Post(s) tagged with "CIA"

Salvador Isabelino del Sagrado Corazón de Jesús Allende Gossens (Valparaíso, 26 giugno 1908 - Santiago del Cile, 11 settembre 1973) è stato un politico e medico cileno, primo Presidente marxista democraticamente eletto nelle Americhe. Allende fu Presidente del Cile dal 3 novembre 1970 fino alla destituzione violenta a seguito di un colpo di stato militare appoggiato dalla CIA con il sostegno diretto del governo USA (Richard Nixon e Henry Kissinger), avvenuta l’11 settembre 1973, giorno della sua morte. Laureatosi in medicina all’Universidad de Chile, ne fu allontanato e venne inquisito per motivi politici alla fine degli studi. Nel 1933 partecipò alla fondazione del Partito Socialista Cileno. Successivamente venne eletto deputato del parlamento cileno nel 1937. Nel 1943 venne scelto come segretario del Partito Socialista e ricoprì la carica di ministro della sanità, mentre nel 1945 divenne senatore. Nel 1970 ottenne la vittoria elettorale come candidato alla nomina a presidente della repubblica del Cile, quindi presiedette un governo di coalizione. Nel 1973 un “golpe” organizzato da elementi reazionari e fascisti dell’esercito causò la sua morte in circostanze drammatiche nel palazzo presidenziale a Santiago del Cile, portando al governo il generale Augusto Pinochet, che instaurò una dittatura militare sostenuta dall’imperialismo internazionale e dal Vaticano di Giovanni Paolo II. I sostenitori di Allende si riferivano a lui come Compañero Presidente (“Compagno Presidente”).
Patricio Guzmán Lozanes (Santiago del Cile, 11 agosto 1941) è un regista, sceneggiatore, attore e fotografo cileno. È conosciuto a livello internazionale per aver diretto i tre documentari della “Battaglia del Cile”: “L’insurrezione della borghesia” (La Batalla de Chile: La insurrección de la burguesía, 1975), “Il colpo di stato” (La Batalla de Chile: El golpe de estado, 1977) e “Il potere popolare” (La Batalla de Chile: El poder popular, 1979).
Ha diretto inoltre “Il caso Pinochet” (Le Cas Pinochet, 2001) e “Salvador Allende” (2004).

historicalconfessions:

It pains me to know that many people still are not aware of what occurred on September 11th… in 1973

historicalconfessions:

It pains me to know that many people still are not aware of what occurred on September 11th… in 1973

Source: historicalconfessions

leptiir:

I Love Bosnia But I Hate The Politicians!

I love this guy, he’s amazing ahha, I also agree with what he says. & he’s hilarious when he swears in Bosnian bahahaha.

Drone strikes in Yemen: US expert warns of anti-western sentiment ⇢

socialuprooting:

Former CIA counter-terrorism chief says US military strategy in the region is forcing Yemenis into violent extremism

The former head of the CIA’s counter-terrorism centre has warned that the use of drone strikes in Yemen risks turning militants into “dedicated enemies of the west”.

Robert Grenier, who was director of the intelligence agency’s counter-terrorism unit from 2004 to 2006, said the US risked turning Yemen into the “Arabian equivalent of Waziristan”, a reference to the strife-torn Pakistani region.

His comments came after the resignation of the US ambassador to Pakistan, Cameron Munter, who is said to have clashed with the CIA over its drone programme. On Sunday, a US drone attack in Yemen killed a top al-Qaida leader who was on the FBI’s most wanted list.

“One wonders how many Yemenis may be moved in future to violent extremism in reaction to carelessly targeted missile strikes, and how many Yemeni militants with strictly local agendas will become dedicated enemies of the West in response to US military actions against them,” Grenier wrote in a comment article for Al Jazeera.

unseenholocaust:

Barack Obama’s 2012 platform,
Chains you can believe in!

unseenholocaust:

Barack Obama’s 2012 platform,

Chains you can believe in!

Source: unseenholocaust

Well, to learn about what the Cold War was about, the obvious place to look is what happened when it ended. So, November 1989, the Berlin Wall fell, the Soviet Union soon collapsed. So what did the United States do? How did it react? I mean, the pretext for everything that had happened in the past was, y’know, the Russian monster — “the monolithic and ruthless conspiracy” attempting to take over the world, as John F Kennedy called it. Well, now the monolithic and ruthless conspiracy was gone, so what do we do? Well, it turns out what we do is exactly the same thing but with different pretexts. And that was made clear instantly. A couple of weeks after the Berlin Wall fell, the United States invaded Panama, killing unknown numbers of people. We don’t count our victims. According to Panamanian human rights groups, maybe a couple of thousand people, bombing the slum — the El Chorillo slum. The Panamanians take it seriously. In fact, last December they once again declared a national day of mourning referring to the invasion, but I don’t think it even made the newspapers here. I mean, when you crush ants in your path, you don’t pay much attention to what they may have to say about it. But they invaded Panama and had to veto some Security Council Resolutions. The point of the invasion was to kidnap a kind of a minor thug, Noriega, who was kidnapped, brought to the United States, tried, sentenced to a long sentence — sentenced for crimes that were real. But he had committed them when he was on the CIA payroll, almost without exception — a small footnote. But for that we had to invade Panama and kill however many people it was (a couple of thousand, probably) and install a government of bankers and narco-traffickers, and drug trafficking shot up, and so on. But it was a successful invasion and applauded here.

- Noam Chomsky, Modern-Day American Imperialism: Middle East and Beyond (via fyeahnoamchomsky)

Source: fidaiyin

fariyahsn:

Shirin Neshat: Art in exile

People like myself, we’re fighting two battles in different grounds. We’re being critical of the West, the perception of the West about our identity, about the image that is constructed about us, about our women, about our politics, about our religion. We are there to take pride and insist on respect. At the same time, we are fighting another battle, that is our regime, our atrocious government who has done every crime in order to stay in power. Our artists are at risk. We are in a position of danger. We pose a threat to the order of the government. But ironically this situation has empowered all of us because we are considered as artists central to the cultural, political, social discourse in Iran. We are there to inspire, to provoke, to mobilise, to bring hope to our people. We are the reporters of our people and communicators to the outside world.  

Art is our weapon. Culture is a form of resistance. 

Source: fariyah

Do You Hear the People Sing?: CIA Behind 2012 French Presidential Coup ⇢

arielnietzsche:

anoncentral:


Turkish newspaper urged that the United States be listed in Guinness Book of World Records as the Country with the Most Foreign Interventions.”


The 2012 french elections were rigged, censored, and manipulated. Nicolas Sarcozy had been spotted before the elections buying a house in the Hamptons; which proves that the french ruling elite had already changed their minds to whom their “guy” was going to be this time. The French and International Mainstream Media completely censored several other candidates as they always do, particularly a french comic, who is known for calling these past decades of French politics “ a constantly encouraged hymn towards fascism “.  That is what our elites love to do, keep us guessing while we run like mice through their mazed contraptions. And you cannot blame them, it is their instinct to survive, it just so happens that they force their instinct on everyone else through fascism against the poor.

The big problem you see is this, Francois Hollande and Nicolas Sarcozy were part of the same think tank “Le Siecle” ( which already has a bad reputation and many people in it with bad reputations). Francois’s wife worked for Bolloré, one of the most influential families in FranceNicolas Sarcozy was also Berlusconi’s lawyer in the 1980’s and was a personal friend of both Berlusconi and Putin. This helps understand why Sarcozy rebuilt/privatized the non-existent French military in support of NATO, so that America could justify internationally having gone to Afghanistan and Iraq. Psyops programs were started in Germany and France to turn public opinion towards supporting George Bush’s imperialist war. Remember when Sarcozy and Bush went on a boat ride? Or do you remember how cozy Bush and Blair’s relationship was (Polanski made a movie about it, and you saw what happened to him)?

This was our icon on Facebook for over 2 years, and Facebook recently deleted it saying it was breaching their terms of engagement. If it is, that means that Facebook’s terms of engagement are against freedom of speech.

And with all this information of course you could argue that conflict of interest in the 21st Century is so common and normal; and some will even go even further, because they are so brainwashed; they will inadvertently say that conflict of interest should stay legal for some of the world’s wealthiest and most sophisticated mass murderers, who manipulate elections around the World, in support of private corporate interests. Is it? Because that sort of entangled mainstream rhetoric sure was paid for by some sophisticated S.O.Bs.

Conflict of interest might have been uncommon, if the U.S. had not already intervened in European elections many times before, and hadn’t already supported right-wing fascists like the FN’s Lepen family (who helped serve as a tool to bring France more towards accepting corporate fascism as did the fascist party of Russia). The CIA has supported other well known fascists including Berlusconi, and Putin’s only competition the fascist party itself (there is no difference between Putin and the Russian fascist party, if you noticed they always vote and support the same political objectives, those of the upper class). Signor Putin, is beyond any doubt a CIA asset, who is trying to bring Russia into NATO in order to “fight” against the “Axis of evil”, or pretend to and then act as though they brought peace, instead of more profits to their pockets.

The very definition of right wing is this ( many people these last decades pretended to be on either side of the political spectrum, but who are actually beyond any doubt right wing pions):

“ In politics, the Right, right-wing and rightist has been defined as the support or acceptance of social hierarchy.”

Let us try and see if this rule applies:
Hitler?… Definitely a Social Hierarchist… therefore right-wing
Stalin?… Definitely a Social Hierarchist… therefore right-wing
Bush?… Definitely a Social Hierarchist… therefore right-wing
Ayatollah of Iran?… Definitely a Social Hierarchist… therefore right-wing
King of Saudi Arabia?… Definitely a Social Hierarchist… therefore right-wing
Sarcozy?… Definitely a Social Hierarchist… therefore right-wing
“Le Siecle?…. Definitely for Social Hierarchism… therefore right-wing
Obama?… Definitely a Social Hierarchist… therefore right-wing
U.K. Monarchy?… for Social Hierarchism… therefore right-wing
Leader of the D.P.R.K?…. Definitely a Social Hierarchist… therefore right-wing
Napoleon?…. Definitely a Social Hierarchist… therefore right-wing
Roman Empire?… Definitely for Social Hierarchism.. therefore right-wing

Which proves my point, that all true leftist defenders have been murdered for thousands of years, by social hierarchists who always indoctrinated the poor into believing that hierarchist/elitist systems (while being on top, and self-proclaiming people intelligent or not), were good. Why were so many poor people murdered all throughout history? So that a few people could manipulate everyone else? Doesn’t seem very intelligent, and definitely not a good way to make sure monetary inequality doesn’t occur. Robin Hood wasn’t written yesterday. And neither was Oliver Twist, the history of Diogenes of Sinope, or all those other anarchist spirits who have been black-holed from history, simply because they were against helping social hierarchists manipulate those who had nothing, time and time again, for thousands of years.

FURTHER READING:

A French website recently stated that Sarcozy was a pion for the CIA, since the website has been deleted and all of their links are now dead.

François Hollande Nicolas Sarkozy… both in the same club “Le Siecle” …. with the likes of Édouard de Rothschild … socialist my ASS!….

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Le_Si%C3%A8cle_(think_tank)

The two names are in sequence in the section “personnalités politiques”:

http://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Le_Si%C3%A8cle

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Anonymous’ political agenda because we don’t have one.

HOLY SHIT I KNEW IT.

WHY AM I ALWAYS RIGHT?

Interesting…

Source: basedinternet

Dario Fo - Morte accidentale di un anarchico, Il caso Pinelli

Tutta l’Italia del potere è rappresentata qui, compresa la chiusura -chiaroveggente nel 1988- su Mani Pulite

anti-propaganda:

History of U.S. Intervention in Iran - 1953 Until Present (by ThePresidentDotCom)

‘This video is a basic overview of U.S. imperialism toward Iran that began at the behest of the British Government and big oil interests including British Petroleum also recently known as BP.

The United States’ own CIA led it’s first coup to overthrow a foreign leader against Mohammad Mosaddegh in 1953, The U.S. has suffered “Blowback: ever since, all the while the supposed leaders in Washington continue to demonize Iran’s leaders on flimsy grounds as more pretense to continued Middle East war and occupation by the U.S.’

Source: youtube.com

1. The more completely the place of confinement eliminates sensory stimuli, the more rapidly and deeply will the interrogatee be affected. Results produced only after weeks or months of imprisonment in an ordinary cell can be duplicated in hours or days in a cell which has no light (or weak artificial light which never varies), which is sound-proofed, in which odors are eliminated, etc. An environment still more subject to control, such as water-tank or iron lung, is even more effective.

2. An early effect of such an environment is anxiety. How soon it appears and how strong it is depends upon the psychological characteristics of the individual.

3. The interrogator can benefit from the subject’s anxiety. As the interrogator becomes linked in the subject’s mind with the reward of lessened anxiety, human contact, and meaningful activity, and thus with providing relief for growing discomfort, the questioner assumes a benevolent role.

4. The deprivation of stimuli induces regression by depriving the subject’s mind of contact with an outer world and thus forcing it in upon itself. At the same time, the calculated provision of stimuli during interrogation tends to make the regressed subject view the interrogator as a father-figure. The result, normally, is a strengthening of the subject’s tendencies toward compliance.

- CIA’s KUBARK interrogation manual (via cultureofresistance)

hipsterlibertarian:

UPDATE: from pegobry:

Edit: only noticed “Wikileaks” on the ladder after I  reblogged… Much better cartoon without. The point is it’s anyone, with  any ladder, who can do that and should do that.

I didn’t see the writing on the latter either.  But yeah, the point can be applied much more generally.

hipsterlibertarian:

UPDATE: from pegobry:

Edit: only noticed “Wikileaks” on the ladder after I reblogged… Much better cartoon without. The point is it’s anyone, with any ladder, who can do that and should do that.

I didn’t see the writing on the latter either.  But yeah, the point can be applied much more generally.

Source: cartoonpolitics

Beware of 'Al Chavezeera' ⇢

worldbyharoon:

Nikolas Kozloff

If past diplomatic cables are any indication, the Obama White House may be interested in perpetuating the ongoing US propaganda war in Latin America. According to classified correspondence recently released by whistle-blowing outfit WikiLeaks, Washington saw Venezuela as an upstart power whose public relations campaign stood to interfere with important US messaging efforts. 

It’s no secret that the Bush administration was paranoid about media coverage which had been critical of its international foreign policy, yet as more and more cables have come to light, it is eye-opening to see just how far the State Department was willing to go in equating Middle Eastern media with newly formed South American news outlets.

What seems to have concerned US diplomats most was the possibility that Al Jazeera, whose coverage of the Iraq War had gotten under the skin of the Bush administration, might collaborate with the likes of Venezuela as well as other South American nations. Hardly popular within the Beltway elite, Al Jazeera had broadcast graphic pictures of dead and captured US soldiers during the Iraq War. 

When the network aired the footage, then Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld accused Al Jazeera of violating the Geneva conventions. Then, during an April 8, 2003, air raid and artillery barrage on Baghdad, US forces killed at least three journalists, including an Al Jazeera correspondent. According to one report, President Bush no less may have even suggested that Al Jazeera offices in Qatar be bombed during a meeting with then British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

In light of such history, it’s not entirely surprising that diplomats would be alarmed by any growth of more independent and critical international media outlets. In an earlier Al Jazeera column, I detailed some of the US concern with left-leaning South American media, but new cables bring Washington’s fixation on the issue under more scrutiny. 

Conflating Al Jazeera and Telesur

In 2005, US officials went into overdrive in their media monitoring efforts, writing Washington that Hugo Chavez was “vigorously pushing” for the creation of a new South American news network named Telesur. US diplomats were concerned about such developments, and commented that, if Telesur proved to be successful, it might “promote Chavez’s ambitions for continental leadership” and even - horror of horrors - lead to “endogenous, (non-US) cultural development”. 

In a warning shot which threatened to undermine US-based media such as CNN, Chavez’s Minister of Information Andres Izarra announced that Al Jazeera would open an office in Caracas. The move seems to have alarmed the US embassy, which was seemingly concerned that the Middle Eastern network might collaborate with Telesur in future.   

In cloak and dagger fashion, US ambassador William Brownfield narrated how an anonymous “female journalist” representing Al Jazeera had “attended many government of Venezuela press conferences”. If that was not sufficient cause for concern, Brownfield added that the journalist in question had also participated in talk shows aired byVenezolana de Television, a state-owned TV station.

While researching my second book, I had the opportunity to interview Telesur’s General Manager, Aram Aharonian, personally in Caracas, and asked him whether he was concerned that the Bush administration might react negatively to any Al Jazeera-Telesur collaboration [to see the more unexpurgated interview, which came out in my hometown paper Brooklyn Railclick here]. Aharonian dismissed any such preoccupations, remarking: “Look, we collaborate with Al Jazeera just as we do with Voice of America. A delegation from Voice of America came to our offices last month, and we came to an agreement to exchange news and images.”

To Brownfield and US diplomats, however, Al Jazeera and Telesur seem to have represented a common hostile front. Indeed, in his communication to Washington, Brownfield even conflated the two, remarking at one point that Telesurcould represent “the birth of al-Chavezeera,” or “Chavez’s own CNN.”  What is more, Al Jazeera could provide Telesurwith “provocative” film footage from the Middle East, which could then be dubbed into Spanish. Shortly thereafter, the Bush administration’s fears came to pass when Telesur began to broadcast in earnest.  Moreover, a year after Brownfield sent his cable to the State Department, Telesur announced an official content-sharing agreement with Al Jazeera. In Washington, Connie Mack, a right-wing Republican Congressman from Florida, remarked that the decision was designed to create a “global television network for terrorists”.

Concern over Cuban connection

For years, Washington has waged an anti-Castro propaganda war on Cuba through the likes of Radio Marti, and therefore not surprisingly the spectre of Cuban-Venezuelan media collaboration looms large in Brownfield’s cable. While the US ambassador noted that Telesur appeared to have “weak legs” for the time being, the diplomat worried that the network would spread pro-Venezuelan and even pro-Cuban ideas.

During my own interview with Aharonian, I asked the Telesur General Manager whether he thought the network would contribute to the end of Cuba’s isolation. “Cubans,” he remarked, have had “a very siege-like mentality, ie that everything that comes from the outside is bad, it’s necessary to defend ourselves, etc. The US has been trying to transmit its media to Cuba for forty years, and it has done it poorly - Radio Marti, for example.”

“We have a different approach,” Aharonian added. “We see our presence in Cuba as an opportunity to get the Cuban people more informed about what is happening in Latin America and in the world. We now get three hours on prime time on Cuban television. In a certain sense, we have a captive audience as there’s not a lot of opportunities to change channels. For us, it’s a beneficial arrangement, and also for Cuba.”

Perhaps, the possibility of greater Cuban-Venezuelan cultural exchange was exactly what bothered US officials. According to Brownfield, Aharonian was a radical Uruguayan exile who originally came to Caracas in the 1980s to open an office of the Cuban media outlet Prensa Latina. Asking around in Caracas for further information on Aharonian, the US embassy located an unnamed foreign correspondent who was all too happy to smear the reputation of a fellow colleague in the interests of furthering US intelligence. According to the reporter, Aharonian had “formal or informal ties” to Cuban spies. 

Assessing Telesur’s trajectory

Eager to dispel the notion that Telesur was tied to some kind of specific political agenda, Aharonian told me that the new network would not serve as the mouthpiece for any particular government, Venezuelan or otherwise. “I don’t think there’s any campaign against Bush or anything like that,” he remarked, adding that Telesur was not in favour of the Bush administration either. “Which is a different thing. We give opinions from both sides, which is different from the US media where you have only one side. The idea is to provide more alternative information. In Miami, by contrast, there’s a mentality that we must encourage ‘anti-Cuba’ media, but we at Telesur are providing a balanced public space. We can’t be against anyone.”

At another point in the interview, Aharonian declared that I was “starting from a false assumption”, in believing thatTelesur was “against the US”.  Though the network had been critical of Washington, Aharonian said, Telesur also provided independent coverage of many Latin American countries. When I pointed Aharonian’s attention to a photo on the wall showing him standing next to Chavez, the Uruguayan exile said that the Venezuelan president never called him and the authorities did not get involved in the station’s business or internal politics.

Such nuanced positions notwithstanding, it appears from WikiLeaks cables that the US embassy was not convinced by such utterances. The ideological tilt of Telesur was evident, diplomats remarked: “leftist, anti-American, and pro-Chavez”. Though the network’s programming was initially “insipid,” the Americans believed the station later demonstrated “qualitative improvement”. 

Chavez’s ‘dollar diplomacy’

So much improvement, apparently, that the US embassy saw fit to monitor the station’s finances. Aharonian, one diplomat noted, “is a notoriously slippery character and may not have told the whole truth when he announced their budget as 10 million dollars”. In yet other cables, US officials sought to estimate how much Chavez spent on propaganda more generally, noting that Caracas had signed a $1.2 million contract with lobbying firm Patton Boggs to help improve Venezuela’s image in the US. 

As Chavez began to spend lavishly on foreign aid, US diplomats grew even more concerned. In 2006, they noticed that Venezuela was beginning to “win friends and influence countries in the region and beyond”. In a detailed report, the Americans catalogued Chavez’s long list of foreign projects, including projected dollar amounts for a construction initiative in Cuba, an infrastructure loan to the Dominican Republic, and even financial aid to help build an airport on the tiny Caribbean island of Dominica. 

But the Americans didn’t stop there, honing in on any and all projects which stood to enhance Venezuela’s image, even Chavez’s financing of a samba school in Brazil - as well as scholarships for poor Bolivians, a loan for a hospital in Uruguay, food assistance to the impoverished African nation of Mauritania, and humanitarian aid to Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso. Personally, Brownfield worried that Chavez could divert some of Venezuela’s National Development Fund to support diplomatic initiatives without effective public scrutiny or oversight. 

US diplomats interest in media studies

To read diplomatic cables emanating from the US embassy in Caracas, one might think that their diplomats had turned into graduate students pursuing advanced degrees in Media Studies. In a testament to the rising importance of Venezuela on the political radar, US officials showed a surprising degree of interest in everything from TV to advertising to documentaries to electronic media and even to incendiary billboards and murals. 

The US embassy was particularly exorcised over state-owned Venezolana de Television, which aired a video clip depicting crowds queuing up in line to buy liquid fuel canisters during an opposition-led oil lockout. A voice intoned: “The opposition unleashed terrorism on the Venezuelan people and it led to hunger and unemployment. Thanks to the new PDVSA (state oil company), PDVSA is for all of us, all of us are PDVSA.” 

In addition to Venezolana de Television, the pro-government tabloid VEA ”took on Uncle Sam” and was wont to “lob darts” at the US ambassador “through the use of insulting caricatures or altered photos”.  In addition, bothVenezolana de Television and VEA put out “soft and friendly” ads featuring a woman “who, thanks to a government of Venezuela micro-credit loan, has established a successful weaving business”.

Documentary film, cyberspace and popular murals

Apparently concerned that poor women receiving money to pursue weaving might one day turn against the US, diplomats left no stone unturned in their wider media analysis, including documentary film. As someone who has participated in panel discussions following screenings of The Revolution Will Not Be Televised, a film dealing with the 2002 coup directed at the Chavez government, I was particularly intrigued by US officials’ alarm over the documentary. 

In a cable, the Embassy noted with disappointment that the film had been catching on with major screenings being held “at several prestigious US universities, including Harvard, Stanford, and the University of California system, and most recently at the Lincoln Centre in New York”. Unfortunately, noted US diplomats, the mainstream media had not seen fit to question “the documentary’s veracity” and so the pro-Chavez documentary had started to attract a following.      

The US embassy worried about the internet, too. “The government of Venezuela,” noted one cable, “liberally uses cyberspace to spread its war on the oligarchy, neoliberalism, the United States government, and the proposed Free Trade Area of the Americas.”  I was personally intrigued to find that diplomats were concerned about such pro-Chavez websites as venezuelanalysis.com and vheadline.com, both of which I have written for at one time or another.

During a trip to Caracas in 2006, I was taken aback by incendiary pro-Chavez murals in Caracas, and apparently the US embassy was, too [to see some photos I took during my stay, click here].  Writing to Washington, diplomats took note of one billboard which bore the slogan: “Venezuela now belongs to all of us.” Yet another had shots of Chavez embracing an elderly woman, listening to a young girl sporting a red beret, and laughing along with a member of one of Venezuela’s indigenous tribes. 

The monitoring of popular imagery continued into the Obama era, with the US embassy cabling Washington in late 2009 in relation to a mural attacking Bush’s successor in Washington. In central Caracas, diplomats declared: “A prominently displayed, high-quality painted mural denigrating President Obama is currently on public display.” The mural in question depicted Obama’s face divided into two parts, “one half machine and the other half human”. Off to the left, a caption read: “Toy of the Empire. Easy to use, totally manipulatable,” while to the right, another read: “False Nobel Prize. 68 thousand Yankee soldiers in the Middle East. 680 billion dollars for the war.” 

The US embassy sent photos of the mural to Washington in an attachment, noting that the public art work “seems to have been professionally produced”. Diplomats added that they would submit a formal letter of protest to the local mayor and request that the mural be removed.

Monitoring everyone from celebrities to students        

Though certainly extensive, the embassy’s propaganda monitoring efforts were not limited to public art and cyberspace. In 2004, for example, the Americans grew concerned about US celebrities who had grown sympathetic toward Venezuela and Hugo Chavez, including actor Danny Glover and even boxing promoter Don King. Even worse, Venezuela had expanded its network of so-called “Bolivarian Circles” in the US, including Florida, New York, Washington DC, Oregon, Texas, Oklahoma, and California, and sympathisers had organised pro-Chavez rallies in such public spaces as Times Square.

The notion that US and Venezuelan leftists might make common cause was apparently not very agreeable to the American embassy. US diplomats related that the director of the Bolivarian Circle of Miami, Alvaro Sanchez, was seeking to recruit US university students to work for Chavez’s Barrio Adentro health programme. The embassy was so interested in Sanchez that it saw fit to pass along the activist’s personal email address, adding that the Miami native had sought out volunteer students to teach English in poor Venezuelan barrios. 

In 2006, I had the opportunity to speak to members of Venezuela’s innovative Women’s Bank or Banco de la Mujer, and in my second book I discussed the interesting story of the entity’s director, Nora Castaneda. From diplomatic correspondence, it seems I wasn’t the only one who had picked up on the novel institution: US officials noted that the bank had deployed women to the US to “to talk to audiences of the glories of the Bolivarian Revolution and to lambaste the US government’s hurtful neo-liberal policies that aim to enslave the populations of developing countries”.

US propaganda counter-offensive

In other ways, too, Chavez managed to show up the US in Latin America, for example through Venezuela’s promotion of international conferences. Through skillful and shrewd use of so-called Bolivarian People’s Congresses, Chavez was able “to spread his ideology and influence”. Diplomats suspected that the congresses provided a means for Chavez to come through with direct assistance for other impoverished Latin American nations.  

The embassy was apparently so concerned about Chavez’s growing profile at such venues that it saw fit to forward the names of individual indigenous representatives from Ecuador who attended the December 2004 Bolivarian Congress. “While anti-imperialism, ie anti-American sentiment, is often a hook with many indigenous leaders,” diplomats remarked, “Chavez also capitalises on racial or ethnic tensions. In countries like Peru, Bolivia and Ecuador he uses these tensions to encourage mass protests and demonstrations and to undermine shaky governments or weaken others from the left flank.”

By 2006, the US clearly saw the need for greater countermeasures to offset Chavez’s propaganda offensive. In a cable to Washington, Ambassador Brownfield endorsed the US Southern Command’s planned “partnership of the Americas” maritime surge into the Caribbean, to be led by aircraft carrier the USS George Washington.  Always the Machiavellian, Brownfield saw great PR value in the naval show of force. Specifically, the diplomat declared, “the deployment will help us to counter President Hugo Chavez’ courtship of Caribbean countries and his attempts to pit them against the United States”.

Brownfield believed that, by providing direct benefits to local people, the USS George Washington would provide a “stark contrast” to Chavez’s supposed failure to combat drug trafficking and promote economic development in the Caribbean region.  Brownfield planned to portray the carrier group deployment as a “routine US military and humanitarian outreach to the region” leading to economic benefits for local people at various ports of call. 

Always the wily diplomat, Brownfield hoped that Chavez would “take the bait”, deplore the US as imperialist, and thereby appear “at best silly and at worst clinically paranoid”. One of the more scheming US diplomats to emerge from WikiLeaks cables, Brownfield hoped that Chavez would “alienate himself if he publicly suggests participating countries are collaborating in the US military’s alleged machinations against him”. The ambassador added: “This is a win-win for us.”

Preoccupation over Telesur’s South American expansion

By 2007, one year after Brownfield sent his cable to Washington about the US naval deployment, US diplomats candidly admitted that they were in an all out propaganda war with Venezuela. In correspondence disclosed by Argentine paper Pagina/12, US diplomats spoke about the need to counteract media initiatives launched by Chavez, including Telesur, an outlet which served as the “main source to broadcast anti-US propaganda,” running “particularly slick” documentaries about CIA meddling in Latin America.

According to WikiLeaks cables, the Americans monitored Telesur General Manager Aharonian not just in Venezuela but in other countries farther afield. When Aharonian traveled to Chile to promote Telesur, US diplomats were on the case, noting that the Uruguayan radical had met with local government officials. The Americans even took note of Aharonian’s address to the Professional Journalists’ Association meeting in Vina del Mar, remarking that “the presentation included a 15-minute speech followed by a 15- minute promo-tape.” The US embassy in Santiago was apparently concerned that Telesur might form a partnership with Chile’s main cable TV operator, VTR, and diplomats later spoke with representatives of the local station in an effort to ascertain the feasibility of any deal.

Assessing WikiLeaks’ lasting Impact

In Depth

More from Nikolas Kozloff

 Quito cables: Exposing a pro-US line Argentina’s mercurial power couple WikiLeaks: Great power rivalry at the UN WikiLeaks and ‘US media war’ in South America Little idealism on post-Castro Cuba

Looking back on all the many cables dealing with everything from Telesur to Aharonian to incendiary public art work to Bolivarian Congresses, it is disheartening to note the condescending, supercilious and outright cynical attitude of US diplomats posted in Venezuela and indeed throughout Latin America. 

Yet, based on the past year of WikiLeaks’ revelations and the “cablegate scandal”, one might conclude that the public and media establishment will only take note of declassified information if it is linked to blatant illegalities. Perhaps we will have to wait, therefore, for a CIA leaker or other high level intelligence agencies to disclose more insidious deeds before we can get a wholesale debate about the course of US foreign policy.

That’s a pity, however. Though “cablegate” hasn’t revealed scandal at the same level as, say, the Iran-Contra affair or covert wars in Central America, the cables show the State Department as a deeply crass and troubling agency. Perhaps the lasting question, then, is whether the US public believes that devoting considerable diplomatic resources to monitoring the Latin American media and counteracting Chavez’s propaganda initiatives is constructive or even particularly moral.  

Sadly, for the time being, Americans seem passive and accepting of business as usual. Perhaps in the long run, however, they will start to demand reform at the State Department and a thorough revamping of US foreign policy - so as to reflect a more conciliatory and harmonious relationship with Latin America, as opposed to the patronising and sardonic posturing of diplomats such as Ambassador Brownfield.

Nikolas Kozloff is the author of Revolution: South America and the Rise of the New Left, and Hugo Chavez: Oil, Politics and the Challenge to the US.  Visit his web site, www.nikolaskozloff.com

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Al Jazeera’s editorial policy.

Ernesto ”Che" Guevara (June 14, 1928 – October 9, 1967)
(Der Baader Meinhof Komplex)

Ernesto ”CheGuevara (June 14, 1928 – October 9, 1967)

(Der Baader Meinhof Komplex)

project-argus:

theprophetofthecosmos:

petejesuschrist:

thehorriblehunchback:

Holy. Shit.

Whilst people were debating whether it was torture or not, Christopher Hitchens has the balls to aquire 1st hand experience. He subsequently suffered 6 months prior to the horror.

Fucking iron balls

This is terrifying. What a badass.

What’s disturbing is that the process isn’t even that dramatic.

Source: themostrepulsivemanalive

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