Archive | January 26th, 2012




Tony Greenstein’s blog.

The 30th Conference of PSC promised to be one of the more controversial PSC AGMs and it certainly lived up to it. Entering the conference, who was there giving out blue badges commemorating the massacre at Deir Yassin, but the eminence grise of the holocaust deniers, Paul Eisen – neo-Nazi apologist extraordinaire.

Despite his fulminations against what he calls ‘Zionism’ Eisen is remarkably similar to them. The Zionists exploit the holocaust for their own purposes and Eisen exploits the massacre of Palestinians for his own purposes, i.e. denial of the holocaust and rehabilitation of the Nazis.

The first item on the agenda was a closed session at which the appeal of Frances Clarke Lowes against his expulsion was to be heard. Last April, Francis declared on the Brighton & Hove PSC Discussion List that he was proud to be a holocaust denier. For his pains he was expelled from Brighton PSC and not one voice was raised in his defence in Brighton PSC. I reported his statement to the Executive and sometime in May he was also expelled from national PSC. Francis however had the right of appeal to the national conference and chose to exercise that right.

The speech is printed, in a highly edited version, on (who else?) Gilad Atzmon’s site.

It is fair to say that Clarke-Lowes speech did him no favours. It was extremely anti-Semitic, talking about the ‘Jewish narrative’ and speaking about Jews as a group with common properties. He openly stated that the holocaust was a myth (something Atzmon has not included in his version of the speech). People literally gasped as they heard him describe the holocaust as a ‘myth’ and a number of people told me that if he hadn’t been expelled they would have resigned.

The speech from the Executive, from Hugh Lanning, was superb, moving and to the point. It ended by asking conference not to let evil enter our hearts. Conference upheld the expulsion by 165 vote to 35 with 6 abstension. A couple of days ago I had sent an e-mail to the Secretary of PSC, Ben Sofa, saying that in my opinion a majority was not good enough, we needed at least a 3-1 majority. In the end we got 5-1. In fact it was considerably more because I had not realised that the zany Communist Party of Great Britain – Marxist Leninist, the followers of the hereditary oligarchy otherwise known as the ‘socialist state of North Korea’ had taken a decision to oppose any condemnation of holocaust denial. Their amendment to the Executive’s Motion 2 read:

‘This AGM resolves that PSC’s chief focus shall remain that of building support for Palestine and Palestinians and against zionism and imperialism. It is not the PSC’s job to act as thought police on behalf of zionism and imperialism, and we refuse to ask the Palestinians to bend their narrative to one that is acceptable to zionist ears.’

That so-called communists, led by Harpal Brar and his daughter Joti Brar, think that the Palestinian narrative includes holocaust denial or that there is any contradiction between opposing the denial of the holocaust and opposing imperialism and Zionism is truly amazing. But as Harpal Brar made clear in a subsequent speech he cast no doubt on the fact of the holocaust.

In other words most of those who voted against Clarke-Lowes’ expulsion, did so despite his views on the holocaust and primarily as part of a wider disagreement with PSC Executive. And since they brought virtually all of their membership of about 20 to the conference, it is clear even that that stage that those who had any sympathy with Clarke-Lowes were a tiny handful.

After the lunch break we had a guest speaker, Omar Barghouti from the Palestinian Boycott National Committee. He detailed the increasingly open racism of the state, its attacks on the memory of the Nakba, which has been made unlawful, the shameful decision of the Supreme Court to uphold the Citizenship Law which prevents Israeli Arabs from living with their spouse in side Israel.

It must have been a shock when Omar went out of his way to make it clear that anti-Semitism and holocaust denial were no part of the politics of the Palestinians. ‘Ours is an anti-racist cause’ he stated, in case anyone had failed to decipher the meaning of the speech. He generously paid tribute to PSC as the world’s most effective solidarity organisation and to Britain for leading the way in Boycott. It is a compliment that are indebted to honour and repay.

After Omar’s speech the Executive motion 2 and that from Naomi Wimborne Idrissi were taken, along with all 3 amendments from Gill Kaffash/Rosemary Earnshaw, Exeter PSC and the CPGB-ML (above). All the amendments were heavily defeated with less than 20 votes out of over 250 delegates (the votes in the Executive elections indicate there must have been an increase in people arriving by at least 50). Harpal Brar was the only person to speak with any passion or conviction for the amendments. And to his credit he made it clear that of course he accepted that fact of the holocaust without reservation but that there were a number of other acts of genocide we should condemn – that of the Armenians for example, the Iraqis and others. In other words he was speaking agains the Zionists’ holocaust exceptionalism – the idea that the holocaust of Jews is unique. I agree.

Even Gill Kaffash chose not to mention anything to do with holocaust and instead mounted a free speech argument, coupled with the assertion that we stick to Palestine not extraneous issues. But speaker after speaker, with the exception of Exeter PSC’s constitutionalist Dave Chappell (FBU), made it clear that it was not possible oppose the racism that Palestinians suffer from and yet tolerate holocaust deniers and their associates. A member of the Communications Workers Union, whose name I didn’t catch, made this clear in a particularly impassioned contribution, as did Roland Rance from Jews 4 Boycotting Israeli Goods and other speakers.

In the end both the Executive Motion and the one from J-Big were passed with barely 10 votes, if that, against. A humiliating and crushing defeat for the Atzmonites and holocaust deniers in the movement. In my own speech I quoted Atzmon’s statement that Jews who speak as ‘ethnic’ Jews, i.e. who are Jewish simply reinforced Zionism. I asked how is it that people agreed when UNISON passed boycott policy in 2007, that I should speak as someone who is Jewish precisely in order to take head on the Zionist lies that to support the Palestinians is anti-Semitic? I never received an answer from Atzmon’s few supporters. Nor will I. Because the growing number of Jews who are breaking from Zionism, partially or completely, has been growing, especially in the United States. Only the Zionists and the Atzmonites deplore this phenomenon.

It is the Zionists’ supporters – be it the EDL and BNP in this country – or John Hagee of Christians United for Israel – who described Hitler as god’s messenger sent to drive the Jews to Israel, who are the real anti-Semites, and on this of course Harry’s Place is silent.

Many other motions were also passed including one on the disgraceful attacks on Palestinian children by the Israeli military. It is to the eternal shame of the West that they have nothing to say about the shackling and torture of children even, to say nothing of the shackling of Palestinian women prisoners, even while they are giving birth.

There were discussions about the growing successes of the boycott movement, in particular the loss of a £500m contract for Veolia in West London and tribute was paid to Angus Geddes for his sterling work in this area. The closure of Ahava, the Israeli store that traded in stolen goods was also highlighted as was the Judaification of the Negev. Bernard Regan in particular spoke well on the latter and his experiences when visiting Israel with a delegation.

This is also the 30th anniversary of the foundation of PSC and a motion was passed mandating the Executive to organise series of fundraising activities and celebrations. When you consider what we have had to battle against to build an organisation that has now achieved over 5,000 members, then this is indeed a success and tribute was paid to faithful stalwarts like Jeremy Corbyn MP, Baroness Jenny Tonge and Bruce Kent. It is a measure of our success that when I first became involved in Palestinian politics Gerald Kaufman and Tony Benn were both members of Labour Friends of Israel. Today Gerald Kaufman has sponsored an Early Day Motion with Jeremy Corbyn on the racist Jewish National Fund.

And conference also made us, including myself, realise, that whatever disagreements we may have with the Executive, what we have in common is far greater than that which divides us. For the first time ever I even voted for Bernard Regan for the Executive and he accused me of stealing his lines! A special mention should be made of Ben Sofa, the Secretary, who has never wavered in his support for tackling the issue head on.

Because the Executive realised that if the holocaust deniers had got their way, the trade unions – with their history of fighting fascism – would have disaffiliated and we would be a cacophony of noise without influence. Those who argued that we should concentrate on Palestine and Palestinians failed to recognise that that means you must politically engage with the mainstream of society and that you have, at all costs, not to hand your opponents weapons to attack you with.

People were angry at the constant misrepresentation of Palestinian activists you see on sites like Harry’s Place, a place where only rabid Zionists with cloth ears venture. However it was important when attacked by such people to recognise that whilst their accusations of ‘anti-Semitism’ may be libels 99 times out of a hundred, there are occasions when we have to sit up and take notice.

So it is that Nahida, an Atzmonite in Liverpool branch, where there have been problems, could write that:

‘The crusade against PSC was ignited by Zionists from outside the movement beginning in September, following an article published on the Zionist hate-website Harry’s Place (HP), and a letter from the Board of Deputies of British Jews” (BODBJ), accusing PSC and its branches of publishing anti-Semitic articles and linking to Holocaust denial websites, which arguably is a crude lie. However, the crusade was sustained, promoted and amplified by insiders with questionable loyalty, who roam freely within the Palestine solidarity movement.’ Following those attacks and demands by BOD of British Jews, certain elements inside the solidarity movement picked up where Zionists stopped. Since then they have initiated a campaign of defamation against Palestinian activists (including myself) and numerous other supporters.’

We, i.e. me and members of groups like J-Big, are the ‘inside’ Zionists as opposed to the honest ones. The problem with the Atzmonites is that their arguments and terms of reference are merely an echo of the Zionist argument. They are the reflection of Zionism in much the same way as Zionism was a reflection of anti-Semitism. And as I pointed out, to most Jews, in the pre–holocaust period, Zionism was considered a species of anti-Semitism.

All in a all a very good day for PSC and the Palestinians and an abject defeat for the apologists for Atzmon and Eisen.

Because I was heavily involved in the debate on specific motions, comments would be welcome both on this and the other issues debated at the conference.





Atzmonites: In Coalition

Lucy Lips, January

Gilad Atzmon is a racist and a promoter of Holocaust denial who is active in Palestinian solidarity politics. He has been the subject of a campaign by Britain’s leading anti-racist organisation, Hope Not Hate. Now, he has become a figurehead and rallying point for those within the Palestine Solidarity movement whose politics are motivated by hatred of Jews.

Last weekend, the executive of the National Palestine Solidarity Campaign hit back against the Atzmonites. In a move of great symbolic significance, it expelled Francis Clark-Lowes, the former Chair of the PSC. Francis Clark-Lowes is a man who says that he is “proud to call himself a Holocaust denier“. In support of his expulsion, the current chair of the PSC, Hugh Lanning called on the PSC members “not to let evil enter our hearts“. Four fifths of the meeting voted to expel Clark-Lowes.

The PSC now has a fight on its hands. Twenty percent of its activists attending its Annual General Meeting don’t think that Holocaust deniers and racists should be expelled. Those twenty percent will continue to ask, in the words of PSC activist Gill Kaffash, another supporter of Holocaust denial:

How long do you think it will be until the Jewish Chronicle demands that PSC unreservedly condemn Hamas? And how long before PSC complies? After all, Hamas is obviously ant-semitic – most of the people it attacks are Jewish.

What makes the situation more dangerous for the National PSC is that it has next to no control over its regional branches. The truth is that Atzmon, and many of his crew, are popular among the rank and file of the PSC. Therefore when the local branches invite these racists to their meetings, or even sponsors them, there is nothing that the National PSC can do.

Here is Bristol PSC advertising Atzmon’s next appearance, this coming weekend:

The Atzmonites are hopping mad. They absolutely refuse to be silenced. They have turned their guns on the leadership of the National PSC, who they surprisingly believe that this website “controls”. Here’s Atzmon:

On Saturday the Islamophobic blog Harry’s Place and the Zionist mouthpiece Jewish Chronicle completed their takeover of UK Palestinian Solidarity Campaign (PSC). In the last two years, the PSC EC has expelled and marginalised some of its leading intellectuals amongst them some prominent Palestinian and Muslim activists and now, at last, they are beginning to receive their just credit.

Judging by the scale of the  celebration on Islamophobic Harry’s Place, you’d be forgiven for assuming that PSC – now firmly committed to the struggle against anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial – is now just one more Zionist outlet, whose prime interest is in promoting Jewish tribal interests. I’m sure that the Palestinians in besieged Gaza and in refugee camps all over the Middle East are over the moon.

Helpfully, the Atzmonites have a new outlet. They have established a website magazine: deLiberation. Atzmon’s supporters and friends are writing for it.

Here they are:

Most of Atzmon’s allies are precisely the people you’d expect.You can find loads about them by searching through the Harry’s Place archives.

Some of these names may be unfamiliar to readers. Daniel McGowan, for example, is a former professor a US liberal arts college and founder of “Deir Yasin Remembered” who got into trouble over “Holocaust revisionism” a few years back. Jonathan Blakeley is a Cornish web designer who believes that Nick Lowles of Hope not Hate is a “Hasabara troll“.  Roy Bard is an Indymedia activist who has a history of defending Holocaust deniers. Nahida Izzat, by contrast, appears to be insane.

deLiberation is a helpful barometer. All those who have written for this website are people who have chosen to line up behind racism, extremism and Holocaust denial.

So, lets see which parts of the Palestinian Solidarity movement invites them to speak, or joins them on a platform.

Posted in CampaignsComments Off on WATCH OUT HARRY’S PLACE NAZI PROPAGANDA



Nahida Izzat: Will PSC rise to the Challenge?


As the AGM of Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) approaches, the drive to control, fragment, agitate and to steer away PSC from its fundamental core issues is at all times high.

The crusade against PSC was ignited by Zionists from outside the movement beginning in September, following an article published on the Zionist hate-website Harry’s Place (HP), and a letter from the Board of Deputies of British Jews” (BODBJ), accusing PSC and its branches of publishing anti-Semitic articles and linking to Holocaust denial websites, which arguably is a crude lie. However, the crusade was sustained, promoted and amplified by insiders with questionable loyalty, who roam freely within the Palestine solidarity movement.

Following those attacks and demands by BOD of British Jews, certain elements inside the solidarity movement picked up where Zionists stopped. Since then they have initiated a campaign of defamation against Palestinian activists (including myself) and numerous other supporters.

The smear and defamation campaign, ignited by BODBJ and its mouthpiece HP, is destined to divide and curtail the Palestine solidarity movement. It shrouds itself with a veneer of “ethicality” by invoking bogus concerns about “racism”, while the result is the expulsion of anti-racist activists including Palestinians, and the fragmentation of the Palestine solidarity movement at large, its campaigns being debased, its efficiency being crippled.

The paragraph below is only one piece of evidence that some alleged supporters of Palestine have indeed been engaging in gossip and spreading defamation, rumours and lies. It is but one example of the appalling consequences of such behaviour.

“In Liverpool a Palestinian activist, Nahida, who was once the mainstay of the group, changed almost overnight when she married a sinister Dutchman. Jewish conspiracies took over her life and it was with difficulty that the branch reclaimed its website, which had posted links to her anti-Semitic website (‘Spiders Web’).” Tony Greenstein.

In his latest defamation article, Mr. Greenstein extends his attacks to include yet another Palestinian with this defamatory claim:

“In Liverpool the Friends of Palestine website was taken over by a holocaust denier”

Or another example is his use of insulting expletives in lieu of factual arguments:

“At the AGM there is also a not very clever motion from Gill Kaffash …. It is a stupid motion from the stupid.”

The aim of such vicious crusades, of course, is to discredit the research of those who dig deeper, and to control the boundaries of debate by shooting at those who dare to cross the line. As it appears, no one is “allowed” to investigate neither the deeper ideological motives nor the networks enabling Zionists crimes. No Palestinian is “allowed” to express more assertively the true voice of their people and their deeply anchored aspirations of FULL Liberation.

In this example,Tony Greenstein never met and never had contact with the people he is smearing. He uses lies and fabrications about their private life, to execute ad hominem attacks against them, and to propagate libellous accusations of anti Semitism and Holocaust denial against them. Obviously he has been fed with rumours, which as his blog shows, he never fails to transform in unreadable ramblings. .

I would have assumed that in all logic such attacks from external enemies and their internal contributors, would reinforce the cohesion of the movement, by a reflex of protection. What we see instead, is the disturbing reality of utter silence of other members, or even explicit approval of the attacks by the failure to reject them and sanctioning those who engage in such attacks. The occupiers and enemies of Palestine must be happy and indeed grateful, since the damage to the Palestinian solidarity movement in the UK is already substantial. Suffice to look at the nonsensical amendments and motions put forward, the waste of time and effort, and the harmful evictions and alienation of scores of members and potential members.
Such abhorrent behaviour is allowed to continue within the movement with the compliance of decent members who have swallowed the lies and let them pass unchallenged without demanding thorough investigations of such offence, and without firm rejection, chastisement or sanctions against guilty elements who took part in such smear campaign

As they exclude more and more Palestinians through their defamatory campaign, as they rally themselves up and down the country to attend the AGM, and as they strengthen their position within by appointing themselves as political guides and censors of the solidarity movement; Mr. Greenstein and his clique expose their determination to take over PSC and to define its aims.

It is nothing but deliberate Controlled Opposition, when such individuals silence Palestinians and capture the levers of decision as to what is good for Palestinians, and what is not, and what aims to pursue, and what aims need to be smothered. Has the Palestinian voice not been smothered enough already, after a century of Zionism? Does it not appear evident that post-Zionism is preparing itself to do exactly the same? Why would a campaign who claims itself to be in solidarity with Palestinians, betray the noble aim of enabling Palestinians to freely express their Legitimate and Sovereign Rights?

Instead, Mr. Greenstein and co condescendingly declare that PSC members need “more internal education on Zionism“:

He writes: “On Saturday there will be one motion on anti-Semitism and racism on the agenda from the National Executive. A motion from Naomi Wimborne-Idrissi and myself, which called for more internal education on Zionism, has been amended and accepted by the Executive.”

It is disturbing when the likes of Mr. Greenstein, -who sticks the accusatory label “anti-Semite” (i.e. racist) on whomever disagrees with his views, and who introduces to PSC redundant motions to emphatically re-reject Judeophobic racism and to emphasize yet again on “anti-Semitism”, feels vindicated to surreptitiously collaborate with the incitement of racial and religious hatred against Muslims, when for example he spreads blatant lies against the Islamic Resistance Movements Hamas, and even about the Qur’an, thus joining the ranks of Islamophobes when he propagates such hateful unsubstantiated claim:

“the Quoran also have passages that are chauvinist and today, in the context of state policy, would undoubtedly be deemed racist”

Moreover, Mr. Greenstein, the avid “anti-racist”, finds no shame in propagating Islamophobia by attacking the religion of Islam as whole and publicly participating in division, fomenting hatred and incitement against Muslims by arrogantly pretending that:

“Islam has introduced sectarianism into the Palestinian movement and has nothing to offer but further division”

Imagine for a moment someone writing: “Judaism has introduced sectarianism into the Palestinian movement and has nothing to offer but further division”, one can only imagine the outbursts of wrath, fury, outrage and accusation that would follow, by Mr. Greenstein and co.

With the acceptance of such methods; whereby the defamers give themselves the right to DEFINE the meaning of words like racist, anti-Semite and Holocaust denier, then they allow themselves to ACCUSE, LABEL and DEFAME others with such titles, without any proof or evidence, and without allowing the accused to defend him/her self, they demand the excommunication of those accused and even aim to remove the right of appeal against such accusation, justice becomes a joke!

Regrettably, PSC has exhibited signs of moral fatigue by allowing some of its members to engage in such Zionist-style methods of operation by:

  • Meddling in private affairs of members and using slander and defamation as a political tool (as seen from the writing of Tony Greenstein).

  • The use of the label “Anti-Semitism” as a political tool. By branding those they disagree with, with charges of racism and anti-Semitism (Racism is unlawful according to British law). Completely dismissing the seriousness and the gravity of such allegation, they (carelessly or malevolently) have accused other activists of committing an unlawful offence.

Furthermore, PSC and some of its branches failed in the following:

  • Evading to address the defamation against its members;

  • Escaping the responsibility of launching an investigation to uncover the guilty elements;

  • Failing to understand the real meaning of racism;

  • Failing to identify the REAL racist;

  • Failing to sanction/punish guilty members who engaged in such libellous acts;

  • Failing to apologise to accused individuals for the harm and damages caused.

It has become increasingly apparent that some clique inside the solidarity movement, under the pretext of “fighting anti-Semitism”, are engaged in hijacking, deforming and sidetracking the solidarity movement from supporting the Palestinian people and their cause of Liberation, and instead pushing PSC into morphing into yet another ADL, “witch-hunting” and “book-burning” organization.

Tragically, the excessive and inappropriate use of the word “anti-Semite”, by the likes of ADL (who have their very own definition of the word), and the same pathetic use that has been adopted by some elements inside the solidarity movement -who just like ADL, claim the exclusive right to define the meaning of words and the boundaries of debate, such excessive use by Zionists and anti-Zionist alike, and As I warned before, they have managed to make the word vacuous, meaningless and even a nuisance.

Those whose primary aim is to fight anti-Semitism are better advised to join more appropriate organizations who deal specifically with anti-Semitism, there are myriad of them around.

Those whose main concern is to educate people about the Holocaust, thus enabling Zionists to continue to use and abuse it, in what Dr Finkelstein correctly calls the “Holocaust industry”, should NOT do so on the back and expense of Palestinian and their solidarity movement.

Those interested in bickering and infighting -which only weakens the solidarity movement, would feel more at home working here or even here far and away from our Movement.

People with such divergent aims should stop imposing their agenda on others, and leave PSC to do what it was created for, SUPPORTING PALESTINIANS IN THEIR STRUGGLE FOR LIBERATION.

True Friends of Palestine should not allow themselves to be hoodwinked or sidetracked into adopting other groups’ agendas or doing other organizations’ work.

Diverting PSC from its main aims does not serve the cause of Palestine or the Palestinians.


I call upon PSC and all genuine supporters of Palestine to put an end to this fiasco;

I call upon PSC and all genuine supporters of Palestine to have the courage to stop slanderers and liars from hijacking the solidarity movement, dragging it down and turning it into a bickering stage of accusations and counter-accusations;

I call upon PSC and all genuine supporters of Palestine to have the dignity and cease to alienate/ expel exiled Palestinians by phoney, uncorroborated and unsolicited claims and defamatory allegations;

I call upon PSC and all genuine supporters of Palestine not to allow itself to be steered away from its original aims of supporting the oppressed Palestinians and to stay focused on the daily slaughter of Palestinians.

I call upon PSC and all genuine supporters of Palestine to remember that Palestinians have NOTHING to do with the Holocaust, yet they have been paying the price for it since before it actually even happened!

I call upon PSC and all genuine supporters of Palestine to remember that they are not an association of historians, and ought not to be distracted by the obsession about an historical event that ended almost seven decades ago, instead of focusing on the ongoing genocide against Palestinians and the destruction of their Biblical Land;

I call upon PSC and all genuine supporters of Palestine to rescue itself from being diverted into nonsensical, useless, fruitless, endless debates, which irremediably lead to unnecessary infighting, thus wasting and crippling the movement;

I call upon PSC and all genuine supporters of Palestine to remember that the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian population, and the annexation of their country, has been almost completed while we respond with deference to people whose prime interest is obviously not the restoration of Palestine, or the Rights of Palestinians.

I call upon PSC and all genuine supporters of Palestine not to become an arm of Michael Whine, morphing into a “Holocaust-deniers hunters” instead of trying to stop the ongoing and upcoming genocides of the Middle East;

I call upon PSC and all genuine supporters of Palestine not to allow itself to be misguided and hoodwinked even from comprehending and recognizing of the meaning and manifestation of racism and the real definition of an anti-Semite, Hasn’t the anti-Semitic charge been abused and trivialized enough?

I call upon PSC and all genuine supporters of Palestine not to become deafened by big-mouthed detractors, or blinded by glittery definitions coiled by deception, so as it fails to identify the REAL RACISTS who are worthy to be rejected and fought against.

Finally, I call upon PSC and all genuine supporters of Palestine to take a firm action against malicious trouble-makers, and to expel those who engage in unsubstantiated defamation of other activists.

Such agitators whose exclusive organizations embrace Zionists as full members, those who come loaded with hidden agendas, neither represent Palestine nor Palestinians

Their agenda includes the preparation and facilitation of a prosperous and secure future for the planners, authors and perpetrators of our NAKBA.

They blather about road maps, about deleting the green-line while coercing the Palestinians to forget their inalienable rights to their Historic Palestine.

They aim to deceive Palestinians and the world to accept the terrorists, colonizers, war-criminals, thieves and murderers who occupied Palestine since 1948, they want to promote them as “civilised” “peaceful”, humane”, “Jewish”, “peace-loving” “Israelis”, who should have the same right to the Land of Palestine as Palestinians do!

It is not up to a Netanyahu, Schneerson, or Lieberman, and sure NOT for a Semoff, a Dropkin or a Greenstein to decide for us about the future of our Homeland; it’s not for them to decide what is good for Palestine and what is not, who is allowed to stay and who is not, or who is to be summoned, charged, prosecuted or punished for their decades of genocide and war crimes and who is not.

True friends of Palestine appreciate that ultimately, only Palestinians are entitled to make such decisions, especially after decades of relentless slow genocide. Palestinians are entitled to use whatever appropriate methods of resistance, legal, intellectual, or otherwise to achieve their long-lost Liberty.

True friends of Palestine realize that it is the fundamental and intrinsic core of the Palestinian National Rights, to define, express and publish concepts such as the unhindered Right to Return, Restitution AND Compensation, Liberation of the occupied Homeland, unrestricted Sovereignty including over Immigration Policies, Prosecution of Criminals, etc. Those who smother these fundamental Rights, contribute to the finalization of the Zionist project, itself representing the total negation of all bases of Law, in particular pertaining to Crimes Against Humanity, Wars of Aggression, War Crimes, and ironically, the negation of the Post-WW2 Nuremberg Principles, especially the sixth principle, which were wisely crafted to precisely avoid such horrors to happen again.

My prime concern has always been the cause of Palestine and the Palestinians’ inalienable Human Right of Self-Determination in their own ancestral Land, which they inhabit and protect since thousands of years, continuously. The voice of Palestinians is barely heard in the West. Therefore, those whose aim is to muffle the voice, block the research, contain the freedom and veil the views of Palestinians cannot be truly friends of Palestine.

Real friends are those who want to keep the solidarity movement on the right track, focused on Palestine and the Liberation of Palestine.

Hereby, as a Palestinian exiled from my home for more than 44 years, I affirm my right and the right of my people to aspire to the Liberation of our Homeland and to pursue the intellectual means that will help to achieve that goal, moreover since this goal is the strict reassertion of Human Rights and International Law.

I affirm my right to continue my investigations into the role of global Jewish Zionist networks through their many facets, institutions and organizations supporting, sustaining and propagating the cause of the Zionist entity.

I affirm my right to continue investigating the supremacist ideology that animates the entire Israeli-settler society and to expose its consequences on Palestinians, and beyond.

I affirm my right to continue my activism, to share the results of my work and to connect with people who want to learn about Palestine, without being defamed, censored or chastised by self-appointed gurus.

I affirm my right to defend my reputation and the reputation of my fellow human beings who are wrongfully accused and defamed, and to stand up to those who cause harm to the cause of Palestine, those who use ad hominem attacks, defamation and slander as a political tool to muffle and excommunicate their opponents.

I affirm my right to continue to expose those elements who try to achieve deleterious political aims by controlling and crippling the Palestinian solidarity movement, through the use of debate framing, information filtering, and eviction of activists who step outside the narrow boundaries set by these elements to keep the opposition constricted and limited in its scope and efficiency.

Finally, I call upon the Solidarity Campaign NOT fall prey to such manipulation conducted by individuals with ulterior motives and compromised loyalty who appointed themselves to be in charge of the flow of information, to control the direction of the Palestinian solidarity and to push it towards the acceptance of “soft” yet final and permanent colonization of Palestine, thus to steer it away from its prime objective; the unconditional support of Palestinians and their quest for Full Liberation.


Golden Rule, Ron Paul Booed by Oxymorons


by Tom Valentine


Nothing illustrates the depths to which Our politics have sunk more vividly than this one minute video clipped from the recent Republican debate in South Carolina.

The only human, non- muppet on the stage, including the media types asking questions—Ron Paul—uses the Golden Rule “Do unto others, as you would have them do unto you.” To explain his views on foreign policy and the Republican audience of oxymorons boo him.

Was this the famous southern “Bible thumping” crowd booing the mainstay philosophy of their “lord and savior” Jesus Christ?

Or was this simply the well-fed group of duffers and biddies who come away from their brokers only long enough to root for the moneychangers?

Either way that video is a surefire demonstration of the insanity that has swept America behind the Oxymoron “Israel-first” churches and the likes of Fox corporation, Limbaugh, Hannity, Levin, Boortz and Laura.

In my home we were more dismayed by this telling moment on television than the unconstitutional NDAA getting votes in the Senate.

If any of the incompetent war-on-terror propaganda were true the fear might be somewhat deserved. But the lying propaganda is too obvious for words—Our people perish for lack of street smarts!

The land of my birth has bitten the dust; all that remains is death and destruction—the end times, self-fulfilled. I can no longer do the shopping for my family needs because most of the folks with whom I must mingle are beyond reach of reason and good sense; it is too depressing.

Before I take a calming walk in the woods, I am compelled to confess a grave error in a previous column that likely passed unnoticed: In defining my private Christian beliefs, I allowed a form of chutzpah to defeat humility, an occurrence that taught me how easy it is for man, a mere creature to thrust his thinking into areas reserved for God.

I wrote that the earliest Christians debated the nature of God, and divided good people over “silly, esoteric” matters that did not contribute to absorbing the vital lessons left by Jesus for all of humanity. How foolish of me. To what do I pray? Just another man?

I consider Jesus to have been the “fullness” of God, our Creator, Father, in a conscious sojourn on earth. That covers it for me.

I may aspire to preach the Gospels, and I write of my beliefs, probably too often for public taste, but I see my purpose as an elder journalist, who has experienced a full life on the fringes of power just enough to have certain useful insights. I will be less preachy in the future, as I return to the problems of nuclear technology and the fearsome lies roiling the Internet.

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Newt for Caliph!


Dear Newt Gingrich,

I am writing to volunteer to step in as your new chief campaign adviser, now that your former staff, followers, and prospective voters have deserted you in disgust. I believe I can devise a strategy that will not only get you elected President, despite your recently-revealed foibles, but perhaps even lead to a far more powerful position.

As a Muslim free-speech fanatic, I may seem an unlikely candidate for chief Gingrich advisor. After all, you are on record calling for a “long war” against Islam that will require the US to abrogate its freedom of speech and religious liberty: “This is a serious long-term war, and it will inevitably lead us to want to know what is said in every suspect place in the country…We will adopt rules of engagement that use every technology we can find, to break up their capacity to use the Internet, to break up their capacity to use free speech.”

Newt, the time has come for you to do your last, best political flip-flop: Stop being a Constitution-shredding Islamophobe, and recognize that there’s a freedom-loving Muslim inside you that’s just waiting to come out.

Not long ago, you told your wife: “You need to share me.”  That seems odd, since you’re a fanatic proponent of the Defense of Marriage Act, which defines marriage as “one man and one woman.”

Newt, if you want a “one man and two women” marriage, it’s doable. As a Muslim, you could conceivably marry up to four wives at once.

The only catch is that you’ll have to stop being such a greedy, narcissistic, corrupt, selfish, megalomaniacal asshole.

In Islam, you can’t marry more than one wife unless you are sure you can treat each of them equally well. That’s a tough order – especially since the Qur’an suggests that men CAN’T treat their wives equally well!

So after you come to Islam, you’re going to have to do some serious soul-searching. You’re going to have to give up all of those egocentric traits that make you the most loathsome public figure in America – which is saying a lot. You’re going to have to stop being such a goddamn hypocrite (the Qur’an reviles hypocrites). You’re going to have to stop serving the cause of injustice, and instead work for justice. You’re going to have to dedicate your life to truth, and to the service of Allah through good works. And you’re going to have to become a loyal and loving caretaker to your wife – or wives, if you really think you (and the women concerned) want that.  (Most Muslims don’t; the vast majority of us are in monogamous marriages – as was the Prophet Muhammad, SAAS, for most of his adult life.)

Newt, once you’ve come to Islam, and become a good, pious submitter-to-Allah, just think about the example you’ll set for your fellow Americans! The sleaziest douchebag in the country will have suddenly become a good, God-conscious worker-of-justice and persister-in-truth. People will be astounded; it will seem a miracle. Very quickly, the whole country will follow you to Islam.

Then America will elect you President.

And the Islamic world will elect you Caliph.

And you will have finally realized your ambition: “I have an enormous personal ambition.I want to shift the entire planet. And I’m doing it…Oh, this is just the beginning of a 20-or-30-year movement. I’ll get credit for it…”

The good news is that you will have shifted the planet towards good, rather than evil. The bad news is that once you’ve submitted to Allah, you will no longer be a megalomaniacal lunatic, so being Caliph will be a public service and a burden, rather than an ego-trip.

Sounds like a plan? Just contact me here at kbarrett(at)merr(dot)com and I’ll arrange for you to take shahada and begin life as a new Muslim.

Your future brother in Islam and Grand Wazir (insha’allah)

Dr. Kevin Barrett

Posted in USAComments Off on Newt for Caliph!

Protesting Internet Censorship


by Stephen Lendman


On May 12, Senator Patrick Leahy (D. VT) introduced “S. 968: Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act of 2011 (PROTECT IP).” Referred to the Judiciary Committee, May 26 hearings were held. Debate’s scheduled for next week.

On October 26, Rep. Lamar Smith (R. TX) introduced “HR 3261: Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA): To promote prosperity, creativity, entrepreneurship, and innovation by combating the theft of US property, and for other purposes” Referred to the House Judiciary Committee, markup continues.

Leahy, Smith, and congressional supporters claim the measures protect corporate investments against online piracy. In fact, they’re about censorship and subverting Internet freedom.

If enacted, Internet service providers (ISPs), search engines, and other information location tools will have to block user access to sites accused (rightly or wrongly) of very loosely defined copyright infringement.

In other words, they’ll blacklist and shut them down arbitrarily to silence them. Media giants will have unprecedented powers. So will Congress and the administration. Internet freedom will be jeopardized. So will a free and open society.

Provisions empower the Attorney General to cut off access and funding for alleged “parasite” foreign and domestic sites. An Internet czar will decide if US interests are harmed. Courts will enforce police state rulings.

Both bills are so deeply flawed, they can’t be fixed. Killing them is the only option.

Global Protest‘s web site headlines, “WEB GOES ON STRIKE! saying:

“January 18, 2012 is the largest online protest in history, to stop the Internet censorship bills, SOPA & PIPA. Join in by blacking out your site and urging everyone you can reach to contact Congress now.”

With many others, Wikipedia‘s “blacking out the English (site) for 24 hours, beginning at midnight January 18, Eastern Time.” During the blackout, information on SOPA and PROTECT IP will stay available.

Google‘s site headlined, “End Piracy, Not Liberty,” saying:

SOPA and PROTECT IP will “censor the Internet and slow economic growth in the US.”

“Tell Congress: Don’t censor the Web.”

It also urges readers to sign a petition, expressing opposition to Congress.

January 18′s just the beginning. On January 23, a day of action’s planned when the Senate reconvenes. Despite growing opposition, supporters want quick action to pass PROTECT IP, SOPA’s companion bill.

The Battle to Save Internet Freedom

On January 16, the Electronic Freedom Foundation (EFF) headlined, “How PIPA and SOPA Violate White House Principles Supporting Free Speech and Innovation,” saying:

Despite alleged White House opposition, “the fight is still far from over.” Senate debate begins next week. Expect House action to follow soon. In fact, chief SOPA sponsor, Rep. Lamar Smith (R. TX), said markup will proceed in February.

Internet freedom’s on the line. So aren’t First Amendment rights without which all others are at risk. EFF explained worrisome provisions, including:

(1) Alleged copyright infringement lets government suppress information it wants censored.

(2) ISPs, search engines, and other information tools will be forced to comply.

(3) Web sites will have to “block anything from a user post about browser add-ons like DeSopa, to a simple list of IP addresses of already-blocked sites.”

(4) Vague language gives authorities broad discretion.

(5) Investments in online startups will be affected.

(6) Open source software will be decimated.

(7) A “vigilante” provision grants immunity to ISPs for over-blocking “innocent users or block sites voluntarily with no judicial oversight at all.” As a result, abuse potential is incalculable. Moreover, intermediaries only need show “good faith” and act on what they deem “credible evidence.”

(8) Copyright holders will be able to get unopposed court orders to cut off foreign sites from payment processors and advertisers.

(10) The Attorney General will be authorized to block domain name services and be able to de-list sites from search engines. According to Google chairman Eric Schmidt, it “criminalize(s) linking and the fundamental structure of the Internet itself.”

The same provision applies to payment processors and advertisers.

In addition, heavy litigation costs will deter falsely accused sites from contesting a guilty until proved innocent dilemma effectively. They could go broke trying.

As a result, SOPA and PROTECT IP will “drastically change the way we use the Internet (for the worse), and punish millions of innocent users” who never thought about copyright infringement. According to Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian:

These bills are “the equivalent of being angry and trying to take action against Ford just because a Mustang was used in a bank robbery.”

“These bills must be stopped,” says EFF, “if we want to protect free speech and innovation on the web.”

“Please take action now and tell your Congressional representative you oppose the blacklist bills.”

Do it easily on EFF’s

EFF’s one-page guide about the blacklist bills also provides relevant information to review and share with others.

Heavyweights Face Off on Both Sides

Powerful interests represent both sides. Opponents include Google, Yahoo, Amazon, eBay, Facebook, Twitter, AOL, You Tube, Linkedin, Mozilla, Roblox, Reddit, the Wikimedia Foundation, EFF, the ACLU, Human Rights Watch, the libertarian CATO Institute, the Library Copyright Alliance (including the American Library Association), and dozens of others.

Virtually the entire tech industry united in opposition, including Adobe, Apple, Dell, Electronic Arts, Intel, Intuit, McAfee, Microsoft, Nintendo, Sony (excluding Sony Music and Picture), Sybase, Symantec, and many others.

Some initially offered support, then softened positions. In a joint statement, they said:

“Valid and important questions have been raised about the(se) bill(s). As (they) now (stand, they) could sweep in more than just truly egregious actors.” Redefinitions of who can be prosecuted are needed. “Unintended consequences must be avoided.”

“Due process, free speech, and privacy are rights (too important to) be compromised.” The Business Software Alliance (BSA) “has long stood against filtering or monitoring the Internet. All of these concerns should be duly considered and addressed.”

Supporters include News Corp’s Rupert Murdoch, AFL-CIO, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Chamber of Commerce, Motion Picture Association of America, Recording Industry Association of America, National Association of Broadcasters, McGraw-Hill, Macmillan US, other book publishers, Viacom, other companies with cable, film and music interests, trademark dependent companies like Nike and L’Oreal. ASCAP, Caterpillar, Ford, Comcast, the NBA, NCAA, MLB, Netflix, Philip Morris, Pfizer, Time Warner, Wal-Mart, and many others.

In over 90,000 local groups, Meetup has more than 10 million people involved. Its web site headlines, “Meetups mobilize against PIPA and SOPA,” saying:

The 20,000-member strong New York Tech Meetup (NYTM) “declared an emergency (January 18) Meetup” outside the New York offices of Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand.

NYTM’s “calling on every concerned resident to take to the streets. In solidarity, the Hackers and Founders Meetup of the Bay area scheduled their own Meetup to rally” support.

Other actions will follow.

On January 17, Save the headlined “Momentum Builds Against SOPA and PIPA,” saying:

“Millions of Internet users have succeeded in slowing down the Hollywood-funded momentum of the bills.” After initially staying largely silent, the major media “finally w(oke) up.”

A Final Comment

A White House statement tried having it both ways, saying:

“We will not support legislation that reduces freedom of expression, increases cybersecurity risk or undermines the dynamic, innovative global Internet.”

At the same time, it said “online piracy is a real problem that harms the American economy, threatens jobs for significant numbers of middle class workers and hurts some of our nation’s most creative and innovative companies and entrepreneurs.”

It also “call(ed) on all sides to work together to pass sound legislation this year that provides prosecutors and rights holders new legal tools to combat online piracy originating beyond US borders.”

It was typical Obama, feigning opposition while supporting the bills’ core provisions.

At issue is a free and open Internet, the last frontier of free expression. At this stage, it’s very much up for grabs.

Posted in USAComments Off on Protesting Internet Censorship

The New Normal: Economic Weakness and Decline


by Stephen Lendman


On Friday, S & P cut credit ratings for nine EU countries, including France, Italy, Spain, Austria, Portugal, Malta, Slovenia, Slovakia and Cyprus. It was old news but not good.

France was downgraded from AAA to AA+.

So was Austria.

Italy fell two levels from A to BBB+.

Spain was lowered two levels from AA- to A.

Portugal fell two levels to BB.

Cyprus was lowered two levels.

Malta, Slovakia and Slovenia were downgraded one level.

On January 16, S&P also cut the European Financial Stability Facility’s (EFSF) credit rating given added pressure on nations to fund it, saying:

“We consider that credit enhancements that would offset what we view as the now-reduced creditworthiness of the EFSF’s guarantors and securities backing the EFSF’s issues are currently not in place.”

“We have therefore lowered to AA+ the issuer credit of the EFSF, as well as the issue ratings on its long-term debt securities.”

In early December, S & P put 15 EU countries on credit watch. Fourteen remain there suggesting more cuts coming. Especially troubled nations include Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece, and Spain. As they go, so go others, including economic powerhouse Germany. Increasingly it looks weak. So does Britain.

The same day, talks between Greece and major creditors collapsed. They want higher returns in return for taking a 50% haircut on worthless junk. It’s reflected in one-year Greek bonds. They yield 396% annually if they’re around that long.

Hungary’s also troubled. Its bonds are rated junk. Western European lenders control 80% of Hungarian banking. They caused the nation’s troubles. Prime Minister Viktor Orban wants more financial control, and why not. Western exploitation wrecked the economy.

Nonetheless, Brussels wants him to implement greater austerity and threatened legal actions for failure to do so. Earlier, bailout negotiations broke down after Budapest refused to cut public spending and implemented new constitutional provisions asserting greater central bank control.

Perhaps other troubled Eastern European countries will follow Hungary’s lead if it doesn’t cave under pressure.

Everything tried to resolve Europe’s debt crisis failed. Friday’s downgrades suggest more to come. They, in turn, indicate higher borrowing costs and less confidence in troubled countries’ solvency.

As France’s creditworthiness declines, so does euro value. S & P warned about escalating crisis conditions, citing:

  • tightening credit conditions;

  • increased risk premiums for growing numbers of Eurozone countries;

  • “a simultaneous attempt to deliver by governments and households;”

  • weakening growth prospects; and

  • indecision about how to resolve a deepening crisis.

It also said reform based on fiscal austerity “risks becoming self-defeating” because of less disposable income, tax revenues, and fewer jobs. Of course, S & P and other financial interests want continued structural adjustment harshness, including layoffs, deeper wage and benefit cuts, sweeping privatizations, and deregulation.

On January 15, Financial Times writer Edward Luce headlined, “We’re back to the phantom future,” saying:

“We may be entering that economic twilight zone again.” Days earlier, pundits were celebrating America’s recovery. Their relief’s now suspended. Visible weakness suggests “the horses may not be racing out of the gates in 2012 as some anticipated.”

Perhaps forecasters see “low visibility” for America’s economy. It might become “an epitaph for our times. It may also help to remind ourselves just how bad the forecasters have been.”

A Berkeley study years back found that monkeys aiming at a dartboard outguessed them. Just released 2006 Fed transcripts showed policy makers oblivious to the impending storm. Bernanke said at the time:

“I think we are unlikely to see growth being derailed by the housing market. But I do want us to be prepared for some quarter-to-quarter fluctuations.”

In fact, he spoke near the peak of America’s greatest ever housing bubble still imploding with no end in sight. The entire economy’s affected with it. Talk of turning the corner obscures weakening, not improving, economic prospects.

In fact, safe havens are fast disappearing. When it comes to sovereign credit, only a handful retain triple-A ratings, and those with them show weakness.

It’s spreading, not easing. Eurozone countries are sick. Economist David Rosenberg called downgrading France “a pretty big deal. (S & P) laid down the gauntlet that kicking the fiscal dan down the road is no longer a strategy undeserving of a response.”

Moreover, 14 countries remain on credit watch. Expect further downgrades ahead. Greece is bankrupt. Spain, Portugal and Italy are basket cases. So is Eastern Europe. Germany’s now contracting. So is Britain. Banking and finance are sinking. US retail sales and exports are slumping.

China risks landing hard. America’s record low 10-year Treasury yield shows weak macro conditions. Initial jobless claims are rising. In the past 30 months, the labor force contracted by nearly one million. In the last two months alone, it dropped by 170,000. This reflects people wanting jobs who can’t find them.

Challenger data suggest less hiring. JOLTS data show more firings, and the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) indicates fewer job openings.

According to Barron’s Rountable analyst Felix Zulauf in response to the question, “What happens at the next level of turmoil?”:

“The banking system goes broke. Assume Greece won’t repay anything, or at most 10% of its total debt. It is not just the government but the private sector that is bust. That means banks in other countries will be in trouble, which means they will be nationalized.”

“Governments won’t have the money to pay for this, so they will assume more debt. That is the chain of events I expect in 2012, and if you believe it won’t affect the US you are dreaming.”

In 1979, Europe’s Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM) was introduced as part of the European Monetary System (EMS). It aimed to propel the continent to one European currency unit (ECU). It never worked.

In his 1995 book titled, “The Rotten Heart of Europe,” euro expert Bernard Connolly said:

“the true story of the ERM has been one of duplicity, skullduggery, conflict; of economic harm done to every country and in the caste interests of the elite; of the distortions of economic logic and the dilution of political accountability.”

“The implication is that increasing globalization of economic activity and mobility of production, has been purposely implemented in such a way as to render an already destroyed ‘nation-state’ a meaningless entity in economic terms.”</blockquote>

Provisions of the 1992 Maastricht Treaty established the euro. In 1995, the name was officially adopted. Its use began in December 1998. Seventeen dissimilar countries adopted it as their sole currency. They’re trapped disastrously in its straightjacket.

In the mid-1990s, Connolly called establishing it a hairbrained idea doomed to fail. Saying it cost him his job as EU monetary affairs department head. He saw disaster coming before the train left the station. The moment of truth draws closer.

Progressive Radio News Hour regular Bob Chapman said Germany and France want “new rules for budgetary discipline.” Their new plan’s the same as the old one. They feature austerity and ECB mega-loans for countries and banks.

“There will be no real changes, just more debt. This is more obfuscation because nothing is being done” to resolve debt problems and jump-start economic growth. Banks and sovereigns keep borrowing more money. The ECB provides it. The Fed supplies it. It’s creating trillions out of thin air. The entire system can’t function without periodic money injections.

“The bottom line is there was no control before and there will not be any in the future. These incompetents stagger from one problem to another in their futile endless search for world government.”

As a result, Europe sinks deeper in trouble. This year will be tough and 2013 tougher.

GEAB‘s Latest Economic Assessment

On January 16, the Global Europe Anticipation Bulletin (GEAB) issued its latest economic assessment titled, “Global Systemic Crisis – 2012: The year of the world’s great geopolitical swing,” saying:

The year 2012 will reflect “great geopolitical swing: a phenomenon which will without any doubt be the bearer of serious difficulties for most of the planet but which will also allow the emergence of geopolitical conditions favorable to an improvement of the situation in the years to come.”

Crisis will touch the last “untouchables,” including America, Britain, the dollar, Treasuries, and “Russian and Chinese leaders.” In 2012, popular anger will “massively” increase. People will assert themselves enough perhaps to mark a “turning point” for eventual better times.

“The great swing of 2012 is also the accelerated by collapse of the Western banks and financial institutions’ power….And the great swing is finally the arrival at maturity of the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa).”

They’ll start asserting a more pro-active influence on international decisions. They better given the mess Western nations made of things.

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Why Did Pentagon Completely Confuse China?



Sichuan Earthquake: Did Pentagon Completely Confuse China About What It Was Up To?


  by  Trowbridge H. Ford

editing  Jim W. Dean


National Intelligence Director Mike McConnell’s inaugural address in June 2007 about cancelling the Misty satellite program – what Republican Congressman Peter Hoekstra, Republican Chairman of the House Select Committee on Intelligence, conveniently said was a serious compromise of national security – was a most clever move to persuade America’s opponents to think that it would not have undetected space ability to destroy their capability to defend themselves, whether it be tracking such weapons or destroying them in case of war.

It seemed that America had only two such satellites according to Professor Jeffrey Richelson, author of The Wizards of Langley – one put up in 1990 and another in 1999 – and the cancellation apparently left America naked to its potential enemies, as the first one was certainly not even still airborne, as satellites only have a shelf-life of about six to eight years, and time was clearly running out on the second one if it was still in the sky.

The ending of the $9.5 billion project, way over budget, was justified because America no longer needed stealth satellites to spy on the defunct Soviets but smaller, trickier ones after the 9/11 attacks to track down difficult “…terrorist cells and underground sites for nuclear programs run by countries such as Iran and North Korea.” (Associated Press, “Spy Chief Scraps Satellite Program,” June 21, 2007)

Loren Thompson

Lexington Institute’s Loren Thompson, an independent space weapons expert, confirmed that the budgetary decision was indeed a fact, while Congresswoman Heather Wilson, the top Republican on its intelligence panel, downplayed the consequences of the termination by explaining that some of the technology developed by the Misty program could be used in other ones, though she conveniently declined to provide any examples.

Of course, distinguishing stealth satellites from image and radar-seeking ones is a most false one as all satellites should have a stealth capability so that they can most effectively do what they are designed to do, whether it was to capture images of Soviet ICBMs going on line for a possible launch, or discover bunkers of some potential enemy where its nuclear weapons are stored.

Without a stealth capability, the ICBMs might only be prepared for launch during overcast conditions, or the potential enemy might move them underground which prevents them from being seen under any conditions.

The distinction, in short, seems to have been disinformation to confuse potential targets of America’s satellites from suspecting what it was preparing for.

The problems with this public demonstration was that its disclosures were largely belied by what the Air Force Secretary Michael Wynne had said months before.

In an article about Chinese ground-based lasers blinding US image and radar satellites, the usually tight-lipped Wynne said that America still had an “enormous” lead over the Chinese in space, and, consequently, the Pentagon and the American public should not be worried.

The US had at least three heavy satellites of the Keyhole-Lacrosse-Misty kind, so even if one of them became inoperable or crashed, it would still have its normal complement for dealing with the problem.

As for what the real complement of space satellites of military value the Pentagon had, there was still that infamous National Reconnaissance Office shoulder patch which showed four satellites, three apparently of an image-making variety, and one with a radar-destruction capability – what a big airborne laser could achieve.

KH-11 ‘Key Hole Spy Satellite

Director Donald Kerr had replaced it because it was too revealing of their offensive capabilities.

The replacement patch did not change the agency’s capability, though, only provided a less alarming cover of what it was capable of – what illustrated in spades the capability that Wynne had alluded to.

At this time, the American government was preventing the publication of Danny B. Stillman’s book, Inside the Chinese Nuclear Weapons Program – a big book about what he had learned while he was working at the Los Alamos National Laboratory, finishing up as its intelligence director.

Stillman had visited China nine times during the 1990s, obtaining a good view of what Deng Xiaoping had had rebuilt in the mountains near Chengdu after the 1976 earthquake in Tangshan – the one apparently destroyed by Soviet airborne lasers – had effectively wiped out its first nuclear establishment.

During Stillman’s visits to China, he learned all about its Institute of Nuclear Physics and Chemistry around Mianyang; Beichnan – the home of the father of China’s nuclear program, Deng Jiaxian – the nuclear research, testing, and manufacturing center way up west in the mountains at Dashita; and the nuclear underground assembly and storage facilities still further north in this most remote area.

When Stillman tried to get the courts to overturn the refusal by the CIA, the Defense Intelligence Agency, and the Pentagon to allow the publication of 23 long passages in the manuscript despite the contracts he had signed about disclosures – what, in effect, gutted the project’s attractiveness – he finally failed, the Appeals Court for the District of Columbia explaining that its publication could,

“…cause serious damage to national security, create serious risks to intelligence sources and methods, and/or cause significant strategic and diplomatic setbacks to the United States. The Court also is convinced that the disputed passages contain information that is not in the public domain.” (Danny B. Stillman v. Central Intelligence Agency)

It did not require a rocket scientist to determine that the manuscript was a road map to the essentials of China’s nuclear capability.

Its publication might ruin future efforts to mine what it was developing, and its outcome might well result in a serious setback to Chinese-American relations.

The reason why the American defense establishment fought so hard against the publication of Stillman’s manuscript was because it was most concerned about China’s possible proliferation of nuclear technology to Libya, Pakistan, North Korea and other rogue states – what could well call for focused counter measures to punish the growing Pacific power.

When it was finally learned through Colonel Qaddafi that Beijing had indeed been helping these powers gain a nuclear capability through its help in providing them with the technology for generating electricity through atomic power, Washington was understandably looking for ways of stopping the process.

China justified the covert operation in the hope of stopping India from becoming the primary player in the region by helping Pakistan and possibly others keep up with its nuclear achievements.

Any doubts about what Stillman and his associate Thomas C. Reed were up to when he visited China were completely ended when they published in 2009 many details about them in The Nuclear Express, as these quotations amply demonstrate:

“At every stop within China, Stillman found English-speakers translating U. S. documents night and day, alumni of prestigious and lesser-known U. S. schools working the problems, and a suffocating attention to every scrap of information dropped by visitors.” (pp. 127-8)

The Chinese test site area (known as Milan) is seven times larger than the U. S. Nevada Test Site. It is an electronically secure facility.” (p. 354)

“But there is another advantage to an atmospheric test ban: the privacy it gives the testing nation. Without tests in the atmosphere, competing and inquisitive neighbors cannot collect fallout debris. They will have a harder time understanding the devices tested by their rivals, it becomes easier for the testing nation to bluff.” (p. 128)

“That reactor, FBR-2, was capable of delivering an intense flux of neutrons and gamma rays within microseconds, thereby simulating the radiation emitted during an actual nuclear device detonation.” (p. 227)

“This was Stillman’s second visit to that epicenter of Chinese nuclear weapons technology (Science City), and it was far more informative than the first. He was taken to see high-explosive test facilities, chambers capable of containing the debris from the detonation of a dozen pounds of high-explosives wrapped around heavy metals simulating uranium.” (Ibid.)

“For reasons not clear, in 1999, the American door into China’s nuclear world slammed shut.” (p. 229)

“The coming of the internet has brought an awareness of wealth disparity to rural China. It has also made possible the near-instantaneous assembly of huge crowds to protest dam-building, land-seizures, or simple mismanagement. If one such protest burns out of control. a hundred million Chinese will know about it with in and hour. Could the establishment within the cities withstand such spontaneous combustion? Probably not…” (pp. 233-4)

Any understanding or concern about this turn of events was completely undermined by the finishing touches that Naomi Klein put to The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism.

Earthquakes, especially their causes, were not even considered disasters except when she was alluding to the consequences of the Indian Ocean tsunamis in Sri Lanka.

Thanks to the role of climate change, she claimed, “disaster generation can therefore be left to the market’s invisible hand.” (p. 540)

No conspiracy theories were required for dealing with all the disasters, only how their consequences were handled. There was no more a conspiratorial dimension to disasters than thinking that the US government “…had a hand in the 9/11 attacks or took no action to stop them ‘because they wanted the United States to go to war in the Middle East’.”(p. 539)

This was all apparently written with a straight face while recounting that “…hurricanes, cyclones, floods and forest fires (were) all increasing in frequency and intensity,” (p. 525) while Lockheed Martin, the aerospace giant noted for making satellites, missiles, airborne lasers, integrated defense systems, and the like, was taking in $25 billion of taxpayer money in 2005 alone, more than the gross national product of 103 countries, and more than a good bit of the US government itself.

In recounting what it made, she somehow left them out, preferring to site its running the government’s computer systems, data management, sorting the mail, totaling up one’s taxes, running space flights, and monitoring air traffic.

The disparity between what Lockheed Martin manufactures, and what Klein said it does seems more than accidental, especially when one reads what she said about Boeing, the giant airplane, satellite, and arms manufacturer.

Boeing is now particularly known for its lasers, airborne weapons, and integrated defense systems but she made it look more like simply a civilian aviation industry which has sprouted into making a $2.5 billion project to fence off Canada and Mexico from the USA with electronic sensors, unmanned aircraft, surveillance cameras and eighteen hundred towers. (p. 555)

She even mentioned it providing $20 million to start up Neocon Richard Perle’s Trireme Partners, a venture capital firm to develop products and services for homeland security and defense. (p. 405)

Tiananmen Square – The Price of Protest

As if this wasn’t strange enough, Ms. Klein added that Deng Xiaoping’s China was primed for a bout of disaster capitalism because of its having adopted a double dose of the Chicago boys’ shock treatment – the first to open up its command economy to globalization, and the second when it crushed the protesters at Tiananmen Square in 1989.

With the eradication of popular opposition to Deng Xiaoping’s radical reforms, the Chinese leadership risked terrible blowback if there was some kind of disaster, especially if it exposed helter-skelter work that was done in the process.

The raw terror of the suppression, she concluded, kept the country quiet for awhile, but it was now increasing in incidence and vehemence. “China too,” Klein concluded, “is coming out of shock.” (p. 579)

In so concluding, Ms. Klein overstated the role of Party General Secretary Zhao Ziyang and future President Jiang Zemin had played in the showdown with the rebellious students, thanks to their meeting with Neocon rabblerouser Milton Friedman – what she thought indicated a serious division within the Party leadership over how to deal with the protests, and threatened a new civil war.

Actually, Zhao never really saw himself as the instigator of serious trouble, and didn’t realize that he had been sent into exile until years after the uprising had been suppressed.

In the process, she vastly overstated how many had been killed, two to seven thousands (p. 237), rather than the 300 to 700 – what indicated that China was less of a powder keg than she thought.

To set the stage for triggering the still necessary disaster, McConnell made his pursuit of bringing down the Misty satellite an open obsession, as I have already discussed: Knocking Down Misty Satellite Least Dangerous Option 

The demonstration knockdown was to show the Chinese leadership that Washington could knock down its own, spent satellites with a missile too – what Beijing had secretly done to one of its own satellites two years previously, starting the whole process of somehow figuring how to deal with the troublesome Chinese – but more important to show that the Pentagon apparently no longer had such radar satellites to take the offensive..

After the Misty satellite was knocked down, the Air Force could have failed to keep track of its falling debris, leading to the first loss of one of its famous stealth bombers, a B-2, while it was taking off from Anderson Air Force Base in Guam, to confirm the shoot down.

At least, that was the way it seemed when the Air Force provided a video of the group of four B-2s taking off.

After the first one lifted off without difficulty, the second one was doing the same until right after liftoff when apparently a piece on the runway bounced up, hitting the trailing edge of its left wing, causing its engine to explode, and the plane quickly crashing in front of the control tower, the two pilots ejecting safely in the split-second, slam-bang operation.

It all almost seemed staged to give the impression that the Air Force was hopelessly out of control in any operations.

For more, see this link: Calling Guam! – Did Misty Debris Bring Down B-2 Stealth Bomber?

America’s covert government then sprang into high gear, hoping that its actions to help loosen Chinese control of Tibet would ultimately so shake its control in other foreign areas, especially Myanmar and North Korea, and even domestically that its continued existence would be placed in jeopardy.

The campaign was triggered by the Dalai Lama, head of Tibet’s government in exile, condemning China’s brutal rule of the country in anticipation of the 50th anniversary of the failed coup in 1959 – what was precipitated by the successful flight of the 14th Dalai Lama when it really commenced.

The current one’s speech triggered riots in Lhasa and throughout the country, resulting in the death of many ethnic Chinese residing there, and of some Tibetan protesters.

The results did not augur well for similar Chinese living in Myanmar and North Korea if further rioting occurred, thanks to unexpected events or disasters.

Tibet’s continuing plight reminded the CIA all too well about its own troubled past in the isolated country.

Its first two heroes, Douglas Mackiernan and Hugh Redmond, had died in trying to prevent the Chinese communists from occupying the country, and then promoting its rollback.

Mackiernan had been killed, beheaded, and buried in an unmarked grave by Tibetan border guards while entering the country in 1950, hoping to mobilize the Muslims in surrounding areas of western China against Mao’s advancing People’s Liberation Army.

The Only Photo I Could Find of Hugh Redmond – With His Mother

As Ted Gup wrote in The Book of Honor: The Secret Lives and Deaths of CIA Operatives, “…a key part of his mission was to embolden and advise the very resistance…” (p. 20) which he had only alluded to in a letter to his wife.

A Rare Photo Doug MacKiernan (center) – Before He Was Killed

In a dedication service at CIA headquarters in 1997, DCI George Tenet revealed that MacKiernan was its first agent to die while doing foreign service for it, and his name which had not been revealed in Gup’s book.

Redmond’s mission in 1951 was to infiltrate as a foreign illegal operative, posing as a business man, the newly established communist regime with agents recruited from Shanghai in the hope of mounting resistance against it through acts of sabotage. (p. 50)

Redmond was simply rounded up, though, by the communist authorities as a security measure, and languished in prison for the next nineteen years after having been convicted of espionage in 1954.

In 1970, just when young Robert Gates – later to become DCI himself, and recently the Secretary of Defense – was starting his career with the Agency in earnest, it was shocked to learn that Redmond had finally committed suicide after a covert ransom plan, involving famous Americans, and a $1,000,000 in Agency funds, to gain his release had failed.

And then there was the plight of other agents, and missionaries who finally were freed by Beijing. China, in sum, was the biggest source of losses by the CIA, even bigger than the former USSR, and it was high time for a payback for all its setbacks – what Tenet had started with the laser-guided bombing of the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade during the campaign to force Serbia’s Slobodan Milosevic to withdraw his forces from Kosovo, due to its “faulty information”.

Gup concluded: “This was paired with scandalous accounts of Chinese spying at U.S. nuclear weapons labs and wholesale theft of America’s most sensitive secrets.” (p.371)

To give added credence to this claim about “wholesale theft of America’s most sensitive secrets”, and provide insurance against being seen as the culprit as the countdown of the attack against China neared its end, the Justice Department was putting the finishing touches on its indictment of fall guy Dr. J. Reece Roth – an expert on plasma technology, what the latest Misty satellites were equipped with to make them undetectable by Chinese radar – for spying for Beijing.

J. Reece Roth

Roth was working with graduate students from China and Iran on protecting drones with plasma technology, and had visited China twice to help in the research.

Upon his return in 2006, he was arrested by the FBI, and it ultimately determined that Roth’s lack of concern about the security of his research, especially allowing his assistants to see many Defense Department articles about plasmas, constituted espionage, and, like Samuel Loring Morison back in 1985, Roth faced a long time in prison if convicted of the 18 counts.

To pull off an earthquake around China’s nuclear weapons center in Sichuan with the least cause of suspicions, the Air Force heated up with its latest Misty laser satellite Cyclone Nargis in the Bay of Bengal in late April 2008, much like it had Hurricane Katrina when it passed by Cuba in 2005, changing its direction to the northeast, and having it slam into the militarily-led Myanmar with deadly consequences.

Its junta had long been on the Pentagon’s hit list because of its close relationship with China, and its continued holding hostage of democratically elected Aung San Suu Kyi.

Its generals simply did not know what had hit it, and how to respond to its devastation, as this link recounts:

While the world was mesmerized by how the Burmese junta would react to the devastation Nargis had wrought, especially how it would treat the help offered by the French and Americans in ships lying offshore, the US Air Force turned the aim of its space weapons upon targets northwest of the Sichuan area in China, the desert where its qanats were attacked, causing a minor earthquake which loosened the connections between the Indian and Asian plates, hoping to destabilize the connections at their other end where the threats of underground facilities collapsing, landslides, rock falls, cave-ins, dams bursting, viaduct failures and the like had been increased by Chinese secret development of the area.

It was all very similar to what the USS Jimmy Carter did to the Indian-Australian plate’s connection to the Antarctic one in anticipation of the earthquake which occurred two days later where it met the Burmese one.

As the process moved to the Wenchuan area further south, the signs of an impeding but most unexpected earthquake increased, leading to all kinds of warnings to officialdom, but Beijing could not afford to heed them because of the rapidly approaching Olympic Games.

China was caught between the proverbial rock and a hard place. If it reacted vigorously to the reports – say even attempting to shoot down the offending Misty satellite, an apparent act of war – it risked the most expensive Games turning out to be a non-event.

If it did nothing, it seriously risked national security, especially if the suspected earthquake turned out to be a massive disaster. In sum, it just had to act as if nothing serious was happening, and hope that whatever happened would not threaten the regime itself.

Earthquake Clouds – China

Starting on May 2nd, there were increasing reports of cloud formations coming from Sichuan, a precursor of a large earthquake occurring according to Professor Zhonghao Shou’s vapor theory about their cause, though he was surprisingly quiet about it all, leading one to suspect that the Pentagon had shut him up too by making him sign secrecy contracts in order to receive remuneration.

Ever since 1991, Papa Bush had insured that no federal employees could blow the whistle on anything the government did except waste, fraud, and waste to Congress. (Angus Mackenzie, Secrets: The CIA’s War at Home, p. 171)

A laser was apparently causing them, peppering the open, loose area with beams which increasingly shook and dried out all the underground places where water was.

The whole area was a kind of qanat system where man had helped nature in opening up the whole area to catastrophic collapse.

When the Air Force became worried that the Chinese might be on to what was going on, especially after there was a massive toad migration at Mianzhu three days before the quake – a traditional precursor of one – it had the Misty satellite activate its plasma envelope, causing the second kind of rainbow clouds, which made it invisible to Chinese radar, and permitted the beaming to continue during the daytime.

For more on the two types of cloud, etc., see this link: Earthquake cloud, Chinese photographer catch prediction 2 days before earthquake occurred

On May 12th, the devastating earthquake happened, burying everything in the area in rubble except for those places which had a firm rock foundation. Beichuan city, thanks to a rippled effect it received from the epicenter, was simply buried in rubble – what no kind of earthquake protection building would have prevented – and the Chinese government has simply left untouched as a memorial to the dead.

The underground nuclear assembly plant, and nuclear weapons storage sites high in the mountains received the same fate.

The testing site at Dashita was so severely damaged that its nuclear reactor apparently exploded during the earthquake, but was completely covered in the ensuing rubble as if the Chinese themselves had programmed its destruction as if it were simply a test.

For a picture of the devastation, see this link: Earthquake in Sichuan Province

It was the best example yet of what Naomi Klein had called “so-called Acts of God or by Acts of Bush (on orders from God),” and it is most interesting to see how the world, especially Ms. Klein, reacted to what had been wrought, as we shall see.

Posted in USAComments Off on Why Did Pentagon Completely Confuse China?

America; From Nation Building To Nation Destruction.


by Sami Jamil Jadallah


When I was growing up in Palestine, I remember the first picture I ever took with my family, and it was a picture in clothes we got from a Cooperative for Assistance and Relief Everywhere (CARE) package. In those days, America’s gift to the Arabs was the CARE Package. Now, America’s gifts to the Arabs are the cluster and phosphorous bombs sent directly from the American government to the Arab people.

Major Crandall’s UH-1D helicopter climbs skyward after discharging a load of infantrymen on a search and destroy mission – Source: Wikimedia Commons

If we look at America’s policy in the Middle East both past and present, we can see it is driven by ideological, political and military commitments to an ever-expanding Zionist Israel, always against America’s interests and always against America’s claimed ideals and principals.

In the days after WWII, America’s leadership by the likes of General George Marshall and Dean Acheson was committed to nation building after the near total destruction of Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan.

The Marshall Plan with logistical, financial and administrative commitment to rebuilding West Europe and Japan is something that causes us to admire American spirit. However, it also causes us to wonder what went wrong in America’s foreign policy.

In the name of fighting Communism, the United States engaged itself directly or through proxies through many armed conflicts around world in support of kleptocracies in the Far East, in the Middle East, in Latin and South America, in Africa, and even in Communist East Europe such as what we saw with Romania’s Nicolae Ceausescu.

In the Far East, of course Vietnam always comes to mind when Lyndon Johnson the president of the United States lied (see Gulf of Tonkin incident) his way to Congress and America was engaged in full scale war that killed and murdered more than one million Vietnamese and killed and murdered more than 55,000 American servicemen, and completely destroyed the infrastructures in Vietnam.

The Vietnam War was not limited to Vietnam—it was none other than the war criminal Henry Kissinger who decided to expand into Cambodia (incursion) and to Laos.

America also committed itself to supporting ruthless military dictatorships in both the Philippines and Indonesia, supporting klepto criminal regimes that laid waste to these two nations sowing the seed of revolutions that drove America’s allies Ferdinand Marcos and General Suhartoout of the country and out of office

In Iran, the story of re-installing the late and former Shah of Iran at a price of $100,000 is something always remembered and taught within the corridors of the State Department and the CIA. $100,000 did wonders by removing a freely elected Prime Minister Dr. Mohammad Mosaddeq. Together with his close circle of friends, the late Shah of Iran not only looted the country, but engaged in the most cruel abuses of civil and human rights in partnership with the SAVAK and the Mossad. The demise of the Shah and subsequent rise of the Islamic Republic of Iran was but a result of the reckless criminal policies of the United States and its partner in crime the late Shah.

An Iraqi woman looks on as U.S. Army Soldiers from 1st Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment, 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team search the courtyard of her house during a cordon and search in Ameriyah, Iraq – Source: Wikimedia Commons

Not too far from Iran, the United States also engaged in giving full unconditional support to Saddam Hussein as he ruthlessly took over the government of Iraq and carried out his brutal war against the people of Iraq.

The United States also gave Saddam the support he needed to engage in his 8 year war against post-Shah Iran. That war cost both Iraq and Iran more than two million lives, the destruction of their economies and infrastructures, and the fleecing of Gulf countries treasuries to the tune of $150 Billion.

Few years later and no sooner than the blood of the Iraq-Iran was dried, Saddam was at it again, this time with a tacit “wink” from the United States.

Saddam’s invasion of Kuwait brought about the destruction of both Iraq and Kuwait not to mention the hundreds of thousands who died during the conflict and the millions Iraqis, mostly elderly and children, who died as a result of the boycott. Once again, the Arab Gulf countries ended paying the bill to the tune of $700 Billion.

On the Iranian borders, the United States also decided to go to war against Afghanistan in retaliation for the September 11th attack on the Twin Towers in New York. Again, not so sure who is the beneficiary of such war—certainly not the United States and certainly not Afghanistan.

Meanwhile, the United States was now not too happy with the behavior of its former buddy and ally Saddam, and decided to take advantage of the tragedy of 9/11, and invade Iraq under the pre-text that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction, a lie perpetuated by George Bush and his Zionist Neocons, think tanks, and the main stream media. The War on Iraq was an Israeli war, not an American war.

Map of Israeli bombings of Lebanon – Source: Wikimedia Commons

More than 100,000 dead, more than 4 million displaced and now refugees both in and outside of Iraq. The United States left Iraq in ruins; a nation ruled by ruthless sectarian leadership, a nation divided along ethnic and sectarian lines with thieves, thugs and crooks as government leaders. Of course the cost to America was close to a trillion dollars with a crippled economy, thousands killed and tens of thousands left with permanent injuries. Now the same group of American Zionists who took the nation to war in Iraq wants the United States to go to war against Iran.

In the Middle East, the United States has consistently supported dictatorships that looted and ruined the countries including Egypt, Tunisia, Algeria, Libya, Yemen, Sudan and Palestinian Occupied Territories. In the case of Syria, price was silence along Israel’s borders.

We must not forget the many wars Israel engaged in against the Palestinians and against all of its neighbors near and far with the help of the United States. Thanks to unconditional financial, military and political support from the United States, Israel waged wars in ‘48, ‘56, ‘67, ‘81, ‘82 and more recently in 2006 against Lebanon with the support of the United States that rushed one million cluster bombs to Israel to drop on civilian targets in Lebanon, resulting in the destruction of housing projects, bridges, power stations, telecommunications centers, airports and marine facilities.

The Samouni Family in Gaza – Source: International Solidarity Movement

No less criminal than the War on Lebanon was The War on Gaza, when in December 2009; Israel commenced its Operation Cast Lead against the people of Gaza, attacking schools, hospitals, clinics, housing projects, and farms. George Bush, Dick Cheney, Condi Rice, were cheerleaders. Everyone in Gaza, militant or civilian was an equal opportunity target and victim for Israel and its US-supplied phosphorous bombs.

The story is no different in Central and Latin America where the United States supported ruthless dictatorships in Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, and Panama. The United States gave full support to military dictatorships in Guatemala, El Salvador, and insurgent groups in Nicaragua. More than 500,000 people were killed and murdered in these wars, compliments of the United States.

Africa was no different with the United States always on the side of dictatorships and Apartheid in Zaire and South Africa, supporting a number of petty little dictatorships in the Central African Republic, in Liberia, one among many.

Too bad for America, too bad for the world, too bad for human dignity and mankind that the greatest “democracy” in the world turned from a country committed to building nations to a country committed to destruction on a global scale.

Skewed political ideology driven by anti-Communism, Evangelical Christianity and Zionism, liberal ruthless capitalism, are the driving force behind America’s wars against the world and against itself.

Posted in ZIO-NAZIComments Off on America; From Nation Building To Nation Destruction.

Lucid Derangement



by David Swanson


One would think that if condemned to lose sanity it would be preferable not to be aware of what was happening.  On the contrary, as in lucid dreaming, there is something empowering and even comforting in lucid derangement, particularly national as opposed to personal derangement.

We may be in the advanced stages of going loony as a society and a polity, and yet expanding one’s awareness of how this process is proceeding is a form of enlightenment, even if the enlightenment is offered with some defeatist shading.

“The United States of Fear” is a collection of Tom Engelhardt’s writings from his TomDispatch blog.  It turns our world inside out any number of times, allowing us to glimpse with startling clarity the horrifying world outside our cave without ever quite persuading us that the real world can be real if it isn’t on television, and not infrequently building into the presentation the understanding that there is no cure for what ails us.

Here’s an example.  According to Engelhardt we dwell in a “Postlegal America”:

“Is the Libyan war legal?  Was Osama bin Laden’s killing legal?  Is it legal for the president of the United States to target an American citizen for assassination? Were those ‘enhanced interrogation techniques’ legal? . . .  [Such questions] are irrelevant.  Think of them as twentieth century questions that don’t begin to come to grips with twenty-first-century American realities.  In fact, I think of them, and the very idea of a nation based on the rule of law, as symptoms of nostalgia for a long-lost republic.”

This formulation crystallizes our understanding that we are not dealing here with something in the way of the peaks of corruption seen in past cycles.  There is something new and different about an age in which our leading criminals go on book tours while people scream for the blood of our leading whistleblowers, an age in which blanket immunity shields those guilty of the largest crimes from either prosecution or public identification, an age in which Ed Meese’s contention (that anyone among the peasants who is accused of a minor crime is by definition guilty) walks hand-in-hand with Richard Nixon’s explanation (that if a president does it then it is not a crime).  But Engelhardt’s formulation simultaneously belittles and discourages efforts to undo this development.  Who wants to be irrelevant, to fail to come to grips with the proper century, to suffer from nostalgia?  Well, I do, of course.  I want to join Martin King’s International Association for the Advancement of Creative Maladjustment.  I don’t want to adjust to Postlegal Land.

In addition, according to Engelhardt, we have entered the Soviet Era in America:

“It gives you chills to run across Communist Party general secretary Mikhail Gorbachev at a Politburo meeting in October 1985, almost six years after Soviet troops first flooded into Afghanistan, reading letters aloud to his colleagues from embittered Soviet citizens. . . .  Or, in November 1986, insisting to those same colleagues that the Afghan War must be ended in a year, ‘at maximum, two.’ . . . Or what about Marshal Sergei Akhromeyev . . .  ‘There is no single piece of land in this country that has not been occupied by a Soviet soldier.  Nevertheless, the majority of the territory remains in the hands of the rebels.’”

Not only has the United States transformed itself into the Soviet Union as the new occupier of Afghanistan whistling past the imperial graveyard, but we have accomplished this in the most Hopeful manner without really changing anything other than creating a collective fantasy called Change:

“In the midst of the Great Recession, under a new president with supposedly far fewer illusions about American omnipotence and power, war policy continued to expand in just about every way.”

Engelhardt’s book takes us through the dark Bush-Cheney era and on through the sunkissed dawn of Obama’s codification and entrenchment of Bush-Cheney crimes as the new normalcy.  Engelhardt starts with the Cheney-run empowerment of the members of the Project for the New American Century:

“This may, in fact, be the first example in history of a think tank coming to power and actually putting its blue-sky suggestions into operation as government policy, or perhaps it’s the only example so far of a government in waiting masquerading as a think tank.”

The agenda of that think tank is still the agenda of the White House and Pentagon.  What has changed?  In Engelhardt’s telling, we’ve gone from a government of fanatical pro-war visionaries to one with no vision at all, just momentum.  Oh, and, as Engelhardt points out, the U.S. corporate media has stopped seriously covering the deaths of U.S. men and women in war.  That’s a change.  And the world’s biggest ever embassy in Iraq from the Bush era is now being duplicated in Pakistan — with Hopey Changey drapes no doubt.

Another change that Engelhardt draws out and focuses our eyes and ears on is what might be called the logorrhea of the lieutenants.  “There’s a history still to be written,” writes Engelhardt as he publishes the first draft, “about how our highest military commanders came to never shut up.”  Military propaganda targeting our own people is a daily diet now.  And while the generals are talking, our economy is imploding, our infrastructure crumbling.  We know this is happening, but we don’t usually contemplate the scale of it or push to do something about it.  We’re too fascinated by all the medals on the generals’ uniforms.  And we’re not the only ones.  “I have no greater job,” Engelhardt quotes Obama saying, “nothing gives me more honor than serving as your commander in chief.”  Engelhardt comments in typical fashion:

“As ever, all of this was overlooked.  Nowhere did a single commentator wonder, for instance, whether an American president was really supposed to feel that being commander in chief offered greater ‘honor’ than being president of a nation of citizens. In another age, such a statement would have registered as, at best, bizarre.”

Like the Italian cruise ship captain who accidentally “tripped” and fell into a lifeboat and abandoned his floating city to its fate, the power madness Engelhardt depicts is framed in his book as the flailings of a beast in decline:

“The proximate cause of Washington’s defeat is a collapse of its imperial position in a region that, ever since President Jimmy Carter proclaimed his Carter Doctrine in 1980, has been considered the crucible of global power. Today, ‘people power’ has shaken the pillars of the American position in the Middle East, while — despite the staggering levels of military might the Pentagon still has embedded in the area — the Obama administration has found itself standing helplessly and in grim confusion.”

Now Engelhardt comes around to the possibility that indeed something can be done, at least by foreigners: “Never in memory,” Engelhardt writes in the excitement of last year’s Arab Spring, “have so many unjust or simply despicable rulers felt quite so helpless, despite being armed to the teeth — in the presence of unarmed humanity.  There has to be joy and hope in that alone.”

If “The United States of Fear” helps the United States set aside the fear, there is no limit to what unarmed humanity can do, even here, even acting on its nostalgia for the never-quite-existent age of equality before the law.

Posted in USAComments Off on Lucid Derangement

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