Tuesday, March 25, 2008

'Iraq's Corporate Genocide'

From Al-Jazeera :

" ... This war has been too long, too painful, too costly, too evil, too inhumane and too unjust to simply be deemed an invasion, or even worse, a liberation. Today, right here, right now, I want this war to be recognised for what it truly is - a genocide against the Iraqi people.

It is a corporate hate crime. It is not a "just" war. It does not have a "just" cause. It lacks legitimate authority, it was executed with all the wrong intentions, it was certainly not a last resort, the probability of success was slim and most of all the weaponry has gone beyond "smart bombs".

If the international community recognises the conflicts in Bosnia, Armenia and Rwanda as genocides where human rights are replaced with the extermination of ethnic groups, then Iraq deserves the same recognition - and more.

'Corporate genocide'

Rape, indiscriminate killings and torture are all elements of genocide, but the situation in Iraq goes beyond that, fitting the description of something that is more 21st-century - a corporate genocide.

In stating that Iraq's genocide is distinct, the point is not to reduce the relevance of previous genocides or leave similar slaughters in other regions unacknowledged.

Rather, it is to recognise that while the perception of genocide in Iraq is not new, the extent to which it is now a valid belief is.

Corporate genocide is the mass cooperation of a business-led military invasion, where a population is sacrificed for the economic profit of the invader. A corporate genocide goes beyond blind hate and killing innocent civilians to gain power and territory.

In pursuing its economic strategies, the US has caused the death and injury, deliberate or not, of millions of Iraqis.

Thriving on war

Foreign businesses that profit and thrive on war have gained new power in Iraq, but lack accountability. Private security firms have little motivation to promote peace - though it is their job - and to end this genocide.

Terrorising my people puts bread in their mouths and takes it away from the mouths of starving Iraqi children. Our war is their income.

To keep the money flowing, private security firms dehumanise Iraqi resistance and rebel groups by labelling them as terrorists. The international propagation of this portrayal is one element in the structuring of a corporate genocide.

Another is the inability of neither international law nor the international community to hold these firms accountable for their actions, including their killings of innocent people.

Individuals perceived to be a threat to the firm are treated as such and can be disposed of under the false guise of an attack, leaving the firms unaccountable. And because these firms have power, they can easily deny misusing it and be believed, if they admit to using it at all.

Not taking responsibility for destroying the lives of men, women and children marks a new chapter in the book of corporate genocide. ... "


The inevitable collapse of the dollar

Euro/Dollar Rate:

The current account deficit:

Americans are living beyond their means and Asia is currently financing that. But eventually the Asians/Europeans will stop financing the USA and then the bubble will burst.


[with thanks to Psychedelic Tourist]

Thirteen a perfect circle

Movie review of 'Thirteen' from Ask.com :

"Thirteen" caught me completely off guard. I'd only heard enough about the movie to know it was about the difficulties of growing up in today's world as seen through the eyes of a couple of young girls. That hardly prepared me for this devastatingly frank glimpse at what life feels like to contemporary 13 year olds.

This fiercely realistic, truthful movie is one of this year's scariest offerings. Forget "House of 1,000 Corpses," "Freddy vs. Jason," and "Jeepers Creeper 2," none of those movies have anything on the horror that emerges in "Thirteen." The angst of being a teen, wearing the trendiest clothes, hanging with the popular kids, and fitting in to the mold of junior high school is put under a magnifying glass and dissected in detail in Catherine Hardwicke’s rookie directorial effort, “Thirteen.”...

IMDB : Nominated for Oscar. Another 13 wins & 33 nominations more

The Assassination of New York Governor Eliot Spitzer

'When God talks, is He as profane as Norman Lear?'

Perhaps the largest crowd of the three-day event is assembled in the Regency ballroom. A very attractive woman steps up to the podium, flanked by 15-foot Orwellian screens of her welcome visage. She proudly declares that at age twelve, full of burgeoning religious conviction, she began a life of prayer, telling God “If you are real I want to know you.”
That burning conviction has stayed with her ever since. As a woman she’s finally met someone who has helped her realize what it means to know God. “His is the voice I hear saying ‘they shall know you by your deeds.’

Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome Norman Lear! Founder of People for the American Way, Truth and Life! Okay, maybe the introduction was more humble than that, but it was effusive and delivered by Iara Peng, who heads up Young People For — that’s the full name, Young People For — an organization “empowering the next generation of young progressive leaders” and funded by Lear. Either way, the famed TV producer and liberal activist is here to offer up his “Reflections on God and Country from the Left.”

Still quick-witted and spry at 85, Lear gets right down to business, warming up the crowd with a few jokes fit for nightly news commercials. In Lear’s expert opinion, America is suffering from “a massive case of electile dysfunction. Let’s all say that together.”

“A MASSIVE CASE OF ELECTILE DYSFUNCTION!” the crowd barks back. Can the man get an “amen”?

“I’ll donate $1,000 dollars to any organization that thinks they can come up with a more accurate description for the predicament we find ourselves in,” says Lear. “We’re in deep sh**.”

US 'deploys nuclear sub to Persian Gulf'

An American nuclear submarine has crossed the Suez Canal to join the US fleet stationed in the Persian Gulf, Egyptian sources say.
Egyptian officials reported that the nuclear submarine crossed the canal along with a destroyer on Friday and Egyptian forces were put on high alert when the navy convoy was passing through the canal.
An American destroyer recently left the Persian Gulf, heading towards the Mediterranean Sea; earlier Thursday, a US Navy rescue ship crossed the canal to enter the Red Sea.
The deployment comes as recent reports allege that US Vice President Dick Cheney is seeking to rally the support of Middle Eastern states for launching an attack on Iran.
This is while US officials deny that Cheney's Mideast tour is linked to a possible military attack on Iran.
According to the latest reports, in recent months a major part of the US Navy has been deployed in and around the Persian Gulf.
The fleet is armed with nuclear weapons and cruise missiles and carries hundreds of aircraft and rapid reaction forces.
~ from Iran's Press TV ~

Horror Today-An Interview with Rue Morgue's Rodrigo Gudino

As if it needed further validation as the premiere publication on horror, Rue Morgue recently won the Rondo Hatton Award for Best Magazine of 2007.  We sat down with its founder, filmmaker Rodrigo Gudiño, to learn why horror fans (surprise, surprise) are among the most creative, introspective fans out there. 
[ ... ]
Firefox News:  What I admire most about Rue Morgue is the approach implied by the phrase “Horror in Culture & Entertainment.”  That “in culture” separates it from the rest of the pack.  So what are horror film fans missing if they're not aware of the broader genre's history and impact?  Or more positively, what's to be gained by looking at horror through a more inclusive lens that takes in comics, literature, and music rather than just focusing on buzz-worthy new movies?
Rodrigo Gudino:  Back in 1998, shortly after starting Rue Morgue, I was approached about launching a similar “culture & entertainment” magazine focusing on science fiction.  I was reluctant for a lot of reasons, but nevertheless did a little bit of research on it anyway.  What I found, among other things, is that science fiction fans and horror fans seemed to deviate in one important respect:  the former were primarily consumers, whereas the latter were more apt to respond to the genre creatively.  Horror fans started bands, drew monsters, wrote stories, launched horror film nights, tattooed themselves, etc.  I suspect that part of this means that a large [segment] of horror fans are primarily fans of horror imagery, and that they are drawn to film because it is currently the vehicle where that imagery is most powerfully represented.  Anyway, looking at the genre in its greater cultural context is a way to appreciate this universal something about horror movies that attracts us to them in the first place.  Also, because the horror genre is largely comprised of taboo subject matter, it is necessarily political, especially regarding ideas of morality and censorship.  To lose oneself in the imagery of horror films without having a regard for this is to divest the genre of a large part of its power.
Let's stick with culture, in particular the wider artistic context of which horror is inevitably part.  When I see your work, I think "Here’s an artist who's deeply interested in the possibilities of narrative film in its short form.  Period."  I don't think, "Here's a director whose only frame of reference is horror and he just happens to be making short films."   So I'm curious about which filmmakers, either of shorts or features, you find inspiring who are either non-horror or tangential to the genre in some way.  And under what conditions can someone like you get the cultural respect afforded to mainstream filmmakers?
Unfortunately, many horror filmmakers are either unaware or uninterested in the possibilities of their movies working outside the genre, and so they are content to make movies that are simply referential to other horror movies.  Thanks for noticing that I am not one of those filmmakers!  Some of the people who have really opened my eyes include Kubrick, Fellini, Jodorowsky, Bergman, Michael Mann, P.T. Anderson, Todd Solondz and Milos Forman.  But really all cinema has been inspirational to me in some way or another—soap operas, porn, infomercials, televangelism—I can honestly say I have found them all to be valuable.  I work from the philosophy that all cinema operates around certain fixed principles and this has allowed me to find almost every type of film relevant to my creative process.  With respect to attention and cultural respect from the mainstream, I really don't think about that right now.  Those factions will sit up and take notice in their own time, because I think my films will eventually demand their attention, irrespective of how they are marketed.

Nostradamus delusion leads to bayoneting of family member

A man so devoted to the writings of Nostradamus he read copies of original transcripts in medieval French was yesterday ordered into psychiatric care for killing step-grandfather with a bayonet.

Matthew James Woodroffe-Hill, 41, of Tenterfield, was found not guilty by mental illness at Lismore Supreme Court to murdering Mark Hutchinson, 82, at his home in Armidale, on January 12, 2007.

Woodroffe-Hill had no history of violence or mental illness but from March 2006 and as a result of his research he believed catastrophic events would occur and that he was Nostradamus' 'son of the west'.

He drove to Sydney with his wife and two children to continue his research at mosques and to deliver a message of impending doom.

But the journey descended into a nightmare of paranoid delusions including spies, terrorists and mythical creatures.

~ read on... ~


The Alternative Story Of 9/11- A Pakistani Speaks Out His Mind

Uncountable attempts have been made to understand the sociology of Osama’s mind. Similarly, a host of books are available in the market that try to explain the genesis of al Qaeda and its delinquent orientations. Only a few works, however, stand out in the march of rational explanation. Peter Bergen’s Holy War Inc and Jason Burke’s Al Qaeda are the most promising works among them. Add to the list the 9/11 Commission Report and you have a good idea where does informed Western opinion stand today. But in a world so pregnant with secrets and mysteries, books do not tell everything.

Has it not occurred to you that when President George W Bush was really struggling in the opinion polls against John Kerry, Osama through his televised address rescued him just like Father Christmas? Yeah, right, the picture quality of the address resembled more the PIXAR’s computer animations rather than the footage of a man’s live speech, but that is a matter solely for the American people to decide whether their government was bluffing them or not.

Similarly let us talk of the Project for the New American Century, a so-called non-profit think tank comprising Reaganiites, established in 1997 to oppose the isolationist tendencies of the Clinton administration, and to pressure the government to seek an increased budget for defense purposes in order to transform the US military stature in more aggressive terms. The Statement of Principles of this think-tank contains signatures of the distinguished list of America’s who’s who, including Jeb Bush, Dick Cheney, Zalmay Khalilzad, Dan Quayle, Donald Rumsfeld and Paul Wolfowitz. The Project produced a very interesting report in September 2000 titled, “America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century”.

A black comment (if seen without overblown biases) regarding the military capacity building reads like this: “Further, the process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event — like a new Pearl Harbor.” Does it imply that this project was emphasizing the need for a new Pearl Harbor or may we say 9/11? No wonder then that 9/11 could take place only during the reign of a majority of signatories of its charter. Later the one eager to rebut this hypothesis inquired, whether the mere mention of the term new Pearl Harbor was proof good enough to work as an indictment? Folks, if you are expecting graphic and first hand proof of such would-be conspiracies then you are of course joking. If someone goes to the extent to plotting just a huge conspiracy he most certainly will not to leave any proof behind. What we can then do is to connect the available dots. 

[ ... ]

Now whenever Jason Burke or Peter Bergen try to qualify the CIA’s helplessness in mentoring of Osama and his cabal, they use Brigadier (r) Mohammad Yousaf and Mark Adkin’s book titled The Bear Trap (Afghanistan’s Untold Story). I am sure that Pakistan’s Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) must only be lamenting the severe damage this silly little book has caused. The book produces a detailed account of the Afghan war, and at times you can see the author’s overblown attempts at taking credit. In his desperate attempts at doing so, and perhaps under the influence of the Western co-author, the poor chap inhales his own propaganda that whatever clout the CIA had over the Afghan war was through Pakistan’s ISI. Now whosoever has studied the CIA’s last 60 years of operations, will know that it is not an agency too innocent to sever all its contacts with the Afghan struggle just upon a Pakistani demand. In this situation, the best insurance policy — apart from the continuation of the CIA’s station in Kabul headed by Graham Fuller until 1978 — was introduction of an element into the war that was not only more manageable by the CIA, but also more capable of gaining local trust. The Arabs could hence easily be used in this war, to both countercheck Pakistan’s sincerity in the war, and thwart its influence in the field.

In such a situation, the young member of a family so close to ex-CIA chief George HW Bush, that its head even met him on the very day of 9/11, went to Afghanistan to take part in Jihad. It is true that during the early days of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, George Bush senior, who had detached himself from the CIA only in 1977, still had considerable clout with the agency and the bin Laden family simultaneously. In those days, he was pursuing his business interests that also involved the Saudi Binladin Group. By the time the September 11 attacks were carried out, these interests and cooperation had culminated into such a relationship that Osama’s brother Shafig bin Laden and GHW Bush met on the very day of the attacks in a board meeting of the Carlyle Group.

Osama, meanwhile, was so well-known to the ISI during the Afghan war that Brig. Yousaf’s book did not mention his name even once. Even if it wanted it badly, ISI could not stonewall the CIA’s access to the Afghan war. Instead, it was perfectly possible for the CIA to stonewall ISI on the alternative arrangement. Myths like these were invented to give the ISI a fake sense of ownership. Similarly, another excuse tabled to make sense of the CIA’s lack of involvement in the war is that the US didn’t want to be caught so deeply involved in the struggle. But this flimsy argument is nothing but a smokescreen. The CIA is not an agency based totally on the Anglo-Saxon US citizens alone. If it wanted to, it could never be caught involved in the war. And in those days the US involvement was an open secret.

[ ... ]

The most significant clue comes from Bernard Henri Levy’s book that was quoted at the beginning. In this French book, the author makes no bones about the fact that he received substantial information on Daniel Pearl’s assassination from RAW. In fact, Sudindrah Datta, the then deputy to the RAW chief, is quoted during his meeting with him at RAW headquarters saying, “We know you are an old friend of our country. But first tell me. It seems you have just been in Pakistan…How are those lunatics?” Levy’s book is a classic study in Pakistan bashing. And why should he not be, he is perhaps the only Western journalist who took active part in the war against Pakistan for the creation of Bangladesh. What is amazing about it is that it contains graphic details of Pearl’s execution, albeit as a figment of imagination. The excuse of consulting RAW is said to be the fact that Omar Sheikh, the said assassin of Pearl, spent some time caught in India. When you read the details of Omar Sheikh’s arrest in India, you get the sense of a premeditated surrender. Somehow, it seems that he was there with a view to be apprehended. A willing scapegoat for something bigger. May we say legend building for the sake of enhanced credibility in the Muslim movements and Pakistan?

In India what happened to Omar Sheikh is a story that only comes from Indian sources. But we know one thing. Omar, before coming to Pakistan, had also gone to the Balkans to fight for the Bosnians when actually the CIA itself was raising Muslim fighters to fight against Milosevic’s armies, the last vestiges of the communist order in Europe. The CIA’s operatives, coupled with the Muslim clergy, used to visit Western educational institutions and induct as many Muslim students as they could find willing to join. The next thing we find is Omar heading to Pakistan, where he would successfully fabricate claims of association with the Pakistani secret agencies. We have discussed the presence of some loose cannons inside the Pakistani secret agencies. There is a good chance that some association with such elements might have taken place. The next thing we know is he is caught in India. And then the December 1999 Indian plane hijack takes place. The plane is taken to Kandahar where, let us suppose, Osama compels the Taliban to tolerate its presence. India — quite unlike its past legacy — negotiates with the terrorists and frees some alleged terrorists, which include Omar Sheikh. And is it not baffling that the very man again to be tracked down as the assassin of Danny is none other than Omar, the very man with the Indian pointer on his head?

[ ... ]

If the US and the Indian intelligence agencies are involved in handling the terror networks and then exploiting their work to gain maximum political profit, why do religious folks fall for it? Why cannot they see whose interests they are serving? Are they equal partners in the game, or are they bloodthirsty demons so committed to quench their thirst that they consciously ignore the difference. I think jumping to the conclusion that they are driven by ulterior motives or their beastly urge to kill is a notion only too simplistic. Things do not happen in that simple a way in the real world.

In order to understand the complex phenomenon of collusion between the intelligence agencies and the terrorist non-state actors, we have to understand what currency is used to cajole and coax people into doing their bidding. The most credible currency in this context is credibility itself. There is no gainsaying that these are difficult times. In such circumstances, it is perfectly natural for people in general and the Muslims in particular to feel dizzy and uncomfortable. As this pain and frustration does not find any channel for catharsis, people turn to more desperate options available. In this situation when you do not rule out violence as an option, you essentially turn to the established names in the field. Once you have reached any such person and committed some small acts under his/her influence, you stop questioning the rationale and means. The only ones the manipulators need to puppeteer are the ones at the top.

Osama’s profile building was certainly done meticulously. Since 1996, the US administration is pumping air into this balloon. Osama’s name has been publicized so voraciously in the last 10 years that activists working for their respective freedom struggles, or others simply disillusioned by their lives, find it pretty tempting to work for him. Again considerable care has been taken in projecting Osama’s image. In all photo-ops he is shown as a humble person with no trace of malice. Such publicity essentially has its bearing on the minds of those looking at him with hope.

[ ... ]

Ironically, in one of the formative mythical documents titled Postmodern Terrorism: New Rules for an Old Game published in 1996, Laqueur pointed out: “But with the new technologies and the changed nature of the world in which they operate, a handful of angry Samsons and disciples of apocalypse would suffice to cause havoc. Chances are that of 100 attempts at terrorist superviolence, 99 would fail. According to Nostradamus, “a great ‘king of terror’ will come from heaven in July 1999.” Nostradamus clicked with the mass media and the US authorities.

Laqueur’s co-author and fellow Jew Krauthammer is a renowned neo-con today. As Laqueur went places, he stayed a professor at Georgetown University from 1976 to 1988. After the demise of the Cold War, the architects of the struggle like Samuel Huntington were faced with the challenge of reinventing the threat when people like Francis Fukuyama were claiming that the West had won the war of ideas and therefore the end of history was at hand. The US establishment and the military-industrial complex were worried that people like Al Gore were now keen to bring technologies like the internet out of the military labs and globalize them. Huntington exploited Toynbee’s definition of civilizations and proclaimed that a clash between Islam and the West was imminent. The US establishment chose the incubus of terrorism to articulate its anxieties.

The CIA is a gift of US President Harry Truman, who almost miraculously moulded Roosevelt’s Four Policemen friendship overtures towards Moscow into general antipathy towards the Russians. Truman’s gift, like his use of nuclear weapons on Japan, was targeted at the USSR. Now the CIA knew fully well that with the fall of the USSR, the rules of engagement will change. It wanted an ideology but there was no image available more haunting than the return of Saladin on horseback.

Likewise, with the rise of the Taliban as our desperate attempt at introducing our favored order in Afghanistan, the Indian establishment was flustered. India wanted to exert itself as a global power. Ashok Singal, the head of Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), had long been saying that India should forget that there was any other power in the world except the US and Israel. BJP’s success then introduced another dire phenomenon. It opened the doors of administrative control to the Hindu hardliners. India, that had considerable clout in the Arab world, wanted Pakistan as the price for its cooperation with the US neo-cons. The neo-cons were happy to pay this price but only if the ground realities in Pakistan permitted. The leader of the Arab militants, Osama bin Laden hence has been challenging the existence of Pakistan from the very start.

There are some other parallels too between the rise of Osama bin Laden, his notoriously popular fatwa and the CIA’s desperation. George Tenet was confirmed as the Director of Central Intelligence after Bill Clinton could not get his own nominee approved from Congress. Tenet was also recommended by George Bush Senior to his son when he became president. Osama bin Laden was the precious son of the Bush family friends, the Bin Ladens. The family stakes could have forced them readily to send their son to Afghanistan upon the insistence of the Bushes and their intelligence cohorts. Ayman Al Zawahiri, an Egyptian doctor, was in prison on the charges of conspiring to assassinate Anwar Sadat during the early days of the Afghan war.

Nowhere in the West would you find a definitive remark on his release even though a few imagine that he was released as no case was proven against him. It is claimed by Muntasir Al-Zayyat, his lawyer, that he broke down under torture and revealed the name of an assassin. Then after being released he ended up serving the US interests in Afghanistan. Is it not possible, that in order to keep a double check on Pakistan’s service in the US proxy war in Afghanistan, the CIA was recruiting people from the Arab world and the Egyptian government itself gifted them Zawahiri if he was not already in their service?

~ full article ~

'Paulson's Lament: Deregulation has been a Failure'

You know things are very very bad on Wall Street when a guy like Henry Paulson -- Treasury secretary, solid Republican, and former Goldman Sachs CEO -- joins the crowd calling for more regulation over the financial markets.
Paulson spared no one in his criticism Thursday of the excesses of deregulation that has now created the worst global financial crisis in a generation, threatening the health of the U.S. economy, the savings of millions of Americans, and the survival of some of the biggest financial institutions in the world. See full story.
Wall Street and Washington both failed big time, he said. Wall Street invented new ways to make money by selling securities so complicated that no one could really follow which shell the pea was under. Fortunes were made on the paper Wall Street sold.
At the same time, Washington's watchdogs were dozing, tranquilized by the false assurance that Wall Street would police its own.

Voting in Shangri-la as 'Bhutan becomes world's newest democracy'

Brisk voting was underway on Monday for the first ever parliamentary elections in Bhutan, marking the end of the 100-year-old monarchy in the Himalayan kingdom.

“The enthusiasm is tremendous with heavy polling recorded so far till midday in all the 20 districts. This is a historic moment for all of us,” said Bhutan's Chief Election Commissioner Dasho Kunzang Wangdi.

Elections are being held for the 47-member National Assembly or the lower house in parliament with 318,465 registered voters eligible to exercise their franchise in the largely Buddhist nation of about 600,000 people. Bhutan's first elected prime minister will be from among the National Assembly members.

~ read on... ~


Impeachment trial hangs over Musharraf's head

The prospect of Pervez Musharraf being the first president in the history of Pakistan to be subject to an impeachment trial hangs over his head like the Sword of Damocles. The Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and its allied parties in parliament are planning to impeach him with a combined two-thirds vote in a joint sitting of the parliament within two weeks of the formation of government at the centre.

Well-informed circles in the Zardari-led PPP and the Sharif-led PML-N say the impeachment of Musharraf may move to the top of the government’s agenda, putting behind the restoration of the deposed judges, keeping in view the disturbing signals from the presidency. These circles added that the new parliament could initiate impeachment proceedings against Musharraf on the charges of violating and abrogating the 1973 Constitution twice in his eight-year rule. According to the Constitution, a collective two-thirds vote is required from a joint sitting of the National Assembly and the Senate to impeach the president.

~ more... ~


Rachel Carson's Ecological Critique

Rachel Carson was born just over 100 years ago in 1907. Her most famous book Silent Spring, published in 1962, is often seen as marking the birth of the modern environmental movement. Although an immense amount has been written about Carson and her work, the fact that she was objectively a “woman of the left” has often been downplayed. Today the rapidly accelerating planetary ecological crisis, which she more than anyone else alerted us to, calls for an exploration of the full critical nature of her thought and its relation to the larger revolt within science with which she was associated.

Carson was first and foremost a naturalist and scientist. But she was propelled by her understanding of the destructive ecological forces at work in modern society into the role of radical critic. A recent biography attempts to capture this in its title: The Gentle Subversive. The principal causes of ecological degradation, Carson insisted, were “the gods of profit and production.” The chief obstacle to a sustainable relation to the environment lay in the fact that we live “in an era dominated by industry, in which the right to make a dollar at any cost is seldom challenged.”1

Silent Spring was directed against the chemical industry and its production of deadly pesticides. Carson combined the best scientific information then available with the skills of a great writer, and had an extraordinary effect in raising public concern over this issue. Yet, despite a number of victories, Carson and those who followed in her footsteps lost the war against synthetic pesticides, which she preferred to call “biocides.” Although she conceded that there were some situations where the application of such chemicals might be appropriate, she strongly believed “the elimination of the use of persistent toxic pesticides should be the goal”—as stated in the 1963 report on pesticides of the President’s Science Advisory Committee, which she regarded as a “vindication” of her views. Chemical control needed to be replaced wherever practicable by biological control (organic methods relying on natural enemies of the pests). She called this, in the concluding chapter of her book, “The Other Road.” Nevertheless, except for the banning of a few of the most deadly toxins such as DDT, the chemical industry triumphed, seeing an expansion of the production of this class of chemicals.2

This growing use of synthetic pesticides had nothing to do with the rational application of science.

[ ... ]

She accurately predicted that dependence on synthetic pesticides would result in a pesticide treadmill as organisms evolved rapidly into more resistant forms requiring either higher doses or new biocides. “The chemical war,” she wrote, “is never won, and all life is caught in its violent crossfire.” By the late 1980s the production of pesticide active ingredients, much of it destined for U.S. farms, had increased to more than twice that of the early 1960s when Carson wrote Silent Spring. In 1999 over 100 million U.S. households applied some type of pesticide to their homes, lawns, and gardens. Many such chemicals on the market today have not been adequately tested. Meanwhile U.S. agribusiness has continued to produce and export banned pesticides to other countries. Some of the food imported to the United States from abroad is grown using these substances.

~ read on... ~

The Hellenic Banana Republic...

...cannot be recognized in this statement issued by Greece's Ambassador to the United States. One would never know this is a country whose own allies do not allow it to expand its territorial limits at sea to the internationally recognized 12-mile limit, or bothered to show they cared when foreign special forces landed on its territory in 1997:
"On March 25, the Greek nation celebrates the greatest day in its modern history. One hundred and eighty seven years ago, the heroes of 1821, faithful trustees of the Hellenic heritage, inspired by the ideals of liberty, freedom and dignity, took arms against a mighty empire, sacrificed their lives and managed to establish the modern Greek state.

Today, on the occasion of this celebration, we all pay tribute to the sacrifice of our heroic ancestors and, especially, to the Greeks of Diaspora who generated the movement of the Modern Greek Enlightenment and provided the spark of the 1821.

Ever since, Hellenism was found in the vanguard of nations fighting for freedom and democracy. During these 187 years of national statehood, Greece has fulfilled all its major objectives: we achieved our territorial integration, participated in all major events of the 20th century, including the two World Wars, built a modern and democratic society, forged strong and enduring alliances and acceded into the European Union.

This was not an unhindered course. There have been a lot of obstacles and setbacks. However, thanks to our profound belief in the same high ideals, which inspired our heroic forefathers, we overcame them, sometimes against all odds.

This is the reason why Greek Revolution has constituted a source of inspiration for many other nations. It is no coincidence that each year, the White House and the US Congress honor Greek Independence Day. Besides, the Founding Fathers of the United States drew heavily on the ancient Greek political experience and philosophy when forming American representative democracy..."

My personal salute is to the people who toil without succor through the corruption in this land.

Keeping a tight lid on Australia's Jewish sex scandal

Australia’s tight-knit ultra-Orthodox community is being roiled by allegations that the principal of a girls’ high school molested a number of her former students.

Malka Leifer, headmistress of Melbourne’s Adass Israel Girls’ School for the past five years, left the country within 24 hours of board members confronting her with allegations of sexual misconduct March 4, according to school board members.

Her departure is particularly controversial, due to allegations that she left with up to $100,000 borrowed from community members. A teacher at the school told the Forward that Leifer borrowed money from members of the community who were unaware of the impending furor.

From Head flees over school scandal

An Israeli principal at the centre of an alleged lesbian sex scandal at a strictly Orthodox girls’ school in Melbourne has fled the country amid allegations of molestation.

Malka Leifer, head of the Adass Israel Girls’ School for five years, flew home on March 5 — less than 24 hours after the school board confronted her with allegations of sexual misconduct.

She denied any wrongdoing, according to Binyomin Koppel, the president of the Adass Israel community.

At least three alleged victims are believed to have come forward to counsellors. The JC understands that they are recent graduates who became teachers at the school.

Mrs Leifer, who is in her late 40s and has eight children, is believed to have gone into hiding at her parents’ home in Bnei Brak.

The school has engaged a number of psychologists to counsel the 250 students, as well their parents, former students and staff.

It is also alleged that, before fleeing, Mrs Leifer borrowed up to $A100,000 (£46,000) from Adass members who were unaware of the scandal.

The school’s spokesman, Norman Rosenbaum, said he knew nothing about that allegation. But he strenuously denied any inference that the school paid for Mrs Leifer to flee.

What You Can't Say About Israel in Australia

When the Truth Comes to Town
"Melbourne University Publishing should drop this whole disgusting project. If they proceed, I urge the Australian Jewish community, and particularly The Australian Jewish News, to treat it with dignified silence. That is our best response. If, God forbid, it is published, don't give them a dollar. Don't buy the book."
Federal Labor MP Michael Danby, Australian Jewish News, August 25 2005
I'm currently writing a book on the Israel/Palestine conflict with Melbourne University Publishing (MUP) and it's due to be released in May 2006. After sending my articles on the subject to various publications around the world, I was already used to Jews and non-Jews writing and calling with abuse and outright hatred. After my recent column on the Gaza withdrawal, a Sydney doctor emailed me and asked: "How well do you think you would be doing with a name like yours if Adolf would have won?" and "As far as your book goes, I might just take a page out of Hitler's book on that one."

"The degree of abuse and outright threats now being directed at anyone - academic, analyst, reporter - who dares to criticise Israel (or dares to tell the truth about the Palestinian uprising) is fast reaching McCarthyite proportions", wrote Robert Fisk in December 2000. "The attempt to force the media to obey Israel's rules is now international". The situation has only worsened since 9/11.

Rachel Corrie memorialized in Nablus

Rachel Corrie's parents dedicated a memorial to her in the West Bank city of Nablus.

The ceremony last Thursday marked five years since the U.S. peace activist was killed attempting to block an Israeli bulldozer razing a Palestinian house in the Gaza Strip. She was 23.

At the event her mother, Cindy, said her daughter believed that Palestine could become a "source of hope for people struggling all over the world," The Associated Press reported.

Corrie's parents have led a campaign to prevent Caterpillar from selling its bulldozers to Israel.

Israel says it uses the bulldozers to raze dwellings that harbor terrorists or their weapons-smuggling operations.

~ link ~


Reporters Without Borders Disrupt Olympic Torch Lighting Ceremony

People who tried to disrupt the ceremony of lighting the Olympic torch in Ancient Olympia, Greece, on Monday were members of the press freedom group Reporters Without Borders (known by its French acronym RSF), Reuters reports.
In a statement released on its official Web site (www.rsf.org) RSF says: "We cannot let the Chinese government seize the Olympic flame, a symbol of peace without condemning the dramatic human rights situation."
"If the Olympic flame is sacrificed, human rights are even more so," said in the statement.
The demonstrators tried to disrupt the ceremony when the Beijing Games chief Liu Qi was delivering his speech. One of the protesters managed to unfurl a banner with an inscription "Boycott the Games in the country that tramples on human rights."
Another protester approached to the tribune where the International Olympic Committee (IOC) chief Jacques Rogge was staying and shouted “Freedom! Freedom!”
~ From Vostok Media ~

Bush insists war "will merit the sacrifice"

As the American military death toll in Iraq reached 4,000, President Bush conferred yesterday with top U.S. officials in Washington and in Baghdad and vowed in a public statement that the outcome of the war "will merit the sacrifice."

Bush held a two-hour videoconference with Gen. David H. Petraeus and U.S. Ambassador Ryan C. Crocker. Petraeus reiterated his plan to halt U.S. troop withdrawals, begun late last fall, at the end of July. At that point, he has said, he will "evaluate" whether Iraqi forces and a reduced number of U.S. troops can maintain the lower levels of violence.

[ ... ]

Late Sunday night, the U.S. command in Baghdad announced that four soldiers had been killed by a makeshift bomb in southern Baghdad, bringing the total number of U.S. troops killed to 4,000 since the war began in March 2003. Dozens of Iraqis were also killed in violence around the country Sunday.

Overall attacks in Iraq have sharply declined in Iraq, but the trend has begun to plateau over the past three months -- car bombings have decreased, but suicide bombings have increased. Military officials said that Petraeus will tell Congress that the withdrawal, which has now reached about 9,000 troops, will continue with three additional brigades to be withdrawn without replacement by July 31.

Although administration officials have said that U.S. troop strength at that point should be about where it was before a "surge" in deployments began last spring -- approximately 130,000 -- the military official said the net number remaining may be larger. "They're in the process now of trying to scrub the numbers," he said of Petraeus's command in Baghdad. "Figuring out boots on the ground is difficult because . . . units come in at different sizes, people have left, people have been wounded."

There are similar difficulties, he said, in determining the "battlefield geometry" that will enable the withdrawal of entire combat brigades. Brigades are seldom deployed intact, and their battalions are often scattered. While one battalion could be withdrawn without replacement, others may have to be replaced by U.S. or Iraqi forces from elsewhere.

[ ... ]

In a statement to reporters, he spoke of the U.S. civilians who have died in Iraq and said: "I will vow so long as I am president to make sure that those lives were not lost in vain."

Bush will attend a similar briefing by Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates and military leaders today at the Pentagon, but administration officials said they do not expect any new decisions or departures from current policy.

One official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said that after months of friction among civilian and military leaders -- including over concerns about overall stress on the military -- there is little debate over the basic Iraq strategy for the next six months. The only real question, he said, is how long the "pause" in withdrawals after July will last.

~ more... ~


Rainbow Warriors

Gonzo's widow: "I'm going to get hell for this interview"

She had vaguely heard of him but had never read his work. Not his chronicle of living with the Hell’s Angels or any of his various pieces of journalism; not even his masterpiece, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas – that seminal 1972 novel in which Thompson, thinly disguised as crazy hack Raoul Duke, goes with his Cuban attorney on a drug-and-booze-fuelled jaunt to the gambling capital of Nevada.

Perhaps her ignorance was just as well. Through his writing, Thompson comes across as an alarming figure, capable of living above all known limits of excess. In the event, she says, “we became instant friends. I fell in love with his voice on the phone even before meeting him”. Although eloquently aggressive on the page, Thompson was apparently every inch the gent: “He was a gracious and a beautiful man. I was very comfortable with him.”

He hired her as his “researcher, editor, photocopier and cook” and she moved into his sprawling home – Owl Farm in Aspen, Colorado – a year later in 2000. Although he continued to be gentlemanly in his ways, it was clearly a feisty relationship.

“We were always fighting,” Anita admits. “We started fighting almost the day we met, but the fights were pretty dramatic towards the end.” She pauses. “We had pretty loud fights. We were pretty intense people.

“We had to make a living, so my job was to get him to write, and his job was to write so we could pay the bills. So there was tension there. We were always on deadline.”

[ ... ]

On the day of Thompson’s death, the scene unfolded thus: his only son, Juan, from his former marriage, was down from his home in Denver and staying at Owl Farm with his wife and son Will, 7. The night before, Thompson – who loved to perform pranks and adored anything to do with guns, had decided to combine both passions.

“He was pointing a pellet gun around the house and aimed it at a gong next to my head,” says Anita. Although the image of Thompson capering around with an air rifle could have come straight from the Fear and Loathing archive, Anita was not amused: “I had never seen him act that crazy around the house. He was very careful and responsible with guns. This was the first time I had seen him be so sloppy – particularly with Will in the room.”

His behaviour provoked a huge row. “We had been in a fight over that, and the next day I was still angry about the night before,” she says. It was at that point that she went off to her yoga class at the gym, 26 minutes away by car.


~ more... ~


National Bolshevik Bolts for Ukraine

The fiancee of opposition activist Yury Chervochkin, who died last year of injuries suffered in a murky beating, has fled Russia and requested political asylum in Ukraine.

Anna Ploskonosova, a 20-year-old activist with the banned National Bolshevik Party from Tula, submitted her asylum application to immigration officials in the central Ukrainian city of Vinnitsa on March 9, she said from the city by telephone Friday.

Yelena Mamentova, a spokeswoman for Ukraine's State Committee for Nationalities and Religion, which deals with asylum requests, confirmed that Ploskonosova's application had been received.

Ploskonosova is the latest of the organization's activists to flee to Ukraine to escape what they call fabricated criminal cases against them.

Her fiance, Chervochkin, was an National Bolshevik activist in the Moscow region city of Serpukhov. On Nov. 22, he called a reporter from opposition leader Garry Kasparov's web site, Kasparov.ru, to say he was being followed by local police officers.

Hours later Chervochkin, 22, was discovered unconscious outside his apartment building after apparently having been savagely beaten. He died on Dec. 10 after spending three weeks in a coma.

His fellow activists say he had been promoting an opposition rally to be held on Nov. 24. The opposition coalition The Other Russia has accused officers from the anti-organized crime department of the Serpukhov police of assaulting Chervochkin.

No suspects have been identified or detained in connection with the attack on Chervochkin, "despite very intensive efforts" by investigators, Yelena Zhukova, a spokeswoman for the Moscow region branch of the Investigative Committee, said Friday.

The opposition coalition The Other Russia has accused investigators of dragging their feet in the case.

Ploskonosova, meanwhile, had been facing charges of assaulting a police officer in Tula before she fled the country -- allegations she said were trumped up.

~ more... ~


Protesters sue for right to march on RNC

Local antiwar groups filed suit in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis Monday seeking an injunction to order the city of St. Paul to grant a route for a demonstration on Sept. 1, the first day of the Republican National Convention.

Accusing city officials of violating protesters' free speech, the suit says those officials frustrated their efforts to get a march route from the State Capitol to Xcel Energy Center and back to the Capitol.

Named in the suit are Mayor Chris Coleman, St. Paul Police Chief John Harrington and his assistant chief, Matt Bostrom, who is in charge of security for the convention.


~ read on... ~


Flagellation opium

In this country, you take the trouble to hear mass, confess your sins, and partake of the sacraments, and you are free to rape and pillage, rob and murder the rest of the year. Hell, you are even free to insist God in his infinite wisdom, or perversion, "put me here."


~ full opinion piece ~


Operation Gladio: Perceiving the Evil in the Beast

Gladio (Italian, from Latin gladius, meaning sword) is a code name denoting the clandestine NATO "stay-behind" operation in Italy after World War II, intended to counter an eventual Warsaw Pact invasion of Western Europe. Although Gladio specifically refers to the Italian branch of the NATO stay-behind organisations, Operation Gladio is used as an informal name for all stay-behind organisations. Operating in all of NATO and even in some neutral countries or in Spain before its 1982 adhesion to NATO, Gladio was first coordinated by the Clandestine Committee of the Western Union (CCWU), founded in 1948. After the creation of NATO in 1949, the CCWU was integrated into the Clandestine Planning Committee (CPC), founded in 1951 and overseen by the SHAPE (Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe), transferred to Belgium after France’s official withdrawal from NATO in 1966 — which was not followed by the dissolution of the French stay-behind paramilitary movements. According to historian Daniele Ganser, one of the major researchers on the field, "Next to the CPC, a second secret army command center, labeled the Allied Clandestine Committee (ACC), was set up in 1957 on the orders of NATO's Supreme Allied Commander in Europe (SACEUR). This military structure provided for significant US leverage over the secret stay-behind networks in Western Europe as the SACEUR, throughout NATO's history, has traditionally been a US General who reports to the Pentagon in Washington and is based in NATO's Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) in Mons, Belgium. The ACC's duties included elaborating on the directives of the network, developing its clandestine capability, and organizing bases in Britain and the United States. In wartime, it was to plan stay-behind operations in conjunction with SHAPE. According to former CIA director William Colby, it was 'a major program'."
The role of the CIA in sponsoring Gladio and the extent of its activities during the Cold War era, and its relationship to attacks perpetrated in Italy during the years of lead and other similar clandestine operations is the subject of ongoing debate and investigation. Italy, Switzerland and Belgium have had parliamentary inquiries into the matter. The US State Department has denied involvement in terrorism and stated that some of the allegations and researchers, such as Ganser, have been influenced by what it and others describe as a Soviet forgery, US Army Field Manual 30-31B.
One of the first duties the NSC deemed necessary was the subversion of Italian democracy...in the name of democracy, of course. Italy seemed likely to elect a leftist government in the 1948 election. To make sure Italians voted instead for the candidates Washington favored-leftover brownshirt thugs from Mussolini's party and other Nazi collaborators-millions of dollars were spent on propaganda and payoffs. It was also intimated that food aid would be cut off if the election results were inconsistent with US desires.
The US got its way in 1948 without having to resort to violence but-as was discovered in 1990- the CIA had organized a secret paramilitary army in postwar Italy, with hidden stockpiles of weapons and explosives dotting the map. Called Operation Gladio (gladius is Latin for sword), the ostensible excuse for it was laughable-the threat of a Soviet invasion. But the real purpose wasn't so funny-Operation Gladio's 15,000 troops were trained to overthrow the Italian government should it stray from the straight and narrow.
Similar secret armies were formed in France, Belgium, the Netherlands and West Germany- often directed, quite naturally, by former SS officers. They didn't just wait around for the Russians to come marching in; they assembled huge arms caches (many of which remain unaccounted for), compiled blacklists of leftists and, in France, participated in plots to assassinate President DeGaulle.
Many members of Operation Gladio were also in a shadowy organization known as P-2; it too was financed by the CIA. P-2 had connections with the Vatican and the Mafia, and eventually with an international fascist umbrella organization called the World Anti-Communist League.
One of P-2's specialties was the art of provocation. Leftist organizations like the Red Brigades were infiltrated, financed and / or created, and the resulting acts of terrorism, like the assassination of Italy's premier in 1978 and the bombing of the railway station in Bologna in 1980, were blamed on the left. The goal of this "strategy of tension" was to convince Italian voters that the left was violent and dangerous-by helping make it so.

From Operation Gladio

When on the morning of 17 June 1982, the body of Roberto Calvi was found hanging beneath London's Blackfriars bridge, it was to speed a process that prised open a series of events spanning four decades. The circumstances of Calvi's death led knowledgeable observers to darkly whisper of a Masonic ritual slaying. With his hands tied behind his back and a brick thrust into his coat pocket, Calvi had been strangled, apparently by the rope that had been noosed around his neck. Moreover, the location itself was believed to be symbolic. Blackfriars bridge sits astride the border that connects the Masonically named "Square Mile" of the City of London to the rest of the Capital city.
The initial inquest into his death returned a verdict of suicide. Appealing against what they believed to be prejudice on the part of the Coroner - and suspicious of the Masonic affiliations of the City police - Calvi's family called for a second, more thorough inquest, which belatedly returned an open verdict. Meanwhile, Banco Ambrosiano, Calvi's massive, privately-owned bank, collapsed on the news of his death, revealing a huge "black hole" in the balance sheet amounting to $1.3 billion. A large proportion of the missing money was later located in accounts owned by the Vatican bank. The connections that unfolded in the wake of the Calvi "affair" were to link Masons with Mafiosi, Monks with Murder and Spies with wanted Nazi war criminals.
World War Two had barely ground to a final halt when, in 1947, Allied strategists set about planning for World War Three. Even as British and US intelligence officials scoured Europe seeking to apprehend Nazi's wanted on war crimes charges, other more secretive US and British intelligence units were actively engaged in helping those same Nazi's to escape.
The means of escape were the Vatican run "Ratlines." Operated with the knowledge and blessing of highly placed US and British government officials, the Ratlines guided 30,000 wanted Nazi's to sanctuary. Safe haven locations included the US, Britain, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the favourite bolt hole of them all: South America.
[ ... ]
Secretly granted immunity these and thousands of other battle hardened Nazi soldiers were to form the fighting nucleus of a top secret Allied contingency group conceived by the first Director of the CIA, Allen Dulles. Loosely known as operation "Stay Behind," the idea was to build a Europe wide secret network of anti communist guerrillas who would fight behind the lines in the event of a Soviet invasion. The plan was later codified under the umbrella of the Clandestine Co-ordinating Committee of the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE), the military arm of NATO.
US planners worried over the growing influence of Italy's large and popular communist party, established Operation "Gladio" in 1956. The name derived from the short sword used by Roman legionnaires 2000 years earlier, and was almost certainly drawn from the crest of SHAPE which features two swords arranged in an "A" shape. The Gladio network was operated by the secret services and initially funded by the US Central Intelligence Agency. 622 people were recruited and trained by US and British specialists in Sardinia. It is believed that up to 15,000 members were ultimately recruited to the Gladio network.
By 1972, with the prospect of a Soviet invasion receding, a decision was taken to "make a pre-emptive attack" on the Italian communist party - who had polled 27% in that year's election - and who would go on to increase their vote to 35% just four years later. There immediately followed a series of bomb outrages signalling the beginning of a "strategy of tension," designed to shift Italian politics sharply to the right. In April 1972 a Fascist bomb attack killed three carabinieri. In November 1973, an Argo 16 aircraft was destroyed in a mid-air explosion.
But if the Gladio network was the armed force, the secret Masonic lodge "Propaganda Due" (P2) was the Elitist "shadow government" tasked with directing them. Adhering to a right wing ideology bordering on fascism, P2 was headed by Licio Gelli - known as the "Puppet-master." During the war Gelli had been a member of Mussolini's notorious "Black shirts," and later acted as liaison officer to the Hermann Goering SS division. By 1974 P2 had in excess of 1000 members comprising a "who's who" of Italian political, military and economic power. Members included four Cabinet ministers, three intelligence chiefs, 160 senior military officers, 48 MPs, the Army Chief of Staff, as well as top diplomats, bankers, industrialists and media publishers.
It was also during 1974 that Gelli met secretly with Alexander Haig. Formerly, the NATO Supreme Commander, Haig had meanwhile become President Nixon's White House Chief of Staff. The secret meeting was held in the US Embassy in Rome. Receiving the blessing of Henry Kissinger, the US National Security Adviser, Gelli left the meeting with a promise of continued financial support for the Gladio network and it's plan for the "internal subversion." of Italian political life. As welcome as this was, Gelli required additional funds to support P2 and operation Gladio.
He turned to P2 member Roberto Calvi, Chairman of Banco Ambrosiano - the largest non-state owned bank in Italy. Calvi began to illegally siphon money from his bank, using the Vatican bank - the Istituto per de Religione (IOR) to launder it. Almost certainly, Gelli had a hold over Calvi. Earlier, in 1967, the former head of the Italian Secret Service had joined P2 and brought with him 150,000 sensitive dossiers that had been compiled on highly placed individuals of Italian society.
Whether as a result of blackmail or political ideology, Calvi continued to funnel a vast amount of funds to Gelli and P2, bankrupting his bank in the process. Meanwhile, other events were to occur that shocked not only Italy but the entire world. In early 1978, Prime Minister Aldo Moro was kidnapped and later assassinated by the so called "Red brigades" - a revolutionary pro Soviet group. Evidence now exists that shows Moro's murder was orchestrated by P2, and that both the "Red" and "Black" brigades were heavily penetrated by US intelligence - who are credited with "running" them.
Four years earlier, in 1974, Moro - then Foreign Minister - visited the US. Aware of the popular, democratic support the Italian Communist Party (PCI) was receiving from Italian voters, Moro wished to reach an accommodation with the PCI, and offer their leaders Cabinet rank in a new centrist ruling party. His Washington visit did not go well. During a meeting with then Secretary of State, Henry Kissinger, Moro was told that such a move was viewed in the US as "profoundly dangerous and mistaken." A later meeting with an unnamed intelligence official left Moro fearful for his life. The official told Moro he must abandon any idea to incorporate the communists ".or you will pay dearly for it." The official continued by warning Moro that "groups on the fringes of the official secret services might be brought into operation" if he didn't modify his position. It was a clear reference to P2 and the Gladio network. Moro cut short his visit and returned home in fear of his life, his wife later revealed.
Within months of Moro's assassination, the world awoke to hear the glad news that Albino Luciani had been elected Pope, taking the title Pope John Paul I. Revered as an honest, gentle and insightful man, Luciani's election caused anguish in many areas of the Vatican curia. Not least, Bishop Paul Marcinkus, the American head of the Vatican bank, felt his days were numbered. Marcinkus' removal from office would open a hornet's nest of financial sleaze. Via the Vatican bank, Marcinkus had engaged in a vast amount of financial skulduggery. In addition to his financial shenanigans with Banco Ambrosiano, the IOR was also using known Mafia figures to invest some of its vast wealth. Not least, Luciani was viewed by some on the far right of Italian politics to be soft on communism; his father being a committed Socialist and having once stood for political office.
Taken as a whole it was more than enough. Thirty three days after his election, the "Smiling Pope," as he was popularly known, was found dead. Replaced by Karol Wojtyla, who took the title of John Paul II, Bishop Marcinkus was not only reprieved but became a close confidant of the new Polish pope. Under the new, safer regime, Marcinkus went on to provide large sums to the Polish ship-workers union, Solidarity - which is largely credited with bringing an end to communism in Poland. Clearly, staunch anti communism was to be a continuing feature of Vatican life, as it had been under Luciani's predecessor, Pope Paul VI - who as the young Monsignor Giovanni Montini, the Under Secretary of State since 1937 - was heavily involved in the post war Ratlines.
In an additional "twist" it was revealed in 1992, by Mafia defector Francesco Mannino Mannoia, that Roberto Calvi had been strangled by Francesco Di Carlo, the Mafia's London based Heroin traffic manager. The order for the murder came from Pippo Calo, the Mafia treasurer and ambassador to Rome. Desperate to plug an increasingly large hole in his banks books, Calvi had agreed to launder large quantities of drugs money for the Corleone Mafia empire. Instead of laundering Mafia money, Calvi began skimming the profits to keep his bank afloat.
Faced with certain discovery and even more certain consequences, Calvi rushed to London to negotiate a loan from Opus Dei - a highly secretive and fabulously wealthy Catholic faction described by one authority as "sinister, secretive and Orwellian." A highly credible and knowledgeable source told this writer that Calvi met with the Treasurer of Opus Dei who had agreed to purchase a minority stake in Calvi's Banco Ambrosiano. The deal, had it proceeded would have provided the essential funds needed to repay the Mafia, and stave-off an imminent investigation into his affairs by Italy's Central bank.

From Information Liberation

"One of the most secret programs that ever existed"
"Deception is a state of mind and the mind of the State" - James Jesus Angleton, Head of CIA Counter Intelligence 1954-1974
Originally aired on BBC2 in 1992, 'Operation Gladio' reveals 'Gladio', the secret state-sponsored terror network operating in Europe.
This BBC series is about a far-right secret army, operated by the CIA and MI6 through NATO, which killed hundreds of innocent Europeans and attempted to blame the deaths on Baader Meinhof, Red Brigades and other left wing groups. Known as 'stay-behinds' these armies were given access to military equipment which was supposed to be used for sabotage after a Soviet invasion. Instead it was used in massacres across mainland Europe as part of a CIA Strategy of Tension. Gladio killing sprees in Belgium and Italy were carried out for the purpose of frightening the national political classes into adopting U.S. policies.

From Sword Play: Attacking Civilians to Justify "Greater Security"

 'You had to attack civilians, the people, women, children, innocent people, unknown people far removed from any political game. The reason was quite simple: to force ... the public to turn to the state to ask for greater security."
This was the essence of Operation Gladio, a decades-long covert campaign of terrorism and deceit directed by the intelligence services of the West -- against their own populations. Hundreds of innocent people were killed or maimed in terrorist attacks -- on train stations, supermarkets, cafes and offices -- which were then blamed on "leftist subversives" or other political opponents. The purpose, as stated above in sworn testimony by Gladio agent Vincenzo Vinciguerra, was to demonize designated enemies and frighten the public into supporting ever-increasing powers for government leaders -- and their elitist cronies.
First revealed by Italian Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti in 1991, Gladio (from the Latin for "sword") is still protected to this day by its founding patrons, the CIA and MI6. Yet parliamentary investigations in Italy, Switzerland and Belgium have shaken out a few fragments of the truth over the years. These have been gathered in a new book, "NATO's Secret Armies: Operation Gladio and Terrorism in Western Europe," by Daniele Ganser, as Lila Rajiva reports on CommonDreams.org.
Originally set up as a network of clandestine cells to be activated behind the lines in the event of a Soviet invasion of Western Europe, Gladio quickly expanded into a tool for political repression and manipulation, directed by NATO and Washington. Using right-wing militias, underworld figures, government provocateurs and secret military units, Gladio not only carried out widespread terrorism, assassinations and electoral subversion in democratic states such as Italy, France and West Germany, but also bolstered fascist tyrannies in Spain and Portugal, abetted the military coup in Greece and aided Turkey's repression of the Kurds.
Among the "smoking guns" unearthed by Ganser is a Pentagon document, Field Manual FM 30-31B, which details the methodology for launching terrorist attacks in nations that "do not react with sufficient effectiveness" against "communist subversion." Ironically, the manual states that the most dangerous moment comes when leftist groups "renounce the use of force" and embrace the democratic process. It is then that "U.S. army intelligence must have the means of launching special operations which will convince Host Country Governments and public opinion of the reality of the insurgent danger." Naturally, these peace-throttling "special operations must remain strictly secret," the document warns.
Indeed, it would not do for the families of the 85 people ripped apart by the Aug. 2, 1980 bombing of the Bologna train station to know that their loved ones had been murdered by "men inside Italian state institutions and ... men linked to the structures of United States intelligence," as the Italian Senate concluded after its investigation in 2000.
The Bologna atrocity is an example of what Gladio's masters called "the strategy of tension" -- fomenting fear to keep populations in thrall to "strong leaders" who will protect the nation from the ever-present terrorist threat. And as Rajiva notes, this strategy wasn't limited to Western Europe. It was applied, with gruesome effectiveness, in Central America by the Reagan and Bush administrations. During the 1980s, right-wing death squads, guerrilla armies and state security forces -- armed, trained and supplied by the United States -- murdered tens of thousands of people throughout the region, often acting with particular savagery at those times when peaceful solutions to the conflicts seemed about to take hold.
Last month, it was widely reported that the Pentagon is considering a similar program in Iraq. What was not reported, however -- except in the Iraqi press -- is that at least one pro-occupation death squad is already in operation. Just days after the Pentagon plans were revealed, a new militant group, "Saraya Iraqna," began offering big wads of American cash for insurgent scalps -- up to $50,000, the Iraqi paper Al Ittihad reports. "Our activity will not be selective," the group promised. In other words, anyone they consider an enemy of the state will be fair game.
Strangely enough, just as it appears that the Pentagon is establishing Gladio-style operations in Iraq, there has been a sudden rash of terrorist attacks on outrageously provocative civilian targets, such as hospitals and schools, the Guardian reports.

From Secret Warfare: Operation Gladio and NATO's Stay-Behind Armies

According to the SIFAR document [http://www.isn.ethz.ch/php/documents/collection_gladio/report_gladio.pdf] of 1959 the secret stay-behind armies served a dual purpose during the Cold War: They were to prepare for a communist Soviet invasion and occupation of Western Europe, and – also in the absence of an invasion – for an “emergency situation”. The first purpose was clear: If there had been a Soviet invasion, the secret anti-communist armies would have operated behind enemy lines, strengthening and setting up local resistance movements in enemy held territory, evacuating pilots who had been shot down, and sabotaging supply lines and production centers of the occupation forces.
The second purpose, the preparation for an emergency situation, is more difficult to understand and remains the subject of ongoing research. As this second purpose clearly did not relate to a foreign invasion, the emergency situation referred to is likely to have meant all domestic threats, most of which were of a civilian nature. During the Cold War, the national military secret services in the countries of Western Europe differed greatly in what they perceived to be an emergency situation. But there was agreement between the military secret services of the United States and of Western Europe that communist parties, and to some degree also socialist parties, had a real potential to weaken NATO from within and therefore represented a threat to the alliance. If they gained political strength and entered the executive, or, worse still, gained control of defence ministries, an emergency situation would result. The evidence now available suggests that in some countries the secret stay-behind armies linked up with right-wing terrorists and carried out terror attacks that were later wrongly blamed on the political left in order to discredit the communists and prevent them from assuming top executive positions.
Evidence suggests that recruitment and operations methods differed greatly from country to country. The research project into NATO’s secret armies that is being undertaken by the Center for Security Studies [http://www.css.ethz.ch/] at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Zurich, and is headed by Daniele Ganser, has collected and published the available country-specific evidence in the first English-language book on the topic, entitled NATO's Secret Armies: Operation Gladio and Terrorism in Western Europe (London: Frank Cass, 2005). In a second step, the project is working on gaining access to declassified primary documents, while encouraging discussion among NATO officials, secret services and military officials, and the international research community in order to clarify the strategy, training, and operations of the stay-behind armies.
The NATO Response
The NATO response to the discovery of the secret stay-behind armies has been defensive and at times inconsistent. When evidence of the NATO stay-behind army Gladio in Italy emerged in August 1990, NATO headquarters in Brussels initially refused to comment. About three months later, however, NATO bowed to media pressure and made a statement. However, in that statement the military alliance categorically rejected former Italian Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti's allegation about NATO's involvement in operation Gladio and the secret armies. Specifically, Senior NATO Spokesman Jean Marcotta on Monday, 5 November 1990 at SHAPE headquarters in Mons, Belgium, said: "NATO has never contemplated guerrilla war or clandestine operations; it has always concerned itself with military affairs and the defence of Allied frontiers."
Eventually, on Tuesday, 6 November, a NATO spokesman explained that NATO's statement of the previous day had been false. On 6 November, the spokesman left journalists with a short communiqué that said that NATO never commented on matters of military secrecy and that Marcotta should not have said anything at all. The international press protested against NATO’s defensive public relations policy. For example, British daily newspaper The Observer said: "As shock followed shock across the Continent, a NATO spokesman issued a denial: nothing was known of Gladio or stay-behind. Then a seven word communiqué announced the denial was 'incorrect' and nothing more."
1956  British involvement in formation of Italian Gladio
"Andreotti ... has admitted to parliament that a covert intelligence
service was set-up forty years ago, with the help of the CIA and British
agents to combat Soviet subversion or aggression." (Wolfgang Achtner,
Sunday Independent, 11/11/90)
"General sir Anthony Farrar-Hockley, a former commander-in-chief of Nato
forces in northern Europe said...that a covert intelligence service was set
up in Italy with the help of British agents and the CIA - which also partly
funded it.  The Italian branch of the network was known as Operation
Gladio" (Richard Norton Taylor, Guardian, 15/11/90)

1970s  British visit to German Training Camp
"Documents shown to the [Italian Committee on Terrorism revealed that in
the 1970s British and French officials involved in the network visited a
training base in Germany built with US money."
(Richard Norton-Taylor, Guardian, 17/11/90)
cl973 Gladio unit visit Britain
"Britain hosted a unit responsible for organising Operation
Gladio...General Gerardo Serraville, who said the Italians trained at a
military base in Britain, was giving evidence in Rome to a parliamentary
inquiry." (see 1990). (Richard Norton-Taylor & David Gow, Guardian,
1974 British "Gladio" visit to Italy
Gladio "counterparts in Britain, where the plan was given the name
Operation Stay Behind, visited Italy in 1974, according to a senior Italian
intelligence official." (Richard norton-Taylor & David Gow, Guardian,
16/11/90  Tom King denial
"The Defence secretary, Tom King, said yesterday that he had never heard
of Gladio. "I'm not sure what particular hot potato you're chasing after.
It sounds wonderfully exciting, but I'm afraid I'm quite ignorant about it.
I'm better informed on the
Gulf," Mr King said."
(Richard Norton-Taylor, Guardian, 17/11/90
[ ... ]
AUSTRIA (Schwert)
"The network...  in Austria is called "Schwert" (sword)"
(Richard Norton-Taylor, Guardian, 16/11/90)
[ ... ]
"A news programme, produced by Stern magazine and to be aired Wednesday
night on the private RTL television network said there was a secret anti-
communist organisation in Germany that included former Nazis. The group had
a "death list" that targeted several prominent leftist politicians in the
event of a war with the Soviet Union, according to a summary...in advance
of the broadcast." (MS Beelman, Associated Press, 14/11/90)
"On Tuesday AFP quoted informed sources in Bonn as confirming that the
organisation existed in Germany but the former chancellor, Mr Willy Brandt,
denied any knowledge of the existence of the group.  The German government
yesterday confirmed plans for covert action in the event of an invasion but
denied there were military units involved. A government spokesman said the
government knew of plans by US intelligence agencies to recruit a network
of guerrillas throughout Europe and to prepare arms caches.  The plans had
been developed with the knowledge of the West German secret service
director, he said." (Paddy Agnew, Irish Times, 15/11/90)
"Yesterday, the German government admitted the network operated there.
"Precautions have been taken in West Germany, as in other Nato states,
since the 1950s to secure the flow of intelligence information in the
probable area of conflict [after a Soviet attack]," a german spokesman,
Hans Klein, said." (Richard Norton-Taylor, Guardian, 15/11/90)
"The German government is to disband its part of Gladio, the secret
resistance network, Bonn officials said yesterday.  According to a German
television report, the section consisted of former SS and Waffen-SS
officers as well as members of an extreme rightwing group, the Federation
of German Youth, and drew up plans to assassinate leading figures of the
opposition Social Democratic Party in the event of a Soviet-led invasion."
(Richard Norton Taylor & David Gow, Guardian, 17/11/90)
"Documents shown to the [Italian Committee on Terrorism] revealed that in
the 1970s British and French officials involved in the network visited a
training base in Germany built with US money."
(Richard Norton-Taylor, Guardian, 17/11/90)
GREECE (Operation Sheepskin)
"In Greece, defence minister, Yannis Varvitsiotis, has said local commandos
and the CIA set up a branch of the network in 1955 to organise guerrilla
resistance to any communist invader.  Known as Operation Sheepskin, it was
dismantled in 1988." (John Palmer, Guardian, 10/11/90)
"The Greek operation started in 1955 but the Socialist government that came
to power in 1981 began to dismantle it in 1985. All arms caches were dug
up and stored at a military base near Athens by 1988 when the network was
finally dismantled, officials and newspaper reports have said. (Associated
Press, 14/11/90)
"Andreas Papandreou, Greece's former Socialist prime minister, said his
government had disbanded the Greek network, which he described as a
"para-state" organisation.  Known as "Red Sheepskin", it was formed in 1955
as a secret part of the agreement to set up US military bases in Greece."
(Independent, 16/11/90)
"The Athens government yesterday ordered an inquiry into a secret deal-
between the Greek military forces and the CIA, aimed at setting-up an
anti-communist guerrilla network as part of the covert operation disclosed
last month in Italy under the code name Gladio." (Richard Norton-Taylor,
Guardian, 20/11/90)
"In Greece, where it was given the code-name, Sheepskin, a cell was set up
by the CIA in the 1950s but was dismantled in 1988, according to the
government.  Officers in the underground unit were involved in the
Colonel's coup in 1967. (Richard Norton-Taylor, Guardian, 5/12/90)
[ ... ]
A paramilitary committee of former high-ranking service officers has, for
the past six years, been receiving official government support to set up
an undercover, anti-communist resistance movement in Britain (Daily Express
18/7/77). The Resistance and Psychological Operations Committee (RPOC) is
a covert group within the government-funded Reserve Forces Association
(RFA). The RFA is the representative body of British military reservists,
and the British component of the NATO-supported Confederation Inter-Allies
des Officers de Reserve (CIOR). The RFA-was formed in 1970 and is formally
an independent organisation, but its 214 individual and 90 corporate
members represent all the reserve units of the armed forces and the
government treats it as the spokesman of Britain's reserve forces.
     Since 1971 the RPOC has been setting up the nucleus of an underground
resistance organisation which could rapidly be expanded in the event of a
Russian occupation of any part of NATO, including Britain.  Close links
have been formed with similar units in several European countries, which
are actively recruiting 'anti-communist resistance fighters', according to
Chapman Pincher.  They are also said to have established an intelligence
network which NATO chiefs regard as being of great value.
     The RPOC was set up by a group of World War Two defence chiefs who
thought that the need has arisen again for an organisation like the
underground wartime Special Operations Executive (SOE), but this time
directed against communism. Amongst the group were: General Sir Richard
Gale, former NATO Deputy Supreme Allied Commander, Europe, and founder of
the 1st Parachute Brigade; Sir Collin Gubbins, founder of the SOE and the
Commandos; Sir John Slessor; Marshal of the Royal Air Force, and former
Chief of the Air Staff; and Sir Algernon Willis, Admiral of the Fleet.
     Under the then Tory government RPOC was given access to Ministry of
Defence Departments, including the Joint Warfare Establishment near
Salisbury commanded by Maj.  Gen.  Patrick Ovens,
a former Commando.  The committee also formed close links with the Special
Air Services (SAS), and secured access to the Foreign Office's Information
and Research Department, which has historically been used as a cover
Department for M16 agents.  The MOD gave the RFA a grant to pass on to
RPOC.  Now, Pincher claims, the Labour government are worried that their
supporters will find out that the government has been encouraging a
rightwing paramilitary group, and they have therefore been quietly trying
to stifle the committee over the past months.  RPOC has been deprived of
its grant (and thereby its official status), access to Whitehall
information has ended, and attendance at NATO meetings forbidden.  The
committee still exists, however, with General Gale leading the right for
its survival.
The Bologna station massacre is believed to have been the joint work of neofascists, members of the secret services and the subversive right-wing Propaganda-Due Masonic lodge, which was outlawed in 1982, according to the reports.
Italians marched Thursday in Bologna, a city in north-central Italy, to commemorate the victims of the 1980 bombing in its train station which left 85 people dead and some 200 injured, local media reported.
Relatives of the victims took part in the march from the central Piazza Nettuno to the station where Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi made an unannounced appearance.
Prodi, who is a native of Bologna, said in a brief speech that the massacre was carried out by terrorists “who tried to destroy democracy in this nation and who were defeated on moral, cultural and political levels.”
In a message to Bologna Mayor Sergio Cofferati, House Speaker Fausto Bertinotti stressed the need to uncover the full truth behind the station bombing because “a nation which cannot look back at its past with a full understanding cannot plan for its future,” said the reports.
The Bologna station massacre is believed to have been the joint work of neofascists, members of the secret services and the subversive right-wing Propaganda-Due Masonic lodge, which was outlawed in 1982, according to the reports.
There’s a reason anarchists are sometimes associated with violence, and it has little or nothing to do with the black bloc.
Throwing a trash can through a Starbucks window may be illegal, but it is not violent. Property damage may be viewed by the public with more horror and outrage than acts of violence (at least those of the state) but we should not conflate the destruction of inanimate objects with the destruction of living flesh. Even if we disagree on tactics.
That’s what the press is for.
No, the “bomb-thrower” caricature has its roots elsewhere, specifically in the decades before WWI.
Following the death of Bakunin and sparked by the writings of Erico Malatesta, the anarchist movement took to a strategy called “propaganda of the deed”. The idea, as demonstrated by Malatesta, was direct action: “the Italian federation believes that the insurrectional act, destined to affirm socialist principles by deed, is the most efficacious means of propaganda”.
“The following year [1877] Malatesta and other anarchists put their theory into practice. As part of an armed militia they entered two villages in Campania, Italy. Declaring an end to the reign of King Emmanuel, they burned the parish records and distributed the funds in the tax collectors’ safe to the poor. Troops soon arrived and the insurgents were captured. Although the exercise failed, the example was not missed by other anarchist revolutionaries.”
Malatesta was an eloquent writer and hero to literally millions of people during his lifetime, but the sort of “direct action” he was advocating had nothing on common with what followed. Malatesta wrote:
“We do not believe in the right to punish; we reject the idea of revenge as a barbarous sentiment. We have no intention of being either executioners or avengers. It seems to us that the role of liberators and peacemakers is more noble and positive”.
[ ... ]
“Staying Behind”
“As the 50th anniversary of the end of the war is celebrated,
some unpleasant truths will become further buried beneath the
myth of the “triumph of freedom and democracy” over fascism. For
if fascism itself was the great evil that had to be stopped at
any cost, how are we to explain the total failure of the British,
French and American governments to do anything about the war in
Spain from 1936 to 1939, when Franco’s fascist forces, openly
supported with arms and troops by Hitler and Mussolini, destroyed
the “democratically elected” republican government? The answer is
not hard to find. For Western capitalism the real enemy was not
fascism but the popular revolution inaugurated by the Spanish
working class.”
“…In fact the Greek based “Operation Sheepskin” mentioned in
relation to the 1967 coup was but one part of a European wide
“Stay Behind” network, established by the British and Americans.
Ostensibly this network existed to provide the nucleus of a
guerilla army to fight on after any Soviet invasion, using arms
and explosives which had already been planted. However, the
evidence leaves little doubt that this network also had the
intention of resisting “internal subversion”.
“The Stay Behind network was conceived by the US Joint Chiefs
of Staff and put into operation in 1948 by the National Security
Council which set up the Office of Policy Co-ordination to run
it, staffed and funded by the CIA. Ultimately, coordination of
the network took place under the auspices of NATO. It involved
personnel from the “official” security services in each country
and received covert funding from industry and the state. Indeed
funding and support of such groups was one of the main tasks of
the newly-formed CIA. However, members of the network were mainly
recruited from the civilian population, notably “ex-fascists” and
others whose “anti-communist” credentials were unimpeachable.”
“The existence of the Stay Behind network was not a matter
for public knowledge. However, the activities of the Italian
branch – codenamed Operation Gladio – was exposed in a series of
judicial investigations, particularly between 1990 and 1992.”
“Operation Gladio was set up in 1958 with help from British
Intelligence and the CIA, with funding from the latter. This
assistance continued, with Gladio units being trained in Britain
in the early 1970s and by US instructors at a military base in
the Canary Islands from 1966 to the mid-70s. Gladio was
controlled by the Italian secret services from “Office R”. It had
strong links with P2, a fascist Masonic Lodge composed of most of
the top military officers, political leaders, industrialists,
bankers and diplomats in Italy. P2 has been described as
effectively constituting a right wing parallel government in
Italy. In addition, Gladio became a focal point for fascist
members of “Marine Star” a veteran’s group set up after the
Second World War, and was to make use of other fascist groups in
the 70s and 80s.”
“In fact Gladio was deeply involved in the so-called
“strategy of tension” in the late 60s and 70s. The aim of the
strategy, of which the principle tactic was “terrorist outrages”
carried out by fascists, was to spread panic and unrest and to
directly attack the Left and provoke them into an armed response,
which would both justify increased state power under the pretext
of a “national emergency” and isolate the Left from popular
support. General Gerardo Serravalle, head of “Office R” from
1971-1974, revealed that at a Gladio meeting in 1972 at least
half of the upper echelons “had the idea of attacking the
communists before an invasion. They were preparing for civil
A Strategy of Tension
“Gelli’s P2 and elements within the Vatican (such as Father Krujoslav Dragonovic, a Croatian Catholic priest — one of many who had helped the CIA export Nazi war criminals out of Germany through its Rat Lines), working in conjunction with the CIA, aligned itself with criminals, corrupt police, and high government officials to discredit the emerging Left and stage a fascist coup. “The Vatican’s fear was clear: Communism posed a threat to its religious, political, and economic strength.”
“God’s Bankers”
“On behalf of democracy, the Mafia enlisted as their agent Salvatore Giuliano. He and his cousin Gaspere Pisciotta led their men into Portella della Ginestra. Without prejudice, they shot and killed a dozen people and wounded more than fifty others. New elections were held, and the Christian Democratic party won a resounding victory. Later, at the orders of the Mafia, Pisciotta murdered Salvatore Giuliano. At his trial, Gaspere Pisciotta said of the massacre, “We were a single body: bandits, police, and Mafia, like the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.”
“The covert objectives of Gladio were to spread panic and unrest through the implementation of “terrorist outrages,” and also to directly attack the Left in an attempt to provoke them into an armed response. The purpose of this strategy was to demonize the Left and isolate them from popular support, while providing an excuse to curtain civil liberties. As a 1969 memo from Aginter Press, a fascist front group, explained:
“Our belief is that the first phase of political activity ought to be to create the conditions favouring the installation of chaos in all of the regime’s structures. This should necessarily begin with the undermining of the state economy so as to arrive at confusion throughout the whole legal apparatus. This leads on to a situation of strong political tension, fear in the world of industry and hostility towards the government and the political parties.… In our view the first move we should make is to destroy the structure of the democratic state, under the cover of communist and pro-Chinese activities.”
“Moreover, we have people who have infiltrated these groups and obviously we will have to tailor our actions to the ethos of the milieu — propaganda and action of a sort which will seem to have emanated from our communist adversaries and pressure brought to bear on people in whom power is invested at every level. That will create a feeling of hostility towards those who threaten the people of each and every nation, and at the same time we must raise up a defender of the citizenry against the disintegration brought about by terrorism and subversion.…”
As the 1969 dispatch added:
“The introduction of provocateur elements into the circles of the revolutionary left is merely a reflection of the wish to push this unstable situation to breaking point and create a climate of chaos…”
from Dario Fo’s Accidental Death of an Anarchist
“One early Gladio-precipitated incident was the December, 12, 1969 bombing of the Banca Nazionale del’ Agricultura in Milan’s Piazza Fontana. The attack killed 16 people and wounded 88. Police immediatly arrested and blamed anarchists. One anarchist leader, Giuseppe Pinelli, took the fall for the bombing, literally, when police tossed him out the window of the local precinct headquarters.”
Giuseppe Pinelli
“In addition to this, the Procurator General of the Republic, De Peppo, ordered the one unexploded bomb found in the wreckage to be detonated immediately. As in Oklahoma, the destruction of this evidence destroyed the single best chance at uncovering the true perpetrators of the deadly attack.”
“Nevertheless, police eventually discovered the real perpetrators — two fascists: Franco Freda and Giovanni Ventura. Ventura, it seems, was in close contact with Colonel Guido Giannettinni of the SID (part of the secret services), who was a fervent supporter of MSI. The trial of Ventura and Freda was delayed for 12 years, when they were finally given life sentences, only to be cleared on appeal.”
Franco Freda
Giovanni Ventura
Guido Giannettinni
“Former Gladio agents also attributed the 1969 Piazza Fontana bombing and the 1974 [and subsequent 1980] Bologna bombings, which resulted in over 113 deaths and 185 injured, to P2. These attacks include the Mafia’s involvement in the Red Brigade’s kidnap and murder of Italian Prime Minister Aldo Moro in 1978. The P2 organization was also suspected of the 1976 assassination of Italian magistrate Vittoria Occorsio. Occorsio was investigating P2 links to neo-Nazi organizations at the time. His death conveniently terminated any further investigation.
Aldo Moro
“This “strategy of tension,” organized around a brutal campaign of terror and murder, resulted in the deaths of hundreds of people during the decades of the 1970s and ’80s. The wave of terror led to the severe restriction of civil rights, with the 1975 law restricting popular campaigning and radical political discussion. Many people were locked up under “anti-terrorist” legislation (sound familiar?) or expelled from the country.”
“As the Left (the Red Brigades) resorted to armed struggle to defend themselves, it only strengthened Gladio/P2’s position. The Red Brigades, which had been systematically infiltrated by the secret services, were repeatedly blamed for the attacks, all the while unknowingly serving the agenda of the fascist P2 establishment.”
“One unforgetable example of this wave of terror was the Bologna railway bombing in 1980, that killed 80 people and injured over 160. While reportedly masterminded by P2 members Stefano Delle Chiaie and Licio Gelli, the attack was blamed on the Red Brigades to discredit the Italian Communist party. According to author Steve Mizrach:
Delle Chiaie
“Some Italian political analysts believe that P2 and “Ordine Nuova” (New Order) may have cooperated with the CIA [to bomb the railway station].… There are clearly overlapping circles of membership between P2, the CIA, and the Knights of Malta, a “sovereign military order descended from the Knights of St. John-Hospitallers,” and whose membership in the U.S. has included Bill Casey, Alexander Haig, and Prescott Bush [and reportedly George Bush].”
“As the fascists embarked on a wave of bombings and
shootings, civil rights in Italy began to be severely curtailed,
with a 1975 law restricting popular campaigning and radical
political discussion. Many people were locked up under “anti-
terrorist” legislation or expelled from the country. As expected,
the Left, in the shape of the Red Brigades, resorted to armed
struggle to defend themselves against this assault. This simply
strengthened Gladio / P2’s hand – the Red Brigades were blamed
for fascist outrages, systematically infiltrated by the secret
services and used to carry out actions which supported the hidden
“Gladio was “officially disbanded” by the Italian government
in December 1990 after the story broke. On January 29th, 1992 it
was officially declared to have been a clandestine and illegal
“armed band” involved in subversion, by an Italian parliamentary
commission on terrorism.”
“The 1990 revelations in Italy had a wider impact. After all,
Gladio was simply the Italian branch of a European wide network.
The Belgian, French, Dutch, Greek and German governments all
officially acknowledged that they took part in the covert NATO
network, with the Belgian prime minister revealing that a Europe
wide meeting of the network had been held as recently as October
1990. Of course the respective governments were at pains to deny
that the network had been intended for anything other than to
enable post-invasion guerilla warfare. Intervention in domestic
politics could only be the work of “uncontrollables” following
their own agenda.”
“This covertly-orchestrated “strategy of tension” would repeat itself in Belgium in the mid-80s, in a bizarre series of killings called the “Supermarket Massacres,” in which hooded gunmen walked into crowded supermarkets and began firing away. The massacres, orchestrated by a group calling itself the “Killers of Brabant,” were later discovered to be linked to Belgium’s Gladio unit.”
“The Supermarket massacres occurred during the period when the U.S. was pushing a plan to base the Euro-Missiles (nuclear-tipped Cruise missiles) in different European countries. The plan led to huge demonstrations in Europe, with certain countries threatening to break ranks with NATO. Belgium was one of those countries. The Belgian Parliament, which investigated the incidents, felt that they were another attempt to sow confusion and fear among the populace, thereby generating public outcries for a law-and-order government which would be amenable to the Euro-Missles.”
“Proof surfaced when a former gendarme, Madani Bouhouche, who worked for state security and was a member of a neo-Nazi paramilitary group Westland New Post (WNP), was arrested with one of the murder weapons. The next day, Bouhouche’s friend and fellow Right-wing militant Jean Bultot fled to Paraguay (a popular respite for Nazis). While in Paraguay, Bultot admitted to Belgian journalist René Haquin that the killings were a state security destabilization operation with government participation “at every level.”


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