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Kosovo's natural resources

  • 2-23-08: Kosovo Update

    FBI whistle-blower Sibel Edmonds

    U S supports terrorist state

    "THE SCOOP for May 31, 1999 [by Bob Harris]

    The Scoop - http://www.bobharris.com/...

    The new issue of Counterpunch magazine reports that, according to a Pentagon procurement auditor, many of America's air-launched Cruise missiles have embedded chips subject to potential Y2K guidance problems.

    Conveniently, however, over 200 have been fired into Yugoslavia, and another 90 have dropped into Iraq.

    End of problem.

    (Counterpunch is online at http://www.counterpunch.org, although unfortunately the website often lags the print edition by a couple of weeks.)

    Counterpunch also notes that the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) war crimes verification team, which in January with great fanfare accused the Serbs of committing massacres of Albanian peasants, was led by none other than William Walker, former U.S. Ambassor to El Salvador in the late 1980s.

    Good God. Something is really wrong here. A little history:

    When the U.S.-backed Salvadoran High Command used paramilitary forces to kill civilian opponents, Walker was notorious for looking the other way.

    In 1989, when Salvadoran soldiers massacred six Jesuit priests, their housekeeper, and her daughter, this was Ambassador Walker's response:

    "Management control problems can exist in these kinds of situations."

    Then again, that's pretty much exactly what NATO says about their civilian casualties ...

    Top -- Home

    So let's ask: as to natural resources, is there anything worth fighting over in Kosovo?

    Yup.

    In the heart of Kosovo, just a short drive from the capital of Pristina, lies Yugoslavia's state-owned Trepca mining complex, called by the New York Times (July 8, 1998) "a war's glittering prize... the most valuable piece of real estate in the Balkans... worth at least $5 billion" thanks to its rich deposits of lead, zinc, cadmium, gold, and silver.

    Impressive. The article also mentions, merely in passing, 17 billion tons of coal reserves.

    To put that number in perspective, only 58 billion tons of coal have been mined in the U.S. -- [ever]. At current consumption rates, 17 billion tons of coal would be roughly as much as the United States uses in 20 years.

    How much is that 17 billion tons of coal worth? I'm suddenly damn curious.

    Last October [1998], Atlantic-Richfield paid the U.S. government 38 cents a ton for an undeveloped lode in Wyoming. That number might be a low measure of actual value, since the government notoriously gives natural resource companies in many industries favorable, below-market terms. I'll do more research and follow up on this in coming weeks.

    Data on the extent of Trepca's current coal production is hard to find, but if the coal mines are already operational, development costs would be substantially lower.

    In addition, U.S. Bureau of Mines data indicates that payroll and taxes account for a third of mining costs in the U.S. Since those costs would be much lower in what Wall Street calls an "emerging market," the value of the coal in Trepca would be boosted by, conservatively, another twenty percent.

    At a very rough guess of 60 cents per ton, the coal mines would be worth about ten billion dollars. Which means that the Trepca mining complex, alone, is worth, conservatively, fifteen billion dollars.

    And even that number might be way low.

    The Bureau of Mines estimate I found pegs the nominal cost per ton of underground mining at a little under 30 dollars. In the real world, the figure seems to come in at roughly 25 bucks. Again, discounting tax and labor costs in eastern Europe, the cost of production would probably be even lower. Instead, however, let's play it conservative and call the cost of production a full $30 per ton.

    The sale price for a ton of coal seems to vary widely, according to its composition and market conditions, but over the last few years, a rough average for the going rate seems to be about $36 a ton.

    Which means this: unless I've screwed up somewhere here, and God knows that's possible, there's over $100 billion sitting in a hole in the ground in Kosovo. Not even counting other, smaller operations in the region.

    Whoa.

    (Until somebody else who knows a lot more about mining runs all these numbers, I'll hold off on drawing any conclusions. If I've made a mistake, please email me at bob@bobharris.com and I'll eagerly publish more accurate figures.)

    In any case, the question does present itself:

    Is it possible that what oil was to the Gulf War, coal and precious metals are to Kosovo?

    Notably, while NATO has bombed machine plants, pharmaceutical factories, television stations, airports, electrical stations, bridges, tobacco factories, prisons, car factories, textile plants, wood mills, and even a shock absorber manufacturer, there is no report I can find that the Trepca facility has suffered even a scratch.

    Meanwhile, American media has been almost completely silent about the Trepca mines, or any of Kosovo's natural resources, for that matter. The Trepca complex hasn't been mentioned in the Washington Post even once ...

    In the weeks before the bombings began, NATO presented both the KLA and the Milosevic government a proposed accord which has come to be called the Rambouillet (pronounced, weirdly enough, like "Rambo-yay") agreement ...

    I've placed the full agreement at http://www.bobharris.com, along with a convenient copy of Appendix B, which contains most of the stuff Belgrade rejected. Judge for yourself ...

    So what's in this Rambouillet deal, anyway? Here's the Cliffs Notes version:

    The agreement begins with a group hug preamble and a "Framework" which elaborates the need for everybody to stop shooting and play nice. The right noises are all made. Cool so far.

    From there, the main body of the agreement begins with essentially a shopping list of political goals that have never been in serious dispute, to wit:

    Chapter 1 is a constitution for Kosovo.

    Chapter 2 is about civilian law enforcement and criminal justice.

    Chapter 3 is about holding elections.

    All is still good. But then things get interesting.

    Chapter 4, on economic issues, starts out with this blunt assertion as its very first sentence: "The economy of Kosovo shall function in accordance with free market principles."

    Whuh?

    That's nice and all, but why does NATO need to specify the Kosovar economic system, of all things, so early in the agreement, if their only interest is in returning refugees to their homes?

    There hasn't been a single word yet about the transport of displaced persons, expediting of food, clothing, medicine, and other assistance, finding of the missing, economic reconstruction, adjudication of war crimes claims, or any of the other stuff the U.S. and NATO claim to be so concerned with. Just this: "The economy of Kosovo shall function in accordance with free market principles."

    That means stuff like the Trepca mines and other mineral resources in Kosovo will inevitably be privatized while under NATO control. And the wealthy investors who front the cash and make the profits won't be coming from anywhere in Yugoslavia.

    Article 2 confirms the point. Section 1: "The Parties agree to reallocate ownership and resources in accordance insofar as possible with the distribution of powers and responsibilities set forth in this Agreement, in the following areas:

    (a) government-owned assets (including educational institutions, hospitals, natural resources, and production facilities)..."

    Couple that with Section 2: "The Parties agree to the creation of a Claim Settlement Commission (CSC) to resolve all disputes...

    (a) The CSC shall consist of three experts designated by Kosovo, three experts designated jointly by the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the Republic of Serbia, and three independent experts designated by the CIM."

    Aha. The Kosovo protectorate government and its NATO protectors receive 6 out of 9 votes over control of Kosovo's resources.

    Hmm. Maybe there really are a hundred billion reasons for the West to care about Kosovo.

    Still not a single word yet about all those hungry Albanians ...

    Tomorrow, Monday the 31st, is Memorial Day [5-31-99].

    We're supposed to remember America's veterans.

    OK. And let's do it right. Let's remember the ones who need us most.

    Vietnam veterans account for 35% of America's homeless population. The National Coalition for Homeless Veterans in Washington estimates that over 270,000 Vietnam veterans are homeless. Roughly three-quarters are suffering from mental health problems, drug addictions, or both.

    Meanwhile, over 100,000 Desert Storm veterans, in addition to many of their spouses and children, have registered with the VA or Defense Department with symptoms of Gulf War Syndrome. And 1995 survey by the VFW found that only about half of veterans who were ill had registered, so the actual number afflicted is surely much higher. Including family members, well over a quarter of a million Americans are likely affected ...''

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    "Date: 8 Aug 1999
    From: "The Scoop"

    The Scoop - http://www.bobharris.com/

    ... NATO leaders would have us believe that the thousands of NATO bombing runs, targeting everything from military bases to civilian bridges to columns of Albanian refugees, were the primary cause of Serbia's withdrawal from Kosovo.

    Nope.

    Instead, NATO's own experts privately conclude that the NATO bombing campaign "failed to damage the Yugoslav army," that Belgrade's 47,000 troops withdrew with their equipment virtually intact, and that the war ended for another reason entirely: because Russia withdrew their diplomatic support for the Belgrade regime and pressed Serbia to sign the Chernomyrdin/Ahtisaari accord ...

    Worse, as the journal Counterpunch (http://www.counterpunch.org) points out, NATO's experts draw from this experience an unexpected lesson: that next time, since it's so hard to hit military targets, the bombing strategy should include even more civilian targets ...

    The August 8th Los Angeles Times (http://www.latimes.com) lists a chronology of major Serbian actions against Albanian Kosovars. The very first was apparently a "rampage" through the town of Kosovska Mitrovica -- where ultimately 650 people were killed -- beginning just three hours after the first NATO bombing.

    The Times doesn't mention it, but Kosovska Mitrovica is the town where the workers at the Trepca mine live.

    This space has long noted numerous little-noted reports from mainstream sources indicating that the KLA originally coalesced as the result of a strike in the massive mining complex, and that control over the mines was once a key strategic concern.

    And now it turns out that's the very first place Serbian paramilitaries attacked ...

    Bob Harris is a stand-up comedian, political writer, and syndicated radio humorist. His new book, Steal This Book And Get Life Without Parole, is now available from www.commoncouragepress.com.

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    www.canada.com/story.html?id=695f5132-7c8d-4aa6-88d6-425e4c93d58b

    NEWS ARTICLE from Canwest Interactive, 2-23-08, by Elizabeth Thompson, Canwest News Service

    ``Kosovo issue is difficult for Canada ...

    OTTAWA -- Canada should be wary of recognizing Kosovo as an independent nation given the existence of the sovereigntist movement in Quebec, former Liberal prime minister Jean Chretien warned Friday ...

    Chretien's comments come as Canada grapples with the thorny question of whether to recognize Kosovo's decision Sunday to separate from Serbia on the basis of a unilateral declaration of independence. While Canadian decision-makers have remained remarkably silent, leaders of Quebec's sovereigntist movement immediately hailed Kosovo's independence.

    Several countries including the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Germany and Australia have moved quickly to recognize Kosovo but several other countries, like Russia and Spain, have refused to recognize it.

    Chretien, who had to make similar decisions during his decade as prime minister, pointed to several nations that should be careful about recognizing Kosovo's unilateral declaration of independence ...

    "If you start (looking) around, we have this problem but the French have this problem with Corsica (and) the Basque part of France. The same thing with the Spaniards who have refused to recognize them. The Scots could leave Great Britain any day, I'm told, let alone Wales. You have the problem in Belgium. Mr. Putin (in Russia) has a problem with states that would like to go." ...''

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    www.news.com.au/heraldsun/story/0,21985,23266984-663,00.html By correspondents in Srinagar, India

    NEWS ARTICLE from The Herald and Weekly Times. 2-23-08

    (Article from Agence France-Presse)

    ``Kosovo heartens Kashmir separatists

    Separatists in Indian Kashmir said Kosovo's unilateral declaration of independence has bolstered their resolve to achieve the same status for the disputed Himalayan territory ...

    India is wary of recognising Kosovo as an independent state because of its potential implications for Kashmir, racked by a nearly two-decade revolt against New Delhi's rule that has left more than 43,000 people dead.

    Nuclear-armed rivals India and Pakistan, which have fought two wars for control of the Muslim-majority region, each hold part of the territory but claim it in full ...''

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    jurist.law.pitt.edu/paperchase/2008/02/bosnian-serbs-threaten-secession.php

    NEWS ARTICLE from The Jurist, 2-23-08

    ``Bosnian Serb lawmakers have backed a resolution calling Kosovo's declaration of independence from Serbia illegal and threatening to call a referendum on their own possible separation from the amalgamated state of Bosnia-Herzegovina ...

    Serbs in northern Kosovo, meanwhile, have been preventing Albanians from crossing the Ibar River into the Serbian part of the divided town of Mitrovica, potentially setting the stage for their own separation from the new entity ...''

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    canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/1962

    ARTICLE from The Canada Free Press, 2-21-08, By Paul Williams

    ``US Supports Terror State

    Bush Adminstration Unites with Al Qaeda in Kosovo

    America's war on terror has come full circle.

    By pledging his support of Kosovo's declaration of independence from Serbia, President George W. Bush has sanctioned the genocide of thousands of Serbian Christians in the Balkans and the creation, thanks to al Qaeda, of a radical Muslim state at the doorway to Europe ...

    Kosovo had formally remained a part of Serbia even though it has been administered by the United Nations and NATO since 1999, when strategic NATO bombings ended the Serbian crackdown on ethnic Albanian separatists ...

    Former UN Ambassador John Bolton maintains that the creation of an independent Kosovo "will give a boost to Islam extremism." Bolton voices his agreement with Alekandr Botsan-Kharcenko, Russia's ambassador to the Balkans, who said: "Any unilateral declaration of independence by Pristina [capital of the new nation] would not be legal and could trigger separatist movements in the world ...

    The turmoil in Kosovo began in 1989 ... To aid in the struggle for independence, the ethnic Albanians turned to Osama bin Laden and the mujahadeen. Muslim warriors from Chechnya, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia traveled in droves to Kosovo. By 1995, more than sixty thousand holy warriors, including members of al Qaeda, had made their way to the Balkans to prepare for the struggle against Milosevic and the Christian Serbs.

    Bin Laden visited the area three times between 1994 and 1996. In the wake of these visits, al Qaeda training camps popped up in Zenica in Bosnia and Malisevo and Mitrovica in Kosovo; elaborate command and control centers were set up in Croatia, Macedonia, and Bulgaria; and a central headquarters for the mujahadeen was established in Tropje, Albania ... In addition, Bin Laden provided seven hundred million dollars to establish the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) ...

    By 1997, President Bill Clinton, Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, and Secretary of Defense William Cohen came to view the KLA as 'freedom fighters.' Millions in U.S. aid began to flow to the Muslim rebels. America, unbeknown to its citizens, was now in league with the terrorists ...

    Between March 24 and June 10, 1999, 37,465 bombing missions took place, destroying 400 Serbian artillery weapons and 270 armored personnel carriers, and causing 1.4 ethnic Albanians to flee for their lives - - the greatest mass migration of refugees since World War II.

    Milosevic and the Serbs were forced to toss in the towel. The accord of June 21, 1999 ended the air strikes, eliminated the presence of a Serbian government in Kosovo, and authorized a NATO force of 1,700 police officers to establish law and order until democratic elections could be held ...

    The ethnic Albanians who had fled for safety from the Serbs now returned with a vengeance. A pogrom got underway in the Balkans, and neither Bill Clinton nor the United Nations uttered a word of protest.

    The Muslims wasted no time in exacting their pounds of flesh. More than two hundred Christian churches and monasteries were destroyed before the NATO peace-keeping force. Some of these Christian shrines, including the Devic Monastery, the Cathedral of St. George, and the Monastery of the Holy Archangels, had been built in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. Reports surfaced of mass executions of Serbian farmers, the murders of scores of priests, the rape of nuns, and 'granny killings' - - the drowning of old Christian women in bathtubs.

    Of the two hundred thousand Serbs who lived in Kosovo before the conflict, only four hundred remained after Kosovo became a NATO protectorate. The vast majority of the Christians had gathered their belongings and fled for their lives ...

    In the aftermath of the war, hundreds of Wahhabi mosques and schools, thanks to the contributions of wealthy Saudis, now appeared in every town and hamlet throughout the country. The back-door to Europe had been pried open by bin Laden and the mujahadeen for the drug trade and the movement of weapons of mass destruction ...

    The real genocide in Kosovo, i. e., the killing of Christian Serbs, continued under the collective noses of the George W. Bush Administration. In March 2004, the ethnic Albanians, in a last ditch effort to eradicate the remaining Serbs, torched Serbian homes and destroyed almost all of the remaining Serbian Orthodox Church sites, and even the UN facilities. But no protest came from the White House.

    Instead, President Bush visited Albania on June 11, 2007 and declared: "At some point, sooner rather than later, you've got to say, Enough is enough - - Kosovo is independent."

    On February 17, 2008, enough became enough. Kosovo declared its independence and the mujahadeen dream of the Islamic Republic of Greater Albania began to crystallize into a reality ...''

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    www.thepeoplesvoice.org/cgi-bin/blogs/voices.php/2008/01/25/on_fbi_whistle_blower_sibel_edmonds

    ARTICLE from The Peoples Voice, 1-25-08, by Don Swift

    ``On FBI whistle-blower Sibel Edmonds

    FBI whistle-blower Sibel Edmonds told the London Sunday Times in January, 2008 that a court order muzzling her protects people who sold nuclear secrets ... A Justice counter-intelligence unit had been investigating the network since 1996. The document states that the Turks had been warned that Brewster Jennings was a CIA front working to stem nuclear proliferation.

    Edmonds learned through translating tapes that a senior State Department official and senior Pentagon people were selling information to the Turks and others. The State Department official was useful in obtaining the release of four foreign operatives who had been rounded up after 9/11 ...

    It appears that the cases of Sibel Edmonds and Valerie Plame are linked. Plame was in hot pursuit of the same network. Wayne Madsen, an investigative reporter, was the first to see the connection between the Edmonds and Plame cases. He wrote that Plame's Brewster Jennings operation had intercepted a nuclear materials shipment that was supposed to have been planted in Iraq to make the case for weapons of mass destruction there.

    Madsen traces the corrupt tie to Turkey and other Islamic countries far beyond 1996 and, like The Times, links it to the Pakistani bomb. Richard Barlow, head of the Counter-Proliferation Division, was fired in 1989, when he found evidence that the George H.W. Bush administration was helping the A.Q. Khan nuclear manufacturing program in Pakistan.

    Stephen Hadley, then an assistant to Secretary of Defense Richard Cheney, led the effort to fire Barlow. Today, the Swiss Federal Prosecutor's Office has been complaining that the administration of George W. Bush will not assist it in its investigation of AQ Khan.

    The Scooter Libby case is interesting because 'Turkey' kept turning up in documents that were released. When Cheney aids and Rove discussed Plame, their discussion evolved into a discussion of Russian mogul Mikhail Khodorkovsky, A Q Khan and the Turks ... Libby was found guilty of lying, and President Bush subsequently commuted Libby's sentence.

    Sibel Edmonds, then 32, was employed by the FBI after 9/11 to translate intercepts of conversations in Turkish and Farsi. She was employed as a language specialist for the FBI's Washington Field Office. During her work with the bureau, she discovered and reported serious acts of security breaches, cover-ups, and intentional blocking of intelligence that had national security implications. She repeatedly claimed that the government had enough information to enable it to foil the 9/11 plot.

    Specifically, she said the FBI had information that terrorists planned to fly planes into the World Trade Center. She also believed the evidence she saw meant that narcotics money was going to both Al Qaeda and US politicians. Three weeks after she testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee, she was terminated ...

    She also claimed that Al Qaeda was 95% financed by drugs, but the 9/11 Commission went out of its way to write "there is no reliable evidence that Bin Laden was involved in or made his money through drug trafficking." This drug trade goes back to the CIA's long-time involvement with Pakistan's ISI and the BCCI. It grew greatly during the effort to oust the Soviets from Afghanistan.

    If today, the CIA, the Taliban, and Al Qaeda are all involved in the Afghan drug trade, it would not be surprising if they had some common business relationships or, at the least, were all dealing with the same major Afghan drug lords ...

    At the heart of [Sibel Edmonds] problems were her claims that Turkish money was making its way to US politicians and that the Turks and others were involved in the drug and illicit arms trade. She has repeatedly claimed that she was gagged because she knew criminally obtained money was reaching people in high places in the United States government.

    In 1997, British Home Secretary Tom Sackville angered his government by openly stating that Turkey was neck-deep in the international drug trade. He was correct in point of fact, but Turkey is an important western ally, and it would be disconcerting to take the next step and suggest that the US and UK simply look the other way, even when some of this drug money ends up in the coffers of Al Qaeda.

    About $40 billion worth of heroin and illegal drugs pass through Turkey each year; most of it going to Europe. Turkey receives, processes, and ships heroin from a Golden Triangle, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iran ... For some reason, the people on Vice President Cheney's staff, who were busy discrediting CIA agent Valerie Plame and her husband Ambassador Joseph Wilson, had close ties to Turkey ...''

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    english.pravda.ru/opinion/feedback/19-02-2008/104130-kosovo_nationhood-0

    ARTICLE from PRAVDA.Ru, 2-19-08, by Dr. Michael Pravica

    ``Kosovo fails all tests for nationhood

    As we ponder how to confront the newly-created but phony terrorist Islamic Republic of Kosovo's illegal independence, we must first understand exactly why this is such a ridiculous action.

    Some of the first tests for nationhood include:

    1. treatment of minorities and respect for law and meting ofjustice,

    2. respect for the property of citizens,

    3. economic viability,

    4. UN recognition and finally,

    5. can the nation defend itself?

    On all accounts, Kosovo fails miserably.

    Regarding the first test: for the past 60 years, Kosovo's non-Albanian residents have suffered horribly from extremist Albanians with thousands slaughtered, hundreds of thousands ethnically-cleansed, and over 150 Serbian Orthodox Churches and Monasteries destroyed.

    NATO, the self-proclaimed "peacekeeper" of the Serbian province has done next to nothing to prevent the "Krystal nacht" endured by Serbs, Gypsies, and other non-Albanians. The current leaders of Kosovo are war criminals sought by Serbia and Islamic terrorists supported by Osama Bin Laden and other extremists are flourishing there with no fear of justice.

    Regarding test 2: The Serbian Orthodox Church owns much of the land upon which Kosovo is situated. Thus far, there have been no success in efforts to return this land to its rightful owner. Thousands of Kosovo Serbian homes have been torched with next to zero chance that the Serbs will ever return.

    Considering test 3: Kosovo has a roughly 50% unemployment rate with the highest birthrate in Europe and a thriving economy based on drug running, terrorist-training, and the sex-slave trade.

    For test 4, the UN will never recognize Kosovo as Russia realizes that the primary reasons to steal Kosovo from Serbia pertain to maintaining an indefinite NATO military presence in the Serbian province (Camp Bondsteel) to act against a resurgent Russia. A popular saying among many Eastern Europeans is: "Today Serbia, tomorrow Russia." Given the shameful and dishonorable way that the West has behaved since it illegally destroyed the former Yugoslavia, Russians should be very concerned. You can't appease evil.

    Finally, for test 5, the Kosovo Liberation Army never succeeded against the Serbian army except when it has NATO as it's airforce mercilessly bombing civilians in 1999 in NATO's vicious and illegal war against the Serbian people. Kosovo will never survive as an independent state without a foreign army protecting it ...

    The US and the EU are creating a very dangerous precedent by illegally creating a "Greater Albania" that will irreversibly damage relations with Russia and encourage some 200 separatist movements the worldover. The US has lost the "moral" authority to act as self-appointed "policeman" of the world. Just as the Nazi occupation of the Sudentenland from Czechoslovakia was the precursor to WWII, the Western theft of Kosovo may provoke WWIII. It's time for Russia to draw a line in the sand.''

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    www.israelenews.com/view.asp?ID=873

    ARTICLE from The Israel News, 1-31-08, By Professor Michel Chossudovsky,

    [Part 1]

    ``The following text was first published in Italian in: Giuletto Chiesa (Editor), Perché la versione ufficiale sull' 11/9 è un Falso: Why the Official Version on 9/11 is a Falsehood], Piemme, Casale Monferrato, 2007.

    A detailed analysis of the relevant issues covered in this article is also contained in the author's book America's "War on Terrorism", Global Research, 2005

    Introduction

    One of the main objectives of war propaganda is to "fabricate an enemy". The "outside enemy" personified by Osama bin Laden is "threatening America".

    Pre-emptive war directed against "Islamic terrorists" is required to defend the Homeland. Realities are turned upside down. America is under attack.

    In the wake of 9/11, the creation of this "outside enemy" has served to obfuscate the real economic and strategic objectives behind the war in the Middle East and Central Asia. Waged on the grounds of self-defense, the pre-emptive war is upheld as a "just war" with a humanitarian mandate.

    As anti-war sentiment grows and the political legitimacy the Bush Administration falters, doubts regarding the existence of this illusive "outside enemy" must be dispelled.

    Counter-terrorism and war propaganda are intertwined. The propaganda apparatus feeds disinformation into the news chain. The terror warnings must appear to be "genuine". The objective is to present the terror groups as "enemies of America."

    Ironically, Al Qaeda --the "outside enemy of America" as well as the alleged architect of the 9/11 attacks-- is a creation of the CIA.

    From the outset of the Soviet-Afghan war in the early 1980s, the US intelligence apparatus has supported the formation of the "Islamic brigades". Propaganda purports to erase the history of Al Qaeda, drown the truth and "kill the evidence" on how this "outside enemy" was fabricated and transformed into "Enemy Number One".

    The US intelligence apparatus has created it own terrorist organizations. And at the same time, it creates its own terrorist warnings concerning the terrorist organizations which it has itself created. Meanwhile, a cohesive multibillion dollar counterterrorism program "to go after" these terrorist organizations has been put in place.

    Portrayed in stylized fashion by the Western media, Osama bin Laden, supported by his various henchmen, constitutes America's post-Cold war bogeyman, who "threatens Western democracy". The alleged threat of "Islamic terrorists", permeates the entire US national security doctrine. Its purpose is to justify wars of aggression in the Middle East, while establishing within America, the contours of the Homeland Security State.

    Historical Background

    What are the historical origins of Al Qaeda? Who is Osama bin Laden?

    The alleged mastermind behind the 9/11 terrorists attacks, Saudi-born Osama bin Laden, was recruited during the Soviet-Afghan war, "ironically under the auspices of the CIA, to fight Soviet invaders".(Hugh Davies, "`Informers' point the finger at bin Laden; Washington on alert for suicide bombers." The Daily Telegraph, London, 24 August 1998).

    In 1979 the largest covert operation in the history of the CIA was launched in Afghanistan:

    "With the active encouragement of the CIA and Pakistan's ISI, who wanted to turn the Afghan Jihad into a global war waged by all Muslim states against the Soviet Union, some 35,000 Muslim radicals from 40 Islamic countries joined Afghanistan's fight between 1982 and 1992. Tens of thousands more came to study in Pakistani madrasahs. Eventually, more than 100,000 foreign Muslim radicals were directly influenced by the Afghan jihad." (Ahmed Rashid, "The Taliban: Exporting Extremism", Foreign Affairs, November-December 1999).

    This project of the US intelligence apparatus was conducted with the active support of Pakistan's Inter Services Intelligence (ISI), which was entrusted in channelling covert military aid to the Islamic brigades and financing, in liason with the CIA, the madrassahs and Mujahideen training camps.

    U.S. government support to the Mujahideen was presented to world public opinion as a "necessary response" to the 1979 Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in support of the pro-Communist government of Babrak Kamal.

    The CIA's military-intelligence operation in Afghanistan, which consisted in creating the "Islamic brigades", was launched prior rather than in response to the entry of Soviet troops into Afghanistan. In fact, Washington's intent was to deliberately trigger a civil war, which has lasted for more than 25 years ...

    A "Militant Islamic Network" was created by the CIA. The "Islamic Jihad" (or holy war against the Soviets) became an integral part of the CIA's intelligence ploy. It was supported by the United States and Saudi Arabia, with a significant part of the funding generated from the Golden Crescent drug trade:

    "In March 1985, President Reagan signed National Security Decision Directive 166 " [which] authorize[d] stepped-up covert military aid to the Mujahideen, and it made clear that the secret Afghan war had a new goal: to defeat Soviet troops in Afghanistan through covert action and encourage a Soviet withdrawal.

    The new covert U.S. assistance began with a dramatic increase in arms supplies -- a steady rise to 65,000 tons annually by 1987 " as well as a "ceaseless stream" of CIA and Pentagon specialists who travelled to the secret headquarters of Pakistan's ISI on the main road near Rawalpindi, Pakistan. There, the CIA specialists met with Pakistani intelligence officers to help plan operations for the Afghan rebels."(Steve Coll, The Washington Post, July 19, 1992.) ...

    The Central Intelligence Agency using Pakistan's ISI as a go-between played a key role in training the Mujahideen. In turn, the CIA-sponsored guerrilla training was integrated with the teachings of Islam. The madrasahs were set up by Wahabi fundamentalists financed out of Saudi Arabia: "[I]t was the government of the United States who supported Pakistani dictator General Zia-ul Haq in creating thousands of religious schools, from which the germs of the Taliban emerged."(Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA), "RAWA Statement on the Terrorist Attacks in the U.S.", Centre for Research on Globalisation (CRG),

    globalresearch.ca/articles/RAW109A.html

    16 September 2001)

    CIA covert support to the "Islamic Jihad" operated indirectly through the Pakistani ISI -- i.e. the CIA did not channel its support directly to the Mujahideen. For these covert operations to be "successful", Washington was careful not to reveal the ultimate objective of the "Jihad", which consisted not only in destabilising the secular (pro-Soviet) government in Afghanistan, but also destroying the Soviet Union ...

    The history of the drug trade in Central Asia is intimately related to the CIA's covert operations. Prior to the Soviet-Afghan war, opium production in Afghanistan and Pakistan was directed to small regional markets. There was no local production of heroin. (Alfred McCoy, Drug Fallout: the CIA's Forty Year Complicity in the Narcotics Trade. The Progressive, 1 August 1997).

    Researcher Alfred McCoy's study confirms that within two years of the onslaught of the CIA operation in Afghanistan, "the Pakistan-Afghanistan borderlands became the world's top heroin producer, supplying 60 per cent of U.S. demand." (Ibid)

    "CIA assets again controlled this heroin trade. As the Mujahideen guerrillas seized territory inside Afghanistan, they ordered peasants to plant opium as a revolutionary tax. Across the border in Pakistan, Afghan leaders and local syndicates under the protection of Pakistan Intelligence operated hundreds of heroin laboratories. During this decade of wide-open drug-dealing, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency in Islamabad failed to instigate major seizures or arrests. " (Ibid)

    Afghanistan is a strategic hub in Central Asia, bordering on China's Western frontier and on the former Soviet Union. While it constitutes a land bridge for the oil and gas pipeline corridors linking the Caspian sea basin to the Arabian sea, it is also strategic for its opium production, which today, according to UN sources, supplies more than 90 % of the World's heroin market, representing multi-billion dollar revenues for business syndicates, financial institutions, intelligence agencies and organized crime. (See Michel Chossudovsky, America's "War on Terrorism, Global Research, 2005, Chapter XVI)

    Protected by the CIA, a new surge in opium production unfolded in the post cold War era. Since the October 2001 US invasion of Afghanistan, opium production has increased 33 fold since the US led invasion. The annual proceeds of the Golden Crescent drug trade are estimated between 120 and 194 billion dollars (2006), representing more than one third of the worldwide annual turnover of the narcotics trade. (Michel Chossudovsky, Heroin is good for Your Health, Occupation Forces Support Afghan Drug Trade, Global Research, April 2007. see also Douglas Keh, Drug Money in a Changing World, Technical document No. 4, 1998), From the Soviet-Afghan War to the "War on Terrorism" ...

    In the wake of the Cold War, the CIA continued to support the Islamic brigades out of Pakistan. New undercover initiatives were set in motion in the Middle East, Central Asia, the Balkans and south East Asia.

    In the immediate wake of the Cold War, Pakistan's ISI "served as a catalyst for the disintegration of the Soviet Union and the emergence of six new Muslim republics in Central Asia". (International Press Services, 22 August 1995). Meanwhile, Islamic missionaries of the Wahabi sect from Saudi Arabia had established themselves in the Muslim republics, as well as within the Russian federation, encroaching upon the institutions of the secular State. Despite its anti-American ideology, Islamic fundamentalism was largely serving Washington's strategic interests in the former Soviet Union, the Balkans and the Middle East.

    Following the withdrawal of Soviet troops in 1989, the civil war in Afghanistan continued unabated. The Taliban were being supported by the Pakistani Deobandis and their political party, the Jamiat-ul-Ulema-e-Islam (JUI). In 1993, the JUI entered Pakistan's government coalition of Prime Minister Benazzir Bhutto. Ties between the JUI, the Army and the ISI were established.

    In 1996, with the downfall of the Hezb-I-Islami Hektmatyar government in Kabul, the Taliban not only instated a hardline Islamic government, they also "handed control of training camps in Afghanistan over to JUI factions "". (Ahmed Rashid, "The Taliban: Exporting Extremism", Foreign Affairs, November - December, 1999, p. 22.)

    The JUI, with the support of the Saudi Wahabi movement, played a key role in recruiting volunteers to fight in the Balkans and the former Soviet Union. (Ibid) Jane Defence Weekly confirms, that "half of Taliban manpower and equipment originate[d] in Pakistan under the ISI."

    Backed by Pakistan's military intelligence, which in turn was controlled by the CIA, the Taliban Islamic State largely served US geopolitical interests. No doubt this explains why Washington had closed its eyes on the reign of terror imposed by the Taliban in 1996, including the blatant derogation of women's rights, the closing down of schools for girls, the dismissal of women employees from government offices and the enforcement of "the Sharia laws of punishment". (K. Subrahmanyam, "Pakistan is Pursuing Asian Goals", India Abroad, 3 November 1995.)

    The Golden Crescent drug trade was also being used to finance and equip the Bosnian Muslim Army (starting in the early 1990s) and the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA). In fact, at the time of the September 11 attacks, CIA-sponsored Mujahideen mercenaries were fighting within the ranks of KLA-NLA terrorists in their assaults into Macedonia ...

    Ironically, the US Administration's undercover military-intelligence operations in Bosnia, which consisted in promoting the formation of "Islamic brigades", have been fully documented by the Republican Party. A lengthy Congressional report by the Senate Republican Party Committee (RPC) published in 1997, largely confirms the International Media Corporation report quoted above. The RPC Congressional report accuses the Clinton administration of having "helped turn Bosnia into a militant Islamic base" leading to the recruitment through the so-called "Militant Islamic Network," of thousands of Mujahideen from the Muslim world ...

    ----------------------

    www.israelenews.com/view.asp?ID=874

    By: Professor Michel Chossudovsky,

    [Part 2]

    ``Complicity of the Clinton Administration

    In other words, the Republican Party Committee report confirms unequivocally the complicity of the Clinton Administration with several Islamic fundamentalist organisations including Al Qaeda. The Republicans wanted at the time to undermine the Clinton Administration ...

    The "Bosnian pattern" described in the 1997 Congressional RPC report was replicated in Kosovo. With the complicity of NATO and the US State Department, Mujahideen mercenaries from the Middle East and Central Asia were recruited to fight in the ranks of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) in 1998-99, largely supporting NATO's war effort.

    Confirmed by British military sources, the task of arming and training of the KLA had been entrusted in 1998 to the US Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) and Britain's Secret Intelligence Services MI6, together with "former and serving members of 22 SAS [Britain's 22nd Special Air Services Regiment], as well as three British and American private security companies". (The Scotsman, Edinburgh, 29 August 1999).

    The US DIA approached MI6 to arrange a training programme for the KLA, said a senior British military source. `MI6 then sub-contracted the operation to two British security companies, who in turn approached a number of former members of the (22 SAS) regiment. Lists were then drawn up of weapons and equipment needed by the KLA.' While these covert operations were continuing, serving members of 22 SAS Regiment, mostly from the unit's D Squadron, were first deployed in Kosovo before the beginning of the bombing campaign in March. (Truth in Media, "Kosovo in Crisis", Phoenix, Arizona,

    www.truthinmedia.org/

    2 April 1999).

    While British SAS Special Forces in bases in Northern Albania were training the KLA, military instructors from Turkey and Afghanistan financed by the "Islamic jihad" were collaborating in training the KLA in guerilla and diversion tactics.:(The Sunday Times, London, 29 November 1998).

    "Bin Laden had visited Albania himself. He was one of several fundamentalist groups that had sent units to fight in Kosovo, ... Bin Laden is believed to have established an operation in Albania in 1994 ... Albanian sources say Sali Berisha, who was then president, had links with some groups that later proved to be extreme fundamentalists." (Ibid)

    Congressional Testimonies on KLA-Al Qaeda links

    In the mid-1990s, the CIA and Germany's Secret Service, the BND, joined hands in providing covert support to the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA). In turn, the latter was receiving support from Al Qaeda.

    According to Frank Ciluffo of the Globalized Organised Crime Program, in a December 2000 testimony to the House of Representatives Judicial Committee:

    "What was largely hidden from public view was the fact that the KLA raise part of their funds from the sale of narcotics. Albania and Kosovo lie at the heart of the "Balkan Route" that links the "Golden Crescent" of Afghanistan and Pakistan to the drug markets of Europe. This route is worth an estimated $400 billion a year and handles 80 percent of heroin destined for Europe." (U.S. Congress, Testimony of Frank J. Cilluffo, Deputy Director of the Global Organized Crime Program, to the House Judiciary Committee, Washington DC, 13 December 2000).

    According to Ralf Mutschke of Interpol's Criminal Intelligence division also in a testimony to the House Judicial Committee:

    "The U.S. State Department listed the KLA as a terrorist organization, indicating that it was financing its operations with money from the international heroin trade and loans from Islamic countries and individuals, among them allegedly Usama bin Laden" ...

    The Congressional documents also confirm that members of the Senate and the House knew the relationship of the Administration to international terrorism. To quote the statement of Rep. John Kasich of the House Armed Services Committee: "We connected ourselves [in 1998-99] with the KLA, which was the staging point for bin Laden..." (U.S. Congress, Transcripts of the House Armed Services Committee, Washington, DC, 5 October 1999,)

    In the wake of the tragic events of September 11, [2001] Republicans and Democrats in unison have given their full support to the President to "wage war on Osama".

    In 1999, Senator Jo Lieberman had stated authoritatively that "Fighting for the KLA is fighting for human rights and American values." In the hours following the October 7 missile attacks on Afghanistan, the same Jo Lieberman called for punitive air strikes against Iraq: "We're in a war against terrorism... We can't stop with bin Laden and the Taliban."

    Yet Senator Jo Lieberman, as member of the Armed Services Committee of the Senate had access to all the Congressional documents pertaining to "KLA-Osama" links. In making this statement, he was fully aware that that agencies of the US government as well as NATO were supporting international terrorism ...

    Washington's Hidden Agenda

    U.S. foreign policy is not geared towards curbing the tide of Islamic fundamentalism. In fact, it is quite the opposite. The significant development of "radical Islam", in the wake of the Cold War in the former Soviet Union and the Middle East is consistent with Washington's hidden agenda. The latter consists in sustaining rather than combating international terrorism, with a view to destabilizing national societies and preventing the articulation of genuine secular social movements directed against the American Empire.

    Washington continues to support -- through CIA covert operations -- the development of Islamic fundamentalism, throughout the Middle East, in the former Soviet Union as well in China and India.

    Throughout the developing world, the growth of sectarian, fundamentalist and other such organizations tends to serve U.S. interests. These various organizations and armed insurgents have been developed, particularly in countries where state institutions have collapsed under the brunt of the IMF [International Monetary Fund] - sponsored economic reforms.

    These fundamentalist organizations contribute by destroying and displacing secular institutions. Islamic fundamentalism creates social and ethnic divisions. It undermines the capacity of people to organize against the American Empire. These organizations or movements, such as the Taliban, often foment "opposition to Uncle Sam" in a way which does not constitute any real threat to America's broader geopolitical and economic interests.

    Erasing the History of Al Qaeda

    Since September 2001, this history of Al Qaeda has largely been erased. The links of successive US administrations to the "Islamic terror network" is rarely mentioned.

    A major war in the Middle East and Central Asia, supposedly "against international terrorism" was launched in October 2001 by a government which had been harboring international terrorism as part of its foreign policy agenda. In other words, the main justification for waging war on Afghanistan and Iraq has been totally fabricated. The American people have been deliberately and consciously misled by their government.

    This decision to mislead the American people was taken on September 11, 2001 barely a few hours after the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Centre. Without supporting evidence, Osama had already been tagged as the "prime suspect". Two days later on Thursday the 13th of September -- while the FBI investigation had barely commenced -- President Bush pledged to "lead the world to victory".

    While the CIA tacitly acknowledges that Al Qaeda was an "intelligence asset" during the Cold War, the relationship is said to "go way back" to a bygone era.

    Most post-September 11 news reports tend to consider that these Al Qaeda -CIA links belong to the "bygone era" of the Soviet-Afghan war. They are invariably viewed as irrelevant to an understanding of 9/11 and the "Global War on Terrorism". Yet barely a few months before 9/11, there was evidence of active collaboration between members of the US military and Al Qaeda operatives in the civil war in Macedonia ...

    The CIA never severed its ties to the "Islamic Militant Network". There is ample evidence that Al Qaeda remains a US sponsored intelligence asset. [Did the U. S. pay terrorists to blow up the Golden Mosque in Iraq in a classic example of 'divide et impera'?]

    Al Qaeda is presented as the architect of 9/11 without ever mentioning its historical links to the CIA and Pakistan's ISI.

    While Al Qaeda remains firmly under the control of the US intelligence apparatus, the US administration has repeatedly intimated that this "outside enemy" will strike again, that a "second 9/11' will occur somewhere in America or in the western World ...

    The September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon were used to galvanize public support for the invasion of Afghanistan, which took place barely four weeks later. Without supporting evidence, Al Qaeda, which was allegedly supported by the Taliban government, was held responsible for the 911 attacks.

    The planning of a major theater war had been ongoing well before 9/11. Whereas the US military was already in an "advanced state of readiness", well at in advance of the 9/11 attacks, the decision to go to war with Afghanistan was taken on the evening of September 11 and was formally announced the following morning ...

    Following the July 2005 London bombings, Vice President Dick Cheney was reported to have instructed USSTRATCOM to draw up a contingency plan "to be employed in response to another 9/11-type terrorist attack on the United States". Implied in the contingency plan is the certainty that Iran would be behind a Second 9/11.

    This "contingency plan" used the pretext of a "Second 9/11", which had not yet happened, to prepare for a major military operation against Iran, while pressure was also exerted on Tehran in relation to its (non-existent) nuclear weapons program.

    What is diabolical in this decision of the US Vice President is that the justification presented by Cheney to wage war on Iran rested on Iran's alleged involvement in a hypothetical terrorist attack on America, which had not yet occurred: The plan includes a large-scale air assault on Iran employing both conventional and tactical nuclear weapons ...

    It is worth noting that one does not plan a war in three weeks: the bombing and invasion of Afghanistan had been planned well in advance of 9/11. As Michael Keefer points out in an incisive review article:

    "At a deeper level, it implies that "9/11-type terrorist attacks" are recognized in Cheney's office and the Pentagon as appropriate means of legitimizing wars of aggression against any country selected for that treatment by the regime and its corporate propaganda-amplification system.... (Michael Keefer, Petrodollars and Nuclear Weapons Proliferation: Understanding the Planned Assault on Iran, Global Research, February 10, 2006) ...

    Without 911, the war criminals in high office do not have a leg to stand on. The entire national security construct collapses like a deck of cards.''

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