Saturday, November 18, 2006

Don Williams' New Column



Kye Bay
Print by Roy Henry Vickers

Rumsfeld’s Replacement Casts A Long, Dark Shadow

by Don Williams



He’s the darkness reaching out for the darkness, it’s been said of Richard Nixon. And looking back, it’s hard to argue. Secrecy, absence of light, was his default position. But suppose you’re another president of similar dispositions. A man well connected to those who stand in the shadows and manipulate other nations’ peoples like pawns. In that case, you might reach out to former CIA Director, author and professor, Robert Gates, “the ultimate insider,” in his own words, to become your new secretary of defense.

In another age, tapping a CIA chief to head up the military might’ve been a major controversy. In the post 9/11 world it hardly raises a brow. He’s a realist say supporters, and no puppet of Neocons. He’ll play it smart.

Yes, Gates will play it shrewdly, cleverly. He’s a very wily man. But smart? Please permit dissent from the heartland. Gates helped create the very enemies he’ll be empowered to fight. Consider the fiascos he had a hand in.

* U.S. military aid for Saddam Hussein. "Gates was in charge of the directorate that prepared the intelligence information that was passed on to Iraq,” during the Iran-Iraq War, said Iowa Sen. Tom Harkin during Gates' confirmation hearings for CIA Director on Nov. 7, 1991. “The secret intelligence sharing operation with Iraq was not only a highly questionable and possibly illegal operation, but also may have jeopardized American lives and our national interests. The photo reconnaissance, highly sensitive electronic eavesdropping, and narrative texts provided to Saddam may not only have helped him in Iraq's war against Iran, but also in the recent Gulf War." In other words, Gates had a central role in turning Iraq into a regional power under Saddam. Take away Gates’ aid to Saddam and two U.S.-Iraqi wars are likely avoided.

* Iran-Contra. According to the Nov. 20 issue of Newsweek, Gates lied to Congress about this fiasco, which brought shame to the Reagan administration. During the Iran-Contra operation, America sold anti-aircraft weaponry to Iran at the same time that Gates was giving aerial targeting maps and other intelligence to Iraq. Could anything be more cynical during an Iran-Iraq War that resulted in a million casualties? But it gets worse. With money gained from such sales, our government empowered the Contra “freedom fighters,” as some like to call them, in Nicaragua, but they were terrorists by any definition of the word. This in direct violation of laws passed by Congress.

* Empowering the Taliban and al-Qaida. Gates’ role in this is unclear. What is clear is that Gates at least cheered on the arming and training of fundamentalist Muslims who later resurfaced as movers and shakers inside the Taliban and al-Qaida. In his book “From the Shadows: The Ultimate Insider's Story of Five Presidents and How They Won the Cold War,” Gates outlines how we began infiltrating Afghanistan with special forces during the Carter Administration. It was a self-conscious effort to lure the Soviet Union into invading Afghanistan in an effort “to give the Soviets their Vietnam.” Then, under Presidents Reagan and Bush 41, we trained, armed and otherwise empowered radical fundamentalist Muslims to initiate a jihad against the Soviet Union and throw them out. The mission was successful, the Soviet Union left, but the Taliban and al-Qaida filled the vacuum and soon set their sights on us, even as we finagled for rights to build energy pipelines across their country.

* Gates headed up the Soviet Division of the CIA, and all through the 1980s, the CIA was clueless about the economic collapse of the Soviet Union. Had the CIA reported how close the Soviet Union was to economic ruin, our shadow-government might not have deemed it necessary to empower fundamentalist Muslims in Afghanistan. In short, our current miseries might’ve been avoided had Gates been wiser and less clever. Many other questions have been raised about him. Does he have a stake in voting machine companies, as some allege? What was his role in “the October surprise” which allegedly delayed the release of all those American hostages in Iran until after the 1980 elections?

Make no mistake. When it comes to assessing the value of human life, Gates casts a cold eye. Maybe such a perspective saves lives. Is it a defensible position to say we should be changing sides, manipulating events, undermining governments, deciding who lives, who dies? Before you answer, ask yourself this:

How many innocent people have died as a direct or indirect result of Gates’ and others’ manipulations? Millions in Afghanistan? Millions in Iran and Iraq? Hundreds of thousands in Central America? Thousands more in Kuwait?

How many women went back under the veil in Afghanistan and Iraq? How many were beheaded for sexual indiscretions? How many treasures of world art were smashed to smithereens? Did you count the bombed out hotels in Bali? Attacks on our embassies in Africa? The London subway attacks? The Cole? Don’t forget 3000, killed on 9/11.

Yes, we must oppose treacherous terrorists who threaten us, but in planning for the future we should remember just who set them up in the first places. Such individuals should not be offered any more opportunities to wreak more havoc.

23 comments:

Micki said...

DEN, I'll read your new Don Williams' column right now! But, I was prepared to post this, so I will...but, first, WHAT A BEAUTIFUL SCENE you've selected for today's essay!

Democrats Warned Not to Block Judges

Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, who will become minority leader Jan. 4, told the conservative Federalist Society Friday not to feel bad about the Senate election results because Republicans will hold 49 seats in a body that requires 60 votes to end a filibuster and bring legislation or presidential nominees to a final vote.

If the ``Democrats want our cooperation, they'll give the president's judicial nominees an up-or-down vote,'' McConnell said.

Vice President Dick Cheney told the same group Friday that Republicans' loss of Congress in last week's election won't dissuade Bush from continuing to nominate strict-constructionist judges to the federal bench.

+++++++++++++++
Surprise, surprise. The bipartisan PHOTO-OP talk was all talk. bush said, "Bipartisanship is off the table!" Well, not in those exact words. ;-))

Jeanne -- just curious, how did it come about that you saw a taser demonstration? Was it for first-hand information for your book?

Micki said...

The more things change, the more they remain the same -- 15 years later, and they COULD CALL IT IN

But...back to the lovely print of Kye Bay. I've been there -- on Vancouver Island, BC. It looks a lot like our San Juan Islands here in Washington State. Beautiful.

DEN said...

Micki, Roy is from your neck of the woods, from his site;
The Canadian artist Roy Henry Vickers is well known around the world for his paintings, prints, carvings and designs. Numerous museums and private collections both in Canada and internationally showcase his distinctive work, which fuses traditional First Nations themes with contemporary European realism. Roy has received several awards for artistic excellence and community leadership, including being named to the prestigious “Order of British Columbia”. Roy currently lives and works in Hazelton, BC, producing a steady flow of sought-after limited edition prints each year.

He is an exceptional artist among many in BC, for more His site.

Gerald said...

Gates will be confirmed. We must remember that he was part of the Iran-Contra dealings that were treasonous acts. More treason is the Nazi Party's trademark.

Regarding the taser incident at UCLA we need to understand the library policy is to show your student card in order to remain in the library after 11:00 PM. The tasered student did not want to show his student card. So, he was tasered. Some laws are necessary in life.

After the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 it became politically incorrect to ask questions and now we have part of the problem that unmasks Nazi America as a nation comprised of spoiled sniveling brats.

Gerald said...

The Dumbest Quote

No wonder his approval rating is at 7% in his country. He must be brain dead.

Micki said...

You may have already heard this joke... but did you hear the one that GOPher Tommy Thompson thinks he's presidential timber? He's exploring it...

Who? You know, that guy from Wisconsin.

DEN said...

Put CHEESE in the WH!?

Jeanne said...

Gates scares me.

Micki,
I saw the demonstration in a Citizen's Policing Class. My city gives a glass every year to people who want to know about the inner workings of police work. I got to fire a gun in their firing range. I was dead on with my aim.

I will say when the cop, who is an expert firearms person, was showing the class different weapons the cops use I was trying to make myself as small as possible. Guns scare the hell out of me. Tazers do too. Well....so do eppie pens for people allergic to bee stings. Does that make me a wuss?

Anyway, it took the class many years ago for my writing. I volunteer for the police. I've been on ride alongs. I've worked on stake outs. I've done Kid Care (taking pictures of kids for a passport type thing that a parent can have at the mall or on a trip). I've helped with blood drives, Santa Cop, traffic control for the parade (that's fun...you want to see pissed? Tell somebody they can't drive on the road after it's been blocked off for the parage), traffic control for 5 K runs and lots of other stuff.

Jeanne said...

Parade that is.

Gerald said...

Poverty List and Organizations

Gerald said...

Money

Gerald said...

Corporate America is not a good steward for millions of Americans!!!

Gerald said...

Why Values Matter

Gerald said...

The Power of Humor

Gerald said...

God, thank You for giving me another day.

Let me face my troubles today - the big and the small - with a happy heart filled with Your unending love.

Let me appreciate the moments of joy You send me this day. Let me see the cares of others as an opportunity to bring Your great compassion to those who most need it.

And God, I know that You see and know all things - all of the world's loveliness, and all of its harshness, too.

So on this day that You have given me, I ask that I may bring Your joy with me as I share myself with others.

And I pray that You will be warmed by the happiness of Your children.

Finally, God, let me never forget that in all things, in gladness or sorrow,

You who are all love and joy and hope are always by my side.

Amen.

Gerald said...

Strategies for Stress

Gerald said...

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
courage to change the things I can
and wisdom to know the difference
—living one day at a time,
enjoying one moment at a time,
accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
taking as He did, this world as it is,
not as I would have it;
trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His will;
that I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him forever.

DEN said...

Thanks Gerald!

Micki said...

Hey, Jeanne, cringing from an epi-pen does not make you a wuss! My husband never leaves home without his -- idiopathic anaphylaxsis, allergy of unknown origin. He never knows what might trigger using his epi-pen. Those things ARE weapons! Funny, tho, no one blinks an eye when he carries one on to an airplane. I wonder if he'd be given a "pass" if he wasn't who he is -- a man of a certain age, white, kinda of ordinary by all counts (don't tell him I said that)!

That is so interesting that you've gone to those classes and have ridden "shotgun" (so to speak) with the local police. I figure you would have a good aim -- I shot a gun, too, and so did I. With no practice.

Too bad you weren't riding shotgun for Harry Whittington. You could have gotten the first shot.

º¿carol said...

Want you all to know I've been keeping up even though I've been MIA. Been busy.

Jeanne, cool story about hanging with the cops, etc. I wouldn't have anything interesting like that to report about my life.

Micki, you always post good shit. I wouldn't miss a thing you write. Always food for thought FOR sure and stuff I've missed.

Micki said...

Woo boy! Sy Hersh isn't often wrong.

Carol, gee thanks! Jeanne, I read an aticle in our local rag this a.m. about the county sheriff's office offering citizens an opportunity to spend the weekend in jail -- to see how it works from the inside. I'm not sure I'd do that voluntarily! DEN, thanks for the artist's link! Native American art really appeals to me -- my neck of the woods is filled with possibilities in that arena! Gerald, I loved the article you linked about the importance of humor and laughter! Very poignant!

CIA analysis finds no Iranian nuclear weapons drive: report
19/11/2006 04h18


WASHINGTON (AFP) - A classifed draft CIA assessment has found no firm evidence of a secret drive by Iran to develop nuclear weapons, as alleged by the White House, a top US investigative reporter has said.

Seymour Hersh, writing in an article for the November 27 issue of the magazine The New Yorker released in advance, reported on whether the administration of Republican President George W. Bush was more, or less, inclined to attack Iran after Democrats won control of Congress last week.

A month before the November 7 legislative elections, Hersh wrote, Vice President Dick Cheney attended a national-security discussion that touched on the impact of Democratic victory in both chambers on Iran policy.

"If the Democrats won on November 7th, the vice president said, that victory would not stop the administration from pursuing a military option with Iran," Hersh wrote, citing a source familiar with the discussion.

Cheney said the White House would circumvent any legislative restrictions "and thus stop Congress from getting in its way," he said.

Micki said...

Native vote is BIG in Montana

...speaking of Native Americans, here's a good story!

Micki said...

If you have the time...and the inclination... read this 3-part article from March, 1989 -- pay particular attention to Part Two -- and you will have some understanding of the appeal and genesis of the current paranoid mind in American politics

Buzzflash has a posting today lamenting the influence of the LaRouchians on its site.

It's a VERY raining, windy day here again...hence the time for this crapola! ;-))

Later!