. It’s no wonder that Al Qaeda can be everywhere all of the time. It’s no wonder that they can never be apprehended because they’ve got Baron Samedi as The Tonight Show host with the UFO orchestra and special guests; The Comte De St. Germaine, Apollonius of Tyana and The Wizard of Oz.
There won’t be a home in America today that will not have Al Qaeda sitting there. You won’t see them because they have the power of invisibility but they will be there. Bin Laden will be under the table tickling the children’s feet.
Yes, they’re a canny lot. It seems like there isn’t anything they can’t do. Recent news reports have stated that it’s actually Al Qaeda who is starving the people of Gaza. They shut off the power in Gaza. They made all the medicine disappear. They caused the sewage to overflow into the streets and the latest report is that the Cholera germs are actually tiny Al Qaeda soldiers. It’s also Al Qaeda who turned all the Chinese firecrackers into super rockets and launched them with deft precision into empty lots all over Siderot. As a result Al Qaeda now has a three picture deal and a major book tour out of Al Qaeda controlled Hollywood.
Bin Laden’s going to go public again too. After a long period of time sunning himself on The French Riviera, with the occasional commute to his Xanadu in Pakistan, for a little skiing and snowboarding, he’s contemplating a tour of crowded urban centers somewhere near you. The Alien Grays have outfitted him with a magic coat of many colors and he’s going to be launching dirty bombs with mean guitar licks and hair conditioner, liquid explosives on various airliners all while exposing himself to Catholic high school girls in Flushing, Queens. He was last seen on the roof of Lum’s Chinese Restaurant on Northern Blvd. What a guy!
The global financial meltdown which has only just begun? You got it. Bin Laden is doing that with his Al Qaeda bankers and accountants. The genocide in Western Papua? That’s our boy once again. Bin Laden Samedi and the Magical Mystery Al Qaeda are behind everything, everywhere, all the time and they are accomplishing all of it while being dead, on the one hand …and non existent on the other. It’s as if John Paul Sartre and Steven Hawkings got together with Boddhidarma and MC Hammer for some all galactic version of, “You Can’t Touch This.”
The space time continuum? No problem. Weave-warping the fabric of reality? No problem. Being everywhere you want to be and nowhere that you don’t, while vanishing the minute that security shows up? No problem. Rising from the dead like you’re rising from bed? No problem. Driving a 747 through a sixteen foot hole and leaving no plane parts? No problem. No problem. No problem.
Go back to sleep, little sheep. On this Thanksgiving, I want you to think about what you want for this year's abondanza Christmas. I want you to think about how really close you are to sleeping on a flattened cardboard box outside a boarded up storefront. Go right ahead and pack that extra portion of potatoes and gravy into the bottomless pit of your appetite and add another layer of fat to the denial protection system that has you believing things that cannot possibly be true.
It’s going to get much worse. It is going to continue to get worse as you continue to believe what cannot be true. As long as you pull the comforter of delusion over your head the nightmares are going to get worse. They breed in that environment. They like it there.
When it is time to wake up and you do not wake up, then the means applied to wake you up are going to intensify and intensify until you do wake up. Your real enemies are the people who are pointing your attention in the direction of an imaginary enemy. Your primary, real enemy is your ignorance and obstinacy. Your secondary enemy is the one manipulating both for their profit and entertainment.
You need to realize that what is victimizing you is not just doing it to keep you in fear and to bleed you dry. These agencies and entities enjoy the spectacle of what they are putting you through. When you suffer and place the blame on something that never existed or is long dead, they laugh. You amuse the hell out of them. You had better wake up.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Video: Thanksgiving: A Native American View
It is a deep thing that people still celebrate the survival of the early colonists at Plymouth — by giving thanks to the Christian God who supposedly protected and championed the European invasion. The real meaning of all that, then and now, needs to be continually excavated. The myths and lies that surround the past are constantly draped over the horrors and tortures of our present.
Every schoolchild in the United States has been taught that the Pilgrims of the Plymouth Colony invited the local Indians to a major harvest feast after surviving their first bitter year in New England. But the real history of Thanksgiving is a story of the murder of indigenous people and the theft of their land by European colonialists–and of the ruthless ways of capitalism.
In mid-winter 1620 the English ship Mayflower landed on the North American coast, delivering 102 exiles. The original native people of this stretch of shoreline had already been killed off. In 1614 a British expedition had landed there. When they left they took 24 Indians as slaves and left smallpox behind. Three years of plague wiped out between 90 and 96 per cent of the inhabitants of the coast, destroying most villages completely.
The Europeans landed and built their colony called “the Plymouth Plantation” near the deserted ruins of the Indian village of Pawtuxet. They ate from abandoned cornfields grown wild. Only one Pawtuxet named Squanto had survived–he had spent the last years as a slave to the English and Spanish in Europe. Squanto spoke the colonists’ language and taught them how to plant corn and how to catch fish until the first harvest. Squanto also helped the colonists negotiate a peace treaty with the nearby Wampanoag tribe, led by the chief Massasoit.
These were very lucky breaks for the colonists. The first Virginia settlement had been wiped out before they could establish themselves. Thanks to the good will of the Wampanoag, the settlers not only survived their first year but had an alliance with the Wampanoags that would give them almost two decades of peace.
John Winthrop, a founder of the Massahusetts Bay colony considered this wave of illness and death to be a divine miracle. He wrote to a friend in England, “But for the natives in these parts, God hath so pursued them, as for 300 miles space the greatest part of them are swept away by smallpox which still continues among them. So as God hath thereby cleared our title to this place, those who remain in these parts, being in all not 50, have put themselves under our protection.”
The deadly impact of European diseases and the good will of the Wampanoag allowed the settlers to survive their first year.
In celebration of their good fortune, the colony’s governor, William Bradford, declared a three-day feast of thanksgiving after that first harvest of 1621.
How the Puritans stole the land
But the peace that produced the Thanksgiving Feast of 1621 meant that the Puritans would have 15 years to establish a firm foothold on the coast. Until 1629 there were no more than 300 settlers in New England, scattered in small and isolated settlements. But their survival inspired a wave of Puritan invasion that soon established growing Massachusetts towns north of Plymouth: Boston and Salem. For 10 years, boatloads of new settlers came.
And as the number of Europeans increased, they proved not nearly so generous as the Wampanoags.
On arrival, the Puritans and other religious sects discussed “who legally owns all this land. ”They had to decide this, not just because of Anglo-Saxon traditions, but because their particular way of farming was based on individual–not communal or tribal–ownership. This debate over land ownership reveals that bourgeois “rule of law” does not mean “protect the rights of the masses of people.”
Some settlers argued that the land belonged to the Indians. These forces were excommunicated and expelled. Massachusetts Governor Winthrop declared the Indians had not “subdued” the land, and therefore all uncultivated lands should, according to English Common Law, be considered “public domain.” This meant they belonged to the king. In short, the colonists decided they did not need to consult the Indians when they seized new lands, they only had to consult the representative of the crown (meaning the local governor).
The colonists embraced a line from Psalms 2:8. “Ask of me, and I shall give thee, the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession.” Since then, European settler states have similarly declared god their real estate agent: from the Boers seizing South Africa to the Zionists seizing Palestine.
The European immigrants took land and enslaved Indians to help them farm it. By 1637 there were about 2000 British settlers. They pushed out from the coast and decided to remove the inhabitants.
The shining City on the Hill
Where did the Plymouth and Massachusetts colonies of Puritan and “separatist” pilgrims come from and what were they really all about?
Governor Winthrop, a founder of the Massachusetts colony, said, “We shall be as a City upon a Hill, the eyes of all people are upon us.” The Mayflower Puritans had been driven out of England as subversives. The Puritans saw this religious colony as a model of a social and political order that they believed all of Europe should adopt.
The Puritan movement was part of a sweeping revolt within English society against the ruling feudal order of wealthy lords. Only a few decades after the establishment of Plymouth, the Puritan Revolution came to power in England. They killed the king, won a civil war, set up a short-lived republic, and brutally conquered the neighbouring people of Ireland to create a larger national market.
The famous Puritan intolerance was part of a determined attempt to challenge the decadence and wastefulness of the rich aristocratic landlords of England. The Puritans wanted to use the power of state punishment to uproot old and still dominant ways of thinking and behaving.
The new ideas of the Puritans served the needs of merchant capitalist accumulation. The extreme discipline, thrift and modesty the Puritans demanded of each other corresponded to a new and emerging form of ownership and production. Their so-called “Protestant Ethic” was an early form of the capitalist ethic. From the beginning, the Puritan colonies intended to grow through capitalist trade–trading fish and fur with England while they traded pots, knives, axes, alcohol and other English goods with the Indians.
The New England were ruled by a government in which only the male heads of families had a voice. Women, Indians, slaves, servants, youth were neither heard nor represented. In the Puritan schoolbooks, the old law “honour thy father and thy mother” was interpreted to mean honoring “All our Superiors, whether in Family, School, Church, and Commonwealth.” And, the real truth was that the colonies were fundamentally controlled by the most powerful merchants.
The Puritan fathers believed they were the Chosen People of an infinite god and that this justified anything they did. They were Calvinists who believed that the vast majority of humanity was predestined to damnation. This meant that while they were firm in fighting for their own capitalist right to accumulate and prosper, they were quick to oppress the masses of people in Ireland, Scotland and North America, once they seized the power to set up their new bourgeois order. Those who rejected the narrow religious rules of the colonies were often simply expelled “out into the wilderness.”
The Massachusetts colony (north of Plymouth) was founded when Puritan stockholders had gotten control of an English trading company. The king had given this company the right to govern its own internal affairs, and in 1629 the stockholders simply voted to transfer the company to North American shores–making this colony literally a self-governing company of stockholders!
In US schools, students are taught that the Mayflower compact of Plymouth contained the seeds of “modern democracy” and “rule of law.” But by looking at the actual history of the Puritans, we can see that this so-called “modern democracy” was (and still is) a capitalist democracy based on all kinds of oppression and serving the class interests of the ruling capitalists.
In short, the Puritan movement developed as an early revolutionary challenge to the old feudal order in England. They were the soul of primitive capitalist accumulation. And transferred to the shores of North America, they immediately revealed how heartless and oppressive that capitalist soul is.
The birth of the `American way of war'
In the Connecticut Valley, the powerful Pequot tribe had not entered an alliance with the British (as had the Narragansett, the Wampanoag, and the Massachusetts peoples). At first they were far from the centers of colonization. Then, in 1633, the British stole the land where the city of Hartford now sits–land which the Pequot had recently conquered from another tribe. That same year two British slave raiders were killed. The colonists demanded that the Indians who killed the slavers be turned over. The Pequot refused.
The Puritan preachers said, from Romans 13:2, “Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.” The colonial governments gathered an armed force of 240 under the command of John Mason. They were joined by a thousand Narragansett warriors. The historian Francis Jennings writes: “Mason proposed to avoid attacking Pequot warriors which would have overtaxed his unseasoned, unreliable troops. Battle, as such, was not his purpose. Battle is only one of the ways to destroy an enemy’s will to fight. Massacre can accomplish the same end with less risk, and Mason had determined that massacre would be his objective.”
The colonist army surrounded a fortified Pequot village on the Mystic River. At sunrise, as the inhabitants slept, the Puritan soldiers set the village on fire.
William Bradford, Governor of Plymouth, wrote: “Those that escaped the fire were slain with the sword; some hewed to pieces, others run through with their rapiers, so that they were quickly dispatched and very few escaped. It was conceived they thus destroyed about 400 at this time. It was a fearful sight to see them thus frying in the fire…horrible was the stink and scent thereof, but the victory seemed a sweet sacrifice, and they gave the prayers thereof to God, who had wrought so wonderfully for them.”
Mason himself wrote: “It may be demanded…Should not Christians have more mercy and compassion? But…sometimes the Scripture declareth women and children must perish with their parents…. We had sufficient light from the word of God for our proceedings.”
Three hundred and fifty years later the Puritan phrase “a shining city on the hill” became a favorite quote of conservative speechwriters.
Discovering the profits of slavery
This so-called “Pequot war” was a one-sided murder and slaving expedition. Over 180 captives were taken. After consulting the bible again, in Leviticus 24:44, the colonial authorities found justification to kill most of the Pequot men and enslave the captured women and their children. Only 500 Pequot remained alive and free. In 1975 the official number of Pequot living in Connecticut was 21.
Some of the war captives were given to the Narragansett and Massachusetts allies of the British. Even before the arrival of Europeans, Native peoples of North America had widely practiced taking war captives from other tribes as hostages and slaves.
The remaining captives were sold to British plantation colonies in the West Indies to be worked to death in a new form of slavery that served the emerging capitalist world market. And with that, the merchants of Boston made a historic discovery: the profits they made from the sale of human beings virtually paid for the cost of seizing them.
One account says that enslaving Indians quickly became a “mania with speculators.” These early merchant capitalists of Massachusetts started to make genocide pay for itself. The slave trade, first in captured Indians and soon in kidnapped Africans, quickly became a backbone of New England merchant capitalism.
Thanksgiving in the Manhattan Colony
In 1641 the Dutch governor Kieft of Manhattan offered the first “scalp bounty”–his government paid money for the scalp of each Indian brought to them. A couple years later, Kieft ordered the massacre of the Wappingers, a friendly tribe. Eighty were killed and their severed heads were kicked like soccer balls down the streets of Manhattan. One captive was castrated, skinned alive and forced to eat his own flesh while the Dutch governor watched and laughed. Then Kieft hired the notorious Underhill who had commanded in the Pequot war to carry out a similar massacre near Stamford, Connecticut. The village was set fire, and 500 Indian residents were put to the sword.
A day of thanksgiving was proclaimed in the churches of Manhattan. As we will see, the European colonists declared Thanksgiving Days to celebrate mass murder more often than they did for harvest and friendship.
The Conquest of New England
By the 1670s there were about 30,000 to 40,000 white inhabitants in the United New England Colonies–6000 to 8000 able to bear arms. With the Pequot destroyed, the Massachusetts and Plymouth colonists turned on the Wampanoag, the tribe that had saved them in 1620 and probably joined them for the original Thanksgiving Day.
In 1675 a Christian Wampanoag was killed while spying for the Puritans. The Plymouth authorities arrested and executed three Wampanoag without consulting the tribal chief, King Philip.
As Mao Tsetung says: “Where there is oppression there is resistance.” The Wampanoag went to war.
The Indians applied some military lessons they had learned: they waged a guerrilla war which overran isolated European settlements and were often able to inflict casualties on the Puritan soldiers. The colonists again attacked and massacred the main Indian populations.
When this war ended, 600 European men, one-eleventh of the adult men of the New England Colonies, had been killed in battle. Hundreds of homes and 13 settlements had been wiped out. But the colonists won.
In their victory, the settlers launched an all-out genocide against the remaining Native people. The Massachusetts government offered 20 shillings bounty for every Indian scalp, and 40 shillings for every prisoner who could be sold into slavery. Soldiers were allowed to enslave any Indian woman or child under 14 they could capture. The “Praying Indians” who had converted to Christianity and fought on the side of the European troops were accused of shooting into the treetops during battles with “hostiles.” They were enslaved or killed. Other “peaceful” Indians of Dartmouth and Dover were invited to negotiate or seek refuge at trading posts–and were sold onto slave ships.
It is not known how many Indians were sold into slavery, but in this campaign, 500 enslaved Indians were shipped from Plymouth alone. Of the 12,000 Indians in the surrounding tribes, probably about half died from battle, massacre and starvation.
After King Philip’s War, there were almost no Indians left free in the northern British colonies. A colonist wrote from Manhattan’s New York colony: “There is now but few Indians upon the island and those few no ways hurtful. It is to be admired how strangely they have decreased by the hand of God, since the English first settled in these parts.”
In Massachusetts, the colonists declared a “day of public thanksgiving” in 1676, saying, “there now scarce remains a name or family of them [the Indians] but are either slain, captivated or fled.”
Fifty-five years after the original Thanksgiving Day, the Puritans had destroyed the generous Wampanoag and all other neighboring tribes. The Wampanoag chief King Philip was beheaded. His head was stuck on a pole in Plymouth, where the skull still hung on display 24 years later.
The descendants of these Native peoples are found wherever the Puritan merchant capitalists found markets for slaves: the West Indies, the Azures, Algiers, Spain and England. The grandson of Massasoit, the Pilgrim’s original protector, was sold into slavery in Bermuda.
Runaways and rebels
But even the destruction of Indian tribal life and the enslavement of survivors brought no peace. Indians continued to resist in every available way. Their oppressors lived in terror of a revolt. And they searched for ways to end the resistance. The historian MacLeod writes: “The first `reservations’ were designed for the `wild’ Irish of Ulster in 1609. And the first Indian reservation agent in America, Gookin of Massachusetts, like many other American immigrants had seen service in Ireland under Cromwell.”
The enslaved Indians refused to work and ran away. The Massachusetts government tried to control runaways by marking enslaved Indians: brands were burnt into their skin, and symbols were tattooed into their foreheads and cheeks.
A Massachusetts law of 1695 gave colonists permission to kill Indians at will, declaring it was “lawful for any person, whether English or Indian, that shall find any Indians traveling or skulking in any of the towns or roads (within specified limits), to command them under their guard and examination, or to kill them as they may or can.”
The northern colonists enacted more and more laws for controlling the people. A law in Albany forbade any African or Indian slave from driving a cart within the city. Curfews were set up; Africans and Indians were forbidden to have evening get-togethers. On Block Island, Indians were given 10 lashes for being out after nine o’clock. In 1692 Massachusetts made it a serious crime for any white person to marry an African, an Indian or a mulatto. In 1706 they tried to stop the importation of Indian slaves from other colonies, fearing a slave revolt.
Looking at this history raises a question: Why should anyone celebrate the survival of the earliest Puritans with a Thanksgiving Day? Certainly the Native peoples of those times had no reason to celebrate.
The ruling powers of the United States organised people to celebrate Thanksgiving Day because it is in their interest. That’s why they created it. The first national celebration of Thanksgiving was called for by George Washington. And the celebration was made a regular legal holiday later by Abraham Lincoln during the civil war (right as he sent troops to suppress the Sioux of Minnesota).
Washington and Lincoln were two presidents deeply involved in trying to forge a unified bourgeois nation-state out of the European settlers in the United States. And the Thanksgiving story was a useful myth in their efforts at U.S. nation-building. It celebrates the “bounty of the American way of life,” while covering up the brutal nature of this society.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
The Federal Con
One of the most ungodly and fraudulent institutions ever perpetrated on the American people and the world, is the Federal Reserve System which through deceit became the central bank of the United States in 1913. The idea came about on a meeting in Jekyl Island off the coast of Georgia in 1910. The bankers in this country, especially J.P. Morgan, created a currency panic in 1907 in order to get the American people to accept the idea of a central bank.
A central bank already existed in England from as far back as 1694. The Rothschilds completely dominate the banking system. It is estimated their wealth goes into the trillions.
Baron Nathan Mayer Rothschild boasted: "I care not what puppet is placed upon the throne of England to rule the Empire on which the sun never sets. The man that controls Britain's money supply controls the British Empire, and I control the British money supply."
The idea of a central bank is to so enslave the people of the country to a debt money system that you continue to collect taxes continuously which just covers the interest. The duped people of the United States are paying about $350 billion dollars per year to the IRS which is the collection agency for the Federal Reserve. By the way, the Federal Reserve is a privately owned bank with 10 private members. The Chase Manhattan Bank is a member which is owned by the Rockefellers who are Rothschild Agents. I will list the ten member banks at the end of this article..
At this point the citizens of the United States falsely owe these lemmings over 10 trillion dollars. Have you ever asked the following question?
WHO HAS THAT MUCH MONEY TO LOAN TO THE UNITED STATES?
History of Lies
During the time of the Babylonian captivity of Judah, a man named Jacob Egibi became the founding father of modern banking. While Judah was in captivity, Jacob began a business of loaning out money for a rate of interest. During the Reign of King Kandalanu of Babylon (circa 648-625 B.C.) a new phenomenon appeared on the scene which Jacob Egibi played a major part, and that was the invention of private banking. There were 2 prominent families at this time, they were the Egibi family and the Iranu families. These 2 families are not a figment of imagination as their names have appeared in many cuneiform tablets discovered by Archaeologists. It is believed that the Egibi family was taken with the first captivity into Assyria and then later migrated to Babylon. At the time of the 70 year captivity, Jacob Egibi already had an ongoing private banking business in which he collected large sums of interest. Now we have secular insight as to why many of the Jews did not want to return with Nehemiah to rebuild the temple at Jerusalem.
By the time of the end of the captivity, many of the others who were in captivity with the Egibi families learned this evil business practice and began to set up shop. A good example of this are the moneychangers which the Lord Jesus Christ threw out of the temple. As a friend of mine said to me many times, "Christ drove the moneychangers from the temple and was crucified 4 days later."
During the time of the Persian period, loan sharking became a business where interest rates of anywhere from 30-50% were charged. As time went on, the writings of the Roman historian Tacitus, tells us that during the reigns of Caesar Augustus (27 BC - 14 AD) and Tiberius (14-32 AD) records of the Roman empire reveal deposits, withdrawals, brokers fees and loans. When the western Roman Empire fell, banking continued to thrive in Egypt, Byzantium, and the Arab nations of the Red Sea.
When the Christian era began to take hold and the church became a powerful entity, she returned to the Old Testament Edict of not charging usury and this idea continued up until the time of the Renaissance when banks began appearing across Europe. To show you how some kings despised usury, I offer 2 quotations:
...if any man is found taking usury, his lands will be confiscated, and he will be banished from England...
Alfred the Great, King of England; 849-901 A.D.
...If a man is found taking usury, his lands will be confiscated. It is like taking a man's life, and it must not be tolerated...
James 1, King of England; 1566-1625 A.D.
With the rise of international trade which commenced at the end of the medieval period, many of the banks were allowed to coin money for their transactions. At that time, there was no such thing as national money and when the banks minted coins, they were all of different value which created a dilemma for international trade. The first "Christian" gold coins were struck by Emperor Frederick II in 1225 A.D. Then came the "ducats'' of Portugal, the "florins" of Florence, the "agnels" of France, and the "sequins" which became the official coins of Genoa and Venice.
Europe then progressed from the Feudal system and with this came trade between different nations which resulted in foreign moneys accumulating in the various cities in Europe.
1694: The Year which Doomed the World's Economies
The government of King William III was in desperate need of money. When learning of this situation, a man named William Patterson put together a cartel of wealthy men, of which he was the leader. Patterson and cronies agreed to loan the King 1,200,000 pound sterling which would have been approximately 6 million dollars at 8% interest per annum on the condition that the king would grant 2 things:
2) This bank shall have the "sole and exclusive right" to issue notes to the fullest extent of its capital.
The people were having a problem with their gold and silver coins of which the bankers quickly came to the rescue. The solution is aptly described by Professor Carroll Quigley in his book, Tragedy and Hope: ...for generations men had sought to avoid the one drawback of gold, its heaviness, by using pieces of paper to represent specific pieces of gold. Today we call such pieces of paper "gold certificates." Such a certificate entitled its bearer to exchange it for pieces of gold on demand, but in view of convenience of paper, only a small fraction of certificate holders ever did make such demands. It early became clear that gold need be held on hand only to the amount needed to cover the fraction of certificates likely to be presented for payment; accordingly the rest of the gold could be used for business purposes, or, what amounts to the same thing. A volume of certificates could be issued greater than the volume of gold reserved for payment....Such an excess volume of paper claims against reserves we now call bank notes. In effect, this creation of paper claims greater than the reserves available means that bankers were creating money out of nothing...
The King literally granted the Bank of England the legal right to print all the money that would be used in commerce by the people and the government. In other words the Bank of England became the sole money source of any currency that was used in English commerce by either the people or the government. If they needed more money, they simply printed it. It is said that by 1698 British government owed 16 X 10 to the 6 power pounds sterling to the Bank of England. Keep in mind this was only 4 years.
1773: The Second Date of Infamy
In 1773, a wealthy goldsmith and coin dealer named Mayer Amschel Bauer (1743-1812) summoned 12 wealthy and influential men to his place of business in Frankfurt, Germany. His purpose for the meeting was to impress upon these men that if they pooled their resources, it was possible to gain control of the wealth, natural resources, and manpower of the entire world. He then outlined a 25 point plan on how to accomplish it.
The plan was put into operation and evidentiary information exists that Bauer aligned himself with Adam Weishaupt who was the founder of the Illuminati whose aim was and still is world domination. Bauer later changed his name to Rothschild which means "red shield." He took it from the red sign which hung outside his place of business. The eagle was clutching 5 golden arrows in its claws. It was supposed to symbolize his five sons. Presently the red shield represents the official coat of arms of the city of Frankfurt, Germany.
Later on each of the five sons were dispatched to a major city in Europe to establish a branch of the Rothschild banking firm.
Son #1 - Amschel - Remained in Frankfurt and propelled Germany to financial success under Bismarck. Son #2 - Salomon - Went to Vienna, Austria. he became a leader in the Austria-Hungary Empire. Son #3 - Nathan Mayer - Went to England where he took control of the Bank of England. Son #4 - Carl - Went to Naples where he became the most powerful man in Italy through his banking skills. Son #5 - James Jacob - Went to Paris where he established the central bank. He was credited with dominating the financial destiny of the nation of France.
By 1850, the House of Rothschild represented more wealth than all the families of Europe. Shortly after he formed the Bank of England, William Patterson lost control of it to Nathan Rothschild and here is how he did it: Nathan Rothschild was an observer on the day the Duke of Wellington defeated Napoleon at Waterloo, Belgium. He knew that with this information he could make a fortune. He later paid a sailor a big fee to take him across the English Channel in bad weather. The news of Napoleon's defeat would take a while to hit England. When Nathan arrived in London, he began selling securities and bonds in a panic. The other investors were deceived into believing that Napoleon won the war and was eyeing England so they began to sell their securities too. What they were unaware of is that Rothschild's agents were buying all the securities that were being sold in panic. In one day, the Rothschild fortune grew by one million pounds. They literally bought control of England for a few cents on the dollar. The same way the Rockefeller's went into Japan after World War 2 and bought everything 10 cents on the dollar. SONY=Standard Oil New York, a Rockefeller Company.
Frederick Morton wrote in his book, The Rothschilds: "...the wealth of the Rothschilds consists of the bankruptcy of nations."
There were other wealthy families in Europe and America which were allowed to join "the international banking club" such as John D. Rockefeller and John Pierpont Morgan.
Early American Wisdom
In 1826, the second bank's charter was soon to expire and presidential candidate Andrew Jackson campaigned strongly against a central bank which was owned and operated by the international banking element. Here is Jackson's opinion of those bankers: "You are a den of vipers. I intend to wipe you out, and by the Eternal God I will rout you out...If people only understood the rank injustice of the money and banking system, there would be a revolution by morning."
In 1836, the charter did expire but that was not the end of the international banking influence in this country. The Civil War was planned in England as far back as 1809. Slavery was not the real cause of the Civil War. The Rothschilds (who were heavy into the slave trade) used the slavery issue as "a divide and conquer strategy" which almost split the United States in two. The Bank of England financed the North while the Paris branch of the Rothschild bank funded the South. In 1863, the National Banking Act was passed despite protest by President Lincoln. This act allowed a private corporation the authority to issue our money.
In November of 1910, some of these vultures came together at the Jekyl Island Hunt Club on Jekyl Island, Georgia. What were they hunting? The biggest prize of all, the absolute and complete control of all the money in America which means control of all America and with it the power to make slaves of all the people.
Those who attended were: Senator Nelson Aldrich (Nelson Rockefeller's maternal grandfather); A. Piatt Andrew, Economist and Assistant Secretary of the Treasury; Frank Vanderlip, President of the National City Bank of New York; Henry P. Norton, President of Morgan's First National Bank of New York; Paul Moritz Warburg, a German who was partner in the New York banking house of Kuhn, Loeb Co.; Benjamin Strong, an aid to J. P. Morgan.
Paul Warburg was credited as the architect of the bill which was passed by Congress and signed by traitorous Woodrow Wilson. It was entitled the Federal Reserve Act of 1913. America once again had a central bank but this time they had placed America under an absolute dictatorship. President James Garfield had insight into this situation: "It must be realized that whoever controls the volume of money in any country is absolutely master of all industry commerce."
The Federal Reserve was incorporated in 1914 and has been creating a completely unnecessary national debt ever since. In simple terms, the Fed creates money as debt. They create money out of thin air by nothing more than a book entry. Whenever the members of the Fed make any loans, that debt money is our money supply.
The United States went bankrupt in 1938 because of this system. It took the Fed only 25 years to bankrupt the USA. Can you imagine how little time it would take these vultures to bankrupt a developing nation? The American people are paying about $300 billion dollars a year in interest to this phony organization. When you look in the Washington, D.C. phone book, you will not find the Federal Reserve in the Government section as they are a private concern.
The national debt is increased about $1.71 billion dollars every day (as of October 12, 2004) . Have you taken a look at your money? It says "Federal Reserve Note" which means it is an instrument of debt. There is no real money in circulation.
The Assassination of President Kennedy
One of the greatest coverups in history was the Killing of the President. If you believe the Mafia did it, then I have ocean front land in Kansas for you to buy. President Kennedy was murdered over money, $4 billion dollars worth. You see, he had printed $4 billion worth of non-interest bearing money which meant he began to chop at the profits of the vultures. Interest free money means the national debt is eliminated and the power of the international banking element is broken. So to prevent Kennedy from abolishing the illegal Fed, he was assassinated. Coincidence? As soon as the traitor Johnson was in office, he recalled all the debt free notes and continued our country in the same path of ruin. There, the mystery of the killing is over. Just follow the trail of the money.
Then, lo and behold, in the 1920's we see a little known corporal with 12 men meeting in a beer hall in Munich while in America the Roaring 20's were in progress until October, 1929. Then the Federal Reserve withheld money from circulation so bills could not be paid, while simultaneously they were calling in all their loans which caused the stock market to crash. By 1932 the price of stocks had plummeted 80%. When the bankers plunged this nation into a depression on that fateful day in October, at the New York Stock Exchange was a visitor, his name was Winston Churchill who stated after the crash of '29, "Now I know who wields the real power."
Then we come into the 1930's and the rise of Hitler. Hitler was also funded by Wall Street through the Industrialist I.G. Farben. Let's test the theory of follow the money. Here is a little known corporal with no money meeting in a beer hall in Munich with only about 12 men. In a seriously depressed and defeated country, there begins to rise another military dictatorship. By 1934 the Nuremberg Rallies were in place and Germany was rebuilt. In that countries' economy who had that much money to rebuild Germany into a powerful country which marched across Europe and almost defeated Russia in the first 24 hours of Case White (The invasion of Russia)? The answer is the bankers of the USA and England. In fact, a banker named Bernard Baruch was President Roosevelt's personal advisor during World War 2. Baruch made $200 million dollars as a result of World War 2. During WW2 the Rockefellers were selling oil to the Germans from their Standard Oil concern in Argentina.
The Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) was formed in 1919 in Paris, France by Colonel Edward Mandell House who was known as Woodrow Wilson's alter ego. The CFR was and still is dedicated to the one world rule under a new world order. In fact, every war has been planned by the CFR. Every American President since 1919 has had their cabinet filled with CFR members. Also our traitorous Presidents fill their cabinets with not only CFR members but those of the Trilateral Commission, the Bilderbergers, the Yale Fraternity of the Skull and Bones (George Bush was a member of this).
These members insure that the will of the bankers are done, even if the President is not a member of any group. After WW2, was fought another war was created known as the Korean War (which was started by a phone call from John Foster Dulles), then the Vietnam War. During the Vietnamese War, the Rockefellers had a metals processing plant going full blast in North Vietnam. The Rockefellers have the blood of thousands of Americans on their hands because of their supplying the Russians with weapons and metals. The North Vietnamese received their weapons from Russia. The only reason these rats are never indicted for treason, is because since WW2 there has never been a declared war which means if we have no official enemy, there can be no aiding the enemy AKA treason.
Presently we have skirmishes such as the Gulf War of 1990 which was an experiment by the New World Order crowd to see how fast they can assemble an army in case a country does not choose to obey the dictates of the banker bosses. Of course funding for the gulf war came from borrowing money from the Fed. Wherever you hear of a limited war, or some type of political destabilization, think of the money trail. Wars are started in foreign countries, then our President goes there and gives millions of dollars of borrowed money which normally goes into the pockets of the dictators. Nowhere in our Constitution is it written that our government is to borrow money and give it away.
The American economy has been sucked dry by the Federal Reserve System. Americans think they own property but the truth is the entire United States has been mortgaged to the bankers. The Rothschilds and Rockefellers become richer while the peoples of the world become poorer. The International Monetary Fund and the World Bank are also designed to loan money to developing nations with the understanding that they will never be able to repay so with every loan made to a country, it becomes their death knell. The entire world has been plunged into a debt economy which means 6 billion people are in debt to about 250 men. But keep in mind that all their wealth is phony because it is created money without any gold backing.
I really laugh when Wall Street bows down to Alan Greenspan who is nothing more than a boot licker of the International Banking element who takes his orders by phone too. So many people rejoice when the Federal Reserve has a policy meeting and no interest rate increase happens. The truth is that we should never have a Federal Reserve to begin with. They print money, loan it into circulation, and the American people are strapped with more debt.
I remember leaving materials on the Federal Reserve at a meeting of Concerned Women for America. The next day I went back and not one copy was taken. The reason given me was because it was not approved material. Groups like Concerned Women for America and the Christian Coalition and Rush Limbaugh are something known as controlled opposition. They are allowed to exist as long as they do not bring up the real issues. If they stick to the created liberal Democrat Vs. conservative Republican agenda, they can exist and the bankers will even make them famous. But you will never hear a Beverly LaHaye, Tim LaHaye, Jim Dobson, Billy Graham, Gary Bauer, or any other famous Christians ever tackle the real issues like the illegal Fed which causes all the poverty in every country. If these people would think for a minute that if $350 billion dollars a year was not being sucked out of the economy and was used for the people in this country, we would surely have enough to help other nations and our own problems. Crime would almost be non-existent with a monetized money system. The Great Commission would also be funded without worrying if there will be enough left over to feed the children.
THE TEN MEMBER BANKS OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE
Rothschild Bank of London
Warburg Bank of Hamburg
Rothschild Bank of Berlin
Lehman Brothers of New York
Lazard Brothers of Paris
Kuhn Loeb Bank of New York
Israel Moses Seif Banks of Italy
Goldman, Sachs of New York
Warburg Bank of Amsterdam
Chase Manhattan Bank of New York
Now ask a question - Where is the Federal Government of the United States listed and how much does it get? I will answer it for you, it is not listed because the Federal Reserve is private and it receives nothing.
Sunday, November 23, 2008
NATO Still Killing People in Kosovo
By Lajla Mlinarić
Back in 1999 NATO carried out a 78-day shelling of Serbia and Kosovo. They used depleted uranium which continues to kill people.
November 22, 2008
Back in 1999 NATO carried out a 78-day shelling of Serbia and Kosovo. They allegedly used depleted uranium which continues to kill people.Nine years after NATO’s bombing of Serbia, the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation is still taking lives in Kosovo, Serbia’s Pressonline reported. The NATO allegedly used shells with depleted uranium which are still today causing an increase in the number of cancer patients.Prior to 1999, the number of Serbs who suffered from malignant tumours was three times lesser, according to the statistics of Serb hospitals. In Kosovo’s Kosovska Mitrovica in 2005 there were 38 percent more cancer patients than in 2004.In those two years, a total of 3,500 cancer cases in Kosovo Albanians were diagnosed.Globally, six people out of a thousand suffer from malignant tumours on average. In the Kosovska Mitrovica hospital, there are 200 cancer patients to 1,000 people.
NATO used weapons banned by international conventions
After 2000, groups of experts in atomic energy tested water, food, air, plants and animals to establish the damage caused by radiation from NATO shells. Beta and Gamma radiation was higher than the permissible level and radiation was discovered in the soil, water, plants and animals. After it gets into the soil, it takes some 250 years for depleted uranium to degrade.
The conclusions of the studies were that the environment on 100 locations in Kosovo was not safe for animals or people, but no bans or moving of the population was carried out.
European peace troops stationed in Kosovo knew there was great danger of radiation in these areas. Italian military experts concluded in 2005 that 34 soldiers had died from leukaemia and various malignant tumours. Since then 150 soldiers from Kosovo were sent home.
In mid-2000 NATO published a map with 112 marked locations that had been shelled with depleted uranium. Over the 78 days of NATO bombing, a total of 31,000 shells with depleted uranium, weapons banned by international treaties, were dropped in Kosovo.
The pact being negotiated between the US and Baghdad governments includes a direct rebuff to president-elect Barack Obama's promised policy of withdrawing American combat troops in 16-18 months. The pact instead would leave those troops in place until the end of 2011, a doubling of the timeline to which Obama pledged himself. But that's not all.
The most important things, some say, are the things left unsaid. If so, the unmentionable thing would be the police state America is leaving behind in Baghdad.
Finally, human rights observers agree that there are 40-50,000 Iraqis currently held in detention centers under either US or Iraqi control. Under terms of the pact, "we're getting out of the detainee business", says the US military spokesman in Iraq. The US-run camps, known as Bucca and Cropper, hold at least 17,000 detainees under a US-declared "security detention" doctrine that does not exist in either American or Iraqi law. According to Human Rights Watch, they are held "for indefinite periods, without judicial review, and under military processes that do not meet international standards." Most of them - at least 12,000 - were mistakenly seized in American sweeps or played marginal roles the resistance. Those who are released are often killed by Shi'a death squads.
If the US and Iraqi governments were to seek a renewal of the United Nations reauthorization when it expires on December 31, chances are that accepted human rights standards would be demanded for the Iraqis detainees, such as access to legal council, family members and international observers.
But under the proposed Iraq-US pact, the 17,000 will be shifted from US to Iraqi detention facilities, a transition to even greater darkness. Knowing this, the Sunni parliamentary bloc is demanding amnesty for most of them.
The concerns are deadly serious. I interviewed an American contractor, a former Marine, just returned from Baghdad in 2005, one paid to protect the Sunni delegation in the Green Zone. He bitterly spoke of Sunni bodies, bullets lodged in their heads from short range, lye disfiguring their faces, being dumped in the streets, The 2007 Baker-Hamilton Study group issued a one-sentence confirmation that the Iraqi police "routinely engage in sectarian violence, including the unnecessary detention, torture and targeted execution of Sunni Arab civilians."
Before the Baker-Hamilton finding, there were other revelations. The Times revealed secret prisons and torture sites in Baghdad which reported directly to the Interior Ministry, itself under sectarian Shi'a control. The Times also described "black sites" at Camp Nama, where an American task force beat, kicked, blindfolded and forced Iraqi inmates to crouch in 6-by-8 cubicles in a prison called Hotel California, where the official motto was "No Blood, No Foul."
A Congressionally-created law enforcement commission concluded in September 2007 that the Ministry of Interior is "a ministry in name only...widely regarded as dysfunctional and sectarian."
Even the Bush administration in 2007 confessed "evidence of sectarian bias in the appointment of senior military and police commanders [and] target lists that bypassed operational commanders and directed lower-level intelligence officers to make arrests, primarily of Sunnis."
Dry language, dry bones
Antiseptic language is sometimes necessary in journalism and law to make objective evaluations. But it also can suppress moral and emotional responses to suffering and serve as a sedative in managing public opinion. Riveting stories of torture dungeons don't rate much in the media in comparison to domestic violence between white Americans. For instance, clear evidence that Sunni children were being murdered by the Sunni captors, persuasive to a top US military investigator, made it into the Salt Lake Tribune, but not much further. The US Judge Advocate happened to be from Utah, making it a local story.
Counterinsurgency often is framed as winning hearts and minds, not as crushing the alleged insurgents to protect the civilian population. In South Vietnam, that led to "strategic hamlets" and the Phoenix program. In Central America, it was death squads who killed priests, nuns and thousands of civilians. In both cases, American and world opinion was shocked.
In the case of Iraq, there is silence in the West.
For example, there has not been a single Congressional inquiry into the oblique revelations in Bob Woodward's latest book about secret operations launched in May 2006 to "locate, target, and kill individuals in extremist groups". The top intelligence adviser on these operations, Derek Harvey, told Woodward that the killings gave him orgasms. These were extra-judicial killings, with the Pentagon acting as judge, jury and executioner. The definition of "extremist" was stretched to include anyone named by an informant as a supporter of the Sunni insurgency, supported by an overwhelming majority of Sunnis.
During Vietnam, the Phoenix program, exposed as killing over 20,000 Vietcong suspects, was closed down after an outburst of ethical fury. In 2004, the Phoenix program's revival was recommended by Dr. David Kilkullen, described in the Washington Post as "chief adviser on counterinsurgency operations" to Gen. David Petraeus. Kilkullen advocated a "global Phoenix program" to combat global terror in a 2004 article in Small Wars Journal. He later reissued the article without the Phoenix label, having already described the Phoenix project as "unfairly maligned" and "highly effective." He also advocates applying "armed social science" against the "physical and mental vulnerabilities" of Iraqi detainees. He walks the streets of Washington today, widely accepted in the world of national security advisers. No one in that select establishment has ever criticised his writings.
Americans already pay for this sectarian repression - which even includes the diminishment of Christian seats in parliament - with $22 billion in tax dollars from 2003 through 2007 for American advisers to the Interior Ministry, police and prison guards. In 2007, there were 90 American advisers assigned to the interior ministry, which much of training of police and prison personnel is outsourced to contractors like DynCorps, according to Congressional oversight hearings.
One of the trainers has been Gen. James Steele, a veteran of the Central American counterinsurgency wars, who was with the US Civil Police Assistance Training Team when the sectarian Iraqi militias began operating under official cover. He was quoted in 2006 as "not regretting their creation."
How has this happened? Presumably the public lacks any sympathy for individuals accused of Islamic terrorism. But there has been ample uproar over torture at Abu Graeb and US foreign policy generally. The public simply doesn't know much at all about the detention camps in Iraq. Most of the concerned NGOs take up less controversial causes than Iraqi inmates for their fundraising. Human rights insiders accept the paradigm that a democratic, pluralistic Iraq is a work in progress, still lacking an independent judiciary and ACLU watchdogs of their own. The international Red Cross has agrees to keep its findings secret. The peace movement is locked into an exclusive "out now" framework that subordinates police and prison issues to the margins. The Pentagon therefore succeeds in fabricating a new mirage in the desert to replace the discredited one. As our combat troops are replaced by low-visibility advisers, amnesia could take over completely, while shame and hatred beget a new generation of insurgents.
The US administration could do something about this Frankenstein. It could use its remaining leverage to insist on the release of the detainees or the application of enforceable human rights standards and access for the media and human rights workers.
But Congress and the media seem to think that a sectarian police state is the ugly price that must be paid for sharply reducing American casualties and reducing our footprint in Iraq. The hot debate among judge advocates, pro bono lawyers and Congressional investigators, is about a few hundred Guantanamo detainees, not the dark underside of counterinsurgency.
The next stop is Afghanistan, where another 50,000 detainees fester under similar conditions to Iraq, and the British envoy recently recommended an "acceptable dictator." Instead of addressing the human rights crisis in that country, the envoy suggest that "we should think of preparing our public opinion" for dictatorship as the necessary outcome.
Saturday, November 22, 2008
White Collar Terror
Banking on Terror
Citigroup Lobbies to Weaken Anti-Terror Legislation
Time To Expose the "White Collar Terrorists"
The view is suddenly different from Citigroup headquarters in New York, and from the boardrooms of the large banks and financial institutions that compete with it, too.
We are not speaking of the empty vista of a city skyline where two towers once stood and thousands of innocent lives were lost. The sweat under the white collars of bank executives in New York is not due to fear of suicide bombers. The specter haunting Citigroup and the other large banks is that the fast march of current events could lead to a new public understanding and outrage: that terrorism and the illicit drug trade that funds it could not exist without banks to launder their funds.
The bankers and financiers knew, or should have known, all along that their money-laundering business has caused many atrocities, and would eventually lead to massacres on the scale of September 11th.
Three words must now enter the public lexicon: "White Collar Terrorists."
The kingpins of global organized crime do not wear sombreros nor turbans. They wear suits and ties. They attend political fundraisers. They hire big lobbying firms. They pressure and push lawmakers for loopholes that have, so far, allowed a system of "private banking," "correspondent banks," and "offshore shell banks" to launder the money of corrupt regimes and criminal empires across the world.
Citigroup is the largest financial institution in the world. It has been caught time and time again in narco-money laundering trails in our América and across the globe.
Citigroup, according to the Washington Post, is now lobbying to weaken anti-terrorism money-laundering legislation in Washington.
Narco News has extensively documented Citigroup's history of impunity and corruption when it comes to laundering drug money for corrupt regimes in Mexico and Peru, and Argentina, among other nations. We have also reported on the hypocrisy of Citigroup executive chairman Robert Rubin, who prosecuted Banamex in the Operation Casablanca case when he was U.S. Treasury Secretary, and then orchestrated the former National Bank of Mexico's purchase by Citigroup. Rubin, as alleged in a pending federal lawsuit by a former U.S. Customs Agent against his former department, presided over a Treasury regime that punished, harassed and silenced honest whistleblowers against corruption in his agencies.
In the aftermath of the September 11th attacks, President George W. Bush has proclaimed that Washington will now clamp down on the money laundering that funds terrorist organizations. But the White House has, so far, only frozen assets of foreign businesses, all of them from the Arab regions. The executive branch continues to allow impunity and corruption by U.S. financial powers, even as it grandstands against the terror-money trail.
Congress, however, has stood up to take on the real power-behind-the-terror-throne: United States banking and financial interests. The Washington Post reported last week that "Some of the nation's largest banks -- including Citigroup and J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. -- are lobbying to change key provisions of proposed money-laundering legislation."
The Washington Post reports: Citigroup and other big banks want to change the wording of a provision that would require banks to actively monitor transactions they conduct for their wealthiest clients -- "private banking" customers -- and for clients of other banks -- "correspondent banking" services, sources said.
The banks want to include language that would give the secretary of the Treasury the authority to exempt U.S. banks from having to exercise enhanced oversight when doing business with banks from countries that have weak money-laundering laws, an industry lawyer familiar with the lobbying effort said.
In addition, Citigroup executive Rick Small has proposed language that would soften a provision barring U.S. banks from doing business with offshore shell banks that have no physical office and no affiliation with an established bank. Until recently, Small was one of the Federal Reserve Board's top money-laundering experts. He didn't return calls.
Each of these three areas of Citigroup's business - Private Banking, Correspondent Banking, and relations with Offshore Shell Banks - are keys to a system in which U.S. banks have been allowed to virtually monopolize the drug money trade. While U.S. authorities rail about "drug dealers," "cartels" and "narco-guerrillas," the true kingpins of the illegal drug trade are the banks and institutions that launder the drug money and hoard the profits. It is precisely for them that drug prohibition exists, and that governments protect them by prosecuting the lower levels of the illicit drug trade.
Bush's dishonest "war on terrorism" has so far followed the drug-war model of hypocrisy. He has targeted foreigners and outlaws, while leaving the powerful White Collar Terrorists within the United States to conduct business-as-usual. And thus, the institutional apparatus that funds and ensures future acts of terrorism is left in place, untouched.
Citigroup director Robert Rubin's cynical role as apologist and publicist for White Collar Terrorism did not end when he left his job as Treasury Secretary.
After the September 11th attacks, and the presidential speeches about money laundering by terrorists, Rubin penned a column for the Financial Times of London titled, with a straight face, "Getting Tough on Terror Funding."
"Fighting terrorism on a global scale must include a consistent and co-ordinated approach to stemming the flow of funds to terrorist organizations," began Rubin in his column.
Citigroup Directors Robert Rubin, Alfredo Harp, Roberto Hernández and Sandy Weill
Rubin praised the Clinton administration's actions (in effect, patting himself on the back for his own failures as Treasury Secretary) and also the Bush administration (in effect, polishing the apple for the administration whose complicity Rubin's Citigroup needs to continue business-as-usual).
According to banker Rubin, the U.S. government that regulates his and other banks has been an effective foe of illicit money laundering. In Rubin's self-interested fantasy world, one can close his eyes and almost see the twin towers of World Trade, still standing, and more than 4,000 workers assassinated there, still riding the elevator, smiling from 9 to 5 each day.
"The keys to success in this arena," writes the architect of Washington's failed policies against money-laundering, "are persistence, patience and, especially, international co-operation."
The blame, Rubin implies, lies not with the culture of impunity that allows U.S. bankers the loopholes they need to launder the drug money of despots and mafias across the world. Rubin seeks to point the finger away from his industry's responsibility and profits, toward foreign nations: "to be successful, the US must secure the full co-operation of the international community in adopting policies and procedures to identify, track and block the flow of funds related to money laundering or support for terrorism."
"Many countries," Rubin tells us, "lack the laws, enforcement mechanisms and political will to stem undesirable financial flows. Now is the time to address those weaknesses."
But what about the country where Rubin lives, and the government that regulates his bank?
Perhaps sensing that members of Congress are justifiably concerned that the United States has not effectively stemmed the illegal money laundering business within its borders, Rubin suggests that his fox be deputized to guard the chickens: "It is vitally important that the US government co-ordinate with the private sector throughout this process to maximise the effectiveness of this effort."
But as Rubin makes his hollow calls for "international cooperation," he and his bank are being most uncooperative with Congressional efforts to end money laundering at home, in the financial capital of the world.
Legislation sponsored by Senators Carl M. Levin (D-Michigan) and Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa), according to the Washington Post, "is intended to make it easier for federal authorities to detect and dismantle the financial networks of global terrorists, drug dealers and other criminals."
The Senate Banking committee passed the anti-terror money laundering bill early this month. The Senators complained to the Washington Post that there are "efforts by industry to water down the bill." The Post specifically fingered Rubin's Citigroup and J.P. Morgan bank lobbyists as the perpetrators of the attempted dental surgery upon the legislation, intended, said Senator Levin, to assure that the anti-money laundering provisions would "have no teeth."
At Narco News, we will add this entire affair to our growing list of questions to be posed to Citigroup's Robert Rubin when we place him under oath and depose him in the Drug War on Trial case.
Levin warned that failing to clamp down on this kind of money laundering in the United States "could subjugate national security interests to those of big business."
Catherine Austin Fitts, the former managing director of New York financial powerhouse Dillon Read, warned, more than a year ago, that the United States policies on money laundering would lead to atrocity. She said that U.S. enforcement efforts against money laundering are "designed to make the least possible investment in the appearance of financial integrity, while ensuring that the US can become the premier money laundering country in the world, as well as the premiere reinvestment market for successfully laundered funds."
"Money laundering is the engine" wrote Fitts, in her April 2000 correspondence from the Fountainbleu Hotel in Miami Beach, where she attended Money Laundering Alert's Conference on Money Laundering. "It provides a low cost source of capital to build corporations in a manner that destroys the ability of the customers to maintain their cultural or political organization."
"The US enforcement effort to prevent money laundering is the financial equivalent of landing on Normandy beach with a water pistol," wrote Fitts, who said that even honest law enforcement officials are completely outgunned by the banks, their attorneys and lobbyists in trying to stamp out money laundering. "The Money Laundering Enforcement and Compliance Industry is designed to fail."
Writing from the belly of the beast, Fitts reported in April 2000, "This is the most uptight uncomfortable group I have ever been with. I got into the elevator with a relaxed and fun black guy yesterday. I commented about how uptight this crowd was. He laughed and said "Oh, that is because there are so many spooks around."
"At lunch," Fitts reported from the conference, "the guy from Citigroup was talking with someone from Bank of New York who looked genetically just like him. They were talking about who was 'agency' or not and how they coordinate with the 'agency'. I was wearing blue jeans. I guess they did not realize I would understand what they were talking about."
The 'agency'? This brings us to the "CIA exemption" in U.S. money-laundering laws. One of the tougher U.S. anti-money laundering laws is called the Narcotics Kingpins Act. This act was approved by Congress in 1999 to freeze and seize the assets of drug money launderers. Industry lobbyists worked so hard to weaken that bill that a U.S. Congressmen, on the floor of the House, felt compelled to criticize the "narco-lobbyists" who pressured to gut the bill.
"The narco-lobbyists were paid well," said the Congressman in 1999. Apparently, it is still happening in 2001.
A little-known fact about the Narco Kingpins act is that it provides for a "CIA exemption." Before the U.S. publishes and updates its list of narco-kingpins across the globe whose assets are to be frozen and seized, the list is shown to the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, which has, under the law, a veto power exercised in secrecy. This provision is both to protect criminals and bankers who launder drug money while simultaneously serving as CIA informants, and to give the CIA tremendous power to recruit new informants among corrupt officials and bankers, trading impunity for agency.
How could this be relevant to the September 11th attacks?
The U.S. government and media have placed the blame for the attacks on the organization of Osama Bin Laden and his allies, the Taliban in Afghanistan. Narco News repeats that Washington has not yet offered clear evidence of who may have been behind the crimes of September 11th, as articulately explained by former U.S. Army Special Operations Master Sgt. Stan Goff on our pages.
But Citigroup's Bob Rubin seems to accept the hypothesis that Bin Ladin and the Taliban were responsible. In his Financial Times column, he praises the Clinton and Bush administrations for their actions, prior to September 11th, against Bin Laden and the Taliban, as if they had done any good at all in protecting the victims of September.
"In July 1999," writes Rubin of his salad days at Treasury, his boss, Bill Clinton, "signed an order imposing an asset freeze against the Taliban. The basis of this order was a finding that the Taliban had allowed Osama bin Laden and his al-Qaeda organisation to use its territory as a safe haven and base of operations." Still, if bin Laden and the Taliban were, as Washington claims, responsible for the September 11th attacks, the asset freeze obviously proved impotent.
In Rubin's July of 1999, the U.S. government was still backing the Peru regime of Alberto Fujimori and his strongman Vladimiro Montesinos, despite mountains of evidence linking that regime, and Montesinos in particular, with terrorism and narco-trafficking. It is now undisputed that Montesinos was a CIA "intelligence asset." He was run by the CIA, even as he trampled on human rights and impeded true democracy in Peru - maybe, in fact, because he committed those atrocities.
During that same period, while Citigroup's Robert Rubin was the top U.S. official against money laundering as Treasury Secretary, Citigroup helped Montesinos and his family launder more than $18 million U.S. dollars. This was documented last Spring by Narco News.
Montesinos subsequently fell from grace with Washington and the CIA, became a fugitive, was later apprehended by the government of Venezuela and immediately extradited to Peru, where he is now reportedly incarcerated and awaiting trial for a long list of crimes and corruptions.
Among the large body of evidence against Montesinos are videotapes he made, secretly, of his meetings with officials, including U.S. officials, in his office. Videos that Montesinos had intended to blackmail others now have converted into evidence against him.
On one of those videotapes, filmed in January 2000, Montesinos told a Peruvian official that Bin Laden used Peru's capital city of Lima as his organization's center of Latin American activities. ``This is the rest area," Montesinos was recorded as saying, almost boasting, "not to carry out operations in Lima but to act on white Americans in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and the rest of Latin America.''
The videotape was broadcast on September 21 on the TV station Frequencia Latina in Peru.
The Al Quaida network of Bin Laden could not have enjoyed such refuge in Peru without the approval of Montesinos, who ran Peru with an iron fist, and collected a fee from all whom he protected. This, as the U.S. government, according to Peruvian prosecutors, also gave $10 million dollars to groups under control of Montesinos, and as Citigroup helped launder $18 million dollars in Montesinos' illicit money.
Specifically, Citigroup laundered Montesinos money through its "Private Banking" program; the precise program that would be targeted by the legislation in Washington that Citigroup is lobbying to gut.
Robert Rubin of Citigroup says that "Fighting terrorism on a global scale must include a consistent and co-ordinated approach to stemming the flow of funds to terrorist organizations." Afghanistan is being bombed today for exactly what Citigroup Private Banking client Montesinos did: for giving refuge to Bin Laden's organization.
Meanwhile, Rubin's lobbyists, backed by all the economic and political power of Citigroup, the largest financial institution in the world, are working overtime to make sure that nothing - not even the lessons of September 11th - will be able to stop them from laundering the dirty money of terrorists like Montesinos and those he protected, again and again.
The impunity of White Collar Terrorism, reaping its profits from the U.S. policy of drug prohibition and the corrupt and selective enforcement by the government that protects it, guarantees that Bush's "war on terrorism" is already lost. "Very unpatriotic," comments Senator Grassley of the bankers' lobbying efforts.
Rubin and Citigroup, by placing everyone at future risk to ensure their future Private Banking profits, are very unpatriotic, indeed.