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America Is a Serious Terrorist Threat

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Here's a pretty fiery article I found... I will post my thoughts if the thread picks up.

 

 

America Is a Serious Terrorist Threat

 

As you read, consider the following questions:

 

According to Chomsky, how do wealthy Muslims view the United States?

 

How many Lebanese died in a 1985 truck bombing authorized by the Reagan administration, according to the author?

 

How does Chomsky define terrorism?

 

 

 

 

David Barsamian: The media have been noticeably lacking in providing a context and a background for the [september 11, 2001] attacks on New York and Washington. What might be some useful information that you could provide?

 

Noam Chomsky: There are two categories of information that are particularly useful because there are two distinct, though related, sources for the attack. Let's assume that the attack was rooted somehow in the bin Laden network. That sounds plausible, at least, so let's say it's right. If that's right, there are two categories of information and of populations that we should be concerned with, linked but not identical. One is the bin Laden network. That's a category by itself. Another is the population of the region. They're not the same thing, although there are links. What ought to be in the forefront is discussion of both of those. The bin Laden network, I doubt if anybody knows it better than the CIA, since they were instrumental in helping construct it. This is a network whose development started in 1979, if you can believe President [Jimmy] Carter's National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski. He claimed, maybe he was just bragging, that in mid-1979 he had instigated secret support for Mujahedin fighting against the government of Afghanistan in an effort to draw the Russians into what he called an "Afghan trap," a phrase worth remembering. He's very proud of the fact that they did fall into the Afghan trap by sending military forces to support the government six months later, with consequences that we know. The U.S., along with Egypt, Pakistan, French intelligence, Saudi Arabian funding, and Israeli involvement, assembled a major army, a huge mercenary army, maybe 100,000 or more, and they drew from the most militant sectors they could find, which happened to be radical Islamists, what are called here Islamic fundamentalists, from all over, most of them not from Afghanistan. They're called Afghanis, but like bin Laden, they come from elsewhere.

 

Bin Laden joined very quickly. He was involved in the funding networks, which probably are the ones which still exist. They were trained, armed, organized by the CIA, Pakistan, Egypt, and others to fight a holy war against the Russians. And they did. They fought a holy war against the Russians. They carried terror into Russian territory. They may have delayed the Russian withdrawal, a number of analysts believe, but they did win the war and the Russian invaders withdrew. The war was not their only activity. In 1981, groups based in that same network assassinated President [Anwar] Sadat of Egypt, who had been instrumental in setting it up. In 1983, one suicide bomber, maybe with connections to the same networks, essentially drove the U.S. military out of Lebanon. And it continued. By 1989, they had succeeded in their holy war in Afghanistan. As soon as the U.S. established a permanent military presence in Saudi Arabia, bin Laden and the rest announced that from their point of view this was comparable to the Russian occupation of Afghanistan and they turned their guns on the Americans, as had already happened in 1983 when the U.S. had military forces in Lebanon. Saudi Arabia is a major enemy of the bin Laden network, just as Egypt is. That's what they want to overthrow, what they call the un-Islamic governments of Egypt, Saudi Arabia, other states of the Middle East and North Africa. And it continued.

 

In 1997, they murdered roughly sixty tourists in Egypt and destroyed the Egyptian tourist industry. And they've been carrying out activities all over the region, North Africa, East Africa, the Middle East, for years. That's one group. And that is an outgrowth of the U.S. wars of the 1980s and, if you can believe Brzezinski, even before, when they set the "Afghan trap." There's a lot more to say about them, but that's one part. Another is the people of the region. They're connected, of course. The bin Laden network and others like them draw a lot of their support from the desperation and anger and resentment of the people of the region, which ranges from rich to poor, secular to radical Islamist. The Wall Street Journal, to its credit, has run a couple of articles on attitudes of wealthy Muslims, the people who most interest them: businessmen, bankers, professionals, and others through the Middle East region who are very frank about their grievances. They put it more politely than the poor people in the slums and the streets, but it's clear. Everybody knows what they are. For one thing, they're very angry about U.S. support for undemocratic, repressive regimes in the region and U.S. insistence on blocking any efforts towards democratic openings. You just heard on the news, it sounded like the BBC, a report that the Algerian government is now interested in getting involved in [the war against the Taliban government in Afghanistan]. The announcer said that there had been plenty of Islamic terrorism in Algeria, which is true, but he didn't tell the other part of the story, which is that a lot of the terrorism is apparently state terrorism. There's pretty strong evidence for that. The government of course is interested in enhancing its repression, and will welcome U.S. assistance in this.

 

 

Supporting Israeli Occupation

 

In fact, that government is in office because it blocked the democratic election in which it would have lost to mainly Islamic-based groups. That set off the current fighting. Similar things go on throughout the region. The "moneyed Muslims" interviewed by the Journal also complained that the U.S. has blocked independent economic development by "propping up oppressive regimes," that's the phrase they used. But the prime concern stressed in the Wall Street Journal articles and by everybody who knows anything about the region, the prime concern of the "moneyed Muslims"—basically pro-American, incidentally—is the dual U.S. policies, which contrast very sharply in their eyes, towards Iraq and Israel. In the case of Iraq, for the last ten years the U.S. and Britain have been devastating the civilian society. [Former secretary of state] Madeleine Albright's infamous statement about how maybe half a million children have died, and it's a high price but we're willing to pay it, doesn't sound too good among people who think that maybe it matters if a half a million children are killed by the U.S. and Britain. And meanwhile they're strengthening [iraqi leader] Saddam Hussein. So that's one aspect of the dual policy. The other aspect is that the U.S. is the prime supporter of the Israeli military occupation of Palestinian territory, now in its thirty-fifth year. It's been harsh and brutal from the beginning, extremely repressive. Most of this hasn't been discussed here, and the U.S. role has been virtually suppressed. It goes back twenty-five years of blocking diplomatic initiatives.

 

Even simple facts are not reported. For example, as soon as the current fighting began last September 30 [2001], Israel immediately, the next day, began using U.S. helicopters (they can't produce helicopters) to attack civilian targets. In the next couple of days they killed several dozen people in apartment complexes and elsewhere. The fighting was all in the occupied territories, and there was no Palestinian fire. The Palestinians were using stones. So this is people throwing stones against occupiers in a military occupation, legitimate resistance by world standards, insofar as the targets are military.

 

On October 3 [2000], [President Bill] Clinton made the biggest deal in a decade to send new military helicopters to Israel. That continued the next couple of months. That wasn't even reported, still isn't reported, as far as I'm aware. But the people there know it, even if they don't read the Israeli press (where it was immediately reported). They look in the sky and see attack helicopters coming and they know they're U.S. attack helicopters sent with the understanding that that is how they will be used. From the very start U.S. officials made it clear that there were no conditions on their use, which was by then already well known. A couple of weeks later Israel started using them for assassinations. The U.S. issued some reprimands but sent more helicopters, the most advanced in the U.S. arsenal. Meanwhile the settlement policies, which have taken over substantial parts of the territories and are designed to make it virtually impossible for a viable independent state to develop, are supported by the U.S. The U.S. provides the funding, the diplomatic support. It's the only country that's blocked the overwhelming international consensus on condemning all this under the Geneva conventions. The victims, and others in the region, know all of this. All along this has been an extremely harsh military occupation....

 

 

 

America's Terrorist Acts

 

Your [view] that the U.S. is a "leading terrorist state" might stun many Americans. Could you elaborate on that? "

The U.S. is the only country that was condemned for international terrorism by the World Court and that rejected a Security Council resolution calling on states to observe international law. It continues international terrorism. Violent assaults in Nicaragua are the least of it. And there are also what are in comparison, minor examples. Everybody here was quite properly outraged by the Oklahoma City bombing, and for a couple of days, the headlines all read, Oklahoma City looks like Beirut. I didn't see anybody point out that Beirut also looks like Beirut, and part of the reason is that the Reagan Administration had set off a terrorist bombing there in 1985 that was very much like Oklahoma City, a truck bombing outside a mosque timed to kill the maximum number of people as they left. It killed eighty and wounded two hundred, aimed at a Muslim cleric whom they didn't like and whom they missed. It was not very secret. I don't know what name you give to the attack that's killed maybe a million civilians in Iraq and maybe a half a million children, which is the price the Secretary of State says we're willing to pay. Is there a name for that? Supporting Israeli atrocities is another one. Supporting Turkey's crushing of its own Kurdish population, for which the Clinton Administration gave the decisive support, 80 percent of the arms, escalating as atrocities increased, is another. Or take the bombing of the Sudan, one little footnote, so small that it is casually mentioned in passing in reports on the background to the Sept. 11 crimes. How would the same commentators react if the bin Laden network blew up half the pharmaceutical supplies in the U.S. and the facilities for replenishing them? Or Israel? Or any country, where people "matter"? Although that's not a fair analogy, because the U.S. target is a poor country which had few enough drugs and vaccines to begin with and can't replenish them. Nobody knows how many thousands or tens of thousands of deaths resulted from that single atrocity, and bringing up that death toll is considered scandalous. If somebody did that to the U.S. or its allies, can you imagine the reaction? In this case we say, Oh, well, too bad, minor mistake, let's go on to the next topic. Other people in the world don't react like that. When bin Laden brings up that bombing, he strikes a resonant chord, even with people who despise and fear him, and the same, unfortunately, is true of much of the rest of his rhetoric.

 

Or to return to "our own little region over here," as [former secretary of war] Henry Stimson called it, take Cuba. After many years of terror beginning in late 1959, including very serious atrocities, Cuba should have the right to resort to violence against the U.S. according to U.S. doctrine that is scarcely questioned. It is, unfortunately, all too easy to continue, not only with regard to the U.S. but also other terrorist states....

 

 

The Politics of Terrorism

 

National Public Radio, which in the 1980s was denounced by the Reagan Administration as "Radio Managua on the Potomac," is also considered out there on the liberal end of respectable debate. Noah Adams, the host of "All Things Considered," asked these questions on September 17 [2001]. Should assassinations be allowed? Should the CIA be given more operating leeway?

 

The CIA should not be permitted to carry out assassinations, but that's the least of it. Should the CIA be permitted to organize a car bombing in Beirut like the one I described? Not a secret, incidentally; prominently reported in the mainstream media, though easily forgotten. That didn't violate any laws. And it's not just the CIA. Should they have been permitted to organize in Nicaragua a terrorist army which had the official task, straight out of the mouth of the State Department, to attack "soft targets," meaning undefended agricultural cooperatives and health clinics? What's the name for that? Or to set up something like the bin Laden network, not him himself but the background networks? Should the U.S. be authorized to provide Israel with attack helicopters to carry out political assassinations and attacks on civilian targets? That's not the CIA. That's the Clinton Administration, with no noticeable objection, in fact, even reported.

 

Could you very briefly define the political uses of terrorism? Where does it fit in the doctrinal system?

 

The U.S. is officially committed to what is called "low-intensity warfare." That's the official doctrine. If you read the definition of low-intensity conflict in army manuals and compare it with official definitions of "terrorism" in army manuals, or the U.S. Code, you find they're almost the same. Terrorism is the use of coercive means aimed at civilian populations in an effort to achieve political, religious, or other aims. That's what the World Trade Center bombing [on September 11, 2001] was, a particularly horrifying terrorist crime. And that's official doctrine. I mentioned a couple of examples. We could go on and on. It's simply part of state action, not just the U.S. of course. Furthermore, all of these things should be well known. It's shameful that they're not. Anybody who wants to find out about them can begin by reading a collection of essays published ten years ago by a major publisher called Western State Terrorism, edited by Alex George (Routledge, 1991), which runs through lots and lots of cases. These are things people need to know if they want to understand anything about themselves. They are known by the victims of course, but the perpetrators prefer to look elsewhere.

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Do what cha gatta do to be number 1. Haters ganna hate.

 

I agree. Any atrocity committed by the US is justified in that we are entitled to all world resources and the domination of others economy, culture, government, etc.

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As the US goes bankrupt I can only see the violence escalating. When will the american people say "Enough is enough!"

This global economic crisis could be the precursor to WWIII.....

 

The emperor wears no clothes.

 

95% of the resources are owned by less than 5% of the nation. Instead of reforming Capitalism, maybe it would be wiser to keep pushing it to a crash. To a collapse. Class War.

 

The military is made up of mostly poor people, so maybe their desperateness could be directed to a more productive cause. It isn't the niggers, it isn't dem damn illegal immigrants, it isn't the towel-heads, its the fucking transnational corporations, the banking elite and the corrupt government that protects them. Organization of the IWW nature maybe, or the Zapitista's would be a good role model for a revolutionary movement too I suppose.

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lmao!

 

Word? The military is made up of poor people? You're right, now that I think about it, all the people I know serving in any branch of the military lives in abject poverty. Totally hit the nail on the head bro.

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The military may be filled with "poor people"...but theyre all have more money than all the countries were fighting. WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!! FUCK YOU OTHER COUNTRIES

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lmao!

 

Word? The military is made up of poor people? You're right, now that I think about it, all the people I know serving in any branch of the military lives in abject poverty. Totally hit the nail on the head bro.

 

Yep, I know a 4 people serving so that speaks for the entire military population. Glad I could clear that up for you Spit!

 

 

Yeah, poor might be a stretch, maybe economically disadvantaged would be a better choice, but how many upper class people do you know in the military? The only reason I can think of why someone would risk their lives for a little bit of college money is if they didn't have money for college to begin with.

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Capitalism will in all likelihood crash. There are many indications of this.[/color] I don't however know if this is a good thing. We could end up in an even worse situation. Look at the situation in Zimbabwe: They've had to deal with hyperinflation for years now because even though the people are mostly united against Mugabe, Mugabe still controls the military because he keeps them well paid, and the military controls the country with an iron fist. This is how tin pot dictators retain power despite popular movements.

 

-"I can hire one half the working class to kill the other half."--Jay Gould (1836-1892), financier, railroad businessman

 

The US is essentially no different. Even our current military bears a resemblance to mercenaries, and actual mercenaries outnumber official troops. Even though the military mostly recruits the poor, many of them are still doggedly loyal despite feeling whipped. 2/3 of the US military is republican also and there is a Scary New GOP Poll that only confirms what I already knew about republicans. The military is the embodiment of "Yes-Men". People critical of their policies are often hazed and run out of the military. I should know, I was one of them. They discourage critical thinking just like the mainstream media discourages critical thinking.

Even though growing numbers of people are becoming politically-aware still the majority of the US population toes the party line, be they Republicans or Democrats. People are angry at the bankers, wall street fraudsters, croney capitalism, and the government being for sale, sure, but they feel powerless to do anything about it. And right they are, with the military in the pocket of the rich and powerful, the average american is powerless against them. Unless we are united. But we are not united... People still only believe what the mainstream media tells them, and that is the will of the rich. Sometimes I wish Anonymous would take over a satellite or something and transmit a media barrage of Truth. Or hack some prominent websites. Or something.

 

It will be interesting to see what happens when it all comes crashing down.... especially since the US has the highest number of gun owners (in the world?). They will certainly have a hard time imposing their will with an iron fist. It certainly won't be pretty. That much is for sure. Divided we fall!

 

This is a huge claim! Care to name a few these reasons?

 

I don't see any evidence for this at all. The GFC had little to do with the problems of capitalism itself, more so its relationship with a democratically state run regulatory system.

 

Pointing towards wealth disparity is a red herring once a distinction between economic and political power is made. For example, you could perhaps argue that the French revolution was a reaction to extreme wealth disparity but this disparity is due to the coercion of taxes (or perhaps a better word is tribute) from the citizenry. Ignoring the iproblem of corporatism for the sake of limiting the scope of the discussion, in absence of political coercion wealth can only be generated by addressing the demands of others. It would be completely reasonable to say that wealth disparity is a cause of political instability if that disparity was achieved through coercion, but this is largely not the case in a capitalist society. The generation of wealth through trade is not a zero sum game, we have long left behind this mercantile understanding.

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The US is bankrupt and doesn't even know it[/url] for starters. Secondly, there is 1 trillion dollars worth of Adjustable Rate Mortgages that will adjust upwards by 2012 causing most of those people to default. Third, the commercial real estate market is going to collapse. Fourth, and most importantly, there is already $700 trillion in unstable debt in the recently legalized derivatives market.

 

I would argue that the megacorporations' wealth is largely gained by coercion. See my discussion on wage slavery in this thread.

 

The article is talking about the problems of deficit US budgets. This may, although very very unlikely, see the end of the US state based system, far more likely is that the US will make some fiscal adjustments. Yet you say it is capitalism itself that will crash. I not going to go to lengths to explain why this is a conflation of issues and largely a very silly statement. But as per my post in the other thread, I recommend you pull your head in and think about what you actually mean and the words you use to convey this intended meaning.

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Fiscal adjustments? What like raising taxes? That will only slow the economy down even more. The Fed printing more money to buy toxic assets and pay debts? That is the road to hyperinflation.

 

Yes fiscal adjustments. It is most likely to be through a combination of all the obvious approaches; cut services, increased taxes, printing more money.

 

I find it interesting that on the one hand you acknowledge that raising taxes will slow down an economy, yet in the 'bankrupt US' thread you say this;

 

So you really think taking away some of the profits to pay workers of these hugely profitable companies will create a disincentive to hire workers? Somebody has to work for them.

 

Do I need to elaborate on the inconsistency between these two messages? Perhaps you are experiencing some cognitive dissonance.

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Fiscal adjustments sounds like a sanitary way of saying "destroy the country" if that's what it means.

 

What does paying employees more have to do with raising taxes? Perhaps it is you who are experiencing some cognitive dissonance.

 

Here you go again. Destroy the country hey? I wont even respond to that because you are either trolling or you have a irrational inclination to see doomsday around the corner regardless of the evidence.

 

Raising taxes is a disincentive to maintain or increase current levels of production. This is a top down imposed barrier to the potential trade equilibrium. Imposing a wage increase is the exact same thing, but from the bottom up. Both act as barriers to potential equilibrium trade, ie both will decrease the aggregate amount traded within an economy.

If you don't believe me, look it up.

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Yes I did answer your question. You are just too busy being self congratulatory to realise. I don't think you have much of an idea about 'basic economics' homeboy.

But anyway, I'm out. Its been real.

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While economics, class struggle, division of labor etc play a pivotal role in our lives, how about we keep this thread about the U.S. aggressive foreign policy (whether you agree if its just or not, it is definitely aggressive) and past actions that have been widely documented by academia but largely ignored by mainstream media.

 

And to the cynics. Criticism is welcome, just please keep it civil. "Chomsky is a fucktard" or "Americaz da best" will be returned with a Neg. Refute the argument or be dismissed as an ignoramus that is incapable of typing a simple paragraph that occupies half a minute of your time. Inane Chitchat and random misplaced character attacks dilute the thread of its potential for rational, intelligent discourse. This internet shit is so serious y'all you don't even know.

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While economics, class struggle, division of labor etc play a pivotal role in our lives, how about we keep this thread about the U.S. aggressive foreign policy (whether you agree if its just or not, it is definitely aggressive) and past actions that have been widely documented by academia but largely ignored by mainstream media.

 

And to the cynics. Criticism is welcome, just please keep it civil. "Chomsky is a fucktard" or "Americaz da best" will be returned with a Neg. Refute the argument or be dismissed as an ignoramus that is incapable of typing a simple paragraph that occupies half a minute of your time. Inane Chitchat and random misplaced character attacks dilute the thread of its potential for rational, intelligent discourse. This internet shit is so serious y'all you don't even know.

 

chomsky is a decent critic of the US empire, however i dont wear class warfare goggles like some of the other people on the board.

 

the overseas empire is one place i can agree with the hard left on. however my main contention is that the left doesnt believe a thing the pentagon says (and rightly so) yet holds anything the USDA, EPA, welfare state/class warfare theoreticians say. and the inverse is true of the right. they dont believe a thing the EPA says but believe everything the pentagon says. my mission is to convince both sides to not believe ANYTHING the govt says. on a related note, i cannot fathom how people can think that the same body that engages in horrid foreign adventurism abroad, can some how satisfy every want, desire and need and create a utopia in the US through welfare, redistributionism, 'regulating' business, etc. wishing for a state that only does nice warm cuddly things is like wishing for a lion that only purrs and cuddles or a rattle snake that only provides percussive accompaniment to mariachi music.

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i dont think its quite right to simply narrow everything down to 'corporations' or 'wall street.' there is nothing wrong with honest profit. there is also nothing wrong with being big if it is a result of free exchange, satisfaction of customers and doing so profitably. what is wrong is using government privilege. lets not forget that in a free market, these businesses have no power over anyone. the only reason corporations hold any power is because of the govt. lets make sure we all understand that wall street does not like free markets. they like government. but as i said before, we cannot expect a government to only give handouts to one group of people (poor) and never give it to anyone else (the rich, wall street, etc)

 

the USDA and the EPA have brought more entirely to much harm to the food system and entirely to much harm to the environment and to civilization itself. the road to hell is paved with good intentions. just because they pretend to operate under noble goals, doesnt make it so. the defense department supposedly operates on the same noble goal. freeing oppressed peoples, spreading democracy, etc.

which goes back to my main point. you cannot have a govt do one set of 'good things' and expect them never to engage in another set of peoples idea of 'good things'

 

notice one common denominator?

no corporation would have any coercive power at all over a single human being if it wasnt for the government.

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notice one common denominator?

no corporation would have any coercive power at all over a single human being if it wasnt for the government.

 

Well would you look at that.... We agree. :)

 

I just hope you see the light and notice no one, not even YouTube Rhetoric-Laden Internet Star Ron Paul is going to significantly change anything.

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i have no hope in electoral politics at all. i do not believe a ron paul presidency will change the world. it would only be an incremental step to restoring liberty in the US. just as i support elimination of the IRS, i'd also have to support any tax cut. so it is with 'ron paul.' a president such as RP couldnt change anything that isnt within his power to change. what he could change is foreign policy, use of the various police tools such as the patriot act, etc, almost instantaneously. i'd say i'd rather have that than not have him in office as president. and this alone seems reason to support him. although the main reason i support him is because he speaks the truth straight to the beasts face. he has all the financial networks now talking about the federal reserve. however off base the majority may be at present, he is the originator of the 'tea party' movement. the mere fact that he has millions of americans now questioning things that were untouchable just a few years ago is the main reason i support him.

 

the only thing with any hope of changing 'the system' in a significant way is the method used on april 19 1775

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