August 27, 2005

Tripura rebels raise funds from pornographics

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/4190570.stm
(see the photo also in link above)

India rebels 'making porn films'
By Subir Bhaumik
BBC News, Calcutta

Rebels in India's north-eastern state of Tripura are making
pornographic films to raise money for their separatist campaign, officials say.

The information has come from surrendered guerrillas of the National
Liberation Front of Tripura (NLFT), according to police.

They say the rebels are forcing captured tribal women, and some men, to
take part in the films.

The films are then dubbed to be sold in India and neighbouring
countries.

Remote areas

The former guerrillas of the NLFT have told police their leaders not
only sexually abused scores of tribal girls recruited into the rebel army
but also used them - and some male guerrillas - to produce scores of
porn films, officials say.

"The films were found to be dubbed in Burmese, Bengali, Thai and Hindi,
suggesting they were being marketed to many countries in the region,"
said Ghanshyam Murari Srivastava, Tripura's police chief.

He said police have recovered scores of pornographic DVDs featuring
young women and men from various parts of the state, including remote
areas such as Amarpur and Gandacherra.

Such pornographic DVDs have also been recovered from NLFT bases inside
Bangladesh after they were raided by the Bangladesh army, the police
chief said.

'Sleek product'

Discreet inquiries with video production houses in Tripura confirmed
what the surrendered rebels are reported to have said.

"We do get orders to process raw porn shot in remote tribal areas from
time to time," the owner of a video production company in the state's
capital Agartala told the BBC.

He did not want to be named.


"We get a lot more money , much above our normal rates, to process
these films and deliver a sleek final product.

"We know the insurgents are behind these films. When we process their
raw stock, we can see boys standing around with automatic rifles and
revolvers pulling in girls but we are supposed to cut all that out and
just concentrate on the sex," the owner said.

"It is very good money and we don't think it is right to question the
insurgents anyway," he said.

The latest pornographic video that has become sought after by young men
in Tripura is Hamjagoi Tongthoklaima, or Our Experiences.

Like a feature film, it runs a full cast of "heroes" and "heroines".

Initially it appears to be a love film with boys and girls holding
hands and walking past lakes and trees. But soon the video starts featuring
close-up shots of the actors undressing and sex.

Since Tripura's tribal young men and women have standard Mongoloid
features, such pornographic films can pass off as being made anywhere in
south-east Asia.

'Actress fled'

Surrendered NLFT rebels say their leaders have always abused tribal
women , both in the villages and also those recruited into the rebel army.

A study by two researchers, Meenakshi Sen Bandopadhyay and Jayanta
Bhattacharya, documented in detail sexual abuses perpetrated by the NLFT.

"The NLFT rebels did not allow a tribal girl in North Tripura to get
married because they wanted to enjoy her by turns. Her parents were
helpless because they lived in a tea garden in a remote area," the study
says.

One surrendered NLFT guerrilla Mohan Reang said: "One tribal actress
Anita Reang who played the heroine in some local films had to flee her
village because a top NLFT leader wanted to whisk her away."

But while forcing tribal women to have sex with them at gunpoint or
carrying them away to the rebel camps is not new, using them to produce
pornography certainly is.

"This seems to have started a year or two back," says local journalist
Manas Paul who began legal proceedings to bring this to the notice of
the authorities.

"But it is now rampant, so many of these discs are circulating all over
our state and possibly in other parts of northeast India as well," he
said.

Central America's Street Gangs Are Drawn into the World of Geopolitics

ver the course of the past year, the Bush administration has begun to shift its focus in Latin America away from asymmetrical threats, such as terrorism, and toward the more traditional power politics of the region: containing the left-leaning governments bent on curtailing Washington's influence in the region. Threats previously espoused by the administration -- Hezbollah's presence in the tri-border region and in Chile, Venezuela's Margarita Island serving as a terrorist resort and Islamic groups working with the drug traffickers in the region -- have all seemingly been knocked down in their threat level in public declarations. However, in Central America, Washington is getting serious about a problem it helped to create -- and not simply because the region's street gangs and vast criminal networks are making their presence known in the United States.

While media reports, often fueled by some in the Bush administration, have focused on the possibility of al-Qaeda tapping into the criminal networks controlled by the gangs, this threat seems overstated for the time being. However, the street gangs represent an opportunity Washington is likely to exploit in the region. Even as Washington adopts a traditional power politics stance in Latin America, it can be expected that it will use Central America's gang problem to deepen its influence in the region through joint initiatives and training programs, in part designed to block Venezuela's attempts to put a rift between the region and Washington.

A U.S. Export: L.A.'s Gangs in Central America

Central America's gang problem largely can be traced back to policy decisions made in the United States in the mid-1990s. There was a shift in the mid-1990s at the local and federal level toward deporting immigrants who had committed crimes or had a criminal record in the United States. While this helped continue the trend toward decreased street violence in U.S. cities, it left Central America vulnerable to a new community with few ties to the region but bound together by their gang affiliations.

A 1996 change to U.S. immigration law declared that non-citizens, and in some cases foreign-born citizens, sentenced to one or more years in prison could be repatriated to their country of origin. The immigration rules also barred U.S. officials from disclosing the deportees' criminal background in many cases. In 1996, around 38,000 people were deported on these grounds, and by 2003 the number reached nearly 80,000. However, the U.S. does not track the number of deportees suspected of having gang affiliations.

This new initiative was most pronounced in Los Angeles County, where the 18th Street Gang and Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) were active. After gang members were arrested, their time in the U.S. penitentiary system served as a "finishing school" for criminal activity. Then they were deported to their countries of origin with little or no warning about their backgrounds for the governments on the receiving end of the arrangement.

Once the gangs arrived in Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Panama and Mexico, they quickly put the lessons learned in prison to work. The numbers are difficult to pin down, but estimates put the number of active gang members in Central America and Mexico at over 100,000. In El Salvador (population 6.7 million) there are more than10,000 core gang members, and 15 municipalities have been, or are, controlled by gangs.

In Honduras (population 6.9 million) the number of gang members may be over 40,000 and the murder rate is 154 per 100,000 (compared to 70 per 100,000 in Colombia, which is still dealing with a civil war). MS-13 and Mara 18 (M-18, formed by members of Los Angeles' 18th Street Gang) overwhelmed the local governments who were often unaware of the problem that they had been handed.

MS-13 and M-18 are often involved in turf battles that dislodge local populations and have overwhelmed the states' ability to contain the problem. In November 2002, Guatemala's Anti-Narcotics Operations Department was dismantled after it was discovered that 320 officers were on the gangs' payrolls. The "get tough" approach and "zero tolerance" laws adopted by Honduras starting in 2001 led to overcapacities in prisons and frequent prison riots. This also encouraged the gangs to respond with random acts of violence as a means of protest. The recent prison riots in Guatemala that left some 31 dead demonstrate that the region's governments have yet to hit upon a better method to contain the problem.

MS-13 and M-18 expanded their operations into Mexico and then the U.S, where they have set up lucrative operations smuggling people and drugs across the border. Police in northern Virginia have estimated that there are 2,500 gang members, largely MS-13, in the greater-Washington region, which has the second-largest Salvadoran population after Los Angeles. Washington's initial response was largely incoherent because of a lack clarity of which departments within the newly created Department of Homeland Security and the Justice Department would lead the operations designed to prevent the gang infiltration.

In January 2005, an F.B.I. task force was created to deal with MS-13 and Washington announced it would begin to inform Central American states about the criminal records of more deportees. While many local police departments have worked in cooperation with their counterparts in Central America, this move marked a shift toward greater cooperation at the federal level. This shift did not come about simply because of the MS-13 and M-18 operations within and on the border of the U.S.; instead, geopolitical realities helped guide Washington's hand.

The Greater Turf War in Central America

The U.S.' signing of C.A.F.T.A. may have helped to solidify El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua's ties to Washington (as well as Panama as an associate), but the pending agreement remains controversial at best in the region. In order to deflect some of this criticism, the C.A.F.T.A. states may be tempted to align themselves closer to Venezuela and Cuba, the countries at the helm of the growing discontent with Washington in Latin America. Caracas and Havana are making great strides to ensure that there will be no shortage of opportunities for the Central American governments to embrace.

The high price of oil on the global market has allowed Venezuela to move beyond the San Jose Agreement, originally signed in 1980, in which Venezuela and Mexico provide discounted oil to Central American and Caribbean states, in its use of petroleum as a diplomatic tool. Caracas demonstrated the value of this diplomatic chip at the recent Association of Caribbean States meeting, where the C.A.F.T.A. states stood alone in their defense of Washington's policies in the region. [See: "Intelligence Brief: Caribbean Spheres of Influence"]

In another diplomatic move aimed at securing support from the Central American governments, on August 22 Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and Cuban President Fidel Castro handed out diplomas to the first graduating class of the Latin American Medical School funded by Cuba, which Chavez has said he would replicate in his country. Several hundred of the new doctors will return to their Central American homelands to practice medicine. Central American governments are also looking at importing Cuba's education policies, an initiative that resonates with the public in ways that a free-trade agreement simply cannot. [See: "Venezuela's Hugo Chavez Makes His Bid for a Bolivarian Revolution"]

Where Caracas and Havana are making inroads in Central America, Washington will move to suture any loss of support by funding popular initiatives designed to strengthen the friendly governments there. One such initiative is likely to be cooperation in tackling the region's burgeoning gang problem.

In a June meeting of the region's presidents in Honduras, Guatemalan President Oscar Berger proposed that a regional, "rapid response" force be created to take on the gang problem in Central America. The leaders have embraced the idea of forming a multilateral force to take on the street gangs, but they are of the shared opinion that it could not function without Washington's involvement.

U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Dan Fisk, at a press conference following the talks in Honduras, said, "We want to strengthen defense mechanisms, especially in terms of gangs." However, Washington was slow to involve itself directly in the "rapid response" force, in order to avoid being perceived as funding a military force designed to subdue the Central American population. Still, similar initiatives are likely to be adopted. For example, the U.S. plans to fund a law enforcement academy in El Salvador to train officials from across the region in anti-gang techniques. The weak judicial systems and police forces in Central America are likely to be reinforced by Washington, in exchange for cooperation on intelligence about the gangs' activities.

The F.B.I. task force created to deal with MS-13 in early 2005 indicates that Washington will focus on law enforcement in its handling of the region's gang problem, while giving less priority to the social factors that have allowed the gangs to proliferate. The weakness of this approach is that it fails to address the environment that fosters the gang problem. For example, a recent study by the International Organization for Migration claims only five percent of youth gang members in Honduras are linked to organized crime. A comprehensive approach would provide incentives to discourage those youths who identify with the gangs from becoming active members in their criminal networks. However, Washington has not publicly addressed any programs aimed at curbing the gang problem through social initiatives.

Conclusion

The incentives for Washington to initiate an anti-gang program in Central America are clear; however, this has been the case for several years now. One of the main reasons that Washington is beginning to give the problem a greater priority is to prevent Venezuela and Cuba from making inroads into its "near abroad." This approach may help to strengthen the Washington-friendly governments in Central America, and, unlike free trade agreements, the benefits of such an initiative will be tangible to the local populations. Should Washington take the lead in fighting Central America's gang problem and fail, it will allow Venezuela and Cuba to gain influence in the region. However, declining to take the lead may only hasten such a power shift.

Report Drafted By:
Adam Wolfe



The Power and Interest News Report (PINR) is an independent organization that utilizes open source intelligence to provide conflict analysis services in the context of international relations. PINR approaches a subject based upon the powers and interests involved, leaving the moral judgments to the reader. This report may not be reproduced, reprinted or broadcast without the written permission of inquiries@pinr.com. All comments should be directed to content@pinr.com.

Cheney's `Spoon-Benders' Pushing Nuclear Armageddon

by Jeffrey Steinberg

Sometime in late 1980, then-Col. Paul E. Vallely, the Commander of the 7th Psychological Operations Group, United States Army Reserve, Presidio of San Francisco, Ca., co-authored a discussion paper, which received wide and controversial attention within the U.S. military, particularly within the Special Operations community. The paper was titled "From PSYOP to MindWar: The Psychology of Victory," and it presented a Nietzschean scheme for waging perpetual psychological warfare against friend and enemy populations alike, and even against the American people.

The "MindWar" paper was provoked by an article by Lt. Col. John Alexander, which appeared in the December 1980 edition of Military Review, advocating the introduction of ESP (extra-sensory perception), "tele-pathetic behavior modification," para-psychology, psychokinesis ("mind over matter"), remote viewing, out of body experiences, and other New Age and occult practices into U.S. military intelligence. Alexander's paper was titled "The New Mental Battlefield: Beam Me Up, Spock."

But the subsequent paper co-authored by Vallely went way beyond ESP and the other paranormal techniques advocated by Alexander: "Strategic MindWar must begin the moment war is considered to be inevitable," the document stated. "It must seek out the attention of the enemy nation through every available medium, and it must strike at the nation's potential soldiers before they put on their uniforms. It is in their homes and their communities that they are most vulnerable to MindWar....

"To this end," Vallely and co-author continued, "MindWar must be strategic in emphasis, with tactical applications playing a reinforcing, supplementary role. In its strategic context, MindWar must reach out to friends, enemies, and neutrals alike across the globe—neither through primitive 'battlefield' leaflets and loudspeakers of PSYOP nor through the weak, imprecise, and narrow effort of psychotronics—but through the media possessed by the United States which have the capabilities to reach virtually all people on the face of the Earth. These media are, of course the electronic media—television and radio. State of the art developments in satellite communication, video recording techniques, and laser and optical transmission of broadcasts make possible a penetration of the minds of the world such as would have been inconceivable just a few years ago. Like the sword Excalibur [King Arthur's magical sword—ed.], we have but to reach out and seize this tool; and it can transform the world for us if we have the courage and the integrity to enhance civilization with it. If we do not accept Excalibur, then we relinquish our ability to inspire foreign cultures with our morality. If they can then desire moralities unsatisfactory to us, we have no choice but to fight them on a more brutish level.

"MindWar must target all participants to be effective. It must not only weaken the enemy; it must strengthen the United States. It strengthens the United States by denying enemy propaganda access to our people, and by explaining and emphasizing to our people the rationale for our national interest in a specific war."

Leaving nothing to the imagination, the document concluded by emphasizing that MindWar should employ subliminal brainwashing technologies, and weapons that directly attack the targetted population's central nervous system and brain functioning: "There are some purely natural conditions under which minds may become more or less receptive to ideas, and MindWar should take full advantage of such phenomena as atmospheric electromagnetic activity, air ionization, and extremely low frequency waves," the paper concluded.

The "MindWar" paper was disturbing, for reasons beyond its fascistic and occultist content. For one thing, Colonel Vallely's co-author was a PSYOP Research & Analysis Team Leader named Maj. Michael A. Aquino. Five years before the circulation of the MindWar paper, Special Forces Reserve officer Aquino had founded the Temple of Set, a Satanic organization which was the successor to Anton Szandor LeVay's Church of Satan. Aquino would soon be grabbing headlines, which persisted throughout the 1980s, as a leading suspect in a nationwide Satanic pedophile ring, that particularly targetted daycare centers on such military bases as Fort Bragg and the Presidio (see article, p. 21).

Furthermore, Vallely and Aquino's MindWar scheme is remarkably similar to the Total Information Awareness (TIA) program launched by the Donald Rumsfeld Pentagon, under the direction of Irangate figure Adm. John Poindexter. Ostensibly, the Total Information Awareness global propaganda and mega-data-mining plan was scrapped after a series of negative news stories, but Pentagon sources have reported that the program was merely "taken into a black box."

Indeed, on Aug. 16, 2005, The New York Times' Philip Shenon revealed that a super-secret Pentagon "special action program" called Able Danger had tracked Mohammed Atta and three of the other Sept. 11, 2001 hijackers a year prior to the attacks; but Pentagon lawyers with the Special Operations Command refused to allow the information to be shared with the FBI, for fear of exposing the data-mining program to any public scrutiny. The Times learned of Able Danger from Lt. Col. Anthony Schaffer, who was the program's liaison to the Defense Intelligence Agency at the time.
'Nuke Iran!'

Colonel Vallely's association with Aquino did little to stall the former's military career advancement. A West Point graduate, Vallely retired in 1991 as deputy commanding general of the U.S. Army of the Pacific. From 1982-86, he headed the 351st Civil Affairs Command, placing him in charge of all Special Forces, Psychological Warfare, and Civil Affairs Military units in the Western United States and Hawaii.

Today, he is practicing what he and Satanist Aquino preached in the MindWar paper, and is one of the leading propaganda assets in Vice President Dick Cheney's push for military confrontation with Iran—one that could see the United States carry out the first pre-emptive nuclear attack in history.

General Vallely, now retired from the military, is a senior military commentator for Rupert Murdoch's shrill Fox TV News; is a "client" of Benador Associates, the premier public relations firm for the neo-conservative cabal in Washington; is the Military Committee chairman for Frank Gaffney's neo-conned Center for Strategic Policy; and is the co-founder, along with Gen. Thomas McInerney (USAF-ret.), another Benador client, of the Iran Policy Committee. IPC is yet another neo-con front group that: 1) promotes the Mujahideen-e-Khalq (MEK), a group on the State Department's list of International Terrorist Organizations (for assassinating a number of U.S. military officers in Iran); and 2) demands U.S. military action to impose "regime change" 1n Tehran, through such measures as a massive bombing campaign against Iran's purported secret nuclear weapons labs, and a U.S. Naval blockade of the Straits of Hormuz. Recently General Vallely co-authored a book with General McInerney, titled Endgame—Blueprint for Victory for Winning the War on Terror, which borrows, philosophically, from his and Aquino's original MindWar rant (see interview with Vallely on p. 13).
The 'Jedi Warriors'

General Vallely, Colonel Alexander, and Lt. Colonel Aquino (ret.) are but three leading figures within the Special Operations community, who have promoted the application of New Age and outright Satanic practices to the art of war, conducting experimental programs aimed at creating a Nietzschean "Übermensch warrior."

In preparation for this article, EIR has interviewed a number of senior retired military and intelligence officers, who have identified, from their own personal experiences, a number of other leading military officers who promoted these efforts and funnelled massive amounts of Pentagon money into "black programs," testing the military applications of a whole range of bizarre "non-lethal" techniques and technologies. Some of the top-secret programs funded by taxpayer dollars over the past 25 years betray a significant degree of outright "spoon-bending" lunacy. Others lead directly to the doorsteps of Guantanamo Bay and Abu Ghraib military detention centers, where prisoners have been turned into human guinea pigs for experimental torture techniques, drawn from the same New Age bag of tricks.

And The New Yorker magazine investigative journalist Seymour Hersh, in a Jan. 24-31, 2005 article on "The Coming Wars," mooted that the Special Forces "black programs" may now have ventured into the field of "pseudo-gang warfare," in which counterinsurgency methods blur with insurgency.

Quoting from a September 2003 San Francisco Chronicle article by Naval Postgraduate School defense analyst and Pentagon counterinsurgency advisor John Arquilla, Hersh hinted that U.S. Special Forces units were being unleashed to create their own terrorist "pseudo gangs" to more easily infiltrate terrorist groups like al-Qaeda. Arquilla wrote: "When conventional military operations and bombing failed to defeat the Mau Mau insurgency in Kenya in the 1950s, the British formed teams of friendly Kikuyu tribesmen who went about pretending to be terrorists. These 'pseudo gangs,' as they were called, swiftly threw the Mau Mau on the defensive, either by befriending and then ambushing bands of fighters or by guiding bombers to the terrorists' camps. What worked in Kenya a half-century ago has a wonderful chance of undermining trust and recruitment among today's terror networks. Forming new pseudo gangs should not be difficult."

Arquilla added, for good measure: "If a confused young man from Marin County can join up with al-Qaeda [a reference to John Walker Lindh, the so-called American Talibani—ed.], think what professional operatives might do."
The 'Gang of Four'

Four of the names most often cited as promoters of programs like the "Goat Lab," the "Jedi Warriors," "Grill Flame," "Task Force Delta," and the "First Earth Battalion," have held top posts within the military intelligence and Special Operations commands:

Gen. Albert Stubblebine III was the head of U.S. Army Intelligence, INSCOM (Intelligence and Security Command), from 1981-84, during which time he launched a series of secret projects at Fort Meade, Md., involving remote viewing and other occult practices. General Stubblebine was, perhaps, the U.S. Army's most senior and loudest advocate of the full gamut of New Age warfare.

Gen. Peter Schoomaker, the current U.S. Army Chief of Staff, was Commanding General of the Joint Special Operations Command (1994-96), Commander of the United States Army Special Operations Command (1996-97), and Commander in Chief of the United States Special Operations Command (1997-2000). According to a well-researched book exposing the New Age penetration of the U.S. military, The Men Who Stare at Goats, by Jon Ronson (Simon & Schuster, New York, 2004), General Schoomaker has created a think-tank, under the sponsorship of the SOC office, to expand the application of these bizarre occult and para-normal operations throughout the U.S. Army, as his contribution to President George W. Bush's Global War on Terrorism (GWOT).

Gen. Wayne Downing also was the Commander-in-Chief of the U.S. Special Operations Command, and earlier directed all special operations during the December 1989 invasion of Panama, when some of the MindWar techniques were used, during the siege of the Vatican compound where Gen. Manuel Noriega had taken refuge. Following the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, Downing was named National Director and Deputy National Security Advisor for Combatting Terrorism in the Bush-Cheney White House, a post he held until June 2002.

According to military sources, General Downing left the White House as the result of a conflict with the Joint Chiefs of Staff, over plans for the invasion of Iraq. Downing had argued that Saddam Hussein could be overthrown by a massive "shock and awe" bombing campaign, followed by an invasion by a force of no more than 25,000 Special Forces troops. The "Downing Plan" was rejected by the Chiefs as "sheer madness," according to one senior military source familiar with the events.

Gen. William "Jerry" Boykin was the Commanding General of the U.S. Army Special Operations Command (Airborne) at Fort Bragg, N.C., from 1998-2000. Prior to that, he was the Commander of the elite counter-terror unit, Delta Force, from 1992-95. He was, in that capacity, in charge of the Special Forces units in Mogadishu, Somalia, during the famous 1993 "Black Hawk Down" incident, in which a number of Special Forces soldiers were beaten to death by warlords, and dragged through the streets of the city. Here, some of Lt. Col. John Alexander's non-lethal systems, including "Sticky Foam," were directly put to the combat test—and failed. From March 2000 until June 2003, General Boykin headed the U.S. Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center. He was then named Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence, a post he still holds. According to The New Yorker piece by Hersh, Boykin and his immediate boss, Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence Stephen Cambone, are directly in charge of the Special Operations search-and-kill squads touted by John Arquilla in his pseudo-gang promo.

Shortly after his appointment to the Deputy Undersecretary position, General Boykin drew fire, for remarks he delivered—in uniform—at a fundamentalist Christian church, in which he smeared Islam as a "Satanic" religion, and characterized the U.S. invasion of Iraq as a religious "crusade." He also said that "God had placed George W. Bush" into the Presidency, provoking serious debates about his own sanity and a Pentagon Inspector General's Office probe.
First Earth Battalion—Where It All Began

According to author Jon Ronson, in 1977, Lt. Col. Jim Channon, a Vietnam War combat veteran, wrote a letter to Lt. Gen. Walter Kerwin, then the U.S. Army Deputy Chief of Staff, proposing a fact-finding mission to unearth ways for the U.S. military to become more "cunning." Channon was given an open-ended assignment, a small Pentagon budget, and spent the next two years, by his own accounts, exploring the depths of the New Age movement, seeking military applications. Channon visited over 150 New Age facilities during his travels, with such countercultural names as: Gentle Wind, Integral Chuan Institute, Dayspring, Inc., The Center of Release and Integration, Postural Integration Reichian Rebirthing, the New Age Awareness Fair, Beyond Jogging, Aikido with Ki, the Biofeedback Center of Berkeley, and the Esalen Institute.

Channon particularly spent a good deal of time training under Michael Murphy, the co-founder of Esalen, which was the leading West Coast New Age psychological experimentation center, testing a wide array of mind-control methods, many involving the use of psychotropic drugs. Cultist mass murderer Charles Manson spent Aug. 5, 1969 at Esalen, just four days before he unleashed the "Helter Skelter" murder spree, for which he is still serving a lifetime jail sentence. Manson had been tracked, from his years in state prison, by military psychologists, who were studying behavioral patterns of what they dubbed the "pathologically violent five percent."

In 1979, Lt. Colonel Channon presented his findings to the Army brass in a 125-page document, complete with slides, called "The First Earth Battalion." While the document was laced with New Age vocabulary ("The First Earth is not mission oriented, it is potential oriented. That means we shall continue to look everywhere to find non-destructive methods of control."), Channon did propose an array of non-lethal techniques that would be soon adopted by the military, including the use of atonal noises as a form of combat psychological warfare, oriental martial arts and spiritualist instruction, and widespread experimentation with psychoelectronics and other means of debilitating enemy forces.

Channon's First Earth Battalion slide show was brought to General Stubblebine, the head of INSCOM, by Colonel Alexander, the author of the Military Review article on "The New Mental Battlefield," and, by 1981, Stubblebine established a secret "psychic spies unit" at Fort Meade, to test out such dubious techniques as remote viewing.

Two years later, General Stubblebine traveled to Fort Bragg, to pitch the Channon/Alexander program to the top leadership of the Special Operations community. By now, Stubblebine was convinced that, with the application of the right "mind over matter" techniques, he could personally walk through walls. As of this writing, he has not yet apparently succeeded. The Fort Bragg session, as he would later recount it to author Ronson, was a fiasco, and no action was taken to implement his program—or so Stubblebine thought.

In reality, Fort Bragg, by 1978, was already a hotbed of mind-war experimentation. Among the programs carried out at remote corners of the sprawling special operations base: the Goat Lab, where a team of New Age-trained Special Forces soldiers attempted to burst the hearts of goats, in an adjacent holding pen, through the power of psychic concentration. Veterinarians working on the base were horrified that Special Forces planes were airlifting goats up from Central America, without going through the normal Customs inspections. The goats were used in the training of combat medics. The goats would be shot, their limbs would be amputated, and, on some occasions, they were "de-bleated" by having their tongues cut out or their throats slashed. Then, they were subjected to the Goat Lab psychic warfare tests.

Keying off of Channon's blueprint, a Special Operations experimental team, dubbed "Jedi Warriors," after the Star Wars craze, were trained in a wide array of Eastern oriental martial arts and meditation techniques, combined with super-strenuous physical training programs. Outside "experts" like Dr. Jim Hardt, were brought in to train the "Jedi Warriors" to heighten their mental telepathy skills through Zen. Following Jim Channon's First Earth Battalion recipe, Stuart Heller, a New Age psychologist, who gave classes in stress control to corporate executives and officials at NASA, was brought in to provide similar schooling to the commandos. Channon had been introduced to Heller by Marilyn Ferguson, the author of the 1980 book The Aquarian Conspiracy, which peddled a New Age version of H.G. Wells' original Open Conspiracy concept of mass social control and cultural paradigm-shifts.

Not all the instructors of the "Jedi Warriors" were counterculture psychologists. Michael Echanis, a Green Beret who was badly wounded in Vietnam, but later developed advanced martial art skills, was brought in to train the "Jedi" in Hwa Rang Do, a combat technique that emphasized "invisibility." Echanis would be killed in 1978 in Nicaragua, while working as a mercenary for the regime of Anastasio Somoza. He had been the martial arts editor of Soldier of Fortune magazine, a well-known hiring hall for ex-soldiers and wanna-be's, seeking their fortunes as mercenaries.

By 1983, between the INSCOM program and the black box efforts at Fort Bragg, a fairly extensive network of military "spoon-benders" had been assembled, to the point that Task Force Delta was created, to stage quarterly meetings of as many as 300 military occult practitioners, at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. Col. Frank Burns launched Meta Network, one of the first "chat rooms" run through DARPA's (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) computer networking system, that would ultimately evolve into the internet.

The scheme to create a breed of Nietzschean "super soldiers" employed some very far-out characters, like the Israeli "spoon-bender" Uri Geller, a one-time stage magician, who was brought into the U.S. intelligence community under the original patronage of Dr. Andrija Puharich, a doctor who had been conducting work on parapsychology and telepathy for the U.S. Army's Psychological Warfare Division, since the 1950s. Dr. Puharich ran the Round Table Foundation of Electrobiology, which experimented with the manipulation of brain waves. He worked closely with Warren S. McCulloch, one of the founders of Cybernetics, and with the British intelligence counterculture guru, Aldous Huxley.
Wolfowitz Peddles Non-Lethal Warfare

According to author Ronson, in an October 2001 interview in London, Uri Geller confided to him that he had been "called back" to work for the U.S. government, immediately after the Sept. 11 attacks. It seems that the Bush Administration decided that the "psychic spies" could play a productive role in the hunt for Osama bin Laden, and in efforts to prevent a replay of the terror attacks on New York and Washington.

In fact, Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz had been a big advocate of some of Alexander and Channon's ideas, while serving as the chief policy advisor to then-Defense Secretary Dick Cheney in the George Herbert Walker Bush Pentagon. On March 10, 1991, Wolfowitz wrote a memo to Cheney, "Do We Need a Non-Lethal Defense Initiative?" in which he wrote, "A U.S. lead in non-lethal technologies will increase our options and reinforce our position in the post-Cold War world." While Wolfowitz apparently made no mention of the more bizarre practices promoted by Colonel Alexander, the guru of the non-lethal weaponry campaign, at the time of Wolfowitz's memo, Alexander had retired from active duty, and had been named head of the Non-Lethal Weapons Program at Los Alamos National Laboratory.

In 1990, Colonel Alexander had also come out with a book, The Warrior's Edge, in which he promoted a variety of unconventional methods to promote "human excellence and optimum performance" among soldiers, based on a course he taught in 1983 called Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP). Among the students in that course were then-Senator and later Vice President Albert Gore, Gen. Max Thurman, and General Stubblebine. By his own accounts, Alexander and Gore became close friends in 1983, and remain so today.

Colonel Alexander wrote that the goal of The Warrior's Edge was to "unlock the door to the extraordinary human potentials inherent in each of us. To do this, we, like governments around the world, must take a fresh look at non-traditional methods of affecting reality. We must raise human consciousness of the potential power of the individual body/mind system—the power to manipulate reality. We must be willing to retake control of our past, present, and ultimately, our future."

Uri Geller was not the only "psychic warrior" called back to government service after 9/11. Jim Channon, the original First Earth Battalion New Age super-soldier, according to author Ronson, began holding a series of meetings in early 2004 with the new Army Chief of Staff, Gen. Pete Schoomaker. Schoomaker had been commander of Special Forces at Fort Bragg when the "Goat Lab" and "Jedi Warrior" programs were under way. Ronson wrote that "The rumor was that General Schoomaker was considering bringing Jim back from retirement to create, or contribute to, a new and secret think-tank, designed to encourage the army to take their minds further and further outside the mainstream." Ronson described it as a revival of Task Force Delta. Ronson soon received an e-mail from Channon, confirming the rumor, and explaining that the think-tank idea had been floated "because Rumsfeld has now openly asked for creative input on the war on terrorism ... mmmm." Channon elaborated:

"The Army has requested my services to teach the most highly selected Majors. The First Earth Battalion is the teaching exemplar of choice. I have done that in the presence of General Pete Schoomaker.... I am in contact with players who are or have recently been in Afghanistan and Iraq. I have sent in exit strategy plans based on Earth Battalion ideas. I talk weekly with a member of a stress control battalion in Iraq who carries the manual and uses it to inform his teammates of their potential service contributions...."
Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib ... and al-Qa-im

The International Committee of the Red Cross has published a series of studies and sponsored several international conventions, to evaluate just how "non-lethal" the non-lethal technologies are that have been promoted by Alexander, Channon, and their ilk. According to a 1998 ICRC presentation before the European Parliament, non-lethal weapons are simply defined as weapons with a less-than 25% fatality rate. Such now widely used non-lethal weapons as lasers, extremely low frequency (ELF) weapons, and various chemical, biological, and audio stun weapons, can cause permanent damage, such as blindness, deafness, and destruction of gastrointestinal systems, which, the ICRC insists, require serious study and a new set of international treaties and conventions.

Indeed, according to both Ronson and The New Yorker writer Jane Mayer, many of the torture techniques employed at Guantanamo Bay, at Abu Ghraib, and at such less-well-known locales as al-Qa-im near the Syrian border in Iraq, are based on Channon and Alexander's non-lethal schemes, but with lethal consequences in some cases.

Ronson confirmed that a facility at al-Qa-im was conducting "interrogations" of captured Iraqi insurgents, after playing, non-stop, for days at a time, the theme song from Barney the Purple Dinosaur, "I Love You." Ronson is convinced that the music was a cover for subliminal frequencies, very high- or very low-frequency sounds that affect brain functioning, to break prisoners' resistance. The prisoners were kept in metal shipping containers in the scorching sun, blindfolded and in crouching positions, surrounded by barbed wire, with the music (and subliminals) blaring.

In an article published in the July 11-18, 2005 issue of The New Yorker, Mayer revealed that Special Forces psychologists from the Survival, Evasion, Resistance, and Escape (SERE) program at the JFK Special Warfare School at Fort Bragg had been brought to Guantanamo Bay, to oversee interrogation strategies. The SERE psychologists formed a core of the Behavioral Science Consultation Teams (BSCT, or "Biscuits") that "reverse engineered" the techniques that were used on Special Forces soldiers, to train them to survive enemy torture/interrogations, as part of the advanced special warfare program at Fort Bragg.

Jim Channon confirmed, in another e-mail exchange with author Ronson, that many of the ideas adopted by the Army Intelligence interrogators at Guantanamo, Abu Ghraib and al-Qa-im came right out of his First Earth Battalion blueprint.
'Living Embodiment' of First Earth Battalion

At one point in his probe of the military's spoon-benders, author Jon Ronson asked Stuart Heller, the friend of Marilyn Ferguson and Jim Channon, if he could name one soldier who was "the living embodiment" of the First Earth Battalion. Without a second thought, Heller replied: "Bert Rodriguez." "Bert's one of the most spiritual guys I've ever met," Heller told Ronson. "No. Spiritual is the wrong word. He's occultic. He's like a walking embodiment of death. He can stop you at a distance. He can influence physical events just with his mind. If he catches your attention he can stop you without touching you."

As Jon Ronson reported, "In April 2001, Bert Rodriguez took on a new student. His name was Ziad Jarrah. Ziad just turned up at the US 1 Fitness Center one day and said he had heard that Bert was good. Why Ziad chose Bert, of all the martial arts instructors scattered around the Florida shoreline, is a matter of speculation. Maybe Bert's uniquely occultic reputation preceded him, or perhaps it was Bert's military connections. Plus, Bert had once taught the head of security for a Saudi prince. Maybe that was it."

Ziad Jarrah presented himself as a Lebanese businessman, who traveled a great deal and wanted to protect himself. "I liked Ziad a lot," Rodriguez later told Ronson. "He was very humble, very quiet. He was in good shape. Very diligent." Rodriguez taught Jarrah "the choke hold and the kamikaze spirit. You need a code you'd die for, a do-or-die desire." Rodriguez added, "Ziad was like Luke Skywalker. You know when Luke walks the invisible path? You have to believe it's there. And if you do believe it it is there. Yeah, Ziad believed it. He was like Luke Skywalker."

Rodriguez trained Ziad Jarrah for six months, and gave him copies of several knife-fighting books he had written. Jarrah shared them with a friend, Marwan al-Shehhi, who boarded with him at the Panther Motel and Apartments in Deerfield Beach, Fla.

On Sept. 11, 2001, Ziad Jarrah took control of United Airlines flight 93, and crashed it in a field in Pennsylvania. Marwan al-Shehhi commandeered United Airlines flight 175 and crashed it into the South Tower of the World Trade Center in lower Manhattan.

From From Psy-Ops to Mindwars : Satanic Subversion of the U.S. Military

Satanic Subversion of the U.S. Military

by Jeffrey Steinberg



On Feb. 5, 1999, in U.S. District Court in Lincoln, Nebraska, an extraordinary hearing occurred in Paul A. Bonacci v. Lawrence E. King, a civil action in which the plaintiff charged that he had been ritualistically abused by the defendant, as part of a nationwide pedophile ring linked to powerful political figures in Washington and to elements of the U.S. military and intelligence establishment. Three weeks later, on Feb. 27, Judge Warren K. Urbom ordered King, who is currently in Federal prison, to pay $1 million in damages to Bonacci, in what Bonacci's attorney John DeCamp said was a clear signal that "the evidence presented was credible."

During the Feb. 5 hearing, Noreen Gosch stunned the court with sworn testimony linking U.S. Army Lt. Col. Michael Aquino (ret.) to the nationwide pedophile ring. Her son, Johnny, then 12 years old, was kidnapped off the streets of West Des Moines, Iowa, on Sept. 5, 1982, while he was doing his early-morning newspaper deliveries. Since his kidnapping, she has devoted all of her time and resources to finding her son, and to exposing the dangers that millions of children in America face from this hideous, literally Satanic underground of ritualistic deviants.

"We have investigated, we have talked to so far 35 victims of this said organization that took my son and is responsible for what happened to Paul, and they can verify everything that has happened," she told the court.

"What this story involves is an elaborate function, I will say, that was an offshoot of a government program. The MK-Ultra program was developed in the 1950s by the CIA. It was used to help spy on other countries during the Cold War because they felt that the other countries were spying on us.

"It was very successful. They could do it very well."

Then, the Aquino bombshell: "Well, then there was a man by the name of Michael Aquino. He was in the military. He had top Pentagon clearances. He was a pedophile. He was a Satanist. He's founded the Temple of Set. And he was a close friend of Anton LaVey. The two of them were very active in ritualistic sexual abuse. And they deferred funding from this government program to use [in] this experimentation on children.

"Where they deliberately split off the personalities of these children into multiples, so that when they're questioned or put under oath or questioned under lie detector, that unless the operator knows how to question a multiple-personality disorder, they turn up with no evidence."

She continued: "They used these kids to sexually compromise politicians or anyone else they wish to have control of. This sounds so far out and so bizarre I had trouble accepting it in the beginning myself until I was presented with the data. We have the proof. In black and white."

Under questioning from DeCamp, Gosch reported: "I know that Michael Aquino has been in Iowa. I know that Michael Aquino has been to Offutt Air Force Base [a Strategic Air Command base, near Omaha, which was linked to King's activities]. I know that he has had contact with many of these children."

Paul Bonacci, who was simultaneously a victim and a member of the nationwide pedophile crime syndicate, has subsequently identified Aquino as the man who ordered the kidnapping of Johnny Gosch. In his Feb. 5 testimony, Bonacci referred to the mastermind of the Gosch abduction as "the Colonel."

A second witness who testified at the Feb. 5 hearing, Rusty Nelson, was King's personal photographer. He later described to EIR another incident which linked King to Aquino, while the Army special forces officer was still on active reserve duty. Some time in the late 1980s, Nelson was with King at a posh hotel in downtown Minneapolis, when he personally saw King turn over a suitcase full of cash and bearer-bonds to "the Colonel," whom he later positively identified as Aquino. According to Nelson, King told him that the suitcase of cash and bonds was earmarked for the Nicaraguan Contras, and that "the Colonel" was part of the covert Contra support apparatus, otherwise associated with Lt. Col. Oliver North, Vice President George Bush, and the "secret parallel government" that they ran from the White House.

Just who is Lt. Col. Michael Aquino (ret.), and what does the evidence revealed in a Nebraska court hearing say about the current state of affairs inside the U.S. military? Is the Aquino case some kind of weird aberration that slipped off the Pentagon radar screen?

Not in the least.
Aquino, Satan, and the U.S. Military

Throughout much of the 1980s, Aquino was at the center of a controversy involving the Pentagon's acquiescence to outright Satanic practices inside the military services. Aquino was also a prime suspect in a series of pedophile scandals involving the sexual abuse of hundreds of children, including the children of military personnel serving at the Presidio U.S. Army station in the San Francisco Bay Area. Furthermore, even as Aquino was being investigated by Army Criminal Investigation Division officers for involvement in the pedophile cases, he retained highest-level security clearances, and was involved in pioneering work in military psychological operations ("psy-ops").

On Aug. 14, 1987, San Francisco police raided Aquino's Russian Hill home, which he shared with his wife Lilith. The raid was in response to allegations that the house had been the scene of a brutal rape of a four-year-old girl. The principal suspect in the rape, a Baptist minister named Gary Hambright, was indicted in September 1987 on charges that he committed "lewd and lascivious acts" with six boys and four girls, ranging in age from three to seven years, during September-October 1986. At the time of the alleged sex crimes, Hambright was employed at a child care center on the U.S. Army base at Presidio. At the time of Hambright's indictment, the San Francisco police charged that he was involved in at least 58 separate incidents of child sexual abuse.

According to an article in the Oct. 30, 1987 San Francisco Examiner, one of the victims had identified Aquino and his wife as participants in the child rape. According to the victim, the Aquinos had filmed scenes of the child being fondled by Hambright in a bathtub. The child's description of the house, which was also the headquarters of Aquino's Satanic Temple of Set, was so detailed, that police were able to obtain a search warrant. During the raid, they confiscated 38 videotapes, photo negatives, and other evidence that the home had been the hub of a pedophile ring, operating in and around U.S. military bases.

Aquino and his wife were never indicted in the incident. Aquino claimed that he had been in Washington at the time, enrolled in a year-long reserve officers course at the National Defense University, although he did admit that he made frequent visits back to the Bay Area and to his church/home. The public flap over the Hambright indictment did prompt the U.S. Army to transfer Aquino from the Presidio, where he was the deputy director of reserve training, to the U.S. Army Reserve Personnel Center in St. Louis.

On April 19, 1988, the ten-count indictment against Hambright was dropped by U.S. Attorney Joseph Russoniello, on the grounds that, while there was clear evidence of child abuse (six of the children contracted the venereal disease, chlamydia), there was insufficient evidence to link Hambright (or the Aquinos) to the crimes. Parents of several of the victims charged that Russoniello's actions proved that "the Federal system has broken down in not being able to protect the rights of citizens age three to eight."

Russoniello would later be implicated in efforts to cover up the links between the Nicaraguan Contras and South American cocaine-trafficking organizations, raising deeper questions about whether the decision not to prosecute Hambright and Aquino had "national security implications."

Indeed, on April 22, 1989, the U.S. Army sent letters to the parents of at least 56 of the children believed to have been molested by Hambright, urging them to have their children tested for the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), because Hambright, a former daycare center worker, was reported to be a carrier.

On May 13, 1989, the San Jose Mercury reported that Aquino and his wife had been recently questioned by Army investigators about charges of child molestation by the couple in two northern California counties, Sonoma and Mendocino. A 9-year-old girl in Santa Rosa, California, and an 11-year-old boy in Fort Bragg, also in California, separately identified Aquino as the rapist in a series of 1985 incidents, after they had seen him on television.
Softies on Satan

When the San Francisco Chronicle contacted Army officials at the Presidio to find out if Aquino's security clearances had been lifted as the result of the pedophile investigations, the reporters were referred to the Pentagon, where Army spokesman Maj. Greg Rixon told them: "The question is whether he is trustworthy or can do the job. There is nothing that would indicate in this case that there is any problem we should be concerned about."

Indeed, the Pentagon had already given its de facto blessings to Aquino's long-standing public association with the Church of Satan and his own successor "church," the Temple of Set. This, despite the fact that Aquino's Satanic activities involved overt support for neo-Nazi movements in the United States and Europe. On Oct. 10, 1983, while travelling in West Germany on "official NATO business," Aquino had staged a Satanic "working" at the Wewelsburg Castle in Bavaria. Aquino wrote a lengthy account of the ritual, in which he invoked Nazi SS chief Heinrich Himmler: "As the Wewelsburg was conceived by Heinrich Himmler to be the 'Mittelpunkt der Welt' ('Middle of the World'), and as the focus of the Hall of the Dead was to be the Gate of that Center, to summon the Powers of Darkness at their most powerful locus."

As early as April 1978, the U.S. Army had circulated A Handbook for Chaplains "to facilitate the provision of religious activities." Both the Church of Satan and the Temple of Set were listed among the "other" religions to be tolerated inside the U.S. military. A section of the handbook dealing with Satanism stated, "Often confused with witchcraft, Satanism is the worship of Satan (also known as Baphomet or Lucifer). Classical Satanism, often involving 'black masses,' human sacrifices, and other sacrilegious or illegal acts, is now rare. Modern Satanism is based on both the knowledge of ritual magick and the 'anti-establishment' mood of the 1960s. It is related to classical Satanism more in image than substance, and generally focuses on 'rational self-interest with ritualistic trappings.' "

Not so fast! In 1982, the Temple of Set fissured over the issue of Aquino's emphasis on Nazism. One leader, Ronald K. Barrett, shortly after his expulsion, wrote that Aquino had "taken the Temple of Set in an explicitly Satanic direction, with strong overtones of German National Socialist Nazi occultism.... One fatality has occurred within the Temple membership during the period covered, May 1982-July 1983."

The handbook quoted "Nine Satanic Statements" from the Church of Satan, without comment. "Statement Seven," as quoted in the handbook, read, "Satan represents man as just another animal, sometimes better, more often worse than those that walk on all fours, who, because of his 'divine and intellectual development' has become the most vicious animal of all."
From 'Psyops' to 'Mindwars'

Aquino's steady rise up the hierarchy of the Satanic world closely paralleled his career advances inside the U.S. military. According to an official biography circulated by the Temple of Set, "Dr. Aquino is High Priest and chief executive officer of the Temple of Set, the nation's principal Satanic church, in which he holds the degree of Ipissimus VI. He joined the original Church of Satan in 1969, becoming one of its chief officials by 1975 when the Temple of Set was founded. In his secular profession he is a Lieutenant Colonel, Military Intelligence, U.S. Army, and is qualified as a Special Forces officer, Civil Affairs officer, and Defense Attaché. He is a graduate of the Command and General Staff College, the National Defense University and the Defense Intelligence College, and the State Department's Foreign Service Institute."

Indeed, a more detailed curriculum vitae that Aquino provided to EIR, dated March 1989, claimed that he had gotten his doctorate at the University of California at Santa Barbara in 1980, with his dissertation on "The Neutron Bomb." He listed 16 separate military schools that he attended during 1968-87, including advanced courses in "Psychological Operations" at the JFK Special Warfare Center at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, and "Strategic Intelligence" at the Defense Intelligence College, at Bolling Air Force Base in Washington, D.C.

Aquino was deeply involved in what has been called the "revolution in military affairs" ("RMA"), the introduction of the most kooky "Third Wave," "New Age" ideas into military long-range planning, which introduced such notions as "information warfare" and "cyber-warfare" into the Pentagon's lexicon.

In the early 1980s, at the same time that Heidi and Alvin Toffler were spinning their Tavistock "Third Wave" utopian claptrap to some top Air Force brass, Aquino and another U.S. Army colonel, Paul Vallely, were co-authoring an article for Military Review. Although the article was never published in the journal, the piece was widely circulated among military planners, and was distributed by Aquino's Temple of Set. The article, titled "From PSYOP to Mindwar: The Psychology of Victory," endorsed some of the ideas published in a 1980 Military Review article by Lt. Col. John Alexander, an affiliate of the Stanford Research Institute, a hotbed of Tavistock Institute and Frankfurt School "New Age" social engineering.

Aquino and Vallely called for an explicitly Nietzschean form of warfare, which they dubbed "mindwar." "Like the sword Excalibur," they wrote, "we have but to reach out and seize this tool; and it can transform the world for us if we have but the courage and the integrity to guide civilization with it. If we do not accept Excalibur, then we relinquish our ability to inspire foreign cultures with our morality. If they then devise moralities unsatisfactory to us, we have no choice but to fight them on a more brutish level."

And what is "mindwar?" "The term is harsh and fear-inspiring," Aquino wrote. "And it should be: It is a term of attack and victory—not one of rationalization and coaxing and conciliation. The enemy may be offended by it; that is quite all right as long as he is defeated by it. A definition is offered: Mindwar is the deliberate, aggressive convincing of all participants in a war that we will win that war."

For Aquino, "mindwar" is a permanent state of strategic psychological warfare against the populations of friend and foe nations alike. "In its strategic context, mindwar must reach out to friends, enemies and neutrals alike across the globe ... through the media possessed by the United States which have the capabilities to reach virtually all people on the face of the Earth. These media are, of course, the electronic media—television and radio. State of the art developments in satellite communication, video recording techniques, and laser and optical transmission of broadcasts make possible a penetration of the minds of the world such as would have been inconceivable just a few years ago." Above all else, Aquino argues, mindwar must target the population of the United States, "by denying enemy propaganda access to our people, and by explaining and emphasizing to our people the rationale for our national interest.... Rather it states a whole truth that, if it does not now exist, will be forced into existence by the will of the United States."

Reprinted from EIR, July 2, 1999.

UNIFORM CIVIL CODE : Chatter between Mullah Kaleem Khwaja - Feminist- Marxist

FOIL CHATTER on UNIFORM CIVIL CODE , between 1. Kaleem Khwaja 2. Leftist Feminist Ms. Kamala Vishweshwaran 3. Rajashakar Ramakrishna ( FOIL moderator)




FROM : Kamala Visweswaran ( a Leftist Feminist )

The whole polygamy/bigamy issue is such a no starter. The majority of bigamous marriages are within the Hindu community. This is well-documented. See "The Supreme Court, The Media and the UCC Debate" by Flavia. Courts have used section 3(1)(a) of the 1986 Muslim Women's Act for "fair and reasonable maintainence" to award sums such as rs. 85,000 or 3 lakhs to women for maintenence--far more than allowed under section 125 of the CrPC.

I also recommend Flavia's book, "Gender, Law and Colonialism" for an understanding of how many aspects of Islamic law were more progressive on women's rights (rts to property, divorce, maintence refusal of marriage) at a time when Hindu and other Indian women lacked such rights. Islam has always had a conception of women's rights--the current debate is whether they are "equal." Even so, w/regard to Muslim women not having personal property rights, the institution of personal waqf (called hubus in the Maghreb), could be used by fathers to endow daughters with more property. the disinheriting of daughters was one of the complaints Muslims had against the British when it made personal waqf illegal in the late 19th century, and became one of the issues leading to formation of the Muslim League (see Gail Minault's work).

I am amazed at how much we all think we know about Islam and Muslim law; how quickly we forget the colonial roots of the UCC issue, and how incipient a Hindu majoritarian view is on this list.

The law has never been, and is not neutral. Imposing "equality" on a deeply asymmetrical situation can lead to further inequality. The fears of minority communities that a UCC will de facto be a reformed Hindu Code are well founded (people like Bina Aggarwal have been known to argue this) and need to be taken seriously. When the left argues rigidly for the UCC without taking this into account, it becomes a part of the Hindu majoritarianism of the Right.

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

FROM : KALEEM KHWAJA

Dear Kamala,

Thanks for articulating that UCC will actually end up imposing the Hindu Code bill on Muslims and Christians. With 85% Hindus, only 14% Muslims and 3% Christians, the UCC is most likely to give no quarter to ANY elements of Sharia (no matter how enlightened an interpretation) or elements from the Christian Personal Laws. As it is, we hear often that Sharia is not Indian hence it has no place in Indian UCC. Just as you see that in North India under the long Congress rule, Urdu has been almost completely eliminated from all schools and has been replaced by Hindi.


Because of the BJP's very overt communalism and attempts to make Muslims into second class citizens, some well meaning Indians think of the Congress party in positive terms. But the fact remains that a significant part of the Congress party wants to impose Hindu culture/ethos on Muslims and Christians. They too think of the Hindu way of life as the Indian way of life. They too think that to demonstrate their nationalism, Indian Muslims should adopt the non-religious elements of the Hindu way of life.


It is a tragedy that most Leftists, because of their strong dislike of religion, think of Sharia as if it is a scourge, and do not want to even look at it. The point remains that if the Left is interested in achieving gender justice for Muslim women, along with justice for the entire Muslim community, they should seriously consider letting the Muslim Personal Law remain, yet reform it to the maximum limit to provide equitable treatment for women. This is possible. We should try to understand that we are trying to get justice for Muslim women; we are not trying to take Islamic practices out of the lives of Muslims.

Have the Congress party and Communist party govts in states, who never tire of condemning "madarasas" as dens of Muslim fanaticisms, ever tried to give financial help to these impoverished schools for poor Muslims, so that teaching of mathematics, science, English can be included in their curriculum? People should realize that the only option for the large number of poor Muslims (50% of the population) to madarsas is illiteracy.


In real terms the polygamy issue in the Indian Muslim community is nothing but a bogey. In vast parts of North India where I have wide acquaintances I hardly ever hear of a Muslim man having more than one wife. While it is allowed by Sharia, today only a miniscule number of Indian Muslims practice it. BJP has drummed this non-issue into the consciousness of Hindus so much that most of them think that polygamy is prevalent among Muslims and thus the Muslim population is mushrooming in India. So this is one real reform that has happened in the Indian Muslim community in the last 60 years.


I am afraid that a strident UCC campaign may in reality cause serious harm to the prospects for reform of the Muslim Personal Law, by again handing over a "Islam in danger" issue to the obscurantists in the Muslim community. That will make the job of Muslim reformers harder. And we know that political parties are interested much more in votes than in reforming Personal Laws.

Kaleem Kawaja


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

SHEKER RAMAKRISHNA ( FOIL Moderator)

On 10 Jul 2005 at 11:58, Kaleem Kawaja wrote:

> the UCC is most likely to give no quarter to ANY elements of Sharia
> (no matter how enlightened an interpretation) or elements from the
> Christian Personal Laws.

Dear Kaleem:

I think your concerns are very justified. The question is whether they can be addressed or not. One approach by women's organizations has been for laws to give equal rights to women, cutting across religions. For instance, equal share in inheritance of intestate property, equal rights in filing for divorce, no polygamy. One thing that will help the debate is if you can articulate which specific aspects of Sharia that you consider enlightened might be threatened by UCC. Besides doing that, please also take the three cases I gave above. Would you have a problem with any of them?

> Just as you see that in North India under the long Congress rule,
> Urdu has been almost completely eliminated from all schools and has
> been replaced by Hindi.

I agree. What has happened to Urdu is quite tragic. When I visited Bhopal a few years back, I had been asked by people in Madras to get some science books for children in Urdu. I found that even Eklavya had no books in Urdu. I learned subsequently that Urdu literacy among young Muslims is quite low; they know Devanagari and not Urdu script, I was told. Is this so?

> The point remains that if the Left is interested in achieving
> gender justice for Muslim women, along with justice for the entire
> Muslim community, they should seriously consider letting the Muslim
> Personal Law remain, yet reform it to the maximum limit to provide
> equitable treatment for women. This is possible.

I am glad you think it is possible, but what is the evidence? I have asked repeatedly what change favorable to women has been made in Muslim Personal Law since 1947. It does not appear that there has been any. So it is a failed policy. What is the reason for your hope beyond that you are afraid of the alternatives?

> In real terms the polygamy issue in the Indian Muslim community is
> nothing but a bogey. In vast parts of North India where I have
> wide acquaintances I hardly ever hear of a Muslim man having more
> than one wife. While it is allowed by Sharia, today only a
> miniscule number of Indian Muslims practice it. BJP has drummed
> this non-issue into the consciousness of Hindus

If this is a non-issue, what is the problem in banning polygamy? Believe me, the Hindutva people are not in favor of banning polygamy, so it will not be any sort of a victory for BJP to ban polygamy.

> I am afraid that a strident UCC campaign may in reality
> cause serious harm to the prospects for reform of the Muslim
> Personal Law, by again handing over a "Islam in danger" issue to
> the obscurantists in the Muslim community.

As I wrote above, where is the evidence that there is any change happening in Muslim Personal Law? The men who call the shots seem to think that Sharia as understood in 1937 was perfectly Quranic then and needs no change.

Unless you can show that there is reason for hope, staying with Muslim Personal Law accomplishes continued subjugation of Muslim women. That is the one clear consequence. Everything else is speculation.

Regards.

Sekhar

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

"Kamala Visweswaran"
-------------------------------------------------------------

Dear Kaleem,

I am in agreement with much of what you say; the points about madrassa education are well-taken. Of course Congress ties with the Sangh and Hindu Maha Sabha go back to the '20s and 30s because the Sangh deliberately moved into Congress youth organizations and sent several of its people to stand for office w/in the Congress Party. Nevertheless, I am not sure Congress wants to "impose" Hindu culture or religion, as much as "Hinduism" forms the taken for granted standard against which everything is measured. In this the members of Left and other parties are as culpable as Congress and the BJP for holding a majoritarian worldview.

Best wishes,
Kamala

Imrana : Saeed Naqvi distorting the truth or playing on technicalities ?

This is the second time, Saeed Naqvi has claimed that neither Imrana was raped, nor was there a fatwa. Is he truthful? Or is he distorting the truth? Here is his latest column on Indian Express. is in bold.

Click to read ArticleHis claim on Imrana is "In Charthwal village in Muzaffarnagar district, Ali Mohammad rapes Imrana, his daughter-in-law, and a helpful fatwa from Deoband enables him to keep her as his wife. For weeks the story dominates the channels and front pages. It is now confirmed that neither was there a rape nor a fatwa. No corrections are issued. Meanwhile, news desks have been alerted to the idea that stories of fatwas embarrassing to the Muslims has a growing audience. "



Court records definitely indicate that a charge was filed. Whether it was a fatwa or a 'ruling' is a technicality but the important point, which I made in my Wall Street Journal is that neither a fatwa not the Sharia itself has any legal standing in a country that has a constitution and the courts.

We should not accept or praise a fatwa simply because it is favorable to us. Any fatwa undermines the state.

Eminent scholar Dr.K.Elst has commented that "Secularist Saeed Naqvi tries to make us believe that the whole Indian press, together with international commentators from Salman Rushdie to NS Rajaram, have all been fooled by a communalist disinformation campaign false alleging that Imrana suffered "rape" and that the injunction to her to marry the culprit was a "fatwa". Probably he is playing on technicalities.

A "fatwa" is an advice given by a jurisconsult (mufti) in reply to a question. This is distinct from a judgment given by a qazi in a shari'a court. Neither have a place in India's legal system (though anyone including a mufti is of course free to give an opinion), but both will be taken as authoritative by devout Muslims. From the news I heard, it was indeed a fatwa, not a court ruling, but I am not too sure. Naqvi may be right, but the distinction is quite immaterial.

As for "rape", it is of course a unique feature of Islamic jurisprudence that it doesn't recognize rape in most cases where others would. A woman who cries "rape" has ipso facto admitted having had illicit sex; that much seems indisputed in the case of Imrana and her father-in-law. She deserves stoning, but the lawmen in their mercy have left open an alternative: marrying the illicit partner to make the act licit retro-actively (somewhat like in medieval Europe, where a rapist could be saved from the gallows if the girl agreed to marry him). The sex act only becomes rape if four male witnesses testify to that; failing this, calling it rape amounts to slandering the man, which in the case of a Muslim is a serious offence in itself. So perhaps at some point in the proceedings Imrana may have agreed to withdraw the characterization "rape", redefining the act as mere illicit sex between consenting adults. On such a perverse technicality, Naqvi could indeed build a plea that no rape has taken place. Which at once goes to show what a perverse crypto-Islamist that showboy "progressive Muslim" really is. "



In a recent letter to Wall Street Journal , published on Aug 24, 2005 , commenting on article 'Unfree under Islam' by Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Sharia Dr.N S Rajaram said "Shariah, like the Code of Hammurabi or the Mosaic Law, is a subject for academic study. It has no place in the modern world in countries that already have a constitution and a legal system. Nonetheless, Muslim organizations never accept the legitimacy of secular law as the law of the land." . And Criticised Sharia as " a medieval monstrosity that has no place in a modern society."

Dr.Rajaram further said , the dialog shoule be on "humanistic grounds" , rather than "theological grounds" ."I suggest that when we take on these Islamists we avoid engaging them on theological grounds but hold them to account on humanistic grounds. By trying to argue theology with them we find ourselves on their turf. That is exactly what a theologian wants-- a maulvi or a mufti or anyone else. A theologian, of whatever stripe, will never concede a debate. He will just keep you going round in cirlces. "

" I mention this because Hindus frequently fall into the trap of saying that Muslims should be true to the teachings of Islam and what they are doing is against the true teachings of Islam. It is not our job to make them true Muslims. "

"Theology, no less than technology is man-made. We don't invoke scripture to condemn nuclear attacks. So why should we invoke scripture to condemn outrages like the Imrana case. It is inhumane-- as simple as that and also illegal. If the Sharia makes it legitimate, well then there is something wrong with the Sharat. "

Statement by Mr.Ashok Chowgule , President of VHP Maharastra, commenting on the article by Sayeed Naqvi said "Equally it is the responsibility of the newspaper not to print articles with such falsehoods. If they do they are equally responsible for spreading the lies. "

"It is when persons who are alleged to be intellectuals indulge in vicious propaganda, the Muslim community has a major problem. The obscurantist are able to indulge in their communalism because there is no one who can check them. And it is these same intellectuals who will be the loudest in whining that the Muslim community is backward, etc. I have said in the past that if the Muslim community does progress, the ones who will be most adversely affected are these intellectuals. "





LETTER By N S Rajaram to WSJ on Sharia


Shariah, like the Code of Hammurabi or the Mosaic Law, is a subject for academic study. It has no place in the modern world in countries that already have a constitution and a legal system. Nonetheless, Muslim organizations never accept the legitimacy of secular law as the law of the land.

The same phenomenon manifested itself in India in the notorious Imrana case when a young Muslim woman was raped by her father-in-law. He was found guilty by the courts, but a self-appointed body calling itself the Muslim Personal Law Board issued a ruling that Imrana was "haram" (impure) and therefore her marriage was invalid. Adding insult to injury, it also ruled that Imrana should leave her husband and children and live with her rapist father-in-law as one of his wives.

This is an example of Sharia in action. It is a medieval monstrosity that has no place in a modern society.

N.S. Rajaram
Bangalore, India







Read Kaleem Khwaja on Sharia

August 26, 2005

The Forgotten Spy - Must Read

The Rediff Special/Shobha Warrier

August 26, 2005



As one enters the house of Saraswathy Rajamani, one is struck by the number of photographs of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose. They are everywhere, on the wall, on the table, inside the cabinet. For someone like her, it is quite understandable -- because not everyone spends her teenage years working for Netaji or for the Indian National Army -- that too as a spy.

After spending her growing years fighting courageously, often risking her own life, Saraswathy lives a lonely life of neglect and penury.

Till recently she had been living in a small, dilapidated, rented room. Thanks to Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa, she has a house now, albeit an old one in a colony.

Her sad story that appeared in a newspaper caught the chief minister's attention, and she was immediately allotted a house and a grant. However, it was unfortunate that it took so long for a government to notice a person who fought for India's freedom.

When I entered her house, Saraswathy was in no mood to talk. She was breathless -- a result of three previous heart attacks. A few visitors were just leaving.

"I have grown old and tired, and the family who visited me just now was very close to me but I couldn't remember who they are. My mind is forgetting everything; faces, voices and names." Her voice trailed off. She says she is 83. I think she's possibly 78, if she left the INA in 1945 as an eighteen year old.

A few minutes later, she started talking again; about her meeting with Mahatma Gandhi, her days with the INA, her work as a spy for the INA, etc.

Though frail and restricted to a liquid diet, her tired mind is agile enough to take a trip back through the years, images became clearer and she started recounting her life in Burma.

Let's go back about seventy years. Mahatma Gandhi was paying a visit to one of the richest Indians in Rangoon, Burma (now Myanmar). The man who owned a gold mine and his entire household gathered together to meet the Mahatma. Save one 10-year-old girl. The family looked for her, Rajamani, everywhere. The little girl was in the garden practising shooting. The Mahatma was shocked to see such a small girl play with a gun.

"Don't play with the gun, little girl," he told her.

"I am practising shooting so that I can kill the British," said she without even looking at him.

"Violence is not good, girl. We are fighting the British through non-violent ways. You should also do that," the Mahatma urged.

"We shoot and kill the looters, don't we? The British are looting India, and I am going to shoot at least one Britisher when I grow up," she would have none of the non-violence talk from the Mahatma.

As she grew up, she started hearing a lot about Netaji, and became very enamoured of him. Her chance to meet him and listen to his speech came only six years later when she was 16. Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose was speaking about liberating India. Unlike the Mahatma, Netaji urged everyone to take up arms and fight the British.

Rajamani was so impressed with his speech that when he asked the audience to donate, she removed all her gold and diamond jewellery and gave them to the Indian National Army. A young girl donating all her expensive jewellery did not fail to attract the attention of Netaji. On enquiry, he came to know that she was the daughter of one of the wealthiest Indians in Burma.

The very next day, Netaji arrived at her residence to return all the jewellery. He told her father, "Due to her innocence, she gave away all her jewellery. So, I have come to return it."

While her father smiled, an angry Rajamani said, "They are not my father's, they are mine. I gave all of them to you, and I will not take them back."

So stubborn was the girl that Netaji could not but admire her determination. "You have the wisdom only Goddess Saraswathi has. Lakshmi (money) comes and goes but not Saraswathi. So I name you Saraswathi."

Rajamani became Saraswathi Rajamani from that day onwards. Immediately, she urged Netaji to recruit her in his army.

Rajamani and five of her friends became members of the Indian National Army the following day. Netaji asked them to work as spies for the INA. All the girls dressed themselves as boys and worked in the camps and houses of British officers. For the next two years, they were boy spies.

"As a boy, my name was Mani. We diligently listened to all the conversation the British officers had and later on, all five of us discussed the information we had collected, and then conveyed it to Netaji. Those were very exciting days," said Rajamani, the excitement coming through even in her feeble voice.

The exciting days included a brush with death too. The instruction to them was that if they were caught by the British, they should immediately shoot themselves. But before one girl could do that, she was caught. Rajamani decided to do the rescue act.

"I went to the den as a dancer, drugged the Britishers and rescued my friend. As we were running for our lives, a Britisher shot at my right leg. I ran with my leg bleeding. Both of us climbed onto a tree and sat there for three days. Only on the fourth day, we came down. Netaji was so happy with our bravery that he saluted us and congratulated us several times. I was given a medal by the Japanese emperor himself," recounted a proud Rajamani.

Came the end of World War II. The Allies won the war, and Netaji decided to disband the INA. He asked all its members to return. Saraswathy Rajamani and her family gave away everything they had including the gold mines and made their way to India.

"Please don't ask what happened to us after we came back to India, and how we lived. I don't like to think or talk about it," Rajamani said firmly.

She closed her eyes for some time and then said in a low voice, "A hand that has only given things to people accepted money from the government a few days ago. I was in such dire straits that I could do only that."

She was referring to the money and the house donated to her by the Tamil Nadu government. Though she is very grateful to the chief minister, the very thought that what she accepted was charity, for the first time in her long life, troubled her.

"The CM was very nice. I went in my INA uniform, saluted her and said Jai Hind."

But the tired woman gets all fired up when she starts talking about Netaji. "He was so great that he could see what would happen tomorrow. He would surprise you all the time by coming in different disguises. He believed in Swami Vivekananda's ideals, and Netaji was like God to all of us."

So strong is her love for Netaji even today that she and some other freedom fighters have been assembling in Madurai on Netaji's birthday for the last several years. "We stand in front of his statue and salute, then meditate. Once I was in the ICU after a heart attack. I thought I would not be able to go but I do not know how it happened, I could go out just in time to be there to salute Netaji. It was a miracle! In the case of Netaji, miracles do happen."

She put on the INA cap and said apologetically, "I am tired. Otherwise, I would have worn the dress for you too to see."

As we were ready to go, she stood up, saluted and said, Jai Hind! And, the handshake! It was not the handshake of a tired old woman; it was warm and very strong, exactly like the woman.

http://in.rediff.com/news/2005/aug/26spec2.htm

More you talk to a moderate muslim more he becomes MULLAH , that is Mullah Kaleem Khwaja

BELOW IS A CHATTER OF FOIL ( Federation of Iquilabi Leftists) RECEIVED FROM A FRIEND OF INTELLIBRIEFS . Kaleem Khwaja ( the man who shed tears for Taliban when US bombed) and die hard leftists like Ravishankar , Rajashaker ( FOIL moderator) on MUSLIM PERSONAL SHARIA .

Kaleem Khwaja talks about Islam and criticize Hindus , have a wonderful reading, these chatters are windows to read their hearts and minds .
-------------------------------------------------
FROM RAVI

I am very surprized by this kind of response. Since I do not personally know all the discussants, I would not know if this kind of aggression is originating from somewhere else.

The way I see it, Sekhar is raising very legitimate questions about the role of religion in social and political life. I do not see any design to put only Islam under question, which is amply clear from Sekhar's references to Hinduism and Sankaracharyas. In other posts Daya and Sandeep have made out as if "rational response is being demanded only from Muslims". I think such statements are not fair either. I think we are all sensitive to the fact that Muslims are being targeted under Bush's version of "clash of civilizations". This does not mean, however, that in a discussion about religion and its undesirable role in social and political life no example can be taken from Islam. Are we supposed to exclude Islam from any such discussion on religion?

Ravi
---------------------------------------------

FROM KALEEM KHWAJA

Dear Ravi,

1. I have to disagree with the thrust of your argument that on Foil regressive social practices of all religions are decried in equal measure, and that Islam does not get significantly more negative focus. Please scan various such postings on Foil over the last 24 months. How many of them criticized Christian/ Cathloc practices, Hindu practices towards women, which are at least as regressive (from an athiest's point of view). Quran, Hadith and other Islamic scriptures are regularly scanned in detail on this list with suggestive comments. Anyone with some reading on Islam who writes negatively about Islamic practices is declared as a "genuine scholar of Sharia and Islam" and a reformist, regardless of the fact that he/she has never had formal education in Islam. How many times have you seen passages from Bible or Gita or Ramayana scanned here? Radical Muslims saying outrageous things about Islam are regularly glorified here as great reformers. How many times you have seen radical Catholics and Hindus glorified on this list as great reformers? Are all other religions already so much reformed and enlightened that there are NO negative elements left in them?

2. I will bet with you that about 3/4th of the writeups on Foil are negatively focused on Islam and Muslims alone. In fact hardly any negative news item or report or event about Islam ever escapes the magnifying glass of the subscribers on the Foil list. Why is that?


3. I disagree with you saying that Daya or Sandeep saying that it appears that most writers on Foil " are demanding rational behaviour from only Muslims" , is unfair. As I said above when only 1/4th of the writings on Foil demand "rational behaviour" from all religions combined, and 3/4th demand rational behaviour from Muslims, how do you interpret the trend?

4. It is a widely known fact that in the Hindu society in India harassment of ordinary brides (not burning which is an extreme act) for dowry is a daily event throughout the breadth of the country. Imagine how many Hindu young woman only ( extremely few Muslim women) are being harassed in this manner. Similarly the forced abortion of girl-fetus among Hindu wives is a very common event throughout the breadth of the country. How many young Hindu women are married off to men 25 years older than them? But you hardly ever hear that on Foil. Yet anytime a young Muslim girl is married off to an old man, the news gets total coverage and analysis. Right here on this list proud leftists have said without batting an eyelid that Muslim Personal Law Board sanctions child marriage. How many times did you hear them say that about Hindu religious authorities? How much coverage do these terrible negative practice get in the Indian media and on Foil? In comparison to every single fatwa against Muslim women, being given saturation discussion on Foil for upto a week.

5. No we should not exclude Islam from discussion. But why saturation coverage to Muslim practices and only mundane coverage of practices of other religions?


6. Many leftists on Foil are really leftists in the sense of leftism being a fad. Whatever is currently popular is attractive to them. Since Islam/ Muslim bashing is quite popular both in middleclass US and middleclass Indian societies, so their focus is on that too. They do not want to look at their own backyard, since it is not popular these days.

7. I recall that in 1989 when VP Singh announced the "Mandal Commission report", many a JNU leftists went around burning and rioting in New Delhi against the OBC equality that VP Singh was trying to create. While they were regularly discussing Marx and Leftism and decrying injustice on the globe in the cafes of Canaught Place, they were not willing to give real equality to OBCs in their own hometowns.


Kaleem Kawaja

US to study methods and techniques to reduce effects of IEDs

The Defense Science Board Task Force on Improvised Explosive
Devices (IEDs) will meet in closed session on September 13, 2005, at
Strategic Analysis, Inc., 3601 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, VA. The
Task Force will explore methods and techniques to significantly reduce
the effects of IEDs on U.S. and coalition forces in operations such as
are currently being conducted in Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF). The
Task Force should examine ways to counter the use as well as mitigate
the consequences of IEDs. The Task Force should examine ways to counter
the use as well as mitigate the consequences of IEDs.

DATES: September 13, 2005.

ADDRESSES: Strategic Analysis, Inc., 3601 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington,
VA.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: LTC Scott Dolgoff, USA, Defense
Science Board, 3140 Defense Pentagon, Room 3C553, Washington, DC 20301-
3140, via

e-mail at scott.dolgoff@osd.mil , or via phone at (703) 571-0082.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The mission of the Defense Science Board is
to advise the Secretary of Defense and the Under Secretary of Defense
for Acquisition, Technology & Logistics on scientific and technical
matters as they affect the perceived needs of the Department of
Defense. At these meetings, the Defense Science Board Task Force will
consider the entire spectrum of intervention objects, including
deterrence, dissuasion, remote pre-detonation, remote disarming,
elimination of sources and/or manufacturing facilities, discovery and
remove of critical personnel, discovery and removal of employed
devices, or anything else that has the end effect of either lowering
the value or raising the cost of employing IEDs as an insurgent or
terrorist weapons of choice. The Task Force will have four primary
objectives: Assess the current state of the art of allied forces in
countering adversary use of IEDs in operations such as OIF; recommend a
mid- to-long-term set of integrated activities aimed at improving the
state of the art in reducing the effect of IEDs over the next three to
ten years; provide recommendations on short term (over the next six
months to three years) incremental improvements in U.S. forces' ability
to counter or reduce the effectiveness of IEDs, and identify any
synergies that may exist between current counter-IED and countermine
efforts.
In accordance with section 10(d) of the Federal Advisory Committee
Act, Pub. L. 92-463, as amended (5 U.S.C. App. 2), it has been
determined that this Defense Science Board Task Force meeting concerns
matters listed in 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(1) and that, accordingly, this
meeting will be closed to the public.

Dated: August 19, 2005.
Jeannette Owings-Ballard,
OSD Federal Register Liaison Officer, Department of Defense.

August 25, 2005

'We've Got To Bring the Hammer Down on Iran' -- Interview with Gen. Paul Vallely (ret.)

Interview: Gen. Paul Vallely (ret.)

Source: Executive Intelligence Review.

Retired Army general Vallely is currently the head of the Military Committee of Frank Gaffney's Center for Security Policy and a member of the Iran Policy Committee, a gaggle of neo-conservatives formed to promote war and rebellion in Iran. He was interviewed by telephone on Aug. 15 by Bill Jones. In an earlier conversation, Vallely had told Jones that he knew that Osama bin Laden was in Iran, and that Ken Timmerman (author of Countdown to Crisis: The Coming Nuclear Showdown with Iran), had learned from Iranian dissidents in Europe that Iran already had nuclear weapons. "All roads lead to Teheran," Vallely said.

EIR: I wanted to ask you a few more questions on this whole Iran scenario. You indicated that, if push came to shove, and some military action were to be taken, you would recommend a naval blockade of the Strait of Hormuz?

Vallely: Yes, the Strait of Hormuz is the chokepoint for going in and out of Iran by sea—oil, imports, whatever, has to go through there. And it would be the most feasible option, if we went that route. It would be that, because then you can basically allow all ships to go in and out except Iranian ships. That would provoke—obviously some kind of a reaction. And the other down side is, of course, whether the Iranian people who would like to see the mullahs go, would put then any kind of a force majeure [extraordinary circumstance] there that would be supportive of that, and not create a lot of negatives. But someone has got to deal with this Iranian issue. Because they're absolutely convinced that they can do anything they want to, including the continued support of terrorism, and nobody's going to do anything about it.

We know the Europeans won't do anything about it. Like I told a couple of groups, I think we're probably going to find for the third time in the last hundred years that we're going to have to bail the French out again, because they don't get it. Britain now gets it. When I was up on the Lebanese border in March of this year, it was apparent, the sightings of Iranians in uniform with the Hezbollah, on patrol. And of course they control and feed the Hezbollah as the grown child of Iran, that it has been.

EIR: And what period of time was this? Before or after the withdrawal of the Syrians?

Vallely: Well, of course when I was there a lot of these things were occurring at that time, including the problems they were having in Beirut. But certainly we know that the only border in the world that is controlled by a terrorist organization is the Lebanese-Israeli border. That's completely controlled by Hezbollah. They've been able to very successfully infiltrate all of the towns and villages in southern Lebanon; they do it by buying the people off, of course. They give them food. They give them money. And of course all that money comes from Iran. Hezbollah is the most potent force in that area, as far as Lebanon is concerned. And I get a lot of intelligence out of Beirut through a couple of Lebanese sources.

So here you've got the situation now with the disengagement from Gaza going on, and we know, we're going to see it anyhow, that's going to become a very large terrorist camp. Hamas is going to control it, not the Palestinian Authority. Hamas is directly supported by Hezbollah. So you have this nexus of terror, that is connected and fueled by Iran and their surrogate, Syria. So what do you do? Nobody can figure where the hell the Administration is going on any of this.

EIR: Maybe they haven't figured it out either?

Vallely: They can't seem to figure any strategy out. I had dinner last night with the Speaker of the House—Denny Hastert was out here last night, and Congressman Dennis Rehberg—we had a fundraiser for him. So I had dinner with eight congressmen, and these were all conservative Republicans, and nobody can figure out where in the hell this Administration is going strategically. There's no Iranian policy, there's no Greater Middle East Policy that's articulated. It's the same rhetoric. So that I'm finding more and more conservative Republicans are trying to figure out, is Bush acting more like his father every day, or what's going on? So it's a real dilemma. I just sense a lot of frustration.

EIR: Unless they do something that they're not telling anybody yet?

Vallely: Well, that's what everybody keeps saying, but there's never any action. I mean, you know, Powell went in to Damascus and laid down things, but there's never any follow-up, never any action taken. And certainly it appears that Condoleezza Rice has hit a wall like Colin Powell did. There's no strong diplomatic effort that we have. Condoleezza Rice goes up and meets with Abbas over there, who's certainly not in any control; Hamas is controlling, not the Palestinian Authority. And she comes out of there again. and then we send conflicting signals to Israel, continually. And Israel is not in good shape over there, politically, as you know, because of the disengagement.

But I do know the Israelis have completed the targetting, for the targets in Iran. And they're prepared to do something. Now, whether they will or not is another question. They know they're the primary target of Iran. And you can see this whole disengagement thing, if it starts going south, and Gaza becomes the terrorist territory, with direct port entry, and entry from the Philadelphia line, the sector between Egypt and Gaza. Now you have clear paths coming in from the sea and from Egypt, and Hamas and Hezbollah, and Iran, of course, will take full advantage of that. You know if we had some clear, strong diplomatic efforts—I see nothing coming out of the State Department. Do you? You're there, but I can see they are doing nothing there that is either aggressive, or dealing with strength.

EIR: Well, I'm sure they're very divided on this issue. I don't know exactly what the internal debates are.

Vallely: Well that's where good strong leadership comes in. Who's the President and who's not? If I'm the President, I can have these debates, that's fine, but sometimes I've got to make decisions, and go forth. But I don't see any decisions coming out. And the attack dogs are always out there on the Democratic side. But there are no attack dogs any more on the Republican side. They've sort of silenced DeLay for a while here. And you find no attack dogs in the Senate or Congress any more. So to me, I'm sitting out here in Montana, and I see a weak Congress, I see a weak State Department. I see the the CIA trying to get on track. We don't even have any good agent intelligence coming out of the Middle East.

EIR: That's been a problem for a long time now.

Vallely: You know, I've got better intelligence coming out of the Middle East. I've got a guy from the Department of Defense that is assigned to me now, an intelligence guy, to process all the information that I'm getting directly out of the Middle East, including the sighting of bin Laden back in November, last year. So, I don't know.

EIR: Now tell me about the options with Iran. You say the Israelis have targetted sites in Iran. There is also talk that the U.S. has also done its own targetting as well.

Vallely: Yes, it has, it's done 81 targets, it's already been done.

EIR: OK. But tell me what do you do with it? Anything they have of importance is obviously buried very deeply. And even some of my Israeli contacts will tell me, "You can't do like Osirak on the Iranian facilities, you won't get to anything important." The facilities are buried much to deep to do that.

Vallely: Well, that's not true. Let's say you do designated strikes against the hardened facilities they have—just the psychological impact of laying down some JDAMs [Joint Direct Attack Munition—free-fall bombs fitted with a guidance system and tail kit] on those sites. You can dig down five or six stories, but I can still close you up. I can block you off. I can get down two or three stories; there's a lot of weapons systems that can close these sites down. You can go ten stories and I still can close you down. The hardened sites don't worry me.

EIR: You're saying you can close them down, and they can't get out.

Vallely: Yeah, there's lots of ways [laughs], you know with a bunker buster, which we've given to Israel, we've delivered those all. They got brand new F-16s that are fully loaded, that we gave them or sold to them.

The Iranians are very smart. And this is where it all started. It was when Carter was so weak, when Khomeini took over, took over our embassy, our weak response there. So, if you go back to the late '70s, Iran has been the pivotal state, along with Saudi Arabia, in fronting a lot of this. And the Saudis will do nothing about the Wahabis, the preachers of hate. Kuwait's made some moves in that area. They won't allow this preaching anymore. They've made some progress.

The other thing we're working on now is the nuclear deterrence strategy against radical Islam, much like we had in the Cold War, where we told the Russians, you know, you launch once, and ten of your cities are gone. OK. Somehow we've got to tell radical Islam, that any indication of one nuclear weapon coming into the United States, and Mecca and Medina become sand. There'll never be another hajj. And they have to have one completed hajj over their lifetime [laughs]. Not that we would do it, but the fact is you have to put the fear of God in them. It's the only thing they understand. Did you read Ken Timmerman's new book?

EIR: I sure did. It's all over the place. Everybody's reading it.

Vallely: Yeah, and Ken and I have been on together, and Ken has his information from different sources than I had. So the question is, what do responsible nations do? We cannot let radical Islam and the Iranians destabilize the Middle East and the world. We just can't do that. They can't continue to destabilize what's going on. So the question is, who has the balls enough to do anything? And there's diplomatic things you can do. Sanctions don't work in the Middle East. That's a farce! We put sanctions on Syria. Hell, they have cash, you can buy anything in the Middle East if you have cash. So sanctions don't mean anything.

EIR: It was also the stance of the Iran Policy Committee that you would try to encourage popular revolt within the country. And obviously there's a lot of discontent with the mullahs. But it seems to me you're dealing with the Shi'a here, you're dealing with a very sensitive type of nationalism which is going to be aroused by this. Even the people who are opposed to the mullahs give their full support to their right as a nation to develop the full nuclear cycle for their energy production.

Vallely: Look, we know the North Koreans were involved with the Iranians. We knew A.Q. Khan in Pakistan was involved with them. We knew about the Libyans. It's all connected. You know, it's not so hard to figure out. It really isn't. And everybody wants to make this so complicated. You change the regime in Iran, you change the whole Middle East. All those other things will tend to fall apart very quickly if they don't have Iranian support. So the question is, how do you do it? You can't depend on the Europeans for anything. I don't even worry about the Europeans. I told the Israelis the same thing: "Don't worry about the damned Europeans. You do what you have to do."

Dore Gold[1] and I worked on a strategy called Defensible Borders, a paper which we put out. That's a good one to read, by the way. It shows how Israel has the right to defend its borders, like anybody else. But I think the downside is, and I think even Sharon knows deep in his mind, that if this thing goes south in Gaza, like we think it will, then they [Israel] will go for a complete occupation of the West Bank and Gaza until every terrorist organization is put out of business. That's the only solution there. And we'll have to see what happens. But I know the Israelis are prepared to take very decisive action militarily, if we see this rise in terrorism there. We have even reports of al-Qaeda being in Gaza now. A report came in, they have cells working in Gaza now with Hamas, as they have been given sanctuary in Iran.

EIR: A pretty hairy situation, it seems.

Vallely: Yeah, and at some point in time you've got to bring down the hammer. If not, we're going to be under this continued terrorism threat. Did you read my book Endgame?

EIR: I just paged quickly through it.

Vallely: Well, read it again. Everything we said in there two years ago is coming true. It all comes back to Iran. And you're never going to solve the Israeli-Palestinian problem until you solve the larger Middle East situation.

EIR: There has been some talk of using tactical nuclear weapons to get at some of these sites.

Vallely: Yeah, that option's there.

EIR: Would that be effective in terms of closing them down? And secondly, would people accept—

Vallely: The fact that you irradiate the area, so there's no access—it's the same thing with irradiating Mecca and Medina. But if they're threatening, which we know, to bring nuclear weapons into this country—we know that's their ultimate goal, simultaneous detonations in New York, Washington, and maybe Chicago or Los Angeles. Just think of what one nuclear, small 20 kiloton weapon would do in Manhattan.

EIR: But what do you think the reaction would be if we used any type of nuclear devices, without having been provoked by their doing something similar?

Vallely: Well, that's why we're thinking the naval thing will really push them to do something stupid. And we hope they do. And then bring the hammer down on them. We know they're going to use them against us. There's nothing wrong with pre-emption.

EIR: But you're dealing with public opinion here. You know there's going to be an outcry over this.

Vallely: That'll happen no matter what you do. So Bush has nothing to lose. Do what he needs to do. American wants leadership. You're always going to have the anti-whatever-whatever. The other key thing is, what I keep telling audiences, that you can't drag wars out. If you go to war, it's gotta be decisive, it's gotta have finality, and it's gotta be done as quickly as possible. If not, the piranha will eat you alive. And that's what happened in Vietnam. We didn't, in Korea, with finality. And so we still have troops there.

The only finality we've seen is with Japan. That was finality.

Patton said, "Don't let the Russians take Berlin." We let that happen, and look what we had: the Cold War, and what they did in the aftermath of World War II.

But we just don't seem to have men of wisdom and strategic vision anymore, that understand. It's like Bush. The biggest mistake that he made, and I said it, at the time I was briefed on the post-Saddam period: We ended up putting in the Coalition Provisional Authority under Jerry Bremer, and that created the problems we have today. And I've had that validated many, many times and by many senior military commanders as well as the Iraqis. We basically ended up putting a State Department organization in charge of a war zone.

At any rate, now we're trying to recover, rather than putting in an interim government that we recommended they do, just like we did in Afghanistan. Bring the army back immediately. Get them on the payroll. Don't create these big bases and the Green Zone, and do all that stuff. I mean, you ought to see it over there in Iraq. It's like a big commissary, big PX's. You got to strike hard, fast, get it over with, bring the enemy to their knees as quickly as possible. You can't drag wars out. We're already beyond the time that we took out Hitler, which was three years and eight, nine months—we took out the Japanese and the Germans. We're now over that.

EIR: And we seem to be stuck there.

Vallely: We won't lay the hammer down on Syria. We know the Baathists. We know they're living up in the Aleppo area of Syria. We know the funding. We know the Damascus pipeline coming out of Russia, through Ukraine and Belarus into Damascus. So they're being fed weapons systems and things coming through that pipeline. And then you've got the pipeline from Iran, working into Lebanon and Syria. And all we hear is rhetoric.

Hey, listen, over a year and a half ago, I would have sent some strong signals into Syria. I'd have taken out ten of the offices in Damascus plus two of the training sites where we know they are, and at 2:00 o'clock in the morning, those things disappear. And at 6:00 o'clock in the morning we have plausible deniability [laughs].

EIR: Well, Bush does sometimes tend to follow in the footsteps of his father, although sometimes he might have indicated some sort of "gumption"?

Vallely: Yes, he has.

EIR: But what about Vice President Cheney?

Vallely:
Yeah, where the hell is he at? He ought to be the attack dog. Keep him in the damned closet over there in the West Wing somewhere. I'd make Cheney the attack dog every day! [laughs] You, know, I can't figure it out. Bush has nothing to lose. Nothing to lose. And he won't do anything stupid. But you've got to be aggressive, and if you don't bring these few nations that are causing these problems, supporting terrorism, to task, it's going to just continue and continue and continue. And that's why the Iranians—they know in their own mind that they're not going to do anything. That's why they're being the way they are. They're not dumb.

EIR: The statements they were making yesterday were very tough.

Vallely: You see, you do what you have to do. You don't worry about world opinion, because they're on to the next story in another two weeks, no matter what you do. That's why I told the Israelis, "Do what you have to do to protect yourself. Quit listening to our State Department."

EIR: We'll see what happens now with the Iranian President coming to address the UN, if they allow him to come, that is.

Vallely: Oh, what a farce that is! Do you believe that? The enemy coming into our camp.

[1] President of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs; he was the 11th Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations. He has written a book, Hatred's Kingdom: How Saudi Arabia Supports the New Global Terrorism, in which he maintains that the ideology prompting Islamic terrorists is rooted deeply in Saudi Arabian history. He claims that Saudi Arabia has become one of the main areas of refuge for al-Qaeda, in addition to the Pakistani-Afghanistan border, and the Iraqi-Iranian border.