Archive for July 17th, 2007

By Paul Craig Roberts

In his novel 1984, George Orwell portrayed a future time in which the explanations of recent events and earlier history are continually changed to meet Big Brother’s latest purpose. Previous explanations disappear down “the memory hole.”

Sound familiar? Any American who pays attention can observe the identical phenomenon occurring in the US today.

Think about the Bush Regime’s changing explanations for the failed US occupation of Iraq. Shortly after Bush’s May 2003 announcement of “mission accomplished,” the mission revealed itself to be very much unaccomplished. Americans were told that the cause of the snafu was a small Sunni insurgency of two or three thousand at the most inspired by “die-hard Baath party remnants.” Remember the propagandistic deck of cards identifying the most wanted down to the less wanted? Americans were assured that once Saddam Hussein and his relatives and henchmen were rounded up, our troops would be pelted with the promised flowers instead of roadside bombs.

When the roundups, trials, and executions failed to fix the problem, the “die-hard” explanation disappeared. A new explanation, with no continuity to the old, took its place.

The new explanation was that Syria was allowing foreigners to cross its border into Iraq to commit jihad against the American troops. This explanation lasted until it became all too clear, despite the propaganda, that the “foreign fighters” were remarkably well accepted by, and concealed within, the Iraqi communities that were suffering all the collateral damage of the conflict.

When it came time for the US to create an Iraqi government, it was evident that it would be one dominated by Shi’ites. Then, for a limited time, it was permissible to recognize that the insurgency was popularly based in the Sunnis.

As the insurgency evolved into what the Iraq Study Group described as a Sunni-Shi’ite civil war [ PDF ] with US troops unclear on which side they stood, the Bush Regime and the captive media began blaming Al Qaeda for the escalating violence. Americans were assured by the Ministry of Truth that there wasn’t a civil war, just outsiders stirring up conflict. This enabled Big Brother to deny that there was a civil war and to revive fear of terrorist attacks in the US and UK, the new Oceania.

The Al Qaeda explanation was soon discarded into the memory hole. The explanation implied that Oceania’s invasion of Iraq had greatly expanded the ranks and strength of Al Qaeda, thus contradicting big Brother’s claim that his war in Iraq was making Oceanians safe by stamping out terrorism. The Al Qaeda explanation had to depart for another reason as well. Cheney, Israel, and the neocons, the rulers of the new Oceania, plan to attack Iran, and so the insurgency in Iraq is now being blamed on Iran.

The Ministry of Truth has accommodated the latest explanation, just as it did all others before, without remarking on the funeral of the previous explanation. All of a sudden, a new explanation appears and is repeated until it, too, goes down the memory hole.

The American and British media work the same way as the Ministry of Truth in Oceania. A day arrives when the “truth” no longer serves the empire or hegemonic power or center of moral purpose in the world, or for short, the regime. When that day arrives, a new explanation appears and is repeated until it, too, is discarded down the memory hole.

In recent weeks Americans have been fed a series of reports from official sources that Iran is arming both Iraqi insurgents and the Taliban in Afghanistan. Experts, both within the government and without, who have been made more attentive by the Bush Regime’s false charges of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction, have disputed the news reports.

But the reports keep on coming. As I write, the latest story is that the US military “discovered a field of rocket launchers near a US army base south of Baghdad armed with 34 Iranian-made missiles.” Can you imagine? The insurgents went to the trouble of lugging powerful missiles within striking distance of a US base and just left them there unfired to be discovered by the Americans. To further serve Cheney’s plan to attack Iran, the media report states: “Earlier this month, US commanders stepped up the charges [against Iran], claiming that senior leaders of Iran’s special forces and of the Lebanese Shiite Hezbollah militia have trained Iraqi fighters and provided other support.” [US finds Iranian rockets aimed at Iraq base, Agence France Presse, July 14,2007]

Notice that none of the explanations fed to Americans over the years have ever mentioned, even as a faint possibility, that the US invasion and occupation of Iraq might be the cause of the violence in Iraq.

Allegedly, the US is a free and open country with a free press and a government accountable to the people. Yet, the information fed to the American people is as thoroughly false as that fed to the citizens of Oceania by Big Brother through the Ministry of Truth in Orwell’s famous novel.

In Orwell’s novel, despite the totalitarian power of the government, nothing happens to people as long as they accept the government’s intrusive monitoring of their lives and do not become interested in truth or facts.. In such a world, truth and individuality pass out of human consciousness and become unimportant. Citizens survive by accepting Big Brother’s ever-changing reality.

This is what the mainstream media in the US and UK are enabling the new Oceania to accomplish. It is pointless to complain about a few Judith Millers here and there at the New York Times, or the obvious warmongers at the Weekly Standard, Fox “News,” and Wall Street Journal editorial page. The entire corporate media is behaving as a Ministry of Truth.

Copyright 2007 Creators Syndicate

Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan Administration. He is the author of Supply-Side Revolution : An Insider’s Account of Policymaking in Washington; Alienation and the Soviet Economy and Meltdown: Inside the Soviet Economy, and is the co-author with Lawrence M. Stratton of The Tyranny of Good Intentions : How Prosecutors and Bureaucrats Are Trampling the Constitution in the Name of Justice.

From Rense.com

 

Say “When.”

 

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July 9, 2007 By Matthew Rothschild

So the truth comes out.

After a myriad of stories about people being excluded from events where the President is speaking, now we know that the White House had a policy manual on just how to do so.

Called the “Presidential Advance Manual,” this 103-page document from the Office of Presidential Advance lays out the parameters for how to handle protesters at events.

“Always be prepared for demonstrators,” says the document, which is dated October 2002 and which the ACLU released as part of a new lawsuit. (For a copy of the lawsuit or the document itself, go to www.aclu.org/freespeech/protest/silenced.html.)

In a section entitled “Preventing Demonstrators,” the document says: “All Presidential events must be ticketed or accessed by a name list. This is the best method for preventing demonstrators. People who are obviously going to try to disrupt the event can be denied entrance at least to the VIP area between the stage and the main camera platform. . . . It is important to have your volunteers at a checkpoint before the Magnetometers in order to stop a demonstrator from getting into the event. Look for signs they may be carrying, and if need be, have volunteers check for folded cloth signs that demonstrators may be bringing.”

In another section, entitled “Preparing for Demonstrators,” the document makes clear that the intention is to deprive protesters of the right to be seen or heard by the President: “As always, work with the Secret Service and have them ask the local police department to designate a protest area where demonstrators can be placed, preferably not in view of the event site or motorcade route.”

The document also recommends drowning out protesters or blocking their signs by using what it calls “rally squads.” It states: “These squads should be instructed always to look for demonstrators. The rally squad’s task is to use their signs and banners as shields between the demonstrators and the main press platform. If the demonstrators are yelling, rally squads can begin and lead supportive chants to drown out the protestors (USA!, USA!, USA!). As a last resort, security should remove the demonstrators from the event site.”

The document offered advice on how to recruit members for such squads: “The rally squads can include, but are not limited to, college/young republican organizations, local athletic teams, and fraternities/sororities.”

The document does contain a warning in bold, however: “Remember—avoid physical contact with demonstrators.” It also advises to make sure that whatever action is taken to drown out the demonstrators does not “cause more negative publicity than if the demonstrators were simply left alone.”

From The Progressive

 

The graph won’t post – read it at The Billings Outpost News

We think you’ll be amazed!  Remember – Montana is a RED state!

From ABC News:

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Senate Democrats, hoping to raise pressure on President George W. Bush and his fellow Republicans to pull troops from Iraq, have scheduled an around-the-clock war debate starting on Tuesday.

“I think that the American people deserve what we’re doing and that is focusing attention every minute of the day on what is going wrong in Iraq,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid told reporters on Monday in unveiling the rare marathon work day.

Reid said the Senate will stay in session all night Tuesday and into Wednesday to debate war policy and a Democratic plan requiring the pull-out of all U.S. combat troops from Iraq by the end of April 2008.

Democrats have all but publicly acknowledged that they will be unable to pass their end-the-war amendment because opposition Republicans are insisting on 60 votes for a victory.

So let us get this straight – the Democrats are going to stay up all night to debate the war knowing that it will have no impact on the Republicans needed to make a difference in the vote.  Then what the hell are they doing it for? 

This has been called “political theater” – so it’s basically a show for “the People” to make us think the Democrats are doing what we elected them to do!

The American People do NOT deserve you staying up all night to salve your guilty consciences – we deserve you to get off your butts and end this war!Well, ladies and gentlemen – we’re not buying the show!  And we’re calling bullsh*t on BULLSH*T!

Say “When.”