When it comes to "genocide," Guardian UK’s George Monbiot has pulled a Hitchens

May 22, 2012 7 comments
George Monbiot having a fit

There is just something about British left intellectuals.

Christopher Hitchens fell from grace when he allowed his atheism to become a tool for Western imperialism.

Now The Guardian UK’s George Monbiot has pulled a Hitchens by allowing his outrage of “genocide” to become a tool for Western imperialism.

It started last year with his tirade against writers David Peterson and Edward Herman over their book The Politics of Genocide. George just couldn’t believe they wrote what they did. By challenging the popular narrative of what happened in Rwanda and Srebrenica they were guilty of being “genocide deniers.” (See “George Monbiot and the Guardian on ‘Genocide Denial’ and ‘Revisionism’ ” for Peterson’s and Herman’s rebuttal)

Monbiot still buys the propaganda narrative put out by the West, and has been foaming at the mouth like a rabid dog ever since. His obsession has infected him like a virus, and now Monbiot has even published an email exchange he had with Noam Chomsky, who wrote the foreword for The Politics of Genocide. (Really bad form, George.) Monbiot tries and tries to get Chomsky to turn on Herman and Peterson, to which Noam says he will not because to do so “would be sheer cowardice.”

As someone who has read The Politics of Genocide (a few times), and who has checked the notes, I see nothing controversial. In fact, I highly recommend the book—especially the second edition because it has a new introduction with the compare and contrast of the conflicts in Libya and Sri Lanka.

I have also read The Srebrenica Massacre: Evidence, Context, Politics, the book on Srebrenica that Herman contributed to. Again, I don’t see what the fuss is about.

In regards to Srebrenica, Herman, Peterson and the others who contributed to The Srebrenica Massacre: Evidence, Context, Politics point out a few important facts.

In The Politics of Genocide, Herman and Peterson write that,

The case for eight thousand “men and boys” being executed at Srebrenica is extremely thin, resting in good part on the difficulty in separating executions from battle killings (of which there were many in the July 1995 Srebrenica actions), partly on highly contestable witness evidence (much under coercive plea bargaining), and an interest and passionate will-to-believe the worst of the thoroughly demonized Serbs.

This is why Herman, Peterson, et al. challenge the narrative. With such incomplete information it makes perfect sense to challenge the narrative that they were 8,000 Bosniaks who were the victims of “genocide” by Serb forces.

This is also quite possibly why Chomsky wrote to Monbiot that,

A second point raised in my letter to you (and in the article) is the vulgarization of the phrase “genocide,” so extreme as to amount to virtual Holocaust denial, and the reason why I rarely use the term. Take a concrete case: the murder of thousands of men and boys after women and children are allowed to flee if they can get away.

I’m referring to Fallujah, different from Srebrenica in many ways, among them that in the latter case the women and children were trucked out, and in the former case the destruction and slaughter was so extreme that current studies in medical journals estimate the scale of radiation-related deaths and diseases at beyond the level of Hiroshima. I would not however call it “genocide,” nor would you, and if the word were used, the more extreme apologists for western crimes, like Kamm, would go utterly berserk. Another of many illustrations of the two basic facts.

And of course, the information available on Rwanda is so overwhelming it’s astounding. There are just too many holes in the popular narrative which claims there was a genocide of Tutsi’s at the hands of “Hutu extremists” who planned the assassination of President Habyarimana and the violence that followed. Which is why I seriously doubt George Monbiot has read The Politics of Genocide, followed up with the notes, or anything. If he has, then I can only conclude that he is being intentionally dishonest.

Because had he read the Gersony report, he would have read about a “scene of systematic and sustained killing and persecution of civilian Hutu populations” by Kagame’s forces.

Had Monbiot read the U.S. State Department Memo to Secretary of State Warren Christopher he would know that “RPA and Tutsi civilian surrogates had killed 10,000 or more Hutu civilians per month, with the RPA accounting for 95% of the killing.”

George also could have read the affidavit of U.N investigator Michael Hourigan which notes that he found “considerable detail about information implicating President Kagame” in the assassination of former President Habyarimana. This was the event that kicked off the genocide, and which was quickly followed by a massive, organized RPF invasion within two hours.

This was confirmed by an FBI investigator, James Lyons.

And it also happens to compliment what UNAMIR official Col. Luc Marchal told the ICTR in his testimony to the court: “From my experience, my conclusion is that the RPF had one goal, seizing power by force and keeping it to themselves.” Marchal also stated that, “Not once, never have I sensed the desire to make concessions, to smooth rough edges, to reach a consensus.” He told the court that, “It was almost a daily struggle, and I received remarks because of the violations of the agreement,” and that, “All these elements led me to the conclusion that their goal was certainly not to concretize the peace process.”

As well as former ICTR prosecutor Carla del Ponte, who insisted on prosecuting Kagame and RPF officials for the assassination and their war crimes.

And I have yet to see Monbiot deal with any of this, or the Davenport-Stam work that shows the majority of deaths were Hutu. This is something Monbiot often refers to. But rather than address Christian Davenport’s study “Rwandan Political Violence in Space and Time,” which is the basis of Herman’s and Peterson’s comment, he just shoots the messengers. In their piece “What Really Happened in Rwanda?” Davenport and Stam write that,

According to the census, there were approximately 600,000 Tutsi in the country in 1991; according to the survival organization Ibuka, about 300,000 survived the 1994 slaughter. This suggested that out of the 800,000 to 1 million believed to have been killed then, more than half were Hutu. The finding was significant; it suggested that the majority of the victims of 1994 were of the same ethnicity as the government in power.

They also noted that,

Perhaps the most shocking result of our combination of information on troop locations involved the invasion itself: The killings in the zone controlled by the FAR seemed to escalate as the RPF moved into the country and acquired more territory. When the RPF advanced, large-scale killings escalated. When the RPF stopped, large-scale killings largely decreased. The data revealed in our maps was consistent with FAR claims that it would have stopped much of the killing if the RPF had simply called a halt to its invasion. This conclusion runs counter to the Kagame administration’s claims that the RPF continued its invasion to bring a halt to the killings.

In the summer of 1994, the RPF killings were so widespread and devastating that UN peacekeepers were blocking refugees from returning, citing the RPF killings and their fear for their safety.

Going back to the Gersony report, we know that the RPF carried out “large-scale indiscriminate killings of men, women, children, including the sick and the elderly,” and they did so with tactics like,

Local residents, including entire families, were called to community meetings, invited to receive information about “peace,” “security,” or “food distribution” issues. Once a crowd had assembled, it was assaulted through sudden sustained gunfire; or locked in buildings into which hand-grenades were thrown; systematically killed with manual instruments; or killed in large numbers other means.

What readers have got to understand is that the RPF were an official arm of the Ugandan military, and consisted largely of Rwandan exiles that were a part of the National Resistance Army, which was led by now Ugandan Dictator Yoweri Museveni. The NRA was an armed militia whose goal was to seize power. After they successfully did so in Uganda in the mid-1980s, the RPF was created to carry out the same plan in Rwanda. And on October 1, 1990 the RPF invaded Rwanda from Uganda. And for nearly four years the RPF conducted a plan to destabilize and overthrow the government, which came to a crescendo on April 6, 1994 when the RPF assassinated President Habyarimana, and carried out massive military offensive.

And this pattern, which occurred in Uganda, and repeated in Rwanda, was again carried out in Democratic Republic of Congo when Uganda and Rwanda invaded, overthrew the government and began butchering people. According to the UN Mapping report, which describes “The systematic attacks, in particular killings and massacres perpetrated against members of the Hutu ethnic group”:

These attacks resulted in a very large number of victims, probably tens of thousands of members of the Hutu ethnic group, all nationalities combined. In the vast majority of cases reported, it was not a question of people killed unintentionally in the course of combat, but people targeted primarily by AFDL/APR/FAB forces and executed in their hundreds, often with edged weapons. The majority of the victims were children, women, elderly people and the sick, who posed no threat to the attacking forces. Numerous serious attacks on the physical or pyschological integrity of members of the group were also committed, with a very high number of Hutus shot, raped, burnt or beaten. Very large numbers of victims were forced to flee and travel long distances to escape their pursuers, who were trying to kill them. The hunt lasted for months, resulting in the deaths of an unknown number of people subjected to cruel, inhuman and degrading living conditions, without access to food or medication. On several occasions, the humanitarian aid intended for them was deliberately blocked …

Now, considering all of the above, and how the ICTR has yet to uncover a plan to commit genocide in Rwanda, or how not one RPF official has been prosecuted for well-documented crimes (del Ponte was actually fired for her insistence in prosecuting the RPF) there is a considerable basis for Herman and Peterson to challenge the official narrative on the genocide that occurred in Rwanda.

And nearly all of the above is mentioned in The Politics of Genocide, which, again, leads me to conclude that either George Monbiot didn’t read the material, or he is being intentionally dishonest in his smear campaign, which now not only includes Herman and Peterson, but Noam Chomsky as well. var _gaq = _gaq || []; _gaq.push([‘_setAccount’, ‘UA-32113110-1’]); _gaq.push([‘_trackPageview’]); (function() { var ga = document.createElement(‘script’); ga.type = ‘text/javascript’; ga.async = true; ga.src = (‘https:’ == document.location.protocol ? ‘https://ssl’ : ‘http://www’) + ‘.google-analytics.com/ga.js’; var s = document.getElementsByTagName(‘script’)[0]; s.parentNode.insertBefore(ga, s); })();


What the NYT Doesn’t Say About the Lockerbie Bombing

Pan Am Flight 103, bound for New York, exploded over Lockerbie, Scotland, in December 1988.  A total of 270 people were killed, including 189 Americans. Credit: Martin Cleaver/Associated Press

Robert McFadden’s article “Megrahi, Convicted in 1988 Lockerbie Bombing, Dies at 60” appears in today’s New York Times print edition and reports on the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 in which two-hundred and seventy people were killed in the terrorist attack. And while McFadden offers a lot of information on the incident and the controversial case of the suspected bomber, Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi, the article stops short of an alternative explanation.

McFadden writes that Al-Megrahi was “the only person convicted in the 1988 bombing of an American jetliner over Lockerbie, Scotland.” This much is true.

It is also true that al-Megrahi “insisted that he was not guilty,” as well as that he was a “former Libyan intelligence officer.”

And it is true that “after doctors said he was likely to die within three months, he was freed in 2009 under a Scottish law providing for compassionate release of prisoners with terminal illnesses.”

And of course it is true that,

Cheering crowds greeted his return to Libya, escorted by Colonel Qaddafi’s son Saif al-Islam in a grim propaganda coup. His release infuriated many families of the bombing victims, touched off angry protests in Britain and the United States and was condemned by President Obama and other Western leaders.

But compare the incident with what happened five months before the Lockerbie bombing when the U.S.S. Vincennes—which was patrolling the area in service to Iraq’s Saddam Hussein in his war of aggression with Iran—shot Iranian Air Flight 655 out of the sky, killing all of its 290 civilian passengers.

The captain of the U.S.S. Vincennes, a Mr. Will Rogers, was not only greeted by cheering crowds following his indisputable act of terrorism (as opposed to the dispute surrounding al-Megrahi), but was rewarded for it. That is, according to the New York Times article in late 1988: “Crew of Cruiser That Downed Iranian Airliner Gets a Warm Homecoming.”

Not only is the differential treatment revealing, but the incident itself will have some bearing on the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103.  

Which brings us to when things begin to unravel in the case against al-Megrahi.

The enigmatic Mr. Megrahi had been the central figure of the case for decades, reviled as a terrorist but defended by many Libyans, and even some world leaders, as a victim of injustice whose trial, 12 years after the bombing, had been riddled with political overtones, memory gaps and flawed evidence.

Following years of Libya refusing to turn-over al-Megrahi, he finally agrees to turn himself over for a trial, which lasted just under 90 days. On the trial McFadden writes that, “None of the witnesses connected the suspects directly to the bomb.”

And even though McFadden reports that “Tony Gauci, the Maltese shopkeeper who sold the clothing that forensic experts had linked to the bomb, identified Mr. Megrahi as the buyer,” it is noted that “Mr. Gauci seemed doubtful and had picked others in photo displays,” and that,

It emerged that Mr. Gauci had repeatedly failed to identify Mr. Megrahi before the trial and had selected him only after seeing his photograph in a magazine and being shown the same photo in court. The date of the clothing sale was also in doubt.

McFadden then goes on to briefly explore how other witnesses were found to be “untruthful and unreliable,” and that one witness “admitted that he had lied at the trial” and that “the fragment [of a piece of evidence] he identified was never tested for residue of explosives, although it was the only evidence of possible Libyan involvement.”

The problems of the trial are compounded when McFadden reports how “Hans Köchler, a United Nations observer, called the trial ‘a spectacular miscarriage of justice,’ words echoed by Mr. [Nelson] Mandela.”

It is true that, as McFadden writes, “Critics charged that Mr. Megrahi’s release had been a part of Libyan oil and gas deals with Britain.” But what McFadden doesn’t report on is the pecuilar arrangement surrounding the release. Part of the deal was that al-Megrahi had to promise to drop an ongoing appeal. This is significant because in June of 2007 the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission (SCCRC) noted a hand-full of incidences in the trial that validated Köchler’s declaration of a “miscarriage of justice.”

The most McFadden gives to this is the brief comment was that al-Megrahi “dropped a second [appeal] to clear his repatriation.” No explanation or details provided.

In other words, more than 1,500 words is dedicated to the trial and conviction of a man where the evidence of his guilt is non-existent, and the only trial that succeeded in finding him guilty was a declared “miscarriage of justice.”

Worse, the victim of this injustice had to promise to drop his appeal—which would prove embarassing to those who “reviled” him—just to be able to go home and die in peace, after struggling with terminal cancer.

By ignoring the U.S. bombing of an Iranian air liner, the more probable alternative explanation for who was behind the Lockerbie bombing is also ignored.

The alternative has some merit. Prior to the focus being put on al-Megrahi the U.S. government had built up their case against the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine General Command (PFLP-GC) leader, Ahmad Jabril. A U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency memo from 1989 says the PFLP-GC were contracted by Iranian authorities for $1 million to carry out the bombing.

And while McFadden reports that, “The court’s inference that the bomb had been transferred from the Frankfurt feeder flight was also cast into doubt when a Heathrow security guard revealed that Pan Am’s baggage area had been broken into 17 hours before the bombing, a circumstance never explored,” McFadden doesn’t explore the incident further, or provide relevant context.

It was a German investigation that found that the PFLP-GC were familiar with the components of the Lockerbie bombing, as they had used them before, and that the PFLP-GC had cased out the Frankfurt airport.

All signs pointed to Iran as the culprit for revenge for the Flight 655 bombing, but as the U.S. entered in slightly improved relationships with both Syria and Iran in 1990, the focus mysteriously changed to what McFadden calls the “enigmatic Mr. Megrahi” whom “little is known about.”

It is curious how McFadden and the New York Times can ignore the U.S. bombing of Flight 655 and the considerable evidence against Iran. Because in February 1989, in the aritlce “Palestinian Group and Iran Tied to Pan Am Bomb,” the Times noted that, “Evidence in the investigation of who planted the bomb that destroyed a Pan Am jumbo jet over Scotland in December increasingly points to a Palestinian terrorist group working in concert with hard-line elements within the Iranian Government, United States officials say.” A U.S. official is even quoted as saying that, ”There is no question that there is some organizational connection between the P.F.L.P. – G.C. and factions of the Iranian Government.”

When the U.S. went to war with Saddam in early 1991, they clearly wanted the support, or at leat the non-intereference of Syria and Iran. In a September 1990 article by Thomas Friedman, “CONFRONTATION IN THE GULF; Assad Assures Baker of Support in Gulf,” we are told that former Secretary of State James Baker met with Syrian President Hafez al-Assad, and that “their meeting was the first between a senior American official and the Syrian President since the December 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103, which United States intelligence agencies widely believe was carried out by a Syrian-sponsored Palestinian organization”—the PFLP-GC.

Following this there was no more talk about the PFLP-GC, and Iran. The “evidence” that was “increasingly” pointing in one direction, and which had officials saying “there is no question” that it points this way, all of a sudden is disposed down the memory hole. Now it is Libya and al-Megrahi, and the New York Times didn’t miss a beat.

This is all a testament to the service provided by the propaganda system, which the NYT is a part of. It speaks volumes about the quality and integrity of the “paper of record” when it’s focus depends more on who Uncle Sam is eyeing as the perpetrator—which is clearly centered around politics—and less the available facts. We have seen this switch in countless other examples. At one time Saddam Hussein was a good guy. At one time it was Iran who was accused of the chemical warfare attack in Halabja, Iraq. And just as the U.S. government will change its tune to reflect the political environment of the time, the New York Times will follow suit. This latest article attests to that.

Why is the NYT Silent on the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Disaster Fallout?

NOAA has run OSCURS (Ocean Surface Current Simulator), a numeric model for ocean surface currents, to predict the movement of marine debris generated by the Japan tsunami over five years. The results are shown here. Year 1 = red; Year 2 = orange; Year 3 = yellow; Year 4 = light blue; Year 5 = violet. The OCSURS model is used to measure the movement of surface currents over time, as well as the movement of what is in or on the water. Map courtesy of J. Churnside (NOAA OAR) and created through Google.

The efficacy of the propaganda system is simply amazing, and at the same time, terrifying.

A year ago last March it wasn’t just Japan that was exposed to the nightmare of modern civilization, but the whole world. When Mother Nature exposed the dangers of nuclear energy by sending an earthquake and tsunami to damage the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, the fallout would go beyond Japan.

But over at the New York Times you would hardly know things are as bad as they are.

Browsing through articles from the last 30 days there were eleven on the Japanese nuclear power plant. And while the article “Japan to Nationalize Fukushima Utility” which was published on May 9 notes that, “The Fukushima Daiichi plant was heavily damaged by a powerful earthquake and tsunami in March 2011, which eventually led to multiple meltdowns at the site and a huge radiation leak that forced tens of thousands from their homes,” there is nothing else mentioned on the fallout. As if the worst of the incident was evacuated homes, and the compensation of the displaced.

Other than that there is no more mention of the effects of the nuclear disaster for the thirty-day period.

What there is mention of is how there is a large public response to the central governments attempts to restart some of the plants. But this comes across as contemptous for grassroots democracy.

In “Last Reactor of 50 in Japan Is Shut Down” published on May 5, the journalist Martin Fackler tells us that “last year’s nuclear disaster forced the nation to at least temporarily do without atomic power for the first time in 42 years.” Fackler goes on to report that,

Desperate to avert possible power shortages this summer, the government has tried to convince the public to allow some of the reactors to be restarted. It has conducted simulated stress tests to show whether reactors can withstand the sort of immense earthquake and tsunami that knocked out the Fukushima Daiichi plant.

The problem is that “the public has not accepted the tests, which were conducted largely behind closed doors,” and that, “About 300 protesters gathered Saturday in front of the Trade Ministry to celebrate the temporary shutdown of the nation’s nuclear program, and to call for a permanent end.”
Two days prior to the above article Fackler wrote a more lengthy article, “Japan’s Leaders, Pressed by Public, Fret as Nuclear Shutdown Nears,” on the struggle between the central government and local leaders backed by the public:

Japan’s leaders have made increasingly desperate attempts in recent months to avoid just such a scenario, trying to restart plants shut for routine maintenance and kept that way while they tried to convince a skittish public that the reactors were safe in the wake of last year’s nuclear catastrophe. But the government has run up against a crippling public distrust that recently found a powerful voice in local leaders who are orchestrating a rare challenge to Tokyo’s centralized power.

In discussing the efforts of a young mayor battling the central government to keep the plants closed, Fackler assures his audience that, “There is no guarantee that Mr. Hashimoto’s revolt will last past the summer, when the notion of life without nuclear power will become more real in a nation that relied on reactors to fuel its powerful postwar economy.”

Again the crisis at the Times is the energy crisis, not the environmental and health crisis that our high levels of energy consumption create.

And it’s not just Fackler’s pieces. In a Bloomberg News article published by the New York Times (“Japan’s Idling of Nuclear Plants Is Complete“) we read that,

Japan has had at least some electricity from nuclear plants since May 1970. And before last March, 50 nuclear facilities provided 30 percent of its electricity.

Now, however, the utilities powering the world’s third-biggest economy, behind China and the United States, have been forced to turn to coal, oil and gas-fired plants to keep factories, offices and households supplied with electricity.

Buying and importing those fuels is driving up costs and may lead to higher electricity bills and a further drag on an economy that has contracted in three of the past four years.

Quite simply, these articles read like propaganda put out by the nuclear industry. Because, again, the focus is on hyping concerns of an energy crisis, not our levels of consumption, or the risks nuclear energy poses to our health and the environment.

And beyond the last thirty days, that trend becomes more apparent when you do a simple search on the Times search engine. Look up “Fukushima nuclear” and you get 1,380 articles. Add the word “fallout” and it’s reduced to 143 articles.

But if you look elsewhere you find very serious concerns of fallout.

A BBC article in late March 2012 (“Probe finds high radiation in damaged Fukushima reactor“) reports that, “The operator of Japan’s crippled Fukushima nuclear plant has said damage to one of the reactors is much worse than previously thought,” while also saying, “Radiation was up to 10 times the fatal dose, the highest yet recorded at the plant.”

Common Dreams reported yesterday that “Radioactive cesium measured in samples of silt taken from Tokyo Bay has increased to 1.5-13 times the amount detected in similar samples last August, according to a survey conducted by Kinki University.”

Not even a month after the disaster Forbes magazine reported that, “Radiation from Japan has been detected in drinking water in 13 more American cities, and cesium-137 has been found in American milk—in Montpelier, Vermont—for the first time since the Japan nuclear disaster began.”

A week ago Digital Journal informed its readers in an op-ed piece that,

The Fukushima facility has many fuel rods still filled with unspent fuel. If the fuel is radioactive MOX, there would be enough radiation in just one rod to kill millions of people. Worst case scenario involves the integrity and safety of the rods, which are made of low quality materials accompanied with poor maintenance. This situation means that any major earthquake could cause massive damage to the rods. Additionally, if all of the rods rupture simultaneously, this cataclysmic disaster could mean the annihilation of many life forms on planet Earth.

And in an article published in the International Journal of Health Services last December, a study found that,

Deaths rose 4.46 percent from 2010 to 2011 in the 14 weeks after the arrival of Japanese fallout, compared with a 2.34 percent increase in the prior 14 weeks. The number of infant deaths after Fukushima rose 1.80 percent, compared with a previous 8.37 percent decrease. Projecting these figures for the entire United States yields 13,983 total deaths and 822 infant deaths in excess of the expected.

The authors of the study then go on to say that, “This result suggested that radiation from Japan may have harmed Americans, thus meriting more research.”

Readers of the New York Times should be very concerned that they are getting a distorted picture of the Fukushima nuclear disaster at the “paper of record.” We should be looking into why it is that the energy concern is “all the news fit to print,” and not the environmental and health risks. Considering the powerful influence of lobbies with the media, the prospects of the nuclear energy industry influencing articles, and thus manipulating the opinions of viewers, is a serious concern. Rather than focusing on the concern of energy bills, we need a more serious and sustained focus on our consumption levels, their link to the global capitalist system, and more details on the health and environmental risks of not just nuclear energy, but a wide array of other issues relevant to our production and consumption trends. Unfortunately, the Times has come nowhere close to delivering this level of quality journalism.

NYT on Kissinger-TSA Incident: ‘TSA screeners have yet to catch a terrorist’

Former Secretary of State, and notorious war criminal, Henry Kissinger

Yesterday it was widely reported in the news that former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger was given a full pat down by Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents who didn’t know who the famous statesman was. Even the New York Times briefly covered it in a 129-word blog by one of their editors, Juliet Lapidos.

Lapidos writes that, “TSA screeners have yet to catch a terrorist.”

This is a half-truth since apparently TSA let Henry Kissinger board the plane. Had the TSA agents detained Kissinger they would’ve arrested one of the most criminal terrorists in modern history; a man who once told a Congressional committee about the high crimes and misdemeanors he was intimately a part of: “Covert action should not be confused with missionary work.”

The National Security Archive website over at George Washington University is filled with declassified examples. Nearly a dozen of them deal specifically with Kissinger.

There were plannings on terrorizing Chileans, and bringing Hell to the South American country if the citizens were to vote the wrong way. The people of Chile did vote the wrong way (at least by Nixon’s standards), and on September 11, 1973, the U.S. government did unleash terror on the population, which lasted for decades in what Chileans call “the first 9-11”.

Secretary Kissinger is quoted as telling Argentine generals that, “If there are things that have to be done, you should do them quickly.” There were, and they did. The results were deadly. The generals had quality teachers: Nazi’s who escaped Europe via the ratlines. And like their predecessors, the Argentine military rounded up tens of thousands of leftists and dissidents and summarily killed them.

Another publication has Kissinger quoted as telling the generals: “The quicker you succeed the better.”

In one of the biggest genocides in the last half of the 20the century—where roughly a quarter of the population was killed—we find it was President Ford and Secretary of State Henry Kissinger who gave the “green light” for Indonesia to invade and occupy East Timor for a quarter century. Writing in his retrospective on the tragic affair, Noam Chomsky, noted that,

There was no need to threaten bombing or even sanctions. It would have sufficed for the US and its allies to withdraw their active participation, and inform their close associates in the Indonesian military command that the atrocities must be terminated and the territory granted the right of self-determination . . .

Chomsky was correct. A few years after noting the significance of U.S. support there was a truth commission, with documents supplied by The National Security Archive. The report concluded that U.S. “political and military support were fundamental to the Indonesian invasion and occupation” of East Timor.

Following the quick defeat of Egypt, Syria and Jordan in the Six-Day War in the summer of 1967, Israel used their military success to continue rejecting peace offers. And in 1971 when Egypt offered Israel peace, the latter rejected. It was this refusal to make peace that paved the way to the Yom Kippur War in 1973, which if it were not for last minute U.S. support, Israel would likely have been defeated. And it should come as no surprise that it was Henry Kissinger himself who gave the “green light” for Israel “to breach a cease-fire agreement arranged with the Soviet Union,” and carry out the major military offensive.

In probably the most incriminating piece of evidence, there is the occurrence where Kissinger followed President Nixon’s order to carry out a “massive bombing campaign” in Cambodia, which the President ordered the attack to target “anything that flys [or] anything that moves.” Just as the American war in Afghanistan is spilling over into neighboring Pakistan, the American war in Vietnam spread to Cambodia and Laos. In Cambodia, the U.S. took sides in a civil war, killing hundreds of thousands of people.

As for the last comment on Cambodia, the New York Times is well aware of it since they quoted it in a piece they published just shy of eight years ago: “Kissinger Tapes Describe Crises, War and Stark Photos of Abuse.”

Few statesmen in the world have this kind of easily accessible documentation showcasing their terror, aggression and criminality. Had this kind of evidence existed for Saddam Hussein, Slobodan Milošević, or various Rwandan government and military officials—all subjected to victor’s justice—the trials would’ve been open and shut.

Rather than note the criminal background of Henry Kissinger, and how he has never been brought to justice, Lapidos illustrates the quality and integrity of a staff editor for one of the largest and most prestigious news sources when she takes a jab at the TSA for “patting down octogenarians.”

Meme: al Nakba

Categories: Uncategorized

Meme: Afghan Knock-Knock Joke

Categories: Uncategorized

Meme: Political Joke

Categories: Uncategorized