Sunday, October 30, 2005

'Saddam accepted UAE exile plan to avert Iraq war'

Saddam accepted UAE exile plan to avert Iraq war-TV
Reuters October 29 2005

Comment by : We reported on this before the war even started and were called conspiracy theorists for doing so. The Neo-Cons would have never allowed it to happen because they wouldn't have had the excuse to bomb the country into oblivion and then hand out no bid rebuilding contracts to their cronies. That is more important to them than 2,000+ American troops and hundreds of thousands of dead innocent Iraqis.

DUBAI (Reuters) - Deposed Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein had secretly accepted a last-minute plan to go into exile to avert the 2003 Iraq war, but Arab leaders shot the proposal down, Al Arabiya television reported on Friday.

UAE President Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan al-Nahayan made the proposal for Saddam to go into exile at an emergency Arab summit just weeks before the U.S.-led war began in March 2003.
But the 22-member Arab League, led by Secretary-General Amr Moussa, refused to consider the initiative.

"We had got the final agreement from the different parties, the main players in the world and the person concerned -- Saddam Hussein -- within 24 hours," Mohammed bin Zayed, deputy head of the UAE armed forces and crown prince of Abu Dhabi, told the UAE-based channel in a documentary.

"So we were coming to put facts on the table, and there would have been results had it been discussed," he said.

Egypt's President Hosni Mubarak says in the documentary that the United States had signaled its support for the proposal.

The documentary says the Iraqi delegation at the summit in Egypt had been unaware of Saddam's "secret consent" to the plan, which Iraqi Foreign Minister Naji Sabri dismissed as "silly".

It was not clear why Arab opposition alone scuppered the arrangements, which Al Arabiya said would have seen Saddam go into UAE exile with a promise of protection from legal action.

Saddam and seven other senior figures under his rule this month went on trial in Baghdad for crimes against humanity over the killing of 148 Shi'ite men from the town of Dujail.

The United States led a coalition to topple Saddam, saying he was hiding weapons of mass destruction. None were ever found.

The war, an ongoing insurgency against occupying troops and the U.S.-backed authorities, and an explosion of crime amid the post-war disorder has cost thousands of lives.


Aziz denies saying Galloway personally profited from oil-for-food.

In The Independent, 30 October 2005, Stephen Khan reported that Tariq Aziz, the former deputy prime minister of Iraq, has denied telling investigators that George Galloway personally profited from the UN oil-for-food programme for Iraq.

Mr Aziz's lawyer, Badia Aref, described claims regarding the Respect MP for Bethnal Green and Bow as "lies".

Republican Senator Norm Coleman used interviews with Aziz as evidence that Saddam's regime granted 23 million barrels of oil to Mr Galloway and his Mariam Appeal fund. The US Congressional report said Aziz, under questioning by the subcommittee, had discussed oil allocations with Galloway. "These are lies ... He [Aziz] denied this," Mr Aref said. "It is part of a media campaign aimed at smearing Galloway's reputation," said the lawyer.


India, Pakistan and Mossad

Vijay Prashad, at Znet, 8 Aug 2001, wrote about the links between right-wing Hinduism and Zionism.

Prashad wrote:

"Hindutva is much like Zionism, for both extol the importance of the Race-State, and both cast aspersions at the presence of a Muslim minority...

"Among semi-fascists the links are deep...

"In January 1963, a few months after India's border war with China, the government of India reached out to the Israeli military establishment and opened a dialogue (the story broke in the Hindustan Times on 15 May 1980). Two years later, Israeli cabinet minister Yigal Alon visited India. Mossad and India's Research Analysis Wing (RAW) shared information and analysis from the late 1970s onwards.

"In 1992, India openly embraced Israel's military establishment. There are several reasons for this shift. First, the Indian military was eager to find a supplier for military hardware to replace the by then defunct Soviet pipeline. Second, the Indian government's enthusiastic 1991 entry into IMFundamentalism enabled the heresy of a rapid pro-Americanism, and on its back, a pro-Zionism. 1992 also signaled the emergence of the Hindu Right as a leading contender for national office, and its ideology remains far more compatible with that of the US-Israel than that of the Left and the Center-Left.

"A few months after the establishment of full diplomatic relations, a six member Israeli Defense contingent came to India to discuss arms issues with the Indian Ministry of Defense. Military preceded the political bureau.

"India's first shopping list was loaded with aircraft demands, mainly to replace the ailing MIG-21 and MIG-29 fleet. But by the time the Hindu Right took power in 1998, the list grew much longer and far more complex. It also reveals the sub-imperial ambitions of the Hindu Right over southern Asia. In May 1998, a few days after the nuclear tests, a delegation from Israeli Aircraft Industries toured India to sell their pilotless aircraft anti-ship missiles...

"These weapons would put India into contention as the main power not only in south Asia, but perhaps, as the second front against the Chinese (a move that enabled the US to revise its military doctrine to fight only one full-scale war; its proxy powers would take care of the other one, in the new scenario)....

"The restless lions of west and south Asia join the tigers of east Asia to encircle China and the predominantly Muslim states of west and central Asia."


According to Rediff, 8 September 2003, Pakistan has links to Mossad.

"After she returned to power towards the end of 1993, Benazir Bhutto intensified the ISI's liaison with Mossad. She too began to cultivate the American Jewish lobby. Benazir is said to have a secret meeting in New York with a senior Israeli emissary, who flew to the US during her visit to Washington, DC in 1995 for talks with Clinton.

"From his days as Bhutto's director general of military operations, Pervez Musharraf has been a keen advocate of Pakistan establishing diplomatic relations with the state of Israel.

"The new defence relationship between India and Israel -- where the Jewish State has become the second-biggest seller of weapons to India, after Russia -- bother Musharraf no end. Like another military dictator before him, the Pakistan president is also wary that the fear of terrorists gaining control over Islamabad's nuclear arsenal could lead to an Israel-led pre-emptive strike against his country.

"Musharraf is the first Pakistani leader to speak publicly about diplomatic relations with Israel. His pragmatic corps commanders share his view that India's defence relationship with Israel need to be countered and are unlikely to oppose such a move. But the generals are wary of the backlash from the streets. Recognising Israel and establishing an Israeli embassy in Islamabad would be unacceptable to the increasingly powerful mullahs who see the United States, Israel and India as enemies of Pakistan and Islam."


Wednesday, October 26, 2005


An article by Clayton Hallmark, 29 July 2005, at :

Karl Rove’s foreign-policy advisor, Michael Ledeen, proclaimed "the rightness of the fascist cause" in 1972.

In 1984 he got George Bush Sr to appoint Iranian arms merchant and Iranian/Israeli double-agent Manucher Ghorbanifar as a middleman in the scandalous Iran-Contra affair.

Ledeen has been a fixture in Washington and Israel ever since, advocating a modern version of the Crusades against Islamic nations...


Rocco Martino is a 66-year-old Italian gentleman who worked on and off for the Italian SISMI (analogous to the CIA) for many years and who also peddled the same information to various spy organizations and publications - a convicted felon and international stool pigeon, just the kind of person Ledeen’s associates needed.

After being fired by SISMI (for receiving stolen checks, among other things), he convinced the French intelligence in 2000 that he knew all about Africa and the trafficking of conventional and nonconventional arms. To avoid stepping on the toes of Italian intelligence, the French gave him a contact, or handler, in Brussels. Martino’s handler in Brussels asked him to obtain every type of news or reference to contraband uranium from Niger... where mining was under the jurisdiction of two companies controlled by the gigantic French mining company Cogema.

Martino soon was knocking at the door of the embassy of Niger in Rome, where he met an Italian functionary (a "lady," by most reports - but this was no lady, as we shall see). Martino provided the French with documents showing that Iraq may have been planning to expand trade with Niger. In fact, the first set of documents did not refer to uranium, and the trade plans were probably the typical sort of relationship Arab oil states had with a whole range of third-world countries.

Martino was surprised when he saw that the French immediately jumped to the wrong conclusion and thought that the documents indicated an Iraqi interest in uranium. (We now know that Iraq had no nuclear program.) "We need additional confirmation and more detailed information," said the French secret service. Martino set out to satisfy his French patrons with additional documents.


At night, between the first and second of the January 2001, a mysterious thief came to the embassy of Niger in Rome and into the residence of the counselor in charge. It turned out that some letterhead and seals were missing. A second dossier on Niger-Iraq trade soon came into Martino’s hands, one that included references to uranium trafficking. Martino claims he got it from embassy personnel and that he thought it was authentic.

Martino passed it on to the French secret service, who had paid for it, and also to Panorama [a magazine owned by Bush ally and Italian president Silvio Berlusconi], which assessed it by dispatching a female reporter to Niger. Panorama also turned the file over to the US Embassy in Rome for cross-checking in the US.

The female journalist soon told Martino that the trip to Niger had not produced any real confirmation, and also the French confirmed to Martino that the reports he had passed on to them were groundless. In other words, Bush’s war rationale was debunked way back in 2001 by amateur and professional sleuths.

Furthermore, it was a very amateurish forgery, not likely produced through official channels by any state intelligence agency with their vast resources. However, it was soon resuscitated as the Bush administration, in its first year, ramped up its public relations campaign for war.


Michael Ledeen organized a meeting in Rome to gather evidence to support the planned war.

Present were:

1. Michael Ledeen, Karl Rove’s foreign policy advisor and organizer of the meeting

2. Nicolo Pollari, head of the the Italian equivalent of the CIA, the SISMI

3. Italy’s Minister of Defense, Antonio Martino (no relation apparently to the spy Rocco Martino), Pollari’s boss

4. Larry Franklin, an American who presently is being prosecuted in the US for giving classified information to an Israeli front group, AIPC (American Israel Public Affairs Committee) -- which some would call "spying," even though he has not been charged with espionage

5. Harold Rhode: member of Dick Cheney’s Office of Special Plans, protege of Ledeen, go-between with Iraqi exile and CIA asset (at the time) Ahmed Chalabi.

Ledeen already had a longstanding friendship with Francesco Pazienza, an Italian felon and forger who had been kicked out of the official Italian intelligence organization SISMI but who had found a new home in the renegade intelligence agency P-2 (Propaganda Due). Pazienza apparently was not present but definitely was known to Italian intelligence agents, including Rocco Martino, as well as to Ledeen.

Ledeen also was a personal friend of Pollari, who, like Ledeen, is a master of the card game bridge (Ledeen writes columns on it). There are close ties between Pollari’s official intelligence organization, SISMI, and Pazienza’s unnofficial one, P-2.

In fact, P-2 recruits from SISMI.

This little group dusted off Martino’s discredited second dossier on Iraq-Niger trade, with the uranium references. The Bush administration now had its causus belli.


Former US Ambassador (to Gabon) Joseph Wilson made the trip, apparently at the behest of the CIA, to determine the authenticity of the charges in Martino’s documents, even though the CIA already could see they were forgeries.

Even the Panorama reporter could have saved him the trouble.

Wilson reported back to the CIA that there was no proof that Iraq had sought uranium in Niger.

The US government knew there was no proof.


In London, Tony Blair spoke on September 24, 2002, for the first time on the attempts of Saddam Hussein to obtain uranium from Africa.

Bush soon began to drive in the nail using the same argument.

Remember, Martino had delivered the phony dossier this was based on to the US embassy in Rome over a year before. The US State Department and CIA rejected it and even Panorama had debunked it.

The Pentagon, too, knew it was false, of course, but the Wolfowitz-Feith-Perle Defense Policy Board axis plus Bush and Cheney and their respective aides, Karl Rove and I. Lewis Libby (both now subjects of interest to US Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald and his grand jury in Washington, DC), went with it anyway.


"The British Government has learned that Saddam Hussein... ...recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa."

Sixteen little words in Bush’s January 2003 State of the Union message that will be remembered in history with more honorable presidential words like, "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself" (FDR).

Bush was going on the forged documents procured by Rocco Martino, debunked by all pertinent experts, and debunked by Joseph Wilson.

The US overcame Iraqi opposition -- temporarily (resistance became "suicide," now wonders, for whom?) -- mainly by bombing civilian structures rather than fighting, beginning on March 19, 2003

Wilson’s outraged response to using, for murder, evidence he had debunked got his family, or at least his wife, targeted by that amoral husk of a man, Karl Rove, who, along with I. Lewis (Scooter) Libby (Cheney’s chief aide) outed Valerie Wilson to Robert Novak, Judith Miller (the jailed New York Times reporter and pro-war hawk), Matthew Cooper (Time’s reporter who has jeopardized Rove in a criminal investigation), and numerous other journalists. Most, like Miller and Cooper, wisely resisted Rove’s bait.


The war is not just about oil, Israel’s fears/ambitions, or US hegemony.

There are contracts and contractors in Iraq.

Modern-day carpetbaggers with briefcases descended like a plague of scorpions on the poor, bloodied, bombed-out, grieving people of Iraq.

They included the daughter of the war’s chief banshee -- Simone Ledeen, Michael’s young daughter.


At Ledeen’s (Rove’s brain) meeting with Italian intelligence in December 2001 was one Larry Franklin.

The FBI caught Franklin, 58 -- a Pentagon analyst on Iran and an Air Force Reserve colonel -- meeting two agents of AIPAC, Israel’s US "lobby," in an Alexandria, VA, restaurant in June 2003.

AIPAC employees -- including AIPAC agents at the meeting, Steven Rosen and Keith Weissman -- had been under FBI surveillance for a couple of years.

The FBI was surprised by Franklin showing up and began investigating him, too. The FBI arrested Franklin, on May 4, 2005, for illegally disclosing highly classified information to AIPAC -- spying for AIPAC, in other words. He is free on bond and is expected to plead innocent at his trial.

Why hasn’t the FBI arrested anyone at the AIPAC? Who in the Bush administration is blocking justice in this case?

For that matter, why hasn’t the FBI interviewed Rocco Martino, the acknowledged and admitted procurer of the phony Niger uranium documents? They are known to be investigating the phony documents.

The United States has had no qualms about getting audacious in Italy by having the CIA abduct an Egyptian cleric, Abu Omar, off the streets of Milan in February 2003, for "exceptional rendering," aka "torture," in Egypt. This open violation of Italian sovereignty was supervised by the CIA’s station chief in Milan, Robert Seldon Lady, formerly of the New Orleans area.


It is my belief that the "Italian functionary," or "a lady," that Martino referred to was actually a Lady, Robert Seldon Lady Sr, the same man who headed up the torture abduction of Abu Omar.
Italian prosecutor Armando Spataro has just obtained arrrest warrants for 6 more CIA spies in addition to the original 13 that included Robert Lady, in connection with the abduction.

Robert Seldon Lady, 51, lived in Abita Springs, Lousiana, until 2001, when he left for the Milan post.

He still has an address in New Orleans, according to Cryptome .

He and his wife Martha own a villa in the Italian countryside near Penango (Asti) and Turin, where they hoped to retire before he went on the lam.

Born in Honduras, he was an affable New York City cop in the 80s who infiltrated leftist groups.

He is something of an electronics hacker (at least of cell phones). And now he is a wanted felon in Europe.

During the operation, Lady apparently worked directly with the commander of the 31st Security Police Squadron, Lt. Col. Joseph Romano, USAF, at the Aviano Air Base in Italy.

Lt. Col. Romano, who currently works at the Pentagon, also is sought for interviewing by Italian prosecutors.

At the time, Romano worked under Brig Gen R. Michael Worden, commander of the 31st Fighter Wing, who also should have to answer some questions.

The Italian prosecutor could release the photographs of the American kidnap-torture perps at any time.

This case -- Robert Lady’s kidnapping of Abu Omar -- could become a very big story because of its possible effects on relations between nations.

By : Clayton HallmarkJuly Friday 29th 2005


Monday, October 24, 2005

David Cameron and former CIA director James Wolsey

'the list of Henry Jackson patrons 'reads like a Who's Who of US foreign-policy hawks: including the former CIA director James Wolsey.'

In The Guardian, 24 October 2005, Nil Clark reminds us that David Cameron has neocon associations. The Guardian,3604,1598988,00.html

Clark points out:

1. David Cameron favours flat-rate tax, 'a far-right wheeze that would leave, according to a Treasury report, up to 30 million Britons worse off and the super-rich even richer'.

2. Cameron talks of "fighting to end the EU's damaging social role".

3. Cameron 'is an unreconstructed hawk, his campaign masterminded by the neoconservative trio of Tory MPs Osborne, Michael Gove and Ed Vaizey, all enthusiastic cheerleaders for Pax Americana. Osborne hailed the "excellent neoconservative case" for action against Iraq in 2003 and denies that the invasion has radicalised Muslim opinion.'

Gove and Vaizey are signatories to the statement of principles of the Henry Jackson Society, which has its UK launch next month.

The society is named after the US Democratic senator who opposed detente with the Soviet Union.

The society calls for the "maintenance of a strong military with a global expeditionary reach".

Clark reports that 'the list of Henry Jackson patrons 'reads like a Who's Who of US foreign-policy hawks: including the former CIA director James Wolsey, William Kristol, editor of the Weekly Standard, and Richard Perle, former chairman of the Defence Policy Board and the man many see as the architect of the Iraq war'.

Cameron voted for the Iraq war.

According to Clark:

'Like all good neocons Cameron blamed the conflict on the French and their promise to veto any second UN security council resolution.'

"The central job of a new Tory leader is to put the Conservative argument in a different way ... " - these are the views of the Tories' modernising guru Daniel Finkelstein.

For him, 'the fact that Cameron looks moderate is all that matters'.

Clark writes: 'But those not enamoured by the prospect of a regressive tax system, a revival of 1980s economics, a hostile attitude to Europe or British participation in military invasions of Iran, Syria or any other country the US decides to attack in five or six years' time are well advised to read the small print'.


BBC and press support for Neocon David Cameron?


David Cameron is suspected of being the favourite of the oligarchs and the Neocons. (David Cameron and the Neo-Cons )

Thus the people who write the BBC news are said to be supporting Cameron.

The Telegraph, 24 October 2005, reported on alleged BBC and press support for Cameron:

According to the Telegraph, The David Davis camp has accused the BBC and newspapers of clear bias against Davis.

Derek Conway is the Davis camp's "chief whip".

Mr Conway claims that Mr Davis had fallen victim to a "servile" media, particularly the BBC, which seemed to believe that because Mr Cameron was an old Etonian, he was "born to rule".,16518,1599306,00.html

On 24 October 2005 The Guardian reported that Derek Conway condemned the BBC for "taking leave of its senses in its support" for Mr Cameron, and said the written press was being "servile" towards him.

Mr Conway attacked the BBC's "support" for Mr Cameron. "I think the BBC have decided who they want to lead the Tory party." he said.

Mr Conway accused "the office of Michael Howard" of appalling behaviour and dirty tricks against Mr Davis.

Liam Fox, ousted by MPs from the contest on Thursday, was quoted in the Mail on Sunday accusing Mr Davis of spreading smears about his alleged gay past.


Sunday, October 23, 2005

Hariri: prime witness in the UN report is a convicted criminal

From WRH:

Pivotal Witness in Mehlis Report is a Convicted Swindler

Posted Oct 22, 2005 at

The prime witness in the UN report on Syria is a convicted criminal. Note that the "lead" to the accusations is Assad's Uncle, who will take over when Assad leaves.

Translation of Spiegel article:,1518,381056,00.html

The creditibility of one of the key witnesses in special investigator Detlev Mehlis’ report on the Hariri murder case is in doubt. Suheir Sadik is a multiply convicted swindler.

Hamburg – The alleged intelligence agent al-Sadik, 42, on whose testimony a considerable portion of the investigation is based, has been convicted of , embezzlement and fraud, among other crimes. Even within the UN Commission investigating the murder of Lebanon’s former Prime Minster Rafik al-Hariri, which presented its report on Thursday, there is doubt of the credibility of the Syrian witness.

Sources within UN circles say that Sadik had undeniably lied. At first he had claimed to have left Beirut in the month prior to the deed. Then, at the end of September he admitted to having been involved in the implementation of the assassination. Apparently Sadik had received money from a third party for his testimony. According to a statement by his brother, Sadik had called him from Paris in late summer and said “I’ve become a millionaire!”

The skepticism is also nurtured by the fact that the contact to Mhelis was inititated through the Syrian dissident Rifaat al-Assad,, an uncle of President Bashir al-Assad, who opposes the regime in Damascus. Sadik is supposed to have made his apartment in the Beirut suburb Chalda available for several preparatory meetings in which Syrian intelligence officers participated. Sadik himself claims to have collected information for Syrian Intelligence in Lebanon’s Palestinian refugee camps.

The Syrian administration had already made a dossier with incriminating evidence about Sadik available to Western governments weeks ago, which was to show that Mehlis had been had by a notorious Syrian swindler.


From the Tehran Times:

Tehran Times Opinion Column, Feb. 16, By Hassan Hanizadeh

Mossad behind Hariri assassination

TEHRAN, Feb. 15 (MNA) -- Former Lebanese prime minister Rafiq Hariri was killed in a massive bomb blast in central Beirut on Monday.

The explosion destroyed a number of public buildings and vehicles, showing that the complicated terrorist act was carried out by a well equipped organization.

The situation in Lebanon and the region is now so critical that any discord could cause a new crisis for this small but strategic country.

Lebanon, which has been the cradle of peaceful coexistence among different religious and ethnic groups, experienced a 15-year civil war due to a series of domestic, regional, and international factors in the 1970s and 1980s.

The war left thousands of Muslim and Christian civilians dead, causing Lebanon huge financial losses.

In 1990, the various groups finally put aside their differences and calm and national unity ruled the country again.

Then, following the Zionist army’s defeat in south Lebanon in 2000, Lebanon was once more put into the worldwide spotlight.

Lebanon eventually regained its regional economic position thanks to reconstruction and economic restoration, partly due to the efforts of the late Hariri.

However, regional and trans-regional powers such as the United States and the Zionist regime are trying to steer Lebanon toward a crisis, aiming to extend their military and political presence in some parts of the Middle East and the Mediterranean.

The United States’ strong support of UN Resolution 1559, which requires Syria to withdraw its forces from Lebanese soil, is part of Washington’s plan to politically influence Lebanon and the region once again.

Israel and the U.S. seek to sever the spiritual and physical contacts between Syria and Lebanon in order to isolate Syria in the Middle East and check its political sway in the region.

Neither the Lebanese government nor the majority of its citizens want Syrian troops to quit their country.

However, if Syrian forces withdraw from Lebanese territory, it would surely pave the way for the political and military machinations of the United States and Israel.

The Lebanese and Syrian nations, due to their historical, ideological, and ethnic affinities, are in fact one nation in two separate lands. The regional and trans-regional powers must understand this and must realize that the two nations cannot be separated spiritually.

Now, the question is: Who benefited from the assassination of Hariri, a man who played a constructive role in the reestablishment of security in Lebanon?

All the evidence indicates that the Israeli intelligence service Mossad killed Hariri, since it had previously plotted to assassinate important Lebanese politicians.

The Mossad is trying to help the Zionist army claw its way back into Lebanon, since history has shown that the stability of Lebanon is not to the advantage of Israel.

Lebanon now faces a more complicated situation and should stay alert in order to thwart the Zionist regime’s plots to dominate the country once again.


David Cameron and the Neo-Cons


The next leader of the Labour Party may be David Miliband, who is Jewish.

What about the Conservative Party? David Cameron may become its leader.


Gaby Hinsliff and Ned Temko, in The Observer , 23 October 2005, listed the members of David Cameron's inner circle:

1. George Eustice started his political career with the UK Independence Party (which is reportedly pro-Israel and pro-Pentagon.)

2. Oliver Letwin has links to the Rothschilds.

3. Michael Gove is an admirer of the American neo-cons.

4. George Osborne is a fellow Oxford party animal.

5. Steve Hilton is in advertising.

6. Daniel Finkelstein is a Times journalist.

7. Matthew d'Ancona writes for The Telegraph.

According to the Observer article:

The brains of the operation is Michael Gove.


An article on Michael Gove at en.wikipedia:

He takes a pro-Israel line and has criticised anti-Americanism, anti-Semitism and several United Nations peace processes.

A self-confessed neo-conservative, he called for early intervention against Saddam Hussein.

Surprisingly, he stated in October 2004 of Tony Blair: "I can't hold it back any more; I love Tony!"

He is also a signatory of the Henry Jackson Society.

Gove is seen as part of an influential set of young up-and-coming Tories, sometimes disparagingly referred to as the Notting Hill set, including David Cameron, George Osborne, Edward Vaizey, Nicholas Boles and Rachel Whetstone. They are seen as modernisers, but also close to Michael Howard.


UK sunday papers - 23 October 2005

David Miliband to follow Blair?,6903,1598735,00.html

He "marginalised" and "dehumanised" her, "discarded" her from his affections and took a mistress.

Bird Flu: Are You Worried? No - 52%

Republican scandals

31% to pass maths?

The real solution: good teachers,,2092-1838220,00.html

Storm of deals in the North Sea


Saturday, October 22, 2005

CIA control of Australia? Collins, Toohey, Jenkins, control of oil

Mike Head, at wsws, 28 April 2004, reported that 'over the past two weeks, the government of Prime Minister John Howard has faced a virtual revolt from within the Australian military and intelligence establishment.'

Damaging secret documents have been leaked...

On 14 April 14 the Bulletin newsmagazine, published two classified documents.

One was a letter written to Howard in March 2005 by a former high-ranking Army intelligence expert, Lieutenant Colonel Lance Collins.

Collins listed what he called “poor performance or outright failures” by the intelligence agencies in recent years. They included

1. the unanticipated 1998 fall of the Suharto regime in Indonesia

(This was reportedly the work of Indonesian generals working for the CIA. Surely the Australian spies knew what their bosses were up to.)

2. the 1999 Indonesian military-backed massacres in East Timor

(Hamish McDonald in the Sydney Morning Herald 14 March 2002 revealed Australia's bloody East Timor secret: spy intercepts confirmed the Government knew of Jakarta's hand in the massacres. The Australian Government sat on explosive intelligence material which showed the direct involvement of senior Indonesian army generals in the violence which swept East Timor in 1999.

3. the October 2002 Bali bombings

(This was allegedly the work of some of those Indonesian generals who control the fake 'Moslem' extremist groups. And some of these Indonesian generals are reportedly working for the CIA.)

4. the absence of any “weapons of mass destruction” in Iraq.

(The Australian military surely knew there were no WMDs. Blair and Bush knew; and many users of blogs knew.)

Collins wants a Royal Commission into Intelligence.

According to WSWS:

Collins claims :

1. The Defence Intelligence Organisation (DIO) was trying to keep in with the Indonesian military.

2. This meant that Collins's military intelligence reports were ignored, from July 1998 onward. These reports warned that the Indonesian military was preparing a bloodbath in East Timor.

3. The DIO temporarily cut off intelligence to Collins and the troops involved in the Australian-led intervention into Timor.

According to WSWS:

Collins’ accusations carry considerable weight because they come from such a senior officer. In the mid-1990s, he became deputy director of military intelligence, one of the most sensitive military postings. From September 1999 to February 2000, he was principal intelligence officer for General Peter Cosgrove, the commander of the Timor intervention force.

The second secret document was a report filed by a naval barrister, Captain Martin Toohey, last September into a “redress of grievance” complaint by Collins after three years of official victimisation.

Toohey’s 36-page report, published almost in its entirety by the Bulletin, backed up Collins’ accusations about Timor and found that Collins was ostracised, denied promotion and driven to the brink of a mental breakdown because he had spoken the truth.

Toohey detailed an array of vindictive measures taken against Collins, including having his name splashed throughout the media in September 2001 as the subject of an Australian Federal Police search warrant over the earlier leaking of secret Timor documents exposing the government’s squashing of intelligence reports on the impending massacre. His career as an intelligence officer was effectively killed off.

Like Collins, Toohey speaks with considerable military authority. A Vietnam veteran, he was deputy director of Naval Security and a naval police investigator for 16 years and currently holds a top-secret security clearance.

He supported Collins’ charge that “a pro-Jakarta lobby exists in DIO, which distorts intelligence estimates to the extent that those estimates are heavily driven by Government policy which overlooks (or attributes the blame to other factions), atrocities and terrorist activities committed by the TNI [the Indonesian army]”. He concluded that “DIO reports what the government wants to hear”.

According to Toohey’s findings, Collins was told by Australian Defence Force Chief General John Baker in 1998 not to worry about the looming events in Timor “because we have a plan with the Indonesians to keep everybody else out of East Timor”.

This was a clear reference to the government’s efforts throughout 1998, in the wake of Suharto’s fall, to keep out Portugal, the former colonial ruler of East Timor. Portugal had resumed its claims to sovereignty during the 1990s, with the backing of the European Union. It challenged the 1989 Timor Gap Treaty, under which Australia had acquired the lion’s share of the vast offshore Timor Sea oil and gas fields, as a reward for being the only country in the world to formally recognise the Indonesian annexation of East Timor.

While Collins and Toohey refer to a “pro-Jakarta” lobby in the DIO, the fact is that until 1998-99 the entire political establishment regarded its alliance with the Suharto military dictatorship as the bedrock of Australia’s regional security. But with Suharto’s downfall, and with Portugal breathing down their necks, Howard and Foreign Minister Alexander Downer swung behind a UN autonomy ballot.

Still anxious to protect Canberra’s long-standing relations with the Indonesian military and political leadership, they blamed the militia violence in the lead-up to the August ballot on “rogue elements” in the armed forces. They strongly opposed the deployment of UN monitors, arguing instead that security should be left in the hands of the Indonesian military and police—the very forces organising the violence.

Despite feigning concern for the plight of the population, Howard and Downer calculated that post-poll atrocities would provide the pretext to dispatch troops to Timor with the overriding purpose of retaining control over the Timor Sea oil and gas projects against Australia’s rivals.

Howard under siege

Howard and Defence Minister Robert Hill have flatly rejected Collins’ demand for a royal commission. In the past, such investigations, usually headed by handpicked judges, have functioned, in the main, as whitewashes. But because of the breadth and depth of the opposition it is facing, this government simply cannot afford to launch an inquiry with the legal powers to call official witnesses and obtain classified documents.

While—for public consumption—Howard and his ministers have promised to reply fully and “courteously” to Collins’ letter, they have done everything they can to vilify and intimidate him. Once again, they have resorted to bullying, character assassination and the selective use of secret documents—methods that have become characteristic of the Howard government. Despite the fact that Collins has specifically directed his criticisms toward the government, Howard accused him, along with everyone else calling for a royal commission, of casting a “generalised smear” over military intelligence officials.

Last week, Hill released a last-minute legal opinion that the government secretly requested from another military lawyer last December with a view to undermining Toohey’s report. Without interviewing a single witness, Colonel Richard Tracey accused Toohey of making unsubstantiated findings and exceeding his jurisdiction. But two days later, Hill was forced to admit the existence of, and make public, an earlier legal opinion, written by Colonel Roger Brown last September, endorsing Toohey’s conclusions as “firmly supported on the evidence”.
Collins had been shown none of the legal reports, and there is every indication that he would never have seen them if the Bulletin had not published the leaked Toohey report.

With the government’s position unravelling in the wake of Hill’s embarrassing admission, General Cosgrove, currently the Chief of the Defence Forces, was wheeled out to reject Collins’ charges as unfounded and damaging to the security services. His credibility was not helped by the fact that he wrote a glowing testimonial for Collins in 2000, describing him as “very intelligent, perceptive and quick” as well as “very honest, moral and loyal”.

Incensed by his treatment, Collins has refused to be silenced, defying orders from Cosgrove not to release a public statement last week. Collins said he was “dismayed” by Hill’s prejudicial release of reports on his case and demanded the release of all the documents used to investigate his accusations. Similarly, Toohey has spoken out this week, labelling the government’s treatment of his report as “yet another shabby, tawdry cover-up,” designed to “slur” his professional reputation.

The stand taken by Collins and Toohey is a sure sign that they have significant support within the military elite. This was confirmed by a series of further statements last week. Retired Major-General Mike Smith, a former deputy commander of the Timor intervention force, backed Collins’ charges and said the politicisation of the military and public service was worsening. Moreover, Australia should not have joined the Iraq invasion, which had made Australia an increased terrorist target, he said.

The head of the Australian Defence Association, retired army intelligence officer Neil James accused the DIO of refusing to tolerate dissenting views and spoke of “incredible concern in the defence force community” that the DIO had cut off information to forces on the ground in Timor. A senior former Defence Department adviser, Jane Errey, charged the government with dismissing her for refusing to write a briefing paper saying that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction. [See: Australian defence adviser sacked for refusing to write WMD lies]

Collins’ call for a royal commission was joined by the mother of Mervyn Jenkins, an Australian military intelligence attaché in Washington, who committed suicide in June 1999 after being threatened with serious criminal charges for handing sensitive Timor material to his US partners. Such exchanges of information were routine, but the Timor documents reported the Indonesian preparations for atrocities, which the Howard government did not want to divulge to anyone at that stage, not even Washington. Jenkins’ mother condemned the government for treating Collins in the same way it had treated her son.

Then came much-publicised details from a report by the Rand Corporation, an influential Pentagon-linked US thinktank, accusing the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) of “blatantly disregarding” threat assessments relating to the Bali bombings. Citing interviews with serving Australian Federal Police (AFP) officers, the Rand report also concluded that ASIO “deliberately withholds” information from the AFP, based on “its own idiosyncratic calculation of the national interest”.

These revelations and accusations provide just a glimpse of the acrimony that the government has created inside the state apparatus, particularly since the 2001 election campaign.
Facing almost certain defeat at that election, because of popular opposition to his free-market agenda, Howard resorted to lies and dirty tricks to crawl back into office. Leading government figures prevailed upon the army, navy, air force and SAS, as well as the military and civilian intelligence agencies and senior public servants, to line up behind a campaign of slanders against asylum seekers and whip up fears of terrorism in the wake of the September 11 attacks in the United States.

The Chief of the Defence Forces, Admiral Barrie and other senior naval commanders were required to back the government’s false claims that refugees had thrown their children overboard in an attempt to force authorities to allow them into Australia. Only after the election was it revealed that navy photographs were doctored and misleadingly labelled and that so-called intelligence material on the incident compiled by the Office of National Assessments (ONA) was based on nothing but media reports, which had been generated by the government’s own lies.

At a later parliamentary inquiry, Admiral Barrie was forced to retract his initial testimony after being humiliatingly contradicted by subordinates. It turned out that dozens of government and military personnel knew, within days of the incident, that children were not thrown off the boat. A former Admiral accused the government of a Goebbels-style Big Lie campaign, while other senior military figures accused Howard of misusing the navy for political purposes, destroying its credibility and creating profound mistrust within its ranks. Howard, however, continued to deny any wrongdoing, claiming the problem was simply one of “communication”.

Tensions reached a new height last month, in the wake of the defeat of the Aznar government in Spain, one of the few staunch supporters—together with Howard’s government—of the Bush administration’s war on Iraq. Howard and leading ministers denounced AFP Commissioner Mick Keelty for stating the obvious: that Australia’s participation in the Iraq war had made its population, like the Spanish people, a more likely terrorist target. Foreign Minister Downer accused Keelty of peddling Al Qaeda propaganda. General Cosgrove was ordered into the fray to declare his disagreement with Keelty.

Howard and Downer were later forced to beat an ignominious retreat, repeatedly stating their confidence in the police chief. Last week, Keelty revealed that he had been on the brink of resigning before Howard and Downer performed their backflip.

Behind the internecine warfare

The bitter rifts within the security apparatus and attacks on the government have become intertwined with deep-going conflicts within the entire political and corporate establishment over foreign policy and strategic orientation. With the war on Iraq becoming an unmitigated disaster, elements in ruling circles, such as former prime minister Malcolm Fraser, who have expressed reservations about Howard’s unconditional alignment with Washington, have latched onto the internal discontent.

The Bulletin’s editor-in-chief, Garry Linnell, wrote: “If, as Toohey has found, a ‘pro-Jakarta’ lobby exists with defence intelligence and shapes its reports to the government based on this bias, how certain can we be that the rest of the intelligence the government relies upon is also not subject to similar biases? A pattern is already evident. The so-called intelligence evidence relied upon by the United States, the United Kingdom and the Australia as justification for the war in Iraq lies in shreds.“

Linnell pointed out that Howard “has staked his personal future, and that of his government, on the promise of protecting Australia’s national security” and that “without a royal commission, that promise will sound hollow”. But with his political survival so bound up with the Bush administration and its “war on terror,” Howard cannot afford to have any serious probe into his government’s actual record.

Howard has sought to shelter behind an existing inquiry into the “performance of the intelligence agencies,” which was established following a parliamentary committee report on the lies used to justify the Iraq invasion. The inquiry is designed to be a whitewash—it is being conducted by Philip Flood, a former Australian ambassador to Indonesia, secretary of the Foreign Affairs Department and ONA chief, who was a central figure in the official pro-Jakarta policy during the 1990s.

The parliamentary report itself disclosed ONA and DIO material that demonstrated that the Howard government—closely following the line laid down by the Bush and Blair administrations—cynically orchestrated and exaggerated intelligence to claim that Iraq possessed dangerous stockpiles of chemical, biological and nuclear weapons. Nevertheless, the bipartisan parliamentary committee politically exonerated the government and shifted all responsibility onto the DIO and ONA.

Howard has emphasised that two veteran Labor politicians, former defence ministers Kim Beazley and Robert Ray, helped draft the parliamentary report. With Labor’s help, he hopes to divert the latest revelations in the same direction—that is, into an examination of alleged “intelligence failures” rather than the criminal policies of the government. Labor leader Mark Latham has demonstrated his readiness to cooperate by suggesting that the Flood inquiry be given royal commission powers to investigate the latest allegations.

The other parliamentary parties, the Australian Democrats and Greens have taken a similar stance, calling for a royal commission to investigate “intelligence failures”. Greens’ leader Bob Brown called for an inquiry “to find out not just what went wrong but how we restructure, re-equip, re-personnel the intelligence agencies so that they are able to cope with the new situation Australia finds itself in”.

As in 2001, this closing of the parliamentary ranks will only encourage the government to respond to its political crisis by ratcheting up the “war on terror” and stepping up its attacks on its political opponents.
See Also:Australian defence adviser sacked for refusing to write WMD lies


`The Greatest Strategic Disaster in U.S. History'

This article appears in full in the October 14, 2005 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.

`The Greatest Strategic Disaster in U.S. History'

by Michele Steinberg


The Administration's fanaticism, including Bush's Oct. 6 call for further wars against Syria and Iran, makes the intervention by the military against the Iraq War all the more urgent.

'Why Not Cut and Run?'

On Sept. 28, retired Lt. Gen. William Odom, the ex-head of the National Security Agency (NSA), joined Rep. Walter Jones (R-N.C.), Rep. Neil Abercrombie (D-Hi.), and other members of the House of Representatives, at a news conference in Washington, to support their bipartisan legislation to withdraw from Iraq.

Odom not only supported the legislation; he called the invasion of Iraq "the greatest strategic disaster in United States history." Odom added, "We need a broad coalition of Europeans and our allies in Asia to put things in order.... We cannot do that as long as we are in Iraq. The precondition for a serious and effective strategic engagement to stabilize this region requires withdrawal and admittance to others that we may have made an error."

But that was not all. On Oct. 3, General Odom wrote an article titled, "What's Wrong With Cutting and Running?" (See "If I were a journalist," he wrote, "I would list all the arguments that you hear against pulling U.S. troops out of Iraq, the horrible things that people say would happen, and then ask: Aren't they happening already? Would a pullout really make things worse? Maybe it would make things better."

Odom refutes in a devastating way, the arguments that the Administration usually puts forth as its only reason for "staying the course." For example: Leaving would "risk civil war," and would "encourage terrorists."

...There is a similar groundswell against the Iraq War, in Britain. On Oct. 2, the London Sunday Telegraph published a chilling article, citing British military historian Col. Tim Collins (ret.), who says that British forces have been decisively defeated in southern Iraq, and may soon be chased across the border into Iran.

Collins, described in the article as a respected officer whose "eve of battle address during the Iraq war has been praised as among the greatest in British military history," warned that the "incompetence and lack of direction" of the political leadership has created a situation in which "the danger is that we could face defeat in the field. We could be overwhelmed. The Army could be chased over the border into Iran." Asked how humiliating that would be for Britain, he answered, "It would be historic." He called on Prime Minister Tony Blair to "fall on his sword" for presiding over a "right rollicking cock-up."

These two military leaders are just the latest voices of warning. On Sept. 15, at an informal hearing called by Rep. Lynne Woolsey (D-Calif.), Gen. Joseph Hoar (USMC-ret.), and former Sen. Max Cleland (D-Ga.), a decorated Vietnam War vet, testified that not only is the situation in Iraq getting worse and worse, but the Army itself is "broken," and the United States is going bankrupt, paying for the no-win war.

After the four-hour hearing, in which about 30 members of Congress questioned Hoar, Cleland, and other expert witnesses, the Administration could be likened to Hitler in the bunker in the early part of 1945, when World War II was lost for the Nazis, but Hitler dreamed up ever wilder expansions of the war...

There is no longer any area where the U.S. military is in control.

The British have withdrawn from Basra, the largest city in the south, and cannot control the region.

Even worse, there is a likelihood, with the continuing threats by Cheney to attack Iran, that the Iraqi Shi'ites will launch their own insurgency against the United States, in the event of a U.S. and/or Israeli attack on Shi'ite Iran.

It is already an ugly civil war. U.S. Marines who recently returned from Anbar province in Western Iraq, say that the U.S. is facing a "widespread, hard-core, nationalist insurgency," which should be understood as analogous to the French resistance to the Nazi occupation.

...The brutality of the civil war—with the U.S. clearly involved in allowing pro-occupation gangs to carry out mass murders—is beginning to find its way into media reports. On Oct. 5, the website noted recent reports by CBS News and the Chicago Tribune, about Iraqi Shi'ite commandos, working for the new Iraq government, who have targetted Sunnis, terrorizing families in the middle of the night, and killing Sunni men on a mass scale...

The Shi'a forces involved in targetting of Sunnis are officially working for, and trained and equipped by the United States, in the name of stability.

Meltdown in the Washington Command

On Sept. 28, at a hearing of the Senate Armed Services Committee, all hell broke loose, when U.S. Army Gen. George Casey, Commander of the U.S. and coalition forces in Iraq, said that there is only one battalion of "fully capable" Iraqi troops...

According to media reports, and EIR's sources in the Washington intelligence community, there were high-level meetings at the White House that were a combination of damage control, and flight-forward planning for attacks on Syria, to be conducted in "hot pursuit" of "terrorists" who would be fleeing an American offensive in the western Anbar province of Iraq. U.S. military strikes against Syria, and the overthrow of Syrian President Bashar Assad, remains high on the agenda of Cheney and his neo-con cabal.

While no military action has been announced against Syria, as of Oct. 6, the speeches by Cheney and Bush indicate that they fully intend to expand the Iraq war to Syria and Iran...

There is no question that Bush and Cheney feel the walls of reality closing in on them, as the multiple criminal investigations are coming to a head, particularly the possible indictments of top White House personnel for the revenge leaking of the identity of covert CIA agent Valerie Plame Wilson, and the indictments of House Republican Majority Leader Tom DeLay.
But, feeling the political squeeze, Cheney and Bush, are planning new wars to get themselves a little "Lebensraum."


Israel could nuke USA and Europe? Interview with Vanunu

Mordechai Vanunu Interviewed
By Hesham Tillawi
Al-Jazeerah, October 21, 2005

TILLAWI Mordechai, there are a lot of nations that have nuclear weapons. What is it about Israel having them that makes you so nervous?

VANUNU Because Israel wants to use them, to cause genocide and holocaust on other innocent citizens. It has always been a part of Israel’s secret policy. And also by having them, Israel will use them as a threat to avoid making peace with the Arab world as well as imposing her policies on those peoples. As long as she has them, she will continue on in her policies of not making peace, of occupation and of neglecting the Palestinian suffering caused by the refugee camps that have existed for more than 50 years.

TILLAWI One of the Israeli professors said a few months ago that ‘we have the nuclear capability of hitting every major European city,’ is that true to your knowledge?

VANUNU Yes, it is true. They can bombard any city all over the world, and not only those in Europe but also those in the United States, and by this threat what they are doing is to send a secret message to any leader and to any government that they have the ability to use them aggressively and to blackmail them, to blackmail Europe and the United States, every where, in every state around the world. It was Europe and the United States who helped them get this power, and now that Israel has it, she is coming back and saying to them ‘We will not obey any orders that you give us. No international law, no international agreement, no UN resolutions,’ and all because of these atomic weapons tha! t they have.

TILLAWI Where do you live now Mordechai?

VANUNU Since my release in 2004 I am not allowed to leave the country, all this after serving 18 years. So I decided that I wanted to be someplace where I will not see the ugliness of Jewish society, so I decided to stay in East Jerusalem among Palestinians and among foreigners. Right now I am staying in the guesthouse of St. George’s Cathedral, the Anglican Church. I cannot leave Israel, so I am living amongst the Palestinians and under Israeli occupation, because East Jerusalem is part of the occupation since 1967.

TILLAWI Now, you also have converted from Judaism to Christianity, is that right?


TILLAWI Now, I have a question for you, and I do not want to put you on the spot, but two things happened in your life that are profound. The first is that, according to some people, you betrayed Israel and in their eyes you are considered a traitor, but that is not what I want to ask you about. What I do want to ask you is this: What is the process that went through your head twice in your life? One of them is when you decided to expose the nuclear capability of Israel, your own country, and the other one which is also profound was when you changed your religion to Christianity. Now, those two things are profound and I do not think that there are too many! people in the world who have two major shifts in their lives like these. What made Mordechai Vanunu betray his country and then change his religion?

VANUNU Yes, this is a very good question and very important. You are right, it is not usual to have a person come to these hard conclusions. As far as my conversion, it started at the very early age of 15 or 16. I was raised in the Jewish religion and in a Jewish family. Israel and Judaism were considered as one nation, one big family, one tribe. I began criticizing and rejecting Judaism over the point of view that these Jews are teaching injustice through their Judaism. In the same way that Jesus Christ also criticized Judaism 2,000 years ago, I was unwilling to accept what they teach, and later converted to the opposite of Judaism. The Jewish tribe teaches that there is only one Chosen people of God. They teach of their superiority, taking literally word-by-word the writings in the old bible. And I decided therefore that after 2,000 years these ideas were nonsense. There are 6 billion people around the world, and all of them are equal, all are part of the human race. There is no such thing as a super race. We should all respect and love each other, and that was the beginning of my rejecting Judaism and my accepting of Christianity, of following the teachings of Jesus Christ and of accepting humanity. I am not a religious man, I am not going to become a priest. I did all of this for my humanity and for my beliefs. So, I chose my own way and began criticizing the Jewish faith. Those who teach Judaism run the lives of those under them, telling them what they must do every hour of every day, issuing many orders about everything, from waking up in the morning to going to sleep, but at the same time they do not teach them to respect other human beings, to accept non-Jews and to believe ! that non-Jews are like them. They teach that only the Jews are the chosen people. So, this is Judaism, a collection of primitive traditions thousands of years old that have not changed. The world has changed in the last 2,000 years and the Jewish people need to accept and understand this change, and especially if they want a democratic country. You cannot have a state and run it as they did 2,000 years ago. They came to Palestine in the name of the Bible and in the name of their god and took this land that was promised to them thousands of years ago. In the name of this god, they took the land, expelled the people and gave them hard, cruel, barbaric lives for the last 60 years. This way of thinking, this faith cannot exist within this new age, and it was this that also led me to expose Israel’s nuclear secrets.

TILLAWI Mordechai, you have been living amongst the Palestinians for a while now. What do you think, are they the terrorists that we have all been hearing about?

VANUNU I have been living amongst the Palestinians now for 15 months, but I have been following the Palestinian situation now since the 1980’s. Now I am here living among them, watching them, meeting with them, eating with them, enjoying life with them and seeing how the Israelis have succeeded in portraying them all over the world as terrorists. But this is not true. They are very peaceful people and lovers of peace.

TILLAWI What do you think should happen? How do you think that this conflict should be settled?

VANUNU Well, if the Jewish people want a solution, it can happen only by one way, and this is by accepting the Palestinians and by treating them as equal human beings. If the Israelis want peace, then the proof that you want peace is by respecting the people of the other side and seeing them as equals. The Jews must stop seeing themselves as being part of a master race. The only solution is one state, one society where everyone has equal rights and have the same rights in all categories. If the Jews have the right of return based on what happened 2,000 years ago, then the Palestinians have the right of return after 50 years as well. With one state, there will be no more conflict over land and there will be no more enemies. Israel will the! n not need atomic weapons because she will learn to live in peace with her neighbors instead of trying to live as a racist supremacist state. The Israelis are not willing to accept this though because they want a Jewish state. Therefore, a secular, non-religious state is the only solution.

TILLAWI. Of course, Israel will not accept this option because of demographic concerns.

VANUNU Yes, that is true and has always been part of Israel’s plan. This has been the reason for Israel not accepting refugees and for isolating the Palestinians in places such as Gaza.

TILLAWI. What do you think of the Gaza withdrawal?

VANUNU The Gaza withdrawal was nothing but a big piece of propaganda trying to show how the Jews were being forced off their land. Of course, what they do not say is the fact that this land was Palestinian land and that it was taken from them by force. So the Zionists used this for brainwashing the people in the United States into thinking about Jewish suffering. But secretly the plan is to use this as a way of isolating 1.4 million Palestinians. The demographic issue is very strong in the mind of the Jewish people and so what they want to do is to eventually move all the Palestinian people into this very small area. All the while, the Sharon government continues to build more settlements in the West Bank.

TILLAWI Back in 1999, 35 members of Congress wrote a letter to President Clinton a concerning you. His response to that letter was “I share with you your concern over Vanunu’s plight and over Israel’s nuclear program. We have repeatedly urged Israel to adhere to the treaty and to accept comprehensive international atomic energy safeguards and inspections.” To your knowledge, have the Israeli nuclear sites ever been inspected by an international nuclear agency?

VANUNU No, it has never opened its program to international inspections.

TILLAWI So, why are we after Iran then to open its doors to inspections, but no one is asking Israel to do the same? Why is that?

VANUNU This is a very strange situation that has been developed and accepted by the Western states since the 1960’s. It goes back about 40 years. My view is that Europe and America are and have been under a long-term agenda of blackmail by the Israelis. In the first case, the Israelis constantly bring up the Holocaust and what happened to the Jews during WWII, blaming the West for it and then using this as the justification for possessing nuclear weapons as a way of preventing this from ever happening again.

TILLAWI. Mordechai, do you know how many Atomic Weapons they possess?

VANUNU At the time that I first revealed Israel’s nuclear weapons program, they had more than 200 atomic weapons and were able to produce every year about 40 kilograms of plutonium. This amount can be used in making 10 atomic weapons each year. What that means is that since 1986 they were able to make another 200.

TILLAWI In your opinion, against whom do the Israelis plan to use these weapons?

VANUNU Their target has always been the Arab states.

TILLAWI How real do you think this threat really is?

VANUNU It is very, very real. Very, very close. It’s easy. It’s simple. All that they need is one crazy leader in the government. They may use it one day to make the world see that they are very powerful and thus force the world to let them continue on with their racist apartheid state for the Jewish people while not accepting any other solutions and to continue rejecting any real solutions for these problems involving the Palestinian people.


Jack Straw - agent of MI5? Jack Straw and Harold Wilson; Harriet Harman...


David Shayler has suggested that Tony Blair was in CND in order to spy on it for MI5.

Shayler has previously claimed that MI5 kept an eye on Blair's 'right hand man', Peter Mandelson, UK Foreign Secretary Jack Straw and Blair minister Harriet Harman.

Harman was at one time legal director of the National Council for Civil Liberties. Was Harman spying on the National Council for Civil Liberties?

Jack Straw was President of the National Union of Students between 1969 and 1971. Was he spying on students?

The MI5 file of Peter Mandelson is said to contain photographs of membership cards for the Young Communist League and the Communist Party of Great Britain which he joined in 1972. Was Mandelson spying on the Communist Party?

Straw and Mandelson are reported to be Jewish.


Twilight wrote at Indymedia, 17 October 2005:

In his youth, Straw famously (pretended to) campaign against the butcher Pinochet.

When a minister, Straw personally arranged Pinochet's famous visit to the UK, and protected him from prosecution and extradition...

Laughably, when Straw first rose to significant power, a psy-ops campaign was run in the mass media telling how MI5 had monitored Straw when younger. Boy, nothing convinces more than MI5 telling me that a named individual couldn't have been working for them because they were spying on him, snigger snigger. However, why pick on Straw. MOST significant student leaders will have regular contact with the security services. Most of the key leaders of public pressure groups are agents too...

the CLOWN, PUPPET, STOOGE, BLIAR campaigns are ESSENTIAL to distract people from Blair's success in taking over EVERY power structure in the UK.

The magician only fools people if his act of MISDIRECTION works. How often are YOU misdirected by what you read or hear about Blair in the papers, or on TV. A few carefully placed lies, and a whole nation is wasting their time discussing those lies. What is it now? Three post Xmas campaigns telling people that Gordon Brown would be replacing Blair that coming year. I swear, Blair could run the same misdirection TEN years in a row, and STILL expect to tie up the majority of political discussion on that same false-flag.


Private Eye's greatest days were in the 1970's when they tried to find out whether or not the Prime Minister was a spy for Israel (or the KGB.)

Harold Wilson was President of the Board of Trade (a government minister) from 1947-51.

The few people who could get permission from the Board of Trade to import heavily rationed raw materials or finished goods were in a good position to become vastly rich.

Among the lucky few who got licenses were Montague Meyer, Joe Kagan and Rudy Sternberg.

Kagan and Sternberg later became peers.

Meyer gave Wilson a consultancy which took him on frequent trips to Moscow and Eastern Europe.

After the 'mysterious' death of Hugh Gaitskell, Wilson became Labour leader and eventually Prime Minister.

Harold Wilson's 'private office' was funded in secret by a wealthy group which included Lord Goodman, Sir Samuel Fisher, and Rudy Sternberg.

In the 1970's, Private Eye began to receive information of a possible link between Wilson and the Israeli secret service and the KGB.

Much of this information may have come from people within MI5.

In connection with alleged plots, the names of various people were handed to Private Eye.

Labour MP Ian Mikardo had at one time partnered Leslie Paisner in a business that traded with East Germany.Mikardo's pair in the House of Commons was Barnaby Drayson who worked for Rudy Sternberg, as did Wilfred Owen MP who had resigned after being revealed as a spy for Czechoslovakia.

Montague Meyer, it turned out, was the man who had bought up much of the timber felled in Tanganyika during Labour's ill-fated groundnut scheme.

Then there was Labour MP Edward Short 'who had been in the habit of receiving bundles of banknotes from T Dan Smith', the city boss of Newcastle and one time partner of Eric Levine.

Kagan was a frequent visitor to Downing Street. He was also on friendly terms with the station chief of the Russian KGB. After being questioneded by the police about tax and currency offences he eventually 'fled' to Israel, where perhaps his real allegiance lay.

Sir Rudy Sternberg was also under investigation by the security services.


17 October, 2002 - Jack Straw

The BBC's Newsnight had an item on Jack Straw, UK Foreign Secretary.

In particular what precisely did he do for the then Prime Minister, Harold Wilson, twenty five years ago?

Newsnight has obtained a tape recording in which Mr Wilson says that if what he'd been up to got out, Jack Straw thought he'd be finished. Michael Crick reported.

MICHAEL CRICK:The late '70's were an extraordinary time in British politics, with the former Prime Minister Harold Wilson alleging MI5 had plotted to undermine him. A shot dog on Dartmoor, and the Liberal leader Jeremy Thorpe accused of attempted murder. Amidst all this, there's growing mystery about the role played by a former student leader turned ministerial adviser Jack Straw, especially now it's emerged Wilson tried to keep Straw's name out of the headlines.

HAROLD WILSON:Look, I Saw Jack Straw, he's very worried if he were mentioned in this context, he thinks he'll be finished.

CRICK:That recording of Harold Wilson was unearthed a few days ago here at the Kent home of the investigative journalist Barry Penrose, who during the mid 1970's spent some time investigating Harold Wilson and allegations of MI5 plots against him. But today, almost 30 years on, it raises serious questions about the behaviour of one of our senior politicians. One night in May 1976, five weeks after Harold Wilson resigned as PM, Barrie Penrose and a BBC colleague Roger Courtiour received an astonishing summons to go see him. The allegations Wilson made to them and the journalists' subsequent investigations would throw up a huge archive of papers and tapes, which have lain neglected and almost forgotten until now. Wilson's meeting with the two young reporters took place at his Westminster home, 5 Lord North Street, where he'd lived as Prime Minister instead of in Downing Street.

BARRIE PENROSE:We arrived at Lord North Street and Wilson opened the door and said, "Come inside. I've got something important to tell you." I'd not met Wilson before so we sat down and he gave us a drink. He said, "Democracy's at risk. Right wing elements in MI5 have been trying to topple me, smear me." I said, "What do you mean?" He said, "What you should be doing is looking at, for example, Norman Scott." Norman Scott was a male model who, in the public imagination, became almost entwined with Jeremy Thorpe the Liberal Leader. What he said was the way to expose the MI5 plot could be done by looking at Norman Scott's social security files, some of which had gone missing, so off we went and did his bidding.

CRICK:By the mid-70s, Jeremy Thorpe was leading a Liberal revival as his party reached six million votes and came close to holding the balance of power. But behind the scenes, details of his homosexual affair with Norman Scott were leaking out, partly from clues in Scott's social security records. In pursuing Wilson's concerns over the missing Scott files, Barrie Penrose went to the home of an adviser to the former Social Services Secretary, Barbara Castle.

PENROSE:Harold Wilson said, "Go see Jack Straw. He'll tell you everything about the missing files and Norman Scott", and so we did, and we came here and banged on the door. Jack Straw came to the door came out there. There he was, I remember, wearing cords and sandals. He looked uneasy but he invited us inside, so we went upstairs to the first room there. We sat down but he didn't and paced the room and then we said to him, "What can you tell us about a missing file belonging to Norman Scott?" And he said, "I know nothing about a missing file." He clearly did. His face showed that. He was distraught. We pressed the point, "What do you know about the missing file?" He said, "I know about it, but I can't tell you because of the Official Secrets Act."

CRICK:Today, a senior minister and no longer in sandals, Jack Straw admits he did read Norman Scott's social security file, but only on the orders of Harold Wilson and Barbara Castle. Castle said in her diary that Wilson wanted Straw to find out whether Norman Scott was part of a conspiracy against Jeremy Thorpe. But Straw was clearly nervous about the enquiries by Barrie Penrose and Roger Courtiour, perhaps because MI5 had been investigating who leaked details of Scott's file to the press, though no-one suggests it was Straw. By the end of 1976, Straw seemed even more worried, having been fingerprinted by the police in a second enquiry over a leak on Child Benefit, and who leaked sensitive Cabinet papers. Harold Wilson telephoned, which was unusual because he'd said, "Don't use the phones. They're all bugged by MI5". Well I pressed the button on my tape and this is what he said it was about Jack Straw.

HAROLD WILSON:Look, I saw Jack Straw. He's very worried. His name should not appear. All you need to say is that the Prime Minister, or Harold Wilson, or however you like to describe me, called for, you know, asked for it to be done. The point is that Jack is so much under suspicion for the Child Benefit leak. Everybody thinks he did it, and if it were mention in the context, even thought it were under Prime Ministerial direction, he thinks he'll be finished.

CRICK:They did keep Straw's name out of it and he flourished. Foreign Secretary Straw says he has no recollection of talking to Wilson about the matter. Straw's lawyer says he did nothing improper in examining the Scott file and his involvement was innocent. A rather different story is told by Joe Haines, the Alastair Campbell of Wilson's government. In a forthcoming book, he says Wilson began worrying about Jeremy Thorpe the day after the February 1974 election and whether he'd back the Tory Leader Edward Heath in an anti-Labour coalition. As the Liberal leader went to see Heath in Downing Street, Wilson spoke of exposing Thorpe's homosexuality to wreck any deal, but the talks fell through anyway. Haines says even after that, Wilson wanted Jack Straw to find ammunition from Scott's social security files to stop any future talk of Thorpe backing Heath.

JOE HAINES:The only reason he wanted those files was if there was an attempt to revive the Heath-Thorpe coalition, then he'd have had the weapon in his hand to destroy it, because Thorpe's alliance with Norman Scott was unknown, and the public didn't take such a relaxed attitude towards homosexual affairs as they might do today.

CRICK:Straw says it's "fantasy" that he read Scott's files to smear Thorpe. But whatever the motivation, a political adviser examining someone's social security records is highly unorthodox, says the Tory who opposed Barbara Castle at the time.

LORD FOWLER:If it was for party political purposes, I don't think there would be a precedent for that.

CRICK:Do you think it was unacceptable behaviour?

FOWLER:If it was for party political purposes, yes, of course it is. I was Social Security Secretary for six years. I don't think anything like that took place in that time, and I think had we been presented with such a request, which we were not, we would have acceded to it. That's the case that has to be answered either by Mr Straw or by other people.

HAINES:It's improper. It has to be. These are private records held by a Government department for one purpose:social security benefits, and its being used for a political purpose. It would be equally wrong to take somebody's income tax papers for a political purpose.

CRICK:What of the man whose files seem to have been leaked, gone missing and undergone close scrutiny by a future Foreign Secretary? I went down to see Norman Scott at his house on the edge of Dartmoor, where he expressed bewilderment and anger at the confirmation of Jack Straw's involvement.

NORMAN SCOTT:I'm appalled. I can't understand why my files should have been taken. I have taken legal action and my solicitor has presented it all to the barrister who is trying to work out my best course of action, because it shouldn't be allowed.

CRICK:Did he have permission to look at your file?

SCOTT:Absolutely no. I didn't know the man. I gave no permission.

CRICK:I then played Scott the recording of that familiar Yorkshire voice begging Barrie Penrose to keep Jack Straw's name out of it.

WILSON:'I saw Jack Straw. He is very worried.'

CRICK:We've just played you the tape of Harold Wilson talking to the journalist Barrie Penrose. What do you make of that tape?

SCOTT:Extraordinary that the Prime Minister of the day should've asked a minor civil servant to do this, and then the minor civil servant is concerned that he's taken the file. It's weird.

CRICK:And clearly Mr Straw was rather worried that his name might get out having done this.

SCOTT:Absolutely, absolutely, absolutely. It just beggars belief.

CRICK:Unless Norman Scott's lawyers decide it's worth going to court, the strange tale of Jack Straw and Scott's social security files is likely to be remain a historical mystery. Mr Straw's office told us today he's giving no interviews on this. He doesn't believe confidentiality rules were broken, and in any case, he says, responsibility lay not with him, but with his bosses at the time.

This transcript was produced from the teletext subtitles that are generated live for Newsnight.


Friday, October 21, 2005

Cocaine; Israelis; President Uribe...


Estonian police confiscate 43 kilos of cocaine from five Israelis

By Haaretz Service

'Estonian police announced Thursday they have detained five Israelis in the capital city of Tallinn, on charges of smuggling 43 kilos of top-grade Peruvian cocaine into the former Soviet republic, the Russian news agency Interfax reported.'

"It is termed The Cocaine Triangle.

"Its sides are: Colombian drug barons, Israeli-Jewish money launderers and Jewish-Russian mafiosi.

"The Colombians funnel the money, the Israelis launder it, the Russian mafiosi (who have recently overrun New York in droves) provide the security and the muscle."

Russian Organized Crime.

PBS/Center for Strategic International Studies (CSIS) Task Force Report (1997)

"To date, U.S. Iaw enforcement officials have established a clear relationship between ROC [Russian Organized Crime] groups and La Cosa Nostra (LCN), the Italian-American criminal network in the United States ... Cooperative efforts between ROC groups and the Colombian drug cartels are centered in Miami..."

The Most Dangerous Mobster in the World.

Village Voice [New York], May 20-26, 1998

"The enigmatic leader of the [Russian] Red Mafia is a 52-year-old Ukrainian-born Jew named Semion Mogilevich. He is a shadowy figure known as the ''Brainy Don''--he holds an economics degree from the University of Lvov--and until now, he has never been exposed by the media.

"But the Voice has obtained hundreds of pages of classified FBI and Israeli intelligence documents from August 1996, and these documents--as well as recent interviews with a key criminal associate and with dozens of law enforcement sources here and abroad--describe him as someone who has become a grave threat to the stability of Israel and Eastern Europe ...

"The FBI and Israeli intelligence assert that he traffics in nuclear materials, drugs, prostitutes, precious gems, and stolen art.

"His contract hit squads operate in the U.S. and Europe. He controls everything that goes in and out of Moscow's Sheremetyevo International Airport, a ''smugglers' paradise,'' says [Monya] Elson. Mogilevich bought a bankrupt airline in a former Central Asian Soviet republic for millions of dollars in cash so he could haul heroin out of the Golden Triangle.

"Most worrisome to U.S. authorities is Mogilevich's apparently legal purchase of virtually the entire Hungarian armaments industry, jeopardizing regional security, NATO, and the war against terrorism."

Two Israelis Arrested in Largest Drug Bust in NYC History.

Jerusalem Post, July 20, 2001"Two Israeli citizens were arrested Tuesday night in Manhattan on drug possession charges after police seized more than a million Ecstasy tablets, the largest drug bust in New York City history."

Israel's Other Export. Moment, August-September 2001.

According to a U.S. State Department White Paper on Global Narcotics, issued in 1998, Israel is 'no longer just a user nation, but like Colombia, Thailand and Pakistan, it has also now become a trafficking power.'

The following is extracted from an article by Alex Constantine:


By Alex Constantine

...A report written in 1991 at the Pentagon - declassified in July2004 by the National Security Archives in Washington - lists 104 "more important Colombian narco-terrorists..."

Pablo Escobar is on the list. Colombian President Alvaro Uribe is also on it.

Uribe, according to the document, is a "Colombian politician and senator dedicated to collaboration with the Medellin cartel at high governmentlevels." He was "linked to a business involved in narcotics activities in the U.S."

Adnan Khashoggi's name was on... the list...

Richard Perle, assistant secretary of defense under Bush, was a business partner of Khashoggi's at TriReme Corp.


Former UK Labour Party leader John Smith was linked to the security services? Was Mandelson spying on the Communist Party?


Was former Labour Party leader John Smith linked to the security services?

Some people in the intelligence community claim that a firm called Hakluyt was started by MI6 officers to carry out "deniable" operations.

Maurice Chittenden and Nicholas Rufford, in The Sunday Times, 19 June 2001, wrote about Hakluyt and its links to the spy services.

Baroness Smith, the widow of John Smith, the late Labour leader, was a director of Hakluyt.



Extract from a speech to the Labour Reform/Chartist Conference July 2002 by Robin Ramsay:

When John Smith became leader of the Labour Party he was a member of the steering committee of the Bilderberg Group: the steering committee, the inner core. He got Gordon Brown invited to the 1991 meeting, incidentally...

Who was John Smith? Genial, whiskey-drinking Scots lawyer from the traditional Labour right. But also life-long chums with a senior MI6 officer, now Baroness Ramsay. Lady Smith, his widow, is now on the board of an MI6 front company.

He took on an advisor - Ed Balls, a Financial Times leader writer - an ideologist for globalisation, in effect - who learned some of his economics at Harvard . Like other Labour personnel, including Yvette Cooper MP, whom Balls later married, and David Miliband, head of Blair's policy unit, both now junior ministers, Balls had spent a year in America as a Kennedy Scholar.

Virtually all of the new Labour people have some connection to America and American money...

Tony Blair took the US government's free tour of the States in 1986 andtold his hosts that while officially a member of CND he supported the nuclear deterrent. He had joined the Labour Friends of Israel in 1983 when he got elected. While Shadow Home Secretary in 1994 Tony Blair took an Israeli government freebie holiday in Israel. On his return the number two at the Israeli embassy in London introduced him to Michael Levy - now Lord Levy - one of the top fund-raisers for Jewish charities.



At Cryptone, Gordon Logan wrote:

I was disturbed to read some weeks ago that the late John Smith’s widow had been given a job with Hakluyt. A smoking gun if ever there was one. Hakluyt is an MI6 company, and it is difficult not to conclude that Mrs Smith was placed there for purposes of surveillance. There was speculation after John’s death that he had been poisoned. The Americans had been cultivating Blair, Mandelson and Brown since the eighties, and Blair was too promising, and manipulable, for them to pass up. Meta Ramsey must have ‘failed’ John


Was Peter Mandelson used by the security services to spy on the Communist Party?

"Peter Mandelson began political life as a member of the Communist Party, soon "seeing the light" and instead getting involved with the CIA/MI6-financed Socialist International youth wing and the Labour Party, through which he rose in parallel with his experience working at London Weekend Television with other A-list regulars like John Birt and Michael Maclay, now public mouthpiece of Hakluyt, the private sector spook outfit run by a bunch of "ex" MI6 types including the widow of ex-Labour leader John Smith.

"This sort of background and connections makes Mandelson very useful in the sort of corridors-and-alleyways diplomacy and networking that is the real substance of international relations and intelligence gathering. [....] If Mandelson is indeed the suspect, then the damage this could cause may fatally wound Blair."


Blunkett - who is he working for?


So, Blair may work for MI5?

The Bristol Evening Post, 13 September 2005: "Mr Shayler... alleged that Tony Blair worked for MI5 before he became Labour leader."

Robin Ramsay in 1996, , suggested that there could be links between the security services and people such as Mandelson, Clarke and Blair adviser Jonathan Powell.

Peter Hain?,3605,1579082,00.html According to The Guardian, 27 September 2005, newly released documents show how Special Branch infiltrated the Anti-Apartheid Movement. Who were the infiltrators? Peter Hain, was a prominent anti-apartheid campaigner.

What about Blunkett? Who is he really working for?
Mark Barnsley, at, 16th December 2004 wrote:

I first met David Blunkett in 1974, and later suffered under him when he was leader of Sheffield City Council, and neither his dishonesty, nor his corruption, nor his right-wing views are recently acquired....

In the 1980’s Sheffield City Council may have had a publicity machine worthy of Stalin’s Russia, but any talk of ‘socialism’ was never more than empty rhetoric for Blunkett and his pals. Look beyond the publicity and their track record shows that.

Under Blunkett, more than half of the council’s own 32,000 employees earned basic pay below TUC guidelines, and 10,000 of them were paid less than the Council of Europe ‘decency threshold’. Women workers got a particularly bad deal, earning far less than their male colleagues, and getting fewer promotions. There was also evidence of racial discrimination, with only 1% of council employees being black, a quarter of what it should have been, and rumours of a ‘colour bar’ in the Town Hall’s heavily subsidised restaurant, where no black person had ever been employed.

While lowly council workers got a raw deal there were plenty of jobs and high salaries for the Labour Party faithful. Irrespective of their true politics, careerists from all over the country flocked to Sheffield and joined up. Sheffield didn’t need freemasonry, we had the Labour Party. Usually the jobs doled out to the boys and girls were in social or youth work, Sheffield had more social-workers per head of population than any other place on the planet. In special cases though, a job would be invented, such as the creation of a highly-paid ‘Peace Officer’ role for one Blunkett crony.

Blunkett presided over a huge homeless problem in Sheffield, while massive numbers of council-owned properties lay empty for years, and sometimes for decades. Early in 1983 ‘Peace City’ was somewhat embarrassed to find that a group of young peaceniks had squatted one long-empty council-owned building and turned it into a ‘peace centre’. In response, Blunkett’s pal Roger Barton, then Chairman of the ‘Nuclear Free Zones Committee’, personally went round and cut off the electricity to the building. Blunkett however, faithfully promised the young pacifists that they would not be evicted, a promise he quickly broke.

Another embarrassment for the Blunkettgrad ‘Nuclear Free Zone’ was when a British Rail guard blew the whistle on the transportation of nuclear waste through the area, a fact the council had tried hard to keep quiet.

As homeless figures in the city continued to soar, other long-unused council-owned properties were occupied. The council’s response was always swift and ruthless. Facing immediate eviction one group of squatters wrote to Blunkett personally to ask for a stay of eviction while they found somewhere else to live. With typical arrogance Blunkett replied, “It would seem to me that anarchy can hardly expect reasoned and structured responses within the system which is being attacked.” After the eviction the building stayed empty for several more years.

Blunkett’s administration also waged a long and bitter war against travellers, even evicting them in the middle of a TB epidemic. The treatment of Sheffield travellers led to a perinatal mortality rate of nearly 50%.

Blunkett and his cohorts constantly railed in public about the corruption of Tory politicians in Whitehall, while Sheffield City Council junkets were legendary and almost every night the Town Hall hosted a lavish function or banquet for some group of councillors or another. Some friends of mine once went to visit Blunkett in his Town Hall office in 1983. Walking in unexpected they witnessed a huge feast laid out, this was Blunkett’s elevenses.

A big part of maintaining the illusion necessary to running Blunkettgrad was the notion of ‘squaring up to Thatcher’, so from time to time various ‘stands’ were made, with Blunkett & co promising to ‘stand firm’ against the Tories on various issues. Things were made easier by the fact that to a very large extent the Council ‘owned’ the unions, the tenants associations, the peace groups, and just about every political front, tendency, and organisation operating in the city.

One Blunkett ‘stand’ was over ‘rate-capping’, when Sheffield and several other Labour council’s refused to set ‘a Tory rate’. How Blunkett and his pals puffed and panted about this one, before crumbling at the very first opportunity. The discovery of the ‘Tory’ rate demands already typed-up and hidden in Blunkett’s office said a lot about his personal integrity. The inside word at the time was that Blunkett had been instructed to back down personally by Labour leader Neil Kinnock, who was then waging a war against Militant Tendency, particularly in Liverpool where they controlled the anti-rate capping council. Blunkett’s promised reward was the advancement of his cherished political career. He was elected as MP for Brightside, one of the most solid Labour seats in the country, at the next General Election.

Another ‘stand’ was against bus-fare increases. The city’s famously low fares had actually begun to increase a few years earlier, but in 1986 Thatcher’s deregulation of public transport threatened to send them spiralling. After more hot-air Blunkett again capitulated, and as always he aimed to crush any uncontrolled dissent ruthlessly. As a member of a group opposed to the fare increases I was sent to prison for putting up a poster advising passengers not to pay. I wasn’t prosecuted by the police, I hadn’t committed a criminal offence, but by the Labour council, for not having planning permission.

As home secretary Blunkett’s abuses of human rights and civil liberties have been staggering. He has introduced internment without trial for suspected foreign terrorists, is introducing military camps for children, and barely a day goes by without him dreaming up another crackpot neo-fascist scheme to attack civil liberties, criminalize working-class communities, and put more and more people behind bars. Under Blunkett the British prison population has risen to more than 75,000. Held in appalling conditions, which Blunkett has consistently ignored, growing numbers of these prisoners are driven to suicide, slashing open their veins with slivers of glass or razor-blade, hanging themselves from heating pipes only inches above the floor, or choking on their own vomit through swallowing pills. Callously, Blunkett has refused to meet the mothers of some of the young women driven to these acts of desperation, while his only comment on prison suicides has been to quip that he was inclined to open a bottle of champagne after Harold Shipman killed himself.

Blunkett has long had a vicious tongue, and as his former cabinet colleagues have witnessed recently, he is not slow to use it. He once famously accused single mothers of deliberately getting pregnant to jump the council housing queue. There was no basis for this accusation whatsoever, but these were young working-class girls, who might need a helping hand, and perhaps a bit of advice on contraception. Not rich, already married, right-wingers who didn’t need his sleazy favours (and who might also now be reconsidering the issue of birth-control.)

David Blunkett sought to hide his corruption by playing the ‘my private life is my own’ card he is trying to deny the rest of us. The man who has consistently assured us, in relation to ID cards, that if ‘we have nothing to hide, we have nothing to worry about’ has come unstuck, and those familiar with his ‘computer-like’ mind are probably taking his recent bad memory with a pinch of salt.

Blunkett’s assistance with passport and visa applications on behalf of his rich former mistress sits hypocritically with the hard-line stance he has taken with those fleeing war and torture abroad. This is the man who told Kosovan and Afghani refugees to “get back home”.

And without wanting to twist the knife too much, his current fixation with acquiring a family, even if it’s somebody else’s, sits uneasily with his past history. The day after his election as an MP, Blunkett announced he was leaving his wife and children in Sheffield and moving in with his ‘research assistant’ in London. His marriage may, as he has recently said, been “a loveless relationship”, but he had found it politically expedient to hide that fact for a long time, and he’s now finding out that middle-class women don’t disappear into the background quite so quickly or so conveniently.

Just like Thatcher before him, the only person David Blunkett is able to shed tears for is himself, snivelling that he doesn’t feel sorry for himself and that he’ll “try to have something of a Christmas”, he sounds like Albert Steptoe. Whatever happens to Blunkett, and unfortunately we may not have seen the last of him, he’s sure to have a better festive season than the families of the record 93 British prisoners who have killed themselves so far this year, those locked up without trial in prisons or detention centres, or the vast number of other victims of his reign as home secretary. Shed no tears for Blunkett, he can shed them himself.

Mark Barnsley16th December 2004

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