Thursday, February 24, 2011

Saving Private Raymond -- by Bina Shah

Saving Private Raymond -- by Bina Shah

Raymond Davis must have spent one hell of a very lonely Valentine's
Day this year, banged up in a Lahore jail with only a foam pad on a
cotton mattress for company. Compare his plight to Mumtaz Qadri, who
was the lucky recipient of flowers, chocolates, and greeting cards
from his throngs of admirers, both male and female; Davis must have
felt like the one kid in third grade who doesn't get a Valentine from
anyone because nobody likes him (The Hallmark card signed: "With love
from your friends at the US Consulate, Lahore" doesn't count).

By now, everyone – even the New York Times, that bastion of
investigative reporting and journalistic objectivity – has cottoned on
to the fact that Raymond Davis is a CIA spy, arrested and jailed after
shooting two motorcyclists in Lahore who may or may not have been ISI
agents, petty thieves, Pizza Hut deliverymen, or recruiters for the
Pakistan Cricket Board. Similarly, Davis may or may not have been a
technical officer for the US Consulate in Lahore; a diplomat with the
US Embassy; a security contractor; a tour guide for American tourists
to Pakistan; or a Hollywood movie star. I can just imagine the
conversation going on between Davis's agent and the studio heads at
20th Century Fox: "No, Matt Damon will NOT play him in the movie
version. We're in talks with Mr. Bean instead."

The heavyweights of American foreign policy, namely Barack Obama,
Hillary Clinton, and John Kerry, have been begging the Pakistani
government to recognise that Davis, no matter what avatar he has
assumed, has diplomatic immunity under the Vienna Conventions, and
that he should be released to US authorities to be tried in America.
The Pakistani authorities are enjoying the discomfiture of the US
government, as well as the leverage that holding a top CIA spy brings
– the slave becomes the master, for once! Some circles in Islamabad
are discussing the possibility of holding an auction and selling Davis
off to the highest bidder in order to save Pakistan from its current
economic crisis. Apparently, certain elderly dictators, autocrats, and
monarchs in the Middle East are willing to pay top dollar for the
hapless American; they'll throw in a year's supply of oil in to
sweeten the deal.

(Then there's the scientific contingent, who feel that Davis should
just be cryogenically frozen and kept in a vault in one of our space
stations until Luke Skywalker can come and rescue him.)

As an expert in foreign policy and international relations*, I feel
that the US and Pakistan should both approach the situation with
caution and pragmatism. The United States should consider the fact
that it might be more politically expedient to sacrifice one really
crappy spy for the sake of US-Pakistan relations. After all, they were
flexible enough and allowed the US Consulate in Karachi to move its'
premises from opposite Frere Hall to the Mai Kolachi Road, freeing up
the five star hotels and private clubs to be enjoyed by Karachi's
elites. So why not show a little more flexibility and let Davis meet
his fate at the hands of Pakistan's excellent court system? The
best-case scenario is that the court will try Davis, find him guilty,
and have him declared persona non grata. Then the Foreign Office will
expel him, and send him back to live out the rest of his life in rural
West Virginia, which some Americans believe is a fate worse than being
lynched by a mob of baying extremists.

Pakistan, too, should show some intelligence in dealing with this
problem. After all, we are a signatory to the Vienna Convention, and
let us not forget that embarrassing little incident when a Pakistan
"diplomat" to Nepal was found to be hiding several hundred pounds of
explosives in his home, for recreational purposes only. Furious
orange-robed Buddhist monks didn't hold rallies on the streets of
Kathmandu, demanding that he be hanged from the nearest mountaintop.
Nepalese pundits didn't go on cable television networks, ranting about
Pakistani-Nepalese relations being irrevocably damaged by the
incident. The Nepalese government quietly asked Pakistan to waive his
immunity, and when Pakistan refused – a sensible decision, like all
those taken by the government – they expelled the man, who is now
enjoying his time as the Pakistani ambassador to Libya.

There's the interesting question of whether or not spies enjoy
diplomatic immunity, and the short but unsatisfactory answer is that
yes, they do. The sad reality of today's geopolitics means that all
countries, whether friends or foes, are overrun with spies who go
around gathering information, liaising with questionable
anti-government elements, and furthering the interests of their own
countries with secrecy and style and a diplomatic passport (more than
one, sometimes). And then there are spies like the ham-handed Raymond
Davis, who make a complete mess of their assignments, and end up
languishing in jails, their fates in utter limbo. Because, frankly,
nobody really knows what to do about any of the bigger mess, the one
that involves Afghanistan, Pakistan and the Taliban, and so they all
focus on one Raymond Davis, a man who never thought he'd be the
flash-point of a critical juncture between the world's sole superpower
and its schizophrenic buddy state; nor less the punchline of a
thousand bad jokes about James Bond and Jason Bourne.

But in the absence of any intelligent solution to this diplomatic
imbroglio, I propose one that makes the most sense to me: Forget
hanging Davis, they should just make him eat Pakistani jail food for a
week. If he survives that, they should let him go.

*Bina Shah is the author of Slum Child, and has no expertise in
politics or foreign policy whatsoever.

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posted by u2r2h at 1:58 AM 0 comments

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

US_agent Pakistan Terrosist Agent Provocateur CIA Raymond Davis

Finally, there is one newspaper that dares to publish it:

CIA agent Davis had ties with local militants'

By Qaiser Butt -- Published: February 22, 2011

Phone records of Davis show that he had ties with 33 Pakistanis,
including 27 from TTP and LeJ. PHOTO: FILE

ISLAMABAD: As American newspapers lifted a self-imposed gag on the CIA
links of Raymond Davis, in place on the request of the US
administration, The Express Tribune has now learnt that the alleged
killer of two Pakistanis had close links with the Tehreek-e-Taliban
Pakistan (TTP).

The New York Times reported on Monday that Davis "was part of a
covert, CIA-led team of operatives conducting surveillance on militant
groups deep inside the country, according to American government

This contradicts the US claim that Davis was a member of the
'technical and administrative staff' of its diplomatic mission in

Davis was arrested on January 27 after allegedly shooting dead two
young motorcyclists at a crowded bus stop in Lahore. American
officials say that the arrest came after a 'botched robbery attempt'.

"The Lahore killings were a blessing in disguise for our security
agencies who suspected that Davis was masterminding terrorist
activities in Lahore and other parts of Punjab," a senior official in
the Punjab police claimed.

"His close ties with the TTP were revealed during the investigations,"
he added. "Davis was instrumental in recruiting young people from
Punjab for the Taliban to fuel the bloody insurgency." Call records of
the cellphones recovered from Davis have established his links with 33
Pakistanis, including 27 militants from the TTP and Lashkar-e-Jhangvi
sectarian outfit, sources said.

Davis was also said to be working on a plan to give credence to the
American notion that Pakistan's nuclear weapons are not safe. For this
purpose, he was setting up a group of the Taliban which would do his

The larger picture

Davis's arrest and detention has pulled back the curtain on a web of
covert American operations inside Pakistan.

The former military ruler Pervez Musharraf had cut a secret deal with
the US in 2006, allowing clandestine CIA operations in his country.
This was done to make the Americans believe that Islamabad was not
secretly helping the Taliban insurgents.

Under the agreement, the CIA was allowed to acquire the services of
private security firms, including Blackwater (Xe Worldwide) and
DynCorp to conduct surveillance on the Taliban and al Qaeda.

According to The New York Times, even before his arrest, Davis's CIA
affiliation was known to Pakistani authorities. It added that his
visa, presented to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in late 2009,
describes his job as a "regional affairs officer," a common job
description for officials working with the agency.

American officials said that with Pakistan's government trying to
clamp down on the increasing flow of CIA officers and contractors
trying to gain entry to Pakistan, more of these operatives have been
granted "cover" as embassy employees and given diplomatic passports.

However, "The government and security agencies were surprised to know
that Davis and some of his colleagues were involved in activities that
were not spelled out in the agreement," a source told The Express

"Davis's job was to trail links of the Taliban and al Qaeda in
different parts of Pakistan. But, instead, investigators found that he
had developed close links with the TTP," added the source.

Investigators had recovered 158 items from Davis, which include a 9mm
Gloc Pistol, five 9mm magazines, 75 bullets, GPS device, an infrared
torch, a wireless set, two mobile phones, a digital camera, a survival
kit, five ATM cards, and Pakistani and US currency notes, sources

The camera had photographs of Pakistan's defence installations.

Intelligence officials say that some of the items recovered from Davis
are used by spies, not diplomats. This proves that he was involved in
activities detrimental to Pakistan's national interests.

The Punjab law minister has said that Davis could be tried for
anti-state activities. "The spying gadgets and sophisticated weapons
recovered are never used by diplomats," Rana Sanaullah told The
Express Tribune.

He said some of the items recovered from Davis have been sent for a
detailed forensic analysis. "A fresh case might be registered against
Davis under the [Official] Secrets Act once the forensics report was
received," he said.

Sanaullah said that Davis could also be tried under the Army Act. To
substantiate his viewpoint, he said recently 11 persons who had gone
missing from Rawalpindi's Adiyala jail were booked under the Army Act.

However, a senior lawyer said that only the Army has the authority to
register a case under the Army Act of 1952 against any person who is
involved in activities detrimental to the army or its installations.

"Such an accused will also be tried by the military court," Qazi
Anwer, former president of the Supreme Court Bar Association said. He
added that the civil authorities could register a case of espionage
against any person.

But interestingly, despite all the evidence of Davis's involvement in
espionage, the federal government is unlikely to try him for spying.

"He will be prosecuted only on charges of killing of two men in
Lahore," highly-placed sources told The Express Tribune.

The Davis saga has strained relations between Pakistan and the United
States, creating a dilemma for the PPP-led government.

More pressure

The pressure on the Pakistan government to release Davis has been
steadily intensifying.

According to The New York Times, "there have been a flurry of private
phone calls to Pakistan from Leon E Panetta, the CIA director, and
Admiral Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, all
intended to persuade the Pakistanis to release the secret operative."

Published in The Express Tribune, February 22nd, 2011.

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posted by u2r2h at 12:07 PM 0 comments

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Afghanistan War? AIRBASE! OIL!
Pulling out in 2014 would be an insult to the men and women who will die in 2011, 2012 and 2013!

As Washington and the world's media focus on the revolutionary events in Egypt, news about the war in Afghanistan all but vanished. Nevertheless, articles about several important subjects are linked below, including further developments in the Afghanistan banking scandal; new reports about joblessness and brain injuries among veterans; some coverage of President Karzai's visit to India, a major investor in Afghanistan and an important player in whatever endgame finally emerges; and a link to the new UFPJ fact sheet on civilian casualties in Afghanistan.

Further below I've linked (too) many good/useful articles and analyses about the events in Egypt, and about the implications of these events for other countries in the region and for US policy. How might the events in Egypt affect the war in Afghanistan? For openers, the revolution in Egypt is pretty dramatic evidence that the United States may have locked in too many resources into Afghanistan, leaving them unavailable for "defending" core US interests, e.g. in the Middle East. The US response to the events in Egypt is also a clear refutation that one of its priorities is "democracy," sometimes still used to justify the Afghanistan war. The "contagion" of events in Egypt may even reach as far as Pakistan, as one article linked below suggests. Perhaps the question about Egypt and Afghanistan could be discussed on the UFPJ Afghanistan list serve.

So it doesn't get lost, I'd like to link here an inspiring music video from the Cairo acoustic rock group Digla called "Tamam Ya Fandim – A Tribute to the Heroes of the Revolution." It's at Another good one is at Mondoweiss, and it's called "The World Supports You, Egypt" -

US Casualties

---- 711 Coalition soldiers were killed in 2010, including 499 US soldiers. 24 US soldiers were killed in January. In total, 2,318 Coalition soldiers have been killed since the beginning of the war, including 1,472 soldiers from the United States. 273 US soldiers were wounded in January; the total US wounded during 2010 was 5,178, and the number wounded since the war began is 10,226. To learn more go to and to On US wounded soldiers, see the important article by C.J.Chivers, "In Wider War in Afghanistan, Survival Rate of Wounded Rises," New York Times

Afghanistan Casualties
---- "Afghan civilian toll up 20 percent-U.N. report," by Jonathon Burch, Reuters [December 21, 2010] states that "Civilian casualties in Afghanistan rose by 20 percent in the first 10 months of this year compared with 2009, the United Nations said, with more than three-quarters killed or wounded as a result of insurgent attacks. In a quarterly report on Afghanistan this month, the United Nations said there were 6,215 civilian casualties from conflict-related incidents, including 2,412 deaths and 3,803 injuries, between January and the end of October this year."

The Cost of the War

---- According to the website, expenditures on the Afghanistan war have reached $375 billion and the total for both the Afghanistan and the Iraq wars is $1.148 trillion. For a useful resource on the costs of war, go to "Bring Our War $$ Home" at

Public opinion about the war in Afghanistan

---- According to the Afghanistan Study Group, two-thirds of self-identified conservative voters and Tea Party supporters call for either a reduction of U.S. troop levels in Afghanistan (the 39% plurality) or a complete withdrawal "as soon as possible" (27%). 24% think that the current levels of troops should be maintained. The majority 71% of conservative voters, including over two-thirds of Tea Party supporters, are worried that the war's cost to American taxpayers - $120 billion spent on the war in 2010 - will make it more difficult to reduce the U.S. deficit next year and balance the U.S. federal budget in the next decade.

"63 Percent of Americans Oppose War In Afghanistan." Opposition to the war in Afghanistan is at an all-time high, with 63 percent of the public now opposed to U.S. involvement there, according to a new CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey. Just 35 percent of survey respondents say they still support U.S. involvement. The increase in opposition to U.S. involvement comes as pessimism about how the war is going is rising. According to a poll done Dec. 17-19, 56 percent of the public believes that "things are going badly for the U.S. in Afghanistan."

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posted by u2r2h at 2:09 AM 0 comments

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Union Man - killed by the US State

The Wonderful Life and Strange Death of Walter Reuther

excerpted from the book

Dirty Truths

by Michael Parenti

City Lights Books, 1996, paper

(co-authored with Peggy Noton)

In recent decades, organized labor has endured a serious battering from conservative interests in both government and the corporate world. As progressives in the AFL-CIO try to rally their forces, they would do well to remember those few especially dedicated and gifted union leaders who understood the broader social and political dimensions of the labor struggle. Among such leaders looms the great figure of Walter Reuther. Rising from the ranks to spearhead the creation of the United Auto Workers (UAW), Reuther brought a special blend of unfaltering progressivism and efficacy to the U.S. political scene. For this he earned the wrath of powerful corporate and political interests. On the evening of May 9, 1970, Reuther, along with his wife,

The Early Struggle

Eight months before his death, Reuther reflected on the broader dimensions of labor's struggle: "The labor movement is about changing society . . . . What good is a dollar an hour more in wages if your neighborhood is burning down? What good is another week's vacation if the lake you used to go to, where you've got a cottage, is polluted and you can't swim in it and the kids can't play in it? What good is another $100 pension if the world goes up in atomic smoke?" Reuther was the kind of labor leader who unsettled the higher circles: militant, incorruptible, and dedicated both to the rank-and-file and a broad class agenda.

In 1958, at a GOP fundraiser, Senator Barry Goldwater declared that "Walter Reuther and the UAW-CIO are a more dangerous menace than . . . anything Soviet Russia might do to America."

... A two-page ad in the Wall Street Journal (9/22/58) ran an inch-high headline: "WILL YOU LET REUTHER GET AWAY WITH IT?" The ad warned: "Walter Reuther is already within reach of controlling your Congress. The American Labor movement has now become a political movement with the objective of establishing a socialist labor government in control of the economic and social life of this nation."
UAW founder Walter Reuther, about to take beating from company thugs

Hoover's Vendetta

FBI chief J. Edgar Hoover certainly never lost his violent bitter taste, stalking Walter for some forty years, using undercover informants and illegal bugging equipment. Reuther was on friendly terms with several Democratic presidents who submitted his name for positions on presidential boards and commissions. In each instance, Hoover successfully blocked Reuther's appointment by secretly circulating disinformation packets to the White House and members of Congress, featuring the doctored "For a Soviet America" letter and testimony by individuals falsely accusing Walter of communist affiliations.

Both the CIA and the FBI monitored Reuther's foreign travel, taking note of public comments of his that "might be construed as contrary to the foreign policy of the United States?' During World War II, Hoover made preparations to put all three Reuther brothers in custodial detention. He was ultimately dissuaded from doing so by John Bugas, chief FBI agent in Detroit.

In his early Detroit days, Walter had formed an alliance with communists within the union in order to combat conservative labor factions and company bosses. In 1938 he severed this association and some years later, after gaining control of the UAW board, he launched a purge of dedicated UAW organizers who were communists or close to the party. In 1949, he played a key role in the expulsion of eleven unions accused of being communist-led.

Over the years, Reuther denounced communism at every opportunity, seeking thereby to legitimate his own status as a loyal American. Like so many on the Left then and now, he did not realize that those who fight for social change on behalf of the less-privileged elements of society are abhorred by conservative elites whether they be communists or not. For the industrialists, financiers, and leading politicos, it made little difference whether their wealth and power was challenged by "communist subversives" or "loyal Americans?' The communist label was used in attempts to smear and delegitimate Reuther. But it was not an obsession with communism that caused them to hate and fear Reuther but an obsession with maintaining their privileged place in the politico-economic status quo.

At the same time, Reuther was critical of right-wing radicalism. In 1961, Attorney General Robert Kennedy asked him, Victor, and Joseph Rauh, an attorney for the UAW, to investigate the ultra-Right. (Reuther was a close friend and advisor to the Kennedys.) The resulting report warned of radical right elements inside the military and urged the president to dismiss generals and admirals who engaged in rightist political activities. The report also faulted J. Edgar Hoover for exaggerating "the domestic Communist menace at every turn" thus contributing "to the public's frame of mind upon which the radical right feeds."

From the first days of the AFL-CIO merger in 1955, irreconcilable political differences existed between Reuther and AFL-CIO president George Meany, a cold-war hawk. Under Meany, the AFL-CIO entered into an unholy alliance with the CIA in order to bolster conservative, anticommunist unions in other countries. These unions, as Victor Reuther describes them, were run by people who were "well soaked with both U.S. corporate and CIA juices. It was, in effect, an exercise in trade union colonialism."

In early 1968 the UAW withdrew from the AFL-CIO and joined forces with the Teamsters and two smaller unions to form the Alliance for Labor Action (ALA), with a membership totaling over four million. The Teamsters gave Reuther a free hand on political and social issues. With Nixon in the White House and the bombings in Indochina escalating to unprecedented levels, Reuther ran ads in the national media and appeared before congressional committees to denounce the war and call for drastic cuts in the military budget. While the AFL-CIO was proclaiming its support for Nixon's escalation of the war and his anti-ballistic missile program, the ALA was lobbying hard against both.

Nixon's invasion of Cambodia and the killing of four students at Kent State University prompted Reuther-the day before his death-to send a telegram to the White House condemning the war, the invasion, and "the bankruptcy of our policy of force and violence in Vietnam?' By 1970, Reuther was seen more than ever as a threat to the dominant political agenda, earning him top place on Nixon's enemy list.
Assassin tries to kill Walter Reuther 1948

The Fatal Crash: Some Disturbing Evidence

The struggles of Walter Reuther's life should cause us to give more than cursory attention to the questionable circumstances of his death. Here are some things to consider:

First, as president of the largest union in the country, Reuther had the resources for advancing his causes on the national scene as did few others. He was an extraordinarily effective proponent of socioeconomic equality and an outspoken critic of the military-industrial complex, the arms race, the CIA, the national security state, and the Vietnam war. For these, things he earned the enmity of people in high places.

Second, in the years before the fatal crash there had been assassination attempts against Walter and Victor. (Victor believes the attempt against him was intended as a message to Walter.) In each of these instances, state and federal law-enforcement agencies showed themselves at best lackadaisical in their investigative efforts, suggesting the possibility of official collusion or at least tolerance for the criminal deeds.

(In this context, it might be noted that in January 1970, only three months before the fatal plane crash, the Nixon White House requested Reuther's FBI file The call came from Egil Krogh, a Nixon staff member who was later arrested as a Watergate burglar. The file documented Reuther's leadership role in progressive and antiwar organizations. In 1985, when Detroit newsman William Gallagher asked why Nixon had wanted the file, Krogh was evasive, claiming a lack of memory.)

Third, like the suspicious near-crash that occurred the previous year, the fatal crash also involved a faulty altimeter in a small plane. It is a remarkable coincidence that Reuther would have been in two planes with the exact same malfunctioning in that brief time frame...

In a follow-up interview with us, Victor further noted:
Animosity from government had been present for some time [before the fatal crash]. It was not only Walter's stand on Vietnam and Cambodia that angered Nixon, but also I had exposed some CIA elements inside labor, and this was also associated with Walter .... There is a fine line between the mob and the CIA There is a lot of crossover. Throughout the entire history of labor relations there is a sordid history of industry in league with Hoover and the mafia .. . . You need to check into right-wing corporate groups and their links to the national security system

Checking into such things is no easy task. The FBI still refuses to turn over nearly 200 pages of documents regarding Reuther's death, including the copious correspondence between field offices and Hoover. And many of the released documents-some of them forty years old-are totally inked out. It is hard to fathom what national security concern is involved or why the FBI and CIA still keep so many secrets about Walter Reuther's life and death.

Reuther's demise appears as part of a truncation of liberal and radical leadership that included the deaths of four national figures: President John Kennedy, Malcolm X Martin Luther King, and Senator Robert Kennedy, and dozens of leaders m the Black Panther Party and in various community organizations. Whether Reuther's death was part of a broader agenda to decapitate and demoralize the mass movements of that day, or whether such an agenda existed at all, are questions that go beyond the scope of our inquiry.

Suffice it to say that Victor's belief, shared by Walter's daughter Elizabeth Reuther Dickmeyer and other members of the family, that the crash was no accident sounds disturbingly plausible. Despite the limited investigation there is enough evidence to suggest that foul play was involved. The untimely death, of this dedicated and effective progressive labor leader raises disquieting questions about the criminal nature of state power in what purports to be a democracy.

In C. Wright Mill's words: "What people are interested in is not always what is to their interest; the troubles they are aware of are not always the ones that beset them. . . It is not only that [people] can be unconscious of their situations; they are often falsely conscious of them."

One can see instances of false consciousness all about us. There are people with legitimate grievances as employees, taxpayers, and consumers who direct their wrath against welfare mothers but not against corporate welfarism, against the inner city poor not the outer city rich, against human services that are needed by the community rather than regressive tax systems that favor the affluent. They support defense budgets that fatten the militarists and their corporate contractors and dislike those who protest the pollution more than they dislike the polluters.

In their confusion they are ably assisted by conservative commentators and hate-talk mongers who provide ready-made explanations for their real problems, who attack victims instead of victimizers, denouncing feminists and minorities rather than sexists and racists, denouncing the poor-rather than the rapacious corporate rich who create poverty. So the poor are defined as "the poverty problem." The effects of the problem are taken as the problem itself. The victims of the problem are seen as the cause, while the perpetrators are depicted as innocent or even beneficial.

Does false consciousness exist? It certainly does and in mass marketed quantities. It is the mainstay of the conservative reactionism of the 1980s and 1990s. Without it, those at the top, who profess a devotion to our interests while serving themselves, would be in serious trouble indeed.

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posted by u2r2h at 2:14 AM 0 comments

PD scott - NEW BOOK: American War Machine

Having read a few of Peter Dale Scott's earlier books, I was looking forward to his new work,

American War Machine.  Published by Roman & Littlefield in late 2010, this book examines a wide-ranging number of covert US operations since World War II, and, among other things, demonstrates that many of these operations were intimately connected with, and dependent on, illicit drug trafficking.

Scott previously defined concepts such as deep events, deep politics and the deep state, to refer to covert mechanisms that facilitate the strategies of the politically minded rich, a group otherwise referred to as the overworld.  Deep events, which Scott defines as those which are "systematically ignored or falsified in the mainstream media and public consciousness," can be seen as sharing certain features, such as cover-up of evidence and irresoluble controversy over what happened. These features contribute to a suppressed memory of the event among the general public. Deep events are often associated with illegally sanctioned violence, and involve little known, but historically evident, cooperation between leaders of the state and organized crime. 
In American War Machine, Scott sets out to write the first "deep history" of such events, politics and state entities. As he writes: "In my experience, deep events are better understood collectively than in isolation. When looked at together, they constitute a large pattern, that of deep history."

Some of the more well known deep events are briefly reviewed, such as the JFK assassination and Tonkin Gulf incident, as well as the plans known as Operation Northwoods. Scott also makes clear that he now sees 9/11 as not only a deep event, but a "constitutional deep event" in that the implementation of continuity of government (COG) plans, as a result of 9/11, means that the US constitution has been circumvented in favor of what former assistant attorney general, Jack Goldsmith, called the "Terror Presidency." The latter office has been exploited by an influential power group, among whose major operatives are Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld, to pursue long-standing goals of US global domination at the expense of citizen protections as has been done with warrantless surveillance, warrantless detention and suspension of habeas corpus.

One great value of Scott's writing is that, as with the "deep" terms, he provides us with a wealth of new intelligent language that allows people to discuss matters that otherwise either leave too much to uncertainty or, alternatively, generate confusing and unsupported assumptions. With phrases like "global dominance machine" and the "global drug connection" we can better attribute acts and plans to an influential and interconnected transnational organization that is not yet fully defined, while at the same time not oversimplifying by implying that the US government is always to blame. On the other hand, the "war machine" is a US-based construct that has been used to enforce those acts and plans, and therefore the term war machine helps take us a step closer to seeing how the US government relates to the global dominance machine.

Another great value of the book is the tremendous historical perspective provided for the origins and changing patterns of the global drug connection. Scott begins this history lesson by examining the certain characters involved in the World War II era intelligence agency called the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), the birth of the National Security Council and the Office of Policy Coordination (OPC).
The book describes how leaders of the wartime OSS, including William Donovan and Allen Dulles, lobbied for the creation of the CIA through the National Security Act of 1947. At the same time, however, they created private alternatives for covert operations that would operate outside of government control, such as the World Commerce Corporation (WCC). 
As CIA executive director, Buzzy Krongard, would later say – ""the whole OSS was really nothing but Wall Street bankers and lawyers." Scott confirms this by writing that, when the CIA was created, it was dominated by "aristocratic elements of the New York overworld." Despite this fact, and despite the creation of privately controlled CIA-like alternatives, a secret government funded organization was authorized by the National Security Council a year later. This was the OPC, led by Allen Dulles and Frank Wisner, a State Department official who wielded unprecedented power due to his position in New York law and financial circles.  
What American War Machine covers most well are the operations that the OPC and CIA engaged in that contributed to the establishment and growth of drug trafficking and terrorism throughout the world. Scott writes: "After World War II, the United States, along with Britain and France, recurrently used both drug networks and terrorist groups as assets or proxies in the Cold War."
The book begins this discussion in Mexico, where a global drug connection consisting of major organized crime figures and US covert operatives worked together to give birth to a national narcosystem that competed for control of the entire country for many years. The Mexican drug problem was pre-existing, and Scott describes how it grew as a result of a reduction in Chinese opium production in the 1930s. In the late 1940s, however, the Mexican Federal Security Directorate (DFS), which was "setup with FBI assistance" and "partly managed and protected by its sister organization, the CIA," developed an "institutional relationship with drug traffickers [who] supplied recruits for off-the-books governmental violence."

The DFS became a protector of the drug traffickers and "both in turn were protected by elements in the CIA." The Mexican drug traffic, which was a primary factor in the introduction of drugs to the US and Canada, was also dominated by major figures in international organized crime, such as Meyer Lansky, Bugsy Siegel, and "Lucky" Luciano. It was also controlled by the OPC Mexico station chief, E. Howard Hunt, who later was convicted in the Watergate scandal.   
In the early 1950s, Operation Paper was a US initiative to supply arms and materiel to the opium-trafficking Kuotmintang (KMT) in Burma, for the purpose of invading the southern Chinese province of Yunnan. Hunt and Lansky both had pre-war KMT connections (as did OSS chief Donovan) and were apparently instrumental in developing the flow of Chinese opium to Mexico via the KMT. Hunt had been an OSS agent under Paul Helliwell in Kunming, which was "a station that had made payments to its agents in opium."
Helliwell is an important figure in the context of American War Machine. He coordinated the purchase of General Claire Chennault's Civil Air Transport (CAT), an offshoot of the wartime "Flying Tigers" that later was modified for transport of drugs through Taiwan. CAT is the predecessor of Air America, the air corps that the CIA utilized for drug-running out of Southeast Asia.  
Paul Helliwell also incorporated a CIA-proprietary firm called Sea Supply, Inc. which funneled funds to OPC agents, including Bangkok-based Willis Bird, and supplied covert operatives in Thailand. Through such mechanisms, and at a time when Chinese opium production was vanishing, "US covert support for the Thai and KMT drug traffickers converted Southeast Asia, for more than two decades, into the world's major source of opium and heroin."
the 21st century version of women and children first

In 1953, OSS chief Donovan was named ambassador to Thailand, with additional powers as "Personal Representative of the President." Donovan's power in the region allowed for the OPC and the players who formed WCC to dominate the international drug trade under the guise of fighting the spread of communism.   Thai organizations like the Thai Border Police (BPP) and the Police Aerial Reinforcement Unit (PARU) were developed into off-the-books paramilitary resources for US dominance in Southeast Asia and were paid in part through the drug trade and also through CIA funding.  

Although Scott takes pains to recognize that some of these maneuvers might have actually stabilized the region (e.g. BPP activities), he also emphasizes how important these activities were to long-term US foreign policy. He writes that, overall, this was how a bureaucratic cabal used Thailand as a base to, over a decade, "induce US military engagement in Southeast Asia in advance of presidential authority or even knowledge. By 1965, if not earlier, this engagement had produced the Vietnam War."
The book moves on to Laos, where in the early 1960s the CIA attempted to polarize the communist and anti-communist factions of the nation using the cross-border forces of PARU. CIA-controlled KMT forces from Burma joined in this effort. Scott describes how US intelligence agency leaders simultaneously manipulated President Eisenhower, and shows that long-term war in Laos and Vietnam was initiated without approval from the US government and was driven primarily by overworld concerns.

The Golden Triangle encompassing Burma, Thailand and Laos, was for many years the largest opium producing region in the world. Scott writes about how CIA-supported drug proxies and the de-facto protection they conferred on the opium trade in this and similar drug producing regions (e.g. the Golden Crescent) is "clearly a major historical factor for the world crime scourge today."
The de-facto protection conferred upon drug traffickers by the CIA included protection of some of the dominant figures in organized crime, who were in some cases also involved in high-level CIA paramilitary operations. Theodore Shackley, the CIA station chief in Miami who was responsible for the failed operations aimed at overthrowing Castro in the early 1960s, became CIA station chief in Laos in 1966. Scott writes about mobster John Roselli's ties to Shackley operations, and provides evidence that Santo Trafficante, the biggest rival of Meyer Lansky, might have also been working with Shackley representatives in Laos.

The 1971 declaration of a "war on drugs" by President Nixon resulted in the targeting of Turkey as an opium source but, in effect, also resulted in the growth of the opium production in Southeast Asia.  The Golden Triangle continued to lead in opium production until US interests moved from that region to Afghanistan. Deep state activities continued to play a major role in the transition of drug production from one region to another.

Chapter 7 of American War Machine is perhaps the most interesting, as it describes the global drug connection and its ties to a "shadow CIA," which has functioned as a tool for international overworld interests including those referred to as the Safari Club.  OPC officer Paul Helliwell figures prominently in this chapter, in part for his role in creating the CIA-related Castle Bank, which laundered money and helped finance off-the-books operations, and for his ties to organized crime. Castle Bank's connections to the overworld are discussed as are its links to OSS agent C.V. Starr, whose insurance empire evolved into the company we know as AIG. This chapter also introduces Adnan Khashoggi, who appears throughout the deep history of US foreign policy and played a major role in the activities of Castle Bank's successor, the Bank of Credit and Commercial International (BCCI). 

Scott writes about some of the deep events in which these players converge. He states that -- "BCCI provided the initial infrastructure for the CIA intervention in Afghanistan in 1979 and the ensuing alliance with the major drug trafficker Gulbeddin Hekmatyar." Additionally, "Shackley, Khashoggi, and BCCI were instrumental in inaugurating the illegal Iran-Contra connection of 1985-1986."
The book makes some interesting references to an OPC successor organization created by the Pentagon and run by Shackley's OPC colleague and Operation Paper overseer, Richard Stillwell, called the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC). Scott notes that the JSOC was created in 1980 and by 1981 was, according to Joseph Trento, "one of the most secret operations of the US government." This reader was led to consider that the JSOC might be controlled in part by the shadow CIA, as are other military and intelligence organizations such as Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI).   

A description of the war machine in chapter 8 includes the role played by private armies and private intelligence companies. Firms such as Blackwater and Science Applications International (SAIC) are briefly discussed but the focus turns to lesser known companies including Diligence LLC and Far West Ltd.

Chapter 9 reviews the implications of the 9/11 events in light of other deep events, without going into detail about what happened on 9/11 or who might have been responsible. Scott does, however, state that – "Without understanding the details, we can safely conclude that operations of the CIA were somehow implicated, whether innocently or conspiratorially, in the background of both the JFK assassination and 9/11." It is worthwhile to consider Scott's perspective that "9/11 is not wholly without precedent in US history. It should be seen not as a unique departure from orderly constitutional government – a coup d'etat – but as yet another deep event of the sort that has continued to erode the American constitutional system of open politics and liberties."

The book concludes by discussing the role of the US under Obama in Afghanistan, and the fact that Afghanistan has become the world's largest producer of opium and heroin. Intriguing remarks about BCCI, Pakistan's ISI, and US connections to a "global terrorist" named Dawood Ibrahim, make the final chapter interesting reading.

Overall, American War Machine is a remarkable collection of interwoven facts and concepts that provides an understandable framework for our previously unexplained deep history. As a 9/11 researcher, I found it to be an invaluable resource for my own education and for consideration of future work. As a citizen I can say it is a tremendous achievement that will, for many years to come, be useful to members of any free society that wish to remain free. Everyone should read this book.

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Thursday, February 10, 2011


The Economist's Buttonwood columnist made the point late last year that the industry seems to be the victim of spin and I fully concur.  The bullish consensus for 2011 simply overlooks too may undesirable facts, which he lists.  If you missed it, here is the full article:  He compares central bankers to entertainers who keep plates spinning on top of poles and concludes with an interesting reference to a natural law:


"This list of problems is the reason why it is so hard for Buttonwood to join the bullish consensus for 2011. The authorities have kept the plates spinning by dint of an enormous effort and some unprecedented monetary measures. But the underlying problems have not been solved. And the law of gravity cannot be suspended for ever."


- Buttonwood

A regular column in The Economist, named after the Buttonwood Agreement which created the organization which later became the New York Stock Exchange




  Please note that all past issues of Prosper! are available Here for your convenience.





Debt, Food Prices & Revolutions





"Roughly speaking, the mess we are in is the worst since 17th century financial collapse. Comparisons with the 1930's are ludicrous. We've gone far beyond that. And, alas, the courage & political will to recognize the mess & act wisely to reverse gears, is absent in U.S. leadership, where the problems were hatched & where the rot is by far the deepest."


- Harry Schultz (87)

Legendary author of the International Harry Schultz Letter (HSL); see

Above quote taken from his last issue, published last month, after 45 years of publishing HSL; HSL's final words: "Good luck to us all."


What a mess, indeed.  It's a total wonder to me that investors continue to have most of their eggs in debt securities and equities!  In contrast, let's see what seasoned investor Harry Schultz's final asset allocation recommendation was:


50% gold stocks & bullion: 15% blue chips, 5% junior, 5% bullion via futures, 25-35% in physical bullion.


15-20% Government notes/bills/bonds ("In 3-6 month T-Bills/bonds only — buy these only in Swiss Francs, Australian dollars, Canadian dollars, Brazilian reals, Singapore dollars, Chinese Yuan only)."


15-20% Commodities: via futures, commodity stocks &/or physical assets.


5-10% Other Stocks (than gold stocks).


0-5% bear stock market protection via ETFs like ProShares UltraShort Dow30


1-5% Cash in hand. ("Stored privately")


Hummm...  There are some notable similarities in the above with the strategic asset allocation advice I give my clients.  But, I have to say, he's a bit more radical than I am.  For example, I don't recommend that clients have cash stored privately!  But gold shares, bullion, short duration non-US debt securities, commodities and cautious exposure to stock markets are certainly part of my repertoire. 


Did you know that the biggest holder of US debt is now the Fed itself?  Yep, they have more than China does!  And Ben Bernanke is not done yet with his QE2 experiment.  The mind boggles...


The So-called 'Debt Ceiling'


On the 3rd of January, the chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisors was quoted as saying that the US will probably have to increase the cap on how much debt it can have outstanding and it would be foolish to politicise the issue. "The debt ceiling is not something to toy with", he said.  What?!  What do you call raising the debt ceiling 92 times over the past 93 years then??


Here's a very short history of this farcical US Treasury's 'debt ceiling' (with thanks to The Privateer, as my source – see for more about The Privateer): the debt ceiling was introduced in October 1917 as an adjunct to the Second Liberty Bond Act.  This was four years after the establishment of the income tax and the Federal Reserve and six months after the US Congress declared war on Germany and entered WW1.


The US Congress had passed the First Liberty Bond Act on 24 April 1917, two weeks after their declaration of war.  There was some concern about the extent of the borrowing that the Treasury might deem necessary in order to fight the war.  Hence the introduction of a debt "limit" or "ceiling" - originally placed at $US 8 (that's EIGHT) Billion (that's BILLION). 


By the time the war ended in November 1918, Treasury debt far exceeded the original $US 8 Billion ceiling.  No matter, it was raised to suit, just as it has been raised to suit ever since. The US government never "toys" with the debt ceiling, it simply raises it!


Just before the US entered WWII the ceiling stood at $US 65 Billion. By the time President Nixon declared the US dollar no longer redeemable in gold on demand (as was required under Bretton Woods), it was $US 430 Billion.  When the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, the ceiling stood at $US 4,145 Billion.  When 9/11 struck in 2001, it was $US 5,950 Billion.


Today, less than ten years later, it is $US 14,294 Billion (and the actual debt is $US 14,128 Billion, or $US 127,517 per taxpayer).  So, sometime between now and April 2011, it will have to be raised again, probably to $US 16,000 Billion or $US 16 TRILLION.


The progression has clearly become exponential.  The end result - the complete collapse of the 20th century "model" of a financial and monetary system based on governments issuing IOUs - is obviously inevitable.  The only remaining question is when?  To help us answer that question, let's have a look at President Obama's track record...


On the 24th of December 2009, just over one year ago, the US Senate signed a bill raising the ceiling by $US 290 Billion to $US 12.394 TRILLION.  Mr Obama signed that bill into law four days later.  Then, just over six weeks later, on the 12th of February 2010, Mr Obama signed another bill which raised the Treasury's debt ceiling by another $US 1.9 TRILLION to its present level of $US 14.294 TRILLION. 


So... in the month and a half of Mr Obama's presidency between December 28, 2009 and February 12, 2010, the borrowing limits on the US Treasury were raised by... $US 2.19 TRILLION!  Was Mr Obama always so casual about the 'debt ceiling'?  No; not before he became President anyway...  Here are Mr Obama's thoughts on the debt ceiling in 2006, when he voted against increasing the ceiling:

"The fact that we are here today to debate raising America's debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the U.S. Government can't pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our Government's reckless fiscal policies. Increasing America's debt weakens us domestically and internationally. Leadership means that 'the buck stops here'. Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership. Americans deserve better."

(Source: Sen. Obama, Congressional Record, S.2237-8, 3/16/06)


In 2007 and in 2008, when the Senate voted to increase the limit by $US 850 billion and $US 800 billion respectively, then-Senator Obama did not bother to vote. But he did vote for TARP however in October 2008, which then increased the debt limit by another $700 billion.  He was just getting warmed up!  In fact, since the day he took office as President, US Treasury debt has increased by $US 3.6 TRILLION!!




Obama was certainly right when he said in 2006 that "Americans deserve better". But, I ask you: is that what they got?  Make no mistake: officials in Washington know full well that the US can never repay its debt.  That's why they will continue to strongly argue that a refusal by the Senate to increase the debt ceiling would be "catastrophic" and "a sign of insanity". 


But who's insane here, really?  Here's a tip to find out: ask your banker to raise the limit on your credit card or else you won't be able to meet the minimum payments, and see what he or she says about your way of thinking!   


You and I live in a world where money, markets and the whole financial system is totally dependent on the debt issued by governments.  No government debt has ever been repaid in full when government has imposed a monopoly on what can be used as money by passing and enforcing "legal tender" laws that effectively state that its own debt paper (in other words, the bank NOTES issued by its central bank) cannot be refused in settlement of a debt. 


Eventual default then becomes an absolute certainty when government makes its own debt paper the ONLY "reserve" behind the "money" it alone can create.  The US did this under President Nixon in 1971.  The whole world went along with it because the US Dollar was already the reserve currency (because until then it was redeemable on demand in gold at a fixed exchange rate of $US 35 per troy ounce of gold) and no government or people anywhere dared jettison it. 


The result is the global financial quagmire we are in.  If there is going to be any progress towards a real solution to this MESS we're in, a necessary step is the recognition that we do have a DEBT PROBLEM.  The next step is to start working on necessary monetary reform and bring back sound money.  Until these are recognised as necessary steps, it's caveat emptor with any financial asset!


Top of the Agenda: Food Prices


Funny how food prices have been catapulted to the top of the agenda, as well as the need for monetary reform!  I'm referring to French President Sarkozy's own declared agenda last month, as France takes on the G20 presidency for 2011.  He has been meeting with fellow G20 leaders in recent weeks to win support for his plans and assess what France can realistically achieve.


Sarkozy has run into resistance in Washington to his plans to establish a new monetary system.  "We want to reassure our American friends that the dollar will remain a pre-eminent currency.  But a pre-eminent currency does not mean the sole currency.  We have the right to reflect on other approaches," he said.  Well... you can just imagine the response from Washington: "Oh really, Nicolas?  You think so?  Who the hell do you think you are? Mind your own business!" or something like it...


The third plank of Monsieur Sarkozy's G20 agenda - creating a permanent institutional framework for the G20, parallel to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank - also faces resistance.  As a result, he has shifted the focus of his G20 presidency on food prices.  "If we don't do anything we run the risk of food riots in the poorest countries and a very unfavourable effect on global economic growth," he said.


He's right that food prices should be a concern.  The UN's food agency has reported that global food prices hit a record high in December 2010, exceeding the late 2008 levels which led to food riots in many nations.  But that does not necessarily mean that governments should think they need to 'do something... or anything' about it.  That would only guarantee that food prices eventually go even higher than they otherwise would have!


Here's the thing though: authoritarian governments fear rising food prices above all else.  Because of food riots and, as Gerald Celente likes to say: "When people lose everything and they have nothing else to lose, they lose it!"  So, what exactly is causing food prices to rise so much right now?  Well, it was suggested by China and others that US policies were to blame; more specifically, US monetary policy.


"Sacrebleu, we're under attack!  Not only by the French, but the whole world," was the spontaneous reaction in Bernankeville.  Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke quickly grabbed his suitcase and went straight to the press to strenuously deny the charges, as if central bankers were in the habit of going to the press.  Hummm... so there must have been some truth in the accusation then!


"Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke rejected complaints by China and other developing economies that U.S. policies are driving up global food and energy prices," the Wall Street Journal reported, "and instead pinned the blame on accelerating growth in emerging markets and their inadequate response."  Bernanke, speaking at the National Press Club in Washington, said it is up to other countries to control their inflation.  Ha!


Here's a real beauty: "I think it's entirely unfair to attribute excess demand pressures in emerging markets to US monetary policy, because emerging markets have all the tools they need to address excess demand in those countries," he said in answering a question from the audience. "It's really up to emerging markets to find appropriate tools to balance their own growth." 


That reminded me of what John Connally, in 1971, famously told a delegation of Europeans worried about exchange rate fluctuations.  This was soon after he had been appointed US Secretary of the Treasury by President Nixon.  He said: "the American dollar is our currency, but your problem."  Plus çà change... plus c'est pareil!


That was then, Ben is now.  Someone should tell Ben Bernanke to stay in his bunker.  He is not made for the media.  His recent appearance on 60 Minutes was quite shocking and somewhat disturbing to watch.  But his more recent trip down to the Press Club was even worse.  Here is something else he said in a rare question and answer session with journalists, as reported by The Telegraph earlier this week: "Clearly what's happening is not a dollar effect, it's a growth effect."


Huh?  What?  Let me get this straight: is Bernanke saying that what's behind the increase in food prices is the rapid growth in the developing economies, rather than the Fed's decision to keep printing money?  Yes, that's what he's saying!  The man is unbelievable!!  "It's a growth effect"!!??!!  The spin on that one is killing me.


The food supply is certainly not "growing" worldwide.  What is?  It's the number of US dollars worldwide.  And given the fact that many of these foodstuffs trade internationally in US dollars and the value of US dollars has been falling for years, food prices are miraculously rising.  Could it be that the real reason behind the protests in Egypt and elsewhere is not a sudden desire for reform but rather, simply the price of food rising too fast?  Hummm...


Tahrir Square (Source: Wikipedia, 2010–2011 Arab world protests)

What's Going On In Egypt?


Before you accept what you see on the mainstream news about what is going on in Egypt, please do yourself a favour and read these two recent articles: "Egypt's Revolution: Creative Destruction for a 'Greater Middle East'?",

by F. William Engdahl, and an interview by the Daily Bell with

Richard Maybury on the "Collapse of the Anglo-American Empire and What It Means for You".  You can find them here http://www.engdahl.oilgeopolitics.netand here


Whether you agree or not with any of the views expressed by these two gentlemen matters not.  At least your mind will have been exposed to perhaps new points of view on what is going on and you would then be better equipped to decide for yourself what you want to think about the situation.  One way or another, you must surely realise that these are not ordinary times.  


I agree with Richard Maybury when he says, in his interview with the Daily Bell, that: "the essential problem is the malinvestment that was created by the Federal Reserve counterfeiting dollars since 1913, and almost all that malinvestment is still out there and needs to be shaken out.  The pain we have been going through since August of 2007 has essentially been for nothing because the federal government stopped the malinvestment, or most of it, from being shaken out, and that traumatic experience is yet to come. So, anybody who thinks we are getting to the end of this thing is dreaming."


He thinks we are in the beginning of a "great revolution of currencies" and that we are going to go back to the "the type of money that can't be created without limits out of thin air".  He has been writing about what he calls the 'Great Monetary Calamity' for some years now.  In the interview, he says that "now we are seeing the process of the world bringing this calamity to an end.  So the dollar and all other fiat currencies will no longer be fiat. They will be tied to something real, perhaps gold..."


As for Mr Engdahl's article, its contents are probably going to shock you even more.  His take on the situation is based on much research, which cannot be simply dismissed out of hand.  But your conscious mind probably will...  Because your subconscious mind, which is the depository of all that you have heard and seen all of your life, is millions of times more powerful (remember?).


Nevertheless, here's a peek into Engdahl's article:

"Yet while the ultimate outcome of defiant street protests in Cairo and across Egypt and the Islamic world remains unclear, the broad outlines of a US covert strategy are already clear.


No one can dispute the genuine grievances motivating millions to take to the streets at risk of life.


No one can defend atrocities of the Mubarak regime and its torture and repression of dissent. No one can dispute the explosive rise in food prices as Chicago and Wall Street commodity speculators, and the conversion of American farmland to the insane cultivation of corn for ethanol fuel drive grain prices through the roof. Egypt is the world's largest wheat importer, much of it from the USA. Chicago wheat futures rose by a staggering 74% between June and November 2010 leading to an Egyptian food price inflation of some 30% despite government subsidies.


What is widely ignored in the CNN and BBC and other Western media coverage of the Egypt events is the fact that whatever his excesses at home, Egypt's Mubarak represented a major obstacle within the region to the larger US agenda."


Huh, what?  Hosni Mubarak and Barack Obama are not friends?

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posted by u2r2h at 8:30 PM 0 comments

Trained to murder - Special Forces - Raymond Davis

A telescope, photographs of sensitive defense installations and makeup for a facial disguise were found in the car of a former U.S. Special Forces officer after he fatally shot two young Pakistani men from his car, according to reports.

The shooting of the two Pakistanis occurred Jan. 27 when Davis was in Lahore. The widow of one of the two men, Shumaila Faheem, committed suicide on Sunday by taking poison, Al-Jazeera reported.
Shumaila Kanwal, Pakistani Woman, Commits Suicide After U.S. Shooting

Is American at Center of U.S.-Pakistani Crisis a Diplomat or Spy?
Hamza Ahmed, AP
Pakistani security officials escort Raymond Davis to a local court in Lahore, Pakistan, on Jan. 28.

Pakistani police said Davis fired five shots from his Glock from his car and then got out of the car to finish off the job by shooting both men two times.

U.S. officials said Davis fired only five shots and remained inside his vehicle, The Washington Post reported.

A third Pakistani was run over and killed by a U.S. consulate vehicle that had come to assist Davis, police said.

Both official government accounts agree on at least one thing: The two dead Pakistani men were probably would-be robbers. That fact was based on a report from two (paid?) Pakistani citizens who came forward after seeing TV coverage of the crime and recognizing the men as having robbed them previously.

But to further complicate the already murky story, The Washington Post quoted an anonymous Pakistani intelligence official who said the motorcyclists were intelligence agents. A spokesman for Pakistan's main intelligence agency denied that Tuesday.

Alternative websites and the blogosphere -- as well as Pakistani media -- are awash in speculation about whether Davis was a diplomat or a spy or mercenary. He was reportedly found to be in possession of pictures of Pakistani army installations.

Counterpunch magazine investigated the company Davis said he works for in the U.S., Hyperion Protective Consultants. The company website gives an address in Orlando, Fla.

Counterpunch said it could find no evidence that Hyperion is a real company.

"First, there is not and never has been any such company located at the 5100 North Lane address," the site reported. "It is only an empty storefront, with empty shelves along one wall and an empty counter on the opposite wall, with just a lone used Coke cup sitting on it. A leasing agency sign is on the window."

The U.S. has stepped up pressure on Pakistan by sending three members of the House of Representatives to meet with Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani. They told him that Congress was working on its budget and looking for areas to cut.

"It is imperative that they release him and there is certainly the possibility that there would be repercussions if they don't," Rep. John Kline, a Republican from Minnesota, told reporters on his return, Agence France-Presse reported.

He was a security contractor from a Florida-based firm, Hyperion Protective Consultants, LLC.. – File Photo LAHORE: Deputy Prosecutor General of Punjab, Rana Bakhtiar said on Sunday that Raymond Davis had fired the bullets from the back thus it was not a case of 'self defense' as he had stated earlier. Rana also said that Davis, charged with murder of two motorcyclists in Lahore, did not hold any special privileges as a diplomat. Referring to Article 49-2 of the Vienna Convention, he said that diplomatic officials only hold privilege when they are on duty, but Davis was in Pakistan on a business visa. Davis is being described by the American media as a security contractor from a Florida-based firm, Hyperion Protective Consultants, LLC.

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posted by u2r2h at 5:00 PM 0 comments

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

arms producers - killing machines - Coercion and Blackmail

World's largest arms exporters

The unit in this table are so-called trend indicator values expressed in millions of US dollars at 1990s prices. These values do not represent real financial flows but are a crude instrument to estimate volumes of arms transfers, regardless of the contracted prices, which can be as low as zero in the case of military aid. Ordered by descending 2000-2009 values. The information is from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute.

Current Rank Supplier 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
1  United States 7220 5694 5091 5596 6750 6600 7394 7658 6090 6795
2  Russia 3985 6011 5773 5202 6260 5321 6156 5243 6026 4469
3  Germany 1603 821 892 1697 1067 1875 2510 3002 2499 2473
4  France 1055 1270 1308 1288 2194 1633 1577 2342 1831 1851
5  United Kingdom 1484 1257 915 617 1180 915 808 987 1027 1024
6  Spain 46 7 120 156 56 108 757 565 603 925
7  China 272 496 515 632 282 306 599 412 544 870
8  Israel 354 360 414 358 612 315 282 379 271 760
9  Netherlands 280 203 243 342 208 583 1221 1322 554 608
10  Italy 189 217 400 312 214 743 525 706 424 588
11 Sweden Sweden 46 830 185 515 305 537 417 367 457 353
12  Switzerland 176 193 157 174 250 267 306 324 467 270
13  Ukraine 288 661 244 430 202 281 557 799 269 214
14  Canada 110 129 170 255 268 235 231 343 236 177
15  South Korea 8 165 N/A 104 29 48 94 228 80 163

2008 rank 2007 rank Company (country) 2008 arms sales (US$ m.) 2007 arms sales (US$ m.) Arms sales as share of company's total sales (%), 2008
1 2 United Kingdom BAE Systems 32 420 29 860 95
2 3 United States Lockheed Martin 29 880 29 400 70
3 1 United States Boeing 29 200 30 480 48
4 4 United States Northrop Grumman 26 090 24 600 77
5 5 United States General Dynamics 22 780 21 520 78
6 6 United States Raytheon 21 030 19 540 91
7 7 European Union EADS 17 900 13 100 28
8 9 Italy Finmeccanica 13 020 9 850 52
9 8 United States L-3 Communications 12 160 11 240 82
10 10 France Thales Group 10 760 9 350 58
11 11 United States United Technologies 9 980 8 760 17
12 12 United States SAIC 7 350 6 250 73
13 16 United States KBR 5 730 5 000 50
14 13 United States Computer Sciences Corp. 5 710 5 420 34
15 15 United States Honeywell 5 310 5 020 15
16 19 United States ITT Corp. 5 170 3 850 44
17 17 United Kingdom Rolls-Royce 4 720 4 580 28
18 23 Russia Almaz-Antey 4 340 2 780 94
19 25 United States AM General 4 040 2 670 . .
20 N United States Navistar International 3 900 370 26

Arms sales are defined by SIPRI as sales of military goods and services to military customers, including both domestic and export sales. Military goods and services are those which are designed specifically for military purposes."

Country     Weapon manufacturers and Arms Traders
Argentina     Fabricaciones Militares
Fábrica Militar de Aviones
Austria     Glock
Steyr Mannlicher
Australia     Thales Australia (formerly Australian Defence Industries Ltd)
Australian Submarine Corporation
BAE Systems Australia
Boeing Australia
Bangladesh     Defence Advancement Trading Company (DATCO)
Belgium     Fabrique Nationale de Herstal
Bosnia and Herzegovina     Zrak dd
Brazil     Ares Aeroespacial e Defesa
CBC - Companhia Brasileira de Cartuchos
IMBEL - Indústria Brasileira de Material Bélico, belonging to the Brazilian Army
Bulgaria     TEREM
Arsenal Corporation
Canada     Colt Canada
MacDonald Dettwiler
Spar Aerospace
China     Norinco
Chengdu Aircraft Industry Group
China Nanchang Aircraft Manufacturing Corporation
Changhe Aircraft Industries Corporation
China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC)
China National Nuclear Corporation
China Aerospace Science & Technology Corporation (CASC)

PolyTech Legend
Denmark     Skandinavisk Aero Industri
Egypt     AOI
France     EADS
Dassault Aviation
Thales Group
GIAT Industries
Germany     Carl Walther GmbH Sportwaffen
Diehl BGT Defence
Heckler & Koch
Greece     EAS
India     Hindustan Aeronautics Limited
Bharat Electronics Limited
Defence Research and Development Organisation
Ordnance Factory Board of India
Tata Aerospace
Larsen & Toubro
Tata Motors
Bharat Earth Movers Limited
Bharat Dynamics
Indonesia     PT Pindad
Perindustrian Angkatan Darat
Iran     Defense Industries Organization
Iran Aviation Industries Organization
Iran Electronics Industries
Israel     Aeronautics Defense Systems Ltd
Astronautics C.A Ltd
Automotive Industries
Elbit Systems
Israel Aerospace Industries
Israel Shipyards
Israel Weapons Industries
Rafael Advanced Defense Systems
Soltam Systems
Italy     Beretta
Benelli (firearms)
Mexico     ALFA
Hydra Technologies of Mexico
San Luis Rassini
Valdez Industria
Myanmar     Reliable Technology Limited
Norway     Kongsberg Defense & Aerospace
Nordic Ammunition Group
Poland     Bumar
Pakistan     Pakistan Aeronautical Complex
Heavy Industries Taxila
Pakistan Ordnance Factories
Heavy Mechanical Complex Texila
Portugal     INDEP
Russia     Sukhoi
Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant
Tikhomirov Scientific Research Institute of Instrument Design
Moscow Institute of Thermal Technology
Kartsev-Venediktov Design Bureau
Almaz Scientific Industrial Corporation
Vympel NPO
FSUE "Splav"
Serbia     Zastava Arms
South Africa     Denel
South Korea     Hyundai Rotem
Samsung Techwin
Spain     EADS CASA
Airbus Military
Santa Bárbara Sistemas (General Dynamics)
Santana Motors
Sweden     BAE Systems Bofors
Switzerland     Astra Arms
Pilatus Aircraft
MOWAG (General Dynamics)
Thailand     Chaiseri Metal & Rubber
Thailand Aviation Industries TAI
Turkey     MKEK
Ukraine     Antonov
Malyshev Factory
RPC Fort
Yuzhnoye Design Bureau
United Kingdom     BAE Systems
Cobham plc
United States     AAI Corporation
Alliant Techsystems
BAE Systems Inc.
Bushmaster Firearms International
Colt's Manufacturing Company
General Atomics
General Electric (primarily through GEAE)
General Dynamics
Northrop Grumman Corporation
Raytheon Corporation
THOR Global Defense Group
United Technologies (primarily through Pratt and Whitney, Smith and Wesson Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation)

Company↓     Country↓
Accuracy International     UK
Air Weapons Complex (AWC)     Pakistan
Alexander Arms     USA
Antonov     Ukraine
Alliant Techsystems     USA
ArmaLite     USA
Armi Jager     Italy
Armament Technology     Canada
Armscor     Philippines
Arsenal Corporation     Bulgaria
Astra Arms     Switzerland
Kiev Arsenal     Ukraine
ASELSAN     Turkey
Atlas Elektronik     Germany
Avibras     Brazil
BAE Systems     UK
BAE Systems AB     Sweden
Baikal     Russia
Barrett Firearms Manufacturing     USA
Benelli     Italy
Beretta     Italy
Bharat Dynamics     India
Bharat Earth Movers Limited     India
Bharat Electronics Limited     India
Birmingham Small Arms Company     UK
Boeing Defense, Space & Security     USA
Bricett     Turkey
Browning Arms Company     Belgium
Bushmaster Firearms International     USA
Caspian Arms Ltd     USA
Chaiseri Metal & Rubber     Thailand
Charles Daly     USA
Charter Arms     USA
CheyTac     USA
Colt Canada (formerly Diemaco)     Canada
Colt's Manufacturing Company (CMC)     USA
Česká Zbrojovka Strakonice     Czech Republic
Česká Zbrojovka Uherský Brod     Czech Republic
Defense Industries Organization     Iran
Denel     South Africa
Denel Dynamics     South Africa
Detonics     USA
Diehl BGT Defence     Germany
EADS     Europe
EAS     Greece
Elbit Systems     Israel
Embraer     Brazil
Fabrica de Armas Halcon     Argentina
Fabrique Nationale (FN)     Belgium
FAMAE     Chile
Federal Cartridge Company     USA
Fegyver- és Gépgyár (FEG)     Hungary
Finmeccanica     Italy
Floro International Corporation     Philippines
General Dynamics     USA
Nexter (formerly GIAT Industries)     France
Glock Ges.m.b.H.     Austria
Grand Power     Slovakia
H.F.M. Helvetica Firearms Manufacturing     Switzerland
Heavy Industries Taxila     Pakistan
Heckler & Koch (H&K)     Germany
Henry Repeating Arms     USA
Hispano Argentina Fábrica de Automóviles     Argentina
Helibras     Brazil
Hi-Point Firearms     USA
Hindustan Aeronautics Limited     India
Holland & Holland     UK
Howaldtswerke-Deutsche Werft (HDW)     Germany
HS Produkt     Croatia
Hyundai Rotem     South Korea
IBRAP     Brazil
Iran Aviation Industries Organization     Iran
Iran Electronics Industries     Iran
IMBEL     Brazil
INDEP     Portugal
Indumil     Colombia
Innalabs     Russia
Insys     UK
Israel Military Industries (IMI)     Israel
Israel Weapon Industries (IWI)     Israel
Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI)     Israel
Izhevsk Mechanical Works (IZHMASH (ИЖМАШ))     Russia
James Purdey and Sons Ltd.     UK
JP Enterprises Inc     USA
Kahr Arms     USA
Kel-Tec CNC Industries Inc     USA
Kharkiv Morozov Machine Building Design Bureau     Ukraine
Kimber Manufacturing     USA
Knight's Armament Company (KAC)     USA
Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace     Norway
Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW)     Germany
Land Warfare Resources Corporation (LWRC)     USA
Les Baer     USA
LFK     Germany
Lockheed Martin     USA
Franchi     Italy
Lürssen     Germany
Magnum Research Inc. (MRI)     Israel
Mechanical and Chemical Industry Corporation (MKEK)     Turkey
Manroy Engineering Ltd.     UK
Manroy USA     USA
MasterPiece Arms     USA
Mauser     Germany
Marlin Firearms     USA
Matra BAE Dynamics Alenia (MBDA)     France
McBros Rifles     USA
Miguel Enrique Manzo Sal (MEMS)     Argentina
Metal Storm     Australia
Malyshev Factory     Ukraine
Nammo     Norway
Norinco     China
Northrop Corporation     USA
O.F. Mossberg & Sons     USA
Oerlikon Contraves     Switzerland
Olympic Arms     USA
OMI Ordtech Military Industries     Greece
Ordnance Factories Organisation     India
Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC)     Pakistan
Pakistan Ordnance Factories (POF)     Pakistan
Para-Ordnance Manufacturing Inc     Canada
Patria     Finland
Productos Mendoza     Mexico
Pindad     Indonesia
Rafael Advanced Defense Systems (Rafael)     Israel
Remington Arms (Remington)     USA
Rheinmetall AG (Rheinmetall)     Germany
RND Manufacturing     USA
Rock River Arms     USA
Romtehnica     Romania
Rosvoorouzhenie     Russia
Royal Ordnance     UK
RPC Fort (Fort)     Ukraine
Saab     Sweden
SAKO     Finland
Samsung Techwin     South Korea
Savage Arms     USA
Serbu Firearms     USA
Sharps Rifle Manufacturing Company     USA
Smith & Wesson (S&W)     USA
Springfield Armory (former U.S. Army arsenal)     USA
Springfield Armory (modern company)     USA
Sphinx Systems Ltd.     Switzerland
Sterling Armaments Company     UK
Steyr Mannlicher (Steyr)     Austria
ST Engineering     Singapore
STI International     USA
Stoeger Industries     Italy
Strayer Voigt Inc     USA
Sturm, Ruger, & Co. (Ruger)     USA
Swiss Arms
(US subsidiary known as SIG Sauer)     Switzerland
Thai Aviation Industry     Thailand
THOR Global Defense Group     USA
Thompson     USA
Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI)     Turkey
Taser International     USA
Forjas Taurus (Taurus)     Brazil
TEREM     Bulgaria
Textron Systems (Textron)     USA
Thompson Center Arms (Thompson Center)     USA
Thales Group (Thales)     France
ThyssenKrupp     Germany
U.S. Fire Arms Manufacturing Company (U.S. Fire Arms Mfg. Co.; USFA)     USA
U.S. Repeating Arms Company (USRAC)     Belgium
Uralvagonzavod (UVZ)     Russia
Winchester Repeating Arms Company     Belgium
Walther     Germany
Webley & Scott     UK
W. W. Greener     UK
Valmet     Finland
Yuzhnoye Design Bureau     Ukraine
Zastava Arms     Serbia

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posted by u2r2h at 11:35 PM 0 comments