Monday, July 28, 2008

Think Tanks to Holding Tanks, Board Rooms to Gallows - Part 1

by Detain This

The perversion and demise of the U.S. Republic and the global shakedown of U.S.- and Israeli-chosen enemies would not be possible without the neocon-Likudnik empire’s Propaganda Ministry.

This three-part document makes a layman’s case against the members thereof — most notably, News Corporation, The Associated Press, and the various ideological agents that are keeping media and state incestuously bonded and heading down the road to fascist self-destruction and global immolation.

Bite the Lamb; Cry Wolf

On September 6, 2007, Israeli Air Forces (IAF) jets violated Syrian airspace and destroyed a construction site which was alleged by Israeli officials to have been a nuclear facility intended for weaponization. The evidence accompanying the Israeli allegations, which was not officially put forward until months later, showed no wrongdoing on Syria’s part. That any mainstream news outlet would report the Israeli accusations without a healthy dose of skepticism would be a travesty.

But that’s just what happened: corporate news media practically parroted the U.S.-corroborated Israeli claims and omitted the exclusive criminality on the part of the accusers. The IAF raid was an act of aggressive war in gross violation of international law, and U.S. officials colluded with the Israelis; but you could go blind trying to find one mainstream news report wherein Syria’s defensive disposition or even its presumed innocence is implied, much less stated as fact.

Damascus is in good standing with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and has not violated the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT) — an agreement the nuclear-armed state of Israel has refused to enter, and the most indomitably-nuclear USA has serially ignored. Still, the plot has been spun around the Israeli- and U.S.-contrived threat of a nuclear-armed Syria.

How is that possible?

Nazi-German war criminal and propaganda guru, Joseph Goebbels, is often quoted on how leaders convince their subjects to believe the biggest lies in favor of the state. His instructions on the use of entertainment via theater and wireless media, to distract the captive audience from the dark cynicism of the regime’s desired ends — and techniques like repetition and omission for brainwashing purposes — have not been lost on the propagandists of the neocon-Likudnik empire.

Nine months before the Israeli-U.S. war crime against Syria, a rare news report surfaced about a campaign aimed at demonizing and overthrowing the Syrian and Iranian regimes (boldness mine):

For nearly a year, a select group of US officials has been quietly coordinating actions to counter the looming threat of a nuclear-armed Iran, including increasing the military capabilities of Arab allies such as Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Bahrain.

The group, known as the Iran Syria Policy and Operations Group, or ISOG, is also coordinating a host of other actions, which include covert assistance to Iranian dissidents and building international outrage toward Iran by publicizing its alleged role in a 1994 terrorist attack in Argentina, according to interviews with half a dozen White House, Pentagon, and State Department officials who are involved in the group’s work. [1]

Government officials do not reveal illicit government plans to reporters without a hitch; hence the editor’s apple-polishing sterilization of the language. Notice that the so-called threat of a nuclear Iran and Iranian culpability in the Argentina attack are stated as facts, while the dubious legal status of the operation is omitted.

Those U.S. officials would have insisted on a “deep background” interview, or no story at all, if not for the editor’s assurance that the final draft would reflect the U.S. venture as a benign and necessary response to rogue actions of the Iranian and Syria governments. This is one way in which news media lie for the government with subtlety and plausible deniability while appearing to challenge power.

Fraudulent chicken-hawking for violent regime-change in Tehran and Damascus is nothing new for Michael Ledeen and his neocon contemporaries. One week after the above report, the co-architect of pre-invasion lies about Iraq WMDs could be found trumpeting the ISOG battle call:

[T]he only way to demonstrate a will to win is to go after the Iranians and the Syrians … God knows the evidence of Syrian involvement is overwhelming, and the latest information reportedly shows they are on both sides of the Sunni/Shiite divide. …

If we do not tackle Syria, we will simply provide the terrorists with more targets. If we do go after them, we may yet win this thing. As luck would have it, this is the ideal moment to go after the Iranians, since their supreme leader, Ali Khamenei, is either dead or dying, and a vicious internal power struggle is under way in Tehran.

We should propose a better solution to the Iranian people: revolution, leading to their freedom. That would require the president and the secretary of State to call for regime change in Iran and Syria, something from which they have always retreated in the past. But if we want to win, that’s the first step. Anybody ready? [2]

One columnist, constantly spewing false and criminally-subversive filth, isn’t enough to affect mass sentiment. But, if enough Michael Ledeen’s spew their lies and conjecture via a substantial array of media — regularly, consistently, and over a duration — a sufficient portion of the audience will eventually, if unwittingly, accept the insanity as normalcy.

Thus, a dumbed-down (mainstream) mindset is incubated and the illegal wars on Afghanistan, Iraq, and Iran are easily sold.

[Source: bravenewfilms]

The efforts of ISOG, Ledeen, et al., have successfully passed through Congress numerous times over the past few years. The latest such effort is — surprise! — House Resolution 385: “Condemning the Attack on the AMIA Jewish Community Center in Buenos Aires, Argentine, in July 1994 and for other purposes, before the US House of Representatives, July 15, 2008.”

Luckily, some U.S. officials actually know what’s up, or at least care to speak out. Congressman Ron Paul warns that the neocon regime-change fanatics are ”using a crime to justify a war,” and as usual, he is right.

Indeed, the natural complement to the repetition of big lies is the omission of even bigger truths.

Around the same time that ISOG was reported to have intensified its campaign against Syria and Iran (early-2006), ISOG member and Iran-Contra pal of Ledeen’s — Elliot Abrams — was planning his own shakedown operation in the Israeli-Occupied Territories of Palestine: uncivil war.

The plan, which employed a mercenary militia loosely connected to Palestinian minority party, Fatah, was to overtake Gaza and overthrow the newly-elected Parliamentary majority party, Hamas. (Neocon-Likudniks won’t put up with the self-determination of those who resist their ethnic cleansing of them.)

Curiously enough, funding, training, and safe haven toward what Abrams termed a “hard coup” were provided by the U.S. and Israeli governments and some of the same ”Arab allies” mentioned in the above report on the ISOG’s campaign against Iran and Syria.

By the time the Boston Globe ”covered” ISOG’s treachery, Abrams’ conspiracy had already been leaked to European and Middle Eastern news media and governments. By Winter 2006–7, the leaked story made its way to independent media outlets on the Internet. By June ‘07, Hamas had put down the Abrams coup in street battles against the Fatah-linked mercenaries (in part, because they’d caught word of it).

Very few non-Ministry experts, like Nir Rosen, were able to relate this truthful version of the events in the mainstream, but as marginalized voices. Rosen’s interview with CNN’s John Roberts only appears on the Internet in transcript form. As is typically the case, the story that did make the mainstream was a total inversion of reality in favor of the state criminals. [3]

Reuters’ and AP’s reports on this subject read like U.S. and Israeli government press releases. As with the Israeli aggression against Syria, the victims are blamed. Instead of U.S. and Israeli entities committing war crimes, Hamas — and by extension, all Palestinians who resist the Israeli occupation of their land by supporting Hamas and electing them to power — are deemed militant insurrectionists and conspirators. The illicit state acts are omitted altogether.

A complete fantasy has been reported over and over in thousands of newspapers and other news media since. It goes roughly thus: ”The violent, anti-Israel, Islamist (AP: “Islamic”) Hamas plotted and carried out a coup against Israel’s partner in peace, pro-U.S. moderate Fatah. . . [Therefore] Israel responded by blockading Gaza in an effort to make the Palestinian people rise up and toss out Hamas, which is dedicated to the violent destruction of the Jewish state.”

What is most heinously omitted is the Israeli and U.S. destruction of the state-less Palestinian people they are occupying. Absent are the Israeli kidnappings and assassinations of Hamas legislators, their family members, and their supporters since the party was elected to power.

Omitted also are the crippling sanctions that have been in place since then, and the supreme Israeli war crimes, like the destruction of Gaza’s only power plant and vital civilian infrastructure the previous Summer. News media would have us believe that the illegal blockade began after Hamas “staged a bloody, violent, brown-skinned, Islamist coup.”

As a result of the repetitions of lies and omissions of truths, all Palestinians who work for Hamas, support Hamas, or refuse to collaborate with the Fatah junta or the Israeli occupiers in the West Bank, are seen as being worthy of the collective punishment they receive at the hands of the U.S., Israeli, and E.U. governments.

These conspiracies against Syria, Iran, Iraq, and the Palestinians take root in neocon-Likudnik policy papers penned for U.S. and Israeli leaders like Benyamin Netanyahu, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush; conceived by neocons like Richard Perle, Meyrav and David Wurmser, Paul Wolfowitz, and Lewis Libby; peddled by neocons like Ledeen, Charles Krauthammer, and Bill Kristol on Fox News and in print media; and implemented as U.S. policy and legislation by neocons like Abrams, Gary Ackerman, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, and Joe Lieberman.

All of them should be held accountable for their willing participation in these schemes, which have involved aggressive war and collective economic punishment against innocent civilian populations.

A Precedent

During the Nüremberg Trials after WWII, Nazi German politicians, media moguls, bankers, arms makers, ideologues, and other ranking arms of the state were charged and sentenced for crimes against humanity, war crimes, and crimes against peace for inciting, committing, and conspiring to commit those acts of aggression.

Among the exhibits entered as evidence against the defendants were public statements similar to the type made by Ledeen: the kind that discount potential genocides and economic disasters, while encouraging insurrection and perpetual war — all semantically smoke-screened as noble acts of liberation.

Other statements were more explicit and nakedly asserted, along the lines of what U.S. mainstream news media are inciting today: state-sponsored criminal acts of terror, aggressive war, and insurrection in Iran, for instance.

[Source: irancoverage]

Ideologues of the neocon-Likudnik empire follow the repetition-omission principle religiously. One prime example is their favorite fear-mongering fallacy that says Iran is Nazi Germany and President Ahmadinejad is Hitler.

Of course, Iran is neither a regional military-superpower nor an occupier of foreign lands, while the neocon-Likudnik empire is even more aggressive and more militarily dominant than the Third Reich ever was. But that aside, there are, in fact, striking parallels between Nazi treatment of their chosen enemies and the U.S. and allied approaches to theirs.

Nazi ideologues and news publishers alike portrayed certain ethnic, religious, and political groups in ways similar to the way Arabs, Muslims, and Persians are portrayed today by the neocon Ministry. And like the neocon-Likudnik empire, the Reich’s blamed such groups for all “attacks on the homeland.”

Almost immediately after the attacks on the World Trade Center towers on September 11, 2001, Arab- and Muslim-demonizing propaganda permeated the airwaves. One particularly conniving and hideous concoction involved footage of Palestinians dancing joyously in the streets. But it was a fraud: the celebration shown was taken from footage of something from several years earlier. The real dancing celebration involved Israeli covert agents who were also filming the event as it unfolded.

This false and demonizing propaganda is the kind Nazi propagandists were punished for.

[Source: Ryantineocons]

Why is the story of Israel spying on the United States NOT on the evening news? Well, it actually was, but was quickly pulled by the news outlet that ran the story (Fox!) as a result of pressure from the attack dogs of the Israel Lobby.

Neocon ideologists like Daniel Pipes, Brigitte Gabriel, Steve Emerson, and Andrew Bostom make comfortable livings as marginalizers and dehumanizers for that Lobby. Their job is to make people believe that Israel is not the most prolific terrorist state, and that the U.S. government is not the biggest sponsor of Israeli and other international terror entities.

Their craft boils down to dissent-crushing guilt projection.

A favorite pastime for these bigoted pseudo-scholars is blackmailing so-called moderate Muslims using vitriol against so-called extremist, Islamist, or terrorist Muslims — holding all Muslims (and the non-Muslims who defend them) accountable for the actions of a few.

“If you’re not speaking out, you’re aiding the Islamofascists,” to paraphrase the erstwhile-Lebanese Gabriel, who has had no trouble with Israel’s carpet-bombings and occupation of her native country all her life.

“Western European societies are unprepared for the massive immigration of brown-skinned peoples cooking strange foods and maintaining different standards of hygiene. All immigrants bring exotic customs and attitudes, but Muslim customs are more troublesome than most.” — Daniel Pipes, quoted in Le Monde Diplomatique, July 2003.

These Arabists [sic], orientalists [sic], Middle East [sic] experts, and terrorism [sic] experts claim, either baselessly or according to rigged polls, that a certain percentage of Muslims in the world are extremists, and that thus, tens of millions of Islamofascists [sic] are out there somewhere — ESPECIALLY IN THE UNITED STATES! — therefore, we better heed their counsel. Which requires their captive audience to put pressure on local governments to prevent new mosque construction in their towns and to shut down existing ones. College professors must be reported to law enforcement and the dean if they disagree with the government’s so-called war on terror. And if they don’t comply, the educators must be forced to resign or be fired.

Dark Age justice from those claiming to be on the ”civilized” side of their fantastic Clash.

These xenophobic charlatans baselessly claim that there are Hamas, Hezbullah, and Al-Qaeda “sleeper cells” in the United States. But to this day, the only cells shown to exist are the ones which mostly Arabs and Muslims are stuffed into without formal charges or due process. Many violent and inhuman activities transpire in and around those cells, but precious little of it involves sleep.

Most of these agents of inhumanity have been exposed and discredited more than once. Still, corporate media and news agencies rely heavily on them for TV ratings and newspaper and periodical readership. Again: If enough of them are given air time to spew their lies and conjecture via a substantial array of media — regularly, consistently, and over a duration — a sufficient portion of the audience will eventually accept the inhumanity as necessary or even noble.

Thanks mostly to the dehumanizers and their partners in news media, the Bush Administration and the Pentagon have gotten away with this and this, for example.

Like that of today’s ideologists, Nazis Alfred Rosenberg’s and Julius Streicher’s demonizing and dehumanizing propaganda helped to convince the audience that anyone or any group deemed as a threat to the Third Reich deserved tyranny and death.

For their false condemnation and collective punishment of their chosen enemies, Nazi Ministry figures were convicted of crimes against humanity. For similar offenses, neocon-Likudnik ministers have received a pass (so far).

Goddamn Pieces of Paper

Also entered as evidence at Nüremberg were violations of the post-WWI Versailles Treaty: a one-sided affair conceived by the “victors” and meant to humiliate the nation of Germany, blame it for the war, and keep its foreign-occupied population from self-determination or a healthy, competing economy. Any proud and self-respecting people would have defied such a tyrannical mandate.

Unfortunately for the German people, from their radicalized masses arose the most undesirable leadership, whose belligerent nature only lent credence to the ideological demons hyperbolized by FDR & Co. But if the Germans violated Versailles out of self-preservation, the Allied powers did much worse out of sadistic self-enrichment and the necessity of projecting their own guilt.

Which brings up another good comparison between USA versus Germany and USA versus Iran: the illegitimacy of the international mandates cited as justifications for preemption, the rank hypocrisy of prosecuting them unilaterally, and the disastrous effects those aggressive measures have on civilians.

Sanctions against Iran are legally baseless but for conjured neocon fear-mongering in the media and strong-arming in the U.N. The United States is perhaps the worst violator of the NPT, yet the neocon-Likudnik empire has convinced the world, through false propaganda, that Iran is.

Iran has been accused by some U.S. leaders of providing aid to those who have killed “hundreds of our brave men and women.” Yet in Iraq, the U.S. and allies are known to have killed more than a million non-combatants and caused millions more to be refugees, and U.S.-backed mercenary armies operate inside Iran, along its Iraqi and Pakistani borders, committing acts of terror and war.

You may have noticed that mainstream news reports never mention the U.S.-Iranian Algiers Accords, or even the U.S. Constitution, in the context of current U.S. build-up of aggressive war on Iran.

Signed in January 1981 by the United States and Iran, the Accords prohibit political and military intervention in Iranian affairs by the United States. The U.S. Constitution states that such binding agreements not violating the spirit of the Constitution itself are to be treated as a constitutional mandate. Every U.S.-involved sanction, asset-freeze, and embargo against Iran, and every U.S. dollar and man-hour spent in support of Iranian opposition groups, should be prosecuted as a violation thereof.

The Mujahedeen-e Khalq (MeK) is listed as a foreign terrorist organization by the U.S. State Department. Its members live in, and operate out of, Camp Ashraf, Iraq, under U.S. and ”Coalition” military protection. Its administrative headquarters are located in London, under the name NCRI (National Council of Resistance of Iran). This much has been revealed in some mainstream news media.

But the so-called Iranian dissident group has also received hundreds of millions of U.S.-taxpayer dollars for its operations inside Iraq and Iran and in exile over the past few years, as well as secure training grounds in the United States. Illicit only begins to describe the nature of these acts; yet, barely a handful of conscientious investigative journalists and credible military- and foreign-affairs experts have reported on them.

[Source: artbell]

Painful Parallels

The Allied powers mindfully committed far more atrocities, against non-combatants, than any other party of either world war. They violated not only Versailles, but many other international agreements including Wilson’s 14 Points, the Hague Regulations of 1907, and the post-war precedents set at Nüremberg for which the Nazis were condemned and punished.

Allied malfeasance was rampant. Up to a point during WWII, U.S. and international bankers, politicians, and enterprising corporatists, including President Bush’s grandfather, were financing and profiteering off both sides, and generally rigging the apparatus quite handily.

How did those agents of empire get away with it? Well, for obvious starters, the three main so-called victors of WWII — the USA, Great Britain, and Russia — comprised the panel of judges, thanks to their self-granted infallibility (UN veto power, ultimately) by way of being “the winners.” We all know that saying about victors and spoils. And besides, who’s going to challenge the bullies when they have all the wherewithal and they’re all on the same side?

But how was this U.S. and Allied exceptionalism and legal immunity justified with the real world? The same way the initiation of those wars were made possible: Absolutist Propaganda.

During the build up to war in Europe, U.S. and Allied news media hyped Adolf Hitler’s extreme rhetoric and Germany’s violations of treaties and such, while omitting the more numerous violations by the FDR (and Truman) Administration. Allied savagery in the form of sanctions, embargoes, blockades, and boycotts were easily packaged as a credible and lawful means of enforcing ill-conceived, pro-allied mandates like Versailles, and ”reining in the Third Reich.” (Sound familiar?)

The tens of millions of non-combatants massacred and starved to death by the Allied powers were not newsworthy during the war; nor were their murders prosecutable afterward. The U.S. and its allies were fighting evil, spreading freedom, and saving the world; or at least that was the predominant message over the airwaves and front pages of most of the world’s media. Nagasaki, Hiroshima, and Dresden didn’t happen.

The invasion and occupation of Iraq and the ongoing shakedown of Iran have been sold even more prolifically. The U.S. government, during George W. Bush’s second term alone, has spent hundreds of millions in U.S.-taxpayer dollars on insurrection and propaganda operations overseas.

The Third Reich’s propaganda operations were nasty, for sure; but they were only effective within a regional radius, at best. Neocon apologists would rather you not know that the Angelic FDR or the Noble Wilson or the Merciful Lincoln shut down newspapers and incarcerated journalists, intellectual dissidents and in the rarest cases, politicians, that even-handed coverage of “the noble effort” were deemed unpatriotic and treasonable, and that Japanese-Americans were kidnapped and forced into “internment camps” by the FDR regime. (And if these things are discussed as facts, they are used as proof that “even our most lionized leaders did it, so what’s the big fuss? It’s a ‘necessary evil’ for our own good!”)

And never mind the ridiculously contradictory triad of Allied leaders. The only genocidal tyrants were Hitler and Mussolini. Oh yeah, and Stalin. But he was our tyrant. He was always reacting to the aggression of others — to the tune of tens of millions murdered. Just like Israel is “our best ally in the war on terror” and is always reacting to the aggression from that army-less existential threat called the Palestinians — to the tune of a 60-year, genocidal ethnic cleansing. Just like the Jewish [sic] state and the House of Saud are our greatest partners in “free trade” and “national defense” in the Middle East — to the tune of at least $5 billion per year and the looming vengeance of millions of the region’s oppressed.

Nor will corporate media even hint at the parallels between: 1) the Russian and German military occupations in Europe and 2) the U.S. and Israeli regimes operating within the Israeli-Occupied Territories of Palestine (IOPTs) and Iraq.

But are prison camps not being operated, wherein detainees are held without charges or due process, tortured, and murdered? Are journalists and cameramen not being unlawfully detained, beaten, and killed by occupation forces? Are major news centers like Al-Jazeera, as well as local press offices, not being raided and shut down? Are U.S. occupation forces not writing self-lauding pieces and paying Iraqi newspapers to publish them as news reports? Are hotels where dozens of journalists stay not being shelled?

Are occupied people not collectively punished for lawfully resisting the occupation and ethnic cleansing, or for simply being? Are the houses of the occupied people not being demolished to pay the penance for their relatives’ alleged crimes, or to make way for racial colonies?

Are U.S. attorneys general and other government officials not perverting the rule of law to justify these acts and immunize themselves and their cronies from future prosecution (thus admitting guilt)?

Do these and all other such acts on the part of the indomitable occupiers not constitute war crimes?

Of course not. The global policemen are always right, and their inconceivable policies are always justified, because they were fighting the evil terrorists and their evil ideologies. At least, that’s what they would have mainstream society believe.

But who are “they” and how do they do it?

Part Two

[3] The conspiracy was actually laid out in unprecedented detail by the respectable Vanity Fair, but was released a year late and under the byline of a reporter whose otherwise high career marks were lowered by his being duped by the Ahmed Chalabi scam a few years earlier. In this case, the Ministry tweaked both the flow of information and the perception of verity.


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