Friday, September 28, 2007

Blackwater vs the Iraqi Government: Which Side Are You On?




Blackwater versus the government of Prime Minister of Nouri al-Maliki. Who to root for? The controversial private contractor or the corrupt administration? I don't want to be too glib about a serious matter. But this is a face-off with no clear good guy. Blackwater--accused of using excessive violence--is run by Erik Prince, who has been an important supporter of Christian fundamentalist outfits (such as the Family Research Counsel and James Dobson's Focus on the Family) and who has generously donated to Republican causes. The Maliki government is riddled with corruption--especially the interior ministry, a stronghold of Shia militias and the department in direct conflict with Blackwater. As regular readers of this blog know, a secret draft report prepared by the U.S. embassy describes the interior ministry as a criminal enterprise, and the Jones Commission recently IDed this ministry as essentially corrupt beyond remedy.

Prince rarely talks to the media, but a source who has recently talked with him tells me that Prince is using the corruption issue to defend Blackwater. As has been much reported, Blackwater has been operating in Iraq without a license. Most private military contractors (PMCs) do obtain licenses to work within in Iraq. But who awards such licenses? The interior ministry--and it charges the PMCs tens of thousands of dollars for the licenses, which have to be periodically renewed (that is, bought again). Prince is claiming that Blackwater did not want to make payments to a ministry controlled by criminal thugs, including possible anti-American insurgents. He told my source that he didn't want any Blackwater funds to end up in the hands of people shooting at Blackwater employees (and other Americans).

Prince may well have a point. (I'd be happy to talk to him about it.) It would be absurd for his company to make payments that end up financing militias that target his employees and Iraqi and American officials. But if this is indeed the ground reality, it shows that the bigger picture in Iraq is absurd. How can the U.S. government--with or without PMCs--accomplish the mission in Iraq if the government there is in the hands of militias and corrupt thugs? If Blackwater sees the Iraqi government (at least a significant portion of it) as the enemy, what's that tell us?

Meanwhile, Al-Ahram, an Egyptian publication reports:

Four cholera cases have been reported in Baghdad this week, amid fears of an epidemic. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), 1,500 cholera cases have been discovered in the country since 20 August. Polluted water supplies and poor sewage facilities are blamed for the spread of the disease. Iraq has no health minister, its last minister having fled to the US in June after being accused of involvement in sectarian violence.


No health minister? Maybe filling that post ought to be a benchmark.

Posted by David Corn at September 28, 2007 10:57 AM

27 comments:

capt said...

Mr. David Corn,

I am a bit confused. Blackwater is defending their non-payment of some BS license and THAT is the story?

How does Blackwater defend their actions? They are running around KILLING people and the story is their justification for not paying for the license?

1,500 cholera cases have been discovered in the country since 20 August.

Jeeze, the refugee crisis in Iraq (internal and external) is second only to Darfur. Many of the refugees will die. Sure cholera and many other diseases will spread. The occupier will not allow the chlorine trucks to deliver the necessary ingredients for sanitation. (duh)

It is going on six years and the “top tier” democrats will not commit to having our troops home by 2013.

Surely “No health minister? Maybe filling that post ought to be a benchmark?” is your very dry and wicked humor - benchmark - HA! The concept of benchmarks is so passe.

The only benchmark we need to consider is impeaching the SOB for starting this mess on a pack of lies - other than the all the death and destruction - all of the injury and loss of treasure, wealth, standing and respect - aggressive acts of war are a violation of International Law.

If the rule of law matters Bush and his merry band of moronic neocons will stand in the dock and answer for their crimes. I expect Bush will pass on before he is convicted as he always gets the pass, eh?




Kirk

capt said...

Blackwater 'mistakes' led to surge of Iraqi violence



Blackwater, one of the largest American security firms in Iraq, has come under criticism in the US for its role in a 2004 ambush in Fallujah that left four of its staff killed and the region in deadly chaos.

A House of Representatives report outlined the "unprepared and disorderly" build-up to the incident on 31 March, 2004, resulting in the employees – who were escorting a convoy – being executed and having their charred bodies hung from a bridge.

The disturbing attack was seen as a turning point for US public opinion after images of the charred bodies were shown around the world by the media. A few days later, the US military launched a major offensive in Fallujah, leading to one of the bloodiest periods since the 2003 invasion.

Yesterday's report, led by the Democrat Representative Henry Waxman, said Blackwater had ignored "multiple warnings" to stay away from Fallujah, described as "hottest zone in Iraq in unarmoured, underpowered vehicles."

Although Blackwater – one of the biggest security firms in Iraq – was warned by other contractors that it was dangerous to drive through Fallujah, the Blackwater guards "seemed unaware of the potential risk," the report says. Two members of the mission's team were cut prior to its departure, the report found.

Blackwater – also under investigation for the deaths of 11 Iraqis this month, in an incident reported by The Independent – rejected the report, accusing it of being a "one-sided version of this tragic incident".

But Mr Waxman said the committee's research showed that the company was in a chaotic state in the run-up to the incident and "mistake apparently compounded mistake".

On 16 September this year, 11 Iraqis were killed after Blackwater guards opened fire while escorting a convoy through Baghdad. The company is under a joint US-Iraqi investigation over the incident.

John Negroponte, the Deputy Secretary of State and a former ambassador to Iraq, told Congress: "Something went tragically wrong on 16 September and we are taking steps to address the matter."

He added in a statement that from January this year until 18 September, Blackwater conducted 1,873 missions protecting diplomats or visitors outside of the Green Zone in Baghdad – 56 of which saw weapons fired by the firm.

The findings come as a fresh leaked transcript of a conversation between President Bush and his Spanish counterpart President Aznar before the invasion of Iraq in February 2003 show Mr Bush saying: "We have to get rid of Saddam. In two weeks we will be ready militarily. We will be in Baghdad at the end of March",

The comments – which appear to show disregard for whether or not a second UN resolution would be passed at the time – appear to further contradict a speech made by Tony Blair to the House of Commons on 23 February 2003, in which he said: "I detest his [Saddam's] regime. But even now he can save it by complying with the UN's demand. Even now, we are prepared to go the extra step to achieve disarmament peacefully."


More HERE

*****end of clip*****

On the question posed: “Blackwater vs the Iraqi Government: Which Side Are You On?

Neither, is it possible BOTH the Iraqi government is totally corrupt AND Blackwater is running around killing people like some matinee idol cowboy saving the world from the Islamofacists without the license in question?



capt

capt said...

Situation report on cholera outbreak in northern Iraq, 03 Sep 2007


1. OVERVIEW

Since 23 August 2007, a three to four fold increase of acute watery diarrhea cases were being reported from one of the teaching hospitals of Sulaymaniyah province in Northern Iraq. Laboratory test performed on stool specimens confirmed Vibrio cholerae serogroup 01 Inaba as the causative pathogen for these reported acute watery diarrhea cases.

So far between 23 August and 02 September 2007, the cumulative number of cases of acute watery diarrhoea reported from four out of eleven districts of Sulaymaniyah province stands at 2,930 including 9 deaths with an overall case fatality rate of 0.30%. Of these reported cases, Vibrio cholerae has been laboratory confirmed in 187 stool samples.

On the other hand, Vibrio cholerae serogroup 01 Inaba was isolated from a stool specimen for the first time ever on 19 August 2007 from Kirkuk province of Northern Iraq where stool specimens are routinely collected and tested for detecting enteric pathogens as part of routine surveillance for diarrhoeal diseases which is in place in all hospitals of the province. Despite the fact that no discernible increase in case load of acute diarrhea have been observed between two comparable periods of 2007 and 2006, a total of 2,968 cases of acute diarrhoeal syndrome including 1 death (CFR: 0.033%) were reported from Kirkuk province between 29 July and 26 August 2007. Of these reported cases, Vibrio cholerae has been isolated from stool specimens of 101 cases.

2. PATTERN OF TRANSMISSION IN SULAYMANIYAH PROVINCE

As of 1st of September, the outbreak, since reported on 23 August, has spread to four out of eleven districts in the province (Please see the map below) exposing over 1,502,009 people at great public health risk. No surveillance system for diarrhoeal diseases existed in the province before the outbreak started on 23 August. Only recently with support from WHO Office of Iraq, the provincial health authority has started collecting surveillance data on cases reported to the health centres and hospitals. Therefore, due to inadequacy of reporting and other limitations of the surveillance system, the cumulative number of cases of cholera reported so far from the province may be grossly underreported and may not represent the true burden of the disease.

The available report suggests that the outbreak first started in Sulaymaniyah district and then spread to other three districts (Rania, Halabja and Chamchamal). Apart from these four districts, no laboratory confirmed case of Vibrio cholerae has, so far, been reported from any of the remaining six districts of the province. It is unclear at this stage what has been the source of infection for this current wave of cholera in the province.

The daily progression of cases as shown in figure-1 does not reflect any particular cyclical trend. The several spikes that are shown in the epi curve may be due to incomplete reporting as well as inadequacy of reporting. As the surveillance system improves and better quality data are available form the field, better understanding on the trends as well as on the progression of the outbreak over time would be possible. Recent information received from the field suggests that number of severe cases with symptoms and signs of cholera/acute watery diarrhea reporting to health centres and hospitals might have been dropping as compared to previous week, but cumulative numbers are, probably, increasing since the surveillance coverage is expanding with more and more health centres reporting on a daily basis and due to increased public awareness, more and more cases with mild symptoms and signs synonymous with symptoms of cholera are reporting to health centres. Nevertheless, given the data that are available, it clearly shows that the transmission is still continuing and likely to spread to other adjoining districts and the risk of exposure would prevail unless the control measures can specifically target areas which remains within the epicenter of this current outbreak.

As the information flow improves over the next couple of days, public health risk assessment of the current situation could possibly be done through a more comprehensive analysis of the current epidemiological situation.



Full Report (pdf* format - 239.2 Kbytes)

More HERE

capt said...

'The President Has Accepted Ethnic Cleansing'



Investigative journalist Seymour Hersh has consistently led the way in telling the story of what's really going on in Iraq and Iran. SPIEGEL ONLINE spoke to him about America's Hitler, Bush's Vietnam, and how the US press failed the First Amendment.

[...]

SPIEGEL ONLINE : So the US is over four years into a war that is likely going to end in a disaster. How valid are the comparisons with Vietnam?

Hersh : The validity is that the US is fighting a guerrilla war and doesn't know the culture. But the difference is that at a certain point, because of Congressional and public opposition, the Vietnam War was no longer tenable. But these guys now don't care. They see it but they don't care.

SPIEGEL ONLINE : If the Iraq war does end up as a defeat for the US, will it leave as deep a wound as the Vietnam War did?

Hersh : Much worse. Vietnam was a tactical mistake. This is strategic. How do you repair damages with whole cultures? On the home front, though, we'll rationalize it away. Don't worry about that. Again, there's no learning curve. No learning curve at all. We'll be ready to fight another stupid war in another two decades.

SPIEGEL ONLINE : Of course, preventing that is partially the job of the media. Have reporters been doing a better job recently than they did in the run-up to the Iraq War?

Hersh : Oh yeah. They've done a better job since. But back then, they blew it. When you have a guy like Bush who's going to move the infamous Doomsday Clock forward, and he's going to put everybody in jeopardy and he's secretive and he doesn't tell Congress anything and he's inured to what we write. In such a case, we (journalists) become more important. The First Amendment failed and the American press failed the Constitution. We were jingoistic. And that was a terrible failing. I'm asked the question all the time: What happened to my old paper, the New York Times? And I now say, they stink. They missed it. They missed the biggest story of the time and they're going to have to live with it.


More HERE

*****end of clip*****

I’ve posted before that the really big story is the way the media failed. I’m still waiting to hear that story.

"The Press was protected so that it could bare the secrets of the government and inform the people. Only a free and unrestrained press can effectively expose deception in government. And paramount among the responsibilities of a free press is the duty to prevent any part of the government from deceiving the people." : Justice Hugo L. Black - (1886-1971) US Supreme Court Justice - Source: New York Times v. Unites States (Pentagon Papers) 1971




capt

capt said...

Congress Quietly Approves Billions More for Iraq War



The Senate agreed on Thursday to increase the federal debt limit by $850 billion -- from $8.965 trillion to $9.815 trillion -- and then proceeded to approve a stop-gap spending bill that gives the Bush White House at least $9 billion in new funding for its war in Iraq.

Additionally, the administration has been given emergency authority to tap further into a $70 billion "bridge fund" to provide new infusions of money for the occupation while the Congress works on appropriations bills for the Department of Defense and other agencies.

Translation: Under the guise of a stop-gap spending bill that is simply supposed to keep the government running until a long-delayed appropriations process is completed -- probably in November -- the Congress has just approved a massive increase in war funding.

The move was backed by every senator who cast a vote, save one.

Wisconsin Senator Russ Feingold, the maverick Democrat who has led the fight to end the war and bring U.S. troops home from Iraq, was on the losing end of the 94-1 vote. (The five senators who did not vote, all presidential candidates who are more involved in campaigning than governing, were Democrats Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and Joe Biden and Republicans John McCain and Sam Brownback.)

Said Feingold, "I am disappointed that we are about to begin the 2008 fiscal year without having enacted any of the appropriations bills for that year. I am even more disappointed that we voted on a continuing resolution that provides tens of billions of dollars to continue the misguided war in Iraq but does not include any language to bring that war to a close. We need to keep the federal government operating and make sure our brave troops get all the equipment and supplies they need, but we should not be giving the President a blank check to continue a war that is hurting our national security."

In the House, the continuing resolution passed by a vote of 404 to 14, with 14 other members not voting.

The "no" votes in the House, all cast by anti-war members, came from one Republican, Ron Paul of Texas, and 13 Democrats: Oregon's Earl Blumenauer, Missouri's William Clay, Minnesota's Keith Ellison, California's Bob Filner, Massachusetts' Barney Frank, New York's Maurice Hinchey, Ohio's Dennis Kucinich, Washington's Jim McDermott, New Jersey's Donald Payne, California's Barbara Lee, Maxine Waters, Diane Watson and Lynn Woolsey.

That means that, of the 2008 presidential candidates, only Republican Paul and Democrat Kucinich voted against giving the Bush administration a dramatic -- if not particularly well publicized -- infusion of new money for the war.


More HERE

*****end of clip*****

OMG - Shhhh - someone might notice.



capt

Gerald said...

I could never be on the side of American government sponsored terrorism. Blackwater is a terrorist army that will soon be terrorizing American citizens.

capt said...

No Hope in the Democrats



Democrats signal capitulation on Iraq – and Iran


As the cool undercurrents of Indian summer hint at winter frosts to come, the rhetoric of the Democrats at their most recent presidential debate foreshadows their capitulation to the War Party on the two vital issues of the day: Iraq and Iran. The first fifteen minutes of the debate were devoted entirely to these issues, and, to anyone who wants to find hope in the prospect of a Democrat in the White House, watching the performance of the Seven Dwarves & Gravel (I'll resist the temptation to dub him the Troll) was a depressing experience.

"Will you pledge that by January 2013, the end of your first term more than five years from now, there will be no U.S. troops in Iraq?" – moderator Tim Russert's question was posed to one and all, and the Clinton-Obama-Edwards axis of frontrunners all refused to take the pledge, albeit each in their own way.

Obama: "I think it's hard to project four years from now, and I think it would be irresponsible. We don't know what contingency will be out there.

Hillary: "I agree with Barack. It is very difficult to know what we're going to be inheriting."

Edwards: "I cannot make that commitment."

If your illusions in the Democrats as the "peace party" aren't shattered, then your capacity for self-delusion is limitless.

We're going to be in Iraq for at least through the first term of the next President, and likely far beyond that – and it doesn't matter what the voters voted for, or think they voted for. That's American "democracy" for you, a system that George W. Bush wants to export at gunpoint to the rest of the world. No wonder the rest of the world is saying "No thanks."


More HERE

capt said...

Blackwater Down



The frightening -- and possibly illegal -- presence of heavily armed private forces in New Orleans only demonstrates what everyone already feared: the utter breakdown of the government.


The men from Blackwater USA arrived in New Orleans right after Katrina hit.

The company known for its private security work guarding senior US diplomats in Iraq beat the federal government and most aid organizations to the scene in another devastated Gulf. About 150 heavily armed Blackwater troops dressed in full battle gear spread out into the chaos of New Orleans. Officially, the company boasted of its forces "join[ing] the hurricane relief effort." But its men on the ground told a different story.

Some patrolled the streets in SUVs with tinted windows and the Blackwater logo splashed on the back; others sped around the French Quarter in an unmarked car with no license plates. They congregated on the corner of St. James and Bourbon in front of a bar called 711, where Blackwater was establishing a makeshift headquarters. From the balcony above the bar, several Blackwater guys cleared out what had apparently been someone's apartment. They threw mattresses, clothes, shoes and other household items from the balcony to the street below. They draped an American flag from the balcony's railing. More than a dozen troops from the 82nd Airborne Division stood in formation on the street watching the action.

Armed men shuffled in and out of the building as a handful told stories of their past experiences in Iraq. "I worked the security detail of both Bremer and Negroponte," said one of the Blackwater guys, referring to the former head of the US occupation, L. Paul Bremer, and former US Ambassador to Iraq John Negroponte. Another complained, while talking on his cell phone, that he was getting only $350 a day plus his per diem. "When they told me New Orleans, I said, 'What country is that in?'" he said. He wore his company ID around his neck in a case with the phrase Operation Iraqi Freedom printed on it.

In an hourlong conversation I had with four Blackwater men, they characterized their work in New Orleans as "securing neighborhoods" and "confronting criminals." They all carried automatic assault weapons and had guns strapped to their legs. Their flak jackets were covered with pouches for extra ammunition.



More HERE

*****end of clip*****

soon be terrorizing American citizens.

Already has happened.



capt

Gerald said...

What we may not realize that when Congress gave Hitler Bush and his Nazi regime permission to commit mass murders and war crimes against humanity without the possibility of ever being prosecuted, I guess as Nazi Americans we, too, can commit mass murders and war crimes and we will never have to be prosecuted for our crimes. The culture of violence in Nazi America is EVERLASTING.

Gerald said...

That's right and I forgot about Katrina. We are already under Nazi siege.

The quiet vote to continue to support the Iraq war means that the culture of violence in Nazi America will never end. By the end of the fiscal year 2009 we will have spent over a trillion dollars for our presence in Iraq and our mass murders and war crimes against humanity.

Our sins of the father will be passed to our children and onto their children. We truly are a murderous and violent lot. We have no shame and we have removed Jesus Christ from our lives.

If someone says to me that we are Christian nation, I really need a good puke.

Gerald said...

If the Iraq government is so corrupt why do we think we can bring that country a democracy? We should bring our troops home now!!!!! But, we can't because our culture of violence means to extend violence and not limit it.

Congress has voted to partition Iraq. That has been Nazi America's goal from the get go!!!!!

Congress should have voted that way when Baghdad fell and bring the troops home. But, that's not Nazi American mentality!!!!! Our mentality is to carry out endless violence.

capt said...

"The lowest standards of ethics of which a right-thinking man can possibly conceive is taught to the common soldier whose trade is to shoot his fellow men. In youth he may have learned the command, 'Thou shalt not kill,' but the ruler takes the boy just as he enters manhood and teaches him that his highest duty is to shoot a bullet through his neighbor's heart - and this, unmoved by passion or feeling or hatred, and without the least regard to right or wrong, but simply because his ruler gives the word." Clarence Darrow, Resist Not Evil

=
"Law is often the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the right of an individual.": Thomas Jefferson to I. Tiffany, 1819

=
"As nightfall does not come at once, neither does oppression. In both instances, there is a twilight when everything remains seemingly unchanged. And it is in such twilight that we all must be most aware of change in the air -- however slight -- lest we become unwitting victims of the darkness." : William O Douglas


===

Thanks ICH Newsletter!

Carey said...

Leave it to Mr. Corn to stop me in my overlyloaded tracks. He zeros in on the most revealing facts once again.

Excellent comments Kirk.

Blackwater really, really scares me. If anything, perhaps it's them we should be more frightened of over Cheney.

To save time (I must) a DP--double post:

I think for some people Clinton's vote on Iran and naming the Guard terrorist is a straw that broke that old camel's back. She doesn't have a leg to stand on now regarding her earlier vote on Iraq.

That vote also proves the point--she cannot be totally trusted with that hawkfinger.

Gerald said...

Pro-Democracy Means Anti-Fascism

David B. Benson said...

Tom Hayden reports on a mildly encouraging development regarding Iraqi sectarianism.

On (In?) The Nation.

Gerald said...

6 die from brain-eating amoeba in lake

Please read this article! Will global warming spread the problem? This is a heat-loving amoeba. It does better as temperatures rise.

Gerald said...

We must be stewards of the environment. The environment is precious and we must take good care of it.

capt said...

Mysterious Energy Burst Stuns Astronomers



In a shock finding, astronomers using CSIRO’s Parkes telescope have detected a huge burst of radio energy from the distant universe that could open up a new field in astrophysics.

The research team, led by Assistant Professor Duncan Lorimer of West Virginia University, reported its discovery in the journal Science Express.

The radio burst appears to have originated at least one-and-a-half billion light-years [500 Mpc] away but was startlingly strong.

“Normally the kind of cosmic activity we’re looking for at this distance would be very faint but this was so bright that it saturated the equipment,” said Professor Matthew Bailes of Swinburne University in Melbourne.

The burst was so bright that at the time it was first recorded it was dismissed as man-made radio interference. It put out a huge amount of power (10exp33 Joules), equivalent to a large (2000MW) power station running for two billion billion years.

“The burst may have been produced by an exotic event such as the collision of two neutron stars or be the last gasp of a black hole as it evaporates completely,” Professor Lorimer said.

The burst lasted just five milliseconds.

It was found by David Narkevik, an undergraduate at the West Virginia University, when he re-analysed data taken with the Parkes telescope six years ago.

Although they’ve found only one burst, the astronomers can estimate how often they occur.

“We’d expect to see a few bursts over the whole sky every day,” said Dr John Reynolds, Officer in Charge at CSIRO’s Parkes Observatory.

“A new telescope being built in Western Australia will be ideal for finding more of these rare, transient events.

”The Australian SKA Pathfinder, which is going to be built by 2012, will have a very wide field of view—be able to see a very large piece of sky—which is exactly what you want for this kind of work,” he said.

Meanwhile, the researchers will comb archived data from the Parkes telescope for more radio bursts.

The discovery of the radio burst is similar to the discovery of gamma-ray bursts in the 1970s, when military satellites revealed flashes of gamma-rays appearing all over the sky. One kind—the so-called long-period bursts—was eventually identified as the explosion (supernova) of a massive star with the associated formation of a black hole.

Note: This story has been adapted from material provided by CSIRO Australia.


More HERE

Gerald said...

I borrowed this quote from Saturday's DWF blog. We now have someone in office who emulates the American people and their values.

Hitler Bush is what Nazi America aspires to be!!!


" . . . all the odds are on the man who is, intrinsically, the most devious and mediocre — the man who can most easily (and) adeptly disperse the notion that his mind is a virtual vacuum. The presidency tends, year by year, to go to such men. As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day, the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron." H.L. Menchen

Carey said...

It is really too bad you don't get paid Capt. Wow. This blog is a fine demonstration of knowing where to look for the gems.

I’ve posted before that the really big story is the way the media failed. I’m still waiting to hear that story.

I wish I had more time cuz you bring up totally relevant and well-timed topics Kirk.

Is it the media who failed? Or capitalism? Afterall (and I'm being simplistic here), the corps (corporations) took over our vehicle of checkpoints and counterbalance to buttress the democracy. Capitalism acted to thwart all the wondrous democratic ideals of our founding fathers.

It's a societal failure. It's hard to believe we can be so stupid when you look at the marvels of evolution. But when I look at my personal life--oh yeah, we're a stupid lot.


Gerald,

I don't say it enough, but I love your posts. What a strong feeler you are.

capt said...

Gerald,

The best collection of HL quotes I have found is:

http://www.lhup.edu/~dsimanek/mencken.htm

or HERE


capt

capt said...

Carey,

Thanks and "Is it the media who failed? Or capitalism?"

I find it difficult to compare an economic system characterized by private or corporate ownership of capital goods to the general group I use the term media to describe.

Overall, predatory capitalism is effected by the media but media is under the yoke of capital ownership - so a symbiotic relationship that welds the two together into something like FOX news?


UGH!

capt

capt said...

Shifting Targets

The Administration’s plan for Iran.

by Seymour M. Hersh

David B. Benson said...

Capt --- I was going to post that, but you did it first.

Very good summation, IMHO...

Gerald said...

capt, thank you for the Mencken link!!!

capt said...

"The trouble with most folks isn't so much their ignorance, as knowing so many things that ain't so." : Josh Billings - [Henry Wheeler Shaw] (1818-1885) American humorist and lecturer

=
"Our government has kept us in a perpetual state of fear -­ kept us in a continuous stampede of patriotic fervour ­- with the cry of grave national emergency. Always, there has been some terrible evil at home, or some monstrous foreign power that was going to gobble us up if we did not blindly rally behind it.": General Douglas MacArthur - (1880-1964) WWII Supreme Allied Commander of the Southwest Pacific, Supreme United Nations Commander 1957

=
"What happened here was the gradual habituation of the people, little by little, to being governed by surprise; to receiving decisions deliberated in secret; to believing that the situation was so complicated that the government had to act on information which the people could not understand, or so dangerous that, even if the people could not understand it, it could not be released because of national security. And their sense of identification with Hitler, their trust in him, made it easier to widen this gap and reassured those who would otherwise have worried about it: Milton Mayer - Excerpt from pages 166-73 of "They Thought They Were Free" First published in 1955 HERE


===

Thanks ICH Newsletter!

capt said...

New Thread