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The Economy Will Not Recover Until the Economic Criminals are Prosecuted, and There Are Real Investigations Into 9/11 and Other Government Failures

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Washington’s Blog

Trust in Government is Necessary for a Stable Economy

A 2005 letter in premier scientific journal Nature reviews the research on trust and economics:

Trust ... plays a key role in economic exchange and politics. In the absence of trust among trading partners, market transactions break down.
In the absence of trust in a country's institutions and leaders,
political legitimacy breaks down. Much recent evidence indicates that
trust contributes to economic, political and social success.

Forbes wrote an article in 2006 entitled "The Economics of Trust". The article summarizes the importance of trust in creating a healthy economy:

Imagine
going to the corner store to buy a carton of milk, only to find that
the refrigerator is locked. When you've persuaded the shopkeeper to
retrieve the milk, you then end up arguing over whether you're going to
hand the money over first, or whether he is going to hand over the
milk. Finally you manage to arrange an elaborate simultaneous exchange.
A little taste of life in a world without trust--now imagine trying to
arrange a mortgage.

 

Being able to trust people might seem like a
pleasant luxury, but economists are starting to believe that it's
rather more important than that. Trust is about more than whether you
can leave your house unlocked; it is responsible for the difference
between the richest countries and the poorest.

 

"If you take a
broad enough definition of trust, then it would explain basically all
the difference between the per capita income of the United States and
Somalia," ventures Steve Knack, a senior economist at the World Bank
who has been studying the economics of trust for over a decade. That
suggests that trust is worth $12.4 trillion dollars a year to the U.S.,
which, in case you are wondering, is 99.5% of this country's income. ***

 

Above all, trust enables people to do business with each other. Doing business is what creates wealth. ***

 

Economists
distinguish between the personal, informal trust that comes from being
friendly with your neighbors and the impersonal, institutionalized
trust that lets you give your credit card number out over the Internet.

Similarly, market psychologists Richard L. Peterson M.D. and Frank Murtha, Ph.D. wrote in October:

Trust is the oil in the engine of capitalism, without it, the engine seizes up.

Confidence is like the gasoline, without it the machine won't move.

Trust
is gone: there is no longer trust between counterparties in the
financial system. Furthermore, confidence is at a low. Investors have
lost their confidence in the ability of shares to provide decent returns
(since they haven't).

Two professors of finance write:

The
drop in trust, we believe, is a major factor behind the deteriorating
economic conditions. To demonstrate its importance, we launched the
Chicago Booth/Kellogg School Financial Trust Index. Our first set of
data—based on interviews conducted at the end of December 2008—shows
that between September and December, 52 percent of Americans lost trust
in the banks. Similarly, 65 percent lost trust in the stock market. A
BBB/Gallup poll that surveyed a similar sample of Americans last April
confirms this dramatic drop. At that time, 42 percent of Americans
trusted financial institutions, versus 34 percent in our survey today,
while 53 percent said they trusted U.S. companies, versus just 12
percent today.

 

As trust declines, so does Americans’ willingness
to invest their money in the financial system. Our data show that
trust in the stock market affects people’s intention to buy stocks,
even after accounting for expectations of future stock-market
performance. Similarly, a person’s trust in banks predicts the
likelihood that he will make a run on his bank in a moment of crisis:
25 percent of those who don’t trust banks withdrew their deposits and
stored them as cash last fall, compared with only 3 percent of those
who said they still trusted the banks. Thus, trust in financial
institutions is a key factor for the smooth functioning of capital
markets and, by extension, the economy. Changes in trust matter.

They quote a Nobel laureate economist on the subject:

“Virtually
every commercial transaction has within itself an element of trust,”
writes economist Kenneth Arrow, a Nobel laureate. When we deposit money
in a bank, we trust that it’s safe. When a company orders goods, it
trusts its counterpart to deliver them in good faith. Trust facilitates
transactions because it saves the costs of monitoring and screening; it
is an essential lubricant that greases the wheels of the economic
system.

And a distinguished international group of
economists (Giancarlo Corsetti, Michael P. Devereux, Luigi Guiso, John
Hassler, Gilles Saint-Paul, Hans-Werner Sinn, Jan-Egbert Sturm and
Xavier Vives) have written a brief essay arguing:

Public distrust of bankers and financial markets has risen dramatically with the financial crisis. This column argues that this loss
of trust in the financial system played a critical role in the
collapse of economic activity that followed. To undo the damage,
financial regulation needs to focus on restoring that trust.

They note:

Trust
is crucial in many transactions and certainly in those involving
financial exchanges. The massive drop in trust associated with this
crisis will therefore have important implications for the future of
financial markets. Data show that in the late 1970s, the percentage of
people who reported having full trust in banks, brokers, mutual funds or
the stock market was around 40%; it had sunk to around 30% just before
the crisis hit, and collapsed to barely 5% afterwards. It is now even
lower than the trust people have in other people (randomly selected of
course).

Time Magazine notes:

Traditionally, gold has been a store of value when citizens do not trust their government politically or economically.

In other words, the government's political actions affect investments, such as gold, and thus the broader economy.

Trust Is At An All-Time Low

Unfortunately, the public's trust in government as a whole (and see this and this), the justice system, bankers, and the corporate media are at all-time lows.

Why?

Partly because the government has been repeatedly caught lying.

The
government repeatedly said about the subprime crisis, banking crisis,
debt crisis, mortgage crisis, and other economic crises:

  • "It's contained"
  • "We've got it under control"

and

  • "We're going to fix it".

It wasn't, and they didn't ... and so people have lost trust in the government.

But it's not just the economy. The government also got caught making false claims that:

  • That the government doesn't spy on Americans (it did even before 9/11), Americans don't torture, etc.

But
there's another important reason for Americans' lack of trust in our
government and our economy: the failure to prosecute the criminals.

Prosecuting the Criminals and Launching REAL Investigations Is Necessary to Restore Trust

One of the leading business schools in America - the Wharton School of Business - has written an essay
on the psychological causes and solutions to the economic crisis.
Wharton points out that restoring trust is the key to recovery, and that
trust cannot be restored until wrongdoers are held accountable:

According to David M. Sachs, a training and supervision analyst at the Psychoanalytic Center of Philadelphia, the
crisis today is not one of confidence, but one of trust. "Abusive
financial practices were unchecked by personal moral controls that
prohibit individual criminal behavior, as in the case of [Bernard]
Madoff, and by complex financial manipulations, as in the case of AIG."
The public, expecting to be protected from such abuse, has suffered a
trauma of loss similar to that after 9/11.
"Normal expectations of what is safe and dependable were abruptly
shattered," Sachs noted. "As is typical of post-traumatic states,
planning for the future could not be based on old assumptions about
what is safe and what is dangerous. A radical reversal of how to be
gratified occurred."

 

People
now feel more gratified saving money than spending it, Sachs suggested.
They have trouble trusting promises from the government because they
feel the government has let them down.

 

He framed his argument
with a fictional patient named Betty Q. Public, a librarian with two
teenage children and a husband, John, who had recently lost his job.
"She felt betrayed because she and her husband had invested
conservatively and were double-crossed by dishonest, greedy businessmen,
and now she distrusted the government that had failed to protect them
from corporate dishonesty. Not only that, but she had little trust in
things turning around soon enough to enable her and her husband to
accomplish their previous goals.

 

"By no means a sophisticated
economist, she knew ... that some people had become fantastically
wealthy by misusing other people's money -- hers included," Sachs said.

"In short, John and Betty had done everything right and were being
punished, while the dishonest people were going unpunished."

 

Helping
an individual recover from a traumatic experience provides a useful
analogy for understanding how to help the economy recover from its own
traumatic experience, Sachs pointed out. The public will need to "hold the perpetrators of the economic disaster responsible and take what actions they can to prevent them from harming the economy again." In addition, the public will have to see proof that government and business leaders can behave responsibly before they will trust them again, he argued.

Note that Sachs urges "hold[ing] the perpetrators of the economic disaster responsible." In other words, just "looking forward" and promising to do things differently isn't enough.

Many high-level economists agree.

Economists such as William Black and James Galbraith have repeatedly said that we cannot solve the economic crisis unless we throw the criminals who committed fraud in jail.

Nobel prize winning economist George Akerlof has demonstrated
that failure to punish white collar criminals - and instead bailing
them out- creates incentives for more economic crimes and further
destruction of the economy in the future. See this, this and this.

Nobel prize winning economists Joseph Stiglitz and George Akerlof agree.

Indeed, polls show that:

  • Americans want those who committed financial fraud to be prosecuted

Remember, distrust in the political actions
of those in Washington D.C. undermines the economy. Therefore, the
economy will not recover until the economic criminals are prosecuted,
and there are real investigations into 9/11 (even the 9/11 Commissioners
themselves think there should be more investigation: see this and this), the Iraq war, torture, spying on Americans and other government failures.

 

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Sun, 11/14/2010 - 22:30 | 726828 tony bonn
tony bonn's picture

unfortunately ms betty public is not going to see satisfaction since the government is owned by the sociopaths who caused the financial titanic. you should have seen the smug assholes on jesse ventura's show as they explained that until the system is changed they would continue to exploit it. the arrogance and hautiness of those punks was breath taking. thugs are taking taxpayer supplied bonuses even when their company stole money through the backdoor of aig to save their grossly mismanaged company. and one of the punks argued that blankenfein's pay was justified because some major league baseball was paid 35 million usd.

yes the entire financial imbroglio is related to enron which is related to 9/11....asshole david rockefeller can preen about grandpa and his baptist religion but any religious pimp can don sheep's clothing just as jim and tammy faye baker proved. they are the puppet masters of the fed and bailout nation. until the 9/11 fraud is exposed the financial fraud will persist. just as the jfk fraud lives.

too big to fail is tyranny.

ps. i loved the smarmy answer from the goldman sachs squid who responded, "no comment" when governor ventura asked if the building in front of which they were standing was goldman sach's new headquarters. 2.3 billion usd worth of headquarters.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 21:42 | 726746 Money 4 Nothing
Money 4 Nothing's picture

"Buzzy" Crongaurd.. only thing you have to know about 9-11. Corruption make me sick. What you find out is that there was alot of people that knew it was comming and either didn't say anything about it, profited or both. It was the advent for DHS and they have nothng to do with outside intellegence, only inside.

 

 Conspiracy scientist..

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 21:12 | 726712 CitizenPete
CitizenPete's picture

Great Post GW - as usual I agree with you.  You say what I believe to be common sense for anyone with half a brain.

 

I thought the Lame Stream Media coverage of the www.Buildingwhat.org 9/11 truth campaign was a key moment in reaching sheople who watch Faux news.  What did you think about it? 

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jAHqwa3ckjY

 

 

When the people fear government, you have TYRANNY

When the government fears the people, you have LIBERTY

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 21:02 | 726696 celticgold
celticgold's picture

 trust this....All the wars , they will be fought again...

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 20:53 | 726677 ShankyS
ShankyS's picture

Thanks GW. Great post as always. Keep the full court press on 'em.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 20:12 | 726611 Cammy Le Flage
Cammy Le Flage's picture

What government can anyone trust? These conversations are getting boring. I don't know if there is a government in existence today that can be trusted anywhere. It is obviously human nature to create such nastiness. Yawn.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 21:30 | 726743 Uncle Remus
Uncle Remus's picture

Well, you can start smaller.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 19:56 | 726591 InsanePonziClown
InsanePonziClown's picture

here's a new old one, local news, local convenience gas stations are now putting charges on your ccard for shit you didn't buy, ie, snacks, coffee, crackers, etc.............that use to be a crime stealing, now it's standard practice, from large supposedly reputable companies

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 19:09 | 726507 Anal Picnic
Anal Picnic's picture

Jesus will come back and set the tables straight. Says so in the Bible.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 20:56 | 726686 weinerdog43
weinerdog43's picture

Ba'al says that he is going to kick Jeebus' ass.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 18:53 | 726481 10044
10044's picture

and NOW.... GERALDO IS A BELIEVER:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T_gE4wZEh0g

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 18:58 | 726487 dizzyfingers
dizzyfingers's picture

He's been changing, evolving. Probably because he has kids? Kid?

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 18:48 | 726463 dizzyfingers
dizzyfingers's picture

Found these video clips at www.dailybail.com:

http://dailybail.com/home/there-are-no-words-to-describe-the-following-part-ii.html « There Are No Words To Describe The Following Part II »

WHO IS KEEPING TRACK OF THE TRILLIONS?

If you're pressed for time, start watching at the 3-minute mark.  Alan Grayson questions Elizabeth Coleman, Inspector General of the Federal Reserve.

Editor's Note:  Until the day Bernanke is indicted for crimes against humanity, all we can do is create awareness. 

The most effective strategy is an email campaign.

Also:

http://dailybail.com/home/peter-schiff-of-course-were-not-going-to-pay-back-the-chines.html

"Of course we're not going to pay back the Chinese: Honesty from Peter Schiff:

 

 

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 16:58 | 726313 trav7777
trav7777's picture

Complete bullshit.  GW, don't post crap like this.

Enough of the fking 911 conspiracy BS and there is NO connection between it and the economy which is being driven by contractionary forces due to oil peak.

the economy WILL NOT RECOVER no matter how many fucking jackasses we put in jail, no matter how many "truth commissions" we found, no matter how much money is printed.

It's time to ACCEPT that we have entered a NEW era where aggregate contraction is the norm.  Any article that does not admit this a priori is a waste of time.

CONFIDENCE does not power cars or melt steel.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 18:55 | 726482 dizzyfingers
dizzyfingers's picture

Dear trav:

I used to think the same as you regarding the unconnectedness of things, but not anymore -- and not just because of one or two articles but because I've thought deeply about many things I've been reading with an open mind. Oddly, things do fit together, not in a conspiratorial way as meant today, but in a sort of horrible cascade of logic if one keeps track long enough. I also feel frustrated depressed and angry but I think it's important to keep our wits about us and know everything we can because I believe we're going to have to fight for our lives, one way or another. dz

More articles (sorry):

The JFK Assassination and 9/11: the Designated Suspects in Both Cases

by Peter Dale Scott   Global Research, July 5, 2008  

Global Research recently published my essay entitled  9/11, Deep State Violence and the Hope of Internet Politics (appended below at *&*) In this article, I argue that 9/11 should be analyzed as a deep event (an event not fully aired or understood because of its intelligence connections) and above all as one of a series of deep events which from time to time have frustrated peace initiatives or become pretexts for war.The War Conspiracy. As The War Conspiracy: JFK, 9/11, and the Deep Politics of War, it is due to be published by the Mary Ferrell Foundation Press in August 2008.

I wish to summarize again the first striking similarity between 11/22/63 and of 9/11/01: the dubious detective work on those two days. Less than fifteen minutes after the President’s assassination, the height and weight of Kennedy’s alleged killer was posted.

1 Before the last of the hijacked planes crashed on 9/11, the FBI told Richard Clarke that they had a list of alleged hijackers.2

In the case of Oswald, within fifteen minutes of the assassination and long before Oswald was picked up in the Texas Theater, Inspector Sawyer of the Dallas police put out on the police radio network, and possibly other networks, a description of the killer – "About 30, 5’10", 165 pounds."

3 As noted, this height and weight exactly matched the measurements attributed to Lee Harvey Oswald in Oswald’s FBI file, and also in CIA documents about him.4

The announced height and weight were however different from Oswald’s actual measurements, as recorded by the Dallas police after his arrest: 5’9 1/2", 131 pounds.

5 More importantly, there is no credible source for the posted measurements from any witness in Dallas. (The witness said to have spotted him, Howard Brennan, failed to identify Oswald in a line-up.)6 This leaves the possibility that the measurements were taken from existing files on Oswald, rather than from any observations in Dallas on November 22. If so, someone with access to those files may have already designated Oswald as the culprit, before there was any evidence to connect him to the crime.

A similar situation pertains to the alleged hijackers on 9/11. For example, shortly afterwards men in Saudi Arabia complained that "the hijackers' `personal details’" released by the FBI -- "including name, place, date of birth and occupation -- matched their own."

7 One of them, Saeed al-Ghamdi, claimed further that an alleged photograph shown on CNN (of an alleged Flight 93 hijacker with the same name) was in fact a photograph of himself. He speculated "that CNN had probably got the picture from the Flight Safety flying school he attended in Florida."8

If the above information is accurate, then the details posted by the FBI and CNN about the alleged hijackers cannot have derived from the events of 9/11, with which the survivors in Saudi Arabia would appear to have been uninvolved. Once again this leaves the strong possibility that the details were taken from existing files, rather than from empirical observations on September 11.

9

And some of the hijackers, like Lee Harvey Oswald, may have been in CIA files for a special reason: because the CIA had an operational interest in them.

Internal CIA Evidence of Operational Interest in Oswald and the Hijackers

I have speculated that Oswald, like the al-Qaeda trainer Ali Mohamed, might have been a double agent reporting to the FBI about the terrorist group (Alpha 66) with which some law enforcement officers associated him.

I would like now to discuss more unequivocal evidence, from internal CIA records, about an operational

CIA interest in first Oswald and later two of the alleged al-Qaeda hijackers, Nawaz al-Hazmi and Khalid al-Mihdar. In 2001 as in 1963 the CIA inexplicably withheld information about the subjects from the FBI, which ought categorically to have received it. The anomalies are extreme.

This is now easy to show in the case of Oswald. On October 10, 1963, six

weeks before the assassination of John F. Kennedy, CIA Headquarters sent out two messages about Oswald, a teletype to the FBI, State, and Navy, and a cable to the chief of the CIA’s Mexico City station. Both messages contained false and mutually contradictory statements, and also withheld known facts of great potential importance.

10 The teletype to the FBI withheld the obviously significant information that Oswald had reportedly met in Mexico City with a Soviet Vice-Consul, Valeriy Kostikov, who was believed by CIA officers to be an officer of the KGB.11

One CIA officer, Jane Roman, helped draft both messages. In 1995 she was confronted by two interviewers with irrefutable evidence that she had signed off on erroneous information about Oswald in the CIA cable to Mexico City. After much questioning, she finally admitted, "I’m signing off on something I know isn’t true." One of the interviewers, John Newman, then asked her, "‘Is this indicative of some sort of operational interest in Oswald’s file?’ ‘Yes,’ Roman replied. ‘To me it’s indicative of a keen interest in Oswald held very closely on the need-to-know basis.’" She later repeated, "I would think there was definitely some operational reason to withhold it [the information at CIA headquarters on Oswald], if it was not sheer administrative error, when you see all the people who signed off on it."

12

Other CIA officers withheld important information from the FBI in January 2000, with respect to Khalid al-Mihdar, who would later be identified as one of the al-Qaeda hijackers on September 11, 2001. The NSA overheard on a Yemeni telephone about a meeting in Malaysia which al-Mihdar would attend, along with Tewfiq bin Attash, the mastermind of the fatal attack on the USS Cole.

13 It notified the CIA but not the FBI. In consequence

[Khalid al-Mihdar’s] Saudi passport – which contained a visa for travel to the United States – was photocopied [in Qatar] and forwarded to CIA headquarters. The information was not shared with FBI headquarters until August 2001. An FBI agent detailed to the Bin Ladin unit at the CIA attempted to share this information with colleagues at FBI Headquarters. A CIA desk officer instructed him not to send the cable with this information. Several hours later, this same desk officer drafted a cable distributed solely within CIA alleging that the visa documents had been shared with the FBI.

14

Lawrence Wright, reviewing this and other significant anomalies, reported in

The Looming Tower the belief among FBI agents following bin Laden "that the agency was protecting Mihdar and [his companion, the alleged 9/11 hijacker Nawaz al-] Hazmi because it hoped to recruit them," or alternatively that "the CIA was running a joint venture with Saudi intelligence" using al-Mihdhar and al-Hazmi.15 Wright himself speculated in a companion essay he wrote for The New Yorker that "The CIA may also have been protecting an overseas operation and was afraid that the F.B.I. would expose it."16

 

The Consequences of the CIA’s Withholding of Evidence

As just noted, the CIA, in its teletype to the FBI of October 10, 1963, withheld the information that Oswald had reportedly met with a KGB officer, Valeriy Kostikov. Former FBI Director Clarence Kelley in his memoir later complained that this failure to inform the FBI was the major reason why Oswald was not put under surveillance on November 22, 1963.

17 In other words, the withholding enabled Oswald to play whatever role he played on that fateful day, even if it was only to become a designated patsy.

FBI officials are even more bitter about the consequences of the withholding of information about al-Mihdar:

They didn’t want the bureau meddling in their business – that’s why they didn’t tell the FBI….They purposely hid from the FBI, purposely refused to tell the bureau that they were following a man in Malaysia who had a visa to come to America….And that’s why September 11 happened. That is why it happened….They have blood on their hands. They have three thousand deaths on their hands.

18

But the CIA withheld information from the FBI about bin Attash (already the subject of a criminal investigation) as well, even when asked by an FBI agent, Ali Soufan, about bin Attash and the Malaysia meeting. According to Wright,

The agency did not respond to his clearly stated request. The fact that the CIA withheld information about the mastermind of the

Cole bombing and the meeting in Malaysia, when directly asked by the FBI, amounted to obstruction of justice in the death of the seventeen American sailors."19

In late August 2001, only days before 9/11, FBI agent Steve Bongardt, complaining about the CIA’s withholding of information about al-Mihdar, correctly predicted in an angry email to the CIA’s bin Laden unit that "someday someone will die."

20

 

The CIA’s Dishonest Efforts to Cover-Up

From the moment Congress, in the 1970s, began to evince an interest in the Kennedy assassination, former CIA officer David Phillips became a vigorous defender of the CIA’s performance. With respect to false information about Oswald in CIA cables both to and from Mexico City (where Phillips was in charge of Cuban affairs for the CIA station), Phillips’s first response was to dismiss Oswald as "a blip" of no interest.

21

A similar defense of the CIA’s failure to act on al-Mihdar was offered to the Congressional Joint Inquiry into 9/11 by the Director of the CIA’s Counterterrorism Center, Cofer Black: "I think that month we watchlisted about 150 people."

22 The same defense was offered by Dale Watson, the FBI’s former counterterrorism chief:

There were a lot of red flags prior to 9/11….So it’s a mass of information and it’s a sea of threats, and it’s like working against a maze. If you know where the end point of a maze is, it’s certainly easier to work your way back to the starting point than trying to go through the maze and sort out all the red flags.

23

The problem with this excuse is that both Oswald and al-Mihdar were singled out for special CIA attention, not left floating in a sea of red flags. The cable to Mexico City which Jane Roman signed off on was not handled routinely, it was sent for signature to the CIA’s Assistant Deputy Director for Plans, Thomas Karamessines. And in the case of al-Mihdar in Malaysia, back in 2000

CIA leaders were so convinced about the potential significance of the al Qaeda meeting in Malaysia, they not only set up surveillance of it, but provided regular updates to the FBI director [Louis Freeh], the head of the CIA [George Tenet], and the national security advisor [Samuel Berger].

24

That Freeh and Berger were being notified at the top about the Malaysia meeting (at the same time that the regular FBI bureaucracy was being cut out) is confirmed in accounts by Terry McDermott and Philip Shenon.

25

CIA officials testified falsely to congressional committees with respect to both Oswald and al-Mihdar. James Angleton was asked by the staff of the House Select Committee on Assassinations about a memoir written by the CIA’s station chief in Mexico City, Win Scott, and later personally retrieved for the Agency after Scott’s death by Angleton himself. Angleton testified that Scott’s "manuscript was fictional and did not include a chapter on Oswald." In fact, according to Jefferson Morley, "The only surviving manuscript is clearly nonfictional and does have a chapter on Oswald."

26

Both George Tenet and Cofer Black testified before the Congressional Joint Inquiry into 9/11 that the FBI

had been granted access to the information linking al-Mihdar and Tewfiq bin Attash (alias Khallad), the mastermind of the Cole bombing. The 9/11 Commission, after a lengthy review of the matter, concluded "this was not the case."27

 

The CIA, Oswald, and Al-Mihdar: Suppression of Vital Records

That the CIA regards its relationship to the suspects Oswald and al-Mihdar as sensitive is further illustrated by its suppression of vital evidence with respect to both. Although in the 1990s all government agencies were required by law to submit their Oswald-related documents to the Assassination Records Review Board, the CIA has been vigorously resisting pressure to do this in the case of former CIA officer George Joannides. In 1963 Joannides was the case officer for AMSPELL, the CIA’s operation in support of the Cuban exile group DRE (Directorio Revolucionario Estudiantil). In August 1963 the DRE was in contact with Oswald and participated with him in a radio broadcast which was later distributed with CIA help throughout Latin America.

28

According to Jefferson Morley, "four decades after the fact, the most important AMSPELL records are missing from CIA archives – perhaps intentionally." Monthly reports on DRE activities were filed by CIA case officers Ross Crozier and William Kent, and these records were declassified by the ARRB for the periods September 1960-November 1962 and after May 1964.

But the board was unable to locate any monthly AMSPELL reports from December 1962 to April 1964. There was a seventeen-month gap in the AMSPELL records, which coincided exactly with the period in which George Joannides handled the group.

29

With respect to 9/11, all that is known about suppression so far has to do with the public record. Here it is striking that the Report of the Joint Inquiry by Congress into 9/11 has one glaring redaction of twenty-eight pages, dealing with "sources of foreign support for some of the September 11

th hijackers while they were in the United States." Press reports have specified that this refers to Saudi money which reached al-Mihdar and al-Hazmi in 2000 while they were in San Diego. According to committee cochair Senator Bob Graham,

The draft contained a twenty-eight page passage that detailed evidence that Saudis in the United States – Saudi government "spies," Graham called them – had provided financial and logistical support to [al-Mihdar and al-Hazmi] while they lived in Southern California.

30

Similarly the 9/11 Commission failed to deal with the information on an FBI "hijacker timeline" that al-Mihdar and al-Hazmi were met at the airport on their first arrival in the United States by Omar al-Bayoumi, the transmitter of the Saudi funds, whom Graham claimed was obviously "a low-ranking Saudi intelligence agent."

31 The FBI findings were leaked in an early story in Newsweek:

At the airport, they were swept up by a gregarious fellow Saudi, Omar al-Bayoumi, who had been living in the United States for several years. Al-Bayoumi drove the two men to San Diego, threw a welcoming party and arranged for the visitors to get an apartment next to his. He guaranteed the lease, and plunked down $1,550 in cash to cover the first two months' rent.

32

One month later, "In January 2003, Graham and the other members of the committee were …the focus of a criminal investigation by the FBI into whether someone on the panel had leaked classified information."

33

The 9/11 Commission avoided this sensitive area. It cited the FBI Chronology a total of 52 times in its footnotes, for example at 493n55, concerning al-Mihdar’s travel from Yemen to the Malaysian meeting. But it suppressed the FBI’s report that al-Bayoumi met al-Mihdar and al-Hazmi on their arrival; and it substituted what Shenon calls an "improbable tale" supplied by al-Bayoumi himself: namely, that he had run into the two men two weeks later by accident "at a halal food restaurant" near Los Angeles.

34

It is clear that two members of the 9/11 Commission staff who redacted this part of the report – Dietrich Snell and Philip Zelikow – were concerned to tone down what junior staffers considered to be "explosive material" on the Saudis.

35 Shenon tells how this section of the 9/11 report was rewritten by Snell and Zelikow, until the text "removed all of the most serious allegations against the Saudis."36

But Snell and Zelikow may have been protecting the CIA as well as the Saudis. We have already noted how Lawrence Wright, looking at the extraordinary CIA record on withholding information about al-Mihdar and al-Hazmi, concluded, "It is also possible, as some FBI investigators suspect, the CIA was running a joint venture with Saudi intelligence."

37

 

Conclusion

It is clear, as everyone who has studied these matters closely and impartially concurs, that there have been cover-ups of the CIA’s relationships to first Oswald and later al-Mihdar – cover-ups which in both cases have not yet been adequately resolved.

A reasonable conclusion from the available evidence is that the cover-ups were in order to conceal prior CIA operational interest in the designated subjects, just as in the case of Ali Mohamed in the early 1990s. It could of course be a coincidence that people of operational interest to the CIA became designated subjects in the deep events of JFK and 9/11. Another, more disturbing possibility is that those responsible for these events knew of the CIA’s operational interest, and exploited it in such a way as to ensure that the government would be embarrassed into covering up what really happened on those days.

A lot of books about 9/11, including my own, have focused on the roles played by Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld on that day. But it is clear that 9/11 involved a USG connection to at least one figure (Ali Mohamed) so sensitive that it had been covered up from the time of the Nosair murder in 1990 and the first World Trade Center bombing in 1993. It is probable that Oswald’s covert USG connections also dated back to the time of his strange release from the U.S. Marine Corps in 1959, enabling him to travel to the Soviet Union.

38

In short there is a substratum of covert operations underlying both events that antedates the presidencies in which they occurred. Thus one should not expect the cover-up of 9/11 in the G.W. Bush administration to dissipate simply because the Democrats take over the White House, just as the Johnson administration’s cover-up of the Kennedy assassination did not dissipate with the election of Richard Nixon.

39

This is said not out of despair, but out of belief in the ultimate resilience and good sense of the American people. The analysis in this book is that America’s involvement in two disastrous wars – first Vietnam and later Iraq – was not an outcome of the people’s will, but rather in large part because of deep events that were used to manipulate that will. Thus this analysis is not an attack on America, but on that manipulative mindset that has twice succeeded in maneuvering America into war.

This dominant mindset is not restricted to intelligence agencies, though it is largely rooted there. Over time it has spread into other parts of government, and has also corrupted large sections of the media and even universities. That the mindset is widespread does not however make it either omnipotent or invincible.

It is important to identify the dominant mindset clearly, if we are ever going to displace it. It is important also to recognize that the dark topics discussed in this book are not representative of America as a whole. In the half century since the CIA’s first adventures in Burma and Laos, America has continued to be, as in the two centuries before it, a source of life-enhancing innovations, such as the computer and the internet.

As Amy Chua has written in her book

Day of Empire,

If America can rediscover the path that has been the secret to its success since its founding and avoid the temptations of empire building, it could remain the world’s hyperpower in the decades to come – not a hyperpower of coercion and military force, but a hyperpower of opportunity, dynamism, and moral force.

40

I have tried to suggest in this book that the key to this rediscovery is the

identification and displacement of the manipulative forces that have maneuvered America, almost unsuspectingly, into two unnecessary and disastrous wars.

If there is any merit to my analysis, then, to isolate those forces, we must press for the truth about both the Kennedy assassination and 9/11.


NOTES


1


Transcript of Dallas Police Channel Two, 12:44 PM; cf. Channel One 12:45 PM,

http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/dpdtapes/; Warren Report 5, 17 Warren Commission Hearings 397, 23 Warren Commission Hearings 916.


2


Clarke, Against All Enemies, 13-14. The list of 19 names, accepted without question by the 9/11 Commission Report, was given by the FBI to the press on September 14, 2001 (Daily Telegraph, September 15, 2001,

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2001/09/15/whunt15.xml).


3


Transcript of Dallas Police Channel Two, 12:44 PM; cf. Channel One 12:45 PM,

http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/dpdtapes/; Warren Report 5, 17 Warren Commission Hearings 397.


4


E.g. Dallas FBI Report from John Fain, May 12, 1960, 17 Warren Commission Hearings 704, NARA #157-10006-10213 ("Height: 5’10" Weight: 165 lbs." [inaccurate description supplied by Marguerite Oswald]); CIA HQ Cable DIR 74830 to Mexico City, 10 Oct 1963, NARA #104-10015-10048, reproduced in John Newman, Oswald and the CIA (New York: Carroll & Graf, 1995), 512 ("five feet ten inches, one hundred sixty five pounds").


5


Fingerprint card dated "11-25-63," 17 Warren Commission Hearings 308.


6


Warren Report 5, 144; Sylvia Meagher, Accessories After the Fact (Mary Ferrell Foundation Press, 2006), 10-13, 78n. After seeing Oswald twice on television, Brennan picked out Oswald in a second lineup (Warren Report, 143).


7


Daily Telegraph, September 23, 2001,

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2001/09/23/widen23.xml.


Cf.

Guardian, September 21 2001,

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2001/sep/21/afghanistan.september112 :" Abdulaziz

Al-Omari has also come forward to say he was not on the flight from Boston that crashed into the north tower of the World Trade Centre. An electrical engineer who works in Saudi Arabia, Mr Al-Omari said he was a student in Denver during the mid-1990s, and that his passport and other papers were stolen in a burglary in the US five years ago. … `The name is my name and the birth date is the same as mine,’ he told Asharq al-Aswat, a London-based Arabic newspaper. `But I am not the one who bombed the World Trade Centre in New York.’"


8


Daily Telegraph, September 23, 2001,

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2001/09/23/widen23.xml.


9


On October 4, 2001, the FBI issued a press release showing what appeared to be photos from surveillance videotape of two hijackers, Mohammed Atta and Abdulaziz Al-Omari, entering Portland Jetport on the morning of September 11, 2001 (FBI Press Release, October 4, 2001,

http://www.fbi.gov/pressrel/pressrel01/100401picts.htm ). If valid, these would constitute evidence from the event itself. However the photos are anomalous, in that they show two time superimposed stamps, one showing 5:45, the other showing 5:53. The photos are not cited as evidence in the 9/11 Commission Report. On July 22, 2004, the date of the release of the 9/11 Commission Report, CNN aired what they said was surveillance videotape of two hijackers, Majed Moqed and Khalid al-Mihdar. entering "at one of the security screening points at Dulles International" (CNN, http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0407/22/lad.04.html ). The authenticity of the videotape has been challenged, however, because it lacks the time and date and location identification normally burned into a surveillance video image (Rowland Morgan and Ian Henshall,

9/11 Revealed: The Unanswered Questions [New York: Carroll and Graf, 2005], 117-19).


10


I have argued that the conflicting messages were part of a so-called "marked card" or "barium meal" test to determine if and where leaks of sensitive information were occurring. This was a familiar technique, and was the responsibility of the CI/SIG or Counterintelligence Special Intelligence Group which drafted the two cables. See Peter Dale Scott, Deep Politics II: The New Revelations in U.S. Government Files,1994-1999 (Ipswich, MA: Mary Ferrell Foundation Press, 2007), 17-18, 92; also Peter Dale Scott, "Oswald and the Hunt for Popov's Mole," The Fourth Decade, III, 3 (March 1996), 3;

www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?absPageId=519798.


11


Peter Dale Scott, Deep Politics II, 30-33.


12


Jefferson Morley, Our Man in Mexico: Winston Scott and the Hidden History of the CIA (Lawrence, KA: University Press of Kansas, 2008), 196-98. See Peter Dale Scott, Deep Politics II, 30-33.


13


Lawrence Wright, The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11 (New York: Knopf, 2006), 310.


14


9/11 Commission Report, 502n44.


15


Wright, The Looming Tower, 312, 313.


16


Lawrence Wright, "The Agent," New Yorker, July 10 and 17, 2006, 68.


17


Clarence M. Kelley, Kelley: The Story of an FBI Director (Kansas City: Andrews, McMeel, & Parker, 1987), 268.


18


James Bamford, A Pretext for War: 9/11, Iraq, and the Abuse of America’s Intelligence Agencies (New York: Doubleday, 2004), 224.


19


Wright, The Looming Tower, 329. In his New Yorker story (p. 70), Wright wrote that "By withholding the picture of Khallad [bin Attash]…the C.I.A. may in effect have allowed the September 11th plot to proceed."


20


9/11 Commission Report, 271; Wright, The Looming Tower, 353-54.


21


David Atlee Phillips, Nightwatch, 139; quoted in Morley, Our Man in Mexico, 184. Morley observes that in the 1970s Phillips offered a total of "four not entirely consistent versions of the story of Oswald’s visit to Mexico City."


22


J. Cofer Black testimony before 9/11 Congressional Joint Inquiry, 107th Cong., 2nd Sess., July 24, 2003.


23


Dale Watson testimony before Joint Inquiry, 107th Cong., 2nd Sess., September 26, 2002.


24


Amy B. Zegart, Flying Blind: The CIA, the FBI, and the Origins of 9/11(Princeton, NJ: Princeton UP, 2007), 117.


25


Terry McDermott, Perfect Soldiers: The Hijackers: Who They Were, Why TheyDid It (New York: HarperCollins, 20050, 294n45; Philip Shenon, The Commission: The Uncensored History of the 9/11 Investigation (New York: Twelve/Hachette, 2008), 141.


26


Morley, Our Man in Mexico, 7, 294.


27


9/11 Commission Report, 267.


28


Peter Dale Scott, Deep Politics and the Death of JFK (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1998), 81-86; Morley, Our Man in Mexico, 170-77.


29


Morley, Our Man in Mexico, 177.


30


Shenon, The Commission, 50-51.


31


Larisa Alexandrovna, "FBI documents contradict 9/11 Commission report," RawStory, February 28, 2008, http://rawstory.com/news/2008/FBI_documents_contradict_Sept._11_Commission_0228.html (met at the airport); Shenon, The Commission, 52 (al-Bayoumi). Al-Bayoumi "apparently did work for Dallah Avco, an aviation-services company with extensive contracts with the Saudi Ministry of Defense and Aviation, headed by Prince Sultan, the father of the Saudi ambassador to the United States, Prince Bandar" ("The Saudi Money Trail," Newsweek, December 2, 2002, http://www.newsweek.com/id/66665).


32


"The Saudi Money Trail," Newsweek, December 2, 2002. The FBI "hijacker timeline" was released by the FBI on February 4, 2008. See Larisa Alexandrovna, "FBI documents contradict 9/11 Commission report, Rawstory.com, February 28, 2008,

http://rawstory.com/news/2008/FBI_documents_contradict_Sept._11_Commission_0228.html.


33


Shenon, The Commission, 54.


34


9/11 Commission Report, 217; Shenon, The Commission, 52-53.

35

Shenon, The Commission, 398.

36

Shenon, The Commission, 398.


37


Wright, The Looming Tower, 313. Looking at the same evidence, Christopher Ketcham has raised an alternative possibility, that "the CIA may have subcontracted to Mossad, given that the agency was both prohibited by law from conducting intelligence operations on U.S. soil, and lacked a pool of competent Arabic-fluent field officers. In such a scenario, the CIA would either have worked actively with the Israelis or quietly abetted an independent operation on U.S. soil…. When in the spring of 2002 the scenario of CIA's domestic subcontracting to foreign intelligence

was posed to the veteran CIA/NSA intelligence operative, with whom I spoke extensively, the operative didn't reject it out of hand" (Christopher Ketcham, "Cheering Movers and Art Student Spies: What Did Israel Know in Advance of the 9/11 Attacks?" CounterPunch, February 7, 2007,

http://www.conspiracyplanet.com/channel.cfm?channelid=73&contentid=4253&page=2 ).


38


Oswald requested a dependency discharge from the Marines in August 1959, "on the ground that his mother needed his support" (Warren Report, 688). Accordingly Marine Lt. A.G. Ayers, Jr. signed a document for Oswald’s release to inactive duty on September 11, 1959 (19 WH 679, cf. 17 WH 762) "by reason of hardship (19 WH 678). However Lt. Ayers should have known that Oswald had no intention of staying in Texas to support his mother; he had already, on September 4, 1959, signed an affidavit in support of Oswald’s passport application "to attend the College of A. Schweitzer, Chur, Switzerland and the Univ of Turku, Turku, Finland" (22 WH 77-79). (It is a sign of some covert intrigue that the language of instruction at the University of Turku was Finnish, a language Oswald did not know.)


39


A significant symptom of this enduring substratum has been the Bush Administration’s protection of Samuel Berger, Clinton’s national security advisor. Berger pleaded guilty in April 2005 to having stolen 9/11 documents from the National Archives (Shenon, The Commission, 414). A condition of his plea bargain was to submit to a Justice Department polygraph test, to determine what documents had been stolen. Republican Congressman Dana Rohrabacher, a long-time critic of CIA operations in Afghanistan, revealed to the House in February 2008 that he had written to the Bush Justice Department, demanding that it administer the polygraph test, and that the Justice Department had rejected his demand (Congressional Record, February 26, 2008, House, pp. H1065-H1072). We have already seen that Berger when in office was receiving regular reports from the CIA about the presence of al-Mihdar and al-Hamzi at the Kuala Lumpur meeting (Zegart, Flying Blind, 117). It is possible that these were the reports he was stealing from the Archives, and that the Justice Department refusal to administer the polygraph test is part of a cover-up to protect the CIA’s relationship to the two Saudis.

40

Amy Chua, Day of Empire: How Hyperpowers Rise to Global Dominance – and Why They Fall (New York: Doubleday, 2007), 342.

 

Peter Dale Scott, a former Canadian diplomat and professor at the University of California, Berkeley, is the author of the forthcoming The War Conspiracy: JFK, 9/11, and the Deep Politics of War, due in August 2008. This previously unpublished essay is the concluding section of the new book, which can be ordered from the Mary Ferrell Foundation Press by clicking here at http://www.maryferrell.org/wiki/index.php/MFF_Store. His website is http://www.peterdalescott.net.

 

 

*&* addendum:

9/11, Deep State Violence and the Hope of Internet Politics

The Deep State and 9/11


by Prof. Peter Dale Scott Global Research, June 11, 2008

The unthinkable – that elements inside the state would conspire with criminals to kill innocent civilians – has become not only thinkable but commonplace in the last century. A seminal example was in French Algeria, where dissident elements of the French armed forces, resisting General de Gaulle’s plans for Algerian independence, organized as the Secret Army Organization and bombed civilians indiscriminately, with targets including hospitals and schools.1 Critics like Alexander Litvinenko, who was subsequently murdered in London in November 2006, have charged that the 1999 bombings of apartment buildings around Moscow, attributed to Chechen separatists, were in fact the work of the Russian secret service (FSB).2

Similar attacks in Turkey have given rise to the notion there of an extra-legal "deep state" – a combination of forces, ranging from former members of the CIA-organized Gladio organization, to "a vast matrix of security and intelligence officials, ultranationalist members of the Turkish underworld and renegade former members of the [Kurdish separatist] PKK."3 The deep state, financed in part by Turkey’s substantial heroin traffic, has been accused of killing thousands of civilians, in incidents such as the lethal bomb attack in November 2005 on a bookshop in Semdinli. This attack, initially attributed to the Kurdish separatist PKK, turned out to have been committed by members of Turkey's paramilitary police intelligence service, together with a former PKK member turned informer.4 On April 23, 2008, the former Interior Minister Mehmet Agar was ordered to stand trial for his role in this dirty war during the 1990s.5

In my book The Road to 9/11, I have argued that there has existed, at least since World War Two if not earlier, an analogous American deep state, also combining intelligence officials with elements from the drug-trafficking underworld.6 I also pointed to recent decades of collaboration between the U.S. deep state and al-Qaeda, a terrorist underworld whose drug-trafficking activities have been played down in the 9/11 Commission Report and the mainstream U.S. media.7

Still to be explained is the suppressed anomalous fact that al-Qaeda’s top trainer on airplane hijackings, Ali Mohamed, was simultaneously a double-agent reporting to the FBI, and almost certainly still maintained a connection to the CIA which had used him as an agent and helped bring him to this country in the 1980s.8 It is not disputed that Ali Mohamed organized the Embassy bombing in Kenya; and that he did so after the RCMP, who had detained him in Vancouver in the presence of another known terrorist, released Mohamed on instructions from the FBI.9

From this historic background of collaboration, I would offer a hypothesis for further investigation: that the American deep state is somehow implicated with al-Qaeda in the atrocity of 9/11; and that this helps explain the conspicuous involvement of the CIA and other U.S. agencies in the ensuing cover-up.

Sibel Edmonds, the Turkish-American who was formerly an FBI translator, has publicly linked both al-Qaeda and American officials to the Turkish heroin trafficking that underlies the Turkish deep state. Although she has been prevented from speaking directly by an extraordinary court order,10 her allegations have been summarized by Daniel Ellsberg:

Al Qaeda, she's been saying to congress, according to these interviews, is financed 95% by drug money - drug traffic to which the US government shows a blind eye, has been ignoring, because it very heavily involves allies and assets of ours - such as Turkey, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Pakistan, Afghanistan - all the 'Stans - in a drug traffic where the opium originates in Afghanistan, is processed in Turkey, and delivered to Europe where it furnishes 96% of Europe's heroin, by Albanians, either in Albania or Kosovo - Albanian Muslims in Kosovo - basically the KLA, the Kosovo Liberation Army which we backed heavily in that episode at the end of the century….Sibel says that suitcases of cash have been delivered to the Speaker of the House, Dennis Hastert, at his home, near Chicago, from Turkish sources, knowing that a lot of that is drug money.11

In 2005 Sibel Edmonds’ charges were partly aired in Vanity Fair. There it was revealed that she had had access to FBI wiretaps of conversations among members of the American-Turkish Council (ATC), about bribing elected US officials, and about "what sounded like references to large-scale drug shipments and other crimes."12

9/11: Not a Coup d’Etat, but One of a Series of American Deep Events

In 2003 Italian journalist Maurizio Blondet published a book entitled 11 settembre: colpo di stato (September 11th: A Coup d’Etat, [Milan, Effedieffe, 2002]).13 Over the years the view of 9/11 as a "coup d’état" has been endorsed by a number of observers, including Gore Vidal.14 In May 2008 a Google search for "coup d’état + 9/11" yielded 297,000 hits. One of the most recent hits, from Ed Encho, has suggested that the heart of the coup may have been the introduction on 9/11, without debate or even notice, of so-called "Continuity of Government" (COG) orders – secret orders still unknown but with constitutional implications.15 Unquestionably, as the 9/11 Commission Report states, COG, the fruit of two decades of secret Cheney-Rumsfeld collaboration, was implemented on 9/11.16 As we shall see, it is not clear just what this implied, either then or today. But journalists have claimed that earlier versions of COG plans involved suspension of the constitution.17

However to call 9/11 a coup d’état exaggerates the difference between the current weakened condition of the public state, and the prior state of affairs that has been building for years, indeed for decades, towards just such a dénouement. For half a century the constitution and laws of the open or public state have been first evaded, then eroded, then increasingly challenged and subverted, by the forces of the deep state. I wish to suggest that this erosion has been achieved in part through a series of important deep events in post-war American history – events aspects of which (it is clear from the outset) will be ignored or suppressed in the mainstream media.

Recent history has seen a number of such events, such as the assassination of John F. Kennedy, that are so inexplicable by the public notions of American politics that most Americans tend not even to think of them. Instead most accept the official surface explanations for them, even if they suspect these are not true. Or if others say they believe that "Oswald acted alone," they may do so in the same comforting but irrational state of mind that believes God will reward the righteous and punish the wicked.

Thus on the one hand we must see that America has reached a condition where traditional civil rights are flagrantly restricted as never before – as when former Attorney General Gonzalez told a shocked congressional committee that "There is no expressed grant of habeas corpus in the Constitution."18 At the same time, we must see that 9/11, as an unexplained or deep event nudging us away from constitutional normalcy and into an unnecessary permanent state of war, is not unprecedented. It is one of a series of similar unexplained events, all of which have had similar results, reaching back to the second Tonkin Gulf incident, the Kennedy assassination, even the misremembered outset of the Korean War.

The simulated "surprise" of the Bush administration to the 9/11 attack is indeed analogous to the simulated "surprise" of the Truman administration to the outbreak of war in Korea on June 25, 1950. The historian Bruce Cumings, in a volume of 957 pages, has recalled the curious behavior in previous weeks of high levels in Washington:

The CIA predicts, on June 14, a capability for invasion [of South Korea] at any time. No one disputes that. Five days later, it predicts an impending invasion. . . . Now, Corson … says that the June 14 report leaked out to "informed circles," and thus "it was feared that administration critics in Congress might publicly raise the issue. In consequence, a White House decision of sorts was made to brief Congress that all was well in Korea." . . . Would it not be the expectation that Congress would be told that all was not well in Korea? That is, unless a surprised and outraged Congress is one’s goal.19

In his exhaustive analysis of the war’s origins, Cumings sees this U.S. deception by high level officials as a response to manipulated events, which in turn were the response to the threat of an imminent expulsion of the Chinese Nationalist KMT from Taiwan, together with a peaceful reunification of Korea. The details are complex, but of relevance to 9/11, not least because of the involvement of the opium-financed KMT:

By late June, [U.S. Secretary of State Dean] Acheson and Truman were the only high officials still balking at a defense of the ROC [the "Republic of China," the KMT Chinese Nationalist remnant on Taiwan]….Sir John Pratt, an Englishman with four decades of experience in the China consular service and the Far Eastern Office, wrote the following in 1951: "The Peking Government planned to liberate Formosa on July 15 and, in the middle of June, news reached the State Department that the Syngman Rhee government in South Korea was disintegrating. The politicians on both sides of the thirty-eighth parallel were preparing a plan to throw Syngman Rhee out of office and set up a unified government for all Korea."….Thus the only way out, for Chiang [Kai-shek, the KMT leader], was for Rhee to attack the North, which ultimately made Acheson yield and defend Nationalist China [on Taiwan].20

Meanwhile, in South Korea,

an Australian embassy representative sent in daily reports in late June, saying that "patrols were going in from the South to the North, endeavouring to attract the North back in pursuit. Plimsoll warned that this could lead to war and it was clear that there was some degree of American involvement as well." [According to former Australian prime minister Gough Whitlam,] "The evidence was sufficiently strong for the Australian Prime Minister to authorize a cable to Washington urging that no encouragement be given to the South Korean government."21

Cumings also notes the warning in late April from an American diplomat, Robert Strong, that "desperate measures may be attempted by [the Chinese] Nationalist Government to involve [U.S.] in [a] shooting war as [a] means of saving its own skin."22 In chapters too complex to summarize here, he chronicles the intrigues of a number of Chiang’s backers, including the China Lobby in Washington, General Claire Chennault and his then nearly defunct airline CAT (later Air America), former OSS chief General William Donovan, and in Japan General MacArthur and his intelligence chief Charles Willoughby. He notes the visit of two of Chiang’s generals to Seoul, one of them on a U.S. military plane from MacArthur’s headquarters. And he concludes that "Chiang may have found …on the Korean peninsula, the provocation of a war that saved his regime [on Taiwan] for two more decades:"

Anyone who has read this text closely to this point, and does not believe that Willoughby, Chiang, [Chiang’s emissary to Seoul, General] Wu Tieh Cheng, Yi P?m-s?k, [Syngman] Rhee, Kim S?k-won, Tiger Kim, and their ilk were capable of a conspiracy to provoke a war, cannot be convinced by any evidence.

He adds that anti-conspiratorialist Americans "are prey to what might be called the fallacy of insufficient cynicism" -- a charge that may be revived, if it can ever be shown that 9/11 also was "a conspiracy to provoke a war."23

9/11, Tonkin Gulf, and the JFK Assassination

In 1964 Congress passed the Tonkin Gulf Resolution, in response to Secretary of Defense McNamara’s assurances that there was "unequivocal proof" of a second "unprovoked attack" on U.S. destroyers. Today we know not only that there was no such second attack, but that the combined harassments of CIA-controlled PT boats and US destroyers in North Vietnamese waters were so provocative as to invite one. George Ball, who at the time was an Undersecretary of State, later commented in a 1977 BBC radio interview that

Many of the people who were associated with the war were looking for any excuse to initiate bombing. The sending of a destroyer up the Tonkin Gulf was primarily for provocation. ... There was a feeling that if the destroyer got into some trouble, that it would provide the provocation we needed.24

The Tonkin Gulf deep event presents a number of similarities to the Korean deep event in 1950. Tonkin Gulf also can be analyzed into three different phases: the deception of Congress by high level officials, preceded by provocative intrigues in Asia, and reinforced by deceptive manipulation of reports inside the NSA. (All three phases can also be discerned in the provocative maneuvers in 1968 of the U.S.S. Pueblo, in an incident or deep event that did not lead, as some clearly wished, to a military response against North Korea.)25

We now know from a recently declassified in-house NSA history that on August 4, 1964, NSA possessed 122 pieces of SIGINT (signals intelligence) which taken together indicated clearly that there was no second North Vietnamese attack on August 4: "Hanoi’s navy was engaged in nothing that night but the salvage of two of the boats damaged on 2 August." But of these 122 pieces, the White House was supplied with only fifteen – "only SIGINT that supported the claim that the communists had attacked the two destroyers."26

Meanwhile, over at CIA, "By the afternoon of Aug. 4, the CIA’s expert analyst on North Vietnam … had concluded that probably no one had fired on the U.S. ships. He included a paragraph to that effect in the item he wrote for the Current Intelligence Bulletin, which would be wired to the White House and other key agencies and appear in print the next morning. And then something unique happened. The Director of the Office of Current Intelligence, a very senior officer …, descended into the bowels of the agency to order the paragraph deleted. He explained: `We’re not going to tell LBJ that now. He has already decided to bomb North Vietnam’"27

The parallel events in NSA and CIA illustrate how a shared bureaucratic mindset, or propensity for military escalation, can generate synergistic responses in diverse milieus, without there having necessarily been any conspiratorial collusion between the two agencies.

Of more than passing interest is the fact that the CIA in the 1960s still had senior officers who believed that sooner or later a showdown with the Chinese Communists was inevitable, and had renewed General Chennault’s old proposal for a large-scale landing by Chiang on the Chinese mainland.28 This seems to explain a series of manipulative escalatory moves in Laos, shortly before the Tonkin Gulf incidents, with a similar momentum towards expanding the U.S. war beyond South Vietnam. In 1963-64 one notes again, as in 1950, the intriguing of local KMT elements, in this case forces directly involved in the opium traffic.29

As for 9/11, the paradox between surface tranquility and alarming warnings is as evident as it was in 1950. Even the 9/11 Commission Report acknowledges that in the summer of 2001 "the system was blinking red" for an al-Qaeda attack. Its record amply refutes Condoleezza Rice’s claim in May 2002 that "I don't think anybody could have predicted that these people would … try to use an airplane as a missile, a hijacked airplane as a missile."30 Yet in the midst of this crisis the CIA in August 2001 was flagrantly withholding crucial evidence from the FBI that, if shared, would have assisted the FBI in its current efforts to locate one of the alleged hijackers, Khaled al-Mihdar. This withholding provoked an FBI agent to predict at that time, accurately, that "someday someone will die."31

As I describe in the forthcoming expanded reissue of my book The War Conspiracy, this culpable withholding of crucial evidence from the FBI by the CIA closely parallels the CIA’s withholding from the FBI of important information about Lee Harvey Oswald in October 1963. Former FBI Director Clarence Kelley in his memoir later complained that this withholding was the major reason why Oswald was not put under surveillance on November 22, 1963.32 Without these withholdings, in other words,

neither the Kennedy assassination nor 9/11 could have unfolded in the manner in which they did.

And without understanding the details, we can safely conclude that operations of the CIA – the deep state -- were somehow implicated, whether innocently or conspiratorially, in the background of both the JFK assassination and 9/11. With respect to the CIA’s withholding of information from the FBI about Oswald, even a former CIA officer, Jane Roman, has agreed that this indicates "some sort of [CIA] operational interest in Oswald’s file."33 Lawrence Wright, commenting in The New Yorker about the CIA’s analogous withholding of information about al-Mihdar, has reached the similar conclusion that "The CIA may also have been protecting an overseas operation and was afraid that the F.B.I. would expose it."34

In short, from this perspective, 9/11 is not wholly without precedent in U.S. history. It should be seen not as a unique departure from orderly constitutional government – a coup d’état – but as yet another unexplained deep event of the sort that has continued to erode the American constitutional system of open politics and civil liberties.

9/11: Not Just Another Deep Event, But a Constitutional Deep Event

It is however a deep event of a new and unprecedented order. Deep events related to political control of this country are far more frequent than most of us like to recognize. Since the conspicuous assassinations of the 1960s and early 1970s – all deep events -- at least six politicians have also died in single-plane crashes. Although many of these crashes were probably accidental, it is striking that only one Republican has died in this fashion, as opposed to five Democrats.35 Official accounts of the deaths of three of these Democrats – Senator Paul Wellstone, and Congressmen Hale Boggs and Nick Begich, have been challenged, as has the very suspicious "accidental" death in a 1970 single-plane crash of UAW labor leader Walter Reuther.36

Of these deep events, some – notably the JFK assassination -- stand out as having had structural impact on American political society. America’s three major wars since World War Two – Korea, Vietnam, and now Iraq – have all been preceded by deep events that have cumulatively contributed to America’s current war-based economy. Looked at in this way, 9/11 falls into a sequence in which it is preceded by the Second Tonkin Gulf Incident and by the intrigues and lies in June 1950 concerning Korea.

But of all these deep events, 9/11 can be seen as the first to have had not only structural but constitutional implications. For with the introduction of COG before 10:00 AM on September 11, 2001, the status of the U.S. constitution in American society has changed, in ways that still prevail. What COG means in practice is still largely unknown to us. It is clear though that in abridging habeas corpus and the Fourth Amendment, the innovations after COG and 9/11 made the U.S. constitutional situation more like the situation in Britain, where written statutes are explicitly restricted supplemented by an undefined royal prerogative: a collection of powers belonging to the Sovereign which have no statutory basis.37

Abuse of the British royal prerogative was one of the explicit grievances which ultimately led to the American Revolution. Then as now it was linked to imperial arrangements for standing armies to wage war. It could be said that in America today, the powers needed for imposing U.S. global dominance in the world have again come to restrict the scope of the constitutional public state.

The extent to which presidential power is limited by congressional statute has been and will be continuously and extensively debated. It is clear however that the George W. Bush administration has revived the extreme or monarchical view expressed, for the first time in American political history, by former president Richard Nixon: that "when the president does it, that means that it is not illegal."38

Jack Goldsmith, a former Assistant Attorney General in George W. Bush’s Justice Department, has reported that, inside the White House, Cheney’s legal advisor David Addington frequently argued that "the Constitution empowers the President to exercise prerogative powers to do what is necessary in an emergency to save the country."39 Goldsmith concluded that "The presidency in the age of terrorism – the Terror Presidency – suffers from many of the vices of [Nixon’s] Imperial Presidency."40

Cheney, supported by Addington, made clear in his Iran-Contra Minority Report of 1987 his belief that "the Chief Executive will on occasion feel duty bound to assert monarchical notions of prerogative that will permit him to exceed the law." Cheney supported this claim by pointing to Jefferson’s Louisiana Purchase, which Jefferson, without using the word "prerogative," justified by "the laws of necessity, of self-preservation, of serving our country when in danger."41 But the Cheney-Addington defense of an on-going prerogative in an on-going war on terror has far more in common with 17th-century British monarchical legal theory, than with Jefferson’s single resort to such action, after a lifetime of attacking the notion of prerogative power.42

As part of the case for an unrestrained or monarchical view of executive power, we have seen the contention that the President may disregard or marginalize treaty obligations prohibiting torture. Before COG was declared on September 11, 2001, a network of laws, developed through checks and balances by all three branches of federal government, prohibited torture. "It was not to last."43

In keeping with Cheney’s COG planning in the 1980s, the Bush administration has made similar inroads on habeas corpus, a right conferred by Magna Carta, reaffirmed by the English parliament in a statute of 1679, and mentioned in the U.S. constitution. Nevertheless, in defining the constitutional crisis we now face, it is important to see that it is not an unprecedented and anomalous event, but rooted in developments over decades.

9/11, Deep Events, and the Global Dominance Mindset in American Society

The continuity of past deep events is part of the problem facing those who wish to understand and correct what underlies them. For the mainstream U.S. media (as we now clearly see them) have become so implicated in past protective lies about Korea, Tonkin Gulf, and the JFK assassination that they, as well as the government, have now a demonstrated interest in preventing the truth about any of these events from coming out.44

This means that the current threat to constitutional rights does not derive from the deep state alone. As I have written elsewhere, the problem is a global dominance mindset that prevails not only inside the Washington Beltway but also in the mainstream media and even in the universities, one which has come to accept recent inroads on constitutional liberties, and stigmatizes, or at least responds with silence to, those who are alarmed by them.45 Just as acceptance of bureaucratic groupthink is a necessary condition for advancement within the state, so acceptance of this mindset’s notions of decorum has increasingly become a condition for participation in mainstream public life.

In saying this, I mean something more narrow than the pervasive "business-defined consensus" which Gabriel Kolko once asserted was "a central reality," underlying how "a ruling class makes its policies operate."46 I would agree that, at least since the Reagan era, the mindset I am describing has become more and more clearly identified with the mentality of an overworld determined to protect its privileges and even enlarge them at the expense of the rest of society.

But the mindset I mean is narrower in focus – originally concerned with defending and now increasingly concerned with enlarging America’s dominance in the world, in an era of finite and increasingly scarcer resources. And it is also, increasingly, less a consensus than an arena of serious division and debate.

It is clear that the mindset is not monolithic. There have been recurring notable dissents within it, such as when James Risen and Eric Lichtblau revealed in the New York Times that the Bush administration, in defiance of the FISA Act, was engaged in warrantless electronic surveillance of telephone calls inside the United States.47 But on other issues, notably the Iraq War, the Times has conspicuously failed to play the judicious critical role that it did with respect to the U.S. war in Vietnam. In general, as Kristina Borjesson reports in her devastating book, "Investigative reporting is dwindling…because it is expensive, attracts lawsuits, and can be hostile to the corporate interests and/or government connections of a news division’s parent company."48 And as to critical thinking about 9/11, as before about the Kennedy assassination, the Post has predictably gone out of its way to depict the 9/11 truth movement as a "cacophonous and free-range…bunch of conspiracists."49

According to a survey of Lexis Nexis, the New York Times did not report Attorney General Gonzalez’ newsworthy claim that "There is no expressed grant of habeas corpus in the Constitution." (The Washington Post reported it, without comment, in a story of 197 words.)50 And on the question of torture even a liberal Harvard University professor, Michael Ignatieff, has argued in a University Press book from an even-handed starting point – "A democracy is committed to both the security of the majority and the rights of the individual" -- to an alarming defense of "coercive questioning."51

In this state of affairs, I shall argue, the Internet provides an opportunity for opposition, of potentially immense political importance.

Deep Events as Intrigues within the Global Dominance Consensus

 

Many critics of American foreign policy on the left tend to stress its substantial coherence over time, from the War-Peace Studies for post-war planning of the Council on Foreign Relations in the 1940s, to Defense Secretary Charles Wilson’s plans in the 1950s for a "permanent war economy," to Clinton’s declaration to the United Nations in 1993 that the U.S. will act "multilaterally when possible, but unilaterally when necessary."52

This view of America’s policies has persuaded some, notably Alexander Cockburn, to lament the displacement of coherent Marxist analysis by the "fundamental idiocy" and "foolishness" of "9/11 conspiracism."53 But it is quite possible to acknowledge both that there are ongoing continuities in American policy and also important, hidden, and recurring internal divisions, which have given rise to America’s structural deep events. These events have always involved friction between Wall Street and the Council on Foreign Relations, on the one hand, and the increasingly powerful oil- and military-dominated economic centers of the Midwest and the Texas Sunbelt on the other.

At the time that General MacArthur, drawing on his Midwest and Texas support, threatened to challenge Truman and the State Department, the opposition was seen as one between the traditional Europe-Firsters of the Northeast and new-wealth Asia-Firsters. In the 1952 election, the foreign policy debate was between Democratic "containment" and Republican "rollback." Bruce Cumings, following Franz Schurmann, wrote later of the split, even within the CIA, between "Wall Street internationalism" on the one hand and "cowboy-style expansionism" on the other.54

Many have followed Michael Klare in defining the conflict as one, even within the Council on Foreign Relations, between "traders" and warrior "Prussians."55 Since the rise to eminence of the so-called "Vulcans" – notably Donald Rumsfeld, Dick Cheney, and Paul Wolfowitz, backed by the Project for the New American Century (PNAC) – the struggle has frequently been described as a struggle between the multilateralists of the status quo and the unilateralists seeking indisputable American hegemony.56

Underlying every one of the deep events I have mentioned, and others such as the U-2 incident, can be seen this contest between traderly (multilateralist) and warriorly (unilateralist) approaches to the maintenance of U.S. global dominance. For decades the warriorly faction was clearly a minority; but it was also an activist and well-funded minority, in marked contrast to the relatively passive and disorganized traderly majority. Hence the warriorly preference for war, thanks to ample funding from the military-industrial complex and also to a series of deep events, was able time after time to prevail.

The 1970s can be seen as a turning-point, when a minority CFR faction, led by Paul Nitze, united with corporate executives from the military-industrial complex like David Packard and pro-Zionist future neocons like Richard Perle to forge a succession of militant political coalitions, such as the Committee on the Present Danger (CPD). Cheney and Rumsfeld, then in the Ford White House, participated in this onslaught on the multilateral foreign policy of Henry Kissinger.57 In the late 1990s Cheney and Rumsfeld, even while secretly refining the COG provisions put into force on 9/11, also participated openly in the successor organization to the CPD, the Project for the New American Century (PNAC).

From his office interfacing between CIA and the U.S. Air Force, Col. L. Fletcher Prouty deduced that there was a single Secret Team, within the CIA but not confined to it, responsible for not only the Tonkin Gulf incidents (timed to enable already planned military action against North Vietnam) but other deep events, such as the U-2 incident of 1960 (which in Prouty’s opinion was planned and timed to frustrate the projected summit conference between Eisenhower and Khrushchev) and even the assassination of President Kennedy (after which the Secret Team "moved to take over the whole direction of the war and to dominate the activity of the United States of America").58

In language applicable to both Korea in 1950 and Tonkin Gulf in 1964, Prouty argued that CIA actions followed a pattern of actions which "went completely out of control in Southeast Asia:"

The clandestine operator… prepares the stage by launching a very minor and very secret, provocative attack of a kind that is bound to bring open reprisal. These secret attacks, which may have been made by third parties or by stateless mercenaries whose materials were supplied secretly by the CIA, will undoubtedly create reaction which in turn is observed in the United States…. It is not a new game. [but] it was raised to a high state of art under Walt Rostow and McGeorge Bundy against North Vietnam, to set the pattern for the Gulf of Tonkin attacks.59

I mention Prouty’s thesis here in order to record my partial dissent from it. In my view his notion of a "team" localizes what I call the global dominance mindset too narrowly in a restricted group who are not only like-minded but in conspiratorial communication over a long term. He exhibits the kind of conspiratorialist mentality once criticized by G. William Domhoff:

We all have a tremendous tendency to want to get caught up in believing that there's some secret evil cause for all of the obvious ills of the world …. [Conspiracy theories] encourage a belief that if we get rid of a few bad people, everything will be well in the world.60

My own position is still that which I articulated years ago in response to Domhoff:

I have always believed, and argued, that a true understanding of the Kennedy assassination will lead not to `a few bad people,’ but to the institutional and parapolitical arrangements which constitute the way we are systematically governed.61

Quoting what I had written, Michael Parenti added, "In sum, national security state conspiracies [or what I would call deep events] are components of our political structure, not deviations from it."62

The outcome of the deep events I have mentioned so far has been chiefly a series of victories for the warriors.63 But there have been other structural deep events, notably Watergate in 1972-74 and Iran-Contra in 1986-87, which can be interpreted, if not as victories for the traders, at least as temporary setbacks for the warriors. In The Road to 9/11 I have tried to show that Cheney and Rumsfeld, while in the Ford White House, bitterly resented the setback represented by the post-Watergate reforms, and immediately set in motion a series of moves to reverse them. I argue there that the climax of these moves was the imposition after 9/11 of their long-planned provisions for COG, formulated under their supervision since the early 1980s.

Thus since World War Two the warriorly position, initially that of a marginal but conspiratorial minority, has moved since the Reagan and Bush presidencies into a more and more central position. This is well symbolized by the rise in influence since 1981 of the Council for National Policy, originally funded by Texas oil billionaire Nelson Bunker Hunt and explicitly designed to offset the influence of the Council on Foreign Relations.64 Comparing the 1950s with the present decade, it is striking how much the status of the State Department has declined vis-à-vis the Pentagon. With the accelerated militarization of the U.S. economy, the question arises whether a more traderly foreign policy can ever again prevail.

And since 9/11, especially with the institution of unknown COG procedures, some have talked of the overall subversion of democracy, by a new Imperial Presidency in the Bush White House.65

9/11, the Threat to Constitutional Rights, and Congress

A skeptic might observe that there is still a Congress, with constitutional powers to review and restrict what the executive does. And it is true that a joint congressional committee, in 2002, did investigate CIA and FBI activities before and after 9/11.66 The powers of Congress have been weakened, however. A crucial section of this report, dealing precisely with the CIA’s and Saudi government’s relationship to the alleged hijacker al-Mihdar, was classified and withheld by the administration. When some of the explosive information was leaked to Newsweek, the committee members and staff (rather than the Saudi government) became the focus of a criminal leak investigation by the FBI.67 The chairman, Senator Bob Graham

thought the leak investigation was an obvious effort by the administration to intimidate Congress. And if that was the intention, it worked. Members of the joint committee and their staffs were frightened into silence about the investigation.68

It would appear that the election of Democratic majorities in both houses of Congress has done little to change this state of affairs. Warrantless electronic surveillance (which the President has referred to as a COG provision)69 was endorsed by the new 110th Congress in the Protect America Act of 2007, an act which restricted FISA Court supervision as the President had wished. This same 110th Congress failed to undo the Military Commissions Act of 2006, which (as Robert Parry wrote in the Baltimore Chronicle) "effectively eliminated habeas corpus for non-citizens, including legal resident aliens."70

Just as alarmingly, Congress has shown little or no desire to challenge, or even question, the over-arching assumptions of the war on terror. We are still in a proclaimed national emergency that was first proclaimed by President Bush on September 14, 2001.71 As the Washington Times wrote on September 18, 2001, "Simply by proclaiming a national emergency on Friday, President Bush activated some 500 dormant legal provisions, including those allowing him to impose censorship and martial law." The Washington Times was referring to presidential Proclamation 7463 of September 14, 2001, "Declaration of National Emergency by Reason of Certain Terrorist Attacks." The state of emergency that was subsequently declared on September 23, 2001, by Executive Order 13224, was again formally extended by the president on September 20, 2007.72

COG, NSPD-51, and the Challenge to Congressional Checks and Balances

The constitutional implications of this state of emergency were aggravated by the President’s "National Security and Homeland Security Presidential Directive" (NSPD)-51, of May 9, 2007, which decreed (without even a press release) that

When the president determines a catastrophic emergency has occurred, the president can take over all government functions and direct all private sector activities to ensure we will emerge from the emergency with an "enduring constitutional government."73

The Directive, without explicitly saying so, appeared to override the post-Watergate statutory provisions for congressional regulation enacted in 1977 by the National Emergencies Act.74

Among major newspapers, only the Washington Post reported NSPD-51 at all, noting that the "directive formalizes a shift of authority away from the Department of Homeland Security to the White House."75 It added that

After the 2001 attacks, Bush assigned about 100 senior civilian managers to rotate secretly to locations outside of Washington for weeks or months at a time to ensure the nation's survival, a shadow government that evolved based on long-standing "continuity of operations plans."

However the Post failed to note that these continuity of operations (COG) plans, which reportedly involve suspension of the Constitution and possibly Congress, were secret -- the fruit of secret planning over two decades by Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld, even during periods of time when neither of the two men held a government position.76

After urging from constituents, including many members of the 911truth movement, Congressman Peter deFazio did attempt to see the Continuity of Government (COG) plans in the classified Appendices of NSPD-51. Both he, and eventually the entire House Committee on Homeland Security, were denied the opportunity to see these appendices, on the grounds that the Committee did not possess the requisite clearances. This should have been a line in the sand for Congress to assert its constitutional rights and duties. As I have reported elsewhere,

The story, ignored by the mainstream press, involved more than the usual tussle between the legislative and executive branches of the U.S. Government. What was at stake was a contest between Congress's constitutional powers of oversight, and a set of policy plans that could be used to suspend or modify the constitution.77

But it appears that the current Congress will do nothing to support Congressman deFazio’s efforts at congressional oversight of COG.

Congress and the On-Going Cover-Up of 9/11

Furthermore, the 110th Congress took no action to ensure that all government agencies will collaborate with the National Archives, in fulfillment of the 9/11 Commission’s commitment to release its supporting records to the public in 2009.78 A law to ensure this is badly needed.

The FBI has been declassifying documents cooperatively with respect to this commitment, and recently the CIA has begun to cooperate as well.79 But some federal agencies, notably the FAA and Pentagon, are not collaborating with the 9/11 Commission’s commitment at all. It may take a law to get them to do so. Both the FAA and the Pentagon declined to release important records to the 9/11 Commission, despite its statutory powers, until required to do so by judicial subpoena.80 But the law which created the 9/11 Commission in 2002 made no legal determination for the future of its records.81

This is a matter of concern, because 9/11 has clearly initiated a major readjustment of our traditional constitutional balances and civil rights. I submit that a vigorous defense of the constitutional traditions of this country requires vigorous pressure for the release of the 9/11 Commission’s records, so that we can begin to resolve the mysteries of how this constitutional crisis arose.

In short, we are living in an on-going state of emergency whose exact limits are unknown, on the basis of a controversial deep event – 9/11 -- that is still largely a mystery. Without endorsing the notion that a coup d’état has occurred, I would categorically assert that a radically hegemonic mindset, located primarily in Vice-President Cheney’s office, is currently using 9/11, the war on terror, and secret COG rules to assert prerogative limitations on the checks and balances of the U.S. constitution, without any significant challenge from a compliant Congress and media.

9/11, the Public, and Internet Politics

This raises the question whether the public, about to vote in the 2008 election, can exercise the constitutional restraints that Congress and the media have failed to supply. The answer, I submit, lies in what I would call Internet Politics, the mobilization of nationwide pressures on candidates in the next election through internet coordination.

There is I believe a latent majority of Americans who could agree to ask all candidates to

a) review and revise the Military Commissions Act of 2006, to unequivocally restore habeas corpus, within the limitations of the U.S. Constitution, Article One, Section 9;

b) unequivocally outlaw torture;

c) review and restrict the provisions for warrantless electronic surveillance in the Protect America Act of 2007.

d) vote for The American Freedom Agenda Act of 2007 (H.R. 3835), which addresses these and other issues. This bill was introduced by U.S. Rep. Ron Paul on October 15, 2007, and is supported by both the Republican American Freedom Agenda, and the Democratic American Freedom Campaign.82

Those in the 911truth movement could ask candidates to take two further steps

d) insist on the right of the Homeland Security Committees in Congress to review the COG appendices to National Security Presidential Directive (NSPD)-51;

e) support a law to force all government agencies to collaborate with the National Archives, in fulfillment of the 9/11 Commission’s commitment to release its supporting records to the public in 2009.83

But social thought is socially fashioned. For it to be effective it must be mobilized, and become more than a chorus of bloggers croaking from our backwater lilypads in the blogomarsh. Clearly it would take a strenuous concerted effort to create or persuade a movement, such as MoveOn, to take on all these issues.

Is it possible that some organization can be persuaded to accept this challenge, and take the first steps in mobilizing such a force?


 NOTES


1 In the single month of March 1962, the OAS set off an average of 120 bombs per day ("The Generals' Putsch," http://countrystudies.us/algeria/34.htm).

2 BBC News, November 24, 2006: "Alexander Litvinenko wrote a book in which he alleged Federal Security Service (FSB) agents in Russia coordinated the 1999 apartment block bombings in the country that killed more than 300 people."

3 Gareth Jenkins, "Susurluk and the Legacy of Turkey’s Dirty War," Terrorism Monitor, May 1, 2008,
http://www.jamestown.org/terrorism/news/article.php?articleid=2374142.

4 Nicholas Birch, Irish Times, November 26, 2005,

http://www.ireland.com/newspaper/world/2005/1126/1908792893FR26TURKEY.html.
Former Turkish president and prime minister Suleyman Demirel later commented on this incident that "It is fundamental principle that there is one state. In our country there are two….There is one deep state and one other state ….The state that should be real is the spare one, the one that should be spare is the real one." (Jon Gorvett, "Turkey’s `Deep State’ Surfaces in Former President’s Words, Deeds in Kurdish Town," Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, January/February 2006,
http://www.washington-report.org/archives/Jan_Feb_2006/0601037.html ).

5 Jenkins, "Susurluk and the Legacy of Turkey’s Dirty War." A Google search on June 7, 2008, for "Semdinli + PKK" in major world English-language publications yielded 157 results. Of these just two were from the United States. Of these one (Washington Times, December 6, 2005) did not mention the deep state’s involvement in the incident at all. The other (Newsweek, November 28, 2005) defined the deep state without mentioning its underworld involvement. A similar search for "deep state" revealed the same paucity of coverage in the U.S. media.

6 Peter Dale Scott, The Road to 9/11: Wealth, Empire, and the Future of America (Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 2007), 4-7, 14-17, etc.

7 Scott, The Road to 9/11, 121-22, 124-27, 163-69.

8 Scott, The Road to 9/11, 139-42, 150-60, etc.; Peter Lance, Triple Cross: How bin Laden’s Master Spy Penetrated the CIA, the Green Berets, and the FBI –and Why Patrick Fitzgerald Failed to Stop Him (New York: Regan/HarperCollins, 2006).

9 Scott, The Road to 9/11, 153; citing Toronto Globe and Mail, November 22, 2001. It is no accident that the mainstream U.S. press have been silent, not just concerning this important fact, but also about the two books recording it: Peter Lance’s Triple Cross and my own The Road to 9/11. Triple Cross finally got mentioned by name in the New York Times, but only because its publisher, Judith Regan, was dismissed by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation (New York Times, December 19, 2006).

10 On October 18, 2002, Attorney General John Ashcroft invoked the State Secrets Privilege in order to prevent disclosure of the nature of Edmonds' work on the grounds that it would endanger national security.

11 Daniel Ellsberg with Kris Welch, KPFA, 8/26/06,
http://wotisitgood4.blogspot.com/2006/10/ellsberg-hastert-got-suitcases-of-al.html.

12 Vanity Fair, September 2005. According to the ATC web site, "As one of the leading business associations in the United States, the American-Turkish Council (ATC) is dedicated to effectively strengthening U.S.-Turkish relations through the promotion of commercial, defense, technology, and cultural relations. Its diverse membership includes Fortune 500, U.S. and Turkish companies, multinationals, nonprofit organizations, and individuals with an interest in U.S.-Turkish relations." It is thus comparable to the American Security Council, whose activities in 1963 are discussed in Scott, Deep Politics, e.g. 292.

Edmonds has been partially corroborated by Huseyin Baybasin, another Turkish heroin kingpin now in jail in Holland, in his book Trial by Fire: "I handled the drugs which came through the channel of the Turkish Consulate in England." But as he adds: "I was with the Mafia but I was carrying this out with the same Mafia group in which the rulers of Turkey were part." Baybasin claimed he was assisted by Turkish officers working for NATO in Belgium ("The Susurluk Legacy," By Adrian Gatton, Druglink Magazine, Nov/Dec 2006, http://adriangatton.com/archive/1990_01_01_archive.html).

13 Also in 2003 former government consultant Chalmers Johnson declared, in an interview, that what happened in Florida after the 2000 election was a "coup d’état" (Critical Asian Studies, 35, no. 2 [2003], 303). In the same year Bill Moyers, a veteran of the Johnson White House, wrote of the G.W. Bush to realign government as "the most radical assault on the notion of one nation, indivisible, that has occurred in our lifetime" (Text of speech to the Take Back America conference sponsored by the Campaign for America’s Future, June 4, 2003, Washington, DC,
http://www.commondreams.org/views03/0610-11.htm).

14 Interview with Alex Jones, November 2, 2006, http://jonesreport.com/articles/021106_vidal.html.

15 Ed Encho, "9/11: Cover For a Coup D'Etat?" OpEdNews, May 27, 2008,

http://www.opednews.com/maxwrite/diarypage.php?did=7521.

16 9/11 Commission Report, 38, 326; Scott, Road to 9/11, 228-29.

17 Scott, The Road to 9/11, 183-87; citing Ross Gelbspan, Break-ins, Death Threats, and the FBI: The Covert War against the Central America Movement (Boston: South End Press, 1991), 184; Alfonso Chardy, Miami Herald, July 5, 1987.

18 Robert Parry, "Gonzales Questions Habeas Corpus," Baltimore Chronicle, January 19, 2007, http://baltimorechronicle.com/2007/011907Parry.shtml.

19 Cumings, The Origins of the Korean War, Vol II, 611, 613; quoting William R. Corson, The Armies of Ignorance: The Rise of the American Intelligence Empire (New York: Dial, 1977), 315–21; whole passage quoted in Peter Dale Scott, Drugs, Oil, and War: The United States in Afghanistan, Colombia, and Indochina (Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2003), 61. Cumings quotes further from Dean Rusk’s testimony to Congress on June 20: ‘‘We see no present indication that the people across the border have any intention of fighting a major war for that purpose’’ (taking over South Korea). He notes that General Ridgway later said he "was shocked" by Dean Rusk’s reassuring testimony.

20 Cumings, Origins, II, 600-01. My selective quotations cannot do justice to the complexity of Cumings’ book, which presents three different possible explanations for the outbreak of the war. Cumings depicts a contest for the future of the peninsula -- and also Taiwan -- in which local leaders on both sides were looking for support from their respective megapowers.

21 Cumings, Origins, II, 547; citing Gavin McCormack, Cold War/Hot War (Sydney: Hale and Iremonger, 1983), 97; E. Gough Whitlam, A Pacific Community (Cambridge, MA: Harvard UP, 1981), 57-58.

22 Cumings, Origins, II, 527.

23 Cumings, Origins, II, 600, 601. Yi P?m-s?k was a pro-Chiang advocate in Seoul of attacking North Korea. Kim S?k-won was a Korean commander who had previously attacked North Korea. Tiger Kim was a Korean veteran of the Japanese army close to Rhee, and a war criminal.

24 James Bamford, Body of Secrets (New York: Doubleday, 2001), 301. William Bundy has taken issue with this judgment, arguing that escalating the war north "didn’t fit in with our plans at all" (Robert McNamara, "The Tonkin Gulf Resolution," in Andrew Jon Rotter, Light at the End of the Tunnel: A Vietnam War Anthology [New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1991], 83). But Ball was correct in reporting that bombing fit in with some people’s plans.

25 Peter Dale Scott, The War Conspiracy: JFK, 9/11, and the Deep Politics of War (Ipswich, MA: Mary Ferrell Foundation Press, 2008), 178-215.

26 Robert J. Hanyok, "Skunks, Bogies, Silent Hounds, and the Flying Fish: The Gulf of Tonkin Mystery, 2-4 August 1964," Cryptologic Quarterly, declassified in National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No. 132,
http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB132/relea00012.pdf.

27 Ray McGovern, "CIA, Iran & the Gulf of Tonkin," ConsortiumNews, January 12, 2008, http://www.consortiumnews.com/2008/011108a.html.

28 Scott, War Conspiracy (2008), 132, cf. 67; citing Roger Hilsman, To Move a Nation (Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1967), 318, 314.

29 Scott, War Conspiracy (2008), 88, 93-103.

30 "National Security Advisor Holds Press Briefing," White House Website, May 16, 2002,
http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2002/05/20020516-13.html.
We now know that on 9/11 there were a number of war games and exercises, including an exercise at the National Reconnaissance Office near Dulles Airport, testing responses "if a plane were to strike a building." (Scott, Road to 9/11, 215-16; Evening Standard [London], August 22, 2002; Boston Globe, September 11, 2002,
http://www.boston.com/news/packages/sept11/anniversary/wire_stories/0903_plane_exercise.htm ).

31 9/11 Commission Report, 259, 271; Lawrence Wright, The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11 (New York: Knopf, 2006), 352-54 (FBI agent). After 9/11 another FBI agent was even more bitter: "They [CIA] didn’t want the bureau meddling in their business – that’s why they didn’t tell the FBI…. And that’s why September 11 happened. That is why it happened….They have blood on their hands. They have three thousand deaths on their hands" (James Bamford, A Pretext for War: 9/11, Iraq, and the Abuse of America’s Intelligence Agencies [New York: Doubleday, 2004], 224).

32 Clarence M. Kelley, Kelley: The Story of an FBI Director (Kansas City: Andrews, McMeel, & Parker, 1987), 268; quoted in Scott, The War Conspiracy (2008), 389.

33 Jefferson Morley, Our Man in Mexico: Winston Scott and the Hidden History of the CIA (Lawrence, KA: University Press of Kansas, 2008), 196-98; discussion in Scott, The War Conspiracy (2008), 387-88.

34 Lawrence Wright, "The Agent," New Yorker, July 10 and 17, 2006, 68; discussion in Scott, The War Conspiracy (2008), 388-89.

35 Republican Senators Heinz and Tower also died in plane crashes, but after collisions between two aircraft. Conservative Democrat Larry McDonald died when the civilian airliner KAL 007 was shot down by Soviet interceptors in September 1983.

36 Michael Parenti, Dirty Truths (San Francisco: City Lights Books, 1996), 201, 206: "In the years before the fatal crash there had been assassination attempts against Walter and Victor [Reuther]. (Victor believes the attempt against him was intended as a message to Walter.) In each of these instances, state and federal law-enforcement agencies showed themselves at best lackadaisical in their investigative efforts, suggesting the possibility of official collusion or at least tolerance for the criminal deeds. … Third, like the suspicious near-crash that occurred the previous year, the fatal crash also involved a faulty altimeter in a small plane. It is a remarkable coincidence that Reuther would have been in two planes with the exact same malfunctioning in that brief time frame....In a follow-up interview with us, Victor further noted: `Animosity from government had been present for some time [before the fatal crash]. It was not only Walter's stand on Vietnam and Cambodia that angered Nixon, but also I had exposed some CIA elements inside labor, and this was also associated with Walter .... There is a fine line between the mob and the CIA There is a lot of crossover. Throughout the entire history of labor relations there is a sordid history of industry in league with Hoover and the mafia .. . . You need to check into right-wing corporate groups and their links to the national security system.’ Checking into such things is no easy task. The FBI still refuses to turn over nearly 200 pages of documents regarding Reuther's death, including the copious correspondence between field offices and Hoover. And many of the released documents-some of them forty years old-are totally inked out. It is hard to fathom what national security concern is involved or why the FBI and CIA still keep so many secrets about Walter Reuther's life and death."

37 See discussion in Jack N. Rakove, "Taking the Prerogative out of the Presidency: An Originalist Perspective," Presidential Studies Quarterly 37.1, 85–100; Frederick A.O. Schwarz, Jr. and Aziz Z. Huq, Unchecked and Unbalanced, Presidential Power in a Time of Terror (New York: Rodale, 2007), 153-58

38 Interview with David Frost, aired May 11, 1977; in Schwarz and Huq, Unchecked and Unbalanced, 159; Robert D. Sloane, "The Scope of Executive Power in the Twenty-First Century: An Introduction," Boston University Law Review 88:341,
http://www.bu.edu/law/central/jd/organizations/journals/bulr/documents/SLOANE.pdf, 346.

39 Jack Goldsmith, The Terror Presidency: Law and Judgment inside the Bush Administration (New York : W.W. Norton, 2007), 82.

40 Goldsmith, The Terror Presidency, 183

41 Minority Report, Report of the Congressional Committees Investigating the Iran-Contra Affair, 100th Congress. 1st Session, H. Rept No 100-433, S. Rept No. 100-216, p. 465.

42 Schwarz and Huq, Unchecked and Unbalanced, 174.

43 Schwarz and Huq, Unchecked and Unbalanced, 72; cf. Sloane, "The Scope of Executive Power," 347.

44 Cf. the investigative journalist and media critic Philip Weiss, "When Black Becomes White," in Kristina Borjesson, Into the Buzzsaw: Leading Journalists Expose the Myth of a Free Press (Amherst, NY: Prometheus Books, 2002), 186: "The mainstream media’s response [to theories of the Kennedy assassination] has been a dull one – to solemnly and stoically report the government’s assertions, over and over."

45 Scott, War Conspiracy, 10, 383, 395.

46 Gabriel Kolko, The Roots of American Foreign Policy (Boston: Beacon, 1969), xii-xiii.

47 James Risen and Eric Lichtblau. "Spying Program Snared U.S. Calls", New York Times, December 21, 2005.

48 Borjesson, Into the Buzzsaw, 13. Even former George W. Bush spokesman Scott McClellan has referred to the media in his book as "complicit enablers" of Bush administration war propaganda (Scott McClellan, What Happened: Inside the Bush White House and Washington's Culture of Deception [New York: Public Affairs, 2008], 70, 125).

49 Washington Post, September 8, 2006. Cf. BBC, "Paranoia paradise," April 4, 2002,
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/1909378.stm. \
The common tactic of such essays is to focus on absurdly eccentric beliefs, and try to pass them off as representative of all those criticizing received anti-conspiratorial opinion.

50 Washington Post, January 23, 2007. However on May 4, 2008, the Post discussed the remark in a favorable review of former Republican Congressman Mickey Edwards’ book Reclaiming Conservatism: How a Great American Political Movement Got Lost -- And How It Can Find Its Way Back.51 Michael Ignatieff, The Lesser Evil: Political Ethics in an Age of Terror (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2004), 8.

52 E.g. Paul L. Atwood, "War and Empire Are and Always Have Been the American Way of Life," Global Policy Forum, February 2006,
http://www.globalpolicy.org/empire/history/2006/022006history.htm.

53 Alexander Cockburn, "The Age of Irrationality: The 9/11 Conspiracists and the Decline of the American Left," CounterPunch, November 28, 2006,
http://www.counterpunch.org/cockburn11282006.html.

54 Cumings, Origins, II, 123; cf. 13-14; Herbert Franz Schurmann, The Logic of World Power: An

Inquiry into the Origins, Currents, and Contradictions of World Politics (New York: Random House, 1974).

55 Michael Klare, Beyond the "Vietnam Syndrome" (Washington, D.C.: Institute for Policy Studies, 1981).

56 E.g. Robert Wright, "All Quiet on the Western Front," Slate, October 11, 2001,

http://www.slate.com/id/117170/  .

57 Scott, Road to 9/11, 57-61, etc. Cf. Jerry Sanders, Peddlers of Crisis: The Committee on the Present Danger and the Politics of Containment (Boston, MA: South End Press, 1983).

58 L. Fletcher Prouty, The Secret Team: The CIA and Its Allies in Control of the United States and the World (1997), http://www.ratical.org/ratville/JFK/ST/.

59 Prouty, The Secret Team (1997), Chapter II.

60 G. William Domhoff, in Jonathan Vankin, Conspiracies, Cover-Ups, and Crimes: Political Manipulation and Mind Control in America (New York: Paragon House, 1991), 125-26.

61 Scott, Deep Politics and the Death of JFK, 11.

62 Michael Parenti, Dirty Truths (San Francisco: City Lights Books, 1996),

63 This has been doubted in the case of the JFK assassination, notably by Chomsky. For my latest contribution to this old argument, see Scott, War Conspiracy (2008).

64 Scott, War Conspiracy (2008), 14; Michael Standaert, Skipping Towards Armageddon: The Politics and Propaganda of the Left Behind Novels and the LaHaye Empire (Brooklyn, NY: Soft Skull Press, 2006), 112-14.

65 Charlie Savage, Takeover: The Return of the Imperial Presidency and the Subversion of American Democracy (New York: Little Brown, 2007), 51. Strangely, Savage does not mention COG by name, but he refers to the decade of COG planning in the 1980s as evidence for his case that a "cabal of zealots" has been planning for "the return of the imperial presidency" ever since Cheney and Rumsfeld lost their posts in the Ford Administration.

66 U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and U.S. House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, Joint Inquiry Into Intelligence Community Activities Before and After the Terrorist Attacks of September 11, 2001.

67 See "The Saudi Money Trail," Newsweek, December 2, 2002.

68 Philip Shenon, The Commission: The Uncensored History of the 9/11 Investigation (New York: Twelve/Hachette, 2008), 54-55.

69 "Addressing the nation from the Oval Office in 2005 after the first disclosures of the NSA's warrantless electronic surveillance became public, Bush insisted that the spying program in question was reviewed `every 45 days’ as part of planning to assess threats to `the continuity of our government’"
(Christopher Ketcham, "The Last Round-Up," Radaronline, May 15, 2008,
http://circleof13.blogspot.com/2008/05/last-roundup.html).

Cf. President’s Radio Address, December 15, 2005,
http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2005/12/20051217.html :
"The activities I authorized are reviewed approximately every 45 days. Each review is based on a fresh intelligence assessment of terrorist threats to the continuity of our government and the threat of catastrophic damage to our homeland."

70 Parry, "Gonzales Questions Habeas Corpus," Baltimore Chronicle, January 19, 2007.

71 9/11 Commission Report, 38, 326; Scott, The Road to 9/11, 228-29.

72 White House Notice of September 20, 2007,
http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2007/09/20070920-9.html.

73 Jerome Corsi, "Bush makes power grab," WorldNetDaily, May 23, 2007, \
http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=55824.

74Congressional Research Service Report for Congress, "National Emergency Powers," updated August 30, 2007, pp. 10ss,
http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/natsec/98-505.pdf.

75 Washington Post, May 10, 2007.

76 Scott, The Road to 9/11, 183-87; citing James Mann, "The Armageddon Plan," Atlantic Monthly (March 2004), http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/prem/200403/mann; James Mann, The Rise of the Vulcans: The History of Bush’s War Cabinet (New York: Viking, 2004), 138–45; James Bamford, A Pretext for War: 9/11, Iraq, and the Abuse of America’s Intelligence Agencies (New York: Doubleday, 2004), 70-74. Cf. Peter Dale Scott, "Congress, the Bush Adminstration and Continuity of Government Planning: The Showdown", Counterpunch, March 31, 2008, http://www.counterpunch.org/scott03312008.html.

77 Peter Dale Scott, "Congress, the Bush Adminstration and Continuity of Government Planning: The Showdown", Counterpunch, March 31, 2008, http://www.counterpunch.org/scott03312008.html.

78 Kean and Hamilton, Without Precedent, 312, cf. 9/11 Commission, Media Advisory, August 20, 2004, which set a date of January 9, 2009.

79 The National Archives started a pilot project for the declassification of Commission records. According to their interim report, dated June 22, 2007, they have made progress with the Commission’s internal files. However the following excerpt shows that of other agencies, only the FBI was cooperating in 2007:

FBI Decisions:


Declassified


Declassified, but needs referral elsewhere


Sanitized


Sanitized and needs referral elsewhere


Withheld in full

The CIA, the agency with the second highest number of pages in this pilot, has indicated that they have "made no decision regarding how and when it will apply any resources to this request."

Other than FBI, we have received no official response from the other referral agencies ("Update on the Declassification of the Records of the 9/11 Commission," June 22, 2007, http://www.archives.gov/declassification/pidb/meetings/06-22-07-tilley.pdf.)

The CIA subsequently resolved to review relevant records.

80 John Farmer, " ‘United 93’: The Real Picture," Washington Post, April 30, 2006. Cf. Kean and Hamilton, Without Precedent, 87: "The staff front office suggested that the NORAD situation bordered on willful concealment."

81 Public Law 107-306, Nov. 27, 2002, Title VI, Section 610.

82 Amerrican Freedom Agenda, http://www.americanfreedomagenda.org; American Freedom Campaign,
http://www.americanfreedomcampaign.org.

83 Kean and Hamilton, Without Precedent, 312, cf. 9/11 Commission, Media Advisory, August 20, 2004, which set a date of January 9, 2009.


Peter Dale Scott,
a former Canadian diplomat and English Professor at the University of California, Berkeley, is a poet, writer, and researcher. He is the author of the forthcoming book (reissued and much enlarged) The War Conspiracy: JFK, 9/11, and the Deep Politics of War, due in August 2008. It can be pre-ordered from the Mary Ferrell Foundation Press at
http://www.maryferrell.org/wiki/index.php/MFF_Store. Scott’s website is http://www.peterdalescott.net.

: 4 documents (15 pages)

: 170 documents (1,067 pages)

: 100 documents (400 pages)

: 31 documents (132 pages)

: 98 documents (241 pages)

In support of this overall thesis I pointed to features of 9/11 which recalled similar deep events: the still not fully understood outbreak of the Korean War in 1950, the JFK assassination, and the so-called Second Tonkin Gulf Incident of 1964 (an alleged attack on U.S. destroyers which we now know never happened).

The similarities between these deep events which have disturbed American history since World War Two suggest that they are not just a sequence of unrelated external accidents, but at least in part the product of some on-going deep indigenous force not yet adequately understood.

In this series of deep events, perhaps the most striking similarities are between the JFK assassination (henceforward referred to as "JFK") and 9/11. Earlier talks and articles I have delivered on this topic are developed even further in my forthcoming much expanded reissue of my early book,

The following essay is the concluding section of the new book, and has never hitherto been published.]

 

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 19:21 | 726534 Cistercian
Cistercian's picture

 Junk for not just posting a link.

  Why take up so much space on the ZH servers?

 Not cool...and I believe WB7 told you this yesterday.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 17:23 | 726357 Uncle Remus
Uncle Remus's picture

CONFIDENCE does not power cars or melt steel.

But lack of trust goes a long way towards preventing a society from addressing the problems it faces. Pavlovian saliva slinging because someone injected 9/11 into a broader discussion of the lack of trust our society has in it's government (and a host of other institutions as well) isn't helping either.

Lack of trust is palpable. The inability to trust, rampant disinformation and outright theft of public monies are  themselves deterrents to our society coming to terms with our finite energy situation, over-population and our omni-directional fuckedness.

You can't expect a society that was intentionally educated to not develop critical thought and bombarded 24x7x365 with malicious and contradictory half-truths to actually know a fact when they see one much less wrap their minds around it and process it at least semi-objectively.

Seems to me that hard-earned, well-placed trust would be the cornerstone of fixing the situation.

BWTFDIK

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 16:54 | 726308 DosZap
DosZap's picture

As this thing unravels, we will see more and more of this, the fuse is lit, and if the Congress cannot get it fixed properly, then they best resign, while their ahead...............

 

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20101114/ap_on_go_ot/us_judges_threats

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 16:23 | 726276 GoingLoonie
GoingLoonie's picture

Good job GW!  Next time put in a plug for my guillotine factory.  The French did it correctly.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 16:05 | 726264 William F. Dulle
William F. Dulle's picture

Restoring trust in this system is like restoring trust in a shell game after the marks have figured out the operator is palming the pea, and that the game, if honest, would go bust after a couple of rounds.

You'd either need new marks (read globalization), or exceptionally stupid marks (read congress).

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 15:45 | 726252 Anal Picnic
Anal Picnic's picture

There are some serious whack jobs on this site. You'd think the entire managerial class of the USA was engaged in a giant conspiracy to rip off their fellow citizens. It's not a conspiracy fellow munchers. It's called capitalism. 

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 16:34 | 726290 Clapham Junction
Clapham Junction's picture

Curious post from someone whose first name is "Anal."

Can't you be named after a train station, or something else more normal?

What were your parents thinking?!

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 19:04 | 726499 Anal Picnic
Anal Picnic's picture

How's that clap treating you?

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 16:28 | 726283 GoingLoonie
GoingLoonie's picture

I would suggest that with the change in political power imposed by rigged elections in Florida 10 years ago, the word was put out to all levels of government and big business that no one would be held accountable.  Some examples were quickly presented through the press, and voila!  The word is, "anything goes."  Ten years later here we are.  Only us, small people and small business are held accountable.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 15:45 | 726250 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

The 9/11 and Anthrax stuff strays into tin-foil hat territory, and damages the rest of your key point about Trust.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 15:33 | 726240 anonnn
anonnn's picture

Here's the nut:

 The art of monetary policy consists in keeping the relationship between the value of money and the value of the other commodities as steady as possible.

To test the usefullness, apply this definition to a specific problem, say,

Stealing and diluting the savings of wage-earners.

The failure to control the value of money needs to be remedied. Thus trace the source of this failure fix it. The problem disappears.

Note; The source of the problem is always the act, or failure to act, of real persons. How the persons are handled may be direct [correction, removal, punishment, etc] or indirect [disable the mechanisms by which the antisocial acts are committed, such as nontransparency, pseudo-regulation and no-regulation, pseudo-accounting, computer-overwhelm of exchange operations, 2Big2Fail and 2Big2Prosecute myths, etc.].

 

 

 

 

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 15:07 | 726220 LeBalance
LeBalance's picture

"If we don't prosecute the criminals, our economy will NEVER recover"

GW is buying into ownership of the Matrix.

>There is no spoon.<

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 14:43 | 726199 fallst
fallst's picture

The bullies will keep taking your lunch money until you stand up to them and then they crawl back into their expensive holes.

Happened before, will happen again.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 14:22 | 726174 Bernard Marx
Bernard Marx's picture

If in fact it is a decline in trust rather than a loss of confidence that is partly responsible for the economic malaise affecting our economies then things will be getting much worse.  The government and business have diagnosed the problem as one of confidence and will stop at nothing to rebuild it.  However, in doing so they lie and obfuscate.  Actions that lead to a further decline in trust.  So trust declines even more which leads to bigger lies.  Talk about the mother of all death spirals.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 14:04 | 726164 Shell Game
Shell Game's picture

Another great post, GW. I have to agree with WB7 on not lumping 9/11 in with this aspect of reform. 

"Trust in Government is Necessary for a Stable Economy"

I'd add to that by saying, a trustworthy government is a tightly controlled government with de-centralized power - both financial and beurocratic.  The exact opposite of this current, highly controlling government..

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 15:23 | 726228 infotechsailor
infotechsailor's picture

The incoming republicans will maintain their neocon (hijacked republican party) agenda so long as the right wing of the electorate believes that arabs took out three buildings with 2 planes.

the ignorance of the public (with help from the mainstream media, sure) is what allows the expansion of the police state, the ridiculous homeland security expenditures, and the erosion of 4th amendment and other civil liberties.

I would say the two events (9/11 lie, and MBS/zombie bank meltdown lie) go hand in hand with restoring sanity to the federal govt, and America as a whole.

In any case, I see niether investigations (much less prosecutions) having much likelihood of actually occuring, so ill continue my plans for emigration to hong kong.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 13:31 | 726137 americanspirit
americanspirit's picture

Unfortunately we don't prosecute the really big criminals - just the small fry like Bernie Madoff. As an example, the cigarette industry kills 400,000 people a year just in the US, and millions more worldwide. You can debate the actual numbers but it is mass murder any way you look at it. Have there ever been criminal prosecutions of this industry, under RICO or otherwise? Of course not, and there never will be. Ditto with other manufacturers and institutions who maim and kill, who poison the earth, air and water, and who cheat and steal from millions of hog-tied victims. The system is rigged, totally, and I don't see it changing no matter how many Americans choose to exercise their second amendment rights - which will be way too late to have any effect anyway, if it ever happens.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 13:23 | 726125 Atomizer
Atomizer's picture

This event is all playbook & by design. Central Bankers are protecting their children banking subsidiaries. Think about a romper room episode of 'Mirror, mirror on the wall'.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B0aFlgq48AU

The multi nationalist are going to claim they can produce candy. Have a watch.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IVG1_lnjw2s

Meanwhile back in the US, the candy has run out.

Social Insecurity

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eUcwAM-gIuI

 

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 13:13 | 726113 Temporalist
Temporalist's picture

A simple analogy, when playing a game with blatant and obvious cheaters does one continue to play the game?  Even children know better than to play with cheaters.

"Mr Greenspan said the major lesson from the financial crisis is that US banks need more capital to survive shocks.

Banks operated with less capital because of an assumption they would be rescued by the government, he said. Lehman Brothers would not have failed with adequate capital, he said.

“Rampant fraud” was also an issue, Mr Greenspan said.

“Fraud creates very considerable instability in competitive markets,” he said. “If you cannot trust your counterparties, it would not work.” Bloomberg

http://www.businessday.co.za/articles/Content.aspx?id=126088

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 13:13 | 726111 TDoS
TDoS's picture

Great article, and an extremely interesting concept.  Our society is so unbelievably corrupt, so thoroughly criminal to it's very core, that there isn't enough honesty left for the crooks to even mark.

All we have now are crooks scamming other crooks.  The center is eaten away, and the whole shit taco is going to collapse on itself very soon.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 13:25 | 726128 Bob
Bob's picture

The cynic in me completely agrees with your assessment.  But the surviving "romantic" at the core of that cynicism longs to see it proven wrong.

There is no question about this being the watershed moment of the matter, however.  What becomes of the banksters will be the indelibly definitive answer. 

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 13:37 | 726148 Hulk
Hulk's picture

As a federal whistleblower, I can tell you firsthand that the level of fraud and corruption in the system is stunning... The system investigating itself will never work. We need to get the Bill Blacks and Harry Markos empowered and indemnified. No way that the PTB will ever allow this to happen, therefore collapse and reset...

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 13:02 | 726104 High Plains Drifter
High Plains Drifter's picture

I saw one of these in a gun shop back in 2005. He wanted 6000 for it. Now they are about 8500. Damn I knew I should have put that on my plastic. Ha ha ha. Oh well shows you were my head is at on this Sunday morning.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-NCJFI7T6Zc

Sweet. real sweet.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 13:08 | 726102 surfsup
surfsup's picture

Article 1 section 10 of the United States Constitution:  Section. 10. No State shall enter into any Treaty, Alliance, or Confederation; grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal; coin Money; emit Bills of Credit; make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts; pass any Bill of Attainder, ex post facto Law, or Law impairing the Obligation of Contracts, or grant any Title of Nobility.

http://www.constitution.org/indexco_.htm

...

Ex Post Facto Law:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ex_post_facto_law

...

 

Very important point here in why the Originators of the Constitution wrote this section into the document which serves as a FIRE WALL for the tendencies of greed which appear to accompany the ascent to power of most any person.   Instead of trying to ignore or forcefully do away with these tendencies, the founders realized that more often than not, such inclinations will arise within the average personality once they are elected -- and thus it was about creating a BARRIER to such wrong action -- wrong action in relation to the Common Good...

At the time even allegedly "representational"  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parliamentary_system parliamentary systems were basically bicameral constructs of synarchistic design -- meaning there were controllable by a concealed and deceptive "syncing" of both sides through a minority within which on the surface appeared as divergent leftocrats and rightocrats. Since the construct was manipulated via Nobility wishing to merely perpetuate control, many unlawful actions which were taken against a people which clearly violated laws of the land were taken up in these bodies and just dealt with by changing the law "ex post facto."    ex: A man comes along and steals Jane's ice cream cone, which is against the law.  The police man sees this and arrests the thief.  Thief calls his attorney who then tries to change the law allowing theft of ice cream cones under certain conditions.  Thief walks free and is now duly enabled to continue stealing ice cream cones..."

The founders could only work with what they were given and this was based upon the "average consciousness" of individuals at the time.  A bicameral system could in fact be continued in the Young America but would be ruled over by a Constitutional Set of Principles which would supersede in such cases of abuse and such games...

As the orchestrated affairs of the current times play out, indeed the same attempt might be going on:  

The legislation is already being drafted under the interstate commerce clause to ratify MERS and everything it did retroactively.

http://livinglies.wordpress.com/2010/11/11/pardon-livinglies-obtains-wall-street-playbook-mers-to-be-legitimized-by-act-of-congress/

...

As has been the case, this attempt will be wrapped deep within some bill which has nothing on the surface which alerts people to such changes in CONTRACT LAW -- such being explicitly banned by the United States Constitution.   The average person is best to "hone up" on the US Constitution to keep things simple and clearly targeted.  As a FIRE WALL it is an EXCELLENT Design and will serve the Populist Movement in many ways:

1.   It keeps things non reactionary or fringe group like.  The media cannot paint someone as "outside the system" or as "militant revolutionaries" when they hold close and are specifically versed in the US Constitution.  In fact to hold GROUND on this is to actually be CLOSER to the NATION than any argument of a departure from the principles there in.  The founders gave us a great tool -- its all already in writing and no matter how far out the crimes and synarchies get, a working knowledge of that document will serve to Harmonize the core intentions of True Americans going forward.   

2.  There is no way in a court of law (that is not corrupt) that such arguments can be made to successfully defend many of the crimes already undertaken against the American People in the Context of Constitutional Law.  That is a huge point -- meaning -- any defense of these acts of fraud can only attempt a defense which twists something -- twists some law -- twists some procedural occurrence in order to defend the fraud.   It cannot be defended FRONT ON.   Meaning:  every effort should be made to foster transparent legal proceedings as close to a jury based format as possible.  When the average person is given the facts they will see truth, and as such the power of Right action over that of Wrong Action wins everytime -- over time perhaps -- and with great sacrifice -- but inexorably wins.  

The Founders went the extra mile America, will you?

http://www.constitution.org/indexco_.htm

Know the Firewall -->

 

 

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 21:42 | 726757 Fearless Rick
Fearless Rick's picture

@ surfsup: Thanks, dude! But here's my take. Let the congress go ahead and retroactively validate MERS and try to go into courts and use the "new" law to prosecute.

First, the howls from legal scholars will be louder than anything you've ever heard before. I don't doubt that some justices - a good number of them - will recuse themselves from foreclosure or property cases involving MERS or any of the big banks.

Most, sadly, will just go along, but the appeals will tie courts in knots for at least a decade. Maybe that's their point, but when it gets to SCOTUS, if those jackals don't do the right thing, then there's no choice. It's march and surround time, complete overthrow of the government, which, in a lot of other nations, I believe already would have occurred.

Americans are pretty tolerant as a group, but piss off enough of them and there's going to be hell to pay. This government is right on the edge of that and they know it and that might be just what they want. You know, guys like Alex Jones have been saying that for years.

They've done enough damage already and the country is probably screwed for the next 20 years or more anyhow, so how much of a stretch is it for most people to jump from, "I'm really pissed" to "i'm in the street" throwing bricks at cops and dodging tear gas canisters?

Not far, I'd say. Could be the big hit of next summer.

With the constitution at the core of any argument against legal standing of MERS, I'd make sure the jack-ass sitting up front understands that he's dealing with MY constitutional rights, and that if I prevail HE or SHE will bear the consequences.

I'm so sick of authoritarians hiding behind bogus law I want to smack a few judges around just for the good feeling I'll get from it.

But, I'll refrain, and let my brain do the fighting mostly. But things aren't getting any prettier, and that cant continue.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 14:02 | 726162 Husk-Erzulie
Husk-Erzulie's picture

Nice post. "know the firewall", nice keeper catchphrase.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 12:57 | 726100 Paul Bogdanich
Paul Bogdanich's picture

Obama was paid to rob a bank and whilst he keeps "looking forward" the statute of limitiations on all the financial and other crimes expires behind him.  Thomas Furgerson had an interesting observation lately when he said:

 

Thomas Ferguson: 2008 had all the earmarks of a classic realigning election, as my old colleague Walter Dean Burnham describes them. In the wake of the financial collapse, it looked for all the world like voters were ready for, even demanding, major reforms. They had elected a Democratic president on a promise of "Change," with both houses of Congress solidly Democratic. That's why many people were thinking that Obama was going give us a modern New Deal. They really believed him when he promised change. Instead, Obama's failure on the economy has discredited the whole idea of the activist state. The dimensions of this failure were spectacular: He didn't move aggressively to combat unemployment, the economic stimulus was half as large as it needed to be, and he didn't deal with the mortgage crisis. So unemployment stayed way up, and many people remain in danger of losing their homes or are underwater on their mortgages, with the whole housing sector stalling out. To make matters worse, the administration lavished aid on the financial sector. The spectacle of the government aiding bankers, who turned around and paid themselves record bonuses, has just been unbearable for millions of people.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 12:57 | 726089 Dapper Dan
Dapper Dan's picture

Would this be a conspiracy?

Yemen?  what the hell  is in Yemen?

 Most occcur at the 10 km range

http://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/recenteqsww/Quakes/quakes_all.html#listtop

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 12:44 | 726083 mrhonkytonk1948
mrhonkytonk1948's picture

Excellent post!  At some point in the utopian future of my imagination, Economics will take its rightful place as a minor specialty in the field of Psychology.  The main  reason Americans were willing to consume (rather than save) over so many post WW2 years was trust that the "system" worked, things always got "better" and any problems were temporary and/or personal rather than systemic.  Like respect, once trust is lost it can take an eternity to regain.  Well done, GW.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 12:35 | 726073 InsanePonziClown
InsanePonziClown's picture

we should bring back the good old days of defense fraud, 1,000 dollar hammers and tenk toilets, at least it was contained, now it's 200k homes for 400k

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 12:34 | 726062 CrackSmokeRepublican
CrackSmokeRepublican's picture

 Burn the Jewish Talmud that Greenspan and Bernanke follow, and which condones lying-swindling to Gentile "Goyim" ... or better yet just the throw all Bankrupt Scamming Madoff Jews out of America.... and you'll see trust rise. --CSR

 

Israel Did 9/11 and Jews at Benador did the Anthrax attacks:

http://theinfounderground.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=5367

http://theinfounderground.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=14&p=50653#p50653

 

Get the Scammers out and you'll see trust come back for a lot of things...

Rabbi Dov Zakheim – Co-author of the PNAC paper on rebuilding America’s defenses advocating the necessity of a Pearl Harbor-like incident to mobilize America. Served as Pentagon comptroller from May 4, 2001 to March 10, 2004. Two large sums of money disappeared from the Pentagon under him. In the beginning $2.3 trillion was reported missing by Donald Rumsfeld (September 10, 2001) and later Zakheim was unable to account for another trillion dollars. Zakheim also had squads of American F-15s and F-16s sold as surplus to Israel at a fraction of their value.

 

 

--CSR

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 13:54 | 726157 Randall Cabot
Randall Cabot's picture

Don't forget the "dancing Israelis" who were set up across the river to film the planes hitting the WTC towers as it happened. They were Mossad agents and released back to Israel without charges.

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 12:19 | 726055 Vendetta
Vendetta's picture

Not to mention the unending attempts to manipulate whatever trust still exists

Sun, 11/14/2010 - 12:18 | 726054 InsanePonziClown
InsanePonziClown's picture

Losing trust, let me count the ways???

 

When what happens generally and globally meets up with real world experiences slow deterioation takes place.

A. Who has not sat in a meeting and contractual obgligations were thrown out the window because no one asked for fullfillment, or had asked yet, even though dozens of promises were made.  Managers want margins or savings and will, as everyone else, leave it too the next guy.

B. Cell phone bills, small thing, yet in my informal survey who has not recieved a bill with an extra hundred or two with no logical explantion on the bill, or from the company when u talk to them, usually this can be resolved in your favor if you our aggresive enough, yet, u know dozens of folks don't call until it happens 3 times to them.

C. Stupidity abounds in corporations.  I moved in August, cancelled cable inet on Aug. 15th on the phone, had an agreed upon price.  My intentions were too pay complete bill first week of September.  Since July bill was now overdue got the calls, okay called back and said fine, I'd pay the agreed upon price right now on the phone........Nope, somewhere somehow, the prior agreed upon price and cancellation notice were not recorded somewhere, BS I called, and got two steps above on managers.  After 45 of total BS by them, I told them a dozen times, take price now, or you'll never get paid.  Now the difference was fifty bucks.  Take 250 now, or never see 300, and I'll feel good and use you again.  Note, I'd been a customer for ten years, always paid.  For some reason the could not grasp the total complexity of something so simple.

Will I pay them, yeah, fifty bucks here and there and never use them again.  So, now we all lose trust, me the 3 phone reps and the corporation. 

 

Now, I had a similar experience with my gas company on change over for the new folks.  I explained I did not want the new people to not have gas for a week, so I said let me know when it's changed over.  Rather than call back we agreed based on historical averages bill should be X.  I said, that's reasonable, let me pay that now and we agreed they'd send me a check for the difference in the mail.  Got my check last week.

Time Warner, I will never buy your stock or use u again.  Atmos Energy, I'm in love, lol.

 

 

 

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