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11 December 2014

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William R. Cumming

Agree! Wall Street has totally lost any moral bearing in its worship of MAMMON IMO! A clear and present danger?

William R. Cumming

Jack! The relatively new shorthand for your comment is "THE DEEP STATE"!

William R. Cumming

I believe Dersh is a dual-citizen! Should he be registered as a Foreign Agent?

Exemption from registration as a foreign agent may be one of the "benefits" of dual citizenship!

William R. Cumming

P.L. and ALL! Am I correct that the CIA has destroyed all video's and transcripts of EIT's and most of the e-mails relating thereto?

If so who exactly authorized the destruction? Was it in writing?

Fred

VV,

The ISIS leader is spreading some disinformation. ISIS would do what they are doing irregardless of American conduct, other than the actual invasion of Iraq, in which case Sadaam's government would be suppressing peopel with the ISIS ideology just like Assad's government is doing now in Syria.

rich

Has anyone looked at how the US law/s on torture were revised from the UN law/s when voted on by the Senate?

There might be loopholes.

rich

One reason perhaps that Obama has refrained from torture prosecutions is that he also may be guilty of crimes such as *transfering* detainees to torture, as seems to have happened in Afghanistan. The Canadian press has been all over this issue with respect to Canada's torture scandal in Kandahar. No doubt US forces did the same. Given US politics, the Republicans could go after Obama this way.

ISL

Okay, so the kid just shouted the emperor (democracy) has no clothes (rule of law) in these United States.

Dear Colonel: your suggestions are excellent and if implemented, would lead to a great renewal.

However, our society has evolved towards a lack of any accountability at the top (regulatory capture), where even failures in the marketplace have no accountability - the US public simply bails them out. Forward looking Obama, will he begin to prosecute now and (given that I agree with Rich, he likely does not have clean hands)?

Backup plan: A truth and reconciliation process, as in South Africa, to transition the US back towards democracy. Its worked elsewhere, sometimes.

no one

Col. Lang,

Great suggestions.

However, short of disbanding the CIA, I am skeptical as to efficacy.

There's nothing new going on here. How is the recent torture program different than Op. Phoenix? After much Congressional hand wringing did any Phoenix heads roll? Ditto CIA operations in Chile in '73.

Nor will the CIA be disbanded. The powers that be seem to want/feel the need for such an outfit and the kind of plausible deniability that having one confers on them.

IMO, This fish is rotting from the head and the CIA is closer to the tail.

turcopolier

no one

Phoenix was not a US government program. pl

William R. Cumming

ISL! Even worse US leadership feels "entitled" to exemptions fro Rule of Law among other controls.

no one

Sir, with all due respect, even the CIA says Phoenix was a US government program in conjunction with S.VN.

https://www.cia.gov/library/center-for-the-study-of-intelligence/csi-publications/csi-studies/studies/vol51no2/a-retrospective-on-counterinsurgency-operations.html

LeaNder

confused, I vividly remember a rather brillant essay by a Yale Prof. (of literature, if I recall correctly,admittedly no one I had heard about before) about why he was pleased to retire and/or trends among his students. A rather increasing priority intended to go into finances/financial speculation. In a nutshell, they all wanted to make enough money to be able to retire at the age 40. Exactly what a friend, who never reflected on the optimal option at that time told me more three decades ago. ...
Reflect on former rather stable and respected degree choices and its reality today. In other words, even ivy league institutions are part of a larger trend.

MS2

If you're not a sociopath by 18, a college is not going to make you one. At school they become credentialed and somewhat better trained sociopaths.

IIRC The Best and the Brightest had more to do with hubris than rank dishonesty. McGeorge Bundy in school is portrayed as basically a boy scout, if anything, insufficiently aware of what he was going to walk into. Where things got really bankrupt, IMHO, was with a crew that believed they were singlehandedly stemming the socialist tide and therefore allowed any measures. Rumsfeld and Cheney were there from the early days of that. They still think that way, they need some *ist tide to rationalize lust for power. The system broke under them decades ago. Oliver North, a big success, that says it all.

jr786

I don't have anything to add to the spirit of this thread, or the good suggestions already made, other than to say that somehow many, many Americans must be compelled to understand that their own cravenness made this happen. And their continued hypocrisy will enable it to continue.

America is a great country, but Americans are not a great people. That's why this happened, and why it will go unpunished.

LeaNder

I just checked, did you know, or alternatively have something to contribute to the Wikipedia article, that at least so far the wiki article about "deep state:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deep_state

refers to Turkey only? I seem to vaguely remember there was a different term in the US. Wasn't there? Shadow Goverment? Are you Canadian, I don't seem to remember.

All it reminds me of--in a top of my head way--is that fast money may well corrupt on a much larger scale. And yes, in the back of my mind is that Turkey seems to be one of the main routes for illegal drugs to Europe. That's equally fast money and fast money as Wall Street Sucess.

I have of course, admittedly, no idea about the costs of studying in an ivy league versus a non ivy university and the necessary money involved.

The beaver

WRC

José Rodriguez:
http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/jose-rodriguez-in-2012-what-the-cia-did-was-legal/
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/24/jose-rodriguez-cia-hard-measures-book_n_1450416.html
[quote]
"I wasn't going to sit around another three years waiting for people to get up the courage," to do what CIA lawyers said he had the authority to do himself, Rodriguez writes. He describes sending the order in November 2005 as "just getting rid of some ugly visuals."[eoq]

LeaNder

I agree with you considering The Dersh, but as to "veneer of legality" how about John Yoo?

Babak Makkinejad

Truth Commission in Brazil:

http://www.wsj.com/articles/brazil-says-ex-military-government-had-murder-policy-1418245841

LeaNder

I understand that Valerie Plame (aka Ms. Joseph C. Wilson) was solidly installed as a covert agent in this field. I assume this takes a long time. To what extend do I have false informations?

Now considering the Wilson/Plame Affair and not much knowledge in the larger context, should I take this threat more seriously as for example the Irak Yellow Cake purchase threat?

LeaNder

Actually, confused, considering the little I know about the Inquisition or slightly closer, historically, the torture of witches and sorceror's, it may well work, at least work in satisfying expectations. We all have more or less subtle instincts for that, sometimes its as easy as simply understand the wishes and intentions behind questions asked. To listen well, most of the time gives you "correct answer".

sglover

"I believe that CIA also has a large number of analysts who read open source information (eg. foreign magazines, web pages, etc) to gather information about our world."

Nothing like seeing the Great Leaping Non Sequitar in the bush, making his mighty jumps across whole oceans.

Somehow I think that an organization other than the CIA might manage to hire people who actually know a bit about a region, and understand its languages enough to follow its newspapers and web sites. If we wanted to go whole hog we could imagine this hypothetical outfit subscribing to foreign magazines, maintaining its own library, maybe even getting fast internet connections!

In fact, such an organization already exists. It's the State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research. What's more, on a shoestring budget, without drones and satellites, and without working anybody over in a dungeon, the BIR managed to better predict how our glorious Iraq adventure would turn out than all of the technology-centric agencies:

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/07/19/world/reach-war-intelligence-tiny-agency-s-iraq-analysis-better-than-big-rivals.html

turcopolier

no one

Have it your way. What is your point? Is it that this is routine US behavior? BTW, Phoenix was an RVN program with CIA supply and logistics support. pl

turcopolier

LeAnder

"a covert agent in this field" what field is that? Valerie was a clandestine case officer in the counter-proliferation branch of the Directorate of Operations at CIA. She never had anything to do with any of this business. The "yellow cake" lie propagated by the Bushies was thoroughly exploded in the book, "The Italian Letter." pl

LeaNder

Ok, I agree. The only way the issue can be handled too. On the other hand, how is is democracy going to deal with the much more educated, at least on the average, people that give these orders versus the maybe not so bright common soldier?

This response by the way reminded me of an article by you about Vietnam, if I recall correctly. About a personal or historic experience where military duty ends? I tried to look that up once but it seems to be buried deeply now.

But seriously: Considered realistically what percentage of the larger public has a firm grasp of their civic duties? Compared to perceived short term private advantages via possible consequences. Both inside and outside of the military?

And to complicate slightly more: I do expect more of our supposedly "enlightend"/more educated leaders especially in times when the media is rather uniform, and it was, and surely shapes the lesser minds among the soldiers.

(Wikipedia) The article gained little notice:

"Associated Press report, 2003

On November 1, 2003, the Associated Press published a lengthy report on inhumane treatment, beatings, and deaths at Abu Ghraib and other American prisons in Iraq.[43] This report was based on interviews with released detainees, who told journalist Charles J. Hanley that inmates had been attacked by dogs, made to wear hoods, and humiliated in other ways.[44] The article gained little notice.[45] One freed detainee said that he wished somebody would publish pictures of what was happening.[44]

When the U.S. military first acknowledged the abuse in early 2004, much of the United States media once again showed little initial interest. On January 16, 2004, the United States Central Command informed the media that an official investigation had begun involving abuse and humiliation of Iraqi detainees by a group of U.S. soldiers.

On February 24, it was reported that 17 soldiers had been suspended. The military announced on March 21, 2004, that the first charges had been filed against six soldiers.[46][47] None of these stories received significant coverage in the mainstream press"

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