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Me and My Shadow.
July 10, 2006 11:22 AM   Subscribe

Some old news regarding Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld. Further proof that tigers don't change their stripes. Tiger Force in operated in Vietnam, led by the recently-deceased Colonel David Hackworth), with the task of out-guerilla-ing the guerillas. Their attrocities were covered up by Cheney, Rumsfeld, and James Schlesinger, who most recently headed an independent panel probing Abu Gharib. Others incidents inside...
posted by rzklkng (63 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
You can also see how our dynamic duo successfully re-heated the Cold War via some fear mongering over some new secret (non-existent) Russian weapon, despite Nixon's actions to the contrary. Also check out their earlier Nixon-sanctioned hatchet job on the Office of Equal Opportunity (OEO), as well as thier (as well as a young DOJ lawyer by the name of Antonin Scalia) epic struggle AGAINST the strengthening of FOIA in the post-Nixon era.

Most interesting of all, however, is how strategically placed leaks to the New York Times were the deciding factor for Ford's veto of the bill strengthening FOIA:
"The question remains, why did Buchen and President Ford change their minds? The available documents do not provide a definitive answer, but notes from key meetings in September and October provide clues to Ford's priorities - and these were far from government transparency. For example, handwritten notes of the first White House senior staff meeting presided over by Donald Rumsfeld and his deputy Richard Cheney (September 30, 1974) [PDF] show Rumsfeld's rising concern about leaks, a discussion that takes up a major part of the meeting. Similarly, notes from the National Security Council meeting on October 7, 1974 [PDF] reveal Ford himself opening the session by complaining about leaks for a full two pages of the transcript, asking for 'recommendations on how to tighten up this system,' and telling his advisers that 'I could have ordered an FBI investigation on this, but Don and I thought it would be better to see what you could do first.'"
Now, what were these leaks? Ford and Rummy had previously supported strengthening FOIA - what changed. The second document from the senior staff meeting in October 1974 involved a 2 New York Times articles related to Israel. Both (link#1, link#2) were from the "Working Group" of the NSC (National Security Council), covered the defensive and offensive capability of the Israelis, as well as their request for future funding. So who did the leaking?posted by rzklkng at 11:24 AM on July 10, 2006 [1 favorite]


Where has Cheney been lately, anyway? It's like he's gone into hiding since he shot that guy in the face.
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:36 AM on July 10, 2006 [1 favorite]


Everything that's going on now had its roots back in the 70s and 80s--it's like the poisonous seeds planted then have finally sprouted, with terrible consequences for all of us.
posted by amberglow at 11:36 AM on July 10, 2006


Only the 70s and 80s? Don't you think this sort of stuff may have been happening even earlier? When I think of Abu Ghraib and other atrocities, it makes me wonder what history has hidden from the years prior to global real-time news and the internet.
posted by NationalKato at 11:41 AM on July 10, 2006


Fortunately for us, this part of our past has been almost completely forgotten. Thus, we can repeat it again and again! Hurray!
posted by Joey Michaels at 11:42 AM on July 10, 2006


A lot of the commonality of the boomer era political folk seems to circle around membership in the College Republicans and a couple of fraternities. Smells like Santorum gay blackmail to me.
posted by rzklkng at 11:46 AM on July 10, 2006


"Where has Cheney been lately, anyway?"

Charging reporters $2,152 to fly with him to NASCAR races.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 11:50 AM on July 10, 2006


Cover ups are nothing new for this crew. Ask the family of Frank Olson [PDF].
posted by ryoshu at 11:51 AM on July 10, 2006


Where has Cheney been lately, anyway?

Just because the MSM isn't paying much attention to him doesn't mean that he's in hiding.
posted by blucevalo at 12:02 PM on July 10, 2006


Facts have a well-known liberal bias.
posted by adamrice at 12:04 PM on July 10, 2006 [1 favorite]


why do you guys insist on point out the deeds of evil doers in high places?

why you gotta be hatin'?
posted by nola at 12:12 PM on July 10, 2006


mischief, the reason this is really intriguing is that the 'modern' republican party was basically born in the 1970s, with Nixon/Ford etc., after the Goldwater debacle made them come up with a win-at-any-cost political machine. These guys were serious give-no-corner immoral incompetents (Kissinger etc.) And now they're back, and meanwhile the Republican party has allied itself with the Religous Right (in the 80s) and made their legislative members into a give-no-corner troops (in the 90s with Gingrich, DeLay, etc.)

It's all a very interesting narrative.
Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, and others in the Nixon-Agnew-Ford orbit left Washington believing that the imperial Presidency had been disastrously hobbled by a now imperial press. When they reappeared in 2001, under the auspices of George W. Bush, the Nixon-Agnew spirit was resurrected with them—this time without the Joycean wordplay.
Nattering Nabobs
Anyone happen to know what the deal was with Reagan? Did he avoid picking up Nixonites for his advisors? How about the first Bush?
posted by Firas at 12:12 PM on July 10, 2006


Only the 70s and 80s? Don't you think this sort of stuff may have been happening even earlier?

It probably was happening earlier, but the 60's changed everything. The rise of civil rights, identity politics, increasing education and comunication, and the end of almost all colonial governments around the world. Maybe power seeking people needed a replacement for the white mans burden, and that was the power of nightmares?!

When I think of Abu Ghraib and other atrocities, it makes me wonder what history has hidden from the years prior to global real-time news and the internet.

There is the suggestion that during the Korean War Americans tested biological weapons on North Korea:
This view was challenged by China and North Korea, who accused the United States of large-scale field testing of biological weapons against them during the Korean War (1950-1953). Their accusation is substantiated by Stephen Endicott and Edward Hagerman in 'The United States and Biological Warfare: secrets of the early Cold War and Korea' (Bloomington, Indiana University Press, 1998).
posted by Chuckles at 12:18 PM on July 10, 2006


Where has Cheney been lately, anyway?

he is in michigan today. we are gonna have lunch so I'll say "HI"
posted by clavdivs at 12:25 PM on July 10, 2006


make sure he doesn't shoot you in the face.
posted by StrasbourgSecaucus at 12:28 PM on July 10, 2006


flagged as derail

That explains the sirens and jackboots I heard in the distance. I was kinda hoping you were pointing to "Smells like ... gay blackmail to me."
posted by yerfatma at 12:31 PM on July 10, 2006


I refuse to care about any of this until someone provides a credible reason *why* these guys would be up to any of this. Why do they want an imperial presidency? Why are they orchestrating this war contrary to all logic, etc.?

What is their worldview/plan? And please, don't simply say "oil". Lay it out for us.
posted by Pastabagel at 12:33 PM on July 10, 2006


Thanks for posting this, rzklkng.

Chuckles: There is the suggestion that during the Korean War Americans tested biological weapons on North Korea:

According to the FAS, this was just propaganda.
The Soviet Union, China, and North Korea accused the United States of using biological warfare against North Korea and China during the Korean War. However, there was no confirmation of these allegations, and no epidemiologic support to the North Korean claim of having experienced epidemics. The United States denied allegations and requested impartial investigations. The International Red Cross suggested the formation of a special commission to investigate, and the World Health Organization offered to intervene. However, neither China nor North Korea responded to the International Red Cross, and the World Health Organization’s offer was rebuffed as a disguised attempt of espionage. Although unsubstantiated, the accusations attracted wide attention and resulted in a loss of international good will toward the United States.
For documentary evidence that the allegations were fabricated, see pp. 185-199 of CWIHP Bulletin 11 (PDF).
posted by russilwvong at 12:35 PM on July 10, 2006


/me dons flame-retardant MeFi jumpsuit

"Atrocities"?

Running a brothel is pretty questionable, and playing games with currency is definitely Leavenworthy, but they don't quite rise to the level of "atrocity" -- that'd be more like My Lai or Abu Ghraib or (apparently) Haditha or this latest rape-and-murder thing.

The Wikipedia article mentioned torture and the necklace-of-ears stuff. Yep. And I knew a Spetnaz whose team decorated their rear area with Bits O' Chechens so that would-be sappers would get the general idea -- Ne conjugare nobiscum -- and not disturb their daytime slumbers as they rested up for the next night's fun. Not to mention I've heard a few second-hand stories of German PWs who didn't quite make it all the way back to rear areas, even before Malmédy. And remember what happened at Fort Pillow or in the Crater at Petersburg during the US Civil War? C'est le guerre. What was that line from Apocalypse Now about "handing out speeding tickets at the Indy 500"?

"Everybody does it" doesn't make it socially or politically acceptable behavior, but are we going after everybody who collected "souvenirs"? Or just those who apparently had Friends in High Places that other folks of a certain political persuasion already have a hard-on for? And what are they gonna do -- dig up Hack's corpse and order him to hand back his medals?

That being off my chest -- interesting post, timely and provocative.
posted by pax digita at 12:36 PM on July 10, 2006


I have decided, officially, than none of this is actually happening. It is a book. Or a dream. Or a movie. Not real life.

In real life, all is well, and people we trust are in power because they're the best people for the job. Good people. Honest people.

Thank God.

Can you imagine if even half of the shit that's going on was going on in real life? THAT WOULD BE CRAZY.

But, of course, a little unrealistic. The American People™ would never go for any of it.

Fun to talk about, though!
posted by JWright at 12:43 PM on July 10, 2006


Pastabagel, 'imperial presidency' in this context doesn't mean 'international imperialism', it means an executive branch that overruns the judicial and legislative ones. Nixon and George W. Bush have a very overt history of doing that, does it not stand to reason that Cheney and Rumsfeld were involved in the idea? As to why, well, I think that's just their 'style'. Nobody actually pursues actions they consider unethical. Cheney probably thinks that a very strong presidency is necessary and appropriate to get things done. That doesn't mean everyone else should let him get away with it.

And yes, when deciding where to take military action, resource concerns are a critical factor. You think the USA would have 'saved' Kuwait if oil wasn't involved?

As for Iraq War II. It was domino theory all over again, this time with Wolfowitz and the neoconservatives thinking it'd be a great project. Why the notion tickled the fancy of people like Rumsfeld I have no idea. Why George W. Bush got on to the bandwagon is even more of a mystery for me. My understanding is that he literally thought of Iran, Iraq and North Korea as equally bad/dangerous/incompetent regimes (which is a terribly off-kilter analysis) and figured hey, if you can knock a couple out, might as well go for it. September 11 was what put them over the edge into saying "let's go for it" I think.
posted by Firas at 12:47 PM on July 10, 2006


What is their worldview/plan?

I'd think it's pretty obvious that they want a world completely dominated by America. As they say, it takes an Emperor to rule an Empire. There have always been men who're willing to do literally anything for their country. (Of course these men tend to be part of the ruling class. You rarely find the poor jostling about for geopolitical power. Sometimes you can sucker your average joe into it if he's been raised on a steady diet of propaganda.) Pre-emptive wars, torture, war crimes, etc. it's nothing new. In fact, the worse the deed the more it demonstrates your commitment to the cause. The problem with Cheney and Rumsfeld is that they reached too far, too fast. Sure 9/11 presented an extraordinary opportunity, but Americans aren't Germans. Now the truth is out, people can see Cheney et. al. for what they really are and they're going to reject it even more forcefully. This is why you have to boil frogs slowly. When Bush leaves office the entire notion of an Imperial Presidency is going to be even more discredited than it already was.

Hopefully, the next guys who seek to destroy the republic and create an empire will be a lot more subtle about it. The corporate metaphor makes a lot of sense (Cheney should've stuck with it!). You cast the President as a CEO-type figure and you encourage others to 'get onboard.' Americans don't respond well to fear and torture and 'detainment.' That's so 20th century. The American Emperor, when he arrives, has to be a very cheerful, very upbeat, very energetic, and very focused on the economy. The whole 'warrior/war/president' is too risky. Ironically, the total disaster in Iraq would be less of a deal if they hadn't beaten the war drums so loudly. They just couldn't resist, I suppose. The American Emperor will never cast himself as a 'war president' because war will be the totally normal state of affairs.

In conclusion the problem with Cheney et. al. is that they're old. They're goals aren't so misguided, most Americans insist on being a hyperpower and being '#1', it's just they're clumsy methods that grate.
posted by nixerman at 12:48 PM on July 10, 2006


I refuse to care about any of this until someone provides a credible reason *why* these guys would be up to any of this.

While I share your curiosity as to their motives, I think not caring is is just sticking you're head in the sand. I don't need to know someone's motive for beating me over the head with a baseball bat to know that it just might kill me.
posted by doctor_negative at 12:50 PM on July 10, 2006


And, just as a reply to all the young'uns who think the hippies have sold out and are ruining the world...hey, we're only, like fifty or so and we are so not running the world.

We hated these guys thirty years ago and we still hate them. And, unfortunately, they seem a lot more immortal than rock musicians. Just a little drinkin' and shootin' now and then, while running the world into the ground. (OK, that was a pretty sorry figure of speech.)
posted by kozad at 12:57 PM on July 10, 2006


I refuse to care about any of this until someone provides a credible reason *why* these guys would be up to any of this.

Pastabagel: Why has anyone over the course of human history ever aspired to absolute power, and why do people with such aspirations somehow always seem to find fanatical supporters to help them further their ambitions? You can't deny massive power grabs are a recurring phenomena in human history (unless you want to ignore the recurrent historical reality of figures like Genghis Kahn, Napoleon, Nero, Caesar, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot, Hitler, etc.--and don't call Godwin, because I don't mean to draw a direct parallel here).

Power is power. And for some, power is a powerful intoxicant, clouding out better judgment and reflective wisdom. Over the course of my life I've known both of the key types who play along in the power game: Those who want it for themselves and those who adore those who want it for themselves (and in return expect to receive some personal benefit for their devotion). Both types are very real, and very dangerous. Why do they exist in the first place? I suspect it has something to do with a desire for immortality and a lack of real spiritual depth on the part of the power-seekers, and a similar fear of mortality mingled with cowardice on the part of their supporters, but who can say with any confidence? All that really matters is the fact that such people exist now and have always existed and that fact is indisputable.
posted by saulgoodman at 1:00 PM on July 10, 2006


I refuse to care about any of this until someone provides a credible reason *why* these guys would be up to any of this. Why do they want an imperial presidency? Why are they orchestrating this war contrary to all logic, etc.?

What is their worldview/plan? And please, don't simply say "oil". Lay it out for us.


They are executing the Project for the New American Century. They tell us what they are doing.
posted by Mr_Zero at 1:05 PM on July 10, 2006


but are we going after everybody who collected "souvenirs"? Or just those who apparently had Friends in High Places that other folks of a certain political persuasion already have a hard-on for?

pax digita, I would suggest that there is a purpose in going after those who had Friends in High Places. Prosecuting Spc. Joe Blow from Tumbleweed, New Mexico shows that these types of atrocities can and do happen, but is in itself an isolated event. Finding those Higher Ups guilty of or complicit with said atrocities shows that no one is above the law.

And what are they gonna do -- dig up Hack's corpse and order him to hand back his medals?

I don't know. Justice is a great thing, even if the guilty party is dead and buried.
posted by NationalKato at 1:06 PM on July 10, 2006


The Tiger Force stuff is easy to figure out - the FOIA stuff tells you how Cheney operates.
posted by rzklkng at 1:12 PM on July 10, 2006


Pastabagel - Power, immortality through works, fear of death, shriveled gonads - all the usual reasons people build empires.Compare and contrast(pdf). One could argue that this dominance could be a good thing for the U.S. and even the world, but even given that, they are neither creative nor careful, nor compromising in political execution. The fact that force is necessary to push the agenda doesn’t invalidate it (plenty of other flaws tho) but does show that lack of ability in execution. And how the human factors are dealt with is only part of that. Exercising power that way while self-assuring is always self-defeating.
posted by Smedleyman at 1:17 PM on July 10, 2006


/I’d add - butchery makes you weak as well. Like a boxer fighting a string of set ups.
posted by Smedleyman at 1:18 PM on July 10, 2006




Sorry if I was flip, but I'm not burying my head in the sand. I'm wondering what their specific goals are. Having an imperial presidency is a means to an end, it isn't the end.

Look, these guys have to be blind and dumb to think that the US is #1 rah rah rah. Please. China is eating our lunch. We rely on petrodollars to finance our debt. We are beyond insolvency. Just to start running surplus again we'd need to invent a brand new industry which, like the internet, would be vertically integrated wholly within the United States so that all the value-added along the way could be taxed here.
posted by Pastabagel at 1:28 PM on July 10, 2006


An op-ed, two old news articles, and a couple wikipedia entries do not make for a good fpp. Do you have anything new to add or are you just flogging some guy's book?
posted by mischief at 1:29 PM on July 10, 2006


Look, these guys have to be blind and dumb to think that the US is #1 rah rah rah.

No, I think they really do believe it. Seriously. If you regard the mainstream media (e.g. the New York Times, the Washington Post) as hostile, and your primary sources of information are friendly media like Fox News, it wouldn't be all that hard to dismiss serious problems as negativity and loss of confidence. After all, the US borrowed a lot of money during World War II, right?
posted by russilwvong at 1:40 PM on July 10, 2006


Cheney and Rumseld were also behind making George H.W. Bush the head of the CIA, and, along with Paul Wolfowitz, were involved in Team B, which second-guessed the CIA about the Soviet Union.

I recently read an interesting article about John W. Powell, who was indicted for sedition in 1956 for publishing allegations that the US used biological weapons in the Korean War in his Shanghai-based China Weekly Review. This book claims that the US used biological weapons in Korea; it got a skeptical review in the New York Times.
posted by kirkaracha at 1:49 PM on July 10, 2006


Intresting that Hackworth was a big opponent of the war in Iraq.
posted by delmoi at 1:50 PM on July 10, 2006


oh mischief, you're such a jerk-off.
posted by puke & cry at 1:52 PM on July 10, 2006 [1 favorite]


Interesting read russilvwong (well, skim, actually).. CWIHP Bulletin 11 is dated Winter 1998. The book cited by wikipedia was published in 1998, I wonder if it addresses this documentary evidence. I first heard of the allegation through TVO's airing of Brian McKenna's documentary Korea: the Unfinished War, from 2003. They aired a debate at the end where the biological warfare allegation figured prominently. Unfortunately, I don't remember many details, I wonder if that evidence was even addressed.. Anyway, the editor's note from the bulletin is an interesting read too :P (emphasis mine, of course):
Editor’s note: The documents featured in this section of the Bulletin present new evidence on the allegations that the United States used bacteriological weapons during the Korean War. In the accompanying commentaries, historian Kathryn Weathersby and scientist Milton Leitenberg (University of Maryland) provide analysis, context and interpretation of these documents. Unlike other documents published in the Bulletin, these documents, first obtained and published (in Japanese) by the Japanese newspaper Sankei Shimbun, have not been authenticated by access to the archival originals (or even photocopies thereof). The documents were copied by hand in the Russian Presidential Archive in Moscow, then typed. Though both commentators believe them to be genuine based on textual analysis, questions about the authenticity of the documents, as the commentators note, will remain until the original documents become available in the archives.
I wouldn't have even noticed that, but the tone of the authors seemed strangely giddy, for an academic publication. Who knows..

From the talk page for wikipedia's biological warfare article I ran across Dirty secrets, about John Powell, who figures in the story too. I posted that link to the Famous instances of the press being threatened? question (again, I have to admit to only skimming the article..).

Well, on one more google search (I have so much more attention for searching than I do for reading - must be the effect of too much TV or something).. As to whether Endicott and Hagerman address the Sankei Shimbun documents in their book, they have written an article addressing the issue (another for the list of articles I haven't read today :P).
posted by Chuckles at 1:54 PM on July 10, 2006


NationalKato, I agree with you in principle, but in practice, I wouldn't hold my breath. If this bunch isn't getting in appropriately in trouble over current events, they sure as little fishes won't over 30-year-old ones.
posted by pax digita at 2:50 PM on July 10, 2006


Boy are you guys missing the big hairy Gorilla in the room.

These guys are doing this because they really really really believe they are right.

If was all about "personal" power, glory, and wealth... well there are better, certainly easier, ways to achieve those things. These guys are true fucking believers. That's what keeps me awake nights.

BTW. America IS number #1 as far as raw power and wealth go. For the time being. The irony, as Smed so aptly pointed out, that the surest way to devolve and destroy your power is to flagrantly over extend it.

Wasting your wealth knocking over upstart countries barely out of the iron age and allowing such huge domestic resource disparity between the classes is great way end US hegemony. Yay Neocons!
posted by tkchrist at 2:53 PM on July 10, 2006



Boy are you guys missing the big hairy Gorilla in the room.

These guys are doing this because they really really really believe they are right.


Well of course they do. What better rationalization could there be for making a power grab than really, really, really believing you're right. Doesn't necessarily make it any less a rationalization, does it?
posted by saulgoodman at 3:48 PM on July 10, 2006


Thanks for the link to the Endicott/Hagerman article, Chuckles.
The claim that two places were concocted to fool foreign visitors does not prove that all the sites of alleged biological warfare were also contrived.
Sure, it's not necessarily conclusive. It seems like pretty good evidence, though.

kirkaracha, thanks for the links, especially the NYT review of the Endicott/Hagerman book.
The authors acknowledge that after 20 years of research they have failed to turn up a single document in American archives that provides direct evidence for their claim.
Oops.
posted by russilwvong at 3:56 PM on July 10, 2006


I don't like the word "rationalization" because that implies the plan was rational to start with — or an after thought.

When you believe your right, with out question, your actions provide their own rational. There is no addendum.

This is why these guys are stupefied as to why the rest of the world is going nuts. They genuinely don't see the problem with what they are doing. In Rumsfelds mind the only reason things haven't gone according to plan is NOT that the plan had flaws but that the rest of us have not gone along.

You see why that is more frightening than guys who are simply power hungry? A guy who simply wants power blindly can see that giving the bulk of his would be followers what they want is the easiest way to power. An abstract truth is irrelevant.

A true believer doesn't CARE about the followers. If they get in the way he KILLS them because they are obstacles to his truth...
posted by tkchrist at 4:01 PM on July 10, 2006


tkchrist: i see your point. i think i might be using the term "rationalization" a bit differently than you're taking it, though. maybe "mythic lie" is a more useful construct. i tend to think that power hunger generally consciously manifests itself as some sort of dogmatic belief system. i think it's a sort of psychological trick that power hungry types play on themselves to make themselves the heroes of the story. fact is, whether it's "manifest destiny," "the superiority of the aryan race," "the spread of civilization," or "the spread of democracy," power grabbers always have some deeply held set of convictions they pursue fanatically without regard for scruples. which comes first? the acts or the beliefs that seem to motivate them? i don't really think it matters. either way, what tyranical types really want is to be able to impose their vision of history and/or reality on others by whatever means necessary. isn't that really the same thing as just wanting power?
posted by saulgoodman at 4:17 PM on July 10, 2006


These guys are doing this because they really really really believe they are right.

I hate to nitpick, but that statement doesn't really say much. Most people have goals, and do the things they do to further those goals. They would probably all tell you that the things they do are "right" in terms of achieving their goals. Cheney and co. are no different.

Now, what those goals are, in this case, is a much more interesting question. I'd agree with what Mr_Zero said. Everything they do is in the interests of securing the political and economic interests of the United States, and however myopic their approach may seem, I don't think there's any doubt about why they're doing it. In the case of the Iraq war, it's getting rid of a regime that a) may pose a security threat to the U.S., and b) does not play nicely with the U.S. and could conceivably hold the U.S. over an economic barrel, so to speak. How could you resist killing two foreign policy birds with one stone?

In the case of the Tiger Force cover up, they're protecting the government at a time when they felt that negative publicity about the war was irreparably damaging the government's (or specifically the executive branch's?) ability to further their goals of <hyperbole>world domination</hyperbole>.

I don't think there's any need to dream up conspiracies for why these guys do what they do. In as much as their actions over the last 30 years may have been secretive at times, they've been remarkably straightforward and consistent about sticking to their goals.
posted by Brak at 4:27 PM on July 10, 2006


I don't think lack of humbleness per se translates in power hunger. If I'm the president of the United States and I invite Russia to join NATO over the strenous objections of the American people, Russian people, and leaders of the other NATO countries, but barge ahead with the issue anyway and cajole everyone into implementing my brilliant idea, am I grabbing power? Or just a true believer™?
posted by Firas at 4:27 PM on July 10, 2006


It's a razor-sharp line I guess. Maybe nobody actually sets out with the goal of 'I'm going to have power!' and power hunger is always a manifestation of zealous conviction.
posted by Firas at 4:32 PM on July 10, 2006


the power of nightmares, part 1 of 3
posted by Kifer85 at 4:56 PM on July 10, 2006


I think most powerful people who succeed and are not tyrants have doubts and hence more realistic goals. Not to mention better 'Plan B's" than the true believers.

True believers are more apt to surround themselves with echo chambers and not watch the Profit & Loss columns accurately. The steam roll forward. Even off of cliffs.

These are closely related types and I think one evolves from the other. But as far as my "Holy SHIT!" meter is concerned? When True Believers are in charge it merits more careful judicious paranoia.
posted by tkchrist at 5:04 PM on July 10, 2006


In as much as their actions over the last 30 years may have been secretive at times, they've been remarkably straightforward and consistent about sticking to their goals.

True, but for all their straighforwardness on the one hand, on the other hand, they've still managed to tell quite a few whoppers along the way, not to mention managing to keep their actual policy goals from getting any meaningful scrutiny in the public arena. Do news agencies ever talk in-depth about the stated goals of the Project for the New American Century? Of course not. From surveying the nightly news, you wouldn't know such a thing even existed, much less that it formed the true basis for much of America's current foreign policy. These kinds of truths are routinely omitted from the public discourse and the ommissions are justified on the basis that the average news consumer doesn't have the patience or intellectual capacity to engage such "dull" subject matter. Really? It's a nice excuse, anyway.

/rant
posted by saulgoodman at 5:35 PM on July 10, 2006


Intresting that Hackworth was a big opponent of the war in Iraq.

Is this more of your amazing sarcasm? Amazing Hackworth would be an opponent of something the American military did since he left. Just like every other time. None of which makes him wrong, but still.
posted by yerfatma at 5:54 PM on July 10, 2006


Facts have a well-known liberal bias.
posted by adamrice


That's awesome!

What is their worldview/plan? And please, don't simply say "oil". Lay it out for us.
posted by Pastabagel


Here you go. It's all been planned for 35 years. It's like a conspiracy story, except it's all been layed out for all to see, yet still, people don't.
posted by Balisong at 6:24 PM on July 10, 2006


Umm, okay, I had read the PNAc stuff before. What isn't there is the importnat stuff, the details. How do they want to engage China? Do they want the US to remain indebted to China for decades? Do they want the communist government to fall These are the questions that need to be answered.

Otherwise, I'm sorry, but these guys are dopes. Not crazy, not power mad, just dumb. Do they really think that the quarter trillion dollar corporations that dominate this country are going to let them run off half-cocked into China, and jeopardize the most important market in the world for them?

They keep talking about making America strong, which is a fine goal, but hello, tuning over world's manufacturing to Asia and the worlds energy to the middle east isn't the solution.

I get the feeling that PNAC is a cover story for evacuating the last vestiges of wealth from the U.S. People like Kristol and Rumsfeld look like rubes more and more every day.
posted by Pastabagel at 7:23 PM on July 10, 2006


Balisong—I can't take credit for that line. I stole it from Stephen Colbert's White House correspondent's dinner speech.
posted by adamrice at 7:49 PM on July 10, 2006



I don't like the word "rationalization" because that implies the plan was rational to start with — or an after thought.

When you believe your right, with out question, your actions provide their own rational. There is no addendum.


This stags at the root of the problem.
It is a coup of the language used to define things. (torture accountability, power, is)
This has been going on for quite a while, and has been used to the detriment of the layman for too long.
posted by Balisong at 7:55 PM on July 10, 2006


What isn't there is the importnat stuff, the details. How do they want to engage China? Do they want the US to remain indebted to China for decades? Do they want the communist government to fall These are the questions that need to be answered.

"The ends justify the means" means whatever they (we) have to suffer through is just OK.
They aren't looking at the NOW, or even in the 2 years from NOW, they are looking to the FUTURE.
The means don't matter. Anything can be justified, even if it means shredding the constitution and bill of rights. Those are 200 year old concepts, anyway. It's just a piece of paper.

They keep their eyes on the prize that hovers like a mirage just past the horizon.
That's why they are so dangerous.
posted by Balisong at 8:42 PM on July 10, 2006



This stags at the root


Stabs.
posted by Balisong at 8:44 PM on July 10, 2006


Meanwhile, John Murtha is gonna get swiftboated.
posted by homunculus at 9:36 PM on July 10, 2006 [1 favorite]


Someday, Swiftboating will be a ride at Six Flags.

You sit in a chair and everyone tells you what a piece of shit you are for 15 minutes, then they throw a bucket of cold water on your chest.
E-ticket $3.50
posted by Balisong at 9:44 PM on July 10, 2006 [1 favorite]


People with 5+ deferments get in for free.
posted by homunculus at 10:12 PM on July 10, 2006


(The people who throw the insults and water, that is.)
posted by homunculus at 10:17 PM on July 10, 2006


The authors acknowledge that after 20 years of research they have failed to turn up a single document in American archives that provides direct evidence for their claim.

Not very surprising. The lack of American documentary evidence does make it hard to prove the claim though, no question about that. In hindsight it seems like a pointless risk for the Americans to have taken, but MacArthur wanted to use nukes, so..
posted by Chuckles at 1:19 AM on July 11, 2006


The Veep's Curious Investment Portfolio: Is Cheney Betting On Economic Collapse?
posted by homunculus at 12:10 PM on July 11, 2006


Someday, Swiftboating will be a ride at Six Flags.

I just stole that.

Now people here at the office finally think I am clever. Keep 'em coming. I need the material.
posted by tkchrist at 1:38 PM on July 11, 2006


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