5/3/7State Attacks Immigrants; Empire:Comfort & Masquerade; Hip Hop Profanity,Misogyny and Violence; A "Ho" by Any Other Color

...colonialism or imperialism, as the slave system of the West is called, is not something confined to England or France or the United States. The interests in this country are in cahoots with the interests in France and the interests in Britain. It's one huge complex or combine, and it creates... an international power structure.... used to suppress the masses of dark-skinned people all over the world and exploit them of their natural resources."
Malcolm X

Enter the Empire: Comfort and Masquerade
Manuel Valenzuela
...Will the American people ever wake up to the destruction of their cherished rights and freedoms, knowing that one more 9/11 false flag type incident will be enough for the elite to make extinct all remaining illusions of liberty and democracy? The lust for Empire in America has blinded the elite to reality, and its people to the approaching storm. The world entire has realized the danger to the world of the unrivaled superpower, hijacked by greed and addiction to vice.

Rising superpowers are aware they are being targeted and threatened, for what was the Iraq invasion turned debacle but a preemptive move against Russia, China, India and the European Union, designed to control Iraq’s vast oil fields? What is the approaching storm in Iran but the continuation of the Empire’s power grab of natural resources, of putting in place those nations who have not fallen in line with the Empire’s vision of the future? What is Afghanistan but a beachhead into central Asia, a pipeline route to vast oil fields, a grand prize in the great chess match between nations?

In the grand chessboard of geostrategic and geopolitical realpolitik, the invasion and occupation of Iraq served notice that the Empire was declaring the 21st century America’s century, fully willing to embark on a most ominous journey of resource acquisition and control, through war, if it had to, through peace, if rivals acquiesced and submitted, bending down to kiss the royal ring of Empire. Iraq was and is seen as a new American colony, its oil now belonging to the Anglo-American enterprise, its 100 acre embassy, larger than Vatican City, serving to remind the world that Iraq will never be abandoned, it will never be relinquished. Its prize, besides the oil fields, is the geostrategic location it provides, opening up a giant military presence in the Middle East and central Asia. The availability of its two rivers, providing enormous amounts of water to the Arab world, assures America of control over the Middle East in this respect as well.

The endgame, of course, is Empire, the inevitable continuation of manifest destiny, begun long ago, traversing through time and space, exterminating everything in its way. The opportunity to be recorded in history as a rival to Rome has also become a large incentive to those whose egos are larger than their intellect. The endgame, as always in the system called capitalism, is resource control, human exploitation, wealth maximization, competitor extermination and power unrivaled[...]

from Arabian Sights...
How Europe Underdeveloped Africa
[Adapted from Walter Rodney, East African Educational Publishers, Nairobi, Kampala, Dar es Salaam, 1972]

..."The big contradiction of Development is that it makes the majority suffer in order to make its capitalist achievements possible. One of the major ideas behind Development is a comparative one. All the countries named as underdeveloped in the world are exploited by others and the underdevelopment with which the (‘educated’) world is preoccupied is a product of capitalist imperialist and colonialist exploitation…African societies were developing independently till they were taken over by capitalist powers. One of the most common means by which one nation exploits another and one that is relevant to Africa’s external relations is trade. The whole export-import relationship between Africa and its trading partners is one of unequal exchange and of exploitation [and] the ownership of the means of production in one country by citizens of another country. When the citizens of Europe own the land and mines of Africa, this is the most direct way of sucking the African continent. Foreign investment ensures that the natural resources and the labor of Africa are stored for future extraction and exploitation."

Over the years, the players in this game of exploitation have changed but the script remains the same. Ownership, Control and Exploitation need not be done overtly anymore as subtle/sophisticated models exist for achieving similar ends. One of the most effective ways of achieving control is through indoctrination! In the colonial era naked force was used to rob people of their material possessions, break their intellectual-spiritual capacities and re-construct their social realities. Today, modern institutional structures- themselves drawing from and sharing an intellectual breeding ground with colonialism’s assumptions are helping to achieve these ends-effectively. We have controls being exerted through the instruments of international finance-loans, deceptively called ‘aid’ are used to, not only control, but also to entrench a dehumanizing culture of dependence. Worse is the mental colonization. Perhaps the most important mission of colonial education- actively being pursued today- is the ‘naturalization’ of capitalist individualism and competition, which creates slavery to the Market and blunts creative, independent thinking. The result is the tearing apart of societies’ social fabrics- a manifestation of individualistic ethos.

Europe’s Contribution to Africa’s Underdevelopment

"In the case of manufacturing, achievements in Africa have been contemptuously treated because the modern conception of the word brings to mind factories and machines. Most African societies fulfilled their own needs for a wide range of articles of domestic use, as well as farming equipment. The colonial system led to a delay in industrial and technological developments in Africa. It totally destroyed/eradicated or neglected pre-existing indigenous industries, processing of locally produced raw materials and agricultural products, building materials, pottery and cookery, iron-tools etc. It has to be remembered that traditional Africa’s technological-industrial capacities emerged out of a completely unique set of social, cultural, environmental, and economic milieu. Its ‘greatness’-if one must use this word at all- must be seen in light of its adaptability to surrounding cultural, ecological, spiritual and moral sensitivities. In contrast to its modern exterminator, it was never avaricious, exploitative, dis-empowering, plunderous or competitive. Colonialism also saddled most colonies with mono-crop economies. Each colony was made to produce a single cash crop or two and no attempt was made to diversify agriculture. To this day, many African societies lack food for internal consumption, rice, maize, and other foods have to be imported."

"In the case of slavery, the [sudden] changeover from peaceful economic activity to war-like activities [of] kidnapping, raping, humiliating, burning affected all branches of economic activity for centuries to follow. The brutal and disruptive nature of slavery prevented millions of people from engaging in meaningful agriculture and industry. Hence there was stagnation in these fields. The connection between slavery and capitalist development in the growth of England is well documented by Eric Williams in Capitalism and Slavery. England derived immense benefits from trading and exploiting slaves –outstanding examples are provided in the persons of David and Alexander Barclay who were engaging in the slave trade in 1756 and who later used the loot to set up Barclays Banks!"

Why Today?
The reason why it is important to re-think these issues now is because there are myths (some 500 year-old) which are today badly affecting our intellectual/moral regenerative capacities and which we need to explode. For example, the myth that Americans (Westerners) are hardworking while Africans are lazy is as vacuous as it is racist. "The acquisition of wealth is not due to hard work alone or the Africans working as slaves in America and the West Indies would have been the wealthiest in the world. The individualism of the capitalist must be seen against the hard and unrewarded work of the masses." Such myths are in fact inhibiting our capacities to recognize that colonial/Western institutions were designed to destroy, not to respect and appreciate our wealth of experiences. It is upon such myths that we, the educated people, have forced huge sections of our people to abandon their meaning making systems ostensibly to join us in a costly march towards a narrowly defined Progress, an illusory ideal. Today, communities around the world are already conceiving of fresh ways of knowing, based on rich historical and civilizational experiences. We may want to reflect upon certain questions

What kinds of questions and views should we raise and reflect upon to liberate and discover new understandings about our societies? [...]

Christian-fascist crusaders for a global capitalist kingdom of white supremacist 'manifest destiny':

“The Christian Taliban is Running the Department of Defense”
By Robert Koehler
... a contingent of religious zealots, with contempt for secular values (and such manifestations of secular order as the U.S. Constitution) - with zest for holy war in control of the most potent fighting force and weaponry in human history http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article17642.htm

US Theocons Fight Battle in Iraq
IOL Staff
Many has been written about the privatization of the Iraq war, but in his new bestseller book Jeremy Scahill sheds much needed light on the ideological roots of the largest US private mercenary firm and its links to the theocons and the Christian militia Sovereign Military Order of Malta. The book, Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army, exposes the infiltrating influence of the North Carolina-based largest private mercenary firm... http://www.uruknet.de/?p=32592

Imperialist Rulers Unity:

Democrats Back Down On Iraq Timetable
President Bush and congressional leaders began negotiating a second war funding bill yesterday, with Democrats offering major concession: an agreement to drop their demand for a timeline to bring troops home from Iraq.http://snipurl.com/1j93h

Insurgents' 'right to take on US'
Insurgents in Iraq are right to try to force US troops out of the country, a former British army commander has said.
Gen Sir Michael Rose also told the BBC's Newsnight programme that the US and the UK must "admit defeat" and stop fighting "a hopeless war" in Iraq.

Iraq: At Least 61 Killed In Another Deadly Day of U.S. Occupation:
"Iraqi army" killed 25 "insurgents", arrested 122 others in last 48 hours in Iraq http://www.alertnet.org/thenews/newsdesk/IBO222782.htm

“Zarqawi’s successor” Al-masri killed …Again
Al-masri... is alive in a jail in Egypt, Egyptian government moved him into another prison and keep in isolation.
This is the third time the "Green Zone" government announces that Al-Masri killed, the first one was Oct. 6, second in Feb. 7.
The "Green Zone" government means the myth behind Al-masri is killed, but the US wants to keep this fictional boogieman for coming few months or years
Egyptian newspaper almesryoon reported that a call issued by the lawyer of the so called “Zarqawi’s successor” = “Abu Ayoub Al-Masri”, for his release from prison after he has been detained since ten years. Sharif Haza’a, is in hunger strike since June last year after he was transferred to a new prison and kept in isolation, Egyptian authorities denied him from meeting his family and visitors. His lawyer still insists that Haza’a never traveled to Iraq in his life, had nothing to do with “Al-Qaeda” ...

Another 3,700 American occupation troops arrives in Baghdad

"NO MERCY": Annals of the Afghan Liberation
Chris Floyd, Empire Burlesque
...because the Terror War has... no real purpose beyond loot and power for a few -- it devalues and degrades everything it touches. To kill a human being is nothing more than stirring up a bit of dust; it's easy -- "the odds are on our side" -- it's fun, "I really enjoy it."
This is the ethos of the War on Terror ... "No mercy." "Extreme aggression." "Uncompromising force." And this is the dictum with which Bush now sends his troops into battle -- a directive that echoes almost precisely the instructions given by another "war leader" to his armies as they stood poised to launch a war of aggression based on false pretenses, some 68 years ago:

"Close your hearts to pity."

UPDATE: Yet another example of the effectiveness of the "extreme aggression" ordered by the Bush Administration in its Afghan satrapy cropped up on Sunday -- in the same province where the Marine rampage last month caused a spot of bother. AP reports:
Hundreds of angry protesters chanting "Death to Bush" demonstrated in eastern Afghanistan after six people — including a woman and a teenage girl — were reportedly killed when U.S.-led coalition and Afghan forces raided a suspected car bomb cell early Sunday...
The protest was held on the same highway where a U.S. marines convoy, fleeing after being hit by a suicide car bomb on March 4, fired indiscriminately on vehicles and pedestrians, killing 12 people.

Index on Afghanistan: April 2007: Murder in Nangarhar
The horrors in Iraq are mirrored in Afghanistan: civilian murders; harassment; no improvements in water, electricity, hospitals, schools. Now, Afghanistan has its very own 'Haditha’ - which boomerangs back to Fallujah, Iraq. Two stories on the 4 March murder disaster appeared. Carlotta Gall wrote in the New York Times 16 Civilians Killed as U.S. Troops Fire on Afghan Road. The press office blamed the [terrorists] - Lt. Col. Accetta then blamed the 'Taliban...: http://www.uruknet.de/?p=32596

U.S. Puppetmaster Karzai says Afghans losing patience over killing of civilians by occupation forces
Nearly 60 civilians have been killed in raids by U.S.-led troops in the past week, Afghan officials say, sparking four days so far of anti-American, anti-Karzai protests


U.S. AFRICOM aims to secure Africa:
AfriCom will preside over all countries on the continent except Egypt and is expected to be operational by the fall, according to Pentagon officials. They say it is needed to secure vast, lawless areas where terrorists have sought safe haven to regroup and threaten U.S. interests.

Venezuela has continued its nationalisation drive by taking control of privately run crude oil installations in the Orinoco basin that together account for one-fifth of the country’s production. http://snipurl.com/1j4yj


from Arabian Sights....

"Yes, I do believe in the inequality of races"
Le Pen 

After serving in France's colonial war in Vietnam, Le Pen was first elected to parliament in the 1950s as a representative of an extreme right-wing party whose core constituency was made up of shopkeepers and rural petit-bourgeois conservatives. When an independence movement broke out in Algeria, then a French colony, Le Pen joined with the Socialist government in voting to send troops to "maintain order."
In the kind of political gesture that became his signature, Le Pen enlisted himself. He was made a lieutenant in charge of an intelligence unit whose job was to torture and murder Algerian freedom fighters. "I tortured because it had to be done," he later bragged, after France voted an amnesty for the crimes its army committed. A boy whose father was tortured to death by Le Pen's unit when they burst into his home during the battle of Algiers found a paratrooper's knife inscribed with Le Pen's name in the courtyard. It is in a museum in Algiers today, a vivid souvenir of Le Pen's basic message. The Socialists (including the future President Mitterrand) and the traditional right led by De Gaulle all have Algerian blood on their hands. The difference is that while the traditional parties have tried to cover up these facts, Le Pen makes them his banner.

Then there is the Nazi question. Mitterrand himself, it was revealed toward the end of his life, was a minor official in the Nazi collaborationist Vichy regime during World War 2 and protected high-level Nazi collaborators afterwards. De Gaulle, Chirac's political mentor, also protected Nazi henchman--he made one of them his Paris police chief when it came time to slaughter Algerian demonstrators in the capital by the hundreds. But unlike the Socialists and the Gaullists, Le Pen publicly flaunts his close association with Vichyites, French Nazis and the German Nazi SS....

Sarkozy: The French Neocon
Ghali Hassan  -- 01 May, 2007

The Italian media compare Nicolas Sarkozy to Gianfranco Fini, the leader of the fascist Alleanza Nationale party. Sarkozy has shown to be greatly influenced by the Nazis’ ‘eugenic’ theory of ‘superior race’. It is also revealed that Sarkozy was involved in violation of international humanitarian law concerning immigrants...
Sarkozy’s main target is the marginalised Muslims and Muslim immigrants in France. Like other Western leaders, Sarkozy is banking on the current anti-Muslim plague – the Islamophobia contagious virus – in “the West”... He has called for more Nazi’s-like repression against immigrants, and he is in favour of creating a Ministry of Immigration and National Identity.
As France’s Minister of the Interior in 2005, Sarkozy was involved in illegal deportation of immigrants and engaged “in expulsion quotas and charter flights”. Sarkozy’s attacks on French youth (mostly descendants from Muslim and non-Muslim African immigrant families) demonstrating against discrimination and police violence calling them “scum” and “riff-raff”, saying that they should be hosed with "Karcherized" (pressurized water) brought him notoriety and revealed his real colour.
Sarkozy has made it public knowledge that he is in favour of the Nazis’ ideology of ‘superior race’. (See Sarkozy’s interview in Philosopie Magazine conducted by French Philosopher, Michel Onfray).....
Furthermore, Sarkozy is one of the few European politicians to support U.S. illegal invasion of Iraq and the ongoing mass murderous Occupation of that country by the U.S. and Britain. His policy on Israel and the Palestinians is U.S. policy. He said, he will “defend Israel’s security”, a deliberately constructed Western cliché designed to justify Israel’s terror, Israeli occupation of Palestinian land and dispossession of the Palestinian people from their land and their rights. He has praised France imperialist past, including France crimes against humanity. His attitude to Turkey’s membership in the European Union (EU) is: “If you let 100 million Turkish Muslims come in, what will come of it?” Of course the comment is grossly misleading and Sarkozy engages in fear mongering and spreading of the Islamophobia virus...
Ghali Hassan is an independent writer living in Australia.
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Potential terror jurors cite 9/11 doubts:
 Many potential jurors in the Jose Padilla terrorism-support case say they aren't sure who directed the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks because they don't trust reporters or the federal government.
9/11: Building 7 Was Demolished : 4 Minute Video:
 In April 2007, Italian TV broadcasted a definite proof that Building 7 was demolished .
9/11: Major Italian TV network:
 Conclusive evidence that WTC Building 7 was demolished with explosives

FISA Secret handpicked court OKs all but one domestic spying request:
FISA approved all but one of the government's requests last year to search or eavesdrop on suspected terrorists and spies, according to Justice Department data


Wednesday, 02 May 2007
by Cynthia McKinney

Former Georgia Congresswoman McKinney delivered the following speech at an immigrant workers rights rally in Los Angeles, May 1.
Two centuries ago, the United States, Latin America, and Haiti were joined in the struggle for dignity and freedom. In 1779, when a fledgling United States was fighting for its independence, a unit of Haitian volunteers answered the call and fought alongside George Washington in the Battle of Savannah.
When Haiti threw off imperial domination, it helped Latin America to become free. In fact, Simon Bolivar received supplies from Haiti for his victorious war over Spanish imperialism while Venezuela's first tri-color flag was unfurled on Haitian soil.
Enslaved Africans in the United States fled to freedom in Haiti--and also to Mexico.
Black people and the diverse peoples of Latin America share a bond of blood and the struggle for freedom. Whether we are children of Bolivar or the children of la negra Hipolita, we are one. [...]

Massive police attack on a peaceful rally in MacArthur Park brought a violent end to May Day celebrations.
LOS ANGELES, May 2, 2007
victim-of-lapd.jpg, image/jpeg, 325x432

Police violence began when police deliberately provoked marchers at Wilshire & Parkview when they drove a column of motorcycles head on into the march. Another incident at 7th & Alvarado became the flashpoint for the police attack and storming of the park. Thousands of people fled as the police fired hundreds of rounds of rubber bullets into the crowd. Entire families with young children were caught up in the attack. Many injuries from rubber bullets and batons have been reported.
Journalists from Telemundo were also injured in the police attack. Video broadcast on local TV evening news shows the reporters getting beaten, in the video a cameraman is seen knocked to the ground and his camera smashed by rioting police.
Police swept the park clear and broke up a rally estimated at over 15,000 people. People were forced into the surrounding streets and police pursued people for a number of block and then cordoned off the area. There are unconfirmed reports of incidents of street fighting with police at some locations, but most all of the people fled the park for their own safety.At a press conference later that night police chief “Baton” claimed the police attack was in response to people throwing rocks and bottles at the police, but numerous eye witnesses discount this. Victims of the attack stated the police attack came without warning and that it was the police that initiated an unprovoked attack on the May Day Celebrations.

Immigration rally attacked by police: Video:
It was a dramatic and chaotic end to what was otherwise a peaceful day here in Los Angeles. Police started to move and disperse the crowd and fired rubber bullets, dozens of rubber bullets, into the crowd. People went running and to get out of their way http://thinkprogress.org/2007/05/02/immigrant-march-disrupted-by-police/

Tape 'reveals order' to shoot Vietnam war protesters:
37-year-old recording of Kent State killings found


Hip Hop Profanity, Misogyny and Violence: Blame the Manufacturer
Wednesday, 02 May 2007
by BAR executive editor Glen Ford
The often convoluted debate over hip-hop lyrics and images frequently misses the point: mass marketed rap recordings, videos and stage acts are corporate products, and the artists are virtual employees and subcontractors of huge multinationals. Corporate control of the cultural marketplace is the real villain in this story, not artists who did not pick themselves for stardom and cannot on their own alter boardroom business models. Corporations have been usurping and reshaping Black mass culture for decades - hip-hop is just the latest product line:

"What the public sees, hears and consumes is the end product of a process that is integral to the business model crafted by top corporate executives."

Yet, unlike the swift and certain public condemnation that would crash down upon our hypothetical McDonald's-from-Da Hood, the bulk of Black community anger at hip hop products is directed at foul-behaving artists, rather than the corporate Dr. Frankensteins that created and profit from them. As the great Franz Fanon would have understood perfectly, colonized and racially oppressed peoples internalize - take ownership - of the social pathologies fostered by the oppressor. Thus, the anti-social aspects of commercial hip hop are perceived as a "Black" problem, to be overcome through internal devices (preaching and other forms of collective self-flagellation), rather than viewed as an assault by hostile, outside forces secondarily abetted by opportunists within the group.

In order for our nightmare McDonald's analogy to more closely fit the music industry reality, all the fast food chains would have to provide the same type of profane, low-life, hyper-sexualized, life-devaluing service/product: "Bitch-Burgers" from Burger King, served with "Chronic-Flavored Fries," "Ho Wings" from KFC, dipped in too-hot "187 Murder Sauce." If you wanted fast food, you'd have to patronize one or the other of these thug-themed chains. So, too, with hip hop music.

A handful of entertainment corporations exercise total control of the market, in incestuous (and illegal) conspiratorial concert with corporate-dominated radio. Successful so-called "independent" labels are most often mere subcontractors to the majors, dependent on them for record distribution and business survival. They are no more independent than the owner of a McDonald's franchise, whose product must conform to the standards set by global headquarters in Oak Brook, Illinois.

As "conscious" rapper Paris wrote in an article republished in BAR, April 25, there is no viable alternative to the corporate nexus for hip hop artists seeking to reach a mass audience. "WHAT underground?" said Paris. "Do you know how much good material is marginalized because it doesn't fit white cooperate America's ideals of acceptability? Independents can't get radio or video play anymore, at least not through commercial outlets, and most listeners don't acknowledge material that they don't see or hear regularly on the radio or on T.V."

"Successful so-called ‘independent' labels are most often mere subcontractors to the majors."

The major record labels actively suppress positive hip hop by withholding promotional support of both the above- and below-the-table variety. Hip hop journalist and activist Davey D reported that Erykah Badu and The Roots' Grammy-winning hit "You Got Me" was initially rejected by the corporate nexus due to its "overtly positive" message..."so palms were greased with the promise that key stations countrywide would get hot ‘summer jam' concert acts in exchange for airplay. According to Questlove [of The Roots], more than $1 million in cash and resources were eventually laid out for the success of that single song." (See BAR, "Commerce is Killing the Spirit of Hip-Hop," March 7.)

Black America's hip hop problem cannot be laid at the feet of a few hundred wayward performers - and should certainly not be assigned to some inherent pathology in Black culture. African Americans do not control the packaging and dissemination of their culture: corporations and their Black comprador allies and annexes do. The mass Gangsta Rap phenomenon is a boardroom invention. I know.

From 1987 to early 1994, I co-owned and hosted "Rap It Up," the first nationally syndicated radio hip hop music program. During the first half of this period, the Rap genre accomplished its national "breakout" from New York and LA, spreading to all points in between. By 1990, the major labels were preparing to swallow the independent labels that had birthed commercial hip hop, which had evolved into a wondrous mix of party, political and "street"-aggressive subsets. One of the corporate labels (I can't remember which) conducted a study that shocked the industry: The most "active" consumers of Hip Hop, they discovered, were "tweens," the demographic slice between the ages of 11 and 13.

"A whole generation has been locked in perpetual arrested social development."

The numbers were unprecedented. Even in the early years of Black radio, R&B music's most "active" consumers were at least two or three years older than "tweens." It didn't take a roomful of PhDs in human development science to grasp the ramifications of the data. Early and pre-adolescents of both genders are sexual-socially undeveloped - uncertain and afraid of the other gender. Tweens revel in honing their newfound skills in profanity; they love to curse. Males, especially, act out their anxieties about females through aggression and derision. This is the cohort for which the major labels would package their hip hop products. Commercial Gangsta Rap was born - a sub-genre that would lock a whole generation in perpetual arrested social development.

First, the artists would have to be brought into the corporate program. The term "street" became a euphemism for a monsoon of profanity, gratuitous violence, female and male hyper-promiscuity, the most vulgar materialism, and the total suppression of social consciousness. A slew of child acts was recruited to appeal more directly to the core demographic.

Women rappers were coerced to conform to the new order. A young female artist broke down at my kitchen table one afternoon, after we had finished a promotional interview. "They're trying to make me into a whore," she said, sobbing. "They say I'm not ‘street' enough." Her skills on the mic were fine. "They" were the A&R people from her corporate label.

Stories like this abounded during the transition from independent to major label control of hip hop. The thug- and -"ho"ification of the genre is now all but complete.

Blame the manufacturer.
BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be reached at Glen.Ford (at) BlackAgendaReport.com.

Wednesday, 02 May 2007
by contributing editor Dr. Edward Rhymes

While white women's sexuality is celebrated in movies and magazines, Black women acting out the same behavior are relegated to the ranks of whoredom. This gross double standard is rooted in slavery and super-exploitation of Black females, who were made prey to white male lust and depicted as sexually animalistic, in addition to bearing the burden of unremunerated labor. Conversely, "even at her most licentious," a white woman "is made to appear innocent, wholesome and strangely virginal."

"Raunchiness is deracialized when the practitioners are white."

Don Imus in his "apology" went on to say that the term "ho" didn't originate in the white community, but rather in the Black community. As the term "ho" is a variation of the word "whore" (a word not foreign to the American lexicon and indeed has been used with great frequency in the white community), that assertion does not hold water. So once again, what is endemic in American society is viewed as a specific "Black" identifier or just a "Black thing." That would be the equivalent of saying that the first person to call the television a TV undeniably invented it or the individual who first referred to the automobile as a car, now holds the patent to the creation. However, let it be understood, this truth does not excuse or exonerate sexist hip-hop from its shameful contribution to the debasement of women.

In regard to gender, there have been two, pronounced, conflicting and unjust narratives concerning female sexuality in America. Although all women who were viewed or accused as loose or promiscuous faced the ire and consternation of a (predominantly white) male-dominated society, there has always been this duplicitous racial application of the penalties incurred for committing perceived "moral" crimes against society. Historically, White women, as a category, have been portrayed as examples of self-respect, self-control, and modesty - even sexual purity - but Black women were often (and still are) portrayed as innately promiscuous, even predatory. I would like to focus on the various ways White female sexual promiscuity has been viewed, recognized and oft-times celebrated in today's media and in popular culture.

In her publication, "Female Chauvinist Pigs," New York magazine writer Ariel Levy argues that the recent trend for soft-porn styling in everything from music videos to popular TV is reducing female sexuality to its basest levels. In short: "A tawdry, tarty, cartoon-like version of female sexuality has become so ubiquitous, it no longer seems particular."

"Black women were often (and still are) portrayed as innately promiscuous, even predatory."

Kathleen Parker in her article, "Girls Gone Ridiculous," further elaborates this point: "...the message to girls the past 20 years or so has been that they can be and do anything they please. Being a stripper or a porn star is just another option among many. In some feminist circles, porn is seen as the ultimate feminist expression - women exercising autonomy over their bodies, profiting from men's desire, rather than merely being objectified by it. Self-exploitation has become the raised middle finger of women's sexual freedom." And that "raised middle-finger" in popular culture, rap videos aside, has largely been a white one.

Society, by and large, has deracialized white female sexual explicitness while at the same time strongly accentuating what is perceived as Black female promiscuity and immodesty. That message has been communicated to us time and time again on the pages of Maxim, FHM, Playboy, Penthouse and Sports Illustrated - and this list goes on. Although these mags have, in the past 10 years, featured more women of color, they are still (overwhelmingly) a celebration of white female sexual explicitness.

The ultra-celebrity accorded to white female sexual explicitness burst on the scene in the person of Marilyn Monroe. Can anyone argue that Monroe was more recognized for her acting talents than for her "natural assets?" Yet, she is regarded as a legend. The celebrity that has been granted to white women such as Anna Nicole Smith, Pamela Anderson, Carmen Elecktra, Paris Hilton and a whole host of others, is also given based upon sexual assets and not upon talent. This theme is consistent in today's raunch-infested society, but the raunchiness, once again, is deracialized when the practitioners are white. WWE women's wrestling has increased in popularity in the past few years with its predominantly white roster of sex-kittens and their highly sexualized plots and subplots. Even current and former white porn stars such as Ginger Lynn, Traci Lords and Jenna Jameson are made the topics of E! Hollywood True Stories exposes, thus giving them a place of prominence and legitimacy and without ever linking their promiscuity to her whiteness. While, in contrast, one would be hard-pressed to name as many Black women (or any other women of color) - absent of talent - who enjoy the same level of celebrity and success.

"Even at her most licentious, the white woman is made to appear innocent, wholesome and strangely virginal."

Even in, seemingly light-hearted (at least that is the impression that we've been given), popular movies we see this phenomenon played out. Risky Business, the film that introduced Tom Cruise to mainstream America, was about a young man (with the help of a spunky prostitute fleeing her pimp, played by Rebecca De Mornay) who opened up a brothel in his parent's home while they were away on vacation. Pretty Woman, the film that made Julia Roberts a megastar, essentially is a remake of the children's classic Cinderella, except this time Cinderella is a hooker. The Woody Allen (that alone gives it legitimacy) film The Mighty Aphrodite stars Mira Sorvino in the "acceptable" prostitute role (for which she won an Oscar). In the recent film, The Girl Next Door (featuring another rising star, Elisha Cuthbert) the movie centers on the relationship between an accomplished high school senior and his 19 year-old porn star (Cuthbert) neighbor. In the descriptions of the main characters in these films (the women) words such as, free-spirited, spunky, playful, spontaneous were used. I tried imagining these same films with Black main characters and I could not envision the same light-hearted response by the American public-at-large. There has yet to be a critically-acclaimed or commercially successful film, where a central character was a Black prostitute. So even when the "textbook" requirements of what constitutes being promiscuous is met, her whiteness saves the day. Even at her most licentious, she is made to appear innocent, wholesome and strangely virginal.

These movies were huge box office successes, and if one subscribes to the theory that the lyrics contained in some hip-hop songs desensitizes individuals to misogyny and normalizes sexism, then that same ethos would have to applied to the films that have essentially "deified" and normalized white female explicitness and promiscuity. So when the same messages that are being demonized in hip-hop are also found in these popular films and white-dominated music genres (but couched in the safety and familiarity of whiteness), what society is essentially telling us is that it is better PR that hip-hop needs, not a lessening of sexist themes in their music and videos.

So it has to be understood that racism is at the heart of this current debate regarding misogyny and sexism. America continues to prove (day in and day out) that it has absolutely no problem with sexual promiscuity. So what is their problem with hip-hop? It is the sheer "Blackness" of it. Historically (as well as now), there has been a fear of Black (especially Black male) sexuality. This irrational and racist fear was repeatedly used in the countless lynchings of Black men in the history of this nation (which often included castration as well). Black equals dangerous; Black equals savage; Black equals barbaric; Black equals forbidden, infected and inferior. Therefore hip-hop, like Blackness, is something that society should be, must be, protected from. It is from this context that ALL things Black have been realized and it is from this context that white female sexual explicitness has been sanitized.

The History of the "Sexploitation" of the Black Woman

The degrading images of Black women were cemented in American culture centuries previous to the first rapper uttering their first words into a microphone. The English colonists accepted the Elizabethan image of "the lusty Moor," (Moor being Elizabethan for Black) and used this and similar stereotypes to justify enslaving Blacks. In part, this was accomplished by arguing that Blacks were subhumans: intellectually inferior, culturally stunted, morally underdeveloped, and with a bestial sexuality. The hypersexualized stereotype of Black women was used during slavery as a rationalization for sexual relations between White men and Black women, especially sexual unions involving masters and slaves. The Black woman was depicted as a woman with an insatiable appetite for sex. She was not satisfied with Black men. It was claimed that the female slave desired sexual relations with White men; therefore, White men did not have to rape Black women. James Redpath, who was of all things an abolitionist, wrote that slave women were "gratified by the criminal advances of Saxons." This view is contradicted by Frederick Douglass, the abolitionist and former slave, who claimed that the "slave woman is at the mercy of the fathers, sons or brothers of her master." Douglass's account is consistent with the accounts of other former slaves. In Narrative of the Life and Adventures of Henry Bibb, An American Slave, Bibb tells of how his master forced a young slave to be his son's concubine; later, Bibb and his wife were sold to a Kentucky trader who forced Bibb's wife into prostitution.

"The hypersexualized stereotype of Black women was used during slavery as a rationalization for sexual relations between White men and Black women"

Slave women were property; therefore, legally they could not be raped. Often slavers would offer gifts or promises of reduced labor if the slave women would consent to sexual relations. Nevertheless, as John D'Emilio and Estelle B. Freedman state in Intimate Matters: A Sexual History of Sexuality In America, "the rape of a female slave was probably the most common form of interracial sex" during that time.

The idea that Black women were naturally and unavoidably sexually immoral was reinforced by several features of the slavery institution. Slaves, whether on the auction block or offered privately for sale, were often stripped naked and physically examined. In premise, this was done to ensure that they were healthy, able to reproduce, and, equally important, to look for whipping scars - the presence of which implied that the slave was rebellious. In practice, the stripping and touching of slaves had a sexually exploitative, sometimes sadistic function. Nakedness, especially among women in the 18th and 19th centuries, implied lack of civility, morality, and sexual restraint even when the nakedness was forced. Slaves, of both sexes and all ages, often wore few clothes or clothes so ragged that their legs, thighs, and chests were exposed. Conversely, Whites, especially women, wore clothing over most of their bodies. The contrast between the clothing reinforced the belief that White women were civilized, modest, and sexually pure, whereas Black women were crude, immodest, and sexually deviant.

Black slave women were also frequently pregnant. The institution of slavery depended on Black women to supply future slaves. By every method imaginable, slave women were "encouraged" to reproduce. Deborah Gray White, in Ar'n't I a Woman?, speaks of major periodicals carrying articles detailing optimal conditions under which bonded women were known to reproduce, and the merits of a particular "breeder" were often the topic of parlor or dinner table conversations. Gray White goes on to say "the fact that something so personal and private became a matter of public discussion prompted one ex-slave to declare that ‘women wasn't nothing but cattle.' Once reproduction became a topic of public conversation, so did the slave woman's sexual activities."

The portrayal of Black women as sexually promiscuous began in slavery, extended through the Jim Crow period, and continues today. Although the Mammy distortion was the dominant popular cultural image of Black women from slavery to the 1950s, the depiction of Black women as sexually licentious was common in American material culture. There was practically no item that was considered out-of-bounds in depicting the Black woman as immodest and lacking in sexual restraint as ordinary articles such as ashtrays, postcards, sheet music, fishing lures, drinking glasses, featured scantily-clad Black women. For example, a metal nutcracker, from the 1930's, depicts a topless Black woman. The nut is placed under her skirt, in her crotch, and crushed. Were sexually explicit items such as these made in the image of white women? Yes. However, they were never mainstreamed like the objects that caricatured Black women. The seamy novelty objects depicting white women were sold on the down-low, the QT and always hush-hush. An analysis of these racist items also reveals that Black female children were sexually objectified. Black girls, with the faces of pre-teenagers, were drawn with adult sized buttocks, which were exposed. They were naked, scantily clad, or hiding seductively behind towels, blankets, trees, or other objects.

"Black girls, with the faces of pre-teenagers, were drawn with adult sized buttocks, which were exposed."

As we enter the late 60's and early 70's the vestiges of the old Mammy and Picaninny caricatures were replaced with the supersexualized female (as well as male) protagonists and heroines - often in the form of prostitutes or women using sex as a means to the greater end of achieving a vendetta. These films are now referred to as "blaxploitation" movies. These movies were supposedly steeped in the Black experience. However, many were produced and directed by Whites. Author and film historian Daniel J. Leab in his narrative, Sambo to Superspade: The Black Experience in Motion Pictures, wrote: "Whites packaged, financed, and sold these films, and they received the bulk of the big money." The world depicted in blaxploitation movies included corrupt police and politicians, pimps, drug dealers, violent criminals, prostitutes, and whores. In the main, these movies were low-budget, formulaic interpretations of Black life by White producers, directors, and distributors. Black actors and actresses, many unable to find work in mainstream movies, found work in blaxploitation movies. Black patrons supported these movies because they showed Blacks fighting the "White establishment," resisting the "pigs" (police), in control of their fate and sexual beings.

There are compelling parallels between this period and where we find ourselves today in regard to sexist hip-hop. Parallels such as the erroneous perceptions that certain images were and are indeed steeped in the true Black experience: who controlled and controls the production and distribution of the "black" product; the preeminence of distorted sexual roles; and who disproportionately benefits, financially, from this destructive typecasting. It is a painful reality that the lack of real opportunities can sometimes tempt us to be co-facilitators in our own cultural demise, as we engage in endeavors that aid in the buttressing and reinforcement of pernicious and racist stereotypes.

One of our strengths as Black people (contrary to popular opinion) is our ability to engage in deep and insightful self-critique - and in that spirit we must take responsibility for our role in this. Toni Morrison, in addressing the dynamics of racial and gender internalized oppression in her novel The Bluest Eye, stated that it was "as though some mysterious all-knowing master had said, ‘You are ugly people.' . . . [a]nd they (Black folk) took the ugliness in their hands, threw it as a mantle over them, and went about the world with it. And we as Black people (male & female), have now taken ownership, or taken it in our hands as it were, this deplorable legacy and have worn this disgraceful and destructive garment proudly; and we have indeed gone about the world with it. We in the Black community who have consumed, purchased and repeated the words and images; we, Black male and female exploiters of Black sexuality, who have participated in this dishonor are like the Laodecians who were rebuked by Christ because they were convinced that they were rich and increased with goods and had need of nothing without understanding; without realizing that they were blind, wretched, miserable and naked. And like Esau, we have gave up our God-given birthright that entitled us to something better, for a mess of pottage; for husks that satiate us for only a little while; with nothing to show for the bitter and foolish trade but pain, regret and longing."

"The lack of real opportunities can sometimes tempt us to be co-facilitators in our own cultural demise."

Seeing that her womb supplied the steady flow of slaves that facilitated the accumulation of wealth for plantation owners and the various industries in this country (rice, cotton, tobacco and sugar to name a few), America was built, in large part, on the sexual exploitation of the Black woman. With the coffers of the major corporations that own the record labels and the music video networks, bursting from the profits of this new millennium's minstrel show, it is a malicious irony of epic and tragic proportions that we have now come full circle.

What The Market Will Bear

It is a multibillion-dollar industry, accounting for one of every five records sold in America. Eighty percent of buyers are white. The music that now generates over $10 billion per year (according to Forbes magazine) was initially ignored by corporate America. Now corporations use the phrases, the images, and the sounds of hip-hop to sell everything from McDonald's dollar menus to Cadillacs.

Although the faces of hip-hop are predominantly Black and the Black community birthed the music, who are the real power-players at Universal Music and Viacom that are pushing the green or red button on what gets produced and promoted in hip-hop? Dr. Jared Ball in his composition, "Hip-Hop, Mass Media & 21st Century Colonization," states: "Given the societal need and function of mass media and popular culture, all that is popular is fraudulent. Popularity is in almost every case an intentionally constructed fabrication of what it claims to represent. Too few who comment on the lamentable condition of today's popular hip-hop seem to grasp this, the political nature of the nation's media system, nor the political function that system serves. Hip-hop is often taken out of the existing context of political struggle, repression, or the primacy of a domestic/neo-colonialism in the service of which mass media play a (the?) leading role. Media, often incorrectly defined by their technologies, are the primary conduits of ideology or worldview and must be seen as such. Therefore, their highly consolidated ownership and content management structure (corporate interlocking boards of directors, advertisers, stockholders, etc.) cannot be understood absent their ability to disseminate a consciousness they themselves sanction and mass produce. Nowhere is this more clearly demonstrable than in hip-hop."

"Hip-hop is often taken out of the existing context of political struggle, repression, or the primacy of a domestic/neo-colonialism."

Entertainment has always been a sponsor/market-driven entity. This is important to remember as a multitude begins to mourn Don Imus as the latest "sacrifice" on the altar of the god called political correctness, their outrage is suspect at best and hypocritical at worst. To say that a campaign of this sort has never been lodged against a rap artist deemed guilty of derogatory attitudes towards Black women is not supported by history or the facts. In 2002 Pepsi-Cola pulled a national, 30-second commercial featuring multiplatinum rapper Ludacris from the air after Fox News Channel's host Bill O'Reilly called for a boycott of the company. O'Reilly characterized Pepsi as "immoral" for using the rapper, whom he described as a rap thug. O'Reilly, on his program, read several of the rapper's lyrics, which he said emphasized a lifestyle that included getting intoxicated, selling drugs, fighting people, and degrading women - by the way, in all my research, not once did I discover that Ludacris was ever sued for sexual harassment or charged with sexual misconduct. The same cannot be said of Mr. O'Reilly and yet he still holds a position as a moral authority with millions of Americans.

Pepsi-Cola released a statement explaining its decision to pull the ad, "We have a responsibility to listen to our consumers and customers, and we've heard from a number of people that were uncomfortable with our association with this artist. We've decided to discontinue our ad campaign with this artist and we're sorry that we've offended anyone."

Let's fast-forward two years to 2004 when Whoopi Goldberg's sexual puns on President Bush's name at a John Kerry fundraiser got her fired as spokeswoman for Slim-Fast weight-loss products. The West Palm Beach, Fla.-based maker of diet aids pulled the ad campaign featuring Goldberg stating that it regretted that Goldberg's remarks "offended some of their consumers." Contrast the rapidity of Pepsi and Slim Fast in dispatching Ludacris and Whoopi, with the decades-long, accommodating, look-the-other-way attitude of sponsors and networks when it comes to individuals such as Imus.

Armstrong Williams on the MSNBC news program Hardball (4/11/07), said that Don Imus should not be fired and "the marketplace should make that decision." And alas, the marketplace did make that decision when the sponsors pulled out en masse. If that is the criterion that we are to use, then what do we do when hip-hop's/rap's vast popularity is determined by that same marketplace - and as was stated previously, that purchasing marketplace is 80% white and the company executives making the final decision as to what gets made and what gets played are predominantly white.

If corporations want to push anti-woman and sexist music this year, millions of dollars will be pumped into the budget of whatever rapper is ignorant enough to write the lyrics. Sure the artists can choose to make something different. They just won't have the backing that others do who agree to play the game. So, by all means hold hip-hop (and ALL artists of ALL genres) who are guilty of producing the misogynistic and sexist messages in their lyrics and videos morally and politically accountable. However, although they may be guilty of providing the supply, it is the American culture that created the demand.

Dr. Edward Rhymes, author of When Racism Is Law & Prejudice Is Policy, is an internationally-recognized authority in the areas of critical race theory and Black studies. Please view his website: Rhymes Reasons. He can be reached at Edward@rhymesworld.com

If you missed 'the digest' collection of material posted 4/23/7 see: A "Secure" Govt. & Corporate Controlled Internet Under Construction, Microsoft a Key Partner: "The Dangers of Digital Imprimatur" http://www.pwgd.com/blog/lb/ or in the 'archives' section of http://www.burbankdigest.com/

The following submitted by a techie. In the tech world the big propaganda pitch about exciting and profitable tech-improvement obscures the politics behind it and its orwellian implications:

"TRUSTED COMPUTING" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K1H7omJW4TI


Here we will try to untangle the whole subject and concentrate us on the core points. Most it's impossible to understand the network of technologies, companies and laws at a whole.

The technology:
TCPA stands for Trusted Computing Platform Alliance. For the technology we will speak from TCP (The trusted computing platform). This plans that every computer will have a TPM (Trusted Platform Module), also known as Fritz-Chip, built-in. At later development stages, these functions will be directly included into CPUs, graphiccards, harddisks, soundcards, bios and so on. This will secure that the computer is in a TCPA-conform state and that he checks that it's always in this state. This means: On the first level comes the hardware, on the second comes TCPA and then comes the user. The complete communication works with a 2048 bit strong encryption, so it's also secure enough to make it impossible to decrypt this in realtime for a longer time. This secures that the TCPA can prevent any unwanted software and hardware. The long term result will be that it will be impossible to use hardware and software that's not approved by the TCPA. Presumably there will be high costs to get this certification and that these would be too much for little and mid-range companies. Therefore open-source and freeware would be condemned to die, because without such a certification the software will simply not work. In the long term only the big companies would survive and could control the market as they would like.
Some could think that it should be possible to get around this security. But probably they would be proved they're wrong. Until now there're no such hardware-implemented security systems and actual security systems have to work offline. This would be changed with TCP. The rights and licenses would be central managed by the TCPA (USA?). And as soon a violation is noticed, they will get notified. Read the chapter "The bills" to get an overview about the possible resulting consequences.

The companies:
The TCPA was founded 1999 by Compaq, HP, IBM, Intel and Microsoft. But in the meantime around 200 companies joined them. You will find Adobe, AMD, Fujitsu-Siemens, Gateway, Motorola, Samsung, Toshiba and many other well known companies. IBM already sells first desktops and notebooks with integrated TPM.

The bills:
In the USA there's a planed bill, the so called CBDPTA (Consumer Broadband and Digital Television Promotion Act). First it was called SSSCA (Security Systems Standards and Certification Act). The new name reads much more harmless. Looks like the first name made it too easy to discover the purpose of this bill.
This bill plans to legally force secure (TCPA-conform) systems. So in the USA it would then not be allowed to buy or sell systems that are not TCPA-conform. Passing this law would be punished with up to 5 years of prision and up to $500.000 fine. The same would apply for development of "open" software. Open means that it would work on systems that're not TCPA-conform.
Even if this bill would only valid in the USA it would have catastrophical effects worldwide. Because US companies are not allowed to develop and sell "unsecure" software, others would have to jump onto the TCP-train, so they would give total control over themself to the TCPA (USA?), or they would have to live completely without software and harware from US-companies. No Windows, Solaris, MacOS, Photoshop, Winamp or to say it short: The largest part of all software that's used on this planet would not be usable.

The consequences:
Thus you're able to determine the consequences for your own situation, we kept this section very generell. But it should be easy to determine the resulting restrictions that would apply for you.
The informational self-determination isn't existing anymore, it's not possible to save, copy, create, program, ..., the data like you want. This applies for privates as for companies
The free access to the IT/Software market is completely prevented for anyone except the big companies, the market as we know it today will get completely destroyed
Restrictions in the usage of owned hardware would apply
The liberty of opinion and the free speech on the internet would finally be eliminated
The own rights while using IT-technologies are history.
The national self-determination of the der particular countries would be fully in the hands of the USA
Probably the world would break into two digital parts (Countries that express against TCPA)

If you now want to read some more in-depth about all this, you should take a look at Ross Andersons detailed FAQ.

Lucky Greens Defcon X slides (PDF)
Ross Andersons TCPA/Palladdium-FAQ
Heise Newsticker: Totale Copyright-Kontroller per US-Gesetz (German)
Experten warnen vor massiven Problemen bei TCPA und Palladium (German)


Spying on Americans
May 2, 2007
For more than five years, President Bush authorized government spying on phone calls and e-mail to and from the United States without warrants. He rejected offers from Congress to update the electronic eavesdropping law, and stonewalled every attempt to investigate his spying program.
Suddenly, Mr. Bush is in a hurry. He has submitted a bill that would enact enormous, and enormously dangerous, changes to the 1978 law on eavesdropping....
his bill grants immunity to telecommunications companies that cooperated in five years of illegal eavesdropping. It also strips the power to hear claims against the spying program from all courts except the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, which meets in secret.

According to the administration, the bill contains “long overdue” FISA modifications to account for changes in technology. The only example it offered was that an e-mail sent from one foreign country to another that happened to go through a computer in the United States might otherwise be missed....
Moreover, FISA has been updated dozens of times in the last 29 years. In 2000, Lt. Gen. Michael Hayden, who ran the National Security Agency then, said it “does not require amendment to accommodate new communications technologies.” And since 9/11, FISA has had six major amendments.
The measure would not update FISA; it would gut it. It would allow the government to collect vast amounts of data at will from American citizens’ e-mail and phone calls. The Center for National Security Studies said it might even be read to permit video surveillance without a warrant.[...]

Pentagon Redirects Its Research Dollars
April 2, 2005
AN FRANCISCO, April 1 - The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency at the Pentagon - which has long underwritten open-ended "blue sky" research by the nation's best computer scientists - is sharply cutting such spending at universities, researchers say, in favor of financing more classified work and narrowly defined projects that promise a more immediate payoff.
Hundreds of research projects supported by the agency, known as Darpa, have paid off handsomely in recent decades, leading not only to new weapons, but to commercial technologies from the personal computer to the Internet. The agency has devoted hundreds of millions of dollars to basic software research, too, including work that led to such recent advances as the Web search technologies that Google and others have introduced....

University researchers, usually reluctant to speak out, have started quietly challenging the agency's new approach. They assert that Darpa has shifted a lot more work in recent years to military contractors, adopted a focus on short-term projects while cutting support for basic research, classified formerly open projects as secret and placed new restrictions on sharing information.
This week, in responding to a query from the staff of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Darpa officials acknowledged for the first time a shift in focus. They revealed that within a relatively steady budget for computer science research that rose slightly from $546 million in 2001 to $583 million last year, the portion going to university researchers has fallen from $214 million to $123 million....

University scientists assert that the changes go even further than what Darpa has disclosed. As financing has dipped, the remaining research grants come with yet more restrictions, they say, often tightly linked to specific "deliverables" that discourage exploration and serendipitous discoveries.

Many grants also limit the use of graduate students to those who hold American citizenship, a rule that hits hard in computer science, where many researchers are foreign.

The shift at Darpa has been noted not just by those researchers directly involved in computing technologies, but by those in other fields supported by the agency...

"The key is a focus on high-risk, high-payoff research," Jan Walker, a Darpa spokeswoman, stated in an e-mail message. Given the threat from terrorism and the demands on troops in Iraq, she wrote, Darpa is rightly devoting more attention to "quick reaction" projects that draw on the fruits of earlier science and technology to produce useful prototypes as soon as possible....

The transformation of Darpa has been led by Anthony J. Tether, a Stanford-educated electrical engineer who has had a long career moving between executive positions at military contractors and the Pentagon....
"The network has now become as vital as the weapons themselves," Dr. Tether said in an appearance before the advisory committee last year, testifying that secrecy had become more essential for a significant part of the agency's work....
Despite the complaints, some pioneering researchers support the changes being driven by Dr. Tether and say they are necessary to prepare the nation for a long battle against elusive enemies.
"There are pressures and demands on Darpa to be relevant," said Robert Kahn, a former Darpa administrator who is now president of the Corporation for National Research Initiatives in Reston, Va. "People think it should stay the same, but times have changed."...

Pentagon Surveillance Plan Described as Less Invasive
Published: May 7, 2003
...The Pentagon official, Dr. Tony Tether, director of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, also known as Darpa, told a House Government Reform subcommittee that ''we are not developing a system to profile the American public.''
Dr. Tether offered a vision of the program that sounded much less threatening than the description given last year by John M. Poindexter, the retired admiral who is in charge of the project. Mr. Poindexter told a California audience then that ''we must become much more efficient and more clever in the way we find new sources of data, mine information from the new and old, make it available for analysis, convert it to knowledge and create actionable options.'' He described a system that could tap into Internet mail, culling records, credit card and banking transactions and travel documents....
Dr. Tether said he hoped that the agency's impending report on the project, due on May 20, would calm public and Congressional fears....
Dr. Teher said that, ''We knew that the American public and their elected officials must have confidence that their liberties will not be violated before they would accept this kind of technology.''

A military agency spends billions on seemingly fantastic projects to ensure U.S. [battlefield] supremacy.
September 18, 2000
Darpa gave birth to the Internet in the late 1960's. Other projects helped create many of the nation's most impressive computers, the chips used in cellular phones and vital networking technologies like the ability to send simultaneous signals of many wavelengths down a single fiber optic cable....

What's next?...

''B2B and enterprise software are low-hanging fruit technically compared to defense needs,'' said Shankar Sastry, director of the agency's Information Technology Office, referring to products that allow businesses to interact with each other over the Internet and software that allows many parts of an enterprise from finance to production to marketing to share data.
Darpa studies are looking at how to create and manage networks of up to 100,000 components that must be quickly able to shift how they communicate. Some components may periodically change functions -- a device, for instance, might be monitoring radio signals at one moment and jamming them the next.

Similarly, the agency is financing research on networks of information users. It wants the Defense Department to be able to set up coalitions of up to 100 allies capable of sharing secure information and coordinating logistics within minutes. Just as important, it wants to be able to cut a party off a network instantly and notify all other members.
In both cases, the need for artificial intelligence is obvious. Even if the ability of humans to interact easily with computers were vastly improved by, say, flawless voice recognition software, the amount of information flooding in would be overwhelming. The agency's response includes research on software that can screen widely diverse data sources for relevant trends, automatically reshape networks and write new programs to respond rapidly to emerging needs.

One project partly addressing such concerns is the effort to develop so-called Darpa agent markup language. D.A.M.L., as the language is known in technical circles, would would create a universal format for telling computers what kind of information is in a data source. It would allow Internet search machines to extract data not just from the World Wide Web but from computer programs, sensors and other machines.
The computer language embodies one of the major changes the agency has confronted in adapting to the information age. While much of the agency's work still focuses on technology that it would just as soon see stay in American military hands, there are a growing number of developments that will go nowhere unless they also permeate civilian life.


... In response to the discovery of the son of the Total Information Awareness, Tangram, described as “a program in which former TIA contractors build on existing TIA research to create a new, enhanced form of the program,” according to Justin Rood, the ACLU tells us the state is “misdirecting resources towards this kind of fanciful, science-fiction project… while neglecting the basics” of what Shaun Waterman of the UPI calls “good counter-terrorist detective work.”
In fact, since the vast majority of terrorists out there are working directly or indirectly for the Pentagon, CIA, MI6, or Mossad, no “good counter-terrorist detective work” is required. John Negroponte, CFR member and former overseer of the El Aguacate torture and murder dungeon in Honduras, now Director of National Intelligence, is building upon Iran-Contra criminal John Poindexter’s Total Information Awareness, a “closed-loop” snoop system supposedly closed down on October 1, 2003.

Of course, cutting edge snoop technology and programs are never closed down and TIA lived on, thanks to the NSA under the classified annex to the 2004 DOD Appropriations Act. It now appears TIA finally surfaced in Negroponte’s office and is called Tangram. It is “a computer system capable of data-mining huge amounts of information about everyday events to discern patterns that look like terrorist planning,” although “officials have said it is being tested without using any data about Americans.”

Naturally, the truth is the exact opposite—the system is designed specifically to data-mine “huge amounts of information about everyday events to discern patterns that look like terrorist planning,” that is to say planning, or for that matter even discussion, by people opposed to the unitary decidership of Bush and the neocons.

In effect, according to the Air Force Materiel Command, Tangram compiles “a set of disjointed technologies that are difficult for non-technical users to apply, cumbersome to configure into a self-configuring, continuously operating system” and will, with enough money and jobbing out to the usual suspects (Booz Allen Hamilton, 21st Century Technologies, and SRI International) create “a fully automated, continuously operating, intelligence analysis support system” designed to snare terrorists, that is to say anybody who organizes against or merely talks about opposing our rulers.

Tangram “will also include ‘collective inferencing techniques’—a way of scoring whole populations on a kind of suspicion index,” according to Waterman of the UPI. In other words, if you are guilty of dissing Bush or Rumsfeld on MySpace or a far-flung forum, chances are your family, friends, and associates will be flagged as possible miscreants as well. “This technique is capable of making simultaneous inferences (scores) about large numbers of likely interrelated entities in large data collections,”...
According to Capitol Hill Blue’s sources, Bush told his new head of the CIA, Gen. Michael Hayden, “to ‘take whatever steps necessary’ to monitor Americans 24/7 by listening in on their phone calls, bugging their homes and offices, probing their private lives, snooping into their financial records and watching their travel habits…. Hayden, who oversaw the National Security Agency’s questionable monitoring of phone calls and emails of Americas, plans to consolidate much of the country’s domestic spying into a new desk at the CIA, calling it a ‘domestic terrorism prevention’ operation. The desk will oversee not only NSA’s increased monitoring of electronic communications by Americans but also [DARPA] the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s ‘terrorist information awareness’ program that monitors travel and financial activities by Americans by gathering real-time data from banks, airlines, travel agencies and credit card companies.”
In short, this data will be rolled into Tangram and will be accessed by the CIA, even though the agency is supposedly forbidden by its charter from domestic snooping. Add to this NSA-CIA-FBI mix the Pentagon with its Counterintelligence Field Activity, or CIFA, and you have a recipe for robust police state surveillance.

Last October, the Senate Intelligence Committee “approved broad-ranging legislation…. that would allow the Pentagon and other U.S. intelligence agencies greater access to federal government databases on U.S. citizens, and another granting the DIA new exemptions from disclosing any ‘operational files’ under the Freedom of Information Act,” Newsweek reported.

In 1976, Morton Halperin, Jerry Berman, Robert Borosage, and Christine Marwick wrote in the introduction of the book, The Lawless State: The crimes of the U.S. Intelligence Agencies, “investigations have shown that every intelligence agency had one or more surveillance programs that spied on law-abiding American citizens, in violation of the laws, the Constitution, and the traditions of the country.”

The number of citizens who have been the objects of the professional voyeurs is truly staggering. The FBI headquarters in Washington alone has over 500,000 domestic intelligence files, each typically containing information on more than one group or individual. Nearly a quarter of a million first-class letters were opened and photographed by the CIA in the United States between 1953 and 1973 producing a computerized index of nearly one and one-half million names. The ClA’s six-year Operation CHAOS produced an index of 300,000 individuals. Uncounted millions of international telegrams and phone calls have been intercepted by the National Security Agency. Some 100,000 Americans are enshrined in Army intelligence dossiers. The Internal Revenue Service created files on more than 11,000 individuals and groups. During a three-year period, from 1971-74, political grand juries subpoenaed between 1,000 and 2,000 persons.

In addition, both at home and abroad, the intelligence agencies went beyond the mere collection of information. They developed programs to disrupt, “neutralize,” and destroy those perceived as enemies-as threats to the political order at home and abroad. The CIA’s covert action programs around the world were paralleled by the FBI’s COINTELPRO at home, by the misuse of the IRS and the grand jury-all were part of a purposeful effort to live up to the mandate of a classified report of the 1954 Hoover Commission on Government Organization that “we must learn to subvert, sabotage, and destroy our enemies by more clever, more sophisticated and more effective methods than those used against us.” Thus the illegalities exposed by the investigations were not isolated incidents of zealous agents exceeding their authority in the field, however frequently such may occur. Rather, the abuses were ongoing, bureaucratic programs, often continuing over decades, involving hundreds of officials, aimed at thousands of citizens, and ordered and approved at the highest level of the executive branch of government.

In the years since Halperin, Berman, Borosage, and Marwick wrote their book, computer technology has advanced exponentially, increasing the effectiveness and precision of the “professional voyeurs” to not only skulk through our houses, papers, and effects, but also “subvert, sabotage, and destroy” the opposition[...]

5/1/7 MAYDAY! Operation Contain China; The Militarization of Science: "Mind Wars:Brain Research; DARPA


Report says terror attacks up sharply
Terrorist attacks worldwide shot up more than 25 percent last year, killing 40 percent more people than in 2005, particularly in Iraq where extremists used chemical weapons and suicide bombers to target crowds, the State Department said Monday.

U.S. Cites 91 Percent Rise In Terrorist Acts in Iraq:
The number of terrorism incidents in Iraq -- and resulting deaths, injuries and kidnappings -- skyrocketed from 2005 to 2006, according to statistics released by U.S. counterterrorism officials yesterday.

Interview with Iraqi Resistance Member
By Dahr Jamail
** Dahr Jamail's MidEast Dispatches **
Abu Mohammed: I am a representative of the Ba'ath Party and Iraq's National Resistance.

DJ: Western corporate media portrays most of the violence in Iraq as if it is the Iraqis who are killing each other with suicide car bombs in markets, etc. What is your opinion of Iraqi on Iraqi violence?

AM: As a matter of fact, since the beginning of the occupation, the Iraqi resistance has been doing their operations only against American troops and their allies. Iraqis killing each other and civilians dying is the fault of the invaders because there are too many parties and all these parties formed militias. Some of these are supported by the Americans, some by the Zionists, and some by the Iranians. But the job of the Iraqi resistance is to get rid of the American occupation and they are not killing civilians.

DJ: Then who is responsible for killing the civilians?

AM: The militias and invaders. The occupation forces and militias sponsored by the Americans, the militias backed by the Americans, Zionists, and Iranians. The goal from this is to make the resistance appear bad, as well as simply to kill Iraqis....
The Iraqi resistance is a patriotic resistance by the Iraqis. It has many groups from many sects of Islam and it's not exclusively in one area of Iraq. There are so many parts of the resistance. Some are Ba'athists, some are Islamists....

DJ: Who is funding and arming the Iraqi resistance?

AM: In Iraq there are so many weapons. The Ba'ath provided enough to fight for the next 15 years. About funding, Iraq is a rich country with many rich people, so we can get the funding from inside of Iraq.

DJ: What are the demands of the Iraqi resistance?

AM: We declare liberation and independence. We do not have demands. We have rights. We want Iraq's rights. Our demand is to give back Iraq's rights. The rights of our people include the following:

1. All parts of the Iraqi resistance should be the exclusive representatives for Iraqis.
2. An immediate withdrawal of American forces without conditions.
3. Full compensation for both Iraq and Iraqis for those who have been killed since the sanctions starting in 1991 until now. During the sanctions, 1.7 million Iraqis were killed. And according to the Lancet report, 655,000 have been killed, and by now possibly even one million.
4. The release of everyone in prisons.
5. Canceling all the current political procedures and all the 100 Bremer Orders legislation done during the Iraqi Governing Council because according to international law, it is illegal to make any political and legislative action while the country is under occupation.
6. Canceling the UN legislation that has been passed since the sanctions.
7. Putting all the traitors, those who betrayed Iraq, and those who are allies of the Americans into trials.

These are the rights of the country and if the Americans and their allies respect these rights, we can sit together. Not to negotiate these rights, but to plan the withdrawal and discuss the implementation of these rights. Also, the resistance will go on no matter how long it takes or how much it costs, until there is a withdrawal....the so-called conflict between the Shia and Sunni is not something real. It is due to political goals. Shia, Sunni and Kurds have been living in Iraq for over a thousand years together and there have not been conflicts such as these we see today. This conflict is growing because of the invaders. And when the occupiers, invaders and their allies withdraw from Iraq this conflict will end.

Report says terror attacks up sharply
Terrorist attacks worldwide shot up more than 25 percent last year, killing 40 percent more people than in 2005, particularly in Iraq where extremists used chemical weapons and suicide bombers to target crowds, the State Department said Monday.

from Arabian Sights....
Gamila Zahran
gzahran (at) wanadoo.fr
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"...Advocates of the proposed boycott have been calling the Beijing Games the “Genocide Olympics"...
the digest note: Capitalist China is seen by U.S. as its major geostrategic rival to global 'full spectrum dominance': every opportunity is being used to wage propaganda war against China from all angles to reduce its growing regional power and influence against U.S. hegemonic juggernaut

the U.S., worst state terrorist country in modern history dares pretend...
China fails to improve human rights
BEIJING -- China has failed to live up to promises to improve human rights for the 2008 Olympics in Beijing despite reforms to the death penalty system and more freedoms for foreign reporters, Amnesty International said in a report Monday.

How the "Stop Darfur" Movement Aids the US Drive for Hegemony
George Wright
Over the past six months in the United States, there have been calls for International Olympic Committee member-nations to boycott the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Beijing will host the twentieth-ninth Olympic Games August 8-24, 2008. The stated objective for the proposed boycott is to coerce China to pressure the Sudanese Government of National Unity-dominated by the Islamic-oriented National Congress Party to cooperate with the deployment of United Nations peacekeeping forces in the Darfur region of Sudan.

Advocates of the proposed boycott have been calling the Beijing Games the “Genocide Olympics"
Why is the Beijing Olympic Games being linked to the Darfur Crisis?

The Darfur conflict is actually part of a complex series of regional civil wars abetted by “Big Power” intervention...
The “Save Darfur” movement has utilized the corporate-media, the internet, Congressional lobbying, and political demonstrations to make its case for United States-led military intervention. This form of intervention is referred to as “humanitarian intervention". The concept was used to rationalize the United States/NATO intervention in Kosovo in 1998, allegedly aimed to prevent Serbia form committing “genocide” of the Kosovarians. The implication of this concept is that the United States can militarily intervene for “human rights” purposes...

...the United States will continue to militarize the African continent in its effort to gain complete control over the continent’s natural resources. For example, in December 2006, the United States announced the formation of an African Central Command (AFRICOM), which will be fully operational by September 2008. The mission of United States “regional commands” are to “shape the environment, respond to the full spectrum of crises, and prepare for the future.” This reality will only heighten competition with China over access to energy resources and markets throughout Africa. Even though a boycott of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games is highly improbable a confrontation between the United States and China over global resources is likely in the future. The Beijing Olympic boycott proposal may represent the opening volley in that inevitable confrontation.
George Wright is the author of The Destruction of a Nation: United States Foreign Policy Towards Angola since 1945 (Pluto Press, 1997) and Stan Wright-Track Coach: Forty Years in the “ Good Old Boy Network” (Pacifica Sports Research Institute, 2005). He in Professor Emeritus, the Political Science Department, California State University, Chico. His research interests include: International Political Economy, African International Relations, and the Politics of International Sport.

liberal 'peace' activists as useful imperialist tools...
at “Save Darfur” demonstrations, many 'peace activists' carried signs which read:
“Out of Iraq; Into Sudan”...

Containing China

... Bush and his top aides entered the White House in early 2001 with a clear strategic objective: to resurrect the permanent-dominance doctrine spelled out in the Defense Planning Guidance (DPG) for fiscal years 1994-1999, the first formal statement of U.S. strategic goals in the post-Soviet era. According to the initial official draft of this document, as leaked to the press in early 1992, the primary aim of U.S. strategy would be to bar the rise of any future competitor that might challenge America's overwhelming military superiority.

"Our first objective is to prevent the re-emergence of a new rival ... that poses a threat on the order of that posed formerly by the Soviet Union," the document stated. Accordingly, "we [must] endeavor to prevent any hostile power from dominating a region whose resources would, under consolidated control, be sufficient to generate global power."

When initially made public, this doctrine was condemned by America's allies and many domestic leaders as being unacceptably imperial as well as imperious, forcing the first President Bush to water it down; but the goal of perpetuating America's sole-superpower status has never been rejected by administration strategists. In fact, it initially became the overarching principle for U.S. military policy when the younger Bush assumed the presidency in 2001.

When first enunciated in 1992, the permanent-dominancy doctrine was non-specific as to the identity of the future challengers whose rise was to be prevented through coercive action. At that time, U.S. strategists worried about a medley of potential rivals, including Russia, Germany, India, Japan and China; any of these, it was thought, might emerge in the decades to come as would-be superpowers, and so all would have to be deterred from moving in that direction. By the time the second Bush administration came into office, however, the pool of potential rivals had been narrowed in elite thinking to just one: the People's Republic of China. Only China, it was claimed, possessed the economic and military capacity to challenge the United States as an aspiring superpower; and so perpetuating U.S. global predominance meant containing Chinese power.

The imperative of containing China was first spelled out in a systematic way by Condoleezza Rice while she served as a foreign policy advisor to then Gov. George W. Bush during the 2000 presidential campaign. In a much-cited article in the journal Foreign Affairs, she suggested that the PRC, as an ambitious rising power, would inevitably challenge vital U.S. interests. "China is a great power with unresolved vital interests, particularly concerning Taiwan," she wrote. "China also resents the role of the United States in the Asia-Pacific region."

For these reasons, she stated, "China is not a 'status quo' power but one that would like to alter Asia's balance of power in its own favor. That alone makes it a strategic competitor, not the 'strategic partner' the Clinton administration once called it." It was essential, she argued, to adopt a strategy that would prevent China's rise as regional power. In particular, "the United States must deepen its cooperation with Japan and South Korea and maintain its commitment to a robust military presence in the region." Washington should also "pay closer attention to India's role in the regional balance" and bring that country into an anti-Chinese alliance system.

... this article developed the allow-no-competitors doctrine of the 1992 DPG into the strategy now being implemented by the Bush administration in the Pacific and South Asia. Many of the specific policies advocated in her piece, from strengthened ties with Japan to making overtures to India, are being carried out today.

In the spring and summer of 2001, however, the most significant effect of this strategic focus was to distract Rice and other senior administration officials from the growing threat posed by Osama bin Laden and al-Qaida [note-liz: they were not "distracted" by 911, this was their engineered pretext to lauch the bogus 'war on terrorism' as the M.O. for accomplishing the necessary steps to achieve their primary objective, global domination, as spelled out in documents from as early as the 1990's and included again in recent digest]. During her first months in office as the president's senior advisor for national security affairs, Rice devoted herself to implementing the plan she had spelled out in Foreign Affairs. By all accounts, her top priorities in that early period were dissolving the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty with Russia and linking Japan, South Korea and Taiwan into a joint missile defense system, which, it was hoped, would ultimately evolve into a Pentagon-anchored anti-Chinese alliance....

Much influenced by Zbigniew Brzezinski, whose 1997 book, "The Grand Chessboard: American Primacy and Geostrategic Imperatives," first highlighted the critical importance of Central Asia, these strategists sought to counter Chinese inroads. Although Brzezinski himself has largely been excluded from elite Republican circles because of his association with the much despised Carter administration, his call for a coordinated U.S. drive to dominate both the eastern and western rimlands of China has been embraced by senior administration strategists.

In this way, Washington's concern over growing Chinese influence in Southeast Asia has come to be intertwined with the U.S. drive for hegemony in the Persian Gulf and Central Asia. This has given China policy an even more elevated significance in Washington -- and helps explain its return with a passion despite the seemingly all-consuming preoccupations of the war in Iraq.

Whatever the exact balance of factors, the Bush administration is now clearly engaged in a coordinated, systematic effort to contain Chinese power and influence in Asia. This effort appears to have three broad objectives: to convert existing relations with Japan, Australia and South Korea into a robust, integrated anti-Chinese alliance system; to bring other nations, especially India, into this system; and to expand U.S. military capabilities in the Asia-Pacific region.

Since the administration's campaign to bolster ties with Japan commenced a year ago, the two countries have been meeting continuously to devise protocols for the implementation of their 2005 strategic agreement. In October, Washington and Tokyo released the Alliance Transformation and Realignment Report, which is to guide the further integration of U.S. and Japanese forces in the Pacific and the simultaneous restructuring of the U.S. basing system in Japan. (Some of these bases, especially those on Okinawa, have become a source of friction in U.S.-Japanese relations and so the Pentagon is now considering ways to downsize the most objectionable installations.) Japanese and American officers are also engaged in a joint "interoperability" study, aimed at smoothing the "interface" between U.S. and Japanese combat and communications systems. "Close collaboration is also ongoing for cooperative missile defense," reports Adm. William J. Fallon, commander in chief of the U.S. Pacific Command (PACOM).

Steps have also been taken in this ongoing campaign to weld South Korea and Australia more tightly to the U.S.-Japanese alliance system. South Korea has long been reluctant to work closely with Japan because of that country's brutal occupation of the Korean peninsula from 1910 to 1945 and lingering fears of Japanese militarism; now, however, the Bush administration is promoting what it calls "trilateral military cooperation" between Seoul, Tokyo and Washington. As indicated by Fallon, this initiative has an explicitly anti-Chinese dimension. America's ties with South Korea must adapt to "the changing security environment" represented by "China's military modernization," Fallon told the Senate Armed Services Committee on March 7. By cooperating with the United States and Japan, he continued, South Korea will move from an overwhelming focus on North Korea to "a more regional view of security and stability."

Bringing Australia into this emerging anti-Chinese network has been a major priority of Rice, who spent several days there in mid-March. Although designed in part to bolster U.S.-Australian ties (largely neglected by Washington over the past few years), the main purpose of her visit was to host a meeting of top officials from Australia, the United States and Japan to develop a common strategy for curbing China's rising influence in Asia. No formal results were announced, but Steven Weisman of the New York Times reported on March 19 that Rice convened the meeting "to deepen a three-way regional alliance aimed in part at balancing the spreading presence of China."

An even bigger prize, in Washington's view, would be the integration of India into this emerging alliance system, a possibility first suggested in Rice's Foreign Affairs article. Such a move was long frustrated by congressional objections to India's nuclear weapons program and its refusal to sign on to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). Under U.S. law, nations like India that refuse to cooperate in nonproliferation measures can be excluded from various forms of aid and cooperation. To overcome this problem, President Bush met with Indian officials in New Delhi in March and negotiated a nuclear accord that will open India's civilian reactors to International Atomic Energy Agency inspection, thus providing a thin gloss of nonproliferation cooperation to India's robust nuclear weapons program. If Congress approves Bush's plan, the United States will be free to provide nuclear assistance to India and, in the process, significantly expand already growing military-to-military ties.

In signing the nuclear pact with India, Bush did not allude to the administration's anti-Chinese agenda, saying only that it would lay the foundation for a "durable defense relationship." But few have been fooled by this vague characterization. According to a recent article by Weisman in the New York Times, most U.S. lawmakers view the nuclear accord as an expression of the administration's desire to convert India into "a counterweight to China."

Accompanying all these diplomatic initiatives has been a vigorous, if largely unheralded, effort by the Department of Defense (DoD) to bolster U.S. military capabilities in the Asia-Pacific region.

The broad sweep of American strategy was first spelled out in the Pentagon's most recent policy assessment, the Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR), released on Feb. 5. In discussing long-term threats to U.S. security, the QDR begins with a reaffirmation of the overarching precept first articulated in the DPG of 1992: that the United States will not allow the rise of a competing superpower. This country "will attempt to dissuade any military competitor from developing disruptive or other capabilities that could enable regional hegemony or hostile action against the United States," the document states. It then identifies China as the most likely and dangerous competitor of this sort. "Of the major and emerging powers, China has the greatest potential to compete militarily with the United States and field disruptive military technologies that could over time offset traditional U.S. military advantages" -- then adding the kicker, "absent U.S. counter strategies."

According to the Pentagon, the task of countering future Chinese military capabilities largely entails the development, and then procurement, of major weapons systems that would ensure U.S. success in any full-scale military confrontation. "The United States will develop capabilities that would present any adversary with complex and multidimensional challenges and complicate its offensive planning efforts," the QDR explains. These include the steady enhancement of such "enduring U.S. advantages" as "long-range strike, stealth, operational maneuver and sustainment of air, sea, and ground forces at strategic distances, air dominance, and undersea warfare."

Preparing for war with China, in other words, is to be the future cash cow for the giant U.S. weapons-making corporations in the military-industrial complex. It will, for instance, be the primary justification for the acquisition of costly new weapons systems such as the F-22A Raptor air-superiority fighter, the multiservice Joint Strike Fighter, the DDX destroyer, the Virginia-class nuclear attack submarine and a new, intercontinental-penetrating bomber -- weapons that would just have utility in an all-out encounter with another great-power adversary of a sort that only China might someday become.

In addition to these weapons programs, the QDR also calls for a stiffening of present U.S. combat forces in Asia and the Pacific, with a particular emphasis on the Navy (the arm of the military least utilized in the ongoing occupation of and war in Iraq). "The fleet will have greater presence in the Pacific Ocean," the document notes. To achieve this, "the Navy plans to adjust its force posture and basing to provide at least six operationally available and sustainable [aircraft] carriers and 60% of its submarines in the Pacific to support engagement, presence and deterrence." Since each of these carriers is, in fact, but the core of a large array of support ships and protective aircraft, this move is sure to entail a truly vast buildup of U.S. naval capabilities in the western Pacific and will certainly necessitate a substantial expansion of the American basing complex in the region -- a requirement that is already receiving close attention from Fallon and his staff at PACOM. To assess the operational demands of this buildup, moreover, this summer the U.S. Navy will conduct its most extensive military maneuvers in the western Pacific since the end of the Vietnam War, with four aircraft carrier battle groups and many support ships expected to participate.

Add all of this together, and the resulting strategy cannot be viewed as anything but a systematic campaign of containment. No high administration official may say this in so many words, but it is impossible to interpret the recent moves of Rice and Rumsfeld in any other manner. From Beijing's perspective, the reality must be unmistakable: a steady buildup of American military power along China's eastern, southern and western boundaries.[...]

"Secret" Air Base for Iraq War started prior 9-11

With a small ceremony on April 26, 2003, control of Prince Sultan Air Base was handed back to the government of Saudi Arabia. Since the mid-nineties it had been the premier US air base in the region and the nerve center for all air force operations in the Gulf. As the home of the Combined Air Operations Center (CAOC), the base was the primary command and control facility responsible for orchestrating the air campaigns for both Operation Southern Watch in Iraq and Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.
The timing of the closing of PSAB seemed odd, coming just weeks after the official start of military actions in Iraq. It should have, at the very least, caused unwanted logistical problems for the Pentagon and regional commanders, but it didn't. A contingency plan had long been in the works, not only for Prince Sultan Air Base, but also for the entire map of the Middle East, including Iraq.

Long before the US pullout, a new home for the operations had secretly been built in the deserts of Qatar. What had been in October 2001 "nothing more than a runway and a field of sand covered by two-dozen tents and a few warehouses", the Al Udeid Air Base was transformed in a few short months into one of the largest air bases in the world.
Published reports and official DOD statements claimed that the amazing transformation was the result of the heroic response of US servicemen to the tragedy of 9-11. A determined military had beaten indeterminate odds to transform a barren wasteland into a state of the art military base in order to "take the war to the terrorists".

The true story of the building of Al-Udeid is actually quite different. The planning for the mammoth base had in fact taken place long before Sept. 11, and actual work on the base began as early as the spring of 2001. The building of Al Udeid turns out not to be a "miracle in the desert" in response to a heinous attack, as touted by the military, but rather a required step on the path to regime change in Iraq.

It has long been accepted knowledge that the Bush Administration was working feverishly towards regime change in Iraq during the 18-month period between 9-11 and the official start of the war in March of 2003. The Downing St Minutes confirmed that the Administration was set on a path to war at least as early as mid-summer of 2002. The accounts of Paul O'Neil and Richard Clarke verified that Iraq was a front burner issue for the Administration from the very first day, and only intensified after the attacks. Yet finding hard evidence to prove that planning for the war in Iraq was taking place prior to 9-11 has been hard to find. A look at the building of Al Udied can provide that evidence. [...]

FBI outsourced dirty work to secret Ethiopian prisons:
While we have been awash in news stories about the firing of U.S. attorneys, Don Imus and the Virginia Tech horror, how many Americans know that the FBI and the CIA have been interrogating suspected terrorists in secret prisons in Ethiopia?

Heroin is "Good for Your Health": Occupation Forces support Afghan Narcotics Trade
Multibillion dollar earnings for organized crime and Western financial Institutions
By Prof. Michel Chossudovsky

The occupation forces in Afghanistan are supporting the drug trade, which
brings between 120 and 194 billion dollars of revenues to organized crime,
intelligence agencies and Western financial institutions.

The proceeds of this lucrative multibllion dollar contraband are deposited
in Western banks. Almost the totality of revenues accrue to corporate
interests and criminal syndicates outside Afghanistan.

The Golden Crescent drug trade, launched by the CIA in the early 1980s,
continues to be protected by US intelligence, in liason with NATO occupation
forces and the British military. In recent developments, British occupation
forces have promoted opium cultivation through paid radio advertisements.

"A radio message broadcast across the province assured local farmers that
the Nato-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) would not
interfere with poppy fields currently being harvested.

"Respected people of Helmand. The soldiers of ISAF and ANA do not destroy
poppy fields," it said. "They know that many people of Afghanistan have no
choice but to grow poppy. ISAF and the ANA do not want to stop people from
earning their livelihoods." ( Quoted in The Guardian, 27 April 2007)

While the controversial opium ads have been casually dismissed as an
unfortunate mistake, there are indications that the opium economy is being
promoted at the political level (including the British government of Tony

The Senlis Council, an international think tank specialising in security and
policy issues is proposing the development of licit opium exports in
Afghanistan, with a view to promoting the production of pharmaceutical
pain-killers, such as morphine and codeine. According to the Senlis Council,
"the poppies are needed and, if properly regulated, could provide a legal
source of income to impoverished Afghan farmers while, at the same time,
depriving the drug lords and the Taliban of much of their income." (John
Polanyi, Globe and Mail, 23 September 2006)

The Senlis Council offers an alternative where "regulated poppy production
in Afghanistan" could be developed to produce needed painkillers. The Senlis
statement, however, fails to address the existing structure of licit opium
exports, which is characterised by oversupply .

The Senlis' campaign is part of the propaganda campaign. It has contributed
to providing a false legitimacy to Afghanistan's opium economy. (See details
of Senlis Project), which ultimately serves powerful vested interests.

How much opium acreage is required to supply the pharmaceutical industry?
According to the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB), which has a
mandate to exame issues pertaining to the supply of and demand for opiates
used for medical purposes, "the supply of such opiates has for years been at
levels well in excess of global demand".(Asian Times, February 2006) The
INCB has recommended reducing the production of opiates due to oversupply.

At present, India is the largest exporter of licit opium, supplying
approximately 50 percent of licit sales to pharmaceutical companies involved
in the production of pain-killing drugs. Turkey is also a major producer of
licit opium.
India's opium latex "is sold to licensed pharmaceutical and/or chemical
manufacturing firms such as Mallinckrodt and Johnson & Johnson, under rules
established by the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs and the International
Narcotics Control Board, which require an extensive paper trail." (Opium in
The area allocated to licit State controlled opium cultivation in India is
of the order of a modest 11,000 hectares, suggesting that the entire demand
of the global pharmaceutical industry requires approximately 22,000 hectares
of land allocated to poppy production. Opium for pharmaceutical use is not
in short supply. The demand of the pharmaceutical industry is already met.

Soaring Afghan Opium Production

The United Nations has announced that opium poppy cultivation in Afghanistan
has soared. There was a 59% increase in areas under opium cultivation in
2006. Production of opium is estimated to have increased by 49% in relation
to 2005.
The Western media in chorus blame the Taliban and the warlords. Western
officials are said to believe that "the trade is controlled by 25 smugglers
including three government ministers." (Guardian, op. cit).

Yet in a bitter irony, US military presence has served to restore rather
than eradicate the drug trade. Opium production has increased 33 fold from
185 tons in 2001 under the Taliban to 6100 tons in 2006. Cultivated areas
have increased 21 fold since the 2001 US-led invasion.

What the media reports fail to acknowledge is that the Taliban government
was instrumental in 2000-2001 in implementing a successful drug eradication
program, with the support and collaboration of the UN.
Implemented in 2000-2001, the Taliban's drug eradication program led to a 94
percent decline in opium cultivation. In 2001, according to UN figures,
opium production had fallen to 185 tons. Immediately following the October
2001 US led invasion, production increased dramatically, regaining its
historical levels.

The Vienna based UN Office on Drugs and Crime estimates that the 2006
harvest will be of the order of 6,100 tonnes, 33 times its production levels
in 2001 under the Taliban government (3200 % increase in 5 years).

Cultivation in 2006 reached a record 165,000 hectares compared with 104,000
in 2005 and 7,606 in 2001 under the Taliban

Multibillion dollar trade...

(See also our detailed estimates for 2003 in The Spoils of War:
Afghanistan's Multibillion Dollar Heroin Trade, by Michel Chossudovsky, The
UNODC estimates the average retail price of heroin for 2004 to be of the
order of $157 per gram, based on the average purity ratio).

Narcotics: Second to Oil and the Arms Trade

The foregoing estimates are consistent with the UN's assessment concerning
the size and magnitude of the global drug trade.

The Afghan trade in opiates (92 percent of total World production of
opiates) constitutes a large share of the worldwide annual turnover of
narcotics, which was estimated by the United Nations to be of the order of
$400-500 billion.

(Douglas Keh, Drug Money in a Changing World, Technical document No. 4,
1998, Vienna UNDCP, p. 4. See also United Nations Drug Control Program,
Report of the International Narcotics Control Board for 1999, E/INCB/1999/1
United Nations, Vienna 1999, p. 49-51, and Richard Lapper, UN Fears Growth
of Heroin Trade, Financial Times, 24 February 2000).

Based on 2003 figures, drug trafficking constitutes "the third biggest
global commodity in cash terms after oil and the arms trade." (The
Independent, 29 February 2004).

Afghanistan and Colombia (together with Bolivia and Peru) consitute the
largest drug producing economies in the world, which feed a flourishing
criminal economy. These countries are heavily militarized. The drug trade is
protected. Amply documented the CIA has played a central role in the
development of both the Latin American and Asian drug triangles.

The IMF estimated global money laundering to be between 590 billion and 1.5
trillion dollars a year, representing 2-5 percent of global GDP. (Asian
Banker, 15 August 2003).

A large share of global money laundering as estimated by the IMF is linked
to the trade in narcotics, one third of which is tied to the Golden Crescent
opium triangle.

US Seeks To Bar Anti-Castro Terrorist From Speaking of CIA Ties
The US government is seeking to bar former CIA agent Luis Posada Carriles, who is wanted in Venezuela and Cuba for the downing of an airliner, from talking about his links with the agency when he goes on trial in May.


The militarization of neuroscience
By Hugh Gusterson | 10 April 2007
Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

... The science in question now is not physics, but neuroscience, and the question is whether we can control its militarization.

According to Jonathan Moreno's fascinating and frightening new book, Mind Wars: Brain Research and National Defense (Dana Press 2006),
the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency has been funding research in the following areas:

*Mind-machine interfaces ("neural prosthetics") that will enable pilots and soldiers to control high-tech weapons by thought alone.
*"Living robots" whose movements could be controlled via brain implants. This technology has already been tested successfully on "roborats" and could lead to animals remotely directed for mine clearance, or even to remotely controlled soldiers.
*"Cognitive feedback helmets" that allow remote monitoring of soldiers' mental state.
*MRI technologies ("brain fingerprinting") for use in interrogation or airport screening for terrorists. Quite apart from questions about their error rate, such technologies would raise the issue of whether involuntary brain scans violate the Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.
*Pulse weapons or other neurodisruptors that play havoc with enemy soldiers' thought processes.
*"Neuroweapons" that use biological agents to excite the release of neurotoxins. (The Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention bans the stockpiling of such weapons for offensive purposes, but not "defensive" research into their mechanisms of action.)
*New drugs that would enable soldiers to go without sleep for days, to excise traumatic memories, to suppress fear, or to repress psychological inhibitions against killing.

Moreno's book is important since there has been little discussion about the ethical implications of such research, and the science is at an early enough stage that it might yet be redirected in response to public discussion.

If left on autopilot, however, it's not hard to see where all of this will lead. During the Cold War, misplaced fears of a missile gap and a mind control gap excited an overbuilding of nuclear weapons and unethical LSD experiments on involuntary human subjects. Similarly, we can anticipate future fears of a "neuroweapons" gap, and these fears will justify a headlong rush into research (quite likely to involve unethical human experiments) that will only stimulate our enemies to follow suit.

The military and scientific leaders chartering neuroweapons research will argue that the United States is a uniquely noble country that can be trusted with such technologies, while other countries (except for a few allies) cannot. They will also argue that these technologies will save lives and that U.S. ingenuity will enable the United States to dominate other countries in a neuroweapons race. When it is too late to turn back the clock, they will profess amazement that other countries caught up so quickly and that an initiative intended to ensure American dominance instead led to a world where everyone is threatened by chemicalized soldiers and roboterrorists straight out of Blade Runner.

Meanwhile, individual scientists will tell themselves that, if they don't do the research, someone else will. Research funding will be sufficiently dominated by military grant makers that it will cause some scientists to choose between accepting military funding or giving up their chosen field of research. And the very real dual-use potential of these new technologies (the same brain implant can create a robosoldier or rehabilitate a Parkinson's disease sufferer) will allow scientists to tell themselves that they are "really" working on health technologies to improve the human lot, and the funding just happens to come from the Pentagon. [...]

Mind Wars: Brain Research and National Defense [SIC]

Ready or Not: Q&A with Mind Wars author Jonathan Moreno

Jonathan D. Moreno, Ph.D., is the David and Lyn Silfen University Professor at the University of Pennsylvania. He is an elected member of the Institute of Medicine, an advisor to the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, and a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress. He has been a senior staff member for two presidential ethics commissions and is past president of the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities. He has written numerous books including Is There an Ethicist in the House?: On the Cutting Edge of Bioethics (Indiana University Press, 2005), and Undue Risk: Secret State Experiments on Humans (Routledge, 2000).
Ready or Not
Q&A with "Mind Wars" Author [liberal scientist] Jonathan Moreno

By Nicky Penttila
October 2006
In his latest book, “Mind Wars: Brain Research and National Defense,” bioethicist Jonathan Moreno describes the range of brain-related research U.S. military agencies such as the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) are paying for. From drugs that could improve soldiers’ abilities and endurance (and others that could bewilder enemies) to devices controlled by or controlling people’s minds, these possible uses of cutting-edge neuroscience will change how wars are fought. As biologists are doing with bio-weaponry and physicists did with nuclear weaponry, Moreno argues, it’s time for neurobiologists -- and the rest of us -- to get a grip on the ethical and social issues of waging “mind wars” and decide how far we want this battle-science to go. ...

In the book, there’s some careful writing about talking to people and the source of your material. Were people unwilling to talk to you?

I really consider myself a member of the establishment, and I think by any fair measure I am, but I did find that -- unlike physicists whom I’ve spoken with about the social issues in nuclear physics, or these days, increasingly, biologists who worry about biosecurity -- people who work in neuroscience, at least the people that I spoke to, were very reluctant to talk for the record. And I think there are a number of reasons for that.

Part of it is because scientists generally don’t want to say something stupid and jeopardize a funding source. Part of it also is that some of them are working in “secured circumstances” -- they’re not just working for DARPA, which is [ note: it's the Pentagon research agency--see below] not a spy agency, but they’re working for spy agencies and they didn’t want to stumble and say the wrong thing. Part of it also is that, in general, scientists think they’re the smartest guys in the room, and even believe that -- and I pretty much got this reaction from a couple of people -- “Well, this agency, I don’t know what their goal is but they’re funding important research that’s going to help people and I don’t think I’m doing anything that’s going to be a problem downstream.”...

Most of the work you describe in the book is funded by DARPA? How much cutting-edge neuroscience applications do you think you’re missing?

You know, we don’t know what the denominator is. The CIA’s budget is black [secret]. But my gut tells me that DARPA is working on the most interesting science, and that the other agencies are more interested in short-term applications of the science....there really is no standard in the academy about classified research....Some places allow classified research, but they’ll create off-campus facilities for it, on the theory that that way it doesn’t interfere with the open academic discourse. And some places don’t seem to have any policies at all.
Nicky Penttila is a senior writer and editor for Dana Press. She may be reached at npenttila (at) dana.org.

Excerpts from the book:

On the Strategic Advantages of Enhancing the Brain and Nervous System

In a sense, all warfare ultimately happens between our ears. If opponents believe they have been defeated, then that becomes the reality, hence the military’s investment in psychological operations, such as propaganda leaflets and disinformation, despite their uncertain payoffs. But if targeted interventions are made possible by the greatly enhanced knowledge of the brain and nervous system now being generated at a feverish pace in our top neuroscience labs, complemented by ingenious new engineering and pharmacologic products, the battle of the brain will have truly begun.

The powers that can claim the advantage and establish a ‘neurotechnology gap’ between themselves and their adversaries will establish both tactical and strategic advantages that can render them dominant in the twenty-first century.

On the Conflict Between Objective Scientific Research, Government Aims, and Highly Classified Conditions

The relationship between science and the national security state in the context of a war on terror is still unfolding. Unlike the post-World War II era, when scientists who had eagerly joined the war effort saw military-related funding as a continuation of their previous employment, today significant distance lies between much of the scientific establishment and defense organizations. First, science has many other funding sources, including venture capital, that were not important players in the 1950s. Second, cultural differences between scientists and military officials bring with them a degree of mutual skepticism, if not outright suspicion, that was not the case fifty years ago, before Vietnam and Watergate. Third, unlike the experience of physics with the atomic and hydrogen bomb projects, the life sciences have not had much experience with operating under highly classified conditions. Many important researchers and their institutions chafe under security constraints, including not only sequestering their data but also tightening rules on the handling of pathogens in their labs and limiting visas for graduate students from abroad.

Robots as Soldiers: Science Fiction or the Reality of the Future?

Here’s a science fiction scenario: an army of robots capable of movement nearly as precise as that of a human soldier, each controlled by an individual hundreds or even thousands of miles away. These automata could undertake actions that would be foolhardy for human beings but worth the tactical risk for machines; because they are controlled by people, they would have the benefit of creativity that might limit even the most advanced android. But the old-fashioned remote control scenario would have the operator pushing buttons or moving levers while seeing on a monitor what the robot is seeing, a method that would be far too clumsy for the instantaneous reactions often required in combat. What is wanted is a technology that would allow the robot to respond as soon as the distant operator does. . . . Ultimately, decades from now, human abilities could be augmented so that combat soldiers could have vastly more powerful and faster robotic arms and legs, and pilots could control vehicles through intentional thought alone. Warfighters, intelligence offers, medics, and rescuers could wirelessly manage legions of robots through direct communication between the human brains and on-board artificial brains.

On Creating the Perfect Soldier: The 21st-century Warfighter

“The human being is the oldest instrument of warfare and also its weakest link. Although astonishing and terrifying “improvements” have been made in the devices of conflict over the millennia, soldiers are still basically the same. They must eat, sleep, detect danger, discern friend from foe, heal when wounded, and so forth. The first state (or nonstate actor) able to build better soldiers using medical enhancement technologies will have taken an enormous leap in the arms race. The concept of “an army of one” and the recent shift from soldier to “warfighter” in the military lexicon . . . are tied into the goal of building a more self-sufficient individual warrior. However better soldiers are built – and there’s good reason to believe that the warfighter of the late twenty-first century will be enhanced – the fighter’s brain will have been the object of great interest...Should we build better soldiers through ‘artificial’ enhancements? Is there even a valid distinction to be drawn between artificial and ‘natural’ enhancements such as exercise and discipline? Aren’t we just trying to gain whatever advantages we can as nations have always tried to do, or are these techniques cheating nature? Can we manage the consequences, or are the risks for the individual and for our society too great?

Forgive and Forget?: On Increasing the Brain’s Capacity to Remember

The introduction of a new memory storage system and bypassing our evolutionarily developed hippocampus raise the question whether our usual ability to slough off unneeded memories will be threatened, resulting in a cacophony of useless data that could drive one to distraction. Forgetting is often annoying but mostly adaptive, even a great relief. In the film Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, ex-lovers undergo a high-tech brain-erasing procedure to forget about the pain of their breakup. In a literally touching moment in Star Trek, Mr. Spock engages in an (unconsented) Vulcan mind-meld with Captain Kirk to help him forget a tragic love affair. Less romantically, undercover agents would benefit from the ability to lose their memories upon capture. Neuropsychologists have already found that deliberate memory loss among victims of parental abuse is both a demonstrable phenomenon (they are not “lying” when they say they don’t recall) and a very effective defense mechanism. As the philosopher Bernard Williams has put it, “Forgetting is the most beneficial process we possess.”

On Disarming Opponents Through Disruption of the Human Brain

Proponents of “nonlethal” weapons (NLWs) claim that they will obviate the need to kill or maim. These weapons are actively being sought by all branches of the U.S. military and come in a dazzling variety of forms: calmatives or “incapacitants” – chemicals that put people to sleep; acoustic and light-pulsing devices that disrupt cognitive and neural processes; odors so disgusting they sicken; sudden colored fog that creates panic; optical equipment that causes temporary blindness; and mechanisms that stimulate nerve endings as though they are fire, among dozens of others. A striking fact about this list is that all are related to the human brain and nervous system.... Growing concerns about terrorism have fed interest in NLWs. Contemporary arms and stockpiles have typically been designed for fighting between nation-states. The use of conventional nonnuclear and nuclear weapons in the places terrorists like to operate would result in high levels of noncombatant casualties that may be politically as well as morally unacceptable.

more on DARPA [major creator of the internet for the military and now involved in destroying it to construct "secure"new internet
[see 4/23 issue of the digest]
Frankensteins in the Pentagon : DARPA's Creepy Bioengineering Program
By Cheryl Seal
25 August 2003
DARPA Bioengineering Program Seeks to Turn Soldiers Into Cyborgs

Not long ago, the public was stunned by the practical and moral idiocy of the Pentagon researcher (and unprosecuted war criminal) John Poindexter, who proposed a 'football pool' scheme for predicting terrorist attacks. We all laughed at such insanity and were relieved to see the scheme speedily deep-sixed. However, this bit of lunacy was just the lightest ice in the tip of the very large, very dark iceberg that the Pentagon's research program, better known as DARPA, has become.

Just a few weeks before the bizarro world 'terrorism gambling' project was exposed, a DARPA (which stands for Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency)-sponsored conference was held in Washington, DC, that showcased the latest love child of the Bush Pentagon: military bioengineering. The euphemisms being used by the Pentagon to disguise the true nature of this research are being spread as thick as bondo and cheap paint at a used car lot. For example, the title of the conference was: 'Harvesting Biology for Defense Technology,' while the subheading of the section on human 'bioengineering' was entitled, rather ominously, in light of the military's history, 'Enhancing Human Performance.'

So how does the Bush DARPA seek to 'enhance' human performance? In a kinder, gentler administration, the solution would be better training, better food, better pay, more leave time, and greater use of stress-reducing duty rotations. But this is not a kinder, gentler -or even rational- administration. Bush and Company plan to enhance soldier performance by squeezing the most that can be humanly -and not so humanly- squeezed from troops without having to resort to anything as primitive as decent pay. Their motto: Get the most human output for the least human input: After all, it's the corporate way!

Here are some examples of DARPA 'Human-enhancing' schemes:

The 'Brain Interface Program' is the most lavishly funded of nearly all the DARPA bioengineering efforts (the project has been given $24 million for the next two years). It is aimed at developing ways to 'integrate' soldiers into machines -literally- by wiring them (remotely or directly) to their planes, tanks, or computers. An implantable brain chip is now under development in this sick program, which has already proudly demonstrated how rats can be turned into living robots through the manipulation of stimulus-response signals in the brain via electrodes. The Pentagon hopes to use these pathetic, 'modified' creatures (you should see the photos -makes you want to join People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals!) in mine clearance.

"The use of animals in warfare is ugly enough without the further insult to their dignity involved in turning them into involuntary cyborgs," writes James Meek in the Guardian. "And a military command committed to the use of creatures which are part-animal, part-machine, is going to be that bit less reluctant to interfere in its soldiers in similar ways."

But, as the conference heading would have you believe, DARPA isn't interfering -it is merely 'enhancing.' After all, as an official at DARPA recently observed, "The human is becoming the weakest link in defense systems."

Enhancement efforts at the Brain Interface Program are now progressing nicely. The chief Frankenstein of the project, one Alan S. Rudolph, now wants to be able to transmit images or sound directly into the brains of rats -and of course, later, soldiers...or prisoners of war (just imagine the torture potential here!).

The 'Metabolic Dominance and Engineered Tissue' program is aimed at being able to artificially pump up soldier endurance and muscle strength.

The 'Persistence in Combat' program is a bizarre self-treatment scheme which would include pain-reducing and blood-stopping devices and techniques soldiers would apply to their own wounds -even moderately severe ones- thereby bypassing the need for a medic and enabling a soldier to keep fighting, despite serious wounds! Yep, just keep on runnin' through the jungle on that broken leg or with that bullet in the gut! Once that pain-obliterating electrode in your brain is activated, you won't feel a thing!

The 'Continuous Assisted Perfomance' program hopes to find biotechnological ways (implants, metabolic manipulation, etc) to make it possible to push exhausted soldiers on without loss of performance for up to seven days without sleep.

The above technologies are referred to by DARPA under the subheading of 'neuroengineering.' Neuroengineering was played around with back in the early 1990s (no doubt given the initial green light by Bush I), but became a rather minor and exotic 'side line' of research in the Clinton years. Since Bush II came on the scene, however, neuroengineering programs have been shoved into a position of major importance.

The wording of the descriptions of all the 'human enhancement' programs is extremely deceptive -even deliberately misleading. For example, having read the Brain Interface Program background in Nature magazine, I know for a fact that 'noninvasive' technologies (contrary to what is claimed in the description) are not currently the project priority and are considered at best a remote goal. What is in the works right now is a microprocessing chip that can be implanted beneath the skull and remotely manipulated. In a June 19 Nature article, Rudolph estimated that a usable chip that could be field-tested in rats is about two years away, while noninvasive technologies (whatever that means -how can it not be when you are manipulating someone's neurons?) is only an aspired-to ideal.

The researchers also try to hide behind grandiose-sounding claims of working to the greater good as a way to fool the public, and possibly themselves, into believing that these projects really do have some benign reasons for being, if only to promote the cause of 'science.' That is why nearly every program in the conference guide comes with a 'suggested benign use' (my own flippant phrase). After all, whines Rudolph, today's soldier's brain chip may be tomorrow's brain damage therapy. We should be impressed? After all, the same argument was used by Hitler's researchers to justify their heartless 'medical' experiments on Jews, gypsies, retarded children, enemy soldiers, prisoners, et al.). What is truly chilling is that these technologies, in essence, are seeking to turn our soldiers into human fighting machines, sacrificing their autonomy and, very likely, long-term quality of life for short term military savings -savings that will go right into the pockets of the government's beloved defense contractors. There is no way these technologies can be benign -the whole concept is totally against what America stands for and against any other reasonable code of ethics, for that matter. In addition, with the way they are being rushed through the research gamut,there is no way they can be proven safe, especially long-term. I can just imagine the residual tissue damage, cancers, post-traumatic stress disorders, etc, that DARPA-style 'human enhancement' will inflict on our guys and gals in uniform. Remember Agent Orange? Remember aboveground nuke testing? Remember submarine sailors being gassed as a DARPA 'experiment,' or those soldiers, most of them black or Hispanic, fed LSD? As it is, more than half of all Gulf War vets have now filed for disability because of the devastating effects of Gulf War Syndrome.

The only variable that has been conclusively linked to the syndrome is the ingestion by US Gulf War soldiers (and some British troops) of a 'cocktail' of anti-bacterial inoculations (including the anthrax vaccine) and an anti-nerve gas agent. A clear pattern was shown: Soldiers who did not receive the 'cocktail' (including all French soldiers) did not later report Gulf War syndrome symptoms, even if exposed to depleted uranium (another suspected cause). This finding came out in European journals way back in the mid-1990s. French commanders and many British commanders seriously questioned the wisdom of the cocktail at the time. But not the Pentagon! After all, the cocktail was 'human enhancing.' So now, will beneath-the-skull implants for soldiers become as mandatory as anthrax vaccines? (for my theory of Gulf War syndrome, read the paragraph after this article).

With the insane Bush DARPA plunging forward with its Darth Vader research, the possibilities for horrific misuse and long-term consequences are staggering. For example, one of the DARPA Frankensteins, one Ted Berger of the University of Southern California, envisions pilots who would be able to pilot their planes by thought alone, thanks to brain implants. This concept, like so much military research, fails to consider realistic variables. To name just a few of these: what about the impact of fear, exhaustion, pain, or dizziness on effective neural function? Whoops -didn't mean to crash into that busy highway! Or how about ruthless generals turning their pilots into 'instant Kamikazes' as a shortcut to winning a battle? Or, for that matter, who's to stop the enemy or a lone terrorist who has gained access to the technology from finding a way to repeat 9/11 scenarios using our own pilots or soldiers? At the very least, there can be no benign consequence to pushing men and women beyond their 'unassisted' endurance. The risk of brain damage, brain tumors, cancers, catastrophic immune responses similar to host-graft disease, heart attacks (from electronic signals triggering arrhythmias), and other assaults on the body seem the most imminent dangers. But who knows what unforeseen consequences may emerge? For example, the children conceived during and right after the first above-ground nuclear tests are just now approaching 60 - who knows what sort of long smoldering cancers may yet erupt into 'epidemics.' ...

Resources on DARPA's Neuroengineering Project

Click here for information on the DARPA-sponsored convention.

Click here for James Meek's Roborat Ethics article.

Click here for tips on how to investigate military research at your university.

To help get you started, here's a list of names of DARPA 'human enhancement' program research fund recipients and their universities. Miguel Nicolelis, Duke University at Durham, North Carolina; Tomaso Poggio, James DiCarlo and Christof Koch, Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Sam Deadwyler, Wake Forest University; Jon Kaas, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tennessee; Ted Berger, University of Southern California.

"depopulation should be the highest priority of U.S. foreign policy towards the Third World."
Henry Kissinger

The Genetically Modified Bomb
by Thom Hartmann

Imagine a bomb that only kills Caucasians with red hair. Or short people. Or Arabs. Or Chinese.

Now imagine that this new bomb could be set off anywhere in the world, and that within a matter of days, weeks, or months it would kill every person on the planet who fits the bomb's profile, although the rest of us would be left standing. And the bomb could go off silently, without anybody realizing it had been released - or even where it was released - until its victims started dying in mass numbers. ...

When creating a genetic bomb to target specific groups, such genetic profiles are actually far subtler and more accurate than the coarse pseudo-category we call race. Among men named Cohen all over the world, for example, researchers have found a specific genetic profile tying them all back to a common ancestor. Another group with a common genetic profile are people with ADHD ("The Edison Gene"), who uniquely share common inherited variations in their dopamine-regulating genes regardless of their ostensible race, geography, or ethnicity.

Thus, anybody who's part of a group with a shared genetic profile may be at risk in the future, suggest the authors of The Project for a New American Century's (PNAC) report titled "Rebuilding America's Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources For a New Century."

The report notes that, "Much has been written in recent years about the need to transform the conventional armed forces of the United States to take advantage of the 'revolution in military affairs....'" They point out that our military requires a dramatic transformation, lest we lose our ability to fight future, unconventional wars. Some may be fought in cyberspace, others underwater or in outer space. And some even within our own bodies.

Consider what would happen if there was a virus or bacteria that only infected a particular type of person, killing, disabling, or sterilizing only those of a particular genetic profile. Consider the political leverage a nation would have if they could credibly threaten the extinction of all people worldwide with almond-shaped eyes, or the sterilization of everybody with a gene that tracks them back to a common ancestor or region.

Three years ago, Wolfowitz, Kristol, and their colleagues suggested this is something the Pentagon should be thinking about. Not just germ warfare, but gene warfare. ...

Genetically targeted weapons could change world politics forever, according to PNAC. ... their report notes, "advanced forms of biological warfare that can 'target' specific genotypes may transform biological warfare from the realm of terror to a politically useful tool." ...

Thom Hartmann (thom at thomhartmann.com) is the award-winning, best-selling author of over a dozen books, and the host of a syndicated daily talk show that runs opposite Rush Limbaugh in cities from coast to coast. www.thomhartmann.com His most recent book (September 2003) is "The Edison Gene." This article is copyright by Thom Hartmann, but permission is granted for reprint in print, email, blog, or web media so long as this credit is attached and the title is unchanged. Published on Wednesday, September 10, 2003 by CommonDreams.org

August 07, 2003
Surveys show that on US college campuses over 70% of all science funding comes directly from DARPA. DARPA is the successor to ARPA, a federal bureaucracy created in 1958 to push forward scientific research with potential military applications. I find it interesting that in 1960 outgoing President Dwight D. Eisenhower warned of the dangerous undue influence that the military-industrial complex was having in America's infrastructure, and especially on college campuses.

There are thousands of facets to this nightmare agency, but there are several more that we will look at today. One was reported on in the August 5, 2003 Boston Globe. The paper ran the headline, "Defense Department funding brain-machine work." The project is developing technology that "promises to directly read thoughts from a living brain - and even instill thoughts as well." It does not take much imagination to see in this the makings of a "matrix-like cyberpunk dystopia: chips that impose false memories, machines that scan for wayward thoughts, cognitively augmented government security forces that impose a ruthless order on a recalcitrant population."

The technology has already been installed in five airports in the US. CBS news reported on the high-powered MRI systems that scan travelers' brains as they walk through the airport checkpoint at Boston Logan. The technicians are trained to determine what aggressive thought patterns look like and to single out passengers for questioning. They are then put under another brain scanner that supposedly detects lies and are asked questions. This gives new meaning to the term "thought crime."

DARPA was also instrumental in developing machines that pierce your clothes and give crystal-clear images of your naked body. For eight years we have seen mainstream media reports cover this technology and the FCC's approval for police helicopters to have DARPA-funded ground penetrating radar mounted on them to surveil US cities.

While newer systems of ground penetrating radar remain classified, the older systems have been demonstrated on national television so we can all appreciate our new slave status. Viewers are treated to a black and white x-ray style view of people walking around in their homes. What ever happened to the Fourth Amendment barring search and seizure and the invasion of privacy without a warrant?

DARPA is also getting Congressional approval for a fleet of drones fitted with similar scanning systems to feed streaming data 24 hours a day back to the FEMA continuity of government bunkers.

And finally, on DARPA's own website, they promote the "Centibots." These tiny 5-pound robots have their own artificial intelligence and hunt fugitives or provide surveillance and security for government agencies in wolf packs of twenty. They are identical in many aspects to the police spiders in Minority Report.

Cops Planted Pot on 92-Year Old Woman They Killed:
According to federal documents released this week, these are the events that led to Kathryn Johnston's death and the steps the officers took to cover their tracks. http://www.alternet.org/drugreporter/51151/

A History Of US Secret Human Experimentation
3-25-03: Health News Network

1931 Dr. Cornelius Rhoads, under the auspices of the Rockefeller Institute for Medical Investigations, infects human subjects with cancer cells. He later goes on to establish the U.S. Army Biological Warfare facilities in Maryland, Utah, and Panama, and is named to the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission. While there, he begins a series of radiation exposure experiments on American soldiers and civilian hospital patients.

1932 The Tuskegee Syphilis Study begins. 200 black men diagnosed with syphilis are never told of their illness, are denied treatment, and instead are used as human guinea pigs in order to follow the progression and symptoms of the disease. They all subsequently die from syphilis, their families never told that they could have been treated.

1935 The Pellagra Incident. After millions of individuals die from Pellagra over a span of two decades, the U.S. Public Health Service finally acts to stem the disease. The director of the agency admits it had known for at least 20 years that Pellagra is caused by a niacin deficiency but failed to act since most of the deaths occured within poverty- striken black populations.

1940 Four hundred prisoners in Chicago are infected with Malaria in order to study the effects of new and experimental drugs to combat the disease. Nazi doctors later on trial at Nuremberg cite this American study to defend their own actions during the Holocaust.

1942 Chemical Warfare Services begins mustard gas experiments on approximately 4,000 servicemen. The experiments continue until 1945 and made use of Seventh Day Adventists who chose to become human guinea pigs rather than serve on active duty.

1943 In response to Japan's full-scale germ warfare program, the U.S. begins research on biological weapons at Fort Detrick, MD.

1944 U.S. Navy uses human subjects to test gas masks and clothing. Individuals were locked in a gas chamber and exposed to mustard gas and lewisite.

1945 Project Paperclip is initiated. The U.S. State Department, Army intelligence, and the CIA recruit Nazi scientists and offer them immunity and secret identities in exchange for work on top secret government projects in the United States.

1945 "Program F" is implemented by the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission (AEC). This is the most extensive U.S. study of the health effects of fluoride, which was the key chemical component in atomic bomb production. One of the most toxic chemicals known to man, fluoride, it is found, causes marked adverse effects to the central nervous system but much of the information is squelched in the name of national security because of fear that lawsuits would undermine full-scale production of atomic bombs.

1946 Patients in VA hospitals are used as guinea pigs for medical experiments. In order to allay suspicions, the order is given to change the word "experiments" to "investigations" or "observations" whenever reporting a medical study performed in one of the nation's veteran's hospitals.

1947 Colonel E.E. Kirkpatrick of the U.S. Atomic Energy Comission issues a secret document (Document 07075001, January 8, 1947) stating that the agency will begin administering intravenous doses of radioactive substances to human subjects.

1947 The CIA begins its study of LSD as a potential weapon for use by American intelligence. Human subjects (both civilian and military) are used with and without their knowledge. [Operation Artichoke]

1950 Department of Defense begins plans to detonate nuclear weapons in desert areas and monitor downwind residents for medical problems and mortality rates.

1950 In an experiment to determine how susceptible an American city would be to biological attack, the U.S. Navy sprays a cloud of bacteria from ships over San Franciso. Monitoring devices are situated throughout the city in order to test the extent of infection. Many residents become ill with pneumonia-like symptoms.

1951 Department of Defense begins open air tests using disease-producing bacteria and viruses. Tests last through 1969 and there is concern that people in the surrounding areas have been exposed.

1953 U.S. military releases clouds of zinc cadmium sulfide gas over Winnipeg, St. Louis, Minneapolis, Fort Wayne, the Monocacy River Valley in Maryland, and Leesburg, Virginia. Their intent is to determine how efficiently they could disperse chemical agents.

1953 Joint Army-Navy-CIA experiments are conducted in which tens of thousands of people in New York and San Francisco are exposed to the airborne germs Serratia marcescens and Bacillus glogigii.

1953 CIA initiates Project MKULTRA. This is an eleven year research program designed to produce and test drugs and biological agents that would be used for mind control and behavior modification. Six of the subprojects involved testing the agents on unwitting human beings.

1955 The CIA, in an experiment to test its ability to infect human populations with biological agents, releases a bacteria withdrawn from the Army's biological warfare arsenal over Tampa Bay, Fl.

1955 Army Chemical Corps continues LSD research, studying its potential use as a chemical incapacitating agent. More than 1,000 Americans participate in the tests, which continue until 1958.

1956 U.S. military releases mosquitoes infected with Yellow Fever over Savannah, Ga and Avon Park, Fl. Following each test, Army agents posing as public health officials test victims for effects.

1958 LSD is tested on 95 volunteers at the Army's Chemical Warfare Laboratories for its effect on intelligence.

1960 The Army Assistant Chief-of-Staff for Intelligence (ACSI) authorizes field testing of LSD in Europe and the Far East. Testing of the european population is code named Project THIRD CHANCE; testing of the Asian population is code named Project DERBY HAT. [Opeation Dirty Tricks]

1965 Project CIA and Department of Defense begin Project MKSEARCH, a program to develop a capability to manipulate human behavior through the use of mind-altering drugs.

1965 Prisoners at the Holmesburg State Prison in Philadelphia are subjected to dioxin, the highly toxic chemical component of Agent Orange used in Viet Nam. The men are later studied for development of cancer, which indicates that Agent Orange had been a suspected carcinogen all along.

1966 CIA initiates Project MKOFTEN, a program to test the toxicological effects of certain drugs on humans and animals.

1966 U.S. Army dispenses Bacillus subtilis variant niger throughout the New York City subway system. More than a million civilians are exposed when army scientists drop lightbulbs filled with the bacteria onto ventilation grates.

1967 CIA and Department of Defense implement Project MKNAOMI, successor to MKULTRA and designed to maintain, stockpile and test biological and chemical weapons.

1968 CIA experiments with the possibility of poisoning drinking water by injecting chemicals into the water supply of the FDA in Washington, D.C.

1969 Dr. Robert MacMahan of the Department of Defense requests from congress $10 million to develop, within 5 to 10 years, a synthetic biological agent to which no natural immunity exists.

1970 Funding for the synthetic biological agent is obtained under H.R. 15090. The project, under the supervision of the CIA, is carried out by the Special Operations Division at Fort Detrick, the army's top secret biological weapons facility. Speculation is raised that molecular biology techniques are used to produce AIDS-like retroviruses.

1970 United States intensifies its development of "ethnic weapons" (Military Review, Nov., 1970), designed to selectively target and eliminate specific ethnic groups who are susceptible due to genetic differences and variations in DNA.

1975 The virus section of Fort Detrick's Center for Biological Warfare Research is renamed the Fredrick Cancer Research Facilities and placed under the supervision of the National Cancer Institute (NCI) . It is here that a special virus cancer program is initiated by the U.S. Navy, purportedly to develop cancer-causing viruses. It is also here that retrovirologists isolate a virus to which no immunity exists. It is later named HTLV (Human T-cell Leukemia Virus).

1977 Senate hearings on Health and Scientific Research confirm that 239 populated areas had been contaminated with biological agents between 1949 and 1969. Some of the areas included San Francisco, Washington, D.C., Key West, Panama City, Minneapolis, and St. Louis.
1978 Experimental Hepatitis B vaccine trials, conducted by the CDC, begin in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco. Ads for research subjects specifically ask for promiscuous homosexual men.

1981 First cases of AIDS are confirmed in homosexual men in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco, triggering speculation that AIDS may have been introduced via the Hepatitis B vaccine

1985 According to the journal Science (227:173-177), HTLV and VISNA, a fatal sheep virus, are very similar, indicating a close taxonomic and evolutionary relationship.

1986 According to the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (83:4007-4011), HIV and VISNA are highly similar and share all structural elements, except for a small segment which is nearly identical to HTLV. This leads to speculation that HTLV and VISNA may have been linked to produce a new retrovirus to which no natural immunity exists.

1986 A report to Congress reveals that the U.S. Government's current generation of biological agents includes: modified viruses, naturally occurring toxins, and agents that are altered through genetic engineering to change immunological character and prevent treatment by all existing vaccines.
1987 Department of Defense admits that, despite a treaty banning research and development of biological agents, it continues to operate research facilities at 127 facilities and universities around the nation.

1990 More than 1500 six-month old black and hispanic babies in Los Angeles are given an "experimental" measles vaccine that had never been licensed for use in the United States. CDC later admits that parents were never informed that the vaccine being injected to their children was experimental.

1994 With a technique called "gene tracking," Dr. Garth Nicolson at the MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, TX discovers that many returning Desert Storm veterans are infected with an altered strain of Mycoplasma incognitus, a microbe commonly used in the production of biological weapons. Incorporated into its molecular structure is 40 percent of the HIV protein coat, indicating that it had been man-made.

1994 Senator John D. Rockefeller issues a report revealing that for at least 50 years the Department of Defense has used hundreds of thousands of military personnel in human experiments and for intentional exposure to dangerous substances. Materials included mustard and nerve gas, ionizing radiation, psychochemicals, hallucinogens, and drugs used during the Gulf War .

1995 U.S. Government admits that it had offered Japanese war criminals and scientists who had performed human medical experiments salaries and immunity from prosecution in exchange for data on biological warfare research.

1995 Dr. Garth Nicolson, uncovers evidence that the biological agents used during the Gulf War had been manufactured in Houston, TX and Boca Raton, Fl and tested on prisoners in the Texas Department of Corrections.

1996 Department of Defense admits that Desert Storm soldiers were exposed to chemical agents.

1997 Eighty-eight members of Congress sign a letter demanding an investigation into bioweapons use & Gulf War Syndrome.

ª 1998-2000 Health News Network


Big Brother and You: The Latest From the NSA
by Rahul Mahajan

Big Brother is watching you. At least when you’re on the phone -- he knows what numbers you’ve called, how many times and for how long, what numbers people at those numbers have called, and so on.

Last week’s revelation that, for almost five years now, the National Security Agency has gotten AT&T, Verizon, and BellSouth to turn over all the calling records of all their clients, marks a qualitatively new step in the Bush administration’s post-9/11 creation of the panoptic state, one of its key goals in the constantly metastasizing “war on terror.”

The answer is...to mount a renewed effort to explain to the public what the “war on terror” really is. In a nutshell, it’s an organizing principle to be used to transform not only U.S. military policy but also, domestically, the relationship between government and society, in the direction of increased authoritarianism and militarization....
“preventive war,” fought against an enemy that might conceivably become a threat at some nebulous point in the future)... It’s quite clear now that the ever-evolving plans for domestic surveillance embody the same principle... this latest program involves finding necessary information about all of us before we become terrorists. Combine that with a very broad view of who the “enemy” is (potentially including all those who disagree with the administration) and you have not only a rather frightening vision of the destruction of liberty in this country, you have a paranoid, secretive, incompetently run proto-panopticon ...
Rahul Mahajan is publisher of Empire Notes. He was in Fallujah recently and is currently writing and blogging from Baghdad. His latest book, “Full Spectrum Dominance: U.S. Power in Iraq and Beyond,” covers U.S. He can be reached at rahul (at) empirenotes.org.

american-style fascist state depends on electoral politics and major media for 'legitimacy' and public support...

Legislation Seeks to Ease Rules on Domestic Spying
Published: April 14, 2007
The administration proposed a bill on Friday to relax certain legal restrictions on the government’s ability to intercept telephone calls and other communications in the United States.
The proposal would change provisions in the primary law on domestic surveillance that the Bush administration says limit its ability to spy on the domestic and international communications of foreigners and would provide new legal immunity for telecommunications companies that have been sued for cooperating with the government as it conducts domestic wiretapping...
“I think this is all really going to have to await a decision by the courts on this matter,” said Mr. Specter, ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee.... and he said he was now working with Senator Dianne Feinstein, Democrat of California, on a plan that could attract bipartisan support....

Director Wants More Authority in Intelligence
April 5, 2007
The top United States intelligence official said Wednesday that his position lacked the authority needed to run the country’s 16 intelligence agencies. The job Mr. McConnell now holds was created in a restructuring after intelligence agencies failed to detect and thwart the Sept. 11 terrorist plots and underestimated sectarian violence in postwar Iraq....[note the neat little summary of U.S. psywar propaganda]

Mr. McConnell, who replaced John D. Negroponte as director seven weeks ago, said he was working on a plan to bring his job’s power in line with its responsibilities. He also said he wanted to shorten the time it took to get security clearances from a year to a matter of weeks, using processes developed in the financial services industry.

He said he would work with Congress to ensure a more stable flow of financing and improve oversight of operations....

Another focus will be on preventing terrorists or foreign governments from attacking or infiltrating computer systems... [note: see 4/23/7 issue of the digest for govt. plans to reconstruct a "secure" internet with control of users and content]One of his biggest worries, Mr. McConnell said, is a terrorist group attacking the computer network serving the United States’ financial services industry...

Fascism: American reality
By Larry Pinkney
July 6, 2006

The American Heritage Dictionary defines the word fascism as "a philosophy or system of government that is marked by stringent social and economic control, a strong centralized government usually headed by a dictator, and often a policy of belligerent nationalism." Moreover, and most importantly, it also defines fascism clearly and succinctly as "oppressive or dictatorial control." There are those who will sarcastically say that the political/social situation in and with America is not "that bad," when in fact things are far, far worse.

Whether or not one chooses to define this increasingly all-encompassing suppression of people in America as authoritarian, totalitarian or fascist is a ridiculously moot point for the overwhelming majority of people who have lost or are losing their already limited freedoms, their livelihoods and their very lives to the organized repression of this hypocritical, cynically racist and genocidal American state apparatus. The organized and sustained political, economic, social and cultural repression being waged by the American state against its own citizens and persons globally is nothing short of fascism.

At this precarious period in history, with repression intensifying on all levels, quibbling about whether or not America is technically fascist amounts to intellectual masturbation. The fact is that the internal and external repressive policies of the United States of America have already destroyed -- and continue to decimate -- millions of people inside America and throughout the world. Especially is this true with respect to the vast majority of people of color in the ghettos, reservations and barrios of the U.S., as well as in Africa, Asia, Central and South America, the Caribbean and elsewhere.

Contrary to the well perpetuated myth, fascism is not limited to storm troopers blatantly goose-stepping down streets and alleyways, engaging in bloody search and destroy missions. Germany's fascism under Adolf Hitler differed from Italy's fascism under Benito Mussolini, but they were both fascist nation states. Fascism has different forms, all of which are equally deadly, all of which must be identified, seriously resisted and stopped.

Complacently insisting that the organized state repressive apparatus of, in and by the United States must not be defined as fascism is incredibly dangerous, especially at this point in history. It's a bit like quibbling with a person who is in the death throes of drowning that he is not actually drowning but merely suffocating! No matter how it is defined, the person is dying, and immediate action is needed to save his or her life!

Whether it is defined as blatant fascism, benign fascism or so-called creeping fascism, it is still fascism; and if left unchecked, the end result is precisely the same: total and utter disenfranchisement under an authoritarian, repressive state apparatus. The urgency of this reality in America cannot be overstated.

The enormous internal and external destruction of peoples and cultures around the world caused by the fascistic policies of the United States -- cloaked in a mythical democracy -- have wreaked more havoc, misery and destruction upon peoples nationally and around the world than the blatantly fascist regimes of World War II Germany and Italy combined. Notwithstanding the over 100 million Black people who had previously been murdered as victims of Europe and America's African "legalized" slave trafficking, it should be remembered that many years subsequent, Adolf Hitler, in his published book "Mein Kampf," made it quite clear that the idea for waging the horrible genocide against Jews and other so-called "undesirables" had been borrowed from none other than the earlier genocide waged by the United States against the indigenous -- so called "Indian" -- peoples of America.

Ironically, many pundits of that 1930s era confidently and incorrectly argued that due to Germany's achievements in culture, politics, the arts and technology of that period, the unthinkable could never happen there. Obviously, they were wrong. Nevertheless, the enormous horrors inflicted by fascist Germany and Italy upon the world pale by comparison to those carried out by the much larger, deadlier and far more sophisticated United States of America, whose internal and external "news" and information propaganda machine would make the former fascist German and Italian propaganda machines green with envy.

Thus, to compare the contemporary United States, or any of its leaders, to the former fascist leaders Adolf Hitler or Benito Mussolini is utterly missing the point, as the U.S. is much, much worse, and its global power is far more encompassing and devastating.

It is important not to be fooled by the feigned surprise on the part of some at the limited, tip-of-the-iceberg revelations about U.S. torture, internal spying by the U.S. government and corporations, the militarization of the judicial process, massive national voter disenfranchisement and the demonstrated de facto contempt by the U.S. government and corporations for the Black victims of Hurricane Katrina, etc. Substantively, virtually none of these systemic practices are new but now are integrally part and parcel of an increasingly blatant form of American fascism.

No matter what individual may be the nominal "leader" of the United States, or what political party -- Republican or Democratic -- is in power, fascism has undeniably become an American reality. No matter what name or under what guise America cloaks its fascist policies, the undeniable fact is: America's own style of fascism is a reality here and now.

It is no wonder that Austrian born Arnold Schwarzenegger demonstrated no compunction or inhibition whatsoever in repeatedly and openly expressing his "admiration" for German fascist leader Adolf Hitler before going on later to become the Republican Party's governor of the state of California (see "Events Related to Schwarzenegger.")

Moreover, there is no sustained and overwhelming outrage and incensed repudiation of Schwarzenegger from the leadership of either the Democratic or Republican parties regarding his arrogant and chilling admiration for a fascist leader who was directly responsible for the dehumanization and murder of millions of people. A distinctly American version of fascism has taken root in this nation, and has created a political climate wherein politicians can openly embrace with admiration past fascist leaders without seriously jeopardizing their own political careers.

Furthermore, other than as an increasingly obvious propaganda tool to further its global hegemonic objectives, America's cynical racism and hypocrisy has made a meaningless mockery of words and phrases such as democracy, legality, freedom, fair judicial process and justice. This is a reality which most of the peoples of the world outside of the United States have already acknowledged.

Attempting to minimize the precariousness of the political situation in this nation by denying the reality of fascism in America does not change or stop it. Maintaining, like ostriches, the denial of fascism's active, significant existence and role in the American body politic, actually strengthens its stranglehold on the people of this nation and world. Only by removing our heads from the sand, facing up to, organizing against, resisting and struggling for systemic change here and now is there the real hope, for ourselves and for people around the world, of stopping and dismantling this fascist onslaught. Indeed, we can ill afford to do otherwise.

Larry Pinkney is a veteran of the Black Panther Party, the former Minister of Interior of the Republic of New Africa, a former political prisoner and the only American to have successfully self-authored his civil/political rights case to the United Nations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Email him at Lecconsult at aol.com.

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