By Paul Craig Roberts
February 04, 2009
According to US government propaganda, terrorist cells are spread throughout America, making it necessary for the government to spy on all Americans and violate most other constitutional protections. Among President Bush’s last words as he left office was the warning that America would soon be struck again by Muslim terrorists.
If America were infected with terrorists, we would not need the government to tell us. We would know it from events. As there are no events, the US government substitutes warnings in order to keep alive the fear that causes the public to accept pointless wars, the infringement of civil liberty, national ID cards, and inconveniences and harrassments when they fly.
The most obvious indication that there are no terrorist cells is that not a single neocon has been assassinated.
I do not approve of assassinations, and am ashamed of my country’s government for engaging in political assassination. The US and Israel have set a very bad example for al Qaeda to follow.
The US deals with al Qaeda and Taliban by assassinating their leaders, and Israel deals with Hamas by assassinating its leaders. It is reasonable to assume that al Qaeda would deal with the instigators and leaders of America’s wars in the Middle East in the same way.
Today every al Qaeda member is aware of the complicity of neoconservatives in the death and devastation inflicted on Muslims in Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon and Gaza. Moreover, neocons are highly visible… Continue reading
In a companion essay (reprinted below), I discussed the response of some articles in the mainstream press to the claim, made by some defenders of Israel, that Professor Richard Falk should be removed from his current position of UN rapporteur on human rights abuses in the Palestinian Territories — a claim that was reflected in the refusal of Israel on December 14, 2008, to allow him to enter the country. I included in this essay a discussion of an article by reporter Joel Brinkley because, although it was published before Israel’s action against Falk 1 , it could be read as a defense of that action. Brinkley, who had previously worked for the New York Times , argued that Falk did not have the right “frame of mind” for his UN position. In the present essay, I will focus on Brinkley’s argument for this charge, suggesting that it shows that he does not have the right frame of mind for his own current position as visiting professor of journalism at Stanford University.
Brinkley’s Discussion of 9/11
Brinkley’s charge that Falk is unfit for his UN role is quite remarkable, given Falk’s stature. He is Professor Emeritus of International Law and Practice at Princeton University and currently Distinguished Visiting Professor at the University of California at Santa Barbara. He has had published (as author or editor) over 60 books by academic and other mainstream presses. He is also widely respected and sought after as a speaker and conference participant.… Continue reading
By Paul Craig Roberts
December 05, 2008
The US government
does not have a monopoly on hypocrisy, but no other government can match the
hypocrisy of the US government.
It is now well documented and known all over the world that the US government
tortured detainees at Abu Ghraib and Guantánamo and that the US government has
had people kidnaped and “rendentioned,” that is, transported to
third world countries, such as Egypt, to be tortured.
Also documented and well known is the fact that the US Department of Justice
provided written memos justifying the torture of detainees. One torture advocate
who wrote the DOJ memos that gave the green light to the Bush regime’s
use of torture is John Yoo, a Vietnamese immigrant who somehow secured a US
Justice Department appointment and a tenured professorship at the University
of California, Berkeley, Boalt Hall School of Law. John Yoo is the best case
against immigration that I know.
Members of Berkeley’s city council believe that Yoo should be charged
with war crimes. The US government has charged lesser offenders than Yoo with
war crimes. Yoo helped the DOJ achieve the Bush regime’s goal of finding
a way around the torture prohibitions of both US statutory law and the Geneva
The way around the law that Yoo provided for the sadistic Bush regime was closed
down by the US Supreme Court, which voided Yoo’s arguments, and Yoo’s
torture memo was rescinded by the Department of Justice. Nevertheless, Yoo’s
obvious… Continue reading
By Jeremy Scahill
November 20, 2008
Click here to view this guide as a single page.
U.S. policy is not about one individual, and no matter how much faith people place in President-elect Barack Obama, the policies he enacts will be fruit of a tree with many roots. Among them: his personal politics and views, the disastrous realities his administration will inherit, and, of course, unpredictable future crises. But the best immediate indicator of what an Obama administration might look like can be found in the people he surrounds himself with and who he appoints to his Cabinet. And, frankly, when it comes to foreign policy, it is not looking good.
Obama has a momentous opportunity to do what he repeatedly promised over the course of his campaign: bring actual change. But the more we learn about who Obama is considering for top positions in his administration, the more his inner circle resembles a staff reunion of President Bill Clinton’s White House. Although Obama brought some progressives on board early in his campaign, his foreign policy team is now dominated by the hawkish, old-guard Democrats of the 1990s. This has been particularly true since Hillary Clinton conceded defeat in the Democratic primary, freeing many of her top advisors to join Obama’s team.
"What happened to all this talk about change?" a member of the Clinton foreign policy team recently asked the Washington Post. "This isn’t lightly flavored with Clintons. This is all Clintons, all the time."
Amid the… Continue reading
© Diana Ralph, Ph.D.Abstract
The 9-11 attacks were the pretext which sold the myth of evil Muslim terrorists imminently threatening Americans. That tale allowed the Cheney-led members of the Project for the New American Century (PNAC) to implement their 1990 DPG plan for world control. The “war on terror” has nothing to do with protecting the U.S. and world’s people from “terrorists”, and everything to do with securing the American empire abroad and muzzling democracy and human rights at home. Designed to inspire popular support for U.S. wars of world conquest, it is modeled on Islamophobic stereotypes, policies, and political structures developed by the Israeli Likkud and Bush Sr. since 1979. To defeat this plan, we must overcome our Islamophobic fear of “terrorists” and stand in solidarity with Muslims.
1. Why a 9-11 Pretext?
By Bernard Weiner
Co-Editor, The Crisis Papers
Each year around the anniversary of 9/11, I summarize what we ordinary citizens have learned since that awful day in 2001. This is the seventh annual look backwards, a 2008 update that contains new information and surmisings about those horrific events and what followed.
1. One 9/11 Size Fits All. What we now more fully understand is how the CheneyBush Administration utilized the murderous terrorism of 9/11 as the linchpin justification for their unfolding domestic and foreign agenda, much of it illegal, immoral and impeachable.
By and large, one can sum up that overall agenda as: Amass and control power in the U.S. and much of the world (“full-spectrum dominance”), and, in cahoots with their corporate supporters such as Halliburton and Blackwater, loot the federal treasury. All this was to be carried out secretly, with no accountability.
2. Iraq War Planning Began Before 9/11. We also know more about the nature of the lies (including forged documents) used by the Administration to sell the Iraq War, which attack already was in the planning stages well before 9/11.
The first faked document, by CIA forgers at the behest of White House officials, was a 2005 letter (back-dated 2001) supposedly coming from the then-Iraqi intelligence chief to his boss Saddam Hussein mentioning alleged “facts” that established a tie-in between 9/11, Al-Qaida and Iraq and about Saddam’s supposed purchase of uranium. The official, Tahir Jalil Habbush al-Tikriti, who had been an informant for the U.S. during… Continue reading
by Jason Leopold
August 21, 2008
House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers has asked current and former White
House aides and ex-CIA officials to respond to questions about an alleged scheme
to create a bogus letter in late 2003 linking Saddam Hussein to al-Qaeda.
In sending the interview requests Wednesday, Conyers is following up on a disputed story in journalist Ron Suskind’s new book, The Way of the World: A Story of Truth and Hope in an Age of Extremism, which includes an account of how the mysterious letter originated.
The book cites statements from former CIA associate deputy director of operations Rob Richer and John Maguire, the former chief of the CIA’s Iraq Operations Group/Near East Division, as indicating that the White House ordered the CIA to produce the bogus letter to retroactively justify the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in March 2003.
Richer and Maguire gave Suskind on-the-record interviews, which the author recorded, discussing the reasons the letter was created and saying that it likely emanated from Vice President Dick Cheney’s office. Both men have since recanted their statements.
Conyers, who has held periodic hearings on abuses of power by George W. Bush’s administration, sent letters to former CIA Director George Tenet; the CIA’s former executive director A.B. “Buzzy” Krongard; Cheney’s former chief of staff I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby; and John Hannah, another Cheney assistant — as well as to Richer and Maguire.
“I am writing to follow up on recent serious allegations regarding the creation of a… Continue reading
By Kathy Sanborn
13/08/08 “ICH” — – Sanborn: When I read your article, “Marching
Off Into Tyranny,” I was impressed by how you were able to concisely sum
up one of the most important issues that we face as Americans, namely, the erosion
of our civil liberties, mostly due to fabricated terrorism such as the anthrax
scare and the attacks on 9/11. You talk about the Florida university professor,
Al-Arian, who continues to be victimized by the Feds although a jury has cleared
him of any terrorism charges. [As of August 8, 2008, the Associated Press states,
"U.S. District Judge Leonie Brinkema postponed the trial indefinitely,
questioning whether the government was overeager in filing charges." –KS]
What was your wake-up call, Dr. Roberts, to the fact that the current administration
was determined to take away the civil liberties of Americans?
Roberts: When they responded to 9/11 with the Patriot Act. That document was
thick, and it would have taken months and months to prepare it, yet it came
out shortly after the 9/11 attacks.
Why does combating terrorism require an assault on the Constitution and the
Bill of Rights? It was clear to me that there was an undeclared agenda there.
On the day of 9/11, I knew right away that something was wrong. I had been
an engineering student at Georgia Tech, and things just didn’t add up.
As I watched the towers fall, I could see that the buildings were blowing up
from the top, at least initially.… Continue reading
By Mike Allen
August 5, 2008
A new book by the author Ron Suskind claims that the White House ordered the CIA to forge a back-dated, handwritten letter from the head of Iraqi intelligence to Saddam Hussein.
Suskind writes in “The Way of the World,” to be published Tuesday, that the alleged forgery — adamantly denied by the White House — was designed to portray a false link between Hussein’s regime and al Qaeda as a justification for the Iraq war.
The author also claims that the Bush administration had information from a top Iraqi intelligence official “that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq — intelligence they received in plenty of time to stop an invasion.”
The letter’s existence has been reported before, and it had been written about as if it were genuine. It was passed in Baghdad to a reporter for The (London) Sunday Telegraph who wrote about it on the front page of Dec. 14, 2003, under the headline, “Terrorist behind September 11 strike ‘was trained by Saddam.’”
The Telegraph story by Con Coughlin (which, coincidentally, ran the day Hussein was captured in his “spider hole”) was touted in the U.S. media by supporters of the war, and he was interviewed on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
“Over the next few days, the Habbush letter continued to be featured prominently in the United States and across the globe,” Suskind writes. “Fox’s Bill O’Reilly trumpeted the story Sunday night on ‘The O’Reilly Factor,’ talking breathlessly about details of the story and exhorting, ‘Now, if this is true, that blows the lid off al Qaeda–Saddam.’”
According to Suskind, the administration had been in contact with the director of the Iraqi intelligence service in the last years of Hussein’s regime, Tahir Jalil Habbush al-Tikriti.…Continue reading
By Paul Craig Roberts
August 5, 2008
In last weekend’s edition of CounterPunch,
Alexander Cockburn updates the ongoing persecution of Sami Al-Arian by federal
prosecutors. Al-Arian was a Florida university professor of computer science
who was ensnared by the Bush Regime’s need to produce “terrorists”
in order to keep Americans fearful and, thereby, amenable to the Bush Regime’s
assault on US civil liberties.
The charges against Al-Arian were rejected by a jury, but the Bush Regime could
not accept the obvious defeat. If Al-Arian was not a terrorist, then other of
the Bush Regime’s fabricated cases might fall apart, too.
In open view, the US Department of Justice (sic) proceeded to trash every known
ethical rule of prosecution. I don’t need to repeat the facts, as they
are covered by Cockburn’s articles and in The Tyranny of Good Intentions.
Instead, I want to point out another meaning of the Al-Arian case. The Justice
(sic) Department itself knows that it is persecuting a totally innocent person
for reasons of a political agenda–the need to convince gullible Americans of
an ongoing terrorist threat. The existence of this threat is used to justify
the Bush Regime’s adoption of police state measures, such as spying on
Americans without warrants, arresting them without charges, and refusing to
let go of them when they are cleared by juries.
Sami Al-Arian is a fabricated terrorist created by federal prosecutors and
judges in behalf of an undeclared agenda. The Al-Arian case proves that terrorists
are in short… Continue reading
Wide-ranging conspiracies do take place, whether you or I, or Charlie Brooker,
are inclined to believe it or not
July 17, 2008
Guardian “Comment is Free”
Earlier this week Charlie Brooker generated the largest number of online responses
to an article in the history of Comment is free. His theme was conspiracy theory
in general and the 9/11 conspiracy theories in particular — and it collected
more than 1,700 comments. Brooker thinks conspiracy theories console those who
find reality too dull and complicated without the garnish of a hidden agenda:
“Embrace a conspiracy theory and suddenly you’re part of a gang sharing
privileged information; your sense of power and dignity rises a smidgeon and
this troublesome world makes more sense, for a time.”
Brooker’s line belongs to a mini-genre of attempts to explain the public’s
willingness to entertain conspiracy theories in psychological terms. Indeed
he is very close to that stern rationalist Melanie Phillips, who has decided
that, in the absence of religion, conspiracy theories satisfy “our desperate
need to make order out of chaos”.
The conspiratorial world view does have its consolations. But so does Brooker’s.
There’s a certain pleasure and drama in declaring that the world is driven by
incompetence and error, and that things are more or less as they seem. You can
preen yourself on how well-adjusted you are, how you haven’t fallen for that
stuff about lizards, or Illuminati. You have learned to live without magic.
You’re saying “I don’t believe in… Continue reading
Impeachment Article to be Introduced Thursday
WASHINGTON, D.C. (July 8) — Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) sent the following
letter today to his colleagues in Congress:
July 8, 2008
WHEN THE COMMANDER IN CHIEF LIES TO GO TO WAR, HE MUST
A SINGLE ARTICLE OF IMPEACHMENT WILL BE BROUGHT TO THE FLOOR
ON THURSDAY; PLEASE CO-SPONSOR
During the Fourth of July holiday a WWII veteran stood ram-rod straight in
his crisp dress uniform and saluted our flag as it passed in a parade. His silent
reverential stance was a powerful reminder of the love of country that is reflected
in our veterans of all generations and all services.
It is also a powerful reminder of the responsibilities of the President of
the Untied States in his capacity as Commander in Chief.
It is worse than heartbreaking that George W. Bush, as Commander in Chief,
caused this country to go to war based on information which was false, and which
he knew to be false. The consequences for our troops have been devastating.
We have lost 4,116 of our beloved servicemen and women since the war began,
with over 30,000 physically wounded and countless others emotionally wounded.
The toll on the service persons and their families will be felt throughout their
There can be no greater responsibility of a Commander in Chief than to command
based on facts on the ground, and to command in fact and in truth. There can
be no greater offense of a Commander in Chief than to misrepresent a cause of
war and to send our brave men and women into harm’s way based on those misrepresentations.…
by David Edwards and Nick
Juliano, Raw Story
June 20, 2008
Former White House spokesman Scott McClellan is testifying to the House Judiciary
Committee about his new revelations on the exposure of CIA agent Valerie Plame
and the Bush administration’s “propaganda campaign” that led the country
McClellan was invited to testify after publication of his tell all memoir,
What Happened: Inside the Bush White House and Washington’s Culture of Deception.
Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers said the revelations McClellan wrote
about “may or may not constitute an impeachable offense.”
The revelation of a pre-war propaganda campaign was “a confirmation that
the White House played fast and loose with the truth in a time of war,”
Conyers said to open the hearing. “Depending on how one reads the Constitution,
that may or may not be an impeachable offense.”
Conyers, a Michigan Democrat, said Plame’s outing was a direct component of
that propaganda effort because it was aimed at discrediting her husband Joe
Wilson, a former ambassador who undercut the administration’s argument that
Saddam Hussein was attempting to buy nuclear weapons materials from Africa.
Friday’s hearing, he said, was aimed at uncovering possible evidence of obstruction
of justice and painting a fuller picture of administration officials involvement
“not only in the leak but also in the coverup.”
Rep. Lamar Smith, the top Republican on the Judiciary Committee, gave a prebuttal
of McClellan’s testimony, reciting accusations that McClellan was simply trying
to make a buck with a critical book and that he was perhaps trying to get back
at his former bosses.…
Iceland tops list of peaceful nations, U.S. 97th
Tue May 20, 2008 5:08pm EDT
By Sue Pleming
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Iceland is the world’s most peaceful nation while the United States is ranked among the bottom third, according to a study released on Tuesday.
The “Global Peace Index,” compiled by the Economist Intelligence Unit, ranked the United States 97th out of 140 countries according to how peaceful they were domestically and how they interacted with the outside world.
The United States slipped from 96th last year, but was still ahead of foe Iran which ranked 105th. It, however, lagged Belarus, Cuba, South Korea, Chile, Libya and others which were listed as more peaceful.
Iraq, which the United States invaded in 2003, leading to the toppling of Saddam Hussein, ranked lowest on the index. Afghanistan, another country invaded by the United States this decade, was also in the bottom five, along with Sudan, Somalia and Israel.
Commenting on the U.S. ranking, State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said to realize a more peaceful and prosperous world, “Often times, you have to do difficult things and a lot of times, people don’t agree with them. They don’t like them.”
“A lot of times you fall down in these lists but at the end of the day it is in defense of democracy and the way of life we have enjoyed over the past several decades,” he added.
The United States has come under strong international criticism for the invasion of Iraq and… Continue reading
March 31, 2008
By Paul Craig Roberts
The US Congress, the US media, the American people, and the United Nations,
are looking the other way as Cheney prepares his attack on Iran.
If only America had an independent media and an opposition party. If there
were a shred of integrity left in American political life, perhaps a third act
of naked aggression–a third war crime under the Nuremberg standard–by the
Bush Regime could be prevented.
On March 30, the Russian News & Information Agency, Novosti, cited “a
high-ranking security source: “The latest military intelligence data point
to heightened US military preparations for both an air and ground operation
According to Novosti, Russian Colonel General Leonid Ivashov said “that
the Pentagon is planning to deliver a massive air strike on Iran’s military
infrastructure in the near future.”
The chief of Russia’s general staff, Yuri Baluyevsky, said last November that
Russia was beefing up its military in response to US aggression, but that the
Russian military is not “obliged to defend the world from the evil Americans.”
On March 29, OpEdNews cited a report by the Saudi Arabian newspaper Okaz, which
was picked up by the German news service, DPA. The Saudi newspaper reported
on March 22, the day following Cheney’s visit with the kingdom’s rulers, that
the Saudi Shura Council is preparing “national plans to deal with any sudden
nuclear and radioactive hazards that may affect the kingdom following experts’
warnings of possible attacks on Iran’s Bushehr nuclear reactors.”… Continue reading
By Jerry Meldon
Hamilton’s carefully honed skill for balancing truth against political comity has elevated him to the status of a Washington Wise Man. In this guest essay, however, Jerry Meldon suggests that attendees at a Tufts conference on the Middle East might want to ask Hamilton about his past compromises with history.
(Plus, at the end of the essay, you may want to read an addendum from reporter Robert Parry on two questions that might be posed to Hamilton about decisions he made in wrapping up the so-called “October Surprise” case):
When former Rep. Lee Hamilton gives the keynote address – entitled “Iraq: Today, Tomorrow, and Beyond” – at a Tufts University symposium on March 27, he may be thankful if he doesn’t have to discuss “yesterday.”
He probably would prefer not to revisit fateful decisions he made while chairing investigations into Republican dirty work, especially those that let George H.W. Bush off the hook and cleared George W. Bush’s path to the White House.
Whenever the Republicans have a touchy national-security scandal to put to rest, their favorite Democratic investigator is Lee Hamilton. Over the years, Hamilton has developed a reputation as a very reasonable fellow who knows how far he can go without ruffling too many important feathers.
As veteran journalist Robert Parry has persuasively argued at Consortiumnews.com, the Bush family name squeaked through the 80’s and early 90’s essentially mud-free, only because:
–On Christmas Eve 1992, lame-duck President George H.W.… Continue reading
AN APPEAL TO CONSCIENCE
In Support of Those Refusing to Pay for War
“Let them march all they want, as long as they continue to pay their taxes.”
–Gen. Alexander Haig, U.S. Secretary of State, June 12, 1982
“If a thousand [people] were not to pay their tax bills this year, that would not be a violent and bloody measure, as it would be to pay them and enable the state to commit violence and shed innocent blood.”
–Henry David Thoreau, during Mexican-American War of 1846-48
To all people of goodwill everywhere:
We stand in profound opposition to our government”s aerial bombardment, military invasion, and armed occupation of Iraq, which we consider morally reprehensible and an outrage against conscience and humanity. The reasons for our opposition, in brief, include the following:
This series of military actions has cost the lives of thousands of Iraqi soldiers and hundreds of American soldiers, and it has resulted in even greater numbers of people left injured, orphaned, and widowed. It has further devastated Iraq”s already crippled infrastructure, which was destroyed by U.S. aerial bombardment in 1991, further depriving countless Iraqi children as well as adults of adequate electricity, clean water, sewage treatment, and medical facilities. It has increased the likelihood of terrorist attacks against the U.S., its citizens, and those of our military allies. It has caused untold damage to the environment and human health, including that of American soldiers, as a result of the depleted uranium used… Continue reading
A local 9/11 truth organization founded by two Monadnock Region college students is gaining worldwide attention.
And the New Hampshire primary played a leading role in the accomplishments of Student Scholars for 9/11 Truth.
“We were able to get almost every presidential candidate on video describing their stances on the 9/11 Commission investigation,” said co-founder Justin A. Martell, a junior at Franklin Pierce University.
Martell and Keene State College junior Michael E. Jackman launched the organization in 2006.
The off-the-cuff video interviews with presidential hopefuls were posted on the Internet, and some have been viewed by more than 30,000 people worldwide, according to Martell.
“It’s gotten a lot of people motivated,” he said.
Martell is quick to stress that the student organization, with 80 members from schools in Canada to Japan, is more focused on the investigation into 9/11 than the possibility of controlled demolition.
“The Monadnock 9/11 Truth Alliance is quick to pull out the controlled demolition of the Twin Towers,” he said. “We’re not the controlled demolition movement, we’re the 9/11 truth movement. … There needs to be a new investigation into 9/11.”
After the attacks, Martell said he “rallied around” President Bush.
“And then evidence started to mount. There were no weapons of mass destruction and no ties between Saddam Hussein and al-Qaida,” he said. “That’s when I realized the Bush administration was, at the very least, a bunch of liars.”
In the past two years, Jackman and other members of the… Continue reading