Monday, April 7, 2014

The Witches of Democratic Foreign Policy

Hecate and Her Weird Sisters
Mad Albright
Rice, Susan
Unca Sam

["Double, double toil and trouble, fire burn and caldron bubble."

Since Reagan/Bush—and then Clinton, and then Bush, again—emancipated Private Capital from all effective State controls and any and all Social responsibilities, and all the duties formerly belonging to the Crown were contracted out in a ‘Free Market’ where nothing has intrinsic value but all is valorized only in its exchange, where alleviating Human want ceased to be the impetus for economic reproduction and Need, itself—expressed as debt, disease and misery—was commodified and mass-produced, perpetuated and traded on into futures that would test Azimov's imagination: now the essential outcome of human activity seems to have become the ever-greater re-production of Waste. 

Post-Capitalist Imperialism, without ever overcoming its malignant instinct for self-preservation and self-valorization, has introduced an even more lethal strain of colonialism than that propagated by Lord Kitchener and King Leopold:  the unregenerate extraction of the colonies' resources exchanges the native wealth for a sere hellscape over which the deeply mutilated victims of this spoilage are encouraged to wage Malthusian war.

And it is this plague-version of colonialism, this left-anti-imperialist-resistant genre of Imperialism—and if Dinesh  d'Souza is right in his Fuckumentary "2016", this is a geostrategy that Barack Obama's very DNA should oppose—that is being spread throughout Eastern Europe, the Middle East and North and Central Africa by the same agencies that pretend to be defending Human Rights and promoting Democracy.  Outfits like USAID, NED, Save the Children, Freedom House, Human Rights Watch, Amnesty, any of the Soros-backed Open Society groups like the IWPR, ICG, CANVAS, OTPOR, or francophonia's Survie & Ibuka—right, Western Military Intelligence in dirty dreads and a Sears poncho—are the vanguard.

So—and not merely to kill someone's psycho-historical glue-buzz over the Big Black Bare-Chested Villain Theory of Foreign Evil—on this the 20th anniversary of what continues—even as forests of evidence and legions of witnesses testify against its ever happening like that in Kigali--to be described as "The Rwandan Genocide:  In Which 800,000 Tutsis and Moderate Hutus Were Exterminated in 100 Days by Extremist Hutu Under the Direction of the Habyarimana/MRND Government After First Assassinating their Leader, etc., etc.":  It seems way past high-time that certain names were named and certain games were shamed.  

The Clintons and their neo-liberal, evangelical storm troopers for Humanity can no longer be allowed to front that they knew nothing about the horrors that were taking place at their behest in Central Africa after, say, 1 October 1990, the date of the Ugandan invasion of Rwanda; or after 6 April 1994 when a double presidential assassination brought less international attention than the JFK, Jr., assassination. 

That the four women pictured above are all deeply involved in bringing about the Wasting of decent societies in the Balkans of Central Europe and Les Milles Collines d'Afrique centrale—that they are WOMEN is nothing more than coincidence.  There is no implication of any sort of 'feminist conspiracy' here, beyond the usual geostrategic joint criminal enterprise that is claiming Rape as a war crime.  But that these four—and their neo-colonialist coven within the Democratic Party—continue to wield influence in the formation of Defense and State Dept. policy—and, in so doing, continue to neutralize and even corrupt the progressive tendencies that President Obama has demonstrated, especially domestically, throughout his presidency—is or should be the source of grave concern.

My friend Charles Onana, whose French works make up the definitive history of Central and North Africa, gave this interview to the weekly Marianne as a signal that his latest book on Rwanda will drop soon.  His writing seems to be purposefully withheld from Anglo-Saxon readers.  I've tried in little ways (like translating this interview) to fill this important lacuna.  But, as the interview will make obvious, the resistance in the US to knowing the real History of Africa is much stronger than this old man can break.—mc]

Saturday 29 March 2014

Interview with Charles Onana on Rwanda 20 yrs After

Marianne:  Is it still your view that France never stopped seeking a peaceful, political solution to the conflict between the RPF and the Habyarimana regime, while the US was constantly playing both sides off against each other?

Charles Onana:  From the time the RPF attacked Rwanda from its guerilla bases in Uganda, in 1990, President Mitterrand believed that, whatever the cost, it was necessary to stop the destabilization of Rwanda and, more broadly, that of the entire Great Lakes region.  In a direct continuation of policies created by his predecessor Valery Giscard d’Estaing, he (Mitterrand) decided to support Habyarimana and to adopt the military cooperation agreements that bound the two countries.  The Americans followed a completely separate logic.  Habyarimana was allied with Mobutu, the president of Zaire (now Democratic Republic of Congo [DRC]), a privileged partner with the US for thirty years because he was considered an effective bulwark against communism, but had become less useful, and even a burden, in their eyes.  In 1990, the Americans feigned surprise at the RPF offensive that resulted in thousands of deaths and tens of thousands of displaced persons.  But in reality, they knew all about it. 

And for good reason:  Kagame had been trained at the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College in Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas, just like many other RPF officers.  The Pentagon and the CIA knew perfectly well that he would take the route of insurgency, knew all about and, in fact, supported his project to topple Habyarimana by force of arms and invade eastern Congo/Zaire.  At the time of the RPF attack, Habyarimana was in the US, where officials had offered him asylum, intending, certainly, to leave an open field for the RPF.  He refused this offer. . . .  When he got back to Kigali, Mitterrand pressured him constantly to negotiate with the RPF, demanded he democratize the country and put in place a government open to the unarmed opposition.  Habyarimana accepted without batting an eye because of his need for French aid.

From 1990 to 1993, François Mitterrand, despite his great efforts, was unable to bring about an agreement between the two parties.  On several occasions he rushed emissaries to urge Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni to put pressure in this direction on Kagame and his RPF, who were, purely and simply, active members of his military and government services.  Bruno Delaye, a Mitterrand advisor at the Élysée, and the Minister of Cooperation Marcel Debarge made the trip to Kampala.  Officially, the US and Great Britain supported these efforts, but, on the down low, they had been supporting the insurgents since 1988.

Marianne:  Does this include militarily?

CO:  Actually, Washington’s solid support of the Tutsi rebellion was worked out in the second half of the George H.W. Bush (Poppy) administration.  In 1992, in Orlando, Florida, investigators from the US Customs Service uncovered significant arms trafficking, including missiles and helicopters, destined for Uganda and whose kingpin was none other than the Director of Yoweri Museveni’s Cabinet.  But at this time Uganda was not at war, and the president had eliminated all opposition from inside his country.  Some of these arms must have been meant for the South Sudanese rebels of John Garang, at war against the Khartoum government of General Omar al-Bashir whom the Americans wanted to get rid of, and the rest . . . for Kagame’s RPF.

Marianne:  Did they make it to their destination?

CO:  When the US Justice Dept. found out that this arms business was old and that Museveni was behind it, the CIA and the Pentagon did all they could to cover it up.  And they must have, to a certain extent, succeeded because the Bush administration wound up releasing, very officially, a specific aid budget for Uganda, meaning, in reality, for the Tutsi rebellion.  Later, at the time of the signing of the Arusha Peace Agreement, UN observers would find large quantities of weapons from “Ugandan stocks” in the hands of the RPF.

Marianne:  You write that, for the Americans, Habyarimana’s chief fault was his close relationship with Mobutu.

CO:  The two men were really very close, but, I repeat, the US wanted to be rid of Mobutu.  The Rwandan ambassador to Washington told me how, at that time, Herman Cohen, US Under-Secretary of State for African Affairs, had revealed the destabilization plan they intended to carry out.  For that they needed Habyarimana to grant them passage through Rwandan territory.  He never accepted this nor ever really understood that the offensive against the French “Pré-Carré” or French-speaking Africa was written into American policy and had already been to a large extent implemented.

Since Clinton’s arrival in the White House, this policy had intensified, especially under the influence of then-US Ambassador to the UN Madeleine Albright and Susan Rice, then on the staff of the National Security Council (later, Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, and now US National Security Advisor—cm/p)

Marianne:  But didn’t the US support the Arusha Peace Accords between the RPF and the Habyarimana regime?

CO:  Absolutely.  But in a very twisted kind of way.  I found a document from the State Dept. addressed to Herman Cohen explicitly describing the pressures he was supposed to put on Habyarimana, by France’s Paul Dijoud (director of African Affairs for the Foreign Ministry in 1992) and Belgium’s Willy Claes (then Foreign Affairs Minister for that country), to accept the entirety of the Arusha Accords.  Knowing full well that the terms were unacceptable to the Hutus.

Marianne:  What was the attitude of the US after the 6th of April 1994?

CO:  For the three months the killings lasted, the Americans didn’t once make a move toward creating any real peacekeeping operation that might have put an end to them.  They had to make sure the French didn’t introduce a military force into Kigali because the RPF had demanded they get out of Rwanda. . . .  As long as the French troops remained in Kigali, the RPF would not be able to take power.  In June, when the UN asked France to put together what would become Operation Turquoise, the Americans supported them formally but not logistically, even though they had promised to furnish them with air support.  Then they put together their own humanitarian operation, Support Hope, out of Kampala (the Ugandan capital—ndlr), but by then there was no one left to save in Rwanda. . . .

The British went right along with the US creating their own Operation Gabrielle.  In reality all these military officials, among whom were Israelis, took it upon themselves to train a new Rwandan Armed Forces that would be under the control of the RPF.

Even before the mass killings had stopped, the US State Dept. insisted that the new authorities be recognized.  And sometime later, French, which had been the official language of the Rwandan government from before colonial times was removed from administrative life. . . .

Marianne:  Was Mitterrand aware of the Anglo-Americans’ double-dealing?

CO:  Yes, especially because his Chief of Staff, General Christian Quesnot, perfectly understood the strategy of the RPF and its supporters in Washington and London.  But Mitterrand was already sick and, in the face of the violent anti-French campaign in the national media, he could not or did not know how to oppose it.

Marianne:  François Mitterrand, friend and accomplice of the génocidaires. . . . This charge appeared once again in a recent cartoon promoted by journalist Patrick de Saint-Exupéry.  What do you think of that?

CO:  It’s ridiculous!  On a personal, political, or media level, what interest could this man, whose great intelligence even his enemies acknowledge, have had in encouraging a genocide?  Among his detractors who compare the Rwandan genocide with The Holocaust—and that makes no sense on a historical level—some are merely evening scores with him.

Marianne:  But isn’t it a premeditated genocide all the same?

CO:  If this were the case, don’t you think the RPF, the international organizations, those countries present in one way or another in the region would have sounded the alarm well before the 6th of April 1994?  But there isn’t any documented evidence of such a phenomenon.  And that is why the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) has had such difficulty establishing it.

Marianne:  The only expert-report to date, that of judges Marc Trévidic and Nathalie Poux, assigns responsibility, without naming any of them, to Extremist Hutus for being the most likely perpetrators of the 6 April attack, coming out of Camp Kanombé under the control of the Rwandan Armed Forces (FAR), who were faithful to Habyarimana. . . .  

CO:  First, the investigation by these judges is far from being finished.  And, in my opinion, it still has numerous weaknesses.  How is it that, for example, the commander of Camp Kanombé has never given testimony?  He did, however, write to Judge Trévidic in this regard, just as a Captain in the FAR who had gathered a great deal of pertinent testimony from among the soldiers of the camp.  Likewise for the UN observers present on the scene or with General Roméo Dallaire, the Commander of the UNAMIR.  All of these people could have brought important information to enrich the investigation.

Marianne:  After four books and years of inquiry, what do you believe?

CO:  I remain persuaded that Kagame and his men are the ones who carried out the attack.  I have already written that, and he sued me in French court before later withdrawing his complaint.  Strange, huh?  The ICTR has done everything it could to exclude the attack from its investigations.  If they had documents and testimony supporting their conviction that the Hutus were responsible for the attack, don’t you think the Tribunal would have acted on them?

Interview by Alain Léauthier

Tuesday, September 24, 2013



Statement by the Slobodan Milosevic International Committee

The world is facing one of the gravest threats in its history. Aggression against Syria by hordes of terrorists trained, supplied and paid by the Western Corporate Empire – US with its NATO, Zionist and Wahhabite proxies, threatens to turn into full scale war that will ignite a powder keg in the Middle East and trigger a nuclear war between America and Russia.
The American and western propaganda machine has used the phrase “positive Kosovo experience” to try to justify its aggression. Indeed, the aggressions against Yugoslavia/Serbia and Syria have many things in common – from sending extremists from abroad to destabilize harmonic multiethnic societies, to lies about the “regime” disseminated by Western media and politicians, turning the treatment of the nation’s leader from respected partner and “factor of peace” into “butcher” and “dictator”.  Finally, when the terrorists are almost defeated, the threat of massive use of American and vassal state military force appears, bypassing the UN Security Council. The false stories of massacres of civilians by the regime, were used to demonise Serbia as we saw at Racak, just as they have been used at Ghouta to demonise the Syrian government. These propaganda techniques are themselves war crimes and are designed to generate support for the planned aggression. In addition, the Syrian people, like the Serbian people who bravely resisted the US&NATO aggression in 1999, are united around their government and its determined resistance.

But there is a major difference – the world is not the same as it was in 1999.  The financial mechanisms that western imperialist capital has used to exploit the world for its profit are broken. The USA and the EU are experiencing severe economic, social and moral convulsions. Another major war is needed to maintain America’s supremacy as the armed enforcer of western capital. If America can kill and destroy with impunity, the collapse of western finances would be delayed, and countries in fear of its power would keep using the worthless dollars and taking credits from the vampire-banks. The attempt at world dictatorship of western oligarchy would continue. But the balance of forces has shifted.  China, India, Brazil have grown quickly into sovereign economic, political and military powers. America and its principal ally Britain are in steep decline. In spite of the controlled western mainstream media, people around the globe reject imperialist aggression and war propaganda, influencing their governments to distance from the dangerous American war threat, so even the British Parliament voted against the war for the first time in more than 200 years. And most importantly, Russia has recovered its ability and determination to act again as a sovereign superpower, and has accepted the challenge of facing and resisting the monster empire, not only for its own interests, but on behalf of mankind threatened by a new fascism.
The “democratic” mask of Dr. Jekyll has, once again, been lifted to reveal the capitalist, imperialist, “neo-liberal” face of Mr. Hyde in all its depravity. The imperialists, acting through all their various secret societies, Trilateral commissions, Bilderberg groups, banksters, narco-mafias, are now openly acting in favor of death and against the people of the world and the people of America itself in order to save their power. Their true aims are exposed. Their empire is doomed. All free nations and free people everywhere from Latin America to China, have found their voices long suppressed by fear. They must unite now, resist and win – a just World, based on International Law, and the respect for humanity that we all had hoped would be established after the victory over fascism in 1945. One cannot serve both good and Mammon.

Monday, September 23, 2013


The Rwandan Resistance

[Paul Kagame is one of the most heinous, long-reigning war criminals the world has ever known.  What makes him so incomprehensible is the unwavering support he has received from that neo-liberal, neo-colonialist, Christian/Zionist tendency in the US government, that strain embodied by Democrats like the Clintons, Susan Rice, Samantha Power, Madeleine Albright, and their STFG marching band.

From his earliest days as Chief of Ugandan Military Intelligence--an official position in Museveni's government and military that disqualified him from any legitimate claim to Rwandan refugee status long before he was called back from a command course at Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas, in October 1990, to take over leadership of the invasion of his ancestral home by a Western-backed mercenary army, euphemistically called the Rwandan Patriotic Army, from its original, though newly deceased (at the hands of his own men?) commander, Fred Gisa Rwigema; until his final offensive to seize state power by taking the capital city of Kigali, launched on 6 April 1994, with a SAM missile strike against the Rwandan executive jet carrying the two democratically-elected Heads of State of Rwanda and Burundi, as well as the Chief of Staff of the beseiged Rwandan Army, and triggered a mass slaughter that has extended into Eastern Congo and cost upward of 5 million African lives, a death toll that rises with each passing day of the Kagame presidency:  the Christian and Zionist business communities have been willfully blind to the graceless anti-democratic, the fascist machinations with which this brutal military dictator has maintained his hold on power.  

Recently, with UN reports suggesting genocide on the part of Kagame-backed militias like the M23 in Kivu and clear reprimands, including reduced financial and materiel support, issued from some EU donor-nations and the Obama administration, itself: it is becoming ever-clearer that the Kagame regime is not (and never has been) with US, but is firmly with the Terrorists.  We--those of us concerned with seeing International Peace and Justice--should make it vividly clear that this brutal US-hired hatchet-man is no longer welcome here--no matter how many honorary degrees, from however many Bible colleges, he's collected.--mc]

Me Chris Black

                            CHRISTOPHER C.BLACK
                   Counsel List, International Criminal Court
        Lead Counsel, International Criminal Tribunal For Rwanda

                                     September 23, 2013

The Right Honourable Stephen Harper, P.C, M.P. Prime Minister
Honourable Steven Blaney, P.C, M.P. Minister of Public Safety,
Honourable John Baird, P.C., M.P. Minister of Foreign Affairs,
Honourable Peter Mackay, P.C. M.P.Minister of Justice
House of Commons,
Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0A6

Dear Prime Minister and Ministers

Re Visit of President Paul Kagame of Rwanda September 28, 2013

I have been asked to convey to you the attached statement of protest against the visit to Canada by Paul Kagame, President of Rwanda, scheduled to make a speech in Toronto on September 28, 2013.

The statement of protest is clear and I will not repeat its contents here. Pursuant to the facts contained in that statement the organisations and political parties concerned hereby seek your reconsideration in allowing this visit to take place and request that it be interdicted. They also ask your assistance in prosecuting Paul Kagame under the laws governing Canada’s  universal jurisdiction with respect to war crimes.

You will understand that the visit of this man, whose war crimes are notorious, is causing great distress to the organisations concerned and all concerned Canadians and can only bring dishonour to the Canadian people and government and is not in the interests of this country.

The evidence of his crimes is contained in the files and trial transcripts of the proceedings before the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda and is before the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court. I would be pleased to provide you with some of this evidence if you so require.

If you have any questions of me I am pleased to assist further. I thank you for your time and consideration.

Please accept my highest regards,

Yours Sincerely,

Christopher C. Black


                          WE PROTEST!

The people of Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo, hereby represented in all their ethnic and cultural diversity by the Amahoro People’s Congress, the Rwanda National Congress (RNC-Ihuriro)  the Forces Democratiques Unifees (FDU-Ikingi) and the Social Party PS Imberakuri, the Rwanda Congress of Canada and the Women’s Network For Democracy and Peace (RIFDP) protest the  visit to Toronto of  Paul Kagame, a war criminal of the first order. 

WE PROTEST the visit of a man who has murdered hundreds of thousands of Hutus and Tutsis in Rwanda since 1990.

WE PROTEST the presence, in Canada, of a man who has murdered three African heads of state; President Juvenal Habyarimana of Rwanda, and President Cyprien Ntaryamira of Burundi in 1994 and President Laurent Desire Kabila, of the Democratic Republic of Congo (Zaire) in 2001.

WE PROTEST the mass murder of over 6 million Rwandans and Congolese peoples since 1996 in the Democratic Republic of Congo, a mass murder committed by Paul Kagame, in a continuous war waged on behalf of western interests, and with their assistance.

WE PROTEST the Canadian government’s permission for the visit and its shameful support of a man who has crushed any attempt at democracy in Rwanda; of a man who has nothing but contempt for the human, civil and political rights of the Rwandan people, of a man who uses cruel tortures and assassination against those who speak out.

WE PROTEST the protection from prosecution granted him by the International Criminal Court and the International Criminal Tribunal For Rwanda, which, though in possession of overwhelming evidence of 20 years of mass atrocities committed by Kagame in the Great Lakes region of Africa, have granted him complete immunity from prosecution, and thereby encouraged his crimes.

WE PROTEST AN WE DEMAND that Paul Kagame be charged with war crimes by the ICC, the ICTR and the Canadian government under its claimed universal jurisdiction under the Criminal Code and that the Prime Minister direct his Minister of Public Safety and the Commissioner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and Border Services Agency to immediately arrest Paul Kagame on his entry into the country and direct the Minister of Justice to commence criminal prosecutions against him forthwith.

WE PROTEST AND WE DEMAND that the Sheraton Hotel or any other hotels in Canada, refuse permission for Paul Kagame to stay on their premises and stain their reputation.








Press and Public Contact for the Organisers: Christopher C. Black, Barrister,

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Obligatory 911 Post--Syria Spared by C-in-C or POTUS?

9/11 2001 suburb of the US capital 

8/21 2013 (???) suburb of the Syrian capital

Why is it wrong to direct institutional criticism of various US State Dept. and DoD policies against a single individual, President Barack Obama? Why does one announce the irrelevance of what is to follow by leading with ‘President Obama is a socio-pathological liar’ or ‘Obama is a crazed war criminal, a race traitor and the blood-thirsty murderer of Muslim women and babies’ or (perhaps the saddest misreading of recent History) ‘Obama has betrayed the Black Prophetic Tradition’?—This ‘Prophetic tradition’ being the name recently given to the anti-communist tendency born out of the lynching of the Black vanguard of International Workers Movement.

What is wrong with attacking policy by attacking a single, however thoroughly demonized, leader? After all, was not Slobodan Milosevic responsible for the ‘genocides’ in Bosnia and Kosovo?  Was not Juvénal Habyarimana (posthumously through his 'extremist' Hutu-led MRND party) responsible for the ‘100-day 1994 genocide of Tutsis’ in Rwanda?  And was not Saddam Hussein responsible for the ‘genocide by gas’ of his own Kurdish fellows?  And was not Sudan’s president Omar al-Bashir responsible for the ‘genocide’ in Darfur?  And Moamar al-Kaddafy for the ‘genocide’ in Benghazi (or wetfe in Libya)? And Stalin for the 1933-34 ‘genocide-famine’ in the Ukrainian SSR?  And weren’t all these bloody tyrants punished for murdering their own people by having significant numbers of their countrymen and women and boys and girls slaughtered by a heavily-armed and ruthlessly Humanitarian West?  For who else but a sub-human people, a people unworthy of continued membership in the Community of Nations, would support—and do so democratically—such monstrous tyrants and vicious dictators?

And how then does one quantify Evil in order to say ‘Obama is more war-like than Bush’ or ‘Obama is the cruelest president in History, having pardoned fewer convicts than any other’ or ‘Obama has gone after twice as many (or fill in any factor that gets you off) whistle-blowers as any (or all) previous US head of State”?  Is this the same sort of math that makes Chelsea Manning’s 700,000 Iraq and Afghan war sit-reps (i.e., situation reports, used routinely in judicial investigations) or previously extant gun-sight videos, or Edward Snowden’s millions of ‘stolen’ phone company records obtained from the NSA, an organization involved in national and international ‘espionage’ or ‘information gathering’ since Truman was playing ‘Tea for Two’ in the Blue Room—is it the absolutely indigestible quantity of this anal leakage that turns it from excelsior to fois gras?  And turns nerdish, libertarian flacks like Assange, Hedges and Greenwald, guys who slobbered all over one another to catch as many of Mr. Soros’ colorful counter-revolutionary table scraps as they could, into the new Drew Pearsons and I.F. Stones?

And who really does this sorta shit?  Who benefits from this non-, even anti-criticism?  And what is the damage done to the Public Consciousness?

Most of the intellectual fly-weights who regularly get off on attacking political leaders for the misdeeds of their national institutions, thereby avoiding any due diligence in favor of mash notes on wet cocktail napkins, suffer from a common sort of Libertarian anti-Statism:  a kind of ambulatory paranoid States-o-phrenia where they are unable, or just too lazy, to distinguish between certain strategic appositions: like the differences between the Public Weal and Private Greed, or between the Government and the State, or (and I thank President Obama’s Syria speech for this one) between the role of Commander-in-Chief and that of the President. 

Conservatives fear and loathe the restrictive powers of the Big State, how it represses unto suppresses their ‘god-given, individual freedoms’—their imagined rights to do anything they want, with whatever they choose, to whomever they like (or, more probably, dislike).  This right-wing faction of the criminally demented can usually be found on FOX News or at or the Drudge Report, and, like today’s Republican Party, should be pitied for its self-inflicted irrelevance. 

But those who pretend to be Progressives, those who sit on the left side of the Assemblée Nationale, those NPRsters, unquestioningly anti-racist, anti-sexist, anti-Glenn Beckist, who proudly bear the label of Liberal and Democrat: for them to attack the US State in the person of a twice duly- and democratically-elected President Obama, is not just to abandon any pretense of being pro-democracy and anti-fascism, not just to mortgage their critical credentials for the sake of a heightened TVQ and a narrowed political identity, or to valorize their obviously shabby non-information through the tawdry offices of a false, media-driven consensus and, thereby, hopefully, to erase the memories of previous grave errors or other craven betrayals d’antan: it is, quite literally, to join in the hallucinatory circus of bi-partisan bad faith, reflexive ignorance and petty jealousy that is currently eating away at what precious little is left of a mental or spiritual life in the post-rational, post-decent West.

So, how appropriate that Thierry Meyssan should find his way onto my computer on this day, 11 September 2013! For it was Meyssan's Reseau Voltaire (through my friend and general counsel, Chris Black, the once and future Jacques Vergès) that first revealed the US govt. and media photos of the Pentagon on that Tuesday morning in 2001, showing that there was not a trace of a Boeing 757 having crashed into it and plenty of evidence that it had been lanced, like a great, suppurating fistula by some sort of airborne explosive engine—sorry, a missile. This was the genesis of the 911 Truth movement—though military intelligence has all but erased it from the file.

After another thinly encoded SOS from President Obama last night: (something like) "As Commander-in-Chief (of the most formidable Imperialist Juggernaut in the terrible History of Human Evil), I fully support our Intelligence (lies, damned lies, and Mossad pys-ops) that would lead us rationally to conclude that, because hundreds of kids were gassed on 21 August by the bloody butcher of Damascus, the Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad (whose newly reconstituted multi-party, secular State awaits general popular elections in 2014), raining hellfire on Syrians is the most effective way to protect Humanity from Absolute Human Evil (Assad? Real Democracy?); but as POTUS, leader of one of the world's oldest constitutional democracies, I think it a better idea to let the US (civilian) Public (even by way of its privately-bought and well-paid for political representatives) express themselves on these dire issues, for which they will have to shoulder the ultimate responsibility.

Get it? There are two leaders of the US: The C-in-C of the world's most genocidal armed forces and the twice popularly elected President. This is some repugnant, drug-resistant Sybil shit, here.


So, which is the real Barack Obama? --Sorry lefties, if you missed this distinction before, you’ve already failed the class and need just to shut the fuck up.--mc

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Belgrade-New York, aller/retour (ca 2002)--Next Stop Damascus?

[This was to be our 12th anniversary 911 post--and 14.5th anniversary of the NATO terror-bombing of Belgrade and environs post--but events in and around Damascus have conspired to nudge it up a little.

Of course, between US-backed interventions from Turkey and Jordan, where 1000 fresh pair of US boots have been on the ground since Spring, and the regular incursions into Syria, and especially its capital Damascus, by Israeli airpower, this another ancient seat of what can now only risibly be referred to as Western Civilization has been grotesquely degraded.  So, sad to say, looks like 911 is coming early this year.--mc]

Belgrade/New York: aller-retour

Mick Collins
20 September 2001

Since the terrible day of the attacks on New York City’s financial center (and on Washington DC), the pundits have been talking about wars: wars in the past and wars to come. All have called on collective memory as a force for tempering the fierce nationalist urges for retribution.

Edward Said points out the multifarious nature of Islam and suggests that Arabs in the Middle East are the victims of a Zionist intolerance similar to that born of the virulent strain of Islam that supposedly hijacked those airliners.

Noam Chomsky compared the ‘atrocity’ at the World Trade Center to Antietam, the terrible battle in the American civil war. And as to overall loss of life he suggested the New York events paled in comparison to Clinton’s bombing of the pharmaceutical factory in Sudan in response to the African embassy bombings or the sanctions against Iraq, both of which over time have claimed more than a million victims.

The Liberal columnist Wm Pfaff in the L.A. Times and the leftist radical gadfly Alexander Cockburn in his biweekly newsletter, CounterPunch, were among many who suggested the similarities between the attack on the WTC and Pearl Harbor. But Cockburn, who eats Liberals like Pfaff for lunch, suggested that as the Islamic terrorists who are supposed to have masterminded the September 11 suicide crashes were creations of the CIA, these attacks were more like the Contra war against the socialist Sandanistas in Nicaragua or the Mujahadeen’s conquest of the Soviet-backed government of Afghanistan in the 1980s.

But so far no one has compared New York’s encounter with Islamic terror to that of Belgrade.

Shortly after the failures of the Rambouillet negotiations and the Holbrooke-Milosevic talks in Belgrade and the withdrawal from Kosovo of the Peace Monitors, and just before the commencement of the bombing of Yugoslavia on 23 March 1999, an editorial appeared in the New York Times taking a position against the bombing of the city of Belgrade. It said that no matter how evil the policies of Serbian and Yugoslav president Milosevic might have been, this European capital of two million souls with its long cultural and historical ties to the West should be spared whatever destruction was being planned for the Yugoslav military infrastructure.

One could almost hear a sort of fraternity, an empathy with the people of Belgrade coming from the people of New York City. They were both multi-cultural, multi-confessional capitals—and shared most of the same values: they loved rock and all kinds of music, theatre, and poetry and history; the Yugoslavs often elevating men of the arts and letters to high public office. They had been on the same side, the winning side, in the two great wars of the 20th Century. There had even developed over the decades a shared business culture. It was, after all, Western neo-liberal reforms that had been at the heart of the break-up of Yugoslavia in 1989-91.

But as soon as the NATO bombing started and quickly spread to all areas of Serbian civilian life, the Great Grey Lady, as the Times is sometimes sentimentally referred to, quickly fell into full goose-step with the rest of the media and beat the war drums demanding punishment of the Serbs for their aggressive nationalism in starting all the Balkan wars of the 1990s.

So when the horror hit Manhattan’s financial district on September 11th, (9-11, the date the way Americans write it, is also the number dialed for emergency assistance) and the perpetrators were quickly identified as Islamic followers of Saudi CIA asset Osama bin Laden, there was nary a word spoken or a line written about any of the history that links these two great capitals.

I’m only an amateur at all this, but here are some items that might have lessened the feeling of alienation and isolation for New Yorkers:

1) Osama bin Laden travels on a Bosnian passport—a letter of transit guaranteed by US and NATO occupation forces that hold up that incredibly corrupt and feeble state.

2) The bombs used in the African Embassy bombings in Tanzania and Kenya were supposedly assembled by Islamist terrorists in Albania before being delivered to their targets.

3) The devastating loss of 400 firemen and rescue workers was the result primarily of the timing of the second airliner’s crash into the WTC South Tower. The 18-minute lag was just enough to get the rescue workers in place to be crushed by the crumbling building. I first discovered this technique in a Michael Parenti article in Covert Action Quarterly. It was employed by NATO in its bombing of Yugoslav civilian targets and for just that purpose: to trap and kill anyone who came to the aid of the victims of the first bombing run.

4) A rather cynical tendency to blame the US government for these attacks—if not for being actively complicit in a plot to save the foundering US economy by bringing about a world-wide war, then at least for being criminally negligent or incompetent in defending its capitals against a well-known, well-documented, and even self-generated threat—seems to be a reflex of modern public opinion. Remember how many in the West, as an expression of support for the Muslim terrorist-rebels in Chechnya, blamed the Russians for bombing their own apartment buildings and killing more than 300 of their own citizens? And how the subject was simply dropped when it became apparent that the Izetbegovic government in Sarejevo was itself responsible for the snipers and explosions that were blamed on the Serbs and brought about the first 14-day bombing in 1995? And how Carla Del Ponte, the chief prosecutor at the Tribunal in The Hague, suggested that Milosevic was responsible for the deaths at Belgrade TV because he knew of their probability but failed to warn the employees and allowed NATO to kill them in order to boost his popularity?

5) And more anecdotally: When a former friend of mine, a former New York Jew (well, he’s still a Jew, he’s just lived in Paris for the last 25 years)—when in the Spring of 1999 this intelligent and literate Manhattanite was presented with the reality of his two countries’ bombing their former anti-fascist ally, the final resting place of many of their heroic native sons (and Belgrade was and is still a rare place of sanctuary for Jews); his response was: “We should bomb them and keep bombing them and when they beg us to stop we should bomb them some more.”

Of course, America is grief-stricken and living in the terror of what might follow these incredible attacks. Its suffering people really should not have been expected to draw comparisons to its longest continuous military campaign since Vietnam. And the media have conspired with the pharmaceutical companies to reduce public memory along with public attention to the bare minimum required for meaningless toil—the length of an MTV video or a chorus of God Bless America.

And when it is necessary for ego defense to see men with an ideal, a love or a hate, a passion, a faith so great they are willing to give up their lives, and take the lives of thousands of other innocents with them, as faceless cowards; it wouldn’t do to recall how for 78 days and nights from great altitude and with no allied casualties, one’s own government dropped nuclear filth, mutilating, murdering anti-personnel bombs on men, women, children, the sick and the aged, in hospitals and schools and factories and office buildings and churches and playgrounds and parks and all other public places in support of the very same kind of Muslim terrorists who have just visited on USA the greatest single civilian catastrophe in its history.

Yet one must also consider that Belgrade was complicit in this historical amnesia. In the 10 October 2000 Der Welt, it was noted that after the victory of the ‘democratic opposition’ of Kostunica and Djindjic and in honor of the many visiting Western dignitaries, the eternal flame at the memorial to the victims of the NATO bombing was extinguished.

[nb—This last graph was cut by the courageous editor at Balkans Infos when the article appeared (in French) in the October 2001 edition.]

Thursday, August 29, 2013

NO WAR AGAINST SYRIA--Interview with the Syrian CP via the PCF--29 August 2013

An Interview with Ammar Bagdash, Secretary of the Syrian Communist Party

This interview with the Secretary of the Syrian Communist Party, Ammar Bagdash, took place at the time of a public meeting in Rome and a group-discussion about the causes, the evolution and the consequences of the civil war in Syria—or, to put it another way, about the attempted destabilization of a country that refused to take part in the Imperialist domination of the Middle East.

The interview was conducted by Sergio Cararo, Marinella Correggia,
and Maruizio Musolino

Why this attack on Syria?

Syria is a bulwark against North American expansionism in the Middle East, especially after  the occupation of Iraq.  But the real ramrod behind this project is actually Israeli president [Shimon] Peres, who has pursued this objective since the 1980s.  Syrian Communists have come to call this project ‘The Greater Zion’.  Syria has rejected all diktats by the US and Israel in the Middle East, supported the Iraqi resistance, that of the Lebanese and the right of Statehood for the Palestinians.

But how did the revolt, the crisis and the civil war in Syria come into existence?

In the analysis of Syrian Communists, the conditions were as much as anything the results of the neo-liberal measures adopted in 2005.  This policy had three negative effects: an increase in social inequality; social exclusion spread more and more throughout the suburbs of Damascus; and a decline in the quality of life for the general population.  This played to the advantage of the reactionary forces, like the Muslim Brotherhood, who are supported by the lower levels of the working class, especially among the rural proletariat.  When we denounced all this in the Parliament, we were accused of striking an ideological attitude, and of being idiots.

In Syria, they wanted to recreate what happened in Egypt and Tunisia.  But then these were two pro-imperialist countries.  In the case of Syria, things were different. It began with popular demonstrations in the rural areas of Daraa and Idleb.  But in the cities, there were huge demonstrations in support of [President Bashir] Assad.  Moreover, at the beginning, the police did not shoot, but certain elements among the demonstrators did initiate violent actions.  In the first seven months, there were more killed among the police and the army than in the other camp.  When the demonstrations were no longer effective, they turned to terrorism by killing those most visible (social leaders, public officials, journalists), attacking and sabotaging the civilian infrastructure.  The government reacted by enacting certain reforms, like the adoption of multi-partyism and greater freedom of the press, reforms that we supported.  But the reactionaries rejected these reforms.  As Communists, we understood this formula:  the debate and the actions had to be met with equal and opposite discussions and actions.  But, to reestablish order. terrorism could only be dealt with by the sovereignty of the law.

Then we moved on to a third stage.  A real armed revolt.  Attacks and targeted assassinations signaled the beginning of the assault on Damascus.  Next, the attacks were focused on Aleppo, with its geographical position making it easier to re-supply with smuggled arms and provisions from abroad.  The government responded by imposing the hegemony of the law.  It should be noted that the interventions by the army and the aerial bombardments took place in those areas where most of the civilian populations had already fled.  The rebels reacted to the Syrian Army’s counter-offensive with barbarity, even in areas where there were no combatants.  Then they laid siege to Aleppo.

Why did Syria resist?  What does this show?

In the last ten years in the Middle East, Iraq has been occupied, Libya forced to capitulate, but Syria has not.  Is this because of its greater internal cohesion, its more powerful armed forces, stronger international alliances, or because it has not yet suffered a direct military intervention by the Imperialist Powers?

In Syria, unlike with Iraq and Libya, there has always been a strong national alliance.  The Communists have worked within the government since 1966, without interruption.  Syria could not have resisted by depending solely on its military.  It was able to resist because it had a strong popular base of support.  And it was able to draw support from its allies like Iran, China and Russia.  And if Syria is still standing, the Imperialist crowned heads are going to roll because it clearly shows that there are other ways to go.  Ours is an internationalist struggle.  A Russian expert told me, “The role of Syria is like that of Spain in the war against Fascism.”

What effect could the events in Egypt have on the current situation in Syria?

There is a dialectical relation between what happened in Egypt and what is happening in Syria.  The common basis is popular discontent, but the Syrian resistance accelerated the fall of the Muslim Brotherhood regime in Egypt, and that greatly helped Syria because it showed how the Brotherhood was rejected by the people.

In a recent interview, Syrian President Assad said,  “In Syria, we have checked the onslaught of political Islamism.”  What do you think of that?

We, Syrian Communists, do not use the category of ‘Political Islam.’  There is a certain diversity within Islam.  Some, like the Muslim Brotherhood, are pro-Imperialist reactionaries, and some are progressives, like Hezbollah and even Iran.  I am not an fan of the Iranian model, but they are our allies in the struggle against Imperialism.  Since our Fifth Congress, we have judged Iran on the basis of its position on Imperialism.  Our watchword is:  For an International Front Against Imperialism.

In Italy, a large part of the Left thinks the rebels are fighting a Fascist regime, the Assad government.  What can you say to such a position?

If we’re talking about the definition of Fascism—a reactionary movement that employs violent means in the interests of monopolistic capitalism—in Syria, monopoly capitalism is not the dominant order.  It is, rather, the rebels who represent the interests of Big Capital.  As History teaches us, revolts are not always revolutions.  Think about the Nicaraguan Contras, about Franco’s forces in Spain, and there are others.

But is the opposition to Assad all reactionaries?  Or, as shown by the internal conflict between the Free Syrian Army and the militant Jihadists, or, in the last few days, between the Kurds and the Jihadists, are there progressive elements with whom we could initiate a dialogue?

Among the oppositionists, some have spent many years in Syrian prisons, and we have demanded and fought for their freedom.  These who oppose Assad have, however, all been against foreign interference or intervention.  Some of them live in Damascus and we work together for a national dialogue.  Even Haytham Menaa of the Democratic Coordination condemns the use of violence by the opposition army along with any interference from abroad.  Others like Michel Kilo come from the Left, but have betrayed these ideas, and, anyway, they cannot change the reactionary nature of this rebellion.

How do you explain the intensification of the differences between Saudi Arabia and Qatar, and how do these then effect the divisions within the rebel militias?

It’s true, the influence and the role played by Qatar has diminished, while Saudi Arabia’s influence has grown.  The whole thing about the confrontation with the Kurds is another story.  There were confrontations between the Kurds of the Kurdish Democratic Union and the militant Jihadists of al Nusra, but there were also conflicts between diverse Kurdish groups.

What’s happening with the Palestinians who are living in refugee camps in Syria?

I recently met an official of the PLO and he told me, “If Syria falls, adieu to Palestine.”  Hamas sometimes acts in great haste, has made many errors and caused a lot of problems.  We can say that this organization, which belongs to the Muslim Brotherhood, is reverting to its origins and will continue under the wing of Qatar.  But this is also dangerous for them.  Now, after what has happened in Egypt, what will happen in Gaza?  The majority of militants who are in the Palestinian refugee camps in Syria are not Palestinians.  The majority of Palestinians are totally against all interference in Syrian domestic affairs.

In Yarmouk, 70% of the inhabitants are Syrians because the refugee camps in Syria are not ghettos like in other countries.  There are still fighters in Yarmouk, but the Syrian population has left.  The Executive Committee of the PLO has come twice to Syria to ask about the protection of the refugee camps.  Yarmouk was overrun by al Nusra with help from Hamas in an attempt to provoke the Army, which had received orders not to react.

We don’t talk about it much, but what is the role of Jordan in the crisis and the civil war in Syria?

The Jordanian monarchy has always collaborated with the Imperialists, and the Muslim Brotherhood is intensely active there.  Jordan accepted the presence of the US troops on its territory, and the fourth attack against Damascus actually came from Jordanian territory.

And what game is Israel playing in Syria?

Israel supports the armed rebels, but when they don’t hit their assigned targets, it’s the Israeli air force that picks up the slack.  This happened in Damascus and also a few days ago in Latakia.

How is this tragedy going to play out?

We cannot hope to achieve any social progress, or with democracy, if we are under attack from external forces.  The daily goal is to defend our national sovereignty and protect the living conditions of our people.  As I said at the ANSA, the principal means for ending this Syrian massacre is first to stop all aid to the armed opposition from the reactionary and Imperialist countries.  Once the foreign aid is stopped, we can put an end to all military operations, including those of the Syrian government.  And resume a democratic process with legislative elections and political reforms, something obviously impossible at this stage of the armed struggle.  The political future of Syria will be decided in elections, notably the presidential elections of 2014.

Original Syrian translated by the CPF.
Translation from the French by CM/P