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US lawmakers’ visa request is a publicity stunt: Iran’s Foreign Ministry

Press TV – June 7, 2016

Iranian Foreign Ministry has issued a response to the travel visa requests of three US republican lawmakers who had wanted to travel to Iran to monitor Tehran’s compliance with last year’s historic nuclear agreement.

“In sum, we consider your visa request to have been a publicity stunt and not an appropriate request to visit a sovereign country; and it has, and will continue to be, treated in that spirit,” said a letter published by the office of Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on Tuesday.

In February, three US lawmakers, Mike Pompeo, Lee Zeldin, and Frank LoBiondo, requested to visit Iran in order to inspect its nuclear sites. All three were vigorous opponents of the nuclear deal.

“Despite what you seem to presume, members of the US Congress do not get to dictate the policies of other countries. This clearly applies to Iranian visa policies. Bear in mind that as members of the US Congress you are not a global authority.”

The letter noted that according to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) “is the sole body competent for monitoring” the implementation of the agreement’s nuclear provisions.

“In the modern era, visits to sites or parliamentary or other delegations to monitor elections are made upon invitations and through bilateral agreements between sovereign states or based on reciprocal arrangements, and not upon unilateral demands by self-arrogating individuals or parliamentarians,” the letter read.

“From the time when the manufactured ‘nuclear crisis’ has been settled through the JCPOA, tens of thousands of tourists, academics, investors, students and businesspeople from around the world — including many Americans — have obtained visas and traveled to Iran without any delay or complication.

“But they have been able to do so by making requests consistent with the relevant regulations of the host country and in the appropriate respectful manner and not in the completely inappropriate way you have demanded to visit Iran and interfere in what is of no relevance to your official functions. We doubt that any self-respecting country would grant a visa under such circumstances,” read another part of the letter.

After Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council – the United States, France, Britain, China and Russia – plus Germany started implementing the JCPOA on January 16, all nuclear-related sanctions imposed on Iran by the European Union, the Security Council, and the US were lifted. Iran, in return, has put some limitations on its nuclear activities. The nuclear agreement was signed on July 14, 2015 following nearly a decade of on-and-off intensive talks.

June 7, 2016 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , , | 1 Comment

Why is Europe so reluctant to challenge Israel’s destruction of EU-funded projects?

By Ramona Wadi | MEMO | June 7, 2016

A new report issued this month by the Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor (Euro-Med Monitor) is called, “Squandered Aid: Israel’s repetitive destruction of EU-funded projects in Palestine”. The report imparts the obvious dissonance which characterises such violent cycles towards the end of its analysis. It is unfortunate that the tone employed detracts from the necessity to adopt a different stance with the intention to alter the dismal reality, rather than contemplating a widely-disseminated and accepted tone of resigned futility.

Prior to listing its recommendations, the report states: “The United Nations, the EU and countries that finance reconstruction projects, particularly in Gaza, understandably are concerned that any new investment will prove futile if the underlying causes of the conflict are not addressed.” This remark summarises a quote used in the report by an unnamed European diplomat who admitted that, “All we help to rebuild is going to be destroyed again… We need a fundamental change in the situation so that we do not repeat what continues to happen.” In short, the EU and other donors build; Israel destroys.

A glimpse at the summary provides evidence of Israel’s contemptuous destruction of donor-funded projects; since 2001, approximately $65 million worth of development and humanitarian projects have been destroyed — “squandered” in the report’s parlance — with $23 million out of the total lost during Operation Protective Edge in 2014 alone. In the first three months of 2016, Israel destroyed an average of 165 structures, including private residences and EU-funded projects, every month.

Another fact gleaned from the report is the secrecy shrouding such destruction. Since 2012, media and human rights institutions have been deprived of information regarding destroyed and damaged EU-funded projects, apparently to refrain from causing any embarrassment to the EU and also, according to an unnamed diplomat, “to avoid upsetting Israel”. This is outrageous.

When considering the accelerating amount of damage to EU-funded structures caused by Israel, the recommendations to the EU commission and member states are perfunctory. They are simply more of the usual tactics of seeking to stem violence through reporting, meetings, demands for compensation, penalties imposed on Israel (although none are specified), and the increasing visibility of EU policy regarding the occupied Palestinian territories.

Of course, the EU would rather discuss the ambiguous “underlying causes” as opposed to stating the prime cause loudly and clearly: Israeli colonialism and Europe’s collaboration. The EU’s adherence to the two-state fallacy automatically renders any alleged concern invalid, since Europe is all too obviously urging Israel to complete its colonisation while attempting to appease Palestinians with talk of “an independent Palestinian state”, despite the fact that the only actors involved in such gibberish are Palestinian Authority officials. It is also evident that while Palestinians are clearly in need humanitarian aid to provide even the most basic of needs, the EU has no qualms about squandering money for Israel to indulge in its violent tendencies, given its obvious reluctance to hold the settler-colonial entity to account for the destruction of EU-funded projects.

The EU has created a parody out of humanitarian assistance, and Israel has participated willingly, secure in its knowledge that the impunity it has constructed from within its warped agenda has now been assimilated and endorsed at an international level. Meanwhile, further reports of spiteful demolitions and damage will continue to occur because the EU, the UN and countries in their individual capacity are unwilling, as a result of complicity, to remove Israel’s colonial entity from occupied Palestine.

June 7, 2016 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular, Video | , , , , | 1 Comment

Hillary’s Pathetic Cover-Up of TPP Support

Clinton allies are stonewalling emails that expose her trade hypocrisy

By Ashley Pratte | Polizette | June 7, 2016

Drip, drip, drip — the spigot of scandal from Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton’s emails continues, this time with a cover-up of her communications on the controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement.

Last July, the International Business Times requested any TPP-related correspondence between Hillary Clinton and the U.S. Trade Representative’s office — and lo and behold, the State Department just announced it will be delaying the request until November. The post-election timing was not lost on anyone paying attention.

Trade has become one of the pivotal issues of the 2016 election. Both presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump and Sen. Bernie Sanders (a persistent pain in Clinton’s side) slammed the proposed TPP, capitalizing on voter frustration with massive job losses stemming from lopsided trade deals.

Clinton, finger ever in the political wind, once praised the massive 12-nation agreement pushed by President Obama and Republicans in Congress, only to flip-flop to opposing the bargain after losing political ground to Sanders.

While Clinton was secretary of state she she praised the negotiations, saying that an agreement with the nations of the TPP would help create new jobs and opportunities and at one point even called it the “gold standard” in trade agreements.

It’s no wonder that with all of her flip-flopping on TPP, she and her allies at the State Department wouldn’t want the public to see her email correspondence on the deal.

Adding to the potential damage for Clinton contained in her TPP emails is the fact she has gone so far as to deny any involvement in the negotiations. “I did not work on the TPP,” Clinton said in July 2015. “That was the responsibility of the United States Trade Representative. I never had any direct responsibility for the negotiations at all.” But even if she did not engage in the negotiations directly, the State Department would have had a seat at the table for the trade negotiations, and she had correspondence with the U.S. Trade Representative.

Clinton’s desperate attempts to distance herself from the TPP she once enthusiastically supported will likely further hamper her efforts to stave off attacks from Trump and Sanders on the unpopular trade bargain. The State Department’s role in covering her tracks until after the election stinks of a Clinton-esque lack of transparency — and adds more complexity to her ongoing email scandal.

June 7, 2016 Posted by | Deception, Economics | , , | 1 Comment

US Refused to Discuss Missile Defense with Russia

By Alex GORKA | Strategic Culture Foundation | 07.06.2016

The United States has refused Russian offers to discuss Washington’s missile defense program, said Russian Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov. He made this statement at the Shangri-La Dialogue 15th Asia Security Summit on June 5. “We have offered them cooperation many times and found ways we could solve the situation… But we did not manage to convince them to continue dialogue on this issue. As I understand it, now is not the best time for them to hold consultations,” Antonov stated.

The official emphasized that the US-backed project was creating problems for both Russia and China, complaining that Moscow had many times called on the United States to rethink its plans. “It is very dangerous when one country secures its own security at the expense of other countries’ security,” he added.

Mr Antonov has raised a burning issue that negatively affects the security agenda. Actually, Russia has put forward a number of proposals related to cooperation with the US in the field of missile defense making conditional the right of joint decision over the configuration and parameters of the system, as well as international legal guarantees that the system will not undermine Russia’s nuclear potential. It has also come up with the initiative on introduction of sectoral missile defense, in which the Russian armed forces would take responsibility for the defence of NATO’s eastern region.

All these proposals have been rejected.

The ballistic missile defense (BMD) is a step to a new arms race, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on May 13, vowing to adjust budget spending to neutralize “emerging threats” to Russia. “Until now, those taking such decisions have lived in calm, fairly well-off and in safety. Now, as these elements of ballistic missile defense are deployed, we are forced to think how to neutralize emerging threats to the Russian Federation,” he stated.

The President emphasized that Russia would not be drawn into an arms race, but would continue re-arming its army and navy and spend the approved funds in a way that would uphold the current strategic balance of forces.

The United States abandoned the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty (ABM) in 2002 to greatly complicate further arms control talks. The document had been the cornerstone of the strategic weapon limitation process for the previous thirty years. The US has created a problem of BMD sites located in Romania (already operational) and Poland (to enter service in 2018) – all in the vicinity of Russian border. The United States is deploying BMD elements in Japan. The plans to deploy the THAAD in South Korea have been announced recently.

Despite Russian objections, Washington has refused to limit its BMD effort either by creating a joint system or by accepting legally binding commitments to demonstrate that the system will not be aimed at Russia. The BMD deployment is dashing the hopes for achieving progress in nuclear disarmament talks.

Russian and US views differ substantially on the issue of compliance with arms control and nuclear arms reduction agreements. The crisis of arms control is both multifaceted and comprehensive. It’s not the BMD only.

The US has not ratified the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) almost two decades after negotiations concluded. For the foreseeable future, there is little prospect of the United States accepting new obligations.

It is highly unlikely that Russia and the United States would agree to further nuclear cuts below the ceilings agreed upon in the START-3 treaty.

Substrategic weapons are another serious problem with no prospect for a solution in the foreseeable future. There is a slight chance they would be included into the bilateral arms control agenda. Russia considers US forward-based tactical nuclear weapons deployed in Europe as an addition to the American strategic arsenal that is capable of striking deep into Russian territory. Moscow has, therefore, demanded that the United States withdraw these weapons (about 200 air-dropped gravity bombs in the process of being upgraded) from Europe as a precondition to any possible discussions on the issue. This an extremely complicated aspect of arms control kept out of nuclear security discourse.

Furthermore, the United States enjoys a lead in long-range offensive non-nuclear weapons.

New conventional long-range high-precision systems significantly complicate estimates of strategic balance and calculations of the sufficiency of deterrent forces. They will create even greater problems for arms control negotiations and could even jeopardize the INF Treaty and New START (START-3).

Add to it the expansion of NATO, the worldwide and regional destabilization, the buildup of military infrastructure around Russia, the implementation of the Prompt Global Strike concept and the militarization of outer space.

In late March, Washington made a decision to deploy an armored brigade in Europe starting from 2017 fiscal year adding to the forces deployed on rotational principle for increased number of exercises and storage of pre-positioned equipment for would-be reinforcements.

On June 5, first deputy chairman of the Russian Federation Council’s Defense and Security Committee Franz Klinzewitsch said that NATO prepares a base for a global strike against Russia by deploying troops on the former Soviet military bases in Europe. “They have many serious plans within the concept of the so-called global strike. NATO restores our old Soviet bases in Baltic, Romania, Poland, stations people there,” the lawmaker pointed out.

Two key agreements between Russia and the United States to limit offensive nuclear weapons – the 2010 New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START-3) and the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty – are still in force, but their future is in doubt. For instance, the US has recently accused Russia of violating the INF.

The statements have so far failed to specify which exactly weapons system allegedly violates the treaty’s provisions.

At the same time, the deployment in Romania and Poland of Mk-41 Aegis Ashore launchers capable of firing ground-launched cruise missiles (GLCMs) is an outright violation of the INF.

The United States has blatantly violated the uranium disposal deal – another major arms control agreement.

Virtually all negotiations on arms control have been stalled with existing treaties eroded. It was one of the reasons President Putin skipped the Washington Nuclear Summit in March.

The global prospects for the future are dim. Third countries refuse to join the process of nuclear disarmament without further progress on nuclear arms reductions by Russia and the US.

Since George Bush Jr. days, the United States has been taking one decision after another to undermine the arms control regime that has served as a pillar of international security for dozens of years. For the foreseeable future, there is little prospect of the US accepting new obligations. Its credibility as a reliable partner is shaken.

For over half a century since the Partial Nuclear Test Ban Treaty in 1963, the international binding framework has limited the nuclear potentials. This period of history appears to be nearing its end. Nearly all negotiations on nuclear arms reduction have come to a stop. With the Cold War ended over a quarter of a century ago, the whole arms control process is on the verge of disintegration. The continuation of US missile defense efforts leads to the quagmire of uncontrolled arms race. The refusal of the US to discuss the BMD plans confirms this fact.

June 7, 2016 Posted by | Militarism, Timeless or most popular | , , | Leave a comment

When Phoenix Came to Thanh Phong: Bob Kerrey and War Crimes as Policy in Vietnam

By Douglas Valentine | CounterPunch | May 2001

By now everybody knows that former Senator Bob Kerrey led a seven-member team of Navy Seals into Thanh Phong village in February 1969, and murdered in cold blood more than a dozen women and children.

What hardly anyone knows, and what no one in the press is talking about (although many of them know), is that Kerrey was on a CIA mission, and its specific purpose was to destroy that village of civilian peasants. It was illegal, premeditated mass murder and it was a war crime.

And it’s time to hold the CIA responsible. It’s time for a war crimes tribunal to examine the CIA’s illegal activities during and since the Vietnam War.

War Crimes As Policy

War crimes were a central part of CIA strategy for fighting the Vietnam War. The strategy was known as Contre Coup, and it was the manifestation of a belief that the war was essentially political, not military, in nature. The CIA theorized that it was being fought by opposing ideological factions, each one amounting to about five percent of the total population, while the remaining ninety percent was uncommitted and wanted the war to go away.

According to the CIA’s mythology, on one side were communist insurgents, supported by comrades in Hanoi, Moscow and Peking. The communists fought for land reform, to rid Vietnam of foreign intervention, and to unite the north and south. The other faction was composed of capitalists, often Catholics relocated from North Vietnam in 1954 by the CIA. This faction was fighting to keep South Vietnam an independent nation, operating under the direction of quiet Americans.

Caught in the crossfire was the silent majority. The object shared by both factions was to win these undecided voters over to its side.

Contre Coup was the CIA’s response to the realization that the Communists were winning the war for the hearts and minds of the people. It also was a response to the belief that they were winning through the use of psychological warfare, specifically, selective terror ? the murder and mutilation of specific government officials.

In December 1963, Peer DeSilva arrived in Saigon as the CIA’s station chief. He claims to have been shocked by what he saw. In his autobiography, SubRosa, DeSilva describes how the VC had “impaled a young boy, a village chief, and his pregnant wife on sharp poles. To make sure this horrible sight would remain with the villagers, one of the terror squad used his machete to disembowel the woman, spilling he fetus onto the ground.”

“The Vietcong,” DeSilva said, “were monstrous in the application of torture and murder to achieve the political and psychological impact they wanted.”

But the methodology was successful and had tremendous intelligence potential, so DeSilva authorized the creation of small “counter-terror teams,” designed “to bring danger and death to the Vietcong functionaries themselves, especially in areas where they felt secure.”

How Counter-Terror Worked In Vietnam

Thanh Phong village was one of those areas where Vietcong functionaries felt secure. It was located in Kien Hoa Province, along the Mekong Delta. One of Vietnam’s most densely populated provinces, Kien Hoa was precariously close to Saigon, and is criss-crossed with waterways and rice paddies. It was an important rice production area for the insurgents as well as the Government of Vietnam, and thus was one of the eight most heavily infiltrated provinces in Vietnam. The estimated 4700 VC functionaries in Kien Hoa accounted for more than five percent of the insurgency’s total leadership. Operation Speedy Express, a Ninth Infantry sweep through Kien Hoa in the first six months of 1969, killed an estimated 11,000 civilians-supposedly VC sympathizers.

These functionaries formed what the CIA called the Vietcong Infrastructure (VCI). The VCI consisted of members of the People’s Revolutionary Party, the National Liberation Front, and other Communist outfits like the Women’s and Student’s Liberation Associations. Its members were politicians and administrators managing committees for business, communications, security, intelligence, and military affairs. Among their main functions were the collection of taxes, the recruitment of young men and women into the insurgency, and the selective assassination of GVN officials.

As the CIA was well aware, Ho Chi Minh boasted that with two cadre in every hamlet, he could win the war, no matter how many soldiers the Americans threw at him.

So the CIA adopted Ho’s strategy-but on a grander and bloodier scale. The object of Contre Coup was to identify and terrorize each and every individual VCI and his/her family, friends and fellow villagers. To this end the CIA in 1964 launched a massive intelligence operation called the Provincial Interrogation Center Program. The CIA (employing the US company Pacific Architects and Engineers) built an interrogation center in each of South Vietnam’s 44 provinces. Staffed by members of the brutal Special Police, who ran extensive informant networks, and advised by CIA officers, the purpose of the PICs was to identify, through the systematic “interrogation” (read torture) of VCI suspects, the membership of the VCI at every level of its organization; from its elusive headquarters somewhere along the Cambodian border, through the region, city, province, district, village and hamlet committees.

The “indispensable link” in the VCI was the District Party Secretary–the same individual Bob Kerrey’s Seal team was out to assassinate in its mission in Thanh Phong.

Frankenstein’s Monster

Initially the CIA had trouble finding people who were willing to murder and mutilate, so the Agency’s original “counter-terror teams” were composed of ex-convicts, VC defectors, Chinese Nungs, Cambodians, Montagnards, and mercenaries. In a February 1970 article written for True Magazine, titled “The CIA’s Hired Killers,” Georgie-Anne Geyer compared “our boys” to “their boys” with the qualification that, “Their boys did it for faith; our boys did it for money.”

The other big problem was security. The VC had infiltrated nearly every facet of the GVN-even the CIA’s unilateral counter-terror program. So in an attempt to bring greater effectiveness to its secret war, the CIA started employing Navy Seals, US Army Special Forces, Force Recon Marines, and other highly trained Americans who, like Bob Kerrey, were “motivationally indoctrinated” by the military and turned into killing machines with all the social inhibitions and moral compunctions of a Timothy McVeigh. Except they were secure in the knowledge that what they were doing was, if not legal or moral, fraught with Old Testament-style justice, rationalizing that the Viet Cong did it first.

Eventually the irrepressible Americans added their own improvements. In his autobiography Soldier, Anthony Herbert describes arriving in Saigon in 1965, reporting to the CIA’s Special Operations Group, and being asked to join a top-secret psywar program. What the CIA wanted Herbert to do, “was to take charge of execution teams that wiped out entire families.”

By 1967, killing entire families had become an integral facet of the CIA’s counter-terror program. Robert Slater was the chief of the CIA’s Province Interrogation Center Program from June 1967 through 1969. In a March 1970 thesis for the Defense Intelligence School, titled “The History, Organization and Modus Operandi of the Viet Cong Infrastructure,” Slater wrote, “the District Party Secretary usually does not sleep in the same house or even hamlet where his family lived, to preclude any injury to his family during assassination attempts.”

But, Slater added, “the Allies have frequently found out where the District Party Secretaries live and raided their homes: in an ensuing fire fight the secretary’s wife and children have been killed and injured.”

This is the intellectual context in which the Kerrey atrocity took place. This CIA strategy of committing war crimes for psychological reasons? to terrorize the enemy’s supporters into submission–also is what differentiates Kerrey’s atrocity, in legal terms, from other popular methods of mass murdering civilians, such as bombs from the sky, or economic boycotts.

Yes, the CIA has a global, illegal strategy of terrorizing people, although in typical CIA lexicon it’s called “anti-terrorism.”

When you’re waging illegal warfare, language is every bit as important as weaponry and the will to kill. As George Orwell or Noam Chomsky might explain, when you’re deliberately killing innocent women and children, half the court-of-public-opinion battle is making it sound legal.

Three Old Vietnam Hands in particular stand out as examples of this incestuous relationship. Neil Sheehan, CIA-nik and author of the aptly titled Bright Shining Lie, recently confessed that in 1966 he saw US soldiers massacre as many as 600 Vietnamese civilians in five fishing villages. He’d been in Vietnam for three years by then, but it didn’t occur to him that he had discovered a war crime. Now he realizes that the war crimes issue was always present, but still no mention of his friends in the CIA.

Former New York Times reporter and author of The Best and The Brightest, David Halberstam, defended Kerrey on behalf of the media establishment at the New School campus the week after the story broke. Halberstam described the region around Thanh Phong as “the purest bandit country,” adding that “by 1969 everyone who lived there would have been third-generation Vietcong.” Which is CIA revisionism at its sickest.

Finally there’s New York Times reporter James Lemoyne. Why did he never write any articles linking the CIA to war crimes in Vietnam–perhaps because his brother Charles, a Navy officer, was in charge of the CIA’s counter-terror teams in the Delta in 1968.

Phoenix Comes To Thanh Phong

The CIA launched its Phoenix Program in June 1967, after 13 years of tinkering with several experimental counter-terror and psywar programs, and building its network of secret interrogation centers. The stated policy was to replace the bludgeon of indiscriminate bombings and military search and destroy operations–which had alienated the people from the Government of Vietnam–with the scalpel of assassinations of selected members of the Viet Cong Infrastructure.

A typical Phoenix operation began in a Province Interrogation Center where a suspected member of the VCI was brought for questioning. After a few days or weeks or months undergoing various forms of torture, the VCI suspect would die or give the name and location of his VCI comrades and superiors. That information would be sent from the Interrogation Center to the local Phoenix office, which was staffed by Special Branch and Vietnamese military officers under the supervision of CIA officers. Depending on the suspected importance of the targeted VCI, the Phoenix people would then dispatch one of the various action arms available to it, including Seal teams like the one Bob Kerrey led into Thanh Phong.

In February 1969, the Phoenix Program was still under CIA control. But because Kien Hoa Province was so important, and because the VCI’s District Party Secretary was supposedly in Thanh Phong, the CIA decided to handle this particular assassination and mass murder mission without involving the local Vietnamese. So instead of dispensing the local counter-terror team, the CIA sent Kerrey’s Raiders.

And that, very simply, is how it happened. Kerrey and crew admittedly went to Thanh Phong to kill the District Party Secretary, and anyone else who got in the way, including his family and all their friends.

Phoenix Comes Home To Roost

By 1969 the CIA, through Phoenix, was targeting individual VCI and their families all across Vietnam. Over 20,000 people were assassinated by the end of the year and hundreds of thousands had been tortured in Province Interrogation Centers.

On 20 June 1969, the Lower House of the Vietnamese Congress held hearings about abuses in the Phoenix VCI elimination program. Eighty-six Deputies signed a petition calling for its immediate termination. Among the charges: Special Police knowingly arrested innocent people for the purpose of extortion; people were detained for as long as eight months before being tried; torture was commonplace. Noting that it was illegal to do so, several deputies protested instances in which American troops detained or murdered suspects without Vietnamese authority. Others complained that village chiefs were not consulted before raids, such as the one on Thanh Phong.

After an investigation in 1970, four Congresspersons concluded that the CIA’s Phoenix Program violated international law. “The people of these United States,” they jointly stated, “have deliberately imposed upon the Vietnamese people a system of justice which admittedly denies due process of law,” and that in doing so, “we appear to have violated the 1949 Geneva Convention for the protection of civilian people.”

During the hearings, U.S. Representative Ogden Reid said, “if the Union had had a Phoenix program during the Civil War, its targets would have been civilians like Jefferson Davis or the mayor of Macon, Georgia.”

But the American establishment and media denied it then, and continue to deny it until today, because Phoenix was a genocidal program — and the CIA officials, members of the media who were complicit through their silence, and the red-blooded American boys who carried it out, are all war criminals. As Michael Ratner a lawyer at the Center for Constitutional Rights told CounterPunch: “Kerrey should be tried as a war criminal. His actions on the night of February 24-25, 1969 when the seven man Navy Seal unit which he headed killed approximately twenty unarmed Vietnamese civilians, eighteen of whom were women and children was a war crime. Like those who murdered at My Lai, he too should be brought into the dock and tried for his crimes.”

Phoenix, alas, also was fiendishly effective and became a template for future CIA operations. Developed in Vietnam and perfected with the death squads and media blackout of Afghanistan and El Salvador, it is now employed by the CIA around the world: in Colombia, in Kosovo, in Ireland with the British MI6, and in Israel with its other kindred spirit, the Mossad.

The paymasters at the Pentagon will keep cranking out billion dollar missile defense shields and other Bush league boondoggles. But when it comes to making the world safe for international capitalism, the political trick is being more of a homicidal maniac, and more cost effective, than the terrorists.

Incredibly, Phoenix has become fashionable, it has acquired a kind of political cachet. Governor Jesse Ventura claims to have been a Navy Seal and to have “hunted man.” Fanatical right-wing US Representative Bob Barr, one of the Republican impeachment clique, has introduced legislation to “re-legalize” assassinations. David Hackworth, representing the military establishment, defended Kerrey by saying “there were thousands of such atrocities,” and that in 1969 his own unit committed “at least a dozen such horrors.” Jack Valenti, representing the business establishment and its financial stake in the issue, defended Kerrey in the LA Times, saying, “all the normalities (sic) of a social contract are abandoned,” in war.


A famous Phoenix operation, known as the My Lai Massacre, was proceeding along smoothly, with a grand total of 504 Vietnamese women and children killed, when a soldier named Hugh Thompson in a helicopter gunship saw what was happening. Risking his life to preserve that “social contract,” Thomson landed his helicopter between the mass murderers and their victims, turned his machine guns on his fellow Americans, and brought the carnage to a halt.

Same with screenwriter and journalist Bill Broyles, Vietnam veteran, and author of Brothers in Arms, an excellent book about the Vietnam War. Broyles turned in a bunch of his fellow Marines for killing civilians.

If Thompson and Broyles were capable of taking individual responsibility, everyone is. And many did.

Phoenix Reborn

There is no doubt that Bob Kerrey committed a war crime. As he admits, he went to Vietnam with a knife clenched between his teeth and did what he was trained to do ? kidnap, assassinate and mass murder civilians. But there was no point to his atrocity as he soon learned, no controlling legal authority. He became a conflicted individual. He remembers that they killed women and children. But he thinks they came under fire first, before they panicked and started shooting back. The fog of war clouds his memory

But there isn’t that much to forget. Thanh Phong was Kerrey’s first mission, and on his second mission a grenade blew off his foot, abruptly ending his military career.

Plus which there are plenty of other people to remind Kerrey of what happened, if anyone will listen. There’s Gerhard Klann, the Seal who disputes Kerrey’s account, and two Vietnamese survivors of the raid, Pham Tri Lanh and Bui Thi Luam, both of whom corroborate Klann’s account, as does a veteran Viet Cong soldier, Tran Van Rung.

As CBS News was careful to point out, the Vietnamese were former VC and thus hostile witnesses and because there were slight inconsistencies in their stories, they could not be believed. Klann became the target of Kerrey’s pr machine, which dismissed as an alcoholic with a chip on his shoulder.

Then there is John DeCamp. An army captain in Vietnam, DeCamp worked for the organization under CIA executive William Colby that ostensibly managed Phoenix after the CIA let it go in June 1969. DeCamp was elected to the Nebraska State Senate and served until 1990. A Republican, he claims that Kerrey led an anti-war march on the Nebraska state capitol in May 1971. DeCamp claims that Kerrey put a medal, possibly his bronze star, in a mock coffin, and said, “Viet Cong or North Vietnamese troops are angelic compared with the ruthless Americans.”

Kerrey claims he was in Peru visiting his brother that day. But he definitely accepted his Medal of Honor from Richard Nixon on 14 May 1970, a mere ten days after the Ohio National guard killed four student protestors at Kent State. With that badge of honor pinned on his chest, Kerrey began walking the gilded road to success. Elected Governor of Nebraska in November 1982, he started dating Deborah Winger, became a celebrity hero, was elected to the US Senate, became vice-chair of Senate Committee on Intelligence, and in 1990 staged a run for president. One of the most highly regarded politicians in America, he showered self-righteous criticism on draft dodger Bill Clinton’s penchant for lying.

Bob Kerrey is a symbol of what it means to be an American, and the patriots have rallied to his defense. And yet Kerrey accepted a bronze star under false pretenses, and as John DeCamp suggests, he may have been fragged by his fellow Seals. For this, he received the Medal of Honor.

John DeCamp calls Bob Kerrey “emotionally disturbed” as a result of his Vietnam experience.

And Kerrey’s behavior has been pathetic. In order to protect himself and his CIA patrons from being tried as a war criminals, Bob Kerrey has become a pathological liar too. Kerrey says his actions at Than Phong were an atrocity, but not a war crime. He says he feels remorse, but not guilt. In fact, he has continually rehabbed his position on the war itself-moving from an opponent to more recently an enthusiast. In a 1999 column in the Washington Post, for example, Kerrey said he had come to view that Vietnam was a “just war. “Was the war worth the effort and sacrifice, or was it a mistake?” Kerrey wrote. “When I came home in 1969 and for many years afterward, I did not believe it was worth it. Today, with the passage of time and the experience of seeing both the benefits of freedom won by our sacrifice and the human destruction done by dictatorships, I believe the cause was just and the sacrifice not in vain.” Then at the Democratic Party Convention in Los Angeles last summer Kerrey lectured the delegates that they shouldn’t be ashamed of the war and that they should treat Vietnam veterans as war heroes: “I believe I speak for Max Baucus and every person who has ever served when I say I never felt more free than when I wore the uniform of our country. This country – this party – must remember.” Free? Free to murder women and children. Is this a consciousness of guilt or immunity?

CBS News also participated in constructing a curtain of lies. As does every other official government or media outlet that knows about the CIA’s Phoenix Program, which continues to exist and operate worldwide today, but fails to mention it.


Because if the name of one targeted Viet Cong cadre can be obtained, then all the names can be obtained, and then a war crimes trial becomes imperative. And that’s the last thing the Establishment will allow to happen.

Average Americans, however, consider themselves a nation ruled by laws and an ethic of fair play, and with the Kerry confession comes an opportunity for America to redefine itself in more realistic terms. The discrepancies in his story beg investigation. He says he was never briefed on the rules of engagement. But a “pocket card” with the Laws of Land Warfare was given to each member of the US Armed Forces in Vietnam.

Does it matter that Kerrey would lie about this? Yes. General Bruce Palmer, commander of the same Ninth Division that devastated Kien Koa Province in 1969, objected to the “involuntary assignment” of American soldiers to Phoenix. He did not believe that “people in uniform, who are pledged to abide by the Geneva Conventions, should be put in the position of having to break those laws of warfare.”

It was the CIA that forced soldiers like Kerrey into Phoenix operations, and the hidden hand of the CIA lingers over his war crime. Kerrey even uses the same rationale offered by CIA officer DeSilva. According to Kerrey, “the Viet Cong were a thousand per cent more ruthless than” the Seals or U.S. Army.

But the Geneva Conventions, customary international law and the Uniform Code of Military Justice all prohibit the killing of noncombatant civilians. The alleged brutality of others is no justification. By saying it is, Kerrey implicates the people who generated that rationale: the CIA. That is why there is a moral imperative to scrutinize the Phoenix Program and the CIA officers who created it, the people who participated in it, and the journalists who covered it up ? to expose the dark side of our national psyche, the part that allows us to employ terror to assure our world dominance.

To accomplish this there must be a war crimes tribunal. This won’t be easy. The US government has gone to great lengths to shield itself from such legal scrutiny, at the same it selectively manipulates international institutions, such as the UN, to go after people like Slobodan Milosevic.

According to human rights lawyer Michael Ratner the legal avenues for bringing Kerrey and his cohorts to justice are quite limited. A civil suit could be lodged against Kerrey by the families of the victims brought in the United States under the Alien Tort Claims Act. “These are the kinds of cases I did against Gramajo, Pangaitan (Timor),” Ratner told us. “The main problem here is that it is doubtful the Vietnamese would sue a liberal when they are dying to better relations with the US. I would do this case if could get plaintiffs–so far no luck.” According to Ratner, there is no statute of limitations problem as it is newly discovered evidence and there is a stron argument particularly in the criminal context that there is no statute of limitations for war crimes.

But criminal cases in the US present a difficult, if not impossible, prospect. Now that Kerrey is discharged from the Navy, the military courts, which went after Lt. Calley for the My Lai massacre, has no jurisdiction over him. “As to criminal case in the US–my pretty answer is no,” says Ratner. “The US first passed a war crimes statute (18 USC sec. 2441 War Crimes) in 1996–that statute makes what Kerrey did a war crime punishable by death of life imprisonment–but it was passed after the crime and criminal statutes are not retroactive.” In 1988, Congress enacted a statute against genocide, which was might apply to Kerrey’s actions, but it to can’t be applied retroactively. Generally at the time of Kerrey’s acts in Vietnam, US criminal law did not extend to what US citizens did overseas unless they were military.

[As a senator, Kerrey, it should be noted, voted for the war crimes law, thus opening the opportunity for others to be prosecuted for crimes similar to those he that committed but is shielded from.]

The United Nations is a possibility, but a long shot. They could establish an ad hoc tribunal such as it did with the Rwanda ICTR and Yugoslavia ICTY. “This would require action by UN Security council could do it, but what are the chances?” says Ratner. “There is still the prospect for a US veto What that really points out is how those tribunals are bent toward what the US and West want.”

Prosecution in Vietnam and or another country and extradition is also a possibility. It can be argued that war crimes are crimes over which there is universal jurisdiction–in fact that is obligation of countries-under Geneva Convention of 1948–to seek out and prosecute war criminals. “Universal jurisdiction does not require the presence of the defendant–he can be indicted and tried in some countries in absentia–or his extradition can be requested”, says Ratner. “Some countries may have statutes permitting this. Kerrey should check his travel plans and hire a good lawyer before he gets on a plane. He can use Kissinger’s lawyer.”


June 7, 2016 Posted by | Deception, False Flag Terrorism, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , , | Leave a comment

Palestinian children behind bars: 14-year-old sentenced to over 6 years, visits denied, exorbitant fines

Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network – June 7, 2016

muawiya-alqamPalestinian children continue to be targeted for collective punishment and harsh sentences, as 14-year-old Muawiya Alqam was sentenced to six and one-half years in Israeli occupation prisons and fined 26,000 NIS (approximately $6,750).

Ma’an News reported that the sentence came in a plea bargain that will be officially pronounced at a sentencing in July. Palestinian children ages 14 and up are ostensibly limited to a 6-month maximum sentence; however, this limitation no longer applies for any conviction for which the maximum sentence is greater than five years, which includes throwing stones, one of the most common charges raised against Palestinian children. Israeli officials are frequently thought to postpone trials until children reach the age of 14, as in the case of Ahmad Manasrah.

Muawiya’s cousin, Ali Alqam, 12, is currently serving a 1 year sentence in a juvenile detention center; Ali was shot at least three times and underwent surgery to remove a bullet from his stomach. Muawiya and Ali were accused of stabbing and “moderately wounding” an Israeli security guard on the Jerusalem Light Rail.

Muawiya and Ali are among over 330 Palestinian children imprisoned by Israeli occupation forces, according to May 2016 statistics compiled by Palestinian organizations. Also in May 2016, Israeli occupation courts imposed fines of 88,000 NIS (Approximately $22,000 USD) on Palestinian children in Ofer prison. The Palestinian Prisoners’ Society reported that 48 children were convicted in May, with sentences ranging between three months and 30 months. There are 183 Palestinian children held in Ofer prison, 81 in Megiddo prison, and an additional number in multiple detention and interrogation centers, home detention centers, and juvenile detention facilities.

28 children in Ofer have also been denied family visits, according to the Palestinian Prisoners’ Society – 14 have been denied visits since their arrest, while 14 families have had their permits suddenly withdrawn or cancelled when they arrive at the checkpoint for visitation, on the grounds of “security.”

12-year-old Shadi Farrah, another of the youngest Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, was arrested along with 13-year-old Ahmad Zaatari on 30 December when they were accused of having knives in their possession after they were stopped and searched by Israeli police. Despite never touching or attempting to touch a single person, both are accused of possession of a knife with intent to kill, reports the International Solidarity Movement . The boys were interrogated in Moskobiya interrogation center without their lawyers or parents. They have made 11 appearances in court and are held in a juvenile detention center. Shadi’s letter to his mother, in which he says “Mum, I want you to keep your head up high like a palm tree that cannot be moved by the wind or even an earthquake… Don’t be sad about what’s happened, mum. Today I stand in front of the mirror to shed my faults and I can see my good side,” has been widely distributed.

Shadi’s mother is only able to visit monthly due to the approximately 800-shekel ($213 USD) cost to visit the distant detention center for the day, and according to the ISM, they have been denied assistance from the ICRC because Shadi is detained in a juvenile detention center rather than a prison. This comes as the ICRC has announced plans to reduce family visits that it organizes from the West Bank to Palestinian adult male prisoners held inside the Israeli state, from twice to once monthly, denying not only the prisoners but also their families ongoing connection and relationships. The Palestinian prisoners’ movement has broadly denounced the ICRC for this action; Samidoun is urging international action to restore family visits and protest “budget cuts” taking place at the cost of some of the most marginalized and vulnerable people in Palestine.

June 7, 2016 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Subjugation - Torture | , , , , | 1 Comment

Israel behind murders of Bangladesh bloggers, minister suggests

Press TV – June 7, 2016

Bangladesh’s home minister says Israel is spearheading an “international conspiracy” behind the serial killings of secular intellectuals and religious minorities in the Asian country.

Asaduzzaman Khan said on Monday that there was evidence of an “international conspiracy” against the Muslim-majority country, which backs the Palestinian cause and has no diplomatic ties with Tel Aviv.

“Bangladesh has become the target of an international conspiracy. And a foreign intelligence agency has joined the conspiracy,” Khan said.

He touched upon a meeting between an opposition politician and an Israeli intelligence agent as evidence of the Israeli involvement in the murders.

“You must have noticed that an Israeli intelligence agent had a meeting with a politician, it does not need to be verified further, all [Bangladeshis] know about it.”

Opposition MP Aslam Chowdhury was recently arrested and accused of sedition after his photographs with Israeli politician Mendi Safadi in India were published.

Chowdhury has denied the meeting and said he was on a business trip to India.

Reacting to Khan’s remarks, Emmanuel Nahshon, a spokesman of the Israeli Ministry for Foreign Affairs, described the accusation as “utter drivel.”

Serial murders

Khan’s remarks came on the same day that police found the dead body of Ananda Gopal Ganguly, 70-year-old Hindu priest, near his home in a village of western Jhenidah District.

According to police, the victim had his head nearly severed from his body.

A day earlier, a senior police officer’s wife, Mahmuda Aktar, had also been stabbed and shot dead in front of her six-year-old son in the city of Chittagong.

Also on Sunday, Sunil Gomes, a Christian grocer, was hacked to death in the village of Bonpara in an attack claimed by the Daesh terrorist group.

Police say more than 40 people have been killed since January 2015 in the spate of killings.

Most of the attacks against the secular bloggers, academics and members of religious minorities, including Shia Muslims, Hindus and Christians, were claimed by Daesh or al-Qaeda-linked groups.

However, Dhaka has disputed the claims and blamed opposition parties or local militant groups for the killings.

Israel is believed to be among the staunch supporters of the Takfiri outfits operating against the government in Syria over the past five years.

June 7, 2016 Posted by | Deception, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, False Flag Terrorism | , , , , | Leave a comment

FBI in new push to probe web browser history – report

RT | June 7, 2016

The FBI hopes to amend surveillance laws as early as this year, giving the agency explicit authority to access a personal Internet browser history by simply issuing an administrative “national security letter,” the Washington Post reports.

The new legislation being readied would empower the FBI to obtain “electronic communication transactional records” bypassing judges’ approval with the help of a “national security letter” (NSL) which could be issued by the special agent in charge of a bureau field office, the paper says.

The FBI chief made a specific point that gaining this access through changing legislation is topping agency’s priorities for the year 2016, since the inability to get the necessary data “affects our work in a very, very big and practical way,” James Comey told the Senate Intelligence Committee in February.

The Obama administration already tried to adopt a similar amendment some six years ago, but had to retreat after fierce opposition from the IT industry and privacy advocates.

Incidentally, Comey believes the current state of things is thanks to a “scrivener’s error” in the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, enabling internet providers and other technical companies to refuse providing certain personal information to the agency, citing infringement of American citizens’ privacy.

The ECPA is “needlessly hamstringing our counterintelligence and counterterrorism efforts,” Comey stressed.

The FBI also insists that a broader update of the ECPA should set electronic communication transactional records equal to telephone billing records.

The personal web ‘transactional records’ in question will allegedly include protocol addresses and the exact time a person spends on a web resource, but not content like search queries and email texts.

A coalition of privacy and civil society groups united with internet industry organizations to oppose the legal initiative, warning that the amendment would “dramatically expand the ability of the FBI to get sensitive information about users’ online activities without oversight.”

Security letters requesting data usually come with a gag order forbidding the internet providers from making the fact of the FBI request public.

The FBI has issued over 300,000 such requests within the past 10 years and in most cases they were accompanied by gag orders, estimated American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) legislative counsel Neema Singh Guliani.

“That’s the perfect storm of more information gathered, less transparency and no accountability,” Guliani said.

June 7, 2016 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , | 2 Comments

Propagandists try to censor discussion on Refugee Crisis

Mark Boothroyd f1450

By Rick Sterling | American Herald Tribune | June 7, 2016

Syria Solidarity Movement is an international network in solidarity with the Syrian people and their struggle to retain a secular, independent state.

Unfortunately, there is an organization in the UK called “Syria Solidarity UK” (SSUK). The similarity in names has caused some confusion, especially because their “solidarity” is with the “Syrian Revolution”.  In reality, this ‘revolution’ consists of long exiled Syrians with heavy Muslim Brotherhood influence, some daydreaming Trotskyists, Western or Gulf or Turkish supported political agents and tens of thousands of terrorists and mercenaries supplied, paid, assisted and promoted by Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Israel, Turkey, USA, France, UK.

The genuine and positive forces seeking change in Syria disappeared long ago. James Foley documented the reality in Syria after his illusions were dispelled in Fall 2012. So did the native Aleppan known as Edward Dark. Initially he and his friends supported the uprising but then realized what it meant. While there is an array of takfiri factions, the conflict has crystallized into its essence: a brutal war of aggression with foreign funded mercenaries and international takfiries on one side, and a struggling multi-ethnic, multi-religious Syrian army and allies on the other.

SSUK and their American counterpart Syrian American Council are an integral part of Team Regime Change. They receive direct and indirect funding from the governments they are allied with. They are promoted in the Zionist establishment in the USA. Their voice is amplified by the media. Yet that is not enough. They aggressively attempt to block, prevent and censor any other voices.

In 2014 the voice of Mother Agnes Mariam was disrupted and attacked at various venues in the USA because she talked about the reality in Syria rather than what was being proclaimed by Washington and Doha. Her voice was shamefully shut down in London. The reason: because she opposed the media propaganda narrative about the chemical weapon attack in August 2013. Now some of the same sectarian propagandists are trying to prevent Dr. Tim Anderson from speaking at a global conference in Greece examining the refugee crisis and its causes. Dr. Anderson brings an analysis of the “Dirty War on Syria” and its connection to the refugee situation. That is what SSUK cannot abide and why they have threatened to disrupt the conference.

Under pressure from SSUK, the “Crossing Borders” conference organizers withdrew their invitation to keynote speaker Dr. Tim Anderson. This censorship led to hundreds of calls for the the conference to be true to its stated goals. To their credit, conference organizers realized the error and Dr. Anderson who will be presenting a paper and speaking at the conference. Now, the sectarian and bullying SSUK is again on the rampage; they are threatening to disrupt the conference and urging speakers to withdraw. After five years of continuous propaganda and demonization of the Assad government, what kind of academics or activists are so pathetic they cannot stand to hear a different perspective? What could be more relevant to an examination of the refugee crisis than an examination of the root causes?

The true nature of SSUK and their ‘revolution’ is revealed by their own actions. They talk about ‘freedom and democracy’ but practice censorship, repression and intimidation.  Their threats need to be rejected and their actions condemned. They evidently do not want to solve the crisis; they want to escalate it.

June 7, 2016 Posted by | Deception, Full Spectrum Dominance | , | Leave a comment

Will Hillary Clinton Get Favored Treatment?

By Ray McGovern | Consortium News | June 6, 2016

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is in a legal pickle over her careless email practices – in that she appears to have endangered national security secrets including the identity of covert CIA officers and done so for selfish reasons (personal convenience or keeping her documents out of reach of transparency laws).

The facts of the case would seem to merit criminal charges against her, since Clinton’s situation is analogous to problems faced by other senior officials, including former CIA directors John Deutch and David Petraeus who were accused of mishandling classified information, Deutch by having secret material on his home computer and Petraeus for giving notebooks with highly sensitive information to his lover/biographer.

Deutch agreed to plead guilty to a misdemeanor but was preemptively pardoned by President Bill Clinton; Petraeus pled guilty to a misdemeanor in a plea deal that spared him from jail time and was widely criticized as excessively lenient, especially since the Obama administration had jailed lower-level officials, such as former CIA officer John Kiriakou, for similar violations.

In 2012, faced with a multiple count indictment, Kiriakou agreed to plead guilty to one count of violating the 1982 Intelligence Identities Protection Act for giving a reporter the phone number of a former CIA officer whose work for the spy agency was still classified. Though the reporter did not publish the ex-officer’s name, Kiriakou was sentenced to 30 months in prison.

The Intelligence Identities Protection Act was also a factor in the “Plame-gate affair” in 2003 when officials of George W. Bush’s administration disclosed the CIA identity of Valerie Plame as part of a campaign to discredit her husband, former U.S. Ambassador Joseph Wilson, who had challenged Bush’s claims about Iraq seeking yellowcake uranium for a nuclear program, one of the falsehoods that was used to justify invading Iraq.

Right-wing columnist Robert Novak blew Plame’s undercover identity but a special prosecutor chose not to indict anyone, including Bush’s aides, under the 1982 law. He did, however, convict Vice President Dick Cheney’s chief of staff, I. Lewis Libby, of obstructing justice. However, Bush commuted Libby’s sentence so he avoided jail time.

The recent State Department Inspector General report makes clear that Clinton blithely disregarded safeguards designed to protect the most highly classified national security information and that she included on her unprotected email server the names of U.S. intelligence agents under cover.

In other words, there is legal precedent for Hillary Clinton to be charged in connection with her decision to handle her State Department emails through a personal server in her home in Chappaqua, New York, rather than through official government servers. But there’s political precedent as well for the well-connected to be either slapped on the wrist or let off the hook.

A Biblical Warning

Beyond Clinton’s legal predicament over secrets, there is also the question of how she manipulates information on small matters as well as big. There’s a pertinent Bible quotation: “If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones. But if you are dishonest in little things, you won’t be honest with greater responsibilities.” (Luke 16:10)

Army veteran and ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern, standing in protest of a speech by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Feb. 15, 2011.

Ray McGovern standing in protest.

And I happen to have personal experience with how Clinton has been dishonest in the little matter of my brutal arrest on Feb. 15, 2011, after I stood with my back turned toward her while she delivered a speech at George Washington University about the importance of respecting dissent (in other countries, that is).

I have looked closely at her relevant email exchanges from late February 2011 after Secretary Clinton didn’t miss a syllable as I was roughly dragged away by security personnel right in front of her. From my review of those emails, I had two take-aways: (1) Secretary Clinton is not truthful about the smallest of things; and (2) she had a much more important issue to worry about at the time; namely, rallying support for a “no-fly zone” as a gateway to a “regime change” war on Libya.

Could that be why she never took up her confidant Sidney Blumenthal’s suggestion that an apology to me might be in order? Since the emails speak so eloquently to both issues, I will cite them below:

On my standing silently at George Washington U. on Feb. 15, 2011:


From: sbwhoeop [Sidney Blumenthal]

To: H (Hillary Clinton)

Sent: Fri Feb 18, 09:27:25, 2011

Subject: H: FYI, an unfortunate incident. Sid

“Don’t know if you are aware of this unfortunate incident described below on Larry Johnson’s website. Ray McGovern, a former CIA officer who gave the daily brief for President George H.W. Bush, is pretty well known in the intelligence community. He’s become a Christian antiwar leftist who goes around bearing witness. Whatever his views, he’s harmless. Something bad happened at your speech at GW. And it’s become a minor cause celebre on the Internet among lefties. You might have someone check this out and also have someone apologize to Ray McGovern. Sid”


From Sidney Blumenthal (continued)

“Larry C. Johnson is a former analyst at the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, who moved subsequently in 1989 to the U.S. Department of State, where he served four years as the deputy director for transportation security, antiterrorism assistance training, and special operations in the State Department’s Office of Counterterrorism. He left government … in October 1993 … and is an expert in the fields of terrorism, aviation security, and crisis and risk management, and money laundering investigations. Johnson is the founder and main author of No Quarter, a weblog that addresses issues of terrorism and intelligence and politics.)”

Blumenthal then quoted from a blog piece that Johnson wrote after hearing what happened during Secretary Clinton’s speech at GWU on Feb. 15:

“During a speech by Hillary earlier this week at George Washington University retired CIA analyst, Ray McGovern, was physically accosted and arrested for disorderly conduct for the simple act of standing up and turning his back to Hillary. Ray ended his career at the CIA as one of the senior officers who provided George H.W. Bush his daily intelligence brief. Since then Ray has emerged as an anti-war activist. Ray is a fearless but he also is a kind, gentle soul. …

“Unfortunately Hillary is getting blamed for what happened to Ray, but it is not her fault. Hillary is not in charge of her security detail. … He had every right to stand and silently protest. He posed no threat to Hillary and made no threatening move. The security folks grossly over-reacted. … Since the folks inside the auditorium had gone thru a metal detector there was no reason to assume that Ray represented a threat to do harm. It is the ultimate irony that the Obama Administration is calling on foreign leaders to tolerate protest and dissent but when it comes to an old man standing silently there was no tolerance at all.”

[end of shortened text of email from Larry Johnson, quoted by Sidney Blumenthal]

Clever Wording

Secretary Clinton then replied:

To: Sidney Blumenthal Subject: “H: FYI, AN UNFORTUNATE INCIDENT. SID”

From: H [one of two email accounts that Clinton used]

To: sbwhoeop

Sent: Friday, February 18, 2011 10:14 AM [replying to Blumenthal less than an hour later]

Subject: Re: “H: FYI, an unfortunate incident.”

“Sid I appreciate your sending thgis (sic) to me. Neither State nor my staff had anything to do w this. The man stood up just as I was starting and GW–which claims their quick actions were part of their standard operating procedures to remove anyone who stands up and starts speaking while an invited guest is talking–moved to remove him. GW claims he was not in any way injured. We have no other info but I will see what else can be done.”

In this brief email, Secretary Clinton takes two misleading tacks. Though she had first-hand knowledge that I had not been “speaking” — since she was there — she suggests otherwise while not actually saying so. She just strongly implies that I was “speaking.”

Not only was she an eyewitness, numerous videos on the Internet in the days prior showed that I did not say a word until the security people had me in a headlock and almost out the door and into the street. Lawyers like Hillary Clinton apparently parse words – even on minor matters, and even in emails that they hope will never see the light of day. (And what, by the way, is the meaning of “is?”)

Ray McGovern displaying the aftermath of his arrest during a speech by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Feb. 15, 2011.

Ray McGovern on Feb. 15, 2011.

Similarly, Secretary Clinton attributes to GWU the claim that I “was not in any way injured.” Case closed. … except for the photos sent around on the Web a few days earlier.

So, as you might guess, there was no apology from the Secretary of State or a statement that perhaps the “unfortunate incident” with McGovern had unfortunately stepped on her passionate and surely heartfelt denunciation of Iran for not respecting the right of dissidents to protest their government’s policies.

Targeting Gaddafi

But the incident with me was minor compared to what Secretary Clinton was then cooking up for Libya, where she was outraged that Col. Muammar Gaddafi was citing the need to root out Islamic terrorists operating around Benghazi. Dismissing Gaddafi’s claims, Clinton and her State Department preferred to denounce Gaddafi’s domestic “war on terror” as a “genocidal” attack on innocent dissenters in eastern Libya.

Again, Clinton was communicating with her outside adviser Blumenthal about how to rile the world up enough against Gaddafi to push a “no-fly zone” through the United Nations Security Council.

Secretary Clinton’s private emails also contradict her testimony before the House Benghazi Committee that Blumenthal “was not at all my adviser on Libya,” although I guess it depends on what your definition of “adviser” is. The emails show that she actually took immediate proactive steps to follow up on his advice, as can be seen in the following:


From: sbwhoeop [Sidney Blumenthal]

Sent: Monday, February 21, 2011 10:32 PM

To: H Subject: H: Option: no-fly zone over Libya. David Owen proposes. S

“UK former Foreign Secretary David Owen has called for a no-fly zone over Libya, imposed by the United Nations and/or Nato … US might consider advancing tomorrow. Libyan helicopters and planes are raining terror on cities.”

[Article from Aljazeera as quoted by Blumenthal]: “In the wake of reported aiattacks (sic) on civilian crowds by the Libyan airforce, former Foreign Secretary Lord David Owen has called on the UN Security Council to immediately meet in emergency session and authorise a `No Fly Zone’ over Libya. Speaking on al Jazeera, Lord Owen called for a UN Charter Chapter 7 intervention (meaning the authorisation of both military and non-military means to ‘restore international peace and security’) to be enforced by NATO air forces with Egyptian military support to demonstrate regional backing.”


From: H <> [the other Clinton email, using her maiden name initials, Hillary Diane Rodham]

To: Sullivan, Jacob 3 [deputy chief of staff]

Sent: Mon Feb 21 22:42:21 2011

Subject: Fw: “H: Option: no-fly zone over Libya. David Owen proposes. Sid”

“What do you think of this idea?”


From: Sullivan, Jacob J []

Sent: Tuesday, February 22, 2011 04:59 AM [early the next morning]

To: H

Subject: Re: “H: Option: no-fly zone over Libya. David Owen proposes. Sid”

“Several have proposed it but honestly, we actually don’t know what is happening from the air right now. As we gain more facts, we can consider.”


From: H [back to the other email address]

Sent: Tuesday, February 22, 2011 6:09 AM

To: sbwhoeop

Subject: Re: “H: Option: no-fly zone over Libya. David Owen proposes.”

“Sid, We are looking at that for Security Council, which remains reluctant to ‘interfere’ in the internal affairs of a country. Stay tuned!”


From: H <>

To: Sullivan, Jacob J

Sent: Tue Feb 22 06:34:15 2011

Subject: Re: “H: Option: no-fly zone over Libya. David Owen proposes. Sid”

“I’ve heard contradictory reports as to whether or not there are planes flying and firing on crowds. What is the evidence that they are?”


From: Sullivan, Jacob J <>

Sent: Tuesday, February 22, 2011 7:21 AM

To: H

Subject: Re: “H: Option: no-fly zone over Libya. David Owen proposes. Sid”

“Not much – unconfirmed reports. Though helos firing seems more plausible.”


On to War

It took three more weeks, but on March 17, 2011, Secretary Clinton got her wish for a “no-fly zone” approved by the UN Security Council, acting under the military authority of Chapter Seven of the UN Charter. The vote was ten in favor, zero against, and five abstentions.

The five abstentions were: Brazil, Russia, India, China and Germany; Russian and China, which as permanent members could have vetoed the motion, complained later that they were deceived as to the real purpose of the “no-fly zone,” not realizing that it was a pretext for another “regime change,” which involved slaughtering much of the Libyan army before driving Gaddafi from power.

When Gaddafi was captured in his home town of Sirte on Oct. 20, 2011, he was tortured with a knife, which was used to sodomize him. Then he was murdered. When Clinton was notified of Gaddafi’s demise, she  declared, “we came, we saw, he died” — and clapped her hands in undisguised glee.

It turned out, however, that Gaddafi was right that many of his adversaries in the east were radical jihadists and terrorists, a truth that Clinton learned when U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other U.S. personnel were slain by attackers in Benghazi on Sept. 11, 2012.

Clinton’s deception around the Libyan “no-fly zone” – as a gateway to yet another brutal U.S.-backed “regime change” – also helped poison U.S. relations with Russia and China, which balked at similar U.S. demands for a “safe zone” inside Syria, an idea that Clinton has advocated both as Secretary of State and as a presidential candidate.

In other words, Clinton is no more honest about big things than small, just as the Bible passage foretold, except now the fate of the world may hang in the balance.

Ray McGovern works with Tell the Word, a publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in inner-city Washington. He served as a CIA analyst for 27 years, and used to brief every other morning one of Secretary Clinton’s predecessors, George P. Shultz, with the President’s Daily Brief.

June 7, 2016 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, Militarism | , | 1 Comment