Thursday May 23, 2013
When War is Promoted as a Remedy for Terror: Reflections on the Tenth Anniversary Of 9/11[i]Dr. Anthony Hall for Salem-News.com
The report from America’s Commander-In-Chief that bin Laden had been executed by US Navy Seals added a new layer of deception to an extravagant complex of misrepresentations, distortions and subterfuge.
(LETHBRIDGE, Alberta) - For presentation on 9/11/11 at the Herbst Theatre, San Francisco War Memorial Veterans Building as part of the proceedings, 9/11, Reclaiming the Truth, Reclaiming Our Future
Obama Kills Geronimo to Claim Political Bounty
In early May President Barack Obama announced his administration’s most dramatic commemoration of this, the tenth-anniversary year of the 9/11 debacle. He boasted to the world that his government had murdered in Pakistan Osama bin Laden, who the US president described as “al-Qaeda’s leader and symbol.” “The death of bin Laden,” Obama declared, “marks the most significant achievement to date in our nation’s effort to defeat al-Qaeda.”[ii]
In this military operation “Geronimo” was the code name used to identify bin Laden or his impersonator. The skeletal remains of Geronimo’s head form part a key part of the Bush clan’s family lore with its deep intergenerational connection to Yale University’s Skull and Bones Society. Skull and Bones is not a myth, but its secret rituals are legendary. As is well documented, Yale’s Skull and Bones Society has been an important seeding nursery for the national security state, but especially the CIA. Like many old fortunes in New England and New York, the money to start Skull and Bones came primarily from the smuggling of East India Company opium into China.
The alleged grave robber of Geronimo’s skull, Prescott Bush, is in the unique position of siring two presidential offspring, namely his son, George Herbert Walker Bush, and his grandson, George Walker Bush. It was Bush Jr. who put a price on bin Laden’s head after 9/11. It was Obama who came ten years later to claim the political bounty?[iii]
This return of Geronimo, the celebrated Apache guerilla fighter, to the role of legend in the 9/11 myth, where fact and fiction merge, serves as a poignant reminder of the foundational importance of the US Indian Wars in orienting imperial America to its global preoccupation with eliminating all Aboriginal impediments to capital’s conquest. Whether in Guatemala, Congo, Vietnam, Iraq, Apacheria, or the Black Hills of the Sioux Nation, indigenous political economies that do not conform to the interests and requirements of the world’s largest transnational corporations have repeatedly been assaulted with both high-tech weaponry and psychological warfare.
The plight of those that Franz Fanon identified as the wretched of the earth is widening. The blight of dispossessed natives is moving into the heartland of once-prosperous communities in North America, Europe, and Japan. The same script is being repeated again and again. The middle class wanes while swelling legions of unemployed are squeezed by the banks to abandon their remaining property, often family homes, as payment for debt.
The ascent of vulture capitalism over the managed capitalism of the New Deal began with a vengeance during the presidency of Ronald Reagan. More deeply than that, vulture capitalism flows from the monopoly power granted banks to create new money out of thin air at the same time as they leverage their loans by creating mushrooming debt. The huge financial leverage derived from this lucrative monopoly over the creation of money and debt is epitomized by the public authority invested in the private proprietors of the US Federal Reserve.
The Lies and Crimes of 9/11
The report from America’s Commander-In-Chief that bin Laden had been executed by US Navy Seals added a new layer of deception to an extravagant complex of misrepresentations, distortions and subterfuge. The failure of officialdom to investigate credibly the crimes of September 11, 2001, together with the extraordinary extent and tenacity of the media cover-up, has, for many of us, made 9/11 synonymous with the view that fraud, complicity and worse—much worse-- runs rampant at the highest levels of power. For a huge and rapidly growing global constituency the continuing 9/11 cover-up has become a striking symbol of the culture of impunity, one that protects those directing the most terrible crimes against humanity, the most terrible crimes against all life on earth.
As was obvious to millions both inside and outside our movement aimed at investigating and exposing the lies and crimes of 9/11, too many question marks hung over Obama’s claim to have eliminated Osama, or whoever it was that had been targeted for extrajudicial assassination. Why, for instance, did US forces decide to eliminate all proof of their soldier’s claimed kill by supposedly burying America’s most hyped uber-terrorist at sea before releasing news of his supposed execution?
Obama’s speech introduced yet another twist into the convoluted mess of tall tales forming the basis of the US government’s 9/11 legend. The main weaves of this religious myth were spun by the former US president in Washington D.C. well before the asbestos-laden dust from the three pulverized World Trade Centre buildings in New York had fully settled. In a sermon from the pulpit of a Washington Church delivered only three days after the debacle, George W. Bush declared war on al-Qaeda.“ Our responsibility to history is already clear,” Bush preached. The US Armed Forces would “answer these attacks and rid the world of evil.”[iv]
In the echo chambers of media manipulation, the intense religious fervor booming through the 9/11 fable gave the drumbeats of war unusual ferocity. Within days and weeks of September 11, 2001 an elaborate complex of pre-prepared initiatives was moved from the wings to the central stage of public life. This process took place not only in the USA but in many countries throughout the world. Suddenly any resistance to the rise of the global police state together with the accelerated build up and deployment of the world’s preeminent war machine could be interpreted as criminal complicity. “Either you are with us or you are with the terrorists,” decreed George Bush revising a mantra brought forward from the rabid anti-communism of the Cold War.[v]
In the flash of a few news cycles all obstacles were cleared away to new surges of public funds into the permanent war economy—into the military Keynesianism that has been at the heart of the US political economy ever since the United States finally entered the Second World War in 1941. With the production of a new global enemy the foundering military-industrial complex was given a new lease in its commercial life, a parasitical life based ultimately on the merchandizing of death.
The bloated and outmoded Cold-War apparatus, whose very purpose became unclear after the Soviet Union’s demise, was saved from obsolescence. The threat of global peace had been averted. The bipartisan war party returned to the roots of a centuries-long process of shaping the American nation and expanding the American empire in the name of defeating savage infidels cast as enemies of Judeo-Christian civilization.
With the advent of 9/11, old Cold Warriors like Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld were restored to high authority. They, along with many of their fellow PNAC lobbyists, were handed refurbished levers of neocolonial empire.[vi] After 9/11 the Bush War Cabinet dispensed greatly enlarged pools of federal patronage in overseeing what I refer to in Earth into Property as “the privatized terror economy.” After 9/11 Benjamin Netanyahu saw his plans go into action. Netanyahu is the current Prime Minister of Israel who began in the late 1970s to envisage, articulate, and promote what he described as an international war on terrorism. His wish came true. After 9/11 Israel’s enemies were transformed into the enemies of the so-called “West.” [vii]
The war machine’s spin doctors and media hucksters went into action to prepare public opinion for an invasion of Afghanistan and then Iraq. The incendiary rhetoric sponsored by war profiteers fanned the flames of Islamophobia so citizens would accept the onslaught of mass slaughter and illegal torture to come. A whole empire of communications sprung up to wage the psychological blitzkrieg of the 9/11 Wars. This style of police-state journalism-- shock and awe journalism-- has become a daily staple, the pablum of war propaganda regularly fed on TV to children and their infantilized parents.
This psychological recipe for war was brought to its most sick extremes in Rupert Murdoch’s media network. The pattern of police-state deception, however, goes far beyond Fox and News of the World. The war machine’s drive for full spectrum dominance cuts across the whole range of our most important instruments of mass communications. It includes many venues of alternative media where the controlled opposition to the quest for 9/11 truth has been sometimes very aggressive, very demeaning.
From The BBC, to the New York Times, to Charlie Rose, to Z, to the ridiculous Michael Shermer’s pseudo-skeptical column in the once-estimable Scientific American—indeed, to the daily news and cultural coverage disseminated by my own country’s Crown-owned Canadian Broadcasting Corporation—this war’s blood sacrifice of truth has become horrific.
Like drone strikes or showers of white phosphorous falling from the sky or shooting projectiles packed with depleted uranium, media missiles have been directed most viciously at poisoning Western minds against the Muslim masses especially in the Middle East and Eurasia. With the possible exception of a few individuals, the targeted populations in the Eurasian crossroads of the world had nothing to do with the demolition of the three skyscrapers in New York or the piercing of a small hole in the side of a huge edifice that should have been imperial Washington’s most heavily protected structure.
The captive presidency of the enslaved Barack Obama continued the rule of the axis of violence and fraud linking the Pentagon to Wall Street to Madison Avenue. The continuing reign of this axis of lies, obfuscation and oppression has become increasingly dependent on the emotional force of the 9/11 legend in the mythological matrix of popular culture, popular imagination. Consolidating the drama of the theocrat president who declared war from the pulpit, the fable of 9/11 has been invested with the authority of a national religion, one that props up an increasingly anachronistic and corrupt regime of national security.
The American cult of national security delivers the opposite of what it promises. By putting many of the world’s most ruthless criminals above the law—and George Bush is a perfect example-- the cult of national security denies citizens the protections of domestic security, community security, international security, health security, economic security, social security, and ecological security.
The American cult of national security subordinates the rule of law to the rule of force. From the abundant openings to exploit the gathering of “intelligence” for insider trading on stock markets, to the funding of covert operations regularly financed with drug money, to the profits derived from nuclear proliferation, the corruption bred of the US president’s license to steal is the primary hallmark of the American cult of national security.
At West Point on December 1, 2009, President Obama pledged allegiance to all the Bushite fables embedded in the national religion of 9/11. “On September 11, 2001,” declared President Obama, “19 men hijacked four airplanes and used them to murder nearly 3,000 people. They struck at our military and economic nerve centers. They took the lives of innocent men, women, and children without regard to their faith or race or station… As we know these men belonged to al-Qaeda…. Al-Qaeda’s base was in Afghanistan, where they were harbored by the Taliban—a ruthless, repressive and radical movement that seized control of that country after it was ravaged by years of Soviet occupation and civil war, and after the attention of America and our friends had turned elsewhere. Just days after 9/11 Congress authorized the use of force against al-Qaeda and those that harbor them—an authorization that continues until this day.” [viii]
9/11 in Historical Context
In Earth into Property I set 9/11 and the 9/11 Wars in the context of wave after wave of empire building that began in 1492. With his initial trans-Atlantic voyage Christopher Columbus began the modern era of imperial globalization. In the second half of the eighteenth century a secessionist movement within Anglo-America succeeded in investing a small group of mostly White, exclusively male and Protestant colonists with citizenship in a new instrument of settler sovereignty.
The plan of the founders of the nascent United States was to take control of the voluntary immigration from Europe and the involuntary migration from Africa flowing through the trans-Atlantic slave trade. This East-West movement was to extend to the transcontinental transformation of much of North America from a territory of diverse Aboriginal nationalities into a federal republic. The founders of the future superpower thus seized important geopolitical turf on the moving frontiers of an old imperial mission that continues to this day. They began to move towards the forefront of an expansionary dynamic that began with the christening of America as a New World polity whose Manifest Destiny depended on the genocidal elimination of the Old World civilizations of the Indigenous peoples.
This trajectory saw a small number of English colonies on the western shores of the Atlantic Ocean expand and replicate to become the most heavily armed military-industrial entity the world has ever seen. Not only were countless Indigenous peoples conquered, absorbed, eliminated, corralled and subjugated in the process. The transformation of Anglo-America into the US superpower included the ingestion of New Netherlands and New France, the purchase without Aboriginal consent of Louisiana and Alaska, as well as the acquistion through force of arms of large parts of the Mestizo jurisdictions of Mexico and Canada.
Frederick Jackson Turner famously reflected in 1893 on the significance of this moving frontier, an expression of what he characterized as the ascent of “civilization over savagery.” He presented his frontier thesis at the World’s Columbian’s Exposition to commemorate in Chicago the 400th anniversary of America’s so-called discovery. Predicting the continuing westward push of US Armed Forces into the Pacific region, Turner anticipated the US colonization of Hawaii and the Philippines concurrently with the consolidation of the informal branches of the US empire in Canada, Cuba and throughout so-called Latin America.
In the twentieth century two major civil wars within Europe were globalized along with the internationalization of US power. The culminating act of the two world wars put Japan in 1945 under two mushroom clouds from US atomic weapons. The huge implications for all humanity of these atomic blasts is being eerily renewed in the uncontrolled volcano of spewing radioactivity still emanating from the maimed nuclear power plant at Fukushima.[ix]
As the initial waves of radioactive fallout from the US obliteration of Hiroshima and Nagasaki wove its lethal threads into the fragile web of life, Europe lay bankrupted and physically ruined. The outcome of the Second World War was basically decided before the obliteration of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in a repeat of the Napoleonic wars, in a fight to the death between Nazis forces and Soviet soldiers.
The civil wars of Europe started with religious conflicts that set patterns for the iconography of infidel and martyr haunting the religious psychology of the 9/11 Wars. Instead of pitting Protestants against Roman Catholics, however, the core meme of the Global War on Terror has been to extract the heritage of Islam from the West’s heritage; to encourage, reward or outright fake jihadist violence so as to manufacture the meme of Muslims as religious enemies of Judeo-Christian civilization, of Anglo-America plus Israel.
In the decades following the Second World War the rhetoric of self-determination and decolonization was very much in the air, but especially at the United Nations. The UN originally grew out of a convergence of agendas marrying the Atlantic Charter’s idealism to bankers’ conspiracies aimed at monitoring and guiding the outcomes that would arise from the formal withdrawal of the European powers from their imperial estates. US President Franklin D. Roosevelt, the UN’s initial and most committed patron, first conceived of the organization as a medium to internationalize the New Deal’s most affirmative features.
As the founders of the Non-Aligned Movement observed at the historic conference at Bandung Indonesia in 1955, the promise of decolonization was soon preempted by the neocolonial imperatives of Cold-War bipolarism. The United States outdid the builders of Soviet empire in moving, often through proxies, propaganda, and the force of arms, into the vacuum of power left by the withdrawal from their colonies of European governments.
The continuity of transformation of Great Britain’s formal empire into the informal empire of the United States was especially smooth, at least on the surface. Indeed, while the unity of Anglo-America was formally severed with the founding of the United States in the late eighteenth century, the effective unity of this English-speaking polity—this heartland of Anglobalization-- has been demonstrated again and again.
The coherence of Anglo-America was evident, for instance, in the collaboration between Roosevelt and Churchill during the Second World War. It was evident in the convergence of the populist ideologies and military adventurism that made Reagan and Thatcher close partners in the final phase of the so-called Cold War. Similarly Bush and Blair together took control of the 9/11 fraud both to advance the imperial designs of the Israeli right while giving cover to the heightened militarization of resource grabs from Indigenous peoples in the most strategic zones of Eurasia. In Eurasia, but especially the Caspian Basin, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran, the oil-hungry designs of imperial Russia, China, the EU and Anglo-America are fast converging.
The evidence gathered over the last ten by scores of scholars and practitioners, but especially by Professor David Ray Griffin, has removed any reasonable doubt that some elements of the Bush-Blair regime are, along with deep-state operatives of Israel, deeply implicated in the lies and crimes of 9/11. In his tenth 9/11 book, which poses the question of what happens When State Crimes Against Democracy Succeed, Professor Griffin sums up the air-tight case he has developed from his exhaustive engagement with the evidence of official involvement in one of history’s most consequential crimes.[x]
With eloquence and erudition Professor Griffin’s scholarly work on 9/11 speaks for many more people than have actually read his carefully documented and dispassionately reasoned publications. One way or another, many millions of global citizens have taken the time to look beyond the 9/11 fable; to explore one or more aspects of the empirically-verifiable evidence concerning what actually happened on 9/11. The well-known mantra of this cultural constituency of truth seekers, a new kind of agglomeration of activism in civil society, is that “9/11 was an inside job.” Its a catchy slogan but also problematic in that the question is begged-- inside of what?
In spite of the broadly-based citizens’ movement that has coalesced around the goal of breaking through the blockade of officially-sanctioned lies, ten years have gone by without a credible process in government or in any high-profile media to get to the bottom of the contested interpretations of what really happened on 9/11. This failure has contributed significantly to a huge loss of public confidence in the integrity of many of our most important institutions.
The thick obstacles consistently and unrelentingly put in the way of the citizens’ quest for even a glimmer of truth from officialdom on 9/11 makes many of our supposed leaders in government, in the academy, and in the press complicit in a collective crime of omission. The solidarity displayed in the cover-up is remarkably strict. Let the self-serving alibi of ignorance or disinterest in the lies and crimes of 9/11 be seen for the complicity it announces. This complicity is especially marked when it comes to the denialism of those holding positions of high public trust such as law enforcement officers, teachers, journalists, elected officials as well as the bureaucrats that advise them.
The complicity of accomplices begins with ignoring abundant warnings in the prelude to the 9/11 attacks. It extends to the media’s looking away from the mounting evidence of 9/11 as a classic example of false flag terrorism.[xi] The complicity of officialdom edges towards involvement when it comes to setting up Islamic patsies that are sometimes paid and manipulated by agents who claim to be fighting terror on our behalf. In the black markets of the privatized terror economy the stimulation, manipulation and exploitation of fear reigns supreme. It is the universal gold for those who combine the business of promoting war, empowering the police and the selling of private security with enterprise of managing public perceptions.
The areas of direct involvements by officialdom are spread out across the vast complexities of this, the most many-faceted and ultra-high-tech of twenty-first century crimes. Much of the official involvement was, no doubt, so tightly compartmentalized and so well contained within rigid protocols of command-and-control, as well as “need-to-know,” that many who contributed to the crime’s commission may not be aware to this day of the consequences of their actions or inactions.
The defense of ignorance, however, has only limited application here. Some extremely high-placed wizards, with vast access to resources, technical expertise, and political knowhow, were required to oversee the murderous operations. To what extent were these wizards acting in concert? It remains to be seen if 9/11 was a single operation successfully executed by a cohesive group of plotters or whether it was a somewhat botched operation embodying the work two or more partnered but competing cabals.
In order to get even remotely close to the full story we need a genuine criminal investigation as free as possible from the kind of political manipulation that demeans and disqualifies the work of the tainted 9/11 Commission. A real investigation, which would be more likely to happen in the UN than the US, must be followed by a trial of the most credibly accused individuals. We already know enough—indeed, much more than enough-- to include Dick Cheney among the accused.
Even, however, the partial story that can now be put together points to conclusions that are very unlike the account of the crime we were fed within hours of the Twin Towers falling. In spite of the quick destruction and secreting away of so much of the evidence by those with most to hide, enough proof survives to make a key point abundantly clear. As is often verified by high-ranking military personnel around the world, the scope and sophistication of the 9/11 attacks marks the event as the work of skilled professionals highly expert in their respective fields.
Near the top of the hierarchy of expertise represented in the 9/11 crime is psychological warfare, a specialty of Mossad and the CIA. As epitomized by ten years of propagandistic coverage of 9/11 and the 9/11 Wars, the subversion of the instruments of mass communications has become far more pronounced than in the mid-1970s.[xii] In those days a Congressional investigation revealed that the CIA’s Project Mockingbird employed about 3000 journalists to sabotage truth in reporting through covert censorship, distortion, smears and outright lies conducted in the name of Cold War anti-communism. How many journalists have been hired as agents of disinformation with all the massive budgets funding the Global War on Terror?
In our own times, when the life support systems of native populations can be bombed for “the protection of civilians” and for “humanitarian purposes;” when “war” is regularly presented as the best remedy for “terror;” when themilitary killing of innocents is brushed aside and trivialized as “collateral damage;” when Barack Obama can face the world and openly boast of his government’s claim to have murdered, without any trial, America’s number one patsie, the mental environment has become polluted beyond belief.
The criminal responsibility for all the lies, distortions and cover-up-- the prohibited propaganda on behalf of illegal and aggressive wars[xiii]—goes far beyond the illegal tapping of the telephones of the families of 9/11 victims or the bribing of cops. Arrest Rupert Murdoch. Arrest those criminal politicians that the Murdoch’s media empire helped to install and maintain in their cockpits of ill-gotten power. For starters, Arrest George Bush, Arrest Tony Blair, Arrest Dick Cheney, Arrest Benjamin Netanyahu. [xiv]
These ringleaders of the highest levels of organized crime make Al Capone’s Chicago look like a kindergarten.
The lies and crimes of 9/11 include the active involvement of banking and insurance interests that are both the main beneficiaries and prominent behind-the-scene directors of the world’s preeminent military-industrial complex. Those with the investigative common sense to follow the money in what Canadian professor Peter Dale Scott has termed, The Road to 9/11, should pay particular attention to the financial machinations revealed in the Iran-Contra affair and in the related scandals that brought down the international operations of the Pakistani-based, Saudi-funded Bank of Credit and Commerce International.[xv]
However they were made to happen, the events of 9/11 had the effect of, in the words of Naomi Klein, “casting the US in the same role in which Israel cast itself, facing the same threat.” “The real legacy of 9/11,” my Canadian compatriot wrote in 2004 in The Guardian of UK, was “the Likudisation of the world.”[xvi]
Backing Both Sides as a Tactic of Profiteering in the Business of War
The first Queen Elizabeth helped establish the oceanic force that would become the British Navy. For a cut of the action the Protestant Queen transformed pirates like Walter Raleigh into the privateers, legally chartered to seize Roman Catholic gold and silver from Spanish cargo ships leaving Mexico. The juridical slight of hand that made privateers of pirates provided a key to England’s historic defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588.
If the booty and violence of pirates could be channeled to imperial advantage by extending privateers royal charters, why not extend the same tricks of acquistion to the colonization of lands and populations across the oceans. The imperial logic of privatized conquest was thus extended to a royal charter for the East India Company, the polity that became the great prototype for many colonizing ventures to come.
These ventures extended from Cecil Rhodes’ South Africa Company, to the United Fruit Company, to Halliburton, BCCI, Blackwater, and AIG. AIG lies at ground zero in the eruption of the financial contagion that began in 2008 and still infects the global economy. Its dealings also intersect suggestively with many of the unsolved mysteries of 9/11. This extremely complex insurance and intelligence-gathering conglomerate helped extend the imperial machinery of the Opium Wars into the geopolitics of financial derivatives and Eurasian pipelines.[xvii]
Many enemies were met and defeated in the process of globalizing the corporate empire of Anglo-America. Some of these enemies were real and substantial. Other enemy groups were invented and manufactured. Sometimes the manufactured enemies were organized, armed and built up by the colonizing power in order to make land grabs look like just wars waged to advance the common good. Occasionally the conditions of combat were almost entirely fictional, like when Madison Avenue guru Edward Bernays was hired by United Fruit and the CIA in order to stage manage a concocted drama reported as fact.
Bernays’ psy op, a prototype for many similar Cold War frauds to come, depicted in the early 1950s gathering hoards of communist revolutionaries about to seize Central America if the USA did not spring to the defense of the capitalist heartland by backing illusory freedom fighters in Guatemala. In the process the elected government of Jacobo Arbenz was overthrown in a US-backed coup. Thereafter the largely Mayan population of Guatemala was relegated to series of murderous and repressive military dictatorships whose genocidal excesses reached new extremes when President Efrain Rios Montt, a favourite of Ronald Reagan, went on a particularly ruthless killing spree. This genocidal campaign of the 1980s demonstrated that the Indian Wars of the Americas have never really ended.
There was nothing imaginary about the Nazi enemy whose meteoric rise to power in central Europe led to the clash in the Second World War between Hitler’s, Mussolini’s and Hirohito’s fascist forces and the allied forces commanded by Churchill, Stalin and Roosevelt. Even this conflict, however, was engineered to some extent to serve a variety of elite agendas. Hitler’s military-industrial regime of slavery, eugenics and master-race fantasies was built up with the direct involvement of many major US corporations. Among the most important of Hitler’s military contractors were Ford, GM, IBM, ITT, GE, Dow Chemical and the notorious IG Farbens’ partner in the slave labor camp at Auschwitz, the Rockefeller clan’s Standard Oil of New Jersey.
The plutocrats overseeing these expansionary corporate dynamos of high-tech industry, together with the bankers that backed them, tended to prefer the corporatist capitalism of Hitler to the mediated, union-friendly New Deal capitalism of Roosevelt. Moreover they looked to the corporatism of Hitler and his well disciplined agents of jack-booted order as a block against the spread of Soviet-style communism into the German-speaking heartland of Central Europe. On quite another level it is tempting to read the deep-state politics of that era as guided by the Anglo-American objective of preventing the consolidation of Germany and Russia, the two polities that, if merged, might conceivably jump out ahead in the imperial race to dominate global society.
In order to understand the conditions we face on this, the tenth anniversary of 9/11, it is important to look at the current legacies flowing from the installation by some of the most important US-based companies of their industrial enterprises on both sides of the Second World War. This history is very applicable to understanding the deep politics of the 9/11 Wars as well as the civil war being made to take shape in the oil patch of northern Africa.
Behind the war profiteering of industrialists sits the power of an imperial banking establishment with a very old pedigree. This pedigree goes back, for instance, to the innovations of Italian financiers who funded the anti-Muslim Crusades and then the Vatican’s mission to spread Christendom through the expanding Roman Catholic empires of Spain, Portugal and France. It was the Genoese branch of the Italian banking establishment that helped set in motion the modern era of globalization by funding Christopher Columbus’s quest on behalf of Spain for a westward-pointing trade route to the riches of the Orient.
From 1492 to the present, the world’s biggest fortunes have been derived from the financial backing of competing sides in armed conflict. This propensity is abundantly illustrated by the banking history of European warfare and its extension in the military and commercial competition of the imperial powers for overseas control of natural resources, slaves, trade franchises and the other forms of wealth and prestige to be derived from colonial possessions.
The well-established bankers’ technique of encouraging and funding the armed build up of antagonists, and then backing all sides in domestic or international conflicts, finds an extension in Wall Street’s preoccupation with hedge funds based on the misapplication of insurance to the construction of financial derivatives.
The manufacturing of al-Qaeda as an Islamic monster of global proportions can be seen as the renewal of old tactics by double-dealing bankers seeking to hedge their bets. While the al-Qaeda scam marks a continuation of some old practices, however, the larger fraud within which the al-Qaeda scam is embedded also marks new departures in the business of warfare, banking, energy politics and drug dealing. As illustrated by the technological prowess displayed for the attentive in the controlled demolitions of the three WTC Towers, a Black psy op on the scale of 9/11 has never, to the best of my knowledge, been attempted before.
The word and the concept of al-Qaeda emerged in course of the CIA-backed anti-Soviet campaign in Afghanistan dubbed by a book and a Hollywood movie of the same name as Charlie Wilson’s war. The organizing and building up of a proxy army of Islamic theocrats to defeat the Soviet-backed Najibullah regime is one of the best-documented episodes of Reagan’s anti-communist crusade. Some of the deep politics underlying this important chapter in the genesis of the 9/11 Wars are briefly exposed in the revelations that emerged from the Iran-Contra and BCCI scandals.
The Anglo-American-Israeli mounting of the Global War on Terror took place to serve a number of agendas, some of them complementary and some of them somewhat discordant. It is perfectly fair to refer to the model of the Crusades as the preeminent example being drawn upon in this psy op to define the so-called “West” as the outcome of a trajectory of Judeo-Christian advancement set against the stubborn and retrograde backwardness of the Islamic enemy.
But that meme of a Judeo-Christian war against Islamic evil cuts against the importance to the West of the heritage of Al-Andalus, the most brilliant effusion of Moorish Spain. In Andalusia many Jews and Christians were able to thrive in an Islamic caliphate whose scholars immersed themselves deeply in many traditions including that of Greco-Roman civilization. This scholarship emerging from the cultural and scientific sophistication of the Arab world forms an essential part of what we now refer to as the Renaissance, when the wheels of progress started to move towards the century of Enlightenment, the prelude to the Industrial Revolution.
Vigilantes in Uniform
As The Washington Post has outlined in an important series of feature articles, “Top Secret America,” 9/11 gave rise to the most opulent make-work project ever undertaken by the US federal government.[xviii] Obama’s elevation by whatever name of Bush’s Global War on Terror is becoming the ailing capitalist superpower’s only growth field. It is the sad replacement for a once-vibrant industrial economy that until the decade of Ronald Reagan was the envy of the world for the abundant creativity of its manufacturing sector.
As long as a decent portion of American industrial creativity was aimed after the Second World War at objectives other than killing, maiming, jailing and otherwise controlling people through police-state repression and barrages of disinformation, the US economy floated the vibrancy of a strong middle class. This middle class included millions upon millions of unionized workers, a good number of them Black. Sadly this healthy condition no longer prevails.
The decline of America the Manufacturer to make way for the corporatist ascent of Top Secret America diminishes hope for positive change throughout the world. In the same country that has beguiled the global community with the genius of, say, Jazz, Rhythm and Blues, Charlie Chaplin, Louie Armstrong, Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, Motown, James Brown, the Beach Boys, Bob Dylan, Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder and Prince, the failed-rock-star president prepares the way for his government’s “humanitarian” bombing of Libya through a fake burial of Geronimo bin Laden at sea. The growing global movement demanding full disclosure on the lies and crimes of 9/11 is not some luxury of self-indulgence. It is not some ephemeral whim drawing attention away from more important matters as the late great Howard Zinn, the people’s historian, recently declared. Put plainly, Zinn was monumentally wrong in 2008 when he was filmed dismissing a questioner soliciting the sage’s help in exposing the substance and broader significance of the 9/11 fraud. As is often the case when so-called “truthers” step up to the microphone to ask the featured speaker for comment on a 9/11-related matter, Zinn became condescending. He described his questioner’s preoccupations as “ a diversion from what we really have to do.” [xix]
In my view Zinn would later demonstrate himself the importance of moving beyond his prejudices to distinguishing fact from fiction in the 9/11 myth. This myth, which is essential to the constructed demonology of al-Qaeda, pictures Judeo-Christian martyrs being sacrificed to feed the lust of Islamic terrorists to punish the West. On 9/11 al-Qaeda was cast as the all-purpose boogeyman, the quintessence of terrorism, to justify the invasions, occupations and assaults on civil liberties already put in motion in the back rooms of executive power where Rupert Murdoch was but a servant to more devious criminals than him.
Zinn’s breakthrough came in his essay The Bomb, the last published piece he ever wrote. This essay was put into print in San Francisco in 2010 by City Lights Books. Zinn’s reflections are especially personal because he reflects on his own role in the Second World War. He was “a bombardier sitting in the Plexiglas nose of a B-17, operating [his] bombsight, observing flashes of light below as bombs hit, but seeing no human beings, hearing no screams, seeing no blood, totally unaware that down below there might be children dying, rendered blind, with arms or legs severed.” (p. 18)
Zinn then goes on to describe his government’s War on Terror featuring bombing raids on Muslim populations in Eurasia and now in northern Africa as well. Zinn writes, What you see over and over again in news reports is the words “suspected terrorist” or “suspected Al Qaeda”—meaning that “intelligence” is not sure whom we are bombing, that we are willing to justify the killing of a “suspect” in Iraq or Afghanistan or Pakistan, something we would not accept in New York or San Francisco. This suggests, to our shame, that the lives of people other than Americans are of lesser importance. (p. 19)
With this telling passage Zinn anticipates some core issues that we must investigate vigorously in the wake of revelations about the real function of Rupert Murdoch’s media network in the corrupt empire of the privatized terror economy. The real governors of the Anglo-American-Israeli criminal cartels seize and retain power by manipulating the collaboration between media and the police, between media and the upper echelons of the national security state. In this axis of oppression, political contests for elected office come to resemble the fluffy inconsequence of syrupy soap operas. Elected officials become actors in dramas following plots they neither direct nor write, as was probably the case when President Obama read from the teleprompter to announce his government’s murder of Osama bin Laden.
This crime against democracy depends on poisoning the minds of citizens so we become hypnotized, terrorized and shocked into robot-like compliance. It depends on the regular presentation of fiction as fact. It depends on sophisticated techniques of psychological warfare to make it OK for our guys to murder and disable the diabolical Other. It depends on the subordination of the rule of law to the rule of political expediency and force.
As in the days when lives and careers were destroyed with McCarthyesque accusations that this or that individual, group or country was Red, commie, pinko, so in our own times a similar tactic is made to prevail. When some can be so easily smeared and dehumanized through the application of the hot-button labels such as al-Qaeda, Taliban, Black Block, Mohawk Warrior, or Truther, the prospects of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are diminished for all citizens. Who will they come for next?
The hair-trigger responses that these toxic terms are calculated to elicit have been made to preempt honest discussion based on mutual respect, education, careful research, evidence, and the subtleties of nuance. The constant barrage of inducements to hate and despise whole categories of the human family is stealing attention away from where the focus of our concern should really be pointed.
We must no longer tolerate the war hawks’ sick trick of building up enemies so they can blackmail us into buying into the frauds of their protection racket. This con is pulling us away from what we have to do to save ourselves and our posterity from a hellish future of war, mass famine and impoverishment, radioactive contamination and all the other environment and economic disasters now heavily bearing down upon us.
It is hard to believe how far the illogic of those who promote war as a remedy for terror has come over the last difficult decade. Everywhere this illogic is freeing vigilantes in uniform to hunt down their prey, as Obama claims to have done with Osama.
[i]Much of the information outlined in this presentation is elaborated in far greater detail in Anthony J. Hall’s Earth into Property: Colonization, Decolonization, and Capitalism (Montreal: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2010). This text is the second volume of a larger project, The Bowl with One Spoon, published also by MQUP Press. The first volume of the Bowl project is The American Empire and the Fourth World, published in 2003 and slightly revised in the 2005 paperback edition. Both texts include detailed indexes and very extensive endnotes for those wishing to know more about specific topics or those wishing to check the evidentiary basis for the claims made here. With a couple of exceptions, the endnotes below refer to the documentary source of speeches, or to publications that have appeared after the Bowl project’s completion, or to added information and explanations concerning terms that will be familiar to some, unfamiliar to many.
[ii] Barak Obama, “Remarks by the President of the United States on Killing Osama bin Laden,” Robert Sullivan, ed., One Nation, America Remembers September 11, 2001 Ten Years Later (New York: Time-Life Entertainment/Little, Brown and Company, 2011), p. 169
[iii] On the Bush family, Geronimo, the national security state, and Yale’s Skull and Bones see Hall’s Earth into Property, 253, 352, 447, 518, and his American Empire and the Fourth World, pp. xvii-xix
[iv] George W. Bush, “Remarks at the National Day of Prayer and Remembrance, 14 September, 2001,” Episcopal National Church, at
[v] Address by President George W. Bush to Joint Houses of Congress, Washington Post, 20 September, 2001, at
[vi] PNAC is a short form for the project for the New American Century. There is a wide perception among those engaged in the quest for 9/11 truth that PNAC’s report in 2000, “Rebuilding America’s Defenses,” anticipated 9/11 by indicating only a “New Pearl Harbor” would be sufficiently influential public opinion in order to clear the way for the implementation of its recommendations. See
[vii] Proceedings of the Jerusalem Conference on International Terrorism, held under the auspices of the Jonathan Institution, July2-5 1979, Binyamin Netanyahu, ed, (Jerusalem: Jerusalem Conference on International Terrorism, 1979); Netanyahu, Terrorism: How the West Can Win (New York: Farrar, Straus, Giroux, 1986)
[viii] Remarks by President Barack Obama at West Point, December 1, 2009, The White House at
[ix] See Hall, “From Hiroshima to Fukushima, 1945-2011: A Nuclear Narrative of Hubris and Tragedy,” 28 March, 2011 at
[x] David Ray Griffin, 9/11 Ten Years Later: When State Crimes Against Democracy Succeed (Northhampton Mass.: Interlink Books, 20110
[xi] False Flag attacks reflect the reality that for governments to go to war they must have some measure of support from their home constituencies. This need has grown with the spread of voting as the primary means of choosing public officials. False flag attacks are violent acts manipulated by agencies planning to go to war on targeted groups. The goal is to make the violent episodes look like acts of murder and mayhem perpetrated by the targeted groups when the violence is, in fact, the covert creation of the agency doing the targeting. False flag attacks are designed to deprive targeted groups of public sympathy in the home population of the belligerent power. They are designed as illusions to trick home populations into viewing their own governments’ acts of aggression as acts of self-defense. Well-known false flag attacks include the sinking of the Maine in the prelude to the Spanish-American War, the Reichstag Fire blamed by Hitler’s Nazi regime on a Jewish communist man, and the Gulf of Tonkin incident prior to the heightening of the US military intervention in Vietnam.
[xii] See Hall’s, The Globe and Mail: A saga of Recklessness and Lack of Accountability, The Canadian Charger, 13 January, 2011m at
[xiii] See Michael Kearney, The Prohibition of Propaganda for War in International Law (New York: Oxford University Press, 2008)
[xv] Peter Dale Scott, The Road to 9/11: Wealth, Empire, and the Future of America (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2007)
[xvi] Naomi Klein, “The Likud Doctrine, The Guardian, 10 September, 2004 at
Benjamin Netanyahu is the current leader of the Likud Party and Prime Minister of Israel. Likud’s ideological roots lie in Revisionist Zionism. They lie in the ideology of Irgun and the Stern gang as expressed historically in, for instance, the decision to bomb the King David Hotel In Jerusalem in 1946. This act of murderous terrorism or freedom fighting, depending on one’s perspective, was aimed at pressuring Great Britain to leave its mandate derived from the League of Nations to govern Palestine/Israel. Likud presently is a right-wing natand Internet Addictsionalistic party that has its origins in the goal of realizing Greater Israel, Eretz Yisrael Ha-Shlema, the Whole Land of Israel.
[xvii] See Chapter 15 of Earth into Property
[xviii] Diana Priest and William Arkin, “Top Secret America,” 19 July, 2010, at
[xix] Paul Joseph Watson, “Howard Zinn: I Don’t Care If 9/11 Was an Inside Job,” Prison Planet, 18 November, 2008, at
Anthony J. Hall is Professor of Globalization Studies. His recent book, Earth into Property, sets 9/11 and the 9/11 Wars in the context of over 500 years of globalization. The publication of the American Library Association called Earth into Property "a scholarly tour de force" The Independent in the UK chose it as one of the best books of 2010. Professor Hall worked recently with Splitting The Sky, Cynthia McKinney, Ramsay Clark, Joshua Blakeney and others to pressure law enforcement officials in Canada to arrest George W. Bush for war crimes. Professor Hall's recent work includes seminal investigation and publication on the nuclear catastrophe at Fukushima.
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