Selected Readings from a Friday night in The Empire
featuring James Bamford on John Rendon, Kurt Nimmo on Hugo Chavez and the CIA, and John Pilger on Latin America
By Winter Patriot on 11/19/2005, 2:41am PT  

Guest blogged by Winter Patriot

There's a ton of important new material on the blog at the moment and I wouldn't want to distract you from it. But on the other hand I do want to share some of what I've been reading this evening, for those who are interested...

James Bamford's newest monsterpiece provides a quietly horrifying glimpse of a man who must certainly rank among the most brilliant and the most twisted of them all. The Man Who Sold The War: John Rendon, Bush's general in the propaganda war is a long read but a good one. I can't do it justice with just a quote or two, but here's a sample to get you started:

The road to war in Iraq led through many unlikely places. One of them was a chic hotel nestled among the strip bars and brothels that cater to foreigners in the town of Pattaya, on the Gulf of Thailand.

On December 17th, 2001, in a small room within the sound of the crashing tide, a CIA officer attached metal electrodes to the ring and index fingers of a man sitting pensively in a padded chair. The officer then stretched a black rubber tube, pleated like an accordion, around the man's chest and another across his abdomen. Finally, he slipped a thick cuff over the man's brachial artery, on the inside of his upper arm.

Strapped to the polygraph machine was Adnan Ihsan Saeed al-Haideri, a forty-three-year-old Iraqi who had fled his homeland in Kurdistan and was now determined to bring down Saddam Hussein. For hours, as thin mechanical styluses traced black lines on rolling graph paper, al-Haideri laid out an explosive tale. Answering yes and no to a series of questions, he insisted repeatedly that he was a civil engineer who had helped Saddam's men to secretly bury tons of biological, chemical and nuclear weapons. The illegal arms, according to al-Haideri, were buried in subterranean wells, hidden in private villas, even stashed beneath the Saddam Hussein Hospital, the largest medical facility in Baghdad.

It was damning stuff --- just the kind of evidence the Bush administration was looking for. If the charges were true, they would offer the White House a compelling reason to invade Iraq and depose Saddam. That's why the Pentagon had flown a CIA polygraph expert to Pattaya: to question al-Haideri and confirm, once and for all, that Saddam was secretly stockpiling weapons of mass destruction.

There was only one problem: It was all a lie.

Read more and see how the lie told by Adnan Ihsan Saeed al-Haideri was used to "justify" the "war", even though it was known to be false, how John Rendon and his consulting company have earned millions of dollars fabricating and spreading this lie and many similar lies, creating so-called justification upon which wars have been waged, and many lives have been destroyed, and much money has been made, often by brilliant and twisted men...

... who somehow convince themselves that all the horrible things they have done --- to Americans as well as foreigners --- is ok. How do they do that? That's a question that I've never been able to answer: How do these guys convince themselves that telling --- or worse yet, fabricating --- lies to start wars is anything other than pure evil??

Rendon insists that the work he does is for the good of all Americans. "For us, it's a question of patriotism," he says. "It's not a question of politics, and that's an important distinction. I feel very strongly about that personally. If brave men and women are going to be put in harm's way, they deserve support."

Bamford points out the contradiction, mildly in my rash opinion, but he also gives us a look at the future:

As the war in Iraq has spiraled out of control, the Bush administration's covert propaganda campaign has intensified. According to a secret Pentagon report personally approved by Rumsfeld in October 2003 and obtained by Rolling Stone, the Strategic Command is authorized to engage in "military deception" --- defined as "presenting false information, images or statements." The seventy-four-page document, titled "Information Operations Roadmap," also calls for psychological operations to be launched over radio, television, cell phones and "emerging technologies" such as the Internet. In addition to being classified secret, the road map is also stamped noforn, meaning it cannot be shared even with our allies.
Rendon is already thinking ahead. Last year, he attended a conference on information operations in London, where he offered an assessment on the Pentagon's efforts to manipulate the media. According to those present, Rendon applauded the practice of embedding journalists with American forces. "He said the embedded idea was great," says an Air Force colonel who attended the talk. "It worked as they had found in the test. It was the war version of reality television, and for the most part they did not lose control of the story." But Rendon also cautioned that individual news organizations were often able to "take control of the story," shaping the news before the Pentagon asserted its spin on the day's events.

"We lost control of the context," Rendon warned. "That has to be fixed for the next war."

Yikes! The next war ... where's that? Iran? Syria? Or maybe closer to home?

You never know, do you? The professional saber-rattler knows how to keep his options open.

Kurt Nimmo: Ch�vez: Bush is a Genocidal Madman

Although I have a couple problems with Hugo Ch�vez, I love it when he tells the truth, especially when it is so difficult to get the truth here in Bushzarro world, a criminal nation with a corporate media filtering system allergic to the truth. �The planet's most serious danger is the government of the United States�. The people of the United States are being governed by a killer, a genocidal murderer and a madman,� Ch�vez said at a meeting of Venezuelan and Brazilian business executives in Caracas, reports Forbes.

Of course, the corporate media did not report this because it is true, but rather because they never miss a chance to portray Ch�vez as spiteful and irrational...

He doesn't hold back, does he? I'm enjoying Nimmo more and more lately, sometimes because he tells me things I didn't already know, sometimes because he puts the pieces together in such telling ways, and often because I find myself reading thoughts I've held in my frozen little brain for a long time, but which I've never been brave enough to articulate:

Hugo Ch�vez is on the neocon death list and he knows it.

No doubt he hopes the Bush administration will implode before it gets around to taking him out. It tried once but fumbled the ball. Next time it won't screw up.

However, I don't think the Bush administration will implode anytime soon.

Problem is, the Bush administration may engage in a crime wave before it explodes.

Imagine Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold with nukes and you have a pretty good if not chilling idea what Bush and Cheney will do before history ushers them out the back door.

Yikes! Did he really say that? Wow! It's no wonder I like Kurt Nimmo. He's fearless.

And here he is again: Washington Post Explains How the Nazi-Created CIA Protects Us

Dana Priest of the Washington Post tells us the CIA has �joint operation centers in more than 2 dozen nations� and the agency's job is �to track and capture suspected terrorists and to destroy or penetrate their networks.� Never mind that the CIA created the Islamic Terror Network (along with MI6, Mossad, and other intelligence �services�) and this is sort of like a cop selling drugs to a street corner pusher and then busting the dealer and his customers. Call it job security, or rather terror security. If not for the CIA's billion dollar effort in Afghanistan, there would be no al-Qaeda. But I suppose we can't expect Priest and the Washington Post to mention such bothersome details.
According to former CIA agent Ralph McGehee, �the CIA universally compiles local �Subversive Control Watch Lists' of leftists for attention by the local government,� in other words the CIA has specialized in providing death lists to fascist governments. McGehee elaborates:
After the CIA's overthrow of Arbenz's government in Guatemala in 1954, the U.S. gave the new government lists of opponents to be eliminated. In Chile from 1971 through 1973, the CIA fomented a military coup through forgery and propaganda operations and compiled arrest lists of thousands, many of whom were later arrested and assassinated. In Bolivia in 1975, the CIA provided lists of progressive priests and nuns to the government which planned to harass, arrest and expel them. To curry the favor of Khomeini, in 1983 the CIA gave his government a list of KGB agents and collaborators operating in Iran. Khomeini then executed 200 suspects and closed down the communist Tudeh party. In Thailand, I provided the names of hundreds of leftists to Thai security services. The Phoenix program in Vietnam was a massive U.S.-backed program to compile arrest and assassination lists of the Viet Cong for action by CIA-created Provisional Reconnaissance Unit death squads. In fact, former Director of the CIA William Colby compared the Indonesian operation directly to the Vietnam Phoenix Program. Colby further admitted directing the CIA to concentrate on compiling lists of members of the PKI [Communist Party of Indonesia] and other left groups.

Thus in Indonesia, in 1965 and 1966, between 250,000 and 1,000,000 people were killed, many of them as a result of the diligent work of the CIA. �The CIA desperately wants to conceal evidence of its role in the massacre, which it admits was one of the century's worst. The U.S. media seem equally determined to protect the American image from consequences of covert operations.� Dana Priest, as an official stenographer tasked with writing glowing reviews of how the CIA protects us from CIA-created terrorism, certainly does not put any of this into context. Of course, it should be noted that the Washington Post was, under the CIA's Operation Mockingbird, probably the numero uno disinformation and propaganda asset for the agency (Philip Graham, publisher of the Washington Post, was a documented CIA agent).
Priest expends a few thousand glowing words, making excuses for this massive terror organization, based on Nazi intelligence and initially staffed with Nazi war criminals, while never telling us the truth about the CIA: in addition to being the largest, most organized, and well funded terror organization in the world, it is a primary example of the Hegelian dialectic: it utilizes the Fichtean �thesis�antithesis�synthesis� model, first covertly creating terrorism, then reacting as our saviors to its custom-made terrorism, and finally proposing draconian measures to combat the terrorism it initially fabricated, thus dismantling our liberties and erecting a police state, as all faithful Nazis demand authoritarian government.

It's funny how he mentions Philip Graham and Operation Mockingbird. Hmmm. And was somebody saying something about Bob Woodward recently? Hmmm.

I can't leave you on such a note. So let's go back to South America, shall we? Here's John Pilger: The Rise of America's New Enemy

I was dropped at Paradiso, the last middle-class area before barrio La Vega, which spills into a ravine as if by the force of gravity. Storms were forecast, and people were anxious, remembering the mudslides that took 20,000 lives. "Why are you here?" asked the man sitting opposite me in the packed jeep-bus that chugged up the hill. Like so many in Latin America, he appeared old, but wasn't. Without waiting for my answer, he listed why he supported President Chavez: schools, clinics, affordable food, "our constitution, our democracy" and "for the first time, the oil money is going to us." I asked him if he belonged to the MRV, Chavez's party, "No, I've never been in a political party; I can only tell you how my life has been changed, as I never dreamt."

It is raw witness like this, which I have heard over and over again in Venezuela, that smashes the one-way mirror between the west and a continent that is rising. By rising, I mean the phenomenon of millions of people stirring once again, "like lions after slumber / In unvanquishable number", wrote the poet Shelley in The Mask of Anarchy. This is not romantic; an epic is unfolding in Latin America that demands our attention beyond the stereotypes and cliches that diminish whole societies to their degree of exploitation and expendability.

To the man in the bus, and to Beatrice whose children are being immunized and taught history, art and music for the first time, and Celedonia, in her seventies, reading and writing for the first time, and Jose whose life was saved by a doctor in the middle of the night, the first doctor he had ever seen, Hugo Chavez is neither a "firebrand" nor an "autocrat" but a humanitarian and a democrat who commands almost two thirds of the popular vote, accredited by victories in no less than nine elections. Compare that with the fifth of the British electorate that re-installed Blair, an authentic autocrat.

Chavez and the rise of popular social movements, from Colombia down to Argentina, represent bloodless, radical change across the continent, inspired by the great independence struggles that began with Simon Bolivar, born in Venezuela, who brought the ideas of the French Revolution to societies cowed by Spanish absolutism. Bolivar, like Che Guevara in the 1960s and Chavez today, understood the new colonial master to the north. "The USA," he said in 1819, "appears destined by fate to plague America with misery in the name of liberty."
The social movements are now a decisive force in every Latin American country - even in the state of fear that is the Colombia of Alvaro Uribe Velez, Bush's most loyal vassal. Last month, indigenous movements marched through every one of Colombia's 32 provinces demanding an end to "an evil as great as the gun": neo-liberalism. All over Latin America, Hugo Chavez is the modern Bolivar. People admire his political imagination and his courage. Only he has had the guts to describe the United States as a source of terrorism and Bush as Senor Peligro (Mr Danger). He is very different from Fidel Castro, whom he respects. Venezuela is an extraordinarily open society with an unfettered opposition - that is rich and still powerful. On the left, there are those who oppose the state, in principle, believe its reforms have reached their limit, and want power to flow directly from the community. They say so vigorously, yet they support Chavez. A fluent young arnarchist, Marcel, showed me the clinic where the two Cuban doctors may have saved his girlfriend. (In a barter arrangement, Venezuela gives Cuba oil in exchange for doctors).

At the entrance to every barrio there is a state supermarket, where everything from staple food to washing up liquid costs 40 per cent less than in commercial stores. Despite specious accusations that the government has instituted censorship, most of the media remains violently anti-Chavez: a large part of it in the hands of Gustavo Cisneros, Latin America's Murdoch, who backed the failed attempt to depose Chavez. What is striking is the proliferation of lively community radio stations, which played a critical part in Chavez's rescue in the coup of April 2002 by calling on people to march on Caracas.
The old-young man in the jeep, Beatrice and her healthy children and Celedonia with her "new esteem", are indeed a threat - the threat of an alternative, decent world that some lament is no longer possible. Well, it is, and it deserves our support.

Thanks to John Pilger for reminding us that a decent world is possible. How to get from here to there? That's the big question, isn't it? Thanks to Kurt Nimmo and James Bamford as well, for outlining some of the obstacles that stand in the way. Big obstacles, too, are they not?

What can we do? It starts with education, in my view. Hopefully you now know more than you did when you started reading this [rather long] item. That's one for the good guys.

Now let's see if you can help to educate your friends and neighbors, especially those without access to the internet.

How? One page at a time, that's how.

Recent titles at The Whispering Campaign include:

three excerpts from an essay by Charles Sullivan:
We Must Come To Grips With Our History
A Land Of Contradictions
The Antithesis Of Robin Hood

three excerpts from a blog by John Aravosis
Cheney Lies About The Lies He Told [part 1]
Cheney Lies About The Lies He Told [part 2]
Cheney Lies About The Lies He Told [part 3]

Document: Oil Chiefs Met With Cheney Task Force
based on a report by Dana Milbank and Justin Blum

Bush Administration Dishonors All Veterans
based on a column by Rev. Bill McGinnis
Torturing Detainees Will Not Help Us
based on an article by Larry Johnson
Our Most Basic Rights Are In Serious Trouble
based on a report by David Rose

They Will Need A Lot More Time To 'Study' This
based on an item from The Bulldog Manifesto
Amman Bombings: Nothing Here, Move On
based a report by Kurt Nimmo
Synthetic Terror On GOP Agenda AGAIN!
based on a report by Doug Thompson

A Time Comes When Silence Is Betrayal
based on a speech by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

and of course:

two items based on reports by Brad Friedman
Ohio '05 Election Results Staggeringly Impossible
GOP Voting Obstruction Case Bound for Trial

Election-Tampering Pure And Simple
based on a report by Joshua Micah Marshall
NM Election Officials Try to Block Machine Inspections
based on a report from

It's easy. It's safe. And it's fun. Spread some truth around your neighborhood this weekend. As Brad says, "Be The Media". Or as I sometimes say: Knowledge Is Power! Pass It On!!

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