Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Bath, Maine, United States

With a new administration in Washington it will be a challenge to get the 'liberals' to hold Biden-Harris to the few 'progressive promises' they made during their campaign. Biden is bringing back many of Bush & Obama's neo-cons to head his foreign policy. I'll be on this case without hesitation.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

CIA: International & Domestic Terrorism

I recently shared some passages from this book while I was about half-way through it. I've just finished reading it and want to share even more.  It's a very important book and while few will read the entire thing at least many of you can read some excerpts from it.

Douglas Valentine undertook a detailed study and analysis of the CIA's 'Phoenix' program of counterinsurgency in Vietnam.  He interviewed many of the key players who created and directed Phoenix.  Then Valentine took what he learned from the Vietnam program and shows how it has been refined and implemented in El Salvador, Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and more recently in Ukraine.  He chillingly illustrates how the Department of Homeland Security (created in response to 9-11) is being constructed to serve as the domestic version of the Phoenix program.

The book is endorsed by highly respected figures like NSA whistleblower John Kiriakou, academic Peter Dale Scott who came up with the tag 'deep state' and the truth-telling Robert Parry at Consortium News (which happens to be one of my favorite sources for news and analysis).

If you want to see the big picture of US empire, understand how it works, understand who many of the insiders are (or have been), and get a glimpse into what is coming to America in the near future - then I highly recommend this book.  See more of Valentine's words just below.


  • The CIA influences politics in foreign nations in many ways.  CIA officers are constantly funneling money to all political parties, right and left, and establishing long-range agents to monitor and manipulate political developments.  That's standard operating procedure.
  • The history of the US intelligence operations in Ukraine is educational.  OSS officers [of the US] in WW II released Stepan Bandera from prison in 1944.  Bandera was a Nazi collaborator whose militia slaughtered Poles, Jews and communist workers on the eastern front.  The US recruited Bandera so he could fight the advancing Soviet Union [as it fought Hitler's Army]. Nothing has changed.  Just over ten years ago the CIA initiated its 'Orange Revolution' for the same purpose - to thwart the Russians.  It was one of the first color revolutions and it involved the same people the CIA employed in its [Kiev] coup in 2014.  
  • [T]he CIA has been operating with [fascist] Ukrainian exiles since the end of WW II, when they hired General Reinhard Gehlen.  Gehlen had been the chief anti-Soviet spy for the German Army.  US Army intelligence hired Gehlen in 1945, but as soon as the CIA was formed it grabbed him and put him in charge of Eastern Europe.  The CIA used this former Nazi to re-activate the spy networks he had in Ukraine, Poland, Latvia, all the Eastern European countries, and these old Nazi spies and saboteurs went to work for the CIA.
  • [CIA] created a new Digital Directorate so it can more perfectly control Internet information.... Just as the CIA is at the forefront of propaganda on the Internet, its science and technology division is at the forefront of shaping the industries that run the world.
  • Certainly people have to be reminded, and the young have to learn, that America's policy of war crimes for profit cannot exist without the complicity of the mainstream media, which shamelessly exploits our inclination to believe that our leaders behave morally.
  • America's ruling National Security Establishment has expanded covert paramilitary operations from 60 nations in 2008, to 120 in 2013.
  • In 1967... the CIA's Counterintelligence staff were creating the MHCHAOS program in Langley, Virginia, to spy on members of the anti-war movement, and turn as many of them as possible into double agents.... Chaos was super-secret because it was illegal for the CIA to engage in domestic operations.
  • [The US has] the World Bank and the IMF strangling countries with debt, like the banks are strangling college students and home owners here.  The War on Terror is the best thing that ever happened to US capitalists and their secret police force, the CIA.  Terrorism is the pretext that allows the CIA to coordinate and transcend every government agency and civic institution, including the media, to the extent that we don't even see its wars anymore.  Its control is so pervasive, so ubiquitous; the CIA has actually become the Phoenix.
  • Not coincidentally, the outlawing of narcotic drugs turned the issue of addiction from a matter of 'public health' into a pretext for expanding police forces and reorganizing the criminal justice and social welfare systems.
  • Heroin smuggled by 'CIA people' into the US was channeled by Mafia distributors primarily to African American communities.  Local narcotics agents then targeted disenfranchised blacks as an easy way of subduing or criminalizing them, reducing their community organizing and voting power, thereby preserving the white ruling class's privileges.

  • [T]he CIA for years had sanctioned the heroin traffic from the Golden Triangle region of Burma, Thailand and Laos into South Vietnam as a way of rewarding top officials for advancing US policies.
  • [D]ozens of narcotics prosecutions have been dismissed on national security grounds due to the participation of CIA assets operating in trafficking organizations around the world.
  • [In 1975] the [Congressional] Church Committee, as it was known, was investigating the CIA's many and varied illegal activities.  But rather than bring about the total destruction of the Agency, the Church Committee concluded that allegations of drug smuggling by CIA assets and proprietaries 'lacked substance'....The Rockefeller Commission likewise gave the CIA a clean bill of health.
  • People think this [CIA drug trade] is something that started in Central America during Iran-Contra, but it started in China when the US backed Chiang Kai-sek in the 1920s. The only way that Chiang Kai-shek could finance his government was through the opium trade....The US has been engaged in an unstated policy since the 1920s of supporting its political allies by allowing the leadership to make fortunes dealing drugs.... With the support and blessings of the CIA, several top generals in South Vietnam had franchises in the drug trade.
  • Corrupting the leadership of a country in order to keep it in your pocket is integral to maintaining an empire.  It is a well-established colonial policy.  The two main facets of Phoenix - controlling the 'upper tier' people in a foreign government by corrupting them, and terrorizing the lower tier into submission - come together in the mid-70s in Central America and explode with Iran-Contra in the 1980s.
  • The US has had an unstated policy of smuggling guns to militant factions in Mexico's Northern states that are continuously fighting against the central government.  It's one of the ways of keeping the central government weak, so that Mexico can never develop into a strong economic or political adversary.... Several presidents of Mexico have been agents of the CIA.... No one talks about it, but the CIA has an operations officer engaged in covet actions in every province and state in Mexico, including along the border.
  • These things were planned 70 years ago.  After WW II, the big brains in industry and government prepared to rule the world....The CIA and military hire the smartest anthropologists, sociologists and psychologists to figure out how to do this stuff.  They have it down to a science called the Human Factors.
  • We need to develop a collective historical consciousness to understand the predicament and to be able to do something about it, to stop being manipulated by the press on a daily basis.  The media have us trained like sex-texting teenagers to focus on things that have nothing to do with how our perceptions of events are being controlled.  It is important for people to take a broader view and to try to put these things in perspective, not only to understand what is happening now, but to see where things are going in the future and to plot a way to deal with it.
  • From the time [my book] The Phoenix Program was published in 1990, I'd witnessed a gradual escalation of belligerent nationalistic rhetoric, accompanied by an outpouring of revisionist Vietnam War history. The reactionary Reagan, Bush and Clinton regimes had waged a series of increasingly militant and covert action initiatives, from El Salvador to Iraq to Serbia, in a calculated and well-publicized attempt to purge the Vietnam Syndrome from the fragile American psyche.

  • In its 2000 policy paper 'Rebuilding America's defenses,' the neocon Project for a New American Century worried that the transformation of American armed forces through "new technologies and operational concepts" was likely to take too long, "absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event - like a new Pearl Harbor."
  • Symbolically, 9/11 wiped the slate clean.  All the moral prohibitions on the rabid right were lifted, and all the rage they had cultivated during the degenerate Clinton regime was unleashed, under the aegis of counterterrorism, on nations sitting on vast oil reserves, as well as suspected terrorists, domestic dissidents, and the flag-waving American public as well.
  • The CIA does nothing unless it can be assured of plausible deniability, and the Homeland Security apparatus is an infinitely large space in which the CIA can hide operations aimed at manipulating society and managing the political control of the American people.
  • The psychological warfare campaign blossomed on 9/11; the warmongers saturated the airwaves and editorial columns with propaganda calling anti-war protesters "un-American" and equating them with terrorist sympathizers.  The propaganda has never stopped.  As it was during the Vietnam War, peace protesters and civil rights activists have become enemies of the state and, hence, targets of the Homeland Security infrastructure.

  • [T]he Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has fusion centers which operate in every state and major city, just like Phoenix intelligence and operations centers were set up in Vietnam.  Every law enforcement entity in a state or city sends a representative to the local fusion center, which tries to anticipate threats through analysis of shared intelligence....Along with the FBI's task forces, fusion centers serve as cover for domestic CIA operations. 
  • Ultimately, the DHS is about protecting the haves from the have-nots, just like Phoenix coordinators were protecting large land owners from Vietnamese revolutionaries fighting for agrarian reform.
  • Since the creation of the Homeland Security protection racket, over eight trillion taxpayer dollars has been moved from social programs into "internal security" programs that have provided the National Security Establishment with over 250,000 cadres to pacify the flag-waving American public.

  • For a glimpse into the future look at Israel, which has had a leading role in teaching Americans "how to do it".  There, administrative detention makes it okay to round up civilians, detain and torture them indefinitely, destroy their homes with bulldozers, cast them to the four winds, and steal everything they own simply because they are Palestinians.

  • Theoretically, only five percent of the population needs to be organized in this fashion in order to wield control over the indifferent 90% and defeat the five percent that form the resistance.
  • If America's policy of conducting war crimes is ever to end, people of conscience must expose the dark side of our national psyche, the part that allows us to employ terror to assure our world dominance.


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