Archive for the ‘Egypt’ Category

Morsi Backs Down: Revokes Power Grab,Referendum On Constitution Still Up

December 10, 2012

Egypt’s President has scrapped the decree that gave him sweeping new powers and effectively put him above the law of the land. But the opposition says that’s not enough

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Fighting in Gaza leaves U.S. in difficult position with Turkey, Egypt

November 20, 2012

Wahington Post
Anne Gearan

The Israeli-Hamas conflict is putting the Obama administration at odds with two of its most important partners in the Middle East, threatening to undermine other U.S. objectives in the region at a time of political upheaval. 

On Monday, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey, which has frequently served as a moderate voice in the region, described Israel as a “terrorist state” and condemned the airstrikes in the Gaza Strip, which is run by the Islamist group Hamas. Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi has warned Israel against a ground invasion and thrown his support behind Hamas’s leadership, sending his prime minister to Gaza.Pyongyang, however, might not be able or willing to follow Burma’s example of reform and opening.The growing outcry has exposed the United States to criticism that it has not done enough to press Israel to agree to a cease-fire. The conflict has also created a wedge in relations with officials in Egypt and Turkey and highlighted the limits of U.S. influence in the aftermath of the revolutions that swept the region last year.

Against this backdrop, President Obama on Tuesday escalated U.S. involvement in trying to resolve the conflict, dispatching Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton to meet with officials in Israel, the West Bank and Egypt. She leaves for the region from Phnom Penh, where she took part in the East Asia Summit with Obama.Since the United States does not have relations with Hamas, however, Clinton is scheduled to meet in Ramallah with West Bank Palestinian leaders who are on the sidelines of the Gaza crisis, leaving it unclear how much she can hope to achieve.Hours before Clinton was due to arrive in Israel, police and ambulances were called to…     Read More

Gilad Atzmon tonight on 21st Century Wire TV

September 20, 2012

21st Century Wire host Patrick Henningsen visits with award-winning artist/musician and writer Gilad Atzmon, to discuss a number of significant challenges facing the geopolitical scene today, as Atzmon takes on the Isreali Lobby and raises some difficult questions, as well as some uncomfortable truths regarding Jewish identity politics politics. Episode 3 Premieres this Thursday  at 6pm on PSTV channel 91 in the UK.

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Strange Bedfellows: How the U.S. and Egypt control the destiny of the region

March 20, 2012

Patrick Henningsen
21st Century Wire
March 20, 2012

For the past five decades, the CIA has enjoyed near total anonymity whilst operating behind a web of international shell companies and NGOs like USAID.

In the 21st century, the agency has come to rely on a much more complex array of ‘human rights’ and  ‘pro-democracy’ foundation-funded and US State Department-funded organizations around the globe like the National Endowment for Democracy, CANVAS and the Open Society Institute. But keeping its influence peddling and regime change activities hidden from the public view has become increasingly difficult in the age of digital awareness.

Perhaps the foreign intelligence services have spread themselves too thin across the globe, or overestimated the public’s ability see through an increasingly transparent agenda. Or maybe this new revolution business has become too well-funded, with too many high-flying international consultants, and has tried too hard to look trendy in staging pop political campaigns like KONY 2012 – making it harder and harder to conceal their not-so-clandestine activities.

Obama’s latest move sent a clear message to Washington’s New World Order partners: provided American operatives overseas are not harmed, Washington does not care all that much about human rights, and even less about its local NGO Arab operatives – like all those Arab NGO workers hung out to dry in Cairo this month.

Present and future non-US NGO workers might take note here – as working for US-funded democracy and human rights programs in places like Egypt will not guarantee you any protection should you organization come under fire for spying.

Egypt remains as the Middle East’s most populated country, and most strategically placed – controlling the Suez Canal, and bordering neighbors Israel, Sudan and Libya.

Unfortunately for Washington, Egypt’s military junta have quickly figured out how the US is always able to play both sides of the geopolitical game. Realizing that they had served their purpose in helping to secure Libya for NATO, Egypt knew it may soon fall fast out of favor with their paymasters in Washington, perhaps with yet another western-backed ‘Arab Spring’ at some point in the near future. Meanwhile, thousands of real pro-reform Egyptian protestors were literally beaten to death by Cairo’s brutal military junta.

On December 27, 2011, Washington’s favored Egyptian military ruling government did the unthinkable – raiding 17 NGO’s in Cairo, many of which were arguably under the CIA’s cloak and dagger regime change workshop umbrella. The raids included the State Department-funded National Democratic Institute (NDI) founded by Madeleine Albright, and the International Republican Institute (IRI), headed by regime change enthusiast John McCain.

Cairo’s surprise spook-house raid sent shockwaves through US State Department, as administrators led by Hillary Clinton decried the move “completely unacceptable”, not because it had anything specifically to hide (interestingly, we do not recall Clinton actually denying that spying was going on in Cairo), but because Egypt is the US’s second largest recipient of US military aid in the world – with annual military gift vouchers totally approximately $1.5 billion per annum – mostly for military hardware.

In reality there is no real relationship between US foreign aid and the pro-democracy traits of its winning contestants. The Obama administration quickly reconsidered its previously stern position with Egypt over the NGO raids, going ahead with full military aid to Egypt. It’s hard to imagine another scenario that could do more damage to U.S. and British intelligence operations in the Middle East. Clinton was even forced to issue a “national security waiver” exempting the White House from explaining to Congress why Egypt is not “implementing policies to protect freedom of expression, association, and religion, and due process of law”, yet still collecting its billions in US aid.

Although Egyptian courts lifted their travel ban on all American espionage suspects on March 1, 2012, criminal trials are still due to resume this April 10th against Egyptian NGO workers. NGO’s under the gun are the NDI, the IRI and of course, George Soros’s Freedom House, along with some 400 other NGOs also under official investigation.

Egypt played its role in bringing down Libya

During the fabled Arab Spring in 2011, Washington and London were under a very tight time table because of what was going on next door in Libya and needed a partner they could rely on. In order for NATO’s al-Qaida rebel forces, the Egyptian military junta obediently smuggled arms and al-Qaeda fighters over their western border into eastern Libya to help overthrow the regime of the late Col. Muammar Gaddafi.

The Wall Street Journal report confirmed this on March 17, 2011:

“Egypt’s military has begun shipping arms over the border to Libyan rebels with Washington’s knowledge, U.S. and Libyan rebel officials said…

… The shipments-mostly small arms such as assault rifles and ammunition-appear to be the first confirmed case of an outside government arming the rebel fighters. Those fighters have been losing ground for days in the face of a steady westward advance by forces loyal to Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi.”

Good for US: Christian persecuted in Egypt and the wider region

Myth: Because of evangelical pro-Israel right-wing voters, Washington will care deeply about the mistreatment of Christians in the Middle East and East Africa.

And here’s the point: once you get past the myth of the fabled Arab Spring, you quickly realize that it’s common practice now for Washington’s illustrious State Department and London’s Foreign Office to back Islamist governments throughout the region, along with the usual protocol of partnerships for dictatorships and monarchies throughout the Middle East. 

Christians are being targeted in what looks like obvious provocateur events against the Copts in Egypt, and Orthodox Christians in Sudan, Syria, Iraq and Turkey – and Washington appears not to care at all. Why?

Obama’s ignorance of Christian persecution is no mere political omission – it is the policy of Washington. Don’t think for one second that if a Mitt Romney were to take office in January 2013, this policy would change at all. For Washington and London, Islamist governments, with their bent towards theocracies – unlike Christian secularists, are much easier to manipulated and play against neighboring nations. Washington and the CIA’s real priorites in the region are aligned with a policy of destabilization, namely Israel and backing Islamist regimes. Where the US wants stabilty, it will back Monarchies and Dictators – as is the case with the Gulf States and Egypt’s military junta.  This also feeds into Washington and London’s strategy of surrounding the settler state Israel with Islamist regimes, thus furthering the old mantra that ‘Israel needs to defend itself’, and that is ’a clash of civilizations’ between east and west, and ensuring conflict for the next 50 years.

For this very reason, it is a top priority of engineers in Washington and London to bring down the secular/multi-religious society led by President Assad in Syria. The goal is destabilization and this simply cannot happen with a solid secular regime in place there. The same observation should be applied to Libya too, and the results speak for themselves now as the al-Qaida’s own Jolly Roger is flying over Benghazi. 

Although GOP mouthpieces like Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney speak about the horrors of groups like the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, the reality is that this islamist group was created and is mostly steered by the British intelligences agencies who work in concert with the CIA. A classic case of controlled oppostion dating back to the the 1920′s – but still, US politicians name-drop ‘Muslim Brotherhood’ in order to scare Americans about the horrors of Islamic extremism and what a threat they pose to Israel.

Egypt is, and always has been the central choke-point in the Middle East, and no matter if it’s a brutal military junta or a pedestrian dictator- democracy matters little to Washington. The military aid will continue to flow and real reformers will continue to be killed and imprisioned there. And when placed under pressure, the US will throw all its Egyptian intelligence assets under the bus – and still send Cairo its $1.5 billion cheque.

Alas, strange bedfellows these two countries do make.

A US-Backed Military Junta in Egypt Was Always The Plan

November 24, 2011

By Patrick Henningsen
21st Century Wire
November 24, 2011

This week has seen round two take place in Egypt between the ruling elite and public reformers, as protests converged once again on Cairo’s central Tahrir Square. But this time, there will be no help on the way from the beacons of democracy in the west.

As thousands of Egyptians camped out on the square, military police were determined to exhibit the same show of force that New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has demonstrated his Zuccotti Park, where Occupy Wall Street activists have been intimidated, beaten and pepper sprayed by law enforcement. On state television yesterday Egypt’s military cited heavy US police action against the Occupy Wall Street movement across America in order to justify their own bloody suppression. Rather ironic.

Clearly let down by the broken promises of their Arab Spring, anti-government demonstrators in Egypt are now calling for a ‘million-man march’ after being met with a violent government crack-down which has already claimed 33 lives and over 1,500 injured, with a steady stream of injured being carried out by motorcycle or on the backs of other protesters to field hospitals set up by volunteer doctors near Tahrir Square.

But Egypt’s military junta is not flinching this time – especially after recently receiving the blessing and full backing of President Barack Obama and US Government to carry on and squash any and all domestic unrest.

Watch this shocking video of the junta’s violence towards demonstrators:

US investigative journalist Ralph Schoenman explained during his interview with Press TV today the relationship between Egypt’s ruling military junta and Washington DC. Schoenman states, ”The relationship between the US and the SCAF – the Supreme Council Armed Forces – is that of the imperial sponsor and sustainer relying upon the Supreme Council Armed Forces to maintain not merely the dictatorship, but the oligarchy in power; the protection of capitalism in Egypt on the part of the tiny oligarchy that has usurped all financial, economic and political power for itself.”

Exactly 11 months ago, the world watched as a seemingly organic movement arose in Cairo’s Tahrir Square, calling for the downfall of Egypt’s stalwart US puppet, Hosni Mubarek. It succeeded in capturing the imagination of the world. In terms of a real revolution however – or real progress, Egypt’s own Arab Spring was nothing more the a cruel, staged event used as political leverage by the west in order to shatter the prospect of real reform in Egypt, and also to topple a series of US-non-friendly regimes in the wider Middle East region.

Egypt’s transition last spring was no more than a progression of United States and Israeli long-range foreign policies and corporate goals for the region, and for whatever reasons –one which no longer required the services of President Hosni Mubarek.

New moves on the grand chessboard have been happening between Egypt, Israel, and Jordan, as well as regime change projects to the west in Libya – meaning that the US-UK-Israeli axis powers would require a much stronger police state in Egypt, acheivable only through a solid military dictatorship there.

In terms of geopolitical and economic power in the 21st century, controlling the supply and delivery of energy, particularly gas, has emerged as a key component for establishing dominance in any region. In Washington’s eyes, corporate interests will always trump issues of democratic reform. Currently, Egypt supplies roughly 40 percent of Israel’s natural gas, and neighboring Jordan depends on Egyptian gas to generate 80 percent of the Kingdom’s electricity, all through Egypt’s East Mediterranean Gas Company (EMG) and its Arish–Ashkelon pipeline.

It turns out that EMG is controlled by a US-Israeli holding company called the Ampal-American Israel Corporation (AAIC). The firm also has regional holdings in chemicals, telecommunications, real estate and leisure. Four partnering Israeli firms initially signed 20-year contracts worth up to $10 billion dollars to import Egyptian gas, but a series of sabotage incidents have disrupted the pipeline causing Moody’s to downgrade AAIC’s debenture rating, a condition which could be stifling investment into the gas firm’s major capital infrastructural projects.

Not surprisingly, this joint venture has been opposed by the various cadres of opposition in Egypt, most notably the Muslim Brotherhood, who called for Cairo to revoke the US-Israeli gas deal, as far back as 2008.

What any off-shore corporate giant requires when setting up shop overseas is corporate stability,coupled with zero social dissent in the region. To be sure, the best tried and tested stable interface for the international globalist corporation has always been an unelected military dictatorship, and Egypt has delivered exactly this to her benefactors in American, Israel and the Jordan. All Egypt’s military government requires out this arrangement is its annual $4 billion in US military aid, as well as pay-offs from the corporation to key members of the Egyptian military junta.

Similarly, Libya’s unelected National Transitional Council was appointed by the US, Great Britain, Israel and France early in 2011, in order to prepare the country for a complete globalist takeover and the complete privatisation of the country’s industries, resources and assets. This type of nation-building was clearly the case in Iraq, and may soon ring true for both Syria and Iran.

The mainstream media’s global brainwashing operation was a success in terms of framing the 2011 Arab Spring as genuine grass roots event, spreading freedom across the lands. Even today, many Occupy Wall Street supports and participants credit the legendary Arab Spring as the pretext for popular uprisings in Spain, and eventually in USA and Europe.

In this case, and once again, people have allowed the Establishments power players and clandestine foundations to dictate a popular version of history. The genius in this globalist technique of social engineering to allow protesters to believe that it was they themselves, who designed and executed these recent waves of popular dissent. US journalist Schoenman added here, ”That is what the basic dynamic is – namely to prevent the revolution unfolding in Egypt from actually transforming Egyptian society”.

Caught in this web of deception, ordinary citizens on the ground are then left to blame, and fight with each other when the story does not conclude with a happy ending – totally unaware that their political destinies have already been written ahead of time by government departments, think tanks and foundations, mainly in the US and Great Britain.

We now that it was not Egyptian and Tunisian students working in a political vacuum, but the Centre for Applied Nonviolent Action and Strategies (CANVAS), a professional consultancy, who took  students from the Middle East and trained them overseas as early back as 2009. CANVAS are still touting their recent role in working with Egyptian and Tunisian protesters, after teaching them the skills that helped bring down their presidents and spark regional revolt.

There are also reports of CANVAS activity during the early days of Occupy Wall Street, including a video of CANVAS founder Ivan Marovic, himself addressing the OWS General Assembly.

Formerly known as OPTOR!, and known for its role in bringing down the Milosevic regime in the former Yugoslavia, CANVAS is part-funded and supported by a number of ‘pro-democracy’ foundations, with links to George Soros’s Freedom House and Open Society Institute, as well as CIA-linked National Endowment for Democracy and USAID.

Although mostly hidden from the public eye, these globalist foundations, professional think tanks and NGOs undertake research, host training seminars, and supply material which are then used to influence regime change all over the world. Theirs is the venue of choice for activities that cannot officially be conducted on the government clock.

By the time it’s all said and done, the death toll in Egypt could reach to the hundreds, or thousands? The truth is, Washington and the UN are not interested in the people of Egypt anymore than they are genuinely interested in the Occupy Wall Street protesters who have been beaten out and pepper sprayed out of New York’s Zuccotti Park. These people simply do not represent enough $dollar signs – or business opportunity – to matter for Washington and the UN.

The US-led rhetoric regarding freedom and democracy in Egypt was – and still is, a complete hoax. Egypt knows this now but sadly, the last people to ever figure this fact out will be the people in the US and Europe, blinded by ideals they still believe they have.

LIBYA FOLLY MAY COST OBAMA THE BLACK VOTE IN 2012

June 28, 2011

Editor’s NoteWithout question, Barack Obama came out of the political gate faster than any man in history, sporting a flashy rainbow stripe and pumped up with that political steroid we now as “Hope and Change”. But even 21st century messiahs can run into the realities of political physics. A hard and fast fall back down to earth, for a marketing phenomenon who- we must not forget, ran (and won) on the most unashamed, in-your-face antiwar ticket in modern history. After Obama took office there was no change in imperial war policy, it was if Bush Jr had somehow fallen asleep, drunk under the White House’s Presidential Tanning Bed (sincere apologies for the crude turn of phrase here, but these are very cruel wars, no hope, no change). More wars, more and more bombings and countless body bags.

BARACK O'BOMER: When the Neo-Con War angle was spent, the elite tried their Socialist Bomber, who is already crashing and burning.

We all thought Bin Laden would save him. He thought he could bomb his way into re-election. So here we are 20,000 Tomahawk Cruise Missiles,  and 15,000 sorties and smart bombs later, and Barack finds himself further in free-fall, down those all-important Presidential approval polls. Perhaps African-Americans are finally waking up after the come-down from the Barack-Buzz, the Studio 54 soiree is finally over. As their first ever African US Chief Exec continues to put more Africans (Libyans) into body bags, his faithful are rapidly fleeing for what’s left of the country’s  moral high ground. He was meant to be Zbigniew Brzezinski and Henry Kissinger’s six million dollar Manchurian machine. Americans truly  believed they had found their mythological Superman, only to be duped and sold another golf club-swinging teleprompter reading bullet pusher.
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More likely, a true hero for Americans will come in the form of some one with a genuine track record of community service, a woman named Cynthia McKinney. It’s possible that America has not seen such a politician with this much character who is willing to put it all on the line for the people she works for- the American people.

As we warned him earlier this year… Barack, the penny will eventually drop and your fans will demand substance, not more clever sales spin. We didn’t find it in you Barack, but thank God we found it in Cynthia McKinney.
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The irony… a man who accepted a Nobel Peace Prize before he started working. Anyone who would accept such a dodgy award could never really be worth his salt.

PICKET: Anti-war left steps up against Obama

By Kerry Picket
Washington Times June 28, 2011

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An important 2008 campaign coalition for the president is not happy with his actions in Libya and it could very well cost him politically in 2012.
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Former Georgia Democratic Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney blasted President Barack Obama on Saturday at an ANSWER coalition meeting in Washington, D.C. for engaging the United States in a war against Libya. After returning from Libya with a group of U.S. journalists, Ms. McKinney launched a U.S. speaking tour to talk about her trip. “I took a rash step because I was so outraged that our president would launch yet another illegal, unconstitutional, immoral, war and so I also knew that my government was lying,” she said to a group of 60 -70 anti-war Left attendees sitting in a Columbia Heights meeting room. Ms. Mckinney told the gathering:

“Black America has been extremely supportive of our president, but not in this case. A line has been drawn in the sand with respect to our president bombing Africa and Libya in particular because of the history of support when the United States was supporting apartheid in the African continent, it was the people of Libya and the people of Muammar Qaddafi who were fighting to eradicate apartheid. And for those blacks and people of color inside this country who were fighting to eradicate American style apartheid, the people of Libya and Muammar Qaddafi were supportive as well.” “Now I don’t know that history, but brother Akbar knows that history very well and that is part of the reason why black America has drawn this line in the sand because this is something that is a historical relationship that has context that brother Obama …that President Obama…stepped across. He has crossed over the threshold.”

Listen here
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The war in Libya continues to lose support and despite liberals on a site like The Dally Kos who tout reasons to support the war, leftists in the anti-war ANSWER coalition are dead set against it. Congressman Dennis Kucinich, Ohio Democrat, was part of a bi-partisan group of members on Capitol Hill who filed a lawsuit against the president two weeks ago for executing an illegal war. Before the House voted to deny authorization to the Libyan war but fund the operation, Rep.Kucinich told reporters last week, “It’s a tradition that the president’s party on the congressional level tries to offer him support, but I think that we need to give better advice to the president that this mission is not possible. That it’s misguided. That he had advice from the Pentagon and from his Attorney General that would suggest.
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” Mr. Kucinich added, “He should not pursue this without going to Congress and that we serve the president best when we tell him what we really think not just to endorse the policies that he has indicated that he wants.” Rep. Kucinich later told me that we was asked to participate in an anti-war event in October, when I asked him why the anti-war groups like ANSWER have not been as visible on the streets now as they were during the Bush administration. Ms. McKinney further attacked President Obama:

“I have been blessed to be able to travel all over the world. And as I have traveled, at one point I was extremely proud of the fact that black people in the United States and all over the world have a moral authority because everyone all over the world understands the plight that we have struggled against that we continue to have to struggle against, but unfortunately now, the policies of the Bush administration have been enunciated and implemented by black faces from Colin Powell and Condoleeza Rice and now we have a continuation of those polices through the office of President Obama.” “So I’m directly impacted negatively by the actions of these black people who have decided that they would cast their lot with warmongers, war criminals, and people who peddle in death and destruction. So I decided as a responsible and conscious black person that I wanted my voice heard against what these other people were enunciating and at the same time I also am just sick and tired of war. I want better for my country.”

Listen here  Full audio of McKinney here

Randy Short of Black Agenda Report was also on Saturday’s ANSWER speakers’ panel and went after President Obama for “funding” what Mr. Short called “n****r hunting” in Africa.

“There was the other thing I was to look at and that was how these terrorist people who are killing, support the troops over in Iraq from Derna, from Benghazi…these same al Qaeda people that we’re being taxed to fight are the ones we’re funding who are raping with Viagara black and brown women–cutting their breasts off and letting them bleed to death–taking their body parts and spelling the word ‘whore.’ That’s a humanitarian intervention people? They are going on African hunts or we would say, ‘n****r hunting.’ Our president is funding this. I have friends who are Somali who fled Libya and are now in Italy give me stories about how they have been robbed, how the have been beaten, and how people are being killed.”

Listen here  Full audio of Short here

It is unlikely ANSWER will get the huge numbers of anti-war participants it saw during the Bush years. Without a Republican in office, the left has little in common to unite and hate over. However, an anti-war march is planned in Washington on July 9, nonetheless. It seems that the left-wing is currently divided among three factions. One side is protecting the president from negative fallout during a campaign year from his own foreign policy actions. Another more pure pacifist crowd wants to retreat immediately from all foreign intervention regardless of consequences.
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The third albeit smaller camp senses impending election doom and is looking for a face-saving way out of the intra-party dispute in the hopes of salvaging some endangered seats in Congress. Is it no wonder President Obama called to draw down troops from Afghanistan so he could focus on domestic policy?

This story is from 21st Century Wire

The “Rape in Libya” Story – Our Military’s Latest Fairytale

June 17, 2011

By Peter Dale Scott
June 17, 2011 

It is a troubled time for NATO’s campaign against Libya.

President Obama has seen a near-revolt in Congress against the costly war, while Defense Secretary Gates in Brussels has warned his European allies that their tepid response “is putting the Libya mission and the alliance’s very future at risk.” Back home, according to the London Daily Mail, “Mr Gates has requested extra funds for Libya operations, but has been rebuffed by the White House.”

PR WARS: US pr hacks are likely to have invented the latest tabloid talking point of rape in Libya in order to sway audiences in the UK and US.

The past history of American wars tells us that, when the war-going begins to get tough, the professional p.r. campaigns get going, often with wholly invented stories. For example, when in 1990 Defense Secretary Colin Powell was expressing doubts that the United States should attack Kuwait, stories appeared that, as revealed by classified satellite photos, Saddam had amassed 265,000 troops and 1500 tanks at the edge of the Saudi Arabian border. Powell then changed his mind, and the attack proceeded. But after the invasion a reporter from the St. Petersburg Times viewed satellite photos from a commercial satellite, and “she saw no sign of a quarter of a million troops or their tanks.”

Hawks in Congress, notably Tom Lantos and Stephen Solarz, secured support for the attack on Iraq with a story from a 15-year-old girl, that she had seen Kuwaiti infants snatched from their incubators by Iraqi soldiers. The story was discredited when it was learned that the girl, the daughter of the Saudi ambassador in Washington, might not have visited the hospital at all. She had been prepped on her story by the p.r. firm Hill & Knowlton, which had a contract for $11.5 million from the Kuwaiti government.

The history of American foreign interventions is littered with such false stories, from the “Remember the Maine” campaign of the Hearst press in 1898, to the false stories of a North Vietnamese attack on U.S. destroyers in the so-called Second Tonkin Gulf incident of August 4, 1964. We know furthermore that in their Operation Northwoods documents, the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff in 1962 proposed a series of ways, some of them lethal, to deceive the American people in order to engineer a war against Cuba.

Since the fiasco of the false Iraqi stories in 1990-91, these stories have tended to be floated by foreign sources, usually European. This was conspicuously the case with the forged yellowcake documents from Italy underlying Bush’s misleading reference to Iraq in his 2003 State of the Union address. But it was true also of the false stories linking Saddam Hussein to the celebrated anthrax letters of 2001. (Their anthrax was later determined to have come from a U.S. biowarfare laboratory.)

This recurring history of falsified stories to justify interventions should be on our minds as we now face the allegations, as yet neither proven nor disproven, that Gaddafi has been using rape as a method to fight insurrection, and may have been guilty of raping victims himself. These charges were made on June 8 by Luis Moreno-Ocampo, chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), who claimed (according to Time Magazine):

“… there were indications that Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi had ordered the rape of hundreds of women during his violent crackdown on the rebels and that he had even provided his soldiers with Viagra to stimulate the potential for attacks.”

According to Time, the rape stories are being circulated by doctors who claim to have met and treated patients but do not have patients’ permission to reveal their identities. Earlier, according to a Libyan doctor interviewed in an Al Jazeera video, “many doctors have found Viagra and condoms in the pockets of dead pro-Gaddafi fighters, as well as treated female rape survivors. The doctor insists this clearly indicates the Gaddafi regime is using rape as a weapon of war.”

But what of Moreno’s charge that “Now we are getting some information that Gaddafi himself decided to rape, and this is new.” This is a sensational charge: until we learn there is a reliable source for it, one can suspect it was made to grab headlines.

One problem in investigating these charges is that Libyan culture is so unkind to rape victims that they are reluctant to come forward. Researchers for Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International were unable to find one woman who said she had been raped. A U.N. human rights investigator, Cherif Bassiouni, told Agence France-Presse that the rape and Viagra stories were being circulated by the Benghazi authorities as “part of a “massive hysteria.'” In fact he had discovered only three cases.

Others have objected that the purchase of Viagra-type drugs falls far short of indicating a war crime. Former U.S. Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, in Tripoli on an investigative mission, has pointed out in her emails that to date the one army known to have distributed Viagra as part of its war operations is the U.S. Army — as a bribe to entice information from aging tribal leaders in Afghanistan.

Military conflict of course is normally accompanied by rape. What might constitute a war crime would be whether (to quote Time) Gaddafi “had provided his soldiers with Viagra.” Moreno actually said, according to the Associated Press, that “some witnesses confirmed that the [Libyan] government was buying containers of Viagra-type drugs “to enhance the possibility to rape.'”

Time‘s subtle enhancement of Moreno’s claim — from purchasing Viagra to providing it to soldiers, reminds us of the sorry record of the U.S. mainstream media in circulating past false stories to justify war. It is painful to say this, but virtually every major U.S. military intervention since Korea has been accompanied by false stories. Mr. Moreno-Ocampo should be pressed to come forward quickly with the supporting evidence for his charges, which should be based on more than the testimony of doctors working for the Benghazi regime.

This story first appeared at Global Research.


US Naval and Troop Movements Toward North Africa, Middle East As Syrian Destabilization Escalates

June 17, 2011

Webster Tarpley
June 17, 2011

US Special Forces units based at Fort Hood, Texas, have been told to prepare for deployment to Libya no later than July, according to a US military source. The Special Forces would then be followed in September or October by heavy armored units of the First Cavalry Division, currently located in Iraq and Afghanistan, along with other components of the US III Corps. This report was broadcast today on the Alex Jones radio program, and comes against the backdrop of escalating US destabilization operations against Syria and sharpening US condemnation of Damascus and its ally, Tehran.

Observers point out that US Special Forces have been in Libya since February. They also note that, while the Libyan destination is highly plausible, some of these units may also find themselves on the way to Yemen, Syria, or beyond.

Another anonymous military source speaking on the Alex Jones broadcast reported that US stocks of depleted uranium (DU) munitions are currently very low. This may be the reality behind outgoing Defense Secretary Gates’ complaint last week that NATO is “running out of bombs” in Libya, and similar remarks by French NATO General Stephane Abrial in Belgrade.

BOMBS AWAY: US and NATO forces are sizing up Syria as their next carpet bombing 'regime change' project.

A source at US Central Command (CENTCOM) confirmed that US forces are being lined up for new foreign missions, and added that his unit had recently processed two deceased US Army soldiers and three deceased US civilians, possibly mercenaries. The source attributed these cases to Libya, although US operations in Libya are widely thought to be controlled by the new US African Command (AFRICOM).

These reports should be taken together with the energetic protests from the Russian Foreign Ministry over the presence of the US Aegis cruiser Monterrey (a vessel with anti-ballistic missile capabilities) in the Black Sea, along with the arrival of the amphibious assault ship USS Bataan off the coast of Syria.

According to the Israeli site DebkaFile, which often reflects the views of the Mossad, “Western sources additonally report a build-up of ship-borne anti-missile missile strength in the Mediterranean basin. This huge concentration of naval missile interceptor units looks like preparations by Washington for the contingency of Iran, Syria and Hizballah letting loose with surface missiles against US and Israeli targets in the event of US military intervention to stop the anti-opposition slaughter underway in Syria. Moscow, Tehran and Damascus, in particular, are taking this exceptional spate of American military movements in and around the Mediterranean as realistically portending American intervention in Syria.” Debka also says that Hezbollah is in the process of moving some of its formidable missile assets from northern Lebanon to the central regions of that country, closer to Israel.”

The Obama administration is thus on a collision course with the Congress over the War Powers Act, which requires legislative approval of the Libyan war by June 20. If Obama continues to bomb Libya beyond next Monday, or compounds his air assault with a ground invasion, he will be impeachment bait.

Originally posted on Webster Tarpley’s blog.

NETANYAHU DEFENDING THE STATE TOO LATE

June 2, 2011

By Andrew McKillop
21st Century Wire
June 2, 2011

Israel’s prime minister Netanyahu surprised few recently by furiously rejecting US President Barack Obama’s proposal to use the 1967 borders as the basis for a two-state solution, in the wondrously  long-running, vicious, costly and ultimately useless Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

According to Netanyahu, the main hurdle to any agreement here is simply that the 1967 frontiers are “utterly indefensible”.

This of course is forgetting that nuclear facilities like Dimona have made Israel fundamentally harder to defend, left instead with more of a 19th century colonial-style border. For Netanyahu, of course, this argument is waved aside with contempt, as he and his antiquated political friends shrink back, laager style into their 1914-1918 military philosophy.

In addition to their Big Bertha first world war-type weapons – tanks and artillery – Israel also has modern hi-tech weapons at its disposal, thanks to American taxpayers and generations of American and European politicians giving knee-jerk support to a derisory remake of the Crusades. Indeed, Israel exists only at the behest of the Anglo-American and European elite who drew its borders and supplied it with political and military aid. Why these Holy Wars were abandoned, long ago, is as simple as why Israel will abandon its colonial conquests: they generated no serious war booty or peace dividend to enthral and enrich the European masses. Their “net present worth” was zero.

THE STATE TOO LATE

Israel, as a state, was a completely classic 19th century European-style nation-building concept. Other examples include almost all existing European and African countries of today, with a few exceptions like Spain, Portugal, France and England, and the USA which can claim a much older, or slightly more mature pedigree. These states, at their time of founding had totally different social, cultural, ideological, economic and demographic conditions, relative to the real world of today.

Many nation states of today are simply dysfunctional within a globalized economy. Israel is no different, it only came later to the party.

From Dan to Beersheba and a lot further, is how we might put the way Israeli maximalists of the 19th and 20th centuries interpreted where their ‘national heartland’ extends. Their present Land of David, thanks to the Goliath of US taxpayers funds, is of course impressive space-wise, but it unhappily possesses rather small amounts of real resources, relative to the dreamtime land grab of those fundamentalist Israeli maximalists. Among these, with no possible error, we can identify Benyamin Netanyahu.

NETANYAHU: Old thinking is holding up any real progress and increasing frustration for Israel.

The son of a renowned historian, the personal secretary of Zeev Jabotinski considered by some to be founder of the Zionist right, Netanyahu absorbed from childhood his father’s interpretation of Jewish history as a series of tragedies. The lesson was simple: gentiles cannot be trusted. In this narrative, Jewish history is one of constant betrayal by white anti-semites, where the only remedy is for all Jews to return to the Biblical Land of Israel. Its Arab neighbors can also never be trusted, as Jabotinski preached, so the new Israeli nation must erect a Maginot Line of Jewish military power to deter its enemies forever. This is exactly what we have today in 2011.

The Biblical Land of Israel was imaginatively interpreted – exactly the same way that 19th century European nation builders did when planning their own respective land grabs. The “historical” but entirely imaginary territory called Eretz Yisrael extended from the Nile in Egypt, and ranged across large chunks of the Arabian Peninsula, extending as far north into today’s Turkey, Armenia and the lower Russian Caucasian republics, and east to Iraq. The sweep and reach was breathtaking, very much like the oil-spawned invention by Europeans and Americans, of 1932, called Saudi Arabia.

The real Israel was not founded until 1948: by then the window of opportunity for creating European-style nation states almost anyplace outside Europe – in Africa, Latin America and Asia – was closing. The colonial model no longer applied. Populations had grown too much and too fast, weapons technology was spreading at the same time as democratic notions. The world’s economy – even in 1948 – was beginning to globalize, and nuclear power was soon going to be developed. It was the start of the downhill run for 19th century-style nations.

In terms of mainstream consensus reality, this phenomenon is in no way recognized – officially – today. Sadly, the myth of supreme military power and its 19th century land-grabbing racist modus operandi, called Eminent Domain, are still riding high in the small mental space of today’s great leaders, huddled together in G8 and G20 meetings. Therefore, it is unsurprising, to say the least, that most European and American leaders approve and support Israel. Unaware that because of nuclear power and similar high-tech Doomsday Machines like pesticide factories and other Seveso-type industrial centres on their home territory, Israel have no real defence from attack by a rising number of potential enemies – or victims of their constant and micro-colonial aggression- they blithely soldier on.

NUKES ARE A LIABILITY

Israel itself seems to wax lyrical endlessly about its exposure to the terrorist threat. More important perhaps should be Israel’s exposure to a conventional military attack. In an era of ballistic missiles, Israel’s so called ‘defence’ is grossly compromised.

Missiles owned by Iran and many other nations can easily reach Israel’s supposedly secret, supposedly forgotten, supposedly impregnable atom bomb factories in the rural, tourism-oriented areas near Dimona, west of the Dead Sea and near the Jordanian border. Its plutonium brewing reactors, reprocessing centres, fuel rod ponds and bomb fabrication workshops, stored weapons, nuclear wastes and fissile materials- once the ultimate proof of Israeli military superiority- are all open to attack.

LIABILITY: The nuclear production site at Dimona remains a strategic nightmare for Israel.

If such an event were to occur, Israel would receive a Fukushima-times-six kick into the bin of history, at the flick of a missile launch switch. To be sure, not only Israel would be wiped out, but a large chunk of eastern Egypt, all of Palestine, the west of Jordan, most of Lebanon and much of southern Syria – depending on wind and weather. Under a worst-credible ballistic missile attack on Israel’s Dimona nuclear production sites, at least 500 times the radiation of the Hiroshima atom bomb of 1945 would be released, and thrown to the rains and winds.

BIG BERTHA PHILOSOPHY

Israel’s military elite are almost indistinguishable from its political elite because Israel is permanently war ready. Israeli propaganda tells Israelis to be immensely proud of their kill-and-forget hi-tech inventions like drones, with air-to-ground missile launch capability, Depleted Uranium(DU) munitions, anti-personnel, aka anti-civilian weapons, and a host of other joyous morale-boosting state-of-the-art death tech. But whenever Israel is moved by its fundamental Eminent Domain urgings, and when it simply has to invade Lebanon or Palestine to punish, waste and destroy, it wheels out its 20th century-style tanks and artillery. Israeli paranoia, a natural mass reaction to the warfare state, also results in constant incoherence and weakness in Israel’s negotiating stance in the endless farce of creating a Palestinian state.

This planned Palestinian state would almost certainly be, by Israeli standards, by definition demilitarized. It is equally sure that Israel must see its army “sit along the Jordan River” and occupy hundreds of isolated settlements spread amidst a hostile Palestinian population- supposedly for strategic reasons. The costs can only be high, the economic benefit low, which will again require generous military aid via the US.

Netanyahu should in fact study the lessons of the 1973 Yom Kippur war on the Golan Heights before denouncing Obama’s idea. At the time, long-term trends making Israel the “State Too Late” were already at work. When the war started, the first action of the Israeli army command was the forced evacuation of the area’s settlements, which Israel’s generals knew would quickly become a burden, and an obstacle to maneuver, for their troops and tanks. The net result was simple: it left Israel with even less defensible and more erratic borders than the supposedly “indefensible” 1967 lines.

One might come to realise here that if there was genuine will on the part of Israel and the US to create a Palestinian state, it would have already happened by now. The reality is that it hasn’t happened, and will never happen so long as Israel’s 24-7 warfare state is allowed to dominate its political scene.

MOVING FORWARD IN 2011

Today, Israel can only be frightened by the collapse of friendly dictators in the region, starting with Egypt’s Mubarak, and threats to known and controllable dictators such as Syria’s Bashr al Assad and the Yemenite “good dictator” Saleh.  For Israel’s borders to be defensible, they first need to be legitimate and internationally recognized. Unfortunately, Israeli paranoia seeps out of Netanyahu, who does not trust the gentiles to supply ironclad international recognition of Israel’s borders, and fears that the America under Hopey Changey Obama is increasingly unreliable as its international sponsor.

Probably impossible- or extremely unlikely, the real solution for Israel would be to firstly accept that it is a State Too Late. Negotiation with its Arab neighbours, all of which face their own and real problems of legitimacy and popular support, could fast forward to a vastly more secure and productive set of community based solutions. In its favour, Israel has a democracy framework, it has an economy that even without massive infusions from the USA and Europe can survive, especially if its population falls as the stable state shrinks to a more-realistic size, composition and structure.

For such pipe dreams to have any potential of becoming real, however, Israel’s current political and corporate warfare state leaderships must entirely disappear – along with its neighbouring countries, Europe, the USA, and elsewhere.

COPYRIGHT ANDREW MCKILLOP 2011

Water Emerges as a Hidden Weapon

May 27, 2011

By Simba Russeau
ISP

CAIRO, May 27, 2011 (IPS) – Libya’s enormous aquatic reserves could potentially become a new weapon of choice if government forces opt to starve coastal cities that heavily rely on free flowing freshwater.

With only five percent of the country getting at least 100 millimetres of rainfall per year, Libya is one of the driest countries in the world.

Historically, coastal aquifers or desalination plants located in Tripoli were of poor quality due to contamination with salt water, resulting in undrinkable water in many cities including Benghazi.

Oil exploration in the southern Libyan desert in the mid-1950s revealed vast quantities of fresh, clean groundwater – this could meet growing national demand and development goals.

Scientists estimate that nearly 40,000 years ago when the North African climate was temperate, rainwater in Libya seeped underground forming reservoirs of freshwater.

In 1983, Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi initiated a huge civil water works project known as the Great Man-Made River (GMMR) – a massive irrigation project that drew upon the underground basin reserves of the Kufra, Sirte, Morzuk, Hamada and the Nubian Sandstone Aquifer – to deliver more than five million cubic metres of water per day to cities along Libya’s coastal belt.

GMRP: Libyans call it "the eighth wonder of the world" (IMAGE: BBC)

“The Colonel’s GMMR project was discounted when first unveiled as an uneconomic flight of fancy and a wasteful exploitation of un-renewable freshwater reserves,” Middle East-based journalist Iason Athanasiadis told IPS. “But subsequently it was hailed as a masterful work of engineering, tapping into underground aquifers so vast that they could keep the 2007 rate of dispersal going for the next 1,000 years.”

Lying beneath the four African countries Chad, Egypt, Libya and Sudan, the Nubian Sandstone Aquifer System (NSAS) is the world’s largest fossil water aquifer system, covering some two million square kilometres and estimated to contain 150,000 cubic kilometres of groundwater.

Fossil water is groundwater that has been trapped in underground fossil aquifers for thousands or even millions of years. Unlike most aquifers the NSAS is a non-renewable resource, and over extraction or water mining could cause rising sea levels.

“The GMMR provides 70 percent of the population with water for drinking and irrigation, pumping it from Libya’s vast underground aquifers like the NSAS in the south to populated coastal areas 4,000 kilometres to the north,” Ivan Ivekovic, professor of political science at the American University of Cairo told IPS.

“The entire project was drawn out over five phases. Phase one took water from eastern pipelines in As- Sarir and Tazerbo to Benghazi and Sirte; phase two supplied water in Tripoli and western pipelines in Jeffara from the Fezzan region; and phase three intended to create an integrated system and increase the total daily capacity to almost four million cubic metres and provide up to 138,000 cubic metres per day to Tobruk.”

With an estimated cost of nearly 30 billion dollars, the GMMR’s network of nearly 5,000 kilometres of pipeline from more than 1,300 wells drilled up to 500 metres deep into the Sahara was also intended to increase the amount of arable land for agricultural production.

“Libya could start an agro-business similar to California’s San Joaquin Valley. Like Libya, California is essentially desert but because of irrigation and water works projects that desert valley became the largest producer of food and cotton in the world, making it the ninth largest economy in the world,” Patrick Henningsen, 21st Century Wire editor and founder, told IPS.

BREAD BASKET: California's San Joaquin Valley success was made possible by a series of large water works projects.

“At the moment the only agro-markets in the Mediterranean zone competing to supply citrus and various other popular supermarket products to Europe are Israel and Egypt. In 10 or 20 years, Libya could surpass both of those countries because they now have the water to green the desert.”

In the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) water has created a growing regional crisis and could be an impetus for further unrest. Demand is increasing as populations skyrocket – reserves are rapidly depleting and food inflation has taken its toll on cash-strapped countries dependent on imported food staples.

“There are several elements to the Libyan mess. One of them is certainly water. I would highlight the issue by quoting similar situations in South and Central Asia,” News Central Asia Editor Tariq Saeedi told IPS.

“Kashmir is understood to be the cause of rift between India and Pakistan but actually it’s the water of three rivers – Ravi, Sutlej and Beas – that originate from upper Kashmir that is the source of dispute.

“The Amudarya River that starts from Afghanistan and criss-crosses between Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan before terminating at Aral Sea is another example. The ability of this river to trigger a conflict in Central Asia will rise proportionately with the ability of Afghanistan to use more water from Amudarya for its own use.

“In a nutshell, whoever controls NSAS, controls the economies, foreign policies and destinies of several countries in the region, not just north-eastern Africa,” explains Saeedi.

Last month, Libyan officials warned that NATO airstrikes on the GMMR’s pipelines could cause a humanitarian and environmental disaster. But pro-government forces could also disrupt the GMMR’s flow if they wish, leaving opposition-held regions in the east with only the Ajdabiya reservoir – this holds just a month’s supply of water.

“Pure freshwater from the south must continue being pumped because without it Benghazi would die,” says Ivekovic. “The water pipelines run parallel to the oil and gas pipelines and it’s interesting that with most of the fighting happening around the areas of Ajdabiya, Sirte and Benghazi that none of these pipes have yet been damaged.

“In a desertifying region already wracked by water conflict, Libya’s enormous aquatic reserves will be a large prize for whoever gets the upper hand in this struggle,” says Athanasiadis.

(END)