Monday, September 11, 2006

9/11 Is a Joke, Pt 3: The Hydra


“Nothing just happens in politics. If something happens you can be sure it was planned that way.”
—Franklin D. Roosevelt

In a 1954 letter to his brother, President Eisenhower wrote:

“Should any political party attempt to abolish social security, unemployment insurance, and eliminate labor laws and farm programs, you would not hear of that party again in our political history. There is a tiny splinter group, of course, that believes you can do these things. Among them are H. L. Hunt (you possibly know his background), a few other Texas oil millionaires, and an occasional politician or businessman from other areas. Their number is negligible and they are stupid.”

As history has shown, Eisenhower was wrong to — as George W. Bush would say — misunderestimate Hunt and the others referred to in the letter, but he was right to identify that crowd as the insane miscreants that they were.

Haroldson Lafayette Hunt was a businessman and bigamist who fathered fourteen children by three wives and a mistress. Two of his marriages were concurrent. He is the father of Kansas City Chiefs owner, Lamar Hunt.

In 1934, Hunt used his poker winnings to bankroll a new oil and gas company called Hunt Oil. Before long Hunt Oil had operations in Canada and South America. Today, Hunt Oil is a subsidiary of Hunt Consolidated, a real estate and oil holding company owned by another Hunt offspring, Ray Lee Hunt.

H.L. Hunt poured millions into ultra conservative politics. He bankrolled two rightwing radio shows called Facts Forum and Life Line, which he used to promote the extreme views of the John Birch Society and Senator Joseph McCarthy. In 1951, he launched General Douglas MacArthur’s unsuccessful presidential campaign. In the 60s, Hunt helped finance two rightwing extremist groups — the Cuban Revolutionary Council, an anti-Castro organization with ties to the Mafia and the CIA, and the International Committee for the Defense of Christian Culture, which essentially functioned as a rightwing intelligence network operated through Christian missionaries abroad.

In 1961, President Kennedy initiated an effort to restructure federal tax schedules pertaining to the oil and gas industry. In the early 20th century, as the strategic importance of oil became apparent, favorable tax codes were established to encourage oil exploration and production. By 1960, however, the oil industry had produced many billionaires who paid little in income tax. Kennedy estimated that the government was losing around $185 million per year in uncollected income tax from oil tycoons. Kennedy specifically targeted Hunt, who, Kennedy noted, earned over $30 million a year in personal income but paid virtually nothing in income tax. Naturally, Hunt resented this initiative and intensified his support for ultraconservative politicians. Some evidence even suggests Hunt was involved in Kennedy’s assassination.

It would probably come as no surprise, therefore, that Hunt financed the political campaigns of conservative Republicans like Richard Nixon, George H.W. Bush and Edwin Walker, but he also supported at least one Democrat and even the Nation of Islam.

Hunt’s prodigious proclivity for procreation produced a plethora of protégés anxious to advance the as yet un-named neoconservative agenda. nifty, eh?

Ray Lee Hunt, for example, is the finance chairman of the Republican National Committee. He is also a Bush Pioneer, has a seat on the board of directors of Halliburton, and is a member of the President’s Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board. In 1984 (appropriately enough), Hunt Oil discovered an untapped oil reserve in Yemen. This discovery increased Ray Lee’s personal wealth from $200 million to over $2 billion, securing him a spot on Forbes’ list of the world’s richest people.

Another Hunt spawn, Nelson Bunker Hunt, is the scoundrel behind Silver Thursday, the result of Hunt’s attempt to corner the international silver market. That venture bankrupted Hunt, but with the help of the Federal Reserve and support from his family, he was back on his feet in no time, reinventing himself as a thoroughbred breeder with several championships and awards to his credit. Like the other Hunts, Nelson Bunker funnels millions into such rightwing organizations as the Moral Majority, Promise Keepers and the International Association for the Advancement of Ethnology and Eugenics.

But today’s links to H.L. Hunt and his ilk include more than just family ties; indeed, the entire neoconservative Hydra can be said to have hatched from the seeds sown by Hunt in the 50s & 60s, including its three main heads — Halliburton, the Carlyle Group and the Project for a New American Century.

A quick glance at Halliburton’s subsidiaries provides a clear picture of the connections between early archconservative industrialists and today’s neoconservative movement. Dresser Industries, for example, a Dallas, Texas energy products company went public under the guidance of Prescott Bush, who sat on the company’s board of directors for over 20 years. George H.W. Bush worked for Dresser before leaving in 1951 to form Zapata Oil. In 1988, Dresser Industries acquired a pipe fabricating company called M.W. Kellogg. Ten years later, when Halliburton acquired Dresser, M.W. Kellogg was merged with Halliburton’s construction subsidiary, Brown & Root, to form Kellogg, Brown & Root, now known as KBR. Brown & Root, also from Texas, achieved its success through a symbiotic relationship with H.L. Hunt’s friend, Lyndon Johnson, who, as congressman, senator & president awarded the firm many lucrative public contracts. During the Vietnam Era, Brown & Root came under fire for overcharging the military for its services. Those charges would be repeated 40 years later in Iraq.

Camps Under Fire
In 2005, civilian whistleblowers came forward to allege that Halliburton and its subsidiaries were benefiting from the company’s relationship with former CEO and current US Vice President, Dick Cheney. Bunnatine Greenhouse, the former chief contracting officer for the Army Corps of Engineers, accused the government of awarding secret, no-bid contracts to Halliburton subsidiary KBR when cheaper and better alternatives existed. She also accused KBR of overcharging for those services. Rory Mayberry, KBR’s Food Program Manager, accused the company of providing outdated food rations to military personnel and of deliberately falsifying the number of meals they provided and submitting false claims to the government for payment. Mayberry also testified that employees who spoke with government auditors were routinely sent to camps under fire, meaning military bases experiencing heavy casualties. “The threat of being sent to a camp under fire was their way of keeping us quiet,” he testified. An audit by the Defense Contract Audit Agency found $186 million in overcharges, but the no-bid contracts continue.

Since the September 11th attacks, Halliburtion stock has risen in value from around nine dollars per share to around $69 by late 2005. As of this writing Halliburton’s share price is $30.80. Its annual revenues over the same period have increased from $12.5 billion in 2002 to $20.5 billion. In short, the War on Terror has been good for Halliburton.

The Carlyle Group
The Carlyle Group makes Halliburton look like pikers. Known by many as the “ex-president’s club,” this private equity company wields more power than most governments. One of Carlyle’s most distinguishing characteristics is its ‘revolving door’ approach to employment. This approach often makes it difficult for outside observers to determine who is “officially” employed by the company at any given time; this in turn makes it difficult to determine exactly which conflicts of interest are in play at any given time. But a quick perusal of the company’s personnel past & present supplies a clear understanding of the company’s influence. Former US President George H.W. Bush, current President George W. Bush, former British Prime Minister John Major, former South Korean President Kim Dae Jung, former Secretary of State James Baker, former Secretary of Defense Frank Carlucci, former Prime Minister of Thailand, Anand Panyarachun all are or have been members of the Carlyle Group. Add to that several dozen other lesser-known cabinet members and elected officials who have served as official employees or “private consultants” through the years. This incestuous relationship with governments around the globe puts the Carlyle Group in a unique position to invest with unprecedented insight. Moreover, since Carlyle is a private equity company and not a trader in common public securities, it is virtually immune from oversight or regulation. What this means, of course, is that the company can engage in what is essentially insider trading with impunity. Government officials put certain policies in place, and then leave their government posts to join the Carlyle Group, where they initiate investment strategies that exploit the very policies they enacted while in government. It’s brilliant.

The Iron Triangle
CIA agent, Secretary of Defense, powerful businessman, the career of Frank Carlucci provides a fascinating glimpse into the power structure often referred to as the Iron Triangle — a partnership between the Pentagon, Wall Street and various governments around the world. Frank Carlucci was President Reagan’s Secretary of Defense from 1987 to 1989. It was during this time that the defense industry’s nightmare occurred: The Cold War ended. With no inevitable war with the Evil Empire looming just over the horizon, there was no longer any justification for the immense taxpayer-funded defense contracts that comprised such a large chunk of the federal budget. Defense contractors all over the world began selling off assets and laying off workers; they became sitting ducks for leveraged buyouts.

At the end of Reagan’s term, Carlucci became chairman of the Carlyle Group. Under Carlucci, the Carlyle Group became the 9th biggest defense contractor, but the only defense contractor that doesn’t actually manufacture anything. Carlucci used that post-Cold War slump to scoop up struggling defense industry companies, and he used his government connections to insure budget approval for his company's products. Three years later, Carlucci’s close friends, President Bush and General Powell, stationed 600,000 troops in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia as part of Operations Desert Shield & Desert Storm — troops that needed the supplies and support of the companies Carlucci had acquired.

When you consider the number of industry experts and former/future government officials employed by Carlyle, it becomes impossible to deny the alarming level to which the line between corporate profit and public policy had become blurred. Click here to read how the blurring of this line helped Carlyle turn their investment in a company called United Defense into a $237 million post-9/11 paycheck.

It is interesting to note that on the morning of 11 September 2001, the Carlyle Group was hosting a meeting at a Washington hotel. George H.W. Bush was in attendance, as was Shafig bin Laden, Osama’s brother. Carlyle et al. have taken great pains to minimize the importance of this partnership, referring to it as just a strange coincidence. Okay fine. But what do you make of recurring strange coincidences? In 1981, when John Hinckley Jr. tried to kill President Reagan, Vice President Bush was involved in a close business relationship with John Hinckley Sr. Their sons, Neil Bush and Scott Hinckley, had a dinner meeting on the day of the shooting. So on two separate occasions, relatives of Bush’s business associates were involved in spectacular, politically motivated crimes. I mean, I’m not sayin’; I’m just sayin’. Nahm sayin’?

But so far, all I have revealed is influence peddling and narrow corporate interest — albeit on a huge scale — not the orchestration of a gigantic false flag terrorist attack. For that, you would need something to suggest an ideology other than naked avarice. The Project for a New American Century provides just such an ideology.

PNAC was formed in 1997 to promote the philosophy of American global dominance, commonly referred to as neo-conservatism. Looked at charitably, it could be argued that the vacuum created by the Soviet Union’s collapse made it possible for destabilizing despots Slobodan Milosovic or burgeoning economies like India or China to achieve positions of worldwide supremacy. A preferable alternative, perhaps, would be an American-led effort to strengthen Western economies while promoting democracy and fair trade in emerging nations. Indeed, those are key phrases employed by PNAC to promote their vision of American global hegemony. The only problem is that democracy and fair trade are the least of their desires. The names of PNAC’s members pop up again and again throughout the neoconservative community, vividly illustrating that what they really want is a global government operated by the entities they control — entities like Halliburton, Whackenhut, DynCorp, the Carlyle Group, Marsh & McClennan, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, to name a few of the Hydra’s heads.

A New Pearl Harbor
In September of 2000, one year before the attacks, PNAC issued a 90-page report entitled, Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategies, Forces and Resources for a New Century, which suggested “that America should seek to preserve and extend its position of global leadership by maintaining the preeminence of U.S. military forces.” The report called for vigorous and even aggressive defense and promotion of Israel, Taiwan and South Korea, not to mention “the need for a substantial American force presence in the (Persian) Gulf.” The report conceded that these recommendations would incur widespread resistence from the public “absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event — like a new Pearl Harbor.” One year later, the World Trade Center and the Pentagon were attacked, and many of PNAC’s recommendations were implemented soon thereafter.

There’s no point in rehashing the copious physical evidence in the attacks themselves, or the fact that the 9/11 Commission Report ignored the copious evidence. Other sites cover that stuff better than I could here. My point here is simply to attempt to convey what I feel is an accurate analysis of the current American zeitgeist, and to reveal why something like the September 11th attacks was therefore inevitable.

The last two or three weeks has seen a barrage of commentaries — here’s one, here’s another, and anotherhere’s one more — attempting to debunk what they refer to as ‘conspiracy theories,’ culminating in a book by the wholesome folks at Popular Mechanics. The tone of these articles ranges from helpful but condescending, like the tone you might use with a fellow juror, to hostile and condescending, like the tone you might expect from, say, Michelle Malkin. What they seem to be reacting to is a poll conducted by Ohio University and Scripps Howard News Service indicating that over a third of Americans believe that “people in the federal government either assisted in the 9/11 attacks or took no action to stop the attacks because they wanted the United States to go to war in the Middle East.”

But as David Ray Griffin likes to point out, the question isn’t whether or not you believe in the conspiracy theory; the question is which conspiracy do you believe in. The accepted conspiracy theory is that 19 guys with box cutters evaded several layers of security and hijacked and crashed four airliners causing three skyscrapers to collapse and damaging the only unoccupied portion of the Pentagon without arousing NORAD or the Air National Guard. Another conspiracy theory is that rogue elements in the government, with the help of friends at powerful corporations, orchestrated the attacks for the purpose of launching an endless war abroad and eliminating civil liberties at home — in short, the creation of a corporate feudal state. Using the principle of Occam’s Razor, that is, accepting the explanation that makes the fewest assumptions, we are forced to conclude that the latter theory is the correct one.

Let’s return to the kids’ horseplay analogy I used in part one. Halliburton, the Carlyle Group and PNAC, along with a few other multinational organizations, are the main tricksters, the 36 percent (not to mention the victims and their families) represent the kid on his ass; everyone else represents the other kids — happy that they aren’t the ones who fell flat on their asses and uneager to start asking uncomfortable questions.

Robert Anton Wilson once said, “I have often wondered why people have such a powerful taboo against examining who owns and runs this nation.” From what I can tell, there are two reasons: fear and complacency.

I’m not sayin’; I’m just sayin’.

1 comment:

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