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Video: Sanders Slams Clinton’s Admiration for “Destructive” Former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger
Much of what ails society today is the proliferation of sociopaths. I’m not just talking about hardened criminals either; sociopaths are everywhere, in all walks of life. In fact, the traits they possess are the very traits which impel one to succeed and rise to positions of power in a capitalistic society. CEOs, Wall Street billionaires, politicians, military chiefs, intelligence operatives, and right-wing talking heads are among those who have used their sociopathological personality disorders to rule America.
Wouldn’t it be nice if we could identify a sociopath before he/she comes to power? Think of how much better our lives and our country would be if only we knew who the conscienceless bastards really were before we voted for them, came under their employ, listened to their cons, fell prey to their manipulation. The problem is, they are not easily identified because they wear masks. They try to fit in by mimicking normal behavior in public. Some are even charming. They seduce us with their outward appearance of normalcy, but inside they are godless devils bent on perverting the greater good for their own means.
In the past 35 years America has slowly been transformed from a nation of common purpose to a nation of the rich, by wealthy, and for the sociopathic few. That’s because many of the people in power (mostly Republicans) have been crass opportunists concerned with self- advancement at the expense of the greater good. In the age of Reagan, the self-centeredness was heightened to a virtue. The 1980s gave rise to a rogue’s gallery of Gordon Gekkos and their “greed is good” philosophy. It wasn’t just Reagan and his policies though, it was the sociopaths he ushered into public service—the Bushes, Donald Rumsfeld, Dick Cheney, Oliver North, William Casey and a whole band of despicable criminals. The country became more selfish, less communal, and more cynical. It was then that we started letting the Almighty buck rule all facets of American life. The more money you had, the more admired you were. Fuck generosity and compassion for the less fortunate.
Since then, sociopaths have started illicit wars, drained the national treasury, raped Mother Nature, ruined the climate, and given rise to Rush Limbaugh, FOX News, Newt Gingrich, Paul Ryan, Ted Cruz, et al. There seem to be more sociopaths than human beings in positions of power. Maybe that was the whole point. Now the Extreme Court (uh..er…Supreme Court) has gotten in on the act, by making it easier for sociopathic billionaires to control (read subvert) the democratic process. Smarmy Vegas casino operators (like Shel Adelson) and fascist industrialists (like the Koch brothers) have far more say in how our government operates than 99% of us.
As a public service then, I am herewith giving you tips on how to spot a sociopath. If you recognize them in someone, alert authorities and resist the urge to succumb to their wiles.
Traits of a Sociopath (based on the work of psychologists Robert Hare): While some experts believe that sociopathy has a genetic origin, Hare believed that a sociopath’s behavior “is shaped by social forces and is the result of a dysfunctional environment.” Hare formed a list of traits common to sociopaths. Here are the most prevalent:
--Sociopaths are manipulative and very skilled at taking advantage of the good intentions of others . Allen Dulles, former CIA chief, is a good example. He was appointed by President Eisenhower in 1953 after promising Ike that the CIA could avoid WWIII by overthrowing socialist and communist countries around the globe via bloodless coups. Eisenhower, a decent man shaken by the horrors of the second World War, turned over foreign policy to Allen and his brother Foster. The Dulles brothers, sociopaths of the worst kind, turned America into quasi-fascist Orwellian state by using their enormous power to control the media, murder innocent citizens, evoke hatred of America around the globe, and cover up the assassination of JFK. All the while, the Dulleses were enriching themselves and their corporate partners—the Forbeses, the Browns, the Rockefellers, the DuPonts, the Hunts—the oldest, richest families in the country. And Kennedy haters all.
--They have a grandiose sense of self; they think they are better than everyone else, and if they have more money or power than others they use this to their constant advantage. Moreover, the fact that a sociopath may be wealthier than others or in a position of power over others merely confirms in the sociopath’s mind that he/she is better than others. In the modern age, who feels more entitled than the richest among us? The Koch brothers, desperately trying to buy the government, runs roughshod over the poor, the elderly, minorities, and social safety nets. They care only their own profits. We should have carved a big “S” in their foreheads at birth, just as Brad Pitt marked Christoph Waltz with a swastika in “Inglourious Basterds.” Our lives would be much better if we knew whom we were dealing with upfront.
--They are pathological liars; when they are committing acts that harm the greater good of society, they never tell the truth, even if they are caught in a lie. To this day, Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld and their lackeys still deny that the Iraq war was about oil, despite all evidence to the contrary.
--They have no remorse or guilt, regardless of how heinous their actions are. When recently asked if he would do anything differently, if he had to do it all over again, Cheney responded, “No.”
--They lack empathy and are callous in their treatment of others. Mitt Romney dismissed 47% of the country with one glib comment.
--They are contemptuous of those who seek to understand them. One of Allen Dulles’s protégés, Frank Wisner, head of the CIA’s Operation Mockingbird in the 1950s, once famously bragged, “The press claims to be free and open in America. But they are nothing but my personal puppets. I can pull any string I want and they will follow along.”
--They do not perceive that anything is wrong with them. Even if they are proven wrong, and even if all about them acknowledge their wrongdoing, the sociopath will never admit to wrongdoing. See Dick Cheney quote above.
--They are authoritarians; in many cases, they were raised in authoritarian homes where the appearance of uniformity and conformity far outweighed love, compassion, empathy, and charity as laudable qualities. Henry Kissinger once said of Richard Nixon (a raging sociopath), “Imagine what he could have been if anyone had ever loved him.”
--They are secretive; at all costs they strive to keep their true behaviors and thoughts hidden. Allen and Foster Dulles, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, George Bush, Richard Nixon, and Oliver North were nothing if not secretive.
--They are paranoid. Can you imagine anyone more paranoid than Dick Nixon?
--They diligently present a “normal” outward appearance when engaging others. This is what confounds us about all sociopaths. Usually we don’t unmask them until it is too late.
--They experience pleasure from enslaving their victims. And all people they encounter are potential victims, even loved ones. “Loved ones” is a misnomer, because sociopaths are incapable of love. Again, Dick Cheney is the perfect example of someone who seemed to derive pleasure from inflicting pain. Witness the detainees at Guantanamo. Cheney does not consider what he did torture, yet a 600-page nonpartisan report says he did exactly that.
--When they collaborate, they feed off one another, and their actions become even more diabolical. No better example of this than the Cheney-Rumsfeld partnerships during the two Bush presidencies.
Indian Oil and Environment Minister Veerappa Moily has added fuel to the debate about genetically modified organisms (GMOs) by approving field trials of 200 GM food crops on behalf of companies like Monsanto, Mahyco, Bayer and BASF. This is despite Supreme Court appointed Technical Expert Committee (TEC) recommending a ten-year moratorium on GM organism approvals until scientifically robust protocols, independent and competent institutions to assess risks and a strong regulatory system are developed.
The U.S. government and the Russian government have both been forced into positions where neither one of them can afford to back down. If Barack Obama backs down, he will be greatly criticized for being "weak" and for having been beaten by Vladimir Putin once again. If Putin backs down, he will be greatly criticized [...]
Pseudo-Libertarian REASON magazine calls Jenny McCarthy an ‘ENEMY OF FREEDOM’ for daring to question...
The European Model
Keller’s final point is that Putin is being heavy handed over the Ukrainian/EU integration crisis, but Keller avoids discussing the deep historic and ethnic links between the two nations. Most Americans would agree that Russia should stay out of NAFTA negotiations, seeing North America as clearly not within the Russian sphere of influence. Ukrainians are deeply divided over the integration with Europe, so why not let the Ukrainians and Russians work out their trade relations without the American government getting involved?
Khdorkovsky eventually wound up the billionaire owner of Yukos Oil, which he planned to sell to Exxon Mobil . Khdorkovsky also had political ambitions, creating the Open Russian Foundation and putting Henry Kissinger and Lord Jacob Rothschild on the board of directors. He was clearly eyeing political power by making close ties with the West, too close for the Kremlin, even being named to the Advisory Board of the Carlyle Group.
Putin and the American People
Americans probably don't approve of roads where members of one religion can drive, but members of another religion must walk, as occurs in Hebron and reported on by Ynet, "Jewish residents are allowed to cross the road by vehicle, but Palestinians are now only permitted to cross by foot or by bicycle." They probably wouldn't look fondly on back of the bus seating for women, yet in spite of this type of segregation in a country that claims to be democratic, the NY Times doesn't feel compelled to demonize Mr. Netanyahu and his 'socially conservative' Likud party.
The Interests of the American People
The Money Changers Serenade: A New Plot Hatches Paul Craig Roberts Former Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, a protege of Treasury Secretaries Rubin and Summers, has received his reward for continuing the Rubin-Summers-Paulson policy of supporting the “banks too big to fail” at the expense of the economy and American people. For his service to the…
The post The Money Changers Serenade: A New Plot Hatches — Paul Craig Roberts appeared first on PaulCraigRoberts.org.
“Control oil and you control nations,” said US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger in the 1970s. “Control food and you control the people.”
Global food control has nearly been achieved, by reducing seed diversity with GMO (genetically modified) seeds that are distributed by only a few transnational corporations. But this agenda has been implemented at grave cost to our health; and if the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) passes, control over not just our food but our health, our environment and our financial system will be in the hands of transnational corporations.
Profits Before Populations
Genetic engineering has made proprietary control possible over the seeds on which the world’s food supply depends. “Terminator” genes enable the production of sterile seeds, using a synthetic chemical catalyst appropriately called “Traitor” to induce seed sterility. Farmers must therefore buy seeds from their patent owners year after year. To cover these costs, food prices are raised; but the harm is far greater than to our pocketbooks.
According to an Acres USA interview of plant pathologist Don Huber, Professor Emeritus at Purdue University, two modified traits account for practically all of the genetically modified crops grown in the world today. One involves insect resistance. The other, more disturbing modification involves insensitivity to glyphosate-based herbicides (plant-killing chemicals). Often known as Roundup after the best-selling Monsanto product of that name, glyphosate poisons everything in its path except plants genetically modified to resist it.
Glyphosate-based herbicides are now the most commonly used herbicides in the world. Glyphosate is an essential partner to the GMOs that are the principal business of the burgeoning biotech industry. Glyphosate is a “broad-spectrum” herbicide that destroys indiscriminately, not by killing unwanted plants directly but by tying up access to critical nutrients.
Because of the insidious way in which it works, it has been sold as a relatively benign replacement for the devastating earlier dioxin-based herbicides. But a barrage of experimental data has now shown glyphosate and the GMO foods incorporating it to pose serious dangers to health. Compounding the risk is the toxicity of “inert” ingredients used to make glyphosate more potent. Researchers have found, for example, that the surfactant POEA can kill human cells, particularly embryonic, placental and umbilical cord cells. But these risks have been conveniently ignored.
The widespread use of GMO foods and glyphosate herbicides helps explain the anomaly that the US spends over twice as much per capita on healthcare as the average developed country, yet it is rated far down the scale of the world’s healthiest populations. The World Health Organization has ranked the US LAST out of 17 developed nations for overall health.
Sixty to seventy percent of the foods in US supermarkets are now genetically modified. By contrast, in at least 26 other countries—including Switzerland, Australia, Austria, China, India, France, Germany, Hungary, Luxembourg, Greece, Bulgaria, Poland, Italy, Mexico and Russia—GMOs are totally or partially banned; and significant restrictions on GMOs exist in about sixty other countries.
A ban on GMO and glyphosate use might go far toward improving the health of Americans. But the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a global trade agreement for which the Obama Administration has sought Fast Track status, would block that sort of cause-focused approach to the healthcare crisis.
Roundup’s Insidious Effects
Roundup-resistant crops escape being killed by glyphosate, but they do not avoid absorbing it into their tissues. Herbicide-tolerant crops have substantially higher levels of herbicide residues than other crops. In fact, many countries have had to increase their legally allowable levels—by up to 50 times—in order to accommodate the introduction of GM crops. In the European Union, residues in food are set to rise 100-150 times if a new proposal by Monsanto is approved. Meanwhile, herbicide-tolerant “super-weeds” have adapted to the chemical, requiring even more toxic doses and new toxic chemicals to kill the plant.
Human enzymes are affected by glyphosate just as plant enzymes are: the chemical blocks the uptake of manganese and other essential minerals. Without those minerals, we cannot properly metabolize our food. That helps explain the rampant epidemic of obesity in the United States. People eat and eat in an attempt to acquire the nutrients that are simply not available in their food.
Glyphosate’s inhibition of cytochrome P450 (CYP) enzymes is an overlooked component of its toxicity to mammals. CYP enzymes play crucial roles in biology . . . . Negative impact on the body is insidious and manifests slowly over time as inflammation damages cellular systems throughout the body. Consequences are most of the diseases and conditions associated with a Western diet, which include gastrointestinal disorders, obesity, diabetes, heart disease, depression, autism, infertility, cancer and Alzheimer’s disease.
More than 40 diseases have been linked to glyphosate use, and more keep appearing. In September 2013, the National University of Rio Cuarto, Argentina, published research finding that glyphosate enhances the growth of fungi that produce aflatoxin B1, one of the most carcinogenic of substances. A doctor from Chaco, Argentina, told Associated Press, “We’ve gone from a pretty healthy population to one with a high rate of cancer, birth defects and illnesses seldom seen before.” Fungi growths have increased significantly in US corn crops.
Glyphosate has also done serious damage to the environment. According to an October 2012 report by the Institute of Science in Society:
Agribusiness claims that glyphosate and glyphosate-tolerant crops will improve crop yields, increase farmers’ profits and benefit the environment by reducing pesticide use. Exactly the opposite is the case. . . . [T]he evidence indicates that glyphosate herbicides and glyphosate-tolerant crops have had wide-ranging detrimental effects, including glyphosate resistant super weeds, virulent plant (and new livestock) pathogens, reduced crop health and yield, harm to off-target species from insects to amphibians and livestock, as well as reduced soil fertility.
Politics Trumps Science
In light of these adverse findings, why have Washington and the European Commission continued to endorse glyphosate as safe? Critics point to lax regulations, heavy influence from corporate lobbyists, and a political agenda that has more to do with power and control than protecting the health of the people.
In the ground-breaking 2007 book Seeds of Destruction: The Hidden Agenda of Genetic Manipulation, William Engdahl states that global food control and depopulation became US strategic policy under Rockefeller protégé Henry Kissinger. Along with oil geopolitics, they were to be the new “solution” to the threats to US global power and continued US access to cheap raw materials from the developing world. In line with that agenda, the government has shown extreme partisanship in favor of the biotech agribusiness industry, opting for a system in which the industry “voluntarily” polices itself. Bio-engineered foods are treated as “natural food additives,” not needing any special testing.
Jeffrey M. Smith, Executive Director of the Institute for Responsible Technology, confirms that US Food and Drug Administration policy allows biotech companies to determine if their own foods are safe. Submission of data is completely voluntary. He concludes:
In the critical arena of food safety research, the biotech industry is without accountability, standards, or peer-review. They’ve got bad science down to a science.
Whether or not depopulation is an intentional part of the agenda, widespread use of GMO and glyphosate is having that result. The endocrine-disrupting properties of glyphosate have been linked to infertility, miscarriage, birth defects and arrested sexual development. In Russian experiments, animals fed GM soy were sterile by the third generation. Vast amounts of farmland soil are also being systematically ruined by the killing of beneficial microorganisms that allow plant roots to uptake soil nutrients.
In Gary Null’s eye-opening documentary Seeds of Death: Unveiling the Lies of GMOs, Dr. Bruce Lipton warns, “We are leading the world into the sixth mass extinction of life on this planet. . . . Human behavior is undermining the web of life.”
The TPP and International Corporate Control
As the devastating conclusions of these and other researchers awaken people globally to the dangers of Roundup and GMO foods, transnational corporations are working feverishly with the Obama administration to fast-track the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a trade agreement that would strip governments of the power to regulate transnational corporate activities. Negotiations have been kept secret from Congress but not from corporate advisors, 600 of whom have been consulted and know the details. According to Barbara Chicherio in Nation of Change:
The Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) has the potential to become the biggest regional Free Trade Agreement in history. . . .
The chief agricultural negotiator for the US is the former Monsanto lobbyist, Islam Siddique. If ratified the TPP would impose punishing regulations that give multinational corporations unprecedented right to demand taxpayer compensation for policies that corporations deem a barrier to their profits.
. . . They are carefully crafting the TPP to insure that citizens of the involved countries have no control over food safety, what they will be eating, where it is grown, the conditions under which food is grown and the use of herbicides and pesticides.
Food safety is only one of many rights and protections liable to fall to this super-weapon of international corporate control. In an April 2013 interview on The Real News Network, Kevin Zeese called the TPP “NAFTA on steroids” and “a global corporate coup.” He warned:
No matter what issue you care about—whether its wages, jobs, protecting the environment . . . this issue is going to adversely affect it . . . .
If a country takes a step to try to regulate the financial industry or set up a public bank to represent the public interest, it can be sued . . . .
Return to Nature: Not Too Late
There is a safer, saner, more earth-friendly way to feed nations. While Monsanto and US regulators are forcing GM crops on American families, Russian families are showing what can be done with permaculture methods on simple garden plots. In 2011, 40% of Russia’s food was grown on dachas (cottage gardens or allotments). Dacha gardens produced over 80% of the country’s fruit and berries, over 66% of the vegetables, almost 80% of the potatoes and nearly 50% of the nation’s milk, much of it consumed raw. According to Vladimir Megre, author of the best-selling Ringing Cedars Series:
Essentially, what Russian gardeners do is demonstrate that gardeners can feed the world – and you do not need any GMOs, industrial farms, or any other technological gimmicks to guarantee everybody’s got enough food to eat. Bear in mind that Russia only has 110 days of growing season per year – so in the US, for example, gardeners’ output could be substantially greater. Today, however, the area taken up by lawns in the US is two times greater than that of Russia’s gardens – and it produces nothing but a multi-billion-dollar lawn care industry.
In the US, only about 0.6 percent of the total agricultural area is devoted to organic farming. This area needs to be vastly expanded if we are to avoid “the sixth mass extinction.” But first, we need to urge our representatives to stop Fast Track, vote no on the TPP, and pursue a global phase-out of glyphosate-based herbicides and GMO foods. Our health, our finances and our environment are at stake.
Ellen Brown is an attorney, president of the Public Banking Institute, and author of twelve books, including the best-selling Web of Debt. In The Public Bank Solution, her latest book, she explores successful public banking models historically and globally. Her blog articles are at EllenBrown.com.
Filed under: Ellen Brown Articles/Commentary
By Andrew Gavin Marshall. Cross-posted from Occupy.com. The world today is in the midst of the most monumental social, political and economic upheavals in human history – a state of continual protests, uprisings and what may be considered inevitable revolution … Continue reading →
World of Resistance (WOR) Report, Part 1: The Global Awakening was originally published on Washington's Blog
In Costa Rica, publicly-owned banks have been available for so long and work so well that people take for granted that any country that knows how to run an economy has a public banking option. Costa Ricans are amazed to hear there is only one public depository bank in the United States (the Bank of North Dakota), and few people have private access to it.
So says political activist Scott Bidstrup, who writes:
For the last decade, I have resided in Costa Rica, where we have had a “Public Option” for the last 64 years.
There are 29 licensed banks, mutual associations and credit unions in Costa Rica, of which four were established as national, publicly-owned banks in 1949. They have remained open and in public hands ever since—in spite of enormous pressure by the I.M.F. [International Monetary Fund] and the U.S. to privatize them along with other public assets. The Costa Ricans have resisted that pressure—because the value of a public banking option has become abundantly clear to everyone in this country.
During the last three decades, countless private banks, mutual associations (a kind of Savings and Loan) and credit unions have come and gone, and depositors in them have inevitably lost most of the value of their accounts.
But the four state banks, which compete fiercely with each other, just go on and on. Because they are stable and none have failed in 31 years, most Costa Ricans have moved the bulk of their money into them. Those four banks now account for fully 80% of all retail deposits in Costa Rica, and the 25 private institutions share among themselves the rest.
According to a 2003 report by the World Bank, the public sector banks dominating Costa Rica’s onshore banking system include three state-owned commercial banks (Banco Nacional, Banco de Costa Rica, and Banco Crédito Agrícola de Cartago) and a special-charter bank called Banco Popular, which in principle is owned by all Costa Rican workers. These banks accounted for 75 percent of total banking deposits in 2003.
In Competition Policies in Emerging Economies: Lessons and Challenges from Central America and Mexico (2008), Claudia Schatan writes that Costa Rica nationalized all of its banks and imposed a monopoly on deposits in 1949. Effectively, only state-owned banks existed in the country after that. The monopoly was loosened in the 1980s and was eliminated in 1995. But the extensive network of branches developed by the public banks and the existence of an unlimited state guarantee on their deposits has made Costa Rica the only country in the region in which public banking clearly predominates.
Scott Bidstrup comments:
By 1980, the Costa Rican economy had grown to the point where it was by far the richest nation in Latin America in per-capita terms. It was so much richer than its neighbors that Latin American economic statistics were routinely quoted with and without Costa Rica included. Growth rates were in the double digits for a generation and a half. And the prosperity was broadly shared. Costa Rica’s middle class – nonexistent before 1949 – became the dominant part of the economy during this period. Poverty was all but abolished, favelas [shanty towns] disappeared, and the economy was booming.
This was not because Costa Rica had natural resources or other natural advantages over its neighbors. To the contrary, says Bidstrup:
At the conclusion of the civil war of 1948 (which was brought on by the desperate social conditions of the masses), Costa Rica was desperately poor, the poorest nation in the hemisphere, as it had been since the Spanish Conquest.
The winner of the 1948 civil war, José “Pepe” Figueres, now a national hero, realized that it would happen again if nothing was done to relieve the crushing poverty and deprivation of the rural population. He formulated a plan in which the public sector would be financed by profits from state-owned enterprises, and the private sector would be financed by state banking.
A large number of state-owned capitalist enterprises were founded. Their profits were returned to the national treasury, and they financed dozens of major infrastructure projects. At one point, more than 240 state-owned corporations were providing so much money that Costa Rica was building infrastructure like mad and financing it largely with cash. Yet it still had the lowest taxes in the region, and it could still afford to spend 30% of its national income on health and education.
A provision of the Figueres constitution guaranteed a job to anyone who wanted one. At one point, 42% of the working population of Costa Rica was working for the government directly or in one of the state-owned corporations. Most of the rest of the economy not involved in the coffee trade was working for small mom-and-pop companies that were suppliers to the larger state-owned firms—and it was state banking, offering credit on favorable terms, that made the founding and growth of those small firms possible. Had they been forced to rely on private-sector banking, few of them would have been able to obtain the financing needed to become established and prosperous. State banking was key to the private sector growth. Lending policy was government policy and was designed to facilitate national development, not bankers’ wallets. Virtually everything the country needed was locally produced. Toilets, window glass, cement, rebar, roofing materials, window and door joinery, wire and cable, all were made by state-owned capitalist enterprises, most of them quite profitable. Costa Rica was the dominant player regionally in most consumer products and was on the move internationally.
Needless to say, this good example did not sit well with foreign business interests. It earned Figueres two coup attempts and one attempted assassination. He responded by abolishing the military (except for the Coast Guard), leaving even more revenues for social services and infrastructure.
When attempted coups and assassination failed, says Bidstrup, Costa Rica was brought down with a form of economic warfare called the “currency crisis” of 1982. Over just a few months, the cost of financing its external debt went from 3% to extremely high variable rates (27% at one point). As a result, along with every other Latin American country, Costa Rica was facing default. Bidstrup writes:
That’s when the IMF and World Bank came to town.
Privatize everything in sight, we were told. We had little choice, so we did. End your employment guarantee, we were told. So we did. Open your markets to foreign competition, we were told. So we did. Most of the former state-owned firms were sold off, mostly to foreign corporations. Many ended up shut down in a short time by foreigners who didn’t know how to run them, and unemployment appeared (and with it, poverty and crime) for the first time in a decade. Many of the local firms went broke or sold out quickly in the face of ruinous foreign competition. Very little of Costa Rica’s manufacturing economy is still locally owned. And so now, instead of earning forex [foreign exchange] through exporting locally produced goods and retaining profits locally, these firms are now forex liabilities, expatriating their profits and earning relatively little through exports. Costa Ricans now darkly joke that their economy is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the United States.
The dire effects of the IMF’s austerity measures were confirmed in a 1993 book excerpt by Karen Hansen-Kuhn titled “Structural Adjustment in Costa Rica: Sapping the Economy.” She noted that Costa Rica stood out in Central America because of its near half-century history of stable democracy and well-functioning government, featuring the region’s largest middle class and the absence of both an army and a guerrilla movement. Eliminating the military allowed the government to support a Scandinavian-type social-welfare system that still provides free health care and education, and has helped produce the lowest infant mortality rate and highest average life expectancy in all of Central America.
In the 1970s, however, the country fell into debt when coffee and other commodity prices suddenly fell, and oil prices shot up. To get the dollars to buy oil, Costa Rica had to resort to foreign borrowing; and in 1980, the U.S. Federal Reserve under Paul Volcker raised interest rates to unprecedented levels.
In The Gods of Money (2009), William Engdahl fills in the back story. In 1971, Richard Nixon took the U.S. dollar off the gold standard, causing it to drop precipitously in international markets. In 1972, US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and President Nixon had a clandestine meeting with the Shah of Iran. In 1973, a group of powerful financiers and politicians met secretly in Sweden and discussed effectively “backing” the dollar with oil. An arrangement was then finalized in which the oil-producing countries of OPEC would sell their oil only in U.S. dollars. The quid pro quo was military protection and a strategic boost in oil prices. The dollars would wind up in Wall Street and London banks, where they would fund the burgeoning U.S. debt. In 1974, an oil embargo conveniently caused the price of oil to quadruple. Countries without sufficient dollar reserves had to borrow from Wall Street and London banks to buy the oil they needed. Increased costs then drove up prices worldwide.
By late 1981, says Hansen-Kuhn, Costa Rica had one of the world’s highest levels of debt per capita, with debt-service payments amounting to 60 percent of export earnings. When the government had to choose between defending its stellar social-service system or bowing to its creditors, it chose the social services. It suspended debt payments to nearly all its creditors, predominately commercial banks. But that left it without foreign exchange. That was when it resorted to borrowing from the World Bank and IMF, which imposed “austerity measures” as a required condition. The result was to increase poverty levels dramatically.
Bidstrup writes of subsequent developments:
Indebted to the IMF, the Costa Rican government had to sell off its state-owned enterprises, depriving it of most of its revenue, and the country has since been forced to eat its seed corn. No major infrastructure projects have been conceived and built to completion out of tax revenues, and maintenance of existing infrastructure built during that era must wait in line for funding, with predictable results.
About every year, there has been a closure of one of the private banks or major savings coöps. In every case, there has been a corruption or embezzlement scandal, proving the old saying that the best way to rob a bank is to own one. This is why about 80% of retail deposits in Costa Rica are now held by the four state banks. They’re trusted.
Costa Rica still has a robust economy, and is much less affected by the vicissitudes of rising and falling international economic tides than enterprises in neighboring countries, because local businesses can get money when they need it. During the credit freezeup of 2009, things went on in Costa Rica pretty much as normal. Yes, there was a contraction in the economy, mostly as a result of a huge drop in foreign tourism, but it would have been far worse if local business had not been able to obtain financing when it was needed. It was available because most lending activity is set by government policy, not by a local banker’s fear index.
Stability of the local economy is one of the reasons that Costa Rica has never had much difficulty in attracting direct foreign investment, and is still the leader in the region in that regard. And it is clear to me that state banking is one of the principal reasons why.
The value and importance of a public banking sector to the overall stability and health of an economy has been well proven by the Costa Rican experience. Meanwhile, our neighbors, with their fully privatized banking systems have, de facto, encouraged people to keep their money in Mattress First National, and as a result, the financial sectors in neighboring countries have not prospered. Here, they have—because most money is kept in banks that carry the full faith and credit of the Republic of Costa Rica, so the money is in the banks and available for lending. While our neighbors’ financial systems lurch from crisis to crisis, and suffer frequent resulting bank failures, the Costa Rican public system just keeps chugging along. And so does the Costa Rican economy.
My dream scenario for any third world country wishing to develop, is to do exactly what Costa Rica did so successfully for so many years. Invest in the Holy Trinity of national development—health, education and infrastructure. Pay for it with the earnings of state capitalist enterprises that are profitable because they are protected from ruinous foreign competition; and help out local private enterprise get started and grow, and become major exporters, with stable state-owned banks that prioritize national development over making bankers rich. It worked well for Costa Rica for a generation and a half. It can work for any other country as well. Including the United States.
The new Happy Planet Index, which rates countries based on how many long and happy lives they produce per unit of environmental output, has ranked Costa Rica #1 globally. The Costa Rican model is particularly instructive at a time when US citizens are groaning under the twin burdens of taxes and increased health insurance costs. Like the Costa Ricans, we could reduce taxes while increasing social services and rebuilding infrastructure, if we were to allow the government to make some money itself; and a giant first step would be for it to establish some publicly-owned banks.
Ellen Brown is an attorney, president of the Public Banking Institute, and author of twelve books, including the best-selling Web of Debt. In The Public Bank Solution, her latest book, she explores successful public banking models historically and globally. Her blog articles are at EllenBrown.com.
Filed under: Ellen Brown Articles/Commentary
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O conclave do Vaticano elegeu o Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio como o Papa Francis I
Quem é Jorge Mario Bergoglio?
Em 1973 ele foi nomeado o “provincial” da Argentina para a Companhia dos Jesuitas.
Nessa capacidade Bergoglio foi o mais alto dignitário da Ordem Jesuíta da Argentina durante a ditadura militar liderada pelo General Jorge Videla (1976-1983).
Mais tarde ele foi nomeado bispo e depois arcebispo de Buenos Aires. O Papa João Paulo II o consagrou Cardinal em 2001.
Quando a junta militar abandonou o poder em 1983, o devidamente eleito presidente Raúl Alfonsin abriu um inquérito, a Comissão da Verdade, para investigar os crimes relacionados com que ficou conhecidos como a Guerra Suja – “La Guerra Sucia”.
A junta militar tinha sido encobertamente apoada por Washington.
O vice-representante mais importante de Kissinger na América Latina, William Rogers, o informou dois dias depois do golpe que “teremos que esperar uma quantia considerável de repressão, provávelmente muita sanguenta, dentro em pouco tempo.”…(Arquivo da Segurança Nacional, 23 de março, 2006)
Um grande julgamento foi ironicamente aberto em 5 de março 2013, uma semana antes da investidura do Cardinal Bergoglio como Pontífice. O processo sendo desenvolvido em Buenos Aires tem em vista:
“uma avaliação da totalidade dos crimes cometidos abaixo da Operação Condor, uma campanha coordenada por vários ditadores da América Latina, apoiados pelos Estados Unidos nos anos de 1970 e 1980, para caçar, torturar e matar dezenas de milhares de oponentes desses regimes militares”
Para mais detalhes veja Operation Condor: Trial On Latin American Rendition and Assassination Program By Carlos Osorio and Peter Kornbluh,,March 10, 2013.
(Foto acima: Henry Kissinger e General Jorge Videla (anos de 1970)
NÃO CLASSIFICADO 8/3/76
DEPARTAMENTO DO ESTADO
PARA: ARA – Harry W. Shlaudeman
ARA RELATÓRIO MENSAL( JULHO)
A TERCEIRA GUERRA MUNDIAL E A AMÉRICA LATINA
Os regimes militares do cone sul da América do Sul veêm-se
como tendo que pôr-se em ordem de batalha:
– de um lado pelo marxismo internacional e seus exponentes terroristas, e
– do outro lado pela hostilidade das democracias industriais que são enganadas pela propaganda marxista.
Em resposta eles estão se unindo no que se poderá tornar num bloco político de uma certa coesão. Mas, mais importante, eles estão juntando forças para erradicar a “subversão”, uma palavra que mais e mais vem se tornando num sinônimo de oposição não-violenta de esquerda, e de centro-esquerda. As forças de segurança do cone sul
– agora estão a coordenar mais estritamente suas atividades de inteligência;
– estão também operando nos territórios dos países uns dos outros em busca de “subversivos”;
– eles estabeleceram a Operation Condor para achar e matar terroristas do “Comité Revolucionário de Coordenação” nos seus próprios países, e na Europa. O Brazil está cooperando, mas não em operações homicidas.
A junta militar liderada pelo General Jorge Videla (a esquerda) foi responsável por incontáveis assassinatos, incluindo assassinatos de sacerdotes e freiras que se opuseram ao domínio militar que acompanhou o golpe patrocinado pela CIA, golpe esse que derrubou o governo de Isabel Peron, em 24 de março de 1976.
“Videla estava entre os generais que foram condenados por crimes contra os direitos humanos, crimes esses que incluiam “desaparecimentos”, tortura, assassinatos, e sequestramentos. Em 1985, Videla foi sentenciado a prisão perpétua, na prisão militar de Magdalena.
Wall Street e a Agenda Econômica Neoliberal
Uma das nomeações mais importantes da junta militar (como consequência das intruções de Wall Street) foi a do Ministro da Economia, José Alfredo Martinez de Hoz, um membro do estabelecimento de negócios, comércio e investimentos da Argentina; um amigo íntimo de David Rockefeller.
O pacote neoliberal da política macro-econômica adotada sob Martinez de Hoz foi uma “cópia-carbono” daquela imposta em outubro de 1973 no Chile pela ditadura de Pinochet abaixo dos conselhos vindos dos “Meninos de Chicago”- “Chicago Boys”; política essa imposta depois do golpe de estado de 11 de setembro de 1973, e do assassinato do presidente Salvador Allende.
Os salários foram imediatamente congelados, por decreto. O poder aquisitivo real no país caiu em colápso por mais de 30 porcento, nos tres meses que se seguiram ao golpe militar de 24 de março de 1976. (Avaliações do autor, Cordoba, Argentina, julho de 1976). A população argentina ficou repentinamente empobrecida.
Abaixo da direçäo do Ministro da Economia José alfredo Martinez de Hoz, a política monetária do banco central foi em grande parte determinada por Wall Street e pelo FMI, o Fundo Monetário Internacional. O mercado de câmbio foi manipulado. O Peso argentino foi propositadamente posto acima do seu valor real, o que levou a um débito exterior insuperável. Toda a Economia Nacional foi precipitada à falência.
(Foto acima: Da esquerda para a direita: José Alfredo Martinez de Hoz, David Rockefeller e General Jorge Videla)
Wall Street e a Hierarquia da Igreja Católica
Wall Street esteve sólidamente apoiando a junta militar que empenhava-se na “Guerra Suja” em benefício da mesma. Por seu turno, a hierarquia da Igreja Católica teve o papel, um papel central, de manter a legitimidade da junta militar.
A Ordem dos Jesuitas –que representava a Conservadora, mas no entanto a mais influente facção da Igreja Católica- estava intimamente associada com a elite econômica da Argentina, e isso contra os chamados “de esquerda” do movimento Peronista.
“A Guerra Suja”: Alegações dirigidas contra o Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio
Condenar a ditadura militar (inclusive suas violações dos direitos humanos) era um tabú na Igreja Católica. Enquanto os altos escalões da Igreja apoiavam a junta militar, a base popular da mesma estava firmemente contra a imposição do governo militar.
Em 2005 a advogada de direitos humanos Myriam Bregman entrou com um processo judicial contra o Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, acusando-o de conspirar com a junta militar quando do sequestro de dois padres jesuítas em 1976.
Alguns anos mais tarde, os sobreviventes da “Guerra Suja” acusaram abertamente o Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio de cumplicidade nos sequestros dos padres Francisco Jalics e Orlando Yorio, assim como nos sequestros de seis membros de suas paróquias, (El Mundo, 8 de novembro de 2010)
(Foto acima: Jorge Mario Bergoglio e General Jorge Videla)
Bergoglio, que na época era o “provincial” da Companhia dos Jesuitas, tinha dado ordens para que os dois padres, jesuitas, “de esquerda”, e oponentes do governo militar “deixassem seus trabalhos paroquiais”, o que quer dizer que foram despedidos. Isso acompanhando divisões na Companhia dos Jesuitas quanto ao papel da Igreja Católica em relação a junta militar.
Enquanto os dois padres – Francisco Jalics e Orlando Yorio – sequestrados pelos esquadrões da morte em maio de 1976 foram soltos cinco meses mais tarde depois de terem sido torturados; outras seis pessoas relacionadas a paróquia, pessoas essas que também tinham sido sequestradas na mesma operação, foram dadas como “desaparecidas”. Esses sequestrados desaparecidos eram quatro professores e dois dos maridos de duas das professoras do grupo dos seis.
De quando de sua libertação o padre Orlando Yorio acusou Bergoglio de efetivamente os terem entregue [incluindo as seis outras pessoas] para os esquadrões da morte … Jalics se recusou a discutir a queixa depois de ter entrado em reclusão num monastério alemão.” (Associated Press, 13 de março de 2013, ênfases acrescentadas).
“Durante o primeiro julgamento da junta militar em 1985, Yorio declarou: “Eu tenho certeza de que ele mesmo deu uma lista com os nossos nomes para a Marinha.” Os dois padres tinham sido levados para o centro de tortura da Escola de Mecânica da Marinha (ESMA na sigla inglesa) e mantidos lá por cinco meses antes de serem arrastados e jogados numa cidade dos subúrbios. (Veja Bill van Auken, “The Dirty War” Pope, World Socialist Website and Global Research, March 14, 2013)
Entre aqueles “desaparecidos” pelos esquadrões da morte estavam Mónica Candelaria Mignone e María Marta Vásquez Ocampo. Mónica Mignone era filha do fundador do Centro de Estudos Legais e Sociais, CELS, e María Marta Ocampo era filha da presidente das Madres de Plaza de Mayo, Martha Ocampo de Vásquez (El Periodista Online, março 2013).
María Marta Vásquez, seu marido César Lugones (veja foto) e Mónica Candelaria Mignone alegadamente “entregues aos esquadrões da morte” pelo provincial” jesuita Jorge Mario Bergoglio estão entre os milhares de “desaparecidos da “Guerra Suja” da Argentina, a qual foi encobertamente apoiada por Washington, abaixo da “Operação Condor”. (Veja memorialmagro.com.ar)
No decorrer do julgamento iniciado em 2005:
“Bergoglio [Papa Francis I] por duas vezes invocou seu direito abaixo da lei argentina de poder se recusar a apresentar-se em tribunal público, e quando ele afinal testemunhou em 2010 suas respostas foram evasivas”. “Pelo menos dois casos envolviam Bergoglio diretamente. Um examinava a tortura de dois dos seus padres jesuitas – Orlando Yorio e Francisco Jalics – que tinham sido sequestrados em 1976 em bairros pobres onde eles defendiam a teologia da liberação. Yorio acusou Bergoglio de efetivamente os terem entregue aos esquadrões da morte … do quando recusando-se a declarar ao regime que ele endossava o trabalho desses dois seus padres. Jalics recusou-se a comentar o caso depois de ter se retirado para um monastério alemão.” (Los Angeles Times, 1 de abril, 2005)
“Santa comunhão para os ditadores”
As acusações dirigidas contra Bergoglio em relação aos dois padres jesuitas e aos seis membros das paróquias dos mesmos, seriam sómente a ponta do icebergue. Conquanto Bergoglio fosse uma pessoa importante da Igreja Católica, ele não seria o único a apoiar a junta militar.
De acordo com a advogada Myriam Bregman: “As próprias declarações de Bergoglio provam que representantes oficiais da igreja sabiam, e isso logo do começo que a junta estava torturando e matando seus cidadãos” e ainda assim endossaram publicamente os ditadores. “A ditadura não poderia ter agido dessa maneira sem esse apoio chave,” (Los Angeles Times, 1 abril de 2005, ênfases acrescentadas.
(Foto acima: General Jorge Videla comungando. A data e o nome do padre não confirmados)
Toda a hierarquia católica estava apoiando a ditadura militar patrocinada pelos Estados Unidos. Vale a pena recordar que em 23 de março de 1976, na véspera do golpe militar:
“Videla e outros conspiradores receberam a benção do arcebispo do Paraná, Adolfo Tortolo, que também serviu como o vigário das forças armadas. No próprio dia da tomada do poder, os líderes militares tiveram um longo encontro com os líderes da conferência dos bispos. Quando ele saiu dessa conferência o arcebispo Tortolo declarou que mesmo que “a igreja tenha sua própria missão específica … há circunstâncias nas quais ela não pode deixar de participar, mesmo quando isso relacione-se a problemas da ordem específica do estado.” Ele fez mesmo pressão moral para que os argentinos “cooperassem duma maneira positiva” com o novo governo.” (The Humanist.org, janeiro de 2011, ênfases acrescentadas)
Numa entrevista conduzida pelo El Sur, o General Jorge Videla, que agora está servindo uma pena de prisão perpétua, por causa dos seus crimes contra a humanidade confirmou que:
“Ele tinha mantido a hierarquia católica do país informada quanto a “fazer desaparecer” oponentes políticos, e que os líderes católicos tinham oferecido conselhos de como “conduzir” a política de desaparecimentos.
Jorge Videla disse que ele tinha tido “muitas conversações” com o Cardinal Raúl Francisco Primatesta, da Argentina, a respeito da guerra suja do governo contra os ativistas da esquerda. Ele disse que também havia havido conversações com outros bispos líderes da conferência episcopal na Argentina, assim como com o núncio papal do país na época, Pio Laghi. “Eles nos aconselharam a respeito da maneira de como lidar com a situação,” disse Videla” (Tom Henningan, Former Argentinian dictator says he told Catholic Church of disappeared, Irish Times, 24 de julho de 2012, ênfases acrescentadas)
É de valor o observar-se, que de acordo com uma declaração do arcebispo Adolfo Tortolo, os militares deveriam sempre consultar com alguma membro da alta hierarquia católica no caso de “prisão” de algum membro nas alas mais baixas da hierarquia do cléro. Essa declaração foi feita especialmente em relação aos dois padres jesuitas sequestrados, dos quais as atividades pastorais estavam abaixo da autoridade do “provincial” da Companhia Jesuita, Jorge Mario Bergoglio. (El Periodista Online, março de 2013).
Em endossando a junta militar, a hierarquia católica foi cúmplice de tortura e de morte de massas, num estimado de “22.000 mortos e desaparecidos, de 1976 a 1978. … Milhares de outras vítimas foram mortas entre 1978 e 1983, quando os militares foram forçados a deixar o poder.” (Arquivo da Segurança Nacional, 23 de março de 2006).
O papel do Vaticano
Pio Langhi, o Núncio Apostólico do Vaticano na Argentina admitiu o conhecimento a respeito de tortura e massacrres.
Langhi tinha contatos pessoais com membros da direção da junta militar incluindo o General Videla e o Almirante Emilio Eduardo Massera.
O Almirante Emilio Massera, em próximo contacto com seus dirigentes americanos, foi o mentor “Da Guerra Suja”. Abaixo dos auspícios do regime militar ele estabeleceu:
“um centro de interrogatório e tortura na Escola Naval de Mecânica – Naval School of Mechanics, ESMA [perto de Buenos Aires], … Esse era um estabelecimento sofisticado, para muitos fins, vital ao plano militar de assassinar cerca de 30.000 “inimigos do estado”. …Muitos milhares dos prisioneiros da ESMA, incluindo, por exemplo, duas freiras francesas, foram de maneira rotineira torturados brutalmente sem misericórdia, antes de serem assassinados ou jogados de algum avião no Rio de la Plata.
(Veja foto acima: O Nuncio do Vaticano Pio Langhi e o General Jorge Videla)
Massera, o membro mais vigoroso do triunvirato, fez o seu melhor para manter seus elos com Washington. Ele participou no desenvolvimentoo do Plano Condor, que era um plano de colaboração para coordenar o terrorismo sendo praticado pelos regimes militares sulamericanos. (Hugh O´ Shaughnessy, Amiral Emilio Massera: Naval officer who took part in the 1976 coup in Argentina and was later jailed for his part in the junta’s crimes, The Independent, 10 de novembro de 2010, ênfases acrescentadas)
Relatórios confirmam que o representante do Vaticano Pio Laghi e Amiral Emilio Massera eram amigos.
(Foto: Almirante Emilio Massera, o arquiteto da “Guerra Suja” sendo recebido pelo Papa Paulo VI, no Vaticano)
A Igreja Católica: Chile vs Argentina
Tem valor por si mesmo o notar-se que nas águas do golpe militar no Chile, em 11 de setembro de 1973, o Cardinal de São Tiago do Chile, Raul Silva Henriquez, tinha condenado abertamente a junta militar liderada pelo General Augusto Pinochet. Em forte contraste com a Argentina, a posição da hierarquia católica no Chile foi eficaz em pôr freio as ondas de assassinatos polítiocs, assim como conter a extensão das violações dos direitos humanos cometitas contra os apoiantes de Salvador Allende e os oponentes do regime militar.
O homem atrás do ecumênico, e não-partidário, Comité Pro-Paz era o Cardinal Raúl Silva Henríquez. Logo depois do golpe, Silva… tomou o papel de “atores” – “upstander”, esse sendo um termo em inglês que a autora e ativista Samantha Power criou para distinguir pessoas que se levantavam contra a injustiça – muitas vezes a custo de grandes riscos pessoais – dos que denominava então, de “expectadores”.
… Logo após o golpe, Silva e outros líderes da igreja do Chile publicaram uma declaração condenando as ações dos golpistas e exprimindo dor e desgosto pelo derramamento de sangue. Esse foi um ponto fundamental de reversão para muitos membros do cléro chileno … O Cardinal Raul Silva Henriquez visitou o Estádio Nacional, e escandalizado pela escala da violência desintegradora, instruiu seus auxiliares a começarem a documentar os acontecimentos reunindo informação das milhares de pessoas que voltavam-se as igrejas, para refúgio.
As ações do Cardinal Silva o levaram a um conflito aberto com Pinochet, que não hesitou em ameaçar a igreja e o Comité Pro-Paz (Taking a Stand Against Pinochet: The Catholic Church and the Disappeared – pdf)
Se a hierarquia católica na Argentina e Jorge Mario Bergoglio tivessem tomado uma posição semelhante a do Cardinal Raul Silva Henriquez, milhares de vidas teriam sido salvas, também na Argentina.
Jorge Mario Bergoglio não era, nas palvras de Samantha Powers um expectador, “bystander”. Ele foi cúmplice em crimes contra a humanidade, crimes esses que foram muito abrangentes.
O Papa Francis I não é “um homem do povo” cometido a “ajudar os pobres” nas pegadas de São Francisco de Assis, como retratado em côro pela mantra da mídia ocidental. Muito pelo contrário: os seus esforços durante a junta militar, consistentemente atacando progressivos membros do cléro católico, assim como os ativistas empenhados em salvaguardar dos direitos humanos, ativistas esses envolvidos em implementar programas contra a grande miséria e pobreza.
Em apoiando a “Guerra Suja” argentina, José Mario Bergoglio violou abertamente os próprios dogmas e doutrinas da moralidade cristã, dogmas e doureinas esses que dão grande valor a vida humana.
“Operação Condor” e a Igreja Católica
A eleição do Cardinal Bergoglio pelo conclave do Vaticano para servir como Papa Francis I terá repercussões imediatas em relação ao corrente julgamneto “Operação Condor”, em Buenos Aires.
A Igreja estava envolvida em apoiar a junta militar. Esse é um fator que irá emergir no decorrer dos procedimentos do processo judicial. Não há dúvidas de que lá haverá esforços para obscurecer o papel da hierarquia católica e a recente nomeação do Papa Francis I, que serviu como chefe da Ordem Jesuita da Argentina durante a ditadura militar.
Jorge Mario Bergoglio: O Papa de Washington no Vaticano?
A eleição do Papa Francis I tem grandes implicações para toda a região da América Latina
Nos anos de 1970, Jorge Mario Bergolio apoiou a ditadura militar patrocinada pelos Estados Unidos.
A hierarquia católica da Argentina apoiou o governo militar. O programa militar de tortura, assassinatos e “desaparecimentos” de milhares de oponentes políticos foi apoiada e coordenada por Washington, durante a “Operação Condor”, da CIA.
Os interesses da Wall Street foram sustentados através do gabinete de Jose Alfredo Martinez de Hoz no Ministério da Economia.
A Igreja Católica na América Latina tem influência política. A Igreja também exerce um controle sobre a opinião pública. Isso é sabido e compreendido pelos arquitetos da política exterior dos Estados Unidos, assim como dos sectores de inteligência dos mesmos.
Na América Latina onde governos estão agora desafiando a dominância dos EUA, se pode esperar – dado os antecedentes de Bergoglio – que o novo Pontífice Francis I, como líder da Igreja Católica na América Latina irá, de facto, desempenhar um papel político discreto e as encobertas, mas a favor de Washington.
Com Jose Mario Bergoglio, Papa Francis I no Vaticano – homem esse que fielmente serviu os interesses dos Estados Unidos no dias de apogeu do Generla Jorge Videla e Almirante Emilio Massera – a hierarquia da Igreja Católica na América Latina poderá mais uma vez ser efetivamente manipulada para underminar governos “progressistas”, ou seja, de esquerda, não só na Argentina (em relação ao governo de Cristina Kirschner) como também através de toda a região sulamericana, incluindo Venezuela, Equador e Bolívia.
A instalação de “um papa pro-EUA” ocorreu uma semana após a morte do presidente Hugo Chavez.
“Troca de Regime” no Vaticano
O Departamento do Estado dos Estados Unidos como uma questão de rotina faz pressão sobre membros do Conselho de Segurança das Nações Unidas com o fim de influenciar os votos pertencentes as resoluções do Conselho de Segurança.
Também como uma questão de rotina as operações encobertas assim como as campanhas de propaganda dos Estados Unidos são empregadas com o objetivo de influenciar eleições nacionais, em diferente países ao redor do mundo.
A CIA de maneira similar também tem tido uma longa relação encoberta de afinidade com o Vaticano.
Teria o governo dos Estados Unidos tentado influenciar o resultado da eleição do novo pontífice?
Fortemente envolvido em servir os interesses da política exterior dos Estados Unidos na América Latina, Jorge Mario Bergoglio era o candidato preferido de Washington.
Teriam discretas pressões encobertas sido exercidas por Washington dentro da Igreja Católica, pressões essas que direta ou indiretamente, poderiam ter caido sobre os 115 cardinais, membros do conclave do Vaticano?
Notas do Autor
No começo do regime militar em 1976, eu estava trabalhando como professor visitante no Instituto de Política Social da Universidade Nacional de Cordoba, Argentina. O ponto focal da minha pesquisa, nesse tempo, era a investigação dos impactos sociais das mortais reformas macro-econômicas adotadas pela junta militar.
Eu era professor na Universidade de Cordoba durante a onda inicial dos assassinatos, a qual também mirava membros progressivos da bases populares do cléro católico.
A cidade industrial de Córdoba, localisada no norte da Argnetina, era o centro do movimento de resistência. Eu fui testemunha de como a hierarquia católica, activa e de maneira rotineira apoiava a junta militar, criando uma atmosfera de intimidação e medo através de todo o país. O sentimento geral nesse tempo era de que a Argentina tinha sido traida pelos altos escalões da Igreja Católica.
Tres anos antes quando do golpe militar no Chile em 11 de setembro de 1973, o qual levou a derrubada do governo da Unidade Popular de Salvador Allende, eu estava trabalhando como professor visitante no Departamento de Economia da Universidade Católica do Chile, em Santiago do Chile.
Nas imediatas consequências do golpe do Chile eu fui testemunha de como o Cardinal de Santiago, Raul Silva Henriquez – agindo em nome da Igreja Católica - confrontou a ditadura militar.
Global Research (atualizado em 16 de março de 2013)
14 de março de 2013-03-18
Artigo em inglês :
Tradução Anna Malm – *Licenciatura: Economia e Psicologia; Bacharelado: Ciência Política e Economia.
El cónclave del Vaticano ha elegido el Cardenal Jorge Mario Bergoglio como Papa Francisco I
¿Quién es Jorge Mario Bergoglio?
En 1973, había sido nombrado “Provincial” de la Argentina por la Compañía de Jesús.Por este cargo, Bergoglio era el jesuita de más alto rango en Argentina durante la dictadura militar encabezada por el general Jorge Videla (1976-1983).
Más tarde se convirtió en obispo y arzobispo de Buenos Aires. El Papa Juan Pablo II lo elevó al rango de cardenal en 2001.
Cuando la Junta Militar entregó el poder en 1983, el presidente debidamente electo Raúl Alfonsín creó una Comisión de la Verdad respecto a los delitos vinculados a la “Guerra Sucia”.
La junta militar había sido apoyada secretamente por Washington.
El Secretario de Estado norteamericano, Henry Kissinger tuvo un papel detrás de la escena en el golpe militar de 1976.
El lugarteniente de Kissinger en América Latina, William Rogers, le dijo dos días después del golpe de Estado que “tenemos que esperar una buena cantidad de represión, probablemente una buena cantidad de sangre, en la Argentina en poco tiempo“…. (National Security Archive, 23 de marzo de 2006)
“Operación Cóndor”Irónicamente, un importante juicio comenzó en Buenos Aires el 5 de marzo de 2013, una semana antes de la investidura cardenal Bergoglio como Pontífice. El juicio en curso en Buenos Aires busca: “considerar la totalidad de los crímenes cometidos bajo la Operación Cóndor, una campaña coordinada por varias dictaduras apoyadas por Estados Unidos en América Latina en las décadas de 1970 y 1980 para perseguir, torturar y asesinar a miles de opositores de esos regímenes”.Para más detalles, consulte Operation Condor: Trial On Latin American Rendition And Assassination Programde Carlos Osorio y Peter Kornbluh, 10 de marzo de 2013La junta militar encabezada por el general Jorge Videla fue responsable de asesinatos, incluyendo el de un sinnúmero de sacerdotes y monjas que se opusieron al dominio militar tras el golpe de estado del 24 de marzo de 1976, patrocinado por la CIA, que derrocó al gobierno de Isabel Perón:
“Videla fue uno de los generales culpables de crímenes contra los derechos humanos, incluyendo las “desapariciones”, torturas, asesinatos y secuestros. En 1985, Videla fue condenado a cadena perpetua en la prisión militar de Magdalena.”
Wall Street y la agenda económica neoliberal
Una de las citas clave de la junta militar (bajo instrucciones de Wall Street) fue el ministro de Economía, José Alfredo Martínez de Hoz,miembro de establishment comercial de la Argentina y gran amigo de David Rockefeller.El conjunto de medidas macro-económicas neoliberales medidas adoptadas por Martínez de Hoz eran una “copia” de las impuestas en octubre de 1973 en Chile por la dictadura de Pinochet bajo el asesoramiento de los “Chicago Boys”, tras el golpe de Estado del 11 de septiembre 1973 y la muerte del presidente Salvador Allende.Los salarios fueron congelados inmediatamente por decreto. El poder adquisitivo real se desplomó más de un 30 por ciento en los 3 meses siguientes al golpe militar del 24 de marzo de 1976. (Estimaciones del autor, Córdoba, Argentina, julio de 1976). La población argentina se empobreció.
Bajo el mando del Ministro de Economía José Alfredo Martínez de Hoz, la política monetaria del Banco Central fue determinada en mayor medida por Wall Street y el FMI. El mercado de divisas fue manipulado. El peso fue sobrevaluado deliberadamente para conducir a una deuda externa impagable. La economía nacional se precipitó a la bancarrota.
Wall Street y la jerarquía de la Iglesia Católica
Wall Street estaba firmemente detrás de la junta militar que libró la “Guerra Sucia” en su nombre. A su vez, la jerarquía de la Iglesia Católica desempeñó un papel central en el mantenimiento de la legitimidad de la Junta Militar.
La Orden de Jesús – que representaba la facción conservadora más influyente dentro de la Iglesia católica, estrechamente relacionada con las elites económicas de la Argentina – estaba firme detrás de la junta militar, en contra de los llamados “izquierdistas” del movimiento peronista.
“Guerra Sucia”: las acusaciones contra el cardenal Jorge Mario Bergoglio
En 2005, la abogada de derechos humanos Myriam Bregman presentó una querella criminal contra el cardenal Jorge Bergoglio, acusándolo de conspirar con la junta militar en 1976 en el secuestro de dos sacerdotes jesuitas.
Bergoglio, quien en ese momento era “Provincial” de la Compañía de Jesús, había ordenado a dos sacerdotes jesuitas “izquierdistas”, “terminar su trabajo pastoral” (es decir, que fueran despedidos) producto de las divisiones dentro de la Compañía de Jesús respecto al papel de la Iglesia Católica y sus relaciones con la Junta militar.
Condenar la dictadura militar (incluyendo las violaciones de derechos humanos) era un tabú dentro de la Iglesia Católica. Mientras que las altas esferas de la Iglesia apoyaban a la Junta militar, las bases de la Iglesia se opusieron firmemente a la imposición del régimen militar.
En 2010, sobrevivientes de la “guerra sucia”, acusaron al cardenal Jorge Bergoglio de complicidad en el secuestro de dos miembros de la Compañía de Jesús, Francisco Jalics y Orlando Yorio, (El Mundo, 8 de noviembre de 2010)
En el curso del juicio iniciado en 2005, “Bergoglio dos veces invocó su derecho en virtud de la legislación argentina de negarse a comparecer en audiencia pública, y cuando finalmente testificó en el año 2010, sus respuestas fueron evasivas”:
“Por lo menos dos casos involucran directamente a Bergoglio. Uno se relaciona con la tortura de dos de sus sacerdotes jesuitas – Orlando Yorio y Francisco Jalics – que fueron secuestrados en 1976 en los barrios pobres donde abogaban por la teología de la liberación. Yorio acusó a Bergoglio de haberlo efectivamente entregado a los escuadrones de la muerte… al negarse a decirle al régimen que apoyaba su labor. Jalics se negó a hablar de ello después de mudarse a reclusión en un monasterio alemán.” (Los Angeles Times, 1 de abril de 2005)
“Videla y otros conspiradores recibieron la bendición del arzobispo de Paraná, Adolfo Tortolo, quien también se desempeñó como vicario de las fuerzas armadas. El mismo día de la toma de posesión, los líderes militares tuvieron una larga reunión con los dirigentes de la Conferencia Episcopal. Al salir de esa reunión, el arzobispo Tortolo declaró que si bien “la iglesia tiene su misión específica… hay circunstancias en las que no pueden abstenerse de participar, incluso cuando se trata de problemas relacionados con el orden específico del Estado.” Él instó a los argentinos a “cooperar de manera positiva” con el nuevo gobierno“. (The Humanist.org, enero de 2011, énfasis añadido)
En una entrevista con El Sur, el general Jorge Videla, quien actualmente cumple una pena de cadena perpetua confirmó que:
“Mantuvo a la jerarquía católica del país informada sobre la política de su régimen de “desaparecer” a los opositores políticos, y que los líderes católicos ofrecieron consejos sobre cómo “manejar” dicha política.
Jorge Videla dijo que tuvo “muchas conversaciones” con el prelado de Argentina, el cardenal Raúl Francisco Primatesta, sobre la guerra sucia de su régimen contra activistas de izquierda. Dijo también que hubo conversaciones con otros obispos importantes de la Conferencia Episcopal Argentina, así como con el nuncio papal en el país en ese momento, Pío Laghi.
“Ellos nos aconsejan sobre la manera de hacer frente a la situación“, dijo Videla” (Tom Henningan, Former Argentinian dictator says he told Catholic Church of disappeared, Irish Times, 24 de julio de 2012, énfasis añadido)
La Iglesia Católica: Chile versus Argentina
Vale la pena señalar que, a raíz del golpe militar en Chile el 11 de septiembre de 1973, el cardenal de Santiago de Chile, Raúl Silva Henríquez, condenó abiertamente la junta militar encabezada por el general Augusto Pinochet. En marcado contraste con Argentina, esta postura de la jerarquía católica en Chile fue fundamental para frenar la ola de asesinatos políticos y violaciones de derechos humanos dirigidas contra partidarios de Salvador Allende y opositores al régimen militar.Si Jorge Mario Bergoglio hubiese adoptado una postura similar a la del Cardenal Raúl Silva Henríquez, miles de vidas se habrían salvado.
La “Operación Cóndor” y la Iglesia Católica
La elección del cardenal Bergoglio en el cónclave del Vaticano para servir como Papa Francisco I tendrá repercusiones inmediatas en el presente juicio contra la “Operación Cóndor” en Buenos Aires.
La Iglesia estuvo involucrada en el apoyo a la Junta Militar. Esto es algo que emergerá durante el curso de las actuaciones judiciales. Sin duda, habrá intentos para ocultar el papel de la jerarquía católica y del recién nombrado Papa Francisco I, quien se desempeñó como jefe de la orden jesuita en Argentina durante la dictadura militar.
Jorge Mario Bergoglio: ¿”El Papa de Washington en el Vaticano”?
La elección del Papa Francisco I tiene amplias implicaciones geopolíticas para toda la región de Latinoamérica.
En la década de 1970, Jorge Mario Bergoglio apoyó a una dictadura militar de patrocinio estadounidense.
La jerarquía católica en la Argentina apoyó al gobierno militar.
Los intereses de Wall Street se mantuvieron a través de la oficina de José Alfredo Martínez de Hoz en el Ministerio de Economía.
La Iglesia Católica en América Latina es políticamente influyente. También posee control sobre la opinión pública. Esto es conocido y comprendido por los arquitectos de política exterior estadounidense.
En América Latina, donde varios gobiernos están ahora desafiando la hegemonía de Estados Unidos, uno podría esperar – dada la trayectoria de Bergoglio – que el nuevo Pontífice Francisco I como líder de la Iglesia Católica, jugará de facto, un discreto rol político “encubierto” a nombre de Washington.
Con Jorge Bergoglio, el Papa Francisco I, en el Vaticano (que sirvió fielmente a los intereses estadounidenses en el apogeo del general Jorge Videla) la jerarquía de la Iglesia Católica en América Latina puede volver a ser efectivamente manipulada para socavar a los gobiernos “progresistas” (de izquierda), no sólo en la Argentina (respecto del gobierno de Cristina Kirchner), sino en toda la región, incluyendo Venezuela, Ecuador y Bolivia.
El restablecimiento de un “Papa pro-estadounidense” se produjo una semana después de la muerte del presidente Hugo Chávez.
¿El Papa de Washington y Wall Street en el Vaticano?
El Departamento de Estado norteamericano presiona rutinariamente a los miembros del Consejo de Seguridad con miras a influir en la votación relativa a las resoluciones del Consejo.
Operaciones encubiertas y campañas de propaganda estadounidenses se desarrollan rutinariamente con objeto de influir en las elecciones nacionales en diferentes países alrededor del mundo.
¿El gobierno estadounidense habrá intentado influir en la elección del nuevo pontífice? Jorge Mario Bergoglio era el candidato preferido por Washington.
¿Hubo presiones encubiertas ejercidas discretamente por Washington, dentro de la Iglesia Católica, directa o indirectamente, a los 115 cardenales que son miembros del cónclave del Vaticano, para llevar a la elección de un pontífice que fielmente sirve a los intereses de la política exterior estadounidense en América Latina?
Nota del Autor
Desde el comienzo del régimen militar en 1976, fui profesor visitante en el Instituto de Política Social de la Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Argentina. Mi principal objetivo de investigación en ese momento era investigar los efectos sociales de las letales reformas macroeconómicas aprobadas por la Junta Militar.
Impartí clases en la Universidad de Córdoba durante la primera oleada de asesinatos que también apunto a miembros del clero católico de base progresista.
La ciudad norteña industrial de Córdoba era el centro del movimiento de resistencia. Fui testigo de cómo la jerarquía católica activa y sistemáticamente apoyó a la junta militar, creando un clima de intimidación y temor en todo el país. El sentimiento general era en ese entonces que los argentinos habían sido traicionados por las altas esferas de la Iglesia Católica.
Tres años antes, al momento del golpe militar del 11 de septiembre de 1973 en Chile, que llevó al derrocamiento del gobierno de la Unidad Popular de Salvador Allende, era profesor visitante del Instituto de Economía de la Universidad Católica de Chile, en Santiago de Chile.
Inmediatamente después del golpe de Estado en Chile, fui testigo de cómo el cardenal de Santiago, Raúl Silva Henríquez, actuando a nombre de la Iglesia Católica, se enfrentó a la dictadura militar.
Michel Chossudovsky es autor galardonado, Profesor de Economía (Emérito) de la Universidad de Ottawa, Director del Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG), y Editor de globalresearch.ca. Es el autor de Globalization of Poverty and The New World Order (2003) y America’s “War on Terrorism” (2005). También es colaborador de la Enciclopedia Británica. Sus escritos publicados se encuentran en más de veinte idiomas.
John Brennan brings heavy baggage to his new job as CIA Director – legal as well as moral – arguably making it risky for him to travel to more than 150 countries that are party to the United Nations Convention Against Torture.New CIA Director John Brennan addresses officials at the Agency’s headquarters in Langley, Virginia. (Photo credit: CIA)
It must be hard for Brennan to recognize that he cannot land in Europe, for example, without fear of being arrested and arraigned for kidnapping (also known as “extraordinary rendition”) and torture (now antiseptically called “EIT” for “enhanced interrogation techniques,” which, by the way, is a direct translation of verschaerfte Vernehmungright out of the Gestapo handbook).
For a freshly confirmed CIA Director it is de rigueur to pay an early call on European counterparts. I remember preparing a briefing book for that purpose just before a new CIA Director named George H. W. Bush took off for the UK, Germany and France in the early spring of 1976. Unfortunately for Brennan, there may be complications to enjoying April in Paris – like a possible knock on the door from a French prosecutor and the gendarmes.
Given Brennan’s role as a senior CIA official during President George W. Bush’s “dark side” days of waterboarding detainees, renditioning suspects to Mideast torture centers and making up intelligence to invade Iraq, Brennan’s advisers are sure to remind him that he may be in as much jeopardy of being arrested as former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.
After leaving the Pentagon in late 2006, Rumsfeld had his own close call with Lady Justice. In October 2007, Rumsfeld was in an auditorium in Paris preparing to deliver a lecture when he learned that the Paris Prosecutor was mulling over what to do after being served a formal complaint against Rumsfeld for ordering and authorizing torture.
The charges against Rumsfeld were brought under the 1984 UN Convention Against Torture (CAT), ratified by both the United States and France. The complaint was brought in France under the concept of universal jurisdiction.
The criminal complaint stated that because the authorities in the United States and Iraq had failed to launch any independent investigation into the responsibility of Rumsfeld and other high-level U.S. officials for torture – despite a documented paper trail and government memos implicating them in direct as well as command responsibility for torture – it was the legal obligation of states such as France to take up the case. The complaint also noted that the U.S. had refused to join the International Criminal Court, which might have had more routine jurisdiction.
In an attempt to avoid a major diplomatic headache, U.S. embassy officers advised: “Run, Rummy, Run,” before the Paris authorities decided what to do. Rumsfeld went out a side door, slipped into the embassy, and then got out of Dodge tout suite.
Rumsfeld’s skedaddle from Paris thus spared him the possible humiliation that befell Gen. Augusto Pinochet, who had been head of Chile’s military dictatorship from 1973 to 1990. While on a trip to the United Kingdom in 1998, Pinochet was arrested on a Spanish judicial warrant and was held under house arrest until 2000. The Spanish judge cited the same principle of universal jurisdiction. Pinochet was freed only after the intervention of high-powered friends, including former President George H.W. Bush and former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger.
That was only the first of several times when European judges applied that principle, declaring themselves competent to judge crimes committed by former heads of state, despite local amnesty laws. If former heads of state are vulnerable, it seemed to follow that former defense secretaries and other senior subordinates must be as well.
If the Rumsfeld precedent were not enough to make Brennan think twice about travel to Europe, he has surely been told of the criminal complaints lodged in Switzerland (also a CAT signatory) against George W. Bush in early 2011. When the former president learned of it, he decided not to take any chances and abruptly nixed longstanding plans to address a Jewish charity dinner in Geneva on Feb. 12, 2011.
The Goods on Brennan
Brennan’s checkered past has been an open secret. On Dec. 5, 2005, after finishing a stint as acting director of the National Counterterrorism Center, Brennan told Margaret Warner of the NewsHour that “rendition” (also known as kidnapping) is “an absolutely vital tool … producing intelligence that has saved lives.” (In his Feb. 7, 2013, testimony to the Senate Intelligence Committee on his nomination to be CIA Director, Brennan backed off the “saved lives” claim, since the committee had just completed its own comprehensive study disproving it.)
On the NewsHour, Brennan described rendition as “the practice or the process of rendering somebody from one place to another place. It is moving them, and the U.S. Government will frequently facilitate that movement from one country to another.”
Brennan’s co-panelist, another former CIA operations officer, objected to turning prisoners over to foreign intelligence services, insisting that, “It would be far better if the United States retained control of that terror suspect and did the interrogation itself.”
This drew a sharp rejoinder from Brennan: “Quite frankly I think it’s rather arrogant to think that we are the best in every case in terms of eliciting information from terror suspects.” Right. In the decades since World War II, many “friendly” intelligence services have acquired a lot more experience with verschaerfte Vernehmungthan the CIA, though it often served as the tutor.
(The term verschaerfte Vernehmung was not only coined by the Nazis, but the techniques were indistinguishable from those used during the presidency of George W. Bush, according to a 2007 article in the Atlantic. The major difference, so far, is that after WWII the torturers were punished as war crimes, with the penalty often death by hanging.)
NewsHour’s Warner asked Brennan if the U.S. employs rendition “because we want another country to do the dirty work?” Brennan replied: “It’s rather arrogant to think that we’re the only country that respects human rights.”
A comprehensive study just published by the Open Society Justice Initiative reveals that, under President George W. Bush, Brennan and his counter-terrorist team suborned the officials of 54 other countries to cooperate in the rendition program, providing help of various kinds, including transiting their land, airports or airspace, or accepting secret prisons in their countries.
It is no secret that the purpose of “rendition” is to move detainees secretly to countries with experience/expertise in “enhanced interrogation techniques” or to the infamous CIA “black sites” abroad where waterboarding and other abuses took place. Such activities violate the Convention Against Torture and, often, national laws.
What is new is that some governments in both “old” and “new” Europe – a distinction that Donald Rumsfeld would make derisively against France and other parts of “old” Europe – are now showing a common commitment to justice by prosecuting former heads of their own intelligence services.
Italy’s former chief of military intelligence, Nicolo Pollari, just got ten years in prison for helping the CIA abduct Egyptian cleric Osama Hassan Mustafa Nasr (aka Abu Omar) from the streets of Milan in early 2003 and send him to Egypt for more “enhanced” interrogation.
More than two dozen Americans have been tried and convicted in absentia for this case of truly extraordinary rendition, in which they exhibited notoriously adolescent tradecraft. If any of them travel to Europe, they risk arrest. John Brennan should remember that highly embarrassing flap quite well, since it came on the eve of his appointment to head a newly created Terrorist Threat Integration Center.
And in “new” Europe, in January 2013, Zbigniew Siemiatkowski, former head of Poland’s secret service and former minister of internal affairs, was indicted for his role in cooperating with the CIA renditioners and torturers. Siemiatkowski facilitated CIA renditions and the establishment of a CIA “black prison” in Poland, where the U.S. arranged interrogation and torture of terrorist suspects snatched from their home countries.
It is no overstatement that for the first time since World War II, many foreign intelligence chiefs are likely to have very mixed reactions to being seen, even in Washington, with a freshly minted CIA Director with the heavy baggage that Brennan carries.
So where might these intelligence counterparts get together without too many risks. What about the Bahamas? It has signed CAT but has not yet ratified it. So, with adequate security forces deployed, there may be a measure of safety there. For the time being at least, Bahamas could offer one of the few feasible ways that Brennan would be able to schmooze with key foreign counterparts – perhaps by offering as a bonus a timeshare week there. A short flight for travelers from Washington, DC, Bahamas would have another cost-saving advantage in saving on jet fuel.
Things to Do at Home, Like Iran
Besides worries about arrest, Brennan has other compelling reasons to stay at home for a while. Iran’s nuclear program remains on the front burner as it has since early 2008 when the Director of National Intelligence revealed the National Intelligence Estimate completed in November 2007 concluding, unanimously and “with high confidence,” that Iran had stopped working on nuclear weaponization in 2003 and had not resumed that work – a judgment revalidated every year since by the DNI.
That assessment has not prevented neocons and their favorite media personalities from trying to make Iran’s nuclear program seem more menacing. On “Meet the Press” on Feb. 3, for example, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta was the subject of attempted mousetrapping by NBC’s Chuck Todd, who clearly was hoping Panetta could be maneuvered into contradicting the NIE.
It was awkward for Panetta, but – to his credit – rather than apologize when Todd pointed his finger accusing him of believing “the Iranians were not pursuing nuclear weapons,” Panetta held firm under the goading. Finally, after conferring with co-panelist Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman, Gen. Martin Dempsey, Panetta said, with some exasperation: “I – no, I can’t tell you because – I can’t tell you they’re in fact pursuing a weapon because that’s not what intelligence says we – we – we’re – they’re doing right now. …” (emphasis added)
John Brennan, when appearing before his Senate Intelligence Committee confirmation hearing on Feb. 7, chose to deviate from the 2007 NIE by including the following in his prepared written testimony: “And regimes in Tehran and Pyongyang remain bent on pursuing nuclear weapons and intercontinental ballistic missile delivery systems.” (emphasis added)
Never mind Brennan’s disingenuousness in conflating Iran with North Korea. The question is how could he diverge so markedly both from what Panetta said just four days before, as well as from the unanimous assessment of the entire U.S. intelligence community that Iran stopped working on a nuclear weapon in 2003 and has not resumed that work. In no way does that continuing assessment support his claim that Tehran remains “bent on pursuing nuclear weapons” and ICBMs to deliver them.
There are, of course, reasonable grounds to suspect that Iran might be seeking a capability that eventually would allow it to rapidly break out of Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) constraints on building a nuclear weapon. That, of course, is why U.S. intelligence is riveted on monitoring related activity in Iran, as are the UN inspectors in Iran.
But “bent on pursuing” ICBMs? Really? Iran has not flight-tested a ballistic missile with ranges in excess of its 2200-kilometer-range Sajjil MRBM. Nor has it launched a space rocket that might conceivably be a suitable model for an ICBM. Has Brennan found someone – perhaps an analyst left over from the notorious 2002 NIE on WMD in Iraq – to tell him the Iranians are testing ICBMs in their hardened underground sites?
I doubt that Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, who observed at close hand the concocting of fraudulent “intelligence” on Iraq, will cave in to the likes of Brennan “fixing” the intelligence on Iran. However, there is no word yet this year on when the DNI will present the annual worldwide threat briefing – traditionally given in sworn testimony to Congress in January or February.
So the battle is joined. Assuming Congress, in its wisdom, does not altogether cancel the worldwide threat briefing this year, and assuming I’m right about Clapper, Brennan has his work cut out for him in squaring that circle about how “bent” Iran seems to be on “pursuing nuclear weapons.”
A version of this article also appeared on Consortium News.
Ray McGovern works with Tell the Word, the publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in Washington, DC. During his career as a CIA analyst, he prepared and briefed the President's Daily Brief and chaired National Intelligence Estimates. He is a member of the Steering Group of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS).
New evidence continues to accumulate showing how Official Washington got key elements of two major presidential scandals of the Nixon and Reagan administrations wrong.
March 10, 2013 |
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A favorite saying of Official Washington is that “the cover-up is worse than the crime.” But that presupposes you accurately understand what the crime was. And, in the case of the two major U.S. government scandals of the last third of the Twentieth Century – Watergate and Iran-Contra – that doesn’t seem to be the case.
Indeed, newly disclosed documents have put old evidence into a sharply different light and suggest that history has substantially miswritten the two scandals by failing to understand that they actually were sequels to earlier scandals that were far worse. Watergate and Iran-Contra were, in part at least, extensions of the original crimes, which involved dirty dealings to secure the immense power of the presidency.
Shortly after Nixon took office in 1969, FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover informed him of the existence of the file containing national security wiretaps documenting how Nixon’s emissaries had gone behind President Lyndon Johnson’s back to convince the South Vietnamese government to boycott the Paris Peace Talks, which were close to ending the Vietnam War in fall 1968.In the case of Watergate – the foiled Republican break-in at the Democratic National Committee in June 1972 and Richard Nixon’s botched cover-up leading to his resignation in August 1974 – the evidence is now clear that Nixon created the Watergate burglars out of his panic that the Democrats might possess a file on his sabotage of Vietnam peace talks in 1968.
The disruption of Johnson’s peace talks then enabled Nixon to hang on for a narrow victory over Democrat Hubert Humphrey. However, as the new President was taking steps in 1969 to extend the war another four-plus years, he sensed the threat from the wiretap file and ordered two of his top aides, chief of staff H.R. “Bob” Haldeman and National Security Advisor Henry Kissinger, to locate it. But they couldn’t find the file.
We now know that was because President Johnson, who privately had called Nixon’s Vietnam actions “treason,” had ordered the file removed from the White House by his national security aide Walt Rostow.
Rostow labeled the file “The ‘X’ Envelope” and kept it in his possession, although having left government, he had no legal right to possess the highly classified documents, many of which were stamped “Top Secret.” Johnson had instructed Rostow to retain the papers as long as he, Johnson, was alive and then afterwards to decide what to do with them.
Nixon, however, had no idea that Johnson and Rostow had taken the missing file or, indeed, who might possess it. Normally, national security documents are passed from the outgoing President to the incoming President to maintain continuity in government.
But Haldeman and Kissinger had come up empty in their search. They were only able to recreate the file’s contents, which included incriminating conversations between Nixon’s emissaries and South Vietnamese officials regarding Nixon’s promise to get them a better deal if they helped him torpedo Johnson’s peace talks.
So, the missing file remained a troubling mystery inside Nixon’s White House, but Nixon still lived up to his pre-election agreement with South Vietnamese President Nguyen van Thieu to extend U.S. military participation in the war with the goal of getting the South Vietnamese a better outcome than they would have received from Johnson in 1968.
Nixon not only continued the Vietnam War, which had already claimed more than 30,000 American lives and an estimated one million Vietnamese, but he expanded it, with intensified bombing campaigns and a U.S. incursion into Cambodia. At home, the war was bitterly dividing the nation with a massive anti-war movement and an angry backlash from war supporters.
Court Delving Into Latin American Terrorism Effort
Posted on Mar 7, 2013
A trial under way in Argentina is expected to reveal new details about how Latin American countries coordinated with one another in the 1970s and ’80s to kill political dissidents in a campaign known as “Operation Condor.”
Military dictatorships in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Paraguay, Peru and Uruguay worked together to track down, kidnap and kill people they labeled as terrorists: left-wing activists, labor organizers, students, priests, journalists, guerrilla fighters and their families. “The campaign was launched by the Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet, and evidence shows the CIA and former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger were complicit from its outset,” “Democracy Now!” reports.
John Dinges, author of “The Condor Years: How Pinochet and His Allies Brought Terrorism to Three Continents,” discusses the right-wing crusade:
“In the 1970s, Pinochet convinced the other countries—Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina, Bolivia and Paraguay—to go along with him, with the argument that there are these guerrilla operations that are a threat to all of them,” he explains. “And there was indeed a guerrilla operation, called the Revolutionary Coordinating Junta, of people who were taking up arms against these governments. And the idea was that they would cooperate in tracking these people down. And they did.”
—Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.Democracy Now:
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French President François Hollande was awarded UNESCO’s Félix Houphouët-Boigny Peace Prize for “valuable contribution to peace and stability in Africa” according to the United Nations website: www.un.org. Former Mozambique President Joaquim Chissano, chaired the Jury of the Félix Houphouët-Boigny Peace Prize stated that “After analyzing the global situation, it is Africa that held the attention of the Jury with the various threats affecting the continent” with instability affecting Northern Mali by various Al-Qaeda elements created by the west, gave France an opportunity to invade the former colony. “Having assessed the dangers and the repercussions of the situation on Africa, and on Mali in particular, as well as on the rest of the world, the Jury appreciated the solidarity shown by France to the peoples of Africa.” Does appreciating “the solidarity” shown by France mean killing hundreds of Malian people since the invasion? France has killed many civilians that includes children. The human rights organization Amnesty International has accused French forces of killing civilians since there was “evidence that at least five civilians, including three children, were killed in an airstrike.” UNESCO’s Félix Houphouët-Boigny Peace Prize is similar to the Nobel Peace Prize whose past winners were known for war crimes.
Former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, the notorious war criminal responsible for an estimated 3 to 4 million deaths during the Vietnam War including the bombing of Cambodia was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1973. He was responsible for the overthrow of President Salvador Allende of Chile and installed Fascist General Augusto Pinochet which created a “Police State” among the Chilean population. Kissinger also was instrumental in giving support to one of the worst dictatorships in human history, the Khmer Rouge under Pol Pot. Henry Kissinger committed many other crimes including genocide under both Presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford as an “advisor” under the NSA (National Security Agency) and as Secretary of State. President Barack Obama was also awarded the Nobel Peace Prize although he was in office less than a year. Obama has expanded Drone wars in Pakistan and Yemen, opened several US military bases in Colombia and one in Chile, he ordered a war in Libya without congressional approval, maintained a military presence in Iraq and escalated the war in Afghanistan. Obama’s record of peace on the international level is questionable. Obama said that he was “Surprised” and “deeply humbled” after he received the award. He said the Nobel Peace Prize is a “Call to Action”, meaning more war. It is fair to say that the US government has been involved in many “actions” across the world, whether militarily or economically that has done more harm than good.
The Nobel Peace Prize has also awarded three Israeli Prime ministers that have systematically committed numerous crimes against Palestinians that includes Menachem Begin in 1978, Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres in 1994. UNESCO’s Félix Houphouët-Boigny Peace Prize also awarded Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres in 1993 along with Yasser Arafat of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) during the Oslo I Accord as an attempt by both sides to set up a roadmap to a resolution to end the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. The Oslo Accords actually failed since Israel never ended its occupation and continued to build “Israeli Settlements.”
The Félix Houphouët-Boigny Peace Prize in 1994 and the Nobel Prize in 2002 were both awarded to former US President Jimmy Carter. Carter supported the dictatorship of the Shah of Iran and The Somoza dictatorship of Nicaragua. He also supported Indonesia’s Suharto militarily and diplomatically during the invasion and occupation of East Timor. Under President Carter, US Military Aid to Suharto’s Military increased under Carter causing the deaths of over 200, 000 East Timorese. UNESCO’s Félix Houphouët-Boigny Peace Prize and the Nobel Peace Prize are in fact an insult to “World Peace”. UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) and the Nobel Peace Prize have both proved that “Western political influence” dominate both prizes.
Both awards for “Peace” are just a propaganda tool for Western Powers to wage war to establish peace. The war on Mali will expand under Hollande since his new peace award would allow him and other key players such as AFRICOM to wage war to establish peace. George Orwell was correct when he wrote in his classic book “1984” that “War is Peace, Freedom is Slavery and Ignorance is Strength.” Mali will see more war because peace is on the agenda, right?
About the author:Timothy Alexander Guzman is an independent researcher and writer with a focus on political, economic, media and historical spheres. He has been published in Global Research, The Progressive Mind, European Union Examiner, News Beacon Ireland, WhatReallyHappened.com, EIN News and a number of other alternative news sites. He is a graduate of Hunter College in New York City.
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We are bring to the consideration of our readers this incisive and carefully formulated analysis by Canada’s renowned philosopher Professor John McMurtry.
The complete text published by the Journal of 9/11 Studies can be downloaded in pdf
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I was sceptical of the 9-11 event from the first time I saw it on television. It was on every major network within minutes. All the guilty partieswere declared before any evidencewas shown.The first questions of any criminal investigation were erased. Who had the most compelling motives for the event? Who had the means to turn two central iconic buildings in New York into a pile of steel and a cloud of dust in seconds?[i]
Other questions soon arose in the aftermath. Why was all the evidence at the crime scenes removed or confiscated?
Who was behind the continuous false information and non-stop repetition of “foreign/Arab terrorists”when no proof of guilt existed? Who was blocking all independent inquiry?
Even 11 years on these questions are still not answered.
But those immediately named guilty without any forensic proof certainly fitted the need for a plausible Enemy now that the “threat of the Soviet Union” and “communist world rule” were dead. How else could the billion-dollar-a-day military be justified with no peace dividend amidst a corporately hollowed-out U.S. economy entering its long-term slide?While all the media and most of the people asserted the official 9-11 conspiracy theory as given fact, not all did.
A Bay Street broker with whom I was improbably discussing the event in Cuba had no problem recognising the value meaning. When I asked what he thought about the official conspiracy theory, he was frank:
“You can call it what you want, but America needs a war to pull the people together and expand into new resource rich areas. That what it has always done from Mexico on. And that is what it needs now”. When I wondered why none in the know said so, he smirked: “It would be impolite”, adding, “It affects the entire future prosperity of America and the West”. And all the deaths? “It had to be done –far less than it could have been”. The 19 Arabs with box-cutters reducing the World Trade Center buildings to powde